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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Things currently providing excitement for my family

Currently providing excitement for Colby: FIRE TRUCKS!

Currently providing excitement for Clara: STICKERS!

Currently providing excitement for Mommy: COOKIE BUTTER AT HEB!

Currently providing excitement for Daddy: KENNY & WARREN G MASH-UP!

What can I say? We're easy to please.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Why my husband is awesome

I would not describe myself as a positive person. Sometimes my overly-discerning (that sounds nicer than "negative") outlook works to my advantage, but unsurprisingly, more often than not, it serves only to rain on my parade and the parades of those around me. No one falls victim to my parade-ruining more than Brian, unfortunately, and saint that he is, it very rarely seems to ruffle his feathers.

So in writing a blog post about why he is awesome, I could keep it simple by just pointing out that he puts up with me AND usually does so with a smile on his face. But I'd like to give him a little more credit than that, so allow me to share a few recent examples:

1. He developed a cough a week or so ago and in an effort to avoid keeping me up at night, he camped out in the guest bedroom upstairs (next door to the twins and without a ceiling fan!) for a few nights. Had the situation been reversed, I most certainly would have staked a claim on our bed and kicked him out.

2. And on a related note, one of the nights when he was upstairs, I heard Clara crying frantically on the monitor and then heard him shushing her. I assumed he had gone in to calm her down and left, and so I went back to sleep. A few minutes later, he came in the room to tell me that she had actually thrown up and he needed to change his shirt so he could start the laundry. So let's recap: while he was sick, he got up with her, cleaned her up, changed her sheets, and put everything in the washing machine, all without waking me up to help.

3. In addition to being selfless and a great daddy, he is also very resourceful, as evidenced by this little set-up I found on our bathroom counter after his trip to the doctor to address that pesky cough:

That would be (1) the bottle of cough syrup, (2) a shot glass with his fraternity's logo on it, and (3) a syringe that came with one of the twins' prescription medications. I would have assumed there were measuring instructions involving use of the cap, but either that wasn't the case, or he was just feeling creative. Either way, it made me laugh.

4. Yesterday, Brian spent the twins' nap time (aka: the most sacred hours of the day) helping me prepare dinner for the week and then raking up leaves in the backyard with his dad. And in case you're wondering how big of a task that was, allow me to show you a nice before/after:
I know I don't say it nearly enough, but I love him very much and am so thankful for the many ways in which he makes my life easier, better, funnier, and more wonderful. And now my challenge to YOU is to share one great thing about your husband/wife in the comments. And... go!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Just the two, er, four of us

Oh, Valentine's Day, my how you have changed since our pre-children life. I wouldn't say our day was magical and romantic... in fact, I wouldn't even describe some points of it as enjoyable (I'm looking at you, toddler tantrums x 2). 

Admittedly I had a hard time hiding my disappointment about the fact that what used to be such a special day for us (cheesy and manufactured or not!) was stressful and chaotic, but wonderful husband that he is, Brian didn't hold my selfishness against me and made an effort to redeem the day where possible. The highlight was getting to eat lunch on the back porch (thank you, beautiful early Spring weather!) alone while the twins napped... and then watching a few episodes of "Gilmore Girls" (aka: my current love language) until they woke up.

Anyway, imperfections aside, we enjoyed spending the weekend with those we love most. And as a bonus, we both have the day off from work today and the twins' daycare is open, so we will, in fact get a day to ourselves!

Now let's recap the weekend, shall we?

Posted this on facebook but how could I not share it again? Someone thought it was a baby announcement at first- ha! 

I didn't put together a Pinterest-worthy treat for Colby and Clara's classmates, but I did find these cute (free!) printables online!

Our little Valentines testing out Davis's hand-me-down bike after their party- doesn't Colby look happy that we stopped pushing them to take this picture? 

Thank you, Lord, for grandparents that live close by and are more than happy to babysit when we ask! We enjoyed a pre-Valentine's Day triple dinner date with the Olivers and the Blackburns and then a movie with the Olivers. (1) First movie we saw in a theater since our mini-babymoon in February 2013 (2) Am I the only person in America that didn't realize "American Sniper" was based on a true story...? Yes, I live under a rock.

Brian took Clara to pick out flowers and in the meantime, I got some rare one-on-one time with this sweet little guy, who was very much in love with his new giant stuffed puppy!

It looks like they're fencing here, but if you look closely, Colby was handing Clara a flower :)

My three sweet Valentines + Colby's puppy

Took a little walk to Starbucks after naps to get some pink cake pops- love Clara's face in this one!

They aren't holding hands here, but let's please pretend that they are.

He was so smitten with those ducks that he almost chased them into the lake more than once!

Family pic at the park! 

Fast forward to Sunday: playing in the sandbox at a friend's birthday party

Checking themselves out in the reflection on the ceiling at dinner

Semi-impromptu visit from Pop Pop and Clara was definitely enjoying his attention

So tell me: on a scale of 1-10, how similar would you say this weekend was to our Valentine's Day weekend 2009? In case you don't want to re-read it, the highlights include picking out a new dress at the Galleria, dinner at a trendy restaurant, and a hotel stay in town. 

