Sunday, December 8, 2013

Fun with Christmas pictures

"Alice, don't allow any emotion to show.  We'll look blank."

"Ok, now relax and emote."

Monday, November 25, 2013

Wild Girls

I'm not exactly sure how it started, but Alice and I have a game she likes to play called "Wild Girls".
This is the story.....

We are two girls who have lost our parents.  We live out in the woods (aka Alice's closet) and we have an odd way of dressing because our parents died when we were very young.  We think panties go our heads, leg warmers go on our arms, and socks go on our hands.
We steal toys and clothes from this man (Larry) who lives in a house near our woods.  He also has a dog we like to capture and take back to the woods with us to hang out.  Sometimes the man sees us and we run around madly and he chases us. He desperately wants to catch us and adopt us, but since we are so wild, he can't ever catch us.  So we keep sneaking into his house and stealing his stuff and taking his dog.
Alice is the older sister and takes care of me (mom) and we speak in a very primitive stunted language. "Me hungry" "Me like doggy" and "me cold". The little sister is afraid of the dark and Alice is always trying to comfort her little sister.
After several raids to "the mans" house, the forest (the closet) gets filled up with toys and clothes.

I always have to put a time limit on this game or Alice would want to play it for hours......

Saturday, November 23, 2013

First Go

Alice's first go lesson on a training board :-)

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Halloween 2013 (Daphne part 2)

Alice was Daphne for Halloween again this year, and was of course supper cute (orange wig and all).  Cristy dressed up like Velma (and won her office costume contest) and I wore a green v neck t-shirt and converse as a nod to my role as Shaggy.

Family friends live a few blocks away and their neighborhood is much better for trick-or-treating so we went out walking with them and their girls.  It was really nice.  Alice was much bolder this year and was running up to doors and saying her lines (benefit of acting classes?).  I was very proud of her.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Sleepy proclamations

Last night right before Alice fell asleep she says to me 
"Mom, when I grow up, if I discover a flower I'm going to name it Mom......but only if it's pretty"

Friday, September 13, 2013

starting kindergarten

Alice started kindergarten this year.

Mom takes her to class every morning, and dad picks her up from school each day.
Dad packs her lunch everyday, except Fridays. Friday is pizza day. All the kids order the pizza on Friday, so Alice asked to have the school lunch once a week on that day.

She is not a big fan of school yet. She would rather stay home with her dad, but who wouldn't?
She has learned the names of a few kids in class, and she tells us stories of how Jack gets in trouble each day :-)

She has asked to have new friends over for a play date, so hopefully we will get something scheduled soon. We have also checked into Girl Scouts for another social opportunity. At the Girl Scout rally Alice saw a girl from her school she has played with on the playground. We are very proud of her making new friends.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Morning Ipad Time

She's playing her new favorite My Little Pony game.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Thursday, July 18, 2013


Dressing up and putting on Princess makeup


Playing at the bouncy house

Friday, July 12, 2013

Alice loves the bookstore

Alice loves the bookstore, but she gets bored when dad starts looking at his "boring" not-kid stuff :-)

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Alice is into hamburgers

Took Alice to Red Robin for lunch today for some gourmet hamburgers.  She got a bacon cheeseburger and choc milk :-)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Watching shows and hugging puppies

Alice enjoying her morning show :-)

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Alice the artist

Alice loves to draw and she loves the Powerpuff Girls. One of her favorite things to do is search on Google Images for various characters, such as the Powerpuff Girls, My Little Ponies, Fairly Odd Parents, etc.... She will spend hours drawing the images on the website.
She wants to get her art out on the web for all to see, so here is one of her latest masterpieces.
Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup - THE POWERPUFF GIRLS!!!!!!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Adventure Kids

During the first week of summer Alice and I began telling each other a story.  We talked about the characters, what they looked like, what their skills and abilities were.  Alice provided lots of details while I guided it into a workable form.  We talked over back-stories.  Most of this was during our hours and hours of swinging every day, and while we would drive in my car.

