Monday, March 29, 2010

You know you're tired when ...

... you fall fast asleep with your knees in the air and your sister's toy cube on your chest.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


This week a lot of memorable things happened. And I totally forgot my camera every time. DUH!

Fun thing #1: On Wednesday night, I went to the Bon Jovi concert in Philly with my friend Kathy!!! Yes! ME!

The concert was GREAT and we had a really fun time! It was just what I needed. I have been feeling ... well - OLD and boring and stifled lately. Am I allowed to say that? Yes, I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE being Mommy to my kids and staying home with them, but sometimes I do feel like I have no time for any of my own interests and sometimes it feels like I've forgotten who I am underneath all the Mommy business. I know it sounds silly, but being out at a concert and enjoying the music and remembering what I was like back when Bon Jovi first become a household name just felt like a breath of fresh air to me.

And I don't have a single picture. But I do have the memories. :)

And since I have been listening to my Bon Jovi CD in the car, Audrey now gets in the car and loudly shouts from her WAY back seat "Can we hear 'Shot through the heart'?" Oh, I just cringe and send up a silent prayer that she does NOT go to school and start talking about her mom's "shot through the heart" song.... maybe I should play "Livin' on a Prayer" instead?

Fun Thing #2 - Today the kids went to our church's annual Easter Egg Hunt -- there was face painting, crafts, snacks, moonbounces, pictures with the Easter Bunny ... and of course the egg hunt. It was a little chilly but everyone had fun, although Carter wanted nothing to do with that Easter Bunny! I even ran into the kids' pediatrician there with her kids. It felt a little bit like running into your teacher at the grocery store as a child. :)

Again - no pictures. However, we did get our picture taken with the Easter Bunny - complete with Audrey scowling because she thinks she's too old for the Easter Bunny, Carter clinging onto me like static and crying, and Chloe pulling Audrey's hair - should be an interesting picture. As the photographer said - "The picture will tell a story!!" :)

Fun thing #3 - Chloe started saying MAMA! Okay, she doesn't say it with a lot of intentionality, but she sure is getting a lot of positive reinforcement every time she says it!!

I've tried to get this on video ... but no luck so far.

This next week Audrey has spring break. I thought I would be dreading a long week at home with all 3 kids, but I am actually looking forward to it. No school means a lot more flexibility for us to go out and do things. So I have plans for the library, a trip to Mom-Mom's house, a playdate or two, and late next week we are surprising the kids with a little overnight trip! SSSHH!! I am so excited - they are going to LOVE IT!

Even better? It is supposed to be in the high 70's/low 80's at the end of the week!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Little Inchworm

Chloe is a girl on the move these days. More and more often, when I leave the room and come back, I can't find her right away ... she has usually crawled herself inchworm-style into a corner and is into some kind of "mischief" (aka trying to eat cords or paper). Needless to say we have put up the gate at the top of the stairs and are attempting to "babyproof" ... not so easy when you have 2 other kids who like to play with marbles and don't usually remember to pick them up when they are through. Ugh.

Anyhow, it is quite amusing to watch where Chloe tries to go. She manages to get herself into some tight spaces when she is determined ... which she often is.

This morning she crawled herself under her activity table. I thought I'd snap a picture ... and ended up documenting her whole little adventure.

Look at me!

Hmm, this looks interesting ... will it fit in my mouth?

Now ... how do I get out of here?

Uh-oh, I think I'm stuck!

I AM stuck!! WAAAH!

Why don't you get that camera out of my face and help me!

Well .... maybe I'm not so stuck after all...

Hey, I figured that out all by myself !

Now what else can I get into?

Align CenterLeaving that activity table in the dust ... now what I can eat off the kitchen floor?

Watch out world, here she comes!
Right at ankle level ... :)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

First day of spring

March 21st. When you live in the northern half of the US, you never do know quite what the weather will be like in March. I was born in March, and one year there might be a blizzard on my birthday, and the next year, it may be 70 degrees out. I have a very distinct memory of the weather on one of my birthdays. Chad and I were dating, and we went downtown to Chicago, ate a really nice dinner at the Chicago Chophouse, and we were walking around the lakefront with no coats. In Chicago! (This is probably a particularly distinct and sweet memory to me since we were young and in love and walking hand in hand through Chicago and everything was right with the world ... heck, it could've been 30 degrees out but I probably wouldn't have noticed ...) Anyhow, I digress.

All that to say - the first day of spring around here is usually met with rain and chilly temperatures.

But not this year! After living through over 70 inches of snow this past winter, needless to say we were all thrilled that the first day of spring brought with it 72 degree temperatures! So of course we spent a lot of time outside this weekend.

