Tuesday, September 28, 2010

secrets, secrets, they are fun- unless you need to bribe your kids...

So my darling hubby and I just booked a one week surprise trip to Disney World for our kids. We are so excited to spend some time near the holidays enjoying Mickey and the gang. We are a family who love Disney and usually visit the mouse every October. With Craig's job situation, we postponed our October trip and told the kids that 2010 was a Disney-free year. The kids were sad, but didn't know our secret.

Wouldn't you know that the kids have all been total stinkers today- the day we book the big trip? And I can't even threaten to not take them to Disney because they don't know we're going.

What kind of parent are you? I'm totally a threatener! I make my little darlings earn (or think that they are earning) every trip. Does this make them grateful? Not at all! But it makes me feel better... :)

Monday, September 27, 2010


Being a stay at home mom, there are several different types of days that make up my life. Some days, I do, literally, stay at home and cook, clean, organize, do laundry (though to be honest, my hubby does most of the laundry because I suck at laundry- and not even on purpose like how I suck at painting). Then there are the days that I spend shuttling around running errands- grocery store, Target, new school shoes, Costco- it is super exciting. There are also the days when I volunteer at the school library, lunchroom, health screenings, kindergarten registration, tutoring, or writers workshop. Today was a totally different kind of day.

I don't know if I've written how lucky I am to have made an amazing group of friends in the six years we've lived in the bubble. Really- you couldn't have conjured up this group of women from a spell to make more fun, caring, amazing friends. These gals get me- the real me, not the me that shoves everything into the closet right before you come into my house.

Together, my friends and I created Monday-funday. Last year while Craig was still between opportunities, I had a lot of time. So one day, I sent out a group email to my girls to see if anyone wanted to go to the movies while the kids were at school. I'll say it again- we go to the MOVIES while the kids are AT SCHOOL! Monday-funday! It is a little guilty pleasure among my galpals. I love it!!! Today, we went to see You Again which was a perfect girls movie.

And three of us almost stayed for another movie--- LOVE IT!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

And so it goes again...

So, Craig is home again. After six glorious weeks of employment, we're back to where we started. In some ways, the adjustment is even harder this time. I was finally going to have my house to myself as Bones didn't start preschool until yesterday. Instead, once again, I'm never alone. I think it is a harder transition this time because I was so looking forward to just having some time alone in my house to sort, clean, organize, cook, watch tv, just to be... I'm adjusting and praying that this will be a shorter hiatus than the last.

As a result of my recent re-companionship, I emailed my gym, Fitness Together, to have them refund my unused sessions- minus a 15% handling fee. This would result in over$3000 returned to our bank account- even with them keeping the handling fee. Hello mortgage! Much to my surprise, they won't refund my money. I'm pissed- they suggest I just use the sessions. When I joined up, they touted the fact that you can cancel any time, no commitment, etc- but now that it's time to walk the walk- they're running the other way. Now, I have a headache. I don't want to be forced to work out somewhere I don't feel comfortable. And I have a sick feeling in my stomach at the idea of going in there-

What should I do? Keep bitching? Call my attorney friends? Cry? UGH!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Preschool starts tomorrow!!!

I have had Bones with me for the past three weeks while his older siblings enjoyed their days at school. In some ways it has been fun to have a sidekick- in others, I'm ready for some peace and some privacy... I'll post a first day of school picture tomorrow, but until then, here is my absolute favorite back to school ad:

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

First week of school blues...

I forgot how tired my kids are after school these first few weeks. Yesterday, C-Dub and Beanie were verbally and physically beating each other up within ten minutes of getting home. Bones got in on the action with a full body slam and a few choke holds. I yelled and put everyone in time out.

Today, I had them eat a huge snack. I set up the computer with a timer so that everyone could have an equal turn. Bean went first- all was well until the timer went off. Tears and a couple of "it's not fair!" ensued. Then it was C's turn. Within ten minutes of playing Webkins, he punched Bones in the weiner while Bones had him in a choke hold. Everyone went to spend time alone in their rooms so I could make dinner without sounding like a WWF referee.

C just came downstairs to request his own computer so he won't have to share with his siblings. Start saving your cash, sweet boy- technology is expensive!

Time to give the kids a healthy dinner and get them into bath/bed early. These kids are beat!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

First day of school!!!

Today is the first day of school for my two big kids. I have the little guy here for a few more weeks, but it is already so quiet. C-dub and Bean were so excited to get on the bus and start a new year. I can't wait to hear their stories about the first day. Did they make new friends? Did they eat their lunches? How was recess? Are their teachers nice? Can't wait!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Old friends...

So we just had a very old friend over for dinner. He is in town from LA and it was so great to see him. It is amazing to me how ten years can pass but when you sit down to dinner with someone, it is as if it has been a few months at the most. It was refreshing to get an LA perspective that is missing here in the bubble. He and my one true love went toe-to-toe politically which really was interesting- (luckily my OTL doesn't care that I align more with Ray...)

