Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Story Time, Stride Rite, and Rice Krispie Treats

Have I mentioned how much I love Story Time at the library?  I am pretty sure I have because I really do.  I continue-- like, each week-- to be amazed and annoyed that I never took any of the other kids to Story Time.  It's basically a meat market for moms-- so many friend hook ups happening, but not really for me because I am by far the oldest person there, and Dorothy is one of the oldest kids-- or, she's the oldest kid without a baby sibling anyway.  But 5 or 10 years ago, I am sure I could have made a pack of mom BFFs.

This week after the library-- the theme of the day was boats, something Dorothy was not too jazzed about until she mad the craft, which was a cute little paper sailboat that she could"sail" on a blue butcher paper lake--we made the day even more fun by going shoe shopping.

Dorothy tried on every pair of shoes at Stride Rite, and I was really hoping she;d go with these machine washable (!!!!!) See Kai Run sandals.
Instead, she was literally jumping for joy to discover a pair of Phibians in her size
They match nothing she owns, which is awesome.
I think I bought too many cuties in my desire to eat healthy and lose weight. But, I mean, I could eat this entire basket and still be eating less than I was before the Whole30.
Speaking of eating, we made Rice Krispie treats, and they were all gone in like 4 hours.
I am in love with how seriously Cooper takes his work.  He's the sweetest. Also, Dorothy wore that headband all day, like it was NBD.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Weekend Catch Up

Saturday morning, I got up early (after a week of getting up early, which was actually pretty rough) to judge a paper competition for the National History Day state tournament.  I cannot say enough good things about this whole ordeal.  The students in my group were in middle school, and they wrote amazing little papers with copious endnotes and appendices and primary sources-- so impressive.  My fellow judges were lovely oder women who were historians and teachers, and we got to interview each author for 15 minutes, which was just about the cutest thing that has ever happened in my life, and I live with 4 really cute kids.  Remind me to volunteer next year, and you should see about programs in your state, too.

But!  Before I left, Harry came in from walking the dog all fake weepy to ell us that he somehow tripped and his Under Armor sandal just up an flew into the sewer.  I think he wanted us to not be pissed off and to immediately jump on Zappos and flush another $30 down the toilet.  But then we surprised him and were just totally indifferent about the whole thing.  He did not know what to make of our reaction.  We were like well, dude, your birthday is in June.  Maybe you can get more sandals then.  **shrug**  Chipper little Jack, though, suggested they use a fishing pole to get it out, and I snapped this pic on my way to campus.  (Turns out, they needed to attach a straightened-out wire hanger to the end of Ben's hockey stick to get both the shoe AND the fishing pole, but they had a ton of fun doing this).
Meanwhile, I was so impressed with myself for being on time and dressed like a grown up that I took a picture of my reflection right there on the street because my vanity knows no bounds.
I came home to a Flinstonian platter of ribs (3 racks!) that everyone demolished, especially Harry.
I have been nervous about Sunday for quite awhile, ever since Ben signed up to coach Dorothy and Cooper's soccer team, because their first game overlapped with Harry's first Little League game, which ben was also coaching, meaning I would have to coach soccer for half the game.  Which, seriously, is a terrible idea.  I have never even played soccer.  Luckily, a dad stepped in to help me out, and the Rockets were kicking some major ass when Ben got there, at which time, I retired to the playground with Jack and my excellent book while Harry jumped into the middle of a rowdy football game with kids he had never met before because he will never not play football.  (Also, his team lost 13-3, but Harry stole a base and got a run and an RBI).

Cooper and Dorothy loved soccer.
After the game, Cooper came running to the play ground brandishing a bag of Skinny Pop and a Capri Sun and screamed, "I scored a GOAL in my FIRST GAME and I got this snack FOR FREE!"
Against our better judgement, we took the kids out for dinner after the game.

It was, um, loud.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Jack's 9th Birthday Sleep UNDER

You guys!  A Sleep UNDER birthday party is GENIUS and ideal for kids who want to invite the whole class, which would be really unwieldy for a sleepover (not that the whole class could come, but still, we had 9 which is more than I would like to have for a sleepover.)

Friday, April 21, 2017

Birthday party day. Gulp!

Okay, universe.  I need some positive vibes that Jack's birthday party won't be a disaster and some even more positive vibes that Sunday soccer won't be a disaster because BEN IS COACHING LITTLE LEAGUE AND LEAVING ME TO COACH THE SOCCER TEAM.  Can I get a what the eff?  I think everyone knows what kind of an athlete I am.  WHICH IS NOT AN ATHLETE AT ALL.

