Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Really?!

Oh my word. It's really been this long since I was here?! I feel a New Year's resolution coming oooonnnnn!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Thankful

Today I am thankful for the big, squishy, attitude-y, stinkerella, funny, loveable, huggable character that is our Maddie.


She's that little bit of spice that every life needs.


She's that whole lot of attitude that keeps us in check.


And she's the lovebug that can lift up our hearts without warning.

Not in a million years could I have ordered up a little girl so perfectly cut out for our little family.

I promise you I thank God for her every single day.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thankful

Oh. My. GOD. Almost 2 months since my last post!? Really?!?!? Wow. How did THAT happen? Hmmmmm....

Oh well.

I saw this little thang on Facebook that people are doing where they share something they're thankful for every day in November. I like it. I think I do it privately every day but I like the idea of writing it down and sharing it. Yes, November's almost halfway through but who cares. Maybe later I'll go back and do the days I've missed. But for today, I am grateful...

That I have friends that miss me when I'm not around. I think it's a gift.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Ana's 1st Day of Pre-School!

Our super big baby girl, so happy to finally go to school...


Yep, I let her get a character backpack. And so the relinquishing of control begins...


My baby girls...


Settling in all on her own...


And of course we can't forget the eco-chic snack bag :)...

She did amazingly well. Went right in like the independent little one that she is. Me? I lost it. Not until 5 minutes after Maddie and I left but I did. It wasn't pretty, people. I did the ugly cry. The noonecanunderstandmewhileI'mblubbering cry. Not my proudest moment but hey, I earned it.

There was a bonafide photo shoot happenin' here before we left so more pictures to come!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tough

Being a mom is tough.

Being surrounded by fits and "no"s and "she hit me"s and "mine"s is tough.

Being mistaken for a jungle gym and getting a finger in the eye or a foot to the cheek almost daily is tough.

Having to keep your cool when your two little wonders decide that doing the exact opposite of what you tell them would be hilarious is tough.

And hearing your two-year-old tell you to leave her alone for the first time is really, really tough.

And then your 3-year-old writes her name all by herself for the first time.

And your 2-year-old goes on the potty for the first time.

And you get to lay in bed with your two little girls reading story after story while they hold hands and the 3-year-old rubs your head and whispers "I'm the happiest girl in the world, Mommy."

Then it becomes a whole lot of easy and you wonder what you were ever complaining about.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

DIY Day - Our Kitchen Island!

I've been busy! I know I keep promising updates but really, I really have been busy making this house of our a home we're beginning to totally *heart*. It's comin', it's comin'!

BUT for now...here's a DIY for DIY Day at A Soft Place to Land!

DIY Day @ ASPTL

Before...
ItalicAfter...

I painted it red, added a butcher block top, some corbels (I think that's what those are called, right??), a hook for a towel, and some beadboard to go with the "new" cabinets.

I bought the island from World Market for $120 because it was the last one (and the display). I bought the butcher block top from Ikea for $89. The paint was $8, and the corbels were $3 a piece. The beadboard was left over from the kitchen reno so the total for my new island.........$223. A little pricey for my frugal tastes but it's the PERFECT size for our kitchen and will serve it's purpose of housing some little cookie-bakin' hands well :).

Chit Chattin' with Ana

As I'm putting her to bed tonight Ana puts her sweet little hands on my face...

Ana: Oh Mommy, you're such a sweet girl to me. I think I'll keep you.

Heart. Melting. And then it continues...

Ana: Mommy, should we keep Daddy too?

Mama: I think so.

Ana: And Maddie? I think we'll keep her too.

Mama: Ok, baby.

Ana: Mommy, are you going to keep me?

Mama: I'm going to keep you forever.

I LOVE this kid.

Chit Chattin' with Ana

RIGHT after having a snack...

Ana: Mommy, can I have a snack?

Mama: No. You just had one.

Ana: But I'm hungry. Can I please have another one?

Mama: No.

Ana: Whyyyyyyyyyy?????

Mama: Because you can't just keep eating snacks all day long.

Ana: Why can't I eat snacks all day long?

Mama: Because if you eat constantly you'll get chubby.

Ana: But Mommy, I want to be chubby, just like you.

Oh. Boy.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Details, Details, Details!

Oh my gosh! You guys like it! You really, really LIKE it!!! Ok, I'm not usually an all "bring on the compliments and keep 'em coming" kinda girl. But I worked so hard on this kitchen that I have to admit reading you comments has me giddy.

Ok, enough about me :). On to the details! I know there are a lot of tutorials out there on painting cabinets (where do you think I learned!?) so I won't go into that...unless you want me to, then totally!

