Monday, February 28, 2011

Sweet Perfection

I took Abby to see Disney on Ice yesterday.  She is easily overwhelmed in new and chaotic environments.  For those of you who have never experienced Disney on Ice, it is slightly chaotic.  Kids are wandering in different directions, focused on all the fun lights and colorful displays.  I wasn't sure how she was going to do. 

There was 25 minutes until the show started and Abby wanted to get out of the maze of people walking around.  She wanted to sit in her seat, and didn't want to leave.  Every 30 seconds, maybe more frequently, she asked "are they coming out yet, mommy?".  I kept telling her how much time we had left to wait.  She was patient, looked around, soaked it all in and asked a lot of questions. 

When the show started, her eyes widened, she gasped and put her hands over her mouth and smiled.  She loved it.  Well, she loved almost all of it.  There was only one act she could have done without and thankfully it was early on.  Abby sat still the entire time (1 hr 45 mins).  She watched and danced in her seat.  She clapped and waved at the princesses as they skated by (we were only 2 rows off the ice, so we were close to all the action).  Abby recognized every single one of the characters, even helping me out on occasion.  She did not even want to walk around during the intermission, she didn't want to risk missing anything. 

When the show was over, she was still smiling and clapping.  She turned to me and asked if Mickey and Minnie and Buzz Lightyear and Jessie and Woody and Donald and Daisy could come over to her house.  She wanted to have a play date with them.

Moments like this bring tears to my eyes because I am extremely touched by her innocence and the pure look of joy on her face.  She was in awe.  It was sweet perfection!

Then we got home and tried putting Abby down for her nap/quiet time.  She was still processing the show and was wound up like I've never seen her.  She went to sleep later than normal, which meant we had to wake her up at 4:30pm and that is NEVER fun.

Friday, February 25, 2011


It was a long week.  It started off challenging and progressively got better over the course of the week, work wise.  I was able to shuffle responsibilities around, give people new challenges and see a bit of renewed energy toward the many hurdles we have to climb in order to reach a good place. 

On the home front, I let the stress of work get to me and there are a couple instances where the punishment did not fit the crime with my kids.  I loudly (not quite a tell) told Emily "NOOOOOOO" when she took two dirty containers out of the recycle bins in our kitchen and put them in her mouth.  YUCK!  I was short on patience one morning trying to get everyone ready for the day and curtly told Abby to eat her breakfast or she wasn't going to get to play with her barbies.  She couldn't answer because she was eating and then proceeded to get upset.  I don't blame her!  We all recovered, I showered them with love and we are almost back to normal. 

I keep trying to find balance between work and family and the things I personally want to do.  I'm not sure balance can be achieved with kids so young and a job so demanding.  People keep telling me it gets easier once the kids get older.  I think I'll hold on to this chaos as long a possible, so my kids don't grow up too fast.  I'll do my best to keep the stress from both work and family compartmentalized and revel in the fun times a little more. 

Happy Friday Everyone.  To those of you on the Bay Area - enjoy the snow!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Thanks for the Flexibility - Tuesday Went Something Like This

On Monday, I had a post that talked about flexibility in the work place and how I was thankful that I have such flexibility.  I tempted fate...  

Monday evening, Steve asked if he could leave a little earlier than normal for work on Tuesday.  No early meetings for me, so it seemed like an okay idea...

Tuesday morning is going along normally, no real issues.  I'm on target to leave the house at 8am for work.  At about 7:59am, I look at my iphone and notice a text message from our nanny.  She sent a message at 6:30am letting us know she wasn't going to make it work today because she was sick.  I really should make it a habit of checking my phone earlier in the morning...

Okay, I had meetings starting at noon that I couldn't miss.  Steve had already left for work, Abby needed to get to preschool by 8:30am, etc...  I scramble to get the kids ready to take Abby to school.  When I go to load them into the car, I realize that Steve hadn't put Emily's car seat back in.  Since the previous day was Presidents day, Steve, Abby, Abby's friend and her Daddy went to San Francisco.  We had taken Emily's car seat out, so we could put the friend's car seat in.

My text message to Steve went something like this:
Thx for putting Em's car seat back in my car.  Pls reread with sarcasm and fury!

