Friday, June 28, 2013

Such language!

I'll be the first to admit that I have a pretty bad potty mouth at times, just never around my kids, because I really think they should be sheltered from that as long as possible. In all honesty, I don't know that I'd mind them knowing bad words in general, but right now they're too young to know how to use them so they're not hurtful towards others or ugly. Not that there's a good way to make a curse word "pretty" but anyway... And little kids saying naughty words is just too shocking and ugly in itself. So shelter, it is. But it's hard!

I know Aidan knows curse words, and just recently found out that Logan knows curse words as well, thanks to the bus. Apparently there was an incident at school where he told a friend how to spell a curse word (not sure which one, either hell or shit probably) because Logan refused to say it. When that got back to the teacher, he got so upset because he didn't want to know these words, but he couldn't help it because older kids on the bus were saying them.

His teachers sort of empowered him to be a "bad language monitor" so to speak, so if he heard other kids saying bad words, he could feel comfortable telling an adult (especially since his teacher said she could tell it made him so uncomfortable). Problem not really solved, but we moved on and still no bad words uttered from either of my boys' mouths under my watch, at least.

And then one of his parents (ahem, not me) dropped the f-bomb quietly, casually and completely accidentally last night, right in front of both Aidan and Logan. Oops! I gave this particular parent a serious stare-down and silently hoped that the slip went unnoticed. No such luck. Logan looked at me with eyes as big as saucers and whispered "Daddy just said the F-word!" We explained that it was a mistake, and he was sorry. But adults can and do choose to use adult language like that, and that still doesn't make it okay for kids to say those types of bad words.

Teachable moment or parenting fail? Probably both. Fortunately Logan (my overly sensitive one) didn't get upset about it. But that was definitely the first time they heard that word out of one of our mouths. I hope their innocence wasn't shattered too badly.


But even I'm guilty of exposing them to inappropriate language when I do something innocent like turn on the freakin' car radio. All of a sudden I hear Ke$ha talking about her coochie (sometimes that part is censored, sometimes not. I can never tell which version I'll get until that word pops up). I immediately changed the station to a song called "Detachable Penis." First of all, what?! And second of all, that station got changed in a hurry as well, because both boys like to read the name of each song that comes on. And then this morning, I turn the station again, and start jamming to J-Lo and Ja Rule's "I'm Real," when bam! The n-word. Seriously? Thank heavens I had already dropped Aidan and Logan off. But what happened to decency on the public airwaves or whatever? Geez! XM, get it together.


Although I guess if a few bad words is all they get out of some of those songs, I'll be lucky. Because the inappropriateness doesn't stop at bad words. I'd really rather not explain what Daft Punk and Pharrell mean by "Get Lucky" or what "Blurred Lines" Robin Thicke is singing about...

Sheltering kids is hard, man! It's a balance between protecting them from inappropriate things yet carefully exposing them to the world gradually on an age-appropriate level so they're not totally naive. And I'm not sure I've found that balance yet.


PS: for the record, and on the off chance that Adam is reading this, I wasn't mad enough to hate him forever, because it could have just as easily been me to let a bad word slip. I'm just glad it wasn't me.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Summer break is FLYING by

On Friday, I had a moment of panic, realizing that we were already 2 weeks through our 5-week summer break from school.

We were sitting at the pool having an impromptu pizza dinner, hanging out with our neighbors and a friend from Logan's class. The kids were having a blast, and I was totally enjoying the evening. A great way to celebrate the first official day of summer.


As I was chatting with Logan's classmate's mom, she said that open house is on July 11 (school starts on July 15). I had my moment of panic, and her response was more, "Only 3 weeks of summer left, yay! Back to "normal"! But in my mind, I'm thinking OMG only 3 weeks left, oh no!!! There's so much fun stuff we still need to do, and it seems like 2 weeks just slipped by without much notice. In 3 WEEKS I'll have to deal with packing lunches, homework, and much less flexibility to spend time enjoying ourselves outside, going the pool, and hanging with friends on any random weekday we choose. Panic, I tell you. (It's the homework that gets me, if I'm being honest. Adds so much stress to the evenings.)