Jack is having a movie party in our basement tonight that Cooper really wants to go to, but Cooper is not invited because he can not act like a rational human being around the older boys and their friends.  So.  That's going to be SO FUN.

Last night he cried for over an hour when we asked him what he wanted to do during Jack's party.  We gave him 4 choices:  watch a movie upstairs with us-- any movie he wanted, go play mini golf with ben and Dorothy, go see Lego Batman at the dollar theater, go see Beauty and the Beass at the regular theater.  THOSE ALL SOUND REALLY FUN TO ME.  But they all made him sob.

He thinks he might deign to watch The Secret Life of Pets with me and Ben and Dorothy, but his heart is not in it.  He wants to be downstairs with the big boys where he will terrorize them and scream and make Jack hulk out.  It's hard to be the littlest brother, apparently.

I'll keep you posted.  Wish us luck.

Best outfit ever:
Really disturbing hot dog (that was 70-calories of pure enjoyment):




Thursday, April 20, 2017

POTY Podcast #4 is up,

and you should definitely go listen to it.  You can hear it on our website, on Soundcloud, or on iTunes.

I have to tell you I like my early morning coffee time better when I am writing my book, not grading essays.  But I am still looking forward to it every morning.  I think that's because I set the coffee pot to brew at 4:45, so it's ready for me when I stumble into the kitchen and grab a mug 15 minutes later.

 Jack had his adorable biography day in third grade. Not to be out done by his Ditka-obsessed older brother, Jack was Vince Lombardi.  It was adorable.

 I had to take Harry to the doc for a weird rash on his neck, and we realized that my bullet journal is the perfect place to play an endless game of dots.  Also, I REALLY HOPE HE DOESN'T HAVE PSORIASIS like me.
 Lombardi in action!

What are you still doing here?  You should be SUBSCRIBING to our PODCAST.  And also rating it because you love us, admit it.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Today started off great. And then.

Today had so much potential/

Dorothy was accessorized like mad for preschool.
 Jack baked his chocolate chip cherry cookies-- part of the dinner menu he planned from his new cookbook-- before school, meaning we would have time to go to a park after school.
 And his dinner plan sounded pretty delicious:
 (This was AMAZING).

 I achieved PONYTAIL NIRVANA-- seriously, this was a fabulous ponytail.
 We had a blast at the park and had the place to ourselves because it was drizzling and everybody else is a wimp.
 Dorothy requested a selfie where we made our scared faces.  And!  I went to the dentist yesterday after a 3 year absence (I have cavities.  Several.  Shut up) and my teeth are SO WHITE AND LOVELY. (My hygienist used a water pick, and nothing about my mouth is yellow and I LOVE IT.  Red lipstick here I come).
 We ate cookies in the rain.
 We even tried the Starbucks unicorn frappe.  (NOT IMPRESSED)
 Also, bedraggled.
 Jack's inner was AMAZING.
 I ate it aaaaaaaaaall.
And then.  Dorothy peed her pants.  Beatrix peed on Dorothy's floor.  My KitchenAid mixer whisk broke and I got potatoes all over my face and hair.  And Harry shoved Cooper on his big wheel and ended up ramming the handlebars into his nose, and Cooper came inside screaming and dripping blood everywhere and crying because he got punched in the face with a bike, and I screamed, too, when I saw him, which was as calming as you might imagine, and then Beatrix ate his blood off the floor so she's basically Cujo now.

Eff.

As we drove home drinking our trendy drinks and blasting "Born This Way" with all the kids singing along and Dorothy chair dancing and all the windows down and the moon roof open, Harry suggested we all watch a move and snuggle after dinner, and I thought oh my gosh this day canNOT get any better.  AND BOY WAS I RIGHT.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Picking up some of the balls I dropped

Before the miscarriage, I was on top of my shit.  Remember when I posted about all of the shit I was doing simultaneously?  Ugh.  I hate old smug me.  I still haven't picked up all of the balls I dropped, either.  Part of this is because without a baby-imposed deadline, I have more time to prep my classes, and the urgency that was driving me is not there anymore.

Now? I am just not quite on my game.  I have even stopped reading books.  I have a shelf full of overdue library books and keep staring at my phone during free time, which is actually just time I should be doing other things. I might need to go on a technology diet.  Seriously, I am so spacey and sluggish.

