Saturday, January 31, 2009

Backyard

Athena called to me from outside, "Hey Mommy, come take our picture!"
Eating the messy nori OUTSIDE for snack time.
Painting OUTSIDE.
All their vehicles, yes, again, OUTSIDE.

All bundled up on a cold morning, but still playing OUTSIDE. I am so happy we have a yard now. The kids have been having so much fun. Now I just have to make it more comfy out there. We need some plants as there is nothing going on. I don't know how much effort to put into it though since we aren't planning on staying here too long. Some veggies growing would be nice too.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Still Loving It

The kids are still loving the new house. Every morning as soon as they wake up, they like to go out and ride bikes. It is fine by me as it gives me time to get breakfast ready, etc. Our landlords live next door and brought us a nice house warming present with bread, tangerines, and stuffed animal horses for the kids. It really is weird to have such friendly people around. The weather finally warmed up and the house doesn't seem so cold. I am very happy about that as I was worried what the SDG&E bill was going to be.

The latest with the kids...Rowan is learning all sorts of new phrases that he surprises us with. Last night after dinner Athena kept asking me for a banana and Rowan busted out, "Not right now!" That was pretty funny. Today when I told him it was time to leave a friend's house he said, "One more minute!" He really is a funny one, and he did wake up feeling better Monday morning after he started taking medicine for his ear infection. He is also working on his 2 year old molars, so far only one has poked through, thus more restless nights in my future.

Athena is getting so mature. She had her first sleep over with her cousin over the weekend. She was so happy and can't wait to do it again. Today she played at a friend's house from her school. I realized it was her first "playdate" without me around. She can't wait to do that again too! She is enjoying her school and does lots of art every day. She isn't making 20 bracelets a day anymore, but is now writing lots of letters to her friends. She loves to paint and draw at home as well. Athena is also ALWAYS hungry these days. It is driving me insane, but I have an approach to it that seems to work out OK.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

We are here

We are here in our new house, making our way through the boxes. We are exhausted, but everything went about as smoothly as it could. The rain on moving day, sick toddlers, etc., no, really all in all it is going well.
I made my first batch of muffins tonight, signifying this is place is now "home".
The kids are thrilled to have space to run around, and a yard/patio to play and ride their bikes. Athena has been riding so much! It is good to see her enjoying so much time outside without me having to head to a playground or trail to hike. Rowan has been sick, but he has been loving it too. I'm hoping he wakes up as good as new in the morning as he has an ear infection:(
This house is almost twice as big as our old house that we sold in August so we have plenty of room just about everywhere (except the kitchen which I've already overfilled with my stuff). We have 3 bedrooms. Athena really wanted her own room, so she has one room, Ro has a room that is also the office, and then we have our room which is where everyone sleeps. Everyone seems happy with this arrangement for now, so I think we will stick with it.
There is so much to tell, let's see. My (our) new refrigerator is awesome. Chris found it 1/2 price at the Sears outlet. I'm in love. We also have a new washer/dryer which is super nice. Our washer at the condo didn't seem to get our clothes very clean at all so I'm happy to have our very own again. This house is COLD. I'm freezing unless I'm under a blanket. We've cranked the heater so now it is better but while living in the condo we NEVER had to run the heat, and I rarely felt cold, definitely not this cold.
The neighborhood is nice. We actually had a neighbor come by yesterday we a letter to us telling us about the party they were having tonight to celebrate their 21st birthdays and had their cell phones listed to call them if things got to noisy. They were super friendly, and I just don't think at age 21 that I would have done that, although I do remember inviting the upstairs neighbors once.
Our neighbors across the street also came over to introduce themselves. They have a boy just one month younger than Ro, so maybe he'll have a playmate. An observation, there are lots of nannies in the area, I guess that I'd have to work too if we wanted to buy in this neighborhood so that makes sense. Anyway, I'm really tired, probably not making much sense since I was up all night with Rowan last night, ear infections are the worst!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

moving

Veganmomma and family will be moving this weekend. I'm excited, although not overly since it isn't exactly what we had planned. If you remember, we sold our house back in August and moved into temporary housing, a condo near chris' work. We planned to continue looking for the right house to buy but that never panned out, so five months later we are headed to a new house, but still renting. I am so happy we will have more space, a small yard, and no downstairs neighbors! We told Athena she can jump all she wants now and she can't wait to play the "no more monkeys jumping on the bed" song when we get there. Moving is always stressful, but I think it will be a little better this time. We have all of our stuff spread over three different areas and will be collecting it back into our new house. Hopefully we will do some purging as living in the condo we've lived with a lot less "stuff". I have missed some things that I didn't even think I would like my waffle maker which is hiding out in storage. I haven't missed the piles and piles of miscellaneous toys at all though so hopefully we can find some good homes for some of these. I hope I will stop hanging on to so much stuff that I no longer need or use, just because I like it or think it had some meaning for me at sometime. So that is my update for now. Tomorrow night will be our last night here and there are a few things I will miss about this place:

