Virtuoso

Happy Thursday!

Last night, Biggest had his Spring Orchestra concert. He was really nervous the night before, which in turn made this Mama Bear really nervous, but he did GREAT!

If you haven’t noticed, there aren’t many pictures of Biggest on this blog. He HATES getting his picture taken. I’d like to say that I respect his wishes and don’t take his picture, but the reality is that I try to take his picture anyway and he usually hides. Each time he spotted my phone last night, he ducked behind another kid/piano/sheet music. It was equal parts annoying/impressive/hilarious. Here’s the only photo I managed of the elusive violinist. I’m so proud of him!

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It’s been rainy and cold this week, which has been perfect for cozy nights on the sofa with kids and cat and cross stitch. Most evenings, I can only manage a half hour at most before someone needs a drink or a fight breaks out over couch space or it’s bedtime, but I’ll take it!

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How’s your stitching coming along?

Wishes

Hi Blog.

On Sunday, I celebrated my 44th birthday. Sometimes it is hard for me to believe that I am 44 years old. Inside, I feel so immature, all of… 12? 14 maybe? 36 on a good day? Age is such a funny thing.

But, back to the weekend. It was low key and lazy, which is pretty much perfect in my book. There was sushi and Vietnamese food and cake and lots and lots of flowers and hugs and maybe even a nap thrown in. What more could a girl want?

Things I hope to accomplish in my 44th year:

Design a cross stitch pattern

Draw more pictures

Try some block printing

Learn how to actually use Photoshop

Bake a really great loaf of crusty bread

Make changes to my work life

Better support Tom in his endeavors

Spend time with the boys each day after school

Invest time and energy in the people and things I care about

Continue to simplify our home and life

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Exciting and scary! Here I gooooo!!!

All in a day’s work

Helloooooo Friday!

Yesterday the boys came to work with me for Take Your Child to Work Day.  We have a big art department, so they got to spend their day sculpting and painting and creating various works of art.

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When I stopped in to check on them, my little joker was eager to show me his sculpture of a poop emoji. #proudmommoment

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It was a little sad to go into the office today without my little buddies, especially since they left behind reminders of their visit such as:

a portrait of Charlie on my drawing table

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a very brightly painted fox on my desk

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some kind of Pokemon sculpture

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and a little polaroid to remember them by.

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Have a great weekend!

Around Here

Hi Blog!

How do you follow up on a dramatic post about sewage? I don’t know… maybe a post about…

A car accident?!!

Yes, that would be little old me minding my own business on the way to work yesterday only to get caught up in a 3 car fender bender. Thankfully it was minor.

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But let’s talk about fun stuff.

This weekend was great. Things are pretty much getting back to normal at home. I have never appreciated plumbing so much. I spent Saturday and Sunday getting the house in order and catching up on fun stuff, such as:

… Baking ooey gooey chocolatey cookies with my boy.

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… Making homemade deodorant. They’re miniature which is not on purpose! I totally screwed up and ordered the wrong size containers. They’re good for travel or if you have tiny armpits.

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… Making magnesium gummies!

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I once wrote about the benefits of Magnesium on my health and wellness blog (which lasted for all of about 5 posts). It helps with a million things such as anxiety (check!), depression (check!) and insomnia (CHECK!) and most people don’t get enough of it. Anyhoo… I followed a recipe from Pinterest and made these. Aren’t they so cute? And super tasty. I’ll let you know if they actually work.

… Watching a lot of hockey. Does it ever get easy to watch your kid get slammed against the fence or wipe out on skates? Thank goodness for padding.

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… Secretly Snapchatting Tom and using funny filters.

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… Catching Charlie hanging out with his stuffed pal.

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Good Times. What’s new with you?

Pipe Dreams

Friday 5PM… Tom and I go out for a date night! Sushi (yay!) and a visit to a cool new art supply store near us. I buy stuff to do some linoleum block printing. All is well.

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Friday 9PM… Tom discovers that the utility sink in the basement has overflowed and flooded the basement. The new rugs that I just showed off in my last post are destroyed.

