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Tuesday, February 23, 2010


•Yep, I’m a Blogging-slacker. So, to make a potentially lengthy post manageable right now, I’m breaking my updates down into brief Tids and Bits.

•Tid One: I took last week off since the boys and I were home for Mid-Winter Break. We had a really nice break too – mostly low-key, not TOO much going on – and somehow, miracle of all miracles, the boys played amazingly well together ALL WEEK LONG.

•Bit Two: I get to keep a small Blog on the National Engaged Encounter Convention website (it helps that I, ya know, have a very close relationship with the webmaster…since he’s my hubby ‘n all). It’s fun and challenging because I feel like I have a “column” – a certain topic on which all writings should somewhat pertain, but I still do it in my own way/voice. The blogs (and Convention) are geared for other presenting married couples like us (and the occasional priest, deacon, nun who helps on the marriage prep weekends as well). SHOULD you feel so inclined you CAN check out my first few postings at

•Tid Three: Matthew and I were discussing the art of vomiting. I was explaining how it’s NO FUN but sometimes, when you’re sick, you just gotta do it ‘cuz your tummy needs to get yucky stuff out, and then you will feel better afterwards. He said, “I know! That’s why I’ve been telling Zach not to give up on throwing up!” Hmmm, I’d love to be a fly on the wall to hear the conversations that happen between 3 and 6 yr. old brothers.

•Bit Four: Yesterday, my parentals watched the boys so that Mike and I could go do something thoroughly pricey yet exciting (the next Tid for ya). They walked down to a park which also includes walking by a small, old cemetery (it’s fenced off most of the time as it’s a historical landmark). The Grandparentals were asking the boys if they knew what it was. Matthew piped up with something about it being where skeletons lived. Zach immediately offered a couple of thought-provoking questions: “After you die do you still get to burp?” And “Do skeletons go pee?”

•Tid Five – the most exciting Tid and Bit of all: Yesterday, we officially became “one of those.” We are officially a Mini-Van Family!!! Though, I prefer to call ours my Sassy-Wagon. We are making a little more space for our eventually expanding family (still no adoption news, fyi). And the ’95 Ford Taurus that Mike’s been driving for the last eight years is kind of just suffering and limping through life. So, he’ll now drive our (dark red)’98 Honda CRV, and I get to strut my cool mommy stuff in a (also dark red – coincidence, by the way) 2009 22000miles Kia Sedona!! Pictures to come soon. But just picture the coolest hottest ‘lil mini-van that you ever done see and that’s our beautiful doll, Kia! [Why change her name when she comes with such a good one? And it goes so nicely with my laptop’s name – Kara! (A name that Matthew provided never having known a Kara ever in his life.)] I look forward to workin’ the Sassy-Wagon today on the way to preschool, the gym, the library and the grocery store. Yes, very mini-van-owner type things to do, and I’m pumped!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

For those of you lacking the fun of facebook and being my facebook friend (and therefore occasionally reading my random “status updates”): Zach was in the bathroom yesterday taking care of business. I was sitting at the table finishing my cup ‘o coffee and dark chocolate fix. Zach suddenly yelled, “MOM! I’m POOPING VALENTINES!!” I’m not really sure what this means but I chose to NOT go inspect the results of his hard work. I know, right? Call me crazy.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Too fast! These boys are just plain growing up too fast. And there are two specific instances that have recently screamed their speeding maturity to me. First: Valentines. My boys no longer care for cute Valentines. Last year I was still able to convince Zach to go with “Winnie-the-Pooh and Friends” cards. And Matthew made his own John Deere Valentines. Not this year. Matthew’s eyes zero-ed in on a box at the store that screamed manly-coolness: “G.I. Joe – the Rise of Cobra.” OK, obviously he has not SEEN the movie – Rise of the Cobra as that’s rated PG-13. He doesn’t even know much about G.I. Joes – other than the fact that they are cool “army guys” – which IS cool, I will admit. But boy, do these companies ever know how to market their stuff or what?!! It’s like little boys looking at a row of Valentine’s cards at the store are already being judged on their boy-manliness. You MUST choose the coolest, edgiest looking box. And of course, following big brother’s lead: Zachary refused any box other than the G.I. Joe cards too.

And the messages on these cards! They crack me up! “You’re a true ninja!” “You’re skilled, Valentine!” “Your Primary Objective: Have a great day!” “Stick to the Plan and have a Happy Valentine’s Day!” “Prepare for Operation Valentine’s Day!”

Now, it will be interesting to see if Matthew gives love-interest Emma gets the same ‘ol G.I. Joe Valentine as everybody else. This is the other thing that tells me he’s growing up too fast: this little Kindergarten crush is still going strong and…oh man…they’re into “cuddling” at school! I asked Matthew the other day, when walking home from the bus, what fun things he’d gotten to do at school. He sighed.

