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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Fall-y things

Last Friday, I took a vacation day from work and took the twins to Blessington Farms with Allison, Avery, and another one of our friends along with her son. We had never been before because even though I had heard great things about it, I have never had an interest in battling weekend crowds to check it out, so going on a Friday seemed more promising.

We did luck out in that it wasn't very crowded, but unfortunately, the weather was pretty gross. It was foggy and humid for the first half of our visit, and then sunny and uncomfortably hot for the second half. The kids did not seem to mind in the least, however, and had a great time! (... and when I wasn't being a jerk about making them take pictures or complaining about the weather, I had a pretty good time, too!)

Not pictured: swarms of mosquitoes eating my children's flesh while I barked at them to stop scratching their legs and begged them to please, for the love, just SMILE AT THE CAMERA

3 little pumpkins!

There was a lot of sliding...

Some animal encounters...

Several rounds of ziplining...

A couple of rides on the train...

(Not my best pic but how cute is he?)


And the twins' favorite: running around in these giant hamster wheels...

Hopefully we can go back next year when the weather is a little more pleasant, but then again, we do live in Texas, so I probably shouldn't get my hopes up.

Saturday morning held another soccer game where Colby won the sportsmanship award and Clara scored 3 goals, so Brian took them out for a celebratory lunch at (wait for it) McDonald's to get their first ever happy meals! 

I spy post-soccer game Gatorade mustaches!

We spent the afternoon/evening playing with the two other families that go to both our church and daycare. We did seasonally appropriate activities like painting pumpkins and dancing to Halloween music, but because it's October in Texas, it was also more than warm enough for the kids to go swimming, much to their delight!

The pumpkin in the middle is one I painted using some nail polish technique my friend found on Pinterest- turned out pretty cool!

Brian and I unfortunately had a funeral to attend on Sunday afternoon, but the Olivers graciously kept the twins while we were away. They played at the park, watched a "movie about chipmunks and humans" (per Colby), and decorated masks which have since gotten a lot of wear around our house!

As the cool front was rolling in that evening (hallelujah), Colby and Clara decided to throw me a bone and willingly volunteered for yet another photo shoot with the pumpkins. I'd say this picture captures their personalities a little better than the posed ones:

So yeah, it's safe to say we're enjoying Fall around these parts. If you need to find me between now and Halloween, just look for a trail of Reese's pumpkin wrappers and I'll be close by. 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

What's a more enticing way to say "Photo Dump"?

Ok let me first of all just mention that I am recovering from a stomach bug and I feel like one member of our family or another has been dealing with some kind of stomach-related illness for the better part of the last 4+ months. (And yes, I recognize the benefits of probiotics, which we do use semi-regularly, and no, I am not interested in learning more about gut health. :) Anyway, I just wanted to publicly complain about it and request pity... so there you go.

There have been many big and important things happening in our house, and by "big and important things," I mean the same things I always blog about us doing.

Clara is a couple of months into her latest year of dance class. This year's class is a ballet/tap combination and I feel like I have failed you as a mommy blogger by not videoing any of their tap practice, because it's pretty amusing to watch.

Colby and Clara are halfway through their soccer season and I am so happy to share that is has been going approximately 7,000 times better than last year's season. They both strongly prefer the "not hard" part (pre-game practice), but they are willingly participating in the game AND Clara even scored 2 goals last week!

In self-care news, I took a day off of work and went shopping with Allison and spent another afternoon when I was already off work getting a massage. Both were therapeutic and much-needed!

And speaking of time without kids, Brian and I got to sneak away to see a football game at our alma mater with Allison and Wade! Allison and I hadn't been to a game since our senior year (HOW was that 13 years ago?!), so it was extra fun for us to be back... especially because we didn't have to spend the duration of the game standing in the sun like we did when we were students. The weather was perfect and the Aggies won, so it was a well-spent trip indeed. Thank you to Mimi, Granddaddy, and Aunt Shannon for making our escape possible!

We've been to a few birthday parties for the twins' friends, complete with pony rides, petting zoos, pinatas, time at the playground, and more. I feel like it's out of the norm for daycare kids to hang out outside of daycare as much as the twins and their classmates do, but we're very thankful that they've made such sweet little friends and that we've gotten to know so many of the parents!

Oh, and speaking of birthdays, we celebrated the twins' half birthday last week. Well, by "celebrated," I mean that we gave them donuts for breakfast and let them wear their "it's my birthday" shirts again. This majorly confused some of their classmates and likely their teacher, but hey, you only turn 4.5 once!

This is related to nothing we've been doing, but since I don't often feature pictures of my parents on here, I thought I'd share this cute one they took on their recent tour of some countries in Europe that I truthfully could not keep up with... Germany was in there, and so was Holland... that's all I can recall because I was too busy rotting in my office and dying of jealousy.

A picture of them somewhere pretty (I know, I should clearly write a travel blog)

Now let's make this full circle by bringing it back to the stomach bug fun, because of course I documented some of that (no actual poop or vomit pictured):

I would be ok if we never had to pull out that bucket for this purpose again.

This was the day that Clara was too sick to go to school and Colby weaseled his way into staying home, too. ("Mommy, I can't go to school alone. I don't like learning without my sister.") I didn't hate it, though, because we got to play Legos together while Clara wallowed on the couch.

