Cracking myself up

I know it’s been forever, but this is worth sharing…

I had to go to Walmart to get my birth control filled tonight. Usually I am a Target girl to the core, however we recently got new health insurance that doesn’t find Tar-jay to be an acceptable pharmacy (how dare you, BCBS!). So to Wally World we went. I had the family wait in the car while I ran in to pick it up. What I thought would be five minutes was probably more like fifteen; since I was a new customer, they had to run all of our info through the system. Yikes.

Pharmacist: “Since you’re a new customer we need to get your phone number.”
Me: “Sure, no problem. 858-867-5309 (ee-ah-eeahheen).”
P: “…and your address.”
Me: “Okay. [blah dee blah streets and numbers. I’m not crazy, y’all. You don’t get my address.]”
P: “Any allergies we should know about?”
Me: “Nope.” At this point I’m picturing my kids tying up my husband like a pig on its way to a roast, offering him up to the Boredom Gods as a sacrifice.
P: “Autorefill?”
Me: “OH MY GOD STOP TALKING Yes, please.”
P: “And would you like call or text reminders for those?”
Me: “Um, text…I’m sorry can we finish this another time? My kids are 1 and 2 and waiting in the car with my husband reenacting the monkey scenes from ‘Jumanji’.”

So she apologizes and finishes up, checking me out quickly. I start to jog out the door before awkwardly slowing to a walk just before I get there, because I have the fleeting thought that people who run out of Walmarts are probably tackled to the ground for stealing things more often than not. So I jog/walk like a Looney Tunes character, all but whistling, then jog again once I’m away from the front of the store.

I dash to the car where my whole family is-shockingly-contentedly listening to music. Still, I feel the need to apologize.

“Sorry, guys. That took longer than I expected it to. Better late than pregnant, right?”

Seriously, you guys. I just laughed at my own joke AGAIN, five hours later. You’re welcome.

20140722-224828-82108237.jpg

Let me take you on an Ice Capade

Fun fact: I definitely thought that Janet Jackson song was “Ice Capade” and not “Escapade” for the longest time. I swear, I hear anything from the Rhythm Nation album and am immediately rocketed back in time to dancing as a four year old in the front seat of my mom’s car while we ate Dum-Dums or Sweet Tarts (she usually had one or the other in her sweet looking brown Cavalier) and danced to the music on the radio. Ah, the good old days of toddler vehicular safety.

Anyway! Last weekend I took Layla to Disney on Ice.  I was so. excited. I fully admit going into this with high expectations, since a) I went to Disney on Ice multiple times as a kid, and b) I used to figure skate, and Disney on Ice was more than likely a major factor in getting me into the sport. I remember going the year that the Little Mermaid came out, and there was a point in the show where Ursula came out on the ice and blew up like a HUGE balloon, like in the movie when she’s going all batty with King Triton’s trident and doing her evil sea witch cackle thing. I, along with every other child in the arena, was absolutely petrified. I was only four or five years old, but I very clearly remember hearing all these kids start screaming and crying hysterically. Ah. Good times. So naturally I wanted my two year old to partake in such an awesome tradition for a special girls’ day out. [You guys, I’m kidding. I knew that these days they would never in their right minds do anything that intense at a kids’ show!]

Girls' Day! (The boys went to Home Depot)

Girls’ Day! (The boys went to Home Depot)

I bought the tickets in the cheap seats, hoping that we’d be far enough down to see everything, and that Layla wouldn’t lose interest in about 5 seconds. We drove to the Valley View Casino Arena, and already I was nervous. First off, you get off the freeway and are greeted by like 4 strip clubs right off the bat. Awesome! Then we pulled around to follow the signs for arena parking. $15, cash only, and I realized we had used the last of my cash the night before. “SHHHH-ugar!” Okay, so I pull out of line and go on a search for an ATM. Then what do I pass at the back of the arena parking lot? A swap meet/flea market…with FREE parking! I saw a bunch of people with little kids in princess dresses and pirate costumes, so I’m figuring they’re not taking them to swap for a cuckoo clock. I pulled in, and started the trek with Layla across to the arena. Now, when I tell you “Valley View Casino Arena” you’re probably picturing something old, tacky, maybe smoky, and now I’ve told you that there’s a SWAP MEET in the back of the parking lot. Yeah. What you’re picturing is probably spot-on.  Cleveland folks: picture if the Coliseum were still in business. About the same.

