Thursday, April 24, 2014

Easter Feasting


There are few things as pretty as a clean home ready for guests!  I have been trying to only make three things for any given event, but this Easter I cheated and made four.  Challah bread, deviled eggs, leg of lamb, and a ham.  Ben actually did the crux of the work on the deviled eggs, so I guess that makes three afterall.  Who doesn't love deviled eggs?

And of course our guests brought enough delicious side dishes to create a veritable feast!


A true southern lady once taught me the best way to entertain.  Get all of your food started ahead of time, and then right before the guests arrive, set the table with a glass of wine in hand.  The menu doesn't always cooperate, but it definitely makes for some relaxed entertaining when it does!  Only these days, I need a professional baby holder in order to accomplish anything, and I managed to find the most handsome one around, complete with bow tie and straw hat.


Our welcoming committee.  No, no, actually, he was writhing in pain over having eaten too much candy, remember?  I was pretty much just holding him and his belly full of candy in my arms.  I am happy to report that he is now feeling entirely better and doesn't understand why I won't let him binge eat the rest of his Easter candy.


A few days before Easter, we decided to go ahead and invite a few friends who might be still looking for a place to go.  Thinking our house was not very high on the list of cool places to go on Easter, we figured only one or two people would probably accept, but each and every one of them came!  Over twenty people, spanning three generations, fit around a table in our tiny little house.  I must admit, for a moment I was a little nervous we wouldn't have enough food, but there was plenty: leftovers, even.

Joining Like Mother, Like Daughter, for Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Lily's Birthday Story

"I turned five yesterday!  And I got to have whatever I wanted for dinner.  I had macaroni and cheese, fruit, and I had chocolate cupcakes, and that's all I had.  I got a new bike that was pink with princesses on it and also I got two cards.  I got one from Aunt Elisabeth, and I got one from Omi.  I learned really quickly in one day how to ride my bike.  I was a very fast learner and I had lots of things to say about my princess bike.  Mine sister Zosia really liked my princess bike.  She wanted to get a double bike and she wanted it to be pink for her birthday.  And also I loved my princess bike and Daddy taught me how to learn riding on my princess bike.  I played with Addison, mine friend, and I had lots of fun, and I goed to my friend Emma's house, and also I had lots of fun playing with my two sister babies, Dorothy and Clara.  There was lots to say about mine birthday.  The end."

There you have it!  Lily's birthday, in her own words.  She is strong, confident, sweet, and the most generous soul you will ever meet.  And a bit of a daddy's girl.  Ben, who usually leaves birthday stuff to me, had strong feelings: Lily needed a new bike.  When I suggested she might like something girly, he found the girliest bike you could imagine, which of course, Lily *loves.*  This weekend we're going bowling with friends, Lily's special birthday wish.  Happy birthday, my sweet girl!  May five be as joyous and wonderful as four.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Egg Hunt 2014, or, How to Eat Too Much Candy

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter, Passover, or just plain old weekend!  We embarked upon our annual Easter Egg hunt, which was developed that Easter morning that we didn't get space in church, I was really pregnant with Hugo, and we went to a local park to kill some time.  There was a group of friends hosting an Easter picnic who had a real live Easter bunny there to deliver candy.  The sweet Easter bunny was kind enough to pay a visit to our family, too, and of course our children have not stopped talking about it since.  This year on the way over to the park Zosia commented, "Remember that Easter bunny we saw?  He looked a lot like someone playing dressup as a bunny."  Hrmph.  I'm glad that the Easter bunny isn't one of those traditions I'm overly attached to, as I have a feeling it is the last year Zosia is buying it.

It was a beautiful morning, and it was wonderful to take a break from Easter prep to spend some time in the fresh air.  Sitting down to look over pictures, I realized that someone is eating candy in each and every one.  We scaled way back on Easter candy this year, as we had an unreasonable amount of leftovers last year which lasted us until last month.  But even so, when we got home, Hugo was gripping his tummy moaning, "My tummy hurts!  Too much candy!"  I spent the better part of the rest of the morning holding him like the sweet little baby he still is in my heart, instead of, you know, preparing dinner for over twenty people, which is what I should have been doing.  In the end, all's well that ends well, Hugo is just fine, and we had one of the most delightful Easter meals I can remember (which I'm sure I'll be sharing more about later in the week!).

And as it so happens, today we are celebrating none other than our sweetest Lily, who turns five!  Oh, we all love her so much.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter, Friends!

Last year our family put on a little Resurrection play with friends: I can't believe how much all these kiddos have grown in the last year  Sending much love to you all on this blessed day!  Happy Easter!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


::He's as sweet and lovey as they come.  He will come right up to you and kiss your nose, your ears, your eyelids while saying, "I wuv you, I wuv you, I wuv you"  over and over again.  He makes my heart melt and I already lament the fact that one day he will likely love another woman more than me.  And yet pure mischief.  Proudly bringing me a large empty bottle of baby oil, which he dumped.  On the carpet.  "Sowy, sowy, sowy.  I not do it again" (and he didn't do that again, although I did just discover that he dumped a cup of water.  On the same carpet).  And then a smile and a twinkle in his mischievous eyes.  Oh my, this boy.
::Growing so quickly, and just like that everything is green inside and out.  This is the week.

::Chocolate chip pancakes which my husband declared were the best he's ever had (while Zosia looked over his shoulder saying, "Not so much brown sugar.  They have chocolate chips,dad!"  I never knew children would be such upholders of virtue and moderation).
:: The sweet potato has sprouted.  It took about two months (!), which we speculate was due to some treatment they give grocery store potatoes to prevent sprouting.  But we waited and waited, and there it is.  Now does anyone know whether we can translate this into sweet potatoes in the garden, and how?

:: Today we had all three meals on the deck.  It makes me happy that the wildlife can clean up the crumbs instead of me, and the fresh air seems to give everyone a better appetite.
:: Bedtime reading and just like that the day is done.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Peak Bloom Stroll

Cherry blossoms have erupted into full bloom.  Soft pink flowers against a backdrop of leafless trees.  Gnarly, twisted, aged trunks covered in light pink popcorn.  Such a stark juxtaposition.

We sometimes go down to the tidal basin to enjoy the flowers, but this year decided to stroll through a beautiful neighborhood lined with cherry trees instead.  Quiet, relaxed, and so incredibly welcoming: we were not the only ones who thought to pay the neighborhood a visit, and some enterprising children had even set up a lemonade and snack stand.  Children were running around, couples were lying in the grass, families were picnicing.  A modern day John Singer Sargent siesta painting.  

We spread out a blanket and let the kids run around while the babies lay down looking up at the beautiful branches.  Once again I was reminded of the fact that people everywhere love twins.  Drivers slowed with windows rolled down to inquire about the babies, many strangers approached us to chat, and I even noticed a few people sneaking up to take a picture.  Maybe we should set up a twin stand next to the lemonade stand next year, what do you think?

I can't think of a better way to welcome a weekend.