Monday, May 6, 2013

Change, Challenge and Many Hats

I am taking on a challenge to represent Love in Action.

Yesterday morning at church there were bags of fortune cookies at the end of each row and out of thousands of cookies the ones we got definitely apply to us.  I was actually just thinking about the little girl that I tutor when we opened our cookies - last week was my last tutoring session with her and she has come so far this year but I am also nervous for end of the year testing and how the students will perform etc.  So God gave me the fortune to "Tutor someone for free."  What a great idea!!! I spent a lot of time yesterday thinking about having an after school tutoring/study review session before the MP test and hopefully some kids will have transportation to stay after school as soon as I pick a date.  Which time is running out since I only have 9.5 days left of 2nd grade (6th year teaching down)!!!!!

Neal's fortune was to relieve your spouse of home responsibilities for a night.  (In my mind I gave God a high five when Neal opened it.)  Neal turned to me and said OH you're gonna like this one!!! Not that Neal doesn't let me have girls night out but it definitely helps to have the push to make a plan get out and do it.  We spent the rest of the service holding hands with Neal's arm wrapped around me, connected.  I cherish that hour on Sundays.

When we picked Beckett up from his 3 year old class he also got a fortune cookie and his said to donate 5 toys!  We have been working on that today and boy his might be the most challenging!  Every toy I have held up he has a story about it, who gave it to him and he wants to play with it like it's the first time he's ever used it.  His pile has 1 toy so far - ha.  4 more to go!  Maybe after nap he will feel more in the giving, purging mood :)

The last 3 weeks of April flew by as they always do.  The kids were sick for a good 2 weeks and it was miserable.  We had birthday parties & bachelorette/bachelor parties in DC since I last blogged so we have been busy!  Beckett has been a challenge to get him to eat anything recently also. I have to call fish "chicken" and tomato sauce on pasta is "ketchup".  Emerson is seriously catching up to him in height and weight even though she is starting to gag food up lately (must be a texture thing).  I am hoping they are just going through a phase and that is passes quickly!!

Yesterday's sermon really had me reflecting on kindness and loving others.  I want to start giving more, doing more, sharing more! I feel so blessed to have some people in my life who are truly one in a million.  I am very thankful for one of my friends for bringing us dinner while the kids were sick - it was such a huge help and her grace is amazing.   I am also very thankful for a friend who gets me out of the house and trying new things and restaurants (Balliceaux and Sticky Rice)! With her I am not "just a mom" which is a nice feeling to have! I am so grateful for my 2 sister-in-laws who showed Emerson and I great time in DC with their generosity! Very excited for the upcoming bridal shower and wedding! My sister-in-law's parents babysat Emerson and my mother-in-law babysat Beckett and my mom watched Gracie all so Neal and I could have some fun! We are also very lucky to have the sweetest babysitter who likes to have fun with our kids when she's at our home! I have started leaving her my van on some days and she loves to take them to Kangaroo Jac's and the park! It takes a village....Thank you all.

I have also had a really great experience so far with Beckett's speech evaluation process.  The SPED team in Henrico has been amazing and so helpful to work with.  I know he will be getting great services soon and be totally ready for Kindergarten in two years time.  If you are having any doubts about your child's speech and language don't wait to have it checked!

There will be a lot of change happening in our family's future and it can be scary but I am ready to embrace it and try to stay positive and represent love!

Nothing like a little pit stop on 95 to clean up some baby puke!

Uncle Jason and Emerson!

She's not a fan of sleeping away from home!


Beckett enjoying the beach in April!

Teacher twins!

She was fascinated with my shadow at the dr.'s office.

Playing at Short Pump!

First time going putt putt! The course was about 9 holes too long :)

Silly faces mommy!

Cinco de Mayo!

Swinging at Cole's party!

We had a great time!

Who needs a fork?

It's easier to lift weights with this as my view at the gym ;) 

After our yard sale Beckett got to buy this toy he had been eyeing!  And he gave it a big kiss!

Pointing to balloons flying up in the sky!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

I have kids....

No seriously. I have kids. I typed that sentence today.  Actually I typed, "The kids fight over me constantly and it's horrible." I typed those words to my sister.

And they do!  Believe it or not from 4 pm to 6 pm everyday my kids FIGHT over me! They cry and scream and flail their arms to sit on my lap or hug me or be on me and I don't know what to do.

I don't know what to do.

I feel my heart strings being pulled when I can't give them their individual attention that I know they want and deserve.  However, they also need to learn how to SHARE! (Another reason Neal and I think they need to go to preschool next year.)

