Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Girlfriends are the Best

So we finally did it! We actually closed on the house we have been hunting after yesterday!!!! So naturally the first thing I did was call my girlfriends and schedule a pool playdate for this morning at the new house! Even though the house is completely bare (and needs a bit of TLC) we didn't care. We brought towels, suits, and lunches and met there at 10:30 this morning.

And after some serious fun romping with the kids in the pool we sprawled out on the patio for lunch. That is when they pulled it out...a bottle of champagne to celebrate! So as the kids munched on pb&j the mommies sipped champagne from plastic glasses, and toasted to new beginnings!

Daily Mom

Thank you Comcast!

I never though I would miss blogging this much...but I do! So as long as comcast cooperates and I have internet (it has been out since Irene) I will have lots to post about...

Daily Mom

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Day in the Life

As always our days have been filled with a little bit of crazy! We were going to mess with nature and stay in our house on the Sound in CT and see what Irene really had in store for us, but after listening to my better judgment mom we decided not to take any chances with our little peanut in the car, and headed back to B-more (yes, I know, it is right in Irene's path also). So before we ran around the house, frantically packing up, we took a few breaks to enjoy the last few days of our vacation...
We started with a game of "you get up on Gigi's nice chairs and your toast", which A thinks is the funniest game ever!

Then the boats sailed out front for the start of thier race, so she went to the door to watch

Being the cutest kid ever, she didn't want her flower bunny to miss out, so she sat her down too.

After finally getting comfy, the dog thought it looked like fun and joined in too!

Then I go up stairs for 0.5 second and I find daddy teaching her to hang from the door frame. It was crazy how much she loved just swinging there while he stood below spotting! (Yikes, increaded blood pressure warning!)

Then my mom and I snuck off during nap time to get our nails done and in walks Grandma with her iPad!

Nothing like a game of Sudoku while getting a pedicure...

And finally, we headed to a friend's house for cocktails with A...who wanted to wear her fairy wings.

Hope you had a little magic in your week too!

Come on, Irene!!!!!
Daily Mom

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Visiting the Ducks

Captivated by the ducks
Annoyed a little boy had bought a bag of "duck food" to feed them. Sorry, A, Mommy loves you but not $11.00 worth for a tablespoon size of grain to throw at the ducks.
Over the disappointment and excited to see the ducks again!
Quack, quack!
After seeing them swim, we had to walk over to their grass area.
Hanging out with Gigi, watching the ducks
The pond was much more fun, so we headed back there
And A almost got splashed!

Daily Mom

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sea Glass

Yesterday one of our closest family friends came up to visit for a few days, so naturally we have been showing her around! First we went for a nice long bike ride around the point, then it was off to Mystic, one of the cutest New England towns around. Then it was up early to go for a walk, with a mandatory stop to look for sea glass, before heading to the Mystic Seaport before lunch.
A look down mainstreet
A was fascinated when the bridge went up!

Gigi, A, and Mommy

Playing at the Seaport this morning

We have had so much fun together, but what it really made me appreciate was taking the time to just enjoy our area, unscheduled. And for me the highlight was collecting sea glass this morning. Before A was born I was pretty skilled at dragging my hubby out of the house to go search for sea glass, but having a 3-6 month old last summer and a 1 1/2 year old this summer, my sea glass expedition have been super limited. I have taken the opportunity a few nights after I got A bathed and to bed, and when my parents were in the house relaxing on the porch, to sneak out to the little beach across our driveway to search, but those times are few and far between. Of course searching for sea glass is something I cannot wait to do with A when she is a little older, but now she is much more interested in watching for sea gulls, running on the beach, and digging in the sand.
A few of my favorites that I have collected
Here is my collection...small but beautiful!

So until I can focus her attention on the mystery and enchantment behind sea glass, I guess I will have to rely on sneaking off to search at dusk, knowing one day we will walk the beach together, plastic bag in hand and excitement running through our bodies.  

Daily Mom

Monday, August 22, 2011

Um, What?

Every week I look forward to catching up with Sandra, Reese, Kim, Kourtney, and Jen, while seeing who wore it best, who broke up with who, and the latest rehab news...yep, you guessed it, I am obsessed with my Trashy Mags. However, once a month (or somewhere around there) I get another magazine in the mail that I can hardly wait to tear through...Parents Magazine.

I was never very good at keeping up with What to Expect, either while I was prego or during the first year. I mean who has time to actually read a book while watching a toddler, folding laundry, making meals, and trying to remember to keep the magic alive with that other adult who lives in the house with you? Sometimes prioritizing means giving up things, and in my case pleasure books were one of the first to go. However, I find I can read the shorter articles of Parents during the day when A is happily playing by herself, and at night I can dive into the longer articles.

