Today is the day

We celebrated on Saturday, but Miss G’s actual first birthday is today!

She’s in full-on toddler mode, walking around, talking, laughing, playing with a big smile and infectious laugh.

What a wonderful, fun year it has been! She brings us so much joy everyday!

Happy Birthday, Greer!

Parent Traps and St. Patty’s Day Fun

This is a three-part post, because I have a lot of photos from yesterday. This is from the parade, which I’ll talk about later.

Do you know what this is? It’s a leprechaun trap. It’s meant to lure one of the wee folk to catch him (or her, but I think leprechauns are exclusively male?), so you can find out where his pot of gold is. I got the idea from Not Martha’s blog, she has a beautiful example, and while I didn’t follow her directions exactly, I still ended up with a pretty cool cake.

I think it should more accurately be called a “parent trap”, because the beauty of it lures parents into creating a fun project for the kids. You get sucked in and look up and it’s two hours later!

Here is the cake trap without any stuff on it. An angel food cake pan is used, because the hole will trap the leprechaun.

I placed a graham cracker across the top, to hold up the lure, which was the shiny necklace Alex wanted to use. We then placed another graham cracker to act as a ramp for the imp to climb up and get the loot. We went to bed that evening convinced that we would find a grumpy little leprechaun the next morning.

Alas, this was what we found when we woke up and came downstairs…

Apparently, leprechauns love cake almost as much as gold, because the little bugger ate his way right out of the cake. But on the plus side, in his rush to escape, he left Alex’s necklace. And a taunting little note….but again, Lucky liked the cake, so I’m not too offended.

He left us a wonderful surprise when we cut the cake – a rainbow!


Rainbow cake for breakfast! Who needs a leprechaun?

Oh yeah, and he left one other surprise for us on his way out…

Later that day…
Sunny skies and beautiful weather meant a great day for a parade! We went downtown to see the Des Moines St. Patrick’s Day Parade. We got a perfect spot near the beginning, and ran into my Aunt Brenda and Uncle Gary. My sister and her family joined us, and we had a blast! Alex loved it and Greer just took it all in.

Excited for the parade to start…

Picture-perfect day for a parade…
Got my green on…

Greer is not impressed…

Getting some goodies…

Kids waiting behind the line for candy…

Part of the town of Melrose’s entry. This southeastern Iowa town calls itself the “Little Ireland” of Iowa and they had quite a display. They had a guy in a retro ice cream cart chucking freezer pops at the crowd, fire trucks, a group playing Irish folk music, and just tons of energetic people bringing lots of Irish cheer! I don’t know who won for the best entry, but I hope it was them!

One more shot of the parade in full force…

Even later that day…
A post-parade feast of corned beef and cabbage was in order at Grandma’s house, some drinking of the Coors Light and Guiness Black Lager, a quick nap (for the baby, of course), and then it was time for the big kids to have a little fun…

A Green Russian – very, very tasty.

It’s not St. Paddy’s Day unless you do an Irish car bomb….BOOM!

Old people can still show the young’uns how it’s done…OK, not really, but we like to think we can?
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Garden Planting Time

We planned and planted our vegetable garden last weekend, and plenty of “Lars Banned” substances were included!

First box
Top left to right – Big Boy tomato, Fourth of July tomato, cherry tomato, pumpkin
Next row – yellow zuccini, acorn squash, okra, cantelope
Next row – basil, lavender, oregano, strawberries
Bottom row – jalapeno peppers, red bell peppers, spicy yellow wax peppers, strawberries

Second box
Top left to right – sweet corn, green beans, sugar snap peas
Next row – cucumbers, brussel sprouts, purple eggplant, broccoli
Next row -yellow onions, cabbage, watermelon
Bottom row – stevia, rosemary, yellow squash, green bell peppers

Boston lettuce was planted all along the edges of both boxes.

Not to be outdone by the grown-up garden, Alex got a Sesame Street gardening kit with watermelon seeds to plant. We are keeping track of the plants and their progress. Jerry Kluver, eat your heart out!