Friday, May 31, 2013

7 Quick Takes Friday Vol 13


Today is the day he said "I do" and I said nothing.   True story!  My heart was telling me yes, but my voice was no longer with us.   The week of my wedding I got the worst laryngitis I've ever had in my entire life.  From Thursday to Monday of my wedding weekend it was at it's peak and I lost my voice so badly that I could hardly even whisper!   

Some other members of this marriage say that my silence is always golden to him, but in this case it was awful (yes, even to him)!!  He is really not good at social interactions of the small talking and mushy feeling sharing type, so he was quite remiss that I could not fulfill my half of the marriage bargain in that respect.  I felt fine (miraculously) so the voicelessness factor didn't prevent me from smiling away and awkwardly over-gesticulating all my emotions and gratitude for people coming to my wedding that was obviously not clearly stated by this stoic groom of mine... I still shudder thinking of how silly I must have been, but hey, I was a married woman, so who did I need to impress?  


On anniversaries we all get wished happiness and then asked "so what will you do to celebrate?"  or worse, "what are you going to give him/her?"  Being the not so gifty gift givers we are this falls dead on us.  Uuuuuhhhh, a hug and kiss?  Should I throw in a high five?   Low five?  Too casual?   Maybe I'll status it on facebook!    

We are going to a movie tonight ...  Unrelated to the anniversary.  But we feel like we have to exaggerate to make it seem like going to a matinee showing of Star Trek just the two of us AND our new born son is the romantic evening we planned to commemorate our marriage.  Let's be honest, pretending this is special only makes me feel bad that we don't make it special.  You know?  So I did the one natural thing in this situ.  I googled "origin of anniversaries."  And you know what?!  Dis biz-nasty has been around since the origin of los homo sapiens!   Even before the creation of calendars there is evidence of group celebrations and time tracking to commemorate certain events.  Don't believe this... look in the bible, it even mentions everyone's birth, because it was apparently something important enough to be tracked.   

So now, the special anniversary dinner I have over-thought myself into cooking on Sunday will be brought to you by wiki answers.   I expect a representative here to clean my kitchen after.  Thank you in advance. 


Speaking of googling things if you are bored I highly recommend googling the history of bras.  Candy for your boredom or midnight nursing entertainment needs.   I'm not even being facetious at all.  It's got me filling deaf ears with useless trivia and social structures created by the corsets for weeks now!   One of our extremely brilliant and wise friends followed Someone Else in this Marriage's complaints about my bra history ramblings with an excellent question, "Dude, your wife wants to talk to you about breasts and bras and you have a problem with this because...???" 


Speaking of ramblings...  we have quite the up and coming chatter box in the ranks!  

This is the most gentle he has been with his baby brother in exactly 6 weeks, 3 days and 14 hours. 


It is a very good thing Sam is um, big boned.  He wouldn't last a day as the 3rd brother in this rough house without some padding.  The roughest cow poke in our clan is surprisingly tender hearted with his fellow blondie.  After begging and begging for the last 6 weeks, 3 days and 14 hours to show his brother the train park I mustered the courage to take the whole crew to the train park, in 100 degree weather and attempt to ride on an open moving amusement ride alone 1:4 which should count as 1:8 because toddler boys and very young girl count as double.  

But we made it.  Safely.  Happily.  Unstressfully.

And without unsolicited neighborly advice!  I even had one park going dad comment, "4 kids!  Wow, you make it look so easy..."  Ha!!  Um, wow, glad my cloistering for the past few weeks taught my children to have excellent behavior on our first major solo debut if they ever wanted to leave the confining walls of this house ever again.  


   Do you think you can determine birth order by bath frequency?  I do.  This is from Sam's 4th bath ever, taken yesterday when he was 6 weeks, 3 days and 20 hours old....


Bash seems to be lacking in screen time this month, so I'll leave you all with this smilishous salutation:

I dare you to say he's not adorable!

