Fly on the Wall: Dirty Beans

Welcome to a Fly on the Wall group post. Today 14 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.


This past month just flew by with major things happening in our house – my daughter starting 4K, me starting my own all natural foods direct sales business, and my son’s 3rd birthday!  Lots of great blogging material in the queue, so come back to read all about it someday!

Dinnertime Conversations

One of our favorite activities to do on Wednesdays is venture to the Farmer’s market.  I bought some beans and made them for dinner.  Little bro said, “These beans are dirty.” He then took a few to the bathroom sink to rinse them off.  I tried explaining, “It’s seasoning, not dirt!.”  Oh well…at least he ate them!

Summertime Moments

We had the chance to test out a family member’s tag-along bike (it’s a kid’s bike attached to an adult bike) one weekend.  Big sister did awesome on it!  While we were riding she commented, “Mom, your dream that you had as a little girl came true.” I responded, “Huh?” She continued, “The dream of riding on a bike for two people.” This triggered my memory, “Oh yeah,” I said, “I guess you are right.”

As an adult I told Daddy O. that I dreamed of riding on a tandem bike together as an older couple (after seeing tandem bikers while biking/traveling in Switzerland). Here I was riding with a tag-along bike with my daughter, which I suppose was just as good, if not better because of her excitement. Dreams DO come true, though sometimes they materialize in different ways.

One hot day we made chocolate pudding pops. Big sister exclaimed, “This is the best day EVER!”  It is truly the little things in life that count, right?!

Learning New Health Terms

Daddy O: I think little brother has athlete’s foot.

Big sister: One time I had an athlete foot. And I pulled off the athlete.

Daddy O: That’s not exactly what it means.

Little brother: I have athlete’s foot.

Big sister: One time I peel off athlete.

Daddy O: Athletes are people who play sports. You don’t peel them off. Athletes sometimes get it from playing sports.

Big sister (persistent): Mom, I had a lot of athletes. I peeled them off.

Off to School

I wrote more about my musings on my daughter going off to 4 year old kindergarten here. Here’s a picture from her 1st day:

Big sister waving goodbye on her 1st day of school. Sniff. Sniff.

Big sister waving goodbye on her 1st day of school. Sniff. Sniff.

Her comments after morning one of school: Mom, some kids were arguing at school.  I wasn’t arguing.

Me: What did you do sweetie?

Big sister: We ate cheezie weezies for snack (the most important detail I guess).

My son’s reaction after big sister got on the school bus was, “Where’s my sister?” Yeah bud, it IS different around the house without her. Then later he told me, “When I get big I’m going to ride the school bus.”

Getting ready for school went really well the first few days, especially wonderful because big sister isn’t always a morning person.  That has since faded, much to my dismay. Eating and picking out clothes are the longest activities! I try to give suggestions, like putting leggings under a skirt to stay warmer, but my daughter told me, “Mom, you’re trying to dress me weirdly.” Oh man…I’m sure I’ll be hearing that one again!

Since starting school, I think big sister has begun to appreciate afternoons at home and weekends more. She remarked, “Quiet. I love quiet. I hate it when it’s loud.”  This IS a new one that I hope is adopted more often in our house!

Old House

We do live in an older home, but have no immediate plans to move.  Some family members have recently moved, so of course, big sister wants to move too.

Big sister: I don’t like our old house.

Me: Well, there are a lot of things Mom and Dad like about our house. Why don’t you like it?

Big sister: The doors. I want pink doors.

Little brother: I want the door to be green.

Daddy O: When you have your own house you can have whatever color door you want.

Click on these links for a peek into some other homes with various colored doors:                           Baking In A Tornado                                The Rowdy Baker                                Just A Little Nutty                                         The Momisodes                       Spatulas on Parade                               The Sadder But Wiser Girl                          Follow me home . . .                  Stacy Sews and Schools                             Menopausal Mother                                     Dinosaur Superhero Mommy                           Juicebox Confession                         Someone Else’s Genius                               Battered Hope

So Excited!

I’ve been excited lately, planning and prepping for my daughter’s fourth birthday party.  And thanks to Zumba class yesterday, I have some songs in my head.  Sing it Tina.

Another happy song –

One more song that we all had fun dancing to at Zumba (that is a little more current).

