Just another manic Monday

I would personally like to thank a friend of mine who got this song stuck in my head! But it is rather fitting for the day.

I am wired and ready to go today, which is a good thing because there's lots to do. Even more than my original list thanks to the little boy in the other room playing with Play Dough. I finally got the Snuggle Bug stuff out of the house - yay!! Now I have to get to work on putting the dining room back together. We can't start preschool until it's organized.

I finally finished my day planner for the school year. I am a co-leader for Paige's Brownie troop. Our meeting were supposed to be Thursday nights, but I was waiting to hear from soccer coaches to confirm that Thursday are good. I didn't want to write in all the Brownie stuff only to find out that the days would have to change. Doesn't it figure that Mike's coach called last night to say that his practice starts tonight. Nothing like the last minute!!! I suppose I should add "dig out the soccer stuff" to my list.

I'm also waiting for the landlord to return with a new lock for the front door. Hence the time killing blogging! Oh, we can lock the door, so don't worry, the house is safe. The problem is, we can't get back in. That might be a little problem!

I guess I should get back to tackling my to-do list. I should probably get lunch ready as well. I've learned that little people turn into spawns of the devil when they don't eat. And Mike just stuck a duck in his mouth. He should know better, but maybe he's just that hungry!

Until next time.....

It's What I Do Best!!


I'm pretty sure if you look that word up in the dictionary, my picture would be there. I have a mountain of stuff just chillin in my dining room. Let me back up and explain....

Twice a year there's a HUGE children's resale event by me. This sale is just awesome because
1. I can get rid of all my kids' old stuff
2. I can buy "new" stuff for them without spending an arm and a leg
3. I make money out of the whole thing

Of course #3 is my favorite on that list! =) I think I finally have a system down. I have to separate the clothes by gender, then by size. I tag everything and number it as I enter it online. If I get everything entered by a certain date, then I can pick up my price labels and slap them on the tags early. So come drop-off day, all I need to do is unload and put things where they belong in the store.

While having a system is great, there are also some cons to it. Thinking that it wouldn't take as long to prep everything because I had said system, I waited until the last minute. And now I'm scrambling!!!! Oh, and did I forget to mention the toys? I had to clean them, which was hard enough. Have you ever really looked at how many little nooks and crannies are in your kid's toys?!? Then I had to figure out a way to attach the darn tags! And if I'm selling the Little People Zoo then of course I need to also sell the extra animals that we had for it. Which means I then had to figure out how to securely attach that bag to the original toy and still be able to see the price tag. This didn't seem so hard when I started last night. 2 hours later and no where near the bottom of the pile, I had a different opinion.

I've had 2 months to do all this stuff. That's plenty of time you say. That's what I thought. Until I realized the deadline to enter everything online so I could get my labels early was only a week away and I had barely started!

So now I sit here and blog when what I really need to do is finish the last pile of clothes. Thank goodness I'm on my last pile of clothes because tomorrow is drop-off day!!!

Really, I swear I'm going to work. I'm done spell checking and proof-reading. I'm ready to publish....wait....I think I need a snack....

2nd grade

It's finally here! The first day of school!

I have friends who have been counting down the days all summer. Not me! This was my first summer as a stay at home mom and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Until last weekend! Mike knew that a big change was coming and he doesn't always deal well with change. Needless to say, he was a little out of sorts (BIG understatement there!!). The fighting got worse and the messes got bigger. It was time for Paige to go back and have someone else deal with her for a change. I love my daughter more than anything, don't get me wrong, but it was time!

She was so excited this morning to put on some new clothes. I'd post a picture but dummy me forgot the camera....again!

The nerves kicked in, but when she saw her friends, the excitement returned. I was excited as well to see her off to school, but when she walked into the school without me, I think I felt a tear coming.

So now I'm left at home with just a 4 year old. It is so much quieter here now and I might actually start to get stuff done. Of course no sooner do I say this when he decides to be my shadow. Ugh! I also am left to deal with his little quirks. Here's one for you......

He just asked for some "milk and chocolate milk" (he doesn't seem to get that the chocolate is syrup and not milk) and I spilled some milk. Little Mr. Clean freaked out and ran for a towel. And let me just state because I have gotten some heat for this, there is nothing wrong with a child who likes to clean! Sometimes I like to have a little helper. Of course it has to be on his terms and not mine. Heaven forbid you ask Mike to clean something! It won't get done.

All Board!!!

The train keeps a-rollin'


Bringing up the rear

I'd like to apologize because I apparently lied in my last post. There is more than 1 cheap toy I like and that's a box =)

Gotta love cheap toys!

What I've learned over the years is that cheap toys are great for parents because it saves us some money. But in the end, you should have spent a little extra and got a better one because the cheap crap always breaks!

