Friday, April 27, 2012

Casey and Mama day!

Yesterday, my company hosted Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day. Casey spent the day with me.
Casey spent the entire day learning about setting goals, saving money and being a great employee! He even completed an application! How many seven-year-olds can say they've completed an application for employment??

Ice cream time!!

Casey had a great time!
Terrific group of kids! Carrie and Linda in Human Resources made the event a huge success.
I was so impressed with how well behaved Casey was yesterday. He participated, he listened well, he made eye-contact and he made friends. I was absolutely thrilled.

I love my Casey!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Happy Birthday, Margery

Happy Birthday, my little Margery. I miss your face and hope to see you soon. I hope you have sunshine in Seattle and receive lots of yoga love. I hope Art and you have a beautiful day and you feel spoiled and loved.

Today I am 37-years-old. Last year was pretty great, but this year is going to be so good! I can feel it to the tips of my toes. The boys are getting bigger. I have a fantastic new job that is challenging and fun. Pedar's job is going great. Casey is loving school and Erik WILL be potty trained soon. I'm going to work harder at taking better care of my health and getting more projects around the house done. I want to feel more AHEAD, but I also want to take time to be grateful for all that I have.

Things that made my 36th year awesome:

1. Camping 
2. Disneyland
3. New job
4. Casey loving first grade
5. Erik loving Montessori
6. Pedar feeling secure in his job
7. Dad's health on the up and up
8. Thanksgiving with lots of family
9. Making a financial plan
10. Friends and family

I am so grateful for my friends and family! I'm going to blow out my candles and wish that you all feel really good today! Smooches!!

I love sleeping kids

Erik still naps at Montessori. I don't think he needs to nap anymore because on most nights this kid does not go to sleep around 8 p.m. with his brother. He fights sleep and he begs for a snack and he wants to watch That 70's Show with me. I don't blame him. Who doesn't love Red Forman??

On Sunday, when it was hovering around 95 and we were preparing to go to Casey's 1 p.m. baseball game, Erik climbed into his bed and fell asleep. He slept for over two hours. I had to miss the game and the heat. I was so grateful I had a tired little boy. I wasn't as grateful when he didn't want to sleep later that night. Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

I still haven't had the "Binky Fairy" come. Erik is ready. I just need to go get the "Fairy" gift so we are prepared. Erik isn't pooping on the potty either. I feel like I need to take a week off of work and really work on it. Why am I sharing this with you? Because this blog is my memory bank. Erik is over three now and its time we moved on from pull-ups and binkies. My youngest child is no longer a baby. He sleeps in a big bed, eats with utensils and yells back at me. This kid is ready for the big leagues. 

Am I ready? I'm getting there. I'm OK now with knowing I am done with the babies. I'm busy raising thoughtful young men. I've got a LOT to do!! I have BIG expectations that my boys will be able to socialize at parties, be extremely helpful and loving, be great listeners and compassionate/empathetic people, be financial planners and goal setters and even better at cleaning/laundry and cooking-- Oh and they will learn/want/know how to dance!!

What expectations do you have for your kids??

Monday, April 23, 2012

Backyard fun!

It was hot this weekend. We played in the pool and with the water toys to cool off. 

Casey had a baseball game on Friday and on Sunday. On Saturday morning before it got too hot, we went to Ancil Hoffman park and hiked around the river. We played in the backyard and then we finished Casey's zoo animal project. Casey and Pedar are spending the night at the zoo in a few weeks and each kid had to research a zoo animal. Casey had to study the Jaguar. We all learned a lot this weekend. 

I love hugs and kisses from my boys. I love watching Erik ride his little bike. I loved riding our bikes to Whole Foods for breakfast. I love eating hot dogs in front of Emigh Hardware. I love my husband who is willing to pull the really awful nut grass out for me and fix all my plants drip lines too. I love my boys. I love their crazy energy. I loved watching "Spy Kids" on Saturday night. I loved eating popcorn and sitting on the couch and relaxing.  I loved putting all my winter clothes under my bed. I love making room for lighter clothes and brighter colors. I love SPRING!!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Garden time!

Last weekend Pedar made two new garden boxes for the boys. 

Casey loves his new garden box!

We found two small toads in our yard. Erik LOVED them!

Erik loved the toads a little too much!

