Monday, August 30, 2010

free vacation

This weekend we stayed at some friends' house while they were away. There is so much to do in Orange County, so it was nice to stay local and not make the trek back and forth. We had a wonderful weekend, topped off a great celebration of Cam's 4th birthday today.

Saturday we stopped by Chris's brother's family and hung out a while. Once we got to our house, we played at the nearby park and relaxed after the kids were in bed. Cam was so excited to sleep in his, "top bed" since it was his first experience with bunk beds.



On Sunday, we started out early at the park, then headed to The Grove after Kendall's nap. Chris had always wanted to go and it was fun to walk around and see the Farmer's Market. I couldn't resist taking a pic of my two, coordinating guys.



That evening we had one of my dearest friends, Karen, and her family over for dinner. We rarely get to see one another since our friendship is almost entirely through email, so it was fun to actually spend time with her and her family.



This morning I burst into Cam's room whooping and hollering about his 4th birthday. We walked to the store to get his special birthday donut. The rest of the day was spent at Disneyland, accompanied by both my parents. It was beautiful weather and the summer crowds were gone for the most part. Kendall hadn't been in a while so it was fun to see her enjoy It's a Small World. We were planning on spending another night, but decided to head home so Chris could get a full days' work in tomorrow since we are heading up to his parents' on Friday. It was a fun weekend and a great way to celebrate my little guy's birthday.

p.s. I just had to take a pic of Kendall when we arrived home. I was throwing food back at her left and right to keep the happiness going. There was food in crevices of that seat I didn't even know existed. What a MESS!!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

we are off...hopefully

Today we went to visit some friends out in Palm Springs. They have a beautiful vacation house and Cam had a blast swimming with their two boys. I stayed inside with Kendall as she got a nasty bug all of the sudden. She has a high temp, nasty bowel movements, and is very lethargic. The only good thing is that she is super cuddly, which I love. But obviously the cuddling is NOT worth how bad she feels.

Hopefully she can get a good night's sleep and feel better tomorrow. We are supposed to head out to some friends' house (they will be out of town and are letting use their home) for a few days. They live in Orange County, so we thought it would be nice to be close to the beach, Disneyland, and other fun things for a few days. Hopefully the weather will be better also. It's been so humid lately and at the end of each day, we are all sticky, greasy with sunblock, and stinky!

Here is a cute pic from today. Cam LOVED riding in the golf cart with his little pals. :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

marsala


I've been wanting to make this recipe for a while, due to my sister's rave reviews. Here are a few emails between us:

Me: I have all the ingredients for that Carmela's rigatoni thing, except Marsala wine. I can't find it at two grocery stores. Can I use just plain red or white cooking wine?

Susan: NO!!!! It MUST be Marsala. Really, it must!!! The stores really should have it – but you probably need to ask. We did here. It was one bottle out of a million.

Me: Darn you and your Marsala. I've now looked at three grocery stores and even talked to the wine expert at one. He had never heard of it. Grrr.....

Has anyone who doesn't live in Germany know where to find Marsala wine???? :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

80/20



Today I decided to take Cam and Kendall to the McDonald's play area after I picked him up from school. Sidenote: I used to think fast food play areas were a little nasty and full of gross germs. Let's be honest, they probably ARE full of gross germs but, 1. They are super fun for the kiddos and 2. That's what hand sanitizer is for, right?.

Anyway, we had a great time and Cam found a friend to play chase with the majority of the time. However about 30 minutes in, a girl accidentally ran into Kendall, knocking her down. And it began. She wasn't hurt much at all, but continued crying due to being scared. Cam immediately got very upset, yelling (I mean so loud most of the restaurant just sat and stared...literally) and yelling, "Why is sissy crying?" I'll admit it was embarrassing, mainly because everyone was wondering why on earth he was upset. Everyone saw that HE wasn't the one to fall down.

Anyway, we left shortly after because that incident ruined his play mood. After coming home and playing for a while upstairs, Kendall did something (not even sure what) that caused her to cry briefly. This happened a few more times, sending Cam over the edge. He isn't destructive, naughty, nor angry when this happens...he is just extremely anxious and can't focus on anything. It was rough.

As I was sitting in the moment, I desperately tried to list all the wonderful things about our day. Kendall was so cute and super happy all morning while Cam was at school. Cam had a great day at school. Cam played with another little boy at McDonald's...which is always HUGE. Cam and Kendall had a wonderful time at McDonald's, for the most part. There were many other great things about our day. So why is it that the 20% of my day that didn't go well soooo overshadows the rest? Why can't I focus on the good 80% and let THAT dictate my mood? I guess it is something that I will always strive for.

