Monthly Archives: July 2011



On the way home from VBS tonight

Ava: Mom, I am so glad I’m going to live at home during college b/c all the cute boys are here!

Me: Huh! Is there a cute boy in your class?

Ava: What would you say if I said yes? I mean there are a couple, and one in another class. Really, all the boys in the whole VBS. Well the ones who are 6 and younger. I want to have them over for a party with a spiderman cake.

Me: Um, OK <big sigh>

I know she didn’t mean CUTE how we think of it, more just like she wants to be friends with them, but still scary thought of having this convo 10 years from now, FOR REAL!


3 Little Fishies


This afternoon we ventured out to Alum Creek beach for the first time! How have we lived in Westerville for 2 years and not found this gem????? WE HAD A BLAST!!! All 3 of the kids were in the water THE.ENTIRE.TIME. Even little Ethan screamed hysterically when I tried to take him out to play in the “sand”. (After about 2 hours of constant water, I managed to get Ava and Ethan to come up and play on the sand for almost a whole 5 minutes before going back in.)  Ethan especially loved going in the deep water on Daddy’s shoulders.  We had a great game of boys vs girls water football, and lots of being thrown in by Daddy. Icing on the cake, we met/found a local farmer on the way home with yummy stuff for super cheap prices!! Wes even bought some pepper and tomato plants for the backyard garden that has been empty the last 2 summers. They are already partially grown so we can enjoy them ASAP!


*For some reason some of the pics decided to rotate on their own, and I can’t figure out how to undo it grrrr….

Yes, I forgot his swimsuit, but hey better to forget the swimsuit than the dipe, right?

OBVIOUSLY Justin had to come along 😉

First time in "beach" water, loved it!


Ethan thrilled that he "got" her


sand time

tasting the sand

not great, but apparently not too terrible since he went back for seconds

my big boys 🙂


Some cute quotes from around here lately:

After Ava had a bed slat fall on her smack in the nose, we were trying to figure out if it was broken or not:

Jer: Ava, here, I know how to tell (as he sticks his armpit in her screaming face). If you can smell my BO its not broken.


Ava has a new pet praying mantis who she has carried around all day.

Ava: Justin!! He just won’t blink! I keep challenging him to a staring contest, and I always loose!


And from a preview  that Wes and I saw out on our date:

“Having children, it’s…it’s like, it’s living with little mini-heroin addicts. You know, they’re laughing one minute and then they’re crying the next. And then they trying to kill themselves in the bathroom for no good reason. They’re very mean and selfish and burn through your money. And they break shit…” We were DYING laughing!!!

Midnight Rambles


This has been such a wonderful summer so far!!! We have traveled and played A LOT. We have also triumphed over some HUGE behavior quirks that I had been working on most of the last school year with the big kids (i.e. Ava coloring on herself/furniture/walls/basically anything BUT paper, Ava learning between stealing and borrowing, to put it nicely, and Jer’s work ethic). I have become more scheduled this summer than ever before in my life! I LOVE IT! Both kids have a designated hour of reading everyday plus 1/2hr of journaling/handwriting (jer) and workbook time with  me (ava). Last summer I just had Jeremiah do his “required” summer work and left it at that, and the summer before that we were in the process of moving to OH from NC, and he did nothing school wise, so it’s about time I get my butt in gear on this summer schooling stuff. He is currently working through the entire Chronicles of Narnia series (his pick) and I have come up with some fun projects for him as he goes through each book! It’s a fun way to work on his reading comp and creativity! We also have a weekly schedule of chores and “happenings” on the black board….and get this, I have ACTUALLY stuck to it! YAY! The fights about chores are pretty much non existent since putting this in place b/c the kids know on certain days, they have certain jobs and it’s not open for discussion. They are loving the structure (esp Jeremiah who cannot STAND how I am always late, change plans all the time, etc.) and I am loving the consistent help around the house!

This week, I have just been overwhelmed with feelings of gratefulness for my family. I seriously cannot believe God chose ME, a scatterbrained, disorganized, crazy woman to take care of these 3 sweet babies!!!! I am so lucky to be their Mom. And man, my hubby, how the heck did I EVER get him??? SOOO BLESSED!!!

In exactly one month, I will have 2 kids in “real school!” How time FLIES! I am so excited for one on one time with Ethan while they are away, and looking forward to being involved with the big kids at school too!

