Take Me Out To The Ball Game!

  • March 27, 2008
  • Jenna Maxwell
Tuesday was the opening day of one of our nation's favorite pastimes - baseball!  The game between the Red Sox and A's, which was played in Japan, is apparently a very positive event for the game of baseball.  From everything I've read, Major League Baseball's decision to hold opening day in Japan is another step in successfully growing the game internationally.  Opening day is always exciting for the Major League Baseball season.  Every team starts off with the same record and every fan jumps on the bandwagon in hopes that their team will go all the way this year (although everyone knows that a "true" fan never jumped off the bandwagon to begin with - even if their team was doing badly)!  Monday, March 31 is the opening day game for my favorite team - the Cincinnati Reds.  They play against they Arizona Diamondbacks and it will be a great game!  Our weather is finally warming up and it's going to be a beautiful spring day in Cincinnati.  Every year my husband and some of his friends take off work and make a day of it by going to lunch down on the river and then walking across the bridge to see the Reds play their opening day game.  If you've got an opening day game coming up, be sure to check out all of our baseball costumes and accessories - you'll be the life of the party!  

Spring Break Florida Style

  • March 25, 2008
  • Jenna Maxwell
I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter holiday.  I had my family over for a big ham dinner and everyone had a really nice time.  The best part for the kids was the Easter egg hunt we do every year.  There is one "golden" egg that we hide for the older children that has a $50 bill in it and it's hidden so well in the backyard that it's always the last to be found.  My nephew Taylor found it this year.  It worked out well for him because he's getting ready to go to Panama City for Spring Break with some of his friends and of course who couldn't use some extra cash for that!  Speaking of spring break - my children are off school next week for theirs.  We're not going any where this year so I've decided to take them someplace fun each day, even just for a day at the local park so they can run off some energy and play with their friends.  It seems the younger they are the easier it is to entertain them!  My brother has a daughter that is a senior in high school and she's going to Florida with some of her friends for the week.  His wife is actually going too with a couple of the other moms and staying at a hotel a little further up the beach.   I remember going to Daytona Beach my senior year with a bunch of my friends and we had a great time just laying on the beach all day and walking up and down the strip at night meeting so many kids from other schools.   Back then it was all innocent fun and none of us got in any trouble.  But I'll tell you what, I am not looking forward to my kids heading off to Florida for their spring breaks when they're in college.  Just watching MTV and seeing how wild college spring breaks are now makes me a little nervous.  It's a whole different ball game now!  Although thankfully I've got plenty of time to worry about that since my oldest boy Caden is only eight years old.  My brother and sister both have children in high school and college this year.  While they're freaking out about letting their kids go, I just say "don't worry they'll be fine".  However, when it's my turn to let my kids go to Florida for spring break when they're older you can bet I'll be freaking out!

Good Friday of Holy Week

  • March 21, 2008
  • Jenna Maxwell
Good Friday is observed every year on the Friday before Easter.  It is a holy day celebrated by many Christians around the world.  On this day, Christians commemorate the suffering and death on the cross of Jesus Christ.  It's called "Good" because of all the wonder and meaning that flowed from it - "love is stronger than death".  This is the day when Jesus was handed over for trial, tortured and forced to carry his cross through the streets of Jerusalem, nailed to the cross on a hill known as Calvary, and allowed to die a slow and agonizing death while being mocked by the crowd.  Holy week began last Sunday with:
  • Palm Sunday - Jesus entry into Jerusalem
  • Maundy Thursday - The Last Supper
  • Good Friday - Crucifixion
  • Holy Saturday - Day of waiting
  • Easter Sunday - Resurrection
I remember going to church with my family when I was little and getting so excited about the Palm fronds that you would get on Palm Sunday.  My sisters and I would each get a Palm and take it home to braid and hang over a picture of Jesus we had in our hallway.  My brothers, of course used their Palms to smack each other with on the ride home from church, that is until my mom would take it away from them and they would get in trouble.  Easter is two days away and I'm looking forward to my family getting together in celebration.  I love the early morning when the kids get up and are wanting to go downstairs to see what the Easter Bunny left for them in their baskets.  Spring is officially here and the weather is finally getting warmer.  Happy "Good" Friday!! 

