Friday, August 22, 2014

Summer 2014

Well one week done with work.  My schedule is the most complicated thing on the face of the Earth (I don't even think I am being that dramatic) but it allows me to only work three days a week.  And although sometimes it is hard as I feel like I am doing nothing well instead of one thing really well, I know I would regret not spending times with these boys of mine if I went full time.  

So in celebration of week one in the books here are some memories from summer.  We had such a fun break: California, Mexico, a crazy amount of pool time, playing outside, catching up friends, and most importantly spending many days and nights together as a family!  How many days until the next summer again??
Boys getting their suntans

Spontaneous chips and salsa and margarita Tuesday. 

We cleaned the garage.  Can I offer you a scooter, bike, something to ride?

Charlie and his buddy Jed looking for planes.  I think they look like twins. 

Paul and Delilah deep in summer love conversation.  

Went to Paul's friend Charlie's house (not to be confused with his brother Charlie) and washed a car.  Entertainment for at least an hour.  A genius idea by Charlie's mom.  

Family pool time.  Paul was real stressed with the sun in his eyes.  

I love taking pictures of Charlie because when you say "cheese" he gives you this grin.  And he thinks Popsicles are pretty awesome too.  

We tried a night swim party, brought beer and ordered pizza, thinking we were real fun.  Of course it started to rain right as the kids jumped in.  They swam for a bit anyway, but were FREEZING when it was time to get out.

A lot of baseball.  The neighbor boy just started playing and has asked Ryan to play catch many, many times.  Luckily, Ryan LOVES this.  Then our boys want to join the fun.  As you can see, I just sit back and take pictures and drink a beer.  I'm really good at summer.  

Thursday, August 21, 2014

My Boys, The Readers

Reading is so important to me and I would do many questionable things to pass that on to my children. So far I must be doing something right, because both children seem to love it.  Charlie now takes books and pretends to read them with all sorts of sounds and inflections.  You would die of adorable overload (it's a real condition).  

My mom gave Paul some early reader books which he memorized in 2 hours.  The other night he asked me if he could lay in my bed and read like I do.  Obviously I said yes.  He turned on the lamp and proceeded to read four books to me.  It was the sweetest thing I have witnessed.  I hope this love of reading continues.

Next week I'll share some of my favorite reads of the summer!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Home Improvement DIY

I don't think I would call "do it yourself" home improvement our "thing."  In the process it usually leaves one of us not mad, but huffy.  Is that an adjective?  Nevertheless, I was on Pinterest overload this summer and had a lot of "ideas."  But these ideas only came to fruition the last week of summer.  Of course.  

The first project was a jewelry organizer.  I don't know about you but my jewelry was just bunched all together in my closet, in a drawer and I never knew what I had.  In fact when I went through things for the project I found many broken earrings and many without matches.  How did I lose so many earrings?  Who knows.  But now everything is organized and sorted.  Hello summer nesting.  No I'm not pregnant.  

So I found this project on Pinterest (duh) and I swore I pinned a link to it, but now I can't find it anywhere.  I just spent 20 minutes looking but now I am giving up.  Know that this is not my original idea and I did follow some steps.  I bought a frame and a metal sheet from Hobby Lobby.  Yes, Hobby Lobby.  And I feel bad about that because of the no birth control thing, but I couldn't find this ridiculous metal sheeting anywhere else and so I went in and I felt guilty the whole time.  If this jewelry organizer didn't look so cute I would feel really awful.  

Anyway, I spray painted the frame and then secured the metal sheeting behind it.  Ryan hung it for me.  Ryan and I have a different approach to hanging things.  I eyeball things, cross my fingers and hope for the best.  Ryan measures, there is a level involved and it is a much more arduous process.  But don't worry, it looks better when Ryan does it.  Figures. 
The Handyman

The final product.  I hung my necklaces on a contraption I picked up at IKEA for 10 dollars.  I'm pretty impressed with myself.  

The next project was a little harder.  We wanted to frame the mirror in the boy's bathroom.  By we I mean me.  All of our mirrors are the standard, old, boring look but I decided to tackle the boy's bathroom first because if we really messed up there was a less of a chance people would actually see it. There are tons of tutorials on this on Pinterest as well, but I found this one the most helpful.  It is not perfect, but it looks much much better.  And now we need new light fixtures in there.  But I have to give Ryan a break or else he will divorce me.  


