Monday, May 18, 2015


I'm sick and feel like I'd like to curl up and die so obviously.. B.O.Y.

This is an action shot. He's busy dumping cubies and hitting things with his olaf bat while I sit here, practically laying on the table, waiting for their tatertots to finish baking. At least he's quiet and not hitting his sister. I'm calling it a sick day win.

Just waiting for hubs to finish his painful commute I can tag out... sorry babe!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


So by now you're probably aware that I'm more likely to write when things go wrong than when they go right....

Tires. TIRES. Seriously, why must tires plague me so? I'm always getting nails in my tires or they're leaking for no reason. Recently they've taken to skidding in the rain. NOT COOL. Saturday we took the Rogue in for it's checkup and it as it turns out... we're still running on the original tires despite having over 50,000 miles on the car. Erm.. oops? No one ever suggested needing new tires. They kept passing the state inspection and every time I got a new nail in one Nissan just plugged the hole instead of replacing the tire. I think one tire had 4 plugs in it. Is that safe? 

I asked them to price up a new set for me and told them I'd make an appointment this week to get the new ones on. 

Sunday: Torrential rain. Mark's driving home. Handling is horrible. Skid light even comes on at one point.

Monday: I don't schedule the appointment yet because the tires they'd recommended were getting bad reviews online and I wanted to do some more research. Plus it's not raining so I'm not worried.

Tuesday: The low pressure light comes on in the car. I head to the gas station and fill them up. Three were at 28psi instead of 33 but the back passenger tire was at 23. I drive to Raleigh and home again. Everything seems fine. Still no rain, no need to panic. I ask dad to recommend tires and he finds a set he thinks I should get at Just Tires, but it was a long busy day and I still haven't made an appointment.

Wednesday: Get kids loaded into the car. Preschool, baby gym, playdate, starbucks. It's going to be a fun morning. Car feels funny... like uneven funny... drive out of neighborhood. Low pressure light comes on. Car is not happy. I'm worried. Really don't want to drive on the rim but Sheetz is sooo close. Know I can get there... HOPE I can get there. Jessica is prattling on about whether I think Tinkerbell is real and how she wants to have her next birthday party at Disney World. I try not to bite her head off and remind her that Tinkerbell is NOT real, death grip on steering wheel. (We've had the Tinkerbell conversation sooo many times.) Say prayer to God out loud that we make it to the gas station. I think Jessica finally gets the point. Back tire is at 16psi. I fill it back up to 33. Do I go the dealership who might not have my tires in stock but have a place for the kids to play or do I drive past them to get to Just Tires who I know have my tires...?? I drive on. Ugh.

Of course they're busy. Of course these tires cost more than the ones at the dealership (they're special rain tires though so I hope they're worth it!) I ask how long it'll be. The guy tells me an hour an half. Well there goes our morning and any hope of getting Jessica to school today.

We walk across the street and spend an hour in Kohls. AN HOUR. With a toddler and a 5 year old. I pretty much let them decimate the toy section for 30 minutes and then we tidy it all up again. We come out of Kohls and my car hasn't moved. They haven't even started yet! Ugh. 

Walk over to the Dollar Tree. Promise both children balloons. Jessa spends 20 minutes trying to decide with $1 piece of junk she wants. Gabriel wants to throw himself from the trolley. I start to lose my mind. Finally get to check out. Gabriel gets a spiderman balloon and J gets a heart. The checkout lady ties Jessica's to her wrist while I tie G's to his belt loop. Gabriel freaks. The WORLD IS ENDING. He wanted to hold his own balloon, tying it down is the worst punishment ever. Howls of rage. I am 'that' mom with the squalling toddler. Trying to console Gabriel and get his balloon out the door I don't notice that Jessica is messing with hers and it's loose. We walk out the door. Poof. Pink heart balloon heads for heaven. I can see the tears in her eyes. She's about to lose it. I quickly promise a new balloon if she can hold it together until I get Gabriel changed. She takes a deep breath. Oh did I mention? Somewhere along the line Gabriel pooped and there's no wipes in the diaper bag... they must be in the car with ALL THE SNACKS AND DRINKS.  (Yes you read that correctly I'm trying to entertain a 1 year old and a 5 year old with NO SNACKS!)

Walk to the grocery store. I guess I could have bought snacks here but was I thinking straight? No? I had to buy wipes and change a poopy toddler. [He's still angry the balloon is attached to his belt loop.] 

Walk back to the Dollar Tree. Buy replacement balloon for Jessica because I'm nice like that and it really wasn't her fault. 

Walk back to Just Tires. Gabriel doesn't want to walk. He seems to to suddenly weigh 50lbs. Car is not done. Not Done. arrrrrgh! Kids squabble over the tiny bat and ball we got a Kohls. Gabriel runs amuk. Do you ever have the feeling that if you could just tie your hair back things would be easier to deal with? Mine is everywhere, but you know what? My hair claw is IN THE BLOODY CAR! You know what baby boy? Cry. Maybe they'll work quicker. 

Jessica is hungry. She starts to pout. Begs me to take the balloon off her wrist. I tie it to the diaper bag. She sits in the chair and while I try to stop Gabriel from smashing in the vending machine with his new bat, she kicks the balloon and it separates from the string........ seriously? It floats to the ceiling. The super high, like not even a really tall man standing on a chair could reach it, high ceiling. Hmm... no sympathy left. Sorry J. No more balloon. This time it was all your fault. 

I ask about how much longer. He doesn't give me a time but says soon. It's already been 2 and half hours. The wifi in their store doesn't work and for some reason it's a cellular black spot so I can't even resort to youtube videos for the kids. I'm going to die. Should I just take the kids a couple blocks over for lunch? He assures me "soon." I don't like soon. It's too vague.

