Monday, January 15, 2018

Weekend Recap

It seems like most of the country has off work today.  Not I.  But I can’t complain – it snowed all night and it’s still falling.  We haven’t had all that much accumulation – probably about 3 inches, but it was enough to make roads slick.  I asked my boss if he minded if I worked from home today given the weather.  Being the wonderful boss that he is, he didn’t mind at all.  So currently sitting under a blanket with laptop in front of me and a sleepy dog at my feet.

It was a rare weekend in that we didn’t have anything planned.  A good thing because S was awful on Saturday.  I was sure he was coming down with some bug.  His cheeks were rosy and he had meltdown after meltdown any time he didn’t get his way.  We had planned to go out for lunch and then complete our weekly grocery shopping.  But after crying the majority of the way to the restaurant, I just didn’t want to deal with a cranky toddler while eating.  We decided to go through the drive thru and head home.  At this time, W was also upset because I refused to go to McDonalds.  Why do kids love that place so much?!?  Two cranky boys in a car is no bueno.  After lunch, I planned to go to the grocery store alone.  But, of course, both kids wanted to join me.  They were actually really good in the grocery store.  It was the only point in the day I remember in which S was not throwing a fit.  A and I could not wait for the kids to go to bed!

Sunday, S was totally fine.  It was as if Saturday never happened.  Church went well.  We had plans to visit our usual Starbucks.  When we got there, it was packed.  Hardly any spaces to park and a long line to order.  Since my mom couldn’t join us anyway, I suggested we head to my favorite breakfast spot – Egg Harbor.  Naturally, both boys weren’t keen on the idea.  But A and I decided to be mean and take the boys anyway. ;)  I’m not really a breakfast person, but the food here is so good.  The boys eventually stopped pouting and we had a delicious breakfast.  After that, A and I decided we needed more time out of the house so we headed to the nearby Wildlife Discovery Center.  We’d never been here before and I’m not sure what took us so long, but I loved it!  It’s nearby and FREE so win, win!  We got to see snakes, lizards, opossum, turtles, a caiman, toads, and other creatures.  The boys loved the old building and had so much fun walking to the different rooms and visiting animals.  We even got to give a Rhinoceros Iguana named Flora a back scratch.  We headed outside to see the owls and bobcat and tried to figure out what type of owls we were seeing (a great horned owl and a barred owl – we think).  The boys wanted to stay out and run along the trail, but it was 16 degrees and windy and I couldn’t handle being out anymore.  Such a fun place and we’ll definitely return!  The rest of the day was spent on the treadmill, cleaning up a bit, and making a yummy dinner (chicken and linguini with lemon cream sauce).  A and I watched This is Us and called it a night.  I should also mention that S has been eating a TON – 5 pancakes and sausage this morning (HOLY MOLY) so maybe he’s going through a growth spurt and was hangry most of Saturday… who knows?








And in other news…

W now knows how to use the remote and keeps turning on Peppa Pig.  It’s my own version of hell.  Save me!
When S isn’t having a meltdown, he’s as sweet as can be.  He’ll say, “I like you, mommy” and “I love you so much”.  Melt my heart.
I’m so over our cold temperatures.  I know winter is cold, but it doesn’t need to be 5 degrees every day.
I really have the urge to travel.  I traveled to more places last year than ever before and now that it’s been awhile since we went anywhere, I really want to go.  A and I pondered a spring break trip, but the responsible thing to do seems to be to pay off  bills and save up for a trip later on.  Still… I’d really love to go!  I may have even looked up Caribbean cruises (not happening, but a girl can dream ;)).


Friday, January 12, 2018

Stitch Fix Friday

I am way late in sharing my most recent Stitch Fix.  It arrived before the holidays and it took me a long time to take pictures.  I also ended up exchanging one of the items for a different size and had to wait for that to arrive (not that it took very long).  Without further ado….


