Monday, September 24, 2012

single, attractive, accomplished friends are a gift

Motherhood and marriage have a way of crowding out single friends. I just had a week with one of my favorites.
Spending time with your single, attractive, accomplished (SAA) girlfriends is a gift.
It reminds you of a few things:

1. the satisfaction of adult conversation. rounds and rounds about pop culture, politics, & religion.
you're fascinated by the time she went to Singapore, the people she met in Cuba, and the peaks she summits. you learn which titles on your list are worth reading & whether eyelash extensions are worth getting a sitter.

2. the fun of dining at a downtown eatery with live music, wearing something that makes you feel irresistible like Zooey Deschanel. . The pleasure of finishing your meal because you're full, not because if you don't leave now your kid will break down.

3. you were a girlfriend once. 
before you were a wife & a mom, you were fancy-free, wore lipstick, and you thought about sex too.

4. a good man is hard to find.
once you've got him, don't stop dazzling him because SAA gals are sensational.  
they sleep in & have all that energy.
they wear flattering clothes & make eye contact when they're listening.

5. if you're lucky enough, somehow you wouldn't trade coming home to rock your baby and kiss your husband good-morning to go back to your single, attractive, accomplished girl life.
Well, maybe just for a week of the sleeping-in part.

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Friday, September 21, 2012

celebrating 4, friends, carrot cake, etc

MidKid turned 4 this weekend. 4! I can still fold her up in my lap & tickle her chunky monkey little body. It does not seem like yesterday that she was a baby. It seems like she turned 12 the day she learned to talk.
Our house was as I wish it would be each weekend: every room spilling with family, eating chili & watching football while the kids ran around. My husband even got the guys & their kids out in the backyard for touch football. Girls, dressed in Lilah's new princess costumes, played too. Pinch-me-I'm-dreaming!
Here's a free tip: Chili, with a toppings bar is about the most stress-free food you can serve this fall for a party. It tastes better the day after it's made, so make it the night before as I did. I served hot dogs so kids could eat those or grown-ups could make chili dogs. Add some homemade mac-n-cheese on the side & you're golden.  I've used this recipe for years & it's a winner each time. 
Miss L embarrassed me something terrible this week at story time. Not in the cute way, or otherwise redeemable way either. In the "if only she didn't look just like me & I could inconspicuously round the corner out of the room and not be associated with her" way. The other moms graciously accepted me in spite of my parenting-malfunctions on display. Thank goodness because this story time is magical! Remember Meg Ryan's character at The Shop Around The Corner in You've Got Mail? She wore that cone-shaped hat as she read to the children, sitting cross-legged on the carpet in front of her. Our story time reminded me of that scene. The (well-behaved) children threw back their heads & laughed as story lady dramatically entertained them with stories & songs & a real live coconut to illustrate Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. It was something special.

Some highlights since I last wrote:
1. One of the best of my friends visited me from Colorado last week. Her hemp milk remains in my fridge as a reminder of her week here with us. I've decided to discard it only when it smells. I was so worried she'd hate her time here since our conversations, solving the world's issues would be interrupted by my kids all day long & I feared she'd be disappointed by my SAHM life as compared to the life we'd dreamed up years ago. On the contrary, she fit nicely into our routines and her company was deeply refreshing to me. Thank you, Lord for friends that transcend!

2. Clara is a walking fool! It's her main mode of transportation now. And I'm especially taken by her "turn move", which she's nailed this past week.

3. Carter was THRILLED to learn that in 1st grade they are allowed to check out 2 books. "So I got this one for me and this one for Lilah." sweeeeeeeetheart.

4. My motivation to run has waned significantly in the past 2 weeks. I go to the gym just about every week day (free childcare, holla!) but it's tough to push past mile 2 each time. I did 4 today (motivated by #5)
5. I ate WAAAAY too much of this carrot cake, that I made to celebrate my sister-in-law's birthday since it happened to fall on the day of Lilah's party. Make it. Or don't. Depending on your will power & pants size satisfaction.
6. I need to be a better wife. I need to. After long chats with my pal about marriage & how special mine is because we're still in love after nearly 10 years & 3 kids, I'm realizing how much better I could be. Reading 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (NLT) " not irritable.." Oh man. Lawd, help me!

7. We've decided to give home-schooling preschool a try with Lilah since it worked wonderfully for Carter. I read this article to refresh my memory on what she needs to know before Kindergarten. I'm confident I can prepare her adequately at home for all but the social aspects. I suspect it may take more than regular interaction at the gym & church with kids her age to prepare her in this regard. She is quite different for Carter. We'll see. 8. I'm turning 32 on Sunday. I figured out my husband bought me a pair of Uggs slippers when I noticed him studying his own suspiciously. I've been looking out the window for hours waiting for the delivery! They're red! How fun! Pin It

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

1st day of 1st grade, learned the F-word, etc

Our hours are jam-packed these days! Mostly with fun things, a few frustrating.

1. "it is AWESOME, mom," said my new 1st grader when I asked him what he thought of his first day at his new school.
2. not so awesome: holding my 1 year old down so they nurses could draw blood to check her liver function.
3. my red-haired cousin got married in a lovely blush-colored dress and was radiating with love for her new groom. a lady is just so pretty when she feels loved, don't you think? 
4. mom found us a sofa for a song at an estate sale. in-laws delivered it. yay for living 3 hours from family!
5. contractors lie.
6. the kids have been riding their new bikes in our cul-de-sac every spare minute. they haven't had concrete nearby or ridden a bike since we left TX in 2010.
7. my Italian neighbor brought over the most delicious Italian cream cake. Bonus: no one really cares for it like I do.
8. all boxes are unpacked, broken down, and bundled on the side of the road for the recycling pick up. (thanks, Dad.) we now have full use of our garage for the first time.
9. FOOTBALL is back
10. Carter learned the F*word. From someone we love & trust, who learned it at school. I learned how little control I have after all.
11. I love this house. I never want to move.
I hope we come back to it the night after my last child's wedding. I hope grandchildren visit us here. And not just because of all the labor we've put in selecting blinds & painting the perfect Benjamin Moore shade on this or that wall.
Every room is my favorite room. There's enough space for both of our families to visit.

I can count on one hand how many times I've opened my computer in the past couple of weeks. In a typical day I've opened it that many times before lunch!
12. I got caught up with the ever-inspiring Ashley's adoption journey today. The crib (pictured here), with a wooden "mattress" & metal bars where her new baby girl spent the first year of her life brings just the perspective I need when I'm busy trying to replicate all the pretty spaces I've pinned in our new home. Pin It
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