Saturday, April 30, 2011

And now for something completely different...

Hello.  It's me - Brian.  Chrissy's a bit burnt out tonight and was asking me for ideas for her daily post.  I gave her a couple of suggestions and she decided that it would be a good night for me to take a turn at this.  So... I guess that'll teach me for offering suggestions!  This is good though, since I don't have her clever writing skills this post will just make her look good. 

My work requires that I work a half day Saturday once every 6 weeks or so, and today happened to be one of those days.  Since there's only a few people in the office on Saturdays I thought it would be a fun idea to take Jacob along with me to keep me company.  I told him about the idea last night and I was really happy to see his reaction to the idea.  He was so excited!  This morning when I suggested he put a few toys or things to play with in his backpack to bring along, he informed me that he had already put together a bag, including Legos, his Leapster, a few fruit roll-ups for himself and a cheese stick or two for me.  

He was really cute at the office.  He was very polite and friendly to my co-workers, and was very well behaved.  He pulled up a chair over next to my desk and went to work constructing various creations that he would occasionally bring over for me to see.  Whenever he wanted to talk to me he would whisper so as not to disturb any of the other workers, which was really not necessary since there were only a few in the office, but it was still appreciated.  I was very proud of him and was really happy to have his company.  On a brief bathroom break I asked him if he was bored or having any fun and he said "Dad, I think we should do this every time you have to work on Saturdays!".  I have to agree with him.  I think we just started a new tradition!

When we got done with my work, I asked Jake where he wanted to go get some lunch as a treat.  I gave some suggestions and told him he could take his pick.  He choose the Chick-fil-a near my office.  I tried subtly to convince him to go someplace a little fancier, since it was a special occasion but his mind was made up.  He told me "Dad, for me Chick-fil-a is a special treat, since I've only been there once before when Mom brought us out to go to lunch with you last summer!". It's hard to argue with that kind of logic!

So, then he and I went and got the Safety and Emissions done on my car so I could renew it, and finally made our way home.  Chrissy and the girls were busy today too.  They went out on the typical Saturday excursions including the trip to the grocery store, Costco for diapers, etc.  So the day has flown by pretty quickly, but it feels good to have accomplished a few things and it was fun to have some one on one time with Jake.  

Now the two oldest are in bed asleep and Chrissy and I are engaged in the daily task of getting the stubborn youngest one to give in and go to sleep.  Hopefully we'll succeed with enough time left over for Chrissy and I to actually watch a show together.  

So... there's my first ever post.  I don't think there's any real threat you'll have to hear from me too often, but thanks for putting up with me and I hope Chrissy enjoys the break this gave her! 

- Brian. 

Friday, April 29, 2011

I didn't... the Royal Wedding. a very good job on today's workout.

....realize that we were almost out of milk when I was at the store. that my children ate goldfish crackers for breakfast. a thing about my messy house.

....get caught up with the laundry.

....understand why my son was wearing safety goggles and Mardi gras beads when I picked him up from school. very much today but read and nap with my baby.

....get to hang out with my cousins tonight. 

....get to hang out with our friends either.

....feel very good.

....have to cook dinner thanks to my husband and his gourmet tuna fish sandwiches.

....see who moved our recycling bin to the middle of the front lawn.

....really have anything interesting to post about.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Today my sister came over in the morning to help me with my kids. Then she stayed for lunch and  we watched a couple of chick flicks. Nothing is better than a great sister, and I have one of the best!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

It just felt like a tea party kind of day...

Because sometimes you have to get your best outfit on...

and strike a fancy pose...

and eat minature food...

and drink with your pinky held up so elegantly...

and ignore the messy kitchen in favor of playing with your favorite friends.

It's kind of a girl thing.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Exhaustion... on every level.

Today has been a very loooong day.

First off it's "Hell Week" at the gym. Which basically means they take their already insanely hard work outs and crank them up to an eleven. "Eleven. Exactly. One louder." I came home spent.

This afternoon, Lila decided she'd rather fight to the death than take a nap. Until it was too late in the day for her to take a whole nap and I had to wake her up early so she was very whiny.

