Monday, December 29, 2008


How did I not get this???

I'm frigging addicted's just what I need, another time-suck!!!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Upstate NY after Christmas

We traveled from VA to up-state NY the day after Christmas to visit the outlaws (that requires another post). The kids reveled in the snow...

Tres amigos!!!

I love these action photos...

Let's gang up on Daddy!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

The stockings are hung, and most of the gifts have been wrapped. All we need is for Santa to arrive!!! As I am writing this post, Santa is in Fuji, Japan. We've been tracking Santa since we woke up this morning. We've seen footage of him in New Zealand, Australia and Japan.

Oh, the excitement is in the air in the Jones' house this morning!!! The kids have been playing in the living room all morning. They are constantly resorting everyone's presents. Tank reminds me of my older brother when he was a kid. He's bouncing off the walls.

We wish everyone a very Merry Christmas...May visions of sugar plums dance in your heads!

Santa is in Tokyo now!!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Brother T

My brother T's birthday was yesterday, and he's my Irish twin!

Do you know what Irish Twins are?

They are two siblings born within a year of each other. My brother T and I are true Irish twins. We were born within a year IN THE SAME YEAR. I was born in January...he was born in December. In fact, his birthday was yesterday. He also died from a tragic accident when he was 2.5yo. Tank's middle name is his.

We were born in 1967.

Happy 41st!!!

I WISH I grew up with him.

I also believe all of my grandparents are taking care of him, and he's taking care of my Ned & Nora until I can meet up with him again.

God Bless You, Terence!

Monday, December 15, 2008

She's only 3...How can this be???

Yesterday we went to our annual Christmas Brunch at Evergreen. We were joined by Mim and Pop, CoCo, Uncle Todd, Master B and Baby Lulu. The club puts out an awesome feast, and afterward Santa comes riding up in his golf cart.

Tank and Banana joyfully sat on Santa's lap when he called out for them to give them their presents. KK wanted no part of that. She stayed attached to her Mama's lap, so Santa came to her to help her open her present. As long as she was touching Mama, she was OK with that.

As I was getting her dressed for bed last night, I asked her how she liked Santa.

KK: I don't want to sit on his lap.

Me: That's OK, sweetheart...You don't have to.

KK: What's his name?

Me: His name is Santa Clause.

KK: But, what's his name?

Me: Santa Claus.

KK: But, what's his name when he takes his costume off?

Me (freaking out): Oh, honey! His name is Santa Claus. When he takes his suit off, he puts on his red pajamas and goes to sleep. He needs his rest if he's going to visit all the good girls and boys at Christmas.

KK: Oh!!!

I'm telling you, this girl has been here before.

My next conversation was with Tank (5yo).

Me: What did Santa say to you when you sat on his lap?

Tank: He asked me what I wanted for Christmas. I told him Nerf. [He received a Nerf Ballblaster.]

Me: Did you tell him where you live? Did you give him your address so he can find you on Christmas Eve/night?

Tank: Oh, Ma...Santa knows where ALL the kids live.

I'm so enjoying watching the magic of Christmas in the kids' eyes this holiday season.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Panic Attack

I messed up royally when I ordered our Christmas cards this year. I chose the Santa Penguins card from Exposures Online. I knew that the picture had to placed horizontally only for this card. I forgot that the picture I had was vertical, with no way to crop to make horizontal. We rarely have a picture with the 5 of us together. Here's the picture I wanted to send to our family and friends. This was taking at big bro's wedding in Charlotte back in June.

I went into panic mode...what was I to do??? I wasted a morning driving around to stationery shops to find an alternative card...I wasted another few hours checking sites online. My sister brought me back to earth when she suggested I use one of her favorite pictures of my kids on the front of the card and then insert the family picture inside the card. Duh...why didn't I think of that?!?!?!

So, this is the picture I am going to use on the card....

And...everyone will get the bonus family photo inside the card! What do you think?

Oh...Do you want to know the funny thing about these cards I ordered from Exposures??? I ordered the same card last year. LOL...I must've really liked them. Do you think anyone will remember?

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Saturday, December 06, 2008

12 Teams, 2 Divisions, One Champion

We ARE VA Tech!!!

Mr. O gave me my Christmas present early this year. While he and the kids are braving the cold up in Northern VA, I am enjoying the mild weather in Tampa this weekend. I went to the game today and partied it up with many Hokies, young and old.

I don't fly out until tomorrow evening. I was planning on going to Busch Gardens since I love roller coasters. Unfortunately, a cold front is coming through with expected highs in the mid-60s. That's too cold for me to go on the wet coasters. I think I might go explore St. Petersburg instead.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Monday, December 01, 2008

What Christmas Movie are You?

I got this from Pink in a Sea of Blue. You should check it out.

As chaotic as my family life may be, seem, etc., this is fitting...

