Monday, March 31

Life as "normal"

My inlaws had the boys since Wednesday evening and they brought them back last night. My "Mommy-hood" has returned. Payton has an intestinal bug and so he couldn't go to school today. Maxwell is so happy to see me that he won't leave my side. I've been doing laundry all day and trying to keep everyone happy. I love my boys, but I sure didn't miss wiping noses and butts!

But, living in my newly updated home is really nice! I love my sink and it's so NICE to have kitchen cabinet doors and not have to look at everything all the time. And the ceiling fan...ah. Such a nice update from the one that was there!

Maxwell is napping and P is watching a movie. I'm finally getting to lunch (2:30pm). I'd like to go to the Y tonight, but with bugs going around our house I don't want to contaminate anyone else. I'm sure we'd get it back within a week or two anyway.

Hopefully everyone is healthy tomorrow!! It's opening day at Erma's Frozen Custard!!! WOOHOO!!

Sunday, March 30


I busted through! At the gym this morning, I was able to do a mile in less than 13 minutes! WOOHOO!! I've been working on it the last few weeks and I finally did it. That was my first "mini goal".

Next Goals:

Lose 5 lbs by May 1st

Run mile in 12 minutes by June 1st

Saturday, March 29

Work Day Two

We actually got up on time yesterday! That was a great start. We worked on the kitchen cabinets, painted around the doors and molding in the hallway, painted the ceiling in all the main rooms, painted the ceiling in the laundry room, hung a ceiling fan and then finished the kitchen sink. VERY productive! My car is loaded with donations to take the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store. They take donations and then sell or give them to homeowners.

After we finished our cleanup from all our projects, we met up with one of Matt's friends, Dave, and his wife, Rebecca. It was our first time all metting each other, and we had a great time. We went to Cheeseburger in Paradise and ran into a friend of mine, Jessica. She had me get a great drink, a Pomegrante Rum Mojito. SO yummy. Then after we were seated, I ordered another Mojito in Pinana Colada. Ohhhhh. Delicious! We had a great meal and then the guys wanted to go see Semi-Pro with Will Ferrell. It was funny, but not great. But the guys liked it. Either way, it was fun to hang out with some of Matt's friends for a change.

Today, I'm finishing up a few details here and there. I need to run an errand or five and then I'm going shopping this afternoon with a friend. Tomorrow I hope to squeeze in some gym time between church and grocery shopping before the boys come home tomorrow around 7pm. By the time they come home, it'll be four full days since I've seen them. I miss them so much. I wonder if Maxwell will still want to nurse or if he'll just give it up. He's 15 months now, so anything is possible!

Have a great weekend! Enjoy the sunshine if you can!

Friday, March 28

Work Day One

Matt and I slept in this morning, so we got a late start on our projects, but really...a chance to sleep in until 11am without the kids and no where to be! Why WOULDN'T we sleep in?

But we got up and moving pretty quick. We were at Lowes and spent 1.5 hours there buying what we needed. We came home and got straight to work. I painted half of our kitchen cabinet doors that were still remaining to be painted. Then we started work on our kitchen sink. We removed the entire sink and replaced it with a new one with a new faucet! I'm so excited! It looks great, but it took about 4 hours total. We also removed the old caulk around the kitchen counters and I recaulked. It looks much fresher.

Somewhere in my day, I also managed to paint the bathroom ceiling. I'm SO glad that's done. I've been waiting to get it done for so long. It needs touched up a bit in a place or two, but we have a lot of painting to be done tomorrow, so I'll work on it then.

Matt and I worked side-by-side almost all day without any issue or argument. It was so nice. We listened to music on the Comcast Music channels and tried to name the artist and title of the song without looking. We kept track of points for awhile, but then it just became fun.

Tomorrow, we're need to finish a few details on the sink, paint a lot and then I think we'll go out to dinner together. Hopefully we can make it through tomorrow, too, without any disagreements about how to get things done.

Wednesday, March 26

Trip to Ohio (LONG blog!!!)

Whew!!!! I'm home and EXHAUSTED! This has to be my most exhausting trip to Ohio yet. With both Payton AND Maxwell on the move and needing attention, I didn't get near as much "downtime" as I usually do at my parents' house. But it was a great trip!

