Friday, December 26, 2008

8 minutes to locate snow clothes
23 minutes to wrestle children into snow clothes
2 minutes to pose for pictures
3 minutes for E to stand frozen in snow bank
4 minutes for E to attempt to escape gloves
1 minute for E to realize it's warmer inside
30 minutes for G-bean to play in winter wonderland and end up at neighbors for hot chocolate
90 minutes of shoveling for Dad to wish Santa brought a snow blower
**building an indoor snowman and making apple juice slushies with rosy cheeked E


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Naughty or Nice

Time for the yearly check in with the man in the big red suit. This year, G-bean fearlessly marched up to Santa and placed her order. E on the other hand eyed him like a wolf in sheep's clothing. She wasn't fooled by the synthetic beard or covert ear piece revealing each child's Christmas wish. Instead she took her complimentary candy cane and stood watch in case G-bean needed back up.

It's a yearly tradition to visit Santa and light R's parents neighborhood Christmas tree. It snowed just in time for the evening's festivities. Out came the snow suits and pink cheeks. It was truly magical. E finally understood what the snow craze is all about. She kept saying "I bite snow." We have yet to indoctrinate her on the various shades and quality...Fortunately she was working with a fresh batch. As for G-bean, she could not have been more content with her cousin Stella, glazed donut & hot cocoa.

By the way, the random little boy in our family picture kept pelting me with snowballs. I guess I'm an easy target these days--big, slow moving, hard to miss. Doesn't he know not to mess with a Mama bear, especially when she's with her young.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Rodeo Queens

Thanksgiving break brought free days, good weather & little people with energy to burn. With my fellow belly in crime, Joni and I packed up the girls and headed to Maja's house. We spent a magical morning feeding animals (both 2 & 4 legged), giving riding lessons, and leading horses around in circles. The girls were in heaven as were the horses with their excessive treats. Adorned with rhinestone hats & cowboy boots, the girls transformed into true rodeo queens. Jack supervised the whole operation as the proud watch dog and master of ceremonies. As we rode off into the sunset at the end of the day, everyone was tired, happy and stinky. Mission accomplished!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Don't Look Down

"Whatever you do, don't look down." Advice usually spoken to a person standing on a precipice. Well people, I am teetering on the edge of change (aka baby number 3). And those words of wisdom have yet to help me. For the last 7 months, I have done exactly that... not looked down. I focused on more pressing matters and paid little attention to my ever changing figure. Mad cravings and cankles were given little thought...perhaps a weird side effect from bad Indian food.

Problem #1: All the realizations that a person would normally have experienced in the beginning of pregnancy are hitting me NOW. So with less than 3 months to go, I feel like I just had a date with my EPT and must prepare for the aftermath. All I can say is holy bananas! What am I going to do with 3 little people?! My sanity is already in question. The midgets will have me surrounded! Our man on man defense is shot. What do I do when they all decide to mutiny and run in different directions? Are kid leashes still kosher? What do you do with a newborn? I think I have blocked it all out for a reason. We've come so far with the first 2 kiddos. We can go to the movies and talk politics. Who pressed the reset button?

Problem #2: I am having delusions! First, I do not recognize my own body. I feel like a science project in paneled pants. I could charge admission. When reflecting on my pre-baby bod, I fancy myself to have looked quite a bit like Heidi Klum. Please say nothing! Remember, I'm delusional. Now I feel like someone photo-shopped my head onto Roseanne Barr's fuller figure. To top it off, I fantasize about working out. Right now just putting on socks is exhausting. My poor lungs are out of real estate and I am constantly out of breath. I sound like an obscene caller all the time. I dream of doing sit ups and laying on my stomach. I haven't been able to locate my ribs for quite some time. I long for rigorous bike rides and long runs. HA- where were those desires 7 months ago? When I am not cursing at skinny runners, I am marveling at their agility due to the fact I no longer walk, I lumber.