Chad did a lot of yard work - cleaning out the flower beds, trimming bushes, and preparing the vegetable garden.

Our little strawberry patch is starting to look green again.

The daffodils even decided to grace us with their lovely presence.

All the yuck from our flower beds after the long winter.

Chad gave the kids rides on the tarp after ditching the garden waste.

Carter has been playing round after round of baseball. (And could a father be more thrilled about this than Chad is? I think not.)

Audrey and Carter made a lot of mud pies ... and cakes, and puddings.
And I will be doing a lot of laundry.

Audrey and I pushed Chloe around the block.

Taking it all in.

All this fresh air is making someone a little tired. :)

We just ended the weekend with some wiffleball and ice cream at our friends' house.

Welcome Spring!
And PS: Please don't leave us. :)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

8 months old

Well, well, well. Here we are again. This month has simply flown right by. It's amazing what springlike weather and being healthy (and having healthy kids) does for one's spirits! I am feeling like a new person these days!

News Flash: Chloe-girl is continuing to grow up. (No big surprise, huh?)

Here are a few recent developments. :)

The biggest one is probably that Chloe is definitely on the move these days. She is not crawling on hands and knees yet, but she is pulling herself all over the place like a little army gal. Audrey has taken it upon herself to give her crawling lessons ... which basically involves throwing forbidden items just out of reach and then cheering Chloe on to go get them. So cute to see my girls bonding.

All this crawling around at this age is a bit of uncharted territory for me. Audrey didn't crawl at all until she was 10 months old, and Carter (always marching to the beat of his own drum) never did crawl. He just rolled until he walked! So I am having to be extra vigilant!

Chewing, chewing and more chewing...

Probably because her 4 top teeth were coming through .... all at once.
Needless to say, sleeping has been messed up again. It is starting to get back to normal again now that they have all broken through. Thank goodness!

Having more teeth has made eating puffs a new favorite activity.

One of my favorite things about Chloe getting bigger?

The older 2 kids can really interact with Chloe. I love, love, love seeing the kids having fun together and loving on each other!! (Although now that she is getting around there is a lot more yanking things out of her hands and trying to keep her from chewing on the board game while they are playing!)

Hanging with her big bro.
Sometimes while Chloe is napping, Carter will stop what he is doing and say "Mommy, I have to find Chloe!" He actually misses her.
So far Carter is absolutely so loving toward Chloe. I know the day will come where he punches her in the arm and slams the door to his room in her face. But ... I am hoping that he always looks out for and protects his baby sister.

I also love this picture of all 3 kids in their jammies with their heads together, playing matchboxes.

Here's hoping for many more years of fun together.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

I fought the law and the law won

Okay, here is the promised blog post about the speeding ticket.

Obviously, I did not "fight the law" ... although the officer who pulled me over did think I was pulling an O.J. Simpson - a la the infamous white bronco chase.

Picture this.

Busy mother is given the opportunity to go do some personal clothes shopping. Alone. No kids. No snacks or diapers or strollers to bring along. The freedom to try on clothes without attempting to keep children from crawling or peeking under the neighboring dressing room. Hasn't been shopping alone for clothes since ... well, I can't remember how long.

I take off in Chad's Honda Accord. No minivan, just me and the sporty coupe. I decide to take the back roads instead of 422 to get to Kohl's. It's a beautiful, sunny day after weeks on end of snow and freezing temps. I head north out of Phoenixville on 113, out into the country. The music is turned up and I am singing at the top of my lungs... Because for once I am listening to something that is not kiddie music! (Actually I think it is funny that I am listening to Christian praise music when I have a brush with the law ...). I was totally in my own little world. (I actually even remember that I was thinking about some friends of mine).

Anyhow, at some point I glance up in the rearview mirror and see flashing lights, so I slowly pull over and think - Hmm, I must have been driving too fast. Little did I know that the officer has been following me with his siren AND flashing lights for the last mile or so. Oops. When he comes to the window he is SERIOUSLY p.o.'ed at me. He didn't yell at me but let's just say that he was pretty darn "stern".

I honestly was totally confused at why he was so angry until he barks out "Did you really not hear my siren this whole time?"

Me: "What? How long have you been following me?"

Him: (Loudly) "Since Fillmore Street back there. I know you saw me. You were probably thinking 'Oh, $%#@*!' "

Me: "Officer, I am really sorry. I honestly didn't hear or see you. I guess I was listening to my music pretty loud."

Him: "Have you had any traffic violations in the past year?"

Me: "No."

Him: "Not ANY?" (did he not believe this? was my infraction really THAT bad?? I seriously have not had a ticket since my early 20's, and it's safe to say I am no longer anywhere near my early 20's.)

