Thursday, May 31, 2007

An Overabundance of Friday Pictures

First off, I received my Secret Swap last week, but I just kept forgetting to download the is the note that Hellojed wrote...

And the cool books...

I just need go on vacation so I can read them...

And guess what? I FINALLY got my cell phone...after I purchased it on Ebay...

So Audrey's hair is getting a little out of control. We have tried rubber bands, clips, head bands, you name it, but she still pulls it out. And I hate picking her up from school with her hair in her eyes. So I cut her bangs.

This is before...

And this is after...Ray thinks she will be mistaken for a boy, I say no way. I will just grow her bangs out when she's three, just like I am doing now with Ashley...

And here are a few pictures from Ashley's swim lessons...she is completely wiped in the evenings because of these! But she loves it and she's doing great. She only has tonight and four nights next week left for the lessons...

Let's Get Physical, Physical

So tomorrow morning at 10:30, Ray and I are having our life insurance policy physicals. We had a life insurance policy before, but we both collectively weighed 100 or so more pounds and the lady who did our physical saw cigars in our house and put it down that we smoked (they were a gift from my brother and Ray will have one on very special occasions, like a good poker game). Anyways, we are pretty sure we will get better rates this time.

Our agent sent us a tip sheet on what to do and avoid prior to the physical. First off, I am not supposed to exercise 24 hours prior. Oh darn. No caffeine that morning and we have to fast from Thursday night until the appointment. So if I am a complete bitch tomorrow morning, you will know why. I NEED my cup of coffee in the morning. I am sure I will have a headache by 7:00 am.

On an unrelated note, I did go to the gym last night...anyone else a complete loser like me and listen to your kid's music even when they aren't in the car? I was totally jamming to Disney's greatest hits....

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Food Fight with a Little Mommy Guilt Thrown in for Good Measure

Ray and I have been pretty fortunate when it comes to our kids eating habits. They both eat well and pretty much will eat anything you put in front of them. The only thing Audrey hasn't really taken a liking to is fruit, but she devours vegetables, so I'm not going to push it right now. I don't want to be making two or three separate meals each night just for the kids. They can eat what Ray and I eat.

Until last night. And maybe it was that Ashley was tired from swim lessons or going back to school after a couple of days off. Who knows. I made honey mustard baked chicken and parmesan risotto. Nothing fancy, normal stuff. She immediately stated she didn't like the risotto. Fine. Our take on foods is that she has to try it once, and then if she doesn't like, she doesn't like it. There are plenty of other foods she will eat.

She would not even take a bite. She kept making excuses and playing around and saying the bite I was making her eat was too big. She had eaten all of her other food (chicken, corn, cantaloupe) and just needed to take one bite.

Finally, I gave her a fork with the bite on it and took her plate away. She whined about it, and I said fine, your plate in going in the trash. It was her precious princess plate we had bought at the Disney store a couple of weeks ago. She still whined so I went to toss it in the trash. The trash can in our kitchen is a pull out one underneath our counter top. So in my frustrated state, I wasn't paying attention as I was pleading with Ashley to just take a bite and when I went to toss it in the trash can, it hit the counter and literally broke in half.

Ashley fell apart. Big crocodile tears fell as she cried. I picked her up and hugged her and felt like the worst mom on the planet. I shouldn't have gotten frustrated, I shouldn't have made a big deal out of it. I should have just patiently and calmly waited for her to take her bite. Instead, I lost my cool, got frustrated and broke her plate.

And yes, after all that, she did take her bite and finished her milk and calmed down. Then our neighbors came over and the first thing she said to them?

"Mommy broke my princess plate."


Monday, May 28, 2007

Tagged some more...

I was tagged by Just Another Ordinary Day for this...

You Are Vanilla Ice Cream

Your personality is anything but "vanilla"
You're a risk taker, who's up for anything new.
You go well with anyone and fit into any situation.

You are most compatible with rocky road ice cream.

I am really not a risk taker, I have no idea how it came up to this...

I was also tagged by EC for the favorite restaurant are my top five...