Solution to Problems 1 & 2: Accept my reality and embrace the look of a wild-eyed mad woman. I hear that comes with 3 kids. I think I would have preferred a complimentary toaster for all my trouble, but what are you going to do.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Halloween Spooktacular

The best day of the year and I practically missed it. In the hustle and bustle of life, I did not devote the proper time & creativity required by this spooktacular holiday. The kids were without costumes, the mom had drained the candy supply, the dad was preoccupied packing boxes and all was not in order for Halloween. My last ditch efforts at a costume for G-bean had failed miserably. Some even made her cry. She was close to cancelling Halloween all together and was in jeopardy of never smiling again. Okay so that last part was a little dramatic, but she did threaten not to trick or treat. GASP! Fortunately, E was oblivious to the drama and had lower expectations of this haunting occasion. Her only demand..."More candy mom." Alas, had I ruined the best day of the year for my children?!

No! By some miracle, it all came together. We even managed to pull off our annual chili party the night of Halloween. We had a house full of family dressed as all walks of life eating off of paper goods and dining atop cardboard boxes. The dry ice was floating and the root beer was flowing. E was double-fisted all night with long neck root beer. I daresay that little lady bug was seeing spots and could not fly a straight line by the end of the night. As for our Rapunzel, she made a full recovery. The only thing that could have topped her delight was if Prince Charming were to show up and ask her to let her hair down. And then there's the parents, don't they looked haggard?! They were. We did not dress up...SHOCKER! If anything, we were dressed as survivors. Hopefully next year we will get our act together, so that we won't get voted off the island.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Details, Details

Some people say that it's all in the details. Or is it?

In anticipation of our move, we have abandoned conventional living. We have decided to live in a maze of cardboard boxes. We forage for our needs of matching shoes & a clean towels and forgo our wants of furniture to sit on & home cooked meals. The girls have deserted their toys and created their own little shanty town out of storage containers. We are up to our eyeballs in STUFF! It's a danger zone. I have toyed with the idea of handing out avalanche beacons 'just in case'.

I do have a point. It is this. In an effort to be a more organized version of myself, I have tried to pay the utmost attention to every detail. No clutter or excess will enter our next abode. I have sorted, cleaned, mended, and thrown out years of material baggage (aka crap). For heaven sakes, I sterilized the bath toys. Alas, some details have escaped me. I tucked G-bean in the other night with her shoes on. I somehow overlooked the fact that E was playing Picasso with a sharpie on her white dresser. I discovered all to late that G-bean had unwound a full roll of toilet paper needing a telescope for her highseas adventure in a box. I found the phone in the fridge. I have thrown the toothbrush in the sink and spit in the drawer. And it was brought to my attention that 5 out of 7 days this week, my underwear has been on inside out or backwards. Hmmmmm...

Is it really all in the details or just the important survival.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Monday, October 20, 2008

What's up Doc?

I recently went to my monthly cattle call weigh in. (Always a character building exercise). All the clanging and banging of the scale revealed that the month of September had not been kind. (My clothes strained seams could have told you that.) I proceeded to rationalize to the nurse. 'I have on heavy flip flops, suffer from dense bones and have the weight of the world on my shoulders.' She just rolled her eyes and herded me into my room.

Upon discussing this matter with the good ol' doctor, she gave me this diagnosis. First, I should stop spreading butter like frosting because my milkshake was going to bring all the boys to the yard. I remarked that such a weight gain was probably typical for a 3rd baby...WRONG! She shot me down. Come on Doc...curvy damsel in distress make something up. Tell me women with an abnormal amount of freckles gain more with the 3rd baby. ANYTHING! Then she had the nerve to tell me that if I wanted to get back on track, I should only gain 1 lb. next month. I teared up and blurted out "But it's Halloween!" To which she responded, "Eat celery". AHHHHHHHH!

The plot thickens (just like everything else around here). During my next grocery store trip, I made an effort to spend some extra time in the produce section. Celery in cart, we headed towards the checkout. G-bean asked if we could pick out some Halloween candy. Once again being upfront, I told her that if we bought it too soon Mommy would blackout and eat it all. Unphased & answer accepted, she moved on. As the cashier rang up my last items, she gestured towards the "super buy" of the day. Before she could even say the words, I squeaked "1 bag- the one with chocolate bars". I buckled! G-bean looked at me confused, "Didn't you just say...". Oh kid, this is one of those times where you do as I say and not as I do.

