Monday, March 25, 2013

Our Galway Girl

Do you remember last year?
We were driving back from an amazing surprise vacation to Savannah, Georgia?!  And this year, for your birthday, Mother Nature surprised you with several inches of snow.  Not cool.
When I became your aunt, you were just so teeny.  A little button of a girl.  Adorable and spunky.  And now, you are becoming a little lady.  Still adorable, still spunky, still kinda teeny.. just multiplied with endless possibilities.
When I watch you cheer, or dance, or play basketball and softball... I am continually amazed by your wealth of talent.  You are incredibly coordinated, quick, aware and full of fire. 
In addition, you are so bright!  With impressive grades.  So kind, so sweet.  You are accepting and inviting.  Giggly and smiley. 
You are full of the very best traits of this family. 
The sky is literally the limit for your rising star.
I love to be your aunt.  I love to share your space and watch you grow.  You could be just about anything you can dream.  So dream big, little girl.  And always remember, you have a very large fan club willing to lift you up.
Happy Birthday, Galway Girl.
Our beautiful Irish Princess.

Friday, March 22, 2013


How many times must you ask Coach to take a trip over Spring Break, before he eventually agrees and sends his wife and children gleefully packing for the beach???

Answer: I have no idea... Do You?  Because we have easily asked 6,782 times since January and yet... we are expecting an average temperature of 39 degrees next week and Coach has barely agreed to a family movie date.

Surprisingly, marrying a Small Town Farm Boy is not as glamorous and adventurous as one may imagine. (dripping sarcasm..)

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Progress Report.

Coco has an adorable first year teacher, for her Pre-K class.  This week, Coco received her progress report.  Very nicely organized, typed with detailed points, including:
* Coco shows eagerness to learn by asking many topic-related questions and participating in activities on a regular basis.
* She really enjoys the musical/movement part of our day and is very active participant.  She independently recites our rhymes and songs randomly through out the day!!
Longtime Mom Translation:
*Coco is constantly asking the most annoying questions ALL DAY LONG.  Even while I am trying to assist other students, Coco is totally up in my business.
* She randomly bursts into song throughout the day, most of the time we can barely decipher which rock lyrics she is blurting out, desperately sucking all of the attention out of the room.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Dear Grandpa:

Start of Birthday Blog:
Dear Grandpa:
Don't. Ever. Do. That. Again.
End of Birthday Blog.
Enough Said.
It has been previously mentioned, early this Fall, Grandpa had an unexpected operation on his heart.  His family was sincerely shocked to the core.
Though, I am honestly confused by how shocked they were... if anything, this family should take a significant portion of the blame.  How could this poor man's heart NOT have weakened??
With 5 children.  Paired with 5 exceptionally awesome people.  Creating 14 grand-children who are beyond cute (like to the point the word cute barely qualifies as an appropriate adjective..)  All to blame because he fell in love with one special lady, many years ago...
That's A LOT of love, for one man to consistently produce. Every single gosh darn day... he's got to smile that huge happy smile, hug little grand babies goodbye, plan lunch dates with his lady, admire his sons' and giggle with his daughters... then he has to check on in-laws, attend all our dances, concerts, games, business openings...etc.
Add in, having to be the single greatest son of all times.  The most devoted Husband.  The Uncle you can always count on... and pretty much, just the Best-Good Natured Man in a minimum 5 county area.
That is a lot of pressure for just one ol' farmer!  No wonder he needed to get his ticker in for a check-up.  And if I may be so bold, to speak for the family: We except the blame and really are not that sorry...  Honestly, we'll probably do it all again.
Because having Grandpa's attention, his audience, his affection... earning his giggle, his smile, his quick phone call... counting on his kindness, his willingness to help, his unwavering support... it is too precious to live without. No negotiations.
So I repeat.
Don't. Ever. Do. That. Again.
You are the best of all of us. 
You are our heart. 
Happy Birthday.. and many many more.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Now Playing on WE TV:

The first thing that happens, immediately after I have spent weeks stuck at home not feeling well... is the urge to spruce up our home.  We (me) decided, we were going to try several little project, using items we already had sitting around.  Extra gallons of paint, pictures that have never been framed, things purchased (on whim) at Target clearance stacked in a Maybe Someday Pile. Then, include some serious Spring Cleansing.
Sunday, we began to clear EVERYthing out of the hall bathroom.  Empty the drawers.  Freshen the paint.  Much later, after the kids were sleeping, We (me) decided we should use this opportunity to really disinfect the bathroom.

