Monday, February 22, 2010

The things I never want to forget.

I constantly say that I wish I walked around with my life on record because the conversations and things that come out of the Mad Hatter’s mouth are the things that get me through the roughest days of motherhood.

Not to mention that unless you’ve heard her, and the little voice that goes along with them, you honestly wouldn’t believe the things she manages to come out with.

Seriously – there are so many “Mad-Hatterisms” that sadly, I forget the majority or them, or just can’t do them justice by the time I get to sit down and write about them.

This morning, as we were walking out the door for her first full-day back at preschool after a week’s vacation, she’d said to me: “I hope it’s okay that I asked Daddy to take out your exercise ball for me – I wanted to do some exercise. Is that okay? Can I do some exercise when I get home from school?” I told her of course (clearly humoring her!), and off we went for the day.

We walked in about 10 minutes ago and she pulled off her coat and sweater.

“Ok Mommy, I’m going to do my exercises now. Can you turn on the TV so I can watch while I do them? And then, I have to get on my computer like I promised myself.” (Daddy just got a new computer and the lucky little one inherited a laptop of her very own – I can still remember the day mid-elementary school when we got our first family computer – a Commodore 64)

I couldn’t help but burst out laughing. “You promised yourself you were going to ‘get on your computer’"?”

“Yeah, mommy. I made a plan for exactly what I was going to do today. So, I need to do my exercises, practice on my computer, and then I can eat dinner. Okay?”

Can I just remind everyone once more that she turned 5 exactly TWO weeks ago today?

I wonder if I can work cleaning the house into her future “plans”.

Mommy and Me Monday

I am an avid picture taker.

Knowing that I’m only going to have one child, you can bet that I’m going to capture every last second of everything she does for posterity’s sake.

Most of the time she’s pretty cooperative (she does, after all, think she’s a successful runway model), but there are days when I swear she’d like to knock that camera out of my hand.

The thought does occasionally cross my mind – fleetingly – that because I’m always the one behind the camera, I’ve got tons of pics of the Mad Hatter, the Mad Hatter and Daddy, the Mad Hatter and other family members, but not many of the Mad Hatter and me.

When my dear bloggy friend Krystyn at Really, Are you Serious asked if I’d be interested in joining a fun new blog carnival she created, I was all over it! The idea is to get a picture of just me and my little girl every week, and post it on my blog with a little anecdote. This will be both a challenge, and also a great way to ensure that I’m a part of this “digital scrapbook” I’ve been creating for my family.

So, without further adieu, here’s my first Mommy and Me picture:

It  isn’t from this week, but I love it! It was taken a couple of weeks ago, the day before MH’s 5th birthday, at Johnny Rocket’s – one of our fave places to go as a family. She adores it all – the music, the “rings” (she’s too cool say onion), the ranch dressing (her mantra: “Nothing is complete without ranch dressing.” I. DIE.), and the special grilled cheese with tomato and pickles they make for her that she barely ever eats because she’s all filled up with rings (with the exception of the pickles and tomatoes, which she pulls out and devours).  And of course, the balloons. If we’re lucky, we get an awesome server who makes her a balloon within a balloon. (She. DIES.)

The irony of this picture is that it was taken right after her birthday party. The one at The Little Gym, where after the kids ran around like crazy for an hour, we were supposed to gorge ourselves on yummy cake and pizza.


The pizza place did not deliver the pizza, making for one very unhappy mommy (and that, friends, is an entirely different story for another day). Luckily, 4 and 5 year old kids love cake and were quite happy to skip right to it.

So. After the party, we were starving, and off to JR’s we went!  I was so upset about the whole pizza episode at the time, but looking back, it wasn’t such a big deal, and all it did was extend our celebrating MH! We had a yummy lunch, time with Sweetheart and Poppy, who joined us, MH got a free sundae and lots of balloons (can  you say crush on the waiter?), and I got this great picture of the two of us!

I’m looking forward to my weekly Mommy and Me blog post, and I hope my readers will join in! It doesn’t matter if you don’t have kids – fur-babies, daddies, any of you who are usually behind the camera. Let someone capture you!

And be sure to head on over to Krystyn’s blog to check out the other Mommy and Me posts that have been linked up!


Mommy and Me Monday at Really, Are You Serious?
Hosted by Krystyn

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Have your cake and help find a cure.

About 7 years ago, a very dear friend of mine moved to California. She still has family on the East Coast, and although it doesn’t happen nearly enough, she visits as much as possible.  These trips are always whirlwind, as she always has many people and activities to fit into a brief period of time, but we always try our best to ensure that no matter what it takes, we get to spend some quality time together.