Once I collect myself, I go back into the house, then get out the double stroller and we walk to Preschool.  Thankfully it was a beautiful day!  We are only 25 minutes late, not a big deal.  I offered to let the teacher's keep Emily too, with the agreement that I would be back by 6pm to collect both of them.  They didn't buy it, darn it!

On my walk back from the Preschool, I stopped to get coffee.  Trying to push a double stroller that only has single occupancy with one hand and drink coffee with the other just led to me spilling coffee all over my hand and the stroller.  We got home, I put Emily down for her nap and just stared at the TV for about 30 minutes.  It was on, but I was not processing or even absorbing the contents of the Today Show. 

Steve ended up coming home at 11:45 and I made it to work for my 12 noon meeting.  My short commute comes in handy.  I'm still trying to catch up from the half day of lost time, but no one at work pestered me, bothered me or put pressure on me for coming into the office late or not being 'online' in the morning.  Thanks for the flexibility, I needed it!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Blog Hopping and Blog Shopping: My Favorites

What an amazing web (pun intended) you can weave from reading a single blog.  One day I found myself bouncing from one blog to the next and coming across a number of purchasable items that I found just wonderful.  These bloggers are a creative bunch of people.  Making me feel inadequate that I create financial models and not beautiful goods such as the ones below.  Thankfully, all of these are for sale!!

Funky Vintage Kitchen sells these necklaces, aren't they lovely?

 The Pleated Poppy sells these scarves (bought this exact one yesterday):

Garnish sells wonderful packaging and has a lot of great ideas!  I use their brown kraft paper as gift wrap (0.25 a sheet, they are currently out of stock, but check back).  Cheaper that the usual gift wrap and it's the perfect backdrop for fun ribbons, stamps and a child's crayola drawings. 

Soup Swap Packaging if you are doing a neighborhood soup swap.  A great idea during this cold weather. 

Children's Party Table, isn't this fantastic!

Olive Manna sells textile and paper goods.  Very clean lines, great stuff! 

Divine Twine - is all the rage right now

Lovely Stained Wooden Gift Tags...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Just What I Needed

Just what I needed and when.  There's no denying, I am working a lot right now and not seeing my kids as much as I would like.  I have always struggled with being a working mom, the guilt (this is my biggest struggle), the need for wanting to be a good role model, choosing work over my family some days and not letting work get the best of me and impacting how I interact with my family (especially my husband).

Saturday night, the night when I worked until 2am, the night I was angry that I was doing work that should have already been done, the night that caused me to sacrifice both time (because I was most certainly going to need to sleep late on Sunday) and energy with my kids, on a weekend was getting to me.  I needed a break from my spreadsheets and was looking around at Working Mother Blogs.  The title of this one alone caught my eye: Working Moms Against Guilt

The have a wonderful post about outsourcing.  Not outsourcing as in shipping work off to another country, but outsourcing house cleaning and gardening and perhaps a few other household chores to increase the amount of time you have to spend with your family.  We outsource and I am going to look to outsource more. 

I particularly liked the post The F Word.  Now that I have your attention.  The F word refers to having Flexibility in your job over money, a shorter commute or other factors that come into play as a working mom.  It got me thinking about the fact it was Saturday night, I was working and I was not happy about it.  What I also realized is that I can make most doctors appointments, when I work from home 1day a week I get to see my girls when I go into the house to grab lunch, I am able to attend events at Abby's preschool and if our caregiver is sick, I have the flexibility to make up the work day while they are napping or after they go to sleep (thankfully this doesn't happen often). 

Finding this blog was the pick me up I needed and yesterday I appreciated that I didn't need the flexibility, but it is there when I do need it most days.  And, my 4 mile commute isn't bad either!

Monday, February 21, 2011

GO!screen Giveaway

I was hoping to have made goodies of my own for a giveaway, but 2 things happened. 

1.) I spent some of my free time last week sewing for a very special person who's baby shower was this past weekend. I made a coordinating car seat cover, a bib and a zippered pouch. 

2.) I spent a lot of time fixing something that is now 2 weeks overdue (work related), until 2am on Saturday and again on Sunday.  It's done now.

To make up for broken promises, I'm giving away 1 tube of GO!screen sunscreen.  See my post from last week about this fantastic product here.