FINALLY they pull the car around. He checks me out. Price is lower than expected.... wait. I don't see the warranty on the receipt that we agreed on. He didn't add it. He wants to know if he should go back and add it now. So he can rerun the bill, print new papers, spend 10 more minutes in this store. No. Thank. You. I told him I'd call him tonight if I decide I still want it. (I kinda do want it because I have such bad luck with tires.... but I don't know if I can bring myself to deal with them again.)

We head for the hills. Jessica and Gabriel split the lunch I'd packed her for school. 

After leaving this morning at 9am we're finally home by 1. Gabriel almost instantly goes down for a nap, and because I have very little active parenting left in me Jessica is watching Rescue Bots. I try to decompress. I'm off to make a cup of tea now. Hopefully tomorrow will be better (and my tires will still have air in them.)

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Electronics With Jessica

Another guest post from Mark.

Jessica and I have been playing with some electronics lately.  A number of months ago I backed a Kickstarter campaign for the Circuit Scribe Maker Kit.  It's this neat concept where you get a special pen with conductive ink and you can draw out any circuit you like.  The maker kit then adds a set of magnetic components that attach to the paper you drew on by having a metal sheet behind it, with LEDs for the blinkey lights, a buzzer, a 555 timer and number of other components.  There's also an educational workbook that teaches you basic concepts and what each of the pieces do.

After I recorded her playing with it some, she insisted that we should make a video for "the Facebook people".  I was surprised at what a natural she was, even calling out some "safety tips" :)

Checkout the results below (be warned though, it's the full, unedited 15 minutes of 5 year old exposition).  What do you think, should she have her own Youtube channel?

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Minion Party Prep

Okay, well she turned 5 almost a month ago but hey I'm getting there. (She's lucky I even let her turn 5. I think I might have been happy for her to stay 4 forever.) So to catch up - here's a recap of her party.

This year she was a bit Minion crazy and everyone knows a theme makes party planning easier, erm I mean more involved, so we ran with it.

 The little love posters actually came with the Valentines we'd bought this year. Each balloon was tied to a cake pop that we sent home as favors. Oh my gosh. HATED making cake pops but did learn something. Mark husband is in love with cake pops. He'd never had one before and now often asked when I making them again. Silly man. I think I added too much oil to my melted chocolate and they would not set. The glitter sugar just kept falling off with globs of chocolate. Thankfully these do not actually have to look pretty to taste good.

 Cupcakes that looked fabulous but tasted like yuck. Box cake mix and by altering the strawberry frosting from last year without actually figuring out a way to compensate for the lack of strawberry syrup first left the taste a bit lacking. Thankfully 5 year olds aren't picky. They tasted like sugar and were thus devoured.

 My minion 5! Honestly I no idea what to do with it now that the celebrations are over. It's kinda a bit much to keep around as random decor.

 The waters! Loved these mini squirt waters. I learned my lesson from last year. These are un-spillable! I hate that the one label I cut too small was in the front row for pictures... I'm sure this bothers only me.

 PX41 Serum (grape juice) which turns the minions into purple rage monsters and the Antidote (lemonade) to change them back. The plasma ball was Mark's last minute addition. He thought it would make the kitchen more like Dr. Nefario's lab. (I was just excited he wanted to contribute to party prep!!) Apparently I didn't get a good picture of my minion cups. Aren't the cute?? I just printed minion goggles (and after a small war with my silhouette cameo) had a machine cut them out for me.

Coloring, tattoo and hat station. A party isn't a party without a bowl of m&ms somewhere.

Birthday girl had a fabulous time! Hopefully I'll get a sec to come back and write about the actual party in a few days. :D

Poor Gabriel, I may have reached my "pinterest" party threshold and might be straight back to a backyard bbq for his birthday in July.

Monday, March 9, 2015

project updates

Super quick update just to let you know what happened to my early year momentum.


It's still happening, though almost all the photos are phone pics now. They're uploading to my cloud and trapped on my phone simultaneously. I can't get to them to actually edit because my computer is out of hard drive space. Like completely. Totally. I just tried to take a screen shot to show you my hard drive capacity and current use. It would not let me because I don't even have enough space for that photo. I deleted a few pictures but virtual memory consumed every tiny megabyte I freed.

Project 52

Gabriel broke my virtually indestructible SD card so I don't have a card for my camera. I'm in contact with Samsung. I've mailed them back the bent card and they're in the process of getting me a replacement. Note: do not leave your sd card in the reader, in the usb slot in your computer, WHILST your computer is resting on the arm of the sofa. Yeaaaah. He pushed the computer off the sofa and destroyed both the card and the card reader. My super amazing 64gb Samsung Pro card! *sob sob*

Now I'm off to bake some banana bread with my little while the littlest is still asleep!  (also I'm hoping a restart will give me enough memory to open more than a web browser.)

Monday, March 2, 2015

Lactation Cookies

A couple of my friends have had babies recently. Adorable babies. So what to do? Cookie time! I lived off these lactation cookies in the weeks after Gabriel was born. Thankfully my mother can bake! In hindsight the large glasses of milk I downed with these cookies were wreaking havoc with my baby boy's dairy intolerant belly.... if only I knew then what I know now.

After we collected Jessica from school we got straight to work. 

Baking cookies with a toddler is not an easy task. To quote Jessica, "Gabriel shouldn't be baking. He's too little." 

One extremely messy kitchen later we have cookies! Now to box them up and deliver them to the new mommies. Hopefully they enjoy them as much as I did. Jessica thinks they should be dinner.

If you want to print this as a recipe card just right click, save as, resize to your preference and print. :) ps. You don't have to be lactating to enjoy these cookies! They're just packed with good for you yummies.
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