A couple of months ago, I was surprised to receive a mid-day call from my friend. She wanted to let me know she was coming home to Boston in January, but this was not a pre-planned trip home, or one where she’d have time for catching up.

My friend went on to tell me a heartbreaking story about her cousin, a mom of 3 in her early 4o’s. 5 days earlier, her cousin had been rushed to ER with severe stomach pains. Three hours later she had undergone a full hysterectomy and had been diagnosed with Stage 4 Ovarian Cancer. As it turns out, one of her ovaries had twisted, which was what was causing the severe pain. Ironically, that twisted ovary had NOTHING to do with the cancer, and had it not happened, her cancer could have gone undetected indefinitely.

Her prognosis is good – between the hysterectomy, chemo and meds, she is likely going to go into remission. This does nothing to change the fact that within minutes, her entire world was turned upside down. She had to make a split-second decision to have that hysterectomy. She hadn’t fully closed the door on having a fourth child, but the cancer did. For this strong, independent, intelligent, and driven young woman, life as she knew it would never be the same.

No, my friend was not coming home for a “fun” visit – she was coming home to be a support to her cousin and family.

When Audrey from Mom Generations asked if I’d be willing to write a blog post helping to spread the word about helping Electrolux support Ovarian Cancer research, it was a no-brainer.

Electrolux has committed to donating $500,000 to this most worthy cause, and they’re doing so in a very unique (not to mention sweet!) way. Brand Ambassador Kelly Ripa and TLC’s “Cake Boss” Buddy Valastro have teamed up to create Kelly’s Cakery for a Cause. You can decorate and send a virtual cake to a friend and for each one you do, Electrolux will donate $1 to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund*.  And, each day you send a cake, you’ll be entered to win every baker’s dream – a new Induction Range from Electrolux (Electrolux is also donating $100 to OCRF for each range sold this month*).

I urge you to go create a cake. You can make a friend smile (who doesn’t love cake, and love it even more when it’s got no calories?), but more importantly, you can help raise money for OCRF. Spread the word – on your blog, through Facebook, through Twitter, when talking to your friends and family.

When you get right down to it, what’s sweeter than helping in the fight against Ovarian Cancer?

*For more information about Electrolux’s commitment to supporting OCRF, please visit Kelly’s Cakery for a Cause.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

So he wasn’t making it up after all!

Growing up, I always remember my dad calling big fluffy winter boots Muck-a-lucks.

And I? Thought it was my dad being his silly, make-up-names-for-things self. Every single time he said it.

As it turns out?

There is such a thing as “muck-a-lucks”. Except they’re called Muk Luks.

Maybe I was hearing wrong when I was younger, or my memory is clouded.

Regardless, original Muk Luks are made by a company called Reliable  of Milwaukee.

How did I stumble across this fascinating fact?

The Mom Reviews is giving away a pair on her blog!

The ones she got to review are colorful and look SO cute and comfy – in this New England winter, I wish I were wearing a pair of my own right now.

I’m more of a plain gal . . . I checked out their website and could definitely see myself kicking around in these, the fluffy cable knit toggle boot in gray.



Yes, if I win these, you’ll likely find me wearing them both in my house, and out!

Head on over to The Mom Reviews and check out how fabulous these sound (not to mention how cute she looks in hers)!

And Dad, although you’ve given me many reasons over the years to question the “authenticity” of some of your terms and phrases, I’m happy to say tell the world that you were quite serious when it came to “muck-a-lucks”. I hope you’ll be able to compliment me when I’m sporting my “won” pair!

Hearts, hearts, hearts.

We are completely in Valentine mode around here, and I must say I’m really feeling the love!
The Mad Hatter is already obsessed with hearts, and is SO digging every second of it.

From the blinged-out heart shirt Sweetheart got her to wear to school yesterday, to the awesome crafty stuff Sweetheart and Poppy took her shopping for so she could make Valentines for her friends at school (how much do they rock??), to the fact that she came out of her room this morning fully dressed for the day, and in yet another heart-inspired ensemble (socks and undies included!).

Yesterday, she came home with a small fortune of Valentine’s goodies from her classmates – so much stuff that we had to sort the pile of crack loot into 3 piles – cards (so I can be the awesome Mommy who saves them for her to giggle over when she’s older), CANDY!, and “other” – which included everything from pencils to Play-Doh, to a heart-shaped swirly straw! I’m so glad I decided to go a little nuts this year, and send in some pretty rockin’ loot bags myself.

