Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Worm Time.

Right now the kids, especially Adam, are obsessed with this online game called Slither IO. You're a worm, you're trying to kill other worms and then eat their sparkly guts. When Adam really gets into it, he likes to have his jams going as well.

Sometimes Ellie, Tim and Adam will all play and then collude with each other to take out other worms. They did it on Sunday and at one point it got so loud that I got my coffee, got my cat, and escaped to my room, where I turned the music up real loud to drown out the music and the yelling. Tim is living his best life.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Some Sweet Soccer Mom Action.

When I signed the kids up for their first round of "real" soccer, I did not expect that it could be upwards of six hours a week between practices and games, but here we are. I am now someone with a folding chair in my car so I can sit on various sidelines. The pluses are that the kids have their practices and games at the same field every time, so me and my lousy sense of direction only have to make it to two locations a week, and each soccer field is next to a park, so one kid can play while their sibling practices. Game days, Tim and I divide and conquer, and Mimi and Poppy have been trying to make it to both games.

The other, biggest plus, is that the kids are having a blast. Adam loves that his "best fwiend" Nico is on his team, and while he spends a lot of his practice time just ding-donging around the field, he's got some decent focus on game day. In his age group they break each team in half and they play on a half field, so that it's not all eight kids trying to kick each other in the shins at once. Ellie's team has slightly more skill and focus, though on Fridays she comes to practice from gymnastics, so some of her focus is broken by her desire to do front and back walkovers on the field, and she's distracted by the sheer exhaustion of it all (this Friday night she went to bed crying, and then we heard her crying at 7am because of an aquabead emergency - we had hoped she'd sleep at least an hour longer!) They have good, encouraging coaches and they're having a blast, even sweating to death.

Hopefully their beautiful, smiling faces give you the full picture of how nice and sunny and warm it is out on the pitch, yikes!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Settling in to School Times

Week three (is it three?) of the school year and we seem to be getting into a good routine, between the early mornings, the various pick ups, soccer practices and piano lessons. By that I mean, things are busy but good. Eight years later it has finally come to pass that the children have activities that prevent us from lounging around Gigi and Grizz's house every afternoon, eating their granola bars and using up their art supplies.

Ellie had back to school night last night - her teacher seems great, and I loved this "Taco Bout Me" work sheet they did.

As you can see, her hobbies are drawing, gardening and baking, like a middle aged lady, and please enjoy the suck up move about her amazing teacher.

Adam also brought home a nice work sheet. Please enjoy that he wrote his first name on the top half of the space provided, and his last name underneath, going backwards. I'm pretty sure he knows garbage truck doesn't begin with A, but I also suspect it's the only thing he can draw.

Walking to school has been a nice way to start the mornings, except for when Adam doesn't listen to me about not running down hill and ends up with a case of road rash. When I pick him up from school, Ellie's class is just walking over to the picnic tables for lunch, so the kids get to see each other for a brief minute, which they cherish, as though they had been separated for years.

Coming up next year, they'll be on the same play ground schedule and she'll pretend she doesn't even KNOW him.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Back to School.

Look at how cute this little knuckleheads are, in their matching outfits! Ellie was so excited that they could wear the same shirt, and go to the same school. Adam was so excited that his friend Nico from the YMCA Kidzone was at his school and in his kindergarten class that he walked into the room without even turning back to say goodbye to me. Which is better than having him physically pulled off of me, as has sometimes happened in preschool.

Ellie has a few good buddies in her class. Her former "boyfriend" Preston (of the "we're going to get married, we don't care HOW LONG we have to wait!" fame) is now just a friend to her allegedly, but I have seen them do a lot of strolling the play ground together before and after school. Her teacher suggested she do more reading by herself, so even though Tim and I have said all summer she should start rereading Harry Potter book one on her own, she didn't start until Monday afternoon when the teacher told her. Adam is happy to head into class and happy to see me at the end - I'm sure he's being his usual social butterfly self - I just hope he's sitting his bottom down and using his listening ears. The bigger transition for him is not napping anymore (though he did lay down for an hour today after getting up early this morning) and not being able to take Lamby with him - we are trying to transition to Lamby being a friend who only stays inside of our house

Also this week, we started AYSO soccer practice, which is quite a step up from them ding-donging around the turf at the Y with a variety of kids. This is divided by gender and ages, so Ellie won't get the chance to beat some four year old like a drum on the pitch. Thus far, the coaches are really nice, and the schedule is okay-ish. Ellie has two practices a week, including one one Friday about an hour after gymnastics, so I look forward to seeing if she's able to stay awake through dinner.

As you can see, Adam is running outside the boundaries of the field. Was not able to get a picture of him with the siglet over his head like Cornholio. Good news, BEST FWIEND NICO is also on his soccer team.

For me, the three hours between drop off and pick up are going too fast, especially since mom and dad are out of town and I'm in charge of getting Sara to work. But the good news is that since Adam is an early bird, I don't have to miss out on my favorite work out classes at the Y, but before I work out, I have coffee and cat time in my quiet, empty house.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Summer Loving.

Well, it's our last weekend of the summer! We did it!

The past few days we've been doing some additional fun things, and I've joked that I'm trying to trick the kids into having lots of good memories of ice cream and swimming and fun nights out, versus the dog days where we watched a lot of TV inside to escape the heat or I yelled at them to quit fighting with each other and quit talking back to me.

We got all of our school supplies at Target - please remind me next summer to not take them with me, as there was a lot of crying about who got to put glue sticks into the cart, etc etc. I'm sure somewhere on the internet there is a story written by a stranger who is like "mean mom in Target, I saw you snap at your son and threaten to walk out with nothing, cherish every moment because before you know it, they'll be gone to college." Hopefully she also caught the direct quote "I know you have to go potty because you won't leave your penis alone, so quit fighting me, it's time to go potty!"

