My new Hobby

I have a new silly hobby. Imagine that!

I like to collect glass bottles to use as vases. See standard boring vase above? I have no idea where that came from…but the red flowers are pretty:)

This is an old peanut butter jar. I still need to soak the label off but I like the jar! The peanut butter was good, too.
As I was browsing the Target dollar section (I know, me at Target?), I discovered these mini coke bottles! Aside from the fact that I despise Coke, I do love their bottles and thought this would make a lovely little vase. Now I just need to find someone to drink that Coke….

This is one of my favorites. It’s a little spice bottle. It used to have garlic powder in it and I had to soak it for about 3 days to get the smell out…

I discovered two of these little glass bottle vases during my first excursion to Ikea recently! How can you beat 79 cents?! A pretty little red flower to brighten up the living room. Of course, it would be better if the flower was real. But still…

And in other news: Samuel now speaks “Dr. Suess.” We always knew he would take after his daddy, who is quite gifted in learning/speaking other languages! We just never knew it would be….Dr. Suess.

“No fank you, Sam I Am!” or “I will not eat it in a truck or a car or in a train!” or “Fight all night and play all day!” (courtesy of “Green Eggs and Ham” and “Hop on Pop.”) Thank you, Dr. Suess. Your legacy lives on….He’s a whole lot cuter than you though. No offense.

P is for Popsicle!

Who doesn’t like a sweet, cool, refreshing popsicle on a hot summer day? I sure do and so do my little boys! Samuel and I have been trying to do special activities together during naptime and today’s special mommy-Samuel time was making homemade popsicles!

As you can see, they were thoroughly enjoyed by the Thomas munchkins:)

The Popsicle Maker himself

Fellow Popsicle Eater!

They were really easy and really delicious! First Samuel threaded the popsicle sticks with fresh, sliced fruit. We used kiwi, strawberries and grapes. I would suggest using the kiwi slices first and pushing them all the way down to the holder, followed by strawberries and grapes as you please! (or any other fruit you love). While Samuel was busy threading (and possibly sneaking fruit), I blended up some frozen peaches, about 1/2 cup of milk, some fresh strawberries and some honey. I filled the popsicle cups about halfway with the blended mixture and then when Samuel was done with the sticks, we pushed them in and froze them! I put the leftover mixture and fruit into an ice cube tray because I only have one popsicle set, courtesy of none other than Target! (Can you hear the bells playing?!)

Result: 2 Happy and Refreshed Boys, a Yummy Summery treat, and peace and quiet for 5 minutes:) Perfect!


Remember this?

Today I was fooled into thinking I was ready for workout 3. Fooled, I tell you! Maybe I ate something wrong or woke up on the end of the bed or something that caused my brain to lapse. I should have questioned my sanity and rolled over and gone back to sleep, I’m pretty sure.

So there I am, everything set up, standing bleary eyed in my workout clothes and I press “Workout 3” with a trembling hand. My heart starts to beat in anticipation. Am I crazy, I think to myself? You can do this, you can do this! You can’t do this. You’re not ready yet! Here is goes….

The upbeat music starts to play and there she comes, Jillian; the trainer who wishes death on you all in the name of a “Shredded body,” and her two sidekicks. She gives a congratulations about making it to level 3 (Oh, crap! What was I thinking?) and a dire warning about how utterly hard this is going to be. I should’ve tucked tail and run then but…I was filled with the false hope that I was ready.

Ready to die.

Jillian launches into the warm-up which was filled with exercises from the other two levels. What? Did I skip something? Aren’t we supposed to be warming-up, I think as I’m huffing through butt-kicks and double jump roping. It’s too early in the morning for this!

And then the workout begins. Each workout (1, 2 and 3) consists of 3 circuits: 3 minutes of strength, 2 min of cardio and 1 min of abs. You do that 3 times in each workout. By the end of circuit one, I was sweating and my limbs were trembling. You want me to do walk around push ups? Alternating lunges while jumping? jumping jacks with handweights? What did you just ask me, Jillian? To remember all the reasons I bought this DVD in the first place? Well, umm….I….my mind is blank. Why in the world did I buy this DVD? Why, oh why? Shredded? Me? It’s all a cruel joke. She gets paid to think up the hardest workouts ever and make you feel like a fool as you lumber around like an elephant in the privacy of your home. And there ,she and her two cronies sit with their 6-packs and lean sleek muscles.

You say I should have a 6-pack by this point in the DVD? Did I miss the memo? I have a…well, I can feel some muscles in there. Does that count? Oh, man, what kind of ab exercises? How come they can do that with their legs and I can’t? Come on, Heidi, give it your all. You know you’ll feel proud if you can make it through the ultimate goal: Workout 3! Plank jacks? Plank leg and arm raises with handweights? Do they sell handweights smaller than 3lbs?

And finally. I can’t believe it! It’s Cooldown time. I collapse with jelly-like legs, trembling arms and a sweat covered body to the exercise mat. I’m almost too weak to stretch my muscles. Almost. A nice cold shower sounds so good right now. So does swimming. I heave a sigh of relief and accomplishment and stumble on shaky legs towards the bathroom. I pass my reflection in the mirror on the way in. Hey, now. What this? Muscles? Sleek muscles? I have calves? What?! I’ve never had calves. Hey, there pretty lady. You’ve got some nice arms. You don’t look so bad under that beet-red face, wild hair and glistening skin, gasping for air.

