Category Archives: Blogging About Blogging

A New Year

Hi again. Forget about me? I sure feel like some days I’ve forgotten about myself, but as long as everyone gets fed and to bed in clean pajamas I’ll consider most days a success.

We’ve been doing so much up in the mitten that I don’t even know where to start. This fall we did a lot (A LOT) of traveling. Nothing reminds me how much I dislike living in a grey, cold, snow like visiting somewhere that requires sunglasses instead of boots.

In September we drove to Niagara Falls in Canada (aye) with our friends and their kids.  Once you see the giant hole in the ground and take a few pictures there’s not much to do so we spent the rest of the weekend at the local vineyards because when in Canada, do as the Canadians do, aye?




In October, we took our adorable munchkin to New York City for my first trip to the Big Apple.  I was a ball of excitement and smiles because I hear so much about New York but never had the opportunity to go so when Angel’s Aunt and Uncle offered to take us I didn’t even have to think- YES YES YES!  I love my husband, kid, and dog, but if I went to NYC for the first time before I had them all I probably would have tried to move there.  Love that city but it is NOT conducive to strollers and toddlers who don’t understand that they can’t cross the street yet and you can’t carry them 80 blocks.  What an awesome way to spend our 4th wedding anniversary, though!




About a week after we got home from the East Coast, we decided to make sure that the Pacific Coast was still there.  So we up and went to San Diego for my best friend’s wedding!  I was the Maid of Honor and Lucas was the ring bearer and it was so much fun.  We stayed in a condo on the beach in Carlsbad and got to enjoy coffee on the porch in the sun and dip our toes into the ocean and put Lucas in shorts and remember all of the reasons why I really belong on the West Coast.  Angel had to walk down the side of the aisle with Lucas carrying a bag of M&Ms, feeding them to Lucas so he would walk down without freaking out.  I’m not sure he saw anything other than the candy that Daddy was carrying, which was perfect.  Erica got married on a beautiful golf course looking over the ocean and I was able to keep myself together ALL weekend leading up to it and all of the events and ceremony so that I could make sure she did what she needed to with a fluffed dress for photos and all.  Then naturally, as the DJ gave me the mic at the reception to give my speech I instantly started crying and couldn’t remember a single word of my memorized speech.  All I could think of was Wedding Crashers and the guys in there betting on the Maid of Honor crying for her speech.  Well, I totally did but all that I can say about it is that it all was genuine.

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This brings us to 2 days before our favorite Little Man’s second birthday.  And what do you give a kid when you’re in Southern California and he looooves Mickey Mouse?  Yeah, it was a tough one for us to figure out, too.  Luckily, it looks like we were able to guess correctly when we picked a trip to Disneyland:



Yeah, in that photo we’re waiting in line to get in and he’s that excited.  We’ll go ahead and accept our award for Parents of the Year now.

So we spent 2 days at Disneyland and California Adventure, including Lucas’ 2nd Birthday.  What an awesome thing to be able to do for your kid, seriously.  I’m not sure who had more fun.









For Christmas we spent 2 weeks in Colorado with my parents.  It was a long drive there and back, but it was nice to be able to see that sun and snow actually can coexist.  Who would have guessed?  Lucas got the hang of opening presents and still tells me that “Santa’s coming” so I think he sort of understood the concept this year.  He was excited to see Nana and Paws and meet his cousin “Witty” (William).  If it wasn’t for a bout of croup on Christmas Eve, it would have been the perfect trip.  But then what’s a family holiday without a trip to Urgent Care?  All in a day’s work.

Now we’re home for the next few weeks before another trip to the Caribbean.  Best way to spend the winter is not here, I always say.

On to another year for the Rivas Family!



Stop! Family Time!

I can’t believe that one short day after I vowed to keep up my blog I missed. But I swear to the internet that I posted yesterday in my head. Unfortunately, it looks like none of that actually made it to the WordPress app. My brain apologizes.