I’m already thinking, “Ah, man.  This might be a bust.  Layla’s probably not going to let me carry her all the way through the parking lot, and then she’s not going to want to hold my hand if I put her down…” Well nuts to that, because not only was girlfriend happy to be carried, but she also was in a total smooching mood, and kept giggling and holding my cheeks in her hands. AAAdorable. Like, strangers-walking-by-and-smiling-at-us adorable. Then we got up front and got in line for will call ($7.50 convenience fee for print-at-home tickets?! Uhhh. no.). Layla was so good, and chatted with another little girl in line.  For the record, “chatting” means waving saying in a super high voice, “Hi! Hi!” while standing about three inches from that person’s face. Sometimes she overwhelms other children with her outgoing personality!

We got the tickets, got searched, then went inside. She was very excited to hold her own ticket, gave it to the woman scanning tickets at the door, and politely said, “Thank you!” when she gave it back. WHO IS THIS CHILD?! Since she was winning me over, and maybe this was her motive, I stopped inside to get a huge bag of cotton candy. She chose the one with a princess crown on top, and put it on immediately. Then we walked to our seats, and only had to wait about 2 minutes before the show started. Our seats turned out to be perfect, since they were the front row of the upper section, so we had extra room in front of us, and Layla could stand up without blocking anyone’s view. The lights went down and we heard, “Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, say hello to MICKEY and MINNIE!!”

Look at this face!

Look at this face!

OMG, you guys. I died. She jumped out of her seat, and started waving and shouting, “Hi Mickey! Hi Minnie!” She was SO. EXCITED. Goofy and Donald then came out and she shrieked (I’m serious…shrieked), “MAMA!! IT’S GOOFY AND DONALD!!” This was the face I saw as they skated around, and suddenly I realized I would have paid $50 per ticket, instead of the $17, just to see that little face light up again.  I fully admit to tearing up, watching her. It was so worth every penny. Ariel came out for the Little Mermaid segment and she was still pretty excited. One of her favorite Disney DVDs is a Mickey’s Sing Along with Ariel, so she was into it.  At one point she said, “Mama can I want to [Layla speak for, “can I”] go dance?” and I said, “Sure you can dance!” Then she pointed. Oops. “No, Mama, can I want to go dance with the Layla Mermaid [yep, that’s what she calls her]?” So I had to break the news that no, we couldn’t go down on the ice with all the characters. She wasn’t really happy about that, but got over it once Ariel started doing acrobatics from the ceiling. Pretty impressive!

After that her attention started to wander a bit.  This was a princess-themed show, and she’s not really into the princesses as much yet.  She likes to play with princess stuff, but would much rather watch Jake and the Never Land Pirates or Mickey Mouse Clubhouse if she can watch TV.  We made it to intermission and I asked if she wanted to go. She said no, so I took her to the bathroom with me. Again, she waited patiently and chatted with other little kids in line. Then when we got to the front of the line she said, “Mama I have to go potty.” I assumed it was just because we were in there, but I’ve been trying to be supportive and let her go whenever she asks (even when I know for a fact she doesn’t have to go), so I plopped her down on the seat…AND SHE WENT! So there I was, shrieking what a great job she did in the middle of a public bathroom as she giggled at my theatrics. This was turning out to be the BEST. DAY.

After intermission was over I think the cotton candy started to kick in, because suddenly she couldn’t sit still and was starting to get a little wild. I was trying to keep her from bouncing off the walls, and the Brave segment of the show is really where we lost her. As it was ending she said she wanted to go see Daddy, and I asked if she wanted to leave. She said yes, so off we went. 3/4 of a 2 hour show is pretty impressive to me, so I grabbed our stuff and we were off before the last segment (Beauty and the Beast! Go figure. I was really excited for “Be Our Guest”). We trekked through the parking lot and swap meet again, and headed home. We topped it off with a special trip to McDonald’s, which I’m pretty sure just kicked everything over into “toddler nirvana” territory, and then we came home and she passed out after being in tears because she ripped her tights in the car.

All in all, I’d say the day was a major success, and it was great to do something just the two of us so the kids each got some one-on-one time. I can’t wait to figure out our next adventure!