“Cuddled. Emma and I got to cuddle at school.”

In my head, I did a sitcom-move: not taking my eyes off Matthew, I walked into a parked car or something. In real life, I kept my cool and said, “Where did you cuddle?”

“Oh,” Matthew says nonchalantly, “We cuddle on the playground, in the hallway, in the lunchroom, in class…wherever cuddling can happen, we cuddled!”

(Sitcom-take: I was drinking something. I spat-spewed it out.)

“So, what do you mean by ‘cuddled’?” I ask feigning the nonchalance in his tone.

“Emma puts her head on my shoulder and calls me Pillow.” He laughs. The little smooth-movin’ smooth-talkin’ 6 year old ‘playuh’ laughs – voice smooth as velvet with Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get it On” suddenly playing throughout the neighborhood on some secret sound system. The birds start flying in heart-shaped formation and bunnies – multiplying by the moment – frolic on grassy knolls-of-front-yards. He sighs again – an expulsion of kindergarten-love that still just seems a little too dedicated and serious for my taste. “I love it when she calls me Pillow.”

This is how I know my boys are growing up too fast.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

This is what love looks like…I don’t know what made me think of this picture this morning, but I did. And then I immediately felt a twinge of my picture-printing (or lack thereof) guilt. I have yet to really start photo albums for the boys, I have yet to get some more recent pictures of the boys framed and hung on walls. The guilt. But anyway, this picture is kind of magical (in my humble opinion), and never ever could have turned out had we tried to pose for it. Mike was ready with the camera and I’m so thankful to have captured this moment on film. It was the first time Matthew got to hold Zachary and the first time he saw his baby brother without any weird looking NICU stuff all around him. And my gosh! Zach was so tiny with his little flesh wrinkles and lack of baby chubs.

My mom came to the house to stay with Matthew while we went back to the hospital to finally get to bring Zach home from the NICU. While we were gone, Matthew asked my mom if he’d get to play trucks with Zachary. Well, now there are certainly days (multiple times a day!) when Matthew wishes that Zach wouldn’t want to play trucks with him! But the look on Matthew’s face – of innocent brotherly love and affection kind of makes me catch my breath. And for whatever reason, I just felt like sharing this picture with you today. Hope it makes you smile!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Ahh, the Zachisms – never ending; always funny.

Yesterday morning, Zachary and I headed downstairs so that he could watch a 20 minute show on PBS while I hopped in the shower. It was about 7:30 – so not super bright out, but not dark either. I was about to turn on the light when Zach yelled, “No! Mom, no. I don’t need the light on. I’ve been eating lots of carrots lately, and I can now see in the dark like a bat.” Really? Hmm, fascinating.
What’s really ironic about this is that the stinker actually has had carrot-related issues. He’s been a bit anti-them recently. And a few weeks ago, we discovered a withered little, flaccidly-floppy (or floppily-flaccid) baby carrot tucked discretely in the dark abyss between an arm chair and the wall in the living room. This was no accidentally lost baby carrot. This was a I’m-so-outsmarting-these-suckers-by-making-them-think-I’ve-eaten-all-my-baby-carrots-meanwhile-I-will-sneakily-create-a-baby-carrot-cemetary-behind-the-chair. Mooo-ah-ahh-ahhhh (evil child laugh)! They’ve so been duped.

And when did our little, sneaky carrot-planter get up from the table and chuck his carrot behind the living room chair?? It remains a mystery. But now, I know: maybe thanks to his ability to” see in the dark like a bat” he’s been able to alter his methods of carrot-hiding. He plays the role of a good, carrot-eating boy at the table; all the while he’s hiding carrots in his clothing. Then, later, under the cloak of darkness (which he can see in ever-so-easily), he creeps into the living room to give that poor unsuspecting baby carrot a dark, clandestine resting place.

Once I’d showered (woohoo!) and dressed (also very important and admirable), we headed out the door to preschool. Whilst in the car, I began singing the ABC’s. I told Zach that when I was a little girl (WAY back in the days of yore and yesteryear), Grandma and I would sing the ABC’s in the car ALL the way to my preschool…we’d see how many ABC’s it took us until we got there. (I hope that we didn’t live that far away. I have a vague memory of announcing that it took five times all the way through, but I may just be making that up.)

Zach was silent for a moment, and then said, “You sang the ABC’s when you were little?”

“Yep,” I said.

“But were they the SAME ABC’s??”

What? Like I’m SO old the ABC’s weren’t invented yet? Or we grunted them like cave people? What exactly are you implying, MR. Carrot Hider?!