  • the pool in the summer
  • walking to whole foods, trader joes, playground, and shopping mall
  • walking to daddy's work (and chris being able to walk home for lunch)
  • granite counter tops (these always look clean!)
My list of what I won't miss is much larger so here are a few examples:
  • walking through the parking lot and up the stairs to get to our front door (with a sleeping 30 pound toddler who I am praying won't wake up)
  • walking down the stairs and through the parking lot to take out trash and recycling
  • having downstairs neighbors
  • people shushing us on a weekend morning while we walk through the complex to get our mail
  • having a gate to enter our property
  • not having a yard for the kids
  • feeling cramped for space
  • having a crappy washing machine
My next post will be from our new home...we even set up the internet already so we wouldn't have to wait like the last move. I know, we are pathetic!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Ro loves to read

video

Ro loves to read books. It is so much fun to see how much he remembers from each book and which ones he loves to read over and over again. This is him helping me read one of his favorites called "Truck Talk". Both the kids love it, Athena has it memorized. Some of his other favorites are "Farting Dog!" (Walter the Farting Dog), "Dig man" (Digger Man), and many of Athena's little reading books. He loves all of his truck, fire engine, and train books and has quite a few that we cycle through. I love the way he talks. Some of my favorite words of his right now are "cool bus"=school bus, "cor cor oy"=corduroy, "got be McQueen"=gotta be clean. The list goes on and on and they just make me laugh!

Open House

Athena had Open House and a singing performance at school last night. She was so excited she was bouncing off the walls for about 2 hours preceding the performance.
Athena on stage, she looks nervous but she didn't act it.
Sitting on the bench outside her school office.
Athena and Ro are ready to go!

Here she is with her "metal mutt" that she and her classmates worked to create. They brought in metal pieces from home and then worked together to decide how they'd use the materials to create their robot dog.

Here is a "solo" performance that she did for me before we left because the videos from her actual show were pretty dark.


video

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Back to Basics Balsmic Vinagrette

That dressing from Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan has been the biggest hit in my household. Athena asks for seconds on salad, tonight it was actually, "Mommy, I looooove that salad, can I have some more!?" We are in total shock as we never thought she'd eat salad and LOVE it! It hasn't won Rowan over just yet, but he is still young so I'll give him time. Athena has actually been killing me at the dinner table. Earlier in the dinner she declared, "Mommy, I LOVE white tortillas!" Wow, what a treat for a poor vegan kid, white tortillas. I always buy whole wheat or corn but today we had a brunch at Grandma's house so I bought some white ones as a "treat". I hope Athena doesn't start bugging me for those now on a regular basis! And one more thing, is it awful that I fed my kids the same thing for lunch and dinner today? They didn't seem to mind one bit, but for some reason I feel kind of bad for doing that:)

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Seitan

I made seitan for the first time Thursday. It was easier then I expected and turned out well. I used the recipe from Veganomicon for the super easy seitan or something like that. We used it to make sandwiches and the kids just ate it plain. I didn't take pictures as it really just looked like a small blob of brain. If you've ever bought the seitan in the package, it looked just like that but tasted better and the texture was a bit softer. I'm glad I'm putting my organic wheat gluten to good use, plus I couldn't stand to spend $6 on that blob they sell in the store, what a rip off.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Rowan Skateboarding

video video"Mine, mine buh bowd (skateboard)."

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Ringing in the New Year

We rang in the new year quietly in our home. Chris and I actually went out to an early dinner and movie and made it home around 9:30 to put the kids to bed and let my mom get home before too many drunk drivers were on the road. We had a really nice dinner at this Greek restaurant and then went to see the movie "Milk". It was so nice to have a night out, we hadn't had one in way too long. Dinner and the movie were both fantastic. When we got home, the kids were all snuggled in bed with my Mom listening to her tell stories in the dark. It was so cute. Rowan immediately ratted Grandma out and said, "cooka cars" (car cookies), it was so funny. We barely made it to midnight that night, I think I actually went to bed at 11:55 but then Athena had to go to the bathroom so we were definitely awake at midnight. Once we were all settled in bed, I whispered "Happy New Year" to Chris and I took a moment to be thankful for everything in our year and hope for even better in 2009.

So now we are in 2009 and things are just fine. I don't usually make New Year's Resolutions because I tend not to follow through. I do have a few things I am working on right now though.

1. Eating better. Mostly I'm trying to include more salads as I always cook with vegetables and eat fruit pretty regularly. I am *thinking* of trying to cut down on sweets as well but am trying to think of an attainable way of doing that.
2. Exercise more. At this point that should be easy to do since I'm not doing much of anything these days. I have a new pilates DVD, but really want to start jogging again, or do I?
3. Take care of my overall health. I know I'm due for a check up and probably should get that scheduled. I've started acupuncture and am taking some herbs in conjunction with that to hopefully get me back on track. I'm dealing with some sleep issues and just trying to get back into "balance". I think once that is on track, I will be able to accomplish more because I'll have more energy and won't be dragging so much as I have been. After 2 weeks on my herbs, I am definitely sleeping better and am hoping for more success as well.
4. Get more organized (after the move). We are moving in just over 2 weeks and once we are in our new house I want to get some new storage options to help get us organized. Mostly it will be the kitchen supplies and kids toys/art supplies that I'll need to focus on.