So happy to be joining Jen!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Just Jonah Vol 3

My hubby and I are doing the unthinkable in front of the kids;  having an adult conversation.
Jonah walks in and says:

"Excuse me Mom, can you please be really quiet?" -Jonah 
"Sorry, buddy, I didn't know I was talking too loud." -Me
"You're not, I just want Daddy to talk to me now." -Jonah 

Jonah is sitting in Sienna's room while she plays with her barbies when I overhear the following:

"Here Jonah, you can be prince charming and marry Princess Ariel." -Sienna
"Noooo!!!  I don't want to marry Ariel.  I want to marry Swimerella because she likes swimming too." -Jonah 

Thanks to facebook and "on this day" I was reminded of a good one from May 16, 2012.  Getting out of the pool Jonah yells:

"I'm wearing my naked!!"-Jonah
"No Jonah, you're just wearing you penis" -Sienna  

After our favorite baby sitter left one day last week Jonah turns around, hangs his head and slumps his shoulders.

"Oh, it's ok my little man, are you sad because Ms Megan had to leave?" -Me
"No, I'm ang-gey because I am not a gentleman." -Jonah
"Why aren't you a gentleman?" -Me
"Because YOU took Ms Megan's keys away from me and I couldn't open her door." -Jonah

Chivalry is not lost, it is just hiding in a loud, passionate 3 year old!  

(Wouldn't you want this little gentleman to be your ring bearer too??) 

Riding bikes around the neighborhood, Jonah strikes up a conversation with every breathing creature we pass with this opener he thought of all by himself: 

"Hi!!  I'm Donah!  It's a beautiful day in my neighborhood!  What's your name?" 

The other night I'm serving a new recipe for dinner so we gear up the kids by singing:

"You gotta try new foods, because it might taste goooo-oood." -All 
"But it probably will still taste a little yucky." -Jonah 
(New popsicles for dessert weren't cutting it either... How can sugary frozenness be yucky?) 

Jonah keeps getting out of his bed during naps and finally comes down and says: 

"Moooom, Moooommmy, I can't go nigh night, it's stinky in my room because somebody keeps tooting in here. "  Jonah, alone in his room. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

7 Quick Takes Friday vol 12

Hello out there, I'm writing in from Sleepless in Arizona.  I had an epiphany I'd like to share with our live cyber audience.

I now know why babies cry when they wake up from naps... they're mad they feel asleep and ruined their reputations of not wanting to sleep when they're supposed to and all.  But at least what he lacks in sleeping patterns he makes up for in moobs. 


Speaking of when we wake up from naps.... we've been auditioning for The Biggest Baby or So You Think You Can Cry around 3:30-4:30 pm daily at this house.  Which is why I spend most of my time between the hours of woke-up-from-nap o'clock to time-to-scramble-the-house-back-together-before-daddy-walks-in-the-door o'clock defying the usual lap space to child ratio laws.


I'd like to take this halfway point to apologize for the especially blurry iphone pictures.  I did have a "wow, I officially dress like a mom who thinks she doesn't and I'm almost middle aged" moment this week, but I had no idea I was so close to losing my eye sight.  The pictures didn't seem THIS bad when I took them...  Maybe you should just read my blog on your cell phone to make this all better. 
Speaking of eye sight. 

He only wears both at the same time. Never just one pair.

Maybe he is secretly a Monster Bash.  It's subtle, but did cha see what I did there?   Monsters have eyes on their foreheads.  And Monster Mash is a cool (to some) song and Bash thinks he's cool (to some) by doing this.  Ok, I'm losing more than my vision.  I think I need to buy a sports car.


Speaking of cool to some.... Sienna keeps asking begging me to youtube hair tutorial videos ever since she caught me watching a messy bun tutorial (don't ask why).  Anyway, she's been devoutly praciting doing her own hair...

Could be worse.  And believe me, it usually is, so I snapped a picture of her first noteworthy piggies. 


On other news of noteworthy self help achievements, Jonah has been waking up and getting himself dressed before coming to get me at 5:45 summerisroughforsleep AM. 

