Wednesday, June 26, 2013

My Fitness Pal, Finally.

OMG.  It has finally happened.  I am finally so sick of being fat that I am going to start counting calories with My Fitness Pal tomorrow.  That's the app Ben has used to lose 20+ pounds, and it tracks both my calories and my workouts-- the more I exercise, the more I can eat.  I have been avoiding counting my calories because I am breast feeding and fondly remembering back in the day when I was 28 breast feeding Harry and watching the pounds fall off even though I ate more nursing him than when I was pregnant with him.  But, alas, I am now 35 with the slow, grumpy metabolism to prove it.

So.  Weight loss.  I want to do it.  Maybe more than I want to eat my face off.  We shall see.

I gained 35 with Dorothy, but I was 15 pounds heavier than usual when I got pregnant (because I had a 9-month old when I got pregnant, and the pounds weren't pouring off nursing him, either).  I lost 20 pounds right away, but since then?  Nothing. Well, 2-3 pounds, I guess. (Although I am eating like CRAZY and not gaining weight, so the breast feeding must be doing something).

Anyway, what I am trying to say is I want to lose 27 pounds.

When I lose 27 pounds I am going to spend a disgusting amount of money on new clothes and coats.  Lululemon and Anthropologie are screaming my name. Eye on the prize, friends-- hoping it distracts me from the cookies.

Since I am starting tomorrow, tonight means spicy cheese dip and beer in front of Big Brother, natch.

How about a good old fashioned phone dump?  Because I have been working really hard on the online class I am developing (I am getting paid through January to develop that class instead of teaching, which is freaking fantastic for the nursing on demand but also a lot harder than teaching, but I can do it all from the comfort of my couch, but holy shit it's a ton of work).

She's so sweet and salmon colored
 Ants on a log blew Cooper's mind.  Best snack ever.  And yes, we keep our house so cold that he wears winter jammies.
 Moments after I took this picture, I was holding Dorothy on my lap, and she became a shit volcano.  All over herself (up to her head-- had to take a bath), all over the couch, all over me (had to take a shower).  I was so bummed that the big kids were gone because they would have been delighted.  As it was, Cooper couldn't even go get the wipes for me because the bathroom door was shut (never trust that baby man around an open bathroom).
 She hangs with me while I work on my online class.  I am like a 24/7 buffet.
 Harrison: always accessorized.  He is taking a learning with Legos class every morning at his school where it sounds like he and all his friends just build zombie movie sets.  Not sure about the learning part.
 Got sick of hearing Jack complain about riding his bike up hill on our walks, so we started pushing him in the stroller while I wear Dorothy.  Comically large, right?
 Jack is having his first drop-off playdate tomorrow, and he went shopping for lunch today.  Hot dogs, peppers, chicken noodle soup, and donuts.  Okay then.
 If she could talk, she would tell me that this is totally unsafe.
 Seriously.  Couldn't you just eat her up?
 She sort of looks like Popeye here.
 Took H and J to see this on Friday-- adorable all around.
 Pool time.  Of course.

Friday, June 21, 2013


Cooper and Dorothy slept until 8 this morning.  They are my new favorites.

I was dreading summer because all the kids! home all day! with no classes or camps!  But we are a week in, and it's been awesome. 

The big boys are outside about 6 hours a day. 

We start every morning with swim lessons and hit the pool again after nap.  Harry has baseball 2 nights a week (Ben coaches the team), and the other nights, I take the kids to the baseball field at school so we can practice batting and catching.  Jack starts tee ball on Saturdays (Ben coaches), and Harry starts a Broadway theater class.

We've been taking a family walk (babies in the double, big boys on their bikes) every morning to exercise, and Ben and I end every night with a movie on the couch or a fire in the back yard.

Did I mention both of us are home all day?  Because I could not be having this much fun if I were on my own with everyone all day.  Holy shit.

Ben teaches one day a week, and I was LIVING for the moment he got home (at 3:30, BTW, so it's not like even a whole alone day).  The kids and I had been in the backyard since Cooper woke up from nap, and we played SO MANY GAMES.  But even that is a lovely problem to have, right?

Today we sign up for the summer library reading program (if Harry can tear himself away from reading books on his birthday iPad-- I know how he feels-- my summer reading has taken a nosedive since I decided to stop spending $50 a week on iBooks) and I need to send an email.  THOSE ARE ALL OF MY PLANS.

Viva la summer!
He kind of looks like Bernie from Weekend at Bernie's

At lunch before Harry's 7 year check up, which was totally perfunctory, exactly how I hope doctors appointments are for the rest of his life.

Nursing.  Babies are awesome, especially this one.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


Cooper took care of the leftover birthday cake. Phew!