Happy Day 52:

I finished crafting my mantle. Disregard the wall color, soooo not my choice and clearly doesn’t match any decor in our house. Mmm…. Pea soup.

Happy Day 53:
A family selfie from the beach of Traverse City at sunset. Not pictured is Molly in my lap. We all made it up here and look forward to some awesome family time this weekend thanks to the surprise of my awesome husband for booking the hotel this weekend and planning our Michigan Wine Country getaway!


Enjoy your families this weekend everyone! And don’t forget to call your moms and dads and tell them sorry for throwing a fit when they took you to dinner on vacation. They swear, they thought you liked chicken.

Days 21 and 22

I was having too much fun enjoying myself yesterday to stop and blog. So here’s yesterday’s happy thing(s): a new haircut and another Special Wednesday with my 20 pound boyfriend at the children’s museum.





And for today’s happy thing, I just found this online and love it. It’s a really quick read by a humor mommy blogger as an answer to someone’s rather rude post to her regarding her body: A Letter To Anyone Unhappy With Their Body

It never hurts to have a reminder that we’re awesome just the way that we are.

Smile on, friends.

A Different Perspective

I’m 12 days into my 100 Happy Days and I have to say, I do feel better already.  Maybe it’s that the sun has finally decided to come out of hibernation, but I’m not going to be picky.  It serves it purpose because I’m spending most of my day looking for happy things that I can post about and trying to decide what happy thing I want to post about.  Even more importantly, it’s getting harder to decide which thing I want to write about.  So take that, winter blues.

But seriously though, winter can kiss the fattest part of my ass.

For day 12, I’ve decided that it’s going to be a new Monday tradition to take Lucas to see Daddy for lunch.  When we moved here I had all of these lofty plans about “we can come see you at lunch all of the time” and then when I have a screaming toddler, feet of snow, and reruns of Sex and the City on TV, I suddenly don’t have the desire to shower.  Much like finding my happiness in the next 100 days, I’m forcing myself to do things differently.  So Day 12, lunch with Daddy:

Lucas is running around on the floor at his feet

Lucas is running around on the floor at his feet

My champion sleeping toddler has been replaced with his evil twin Screw-Up-The-Schedule-Lucas.  This less desirable version of toddler has been waking up at 5am to talk to himself, going to sleep at 11pm, throwing fits out of exhaustion in the grocery store, and really giving his mommy a run for her money.  Is it appropriate to replace coffee in my mug with chardonnay and take him to the park?

photo 2

Some days my nerves survive on his cuteness alone.

My Week

Well, I’ve been sick for a little more than a week, and haven’t left the house very often as a result.  In fact, the last time that I did leave was on Easter and only to go to Urgent Care.  Yep, it’s been a great week and not really the memorable first Easter that I wanted to share with my little man.  Obviously, he didn’t know any different but that’s not the point.  Ugh.  Mom fail.

I still feel like crap, but at one point I had a fever, the dog was throwing up, and Angel was suffering from food poisoning while Lucas was screaming and coughing.  A family who shares everything.  That’s what we’ve become.

In odd news, I’m losing hair by the handful over here.  Seriously.  By.  The.  Handful.  Maybe I’m taking chemotherapy that I wasn’t aware of, because it’s scary the amount of hair that’s coming out of my head at the rate that it is.  I should be bald by the end of the month.  Secretly I’m hoping that it’s just the end of the drop in all of the crazy pregnancy stuff since they say that you stop losing hair when you’re pregnant because of the hormones and you lose it all after you have the baby.  I mean, it’s bad enough over here that even the house cleaner made a comment about how worried she was about the amount of hair I was losing.  Yeah.  I’m not kidding.

And speaking of the end of all of these crazy pregnancy things, I’m happy to report that I finally put myself on the scale and I’m under my pre-pregnancy weight.  Having never lifted a weight or started a diet.  Go me!  That doesn’t, however, mean that I don’t look like I’m carrying around a flotation device around my belly still and have boobs out to here.  Why doesn’t anyone tell you these things?  In my mom’s defense, she did try and I stupidly thought to myself “but I’ll be different” and I’m here to shout it to the blogging world: No.  You won’t.  What was flat will now be round, what was small will now stick out, and what was perky you will now trip over.  “But you’ll have this little baby that makes it all worth it” or strongly suggest surrogacy to anyone who asks- which they don’t but they totally should.