So, while we’re currently immersed in glittery heart stickers, hand-cut valentines, and a list of other Valentine-y projects to finish before tomorrow, I am in complete love – with soaking all of it in, and most of all, with my precious little valentine.

Happy Valentine’s Day from our home to yours!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


If you've been reading along, you know that the Mad Hatter's turning five earlier this week was quite bittersweet for me.

In an effort to feel less sad about the fact that we're moving farther and farther away from her baby years and definitely into "big girl" territory, I've been trying to focus on some of the things that make five absolutely fabulous and fun.

Have a peek.




It's taken a looooooonnnng time to grow this hair long enough for me to do the thing every mommy (ok, at least this mommy) can't wait to do for their little girl - fun hairstyles.

While her hair may still be baby-fine, and we've been super diligent about having regular trims for the past 3 years (it really does work in making it grow faster and more evenly!), the bangs are completely gone, and it's all long enough for two perfect neat pretty french braids.

The fact that she now comes to me with a brush in hand begging me to do her hair? Priceless.

The fact that she actually sits still? A definite sign that she's getting to be more grown-up. She wants this.

And the fact that she's 150% girlie-girl (note the clip-on earrings she wears from wakeup till bedtime and the oh-so-teenager hairbands around her wrist)?


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Narcissism at its best

If you're a mom of any child in the preschool age range, chances are pretty good that Noggin Nick Jr. makes an appearance in your house during at least some point every day.

You know those birthday songs?

Yes, those two.

The one where Moose A. Moose does a little deal about today being "your" birthday, and then singing you "this" song.

The other being the Britishy-Pop girl group ... sing it with me "Happy buuuthday, happy buuuuthday, happy buuuuuthhhdaaayyy yeahhhhhhhh"

We hear them daily, and as with anything musical, MH loves to sing along. To my dismay, once I hear them, they tend to stick with me for the day too. I mean they're nice and all, and the concept is cute, but I and I'm quite positive anyone around me unlucky enough to experience it could really live without my random and spontaneous outbursts of birthday celebration serenade.

On Monday, she got particularly excited that is was, indeed, her birthday and Moose was really singing for her.

Fast forward to five minutes ago - she's watching and the Brit-chicks come on. Overheard:

Daddy (working from home today): "OMG, MH - how did they know it was your birthday this week?!? That is so cool!"

MH (all matter of fact): "Daddy, they've known for a long time. They've been doing this for me every day all year."

Oh to be five again.

And oh, to go to work at an office every day so you don't actually know every word of the birthday songs on you'll still always be Noggin to me Nick Jr.

Help a girl out, PLEASE!

So far, 2010 hasn't been the best for me.

I've actually been having a rough time . . . back is acting up, I'm experiencing severe migraine and tension headache issues (if you know me, you know that I do not BEG to be taken to a hospital or doctor, and I've done both in the last 2 weeks!), multiple MRIs, I'm dealing with some major health concerns within my immediate family, and to top it all off, my one and only baby turned FIVE yesterday, which has been extremely bittersweet for me.

Life can only go up from here. At least I am praying.

In the meantime, I could definitely use a little pick-me-up.

I rarely enter giveaway contests through blogs, but saw this and went nuts - I would LOVE a portable reading device but currently don't have the means to justify such a purchase.

The Mom Reviews is giving away a Sony Pocket Reader!

Yes, you read that correctly.

So, I'm increasing my chances of winning by blogging about it right here. And you can thank me, because by following this link, you could quite possibly pull this Sony Pocket Reader right out from under me! The deal is, there's only one, therefore only one winner!

If you win, make sure to let me know - I promise, I'll still love you.

And if I win . . . well, you'll probably hear my screaming before it hits my blog!

Good luck . . . to all of us!

All joking aside, I will truly feel as though I've won something when I know for sure that both my health and that of one of the most important people in my life are going to be okay. I would write a billion blog posts if it would help insure my winning that prize.

Monday, February 8, 2010

To my Mad Hatter on your 5th birthday

Five years ago today, my life changed forever. 5 years ago today, I was already holding you, studying each and every one of your perfect little features, staring at you, in awe of the fact that I was officially a Mom. That I had done it. That you were this tiny little 6 and a half pounds of wonder that evoked feelings in me I did not know could exist. Telling you how long I had waited to finally meet you, the dreams I had for you, for us. Your arrival made us a family.