Monday, August 23, 2010

pure cuteness

It's nice to have my men back today, but Kendall and I sure had some fun times this weekend. She is just too cute...

Sunday, August 22, 2010

frapp



Today Kendall and I went to Super Target to kill some time. I treated myself to Starbucks. I must admit that lately I've been going to Starbucks, as opposed to McDonalds (for their Frappe), only because I have a Starbucks card. I feel like it is the end of an era for me (started back in college). I just don't love the frapps like I used to. I'm pretty sure the reason is that they changed their formula when they went to the, "however you like it" concept. It's just not the same. I have found the only redeeming one, a 2% coffee frapp. Other than that, I feel let down by my beloved Starbucks. Who would have thought McDonalds would replace you???

p.s. Sidenote: Hope this isn't TMI, but I purchased a package of pantyliners today at Target. I had never noticed that they bag them separately. Very odd, right?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

girls weekend

This weekend was/is another girls weekend for Kendall and I as Chris and Cam headed up to his parents' yesterday. Normally I drive out to OC and visit a friend, but I decided to stick around here. Friday we went to Victoria Gardens for a few hours. This morning we baked some of these cookies that I've blogged about before. This time I used chocolate chip cookie dough instead and they were wonderful.




Later, after being down for over an hour without any sign of sleep, I got Kendall up from her "nap" and we headed out to Palm Springs (BTW-she fell asleep on the way). I figured even though Chris and Cam weren't here, I would still do our regular weekend outing. So we first started out at Costco, where we both enjoyed some yummy samples.



Next we hit the mall and were there for a long time. She wore me out walking around everywhere, but it was nice to be out of the heat. I realized that while the best option to be thrifty is to not bring your wallet to the mall, the next best option is to go with a 15 month old. She really provides zero opportunity for browsing. :)

On the way home, we went by Petco to see some dogs (it was adoption weekend), however we got there right after they left. :( We hung out for a while at home, then she went to bed VERY early due to her crappy nappy day. Right now I'm about to have some dinner and watch a made for TV movie on Hallmark. Tomorrow we'll head to church and then see what outing I can think up. :)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

dr. laura


I've had a few people email me about my feelings regarding Dr. Laura and her decision to not renew her contract (after over 30 years on radio). At first I was pretty bummed, however Chris informed me that she is moving to podcasts, which is what I listen to anyway. I never listen to her live. I sure do hope she keeps her fan base, or even enlarges it. I've lost track as to how many women have called in and told her that her advice saved their marriages. She has done so much good in that area so hopefully that continues. :) I've never really cared about peoples' opinion that she is, "too harsh". Get over it. Her advice is typically spot on, so just take her message and ignore it's delivery if you can't handle her bluntness (hmmm...maybe that bluntness has rubbed off on me). :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

highlights of the day

Kelly: The 10ish minutes Cam and Kendall spent together in her room. He was jumping off the laundry basket to make her laugh. We can get pretty lenient about his wild play if it involves interaction between the two of them. I LOVED listening in at the door and hearing him say things like, "Watch this!".

Cam: Daddy putting my car seat in the front seat (yes, this is legal. No, we have never done it before. We only did it today because we had to fit a bike in the back which I was delivering to my parents).

Kendall: I had a great, non-constipated poop this morning. Pretty exciting.

Chris: Hearing Cam ask where his friend, Seth, was when I dropped him off at school. Love that he has kids he looks forward to seeing each day.

Kendall: Our neighbors installed a new fountain on their front porch. She even texted my mom with a pic because she knew I would like to play with it.

Cam: Having Nana read books to me at Barnes and Noble.

Kelly: My daily relaxing time during Kendall's nap, involving a cup of French Vanilla and some emailing.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

weekend

Yesterday our friends, Matt and Jana, came out to stay with us. We met at Victoria Gardens. They were troopers and walked around in the heat and did our usual routine of playtime and Bass Pro Shop visiting. When we got home, we hung out for a while and then had dinner. After dinner, the three of us (Chris stayed home with the kids) drove to our friend's wedding. I've known Ruth since I was in 7th grade and I was soooo happy for her. The wedding was beautiful and we had a great time seeing a few old friends from college.

