Friday, December 12, 2014

First Post in Three Months

Wow.  I haven't posted in THREE months.  Almost every Saturday morning for the last few months I have started a post or thought about it, meaning to come back later in the day but I just always run out of time because there is always so much to do.  I'm working full-time now so all of my errands, grocery shopping, cleaning and sometimes cooking ahead for the week are done on the weekends which leaves very little time for anything else.  It's been very stressful but I was finally starting to acclimate, only now to be in the throws of the holiday season which is throwing everything off again.

Anyway, I'll just do a quick rundown of what we've been up to since I last posted.

The girls did a mini-cheer camp in late September/early October which culminated in a performance at a high school football game.  Several of their friends did it also.  They loved it and are looking forward to doing it again next year.


In October We made our annual trip the pumpkin patch.  This time we went to one near the in-law's place.  They have lots of fun stuff--pony rides, petting zoo, carnival-type games, a train thingie made out of oil drums, etc.


The girls went as Monster High dolls for Halloween.  Kayley was Clawdeen Wolf and Olivia was Frankie Stein.  They went trick-or-treating with several of their friends, and since Halloween was on a Friday, a friend had a small party at her house after trick-or-treat.

Kayley as Clawdeen Wolf.  Olivia ran off and I never got a picture of just her.

The girls with their friend Lindsay (in the middle)

The girls with more friends

Love this one of Olivia (r).  Kayley in the middle and friend/neighbor Madeleine on the left.

We had Thanksgiving at the in-law's, spent the night and then went to their condo in Wesport (on the Washington Coast) for the rest of the weekend.  It was a fun, relaxing time.  I actually took TWO naps, one on Friday and one on Saturday, read a magazine and just enjoyed not spending the entire weekend running errands and cooking.

Girls in tree.  Wrong time of day and bad shadow.

Same tree, 2012

The beach

Last weekend we went to Snowflake Lane.

Last night the girls were reindeer in a play at school.  They didn't have any lines, they just pranced around at the beginning and then stood on risers and sang.  We tried to get there early to get good seats, and we thought we were there early but we ended up in the very back, so I didn't get any pictures except for one after it was over.

That about catches me up.  Hopefully I'll manage to post again before spring.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

A Great Weekend

Last Thursday was my first day off from work since the girls started school.  When they were in Kindergarten and I enjoyed having 4 hours every day I couldn't wait until they were in first grade and I would have 7.5, even though I knew it would be short-lived because the plan all along has been for me to go back to work once they were in school full time.  But as you know, a job opportunity fell in my lap back in April (well, late February, but it was mid-April by the time I started) and I've been working part time ever since, but will probably start increasing my hours soon.  And due to the Labor Day holiday and leaving early one day for Meet the Teacher, I ended up working at least half days every day of their first week, so last Thursday was the first day I was able to enjoy having 7.5 hours to do whatever.  I had a huge long list of things I wanted to do but I mostly just ended up cleaning because I was so behind.  I had Friday off also and managed to run a few errands, but neither day did I really do anything "fun", like get coffee or do fun shopping (not just like grocery shopping or whatever).  Nonetheless, it was great having a few days to just catch up on some stuff.

It was also great to, for once, be home when the girls got home from school.  Usually I'm still at work and Paul is home to greet them.  Thursday and Friday I got to do it.  A friend came home with them on Thursday because her mom needed someone to watch her for a few hours, and when they got here I had a snack all ready for them and sat and talked about what they had done at school and it was so nice to be able to do that.

On Friday I picked them up at school because they really wanted me to (they love being picked up as opposed to riding the bus, even though all their friends are on the bus with them most days) and then we went to a park that recently got new playground equipment.  They ran into several friends there and had a great time.

Saturday was a fun family day.  We went to the farmer's market for the first time all summer and then out to Luther Burbank Park.  The girls played in the sand and the water and collected a bunch of tiny shells, then they played on the playground for awhile.  It was so nice to just have some family time because it seems they spend almost every waking moment that they're not at school with one friend or another.

Both the park on Friday and Luther Burbank Park yesterday reminded me of years past when it was just us every day and all the different parks we used to play at.  I've really been missing those days lately, because now with them in all day school they really are officially over.  I never cried when they started Kindergarten.  I was way too excited to have a few hours to myself every day!  And they were still home for lunch every day and we had all afternoon to go do things or just play together.  Then on the night before 1st grade after everyone else was in bed I was on Facebook and a friend had posted something about how her and her daughter had had lunch together almost every day for 6+ years and now they wouldn't be anymore, and I lost it.

