Saturday, November 15, 2008

a day to remember

I'm only a week late in posting pictures from our birthday bash last weekend...With Ella turning 5 and Chloe turning 1 within 2 days of each other, we decided to combine their parties while neither one of them care.

It was your typical late fall/early winter day, with it being partly cloudy and a bit chilly. But the weather was perfect for our "fall-themed" festivities, all planned for the great outdoors.

The hayride was everyone's favorite part of the afternoon. We live in the city, but we're blessed with a big backyard that backs up to a private city easement. We took advantage of this by pulling the kids in a hay-filled trailer behind my husband's John Deere lawn mower all around the back easement.

The kids all took turns piling in the tractor for their rides.

This birthday girl loved the hayride more than anything...
...while this little birthday girl despised it more than anything.
But fast forward 20 minutes and she was as happy as a clam chowing down on her pumpkin cupcake.*
It was a great afternoon, but a week later, I think I'm still recovering from it. Let's see...Only about 15 more years of throwing these parties!

* My wonderful and very talented friend, Amy, made and decorated these cupcakes for the party. There is no way I'm capable of doing something so creative! Thanks, Amy!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

there's a reason... girls and I don't do bangs. And here it is:

This was Britten at 1 1/2 years old. I remember the precise moment I got the itch to cut her bangs. At the time I thought she looked positively adorable, but now I understand why my husband got so upset when he walked through the door from work that day.

It looked much cuter styled with piggies...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

extreme measures

Ella's response to Chloe's bout of constipation today:

"Mommy, should I press the fire alarm on the security system so the fireman can help Chloe?"

Monday, November 10, 2008

and this is precisely why...

...I rarely answer my phone during the day.

Unless my kids are napping or completely preoccupied, I refuse to answer my phone...especially if it's an unknown number. I. I've learned that it only creates a situation where a disaster is imminent. What might have been a controlled environment instantly turns to chaos.

Take the above disaster, for instance. At 11:00am my phone rings. It's an unknown number. Chloe's napping and the older two are snuggled together on the brown chair eating a snack and watching a favorite cartoon. I think I'm in the clear for answering the phone, as long as I make it quick, so I do the unthinkable: I answer my phone while my girls are in the next room.

Within seconds from answering, I realized I should've let it go to voicemail. A mother from my MOPS group was calling and really needed to talk and needed my full on attention. I decided to take my call into the other room, to have a little more privacy.

40 minutes later...I'm finally off the phone. Mentally fried and completely overwhelmed by the fact that I have 20 minutes to make lunch, get Ella dressed and ready for school, do her hair pretty for school pictures, and get my own self ready for a lunch meeting I had that day, I walked into the living room to find this...

Our entire game cupboard was emptied and every single game was strewn about my living room floor, millions of different pieces had been mixed together. All in one big pile.

I seriously didn't know what to do. What I wanted to do was walk back to my bedroom, crawl under the covers, curl myself into the fetal position and fall into a deep, dreamless sleep. Instead, I just stood there. Without words, without emotion. I was completely at a void of what to do. I was blank.

And then I did something you're never supposed to do in front of your children when they do something naughty --- I started laughing. Laughing uncontrollably. My girls, who had been sheepishly standing there amongst the mess, eyes darting all over the room, instantly looked at me as though some strange alien creature had inhabited my body. Relief flooded their little faces as they, too, started to laugh. Once I composed myself I made it very clear that "even though Mommy was laughing, this situation is NOT funny. There were going to be major consequences for not behaving while Mommy was on the phone."

My husband and I spent nearly 2 hours organizing the pieces and putting the games back together. We then had the girls help us pack all of the games into 3 large garbage bags. We told them we were putting their games into a 7-day time-out in the garage, and if this...

...ever happened again, everything would be donated to children who cared about their toys, listened to their parents, and of course, let their Mommy's talk on the phone.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

i'm all grown up now

Apparently turning 5 years old means Ella thinks she's old enough to take care of herself.

