Monday, April 20, 2009

Happy Birthday

It is hard to believe that my youngest and last child is turning one today. It is a bittersweet feeling to be saying goodbye to infancy and hello to toddler hood.

With every child, time seems to pass even more quickly. I look at my girls and wonder how I lost them to "big-girlness". Wasn't it just a few years ago that Sarah was born...can she really be 8? Megan has morphed into a surly pre-schooler who has outgrown pre-school quickly. Little Emma, who was born the size of the other two at 2 months, is walking and finding her Independence.

Despite all the stresses of a newborn, it is one of the stages I love the most. I love being the provider of sustenance and comfort that only I can give her. The utter helplessness surrendered to total love and care.

We have partially weaned and I long for, yet dread, the end of breastfeeding. It is an amazing bond that is indescribable.

What an amazing year this has been. There were times when I thought I would lose my mind, yet I wouldn't change a thing. My dear sweet Emma, I love you more than words can say (however I will say that I love you more when you sleep through the night). Your sisters, even Megan, have embraced you and love you more and more each day. You have made our family complete and I love you, little love bug.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Long lasting Aluminum

10 years ago today, I married my best friend.

Barf...I know it's terribly cliche, but in this case it is absolutely true.

The past 10 years of my life have been wonderful. I cannot imagine what my life would have been like without Pat by my side. Believe me, he has his flaws just like everyone, but he has kept me laughing for the last 10 years and the 4.5 years of dating prior to that.

He is my confidant, my rock, my best friend, and my pain in the ass.

Over lunch today my coworkers and I were discussing marriage. One of my friends mentioned that they had heard that the 7th year of a marriage was the hardest. Another one agreed, but then her marriage ended in divorce. I thought and thought then stated that I couldn't recall a really bad year.

We have had our ups and downs, but I can't really remember any horrible fights or stressful times in our marriage. Other things in life may have been difficult, but they brought us together instead of tearing us apart.

The time has passed quickly, yet I feel like he and I have always been together. I can't imagine my life without him and I am glad we found each other.

By the way, evidently the traditional gift for a 10th anniversary is ALUMINUM! Nothing screams I love you more that a roll of tin foil or a can of soda!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

I hate Jillian

Today is day 10 of the 30 Day Shred Challenge at the Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans. It is also Weigh in Wednesday. While I don't really hate Jillian, I do really hate today's weigh in. I don't quite understand what has happened. I have done the shred every day since day 1, I have been watching what I eat. I feel like I took it easy on Easter and did not overindulge. I have had unusual self-restraint when it comes to all the chocolate Easter candy that is in my house. yet, the scale this morning reported a .8lb weigh GAIN. WTF?!?! How the hell did that happen!? I was so depressed that for a brief moment this morning I contemplated giving up, I should just accept the fact that I will be "fluffy" for the rest of my life and deal with it.

By the time I got to work, I realized that my body is dealing with a lot of change (you know the not pumping and reducing breastfeeding to 1 or 2x a day) that I just need to be patient. I do feel as though I am seeing improvement in areas, just not on the scale. I have come to hate phase 1 of the workout though. the first few days I felt energized afterward and loved how sore I felt in the morning (that means it's working, right?). But by day 5, my knees starting hurting. the jumping jacks kill my knees! I am pretty sure the aerobic part of the jumping jacks is no problem, it's the pain that makes me want to stop.

I will forge ahead and keep doing phase 1 for a few more days and then bump up to phase 2. If I can managed to find a few more minutes to exercise, I'll hop on the treadmill too (I did that on Monday and it felt really good). I will also begin really tracking my food intake.

Here's hoping for a better week to come!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

The Easter Bunny made his appearance, as usual, bright and early this morning. I heard Zoe barking like mad trying to keep him from invading her space. He must have been running late because the dawn had already broken and as I glanced at the clock it already was pushing 6AM.

I tried to shower before anyone else woke up, but that did not go according to plan. The big girls knocked on the bathroom door as I was getting in the shower. I told them they had to wait and that they could crawl into bed with Pat (who had just gotten home from work about an hour before). Before I was done with my shower, Sarah was asking to get Emma who was up and crying in her crib.