1. Chipotle - I LOVE mexican, and I love things all mixed together (casserole, anyone?). So their bowl - rice, meat, cheese, salsa - is perfection...

2. Pei Wei - For those of you who love PF Changs, this is the low budget version. Great for takeout which Ray and I do kind of frequently...

3. Cheesecake Factory - Peanut Butter Cheesecakes anyone? Just go for dessert...

4. Maggiano's - Great italian food...kind of fancy, at least makes us feel like we are eating fancy...although we have only been there a handful of times...

5. Sonic - I have to put this on there. We have a Sonic really, really close to our house. We honestly don't "eat" there that often, we just get dessert. Peanut Butter milkshakes are my fav (see a common theme here?)

I tag whoever wants to do these...

Friday, May 25, 2007

Friday Pictures....from Myrtle Beach

Hayden and Ashley at Brookgreen Gardens
Show some love Ashley!
Bedtime always started out so good...
Miss I'm Too Big For My Britches and Think I am Almost Four Like My Sister

Note: Most of the pictures were taken by my neighbor with her kick ass camera that I totally want.

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day...

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Ten Things Meme

I was tagged by Lawyer Mama to do a Ten Things Meme (I will get to the other one this week EC..). She said we could mix it up, so since you guys don't really, really hear about Ray, here are ten things about him:

1. He is four days younger than me, born in the same hospital as me, had the same pediatrician as me (who later died when that plane crashed into the 14th street bridge in D.C.). Oh, and our Moms went to high school together.
2. He has a brother who is 8 years younger than him.
3. He graduated from Virginia Tech with two degrees - Finance and Management Science.
4. He would really like me to massage his feet, and I never do.
5. He has a full head of hair (thank GOD) unlike his younger brother or his dad.
6. He has lost a ton of weight recently as well, I think his total is around 45 pounds. He lost 6 inches in his waist.
7. He watches What Not To Wear with me and enjoys it.
8. He can also make a pretty damn good cake.
9. No, you may not have him.
10. He puts up with me. I am not sure anyone else in the world would.

Onto another note, I don't normally discuss my great tv watching ability, but did anyone watch the season finale of Lost last night? Holy Heck, that was a good one...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


I am one of those people that stress about the small stuff...but I have actually gotten better over the past few years. I especially worry about being on time to stuff. If there is one thing I remember from my band days in high school it was this motto: To be early is to be on time, to be on time is to be late, and to be late is to be left out.

So yesterday I get a call from daycare saying Audrey has a fever. I tell the owner I will be there as soon as possible. Without any issues, it's a 20 minute drive from my office (including the long walk to employee parking at the hospital I work at). I quickly shut down my computer and pretty much run out the door.

I try calling Ray, but the really really annoying cell phone I have that had been charging all night is dying. (Side note: Ray is going to try and go to a Verizon store TODAY).

I am on my way to daycare when the highway comes to a complete halt. Okay, deep breaths, I will make it there, maybe just not as fast. Then they direct all the traffic off of the highway I was on to another highway going the completely wrong way to go and into an area of Raleigh I have never been to in the year that I have lived here. Well SHIT. Turns out some guy led police on a chase from two counties over and ended up right where I was in a shoot out. What fun.

So the stress starts. I do have GPS in the van, so I load in the address for daycare and look. But still, I am stressing. Is this really the way to go? What if there are new roads the GPS doesn't have? I didn't recognize anything around me, and that made me more stressed. I get my cell phone to work long enough to try and call Ray who is of course in a meeting AND DOESN'T ANSWER HIS PHONE.

Now I am on the verge of tears. But then, what good is getting so upset about this? I calm down, I finally make it to a point in the road where I recognize my surroundings and I make it to daycare. Audrey had a fever, but it was weird. She was really warm under her arms and around her neck, but not really her head and her legs and arms felt fine.

I took her home and gave her medicine and she slept for three hours. Ray is home with her today. She spiked a slight fever in the middle of the night, but plays and acts just fine. Who knows. But it's just one more thing to stress about...

