Tuesday, April 30, 2013

30 Things I'm Grateful for in April

30 Things I’m Grateful for in April

  1. Fun new gold shoes. Because Cinderella is proof that a pair of shoes can change a girl’s life.
  2. Mommy time – cooking club and night out at Jasper Winery with Des Moines Moms Group.
  3. A great time of food and fellowship with our small group.
  4. A husband who enjoys working on our budget and making sure we meet our money goals every month.
  5. A weekend trip away!
  6. Our health. Stomach flu made its rounds through everyone in April. However, nothing is as bad as having a wee one in the hospital with a very rare disease. Please pray for baby Lincoln.
  7. It’s time for garage sales. I love a good bargain.
  8. Speaking of bargains, ½ price consignment sales on Sunday.
  9. New babies being born to several friends.
  10. Great movies from the library – Life of Pi, Zero Dark Thirty, Les Miserables, Argo.
  11. Lance turned 31!
  12. 2 weeks of solid daycare attendance. It’s such a relief to not worry about daycare during the day so I can focus on doing my job.
  13. Lunchtime. I get a solid 60 minutes of interrupted time to myself where I can go anywhere or do anything. Do you know how infrequent that was when I stayed at home with Lu? Infrequent – almost non-existent!
  14. I get to start dreaming about and planting my garden. And then fantasizing about warm, garden fresh tomatoes.
  15. Being really excited about blessing others with our 10% tithe off our tax return.
  16. The absence of warm winter coats.
  17. Sugar rush at Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt and Lucan being delighted in his frozen treat.
  18. Awesome leftovers for lunch.
  19. Reconnecting with old friends.
  20. New tires. It’s hard to feel grateful about something that is so darned expensive, but necessary. That being said, I’m grateful the protection that good tires provide me.
  21. Owning that I’m high-maintenance. I like my dish cloths to be dried a certain way, I like my hand towels to be folded into equal thirds and I want my child to come home with clean socks. I’m never going to be low-maintenance, so I might as well own it.
  22. The ability to blog at DesMoinesParent.com It’s been a fun adventure.
  23. Warm weather means more promotional work for me and the opportunity to earn a few extra dollars.
  24. Finding the onions growing in our garden that we forgot to pick last fall. :)
  25. My dad cleaning out our disaster of a garage while we were gone. Much loved and appreciated.
  26. Being sent paper towels to sample and get paid to sample. Like I said, it’s the small things!
  27. Spring temperatures. AMEN!
  28. A husband who will skewer, grill and glaze shrimp on the grill even though he detests shrimp.
  29. The fun of having a toddler and his arms wrapped around his your neck in a toddler hug.
  30. Sinner saved by grace.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Party Hosting: could you do this for me?

Have you ever come to the realization the week before hosting a party that you have a TON to do? Yep, I'm right there. Somehow I managed to snag a free catered party from Qdoba, which is great because I don't have to cook, but now I need to clean. And finish the 100 lingering house projects. Shoot. So dear readers, if everyone could stop on by and do one of these tasks for me, I'd be forever grateful.

1. Finish recovering my couch pillows.
2. Clean my bathroom. And the rest of the house.
3. Sew a new valance for the kitchen.
4. Paint my bathroom.
5. Install the new light fixture in the bathroom.
6. Spot clean the bedroom carpets, specifically the spot in our bedroom where Lucan squeezed out a tube of foundation. (I love my child. I love my child. I love my child.)
7. Find hiding spots for all of Lucan's crap.
8. Create and hang a gallery wall in the kitchen.
9. Order pictures for #8.
10. Hose off the deck
11. Plant flowers in the deck hangers.
12. Mop hardwoods. Again. Then make Lucan eat outside for the rest of the week.
13. Clean out the garage.
14. Hound people who haven't RSVPd yet. C'mon people. I know our generation has no concept of what RSVP means, but let's try here :)
15. Come up with Mexican Cinco de Mayo decorations. Or decide to throw in the towel and call it "good enough."

Like I said, feel free to stop on by, complete one of these tasks and cross it off my to-do list.

