Category Archives: Kids

Cookies with Santa

We have had a very full week. Something scheduled for every day and/or evening. Between 2 Christmas parties and a parade and a school Christmas event, it’s a week of festive fun.

Tonight was Cookies with Santa, with a silent auction, the first graders’ performance and of course, cookies and Santa.

Finn wanted to wear his elf pajamas. Here is Santa asking Finn what he was doing there when he was supposed to be back at the North Pole making toys.


Finn’s face was so funny as he tried to process it all.


He is one cute elf though. So is his non-elf sister.

Now if I could just get that elf to do some of my shopping or gift wrapping.

A long overdue update

It’s a cold and rainy day here. Laundry is going, the kids are playing nicely with each other (mostly), and the coffee in my cup is still fairly hot. It may be dreary outside but that makes for a fairly good morning in here so I thought I would give an all-around update.


They both got haircuts the other day but for Finn, especially, it just makes him look so old!
I used to cut his hair but it was just stressing me out too much so we tried a kids’ salon. Much better experience. Sorry, no specific after picture…but other pictures in this post show his new haircut.

Mia has a pretty big week: AWANA awards ceremony tonight and preschool graduation tomorrow. That girl likes special events so she’s been pretty excited about this week for a while. Pictures and details on those later.


Still on the market. After a flurry of showings and lots of activity each week, it’s been very quiet lately. Not going to lie, that’s been pretty discouraging–for me at least. I have to remind myself that it hasn’t been on the market that long and that someday I’ll look back and see how perfect the timing all was…but knowing that doesn’t make the here and now easy.

And so we walk the fine line of still living in this house, doing things like we normally would, and having a constant fear of seeing our realtor’s number pop up on the caller id at a time when I’m not absolutely ready to leave the house in 30 minutes. Oh, you know…when stuff like this is happening:
See? I can still be a fun mom when the house is on the market!
(That was more for myself to hear and remember than for you…)

So, while some days nothing happening on the house front is hard, there are days when I breathe a sigh of relief that we didn’t have to show it. Especially when we had special guests in the house:
Yep! My parents are in the States!

Their flight was a little delayed but the kids were so, so good at waiting patiently. They sat in this spot and watched 2 full flights come through before my parents came.CAM00903
Mark was sitting in the car and I texted him saying that somebody switched out our kids…

My parents will be in the States for a really long time this visit so we hope to get to see them quite a bit. Because who else but a grandma will play spa with a little girl in the middle of the day?

Or play songs for them?

I promise my dad was here the whole time too. I just remembered on the last day that I hadn’t taken many pictures and Mom seemed to be in most of them. Next time we see them I’ll do better…


They stayed with us just for a couple of days before they had to move on to other family events. My nephew graduated high school yesterday and we couldn’t make it but we watched the live stream.

Between that and texting with my sister during the ceremony, it was almost like I was sitting in the stands with them. Except I wasn’t freezing like they were.


Still enjoying his new job and while we’re looking forward to the day when he won’t have to spend so long commuting, the longer days leading into summer really help it feel like we still get to do fun stuff with him after he gets home.
Wonder what they were talking about?



Still mopping floors. Just kidding. Mark and the kids did a great job spoiling me for Mother’s Day. I was able to go to my bed and just have some time to myself to read. Sometimes, it’s the little things that can really make a day special.

I did kind of have a little bit of a pity party for myself at the end of the day because I had to let go of my expectations that I could just take a day completely off… We had a ton of rain coming in and this house is still on the market, so Mark had to mow and I had to do bath and bedtime by myself (with kids who were not remembering what day it was, if you know what I mean…). And to top it all off I had to clean house. Really, not a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but cleaning on mother’s day just doesn’t seem right… I know that it’s unrealistic to think that a mom can really just tune it all out and do nothing – and Mark did try, he really did – but you know…a mom can whine sometimes too, right? Everybody else is really good at it.