To be honest, I used to H.A.T.E. white kitchens. Seriously. Whenever I saw white cabinets I would wonder if the people didn't have a choice. Then I took up reading decorating blogs and was bombarded (you know what I'm talking about!) with images of white kitchens and I FELL IN LOVE. So every morning I'd come down stairs and cringe at my dark cabinets, cursing them for being so blah. I know it wasn't their fault. After all, I PICKED them just 2.5 short years ago. But it was time for change. So after a month of trying to convince the Mr. and showing him ENDLESS pictures of gorgeous white kitchens he finally gave the green light.

First thing on the agenda, choose a paint color. I didn't want bright white so I went with Bear's Powdered Snow. Now that it's done I honestly think I could've stood to go even a little creamier but I'm happy.

Then came the little details because it's ALL about the details.

I put beadboard on the sides on the cabinets to make them look more finished.

I thought it would add some architechtural intrest to add height to one of the cabinets. The one over the microwave seemed to make the most sense. And I was right. This is one of my favorite parts! No more straight line. It looks grander, if just a little, don't ya think?

Then we added the crown...

My $25 Kohler sink and $100 super fabulous faucet...

My totally redone island (details of which I'm saving for a DIY partay!)...

Then there was the little detail of cutting out two of the door panels and replacing them with glass. This did force me to paint the inside of the cabinets which was kind of a drag but I threw some beadboard in there and whalla!


And mayhaps my very favorite detail...the little "feet" on the bottom of each cabinet. I painted the toe kicks a dark color to kinda "hide" them. I luuurve this!!! I don't know how I ever lived without these before. I feel like these little "feet" take the cabinets from "eh" to totally charming.

Thanks so much again for stopping by and leaving me those super awesome comments!!! They're totally encouraging and mean a TON.

Next up, pics and details from my "brand new" living room!

xoxo

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I *Heart* My Kitchen (NOW!)

DIY Day @ ASPTL

*Edited to include the Metamorphosis Monday button!



Ok, so I know I owe this little 'ol blog quite a few updates. And they're coming. Soon. But I HAVE to jump this one straight to the top of that list.

About two months ago, I found this girl. She's awesome. I'm a little embarrassed to say I have a total blog crush. The day I found her blog I literally spent HOURS looking through the entire thing. I mean, clearly she has great taste. But it wasn't even just that that had me. It's the ridiculous fact that she does all of this stuff herself. Her. SELF! That night my brain started twirling with idea after idea for this little house of ours. All of the things I had always loved but thought I could never afford suddenly became possible.

So I did it. I headed out and bought myself a miterbox and saw. Uh, helllllo, I had never even used a saw before. Ever. And what I did with it ended up being a living room I never thought I'd have. And yes, that would be the perfect opening for a post full of pictures of said living room. BUT after finishing said living room, I apparently earned some street cred from the man of the house and wouldn't ya know it he agreed to let me move on to the kitchen and paint our cabinets! Holler! I jumped right on that and, after psyching myself out a few times, with bated breath, I took the plunge.

And here's what happened:

Before...

and After...

Details to come!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Updates, Updates, Hooray!!

Ok, so I'm not really updating JUST yet but this is the prelude to the updates ;).

'Member my Shred? I never finished. I know. I'm a loser. I got so close and gave up. Well, not so much gave up but more quit. Whatever. What really matters though it that I hit my goal! Yahoooo! More on this later (today...this week...just later).

'Member my chair? That little chair has led to some very BIG changes around this little ol' shack of ours. Cannot WAIT to blog about it!!! Complete with pictures. My whole decorating life has taken a total turn for the better in the last month thanks to some totally amazing chicks I found here on the ol' blogosphere. More on this later too!

And 'member my list??? Well, this little procrastinator-raider has been bizzzz-eeeee! Just WAIT 'til you hear how much I've gotten done. I'd love to say the list has gotten shorter but with each item/project I mark off another one seems to pop up in it's place! I'm out of control. No, really. I'm lacking total control in protecting myself (and my hubby) from the insane amount of ideas running around the noggin.

Soooo, this is all I have time for right now. Ballet class, a run to Home Depot, and a birthday party await us! But don't fret. I WILL be back!!!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Ana Ballerina


I have been waiting for as long as I can remember for the day that I would put a tutu on my little girl and take her to a dance class. Honestly, I've been waiting forever.

So when I got a phone call last Monday letting me know that Ana had been moved from the waiting list for a ballet class to being in the class I was in Heeeaaaavennnnnn! I ran out for a leotard and the stinkin' cutest size 6 ballet slippers I'd ever seen.

