Sunday, October 31, 2010

So many Birthdays

October is the month of birthday's in and around our household... We have Laine, Chayse, Ryan and Myself, not to mention the cousins and niece we have with October birthdays! As much as I love to have big shindigs for my gals, the same is not said for myself.  Although, I do like to do something fun, to set the day aside from all others, but in the long run- I want nothing more than just a little relaxing evening with my family, and perhaps a nice dinner with my man! Good thing Ryan wants the samefor his birthday... Perhaps it has something to do with having the same birthday!? 
Yes, its true, and quite strange I must admit...  Ryan and I have the exact same birhtday, except 6 years apart.  We would have also had our Wedding day on this same day as well... had I not been so adamant against it! We can't throw everything into the same day! One day to celebrate, one present... no thanks! (Not like we ever exchange them anyway...) But- nonetheless, where's the fun in that!?
So, just reminiscing... here are a few pictures of our birthdays we have celebrated in the recent years...

My most favorite one is a given... I keep it framed at all times, as it is very near and dear to my heart.  One of the few pictures I have of me being sandwich between two amazing (and attractive) men! Hey this is Kentucky! I can get away with saying that about my brother!

This was taken on our birthday in 2002? And WOW- HOW THINGS HAVE CHANGED SINCE THIS PICTURE... (good and bad...)
But... we'll only stick with the good!

This picture was taken in 2006, when we celebrated our birthday- and announced we were pregnant (with sloanie!)

The next year...

We were celebrating with this little one...

And then, once again... so quickly throwing another in the mix...

And then in 2008- our birthday fell between a one year old's birthday party...

and Halloween...

So, there was no birthday for us! We don't even have a picture of us on our birthday (and I just realized it while I was trying to dig one up!) Pathetic!
So, fortunately... I have a beautiful picture to show for this years day of birthday festivities!

Great pic huh~!? 
Obviously our birthday is not at the top of our priority list anymore... For example, here is the exact detail of how this years birthday unfolded... (don't get too excited!!)
1- We woke up to Sloan tapping me on the head, saying, "mommy... mommy... get up... mommy..."  Ryan said Happy birthday, and I said the same, as then he blew his runny, congested nose.
2-We got up, got the girls ready, took Sloan to school, Chayse for her 2 year check up and flu mist, and then dropped her off at School too.
3- Went to HomeGoods to find a present for myself. This is what I found!!...


* I HAD to have the mirrors!! The bench, was a little steep for what I wanted to spend- especially since I didn't know where to put it... but I could always make room...

4- I checked my account, to see how much I could spend- and realized my mortgage had just gone through... not good for a spur of the moment shopping spree! Bummer...
5- So... I left empty handed, and headed into work earlier than planned before my 1:00 meeting.
6- I spent the rest of the afternoon in my meeting while checking all the wonderful birthday wishes on Facebook, and responding back to the wishful texts! (This is one of the few days I love Facebook!) - If I could just remember to turn off my email notifications when I get on FB! I'm sure I would have a much better relationship with it, if it did not alert me on every...single...thing!
7- Tried to text Ryan, but realized his meeting was much more important than mine, since he could not be distracted and text.  Was he was actually listening to his!?
8- Picked up the girls from school, stopped in the grocery for some Day Quil for Ryan- came up with a bright idea to fix steaks, asparagus and potatoes for dinner...
9- Pulled in the drive to some balloons and candy on the front porch! Thank you Pammy B for the surprisingly random unexpected gift from you!! Love the babies!
10- Fixed dinner, baked cookies, sat down all together and ate a delicious... ok, so it was more like a decent meal, then watched the girls chow down the cookies and leave a chocolate chip/crumb trail following them throughout the house...great.
11- Put the girls in the bath after an explosive diaper ending up on my arm, and all over Chayse's back.
12- Decided to snag a photo since we had not gotten one all day on our birthday...
13- Did the whole bed time routine, put the girls to bed... and that's when it hit me....
14- I collapsed on the bed, blew my nose a dozen times, mustered up some strength to go downstairs with Ryan; He cleaned up and I slowly and sniffily got everything ready for the next day (school outfits, lunches, backpacks, and my coffee of course)
15- We headed upstairs and....  blew our nose yet again, Ryan took NyQuil and then... was... out...! October 27th, 9:33 he was snoring through his congestion, and I was figuring out ways to lay where I could breath through my nose... 10:54, 1:39, 5:47... uuuhhhhhh.... 6:05-ALARM...

*So... there you have it! That's all she wrote! that was it... that was our birthday!
Quite depressing. Not really the uplifting wonderful day you were hoping to hear about... But, all in all, in reality- that is our life! Why would it be any different on our birthday!?

Fortunately, we felt better this weekend and Clemmie had a birthday dinner for us!
After all the wonderful food, cake and ice cream we ate- this is what we looked like!


(good thing it's Halloween today!)
HAHAH! We had the best time cracking up with the hilarious and scary truth of the 'FatBooth' App!! That made the party! 
My mom also gave me some money... so, now, I am a proud owner of my mirrors I was stalking at Home Goods! Thanks Mama!!
I think they look much better here than in the store!
(The other is on the other side of the entrance door... and looks just as amazing!)