Did you read the little crammed together SUMMER I had in there? 

Just in case you share Jonah's interpretation of early summer here in Arizona, allow me to redirect your thinking by highlighting a few observations for you:  High 90s, rubber soles melting to the pavement as you walk, we could be out swimming by the time breakfast is over.... most people barely wearing clothing.... 

Except Jonah. Who is wearing more clothing than a meat packer. And seems to be content with his choice of one long sleeved shirt under one wool sweater, topped off with one sweater shirt, paired with dress socks and finalized with any mismatching shorts he can find. 

When I asked if his outfit was a little overkill he replied "Dats ok if I wear dis mom, the sweatshirt is for inside in case it's too coldy while I drink my milk."

Well, at least it was premeditated. 

Conversely, Bash prefers to go al naturale this time of year.  He does frequently accesorize his nudey booty with a peach popsicle snotsicle. 

I think the look works for him.  And I haven't heard a single neighborly complaint yet.

As always I'm joing up with OMG Jen who is being published by Ignatius Press!!!  I can't wait to see what her QTs are this week... I'm expecting a lot of wooting and cheering and dancing around and signing her own autographs and all the rightful celebrating she's entitled to after this year!!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013


Look me in the eye and tell me your parents actually made you wear helmets when you were a kid??

That's what I thought. 

But since in this friendly neighbor day and age passerbyers are so concerned with watching moms like myself who "have our hands full" make a slight slip like forgetting all 400 helmets required for our family to "safely" bike at the park results in steam rolls of unsolicited advice and gentle safety reminders to make sure I don't neglect my kids ever again.

The problem isn't that I want them to crack their heads open on the dangerous park grass.  The problem is that kids' heads grow insanely quickly and nice bike helmets are expensive.

Clearly I'm not the only mom who forgets to bring everyone's bike helmets to the grassy park o' danger, because I can usually snag a barely worn helmet at the Other Mother Consignment Store for a fraction of the price.   However, styles and sizes are limited.

Which is how Jonah ended up with the brand new, super cool and highly coveted Disney Cars helmet (poorly pictured above) and Sienna got stuck with Humpty Dumpty Fell An Awful Lot's really previously "loved" helmet (no longer available for pictures as you will soon read).

It was really the outer shell of the helmet that was bad and since it is what's inside that counts... when I saw that some kind sales person had put brand new foam and new, clean straps on I was suckered for the $2.99 stah-eal.  Hey, at least her hair never had to touch used, sweaty foam pads??  Am I right?  Or am I right?

Well, turns out she loved it!  Purple (although I think it was actually sun-faded blue) is her favorite color.

Love-D, as in past tense is the key.

She loved it until the bike-a-thon at her school where she saw everybody else's sparkly new propaganda themed helmet to match their expensive, not-hand-me-downed bikes.


This day was bound to come.

It might have been ok had the preschool equivalent of "Mean Girls" not noticed.

When I picked her up from school she ran into the car crying.  She wouldn't tell me what happened until I tucked her into bed that night.....  The kids laughed at her.  They stole her "ugly, yucky helmet" and threw it on the ground.  They made fun of her and called her "ugly helmet head."

Anger. Disappointment. Sadness.

Why does it have to be this way?  Why even at 4 years old this is the reality of our world?

We talked about this at length. What do we do?  We can afford to buy new helmets.  We just don't.  Kids grow fast.  They hardly use stuff before it's too small.  Hand-me-downs are practical, environmental, responsible.

What message would we send by buying her a new helmet?  We'd only show her they were right.  She had a reason to be embarrassed.  To feel less "cool."  So with uncertainty and slight guilt we pressed on with Humpty's previously loved helmet. 

