Monthly Archives: February 2010

And I’m Back

Last night the girls and I once again survived the cross-country trip back “home.”  The two weeks of good friends, family and sunshine far outweighed the HELL that was flying alone with the girls.  No it wasn’t the first or last time I’ll do it and yes I did know what I was getting into, but it still doesn’t change the fact that it was so incredibly unpleasant.  I wish I could say I was better about keeping my cool, but I’m not.  I was grouchy, frustrated and annoyed.  Good thing my girls still seem to love me.  I must say though that BQ was a rock star.  AMAZING.  She smiled and unlike me actually seemed to enjoy both flights and the layover.  Molé, well um, yah.  Alas, the only way I can sum up the last two weeks, my current grouchy mood and the humor that is being a mom is with the infamous list of rambling thoughts.  Are you excited?  That’s what I thought.  So, without any further introduction, my random thoughts of late.

Coffee is often more than just a beverage.  It is a way of life.

Never underestimate the  joy of a day in the sunshine.

24 days without my husband might as well be 24,000,000.

Good friends who really know you are the best cure for the blues.

My parents are really good at loving me and my girls.

My girls are much more adaptable and flexible than I think they will be.

Chick Fil A is my ultimate fast food kid friendly fantasy come true. (and yet it does not exist where I live).

You can never eat too many chimichangas and they are surprisingly good for leftovers at 9:45 in the morning.  (did that twice).

Seeing someone you love suffer from a disease like Alzheimer’s isn’t fun.

Getting roses from your hubby while he’s thousands of miles away is a wonderful benefit of modern technology.

You can accumulate A LOT of junk mail in two weeks.

It is easy to get sucked into sports like Ice Dancing, even though if ever asked you would totally mock them in public.

When your child wakes up every hour for a couple of nights (and she was not born in the last month) it can make you rather fatigued.

When it takes you days to realize that said child is suffering from an ear infection it causes a bit of remorse.

It’s a sweet, sweet thing to see your children love on a baby.

Getting together with old friends, meeting their kids for the first time, and catching up rocks.

People that stand by and watch you struggle to open a heavy glass door while pushing a stroller, wrangling a 4 year old, and looking haggard after 7 1/2 hours of flying without ever bothering to see if you need help, should be taken straight to prison.  Or worse.

Portable DVD players might be the answer to many of the world’s problems.

It’s hard to live where you would like to visit and visit where you would like to live.

Being a short 2 1/2 hour plane ride away from my parents after we move will be AWESOME.

Whining does bad, bad things to my sanity.

I’m proud to be at home with my girls, even on the hardest days.

I love Mexican food.

Showers with water pressure are so nice.

I have so much more to learn about what it means to love unconditionally.

I really like not wearing a coat.

When a man rams his suitcase into my four-year old little girl while pulling it off of the baggage claim and doesn’t apologize or check to see if she’s okay, it bothers me.  Okay infuriates me.  Yah I might question his species of origin.

Two year olds who use the plane, airport, and other random potties on a trip without an accident are awesome.

Sometimes the best way to shake off the stress of travel is with a #1 from McDonald’s with a regular Coke instead of diet.  (if you know what’s in that you are just as bad as me).

I am grateful, more and more each day, for my parents.

The Doc is going to have three ladies clamoring for his attention upon his arrival tomorrow.

I get a little excited every time the chairman reveals the secret ingredient.

I probably waste a lot of time watching t.v.

I am a work in progress and goodness I have so much more to learn at 31 than I thought I would.

I am now a “grown up” when I sit at the kids’ table.

When my children get extremely overtired they enter into a manic state that can only be described as crazy.

When it comes to doing what is best for my children, I often have to make decisions that disappoint others.

When did our girls get to be 2 and 4?

I am blessed indeed.

Well, that’s about it for now.  What is swirling in your head tonight?  I’d love to hear it!