We drove in on Saturday and set up the guest rooms and got all the accommodations set up. That night, all of the adults went out for dinner for my "baby" brother's 27th birthday. My mom was GREAT and found an awesome sitter from her church that came over and just sat with the boys while they slept. We went out to Buca Di Beppo, a family style Italian place. It was great food and lots of fun. All my brothers were there, which is rare.
My brother took this picture of Matt and I. I see in my cheeks that I'm losing weight and Matt looks good too! Not sure why his cheeks are so red...he wasn't even drinking.

Then, Easter Sunday, we all got up, got dressed for church and let the boys find their baskets. Payton loved finding his basket. We all went to my childhood church where my parents still go and then came home to hunt Easter Eggs and have dinner. Payton loved hunting eggs so much that he asked different family members to hid them again. He did this five times! Unfortunately, Matt had to come home Sunday night to return to work on Monday.

Monday, we met my brother and sister in law for breakfast at Panera and then went shopping. The rest of the afternoon, we just hung around the house.

Tuesday, we decided to take the boys to the Cleveland Children's Museum. The building is small, and it was spring break for most schools in the area, so things were CRAZY, but the boys had a blast none-the-less. There are several permanent exhibits; water area, climbing area, big red barn (for under 4 yrs old), and a community area that is a store, house, hospital, post office and bus station. Then they have an exhibit that changes quarterly. Right now it's about the Galapagos Islands Tortoise. It was really cool! Maxwell had never been in the sand before and he wasn't sure at first, but within five minutes he warmed up to it.

Today, Wednesday, I took the boys to my inlaws house for the rest of the week so that Matt and I can do some serious work on our house. We have a lot of "little things" that need to be attended to before we start the Spring work outside.

If you finished reading this, THANKS! I hope you all had as great an Easter as we did. And I hope you all enjoyed the pictures.

Monday, March 24

Going "Home"

For the holiday weekend and spring break, my boys and I are currently at my childhood hometown visiting my parents. We'll be here for five days total, which is plenty and not enough at the same time. The town has changed over the last 10 years since I moved out and moved on, but the feelings are still here. And the memories.

Yesterday, I was driving around town and I passed my elementary school. Then the place I had my first job. I passed the pool where I used to spend my summers. I passed the lake I used to skinny dip in. I passed the restaurants where we would go after football games. And even when I got home, the memories kept coming.

The fights with my brothers...and my parents. Sneaking out at night. Playing card games around the dining room table. Birthday parties. Pool Parties. Girl talks with my mom late at night. I'm glad that I can come back to these memories. I wouldn't trade them in for anything. I hope that my boys have such fond memories of their childhods when they grow up.

Thursday, March 20

Happy First Day of Spring!!

Spring is...
*playing outside
*spring showers
*playing in puddles
*trips to the zoo
*baby animals at the farm
*Payton's Birthday
*Mother's Day
*the start of festivals
*walking to the library
*worms and yucky bugs
*frogs in the ponds
*going for bike rides
*raincoats and boots


Tuesday, March 18

I'm back!!

Whew! We got "the ickies" around here somethun' fierce!! I started getting sick on Sunday night and then Matt got sick last night. We're talking REAL sick. Like the spending time in front of the toliet wondering if you'll actually die there. Nasty!

BUT I'm better. (Matt's getting there.) Unfortunately we contaminated a few friends and family members in the process. So sorry about that! I hope you're all feeling 100% soon! Blame it on Maxwell...he brought it here first!

Anyway, life is good again today. I went to a National Heritage Academy meeting about Payton's Kindergarten in the fall. *GASP* he will be FIVE in 4.5 weeks. And he's starting REAL school. I can't handle it. no. not my baby. *sob*

I'm not sure where he'll go yet, but this school is definately in the running. I really like the "feel" of it and I like the principal A LOT. I'm considering a few others, but we'll have to see how those pan out yet.

Well, I missed you all, but I have a ton of stuff to catch up on since I've been sick. The house looks like a bomb hit it. ugh. "See" you soon.

Sunday, March 16

My in-laws...again

I know I bragged about them back in January (see blog here) but MAN do I love them. I'm so fortunate!