In her sweet innocence, she actually didn't complain.  It was the only helmet she had and if she wanted to ride her bike I guess she knew without asking that was the deal.  So last weekend we were at a store letting the kids play in the toy asile, just sorta killing time and checking things out when we noticed Sienna just quietly over trying on bike helmets.  She never asked.  She never uttered a word about anything really.  When we asked her what she was up to she said "just looking, Daddy."   Daddy and I exchanged the telapathetic oks before he said, "You know that purple one is really nice, it fits you perfectly too."  She looked at us with eyes so big I was momentarily concerned they might fall out and almost whispered, "I really like it."

And just like that.  The deed was as good as done.

It gave us so much joy and to be honest a little pride to see her reaction!  She was so excited, so happy, so thankful!  I think back to my 5 year old self and how ungrateful and spoiled I was.  We weren't poor per say, but we certainly didn't have a lot of extras.  However, I somehow seemed to demand things and find myself "above" plenty.  I can even remember doing it!  I remember my grandma coming to visit and bringing me a new doll that I didn't like and I'm sure I wasn't polite about not caring for it.  A brand new toy that I didn't like?!  We buy Sienna a brand new safety device and you would've thought we bought her a pony.   I wish I could say we're doing something right... but let's be honest, this gratitude and appreciation is probably a fluke, but I'm gonna take it and run!   

Luckly she insisted on wearing her new helmet the rest of the day, all around the store and even while we ate lunch, so when it was time for us to go on our bike ride she could bolt out of the garage like the safe cyclist she was born to be.

Tour de Neighborhoood here we come!!

Clearly, she knows she is pretty cute. 

But I'm willing to cut her some slack on that since first of all she is and second she'd probably tell you how thankful she was to be so cute.

Friday, May 17, 2013

7 Quick Takes Friday Vol 11


I'm surprised preschool registration doesn't include a limited liability waiver for the small forrest that will be sacrificed in your child's name for the year.  

Personally, I feel a tremendous guilt for the environmental footprint she is making on her 4th year of life all in the name of artwork.  Wait, nope, sorry the guilt is for my filing system a la recycling bin...  It's not that I don't appreciate art.  Especially their sweet, innocent kid art.  I DO appreciate it.  In fact, some of her master pieces are higher quality than most modern art collections at world famous museums.  True story.   

I really should be much better at memory keeping, but alas, I don't really care for clutter and how many beautiful pictures of the same exact thing recreated in various colors and mediums can you save??    All you say.  Well, you're a better parent than I.  

We do a refrigerator rotation system, but we've got a lot of artists in this family and magnet rentals have a week long limit unless the creation has a great deal of comic relief, in which case we extend the lease by about a month before relocating it to the blue receptacle.  Blue Receptacle; slight euphemism Daddy and I have crafted to discretely discuss our "filing system."   

Don't worry though!  I am humane.  Before relocation I have taken pictures and/or scans of my favorite creations and now I am going to dedicate an entire 7QTF to them.  Oh good!  I'm so glad you find that just as rewarding as grandfathered refrigerator real estate! 


Sienna; The Excited New Sister
Revealing our baby secret a little early, Sept 2012
Marker on paper
8 in × 11 in

While some might focus on my less than flattering portrayal or maybe you're thrown a tad by my  tail (no, that's not the secret she revealed), this is my favorite picture of the year.  So much to analyze!  So much I hope you won't... yikes!   I was only 6 weeks along and we had just told the kids our special news.  We like to wait for the first ultrasound to share, but we were praying as a family for the baby to come and we were excited. End of story, they had to know right away. She didn't actually tell a single person the news before it was time... so we will cut her a little slack for answering the question 100% truthfully.  There were 6 people in her family at that moment. 


I love going out with my mommy, Feb 2013
Water color and marker on card stock
8 in × 11 in

This is not anatomically correct. Those are sleeves.  I asked too.  


Sienna; future saint? 
How we adore Jesus, March 2013
Crayon on paper
8 in × 11 in

In her religion class she is given free time to draw or journal about Jesus, Mass, or whatever is on her heart.  I may have shed a tear or two when she came up with this.  Most adults can't even recognize a monstrance and to know exactly what it looks like.  Enter Grandpa to exclaim "They've done good. Real good over there at that school."