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Vacation Update and My Purse (very creative title)

Our mini vacation in Myrtle Beach was great. Ashley loved staying with her friend Hayden, although going to bed at night was a challenge. First the two of them would start of giggling, and then they would start arguing and someone would end up crying. By this time, it was normally after 10:00pm and they were just so tired.

We had great company, ate out alot, and saw alot of Harleys. Yup, we were there for Biker Week 2007. It was actually not that big of deal as we weren't staying on the strip. It caused a few traffic woes, but other than that, Ray and I have seen worse. What I think is absolutely crazy though? If you are over 21 in South Carolina, you don't have to wear a helmet. It was crazy the amount of people we saw at the border of North and South Carolina stopping to put on or take off their helmets. I can understand just cruising the strip at 20 mph, but at highway speeds?

Anyways, I told Isabel I would do this that has been floating around. That and I have a couple of memes to do this week as well.

Yes, this is my purse. I know it's small, but I really don't have a lot to carry in it. Do notice I still have my ghetto cell phone though. But right behind my purse is what we carry around with us when we have the kids. That backpack has more stuff in it than you want to know...

Yes, that's it. Very important camera, flash drive, wallet, my beloved chicken poop chapstick from SJ, and my favorite lipstick. I really don't know why I carry around that poker chip from Bally's, but I tend to be a very superstitious person, and getting rid of it just feels unlucky. So it stays.

If anyone wants to join in on the purse fun, let me know and I will put a link in.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Fun Monday - The Crappy Poem I Have to Write

So this week's Fun Monday is brought to us by Nikki at What the Hell Do I Do. She has a good one this week and here are her rules...

1. Write a short poem. It can be about anything and it doesn't even have to be good.

2. Whip out your crayons, markers, paint, etc. and illustrate your poem (or have your kid, dog or cat do it).

3. Post your poem and illustration on your blog next Monday (uh...duh.)

So I am totally going to kind of cheat I guess...but here goes.


I'm a cool mom
Cause I love to cook

But what I love to cook the most
Doesn't involve just measly toast

Pancakes must be the thing I do right
As Ashley thinks I cook all night

Working on those weekend pancakes
That somehow Ashley thinks fly in the air
She must have been dreaming
or kidnapped by a bear
who loved to throw pancakes into the air

The End of the Crappiest Poem ever written.

So this poem comes from this, what I was given as part of my Mother's Day gift from Ashley. I have never thrown pancakes in the air, so I have no idea where she got that one from....Oh, and I'm not 32. I will be in a few months, but not now. Just thought I would clarify...

Have fun reading the other poems!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Friday Pictures - Old School

I had to hunt for some pictures off Ray's laptop since I forgot to bring my cord to download pictures off my camera.

This is Ashley and I in Disney in October of 2004...

Ray and I in Hawaii in January 2002...Ashley when she was a few days old...

Audrey the day she was born...

Thursday, May 17, 2007


Ashley has stopped coming in our room every night in the middle of the night. Now it's only once or twice a week. And when she does, she normally has had a dream she feels she needs to share with me at 4:00am.

The other night, it was a dream about her toys being able to talk (and she did not watch Toy Story recently). Then it was about Papa Bear from the Berenstain Bears (anyone else totally annoyed with these books???) losing his shirt. She will have bad dreams too, but if she doesn't offer the information about those, I normally just hold her tight and tell her it's going to be alright.

She has dreams at nap time at school. The one the other day was about how she had lost her front tooth and the tooth fairy didn't come because she was stuck in her chair all day that was on fire. And this was relayed to me as a good dream. Weird.

Last night we went out to dinner, and she told me about a few more dreams she has had. I am amazed she remembers them as I don't remember any of mine anymore.

Anyone else out there with kids having vivid dreams? Is it just their imaginations in overdrive?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Whose Child Is She??

