Our long weekend (or really, our week, since Andrew took some time off) was pretty kicked-back and relaxed, which was much needed. Somewhere in that week we celebrated our 2-year marriage anniversary, saw The Dark Knight (awesome, amazing, run to your nearest theater), and took the kidlets to the boardwalk. We had lunch at a little Mexican place, walked around downtown Santa Cruz, the mall, and downtown Capitola, drove around and listened to music and went to Dairy Queen (Snickers-Butterfinger Blizzard = heaven in a cup) all CHILD-FREE. I really needed that. I miss spending time alone with Andrew, when we can just enjoy one another without having to wipe boogers/change diapers/raise little humans. We get along so nicely at those times… it gives me hope that maybe when the kids are grown and gone, my husband won’t have died years before from blunt force trauma mysteriously poisoned dinner um, stress? The hope is that we will still get along and will be able to enjoy the rest of our lives. Days to ourselves really remind us that we care about one another, and that there was a time (before babies and bills) when our love was simple. I’m thinking we should definitely implement a Date Day. At least once a month, because the days following are blissful, and the stress relief is unimaginable. Unless you have two (or however many) small children of your own, and then you likely know EXACTLY what I’m talking about.

So, rambling aside, this last week was a pretty good one. The kids had a blast and I am not plotting my husband’s demise at present (this is subject to change). Back to work for everyone today! Back to laundry and exploding poop diapers. To dishes and grocery shopping and chicken nuggets on the run. My sister came over after work and came with us to Target and Winco, and that was pretty awesome. An extra pair of hands to baby-wrangle or toddler-threaten is always a plus.

Side note: Hypothetically, if your mother-in-law was terrifyingly like Marie Barone a la Everybody Loves Raymond, what would you do? Hypothetically?

P.S. This post was really all over the place, because my thoughts are mostly fragmented at present. Thank you, Firefox spell check, for keeping me from looking like a TOTAL idiot. Instead, I’m only sort of an idiot.

P.S.S. More coherent thoughts brewing. I think. I hope! While you wait, gaze upon my way-cute children.

Sweet Lia Bee Cheeeese!


I’m going to be so thrilled once Christmas is over. THRILLED. Not because I’m a Scroogey McGrinchpants (although, that may also be true), but because the strain of Christmas shopping and Christmas dinner and Christmas wrapping paper and Christmas sparkle may kill me. And because my in-laws are dead set on us going to Andrew’s grandmother’s on Christmas day. It’s a two hour trip there, and back. Frankly, I don’t want to go. I’m six and a half (oh, the half totally counts and don’t you defy me) months pregnant and I just want to lay on the couch and take pictures of my baby toddler (tear) playing with her new kitchen. Also, Alaina is going to be pissed when we remove her from her beloved new toys to make her sit in the car for a couple of hours, then spend a bunch of time with people she’s only met maybe once (Andrew’s grandmother and aunts). Wee. Excitement.

My other current gripe is that there are no good baby names in the world. In the WORLD, I tells ya! Andrew is uninterested with helping to name baby the second since I was such a lovely woman last time and pointed out why each and every one of his suggestions was horrific. He’s not completely detached from the naming process; he vetoes every name I come up with. It’s almost enough to make me stop caring and just name her Toaster Oven or Rainbow Sunskittle. Almost. Alaina’s name is just so perfect, so perfect for her and so pretty. How can you manage to do that twice?

On the agenda for the rest of the afternoon is gift wrapping, house cleaning, and baby wrangling followed by Christmas decorating, and possibly even more cleaning. Followed by some much-needed cajoling with the wonderful Shannon, who is delivering garland for my stair rails because she rocks. Maybe I’ll even make some brownies for us to stuff our faces with while we decorate. Fa la la la la, chocolate is the answer.

I can’t believe Christmas is almost here. Again. Breathing down my neck. Whispering in my ear. It says, “Spend money. Alaina needs three thousand toys, new pajamas, a pony, and a partridge in a pear tree.” And the sad part is that I obey like a trained dog begging for a biscuit. Not to mention that my FIL has his birthday on the 7th, my nephew’s birthday is on the 12th, Shannon’s birthday is on the 20th, which is also the same day as my sorta-anniversary (our dating anniversary). Then of course there is Christmas, then my dad’s birthday on the 30th, and then it’s Alaina’s birthday January 16th. Can we say GIFTING OVERLOAD? Sweet Jeebus.

Luckily, I have most of my gifting already worked out because I am so super neurotic like that. Shannon I think I’m all done shopping for, Alaina has more than enough gifts in the gift closet but that won’t stop me from buying a bunch more. I have no idea what to get my FIL… but shouldn’t that be Andrew’s problem? He’s not my dad. And it’s not so much that I just don’t care as it is that I am not a man, not this particular man’s son, and don’t have any effing CLUE what he would want. Not that it won’t end up my fault on the day before when we have no card, no gift, and still no clue. Because, you know. I am WIFE. It’s my “job” put on my little apron and bake pies and tend the wee ones and write cute notes on birthday cards. And be a mind-reader. And expert gifter! What? I became telepathic when I said my vows. Didn’t you?

In other news, today I mopped the floor. A lot. A WHOLE EFFING LOT OF FLOOR MOPPING. It takes a really long time to clean the floor when you a) are infected with a kicking fetus who is also pissed that you dare bend over, b) mother to an almost two-year-old who wants to know the golden, sparkly secret surrounding The Great Mysterious Bucket, and c) a little bitter because your husband is fishing and you are having a spectacular day alone with factor a and b. After I mopped, I did some dishes. Then I sat down and hoped that I could just sleep. Alaina took that opportunity to poke me in the eye, because I am no use to her if I’m sleeping on the job (and really, the nerve of me).

Then Andrew came home and made a mess in the newly cleaned kitchen. (Insert murderous laugh here.)

Halloween was wonderful. Alaina and I had lots of fun touring our neighborhood on her first official candy quest. At first, she was extremely offended that some STRANGER tried to put STUFF in HER beautiful, precious, coveted pumpkin bucket. It didn’t take her more than a minute to recognize that it was, in fact, not poison or spiders but quite the opposite; CANDY! At the next house, she refused to say trick-or-treat, but cautiously held out her bucket. When there again came no tricks and only treats, she was excited for the next house, and after that third house, she was unstoppable. A couple unsuspecting neighbors even held out their entire treat bowl to her and let her pick what she wanted. She, of course, chose as many candies as her little hand could hold. It’s a good thing she’s so cute.

I decided it was time to end the festivities when after each house, she stopped to sit on people’s lawns and take inventory of her spoils.

Trick or Treat!

Trick or Treat!

Alllrighty… anyone have any potty training advice for me? I think I’m doing everything right, but it’s hard to be sure since we seem to be making little to no progress. Anything that “worked like a charm” or a miracle book I could read? I would love to have Alaina potty-trained before baby two arrives on the scene, but so far, not so good.