Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Happy Birthday

So here is my attempt to post pictures even if they don't fit together. Here is just our life in photo forms. Last week my husband turned 26. We had a modest celebration for him, but it was an awesome one. I think it's so important to show our girls that life is to be celebrated and that we are pretty lucky ladies that this man was born.
Happy Birthday to you... Happy Birthday to you...

Happy Birthday dear Daddy! Happy Birthday to you!

What kind of birthday would it have been without Birthday Bash ice cream?

And of course you're never too old for birthday candles. 

We never quite figured out what the contents of the ice cream was that made it a bash, and everyone kept asking what is the blue stuff? We cocked our heads to the side, shrugged our shoulders, and kept eating anyway. 

My little girl also had a football game last weekend, and after recovering for the most part from a weird fever virus, she cheered her little heart out. Doesn't she look like a teenager here?

She is getting so tall, and by this time next year I think we may just be the same height. 

It was very unique that I had the whole weekend off and it was much needed. I loved all the family time we got in and the relaxing atmosphere that having nothing to do and no where to be offers.

I need some tips and advice for getting two very independent little girls to look at the camera at the same time. It seems like regardless of my attempts, only one of them look into the lens at any given moment.

It is also a given that the moment the other looks away, the remaining child looks into the lens. Ugh.

Happy Tuesday!

Saturday, August 27, 2011


It's Friday night and I survived my first week of the semester and Riley's first week back to preschool, but barely. On the eve of Riley's 4th day of preschool she spiked a temp and missed her 4th day, and the next day I spiked a temp and felt as though I was hit by a bus, but thought maybe our thermometer was broke because could it be true that the both of us are febrile? So I made my husband take his and Raigan's temperature, but theirs' was normal.

My friends are out on the town tonight and instead of me joining them and spending much needed time with my girlfriends, I'm sitting on the couch with my husband eating Fritos and going through old photos on my hard drives that I swear I will one day have organized. I did finally organize all the ones of 2010, so maybe by the time 2012 rolls around 2011s will be organized. They probably are annoyed that I didn't go out (that or I'm being desperately vein here), but I am just wiped out.

Going through all the photos I realized how much of our lives I leave out of this blog and that it's just a tiny glimps of some of the parts of our lives. A little part of me is saddened by this because I want to look back and remember all of it, but I guess I would need a reality show crew to do that and would probably need to apply mascara a bit more frequently.

Here are some of the pictures I had forgotten that were even taken.

(I think Riley and I look like twins, only in different sizes in this one.)

I have the baby crazies again and have the really strong urge to complete our family by having a third child, but unfortunately this is something Brandon and I have different opinions about. He pretty much has himself to blame though for me wanting to have more children with him because he's such a great, loving dad. I know our third would be no exception, plus him and I make pretty cute babies.

Looking through the photos I also thought, why do I always think that I don't take enough pictures? I have to be crazy, because there are so many! I plan to post way more photographs here that I take on a daily basis, even if they aren't cohesive or have words to match them. I'm just going to post the pictures because they describe our lives so much better than any collection of words I could string together. Add that to my, "I'm going to do better list" I'm working on.

I also thought that I should be reading and studying the interpretation of EKGs instead, but these pictures are way more fun, even though heart rhythms are super interesting to me, I need a bit of a mindless break sometimes. 

The whole photo recall thing actually began because I was searching for photos that my husband took the other day while I was giving our very messy little eater a bath in the sink. The empty half of the sink that is, because the other half contained rinsed, but dirty dishes (this is real life).We have given up on the bibs honestly, because they don't make bibs that cover your head of hair and your arms, legs, or wherever else this child manages to get her food. Someday she goes into the sink and some nights it's straight into the bathtub. I think there's something so cute and nostalgic about scrubbing your baby in the kitchen sink. It says," hey, you're still my tiny little tot that is small enough to fit in the kitchen sink and I'm going to enjoy scrubbing you until you're too big to fit." I love it. She loves it.