Do you boobs hang low? Do they wobble to and fro?

Can you tie them in a knot?  Can you tie them in a bow?

Can you throw them over your shoulder and then feed your son a 7 course meal that will only hold him over for 3 hours before he starts screaming for more because he doesn’t know how much of a job this is?

Do your boobs hang low?

And since I’m already talking about my boobs, I’m going to throw out into the world that my son now BITES and PINCHES.  Yep and yep.  It doesn’t matter if I yell at him, flick him in the mouth, stop feeding him, or call him names (yes, I have done these all).  Now I can tell when he’s about to and I look at him and say “don’t you even think about it!” and then he either smiles at me, or gets this devious look in his eyes, bites me, and then smiles while I’m yelling.  He knows exactly what he’s doing.  That little punk.  But my 6 month goal of breastfeeding is in serious jeopardy over here unless he stops immediately  because this is no longer enjoyable and I don’t want to hate my baby and we’re on that path when he bites me every few hours and then started pinching this afternoon.

As a result of being sick, I don’t have a ton of photos to share for my week, but I do have a few while I was feeling under the weather and before I was hit by the proverbial Mac Truck of sickness.  I’ll type morewhen I feel like I’m not knocking on death’s door.

At the Chicago Bulls game with the family

At the Chicago Bulls game with the family

The car ride home from Chicago.  Molly has decided that Lucas is okay and can stay in the family

The car ride home from Chicago. Once again, proof that dogs take on the personality of their owners.

Morning play time

Morning play time

Morning nap in our (still) unfurnished family room with his butt up in the air.  Sidenote: our new couches should be here the first week in may- FINALLY

Morning nap in our (still) unfurnished family room with his butt up in the air. Sidenote: our new couches should be here the first week in may- FINALLY

we're still working on sitting

we’re still working on sitting


Getting ready for Easter

Getting ready for Easter

Proof that there IS sun in Michigan.  Even if it was only for a day.  Angel took us to South Haven, which is a small beach town on Lake Michigan for the day.  We walked around the shops, had lunch, and spent some time soaking up the vitamin D that we so miss from Arizona

Proof that there IS sun in Michigan. Even if it was only for a day. Angel took us to South Haven, which is a small beach town on Lake Michigan for the day. We walked around the shops, had lunch, and spent some time soaking up the vitamin D that we so miss from Arizona

Baby's first Easter basket!

Baby’s first Easter basket!

Sick momma with her babies keeping her company on the couch

Sick Momma with her babies keeping her company on the couch

Look at all of these colors!

Look at all of these colors!

But MOM, are you SEEING these colors?!

But MOM, are you SEEING these colors?!

My little Easter bunny with his little Easter basket

My little Easter bunny with his little Easter basket (thanks for the outfit, Grandma!)

First Easter

First Easter

Angel got me a desk for my craft room and it's finally done!!  So here is my craft room in all of its crafty perfection

Angel got me a desk for my craft room and it’s finally done!! So here is my craft room in all of its crafty perfection

The first output from my new craft room: baby TOMS (which are shoes) for a friend of mine who is expecting any minute now!  Even made with custom tags for Liesel (what they will name her).  Between these and my diaper cakes, I should open an Etsy shop

The first output from my new craft room: baby TOMS (which are shoes) for a friend of mine who is expecting any minute now! Even made with custom tags for Liesel (what they will name her). Between these and my diaper cakes, I should open an Etsy shop

Happy Valentine’s Day

Just for the record, Lucas fell asleep an hour ago and I’ve spent the whole time trying to figure out how to use this new computer so that I could actually update my blog and not the 3 photos and 5 words that you all got a few days ago.  My last personal computer was purchased in 2002 and didn’t have wireless internet and “Windows Home” and the work computer that I had been using was rocking Windows XP and Microsoft Office 2007.  Now that I’m on Windows 8 with Office 2013, I feel like I’ve been driving a 1976 VW Beetle for years and Angel just handed me the keys to a Lexus with self parking capabilities.  I know this machine can do so much more then I’m giving it credit for, but I’m spending hours trying to figure out where the gas cap is.