He climbed up on a chair after seeing me climb up on a chair to clean out a tall cabinet.  And while I was on that chair with my back to him, he raided the cake.  AND COVERED IT BACK UP WHEN HE WAS DONE.  I love that kid.  (He dragged the chair over and got a fork-- he is such a good planner).

This is him kissing his favorite book:
I had to take my phone to the Apple store this morning, and the boys were so moderately well behaved that I said yes when they nicely asked for Oreo shakes from Potbelly, mainly because Dorothy was screaming for food, and it seemed like a perfect place to feed her.  Unfortunately, I didn't really have 8.5 extra minutes because we had to rush home, throw on swim suits and book it to the pool. I BARELY stopped the car all the way before I let the boys out and took the babies to park.
We played outside for a couple of hours this afternoon between baby naps (SIMULNAPS!  Dorothy in the swing and not her crib, but I'll take it!) and Ben's blessed arrival home from work.  Not only did Dorothy love sitting up (not really-- she was practically lying flat despite how this picture looks) in her BOB, but she also really seemed to dig being in the backyard-- the flowers, the breeze, the birds.  She was a happy little clam for 45 raspberry-blowing minutes.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Bowling Birthday, and Dorothy is 3 Months Old Today

I will never, ever complain about the cost of a Pump It Up or Little Gym or even Chuck E. Cheese birthday party again. Because that extra 2-250-ish hundred dollars? Is what's keeping those damn kids happy and entertained.  Without dedicated party staff, the kids ran amok and the party room looked sad because we didn't know we had to bring stuff like cute plates and balloons.  When the LG says all you need is a cake and a camera, they are setting you up to FAIL when you try to only bring those same two things to an inferior venue.

Harry and Jack loved it, though. 
And at the end of the day, that's all that matters.
Dorothy didn't mind either.
Bumpers made Jack a pretty OK bowler.
I didn't want to post any pictures of other kids, so all I have is Harry and Jack before the party started.
I should have brought juice boxes because all the bowling alley had to drink was soda.  Jack has never had soda before (Harry has had Sierra Mist a few times), and orange Fanta is the best thing he's ever tasted.   One of the snowflakes needed water because he was explicitly told that he could not have soda by a parent worried about dropping him at the bowling alley. The kids got super bored (because we didn't bring anything else for them to do because we thought they bowling alley would make things fun for kids because we have only had parties at party places for kids) so we supplemented the pizza we ordered with fried bar food.  It was a hit.

Soda.  And the commemorative pin with everybody's names on it that Harry got to take home.
This morning, Dorothy's swing broke, and Ben had to make an emergency run to Target for a new one.  Because she needed one that would plug in, play music, swing two ways and woo her with a mobile, Ben had to buy the Snugamonkey for $175 which pissed us both off.  Our FP Rain Forest swing has been with us for 7 years, and Dorothy is the only baby who has ever liked it-- she needs it, in fact, to take a nap, which is why Ben had to immediately go get a new one.  It took an hour to put together.
And in that time, I decided to feed the kids lunch outside.  Do you LOVE Jack's outfit, or what?
She really liked the Snugamonkey.  Unfortunately/fortunately on our way to the party, we were going to drop the old swing at Goodwill.  Ben was putting it in the van when he noticed that a cord in the back was unplugged (this, after we both tried EVERYTHING to make the swing work for at least half an hour that we didn't really have).  He plugged the cord in, and voila!  The old swing swung again.  SO, we took the Cadillac of swings back to Target, and Dorothy is back in the used Camry of swings.  I was kind of bummed about it, but then I thought of a million more fun things to buy for $175.
Feeding the kids outside?  Genius.
I love summer!  Baby legs!
3 months old today
She would NOT smile today.
Cooper did not go to the party-- we could not even imagine chasing him around in addition to trying to keep the damn kids inside, out of the gameroom, and happy (and we totally failed at this because one of the little girls ended up crying that she wanted to go home under the table).  He did, though, spend a long time trying to make this dinosaur take his pacifier.
That's it-- the big 0-7 is over, and so is birthday season.  We are off the hook until September, which means it's time to enjoy summer!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Happiest of birthdays, special-est of snowflakes

Let's start with THE LAST DAY OF SCHOOL, which was the day before Harry's actual birthday, or as we also like to call it, Thursday. ! FINALLY!

Harry captioned this sign himself
Jack also had his last day of 4K
Jack wanted to hold Dorothy, but I gave her to Harry

What a difference a baby makes.

While Harry was doing very important end of school things like washing desks and floors (WTF?), Jack's class totally copped out on their agreement to babysit my child one more day and had a family! fun! park! field! trip!

Dorothy liked it
 Cooper was THRILLED to have a juice box and sit at the table like a big boy.  Ben LOVED taking Jack to the park bathroom 3 times (not pictured).

