Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Solo Mommy for a few days...

It's almost 4pm on Wednesday.

I will be a single parent until Saturday morning.

As Macaulay Culkin said in the first Home Alone movie....Aaaahhhhhhhh!

The Hubs is leaving right now from work and headed over to the airport. He'll be gone until Saturday morning. So I'll have 3 nights of getting the kids ready for bed by myself. 3 morning of getting the kids fed and dressed for the day.

The Princess will be a help. IF....she's in a good mood. I'm sure we'll have a couple meltdowns. That's to be expected. But thank goodness it's a school week and not a vacation week.

But now? I'm heading out to pick the kids up from school/preschool. Then the first night parenting alone with begin.

Please send positive vibes my way!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Bathroom duty almost ALL done

I am ALMOST doing the happy dance.

After almost 7 1/2 years of taking care of my kids bodily functions, I'm on the very last leg of "on call" duty. Huh? What do I mean?

My son has started wiping himself after doing #2's!

He has finally realized that he can reach back there all by himself. Whew. I told him on Saturday that he should do an initial wipe and that I'd do a "final" wipe. He's been doing great too. Woo-hoo!

But the funniest thing happened yesterday after dinner.

The Bear ran over to the half bath after he finished his dinner. Then I heard a little bit of grunting and sounds of effort. Less than a minute later...
Bear: Mom....I'm all done!
I go over to do the final wipe.
Bear: Mom, you know what? I had BIG poop, but I didn't cry.
Me: Oh yeah? Good job buddy.
Bear: It was BIG and I pushed it all out.
He was so proud of himself. He remembered when his sister had an issue the other week. Anyway, it was just funny hearing him and then seeing the look of satisfaction on his face after. Priceless!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


The Bear's first "real" birthday party with his buddies was fabulous!

I can't believe how well it turned out. We had 7 kids that attended. 5 boys. 2 girls. The girls? They have the same name. Both are adorable too. The boys? They are definitely all boys. Rough and tumble. A bundle of energy each. Thank goodness we didn't have the party at our house. They would have torn it up!

Saturday morning I was getting the gift bags finished up. I had to pop 3 bags of popcorn and put them into ziplocs and then into the gift bags. I wanted the kids to have "fresh" popcorn so that's why I waited until that morning instead of doing it the night before. I was getting lots of tiny things finished up, so I didn't even hear my cell. My phone rang twice. Two parents were calling me to let me know they'd be at the party. Yes! I had two RSVPs about an hour before the party. But I figured that would happen so I had the gift bags ready.

We had some great coordinators at the bowling alley. Two young ladies who were full of energy. They were quick at getting the kids shoes. They would touch base with me every 15 minutes or so. They got our drinks quickly. They were great.

What is unfortunate is that we had an HOUR of bowling. And with these 5 year olds? They lost interest in bowling after about 30 minutes. The lights and sounds of the bowling alley games called to them. We ended bowling after about 45 minutes. The coordinators realized that the kids were not bowling anymore and got us into the room sooner than we were designed to be there. YEH!

Even though there was sanitizer lotion at the entry into the party room, I handed each kid a Handi-wipe. I just am squeamish about them putting their fingers into their mouths after touching all the bowling balls and all that. I didn't want them to get any weird germs. Ugh! And then they happily ate their pizza and drank their pink lemonade. We opened the gifts after this. Oh these kids! They were SO excited to have the Bear open THEIR gift. I felt claustrophobic. They were less than a foot away from us. I just had to laugh though because they were having such a good time. Even though it was a bit chaotic. The Bear hugged each friend after he opened their gift. He was so gracious. After the gifts, we brought the cake out. One of the gifts sat right next to the Bear. He-he-he! I actually brought chocolate milk, so the kids had that with their cake (which was a yummy chocolate too). Then after that? We handed each child a gift bag AND a game card so they could play the video games.

It was great that we didn't have to clean up after. The coordinators took care of everything. The Bear had a good time. His friends had a good time. We had a good time. SUCCESS!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

So much to do & so little time [updated]

Right now it's 11:35pm. I finished up as much as I could today because tomorrow I'm going to be frazzled. Why? Because...

