Archive for the ‘A Day in the Life’ Category

Well, I’ve been right here.  But, I have been so, so, so BUSY.  And, I am officially baaaaack!  So sorry to my readers.  It’s been an unplanned hiatus, and a LOT has happened.  Here are the updates!

1.  My baby girl turned 1!

She had a beautiful birthday party, which I had a BLAST planning, preparing, and attending.  I have never had one of my kid’s birthday parties at a “place”.  I’ve always had it at home, and once, we had a party at a local park (it was great, by the way!).  But, I highly recommend having a party hosted.  We did ours at a local kids playplace called The Playroom.  In short, it was fab.

Loving the slide, with a little hand from Grandma


2.  B is now potty trained!

Just shy of the 2 1/2 mark, I decided to potty train my little guy boot camp style.  We had played around with the potty, and had had lots of quality sitting time, but he had never had any success.  I could tell he was ready, however.  He’s smarter than your average toddler, and he’s also got a big brother to keep up with.  Plus, when he was pooping in his diaper, he would leave the room, and go somewhere quiet.  If I snuck up on him, he would ask me politely to “go away”, and with a swift, dismissive wave, he would usher me out.   So, on a Monday afternoon, I just put the little guy in underwear.  He peed in his underwear all afternoon, and most of the next day.  But, by bedtime on Day 2, he was peeing in the potty every 2 minutes.  He was positively HOOKED.  And, I can’t believe I’m saying this, and don’t hate me, but he’s never had an accident.  Don’t get too jealous.  See, I deserve this.  Potty training my oldest boy took me nearly a year, and shortened my life by at least that much.

3.  I am now working out in the mornings!

It seems crazy, I know.  But, it is actually working for me.  Knock on wood, or my granite counter top, because it’s closest.  When I get up early to workout, I don’t have to a) drag the kids with me, b) worry about if they have runny noses and should really be infecting other kids at Kids Klub, c) deal with K crying the whole time, and only being able to work out for 20 minutes, d) pack snacks and drinks like we’re going on safari.  Plus, sometimes I actually get home, and can have a first sip of coffee before anyone comes downstairs and needs a hug, bowl of cereal, glass of milk, or their nose wiped.  Ahhh, the simple joys.

4.  Did you know Christmas is less than 6 WEEKS AWAY?!


How did this happen??  Well, it is what it is, and here are some of my favorite resources for planning a Christmas that is joyful, relaxing, memorable, and with a whole lot less stress.  Pour a cup, and snuggle up for some good reading!

Life as Mom.


Simple Mom.



I’m an Organizing Junkie.


Organized Home.


So, what is new with you?!


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Another of my favorite pictures from Disneyland.  Fountains are fascinating, no matter where they are.  Here is proof.

They could have spent hours watching the “loud fountain”, as my two-year old called it.  And, yes, there was a “quiet fountain”, which of course, was smaller.  I love how he chooses to describe things.  I mean, any old toddler can tell you that it is tall and big, but to choose to describe it as loud. I absolutely love that.  Kisses to my boys.  And, to happy memories.

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Ahhh, the First Trip to Disneyland.  It is an event.  It was more than an event in our house, it was an adventure.  We rented a minivan so that my Father-in-Law and Mother-in-Law could drive with us.  This was such a great idea!  One car makes things much more simple.  And, the cost of the rental wasn’t much more than we would have spent filling up a second car with gas, anyway.

Here was my view for 7 1/2 hours (9 hours on the way drive down):

At least I got out of driving.

We were lucky enough to stay at the Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel and Spa.  The kids had a blast playing in the pool while the grownups packed up the hotel room on our last day.

The pool area is beautiful at this hotel.  We could have spent the whole day there.  In fact, next time, I’m planning it that way.

We had a grand time.  Everyone enjoyed it, and if you asked my kids what their favorite ride was?  It would be a toss-up between the “Bullet Train” aka, the Monorail, the Disneyland Railroad, and the Astro Orbitor.  Really?  We go all the way to Disneyland, where they have the most imaginative, technologically advanced, creative, and sensory-blowing rides, and my kids liked the Railroad (can find one almost anywhere), the Monorail (really just transportation within the park) and the Astro Orbitor, barely  more than a carnival ride.

But, they had fun.  And, it was their trip.  My favorites are Space Mountain, and Soarin’ Over California (in Disney California Adventure).

