Friday, June 22, 2012

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Sweet, sweet summer solstice!

We've always celebrated winter and summer solstice and I'm so glad that we do. Each has it's own special feel and meaning. Summer solstice to us is the start of our favorite season and fills me with memories of play, swimming, watermelon, flowers in bloom, green grass, bare feet and that sweet smell of summer.
Tonight we will celebrate, as we always have, with fun, togetherness, a fire, food and treats and dancing outside until the moon comes out!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Everyday Things

pool day again!

We got some really bad storms last night into the wee hours of the morning! I came out this morning to huge tree branches all over the yard and road in front of the house. I remember waking up a few times to loud thunder and lots of wind!

I was worried this morning we would get rained out and be stuck inside today so I was happy when the clouds cleared and the sun came out. The girls wanted to go back to the pool so off we went! We spent the entire morning there and only left because they were hungry for lunch. Next time I'll pack up some sandwiches!

Here we are again! It's nice for them to be able to swim and then play on the playground after before heading home!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Monday funday....

I have to be honest and say that Friday was a nightmare day with the girls. We opted to try skipping naps so they would go to bed at a reasonable time and it backfired. They fell asleep at 8 pm and then woke up refreshed at 11 only to take until 2 am to go back to sleep and of course they still awoke the next morning at 7:30 on the nose! We are exhausted with the sleep issues that have once again reared their ugly head back into our house.

The problem is the girls get exhausted, overly tired to the point they can't sleep and they fall apart at the seems ALL DAY LONG. We are going back to the old routine we did when they were babies and praying that as we stick to no tv, bath time, book time, snack time, bedtime it will work....this time around!

That aside we had a great weekend! I had a session Saturday morning bright and early. Saturday afternoon/evening we celebrated my Mom's 60th birthday with the whole family (minus one niece) and it was a blast! We always have a great time together and the kids keep us all entertained! Saturday night Royce and I had a couple friends over and Sunday we were tired but enjoyed father's day with breakfast and dinner.

Since last night the girls were up off and on all night I stayed in bed until they wouldn't allow it any longer. When I did get up I got the girls ready quickly and based on their meltdown factor decided getting them out and in water somewhere was my only chance for survival today (mothering survival tip #1: when they are crabby, stick them in water). We drove a couple minutes down the road to Armatage Park to play in the wading pool and at their super sweet playground. It was nice, the girls were excited and happy and it mixed up the day. On the way home we stopped at Lunds for some groceries and stuff to bbq tonight since we got rained out yesterday for Father's Day.

I'm digging deep for patience lately with the girls and trying to walk the tightrope of sanity and insanity. Some phases are harder than others but we're in the thick of it right now as we scramble to try and find a system that works, new ways to approach difficulties and better ways to mediate. My mantra today is "this too shall pass".....cuz if it doesn't......I'm going back to work full time!!!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day to my Dad who weather he realized he would be or not is still very much Dad to me in my 30's!

Happy Father's Day to Royce who has been since the minute the girls were born a wonderful and nurturing example of what a good Daddy is. Always a source of praise and esteem for his girls and so expressive with his love of them.

We love you Hun!

Friday, June 15, 2012

"not now"

Me: but you're supposed to be taking a nap in your beds
Rasa: Oh yea, I'm sorry, but it's not dark outside
Me: well no, naptimes typically happen during the day
Rasa: it is during the day
Me: yeah so you need to get in your beds and take a nap and stop singing lullaby's in your rocking chair
Rasa: but momma it's hard for me to take a nap. it makes me hot.....
Me: it makes you hot to take a nap?
Rasa: yeah it makes me hot to take a nap...hottie
Me: but we have a fan on and it's nice and cool in here and well, you're not wearing any clothes anyway
Rasa: I, I, I want to lullaby for my babies
Adia: but we're going fast
Me: Ok well it's time to get off the rocking chair now and go to sleep
Rasa: Well....not now...I'm rocking lullaby now
Me: you're rocking a lullaby right now? Basically we're not taking naps today
Rasa: Mom you wanna rock?
Me: um no that's ok

Giving naps up makes for a disastrous evening and an even later bedtime (go figure).....but this is turning into a daily struggle! Not sure how to proceed!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Adventures in babysitting....results

This morning Sam arrived about 15 minutes before I was planning on leaving. She and I sat and talked and the girls watched her and warmed up to her quickly. When it was time to go I gave them each a treat to distract them, kissed and hugged them and said goodbye. I left, no tears, no words, they just went about their business.

When I got home about two hours later Rasa was standing at the door smiling and waving hello. Sam said they were good, no issues, and she went on her way.