But when did I get kids? Last I checked I had a baby and a baby. Not KIDS!?!?!  When did this happen?! Time is just going by too fast and I wish it could slow down for a hot minute.

I adore them so much.  We had a a wonderful 13 days of Spring Break and I enjoyed every minute except for about 45 of them when they were crying in public.

Emerson is growing up so much!  I switched out her winter wardrobe for spring/summer stuff and she is wearing 3T clothes now!!!!!!! 3T! As in a 3 year old toddler.  She is 18 months old. I can't handle the growing.  She is a little parrot and repeats every single sound, word, sentence, syllable and paragraph that we say.  Examples: I am so happy!  I did it! Don't touch it!  The doggie bite you! No No no eat. No no no sleep.  I don't like it. I don't share. My toys. My turn.  You get the picture ;)
She is also turning into a sasssssy pants.  She pushed and pinched another girl at the zoo on Monday and I was mortified!!!! She has never been pinched in her life! Where did she learn this from?  Home girl needs a reality check.  She's been living it pretty easy for the last year and a half!  She does love to hug Beckett (one of her favorite words) but she also loves to haul off and slap him in the head.

Sibling <3

My big boy is just that - so big!  In 5T clothes for the spring and I just put 2 bags together to give away of his 4T stuff (tear, tear). He is SO into mommy right now (which I love.)  I want to be with him all the time and he reciprocates that feeling!  He loves to tell me stories and we draw together and sing together, walk together, talk together. It's so fun seeing their personalities unfold. He is finally getting "jokes".  I love it. We passed a guy riding a lawnmower last week in the car and he busted out laughing for a good 5 minutes because it was the "funniest thing he's ever seen." Gotta love 3 year olds. :)  I am having a really hard time at the thought of sending him to preschool next year because *selfishly* I want him with me all the time!  He has his speech evaluation on Monday...Pray for my strength!

I am very thankful that both kids are sleeping now so I can start my lesson plans and even more thankful that Neal brought home a 6 pack so I could relax and unwind and try to wrap my brain around the fact that I have 2 kids.....

Cute kids ;)
Night all!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Sunshiny Afternoon!

I was SO bummed when I woke up to rain this morning - that meant I could not get my vacuuming done because Gracie would try to shred the vacuum cleaner to bits.  If I put her in another room she barks like crazy.  Sigh.  So we did laundry and got dinner in the crock pot because ain't nobody got time to cook.  Emerson took an early nap because she is teething and cranky.  Beckett did not nap today - the joys of three.

But, I was SO excited when the rain stopped, and the clouds disappeared and the SUN came out!!! Wow was it gorgeous today - it was - dare I say - HOT! Ok maybe I was sweating because I had to roll the trash to the curb.  I put the kids in their rain boots and let them play outside and they had a ball.  Best of all a FIRETRUCK drove down our street and all the firefighters smiled and waved at Beckett.  He then wanted to turn the water hose on and spray everything like a firefighter - my cue to come in.

Now the kids are relaxing, dinner's ready and  I did get to vacuum .... we're just missing Nealy :)

I have been going back and forth so much about working next year it is eating me alive.  I will continue to pray about it and hopefully some clarity will come very soon!

Love this Dolly Parton quote and my 2 reasons for smiling so much each day!  xo

Two peas in a pod

They can get away with running around naked now...


She could have done this all day!


Chicken sausage from Costco with onions, peppers, crushed red pepper flakes, garlic & evoo (lil flour to thicken)  4 hours on low :) 

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

We're going on a bear hunt...

You know that cute book? "We're Going On a Bear Hunt"?  We love that book at our house.  We read it all the time and the kids especially love how the end gets faster and faster and my voice goes up and we act out the scenes.  My favorite page is "WE ARE NEVER GOING ON A BEAR HUNT AGAIN!" Then I fall back out of breath.

That is how I feel about the ENT.  WE ARE NEVER GOING TO THE ENT AGAIN! Whooosh.
(without Daddy)

First let me just tell you guys that I had no freakin clue that both of my kids had ENT appts. today until they called and left a message that they would see us at 1:00. (Thank God they called.) SUPER MOM!!!!!

We went to the grocery store and got gas before the ENT and both kids fell asleep in the van so we just parked at the ENT and I waited for B to wake up because I knew he was going to have to pee.  I was just sitting there praying that he wouldn't pee through his pants before his appt. (*note to self put change of clothes in van.)

So, at 12:40 he woke up saying "I godda go pee!"  I was ready.  I woke Emerson up and we literally ran into the ENT so Beckett could pee. The receptionist greeted us with "Oh look at him running!"  My response "POTTY TRAINING" with the cheesiest smile I could fake.

