Thursday, March 5, 2015

February {2015} Recap

I have debated about what I want to do with my blog for a long long time.  And rather than give it up completely ( I just couldn't ) I've decided to put together a recap of each month and sprinkle in a few other posts in between if I have the time.  I've always kept the intent of this blog as a scrapbook for my kids and myself, so I want to continue to document those things, but without the pressure (from myself) that I need to write a post every/other day, ect.  So, without further ado...our recap of the month of February!

// We kicked off the month with a Super Bowl Party at our friends Amy and Chad's house.  We had a few drinks, snacked on some delicious apps and watched New England beat Seattle.  The kids wanted  nothing to do with the football game until the half time show came on.  We LOVE Katy Perry!

//  We also had the girl's annual school Sock Hop. It ended up being quite a busy night as we started off at the girls' studio for their musical theater technique class and then had to quickly change them into their poodle skirts for the sock hop and from there we drove to Adam's parents house.

 - The sock hop was so much fun for the girls.  It's one of their very favorite days of the year.  Lilli had been counting down the days for over a month.  They got brand new poodle skirts this year from Sarah's Poodle Skirt Palace and they had an absolute blast running around and dancing/hanging out with their friends.  It was so cute to see all the kids dressed up and having a good time.  Even tho it's not my personal favorite school event, the kids sure have a blast and enjoy it every year.  It's hard to believe that next year will be Alexa's last sock hop and then she'll be off to middle school!!

- We got to Juan & Linda's pretty late - the girls had fallen asleep in the car and actually stayed sleeping once we got them inside and to bed.  So, Adam and I decided to go out on the town.  Unfortunatly, said town is fairly small and the first bar we went to closed at 11.  So, I basically had to chug my drink...then we went to another bar and I was pretty much toast after my second long island.  We hit up a truck stop so I could wolf down some french toast, but I was still a stumbly mess when Adam finally took me home at 2am.  Luckily, I was able to wake up for our early morning tax appointment, but I pretty much slept/laid on the couch the rest of the day.  #oldladyproblems   And I may or may not have bought these amazing cat rings during our wild night out.... ;)

// One of Lilli's teachers is about to have a baby any day now, so instead of taking the chance that she'd be in labor or home on maternity leave with her sweet baby during the normal schedule for parent/teacher conferences - we had them a few weeks early.  Adam and I were so impressed with the excellent reports about our little girl.  She is excelling so quickly in first grade and besides a reminder here and there to stop being so chatty with her friends, her behavior is wonderful, too!!  We usually let the girls pick out a few books from the book fair that they have during conferences, but since Lilli's were early the book fair wasn't going on yet - so, we took her to Target to pick out a few new books.  She chose an Amelia Bedelia book and a Junie B. Jones chapter book.  We also had to take a picture by the new #TargetDog statue.

// Valentine's Day!!  It was kind of exciting to have Valentine's Day fall on a Saturday this year, but instead of doing something super romantic, we took the girls to the MN State High School Dance Competition.  My friend Kristin's sister is the captian of the Eden Prairie Dance Team and we had a blast watching their high-kick team make it to finals.  Kristin and her family made us feel super welcome, like we were part of the EP family.  Kara quickly became the girls' dance IDOL!

 - We also had lots of fun making Valentine's for the girls' teachers, classmates, dance coaches and their dance teams.  Alexa of course had to incorporate 'minions' into her Valentine's...and I'm pretty impressed with how they turned out.  #pinterestWIN

// One of Adam's co-workers celebrated his 40th birthday at the Golden Nugget in Minnetonka.  Alexa had a sleepover at her friend Jillian's and my brother and his fiance took Lilli so that Adam and I could enjoy a night out and celebrate with Andrew.  It was fun to have a date night with Adam and see some of his awesome co-workers again.  Then I got this picture text from my brother......

...and had to show everyone his idea of 'babysitting'.  Clearly, she's loving every second of it.

// February 18th was Natioanl Eat Ice-Cream for Breakfast Day!!  Probably the girls' most favorite day to celebrate.. not only did they love eating the ice-cream for breakfast but we loved supporting the fight against childhood cancer.  You can read more about it, here.  

// It was our good friends Andrea and Aaron's wedding anniversary this month.  While chatting with Andrea, I discovered they hadn't made plans to celebrate, so I offered to watch their little Avrie so that they could enjoy a night out together....because that's what bestie do.  The girls loved having Avrie over and I loved visiting with A and Aa after their date night!