My mother-in-law (MIL) and I have been trying to go shopping together for about two weeks and finally were able to go yesterday. We went up to Great Lakes Crossing Outlet Mall and it was such a great time. We got a lot of great deals, I was able to finish off the boys' easter outfits and we got our eyebrows threaded. OUCH!! My skin is still sore! But we had a great time together. We talked about some family friends who don't have good relationships with their daughter-in-laws. I know that I'm lucky to be able to talk openly with my MIL and that she and I can confide in each other.

While we shopped, my father-in-law (FIL) took care of the boys. He plays with them, entertains them, feds them, changes diapers and yesterday, even took them for a walk to the grocery store to get cookies. He's such a great "Papa". Even my friends who know him say so. Everyone wants to know if my inlaws will take their children for a weekend. If my inlaws started charging, they could make a living off just having grandkids on the weekends!

My in-laws have accepted me as their own and I am so fortunate to be accepted and loved so much.

Saturday, March 15

Tiffisa Time

There is nothing else like my "Tiffisa Time". That is the time I spend with my heart's connect, Tiffany. You see, when you combine Tiffany and Ellisa, you get Tiffisa. I think we've been calling it that for about 3 years now.

You wouldn't peg us as best friends if you knew us individually. In fact, some people who only know us together probably don't understand the connection. I mean, she's practically a lawyer and I'm...well, a stay at home mom. She's a catholic, I'm not. She's a liberal, I'm conservative. She's oil, I'm vinegar. She drinks gin & tonic, I drink beer. The list goes on and on.

But that which bonds us is much greater than that which divides us. We need each other. And not like you need a fry from McDonald's. No. We need each other on a deeper level. The level that is unspoken. And doesn't need to be spoken to make sense. We get each others humor, quirks and even each others flaws.

The time I spend with Tiffany is "sweet relief". It's the break from my norm. It's the dessert at the end of my dinner. It's the crack for Whitney Houston. She was there when Max was born and I was there when Lydia was born. We will always be connected and I wouldn't have it any other way.

I *sparkly* love my Tiffisa Time.

ps, this was written at 2am after a night of Tiffisa time that included a couple of beers for me (gin & tonics for her). Please excuse this if it doesn't make sense to you. But it does to Tiffisa.

Thursday, March 13

Spring has sprung? Maybe??

Today, I woke up with motivation and commitment in my heart. As soon as the boys had breakfast, I loaded them up and we went to the Y. I found a new route and it only took me 10 minutes! yeah! I really need to do my orientation soon so that I can know how to use the machines better. I did my best, but there were a few that just didn't seem right and I didn't want to hurt myself just starting back. So I did about 8 machines and then my intervals again. I'm really hoping to be able to really jog/run for 45 minutes straight by the end of summer.

Maxwell did much better in childwatch and they let the older kids run around in the gym, so Payton had a good time. He didn't want to leave when it was time to go home.

After, we came home, had lunch and then it really started to warm up outside. By 2:30pm it was 55 degrees!! I got Payton's bike and helmet out and loaded Max in the stroller. We went around the block twice and Payton was too tired to go any more.

I think we'll just hang out here at home the rest of the night and then tomorrow, Matt is doing some repairs on the car and I'm going to try to rake up the leaves left from fall and pull up the dead flowers in my flower beds.

I pray that this is the beginning of spring and that the snow is gone...but this is Michigan. I know better than to be too optimistic.

Tuesday, March 11

Feeling Motivated

Matt and I made a decision about a gym and joined the local YMCA. I'm very happy with my decision and I started back to the gym tonight.

I had my annual appointment at the doctor's today and was actually fairly impressed with my weight. I'm right were I was 2 months ago. LOL. That's not too bad really considering I didn't do a lot to lose any.

I was able to run intervals tonight of 3 minutes speed walking (3.5 MPH) and then 2 minutes jogging (4.6 MPH). I'm anxious to get my grove back and I hope that by July I can lose 10 lbs and by December I can be in my "ideal" range which would mean 18-20 lbs lost total.

Wish me luck!!!!

Saturday, March 8

Can't get enough...

I've been thinking a lot about addictions this weekend. Friday night I was with a few friends and we were talking about smoking. That one topic alone has stuck in my head all weekend. I realize that I've had a lot of addictions in my life. Some healthy, some not so healthy. But each of them has had the same effect on me.

