Saturday, January 31, 2009

Simple Saturday...

Not much going on around here, I'm busy as usual and finally have a minute to sit down and blog a bit. I'm looking forward to a weekend of simple pleasures and relaxing time spent with my family.

It started out last night when I went to a Bingo/fundraising event with a friend at our local high school. It was fun but also quite a fiasco. It turned out that a second set of bingo cards that were ordered, never arrived and they had to make photocopies of cards to give everyone enough sets. Well, it doesn't take a genius to realize that that is going to mean more than one winner per game. They ended up having a drawing for the prize if there were multiple winners which would have irritated me if that had happened to me but my cards were not copied, nor were they winners so it didn't matter either way. The prizes were Vera Bradley bags which I know people love but most of them aren't my style anyway, I wasn't THAT disappointed although there were a few I would have liked. We ended up going over to my friend's house after the bingo and had a few (healthy) snacks. I had a nice time.

Today, I'm doing my interent stuff and then heading to the Y for some cardio. I worked out really hard yesterday which felt great and I must be getting used to it again because I'm surprisingly not that sore today. I climbed 39 flights of stairs in 15 minutes on the escalator looking stair climber thing (yes, that's the technical name of it) and thought I'd be aching today...I guess I'm in pretty good shape for a fat chick! ha ha! I don't talk about my diet much because I hate to set myself up for failure but I've lost 11.4 pounds so far! Lots more to go but it's a start...

The Son and I are going to travel to the dollar store later, The Husband has lots of work to do for his on-line classes so I thought it might be nice to get the little guy out of the house and he wants to make his own valentines for his friends this year so I thought the dollar store was a good place to start. I also found a great Valentine's Day gift idea tutorial on line that I want to use. I'll link to it after I make the gifts but let's just say it's cute and inexpensive...two of my favorite things!

Tonight we're going out for dinner at a local pizza/pasta place for which we have a coupon. I'm going to pick up a menu on my way home from the Y so that I can be prepared to order something on the healthier side. Phyllis, the lady who runs my weight loss program would call that "good planning."

I think we're going to go see "Hotel for Dogs" tomorrow, The Son's been asking, and asking, and asking... sounds cute enough, I'm sure we'll like it.

I guess I'd better get moving if I want to get everything done today... I thought I'd be relaxing but from the looks of things... maybe not so much! Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Battling the winter blahs...

I don't usually talk about things that upset me on my blog because I like it to be positive and I like it to be the place where I can try to put my best thoughts forward, but I've had some developments in my life in the past couple days that truly stress and sadden me. If you're a regular reader of this blog, you know I lost my mom to brain cancer a little over a year ago. It's been really hard to deal with and just makes every other stress in life magnified. I'm the kind of person who deals with stress by avoiding it, not talking about things that stress me out and not talking TO people who ask too many questions about the things that stress me out. I'm not saying this is the right way to be, it's probably not, but at this point in my life, I know if I don't tackle little stresses this way, I honestly won't get through the day. There'd be a big nervous breakdown in my future and I'm trying to avoid that since The Husband and The Son need me. I really don't like to talk finances on my blog but just so you understand, we still have two mortgages, the City House is still not ready to put on the market and we really need to get rid of it... I probably don't need to say much more, huh?

So... in an effort to be positive, I am going to make a list of some of the wonderful things I DO have in my life...the things that keep me going and keep me from sinking into an abyss of depression and stress.

Obviously, the biggest things would be:

1. The Husband: I'm so fortunate to have a husband who treats me so well, who loves me and supports me even though there are times when we make each other crazy! Watching him be a Daddy to The Son is one of the biggest joys in my day. He's a good man and I'm a lucky girl.

2. The Son: The biggest joy in my life. It's been really difficult the past couple weeks, seeing him grow up so quickly without my mom around. His fifth birthday was SO bittersweet, not because he's aging but because he doesn't have her around, she'd think he was hilarious and I know the two of the would be having the best times together. I try to remember the special things she did for my Sister and I as kids and the way that she raised us and I've been trying to pass that on to The Son. I think he's turning into a great kid so The Husband and I must be doing something right.