Last year, I had summer school on the last day of school, so I missed the fanfare that accompanies pick up.  This year, I was supposed to be getting my June massage, but Ben convinced me to cancel because he said the music, dancing, and bubbles at pick up were too cute to miss.

I didn't put 2 and 2 together and changed into pool wear before we headed across the street.  So there I was in my best muumuu in front of EVERY DAMN PERSON I HAVE EVER MET.

Harrison was the first kid out of the building!  And his prim little teacher was DANCING.

We stopped on the way home for a quick pic next to the door

And a close-up of Harry's very important badge:
We celebrated with a quick trip to the pool after school (hence the muumuu and swimsuit and Jack's get up)

Ben and I could waste no time moping about our baby being a second grader, though, because he woke up 7 today, so we got to feel sentimental about that instead.  I stayed up late last night baking and frosting his cake for today's breakfast and preparing a fleet of Star Wars cupcakes for tomorrow's bowling party. Today was ALL ABOUT HARRY,  Still is because we are heading outside to sit by a backyard fire and make s'mores now that all the little kids (including a really pissed off Jack) have gone to bed.  But I am getting ahead of myself.
**** Senseless Baby Picture Interlude****
Here's Dorothy in yesterday's pool clothes:
And after a Cooper drive-by in the laundry room:
The special snowflake woke up to gifts and birthday cake for breakfast:

Then we ran around like idiots because the kids slept in until almost 7, and we wanted to be on the road for the Milwaukee zoo by 7:30.  Instead, we were in the car by 7:51, and Ben had to make 10,000 stops before we were actually on the road, but still even with horrible traffic and ridiculous road construction, we were at the zoo by 9:30.

Dorothy looked super cute in her sun dress and sweater, and I snapped this pic after feeding her and changing a poopy diaper but before I loaded her into the Moby where only an occasional hand would be visible for pretty much the rest of the day-- awesome sun protection.
As always, the zoo was a delight.  I really like that zoo-- large enough to have some cool animals like zebras, elephants, and hippos, but small enough to be doable in 3 hours with 4 small kids including a lunch stop.  We took dorky family pictures in front of the green screen before we went in, and I can't find them, but when I do, I will blog them.

They were a lot like this only with Ben and cheesier backdrops:
Cooper LOVED the zoo.  Loved it.  He didn't so much like riding in the wagon, although it was the only time he got to have his pacifier, so he tolerated it.  He loved saying hi ("HAH") to animals and people.  His favorite, besides screaming HAH BIRDS, was running up to children imprisoned in strollers and waving right in their faces.  He went running at a small cheetah behind the glass in the big cats exhibit, and when the cheetah responded by rolling toward the glass and smacking it with his paws, Cooper screamed "I DID IT!"  We told him the cat was a cheetah, and he yelled "HAH CHEEZIT!" It was adorable.

He really, really got a kick out of the sting ray exhibit where for $2 and a trip to the handwashing station, you could lean your hands in a pool and touch them.
I was grossed out (natch), and there were sharks in the water also (really small sharks), so Jack was out, too, because he is scared of sharks.  He pulled me into the hallway to ask if they could eat through the tank.

Sting rays are slimy

You know how I love family pictures with bronze people
Harry and Jack rode a camel, and we kept telling Cooper he could go next time.  We meant next time we come to the zoo, but he thought we meant next ride, so he waited patiently while H and J rode and then lost his shit big time when they got off and it still wasn't his turn.  SO sad!
He got over it because he was so delighted by the goats' butts.

And then there was nutritionally void zoo lunch with Sponge Bob popsicles

Dorothy spent 99.9% of the trip like this:

We even rode the merry go round where Cooper lost his mind with glee-- Ben said he was giggling the whole time

I took his word for it

The boys clamored for stuffed snakes, and Ben obliged

As soon as we got home, we realized that all 4 kids had slept the whole way (which was LOVELY), but 2 of them sure as hell don;t need naps, so we hustled everyone off to the pool

Dorothy wore her wet suit

And crazy tan lines be damned, I wore her
Dinner was, of course, at the birthday bar we go to for birthdays 6 times a year.  As usual, things got out of hand before the end of the meal, but it started off fun!

I am glad Ben took this picture because I make it a point to smell Dorothy's head whenever I can. I told the kids tonight that they need to have lots of babies because I will need to huff baby head smell in about 20 years.  But for now, I have my own stash.
Harry finished his meal with a tiny sundae as usual. Cooper ate his own and Jack's, too.  Jack was too busy dipping his mini corn dogs in ranch dressing.  It was a 5-star nutrition day all around to be followed by bowling alley pizza and more cake tomorrow.

Harry told us tonight that this was his best birthday yet-- I hope he says that every year!