Friday, August 31, 2007

first day of school

gracie's first day of school was this past wednesday. we have decided to send her to a magnet school for the arts in a neighboring town. she has a great love for the arts and her best friend attends this school. in fact, both her friend and her happen to wear matching outfits/uniforms (check it out here and then check this out too).

the first day was very long. i asked her to rate it on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being extremely crummy and 10 being absolutely fabulous. she gave it a 3. i was glad/relieved when she came home today in much better spirits and proclaimed that she would give it a 9. hopefully, she'll continue to settle in well. she does tend to enjoy school.

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Thursday, August 30, 2007

one really good husband

"It takes a really good husband to be better than no husband at all."

pat and i celebrated our 12th anniversary last week while i was in california. i called him early in the morning (california time) and shared with him the events from the previous day. then i hung up, picked up my journal and went to write the date. i immediately called pat back and said something like: "um, yeah, happy anniversary!" we're so romantic nowadays.
the above picture has been displayed at my grandparents house for the past 12 years. it's a little smoochie, but fun.

here's that really good husband of mine in his father's day "bowtie" that the kids made in primary. even my mom's cousin, who was out for my uncle's funeral and has only met pat a handful of times, made a point to tell me what a wonderful husband i have and how good he is with our kids. i couldn't agree more. after 12 years, i'm still amazed at how sometimes pat seems to know me better than i know myself and how at other times i don't understand why he still can't read my mind!
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Saturday, August 25, 2007

better years

here's a picture of my uncle ken before he was sick. we went out for a visit in 2003 and took the kids (i only had two then) to disneyland. he loved this picture of gracie on his shoulders. she still has a copy of it in her room.

ken would've loved the funeral. his good friend, who is a capuchine friar, started the service. his words were very comforting and he wasn't afraid to add a little humor when he spoke about his personal relationship with ken. my cousins were next and then they accompanied a friend of kenny who sang an emmy lou harris song. then my uncle walt spoke, read some emails people sent him and opened up the floor for anyone who wanted to speak. it was great to hear from so many of kenny's friends and how kenny had touched their lives. it was a very uplifting service.

check out my uncle's artwork here.

Funeral Video

Here's a video of my two cousins playing a tribute at my uncle's funeral. They sang and played Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here." It was very moving.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

In Memory

My uncle Ken passed away last Friday night. I leave today to go to California for the funeral services. This is a picture of him with my younger kids when we flew out to visit him last October. He was already sick then. I wanted to scan in some pictures of him in better years, but alas, my scanner is not attached to new computer yet (we get more memory for computer this weekend so should be able to install it soon).

We saw him whenever we would go out to California to visit my maternal grandparents. He was a commercial artist and hard worker. I remember his huge record collection (all alphabetized), late nights talking with him (he would work late into the night - I could never stay up as late as he would) and his sense of humor as evidenced by picture below.

We won't forget you, Ken!
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Friday, August 17, 2007


grace and i saw this on wednesday night in NYC. absolutely adored it!! defying gravity scene gave me chills!

air and space museum

on saturday, we headed to D.C. pat had gotten the girls stoked to see airplanes at the smithsonian. all the kids enjoyed the planes and the girls especially enjoyed the hands-on experiments. near the end, evan enjoyed getting a ride on jake - although i don't think the picture below illustrates that well. we were a little slow with the camera and evan was starting to slide.

after the museum, we went to pat's aunt and uncle's house for dinner. we had a lovely visit with them and appreciated their hospitality. sunday morning, we went to church with pat's family and then it was time to head home. we crossed the bay bridge towards annapolis. it was a beautiful bridge and a pretty detour. we took one more detour to my parents' house and visited with my sister on the way home. as we were driving, lily repeatedly said that she wanted to go to aunt pam's house, especially if we would tell her that we were on our way home. we all had a wonderful time!

