{twenty thirteen}

Monday, December 31, 2012

I plan to.........

1. Take more pictures.
2. Try to be more of a planner-in-advance-er.
3. Start using eye cream.  
4. Savor the moment when someone underestimates me.
5. Infuse more color into my wardrobe.
6. Worry less.
7. Blog more.
8. Three words: Spontaneous road trip.
9. Stop trying to please everyone else.
10. Pour my heart into what pleases me.
11. Cherish the little things. Because they truly are the big things. 
12. Enjoy more mornings where you reminisce about the night before.
13. Know the best is yet to come.

Happy New Year!

The other firsts.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

There are certain moments that I clearly remember being so excited for as a parent.
And I'm talking about aside from the typical moments you are supposed to be excited....the first smile, first giggle, first steps, etc.

I remember I couldn't WAIT until my kids could color.  So weird, I know.  But still....for whatever reason, I was excited about that.  Do you even know how many coloring books I bought once they understood the concept?  
And the crayons, seriously the CRAYONS I BOUGHT. 
8 packs, 16 packs, 48 pack with the sharpener, Disney character shaped ones, the triangular shaped ones, washable ones, glitter ones.....
Crayola, you're welcome.

I couldn't wait until they could sit up on their own so they could sit in the grocery cart by themselves.  Ok, this was more of a selfish reason.  I hated bringing that big bulky car seat carrier into the store and trying to squish all my groceries around it.  The baby almost always ended up holding the bread on his lap.

The day each of my kids could buckle themselves into their own carseat???  
Pretty sure no matter where you were in this country, you heard me screaming shouts of joy.

Recently, I crossed another one off my list: My kids watched Home Alone.  
I mean....really watched it.  I've tried to show it to them in years past but they were just too young to really "get" it and enjoy it.  
But this year?  Totally got it.  It was the BEST.

They crawled in in my bed, all fresh out of the shower and in their jammies, we popped popcorn and snuggled in.  And the way they LAUGHED....swear I will never forget that sound.

Well, we are off to spend an island christmas with my family.  You can follow our little adventure on my Facebook page. If I remember to post there, of course. And I just got with the times and created a McMommy instagram account (@mcmommyblog) so you can follow me there as well.  I can hardly wait to show you pictures of my nails...because the beauty is in the details.  

Happy holidays and Merry Christmas to everyonnnnnnnnne!!!

Because it still hurts.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Incomprehensible pain.

One of the news websites used those two words as a headline of one of the Sandy Hook stories it was reporting on.  

Friday's event was truly a pain no parent ever wants to be able to comprehend.  

It was a loss so devastating on so many levels, but at its very core for many of us, a loss so grievous because each of those children's parents did something so normal, so routine that morning:  They sent their child to school.

As a parent, all we ever try to do is protect our children.  
From the moment we discover we are pregnant, it's prenatal vitamins, monthly doctor's visits, and steering clear of litter boxes and lunch meats.
From the moment our newborn is placed in our arms, it's putting tiny hats on their heads to protect their body temperature, placing them to sleep on their back to protect from SIDS, and washing their tiny clothes in special detergent to make sure nothing irritates their delicate skin.

We enforce wearing helmets when riding bikes, washing dirty hands before eating, and sunblock at the beach even when it's cloudy.

Then one morning you send your child to kindergarten.  
And they do not come home.

The pain is incomprehensible.

It hurts me that the tragedy of Sandy Hook makes me have more patience with my own children.  That it reminded me to give them more out of the blue hugs and kisses.  I feel guilty because shouldn't those things come naturally to me as a parent all of the time?  

But the truth is, no it doesn't.  Because life gets in the way. 
Homework must get done. Messes must be cleaned up. Manners must be taught to little boys who like to make inappropriate sounds with their armpits at the dinner table. 

And in those moments? You forget about having patience. You aren't even sure you remember when you last had it.  Maybe patience is rolling around the third row of the minivan with the stale happy meal fries and that library book that should have been returned three weeks ago.   

But then suddenly on a random Friday morning, you find patience.
And gratitude to be able to give your child a kiss goodnight.
And fear of the cold realization that you are never going to be able to fully protect your precious baby the way you want.

None of us want the horror of a treacherous event like Friday to remind us to give spontaneous hugs and kisses.  I'd much prefer the gentle reminders of Anna Quindlen.

But those little (and big) lives lost on December 14th were not in vain.
The pain of their loss will forever be incomprehensible.
But the love they have flooded this nation with over the past five days is immeasurable.

And perhaps most importantly, palpable.

{love and prayers for heaven's newest angels}

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Then my phone went and made it art.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Seriously, I died laughing with this one....