Pinterest Fail

Does anyone else think that Pinterest is simultaneously the greatest thing to ever happen to the internet, and the Devil at the same time? I mean, they have an entire BLOG about how people try and fail miserably with their pins.  It makes us Moms feel like we have no choice but to throw a perfectly coordinated, Hollywood-style blowout party every time our kid takes a poo on the potty. Crafts, recipes, outfits, nail art–we’re all doomed from the start. That first little click that makes us think, “I could do that!” Wrong. You cannot, in fact, make yourself look like that 19 year old model with hair extensions, a spray tan, and nothing to do but 500 squats and 10 mile runs every day (not to mention the photoshopping). I mean, maybe you could do that if you wanted…but that sure isn’t my reality these days.

So WHY, good reader, did I have the idea last week to go scrounging through my Pinterest boards for dinner ideas for a WHOLE WEEK? Because I’m obviously stupid, that’s why. Because I was frustrated at our totally boring rotation of grilled meat (pork/chicken breasts/steak/burgers) and pasta dishes. Oh, and a little request from me to you: If you’re a pinterest pinner and you’re taking these GORGEOUS photos of your masterpieces that you just cooked, can you just do me a solid and be like, “Yo, these pics are totally gorge…but in all seriousness, don’t make this food. You should save time and dishes and just make your family PB&J for dinner, because that’s what’s going to happen after all of your slaving over a hot moderately functioning stove.”

Let’s walk through the recipes that I chose.  Feel free to thank me for saving you from multiple crappy meals. I take payments in cupcakes and carbs.

Don't be fooled.

Don’t be fooled.

  1. Meatball Subs of Doom: You guys, this one actually made me really sad.  This was a recipe that I pinned from a website because I’d made these before and LOVED them. It was from Clean Eating, but I didn’t exactly stick to the “clean” part, so instead of that tomato sauce in the recipe I just used the jarred variety. But otherwise I loved this recipe. I loved that the meatballs were lean beef (I don’t usually like that weird pork/beef/veal meat mix), and I loved the addition of roasted veggies on top. SO good. Unfortunately my poor little Layla loved them, too, and proceeded to break out in hives from head to toe after chowing down on them (luckily Joey hated them, because his skin is even more sensitive than Layla’s!).  The Peanut’s minor sensitivity to tomatoes was kicked into overdrive by the addition of tomato paste (extra concentrated) in the meatballs, so 30 minutes post-meal I was dealing with a hysterical child covered in hives. She went to bed with a dose of Zyrtec and her face still wet with tears. I went to bed with a heavy heart for causing what ended up being THREE DAYS of rashy patches on her legs. VERDICT: 2/4 Cubbals enjoyed this dish.

    Less than bueno

    Puns can’t even save this dish

  2. Beef Lo Lame: Riddle me this, folks: How can you put 14 (FOURTEEN!!!) cloves of garlic in a dish, and have it taste like nothing but ginger? Seriously, I was SO pissed about this one. If you were talking to my Granny, she’d have said I was “madder than a hornet.” A little backstory on this: about once a year I try a recipe for beef lo mein, in hopes that it will taste like the glorious taste explosion that is the lo mein from Cafe Asia in DC, and it never comes close. I remember telling Jeff that if there was one thing I could eat every day for the rest of my life, this would be the dish (and I’d be the happiest obese woman on the planet). Ironically, I couldn’t STAND the taste of it when I was pregnant with Layla, but I went back to loving it after she was born. Anyway, I digress. I made this dish and it totally sucked. I even dialed back the amount of fresh ginger it called for…because I hate the taste of fresh ginger (good reason, right?). Ugh. Awful. To me, ginger tastes like Lemon Pledge. Not that I’ve ever tasted Lemon Pledge, but I’ve dusted enough in my lifetime to imagine it. In a strange turn of events, the kids both cleared their plates of this dish (except the beef, naturally), but Jeff and I hated it. VERDICT: 2/4 Cubbals

    Less than bueno

    Less than bueno

  3. Just “Meh” Taquitos: Okay, this was by far the best dish of the bunch, but it still left much to be desired.  I really liked that I could make the filling ahead for this one, then wrap them and pop them in the oven later.  This allowed for extra playground time, and I think that was appreciated all around.  Jeff, Joey, and I all ate them (Layla politely took a bite and said, “I don’t like it.”), but we agreed that it needed more of a punch of flavor.  Maybe some diced green chiles next time, extra spices, you could even put some grilled peppers and onions in them and make them like fajita taquitos! They just needed a lot more flavor. VERDICT: 3/4 Cubbals

    Nope. Not even this one.

    Nope. Not even this one.