Being the early riser she is, there are mornings she wakes up long before anyone else. On these particular mornings, she'll come into our room to let us know she's awake, but then she'll proceed to go into the living room and plop herself down in our big brown chair. She'll grab the remote, turn the TV to Channel 5-3, and from there, sit and watch a couple of her favorite Disney cartoons until the rest of us roll out of bed.

There are times she'll wake me up because she's hungry. I'll quickly make her some toast, pour her some cereal or scramble her an egg, but I'll almost always head back to bed for a few more minutes of zzz's.

Today Ella decided she didn't need my help anymore. Since turning 5 a couple of days ago, Ella is convinced she is independent enough to survive on her own sheer will. Most days, that's probably true.

My husband was second to rise this morning. As most mornings, he goes into the living room to find Ella in her chair eating cereal. But unlike most mornings, she was devouring her cereal from a large tupperware container. Odd, he thought.

He walks into the kitchen to find a pot of coffee brewing. Grounds are strewn about and water is spilled on the countertops. He turns around to see Ella standing behind him, a big smile on her face.

"I made coffee, Daddy. All by myself! And I got my own cereal, too! I didn't even ask Mommy!"

Andy looks around the kitchen...The cereal had been put back in the pantry with no crumbs to be found on the counter. The milk was put back in its' place in the fridge, the cap tightly screwed back on. And believe it or not, the coffee tasted great.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

it's a miracle!

UPDATE: Apparently the sleeping through the whole night thing was a fluke. Last night she was up to her old antics of getting me up 2 times. A lot of nights it's still 3 times, so maybe I should be thankful for this?

ORIGINAL POST: Guess who slept through the night last night?!?!

It only took a year, give or take 2 days, for crying out loud! But believe you me, I am NOT holding my breath that this will be the new trend. I'm thinking it's a fluke, but only time will tell.

five years

Ella-bella, you are 5 years old today! Look at you, growing up so quickly and turning into such a beautiful little girl! Just today I was told by another mom at preschool that her son had a MAJOR crush on you. As she was tucking him into bed the other night he said, "I like Ella. I don't hafta love her, I don't hafta kiss her. I just like her. " You'd never in a million years allow him to kiss you, anyway. You despise getting kisses, particularly yucky, wet kisses!! You only let me and Daddy kiss you, but not before we've begged you and wiped our lips off first! You are very particular about certain things. In fact, you're very particular about a lot of things, but I think that goes along with being the oldest sibling.

I love that picture of you, Ella. You and Daddy. Two peas in the pod. You have been a Daddy's girl from day one, always preferring him to anyone else. I think it's because you understand each other so well. You take after your Daddy in almost every single way. You're very tall and will outgrow me before your 10. You're smart, coordinated, creative, senstive, intensely stubborn, incredibly musical, process things internally, you have a goofy sense of humor and a smile that could charm a rock. The only quality you've inherited from your mother is that you LOVE having your feet tickled.

I can't believe it's been 5 years already. Before I know it you'll be dating boys (gulp!), driving a car, graduating from high school...I'm not sure I should think about this right now. I already have tears in my eyes.

I love you, sweetie, and I hope you have a fantastic birthday!

Monday, November 3, 2008

birthday girls

Two/thirds of our girls are turning a year older this week.

Our baby is turning ONE in four days. I'm amazed by how quickly this past year has gone. It's almost a blur...Or, maybe that's just sleep deprivation. I can never tell anymore. I can vividly remember what it felt like being pregnant with her, so much so, that at times I can almost feel her kicking. But in other ways it feels like it's been much longer than a year. We can't remember life without this little girl or what it was like having only two children. Chloe, you complete me us.
Oh, Ella. Our little dare devil diva. Remember this? Ella turns 5 on November 5th - her golden birthday. Ella is an amazing little girl with talent and intuition that blows my mind. But anyone who knows our Ella knows that with her sweet and very sensitive nature comes an intensity and strong will that continually challenges us in our parenting. But I'm so thankful for her and the dynamics she brings to our home and our family.

