Category Archives: My Kids

It's A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, Unless You're Sitting in My Living Room

Yesterday was election day here in the U.S of A.  Being the intelligent person I am, I gathered all the kids in the car so they could participate in the process by standing in an hour-long line with me.  To enhance the experience, I forgot the Halloween candy and interrupted their nap time.

As awesome as that experience was (envision my 2 oldest running and screaming in the tiny, crowded voting station and you’ll get the idea), it did not compare to the masterful mess my kids created in the living room that morning.

They followed an airtight recipe:

  • Two boxes of Legos
  • A package of Saltines crackers
  • A bag of dried Cheerios
  • 16 oz. of spilled water
  • 1 container of dress-up clothes
  • 1 container of dolls and stuffed animals

Which resulted in this:


The mess was – is – epic people.  EPIC.  (Sadly the photo does not do it justice.)

Which is why I will be spending my morning cleaning and singing Snow White’s “Whistle While You Work.”

Alright friends, spill it.  What is the best (worst?) mess made by your kid(s)?



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Memories Captured, Thanks Technology!

After my fifth (or was it seventh?) phone crashed in 2 years, I convinced my husband that it’s time I upgrade.  Like that, I had a high-tech smart phone with all the cool things it offered: apps for everything – maps, Facebook, Blogger, e-mail – and a camera.  A nice camera.  Better than my point and shoot camera, in fact.

So, after a long hiatus from picture taking, I started capturing little memories.  Andrew’s grumpy faces, Emily’s mischievous doings, Emily and Andrew playing and laughing together and Ben sitting with his kids.  With Picasa and Instagram suddenly available from my phone, I’ve taken more photos in a few months than I have in the last year and I’ve enjoyed taking these pictures.

With my weird personality quirks, it’s simple things – like a smartphone – that enable me to engage with my kids and actively capture our moments together. It’s what helps keep me alive and going, especially as I balance school and family and pregnancy (yes, an entity all its own).

While my privileged state is clearly shown through this post, I don’t care.  I am glad for technology and extremely grateful for my smartphone.

{Five for Five Day Three: Pictures. Join in!}


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When I Get That Urge to Kick Something, I Think of Emily (And Usually Do It Anyway)

Emily is very expressive.  Lately, when things are not going her way, she growls and says, “I’m frustrated!” Or, if Andrew is not doing things the way she wants him to, she angrily grunts “Andrew! Stop!”

I know exactly where she gets her grunts and expressions from – me.  While I could sit and feel guilty that my daughter is learning bad behaviour from her mom, I choose to look at her angry grunts, scowls, and snide remarks as evidence of her emerging self.  Like all kids her age, she imitates what she sees, so all my explosions of frustration and anger teach her how to respond when she faces similar situations.  And I don’t see any problem with that.

Frankly, I think my responses are fairly mild.  I don’t yell, spank, or call her and her brother names (besides pooky pants or other silly made up words) and I am quick to apologize and show an excessive amount of love.  Something that she has also picked up on.

When Andrew is having a hard day, she hugs him and gives him extra attention and special treatment.  When I am sick, she rubs my back and says, “I’m sorry momma.”  If Andrew falls down, she runs to him and says “are you okay?”  And, best of all, she will randomly tell all of us how much she loves us.

Yeah, my daughter can get angry – like me – but, more often and more importantly, she is a sweet girl who willingly and freely expresses her affections toward her loved ones.  I can honestly say I taught her that too.

****Don’t forget to comment on THIS POST for a chance to win a book!  I promise, it’s worth it!****


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Top Ten In 2011: Kid Quotes

Leading up to 2012, I am going to post my top 10 picks of the year 2011. It’s going to be fun.

Emily and Andrew are brilliant, which also makes them scheming little squirts that plan every bit of their trouble-making escapades.

Andrew is, undoubtedly, our little goof ball.  He enjoys hearing the sound of his voice echo in stores and outside (see #8) and has learned that the louder he sings, the more his voice echoes.  He finds joy in jumping on and off furniture and me.  His goofy grin always makes me melt.

