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Monday, August 31, 2015

Monday morning thriller

Apparently after writing last week's post, my brain is stuck in "boring" content mode, so all I can commit to providing to you is another unexciting post. Forgive me.

- Brian had some yard work to do this weekend and for the second time in our marriage, I helped! At one point, I asked him if he was surprised that I was helping, and he said, "Surprised? No... but I'm thankful that you are." And I responded with, "Really? Because even I'm surprised that I'm helping."

Our neighbor's adult son drove up while we were outside working and made some comment about how we chose the hottest time of the day to be out there. And for a brief moment I forgot that not everyone's lives were controlled by nap time.

[This post is so boring that I don't even have pictures of the end product. Just imagine mulch and some bushes. Breathtaking, no?]

- Brian got his hair cut on Friday afternoon and we took the twins along to watch. Colby, President of the "Haircuts Are Of the Devil" Club, had this look on his face the whole time:

"Mommy, you're not going to make me sit in that chair next, are you?"

You can imagine how relieved he was when we left without subjecting him to such torture. You can also imagine how relieved he was upon realizing it was pajama day at school that morning, thereby giving him a pass from having to get dressed in actual clothes, also considered a form of torture.

Meanwhile, the sister that has yet to receive a haircut smiled her way through the outing and ate her lollipop without a care in the world:

- While we were at it with parading our children around in public whilst still sporting their jammies, we hit up Kolache Factory with the cousins on Saturday morning, and it did not disappoint. Also, let the record show that we walked there, so none of the calories consumed even counted! Nevermind the fact that it's less than a mile roundtrip. 

- And lastly, two more gratuitous pictures of my children, because (a) it's my blog and (b) they're pretty cute little punkins:

He looks bored, but was actually quite focused on ensuring proper animal placement on the farm.

 Because everyone knows PB&J tastes better when you eat it under the kitchen table.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The weather (Week 10)

Apparently the purpose of this week's challenge was to bore you to tears. And because I'm talking about the weather in Houston in August, apparently the purpose was also to depress you.

Our current weather can be described with three key words:

1. Hot
2. Muggy
3. Disgusting

Imagine my delight on Saturday morning when I was about to go running and saw that it was a cool 77 degrees outside:

Now imagine my disappointment when I scrolled down and saw the humidity level:

The good news is that a "cold front" is making its way through this week, and in addition to rain, we are also going to experience more mild temperatures. Sadly, "more mild" = high around 90 degrees instead of high around 98 degrees. 

What's my favorite type of weather, you ask? Cold and cloudy, but still dry. So basically I belong in the mountains.

So what's everyone else's ideal weather like? Any of you crazies out there prefer this sweltering heat? 

Monday, August 24, 2015


Just wanted to share a few of some of the recent Colby-isms and Clara-isms...

We walked by a neighbor recently and I prompted the twins to say, "Hi there!" as we passed. Colby cooperated and said, "Hi there!," and then when the person was behind us, he followed it up with, "Bye there!"

Before we leave for daycare in the mornings, Clara puts her cup of milk back in the fridge. A few times lately while doing so, she has spotted leftover food from dinner the night before and demanded a bite. Apparently nothing hits the spot quite like a cold turkey meatball at 6:45 in the morning.

I know almost all kids do this, but both Colby and Clara say, "hold you?" when they want to be picked up and it might be my favorite thing ever.

There are a couple of giant horse statues in Sugar Land's town square that Colby has determined are actually hippos, and he excitedly asks for them as such any time we're in the vicinity. I don't know why the idea of two hippo statues in the middle of a fountain makes me laugh so much, but it does.

The morning after Brian's parents and sister babysat recently, Clara asked, "Where'd Shannon go?" and proceeded to look under the breakfast table, because clearly after putting the twins to bed, she must have gone under there to wait for them until morning, right?

I've mentioned before that they both have a tendency to take random objects to bed with them at night. The most ridiculous one? Clara once insisted on sleeping with a clear plastic spoon that she used to eat gelato at dinner that evening. Imagine what a fun treasure hunt it was to look for that when she cried out for it in the middle of the night.

Any time I go to the bathroom, I can't help but laugh when both of them excitedly announce that Mommy's going to the "big boy potty." 

He's since learned the actual word for it, but Colby recently said he wanted some "happy to you" and after some investigating, I realized that he was talking about cake. ("Happy birthday to you" = "happy to you" = cake... can't fault that logic!)

Colby now refers to himself as "Toby" or "Doby," while he refers to Clara as "Tara," "Dara," or occasionally, "Cawa." Clara still refers to herself as "Rah-rah," while she refers to Colby as "Bubby."

Yesterday the twins came with us to the regular service at church (rather than childcare) because we were being presented as new members. I was holding Clara while I was singing when she turned towards me, stared at me for a second, then put her finger up to my mouth and firmly said, "NO." 