Addiction: to devote or surrender (oneself) to something habitually or obsessively

I've been addicted to substances and emotions. I've been addicted to actions and things. I've even been addicted to a person and a relationship. The feeling that no matter how much time I get with that person, or how much of an item or feeling I get, it's just not enough.

Currently, I have several addictions. Some may just call them "obsessions" and , luckily, most of them are not harmful. They are things like healthy living and shoes for my boys. I'm fortunate that I've been able to kick almost all my addictions without help of any kind. And I'm grateful for that, and feel truly blessed.

But some addictions have stuck with me for a lifetime. No matter what I do or what I try to stop doing, my brain and heart goes back to that "thing". I can't shake it. I can't let it go. I can't give it up. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.

A feeling of aversion or attachment toward something is your clue that there's work to be done. -Ram Dass

I wonder if the work will ever be done.

Snow, Snow, go away.

NEVER COME BACK!! I'm so sick of snow. We've had our limit on snow days and if we miss another, we have to make it up. We still had snow left from the last storm on Wednesday and now we're getting another 3 inches. Payton and I made a fort with the last snowfall and he's pretty happy with it. He's hoping that this will add to the wall and make it bigger. We'll let Daddy take care of that though.

Maxwell is getting four more teeth right now. He already has eight. He's been a bit crabby and not sleeping well, but I can't really blame him. Hopefully it will be over in a week or so. These are the moments I'm glad we're not having any more kids.

Matt and I are pretty sure we're going to join the YMCA. I love the Warren Rec Center, but I need classes to keep me involved and moving. And since the Rec Center classes are $109 for 8 weeks, that more than doubles our membership price. With the Y, most are included and the extras are only $28 for 10 weeks. I'm anxious to get back to the exercise regime. I know I'll feel better and in time, look better.

Last night I had a few friends over and we played Wii for quite awhile. It's so different to see how "girls" play vs. watching my brothers and Matt play. We just laugh at each other and let each other do our thing. The guys try to help each other, offer advice and get upset when they don't do well. I much prefer playing with my girls.

Hope you're all having a great weekend and you're not getting *too* much snow...if any at all!

Thursday, March 6

Gym Time

Matt and I have decided to join a new gym. We went to two tonight with the kiddos to see what each was like. We haven't made a decision tonight, but we are definately weighing the pros and cons.

* cheaper
* bigger
* great indoor pool; lazy river; kid play area; waterslides; lap lanes
* classes not included in price (additional monthly fees)
* family locker rooms
* average childwatch
* cafe
* new and modern

* slightly more expensive, no joiners fee
* no pool, but we can use the pool at other local Y's (Royal Oak, Mt. Clemens) for no fees
* smaller
* basic classes included in price, extra classes paid
* great childwatch
* older, built in 1981, slightly outdated

So, we have to decide. I guess we'll mull it over a few days and see what we think.
If you have any input, please say so!

Tuesday, March 4


It's just a blah kind of day. Payton and I had eye doctor appointments today. He's perfect and healthy and sees 20/20. I am getting older, my eyes suck and I needed new glasses and contact prescriptions. ugh. I did discuss laser eye correction with him. It's something I'm definitely a candidate for he said. The cost is not *too* bad per eye. I was thinking it'd be more money. Maybe next year...

We got home and Matt had to take off right away, so another day without seeing him. Since we got home yesterday and he left for work until Thursday night, I'll only see him about 4 hours of awake time. That kinda sucks.

I had a headache from the dilation drops in my eyes and of course Max wouldn't nap. So that sucked. Finally got him to sleep, Payton and I played a game and made dinner and now he's watching a movie and Max is playing with Wii-mote.

I think I'll just relax tonight. I need to finish a knitting project soon, I have some sewing to do for a gift for a friend, I need to pick a new recipe for dinner this week and I have to go through all the ads and coupons from the paper on Sunday. I think I'll just keep the TV off and accomplish some things.

We're supposed to get between 4-8 inches of snow tonight with lots of blowing and high winds. I hope they don't cancel school tomorrow. Payton has a field trip and if they cancel that, this would be the 3rd of 4 field trips canceled! I know he'd be upset. Hopefully they can get the roads taken care of overnight so that by morning school can go on.

