Friday, July 31, 2009

summer fun...#4, I believe...trip to the zoo

We all enjoyed a trip to the zoo where we met up with some friends. The kids all bonded instantly and everyone kept their eyes out for everyone else's little ones. Sam was looking forward to seeing the bison and they were unfortunately at the end of the route we took. So I endured "can we move on?" about 100 dozen times that afternoon...but other than that we had a wonderful time.

Sam and Teresa are pointing at...uuummmm, I have no clue now...and Katie and my friend Jessica's little guy A are cozying up to get a good look at....whatever it is.

Baby Giraffe Kenya

Katie and wouldn't know they just met.

A: I think if I slide this bolt this way it should open right up.

T: might need to jimmy it to the left a little more.

Okay, they didn't really discuss the way to open that lock but look at them! You know that's what they were thinking.

Teresa, Katie and J....looking at that same aquatic creature (I'm thinking it was the sea lions).

Teresa trying to find some shade

C and Sam studying the map to see if they can figure out a faster way to get to the goddamn American bison

Go ahead Katie...but just your fingers!

This picture cracks me up. So much for just her fingers. I love Jessica's expression. I think she's laughing at Katie getting all wet but the joke's on her because look behind her...A is walking over and he is DRENCHED.

Teresa holding hands with her new love J. She couldn't resist him and that's probably because he is the happiest little guy EVER.

The BISON...Finally!

While the Mom's would have loved to end the trip with a little cocktail or two, we ended up clicking our paper cups of Del's Lemonade and Watermelon slushes to toast a fabulous visit to the zoo. Cheers!

Monday, July 27, 2009

summer fun #3...making it to the big leagues (sort of)

We packed up and headed out to a Paw Sox game with all the cousins. It was nonstop exploring (thank you Bobby and Lisa for taking the kids on endless loops around the ballpark) and copious amounts of junkfood. I want to think it was the excitement that kept them up until after 10 pm but I think it was the result of all that sugar they consumed. It may not be the Major Leagues but as far as the kids were concerned, it was.

Friday, July 17, 2009

summer fun moment #2...PLAY BALL!!!

We are lucky enough to live close to a town that is home to one of Cape Cod Baseball Leagues teams. I remember when I was a kid one of the big thrills of summer was to walk from our house to the field where the games were held. The mumbled echoes of the announcer calling out the names of the players and the colleges they played for let us know the game had started and a group of us would head to the field, my brothers with their gloves in hand in case a fly ball came their way. We wiled away many a summer evening at the games and I don't think I ever really watched one too closely. I went just for the thrill of being out at night on my own. The local team holds a baseball camp for kids and I signed Sam and Teresa up for a couple weeks.

One Friday the interns came around and took the kids names down. They were having a drawing and the winner would get to yell "Play ball!" to start the next homegame. Guess whose name was drawn? Sam was the lucky winner and when the intern found out his sister was in camp as well, she said Teresa could join him.

We showed up at the game early. Sam and Teresa were very excited for their moment of glory. At the last minute, the intern asked Katie if she wanted to join her siblings on the field and Katie eagerly nodded yes. So, all three of the kids marched onto the field after the first pitch was thrown out and hollered "PLAY BALL!" at the top of their lungs into the microphone. They felt like mini celebraties. The rest of the night they scootered around the park, ate popcorn and Italian ices and chased foul balls. We left near the end of the 8th inning. Not because they wanted to but because all the grownups were cold and tired. I think the kids could have stayed there all night.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

on the beach

Remember a few months back I mentioned I had made the resolution to lose some weight? I started back in September. I was determined to lose 10 pounds by June. I know, I'm so ambitious. Well, apparently, I'm a bit too ambitious. My scale informed me at the beginning of June that after nine months of kinda sorta watching what I eat and exercising at least three or four times a week I had lost a grand total of EIGHT, are you freaking kidding me!, pounds. Seriously????

I just wanted to lose that little extra jiggle around my middle and it really should not be that hard. But apparently it is. At least for me. I have been blessed with being tall and thin for nearly all of my life. I have never had to diet. I can't claim any credit for my long's just genetic. But after three kids and no time to fit in anything one could consider exercise, those pesky ten to fifteen, okay 20 pounds, crept on and just were refusing to leave. I figured I was going to have to try a diet but was clueless as to where to begin. A few of my friends had started the South Beach diet. Now normally, I scoff at diets. I believe one should be able to eat without all kinds of rules and guidelines to remember. I am of the belief that if you use good judgement most of the time in regards to what you eat, you'll be fine. Well, that mindset wasn't really helping me shed those extra pounds, now was it?