I made my way home with outfit in tow and daydreamt of my little Ana and the pirouettes she was sure to master on her very first day. The moment she saw them she immediately put them on. And wore them the rest of the night. And slept in them. I loved it.

In the morning I was met by a very eager 3 year old with slippers in hand asking if it was time for her ballet class yet. AWE-SOME! But wait. Too good to be true, right? Yeah, totally what I thought. So I managed to brace myself for her to completely loathe ballet and never want to put a tutu on again.

Uh, WRONG! She LOVED IT!!!! She was smitten immediately and jumped right in and listened to the teacher's instructions and didn't look for me once and made friends and spoke up and made me cry. Yes, sir. I was the mom I always knew I would be. Cried through the entire 30 minutes. It's not like I was a blubbering mess or anything. I managed to hold it together enough to not get myself kicked out but still, these eyes were-a-cryin'. I cried cuz she seemed so grown up. I cried because she was so independent. And I cried because I saw how happy it made her.

I'm totally aware that this could be short lived, much like her soccer career, but whether it lasts for 2 weeks or 30 years I will cherish every second of it.


I've been waiting for this.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Chit Chattin' with Maddie

As I sang and sang and sang...

Maddie: "Nuff, Mommy! Enough!"

:(

Monday, June 15, 2009

A Perfect Day

All four of us together.

Shopping outside.

Having lunch outside.

Holding hands.

Listening to the girls talk to each other.

Laughing while listening to them crack each other up.

Watching the sheer joy in the girls' face as they splashed in the water.

For the first time in years talking about our dreams for the future.

It was a perfect day.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Chit Chattin' with Ana...and Maddie

Waiting for the girls to clean up their toys so we can go for a walk...

Mama: "Girls, clean up your toys now or we're not going for a walk. I mean it!"

Ana: "OK, Moooom. You just go get the stroller ready and we'll clean this up. OK? OKKK????

How old is this kid anyway???


After asking Maddie to bring me something she (finally) brings it...

Mama: "Thank you, baby."

Maddie: "Noooooo problem!"

hehehehehehehehe....

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Change

I can give you a list about a mile long of things I can't stand about being in my 30's. No really, I have an actual running list: crows feet, flabby (fill in the blank), an insatiable need for sleep. It goes on and on. But do you know what I love about being in my 30's? Oh so much more than I could've imagined.

I love how much life has been teaching me about myself. I love that I can say I'm becoming the person I want to be. The path seems clearer than ever before and I love that. I'm feeling a calm and confidence about doing what I want to do, what I think is best for me and my family, and it feels good....well, most of the time.

Most of the time I feel this way.

Lately? Notsomuch.

I sit here and I want to cry as I type. I want to cry because I've spent so much of my time lately being so sad. And frustrated. And stressed over the unnecessary. I hate that I've once again let my life steer off course, surrounding myself with negativity and anxiety. Allowing other people to determine how I feel. Feeling more of an obligation to them than to myself. And it needs to stop.

So I'm makin' some changes.

I feel like I grew up this insecure, try-to-make-everyone-else-happy-first, don't-really-deserve-the-best girl. Don't get me wrong, my bag spills over with selfish moments. I've done more stupid things than there is time but overall it's always been about everyone else. It's always been about how I let everyone else make me feel. I recognized years ago the causes for so many of my actions and that helped me. It helped me better understand myself and lead me in the right direction to becoming the person I want to be. I guess that's normal though. It's normal not to really know who you are when you're younger and make a million stupid mistakes, right? Isn't that what growing up is about?

I guess.

I've always said that out of rough childhoods emerge two types of people: those that choose to continue on the same path, reasoning it's "all they've ever known", and those that, somewhere along the way, determine to change their course. I'm proud to say I'm the latter. I don't know when exactly it happened but a long time ago I decided my life was going to be different. I decided I didn't want to feel lonely, insecure, and unworthy anymore. It's been tough, and I've had setbacks, but I'm a million miles from where I came and that makes me proud. I've finally come to understand that this is not a road that will ever end but instead a journey that will take me through this life of mine. And these setbacks? Well, they're all par for the course, you see. But I'm learning that they don't have to define my life. That they won't define my life.

I want to let go of the anxiety I feel when I think someone's upset with me. I want to abandon the need to be the one that brushes things under the rug for the sake of keeping things comfortable. I want to fill my life with it's small miracles and I want to taste every moment it brings. My sweet girls deserve this. They deserve a mom that teaches them to live this very way.