We started telling a story about this group of kids that go on an adventure in a fantasy environment.  Alice named them the "Adventure Kids".  I carry the majority of plot lines but she has to make decisions for her character and respond to questions and other characters while in character.  So the stories are very interactive and anything is possible, to a degree.  We roll dice to see what happens when we feel like it but sometimes we get riffing on the story and don't bother.

Alice took to the mutual story telling right away.  She loves it.  We had some discipline issues initially because she would get upset when we would have to stop for dinner or she would beg for it at all times of the day :-)  We got past this quickly and we now have settled into a daily Adventure Kids session starting around 4 pm, usually running for 1 to 2 hours.

Lately she has started trying her hand at carrying the main story line.  She'll set up a conflict and have everyone react and discuss.  She'll ask me questions about my character and roll, etc.  So, lately I've been GM (i.e. Game Master) for one or two encounters and she runs the final encounter.

I love spending time with her doing this.  It is tiring keeping up with the pace of the story (we'll switch to pre-made adventures soon) but with her doing more its getting pretty fun.  She has creative and funny additions to stories and gets really animated acting out her characters.

This provides us with a great way to be creative together as well as a way to set up ethical dilemmas and talk through them - the game provides consequences to decisions, etc.  I'm really liking it as a tool to discuss difficult topics of behavior and leadership.  The main thing is that it is easy to keep her attention with the story - she loves it and loves building it as we go

UPDATE:  Oh yeah - we also get practice with numbers and subtraction/addition, along with new vocab words.  Probability is in there but I haven't started talking about it directly.

UPDATE:  We went by Great Hall Games in Austin this Wednesday, after our weekly lunch with Cristy, so she could pick out her own dice and dice bag (she wanted her own girly ones... she was tired of using the ones with "boy" colors :-).  She picked out a purple dice bag and has many sparkly dice of different colors.  I was so proud of her .

Super Hero

Alice loves to hear stories about when we were kids. Yesterday I told Alice about the neighborhood where I grew up. All the kids in the neighborhood would dress up as superheroes. We had Wonder Woman, Batman, Spider-Man, Electra Woman and Dinah Girl, etc... Me and my friend Amy loved the Kroft Superstars show Electra Woman and Dinah Girl. We though Dinah Girl was cute so we both played Dinah and made her little sister play the older Electra Woman :-). There is a picture of this in existence, and I will try to remember to post it later. 
Since this story, Alice has wanted to dress up as a superhero. Alice loves the Powerpuff Girls, so we dressed her up in her PPG tee, with tights (because all super heroes wear tights), a cape and Bubbles style ponytails.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Summer Camp Part 1

Alice's last day at Bluebonnet was the week before our vacation in May. We decided Alice would stay home with dad for the summer and attend a couple of summer camps each month. The weeks she is not in a camp has been dubbed Daddy Camp. Dad will have to blog about their specific daddy camp events, but from what I can tell, daddy camp is a hit :-)
Alice's first summer camp was acting camp. The play they would be doing was Annie. I was worried Alice would be shy and have a hard time with new teachers and kids, but Alice surprises me daily :-) She LOVED acting camp. Even though she had a small part in the play, she sang loud and proud in all the musical numbers. She also learned most everyone else's part too. The week after acting camp Alice would be a one girl show re-enacting pretty much the entire play.
The next week was gymnastics camp. This camp was only half day, but Alice did great with new teachers and kids. She defiantly liked acting camp better, but this was fun too. We did go ahead and sign her up for another acting camp in August.
The next few weeks are daddy camp weeks. Then we have dance and art camps. Look for Summer Camp  Part 2 later in the summer :-)

UPDATE:  Weeks later and Alice still breaks out in songs from this play while we are driving.  She will also go through all the lines for all the characters of the play on occasion.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Practicing her lines

Alice is Piper (orphan) in Annie during acting camp this summer.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Cupcake survives!

I know the last post was doom and gloom, and we really were mentally and emotionally getting ready to tell our little man goodbye, but Cupcake turned a corner a few days after the last post.