This morning after Matt and Jana left, we went to church where Kendall gave me success #2 in the nursery. Afterward, Chris and Cam went to watch the remote control car races down the road. They couldn't stay too long because it was very hot. I made Cam bring his hat since we just shaved his head. Poor thing was dripping sweat. Right now we are relaxing a bit before heading out to Palm Springs for our Costco/lunch and mall day. Yes, I realize it is even hotter than where we are, but A) We are inside mostly and B) What else are we going to do all afternoon??? :)

Tonight is Chris's splurge meal night. He has really been hitting the gym hard and eating really well. He allows himself one splurge meal a week and he usually likes to save it for the weekend. Tonight's menu? Kraft Mac and cheese with added shredded cheese, bacon, green onions, and hot dogs. Dessert: Rite Aid for him and Frugos for me.

Friday, August 13, 2010

almond butter


Since Cam eats peanut butter like it's his job, I decided to try Almond Butter simply because almonds are so good for you and he won't eat them plain. The verdict? I don't think Almond Butter is that tasty. It isn't very salty (which I love about PB) and I just don't think the flavor is very good. The good news, however, is that Cam can't tell a difference. :)

p.s. I must give a very random side note to those who live in the Redlands area. Today we met a friend and her kids at Ford Park. As Kendall was wandering about, I discovered a 5 inch lobster (Chris said it was maybe a craw fish???) crawling across the grass. Going to be honest and say it was a little freaky. What if I had been over with Cam and not been right there with her? It was just a large grassy field, after all. Yikes! So beware if you are at that park. Here is the pic I took with my phone. Don't those pinchers look nasty?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

*Did I really see Halloween decorations at Costco this week? I'm not complaining. :)

*Went to our church's Wacky Wednesday this morning. My mom met me at church and took Kendall to her house to nap. Cam and I had a great time! They had three rooms all with stations of different activities/games.

*My little Kendall screamed today more than she has in the last few months. I've never seen her so constipated. I realized I have been feeding her more bananas than normal (I put them in her food trap for her to suck on while we are on walks).

*Going to a friend's wedding this weekend. I own one pair of heels, which are black. I've never been into heels. For some dumb reason, I always feel like I'm trying to be older and more mature and I feel kind of silly

*Loving the show, "Raising Sextuplets". Chris likes it too.

*Chris went to see the new Will Ferral movie tonight with a friend. Can't beat $2.50 Wednesdays! I think I'll take advantage of him being gone and go to bed at 8.

*I'm currently down one food trap and one of Kendall's shoes. Whenever we go on walks, I get so engrossed in my Dr. Laura that I fail to see when she tosses one out the stroller. Grrr...

*Chris joined a local gym and is really enjoying it. Sometimes I miss going to the gym. But when I really think about it, would I really use my precious nap times to work out? Probably not.

*Cam turns 4 in a few weeks!!!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

deli


One of my top 5 favorite foods is a REALLY good sandwich. This involves amazing bread, lots of mayo, sharp cheese, and good meat (but not too much...that grosses me out). Chris has also really been into sandwiches lately for his lunches. The problem? Deli meat is so darn expensive! Where do you find good deals on deli meat? I don't want to buy the nasty cheapo stuff that's probably mostly nitrates, yet I don't want to spend $6.99 a pound at the deli counter.

p.s. I thought this was such a cute picture this morning. In my attempts to find things to occupy our day, I came up with the toothpick game (wow...oh so creative). I gave Cam some toothpicks so he could float them down the "river" (aka, gutter). Kendall wanted in on the action. I can already see my sister's lips smirk in disapproval. But Susan, I think the birds won't be tempted to pick up the toothpicks...they are smart enough to sense they are wood, not food. :)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

our saturday

This morning Chris and Cam went to Home Depot for their craft time. Home Depot does this once a month and it was such a neat experience. Today they made a school bus pencil holder. Kids get an apron their first time, then a pin each time the come back.




After Kendall's nap, we headed out to Palm Springs. After lunch at Costco, we went to the mall to walk around. Kendall loved just being able to walk all over the place without us holding her hand. Here we are in Barnes in Noble, where she enjoyed taking books off the shelves.



