08-21-17 Eclipse

On the way into work this morning I was surprised by the light volume on the roads. Monday mornings usually offer me the hardest commutes, so I was delighted when I made it to work in record time. As I was driving, nearly every story on the radio referenced the upcoming eclipse, and the best ways to participate. I hadn’t bothered to get special glasses, because I figured I’d just watch it on tv later, or live stream it at the office. We weren’t slated to get a total eclipse, but I was curious what it would look like.

It was supposed to peak at around 2:48, so at about 2:30 a group of us went outside. I was happy to see that other people had planned ahead and they brought their special eclipse glasses with them and they were kind enough to share.

The lighting outside was strange… it had the shade of an overcast day, with the hard shadows of direct sunlight. As we looked around we saw the interesting designs that were created from the shadow of the trees and leaves.

At one point we were lucky enough to have a cloud cross over the sun, and it acted as a natural filter and we were able to snap some pictures of the eclipse. It really was a fascinating experience, and one we will have to wait a few years to experience again. So glad I took the time to get outside and see it!!




08-20-17 The Day I Bought Ten Boxes of Oatmeal…

I struggled this evening on what to title this blog posting. I narrowed it down to two titles- “The Day I Bought Ten Boxes of Oatmeal” or “The Day A Hammer Fell On My Head.” In the end, oatmeal won because I had recently referenced oatmeal on the day my phone died, so we will start there.


It all started with Dinosaur Egg Oatmeal, as it increasingly does. I found some Dinosaur Egg Oatmeal at the store on Friday night and brought it home to some very excited children. But by this morning they had pretty much finished it off. That’s right, 36 hours and the box was nearly empty.

But this evening I came to the uncomfortable realization that I had run out of diapers and HAD to go to the store. While I was there, I noticed that the oatmeal was on sale…. Really, really on sale. In fact, if you bought one Quaker brand oatmeal, you would get a store brand oatmeal free. Great deal, right?!?! But wait, it gets better. I checked their stack of Dinosaur Egg Oatmeal and directly next to it was a stack of Animal Adventures Oatmeal (which is pretty much dinosaur egg oatmeal, but instead it hatches animals and vaguely tastes like strawberry.) And the Animal Adventures Oatmeal was even more on sale- $1.31/box. So, for every box of Animal Oatmeal I bought, I’d get store brand oatmeal for free. I grabbed four boxes of animal and one box of apple cinnamon, and then chose out my 5 free boxes of oatmeal- for a grand total of 10 boxes of oatmeal for $7.94. Yup, $.79 each. I’d say that was a grocery win! (unless my children suddenly decide that they don’t like the strawberry flavored animals, in which case my oatmeal is up for grabs.)


It’s stacked in this neat pile so the kids will get a little oatmeal shock and awe in the morning… And then I have to find a place to store ten boxes of oatmeal. πŸ™‚

As for my hammer story, Tim and I are doing a late summer cleaning of our house. It’s like a spring cleaning, except we are procrastinators, so it’s happening in August. Tim had been cleaning out the utility closet (also known as the closet I throw random junk in all the time so I don’t have to look at it), and I told him I would put all the cleaning supplies back on the shelves. They were all piled in the kitchen, and I diligently placed them on the shelves. At one point I lost my balance slightly and leaned up against one of the shelving units, which apparently made the other shelving unit move just enough to dislodge a hammer that was sitting on the top shelf (way above my eye level) and send it plummeting down ONTO MY FOREHEAD. I’m pretty sure the handle hit me first, and my lighting fast reflexes made my one hand push it out of the way quick enough to make it flip through the air before I caught it in my hand. If only I had video footage of this most amazing feat. I stood in the closet for a moment, making sure I didn’t have a hammer shaped hole in my head before calling out to Tim toΒ come quickly! A HAMMER JUST FELL ON MY HEAD!!!!Β Thankfully besides being surprised, I walked away with only a slight bruise on my forehead. Man, that could have been so much worse.

So now I am off to bed, to dream about oatmeal deals and vengeful hammers. Hopefully tomorrow will be uneventful. πŸ™‚

08-19-17 An Early Morning

In exactly one week, we will have a seven year old. It seems almost imaginable that seven years ago, I had already passed my due date and I was eagerly waiting the arrival of our baby. We didn’t know if we were having a girl or a boy, but I was convinced that it was a boy. I was wrong and now seven years later, my sweet girl is growing up quickly along with her little brothers.

When they woke up this morning we snuck out of the house and headed to the beach. C hadn’t been in weeks because she had been visiting my parents. They played in the sand and the water, but the water was much calmer today and they quickly lost interest. We ended our outing with an outdoor shower, which has become the highlight of Baby E’s beach trips.

I like going there in the early mornings because the beach is empty and all the ducks and seagulls are still hanging around, the humidity hasn’t kicked in and thankfully there are no jellyfish.


08-18-17 I Love You’s

The other night Big E came wandering into the kitchen while I was doing the dishes. He looked up at me with a puzzled look in his eye and for a moment I wondered if he was going to say anything at all. Finally he smiled and said, “Mommy, I love you.”

Big E is my main cuddle boy. He’s the one that goes out of his way to tell me that he loves me, crawls into bed with me in the morning, and will play with my earlobes when we are having a conversation. He can be sweetness personified and I love seeing his compassion in action.

So his “I love you” confession brought yet another smile to my face. I told him that I love him as well. He smiled, and hesitatingly turned to leave. To my surprise he came back and said, “Mommy, do you know why I say ‘I love you’ so much?”