Tonight, because I must be a masochist on some level, I went to Zumba and worked my butt off for another hour.

I came home to the chaos that occurs as the children sense that bedtime is coming and they go bat crap crazy getting the rest of their energy out.

And just as we were getting them in bed and settled, I realized that we had reached the deadline for deciding whether or not Jake was going to take the place he's been offered in the spectrum program. So we got him back out of bed and headed out to the living room for a very long discussion about that decision. The final answer is that he is going to go, and he is not very happy about it.

Brian gave him a beautiful father's blessing to help him feel calm and know he can trust his parents to make good decisions for him. He said some wonderful things about Jacob and the special place that he holds in our family and the blessing and help that he is to us as his parents. We were all emotionally wiped out by the time it was over. But feeling better and calmer too.

So there you go, physically, mentally, emotionally, and motherly exhausted. And tomorrow I get to get up and do it all again.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Hey Mom! I got lip-sick!

Yeah, that's an easter stamp she got from her grandma. 
I have to admit to being a little impressed at how perfectly she applied her "makes up" and also a little relieved that it came off with just a baby wipe...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The dresses and the rest of the celebration...

Here they are in all their matching, fresh, springtime, pistachio and bubble gum pink glory... the Easter dresses! 

It took me four sets of sleeves on Lila's dress before I was happy with the results, but at least that meant Evie's came together in about three hours total. The big relief was that they got done and the girl's were thrilled to wear them.

And just to prove that I love my son just as much as I love my girls, I didn't make him a matching pistachio green tie embroidered with butterflies.

I did however knit each of them a teeny tiny baby bunny.

These things are literally multiplying like rabbits around here! You can't stop at just one....

After church we headed up to Brian's parents for lunch and an egg hunt with the cousins, where once again my children made out like bandits. I heard Jake yelling as he ran through the back yard, "Jackpot! This is enough candy to last me until Halloween!"

Evie got another Belle barbie doll and Lila got an Ariel one, and they all got new coloring books. This is of course on top of the copious amounts of sugar they all divvied up after. 

Then we finished up our holiday with a visit to Grandma-great's where each of my children ate an enormous piece of ice cream cake topped with sugar bunnies. Because they needed more sugar. 

I really don't mind. I think back fondly on my childhood memories of holiday gatherings and remember loving days like Easter when the normal rules went out the window and my mom said things like, "Okay, just don't complain to me if you make yourself sick from eating all that." Now I get to say that to my children, and then just smile to myself knowing the day will come when they have to learn that lesson the hard way...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Let the celebration commence...

We started our Easter celebration off with an egg hunt and dinner with Pa Dave today.

Evie showing off her loot.

Lila loved finding the eggs, which she would promptly open and spill the candy out onto the ground... oh well. 

Jake found the last egg!

Then it was into the house to find our Easter baskets... or buckets... whatever.

Lila was thrilled with the bubbles in her bucket and could hardly be persuaded to see what other treats she got!

Could that smile be any wider? 
(Belle is her favorite princess right now.)

A Mario plush that has a zipper pocket in the back for tiny treasures. Jake loves it.

That's my girl, right for the ears.

I asked Lila what her favorite thing in her Easter basket was and she replied, "Chocolate." Yup. Definitely my child.

Fine. Mom wants an obligatory we're all posing the same way picture... I'll give her one.
Can you tell he is almost eight?

Evie also got giant princess coloring pages and spent the next hour and a half happily occupied. And yes, that is all her own work. She takes great pride in staying inside the lines. (Reminds me of my brother at that age... hmmm, I wonder if I have a budding artist on my hands.)

Jake busy with his Lego set. 
It is an Atlantis themed one and came with a trident, and I couldn't help thinking, "Sheldon lives in fear of the three tined fork..."

Lila got a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse movie, Daddy got a nap, and Mommy got a good hour or so where everyone was quiet and entertained. Good job Easter Bunny!

