October 19: A good friday


Today was unusual. Big Bro did not have school. So we all had a “home” day at my home and LOVED it.

Highlights:

  • Woke up to Twin Husky (as usual) and cuddled in bed. Red came in with Cocoa (guinea pig).
  • Breakfast included the fireplace, oatmeal, home-made pancakes, and bread and butter (their new favorite).
  • Bikes outside; kids were in a great mood. Halloween costumes were on again. I showered while they had fun.
  • We went to Target to return some lightbulbs and get the right size. They loved the escalator ride. I loved that they know about the “list” and that they didn’t even waver towards any toys or ANYTHING else since it was not on our “list”. We were in and out in 5 minutes. On the escalator down, Twin Crazy had a spill and hurt her knee which fouled things up. Red was left up top, scared, but I asked her to hold tight and I’ll come back for her. Big Bro stayed with Twin Husky at the bottom and I carried Twin Crazy up the escalator again and we rescued Red. The girls were now laughing.
  • We went to the library afterwards. The kids picked out books almost immediately and 2 DVDs too; Big Bro checked out the books by himself with the bar-code reader. Red decided she wanted to be “old school” and go to the librarian to check out her books.
  • We went to the playground afterwards and the kids had fun climbing on trains, swinging, going down slides, and scaling structures.
  • We had a great lunch;
  • Twins were great taking their naps. Big Bro watched a Tinkerbell DVD while Red and I colored.
  • We had a delivery from Amazon – a guinea-pig play pen. I think she likes it. The kids do at least.
  • There was another delivery – the Buzz Lightyear t-shirt for Twin Husky to go with his blow-up wings. He was psyched.
  • Big Bro went over to a neighbor’s house to play Legos.
  • The rest of us were at home riding bikes, sweeping leaves, and decorating the house for Halloween.
  • Before you knew it, it was time for me to take them to co-parent’s. It turned dark and foggy on the way. As did my mood. So typical.

I spent other times during the day on email and on the phone with my office. A big meeting is next week that I will be leading; the heavy lifting all has been done. Now it’s just getting there, being smart, connecting with my clients, trying to “sell” membership to two different guest organizations, and facilitating 1 1/2 days of meetings and speakers. I am not concerned at all for this – I’m actually looking forward to it.

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After dropping off the kids I needed to sit in the ferry parking lot with the car (and heat) on and cry. There are so many things about all of this that are so unfair. After I let it out I got back on the road. I felt much better as soon as I got on the highway and got closer to my house. I pulled up to the house and saw the decorations hanging from our trees and I couldn’t help but smile. I love it here. I felt so much better as soon as I pulled up the driveway. I came inside with a fresh perspective. I made a great dinner of sauteed brussell sprouts, baby kale, leftover rice, and some Guinness poured in. It was amazing. And drank the rest of the Guinness. Yes, feeling much better now. So much better in my own space, with my own things, and with memories of each of my kids with so much joy here.

I can not wait until this divorce is finalized. Being entwined with him is damaging. I know that there will be better days for me ahead. This is a bump in the road but hopefully this bump will not last for long.

Have a great weekend everyone –

– Mama K

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October 18: Are you kidding me??!?!?


It was a reasonably good Thursday because of the kids; but the day sucked due to the divorce. I need to be done with this already – I am soooo over it.

Highlights of the Day:

  • I of course woke up to Twin Husky climbing into my bed. He is like a living alarm-clock. His routine is so predictable.
  • Chocolate Thursday! Kids were helping themselves and spreading their own Nutella on their tortillas. We were running a bit late.
  • Out of the driveway I ran over my side lawn and got stuck. One neighbor and one stranger walking down the street helped to push me out. It was pretty funny when my bumper almost got pulled off of my car. It’s just a piece of metal.
  • Drop off for Big Bro was fine; Drop off for Red was TERRIBLE. Lots of hugs, clinging to legs, tears. This happens every Thursday now. I hate it.
  • I took Twin Crazy and Twin Husky to a science museum in a closeby neighborhood. They had a great time playing with balls/air, floating things/air, tumbling, riding bikes with square wheels, doing puppet shows, etc. etc. etc. They really had a great time as did I.

It was an early pick up day for Big Bro from school. So at 12:30 we picked him up, and then Red. We headed back to my place and had a great time.