Anyway...when my hubby brought up my new Parents Magazine this weekend I couldn't wait to learn some new tricks, since life with a toddler is all about bribing diverting their attention (something I also picked up in Parents). So I thought I would share my favorite little blurb with you, to make you feel a little better about those Mommy Brain moments, where you just can't think of the right word. 

In case you have the September issue, the blurb is on page 36 (at the bottom). I am typing just what they have in the magazine, because if the paid journalist can sum up this concept in under 50 words, why should I bother to paraphrase! Enjoy, and hope you feel a little better about yourself today!

Um, What?
The stumbles and fumbles you make in your own speech may actually help increase your toddler's vocabulary, according to a recent study in Developmental Science. Researchers found that when you pause before or trip over a word that you use infrequently ("can you hear the , uh, xylophone?") your child will anticipate that she's about to learn something new and pay closer attention to the word you say after you stammer.
Parents Magazine
September, 2011 Issue

So of course I tried this out today.
Me: "Hey, A, would you like to see the, um, triangle?"
Me: "A, what do we call this animal? The, um, rhinoceros."
Me: "Sweetheart, if you throw your fork across the table again you will get a, um, timeout."

Okay, so it is still a work in progress, but I kid you not, when I was doing those with the "um" in there she did actually turn her head to look at me speaking. So, um, try it with your kids!

Daily Mom

Friday, August 19, 2011

Monkey See, Monkey Do

I always knew when my older sister had three girls that my children were going to have great little ladies to look up to, follow around, and envy. And since being on this vacation and getting a really good look at each girl's personality, I have tweaked my prediction to include get in trouble with, plotting mischief, and living it up with!

When A and I were at the beach the day I was watching the girls, the littlest came running up to me and told me she had to go potty. So naturally, I did what any mom would do, I asked her pee-pee or poo-poo. After the relieving response of pee-pee, I told her to go in the ocean. I know what you are thinking, and no I am not corrupting my nieces...yet...I distinctly remember hearing my sister tell her daughter the same thing, "just pee in the ocean". Plus I had A on the beach too, and there was not much I could do with two small girls and a far away potty.

Anyway, as her cousin started walking down toward the water, I thought nothing of it. Then she stopped on the sand where the waves barely wash up to, and in a beautiful plie, starting peeing. As I grab A and rush to the water to tell her to wade in more she does a full squat down where she is and tells me, "it is okay, I am all done and just washed the pee-pee away."

Great...Aunt of the Year award, here I come!

I also didn't realize what affect it had on A until yesterday at the beach when she said, "mommy, potty" and ran down to the water and squatted just like her cousin.  Wow...are we in for it!

And a stroll on the beach!

Daily Mom

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Girl and Her Dog

Recently, A has been really into snuggling on her big girl bed in her room at night when we read books, and most nights Preston (our dog) will jump up on the bed to hear the story too. Well apparently Preston looked much better than the pillows last night because A got up, crawled to the end of the bed and snuggled on her puppy dog for three books.

I love my girls!

Daily Mom

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Four No-More

What is that expression...oh yeah, famous last words...well that one came back to bite me in the booty today! So as you can recall I was bragging telling you yesterday about how I have this 4 kids thing down to a system.

Well...the tires came to a screeching halt this morning as I trudged walked down the stairs around 6:04am, holding a still sleepy look A in my arms, and found my mom on the phone. I mean who are you going to be talking to at this hour of the morning. I went through my mental check list...sisters...maybe but not to work yet, best friend...definitely not up yet, me...nope I am here, huh. Then she turned around and I caught the expression on her face along with a few words...eye, blurry, warning sign.

About 2 months ago my mom was having trouble with her eye, unfortunately we were at the beach, 6 hrs away from her eye doctor. After a few phone calls she went to see a specialist in the area and they confirmed her worst fear...a detached retina. A few days and lots of time worrying later, she underwent the procedure that would re-attach her retina. Then she was stuck laying on her side for 45 minutes of every hour, for 2 weeks!!!! I think that would have been the end for me, I would have given up sight in one eye to not have to go through that...but she was a champ and has been on the road to recovery since.

So this morning when she started to get very blurry again in her bad eye, she knew better than to wait.

 This did mean that at 7:22am, when my mom and dad walked out the door (she can't drive till she has her sight back) to go to the doctor (35 minutes away) I became a single mom to 4 kids under the age of 8! I think I tackled the early morning pretty well. We had some yummy waffles with strawberries on the side and milk, then I stripped each kid down, lined them up and sun-blocked them all! Ten minutes later we were all out the door, the two little girls in the double BOB (cannot thank my mom enough for getting this one!), the two big kids on bikes, the dog on my wrist, and tennis shoes on my feet!

After counting the kids, our first stop was to Club 4/5 to drop the 5 year old off...check.

