Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Will's 1st Birthday!

Up late again tonight, so I figured I'd post again :-) Alyson has been waking up around this time for the past few nights and crying for me, for no apparent reason. Not sure what's going on there. For the past week and a half or so, her bedtime routine has been dragging out longer and longer. We used to listen to some music, read a book, then I'd say goodnight and that would be that. I'd close the door and she'd fall right to sleep. Then one day she wanted her light left on. Then she wanted her door left open. Now she wants me to lay with her until she falls asleep. If I get up before she's fallen asleep, she'll get out of bed and want to follow me downstairs. I swear it takes almost an hour to get her to sleep each night when it used to take 20, if that.

And NOW-- she'll wake up crying and yelling for me. Lastnight she woke up 3 different times. The first time wasa around 1am... I went and layed down in her bed and ended up falling asleep up there until 4am-ish. Being that my bed is MUCH more comfy than hers, I came back downstairs. Not even a half hour later, she must have woken up and noticed I was gone. I hear screaming and crying. I got to the steps and there she was, sitting at the top of the steps saying, "Mommy... you were in my room... you were gone." Ugh... so back upstairs I went and stayed there until she woke me up for good this morning by nudging me and saying, "Mommy, wake up-- I want cartoons on!" lol

So far so good tonight... (fingers crossed)... I just don't want this to become a regular thing! I like my own bed. No-- make that, I LOVE my own bed. Hopefully this is just a little phase she's going through.

Anyway... onto the weekend.

Sunday was our baby boy William's 1st Birthday. I can not believe Will is ONE already!! This year has FLOWN!! We plan on doing a larger family/friends birthday party for both kids in June once we get settled in the new house, but still wanted to do something for him on his actual birthday. We went to church, out to breakfast, then went party supply shopping. We had a small little party for him at our house around 5:30pm. We just invited our parents and two of our close friends and their 3 little kids. Russ had ordered some pasta and meatballs from a local Italian restaurant, and we had cake and ice cream. Will LOVED his cake!! It was white cake with strawberry filling and whipped icing. The boy ATE IT UP! There was some green icing on the outer edge of the cake, so his face and hands were all green! He was still slightly tinted green through the evening! It was hilarious!!

Now onto Monday... 4 more days to go until MOVING DAY! It still seems surreal that this won't be our house anymore. We've been here for 7 years and have made SO many memories here. I get a little choked up thinking about it because really-- this was the house we lived in when it was just the two of us, then the two of us and dogs, then kids entered the picture. The other night I was putting Aly to bed and while waiting for her to fall asleep I was looking around her room thinking back to when I was pregnant and found out I was having a girl. I was SO excited to decorate her bedroom. I painted and decorated the whole thing myself and was so pleased with how everything turned out. Same thing with Will's room. I only hope their bedrooms at the new house turn out just as great! We haven't done anything with their rooms yet... they need wallpaper removed and walls painted, but other than that they are ready to move into. I figure Rome wasn't built in a day, so we have to prioritize our home updates right now.

But yeah... SO many memories here. I'll miss this house in many ways, but then there are things about it (neighborhood-wise, mostly) I won't miss. I won't miss people driving past our house like the road is a highway. I won't miss the police cars having to go to the apartment complex down the street because the residents are doing drugs or being disorderly. I really do think the neighborhood is the main reason we wanted to move. It's just not very kid friendly, and as the kids are growing up, that's a priority for me. I want a safe neighborhood where I can take the kids or the dogs for a walk and not feel like we're gonna get run over by a motorcyclist or car going 50 mph down what SHOULD BE a 20 mph road.

I know this new house will bring so many more memories though. It'll give us the added space we need, because with 2 kids and 3 dogs, this house feels like the walls are closing in sometimes!! I'm just looking forward to painting and decorating the rest of the house... I absolutely love that kinda stuff. Can't wait to figure out where all our things can go... though I'm sure once we're halfway through unpacking I won't be so excited.

*sigh* This is just bittersweet. I know it'll really hit me when we get our final things out of the house and close the door for the last time.

Well, I should head to bed now. Here are a few pics of Will's party (the rest are on FB). Nighty Night!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Picture time!

I woke up this morning to find something it feels like we haven't seen for quite awhile...