So I'm done with the unnecessary. I'm done thinking that how other people act toward/around me is always a reflection on me. I'm not perfect. I'm not the perfect friend, the perfect sister, the perfect niece, or the perfect daughter. I don't send thank you cards when I should or always remember what's going on in someone else's life every moment. I can't always make time to do everything someone else wants me to do or grin and bear things that bother me. But I do my best and I always, always mean well.

I've been blessed with a handful of people that think that's more than enough and these are the people that deserve me, that deserve my time. So I'll spend my time with them because they make my life better not harder. I'll spend my time doing things I love to do, like writing and working on our house and making snow cones, and things that will make my girls' life fuller, like exploring new places and running around outside and eating those snow cones. I'm getting there. I'm on my way. And for the first time in these 32 years of mine I'm seeing my life for what it is, what it should have been all along.

Mine.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Happy 2nd Birthday, Little Miss Maddie

Oh my sweet girl.

You're two now and I don't even know where to start. In three words, you are, LARGER THAN LIFE. Everything about you is larger than life - your temper, your personality, your sense of humor, your love of everything. You throw the biggest fit over the tiniest things and you get the most excited over the simplest joys. I love that about you so. much.

I know you're mine, and this may sound biased, but I think you're the funniest 2-year-old I've ever known. You have a character that blows our minds every single day. You're mean to your sister but she's the first one you ask for every morning. You absolutely refuse to hold Mommy's hand when you walk but I can't get through making dinner without you tugging at my legs begging to be held. You love Daddy like nothing I've ever seen and scream in delight at the sight of him at the end of each day.

You're two and know exactly what you want. You push my buttons like no other 30-lb chunk of love ever has and you swell my heart even more. I love you, sweet girl. I love you like you'll never know...well, until you have a perfect little girl of your own. It's been a wild, crazy, and full two years. Thank you, baby, for choosing me to be your mom. Thank you for letting me hold your hand (figuratively of course :)) through these past two years. You're a gift to me and to our little family, Petunia, and I could never imagine our life without you.

Happy 2nd Birthday, Madelyn Grace. I love you.

xoxo,
Mama

Sunday, May 17, 2009

I'm still alive...

Ugh. Back to my bad blogging ways.

I'll be back with tons of updates! Shredding and a LOT going on around this old house!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Days 17, 18, 19,20, 21, 22, and 23

Bad news...

Days 17 & 18 done, easily and with tons of energy. Then the weekend came. Bad news.

Went out Friday night for a birthday celebration that ended up being way too fun - like, getting-home-at-3am fun. Combine that with being woken up at 7am on Saturday morning by the loves of my life that I wouldn't trade for anything not even a little extra sleep (I swear I'm being sincere) and I was left with absolutely no motivation or energy to Shred. Enter Saturday night and another get-together at Dana's that brought us home way too late. Still not recovered from Friday, I was pretty much dead to the world. Oh yeah, I almost forgot, I decided to take on a pretty big re-decorating project on Sunday too, you know, with all that extra energy.

So no Shredding alllllll weekend. I'm ashamed. I thought I'd hit my second wind but truth be told, I'M BORED!!!!!!!!! I know, I'm a loser. It's only 30 days - the same amount of days that flies by when I'm not working out. The same amount of days that flies by when I'm suckin' up that pizza and ice cream.

Days 21 through 23 have been done though - barely. So I don't know if anyone's reading this or anything but I NEED MOTIVATION! Even if you can't give it to me do ya think you can tell me where I can find it????

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Preschool

I registered Ana for preschool today.

And I can't really write any more about it cuz, at least right now, it's purty tough to swallow.

Chit Chattin' with Maddie

I sat Maddie in her carseat and as I was going to put Ana in hers I sat her on Maddie's lap for a second (you know, cuz I'm soooo funny)...

Maddie: "Move it, Ana! Move it!!!"

Yep, sounds about right. All Maddie.

Chit Chattin' with Ana

I'm in the living room listening to Ana and Maddie playing together in the family room and then Ana walks in...

Ana: "Mommy....I'm just so frustrated."
Mama: "You're frustrated? Why?"
Ana: "Becaauuuuse, Maddie NEVER shares! EVER!!!"

Well, at least she's good at expressing her feelings :).

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Days 15 and 16

Oh my!!! The monumental half-way point and I didn't even write about it. Oh well! Moving on....

Yes, sireeee (or ma'ameeee) I finished my 15th day yesterday. Oh helllllzzzz yeah I did! 15 days STRAIGHT mah homeys (not really sure why I'm all gangsta now but I'm kinda feelin' it). Tried Level 3. Holy toughness. Again, pretty though, but not any tougher than Day 1 at Level 1 so I'm confident I'll be kickin' Level 3's butt by Day 30.