Thursday, August 16, 2007


sunday night, we returned home from our trip to my aunt's house in maryland. we had a wonderful time relaxing, reconnecting with family and, of course, riding. here are some of the highlights:


you probably live under a rock if you don't know by now that my 8 year old is obsessed with horses. lucky for her, my aunt pam and cousin brittany are too. there were lots of pony rides in the ring and grace got to do a trail ride with my cousin (pictured above). in this town in maryland, you have to let horses ride on your property.

neighbor's party

we arrived in time for their neighbor's annual bash (for approx. 400 people). we went to the beautiful house pictured above, rode a hot air balloon, swam in beautiful surroundings, ate yummy food, danced to blue grass music and watched a darn good fireworks display. i especially liked the yard bug spray on each table; i thought it was a nice touch.


on wednesday, we took the kids to a fantastic children's museum in baltimore. they made silly puddy, sang karoke, climbed a three story array of slides & tunnels, matched shapes on a conveyor belt (lily's fave), explored, built, felt, etc... one idea that i'd like to let my kids do at home was letting the kids "paint" a rock with just a paintbrush and water. (sorry i forgot my camera for this outing as well as most of the pony rides. i just wasn't thinking about my blog enough.)

bubble baths

my aunt had a ton of bubble bath that she wanted the kids to try and use up. they sure had fun trying; but in the end, we took the bottles home with us.

other highlights: audrey hepburn movies with my cousin britt, movies and a stimulating game of monopoly (which i won), late nights talking with the girls after my kids were in bed, lots of animals (the ultimate highlight for my kids), the random sound of air wicks spraying (the air wicks were on the walls throughout the house; you had to be careful that the one of the front door didn't spray you in the eye when you were getting your shoes on.), the freaky feeling everytime my aunt and i do something similar (trust me, we even scare her kids.), the beauty and peace of being in the country.

more wedding pix

here's annie, pat's younger sister, who is the photographer of soooooo many wonderful pix of my kids.

the bride and groom with pat's parents: they had already left for the wedding when baby mallory arrived and had to wait until they got home to hold their new granddaughter.

parents of the bride: pat's older brother and his mucho talented wife

sisters (totally agree with amanda on this one, even though i only have one sista)

wedded bliss

belated congrats to pat's niece, chelsea, and her new hubbie, jacob (must say we like his name - as does most of america apparently). we weren't able to make it to minnesota for the wedding, but my sister-in-law shared the wonderful photos that she took (if only she had been my wedding photographer). pat and i will celeberate our 12th anniversary next week. it's been a great ride so far. hope the ride is a good one for chelsea and jake as well.

Friday, August 10, 2007

welcome baby mallory

we have a new niece! baby
mallory kirsten hinckley
was born on august 8, 2007.
she was a month early and weighed
5 pounds 7 ounces.
she, mom and dad are all doing well.
congrats, ted and libbie!!
"a baby is God's opinion that the world
should go on." -Carl Sandburg

my star studded day

eric carle

the gaghan family

it started by heading to the eric carle musuem in the morning for a book signing with eric carle. it was fun to get a glimpse of him since i enjoy his books. of course, i forgot the camera (it's starting to become a trend for me).
then it was off to a play that one of gracie's friends was in. tammy gaghan was our usher. her kids were in the play as well. for those who aren't die hard race fans (like me), tammy and her family were in the family edition of the amazing race. i spoke with her after the play. she was awesome: so willing to answer my questions and give me the inside scoop. she graciously gave me her email address, so when the new season starts, email me any production/inside scoop questions that you would like me to ask tammy.
that was july 28th; today is august 10th. i am currently at my aunt's house in maryland. we are having a wonderful, relaxing time. i can't download my pictures from camera on my aunt's computer, so i'll get you'll up to speed on our trip after my return on the 12th.


"is that lily holding baby lily?" -lily's response when i showed her a picture of gracie holding her when lily was a baby.

"drama class is actually a lot of fun." -gracie (this is only humorous in that grace seemed surprised by how much she likes drama class. this from my child who we refer to as "a drama queen" when she is not around.)

"mom, you can go with my teacher and i'll stay home with japie and evan. daddy can go to work, and i'll be the mommy" -lily, in response to learning that she would be going to preschool next year instead of this year.

"mom, if you don't get rid of that smell soon, you're going to have to buy a new car." -gracie when it took me a couple of days to clean out my car after returning from a road trip.

"mommy, they have dress-ups for you!" -lily while walking by the prom dress section at macy's.

"i said the prayer "last"-erday." -lily's replacement word for "yesterday."