Well this time the kids really do have a cheap toy that I love. Paige has always wanted one of those sticks with a horse's head to ride on. I guess she got tired of asking every time we came across one so she made her own. She found a huge stick in the backyard. I gave her one of the many socks I have that doesn't have a mate, and she used the bottom of 2 of those little plastic containers that hold toys from the quarter machines at the grocery store. Here is her brother riding her creation named Princess.......

Ok, so I admit it's not the prettiest thing in the world. In fact, I think it's rather creepy. But it gives the kids hours of entertainment, which means they're out of my hair for a while!

Oh, and listening to Paige scream at Mike for "riding her princess" followed by looks from the neighbors is just priceless!

Pick up the Pace

This was the saying for the day for a few reasons. A friend of mine has pancreatic cancer. This morning a group of us participated in the Pick up the Pace walk for cancer. I can't even tell you how many times we said this to Mike when walking to the walk location and then again during our walk. I had decided to do the 1 mile walk because I didn't think the kids, or at least Mike, would be able to walk much more than that. Especially in the sweltering heat! Another participant decided to return with me and we also took my friend's daughter with us. We hung out at the park while the rest of our group walked the 3 mile walk, which they all swore was more than 3 miles.

Heading down to the walk site, we said to Mike many times that he needed to "pick up the pace", not realizing at first that that was also the name of this walk. But he has little legs and it was hot, so can you really blame him for being slower than us taller people? This saying is also important for another reason. We learned afterwards that the EMS were not present and during the walk, especially for the longer distance, there were no water stations. Other walks I have been to there have been tables with cups of water and medical personnel present. There were a lot of older people there. What if someone had passed out from the heat on the trail?

I got to thinking later on in the day that there doesn't seem to be much awareness for pancreatic can
cer. It is a horrible disease and the survival rate is not high. Most people do not know that have this cancer until it is too late. I think that we need to make others aware of this horrible disease. Hopefully researchers can do more research to find a way to detect this in people earlier and find a way to treat it and increase the survival rate. That is the main reason for this entry. I want to help spread awareness. I want my friend who is battling for her life to win that battle and I want the people after her who are diagnosed to have a better chance to win their fight.
If you read this, please click on the link on the side of my page. It will take you to the Pancan site where you can learn more and learn how to spread the word and help others.

All you need is love

Reading another blog that I follow got me thinking about my life up to this point. As a child and as we continue to grow, we all have hopes and dreams and things we want to do. Like most people, I had milestones that I wanted to reach by the time I was 30. I wanted to be married, have kids, a career, and a house. Have I accomplished these things? For the most part I have.

I am married to the greatest man ever. At least I think so =). We have 2 beautiful children, which you already know about if you read this blog. Now, as for a career, I guess it depends on how you look at it. Originally I wanted to be a teacher and that is what I went to school for. I pictured my life as a successful teacher with my own kids at home, a husband, maybe a dog, and we all lived in a great house with a yard, a picket fence, the works. When I had Paige, I decided to stay home with her and I did for 16 months. It just got to the point where we needed the money and I had to work. There were bad days, like any other job, but for the most part, I enjoyed what I did. And then I had my last job. It started out great, but a year or so after I had Mike, it went downhill and fast! The opportunity presented itself for me to once again be a stay at home mom.

In my eyes, staying home with my children is a career. A career that I wouldn't give up for the world! I think sometimes you have to be in my position to really understand why I feel it's a career. While I may not be paid with money, there are so many other more important rewards.

And for the house...no we do not live in the house of our dreams. Far from it! But we are working on it and hopefully soon we will be able to improve our living quarters. But really, all this boils down to one simple thing....all you need is love. We have a roof over our heads. It may not be a great roof so to speak, but there are too many other people in this world that have nothing over their heads. We have food on our plates everyday. We may not have all the material possessions we would like, but who does? The basics are covered.

Love makes the world go round and love will keep us together. And together we will one day reach our goals. All you need is love!

Are you ready for some football!!!

It's that time of year again, thank goodness. I say that because hockey is over and who cares about baseball. I was starting to go through sports withdrawal!! As you can see, I'm not the only one exited about the Steelers. He is so excited to wear his new jersey and I don't feel like a dork now when he wears it. His last one was #7. That's the same one Paige and I have. Even Paige's pink jersey is Big Ben! Now we just have to get Chris a Polamalu jersey. The girls will match and the boys will match. LOL!!

It's funny because as I type this, Mike is talking about football season being over. All throughout the hockey season he kept insisting on watching football instead. Thank goodness for the NFL network! And now that football is here, he wants hockey. But that's Mike for you - always wanting what he can't have. Guess I'll have to turn on the NHL network for him.

Before I go, here's some more little fans for you....

