Sunday, June 17, 2012

I'm back!!

Hello again! I am going to start blogging again soon. I can't believe it has been over 2 years since I blogged here. Wow! The twinadoes are 5 now, and starting Kindergarten in the fall! Holy crap! In the meantime, check out my new blog at

Stay tuned...

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

I'm a cheap date!

This past week has been rough. Jordan was quite sick with bronchitis, which resulted in going back on his two nebulized medications, in addition to an antibiotic and a steroid. The steroid tastes awful, so it was a massive fight every time we had to give it to him. Then he got some kind of stomach bug which resulted in copious amounts of vomit in a 24 hour period. And when I say copious, I mean copious like 6 vomiting episodes in one morning. It was awful and resulted in much work and daycare being missed. And then Taylor got sick and participated briefly in Vomitfest 2010. Kids recovered, moms dragged ourselves around for the week.

Recently the kids have started deciding that they might not need to nap as much or at all anymore. We are devastated by this. And given their recent illnesses, clearly they need more sleep right now, not less. On Saturday, the kids napped for maybe an hour, and then were playing and chatting in their cribs, so we left them in there for a bit. Big mistake. HUGE! When we went in their room, both kids were stark naked and there was shit everywhere. OMG! They had thrown everything out of their cribs, including pull-ups full of shit, and they had danced and played in their own excrement, which was all over their cribs and themselves. We thought maybe we were going to escape this parenting experience. We were wrong. It immediately resulted in lots of work: baths, stripping the beds, washing everything, sanitizing the cribs and the mattresses. Did I mention we were already exhausted?

On Sunday everyone was healthy enough to follow through with plans we had made long ago. We have some local friends with twin boys who are a week younger than J&T and we have all been struggling with a lack of family support recently. Both families have been feeling overwhelmed, overtired, and just exhausted from the lack of breaks that we get from our kids. So, we have decided to exchange babysitting with each other once a month, so that each couple at least gets one day out together per month. To give you some perspective on the situation Penny and I have found ourselves in, I will let you in on a sad fact of our lives. Penny and I had not been out together on a date since September. That is 5 months ago folks! We don't have the money to pay a babysitter to go out very frequently and we don't have the village of family members around that I always thought I would have when I was raising my family. I envisioned dropping the kids off for the weekend with family members, so that they could have time with family and we could have time to rejuvenate as a couple. The reality is we just don't have that. It is very sad and a hard reality for us, but that's the way it is. We have considered crazy things like moving to FL where my mom is, or moving to MN where some of our best friends live who are in a similar situation to us. But, neither of those are really that feasible, so we need to make the best of what we have here.

So, on Sunday, we dropped J&T off at our friends' house at around 12:30, and we headed out for an actual date. We went to a show at the Flynn in Burlington. It was a group called Scrap Arts Music and the show was similar to Stomp in some ways. The group is from Canada and all of their instruments are made from found and recycled objects. The show was really good and you can catch the group at the opening ceremonies of the Olympics in a few weeks! How cool is that? Even better is that we had free tickets to this show from a local newspaper who was having a giveaway. After the show, we had some time to kill before an early dinner, so we hit the local big box baby store for some wipes and pull-ups. Then we went to dinner, using a certificate from that I had purchased. Are you familiar with If not, you should definitely check it out. You can get $25 gift certificates for lots of local restaurants for $2-$10, depending on the special they are running. I only buy them when they are $2 per certificate. Here's the way it works: You have to spend a minimum of $35, you can only use them for dinner, the tip gets automatically added to the bill, and you can only use one certificate per party. We both had an adult beverage, we shared an appetizer, and both had an entree. We met our $35 minimum, so were able to use our $25 gift certificate, and our out of pocket cost was $24. Do you know what that means? With free babysitting, a free show, and the gift certificate for the restaurant, we got a 6 hour date for a grand total of $24! OMG! That makes my coupon-using frugal heart so very, very happy!

Thanks E&D for the babysitting. We had a great time and are looking forward to returning the favor for you guys in a few weeks!

Topics I want to post about in the near future: troublesome toddler meal time, transitioning to toddler beds, losing the pacis in the next few months, and financial woes, coupled with gratitude for what we do have. Stay tuned! Is there any topic you want to hear about? Leave a comment and let me know!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

A place to keep track

I have been carrying these slips of paper around in my purse for too long and I need someplace to record this information, so it does not get lost. So, in continuing this blog as a modern day baby book, here are some height and weight stats from the past 2 years.