Good gracious. This little Mexican man combines everything that is wrong about Cinco de Mayo and stereotypes. 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

A Weekend Without Kids

Or in our case - "kid." But singular kid doesn't roll off the tongue quite as nicely :)

This past weekend Lance and I took our first weekend away from Lucan, who is almost two years old (side note: when did this happen?) We’ve been on money-saving mode and this was the first that we really felt like it would be okay to have this getaway.
Going away for a weekend was something that I was both looking forward to and something that I worried about too. Would Lucan be sad when he realized we were gone? Would my parents be able to keep up with our busy toddler? Would Lucan throw one of his notorious tantrums? Would Lucan refuse to eat? Would we miss Lucan like crazy? All of my concerns turned out to be silly. According to my parents, Lucan didn’t seem to mind one bit that we were gone and only got upset when my mom took his cell phone from him. (Lucan has one of my old cell phones that he loves playing with. He tried to take it  to bed with him for nap time.) He ate like a horse (my mom got him his first Happy Meal from McDonalds - the toy is sitting on the counter. I had no idea what it was) and tried to convince my mom that he needed two bananas for his bedtime snack (he normally doesn’t get ANYTHING for a bedtime snack!) Yes, my parents were tired by the end of the weekend, but overall my fears were unfounded. We missed our ferocious Lucan hugs, but Lance and I had a great weekend by ourselves.
I think that it’s easy to get lost in the role of being “mom” or “dad” and forget the couple you were before kids. A weekend getaway to the Twin Cities gave Lance and I the chance to reconnect and remind us why being “us” is so great. We didn’t do anything wild and crazy or go on some huge global adventure. We slept in late, drank coffee, didn’t worry about nap times or argue about whose turn it was to pick up Lucan’s mealtime mess. We talked in long, uninterrupted streams of conversation. All in all, it was a perfect, low-key, child-free weekend. And outlet shopping didn't hurt things either :)

Monday, April 8, 2013

March photo dump

We like to wear our yogurt on our face and eat our spoon separately.

Hello? I'd like to call China please. My parents are being mean and won't let me have another jelly bean. I'd like to return these parents please.

Oh, hey mom. Fancy meeting you here. I'm just calling for this other kid ... who has some jelly bean issues...
Double fisting is how we roll.

Lucan's favorite thing to do is buckle the clips on his seat.

And his seat becomes even more fun when it's on the ground.

Snow angels in yet another March snow storm. We didn't have snow boots for Lucan so I stuffed his shoes inside ziplock baggies. Where there is a will, there is a way. Please note that the smaller snow angel has tackled the bigger snow angel.

I think their snow angel technique has room for improvement.

Lucan went through a phase where every day he took off his clothes if I left him in his crib too long.

No one would ever accuse our house of being hot - especially not my parents who regularly complain about the temps in our house when they visit.

The nakedness also progressed into nap time.

Nothing like a little scrambled brains to get the noggin going!

Lucan has also taken to hiding in the pots and pans again. But because he's grown, now he has to take out pans to fit. Note the reflection of the popcorn maker in the oven door.

Besides being naked, Lucan also loves surfing the internet and playing on the computer.

He's shiftly looking about to see if anyone caught him bidding $200 on a new set of MegaBloks

Gotcha MegaBloks! Victory is mine!

Happily riding in his carseat with his beloved blankie. We own three of the precious blankies. Our next child will not get a light colored blanket to love. First time mom mistake.

Rolling around at Grandma K's house in the caterpillar tube. Crazy kiddo. 

Lance has "fixed" his beloved Chrysler LHS. "Fixed" in quotation marks because the car left us stranded on the other side of town when it was "fixed" the first time and then started pouring out antifreeze the second time it was "fixed" and took Lance an hour and a half to get home from downtown. When I say "fixed," I'm allowed to use quotation marks.  Lance likes to joke that the LHS, peeling paint and all 230,000 miles, will be Lu's first car. Oh Lucan, I pray we can do better for you that that!

