We're Going to the Zoo Zoo Zoo...

How About You You You? You can come Too, Too, Too...

We took a train trip to the big city for the weekend!

"OOOOOH, sooooooooo CUTE!"

She is getting so tall, but not as tall as a bear, yet. 

Pure joy for all of us! 



Here's Winona Lou at the stage door, perfectly and pinkarrifically ready for PINKALICIOUS!
If it sounds like a painful and terrible show, you're right... but because this little adorable star was in it--along with some of her darling friends, it was a very enjoyable (and thankfully ONE hour long) show...

I wasn't very good at getting pictures during the show, but will ask around to see if anyone else was. In the meantime, here she is getting the big kids' autographs (a really great group of young teens whom Winnie is growing quite fond of...)

 ...and close on her heels: 

And the very best part: the party with friends and fellow cast members afterwards. 

Here's a snippet of Cupcake Dreams... 

Winnie and I were talking tonight about how one of her New Year's Dreams was to "perform on stage." Here we are: half way through the year and she's been on four different stages, performing two full-length musicals, a solo act in a talent show and an invitation-only performance for the Staff and Volunteer Appreciation event at her school (reprise of talent show number). I gushed with pride, then tried to gently break it to her that we would not be keeping up this pace for the balance of the year. 

I think she only heard the first part, because she nodded a lot then said, "They're doing Into the Woods this summer and I can not WAIT!"

Ah, "The Bug."


Happy Mama's Day

This Mama's Day, we did a lot of celebrating. With these two little ones,
the best mom in the world as my mama...

 and a wonderful and loving mother-in-law, 

what is there not to celebrate? 
Nothing. I am so very blessed. 
When something is difficult in my very blessed life, it's very much a "first-world problem."
You know the kind: stressful mornings get out of the house to be on time for work/school, health insurance premium and deductible going up, rift with the boss/ coworker, broken wash machine...

And then I hear about a woman-- many women--who die in childbirth because they didn't have access to anything sterile when it came time to cut the umbilical cord. I hear about a child who is blind due to an infection that could have been prevented if there had been some gauze in the room when she was born. And I feel like a jerk for complaining about, well, anything.

Thankfully, there are people out there who don't sit around feeling like a jerk... they take their OB skills and volunteer in places like Papua New Guinea (where one in seven women die in childbirth), and introduce the concept of hand washing, a sterile razor, tying the umbilical cord, wiping the infant's eyes and birthing on a clean surface. Then they provide the tools to make it happen (gloves, soap, twine, razor, gauze, plastic sheet). Then they leave the kit with the mom-to-be and her birthing attendant and head back to their First World practice and hope they've saved some lives.

Tonight, we celebrated Mother's Day by packing 100 of these Birthing Kits to be sent to one such amazing doctor in Australia. Friends came over and folded plastic sheets, cut soap, measured twine and stuffed 100 ziplock bags in the hope that a mama and baby-- or 100 mamas and babies!--will be safer, healthier and loved by strangers here in Oregon. 

Here's a picture of one of the kits, alongside a picture that Winona drew to put in the box: a mama, a baby (with music notes coming out of her mouth!) and a picture of one of the kits-- under a sunny sky. 

Happy Mother's Day, to mamas everywhere!


Mama's Day Nursery Rhyme Performance

The little monkey made her performing debut this week... at the Y's mama's day party. I'm learning that I need to start recording a little earlier--that's two performances in a row that misses the first few bars, but here she is: Jez Monkey! 

Talent Show

I was a little slow on the uptake of pressing 'record'---whoops!-- but this gives you a good idea of Winnie's Talent Show performance on Friday night. She was the first kiddo on stage... and she rocked it. Poise, confidence and although she started a little higher up the scale than is her total comfort zone, she pulled out a great performance!!! Brought down the house. :)