I'm also thankful for:

3. My Family and friends: I know how much my family loves me and it always keeps me going. The scrapbooking weekend I just spent with my sister was SO much fun and was one of the most relaxing times I've had in a long while. I knew The Son was being taken care of by The Husband and MIL and that made it easy for me to have fun. My Dad and I don't talk as much as we probably should but there's never any doubt in my mind that he loves me and for that I am grateful. My niece with all her cuteness keeps me laughing AND I'm getting a new niece soon to spoil and love...what could be better than that?

4. My dogs: Sure they have their moments that I'm not so thankful for but usually, they know just when I need a snuggle or a "press down" or some general goofiness to make me smile. My newest pup Ziggy is such a joy, I just love the big oaf. (I have to let you know he just peed on the couch because he doesn't like the snow/ice outside and I'm still saying I love him so that should tell you something, I guess I should be thankful for microfiber and it's ease of cleaning too...)

5. My message board girl friends: These are girls I've "known" now for over five years. I met them all when we were pregnant with our January 2004 children. Lots of changes have happened over the years, some good and some bad but I know that the girls who hang in there and remain my friends are people I'll always be friends with. I hope to get to meet all of them in person someday.

6. Facebook: I've written about it before but this crazy facebook thing has gotten me back in touch with numerous friends from the past, "kids" I did high school plays with, The Peter Pan to my Wendy, sorority sisters who I thought were lost forever and even an old friend from church choir many, many years ago. It's a really cool thing to reconnect and I'm enjoying it immensely.

7. Our YMCA: I really feel at home there. I enjoy working there, working out there and the general family atmosphere that I get when I go there. I was also lucky enough to meet two really good friends through the Y. I'm lucky to have them.

I guess that's enough for now, when I think about it, I could probably list even more...I'm sure it's not the most exciting post for you to read but I do feel a little bit better, I have a lot to keep me going even though at times it's hard to remember that.

Have a great day everyone!

Monday, January 26, 2009

It's Monday!

Hi Everyone! I'm back from my scrapbooking weekend and I have to say, we had a fantastic time! It was very relaxing and great to get to spend time with The Sister. I got lots of pages finished in my scrapbook but of course, I still have hundreds of pictures that I printed that are still not "scrapped."

I've got a busy week ahead of me. The food at the retreat center was decidedly delicious (made by an Amish woman, you know how I love those Amish and their food) but also not very healthy and I get weighed in on Thursday for my diet group so I have to work out a lot this week. I was able to get my grocery shopping finished this morning after work so that's one less thing to do this week. I have off from my AM job on Wednesday and I'm already looking forward to sleeping in, that is if you call getting up at 7:30 or 8:00 sleeping in, which I bet many of you do knowing there's lots of bloggy moms out there.

I won't bore you with the mundane details of my life nor will I tell you what I have planned to blog about because it seems that never comes to fruition when I mention specific things. I will tell you about something funny that The Son did this Friday though...

One of The Son's teachers stopped me on Friday when I picked him up from school and told me that he mentioned to her that she looked "exquisite" that day. He said he really liked the blue in her shirt and it made her eyes look beautiful, mind you, her eyes are dark brown! We both got a kick out of him saying that...the kid is a smooth talker already I tell you! He wasn't even trying to get out of trouble...funny boy!

Well, I'm off to pack lunch and my work out clothes and all the other junk I need for my day... have a good Monday everyone!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

I think I'm on hiatus...

I can't seem to get inspired to blog. I don't know why, I just can't.

I am going away this weekend for a Scrapbooking Girls Gone Wild weekend with my sister. OK, honestly, it won't be that wild, it's at a Christian retreat center and my sister's pregnant so...

It will be fun and creative and relaxing which is just what I need. I printed out over 500 pictures today so I have a lot to keep me busy. I still need to organize my copious amount of supplies and pack my suitcase, we don't leave until tomorrow evening so in my mind, I think I still have plenty of time. Plenty.