Unknown date (Early 2008 maybe?)
20 pounds, 7 oz (50th percentile)
29 inches long (75th percentile)
head: 48 cm around

21 pounds, 6 ounces
30.25 inches tall
head: 47.5 cm around (uh oh! shrinking!)

27 pounds
34.25 inches tall

27.5 pounds
35.25 inches tall
head: 50.8 cm around

29.2 pounds (50th percentile)
35.25 inches tall (50th percentile)


Unknown date (Early 2008 maybe?)
17 pounds, 12 ounces (25th percentile)
26.5 inches long (10th percentile)
head: 45 cm around

19 pounds, 3 ounces
28.5 inches tall
head: 45.5 cm around

24 pounds
32.75 inches tall

24 pounds
33 inches tall
head: 48.3 cm around

26.6 pounds (25th percentile)
33.5 inches tall (10th percentile)

Kinda cool to see the progress over the past two years!

Monday, November 30, 2009

That's all folks!

It's the end of November. And I freakin' did it! 30 posts in 30 days! I am super proud of myself for keeping up with it and actually finding things to post about. Perhaps some of you were bored to tears, but some people have told me they actually enjoyed the month and hearing about the happenings in our little piece of the world. Thanks for reading everyone! Blogging is a funny thing like that. People read and they know all about what is happening here, but I rarely know what is happening in the lives of others because they either have no blog or they have a much neglected blog (Nikki T, I am looking at you!!).

I hope that I can continue to post somewhat regularly on the blog, as I do enjoy it and it is a great way to document our lives. It's the modern day baby book!

Adios November and hello December. Be gentle to us, OK, Old Man Winter? I would like to put my request in for a warm and not too snowy winter. you hear that? It is the universe laughing at me!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Almost there!

November is almost over, which means NaBloPoMo is almost over, too. I totally completed this challenge. After today's post and tomorrow's post, I will have achieved 30 posts in 30 days. I can't believe I did it! Wahoo!

Today was a better day. I want to say that of course it was, as it could not have been much worse than yesterday, but I don't want to tempt the fates by saying something like that.

For the first time, Jordan and Taylor refused to nap today. They stayed in their cribs for over an hour before we finally gave in and let them get up. At first they were quiet and naps seemed imminent. But then they both pooped and yelled for us that they needed their diapers changed. After that, it was nothing but jumping on the crib mattresses, throwing everything in the cribs onto the floor, and talking and laughing. While it was annoying as hell that they did not nap, listening to them laugh and talk to each other was pretty cool. When they are getting along and playing together or talking to each other, it is pretty dang awesome and it makes me so happy that they have each other in this world.

I took the kids to the park for a few hours so that Penny could watch football in peace and then Penny had the kids for a few hours for dinner, baths, and books so that I could have some time to myself. I enjoyed getting my crafty on by working on some Secret Santa gifts. Very fun and it felt good to spend some time doing that stuff. I might try to do more of that on a regular basis between now and Christmas. There are certainly enough fun things I could make for people!

And, just like that, the 4-day weekend is over and we are back to the grindstone tomorrow. As my dad used to say, another day, another, make that 50 cents! Taylor's pink eye is a little pinker today than it has been because some moms (whom I will not name here, to protect the guilty parties) forgot to put the medicine on all weekend since her eye really was looking fine. Well, now it is not looking so fine and I hope the 4 doses of meds that we gave her today help enough that she can go to daycare tomorrow!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

We could not catch a break today.

We got up this morning with plans of a late breakfast/brunch at a place where we had a gift certificate. You have to spend at least $35 to be able to use the $25 certificate. No problem. We figured we would get out of there and only have to pay about $10 out of pocket. Awesome! Turns out, the place is super expensive (menu online did not have prices. Should have suspected something then!) and the service SUCKS. We ended up paying almost $30 out-of-pocket, which means that our breakfast (2 adult meals, one kid meal to split, 4 drinks) cost over $50. Are you effing kidding me? Wow. We will never go back there again. Because the service was so bad, we were late getting out of there, which put the pressure on for getting to our next destination.