MH, how can you possibly be five already? I remember my labor and delivery as though I'd just gone through it. I remember bringing you home from the hospital, your first bath, your first smile (oh how you adored that purple elephant on your gym-mat), your love for your first "friends", Bernard, Mookie, and Mo (please don't blame me, Daddy named them), the colorful characters on your Tiny Love Symphony Mobile. Your first foods, your first trip to the beach, how you used to sit and spin yourself around in circles, making a pattern in the carpet. Your first crawling, your first steps, and the first time you stood up on your own in the middle of a room (it happened to be Baby Gap - thankfully, you've shared your mommy's love for shopping from birth, and have continued to be one of my favorite shopping partners ever) and everyone there clapped for you, so you kept dropping to the floor and doing your new trick again. The first time you said "I love you" (ay-yoo). Your first kisses. All of it, MH. I have soaked in everything about motherhood, and in its highest of highs and lowest of lows, could not feel more blessed.

It hasn't all been easy. 3 years of back pain, 2 surgeries, and some other physical ailments have made for some rough times. Periods of time when I could not physically take care of you. I don't know what we would have ever done without Sweetheart and Poppy, and of course, your amazing Daddy. But, I always try to look for the silver linings. I may feel like I missed out on some time with you, but on the flip side, you have gained so much. First, your relationship with your Daddy is something that turns my heart into a big pile of mush. Your dates to "Weimo-Rama", Borders, Shu-shi, Grandma G and Papa J's house. The special snuggle routine that only Daddy can do - he has you trained to expect a full-on mini body massage every night! Your love for your Daddy is one of the most pure and beautiful things I've ever experienced. And the way he loves you - well let's just say that watching the two of you together makes me fall a little bit more in love with him every day too. Sweetheart and Poppy - you see them almost every day. If you don't "see" them, you call them on the phone and walk around hugging and kissing the phone. From your adventures to Uncle D's in Boston with Sweetheart, to shopping at Trader Joe's, to making crafts, baking (one of yours and Sweetheart's faves), sleepovers, "Ruvy Tuesdays", visiting Poppy at work, building "fancy schmancies" (castles), dressing up in Poppy's hats and Sweetheart's jewelry. I could go on and on, but the point is - you are SO incredibly lucky. Many children do not live in the same state as their grandparents, let alone share the kind of bond you do with yours. And, you are also even luckier to have 2 great grandmas - Mimi, who is here in RI and loves to spend time with you whenever she can, and GiGi, who spends time between here and FL, but could not adore you more. You were blowing her away the other night when I put you on speakerphone so she could hear you doing math flashcards with Daddy.

You blow us all away. Another silver lining I've found is that I truly believe my health experiences have helped mold you into someone with more compassionate and caring than many adults I know. My "back boo-boo" happened before you were two (ironically, as a result of my pregnancy with you). All you know is how to be gentle, caring, loving, and sensitive to any situation at hand. I've seen you make grumpy old men in wheelchairs in the physical therapy waiting room smile. You make friends everywhere we go (how many other children need to have THREE separate 5th birthday parties?). There is something about you, MH, (and although I'm always saying I've got "mommy goggles", I know I'm not alone in this thought) and I wish I could come up with a better word to describe it besides "special". You emit this radiance, this personality, this pure love of life and it's as though you literally dare people not to let you endear yourself unto them.

In the Jewish religion, we name our children for those loved family members who have passed. Your Hebrew name is for both of your grandfathers (who I know are looking down on you and could not be more a part of who you are). The first part of your Hebrew name is for my Grandpa N (Sweetheart's dad). It is Nachama, and ironically, its English meaning is "kindness and compassion". We did not select the name for this reason - we selected it because it was the female version of my grandfather's Hebrew name. However, the name could not be more fitting for you. Both of your great-grandfathers (and great uncle, for whom we chose your English name) were amazing men of kindness, compassion, honor, and morality, and taken from our family far too soon. You would have been such a source of pride and joy to each of them, and I know they watch you every day, looking out for you, and everyone in our family.

You are a complete and total paradox. The parts of your character I describe above are with you every day, yet you have a compete opposite side. The one that is stubborn, does whatever she wants even after being told not to, and definitely beats to her own drum. When I ask you why your listening ears aren't working, you tell me you must need new batteries. You are so very independent - every day I wonder what you come out wearing, because you are all about doing everything for yourself - fashion being high in the pecking order. You actually refer to yourself as my little fashionista, and that, my love, you are (did I mention that you are 150% girlie-girl, and I adore every bit of it?) You have an answer for everything (one we usually can't argue with because it's legit), and love to call our bluff. A few weeks ago you refused to clean up some toys after Daddy had asked you three times to do so. So, Daddy got a garbage bag and told you he was going to throw the toys out since they didn't seem to matter to you. Did you cry, get upset, or start cleaning? No - you started handing him more toys - ones that "you'd had for long enough" or were "too babyish". And do you know what you told him? "Daddy, don't throw them out - you should give them to someone who is not as lucky as I am." Oh yes, my love, you have taken the morals we've taught you, and things we talk about on a daily basis, and used them against us at times! How do a Mommy and Daddy handle that?