We had a great dinner, got to webcam with Josh, Elena, Huck, Caite and Patrick in Maryland, and then had a little bowling tournament with the Kinnect. Which I won, even while taking a few turns while holding a beyond exhausted two year old. The tournament ended when I clocked Lila in the face as I was "bowling" and the night ended with a spectacular meltdown when we were mean enough to make her put on her shoes. Thanks for a fun day Pa Dave. I hope the rest of your night was quiet enough to make up for it.... 

Friday, April 22, 2011

Brain dead

When I started on this whole posting every day for a year thing someone told me, "They don't all have to be long, or good, or interesting."  Whew. Because this is all I've got for today.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

That was crap-tastic!

This morning I went downstairs to my sewing room and started cheerfully cutting and pinning and sewing Easter dresses. (I know what you are thinking, and no. Anything before the night before is not procrastinating in my world...) I whipped together the first bodice in under an hour and thought about how my post tonight would be a couple of cute pictures of the girls in their new dresses. Then I started on the sleeves. Fast forward to lunch time and I have now spent over two hours constructing fully lined petal sleeves with a contrast  piping on the edge. I make lunch, and think, "Well... at least I'll get Lila's dress done and get a start on Evie's..."  I then spent the next three hours sewing, unpicking, cutting, pinning, sewing and unpicking those same damn sleeves. Epic fail. (Okay, maybe epic is a tad dramatic. But a fail all the same.) We left to pick up Jake from school and ran to JoAnn's to get buttons for the dresses. Of course we had to go back to the house twice, once to get the fabric to match them to, and once to get my purse. I was pretty flustered by this point. After threatening my children with dire consequences if the words "can we get" came out of any of their mouths, we survived the trip to the store and rushed home where I cut out new sleeves and threw the other ones in the garbage. I sewed the arm band onto one sleeve and then conceded to the fact that my sewing karma was severely out of whack and decided to call it a day. Why am I sharing this? Two reasons: 1) Some people (cough...cough...Lynnett...) have said that I never make sewing mistakes. This is obviously not true, I just usually share the successes rather than the failures.  2) As this is literally all I did today, I really have nothing else to blog about. 

I did have another stellar parenting moment when I snapped at Evie who was coloring by me as I was sewing. She was in full magpie mode and hadn't been quiet for more than ten seconds at a time, and I had just realized that I wasn't going to win the battle of the petal sleeves. So two fails for me today. I think I am going to give her a big hug, and a piece of good chocolate from my secret stash tomorrow. I am also going to work harder to remember that if my biggest trial in the day is that my children love me so much they want to be with me all the time, I should shut up and count my blessings.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Today my mug would read: Not the world's best mom... but she tried really hard

I am sure that Lila has said something today that wasn't whiny. But I can't for the life of me remember what it was.

Oh yes, at one point she told Jake, "You need to be patient." After five or six times we figured out she meant "be quiet." So still not very nice.

I am left trembling at the thought of what she will be like at three, because so far in my experience three is so much worst than two....

I am also trying really hard to remember how frustrating the world is when you are such a little person trying to learn that you don't always get things your way.

I also have two other children who need time, attention, food and their own chance to whine at me about things.

You know it's not been a great day when it was Brian's suggestion that I get into the bath right after dinner.

I'm fairly sure he was instinctively trying to preserve his young. 

Either way I truly appreciate that man.

And he cleaned the kitchen, that's better than long stemmed roses any day of the week.

Days like today make me understand why parenting is so much better when you have a partner, and a tag-team approach.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

At least he's cultured...

Two Christmases ago Jacob got the complete Calvin and Hobbs anthology from his Grandpa Dave. There are three of these giant books each weighing over twenty five pounds. But they have been read and reread constantly. In fact, I am often to be heard scolding Jake for leaving one of the books out where it could be damaged... or do some damage, those suckers are really heavy!

One of my favorite things about this gift, aside from the hours of entertainment it has provided my son, is how Jake now has an unlimited supply of quips and comments he has memorized from it's pages. 

