Locks of Boredom…

A little bit like Locks of Love, except there’s no minimum hair length before the chopping, oh…and there’s also no licensed hairdresser doing the cutting….oh wait….you don’t just cut your hair off??????

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Look at that gorgeous hair.  The hair we’ve been waiting to grow for 4+ years now.  Anyone care to guess how it looks right now??????

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What is a mother to do????

I’ll tell you what I did…Miss A, are you listening…please remember this when you have a daughter who cuts her own hair.  It is most certainly one of my better parenting moments…no sarcasm.  You don’t believe me do you?

Backstory.  The kids both have Staph infections.  They also have mild cases of coxackie.  And Miss A has a ruptured ear drum.  We’ve been home recuperating all week.  Fun times here….fun times.

So…I went to do some mundane, unnecessary task, you know, like getting Baby D out of his crib and changing his diaper.  Apparently, the 2 hours I’d spent with Miss A having 1 on 1 time for breakfast, doing some arts and crafts, coloring in her new sketchbook and chatting was not enough to keep her wild mind and spirit for adventure satisfied for the 6 minutes this silly task took.

We fed baby D, we got him dressed and as we were walking towards the door to leave and head to the grocery store…out of the corner of my eye I noticed what looked like tufts of hair from a hairbrush on Miss A’s floor…..and then I noticed the unmistakable orange handle.  That  handle plus the blunt cut lines on the hair…I knew.  Now, when I looked at her I couldn’t really tell where she cut the hair from…then I got a little closer.  I quietly asked “Miss A…did you cut your hair?”  She started to cry.  Sob actually.  Uncontrollably.  Now…if someone took a scissor to my hair and did that to me, I’d cry that way too.  Thing is, SHE DID IT TO HERSELF!  Why the crying?????  I didn’t even yell!!!

I explained to her that it was her hair, and if she’d like it to be long like she says she does, cutting it will not speed up that result.  Sweetheart!

Inside I’m dying.  If she’s wearing a headband or a bow, it’s not SO noticeable…but in any other circumstance, she has side bangs.  No…not the pretty kind that are layered…more the mullet kind that can’t be fixed unless I chop her hair into a bowl cut.

Miss A…come on.  Can’t I get a break?!?!?!?!?!?!

Oh I did.  Thanks for not cutting your brother’s hair.  Silver lining.

Patting myself on the back for not freaking the F out.  You’re welcome Miss.

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Summer Lovin’

I’m here, I’m here…not often, but I am.  This little thing called WORK has been taking over my personal life & I LOVE IT!  If you haven’t checked it out already, come on over and follow my LKSquared Photo business blog too, since that is hopefully where I’ll be spending most of my time!  I can’t give up the personal blog … I’m sentimental like that, so I’ll be back here occasionally to keep my kid’s lives on record!

I’ve really been enjoying this summer!  It’s been much different than last summer, with us being all settled in at the house, with a lot less wedding events for our loved ones, 2 little ones running around instead of one running and one sleeping all day….you know….small things!

We joined the pool, so most days Baby D and I hang out there during the day.  It means a messy house stays messy, but isn’t that what summer is all about???  (Sorry Mister LK…the vote is with me…messy house = fabulous summer, unless I say it has to be cleaned up…then we better get on it!!!)

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Miss A has been at camp for 2 weeks now and she is loving it!!!  She has a great time with all her friends and this camp lovin’ Mommy is J-E-A-L-O-U-S of her days playing!!!!

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The last thing we’ll talk about today is our annual Summer BBQ!  We’ve been doing a 4th of July (weekend) BBQ for 4 years now, and every year we have such a great time with our friends & family!  This year we had all the regulars plus Mister LKs childhood friend who happens to live 2 towns away!  We had a great time with them & hope they come back again soon!!!  We also had 2 visiting pups who got lots of love and attention & are always welcome back!

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So that is a little bit of what we’ve been up to lately!  I’ll be back with more updates this summer as we do lots more fun things!!!

 

xoxo

My Girl Turns 4…

Dear Miss A,

My sweet pickle.  You turned 4 today…and you haven’t missed a day of amazing me.  You’re sassy, you’re smart, you’re one of the funniest people I’ve ever known.  I love you more everyday.  You are an amazing big sister.  Baby D is so lucky to have you to teach him everything you know.  Daddy & I are so incredibly proud of you.