After the weekend, we took him back to the vet for fluids and evaluation. The vet really didn't expect to see Cupcake back from the weekend. He thought he would crash and that would be the end of Cupcake, but he surprised the vet! His numbers were still high, so the vet game him another antibiotic to try. We were still waiting for test results, although we did get a positive from one test for Rickettsial, a tick born disease.

Monday night, Cupcake began to act a fraction more like himself. So we gave him his medications and crossed our fingers. The next day he was even better. On Wednesday we finally got our diagnosis for Liptospirosis. And so a THIRD antibiotic was added to the regiment in addition to an antacid for upset tummy, and appetite enhancer, and a phosphate binder (since his kidneys are still not working).

So far his lasting symptoms are reduced appetite, some bladder trouble (ie potty accidents) and he drinks too much water and then throws it up (sometimes). He is currently banned from sleeping with Alice until he gets the bladder back under control since Liptospirosis can be transmitted to people through urine, but he is pretty much back to his old self. He plays, he runs and lays out in the sun. We are thankful he made it through.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Our Little Man

We thought Alice and Cupcake Bailey would grow up together, but things don't always turn out as you had planned. Our happy, playful energetic puppy started feeling poorly on Saturday April 13th. We thought it was just a virus or something and he seemed to perk up a little by Monday, so we held off taking him to the Vet. But by Wednesday, we knew he was still sick and had eaten little in the past 2 days. Larry took him to the vet that morning and spent about 3 hours there waiting for test results. They told us he needed to stay in the hospital overnight so they could give him fluids and antibiotics. We went to see him the next day and were told the antibiotics were not helping so he needed to stay at the vet and we would see again the next day. We visited again on Friday and still received bad news. His white blood cell count was still high. Their general diagnosis was kidney failure, however the cause remains unknown.

We brought him home for the weekend to take care of him ourselves versus taking him to the Emergency clinic for care over the weekend. The only thing they could do for him we could not was give him IV fluids. We know he still feels really bad, but he has tried to keep with some of his routines. He spent a lot of time laying in the sun in the backyard, and Sunday morning he padded back to Alice's room to snuggle in bed under the covers for a while.

Yesterday Alice crawled into his crate with him to give him a hug and whispered into his ear "I've never told you this before, but I love you". She has actually told him this many times :-) She knows he is sick, but is struggling with really understanding what that means.

We are trying to make the most out of our days with Cupcake, but we all know our time is short.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Walking Cupcake Bailey

Alice and daddy took cupcake Bailey on a walk around the neighborhood.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Throne Room

About a week ago, I realized that Alice had stopped inviting me to the bathroom with her.

Ever since she became potty trained (a few months before she turned 3), Alice has always requested an escort with her potty trips. At first it was me or her dad. Over the past year, Alice has slowly stopped inviting her dad, and even started requesting I shut the door so dad couldn't see her go potty. Although dad was still invited 'in a pinch' it has eventually become only when mom was not available.

About a week ago, I realized that I hadn't been invited to gab in the toilette for a few days....
I'm not sure how I feel about it. I'm glad she is growing up and becoming more independent, but I'm sad she is growing up and becoming more independent.

Alice will be starting kindergarten in a few months. I'm already feeling anxious for her regarding this next step in growing up. Soon she will be reading, wanting to spend time with her friends more, and then heading off to college :-)

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Something I'm not looking for

Scene:  Alice is working her way through a large pile of stuffed animals making a large mess in the process.

Dad:  "What are you looking for?"

Alice: "I don't know."


Alice:  "There might be something I'm not looking for in here."

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Alice in comicland

We visited Austin Books today and Alice met the Hulk.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Alice's tease

For at least a year Alice has loved to tease her daddy when she sees him in his boxers.
Once glimpsed Alice will start chanting " I see your boxers, I see your boxers". I have been meaning to blog this tease for a while. The reason I finally sat down to write this is because Alice started teasing her dad tonight telling him he is a poo-grammar. Her cute play on words.


Alice received some Legos for her birthday (which was a month ago)
She finally decided she wanted to put the new set together.
Great daddy-daughter activity :-)

Friday, February 1, 2013

Disney Trip 2013 - DAY 5

This was the last day of our trip - this evening we fly back home to Texas, but we have several hours in the park to make a few more memories.