And today. Ahhh, today. Today, also monumental (is monumental too strong a word? mayhaps?), marked the beginning of the 2nd half, the LAST half, of my 30 Day Shred-a-thon. I've decided to switch it up every day and do a different level. Today I did Level 1 again and ROCK IT. Seriously. No joke. I smoked Jillian. No breaks at. all. It was still tough but I did it and it felt oh so good.

I don't know what's going on but I'm feeling pretty re-energized right now. And it feels goooood. I'm going on 5 hours of sleep (a HUGE deprivation for atleast8hoursanight me) and being pretty irritated by someone earlier and I feel grrrrreat! I think I'm back. I was worried for a minute but this is good. I see the end. It's you and me, Ania! It's you and me :).

Monday, April 20, 2009

Days 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

Duh-uh-uh-uh-uhne!!!!

Ok, so I haven't been on here in days and I gotta say it's getting tough. Not the work out, that's been tough all along. The monotony of it. The same thing every. single. day. Given I can often have the attention span of a small peanut, this is proving to be the toughest part. So tomorrow I'll move onto Level 3. Not because I'm just that awesome but because if I don't mix it up I just may fail.

'Til tomorrow!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Day 9

I just finished my 9th straight day of the Shred. I'm really tired. It's almost 11pm. We had some friends over tonight so I had some drinks. I need to study for a big test I have on Friday. I want to sleep.

But I did do it. Exhale.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Chit Chattin' with Maddie: the Debut

Is it really happening? Can I really start publishing "Chit Chattin' with Maddie" posts???? It can't be. My baby can't be getting this big!

Oh but she is. And this is her first...sigh (you know, a sad but proud and happy but reluctant-to-let-go kind of sigh).

While trying to draw on the wall with an unsharpened pencil...

Mama: "Maddie, what are you doing?"

Maddie: "Na-ting, Mama. Na-ting."

Mama: "We only color on paper, remember?"

Maddie: "No, Mama, no 'member."

Oh boy.

Days 7 & 8

Day 7 - done! BUT...I gotta tell ya I'm getting a little bored. I know it's only 22 minutes start to finish so it's over before I know it but it's me, the girl with an attention span the size of a peanut. It's time to move on...

So ah diiiiid!

Day 8 done! AND I moved right on up to Level 2! OhyesIdid!!!! And I survived to write about it. And it really wasn't much tougher than Level 1 was on that very first day. And I'm kinda hoping I'm sore in the morning cuz I kinda miss that feeling. And I think this Ab workout is going to be waaaay more effective. And I feel shockingly stronger already. And I totally did the pushups on. my. TOES! And I'm kinda sorta pretty proud of myself for actually doing this and sticking to it.

8 days down. 22 days to go.

Yeah, I'm cool ;P.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Chit Chattin' with Ana: Easter Edition

After coming home from MiNell's thinking Easter was over and finding another surprise from the Easter Bunny on her bed...

Ana: "Oh, Mommy!!! The Easter Bunny came again! He came again! And he brought me another surprise!!! Let's go look in your bed, Maddie! Let's gooooooo!!!!"

So she runs, baby sister in hand, to find Maddie's Dora surprise in her room.

Ana: "Mommy, I'm really REALLY happy. Thank you so much for everything. I'm just SO happy."

I. love. her.

Days 5 & 6

Days 5 & 6 DONE! Yep, in the middle of working and shopping and Easter I actually did it. This is huge for me.

Not sore but it's still tough. I can TOTALLY see Level 2 in my future. I WILL rock this. I WILL. I WILL!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Day 4

I'm so excited! My 30 Day Shredders Movement recruited a whole 3 members! PLUS me!!! Woot woot! Hey, that's plenty if you ask me :).

So I'm wracking my brain looking for a good way to measure our (imminent) successes at the end of the 30 days. One girl won't reveal her weight, one won't take pictures, and one wants to share even the unnecessary (you know who you are!) :). Soooo, how's this? We set our personal goals and document them for, well, documentation's sake. So here's my goal:

To lose 5 lbs, AT LEAST 2 inches from my belly and thighs, and to tighten up my baby belly. Not sure how realistic the 2 inches is cuz I have no clue about all that but it sounds good so why not!

Now back to my regularly scheduled shredding...

Day 4 done!!!

Awesome. I'm feeling A.W.E.S.O.M.E. Like I-wanna-take-an-after-picture-already awesome. BUT, of course I know it'll look exactly the same so I won't.

