Tuesday, November 18, 2014

First sentence

November 18, 2014
A Tuesday night at the dinner table

"Mommy, more grapes."

Sunday, November 16, 2014

These are the moments I will hold onto

Some days are not great.

You're stuck in traffic, get a flat tire, stub your toe.
You're late to work, lose your keys, burn your tongue.
Your kids won't stop fighting and you burn dinner.

But then it's bedtime and you look up and see this.
Your kids snuggling in the rocker together reading.
Your older son reading to your younger son.
And you let go of all the other stuff.

This. This is what matters.
These are the moments I will hold onto on the bad days and remember that it wasn't such a bad day after all.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Halloween 2014

I remember the days when Halloween was one night. It was so exciting to get dressed up in costume, stay out after bedtime and trick or treat for candy. We wore plastic masks from K-Mart, we tore a pillow case off our bed and spent the night stuffing it with candy. Nowadays there are so many activities leading up to the actual holiday. This year we went to a Halloween fair, a Halloween party, a town trick or treat event and a school parade all before the actual holiday rolled around. It's hard to believe my kids hadn't completely lost interest by the time we finally went trick or treating on Halloween night!!

I am torn between wanting my kids to participate in all of these fun activities and resisting the urge to over indulge. Now there are endless events, parades, fairs, parties, and play dates in the weeks before. There are monogrammed fabric treat bags and handmade costumes that take weeks to prepare. With Facebook posts and Pinterest pages, it's hard not to get caught up in the excessiveness of holidays and birthdays and other important events. I am definitely guilty of spending way too much time googling "original costume ideas" and "healthy Halloween snacks".  So I made a conscious effort and  tried to find a balance this year. We went to the costume party at our neighbor's house and the fair at our local elementary school but I decided to skip the playdate I planned and on Halloween night we skipped the trick or treating downtown on Main St. and instead just did our neighborhood. At first I felt guilty skipping things but we did so much and my kids had a great Halloween.

Nathan chose a Wolverine costume which I think is so funny because he has no idea who Wolverine is, he just liked the costume. Ryan had the choice between two hand me down costumes. He chose Superman for our neighbor's costume party and a Cheeseburger for Halloween day. We had so much fun trick or treating and had a perfect Fall night to walk around our neighborhood. We met up with two of our neighbors and between the three families, we had 5 adults, 6 kids, 2 cups of tea and a mug of coffee. It was cold out!!

I knew Nathan would have fun but I wasn't sure how long Ryan would last, Surprisingly, he lasted the whole night, It took him maybe two houses to catch on. Approach door, look cute, get candy, move onto next house. The kids had so much fun and I love reliving the fun and excitement of Halloween through them. It was a great night and I can't wait to do it again next year. In the end, we had a blast and although at times I felt a little overwhelmed with how many events we actually attended and how many times we got the kids dressed up in their costumes,  I would definitely consider this year's holiday a success.

Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


For the past few months I had been worried that Ryan wasn't talking. I have videos of Nathan reciting his alphabet and counting to 10 at this age but other than Mama and Dada, Ryan wasn't saying much at all and even those two words were few and far between. I wouldn't be concerned except he seemed so frustrated, sometimes even angry, that nobody could understand what he was saying. He has been babbling for a long time, the problem was that nobody knew what he was trying to actually say. And since nobody could understand him when he babbled, he started hitting and scratching to get his point across. And that's just not fun for anyone.

But in just the past couple of weeks, he has started saying so much more. He is a different kid now, happier and more carefree and now I can't get him to stop talking! At night when I put him to bed, I can often hear him upstairs for up to an hour, "talking" to himself in his crib.

This blog serves as a baby book for me so occasionally I like to list "stats" that I don't want to forget. So, at two days shy of being 20 months old, I've compiled a list of his current vocabulary.

Thank you
All done
Woof woof
Quack quack
Nai Nai (Grandmother in Mandarin)
Ye Ye (Grandfather in Mandarin)
Ge Ge (Big Brother in Mandarin)
Choo choo

And a few that aren't quite there yet but so damn cute I had to list them...
G-fish - goldfish crackers
Beesh - toothbrush
Tuck - truck

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

School Pictures

I don't think these pictures could sum up Nathan and Ryan's personalities any better.

Nathan, perfectly posing with a stack of Encyclopedias?!?! Yes!!
Ryan, deciding to lay on the ground and not sit at all?? Yes!!

They are all so cute, how do I choose?

Back to school

I accepted a maternity leave coverage at school this fall so I'm back in the first grade. I went from being the student teacher in a class with two other adults to the lead teacher in a class by myself. The adjustment has been... challenging. I barely survived the first day of school and by 2:45 felt like Id been hit by a truck. (I may have even cried in the bathroom during my lunch break, wondering by I ever thought I could do this.) We're almost two months in and things have definitely settled down in the classroom. Our routines are set, the kids know what to expect each day and I have grown to love them... even the "difficult" ones. I love, love, LOVE being in the classroom.

As a result of me working though, life at home is crazy. I wake the boys at 6:15, get them dressed and fed and out the door by 7:30. I drop them off at daycare then head right to school. After teaching for 6 hours, I usually stay 2 hours late to prep for the next day. This means I don't get back to the boys until 4:30, sometimes 5. This gets us home just in time for dinner, baths and bed. Once they're in bed, I clean up the dishes, pack the lunches for the next day, shower and dry my hair then crash into my bed at 10:30.

I struggle everyday with whether or not I'm doing the right thing. I feel like I'm failing at both jobs. I can't commit fully to the teaching because I have to get home and take care of the boys. And I'm not fully committed to the boys because I'm not with them all day!

I have exactly 5 weeks left at this job. I have been looking for something to do next but there's not much out there.  Part of me is relieved because being able to wake up and not have to go, go, go sounds amazing right now. But part of me is getting anxious because I know I want to work, and that I will go crazy if I'm home full-time.  Should I work or should I stay home? It's an internal question that I still don't know the answer to. A question I'm sure most moms ask themselves everyday.  For now, I am trying to enjoy my time in the classroom and learn as much as I can and then enjoy my quality time with the boys in the evenings and on the weekends. Only time will tell what my next step will be.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Mr. Sun

Every morning on the way to school, we drive down a long windy road. Every morning, as long as the sun is shining, it shines right in Ryan's eyes for the entire length of that road. And for the entire length of that road, Ryan screams and shrieks and shields his eyes from the sun.

I am starting to think he is part Vampire.

And I am also starting to consider taking a detour.