Fortunately though, we've already checked two things off our summer bucket list. Last Monday, we went to a Durham Bulls game with my work. Had hot dogs, got cotton candy, ate ice cream sandwiches, saw an awesome home run, and stayed up past bedtime. Still only made it to the top of the 3rd inning (damn these 7:05 games, so not good for little ones!) but it was a great night. Lorelai cracked us up because she kept asking where the cow was. We would all tell her it was a bull, but she couldn't grasp the concept. By the end of the night, it was a "bull cow" but she couldn't let the whole cow thing go.

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And then on Saturday at 9:20am as we were eating breakfast, Adam just happened to check movie times and saw there was a 10am showing of Monsters U. We scrambled to eat and get dressed and made it to the theater just in time. I was so proud of us for being so spontaneous and fun (that's two days in a row!). We even hit up the food court afterwards for some lunch. Cool parents for the win!

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It was a great movie. Unfortunately I missed several parts because Lorelai had to go to the bathroom literally 4 times, which never happens at home. It was her first movie in a theater, so I think she was just antsy and wanted to walk around. But all things considered, she did really well.

We rounded out the top-notch "make the most of summer" weekend with a cookout at my Aunt and Uncle's house--another very summer thing to do.

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But I still can't shake this feeling of not enough time. Maybe it's part of an overall sense of time flying that's really getting to me. Aidan turns 9 in a month, and Lorelai turns 3. Logan's not far behind them when he turns 7 in September. Kind of blows my mind every time another year rolls around for each of them.

In the same way my mind jumps 3 weeks ahead to homework and lunches and our typical frantic evenings, it also jumps years ahead to middle school, high school, my baby going to kindergarten, driver's licenses, boyfriends/girlfriends, and my kids just plain old growing up and not needing me. Wow, this post just to a turn...

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(Hey look, I even just so happen to have pictures to semi-illustrate my point! My daughter is almost 3, going on 16...and it freaks me out!)

I don't know. I guess the thing I need to learn (and I keep going back to this) is to enjoy the moments we have now, and try not to worry about the future until it gets here. Technically we only have 3 more weeks, but on the other hand, that's 3 whole weeks! Look at that, the glass just got half-full again. :)

(And now I'm off to order an ice cream maker so we can check off one more item on our summer bucket list.)

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


As a continuation of our perfect day strawberry picking (way way way back when--belated post alert), we took full advantage of all of the other fun things the farm had to offer. This is the same place we went to for the corn maze last fall, and they had a lot of the same things in their family fun park so we knew we were in for a morning of fun.

Aside from the actual strawberries (okay, maybe more than the strawberries), the thing I was most excited about was the baby goats!

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Holy crap, these things were so stinkin' cute. And really soft. The kids loved being able to pet and feed them. The consensus among them was that the brown was was the cutest, I guess because he was different than the others. But I'm not playing favorites--I'd take any one of them home with me. :)

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Another highlight was the tractor ride through the field. Adam even rode this time since he missed out in the fall (you'll have to take my word for it--no photos since he was way behind us in the back).

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While we waited for our turn on the tractor, we (as in, everyone else except me--I didn't want to show anyone up with my mad football throwing skillz, ha! Sarcasm!) played football.

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Then there was the ummm...combine? I'm so not a farm girl. But whatever it was, it was huge and cool-looking, and attached to a huge bumpy slide. Good times, despite Lorelai's sore bum from a rough exit. Yeah, she only braved the slide once. Aidan and Logan managed to make it down several times before they'd had enough and wanted to try (fake) driving heavy machinery instead.

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Like last time, we hit up the pedal carts. But this time Lorelai even got in on the action, and did a great job trying to keep up with Aidan and Logan, who were maniacs on the course. No doubt taking after their daddy, who had quite an impressive couple of laps.