Lucan was being a sweetheart and sat on his Grandpa K's lap for almost a half an hour while his Grandpa got some "beauty sleep" post-lunch.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Blogging on the side ...Des Moines Parent

I have another blog home! You can find me occasionally blogging at the Des Moines Parent site - here is an article I wrote today about things I'm excited to do in April. The graphic below is just a hint about the things on my calendar. Hint: if you didn't already think I'm a dork, this will confirm it :)

  April To Do

Monday, April 1, 2013

A Day in the Life of a Working Momma

6:20 AM - alarm goes off. Gads. I just want 10 more minutes. Snooze button.

6:30 AM - drag my butt out of bed. Grumble a grumpy good morning to Lance. Get ready for work and see if the clothes I picked out the night before are still appealing. Even if they aren't, I convince myself it's fine. Unless they're really not fine. Then I proceed to stand in front of my closet and work out what I should wear. Which at 6:30 AM, is as bad as me trying to do long division in my head.

6:55 AM - start waking up Lucan and mumble a pray of thanks when he doesn't throw a fit about being taken out of his soft, warm pajamas.

7:00 AM - wrestle Lucan to the ground and try and force his antibiotics down. Bribe with dove chocolate. Mission accomplished.

7:10 AM - wave goodbye to Lance and Lucan off and pray that Lucan doesn't cry during drop-off this morning. Send up a prayer of thanksgiving that it's Tues and Lance has drop-off today and not me.
Throw random diced vegetables, chicken and spices into the crockpot for supper. Cross my fingers and hope that it turns out.

7:22 AM - BOLT out of the house for work. Tell my car not to tell Lance that I didn't warm her up this morning. It's a good thing it takes me less than 10 minutes to get to work, but even so, I'm not going to be at my desk by 7:30.

7:32 AM - sneak into my cube, but no one really cares the exact time I roll into work. These feelings of guilt are leftover from my last lovely boss. Check my email and see what's on the docket for the day.
8:00 AM - run down three flights of stairs to toast my toast and make myself a bohemith mug of coffee. Now I'm a human being.

8:15 AM - settle into going about my day.

10:39 AM - momentarily panic when I hear my phone vibrating with a text and pray it's not daycare sending Lucan home. Start breathing again when I realize it's a text from Culvers with some asinine promotion. Contemplate unsubscribing from their texts but remember how much I love their custard. Stupid Culvers.

Noon - lunch. FINALLY. Run a couple of "errands"/wander aimlessly through Target and keep telling myself that I'm going to start working out again over lunch. Really soon.

1:10 PM - say a short prayer that Lucan takes a good nap at daycare. Because their is nothing like waiting all day to play with your child only to find him exhausted and crabby from not napping at daycare. 

2:32 PM - afternoon slump. Man, I'm really dragging ... maybe I need a Diet Cherry Coke...

4:35 PM- leisurely walk to the parking lot to my car and inhale deeply.

4:45 PM - arrive home and do a few chores before I run to daycare to pick-up Lu.

5:10 PM - pick-up Lu and ask how his day went. One-hour nap. AGAIN. Make the realization that tonight will be a doozie.

5:30 PM - Lucan is crazy whiny. Give him a hug and a banana to temporarily pacify him. Banana seems to do the trick, not mommy hugs. 

5:38 PM - Lance walks in and I breathe a sigh of relief. Someone else can try and reason with our crazy monkey of a toddler. 

6:00 PM - We all sit down for supper. Lucan refuses to eat everything except the carrots out of the soup. Everything else he throws on the floor. Whatever. Force Lucan to take some more amoxacillin. Give him more chocolate. Make a mental note to buy more Dove Promises because Lu has just finished my stash.

7:40 PM - BEDTIME for hysterical monkey man.

8:00 PM - watch a little TV and check menu plan for tomorrow to see if there's anything I can prep tonight. Mushroom, beef and noodles. A leftover conglomerate: beef from leftover french dip sandwiches and mushrooms from smothered grilled chicken. Nothing that I can really prep tonight.

10:00 PM - shower, pick out clothes and set out lunch for myself. Read my Bible and Reading Lolita in Tehran in bed. Get in massive trouble when I spill a huge glass of water in the bed causing us to change sheets at 11:10 pm.Oppsie.

11:15 PM - lights off, lots of grumbling about getting me a sippy cup for my bedside water.

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