How could it be so easy?!!

everyday Things

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

adventures in babysitting....

So it's no secret that the girls have not been exposed to the world of babysitters. They've never even stayed overnight anywhere but where Royce and I were. We've had my parents babysit, both my Mom and Dad, alone and together and they've always really enjoyed themselves. We did have them across the street for a few hours with Jilly last summer so I could clean house (she threw them a pool party with Gabby! sooo sweet) but we've never had someone come over where we've left. It's not because I have a problem with that, at all. It's because they are extremely shy and we never wanted to put them through the stress of it all, or a babysitter for that matter!

Well, it's time. We're starting "school" classes in the fall where they will be alone with a class full of kids and a teacher for an hour once a week and so transitioning them to knowing we're leaving, and of course coming back is something we need right now. Most kids get dropped off by Mom and Dad at daycare during the week so they get lots of practice early on.

I've always been sensitive to Rasa and Adia's need for me and for security. I was not a shy child. I wasn't slow to warm or afraid to leave Momma but I understand it. Highly sensitive kids are built different. These same characteristics are helpful in their lives and can even keep them out of trouble later on because they think a while before they do and are cautious not to leap into things. Lets hope they keep some of that during their teenage years (PLEASE God!).

So today I asked the girls what they thought about, Sam, our neighbor's daughter, coming over for a couple hours to play with them. Rasa thought for a minute and said, "that would be ok, Momma". Adia burst into tears screaming, "I don't want to be babysat! I don't want Sam to come over!!" She carried on for a while begging for Grandpa instead but I kept it light and said, "no, Sam is going to come play for a little while. Mommy needs to be able to go and I'll be gone for a little bit and come home to play". After we went to Sam's to ask if she was interested the girls clammed up and wouldn't talk to her. We walked home and I told them how much fun it was going to be for them. Adia started crying again but seemed content after we talked about it some more. The fact is, she may not be happy about babysitters but she will accept the fact that they will come, she will be fine, and we will come home.

Wish us luck tomorrow! Better yet, wish Sam luck! She might really need it! And truthfully I might need it most. This is a big transition for us all, more independence and a time for change and growth. I'm not a Mom who tries to keep her children babies but knowing them so well, as attached as they are, I worry how they will be....well, because I'm just that way.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

my blueberry girls.....

When I found this book at the library I read through it and fell in love with it immediately. Sometimes I never know if the books I pick will be books the girls will like (they pick their own too) but we all love Blueberry Girl and we read it over and over everyday and have been for two weeks now. It's magical.

I couldn't have put the sentiment better had I written it myself for them.

I love every word of this book and it's so easy to read to them because I feel every word Neil Gaiman wrote:

"Ladies of light and ladies of darkness and ladies of never you mind,
this is a prayer for a blueberry girl.
First, may you ladies be kind.
Keep her from spindles and sleeps at sixteen,
let her stay waking and wise.
Nightmares at three or bad husbands at thirty,
these will not trouble her eyes.
Dull days at forty,
false friends at fifteen - let her have brave days and truth,
let her go places that we've never been,
trust and delight in her youth.
Ladies of grace and ladies of favor and ladies of merciful night,
this is a prayer for a blueberry girl.
Grant her your clearness of sight.
Words can be worrisome,
people complex,
motives and manners unclear.
Grant her the wisdom to choose her path right,
free from unkindness and fear.
Let her tell stories and dance in the rain,
somersault, tumble and run,
her joys must be high as her sorrows are deep.
Let her grow like a weed in the sun.
Ladies of paradox, ladies of measure, ladies of shadows that fall,
this is a prayer for a blueberry girl.
Words written clear on a wall.
Help her to help herself,
help her to stand,
help her to lose and to find.
Teach her we're only as big as our dreams.
Show her that fortune is blind.
Truth is a thing she must find for herself,
precious and rare as a pearl.
Give her all these and a little bit more:
Gifts for a blueberry girl."

the things they say...

Yesterday the girls were tackling me in the front yard...over and over and over! The two of them are strong enough to take me down and after they would, they'd tell me to "try and get up momma". I'd try only to have them pounce on me and take me out again. I was laying on the ground both girls sitting on top of me and Adia hops up and says, "Rasa come on! We gotta get a rope!" Rasa replies, "Yeah we gotta get a rope. Go get it!". I look up at Rasa and ask, "What do you need a rope for??" to which she replies, "We gotta tie you up!".

Huh?! What happens in a year when together I can't fight them off of me and they do in fact tie me up?!