Then it was over to Amanda's garage to collect the eldest's sailing gear and then back to the lagoon to rig up her boat. Not only has it been a while since I have rigged a boat, but I had to do it while keeping an eye on the little two, and yelling at Preston who was not very pleased with being tied to the bench. But I managed.

Sailboat rigged...checked.

Now it was time for strategy (which I knew my sister would have nailed), since today was a racing today.

Me:  "Okay, the wind is coming from the bridge, so you will need to tack to the first mark. Don't forget to take the third mark close, or others' will sneak inside you! Oh, and have fun too!"
Em: "Got it."

Talking strategy...check.

Next, I let the little two loose in the playground as I relocated Preston from the bench to a telephone pole.  As I was finally getting a chance to catch my breath...literally...I heard the whistle followed by, "C Class on the bench" so I grabbed the two little ones off the jungle gym and raced over to help get Em's boat in the water. Have you ever tried to do something that required your strength and attention while simultaneously watching a 1 1/2 year old and a 3 year old?!? I am not going to was pretty hard.  So I decided to break out the snacks early and strapped the little ones back in the stroller, where they sat happily munching on a Grammy Sammy.

Two small children restrained...check.

One boat in the water, ready to sail...check.

Then, after running Preston home (I just couldn't do her too), I raced back and forth between spotting the little ones on the playground, and watching Em sail for the next hour.

After sailing, life calmed down a bit. Em went off with her friend to hang out before her sports class, and I took the two little ones (stroller) and the 6 year old (bike), who was out of Club 4/5 at this time for a run around the point!

Finally we headed back to the house so I could get our picnic lunch together: ham and cheese sandwiches, 3 without mayo, one with, a baggie of strawberries, a few bananas, some juice, and 4 frozen yogurt pops (the Dan-o-nino ones) in the cooler so we could head off to the beach. Just as I am rounding up the three remaining kids and wrestling on swim suits Gigi and Pop P return!

Although I had a blast with the girls this morning I will admit, if I had that many kids to look after on a regular day, there is a 99% chance at least one would get seriously hurt or go missing. So here is to all the mom's who have left a kid somewhere, been looking away as a kid took a tumble, or missed pick-up...I completely understand!

Daily Mom

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Book Look (Snappy Name, Don't You Think!)

So, I think we are finally getting in the swing of life with 4 kids. If any of you actually have 4 kids let me just tell are NUTS! I thought I wanted 4 but after these last few days (and as much as I am blabbing, my sister's kids are VERY good kids) I think A just might be plenty! I know against my better judgment my ovaries will win, but three will be our total, maximum limit!  

Anyway, if you caught my post before about the Library, I was talking about the favorite book A and I found at the library each week, so I thought I would share. This week we are loving Wanda's Roses by Pat Brisson. It has a great message, and is very appropriate for a girl or boy! Hope you get a chance to check it out...literally :) Yes, I was a 4th grade teacher; can you tell by the jokes?
 Product Details
As for me, we have two little girl's napping, one playing with her Briar horses, and another on the beach with a friend. So needless to say my time of leisure is coming to an end, and my afternoon of searching for sea glass with the big girls before some playground time with the little girls is quickly approaching.  

Oh...and since I am sure you have been anxiously awaiting the results, yes, the girls did win the Grand Prize last night at the Hat Dance...a free ice cream cone!!!!

Daily Mom

Monday, August 15, 2011

Holy Hot Cakes!

Do you hear that....pure silence.

Yesterday at noon my oldest sister, who has three kids, dropped them off here to stay for 3 days with Gigi and Pop P...and A and me...and I have not heard this sound since. It is amazing how tiring three extra kids can be.  Don't get me wrong, I love my nieces to bits, but having a 7, 5, and just 3 year old around with my 1 1/2 year old can make life a little crazy. Here are a few highlights...

This morning I took A and her cousin, the 3 year old, to this amazing place called Stay and Play, which is a huge indoor play place for 6 year olds and under.  Since it has been pouring for two days, and I mean the kind of rain that can soak you through and through in about 30 seconds, we have gotten a little stir crazy. So around 9am we took the 5 year old to camp, dropped the 7 year old off at her friend's house and I grabbed the two little ones to go play. After a 20 minute car ride, two detours (sure, I got lost, really can you blame me?), 3 snacks, and two fits we arrived! I turned off the car, crawled in the backseat and unbuckled the two girls, then threw them both on either hip and sprinted inside, trying to doge the rain. Once we got there our eyes lit up...mine saw two very tired girls in an hour, and theirs saw fun, fun, fun! *I am sure you can tell from the picture below...they were going at such a fast pace, I don't even think I got a focused picture!*

Since they were so good, we made a Starbucks run on the way home for a soy late, a vanilla milk, and a chocolate milk. I don't think I have ever been that grateful for a drive through Starbucks in my life!