Oil change -- I'm about 1000 miles over my normal change point DONE by 9am

Target -- I have to stop buy and purchase a few comforters. The Princess said she was still cold at night, so I'm guessing the Bear is too. And while I'm at it, I might as well get one for the guest room. DONE by 9:30

Laundry -- Wash the new comforters (I can't put just purchased items on the bed without washing them). I've also got the normal towels, bedding, and kids clothes to finish up. Halfway through at 1pm Complete at 3:30pm

Beds -- Get the fresh bedding & comforters on the beds Half of the fresh stuff is on at 1pm Complete at 3:40pm

Dust / Vacuum / Sweep / Clean bathrooms -- no explanation needed Complete at 4pm

Color my hair -- It has to be tomorrow. I've got too much silver peeking through near my ears and near my temples. I've decided to do this on Monday instead. Not enough time today.

2 conference calls -- I scheduled these 2 calls earlier in the week and cannot re-schedule. Done by 10am

Groceries -- I have to make a run to Safeway to get a bunch of things: fruit, salad fixings, burger patties, buns, guacamole, tortilla chips, tortillas, shredded cheese, eggs, and yogurt Done by 9:40am

Gift bags -- I've got to throw the little things into the plastic bags so these are all done since I won't have time to do them Saturday morning (the party starts at 9:45am) I've decided to do this tonight with my sister.

Then...[drumroll please]

I have to go to the airport to pick up LilSis and Shorty! They are coming out since they both have Monday off and wanted to take a long weekend visit. It's nice because the Bear is going to have his belated birthday party with his friends on Saturday morning. We can do that for 2 hours and then do other stuff in the afternoon. It'll be a good time.

But I'm going to be crazed tomorrow getting through my list of stuff to do. Maybe I should head off to bed so I don't pass out from being too tired....Wish me luck on getting everything done. But at least I'll enjoy the weekend with my sister!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

T minus 40 minutes

In about 40 minutes my ILs are going to arrive at our house. [Ugh]

We are hosting them so that they can give the Bear his birthday gifts. Oh...I forgot to post that his 5th birthday was on Wednesday. Yikes!

Anyway, we are having my FIL, MIL, and SIL over in a little bit so that they can see the Bear and give him lots of hugs and kisses. And I'm going to have to deal with them. You all know how our last gathering went.

Don't you worry. The Bear WILL be having a real birthday party NEXT Saturday with his preschool buddies. We're going to have a bowling party. The local place has bumpers so the little ones can throw the tiny bowling balls as crooked as they want. It'll be so much fun. AND I won't have a bunch of 4 & 5-year old boys running amuck in my house.

But first I need to get through today's visit.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Scrub & wash & get it clean

I used one of my Christmas presents yesterday and today. I'm a practical person. Remember when I asked for a fancy toaster and a high-end iron a few years ago? I bough myself a Dyson two Christmas ago. And this year I asked the Hubs to get me a Little Green machine. Seriously, it's something that I've been wanting to get for a while now. You think it's strange that I like house stuff? I work from home so I don't need a bunch of purses or work clothes, so my focus goes to household items.

And what did I use the machine on first? Our family room sectional cushions. We've had our sectional for almost 10 years now. It's been used and abused. And it's never been cleaned yet. I can just hear y'all cringing back there. But it's mostly clean now. I tested the machine on two of our worst cushions last night (they had these water stains from when the Bear's sippys would leak). And when we woke up this morning, the cushions were fully dry...and we couldn't see any stains! I couldn't believe HOW clean these things looked. I think the Hubs wished we had the machine years ago. I don't think he realized how dirty the cushions were. But now seeing the difference between the cushions from last night to the ones that we haven't touched yet? He can DEFINITELY see a difference. So this morning, I went right to work on our other cushions, which are now currently drying.

It'll be good that we've finally cleaned our sectional cushions because this coming next Saturday my ILs [gagging] will down to celebrate the Bear's birthday.

What's the 'best' gift you received this holiday from your significant other/spouse?

Saturday, January 5, 2008


I can't believe what I saw on Property Ladder tonight.

That guy Nathan is a piece of work -- and not in a good way. He wants to call the shots but he doesn't contribute. Even if he's not a handy person, he could have helped during demo. Doing demo isn't rocket science. What work did he do was "create" a so-called budget that resulted in a $12k estimate. Then he doesn't want to show his two partners this supposed budget because he can't guess at the ACTUAL amounts because they've never done it before. So all he did was research things online or at stores on the costs of things. Well, couldn't he have shown that to his two partners?