Tomorrow Riley will be cheering at one of the football games and I am 100% impressed with how she is doing. Not only the cheers and cheerleading related stuff, but how she pays attention the whole time, follows direction, and is respectful and energetic with her teammates. I know all mother's are bias, but I'm really proud of who these little tiny people are becoming.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

New and Old Beginnings

My little girl started back at her last year of preschool this Monday. She already has caught her first virus and spiked a fever last night, missing her 4th day of preschool this morning. A nice welcome back, I'm glad she's included though.

I also started my last semester of college.

My little girl has also started her ballet career and I'm in love with her in a little tights and a leotard.Well I'm in love with her anyway, but she looks really cute. 

My little one who thinks she is the same age as her sister gets so upset when she doesn't get to do the same things. I for sure when cave and let her do it if their school would allow her to or the ballet class would take her, but you have to be two and she doesn't hit that milestone until December. December is going to be an awesome month, I can already feel it. She found the chalkboard at ballet though and it occupied her.

Friday, August 19, 2011

I have a new appreciation for American food. All of it in it's unhealthy, fatty, greasy glory. It doesn't always have to be unhealthy though or even complicated.

I also appreciate (that may be a stretch) that I have a very picky 4 year old on my hands. 
So to make things more fun I let her pick her own things. I offer her a somewhat healthy array of choices and let her control what she eats. For dinner the other night? We had a very modest taco bar.

I cooked some lean ground beef with a small chopped onion, minced garlic, a dash of chili powder and a dash of cinnamon. 

Then put toppings: cheese, shredded lettuce, RoTel, and sour cream into these fun containers I bought a while back from the Dollar Tree. You might recognize them from our Easter party. Containers like this make me happy, so it's fun to integrate them into every day use even though it means doing more dishes, it makes it fun. Fun for Riley to choose what she wants and gives her a sense of independence.

You know she ate ALL of her taco and even told me that I make the best tacos. 

We also had corn, peaches, and left over Mexican rice. Easy-peasy.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I am a dreamer. 

On Sunday there was a raccoon in our garage. True story (and believe me, I wish it wasn’t haha). We had to take everything out of the garage to find the raccoon and get it out because those things are scary creatures and because Riley resides directly above the garage and could hear it scratching all night. 

We live in Kentucky and have problems like coons being the garage (and I say that in my hillbilliest of accents). When I was in Japan and someone asked where I was from, they undoubtly knew where to Kentucky was thanks to Colonel Sanders; Kentucky Fried Chickens are frequent there. 

So after we got the coon out and started to put things back into the garage. I had a gathering of clothes and was trying to hang them onto one of many very large nail we have that. I kept trying even though it wasn’t really working because I’m short and the fact that there were just way too many hangers to fit on the nail and the weight of it was too much. They were nice clothes though and I didn’t just want to lay them down and there was nowhere else to hang them. My husband’s step father was helping us caring stuff back in and I guess he asked my husband what I was doing, when my husband replied (he had already told me it wasn’t going to work), “She thinks she can get those clothes on that nail, and when she gets an idea in her head, she doesn’t stop until she does it.”

And I replied, “So?! I don’t think that’s a bad quality to have!” 

I got the clothes on the damn nail, thank-you-very-much, but then the nail fell out of the wall. 

Regardless of what happened I was very pleased that my husband perceives me as a do’er, a go getter, a dreamer, someone that doesn’t give up. I think that’s really great.  That’s exactly the person I hope to be, and the women I want to teach my girls to be. I want to teach them that if you want something bad enough you can make it happen. You have to be ready to have back up plans, jump hurdles, shed a few tears, pick up a pile of clothes and hammer a nail back into the wall, but almost anything is attainable as long as you work hard enough and possess enough determination. 