Other stuff, in general:

We’re hoping we can squeeze in a few trips this summer to see family. Between the house and finances and work and Mia starting school in August, it’s taking some juggling.  When the kids haven’t seen their grandparents and some cousins in almost 2 years, sometimes you just have to do what it takes to make it happen.

We just got thrown another curve ball this week, which after the last few months…I go back and forth between saying “ha, of course this would be happening” and “you have GOT to be kidding me”. Just when we think things are on track, we feel the ground shifting again. But then again, we don’t direct our own steps and when it seems like the path has more rocks and holes than we think it should we know that they’re all there for a reason… And so we wait and trust…even when that’s so hard.

(I know that last section is pretty cryptic…sorry…it’s like a lame facebook status update that says -“Why does stuff like this happen to me?” and then leaves you hanging. I always hate it when people do that. And here I go and do it too. 🙂 Ask me in person and I’ll tell you. Just sometimes timing for public internet posting isn’t right, you know?)

Um, and no…nobody is pregnant.  Just thought I would at least get that off your list of wondering what I’m talking about. Because I know you can hear me saying “ha, of course this would be happening” and “you have GOT to be kidding me” to that kind of news…

When it’s one of those days…

You just end it early and go to bed…

Yesterday was just one of those days.

The day started off well enough. I got up earlier than I usually do, which isn’t my favorite thing to do but I work on Mondays and being 40 minutes away makes running home to get the house ready for a showing not an option. So, I’ve started leaving the house show-ready before we leave. That hasn’t proved to be necessary yet, but we all know it will happen the one day I don’t wash breakfast dishes or put the nice bedding on the bed.

Anyway, I woke up earlier so that I could get that done and was ready to leave the house earlier than usual because it also happened to be the kids’ music program at school yesterday morning. I grab all our stuff, head into the garage, and go to open the car…it’s locked. Locked. With my keys inside and my husband at work 40 minutes away. Um, instant panic. How am I getting my kids to school? Of all mornings. Poor Mia. She had been looking forward to her music program for months.

Yes, I cried. I really try to keep it together for my kids because if I’m a mess it’s just going to scare them, but it’s been a long time since I felt so helpless. And so heartbroken that I might make my kids miss one of their biggest days this year.

I knew we had an extra key in the file cabinet. No problem. Except I couldn’t find the extra key. Big problem. I was trying to text and call Mark but he was in a meeting and couldn’t answer so it was up to me. I ran through all the options in my head. I was on the phone with my boss who said she could come and get me but we would miss the program, obviously…so that was out. I thought of a locksmith – I’ll pay whatever to get my kids there but we would still miss the program. We were now under an hour before it started and I still had to get out of my driveway. Don’t tell Mark but I briefly thought of trying to break into the car myself but thought the damage to the window probably wasn’t the best decision. Finally, about 15 minutes after this whole thing started I remembered where we decided to put the keys. Perfect place…totally makes sense *now*…but when you’re emotionally frazzled nothing that makes sense is what you think of first you know. I tried all the keys and nothing worked. Unbelievable. I knew it had to, so I calmly tried again and finally got the key to work! Mia started jumping up and down and we rushed into the car and got on our way. 3 minutes down the road, Mark calls me. I cry again – this time from just relief – and he’s amazed I remembered we had an extra key in the file cabinet. I was amazed I remembered where to get the key to get the key. That’s just so many keys just beyond my reach…

The day continued with several other typical “are you kidding me?” types of situations, but my kids had made it to the program on time, nobody fell apart on the stage, and I had pictures and video to remember the fun part of that day.

By the time evening rolled around, I put the kids to bed, cleaned up from dinner and went to bed myself. Today would be a new day and we could start over.

We’ve had a few sibling spats and I locked the whole playroom as a timeout but that pushed the reset button enough that we’re back to semi-normal. My house is clean. I have fresh flowers to enjoy – one of the few perks to having a house on the market…


And my car is unlocked, ready for a run to Sonic for a special drink if things start unraveling too much for me. A new day indeed.