The Stork Won't Fly

While driving the other day, G-bean decided to ask R a serious question. "Dad how do babies come out?" she inquired. GULP, nervous chuckle, beads of sweat..."That is a great question for your mother." Not one of R's most shining 'Father knows best' moments. All things girly and messy make him squirm. Good luck R, you've got 2 daughters!

Upon arriving home, they both sat me down and presented me with the loaded question. G-bean seeking an honest answer and R praying for someone else to handle this delicate subject. When I asked her what she thought, she guessed the baby's best exit options were through the mouth or belly button. Here was my chance. My opportunity to open the lines of communication so that my kids would know they could always get a straightforward answer from their parents. HA! I gave her a very honest response (certain details excluded). When finished with what I felt was articulate and appropriate information, G-bean & R looked horrified. I think they liked G-bean's options better. Maybe next time I will stick with the stork.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Cravings or Ravings?

You know you are in bad shape when Frito's & Cranberry juice sound better than being stranded on a tropical island with a masseuse! Oh the things that go bump in the night in this belly o' mine. This week I have already polished off 1 jar of pimento stuffed green olives, half a jar of pickles, guzzled 2 gallons of milk, and downed my weight in sourdough toast. People- are these legitimate cravings or mad woman ravings? My world is nothing but salt & sour. Baking has lost it's luster while opening brine-filled jars brings such delight! Who am I? Who has taken over my body? I feel like one of those capsules where you just add water until they balloon up into some odd shaped creature. It's not all weird science. I do find myself giggling at the absurdity of my breakfast. All I can handle is Special K which boldly promises to take inches off my waistline. Ironically mine seems to grow a few inches each week. I have thought about complaining to Kellogg's just for my amusement.

I finally surrendered to this force of nature called pregnancy. I pulled out the paneled pants. YUP! I laughed, scoffed & dismissed the idea of those spandex contraptions. I told R it was way too soon. "I am still a svelte woman," I claimed. Alas when I tried them on for entertainments sake, let's just say I wasn't so amused. It was then that R admitted how wonderful they looked. Wonderful?! Upon further investigation, he admitted that I haven't looked comfortable in my jeans for a few weeks now. In not so many words, the man told me I had been walking around looking like a stuffed sausage coming out of its casing. Hmmmm...I guess panels aren't that bad.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

What Is Stronger Than Duct Tape?

Alas, E's will is stronger than duct tape. She escaped!! Those quiet moments I innocently assumed E was napping--E was actually freeing herself from her "super star belt". (Yes, we gave it a name to jazz it up.) She is our little naked Houdini aka "Nude-ini". It all makes sense now. I wondered why E would hold so still for diaper changes and extra strength tape applications. It turns out, she was patiently biding her time and strategizing her exit. And exit she did! When I peeked in to check on her, there IT was... World's soggiest diaper sitting in the middle of the room with shreds of silver dangling from it's remains. It had been lobbed over the side of her crib and left for pick up. And there SHE was...peacefully asleep in the buff! Back to the onesies we go!

*Do you see that devilish glint in her eye?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Three Things

Three things:

-First, today we found out that we are having a baby boy. Crazy- I know! Up until this point, R thought he was destined to live in the land of pink & princesses. As the ultrasound would have it, there will be one more prince charming in our kingdom. G-bean is now excited. At first she was flustered, because she wanted a baby girl named Carol. I don't know where she gets this stuff.

-Second, G-bean lost her first tooth. The only problem is that she has no recollection as to where it is or when it happened. We think she might have swallowed it. So if it takes 7 years for gum to digest, how long does it take for a tooth? The tooth fairy definitely has her work cut out for her.

