Monday, May 27, 2013

Mary Poppins play review

We subscribe to the anchorage concert association and pick 4-5 events to attend each year. We sometimes add on a few throughout the year and also have been going to some youth theater with Ocoee. She loves the plays and always sits and pays close attention. 

This year's highlight was Mary Poppins. We have been looking forward to t all year. We picked an afternoon show so Ocoee    would be well rested. We had 4th row tickets and a few kids in front of us so the view was great for ocoee. We tossed all her stuff in her seat and she plopped in my lap a few minutes before the curtain rose. 

The show was, like Mary herself, practically perfect in every way! The casting was spot on and the color and lights were a feast for the eyes. It was worth every penny. I loved the messages that the play hit on, having fun and joy in your life, spending time with your kids, treating your toys and others kindly and money's value being in how you spend it. 

There were some amazing magical moments when Bert danced on the ceiling of the theater, Mary's umbrella flying and the park transformation. The special effects they pulled off were engineering feats! 

Ocoee indulged in her first chocolate milk and I had a glass of Pinot before the show. They also allow pre-orders for intermission so our fruit plate, wine and chocolate milk were waiting for us. We stepped outside into the glass walk way and had a quick mini picnic before heading back in for act 2. 

I was worried Ocoee would fall asleep but the show held her attention and she stayed riveted the whole time. Three hours is a lot for a 20 month old! We got home and she feel asleep before 6. Tired little lovely. 

I am extremely happy she enjoys theater as much as I do and I am going to begin picking next seasons play today since I received the new season schedule. 

The show was simply supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Fun with love bug

The whole family went to see the junior theater production of Winnie the Pooh on Sunday. Ocoee exclaimed Bear! When pooh first come out. We don't have any Pooh books and she has never watched a show but she still seemed to like all the plush character and she loves plays. We head go the big show of Mary Poppins on Sunday. 

Ocoee and all of our animals have special bonds. She misses Love dog and spends lots of time taking care of Brodie. She covers his up with cloth napkins and hugs and climbs all over him. He tolerates it all by just laying there and I secretly think he enjoys all the attention. When you ask her what doggies do she pants because Brodie is a big time panter!

Nodstroms had a big sale and Ocoee scored new sandals and other cute gear. We love a sale! She likes Nordys because they won her over with a pink balloon. Sneaky!

School is officially out after tomorrow! Can't wait to have all summer with love bug! We head to Juneau, Alaska next week and I just booked a trip to Phoenix, Arizona in July. It will be so hot!! Can't wait-our Alaska bodies need some heat. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Alaska Snow in May!!

Check out the photo shoots of Ocoee with her Uncle Dede in the snow....yep, snow in May!

It was a great visit and May is still my favorite month of the year, even if it snows!


Friday, May 17, 2013

Summer bucket list

Summer starts for me in 7 days. Next Friday I will bust out of the doors of the school ready for a nice long summer break. My book club girls and I will get together for drinks, manis  and pedis to celebrate retirements, graduations and last day of work! I simply can not wait!!

In anticipation I have made a bucket list of things I want to do. Most are simple but those are the things that make me happy. I look forward to recharging my batteries, reconnecting with my hubby and loving Ocoee more.

Work out more
Color run with friends
Hike, new ones and old ones
Head north for Nancy lake Camping
Spend time in Homer
Visit Fairbanks
Travel to Denali National Park
Photo shoots with Ocoee, especially when grandparents are in town.
Bike rides with new bike trailer
Use Zoo/Museum pass
Read tons of books
Visit the beach and have picnics
Picnics with hubby at lunch
Walk coastal trail, feed ducks
Make matching earrings for all my lost least try!
Get hair did :)
Plant more ferns in garden
Kayak portage and whittier
Spend time with Sarah when she is in
Catch up with friends and meet new babies
Long relaxing lunches
Cook with no rushing, try new recipes

What will you do this summer? Many of my friends have big trips to Europe or back to the lower 48. We have Juneau coming up and then lots of other Alaska trips but nothing out of state.....unless I can't take the weather and book a flight outta here to the sun. As I speak it is snowing and very un-summer like.