Case in point:  Ben called to chat while I was taking the little kids to school yesterday, and he said casually, "Oh, you should have made plans to  bring Jack's birthday snacks to school today."  I was like OH SHIT because I did in fact make plans to take Jack's birthday treats to school.  Before break.  Which I apparently FORGOT ALL ABOUT.  I thought about just getting donuts of a DQ cake, which is what most kids with working parents bring.  But then I was like no I am not just a working parent, I am also an overachiever with fucked up self confidence issues, so Dorothy and I ran to the nearest store (Wal Mart-- I HATE Wal Mart) and bought horrible things like Crisco.
 Then we ran home as fast as we could and slapped together these Cubs cakes to deliver to school.  I didn't even let them dry before I frosted them because that's how I live my life these days.  GAH.
 Jack is really into his art.
I am completely in love with this nude of Dorothy
But!  All of this is fluff because I really want to talk about the Whole30.  I did it religiously in February even though I was PREGNANT, and I loved it and didn't even think about cheating (fantasized about it, maybe).  But this time?  Or, I should say LAST TIME since I had to start over today?  I just can't keep my shit together.  Like, I will do OK for breakfast and lunch and then fall apart.  Or I will not even try, like this past weekend when I ate Twizzler after Twizzler in the car and and drank EVERYDAY.

The thing is, I can't figure out WHY.  Any insights?  According to Gretchen Rubin's Four Tendencies, I am an upholder, which means I meet internal and external expectations.  Do I just not WANT to do Whole 30?  So it's not an internal expectation?  I have an accountability group to help hold me to external expectations, but usually, I can do things that matter to me without the support of others.  And I LIKED the diet.  I LIKED eating so many servings of veggies, and I liked losing weight.  It's so frustrating.

I got back on the horse yesterday (and then ate 3 Reese's PB cups (minis) that I brought to my staff meeting), and plan to do the Whole26, stopping on my first annual 39th birthday.  I think I want to succeed, so what gives?

Monday, April 17, 2017

Easter Weekend, Part 2: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JACK!

It blows my mind that Jack is nine, which I know is the ultimate parenting cliche thing to say, but it wouldn't be a cliche if it wasn't a popular sentiment, right?

But seriously, you guys.  This day feels really current to me, like Third Eye Blind, the release of the third Harry Potter book, and the movie Catch Me If You Can (speaking of me being SO FREAKING OLD, watching Veep last night was like reuniting with old friends, and that's exactly how my grandpa used to feel about MASH).

Before we could get into the birthday stuff, Jack got excited about Easter.  Boys are so weird, by the way.  Never in my entire life would I have been excited to get a bag of balls.

 Cooper immediately gathered all of the ring pops and relived his pacifier days.
 So hobbity.
 People were posting all these glam pics of their Easter morning on FB, but this was me in yesterdays hair and jammies (until about 10:30, actually).
 Muddy egg hunt in jammies.  (The EB had to set an alarm to hide eggs outside because it rained all damn night.  The EB LOVES THAT).
 She found zero eggs, but Harry gave her a few.
 Mid hunt forced photo:
 The EB knew she would love this fiary garden that doesn;t actually have real plants, so it can't be killed.
 FINALLY Jack got to attack the huge pile of presents.
 He got the gold Cubs jersey that the team wore at their first home game, and Harry almost expired of jealously on the spot.
 He got a few other things, too, but the art set was the thing he really wanted, and he was as thrilled as we thought he'd be.  He's the sweetest kid.  He got a cookbook in his Easter basket, and he is counting the days until Wednesday when he can make dinner.
 Modeling:
 My parents tapped into his love of all things Bob's Burgers-- big hit.
 Blowing out his candles.  He is always relieved they aren't trick candles after this incident. #POTY
 We played Mad Libs for quite some time-- my kids LOOOOOOVE Mad Libs maybe more than I did, even, and I really liked them.
 Semi-cleaned up for Easter.
 It is impossible to be crabby when you are anticipating a huge meal and drinking proseco in the morning.
 Huntley was just so damn cute curled up on his chair.
 Accidental twinning.
 Cooper lived on Orange Crush, which he found in the basement fridge approximately 3 seconds after we got to my parents' house.
 OMG the ham GOOD.  My mom used this recipe.  As expected, Pioneer Woman knows her way around an Easter ham.
 Counting down the seconds until lunch was over and she could eat her chocolate bunny.
 The post-lunch nap we all wanted to take.
 The bunny came to our house, too!
 And the egg hunt was even more exciting because of all the dog poop!