Eating snow, making messes, etc.

So like I've posted previously, I am desperate for ways to keep my kids entertained during this dreary Erie, winter. 

Currently they are each eating their own bowl of snow that I scooped from our porch. They are in heaven. Who knew? Snow+bowls+spoons=happiest kids ever. They are mixing, and distributing to other bowls and plates from their play kitchen. The snow is melting faster than they can eat it, creating a wet mess, but at least it's just water. 

We've also been baking up a storm. We made cranberry orange bread, more chocolate chip cookies than you shake a stick at, cranberry chocolate chip bread walnut bread (which I ate the entire loaf in 2 days). We painted pictures. We played a made up game "dinosaur of the forest" in which Abigail is always the dinosaur and she chases Olivia and I around the house. She yells "ROOAAARR!" Olivia and I scream terrified screams and run away from her. Then we laugh uncontrollably. 

We go from one random toy to the next. Never putting away. Leaving toys strewn about all three floors of this apartment.

And we watch TV. Probably more than an hour a day. Probably closer to 2 hours a day. And I'm kind of okay with that. Today Olivia watched the Cat in the Hat and she learned the colors of the rainbow, and which order they appear. I asked her a couple hours after the show was over what color is on top of the rainbow. She told me red. I asked which was on the bottom, and she told me purple. So I feel justified in letting her watch TV since she's not just mindlessly sitting there, but she really does learn what she watches. And then sometimes I take what we watch and try to create a little lesson about it. Or activity or something. So today we painted rainbows and hung them in the playroom. 

We leave tomorrow for ARIZONA!!!! My house is a disaster and the laundry situation is out of control. No packing has even begun. I need to get busy. 


And all I could think was this will be a good story for the blog.

Seemed like a morning just like any other. Drop Aaron off at school, come home for an hour, go to Jazzercise, play at Chik-Fil-A for an hour then pick Aaron up. Well at least that's how it should have gone. Everything was fine up until it was time to leave Jazzercise. Well maybe back up a bit. Olivia didn't want to go to Jazzercise this morning. She whined and cried like I was taking her to the dentist (well she's never really been to the dentist yet, but like I imagine she would if she knew what a dentist was). Oh wait back up even further. Get home from driving Aaron to school and there's a van in my parking spot. Both kids are in feety pajamas because I'm lazy, and didn't get them dressed before taking Aaron to school. (I at first wrote bad parent, but they had jackets on too, so I'm not bad, right?) So I had to carry both of them from the un-numbered parking spots which is MILES away from my parking spot (or maybe just across the street). And there was someone just sitting in the van! I made sure to give him my angriest glare, with a baby on each hip. So back to getting to Jazzercise. Olivia = nightmare. Get her screaming/tantrum throwing butt into the car. She is still throwing a fit when we get there. She's super clingy the whole time, and has to go to the bathroom. Meanwhile there are like 10 other kids in there I'm responsible for taking care of - I can not leave and take her to the bathroom. And she is capable of doing all this on her own. She just doesn't want to. lfkjasioguerjhagnklajgio;a

So then it's time to leave. I take her to the bathroom. While holding Abigail, and wiping her butt. How's that for a mental image. So then we have to walk like 5 feet across the dance floor, to where our shoes are. Olivia suddenly can't walk. Goes limp, cries, begs me to carry her. So again, one baby on each hip, get to our shoes. As I'm putting my shoes on Olivia miraculously regains the use of legs and takes off running around the dance floor with her shoes on. She will not listen to my hisses, yells and threats. I have to take my shoes off (no shoes on the dance floor rule #1) and physically grab her. Sit her in a chair and threaten her with her life if she moves while I put my shoes on. And before I have my feet back in my shoes she is running again. Well that's it, no more Chik-Fil-A. So she screams and cries. And as I'm dragging her to the car by her arm, with Abigail in my other arm, she sounds like she's being taken prisoner. Screaming bloody murder. And then as I go to strap her in her car seat she slaps my face and pulls my hair. OH NO YOU DIDN'T GIRLFRIEND! So her hand gets slapped. She cries and cries and cries and screams and tells me it's not nice to hit. Yeah. Good thinking. So now instead of spending an hour letting her play, and then conveniently going to pick up Aaron right at noon, I have to go home, unload them, find a way to entertain them for 45 minutes, then load them back up into the car and go to get Aaron.

Fortunately we picked up Aaron without much incident. Things were better once he was home. And mail came. A very generous gift from my mother. And the charger for the extra sprint phone we found. Woohoo! Except then once we plugged in said phone, it did not work. Boohoo. So that leads me to spending hours at the Sprint store, on the phone with Sprint customer service, and I still don't have a phone. But I'm getting one. No hate to Sprint. They are fine. It is just a process.

