Monday, February 18, 2008



Well as you would expect Valentine's Day is completely over the top here. I loved it, as did the children but it did take a bit of planning ahead. Jacob had to provide cards and gifts for 21 and Abi 11. Abi wasn't allowed to put names on hers as it would be too difficult to hand them out?! So we spent the week and a half before Valentines Day making our cards. Abi only needed one afternoon as she's a crafty girl, Jacob however took his time over the week. He did have more and wanted to do all the writing himself. We baked cupcakes the day before and enjoyed handing out all the treats on the day. Allen sent me flowers for the first time in 13 years on Valentines Day, which was a lovely surprise. Well not so much a surprise as he phoned to see if I'd got the flowers before they were delivered! There's a photo of us with the flowers and bits Jacob and Abi got too.

Since Allen's been away Jacob managed to have 2 days off sick. He wasn't that sick as you'll see from the photo of him on the tyre swing along with Abi's friend Cody and Abi too. There's also a photo of Abi with Sweetheart. The bear she made at the Build a Bear party. Sweetheart has been a major success and even Jacob asked if they had army outfits to put the bears in (unfortunately they do!).

Off to the Childrens Museum today, went to the zoo Saturday and gym yesterday. It's President's Day here today so no school. Also going to buy the Transformers DVD as lots of things are on sale due to this 'special day'! Am busy mastering DVR - a way you can video off the TV without a video (not sure we have it in the UK yet?). So far I've managed to record Night at the Museum in Spanish (didn't realise we had HBO in Spanish) and cut the end off a Scooby Doo film. Not popular with Jacob at the moment although I did redeem myself in his eyes by recording 3 Power Rangers episodes. Allen returns on Wednesday which we're all looking forward to.

Hope everyone's well


Monday, February 11, 2008

Bat Mitzvah's and Bears!

Hi All

Well Shawna's long awaited Bat Mitzvah finally arrived this weekend and it was more extravagant than most weddings I've been too. We all had a great time, hopefully you'll see some of what I'm talking about in the photos. Firstly the service was different. It was all in Hebrew although there was a Rabi who translated lots of it into English for the non Jewish people there. It lasted an hour and a half and Jacob and Abi survived pretty well. It was very interesting with the arrival of the Torah from the Ark and lots of ceremony too. Shawna did a great job - I obviously didn't understand a thing, but it seemed like she did a great job! Then the proper party started. Dancing was on the agender before any food. Shawna and Mindy (her mum) were hoisted up on chairs and danced about - see photo. There was also dancing around in lots of circles doing cross steps. I though this was a Greek Wedding thing. Everyone got involved and the kids loved it. We did then sit down for food although people danced through out - see photo of Allen, Abi and Kelli (our neighbour) dancing. Also note Shawna's name in lights on the wall. Mindy had gone to town on the decorations. There were large balloons and streamers hanging from the ceiling. Lolly pops with Shawna's name on together with tins of mints and lip glosses all bearing Shawna's name and the date. There was a photographer taking photos that they developed there and then and just gave to you. We've got a lovely one of the 4 of us. They did games for the children and there's a photo of Jacob proudly holding a blow up guitar he won. We left at 9.30 as Jacob and Abi were very tired but the party continued and Shawna finally left at 1am. I'm glad we've experienced a Bat Mitzvah, if we do so again I may research Juadaism a bit more so I don't feel as stupid!

Today Abi and I experienced our first Build a Bear party. Beckett, in Abi's pre school class, turned 4. There were about 18 at the party and they got to stuff a bear, name it, groom it and play. There's a photo of Abi at the grooming station. After the party we chose an outfit for 'Sweatheart' (that's what Abi named it). She put it in a princess dress identical to the one that my mum bought for her for Christmas. It was good fun but I will be avoiding the shop in the future as Abi will expect a new bear each time! Jacob went to a friends during this and was not remotely interested in Abi's bear when we picked him up which was great.

Allen's in the UK for the next 10 days so my sanity will be serverly tested. This is the longest he's been away since having the children. As he pointed out at least it's not a 15 month stint in Iraq like the Americans get here.

So here's to 10 days going quickly!

Hope all's well, our phone number has changed - 303 731 9636


Monday, February 4, 2008

A True Log Cabin

Hi All

We had a great weekend down South staying at Amy's parents cabin. It was on the way to Monarch Ski area near a town called Salida. It's still in Colorado but was about 3 hours from here. Got there late on Friday night and disturbed a skunk that sprayed straight away. Unfortunately it sprayed right in the entrance way to our cabin! I've never smelt skunk before and I will never forget that odour! It actually infiltrated all of our clothes and we've had to wash everything on our return. Luckily you couldn't really smell it once inside but going in and out of the cabin was interesting. The children didn't notice at all and had a wonderful time. The snow was deep and they loved exploring and climbing on the rocks. I've included photos of the cabin, Jacob and a bit piece of ice he found and both of them outside. Jacob's now got his new glasses and they are ones that go dark outside. He loves them. Allen and Nick went skiing at Monarch on Saturday morning. We then all met up in Salida for cake. The cabin's were heated by a log fire and there was no mains electricity. We felt very away from it and it was great! No TV or microwave. Things run off batteries and solar power. We want to go back in the summer as it's near the Royal Gorge. There was an outside hot tub that you had to light a fire under to heat up. We lit it Saturday morning and by the evening it was still a frozen block so we gave up! It was very cold but the fire kept everyone warm.

Came back in time for Super Bowl. I was more interested in the adverts as all the new ones are shown during the game. The New York Giants won right at the end although I missed it as I was asleep! Kelli, over the road, had kindly invited us over. A bit different to the old Jane Way parties but still nice to be watching it with other people. Took Jacob and Abi home before the end as they were very tired from our weekend away.

Allen flies to London next Sunday, I'm not looking forward to him going. Also the Bat Mitzvah next weekend so I'll take lots of photos of the party.

Hope everyone's well