Like this afternoon as he passed me in the kitchen and with an insouciant wave he said, "Hi! Here I am, one of your life's greatest achievements!" I agreed with him and asked where he had heard that, knowing the answer would be Calvin and Hobbs.

The biggest giggle today though, came from his very own mind. 
I've been trying really hard to break him of a habit he has of streaking through the kitchen every time it is his turn to shower. I tell him to go downstairs and get clean pajamas and underwear, and then he showers in our bathroom upstairs. Which somehow has equated in his mind that he has to undress downstairs instead of upstairs. And once again tonight he came up the stairs in the altogether holding his clean clothes to preserve his modesty. I started to open my mouth to get after him for undressing downstairs, but before I could say anything he struck a pose and said, "Nude Ascending a Staircase."

Salvador Dali humor.... can't miss.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Random thoughts on a uneventful day...

Today I was the slowest person at the gym. Like, they started the next class before I could finish the workout, kind of slow. I am just happy that I finished and did every last rep and round of the workout.

I am really worried that I might be the last person at the gym again tomorrow... and the only one using a calculator to figure out how to decrease the barbell weights by 20% each time.  I can't do percents before seven in the morning...

Someday I hope to be able to do the 400 meter runs without sucking wind like a cart horse.

Every time we run I can't help but think, "If this was a pack being chased by a large predator situation, I would definitely be the first one eaten."

I loved coming home to find Lila and Brian snuggling in our bed, but awake and whispering and listening to the rain fall.

The only thing my kids ate today was soup and popsicles. I will be so glad when the warm weather is here to stay and the head colds are done!

I love snuggling up with a book when it is raining outside. With warm socks on.

It never ceases to amaze me how completely destroyed a kitchen can become in less than three meals.

I also struggle with understanding why my children insist on playing on the stairs instead of the giant, well-stocked playroom, and thus leave a trail of stuff on every. single. stair.

I have to admit that I love having my children home with me all day and not having to go anywhere in the rainy weather. 

It was fun playing a card game with Jacob, now that he is big enough to hold his own cards and not have to play them face up on the table.

I realized today that it is about time I teach Jacob how to play gin (the card game). 

That means I need to buy a new deck of cards. And perhaps a lock box to keep them in, and the children out.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

That's just wrong

I feel that today can best be summed up by sharing a little bit of the dinner prayer that was said by Lila.

"Dear Heavenly Father, I wanted to go to church today, but Mommy said no..."

It's not enough that I have to deal with sick kids, I'm also getting ratted out by my two year old.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Water, water everywhere...

A couple of days ago we noticed that we had a slow but steady drip of water under our bathroom sink. You know, where you don't want water to be...

 Our wonderful brother-in-law came down to look at it for us and as he touched the hose there was a pop and hot water started to spray everywhere! It is a mess and has leaked down stairs in the laundry room. Which means that the next day or so will be spent cleaning up water and everything that got wet and drying it out. But there are some good things to come out of it all. 

1) I now know where the main water shut off valve is. 

2) We know that all our water valves, other than the main one, are corroded open. Why is this a good thing? Because we now know we need to get that fixed and didn't have to find out while dealing with a busted pipe or worse. 

3) We've learned that Evie can keep a cool head during a crisis...

I've also learned it's not fun for someone with OCD to be stuck in a house with no water.

Midnight musings...

We just walked in the door from our date night. So this is Friday's post, even though technically it is now Saturday. I am too tired to be too coherent, so I will give you two musings.

1) If you are doing a strict diet where you have one day that you get to eat more... don't schedule a dentist appointment to get cavities filled on that day.

2) You'd think that by now I would know that it takes us twice as long as regular people to do anything and everything. I really have to start planning better.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Sorry ladies... he's taken.

This week has been crazy. Our life seems to flow that way. We'll go a couple of months with nothing really going on and then have 8-10 things to do in the space of a week. I have had meetings, parties and groups galore this week, sometimes more than one place to be each night. So tonight I want to take a minute to thank my husband for being such a wonderful husband and father, and letting me have the time to go and be "Chrissy" instead of "Mommy" for awhile. And he even does the dishes while I'm gone! After so much quality me time this week I am especially excited for some us time and date night tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Drifting off...