And then I tried to thread my sewing machine and almost poked out my eyes out of frustration.

Now I'm ready for bed.


"King of the Juice"

I am seriously considering changing the name of this blog to something like, "Overheard at the Opie's" since my main topic of writing is random funny things Olivia says.  As you know from my last post I have been trying to find ways to entertain without TV. And Christmas is coming up so we've talking a lot about Jesus and his birth. The whole no room in the inn, born in a manger, was getting kind of old. So I added a few more details, like King Herod asking where is this "King of the Jews"? And ordering his execution. I know a bit much for a 2 year old, right? Anyway, she was like, "Mommy, why was he the king of the juice?" 

Yes, Jesus, King of the Juice.


Wanting to be better

I always want to be better than I was yesterday. And even better tomorrow than I was today. I struggle a bit with feeling good about what I did, and wanting to be better. It's easy to paint a picture of a perfect life on a blog. And it's also easy to read other people's blogs and compare your life to their blog life. Talk about comparing your worst to someone Sunday's best. A few people put real life on their blogs, but for the most part you don't really want to blog about a fight with your husband, disciplining your kids, or gaining weight. Anyway, so I was going to write this post about how today my kids only watched 1 hour of TV, and I stayed away from the internet for most of the day, and spent quality time doing fun things like making Reindeer food, and putting up our Nativity for family night.

But really I spend way too much time on the computer. I spend far too many mornings plopping my kids in front of the TV, and sitting in my PJ's on the laptop. Of course it's justified because they are watching PBS kids. I mean really it doesn't get more educational than that, right? So I decided last night I'm only going to come on the computer when the kids are sleeping. And I didn't even really do that today. Mostly I did, but I kept coming to check just "one thing".  But I realized I'm going to get to a point where my kids are going to be in school and I'm going to miss this time I could have been spending with them. So now I'm trying to come up with creative things to do when it's way too freezing to go outside. That doesn't involve the TV. Yeah, it's not so easy. Especially when my kids have the attention span of gnats. Or toddlers. Which is probably shorter than gnats.

I watched this video on Youtube about this mom with two kids with special needs. The video was very inspirational. But the one line that stood out the most to me was when she said, "I'm a mom, and I take my job seriously." I really haven't felt like I take my job as a mom seriously. So I started today. And I'm exhausted. And now I'm rambling. So yeah. I'm trying to be better. I should probably start with the dishes...


A perfect Sunday. Woke up at 7:00am, got ready for church. Was able to sit through most of Sacrament Meeting, until Abigail hit her head and cried at the very end. Nursery was quiet. All kids were pretty happy. We got to leave last hour for Relief Society. Came home and had homemade chicken soup for lunch. Took naps. Cleaned up living room a bit. Had a yummy dinner of baked potatoes and bbq brisket. Drove around and looked at Christmas lights. Now kids are watching a movie, until bath/bedtime.  A moment to remember:

Olivia is wanting to do everything herself. She put on her own pants (inside out and backwards) and then she wanted to put on her own shoes. She had them on the wrong feet. I said, "Wow Olivia, when did you get so big, you can do all this by yourself?" And she replied, "I have to. That's because I'm a GROWN UP now."

It was just too cute to see her sitting there with her pants backwards, shoes on the wrong feet, some dinner still on her face. And she's a grown up.


Port Farms Christmas

Tonight we went to have cookies and hot chocolate with Santa. I loved it. Here a few picture highlights.


Again with Olivia's faces....





Cute kids, huh?


Olivia moments to remember

Today was Abigail's turn to wake up with a fever. Awesome, right? I was telling Olivia that Abigail had a fever and we had to take good care of her today. Olivia stood up and looked at Abigail really carefully. Then she told me, "She has smoke inside her tummy. And the smoke comes up in her throat. That's why her throat is hurting. And the smoke is making her head hot."

I absolutely love the science of the little children. And can I just say for a moment that she's a freaking genius. I mean, obviously that's not how it works, but it amazes me that her two year old little mind is trying to figure stuff like this out. That sounded like a theory I probably would have come up with when I was like 10.

Later while Abigail was sleeping we went to the playroom. Olivia, all on her own, said she wants to give some of her toys away to little boys and girls who don't have anything. I was feeling all warm inside at the sweet generosity of my daughter, until she brought me the toys she wanted to donate. Her basket included:

-1 puzzle piece (when told she would have to give the whole puzzle if she wanted to give that piece she quickly changed her mind)
- one part of a McDonalds toy (the other part was "too special" to give away)
- another part of a different McDonalds toy
-one scoop of fake ice cream from this fake ice cream kit
- a nutcracker decoration she took from entry way
- and one of my bath fizzie things (she said "for kids who hab bafftubs but dont hab any bubbles for dem".)
But not the basket, that was also "too special".