So an hour later, I at least know how to edit my photos and add my little website tag to them, which is more then I had the other day after I spent 30 minutes in Photoshop trying to open a file.

Two days ago, I took my little pooper to our “new” house and we got the keys!


I was excited to talk to the homeowner because she was a stay at home mom who was apparently extremely involved in mom groups and I wanted to pick her brain about where these such groups meet.  A few minutes later, I learned that the group she was involved in was through her church and was a bible study with an elaborate day care that takes your kids for an hour or two while you’re in the study group.  That’s not quite what I had in mind as a “mom group” so I politely passed and decided that I would just Google my options as soon as I learn how to use the internet on this computer.

Yesterday I went back to the house with Pooper and we had a few ladies from La-Z-Boy come by to measure the living room and give us some options for a couch to replace the disgustingly dirty one that came with Angel when I acquired him.  Bachelor couch is not dog and baby friendly and we’ve been so impressed with the rocker from La-Z-Boy that we have in the nursery (or storage, whatever) that we decided to go see what they had.  I’m pretty sure that the ladies didn’t take us seriously, but that’s the theme for this crap hole that we’ve moved to.  Perhaps I’m just in the wrong parts of town (which is possible because I don’t know any better yet), but everyone looks at me and automatically assumes that I’m a struggling teen mom playing house.  Most of the time it doesn’t get to me, but some times I just can’t take the looks and whispers because Angel and I have worked really hard for what we have and the ability for me to comfortably be a stay at home mom.  But I digress.  So yesterday when the ladies were leaving the house, the one was trying to see how serious we were about purchasing a couch and asked what our budget was and immediately started talking to me about financing options.  When I said “I don’t think we’re interested in financing.  We would just pay cash.”  She was trying to suppress a laugh and then spent 15 minutes asking me how old I was without actually coming out to ask.  I finally said “I’m 28.” and she replies with a “Wow!  You look great!”  And you look old.  What’s your point?  If I wasn’t getting this kind of discriminating looks and comments everywhere I went here like I’m living way beyond my means for purchasing both spaghetti noodles and spaghetti sauce at the same time I may actually be offended by the way that the lady was acting.  But instead, I think I’m just (sadly) getting used to it since we’ve moved here.  I miss the area we lived in and friends that we had who were all in the same position.  I’ve never felt like I was in an elite income bracket until I moved here and it’s a really uncomfortable feeling.  And then I get mad for feeling uncomfortable for what I have because again, we’ve worked really hard!  So I just turn the other cheek and then try not to be snobby because I hate people like that, but it’s hard not to come across that way when the lady from La-Z-Boy is standing in my living room asking me how old I am and commenting on how nice the house is.  Listen, bitch, sell me a couch or get out of my house.  This feeling is really what I’m struggling the most with here and I hope it gets better when we move into the house which is supposed to be in a nice area full of families and stay at home moms.

In a lighter note, Lucas has been waking me up earlier and earlier and refusing to go back to sleep.  Going are the days of sleeping until 10 and feeding him and going back to sleep. This morning I was looking for the snooze button on my human alarm clock and spent 5 minutes pressing his forehead but he wouldn’t shut up and go back to sleep.  I’m going to have to take this back to the store.

