Friday, March 29

Moving Day

Victoria was here last week. Towards the end of the trip she started to get sentimental--the house we both lived in for two years would be sold soon and her reasons to visit DC would diminish. She kept asking me if I was sad--and I really wasn't. I figured I was too busy planning the boys' parties and distracted by the pregnancy and move to be sad. But pretty much as soon as I drove away from the airport, I cried. Because of all the sweet memories we have here--it's where Finley, RV Parties and Braden were born (in that order.) And a few other abandoned businesses (blog design and screenprinting...) As much as I sometimes complained about this area, I really do love it here. An hour after Victoria's plane took off, we finally got an offer accepted on a house. And the next day we had to take little Copper to the airport to fly and stay with Sol's parents while we are semi-homeless. Basically I cried for like two days. After the baby shower in Charlottesville and being surrounded with old friends, I started to feel a bit better.

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Virginia house on an overcast, grumpy day. With some weird stuff out front.

Yesterday, the moving company began packing up our stuff. Sol and I spent the last few nights trying to sort out what we'll need for the next few weeks (the boys and I will be living on air mattresses downstairs while the upstairs gets new floors and paint!) and what we'll need for the following month (the boys and I will be living with my parents in Little Rock). The fact that it was winter like yesterday and will be practically summer when we finally move in... and the fact that my body is rapidly expanding makes packing even more complicated. We are planning to close on our new house May 14. I turn THIRTY on May 17th, and told Sol that we needed a house by then. It's not ok to shack up with your parents when you are in your thirties. Oh, it hurts to say "my thirties."

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Pennsylvania house on a gorgeous sunny day. It's always sunny in Philadelphia, they say.

I am excited about our new house--it's nicer and bigger than anything we've had before. And it has a conservatory, and I've always wanted to conserve some stuff. I'm excited to replace some of our Craigslist furniture we bought 8 years ago and pick out things that I love. I'd also like to win the lottery soon so I can pick out things I REALLY love.

So, yesterday began the craziness that will hopefully end in the middle of May. I can't promise regular posts or really much of anything. But I'm sure I'll still be around posting things you just won't want to miss. Preview: Finley's Peter Pan Party and Braden's Train Bash!

Tuesday, March 26

Megan's Nautical Baby Shower

Eventually you'll get to see pictures of the first party I threw in my wild attempt to distract myself from moving... but in the meantime, the second party I helped out with was a shower for my tiny friend Megan. Her baby girl's nursery is nautical themed so I threw together some decorations to match.  I didn't go a fraction as crazy as I normally do since I wasn't actually the hostess... I was trying to be somewhat normal. Which is hard for me. (Cupcakes courtesy of my photographer on call, Jenn, who might need to add baker to her resume!)

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The shower was a little unique for two reasons--first, Megan is an OB so over half of the ladies there were also OBs. So the baby thing isn't quite as magical to them since they pull small humans out of big humans on a daily basis.

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And second, the party included four of my high school friends. The rest of my high school friends all chipped in and we pretty much bought her every pumping item on her registry. Because we thought that was awesome.

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Can't wait to meet Megan's little girl!

Thursday, March 21

How to Take a Toddler Shopping

This is all you need.

Really, this Phone Pod changed my life. As of yesterday. Normally when we have to go run errands, I arm myself with Goldfish, racecars and as a last resort--I attempt to hold my phone in front of Braden while he sits in the shopping cart to keep him happy.  I ran across this awesome phone pod at Target--for some reason it was marked down to $3.67 and so I grabbed it and ran. It clips on to shopping carts or strollers (or your steering wheel if you need to text and drive!!!) and is awesome.  Also I was kidding about texting and driving. If you are serious about getting work done while you drive get THIS. Or at least read the reviews, they are hilarious.

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Really, it's amazing. Braden sat in the cart at IKEA for an entire hour playing with a train app (and this dish scrubber). It's awesome. It's sold out at Target but you can buy it on Amazon for a dollar cheaper.

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And the mostly big thanks to Victoria for letting the boys play with her phone during lunch too--technology is the way to their hearts. We're having a lot of fun together... too much fun for me to blog regularly.

Friday, March 15

A Day with Finley and Braden

The monthly pictures have kind of fallen by the wayside... mostly because I can't get the boys to sit in a chair long enough for me to take them.  Vic emailed me several times yesterday with different ideas for capturing the details of our lives--both of our favorites was "a day in the life". So I made a conscious effort yesterday to take the camera out and carry it around to capture some of our every day moments.  There are many I missed, but here's a brief glimpse into yesterday. (Also, I'm in the middle of preparing for Finley's Peter Pan party, so if you look carefully you can see some decorations laying around. Also also, I love some of these pictures and the way the light falls, and some I did a weird job editing and do not like. For what it's worth, which is nothing.)