Ray: 5'10"
Amy: 5'7"
Ashley: Pretty darn tall for being almost four

Audrey: Shorty-pants

Ray: Tan complexion
Amy: Tan complexion
Ashley: We think she is part Puerto Rican like her Grandpa

Audrey: Whitey-whitekins

Ray: Brown eyes
Amy: Brown eyes
Ashley: Brown eyes

Audrey: What the hell color is this?

Seriously, what color are her eyes?

We are off to Myrtle Beach for a few days for some rest and relaxation. Ray has been working a ton lately and has been looking forward to this for a while now. We are going down with our favorite neighbors, so I think Ashley will have a blast playing with her friend Hayden.

The facial and pedicure were great last night, but when I got home, I felt like ass. Headache, joint ache, feverish. I seriously thought I was coming down with the flu. This morning? Totally fine. Very, very weird.

I hope everyone has a great hump day...

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

10 Year Reunion

I was watching a little bit of TV this weekend and saw a clip about the graduation ceremonies at Virginia Tech and an update on the campus. Then it hit me.

I graduated 10 years ago.

10 years ago.

From college.

Holy crap.

Has it really been that long? And what in the world have I done in that 10 years?

Married, owned a couple of houses, had two kids, moved states.

Traveled, witnessed births, attended my first funeral.

Worked for three different companies (I am so not counting that company I worked for only about a month), made new friends, lost some friends.

Would I change anything? I think those who know me best would say absolutely not.

When I was in college, I thought that was the best. I had freedom, I had responsibilities that weren't burdensome, I had friends. But I didn't know the best was yet to come. College prepared me for the world beyond, but I am having the best time right now.

Life couldn't be any better.

The day Audrey was born...

Especially since I am going to go get a facial and a pedicure tonight....

Monday, May 14, 2007

Fun Monday

First off, Happy Belated Mother's Day to all out there...our cable modem went out on Saturday and has yet returned, so the poignant post I was going to write, well, didn't get written.

Instead, you get my Fun Monday post for this week....courtesy of Willowtree. Go check him out for participants.

Our challenge? Drinking vessels.

At this point due to the shortest person that lives in our house, the most important drinking vessel is my coffee mug. First, we have the mac-daddy coffee maker with accompanying coffee bean vacuum because only the best for the sleepiest people...

And then, my favorite travel mug (which should be no surprise to anyone).

And this is why I drink coffee in the morning. This little stinker was up at 5:00am.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Friday Pictures - A Day in the Life of Audrey

Audrey slept better last night, still got up twice, but went right back to sleep. My cold is pretty much gone. I still have a $160 speeding ticket, but it's Friday thank God.
At least she entertains herself while I cook dinner...
Playing with Daddy before bedtime...
We are in trouble, she is really young to be liking purses so much...

A final breathing treatment before bed.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Do bad things really happen in threes?

I normally don't bitch and moan and complain and cry and whine, but today is going to be one of those days.

Audrey had her followup ENT appointment yesterday regarding her tubes in her ears. Ray and I were pretty anxious for this appointment as Audrey has not been sleeping well lately and we were wondering if it was an ear infection. Of course, her ears are fine and look great.

So then WHY IN THE HELL was she up from 12:30am until 4:00am last night??? Why? She screamed, she cried, she demanded I read her a book at one point (in the middle of the night you will try anything to get the kids back to sleep), she drank countless sippy cups of milk. Who knows. We gave her Tylenol thinking it was her teeth as well as putting Orajel on her gums. Didn't help. She finally crashed. But at that point she had already woken up Ashley who retreated to our room to avoid the screaming that was coming from Audrey's room.

And a head cold? Yup, totally have one. Not really sure how I am going to get better if I can't get any sleep.

Tired? Check.
Lots of snot draining? Check.
That time of the month? Check.
Got a speeding ticket on the way to work? Check, check.

And that's an even better way to start the day then just not getting enough sleep. Get pulled over in what you thought was a 45 mph zone since YOU COULD SEE THE SPEED LIMIT sign that said 45 mph. Nope, according to the cop, I was technically in the 35 mph. And remember a few months ago I got a ticket and in the great state of North Carolina you can do prayer for judgement where you don't pay for the first ticket you get as long as you don't get another ticket for three years? I should have known I wouldn't make it three years.