Monday, June 11, 2012

princess picnic

Our neighbors across the street have been sweet to us since we moved in. They have two daughters, one in high school and the other in middle school (who keep begging to babysit), and the Mom (I'm SO embarressed I've forgotten her name!) works full time from her home office. She told me she loves watching the girls play outside all day and how much it reminds her of when her girls were little.

The other day I was out playing with the girls and our neighbors came walking over with two little pink princess dresses. They were their girls flower girl dresses when they were little and they've seen my girls out in the yard dressed in their princess dresses (which are nearly in shreds now!) prancing around. They thought instead of the dresses taking up space in their closets the girls would get enjoyment out of them. Oh man they have no idea! The second I brought them into the house the girls ripped their clothes off and insisted I put them in those dresses right away! Rasa danced in circles and said, "I can't wait for my Daddy to see me in my new dress!" They've been wearing them everyday! It was a very sweet and generous gesture of our new neighbors and I'm sure now seeing Rasa and Adia running around in those pink frilly dresses it reminds them even more of Nic and Sam when they were just about the size of my babes.

This afternoon one of the same neighbors, Doug, walked over as Rasa and Adia were tackling me in the front yard. He made a joke about trying to help save me from the girls abusing me and handed them a box of sidewalk chalk. The girls thanked him and took off to color up the driveway. What a welcomed surprise! I was able to get dinner started without so much as a peep from the girls.

Sometimes little gestures make such an impact. I go back and forth feeling lonely here and things like this not only make my day they make me feel welcome here and at home. It also reminds me how important it is to do nice things for people because as cliche as it may sound you just never know what someone is feeling or dealing with and a smile, a wave, even a small treat can really touch someones heart. I've been meaning to go over all night and thank them for their kindness but each time I think about it I tear up because it's so sweet what they've done it touched me so much. Tomorrow, I'll bake something tasty and thank them :)

So tonight, after spending literally the entire day outside, Royce barbecued us dinner and my girls, dressed in their new frocks, had a princess picnic.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Family fun....weekends rule!

Friday night Royce and I had a quiet night after the girls went to bed. We enjoyed a fire, some music and watched a movie.

Saturday morning we got up early because we were anxiously awaiting Royce's parents arrival!! I brought the girls grocery shopping and then we came home and got ready for Debi and Oly. We had a nice day outside visiting and catching up. The girls played in the yard and in their pool. I had to hurry off dowtown to work around dinner time. After I got home I brought the girls to get a treat and Royce built up another fire. At 10:30 pm after a day of the girls outside in the sun they were hot but not tired so I put them in a cold bath and off to bed.

Sunday morning the girls were up early so we hopped out of bed and went to breakfast at our new favorite little cafe in Edina. I packed up the swimsuits and towels and we hit up the wading pool down the road from the cafe. The girls HAD.A.BLAST! I've never seen them have so much fun EVER. Royce and I were having fun too because nothing is sweeter than seeing your kids have a blast. Needless to say we will be spending a lot of time at that pool and being that it's only five minutes from the house it's great! We spent a couple hours there before heading to pick up lunch to grill for Royce's family. Debi and Oly and Cassie, Royce's sister, came for lunch and we all hung out, grilled and visited all day long. The girls, total beat from the pool, slept most of the day. We spend the evening together unwinding (and sweating...92 degrees!) and hanging out.

I LOVE our weekends. I LOVE this area!! We have never had so many fun weekends as long as I can remember. We all love having company and hanging out. There is so much geared for families in the city and we fit in so much better there lol! We are really taking advantage of all there is to offer and enjoying every minute of it!

Friday, June 8, 2012

cutest little model there is

Rasa LOVES being my model when I need one. She always volunteers and always takes direction so well. I was playing with light this evening in the house and needed her help. She gave me a few cheesy smiles but my favorites are always when I ask her questions and it's just her natural state of wonderful.
XXOO Rasa Bea! You are SO SO SO pretty!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Adventure Day - Lake Harriet

The girls and I packed up the car with towels, lawn chairs, snacks, water and sunscreen and headed over to Lake Harriet this morning for a fun day in the sand. Lake Harriet is less than 9 miles from our house and I've been spending a lot of time there lately both for work and for fun. We ended up on the southbeach today which is a little beach in one of the busiest areas of the park. It was full of little kids and lots of nannies and Momma's. The girls stuck close to me at first afraid of the lake water after seeing a little bit of seaweed (it's been almost a year since they've been in a lake!) but after I went in with them at first they were fine and happily played building sandcastles and tossing mud. I enjoyed watching them play so gleefully in the water.