This weather has been crazy... it's really depressing to wake up every morning to clouds and/or dreary rainy weather. Finally, some sunshine!! Puts me in a much better mood. But one weird thing it makes me want to do is clean...LOL! I have no idea why. Maybe because I can open the windows up and get the fresh air in the house, so I want the house to be nice and clean. I dunno. I just know I have to take advantage of this burst of housecleaning motivation while it lasts. But I have to put the important things first-- like blogging.;-)

Well, yesterday my mom and I took the kiddos to Sears for their birthday pics. Alyson will be 4 on June 21st and Will is going to be 1 year old TOMORROW!!! I still can't believe a whole year has gone by already.

AND-- of course--- a few nights ago Will was playing near a big bin of toys we have in the living room, when all the sudden he started crying really loudly. I scooped him up and held him on my lap for a bit until he stopped crying, then he turned around and looked at me and I saw a nickle-sized knot on his right cheek. Instant bruise. He either fell onto one of his toys, or hit his cheek off the end of the toy bin. Poor little guy. Needless to say, he got his very first face bruise two. days. before. pictures. I couldn't cancel the pictures because we are moving next week, and I knew if I didn't do it now, they wouldn't get done in time for their birthdays. So, we went for pictures yesterday, bruised face and all. And of course they don't do touch-ups at Sears for some crazy reason. You'd think they would. The pics turned out really cute, but you can still see the bruise in the pics. Guess it will give us something to talk about when he's older...

Anyway, Will totally did not want ANYTHING to do with pictures at first. But I guess you can't expect to plop a one year-old with stranger anxiety down on a backdrop and expect him to instantly be a smiley camera ham. I feel like I got a nice workout from chasing him around the room,picking him up and trying to make him somewhat pose for the girl. We gave him a little break and my mom fed him some of a bottle while my true camera ham got her pictures taken. Aly was LOVING getting her picture taken. She kept wanting to lay down on her belly. She was so cooperative and did exactly what the girl asked her to do-- what a breath of fresh air...lol. After Aly was done, Will was starting to come around a bit, so we got a few decent poses of him. No smiles though. My normally smiley boy just did not want to smile at all. :-( I told the girl, "As long as we get ONE pose of each of them separately and one together, I'm happy." Surprisingly, there were quite a few decent ones to pick from. And of course, I couldn't decide which ones I liked the best and ended up spending way too much money on way too many pics,which I told myself I WOULD NOT DO. Ugh... oh well. There will be lots of pics of the kiddos up around the new house :-)

I'm adding some pics from yesterday at the end of this post. For those of you I'm friends with on FB, I posted the whole set of pics on there if you want to check the rest out.

Well, I guess I should get started with cleaning. I have a whole long list of things I need to do during this next week before we move, like scrubbing floors, washing walls, cleaning windows and blinds... you know, all the fun stuff. Rather than put our home on the market right away, Russ is renting it out to one of his employees and his family. We move out Friday the 27th, and they need to be in by the 1st to avoid paying another month's rent where they are now, so we need to hurry in order to have the house all ready for them. It's gonna be go-go-go this next week, so I might not be posting much til after the move. We'll see :-)

Have a great weekend!

Here are a few pics from yesterday...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The "I couldn't think of anything to write, so here's a survey" post

I'm tired but not ready to go to bed yet... wanted to update my blog but do not have the brain power right now to think of something interesting to write about. SO--- it's survey time! Here's a little about me :-)

1. What time did you get up this morning?

2. Diamonds or pearls?

3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema?
HA! Wow that was a long time ago. I'm a "wait til it comes out on dvd" (or Comcast On-Demand in my case) kinda person. I would have to say it was one of the American Pie movies. Yeah-- long time ago.

4. What's your favorite TV show?
Right now I am absolutely loving "The Voice." I'm also into Dancing with the Stars mostly because of Hines Ward being on the show shaking his booty every week. Other favorites include Law and Order:SVU, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, House Hunters/House Hunters International (well, anything HGTV usually) and yes, my soap which I DVR religiously-- Young and the Restless. ;-)

5. What did you have for breakfast this morning?
Honey Nut Cheerios and a cup of hot tea.

6. What's your favorite cuisine?
Italian! Though some General Tso's Chicken sounds reeeeeally good right now...

7. What foods do you dislike?
I don't do oysters or anything slimy like that. And grapefuit-- just can't do it. Also tried some collard greens at my in-laws' house (they grew up in VA so they always ate them) and yeah-- not a fan.

8. What is your favorite chip flavor?
Probably tostitos scoops with salsa or salsa con queso. *drool*

9. What's your favorite CD at the moment?
A mix cd I made years back of songs that remind me of my crazy college years.

10. What kind of car do you drive?
black GMC Yukon Denali

11. Favorite sandwich?
chicken salad wrap with lettuce, tomato and cheese

12. What characteristics do you despise?
as evidenced by my previous post-- hypocrisy is one. People who are dishonest or two-faced. Materialistic people or people who think they are above everyone.