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Some fun facts about you…

You love:  Your blankie…still.  You also love make believe.  You have a wild imagination and will keep yourself occupied with your imaginative play for hours.  You love playing house with your cousins & someone is always given the part of “sweetie”.  Sometimes you like to play a puppy or a kitty.  You also love movies.  Today it’s a tie between “Cinderella: Dreams Come True” & “Cinderella: A Twist In Time”.  You just ended your “Alice In Wonderland” phase.  You are definitely a normal 4 year old and love Frozen.  Your rendition of “Let It Go” is very dramatic!  Your favorite TV show is “Sheriff Callie” & I love when you sing that song!  You love broadway & going to shows with Grandma I.  You love coloring.  You don’t mind if it is a coloring book or a blank paper.  You love to play the music loud & just dance around the house.  You use your scooter to get all around the house…sometimes I think you forget you can walk without wheels!  We can’t wait to see what you can do on your new skates! (thanks Grandma M!)  You love school.  You want to go to dance class…which IS happening this summer!  The weather is now getting warmer, and you are psyched to get out of your tights & leggings and wear your dresses & skirts like a real spring baby!  You have a wacky, cool, eclectic fashion sense that sometimes means you leave the house looking like a maniac & other times a fashion model!  You love taking pictures with my camera & you are really really good.  You love dessert but you also love to tell me the danger of sugary things for your teeth!

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You are the happiest girl.  Until you’re not.  You talk about your tantrums as “freaking out” and you need some hugs to get yourself calmed down.  Once you calm down…you are sweet a sugar again.   Sometimes we get frustrated, and we have to understand that you do too!  You really hate when we interrupt you…and you respond much better to active listening!

No matter what happens in this crazy life Miss A…Daddy, Baby D & I love you more than you can ever imagine.  We can’t wait to see where this life takes you brave girl…watching you live life is such a privilege & an honor.

Here you are on your 4th birthday Miss A….more beautiful than ever.  and standing in the classic “Grandma” pose….something my Grandma that you are named after perfected.  I know you’re making her beam with pride up above the clouds!

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D71_8602wmI love you my sweet girl…more than all the sand at the beach and all the stars in the sky.  Keep shining.  Happy happy happiest birthday.

Love,

Mommy

** To see the last 3 birthdays & how we’ve felt about this little lady….check out Year 3, Year 2, Year 1!

 

 

A Proud Mama…

Recently I did a job that brought me back to my photography roots!  I started my photography journey in college while studying for my art education degree.  At the time I was dating a guy who lived in North Carolina.  When I’d go visit I’d spend many hours while he was at work driving around with his parents finding beautiful old barns and landscapes.  At that time I was shooting film & developing slides & doing all of my creative work in the darkroom.  I fell in love in that darkroom…with my camera.  I did many projects finding interesting architecture and capturing the details on film.  Being able to shoot digitally & edit has been interesting!  This job was focused on some big city architecture…

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HK22314-5bwmI really enjoyed myself.  It was completely different from my normal shoots as I was alone with myself, my camera & the architecture instead of bouncing off other people!

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I think I’m always drawn to architecture and design and I naturally am sucked in by all things linear.  Photography is a passion of mine and I hope that one day I can pass this love onto my kids.  Recently, Miss A has been showing a strong interest in picking up the camera which makes my heart burst with happiness!  It all started with an Ipod touch.  We got her one when she turned 2, and she discovered it could take photos a few months ago.  Here are some of her first shots…

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IMG_3666I have been having so much fun sharing this with her.  It’s such a rush to watch Miss A pick up my big camera and learn how to see through the viewfinder to compose her shot & to see her little fingers find the shutter release and click away!

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What she sees amazes me.  She is deliberate with her compositions and all of the above images were taken on manual with autofocus.  Pretty damn good for not even 4 years old!  Her hands barely fit around the camera!!!

So that is what Miss A & I have been up to lately!  Spring is coming…I can feel it…and I can’t wait to see what she’s got once we can get outside a little more!  Now, I’ll go back to nurturing the photography bug that has bitten my little girl!!!!

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If you or anyone you know is in the market for some family photos, babies, toddlers, birthday party?!  Come stop by http://www.lksquaredphoto.com & send me a message!  I am looking forward to meeting new people & capturing your special memories!!!

Baby Bar Friday…Couscous with Apricots

A few years ago, I went to a cooking class given in someone’s house.  The class was given by Levana Kirschenbaum, a kosher chef with a flair for the mediterranean style.  I left with a package of recipes that I should have used more frequently.  Of course they were lost in the storm, so I decided to put my memory to the test and try to recreate these flavors for Baby D.  One of my favorite recipes from the class was a lamb and chicken stew? with dried fruits.  I have a really strong aversion to blended meats, so I left out the lamb and chicken, but when I make this for the bigger people in the family I will just put some of the meatless part on the side next time!  For now, I made it more of a brunch item for Baby D!

Makes approximately 4 4oz jars.