Finally, we have quite a bit of blank wall space in our house.  But I hate putting stuff up just to put it up.  I like the idea of a gallery wall, but I am not sure if I want to showcase it in our main family room. There is a large wall between Paul's room and the guest room and I thought we could experiment there. This is just a start and I'm thinking we can expand this and fill up the entire wall.  I bought some of these frames at IKEA and some at goodwill and spray painted them.  I have a new found love for spray paint.  

Don't worry, I have many more ideas... stay tuned.  Sorry Ryan.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Back to Life, Back to Reality

Before I get started, have you all read this article?  My friend Sarah sent it to me and it is hilarious!   Since I went on two vacations one with kids and one without, I can personally affirm how true this situation is.

Well back at it today.  The great thing about being a teacher is that it is a fresh start.  You can wipe the slate clean and start over.  Everyone is so optimistic at the beginning of the school year.  You can smell the freshly sharpened pencils.  The students seem excited about their newly purchased binders.  Who the hell know what happens by late September, but I love the buzzing around the first days of school.

To celebrate this school year I bought myself these amazing new grading pens from Amazon.  If you are a teacher you need these ASAP.  Even if you are not a teacher you probably need them.  Look at all these colors!

We were actually back to work last week without students.  And the air conditioning was broken.  I know many schools have never had air conditioning and let me just say AMEN to you.  It was awful. We were all wearing shorts and tank tops, which obviously not very professional but absolutely necessary.  Hopefully things are up and running this week.  Because no air conditioning with 30 high schoolers in a classroom can only lead to one thing: puberty stank.  And that my friends is disgusting.

A little classroom preview.  

I also bought Charlie some back to school kicks.  Guess from where?  AMAZON.  What did people do before this one-click phenomenon?  Is it even money?  It's amazing.  They are so freaking cute and he looks even more adorable when wearing them.  Side note: a nine year old girl thought Charlie was a girl at the park the other night.  Instead of letting it go, I made sure to correct her.  I'm very mature.

They boys have a big transition when we go back to work as well.  Paul asked me the other morning, "You have to go to work AGAIN?"  So another Amazon (should they give me money for all these mentions?) purchase for Paul helped ease his pain.  This little device pitches the balls to you for a fun baseball afternoon!  It is a big hit with the entire neighborhood.  If you're a boy.  

As I am starting my 11th year teaching I feel like I have a few things down.  For example, yesterday I treated myself to a manicure.  I went with a blue/teal color.  The lady next to me commented that it was a very bold choice.  I told her it was trendy now and I had teenagers to impress.  It is really great that I can catch some girl's attention with my fashion choices and nail polish color.  Ha!  Here is to another school year.  May my students be nice, the air conditioning strong and fall break be here before I know it!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Hola Mexico 2014

I miss you sweet ocean! 

At the end of July we were able to take a CHILD FREE vacation to an all inclusive resort in Mexico. I KNOW!!!  My requirements for the trip were a swim up bar.  Seriously, that is all I cared about. And just so you know, I frequented that bar many, many, many times.  My itinerary read as: read, eat, drink, repeat.  Well, we were very successful on all accounts.  We came home tan, a little fatter, and 100% hungover.  Oops.

The swim up bar: Where many of my troubles occurred.  

We mostly stayed on the resort but one day we did venture out for a Catamaran boat ride that included  snorkeling and the boys doing synchronized dives off the side of the boat.
Does this bikini top look like lingerie?  I think so too but then I thought, hell it's Mexico.  Anything goes. 

See that man in the middle?  We learned that he lives in Mexico and at Christmas time dresses up as Santa and gives presents to all the little kids.  Which is nice and he really did look like Santa Claus.  But ole Santa had a few drinks on the boat ride and became a little creepy.  When we were disembarking the boat, Santa fell down (apparently he just had hip surgery) on the cement.  He wanted NO ONE to help him get up and it was a strange situation.  So obviously instead of being compassionate, Ryan reenacted the scene a million times.

"My hip."

It was so nice to spend a little one-on-one time with Ry guy.  It was actually hard to appreciate the freedom of NO time restraints.  Plenty of times the first day I was reaching for my phone wondering what time it was.  Finally I had to tell myself, "it doesn't matter what time it is.  There is nothing to do." That realization was magical.

This getaway also included our friends Kathy and Ryan which was nice because the boys could do "boy" things like play ping-pong and the girls could do "girl" things like drink 32 margaritas.