{stolen from Andrea's IG}

// I've been sworn to secrecy on any details but the girls have started practicing for their big dance finale for recital coming up at the end of May.  They practice on weekends for 2 hours at a time, so Adam and I usually go out with other dance parents for a few drinks or a meal/apps depending on the time of day.  We've seen a few sneak peeks of their routine and I promise you (family) it's going to be worth sitting through the entire recital for!  Costumes have all come in, as well, eeeekkk!!  So exciting!

// Spur of the moment (as in 6 at night) I asked Adam if he'd take me to the 50 Shades of Grey movie.  He kinda rolled his eyes, but said he would if I could find a last minute babysitter.  Lucky for me, our go-to gal, Delaney, was willing to watch our girls at her house while she did her homework so that Adam and I could sneak out for a bit.  And let me tell you there was nothing at all awkward about sitting next to a mid-60's lady, who was there all alone, laughing at all the awkward parts and basically watching a light pornographic movie with like a hundred other people...#sarcasm  But honestly, the movie was just kind of...meh!

// All four of us had eye doctor appointments this month.  Adam has dry tear ducts and is on special drops 4 times a day and a specific regimen of putting warm rags on his eyes a couple times a day......he sometimes follows through. ;)  My eyes are actually getting better, which apparently happens at my age and then when I hit 40 things should go down hill again.  The girls on the other hand have perfect eyesight.  We bought them each a pair of new sunglasses that are 100% UV protected.  Did you know that the cute sunglasses you buy at Target may not 100% protect your eyes from UV rays...even if they say they do?

// Javiera got a hair cut and came home with a beautiful new bandana around her neck.

// Alexa had her 4th grade play, Joust!  She was a damsel and a boomwhacker!  She has been singing and practicing the songs pretty much all school year, it seems.  The 4th graders all did such a wonderful job!  We took her out for frozen yogurt afterwards.  She put so much love and hard work into that play, so a treat out was definitely deserved.

// Our friends Amy and Chad took a fun winter vacation to Mexico with their beautiful little girls.  I'm not even going to talk about how jealous I am!!  While they were gone, we were on Ernie duty.  Isn't he adorable?

// My SIL Andrea and her boyfriend Cesar came to visit from New York.  They were here for a week over Andrea's Birthday.  We were so excited to be able to have them here and have a night out to celebrate.  Grandma Linda watched the girls while we went out with them and Adam's brother Ben and wife Amanda.  We had dinner at Benihana's and then went to a local bar (about a block from our house) to play pool/darts and to ring in Andrea's 25th year.  We had way too much fun and miss them already!

// Andrea and Cesar spent some time with their friends while back in MN and Adam's mom offered to  take Alexa and Lilli to a hotel for the night so Adam and I could have yet another date night this month.  We've been completely spoiled!!!  We hit up dinner at The Libertine in Uptown Mpls.  and then grabbed a tub of ice-cream and came home to watch Heart of Dixie.

It's hard to believe we fit all this in in such a short month.  Looking ahead, March isn't proving to slow down at all.....afterall, it's dance competition month!!  Whoo Hoo!!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

You know you're raising a dancer when...

Bobby pins take over your home...

You ask them to do some basic counting and they start with

Walking is replaced with tapping, leaping and turning...

You can never own enough pairs of tights....(and then your dancer will cut holes in the feet to make them 'convertible').

Instead of music all you hear is the chanting of chorography steps.

You can create the perfect bun!

There is ALWAYS time to do a random arabesque...(Center aisle at Target, during dinner, in the classroom...ect.)

Your child asks you to help stretch muscles you didn't even know existed.

The dance studio has become your second home.

One hour in the studio cures all bad moods.

Your child won't wear jeans because they can't do the splits in them.  Jeggings for the win!

You can never own enough pair of black leggings.

Toes are pointed...always!

Every large piece of furnature becomes their 'barre'.

You've turned your 4th bedroom into a 'dance studio' that includes a 'stage'.

The backseat of your car becomes a snack bar with all the carpooling you do.

Your child's #1 excuse for not ever being able to do anything is..."I can't..I've got dance" which they are not at all unhappy about.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

School Sock Hop {Sarah's Poodle Skirt Palace Review + FREE Shipping + Giveaway}

2 weekends ago was the girls' annual Sock Hop at their school.  I would rank this event as one of their top 5 favorite days of the year.  They start their count-down months in advance and the excitement is almost too hard to manage.  This year marked our 5th Sock Hop and as always, it did not disappoint.  The girls had a blast.  

