They Live Among Us, Part 2

Still. No. Mice. I'm not going to lie. I wish we had caught one by now. It doesn't help that I was awake from 3:30-5:45 before I rolled out of bed this morning, and I heard commotion in the kitchen area. I was sure I would find that one of the traps had caught one. Oh well...we'll keep trying!

Jacob is obsessed with the mice. He keeps talking about the messy mouses and their stinky poop.

Last night the boys were role playing more of what they do at school. Mr. Alex comes once a week to sing songs and play instruments for the children. So Jacob got out his guitar, Andrew got his, and Jacob also gathered a bag full of toys. He sat down in the chair and said, "Now, do we make messes with the toys? Do we break the toys?" Of course, Brian and I answered yes to both questions. He's a little jokester, too, because he would just smile at us. Eventually Andrew sat down next to me and Brian and he would just clap his hands (with the beat!) as Jacob played songs.

That reminds me! So Andrew has been having time outs on the naughty stool since he moved into his big boy bed. He has done an extremely good job at sitting and not crying while he sits in time outs. Right now he only sits for one minute. Jacob, on the other hand, can easily turn a 3 minute time out into 45 minutes. Let me tell you, I cannot wait until he is bumped up to 4 minutes in April! Anyway, Andrew was in time out the other night, and I heard him start singing. He has such a low and rough little voice, but he would make his voice go high, too. It was so cute! The kid loves his music! He asks me almost daily to sing the itsy bitsy spider while we're sitting at the dinner table.

In other news, I have big dreams of making big changes in my life in 2011. I am not the most organized person in the world, but I am taking steps to become more organized (even if they are baby steps right now). I'm also trying to bring my lunch more days than I go out for lunch. That one hasn't gone so well, but I haven't been just terrible about it either. Anyway, at the beginning of the year I told myself that if I didn't bring my lunch that I'd eat something healthy. There is a Subway right around the corner from our office. I have been horrible about holding up my end of the deal where I eat something healthy if I go out....until today! And I must say, it wasn't bad!

Time to get busy at work. I'm squeezing in some blogging during the morning break and lunch breaks at work. I just need to get more pictures up here.

They Live Among Us

Good Day Bloggers! I have literally been in bed for the last 4 days because I decided to have my tubes tied. They knocked me out for the surgery, and I had 4 days off from kids and house duties. You can't beat it! I feel almost 100% normal, and surgery was on Friday.

In other news, I've begun to follow this website, It helps you develop a FLIGHT plan to avoid CHAOS (Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome). I'm still working on the first two steps: Shine Your Sink every night and Dress Down to your Shoes in the morning before you do ANYTHING else. It's fun and I recommend it. Sarah, my favorite sister, introduced me to the Fly Lady.

And lastly, what welcomes you back to reality better than a small crisis at home?!?! That's right, after having 4 days off (did I mention I was completely off mom and wife duty for 4 days?!?!), I had to completely clean out our pantry last night. We. Have. F*. Mice. YUCK! I guess it all started about 2 weeks ago when I heard some noises in the kitchen. I woke Brian early Saturday morning to investigate. At first he said it was a critter, and then he came back and said he thought it was the ice maker. phew! Then last week, about 2 days before surgery, he came home from work and shared that he was pretty sure it was a critter that we had heard the previous weekend. He thought he had seen a small black mouse running in the garage. great. Okay...we'll get some traps. Oh yeah, that surgery thing popped up, and mouse traps were the last things on our minds. So I was putting up a few things in the kitchen late yesterday afternoon, and I opened the pantry. On the bottom shelf, I noticed some black specks. Oh no. It can't be. Then I moved the flour that was beside the black specks (which was inside a freezer bag), and there was a hole chewed in the freezer bag and flour bag. Needless to say, flour was spread all over the shelf. And the evidence suggests we are housing more than one mouse.