We all went down to see what the Easter Bunny left for the girls. They had to find their baskets which were hidden all around, as well as the 15 eggs we dyed yesterday. They had a good time and we discovered that Emma loves marshmallow peeps!

Off to church and the second egg hunt of the day. Pat stayed home to sleep and we went to get more sugar! Emma decided to show off her lungs during church and was extremely loud. Then home to eat lunch and put the baby down for a nap.

I was able to work in a session of the 30 Day Shred (thankfully, I've been able to resist much of the candy laying around the house) and we leave in a bit to go to Grandma and Pappy's for dinner with Aunt Jan and Uncle Charles and Easter Hunt number 3!

Here are a few shots of the day:

At the house before church

After the Egg Hunt at Church

Emma is helping open the eggs

The girls with their loot from Easter Egg hunt #2


Egg Update

Here are a few pics of the dyeing process from yesterday afternoon.

By the way...The eggs peeled perfectly and were delicious! Must remember to boil them this way all the time!

Friday, April 10, 2009

How to Boil an Egg

This is a touchy subject in my in-law's home. Many a family reunion has been "ruined" by deviled eggs that even the devil couldn't peel. My father-in-law has many theories on the best way to boil an egg. I can't remember exactly what they are, but you are either supposed to use old eggs, or new eggs; peel them right away, or let them sit. I can't remember. One year he even conducted an experiment. He used both new and old eggs. I honestly don't think it mattered, both of the eggs ended up looking pitted and less than desirable.

Since it is that time of year again, I thought I would conduct my own experiment. Now, I didn't get all scientific and have a control group or anything, but I did try a new method found here. Here are a few photos of the process:

This goes against everything my mother's "boil an egg" recipe states, so I am reluctant. Who knew I needed salt and a pin?

Poking a hole in the wide end is supposed to help air escape during the boiling process so that you don't have that lovely air pocket at one end. Now, this will probably mean that my eggs are guaranteed to be pink and purple when I peel them after dying, but it's only food coloring, right?

This recipe calls for you to actually place the eggs into boiling water and then simmer them for a particular time based on their size. These are extra-large eggs, so they simmer for 13 minutes.

Covering them with cold water after boiling...that I knew!!

These eggs will be dyed either tonight or tomorrow morning. I'm sure I'll capture that as well. However, I won't be able to post about the effectiveness of this boiling method until Easter morning.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Hair today...

She's almost 5 years old, so I thought we had managed to make it through this stage unscathed. Clearly, I was wrong. Thankfully, she didn't do that much damage.

Hopefully it will grow out quickly!


Just downloaded pictures from FEBRUARY! I am such a horrible Mom! I love this close-up of Emma.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Wednesday Weigh-In

I believe that I have successfully transitioned the baby off of bottles and on to Whole milk. She is not thrilled about it, but she will drink it. She has also woken up during the middle of the night and wanted to nurse, so maybe it hasn't been as successful as I'd hoped.

What this means for me is that I will no longer be pumping milk during the day at work. I cannot begin to tell you how exciting this is for me. While I am sad that my baby is growing up, I am thrilled to not be constantly stressed over how much milk I am producing. For you breastfeeding advocates out there, don't panic, I will still be nursing her when she needs is, but hopefully it will only be at bedtime.

This also means that I will feel much better about cutting back on my calories and stepping up on my exercise. I've used this spring break to do both. Along with my sisters at The Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans, I have embarked on the 30 Day Shred Challenge. Today is day 3 and I feel great. I even think my hubby will be starting it too (he's waiting until after his Easter indulgences).

Today's weigh-in wasn't that great, but I've just started the Challenge and fully expect next weeks numbers to be better!

Starting weight: 1_8.4

Last week: 1_0.4

This Week : 1_0.4

Gain/loss: 0

Total: +2.o

Feeling productive

I am on Spring Break this week and I am totally loving it. Normally, we travel to Pittsburgh to visit my husband's family. This year, he is on call all week and is unable to take leave. So, I get to have a relaxing week filled with household projects AND am able to send the kids to daycare!! BONUS!