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I'm not sure who won the duck race. Actually, I'm pretty sure it was a 3-on-1 team effort against another little boy playing. :)

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To top it all off, there was a bounce house. For a girl who only asked for two things for Christmas--chicken nuggets and a bounce house (technically a chicken nugget bounce house, weird!)--she was in heaven, right along with the boys who would bounce for days if they had the chance.

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It took her a minute to get up the courage to go in with the big kids, but once she did, we had trouble getting her out. Aidan and Logan were so good in there with her, holding her hands so she would feel safe to jump. Lots of heart-melting going on for sure.

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I totally loved this place, and can't wait to go back in the fall and again next year during strawberry season. Such a perfect family activity. We all left with huge smiles on our faces and great memories to cherish. I'll say it one more time: the day was perfect.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to the best dad I know.


Adam's day was spent sleeping in, lounging on the couch for most of the day, eating burritos for dinner, and going to the pool, with a grand finale of the True Blood Season premier tonight. In other words, perfect. Adam loves nothing if not a low-key day at home with his family, and we aim to please.

And I'd be remiss to not mention some of the awesome gifts the kids picked out, including badass socks with mustaches, some of his favorite treats (combos! root beer! reese's cups!), and a hula hoop picked out especially by Lorelai (um, for Lorelai...but she's a sneaky little thing who insisted that it was for Daddy when I told her we weren't shopping for her, we were shopping for him. Ha!). They were so excited to parade in with his gifts.

He's lucky to have such awesome kids, and we're all lucky that he's such a great dad, full of love.


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Home sweet home

On Monday morning, I kissed my loves goodbye, went to the office for a while, then hopped on a plane to Boston for two full days of meetings.

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I got home late last night, after the kids were all in bed, so that was three full nights away from them. It was tough. Thank goodness for facetime to make me feel a little closer, but I missed them so much. And they missed me.


Knowing that Lorelai woke up in the middle of the night (and at daycare nap time) crying for me, and I couldn't be there to comfort her, was enough to put my mommy guilt into overdrive. And I didn't even have my husband, exotic locations, or the ability to relax and sleep in to distract me from the guilt. It was no vacation, for sure.

Add to that the information overload, two really bad nights' sleep in an unfamilar/uncomfortable hotel bed, the rainy not-warm weather, and the fact that Adam was gone from Friday to Sunday on his annual Sand Soccer trip...I was SO ready to be home with my family.


I used to travel fairly frequently back in the day (pre-kids) for my previous job and it was no big deal. It was exciting, actually. Visiting new places, eating out, staying in fancy hotels. But these days, I honestly don't know how Adam does it all the time. (Okay fine, Legal Seafood on the company's dime wasn't so bad, ha!)

When I went into Lorelai's room this morning, she pushed her hair out of her eyes, looked up at me and said "My mommy? Are you really here?" And then wouldn't let go.

Home is where the heart is, and I have so many more hearts at home now that I need, and need me. Home sweet home.

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Sunday, June 9, 2013

Summer 2013 Bucket List

Since our summer break has officially begun, the kids and I put together our 2013 summer bucket list this weekend.

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There are several repeats from last year because there are just things we do that are a given (the beach, duh) and ones we really liked last year (playing in the rain), so the boys wanted them on the list. But we did come up with a couple of new ones, and I hope to get creative with at least one new one each year.

Like last year, it's not long and crazy because we only have 5 weeks and most of these will have to happen on the weekend, but it's a good way to focus on enjoying the summer and not treat it just like any other weekday/weekend. Since let's face it--it's really not that different from school weeks or trackouts minus the homework, of course.

But we're ready for some fun in the sun. Summer 2013, bring it on!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

School's out! Finally!

Friday was the last day of school, woohoo!