Anyway...I'll be back after the weekend. Have a good one!

Monday, January 19, 2009

The party's over!

We had a great time at the Rock Star Party this weekend. I think it's safe to say it was a success. I still have company visiting from Connecticut so I'm just going to do a quick post to say hello to my millions three readers/commenters out there and leave you with a quick picture of the bash!

Are you scared? These three are a heavy-metal rockin' bunch...don't ya think?

This week I'll be trying to post more pictures of the party along with my mantel decorations I mentioned. I'll also be telling you about my version of a "Girls Gone Wild" weekend that my sister and I will be having this weekend coming up...I can't wait!

Have a great day everyone!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Happy 5th birthday to my sweet, sweet boy!

Today is The Son's fifth birthday! It's so hard to believe. Five is such a milestone to me. He's officially a "big kid" now. Unfortunately, he's not feeling so well this morning, I'm hoping it's "just" a cold. I really don't want his party to be ruined for him for tomorrow.

I decided to decorate my mantel in an "All about The Son" style. I put things he really likes, like trains, cars and dinosaurs into my apothecary jars and added some other odds and ends that really say "The Son" it came out really cute and I'll show you later this weekend after I take pictures. I want to go ahead and upload all the pictures from the party tomorrow at the same time.

In the center of the mantel I put snapshots of The Son on (or very close to) each birthday that he's had. Here are the pictures I used:

His Rock Star photo is going to be displayed as well. I think it's all going to come together really nicely.

Happy, happy birthday my love...please don't be sick!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

CityMomma/CountryMomma's to do list for...

Thursday 1-15-08

5:45 Hit snooze
5:50 Hit snooze again
6:00 One more time...I showered last night
6:10 Get up
6:45-8:30- Work at the school for child care
8:30- home to take care of The Son and organize for the day (this includes the blogging and internet junk I have to do)
10:45-12:15- The Son- Gymnastics at the Y
12:15 - Drop off The Son and the MIL back at home.
1:00 - 2:00- Living Healthy, Living Well meeting back at the Y
2:15- Go back home, pick up The Son and MIL head out to Delaware for party supply store and dollar store. Who knows how long that will all take?
6:15-6:45- The Son to karate
6:45 - head home, make dinner, make cupcakes for birthday at school tomorrow, clean, organize decorate, etc., etc., etc.
8:30- facilitate getting The Son to bed, the MIL will probably do most of it
9:15- 9:40- Watch "The Office" through the DVR to avoid commercials.
9:40-9:45- freak out because I still have way too much to do
9:45- realize it will all get done one way or another and continue watching shows recorded on the DVR until I go to sleep in another hour or so.

Wow! That's a lot to do, notice there is no work out time on there and also no scheduled time to eat lunch. I'll have to squeeze the lunch in somewhere but I'm afraid the work out will get pushed until tomorrow.

I know it's not an interesting blog post but I wanted you to realize why I still didn't get pictures of the decorating posted yet. Gotta Run! Lots to do!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Facebook...bringing people together, one friend at a time.

I'm taking a break from my Rockin' party posts today because I didn't get a chance to take pictures of my "All About The son" mantel or the VIP passes that I made for the kids. Wednesdays are my busy days so I'll have to postpone that post. I did want to tell you about my newest time waster/addiction though.


Are you on facebook? I signed up not too long ago because some of my friends on my message board were on it and I thought it sounded like fun. I never anticipated having that many "friends" but I'm already up to 85 in a matter of months. I know many people have hundreds of friends but really, I thought I'd hit 20 or so and be done with it. People are just coming out of the woodwork!

I have reconnected with lots of "kids" from high school, (and some even from elementary school) and it's really cool to see their status updates and the various directions that life has taken all of us. We had our 20 year HS reunion last year so it's been a really long time.

