When you get together for your Mom's 70th birthday, you naturally take pictures. It was pretty cold and not the best weather so we didn't stay out for long. Here is what we ended up with:
A more recent tradition has been to have the grandkids make a pyramid when we have get-togethers. This is all of them minus Nicolas, who was off to the side waiting for someone to call him over to get on and no one ever did, and Daphne, Leah's daughter who is a little reserved, and Tim's girls who didn't make it over for the celebration.
This one definitely needs an explanation. A few years back when watching a slide show of old family pictures we noticed that Mark had his hip out in EVERY picture. They spanned years and every one - yup, hip out. So we figured we needed an updated one. See how naturally Mark does it? Jeff, Leah and I look like we are trying too hard, but it obviously comes easy to Mark. :-)
Dad and Mom tried to get into the hip action too. Guess Mark didn't get it from Dad.
And you wonder why I am so weird. Look what I came from! I love when Dad hams things up, but we usually don't see this clown side of Mom.
In order of age, not by height obviously. I love my family! I have the best parents and siblings ever. Wish Tim could have been here too, but he was called into work. Thanks, Mom, for having a birthday so we had an excuse to get together!
Okay, I had to wait over week to post this in case Mom read my blog before her birthday. But I must preface it by saying, "I HATE JEWELRY STORES!". I hope I never have to spend 6 hours straight at jeweler's again. Mom better take really good care of that ring! :-)
Dad called Mark several weeks ago and said that the one thing he would like us all to get for Mom's birthday is a new mother's ring as she lost hers years ago. He provided some of the money and we siblings all agreed to cover the rest, but the brothers were not sure about picking a ring out so that fell to the girls. Marcia covered Zales and looked online, I scoured websites and then Alison and I spent an entire day going from jeweler to jeweler to jeweler trying to find the perfect ring. Shane Co, Jared, Morgan, back to Shane Co, Shubach, and several others - it was a long day. It almost reminded me of working at the Gap, being accosted by a salesperson the instant you walk in the door. Of course the Gap doesn't have men in suits wandering around with shifty eyes, watching every move though. I felt like a criminal except in Morgan Jewelers where we were offered a drink while we looked. I was amazed by the wide range in prices for the same type ring - white gold with 5 stones. There is 10 carat, 14 carat, sterling silver (dirty words to the jewelers apparently), synthetic stones, genuine stones, opal vs pink tourmaline for October, round, marquis, princess cut, order of the stones (birth order vs aesthetically pleasing order), yikes!
After the day of shopping, and going out to lunch, of course, Alison presented our findings to the brothers and Marcia and we came up with a winner. And it was. Tears flowed, the ring went on immediately and didn't come off again. It is beautiful and Mom had the best birthday ever. I can't think of a more deserving mother in the whole world! Love you, Mom!
Marin sometimes says the oddest things, like when she sees something disgusting or something that would be really painful that would make you feel an odd feeling in your gut, she says it "makes her butt swell up". We always get a laugh at that and that is a common saying in our household now. Like when you see someone break a bone and you see it popping out at an odd angle and you get a weird feeling, don't be surprised to hear one of us ask, "Did that make your butt swell up?"
This past weekend Marin finally got new glasses. She had been so careful with the last ones that I didn't take her back to check prescriptions and get new glasses for 2 years. This time we were smarter and instead of going to Costco and paying $175 for an eye exam and one pair of glasses, we went to America's Best and got the eye exam and TWO pairs of glasses for $99, yes, honestly, my debit card charge was only $99. Marin was one thrilled twelve year old, getting two pairs of more trendy glasses. And what does she say on the way home? "I love getting new glasses; they always make me feel taller." Really? What? She sure is weird.
Yay! Dr. Payne tried again to put Markee off today, saying that he is not satisfied with the vertical line of her top and bottom teeth. Jared was the one with her because I had to work until 12 and he stood firm. "Take them off," says the Dad. And off they came. Markee is one thrilled 16 year old! 3/3/11 was the lucky date after all.
In 3rd grade at Hidden Hollow Elementary, the kids get to do a biography fair. They choose a famous person who they want to portray and study him/her. They write a paper, make a poster, and finally dress up as the person for the Biography Fair at school. Since Nicolas is way into Harry Potter right now he, of course, chose Daniel Radcliffe. He was so excited as he studied him and printed out information and pictures of the actor. As the culmination, he begged me for weeks to dye his hair dark for the fair. I acquiesced. His hair came out great and he dressed up in jeans, white t-shirt and a blazer. Nicolas looked great and had a wonderful time.
Okay, I think Jared had a good birthday - we got him a couple nice presents. But there were two funny highlights. Because it was a really busy afternoon we ended up doing our regular "Taco Tuesday" from Del Taco and bought a cake. I didn't have a "4" candle but I had a "3", a "0", a "1" and a "7". So we did math on the top of the cake - 30 +17 =47. :-) How many people does it take to light 4 candles? That was the funny part.
Then, Marin had made a pinata at school and she wanted to use it for Jared's birthday. We filled it and Jared rigged it up in the garage. We all stood around for our turn to hit it. "Wham!" Marin hit it once and knocked it to the ground, broken open. A little anti-climatic, but it was funny!