13. What is your favorite type of clothing?
I like anything comfortable, without giving off that "I'm a mom and have no time for myself" vibe. ;-) Jeans and a cute shirt suits me just fine. But when I'm relaxing at home, pj/lounge pants here I come.

14. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation.Where?
I would love to go to Italy or anywhere tropical.

15. What color is your bathroom?
one is white, one is green.

16. Favorite brand of clothing?
no favorite brand... anything that looks cute is fine with me.

17. Where would you retire to?
hands down-- Outer Banks of North Carolina. Love love love it there.

18. Favorite time of the day?
Night time after the kiddos and hubby are in bed. I can actually hear myself think.

19. What was your most memorable birthday?
My 21st... though it was only memorable to a certain point.... ;-) lol

20. Where were you born?
Steubenville, OH

21. Favorite sport to watch?
Pittsburgh Steelers football and Pittsburgh Penguins hockey

22. What fabric detergent do you use?
Tide... and when I want to shake it up a bit I use Tide w/ April Fresh Downy ;-)

23. Were you named after anyone?
My middle name (Jane) is after my grandmother. (mom's mom)

24. Do you wish on stars?
eh... not really.

25. When did you last cry?
LoL... I got kinda teary-eyed watching Hines Ward start crying on DWTS, if that counts. Last CRY cry was probably a few weeks ago when I was feeling so freaking frustrated and overwhelmed. It was a bad day with the kiddos and I just had a lot on my plate that day. Sometimes a good cry makes you feel SO much better!

26. Do you like your handwriting?
Most of the time. When I'm not writing in a hurry, I like it.

27. If you were another person, would YOU be friends with you? Absolutely! I think I'm a great friend. I am loyal, supportive, trustworthy, honest and fun with a little sarcastic smartassedness (is that a word) thrown in there. ;-) I would give the shirt off my back (but I might have to keep my bra) if you needed it.

28. Are you a daredevil?
Let me think.....uh, no.

29. Do looks matter?

30. How do you release anger?
Yell...cry... throw random (unbreakable) things at walls... have a margarita.... ;-)

31. What were your favorite toys as a child?
my Casio keyboard, hula hoop, my barbies/barbie dollhouse, games like Candyland and Sorry....

32. What class in High School was totally useless?
I'd have to say Spanish, only because we spent more time watching La Bamba and eating candy than learning Spanish. I would have liked to come away from 3 years of Spanish class having known how to say more than "hola" "Como estas" and random spanish curse words. I think my daughter at 4 years old knows more spanish due to Dora and Diego than I learned in 3 years of spanish class!

33 Favorite movies? Armageddon, Empire Records, Under the Tuscan Sun, The Mummy, Billy Madison, The Notebook

34. What are your nicknames?
My coworkers called me Bethel, but I don't really have any current nicknames.

35. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off?

36. Do you think that you are strong?
I try to be. I've gotten stronger over the years.

37. What's your favorite ice cream flavor? oreo

38. What is your favorite color?

39. What is your least favorite thing about yourself?
I care too much what people think.

40. Who do you miss the most?
my relatives who live far away... my grandparents who've passed

41 What color pants are you wearing?
Grey pj pants

42. Last thing you ate?
cheddar cheese chex mix...that stuff is addictive.

43. Favorite song?
hmm... right now I would say it is Adele's "Rolling in the Deep"

44. If you were a CRAYON what color would you be?

45. Last person you talked to on the phone?
My cousin Brenda

46. What is the first thing you notice about the opposite sex?
hmm... I'd say eyes.

47. Favorite drink?
hot tea

48. Do you wear contacts?
nope. No glasses or contacts.....yet.

49. Favorite day of the year?
Christmas Day

50. Endings happy or sad?
Happy of course

51. Winter/summer?
Summer, no contest.

52. Hugs OR Kisses?
Both, please.

53. What is Your Favorite Dessert?
anything chocolate

54. What Book(s) are you reading? Just got done reading "Heaven is for Real" by Todd Burpo. Very very interesting read...