I loved this Havana Front Buckle Pullover sweater and then when I viewed the photos A took, I felt like the way I styled it didn’t do the sweater any justice.  It looks a bit frumpy in the photo, but in reality, it’s so cute and cozy.  I love anything gray and the buckle closure is such a fun detail.  I wore this a couple weeks later with a black top underneath and different shoes and liked the outfit better.  Regardless of the way I styled, this sweater was a great addition to my closet.  KEEP




Next up, the Rossie Embroidered Sleeve Knit Sweatshirt.  I had this pinned and was excited to receive it.  My only complaint is that it didn’t arrive sooner. J  I love this under my green vest and I think it would have been perfect for the fall months.  Truth be told, I’m struggling with how to style it for winter months.  It’s a bit shorter than tops I typically wear so I do prefer to wear it under a vest, but will have to experiment with other looks.  Embroidery seems to be super trendy lately and I liked that this incorporated the trend without being overly embroidered.  KEEP




Next up, this cozy Ellah Textured Front Cowl Neck purple sweater.  I love it with leggings, skinny jeans, or under a vest.  It’s such a versatile sweater and great for work or being home with the boys.  I had ordered a sweater from Loft in almost the exact same shade and it arrived with a hole so I was happy to keep this and return the other sweater.  I love purple and so does W.  This was a definite keeper.  KEEP




Let’s call this photo, “Hey, I just realized I’m wearing my new Stitch Fix Elizabeth Super Skinny Jeans – can you take a photo??” J  Let’s talk about these jeans for a minute.  They have an elastic waist!!  As in, no zipper, no button.  And I love that about them!!  These are black, but they’re sort of a blue-black, which I also love.  They’re incredibly versatile.  They do require an extra tug to pull on because of the elastic, but they fit like a glove.  Team elastic all the way!!  KEEP



Finally, the Tonie Lace Inset Pullover sweater.  When I initially tried this on, it was more on the fitted side.  It wasn’t tight by any means, but I thought I’d feel more comfortable if I sized up.  Then when I looked at the photos, I thought the smaller sweater probably would have been more flattering.  Oh well.  I like it either way (and yes, I need to iron it).  I initially thought this was a blush color, but it’s more of a cream, which I like MUCH better.  I love the feminine lace detail and there’s even a zipper on the side.  I actually wore this to my company holiday party and felt put together, but not too dressy.  KEEP





I loved this fix!!  It was another 5/5.  Unfortunately, I don’t think the photos demonstrate how great these pieces really are.  Special thanks to Addie for posing with me, as usual. :)

Monday, January 8, 2018

Weekend Recap

I don’t really have anything to recap since it was a pretty uneventful weekend.  I love these types of weekends and since everyone returns to school today, it was nice to be able to “relax” and ease into the work week.

While the boys and A were off from school, they came to visit me at work on Thursday.  My coworkers enjoy seeing them (as far as I can tell!) and the boys didn’t want to leave.  I felt like a jerk trying to hurry them along, but I really had to get back to work.  Anyway, it’s always great to get a visit from my favorite guys. 

On Friday, A took the boys to an indoor bounce house place that looked so fun – he’s such a great dad!!  I met them for pizza afterwards.  S was so exhausted, he fell asleep around 6:00 and slept for the next 12+ hours.

The rest of the weekend consisted of errands and our usual Sunday routine.  The boys got along really well all weekend.  S told me that W was his friend.  Melt my heart.  W tried to potty train S and offered him Oreo cookies and Hershey Kisses as rewards.  I HATE potty training so if W is volunteering, I’m all for it. ;)  And both boys played really well together the majority of the weekend.



In other news, I’m doing great on the treadmill!  I had no real goals or expectations when we brought it to the house.  I mainly just wanted the option to walk a couple times a week while A did his vest.  Well, we’ve had the treadmill for eight days and I’ve walked/jogged seven of those days.  I feel so accomplished when I’m done and it seems to have helped quite a bit with my anxiety (or maybe I just feel a lot better because I had a break from work).  Anyway, I’m proud of myself.  I don’t really expect to keep up this pace, but I do hope to continue using the treadmill every week.  A has been using it too and he’s doing awesome!!  Go us!!




And in completely random news, I wore my hair differently yesterday and today (straight and partly back) and people keep commenting on it… so I think I need to change up my hair game every so often.  Ha!


Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Time Off

The remainder of our days off were spent sleeping in (until 6:30am) and playing with new toys.  Our temperatures remained in the single digits so we typically only ventured out when we had to (or when the boys got stir crazy).  It was so nice not being confined to a schedule. 

Highlights of my time off included taking the boys to the indoor play place at the mall to burn off some energy.  Aside from losing my beloved hat in the mall, it turned out to be a fun day, complete with a Starbucks hot cocoa stop (A is now addicted to hot cocoa).





We got to enjoy lunch with our closest friends and their kiddos.  Believe it or not, all five kiddos, age five and younger were nearly perfect.  S did drop his drink and decided to lay on me while I was eating, but all in all, the kids were great and the food was yummy.

I cashed in one of my gift certificates (that I realized I had received last Valentine’s Day - I’m not always so good at using gift cards) and enjoyed a relaxing pedicure.

We sadly took down our Christmas tree because it was losing way too many needles and no longer taking in water, but it did give us some much needed space for ALL the toys!




We somehow convinced my mom to watch the boys for a couple hours while A and I watched a movie and ate sub sandwiches.  We watched Gone Baby Gone – I didn’t love it, but it was nice to be able to spend time with just A.

A and I somehow managed to move the world’s heaviest treadmill from my mom’s house to ours.  This requires a little back story.  I mentioned in a previous post that I felt a little lost lately.  Work hasn’t been great and the miscarriage left me trying to figure out how to let go of a dream and move on with life.  I haven’t been happy, I haven’t felt like myself, and I’ve eaten more Christmas cookies than anyone should.  I mentioned to A that I really wanted a treadmill and thought I could walk while he did his vest in the evenings.  Even though we wouldn’t be doing the same thing, we’d at least be together.  I had a treadmill at my mom’s house that has sat idle for the past 10 years.  I didn’t even know if it worked.  I wasn’t sure if I should just buy a new one or try to hire movers to get the old treadmill from her house to mine.  Since treadmills apparently cost hundreds of dollars (I had no idea they were that pricey), movers seemed like the best option.  Fast forward a bit:  I asked A to take a look at the treadmill and I wanted to see if it still worked.  It did and A said he thought we could move it ourselves.  I said no way.  He wanted to try.  You guys, that was the heaviest thing I’ve ever moved and I was sore for days, but we did it!  We got it up my mom’s stairs and into our basement.  I’m 3 for 3 days in terms of exercising and sometimes I even get crazy and jog a bit.  I feel so much better when I finish.  It isn’t much, but it’s a start to a heathier me.  And I was so proud of A and I for moving that enormous thing!!

It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows – the boys had their moments where they were tired of being stuck inside and tired of one another.  I had to call into a couple work meetings (despite being on vacation – boo).  But I also had coworkers sending me instant messages telling me to stop working and reiterating that I was on vacation, which I appreciated.  It was a reminder that I have really great coworkers who have become good friends even if my job is far from spectacular. 


For the most part, it was a blissful break from work and I’ll miss being with the boys daily.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Christmas 2017

All good things must come to an end and here I am back at work.  We had a wonderful Christmas and I can’t believe December is already over and we’re in to 2018.  I wanted to do a quick (or maybe not so quick) recap so that I’ll be able to look back and remember Christmas 2017.

Typically, Christmas Eve is spent with my dad’s side of the family.  My dad passed away 15 years ago and I really enjoy getting together with my aunts, uncles, and cousins on his side of the family.  I’ve always been close to all of them and it’s a great way to remember my dad.  I’ll try to keep the drama brief, but this year was a bit different.  I noticed that my cousin (who happened to be my matron of honor – which is hilarious now that she’s been engaged 3 times, married twice and unbeknownst to me, was pregnant with her new boyfriend’s child at my wedding) unfriended me on Facebook.  I had no idea why and thought it was ridiculous.  A month or so after unfriending me (and A), she sent me a rude FB message from her mom’s account even though she had my phone number.  It basically said that she was hosting Christmas Eve and I should at least have the courtesy to respond to her message and let her know if I’d attend.  I was still confused, but didn’t want to deal with any drama, especially on Christmas Eve, so I told her I had other plans and left it at that.  She went on to ask me why I thought I was better than everyone else in our family, told me she unfriended me for my political posts (which I hardly ever post), told me I ignored her two Christmases ago and ignored her again at a wedding, and that I didn’t like her FB posts or pictures enough.  It was laughable, immature, and absurd.  And after all that, she asked why I didn’t want to spend Christmas with her.  Haha!  After the FB messages, she then started texting me, telling me she was sorry, that we should talk, and that we needed to keep our family together.  It was bizarre and I didn’t want my boys anywhere near that craziness so I again declined the invitation.  I saw one of my aunts just a few days before Christmas and while I did miss seeing other cousins, aunts, and uncles, I don’t regret my decision to avoid the drama. 