We started the day off again with breakfast on the Tomorrowland Terrace. On our way to ride Thunder Mountain (again) we stopped off to meet Tinkerbell and Periwinkle.


We rode Thunder Moutain and then rode the Jungle Cruise.  It is the same as I remember it over 30 years ago...the same goes for the Haunted Mansion....I guess you don't mess with perfection :-)

We finally met Tiana before we settled down for lunch to wait for the show that Minnie and the Princesses performed in front of the castle.  Alice had seen a little of it the day before and wanted to see it from the beginning, so we found a bench in front of the castle, ate our corndogs and waited for the show.  We didn't know, but a street parade was also scheduled right before the show, so this kept Alice entertained while we waited. Alice danced with Minnie and Mickey and joined a conga line (so did mom :-)

We knew time was growing short so we rode our favorite rides one more time, and headed for the park entrance, but one last parade drew Alice's attention so we stopped and watched before we left.  It was a great way to end our trip!



Thursday, January 31, 2013

Disney Trip 2013 - DAY 4

Day 4 we made our way back to the Magic Kingdom

This was an early park admission day for guest staying at the DisneyWorld Resorts, so we entered the park early and had our breakfast on the Tomorrowland Terrace.  Dad had a breakfast croissant and Alice and I shared a plate of beignets. 

Alice really wanted to go to Thunder Mountain first, but only Fantasyland and Tomorrowland were open early, so we decided to try Tomorrowland first.  Since Alice seemed to like roller coasters, we pursuaded Alice to try Space Mountain.  BIG mistake!  Alice did NOT like Space Mountain.  She did not like having to sit by herself and she did not like the ride being totally in the dark.  So now Alice does not want to ride ANYTHING that is related to space! Suffice it to say - Alice was NOT screaming on this ride (see quote from DAY 3!)

We did go on the Buzz Lightyear ride and the Space Orbiter, but after that, we left Tomorrowland for good and headed back to Frontierland and Thunder Mountain! Alice had been talking about Thunder Mountain and the Haunted Mansion since the first day and was eager to get back to her favorites!

This day was also full of character autographs. We started the day with Alice and the White Rabbit and then met some of the Princesses again, and we finally got to meet Rapunzel!

Dinner was at the Polynesian Resort where Alice selected drinks from the bar for mom and dad based on color and accessories (a backscratcher for mom and a pink light up drink for dad). They had a few games for kids to play and everyone got a lei.

Since this was our last night at the Magic Kingdom, we made our way back to the park after dinner so we could ride our favorites again and watch the fireworks display within the park.

Alice quote

"When I'm not screaming I'm freaking out"

After 3rd time on everest ride

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Disney Trip 2013 - DAY 3

Day 3 we were scheduled for Animal Kingdom

We started the day off at Tusker House for breakfast.  This was a character breakfast where we got to meet Donald, Goofy and FINALLY, we met Mickey!

After breakfast we went on the Kilimanjaro Safari where we saw many animals I can't even remember much less name, but we did see Rhino's, Crocodiles, Giraffes, Flamingos, a Lion and Ostriches.

Next we made our way to Expedition Everest, a Yeti themed roller coaster.  We rode this 3 times!  Alice said she liked most of it, but the big drop freaked her out a little. Her quote was "When I'm not screaming, I'm freaking out :-)" So this is how we gaged her fun meter for the rest of the trip.... If Alice wasn't 'screaming' she was a little scared - GOOD TO KNOW!

We spent a little time in Dinoland USA where Alice got to 'dig up' dinosaur bones, we also rode the DINOSAUR ride twice. On the Dinosaur ride we were to ride a vehicle back in time and try to bring back a live dinosaur with us. The first time we rode it, we got stuck on the ride for about 10 minutes.  The second time we didn't have the glitch, but Alice was disappointed both times because she though the dinosaur would be in the vehicle with us, although we did see 'video feed' of the dinsosaur roaming the facility ;-)