26 February 2011

Fun Fair

One of our favorite days of the year at the boy's school is the annual Fun Fair. The school is open for 4 hours, packed with games, a bounce house, silent auctions, cake walk, bingo, food and pie in the face.
C absolutely loves the game area. He's more of an instant gratification kind of guy, so the candy he wins suits him just fine.

H, on the other hand, prefers the cake walk.  He'd rather risk it all for the big prize. Here he is with Brian (and the kids down the street who used to babysit for us -- in green -- I adore that family). Like all the other years, H won us some dessert for tonight. Yahoo!

But the biggest event of the entire day is the pie in the face. Just check out that crowd. They mean serious business.

This year, the staff did something a little different -- a dance off. The New Beat consisted of five of the new teachers.

Beat Street was the gym teacher, a forth grade teacher, the principal (he's second from right, and just an awesome, awesome guy), the district teacher mentor. And not in the photo above, the school engineer. Who definitely surprised all of us with some pretty amazing break dance moves.

Finally, there was The Rejects -- the three third grade teachers and a kindergarten teacher (H's teacher is on the far right).

This clearly is the only school I have experience with, but I think it's pretty amazing. How many do you know of who's teachers and principal would do something like this? And I'll tell you, it raises a ton of money! The New Beats won the dance-off, taking home the prized trophy.  But The Rejects received the most money, earning them ... the pie in the face. 

Needless to say, H thought it was pretty great seeing his teacher get a pie thrown in her face.

24 February 2011

23 February 2011



I'm not sure I remember the last time the boys had a sick day. Sure, they get colds. But typically the knock you down illnesses pass our house up. Not this time! Since Sunday, H has been under the weather. He's had a high fever for three days. Then this morning, C woke up sick. I'm honestly not sure I've ever taken the boys to the doctor outside of their annual physicals (and a couple random times), but I'm so glad I did. Both have strep. Nice. The good thing is, they are getting it out of the way at the same time. And besides the occasional arguments they still need to fit in, pretty much, they are mostly laying around doing nothing. (By the way, don't you love where C has his left hand? Great.) The good news is, they are on the road to recovery.

22 February 2011

20 February 2011

Annual Holiday Dinner at Jakes


Unfortunately, none of my pictures from our Annual Holiday Dinner turned out great. And I've decided that never, ever, should my profile be photographed. But it is what it is. Whatevs. (Actually, there was one good one of the girls. But after several glasses of wine, I may have accidentally deleted it.) Every year around the holidays, we get together with Scott, Ali, Andrew and Shelly for dinner at Jake's. We get the same table around the fire, have a great meal, and enjoy each other's company. We look forward to it every year. Clearly, this year's event was postponed by a couple months. But I'm so glad we still got it on the calendar. And if anything, it just means we don't have to wait as long until the next time.

18 February 2011

I Think This Is Awesome

Midget & Giant, create by Ryuji Nakamura, is a miniature paper model house that goes over an iMac iSight camera. (via swissmiss, via Unplggd, via Spoon Tamago)

17 February 2011

Inspiration Files :: Australian "Beach" Home

I have to admit -- I've become completely obsessed by wooden ceilings. Pair that with one of my all time loves, concrete, and you've got yourself quite a winning combination, in my opinion. Of course, being walking distance from a beach doesn't hurt either. (This Australian dream home could be yours too.) (via Desire to Inspire)

16 February 2011

Art by C: Pinchpot


Our growing collection of the boys clay art may quite be one of my favorite possessions.

15 February 2011

Boys in a Box


As soon as the boys found this box yesterday, they started drawing on it and cutting it up. They've turned it into a battle ship. They spent most of the evening in their boat, and H even read a book (about "true story" haunted houses) to C.

Art by C: Alligator


The boys art teacher posts their artwork online, so I had seen this alligator before. But I had no idea how large it was until C brought it home in his backpack. FYI - Storm is a 70 pound lap dog. This alligator is really quite an amazing thing.