This would be Mike watching Paige properly use her Terrible Towel. Mike thought it was a carpet that needed vacuumed. Let me tell you, Paige yelled at him. We do NOT disrespect the towel like that. The Titans can attest to that!

And here's Mike looking like the crazy fan he is!

One of these things is not like the others (I love Sesame Street)....

Back to school

Yep, it's almost that time of year again. GG goes back on the 26th. And can you believe she'll be in 2nd grade?!? That boggles my mind! Next week we can go up to the school and find out who her teacher will be and who will be in her class. She gets a long with most kids, but I really hope some of her closest friends are in her class. As for the 2nd grade teachers, I've heard good and bad about both of them. We'll deal with it when the time comes. GG is a good student anyway, so I'm not worried.

To prepare for school, we did some shopping today. It's awesome that the PTA provides supplies. All we need is a bookbag and lunchbox, which we still have from last year, and clothes. Grandma wanted to go out today to buy GG some clothes. I have told her that she can pick what she wants. Obviously her choices have to be within reason. In other words, no mini skirts and hooker boots.

So we get to Kohl's and GG starts pointing out the shirts with guitars or the one pink shirt that came with a black vest covered in skulls. I guess I was the only one to find that amusing.

Needless to say, Grandma did not get those shirts. We just have different ways of thinking, and that's fine. Maybe I'll go out another day and get my rockin rebel some skulls - ha ha!!!

All the pretty pictures in this entry will be in honor of GG. Rock on!!!

Bob the Builder and stuff

What a crazy weekend! It all started Friday morning. Our Children's Museum has travelling exhibits and this time it's Bob the Builder. Now if you know Mike, you know it was a must that we go. On Fridays and Sundays you could actually meet Bob. Sundays are difficult because we go to Grandma and Pap's and Fridays have been difficult lately. Something always came up!

Well, this Friday we finally made it. We got there when it opened to avoid any parking lot fiascoes like last time (we couldn't get in and there were open spots!). We visited all the rooms, played with all the toys, and met Bob. Mike's face lit up like a Christmas tree! I am so mad that I forgot the camera (again), but believe me he was extremely excited. The museum is halfway between our house and where Chris works so I figured we'd stay there until it was time to get him from work. That was a long day!!!

Friday night was the end of the summer reading party at the library. Paige won a chance to make her own puppet with the puppeteer before the party. There were extra supplies so Mike was able to make one as well. During the party, there was a puppet show, games, prizes, face painting, and Rita's (Italian ice for those who may not know about that place).
Wow did the kids sleep well that night!

Saturday we went to lunch with friends to a German restaurant, HofbrÀuhaus, and it was awesome! We all ate too much food, but it was worth it! After that we went to buy Mike's soccer stuff. He is finally old enough to play. I'm so happy bout that because he is so excited to do something that his sister does, but it's also sad because it means my baby is growing up. The bonus is we got free soccer socks out of it! Dicks has a package deal where you can get the ball, shoes, and shin guards for $35. An employee told me the socks were included and when I explained this to the cashier, she had to give them to me as part of the deal. Sweet!

Today is finally Sunday. I'm not excited about the weekend being over, but there's nothing I can do about that. Altho today is what I call the first official day of summer. The temperature was in the 90s today. There have been maybe 3 days where it hit 80 or above in the past month, so it feels pretty hot. Thank goodness Paige has AC in her room. It also helps to cool off our room. I hate sleeping when it's hot!

Now it's officially bedtime for the kiddos so until next time, bye-bye!

PS. I don't let the kids get their faces painted because Paige broke out one time, but they got their arms done, and that's what the pictures in this entry are.

Stop and smell the roses

It's been a rough day for me. Here I am worrying about trivial things when, BAM! Smacked in the face with devastating news. What was I worried about? Well, I'll tell you. Mike went to the doctor the other day for his 4 year check-up. I had a few questions about his behavior - a week or so ago I didn't think he would make it to 4! Anyway, the doctor said he's a boy and it's just the age. Fine, whatever, he's probably right. So I asked for advice on discipline. Time-outs are good (1 minute per year the child is), taking away privileges, rewarding good behavior. Well I do these things! Short of beating him, many times nothing gets through to him. By the way, no I don't beat my kids. The doctor also asked about preschool. We're doing it at home. Apparently that was not the correct answer, but guess what? That's what we're doing!

So anyway, back to why I need to stop worrying about these trivial things and start embracing the little things. A friend of mine was diagnosed with cancer last year. She had gone through chemo and radiation and was very positive about the whole thing. It wasn't spreading and the treatments seemed to be working. Well, she recently went in for a scan and her doctors realized that the cancer had spread. Yes, there is a new experimental procedure they could try which may give her a little more time. But if that doesn't work, she probably has another year.

