Sunday, January 31, 2010


Today, Jason presented Remy and Kelby with a toy box he's been working on for Remy's first birthday. Since it wasn't ready until this week, we weren't able to give it to her on her first birthday. He did a great job and the R was my first stab at the now passe craft of decoupage.

After much trepidation, I finally agreed to let Jack bring home the pet rats from his classroom. Most of the kids take turns bringing them home and Jack has been bugging me since September to host the rats at our house. After a few deals made between him and I, it was decided he could bring them home for his birthday weekend.

Let me tell you, this is definitely not my cup of tea. When Mazie was 2 months old, we had an issue with wild rats in our old house. We discovered them a couple of days before Christmas, but thought that was limited to the cool weather and maybe they only wanted to chew up the cord from my iced tea maker and just stay hunkered in the one kitchen cabinet. Nope, the day after Christmas, the varmints ran out from under a chair in the toy room, dashed across the floor and jumped into the toy box. It was after this that we got an exterminator and bleached every single thing in the toy room. Even months later, I was finding footprints in the dust on the upper shelves that were hung on the wall.

For the next 5 years that we lived there, we constantly fought a battle with them in the shed and garage. I was terrified to touch anything or go into these places when it was dark. The pure sneakiness and destructive manner of these critters coupled with the threat of disease and the downright germiness of them just gives me the heebs. Nevermind that they are smart and have the ability to survive even the worst conditions nature can throw their way, they are just purely yucky.

While Jack's teacher tried to sell me on their smarts, their sweet nature and problem solving capabilities, when you boil it down, they are still rats. Rats with that creepy, hairless tail and teeny toenails that feel worse than strange on your skin.

But, they are kinda cute when they eat goldfish crackers.

Saturday, January 30, 2010


A decade ago, I became a mom for the first time.

It was Super Bowl Sunday and there were a ton of people in the waiting room of the hospital, waiting for this kid to come out. Luckily, the game was on all day to occupy the waiting time for the support team. Another thing that occupied them; Dick's Deluxe cheeseburgers. My dad graciously purchased them for those in the waiting room, but not for me. I couldn't have any food because of the medications I was on. Then, the people dared to come check on me with cheeseburger scent emanating from their mouths...bastards.

Then, at 9:38pm, Jack burst into the world. It was beyond awesome. My mom had my camera and took some once in a lifetime pictures, but had the ability to leave my vag out of them. They captured the beautiful color of Jack's umbilical cord and his screaming, flailing body covered with vernix. They are my most treasured pictures.

Ten years later, Jack has presented me with many parenting challenges, but I'm happy to partake in all of them. He's my baby boy and always will be. I'm pretty sure boys have special connections with their mommies...and I'm happy to be one of them.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


Wow, how this year has flown by for our lives with Remy. Hard to imagine that a year has gone by already. I remember the quietness when she finally emerged. She wasn't making a sound and wasn't squawking or curling her hands and legs up in the panicky reflex that most babies exhibit when they are first introduced to life outside their mommies. I was scared and exhilarated all at the same time. I knew she shouldn't be quiet or still, yet she was. I was instantly worried for my sister thinking that if there was something even remotely wrong, this wasn't fair for her.

Luckily, Remy was true to herself and decided to do things by her own rules. She lingered in my sisters' womb long past her due date and then decided that she would transition into this world at her own pace. We have learned that Remy is a strong girl with a strong will and (in our opinions), so so smart. This triple-threat would certainly have really made her daddy grin with pride. I'm sure he would never have thought she would be anything different.

I'm thankful she's in our lives. She's teaching all of us little lessons here and there, the most important at this point is to cherish the gift that children are.

Sunday, December 27, 2009


Smallish victories. Does this qualify as one of those? Maybe, in the scope of a lifetime, but this week, this was a major victory. We were able to get Mazie's room cleaned. I really wish I had taken a before picture of her room because it was worthy of an episode of the A&E series, Hoarders.

The large black bag is representative of one of my worst parenting moves today. Mazie spent nearly 4 hours cleaning her room today. I made her a list, told her what to pick up next, tried to encourage her to accomplish it herself. She didn't throw tantrums or balk at doing the work like she usually does. I figured the promise of a trip to Target to blow her Christmas gift cards was what was driving her to getting it cleaned. She was very compliant and would occasionally bring a small stack of trash (papers) out to me and say things like, "Better get back in there mom!". I was totally impressed, but didn't make periodic checks because I thought she was being responsible and doing the work.

At 5pm (I gave her a deadline), I went in to check out her work. I was anticipating greatness. Instead, her room looked like the equivalent of a plate full of meatloaf, mashed potatoes and peas. At first arranged artfully on a plate, but then rearranged to appear that it had been eaten with the occasional pea thrown to the dog. This is what transpired over the 4 hours she spent in her room. She just moved a couple of things around. And the trash (mostly Kleenex and what I call 'crazy papers'), dirty clothes and stuffed animals I directed her to pick up repeatedly were still in the same spot. When asked earlier if she had picked-up the trash and had all the dirty clothes back by the washing machine, she said "Yes..." in the nicest way. What the fuck was she doing for 4 hours??

That's when the rage set in. This is not something I've been after her to do for a few days, couple of weeks or even a month, this is a project I have been asking her to take on for nearly 6 months now. I realize she's only 7, but she's smart and is able to do the work - she just chooses not to. Anyway, back to the rage... I went and got that huge black trash bag and began stuffing anything in sight into the bag. As you can see, it's packed to the brim. And that wasn't even the bulk of what was laying on her floor. After I settled myself down a bit, I made Jason come in and help us while Mazie and I finished picking everything up.

As for the things in the black bag - well, that's going to be Mazie's project this week. I'm crossing my fingers.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


Wow, I really feel like a putz, a slacker, a person who can't complete a task...

While I was like a steam train for a while on this project, somewhere life got in the way. While I spent time on the computer for the last 2 months, I just didn't have any photos really to post. Even the batteries died in my cameras. I had to charge them just to take this photo of my kids the other day.

This was a fun day. My job at REI had ended, the kids were out of school and we were finally able to spend some time together. So, we got all gussied-up and set out to take some photos to give as gifts and to send out as this year's Christmas card. Of course, I'm completely behind and I'll be surprised if I get them all sent out. Fingers crossed!

In a moment of bliss, the kids actually decided to like each other for the photo. We took this on the Milton Trail and I love how it turned-out.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Saturday, October 31, 2009


The kids at Halloween - Mazie the Tooth Fairy, Jack the Surfer and Remy the Flower. "Remy the Flower" sounds like a preschool mafia name.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Tonight, Remy got to come spend the night with us. She's wearing a yarn wig that Mazie had in her dress up clothes. She didn't hate it!

Later, Mazie and Remy took a bath together. Remy had so much fun splashing Mazie...