Emily is the expert at talking her way out of trouble.  She uses the logic of a teenager (and is equally incapable of recognizing the flaws in said logic).  She has a wicked tongue that can spew things like “I don’t like you,” and “you’re my favorite” in one sentence.  Clearly, she is an active observer of the world around her.  Despite her sass, a quality she must have inherited from me, she gives the best snuggles.

I find myself laughing every day at the antics of these kiddos.  The following is a sampling of my favorite 2011 quotes.

10. “I don’t like that!” -Andrew.  No is overrated.

9.  Me: “What are you doing up?” “I sleeping.” -Andrew, laying down on his daddy’s face with his eyes closed.

8. “LOTS AND LOTS OF FIERTUCKS [firetrucks]” -Andrew, in every store.

7.  “Go downstairs, Mommy!” -Emily when getting into trouble.

6. “Daddy, I don’t want to go to Azzouri [Missouri]!” -Emily, when driving across the country. I think she feared the humidity.

5. “I watch Mommy show.” -Andrew, pointing to The Office. I’ve created an early addict.

4.  “I didn’t eat your chocolate, Mommy.” -Emily with chocolate all over her face.

3.  “I’m 21 and I drink beer!” -Emily, in the grocery store.

2. “Mommy, I don’t need to go to bed, I be 18.” -Emily, the master negotiator.

1. “Mommy, I don’t like the monsters. They have penis noses.” -Emily, referring to Sesame Street.

I think I lucked out with these two.



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Growing Together

With Emily being my first, I feel like I am blindly groping my way through the dark room of parenthood.  Her twos kicked my trash and now her threes are taking me on a Merry-Go-Round ride of emotions.  She picks up on everything I talk with Ben about and is starting to understand and fully express the various emotions of this human state.

Her wit is dizzying.

But rather than spinning out of control, I find us on the same ride: sometimes speeding up and sometimes slowing down.  The Universe is in control and the good we send into space returns, twenty-fold, keeping our ride bumpy, but safe.

I’m not always sure what to expect, but I feel confident that she and I will enjoy this ride and learn as we grow together.

This is part of Galit and Alison’s, Memories Captured Linky.





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Teaching Values Early

Back in September, Emily wanted to do things that were slightly dangerous–like driving.  Rather than saying no, I explained to her she could drive, when she turned 16.  After that I provided age requirements for everything: chewing gum at 8, working at 18, dating at 49, etc.

A parents greatest pride is when they see their teachings actively followed on.  My point came today, at the grocery store.

Pushing the cart back to the car, Emily yells from within the basket, “I be 21 and I drink BEER!!”

I am so glad we are teaching our children values from an early age.


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My Snuggle Buddies

Last night, a little before picking me up, Emily told Ben that she did NOT want me to hold her.  When I got into the car, she gave me the look of death and ultimately rejected any of my attempts to speak to her.

Hello 3-turning-16-year-old.

After we got home, she opened up and let me hold her.  In fact, she didn’t want me to stop holding her.  She refused to sleep until one or both of us were next to her, rubbing her face and hair.

Emily wasn’t alone in this new practice, her brother also refused to sleep until I went in there and rubbed his back.

I remember how frustrating practices like these once were for me.  Ridiculous thoughts like, “they are doing this on purpose! Don’t they know I need a break from them?” would pop into my head throughout the entire process.

I still have moments of mounting annoyance by certain aspects of the kids’ bedtime routines–like when Emily empties out the dressers because I have locked the toys away–but, overall, I am happy when I get to spend a few more minutes with my kiddos.

These emotions increase when they climb into bed with us.  Snuggling with my two kids is my favorite time of night.  So, even though my kids technically don’t sleep through the night, or stay in their own beds, I gladly welcome them into our room and bed so we can all enjoy a good snuggle session underneath the warm covers.  It reminds me that Emily does love me, even when she feels frustrated by my new status as a working mom. It also tells me that she just needs more love.

Don’t we all?


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