I've found, or been found by, former coworkers, college roommates, guys I casually dated and remained friendly with, and former students who are now parents themselves. It's been really cool. About a month ago, I found some "kids" who I taught when they were in third and fourth grade. They were brother and sister, I had the brother first and then a year later had the sister. I taught in what would be considered by most (well, by everyone) as one of the "worst" neighborhoods in Philadelphia. "Good" students were few and far between. As much as I loved my students, even the more troubled ones, these two were two of my favorites, really sweet, hard-working, friendly kids and I've thought about them for years, unable to find them, until facebook.

I sent them a message and "friended" them and never heard anything until last night when I received a message from the sister, I'll call her "B" she wrote me a lovely, lovely letter that had me feeling so special and realizing that I did make a difference, at least in a few kids lives. I won't tell you her private information of course, she tells me everything that's been going with them and it sounds pretty good, but I did want to mention a couple things B wrote to me that just made me feel so great. All in all it sounds like both the brother and sister are doing pretty well, still working on finding themselves and figuring out what they want to do with their lives. I'm not positive, but if I am doing my math correctly, I'm thinking B is about 19 and the brother, "J" is probably about 21. (Yikes. I'm old.)

"It's amazing We've been thinking about you since we moved away from [the school]. We were looking for you and nothing came up. We missed you so much! Like you really have no idea!"

"I'm so glad that you found me and remembered us. We've missed you so much and our old neighborhood, Hopefully we'll meet again in person. Cause I know my brother would want to give you a big hug (I mean a really big hug) for making a difference in his life."

Wow. I mean WOW! It still gives me chills and brings tears to my eyes at the sweet things she said. I am definitely going to make an effort to get back in touch, I want that "really big hug!" It's so nice to know there's kids out there for whom I've made a difference. It's a good feeling. Thanks facebook.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Rockin' party fun!

Hi all! Yesterday I mentioned that this Saturday we will be holding our first ever "Good Old-Fashioned at Home Birthday Party" for The Son who is turning five on Friday. The coolest kids in the pre-school set are invited, and so far we have affirmative answers from thirteen of them, including The Son and The Niece. The final date to RSVP is tomorrow so I'm guessing that a few more might also say that they're coming.

I'm frightened. That's a lot of kids.

I have a few activities planned but if you feel like commenting and offering suggestions for more, please, please, please do. The Teen-Niece in New Hampshire says we need to play some Ozzy and that "Crazy Train" would be ideal. Considering The Son's love of Thomas the Tank Engine, I think we might just have to do that. The Reverend W. Awdry might roll over in his grave at that, but I reviewed the song's lyrics and they're not inappropriate so bring on the Ozzy!

When the guests enter, The Bouncer (aka The Husband who will be dressed in his Jimi Hendrix t-shirt) will be checking their names off of the guest list and providing VIP passes for all attendees. They will be ushered into the VIP lounge where they will design their goody bags. Following the goody bag design, they'll move to the kitchen where they will decorate slice and bake sugar cookies that will be baked and served later. We will probably have both of these activities going on at once depending on how timely the guests arrive.

The games will be as follows:
- bean bag toss
- musical rug (like musical chairs but you don't want to be on the rug when the music stops)
- pin the microphone on the mic stand
- Hot Potato (I'm going to design an CD cover with The Son on it that we'll pass around)
- Freeze dance

After the games, we're going to allow The Son to open his presents and then serve cake, cookies and snacks. The goody bags will be filled as the guests snack and after two hours of fun and festivities, they'll be sent on their way. I think it sounds like a fantastic "Good Old-Fashioned at Home Birthday Party," don't you?

I hope we survive.

Tomorrow, I'll tell you about the decorating. Have a great day!

Monday, January 12, 2009

For the record... (no pun intended)

Any adult female who is attending The Son's birthday party on Saturday and is related to me and not pregnant should STRONGLY consider wearing some type of "rocker-ish" outfit. If this description fits you, I know you must have something you can wear. I remember you in the 80s.

Rock ON! Let the countdown begin...

It's hard for me to believe, but this Friday is The Son's fifth birthday! It seems like such a milestone to me. I cannot believe it's gone by this quickly and I am so proud of the young man he is becoming. He's smart, sweet, independent and friendly. He's definitely his own person which is usually a good thing. I just love him and love being his Momma, so much.