I keep doing that today...
During this mornings workout which were timed exercises... oops, rowed too far
During my shower... did I already shampoo my hair?
Doing the dishes... AHHH! I'm supposed to be picking Evie up from preschool right NOW!
After lunch...  dang it. I've knit this ribbing wrong three times now
Cooking dinner... we'll just call that chicken "blackened"
Writing this post... wait. what was I talking about?
There is obviously nothing for it but to go to bed and drift off to sleep... and hope I can get it together for tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A Lila quirk...

Do your kids ever do something that leaves you thinking, "That's just weird, man." 

Lately Lila has taken to backseat driving. As in, she sits buckled into her car seat in the back and asks, "Mom? Are we going to da wight or da left?" That's not really the weird part though. The weird part is that she HATES to turn right with a passion that most two year olds reserve for leafy green vegetables. She only ever wants me to turn left. And you can't trick her either! She knows her right from her left, and the only thing that induces a tantrum faster than a right turn is a right turn executed after being told it will be a left turn. Which leaves me torn between laughing and exasperation as she screams through her tears, "NO! Turn left! Dis NOT da left!"

That's just weird, right?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Yeah... I got nothin'

Days like these are the hardest to share, because they are just so blah. Nothing super exciting happened, nothing sad or frustrating happened. Just the day to day life that comes with a family of five. Laundry and dishes, squabbling and hugs when we make up, laughing and crying, and the ever present question "What am I going to make for dinner?" It's nothing special, and everything important. Another ordinary day in our little piece of heaven...

*Okay, one exciting thing happened. I already shared this over on facebook so sorry if you are hearing about it again. Today was a weigh-in at the gym and I have lost 20 lbs! It's a huge (if you'll forgive the pun) accomplishment for me and makes me excited for better things to come.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Saturday Night Sweethearts

We often have our friends Dinee and Tay, and their girls Libby and Addie, over for dinner and to play games or watch movies. Yesterday we let the kids run wild as the grown-ups played Mah Jong. Jake has reached the age where he really wants to be in with the grown-ups and participating in whatever game or show we have going on. After a couple of games where he was on my team I told him he could stay and watch if he was quiet. He sat down in the corner under the counter and Addie (who is very fond of laps, according to her mother) just climbed right on in his lap and snuggled up. 

Jake was thrilled that Addie picked him to be her buddy. 

So without any prompting from the grown-ups he took her into the front room and turned on a show and started settling her down because she was so tired. 
I've said it before and I'll say it again, that boy of mine can be pretty sweet when he wants to...

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Productive, in spite of the weather.

Laundry? Sorted, folded and put away. Not one piece of clothing on a floor anywhere in this house!
Dishes? Done.
Bedrooms? Clean, with beds made.
Floors? Vacuumed.
Bathrooms? Spotless!
Mommy? Exhausted but happy, and also very determined to follow a less is more approach to housework. As in "less work in more days"...

P.S. Did you know that you can burn up to 200 calories an hour cleaning? If I'd realized that I wouldn't have pushed so hard at the gym this morning...

Friday, April 8, 2011

This snow is smothering my ability to be productive!

I came home from the gym and the chiropractor's today in what can only be described as NOT SPRING! Which meant being trapped inside the house with my three bedlamites for another day. I had so much that needs to be done, dishes, laundry, putting away said laundry.... and I just did not want to do any of it! So I didn't. I let the children turn on Tangled for the 47th time this week and I curled up in bed with a book. And I don't regret it either. Tomorrow I will take on the piles and stacks and bags and clutter that my house has filled up with over the week, tonight I am going to put my children to bed and enjoy some time relaxing with my husband. Unless of course it snows again, then I may just crawl back into bed with another book until spring finally decides to show up...

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Backwards Kid strikes again....