Mimi took them back to school shopping and they came home squealing with joy about all of their new LEWKS, and then have told everyone they met since about their great LEWKS for the coming year. I also did a thorough closet purge, so hopefully now everyone's drawers are full of clothes that actually fit them. I suspect Adam has outgrown his 5T pants over the summer though, so a trip to Children's Orchard will be in order for more "cool jeans" when the weather gets colder.

Yesterday we went to the beach with Gigi for a few hours after our morning YMCA work outs. The tide was low as were the rip tides, so it was fairly relaxing for all, even if the ground at Doheny is super rocky. At one point, Ellie and Gigi went for a walk down the beach, and then I saw them walking out to the sand bar, Gigi hauling Ellie, since she had water shoes on and Ellie did not, and eventually I thought "this is how my mom takes a digger before another trip to South Africa and once again doesn't get to go" so I paddled out on the boogie board, and told Ellie to lay herself on it and paddle in. The best part of the kids and the boogie boards was when they'd wash up on shore and not know what to do, and seemed offended that I thought they could roll off into 4 inches of water and then stand up using their legs. As I said, meanest mommy. Adam spent a bunch of his time digging and building with two other boys. Their main material was some of the larger rocks from the bottom near the shore, and so they'd find one and shout "come and look at this big, bad boy!" Listening to three little dudes yell "look at this bad boy," "do you have a bad boy?" "come help me with this bad boy!" was pretty hysterical. If I had a nickle for every time they said bad boy, I would have at least been able to pay for our time on the parking meter.

We finally found out their teachers - Adam has the same teacher for kinder that Ellie had for kinder and first. She was a brand new teacher when Ellie was in kindergarten, so it's kind of fun that we get to three-peat on her career. I know nothing about Ellie's second grade teacher, but a couple of her girlfriends from last year are in her class. She loves learning and is such a teacher's pet that I don't really worry about her too much (plus in this day and age, public school teachers are doing it for the love of the job, not because of the outrageously high salary and great benefits.) I can't wait to see what they think of day one! In the meantime, just getting all of the lunch items ready to go, back packs pulled out of closets, and mentally preparing to set the alarm and be up at a decent hour after a summer of sloth.

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Prime Numbers.

If I have been remiss in updating this blog, it's because I am now very elderly and received a grave shock, and haven't quite recovered.

So this past Monday I turned 37. Saturday before, I went out with a couple of girlfriends to hang out for the day, to celebrate that three of the five of us are summer babies. We had pedicures, lunch and cocktails, and Sara Jo drove me back to my house, where I expected we'd hang out with our kids and husbands and order pizza and drink a few more beers. But then I opened the door of my house and the three other ladies were there with their families, as were a bunch of my LA-based girlfriends and their spouses, and Jake was holding a tablet with Becca skyped in, and everyone was yelling SURPRISE. I have never been more surprised, shocked or pleased in all of my life! I've always wanted a surprise party but figured it wasn't in Tim's wheelhouse! Boy was I happy to be proven wrong! He'd organized the whole thing, had it catered by the local Mexican place we love and gotten Jake to come over and babysit all day so that he could run to Costco and pick up cake and beer (that's right, Costco cake, my truest love language.)

IT WAS AMAZING. We had a really fun, relaxed night - the kids all scattered to play in the house and the adults sat out back and gorged ourselves on tacos and enchiladas and chips and guac. It was so, so fun. I went to bed smiling like the Chesire cat, feeling so very loved.

And then the next day, we had some time to fart around in the morning and then it was time to pick up Becca and Hazel at the airport for additional SURPRISE time! So I got to spend my birthday with my best friend, and Ellie's new best friend.

And while Becca was here, we even managed a drive up to Woodland Hills to see Lauren and baby Piper, who is roughly a month younger than Hazel Bazel. Ellie was in total heaven, having two babies to shoosh and kiss and love upon.

PLUS I got to have my usual fun birthday dinner with my folks - the kids helped Auntie Sara make a dirt cake, many delicious gummy worms, and we had dinner with the Fords as well during the week, so I am well and truly spoiled rotten. And still surprised about it all.

Bonus picture of Adam wearing a wig, at birthday lunch with the ladies. I feel like if you put a squash blossom on him, he could be your zany anthropology professor.

What else? The Friday before, Blizzard rented out the Long Beach Aquarium for their summer party, so we got to go and see a bunch of fish and pet a bunch of sharks. They also fed the otters while we were there and threw in a bunch of toys for them, so that was really adorable to see.

The kids go back to school a week from tomorrow, and we find out their teachers on Thursday night. The last couple weeks have been very fun and relaxed - it was lovely having such cute houseguests for a few days, and the week before the kids were in YMCA art camp in the afternoons and made all sorts of good arts and also crafts. This coming week they are going back to school shopping for first day outfits with Mimi, and we need to get everyone's hair cut and school supplies purchased. HERE I COME, TARGET! We went out to brunch today with some friends and there was a Nordstrom Rack nearby, so we went over and got new shoes for everyone - Adam's tennies were beat to death at the beginning of the summer, but since he's only needed them to have closed toed shoes at the Y, I didn't want to replace them until the last minute. Ellie got some new slip on shoes, as I discovered her kerplotchies are almost a size too small, and we stopped at Boot Barn to upgrade her the next size in cowgirl boots. She's not even eight years old yet, and is in the last size of children's shoe sizes, yikes.

Meanwhile, at brunch today Adam was doing a word search, and pointed to LE and goes "that spells Lee." I pointed out the letters C-O-P to him and he said cop. Also figured out Run and Go. MY BABY CAN READ! (a little bit.) Makes me feel better about kindergarten upcoming, because it's not like I've been making them do summer homework (though we read to them every night.)