So instead, I got up, made coffee, and dared to put Lucas in his Valentine’s Day outfit early.  I call this a “dare” because he’s been blowing out his diaper and staining his clothes nearly every day.  Angel and I assume this is a sign that we either forgot how to properly put on baby diapers, or Lucas is outgrowing them.  I’m guessing option 2, so we’re going to finish up what we have, and then finally move on from the newborn diapers.  In the mean time, here’s a photo of Lucas on his first Valentine’s Day (before he poops out of the outfit) while he lays on a changing pad without a cover because he pooped all over that and it’s in the washer.  At this point, a drop cloth would be more appropriate for my house.



Angel is taking the three of us to dinner tonight in Kalamazoo and I’ll be sure to tell you all about it tomorrow because I need more practice on this computer and because I don’t have much else to do while I’m living in temp housing.





<—– Look what I learned how to do!

History Repeats Itself

Hm…. Where to start?

First, my adorable baby apparently doesn’t want to be set down tonight, so I had to start this blog post 4 different times before I could actually get writing.  And now I write this

I’m sorry, what was I saying?

Yes, that I’ve had to start this post 5 times because I keep stopping to try to make Lucas fall asleep.

Yep, 6th time’s the charm….

Sometimes it takes 7 starts to a

I digress…. And I also think I have at least 4 minutes to collect my thoughts this time

Nope, sure didn’t.

Okay then, so this week I think I finally got into the groove of being a stay at home mom.

Aww, that’s cute.  There was a 20 minute pause between that last sentence and writing the rest of my blog because Lucas decided that he was hungry and I had to feed him.  So let’s talk about nursing for a minute, shall we?  It’s been going much better since we moved to Michigan.  Mostly because I’m lazy, partially because I don’t have the resources readily available that I did in Arizona, but really mostly because I’m lazy, Lucas has been nursing 100% of the time.  I haven’t gone near a pump or a bottle in about 2 weeks.  In fact, I have no milk in the fridge because I had to put it all in the freezer or throw it out (and cry) because he hasn’t had a bottle in so long.  Yay me!  (And maybe a little bit Lucas).  But I still call “BS” on books, people, and lactation specialists who make it sound like nursing feels like magical unicorns giving you hugs while you sip Mai Tais on the beach.  It’s more like dangling it in a tank of piranhas who haven’t eaten in a  week.  What I wouldn’t give to be able to strap off my boobs, throw them in his crib, and get a good night’s sleep!!

Yesterday I took a shower (because I promised Angel that I would) and took Lucas to Target to get a sewing machine and then to the fabric store to get fabric for burp cloths and blankets.  Why?  BECAUSE I’M BORED!  The fabric store was in the loveliest part of town: located between the Salvation Army and a couple of pawn shops (see: “Crap Castle”).  The trip was even complete with two moms screaming at each other that the other was a “ho” in front of their children.  Sweet, right? My mom apparently did the same thing when she moved a young family to California, so I have that in common with her, and that’s fine by me.

Sorry, another pause to read a Dr. Seuss favorite to Lucas and put him to bed, so don’t mind me if the next little bit of my blog post rhymes and has made up names that you’re not sure you’re pronouncing correctly but then it’s not like there’s an audience you’re reading to who knows any different, so feel free to skip a few pages to speed this bedtime up.

Anyway, what was I saying?  Something about history repeating itself and I unknowingly did what my mom did when she was in my position.


Now that Lucas is in bed, I promise to have the rest of this post won’t be as scatter-brained as I think I’ve proved that I now live my life by.

So anyway, I was sewing these burp cloths all day yesterday just because it seemed more productive then watching more murder mystery shows on daytime TV:

burp cloth

I’ve gotten into the habit of not waking up until 10am, mostly because I don’t work and Lucas still lets me sleep.  Last night I put Lucas to bed an hour late, so instead of eating at 7am and going back to sleep until 10, he ate at 8 and then daddy kept him awake while he was getting ready for work (grrrrrrr).  So right after daddy left for work, I snuck another man into my bed.  And by the grin on his face, he knew he didn’t belong there:


So after I decided that there was no sleeping through those giggles, I got out of bed to make coffee and run some errands but quickly changed those plans when I looked outside to find that my perfectly clean and snow free car looked like this this morning:


Angel was nice enough to clean off half of it when he left for work, but I secretly think he only did it to say “now you have no excuse for not changing out of sweat pants and leaving the house” but the joke it totally on him because I didn’t change out of sweats, and instead sat on the couch all morning with Lucas watching paternity test results on Maury:

watching tvLucas gets very into finding out if the ho is telling the truth or not.