The last two days have been perfect weather! Sunny and breezy! We have spent a ton of time outside playing. Yesterday we spent the whole afternoon/early evening at one of our favorite parks. So much more fun this summer without having to be glued to a bench with a baby on my boob! I got to run around and play with all 3 kids! Here are some pics:

sharing the "king" swing

Playing the music game....kinda like DDR but jumping instead of dancing

I went to play with Ethan and came back and she was PASSED out!!!! Lately she's been falling asleep in the weirdest places lol

monkey 🙂

Jer and "new" friends having BEYBLADE wars (basically it's a top with a "shooter" that they gave a cool name so they could charge you 8 bucks for it)

Ethan wanting to play with the big boys

proof of aforementioned coloring problem....I found this on my phone from earlier this spring which had a text to Wes with a detailed description of my feelings toward her coloring habits lol! So glad it's over!

P.S. I am turning 27 on Sunday and am way less than thrilled to be considered in my “late” 20’s not mid or early anymore….and today got a sign of the times during bootcamp when my back started throbbing like an old lady’s….OY! Better bust out the night and eye cream!!

Family, Tae Kwon Do and Elliptical


What a great week-weekend!! My cousins came down to stay with us from Cleveland Wednesday-Sunday. They are 16 and 13 but play really well with my two older kids !! Their mom had business here in Columbus Thursday and she and my uncle headed home that evening and the kids stayed!! This is our only family with in a few hundred miles so it was soo nice to connect with familiar faces again. Below are some of the great memories we made!!!! (we were also babysitting my friend’s dog for the week who Ethan was MADLY in love with , but no, NOTHING could make me crazy enough to get a dog again….3 different dogs who we have tried being owners to in the last 3 years,3 strikes,we’re out …..I only want one thing that pees everywhere at one time and for now that’s Ethan 🙂 )

My baby girl at splash pad

all pooped out!!!

Ethan and his "love"

boys vs girls cookie making contest w/no adult help....girls won best look and presentation

boys mixing their cookies with ammo help of course....they left out a few ingredients, but theirs won best taste

When did he become sooo grown up????? Jer just being him 🙂

Jeremiah and Ava started Tae Kwon Do last week!!!! We have been out of sports since March and it feels sooo good to have them channeling their crazy energy into something organized!!! And they LOVE being together in the same class!!! As soon as I can sneak in there and get some pics I will….for now I will just spend the hour and a half chasing Ethan around trying to keep him out of the classroom…..hey it’s bonding time right?? 😉

Finally, here is my go-to cardio workout when I am feeling non-creative and just know I have to get it done!! ENJOY…PS be near a trash can 🙂

40 minute Elliptical and Weights Combo Workout














At least 140











































Hop off, do as many push ups in one minute



Do as many bent over rows in one minute






Hop off do as many squat jumps in one minute



do as many switch jumps (lunge jumps) in one minute






Do as many squat presses in one minute



do as many shoulder presses in one minute






















*This part of the workout is designed to push you to muscle failure meaning no “pink weights” (at LEAST 8-10lbs for the bent over rows and shoulder presses). You should HAVE to stop and rest multiple times. As always, listen to your body and if you feel dizzy/nauseous STOP , walk around and hydrate! Also note, this is an ADVANCED workout meant for those who workout on a regular basis. Enjoy!! (If you want a toned down version, subract 10-40 from the speed, depending on your fitness level, from each of the speeds, 5 from each resistance setting, and use 5 lb dumbells (anything less you might as well not bother using any). Leave the cross ramp, that’s the part that works your a** off…literally). Last note, if there are “handles” or things that move your arms, FORGET them!! Let go until you can’t stand it!! It will force you to use your core for balance, and who doesn’t want better abs?

When you’re done reward yourself!!! This has been my latest obsession for post-workout treat!!!! It seriously tastes amazing and satisfies my sweet tooth so I really don’t EVER crave sugar, plus it’s got 2 SUPERFOODS in it that are loaded with antioxidants and vitamins. In blender mix:

8oz milk (coconut, almond, cows whatever strikes your fancy)

2 c. baby spinach

1/2-1c. blueberries

4 large ice cubes

1 scoop  vanilla whey protien Make sure it’s 100% natural so the only ingredient is whey with the exception that some brands, like the one I use, have BCAAs added which are branched chain amino acids that are great in aiding in muscle repair post-workout. This is because unlike other amino acids, which are broken down in the liver, they are metabolized in the muscles. Here, they can be used to produce energy or construct new proteins. OK enough of my nerd rant. Enjoy!

Nutrition Stats:

230 cals

28g protien

12g carbs

Random thoughts, events, beliefs that are too long to put on Facebook that I want to remember forever….


