Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Giving myself a break

Sometimes you need a break. Sometimes, as much as I love making and managing my to do lists, and as much as I enjoy the productivity that comes with never sitting down, you have to sit down. I have to sit down.

So this week I'm letting myself off the hook.

We're eating off of paper plates because I am sick to death of constantly doing dishes. It never ends. Seriously, we need a dishwasher the size of our bathroom.

We're eating really (really) easy meals. I love to cook but it does add an element of busyness to our evenings that I don't always relish. And it adds to the above point of creating more dishes. This is our menu for the week. I estimate I'll dirty approximately one dish cooking the asparagus and one other cooking the mac and cheese. Two dishes that will go directly into the dishwasher that I will not wash by hand even though it would be much more efficient.

It's amazing how knowing that I don't have to cook but merely "prep" dinner immediately calms me. I know I won't have to rush around and attempt to keep the kids happy while I put together a dinner that I don't even eat because I'm so busy trying to clean up the kitchen while they eat. Instead, I'm going to sit and eat with them and then throw my un-environmentally friendly dishes directly into the trash. I hope the crunchy hippie Gods forgive me.

I'm also not cleaning this week. Not at all. I will straighten up because I truly cannot function in a cluttered environment, but I will not clean any more than is absolutely necessary. I will wipe the kitchen counters and table and I will clean if a mess occurs (what am I saying- when a mess occurs) but I will not clean the showers, mop the floors, or spend my evening dusting.

I'm not doing any laundry. I'm letting our nanny do it all today.

If I'm tired and I want to sit and relax with Madelyn I'm going to let her watch Tinkerbell and feel no guilt whatsoever. She's happy, I'm happy, no harm done.

And you know how I'm going to spend my evenings? I'm going to sit on my butt and watch TV. I'm going to finally catch up on my overflowing DVR, spend some time with my favorite reality stars, light a candle, drink red wine, and relax.

What a novel concept.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Exhausted and grateful

I wanted to write a post about what the bambinos are up to these days, not because I think anyone other than my mother is interested, but because I don't want to forget. And I find myself forgetting little things every day so it's best that these little nuggets be preserved in writing somewhere for they are surely doomed if left in my brain.

Madelyn Grace, 3 years old, April 2012
Miss Madelyn, or as she'd prefer we call her, "Princess Madelyn Grace," is into hair bows, barbies, ruffles, pink, nail polish, her baby dolls, purses, and of course, princesses. This one is all girl, folks. She has the most hilarious personality and so often she says things so completely inappropriate that we'll have to go into the other room so she doesn't see us laugh. She is so loving and the most wonderful big sister to Davis. She's just dying for him to get bigger so she can squeeze him to pieces. The other day she looked up at me and said "Mommy, I want to hold your hand just because I love you." I about died. But on top of being loving she is feisty, which while it can make these years a little testy, is a trait I love in her. Everything is a negotiation. If I say we're having oatmeal for breakfast she says "how 'bout...oatmeal and string cheese?" or "how 'bout I eat while I watch a show." And she likes to say "capeche?!" like they used to say on Full House to make sure we understand her request. She calls Davis "Bud" like I do, though I have no idea where that came from. She would live in a dress in a backyard fort like the picture above if we let her and it amazes me every single day what a beautiful, polite little girl she's becoming. She's definitely not my baby anymore.

Davis Allen, 7 months old, May 2012
And then there's this one. My tough little man who is already covered in bruises from attempting things no seven month old should be. This past month Davis started crawling, going from laying down to sitting, and pulling up on everything. If you want to know the real difference between girls and boys here it is: girls never stop talking and boys never stop moving. The end.  It thrills me to see him thriving in this way, though I will admit it's quite busy around here. He's climbing the curtains, the furniture, his sister, everything. But oh my goodness is he a joy. And he loves his mama. It makes me so sad to see how quickly he's growing up- I want him to stay my chubby delicious little baby forever. He's eating lots of baby food, the majority of which I've made myself which I'm shamelessly proud of. And he thinks his big sissy is the most hilarious thing he's ever seen. All she has to do is look at him and he lights up with a smile and a giggle. He drives her crazy always taking her toys and knocking over the block castles she's constructed, but I'm so grateful they will have each other to grow up with. I always tell him how lucky he is that he got Madelyn as his big sister though I know it doesn't feel that way when she's bossing him around, which she does, constantly already.
Being a mom to two kids is not easy, but there is truly something to smile about every second of every day. They are the most amazing blessings and I am unspeakably grateful for them.

To Madelyn and Davis- if throughout the course of your life I can give you two one ounce of the joy you've given me, I will consider my life a wild success. Love, Mommy.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tidbits from my week...

