Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Maybe at least it would make a good story, I told my son.

I was hoping.

Not that this story is awful by any means. More … irritating, I guess, than anything else. But also kind of funny.

My son, who turns 6 in May, takes gymnastics twice a week. Mondays and Thursdays at 5:30. This week, though, his mom is running a St. Patrick’s Day 5K on Thursday, so we sought out a make-up gymnastics class for him last night.

We arrived, true to form, about a minute late. He ran in, while I parked the car. I gave him clear instructions to look for his teacher and head straight in to join the group.

When my 22-month-old daughter and I made it in, I immediately walked to the window to make sure my son had found his class.

Just about right away, I knew something was wrong. For one, he was almost a foot taller than the other boys. Second, he also seemed to be joining the group mid-class. They were on the bars already. Normally, they’d be running laps for a warm-up.

I asked at the front desk. Yes, the class my son should be joining starts at 6:30, not 5:30. I checked my phone for the time: 5:36 p.m.

Ugh. Lesson: Always double check what you think you know.

I gathered my children and headed for the car. Both said, “Where are we going? What are we doing?”

The truth: I hadn’t a clue. But I knew we weren’t staying at gymnastics for the next 54 minutes, just waiting. We live far enough away that it didn’t make sense to go home either.

We hadn’t eaten yet and the kids had already requested pancakes for dinner, so I decided we’d go to the nearby breakfast restaurant. Perfect. Dinner taken care of and time wasted!

Then I saw my son’s feet. I hadn’t made him wear shoes. He takes them off as soon as he gets to gymnastics anyway, why bother with tying them? No shirt, no shoes, no service. Awesome.

So we drove. We drove until Mommy saw a thrift store. We went in, my son barefoot. I told myself the fact that my son didn’t have shoes on and we were going in to shop at a thrift store didn’t mean anything about my financial means, despite appearances to the contrary.

Goldmine: Above a rack of clothes, I saw a pair of kids’ sneakers. They were white and royal blue and off-brand.

I’m also pretty sure they were girls’ shoes.

But they fit. So we bought them.

And then we ate a speed dinner of pancakes at the nearby restaurant. Because by the time we got there, I had to ask the waiter to please rush our order.

Finally, we showed up to gymnastics – again – a minute late.

This post originally appeared on

Monday, March 14, 2011

Days like these

You ever had one of those days where everything feels hard? At least harder than it should be?

They usually start in the morning. I burn the waffles. I spill the sippy cup as I'm pouring the juice. I can't find one of my daughter's shoes.

My son doesn't like the choices of pants in his drawer. He wants the pair of pants he wore two days ago and can't understand why they're not clean. It's not like he wore them yesterday.

My daughter trips on her blankie or an errant toy (book, movie, shirt, fill in the blank really) that's been left where it shouldn't be.

I wake up with intentions to shower but then run out of time. I can't find my toothbrush - it's probably hiding out with my daughter's shoe.

We leave the house late. My son can't find his hat. Or his gloves. Or his library book. My daughter cries for her sunglasses to be on her face right that second, MAMA!! Even though it's cloudy.

I forget my lunch that I actually took time to make on the kitchen counter. Again.

We hit every red light. There's no easy place to park to simply drop my son off at school.

I try to fight the urge to swing by Starbucks. I don't have time, I should save the money. I swing by anyway. And the drive-through is eight cars deep.

I keep on driving, wondering what's next...

These sorts of days.

Anyone with me?

This post originally appeared on

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Princess Paige

It's amazing how fast our babies grow. Last year at this time, my baby girl was still very much a baby. A baby with personality, yes. But still more baby than toddler.

A year later, Paige is talking better than most 21-month-olds, has transitioned well to a toddler bed and is just overall a joy to be around.

Of course, we love all our children with all our hearts, but she is extra special (so is her brother!).

Here she is in her new princess toddler bed, which a week later she is actually sleeping in.

Last weekend, she helped me make pancakes. I love this picture.

Here we were playing outside a few weeks ago. It was windy but warm enough to be out for a little while. Love that attitude.

And though she was a tad under the weather here (runny nose, mainly), she still looks beautiful.