Thursday, January 31, 2013


When I go to the gym I always take my iPod and headphones and this is about the only time I listen to music, unless it's the radio in the car. My husband really enjoys listening to certain songs and a lot of them mean something to him. My choice of music is generally faster and upbeat - because I workout to it. While my husband is almost strictly a country music listener, I listen to some pop along with country and maybe a little bit more variety. I do not listen to Justin Bieber -  sorry just not a fan; however, for some reason that I am still not aware of our son seems to like listening to his songs. The Beauty and the Beat song comes on the radio very often and we don't spend a lot of time in the car and each time it plays, my son will ask for me to turn it up. With rolling eyes, I generally do.

The other day I stopped to refuel my tank and turned the car off and gave him my phone to listen too. I showed him how to seek through the songs, turn the volume up or down and remove the sync with the car when I started it again. I have a clean version of Live My Life by Far East Movement that features Bieber, so we started with that. And while he did like listening to it a little bit he found a new favorite - Carrie Underwood. I think I heard the same song about five times in a row because I believe he just likes looking at her picture. Now when we go anywhere my son asks for my phone to listen to music and we always have to listen to an Underwood song. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Conversation Hearts - Countdown to Valentine's Day

I wanted to make some sort of countdown to Valentine's Day for our family but I was looking for something other than presents or gifts. I was reading another blog online about a family that put a bunch of questions on paper, cut them apart and placed them in a box at their dinner table. Each night one of the family members picked out a question and they all had to answer - now the family had older kids so much more in depth questions but I loved the concept. I wish I could remember the mom's blog because I would link back. 

Okay so how do I make this look like it's for Valentine's Day and incorporate some sort of countdown? (Please keep in mind that I am not the most arts and crafty person; not even close to being mediocre.) 

I decided to make Conversation Hearts our way. I came up with 14 different questions that included, what is your favorite book, what do you like to do on a sunny day and if you could have one magical power what would it be. I plan to cover each question and how it was answered in upcoming posts so please come back to read. I then put a question on each pink or red strip, folded in half and shaped like a heart. I paper chained them together so we can hang on our pantry door and my son can pick off a heart each night, starting February 1st. I'm really looking forward to hearing my son's and husband's answers, especially the magical power question. Actually, I'm not sure what power I will pick. What about you? 

Sled Riding

We've been a part of the arctic blast for the last couple of days as I had mentioned in a previous post and haven't been able to go outside unless it's too hurry to get to the car or get in the door, let alone play. But yesterday it warmed up just enough to snow about five inches. Which was fantastic because that's just enough snow to be outside and go sled riding. After 30 minutes of sledding down the hill, walking down to meet my son to help him back up because the hill is just steep enough that sometimes he can't quite get up with the snow pants, jacket, gloves and sled holding him back, our hands were freezing. Time to go inside for hot cocoa and decaf coffee for momma. We went out again for another 30 minutes after he were warmed only to do the process all over again. I can say I loved every single minute of it, I may have enjoyed it more than a four year old. And you know what...I'm perfectly okay with that. :)

Friday, January 25, 2013

Go Fish

Some days I need to remember what games I played as a kid because I seem to forget the classic, simple games that were fun. With the Wii gaming systems, the iPhones or computers, and even LeapPads my mind doesn't always jump to something like Go Fish.

It has been bitter cold here the last few days so going outside to burn energy hasn't really been an option and I really didn't want the television on or anything electronic so up to the toy box to choose something other than Legos. Don't get me wrong, I really like the Lego building but I'd had enough and wanted something else. I pulled out the unopened Go Fish card game and asked my little guy to play, he wasn't exactly thrilled - how could he be when he's never played - that's okay I knew his perception would change.

Our family is fairly competitive - someone wins, someone loses and as long as you don't get too carried away you can make a fuss over winning. We don't tie and my kid hates to lose but he has to learn that he can't always win. However, you need to want to win and do the best job you can. I'm not trying to sound like I'm on my soapbox but I don't like when everybody wins, that's not life.

After going over how to play and the concept we started asking each other for the angel fish, sharks, and whales. The hardest part for a little four year old...holding all the cards without showing me, so I'd recommend a high table and several chairs so he can lay his cards out beneath the table. Needless to say he did win, fair and square, and loved playing. He actually wanted to play again and told me that he definitely could win.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Two Hour Delay

I know there will come a day that my son actually likes a two hour delay and loves a day off of school but right now, he would much rather go to school. He attends preschool three days a week and he was disappointed with his Christmas/Winter break and this morning he had a delay because of the frigid weather. He was upset because he wouldn't get to have snack with his friends and then who would be the classroom helper.

Not only did he ask me several times between the hours of 6:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. if it was time to go to school but he actually ran to get in the car and into the school. And yes, you read that right, he still wanted to get up at 6:30 a.m.

When I picked him up I found out that having a delay wasn't that bad because they did have snack ... cheese sticks, pretzels and juice. He regularly doesn't tell me about the sign language letters they are learning, the letter and numbers of the week, the stories they are reading, the projects and etc. but I do hear about snack, who he sat by at lunch and if he talked to someone quietly during nap time.