Thursday, May 16, 2013

Letters to Ocoee

I am not someone who likes to be alone. I usually find a way to be in the middle of things even when it comes to seating. I don't like to feel left out. I love big crowds and events. With you in my life I have felt a shift in this habit. I often love our quiet time together. When it is just you and I and no distractions I am at complete peace. I remember a friend, Tahya, emailing me when you were born that she missed late night wake ups because how quiet the house was and the one on one time with the baby. I didn't really appreciate this until now. Being with you is the closet thing to being alone and yet completely connected at the same time I can imagine. You are learning new words and actions very day. If I say a word these days you say it back. I want time to slow down so I can marvel at life and you. You my dear Ocoee are so wonderfully and beautifully made!

Love always

Uncle Dede

Ocoee has a really cute habit of creating a roll call, where she identifies everyone around her. Mama, Dada, Brobro (Brodie dog) Ness (Guiness dog) and now Uncle Dede for Uncle Dale.

She also gets worked up and says your name over and over if you are out of her sight. This week she has had lots of time with Uncle Dede. This makes me very happy because family time is hard to come by when you live in Alaska.

We were all able to spend time in Seward, visit the baby polar bear at the zoo, play at the Imaginarium in the museum, and enjoy having Uncle Dede around. He was able to take her into daycare, change diapers and give her a bath. All these things will add to the memories we made last year when visiting Tennessee.

As the movie Anvil says, "Family, it's heavy sh*t man!"

 Uncle Dede and Ocoee at the Zoo

 Ocoee rocking her new bear hat from Grandaddy in Tennesseee.

 Trapped in a giant bubble at the Imaginarium.

All three of us picking out animal hats.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Mother's Day weekend

Friday we packed up and headed 3 hours south to Seward. My brother flew in for my birthday which also landed on Mother's Day weekend this year. We rolled into Seward around 6 and headed to Rays on the waterfront for dinner and drinks. Ocoee loved all the taxidermy fish on the wall. After dinner we met our friends at the cabin we rented on Lowell point. The cabin was 2 bedrooms and a great fire pit so we celebrated all night long sitting around the fire. 

Saturday we headed out bright and early for some fishing in resurrection bay. We were unlucky with a few boat problems that we worked out but the day started late. Luckily we had lots of whale sightings which were nice for my brother. Ocoee stayed back at the cabin with our nanny/babysitter. They walked the beach and played with new toys. Ocoee learned to say new words over the weekend including: nimo, dede (uncle dale), Kayla and shush. 

The fishing was pretty poor with only a few rockfish and a ton of flounder. We don't eat the flounder as it gets mushy cooked but we made some really yummy ceviche out of it. 

Too early for halibut. 

Saturday night we cooked and fried food and chowed down. Then a late night of cards kept us busy. 

Sunday we slept in a bit and enjoyed a lazy morning with a nice walk on the beach. My phone died so no photos but the weather was amazing! Ocoee loved picking up shells and we found too star fish at low tide. One was about 12 inches big and yellow and black. The other was twice that size and brilliant purple.Ocoee squealed when she touched it. She played in the waves as they came in with her rubber boots on. 

My brother and I went out for a paddle while Ocoee napped. We went half way to Caines head in the wooded double kayak and were lucky to have a very playful seal hang out with us. He swam and circles the kayak for 20 minutes before we turned back to Lowell point. We drove out to look at exit glacier but the road was close so we didn't get to hike up. 

To celebrate Mother's Day and my bday we stopped in Girdwood and ate at jack spratts for dinner. It was a delicious dinner and all local and organic food. Ocoee made friends, we ate, drank and were merry. 

It was a lovely weekend surrounded by those I love. Best gifts ever. 


Friday, May 10, 2013

Safety Spot for Moms

My lovely friend Tam sent this today (she is a treasure chest of great ideas, old and new). It was so good I decided to share.