One of my favorite pictures of the trip:

We got back, and it was all about getting back into the swing of Kindergarten, unpacking, cleaning, and hugging and snuggling with the baby girl.  I missed her immensely, but she didn’t seem to skip a beat when she saw me for the first time after 4 nights.  We picked up right where we left off. What a sweet girl.

And, yesterday was my birthday.  I hung on to 35 as long as I could, but as of yesterday, I had to officially let it go.  I’ve never been the type to lie about my age, or really even worry about it.  But, then, I was only 35.  Being 36 feels older.

It was a day, like any other, but was topped off with a relaxing dinner out, just my husband and I.  I absolutely cherish those dinners.  I don’t have to decide what to cook, I don’t have to clean, and I can sip my wine without being interrupted (and interrupted some more).  The food was delicious, and the company was divine.  What a fabulous way to welcome 36.  Maybe I have nothing to worry about, after all.

So, that’s why I’ve been absent for so long (almost two weeks, gasp!).  I’m back.  Stay tuned, life continues.  Missed you all!

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My husband is out of town.  I can say this because by the time you read this, he will be back.  He has also been uber-busy at work lately.  He generally works a lot, but the last couple of weeks have been exceptionally crazy.  So, it didn’t surprise me at all when last night, at about 10 o’clock, he says casually, “Hey, did I tell you I’m going to Vegas tomorrow?”.

Um, nope.  No, you didn’t.  He’s not so much into the details sometimes.

At least this is only a one night trip.  Not at all like the time I found out he was going to Brussels, Belgium because of some flight times I saw scribbled on the back of a grocery receipt he left sitting next to the laptop on the kitchen counter.  I know, I know, his communication skills are positively astounding.  In the end, his trip got cancelled anyway.  But, I’m getting a little off topic.

It just so happens that I had already made plans with some girlfriends to go out tonight.  I planned it carefully, so that the baby would already be asleep, and the boys would be fed, and in their jammies.

So, now I’m faced with a dilemma.  I could a) scrap my plans for a Girls Night Out (which honestly only happens every six months or so for me.  I know, I know, I need to work on that), or b) call my Mother-in-Law.  I do have a couple babysitters that I use, but now that school is in, they are busy with sports, boyfriends, part-time jobs, and oh, yes, school.

I decided it was important enough to me to give her a call, last-minute.  Turns out she was available and happy to do it.  I am a lucky woman.  Side note:  She also watched the kids one other time this week, and has plans to help me out twice next week.  Am I taking advantage? I hope not. But, possibly a little.

Not everyone has a great relationship with their Mother-in-Law, but after 14 years of marriage, here are a few secrets I will share with you about your Mother-in-Law:

1.  She really does want to help.

So, let her.  Let her hold the baby.  Let  her do a load of laundry.  Let her take the kids to the park.  She wants to do it, and it’s really okay.  Really.

2.  She has the best of intentions.

Yes, she may feed the baby at the wrong time.  Or not warm up the bottle enough.  She might even (gasp!) stop for an ice cream treat before dinner. She is not you.  She will not do things exactly as you do.  But, if you give her instructions, she’ll do her best.  She doesn’t intentionally sabotage your children’s sleep schedule.  She’s finding her way in this whole Grandmother thing, just like you’re finding out who you are as a Mom.  And, she’s waited her whole life to be a Grandmother, so cut her a little slack.  Even if it’s a really, really small amount of slack.

3.  She loves her son and her grandchildren.  But, she loves you, too.

She loves you in a different way, and that love may change and grow over the years.  But, she loves you in a way that says “thank you for sharing your life with my son, and for letting me be a part of my grandchildren’s lives, too”.

4.  She appreciates a Thank You.

It’s easy to take anyone for granted.  I think it’s especially easy to take your Mother-in-Law for granted.  So, remember to appreciate the good things she does.  Even if it’s sandwiched in between things that frustrate you.  She’s a good person.  See Numbers 1 and 2, above.

5.  She has more life experience than you.

This one might be hard to swallow for some, especially if your Mother-in-Law is one who is constantly offering up advice, or insinuating that her way is better.  But, it is true.  She’s been married longer, and even though her children aren’t little any more, she’s been a Mom longer, too.  So, listen to her advice, and allow it to sink in a little.  No one says you have to follow it.  But, you never know what you might learn if you’re open to it.

