18 February 2013

Valentine Gingerbread III + Mommy & Me Monday

valentine toddler, valentine poses for kids, toddler fedora
Hope you all had a sweetheart of a weekend!

Valentine's is a bit drawn out here like most holidays. It's Brandon's and my dating anniversary, too. I love cliche and since I was crushing on him I asked him to be my Valentine when we re-connected years after having been co-workers. Obviously he said YES! Well...I think he said he'd think about it at first. Yeah, that sounds like Brandon. 

Our next Valentine's Day I'd bought us a gingerbread house kit for Christmas but I was pregnant and unpredictable. I was working night shifts like a maniac and felt sick and run-down during my first trimester. Our Valentine's that year was sweet. We walked to a restaurant and enjoyed the weather; it was unseasonably warm.

By the time we got home I was too tired so we put it off. Tomorrow I was too tired, too. The evening of the 17th I thought I could do it. We'd gotten dinner out together and stopped at the store for something orange (I was obsessed with oranges!) and I had a craving for frosted animal cookies.

Well, as the story goes, our apartment was burning down...taking everything with it. No more chances.
Then, last year, when I shared that story with a friend she mailed us a Valentine Gingerbread House. mmK so it was technically Rudolph, but Rudolph is forgotten on most holidays other than Christmas. He's still around, people!

Last year was hard. It was really, really hard. I cried a lot. This year was easier. There is a deep ache in my chest but I suspect it will always be there in varying degrees. We have each other...and, thanks to great planning ahead we had our gingerbread house! I found it on my last trip to Ikea just after the holidays so it was a $2 on sale gingerbread at that.

The tradition continued!

ikea instructions, how to assemble a gingerbread house
Ikea directions: making sure we're all as confused as possible.
I'd really like to meet this smug artist.

ikea confusion, ikea gingerbread
This moment: I thought I was brilliant with my bottle of molasses. FAILED!
It was a good  thought, though! I think a mom I knew used to use hot molasses to glue hers...
I will research this further.
My technique was so take soft frosting, paste the pieces, then stick it in the fridge to harden!

This year Tristan wanted to play! He's catching onto sweetness.

gingerbread houses

Here it is: my mommy & me moment for the week. LOVE being this little boy's mom!

I saved the chimney pieces for instant gratification. He only ate the frosting.
That's my boy!

Husband seal of approval! We each decorated half - that's my half showing!

LOVE. It's everywhere. It doesn't have to be a Hallmark card. If you love your pup go put on your favorite scarf and go out for a romp in the park. Make a watercolor date with your daughter. Bake something for the landlord or neighbors. Invite one of your most precious friends over to paint your nails, dump glitter everywhere, and laugh. I did that one, too! Thursday, in fact! With all the pink, red, hearts, and sparkle of the season along with the surprise snowflakes that accompany February I can't help but get a little dreamy.

Tristan sent some hug cards.

...and I took a thank you note to the firefighters who tried to save my home. It took me two years to do it but I wanted them to know I appreciate how hard they try to save all the pieces that built up our lives. They risk their lives for it. I won't pretend I understand that level of selflessness, but they are unsung heroes. 

Valentine's of sorts.

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