We have a huge crabgrass issue behind our fence and in this area, so we hope the garden boxes help hide our issue a bit. I had roses here and it was really hard to weed around my thorny friends.

 The boys LOVE watering. I hung their watering cans on plant hooks close to their boxes so they can water frequently.

Pedar and I planted our three garden boxes with veggies too!
The plants are doing great. The weather is AWESOME. It should reach almost 80 degrees today. Spring is here!! I just got back from Chicago and I am spending the day with Erik. Casey gets out of school a bit early on Thursdays, so we're going to get some ice cream and play at the park. What a GORGEOUS day. 

I missed my boys so much. It was hard doing Facetime with Erik. The final night I was gone his little faced crumpled when he saw me, and I could see how upset he was. No fun. But I'm back and the world is right again. Yeah for love and family and garden time.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Happy 5th Birthday, Lola!

April 17th is Lola's 5th Birthday!! We can't believe you are five-years-old. How is it that you are starting Kindergarten soon?? It feels like not too long ago that Uncle Pedar flew out to help your parents move into their new home and you were sooo tiny!
 I bet when you woke up today, you got cuter, right?? You always do! You are one incredibly sweet and thoughtful little girl. We love the sass in you too.
Your cousins love you!!
Your blanket loves you!
Trees even love you!

 We love you, Lola and we hope you have an awesome day.

Happy Birthday, Mom/Nana!

April 16th is my Mom's Birthday! Happy Birthday, Mom. 

 I love you so much. Thank you for all that you do for me and my little family. You don't have to give so much time and love to us, but we are all so glad that you want to. Thank you for always "putting yourself in my shoes" and taking the boys when you know Pedar and I could really use a few hours to ourselves. Thank you for the hot meals when I pick up the boys. Thank you for making the curtains in my living room and making so many projects with the kids.

Nana made all the kids Christmas pajamas. They are so cute!

Thank you for loving me. I love you, Mom.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Happy Friday the 13th!!

I leave Monday for a conference in Chicago. I will be gone till Thursday. There is so much going on at work, home, Casey's school and baseball; it just feels like a REALLY bad time to go away. Oh well. I will make the most of it. I hope to learn a lot about marketing health insurance to the individual rather than to employers/brokers. That is the focus of my conference. Sounds fun, aye? Want to join me??!!

Best Friends Forever!

Erik hopped on like he had been riding for years!

Erik will be riding this bike without training wheels in no time! The rain this week has kept him off his bike and he has not been happy. He loves his bike!!

Erik helping  at the Oak Park Community Garden last weekend.

Some days you just REALLY need a BIG beer, right?

I love it when we let Erik stay up with Casey and he JUST CAN'T DO IT!! Adorable.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Tips to prevent a burglary

We've had several burglaries in our neighborhood. Our garage was robbed the day before Halloween. That sucked. We still haven't replaced Pedar's bikes. Recently a young woman was breaking into houses via the back sliding door. A front door was kicked-in off of Mission and Mendota last week. The family was on vacation. They turned the entire place upside down.


1. Of course I look familiar. I was here just last week cleaning your carpets, painting your shutters, or delivering your new refrigerator.
2. Hey, thanks for letting me use the bathroom when I was working in your yard last week. While I was in there, I unlatched the back window to make my ret...urn a little easier.
3. Love those flowers. That tells me you have taste... and taste means there are nice things inside. Those yard toys your kids leave out always make me wonder what type of gaming system they have
4. Yes, I really do look for newspapers piled up on the driveway. And I might leave a pizza flyer in your front door to see how long it takes you to remove it..
5. If it snows while you're out of town, get a neighbor to create car and foot tracks into the house.. Virgin drifts in the driveway are a dead giveaway.
6. If decorative glass is part of your front entrance, don't let your alarm company install the control pad where I can see if it's set. That makes it too easy.
7. A good security company alarms the window over the sink. And the windows on the second floor, which often access the master bedroom - and your jewelry. It's not a bad idea to put motion detectors up there too.
8. It's raining, you're fumbling with your umbrella, and you forget to lock your door - understandable. But understand this: I don't take a day off because of bad weather.
9. I always knock first. If you answer, I'll ask for directions somewhere or offer to clean your gutters. (Don't take me up on it.)
10. Do you really think I won't look in your sock drawer? I always check dresser drawers, the bedside table, and the medicine cabinet.
11. Here's a helpful hint: I almost never go into kids' rooms.
12. You're right: I won't have enough time to break into that safe where you keep your valuables. But if it's not bolted down, I'll take it with me.
13. A loud TV or radio can be a better deterrent than the best alarm system. If you're reluctant to leave your TV on while you're out of town, you can buy a $35 device that works on a timer and simulates the flickering glow of a real television.