Sienna; The Scientist?
This is how food works, Jan 2013
Marker on paper
8 in × 11 in

When given the prompt:  "Draw a part of your body,"  Sienna's teacher explained most kids traced their hands, maybe drew a face or a stick figure...   Not my child.  She drew the digestive system.  Is it wrong that I'm equally as proud of #4 as I am of #5??    

It's hard to read, but she even explained the process pretty well: 

"First, food goes in the mouth (Pink part).  Then it goes down the throat (Green part) and swirls around and around and gets smooched in the stomach (Red part).  After food is done being used, the left overs come out (Not illustrated. Thankfully)."    

I should add the disclaimer here that I was an anatomy and physiology teacher, so when she asks what happens to her food after she eats it I tell her literally and accurately what happens to her food.  The pictures she imagined on her own! 


Sienna's hand
Hand Print Manger, Jan 2013
Paint, yarn and ink on construction paper
6 in × 5 in

I'll consider this her rendition of other classic pieces??   A reprinting of her teacher's model?   Yeah, I've got nothing.  It's just really cute.  We get a lot of hand and feet prints.  I'm sure they're growing. I haven't compared.  I know I will appreciate this down the road and this is such a cute idea that I saved it.  It landed fridge space for well over a month... That and we were on break, so not much new material was coming in.


Sienna the movie star
Theatrical performance of La Posada, Dec 2013
Casting, The Three Inn Keeper's wives
Costume design and make up by an old lady (or maybe young child) at a street market in central Mexico imported by her teacher.   

This is cheating.  She didn't kill a forrest for this.  But it is extremely precious and she took her little role so seriously!  La Posada is a reenactment of the Nativity Scene. As an Inn Keeper's Wife she had to help turn away Mary and Joseph when they asked for "Posada" or a place to stay. We practiced her lines "No room here!" for days.  First she tried it with some attitude.  Then with remorse.  Then a bit of humor.  She settled on a firm, but sympathetic rejection.  

Actually, I'm not sure how she ended up doing it on opening day. Unfortunately, I was trapped behind more eager picture taking mothers who weren't 70 months pregnant hauling around 2 other inappropriately vocal and rambunctious toddler boys while enjoying the performance.  

If you're still reading, wow, thank you!  
Go see Jen for some 7QTFs with likely better topic variety

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

I got a promotion!

Not me... there's no greater promotion than mother... I'm pretty happy with my benefits package, but the pay is lousy...

Sorry, back on track.

It is Little Ms Growing too fast who had her preschool promotion this morning

Walking out of her classroom for the last time
May 15, 2013

Walking out of her classroom for the first time
Sept. 4, 2012

Last night when I asked her what her favorite part of preschool was she said journaling (apple doesn't fall far from my tree...), painting and getting it all over her face, and playing in the mud on the playground (that part was from Daddy's tree).  

She wasn't as upset as I thought to say goodbye.  I always get/got kinda sad at the end of school years or any goodbyes for that matter.  

It's probably because I am not a hugger.  

Goodbyes involve hugs... can't do that.  What if one of us smells?  What if you happen to be exactly chest height on me (like most people)?   Awwwwwkward.   It's not easy to hug a tall woman, I'll spare you with a smile and distant wave. 

Back to Sienna, who is a better upgraded version of her mother and DOES like hugging and has no problems with goodbyes.  

She strutted right on down the aisle ready for her moment. 

One of the teachers didn't read her names in alphabetical order... what was she thinking??  How can parents prepare to take pictures?? How do you know when to start watching again?

Thank you Miss Dulce for alphabetizing our class!  

Sienna also appreciated it and caught on when she arrived to our letter...

She jumped up for the hand shake before the "-er" left Dulce's lips

Then whipped right back around to take her seat again (she took practice verrrry seriously). 

"Wait, stop so your mom can get a picture." Thank you Miss Dulce, who doesn't pretend this entire show isn't basically about getting this one single picture! 