I have had anxiety now that Ocoee is mobile about cars and especially parking lots. This magnet would allow for her to have a safe spot to be and fun for her while being peace of mind for me.

The kiddo places their hand in the safety spot and you get unloaded with items in and out of the car while they stay safe. This could be any sticker or magnet really but you can order this one from Amazon for 8.99. I already added one to my cart!

Any other cool safety ideas out there? I always tell Ocoee safety first when buckle her into her car seat and we make clicking sounds together. She loves making sounds no matter what the occasion is!


Thursday, May 9, 2013

The business of birth

When I as pregnant I was completely immersed in trying to have a natural birth and how the whole big day would go down. I was lucky to have an amazing gynecologist who literally saved my life when I started being his patient.

In the end I was the opposite of what I wanted, I had a 10 day late, C-section for a 10 pound 10 ounce baby. But I had a healthy baby and nothing else matter. It all went really well and 10 months of planning and fretting went out the window.

That being said I still find natural and alternative birth fascinating and was browsing my email this morning when my latest edition to GOOP popped up. This is a blog/magazine online that Gwyneth Paltrow publishes. I always find great things there.

This issue focuses on mothers and has an interview and clip of a documentary about The Farm. The Farm is a hippy like compound in Middle Tennessee, close to my college town. We used to go to parties there and my nursing friends would visit to learn about the natural birthing practices being used there. The film, Birth Story, focuses on the methods of Ina May Gaskin and midwifery at The Farm. I will be putting it on my Netflix queue today.

Another film we watched while pregnant was, The business of being born. These all take a different look at midwives and birth in modern times. I am a proponent of doing what in the hell ever works for you! There is no right or wrong way to create life, there is only your way. I do however believe you should investigate and learn your options. My options became limited but I was in full control of the decisions because I was armed with information. Information is your friend!!

So congrats to the following people on being new or mothers again in the last few months!

The Evans/Beck Family
The Baums
The Bowmans
My step-sister, Katie Mathews-Townsend
The Lorenzen Family

I know there are others I am leaving out but I send my love and happiness to you!

Being a mother has changed me in many, many ways. I truly have never known a love like this before. For that Ocoee, I will also thank you!


Tuesday, May 7, 2013


A few of bugaboo-who calls herself CoCo!


Ocoee is currently obsessed with jackets. This makes sense since I sorta have a jacket issue as well. Not into purses or shoes too much but a jacket not only is fun for fashion but serves a higher purpose to keep you warm and safe, almost like a wearable metaphor for comfort and protection.

Her current jacket was a gift from her grandparents and has a large frog head on it. The jacket is still too big but she found it the closet where I had it stashed for when she gets bigger. I think that is also part of the thrill. She loves getting things I have hidden out.

Everyday her dad talk about how quickly she changes and grows. Her language skills are crazy right now with her singing, scolding the dogs and us, and using 3-5 words together in a sentence. She gets shy around others when we are out and about and then when we get in the car she tells us everything she was thinking and didn't interesting mix of me, who talks all the time and her padre who is more reserved and less chatty.

She really loves to help me cook and always tastes or smells what I am using. We always take the time to go through the spices and let her smell them. She accidentally sniffed too hard on the pepper and was upset that she then had an itchy nose. I hope she continues to be brave and try new things.

She also loves animals and makes all the animal sounds. We roar, moo and neigh a lot in our house these days. I am sure she will love going to the zoo now, compared to when she was younger and would just snooze in the stroller at the Oregon zoo and Nashville zoo.

Our house is filled with celebrations this week. Today is our anniversary, 8 years of marriage! I feel truly lucky that our marriage has grown stronger and and our love deeper. We are each others support and best friends. My in-laws are celebrating 40 years in a month and it is joyous to see relationships that stand the tests of time.

My brother is also flying up for the first time to visit us in Alaska. We have a big weekend of fishing and kayaking in Seward planned. On Sunday, we celebrate my birthday and mothers' day. I  love this time of year because spring is here and all of these events make for a festive atmosphere.

Happy May!!