Tuesday, March 31, 2009

a must see

let me preface what i am about to write by stating that i never cry in movies. (it usually takes "shirley maclaine in terms of endearment type of acting" to get me to shed tears unless of course, i'm pregnant- but i digress.) this past weekend, pat and i thoroughly enjoyed lars and the real girl. i had wanted to see this movie when it came out, but abstained because i was worried of the nature of the jokes based on the premise; it's about a shut-in man who orders a "special" doll over the internet. i decided to put the movie on my netflix queue after i read a great review from a blog i love to read. first off, this movie is totally clean!!! except for the real nature of the doll, it is a PG movie. (the real nature is hardly referenced and certainly not how the doll is treated in the movie.) but that is not why i loved this movie. it is ultimately a movie about the goodness of people. you get the feeling that lars lives in a frozen tundra, but yet you want to move to this place immediately because of the sense of community and goodness in the people's hearts. it is all done so beautifully - the movie truly is surreal at times. after first laughing hysterically when he introduces his "friend" to his brother and sister-in-law, i found myself with silent tears running down my face through the remainder of the movie. you can find mr. ebert's review here. let me know if you've seen it or watch it and what you think!!!

beginning of mr. ebert's review: How do you make a film about a life-sized love doll, ordered through the Internet, into a life-affirming statement of hope? In "Lars and the Real Girl," you do it with faith in human nature, and with a performance by Ryan Gosling that says things that cannot be said. And you surround him with actors who express the instinctive kindness we show to those we love.

post edit: and to state the obvious in case you don't know me, i'm not pregnant; those tears were genuine.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

spring break

grace has been off of school this past week. we've had a relaxing week of not getting up too early (still had to get jake to school, but his bus is later), watching movies together, reading, playgroup, playing outside when it was warm enough and a special lunch date with dad on friday. on thursday night, i took lily and her to the ballet. the russian national ballet performed "cinderella" at nearby UConn. it has been a long time since i saw a professional ballet (usually see local productions). i had forgotten how a ballet company has such fluidity and at times the whole motion on stage flows with the music. it had also been a while since i've seen a ballet that seem to have male dancers to spare - and everyone of those male dancers could have been greek statues their muscles were that pronounced (except for the one played the stepmother -that is- we never saw his legs!)

here is a picture from the website. i have to say the prince holding cinderella's hand in this is NOT the prince she falls in love with.

spring hike

yesterday was so beautiful, we went on a little family hike. shoes were muddied before pat and i could get the jogging strollers together. the kids also spotted this snake by the creek and called us to look. we came across a much more aggressive snake later on a walk that gave us some good arches before slithering away.

who knew my kids were such posers? we had quite the photo shoot on the way up.

reaching the summit (if you can call it that; i do live in the northeast, people!)

i experimented with the light while i took pics of grace. gracie would have definitely been one of those pioneer children "who sang as they walked and walked and walked" - which is what she did. (i would've been too for that matter, as would my mother. i have fun memories of singing "the band played on" with my mother while we walked places when i was a kid.)

Quote of the hike:

lily after just slipping on a log: "mommy, you know why i fell?"

grace: "lily, you fell because there was not enough friction."

ok, then.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

february road trip

at the end of february, we went down to maryland to visit with my aunt, and see pat's sister-in-law's art booth at the american crafts fair. we had a fabulous time with our family. the fair was huge and it was amazing to go around and see all the booths. i especially enjoyed seeing my sister-in-law's (susan) work up close. the kids loved the kinetic marble art pieces and we would spend a good 20 minutes per visit at that booth. the girls also found another artist that gave the lifetime pass to touch her handmade beaded vases after giving them instructions on how. the girls could spend 20 minutes or so there as well.

here's all the hinckleys at susan's booth.

the girls with the artiste.

gracie with pat's brother, russ. russ and pat sound alike on the phone. i think i almost thought russ was pat once.

hanging out in the lobby.

feeding the birds (and ducks) at the baltimore pier.

the kids and i with my aunt pam at the pier.

