Happy Easter!

Happy Easter to all our friends and family! We would have loved to celebrate with family, but since distance kept us apart, we present to you a quick recap of our Easter happenings here in Durham. Like tradition dictates, we began by dressing in our Easter best and trying to take an Easter photo before heading to church. Penelope hasn't been a big fan of the camera as of late, so even though we tried our hardest to capture one of her trademark smiles, we were mostly unsuccessful.

Mommy and P before church

Daddy and P

In celebration of Easter, Penelope proudly toted a beautiful peony from our garden to church

And, much to her mother's dismay, insisted that the curb next to the street and a utility pole was the perfect place for an Easter portrait.

After church we enjoyed a simple brunch together, where Penelope was thankful that I don't eat meat so that she could steal the bacon off of my plate. 

Then we sipped coffee while watching Penelope explore the restaurant's back patio. You would think that this little girl who was decked out her frilly pink poofy dress (thanks DeDe and Poppy!) would go smell the flowers or prance around the patio furniture. Not my Penelope. Instead, she went straight to dig in the rocks.

The photo below might have been a great Easter picture, but I fear the muddy hands and dirty fingernails sort of ruin it.

Hard at work sorting rocks with Daddy.

After a much needed nap, it was time for the Easter egg hunt!

Close up of the bedazzled sticker leg: a new Easter tradition
The upside of being the only participant in an egg hunt--you get to have all of the eggs!

The upside of hosting your child's first Easter egg hunt: you can only put three jelly beans in each egg and make the rule that two of the jelly beans in each egg must be given to Mommy and Daddy and your child is still ecstatic that she gets to eat one jelly bean every time she open an egg!

"Can I eat it?" 

And so ends our family's Easter celebration.


A Cupcake Story

Once upon a time there were two little girls who loved playing with each other more than anything else.

Their friendship ran deep. But their mutual love of cupcakes ran even deeper.

Then, one day, tragedy struck.

"Look! My cupcake!"

Chora then did what any good friend would do.

She gave up her own cupcake for the happiness of her friend.

You could call it cupcake altruism.

Penelope was quick to demonstrate her gratefulness.


And again,

And again.

Until Chora got a little annoyed with all the gratefulness 

and told Penelope to just focus on eating her cupcake.

The End.


Baking with Mommy

Penelope helped me make cupcakes for her birthday party. It took twice as long as normal to have a miniature helper, but it was worth it! Penelope did a really good job of holding the measuring cups and pouring the ingredients in the bowl, and she thought the mixer was absolutely hilarious--of course she got all serious when the camera came out. We made red velvet cupcakes, but since we were short on red food coloring, they turned into more of a pinky-mauve color than red.
Penelope was in heaven when I let her lick the beaters. (That has always been my favorite part of baking!)
The end results were pretty tasty too!


It's Party Time--Rain or Shine

...or tornado warnings!

Penelope's 2nd birthday picnic quickly turned into an indoor celebration when the area was pummeled by thunderstorms and tornadoes as her party was about to begin. (No worries--we weren't directly hit and no damage was done near us.) Thanks to the party guests who braved the weather we had lots of fun celebrating inside, and we even got a bit of sunshine by the time the party was over!

For Penelope, the hardest part of having a birthday party was waiting for the guests to arrive (and keeping out of the cupcakes and presents before they came).

P watching the downpour and keeping a lookout for party guests.
Then chanting "Chora! Chora!" when she saw her best friend's car pull up.
Ready to welcome her guests.
Soon enough everyone had arrived, and it was time to be serenaded with "Happy birthday"
and figure out how to blow out those two candles.
"Yay for me!"
Then it was on to the presents
After opening a couple presents, Penelope had trouble focusing on the rest of the gifts. She just wanted to stop and play with her new things!

This was the last photo that was taken during the party because after this semi-calm moment of playing together all chaos broke out and suddenly kids were yelling and running in circles around the house--I guess that is the nature of 2-year-old birthday parties and the advantage of having a party in the park! Maybe next year.
Happy birthday Penelope!
We love you!


Happy Birthday!

Happy 2nd birthday sweet little Penelope! 

You've been telling us you're two for the past six months, and now you're finally right. These past two years have flown by, and you have sure done a good job of keeping us on our toes!

You talk a mile a minute these days, and you have all sorts of funny expressions that you like to exclaim, your most recent favorite being "Oh my goodness!" You love to sing songs, and "The Wheels on the Bus," "Baa, Baa, Black Sheep," "Rock-a-bye Baby" and the "ABC's" are your current favorites. You finally stopped calling everything "blue" and can name most colors (or, "cuttors" as you like to call them"). You love to play in the sand box, slide down the big slide, throw balls, and collect rocks in your spare time. You enjoy rough-housing with your dad, but you are scared to death of the "wormies" outside, which are really just seeds from the trees. You are an adventurous eater and love most fruits and vegetables and (much to your mother's chagrin) have even started to eat meat. Bedtime is your favorite time of the day, mostly because it is the only time you get to have your beloved paci's. (You don't know it yet, but you're going to have to break that habit soon!) You've been growing like a weed, and we've been struggling to keep you in clothes lately. You like to throw tantrums when you don't get your way, but you preface most every request with "please", and you give the best kisses and the biggest hugs. 

Happy birthday! We love you Lil' P!

It has been two amazing years with you in our lives.