Angel probably knew the car stunt wouldn’t guarantee him that both Lucas and I would bathe today, so he sent me a text message about 10am saying “for dinner tonight do you want to” and then I honestly didn’t read the rest before I answered “yes!”  I’m just glad he followed it up with “go to dinner in downtown Kalamazoo” and not “cook me a 7 course meal complete with lobster tail”  So by 5 o’clock this evening, I was so excited at the idea of putting on jeans and going on a date that I had Lucas fed, bathed, and dressed and Molly pottied and in her cage, and I was in clothes that were clean and my hair was curled.  Curled people!  I don’t think you understand how excited that means I was.

We dug out my car, drove out of our crap castle, and went into town to a nice European restaurant.  No idea what European food is?  It’s like heaven when it means that I didn’t have to cook it.  He even took me to grab a glass of wine before dinner where 2 ladies (one who works in OB) guessed that Lucas was either 2 weeks or 6 weeks old and were totally floored when we told them he was 3 months next week.  Then came the famous follow up question that I get every time I leave the house: “Was he a preemie?”  Nope, I fully baked my tiny baby.  The manager at the restaurant mentioned that we had a “very well behaved baby” which is great to hear since he was being exceptionally fussy tonight at dinner and we were in an establishment that probably only had high chairs because they were legally required to and not because anyone brings children there.  But “yeah, this one’s on the boob so he can pretty much go anywhere” (name that movie! *Sweet Home Alabama*).

When we got home, Angel and Lucas had a moment.  When the two of them start smiling at each other, I hardly care that the guy living above us is running in place to bad techno music while he washes laundry at 11pm.  I kid, I totally still care, but this is pretty adorable:

baby smiles

The first week of staying home was interesting.  I may be the only person in this town who doesn’t shop at Goodwill and can afford to wash my jeans on a regular basis, and I get people whispering to each other when I grocery shop at my local Wal-Mart (that is seriously my only grocery store option around here.  Fried food, anyone?) regarding my Coach diaper bag and clean hair.  9 days, 2 Kindle books, and 6 burp cloths later, I had a total melt down to Angel one evening about how I hated this place and he can’t move me out of here fast enough and I can’t stay in the house all day every day and I need to make friends.

To prove my point, I sent Angel a text message this afternoon that said “I just finished up sewing a baby blanket with matching burp cloth.  I’m about to start sewing a new bedding set for our bedroom if you don’t help find me friends stat”  He wrote back with a phone number and said “call this number immediately” for the phone number of a mom’s group leader.

Next week’s goal: adult interaction.  I don’t care if it takes mom groups, extreme shopping, or jail.  Mark my words that next week I’ll talk to someone who doesn’t speak 2 month old in a venue that requires me to put on pants.

Crazy going slowly am I.

Our Michigan Trip

I’ve been really bad about updating what’s been going on- I’m well aware.

So here’s a quick run down  of where I’ve been the last week and a half:

Right before Christmas, this lovely thing was posted in my front yard:

IMG_0432(insert “booooooo”s here).  But allow me to explain the sign real quick- our dream house is NOT for sale, just for rent.  Our realtor has been made clear that any calls she gets about sale she can immediately ignore because we aren’t willing to entertain any.  But since our realtor is only really posting our rental as a favor and it’s not something that she normally lists, she only has “For Sale” signs.  Thus, the sale-but-really-for-sale confusion in our lawn.