So, he's decided that he wants his birthday party to be a "Rock Star" theme. He would have preferred a Pokemon theme but I'm sorry, this Momma can only take SO much Pokemon. It's probably safe to say Rock Star is his second choice, as soon as I mentioned that we could dress up like Rock stars...he was hooked. My kid loves the opportunity to wear a costume. (can't imagine where he got that ;) ) He's going to wear jeans and a t-shirt with a flannel shirt with cut off sleeves over it, he's got a red bandanna for his head and some cute pins to go on his shirt. We plan on tattooing up his arms so he'll look a little something like this:

This was the picture we used for his invitations. I will have to take a picture of the invites...they came out really cute! This will be The Son's first official birthday party! He's had plenty of celebrations of course, for his first and third birthdays we went to Disney World and for his other birthdays we had parties at my mom and dad's house but this year he'll be having a party at his own house with lots of his friends. Needless to say, he's pretty excited. I have lots of planning, creating and organizing to do this week so I'll be busy but I'll also have lots to post about. Tomorrow I'll tell you what the schedule of games and activities for the party is going to be. Have a great day!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Writer's Workshop...

Time for Mama Kat's Writer's workshop again... I started this at 10 this morning but am finally getting back to my computer to post it now. Who knows if anyone else in the workshop will read it?

Here are the prompts if you think you might like to participate, (even though it's very late):

1.) Describe your latest obsession.
2.) Ask a loved one to use 6 descriptive words to describe you and report your findings. How well do they know you?
3.) Who was your first bloggy friend? How did you find each other? Do you still correspond?
4.) Tell us about your pet! If you have a weird infatuation with your dog or cat we want to hear about it (or if they just plain drive you crazy)...but please don't compare them to children. It's just not the same.

I asked both The Husband and The son to give me six words that describe me so that I could complete prompt number 2. I did and they both gave me words, sweet words, kind words, loving words...I even told The Husband that they didn't all have to be good words (at which point he quickly added "demanding" and then just as quickly, took it back...that's OK, I've been known to be a tad bit demanding.) I finally had a minute to sit down and really think about the words that they gave me. The Son had some trouble with the list and I was surprised because the kid has a fantastic vocabulary but I didn't want to help him too much since I didn't want to influence his words. Here's what he came up with:

1. Momma
2. Mommy
3. pretty
4. stylin'
5. Best Momma ever
6. beautiful

It's a good list. It might not have the most variety, I mean, he did reference the fact that I'm his Momma THREE times and called me some variation of attractive THREE times. (I must admit the word stylin' threw me for a little loop though!) What I realized after looking at this list is that The Son simply thinks of me as his Beautiful Momma. He can't really come up with additional words because to him, "Momma" incorporates everything that I am...the best Momma ever. It's good to be someone's "best Momma ever."

The Husband's words are as follows: beautiful, kind, loving, (demanding although he recanted that one), motherly, creative and smart. If anyone ever asked me to describe MY mother, these are words I would have used. She was all of those things, yes, even demanding at times, but so am I. I love being a mother but sometimes it's very difficult to BE a mother when my mother is no longer with us. I miss her terribly and wish I still had her here to advise me on my journey through motherhood or just to call when The Son does something funny, or smart or even irritating, I never feel like anyone else can quite understand the way she did. It's nice to know however, that I must be doing OK so far because the two most important people in my life just described me using words I would use to describe MY mother. I think it's safe to say that they love me, I couldn't ask for much more than that. I hope that I can continue to live up to my Mom who was definitely my "best Momma ever."

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Not too much to say but lots going on...

Hi Everyone!

I'm a busy, busy Momma usual. I already did my morning job, The Son has school, I have a dentist appointment which is making me very nervous since it's probably my least favorite doctor to visit, other than that other know who I mean girls! I have swim lessons from 4-6:30 this evening and I also need to stop at the grocery store for something quick for dinner. Turkey sandwiches and soup sounds pretty appealing to me!