I am not great at keeping in touch with people. It really has never been my forte. Growing up, my friends were those who were present. If someone moved away, there would always be promises of writing letter (this was before the Internet was invented people) but after a letter or two, I would blow it off... My sister, on the other hand, was and is a champion friend. She is the person who remembers birthdays, anniversaries, the day you adopted your dog- seriously everything. She still writes letters to a select group of dear friends. I envy that a bit.

I am a person who can catch up with you in ten minutes and then talk for hours. That is what it was like tonight with Ray. It was so great to see him and get caught up- but it was even more fun to get to know him again- as we are now. One of my favorite things is getting to know people- not necessarily strangers, just people. So it is super fun to get to know an old friend again.

Great to see you, Ray-(and to learn about Cosmo!) Look us up next time you are in the bubble!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Summertime at the compound...

This has been an incredible summer so far. The kids, who are currently running around my kitchen like banshees, have been wonderful. I'm thankful I can throw them outside and do so often! Let them bother the neighbors.

Every summer for as long as I can remember (really for as long as my mom can remember, too) our family joins all of our cousins at the lake. When I was a girl, we left the day school got out and came home the day before school started. We filled our time swimming, sailing, water-skiing, searching for bears, playing Ghost in the graveyard, trying to catch chipmunks, and on and on. The dads always stayed in town, commuting up for the weekends, and the kids were just thrown together with whatever mom was around. It must be a little bit like what living in a commune-- without the underaged marriage and stuff. I listened to, and respected, my mom and my aunt Mamie equally. I never realized the work it took...

When I had my first baby (the first of this new generation), I eagerly anticipated sharing the lake with him- and subsequent children. I imagined a blissful summer where I got brown sitting on the beach reading while watching my kids frolic in the waves with their cousins. Our little Stepford babies would sleep well, play well and listen well. They would share without being asked. They would read for the joy of reading. They wouldn't need any TV or DS to entertain them. They'd be entertained by the organic, idyllic summers of my youth.

Except, you only remember the good stuff...

My mom never got to read on the beach until she got brown. I didn't remember that until this summer.

We arrived July 4th with three kids, a dog and enough crap to keep them entertained for a month. My sister and her family of three boys had already been up for about a week. We all enjoyed a fun-filled holiday weekend and then the dads drove back home for the week.

Most days, we don't get to sit down until about 3. We spend the morning grocery shopping with between three and six kids, or taking six kids to the library, or to the farmers market. We play Star Wars, Harry Potter, Legos, Sorry, Animal upon Animal, Bakugan, Othello, pirates and Operation. We drive the pontoon boat for six kids tubing- two turns each. We break up fights and kiss skinned knees. We make lunch. We clean up from all of the above activities. We put all of the kids into their individual rooms from 1-3 for quiet time. We put them back into their rooms a minimum of three times in this two hour period. We split a beer... rinse, repeat, add dinner and bedtime to the routine

My sister, mother and I have been pretty successfully parenting six kids together this summer. Sometimes it is easier when the dads aren't there- we let a lot go and let the kids work a lot of it out on their own. We have mastered being sister-wives without the icky sharing of a husband. Until next summer when they are older and like different stuff--- then we'll reinvent the wheel yet again!

My family is home for a five day respite, and then we're heading back up on Friday for the final weeks of summer. Maybe we'll get the four-year old up on waterskis- time will tell!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

busting my ass...

I have been working out and counting calories faithfully since my birthday last month. I'm happy to report that I've lost eight pounds so far. I'm happy about that, but I'm pretty pissed at my hubby- again.

He decided, on a whim, to start running on our treadmill about two months ago. I have been working out at least three times a week with a trainer since January and not much has happened. DH starts running and drops 20 pounds. Seriously??? It's so unfair!

To top off my annoyance, he now weighs less than I do. ugh... that is just wrong. So, I can't be happy that I'm finally starting to drop weight because now I feel just gross that I weigh more than my husband who is 6 feet tall. Have I mentioned that I am 5'5"? It is disheartening that I've been working so hard, for so long, and he's dropping weight without hardly any effort.

sigh... back to the treadmill or maybe to call the lipo doctor...

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The post I wasn't going to publish...

I wrote this on my birthday in April-- just getting up the guts to publish it today...

I know what I've weighed at every significant point in my life. High school graduation- 132 College graduation- 161 Starting Teaching- 154 Marriage Proposal- 174 Wedding Day- 148 First Pregnancy -161 Second Pregnancy- 181 Third Pregnancy -194 After last baby- 211 Craig gets laid off- 191 Today on my 37th birthday-219

SERIOUSLY?????? 219 UGH- I'm grossed out just thinking about it-- So here I am, starting on my weightloss journey. Again...