But seriously, thank you to Brian, Colby, and Clara for showing me every day what love really is!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Less depressing thoughts from a working mom

So when I shared this blog post on Wednesday, I totally should have included a caveat: while I do relate to the isolation that sometimes comes with being a working mom, I don't necessarily share in the author's somewhat mopey perspective.

Believe it or not, I actually enjoy being a working mom most of the time, but being that most of my friends are stay-at-home moms, it is easy to feel sorry for myself from time to time, and even to feel left out. I will clarify, though, that I don't typically feel left out because my SAHM friends don't include me; but rather, I'm simply not able to participate in a lot of the activities they do and therefore can't always relate to what they're experiencing.

On the flip side, that also means I don't have to deal with some of the same struggles that they do, like never having any time to myself or having hourly fights about things like wearing shoes or not drawing on the carpet. As a working mom friend and I were recently discussing, the grass really is always greener and I don't think there's any perfect option (but as she mentioned, staying at home and having a part-time nanny sounds pretty darn perfect).

Anyway, I found another blog post floating around facebook yesterday that shared some of the pros of being a working mom (specifically as it pertains to having your kids in daycare), and as a bonus, it was also much more upbeat! So I now share with you: My Kid Goes to Daycare {And I Don't Feel Bad About It}.

I especially like the last point about how taking your child to daycare helps you let go of control. This is really true with any childcare or school situation, but when your child is under someone else's care 45 hours a week, it takes it to a different extreme.

And so with that, I'll conclude this Friday the 13th/day before Valentine's Day post that has nothing to do with either one. Happy heart day weekend to you all!

Throwback pic from the Mother's Day celebration at daycare last year

The twins' new teacher is great about sharing pictures and videos of them with me on facebook- here's a collage she made of Clara a few weeks ago!

Colby's a little more minimalistic with his art

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Currently enjoying (x2)

1. Peanut butter & dark chocolate Kind bars

2. Chocolate almond & sea salt Kashi bars

Songs (both by Hillsong, both not new):
1. "The Stand" (Hillsong)
2. "Oceans" (Hillsong)

Pieces of jewelry (both Christmas gifts from my MIL!):
1. Kendra Scott necklace

2. C+C necklace from this shop on etsy

Trending blog posts:
1. The Lonely Life of a Working Mom
2. The Manager in my Home and the Five Words that Changed Everything

Children (in no particular order):
1. This one

2. And this one

Monday, February 9, 2015

You'll never guess what this is about

Allison and I were talking this weekend about how our blogs these days are (a) virtually identical and (b) consist almost entirely of weekend recaps. Given our matching genes and proximity to one another, the former is not likely to change. And given the fact that my non-weekends are filled with work (boring), the latter is not likely to change either... so I guess this is my way of saying sorry I'm not sorry?

Here are the highlights you need to know from this past weekend:

1. We went to the zoo.
2. We hung out with the Olivers.
3. We went to church.
4. I consumed a few bowls of salted caramel pretzel ice cream (the Safeway brand, because we're classy like that).
5. I took pictures of events #1-3 above.


Getting pumped about the animals

Must be nice to be chauffeured around the zoo while you eat snacks...

Ironically, the kids were too distracted by the rhinos to look at the camera.

Christmas card 2015 contender FOR SURE

Twinsies with the giraffes

Twinsies pretending to be giraffes

Clara kept waving to the animals in the petting zoo and enthusiastically yelling "HI!" Avery was a little less enthused.

Hey, Clara, your future teenager is showing!

Love those little monkeys

Finally released from their mobile prison stroller and enjoying their freedom with Davis

Hanging out with the Olivers

Wade and Colby doing a little uncle/nephew bonding over chips and dip

Pardon me for interrupting your chewing with another picture

Stole this one from Allison - my 4 favorite little people!

We're really enjoying the new church we've been visiting, and as I mentioned, I'm still enjoying taking advantage of dressing Clara up:

 And lastly, a gratuitous picture of Colby and Clara in a box:

Thanks, readers, for once again bearing with me on another weekend recap. As expected, I'll return 1-2 times this week with some in-between-weekend-recap filler content! 

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Photo an hour - Saturday, 1/31/15

7 am - out for a run

 8 am - waking up the twinkies

 9 am - grocery run (sporting jammies)

 10 am - new shoes for Clara (still sporting jammies)

11 am - diaper change

 12 pm - lunch & mindless nap time entertainment

1 pm - finally showering for the day

2 pm - unhappy about being awoken from nap time

3 pm - birthday party

4 pm - on the road
(car seats flipped around only temporarily - fear not, car seat safety enthusiasts)

5 pm - pearl pic for Melissa

6 pm - playing with cousins & friends

7 pm - bath time

 8 pm - Gilmore Girls & g-chat with Allison

9 pm - Gilmore Girls & painted toes

10 pm - investigating our fire ant infestation

I didn't take a picture at 11 pm (way past my normal bedtime), but you'll be thrilled to know that I was still awake and we were still dealing with the ant situation at the time. 

And that was my Saturday! Would love to see your photo an hour posts, too- same concept as a "day in the life" post but with far less effort :)