There are no consequences that seem to phase you. Time outs? Forget it. Time outs for things (i.e. toys, movies) that matter to you? "But I can have it back tomorrow or in a few days, right?". It's funny - the things that should bother don't phase you at all (although you do take everything in and process it -sometimes I don't see the effect for days or even weeks, but you do get it), yet you can be so overly sensitive about the little things. I hurt your feelings and made you cry because you didn't want "that" plate for dinner. Yesterday at your birthday party one of your friends thought they were being funny and called you a ghost - it took me almost 10 minutes to calm you down from your heartbreaking tears and tell you that they were not being mean, just being silly. And let's not forget Saturday's lunch where they sang Happy Birthday unexpectedly to you at Applebee's and you burst into tears because it scared you. You are the life of the party, but it totally has to be on your own terms! While you are so very independent in so many ways, and completely have a mind of your own, when it's just you and I, all you want is me . . . to hug you (love it), cuddle you (love it), play with you (love it), entertain you (usually love it!) but you cannot grasp the concept that Mommy has to get things done too, and can't do all of those things all of the time!

For as hard as it can be getting through the toughest of days, I'm secretly thankful. You're a leader. When we get to preschool and your friends rush to you with dress-up clothes in hand ready to go, if you're not in the mood you say hi and go on do your thing. No dust will ever settle under your feet. And I'd like to think that if what we see in you now continues, and I have no doubt it will, you will not be someone who allows themselves to be pushed around. You will go after what you want in life and make it happen. And that, my love, makes me happy.

You are sharp as a tack. Your memory is amazing. You stopped me in Panera a few weeks ago to point out a man we'd met 6 months earlier for about 5 minutes while out to dinner for my birthday. He was an acquaintance of Poppy's. You got so upset that I actually stopped the man and asked him if he knew Poppy, and lo-and-behold, it was indeed the same man. "See Mommy?" you exclaimed! "I TELLED you that was Poppy's friend!". The friends we were having lunch with couldn't believe it. This is just one example - you remember places, people, and describe in great detail something that happened over a year ago. The connections you make between things are amazing. I guess I shouldn't be surprised, given that I have the memory of an elephant, yet at your age I still find myself in awe every time you wow me again.

I wish I could freeze time and bottle you as you are right now. As much as I get nostalgic for your baby years, I look at you now and each day just gets better and better. Your current obsession is all things High School Musical. You usually watch one of them every day, but before you can do so, must spend half an hour primping preparing - the boas, the shoes, the jewels, the 3 dress up outfits layered on top of each other (I gotta give you credit, I've seen you create a strapless dress of your own accord, use same said dress at a later date as a scarf, and even later a head-dress (no pun intended)). You know every word to every song and sing and dance and perform right along with the show. You even turn on your keyboard so you can play music. I must admit that a: I love the movies too and b: What I love more is watching YOU watch them. Lately every  night after dinner, you disappear, get yourself into "gear", pull out your keyboard with its pre-loaded tempo beats, shout a "5, 6, 7, 8!" and put on a show. Halfway into your second year of ballet and tap classes, you don't walk, you dance. You think the world is your stage. You adore looking at yourself in the mirror. To say you adore all things musical is an understatement, and has been since you were born. From Barry White to Music Together, to Top 40, you have rhythm like nothing I've ever seen, and pick up song lyrics immediately (you also get that from me - the song lyrics part. The rhythm, we've got no clue on, but girl, you got it going on!) MH, you are the epitome of living life to its fullest - you do not want to miss a beat and you don't. Nothing is going to pass you by, because you will simply not allow that to happen.

