Thursday, August 30, 2012

Quality time

Living far away from family has not been easy.
Instead of getting to see my mom and dad every few weeks or sometimes days, it's every few months....that's hard.

However, there is something to be said for getting to have so much QUALITY time when they are here.  We are not rushing to a restaurant to grab a quick bite and have broken conversation, instead we get to spend days and nights together doing every day stuff....

and you get moments like these....

I know those last two pictures look very similar, but I love the expression of my dad in the last one because I know him....and that's joy on his face.

And having them here puts joy on her face.

I love watching my kids continue to bond and grow their relationship with their grandparents.
So much that I called up my mom on Skype yesterday just so she could have a heart to heart with her granddaughter.
I saw Merri Lebo bring the "principal" in her back and much appreciative....but that's another post.

It was a quick visit, less than 72 hours....but I'm already looking forward to some good time to be spent together over Christmas.

Truth be told, I think they were glad to be getting back to the air conditioning in Houston.
 August in San Diego without air may just be comparable to summer heat in Houston.....that, or I've just become extremely weak.


Monday, August 20, 2012

The Monday Muse

Andy went to Dallas for a quick "boys will be boys" weekend, and I stayed home with the kiddos.
I had been looking forward to this weekend for a while.....for one, I knew that Andy needed time away just like the rest of us (thank you for Vegas), but two, sometimes it's just kind of nice to run the ship by yourself once in a while, right?

The ship sank.

Holy cow.  I had one of the worst weekends in my history of being a parent.
I stopped counting the number of parenting fouls on Friday, and just held my breath until Sunday at 5pm when Andy walked in the door and I promptly walked out (I did have a photo session to get to, but truth be told, I probably would have walked out anyways).

Please tell me I am not the only one that has those out of body experiences of bad parenting.
Did I just yell at my two year old to "SHUT UP"??!!  Um, yes.
Did I spank my four year old a little two hard just because for the love of God, she did not listen to me for the umpteenth time???

Did I shed tears over my failure as a parent and have a few "woe as me" moments....this is my only job, why do I suck so bad at it?????

I most certainly did.

Thank goodness today was a new day.
It's amazing what two hours away will do for my frame of mind.
I got home from my photo session last night and WANTED to hug my kids again.
Today I didn't totally suck as a parent.

In the midst of a trying week, there were a few funny moments that made me laugh, so we will focus on that.

1.  On the way to swim lessons on Thursday, as we approached, I heard Addison say,
"Look Graham!  The gas station!  That's the gas station daddy works at!!".
At least the girl may be loyal to Shell.

2. On Saturday night, after my most un-stellar day at parenting, I crashed on the couch and finally caught up on my DVR of  Glee...Graduation, from MAY.
And I bawled through the last 20 minutes of it.
Like the ugly, can't breathe, cry.
I wasn't even that attached to Glee. 
Was I upset that I never chased my dreams on Broadway as Finn pushed Rachel to do?
Those that have heard me sing know better, but I still can't figure out what got to me so bad.
I did make Addison lip sync the Glee version of "Defying Gravity" with me today....if you can't have Broadway, you can have a moment with your four year old.

3. I had a photo session last weekend of a family visiting from Texas with 6 adults and 6 kids five and under.  And I had an assistant, thanks to my parents who were in town for a few days, I employed my husband who works camera bag for free.
And poses for light shots.

and was such a good sport, and took his job very seriously.
Thank you babe for always making me smile when the going gets tough.
Love you.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Mommy's time out

Almost two weeks ago (jeez, I'm behind), two sweet friends of mine who are also moms in desperate need of a time out....
took a five hour road trip to VEGAS.

I have a confession.
Before this trip, I had never been to Vegas.
Finally took that slightly embarrassing note off my traveling resume.

The idea of having two days of doing nothing but sitting by the pool, catching up on trash magazines, and maybe even hitting up THE strip was all I needed to say yes to pulling the trigger on a Living Social deal we found months ago.

Months in the making, this weekend could not have come at a better time.
Remember, we had just potty trained Graham the week before.
"Good luck babe, I'm sure he'll do great!"....said the girl packing her bags for a fun filled weekend away.
I didn't have to remind anyone to tell me they had to go potty all weekend.

We may have overpacked a bit.
And being the prepared girls like we are, we had plenty of water.....just in case.
My friend, Karen, has a survival pin board on Pinterest....just so you know what kind of people we're dealing with here.  =)  
And just being honest, she may have convinced me to start one as well.....mental note to actually start completing some of those things on the board, since Pinterest most likely will not be accessible in the case of a true disaster.
I digress, here are Joy & Karen as we waited to check in

This would be the pool that we spent an entire lovely day at.

 Caught up on all the drama of TomKat, etc.....

And then we found our way onto the Vegas Strip where I stupidly did no go with my gut on Black 17.
Lesson NOT ignore THAT feeling.

Instead we explored a bit, and found our way to 

We then spent our last day in our hotel room, napping and reading.....because we COULD.
And that 5 hour road trip there turned into an 8 hour road trip home....where we found
all three dads with kids in tow hanging out at Karen's house at 10:30pm.

Nicely played Dads, nicely played.

Great trip girls, let's do it again SOON!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Family Pics

For the first time in over two years, I got my husband to agree to get family pictures taken.
Not only did we get them taken, but we were able to have someone take them whose photography I admire so much.
Stacy has been a huge help to me as I get my own little photography business up and running, and I was thrilled to be on the other end of the camera, if only so my kids will actually have some pictures with me in them.  =)

The session was one that I had been looking forward to for so long.  
When the time came, my four year old decided to flaunt her vivacious, CHALLENGING personality the ENTIRE time.  I may have shed a few tears.
However, Stacy kept reminding me to relax and just embrace it or at least FAKE it, and I went with number 2.
Thank you so much Stacy, we are absolutely thrilled with them!
Here are a "few".


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Let's kick it up a notch

I remembered yesterday at about 3pm that Addison was supposed to start soccer today.
It was about 20 minutes after that when we loaded up the car and went off to search for some closed toed shoes.  Her feet are growing so fast and apparently flip flops weren't going to cut it.

I'm going to go ahead and admit that my New Year's resolution to be on time this year has pretty much been a fail.
I was the mom rushing the kids out the door, barely dressed, without sunscreen, and didn't even bring a water bottle.
Luckily, I saw my friend, Joy, at the park nearby and she kindly let me borrow her water bottle that she responsibly had on hand so I didn't get worst parent of the year award when the kids broke for water break.

 Next week they will be kicking it up a notch, and I'll actually have to go find her some shin guards and legit soccer "stuff".  And then I might even go ahead and throw some sunscreen, water bottle, and snack in as well.

...and a cool rag to fight off the 74 degree heat.

No felt hot.....the kids and I were both sweating and whining a bit.

  I am totally screwed whenever we move back to Texas.