Child’s Play

Do you remember your childhood obsession?

Inoccent Wonder

*My entry in this week’s iheart faces challenge*

This is hers. She got this box of colored stones (she calls marbles).

She loooooves them.

She counts them.

She categorizes them (by color and shape).

They are people. They are on a journey.

They interact. They imagine. They dream.

They need protection (a box), guidance (direction), and friends (fellow colors).

She cares for them and helps them get to where they are going (home, school, work, play).

They are not just stones. They are important.

I think we can learn a lot from preschoolers.

Don’t you?

Dream. Imagine. Play.

Oklahoma Girls

If I didn’t know any better, I’d say they had been to Oklahoma before. They took to grandma’s house like old pros.

Their favorite, by far (even more so than the dogs), Grandma’s cottage. It has a loft full of toys. They decided it was their school, their house, and anything else they could imagine. Telling each other when to come home and where to park the scooter (yes, they found spots and scooters).

Discovering a "little" house.

It was so much fun watching them.

The play loft in Grandma's cottage.

I love the tiny couch up in the loft. It reminded me of Alice in Wonderland.

Bridget in wonderland.
Playing in the loft.

It’s funny. Now that I am uploading and looking at these pics. I am noticing some of the loft toys were in the yard and I made them put them back inside. How did they get them down? Oh boy. Sorry Mom!

Bridget on an antique rocking horse that still works.

Molly in the yard with Sweetie. She lives up to her name; a very sweet dog.

Bridget loved holding Mom’s little Chihuahua named, “Tiny”. Last time I saw her she was a puppy, and well, she hasn’t grown much.

Bridget and Tiny.

We were not disappointed by the country either. Mom’s next door neighbor’s donkey had a baby. Say it with me, “Awhhh!”

They were scared of me and wouldn’t get too close. I used my zoom lens to try and capture them. I just LOVE animal babies!

Mom and baby.

We had no issues there and back with the kids (thank-you iPhones!). Molly learned to text message (really, really well). You can thank her step-sister Sydney. Sydney was my Day 8 of the 365 project photo. You can check my Flickr account for the photograph.

Sorry this is short, but it’s five minutes until midnight after a long day and this is my promised post of the day.

Goodnight all!

The Not So Nuclear Family’s Christmas Tradition

A new family tradition was born this past weekend in a very simple situational formula. Because if you take a nuclear family, split the Adam (and Eve), blend, divide, and add a little sugar and sprinkles. You would have our “new” family tradition.

Baking cookies with the ex-wife, all the girls, cousins, and some of the in-laws (or ex-in-laws depending on who you are) including mom-in-law fresh out of the hospital.

It started with a suggestion by Jason’s ex-wife; aka, the girls mom, to begin (try) a new family tradition at Christmas. A baking tradition. I was open to it.

Why?

Well, the cookies of course the kids of course.

Actually, the cousins are very close and it would be nice to gather and bake (or man the oven if you don’t bake-just sayin’) while everyone has fun doing their thing (like the oven) (or taking pictures). Hey, I am not a baker. I am a burner. I am shocked I was in charge of the oven. More shocked that I could work the ovens. Ahem. Only one parchment paper got singed in the making of these cookies. Heh.

The cookies – all three? four? five? dozen(s) – turned out YUM-a-licious. Thanks to the baking and rolling and stirring skills of others. My reward for loaning my kitchen and hosting the Olympic cookie baking event. COOKIES. Yeah!!

I missed a lot of stuff growing up when my mom and dad divorced; like baking cookies with cousins on my dad’s side. I, also, gained a lot by celebrating holidays with my sister and brother’s grandma and dad, who were not blood related to me, but accepted the new extended family (me and my brother from my mom’s second marriage) with open arms.

Maybe, I have taken the best and worst of divorce from my life as a child to help formulate this new branch of togetherness. I like “new” traditions. I like being open to change. To advance and grow as families just as the world changes, advances, and grows.

Blended. Mixed. Extended. Kindred. We are all in this together…..for life! I don’t think it ends at eighteen. These children graduate from college, marry, and have children of their own. It goes on and on. Might as well make the best of it. We can make the best of it.

Salem, Brownie, and Anna dressed and ready to par-tay.

Once every guest was greeted with raised paws and a nose in the proper place. The furry welcoming committee was sent out of the kitchen. Well, except for one fur friend who found a pretty sweet spot in Grandma’s wheelchair and did not MOVE for hours.

Meet Brownie, the cuddle buddy, renamed BrownieSue.

Syd and Aunt Tricia making magic happen.
The makings of a great tradition
A little black & white editing fun.
Yum!
The New Nuclear Family of Today.
I never said NORMAL. Look closely there are issues. HA.

After the chaos of atom bomb sprinkle explosions and gel icing shots. The hazemat team cleared the kitchen. The dogs undressed (some of them). All was quiet. We had the remains of DOZENS of cookies, a grandma and her grand dog still on her lap. A four-year old with her extended/blended/kindred family pet.

Sue and BrownieSue

Cookie bake until you drop, then crawl.

All parties have deemed this day tradition worthy and we can’t wait for next year.

Well…maybe Salem can wait. She looks pretty patient.

What you do think? Should we redefine family relationships? Or let it alone?

My Pet Kids

I grew up with dogs. All kinds. Lots of breeds, especially the mixed. In all my years of being a dog lover and knowing how owners end up resembling their pets, I never noticed how our kids could resemble them too.

Similar facial expressions.

Same Haircuts.

Deep thoughts.

Love.

Drama.

Good days and bad.

Is it just me? Or do my kids have a dog’s life? Or is it the other way around, my dogs have a kids life?

Whichever the case, they all live the sweet life of a pet. They look like them. They act like them. They are spoiled and loved. It’s hard to tell them apart and I’m not sure what I’d do without any of them.


Brownie and Bridget, in need of a trim





Salem and Bridget, pondering deep thoughts, head to head. I wonder if they solved World Peace?


Brownie and Sydney with clairvoyant calls of distress. Is it time for a potty break?

By the way….Brownie is now six months old and ten and half pounds!

Also, I got a cloud diffuser for my flash this weekend. Not sure what all that means, I am still figuring it out. But I love these shots. I love the way the light falls. What a dramatic, fun fur family. I mean kid family. Ha.

Happy WW!