  4. “WTF?!” Pasta: There’s no getting around it: this was straight up the weirdest dish I’ve ever made.  I looked at the ingredients and thought the Ro-Tel was a little odd, but I went with it because the photos looked SO. FREAKING. GOOD. Like, “Get in mah belleh!” good. But boy, oh boy. This was one hot mess of a dish. I just didn’t get it. First of all, I would like to know the difference between smoked sausage and a hot dog, because I feel like I’ve been bamboozled. I feel like I heated up one giant, inappropriate-looking, glorified hot dog for dinner. I went with the blogger’s suggestion and used turkey smoked sausage, but yeah. Basically a I could’ve used Ballpark. Then the addition of onions (I didn’t even use all that it called for, which was a lot), garlic, Ro-Tel, chicken broth, cream, monterey jack cheese, and pasta. Joe ate a few bites, but even he abandoned ship after a little bit.  This dinner ended in PB&J’s all around. VERDICT: .5/4 Cubbals (accounting for Joe’s moment of acceptance, before realizing his foul)This one actually has potential, though.  Here’s what would do: I’d substitute regular turkey italian sausage for the smoked sausage, canned tomatoes with italian spices for the Ro-tel, 1/2C of onions (maybe 3/4) instead of 1.5C (seriously…that’s crazy), and mozzarella instead of monterey jack. I think making it actually taste like an italian dish instead of some weird, Tex-Mex/American hybrid of a meal, would really do wonders.

Anyway, those are my Pinterest fails for the week. Jeff’s going to be out Sunday night, so I’m thinking of trying this Shrimp Pasta recipe then.  Am I a glutton for punishment or what?!🙂 Feel free to share any favorite recipes in the comments section…we can use all the help we can get in this house!

Mom Skillz: My resume

I was laughing to myself this morning after I dropped the kids off at daycare, thinking about the weekend we just had with all of us getting sick at the same time.  We’re all sniffling, sneezing, coughing, and just grouchy in general. There were a lot of overtired tantrums (only a few from me), and a few early bedtimes.  Through all of that, I battled through my own cold because, frankly, I just didn’t have time to personally be sick in addition to the other people in my house. There was too much to do! Too many tasks to balance!  I thought to myself, “I wish I could put some of the skills that I’ve acquired in these past two years as a stay at home work for free mom on my resume!” Which got my gears a-turnin’ and the result?

MOM SKILLZ: My resume

Names & Aliases: Natalie, Wifey, Babe (by both Jeff AND Layla) Mama, Mommy, MORE PLEASE!

Years of experience:  2 (or 17 if we’re counting babysitting and siblings…the answer, of course, is “Hell yes, we’re counting that.”)

Children (AKA Job History):

Joseph Age 1. Enjoys fruit of any kind, screaming “MOOOOORE!” when he doesn’t get it, swinging on the playground, and wailing in despair when I leave the room.

Skills acquired:

  • One-handed meal preparation
  • Calf wrangling One-handed diapering (using the other hand, and occasionally both legs to prevent child from getting a handful of diaper contents and/or aggressively grabbing his baby junk)
  • 14 months of breastfeeding (skill level: expert)
  • Photographer extraordinaire (specializing in crocodile tears)
  • Fluent in “suspicious silence,” and able to predict the exact moment that a tiny hand will lift the toilet seat and stick his hand inside
  • Personal chef (I can heat up a veggie nugget like nobody’s business)
  • Accomplished singer (well known hits include, “You Are My Sunshine,” “The Itsy Bitsy Spider,” and “Joey Needs a Diaper Change,” an original track)
  • Public Speaker (my rendition of Hippos Go Berserk has won many accolades)
  • Weight-lifter (able to successfully carry two children having two separate tantrums)

Layla Age 2.5. Enjoys carbs (bread, tortillas, bagels, biscuits, toast, waffles, etc), Disney Jr, hiding in other rooms to poop, and being naked/avoiding clothing as much as possible.