You can also thank Kathy for every single one of these pictures because as usually I took none.

My Ryan continued to tell us we were WILD.  We took it as a compliment.  I don't know if he meant it as one.  

This Ryan decided to create his own signature drink.  It was served it the tiniest cup I have ever seen in my life.  

Me with a drink.  This is what I looked liked for 4 days straight.  

We had a great time and it only took me two weeks to fully recover at home.  Thank you to both set of grandparents for watching the boys.  They also had a "vacation" of a lifetime.  Mexico seems like a lifetime ago, as Ryan's alarm went off super early this morning and he hit the road for his first day of work.  Mine is tomorrow.  I will mourn at the pool with the boys today.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

California Trip 2014!

Again, summer is my season.  I love the relaxed feel, the sunshine and of course the vacations!  We went to California with my family and the boys LOVED it.  The plane was really exciting (obviously), the sand tasted yummy (gross) and they were enthralled with the ocean! 

I was a little worried about the flight.  I knew Paul would be okay because he likes to watch movies and he is obsessed with planes.  I was right.  Charlie was our wildcard.  My friend gave me a leftover drink ticket which I promptly used to order a bloody mary.  Nothing can be that bad with vodka and tomato juice.  Again, I was right.

Charlie was just fine on the plane.  He bounced around from person to person and even fell asleep at the end.  We were feeling pretty proud of ourselves until we started driving through the mountains of Mendocino.  Then Charlie got carsick.  SIX times.  At one point I just sat in the back seat with a clean diaper under his mouth and told Ryan to just keep going.  We just had to get it over with.

However, once we were there is was a great vacation.  I love that little boys are thrilled to chase birds, throw rocks, and build sand castles.  The drive back was much more successful as in no one got sick and Charlie was a little more restless on the plane, but we made it out with little to no judgement from other passengers and I call that a win-win.

Thanks for my dad for taking all of these pictures.
He is so blonde and so cute! 
The windup to play croquet.  In case you wanted to know what that looked like. 
Someone tries to keep up! 
Life is good! 
Sometimes all you need are rocks.  
Eating Sand.  Yum?

This is what you do to your big brother when he won't pay attention to you! 

Friday, June 27, 2014


Sorry to tell you that during summer everyday is Friday.  But I will try not to rub that in!

Maureen and baby Vivi were here last week!  We fit 3 car seats in the back of my car and Ryan reminded us that we used to be drunk and promiscuous.  Now we have babies.  Thanks Ryan. 

The next day we had a play date with our two friends from college.  One has two boys.  The other has one.  Meaning we had 5 boys and one girl.  Vivi is a lucky lady to choose from some nice chaps.

Most play dates revolve around eating snacks.  Actually that is true whether you are 3 or 33.  

We decided to take a picture of everyone together.  This always sounds like a good idea and then is not.  This is the best shot:

And a "behind the scenes" look.  There were promises, bribery and some stern talking.   If only they could just sit on the couch and smile.

Maureen and I then packed up the troops and headed to the mountains.  Actually I only took Paul and left Charlie with Ryan back at home.  My reasoning?  Paul will watch TV.  And sometimes I like to have cocktail hour with a side of Mickey Mouse.  True story.

We had a great weekend full of mountain air.  We celebrated Diz's birthday, Paul walked a llama and then cried he couldn't take one home and we hiked.  Exciting development on the hike was that Paul decided he had to go to the bathroom.  #2 bathroom.  It was really a special moment watching my son poop in nature.  I'll cherish it always.

Tori and Will also just added a puppy to their home, Clover.  Paul loved Clover and followed her everywhere.  She tolerated it for the most part.

We walked to dinner one night and Paul did fine on the way there, but after some slices of twelve dollar kid's pizza and lemonade, he was tired on the way home.  Only Auntie MoMo would think of this solution.

Maureen and I arrived home Sunday afternoon.  We gave the kids a bath and put them to bed.  We were on the couch contemplating going to bed at 8:45 because we were exhausted.  Ryan reported that our actions proved this the lamest girl's weekend EVER.  We stayed up until 10:00 to try and prove we still have it.  We do not.

Vivian was super cute and it was a wonderful weekend with my best gals.  And no, I don't want a third baby.  In case you were wondering.

In other news, here are two great reads about mom and their swimsuits.  One is sweet and one is funny!
Also, I probably need these pants, right?

Tori sent me this and it is SO FUNNY.

Happy Friday!! xo

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