  • We painted fingernails.
  • Got the mail, watered the plants front and back
  • Dressed in Halloween costumes
  • Had a smoothie snack outside on the steps
  • Twins took a bath, I gave Twin Husky a haircut (he looks very handsome)
  • Had some neighborhood kids over to play
  • Played with Cocoa
  • Ate a fast dinner outside with our new patio furniture
  • Cleaned up, read books, scratched backs, tickled and hugged and said lots of “I love you”s.

In between all of this were emails and phone calls/ conference calls for work. Both related to the big meeting next week, and a new client project that we will likely bid on. It was great from a work perspective even though it was my day off.

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In between all of this also were emails and phone calls from co-parent related to the divorce. He wants to be reimbursed for his out of pocket healthcare expenses – is still on my health plan. Are you kidding me?????? I need to be rid of this. I want to move forward but he keeps holding me back. I can not wait to be free of this. I have never met such a cheap man before in my life. He would fight you for a roasting pan, believe me, he is fighting me for ours and the majority of our wedding gifts.

Ok, now that’s off my chest, I breathe deep and let it pass. I am in my own home now. And my children are sleeping happily in their rooms. They ate well tonight. They had two different houses of neighborhood friends come over. They are clean. They were playing with each other and the girls were laughing and playing tonight like best friends.  I received a TON of hugs from them and lots of good conversation with each of them tonight.  I look at them in their eyes when they talk to me and they are able to finish their sentences and thoughts with me and get a reaction from me.   I drank good, cheap wine tonight.  I have a guinea-pig who is running around her cage right now and who kisses Red non-stop and obviously loves Red the best.  The crickets are chirping. And work is going well. So I really can’t complain. I’m moving forward and am ready for what is ahead and I am hopeful that it will be wonderful and worth the journey.

Til tomorrow –

– Mama K

Random Thoughts: Parent Volunteering


During my day at work today I received a lot of emails.  Many were boring.  Many made me react like “Ugggh.”.   Some were mildly amusing, several made me laugh out loud (note:  I am getting my laugh back…. YEAH!!).   But I received one message today that really, honestly got me so excited and happy yet anxious and fearful all at the same time….. a request by Big Bro’s teacher to come to his classroom and volunteer my time during “Science Time”.

Of course I responded positively almost as soon as I received this email.   This is what I’ve been dreaming about.  Having the flexibility with work that would allow me to not only care for my youngest kids, but also get a glimpse into the lives of my older children while at their schools.   I find it strange transitioning from a mother who knows EVERYTHING about her kid (e.g., when last fed, burped, pooped) to a mother with an older child in school, where they are embarking on their own lives.  So much is unknown to us, to me.   And this is a good thing.   My son is his own person.   Why should I know everything that he has going on in a day?

Photo source:   artsedge.kennedy-center.org

Anyway, I have the opportunity tomorrow (Wednesday) to get a glimpse – 1 hour – of classroom time with him in 1st grade.   I’m so lucky!   And scared, I think.   The Type A personality in me would like to know what the subject matter is so I can prepare in advance.   (kidding.)

This has got me wondering about all of you… what kinds of reactions you have with volunteering and if you have the opportunity (or desire) to volunteer at your kids’ schools —

Have some fun and take the polls please!

What other thoughts can you share ladies?   What advice can you give me on “Science” in the 1st grade??!?!?!??!!??!   🙂

Thanks for listening –

– Mama K

September 21: Feeling free


Happy end of the week!   I was a stay-at-home mom today, well, sortof.   Despite my flex-time work schedule, I actually worked quite a bit – last preparations before the first conference next week…
Highlights of the Day:

  • The kids helped to get each other ready this AM.  Big Bro also helped pack up the breakfast, and got the vitamins ready for all kids.  It was ridiculous, and I will NEVER do this again, but I left all of me until the end and I wound up brewing my coffee in the french-press in the car on the drive.  Stupid.  Silly.  Ridiculous.  The coffee pot thing was rolling all over the place and I have coffee everywhere.  Oh well.  It can get cleaned up.
  • The ride was fine; we talked about Twin Crazy’s buildings in the city that look like castles, Twin Husky was busy singing into a traffic cone (I recently purchased for the kids bike riding in the street)… that’s all that I can remember.  Big Bro got there on time.
  • Drop off for Red was fine.   I took a phone call with a Consultant who is helping me with the conference.  I need changes made to a survey that we are sending out.   I need him to make the changes so I can send everything off this afternoon.
  • I took Twin Crazy and Twin Husky to Petco to buy Cocoa some hay.  I took advantage of the time there and we went to see ALL of the available animals there were to see.  Hamsters, rats, turtles, snakes, tarantulas, lizards, fish…  it was really fun.
  • We went back home since yesterday’s gypsy-living was too exhausting.   I picked up a chair to complete the outdoor patio set.  I am so psyched.
  • We watered the garden, played “castle” with the couch cushions, had some pee-pee accidents, cleaned up the floor appropriately, etc.  I made a quick lunch and we ate outside (loved it).  I again had to take some work phone calls.
  • I tried to get Twin Crazy and Twin Husky to take naps.   They were having too much fun.  I separated them but still they would not give in to sleep.  I worked, sent out emails, had phone calls.  More changes to the survey.  Then off everything went to all conference participants.   We had to boogie to get packed up and get Big Bro on time.
  • Big Bro pick up was fine; Red pick up was fine.  She pulled me to see her old teachers who are much more nurturing than her current teachers.  I think it makes a difference to the teachers to get so much love from these kids.
  • I took the kids to a playground until the transition with co-parent.  Twin Crazy and Twin Husky were scaling rock-climbing walls.  All were having fun.  Big Bro was watching an older kid on the swing, twisting the swing and spinning around and he tried to do the same.  I can’t believe my little boy is a bigger boy than I would like to admit.   Red was a total monkey, climbing all over the place.
  • We went to get gas and I cleaned down the windows at the gas station.  The kids love that.
  • We waited at co-parent’s driveway until transition.  Once he got there the kids got their bikes.  Red wanted to show me how she could ride her bike without the training wheels.  I am so proud of her.  She is so determined.  She just keeps on trying and trying.  And she went far.  The look on her face was stunning.   I wish I could bottle it up.  She made me so happy today.
  • I gave the kids kisses and went on my way.  I will see them tomorrow night.

At home, I immediately started some physical work in my backyard.  I attacked the dead pile of blackberry vines with a hedge-clipper.  I did this until it was dark.  In between I was able to catch a beautiful pink in the sky above.  It was gorgeous – a flaming sky behind the decay of blackberry vines.   I felt hopeful.

I just now finished up cleaning up inside the house while blasting music.   I ate red chard and green chard – I never had this before.  A new taste; different.  I’m not sure I love it but it is different.   I think I will do a bit more work tonight so I can feel free over the weekend.  I don’t want to spend the weekend thinking about this conference.   There is no need to since we are prepared for it and I know it will be just fine; and even if there is a glitch, it won’t matter in the grand scheme of things.

Have a great weekend all –

– Mama K

December 1: A day of adventures – climbing and sailing


I’m off today! Last night we had crazy wind (60 mph) – it was so bad that a neighbor’s fence came down. Poor Red was scared silly. So I caved in (again) and this is what I woke up to this morning:

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Highlights of the Morning:

  • Big Bro was excited that I was staying home today since he knew he could scooter to school. He was cooperative but slept later than I would have liked.
  • Red was excited about wearing her new sneakers to school.
  • Twin Husky was busy eating everything. We somehow gave him a cereal box to hold and of course he was busy playing a scientist and testing the laws of gravity. This is what I turned around to see:
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  • We were running a bit late (8:10!!!) but we still packed Twins in the stroller and got Big Bro suited up for his scooter ride to school. Unbelievably, we met up with the “Motley Crew” from the houses behind ours and all rode bikes/scootered/strolled together. They were the unfortunate neighbors with their fence blown down. I knew they were looking at all the other fences (upright) and knew they were getting more disappointed since they didn’t see any other damage…. they are fun people and I’m glad I’m getting to know them better.
  • We arrived a bit late but in time for Big Bro to make it to his class with his other classmates. I told him not to worry and that I’d lock up his scooter and helmet on my way home. On the way to the building there were HUGE piles of leaves; and leaves in smaller piles on the grounds. He couldn’t help himself but to walk through a small pile and kick his foot through the pile, leaves fluttering everywhere. I had to laugh. He is such a boy. It is such a strange feeling for me to have my first born as a full-fledged BOY, and my littlest set turning so big; Twin Crazy on the potty just kills me. I think the upcoming days are going to get just better, and better, and better.
  • I walked with the neighbors back home. We had to maneuver around the twigs and tree branches. They are really funny and I enjoy their company. It is good for me to have a dose of “real people” time on my full days off. The weather was beautiful – it felt like the wind just cleared up the air and the sun was shining and the Twins were busy pointing out dogs and staring and pointing at the playground in awe. I was looking forward with my day with them.
  • Highlights of the Rest of the Day:

  • At home, I ate everyone’s left over breakfast and made a second cup of coffee. A conference call that I had scheduled wound up being canceled so that freed me up to take the Twins out on an adventure. I decided on a place that has lots of different creative rooms good for kids under 10; there are a few toddler rooms and I figured let me take them now while the bigger ones are at school. We packed up and got ready to go. Dressed, shoes on…. they are so cute that I walked into the garage and there they both were just sitting there in their strollers – looking like they were all ready to go. I had to laugh. I pulled them into the van and then they knew it was going to be a real adventure.
  • Once there we played on waterbed lilly-pads, scrambled on structures, played with stuffed animals, looked at bubbly water, and heard the sounds of creatures being piped in all over the place. It feels so relaxing there. Like you are in a rain-forest. There were lots of kids there. And lots of nannies there too, ignoring the kids and texting on their phones. I hate it when I see that.I guess since there’s so much to do there for little ones, it’s time for them to take a break. But I just jump right in with the kids. I play on the lilly-pads too. And I tickle them. And I get them to jump and play and investigate and touch and run after the stuffed animals and say hi to the other kids and ask them if they’re having fun. I can’t imagine not engaging with them even when I’m in a place like this. They received a lot of attention from other parents/adults who asked if they were Twins. I love being a mother of Twins. Absolutely love it. One interesting thing is that when I do sit back and watch them – watch them wander, watch them out on their own – they never stray far from the other. In fact, most of the time I was there they were within 5 feet of the other. Even with the other kids around. They don’t have the opportunity of interacting with a lot of other kids (besides their siblings) so I was curious how they would do; it was interesting for me to see them still side by side. When one started to play “night-night”, the other walked over right next to him/her and did the same. When one started to climb a pillow structure and balance on the top, the other waited and tried to do the same. What a special bond they share. And it is largely unspoken. Again, I think things are going to get better, and better, and better with them as well.
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  • We spent only an hour there but then it was time for lunch. How come Denny’s never fails to make the BEST hash browns and pancakes???!?!?!?
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  • We headed home for naps and I straightened up a bit, did laundry, played with iPad/blog; once Twin Husky woke up at 3:30 I decided to quickly grab everyone up again for our next adventure. I think we had just enough time to do it….. so we got in the car again, I packed up snacks for all kids, picked up Big Bro and scooter, picked up Red… and headed to the parking lot of the commuter ferry!!!! I do this from time to time… take the kids and take the ferry to the city but just stay on it and come back. While waiting for the ferry, they had a great time playing on gates, looking at the water, looking for the boat, looking at the flag, pointing to dogs, and playing with the free newspapers (advertising). They were all well behaved and stuck together; when the ferry arrived the busy workers headed FAST to their cars and we were leisurely waiting for our turn to enter the boat. The crew knows us. They welcome us. And they continuously tell us that we have beautiful children (I agree).
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  • The ferry ride was great; the sun was going down, the kids were excited about the motion and being on the water. They almost pounced on me when I mentioned “snacks” and they downed 4 applesauces, 3 tangerines, and fist-fulls of raisins. It must have been the sea air. I had a relaxing ride. There weren’t many people on the ferry going into the city so we had a lot of room to ourselves and room to spread out. Plus the ride was essentially flat so I felt they were safe. The sun was setting. The kids were happy. Big Bro commented that when you look out of the front of the boat it doesn’t seem like we’re going fast but looking from the sides, where you were right near the water, it seemed really fast. He wasn’t sure if we were really going that fast and wanted to confirm that with me. I love that. His wonderment. His observations. His questions. And how he’s learning. And how the little ones are learning too, just by hearing the interaction between us. Red, as usual, was a little “mommy” making sure the Twins were properly seated and making sure they each had proper turns with the water bottle. I am so lucky.
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    Dinner was quick and all kids ate like champs. There were literally NO leftovers (I guess it was the sea air??!?). Afterwards was a blur but I decided to get them down earlier tonight. On days that I have enough time with them I feel better getting them to bed earlier – I think they need more sleep – particularly Big Bro. On days I work however, it feels better to stretch it to 8:00 but I know that’s probably too late for them.

    I had a wonderful day; the kids had a great reunion and I was able to manage something special for all of them. I’m looking forward to the same for tomorrow.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

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