Saturday 8AM… Plumber 1 comes and says there’s a block in our sewer line which he can’t snake. Plumber 2 comes to camera it and only sees black water. They tell us that we have to dig through the foundation and replace the sewer pipes. It will cost thousands of dollars. We can’t use any water in the house until at least Wednesday.

Saturday 3PM… We decide to go stay at the beach house which has working toilets and sinks. Toilet flushing feels luxurious.

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Sunday all day… We try not to think about plumbing woes, go for long walks, and recreate bitmojis in real life after we find this sign in an old fashioned 5&10 store. Die laughing.

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I see this, but am able to exercise control and not buy it.

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Monday 6AM… The sun rises

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Monday 8AM… I cross stitch.

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Monday 2PM… Head back home. Charlie pees in the car.

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Monday 8PM… Go to dance class and learn the cha-cha. Giggle hysterically during the move where you “chase” your partner across the dance floor. Take turns chasing each other.

Tuesday 8AM… Insurance adjuster 1 comes to look at the basement. Plumber 3 comes to give us another opinion. He says we need to dig up the yard, not the basement. Draws lines for the digging. It will still cost thousands of dollars and the work can’t start until at least Friday.

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Tuesday all day… At work, thinking about how many months of work it will take to pay for plumbing and try to pee as much as I can at the office so that I can hold it all night.

Tuesday 9PM… Bedtime finally! Yay!

Tuesday 9:30PM… Tom hears running water in the basement as he’s locking up for the evening.

Tuesday 9:35PM… Discover the utility sink is SPEWING SEWER WATER everywhere and WON’T STOP! Floors are FILLING WITH SEWAGE!!!

Tuesday 9:45-midnight… Chaos. The township sends an emergency crew with huge trucks and lights. They find that it is the main sewer line in front of our house that has major blockage, not our line. They are able to stop it. On a bright note, our plumbing now works fine! I celebrate by flushing a toilet.

Wednesday 12:30AM… I go online to file a new insurance claim.

Wednesday 8:30AM… Clean up and restoration company comes to clean out the basement.  I hide in the bedroom alternating between crying about the mess and feeling thankful that we no longer have to do a major dig.

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I call this photo “Blooming Dogwood Against Township Sewer Truck.” So artistic, right?

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Wednesday 9AM-3PM… Talk to insurance people on the phone, including one person who can’t figure out how to fax OR email me a document.

Wednesday 3PM… Insurance adjustor #1 comes back.

Wednesday 8PM… Go to bed.

This and That

Hi Blog!

Here we are winding down another week already. This was a busy one, with a lot of commuting back and forth to NYC. The best part: I skipped my evening event last night and got home early. The worst part: The train was sooooo bumpy and sooooo crowded, I couldn’t cross stitch at all!

We started off the week with SNOW! Can you even believe that crazy business?

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Tom surprised me with new rugs for the basement to replace the ones that got flooded last year. Charlie approves!

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We got passport photos taken for the boys! Fun Summer trip booked!

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I’ve had the worst insomnia lately. Some nights I roam the house looking for a place to lull me to sleep. Good old Charlie follows me around. He has no trouble falling asleep no matter where we end up. Is it normal to be jealous of a cat?

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David Beckham embroidering. Insert all the heart eyes…

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And this cracked me up. Raise your hands if you can relate.

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Happy Thursday!

Accomplished

Hi Blog.

Behold… a cross stitching miracle…

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I finished the skirt! I don’t know why it has taken me so long. My heart just hasn’t been in it. But it’s done! Hooooo-ray!

This has felt like a long week (so much to do!) but at the same time like a fast week (no free time!). Isn’t it weird how it can feel like both things at once? How is that even possible? Doesn’t that go against all the laws of time and space?

Our accomplishments this week included:

Looking cute

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Getting a lot better at roller hockey. Check out #5! That’s my boy!

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Reinterpreting George Rodrigue’s Blue Dog paintings if Blue Dog was into skateboards.