I can only thank God for all he has given us over the past 5 years. It's been an amazing journey, and I'm sure this week of birthday parties and craziness will be no exception!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

a revelation

Britten: "Mommy, Chloe always calls you "Ma-ma," doesn't she?"

Me: "Yes, honey. She does."

Britten: "Who am I, Mommy?"

Me: "Well, your Britty, aren't you?"

Britten: "No, I'm the competition."

I don't even think Britten understands the meaning of that word. She only hears it in the context of when her and Ella are trying to beat each other at something and we're having to explain to them that not everything in life has to be a COMPETITION!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

some halloween memories

Halloween 2008

Ella - Princess
Britten - Princess
Chloe - Frog

Let's check out last year...

Halloween 2007

Ella & Britten - Oh, the same princesses as last year!
Chloe - Mommy's Tummy (a week from entering the world!)

Halloween 2006

Ella - You're kidding...she's the same princess! Poor girl.
Britten - Wow. That frog costume looks a little familiar...Oh yes, it's the same costume Chloe wore this year!
Chloe - a twinkle in the good Lord's eye

In all reality, I love the fact that we've been able to reuse our costumes every year! Our girls always WANT to be princesses, so we've really lucked out that their costumes continue to fit them...Hmmm...I wonder what they'll be next year? I guess you'll have to stay tuned!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

once upon a time...

There was a perfect little family.
The happily married couple were very much in love. They spent each day as though it were there last, never taking each other for granted and enjoying every minute together. They never fought, they were never angry with each other, never impatient or rude and loved each other unconditionally. They were always happy.
They had three beautiful little girls who all adored each other and got along swimmingly. They were very well-mannered and always on their best behavior. They too loved each other unconditionally and never, ever raised their voices or used aggressive behavior when upset. They shared with each other, played well together, and always listened to their Mommy and Daddy. They sat at the table through every meal, never complaining or refusing to eat, and they never, ever made a mess with their food.
There was no drama, no temper tantrums, and absolutely no screaming. Everyone always used their "inside voices" in this happy, little family.
They always had fun and got along so well!
It must have had something to do with ALL of the good sleep they got...
...or the nutritious food they ate...
Or maybe it was just because they loved each other so much. And love is always perfect.

Or not.

Friday, October 24, 2008

support me please

I know I've mentioned on at least one occasion that I am coordinating the MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) ministry at my church this year. This is a new ministry for my church, and though I've personally been involved in MOPS at another church for last 4 years, this is my very first year in leadership. In fact, aside from being on Student Council back in the days, this is my first experience with leading anything.

With it being a new ministry, the gals and I ("the gals" being the fabulous women who serve on leadership with me) are working tirelessly to build a budget for our group. We hosted a garage sale in August, and even with it raining, it was a major success. So now with one fundraiser under our belts, we're on to the next one! So, this is where YOUR support comes in, and I promise it won't require much time, energy or even much money.

This Sunday on October 26th from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m, we will be hosting a fundraiser at Cici's Pizza in Eagan. The address is 1292 Town Centre Dr. It's quite simple, actually. All you need to do is show up, eat a lot of food for really cheap (I think their buffet is something like $5.99/person) and drop your receipt into a bucket labeled for our MOPS group. Ci Ci's will then donate 15% of the all the proceeds to our group. And voila! We made a little extra money for a really good cause.

So if you live in that general area and are looking for something FUN to do with the family on Sunday afternoon, PLEASE show up! You don't even have to KNOW me to do this...How cool is that?!

Monday, October 20, 2008

a helping hand hold

Ella absolutely adores Chloe, there's no doubt about it. Unlike her relationship with her other sister,* her relationship with Chloe is full of kindness, generousity and affection. She thinks the world of Chloe and is always doing her best to keep her involved in what's going on around her.

For example, should Chloe be left alone in another room for even a second, Ella runs to her rescue and does this to solve the problem...
You might not be able to tell by the picture, but Chloe's feet are several inches off of the floor because Ella is carrying her. As you can tell by Chloe's expression, this is not a new thing for her, and in fact, she's quite happy being carried around the house by her big sister.