Random tidbits from the week so far…

  • I had a wonderful Mother's day. It rained outside and I stayed in my robe and jammies until lunch which is this girl's idea of a good time. Matt made my favorite chocolate chip pancakes, the kids loved on me all day, and they also gave me a gorgeous (and way too nice but I love it so I'm keeping it) purse from J Crew. I am a lucky lucky girl.
  • I vowed to my husband, and my self respect, to refrain from ever contributing to the ratings of the Bachelor/Bachelorette franchise for as long as I shall live Amen. And I broke my promise. They really lost me after the Jason/Molly/Melissa fiasco and I've successfully avoided the past few seasons, but something about sweet single mom Emily roped me right back in. She's just precious and I love that they're producing the season in Charlotte so she can stay at home with her little one. It actually almost felt real…until the men showed up. Honestly, ABC. Shame on you. She's more likely to find a husband in the tampon aisle at Walmart than from the group you "expertly curated" for her. I felt like so many of the guys were chosen for shock value and really, what was with the awkward entrance comments? Am I going to continue to watch? Yes. Am I proud of this? No. No I am not.
  • I got these shoes per another blogger's recommendation and I am in love with them and they were TWENTY DOLLARS. I'd say that's fun money* well spent.
  • I am reading three books right now and clearly have commitment issues when it comes to reading material.
  • I am going to attempt to make a video of a typical conversation between me and Madelyn. Everything is a negotiation. And she has mastered the loud exhaling "UGH!" and condescending eye roll when she doesn't get her way and it is hilarious. I knew with a little girl these things were coming but I thought she'd be closer to 13. Not 3.
 *Fun money- the very small amount of money the hubs and I get each month to spend as we wish. Also known as our respective allowance so someone doesn't go crazy at Target buying things she does not need.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Bring it, thirties

Thirty is one of those birthdays that feels like it should really be commemorated. Like twenty one, only with less alcohol and slightly more self respect. It's the beginning of an era that, I'm told, is full of self assurance and stability.

Aside from my girl's trip to NYC (otherwise known as spring break 2012) I decided that it was time I start taking better care of myself. We've all seen the tanning mom on tv and I think we know that's not our end goal 20 years from now. Not that I tan, but I think we can all agree that her face has become a sad illustration of years of mistreatment.

Enter my arsenal. The products I've been using on my face to prevent evidence of prior abuse (or spring breaks, ahem) and further preventative maintenance.

There is no question I have been blessed with my mother's skin and I don't weigh this blessing lightly. My skin rarely breaks out, it's evenly toned, and my mom has often been confused for my sister (big boost for her, weird old feeling for me). That being said, I am noticing my pores getting bigger as I age and have stolen a glance or two in the mirror at some new lines popping up around my mouth and eyes.

I thought sharing what has been working well for me might be helpful for others.

1. I wash with Cetaphil twice a day. It's mild and creamy and works well. And it's cheap. And I can buy a jumbo pack at Costco that literally lasts us an entire year which thrills me to no end.

2. In the morning I use Kiehl's ultra facial moisturizer with SPF. I have mixed feelings about this product- I like that it's light and isn't scented, but I feel like I could find a comparable product for less money. It hasn't blown me away, but as a long time fan of Kiehl's products I wanted to try it. When it's gone I'll probably go back to using Avalon Organics which is wonderful and makes me smell like a delicious orange grove.

3. At night after I wash I use this Boots expert sensitive hydrating serum. I've read about the benefits of serum for a long time so I thought it was high time to try one. I love this product- the consistency is perfect. I use this all over with special attention to "problem areas." I found this at Target and was intrigued after reading about the line on Goop and it has not disappointed.

4. After the serum I use Boots expert sensitive hydrating moisturizer. Again, love this. Nice and creamy and makes my skin super soft.

5. Lastly, I bust out the big guns: Kiehl's midnight recovery eye. This is for where I see wrinkles and where I want to prevent wrinkles. A little goes a long way. Worth every dollar.

The way I see it, I only get one face. And I have to look at it every single day for the rest of my life. I might as well do what I can to preserve it! Also- and this is important- don't forget your neck! No one wants a nice young face and a saggy wrinkly neck. The end.

* Yes, I buy everything on Amazon because I am too lazy to constantly run to the store.
**I also believe that wine helps prevent skin aging and don't you dare try and tell me otherwise.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Little Bud's room

I realized, talking to my friend Meg recently, that I never showed Davis' room on the blog! Shame on me. Here is the "finished" product. It's still not totally done (is anything ever?) but it's pretty close. Matt says it's not "manly" enough to which I say hush. He's not 17 he's 7 months.

A rare moment of Davis sitting still

A cute little grey table I found at a local antique store. Basket with blocks below, basket with books above. Deer antler hooks on the wall with temporary items hanging--I can't seem to find the perfect items so the search continues.

This basket is extremely important to me. It was given to us by a couple who had never even met us when we were in the hospital. They heard about Davis from a friend and left this basket at the front desk full of monogrammed items for Davis, a few things for me, and even something for Madelyn. Just looking at this makes me cry. They even wrote "Davis" on the front and even though it's smudged I can't bring myself to fix it. Amazing people.

His dresser and changing pad opposite the window. That little yellow lion was a gift from Kristin in the hospital. I treasure it. (Pardon the humidifier- we've been a house full of stuffy noses lately)

Another baby-less view of the room.

View from the window.

Picking out a book, and a little sneak peak of Madelyn's room....

I still want a few things for the walls in Davis' room, but it's in pretty good shape right now. The most important thing to me is to keep the majority of the floor space open so that he has plenty of room to move. Have I mentioned he never.stops.moving?? ;)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Family Pics 2011 (turn the clocks back)

Back in October of 2011 (yes, I am aware it is now 2012), my good friend and A-Ma-Zing photographer Jenny came and took some family pictures for us. Our original "plan" had been to take newborn photos of Davis a week or so after his birth, but as most of you know, at that point we were in the hospital and flourescent lighting does not a good picture make. So, we waited until we got home and took advantage of the fall leaves and happy children. I am forever grateful for these images. We were so happy to be home I wouldn't have even cared if we were in sweats and it rained- I just wanted pictures of our family together in our house.

The last picture has a bible verse on it, Acts 19:11, that says "And God wrought special miracles"- and I am reminded of that every single day I get to look at these sweet faces.

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