We celebrated after with cake next to our best friends from school. 

Such a lovely bunch of coconuts standing in a row

Cell phone shot for Daddy who was there "in spirit" 

We're so proud of the little lady you are becoming!   We fall more and more in love with you ever day! 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Raising Jonah

A saturday in the life of Jonah

5:40 am-  Tip toes (right like that's true) into my room to wake me up with a gentle pounce and slight smack somewhere on my body with the remote in his hand.  

"Can I watch Fireman Sam?"   

Since I usually just fell asleep a few hours before this request I'm pretty sure I rarely say no. 

6:45 am-  After the last 45 minutes of a whiny 4 year old's british accent and Jonah repeatedly demanding some milk, Daddy finally agrees to getting Jonah his milk.

 "Can you hold me while I drink it and pick my toes?" 
(I added the picking toes part... he usually does that anyway)

7:15 am- The rest of the average child population starts to get out of bed.  By now, we are too tired to respond to his antics, so Jonah eagerly welcomes fresh tormentees to the new day.

"Wanna play dis witch me so I can frustrate you to no end while I spill the water out of all the tools you are trying to use?" 
(Ok, I added the frustrate part... we all know that's included in the invitation)

8:30 am-  Finishes not eating anything he asked us to cook for him for breakfast and heads outside to recreate the events of Fireman Sam for that day.

"No Mom, I have to take Gator (his lovie) outside today, he's my rest-coo dog, see he's wearing his hat and jacket he is NOT gonna get all dirty." 

9:30 am-  All clothes have been removed in time for his daily strut across the lawn.

"I'm don't need clothes. I'm wearing my naked." 
Direct quote folks... and might I add, I'd want to wear my naked if it looked as cute as this too.

10:00 am-  While we capture him and his crew to get dressed for a birthday party, he conveniently sneaks off with my phone to take approximately 1,348, 370 blurry pictures that I will get to go back and delete one by one from my camera and photostream.  

Don't try to tell me it wasn't you. 

11:30 am-  Inhales the pizza like it was his first meal since the last time he ate pizza. 

1:00 pm-  Back home nursing a post-sugar and carb hangover.

"I am not eating my mocos (boogers). My finger has a boo boo."

1:30 pm-   Tries to convince me it's humanly possibly for a 3 year old who woke up at 5:40 am to not be ready for a nap.

We know this game.  Here's the evidence from the last time he tried to tell us the same thing about 24 hours earlier.

3:00 pm-  Awake from not not sleeping because he told us his eyes would not going to go sleepies.

3:02 pm-  Realizes Samuel isn't still sleeping in his room with him.  Screams from across the house inquiring for his whereabouts, which never doesn't wake up everyone else....

  "Phew!  Dere he is!  Do not put him in your bed for nappies Mom!  He has to sleep in the boy's room."

3:30 pm-  We throw encourage him to go outside with some snacks so we can try to console his prematurely awoken brothers back to sleep. 

Let me guess, you're not picking your nose, your finger has another boo boo? 

3:30 pm and 20 seconds - Daddy hears him throwing objects in our pool....

"Um... I donno... I fink Daddy is angey because I frew rocks in da pooool. Just on accident." 

3:35 pm-  Jonah survives feigning attention to Daddy's pointless lecture for 4 entire minutes.

"Ok. I won't do it one more time."

3:45 pm- Jonah wins.

"Ok Daddy.  How 'bout we can just go swimming and I'll get the rocks for you!" 
throw rocks = go swimming 
Geeeee Bob, why do our kids misbehave? 

5:45 pm-  Worn out into compliance, Jonah eats his dinner willingly and quietly.  Recognizing his rare slip from mischievousness he quickly suggests on account of their good behavior for dinner we go get sta-berry shakes from In and Out.

Ok fine. 
I was the one suggesting the shakes... but you could hardly say he disagreed with me.

7:20 pm-   That's a warp baby.

See you again tomorrow, 5:30 am sharp!