Your Christmas is Most Like: A Christmas Story

Loving, fun, and totally crazy.

Don't shoot your eye out!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving Weekend

Thanksgiving morning while we were enjoying the Macy's parade, we cooked a turkey to bring to Mim & Pop's house and decorated our Christmas tree. Did I say we put up our tree??? Mr. O had to work on Friday, so I thought it would be fun for the kids to decorate the tree then. There was no way I could carry and assemble the tree by myself so Mr. O and I put it up on Thursday. Once the tree was up, the kids were too giddy with wanting to decorate, we did!!!

We enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving Feast at my parents' house. It's not that often when all of my siblings (5 of us) are together for a holiday dinner. We had a feast for 15 adults and 7 children. All the adults and the 2 youngest babes sat in dining room, while the 5 older cousins sat in the foyer.

As a child growing up in New York City, I remember many holiday dinners sitting at the kids' table in my Nanny's apartment. I also remember wanting to sit with the big people. I don't think any of these children had any desire to join us though.

Do you notice the 2 dogs in the picture? They are not dumb...they know they are going to score some food.

On Friday, we went to the holiday parade at Reston Town Center. This is our third year in a row at this parade. The last 2 years were FREEZING. I think we even left early last year. This year the forecast was partly Sunny and 52 degrees. Let me tell was the coldest 52 degrees I've ever felt. My feet were still cold 5 hours after we left. That said, it was great fun!!!

Here are the kids before the parade started. I love KK's expression. She's NOT happy that Tank is trying to hold her hand.

We were joined by CoCo, Toad, Master B and Baby L. Here's Master B and Baby L.

The highlights of the parade were:


Mr. Potato Head...

Mickey Mouse... [We're going to visit him next month at his house.]

and, finally, Santa & Mrs. Claus! Who needs the Macy's parade when you can have this??? LOL

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Fun Day Saturday

This morning all the little cousins gathered at CoCo's house to get their picture taken together. This is the 3rd year we have gathered the little ones for a picture to give to Mim & Pop at Christmas. The first 2 years we met at Picture People or Portrait Innovations for "the" picture. This year we decided to try on our own. All the kiddies wore jeans and white turtlenecks, and were barefoot. Since CoCo is the only family member I know that reads this blog, I'll share my favorite photo (taken with my iPhone). Most of the pictures were taken with a pretty fancy camera, but we haven't had a chance to review them yet.

Once we were done with the cousin photos, Mr. O took Tank and Baby Girl KK for a fun day of their own. I took Banana for a "Mommy & Me" day. We went to lunch at Santini's; I had my regular grilled chicken club, & Banana had pizza. From there, we went to a birthday party for one of the girls in her pre-K class. The highlight of this party was the professional face painting and balloon figures. Banana chose a butterfly for her face painting, and a princess wand as her balloon. Looks pretty good, don't you think???

I love that monogrammed sweater. CoCo gifted those monogrammed sweaters for all the cousins two years ago. It looks like I need to order the next size up for my kiddies. We're always complimented when the kids wear those sweaters.

This face-painter was AMAZING!!! Check this little chick out...her eyes are closed. Actually, after I cropped the pic, it looks scary!!!

If KK still wants a Princess in the Castle party for her birthday (6 months from now), I may just hire this painter for a Princess in the Castle and Pirate party. Tank and Master B would be too disappointed if they weren't invited.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Thespians in the making!!!

Tank and KK came running up from the pigpen, aka playroom or basement. While KK was chasing Tank, she announced, "I'm Gabriella, and he's Troy Bolten." LOL

6th of 6th

I saw this on Abnormally Normal's blog, and have seen variations of this on other blogs. You describe the 6th picture in your 6th file folder on your computer.

KK gets to be the star of this post.

This picture was taken in April at Uncle Julio's Rio Grande Cafe, one of the kids' favorite restaurants. KK is just one month shy of her 3rd birthday. I just want to squeeze those cheeks!!!

Give this a whirl...6th folder, 6th picture!!!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Transported high school!!!

Last night Mr. O and I took the kids the local Greek grille. Our neighbor is the master chef there, and the kids love going to see Mr. C at work. Unfortunately, he was filling in at a different restaurant. Disappointment aside, we had a great family meal.

On our way home, we noticed the lights on at the local high school. Tank was disappointed yesterday morning when I didn't Tivo Thursday night's Tech game. I felt bad about that, but not that bad. When I went to Tivo it, it meant that either ER or Grey's Anatomy was out...that was not going to happen. Anyway, being our not so un-spontaneous selves at night, we took the kids to a football game. Here they are with the Potomac Falls Panther.

Here's handsome Tank...

Then, this afternoon we took the kids to see

What fun!!! I, of course, ate too much popcorn and Raisinets. What fun!!! :)

The last time I stepped foot in a movie theater was March 2004 when Mr. O & I saw The Passion of Christ. It was nice to see a light-hearted movie today.