I start my training for the higher swim levels tonight so that should be interesting, The Son is also having his first eel lesson tonight, he says he's a little nervous but I think he'll be just fine. I have to practically pack a suitcase to bring with us considering I need towels, swim suits, work out clothes (if the dentist doesn't take too long) The Son's pjs for after the lessons and obviously regular clothes for me although I will be wearing those. This is probably TMI but I have a tendency to forget to bring underwear so after I work out and swim, I have nothing to put on. The Son finds this extremely hilarious which is why I had to blog about it. He's taken to calling me "underwear issues girl" after we get dressed at the Y. It makes me laugh.

My holiday decorations are still up and it's safe to say that I am officially tired of them now. I think it takes longer to put them away then it does to put them up, I've started working on taking them down but I still have LOTS more to do...this weekend will be loads of fun. Not.

So, I wanted to post to let people know, I'm alive, I'm busy and I'm working hard. I have to go pack the contents of my closet now and I must remember underwear. Have a great day everyone!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Back to life, back to reality.

Hi Everyone! It is now officially the new year for me, I have to go back to work today. I enjoyed my two weeks off immensely, so much in fact that it pains me to think about getting up at 5:45 every week day to get into work at 6:45. Yes, I'm done by 8:30 and by then, I'm awake but it's just the getting up that sucks.

I'm actually looking forward to going back to teaching swimming. (although I did enjoy that time off too) I still have the classes I've always had but I will also be training to teach some of the higher level classes to the older students. I think I'll enjoy the older kids who can already swim and are just perfecting technique...of course, it will call for me actually learning technique but I think 8 weeks of training will help me out with that.

We had lots of fun over the break:
  • we visited family,
  • had family visit us,
  • ate too much food,
  • thought about working out but didn't,
  • made resolutions I will surely break,
  • made resolutions I will hopefully keep,
  • visited museums
  • beat my Word Challenge high score on facebook, (yes, I'm at over 55,000 now!)
  • got lots of "new" friends on facebook,
  • realized that The Son's birthday is in a little over two weeks,
  • began making The Son's invitations because I waited too long to order them to be printed,
  • picked my giveaway winners,
  • realized that now I have to finish the items I was giving away so they can be sent,
  • enjoyed my holiday decorations,
  • got irritated by my holiday decorations because they're still up.
  • had a very uneventful birthday,
  • taught the dog a new trick,
  • was forced to "be May" from Pokemon a few too many times,
  • organized my craft room in anticipation for a scrapping weekend away in January,
But, best of all, I got to spend time with my family, friends and loved ones. I continue to reflect on a not so easy year and hope that 2009 will be better but I also realized that I do have lots of blessings and most importantly a wonderful husband and son who love me very much. Thanks for reading everyone...have a great day.

Friday, January 2, 2009

We have TWO winners!

Hi Everyone! I'd first like to thank you for entering my first ever giveaway! Even though it took me a while to get my act together and get it going, I really did enjoy it. The anticipating, the comments and all that other good stuff. I chose the winners fairly, I simply listed all the names of those who commented from all the posts that I said would be eligible and I ended up with 47 entries! It's funny because 47 is my favorite number! I used a number generator on line and generated two random numbers.

For the cards, I came up with #17 who just happened to be my friend Roshell from Always Smiling. Roshell and I have "known" each other for years, we met on a message board when we were both pregnant with our now almost 5 year olds. I have to say, I'm glad that she won.

My second winner, for the Scrabble tile necklace, is my sister-in-law Delphine! It's the one and only time she's ever commented on my blog! See people, it pays to comment! Delphine is married to The Husband's brother and she lives in New England. Unfortunately, we don't get to see as much of them as we'd like. She doesn't have a blog but I know where to find her! Hooray Delphine! I hope this means you'll keep commenting...hee hee.

Thanks again everyone and Congratulations to my winners, I'll get your prizes sent out soon! I think I'll be doing this again someday, it was so much fun. Have a great day everyone!

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Happy New Year! Hope it's a good one!