"The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep."

~Robert Frost

Friday, September 17, 2010

Good to the Last Drop!

If you know me at all, you know that I have a love affair with coffee. It's not at all just about the caffeine boost -- although, as Stephanie Piro says, "Behind every successful woman is a substantial amount of coffee!" And as a busy mom of three even busier little girls, I'm awfully grateful that caffeine comes in the form of the comforting deliciousness that is coffee! But really, for me coffee -- whether a steaming latte, a rich mocha, or even a strong cup of plain black coffee -- is the ultimate comfort food.

My amazing husband gave me an espresso machine for Christmas last year, and I've experimented endlessly with it -- Lamont always wants a caramel macchiato, so 9 times out of 10 that's what I make him in the morning before work, but I love to try new drinks all the time. I can do iced ones, but I prefer hot, and I think my all time favorite is a simple peppermint latte with a crushed peppermint candy on top. Oh my...it is simple perfection in a cup! Lamont loves peppermint mochas, and I love peppermint white mochas -- it's an important distinction, mind you.

And what situation in life doesn't call for coffee?? A strong cup to start out a blurry-eyed morning, a pumpkin spice latte to warm your hands on a chilly autumn day... My very dear friend Holly, at http://www.hollyclousephotography.com/, became my very dear friend over literally hundreds of delicious coffee dates! *happy sigh*

All that said, I'm sharing with you a couple of my decorating tributes to the delight of coffee -- just because. :-)
I love my kitchen clock! I seriously think I smile every single time I look at it.

And these adorable wall plaques are so delightful that just admiring them is almost enough by itself without me actually making coffee...almost.
My two other favorite coffee quotations (along with the Stephanie Piro one above), both by unknown authors:
"Mothers are those wonderful people who can get up in the morning before the smell of coffee."
"Sleep is a symptom of caffeine deprivation."

Monday, September 13, 2010

She's a dancing queen, young and sweet!

Today was Ashley's very first dance class, ahhhhh! I somehow managed to send her into the dance studio all by herself, and if I happened to be hovering outside peering through the window during her whole class, well -- that didn't hurt anyone, did it??

She did great, and had a huge smile stuck on her face the whole time. There are ten little girls in her class, and they already seem to be forming the strong, instant friendships that only three and four year old girls can manage. It was precious watching them holding hands in a big circle and skipping around together. :-) Her class is a tap/ballet combo class, but today seemed to be mostly getting to know each other and some basic stretching and jumping and dancing in circles. So cute!
Ashley wanted her picture taken at the house before we left...

And I stole this shot of her as she first surveyed the studio; she was a little overwhelmed for a moment, but then she jumped right in. Sometimes I feel like she is more poised than I am...

She flew straight into my arms after class with a heart stopping smile and declared, "That was so much fun, and now I'm ready to do it again!"

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

That Was Then...This Is Preschool!

I know that I'm overly sentimental, but I couldn't help posting this picture of my darling newborn Ashley almost four years ago...

Followed by the pictures I took today as she proudly sat down with me for her first day of "real" school.
A bona fide preschooler now, my firstborn daughter is racing through her early years with a zest and energy that makes me beam with pride at the same time I desperately want her to slow down now!!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Day In The Life!

The last few weeks I've been coming down with a case of severe baby fever. I don't know exactly why...I suppose it's a bunch of different things. Friends are at all different stages of pregnancies, from adorable early baby bumps, to counting down the last few days until the due date. Their pictures and stories make me smile. And it's fall now (I can say that now that it's September, although it's been feeling like it for several days), and that smell of change in the air makes me restless. (I know, I know, "restless" doesn't exactly equal "baby fever". But this time it does.) It's also the time of year when I reached the ends of all three of my pregnancies, and even having taken last year off I still perk up around now and think of babies. And finally, Ashley will start preschool next week. I'll be teaching her here at home, but still. It'll be an official beginning of a new stage in our lives, a signal of my little girl growing up and reaching into her future. And that's actually shaken me a little bit, which I didn't expect. Anyway, however the reasons come together, I have been thinking seriously about the possibility of us having another baby, maybe kinda soon.

Today my girls teamed up to dispel me of that notion!

Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I'm doing an 8 am workout with a bunch of ladies at the church, and the girls enjoy their playtime with our friend "Miss Shannon", at her house. We have to leave by 7:40 to get us all where we're going on time, so this morning I was busy working on our quick getaway when Bethany started crying... One sniff confirmed that a dirty diaper had entered the building, and one horrified look revealed that my daughter had decided on a taste test. (Um, excuse me? You think you are grossed out about that? I had to clean it up!!) Judging by the crying, she at least didn't approve of the taste, so if there is any justice in this world we will never have to deal with that again!

Having arrived slightly-but-not-too-terribly late and completed a great workout, I decided we would stop at the playground on our way home to enjoy some of this crisp fall weather. I've been trying to get outside with them everyday while the weather holds up, so yay me! However, we'd been there no more than 10 minutes when Hannah, halfway up the stairs on the playground equipment, suddenly shrieked and announced in a piercingly loud, distraught voice, "I'm going potty!!" There were at least 10 other people at the playground, giving me pitying looks. Sigh...double sigh....

Having dragged 3 disappointed little girls back to the car (you would think a mother of three would be prepared with extra outfits for a trip to the park, wouldn't you? Well, I'm afraid you would be wrong!), I was focused on getting Hannah out of her wet clothes, and missed seeing Bethany sneaking up to the front seat. Bethany is unbelievably obsessed with coffee, as in un.be.lievably! We have had more coffee incidents with her than I could fit into a blog post. Anyway, she managed to slip past me and grab my very full, very hot coffee. And yes, oh yes, she dumped it. Her jacket kept her from being burned, but her clothes were absolutely soaked and stained, and so were many, many things in the car. Triple sigh....

So back to that baby fever -- I think I can feel it cooling down right now. Thanks, girls!