I see and hear throughout the other days how much he is learning so I don't mind that I only get the food and nap updates.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Ever Play Shadow

I'm sure everyone remembers asking someone or being asked to play 'shadow.' There may be different names of the game, but you ask someone if they want to play shadow and repeat everything they say, basically just to annoy someone.

Today I tried to teach my little guy to play, we were at home just being silly and I asked him if he wanted to play and then continued to repeat anything he said, "I like the ninja turtles, Mommy what are you doing, no what are you doing, I just asked YOU that." He started to giggle and laugh, it was contagious. After we composed ourselves just a little I explained the rule - once you ask someone if they want to play, you repeat everything.

It worked as long as I didn't ask him a question, because instead of repeating he answered each question. It was so sweet and cute that I couldn't help but laugh, which again is contagious. I told him he'd have to try to play with daddy.

When daddy got home, he tried so hard to play without answering when his dad said, "what's shadow?"

Instead he looked right at me and said, "mom can you explain the rule?!" Questions seem to throw him off.

I think we need some more practice; however, one day I feel I'll regret teaching the game to a four-year-old that talks non-stop anyway.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Gender Cupcake

When we found out we'd be having another child, everyone in our immediate family was absolutely ecstatic, yes my husband, our son and myself. My husband and I had tried for a really long time, maybe more on that at another time, but we were just thrilled. We had kept the announcement quiet for quite a while and that included an extremely talkative four-year-old little boy keeping a secret. To make our pregnancy announcement we waited until Thanksgiving and had our son wear a 'Only Child Expiring June 2013' shirt.

Now because it's been over four years of our son being an only child we decided early that we would try to focus on including him in every announcement and trying to make him a central point in everything, which I'm sure a ton of parents do.

One of those big moments for us is finding out the gender of the baby - I think that the people who keep it a surprise are amazing but I could never go that long without knowing. I just don't want to. Anyway, I do love Pinterest so I had looked at a ton of gender reveal party ideas and different ways to announce the gender but instead of inviting everyone and having a party I thought it would be great for our little guy to tell us if he's getting a little brother or a little sister. Plus my husband didn't know if people would travel all the way to our place just to know if it's a boy or girl. Okay, so let's get one cupcake filled with pink or blue icing for the soon-to-be big brother.

Just a little side note - I stopped at the bakery at Giant Eagle, explained what I was hoping to order and after they looked at me like I had completely lost my mind, I was told they don't fill cupcakes, and they don't fill with different colored icing. Okay so on to bakery #2, oh forget that because they had closed for an extended period of time. Now my son is getting a little disappointed because he was hoping to get a cookie or donut or at least something. Instead of driving all over I thought maybe it would be best to call bakeries; the third bakery, Bartram House Bakery, were so pleasant and nice and more than willing to create a special cupcake. They also have a great assortment of other pastries and cookies. :)

After the ultrasound appointment, getting the gender written on a paper that was sealed in an envelope and delivered to the bakery, we waited. Almost 24 hours. Actually we were supposed to wait until daddy got home from work but he had called at lunchtime so with a crazy loving chocolate kid that desperately wanted to eat his cupcake and a mommy and daddy that weren't exactly patient we stayed on the phone while the little guy took a bite out of his cupcake.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Valentine's Day School Party

I've been scouring Pinterest for great game ideas to have at the Preschool Valentine's Day Party and there are some really fun ideas but these are preschoolers and b-i-n-g-o is out! I really liked the idea of shooting Nerf darts at hearts or balloons and while I think the kids may have a blast doing this, I'm pretty sure the teachers and principal may not be so keen on this idea for obvious reasons.

I'm a homeroom mom so I'm in charge of finding the volunteers and asking the parents to bring in the snacks, ideas and crafts. I have to say out of the 15 kids in the class, 14 of the parents are absolutely involved and willing to help. Our class and I really lucked out, I know a lot of homeroom moms that aren't so fortunate.

For this party the menu needs to be vanilla ice cream, fresh strawberries, blueberries, bananas, light whipped cream and water. We aren't allowed to bring in syrups or sprinkles but they get ice cream!!! As for the valentines, well the kids aren't allowed to bring any type of food to distribute but I'm thinking that's becoming the 'normal' thing throughout many school parties which is just fine with me and my little guy. He likes the pencils, books, crayons and stuff much more than the snacks.

Anyway the harder part of the party instructions ... the craft and the two games. The craft I think is much easier - kids love to paint, play with play dough and make things with stickers but as far as the games, I'm stuck in a rut. I want to have something fun, make them move and not be too difficult to learn in a short amount of time. I'm open to suggestions and help is appreciated. Thanks!

Baseball Ready

Sign ups are in a month for spring/summer baseball and because we are all excited we went shopping for a batting helmet and batting gloves. I think these may be the cutest and smallest little boy batting gloves I have ever seen. Now we just will need to get the spikes and bat and ... sign up!