Now that they're older it's a little bit easier on us parents, because let's face it - an elementary school dance is nothing but kids running around the gym chasing each other.  Lilli's at the age now where she can run off with her friends and I don't feel I need my eyes on her at all times.  We have a meeting spot for them to 'check in' every once in awhile, but for the most part they have free reign to hang out with their friends, spend tons of money on snacks, get their faces painted each other around.  And the parents stand and watch hoping that nobody runs into each other and gets hurt.

I'd say the most exciting part is the time leading up to the dance, the anticipation and getting their outfits prepared.  We've been fortunate enough to have an amazing gal help us with the girls' skirts, Sarah from Sarah's Poodle Skirt Palace on Etsy.  She made the girls' skirts 3 years ago and we were so impressed with how well they were made and held up over the years that Sarah offered to make them new ones this year.  If it weren't for them outgrowing the other ones, we'd still be using them because they are in absolute perfect condition still.

Everything is all about pink and black these days because that's their dance studio colors, so it wasn't at all surprising that they wanted to incorporate those colors into their new poodle skirts.  They couldn't have the same, of course, so they alternated the colors of their skirt and poodle appliqué.

The excitement was overwhelming.  They could not wait to give those babies at twirl...
Sarah does such a fantastic job and her quality of work never disappoints.  

Next year will be Alexa's last official Sock Hop before she moves on to middle school (sigh..), but Lilli still has a few years left to wear hers.

{it's so hard to get them to stand still for pics at the actual event....this is as good as I could get.  Don't mind the blue sucker lips}.  

Sarah offers poodle skirts in all colors and sizes as well as many other accessories for your Sock Hop.  She's been in love with the 50's ever since she was young and has a passion for making poodle skirts. 

"I have had a passion for poodle skirts since I was a young girl.  I am in my 30's so the 50's era was long past when I came of the age to want one for myself.  There is something about twirling around and around in a full circle skirt that makes girls of all ages feel pretty and carefree.  In the 50's it was a staple for all girls to have a dance poodle skirt and the tradition continues with sock hops, birthday parties and school plays.  

When I was younger it was so hard to find a well made poodle skirt, costumes were made to be worn once or twice because they were a costume.  I got the idea to begin making poodle skirts when a good friend of mine was looking for a poodle skirt costume for her daughter that would last for years instead of a few wearings.  I made her costume and to my surprise I received more and more requests for one of my skirts.  Years later here I am turing a childhood passion into a lifelong dream.  My goal is to bring a quality heirloom that will be enjoyed for years to come." ~Sarah

Please visit her shop and use the coupon code SHIPMEFREE for Free Shipping on your order.

Sarah's Poodle Skirt Palace :: Etsy :: Facebook

Sarah is offering one lucky reader a custom poodle skirt of your choice size and color.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

First Companie Dance Performance

{Kaylee, Jillian, Isabelle, Alexa, Rachel, Carly, Taylor}

{Lilli, telling the other girls what to do and where to stand...#missknowitall}

{Clara, Gabby, Lilli, Elizabeth, Elly, Sophia, Addie}


{Elly & Lilli}

{Alexa & Avrie}

{Lilli & Avrie}

This past weekend Alexa and Lilli got to dance at our community expo that was held at the high school.  Not only were we super excited to see the dances that they've been working so hard on come together on stage, but this was also their very first dance performace with their companie teams.  Alexa performed her jazz number, Minion 7, and Lilli's group did their ballet dance to "Count on Me" by Bruno Mars.  Unfortunatley, neither of their costumes were in yet, so they performed in their practice attire.

I was a bundle of nerves for a few different reasons.  First, we were able to watch Lilli's group (Starlights) run though their dance the week before and it was a complete disaster.  Another mom and I looked at each other about 15 seconds in with our eyes bulging.  The two girls on the ends were on complete opposite sides, the girls in the middle were staring aimlessly at each was a total mess.  While we realize that the girls are still young (the youngest companie team), we KNEW they were better than what they showed us that day.  So, we were a bit anxious to see how they'd do when they had to perform to a larger audience.  And to our excitement, they were able to pull it off at the expo.  They came together so well and did a fantastic job.  After a quick sigh of relief, us Starlight moms high fived each other - they did it, whew!!!