I wasn't sore almost at all today so somehow that tricked my mind into thinking the workout would be easier. Uh, nuh-uh. Still tough, my friends. Still tough. But I can feel myself getting stronger. And I can actually see myself maybe even moving up to Level 2. Oh yeah, I said it. I didn't say when. I didn't say it wouldn't be until Day 28. I just said I can see it happening.

This is encouraging, ladies!!! The worst will be behind us SOOOOOONNNNN!!!!

Now get to writin' your goals! Can't wait to read 'em!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Day 3

Day 3 DONE!!!

And unlike the last 2 days, those exclamation points are not put there to emphasize the horrific pain. Dare I say I ACTUALLY THINK I MAY PERHAPS SLIGHTLY FEEL STRONGER?!?!?! Ooooh yeah. Watch yourself Jillian, I'm comin' out!

Aaaand, turns out I'm not alone. Seems a little trend has been started and 2 friends have already started with one (hopefully!) starting as I type. So I'm linking to this post of my Facebook in hopes of recruiting more. 30 Day Shredders UNITE!!! It's 30 days and, like Ania says, it's only 20 minutes. Sounds doable but with the help of some determined friends to keep my rear in check I now KNOW I will do it!

So won't you join us? Come on, Kristie! Only $14.98 at Target! So if we can make this a 30 Day team effort I think we should posts some stats! Starting weights maybe? "Before" pictures? Daily updates? Whatever! But I'm not posting jack until someone says they'll do it with me. If you wanna, just put it in the comments!

Ok! Let's do it to it, people!!!

Wow. I've never tried to start a movement before. Kinda liberating :).

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Day 2

Day 2 down! 28 to go!

Ok, so I woke up this morning and was pleasantly surprised at the ease I felt in peeling myself from my bed. I felt it but I was ok, I was gooood. The girls got up a little bit earlier than usual so we ate breakfast and decided to get to shreddin'.

Though I'd ususally wait until the girls are asleep to work out I figured I'd try it with them there because I was THAT excited to go on to Day 2 (seriously). (I'm going to go ahead and gush for a sec about how stinkin' cute and caring these girls of mine were, k? K.) As I huffed and puffed, sweated and cursed, Ana and Maddie were by my side with their "matter, Mama?" and "it's ok, Mommy, I'm going to take care of you" as I winced in pain and practically cried out for my own mommy. Ana even rubbed my leg during the lat rows. Yeah I realize this may have traumatized these poor girls but hey, Jillian shows no mercy for anyone! And considering I really could've used that encouragement right then I just let them be.

Within minutes of finishing the workout I was in massive out-of-shape-fat-girl pain. And now, 14 hours later, still in massive out-of-shape-fat-girl pain. To be fair, I'm not in constant pain. Like right now. As I lay here perfectly still. I feel nothing. Nothing at all. So long as I don't move or cough or breathe too deeply I feel nothing at all.

So, Day 2 down. On to tomorrow!

My Super Good Deal

I *heart* this chair. I heart it. I do. The style of it, the accents, the way it only cost me like 20 bucks. Seriously. Maybe not exactly 20 but it didn't cost me much more than that at all. I KNOW!

My List

I know, 3 posts in less than 12 hours. CA-RAZY!

Anyway, I've got it. After over a year of falling into a rut and not having the resources or creativity to do anything about it, it's back. The decorating itch. And it needs some scratchin'.

I'm suddenly overwhelmed with ideas! Ideas for the girls' rooms, ideas for the kitchen, even ideas for the garage. I know! So the creativity's back. But the resources? Notsomuch. So I've decided to make a list. A list of the stuff I want to do to make our house feel more like a home because, quite frankly, it's about darn time the way it looks matched the way it feels. So here it is (not the complete list but more than enough to get me started):

Kitchen
  1. Build an island. I want it to have a wood top and decorative legs. Pretty simple, eh? But I can't find one. Actually, I can't find one the perfect size for the perfect price, like, almost free :).
  2. Remove my wall decal. Love the words, can't stand the thing behind it. Not sure what I was thinking.
  3. Get new countertops. One of the pricier to-dos so hopefully I can find a mama-worthy deal (fingers crossed!).
  4. Get wood blinds for the door.
  5. Add a wreath to the back door.
  6. Fix the screen doorknob (ahem, if only my dear husband read this).
  7. Get a new sink and faucet.
Living/Dining Room
  1. (Maybe) add wainscoting to the walls. Haven't decided yet.
  2. Get new, more formal dining chairs to go better with my new favorite chair but ONLY if I can manage to sell mine.
  3. Get place settings for the dining table.
  4. Make a plates display on the dining area wall.
  5. Restain my supercute new chair.
  6. Get coffee and side tables (or something that will serve their purpose).
  7. Get a "dresser" that will serve as a mini buffet.
Family Room
  1. Paint the fireplace wall.
  2. Redo vamp the fireplace and paint/stain it.
  3. Change our blinds and add curtains.
  4. Put up shelves.
  5. Patch up holes.
  6. Freshen up pictures
Ok, I think I should stop here for now. I need a starting point and I think this is plenty. Now I just need to get started! Hmmmm....but where????