Now if someone wants to volunteer to watch the girlies so Ryan and I can actually celebrate a nice date night dinner...? (And get us a little closer to looking like the pictures above)... anyone...? anyone...? Bueller...? Bueller...?

Well, I'm off to clean the Haunted House we always live in! After today, we can't use the excuse that the spider webs are Halloween decorations!!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Pass the Sugar Please

OK, so what's the best way to approach my 2 week long hiatus... I'll just avoid that white elephant in the room, and act like I've been updating regularly... So here goes... I'll just jump right in!

Two wonderful years ago, we were celebrating the birth of baby Chayse. 

 She was born October 19, and became the most adorable, precious, lovable, beautiful little baby girl.  She's always been sooo easy sleeping through the night, never crying, and taking her sister's abuse like a champ. 

As the months passed, she has pretty much stayed the same ol' sweet, innocent, little girl.  She's super easy, almost constantly smiling and laughs at almost anything and everything! To put it simply... She's just absolutely ADORABLE! She bobbles around and makes everyone fall in love with her within a second.  She does what she's asked, and if not, she is extremely easily persuaded with a little food, which she has grown to have an enormous affection for.  

I always told myself, if I knew another one would be as easy as her, I would definitely try for a third...  OK- fast forward until now and my how things change! 
How in the world have the 'terrible two's' crept up on us so quickly?!!  I never thought this would happen to my little angel! Its like a disease that has completely taken over and entirely transformed her! There has to be a fix- an old ancient remedy or something!? But, until I find it- I'll stick with what seem to work best. Give her some lipstick and let her go to town!

She reminds me a little more like an old cat.  99% of the time, she's loving and enjoyable, but if you push her to her limit... oh brother! watch out! Hold on to your hair, put on some shin guards and run away! She hits, smacks, pulls hair, yanks things away, throws things, and pushes and will not- I repeat... WILL NOT stop her tantrum until she is absolutely sure she is going to get her way! And even then, she is so mad she doesn't even realize we have given in, and she has gotten her way...again... Or perhaps she's on to something?...hhmmm....?
But then again... I can't get too upset with her because she is just standing up for herself! I mean she has taken quite a beating from that sis of hers! Chayse has been bit, pinched, hit, smacked... you name it! Poor thing! So... now what do I do? Any ideas?
* not really the best picture I could have dug up... but it does show the torture she endured... you can count all of Sloan's 12 teeth on poor little Chaysie's leg!
So, basically- here are my options:
1~ let her be a Diva for my own sanity until this phase passes (and possibly make matters worse)
2~ own up to the duties of being a mom and discipline her (over at our house that's just a good beat-down to show them who's boss  only a time-out...) - ok, please don't send CPS... I'm only wishful thinking! kidding!
3~ let them duke it out, and show Sloan a taste of her own medicine!
Or perhaps there are some better ideas? anyone?

Ok, so on a much lighter note... her little birthday shin-dig went over smoothly! Her 'terrible two-itis' was very well managed! And fortunately the cute little baby Chayse we all know and love was in full affect! 

We also had an amazing day on her actual birthday when I took the day off and concentrated only on Chayse and my family! The best day I've had in a very long time! I told myself I was not going to do anything other than play and concentrate on them! Nothing too out of the ordinary, since I obviously don't focus on my house, dinner, or to-do list! So, from now on, I'm not going to act like I'm any kind of home-maker... I'll just keep hanging out with them, instead of trying (and being unsuccessful) to balance everything! How does everyone else do it? Please let me in on the secret.

Anyway, aside from my tangent... back to our amazing day...

*I mean, the picture is so much more important than getting burned!*

After breakfast, (and luckily preventing a burned finger), we took sloan to Pre-school, and headed off to Target for her pick of a present, and then to the Library.  I was greatly reminded of my love for the library! I have not been there in years, and I don't know why I have let the joy of searching for books slip away.
We then went to pick up the three other members of our family: Sloan, Daddy, and of course Chick-fil-A.
We headed off to Keenland for a picnic under the direct line of departure airplanes - (a favorite of Chayse's).

It's not a great birthday unless you can get away with a good nose pickin!

Is it obvious I was threatening Sloan for a good picture?
Since she put in some effort, I followed through and we were able to swing by the stalls and see the horses.  I don't know if we were suppose to be there- so I left the camera in the car to avoid any curious onlookers!
After nap time we finished the day with one last hurrah!


And after...

Definitely a lesson I learned the hard way- so, if you take anything away from all this rambling... please just take away this... USE WASHABLE PAINT... no, no, don't worry... the rain won't wash it off! Once they see how gorgeous their work is, THEY DON'T WANT IT OUTSIDE!!!!??? WHY DID THEY WAIT TO TELL ME THIS AFTER WE STAINED EVERYTHING IN SIGHT!!?? Now, if anyone knows a way to get acrylic paint off clothes (especially a particular favorite orange polka dot Halloween kitty shirt)- I'm all ears!

