Thursday, March 31, 2011

Little Reader

I cannot even tell you how big this makes me smile:
"Mommy, I reading all the words all by myself!"

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Tea Time at the Smiths

This morning Carter requested a tea party.  Yes, Carter.  I think he just likes to drink out of little cups and he LOVES to put some sugar in the water (big surprise there).  So a tea party we had.  (And apparently writing like Yoda I am.) ??

 No pinkies in the air here .... just a full face in the cup and half the water down her front.  Someone is not a very lady-like tea drinker yet.  :)


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Fun with Grandpa and Grandma

This past weekend Chad's parents were here for a visit.  The kids love to see their grandparents!  Well, Audrey & Carter get very excited.  Chloe spent a day looking at them a bit skeptically but she slowly warmed up.  Grandpa quickly learned that sneaking her some jellybeans was a great way to make friends...  ;)

 The first agenda item was celebrating Grandma's birthday, which was on March 12th. 

One of the gifts we gave Chad's Mom was these silhouettes of the kids.  I made one for my Mom on her birthday too.   I got this idea from my friend Kelly ... and I finally made the time to do something crafty!

Grandma's new phone was quite popular with the kids!  
There were some fun games on her phone.  And I just have to point out that I am officially in the dark ages.  I have an old pay-as-you-go flip phone that doesn't even text efficiently.  Not that I text ... yup, I am old.

Carter read Hop on Pop to Grandma.

Carter talked Grandpa into a few games of Mario Kart.

Chloe had fun playing with Grandma too.
All in all, it was a low-key few days but that was good.  We all had plenty of time to just hang out and spend time together.
The kids are already asking when they are coming back!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

First Day of Spring

Today is the first day of spring, and you know what that means?
 Free water ice at Rita's!

Chad got party cake water ice.  
(I know, that sounds kind of yuck but it was actually really creamy and good!)

Of course, his water ice and spoon were quickly taken over by a little girl in pink. :)

 Really, they were enjoying their water ices ...
it was a little bit cold out though

Just ask Chloe - she's "cold" too!

Hey, there's a smile. :)

 Thank you Rita's ... you put us all in a "happy place"!

Well, that is until it was all gone and Chloe had a little meltdown ...

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick's Day = Failure

You know, sometimes as a mom you can't win.

I decided  - now that I feel like some of the "fog" of baby brain has lifted - to try to do something more "fun" for St. Patrick's Day.  A holiday which I have previously ignored despite my being part Irish.

So I was thinking about food.  My first thought of course was corned beef, but seeing as I have never made corned beef - and I can't even recall ever eating corned beef  - I quickly crossed that off the list.  My next thought was Shepherd's Pie - but then I realized that 2 out of 3 kids LOATHE mashed potatoes.  (I know, what is wrong with them???)  So I finally settled on "fish & chips" which for me meant heating up frozen Gorton's fish fillets and french fries.  Lame, but at least I thought they would eat it ... especially since I was making a mint chocolate chip ice cream pie for dessert! 

Well, Carter & Chloe would not touch the fish.  Chad asked "What exactly is this that we're eating .. chicken strips?"  Audrey ate the "Irish fish" (as she called it) without complaint, especially after she heard about dessert.  But she has always been my best eater.  So very mixed reviews on dinner.  Not really very fun after all.

But besides that - I forgot to dress any of my children in green.  This morning I went to the bus stop and every. single. kid. had on green.  Complete with special green shamrock hairbows and skirts and shirts, etc, etc.  Audrey wore green pigtail holders but that was it.  She then came home and asked if she had anything green to wear outside to play.  Of course I could not find one single green item in her entire wardrobe.  Fail.

Then Audrey asked why the leprechauns didn't mess up anything in our house.  (And I am thinking - leprechauns are supposed to mess things up?  News to me... I thought they were looking for a pot of gold...)   Fail again.