14 February 2011

Valentine's Loot


Remember how exciting Valentine's Day was as a kid? H even went so far as to say that he had one of the best days ever. I'm sure it helped that the third grade went bowling today. When they came back, they had art, then they passed out their Valentines. (Both boys gave out Fun Dips.) C had the big Valentine's party on Friday, so it was pretty much a regular day for him. But waiting for them when they got home was a package from Grandma, which just topped off their most excellent day.

13 February 2011

Celebrating Valentine's Day


We're not big celebrators of Valentine's Day. Never have been. But it is fun to do something a little special. Since it's Monday tomorrow, and the Mr. is out of town, we decided to do a little family dinner tonight. I hung hearts from the kitchen light, lit some candles, and enjoyed a night with my guys. Perfect.

Czech Plaza with Friends


Chili Night was on the calendar for a few weeks. Unfortunately, Chris Frig came down with a nasty stomach bug after just getting home from Mexico, and our plans needed to shift. Czech Plaza is one of those places you may just drive by and not give it too much thought. Both the Elsmo's and Penny had been there before, but we hadn't, and were so excited when Plan B brought us there. We started with enormous beers. Not bad. I had the duck and roasted pork dinner, with dumplings, sauerkraut, rye bread and absolutely not one single green item on my plate. Yum. By the time dessert was coming (it's included with the dinners), we were tired and full, so they sent each family home with a little container of strawberry cake and kolaches. I've been feeling very high-strung lately, and probably wasn't the best company, but it is what I needed. A fun night hanging out with friends. 

11 February 2011

Hearts and Hundreds


Today was Hearts and Hundreds Day in C's classroom. They celebrated 100 days of school, and Valentine's Day. It was a big to-do. I decided last minute to sneak out and volunteer in the classroom a bit. Probably not the best idea because I'm swamped at work and I felt very over-extended today. But, you know what? Everything I had to get done, got done. And if there is one lesson I've learned over the course of the years, it is that this all goes by way too fast. H, in 3rd grade, is already at the point that they rarely need parents to help out anymore. The sad thing is, I missed out on most of his stuff (I've only chaperoned one field trip), thinking that some day, I'd be able to be there more. So while I still don't feel like I can take on room parent, I do try to be there as much as I can for days like this. Anyhow, the kids were all wearing their hundreds hats, had way too much sugar, and were absolutely adorable. It was a fun afternoon with my littlest.

3D by H


10 February 2011

C's Day


Waking Up ... School ... Bed

09 February 2011

Blooming Branches


It is SO cold. I had to run an errand before heading into work. Typically, I'm totally happy taking the L everywhere, but today was just downright miserable waiting for the train to come. Around the time I finally started dethawing, it was time to head back out to come home again. Brrrrr! It's especially on days like this, that I love having little reminders of spring around the house. Only a couple more months.

08 February 2011

Gabriel Dawe

It snowed again last night, so I felt the need to look for a little color. Could stare at these all day. Gorgeous installations made out of g├╝termann thread, wood and nails by Gabriel Dawe. (via swissmiss, images courtesy of gabriel dawe)

07 February 2011

Super Bowl XLV


We were a house divided, with the boys cheering for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Brian and I for the Green Bay Packers. Honestly, I really don't think I understand football at all. Never have. But I do like Super Bowl Sunday. I think it mostly has to do with the junk food and commercials. This year we had the Elsmo's over for an impromptu football party. We ate pulled-pork nachos, bacon and cheese wrapped tater tots with tabasco, chicken wings and Bugles with Cheese Whiz and sun-flower seeds brought by none other than our guest, inspired by H because he loves them so much. Who am I kidding -- we think they are great. Seriously, give it a try. Basically nothing we ate was good for us, except the celery I served with the wings. Brian made Venezuelan chicken and avocado sandwiches. Those would have been good for us, but we were all too full to eat them. Although, I did enjoy a great lunch today. We ended the gluttony with arroz con leche which is one of my all time favorite desserts. And of course, the Packers ended up winning, which made for a pretty great evening.

05 February 2011

The place we go when we need some Vitamin D


The Oak Park Conservatory. It's four blocks away and such a great little getaway.