So that title is the purpose of this blog. There are sooo many things I want to remember about these awesome years my kids live at home, and I want a place to store them, since I definitely have put my scrapbooking hobby on the back burner (read I haven’t scrapbooked since Ava’s newborn pics in 2006). Also, I am obsessed with nutrition and fitness information as it constantly changes. We as a species can learn how to perfect our machines to run at optimal performance which is a life long process . I also LOVE LOVE self help books on mothering and wifering (not sure if that’s a word ;P) So to start I am going to list some of my favorite quotes from THE MOST AMAZING book I just finished reading, TWICE, in one weekend. 🙂

P.S. I recommend this book to anyone, parent or soon-to-be parent!! However, if you are a democrat hater or easily offended, pass it up!

The book is called INSTINCTIVE PARENTING by Ada Calhoun. She is an editor for a big online blog site called She talks about raising her son in NYC and tricks/ideas/perspectives she has learned in her 3 years of being a mama. ( I know I have been a mom a lot longer than 3 years, but her book is basically everything I think about parenting (minus the non christian factor) that I’ve just been to chicken to say out loud!

 On making your kid(s) share and how some parents say their child doesn’t “feel” like sharing whatever they brought out today:

“What’s that saying, “Feelings aren’t facts”? That’s kind of handy. It’s not denying your kids’ feelings or disempowering them to insist that they share or say please. And sure, some days kids really don’t feel like sharing.  And on those days, they can do what we do as grown-ups when we need to take a break from polite society: stay home….”

 On trusting your pediatrician

“Everytime I am confronted with one of these researcher-parents, I wonder whatever happened to just doing things when your pediatrician said to? GOOD doctors have read all the research, or they’ve been in touch with the AAP advisory board, whose members definitely have read them all, and unlike us, they have zillions of years of education that lets them actually understand these studies and put them in context. (bold added by me) To believe there is a vast medical-industrial conspiracy working overtime to make you do something that’s bad for your kid is the height of narcissism. If you don’t trust your pediatrician on the simple matter of when to start feeding your kid rice cereal, I wanted to ask this no-solids food mother, why don’t you just find another doctor?”

This made me smile sooo much!! Most of the time I just kind of nod politely and agree in conversation with people who try to come up with their own medical diagnosis, and treatments ( I mean serious stuff not whether your kid is teething or has a cold)…..ummmm where’s your doctorate…..don’t have one….

 On staying home vs working. Ada knew a doctor who conducted a study on working vs SAHM moms. Here are some of her conclusions.

“You still end up with people seeing mother care as the gold standard and everything else as being lesser, whether that’s care by the father or something else. In my own study we had 1,200 families and there were some pretty awful full-time moms among them! The truth is, it depends. Who are we talking about? What mother? What family? What child? That’s why I don’t think there’s a lot to be said for generalizing. People say to me ‘What kind of care is the best for a baby?’ And really the best I can do is to give certain indicators of high-quality care. It just depends.”

I think if you have the means, stay at home with your kids. ESP in the preschool years and I’ve heard from mom’s with grown kids that when your kids are teens you want to be there every second you can. BUT if staying at home means your kids are going to veg in front of the t.v. all day or you’re going to be frustrated constantly and scream at them over everylittlething, then PLEASE go on a search and find your big girl panties, put them on, and change your attitude to love where God put you or go get a job, and let someone else stimulate and love on your kid so you’ll both be happy. Bottom line, whatever life scenario makes you the best mom while honoring God and nurturing your kids, go for it. There should be no condemnation for moms who are home or who choose to/have to work!

 On natural/epidural/csection/birth at home/birth in a hospital/birth in field 😉

One of Ada’s bloggers wrote this on the birth experience:

” If I’ve learned anything in ten years of motherhood, it’s that the way our children are brought into the world means very little for how they live in the world.”

Some women put WAY TOO MUCH emphasis on how their kids get here and whether or not  they “bond” instantly or how horrible the first few weeks are. I know that many women have had traumatic birth experiences, or have adopted at later ages and have great bonds with their kids!!! Stop looking back and enjoy your kids for WHO they are not HOW they became yours!

*Side note: I only had one “normal” birth as far as bonding goes. My first went to live with another family the first two weeks of his life over which time I thought I’d never see him again (more on that in a later post), my second was in the NICU for 3 days, and my third was my only room-in, come home with me baby. Yet, I feel equally bonded to ALL 3 of them!  Every Mom should be PROUD of having gone through one of the most painful processes in life to obtain a child: adoption (which I have heard is super emotionally taxing) or birth, just leave it at that. Be proud of yourself for doing it, disregard the details 🙂

This will probably be my only post ever on parenting since I don’t really like get on my soapbox in public. Thanks for reading!!