Monday, January 9, 2012

The Magic of a Homemade Tent 

Riley has just turned 3 and is honestly the first child I've ever seen with such a vivid imagination when it comes to playing with her toys.  I believe in previous posts' I've commented on how well she plays with toys and she ceases to amaze me at her keen seen of imagination during playtime!  When she is playing her world revolves at that moment around what is playing.  Shopping, dolls, dress-up or doctor she is into it 200%.  It's a joy to just sit and watch her play!  In all seriousness she could have a sitcom of her own. Riley is talented and into her characters!  Meme is obviously very impressed!  

Well,  the time has come for her to spend the night with Meme.  I'm sure you're asking why is she just now doing this.  The fact is she just wasn't ready. Maybe Meme wasn't ready. nawww~  She is a Momma & Daddys girl when it comes down to it.  No matter where she is or how much fun she is having, her little head is always turning around and making sure they are within eye-sight!  Not to mention I've just recently moved back into the same state and less than 10 miles from them so hopefully this will be the beginning of many!   : )

I'm not sure who was more or Riley!  Really! The fact that her older sister Jaylen was to be spending the night seemed to make it not so traumatic. I was honestly prepared to have to take her home at 2 or 3 in the morning if she just couldn't handle being away from Mom and Dad and that was okay!  I've had to take home girls much older in the past at the wee hours!

We had hinted around on Christmas about her coming over and how we would build a tent in then den, bake cookies, color and all the things girls do with their grandmothers!  She arrived and was raring to go.

Energy: FULL
Excitement level: HIGH
Juice Cup:  CHECK
Toothbrush:  PACKED

Jaylen,  being the big sister didn't understand all the fuss but certainly played along!  She did realize that keeping a positive attitude helped Riley not get frightened or feel lost without Mom and Dad.  Jaylen would repeat "Isn't this fun Riley?" over and over!  It was so nice having them together and alone for some girl time!  

First thing I learned a lonnnnng time ago is to never mention doing something that you don't intend on doing because little minds never forget those grand ideas!  They will certainly hold you accountable!  We began our night with Riley changing into her princess gown.  One thing about Riley-she is very, very serious about her clothing even at the young age of 3!  When she has picked out an outfit she is all about the "Character" whom she is dressed up as!  So, now that Riley is dressed it's time for Pizza and baking!  Not long after the pizza had settled we decided to get the baking going and I tell you those girls are just silly...funny and silly!

 I have to admit I took the easy way out this time.  My cupboard held all the ingredients to make homemade cookies from scratch like Jaylen and I usually do.  Yet, when I dropped by the store they had marked down all the Pillsbury Sugar Cookie Dough to .50 cents.  How could I resist that deal?  At least we had sprinkles and sugar!   It warmed my heart to hear their little giggles and whispering little secrets to each other has they pinched up the sugar and covered the entire tray with it's little grains!  Neither of them chose to use sprinkles on the cookies and I soon discovered why (as the picture below will show)  the sugar was much more tasty!!

After several minutes I had to step in as the wiser one and limit the sugar or it was going to be a really long night due to energy overload or tummy-aches!  I'm pulling the two sugar bowls away and their little fingers were digging deeper and deeper all the while Riley is trying to lick the fingers from her left hand!  I think I gained 3 pounds just watching them!  

By the time we finished cleaning up the kitchen and brushing teeth I realized neither of them had eaten one cookie!  Sugar...yes!!  Cookie...nope.  Oh was the memory of creating that first batch that Meme will cherish!

We had promised to build a famous MeMe tent.  A family tradition that I learned from my Step-Mom (Pam aka Ninny) in the den so I put the girls to work on thinking out the plan.  We sat on the couch and began planning what we could do to make this right where we were sitting.  One of my fondest memories is how Pam would have us "Think" about know, really plan and challenge me to create something.

  Jaylen was full of ideas as we had done this on many occasions.  It was fun to watch Rileys little mind working and looking around the house for things to use.  Well...below you will see what we accomplished.  They were told to find 6 items to build walls along with the couch.  Our tent consisted of the old coffee table, the computer chair, two chairs from the bistro table, the camera tri-pod and the extra curtain rod.  I don't know how many sheets, blankets and quilts they pulled out of the linen closet but what's a tent without linen?    

We had fun creating our little nightspot and watching it fall (intentionally by me) a few times.  They would laugh so hard when it fell!!  Oh me.... their giggles are something!  We finally managed to get it to stay up and they neither wanted to lay on a blanket but be under 2 or 3.  I have been accused of keeping the house like a walk-in-freezer from time to time!

Once we had again brushed our teeth, our hair and put on the PJ's we began  to settle in for a night of movies.  Strict orders of not going to sleep before midnight always go with movie time!   I tell you it works every time with Jaylen.  She'll be out before the first movie is over!
Riley and I watched The Smurf movie and then while in the middle of Tangled, Miss Riley fell asleep.

Our evening together was so memorable.  Meme enjoyed every second I had with the girls and I'm looking forward to not just more nights with them but when all 4 granddaughters will be staying!  The sounds of giggles and the scent of nail polish thrill me for the up-coming sleepovers!    Yea!

The following morning we indulged in some Cracker Barrel for brunch as it was 10:00.  Jaylen ordered pancakes and okra.  Wow...what a combination!
She knows my two rules when we go out.  #1. If you order it you eat it.  #2. Nothing sweet if you don't eat something of substance first.  Riley ate her macaroni & cheese like she was starving but the truth is she wanted to go back to play with the toys in the gift-shop!
Did I mention that she is again wearing her Princess Dress?  She is being complimented and one lady asks her name and she very seriously says, "I AM SNOW WHITE TODAY, not Riley!"  Too cute.  Larry and Julie are going to have to get her into acting classes soon!  She is so good it's strangely odd, she throws herself into a character!  Amazing...just amazing!  

We ended the day with some birthday shopping for her Dad.  His birthday falls on New Years Eve and I'm sure that'll be a post as well here on the blog!  The truth about my blog is it reminds me of special moments.  I don't want to forget a moment of fun I've had with the kids or granddaughters or anyone else special to me! The fact that my posts are usually a day or two behind...oh well!  I'm religious at blogging them just not posting them for you all to see until I've added my pictures and links! is my open letter to Riley:
go to for this awesome dandelion notepad!

P.S.  I found a great idea for us to do when you spend the night again! It's a way to write down and remember all the things you loved this past year!  Here's a sneak peak at it and where I found it online! shared this on her blog! 

What fun we will have listing all the things you learned and all the things you look forward to this year!  

Sweet Dreams Riley Claire!  Love Meme

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