I’m Still Here

Big apologies for taking a little blogging hiatus.  Oh you didn’t notice?  No worries we’re still friends.  Well, the reason I have been MIA is a good one, a sunshine and warm days outside with fresh squeezed orange juice kind of reason.  That’s right, the girls and I headed west for a little break from the snow and some fabulous time to soak up the goodness of my parents and their beautiful weather.  I tend to forget during winter that there are still places where the sun does shine and you actually want to be outside.  The girls have been obsessed with the grass, chalk, picking fruit off the trees, running free and NOT wearing coats.  Heaven.

For me, there is always something sweet about coming home.  I haven’t lived here for 13 years now, lots of things have changed in my old neighborhood, and yet so much is still the same.  I keep wondering if I will ever find a place that will feel as much like home.  The Doc and I have moved and moved these past ten years and so much of me is tired of change.  Being somewhere familiar is comforting.  Like a big comfy sweatshirt and pants with an elastic waistband.  I don’t have to worry about whether I say “ya’ll” too much or too little, use the correct term to describe carbonated drinks (pop, coke, soda, soft drink…WHO CARES!!), and am around people who are just plain old like me.  I think we all love to be known and to feel like we belong and while I do like many things about our current home in New England, feeling comfortable or belonging have not been part of my experience.  I think part of the reason that I can feel okay with living somewhere as the odd woman out is because I always have home.  Ever present, never changing too much and just a plane flight away.  And did I mention the chimichangas?

I am going to continue to soak up this glorious weather, enjoy the company of family and friends, and wear shorts in February.  Um yes.  8 more days until The Doc returns from Uganda and a week until we head back east.  Until then I will battle colds (BQ) and teething (Molé) with grass on the ground which somehow makes it much, much more bearable.  I’ll be back on here more regularly in a week or so.  Sending sunshine to all those living in the tundra.  🙂

Okay This is Good

A couple of weeks ago while I was watching The Biggest Loser (you know you love it) Jillian Michaels (that crazy combination of scary and hot that both men and women are drawn to) talked about microwaving fruit. That’s right. No this was not a cheesy over the top or blatant product placement type moment, it was her giving us a “tip” on how to get healthy. Any-who the basic advice was to take an apple with some water, throw on a little cinnamon and place the concoction in the microwave for a tasty treat. Well people, I am here to tell you that Miss Michaels is no liar. I am now obsessed with my nightly fruity goodness. After tweaking the amount of water, size of the apple pieces, and adding other fruits I think I have a winning combo. So here it is. And even though I can’t exactly measure up to the same level of scary/hottness that Jillian does, you should still obey me and make this. Mmm k?

Amy and Jillian’s Apple Pear Delight

1/2 a sweet apple
1/2 a pear (ripe, none of that firm/dry/tasteless funny business)
Cinnamon how you like it
Cloves if you dare
3 T water

Dice up the fruit, slices at the biggest but I prefer bite size pieces, and add the water and spices. Give it a quick mix. Put the mixture into a microwave safe bowl with a loose cover. (for me this means using my white Corelle bowl with navy blue stripes on the bottom with a small matching plate across the top). Microwave for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes. Take it out and let it sit for about 15 minutes covered. And there you have it. Sweet, warm and totally guilt free. Enjoy!

For Your Convenience?

You may have noticed that I added a little “subscribe” button to the right. I’m not sure how you follow the blogs you read, but I will say that I have found Google Reader to be a great tool for saving me time. Rather than having to randomly check the blogs that you read to see if there is something new, you can go to one page and see which ones are up to date. Neat-o? I think so. The other option here, and for many others, is to sign up so that you get an e-mail when there is a new post. I chose Google Reader because I love having everything in one place, but you might be more of the e-mail type. Regardless, I thought I’d help save you good people some time. If anyone has another system they use for streamlining their blog reading, I’d love to hear about it in the comments!!

Happy blog reading. 🙂

Princess Party

Who knew that hosting a small princess birthday party for seven little girls, my two included, could be such an exhausting task? Oh you knew that? Okay, well maybe I should have too, but goodness when those little ladies headed out yesterday I wanted to pass out. My girls were of course way too wound up on cake and the excitement of the party and did not go down for naps until close to 3 p.m. Not cool. Luckily I allowed myself to basically pass out as soon as they were both contained in their room. (did I mention that was after I started crying and telling BQ “I’m just so tired?” classic). At any rate, I think it was really fun for the girls and we ended up having a very relaxing night at home.