We had a crazy morning today. I hurt my shoulder yesterday and so was very slow and trying to do everything left handed. Jake stepped up and was my right hand man, literally. He was so sweet and with such a cheerful attitude went about trying to do as much as he could to help me. He even got Lila dressed for the day. (Although we did have to have a second take at matching the shirt...) He even picked out the hair bow and stuck it in the ponytail that was left over from yesterday.
Pretty great job right?

I guess I should have seen this coming...

It was Jake after all.

I'm still trying to figure out how he even got it on backwards while she was laying down...

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Even good days can go downhill...

Today started out great. The kids woke up in great moods and Jake made them all a delicious breakfast of toaster waffles. (I seriously think that might have been the highlight of the day for Evie...) 
Then we all got ready and went to see the movie Hop with Aunt Caite. Even more exciting as we were pulling in the parking lot Emilie and her kids pulled up next to us! Jake was so busy hanging out with Karaia and Beckham he didn't even talk to me again until we left the theater. Lila on the other hand, decided after the second trailer that she had had enough movie fun and was ready to go home. Fortunately I came prepared with m&m's for just such an occasion.

On the way home Jake started with the teasing. I don't know what his deal is lately with teasing his sisters, but I am about ready to rip my hair out! When he started to pretend he had a gun and was going to shoot Evie I intervened by saying, "Jacob. Was that an appropriate or inappropriate thing to say?" He asked, "Do you mean in the metaphysical sense?" I just managed not to laugh and still sound stern as I responded, "No. In the literal sense."  It is so hard not to just crack up at the most inappropriate times...

As I was making dinner Evie was sitting at the counter coloring and jabbering away a mile a minute. She was not happy that Lila was trying to join her and she must have seen that I wasn't too pleased with how she was treating her little sister. Before I could even say anything to her she said, "I'm not being bossy, I'm just telling her what I want her to do." 
I'm thinking of having that made into a tee shirt for her....

But the hands down winner for naughtiest child tonight goes to Lila. And as the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words...

Don't believe that pouty lip for a minute.

As I snapped the picture she was whispering, "Dat's not too much toof-paste, dat's just a little bit..."


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

For those who are about to rock, we salute you!

Aunt Caite came over to hang out with us this afternoon and after watching a movie we ended up dancing to the music on the credits.... like ya do. (Oh come on, we can't be the only ones who do this.) And we were having so much fun that we turned Pandora on the TV, broke out the wooden spoons and rocked the house!

Evie loves to preform! She is a great singer. 

"I need you now"

"Take me baby, or leave me"

Don't they make such a cute girl group?

Aunt Caite demonstrating the fine art of emoting...

Jake wailing away on the guitar solo.

So then we all took a turn.

Showing the kids that this mom can still rock it!

I still get out done by Aunt Caite...


I am too old to really pull this off...

And Evie is just too darn cute.

The best part of the whole thing was when I was attempting to teach Jake a quick step. After a few minutes he felt like he had the steps down and then tried to get all fancy and dip me. As I got back up off the floor he got that analytical look on his face and said, "Hmmm, maybe we should try that again when you lose a little more weight." 

Ouch! I think he needs to be a little taller too. Good thing that both of us are growing in the right direction... 

Monday, April 4, 2011

A little about me; a little about you?

I was feeling very at a loss for something to post about tonight, it was just one of those ordinary-everyday-Mommy-is-about-to-become-a-four-letter-word-if-I-hear-it-again kind of days. I came across this idea on another blog and totally swiped it, so thanks for the inspiration!
Making : A second grey sweater vest
Cooking : Chicken and steamed veggies
Drinking :
 Ice water, lots and lots of ice water

The Spirit Lens 

To go on vacation...

For something to post about... wait, check!

The Glee version of Firework by Katy Perry
All my cleaning time with knitting, but I don't really consider that a waste...

Easter dresses

I could have some chocolate

My husband's general awesomeness, and his specific kindness of doing the dishes...

 For all the children to go to sleep so I can have a bath without visitors
Liking: Having time to play with my children during spring break

How many hours are left during spring break?