And to save the best for last, allow me to introduce you to one of the twins' favorite pastimes, "Hulking out":

 Little ones, you sure are crazy, but we sure do you love you!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

My favorite thing to do right now (Week 9)

This is going to sound very lame, but my favorite thing to "do" right now is have Friday afternoons to myself. I get off of work at 11:30 am every Friday (I know- amazing), and usually don't pick the twins up from daycare until around 4 pm, so that means I get 4.5 glorious hours to myself.

How do I spend this precious time, you ask? Well it typically looks a little something like this:

11:30 am-12:30 pm - I take my weekly trip to the grocery store. No one is flailing around in my cart or demanding a "treeeeeeat," and it is awesome. There's also usually not much of a crowd at that time, so I can navigate freely through the aisles. Oh what a life of luxury I lead...

12:45 pm - After I put away the groceries, I eat lunch while I update our budget, because I'm (a) all about multi-tasking and (b) a dork. While I eat, no one asks for "MORE ICE WATER, MOMMY" and I only have to wash off my plate when I'm done, and it is awesome.

1:30-3:30 pm - So this is where my routine varies depending on the week. I typically participate in any combination of the following activities:
- clean the house
- go to Target (regardless of whether or not I actually need anything, because, duh)
- organize the twins' room/closet
- take care of appointments
- run miscellaneous errands that I don't want to have to deal with during the weekend

And while yes, I do selfishly enjoy the peace, quiet, and productivity that comes with my Friday afternoons, it's also a great opportunity for me to recover from the week and get some of the boring stuff crossed off the "to do" list so I can make the most of the weekend with my peeps. And I'm sure all 3 of them appreciate the fact that I've had some time to decompress by the time they see me on Friday evening.

So there you have it... "me time" for the win!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Lake Hamilton Trip

If you've already read Allison's recap of our double-family trip to Lake Hamilton/Hot Springs, Arkansas trip last week, then prepare yourself for some serious deja vu (minus some pictures of her fam and plus some of mine). I'll do my best to keep it brief:

Day 1: Miraculously, we drove the 7-hour trek to our destination with only ONE stop, and that stop was 5 hours into the trip. How did we accomplish this, you ask? Movies and snacks. Colby and Clara maintained their cool for most of the drive, but their unfortunate decision not to nap came back to haunt us for our first evening there. 

Nonetheless, we still forced squeezed in a couple of photo opps. We did not take any pictures at dinner, however, because I had lost my will to live at that point. Thankfully the tasty pizza made up for all of the meltdowns (mine included).

There is no sense of relief quite like that of putting your toddlers down to bed at night. Having a pretty sunset to watch doesn't hurt either.

Day 2: Exploring the house + a trip to the children's/science museum + Mexican food; the temperatures were in the 90+ range, but the humidity was so low that I legitimately did not sweat. An August miracle (and one that will never occur in Houston)!

Let's pretend they were leaning on each other lovingly rather than fighting over pressing that button.

I love this pic primarily because it showcases just how clingy my little shadow can be!

Homeboy was downing that salsa like it was going out of style. Even the waitress was impressed!

Day 3: We're on a boat! We spent the first half of the day on the lake tubing, swimming, snacking, and generally not having to try that hard to entertain our children. I'll be honest: it was pretty magical. After naps, we ate dinner out, complete with purple ice cream and yep, you guessed it, more excuses to take pictures!

My arms are still sore...

Don't have too much fun there, Colby!

Definitely a 2015 Christmas card pic contender...

Day 4: Frolicking around some gardens + swimming + dinner/s'mores; I think it's safe to say we had mastered living by the lake at this point.

I'm not kidding when I say that Colby's favorite memory of the trip would probably be throwing rocks in the lake!

I spy the hired help in the background!

(This house was legit, by the way. Updated, clean, kid-friendly, and a great view- VRBO for the win!)

Not sure which I want to eat up more: that s'more or that little boy!

One of these things is not [pasty] like the others...

Ah, this is the life.

Had to capture the final sunset before our departure the next morning!

Day 5: I was once again really impressed with how well the twins did in the car. I'm also pretty sure I've memorized most of the words to "Finding Nemo," "Frozen," and "Monsters, Inc." thanks to this trip. We made it home with just one stop for lunch, but because no road trip with small children is complete without this happening, Colby got car sick and tossed his cookies (technically, his french fries) when we were 20 minutes away from being home.

Thankfully, even though we ended on a slightly sour note, the trip was still a big hit and we were sad to see it end. We're looking forward to many more family trips with the Olivers in the years to come... where to next, sis?

(Honorable mention to some memorable moments that were not photographed: several hilarious and inappropriate rounds of Cards Against Humanity with the adults, at least 700 timeouts for my children compared to maybe 2 for the Olivers' kids, and stealing Allison's phone/camera to take selfies every time she left the room.)