After coming home, we hung out for a while and Chris left to go watch the UFC fight with some friends. I'm in the middle of catching up on a little Gilmore Girls.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

spaghetti fest

I've blogged before about our huge chicken bakes, where we bbq a bunch of chicken and then freeze each in baggies for later. Chris had the idea of doing something similar for spaghetti. Today we bought ground beef (or "chubs" as the package says) from Costco. For this lean of beef, we found Costco to be the cheapest. We cooked 5 pounds of it, bagged each, and froze. This way, we can simply pop one out, add sauce, and have spaghetti. We usually have it once a week anyway, so this will make things a lot easier. :)



p.s. Tonight we finished up a very good movie I would recommend: The Ghost Writer

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

first day

Today was Cam's first day at his new school. A while back, his special ed teacher and I decided that it would be a great idea to have him attend her class two days a week, then attend a "typical" preschool the other two days. He has made so much progress socially and verbally, however we felt these areas would improve at faster rate if he were to be around "typical" children more (meaning kids who talk and play/interact appropriately).

This morning I took him with the intention of staying a while, just so he could get acclimated. I stayed a whopping 4 minutes. He went right in with me and began playing with the toys. I told him that I would be going and would be back later to pick him up. He responded, "OK, sure!!". What a little champ! When I went to pick him up, he was so happy and his teacher said he did great! I'm very anxious and excited about this new atmosphere for him and I can only imagine the kind of progress we will soon see.

Monday, August 2, 2010

thoughts

One of the many things I've learned from listening to Dr. Laura is that it's the wives/moms who set the tone of the house. If we are naggy, complaining, negative, etc., we bring our entire household down.

People have often asked me, "How do you do it with both you and Chris home all day together? Don't you go crazy?" Fortunately not only do I not go crazy, but I love it and wouldn't have it any other way. However it does bring a few difficulties.

We, as moms, can go through 10 different moods in one day. I'm sure I'm not the only one who has returned from an outing gone wrong with the kids. We are exhausted, frustrated, and many times full of tears. Typically when this happens, by the time the husband returns home from a day at the office, hopefully the wife will have calmed down and be able to be cheerful and welcoming.

Sometimes it is difficult for Chris because he sees EVERY single emotion I go through. Sometimes I have cried after a frustrating outing (like today after a very difficult walk to the store with the kids). This can be hard for Chris because he is also brought down, simply by seeing me sad. However within 30 minutes, I'm back to normal and having a great time again. I try to explain to him that I can go through so many different emotions during the day, and to not take them too seriously. But that is much easier said that done.

So I try hard to remain positive throughout the day. I don't want to stuff my feelings if I'm overwhelmed. And he also doesn't want me to not be able to share when I'm having a hard day. But I also don't want to send him on a roller coaster every day with my ups and downs...a roller coaster he wouldn't experience if he worked outside the house.

So that is the main difficulty with him working from home (besides the obvious distracting noise which comes with kids). While I often fail, I try to keep an upbeat tone around the house because it really can turn into a vicious cycle of me getting sad, which makes him sad, which makes me frustrated that I made him sad...

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Chris left Friday morning for Vegas. Shortly after, I headed over to my parents' and my mom and I went to Victoria Gardens. We had a picnic lunch, let Cam ride the train, and I introduced her to the Bass Pro Shop. Cam loves the boats and was again very excited to get into each one and play around. We headed back and made a quick stop by Frugos before getting home. Whenever Chris is gone, I like to get some yogurt and put it in the freezer for later. It's a nice treat to look forward to once the kids are down. :)



Saturday morning we met some friends (fellow early birds) at the park. Cam had a great time playing and I got to visit. After Kendall's nap, I dropped Cam off at my dad's office since he would be spending the day and night with my parents (he LOVES when he gets to do this). Kendall and I headed out to a friend's house in Orange County (her husband was with Chris in Vegas). We met at a park, then hung out at her place for a few hours. We had such a great time and talked non-stop the entire time.

Kendall and I with Ana and Mia (sorry so blurry)


This morning we went to church to do the Cam exchange. Right now I'm trying to figure out how to keep us busy until Chris arrives home. It sounds like he had another fun trip, made all the more awesome due to the fact that when he played golf yesterday morning, he hit a hole in one!! I didn't realize that many golfers go their entire lives without every doing this. We are all very excited for him. :)

p.s. I want to add that I have been SOO frustrated lately with my driving. Sometimes I feel like I'm the most ditsy driver ever. On Friday, I drove 15 minutes passed Victoria Gardens because my mom and I were talking. Then yesterday, I missed my exit for Ana's house because I was engrossed in a Dr. Laura. Can I not talk and drive at the same time? I do this ALL the time!!