OK- so it's not a birthday without a little more sugar right before bed time! I mean, what's the harm?... as long as their teeth get brushed!

Please notice, Sloan can blow out Chayse's candles... but no way can Chayse blow out Sloan's... even though it's not even her birthday?

OK, so after looking at these pictures again I have been greatly reminded how adorable Chaysie is (and Sloanie too of course), and how I'm fortunate her 'two-itis' only comes out every now and then... And, in reality, deep down, I can't help but crack up at the Jekyll and Hyde I am so in love with and hold tight and kiss every chance I get!

I love you Chaysie! I hope you had a wonderful birthday!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

apples, apples, and more apples

hello hello blog! It's been so long! And for no other reason than I just have not been able to find the time to escape and update.  But, nonetheless, it has been lingering in the back of my mind... (amongst other things!)
Especially since my friends have told me my blog was actually helpful to them!
They were inspired to go to the Orchard and buy their cheaper pumpkins there, verses the unexpected, expensive Krogers! Hopefully they did the math aside from trusting my figures! (Thanks Becky and Bryan for the feedback- and for reading my blog for that matter!) And please say a little prayer for them on the 7th with their induction! - We can't wait to meet baby Kennedy!

OK, back on track from my little side note.  So, here is just one of the millions of things we have been up to! (Don't worry, you'll be hearing about the other stuff too! - Sometime at least! - I'm sure you can't wait!! right?!)
Anyway, hopefully you'll enjoy, and perhaps make some apples for yourself (or for someone else)!

So, as promised... here is what we did with our orchard apples!
The girls were in charge of unwrapping the caramels and putting them in the pan.  You can tell, Chayse didn't want to wait for them to be unwrapped before she ate them!
 (and don't worry, the stove was not on yet.)  Although, I did realize this is a great way to keep them occupied! I might need to start doing this on a regular basis!  They sat there concentrating and playing together for a good 45 minutes! (I should have taken advantage and gotten some things done around the house, but instead I just stood there snapping away at the photo ops!)
After the bag of caramels were unwrapped, we added 2 tbls of water, turned on the stove and stirred until melted.
We placed the apples in the sticks,
Cut some out for fun dipping,
added the caramel...
which sloan decided to wash off... (I mean who wants to be healthy and eat an apple without anything extra on it!? - what kind of mother am I, for forcing the caramel on her over the healthy plain version!?)

Now, Chayse on the other hand... the more food the better!

Moving on with the dipping...

and of course decorating... 
and leave it to Chayse for picking, playing, and licking the caramel!  She's so precious!!

And the long awaited for, beautifully decorated, much anticipated, final product!

But of course, we bypassed the directions of waiting a couple hours for them to harden in the fridge.  So instead, we opted for taking them out back and devouring every last drop!
Well, at least that was what I had planned, but I should have known it was just going to be disastrous! Just after the first bite we had a sequence of questionable events... 
1. How do you even tackle eating this apple? 

2. How do we prevent it from sticking to everything?

3. How do we clean this off our face?
 4. Can we just pick off the sprinkles instead?

5. Forget it! This is just too much work!

The next day the chocolate covered apples went over much better!
They were much easier to master!
and much more enjoyable!
Good thing Sloan's only 3! Otherwise, she would probably have a meltdown if she were older and I put this picture of her on here! How hilarious is this one!? I couldn't resist!  (and not to mention the picture of chayse chowing down too! but, then again, I have several of her cramming food in her mouth!! That girl loves to eat!)
Anyway, let me know if you all decide to tackle the sticky mess of caramel apples this fall, or if you do anything else with your apples!
*Just a tip - if you go the caramel route... make sure you have a spatula on hand to clean up the mess! Water doesn't do anything but create more of a disaster!

OK- so now that updating the blog has been crossed off the list... its time to move on to the next thing...

1- Chayse is turning 2 in less than 2 weeks! What am I going to do!?
2- Sloan has new bedroom furniture finally (we found at a garage sale!) So, now, I only need to decorate those bare walls... in princess pictures...
3- I want to paint my cabinets, paint the walls, make drapes, and slipcovers for the couch, chairs and cushions in the kitchen all for under $100...
4- Fix the 'death valley' slide on our new swing set, so the kids (and I) will not be afraid to fly down it and continue tumbling down the Mount Everst of a hill we have!
5- and, of course, not to mention the daily 'to do tasks' that I only tackle every other couple of months or so...
for instance... vacuuming my house! (I think I actually heard my carpets crying out for my help! It's so bad, I had a dream about it the other night!!)

But of course, blogging, taking care of kids, husband, house, packing snacks, lunches, groceries, putting away laundry, and of course, finding the time to go to a CBT meeting that Jim has been wearing everyone out about attending, are much more important than my kids eating 5 month old food off the ground!

Aside from all this chaos I sort through on a daily basis, you obviously now realize only the fun things take precedence! (Especially when it comes to sweets!) So, needless to say, vacuuming will continue to be pushed to the backburner!
Maybe one of these days I'll be able to have a live in nanny, chef, maid, butler and pay them from the money tree in the back yard!