What thoroughly drives me crazy is that he showed up at the flip with his MOTHER. I can see that it was to show off. That this flip is what he was doing. That he ordering the other guys around. What a jerk! Those two guys are his friends. And he didn't lift ONE little finger to help them with any of the work. He held up work because HE couldn't call a person to pick up the trash? He actually equated picking up a phone as manual labor? Jeez christmas! Nathan actually thought the foil on the cabinets and then the initial painted cabinet doors looked good. They looked like CRAP! He was willing to have that crappy looking stuff?

Funny how their 2-week timeline ended up being a 16-week job. And their $12k budget turned into around $25k -- doubled the cost. Staging might look nice but the actually look of the place? Not so good. No hardware on the painted cabinets. No closet doors? No new shower door in the bathroom? No bathroom exhaust fan? I wouldn't have skipped hiring a staging company and put in better finishes & put in the final touches. They could have just "borrowed" furniture from Nathan's Mom, eh? Ha!

It's just interesting how negatively Nathan acted the entire episode. I wonder how his family and friends are going to respond after they watched the episode (it's a repeat). Hopefully he learned that when he's got partners that he needs to act like part of the team.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Mid-day movie date

As today is the last day of the Princess' vacation with me alone, we celebrated it with a mid-day date to the movie theater. We entered the new theater within 10 minutes of the movie's start. And what movie did we watch? Enchanted.

It was actually very enjoyable. Surprised me a bit. But the Princess laughed quite a bit. Covered her eyes a little too (during the kissing scenes). It was nice to see Disney have a movie with not much sassy behavior. I don't like to watch movies where the kids are sassy (i.e. Lilo & Stitch). This movie passes with flying colors!

Since this theater is very expensive, I decided to bring our own bag of popcorn and cookies. We did purchase ICEEs and hot dogs since it was lunchtime, but I wasn't going to spend any more for the additional snacks that I knew the Princess and I would want to nibble on.

It was nice just sitting there with my girl eating and laughing together. A nice way to spend our last full day alone together before the regular schedule begins next week.

What did you do on your child's last day of vacation?

Thursday, January 3, 2008

What's missing here?

This morning the Princess ran out of the bathroom.
Prin: Mom! Mom! My tooth is gone!
The tooth is gone? That bottom front tooth that I inspected last night? The front tooth that I performed some side-wiggling to? GONE!

She didn't notice that the tooth was gone as she ate a bagel for breakfast. She only noticed that it was gone when she went over to brush her teeth.

Y'all....I think she swallowed it either during breakfast. OR last night when she was asleep.

I inspected her bed and the surrounding carpet. Didn't see it there. So what's the harm in swallowing a tiny little tooth? I don't think there's any harm. It's tiny. I'm sure it'll 'pass' with no problems.
Prin: Mom? Do you think I should write the tooth fairy a note to make sure she knows I lost my tooth?
Me: I don't think you need to write her a note Sweetie-Pie.
Prin: You don't think so?
Me: She's really good about knowing when kids loose their teeth.
Prin: So you think she'll still leave me something?
Me: Yes. She will. I'm sure she will.
So my girl has a tooth missing. AND she's got some hair missing too.

Hair? Yes! She and I went to the local salon and she got her first REAL haircut. Enough of it was cut that the Princess was able to donate it. Yes, THAT much was cut off. It's now hitting just at her shoulders. There are some slight layers in it on the ends for some interest and movement. And she's still wanting to grow out her bangs, so this haircut will help those bangs 'catch up' to the rest. I'll try to get a photo of her tomorrow.

But when the Bear and the Hubs saw the Princess this afternoon, they both were surprised by the sight of her. She seriously looks more grown up all of a sudden. And I'm trying to take it all in stride. Now she can wash and rinse her newly shorter hair by herself. All I have to do is inspect the results to make sure all the shampoo is out.

Changes....YUP! We've got changes already in 2008...