The first few times Ella tried this, Chloe screamed and wiggled so much Ella was forced to drop gently put her on the floor. But like a cat gets used to being swung around in a blanket (though this is NOT advised, my little brother did this to our cat all the time while we were growing up, and in the end, my brother was the cat's favorite person in the whole wide world), Chloe has gotten used to this. Ella will even sit down on the rocking chair with Chloe like this and the two of them will sit there rocking for several minutes at a time. It is the sweetest thing to witness, watching Chloe giggle as Ella rocks and talks to her.

* While Britten and Ella love each other dearly and are best buddies, they have a love/I'm-going-to-beat-you-to-a-bloody-pulp-if-you-look-at-me-wrong relationship.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

our new not-so little toy

I am so excited about the new toy my husband brought home today! It was a gift. A very generous gift from very wonderful friends. And did I mention I was excited?

They gave us a brand new piano! Well, it's not brand new exactly. In fact, it's really, really old. It's an antique piano, and a cute little thing at that, and it originally belonged and was played by the mother of my very generous friend. But it's brand new to us and we are so excited to be owners of a piano! We've been wanting one for ages but couldn't afford to buy one, let alone move one. Hiring movers to transport a piano costs an arm and a leg and wasn't in the cards for us.

Good thing for me I'm married to a strong, manly-man. Oh, and it helped my manly-man husband that our very generous friend was once a body builder and he offered to help us move it.
My husband is also resourceful and had the clever idea of pulling the piano on the trailer behind his John Deere tractor to our backyard so they could bring the piano into our walkout basement. It was quite hilarious to watch, but a seamless process, and my piano was ready for playing within minutes of arrival!

I have such high hopes for this piano! Now I just need to get my girls in lessons so they can start serenading me throughout my day!

fall fun

Britten is attempting to pick out a pumpkin. She settled with one that fit in the palm of her hands.
Our family loves everything about fall. The beautiful weather, with just enough chill in the air to justify wearing a sweater and jeans, the ever-changing colors, and best of all, the crunchy leaves that have fallen from the trees.
Britten's enjoying a sucker at the pumpkin patch. Fortunately, we didn't have a repeat of this.
I honestly think this is the first family picture we've had taken since Chloe was born. It only took us a year.
Me and my girls. My husband took about 12 pictures of this pose and there were none in which the girls were actually looking at the camera.
By the end of the afternoon, Britten had enough of the camera and was begging, through her tears, for her Daddy to put it away.
Soon we will have to say goodbye to this beautiful fall weather. But until then, we'll cherish our time having fun in leaves!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

lemme explain

In recent days, I've had a few close friends ask me about my blogging habits. More specifically, they were wondering why and giving me a hard time (jokingly, of course) that I haven't been blogging much over the last few months. I was a little surprised anyone noticed, or even cared really, that I wasn't posting on a regular basis. I mostly keep it light on my blog, writing about the things my girls do that I find funny, or documenting the moments I feel are memorable. To think anyone else enjoys reading my ramblings and claim to miss reading them regularly is actually quite hilarious to me.

It was because of this I decided to explain myself to my few avid reader and friends, who open my blog daily, patiently awaiting another post.

To say I've been busy this summer is an understatement. Between training for my 1/2 marathon, getting MOPS off the ground at my church, working part time (as a Realtor), traveling almost every weekend, and trying to manage being a Mom and Wife, I've had little to no down time. And with the little down time I have had, I've had NO energy to sit at my computer and write. Writing requires you to think, or at least it requires ME to think. And because I'm a slow processor, I'm not someone who can pound out an interesting post in a matter of a few minutes. It takes me a while and exerts a lot of brain power. Brain power I lack when I still have yet to get a full night of sleep (this is a result of a blue-eyed baby who still wakes up 2-4 times a night).

But even with a busy schedule, I've still found time to blog in the past, so my "busyness" is a lame excuse and a cover-up to the real reason I've been MIA.

