Fly on the Wall: Balancing Crazy & Awesome Days

Welcome to a Fly on the Wall group post. Today 8 bloggers are inviting you to catch a glimpse of what you’d see if you were a fly on the wall in our homes. Come on in and buzz around my house.

Buzz around, see what you think, then click on these links for a peek into some other homes:

Baking In A Tornado

Menopausal Mother

Searching for Sanity 

Spatulas on Parade  

A Little Piece of Peace

Never Ever Give Up Hope

Bookworm in the Kitchen

Here’s who you’ll be hearing from:

  • Me, Mama O.
  • Daddy O.
  • Big Sister, age 7
  • Little Brother, age 5

For more Fly Posts, you can see my Fly on the Wall PAGE!

Yikes! This is only the third time this year that I’ve been part of this blogging challenge.  A lot has been going on – major volunteering, launching my marketing business, but I did take some time to hang with my girls and see Boyz II Men and New Kids on the Block. Unfortunately, Paula Abdul wasn’t able to perform due to an injury.  My dear BFF (who I knew back when these bands were around) warned me before the concert that we may hear, “Old voices.”  I really didn’t know what she meant, so she went on, “You know, they may just sound old and different.”  Well…here’s what they looked like:

NKOTB

New Kids on the Block  rocking it in St. Paul, MN

NKOTB collage

Fireworks, lights, Joe getting up close & personal with the fans! They put on an entertaining show!

I didn’t think they sounded old.  Boyz II Men still had it too! It was a very fun night!

After that week, it’s been a balancing act of summer school, sports, work, and fun with family & friends.  All good things of course!

Fast forward to July 4th, and Daddy O had this to say:

“I feel unpatriotic drinking this beer.”

Molson biere

Some Expressions are Tough to Understand 

Me: I need to balance my checkbook. Big sister: What are you balancing it on?

Me: We’ll be carpooling today with our neighbors.  Big sister replies, “I hope the water’s warm.”  Hmm…there’s no pool in the car.

Summer Grumpiness

Big Sister: Adults almost always ruin my mood especially you Mom.

This is what I get for laying down the law during summer!  It’s funny because her comment reminds me of what they said last summer. I wrote about it in “You Might be Home with your Kids for Summer if…”

I was talking to Little Brother about getting along with friends, after hearing that he was name-calling. He went on to say, “those darn friends mess everything up sometimes.”  For being five, he sure can sound like a grumpy old man sometimes!

Crazy Little Brother

Little Brother kept saying “subspicious” for several weeks.

Little Brother describing his two recess times at school: I play Ningajo in the morning and monster in the afternoon.

We ended up finding a love seat and two chairs for our living room. Once they were delivered, Little Brother referred to it as a “love couch.”

While helping with chores, I discovered that Little Brother loves to scrub with the toilet brush. “It’s kind of like stirring a big soup,” he said. Stir on, I say!

Me to Little Brother: Stop being crazy!
Big Sister explains: He was born crazy, mom.

Little Brother was sitting on my lap, and asked where my heart was. He guessed, “between those Rocky Mountains?” Yes, referring to my boobs! Ahh! Previously, he told us that, “boobs are enjoyable.” The gray hairs are coming already because of this kid!

Awesome has a New Meaning

Me at dinnertime: My day was productive.
Kids: What does that mean?
Little Brother: Like awesome?
Me: Yes, exactly!

I hope you all have an awesome rest of July! Cheers, my dear readers.

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My Morning Brew Makes Me Smile

I took this picture yesterday morning when I was enjoying my green tea. Coffee came later in the morning. Caffeine is a good thing.

Go Mama O coffee mug 2017

My Mother’s Day present

Isn’t this the best mug?

It makes me smile for several reasons:

  1. My seven year old mini-me drew it.
  2. It’s either a younger me or her self-portrait
  3. I emailed the gift idea to my husband prior to Mother’s Day.
  4. He “surprised me” with it.
  5. I accidentally opened the box it shipped in because I’m usually the only one who does online shopping. Oops – surprise!

Here’s to hoping you’re drinking your own favorite beverage from a mug that is as meaningful and fun as mine.  Cheers!