So I've been feeling really nostalgic for the old times and I feel like the last few days were vaguely reminiscent of my old stay-at-home-mom days and it made me happy.

The playground at LB Park had changed some, but this concrete hole was still there.  On the left is Kayley in 2012, and on the right was Saturday.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

First Graders

Today was the first day of first grade for the girls.  They are in the same class again this year.  We considered separating them and Olivia didn't care but Kayley wanted to be together and we decided it would be fine because they are really good about doing their own thing and not being too clingy with each other.

I had to go to work right after they got on the bus and Paul gets home right before they do so he met them at the bus stop.  I was sad to not be there but since I couldn't work Monday (Labor Day) I really needed to work today.  It's good that I can go in late enough to put them on the bus in the morning and Paul's home when they get back so we don't need any kind of childcare now, except for breaks, conferences, etc.

Signs say "1st" and "Grade".  Love the Band-Aid.

Olivia, neighbor Geet, neighbor and BFF Abby, Kayley

Friday, August 29, 2014

End of Summer Fun

So I've mentioned on here that we haven't hardly done anything fun all summer, other than our usual 3 or so trips to Crescent Bar and a little camping that got cut short due to extremely hot weather and heat related illness (Kayley), but last week Paul took Thursday and Friday off and we finally got out and did some fun things.

On Thursday we took the girls out to lunch at The Old Spaghetti Factory and then to the Pacific Science Center.  They had an awesome butterfly exhibit, and we saw a cool 3D IMAX film about lemurs in Madagascar.

The girls ordered these Cotton Candy Limeade drinks.  They ate the cotton candy but didn't like the actual drink.  Total waste of $2.75 (x 2)!

On Friday we rented kayaks and paddled around Lake Washington near the UW.  It was so fun.  Paul and I had done it before when I was pregnant with the girls and I'd been wanting to do it again for a few years now so we did.  The girls love it, too.

Last night they had an outdoor showing of Frozen at a neighborhood park.  We brought chairs and blankets and popcorn and had a great time watching the movie outside on a giant screen.

Today is my last non-work day, (not counting the long weekend, of course) before school starts.  We should be doing something fun but instead the girls are at a friend's (not that that's not fun for them, of course) and I'm catching up on housework.  We still might get out later today, though.  We'll see.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Summer Vacation Weeks 5-7

This has been kind of a weird summer.  Here we are 8 weeks in and I have yet to DO anything with the girls, like the spray park or a beach or whatever.  Every single one of my 2 days off per week have been spent either packing to go somewhere or already being somewhere (that, of course, counts as doing something but I just mean I have yet to take them anywhere while we're home, other than going out for frozen yogurt after their dance camp performance), with the exception of week 2 when I had a bad cold and couldn't go anywhere.  Tomorrow and Friday will be the first time all summer that I can finally take them somewhere!  I don't know what we're going to do but I'm just glad we can finally do something!

Week 5

The girls had Frozen Dance Camp.  The girls danced to some of the songs from Frozen, made a cape and a tiara, and listened to the Frozen story (as if they didn't already know it like the back of their hand!).  They had an awesome time and my super sweet friend/neighbor volunteered not only to drive them to and from, since I'd be at work, but also to keep them the rest of the day until Paul got home!  She did that Monday through Wednesday and then I was off on Thursday, which was the last day and they did a little performance for all the parents so I was able to go to that.  They had 3 friends that were in the camp with them.  The one whose mother drove them, and then their other good friends down the street (sisters).  We all went out for frozen yogurt after the performance (see, I guess we did go somewhere!).

Kayley and friend Savannah

Olivia with friends Emma (next to her) and Abby (in background).  Emma and Abby are sisters and live 3 doors down from us.

Kayley, Olivia and Savannah

Controlled Chaos

Week 6

Grandma and Grandpa picked up the girls on Sunday evening and took them to Crescent Bar for the week!  Paul and I were alone until Thursday.  It was nice being able to get ready for work in the morning without having to deal with anyone else and coming home to a quiet house and having a quite dinner.  Wednesday night we had a date night at a pizza place, then Thursday we went out for breakfast before heading to Crescent Bar, stopping at a winery for wine tasting on the way.  We stayed at Crescent Bar until Sunday, then went camping at Lincoln Rock State Park.

We were supposed to say two nights, but Kayley ended up with a touch of heat exhaustion so we ended up going back to Crescent Bar on Monday night so we could have A/C.  We tried spending the day at Lake Chelan but no one was having any fun because of her not feeling well.