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Finally mastering 5th grade fractions!!! Hallelujah!

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Charlie thinks that homework time also means chin scratching time.

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Did you have a good week? Happy Friday!

Spring Breakin’

tap… tap… tap…  Is this thing on?

Hi strangers! It has been awhile! How are you?

Spring Break has come and gone. The weather was warm and glorious. I like to take walks and pick up weird specimens to draw. This is from a “Princess Tree”. Thanks Internets for the ID!

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Check out this cool branch formation. Nature is so symmetrical!

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I thought I had hit the thrift store jackpot on a Q-snap frame. Too bad I didn’t read the package carefully because… hello

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It is the size of a table! And made for quilts! Ugh.

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Faceplant

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Littlest sculpted this. I think the resemblance is uncanny.

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Look at these cute rolls I made!

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Tom tried to walk Charlie on a leash.

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They didn’t make it very far.

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I stitched a little. Le sigh. Same ol’ skirt.

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Littlest wanted to stitch too, which made me insanely happy.

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Cute… Cuter… Cutest!

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We built a volcano.

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Because what else do you do when you’re bored and want to make a giant mess?

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But it wasn’t all fun and games around here. We tried to instill a good work ethic in the boys by offering them money to clean up sticks in the yard.

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That lasted about 20 minutes until I looked out the window and saw them doing this instead.

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That about catches you up. Happy Spring!

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The Grumps

I have been in the worst sort of mood lately. It doesn’t help that work is stressful, we have a million +1 obligations in the evenings and weekends, and I haven’t had much time at home. We introverts really need our down time at home. Am I right?

Today, especially, I need to remember the things for which I am thankful:

Biggest wanted to buy a crystal mining set with his own money. He spent all evening mining for crystals and would carefully wash each one that he found before showing it to us. Do you see Littlest in the background?

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He is soooo excited for roller hockey. He got his new helmet and wore it around all weekend.

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He wanted to practice roller blading before the big player assessment on Sunday. I didn’t realize that 1. there are still roller rinks around and 2. they’d be so crowded! It ended up being a ton of fun. Here I am showing off my stuff!

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Here is Littlest at the assessment. Doesn’t he look so official? My little BABY!!!

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The weather was gorgeous all weekend and perfect for outdoor activities.

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I love when something as simple as catching minnows can entertain the boys for a whole afternoon.

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Being outside does me a ton of good too. There’s just something about the sound of water rippling and the feeling of the sun sparkling from up above. It’s good for the soul.

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Tom and I went to a christening.

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And last night we learned the Foxtrot!

The End.

Breaking Bread

Hello Blog!

I went to the library during lunch last week and got a book on baking bread.

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Of course, that meant there was bread baking this weekend. The results were ok. I don’t know what the problem is, but my bread always seems just “ok”, never “stellar.” You know how sometimes you eat a piece of bread and there’s not even butter or anything on it, but it still tastes so amazing and delicious? Crispy on the outside but soft and a little chewy on the inside and just the right ratio of crust to center? That isn’t my bread. Does anyone have tips, or better yet, a secret family recipe to share? Sigh… dreams. 

I was cleaning on Saturday and came across my little loom from the weaving class that Stephanie and I took. I had no choice but to weave a few lines before putting it away. I just played around with trying to keep the lines even. It needs work.

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Littlest is starting roller hockey this week. It’s his first year, so in addition to learning the rules of hockey, he also has to learn how to roller blade! I am pretty impressed with how fast he got the hang of it.

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Yesterday, he asked me if I could practice with him, so I unearthed my dusty roller blades from the garage and strapped them on for the first time in 15 (gasp!) years. I’m not sure what I’m doing in this picture, but the smile is masking the terror I feel inside.

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Tom and I are watching the final season of Mad Men on Netflix (I know, we are hopelessly years behind on current pop culture). Binge watching a season means lots of cross stitching time.

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I finally finished the black part on creepy lady’s skirt. Wheeee! I’m on fire!

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Happy Monday! Did you have a fun weekend?