The mini popsicles specially formulated to be slower melting that I got for my girls

That the sun comes out and lets us get some much needed vitamin D

Marveling: At Lila's attitude, that girl won't take no crap off no one! EVER!
Needing: The motivation to do some serious spring cleaning
Fabric softener. I love doing laundry and just sticking my nose into the clean clothes and breathing deep...

Reindeer pajama pants with cute bows at the ankles and a long sleeved white tee shirt

The trail of destruction that follows a two year old

That new pajama pants are probably going to be upgraded to necessity in the near future, for both me and Brian

That I need to go to bed earlier tonight

That I probably won't

Bookmarking: More lace work socks on Ravelry that I won't ever get around to knitting
Opening: The freezer for more ice
Giggling: About Jacob telling me he is "so depressed" because he is running out of teeth (he lost another one Saturday night) 
Feeling: Hungry! Only 5 weeks and 6 days to go... right?

So the you part? If you need some inspiration for a post feel free to copy. Then leave me a comment so I can come read yours too. :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Farewell, but not forever...

Freaked you out a little? No I am not stopping on my cool blogging streak, the farewell is to my good friend chocolate. Tomorrow I am starting a challenge at the gym and part of it is going back on the crazy diet. I am not terrified like I was last time, because I've done it once and survived, so that's good. And I had a lot of success with it, so I have high hopes for this time around. In fact I even had to go buy new pants again this weekend, which is great motivation to keep going! But I will admit that tonight all I can think about is how hard that second day is and how much I crave the chocolate when I can't have it....  Excuse me, I had to wipe the drool off my keyboard there.

Okay, so I need to work on staying focused on how much better I feel and the positive changes I am seeing, instead of feeling deprived.
1) For instance, I was in the bath the other day and happened to glance down at my leg. I looked again and thought, "What is that?! What is wrong with my leg?" So I looked at my other leg and realized that it was just my calf muscle. You can actually see them now. I have definition! I was equally proud and relieved that I didn't have some sort of strange growth on my leg.
2) Another positive, I was just realizing this weekend that I haven't had heartburn in months now! I had been popping Tums on a regular basis since I was pregnant with Lila, but not once since I've started eating better and working out.
3) What I want my next NSV (non-scale victory) to be, I have only a few pounds to go until the weight on my driver's licence is no longer a lie! It will be nice to no longer have that one on my conscience.

So cheer me on my friends, I will need it as I adjust back to living on chicken and steamed veggies for the next six weeks...

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A spoonful of sugar is right!

I decided this year that our children are old enough to play conference bingo. (I don't know who the person was who first thought up this idea, but she was a genius!) Simple enough concept, a bingo card filled with words that might be said during the talks, a handful of buttons or beans for markers, and a big old bowl of fun sized candies perfect for bribing small children to listen quietly for two whole hours!

This was a tradition for my family when I was growing up, and it taught me many things. First that even small children are capable of sitting quietly if there is a promise of sugar at the end of it. Second, natural consequences: I remember that my parents never forced us to sit and listen to conference, but a child who sat through all four sessions would probably have a large amount of candy and a child who listened to a talk or two and then went out to play would only have a few pieces. This wasn't done with guilt or meanness, just a clearly stated rule that the candy was only given out for a bingo. Third, I started to really look forward to conference. As a child it was mostly for the game and the candy, but as I got older I realized the wonderful messages and spirit of the weekend were an even "sweeter" reward. 

I am sure somebody reading this will probably get up on their high horse and think it is a horrible thing to "bribe" my children into doing something they should be doing for righteousness sake. To them I say, "Okay." Today was the first time in years that I was able to listen to a whole session of conference without threats, tears or tantrums, and have my children in the room at the same time.  And they were listening, really listening. Sure, right now it might be for the candy, but they will hear the messages and lessons and those will linger long after the chocolate is all gone. 

Case in point, during a talk on repentance my seven year old looked very contemplative. Afterwards he asked me, "Mom? If somebody did a bunch of bad stuff during the first part of the year, and then they got baptized during the middle of the year, how would that affect their standing with Santa?" So, obviously we have some more learning to do, but at least he's got the basic concept down...