Sheesh.  Back when I was a kid my mom didn't do any of this stuff and I never felt ripped off.  (Of course none of the other moms did all this stuff either ...)  I have to say - I am finding it irritating that every single little holiday is now filled with great expectations ... expectations that all fall on the Mom.  Which is fine if you are Miss Creativity and full of fun ideas and unlimited time and money.  But apparently I am not THAT mom. 

Seriously.  Valentine's Day used to mean giving each classmate a valentine.  Now it means giving each classmate a valentine plus candy/a pencil/a goody bag.  Easter used to be finding a few eggs in the yard and a basket of candy.  Now it seems - if the latest Target ad is any indication - that it also involves presents AND toys AND baskets of candy.  And I LOVE Christmas but don't even get me started.

I know that I don't have to choose to "keep up with" everyone else.  But it is hard when your kids come home wondering why you didn't do all these things that everyone else did .... it makes you feel - well, a little like a failure.

Anyhow - I know I am a good mom despite my St. Patrick's Day failings.  So I'm not up on all the cool creative things you're supposed to do.  So no one wore green.  At least I am confident that today I spent time with my children and  loved them and treated them well.  That's what they will remember in the long run.

And the mint chocolate chip ice cream pie?  Well ... at least that was a hit.  :)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Beauty & the Beast

No, this is not a blog post about me and Chad ... haha.

Today Audrey and I got to have some special time together - just the two of us.  We have been looking forward to it all week!  Although this morning, I have to admit - I was wondering if we were going to have a good time.  I was feeling tired and for whatever reason, Audrey woke up in a funky mood which seemed to linger throughout the day.  But after many prayers for patience whispered under my breath, we ended up having a fun afternoon.  ;)

Audrey with her Belle doll, which she wanted to bring along

So... we went to see a high school production of Beauty and the Beast.  I was so amazed at the fact that high schoolers pulled off such an amazing show - especially musically.  (I didn't know a single kid in the show but I was really proud of them!)  Afterwards we went out to dinner together.  After talking her out of yet another trip to McDonalds, we ended up at Friendly's.

It's  interesting.  These kind of excursions are not only enjoyable for me as a parent, but are also a bit enlightening.  For example, I don't know why - but I expected Audrey to be much more outwardly "excited" throughout the afternoon.  I guess because she had been talking about going to this play with me for weeks.  Then when we were there she was so reserved about it that I actually wondered if she even was enjoying it.  Durirng the intermission I was asking her what she thought about the show and she gave me very short answers.  I actually felt a little discouraged that we weren't "talking" much but just kind of hanging out together .  I had to tell myself to not have expectations but to just enjoy the time together and trust that it was worthwhile whether we "talked" or not.

But later on I had a little revelation - Audrey is in many ways a lot like her mama.  We both tend to hold a lot of our feelings and emotions inside. I think we both - in the midst of something - are so busy processing our thoughts and feelings internally  that it may not appear to those around us like we are having any feelings at all.  I don't know if that makes any sense to anyone but me .... but it was a little like looking in a mirror.  Anyhow, she may not have said much about the day in the moment.  But when I was tucking her in tonight, she wanted me to lay down for a few minutes with her.  I am glad I did!  She proceeded to talk about our day, and ask me who my favorite character was in the play, and we had a nice little discussion about the whole thing.  So I guess that she just needed some time to take it in and think about it before she was ready to talk.  ;) 

Anyway - that was my little light bulb moment for today.  Thank you, God, for entrusting my Audrey to me and please help me to love her well, especially in the moments when I don't always "understand" her.  

***  Just in case anyone local is interested in the show - it was at Delaware County Christian School in Newtown Square.  I know they are doing 3 more shows next weekend if you're interested!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Sick kids, Part 2

Poor Carter & Chloe.  This week they both got hammered again.  BUT:  Thankfully this was a very short-lived illness!  Fever lasted 24 hours, coughing/wheezing for a few days.  That's it.  Thank you Lord!