Easter Snow Bunny??

  • March 13, 2008
  • Jenna Maxwell
Wow, can you believe Easter is only 10 days away?  This year is already moving way too fast!  Many college Spring Break's are happening at this very moment and I'm pretty sure a lot those college students headed south to enjoy some fun in the sun.   The first official day of Spring is one week from today on March 20.  We had a few "spring-like" days here - just enough to have me looking forward to warmer weather and putting all this cold, ice and snow behind us. However, Mother Nature had a different idea in mind.  I don't know about you, but we were right in the middle of that blizzard snow storm that blew through the Midwest this past weekend dropping over a foot of snow!  I couldn't believe it!  Here it is the month of March and I'm more than ready to put away my winter clothes when "surprise", we get the biggest snowfall in years!  Thankfully, it was quick (but not painless) with only two days of lots of snow and bitter cold temperatures on Friday and Saturday.  By Sunday the sun came out and when I look outside my window today there are only small patches of snow to be seen - except for in my front yard.  During the massive snowfall my son and his friends (with the help of my husband) decided to build the biggest snowman ever measuring in at a little over seven feet tall.  To this day that snowman is refusing to melt so we decided to make it a Snow Bunny to go along with our Easter decorations.  With the help of bunny ears, a bunny tail and a jumbo carrot that we found at Halloween Express we have ourselves the Easter Snow Bunny!   Don't forget to get all your Easter costume accessories soon!  Halloween Express has everything you need to make this Easter one to remember!   

Irish Toasts

  • March 11, 2008
  • Jenna Maxwell
Everyone knows that St. Patrick's Day, Ireland's national holiday, is a day of celebration.  It's a tradition across the country and a great excuse to party in the middle of March.  Around the globe on March 17th people will be celebrating with parties, parades, and carnivals.  Every Irish pub will be packed full of people, Irish or not, eating corned beef and cabbage and drinking pints of Guinness.  In addition to those pints of Guinness, many people will enjoy a little Irish coffee or some smooth Irish whiskey.   But before you take a drink of anything Irish on St Patricks Day you must adhere to the Irish culture and give an Irish toast or blessing.  Here are a few:
  • May your glass be ever full and May the roof over your head be always strong. 
  • May you be in heaven half an hour before the devil knows you're dead.
  • Here's to me, and here's to you, and here's to love and laughter.  I'll be true as long as you, and not one moment after.
  • May you live as long as you want and never want as long as you live.
  • As you slide down the bannister of life, may the splinters never point in the wrong direction.
  • May you live to be a hundred years, with one extra year to repent.
  • May the friendships you make, be those which endure; and all of your grey clouds, be small ones for sure.
So this St Patricks Day before you take a drink of that green beer, raise your glass and shout out an Irish toast for all to hear!

The All Important Coloring of the Easter Egg

  • March 04, 2008
  • Jenna Maxwell
Every year at Easter one of the most important traditions at our house has always been the coloring of the Easter eggs.  The kids love it!  My daughters Olivia and Sydney are in it for the long run.  They start early Saturday morning, the weekend before Easter, by getting all the eggs boiled and cooled.   We always color two dozen eggs so that the kids each get to color eight eggs each.   The kitchen table is transformed into their very own egg coloring craft table so that everyone has plenty of room.  But most importantly (and I have learned this the hard way over the years) we always have three boxes of Paas Easter Egg Coloring Dyes so that no one gets accused of "hogging" any specific color and they each have their own colors and crayon to design with. The girls always go for the bright spring colors and of course they have to be perfect, while Caden my son tends to dip his egg into as many colors as possible for a darker color.  The crayon that comes with the kits always gives them plenty of different ways to decorate their egg before dipping them into the color.  Once all the eggs are done, which can take up to an hour to achieve perfection in egg coloring with youngsters, they put them in a basket on the kitchen table for all to see.