SO all that to say, we decided to spend Christmas Eve at my mom’s house.  Prior to heading there, we went to mass and were asked if we’d like to bring up the gifts.  I felt really honored to be asked, but was a little worried we’d drop communion or the boys wouldn’t want to walk with us.  Luckily, all went perfectly and it was a great way to start the day.  

The boys and my mom at church on Christmas Eve.  I love their little outfits. :)

Christmas Eve at my mom’s house was wonderful.  We indulged in comfort food – fried chicken, mashed potatoes, mac and cheese.  The boys opened their gifts from my mom and received their Power Wheels Jeep!  I think they were really surprised!  W is a terrible driver (doesn’t get it from me! ;)), but we had fun watching him try to drive S around in the snow.  Unfortunately, our temperatures have been in the single digits and it’s too cold to go outside, but I know they’ll have fun whenever they get to drive it again.  It ended up being a relatively low key Christmas Eve, the boys got to bed early enough, A and I played Santa that night (the best!!), and I really enjoyed the day!


I LOVE that we had a white Christmas!!  We got just enough snow to cover the ground.


I've taken a Christmas Eve pj picture every year and I love looking back and seeing how the boys have grown.

Christmas day, the boys woke to find more gifts under the tree and big wheels from Santa.  Not surprisingly, no one wanted to go to church (yes, as Catholics, Christmas Eve mass was separate from Christmas day mass and we went two days in a row!  How’s that for commitment?!? J).  Somehow, we convinced the boys to get dressed and made it to church on time (miracles happen!).  Once we got home, the boys checked out their stockings and opened one gift from Santa.  Soon enough, it was time to head to A’s parents’ (also known as Nani and Papa) house.  We had a delicious lunch (or was it dinner?) of beef tenderloin (sooo good!!) and several sides and the boys had a blast running around with their cousins.  It was a little chaotic, but I remember growing up with several cousins and I LOVED holidays with them so it makes my heart happy to see the boys playing with their cousins.  There were too many presents and we left with full hearts and full bellies.






But we weren’t done yet.  The day after Christmas, my mom and brother came over for brunch.  We’ve done this three years in a row now and I so look forward to it.  We stay in our pjs or comfy clothes.  I make cinnamon rolls and a breakfast casserole while A makes pancakes, bacon, and sausage.  We eat a ton and then we all open gifts to one another while the boys open their remaining presents from Santa.  Wrapping paper, ribbon, and toy boxes are everywhere.  I usually ask for a mix of practical items (my favorite shampoo, undies) and splurge items that I can’t justify buying for myself (a pricey cardigan, more Lipsense) and I got a good mix of both.  I even received jewelry from my mom and A!  All in all, it was a truly great Christmas.  I love that we draw it out for 3 days because it really does seem like a magical time and I’m always so sad when it’s over.  Being a parent at Christmastime is such a blessing that I’ll never take for granted.







Wishing you all a very Happy New Year!!

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Lately

Merry Christmas to all (who celebrate)!

I've been off work since Wednesday and it's been wonderful.  Slow mornings, errands, and lots of gift wrapping have filled our days.




I got to spend W's birthday with him.  It was a crazy busy day, but I so enjoyed it.  After dropping W off at school, S and I headed to the mall to pick up my ring, which had to be repaired.  From there, we met up with my mom and my aunt for coffee.  My aunt and uncle recently visited Italy and I loved hearing about their trip.  Italy is definitely on my bucket list of places to visit.  After that, we picked W up from school and he chose Olive Garden for lunch.  From there, we picked up A and headed to the local Children's Museum.  The boys had an absolute blast!  When I tucked W in for the night, he told me "this was the funnest day!"  Mission accomplished. :)  His birthday is always bittersweet for me, but I'm so happy we all had a great day!