-Third, I am going to admit to something quite silly. I duct taped my daughter into her diaper today. According to other moms, it is not child abuse. E does not like to wear pants...ever. When left to her own devices, she will strip & run. Such behavior is not kosher at nap time. So today, I pulled out that handy multi-purpose tape and strapped her in. SUCCESS! I have yet to hear a peep from her room. I haven't planned her exit strategy from the diaper, but I'm sure it will make for a great story.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Family Fumble

Who doesn't love Fall? Who doesn't look forward to the weekend? The wife of a football fan that's who!! While I love the season, it can sometimes be overshadowed by a large blue "Y". Although R attempts to engage in family fun, when game time rolls around...let's just say that 'the game is on, but nobody is home'. He's a warm body to us and a hot-blooded fan to his team.

The second Saturday of football season began like any other weekend until early afternoon when the headphones came out. R started to putter about the house attempting to be super helpful which only meant one thing...tip off was in an hour. He did what few men have done before...saw a need and took care of it without prompting. He voluntarily did the dishes!

When I inquired about the need for headgear, I was informed that the pre-game show was just as important. It's foreplay for football fans. Since when have men been so concerned about foreplay? As if that wasn't enough stimulation, the end of the game rolled right into the post game show. Television off, headphones back on. I quickly learned that was also a priority for an uber fan. It's like the cuddling afterward. Once again, since when do men like to cuddle after? Oh the things I will never understand. Three sisters and a brother that loved science did not prepare me for this.

So while R watched big boys pass the pigskin and listened to them replay their moments of glory, the girls napped and I found refuge painting furniture in the garage. Fumes or football, pick your poison!

Book Smarts

First & foremost, I love my family. That being said, sometimes a lady needs a break. For those of you who can relate, read on...the rest of you just better go back to your familial bliss.

Tonight I dropped my family off and ran away. Okay that sounds a little dramatic. I did not pack a suitcase and hide in a tree house. Let's just say I went to return a video and took the LONG way home. As a child, my grandmother taught me that the best place to escape was a good book. Therefore, I found myself wandering aimlessly around Barnes & Noble. The smell of Starbucks wafting through rows & rows of uncracked books and intellectuals mingling over lattes was heaven. No one grabbing my face or pulling at my hemline demanding my undivided attention. I could just be. By proximity, I exuded intelligence. For all these bookies knew I was a political genius, rocket scientist, journalist, professor. I had found my people...and best of all, they didn't expect anything from me. For a good hour, I checked out of my life and pretended to be someone with a brain. Rubbing elbows with college students, philosophers, book worms, and random loiterers, I found that I wanted to sink into a recliner and have deep thoughts. I wanted to go back to when my brain was mine...uncluttered & interesting!

As I sipped my steaming Starbucks delight, I wandered without purpose. Almost wishing I had important research to conduct or a term paper to write, I itched to be a student again. I thumbed through heavy volumes that were way beyond my comprehension. I paused for a moment in front of the classics. While paying my respects, I stared off into space. I reveled in the absence of any thoughts or responsibilities, but hoped for brilliance by osmosis. I then passed the home reference section. It was there that smug Martha Stewart posed contently with household cleaning items on the cover of a book thicker than my waistline (which is hard to beat these days!). Believe me, no one enjoys cleaning that much. And any enjoyment I feel comes from the fumes! Can't a girl escape from domestic duties? Hello, I am hiding in a bookstore! Besides Martha if I have time to read your cumbersome book, it means that I have finished pulling out all of my eyelashes and knitted a vest with them.

I digress. Perusing aisles and mentally making lists of interesting books, I realized that I have no excuse. I can't use the "if I only had a brain" line, because this is not the Wizard of Oz. This is my life. I can be a life long learner. I just have to make time for my own stimulus. So how do I do it all? While Martha makes it seem easy, she also has a staff and record. My question is this- in the absence of a hired team and prison smarts, how do you make time for you?

Saturday, August 30, 2008

We survived our first "Football Saturday" of the season. Believe me, R has been counting down the days. His manhood was definitely not in question today. He did yard work, watched football and ate beef. It doesn't get manlier than that. Short of pounding his chest and carrying a club around, the testosterone was flowing. As for the estrogen, the girls and I did our best to steer clear of pigskin central.