55. What is on your mouse pad?
Pittsburgh Penguins hockey schedule

56. What Did You Watch Last night on TV?
DVR'd shows-- Y&R, Tabatha's Salon Takeover

57. Favorite Smells?
my clean kiddos after their baths, vanilla candles, fresh baked bread, the air outside after it rains, clothes fresh out of the dryer

58. Stones or Beatles?

59. What's the furthest you've been from home?
probably the Caribbean... either Punta Cana or Cayman Islands, not sure which is further from me

60.What is the most memorable moment in your life to date?
The birth of Alyson and Will, and my wedding day :-) Best moments of my life, hands down.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Weekend: Success.... Carnival: Fail.

Ugh... WHY do I always pick Saturday night to stay up extra late, knowing fully well that I will have to wake up close to 7am on Sunday?? 3 1/2 hours of sleep....soooo tired.

And of course the minute I sit down to type this, my 3 year-old decides she wants to crawl on my lap. She just told me, "I want to sit on your legs. Put your pooter (she won't say computer for some reason!)down." LOL Meanwhile, Will is in the kitchen playing with the ABC fridge magnets... and I'm hearing the ABC song over. And over. And over. And over...... Never a dull moment in this house. Well, never a quiet moment is more like it.

I decided at 11pm lastnight to put Will's baby pictures in a photo album I bought awhile back. Yeah, only took me a year to start a photo album for him. I've totally been slacking where that's concerned. Anyway, going through hundreds of pics and trying to get them in somewhat of an order took me a few hours. Then, despite it being 1:30am, I decided to watch some shows I dvr'd.

yawn.... I need a nap.

Ok... kiddos are officially preoccupied with their chicken nuggets and fruit, so mama has a (short) moment of peace.

Onto the weekend...

This weekend was nice.... Russ has been so busy with work all through the week, so it was nice that we got to go out as a family and spend the afternoon together yesterday. We went out to dinner here in town, and it just so happened that the carnival is in town. You could see everything from the windows of the restaurant so of course Alyson asked if she could go to the carnival every 2 seconds during dinner. She was SO excited to go and kept saying how she wanted to go on the ferris wheel. So after dinner, off to the carnival we went. We didn't have our stroller with us, so we had to hold Will since he isn't walking very well yet, and the area the carnival was at was all gravel. We were trading him off about every 5 minutes because he was constantly squirming to get down. Aly was saying how she wanted to go on the rides, so we went to go get some tickets. Fortunately, Russ has done some work for the guy who owns the carnival stuff, so we got Aly's hand stamped for free, plus free tickets for us. THANK GOD, because Aly chickened out on every ride. Didn't ride ONE THING. Russ and I both took her on the merry-go-round, and at the last second with both of us, she got down and headed right back out the gate. Same thing with the kiddie roller coaster and this ride that's kinda like the teacup ride (the one that spins around) but it was teddy bears. Makes me kinda rethink taking her to an amusement park this summer! Guess we'll have to wait and see. Maybe if she had another kid with her she would have gone on the rides. Who knows.

After the carnival lastnight we went to the new house, then took the kiddos to Coldstone Creamery where Aly downed some vanilla ice cream with sprinkles (she never wants anything different) and Will had his first kiddie cup of Apple Fritter ice cream. I think he would have licked the cup if we had given it to him once the ice cream was all gone-- he loved it! Mommy and daddy went the healthy route and split a strawberry banana smoothie, though chocolate was sounding pretty darn good.

Today we had church, then breakfast, then back home for a day of just relaxing. (ie: cleaning and laundry for me-- real relaxing.) Russ had a lot of stuff to do in the office today so it's just me and the kiddos hanging out. Can't say I've gotten much done today besides laundry though. The house looks like a small tornado went through. I swear, sometimes I wonder why I bother to clean. Seriously. It's frustrating. Add three big dogs to the mix and I feel like I need a drink by the end of the night...lol! (Preferably a glass of wine or a margarita.)

All I know is....bedtime is gonna be early tonight for the kiddos. And probably for me.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Updates! :-)

Ok, so seeing all your new posts inspired me....lol! I'm jumping on the blog updating bandwagon too. ;-)

Where to begin...

Well, my last post was in February, and I had written about how Russ and I just booked a trip to Cancun. So I guess my updates will start there :-)

We went to Cancun from April 7-10...this was pretty much an early birthday present for me, since my bday was April 13th (the big 3-1.) We stayed at Live Aqua and it was sooooo relaxing there! It's a very zen-like spa type atmosphere there. As soon as you walk in the lobby, there are beautiful water features and the scent of eucalyptus in the air. It's an all-inclusive resort and isn't considered adults only but we didn't see many kids there at all, just a few people with babies. We stayed on the 5th floor in an "Aqua Club" room and had access to the Aqua Lounge which is located on the same floor. They have snacks out throughout the day and various liquor tastings each day. Russ and I aren't big drinkers at all (I think we still have liquor from our wedding in2005!), but we definitely enjoyed the tequila tasting our last night there!! They had about 20 or so different bottles of tequila out that night...fun stuff, I'll just say that!