When was the last time you went to the movies? What did you see?

Friday, November 14, 2008

What a week!!!

Mentally, emotionally, I should be in a funk. I'm not though. But, this has been one heck of a funkish (I know that's not a word) week.

1. I've been late by 15 to 30 minutes in dropping my kids off at school EVERY day this week. There shouldn't be any excuse for this as they don't start until 9:30. I'm hoping we can back on track next week.

2. Our washing machine no longer washes clothes. It's repairable, but it's costly. So, we bought a new one on Tuesday. It won't be delivered until next Wednesday. With 3 kids ages 5 and under, all I can say is ARGHH!!!! Instead of heading to the gym or to the stores after dropping the kids off at school, I head to my folks' house to use their washing machine. Thanks, Mim & Pop!

3. Wednesday night, I got a text message from a close friend who I talk to every few weeks but rarely see. She was in my wedding party. We always get together at the Life with Cancer benefit at Crate & Barrel. It goes from 6-9p. She texted around 7p to see where I was. I was 40 minutes home, because I forgot. If it wasn't for Mr. O shooing me out the door, I would have missed this fun outing with her. Thanks, babe!!! Here's close friend and me at the local bar afterwards...

4. VA Tech LOST last night...Crapolla!!! That means I most likely will not be heading to Tampa the first weekend in December. Luckily, Mr. O booked my ticket with Southwest, so I can keep the credits for a year.

5. I ended the week with having my first, my long overdue baseline mammo. My PCP has been after me for many, many years to get it done. Today, I did it, somehow. My babysitter baled on me...thankfully, I had my sister to back me up. Thanks, sissy!!! Anyway, back to the mammo...I must have had one helluva technologist. This was was a little uncomfortable, but nothing like what I have heard before. From some stories I heard, I thought I might need some pain pills. Luckily, I had some...and thankfully, I didn't have to use them!!!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Sunday,,,A Day of Rest!

Not really!!!

It was a fun day nonetheless. Mr. O golfed and I supervised the kids raking the leaves in the backyard. We also cleaned out the truck...YUCK!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Fun Day Saturday!

Every Saturday should be a fun day!

I am fortunate and very thankful that I get to spend a lot of time with my sister and her children. We see each other 2-3x per week. It's also great that we live so close to each other that when an emergency comes up, we can back each other up.

I had an especially fun day today. I spent it with my sister (CoC0), with no kids (mine or hers). Today, the dads were in charge of the kiddies, and we took off all by our lonesome. This was the first time we have done that...and now, I believe we have a new tradition in the making. We live in the suburbs of DC. Today we drove into the "city" to get our hairs done...then, we went out for a late lunch at Lauriol Plaza. CoCo had the chicken enchiladas and I had the chicken fajtas. So yummy!!!

I'm looking forward to our next outing just before Xmas when we'll get our hairs done again, and hopefully, another luncheon. I like hanging out with my baby sister.

I hope Banana can say the same thing 30 years from now about hanging out with KK...and vice versa.

Friday, November 07, 2008

It's official!!!

We are going to Disneyworld in January for 7 days!!!

The kids are excited, but, honestly, I think I'm more excited than the 3 of them combined. I've never been there, always wanted to go, etc. etc. I've been to Disneyland in CA many times, but I have a feeling that Disneyworld is like Disneyland on cack. If it isn't, please don't burst my bubble.

Not only do I get to experience this Magic for myself, I also get to see it through the wondrous eyes of 3 innocent children who believe in everything magical.

We were going to rent a condo from a friend for the week, but ended up getting a cabin onsite thanks to Disney's great offer of "Buy 4 nights, get 3 free." Disney announced this offer just yesterday at 5p EST. Rooms are going fast, so get moving if you are thinking of a Disneyworld trip between January 4th-June 27th, 2009. This offer is blocked out only for two weeks (Easter???) in April (4th-19th).

We're also getting a $200 Disney gift card (available from January 4th-March 29th). I'm guessing we'll be blowing that on Mickey Mouse ears and t-shirts for the kids. I'm (meaning, ME, and me only) am also getting a $75 gift card because we will be there on MY birthday. We already booked two character meals....a princess breakfast our first morning there, and a dinner with Chef Mickey on MY birthday!!! SWEET!

I'm thankful for all the sounds of joy and excitement from my kids as we are planning this trip. They have no idea what they are in for, but they know it's good. Today wasn't a whine-free day, but it was a fight-free day. That's good.

I'll start with my kids stories of thankfulness and hopes this weekend. Have a good one!!!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Thankful Thursday!

Thanksgiving is only 3 weeks from today!

I feel like it's getting passed by.

