Friday, July 25, 2014

Ask & you shall receive

Apparently some of you aren't content to just imagine my 3-year-old's accidental twerking skills; you want to see them in action. I can't blame you, considering how hard it made me laugh at the time. Fortunately the kid rarely turns down an opportunity to dance like a fool, so I was able to semi-recreate it yesterday just by pumping up the jams before nap time. I say semi because the twerking attempts just weren't the same as the original ones in the restaurant booth... but hopefully you can enjoy his rad moves anyway.


And even though I don't think I got any requests to see Avery in action, you get to see her anyway. Not only did she learn how to wave over the weekend, but she also learned how to clap! (Please ignore my overly enthusiastic voice in the background.)


What's that? You need one more video? You got it! Our little lady hasn't quite mastered the art of crawling, but thanks to a little help from her current favorite food on the planet, she has mastered the art of body surfing on the floor. (Don't judge me for letting her eat off the floor; it's not like I'm having her lick pureed carrots off it or anything!)


Happy Friday, my friends!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Calgon, take me away!

Here are two amusing things my children have learned over the past several days in Dallas:

1. Avery has learned how to wave, and it's as cute as you would imagine.

2. Davis learned how to twerk, and it was as funny as you would imagine. (Note: no one actually taught him how to twerk; he was just dancing like a crazy person at dinner last night and the twerking happened by accident but it made me laugh to the point of tears.)

Here is one bad thing my children have learned over the past several days:

1. How to drive me totally insane

The tantrums from our 3-year-old that I have witnessed this week have created so many special moments that I will truly cherish for the rest of my life. And I have decided the only thing better than dealing with a tantruming threenager is dealing with a tantruming threenager in the 100 degree heat in public while toting a baby on your hip. Sure do wish I could bottle up all that preciousness and keep it forever! Relatedly, I have learned on this trip that putting Davis to bed at 5:30pm because he is overtired and totally out of control does not fix the problem; it only causes him to wake up at 5:00am the next day and get a head start on his tantrums.

And Avery. Oh, my sweet Avery. She has actually been an angel in comparison to her brother... however, the screaming when Mommy leaves the room thing almost made my brain explode 187 times. The most impressive incident occurred when we were in a restaurant and I had to take her brother to the bathroom. I left her at the table with my mom, a pacifier, and a container of Puffs cereal, but she got so hysterical and so loud in the 4 minutes that I was gone that my mom had to leave the table and bring her to me in the bathroom. Because why in the world would I want even 4 minutes with just one child instead of two on this trip?! Silly me.

Anyway, now that I got all that snarky negativity out of my system, here are a few pics to prove that there were a few moments of happiness thrown into the second half of our trip to Dallas:

Monday: lots of loud screaming, popsicles with the cousins at Steel City Pops, wearing sunglasses inside, a pedicure at Franny's while 1/2 children napped, and a 5:30pm bedtime
Tuesday morning: early morning swinging at Preston Hollow Park (with a quick visit from my friend Lauren!), a play date with my friend Sara and her boys,  and lunch at Bread Winners 
Tuesday afternoon: a visit to the Frontiers of Flight Museum and dinner/twerking at Taco Diner
Thanks for keeping us busy for a few days, Dallas, but we're ready to come home to you today, Austin!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Dallas-ing it up

A few months ago, Wade told me he was going to be tied up with work obligations this past weekend. It didn't take me long to decide that Davis, Avery, and I needed to figure out alternative plans for a few days to keep ourselves busy. So on Saturday morning, off to Dallas to we went! 

And now, allow me to state the obvious: traveling with children and without your spouse (if yours is a very helpful one, like mine fortunately is) is TIRING. We are having a good time, but I also feel like I did in the newborn days, physically and mentally exhausted. Davis has also been in rare form lately for unknown reasons (other than the fact that he is 3), and the very loud tantrums he has been having in public over the past several days are wearing me down. 

But we will overcome! And we will continue to have fun! And make memories! And stuff! For the sake of all those memories made, here's what we've been up to so far...

Saturday: Avery's first time to New York Sub, swimming at their cousin's birthday party, playing with Franny, dinner at Mi Cocina, and Davis bunking with Mommy for the long weekend
Sunday morning: adventures at NorthPark, a delicious lunch at Grub Burger Bar, and a grocery run at Whole Foods
Saturday afternoon: playing with their cousins and dinner with my sister-, brother-, and mother-in-law who also happened to be in town (no pictures of that because I was busy wrangling grumpy children)

To be continued...

Friday, July 18, 2014

Dinner standoff

Like many mothers, I have no desire to add "short order cook" to my resume. I make an effort to pick relatively healthy recipes that should not be too offensive to Davis in order to keep the peace at dinnertime, and usually it works.