This may be the longest blog post I've ever written, but that's also because it's a special letter to you - one that I wanted to share with anyone willing to read even just one paragraph about the amazing privilege it is to call myself your Mommy. I could go on for hours, and I know there is so much missing from what I want to say to and about you, but I will end with this: You are the biggest and by far most amazing accomplishment I've made in this lifetime. I never knew that a 5 year old girl could be the BEST friend I'd ever have, but you are that and more. My only wish for you is that you never change from the amazing little lady you are; that the strong qualities, morals, and values you've shown us at such a young age will only continue to blossom as you do. I like to think that Daddy and I must be doing something right to be blessed with a daughter so pure of heart, full of love, and with such a true zest for every part of her life (not to mention your intelligence, though for that, we can only take credit for encouraging your eager desire to learn and experience). My promise to you is that I will forever be right here by your side for anything you need, doing my best to guide you to make the best choices, teach you life lessons, continue to share strong values and morals, celebrate life's highs with you, and be there to try and make it all better when you're sad. And of course all that fun girlie stuff like shopping, getting our nails done, doing makeup, having impromptu dance parties, baking cupcakes - you name it, you've got it.

You are the true love of my life, Mad Hatter. I could not be more proud to be your Mommy, or more grateful that if I have one opportunity in life at having a child, you are the one Daddy and I were meant to have. Like I tell you all the time, even though you're a big girl, you will always be my baby. You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy every day. You're our first, our last, our everything.

With all my love and all of my heart,

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Mommy Learns to Sew

Actually, Mommy has been learning to sew for some time. More on that in another post, although if you're a friend on Facebook or Twitter, then you know a bit about my sewing endeavors. Sadly, I have yet to write a proper post on said endeavors due to things like work, quitting work, being sick, my back acting up, a severe migraine (currently on day 8 and counting the days until Saturday when I see a neurologist).

Anyways. I can't wait to share my current adventures with all of you, and that will be coming in a blog post of its own, hopefully very soon!

In the meantime, I'm trying hard to get back into the habit of blogging, even it my posts are on the short side. Hmmm, so people may prefer the Mommy Learns to Blog "getting back into it" style!

So, I have been wanting to try out a new technique involving creating fabric ruffles. I have a vision of an outfit I want to make for the Mad Hatter's birthday party, but given that it's just 4 days away and we've yet to make a final decision on a cake (let alone that it's a rare moment I'm actually enjoying being vertical because the pain of this headache is slightly reduced), it may not happen. And to be honest, I'm completely okay with that.

I viewed some tutorials and a couple of videos and went to town with some scrap fabric. I think I did alright with the technique, and it seemed a shame to throw the piece out, but I wasn't sure what I'd ever use it for.

Until ... I thought about all of the MH's Barbie dolls and how this might just make a swimming little spring dress.

What do you think? Darling! Perfect for a lovely spring/summer afternoon picnic date.

Take a closer look. I don't think it matters what we think because I think Ken will just love it. Given the dimensions of Barbie's hot little figure, I think next time I'd do better to work in a stretchy material. In order to get this on over her hips, it's a hair big around the chest. In fact, I think Barbie will be spending most of the time at the picnic either hiking that baby up, or just giving it up and getting lucky!


For the record, my sewing project for MH does not include a dress.

And secondly, this blog post doesn't seem quite as short as I envisioned it.

Almost WW - 5 til FIVE

That's right - just 5 days until this sophisticated little diva (who refers to herself as my little fashionista) turns 5. FIVE! Where have the last FIVE years gone?

Of course, with the things that come out of her mouth on a daily basis and the things she continues to amaze us with, she could be going on 25. At a minimum.

Here we are, just lounging in style (do you LOVE it? We were at a party/event expo and this was one of the vendor's setups! Makes me want to throw a swanky cocktail party for no reason whatsoever just so I could deck the place out in this vendor's vision!)

For the record: My little "fashionista" picked the entire outfit herself, right down to the flower clip in her hair (made by yours truly), scarf around her neck (made by Sweetheart) and (much to my dismay) self-applied tattoo on her cheek. And of course we can't forget the stickers (amongst much other loot) she collected that afternoon.

Oh, and upon "previewing" this post, I noticed the cocktail napkin on the arm of the sofa. Yes, although she refuses to eat most chicken outside of nugget form and gags at the sight of a meatball, my sophisticated girl with her sophisticated palate had just indulged in a smoked salmon, cream cheese, and spinach pinwheel. I do not jest.

Words could never describe just how deeply I love and adore my precious girl, but there is no doubt that reflecting on moments like these only makes it run deeper.

No matter how old you get MH, you will forever be mommy's baby girl.

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What a LIVE Twitter Party Looks Like

And these pics do not come close to doing it justice. The Mad Hatter and I stood there in awe of our tree until I remembered I had my camera nearby. They're harder to see in the tree . . .
camo and all!