It all has to do with the power of addiction. Addiction runs in my family, but I'd be surprised to hear of a family that doesn't struggle with addiction in one form or another. Fortunately, I've been able to rise above and make the right choices in my life to keep me out of any major trouble. My entire family is living proof that by God's grace alone, you can overcome addiction and not let it control your life.

But even with choosing the right path, so to speak, I still find that I have the tendencies to be easily consumed by certain things and find it next to impossible to break particular habits. If you see where I'm going with this, you won't be surprised to hear me admit the following:

Hi. My name is Amanda and I'm a blogging addict.

Once I started blogging last winter, I couldn't stop. Whether it was writing my own posts or reading and commenting on other blogs, I was wasting away hours at my computer every day. My thoughts were consumed by topics I wanted to blog about and I found myself drawn to the computer, opening up my favorite blogs on an almost hourly basis.

Before my blogging days, I'd spend a maximum of one hour at my computer daily, only using it to check my email and possibly the weather. I'm a busy body, a trait I inherited from my mother, and just the idea of sitting for more than 10 minutes at a time makes me bored. Because of this, I had no clue I'd enjoy blogging so much and that is would control me in the way it did.

Yes, there are worse things I could be addicted to. Way worse. But when blogging started taking precedence over my family and my commitments as a wife and a mother, I realized I had a problem. I realized I needed to make a change. I've also been dealing with a lot over the last few months, emotionally and spiritually, and knew I had to make certain sacrifices in order to not succumb to the stress and pressure weighing on my shoulders.

When my children are snuggled safely in their beds at night, I will push the urge aside to run to my computer and spend the rest of my waking hours blogging. I need to spend what little downtime I have doing the things that are necessary to keep me sane and happy. Those include devotions with my Lord and Savior, because without HIM, I would be utterly lost. Running, cleaning my house, doing the laundry, grocery shopping, doing bills and responding to necessary emails are just a few of the other things that top my list of priorities.

But with all that said, I still absolutely love my blog and totally enjoy reading other blogs. I've just learned to balance things a bit better, and I've found that my family and I are better of this way. I have a feeling you'll be hearing more from me in days to come, though, because a couple weeks ago I sent Ella off to her second year of preschool and I now have three afternoons a week where I'm left with 2 hours of down time.

Sigh. Down time. It's been a long time coming!

simon ella says

Ella to Britten:

"Hey, Britty, repeat after me: My....Mom...Is...Cool."

I heard Ella say this to Britten from another room, and it totally melted my heart.


Ella to Britten:

"Hey, Britty, can I have some of your pretzel's?"

Britten shakes her head No.

"Britty, can I please?"

Answer still No.

"Britten, it makes Jesus very sad when you don't share. So I'm just going to take one from you."

Hmmm...Not sure it works that way.


Andy, trying to be conspicuous, asks me the following question last night...

"Hey, do you think I should take our eldest two daughters to the M-A-L-L?" Spelling it out so as not to give Ella and Britten false hope.

Ella, who overheard his question, "I'll sound it out. Mmm...Aaaa...Llllll. MALL." Runs off yelling, "Britty, we're going to the MALL with Daddy!!!"

Gone are the days for spelling out words so our girls won't understand us!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

three years

Three years ago today, we welcomed our middle daughter, Britten Lou, into our lives.
Weighing just 6 lbs. 13 oz., she was a peanut. The little thing had no fat on her body, including cheeks (and I'm not referring to her face), but the girl had LUNGS and wouldn't stop crying for the first two hours of her life! But apparently that was all she had, because once she stopped crying, she was the happiest baby in the world and rarely, and I mean rarely, did she ever cry again as an infant.

Today we celebrated her birthday by taking her out to dinner to her restaurant of choice. Surprise, surprise, she chose to sit by her Daddy.

Apparently we chose the perfect night to go out to eat because they had conveniently hired a guy to walk around making balloon creatures for kids. The girls were enthralled!