My parents ended up coming down to Phoenix for Christmas!  In the 10 years that I’ve lived here in Phoenix, I’ve never actually spent a Christmas here because I’ve always gone home.  This was going to be the first year that I wasn’t coming to Colorado and babies make a great excuse to both: 1) not travel if you don’t want to and 2) get everyone to travel to you.  So we bribed my parents with adorable baby photos such as these:

20121221-205537.jpg IMG_0438 IMG_0449 IMG_0490

… and they practically beat down our front door like any proud grandparents would.

So we PACKED our adorable Christmas tree full of presents- mostly for Lucas- and didn’t get out of bed on Christmas Day until about 10am.  I’m guessing that this is going to be both our first and our last Christmas morning that we’re going to be able to sleep in.  We took full advantage.

Angel guessed before Christmas that my gift to him under the tree was a Keurig machine, so when Lucas woke us up at 10, Angel rolls over and says to me: “I was thinking that I should just go open the Keurig so that we can make coffee before we open gifts.”  By this point I was laughing because I was thinking the exact same thing.  This is why we’re perfect for each other.

Naturally, our adorable baby got carried away from the tree with the largest pile of gifts that he neither opened, nor was aware of.  In fact, our little munchkin looked like this most of Christmas:


And yes, he’s wearing Christmas jammies which he was also unaware of.  But I’ll be able to show him these photos and explain it when he’s older.

So overall, we had a lazy, sleepy, first Christmas with our adorable little man and extremely proud grandparents:

IMG_0459 IMG_0462 IMG_0465 IMG_0468

So that takes us through Christmas.  My parents had to head home on the 26th, and the Rivas family loaded up and shipped our first car to Michigan:

IMG_0472 IMG_0469

So while I’m standing in the driveway holding the baby, watching the car get loaded onto the truck, and waiting for the realtor to come show the house, it took just about everything not to start sobbing.  So the car leaves, and I spend the rest of the day packing suitcases because we left to move Angel to Michigan the next day.

Traveling with a newborn?  Easy.  Schlepping all of the crap through the airport?  Oh. My. God.  Tack on a cross country move for Angel and we’re left with 4 big suitcases, 1 carry on suit case, 1 diaper bag, 1 backpack, 1 stroller, 1 stroller bag, 1 car seat, 1 car seat base, 1 tote bag, and I’m sure I’m forgetting some but I think I’m making my point clear.  Crap.  Lots of it.

We were hoping to be able to arrive straight into our 2 bedroom furnished apartment that we’re calling home until March, but that got the red light until January 8th, so we were moving into a teeny tiny hotel room.  With all of our crap.  And a tiny baby.

Side bar: hotel rooms are HORRIBLE with a baby.  Oh Lord, I can’t explain it, you’re just going to have to think back to having your kids in a hotel room if you’re a mom, or imagine trying to throw a formal dinner party for a litter of puppies in your garage and that’s about half of it.  We got 2 nights of 7 hours sleep bliss from Lucas, followed by our first 8 hour night (which is considered “sleeping through the night”) and then we threw him on a plane, packed him into a freezing hotel room, and by the end of the week I brought him home with the schedule of screaming his head  off every 2-3 hours.  All day, all night, doesn’t matter.  SCREAMING.  In public, in the car, in the hotel room, in a crib, laying on mommy, cuddling with daddy, he did not like it here or there, he did not like it anywhere.  He does not like green eggs and ham, he does not like them Sam I Am.  So declaring victory and then being sent back to the starting line has been rough.

But I digress.

So we’re in a hotel.  We go to look at the only 6 houses in a 30 minute radius of Angel’s work that are available to rent and will allow dogs.  6.  I’m moving from a city the size of Phoenix to a 30 minute radius of 6 rental properties.  The first 3 I was trying to keep an open mind while thinking in my head how I was going to live in an apartment for a few years with a baby and stroller and dog because these houses clearly aren’t going to work unless I plan on cooking meth in the basement as a side job.  We drive to a different town, go to lunch, and then see house number 4:  Winner, winner, chicken dinner.  The house has 4 bedrooms, tile and hardwood, upgraded carpet, a fireplace, a kitchen that I could cook in without having to disinfect with bleach, and A FENCED YARD.  Sounds so mundane, but apparently nobody in the midwest fences their yards.  They like their neighbors, I like my privacy (and my dog not to run away when I let her out to the bathroom).  So we jumped immediately.  And then we learned why the house was so drastically different from everything else we saw: 1) because the town was where families lived in the area, and 2) the owners are moving to Singapore for 3 years with work and then plan on moving back into the house.  The realtor tells us this and our reaction is: “Oooooooohhh, okay now it makes sense.”  Anyway, we apply and get the house.  We’ll be moving in February 11th.  I would show you a picture of the adorable place, but I think I was in a state of shock at finding a house that I could live in that I totally forgot.  I’ll have Angel take one when he goes back to Michigan tomorrow.