Please leave a comment to enter, 1 comment per person, please.  You have until 12 noon pacific time on Tuesday February 22nd to enter.  Check back that afternoon to see if you've won. 

Have a great week!

Friday, February 18, 2011

The Week in Review

It was a good week and it was a bad week. 

The Good:
  1. Spending 4 days in the snow with my family.  
  2. Watching Abby and Murphy exhaust themselves while walking in the snow.  
  3. Emily had fun in a new environment and exploring (climbing stairs and furniture). 
  4. Laughing with my husband over silly things again, this was nice! 
  5. Getting clearance from Emily's eye Dr. that her droopy eyelid wasn't getting worse or causing vision problems.  She was cooperative as they were shining lights and touching her face.  And yes, 'droopy eyelid' is the proper medical term, I think. 
  6. Sharing sweet moments with my children, snuggling with them, laughing with them and hearing Emily say 'uh oh' for the first time.
  7. Seeing Abby's school projects which included tracing the letters of her name (Abigail) and connect sets of dots to the corresponding number.  Impressive for a 3.5 year old, but I might be biased.
  8. Getting excited about my trip to India, even though I'll be away from my kids way too long.

The Bad:
  1. Coming back to work after 4 days in the snow with my family.  The emails, the emails, I'm still trying to catch up. 
  2. Gearing up for budgeting season at work. 
  3. Trying to work through communication issues.
  4. Having to escalate issues to my boss.  I really like to try to resolve issues on my own.
  5. Abby talking a lot about 'pee' and 'poo'.  She picked up this potty language from school.  
I'd say it was an overall good week.  The 'Good' outweighs the 'Bad' and I have some great memories from the past week.

I hope everyone has a great weekend!

GO!screen: Easiest Sunscreen for Little Faces (and adults too!)

Whether your son our daughter has the requirement of going to preschool with sunscreen on, or you are out and about at the park every day, GO!screen sunscreen is for you.  I good friend of mine recommended it to me and I haven't turned back.  

The face is the trickiest place to apply sunscreen to wiggly little ones.  I can manage the lotion sunscreens on arms and legs, but this mineral based sunscreen is great for faces. And, it's toxic free with only 7 ingredients.  I don't know about you, but I'm trying to minimize how many harmful chemicals my kids come in contact with my kids.  It's refillable, good or the environment too... 

From the GO!screen website: GO!screen is a mineral powder sunscreen that uses the natural reflecting power of zinc oxide. It is a physical sunscreen that acts like thousands of umbrellas on your skin.

I am in no way affiliated with GO!screen, I just love the product!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

LOFT - 25% Off Through 2/22

LOFT is offering 25% off through 2/22.  Click here for the offer.  Hint: enter code PRESIDENT at checkout. 

I like this store.  It's affordable with good quality clothes.  I especially like their pants for wearing to work.  I ordered a few pairs for myself today!

These Black Pinstripe beauties are my favorite.  For those who know me, black is a dominate color in my wardrobe...  They are made with cotton and a touch of stretch (aka spandex).  Who wears 100% cotton pants anymore?  A touch of spandex is just lovely. 

The Vintage Pearl Giveaway - Over at Allora Handmade

A $50 gift certificate to the Vintage Pearl is the giveaway over at Allora Handmade.  Entries accepted until tomorrow.  The Vintage Pearl creates custom hand stamped silver jewelry.  Check out some of The Vintage Pearl creations, they are lovely!

Allora Handmade also has some fantastic fabric flower necklaces.  The Mini Modern in rich red is my favorite!

Happy Thursday!

Spring is Springing

Despite the many micro climates the Bay Area experienced yesterday; rain, hail, thunder, lightening, periods of sunshine and winds I was able to capture a picture of our flowering plum trees that are in bloom in our front yard.  I love this time of year when they are blooming and really wish they would look like this all year!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Recall This, Recall That

Before I had kids, I had no idea that I needed to pay attention to recalls or mail in those silly product registration cards.  I am definitely more aware of recalls because I have two little girls that depend on me for their safety and security.

One of the best things I have done is register for recall emails from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).  Any time a recall is posted on their site, I get an email.  I look at every single one of these emails and have found a handful of items that we own which have been recalled. 