Britten's fish was the same size as her!
Ella chose a monkey hanging on a palm tree. It even had its own coconuts!
Chloe desperately wanted a balloon, but eight sharp teeth and a habit to bite made for a dangerous combination. She settled for her bottle of water.
We ended our night enjoying cake at home that Ella and I made during naps today. Someone forgot to pick up candles, so I improvised a little.
Happy Birthday, Britty Louskie! Your sweet, thoughtful nature and goofy personality brings joy and laughter to our family! You are an amazing little girl and we love you to bits and pieces! You told me the other day, "Mommy, I don't wanna be 3." Believe me, sweetie, if I had it my way, you'd stay 2 forever!

starting early

For whatever reason, maybe as a symbol for turning 3 today, Britten has a huge whitehead pimple on her cheek.

Britten, this morning, asks her Daddy, "What's this, Daddy?"

Daddy: "Well, it's a zit."

Britten's response: "Hmmm....A zit."

Daddy: "Britten, can you say "puberty?"

Britten: "Pu."

Daddy: "No, say "puberty."

Britten: "Pu."

Daddy: "No. Pu-ber-ty."

Britten: "Pew, Britty."

Saturday, September 6, 2008

mission impossible accomplished

WE DID IT!!!! Finishing the race (still running) in just over 2 hours (2:02 or so, though I won't know exact numbers until they update everything online), it was an awesome run and even better experiece. The weather was perfect and the view was beautiful, with most of the run taking us around a lake. My wonderful friend from childhood, Heather, joined me in the race and we had such a great time running together. It makes such a difference to have a running partner and I hope to never run alone again. Hmmm...maybe my hubby will take up a new hobby in running?
The medals worn around our neck are proof that we successfully finished. Everyone got a medal, so unfortunately that doesn't mean we placed in the top 10, but at least we felt and looked like winners!

Coming around the last bend in the final 1/4 mile stretch, I was greeted by this sweet little face:

Seeing Chloe and my mom standing on the sidelines, cheering me on, was so awesome! It gave me the little burst of adreneline I needed to push myself harder through the finish lines. I'm very happy with my time, though I had no expectations set, but even happier I finished. And I finished feeling great. No blisters or toenails lost to speak of. Sorry, that's gross.

One thing's for sure: I am absolutely and totally addicted to running marathons. I can't wait for my next race!

my little clowns

Friday, September 5, 2008

the time has come

Feeling a combination of relief, excitement and sadness, and with my nerves a bit frayed, I leave today and head north to run my 1/2 marathon. I know in a lot of people's minds, running 13.1 miles is not that big of deal. People do it and a whole lot more all of the time. I know it's not that big of deal. It's really not.

But then again, it is. I set this goal for myself in May, starting my training the first week of June. Juggling training among my already busy life was hard, but because I spread my training over three months, I found this gradual process very manageable. And because I've never done anything so structured or intense, I was surprised by how well my body adjusted to the increased mileage. Apparently training works! Who knew?!?

I'm very happy I did this. Proud of myself, in fact. I have set no time goal for myself, nor do I care in the least bit if I finish the race in last place. My only goal is that I finish, and that I finish running. I'm not a natural competitor and tend to shy away from situations where I feel pressured. But the idea of running with hundreds of other competitors is thrilling and I have a feeling will become addictive. I've had people tell me that once I start marathons I'll never stop. I think by this time tomorrow, I'll understand why.

Wish me luck. Or better yet, say a prayer for me. Goodness knows I'll need them! For as excited as I am about tomorrow, I am nervous and feeling doubtful that I'll finish. I don't know why I feel this way, considering I've already ran 13 miles and finished will little problems, but I do. Having confidence in myself, and my abilities, is something I've always struggled with my entire life, and in some ways, I feel God has sent me on this particular mission to show me that "with HIM, all things are possible."

As my mom always taught me, WORDS ARE A POWERFUL WEAPON. So I will only speak positively. I CAN do this, I WILL finish the race...still running. With HIM, ALL things are possible and that's a very comforting thought!