We showed up in Burlington a few minutes after 12, and the Santa Parade was supposed to start at 12. We worried we might miss it. We had been talking it up to the kids so much, that we were worried they would be so disappointed. So, we found parking and hurried to where it was supposed to be. Huh. Why are there so few people around? We asked a crossing guard and he told us that the parade already happened...YESTERDAY! WTF? Are you kidding me? Our AAA magazine had the parade listed for today at noon. Oh well. Thanks for nothing AAA. (Well, except for when you came to our house yesterday and towed the car out of the mud. Thanks for that!)

So, we walk around the marketplace area. It is nice and sunny, so we have a walk around, and try to stop for a hot chocolate break with the thermos we had the forethought to bring. The thermos kept the stuff so warm for over 4 hours that Taylor burns her mouth and her Thermos brand stainless steel sippy cup leaks all over her. Awesome! Jordan then throws up outside of City Hall after a brief coughing fit. Wow! This day really rocks!

We then decide to head inside the mall, where we saw Santa setting up earlier. What? You don't think a kid who just puked should go and have pics with Santa? I totally disagree! There was no line, so we figured we might as well get some pictures taken of the kids with Santa so that all is not lost of the day. On the way there we pass a dude making balloon sculptures for kids. Our kids love them and want some. Only problem? The guy charges $3 per sculpture and we have no cash on us, so we have to pull the kids away from him with no balloon animals. God, this day really rocks!

We get to the Santa area. Huh. Where's Santa? Oh, he is on a break and will be back in 30 minutes. Seriously? Are you freakin' kidding me? There is really nothing to do and there is no way our kids can stand there for 30 minutes, in the rapidly growing line. (The guy who will be taking the pictures tries telling us that "30 minutes isn't really THAT long." Really, dude? With 2.5 year old twins who are already SO DONE? OK, then why don't you stand in line with them?) So, we finally admit defeat and decide to head home.

Have you had days like this? From start to finish, we seriously COULD NOT CATCH A BREAK! Nary a thing went as we expected or in our favor. Although, given the season, if I had to pick something to be thankful for, I think I could actually come up with a few things:

1) We were there for less than 2 hours, so parking was free
2) Jordan chose to puke outside, rather than inside the car (his favorite spot for puking), so we did not have to clean the car and the car seat of copious amounts of vomit. Unfortunately we (and by we, I mean Penny) are experts at cleaning puke out of the nooks and crannies of Jordan's car seat with Q-tips. Now there's a visual I bet you could have done without!
3) Verizon was sponsoring FREE miniature horse drawn buggy rides for kids around the square. Our kids took a little ride and had a blast!

On a day like today, I say this: Thank God for small favors.

Can tomorrow please be a better day? PLEASE???

Friday, November 27, 2009

The day after...

We had a lovely Turkey Day with friends and family. Everyone brought delicious additions to the meal and everyone went home with leftovers. My Nana's stuffing was a hit as always. I allowed myself to be off of South Beach yesterday. The plan was to be back on it today...The plan changed shortly after I woke up. The new plan is to get back on track ASAP. It is hard, but I am worth it. I can do this because I am strong and I have more power over food than it has over me, dammit! (I always think convictions sound stronger and better if you add "DAMMIT!" to the end of them, don't you?)

Anyway, the dishes are all done, the dishwasher is emptied, and our bellies (and the fridge) are full. Leftovers for dinner tonight, baby! Oh, and my low carb, no sugar pumpkin cheesecake was really good! There are leftovers and I am happy about that. I would definitely make it again.

Today we made an impromptu trip to some stores for some Black Friday action. We went to Toys R Us and Bed, Bath, and Beyond...both with the kids in tow. Since we did not go until almost 10 am, I expected things to be less crazy. I was right about BBB, but dreadfully wrong about Toys R Us. The line wound through several aisles and half way around the store. Holy crap! But, we got some good deals. I combined the sales with several coupons I had. God, I love coupons and can hardly buy things these days without them! Anyway, we got some stuff for J&T and some gifts for others. We spent $148. But, the sales and coupons saved us $118! So, if not for the sales and coupons, we would have spent almost $300! Awesome! We picked up a few deals at BBB, and that place was almost deserted, which was great. Jordan and Taylor were AMAZING and I was shocked at how patient they were. It could have been so much worse!