I learned of a crib mattress recall for a mattress we purchased at Pottery Barn Kids.  The recall email came out, I printed it off and took it to the store the same day and received a new mattress.  The mattress was recalled due to it being smaller than it should have been, posing an entrapment hazard. 

Items covered in the recall emails cover more than just baby and kids products, they cover everything. 

You can receive the CPSC's recall notification emails by signing up here.  I highly recommend it! 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Vacation Misconceptions

We went to Lake Tahoe for 4 days this week.  We were on 'vacation'.  Our life before kids included leisurely, restful and mellow vacations.  Our vacations now, especially with our kids as young as they are (3 1/2 and 14 months), can be exhausting.

Earlier today Steve asked me when our vacations were going to be restful again.  I got to thinking about the definition of vacation to make sure our expectations are set appropriately.  Should we expect rest, or does 'vacation' simply mean to leave work for a few days.

Taken from the Merriam Webster online dictionary, 'vacation; is defined as the following:

Definition of VACATION

1: a respite or a time of respite from something : intermission
2: a : a scheduled period during which activity (as of a court or school) is suspended b : a period of exemption from work granted to an employee
3: a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation vacation at the beach>
4: an act or an instance of vacating

If we only apply definition 2a, then our vacations are not true vacations.  Activity is not suspended, just different.  All of the other definitions apply.  I guess in large part, our perception of a vacation being restful is a misconception.

On this past trip, our days were spent telling Emily 'off limits' every 30 seconds and chasing after her.  Abby wanted to play in the snow almost every waking moment she wasn't watching Tinkerbell.  Abby and Daddy went on adventures walking through the snow at least twice a day.  We also hit Northstar twice to watch the ice skaters and walk around in a different environment.

Despite the exhaustion, I wouldn't change a thing about our vacation.  It's really important to me to give our girls new and different experiences even if it's not easy.  We hope they grow to love travel, the snow, the beach, meeting people in different parts of the world and have wonderful memories of the vacations we took as a family.

PS: Here is 'Frosty' take 2.  We had snow this morning so Steve and Abby were able to re-build Frosty.  When I came outside to take a peek, she yelled "Mom, I made Frosty, Mom I made Frosty".  She was beyond excited...

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happiness Is....

Seeing these cute faces having fun in the snow...

Abby on skis for the first time:

Emily playing peek a boo with me while Abby was skiing:

Taking Murphy for a walk:

Abby excited about her snowman even though the snow didn't cooperate, it was perfect in her eyes:

Sunday, February 13, 2011

I'm Addicted to Zulily....

Zulily is a fantastic web site.  Their tag line is: "Daily Deals for Moms, Babies and Kids".  I have made a handful of purchases from Zulily.  I have purchase a Dr. Seuss t-shirt for Abby when she was in her Dr Seuss phase as well as a fairy dress, a fleece jacket, rain boots, books and shoes.  Emily has received many of the same types of items from Zulily that Abby has; rain boots, fleece jacket, a snuggly cotton outfit, books, a winter hat and shoes.

New deals are added every day and it best to get in early for a good selection on sizes.  The brands are the ones I would never buy at full price, so when they are up to 90% off, I feel like I am getting a lot of value for my money.  The brands are also not the run of the mill kids brands (Gap, Gymboree, Children's place, etc), but include Melissa & Doug, Little Me, Primigi, Baby Nay, Petit Lem, Envirosax, Boon, American Apparel and many others.

They are currently featuring Vintage Snoopy clothing and PJs.  I can't decide which ones I am going to buy.  Here are some of my favorites:

I'm not affiliated with Zulily, other than being a customer.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

"Houston, We Have a Problem"

Some notable occurrences from the past few weeks. 

Asked my husband the same question, 3 times in 30 minutes.  I don’t remember asking the question or the answer, any of the 3 times.  So I asked again.

Put the dirty pan that I used to steam broccoli, away.  The broccoli water was still in the pan.  Thankfully I was not the one who discovered the pan in the cupboard 2 weeks later.

Watched the same TV show from our DVR twice.  It wasn’t until I was almost through it the second time that I realized I had already seen it.