So I sceptically decided to try the South Beach diet. And as God as my witness, I'm a true convert. It really worked. I started this diet June 11th. I have already lost ten pounds! I know that's not a huge amount of weight but, HELLO! it took me nine times that amount of time to lose just about the same amount of weight my way. My belly is flatter...I can actually see waist definition! My shoulders are skinnier. I never even knew my shoulders were chubby. Clothing I bought last summer, is now a wee bit baggy. Who knew making better decisions about what I put into my mouth could actually make such a difference. DUH! So, for now, I am staying on the beach. It's not always easy for me, but it's working. I could not be any happier.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I think they must be blind

My kids had a late night tonight. We went out to dinner and didn't get home until after eight. All the usual evening chores awaited me. Dishwasher, laundry, vacuuming, and the all consuming neverending putting away of the toys. I got the dishes started and vacuuming done while the kids watched a short movie. I got a load of dirty clothes in the washer but just didn't have the energy to tackle folding the mountain range of clothing in the baskets. And the toys...oh the toys. I hustled the kids up to bed and told them I'd be up in a bit to kiss them goodnight. I figured I'd kill two birds with one stone and pick up some of toys on my way up there. It really shouldn't be too bad because I asked the kids to pick up before they went to bed and they assured me they would.
I picked up a big basket to stow toys and books that weren't where they should be and started in the living room picking up bakugan cards and matchbox cars, fairy dolls and fuzzy dice (fuzzy dice?...I have no idea). I also found a birthday cake filled with small littlest pet shop accessories ( these things have to come with a billion teacups, dishes and toys?) And then there were the books...board books, chapter books and picture books...on top of and underneath the coffee table. I stashed the books in the appropriate bookshelves, parked the cars in the garage, tossed the dice into a basket of miscellaneous junk and made my way into the kitchen.

The damage was minimal in there. I did find a few more board books under the bookshelf and the table. I also found some Fisher Price little people and their pets.
The playdough toys were strewn all over the table and some leftover blobs of playdough.
Today the kids played a clever game of hide and seek with some small stuffed dogs. It kept them occupied for a good hour but I realized as I scanned the kitchen that most of the small stuffed dogs remained hidden. They peeked out of teapots and poked out of the cabinets. I added as many as I could see to the growing pile of toys in the basket and moved on to the playroom.

Surprisingly enough, the playroom was picked up and put together. I straightened up the kitchen area...putting away dishes and teacups and tucking in the little chairs. I put the birthday cake, minus all it's contents, back on it's shelf. The mail from the mailbox was carpeting the floor and when I went to stuff them into the mailbox I found yet more Little People and pets.
Then I started up the stairs.

Here is where it all turned bad. The stairs were littered with the remains of the kids' play from the bottom to the tippity top. There were so many shoes tumbling down the steps one would think I had 10 kids. I bent down to pick up the shoes and put them in their baskets and added the cheerleader pom poms, pirate vest, pirate hook and knights armor to the basket growing heavy in my arms. I had now reached the second floor. Surely I had little left to do.

Before I could begin put the toys in the basket where they belonged, I needed to confront the remains of the hurricane that struck our second floor. Weapons of all kind-swords, guns, knives, wands-were everywhere. I picked them all up and put them back in the weapons basket (why yes, we have a weapon basket...doesn't everyone) in the dress up area. While in there, I also hung up the Princess dresses and put away the multiple pairs of plastic bejeweled shoes. Hung up the pirate and knight gear and tossed the cheerleader pom poms into the pom pom basket (and yes, we have a pom pom basket too.) In my son's room I stashed the stuffed dogs into the stuffed animal bag and put some chapter books back on his shelf.

On into the girls' room. Fairy dolls safely stowed away in their fairy houses and the little pets and their stuff zipped into the bags in which they belong. I closed up the castles and doll house and picked up a few stray Polly Pocket Princess dolls and stuck them into their basket. Found a few more stuffed animals (do these things multiply while we sleep?) and tossed them onto Katie's bed, because Lord knows she won't be sleeping in it.

Finally, finally I think I am done. And the funny thing is, the kids did spend some time picking up themselves, but, I can't, for the life of me, figure out what it is they cleaned up. Despite their oversight, I gave them each a smooch, turned on Teresa's twirling Princess nightlight and Sam's thunder and lightning storm machine and head downstairs. Maybe they just didn't see all the debris from a rainy day well played? I may want to check on what our vision health plan covers...but I'm not sure corredtive lenses will do any good.

Monday, July 6, 2009