Family Vacation Pictures: The Good, the Bad, and Mostly Silly

Hi ya! I was scrolling through some pictures from our road trip out to Washington D.C., and I couldn’t help but make some collages of our many attempts to get a nice family picture. It was a beautiful spring day on the Mall. While we missed the main cherry blossoms, it was still a lovely temperature, which was much, much nicer than the spring we’ve been having in Wisconsin. My kids were having more fun being silly for pictures I was trying to take to mark the occasion: their first trip to D.C.

Here’s what I could capture:

Go Mama O. family vacation silly pics 2017

Top: Goofy faces in from of the Washington Memorial, and cuddling her water bottle at the Lincoln Memorial. Bottom: On the road! Daddy O. isn’t so sure about this trip in this picture (ha ha). 

Go Mama O family vacation 2017.png

More family picture attempts that day. That’s my annoyed face in the lower right.

The one on the top left is one of the last pictures of the day. We quick grabbed some ice cream and shakes from an ice cream truck because it was hot and we were all tired from a day of walking.  If my son had worn sunglasses, it might be almost passable.  At least we are all in the picture, unlike the one at the Lincoln Memorial, where my son is hiding behind Daddy O. (riding on his back). I also like the one on the top right, where my daughter looks confused and my son is sort of winking.

At any rate, these collages are fun.  Much like any family vacation in its entirety, they are not perfect by any means. There are good times, bad times, and down right ugly times as kids (and adults) get tired, impatient, and sick of being in the car for so long. We were silly. We did laugh and have fun, and we did it all together, making memories along the way.  These pictures are reminders of all that!

Cheers to family pictures of all kinds!

More stories about our trip will be coming.

Sort of #SilentSunday

I would normally stick with the theme #SilentSunday, but I have been so absent from my little blog that I feel obligated to write something!

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I setup a wide variety of paper, stamps, heart punches, and other craft items for the kids.  They went CRAZY making pictures and cards. While I wasn’t thrilled with the mess (or using blank cards as “picture paper,” I stepped back a bit after a few days and just enjoyed their creations that were made with love.

I believe my five year old made most of these. They are pretty sweet.

valentines

A whole lotta love went into these masterpieces

After all of their card-making, the kids insisted that we make cards for them, and so Daddy O. and I did.  It’s becoming a tradition each year, as I shared in this Fly on the Wall post from two years ago now.  Daddy O. broke out the Spirograph and even made me a card. It was pretty sweet.

So cheers everyone! I hope you felt the love this past week as much as I did!

2017 Resolutions – With a Little Help from my Friends

Hello 2017!

WordPress just told me that it’s been 20 days since my last post. GAHH! Where has the time gone?! Soon I’ll be telling you about it on my Fly on the Wall post next week.

I’ve been thinking a lot about resolutions and goals. Each year is an opportunity to take stock of that last year and articulate ways to improve, to be a better parent, wife, employee, and person in general.

While I talked about Less Hurry, Less Worry last January (and yes, I still need to follow my own advice), I have another part of my resolutions for this year: with a little help from my friends. 

I heard this Beatles song just earlier this week, as my son watched an episode of Beat Bugs on Netflix. If you haven’t checked it out, you should – it’s cute, and we could all use tolerable kid’s shows, right?!

Anyway, these adorable Beat Bugs sang With a Little Help from my Friends on this particular episode, and it struck me how fitting this song was for the day.  I had enjoyed a much needed phone call with a best friend who lives several states away. It was so wonderful to connect with her and share what was going on in our lives. We have known each other since elementary school, so some things can just be left unsaid when we talk, as we have such a beautiful history together. We totally understand what we’re going through as the “default, do-it-all parents” of younger children.

It dawned on me that I need calls like this more often! I need help from my friends to stick to my goals and resolutions in 2017 and beyond! While I often like to be independent and just “deal with it” on my own, that strategy doesn’t make me feel better. It’s okay to reach out and bend a friend’s ear for awhile. Social media can’t be a substitute for a real, live phone call or face to face meeting.

With support from my friends in more phone calls & get togethers, I hope to work on these resolutions:

  • Be less judgmental
  • Complain less
  • Be more patient, especially in the mornings (a carry over from Less Hurry, Less Worry)
  • Floss more (I say this every year!)
  • Eat less meat

I hope to have more updates on how I am doing on these to keep myself accountable both on my blog AND with my friends.

What are you working on for 2017? Are friends a key part of making your resolutions happen?