And now I have to go because I was just informed that there are "two spider in the potty, and dey won't flush". Better check this out.



So the day was looking good when it was 7:20am and the kids were still in their rooms. I'm not sure they were asleep at this point, but they hadn't woken me up so that was a plus. But the moment was overshadowed by the fact that I now had 20 minutes to get both kids dressed and face the snow to drive Aaron to school so I could have the car for Jazzercise. And my nose was clogged. And my throat hurt. And then the moment I touched Olivia I knew we weren't going anywhere today. She was burning up. So I had to call and cancel Jazzercise which I HATE doing so much. But it wasn't too big of a deal.

So we stayed in our PJ's and watched pbs kids. And then Abigail wouldn't take her morning nap. And then she was really cranky. So then I gave her my phone to play with because that never ceases to bring silence. But then I couldn't find my phone. Then I found my phone.

Wedged in the depths of the recliner. And when I say wedged, I mean WEDGED. Like it would NOT budge. I was pretty ready to accept the fact that my phone was entombed in the recliner and that's where it would rest. But after about 15 minutes of different angles of pushing and pulling and wiggling, I got my phone out.

Only to see the touch screen has a huge chunk taken out. This phone relies heavily on the touchscreen and pretty much doesn't work at all without it. So I have no phone.

Oh and while I was moving the chair around to get to my phone I found a squished BLACKBERRY. Not like the phone, but the real fruit, that stains incredibly bad, blackberry. Smushed into the carpet. I have no idea how long it's been there. I'm pretty sure any attempt at removing the stain is going to be futile. But I'll try. 

And it's still snowing. A lot. So that means no mom/nanny-funness happening this weekend.

So let's recap - sick me, sick Olivia, broken phone, lots of snow, ruined carpet, and no mommy.   :( 

(Sorry mom, not trying to guilt trip you - it's bad out there, it's good you're not coming.)



 Yeah they don't look so good. I think sufganiot is probably best left to the Hebrew experts. But we watched them being made on Sesame Street, and Olivia came to me and asked, "Mom can we make see-see- those doughnut things?"

They actually tasted amazing. I got the recipe from Martha Stewart's website. The only problem was I had the oil too hot, so the first few got kind of dark. Then I lowered the heat too much and so the last batch was kind of dough-y. But still good. All good.

We are celebrating our Jewish heritage tonight. Ya know since my cousin married someone who is Jewish, I'm pretty much orthodox.  Really we are just eating sufganiot, and singing the dreidal song. (I could just imagine my Poppy's reaction to this evening's festivities.)


My kids have been waking up no later than 6:00am. EVERY SINGLE DAY. Today was actually 6:00am. Most days it's been somewhere around 5:30. They seem to go through these random spurts where they like to torture me like this. I need to start going to be earlier. I haven't been getting more than 5 hours of sleep, and that makes me grumpy. And they're grumpy. And when we're all grumpy it's not a good combo.

Olivia has dance class today. There's like 3 feet of snow on the ground. And I'm grumpy.

My mom and nanny are supposed to be coming for a little visit. I really hope they can make it, but this weather is a bit unpredictable. But still it would be so nice to have them. And Nanny has never seen my own house. Which would be nerve wracking, but fun at the same time. Seriously my Nanny (what I call my mom's mom) irons pillow cases. She literally feels sick at the thought of leaving the house without her bed made. She can't sleep if there's stuff in the dryer. She never sits still all day long. She's 79 years old and she painted her basement stairs one day to make them look nicer. In fact, it might be better if they can't make it because seeing my house might give Nanny a heart attack. I started my cleaning attempts on Monday but it's kind of futile with Hurricane Olivia, and Tropical Storm Abigail swirling about. And let's be honest, it's a special treat if I make my bed.


I took the kids out in the snow the other day. It was the first time using the new baby sled. It has a little buckle, and is designed to hold one small child. So I put Abigail in. Buckled her in, and took her to the little hill on the side of our apartment. The hill is pretty wimpy. And it flattens out for a while before going to the parking lot. A very empty parking lot. In fact where it ends isn't even really parking spots, just the end of the parking lot. Can you see where this is going. So the hill is so wimpy I never could have imagined Abigail would reach like 20 mph in her little baby sled, speed down the hill, down the flat part, off the curb, into the parking lot. As soon as I saw her gaining speed I started running after her. She was seriously flying! I couldn't catch up to her. I thought about lunging my body forward and trying to grab the sled before it reached the bottom of the hill, but I could really only imagine that scenario ending badly, so I just tried to run faster. And then she went off the curb into the parking lot and I really tried to book it. I may not be the brightest crayon in the box, but I know baby in a sled in a parking lot could be seen as child endangerment or something. And then right as I was reaching full speed, and about to catch her, I slipped on a patch of ice. I think I literally flew in the air, because when I hit the ground the air was knocked out of me. Fortunately Abigail was stopped just a few feet in front of me. Olivia was standing flabbergasted at the top of hill asking, "Mommy what happened?" All of this literally happened within a minute. I just laid there on the cold ground for a minute thinking about the situation and couldn't stop laughing. I got myself up, got Abigail, and decided to go inside until Daddy got home.