And now the kiddos are napping. And we are chilling out. Tomorrow there is a Santa Parade in Burlington, so I think we are going to hit that if the weather holds up. Sunday the moms are going to try to take turns having some much needed "Me Time."

Oh, and two other highlights for the day are:

1) The VUE got stuck in the mud in the driveway and we had to call AAA to come and tow it out.

2) Friends from Iowa did some big Black Friday shopping, including a very early a.m. trip to Target. They picked up a dual screen portable DVD player for us for the car, which was a door-buster on sale for only $88!! (We live in a very sad state with no Target!!) How amazing is it that someone would pick up something for you at that ungodly hour? Thanks so much Kate and Trish! Our road trip to Long Island in a few weeks will be so much easier, all thanks to you guys! You rock my world!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope everyone has a wonderful day with friends and family. I have so much to be thankful for today and everyday. If you visit the blog today, please leave a comment with what you are most thankful for this Thanksgiving! I am most thankful for my wife, my children, and our legally married life in the wonderful state of Vermont. And all my extended family and my friends are pretty darn awesome, too, and I could not get by without them!

Enjoy some turkey TV!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Sick Day

I am home with Taylor today, aka Madam Pink Eye. It is a mild case and she is already on meds, so it should be fine for tomorrow. But, never a dull moment. I am attempting to work from home as much as I can, but it's a challenge. I will go in to work for a few hours this afternoon when Penny comes home early.

A scene from my kitchen:

Taylor: What 'chu doin', Mama?
Chris: I am unloading the dishwasher.
T: Can me help?
C: Sure, you can help.

She helps for a few minutes...

T: We usin' teamwork, Mama.

OMG, did my two-and-a-half year old just use the word "TEAMWORK" correctly in a complete sentence? She most certainly did! Wowsers! Will wonders never cease? And by the way, where did she even pick that word up? It is amazing to witness vocabulary develop!

And now I need to get to cleaning and cooking. Big day with friends and Penny's family all here tomorrow. Gonna be a full house. Everyone brings a part of the meal, though, which makes it a lot easier on the hostesses with the most-estes. I guess you could say we use "TEAMWORK" to get our Thanksgiving day done, and done right!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Being Thankful

As we get closer to Thanksgiving, I am thinking about things I am thankful for, especially as compared to others. As you (I) go through life, it is hard not to compare myself to others. And I notice that I am mostly comparing myself to others who have more and feeling bad for myself. I am turning 35 in 1.5 months and there are certain things that I thought I would have in life by now, that just aren't there. Most of them revolve around money. We do not have a lot of money in the bank, we do not have our own house yet because of our debt to income ratios (Thank you very much student loans!), and we do not have money for a lot of extras.

But, we do have jobs that are dependable and allow us to get by with our basic needs met. We are incredibly lucky to have come out on the other side of infertility with not one, but two children. "One of each," people say, "You are so lucky!" And, dammit, yes, we are lucky. I need to remind myself about that as I go through my days and my months and my years. Others are not so fortunate, and I cannot take for granted the gifts that I have been granted. We have everything we really need. Well, maybe not enough "me time," but the basics are all taken care of. Working in the mental health field also provides me with many reminders of how lucky I am. In the past two years, we have gone on 2 trips to Disney World. Now, if that ain't lucky, I don't know what is!

It is much too easy to complain about things and feel bad for myself and to get caught up in the bullshit of everyday life. It is hard to remember the good stuff, when you are faced with 2 year old tantrums, kids rejecting you, saying they only want the other parent, and long, hard days of parenting. There's the dirty house, the bills to be paid, the bib and high chair tray cleaning THAT NEVER ENDS, the dishes that are always piled in the sink, etc, etc etc. But in the long run, I need to ask myself, "Do most of those things really matter?" The answer, of course is "No, not really."

My mom sent me a magazine article about the top 6 places to live in the United States. Our town was #3! We do live in a very nice area of VT and we are lucky to live here, even if there is no Target or Trader Joe's in this god forsaken state. (For the love of all that is holy. Please, TARGET, COME TO VERMONT ALREADY!)We live in a state that allows Penny and I to be legally married and offers our family all the protections that comes along with that. This is HUGE and we are lucky to have this right bestowed upon us in VT. Now, while I enjoyed the magazine article and enjoyed reading about our little town, I was dismayed when I looked down and saw where the article came from: AARP Magazine. Whatever. We (and the Baby Boomers) are very happy here...most of the time!