So last night we set out some traps. Well, Andrew had accidentally made a mess on the floor with his dinner. It was Grandma Rose's lasagna. He really doesn't like to have a mess on his hands, so once he dropped his fork, he was done. Well, he's almost 2, so he's old enough to clean up his mess (with a small amount of help). Since it was messy, sticky lasagna, he absolutely refused. For like over 2 hours REFUSED! So Brian told him he would have to clean it up this morning before breakfast. We had a genius idea! Why don't we put a mouse trap in the middle of the lasagna mess?!?! Then we would be sure to catch a mouse, right? We could not have been more wrong. Apparently lasagna is much more tasty than peanut butter. So Andrew escaped from having to clean up his mess, and our little mouse friends had a nice little meal last night. You can find a positive in everything, right?!!?

Weekend Wrap Up

Our weekend was more eventful than usual, and it was great! On Saturday I went to the grocery store with Andrew, and Brian and Jacob went to Home Depot. I bought all of the goodies to make more deceptively delicious meals. This week's menu consists of Chicken Parmesan (with spinach and carrots), Honey Mustard Chicken (sweet potatoes), Lo Mein (sweet potatoes), and later in the week I'll make Orange Chicken (I think this also has sweet potatoes). The recipes are really easy to make, and you don't need to go out and buy a lot of weird ingredients that you'll never use again. I love it! Best Christmas gift by far! At Home Depot, Brian picked out some paint samples for our room (YAY! Painting is on my list for 2011) and some light fixtures for the house. You know, fixtures that we actually like. :)

So after I returned home, I made Andrew some lunch (standard chicken kids live on them over the weekend). Then I started a load of laundry. After I started the laundry I started gathering trash. On my way to put a bag in the garage, I thought I heard some noise as I was walking through the utility room. What?!?! That sounded like crackling under my feet. Why would there be cr...ack....ling.....OMG!!! WATER EVERYWHERE!!! Sure enough, here comes Andrew running after me. He runs into the utility room (of course he was wearing pants that were too long for his short little legs), and he ran right back out when I told him to get out. Then he looked up at me and kind of fussed, "Feet! Feet!" So I turned off the washer, took his pants off, and locked him out of the kitchen. Then I called Brian to tell him that they need to come into the house through the front door because our pipes were frozen. Clean up begins, and I'm mad because it is above 40 degrees, so there is no reason our pipes should be frozen. In about 15-20 minutes, Brian and Jacob get home. Brian kind of creeps around the corner of the kitchen island, and he says, "I think I know what happened." He goes on to explain that he thought I might do laundry while the pipes were actually frozen earlier in the week. So he took out the drain tube to put salt into the pipe and forgot to put the tube back in the drain hole. The real news is that I did not fly off the handle when he told me. He helped me clean up the mess, and we were fine! Then he called his mom so that we could have a date night (it's been FOREVER!).

We went out with Cassie and Brian Saturday night. I cooked all day Sunday. We also managed to watch 2 movies. Great weekend!

Facebook Friends

I am friends with the boys' teachers on Facebook. Brian and I are some of the younger parents at the school, and the teachers are only a few years younger than us. Plus, let's face it, they are awesome people! Brian didn't like it so much when I friended the teachers. Had I not friended them, I would've missed out on little nuggets like this:

"Andrew got to stay home with Mommy today because he threw up on her bed."

"You throw up in the toilet or on Daddy." (he shared this with his friends one day)

And this from Christmas: "Jacob is so excited about Christmas that EVERYTHING we do in class has to somehow relate to Santa and the North Pole. We were watching a Bookflix that had clouds in it and Jacob says, 'It's a snow slide in the North Pole!' One of the other boys, of course, corrected him and he just said, 'Maybe. But it's almost Christmas so it's NOT clouds. It's SNOW in the NORTH POLE for SANTA.' He was VERY serious."

In other news, it is friggin' cold here. I am not a fan! Last week I rocked on my resolutions, and this week I'm back to just living in chaos. I'd like to blame the weather because it's really got me in a weird and very unpleasant mood. I'm not sleeping well; I don't want to get up in the morning (which means I drag in a few minutes late....every day for work); and I'm completely unmotivated to do much around the house. I've planned a little girl time this weekend with my friend, Cassie, so hopefully that will pull me out of the funk. Oh yeah...and if Andrew would just get well and stay that way, it'd help. :)

Here are a couple of pictures of the boys at ICE at the Gaylord. (okay...Andrew at ICE. Blogger is messing up and won't let me add another picture)

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to everyone! We spent New Year's Eve this year with the boys. It was so fun! Brian and I went out before we picked them up from school to get hats, noise makers, and some yummy snacks for our celebration. Andrew stayed up until 10:30, and Jacob stayed up until 11:00. And then they both slept in until 8 I think.