It could have been the simple stress of planning a party, or doing it with The Doc out of town, but for whatever reason I was really drained yesterday. It has only been 48 hours since my man left and I am already missing him far more than is comfortable. 22 more days to go, people, so I need to get it together. All in all I have come to the conclusion that I am so grateful to have someone to miss. I am completely capable of doing life on my own and of taking care of these girls by myself, but I would much rather do it with that hunk of man beside me. How blessed am I? Marriage can be hard and full of ups and downs, but man am I glad I am doing it with The Doc. At the end of the day he is my little piece of heaven on earth and when he’s gone I am acutely aware of his absence. Thank God. What would that say if I weren’t? I want a marriage that is passionate, engaged, and marked by a deep friendship and I have to think if I didn’t have that, then this distance wouldn’t sting quite so much. So I’m going to embrace “the burn,” and yes cry frequently and be dang grateful that I have such a guy. That I am somebody’s Mrs. and get to wear his name and care for his children. I am proud of who I am as Amy and am by no means defined by this role of being a wife, because it is just one of many that I play, but I am delighted that at the end of the day I have a partner in life. This guy chose to make a go of it with me and for that I am forever grateful. I know it isn’t easy, and some of you might be really struggling in your marriage right now, but hang in there. Just as I am not enjoying this distance, I am grateful for all that I am learning about how much I love my husband through it all and I pray that you will be blessed with something that will teach you and your spouse the same. Hang in there, friends.

To give and receive love in marriage…I can’t think of anything I treasure more.

The Look

If you come to my blog on a regular basis you have probably noticed that lately I have been changing the look pretty often. Let’s just say I am totally unsatisfied with the layout. Alas, this blog is not about looking pretty, but still, I don’t want it to be an eyesore. So hang in there with me as I attempt to find something I can stomach. 🙂

BTW, The Doc left for Uganda yesterday so I should apologize upfront for what I’m sure will be some additional lamenting, complaining and whining about missing my man. What can I say? But today is not a day for missing my man, I’ve got a princess party to pull off for two cute little ladies. Here’s hoping I can channel my inner “Martha” and make this the princess party ever.

Oh THAT’S Why

The last 48 hours with Molé have been frustrating. She decided that she no longer wanted to poop on the potty and therefore went twice on the floor and three times in her pull up at night time. Not cool. Not cool at all. Plus, why oh why do it on days when she was pooping so much! Last night I put her down, as usual, and braced myself for another poop incident. Let me back track a minute. Last week this little one realized that if she calls out “potty” from her crib, Mommy will immediately come into her room and pluck her from said crib resulting in a few more moments of freedom before having to go to sleep. Two nights in a row she got me. I ran into the room, unzipped the footed jammies, tossed her onto the potty and…nothing. That’s right, she looked up at me with a sheepish grin and didn’t go even a drop. Well, after her totally working me two nights in a row, I decided that I wasn’t going to be fooled again. Unfortunately for me, that led to three nights in a row, yes 3, of her pooping in her pull up after me ignoring the “potty” cries for 20 minutes. Awesome.

Anyway, last night was the third time, but a bit different. Let’s just say the contents were, ahem, abnormal. I took care of that nasty load and put her back to bed. At around 11 as I was headed to bed (dang NBC decided to start Biggest Loser at 9pm instead of 8pm) I heard some coughing. Then more followed by crying. After going in and out for a half hour I decided it was time for some drugs. My head hit the pillow around 12:30 only to hear more coughing. The coughing continued until 4:30 when it once again turned into crying. This time, I went in to find a very hot and uncomfortable baby who was dry heaving. After some snuggles and more meds I put her back to bed and tried to get a little more sleep myself. Alas, the coughing continued. This morning she isn’t as fussy as I had expected but is wheezing which means inhaler fun. (which is actually the opposite of fun). All of this is to say that it never fails on the days when my kids do things like poop their pants, throw extra tantrums, or seem altogether out of sorts that within 24 hours I find out why in the form of an illness. You would think this would help me to have a bit more patience, but it doesn’t. No wonder she was off in the potty department and gave me all kinds of attitude about it. She probably felt like crap and rather than giving her comfort I gave time-outs. The truth is, we were both a bit off.

