Monday, February 21, 2011

Hard week...so needed to end it with joy and a "party"

This week has been difficult... my husband lost a good friend and former employee at his previous job. Only 20 years old, he was buried on Weds. On Thursday we almost lost his younger brother... so we arranged schedules to stay at my Mom's Friday into Sat. to see him. Lots of emotions....little sleep...Sunday I had already planned a dinner for my sister's birthday at our home...so back up the rd. Sat. late. Hayley had a bunch of ideas for celebrating with their American Girl dolls and was busy planning and preparing. She was up very early Sunday getting things ready. We needed something happy after a difficult week.

We had 2 days of warmth this week and the girls were quite excited.... these were taken earlier in the week while waiting for Hayley to get home from school. Today we have about a 1/2 inch covering the ground again and calling for more tonight. Ugh....

Yes... she dressed herself of course...lol

Even a sign of Spring!


Notice how Hayley sticks to the sidewalk and Kathleen just has to trudge through the snow? LOL

I LOVE this picture, I captured her running behind Hayley; all excited to tell her about her day!

Looking at these beautiful faces helps to ease the cares of the day.... :-)

Herbs in my windowsill....:-)

Skippy enjoying the warmth at my Mom's house.

The girls were very happy to visit their Nana and PopPop. :-)

Sunday began the preparations... my sister's favorite cake is red velvet so I prepared that first...

Red Velvet Cake
1 cup vegetable shortening
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cocoa powder
2 ounces red food coloring
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vinegar

Frosting
2 tbsp flour
1 cup milk
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Heat over to 350 degrees
In mixing bowl, cream together shortening, eggs, and sugar.
In separate bowl mix together the cocoa and food coloring.
Add paste to shortening mix.
Sift flour, and salt together over parchment.
Add to batter alternatively with buttermilk in 3 additions.
Add vanilla extract.
Fold in baking soda and vinegar
Pour batter into 2 greased 9 inch round pans
Bake for 30 mins.
Cool, then invert cakes

Frosting
Over med. heat cook flour and milk until thickened. Let cool.
Use electric mixer and cream together butter, sugar and vanilla until fluffy and light.
Beat in flour mixture.
Frost cake :-)


Table for American Girl dolls :-)

Hayley took care of these details herself! :-)

They made their own pizzas!



Neve opening some Valentine's gifts from us :-)

Hayley had the idea to slice up apples, coat with peanut butter and add marshmallows on top!

She picked out the flowers and made the centerpiece...

Pizzas are done! :-)




Finished apples :-)



Couldn't resist a picture of this... Neve ate her whole pizza, then put the crust back together, lol.


This is how they left their plates (overlook the crumbs, lol)

Cookie baking time!


Enjoying the goodies :-)

Kathleen enjoying food with egg in it! :-)

They finished up with an American Girl fashion show!

Hayley was disappointed she didn't get all her planned activities done, but time flew quickly as it always does.
We miss our family being far away, so we make the best of the time we have together. Miss you Neve!! Can't wait to see you all again....

"Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is bliss, taste it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, full fill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it".
Mother Teresa

Hope you have a wonderful week filled with many blessings!

Jill

22 comments:

Sheila said...

I'm so sorry for Jerry's loss. I pray his brother is doing well. You have such pretty girls. I love that picture of Kathleen--her feet aren't even touching the ground. Your niece is lovely also. All are in our thoughts and prayers. Take care.

claudia b said...

I am sorry for all that's happening - what a lovely party1

Annie Jones said...

I hope this week goes better for your family.

Kat has those same Hello Kitty rain boots. And yes, indeed, she has worn them with a tu-tu. :)

SonyaAnn said...

I'm so sorry about the loss of your hub's friend and his younger brother. That is too much for one week. You are in my prayers.
And the girls looked like they had a wonderful time. It is amazing that you did so much with so little time.

Cherie said...

So sorry about the way the week started out. Those kinds of things are make us look at life a little differently and enjoy the simple things.

I love the party your girls had with their dolls. We are AG lovers here too. The girls are all so darling and I love how they left their spoons on top of their cups.