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Day 1

About a week or so ago I learned of a Jillian Michaels DVD that promises to reshape and "shred" your body in just 30 days. For only 20 minutes. Results in a month? Only 20 minutes of work? Sold!

Uuuuhhhhh...that's 30 days STRAIGHT. And that's 20 minutes of CONSTANT MOVEMENT. With JILLIAN MICHAELS. H O L Y. C R A P.

I ain't gonna lie. If, at this point, you're wondering how it went given my subtlety, here's a hint. I thought I might actually die. Literally. I had visions of Anthony coming home to find me in a workout coma. My legs were shaking, people. My arms felt like they might fall off if I kept going. I get it, I'm out of shape but sweet Jesus! it's not like I sit on the couch and eat garlic texas toast with cheese on it (uh, yum!) all day long. I AM mobile!

Aaaanyhoo, the positive is that I DID IT! And I'M DOING IT FOR THE 30 DAYS! Oh, that's right. I'm in this to win this! I took my measurements and (get this!) pictures. Hooo yeah. And heeeeck no, they're not getting put on here...unless I really do get totally hot and shredded in 30 days. Then I might just post them just so I can throw some garlic bread (what's my deal??) at them while I point and laugh!

Ok, point is/was.....day 1, DONE!

32

32 and a few weeks old.

OLD.

This last year has made me feel old. I've learned more in the last year than ever in my (adult) life - more about myself, more about people around me, more about life itself.

I became Mama to two toddlers.

I became a business owner.

I became a new friend, and then lost those same friends.

I became consumed with my own life and fell short to the most honest and true friends I'll ever have.

I became uncertain of so much and spent a great deal of time worrying about the future.

I let the darkness of that worry chip away at my marriage.

I started to become someone I never wanted to be.

I learned what it felt like to do without.

I still found happiness in every single day through the eyes, the smiles, the hugs of my girls.

I took back what was rightfully mine, became a true business owner, and saw our potential for the very first time.

I slowly but surely got rid of the unnecessary, the poisonous, and became that much less naive.

I realized how lucky I am to have been chosen by my friends and the blessing it is to have that kind of security.

I learned that it's in my control to be the person I want to be which is so much better than the one I had been.

I learned just how much a mother will do for her daughter.

I learned that no matter what we go through, no matter what's said, and no matter how dark it gets, he's the one - he will always be the one and I thank God for him.

I'm another year older for sure. But for all that's happened I'm stronger...I'm more knowing...and I'm going to be just fine.

Welcome 32.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Chit Chattin' with Ana

Looking up at the sky...

Ana: I wish I could bring the sky down so I can touch it.

Nana: You will touch the sky one day, baby. I promise.

I *heart* 3-year-olds...well, my 3-year-old.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Chit Chattin' with Ana

After getting home from a Valentine's party and Ana was taking off her coat and shoes...

Ana: "That sure was fun."
Mama: "What, honey?"
Ana: "That sure was a lot of fun we had today at that party, Mommy."

One morning as we're talking about Daddy and I asked her if she wanted me to call him...

Ana: "No. Not right now."
Mama: "Are you sure?"
Ana: "Yeah, let's not bother him right now. He's pretty nervous so I'll just wait until later to talk to him."

Three, my friends. She's THREE.

Oh Maddie...

You're counting to 7 unassisted, 11 with help. You count to 4 in Spanish, 9 with help. You know your colors and most of your shapes. And you talk, talk, talk. Some of our favorites are:

"Help me, Mama!" when you want up, down, out, in, whatever.
"Bless you, Mama."
"Here!" when you hand things to us.
"Doing, Dada?" when you want to know what he's doing.
"Matter, Mama?" if you think I'm upset.
"Here I am!" when I call you.
"Wait!!!!" of "Para!!!" if I walk away.
"Miiiissed you!"
"I yuv you" - all. the. time.
"Morning, Mama."
"Coming, Ana!" when you're in your crib and you hear Ana.

I love you more every single day.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Happy 18 months (plus 2)

Madelyn Grace,

This is your 18 month letter.

You're 20 months and 8 days old today.

This has seemed to be the theme of our entire life together.