After breakfast, the boys normally watch Mickey Mouse while I clean up and get ready... then they get dressed.  Sometimes not all at once. Normally while holding the animals they love--Finley is rarely separated from Mama Monkey and Joggy Doggy (or Mama Monks and Jogs, as he calls them). And Braden loves that little tiger, which he calls a lion.

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Crazy bedhead hair on both.

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On mornings where we don't have anything planned, we go to the gym. Braden has finally decided he can be happy there, and it's a nice break where I get to exercise and have some me time--well, me and some show on the iPad.

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Braden always requests the same thing for lunch--chicken, applesauce, chocolate milk. That's also his standard order at Chick fil a.  Today we also added a quesadilla, and chicken noodle soup for Finley... which he claims is his favorite, but he barely touched.

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Finley's favorite time of day is Braden's naptime because that's when he gets to play with a lot of stuff that we don't get out when Braden is up.  And I love putting Braden down for his naps--he goes so sweetly and starts sucking his thumb as soon as you start walking into his room.  He cuddles Tucker the Giraffe and doesn't make a sound. Except to tell me sweet dreams.  Angel.

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Finley's favorite toys are his Magna Tiles--which my parents got him for Christmas. Seriously--these are the best toys. Everyday he's building something new--a castle, rocketship, battleship, garage, Transformers...  He also thinks he's the world's expert on Transformers even though he's pretty much only seen a 30 second clip of them at a museum. I often catch him laying down while he plays--I guess it really wears him out? We also do a few preschool activities, and if he's lucky he gets to watch Busytown while I take a quick nap.

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It's been slowly getting nicer... which is great. I often catch Braden trying to sneak into the backyard in various states of undress.  No shoes, no shirt, no problem. He loves to play outside.

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After dinner we read some books--in our teepee.  It's about the only thing that can make them sit still with me.

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And then time for brushing teeth and sleep.  More reading and cuddling in Finley's bed. Braden loves loves Finley's bed. I think he's convinced that one night I'll just let him stay there. He's wrong. Probably.

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I would also like to point out the VERY SPECIFIC way Finley has to sleep. Somehow our monkey collection has grown to three, and they all sleep shoved together with Joggy Doggy in a pillowcase from Barbara that Finley calls their sleeping bag.  Their heads can't be twisted and they have to be on THEIR pillow. They all come out during the night, so if he gets up to go to the bathroom I have to go back and re-shove them all in the pillowcase before he can go to sleep. It's really normal and not at all weird.

Quite a few times while I was shooting today, I wished the video was one because they are just so funny. From Finley's massive meltdown, to the way Braden snuggles in next to me--they are things that are just hard to do justice in a picture.

Thursday, March 14

A Long Time Ago, We Used To Be Friends

In general, I love everything. About most things in life, I tend not to be a hard critic. Don't ask me to recommend a TV show, because I'll recommend them all. I pretty much always think everything is great. (Notable exceptions: sports injuries and tomatos.)

If you know me in real life or on this old internet, you probably know that two of my favorite things (right after brown paper packages tied up with string SERIOUSLY) are Google Reader and Veronica Mars. The former is a feed aggregator that makes catching up with your favorite blogs too easy, and the latter is quite possibly the most perfect TV show ever made.

Yesterday was an interesting day for lovers of both things--good and bad. And the best part of it was how many of my friends contacted me to let me know about the news because they knew I loved it. There's nothing like getting emails/texts/FBs from friends regarding a Veronica Mars movie and the death of Google Reader.  That's right, two perfect things headed in two different directions.

After much talk and begging from fans, Veronica Mars is being revived as a movie.  (Probably not as exciting about Arrested Development on Netflix, but still made my day.) The team needed to raise 2 million dollars to fund the movie by April 12--and they exceeded that goal in a day. I donated enough to get me a digital copy of the movie when it comes out... but wished I had enough to score me one of the bigger prizes. Walk on role? Voicemail message from K-Bell? I wish. (In case you haven't watched it, you can see the whole show here and probably other places.) Vic and I have big plans to do some rewatching next week. It's one of the two shows I own in it's entirety--the other being Gilmore Girls.

And Google Reader. UGH. Well, as of July 1, it's gone. Very sad news for those of you who make use of it's amazing features. Feedly is supposed to be an excellent replacement, but I think it's overloaded and I haven't gotten in to work yet.

So yesterday truly was a day to celebrate, a day to mourn.  Here's to things that we love, and friends that love us enough to keep you apprised of big news regarding them. RIP Google Reader. And VIVA VEVE!

And mostly importantly, Happy Pi Day. May you never stop celebrating the goodness that is the ratio of a circle's diameter to its circumference.