This week, it has the opposite of worked. (That's my fancy way of saying, "it hasn't worked," just in case you needed translation.)

He has been abnormally picky over the last couple of weeks ever since catching the stomach bug while we were in Colorado, so I'll blame that. Regardless, we have had a showdown nearly every night this week, and it has made dinnertime as special as you would think.  For your amusement, allow me to present to you: the evolution of a food war with a 3-year-old. (Keep in mind that we typically make one big meal at the beginning of the week and eat leftovers several times.)

Sunday night: he is served dinner, he refuses to eat it, he goes to bed hungry.

Monday night: he is served dinner, we convince him to eat just one bite, which he does... and then gags back up (into my hand!) to prove a point. He goes to bed hungry.

Tuesday night: wanting to set him up for success, I remove anything he might find repulsive in the meal, and serve it to him. He eats 2 or 3 bites, then declares he doesn't like it. He goes to bed hungry.

Wednesday night: I don't even bother with the stupid dinner; I just tell him if he will eat a handful of sliced carrots, he can have some chips and guacamole. After a lot of whining, threats of time-out, and arguing, he eats the freaking carrots and gets the chips and guac.

Thursday night: screw it. Peanut butter sandwich and goldfish it is.


Looking back, it seems clear to me that though we won more of the battles (in terms of not giving into his pickiness or whining each night), it looks like he has won the war. Darn those threenagers! We parents are no match for their stubbornness and relentless whining. Here's to hoping we'll get payback when they have to change our diapers in the nursing home!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Little monsters

Most of the time, I feel like we are doing a decent job raising our kids. Neither of them has a criminal record, nor have they made an appearance on Teen Mom. They don't like Justin Bieber and they have yet to set the house on fire. I can't think of a time when either of them has snuck out of the house or stolen money from us. So, I mean, I don't want to sound full of myself... but basically, they are perfect. 

Or at least I thought they were until I spent a little time playing with them on Monday afternoon.

Tell me: what is going on here? 


What happened to females being born with a maternal instinct?! I'm not sure which is worse - the fact that she is trying to eat the baby's head, or the way she is gouging its eye out with her middle finger. 

And then there's this guy.


Whatcha cookin' there, bud? Oh, you're just sauteeing Baby Monkey (aka: your favorite companion since birth)? That's normal. Don't forget the salt!

Seriously, these children are monsters! Where, oh where did we go wrong?

Monday, July 14, 2014

A message from Avery

Hi, my name's Avery.


If your name isn't Mommy, Daddy, or Davis, then I don't want you to hold me or take care of me. I mean it. And if you try, I will cry-scream. To understand what my cry-scream sounds like, imagine an angry mountain lion stuck in a very large blender, and it's a bit like that. I will do this on repeat for as long as necessary until my temporary caregiver surrenders or my parents come to rescue me, whichever comes first.

If you see me in my natural habitat, aka: under my parents' supervision, you might not believe any of this because I am so quiet and content. It's because I need them to like me so they will never leave me ever! But as soon as they start feeling gutsy and make the foolish decision to abandon me with a babysitter or take me to the church nursery, it's GAME ON.

I don't really feel sorry for them because, hello? Why else would you give birth to me if you didn't plan to keep me by right by your side forever and always?! But I do like them quite a bit, so today I'm going to throw them a bone and ask you to leave them any advice or encouragement you might have if you have ever had the fortune of being the parent to such a clingy loyal child as myself.

P.S. I know my mom already posted about this issue 3 months ago, but apparently she was naive enough to think it would get better on its own by now!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

A riddle

Question: what has 2 hooded heads, 4 eyes, entirely too much energy, and lots of cuteness?

Answer:




Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Cheese and crackers

At the end of this post, you may be asking yourself, "WHY does she have to post about the things her kid says so frequently?!" And to that I would say, "WHY does my kid have to say such funny things all the time?! Also, it's my blog and I do what I want." Now, let's get this show on the road.

When he got sick last Thursday, every time he finished a round of vomiting, he would announce with relief, "That was a close one!" This was more fitting on the occasions when he actually made it into the trash can, but more amusing on the occasions when he didn't and still made that announcement.

While we were at the airport, Wade said, "Geez!" in frustration as Avery was blowing raspberries while he was trying to feed her dinner. Davis followed it up by exclaiming, "CHEESE and crackers!" (Refer to this link for an explanation of the way he said it.) Then last night, in response to dropping a bite of his popsicle, he used the exact same tone of voice and said, "CHICKENpox!" Where did he learn this stuff?!?!