I mean, maybe she really does have a terrific chicken recipe that’s easy and delicious (and if your husband likes it, you can just wink and say, “I know, yum, right?! It’s just a new recipe I’ve been wanting to try”). Or you can give her credit, if you’re feeling generous.  Men usually don’t care too much about that kind of thing anyway.  Either way, it’s a win-win.  Or, if you’re Michael Scott, a win-win-win.

6.  She knows you hold the cards.  And, she appreciates that you put up with her son.

It’s true.  You have a lot of power in this relationship.  And, he is the boy she raised: the good, and all.the.faults.  See paragraph 3, above.

Anyone else want to chime in?? Come on, put me in my place. 🙂

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Thursday, September 15th, 2011 as told in 12 photos.

6:30ish to 7am:  Boys wake up.  I force my eyes open.

7am:  Breakfast of banana bread with cream cheese, fruit, and milk.

8am: Teeth Brushing antics

9am:  Time to wake the baby so we can take CW to Kindergarten.  Poor thing!

10am:  A little quality time with the Potty Seat

11am:  Following Big Brother now that we’re mobile!

12pm: B Dog gets some quality time alone with the toys.  No big brother to annoy him share with.

1pm:  Nap time.  Shoes and truck safely stowed.  Together.

2pm:  While little siblings sleep, play time for the Big Brother, CW.

4pm:  Backyard water play.  Summer lives on for a few more days.

6pm:  Dinner for the boys: macaroni and cheese (K has already eaten she’ll be asleep shortly).  I cook the broccoli with the pasta.  Time saver.  I rock.

7pm:  We have just entered the Lego phase in our house.  I already have a love/hate relationship with them.

8pm:  A little Thomas the Tank Engine before bed.  See, I can be a Fun Mom.  Note the sleepy eyes and big belly.  Love that.

8:30pm  Bed time for the boys.  The baby has been in bed already for approximately 2 hours.  Aren’t I lucky?  Sweet dreams, babies.  I love you.

For more Ordinary Day posts, check out Baby Rabies.

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Well, it’s official, we have a crawler in our house!   I was beginning to wonder if it would actually happen.  Both the boys crawled when they were 8 months old.  My little K bug is 10 and a half months old.  But, she finally decided she’s spoiled me long enough by remaining stationary.  She is now on the move.  Look out, world!

Here are some of her first moves.  Note that it is my keys she finds so desirable in the video.  Is this a sign of things to come?

I think we’ll be installing (re-installing) the gate at the top of the stairs sooner rather than later!

When did your babies learn to crawl?  Did they crawl before they walked?

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A Mom’s Wish

The last couple of weeks have been especially hard around our house.  Actually, they’ve been hard on me.  I’m not so sure the boys have taken much notice.

So, as a manner of therapy for me, here is a wish list I would like to hand to my boys (the baby girl is off the hook for now, as she is the only one not giving me attitude lately).

If only they could read.  Or follow directions.  Here goes.

Boys, please:

  1. Get up quietly and leave me alone until 7am.  Better yet, since this is a wish list, make that 7:30am.  It’s really not asking for too much.
  2. Let me sleep all night.  I do not want to be bothered at 3am with runny noses, and a need for a hug.  That is what daylight is for.  Did you know your baby sister hasn’t bothered me in the middle of the night for months now?  You could learn something from her.
  3. Please put your toys away when you’re done playing with them.  Leaving the downstairs looking like Katrina is no longer cool.
  4. Listen to each other respectfully.  Grabbing, yelling, hitting, and pushing only work in bar fights.
  5. When I read you a story, kiss you goodnight, and tuck you in, go to sleep.  This new routine of getting up to go to the bathroom, get a drink of water, climbing on the bunk bed and traipsing down the stairs to flash a silly grin has added 10 gray hairs to my head and shortened my life by approximately 2.3 hours.
  6. When you’re sitting at the table for a meal (that I lovingly prepared, ensuring it is healthy and nutritious), finish your food before getting down.  And, while you’re at it, ask permission to be excused, take your dishes to the counter, and wipe your mouth and hands before leaving the kitchen.  Not everyone appreciates the vibrant color of grape jelly against the muted color of the sofa as much as you do.
  7. When I ask you to get in the car, I do not mean climb in the front seat, readjust the rear-view mirror, turn on the defroster, and throw the garage door opener on the floor.  Do I unknowingly speak in foreign tongues?
  8. Please leave cabinet doors closed.  Tampons are not toys, and yes, when you open them, they all look the same inside.
I think that’s all for now.

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