Wednesday, March 13

20 Weeks with Baby Tres

Well, I've become the girl who gets harassed about not blogging enough... so here's a post. It's about my belly.

Here's some things you should know about baby #3. Even though I'm only just halfway through the pregnancy, my mind thinks I'm 9 months pregnant. My sciatica is terrible, I feel like I'm huge and yet look in the mirror and somehow still think I'm pulling off "not pregnant." I've started having intermittent heartburn. Doesn't that make you want to have a baby? I'm sure it does.

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I recently decided (and we'll see if I can actually do it) that I should stop running.  My achilles is still bothering me (FROM FIVE MONTHS AGO) even though I've only been running about once a week.  The benefit of pushing a jogging stroller extremely slow for three miles is probably less than the benefit of resting and being able to run well after this guy is born. So I think I'm going to continue going to the gym and watch Doctor Who on the elliptical... and maybe swim and do yoga. We'll see.

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Finley likes to brainstorm names with me and the only thing he is sure about is that the baby WON'T LIKE IT if we name him Goliath. But he would like David. Which won't work, since it's Finley's middle name.  Finley occasionally does some deep thinking about the baby, randomly letting me know that we need to get another car seat for the baby or asking me about the special X-Ray machine that lets us look at the little fellow.

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I hope you enjoyed the selfies... I'm not holding myself to a standard of taking a belly shot every week... just whenever I'm harassed for one.  I did a decent job with Braden so I pretty much know where this pregnancy is headed. Also, there is nothing worse than trying to take a picture of yourself while pregnant. What do you do with your face? Should I pop my hip? Does this belly make me look fat? I don't care.

Friday, March 8


It snowed here. You can never be sure about the weather--but we hadn't gotten much snow this year so people were extra ready to cancel school and pretend like the sky was falling.  The snow bordered on rain--and was terrible. It was pretty much just slush. And gross.

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I was reluctant to let the boys play in it--Braden wasn't interested but Finley sure was.  As a compromise, I brought in snow and let them squirt colored water on it.

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Big hit.  Lots of fun. They stayed warm and dry and occupied for quite a while! We also made snow ice cream, which is snow, milk, sugar and vanilla. It tasted liked you expect--like sugary snow. So... delicious.

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I could barely get them to stop playing to look up at the camera--it really was fun.  Thanks Pinterest for spewing snow ideas at me even when I don't want them.  I kept this in the Pinterest of my brain and was able to pull it out. Amazing!

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Tuesday, March 5

It's a boy. Again!

I'm sure any interested person knows by now... but in case you missed it, we're having another boy.  The third time is NOT a charm. Except we wanted a boy, so really it was.

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I was NOT surprised when when we got the news, but as it's settled in I've realized I'm a bit terrified. Three boys. That will turn into three smelly middle schoolers. That will eat a lot. And smell. And probably break stuff in my house.

I think I'm ok with it.

Our plan was to have the sonographer write down if it was a boy or a girl on a card we brought so Finley could open the envelope and be the one to tell us if he was getting a brother or sister.  We practiced reading and he was ready.  The sonographer was a bit weird about it and said they weren't allowed to do that but he would anyways... and then ended up putting the picture above in the envelope. Finley obviously couldn't decipher what was going on or figure out what word to read--so after telling us it was a girl, we double checked and he was wrong. Lucky for him--he wanted a brother.  Here's the video below:

So sweet! We're totally excited and can't wait. Also my eye has been twitching for at least three hours and I'm about to lose it. Send help.

Friday, March 1

Ch-Ch-Changes (Spoiler Alert: it has to do with moving)

Two big things are afoot.

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One, as you know, we're having another baby. Today we get to find out that it's a boy, or not a boy. My money is on boy... but predictably, we'll be thrilled either way.  We are in a fun position where we'd be happy with another boy because we kind of have that down now, and we'd be happy with a girl so there'd be someone's nails to paint around here. So stay tuned on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram this evening if you'd like to know... otherwise I'll be back Monday to fill you in.  (For now, enjoy these pictures of some cupcakes I took for someone else's Gender Reveal Party. It was somewhat related.)

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And two... we're moving. Sol starts a new job Monday. In New Jersey, which astute readers may realize is not where we live.  Same company but new position, this time supervising people mixing oil in a factory. He'll get to wear a hard hat! And unfortunately, have to work a night shift every third week... so we'll be figuring that out. The boys and I will be in Virginia for the next month and a half while we get housing straightened out and get our house ready to sell.  I think we'll be living in the western suburbs of Philly, so if you live there or know cool people there, please let me know!  We're excited to check another major city off of our tour of the East coast.

So stay tuned for more details about this baby (cast your votes below, Instagram was a bit tilted towards girl) and more details about where we'll be moving soon!
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