Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Boy and His Dog

I don't remember which blog I read about removing tv from your daily diet, but it was a great idea!

Admittedly, the kids have watched a little bit of tv over the break from school, but not nearly as much as normal. It is really easy to take out tv during the regular school week, it is a bit of a challenge on weekends.

Poor Duncan has to miss his shows though. He is something of a couch potato and tv junkie. Here is Ethan and Duncan enjoying a rare show together...

Even Kasha (our cat) is sneaking a glimpse at the show. I don't remember what they watching but I place my bets on Batman: The Brave and the Bold. Duncan looks so tiny to me in these pics. I can't believe he is already a year old! Only one more year to grow, I hope he gets a bit bigger.

Monday, December 27, 2010


In my childhood home, my eclectic mother collected all sorts of cool stuff. She had an antique sewing machine (that doubled as a tv stand for many years). She had nearly every instrument imaginable (and learned how to play each one with some measure of fluency). She a plaster bust of Elvis. She had many cool wood carvings from all over the globe. She covered some walls with cubist art and other walls with impressionism. There was depression glass showcased in some great great grandmother's china cabinet. There was early American art in our kitchen (mostly Aunt Jemima and the Cream of Wheat guy). We had all manner of Native American art and artifacts (seeing as how my mother is nearly one half Native American - that was never as exotic as it sounds). And our record collection was like a radio station that played darn close to every genre on earth!

But these masks, were my favorite. They were in the front hall and the first thing you would see as you opened the front door. They are from Thailand and are meant to scare the bejeezus out of any and all evil spirits from entering the house. I think my dad didn't care for them. But I loved them! And finally, after all these years, my dad got his way and they left his house for good. So they could come to mine!

When my BFF Rhiannon came to visit, she brought them in her suitcase. Now it is my husband who dislikes them. Ah, the circle of life!

As you can see, I didn't hang them with great care, I'll go back and measure and hang some day when I have time for that. For now, I'm just so glad to get them on the wall of our loft!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Goings On at Our Casa

After Ethan's birthday party at Fiesta Farms, we had an after-party at our house that consisted of a group of men, a late night steak run, the bubba keg, poker and whiskey. There was a lot of testosterone.

The hot guy in the cowboy hat is my husband. ;-)


Some pictures of us hanging around the house.


I've been on a no-tv kick with the kids lately. Their imaginations are on fire! Here is Ethan in the bath tub. This bath was just for fun, not a nightly scrub down or anything. Any other parents out there who toss their kids in the bath to give them something to do?

Anyway, in this scene, the army guy is fixing to take the shark on a walk.


Both of my children inherited the night-owl gene. It was inevitable, both my husband and I are naturally night-owls. Unfortunately, Ethan also has the insomnia gene. Here he is - staying up with me in my office, well past midnight while I edited images in the thick of Christmas portrait season.

He was hungry too, so I warmed up asparagus. He was quite happy with that.

Learning all about the business so he can sign on. Gabriel is already learning the fundamentals of composition and a couple of photoshop tricks. One day it will be "Rebecca Lara and Sons".

You may have recognized Bigfoot in the above pictures. I have a thing with sock monkeys. Therefore, my children do too and they frequently request a new sock monkey. I love to make them and I have an enthusiastic crowd to receive them: its a win-win.


And he says he doesn't like this dog. Phht.

The other pictures are taken with my old Sony Alpha. This one is with my new T2i. Isn't it pretty? I didn't even adjust levels or curves or anything! AND we have black out curtains in our bedroom (because there is a street light right outside our window)(it is so annoying)(I wish I noticed what a problem it would pose before we bought the house)(but I do like my house). All that is to say that my lens is freaking awesome too.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Reading List

It has been a barrel of monkeys at our house over the last week, thanks to some adorable books from the library. It's Christmas Eve and perhaps a tad late for you to enjoy these books this year, but you can put them on your list for next year. Please comment and tell me what you think of the ones you have read!

The images are linked to the Amazon page for each book. Some of them have the "Look Inside" feature, if you are interested.