So we have a house, we’re struggling with a  baby in a hotel, we’re freezing our Arizona butts off:


We peace out of Michigan, drive the 2 hours to Chicago, and spend New Years with the Gerstner Family who spit out their first kid and moved home to Chicago 9 months ago.  There are multiple babies, we swap war stories, we cook, we drink, and we’re all yawning on the couch by 11pm on New Years Eve.

Enter: the reason why we’re doing all of this.  Angel starts his new job.  It sounds like he’s really going to like it, but more importantly I now get all of the Kashi cereal that I refuse to buy because it’s too expensive.

It’s time for the baby and I to come home and Angel to come with so I can schlep all of this crap back:


Lucas earns his wings when the flight attendants are all just eating him up and he’s being his adorable self and looking around while trying to eat his teeny tiny hand.  So the flight attendant comes back when Lucas falls asleep and gives us his wings that I pinned on his seat belt for the photo:


We land at 6pm and Angel turns around to head back tomorrow at 3.  Sad face.

Lucas started his new routine of evening screaming (thank you, hotel).  So I give him a GIANT bottle, put him in a bath, put him in clean jammies, read him a new Dr. Seuss book, and put him in his crib to scream it out.

5 minutes later he’s half sleeping, half fighting it, 2 minutes after that I’m going to make sure he’s still breathing because he has passed out.  Let’s see how long this will last.

But noteworthy- this is his first night in his crib and his first night spent in his adorable nursery that will be dismantled and moved in about 2 weeks.  Another sad face.

So there you have it.  That’s what I’ve been doing the last week and a half and now that you know, I fully expect you to forgive me for not writing while all of this was going on.

Random Acts of Kindness

Tomorrow is the 6th anniversary of my 21st birthday (don’t do the math).  There’s no reason that everyone shouldn’t feel as good tomorrow as I will, so I’m celebrating by performing one random act of kindness for every year I’ve been alive.

I ask everyone reading this to perform a random act of kindness and let me know via comments on my blog tomorrow what you did.

Get ready to get kind (don’t worry, it’s only for a day).

Garlic Chicken Stir Fry

Here’s what I made for dinner last night (HIGHLY recommended):

Prep: 25 minutes
Marinate: 30 minutes
Cook: 6 minutes
Makes 4 servings

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup water
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons cooking oil
10 green onions, sliced into 1 inch pieces
1 cup fresh mushrooms
12 garlic cloves, minced
1 can water chestnuts
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 cup cashews

1. Cut chicken into 1/2 inch pieces.  Marinate chicken in water, soy sauce, and vinegar for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.  Drain chicken, reserving marinade.  Stir cornstarch into marinade, set aside.
2. Pour oil into a wok.  Heat over medium-high heat.  Add green onion, mushrooms, and garlic to wok.  Cook and stir for 1 to 2 minutes or until tender.  Remove vegetables from wok.
3. Add chicken to wok.  Cook and stir for 2 to 3 minutes or until no longer pink.  Push chicken from center of wok.  Stir marinade mixture and pour into center of wok.  Cook and stir until thick and bubbly.  Push chicken to center of wok.  Return vegetables to wok.  Add water chestnuts, crushed red pepper, and cashews.  Cok and stir about 1 minute more or until heated through.  Serve with rice.