Things I am thankful for today:
1) Taylor, Jordan, and Penny
2) Having a warm house to sleep in at night (even if it is a rental!)
3) Having more than enough food and clothing for me and my family

What do you do to keep it real and remember to count your blessings on a regular basis?

Monday, November 23, 2009

So much to do

So, I have a confession to make. I am addicted to the Internet. It's bad! And it is causing a snowball of wee problems. The kids go to bed at 7. Penny and I then cook dinner, do dishes, etc. We eat dinner either both in front of the TV or her in front of the T and me here at the computer. I read blogs, I follow and participate on a very active message board, I email, I facebook (and play Bejeweled Blitz and Cafe World), etc, etc. I spend a lot of time following couponing blogs that give tons of amazing deals and tips of free samples. I have saved tons of money doing this, but it is very time consuming.

I crave this time of the day when I can do whatever I want, without interruption. I stay up too late as a result of not wanting it to end. And then I am too tired to get up and exercise before work. And on and on and on. I also know I spend too much time on here in general, including on the weekends, and that Penny is not too wild about it. It easily sucks me in for hours, so I can see her point.

Also, my Internet time is cutting into time that I really want to spend on other things. Things like scrap booking, my business as a Creative Memories Consultant, knitting, sewing, reading are all suffering because I am online for many hours each night.

I have thought about setting a timer and trying to limit my time online to one hour a night. That way, I would spend time doing the things online that I felt were most important (like serving my Cafe World food. I mean, you don't want it to spoil!), like blogging and catching up with friends. And then once the hour is over, I would need to force myself to log off.

So, in the name of logging off at an appropriate time: It is 10:19 pm. I am now logging off to go and read my new library book: Commencement. It is written by a Smithie, about the Smithie experience. Bring it on!

How about you and your Internet use? Any feelings of being on too much? Guilt, exhaustion, etc? Tell me your war stories and how you have dealt with the draw of the Internet.

Things I am thankful for today:
1) Being able to have fruit on Phase 2 of F
2) A 3-day work week and a 4 day weekend to spend time with family. May it be restful (HA!) and not too stressful!
3) A good and reliable job that pays me enough to support my family, even if we do have to squeak by and be very careful with spending. I am thankful for the affordable health care that the job provides, too.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Rough one

It was a tough weekend at our house. I don't know if the kids are on the edge of some developmental milestone, or it's a growth spurt, or what. But we had about one cajillion tantrums here over the weekend, and frankly, I am looking forward to going back to work tomorrow. How pathetic is that?

We did not have any big plans this weekend, so we were looking forward to spending time at home, relaxing, etc. What it turned into, instead, was tantrum fest USA. The lack of planned activities did nothing for the moods of Taylor and Jordan. And, it did not help that Penny and I were trying to get through as much of a gigantic to-do list as possible, in preparation for hosting Thanksgiving at our house on Thursday.

The one highlight of the weekend was going to the library yesterday. Other than that, it feels like we spent a lot of time comforting crying kids, dealing with time-outs, and trying to figure out ways to entertain the little tykes. Inevitably, the TV went on as we tried to clean things, vacuum things, wash and fold things, and on and on. The house is quite clean. I scrubbed the hell out of our disgusting tub after I put the kids to bed. But, I fear that the lack of planned activities, coupled with no outside time, and too much TV on Saturday, maybe have caused our difficult weekend. I dunno, maybe it was a combo of all those things. Or maybe they were just being 2.5. This age is HARD!!!

And now, it is almost midnight, so I better hit post and get this in before the clock strikes 12.

Things I am thankful for today:
1) Phase 2 of South Beach starts tomorrow. Give me some fruit, dammit!
2) Going back to work tomorrow means back to a predictable routine.
3) A full Creative Memories schedule for January. Now, I just need to make my quota for December and I will be able to get to a very fruitful January!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Bed Time Sweetness

Tonight as I was putting Taylor to bed, I said to her, "I love you. You're my best girl."

And she replied, "You're my best mama. I love you!"

Oh, swoon! Is that the cutest thing you ever heard?