Me: How about we both head into the bathroom, with giant buckets of Clorox and seriously clean every single inch of the bathroom?  Really knock it out, together, as a team??

Coach: Uhhhh, that sounds awful.

Me: ... Maybe it'll be like a Rom Com and we'll smile and giggle over amusing cleaning jokes..  Playfully tossing soapy water at each other and kissing bubbles off noses.

Coach: Rom Com?

Me: A Romantic Comedy!  We'll wear white T-shirts and panties, a peppy re-made acoustic 80's song will play in the back ground.  It'll be totally adorable.  Lovin life...

Coach: Fine.

We entered bathroom.  Totally dressed in sweaty crap clothes.  Our hands burned from Clorox.  No one giggled.  No kissing bubbles off noses.... we gagged and repeatedly verbalized how repulsive our bathroom really was, up close.

Rom Com Moment #2

As mentioned, Sunday morning I tossed EVERYthing old and germy.  Coach spent Sunday and Monday (his day off) sprucing up bathroom.

Late Monday night.
Me: You know what's becoming pretty awkward??

Coach: What?

Me: I threw your toothbrush away more than 40 hours ago... and you still haven't asked me about it, or inquired if I have purchased you a new one.

Coach: This is awkward...

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Just Hangin in the Kitchen,

around the lunch table.

Coco: ....because Joe P is my boyfriend and when we get married we...

Coach: What??

Me: Remember, you can not get married for a long time... How old did I tell you and Joe P, you have to be to get married?

Coco: Ugh... when we're 25.  And then, we will get married (she smiles big at me) and then, mommy will be the mostest proud of me ever!!

Me: Ummm... other things will make me the most proud ever, like graduating from high school, going to college, learning to read and

Coco: And getting married, to Joe P.

Me to Coach: I don't know... maybe my daughters should see me accomplish something other than just being your wife...

My Home,
setting back the feminist movement by decades.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Sweet ideas. Good Intentions.

This weekend, Doc and Clark were renovating their kitchen.  Building walls, new cabinets.. the whole 9 yards.  Coach was not able to go help.  He had to work and we (mostly him) decided I had been too sick to be left alone all weekend with the kids.  I felt SUPER guilty.  If any of Coach's siblings say jump, Coach always hopes to enthusiastically and repeatedly respond "How High? Pick ME! How High?!"
But his dumb sickly wife, needed a dumb babysitter. I wanted to think of something to do for Doc and Clark.  I decided, to send cookies.
I didn't want too cute, overly expensive cookies.   I wanted yummy, grab and snack while busy cookies.  I searched the Internet and found Baked! of Bloomington.  Their 'gimmick' is: they are a local shop, which bakes cookies fresh when ordered and will deliver late at night.  Their hours are 8:00pm-3:00am and are located on a college campus.  You know... in case you get the munchies late at night and don't feel like pizza.  Genius!
I called.  Placed an order for 3 dozen, hand picked different flavors, ingredients, added Hershey's kisses to a few... included ice cold milk.  Set to be delivered to their house by 9:00pm.  Perfect!!  Just when the workers could use a little sugar.
Coach told me to include a note. "Sorry we couldn't help... Here's some cookies..."  We were both pretty excited.  We knew it would make Doc smile.  It made us feel a little better for skipping out.

Before 9:00pm, my phone rings. 
It is the delivery driver (PS. Driver and employee were both friendly): Hi.  Um, I'm driving to the location... you said this would be a house but her address is actually an apartment.

Me: No.  They live in an house.  There are a few apartments around them. 

(we confirmed address, I gave more detailed directions, he was agreeing with street names and landmarks... he kept driving...)

Driver:  I'm sorry but this is an apartment. 