I'm slowly getting over my phobia of "city" lakes. I still MUCH prefer secluded up north lakes because they're so much cleaner but this is pretty ok and it's fun because how cool is it to have a beach in the heart of my favorite city!

Next week we'll hit up the north beach and have lunch at Bread & Pickel (it's fantastic local food at the Lake Harriet Pavilion).

This past week we've been out walking, playing at the best playgrounds, enjoying the sun, the water and our new area. Being so close to the city is awesome because there is SO much going on all the time and almost all of it is FREE! We certainly won't be bored this summer!

So if you want to come down, join us at the beach, one of the many splash pads and pools, eat the best ice cream, cupcakes and food and even watch a free concert or movie in the park we'd love to have you come along!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

the things they say...

We stopped at this tiny little old fashioned ice cream shoppe down the street from our house for a surprise treat for the girls. After we were finished Royce ran into the chinese food place next door to grab a take out menu. The girls sat on the table outside and peered into the window. The restaurant still had a little christmas tree up and a nativity scene (seriously people! It's JUNE!). Both girls were looking closely at it with their faces pressed against the window.

Rasa: Whoa there's a scary monster!

Adia: Oh a scary monster?!

Rasa: Yeah! And keeps trying to LOOK AT THE BABY!!!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

bittersweet weekend

We had a wild 11 year wedding anniversary weekend! One of my best friends, Amy, and her boyfriend, Emeric (couldn't love him more!) came over Friday night to celebrate with us. Amy was one of my beautiful bridesmaids 11 years ago! They brought champaign, flowers, firewood and lots of fun energy! We had a magnificent evening.

Saturday my parents came over after we put the girls down for their nap and babysat so Royce and I could go out, enjoy the beautiful day and each others company. My parents insisted we stay out past dark but after we had a wonderful late lunch and bloody mary's at Muddy Waters in Uptown, walked the Peace Garden and around Lake Harriet, shopped Linden Hill's and had dinner we were tired and ready to come home! It was a beautiful day, MUCH NEEDED and we thoroughly enjoyed being a couple without the stress of the kids and above all being spontaneous!! Thank you Nana and Grampa for babysitting and thank you Royce for the amazing day! I love you and still think you are the cutest and coolest guy I know.

Since we were up all night Friday night we were exhausted Saturday evening. I crashed early, Royce got the girls in bed and we all slept until 9:30! I woke up Sunday morning to a few missed calls and text messages and sadly it was because my sister was hurt pretty bad and in the hospital. She took a fall down the stairs in the middle of the night after she had woken up thirsty and went to grab a bottle of water downstairs in the kitchen. She ended up with a broken jaw (in three places) a chin split open and hurt knee. After she spent the night in the ER they moved her by ambulance to HCMC to have a specialist wire her jaw shut. She's doing well, wants to go home and will be ok. She's one of the toughest women I know (always has been) so this won't put her out for long but it's hard seeing loved ones hurt and wishing you could do more to make them better.

We love you Auntie Chrissy and are sending you healing vibes and warmest thoughts, every one of us.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Adia's ingenious that's for sure!

We are in another spurt of sleep terrorism in this house. Adia is the culprit. She's been coming up with every reason why she cannot go to bed or why she isn't tired. Her newest thing is she's trying to convince us that there are ghosts in her room....and monsters behind the curtains. We no longer close the curtains and now even with the nightlight in there we have to keep the hallway light on because otherwise "it's just too scary for me!". Part of it is that she's imaginative and I think it is in fact possible she believes these things to be true but the other part of me knows she's using it to hop the gate and crawl into our bed....which we spend a lot of time convincing her she's safe, there's no monsters or ghosts that live here (only beautiful people) and place her back in hers.....ten feet away from ours across the hall! We're teetering on believing her to be afraid and also knowing she loves to stay up all night with her antics!

The other night Royce and I were in our room and we kept hearing a beeping sound. Adia likes to play in my tool box and she had lifted my stud finder and stashed it in her bed! She was pushing the sides of it because it has a small red light that lights up when pushed and she was using it to light up a pile of books she was reading in bed! When Royce asked her what she was doing she replied in her munchkin voice matter-of-factly , "I'm just using my flashlight to read books quietly".

the things they say...

We were on a stroller walk and on the way back about a half a mile from our house the girls asked to get out and walk. They love holding hands and walking next to each other which I of course think it the CUTEST THING EVER especially because they do it simply because they like to. As they were walking I was behind them pushing the stroller and I hear the following:

Adia: Rasa, can dogs take cat naps?
Rasa: Bahahahahahahaha NOOOO!!!
Adia: bahahahahahahaha