I am having such a hard time dealing with this. One of my biggest fears is to leave this earth before my children are grown. I want to be there while they grow and become adults and have families of their own. My friend will probably not get a chance to see her daughters grow into adults. I know that some treatments work wonders and cancer patients can go on living a wonderful life for a long time. While this is what I hope for her, what she has is one of the ugliest and hardest cancers to treat.

Other friends are talking about doing a walk in her name, fundraisers, and giving her and her family little things to help them enjoy what time she has. I am all over this and want to help as much as I can. But at the same time, there's only so much I can do. I can't cure her, I can't make this process any easier, and I absolutely hate that feeling of helplessness.

Devastating things like this are reminders to hug your loved ones, call a friend you haven't talked to in a while, and always stop to smell the roses.

Anyone who reads this, please keep this woman and her family in your thoughts and prayers. They need all the good vibes they can get.

Non-domestic Goddess

Yep, the title says it all! Housework is not my thing. I'm not saying I never do it. I do not like complete chaos, but I am definitely not Martha Stewart! I will admit that I vacuum at least once a day. And I do this for 2 reasons...
1. I have 2 (sometimes 3) messy children who leave a trail when they eat anything!
2. The youngest of the group loves to vacuum! Strange, but true!

I have no problems with the house not being perfect. I mean, everyone is fed and happy. What else can I ask for? It's when i get attacked that I freak out. For example, today I decided to Wii Fit. It's been a while and that was not a cheap gift, so I might as well use it. Well, I turned it on and realized that I did NOT want to play Pajama Sam. That's one of Paige's games, but the sad thing is even I can't figure the darn thing out!

Anyway, I went to take out her game and put mine in when I was overcome. Yep, those pesty dust bunnies came out of hiding and attacked! I swear I just got them under control. Those buggers are quick!

And they like to gang up with the gnomes. You know who they are, right? They're the sneaky scoundrels who like to take your stuff and hide it. Ya, they're here all the time.

I'm hooked!!!

So a few months ago I decided to take up a new hobby - crochet. Well, I am hooked! No pun intended. Well, maybe a little pun =). Anyway, it took a few tries and some youtube videos for me to really understand what to do. The first project I decided to do was easy, or so I thought. Let's just say I started it in April and it's still not done. Sorry I can't go into further detail, but I can't give away what it is. It's a surprise for someone who I know reads this.

When I felt I needed a break from that project (I guess it was a lot of breaks or else it would be finished by now), I worked on a few other things for the kids. I discovered it's a lot of fun to make animals. Then I heard some exciting news in my family and said, hey, I can make something for that, too!! So, yes, the original project was put on the back burner...again. Well, the exciting news on my end is that I have finished this 2nd big project, which would make it the 1st big thing I have completed. Yay me!!!! Sorry, but again I cannot explain what this one is either because like the 1st, it's also a gift. I'm sure at some point I will reveal everything.

Now the problem is, what to do with this new hobby once my big projects are out of the way. Hmmm...any ideas? I do take requests =)

Happy birthday!!

So, Little Dude is 4 years old now. Time sure does fly! As you can see, Steelers was the theme for the party this year. I was so excited that he didn't choose a construction theme for the 3rd year in a row! And I even found football ice cream. How cool is that?!?

As excited as we are to celebrate another birthday, it's also a sad time for me. It seems like only yesterday he was born. And pulling out pictures from then is certainly not helping my current state of emotions. With GG, it wasn't nearly as emotional. The year she turned 4 was the year Little Dude was born. It was hard seeing her growing up, but there was also another baby in the house to experience those early years with again. Now there is no other baby in the house. I do not miss the late night feedings or all the diapers. It's also a lot easier to travel now. Instead of packing a huge diaper bag, all we need is a change of clothes. While I don't miss the things that come with a baby, I miss being able to take care of another person.

Little Dude is now at the age of independence. I think it's also safe to say he is potty trained (day and night). It gives me a great sense of pride to know that we did a good job in shaping this little boy into an independent person and I am looking forward to teaching him new things and watching him continue to grow. And this is not all about Little Dude. GG continues to grow every day and has a love for learning. We are also proud to be a part of her continued growth!

It's just very emotional for me to grasp to concept that the baby days are done. We have agreed to not have anymore kids, and I swear I am fine with that. But from a biological standpoint, it is a woman's job to have babies. Being pregnant is an experience that only a woman can have and unless you've been there, you cannot understand the emotions that go along with it. So as much as I loved being pregnant, I have to look at this rationally. We are (I am) happy as a family of 4. It takes a lot of work (and money) to have a baby and I do not think I want to go through that again.

So before I ramble on more than I already have, I am very happy to have 2 wonderful children. I would not change a thing and I am looking forward to watching my children grow and be a part of it. But I also miss the old days.

Happy birthday, Little Dude. And here's to many more!