  • 8 organic turkish dried apricots (I found them at Trader Joes)
  • 3/4 cup israeli cous cous
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 red onion chopped
  • 1tsp EVOO
  • 1/4 tsp tumeric
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • additional water for boiling apricots & lightly pureeing
  1. Put apricots in a pot and cover with water, boil 15 minutes.
  2. In a separate pot, sautee chopped red onion in the EVOO until translucent (about 4-5 minutes)
  3. Add the couscous to the pan and stir to lightly brown.
  4. Add the 1 cup of water to the couscous and bring to a boil, then cover and simmer according to package directions (6-10 minutes)
  5. Put apricots, tumeric, cloves & cinnamon in a blender with couscous.  Add 1/4 cup of water at a time until you reach the consistency appropriate for your baby.

I very lightly pureed this so that the couscous is generally whole but the apricots became pasty.  Baby D prefers more solid food to thin purees, but if you add more water and blend more, you can get this to a smooth consistency for younger babies.

It is really delicious!  Baby D devoured it = success to me!

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The Ramblings Of Miss A…

Baby D has been getting most of the love here on the blog.

2014 is going to be the year of BOTH kids!  I’m so busy making sure to not leave #2 behind that #1 is being hurried along and I need to make this about both kiddos since they are both pretty freakin’ amazing.

Miss A is 3 years and 8 months old.  The workings of her brain are something that I don’t think I can begin to comprehend.  She certainly is her Daddy’s girl!  Smart doesn’t scratch the surface.  Either does sensitive, nosy, and sometimes cranky!  She’s a girl with many emotions, and she’s not afraid to tell you which one she’s feeling…

Surprised“What???? I can’t drown the baby???? But if I do then we can just go get another one.  At the hospital.  Then we can get a GIRL baby!!!!!  Right Mommy?  Can we do that?????”

Uhhhhh no….not so much Miss A.  Drowning the baby in the bathtub is generally considered bad…and would likely result in Mommy and Daddy going to jail & you never seeing us again….  (contemplating this fate…..) “oh….ok….well then can I just pretend?”

OMG….

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Serious“Mommy…this is very serious.  Baby D is under the couch.  He is all the way under there and he can’t get out.  You must come now.  It is an emergency!  photo

She wasn’t lying.

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I am SO ANGRY!  I am angry and frustrated.  I want to wear my pink dress and you said I have to wear pants.  I won’t wear pants.  I hate pants.  I hate clothes and these clothes look horrible on me.  I will never look pretty.

Right.  Right back in 1930.  Women in pants are ugly.  Somewhere, somehow you’re getting the right message kid.

photo (2)sometimes she wins.

Happy“Do you know what I dreamed about Mommy?  About my family.  I love my family.  When I go to the Doctor and I get a shot, I am not scared.  I am brave.  I just close my eyes and I dream of my whole family hugging me and then I’m not scared.  Then I don’t cry.  And when I open my eyes, then I’m done with my shot and I was brave!  Daddy cries.  Hahaha.  He’s scared.  I’m not scared.  My family makes me happy.”

photo (4)Oh Miss A…with all of your moods, emotions, and tempers that change with the wind….Mommy and Daddy and Baby D love you more than you’ll ever know!  We can’t wait to see what 2014 has in store for you!  You’re getting very big and I hope we grow together and stay connected as much as we are right now as these years fly by us!

I love you Sweet Pickle.

 

 

 

 

 

The Big Reveal…

October 29th was the day the storm came…and October 31st was the day I went home.  One year ago today, I had to show my ID to get into my city.  We had to pry the door open from the water swelling it closed.  We had Miss A in the car and Baby D in my belly.  We had a box of black garbage bags and we packed them full of wet clothes, damp clothes, and things we decided to throw in the washing machine for 5 cycles with rubbing alcohol to disinfect.  I stood outside on my soaked lawn, in my rain boots, crying on the phone to Dr W, scared that my racing heart and panic was hurting my baby.  He prescribed me Xanax to keep in my purse…happy to report that it remains there, untouched.

Warning:  In honor of the longest year of my life so far…this is the longest post I’ve ever written!

Here is what I came home to that day…

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Two years earlier we lined the 200 feet of curb with the previous owners stuff when we moved in.  One year ago we lined the 200 feet of curb with our stuff.  I’m hoping to never have to do that again.

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Our best friends came and didn’t let me lift a finger…just lifted my spirits.  They made me laugh till I cried happy tears.  They uncovered my secrets and my love letters to and from Mister LK. They were wet…and unsalvageable….but I knew what they said.  They waited patiently as I cried.  They made me laugh when I didn’t think it was possible.  They froze their butts off.  They got filthy.  They showed us the kind of friends they are.  The best kind.