“No, why?” I’m not sure what answer I expected, whether it would be profound for his age, or heart melting, or silly, but I waited in anticipation.

“Well, when I forget what I’m going to say, then I just say “I love you.” Is that ok???”

So apparently half the time he tells me he loves me its when he has forgotten the real reason he was going to talk to me in the first place! His little confession made me smile, though, and I love that his default response to forgetting something is to shower affection on someone else. I assured him that it was fine, and that it is always ok to tell someone you love them, but only if you mean it.

The rest of the evening he lavished me with I love you’s and there were a few times that he would sheepishly look up and say, “I forgot what I was going to say, but I really do mean it.”

08-17-17 One Thousand… And a giveaway!

Today is a pretty special day as it marks my 1000th consecutive blog post! Yes, you read that right, One Thousand! I’m still trying to wrap my mind around this, because when I started my 365 at the beginning of 2015 I had no plans beyond making it through that year. The blog has been an interesting conglomeration of parenting stories, photos, and memories. Many of you have read along from the beginning, and some have checked in through the years. While there have been some topics that have been off limits, I have strived to be honest and open with you as we have meandered through life. We’ve tackled some pretty tough subjects, and many of you have provided amazing encouragement through it all. You have watched our children grow, shared in our many parenting blunders, laughed alongside of us, and prayed for us when we needed it. Thank you very much!

As an acknowledgement to the blessing you have all been and in celebration of this 1000th post milestone, Β I’d like to do a giveaway! All you have to do is leave a comment about the blog- whether it’s a story you liked, something you learned that you never knew, or just say hello. πŸ™‚ I’d really love to hear from you!

The winner will be randomly selected by either Baby E (because he can’t read at all) or Molly’s tail as she rubs up against the computer screen. Either way, there WILL be a winner. And the winner will get a $10 Amazon Gift Card! πŸ™‚

Thanks in advance for playing along and may the odds be ever in your favor!


08-16-17 Dinosaur Oatmeal

My day started innocently enough when Big E and Baby E requested dinosaur oatmeal. I’m not sure if you have ever heard of this, but it’s oatmeal with little colored eggs in it, and when you add water and heat the oatmeal the eggs ‘hatch’ into what are supposed to be dinosaurs, but actually are just colored blobs of sugar.

Unfortunately for the boys we haven’t had dinosaur oatmeal in months and months. This led to an early morning meltdown, but I promised to stop at the store if I got the chance to look for some. (We are running low on oatmeal of all varieties anyways.)

As I got out of the house a few minutes early this morning, I stopped at a Dollar General on my way to work in search of dinosaur oatmeal. They didn’t have any, which wasn’t surprising, but I did remember that I needed cat food. I grabbed four cans, and as they were precariously stacked in my hands, I managed to accidentally drop my phone and sent it tumbling to the ground.


To my surprise, the screen was not cracked. I picked it up, paid for my cat food, and left. It wasn’t until I was back in my car that I noticed it wasn’t reading the SIM card. I couldn’t make or receive calls or texts. This had me a little worried, but I got to work with no other incidents.

I contacted my phone company, and we went back and forth for the better part of the day. My warranty had expired and I did not have insurance on the phone. I even took the phone to a cellphone repair shop, but they couldn’t help me either. My only hope was to get a new phone. As I looked online I realized the only new phones that worked with my carrier started at $650, which is way, way out of our price range for a phone at the moment.

So I checked Craigslist (cringe), Amazon, and Facebook Marketplace and finally found someone 10 minutes from my house that was selling the same phone I had. I contacted them and arranged to pick it up this evening.

After picking up the phone, I stopped by another store in order to look for the cursed dinosaur oatmeal, still unable to find any. When I got home, the phone wouldn’t let me set it up so I spent some time on tech support and then called the original owner. In the end, Tim took the phone back to the owner, they messed around with it for a bit, and finally got it working. So, to bring this drawn out story to a close, this stupid dinosaur oatmeal is the most expensive breakfast food I have yet to buy my children and I’ll never see a box of it again without thinking of this silly mishap!


08-15-17 Fatherhood


I snapped this photo outside the bathroom as I listened to the two boys squealing and laughing in the bathtub. From my vantage point, I couldn’t see them, but I could hear them giggling as they interacted with their daddy. I stood there, a silent observer, as I was reminded how incredibly lucky I am to have married a man that is so involved in his children’s lives. He never hesitates to jump in, and he doesn’t complain when I ask him to tackle tasks I don’t feel up to doing myself. (i.e. bath time!)

Fatherhood sure does look good on this man. πŸ™‚


Baby E is sporting a new haircut!

08-12-17 The Splinter

I’ve gotten into a bad routine since vacation… I’m staying up way too late in the evenings and it’s definitely catching up to me. And I’m not the only one, the kids have been going to bed later, which is a recipe for disaster. This morning, Baby E put himself down for a THREE hour nap!! Eventually I went in and woke him up, otherwise he might have slept all day. 

I took the boys to the beach today so that Tim could have some quiet to recover. He wasn’t feeling well yesterday. Then we walked around the boardwalk and pier. Big E got a massive splinter in his foot, which was very traumatic for him, but his awesome Uncle Davey came to the rescue and dug it out!

We ended the evening with a family trip to Walmart and then a walk on the pier, watching the storm clouds roll in. By the time we got home, it was monsooning, so the run from the van to the house was very wet! 

He painted his face. πŸ˜‚

This handsome fellow informed me that I’m his “Pretty Girl” this evening. 😍😍