As we were driving home from "summer school" yesterday, there was a panhandler in the street next to our car. Davis asked me what that man was doing, and I said he was asking for money. He responded in a whiney voice, "I want money, too! I NEED money!" (Don't we all, kid?!)

He came up to me on Monday evening asking where his crayons were, and then explained, "I need to send God." (I asked for clarification and eventually figured out that he meant he needed to send a letter to God.) He went to the other room and then dictated in a very animated voice as he "wrote" the letter: "Dear God, I love you SO much. And I still love you. And Daddy is there for you, and Mommy, and Avery, and Grocky [his name for Rocky...tear], and Tucker is there for you, too. The end."

He calls his toothbrush a "brushteeth." And if the dentist ever corrects him, there'll be hell to pay.


Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Fighting the greener grass

I don't know about you, but pretty much as soon as I head to the airport at the end of a trip, the end-of-vacation blues set in. I get sad about the break from reality being over, and I also get sad that I have to leave a place that's different and exciting to return to a place that's familiar and boring in comparison. My unreasonable self gets convinced that life would be better and easier if only I lived in (insert place here) rather than Austin, Texas. Surely the grass is greener everywhere else, right?

But eventually my reasonable side has to jump in and stop the blues from turning into full-blown depression. This side reminds me that I live in a great city, that there's no place like home (as I mentioned in the last post), and that even if I did live in another city or state or country, life would not be any better or easier there - we would still have bills to pay and mouths to feed and problems to solve. So at some point I just have to remind myself to be happy with where I am, literally and figuratively.

That's why late on Sunday morning, after getting home from the airport around 10:30 the night before, we decided to put the list of post-vacation chores on hold and head to Hula Hut for lunch outside on the patio. I needed to remember Austin is a great city to live in, that fun doesn't only have to happen when you're on vacation, and that life at home isn't all humdrum and routine. (I also needed to have a margarita to recover from traveling with children.)


It left me feeling inspired to enjoy this city of ours a little more than we usually do, so hopefully I'll be able to follow through on that goal... stay tuned to find out.

Monday, July 07, 2014

Breckenridge "Vacation" 2014

I don't think I mentioned it here on the blog, but the majority of you are probably friends of mine on other social media outlets and therefore knew that we spent most of last week on "vacation" in Breckenridge, Colorado with the Joiners and my parents. (I think the use of quotation marks there is self-explanatory, but in case it's not, perhaps you have never traveled with small children?) Overall it was a great trip, but I think all of us adults could now use a few days off to recover from our time away! Allow me to semi-briefly recap the highs and lows of our getaway...

Day 1: not much to report here because this day was mostly spent flying to Denver and then driving to Breckenridge, which was not exactly an easy feat with 6 adults and 4 children ages 3 and under. We were happy to finally arrive around 5pm, eat a yummy dinner at Empire Burger, and then get settled at our house (which we loved!).



 Day 2: there was a morning walk to Main Street, lunch at Breckenridge Brewery & Pub with a friend of Amanda's, shopping, cookies from Mary's Mountain Cookies, a gondola ride, alpine sliding for the boys, and dinner at Mi Casa.



Day 3: this day was special. It started off just fine with another morning walk to Main Street and then a drive/short hike to Sapphire Point... but that's when the plans fell apart. Davis caught the stomach bug that we were all passing around and barfed all over the back of the rental car en route to lunch, so the rest of the day was spent taking care of him and attempting an (unsuccessful) outing to Carter Park. The Joiners kept us company while my parents went to Vail for the afternoon, and then we all went to bed hoping and praying the next day would be better. 




Day 4: thankfully our prayers were answered and everyone woke up on the 4th of July feeling fine! We started the day off with the parade on Main Street and brunch at The Blue Moose, followed by a drive up/down Boreas Pass, shopping on Main Street, a tour of Breckenridge Distillery for the boys, and lots of pictures of everyone in their festive attire. We finished Independence Day by grilling out on the fancy back patio before trying to catch a glimpse of the fireworks in the distance and then calling it a night.




Day 5: much like day 1, most of this day was spent traveling. We left Breckenridge after one last morning walk to Main Street and back, and then stopped for lunch at a Whole Foods in Denver before doing the super fun airport shuffle with all of the babies and luggage. Unfortunately day 5 also saw 3 more people catch the stomach bug, and while that isn't good news by itself, it is good that it happened at the very end of the trip rather than in the middle.


So there you have it! We were sad to leave the perfectly cool weather in Breckenridge to get back to reality in the Texas heat, but at they say, there's no place like home... especially when you are recovering from/dealing with a stomach bug.