And, and, AND? I have to sit in an all day meeting starting at 9:00am.

Okay, I feel a little better. Thanks for letting me vent.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Happy Birthday Dad!!

My Dad is 52 today. Yes, I know. He's young. Very young to have two children who are going to be 32 this October. And to Ashley and Audrey, he is known as Grandpa Fuzzy. The week Ashley turned two, we joined my Dad and my Stepmom and her family in the Outer Banks. Ashley got a first hand look at why I have to wax my eyebrows and lip and hence the name Grandpa Fuzzy. You know the men you see on the beach with the hairy backs? Totally my Dad.

From that week at the beach (sorry, I couldn't find a picture documenting the hairy back)...he's the one next to me holding the dog...

I don't remember much from my childhood specifically. But I do remember how hard my Dad worked. When he and my Mom were married, he worked a full time job with the Federal Government, worked part time at various places (Pizza Hut and a Best Western just to name a few) and went to school part time. After my parents were divorced when I was ten, my Dad had my brother and I every other weekend. It's those weekends I remember. We took trips to DC, went hiking, and visited our Grandmother every weekend he had us. Those memories will stay with me forever.

My Dad has many, many years ahead of him. My Grandmother, his Mom, is still going strong. And my Dad and my Stepmom are building their dream house right now. And they definitely deserve it.

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

Lawyer Mama wrote a compelling post yesterday about why we tend to write about all the bad mommy stuff on our blogs. At first, I thought to myself, I don't do that. Then I looked back. And I totally do.

But why do I do it? Because I need all of your help. Remember when Ashley was coming out of her room at bedtime? I received so many emails and comments with awesome ideas that totally worked. I incorporated a few of the ideas and ever since then (knock on wood) she has stayed in her room. Without writing about it and getting feedback, I would still be pulling my hair out over this.

I am still a rookie, and having this network of friends out there that can help me out when I need it works for me.

Yes, I have my good "mommy" days. I have days were I am patient all day long, where Ashley doesn't whine most of the time, where Audrey doesn't try to bite us. But more often then not, I get impatient or I yell at Ashley for pushing her sister and then regret and guilt step in.

As we know from all the media stories as of late, we as moms in this day and age are doing more for our kids and more with our kids than mothers in the past. What comes with that is a little bit of good, a little bit of bad and a little bit of ugly. Good? Ray and Ashley having "date night" Saturday and having a great time the whole time without any whining or crying. Bad? Audrey trying to bite us and then looking at us and saying "no bite". Ugly? Ashley constantly trying to manipulate her sister, hold her hand, pick her up, whatever even though Audrey completely hates it. And crying and yelling pursue.

I think a lot about what my kids will remember about me and their childhood when they grow up. I hope they look back and think, I had a great Mom. She was fun, she danced, she played and she was just plain fun. What do you want your kids to remember about you and their childhood?

Monday, May 07, 2007

Fun Monday - Back where it all started

Vicki started this whole Fun Monday thing, and now it is back to her. The first one we posted a view from our front door in the winter, and now it is the view from the front (and back) door for the spring. Enjoy and go see Vicki for the full list of participants...

We just bought this American Flag this weekend from a vendor at a street fair we went to. And yes, we made sure it was made in America.The newly landscaped playground so that if a kid falls off the swings, they won't impale themselves with rocks.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Teaching - What am I doing??

All that talk yesterday about the bullying and how to deal with it got me thinking about how I would deal with it when I start teaching. And then that just gets me nervous as there are days where I doubt what I am doing. I mean, really, who do I think I am changing careers after thirty? And what will the other teachers think? What if I can't handle it? What if I don't pass the PRAXIS? What if I do all this and it doesn't work out and I just threw away $20,000 on a master's degree?

Don't get me wrong, I am thrilled at the aspect of being a teacher. The more I think about it, the more excited I get. After every classroom observation I do I think, Hell Yea, I can do that! But I tend to second-guess decisions on a daily basis and I worry to much about not being prepared. I think about how the teachers I have observed so far have told me the hardest part of the job is the parents. Great. But, I deal with crappy people all the time in my current job, so I should be okay, right?