Me: It's not an apartment.  There should be a few cars.  Lots of people working inside.

Driver:  There are cars but... Wait. Are you sure this house is in Bloomington, Indiana??

Me: Uhhhhh.... no.  Bloomington, IL.  Are you guys located in Indiana?

Driver (laughing, still friendly): Yes! 

Me: Whoops.  This is awkward.  It never said Indiana any where on the website Menu.

Driver: No problem, it happens once or twice a week.

Coach and I were bummed, by the super fail. 
Coach said: I'm sure it happens, confusing poor stoned college kids all the time.

Doc and Clark:  We can't wait to see your new kitchen.  And I hope you liked your phantom cookies!
PS. Someone really needs to open a Baked! nearby.  Freshly baked cookies with your choice of ingredients, delivered at 2:00am.  That's beyond brilliant.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Worn out.

I have spent the last few weeks feeling awful.  My counts are low.  My body is low.  My spirits are low, as a result. Spending weeks feeling exhausted, becomes frustrating very quickly.  And for the life of me, I can not imagine why my body became so worn...
- The Season that would Never End.
Basketball Season began in October.
Coach, coached with the Varsity team.
Tink, had her first little season, locally.
And The Kid, played ball for THREE different teams.  A school team, a travel team and the local team. 
Throw in a few cousins to watch... Equals Coco and I attending more than a hundred games (literally).  Often more than one game, per day. 

 Tink and her crew..

- Blizzard Watch. 
On Saturday, basketball ended.
On Monday, Track began, in the midst of a busy 4 day weekend.  And just as Mom was finally ready to get her children back to school (and maybe catch a few naps...) March Blizzard 2013 hit, turning a 4 day weekend into a 6 day weekend.
Do you have any idea, how exhausting it is to dress then undress then dress then undress then dry then dress then undress, three children in snow clothes??

- As always, my adorable Coco, likes to keep me busy.  She is the Ultimate Drama for her Mama.  Friday, Coco returned from school with her sleeves taped.  Odd. I asked why she had masking tape on her sleeves: "My teacher did it.." No biggie.
As first, I was sorta shocked and maybe bothered.
Me: Coco! Why did she tape your sleeves??
Coco: Because she told me not to chew my sleeves one more time... and then I chewed it one more time... so she taped my shirt.
Me: ohhh...
Then, it made sense to me.
If I taped everything that girl chewed on...

We have a fairly quiet weekend planned, hopefully I can get plenty of rest.  Maybe the snow will melt... maybe Spring will bring better health.
Maybe Coco will turn 4.  And stop licking stuff.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Dancing Shoes.

Dear Gramma:
Last year, for your birthday, I gave you a taste of a polite yet firm lecture.  I demanded that you: take more time for yourself, tell people no, put yourself first, do more yoga, see your siblings...etc.
And you did!!
For 6 months, you grabbed onto the world.  You shopped with your daughters, got pedicures, went for lunches, took a few short trips, got your hair done and bought these fabulous shoes!!  Bravo!

But then, life threw us a little curve ball.
A bit of a hiccup, involving one of the very best parts of this family.  Immediately following that particular hiccup, several other hiccups occurred.  Too many.
In the years I have been a part of your family, I have seen you a little emotional at times.  Sweetly crying during prayers and family events.  Quietly taking the back seat to your husband and children... Except, on That Day you were a rock.  Steadfast.  Calm.  Collected.  I am sure you were scared and yet you remained strong, for your babies.
I was very proud, you were my family.

And now, here we are again...
Your Prince is renewed.
Your new home is nearly settled.
Your children are well.
And again... I wish for you happiness. 
I understand, you have difficult days ahead of you.  Please know, so many people appreciate your role as care-taker.  It may not have been a role you imagined for yourself but God certainly chose the right person to rise to the occasion.
Please also remember, many people appreciate Just You.  Your presence at lunch, at yoga, at holidays and short shopping trips.  Please schedule time for Just You. Take out your Dancing Shoes.
Happy Birthday, Gramma.
You are an amazing woman.

Blog Public: Please fill the Comment section for Gramma!  Sometimes we need to be reminded, our husbands are not always the most popular!