Then, this afternoon, during blog time naptime I made the three older girls' hats! Yes, you know it...there is also a Kiddie Hat Dance. A little hot glue, some netting, and lots of laughs later, my oldest niece (A's rock star role model) and I had 3 hats that were definitely winning material.

Since, that was not enough, my mom and I decided to take our chances and take the kids for a walk when it looked like the rain was letting up after nap time. We threw the two little ones in the double BOB, and the two big ones hopped in the Jeep double stroller, I grabbed Preston and we were off! After about 5 minutes it started to really rain again, so we cut the kids loose and puddle splashed the whole way home. With 4 soaking wet little girl, two pretty wet adults, and a drenched dog, we cut our losses and stripped them down in the garage before letting them in the house.

Although I would like to say the fun ended there, we ended up cleaning up rabbit pee, dog pee, and little girl pee various times throughout the day...but you know what....I think we can honestly say, today was a day not to be forgotten.

I am off to slump on the couch and have a glass of well-deserved wine before the older 3 make it back from the Hat Dance...

Daily Mom

Saturday, August 13, 2011

My Day Away

There are not a lot of reasons that will take me away from my daughter for the day, but spending time with my sisters and my mom is one of them. Yesterday, we left the kids with the hubbies and headed off to a day of pampering, shopping, chatting, laughing, and bonding.  

After kissing the girls good-bye yesterday morning we did a quick starbucks run, then headed the 30 minutes to the Ocean House where we relaxed, got a massage, sat in the steam room, lounged on chaise loungers overlooking the ocean, and were pampered. After we were completely relaxed, and itching for a little excitement, we walked into town and got to business buying out every Lilly dress they make from size 12 month to 7 years old before heading back to the Ocean House for a yummy lunch, complete with a few glasses of wine. After spending a day like this, there is nothing more that I want for A than for her to have a little sister some day to bond with, giggle with, spend time with, and completely cherish.  

 Since I am assuming none of you have ever been to the Ocean House, okay fine, few of you, I will take a second and try my best to describe the splendor and beauty of this sprawling mansion, overlooking the ocean, which is nestled on the top of a hill watching over a sleepy New England town. The best way to describe the ambiance and lifestyle there is being flung back in time to the Great Gatsby with people strolling on the dunes sipping a cocktail, ladies lunching on the porch in billowing dresses, and a croquet game being played on the lawn by gentlemen dresses in seersucker oxfords. Yet, in all the Ocean House's splendor, it still doesn't hold a candle to the memories we made on our day-away!

Ocean House exterior view
There are some amazing pictures of it on the website if you have a second and want to internet surf :)

Daily Mom

Thursday, August 11, 2011

A Cousin Playdate

Yesterday was filled with fun activities since my sister and her hubby when to Newport for a romantic day and night of fun, and little cousin C stayed with my parents and A and me! We took the girls to the park, played in the house, went to the beach and all in all had a blast. We also decided to break out the water table to let the girls run around and get some beans out. Okay, fine, maybe we were hoping for the best naps possible, but whatever the reason, they LOVE it. Then when the fun was starting to wear off, my mom pulled out this  ridiculously cute flower sprinkler that you attach to the hose. SO. MUCH. FUN!

Check out A's fun quality time with her little cousin, C! Of course, where there is one cousin there is bound to be more, and since A's big cousins didn't want to miss out on the fun, we called them over too! 

A hit the slide...

C wanted to swing...

"Don't leave us with the BABIES!"

"Shush, I am hiding from A"

After all that playing they needed a serious bubble tub!

Breakfast  is always more fun with a cousin!

Then we packed them into the stroller for a walk. A was super cute and shared the cherrios from her snack pack with C!

Then it was on to the water table!

The three closest cousins were having a BLAST!

And out came the sprinkler!

After nap time it was off to the beach! Yes, they are in matching suits :)

C was really into eating sea shells

And A needed a quiet moment reading with Aunt Amanda.

Then, since Daddy came in late last night we decided to take a family trip to the library this morning! How cute are the little carts the kids can push around to collect their books!
Before we could read we had to play!

Then the race was on...


"What, I am being quiet?"

We try to go to the library once a week, so I thought I would share our favorite book from each week. Last week we LOVED Gone With The Wand by Margie Palatini, which is about a fairy godmother who's wand has lost its magic and she needs to get it back. Especially great for girls!
Gone With The Wand

Daily Mom

PS:  I only made it about 6 hrs before I caved and had another ice cream sundae...I mean who starts eating healthier on vacation anyway? That is what home is for! So I am currently putting my "no dessert" rule on hold...indefinitely :)