There are things in life that I look back on and think wow, I did that. I have no idea how, but I pulled myself up by the bootstraps and did it. Like the semester I got through pregnant with Raigan, or the one I got through right after I had Raigan when I was pumping in my car before I had to go to clinical. That was the same semester that people without any children at all that didn’t even hold jobs at the time couldn’t pass but I did.  The fact that we bought our house so young and overcoming obstacles or one of my girls awesome parties that I planned and threw during craziest of times in our lives. I think being a mother gives you this crazy superpower trait that allows you to go beyond and do things that you didn’t think you were capable of doing. It forces you to be creative and gives you a driving force that is incomparable to anything else. 

It’s a pretty neat that I got two beautiful girls and this motivation as a bonus.  There are lots more things I want to do in my life and things I want to be better at. I spent a lot of time traveling on my way home from Japan and after reading the book, The Happiness Project by Gretchin Rubin I made myself a list of all the things that would make me  happy and things that would make me happy if I was better at. I hope to implement a few of those things with the upcoming school year that starts next Monday, perhaps I'll share some of those soon, because sometimes telling others holds one more accountable, but in the meantime...

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”
 Mary Oliver

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


I know I have to publish something because I have been on a blogging hiatus for the past 10 days while in Japan and usually I just throw up a bunch of pictures when I can't find any words, but I am embarrassed to say that I take more pictures or my children's breakfast than I took in the past nearly 10 days while across the world. Here are a handful though.

Very unlike me, but it is what it is. Let me just say that I was a little overwhelmed by the whole being in another country; and in Tokyo, one of the busiest cities in the world. 

I have been to some large cities and of course New York had a lot of fast paced hustle and bustle, but Japanese people; they are totally hardcore. They are running in designer suits (not your casual morning jog either-I'm taking full on sprint) to make that train or get to their destination. They have places to be and people to see and apparenly the Tokyo workplace does not offer many graces. 

I would also like to mention that Japan is light years ahead of the west when it comes to toilets and recycling. Their toilets have remotes and warmed seats and I thought about bringing one back, but I don't think I would have made it through customs. Haha could you imagine? Hey! What's the hold up?" "ehh, this lady is trying to get a toilet back to the states. I'm sure shipping it would be the better solution, but they really should just be selling these in America. On the recycling front; they have bins everywhere designated for each type of recyclable, I think America could learn a lot from this and if it was readily accessible, we would be way more apt to comply. 

Well, I can officially say that not only did I cross an item off my bucket list by going out of the country, I one upped myself when my brother made me climb a mountain. I really didn't think I was going to make it to be honest. I thought I was effective when I go to the gym, but apparently I'm a workout slacker. 

We got a goodways up the mountain; a mountain that apparently 5th graders in the town are required to hike during their school year (not so great for my self esteem by the fact that 10 year olds can do something I was nearly incapable of doing) when I had to pull myself together. Partly because I  wanted to do it and partly because I was way too embarrassed to tell my brother and his friend that hiked with us to leave me behind and that I would live in the mountains with the monkeys (Im hate to say that I didn't see any monkeys). But by telling myself over and over 'you can do this!' 'live life' 'today is a gift' I made it up and down the mountain hours later. I felt like a million dollars and my legs were trembling the way marathon runners do at the end of a race (as pathetic as that is for me to admit).

Japan might be ahead of us in some areas, but America is ahead  when it comes to carbs. I went 10 days without eating bread. Unless there is a time I'm blanking on, which is a very real possibility because it has been a lot to take in for me.

From all my experiences here though I think the most valuable lesson I've learned being here is that we all aren't that different after all. Even with a huge ocean and thousands of miles separating us, these people are my neighbors just as much as those living in my neighborhood. They love their kids the way I love mine, they pay outrageous gas prices ($7+/gallon), and they are all just in a pursuit of happiness just like we are. I think we all can relate even if we communicate in different language and have different concepts of personal space. 

It's been fun Japan, until next time.

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