The months that followed were so busy I barely remember them.  We moved into Staten Island.  Got Miss A settled in school.  Got her transitioned to a big girl bed.  I drove almost daily to the house to make decisions, choose finishes, oversee, take deliveries…just to rush back at the end of the day, go to sleep and start all over again.  Most days it seemed like it would never end.

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Then we. moved. in.  Into a completely unready house.  We camped out in the dining room while the contractors saw we meant moving in business & finished up as quickly as they could!  Mister LK wasn’t happy, but I WAS!!!!

253328_10151440730101935_1205348920_nAnd where are we today?

In our house, which is everything I hoped it would be.  (Except for a little higher up of course!)  We have a little more in the “replace our stuff” category to do…but I am a happy LK with where we are today.  So thankful.  So incredibly humbled by the love and support we’ve been given over the last year.  Sad for our neighbors who aren’t home yet.  In love with my house and more in love with my family.

October 28, 2012 I sat in my living room obsessing over Miss A’s big girl room.  Arguing with Mister LK about how we HAD to get everything done before Hannukah so that we could give her a new room as her present!  Busting his chops about getting Uncle C on board to finish up ASAP.  Online window shopping and putting this together…

A's big girl roomLittle did I know that the following day, mother nature would force me to renovate our entire house!  Without further delay….here is what it looks like today!

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When you’re forced to renovate unexpectedly…you look for inspiration everywhere you turn.  This girl became my inspiration … and I couldn’t be happier!

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The Day After Yesterday….

Dear Gd…can someone PLEASE tell me WHY…we will have a wonderful day…one of those perfect, happy, smiling, cooperative, funny, AMAZING days….

photo (77)I mean, look at that face.  That smile can light up my life and bring me more happiness than I ever knew was possible.  And then …. the next day …. almost without fail …. this beautiful spirit turns into a monster unlike any other….

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All day.  Crying.  Screaming.  Whining.  Complaining.  Consequences be damned.  She’s already not allowed to have another sip of liquid tonight.  (whiskey might be allowed) She has tried every single thing today to make me lose my freaking mind.  She may have succeeded.

Miss A….I’ll take 2 nice days in a row.  I promise good things will rain down on you if you give Mommy 2 good days.  Magical fairies will come and drop presents and jewelry and puppies if you go to sleep and wake up in a good mood 2 days in a row!!!!!!!

love,

broken Mommy

 

 

In Times of War…

You dress in your teams colors!!!!! (she FINALLY wore the shorts I love….as a favor to me!!!!!!)

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All my fellow campers out there, who didn’t LOVE Color War!?!?!  Miss A is on the blue team with all of her little friends and they are so stinkin’ cute.  This girl has never worn blue so many days in a row in her life.  She’s dedicated though…she picks out something blue every morning.  I actually had to do laundry 3 times since the start of color war less than a week ago to make sure she had enough blue things to wear…since it is normally a color that she will refuse!

A1I guess it was better than her being on the green team and I would have had to buy her new clothes!!!

I can’t believe Thursday is her last day.  This mommy is really sad about that.  These Gummy Bears have made Miss A’s summer the best one yet.  (well….except for maybe that first summer of her life when she was carted around, sleeping all day, hanging with the family and living life the relaxed way…as an infant!)  They have the cutest group and she is going to be so sad to not get to see her friends every day.  Not to mention….I HAVE TO ENTERTAIN HER until school starts!!!!  All day!!!!  Baby D better be ready for a little torture!!!!

Beach….here we come 🙂

 

Family Beach Evening…

We unexpectedly had to cancel our plans to head to CT for our friend’s bachelor party this weekend, and while we did miss all the fun with our friends, we did get to have a wonderful LK family night here in Long Beach.  We had dinner at the “Shoregasboard” followed by a fun golden hour photo shoot on the beach!  It was Baby D’s first beach experience!

This is what he thought of the sand…

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He was a little unsure at first….but we didn’t really stick him in the sand too much!  He had lots of layers underneath him!  Once he got used to the tiny bit of sand he had between his adorable toes…he started to really have some fun!

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D6But if we’re talking about fun…I’m pretty sure Miss A takes the cake on fun!

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A15She was loving the beach…as long as we didn’t make her go in the ocean!

I was also able to get these 2 kids together!  They are really stinkin’ adorable!  If you’ve never snuggled with them….well I’m just sorry for you because they are just the yummiest babies ever!  Even when Miss A is being difficult…she’s just smushy.  I love them both more than I could even describe.

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So even though our weekend took an unexpected turn….we still made the best of it & had a wonderful time!  Sorry we missed the party boys…we do love you tons!