Other noteworthy things about the day: we went to the library, Penny kicked ass getting some house organizing and cleaning done (She cleaned the stove and the microwave! Give that woman a medal!), and the kids took very decent naps. Also, My Creative Memories Team is doing a "hot potato challenge" this weekend. Every time someone from my team calls me, I have to book a Get Together with a customer for January in order to pass the potato on to someone else. The (very lofty) goal is to book 6 get-togethers in January each, so that you can get the year off to a great start. I have 5 GT's booked already! I have calls and emails out to a few other people, so this number could still go up. A lesson learned for me today was that it was not as hard as I always make it in my mind. I really need to put more work into my business, and make it a more lucrative endeavor.

Things I am thankful for today:
1) Kids who slept until 8 am!
2) Free offers online that allowed me to get 100 photo holiday cards for only the price of shipping ($6.40)
3) Having enough commitment to the SB diet to have made it to Phase 2 (starting on Monday. I did it!)

Friday, November 20, 2009


We had a lovely evening of dinner and board games (80's trivia and Pass the Pigs)with some friends tonight. The kids went down very easily and slept the whole time we ate and played with Megan and Jean. We even ate a Phase One South Beach dinner! I have lost 10 pounds on the South Beach diet. And today I wore a pair of pants to work that did not fit 3 weeks ago.

It's Friday, it's payday (even though there is very little left after paying the rent and other bills) and I am satisfied!! Most of the chores are done and the shopping is all done for Thanksgiving. Bring on the weekend, baby!

I am taking part in a Creative Memories challenge this weekend, where I am on a team and we are aiming to schedule as many Get Togethers for the month of January as possible. I hope I can do my part and get some folks to schedule! Wish me luck! Anyone want to sign up with me???

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Nature cures all

After a very rough morning with Jordan, I was so pleased to be able to take a 45 minute walk all by myself in the woods. The silence was blissful and it really helped me to regroup for the day. We have some amazing trails literally across the street from our house and they go on and on for acres. It feels like you are far away and in another place, but you are really just in the woods across the street. I am so glad I did it, because I was in a foul mood and I feared the day would be ruined.

I have Thursdays off and the kids are at daycare, but I find that there is SO much to do that I often feel overwhelmed and even put upon. I usually do dishes, laundry, grocery shopping, and take the trash to the dump. The day goes by way too fast and sometimes I don't even feel like I got much done. I always want to get enough done that Penny feels like I contributed, but I also try to take some time for myself (which Penny supports). We really try to give each other "me time," either away from home or for a few hours on the weekends, but it literally never seems like enough.

I just think that 2.5 years of sleep deprivation and just everything that is involved with parenting twins has really taken a toll on us. So even a weekend away does not seem like enough. And then of course I feel guilty for craving more time away from everyone.

Jordan has been very challenging lately with epic tantrums that make me want to tear my hair out. The screaming drives me bonkers and he often prefers Penny, so even when I go to him to try to comfort him (when that seems appropriate and necessary), he pushes me away and says he wants Mommy. I am usually not good enough for much when it comes to Jordan's needs when he is upset. This is tough and makes me want to withdraw. We usually just let him do his thing if he can do it safely, i.e. at home on the floor or in his crib. God forbid we are out and about when this happens, as it is a fit of epic proportions and then we have to try to buckle him in to his car seat. OMG, what a fiasco!

People I know with older kids say that 3 year-olds are worse than 2 year-olds. If that's true, then I want to start going backwards, rather than forwards. Where do I sign up for that? Some days I really want my snuggly babies back!

But, deep breath in, deep breath out. One day at a time. Thank god for walks in the woods and the support of Penny, friends, and family.

Things I am thankful for today:
1) Walks in the woods.
2) Feeling good off of sugar and on the South Beach Diet. Down 9 pounds so far!
3) Having the luxury of a day at home alone to get chores done so that my family can have more fun together on the weekends.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

So wrong on so many levels.

If it's wrong to wish for something eventful to happen during your day so that you have something to blog about, then I don't want to be "write." Get it? Write? Oh, I am too funny!

I work late on Wednesday nights because I co-lead a Stress Management Group. When I got home at almost 8 pm tonight, Penny has dinner going full steam ahead and both kids were in bed, nice and quiet. Awesome! Dinner was chicken with a cheese and tomato sauce that tasted very much like lasagna, and spaghetti squash. We cooked that squash and we cooked that squash and it just did not seem to be getting done. But then it was finally done. And we knew it was done when it EXPLODED IN THE MICROWAVE! By the time I got into the kitchen, the microwave had smoke (maybe steam?) pouring out of it. The squash was fine...well, the parts I did not have to scrape off the walls and ceiling of the microwave were yummy anyway! And as soon as it happened, I thought, "I am SO gonna blog about this tonight!" DORK!!!