Monday, March 3

Double time: dreams

You get two blogs today since I haven't blogged all weekend!! Aren't YOU lucky?!

I had this crazy weird dream on Saturday night (and I wasn't even drinking!). Matt and I had bought a house from an old couple. It was on a really nice street in a nice neighborhood, right on a lake. When you walked in the front door to one side was a old kitchen and living room. To the other side was a new kitchen and living room. I asked Matt why it was like that and he told me that it was because when the first one got old, the man didn't want to tear it out and redo it, so he just built a new one. (...oh it gets weirder)

Upstairs, there were 4 bedrooms one in each corner of the house. Two on one wall, were connected with a long closet/hallway that we ended up using as Maxwell's bedroom because it was so big. Payton was in one of those bedrooms and we were in the other. Then there was a playroom and a computer room. night I was giving Maxwell a bath and the whole wall fell into the tub. Not in a scary crashing-in kind of way, but in a slimy sliding kind of way. Inside the wall, I could see all the pipes and wiring that ran through the house. While I was watching it, apparently unaffected by the sliding slimy wall in the tub, the pipes started to glow red hot and I could see the water going through them. And then the wiring started glowing blue and sparking. I asked Matt and he said it was fine and just because the house was old. (don't trust Matt on subjects of pipes or wiring).

So we went out back and Matt was fishing in the lake. But this is no ordinary lake. No, this lake comes right up to our backdoor. Like two steps and you're in the lake. Our neighbor yells over and asks Matt what he's catching and Matt holds up these pink fish/squid combo things. They were fish until the fin...then it had squid tentacles. So the neighbor offers up an old wench and pulley system he has to help Matt catch bigger fish. And he does. BIG ones. Bigger than Payton. Know how I know they're bigger than Payton? Because one lands on him and knocks him to the ground and Matt has to pull it off. (don't trust Matt to take my kid fishing either I guess).

So to escape all this, Maxwell and I go around to the front of the house. The front yard is really nice, but there are a ton of antiques in the yard. The former owners didn't have room for any of it, so they left it there for us. So I told Matt that I didn't want it and started giving it away to the neighbors.

Then I woke up. Thank goodness, because I'm not sure where else this could have gone.

So who's my dream interpreter? Whatcha got for me?

Birthday Party Weekend!

I"m exhausted!! As I mentioned in my last post, we had three birthday parties this weekend. Whew! I'm glad it's over.

First, was a little girl friend of Payton's 5th birthday party. It was at Michael's craft store. It was SO cute! They made these little ladybug and frog boxes, had cake, played a party game and then made a little puzzle thing. VERY cool party idea and Payton had a blast!!

Then we went to a first birthday party for a friend of the family's little boy. It was at a bouncing house and by the end of the party I think Matt was more exhausted than Maxwell and Payton. But everyone had fun!

Our third birthday party was for Matt's Godson who was turning four. He had a fireman's party at his house complete with a real firefighter! The kids had a blast tearing apart the playroom and covering themselves in red frosting. What more can a birthday boy ask for?! Unfortunately, no pictures of that one. I couldn't find my camera.
Later, after all the kids went to bed, Matt and I went back to the birthday boy's house to play a few games with the "grownups". (I use that term loosely.) We played a game called Dragonoly. I didn't get it. But I read the manuel for the first five rounds of turns and finally figured it out and by golly I won! Then we played another game called "Dog Bites Man: Hillarious Headlines". That was pretty fun too.
Maxwell had a really bad night sleeping at my inlaws. I forgot to bring his lovies to their house and he knew it. I guess I need to get a second set to leave there or something. Today, we woke up to 60 degree weather and sunshine. It was BEAUTIFUL!! Short lived, unfortunately, but fun while it lasted. I was going to take the boys to the zoo this afternoon, but when I picked up Payton from school, it was raining and getting cooler. Of course, there is snow in the forcast for tomorrow.
Payton and I have our eye doctor appointments tomorrow. It will be Payton's first time getting his vision tested. I'm sure he'll be fine, but there is a tad bit of concern because he holds books close, sits really close to the laptop and things like that. I hope it's nothing but laziness. I'll keep you all posted!