I discovered this program called Fish Extenders while planning for our upcoming Disney cruise.
Essentially, Disney Cruise Fish Extenders are gift swaps that are run by a group of passengers that come together to make the cruise that much more fun. I love the creativity and community that comes from it.
As I searched, I couldn't find much about it online so I created my own Fish Extender Gift Ideas website called Picture the Magic. I also created the largest list of Disney cruise tips on the internet.
Hope you'll visit it and let me know what you think.
May 3, 2010
Today is Kennedy's 6th Birthday. I can't believe my little girl is 6!!! It brings a tear to my eye knowing that she is my last and that she's no longer my "baby". The amount they change between the ages of 5 and 6 are dramatic. She goes to school and is a big girl now. She's out-grown Dora the Explorer. She has grown-up conversations with me and is learning to read. I have to hold on to the little things I guess. Like the fact that she still has a hard time saying her R's. I love that. And she will still snuggle up with me under Mr. Blankie. Last Saturday we had her birthday party with a few friends. This is the first party I have thrown for her so she was way overdue for one. We decided on a Rock Star/Club Libby Lu theme. It was so much fun! Here are some shots of the grand day.
Her invite that looked like a VIP/Backstage Pass - with a lanyard and all.
The Bouncers. You don't wanna mess with them!
It was a little wet (surprise surprise) so we had to put the Red Carpet inside.
It was nice to have the older kids there to help out.
Cameron did the music, the craft, the fog machine,
the video, the Freeze Dance game and so much more!
Cassidy and her friend Hannah were the bouncers, the
fashion consultants, and the manicurists.
The goodie bag full of sunglasses, a microphone, candy, lip gloss,
and a mix CD of Hannah Montana, Justin Bieber, and Taylor Swift
songs among others.
Of course we had to have a little sparkle and pazazz. They had matching silver sequin costumes that sparkled on stage. We also added glitter
eye shadow and lip gloss along with a Rock Star hairstyle.
The Birthday Girl herself all rocked out.
Matt took some Before and After shots of the girls. So cute!
And we can't forget the Paparazzi.
These girls really knew how to ROCK IT. They had no problems letting
loose on the stage. I enjoyed every minute of it! I think we should
have an adult version of that party! Rock on!!
February 5, 2010
Last week I had my 35th birthday and just as most birthdays come and go almost unnoticed, I thought this one would too. To my surprise this was not the case this year. First of all, I have wonderful friends who made sure to call, email and bring flowers and goodies over for me to enjoy. I was even treated to a GNO with dinner and a chick flick. I felt so LOVED and spoiled! Then a few days later I was told by Matt that on Saturday night we were going to hit the town...
I just thought this was dinner at one of my favorite restaurants but nope...
WRONG-O. When we arrived at The Purple Cafe (http://www.thepurplecafe.com)
a bunch of our friends were there waiting to for us with a big "SURPRISE!" I'm usually pretty suspicious when Matt tries to surprise me but this time I had no idea. The 10 of us dined on baked brie, bruschetta, yummy spreads like edamame and toasted walnut. Then they brought out the pizzas: potato, margherita, goat cheese and roasted mushroom, and sweet onion sausage and ricotta cheese. De-lish!
He even had a quiz to see how well everyone knows me.
After dinner, Matt took me to a dance club where we danced the night away with our friends, the Chapmans. If you know me at all, you know I LOVE to dance. It was a blast! The best 35th Birthday EVER! Thanks Babe!
January 26, 2010
In December we took a quick trip to Las Vegas. Matt had to go for work and I tagged along. It's a pretty sweet deal. I should do it more often! The hotel, rental car, half our meals and Matt's flight were all paid for. I justed used a $50 companion ticket and we got a cheap vacation without kids! (Thanks Hoopes!)
We stayed at the Venetian. It's such a beautiful hotel!
The gondola ride inside the Venetian.
The view from our room. At night at the top of the hour,
we could see (and hear) the volcano erupt at the Mirage.
Large hotels have A LOT of elevators! Just to get
to the hotel parking garage we had to take
THREE different elevators.
The Bellagio had Christmas decorations all made from
flowers. Here's a carnation snowman.
What's Vegas without an Elvis sighting?!
I think the highlight of our trip was seeing the show La Reve. It's a little hard to explain. It's got dancing, acrobatics, synchronized swimming, and free falling from unbelievable heights into a small body of water.
January 8, 2010
2009 seemed to be the year of concerts and shows
for us. I guess our friends the Chapmans have rubbed
off on us. We hit SEVEN in a matter of four months!
SO MUCH FUN!!!
Depeche Mode in August for Matt's B-day present.
Miley Cyrus in September with Cassidy.
Wicked the Musical two days later.
We went went with a whole group of friends
but I forgot my camera.