Dropped my oatmeal while trying to juggle coffee, my badge, purse, computer bag and my oatmeal while trying to get into my office.  I quickly learned that oatmeal splatters far distances.  I called facilities for a cleanup on aisle 4, with less than a minute to spare dialing into a weekly call that I CANNOT be late for. 

Forgot to pack diapers and wipes for Emily when we went to the pool.  We had to reuse her diaper after she got out of the pool.  Thankfully there were not any significant accidents.

I have not recently been injured in any way.  I am not taking drugs, not even Advil or vitamins.  I can honestly say, I am starting to see how exhaustion can take a toll after a period of time.  My challenge this weekend is to sleep as much as possible.  My goal is to become a productive member of society again.  

Friday, February 11, 2011

A Special Load of Laundry

After getting ready for work this morning I came out to the living room and found a special load of laundry waiting for me.  This is one load of laundry that doesn't annoy me...

A Bit of Sunshine

We have had fabulous weather lately.  Our trees are in bloom, we've taken the kids to the pool twice in the past month and we hit temperatures in the mid 70's a couple days.  It has to be too good to be true, and it is.  Our nice weather is coming to an end next week (the local 10 day forecast), but this weekend is going to be fabulous.

I know it's all relative as most of the country is at below normal temps and way above average snow fall levels.  I grew up in Northern California, had a brief 2 year stint in Chicago and then moved back.  The housing prices are crazy, the freeway congestion is at times more than I can handle, but this weather, this weather is amazing. 

I wish everyone a little ray of sunshine today, whether is comes from the actual sun shining down on you, a hug from your child, a kind gesture from a stranger or a memory from today that you will cherish for days and weeks to come.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

I Want to Make all of These - Easy Sewing Projects

I'm having trouble finding time in my days to get in a few minutes here and there to explore my creative side.  I've been compiling a list of things I want to make.

A Strap Cover for our SLR Camera.  The standard straps that some with the camera really hurt!

A coffee cozy - a greener solution for those paper coffee cup sleeves, and much cuter too!

Key Fobs - add a splash of color to my keys so I can find them in the black hole I call my purse.

Fabric Luggage Tag - would be great for my next business trip.  Will easily identify my standard issue black suitcase on the luggage carousel.

Some Aprons to have on hand for hostess gifts and just for fun!  I think Abby and Emily might need one for helping me in the kitchen when I do actually cook or bake.
  • Michael Miller Fabrics has what looks to be an easy tutorial for an apron.  They also have really great fabrics too!

My goal is to get started on these projects next week.  The fabric is washed and stack so neatly and I have thread in every color of the rainbow.  Expect to see some pictures in the next couple of weeks on my progress along with a giveaway or two of some of the things I've made. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tuesday: 2 Cookie Day

The day started off with a very unhappy 1 year old, crying out at 1am.  She has teeth coming in and was not happy.  It was a pleasure seeing her during the night.  I especially loved it when she fell asleep resting her head on my shoulder.  There is nothing more precious than this feeling, a little ones breath, my little ones breath on my neck as she takes a breath in and out, while she sleeps. 

After I got Emily back to sleep, I tried desperately to go back to sleep myself.  My mind was racing about all of my work to do's.  Instead of laying in bed awake, I got out of bed and worked for a couple hours.  I figured my restlessness was productive instead of getting increasingly annoyed as the time ticked away on my clock.

I started the day tired and it went quickly downhill during my morning meetings.  It took me a while to recover.  Thanks goodness for the people I work near.  They helped me overcome hurdles and get through the day.  A crass joke by one of my co-workers definitely changed the mood, for the better. 

I grabbed lunch and added a nice chewy chocolate chip cookie to the menu as a reward for simply making it to lunch.  Knowing the issues I had faced earlier in the day, a woman that works for me brought me back another cookie from a local bakery.  She is very thoughtful and I went ahead and ate this one too as I had earned it.

I really hope Wednesday isn't going to be a 2 cookie day!!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

When I Travel for Work - How I Make it Easy on My Kids...

I don't travel often for work.  When I do travel, I go to one or two places; Denver CO or India. 

India is my next trip, and I will be gone for a good chunk of time.  Almost twice as long as I've ever left my kids before.  It is going to be tough on all of us.

