10 Inspiring Life Lessons From A Brave Mom -TIP Article

Hey everyone!! I was asked to write a guest post for Tuned In Parents. Of course I happily accepted and I think it was a great opportunity 🙂 You can find my post here http://tunedinparents.com/2015/04/03/10-inspiring-life-lessons-from-a-brave-mom/ If you have a chance give it a read and let me know what you think!!

In other news we are getting ready for Easter over here so that means a Saturday morning trip to the grocery store. I am going to try and sneak in a quick hike at the arboretum first so hopefully I will be nice and relaxed 😉 We are not doing the traditional Easter ham we actually were given a beef tenderloin so we are going to grill that up with mushrooms and wrap it in bacon. Oh my mouth is watering already! Then we have an Easter egg hunt planned for later in the afternoon with my bestie and her kids so that should be a blast!

We were able to get (gasp!) a babysitter Thursday night so we were able to help personal trainer celebrate at his retirement party. It was tons of fun! Judging from the tiny headache I had yesterday I may have had a little too much fun 😉 Luckily Avery took a nap yesterday so I was able to rest. Avery was very busy “shopping” with her shopping cart yesterday and playing with her toys (she was trying to ignore me). I think she was a little upset with me that I wasn’t home for bedtime on Thursday night. Friday morning when she woke up she wouldn’t look at me or talk to me. I was good enough to hold her hand and rub her feet though 😉  I also found an alarming present by the mailbox yesterday that Percy had left for us. A mole. You all know how much I hate mice and moles are in the same category. I wondered why Percy refused to come in the house on Thursday and now I know. Of course we had to let him know how proud we were of him.

I hope you all have a wonderful Easter weekend!!

Adventures of She-Ra and Percy

When they told me that my daughter was going to come early I tried to prepare myself thinking she would be a little less physical because she was early. When she threw her nuk out of her incubator that should have been a sign of things to come. This chick is cray-cray. She seriously never stops. Our tree this year is only half decorated which I expected anyway but I am reconsidering any decorations on it at all. She has extendo arms. I have seen them in action. We hung all of the ornaments so they would not be within arms reach and she still manages to get them down. If we catch her taking them down she tries to put them back while smiling at us sweetly. If she wants something or wants to do something she is going to do it and there really isn’t any stopping her. I think when she gets up in the morning and goes to play with her toys they are like “Oh crap, she’s here again to abuse us.” Avery feels things or people should move for her instead of her moving if something or someone is in her way. She has the hand thing down to a tee. If you are in her way you get a hand waving you or pushing you to the side. If she thinks she can get around you or over you she just crawls or tries to walk on you. She literally walks on me. Her poor toys get stepped on all of the time. We got her coloring books and Sesame Street crayons for Christmas this year and loves them. We colored at the table and she had a great time. Someone I am not going to mention any names here but someone let her play with the crayons after the coloring session was over. Later that evening Avery came up to us with purple crayon on her face and the Count had a big chunk missing.

Avery and the cat are partners in crime for sure. They may act like they don’t like each other but if it’s a job too big for just one they team up. The other day I went out to the mailbox anticipating tons of pretty Christmas cards in the mail and I guess in my excitement I forgot to shut one of the doors when I went outside. So that only left the screen door as a barrier between the two stinkers and the great outdoors. Since our mailbox is literally right next to the steps on our porch I didn’t think getting the mail would be a big deal. When I came around the corner oohing and ahhing over the pretty cards I saw a big orange cat escaping to freedom and a little girl in a pink shirt holding the door open for him with a big smile on her face. Ugh getting Percy back in the house is like wrestling a wild alligator. There is tons of fur flying and crazy sounds that come out of his mouth. Even if he doesn’t get very far a person should really be wearing a leather suit to put that cat away. For the most part Avery stays away from Percy unless they are plotting on me or she is in a silly mood. Like tonight when she took her cup and started banging Percy’s lower back with it. If there is one thing you don’t do its touching that cat’s lower back. If he doesn’t get his revenge right away he will wait until the time is right to strike. He has done it to many people. He doesn’t forget that one. He doesn’t retaliate against Avery with brute force like he does to the rest of his enemies he just makes sure she sees him getting extra attention. And the begging; those two team up and beg for food constantly. It is very hard to eat anything around here without an audience. I actually snuck around to eat a banana this morning because I really didn’t feel like sharing. I know it sounds bad but I was really hungry.

We shall see what tomorrow brings……

IMG_20141224_122505
There is fire in those eyes…..
IMG_20141225_205817
This time she left evidence behind.
IMG_20141225_174137
Beggars from way back. Yes, I have a cat blanket. Don’t judge it is very warm and it was made with love by my aunt. No, I am not a crazy cat lady.
IMG_20141225_104203
Before the Count incident

The Baby Gates

The baby gate world is still a little new to me. This is actually our third house we have lived in since we had Avery. Our first house which we owned we never had to put gates up because Avery was only crawling when we lived there. The second house that we rented was a small ranch style so no baby gates needed. Now we have bought another home and this house is a different story. Some days I wish I could gate off every room. We only have two gates right now one at the bottom of the stairs and one upstairs. When we first moved in I thought for sure I would hate the gates. Since I am mechanically not smart I thought I would have a hard time with them. We ended up with the easiest gates we could find. They are so easy that if Avery was a little stronger she could open them. She knows how they work she just isn’t strong enough to open them yet. I say yet cause the girl is like a young She-Ra.

