Wednesday, April 30, 2014

You down with OCD...Yeah you know me!

I can't stand a mess in my house. I have to make sure things are clean and orderly. I get up each day and cleaning pretty much starts happening. I will throw in a load of laundry, start vacuuming, and the dishes get done. Some mornings I have even gotten most of my house work done by 8am. I like to get it out of the way. I must have things clean!

I hate crumbs! I hate dog hair! But with children and dogs comes both. And since I love my children and my dogs, and am not getting rid of them any time soon, I must clean up after them.

The dog hair, it is everywhere! How dare they shed! There will always be animals in my house so I have to let it go that the inevitable is that there will always be some amount of hair. So this is where I vacuum every single day! Some days twice or do a sweep on the floors.

Crumbs! Ugg, these days they are everywhere. Seriously I think Chase goes out of his way to make a mess when he eats. Jay is not any better (sorry hon if you end up reading this someday, but let's face it, you are not the cleanest person). And now Wes has begun finger foods. Eating becomes a tornado affect with him. It ends up everywhere!

I love these blogs and parenting articles that say to not worry about laundry and cleaning. To focus on spending time with your children. I get it! Really, I do. I feel guilty sometimes that I am scurrying around the house. But who else is gonna do it?! I surely don't have a maid coming in weekly. The housework does not get done by itself. I also think a clean environment is important for my children. I don't want them on a dirty floor and putting things in their mouth that should clearly not be there.

Truthfully,  I enjoy it. I like cleaning. It is gratifying to me to sit back after I have cleaned and not see those damn crumbs!

It's not just cleaning though. It's things like having order. Example: Chase's book shelf. It drives me nutty when the books are not in a neat order or just thrown on the shelf. I have to arrange them weekly. Most of the time knowing it will only be like this for 10 minutes, maybe 20. Another example: Chase's play kitchen set. I like for his play food to be with the other food, dishes with the dishes, and play cookies with the other play cookies... you get what I am saying right? A touch of OCD, maybe a little. But is that such a bad thing? I don't think so.

Maybe just maybe some day some of it will rub off on the boys. At least one of them. Until then I have succumbed to the fact that I will be "forever" cleaning up after them. And I don't even want to think about the teenage years. Messy rooms, smelly clothes, dirty dishes...sounds like a night after a frat party to me, and quite frankly a nightmare!

These are the days of my life! Thank you to Lysol, my vacuum, my Shark steam cleaner and Dawn for getting me through these times.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Jumping Off A Cliff

We all have our fears. I have three that stand out for me:


Let's go in descending order shall we:

HEIGHTS: My stomach drops at the thought of being too high up. I always got that queasy feeling in the pit of my stomach when I would walk up bleachers when I was young. Even the awesomeness of a Ferris wheel makes me nervous. I was not a tree climber. You will never see me jump from a plane. This chick will never bungee jump off a bridge for the pure adrenaline rush. Nope, none of that sounds appealing to me. More like a death wish! (Refer to fear number one, we will visit that one shortly) 

SPIDERS: Anything that has more than four legs (I like most furry creatures) should be squished! I really hate spiders. Yes, hate is a strong word. But I do! I have a problem even killing them. I once saw a movie that when the spider was washed down a drain it multiplied. Of coarse this doesn't happen, but I still won't wash a spider down the drain yet yell for Jay to kill it. I have passed the same fear onto Chase. Just the other day we were playing in his room and he jumped off me going "Spider mommy, spider" In a frantic rush I practically threw Chase off  me to scurry across the room myself. But I couldn't see a spider. Chase was able to show me where it was. I shit you not, this Spider was the size of the head of a pin! I am sorry I passed on my fear of spiders but sure glad he didn't get my bad eye sight!