1. Sometimes, I carry a clipboard. Sometimes, I dress like a lawn guy and carry a rake. I do my best to never, ever look like a crook.
2. The two things I hate most: loud dogs and nosy neighbors.
3. I'll break a window to get in, even if it makes a little noise. If your neighbor hears one loud sound, he'll stop what he's doing and wait to hear it again. If he doesn't hear it again, he'll just go back to what he was doing. It's human nature.
4. I'm not complaining, but why would you pay all that money for a fancy alarm system and leave your house without setting it?
5. I love looking in your windows. I'm looking for signs that you're home, and for flat screen TVs or gaming systems I'd like. I'll drive or walk through your neighborhood at night, before you close the blinds, just to pick my targets.
6. Avoid announcing your vacation on your Facebook page. It's easier than you think to look up your address.
7. To you, leaving that window open just a crack during the day is a way to let in a little fresh air. To me, it's an invitation.

8. If you don't answer when I knock, I try the door. Occasionally, I hit the jackpot and walk right in.

Sources: Convicted burglars in North Carolina , Oregon , California , and Kentucky ; security consultant Chris McGoey, and Richard T. Wright, a criminology professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, who interviewed 105 burglars for his book Burglars on the Job.

Protection for you and your home:

Here's a more humane way to wreck someone's evil plans for you:


A receptionist in a church in a high risk area was concerned about someone coming into the office on Monday to rob them when they were counting the collection. She asked the local police department about using pepper spray and they recommended to her that she get a can of wasp spray instead.
The wasp spray , they told her, can shoot up to twenty feet away and is a lot more accurate, while with the pepper spray, they have to get too close to you and could overpower you. The wasp spray temporarily blinds an attacker until they get to the hospital for an antidote. She keeps a can on her desk in the office and it doesn't attract attention from people like a can of pepper spray would. She also keeps one nearby at home for home protection.

Put your car keys beside your bed at night.

If you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house, just press the panic button for your car.

The alarm will be set off, and the horn will continue to sound until either you turn it off or the car battery dies.

This tip came from a neighborhood watch coordinator.

Next time you come home for the night and you start to put your keys away, think of this: It's a security alarm system that you probably already have and requires no installation. Test it.

It will go off from most everywhere inside your house and will keep honking until your battery runs down or until you reset it with the button on the key fob chain.

It works if you park in your driveway or garage. If your car alarm goes off when someone is trying to break into your house, odds are the burglar/rapist won't stick around. After a few seconds all the neighbors will be looking out their windows to see who is out there and sure enough the criminal won't want that. And remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot. The alarm can work the same way there.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Did every bunny have a great Easter?

We hope you had a super Easter because we sure did!! Casey woke up about 6:45 a.m. raring to go to find his basket. Erik slept till 7:45 a.m.

Casey's egg basket riddle!

We had to let Casey wake him up so we could get him ready to leave by 8:30 a.m. to make it to church 30 minutes early for the 9:30 a.m. service at St. John's. 

Erik's egg basket riddle!

We met Mor-Mor, Pop-Pop, Aunt Dagny, Jeff, Lisa, Lindsey, Megan and Aunt Lorraine at St. John's. We all fit in one pew. It was a gorgeous service. The organ, horns and choir were absolutely beautiful.

We got home close to Noon and quickly had a late breakfast and started cleaning and cooking.
The awesome Grand-People! We love you!!

1....2....3....HUNT ON!!!

Liam loved the hunt!

Dagny had the best Easter hat!!

Pedar made the most delicious ribs and red potato salad!!

Everybody won at our egg hunt!!

Sweet Lou joined us for dinner and graciously took a group picture of us. Thank you, Lou!

Happy Easter everyone!! Much love to you and yours! I'm grateful to Mor-Mor for the delicious green salad, Dagny for the delicious dessert, Bridget for the drinks and appetizers and Nana for the decorations. Thank you for the beautiful flowers and love. I am so blessed to have such an awesome family.