So far, I have switched out Emma's outgrown clothes for her "new" spring/summer wardrobe. One good thing about having had 3 girls is that by the 3rd one, we don't need to buy any new clothes! I also pulled out some "new" clothes for Megan. She is growing like a weed and desperately needed new spring/summer stuff as well. She might not be able to wear as much as Sarah's old stuff as I would prefer, since she's got a little more junk in her trunk than the 5 slims will allow. The clothes have all been washed and are waiting to be put away.

Yesterday was the day I had set aside for Sears to come and do the annual maintenance on the washer & dryer as well as the dishwasher. While waiting for the 2 different repairmen to come I was able to take care of my "annual maintenance" at the gyn. as well as pay bills and begin organizing the files in the basement. I received a surprise visit from a nice young man from Verizon in the afternoon who has convinced me to save about $40 a month by switching to Fios. {If anyone has anything good or bad to say about Fios, please let me know. I can still cancel.}

Today I have finished copying all the paperwork needed for our Refinance and have worked out. Will tackle the remainder of the organizing in the basement and possibly wash the slipcover on the sofa. I am procrastinating on cleaning out the fridge, but will get to that at some point this week.

Not too shabby!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Sunday Morning Musings

I was woken very early this morning and am now up for the day. There is something inherently wrong with waking on a Sunday morning before the sun has risen.

Yesterday was such a busy day for us. Megan had TBall practice in a wind tunnel at 9am. I had to take the other two girls since Pat had to go into work for a few hours. Meg did not feel like participating at first, but who would blame her. She finally fell into line and did ok. Our neighbor across the street was another story. He refused to go out on the field and play. His dad didn't give in either. They stood there and watched, in the cold wind, until practice was over.

Sarah had her first soccer game at 10:30. Thankfully, Pat was home with enough time to take her for me. That way Megan could warm up and the baby could go down for an actual nap. Turns out Sarah did pretty well and scored two goals! The two of them got home with just enough time to eat a quick lunch and for Pat to shower before we headed off to Grandma & Pappy's house. We had to drop off Daughters 1 & 3 so that the middle child could have her special day with Mommy and Daddy.

We took Megan to see Dora Live downtown. She had been looking forward to this for weeks. It was great, because we have been using it as a way to get her to cooperate when she was being difficult. Like on Thursday when we went to the toy store to buy a birthday gift for Sarah's friend Grace--Megan wouldn't get out of the car unless I told her I would buy her a toy in the store. Of course that wasn't going to happen. So I just reminded her that she didn't have to go to Dora. As soon as I said it, another mom in the car next to us said that she would love to go to Dora. That little bugger couldn't get out of the car fast enough!

It was nice to spend a few hours with just one child. Megan needed that time with us and I'm so glad that we did it. She is your typical middle child (I should know, I was too) and definitely needs reassurance that we love her. It was so fun to watch her enjoy the show. She sang along and got into the whole thing. It was wonderful. Pat and I kept looking over at her and giggling at her delight! She also ate a whole HUGE box of Mike and Ike candies, so we did have to deal with a sugar crash later on the way home from Grandma's though!

We got home just in time to eat a rushed dinner and straighten up for our tax guy to come over with our completed returns. We actually fared better on our taxes than we thought we would. All in all, it was a busy yet fun filled day. A nice way to start Spring Break!

The sun has now risen and I need to brew my coffee. Maybe I'll even get to read some of the paper this morning!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Weight loss failure

I need to give back my 5 lb button!

I had lost 5 lbs with the Sisterhood, but I did not manage to keep it off! I put 2lbs back on. I am horrible at this. My grandiose plans of losing 30 lbs by my beach trip to North Carolina in July is shot to hell.

Good news is, my baby turns 1 in a few weeks and I won't be all stressed out about breastfeeding. In my head I had planned a very slow weight loss until Spring Break and then I would really kick it into gear. So, now I get to just do the "kick it into gear" part of my plan.

Hopefully when I check in with you all next week, there will be a positive weight loss to post this time around.

Since I am super self conscious, I am taking a page from Lisa @ Rude Manor and posting my numbers this way

Previous Weight 1_8.4
Current Weight 1_0.4

Total loss/gain +2 lbs