DEATH: This topic frightens me most. It always has. I think it is the fear of not knowing what comes after death. I do believe in God. I do believe we live on. I am just not sure what all that means and it terrifies me. If I think about it for too long it brings tears to my eyes and an unsettling feeling within me. I have lost people in my life who I have been close to. Death is not comforting to me. I realize it is a part of life. Unavoidable and inevitable. Now having children of my own I fear it even more. I just want to be able to watch them grow. To watch their children grow. I want to be able to bring them happiness and share in the joy of all that life brings us. I also fear the moments where my children will experience the sadness which comes with losing someone you love.  Yes, this is life yet I know how that pain feels and no mother wants their children to feel it. I want to be able to ease any sadness they feel, to have them know I will at least always do what I can in my mommy power to soften any pain.

They say to overcome fear you need to face it. I will tell you one thing I know for certain: I sure as hell am not going to be jumping off a cliff, with a spider on my back looking at the rocks underneath me!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

If J Lo were my BFF

I took Chase to get his hair cut last Friday. While we were waiting a Mexican man (I know this because he was talking about his heritage and where he came from as he got his hair cut) came over to us. He started to chat, and if you know me, I don't have a problem having a conversation with anyone. I enjoy talking to people, even strangers.

This man started talking to the boys. He guessed there age right on! Then he asked how old I thought he was. I took a shot at it and guessed low to his amusement and happiness. I complimented him that he looked good for his age. He said that the reason he looked young was that he had never married, that he didn't have a woman to make him look old. Hmmm, that should have been my first red flag that the conversation was going to go further south. I thought I would give him the benefit of doubt on that comment since he had gone on to say that he moved here 20 years ago and didn't have time to marry because he worked so much. I couldn't condemn this man for coming here and being a hard worker right?! I am a sarcastic person and have a sense of humor so... I let that comment go.

Then it happened, he tried to guess my age. He looked at me and said 38. 38! WTF! For those who don't know I am 35, I will be 36 in a couple of months. So I told him no, not 38, 35. He looked at me with this quizzical face and said, "you are looking old". That was it. I was flabbergasted!  I guess he was never taught that if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say it at all! I tried my best to keep a smile on my face as he went on to say that it was my boys doing that to me. And he tried to joke that his mother use to say boys are "problems". As he went on about this I couldn't even focus on his words. I was feeling bummed. Did I really look old? I try to take care of myself. I don't feel like I look closer to 40 than 35.

I can tell you that I surely don't feel my age. Some days it is hard for me to grasp that I am 35. It seemed like just yesterday I was 25. Life has surely changed since then. I have grown. Matured. But I don't feel old. I am in better shape now than I was then. I try hard to take care of myself. I exercise, use anti-wrinkle cream, and try to eat right most days. It is the inevitable...I am growing older. Big Sigh. 

Picture copied from

I know I am in a different chapter of my life. I am at the best point in my life. I have a family, two little boys, and a roof over our head. I get to watch my children grow, then someday, I will watch their children grow.

Botox? Collagen Therapy? Plastic Surgery? If only I were BFF's with J Lo then I am sure I would look as fabulous as she does. She would be sure to hook me up, she's cool like that right?!  I would have a trainer to tell me when to work out, a cook to prepare my meals, and a personal doctor to be sure that there was not a wrinkle or pore visible to anyone else! But J Lo isn't my BFF and I sure don't live in Hollywood.

Ok, so I can't change the fact that I am getting older. It sure does suck though. I wish I could freeze time. Right now! I like right now. I can't though so I just hope that I will age as gracefully as my grandmother is (she is in her 80's and looks like she is in her 60's!)

So, to the man who opened his big mouth, I would like to send him a virtual FU! How dare you tell me I look old. At least I am not living my life alone. I will grow old with my partner and family. Even if they do give me wrinkles and gray hair, at least my heart is full! 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Glass Jar

A year ago I saw this clever thing on Pinterest that I wanted to try. So I did! The idea was to take a mason jar and fill it with happy moments and good things that happen through the year. Then on New Years Eve, take them out and read over all those things that had happened. I loved this idea and committed to doing it. In the end I wanted to take those moments and make a scrap book out of them.