Other than that, I've been living off of Christmas cookies.  I should be ashamed of the amount I've eaten, but tis the season and they're so yummy.  On a related note, I've decided that 2018 will be about getting myself back.  I want to feel good about myself.  I'd like to start exercising and I need a job change.  That may mean finding a new job or finding a way to change my current responsibilities, but somehow I need a change.  I did apply for another position within the company.  I don't think I have any chance of getting the job, but it felt so good to apply.  It gave me hope and served as a reminder that I won't be in my current situation forever.

So that's life lately.  I'm really looking forward to Christmas and I think the boys are going to be so excited with their gifts.  I always tell myself I won't go overboard and somehow I always do.  My credit card is not happy with me (another 2018 goal...).

Happy holidays!!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

W at Five

W turns 5 tomorrow.

First of all, I can’t even believe I’m writing about W at 5.  I sound like a broken record, but 5 just seems SO old to me.  No longer a baby or a toddler, he’s a school aged boy.  It breaks my heart a little.

W still amazes us with his memory and the minute details he can recall.  A and I often wonder if he has a photographic memory.  He’ll bring up a broken light in a parking lot we encountered 9 months ago or casually mention that Uncle Brian brought over his race-car bed when he was 2 and we had to take Addie for a walk so she wasn’t in the way.  He’ll notice when a neighbor gets a new mailbox or that a specific house places their garbage cans on either side of the driveway instead of adjacent to each other.  He asked me why he had two hospital bracelets when he was a newborn and A and I joked that he probably remembered being in the hospital.


 W loves to build and create neighborhoods.  He often plays with blocks at school.  He can see a picture of a magna-tile creation and recreate it.  He’s very good at understanding spatial arrangement and I still think he’ll be an engineer someday. 


 He seems to have an amazing ability for math, but can’t really explain how he came up with an answer.  For instance, we mentioned that the date was Friday, December 8.  He replied, “then next Friday is the 15th”.  When we asked how he knew that, he just said he knew.  My mom’s cousin sent us coasters and he told my mom that she could have five of them.  Knowing that there were 10 altogether, I asked why grandma got five.  He replied, “I thought she’d get half.”  And then there are other times in which I’ll ask a simple problem (5+2) and he’ll spout off an incorrect answer without thinking.  I’m not sure if he’s bored with my question and didn’t take the time to think it through.  It’s a bit strange, but I have a feeling that he’ll excel at math one day and I’m excited for him to learn more in kindergarten.



He seems to prefer to talk to adults and can be very shy around other kids.  He has a silly side, but seems more serious than other kids and is definitely sensitive.  He seems to have a large vocabulary and will use words such: ridiculous, evidently, confused, assume, etc…



W is still garbage truck obsessed and greets our recycle man and garbage man every Friday with treats (I’m not sure who looks forward to it more – they’re basically BFFs).  His garbage trucks and mini garbage cans are his favorite toys by far.  He’s also discovered how to find garbage truck videos on You Tube and watches them daily.



Along with garbage trucks, W also loves owls.  He has a collection of owls and all have names.  He often makes up stories about them and his beloved Mommy Owl is usually the lead character.  He also has quite a few other owl items including: shirts, blankets, pajamas, books, and ornaments.



He seems to enjoy dressing up and looking “spiffy” and gets confused when I set out “comfy clothes” to wear.  I absolutely love this about him and never tire of choosing outfits. 



He told me that when he grows up, he wants kids.  “I’ll have 4 kids - 2 boys and 2 girls.  And I guess I have to find a woman.  Maybe you can be the mommy because Grandma will be too old.”  I didn’t have the heart to tell him it doesn’t really work that way, but I promised I’d watch his 4 children. J



He is still a picky eater, but has been more willing to try new foods.  Favorite foods are pizza, homemade mac and cheese (which he basically makes himself), ramen, and Starbucks bagels.


I’m so proud of him and so very grateful to be his mom.