We purchased the books "When Mommy Travels" and "When Daddy Travels" by Harriet Ziefert.  They are great stories about what happens when either of us are away from home, traveling on business.  The "When Mommy Travels" book will be read daily when I'm gone on my next trip. 

These are some of the things I do for my kids while I'm away (some ideas come from the When Mommy/Daddy Travels books):
  • Tracking my time away on a calendar.  Using a basic calendar template and crossing off the days or putting stickers on the calendar to indicate the day is over is helpful in setting expectations for how much longer I will be gone. 
  • At least 1 phone call a day,  Be totally present during the phone call, get away from distractions and noise.  At times, they may not be interested in talking on the phone, but they will remember you called.
  • Send daily emails, explaining what is happening while I'm away.  When I was in India last time, I talked about the cows I'd see in the road on my way to work, the people I was meeting, my hotel room and dining experiences.
  • Letting Abby make a sign for us that greets us at the door when we get home, along with either a cake or cookies.  Abby has such a fun time making the sign with stickers, paints, markers, whatever she feels like using.  She has learned that she enjoys baking, especially when it comes to making something for her mommy or daddy.  
  • If it's a trip over a few days, I buy them a 'surprise'.  Abby is always very excited to talk to me about a 'surprise' and asks "what is it, what is it?".
  • For the longer trips, I leave behind a little gift to give them each day.  A little toy from the dollar store, a new coloring book, something small that I know they would enjoy.  More importantly it shows them that I am thinking of them.  
  • I let them pick one thing of mine they can keep in their room while I am gone.  When Steve was on his last trip, Abby kept his baseball hat in her room and that made her feel special.  
  • Have someone keep them busy during idle time, so they don't dwell on you being gone.  
My kids are 3 1/2 and 14 months old, so older children may not need gifts every day.  The key is to find a way to make them feel special while you are gone if they have a hard time with it.

Monday, February 7, 2011

The Weekend in Review & The Week Ahead

The weekend was loaded with great visits with family and friends!  The week ahead will prove to be a bit challenging to fit it all in, but somehow it will get done.  

The Weekend in Review (in chronological order)…
  • Walked the dog to the local Starbuck’s, with kids in the double stroller
  • Abby and I went to a brunch with my college friends
  • When we got home from the brunch, Grandma (my mom) and Gramps and Jammy (in-laws) were at our house, we had lunch then the girls went down for a nap and the in-laws left
  • After naps, we celebrated my Mom’s birthday with almost BBQ’d filet*, roasted sweet potatoes, salad and lemon meringue pie

  • Steve played tennis
  • When he got home I went to the gym
  • When Emily woke up for her nap, Steve and Grandma met me at the gym with the girls for a swim and lunch
  • When the girls went down for their naps, Grandma left, Steve and I prepped for a mellow super bowl party with our neighbors, hit the grocery store and refilled propane tanks for the BBQ
  • Sunday evening was spent tidying up and I started packing for our trip to the snow

The Week Ahead:
  • I have my team in from out of town so will be in meetings with them a lot this week
  • A going away lunch for a co-worker
  • A work baby shower that I’m hosting
  • A team dinner on Wednesday evening
  • Our house cleaners come on Thursday morning, which means we need to pick up the house Wednesday evening
  • We head to the snow for a couple days and I need to get all the girls things packed
  • Need to do my laundry and get myself packed for the snow

This week will be productive, busy, and I’m sure at times a bit stressful.  I’m looking forward to a few days away from work with my family, to see Abby ski for the first time and Emily play in the snow for the first time.  And of course, watch Murphy play in the snow until he’s so tired he can barely walk. 

*’Almost BBQ’d’ is defined as steaks that were half done when the propane tank ran out and had to be finished in the oven. 

Friday, February 4, 2011

She Kicked Me Out...

Steve typically does bath time for the girls as most days it is the only time he sees them in the evenings.

Tonight we split bath responsibilities and I was in charge of Abby.  She was bathed, hair was combed, teeth were brushed and a story read.  As is typical when I put Abby to bed, I crawl into bed with her and we go through a simple routine.  This routine involves scratching her head, scratching her back and a shoulder massage.  Yes, she is going to be a spa brat when she's older.  This routine does wonders for helping her wind down and get to sleep.