I thought the new year was going to bring a new blog, but is a royal pain to set that up. So I've decided to stick with blogger. (Brian thinks I should switch to wordpress)

I've made some crazy resolutions for the new year. Basically it can all be wrapped up with saying that I would like to be more organized. I make this resolution every year, but this year I've actually made some changes in the way I approach things instead of just saying "I'd like to be more organized." Last week was great! Things flowed more smoothly at work and home. The tough part will be to keep it all up.

Brian bought the second edition of Deceptively Delicious for me for Christmas. I think it is by far the best gift I received! What you do is puree vegetables, freeze them in 1/4 and 1/2 Cup portions, and then use them to cook. The recipes are so simple, and every one has been a hit at the house!

Today I am home with Andrew for the first illness of the year. That didn't take long! His tummy was weird all weekend, and we could tell he didn't feel well. Then I wasn't feeling well yesterday or this morning, so I stayed home with him. We had great timing if you ask me. It snowed here yesterday (not even enough at our house for the boys to play in it), and then freezing drizzle hit this morning right before rush hour. So all of the roads have been in bad shape. I think we'll both be back to a normal schedule tomorrow!

Lastly, I am working on my Christmas blog. I have TONS of pictures. It was the best!

Here's to a happy new year for all and a full year of blogging for me!

Christmas Activities

This was by far the most fun Christmas season I believe I've ever had! I tried to do as many Christmas activities as possible with the boys (mainly for Jacob). So here's the run down of the activities in the last 30 days.

1. Put up the Christmas decorations. They boys LOVED putting the "balls" on the tree.
2. The Trains at Northpark. We started this tradition last year with my parents. My boys love trains, and so this is a must-see every year!
3. ICE at The Gaylord. I really wanted to see this exhibit this year because of the Charlie Brown theme. They bring in literally tons of ice each year and sculpt scenes based on the theme. It is truly amazing! One minor detail that I forgot was that Andrew HATES to be cold. oops! So he did not take it very well. That meant that I didn't get to see much either. I scurried to get him out of there, but it still took forever because of all of the people. Jacob liked it a lot, so he and Brian had a good time!
4. Christmas Lights. I love looking at Christmas lights each year, and Jacob took an interest this year. So I took them to one of the popular neighborhoods to look at the lights. It only took an hour of waiting in line (after the 30 minute car ride from Grandmother's house), and we made it thru half of the neighborhood. I tried so hard to make it thru the whole thing. I fed them healthy crackers, graham crackers, and Jacob even scored some chocolate during the trip. We jammed to their favorite songs from The Polar Express and my favorites from the Glee Christmas Album (yep...I'm a Gleek). It was fun!
5. Santa. We made it to see Santa! We went with Matthew and Grant, too! The Santa picture of my boys includes the whole family. They were both scared. Then we wanted a picture of all 4 grandsons for my parents. I'm in the picture, too, but I'm mostly hidden. You can see that my boys' shirts are pulled tight to keep them from running away.
6. Decorate Cookies with Santa. I posted about this earlier. We had fun watching the boys freak out around Santa. There weren't any meltdowns, but you could see their discomfort on their little faces. Kinda funny!
7. Elf on the Shelf! It was our first year to have an Elf on the Shelf thanks to Grandmother! Our elf's name is Elfie.
8. Advent Calendar. Again, thanks to Grandmother, we had an Advent Calendar. The boys LOVED moving a small Santa toy from day to day each morning. This was a wonderful thing to have in our house for Christmas.
9. Decorating cookies for Santa. Jacob and I spent some time on Christmas Eve to decorate cookies for Santa. So fun! I can't wait until next year when Andrew will be old enough to participate.
10. The Night Before Christmas. We read this every year. I love this tradition!