Olivia with some friends they made at Crescent Bar

Kayley and our campsite

Olivia decided to take all her clothes out of her suitcase and put them on the clothesline intended for wet towels and bathing suits

The girls doing "photo bombs"

Columbia River at Lincoln Rock State Park

Lake Chelan


Week 7

We got home from Crescent Bar/Lincoln Rock on Tuesday and Paul had the rest of the week off while I returned to work Wednesday through Friday.  He took the girls to the free movie on Thursday (The Smurfs) then Olivia got sick Thursday night so they stayed home on Friday.  We were supposed to go to Lake Tapps for the day with some friends on Saturday but Olivia was still a bit under the weather so instead Paul and Kayley went to our friends' house and I stayed home with Olivia.  She got to feeling better so we went out to dinner at the local Mexican restaurant and then got pedicures.  That didn't go over well with Kayley, as they have both really been wanting to get them so she was very upset that Olivia got one and she didn't.  Duh.  That was stupid of me, but if had taken them at the same time one of them wouldn't have gotten a kid chair because the salon only has one.  I guess one of them would have just had to wait until the other one was finished.  Anyway, now I have to take Kayley soon and she wants me to get one with her but I don't want to pay for another one so soon but she doesn't want to wait so I might just take her and then just get my polish changed and not do the whole shebang.

4 more weeks until school starts!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Life as a Working Mom

So I've been at my job for about 3 months now and all I can say is I'm glad it's only part-time (not that it has to be-I could work full-time if I wanted but I don't want to until the girls are in school full time).  I can barely keep up with laundry and other household chores--I honestly don't have a clue how full-time working mothers do it (the ones without housekeepers, that is) and my hat goes off to them.  Here was my Wednesday evening, as an example:

I got home from work at 6:30.  I don't go in until 9:00 to minimize the time we have to pay a babysitter (Paul works from 6:30 to 3:00), so I don't leave work until 5:30ish.  This particular day I left at 5:40.  I helped finish dinner, ate, then I cleaned up while Paul and the girls went for a bike ride.
After cleaning up from dinner, I swept the floor, did a load of laundry and went outside to water plants.  While outside Paul and the girls came back, and the girls and I played in the yard for a bit (mostly just sitting in the grass while they climbed on me, which was the only few minutes of relaxing that day until much later).

By now it was almost 9 and the girls still needed a bath, so I gave them a quick bath and finally got them to bed at 9:30, at which time I showered.  After my shower I started getting the next night's dinner ready, then had to make lunches for the girls (they had dance camp all week and ate lunch there).  At 10:30 I was finally finished with all that and even though I should have just gone to bed I watched TV until 11:00, because that is just part of my nightly wind-down routine.

Luckily it's not like that every night (I don't usually have to make lunches, for one thing) but it's still pretty crazy just trying to keep the house in order and figuring out the next night's meal and all.  Sometimes I make a few things ahead so Paul can just put something in the oven but then I end up spending a good chunk of my Sunday preparing food.  No fun.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Summer Vacation Weeks 2-4

Our summer vacation has been pretty boring so far.  The girls have fun playing with their friends every day but we have yet to really go do anything (splash park, beach, lake, etc.) because of my working 3 days a week and so far my days off have all involved packing/getting ready to go to Crescent Bar, except for week 2 when I had a bad cold so still couldn't do much.

Week 2

Monday through Wednesday - I worked, girls with babysitter but played with friends a lot.
Thursday - wanted to take them up to see my mom but I had a bad cold so stayed home and cleaned while they played with friends off and on.
Friday - More of the same.  We were going to go to Target and a few other places but realized the booster seats were in Paul's car.

Week 3

Monday - work/babysitter
Tuesday - work/babysitter
Wednesday work/babysitter, then birthday party at friend's down the street
Thursday - Another day off spent packing for Crescent Bar, but we did get out and run some errands and get hair cuts.
Friday - Annual 4th of July community celebration with pony rides, face painting, bouncy houses, etc. then BBQ/party at a neighbors.

Saturday morning we left for Crescent Bar and stayed until Tuesday.

Week 4

Monday - At Crescent Bar
Tuesday - Home from Crescent Bar, another birthday party down the street.
Wednesday - I worked and the girls spent the whole day at a friend's.
Thursday - work/babysitter
Friday - work/babysitter, then Paul took them to Rattlesnake Lake when he got home.

Next week is Frozen Dance Camp (dance camp, where the theme will be the movie "Frozen").  A few of their friends are doing it also and they are going to love it.  And since I have to work M-W, one of their friend's moms is going to drive them there and keep them after until Paul gets home from work, so we don't need to have a babysitter all week.