Matt and Cameron went with the Boys to see
Star Wars in Concert in October.
Then we saw Black Eyed Peas and U2 with
the Chapmans in Vancouver BC. Look how HUGE
their set was!
On the streets of Vancouver where the 2010 Winter
Olympics will be held next month.
Then of course, New Moon in November.
Thanks sweetie for waiting out in the cold
for an hour so we could get good seats!
Matt and I with my Bella and Edward Necklace.
And our annual So You Think You Can Dance tour.
Don't forget the Hot Tamales!
December 22, 2009
Yes, we are too cheap and too lazy to send out a Christmas card this year. I apologize for our lameness. Maybe next year we'll try harder to get this is in printed form, but as for now this will have to do.
Here is the Molen Christmas Letter 2009 as written by my husband. Just remember, don't believe everything you read... I can't lie, most of it is true but there are some exaggerations.
I’m married to a teenybopper.
Seriously. Either Alisha is going through some sort of mid-life crisis or she is actually going backward in time. I’m telling you, my wife is getting younger!
Less sincere men might say something along these lines to cull some romantic favor: “Baby, you keep looking younger every day!” Sure, I may have uttered that phrase in my best Barry White voice in the past, but this time I’m genuinely concerned!
The preponderance of evidence is overwhelming. I submit the following as proof:
Proof #1 - She is a total Twi-hard.
For those unfamiliar with the term, this is a slightly obsessive reader of the Twilight book series. A Twi-hard is one step above a Twilighter, which is one step higher than a “fanpire.”
How do I know? On our second trip to Forks (in 18 months), she declared her new dream car to be a silver Volvo. At Italian restaurants, she orders nothing but mushroom ravioli. And lastly, I have to assure her that 3 Team Edward t-shirts are MORE than plenty.
** On a side note, I used to side heavily on the side of Jacob, simply out of jealous spite for the fantasy place that Edward occupies in my wife’s heart. However, after hearing Alisha’s sharp intake of breath at the moment in New Moon where Jacob takes off his shirt for the first (of many) times, I am nowfirmly on Team Edward. **
Proof #2 – Her phone shows more calls to SYTYCD’s hotline than Tiger’s phone has deleted texts.
As of this writing, she has cried herself to sleep for 4 straight nights at the prospect that there might not be a So You Think You Can Dance tour this year.
Proof #3 – Skinny jeans.
1 pair is trendy. 2 pair gives you beneficial wardrobe options. 4 pair, however, just signals trouble.
Proof #4 – Miley Cyrus beats Wicked every time.
It was an extravagant birthday surprise for our 8-year old daughter. I assumedthe special trip to the Miley Cyrus concert in
The following week, I took her to see the musical Wicked (considered theatrical bliss for most females) in
Seattle on the same night that Miley was performing in . During intermission, I turned to her and said something like “isn’t this great?” In response, she forced a weak smile and said “it’s okay.” “What’s wrong?” I asked. Tacoma
“I’d rather be watching Miley!”
So who’s to blame? I’m pretty sure it’s not me. While many still consider me to be a delicious piece of eye candy, the daily war I wage against my unruly eyebrows is testimony enough that whatever fountain of youth from which she’s imbibing has not afforded me a single sip.
But if not me, then who? Normally I would just do as any good husband does and simply blame Oprah. Could this be a subconscious reaction to the news that Queen HARPO is leaving the air in 2011? (Maybe now we know why the Mayans ended their calendar in 2012.)
However, there is enough reason for me to believe that it’s the fault of those three unruly offspring of ours. After all, the issues of adolescence are beginning to engulf our lives. For example, we spent the better half of a year debating who was going to give our 11-year old son the next chapter of “The Talk.” (In case you’re wondering, I manned-up and shouldered that responsibility. I learned, however, that it isn’t wise to look up certain anatomical terms in Wikipedia in search for helpful diagrams.
Additionally, she has to deal with our two prepubescent daughters (ages 8 and 5) whose moods change faster than Nobel can award Obama a Peace Prize. Both are cute as can be, and have many moments of sweetness, and goodness, but both have recently taken to the phrases “ohnoUdidnt” or “that is SO unfair!”
As you can see, she’s out-numbered by these hipsters. Their influence has overrun everything in our lives, even control of the most sanctified of domains – our cars. The speakers of our mini-van have been pushed to their very limits by the driving beats of the Black Eyed Peas, as she feels no choice but to give into their incessant demands.
So, my friends, I ask for your help to save Alisha from those pop-culture ninjas we call our children. I don’t think it’s too late – there’s reason to believe there’s still hope. After all, she still mostly speaks in complete sentences and doesn’t rely on texting as her sole means of communication.
Oops, gotta go. Alisha needs the computer to look up when High School Musical 4is coming out.