I can't tell you how excited I am that this school year is finally over. Not gonna lie, it's been stressful. More than double the homework between the two boys (Aidan just had SO much), plus projects, Aidan's first year taking's seemed like one LONG year.

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Are you serious? Are we really done?!

But both Aidan and Logan were champs and made it through with flying colors. And good grades. :)

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The fine print: technically these last day photos were taken on 6/6, thanks to Tropical Storm Andrea raining out any potential photos on their actual last day. Score one for mom for thinking ahead though!
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Another dramatic transformation for Aidan. Maybe it's just the hair. :)

I can't believe the progress Logan made this year. Sometimes I forget he was only in Kindergarten, and didn't even know how to read or spell at the beginning of the year. I did have high hopes for him since he's one of the older Kindergartners (missed the cutoff by 1 week) and he proved me right. His reading level (mClass level I) is on level for end of 1st grade, he's good at and enjoys math, he's done some impressive creative writing, and his teacher said he was the only one in his class to get all 12 questions correct on test of analogies for AIG screening. That was only one part of the AIG screening so we won't know until after more testing next year whether he qualifies, but we'll see! Regardless, we're just so proud of how far he came. The transformation is nothing short of impressive.

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And Aidan. Oh, Aidan. Despite the, um, issues I had with his teacher...he did great, as always. A Honor Roll in the first and last quarters, and A/B Honor Roll in the middle two quarters. He studied hard all year, and hopefully rocked his first-ever EOGs. (Grades don't come back until October because it's a new set of tests so they have to analyze the results.)

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Gotta be honest, my frustrations with his teacher have been a huge part of what's made this year more stressful for me. Thankfully, Aidan was mostly insulated from that. He never saw me get stabby over the numerous overly!!!! exuberant!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! emails with bad grammar (exhibit A, exhibit B). He genuinely liked his teacher. For that, I'm so grateful, because having that connection with her helped motivate him to work hard and succeed. Despite any of her other faults, I give her the utmost credit for her enthusiasm for teaching and affection for her students.

The unfortunate complication is that we were offered the "exciting opportunity" to loop with her since she's being moved up to 4th grade (can you believe it?!?). He really wants her again, but Adam and I just can't do it. My sanity can't handle reading another dreadful email, and I don't want any more project grades to suffer based on her lack of expertise (or basic logic) when it comes to rubric grading. I feel bad that we're denying Aidan this opportunity, but I'm looking forward to starting fresh. As far as he knows, we're parting on good terms, and that's all that matters.

Now that Kindergarten and 3rd grade are behind us, we can all focus on a glorious (but waaaaay too short) 5 weeks of break enjoying our summer. Summer bucket list-making is in progress and I can't wait!

Monday, June 3, 2013

3-day work weeks should totally be a thing.

I'm in a total funk today after two awesome weekends and a tiny little 3-day work week sandwiched in between. After being off last Monday for Memorial Day, and then taking off on Friday to chaperone Logan's class field trip/field day/picnic, I'm seriously dreading having to sit in an office for 5 whole days this week. Woe is me.

I've still got a ton of pictures to sort through from the past week, but for now, I'm just dreaming about how awesome it would be if I didn't have to sit in an office and work all the live long day.

I'd go to the pool and play outside with the kids...

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After much begging, we finally made it to the pool for the first time this season. And Lorelai totally got the hang of the neighbor's scooter.

I'd have tea parties on the deck...

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I'd chaperone more field trips...

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Logan's field day was a blast and he was so glad to have both me and Adam there. It was a field trip to a park for field day activities and a picnic.

I'd volunteer in the classroom more...

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Logan's two end-of-the-year awards: Good Sportsmanship and Perfect Attendance. So proud of our Kindergarten graduate!

I'd spend more time just chillin' with family (and holding sweet babies)...

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We celebrated my niece Piper's baptism this weekend with family from out of town. Always good times.

But now it's back to reality. 40 hours at a desk, workin' for the weekend. And savoring each weekend moment that I have. Sigh.

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