There are a couple of reasons why I love them. The first being is they keep Percy aka my cat out of our bedrooms. Percy’s favorite thing to do is lounge on our beds and sleep the day away. His fave room is stepson’s room. If he can get in there you may never see him again. On the rare occasion that both gates are open you see a huge flash of orange running through like he is on the last leg of a marathon. Usually, Percy is a slow mover unless there is food involved. He has now added the gates being open to his list. I spent the better half of my morning lint rolling and washing our bedding because of him.

The next reason is because they allow me to be lazy. This past weekend we celebrated Christmas with husband’s side of the family. Husband had a great idea to put the presents that we were taking in a basket and then put the presents that we received in the basket instead of carrying bags and boxes around. So when we got home the basket filled up even more with things that needed to go upstairs but I have been too lazy to take up. After catching Avery in the basket for the 500th time I finally decided to take it upstairs. I was doing some cleaning up there too so I put the basket and all of my cleaning supplies on the other side of the gate so she couldn’t get to them until I was ready to go up. Maybe a little mean since she stood there staring at the basket and trying her darndest to get to it.

The biggest reason and probably the only reason I have found that I really dislike them is that I am mechanically not smart. See these gates have what I think you call a hook and eye latch? (Maybe I am learning?) In the middle of the night these things could wake anyone up. I usually still make a trip to the bathroom or Percy gets locked upstairs in the middle of the night; so I am always fumbling around with these silly things in the dark. I guess you never realize how much noise stuff makes until you have a sleeping toddler. You can usually find me standing in front of where the gate should be looking for the gate (cause it swung out to the next county when I opened it) with my iPod on for light. Then after I find the thing I have to turn my iPod back on to find the latch. This is usually after I fumbled around for a good two minutes thinking I know where it is. You would think I would learn my lesson but I never do. I do have some photo evidence of my gate happenings below 😉

2014-12-15 001 002
Pretty self-explanatory
2014-12-15 001 001
Yup I’m lazy

You are not going to win chores, not today

2014-10-23 001 001
Fur trap!!
2014-10-23 001 002
My cutie waiting to play ❤ Notice the maroon carpet
2014-10-23 001 003
Dining room flooring. It looked like a good idea at the time.

Since we have moved into a much larger home than we have had previously I find myself cleaning all of the time. I face a couple new obstacles in my new cleaning adventure. The two biggest obstacles are my daughter and my cat. They are the messiest people I have ever met. (Yes my cat is human) I have come to the conclusion that cleaning with a toddler and a cat is like cleaning a desk full of papers with a fan on. For example the other day I swept, swiffered and moped our dining room. About ten minutes later my cat puked and my toddler spilled milk all over. Ugh! Now the milk wouldn’t be such a problem except we have really dark flooring in our dining room and milk seems to show up even after it is cleaned. And the cat puke, well its gross. I am not sure what I was thinking when I picked out the flooring. It. shows. everything. I think my cat is mulching or something because I have never had to deal with so much fur in my life and my poor floor is suffering. Now it is a dark brown with a hint of orange fur.

In our living room some idiot installed maroon carpet. (It wasn’t me) Why in the world would you do that?? It shows everything and then some. If Avery eats one cracker you know it. If I leave the house when I come back I know everything my daughter and husband ate just by the crumbs on the floor. I vacuum at least once a day if not twice. Between the fur and the crumbs I am almost ready to rip the stupid carpet out myself. I had big plans for what little tax return I would be getting. Now those have disappeared because I have set my sights on one huge maroon eyesore that needs to go far far away.

The other day my bestie stopped over and we were talking about cleaning and how much we didn’t want to do it. She works full-time and I know how hard it is to keep a house clean while working. Our convo brought me back to when I did work full-time and how much my “week-ends” sucked. I put “week-ends” in quotations because it never really felt like I had any time off. Between grocery shopping and cleaning it seemed like I never left work. Then I started thinking about my life now. Here I am blessed with this wonderful little girl that I get to spend every day with and I waste most of my time cleaning. She doesn’t care if every nook and cranny of the house is clean or the laundry is done. All she cares about is her toys and her cartoons are available. I almost feel guilty that almost every morning is dedicated to dishes, laundry and other chores. It should be dedicated to spending time with my little girl who is growing up way too fast. Before I know it I will be back to work and my “week-ends” are going to stink again and I will be wishing I would have spent more time with my little when I was at home with her. So today the chores are not going to win. I am going to play, dance and repeat.