Skills Acquired:

  • Master of negotiations (Putting shoes on, brushing hair, getting in the car, “No, this is the last story. Seriously.”)
  • DJ: spinning tracks like “Hot Dog!”; “All I Want for Christmas is You” (year round); “Single Ladies”; and “Octopus (Slippery Fish)”
  • Ninja Skills (Most recently: getting a feeling child wasn’t feeling well, and entering her room just in time for her to sit up and puke; which I naturally caught in my hands to avoid having to get her up and change all of her sheets. Boom.)
  • Personal chef (specializing in PB&J that would BLOW. YOUR. MIND.)
  • Sous chef (only in pancake preparation)
  • Maid (“What do I do with this? Hmm. I think I’ll just throw it on the floor.”)
  • Nurse: no need for a first aid kit, I possess magical smooches that cure most injuries
  • Master of crisis management (stubbed toes, paper cuts, boogey noses, especially large cracks in the sidewalk that prevent Cozy Coupes from passing with ease)
  • Hostage Negotiator (“Get off your brother. Get OFF your BROTHER. GET OFF YOUR BROTHER!!”)
  • Marketer extraordinaire: can spin anything to seem appealing to a two year old. This includes visits to the pediatrician, dentist, getting into a car seat, eating broccoli; the list goes on and on

Salary History: Paid strictly in tears, hugs, smooches, and dirty diapers.

So!  Should I add all this to my resume? I think it’ll score me a job fast. And look at all that work experience! I’d say that qualifies me for well into the six-figure salary range, right? Gotta get right on that.

 

Thought this was funny? Don’t forget to click the handy-dandy buttons below to share with your friends!

Stuff my 2 year old says

We all know that kids say the darndest things. Lately there have been so many funny things coming out of Layla’s mouth that I’ve started to keep track.  Here are a few gems:

Sitting with Layla, playing with stuffed animals.

Me: What are you holding, Layla?

Layla: It’s a bunny!

Me: That’s right, it is a bunny!  What do you think bunnies eat?

Layla: I think….WAFFLES!

Layla kicks Joey so he tumbles out of her bed.

“Joey, you have to be careful!”

As Jeff starts to stand up to take the kids upstairs to put jammies on, Layla is waiting for him at the bottom of the stairs.

Layla: Come on babe, let’s go upstairs!

Singing to herself at the dinner table:

“I love you, I love me, we’re best friends and friends with me.”

Singing to herself in the car:

“Baa baa black sheep, hello wool! Yes sir, yes sir, yes sir….[long pause] ONE for my yes sir, one for my yes sir. One for my yes sir…”

At the dentist’s office playing with a toy record player (from approximately 1977).

[bringing me a stack of records]: Mama, look! It’s treasure! It’s really big coins!

Sticks face 2″ from brother’s face.

“He’s touching me! Joey’s touching me! Joey, that is NOT okay!”

She's an odd bird, our Layla

She’s an odd bird, our Layla

Kid cracks us up! Gotta love that she always keeps things interesting!

The “pretty” problem

You know how these days it seems like in politics you can only be a far-left liberal, or a far-right conservative?  Doesn’t that make you mad?  What’s wrong with that happy place in the middle?  There’s so much space there, to relax and spread out your views!  I think the same thing is happening with parenting.  People are jumping to so many extremes that usually come with a heavy side of judgement, and to be honest it just irritates me to no end.

Oh, sorry, little Quinoa doesn’t eat gluten, sugar, dairy, or non-organic produce. 

Oh, you yell at your kids? Hmm. We sit down and meditate on our actions together.

And finally, I don’t want people to tell my daughter how pretty she is. 

You have certain ways you want to raise your kid? Great. Don’t make my children seem like wild animals because we do things differently, though. That last one I read in an article, and boy did it set me off.  If I have to read one more thing about how we shouldn’t focus on our daughters’ looks, and they shouldn’t have princesses, and that Disney will be the death of them all. Good grief.  You guys–I get it. I was a Women’s Studies minor in college.  I took all the classes and met all kinds of feminists. I learned many different theories behind commercialism and how it affects our children.  I know.  But getting your undies in a twist about Santa telling your daughter how pretty she is isn’t going to do anything but damage.

Can’t we all just agree that just about everything is better in moderation? Should we buy our daughters Barbies and say, as we lay them reverently in their tiny hands, “I want you to look just like this one day?” NO! Obviously not! But should we cut out calling our daughters beautiful? Also, no.  The article went on to say that Santa could have talked to this woman’s daughter about anything, but instead he just kept going on and on about how pretty she was, and compared her beauty to other women in the mall.  Guess what? Santa’s probably an old dude. He probably thinks he’s being super awesome.  She mentions that when talking to girls, of course “appearance-based comments spring to mind,” but also suggests that we should think of something else before we resort to those. I disagree.

get that we wish people wouldn’t only focus on our daughters’ looks, but at the same time…don’t we all focus on our looks?  What would happen if you stopped telling your daughter she looked pretty? Like any kid denied of something, she would probably become obsessed with it.  If someone jumped in every time someone said you looked pretty to say, “AND you’re smart!” or “there’s MORE to you than that!” wouldn’t you become a little defensive and wonder just why, exactly, you weren’t allowed to be called pretty?  Trying to cut something out of your kid’s life never works, people.  Take it from me.  I had parents who said, “You’re not allowed to date that boy! He is bad news!” when I was in high school, and guess what? I married that boy. Oh, snap!  Mothers of teenagers, I can hear you screaming in fear from here!