I was done with the routine, she was very mellow and politely asked "Please go to sleep Mommy".  I was a little confused, but assumed she just meant lay next to her while she falls asleep.  Then she asked again, "Please go to sleep Mommy".  I wasn't quite getting what she was trying to tell me so I asked her if she wanted me to leave.  Without hesitation she said "yes".  She kicked me out of her room. 

Is a 3 year old supposed to start kicking her Mommy out of her room this young?  This wasn't supposed to happen until she was at least in kindergarten?  I thought I had a few good years left of her always wanting me around.  My heart sank a little when she very politely asked me to leave.

Staying Organized - Is It Possible?

Staying organized and clutter free is a constant battle for me.  My profession involves reconciling data across multiple sources and reports.  Have I lost you yet?  I am pretty good at keeping track of data on paper and on my computer, but it's the tangible items I struggle to keep organized and in their place.  Perhaps I have too many tangible items, or perhaps having two small children and all their tangible items are just too much for me to keep up with.

A co-worker will be welcoming a new baby into her home soon and she has enlisted the help of an organizing professional.  What a great idea, but it comes with a cost that I'm not yet willing to shell out.  I've been doing some research on ways to get and stay organized and here are a few things I've purchased to help us get started....

Thin Felt Hangers - I redid my closet with these beauties and I was able to reclaim a ton of space.  These hangers are almost life changing.

Over the Door Shoe Organizer - From Crate and Barrel.  Very solid construction and materials.  This also saved a lot of space in my closet.

Container Store Dot Baskets - We use these in all closets in our house and for the girls toys.  They are easy to clean and easy to grasp with the handles.  These baskets have been roughed up quite a bit and have held up really well.

Paper Source File Folders - These little pretties actual make me file more often.  They really do!

The one thing I really need to focus on this year is purging, especially as my youngest is quickly going from one size of clothes to the next and progressing to a new stage of age appropriate toys.  I should carve out a little time each month to get rid of the things we no longer need or use.  Perhaps these purging tips can help?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Abby at the Lab

Abby is my 3 year old.  She is a sweet sweet child.  Always offering up hugs and kisses to her younger sister, dolls, mommy, daddy and even Murphy (the dog).  She is concerned about people when they cry or are upset and she is very aware of what is going on around her.

Abby has had a low grade fever for a while, so her Dr. and I decided it was time to get lab work done (boo hiss).

How do you prep young children for lab work.  How do you describe the needle they use to draw blood. And on my, how do you tell them they are going to take 5 vials.  I get lightheaded just thinking about it.

Based on some very helpful feedback from my facebook post, I asked that they give me the person who is best with kids.  I asked that they lay her down.  I armed Abby with an episode of Handy Manny on my iphone and a stuffed animal.  I told her to remain as still as possible.  I tried explaining what it might feel like and where the needle was going to go in.

When the needle went in she decided she wanted to watch the whole thing as opposed to watching Handy Manny. She cried, even reached screeching status at one point, but remained perfectly still. I was so proud of her.

I hate getting my blood drawn, and I mean hate it!  Watching it being done to my child is worse..

Once the technician was done, we couldn't get out of there fast enough.  Next stop, the local toy store..   She picked out a purse and a necklace and was happy as could be when I dropped her off at school. I hope we don't have to do that again any time soon...

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Last Night - Can I Have a Do-Over?

Last night went something like this....

12:30am I went to sleep.

1:05am Abby woke up crying because she couldn't find her Barbie.

1:47am Murphy was trying to navigate our none to spacious bedroom with a cone on his head (Murphy is our dog, a Golden Retriever) and bumping into everything.

3:02am Abby woke up crying again because she missed her Daddy.

3:55am Murphy moves around again, scratches the cone and plops down on the hardwood floors.

5:26am Emily starts crying, but puts herself back to sleep after 20 minutes.

6:24am Emily wakes up for the day.

7:00am I finally got out of bed.

I flew solo last night. Steve was away on business and I'm glad he'll be home today. I am supposed to reconcile millions of dollars of data at work in a couple hours. Coffee is going to be my best friend.