I AM a (1/2) Marathon Mommy, hear me roar! :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

sparkly shoes

The mission was simple. The goal obtainable. Ella needed a new pair of shoes. She starts preschool (3-days a week) next Monday and I'm not about to send her back wearing the same old Crocs she wore last year, now completely worn through in the toes.

First mistake. We took the entire family to the shoe store last night, thinking we could make it a fun, family outing. I naively thought that my girls were old enough to appreciate and enjoy their first experience with buying a new pair of shoes for the new school year! This was always a highlight for me. I'll never forget my first experience of my mom buying me a new pair of shoes:

I was 6 years old and heading into first grade. I had my sight set on a pair of Punky Brewster high-tops.* They were the coolest things I ever laid eyes on. From what I recall, though my memory may be a bit fuzzy, was that they were purple and blue, had multi-colored shoe laces, and they sparkled from top to bottom. That, of course, was my favorite feature. I loved those shoes and remember being so excited to wear them at my first day of school, proudly admiring them as I sat in my desk. And so began my obsession with shoes.

Apparently, the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree.

The second we walked into the shoe store, Ella instantly spotted her new loves:

A pair of pink, sparkly jelly sandals.

She was smitten. She grabbed a pair for herself, Britten and even Chloe. Surprisingly, grabbing the right size for all three of them. Had summer just started, I might have considered buying them for Ella. But with fall just around the corner, and Ella's feet growing at least 1-2 sizes a year, I wasn't about to buy a pair of (very expensive) jelly sandals that would only be worn for a handful of weeks (days, even!) before going into storage! It wasn't an option. But try explaining that to a very determined 4 year old who has her heart set on a pair of sparkly jelly sandals.

And so it began. It being a full blown, dramatically intense, wailing at the top of her lungs, meltdown. Instead of throwing herself on the floor, like she had done on many occasions in years past, she decided to run around the store, all the while screaming that "she wanted her sparkly shoes!"

My husband, who was trying to juggle a fussy baby and toddler (or is Britten considered a preschooler?) who claimed to have a "tummy ache" and needed to "go potty really bad,"
tried his best to reel in our screaming preschooler. To no avail.

All the while, I'm dealing with a very sweet, but very new, employee of the shoe store, trying to track down the right size and color of the shoes we did decide on for Ella. What was supposed to be a quick, fun and exciting trip to the shoe store, ended up lasting a treacherous 45 minutes. In the end, the most frustrating thing about the entire trip was that we left empty-handed, with no shoes purchased.

For whatever reason, the store clerk and her manager, probably distracted by my whiny, very misbehaved children, weren't of much help. They couldn't find the right sizes or colors and because their computer system wasn't "working properly," they weren't able to special order the shoes for a free home delivery.


My husband and I left the store completely and utterly drained. Not of money, just energy. Both grumbling under our breath, we vowed to never, ever do that again. Yeah right. We always say that.

To give my girls some credit, it was nearing their bedtime and I think we were partially to blame by expecting them to "behave" while we tried to find shoes for Ella. It's hard to get mad at them in situations like that, when in all reality, we knew better. We really did.

*I Googled "Punky Brewster high tops" to see if I could share a photo of the coolest shoes ever to be manufactured, but I was disappointed and a little surprised by the fact that I couldn't find even one picture.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

who ever said that getting the right picture was hard?

"Britten and Ella, hug Choe and smile! Chloe, look at the camera!"
"Chloe, quit crying. Here's a smile!"
"Okay, a stick will do. Now Chloe's happy. Britten, quick! Look at the camera and SMILE and Ella, open your eyes!"
"Ugh. Chloe, sweetie, open your eyes!"
"This obviously isn't working so let's try something else..."
"Hmmm...Let's see..."
"Nope. It's pointless."
All she needed was a little cuddle time with Mommy (Oh, and she wanted to eat, and she wanted out of her dress. She takes after her mom like that. She's not fond of dresses) before she finally decided to give us one of these:
In the end, we ended up with ONE picture, none in which the three girls are actually looking at the camera, but it still turned out cute. My husband is doing final touches to it and I'll post it later.