December 25, 2014

Toys R Us is closed!

Imagine arriving at Toys R Us on Christmas Eve at 9:10PM, with not a single present purchased, only to find the doors locked!

That is a true desperate moment. What would you do?

December 2014 was the year that Mom caught pneumonia.....and Dad did the shopping!

Luckily I had Hanukkah covered in November, but I was planning on Christmas shopping in mid December. While sick in bed for over 2 weeks, Doug volunteered to take care of Christmas. His exact words, "It will be fun, don't worry about a thing. I love shopping on Christmas Eve."

So when the kids went to bed, Doug set out for his definition of "fun". When he arrived at Toys R Us,  he quickly found the store closed at 9:00PM.

He had two options.
1. Answer some VERY tough questions on Christmas morning.
2. Sneak in the exit door!

While one of the last customers was checking out, he snuck in the exit door and made a mad dash as if he were on a game show shopping spree. I only wish he had his Go Pro hooked up to the shopping cart. This post could be exponentially more entertaining.

He arrived at the checkout to find not a "creature was stirring" not even a cashier. After begging someone to take pity on him, he was able to purchase his cart full of Legos. He claims it's the only aisle he could make it to.

Hey beggars can't be choosers. I'm just happy he snuck in the exit door!

Merry Christmas to all the Santa's that are making it happen!

December 16, 2014

The Label Maker and The Secret Keeper

It's the first night of Hanukkah! The night when we kickoff 8 straight days of pure goodness.  It's amazing how fast three kids turn into perfect little angels when a single present is held before them.

Here's a quick recap on the days leading up to the big event!

Last Thursday: I finally finished shopping for all the presents. Now the task was wrapping and hiding them. My closet was too stuffed so I stashed a few under my bed. Brilliant, nobody goes under there!

Last Friday:  Jack got a juggling kit!  As if he needed another excuse to throw balls in the air. While perfecting his juggling act a ball happened to roll under my bed. What happened next? The juggler now resembles the Cheshire Cat. A little taller and a bit more proud of his secret. He walks around the house saying, "I may or may not be getting the Lego Mine Set."

Of course it's not a brotherhood unless you let your siblings know, that you know, what they are getting. Now all  three are pretending they don't "know" their gifts.

In an unrelated event on Friday - Nathan received a label maker......the gift that keeps on giving! If you are looking for that perfect holiday gift for your Type A, highly organized 9 year old, it's perfect!

As only Nate can do, he took it up a notch. It was too obvious to label items for what they are. He decided to start labeling everything with numbers. If I don't know what something is, I will now need to refer to a master key with their descriptions.

In case you are in need of a big black flashlight, please refer to item #2.

My biggest fear now is not losing my mind, it is losing the master key!

Happy 1st Night of Hanukkah

July 28, 2014


Sugar and Spice vs. Snips and Snails 

As a new parent, I remember hoping that my son would be a little different. He would not only loves sports, but could also appreciate a good musical. He would climb every tree but could play the piano or paint a masterpiece. After two boys and a reality check later we had a girl!  I remember thinking, I hope she's not too girly and she still loves sports. I wanted her to be a little tough to stick up for herself, but still be sweet and sensitive. I learned very quickly that no matter what I had hoped for, they each had their own plan.
Yesterday we played a game at lunch asking the question, What is one unique quality about each of you we could put in a yearbook. Example: "The person is most likely to".... Here were the group nominations said about each other.

  • Nate is "Most likely to clean up a room better than any cleaning guy could."
  • Jack is "Most likely to build the best military fortress inside a house."
  • Brooke is "Most likely to not eat an entire meal." 
Nate not only loves sports, he's good at them. He is a super cleaner and a type A personality. He's organized, would keep his room in perfect shape if it weren't for his Type B brother. He's turning into more of a boy everyday, ie sweaty and makes disgusting noises that only Jack thinks are funny. He is talented in art and math, and has some pretty good hip hop dance moves. He likes to run 5K races, and is better than me. He likes to think he's in control of his siblings, and is the happiest when he's on vacation with our family. 

Jack on the other hand is the exact opposite of organized, although he's extremely creative, and could be considered a master builder....and destroyer. He's terrific at sports, but couldn't care less if we got rid of dressers or hampers. Neither of which he uses. He was born with a silver shovel in his hand, and would dig to China if we let him. He thinks anything Nate does is hilarious, and has the loudest belly laugh. He's ultra sensitive and will tear up when he watches a sad movie. He would never change his clothes or his underwear unless somebody told him to, but he sure does clean up well! He is the happiest when you tell him it's Saturday and he has NOTHING to do! 

Brooke's favorite color is pink. She picked that on her own, along with every other piece of clothing she wears. She's opinionated, but really funny. She starts her day with a smile, and ends it with wet pants. We may need to revise her statement to be, "Most likely to still need potty training in 7th grade." If she sees a princess dress, she'll make a beeline to the clothing rack, and loves anything tacky. She gives the greatest hugs and definitely speaks her mind. She LOVES her brothers and calls them, "My boys". She could live on brown rice with soy sauce, strawberry fruit squeezes and a side of orange juice. Her big brown eyes make us all melt and none of the boys can say NO to her. Mommy has to be the bad "guy". She uses dominoes or anything small and rectangular to pretend it's a cell phone. She calls her "friends" and talks quietly for at least 20 minutes. She is the happiest when she's in a sand box, or when we are reading 10+ books together. 

Even though I had my own expectations of what I wanted my children to be, they have far surpassed anything I could have imagined. They are each so unique that it would have been hard to place them in a generic category. I think the poem should read, "What are children made of? Sugar and spice, everything nice AND snips and snails and puppy dog tails. My guess is that most children have a nice combination all all over the above.

February 4, 2014

Here's to the next decade

Turning 40 

As I reflect on the last decade I realize it's difficult to remember the details. It's been the busiest 10 years of my life, yet one of the most enlightening. 20's were busy going to parties, attending classes, getting my first job, going to more parties and watching countless hours of Lifetime . I guess that was "busy" to a 20 year old.

Little did I know when I blew out 30 candles in '04, that I should have wished for three things.

1. Patience
2. Friendships
3. Sleep

Patience for marriage, children, a career, and the countless demands on my time. Patience with my self in accepting these things take practice and every day is a lesson learned. (Patience to not explode when a five year old overflows the toilet for the third time in one day.)

Friendships - Don't put off making time for the friendships in your life that you cherish the most. Death doesn't just happen to old people. If you love your friends, make sure to tell them, even if it's a simple text message. The moment you realize you can't get time back, it's too late. The 30's are complicated. Having children changes your priorities and the time you have to give to other's is limited. Make sure to cherish that time and give it to the people you love most. You'll never regret creating more memories.  The past 10 years have been spent building a family and a marriage, and I wouldn't change that for the world. I only wish I had more time to nurture my existing friendships, and build on new ones. I find that spending time with friends is so rewarding. There is nothing like a good laugh, a terrific bitch session, and advice from new and old friends to help you navigate new waters.

Finally, I don't need to explain why I would have wished for more sleep. If you have kids you know. I do admit though, I feel better prepared for a natural disaster. I think having kids and sleep deprivation is great training for when we have to live on emergency supplies, make life changing decisions, or sleep on a hard floor in the wilderness. (Maybe that's a stretch.)

So bring on the 40's. I now have sleep, so watch out world. I'm working on patience, friendships and my next three wishes.....