Camille said...

Such a difficult week for you Jill! Sorry for the loss of your husband's friend! How tragic these things are...may you know the peace and comfort of the LORD Jesus through it all.

How precious these times are with your girls...you are such a fun Mom. :) Too cute that pizza with the centre all eaten. LOL!

Many blessings,
Camille

Life In a Little House said...

Sorry to hear you have had such a rough week. My prayers go out to you and your family. What a wonderful party and such a great idea to lift your spirits! Everyone looks like they had a wonderful time even the dolls are smiling :) Hope you will find more Joy in this week to come ~Love Heather

Mandie said...

That sounds like a wonderful time. I bet the kids had a great time. I am sorry to hear about your week. I am glad his brother is still with you all but sad to hear about the young man. I love the poem, so true. I pray you have a great week ahead!

PS. I love the way Kathleen is dressed! HAHAHA, I remember when my little ones did that. So precious

Jill said...

Thank you all! I appreciate your kind words and support. :-)

Miranda said...

I'm so sorry for your loss and that the week was a tough one. It does seem that your party had lots of fun and high spirits though. My daughter would LOVE having all those American girls. How fun!

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

Dear JIll,
I'm so sorry for the loss of your hubby's friend!! That's always hard !!!

I'm glad that you could still find some joy and have that super fun party :) :) I love tea parties, and your girls just made me laugh. They are so precious!!! Everything looked good and your girls did a fabulous job with all the details :)

Oh, that pizza that just had the crust remaining. That had me laughing hysterically, because my dad eats pizza and always leaves the crust behind :) :) :)

Love and hugs to you. Have a great week, Heather :)

McVal said...

I'm so sorry about your husband's friend.
Looks like an awesome party tho for the girls! Love their spring outfits!

Kim said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your DH's friend. That is so so sad.

Your girls are too cute. That AG party looks like something that would go on over here. I just love the sweetness and innocence.

If there's any red velvet cake leftover, I'll be right over. :)

Along A Widowed Road said...

Jill,
So sorry to hear about your husbands former co-worker. The emotions of a death and a potential loss is overwhelming isn't it. Your emotions must be raw. God heals everything in time.

Kathleen and Savannah are of the same mindset with getting dressed. I have a picture somewhere of Savy when she dressed herself. I love the times like this.

What a great American Doll teaparty. How fun.

Here's to blessings throughout the week.

Take care, Viola

Jamie said...

Jill~Hey there girl.I am sorry for your loss.
It looks like your girls did an really great job organizing a nice party.
BLessings to your and your family

Chocolate Covered Daydreams said...

I'm so sorry that you and your hubby had to say goodbye to someone special. Praying for hearts mended.

The pictures of the American doll tea party looks like so much fun. They are so creative. I love how Hayley decorate the apples with peanut butter and marshmallows.

Thank you, Jill for your wonderful words of encouragement. That and the prayers have been a blessing for me. You're really appreciated.

Donna said...

Dear Jill, My heart goes out to you. We lost my best friend's husband several years ago. He just collapsed on the front lawn at the age of 39. Their kids were the exact same ages as ours, 18 months, 4, 6, 8, 11. Mary grieved for four years and we grieved with her. I still miss Mark. I know when someone young dies, it leaves such a huge whole in your lives. My prayers are with you Jill and with your friend's family. And of course, the photos of your daughters are just precious.

xo
Donna

Julie Harward said...

I always enjoy your post..makes me feel like a little girl again! :D

Linda said...

Hi Jill,
So sorry to hear of your very difficult week.Keeping you in my prayers.
Love your post today and all the beautiful photos you have shared!
Blessings and hugs.

Jenny said...

So sorry Jill for your hubby and you. What a tough week. The party however looked fabulous! I love how the girls helped you set up, I adore red velvet cake too. Yummy. Hope this week is better.

Tanya (a Taste of T) said...

Red velvet cake, tutus and pizza = heaven!

Liz said...

So sorry for the loss of your husband's friend. It's never easy and so much harder when it's someone so young. Sounds like the rest of the week went better though. The party sounds like a success, love the the pictures!