Penny relayed a conversation she had with Taylor on the way home from daycare today that is definitely blog-worthy as well. (Blog-worthy is a lot like 'sponge worthy' for your Seinfeld fans out there!)

Taylor: Mommy, you a girl?
Penny: Yes, Taylor, Mommy is a girl.
Taylor: Mama a girl?
P: Yes, Mama is a girl.
T: Jordan boy. No girl.
P: Right. Jordan is a boy.
T: Me a girl?
P: Yes, you are a girl.
T: But why I no have boops?

For some reason, our daughter is obsessed with breasts, or as she likes to call them "boops." Penny then has to explain to our little miss that girls get boops when they get older. Somehow I thought it would be several years before I had to have talks like that with J&T!

Things I am thankful for today:
1) Dinner very close to being done when I got home
2) Very verbally gifted children who can tell me what is on their minds
3) A regular 4 day work-week that allows me to get stuff done for the house and the family on Thursdays

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Blogging is hard!

Remember that Barbie that had everyone up in arms because she said things like "Math is hard!" and "Science is hard!" ? Well, I feel like that Barbie right now. "Blogging is hard!" This NaBloPoMo thing is harder than I anticipated. During the day I might have some ideas for posts, but then I forget and then it's after 11 pm before ya know it and I am once again in front of the computer wondering what the hell to write.

Jordan's pink eye is improving, but he might be coming down with something else. He was SUPER cranky this evening and had a low grade fever. I hope he sleeps OK tonight and does not wake up with his eyes fused shut! He also did not nap at daycare today and screamed bloody murder all the way home. Penny left me a voicemail message as he was screaming to make sure I knew how good of a time she was having.

We were all supposed to go to a neighborhood dinner tonight. Once every few weeks one of the neighbors makes dinner for everyone and we are all invited. I love these dinners, as they are free, healthy, prepared dinners that do not involve having to cook or clean up. We have hosted a few times and it is really fun. I think we are up again soon. The only down side to these dinners is that they are on week nights, so it is east for the whole night to go by and it be kiddo bedtime before ya know it. We try to get home before meltdown city!

Taylor and I went to the dinner alone tonight, as Jordan was in no mood to go out again. Before Taylor and I left, I bribed Jordan with cookies to let us put his eye drops in. It worked! He got his drops and his two cookies. And I got to leave without a huge song and dance. Taylor was super charming and everyone was pretty much smitten with her. The neighbors only see the kids once every 1-3 months or so, depending on how often the dinners are, so there are always big changes. They were particularly impressed with her ability to play on her own tonight while mama ate her dinner, and with how much she was talking. We first brought the kids to these dinners when they were 3 months old and we were brand new to the 'hood. So much has changed in the past two years!

South Beach is going well, but it is a daily struggle to resist sugar and carbs. I have lost 7.5 pounds so far (in just over a week!) and feel great about that. It is awesome to have a friend who is doing the same plan. We really support each other and help each other through the rough times. We are planning a South Beach friendly Thanksgiving. And even our book group has agreed to eat South Beach friendly food! This is all so helpful! I plan to stay on this for the long term and hope to lose a very substantial amount of weight over the next year. One meal at a time, one day at a time!

And now I have to go and wait for my pictures to finish uploading on Snapfish. If they can all get uploaded by midnight, I can get 100 free prints! Awesome. Except it is taking FOREVER and I am not sure I am gonna make it. Hopefully I do not fall asleep on the keyboard as I wait!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Do you need some laughs?

If you are in need of some laugh therapy, please check out these websites ASAP.

And of course, the classic:

Do you know why I needed some laughs this morning? Because I awoke to screams of "My eyes! My eyes!" coming from Jordan and Taylor's room. Jordan's eyes were fused shut with goo. Well hello pink eye, my old friend! Welcome back!

Sunday, November 15, 2009


On 9/1/09, it became legal for same sex couples to get legally married. Vermont was the first state to pass the same sex marriage bill into law without a law suit. The Vermont legislators saw an injustice and they put their money where there mouths are and they did something about it. I have never been so happy to live here as when the news was announced!

