Our kids loved playing crochet croquet when they were younger, so we thought a croquet set would be a perfect gift for Addy's 4th birthday. She loves being outdoors and loves playing games; great match, right?
The set arrived the day after her birthday. We got it unpacked right away and took it out to the back yard, even though the temps were barely above freezing. PopPop gave Addy some pointers on technique and then turned her loose with a mallet and ball. And stood waaaaaaay back. Addy had a great wind-up, but actual contact with the ball was hit-and-miss (mostly miss). She got frustrated when the ball didn't go very far and quickly figured out a better way to play - pick the ball up and toss it where you want it to go. I think Addy will like whack-a-doodle more when summer is here and the grass is cut shorter and the ground isn't so damp. Hope she has as much fun with croquet as we've had over the years.


Happy Thanksgiving!

It's always been my job to make the deviled eggs for family holidays, all the way back to when I was a pre-teen. I thought this would be a good year to start teaching the next generation how to make that perfect egg.
Addy helped me put the eggs on to boil and then she cracked the shells so I could remove them. She cut the eggs in half with the safety knife her mom found in a kitchen store in Denver. I was surprised at how good a job it did; I was sure the dull edge would just mangle the eggs.
I removed the yolks and Addy helped me mash and smash them before we added the Miracle Whip, salt and vinegar. Rachel came up with the idea of using pastry bags to fill the eggs; it worked great and was easy for Addy to do on her own. After all that work, do you think Addy would eat a deviled egg? Not on your life. She asked for - and got - a bowl of chicken noodle soup while the rest of us enjoyed the Thanksgiving feast. Happy Thanksgiving from our house to yours!



In what is becoming a family tradition, we went to see the Colorado Eagles play (and win!) ice hockey tonight. We went for the first time last year (they won!) and loved it so John got tickets for all of us again this year.

Addison is a fan of ice hockey, but not of the noisy arena with the yelling and music and cowbells. A sold out stadium, with a local, enthusiastic audience, can be darn loud. The solution? Microphones (what Addy calls her ear protectors.)

The game was pretty boring - 0 to 0 (with some good fights thrown in) - until the final period when the Eagles got their act together and scored 3 goals, one with less than 2 minutes remaining. Addy spent most of her time watching the cheerleaders who were performing on a small stage right beside our seats. She was fascinated - and of course has decided to be a cheerleader when she grows up, along with a princess and a fighter-fighter (Addy-speak for firefighter).

The adults were more inclined to watch the temperature reading. 13F, with winds gusting to 25 mph, equals very, very cold even by Colorado standards. Want to know why it was windy? Addy said it was because God hit the wrong button and that made the wind blow. Makes perfect sense to me.



On Saturday, Addy and I stayed home to watch the tree guys cut down the giant tree in her front yard. The poor thing was on its last legs and her parents were afraid a strong wind would blow it over onto the house. So while the others left to do other chores, Addy and I watched the arborists*. I'm sure the two guys were thrilled to have some crazy lady constantly taking their picture, but they didn't comment on it. And with Addy being Addy, she asked questions and talked the entire time. Some of my favorites:on the subject of what we should plant in place of the tree "In my garden (this year) I grew carrots and tomatoes and marshmallows."

"Without that tree, we can't exist."

Word of the Day: "Arborist - someone who takes care of trees and cuts down trees when they're dead. I'm not an arborist 'cause I can't cut down trees." Watching the tree come down was entertaining. Watching it with Addy was priceless.

*Whenever we come to visit Addy, I try to teach her a new word. She has such an extensive vocabulary that it's become difficult to find words she doesn't know. Friday's word was "bibliotheque - someone who loves books". Saturday's word was "arborist - someone who takes care of trees." Sunday's word was 'Barcalounger - what firemen sit in at the fire stations." (couldn't resist that one!)

Grand Time

**When we visit Colorado, we try to do lots of things with Addy. She's a happy, well-mannered kid so it's not a problem taking her places or trying new things. She always asks before she touches something (!! My kids never did that.) and if you say 'no', she just takes it in stride and moves on.

So far this trip we've visited antique stores, where we acquired Henrietta the Bunny; made an apron to use while cooking Thanksgiving dinner, including a clip-on flower that doubles as a hair bow;finished Addy's Mermaid Princess blanket; walked around downtown Ft. Collins while waiting for mom to get off work for lunch; and gone shopping for yarn to finish a shawl - where I just happened to find this great craft bag. It's suede on the outside, with lots of great zippered pockets for holding crochet necessities. I've never seen one like it.I love my local yarn shop, but I really love visiting new-to-me shops when we travel. You never know what you'll find.

**Check out Addy's new bike-riding skills here.


Happy Addy Day

It's hard to believe that Addison is four already. For her big day, we went to a craft fair - where I found her princess birthday crown with the looooong trailing streamers, just like a real princess - and then to see that other mouse - Chuck E. Cheese. There were games with mom and cake and horse rides in the Kentucky Derby (her favorite) and car chases and presents! Her favorite was definitely Hushpuppy, her new remote-controlled dog, followed by a new-to-her bike that Uncle Jim and Aunt Chris have had stored in their garage since Addy was born. All in all, a very nice day. Happy birthday, Adda Banana.


First Horse Ride

I don't think a girl ever forgets her first horseback ride. Addy got her first horse -not pony - ride today, as a pre-birthday treat at a friend's ranch. Shamrock, 'Rock' for short, was a perfect gentleman. And Addy was in heaven. She didn't hesitate for a second when it came time to get on Rock's back. Notice how short the stirrups are? And how her feet still don't reach them?
Shamrock's best friend is Martha the Mule, who is blind in one eye. Addy liked Martha - but from a distance. No petting here.

It was cold at the ranch but Addy would happily have stayed on Rock's back for the rest of the day. Get ready Daddy, I see at least one horse in your future!