I love this llama and all this llama drama!

We own this book. The children aren't allowed to look at it without adult supervision. Each page is an intricate pop up depicting one of the books. Its absolutely gorgeous. And who doesn't have a soft spot for pop up books?

Not a Christmas book - but it has snow which seems very Christmasy to us southerners. It has a fun sing song cadence.

You should totally read every single Tacky book. He is the goofiest penguin in the world!

Santa Duck learns about giving.

Not as good as the first one but still very very cute.

The boys LOVE this book! Honestly, it is a little annoying to read over and over and over again. But the children really enjoy it.


This book is my absolute favorite Christmas book and I think I will (gasp!) buy it! It is so seriously adorable. I truly don't mind reading it 25 times an hour.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Ethan's Real Birthday

Shortly after Thanksgiving, we celebrated Ethan's 4th birthday. His party wasn't until the weekend after his day, because parties rarely are on the actual day. We had a fun night: a little cake, some gifts, a lot of laughing.

his favorite colors!

He came to the store with me, picked out his cake and his dinner: pizza and salad. I kid you not, salad was his idea. This is on a cool drawing we made together earlier in the day.

Thank you, Aunt Patty! She gave him this gift card in the biggest imaginable card - ever! It was so cool!

From Mamaw and Papa - but this is not the best part of their gift.

This is! This picture doesn't do it justice. They made a huge happy birthday sign, decorated the monkey with mardi gras beads and took a picture of them together. It was so cute. Only hours later did Duncan eat the monkey. I sewed him back up with orange yarn and he's good as new.

This is the present from Brandon and I. Ethan and Gabriel have played with this thing for hours and hours. At his party, several guests gave him accessories to go with it. Its quite literally worth its weight in gold. I so long to have a daughter, but this is kind of like a big Batman doll house! Good enough for me!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Rewind to Thanksy

Let's back up a little bit. After all, the happy meal incident was today but there are more pictures to catch up on.

Even posting the birthday party pics was getting a little ahead of myself.

Get in your hot tub time machine to the week of Thanksgiving. We went camping. We came home, we unloaded our gear, Brandon ran to the store while I laundered out camp fire smoke smelling clothes and for dinner we had (drum roll) steak frites!

It was soooooooo good!

The following day we awoke and I started cooking the sides for our Thanksgiving feast. B lounged about until it was time to dunk his turkey in the hot tub. It was worth the work!

After we ate.
(Yes, that is a PC laptop, Mac Book and iPad next to him)


Since we really went over board on the fall and Halloween crafts, there wasn't much left for Thanksgiving. Here are some things the kids colored (thank you Mamaw for sending these!)

Can you tell who colored which? Gabriel did the one on top. Ethan colored the one on bottom - all red except for one brown feather. That kid, I don't think I will ever figure him out!

Not so Happy Meal

Ethan got some vaccines today. It was very theatrical. So, to soothe his savage soul, he got McDonald's for lunch on the way home. We came in the door, I set him up at the table and went upstairs to get some things done. This is what I found when I came back down to the kitchen.

Ethan's Birthday Fiesta

We throw massive birthday parties for our kids. But lately we have been pondering if this is really worth it. So we decided that for Ethan's 4th birthday we would throw our last massive child's birthday party.

Ever since his 3rd birthday party, he has talked about his 4th birthday party. Every. Single. Day.

Long ago (around Ground Hog Day) he decided on a cowboy theme. After a lot of research we learned that it is crazy expensive to get a pony to a birthday party. For just a little bit more money, we could take the birthday party to the pony, and the goats, and the pigs, and the rabbits, and the giant tortoises, and the llamas....

Birthday boy with goats.

This one reminded me of Duncan.

Cowboy Soso arrives.

Gabriel having a conversation with a couple of eavesdroppers.

After all those months of talking about riding a horse, the birthday boy chickened out. But here is a picture of Sheriff Gabriel saddling up. You see how we can feel a little under appreciated for throwing these parties?

hay ride.

voila! the cake! made by my extraordinary cousin!