A year passed, 2014 rolled in, and I was possibly, with out doubt, too intoxicated to remember the damn jar. It wasn't until last week I opened it up and looked through it. I had decided to not just make them happy thing but also funny things. I even used funky scissors to cut the paper and had little pieces ready to write on. It made me smile to read a few of them. Yet truth be told I was disappointed in the number of moments counted. I feel I forgot about this jar more than I used it.

I have decided that I am going to give it another try. I will move the jar from the shelf it sat on to a new place. I haven't figured exactly where just yet but if I see it everyday then maybe that will help. I think adding the funny moments is another flare to this jar. Laughter is very important to me. There is not a sound I love more than hearing my children laugh. (Wesley just started belly laughs! It just makes me smile!)

I want to to be more aware of all the happy things that happen. I want to be sure to celebrate these moments and look back on them with a smile and a full heart. Then if I can put these in a scrap book I will be able to hand down these memories to my children. I want them to know just how much I treasured each one.

Just reading the picture above brings me back to how I felt in that moment. This is what the Glass Jar is all about. Reliving those special moments that pass by. To feel them again, to never forget them. To pass on a memory.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Run, Forest, Run!

The Vermont City Marathon is vastly approaching! T-minus 1 month and 14 days until I do my first Half Marathon. I get to do this event with my father, splitting the marathon. I am excited! This became a goal of mine last year. I had wanted to run in the relay last year but our team didn't get picked. I was pretty bummed about that since even pregnant I kept to running. It was then I decided that I wanted to train for a half after I had Wesley.

I love this event! It is one of the most inspiring events I have ever been a part of. It brings me to tears each time. There is such a unity of people. A rush of adrenaline just watching some of these folks. Everyone has the same goal. Each person wants to finish, to complete their leg, their own personal journey.

Last year I was at the finish line waiting for my father to come through (that crazy man was running the entire marathon!) and I remember this girl coming over the finish line. I am not sure if she was running the half or the whole but none the less she was crying. I was so touched by her emotion and happiness that it made me cry. She had completed her own goal and you could see how intense that was.

Then there are those people in their 60's, 70's, even 80's that run, even if it is a leg of the marathon! Let's not forget about the wheel chair racers who start of the race every year. Their strength and determination is remarkable. These are the people I look at with admiration.

Athletic, skinny, overweight, old, young... it does not matter! Everyone gathers together to RUN!

It means something different to each person. A dream, a goal, or maybe just for the hell of it. The reason doesn't matter. What matters is the unity of the run.

Running for me means solace at the end of a day. It means strength, determination, and a goal which I have become passionate about. I run for ME! It is something I can call my own. Running brings me comfort. Running gives me strength.

In just 4 days we come up on the 1 year anniversary of an heartbreaking tragedy. It will be the one year anniversary of the Boston Marathon Bombing.

This post is for each one of them who ran that day. For each life that was affected by this evil act. One thing is certain, just as all these people came together to run, a community of people came together to help heal and overcome.

On the 15th, that is Tuesday, get out there! Run, walk, skip! Which ever you choose. Just do it and do it in memory of those affected by the events of April 15th, 2013. Be thankful that you can! We are all blessed to be able to run or walk. It is a gift! Each day is a gift. Stop, reflect, and be thankful.

Happy running!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

10 ways that a toddler is like a puppy

I love my children. That goes without saying right? I don't need to sit here and go through all the things that make my heart swell with joy each day. As any parent, my love in unconditional. Even in those moments that are not so beautiful. The ones where we are beside ourselves with the answers. The times when we just simply shake our heads, walk away, and even sometimes yell more loudly than we intended to.

With that being said I bring to you the top 10 reasons why a toddler is like a new puppy!

1-You have to take time to train them. A toddler, like a puppy, does not know how to act, we have to show them what to do.

2-Positive reinforcement works wonders: You take a dog out to pee you typically give it a cookie when it comes back in. The same goes for a toddler when training to use the potty. Treats and prizes of any sort make all the difference.