Other updates, G-bean had her first trip to the dentist where he gave her a no thumb-sucking mandate. We now tuck her it with a customized frowny face band-aid on her beloved digit. So far, so good. We went on a Mommy & G-bean date to the new 3D movie Fly me to the Moon. G-bean looked like a cross between Elvis Costello & Helen Keller as she blindly grabbed at the air trying to touch the characters in her fashionable specs. It doesn't get much better than that...until G-bean attempts to dress R up in a cowgirl outfit.

E has decided that diapers are slowing her down. It's now a common occurrence to see two bare cheeks go running by. We have had to reinstate the 'onesie' due to our resident streaker. She too must give up her night time comfort...the Binky. It's that or billy bob teeth. I am pretty sure she'll thank me when she's older. She is all about jumping, climbing, giving 'bones', dancing, and following her favorite big sis. She loves that G-bean will sing & entertain her to sleep at night. Plus, she thinks it's pretty awesome that G-bean has taught her how to sit upside down on the couch. The upside down contorting has now carried over to church. She chose to sit that way for a good portion of Sunday's meeting. Whatever keeps the midget still!!

As for the mothership, I am vertical. I am also craving a cupcake. Signing off...

P.S. Check out R in the background of the picture of E painting with pudding. She was slathered from head to toe with pudding and R was totally stressed out.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Head Cases

It has been confirmed. I am living with a bunch of head cases...I am their ring leader. Where to begin? Well, let's just say that August has been the month of head traumas at our house.

It all started a few Saturdays ago on a trip to Costco. Until then, it was such a happy place. Bulk shopping, samples, churros, footie pajamas and a lot of stuff that you don't need but buy anyway. We were loading up when Miss G-bean fell backwards out of our cart and landed on her head. She deserved a gold medal for her dismount. She also earned a one-way ticket to the ER. I am going to let you in on a little secret. The quickest way to get a room and be seen by a doctor is to have your child throw up all over the waiting room, you, and the people around you. Poor G-bean was so out of it. Mom (aka me) was trying to stay calm and with it while holding a bag of frozen corn to her head. A few exams, tests, doctors, CT scan and IV later, we landed ourselves a one night stay in the hospital. As the evening wore on, G-bean perked up and we started to see glimpses of our spunky red head. I think she even thought our unexpected adventure was fun. Nice nurses, stuffed animals, movies, Mom all to yourself, stickers, room service...need I say more. In a 4 year olds eyes that starts to feel like the 4 seasons. To make a long story short, we learned that kids bounce even on their heads. We were lucky. So Miss G-bean is back in action living to tell the tale. She has made a full recovery, but it's definitely tempting to blame any future ill behavior on the fall and not our parenting.

Head case number 2 aka kiddo numero dos, E. We had the pleasure of swimming with friends this week. Water, friends, good conversation, sunshine, kids occupied...and then E decided to pick a fight with a cinder block wall. It didn't necessarily happen that way, but by the way her face looks she definitely lost. Poor E was kicking back some animal crackers, catching some rays, taking in the scene when she dropped her snack. In her attempt to launch a rescue mission, she tipped over in her chair backwards (yep, backwards once again!) and had some face time with a wall. We found out that she also bounces, but scratches easily. She now has a nice raspberry on her forehead, nose, wrist & elbow. I think she is truly rocking the look. It adds to her scrappy nature and street cred. G-bean has even backed down once or twice when they've gone head to head over a toy.

As for the other head cases in our house (Mom & Dad), our symptoms can't be linked to a particular injury. It's just life. Let's just say it's been a wild summer. In fact, we refer to it as the "Summer of Survival". Here's to hoping for a slower paced Fall.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Our YaYa Sisterhood

Meet my YaYa's. There are no traveling pants in our sisterhood. Skirts & dresses are the preferred uniform. I don't know whether G-bean is taming the lion or attempting to feed E to it. It depends on the day.