We waited in the waiting room for 28 minutes while the kids played with every germ infested toy there until we got called back.

Again, Beckett took off running to the back past the nurse and the height/weight station while I am holding Emerson horizontally under one arm, their 2 coats and the diaper bag under the other arm.

We corralled him back and he immediately starts asking for a lollipop - so then the bribery began.  Beckett weighed 38 pounds and Emerson weighed 28 pounds.  Beckett is 3 foot 5 in. and Emmason is 2 foot 7 in. Big kids!!

We went to our room number 6 to wait for the Dr.  I could hear the Dr. on the phone outside of our room at the nurses station and surely he could hear me singing THE BABY ON THE BUS GOES WAA WAA WAA....and me telling Beckett "sit still, don't touch it, no, put it back, not yours, ew yucky, gross, get away from the trashcan" over Emerson's cries because she starts crying when her temperature gets taken.  11 minutes into our wait Beckett yells "I godda go POOOOOP!" which is awesome because the bathroom is in the waiting room.  So he takes off running and I grab the diaper bag and assume Emerson into horizontal running position back to the waiting room.

Now, I love the fact that Beckett is potty trained, but today I wish he was still in pull ups and had taken a big crap in that instead of the 3 of us sitting in the bathroom for TEN minutes while he took his sweet precious time going poop.  He was loudly telling E and I that he wanted his privacy and he wanted to take his shoes off.  I was trying to keep Emerson off the floor and away from the plunger.  The longest ten minutes

I feel like we have been at the dr. forever now at this point but when we finally returned to room 6 approximately 15 minutes and 3 hand washes later whaddya know the doc was waiting for us!

He checked both kid's ears and surprise Emerson cried and surprise Beckett's left tube has fallen out and he's got an infection - yay more antibiotics.

We talked about adenoid removal etc. and I mentioned to him that we are pursuing a speech evaluation for Beckett (no easy task) so he tells me that we can go ahead and take care of his hearing test here, now.

Great!  So we go to another waiting room and are met by another dr. who will do B's hearing test.
This is where it gets really good.  So, the dr. tells me that in order to do B's hearing test I have to hold him on my lap, in a dark quiet room, with the door shut.  She asks me if it would be ok to leave Emerson out there with her while I go into the other room with the door shut and the lights off.  I know I stared blankly at her for atleast 45 seconds before she said "maam?"

Alright, whatever, we are already here let's do this.  I put Emerson in a chair next to the dr.'s desk with goldfish pretzels and juice.  Beckett and I go into the dark room, she shuts the door, and tells me over a microphone to hold him still and be very quiet as not to distract him. Right.

Soon little noises start coming out of speakers and stuffed animals start lighting up around the room while I am trying to hold Mr. Wiggles still.  The lights come on and she opens the door becauseeeeee
Emerson has dumped out all of her snacks onto the floor and we need to clean up the mess........seriously.

After we cleaned up her snack we went BACK into the room for a few more minutes to try and finish.  She ended up turning the lights on and telling me basically we weren't finished but that was as good as it was going to get and she had a pretty good feeling that my "chatty three year old that loves to talk" can hear on both sides.  The ear with the tube still in tact might be a little better.  (I think she just didn't want to babysit Emerson anymore.)

She goes to get me some more speech information and Emerson tries to follow her new friend out of the room and when I pick her up to keep her in the room it's all over.  The face turns red, she stops breathing and huge tears start rolling.  Once she stops to take a breath and let out a wail I have to pick Beckett up with my other arm to keep him in the room.  The dr. comes back and between holding a combined 66 lbs. of screaming teary mess in my arms I have no freaking clue what she said but I nodded took the papers and left.  I don't think she will have children after today.  (She is engaged.)

We stopped by the receptionist - I'm sure I look like a body builder trying to carry my kids and I can't wipe the hair out of my eyes and my cheeks are more than a lot of blush red because I am sweating profusely under my coat after walking through 2 offices - to make 2 more appointments and get our LOLLIPOPS (sugar free) which at this point I am shoving them in their mouths to keep them quiet enough to get their coats and hoods on to head out in the rain.

We are home now.  They are both sleeping. I am eating an entire box of Special K crackers and WE ARE NEVER GOING TO THE ENT AGAIN!!!!!!!! (without Daddy)

Snoozing in the parking lot - this is the bag of goldfish she dumped out because mommy forgot the snack cup :) 

Yay he didn't pee while sleeping!

 She really loved this Elmo toy with influenza on it. 

Beckett telling the other kid in the waiting area that he doesn't like the vegetables on this table.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

This is how all Wednesdays should be!