Second, (this one is a little hard to admit) I was nervous for Alexa.  She was accepted into a companie of girls that are extremely talented.  They are used to doing well, they are used to being challenged with hard coreography and they all blend very well together.  Alexa is the newbie to the group (Amazing Stars) and has very little experience dancing compared to her teammates.  I never wanted her to sense she was under any sort of pressure, from us, or anyone else.  I think she realizes that she needs to work extra hard and step up her game to be on this team but, it's never really phased her.  She's not one to complain or get down on herself.  In the big picture, she see's herself just as qualified as the rest of them...and I love that about her.  She has a confidence about herself, but in the most humble way.  And when she walked out on that stage and started dancing my nerves and all those silly insecurities I felt for her disappeared.  She did so great and seemed to fit right in.  We couldn't have been more proud.

Obviously, there is always room for improvement and both teams have some time left before competitions start, but this little sneak peek into the season is getting us all very excited!!   

I'm especially grateful for my BBB Andrea who drove nearly an hour with  little Avrie to watch the girls dance.  Having them there with us in the audience was so nice!!  Also, a huge thanks to Amazing Star mom, Kim, for taking such awesome pics of our girls!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Oh, hey January!!

I think I've come home from work every day this month and said, I'm going to blog tonight...I need to write a blog tonight....and then something comes up and I don' now I'm practically a month behind and even contemplated for a short minute, just hanging this whole blog thing up all together.  But, then I remembered how much I love to document our life, even the little mundane things that only really matter to me and my family.  That's really all this little blog of mine is for, right?  So, here is a quick recap of what we've been up to this month so far...

// We celebrated Christmas with Adam's family by having our traditional seafood feast for dinner, going to Spanish mass and celebrating Kings Day at their church.  It was such a special celebration and we devoured more delicious food. 

// We celebrated Christmas with my family the following weekend.  The girls were so happy to be able to spend a few days with their cousins.  We had a great time decorating cookies, playing lots of games (including our traditional game of sardines) and trading gifts.  We also got to see my grandparents who we haven't seen in a long time. 

// Princess Javiera turned ONE on the 14th.  She was spoiled rotten by having Adam home from work all day to play with her.  She was given lots of special treats, some new toys (that Chip destroyed) and a pretty pink striped sweater.

// The girls and I had a fun mama/daughter date with our friends Amy, Macy and Sydney on a random weekend that Adam had to work.  We went out to lunch and then hit up Cherry Berry for dessert.  It's been forever since we've hung out with these guys and it was so much fun to catch up.  Syd and Mac ended up coming back to our house for a sleepover, which was just MADE Alexa and Lillian's day!!

// Our friends Crea & Jason (and their daughter Addie) got into a major/minor car accident near their house...major because their vehicle is nearly totalled and minor because besides some soreness from their seatbelts and the air bags, they came out completely unscathed.  Nevertheless, it was very scary and I couldn't wait to see them and give them a big hug at dinner out at The Ground Round.  The kids were a riot and made little signs asking the waiter to bring them some more popcorn. 

// Our buddy Avery wrestled in a state qualifying tournament on MLK Day.  The girls didn't have school, so Adam was able to be home and take them to the all-day tourny.  Avery did SO well.  Won is 1st and 3rd matches and lost his 2nd and 4th match that would have given him 2nd place into state.  It was hard for me to be at work and only receive text messages for updates, but I was able to be there for his last match, thankfully.  Unfortunately, it didn't end with him making it to state, but he wrestled hard and made us very proud.  Despite the compltely bored and tired faces on the girls, they enjoyed watching him, too - there was just some long breaks between his matches.  Adam wrestled in high, he was totally in his element and even ran into a few of his old coaches.

// Last Friday was crazy hair/outfit day at the girls' school.  They love to go all out for dress-up days and had a fun time putting these little ensambles together.

//  For dance the girls are required to take a certain number of technique classes over the coarse of the season.  Alexa is required to take 6 and Lilli, 3.  Lilli has surpassed her required amount, but Alexa still needed a couple, she took a few over the weekend.  Carly, Alexa, Jillian, Lilli and Elly made a dancer sandwich! ;)

// Oh, and Alexa turned TWENTY overnight.  I don't know how it happened, but my little girl is growing up so fast!!  However, I am loving the fact that she has a cellphone now because of all the cute selfies she sends me.  #loveher