I checked the 10 day forecast for Erie. There is literally not a single day without a chance of snow. I miss when the 10 day forecast showed nothing by sunshine and the occasional cloud or two.



Aaron and I played Scrabble tonight. And he kicked my trash. His vocabulary is insane. I challenge almost every word he throws down.

"DIAZO?! THAT IS NOT A WORD!" And his "z" was on a triple letter tile, so I was extra angry. He looked it up. It is a word. And it's in the scrabble dictionary. Grrr... I seriously make him look up any word that's going to get him more than 30 points. And then when it's my turn he helps me find the best placement of my letters. I yell and call him names. He helps me, and tells me to calm down.

Easy for him to say when his lowest point word was worth like 15. How can I compete with that. I have a new goal in life. Forget all that virtuous woman crap, I am going to improve my Scrabble skills.

Look out Aaron, you're going down.

....and I think I may take Scrabble a little too seriously.


Eateth not the bread of idleness.

So this morning I was in a bad mood. Did you read my last post about my night last night? It was not the best not sleep I've had in my life. And it was preceded by 4 or 5 nights of less than 5ish hours of sleep. I can take one or two bad nights, but after that I am just a grump. So this morning Aaron said it's not very often he gets worse sleep than me, and he coudn't wait to come home and take a nap. And my blood boiled. I SLEEP THE WORST! WERE YOU UP WHEN ABIGAIL WAS CRYING AT 4:00AM?! DID YOU GET YOUR BOOTY OUT OF BED AT 5:30 WHEN OLIVIA WOKE UP FOR THE DAY?

And then I was sorry. Because remember all the puke cleaning from last night and whatnot? And he probably did sleep worse than me last night. And it's not a competition. We're on the same team.

But I was still grumpy. And I decided I would spend today in my pajamas and not do anything productive at all, except keep my kids alive.

I did read my scriptures. And I read Proverbs 31 verses 10-31. Here are some of my thoughts I had while reading.

10¶Who can find a avirtuous bwoman? for her price is far above rubies. This was in ancient biblical times. If it was hard to find a virtuous woman THAN, I imagine today her value is even higher.

11The heart of her husband doth safely atrust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. I think this means he knows she won't cheat on him, and he won't cheat on her. I think.

12She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life. Like not biting his head off for saying he got a worse night's sleep than you.

13She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with herahands. Okay... buy cute fabric at Joann's and make stuff. I can do that.

14She is like the merchants’ ships; she bringeth her food from afar. Grocery shopping?

15She ariseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. Yeah, that whole riseth while it is yet night is pretty familiar.

16She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. Gardens?

17She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.

18She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night. Shop all night? Again though, the whole her candle goeth not out by night is sounding pretty familiar.

19She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold theadistaff. Sew. Okay got it.

20She stretcheth out her hand to the apoor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.

21She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet. Go play in the snow with the kids today. No problem.

22She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her aclothing is silk and purple. Wear more purple?

23Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land. Have you seen Aaron sitting in the gates? Yeah he sits with the best of them. I really have no idea what this means.

24She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant. Ohh, pretty sure I'm being commanded to open an etsy shop.

25Strength and honour are her aclothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.

26She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of akindness. If I don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all. I should work on that.

27She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of aidleness. And this is the verse that struck a chord. I think I eat kind of a heck of a lot of the bread of idleness. Like how many hours do I spend on facebook, watching tv, reading blogs, etc.

28Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also,and he praiseth her. PRAISE ME!

29Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Me? Who was this written to? I'd love to be her.

30Favour is deceitful, and abeauty is vain: but a woman thatbfeareth the Lord, she shall be praised. UAdd a Note

31Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.

Wow. I've read these verses before. But something really touched me today. I've been focusing a lot on beauty. Not so much on fearing the Lord. I pondered for a few minutes about what it means to be a virtuous woman. And then I also realized I'm raising two daughters. I feel like I've been an example of idleness more than an example of a virtuous woman. I know I'm not the worst mom in the world. I also know I'm not the best. And I can try harder. And be better. And hopefully raise my daughters to be virtuous women.

So anyway, I decided not to spend the day in my pajama's. And to really look well to the ways of my household. And I taught Olivia how to fold laundry. She was so proud of herself for folding pants all by herself. So I'm going to excuse myself from the cyber world today and work on that.

Thanks for reading my ramblings. If you made it this far you deserve a medal of some sort.