I do have someone to look up to, though. Out of college, Ray took a job as an IT consultant as he had a Management Science degree from Virginia Tech. For most of the six years until Ashley was born, Ray traveled. But by the time I got pregnant with Ashley, he was burnt out. He hated answering to someone else. He was sick of traveling (although I loved all the airline miles and Marriott points). His dream job? Real estate. So he went for it. He passed the real estate exam, got hooked up with a mom and son team in Virginia, and off he went on a new career the same time he had a brand new baby at home. And now? He's thriving. He's loves his career and his decision and he's happy and I'm happy he's happy.

I just get nervous...who doesn't?

Wednesday, May 02, 2007


When I picked the girls up from school yesterday, Ashley had a note on her sheet that she had become aggressive towards another boy in her class and pushed him. I talked to the teacher about it, and she said that Ashley had indeed pushed a child and it was very out of character for her.

When we got in the van, I asked Ashley who she pushed. She named the child who Ray and I both know gets in trouble in class all.the.time. He is one of those kids that gets dropped off when the center opens, and is there until almost closing time. I have witnessed numerous occasions just in the few minutes I am in there a day where he is getting in trouble. We have also been around him and his parents in a social setting, and they are extremely strict and not as loving. I am not saying they don't love their child, it just seemed as if hugs and kisses weren't the norm in their house.

Ashley told me he was teasing her and she didn't make a good choice. They teach the kids at her school to "make good choices" and to choose to walk away when a kid makes you mad or frustrated or whatever. We also told Ashley to let whoever is making her mad know that they made her mad and she wouldn't play with them. Ray wanted to teach Ashley to say "Whatever", but then that might be construed as teasing as well (although funny).

So we are hoping she takes after Ray and just reached a breaking point with this kid and lashed out. It's hard, you want your kids to stand up for themselves, but to teach a three year old to stand up for themselves when they have been pushed or teased by talking and not pushing or teasing back is hard.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Moving to NC

One year ago today, I started the job I am currently in. Just a little over a year ago, we moved our family three hours from all the grandparents and friends that we have lived near for our entire lives.

It was hard for me...Ray had been wanting to move to North Carolina for some time. I kept pushing back that I wanted to be near family and the friends that I had since graduating college.

But then the housing prices kept rising. And the traffic got worse. And no one seemed to be happy since everyone was in a hurry to get somewhere. I had worked at the same place for six years, and I was pretty sure I wasn't going to be promoted anytime soon as I had just been there too long. And I just didn't care.

Then one day we took Ashley to a park that had a train. It was a nice day, we ran into friends we knew. I was newly pregnant with Audrey, but not so pregnant I felt like crap. We rode the train and then let Ashley play on a playground. She was going down a slide that was enclosed when I watched a little boy who was probably at least six years old run into the slide from the bottom to get to the top. In the process, he literally ran on top of Ashley. My blood boiled. Ashley was screaming, and I looked at the kid. I don't exactly remember what I said to him, but it didn't matter. He didn't understand a word I said and neither did his parents who just looked at me. No apologizes, nothing. I decided then and there we were going to move.

It doesn't matter what ethnicity the child was, or even the fact he didn't understand me. I am not making this about race or language barriers. It was about the fact that the parents didn't care and didn't seem to even want to care. And I know I can meet these same people in North Carolina. I know there are parents everywhere who let their kids wild at the playgrounds and shopping malls. It was just that on top of the hour and a half commutes I had to work even leaving at 6:00am. It was that and the Fridays in the summer when the entire place would grind to a standstill at around 3:00pm.

I love Virginia, I really do. There was so much to do there, so much shopping, Washington DC, baseball games at Camden Yards, wineries, museums, I could go on. I don't mean this to be a cut on Northern Virginia at all as I still "know" people that live there. But I was done. I wanted and needed a change of life. And I am really glad I did.