Pretty AND smart

Pretty AND smart

So what does this all come down to?  This: I tell Layla she’s “so pretty.” ALL. THE. TIME.  I crack up as she strikes little poses when I do her hair or when she tries on a new outfit (although I haven’t the foggiest where she got the poses from…that’s not something I do, haha!). Here’s the deal, though: I also tell her how smart she is, all the time.  I don’t only shop in the “pink aisle” at toy stores, nor do I deny her any toys that are “for boys” (in fact, the only thing she asked Santa for this Christmas was a Fire Truck, which she got and is thrilled with). She’s that little girl in a tutu playing with a dump truck in the mud. She says to me all the time, “I’m a cutie patootie!” and “I am gorgeous!” and you know what? I’m okay with that! I want her to think she’s gorgeous! I want her to think that through every stage of life, no matter how her body changes. I don’t want her to be part of this body-shaming culture that I am ashamed to say I’m part of. Yes, I stand in front of the mirror and groan. I bemoan my body and think back to my high school days when I thought I was “so fat” and cringe. If only I had known! But I don’t do that in front of her.  She usually showers when I shower, and I let her ask her questions (“Mama, you have a beard!  Daddy has a beard on his face!” (while pointing at my nether regions) was, really, just the funniest thing she may have ever said to me).  She points to my c-section scar, and I tell her that’s where the doctors took Joey out of my belly. She’s a little kid who finds butts inexplicably funny. I’m open and honest with her, and I don’t hide myself in any way.

On another note, what about our sons? The article mentioned that Santa told another little boy all about his reindeer, and why couldn’t Santa have told her daughter about the reindeer?! You know what? The first thing people say to my son is how stunningly beautiful his eyes are, or how cute he is, or, “look at those eyelashes!” So is that not okay?  Where are the articles shaming people for calling our sons beautiful? We’re okay with that, just not our girls? Come on.  Commenting on looks is something that everyone does as an ice breaker, and rightfully so. It’s a nice superficial way to ease into a conversation without peppering someone with personal questions right off the bat.  This works especially well with kids (boys AND girls), who will often clam up if they’re asked something so personal point-blank.  But, “Oh look at your beautiful dress,” might lead to, “I picked it out all by myself!” or “It’s blue!” which can lead her opening up about anything else. 

What it comes down to is moderation.  So strangers tell your kids they’re stunningly beautiful? Awesome! Don’t be mad about it, be flattered and say “thank you!” so your kid knows it’s not a bad thing.  It’s not your job as a parent to dictate what other people say to your children.  Your job as a parent is to shape your reactions so your children know how to react and what to think. Be there to tell them they’re smart, resourceful, and creative; but be there to tell them they’re beautiful, too.

[Mom rant, done. *drops the mic*]

Happy merry new year!

Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy New Year, Merry Festivus…you get my point.

DOC MCSTUFFINS!!

DOC MCSTUFFINS!!

I hope you all are having a lovely time with your families and friends! I’m home with the peanuts for the next week, while they’re off school, so I’m sure my writing will either be nonexistent or once-a-day due to the hilarity and madness of it all.  We had a wonderful Christmas, and are currently trying to dig ourselves out of the pile of toys and clothes that we were buried in.

We spent a beautiful, nearly 80 degrees and sunny, day with family at the beach and then my parents’ house. PLUS, the kids actually slept in until 8:15 AM! Say whaaat?! It’s been a wonderful holiday so far!  Hope you have lots of time to relax and enjoy time with your loved ones! Here are a few cute shots from our fun day. Enjoy!

Smooches for Nonnie!

Smooches for Nonnie!

DSC01810

Football time!

Football time!

The point that I realized I was about to get soaked!

The point that I realized I was about to get soaked!

Can you find Joey?

Can you find Joey?

Family photo!

Family photo!

Hysterical. Gotta take one of these when she gets her license one day

Hysterical. Gotta take one of these when she gets her license one day

Who needs shirts?!

Who needs shirts?!