As I watch that Mother of the Year Award slip ever so slightly farther away I’m at peace knowing that she will consume copious amounts of juice today, be allowed extra snuggles with Mr. Bear who is usually confined only to the bed, and get all the snuggles and loving she wants. And, that she will once again poop on the potty. I’m going to try and avoid a shoulder full of snot while I soak up these precious moments to hold my sweet baby. Time is too short and I want to breathe deeply of my dear little one.

The “Musts” of Life

I don’t know what was in the water Sunday, but The Doc and I went on an organizing/sorting/cleaning frenzy that began in the basement and ended with lot and lots of piles around the house. Luckily these piles have their own destination and I am hoping that they will find their ways to their new homes soon. Can you say five empty rubbermaid-esque storage bins? Um yes.

Sunday night after the girls were in bed and The Doc was at work, I decided to tackle some projects in our room. I basically unearthed an under-bed storage container that held about ten old journals from ’95 to ’03ish, plus or minus some months and years. As I flipped through the pages I will admit feeling, well, bored. There really wasn’t much dirt, no ramblings of a teenager in love or going off the deep end. You know, the feelings you thought you had in those days. Maybe I wasn’t as nuts as I had previously thought. Or maybe I was just smart enough not to record my insanity. Regardless, those were some lame journals and I send them straight to the recycle box. So hey if you’re in the area and you want to know what my friends and I did junior year on a Saturday night, feel free to dig around and find a detailed account of us meeting up at so and so’s house, then going to such and such a restaurant/Denny’s/The Village Inn, and it being “rad.”

After the journal excavation, I decided to sort through my jewelry. If you know me at all, you know that I am not one who dons a great number of baubles on a regular basis. When I wore earrings yesterday, inspired by my discoveries, BQ was so puzzled and asked, “So, do you really have holes in your ears?” But, I have been given so many beautiful things over the years and it was cool to find them again. One of the best parts was pulling out my jewelry box. I’m not the first owner of this box, as it was my moms and possibly my grandmas, but I’m not sure. Regardless, when you open it there is no “new box” scent. Instead you’re greeted with a musty scent. What’s great is that it doesn’t leave you reaching for the febreeze, but wanting to go in for a better look and a deeper breath. It’s a scent that is sure to hold a very good story.

As I sorted through the first clothes that my girls wore after entering this world, a gold bracelet with my maiden name engraved on it from my 16th birthday, and file folders full of ten year old documents I was struck by just how much stuff I’ve accumulated. I know I’ve talked about stuff before, but this time around it was different. I realized that it isn’t necessarily the stuff itself, but where the stuff can lead us that we desire. The reason I don’t throw out my jewelry box and purchase a new one is because I want to experience that jewelry box scent when I open it. To feel like a little girl wandering into my mom’s room asking her to show me her rings again. Just like I couldn’t part with my grandma’s 40 year old passport, which now resides in the bottom of the jewelry box. And that sweet little outfit that we brought our girls home from the hospital in was also the one that my parents brought me home in thirty years ago. How could I toss that in a pile of random clothes that my girls have outgrown?

These “musts” of my life are my monuments, my sacred items, and my history. In the end, it isn’t the stuff itself, but what that stuff allows my heart to feel and my senses to experience. When I put on my Nana’s watch with its turquoise/silvery goodness I can see just a little bit more clearly the outline of her face and her hands in my mind. I live with things that are musty, because they are too precious to forget. I’m learning what it means to get rid of the “stuff” while holding onto the treasures. Not because they themselves are valuable or necessary, but because events and people of my past are too important to leave behind. So please come over, and smell my jewelry box. I’ll even show you my high school ring.