3-You need to exercise a puppy to tire it out. I worked with one veterinarian that use to tell clients that: A tired puppy is a happy puppy. Yes! Exactly! Same with my toddler. If I get him outside and he is able to play and becomes tired not only is he happy, but I am happy! So with spring upon us get those toddlers out an "run them" as you would your puppy!

4-A puppy often needs to be told repeatedly a command before it understands it or follows it. Toddler like puppy will need to be told several times what to do before he/she does it.

5-Some puppy's are louder than others and like to bark. This resulting in waking the newborn baby in the house at the most inconvenient times. A toddler too will yell or "screech" at the top of his/her lungs and wake the baby you worked for so long to get down to sleep. This resulting in frustration, anger and exhaustion for the parent.

A toddler and his dog
6-Puppy's can be fussy. Sometimes it takes a few tries at different brands of foods before you find one that will actually satisfy your new puppy. Then there is the toddler who will often turn food away, throw food, or spit out whatever is in front of them.

7-Toys will not last very long. Both a puppy and a toddler have a way of taking a toy, even if it is their favorite, and breaking it. Mom's and dad's, don't get too attached to the toys and never spend too much. It's like watching them eat your money then spitting it back out.

8-The attention span of a puppy and toddler are identical. You will find yourself repeating the same phrases over and over. And if you are outside be sure to either have your puppy on a leash and your child within view or hold their hand! It can take a blink of an eye and they are off running.

9-Both a puppy and a toddler are incredibly adorable when they sleep. This making your heart gush with happiness and forgiveness, once again forgetting all about 1 through 8.

10-Lastly I leave you with a positive similarity of a puppy and a toddler. Both will give you unconditional love. They will still wake up each day and lick your face (or kiss you, it's all the same right?!) They will forgive your mistakes. They will shake with happiness as long as you play and spend time with them.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Maternal Itch

I just love the baby phase. My baby is 6 1/2 months now and I keep watching everything go by. I am fortunate to be able to spend this time with him. I know that this stage is short and soon I will be yelling asking him to get off the table and stop jumping on the couch. I love babies. Always have. If it were up to me I would have 10 or 20. Okay so really, not that big of an army but 3 or 4 would be nice. Instead I have two children whom I love dearly and wouldn't trade for anything (okay so maybe on some days you could convince me to trade my toddler for some shoes, a nice bag, maybe even chocolate, ! JK! Really, I will keep him!)

We are done having children. I still get people asking if we are going to have "one more" or try for the girl. Listen up people, no more babies! We have made sure of that. Well, not me personally but a Dr in Colchester made sure Jay would not be able to get me prego again. I had the babies, he got "fixed".

There is a part of me that felt a bit sad though to be honest. I am beyond lucky to have my boys. I love them to pieces. I knew Wesley would be our second and last. Yet just knowing that I am not going to have any more babies does sadden me some. I know I need to count my blessings since there are some people who never get to experience having children. I realize this and will never take that for granted. The maternal part of me can't help but think...if only I could have one more. But what about if there was "one more"...Would I still have this feeling? Would there always be a longing. Maybe it is just how I am wired. How many women are wired. It is that silly "maternal itch" within us. I get it, some of you may be reading this and saying, not every woman! Maybe you are are even saying HELL NO and cursing at the very thought of having another baby. I get that too. For me, I just freekin love babies!

It's not like pregnancy was kind to me both times. The first time around was pretty awful and I was sick and had weird medical complications. This second time was wonderful. I loved it. I really and truly did.

As I am writing this I look across the room at Wes who is in his swing and is just waking from a nap. He has this big smile on his face as soon as I say his name. It lights his whole face up, my heart, and the entire room.

I am trying to be sure I relish in all these moments. Soon they will just be memories. I know they say every stage is wonderful. I will probably feel this way when they are 10, wishing they were 4 or 5. It's about slowing time down. Something we cannot do.

I know I already said it, but I am fortunate. I don't want to take for granted the true miracle of being able to have children. I am blessed each day I wake up to those faces.