One day you're 18 months old and the next it's 2 months later. One day I'm holding you for the very first time and the next your running up to me screaming "I yuv you!" You're moving and growing at the speed of light and I'm trying as hard as I can to hold on and enjoy the ride because let me tell you, little girl, what a ride it has already been.

You are so much in one tiny, chubby-faced little package - so much attitude, so much character, so much sweetness.

You play hard - very hard. You throw your weight around like nobody's business and continuously remind everyone who's boss. You take things from your sister. Actually, you often don't even want something until Ana has it. You're stronger than you know and Mommy, Daddy, and Ana are usually the ones to pay the price for that. You love it when Daddy tackles you and see his time on the floor as an opportunity to tackle him back, usually when he's not expecting it. You don't do well with being told no and will instantly drop your head, stick out those lips, and burrow your little brows. You love to say no and will repeatedly say "down!" while someone holds you until they oblige. In fact, Auntie Dana still thinks that's the only word you can say. HA!

It's true that you are a force to be reckoned with, my girl, but even as hard as you play, you love even harder. You're like a walking lovebug. You can't see me kiss Ana without puckering up for your own. You wake up yelling for your sister and start your day with a big hug for her each morning. You love it when I kiss your hands, your feet, your cheeks, your lips. You spontaneously burst into fits of hugs and kisses throughout each day. You say please, thank you, welcome, and bless you without being asked. You love to be surrounded by everyone you love, you always have. When Daddy walks into the garage it's "where Daddy?". When I go into the other room I return the the sweetest "Mommyyyyyyy!!!!!" in the world. I often wonder how that enoromous heart fits in your little 31 inch body.

You count to 3. You LOVE to dance. You've got moves we've never seen on a 1-year-old. You love music. You think you're hilarious. You know the first 2 parts of a knock-knock joke and are working on the punchline. You don't sit down for a full book but love to bring them to us to start them. You understand EVERYTHING. You try to sing "Twinkle, Twinkle" and get a lot of the words right. You love your sister and think she's the funniest person in your life. You call your bear your "baby". You need your "sock on" first thing in the morning. You'll eat pretty much anything. You are so cuddly. You go nonstop. You have crazy hair that can look perfect one day and untamable the next. You're belly needs to wear a 2T but your little legs still need 18 months. You've scared me to no end. I lost track of the words you can say months ago. You use 3-word, and now 4-word sentences. You are dramatic. You are our sunshine.

You are amazing.

And you have filled up my life.

Happy 18 months (plus 2), sweet girl. Mama loves you.

XOXO

You at 18 months.

You now with your sister and your crazy hair :).

Thursday, January 29, 2009

So big

"Let me down, NOW!!!" - Maddie's first four word sentence. And totally Maddie-worthy, if I may say so myself :).

Monday, January 19, 2009

Payback

Today at lunch my mom took yet another three opportunities to point out YET AGAIN that what goes around, comes around.

See, ever since our vivacious, super stubborn, high-spirited, animated Miss Maddie came into our lives my mom has just loved to remind me that payback is a bitch (or in her words, "a b-b"). For every time Maddie throws a fit, and with it whatever is in her hand, my mom has some old Spanish saying to throw at me. And with each pout of the lips and throw to the floor Maddie puts out, my mom has a "life lesson" to add - a reminder that this is my payback.

Is it?

Is it "payback" to have a little girl that FILLS UP OUR LIVES? That makes us LAUGH UNTIL OUR BELLIES HURT AND SOMETHING COMES OUT OUR NOSE? Is having a baby that LIGHTS UP A ROOM WITH HER INFECTIOUS LAUGH AND GORGEOUS EYES what's "coming around"? Am I supposed to be feeling some kind of punishment by having a daughter that WON'T LET ANYONE MESS WITH HER? That LAUGHS SO HARD SHE FALLS DOWN? And that KEEPS US ON OUR TOES?

Is this payback? Well, if it is, then I invite you just keep bringing it on, sweet payback because here I am. Arms wide open.

Yep, she's this tough...

And this unbelievably sweet.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Totally Random

I rarely play along with bloggy things. Not because I don't like them, I do. I just don't have that much commitment in me. But this one from over here is so simple and kinda fun that I think I'll just give it a try. Plus, it keeps this ol' blog alive when I can't find the time to sit and write anything substantial. Just don't go getting too excited though. This could be the last...or it could not.

Anyway, this is the 8th picture in my January 2009 folder - Ana and Miss Maddie opening up their big Mickey and Minnie from Auntie Carie, Uncle Dan, and Baby Wyatt. They ended up switching because Maddie LOVES "Mickey!!!" and Ana's much more a Minnie kinda gal.