I love today. Today was perfect. Both of my kids slept in. I finished a book this morning. I took a SHOWER this morning.  

We went to Short Pump to meet Kim and Jack.  We got Starbucks, walked around, played in the play area, walked some more around the fountains, rode the train (Jack had to sit this one out til summer time!) got lunch at Chick Fil A and walked a little more!!!

There is nothing better in the world than best friends and babies and talking and coffee.  Sigh .... Perfect day. Wish I could live it over every day!  

Cleaning while my babies are napping and making dinner for my husband...couldn't be happier <3 Happy Wednesday :) 

Beckett enjoying his lemon pound cake!

Emerson so content playing!

She carried that scone for 2 hours!

Anyone else's kids stick their tongues under the dryer?

Play time!

Riding the train!

All Aboard - look at her smirk!

Hold my hand sister. 

"I belong with you, you belong with me, you're my sweetheart" was playing :) 

Waving at everybody!

Sweetest baby Jack!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Road Trip / 3 Day weekend!

Saturday morning Beckett and I had plans to travel to Fairfax to see one of my best and oldest friends!!!  I woke up to this and giant snowflakes!!! 

This was not going to stop us :) I was so looking forward to and needing to get out of Richmond and spend some time with just B. Luckily the snow turned into light rain and we were on the road at 9 am.  We stopped for gas and snacks before getting on 95 - Beckett was in heaven.  He literally said "This is SO fun!"  in the gas station after picking out teddy grahams and apple juice....too sweet.  2 hours later we made it to Brandy's!  

When we got to her house we hung out and caught up for a bit!  She looks amazing as always and Beckett and Olivia hit it off right away bonding over Justin Bieber Barbies.   We needed to get the kids out and play so we went to hades Chuck E. Cheese.  It was packed and humongous compared to the one here! Beckett of course got stuck in the tunnel slide, Olivia tried to carry him down :)  Then I had to regulate on some crazy kids whose parents were no where to be found.  After using all of our tokens on candy and 2 little toys we headed to Sweet Frog for some yummy froyo.  Brandy is doing the points also so we loaded up the fruit on ours and only used 2 points!!! 

Motion Game!
Racing Car!



After a fun Target run (got some Eater basket stuff!) and Beckett calling the check out man his Grandpa we headed back to Brandy's to feed and bathe the kids!  We got them all situated with a movie and had lots of time to talk and talk and talk.  We probably could have talked for 3 days straight.  Love that we can pick up where we left off and it seems just as easy as it did 14 years ago!  After a bottle of wine and some Channing Tatum replay I headed to check on the kids and fell asleep ;) Sunday morning we just hung out until it was time to go! We will definitely be back very soon! Thank you cute Fernandes family for the hospitality!!!

We stopped by Unc Unc Jason and Aunt Nancy's in Arlington on our way out of Fairfax.  Great to see them as always!!! Their wedding is in June and I can't wait!!!!!  It's going to be spectacular! :) 

Beckett was so tired from his weekend of playing that he was out....the traffic was ridiculously slow on 95 so we had to stop in Fredericksburg to potty!! He is doing SUCH an amazing job with potty training! He didn't have any accidents all weekend and kept his undies dry for the long car ride.  We had some Joe's Crab shack dessert before heading home.  I really enjoyed my alone time with my big boy.  He is such an awesome kid and I was glad to be able to give him all of my attention for a weekend!  Emerson and Neal had a fun daddy/daughter weekend.

Monday, President's Day, we hung out with my mom and did some shopping!  We rearranged my bedroom, got new bedding and it looks really good! Thanks mom!  
I lost 3.5 lbs. this week at my Monday weigh in bringing my weight loss total to 12.4 lbs.!!!! SO excited my goal is so close!!! 

Monday night one of my friends and I finally got to see Safe Haven!!!  Josh and Julianne were such perfect actors for the movie!! There are a lot of details in the book that weren't in the movie but it was still very good.  She also gave me the sweetest card ever and it totally made me cry and I cried again sharing it with Neal...thanks friend!!!!! :)  

There are a lot of uncertainties and challenges with the year ahead but I am so lucky to have a wonderful family and supportive friends to help me along the way! 

This morning B came in our room at 6:15 and when I asked him to be quiet and lay down because it was still dark he turned to Neal and said "Mommy grumpy. Mommy not happy at all."  We all know I'm not a morning we trudged downstairs and after I got my hot tea in Beckett ran up to me with a big ol hug and said "Mommy happy now!!!!!"  You bet buddy :) I really need to work on the morning person thing....