So yeah, we've been up to the usual happenings. Now that the temperatures will be regularly dipping below 90 degrees, you can rest assured that pumpkin pictures and other documentation of Fall activities are forthcoming, so get ready!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Just some thoughts that are not at all related

Brian convinced me to go watch "It" with him at the movie theater a couple of weeks ago. What I want to know is this: where were all of the responsible adults in that town and why the heck didn't they teach their children NOT to accept a random clown's invitation to join him in the storm drain?! And also, is that something I explicitly need to tell the twins?!

Confession: Ever since learning that there are no video surveillance cameras in our elevators at work (there are in other parts of the building), I randomly started doing dance moves when riding in them alone. [This is how rule followers rebel, in case you were wondering.]


Recently I was talking to the twins about how God doesn't always give you what you ask for because sometimes He knows that's not what's best for you. Clara thought for a moment and then said, "Yeah, like when you say, 'God, I want to poop on your face!' and He doesn't let you do it." Um, yeah, that's the same example I had in mind, too.

My parents were heading to Europe recently and when I called my mom shortly before they left, our conversation went like this: 
[Ring, ring]
Mom: Hello?
Me: Hey,  Mom. When are you and Dad leaving for your trip?
Mom: We leave on Tuesday night. I need you to promise me if anything happens to me that you'll take care of my doggies. 

Want to know what Colby and Clara fight about the most frequently? Who gets to open the microwave when it beeps. Yes, seriously.

Colby thinks the words to "Everyday I'm Shuffling" are actually "every day I'm shellfishing." 

I went to get a massage recently and when the massage therapist came out to greet me, she said she recognized me from the first time she gave me a massage, which was when I was pregnant. She then pointed out that I looked different and asked if my hair used to be shorter. Yes, I was 7 months pregnant, but the primary difference between my appearance then and now was my slightly shorter hair.

Clara and I were playing princesses yesterday when I, acting as Ariel, asked her, acting as Snow White, if we could be best friends. In her best princess voice, she responded, "Ok, we can be best friends... and then we can go to a meeting!" (You know you're the child of a working mom when...)

The twins were sitting quietly in the car recently when out of nowhere, Colby sighed loudly and wistfully said, "I wish I was a robot."

Colby was getting close to the stove when we were making dinner the other night and the following conversation ensued:
Colby: I better be careful, I don't want to burn myself.
Clara: Yeah, I don't want you to get burned because you're my best friend... but only when we're at home.
Spoken like a true sibling.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Out of the norm

We had a few out of the norm occurrences last week that are worth sharing (and yep, it's true, this is about as exciting as it gets in the world of mom blogs!):

1. I had my first professional picture taken. I've been in the workforce for 12 years, 10 of which have been spent with my current employer, so I'm kind of impressed I've made it this long. In fact, my ID badge is still rocking my first-day-of-work picture that was taken a decade ago. But apparently there's an internal publication being put together that requires an updated picture (of me not wearing a pink sweater like I did on my first day, apparently), and so this took place last week:

I asked the photographer if he could make me look tan, but apparently even photo editing applications have their limits... sigh.

2. Allison and Avery picked the twins up from daycare to take them out for two (separate) weekday outings! Clara was first and got to join Allison, Avery, and a few friends at an indoor play place for playing and lunch:

The next day, it was Colby's turn, and they headed to a new (to him) park for - you guessed it - playing and lunch:

The twins were really excited about their "adventures" and as a full-time working mama that experiences a lot of guilt about not getting to take them out regularly to do this kind of thing, it made me pretty happy, too. Thanks for being a sweet and thoughtful aunt and cousin, A&A!

3. Speaking of out of the ordinary weekday experiences for the twins, I took them solo to a Skeeters game on Thursday night. My company was offering free tickets and even tough Brian had a poker night scheduled, I thought the twins would enjoy going, so I decided to be brave and take them on my own... and I'm glad I did! 

The highlights for them were eating ice cream, jumping on the bounce houses, and Colby getting a game ball - a man actually caught it and gave it to Colby which was super sweet (... even though I had gone to get the twins some water and totally missed the whole thing). 

When I was on the fence about going and fretting to a co-worker about whether or not I could handle it, she told me I wasn't giving myself enough credit, and she was right. But truthfully, I also wasn't giving the twins enough credit- yes, they still whine and act out plenty of the time, but for the most part, they are pretty good kids and I think I make them out to be much more difficult in my mind than they actually are. 

4. I got to meet one of my best friend's newest babies!! Kristen and Bryan welcomed their third baby, Cohen, into the world and I was so excited to snuggle him when he was just a day old... he was such a sweet, squishy, little muffin and I can't wait to visit him again soon!

5. Last, but certainly not least, the twins started their second soccer season on Saturday. I know I mentioned this in last week's post and any of you who know me in real life OR read my blog last Fall know that their first season did NOT go well for any of us. They were uncooperative and spent the majority of the time protesting on the sidelines. Meanwhile, I spent most of the time losing my cool and acting like a psychopath.

When they insisted on playing again this year (which I still insist is only because of the post-game snacks and Gatorade...), I was very resistant. We finally agreed and I tried to convince myself to lower my expectations and not freak out if we had a repeat of last year. I felt somewhat at peace when we headed to their first game on Saturday, though still admittedly a little on edge.

I'm thankful to report that the first game went a million times better than we expected! There was no crying and only minimal complaints about being too tired to play. Clara was more interested than Colby (who spent most of the time jogging slowly behind the team and yawning- see below), but they still both seemed to have a decent time, and they sure looked cute doing it.

Clara before the game with her favorite cousin/cheerleader and after with her sportsmanship award sticker!

I'm not foolish enough to think the whole season will be a breeze, but the first game at least gave me hope, so I'll take it!