Come Fly with Me: An Airplane Party!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

(This post circa 2010 is being re-published by special request....enjoy!)

This post is for every parent out there who is googling “airplane birthday party” right now.

Hello, and welcome!

See, I was in your shoes about two months ago.
We always do family birthday parties but when my soon to be 6 year old son asked me for a birthday party with his classmates, my heart got all kinds of guilty.
And so I caved.  (Sucker.)
He wanted to invite all the boys from his class over to our small house.  (Gulp.)
And he wanted a birthday all about AIRPLANES!  (Someone fill my wine glass and then get me to Google.)

Well you know what I quickly found out? 
Good luck with that airplane theme.

Humor me and try going to Party City or some other birthday site right now. 
Toy Story 3 theme? 
You got it!  Buzz Lightyear to the birthday rescue!
Star Wars? 
Sure thing! How many Darth Vader masks do you need? 200? No problem!
SOR-RY. You lose.

But not today, my friends.
Today you do not lose. 
Because today? You found this blog.
Today you get all my airplane birthday theme ideas.  TODAY YOU WIN!!!!

What’s a better invite for an airplane party than an…AIRPLANE TICKET!!
4x8 airline ticket invitation
Invites were made for me by this Etsy shop I found.  For a fun finishing touch, I mailed in an Air Mail envelope.

I kept the decor simple. 
I made airplane signs such as “Check-in”, “Baggage Claim”, “Ground Transportation”, etc.  This website with common airport travel signs was extremely helpful.  


We did a “Runway” table with simple black tablecloth and white duct tape.
runway table

Here’s a super fun decoration idea!  Hang inflatable airplanes from the fan.
Then turn the fan on the slowest speed. Watch the airplanes “fly”.
And now watch your kid’s face light up from the awesome-ness that is your party decoration.
airplanes fan

My games were old school with an airplane twist.  There is a reason old school games stand the test of time….they are so simple yet the kids LOVE them!

Some airplane games we played were:
- “Pilot, Pilot, Plane” (aka Duck Duck Goose)
- “Air Show” The kids put together gliders and then everyone lined up and flew theirs.  We made sure each kid “won” for something—best loop de loop, longest flight, best nosedive, etc.
- Airplane Piñata
-Red Light, Green Light  (Use red and green glow sticks things…so you look like a ground controller guy!)

Another game we played was similar to Hot Potato, but we played with the “Black Box” instead.

I had the boys sit in a circle and then I explained that the black box of an airplane holds all the important information about their flight.  (Um…I’ll just downplay the part where my son announced “AND THAT’S WHERE THEY FIND OUT HOW YOU CRASHED!”) 
Our black box was filled with all sorts of fun prizes.
So when the music starts (may I suggest “Come Fly With Me” by Frank Sinatra??), the kids pass the black box. When the music stops, whoever has the black box gets to open it and pick a prize out. 
Black Box

#4—Goodie Bags
I purchased these cloud favor boxes on Amazon:

We printed a label for the front of it that said “Thank you for flying Matthew Airlines” and obviously filled it with fun airplane-related stuff.  Hang a “Baggage Claim” sign for good measure!
airport signs

#5—Airplane shirt
My son didn’t want to wear his pilot’s uniform.  YEAH, GO FIGURE
But he did wear this airplane shirt, purchased from an Etsy shop called Bella Mia:


Well, I think those are the basics of a successful airplane party.  If you follow the above guidelines, I guarantee you will end your “flight” with some extremely happy passengers:

Carter and Matthew

Brain Potpourri

1.  I just wrote that title and realized....does anyone even get that reference or am I outdated???   p.s. It's a Jeopardy thing.  Speaking of....

2.  Sean Connery:  "I'll take THE RAPIST for $1000, Alex."
     Alex:  "That's not "The Rapist".  It says "Therapist".

3.  So Gisele had a baby girl.  Do you think they did that on purpose?  You know what I mean.  How you can spin the sperm or whatever and pick your baby's gender.  I have a list going in my head of celebrities I think did or did not do it.   Reese Witherspoon and baby Tennessee...totally did not.  Victoria Beckham with baby Harper?  Totally did it.  And let me invoke Melissa Gorga...thank you jesus {sign of the cross, kiss my thumb and look up}...because seriously how cute is that baby girl?!

4.  I just want to take a moment to apologize to everyone who has emailed me and FB messaged me since I started blogging again.   And I haven't responded yet.  I SUCK.  I'm also completely overwhelmed by your kind words and I swear I will be responding soon.  Which goes hand in hand with number 5....