You look…Shredded. Maybe Jillian isn’t so bad after all…

Weekend Wonders

We had a pretty nice family weekend. We took an excursion to our special family place: the zoo. It’s amazing how away from reality we feel. It’s really nice. Even though there are hundreds of other people there, hundreds of strollers and wagons, and shrieking children, we feel alone. In a good way. I will really miss this zoo when we leave.

Samuel getting a daddy-ride!

I like to call this one: “The Ball of Misery.” This is Z having a minor meltdown.

It’s all good now! Z with his coveted orange sucker:) Enjoying lunch at the picnic tables. He said his favorite animals of the day were the giraffes and elephant.

A cute little elephant bush!

Samuel and Zakkai watching the butterflies. We went to the Butterfly exhibit, which was my favorite part of the zoo!

This little guy, the Piper something or other, was one of my favorites! He landed on everyone who had white clothes on and took a free ride:)

I loved this shot of this beauty sitting on a Sunflower! Beautiful! I think butterflies are one of my favorite of God’s creations.

This Zebra striped butterfly landed on my bookbag and I had Ben grab a shot before it flew away!

Some other moments from our weekend:

Samuel sayings: “Mommy, I haven’t watched a movie in two years!” or Thursday, same thing:)
“Remember when I got sick a year ago and needed Gatoree?” I guess a week seems like a year to a child!
“It’s been years and years and years since I had some candy.” See a theme here?
“I don’t want to be nuffing (nothing) when I grow up! I am not going to do anyfing!” All I can picture is George on Seinfeld…Oh dear!
Zakkai nonsense: “Mommy is a man!” Umm….
“Dat (hiccup) makes (sob) me (sigh) SAD!!”
“I don’t want to go to the zoo! I want to go to the nuseum!” Well! Zakkai has spoken.
“Dat’s masty, mommy.” One of my favorite Zakkai words! Oh you don’t speak Zakkai? Masty=Nasty. Nuseum=Museum. Said with much influction and spit and a charming grin:)
Have a great day!

The Candyland Man

An hour ago, I was standing in the kitchen preparing a picnic dinner, listening to the sounds of 3 of my favorite people in the world play Candyland. Zakkai, who won the first game, was pushed up to the table in his booster seat, continually turning around to give me updates. “Mohmmy (that’s how it sounds when he says it), Mohmmy, I playin’ a game!” or “Mohmmy, I get two yellows!” or “Mohmmy, you makin’ a picnic?”

Our original plan was to take a picnic outside but that was suddenly waylaid by a summer thunderstorm rolling in. So we put our brilliant parent-how-do-I-break-the-news-to the boys minds together and decided to have a picnic in the living room. We laid out our picnic blanket and set our simple picnic dinner down and lounged around enjoying each other’s company. There’s nothing like a picnic to make little mouths devour food. I swear I could’ve put down chopped broccoli and cauliflower and they would have gobbled it up! Okay, that was an outright lie. The day my children willingly inhale broccoli and cauliflower on a picnic is the day I….well, I’ll……I’ll eat it, too! Have I mentioned that I really don’t like cauliflower? No? Honestly I haven’t tried it in years but I have memories of choking it down as a child with large gulps of milk to disguise the taste. It never worked. Although I try that very same method with my children…Oh, right, I’m getting sidetracked.

Our leisurely picnic was followed by tickling in the daddy jungle tent (it must be a boy thing) while I cleaned up, relishing the delighted shrieking and laughter of my precious little boys. It was a night memories are made of.

boy Oh boy!

So I was sitting here minding my own business, checking a few blogs, watching “America’s Got Talent” when I heard it….talking coming from the boys room. I stopped my blog stalking in disbelief, hoping against all hope that it was a fluke. Maybe a sound coming from the hallway? A neighbor’s child? Oh darn, none of our closest neighbors have young kids. The tv? Nope, it was on mute. There it was again!

I blew out a sigh of frustration and crept slowly towards the white door. I listened carefully with my radar mommy-ear only to hear….Zakkai happily chattering. Not the mumbling of a boy deep in sleep, or calling out after a bad dream. Happily. Chatting. I opened the door to find that bright eyed (yes, bright eyed at 9pm) spunky little 2 year old sitting on the heater, peeking out the window. I stalked over with new energy bursting through my body and snatched him up and layed him down in bed. “Zakkai! What in the WORLD are you doing?!” I stage whispered. I felt around for the blankets to tuck him in and encountered a diaper. Where in the world did he get a diaper from? Unless….sure enough, my hand touched bare flesh and I realized that my son was naked from the waist down.

I straightened out the crumpled diaper and positioned it under his body, ready to wrap him up securely when i saw something. Extra clothes wrapped around his body. What was this? I pulled and twisted and found not one but two pairs of jammie shorts wrapped around his waist. In the dark, gleefully staying up waaaaayyy past his bedtime, this ornery toddler had decided to dress himself. He found an extra pair of shorts that I must’ve forgotten to put away and, in a charming 2 year old way, stuck his legs through one leg hole and pulled the shorts up around his waist. Both pairs of them. I fought back the grin as I redressed him and tucked him in. I admonished him to go to sleep and as I turned to leave, I noticed that the blankets covering the window were coming down, courtesy of my night wanderer. I hoisted myself up onto the heater to fix the crooked blankets only to step in a cold wet puddle. I froze, hardly daring to believe the thought that flashed through my mind. Please, oh, please tell me that wasn’t…pee. It was. Muttering under my breath I cleaned up the mess and my feet and crept back out of the darkened room, past my slumbering 4 year old. I closed the door and sat down to wait.

50 minutes later….I hear silence. Silence is golden.