We had a Civil Union in 2004, but wanted to get married as well for the additional legal protections for our family. So, on 9/11/09, the 5 year anniversary of our Civil Union, we got married in a very short and sweet ceremony, peformed by our friend and coworker, Wanda Miller, who is also a minister. The lovely albeit short ceremony was at the Women's Peace Park in Montpelier and was attended by two guests: Penny's sister Cindy and her niece Jessie. They brought us each a red rose for the ceremony. At the conclusion of the ceremony, we celebrated with some very festive wedding eclairs.

And now Jordan and Taylor have moms who are legally married. While there is still much work to be done on a federal level so that our marriage can be recognized federally, this is one significant step forward and I am very greatful to live in state where it is possible. Thank you Vermont!

P.S. The pics are out of order, but blogger is being weird and I am having trouble editing the post and moving the pictures around. You'll get the gist of things, anyway, I am certain!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Tough times in the land of 2.5 year olds

Times are often tough here in the land of 2.5 year old twins. And, by the way, wow! The kids are now 2 and a half. In 6 months they will be three. I am seriously blown away! But 2.5 is hard. The tantrums, most often displayed by Jordan, are wicked. The screaming in the car is enough to make me want to drive into oncoming traffic just to make it stop. And the throwing of one's self to the ground (most often the kids, not the moms!) and flailing and wailing, especially when displayed in public, is just, well, lovely. Really, really lovely. Sometimes Penny and I have to tag team when it feels like the one dealing with the tantrum is about to blow and needs a time-out. That's when I feel so lucky to have a partner with whom I am sharing this parenting stuff. I can tag her in, and take a time-out so I do not tear my hair out or scream in frustration. It is so hard not to take things personally, especially when said tantrums involve some kind of assault (kicking, hitting, pulling hair, etc.), regardless of whether said assault was purposeful or not. It is during these times that I think of my friends who are single parents. I bow down to them, I salute them, and I stand in awe of them. Sometimes I can't (or don't want to) handle my two on my own for even an afternoon. I can't imagine flying solo ALL THE TIME! We manage the tantrums with time-outs for moms and kids, using sticker charts and other rewards (bribes!) to encourage and reward the behavior we want to see, and planned ignoring of negative behaviors. All of this works relatively well...except when it doesn't. Like anything else in parenting, it is a work in progress.

In other news...Thanksgiving is less than 2 weeks away! Holy crap! And so begins the whirlwind to the end of the year. Penny is having knee surgery at the beginning of December. Then we are going to my brother's house on Long Island for a long weekend to visit with the Parker clan: mom coming from FL and other brother and his girlfriend coming from MA. Christmas comes early for the Parkers this year. And then Christmas proper will be upon us. Happy New Year and all the jazz. Welcome 2010. A few days later, and holy crap I am turning 35. Wow. Mid thirties. As close to 40 as I am to 30. Advanced maternal age. (Not that I am really thinking about having any more babies, but, well, that offer of extra sp*erm mentioned by Eryn in the comments a few posts ago sure got me thinking. Penny just keeps slapping me upside the head every time I bring it up.)

We had a nice morning at the library today. Jordan and Taylor are finally at the place of being interested in picking out books and sitting while we read ENTIRE books to them. This is new and very exciting for me. I have been looking forward to this time for a long time. Today Taylor wanted booked about fish and Jordan wanted boooks about Dinosaurs. The kids took an awesome nap when we got home (2.5 hours!!), allowing Penny and me to catch up on the 3-part CSI crossover episodes from last week. Penny baked cookies with the kids in the afternoon, too. I have managed to not eat any and stay totally on target with my South Beach-ing. I am so proud of myself. Nary a morsel of BAD carbs or sugar have passed my lips in 6 days! I agreed that Penny could make the cookies with the kids, as long as she packaged them up and put them away so I could not see them or be tempted by them. When I gave the kids one each with their dinner, I inhaled deeply into the bag. I am pretty sure that sugar inhalation is allowed on South Beach.

Things I am thankful for today:
1) A loving and competent co-parent
2) A pantry where cookies can be tucked away, out of sight, out of mind
3) The public library, especially on a rainy and cold Saturday morning