Birthday Weekend

>> Sunday, March 29, 2009

This weekend was filled with birthday parties. First my niece Natalie turned ONE! It's a very exciting time for her and her family....

Here is the Birthday Girl!

Alayna is getting pointers from Daddy on how to hit her first pinata! She was very skeptical of this game. :P

Natalie's big brother Carlos had no troubles giving that lady bug a whack!

Eli practicing his T-ball skills on his turn up to bat!

Walker has had lots of practice with busting up pinatas. I think he's had one at every one of his bday parties.

The goods have been let free!!!!!

The birthday girl all partied out...thanks for a great time Natalie!!!




Our 2nd party of the weekend was my Dad's. He turned 58 on the 21st but he had been sick so we had a belated bday party for him today.

As promised here is a picture of the cake I made for him. It was a chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting. Mighty Tasty..... :P

Our birthday boy! He was already prepared with his glass of milk to go with his cake..classic Dad!

I think he is daydreaming about his birthday wish here.

After all the hamburgers, hot dogs, and cake we could stuff in our bellies we all went outside to give this kite a try. It was more difficult than you would think. My brother Boog running skillfully with the kite in one hand and trying not to spill his beer in the other....at some point that beer did get spilled. :P LOL!

All the kids going crazy over watching their dads trying to get this dragon into the air!

Papa coming over to give his thoughts about how to get this thing up.

And for a blissful, magical, proud moment they did get that dragon to fly!!!!!!! (Can you hear the Hallelujah music?)

But.......it didn't last! Darn tree.... :P


It was a fun weekend!

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Herberger Theatre

>> Saturday, March 21, 2009

OK first I want to say that I do love my blog. It took me a while to get it set up but now that I have one it helps me to keep track of our lives. However, I'm starting to feel a bit torn between posting things here and on Face Book. I'm having a hard time getting my family to follow my blog so I post on F.B. cuz "everyone" is there. But I love to blog so I post things here too...are you seeing my plight??? (sigh) So if you see my postings on both sites, I apologize for the redundancy, but know that I appreciate you taking the time to read up on The Kitch's! :)


So on with today... We've been on Spring Break all week and honestly really did nothing. Yesterday I was desperate for some entertainment so I hopped online to see what was going on in town.....and what did I find you ask?

Drum Roll!!!!!

"Seussical The Musical". It was playing at the Herberger Theatre in downtown Phoenix. I personally have only been down to the Herberger a few times and seen matinees for school field trips. The shows I've seen there were good, as far as school fieldtrip level of quality, but nothing like today's show!

We took all three of the kids...yes Alayna too! :) And we "all" loved it! It was so entertaining, up beat, great music, the youth actors were very polished. It was money well spent. We will definitely go back again for another play.






The Herberger Theatre - Downtown Phoenix.




Our program book. :)



So before the show, and intermission we had some time to kill and I just got a new camera for Valentine's Day, and a new lens for it just a few weeks ago, and I thought it was a perfect opportunity to try it out. I think I love this new hobby and I definitely love the way this camera takes pictures. I have a lot to learn still, but it's so much fun! It will be hard to go back to a "studio"! :P


Here are our "Three Amigos" hamming it up for me..just the way I like it!




Does it get much sweeter than seeing your children love each other? Eli adores his baby sister. The feeling is mutual as you can see! Melts their Momma's heart.....



Alayna was teasing Eli trying to get him to kiss her..then she would pull away before he could get to her. She's a feisty one!




I call this picture..."Urban Alayna"! Those blue eyes are just to die for.




Daddy telling Alayna something very shocking! :P





I just LOVE this picture of them!





Eli is looking quite handsome and thoughtful.




This picture just really reminds me of the young man Walker is turning into. He looks so grown up here. Love that kid!



This picture was really hard to take. It still didn't turn out the way I had hoped but hey, all 3 of them are in it and they are all looking in the same general direction..and that's as good as it's going to get! :)



Our little princess!




What a character this one is!






Day Dreamer...


I had to get into at least one shot. (Thank you Jared!) But try to ignore the horrible hair day I was having. Looks like I have a small animal laying on my head. Can't win them all..... :(

After the play we headed over to Dairy Queen for some ice cream.




Eli not wasting anytime on his Strawberry Blizzard!





Alayna digging in after she thumbed through the most interesting newspaper article!






Walker very intensely getting to the bottom of that Mint Oreo Blizzard!

It was a wonderful day out as a family. We all needed it after being stuck at home all week. Next time you can't think of something to do...try a musical! :)

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Celebrate!

>> Sunday, March 15, 2009

Everyone who knows me, knows I love to celebrate my birthday. This can be a challenge for my dearest husband Jared. But he usually fares well since I just tell him what I want to do every year! :p

Since I love my birthday, I want my family to love theirs. The best way I can help them have a great birthday, is to make them a cake with "LOOOOOVE" in it! Some years are more successful than others but I thought I'd share some of the past years' Celebration Cakes with all of you......

Dig in!!! :)


Walker:




This was Walker's 1st birthday. His nursery was decorated in Bumble Bees ...... so that's where I got my inspiration for his cake. Not too bad for my first "theme" cake. But I definitely could improve.



This is Walker's 2nd birthday cake. All boys love Choo-Choo-Trains! Thomas was huge in our house that year!


This was Walker's 3rd birthday. Race cars are cool!



