Friday, March 9, 2018

Last one for a while...

Mostly what's happened since the end of January is Mardi Gras. And then the blessed season of Lent, which I cherish, as I'm sure I mentioned last year, even more now that we live down here. Mardi Gras is fun! and exciting! and lights! and late! and crazy foods! And then ... aaaah, respite. Lent is supposed to be a time of preparing for Easter, but the first good week of it is definitely a recuperation from Mardi Gras. So, here goes re-capping all of our parades and then the day-to-day things we've gotten up to since then ... plus, maybe, a bit of interesting news in the form of an announcement (hint: 👶)
Lil big stuff + a big helper
 Garden happenings
 Lil neighborhood school parade
 Muses (on Thursday)
 Hermes (on Friday) with Mom and Dad, who hadn't been to parades IN Nola in forevah
 After Endymion (Saturday)
 Ah, some home-play on Sunday & Monday
 Zulu & Rex on Mardi Gras day!

 Ash Wednesday. Yes, Jack gets them, too, but he also rubs his face on the pew cushion😏
 Off school for the week 💜

Genius, fun me decides to go to the zoo spontaneously after school pick-up ... at 4pm ... on a Monday
(when it closes at 4 [not 5] and is never open Mondays anyway). We played "Secret Garden" on some big, ol' oaks and had a snack. Works.

Daytime buddies
 THIS yahoo
 💙 She's proud of her folding job

ON the ferry as a cruise ship was turning to head down river and then it crossed paths with the Natchez!
 Lil big stuff walks all the way home from the playground now ... and the 4yo wants to ride.
 We finally made it to the zoo! Albeit sans Paul.
 Saturday morning sillies
 How reading gets done around here sometimes😉
 First concert's already this weekend!

And then there's the fine little announcement that I will not be posting often on this blog for the next several months, as I'll be posting on this blog until, say, October, when Baby Knoll #4 will join us! We're all happy, except Jack because he doesn't know or care, and things have been going very well so far, despite exhaustion. But that could be normal anyway, ha. Hooray for more life - praise God!

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Season shift

By now, it's gone from Christmas to Mardi Gras season over here, with a few celebratory days thrown in there, like the New Year, Epiphany / 3 Kings Day, snow days (plural!), neighborhood parade day, two birthdays, and Australia Day.

My modus operandi is to start, well, from the beginning and catch us all up. It was lovely having Paul home with Ada, Jack, and me so much in the last month, and we certainly tried to take advantage! New cafés, Story Land, N.O. Museum of Art; I'm getting ahead of myself. Here come the photos, and I'll just intersperse a few stories where they fit.

Merry Christmas to us! Except ... enormous. Now to change lots-o-things so that they fit.
Christmas in the Oaks! It's so, so lovely to go after Christmas Day, during the 12 days of Christmas.
 New Year's Eve movie treat, chocolate (Jack's face), and bubbly.
 NOMA, which they enjoyed!
 New neighborhood café for lunch
 House Blessing on the Feast of the Epiphany
Christus Mansionem Benedicat / Caspar Melchior Balthazar
...and then came down all the Christmas décor.
 Story Land!
 Followed by beignets at Morning Call, of course; while in City Park...
SNOW in New Orleans. Actual snow, leading to what seemed like the apocalypse on roads and in stores, but was in actuality a three-ish day stretch of inescapable chill, running taps through the night to avoid the plague of burst pipes, and no school! 5yrs experience in MN made me feel a bit silly for taking pictures, but I did it for the kids in case it all melted before they woke, ha; and after all, it doesn't happen here very often! It hadn't all melted, and we enjoyed our time, despite the cold, with extra baking, soup, and icy walks, where Paul promptly slipped, fell, and busted a lip. 
Jack liked the soup.

"Down in New Orleans where the blues was born, it takes a cool cat to blow a horn. On LaSalle & Rampart Streets, the combo's there with the mambo beat ... the Mardi Gras Mambo!"
Yeah, yeah, we ready!
 Neighborhood Confetti Kids Parade! The only parade we're on the route for 😉 followed by a king cake party at Confetti Playground
General shenanigans
 Dylan and I enjoyed our first LPO event of the new year - Fantastic! Frightening still. So good.
And then, of course, we celebrated birthdays. Our firstborn is now 6 years old, and our daughter is a whopping 4. Unbelievable. They are so awesome and bring such joy and love, and it was a pleasure celebrating them this year. Papa prepared pancake batter the night before so we could have a special breakfast despite its being a school-day. Then, Paul was "snack buddy", so he got to bring in a king cake to share with his class; and Ada had storytime/playground Thursday with a king cake party, too! That night, we had dinner at a new-ish taco place nearby, and everyone had a good day. The next day was Australia Day, but other than Tshirts and hanging the flag, we didn't mark that in any special way this year. Then, Saturday brought on the parties! As Paul is in school, we invited a few neighborhood friends but also his class to his party. Consequently, it was the first year we've had separate parties for our double birthday! But they wanted to do the same things, ha; so, our first party at midday had about 4 friends over to watch Frozen and eat mac-n-cheese, and our second party that evening had a few more than that 😳 to watch Moana and have pizza. They both wanted a white cake with a hole in it, but Ada requested chocolate icing while Paul requested white. It was a fun-filled, exhausting-in-a-good-way day! Big high-fives to Nana, Pappy, and Tante Ginny for all their help.
 Asutralia Day heat wave outside play with a new bday digger from Down Under!
 mostly 4yos watching Frozen
 mostly 6yos "watching Moana"
 Best Tante! And the littlest even says "Tata" now💕

That's all for photos this month. I do, however, have 2 tidbits of news! 
1. I started a Well Read Mom chapter here in New Orleans, and I'm excited for its growth, to get back to reading, myself, and for relationships within the group.
2. I joined the New Orleans Volunteer Orchestra! I play French Horn ... remember? No? Yeah, I almost didn't either. Rehearsals are weekly for about 6wks before a concert, and there are several of those sessions throughout the year. It brings unexpected joy, and I'm glad to be doing it.