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Dear Santa...Part 2

The day after Christmas, we shopped. NO! I didn't want to get caught up in the throng of folks returning/exchanging/hitting sales. I only do that on my own. It's a solo mission. Get in and get out. We were on vacation as a family, so....we went out as a family.

On Wednesday, we hit the Reuben Fleet Space Theater in Balboa Park. BigSis and my niece came down and we went in my car (my Freestyle). In elementary school, we used to have an annual field trip to the Space Theater and I wanted my kids to get a taste of it. They had a blast touching each exhibit. I really liked the interactive systems on the lower level. We dug up some dinosaur bones and did a space walk. FUN! What we enjoyed the most was the video room. What it would do is record the happenings in the room for an increment of time - seemed about 15 - 20 seconds. Then it would play back the activity -- forward, backward, stutter play. It was SO fun because we had the room to ourselves. The little girls did cartwheels. We marched. We 'walked like an Egyptian'. We even had a kickline at one point. We must have been in the room for at least 15 minutes or so! We were able to watch a dinosaur program in the IMAX theater too. Now THAT was something to see. It was the first time the kids had seen a film in IMAX. Actually, that was the first time the Bear stepped into a movie theater!

After we had an opportunity to touch and see everything, we headed out. It was a beautiful day. Chilly but bright and sunny. It was lunchtime, so we headed down to the harbor for fish-n-chips. When we were little, we used to go down to the harbor about once a month. My folks would buy all the fish/crab/seafood they'd need AND we would eat fish-n-chips outside and watch the boats. We were able to find parking with no problems. BigSis likes this little hole-in-the-wall place that's connected to the Harbor Excursion office, so that's where we landed. The food was delish! Eating FRESH fish is a far cry from frozen. Smelling the ocean, hearing the seagulls, watching the boats come in and out also added to the ambiance. Took me back...

The next day we decided to go down to the Scripps Birch Aquarium. It was closer to my folks house and wouldn't take so long to visit. You see, the Hubs had plans to go to the Holiday Bowl with the Bear that night. We didn't want to go anywhere that would take all day. The two needed to have a break/relax before the game. BigSis's entire family drove down, so we had a big crew. We went through the exhibit separately. Jello and my two nephews. The Hubs and the Bear. My niece and the Princess (together again). Me. BigSis. The kids enjoyed the shark feeding. Unfortunately, my camera was acting up so I didn't get as many photos as I wanted.

Well, the Hubs and the Bear had a good time at the Holiday Bowl even though ASU lost. They actually got home at a reasonable time (around 9pm), so the Hubs was able to get enough sleep before the long drive home.

What's amazing is that we headed out for home right on schedule the next morning. I had prepped the kids' and my luggage the night before. All I needed to do was throw in our toiletries and jammies. We did let the Hubs sleep into 9am. By the time he got up, the kids were dressed, had eaten, and were playing. Anyway, we did head out on time and it was another nice day. We were all pretty mellow due to all the activity of the week. No drama. What's funny is that the Princess fell asleep in the car and the Bear didn't.

We got home safely and I prepped the kids that we'd be unloading the car before we opened the gifts under our tree. So while the Hubs and I got the luggage and gifts out, the kids stalked the tree. And as I walked over to the livingroom to get ready for opening the gifts, I had the following conversation:
Prin: Mommy!
Me: Yes?
Prin: Santa wrote me back!
Me: What happened?
Prin: Remember that I left those treat and I wrote a note to Santa?
Me: Yes. Those peppermints....
Prin: Well, Santa wrote me back!
Me: No way!
Prin: He did...he DID!
Me: What's it say?
Remember that I left the note on one of the lower branches? When the Princess got the note off the branch, the empty peppermint wrapper fell onto the floor.
Prin: MOM! He must have eaten a mint as he was leaving the gifts!
Me: What makes you say that?
Prin: Look, there's a wrapper.
Me: Wow! He must have really wanted something sweet, eh?
She was so ecstatic that she'd thought of something so clever to leave Santa and that he enjoyed it. I'm just glad that as a 7-year-old she still believes in Santa. I don't think I'll be lucky enough next year. I think this is the last year that she'll "believe". [sigh]

But I am glad that this holiday with my family was full of fun, family, and outings. Wonderful memories. I leave you with my most favorite shot of the trip. My husband and my kids. The biggest loves of my life...