Walker's 4th birthday was a challenge. We had just gotten home from the hospital with Eli after he'd been admitted for 2 weeks with Intussusception. So I had to do a more simple cake. It had Spider-man on it and he was happy just the same! :)




This was Walker's baptism cake. The focus of this cake was more about the taste than the look. He LOVES blueberries so I had to create a blueberry cake for him. I thought it was going to be gross....but it actually was pretty darn tasty. Everyone complimented on how good it was, so I was thrilled it turned out well. It's always a bit scary trying a new recipe on your guests!!!!


Eli:

Eli's nursery was decorated in giraffes. So for his 1st birthday I did this Carousel Cake. I love how excited he looks in the background ...waiting for his slice!



Eli's 2nd birthday cake. Old McDonald Had a Farm! (sing it with me) EEEII, EEII, OOOOO! (Or in this case.... EEEli, EEli, OOO! ) This was a fun one to make. I felt like I was back in elementary school creating a diorama or something. I love the little rabbit on the side of the barn chillin out, and the pigs in their mud pit!



Not every year is a winner with a full blown cake. Life happens ya know.... This was Eli's 3rd birthday. Simple and sweet "Strawberry" (his favorite flavor) cupcakes! MMMMM!!


Alayna:

This was Alayna's 1st birthday cake. Her nursery was decorated in Sunbonnet Sue, but her baby shower cake was done with her on it, so I took the liberty of using one of my favorite characters for her cake. Tinkerbell!!!!
This was also my first attempt at using fondant. It turned out pretty well, but I can tell where I could have done better. They say practice makes perfect. :)




Alayna's 2nd birthday cake. Anyone that knows my little Laney Bug knows about her bizarre and sometimes disturbing obsession with shoes. So I only found it fitting to make her a Shoe Cake for her birthday!

Mom:


This was the most recent cake I've made for my Mom's 59th birthday. It was a German Chocolate cake. It was pretty and tasty. I think I'm coming along very nicely!
My Dad's birthday is next week.....you'll just have to wait in suspense until then!!!!!










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Brush with Fame...

>> Friday, March 13, 2009

May 31st 2008 we went to Disneyland for summer vacation. It was the 3rd day of our trip and we were having a wonderful time! We had spent most of the day at Disney and we wanted to check out California Adventure for the rest of the day.




This picture looks like just a mass of people in the esplanade but the guy in the middle between the letters "o" and "r" is our friend Dave. :)

As we walked over we stood in line, as many folks do, waiting their turn to get through the turnstiles. We were chatting away when I looked at the family ahead of us.

I looked....I looked again...then.........

I realized where I had seen the girl in that family before. I whisper to Jared as quickly and quietly as I could, since I didn't want to draw attention.

Vanessa: "Jared isn't that Brooke White from American Idol." (Season 7)

Jared: " I don't know it sort of looks like her but it's hard to tell with that hat."

Vanessa: "That's totally her....I know it is...that's her mom and husband!"

We casually as possible wait our turn to hand our tickets to the Cast Member....we briskly walk past her and her family to get a better view...and like Paparazzi we snap away trying to capture our moment of our brush with fame before another Cast Member whisks them away to we have no clue where!!!!




Brooke White is the one in the hat, sunglasses and camera around her neck. Her mom is in the purple shirt.

Here you can also see her husband standing behind her with sunglasses and a backpack, and the very "important" Cast Member from Disney in the plaid vest on the right, sent to take them away.
We didn't have the guts to approach her. We felt a little star struck and didn't know if it would irritate her to have her vacation interrupted with our geekiness! But it was neat to stand literally inches from her and capturing proof that we really did see her in person!


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Eli's Kindergarten Trip to Schnepf Farm

>> Thursday, March 12, 2009

Eli's class went to Schnepf Farm today for a field trip. The weather was perfect and the kids were buzzing with excitement!



Eli and his friend Paris. Cheezin it up for the camera!





Eli and Dusty the 40 year old Donkey... He looks like he needs some lovin. Poor old guy!




Now I don't remember this Holstein's name, but he was THE BIGGEST cow I've ever seen in my life. He had to stand over 6 ft. tall. He was enormous!



Most of us have been to Schnepf Farm before for their Pumpkin and Chili Festival in October. But have you ever been there and picked your own fruits and vegetables?

Yup! You too can go and get your very own locally grown, pesticide free fruits and veg. through out the year. They grow peaches, plums, apricots, corn (fed to animals only), and potatoes for potato chips. That's right! Po-ta-to Chips....mmmmm! It takes a special kind of spud to make a good chip. It has to have a low sugar content so that it fries up nice and golden brown. Neat fact huh!?! :) They also grow spinach, beets, broccoli, green onions, radishes, you name it! We were lucky enough to give it a try today. It was a lot of FUN!


Eli with his very "baby" broccoli. Most of the veg. was just barely ready to pick. But still fun to do!


I'm thinking in this picture he got "weeds" not vegetables. But he looked so proud. I had to take his picture with his prized possession!



Here he's getting some radishes....Grandma's house here we come with your hand picked radishes!



We found our long lost lady bug friend "Cheezy" while on our trip today. He comes to visit us sometimes. It's always good to catch up over the long breaks with him. (There is a back story as you can tell to Cheezy the Lady Bug...maybe another day for that! :) )
It was a fun day and we learned a lot about the farm. Thanks Eli for sharing it with us!





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