I've been working with a trainer at Fitness Together, a studio here in the bubble. They rotate you through various trainers which is really cool because everyone has a different style. I started working out there in the fall but wasn't taking it seriously at all. I hardly was showing up and when I was, it was kindof a joke. I'd follow up a training session with a nice big Starbucks and a bagel or scone. (totally un-doing all the work I had put in).

I'm recommitting- I've worked out every day this week. I'm trying to make better food choices. I'm not drinking too much- mostly...

So I am thinking that if I commit to writing about this once a week, then I will feel accountable to someone other than myself---

Here's to it seeing less of me next week!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Spring Break madness

This year for spring break, we went to St. Martin with two other families. It was a magical and fun trip. From using passports for the first time to sailing on a pirate ship with Flat Stanley, the kids and the adults had an amazing time. Please excuse my straight-out-of-the-camera pictures/videos as I'm learining PhotoShop very slowly!


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

All a-Twitter...

Twitter baffles me. I think it is cool and follow some really funny and interesting people, but I am astonished at who follows my Tweets. I'm really not that interesting...

I have 18 followers on Twitter-- Holla! (insert fist-pump here)
Here is the breakdown of my followers:
5 mommy bloggers or people related to said bloggers
8 friends
5 random people I've never heard of- two authors, two health gurus, and one young lady named SaharaXOXO

I think it is hilarious that SaharaXOXO decided to follow me. And she's not the first! How did she even find me? Does she think from my profile picture that I look like I'd be up for some fun? Has she read my recent Tweets about kids pooping on playdates and going to bed early? Do you think she's missing something in her life? It just cracks me up!

Thank you Sahara XOXO for making me laugh on a night when everyone else in the house is hysterically crying because they lost the privelage of watching Charley Brown's Valentines Day movie. (I told them to play nicely for 40 minutes- no fighting, no crying and we would have a surprise. Twenty minutes later, everyone was in bed. Good times, good times!)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Glorious snow!!!

Today is the most beautiful day we have had in a long time. It is a balmy 25 degrees, there are three feet of snow on the ground and it is sunny. Everything is glistening, fresh and beautiful. Since it is such a nice day, I dragged my three offspring and my husband outside to play.

When we first went out, it was just me and my little guy. He decided we were going on a nature hike to look for tracks. We traipsed through the feet of snow around our whole cul-de-sac looking at tracks. Any mark in the snow is a track when you are four and he was so creative. We saw panda tracks, lion tracks, polar bear tracks and bird tracks! All in my little suburb in NE Ohio! I just followed behind him wishing I had my new flip video camera because it was so fun and cute.

After we were about 2/3 of the way around our trek, CDub came out. He promptly climbed onto the mountain of snow left by the plow and said "I'm the king of the world" complete with Titanic hand motions. DH looked at me--"Has he seen Titanic?" "No!" "where did he learn this?" "School? The Bus? who knows? It is pretty cute, though!" "Yeah..." and then he decided to pelt CDub with a snowball to show him who is really king of this world!

Finally Bean decided to join us. She had been experiencing high levels of drama today as she woke up at 6:15-- ON A SATURDAY!!! We have found that if we just ignore the hysteria, it stops. So we went about our business and just kept playing. She got her act together and we made a tunnel through the plow mountain, we made snow angels and attempted a snowman, but the snow was just too fluffy! There was a bit of crying because her snow angel wasn't perfect. She seemed to get over it quickly, though, and kept playing!

The kids are all snuggled into their beds now after a warm mac-and-cheese lunch and mom is ready for a nap... and to go play more this afternoon!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Longest year of my life

So, one year ago today- give or take a week- my husband was laid off from his job. At first, it was a fun idea- we did lunches together, spent more time as a family than I ever thought possible, took a few extra family vacations and really enjoyed our time together. Spring became summer and he was still here. I gained twenty pounds because everyday seemed like a Saturday. Not only was he here, he wasn't really looking for work. In the fall, he promised to either start his company or start looking for work. He didn't do either. I have fought to keep it together as we slowly become roommates. He is always here. It would be one thing if he participated in the daily mom-shit that I have to do. I can count on one hand the number of times he has gone to the store or made dinner. He constantly yells at the kids because they aren't his perfect idea of what kids should be. There are days I can't stand the sight of him because he.is.always.here. It is like when you have a new baby and someone is always touching you. Some days, you just can't stand to be touched by one more person.

I don't know what to do. Today I feel like I am circling the drain as I hear him yelling at our four-year-old because he squirted toothpaste on the counter. He wasn't around to see the other two do the exact same things when they were four and, frankly, I liked it better.

The thing that worries me the most is that he will never look for a job and will always be here. Forty is WAY too young to retire. There is no way I will last for 40 more years of marriage if he doesn't get a job soon. I really feel like our marriage is dying a slow death every day he is home. I find this so depressing that I start to shut down. The only thing that keeps me from completely shutting down and/or leaving is our kids. And that I really do love my husband- very much- I just don't like him right now. I kind of wish someone read this blog so I could get some feedback... So unsure of what to do...