We just celebrated Halloween...and we had a great time. Now, all my kids, courtesy of the mass marketing of the toy industry, are gearing up for Xmas. Me and Mr. O., we love our DVR; mostly, because we can cruise through the commercials. Our kids would rather watch commercials than their shows right now.

Kids: Can you get me this...can you get me that...blah blah blah

I get that... I really do...

So, we are telling them not to ask us, but to remember their wishes in their Santa letters.

I really want the Thanksgiving holiday to be meaningful for them...I'm going to start now by asking them what they are thankful for each day, and what they wish and hope for the next day. Recognizing that they are 3, 5, and 5, I have a feeling we will have some funny remarks.

Leading the pack, I'm thankful for my husband and 3 earth angels....I also hope for a whine-free day tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Surprise Announcement

Mr. O and I decided just 2 nights ago that we were going to take our munchkins to Disneyworld in January. None of our plans were finalized so I never said anything to the kids. Imagine my surprise this morning when Banana skipped into the kitchen and told me we were going to Disneyworld.

Me: How do you know that?

Banana: Daddy told us last night when he was tucking us in. much for a surprise, right?

The kids were delirious with joy when I dropped them off at school this morning. They told anyone and everyone they were going to Disneyworld.

Mim (my mom) came with me this afternoon to pick them up from school. On our way to lunch, I told Tank to tell Mim our great news.

Tank: Guess what, Mim???

Mim: What, honey?

Tank: Obama WON the election.


You tell a kid he's going to Disneyworld...he's just excited Obama won. LOL

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Today's the Day!!!

Get out there and

I'm looking forward to watching the returns tonight. I'm very nervous that's it's going to be a close race. I hope we don't have the fiasco of an election that we had 8 years ago.

After voting today, you can get a free ice cream...

or a coffee...

Also, at California Tortilla, you can get a coupon for a free taco if you are wearing an “I Voted” sticker.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Stage Fright...

I can't tell you the number of times people (mostly Mim, but a lot of strangers) have told me that my children should be models or be on TV. Well, let me show you what happened when the kids got on stage recently...

A few weeks ago we went to the Autumn Adventure at Reston Town Center. The kids were excited to wear their Halloween costumes. And, they were excited to get on stage....then, they got the deer caught in the headlights look!!! Even in her fright, "Belle" still had her princess "wave." LOL

I think I can see a smirk and a twinkle in the eye of Batman...what do you think? You may need to click on the photo to check for sure. :)

Sunday, November 02, 2008

A favorite toy...

When I was a kid, I was more into playing with G.I. Joes & Janes than Barbies. My sister was the Barbie queen in our neighborhood. My two daughters LOVE their Barbie dolls and all the accessories that go with them....(*twitch*)

However, one toy I did love when I was a kid was this...

Did you have one? If so, didn't you want to bake ALL THE TIME????

Guess what??? Banana is now the proud owner of an Easy Bake Oven. She also made dessert for everyone last night. Trust didn't look pretty, but it tasted pretty good.

We'll probably be baking every day until the novelty wears off. With that in mind, I was thrilled when I found many Easy Bake Oven recipes online. Starting soon, I will be critiquing many of these recipes. LOL

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Fun on the Farms!!!

During October we made three Fall Harvest festivals at three local farms in Loudoun County....what fun we had!!!

Our first visit was to Layng's Flower Farm in Aldie, VA. This farm is owned by a family we know through the kids' preschool. N & J "graduated" in June, and are now in kindergarten. My kids missed the cutoff and are the oldest in their pre-K class this year. The kids enjoyed the slides...

the pumpkin painting...

and the scarecrows!!! Who's the scariest of them all???

The weather changed in the next, we officially moved to Fall. Our next visit was to the Maize at Temple Hall Farm Regional Park in Leesburg. They had an incredible corn maze...unfortunately, we didn't make it to the end. We had to backtrack to the entrance (and we still got lost) about an hour into it as the kids had to go to the bathroom. Once we got out and as we were running to the restrooms, Baby Girl KK had an accident. :( Luckily, we had a change of clothes in the car and we continued to have some more fun.

The kids in the Maize...

I wish I knew what Tank found so amusing...

Our last Harvest Festival was at Great Country Farms in beautiful Bluemont, VA. Every year, our local twin group hosts a Fall Festival at this Community Supported Agriculture farm. The club provides burgers, frankfurters (hot dogs) and BBQ, while the members bring side dishes and desserts. I had the BEST banana bread I've ever tasted, even if it didn't have chocolate chips in it!!! We had a great time here this year, but we were rushed. We needed to get back home by 2:30p to finish our party preps for our neighborhood Halloween parade and chili cookoff as well as our own party we were hosting for family and friends.

The kids loved jumping on the huge Pumpkin Jumping KK soar!!!

Would you be OK with these girls driving a tractor???

Doesn't Mr. O look too cool in his shades??? <*heart*>