But it has been really stressful to me.  I had a few nights of being up every hour or two all the live-long night.  Then I called the doctor's office for some advice about Carter and they told me to take him to the ER (it was at the end of the day).  Which - don't call child services - I did NOT do.  I just thought that was way over the top  ... and I also realized that his inhaler was out of medicine and this is why it was not working.  Duh.  But hey.  As previously stated - I was pretty sleep-deprived. 

Then I took Chloe to the doctor the next morning - she was really breathing hard and wheezing.  So I came home with instructions to start giving her nebulizer treatments.  Of course with my insurance I couldn't simply bring a nebulizer home with me from the doctor's office, I had to call insurance ... then call the medical equipment company .... then call them back .... then talk to the local subcontracted medical equipment company ... then wait til 8 pm at night for them to drop the thing off.  I was so irritated by then and I felt like crying which - as previously stated, I was pretty sleep-deprived, thus the tears ...

Anyhow - all that stress - and this morning the kids were basically fine.  Still giving them the asthma meds but they were eating and playing and squabbling like any other day.  I'll take it!   I know it is so worrisome when they are sick ... but it just reminds me to be oh-so-thankful that illness is not a daily thing for them.  I know some people have children who are truly ill and fighting for their lives.

A little benefit of  all the nebulizer treatments is that I get 10 minutes of uninterrupted cuddle time!  
Now ... off to bed.  I am oh. so. tired!

Sunday, March 6, 2011


I just celebrated my 39th birthday.  Yup, next I will be the big 40!  Which of course, just can't be.  Chad and I went out last night to celebrate my birthday and he said to me "When you start saying - there is no way I can be [this age], I think that is when you're getting to mid-life crisis point."  I think there is a little truth in that.  Although I don't feel like I'm having a "crisis" at all ... I am actually happy to be my age.  (Not so happy about the wrinkles and slowing metabolism but that is another blog post.)  But I am happy with where God has me, here at age 39.  And the wrinkles are mostly smile lines so how can I complain?

Anyhow, I had a really, really great day.   I don't have too many pictures of most of it .... because I just didn't bother with my camera.  Honestly, I just get caught up in enjoying what I'm doing and I'm really not thinking about my blog and getting photos to share.  Which is fine - I'd rather just live in the moment anyhow! 

My day started with breakfast out with Chad and Chloe while the 2 other kids were at school.  I LOVE eating breakfast out!  Then I went out for lunch at .... Chick-fil-a!  We met my friend Lyn there.  And now I just have to share this story because it was so cute.  When I picked Carter up from preschool, I surprised him with going out to lunch.  I said "We're going to Chick-fil-a" ... and he said "I LOVE Chick-fil-a!" then I added "And we're going  with Lyn!" and he thought a minute and said "I LOVE Lyn!"  (I think she got a kick out of that story too!)  He is so enthusiastic.  :)  So we had lunch, the kids played in the playland a little bit, then Lyn came over and hung out with me all afternoon.  Fun!  She also gave me some beautiful flowers.  Guess what?  I love Lyn too!  hehe

I did take one photo at Chick-fil-a ... Chloe has discovered ketchup and was eating it with her finger straight out of the container!

Later Chad came home and we all hopped in the van and went to my parents' house for dinner and cake.  My brother and my friend Melissa came too!  Then we opened presents and guess what I got ... I was so surprised!

See?  I told you I was surprised!

 It was a KINDLE!!!
Oh boy, am I going to have fun with this baby!
Chad, his parents, and my brother chipped in to get it for me.
My parents gave me a leather cover to go with it and an Amazon gift card.
Now I am going to have to finish this post up rather quickly because I have books to download!
PS - I have been on a huge reading kick lately so perhaps I will do a post on some books that I have enjoyed and would recommend!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Like mother, like daughter

Yesterday Chloe and I had a little fun with the camera.  We took the photos ourselves so pardon the unflattering nature of some of the photos ....  She is in a major phase of making faces and mimicking so it was fun to see what she did.
Pouty lips
Sucking in our lips
Sticking out tongues

Giggle break!

 More lower lips


 Pretty smiles  :)