5.  I never feel like I have it together.  I always feel like I'm doggy-paddling to get through the month, day, week, hour.  I just want to feel ahead of the game, for once.  Like those people.  You know the ones I'm talking about.  The people who set the coffee up the night before they go to bed. The ones who know how to work the timer on the coffee machine.  And put the mug out on the counter and everything.  I want to be that person so bad.

6.  Instead, let me tell you what happens to people like me....when slackers try to be pro-active.  We go to Toys R Us and buy our kids Christmas presents....and we are SO PROUD OF OURSELVES!  Because it's December 9th!!  AND WE ARE WINNING THIS GAME!!!!!!!!  We are not scrambling to buy gifts after work on December 23rd....nope, not us! We are planners this year.  And??  We get even more crazy and have the gifts wrapped and shipped to where we will be celebrating Christmas.  Aren't we so smart??  And organized?!  And.....dare I say it....ahead of the game!

7.  Then?  After these toys are shipped....you realize that they all require batteries.  And the location where you are spending Christmas?  Is not a place where batteries can be bought.  So that's fun.  To give your kids Christmas gifts that they won't even be able to play with Christmas morning.

8.  So the planners now have to head back to Toys R Us....to find the toys we purchased....to read the box to see what kind of batteries we need to buy and {PLEASE GOD DO NOT LET ME FORGET TO} pack them in our suitcase.   And, let's be honest here, we will probably be packing those suitcases at midnight the night before the flight.

9.  Carter's holiday class party is coming up.  The homeroom mom sent out a list a mile long of things she needed people to volunteer to bring in.  All the people who answer emails in a normal time frame got the good stuff.  This other mom and I must have answered slightly less quickly, because all that was left by the time we replied was "A bag of gumdrops and 22  Large Little Debbie Cakes."

And the other mom? Says all lightening quick "I'll bring the gumdrops!"
Who's exaggerating?

I wanted the gumdrops!!!!!!!!!!  I'm not a planner, remember?!  I could get a bag of gumdrops at Walgreens on my way TO the party!  Have you seen a Little Debbie display recently at the store?  There are like one million varieties of this nasty stuff.  And which one is LARGE?!?!

Someone call my pin-ssistant to deal with this mess and make it better.

Who needs an ELF?!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

{via pinterest...the source of all good ideas I'll never actually get around to doing}

Mac Attack.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Due to a long story that I'll later tell, I needed to get my kids a new elf.

Only these stupid elves have gone viral and everyone and their cat has one now and there are NO MORE ELVES LEFT ON THIS EARTH TO BUY.

And by none left on this earth, I mean my local Target doesn't have any more.

All they had was this.

I do not even know what that is.

But it was the last one left so I beat about ten people out of the way for it and then sprinted to the cashier.

When the kids woke up this morning, Matty right away found him.

Matthew:  "Let's name him Mac!"

Carter:  {silent}

Matthew:  "Carter do you like that name for him?"

Carter:  {skeptical look on his face}

Me:  "Carter, what's wrong?  What do you think?  Should you guys name him Mac?"

Carter: "Send that thing back to the North Pole and tell him to stay there."

Me:  "Carter!  That's not nice.  You are going to hurt Mac's feelings."

Carter:  "He better watch out."

Me: "He better not pout?"

Carter:  "No, he better watch out for ME."

And he stomped off.

Be afraid of this kid, Mac.  Be very afraid.

Pool side.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

1. Oh.  You have your baby.  In a bar.  

2. I heard moms of boys should know how to play pool. I know how to play, but I don't know how to play well.  I mean, I get the basic concept.  But is it wrong that I want to WIN BIG when I play him?!  

3. I think I made that shot.  

4. Just kidding.  I probably didn't.

5. Why does he look 15 years old in this picture?

6. That chalky haze all over the pool table?   Courtesy of my other son.  Who thought the chalk dust was "fun" and necessary to bathe the table in apparently.

7. Pretty sure Matty was trash-talking.

8. Pretty sure I said "Santa heard that."

9. Always thought I would be the mom polishing fingernails and braiding hair and playing Barbies. 

10. Never thought I'd be throwing footballs, cutting bait, de-hooking fish, playing pool....and? 

Loving every second of it.

He Needs Bubble Wrap.

Monday, December 3, 2012

You came into this world a healthy 8lb, 12oz baby who barely fit on the scale.  
Your feet were too big for the birth certificate. 

December 1st.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

So I woke up thinking about holiday cards this morning.

And how basically I do not have one thing done for my holiday to-do list.  

The McMommy Chronicles All rights reserved © Blog Milk Powered by Blogger