Me: "No."

Him: "License, registration and proof of insurance."

Me, as I am getting it out: "I am really so sorry. I really was not trying to ignore you."

He gives me a once over and heads back to his car.

At this point, I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Part of me wanted to cry because I had messed up my 'perfect' day out. And it makes me so uncomfortable when someone is angry with me (and having a police officer mad at you is kinda scary). I wondered what Chad was going to think, but I figured he would be cool about it. I was only going 40 in a 25, and it was truly a mistake. Have you ever tried to go 25 on a country road? It pretty much feels impossible.

But the bigger part of me was just cracking up inside, because I was picturing the headlines that could be written: "Harried mother of 3 arrested for attempting to elude police custody while running away from home ..."

I also was determined that my day was not going to be ruined.

So. When the officer came back to my window his demeanor had totally changed. I'm not sure why, except that perhaps as he looked up my info and ran my license through the system and gave it all a little thought, he realized I really don't fit the description of someone trying to outrun law enforcement. Also I think it's because it never pays to cop an attitude with a cop, and I almost fell on my face apologizing (and out of sheer embarrassment, truth be told!) By the end, he was actually almost making excuses for why I was speeding - "I know it's a nice day, and you are just out driving with the sunroof open for the first time this season, and you're getting a little 'mommy-alone time'... but please slow down. "

Thank you for understanding me and my psyche, Officer.

Of course ...I still got the ticket, although he charged me with a lesser offense than speeding so that I only have to pay the fine, and won't get points on my license.

However, I don't know if Chad is going to be so willing to send me out on my own again any time soon!! :)

Monday, March 8, 2010

Special birthday present

I received a really special birthday present from my parents this year. Okay, I did kind of have it on my Amazon list, so I kinda picked it out myself, but they bought it for me and I am so happy with it. Thanks Mom & Dad!

And no, it is not my fondue pot, although they did buy me that as well. :)

It is a really cool necklace that has all 3 of my kids names on it. Now that my family is "complete" (ie, I won't be having any more babies), I really wanted something symbolic of all three of the children.

And while I find most "mother's" jewelry kind of ... well, not really something I'd want to wear very much, I think this is so cool and hip and I just ... are you getting the drift that I really, really like it???

Anyhow, here it is. Pardon the not-so-clear picture. I am one of those bloggers who doesn't have a $500 camera that takes perfectly zoomed and lighted photos. I am accepting donations if it bothers you too much. :)

It came from Lisa Leonard designs. She's online so check out her really great stuff! And no, I'm not making any money by plugging her, I just think her jewelry is really cool!

Thanks again Mom & Dad for the necklace!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

I'm still here

So I haven't posted anything for awhile. Partly this is because I am trying to spend less time online and more time actually living my life and spending my time a bit more wisely. Trying. :)

But the other thing is, well, do you ever just feel like there is just too much on your mind, and you just can't process it all? That's how I feel lately. The past week or two has been filled with a lot of conflicting emotions. And I don't want to thoughtlessly share something on my blog, especially if it involves more "serious" matters vs. the usual pictures of the kids and such.

There has been a lot of good. The other day was my birthday and I just totally enjoyed seeing how excited the kids got about it. Audrey made me about ten cards, and she even helped Carter make a card! It was really cute watching them conspire with Daddy about ice cream cake. :)

Also, on Saturday I did a little shopping .... (drumroll please) ALONE. Yes, me. In the car by myself! Going somewhere besides the grocery store! Then that evening my parents took Chad and I out to a really nice dinner at the Melting Pot to celebrate both my birthday and my mom's (which is a few days before mine). That was a huge, yummy treat.

Yes, I do have a fondue obsession. I even got an electric fondue pot for my birthday. :)

There has been a lot of just living life. I am working with Carter on potty training. I am trying to get enough sleep. Audrey has been having various friends over for playdates. I am (as always) trying to think of what to have for dinner. Chloe is getting around with an army crawl and cutting 2 top teeth. Chad and I are watching 24. I got a speeding ticket. (... that is a whole 'nother blog post...)

There has also been a lot of hard stuff. In the past week, one of Carter's little friends was very sick and ended up being hospitalized. Another friend is struggling with a debilitating depression. Another friend is dealing with a very difficult and complicated family situation. Some other friends of ours lost their baby through a miscarriage after trying for months and months to get pregnant. All this has just been weighing heavily on my mind. The good thing is that it is causing me to go to God over and over again and bring all these people and situations to Him. Really, it is the best thing I can do since I am so helpless - these are things I can't change, and truly - only God can do "immeasurably more than we could ask or imagine."

So ..... that's enough for now. Meanwhile... I'll just keep on keepin' on.