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january getaway

at the end of january, i went up with a bunch of my friends to an overnight baby shower at a bed and breakfast in new hampshire. the mom-to-be's mother owns the bed and breakfast. i had an amazingly good time hanging out with my friends and eating the most delicioius food. there was even a small ice skating rink in the back and a basketful of skates that some of my friends and i took advantage of. (thanks to analia for the pics.)

here's my friend, jennah (who has since had her baby girl on presiden'ts day in february), her sister (and also my friend), jillair and their mother.

the whole gang.

for the record, the dog wasn't fed the whole time i was gone.
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turning into a boy

over the past six months, fritzy has shown inclinations to pure testosterone driven toys. he'll take kitchen knives out of the drawer and pretend to have a sword fight. he loves cars, trains and could not get enough of the power ranger movie that pat let him get out of the libraray. (we've actually banned power rangers movies as it was a little scary how addictive he became to it.) over christmas, my amazingly talented brother went to the basement and 15 minutes later came up with a handsomely carved wooden knife that he made with the bandsaw downstairs. we call it his "HI-ya" as that is what he repeatedly says when he's holding it.

anyhoo, my brother was so excited about fritzy newly exhibited love for guns and knives that he bought him this set of realistic looking toy guns when he got back home and mailed it to him. needless to say the guns were a hit. i'm seeing the potential of re-doing my charlie angels picture with the one of grace at the bottom left.

this toy from christmas was also a hit. pat got the kids a build your own marble thingamajig. he also got me a pair of cushioned swords that the kids have enjoyed, but we have yet to go against each other.

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christmas 2008

i took surprisingly few pictures of the holidays this year. we had a great time. christmas eve was spent acting out the nativity with some friends of ours here in ct. it was a great scene with the 1 year old shepherd not wanting to share her baby doll (the christ child) and me volunteering to be the donkey. (hey, what can i say? i'm good at making an arse of myself!)

christmas morning was in our home, then we spent the afternoon with my parents, siblings and their families. this christmas will probably always be remembered as the one where fritzy got all excited to see his dad's new red ryder BB gun, but then immediately shed tears when he realized that he couldn't play with it. (those were the only tears of the day).

the day after christmas, we gathered with the aunts and uncles and cousins. i have a close knit extended family for which i will always be grateful. i had a blast with my cousins and brothers and their spouses as we played many rounds of catchphrase. all the women had a blast watching and singing along to "mamma mia."

the girl grandchildren got matching dresses for their american girl dolls.

any macnair christmas gathering is not complete with some happy male opening a new knife. i missed pat opening his knife, but here's a shot of my cousin, grant, opening one.

the cousins minus three (we missed you caitlin, ricky & julia!) gathered for a photo shoot. as most of my pics didn't turn out, i'll post a couple of the crazy ones. we know how to have fun.

decorating the tree

the title explains it all (especially since i don't remember may details at this point). we did an advent calendar (pictured on the mantel) that we bought at the mark twain house last year. i was surprised how excited the kids were to open the boxes each day as they were all little pics of items or people that were associated with the mark twain house. but the kids were always thrilled to open a new window.

i tried to get a picture of how grumpy grace was that she didn't get to put the star on the tree, but i missed my chance.

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time for me to play catsup time! in the beginning of december, my kids were put of a nativity at our church. lily was a cow and grace was in the angel choir and was the angel who appeared to the shepherds. she memorized her line and delivered it well.

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Saturday, March 21, 2009


jake's is on the medicaid waiver!!!! just need to receive his card in the mail now. hallelujah!!

Monday, March 16, 2009


we're in the process of trying to get jake on the medicaid waiver for our state. i started this in january and i'm still plugging away at it. after our first application was lost, a week of daily calls to a particular social worker weren't returned, i re-did the application which she then filed wrong and denied. thankfully, the worker at the waiver office is wonderful and sent something to help our application along again. the receptionists at the local office have been helpful too, but this one worker still doesn't contact me or let me know what information she still needs. after another week of unreturned phone calls, i had to go to the office for the umpteenth time this morning to pick forms. before he left for work this morning, pat told me to: "remain calm" and evan exclaimed: "no, i don't want to go here" when i pulled into the department of social services parking lot. i stayed pretty calm as i asked the receptionist for the forms i needed, but did show some frustration when i explained that i had received no notifications that i needed these forms or answers to any of my phonecalls for that matter!!! so now, it's fill out the forms and then wait on line again tomorrow to drop these forms off. i'm sure this worker's caseload is overwhelming and i do know that she was out sick for a few days at one point, but even still - SERENITY NOW!!!!!!*

*for the record, i'm not a seinfeld fan. most episodes annoy me and i never watch the re-runs. that said, there was some classic stuff, i.e. when kramer gives george's in-laws a ride in the horse buggy, that were hysterical.


"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."