As you may have noticed from the songs above, I’ve been really happy, high energy, and excited.  I celebrated a birthday (not one of any major milestone), and LOVED that Daddy O. took a half day to prepare one of our favorite meals – lemon / ginger shrimp & asparagus pasta.  The kids and him made peanut butter frosting together with way too much of their saliva in it to share the final peanut butter frosted brownies with anyone else (and I’m okay with NOT sharing those – yum).  Most of all, I loved seeing my kids excitement for my birthday: seeing their little faces glow as they sang happy birthday, gave me big hugs and kisses, and even when my daughter tried guessing my age (her first guess was 50….luckily I was not phased by this, as she can really only count to 20).

Having had such a wonderful birthday myself, when I was really concentrating on planning for my daughter’s birthday all month long, I am very excited to just wrap up the final details, do some cooking and baking, and celebrate how far my daughter has come in four years with our family.

As I mentioned in a previous post called Separation Celebration, it is so rewarding to see and experience your child coming into his or her own.

My firstborn is growing up for sure!

She is loving preschool, no longer growls at strangers (though we’re still working on exchanging some pleasantries), is a fish in her swimming class, and has taken to singing and enjoying our dance parties.  I couldn’t be prouder, and am excited to see her grow and learn more to prepare for 4K next fall.

This parenting gig DOES get easier, and I’ve been so happy to move beyond some of the potty training horror stories, and other toddler drama, and simply have fun with my kids.  Then I remember that my son is only two, so I’ll have more toddler drama in store just when I least expect it.

Tonight on a date night (reason to be happy #1001), I’ll raise a glass with Daddy O. to a fun party this weekend and to more joys of parenting ahead.  Cheers & Happy Friday!


Forget Getting Another Cat!

Having grown up with a cat after my sister convinced my parents that we needed one with the iconic line, “But there’s an aching in my heart that only a cat would fill,” we became proud cat owners more than eight years ago.  She is a tough, Pittsburgh alley cat, sired by a neighbor’s cat named Fat Cat.  Isn’t she pretty?

black tabby cat named Sumo

Our kitten named Sumo (about a year old)

Sumo - always ready to eat

Sumo – always ready to eat. Here she is at Christmas 2007

Before having children, I often thought about getting another cat, a playmate and friend for dear Sumo Kitty.  (Her name by the way, was a self-fulfilling prophecy, as she was over 17 lbs at her last check-up.  Due to food rationing, she has lost some weight, but is still one big kitty!)  Like many cats, she is aloof & independent and will come to you only when it is convenient for her.  She’ll snuggle with us when we’re on the couch and in bed, but there’s not a lot more physical contact beyond that.  So I though getting another cat would increase Sumo’s activity level, leading to weight loss, while fulfilling my desire for a snugly, sweet kitty.  I enjoyed looking at cats available at local shelters online; there always are so many cats.  A colleague at the time would circulate emails of cats needing homes, and I would briefly entertain the idea.

Ultimately, the second cat was not meant to be, and I am completely over it!  It would be difficult to match Sumo’s personality, and maybe she IS a single cat home kind of girl.  Plus it is really difficult to find an agreeable, snugly cat that I had wanted.  Finally, after having kids, our cat really does come last in the pecking order.  I’m so exhausted after taking care of everyone else that I don’t have much patience – nor time – for a whining cat begging for food. (Okay – that’s a bit dramatic, but you get my drift.)

Little did I know that my two-year-old son would be the “second cat” that I had longed for all these years.  Lately he’s been sitting by me & snuggling whenever we watch a show.  The first time he sat with me for almost an entire Tinkerbell movie I thought it was a fluke. But it’s happened again and again, so I know it’s just his mama’s boy, sweet nature.  Who knew that after all these years, I just needed to have children to snuggle, hug, and kiss (to truly fill the aching in my heart, as my sister once said)?!

How do you feel about having pets AND kids?  Who gives you better snuggle time – kids or pets?

Meet Mama O

I’m a marketer turned 24/7 mom after quitting my job in February to leave behind a chaotic, go-go-go lifestyle.  Caring for my daughter and son (spaced 22 months apart) has been far from restful, though I have thoroughly cherished many sweet moments with them and my husband.  Life has slowed down a bit; I notice the little things around my house, yard, and neighborhood.   My world seems to have grown a bit smaller – just more focused on our own little home life.

As my son approaches his first birthday, I feel like I need a change – some more intellectual stimulation, adult interaction, and more reasons to get up and go (aka fix my hair, wear makeup and get out of workout clothes. Though I secretly wish to be discovered looking the part of a disheveled mom, so I can be on TLC’s What Not to Wear).  I’m starting to look for work outside of the home, hoping to balance being a mom, wife, and professional at the same time.

Check out my blog to see how I try to have it all, and share your own story too.