The beach was B-E-A-UTIFUL!! Absolutely gorgeous clear turquoise water. Each morning we woke up and ordered room service breakfast and enjoyed that breathtaking view. We'd spend a few hours at the beach/pool areas then head out for some shopping, etc... Unfortunately my husband had the attitude that "I'm already tan so I don't need sunscreen"--- yeah, he ended up paying for that after the first day at the beach. Aloe was his best friend for the rest of the trip. I made sure I got pictures of that.

Aside from shopping (the mall was right across the street from the resort--awesome!), we took a late-night boat ride through the lagoon and out into the ocean a little and got to see the resorts in the hotel zone all lit up-- absolutely gorgeous. The boat owner and his captain tried finding the croc named "Ponchito" that hides out in a certain part of the lagoon, but he wouldn't make an appearance for us. I can't say I was disappointed about that!

We made sure to check out the local Hooters restaurant too, one evening...LOL. ONLY because they were the only place close to our resort where we could watch the Pittsburgh Penguins hockey game. The Pens won in overtime, and we got to watch a beautiful sunset over the Nichupte Lagoon in the process. :-) Great night.

Anyway, it was SO great to get away for a few days. Russ's mom and her husband watched the kids the first few nights, then my parents had them the last few nights. They all stayed at our house so it was great not having to take the dogs to the kennel, plus the kids got to stay in a familiar environment. Not that they aren't at our parents' houses all the time, but we figured they'd be missing us so it was better that they got to at least sleep in their own rooms at night. Aly's very much into a routine, so it seemed to work out better that way. I'll be sure and post some pics of the trip very soon!!

In other news--

My baby boy Will is turning ONE on May 22nd!! This year has FLOWN!! I can't believe it's been a year since I was blessed with my son! He's already cutting his 7th tooth, and has been *trying* to walk for the past few weeks. He'd take about 5 or so steps then plop down on his butt. Today, he was walking all over the place, so I think he's got it down now. He still looks like he's had a few too many to drink when he walks, but he can go longer distances now. He gets a huge grin on his face-- so proud of himself. Of course, now I can't keep track of him. This is when I really start to miss the days where I'd put him in one spot and know he wasn't going to move from that spot.*sigh* lol

OH-- another huge update. In mid-February, Russ and I saw a few homes we wanted to look at on realtor.com. Two in particular really looked like they had what we wanted. (I wasn't getting my hopes up though-- we'd been looking on and off for four or so years with no luck.) Well, on Feb 13th we looked at 2 houses about 5 minutes from where we live now... the first home had a great lot, great neighborhood, but crappy layout. The second home, well---- was IT. We just knew. Great neighborhood, big flat backyard, lots of space. Seriously, we weren't halfway through the house and my husband was talking about making an offer! We put an offer on the house right after we looked at it... got a counteroffer which was still more than what we wanted to pay, but we couldn't pass it up... so we accepted their counteroffer and are now new homeowners (again!)

The house is a 5 bedroom 2 3/4 bath with about 3000 sq feet. Lots of room for the kiddos. I'm excited they they'll actually have a designated playroom now, since every room in our current house seems like a playroom!! The kitchen is big, we have a formal dining room now, plus we have a spare bedroom again! Just can't wait to move in. Yeah.... not in the house yet. :-( Closing took awhile... we didn't close til the end of March. The house really hadn't been updated much since it was built (yeah, wait til I post pics-- it was interesting), so renovations have been going on for over a month now. At this point, everything we needed to do in order to move in is done except for countertops. We are still waiting for kitchen and bathroom countertops to be installed, which isn't happening until the 18th (hopefully a little before that.) Our moving date is set for the 27th, so the next few weeks are gonna be busy!! Aside from packing for college, I really haven't gone through the moving process before. Moving in our current house with Russ was such a gradual process-- a few things here,a few things there-- that it wasn't a big ordeal. This is gonna be interesting, being that we have 7 years of stuff accumulated in this house. We've already thrown out or donated a lot of stuff, but there's still so much to do! I'm nervous and excited at the same time. This will be a great change for us though. It'll just be great knowing that's the house we're in for the long term. I'll keep you updated... I have lots of before and after pics I'll post soon too.

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend! :-)