Wednesday, July 27, 2011


No real story behind this picture.  I just had to share it for no other reason than, aren't they so damn cute?!  This was after swim lessons one day in the lifeguard office.  I went to get their swim teacher's number, because we love her and she will make a fantastic babysitter.  These are the hats some of the lifeguards wear when they are on duty, so one of the guys put these on the girls, while they waited for me.  They loved it and I had to take a picture because again-so DAMN CUTE!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Disneyland Hangover

This past Sunday we took a trip to Disneyland.  Another friend of ours (not Melinda this time) who works for Disney wanted to take us with the girls. (Hi Courtney!)  She and her boyfriend don't have kids, and thought it would be fun to go with ours. Ahhhh... I remember those days when hanging out with little kids was a fun novelty.   Since she works for Disney this means she got us in for free. (Thanks Courtney!)  Works for us!  So off we went for a fun filled day in the "Happiest Place on Earth".

Despite the fact that it was July and a Sunday, we had a really great time.  The lines weren't that much worse than when we go in the middle of the week.  We figured it was because they have more staff and more cars/boats/trains running.  Plus Courtney and Mark are experts at visiting Disneyland and knew where to go and the secrets to the fast pass.   It was hotter than when we go in November, which makes for a bit of a tiring day, but we kept everyone hydrated and found shade where we could.  Besides Lana breaking down in line to see Minnie Mouse, because she "neeeeddeedd da shaaaaaadeee!" we did pretty well.  We stayed all day and into the night, for Fantasmic and fireworks.  By the time we left at ten that night everyone was pretty spent.  The girls were well past their bedtime and with no nap, I was surprised Georgia even had her eyes open, as we walked to the car.

It didn't take long once we got in the van though.  I don't think we were out of the parking garage before they all went out.  This is not something we do on a regular basis, so a little sleep deprivation every now and then for the girls isn't  horrible.  Well, until the next day.

If Disneyland is the "Happiest Place on Earth", then the day after Disney at our house is the most miserable.  Inevitably, the next day everyone has what I like to refer to as, the Disneyland Hangover.  Even I woke up the next morning feeling like I had downed a fifth of vodka the night before, while dancing on table tops at an L.A. night club.  But no.  I hadn't had a drop of alcohol the day before, and hate dance clubs.  I just had a bunch of sun, lots of walking and theme park rides.  The good news was everyone slept until nine the next morning.  I don't think that has ever happened in my house.  Oh Georgia tried to get up at 6:30am, but I put her in bed with us and encouraged her to go back to sleep.  I woke up at nine to the sound of the gardeners, while laying on the edge of my bed with Georgia right next to/almost on top of me.

Getting out of bed was difficult, so I decided to lay back down for a while.  Andy had taken the day off of work, knowing he would not want to get up the next day.  Smart man.  We lied in bed for a bit until Sonya and Lana made their way into our room.  They all decided it was time for breakfast, so Andy and I sent them off to the kitchen with promises that we were right behind them.  Except that we didn't move because we were still trying to get ourselves out of bed.

The girls weren't in the kitchen two minutes when we heard,

"Sooonnyaa!  Give me my Belle thing!  It's MINE!" Lana yelled.

Sonya says something we can't hear, then we hear more screaming from Lana.  I yell down the hallway asking what the problem was.  Apparently,  Sonya had taken Lana's Disneyland toy and wouldn't give it back, according to Lana.  Lana wouldn't ask for it nicely, according to Sonya.  Andy told Sonya to give it back since she shouldn't have taken it to begin with.  We aren't sure what exactly happened at this point, but there was running and chasing into Lana and Georgia's room.  This was followed by Georgia screaming then crying, and Lana crying.

Dammit!  I guess we had to get out of bed and squelch the situation.  So we dragged ourselves from our place of comfort, tired and hungover from not drinking, to fix things.

We tried to get the story on what had happened, but all we really found out was that Sonya took the toy then Lana and Georgia said they didn't want to play with her anymore.  This sent Sonya ran crying form the room.  All this took place ten minutes after they woke up.  It was going to be a looooonngg day.

I managed to get everyone settled and speaking to each other again.  We had breakfast and went on with our day.  There were more arguments and more crankiness than usual, from the girls too.  Bedtime couldn't come soon enough.

Today is better, thank goodness.  As much as I love going to Disney, I am not fond of the aftermath.  I'm sure all you parents out there can relate.  It doesn't have to be Disneyland, but any amusement park or fun time you have with your kids for an entire day which tires them out.  I just wish there was a solution to this problem.  Like a day after Disneyland.  A place filled with pillows, blankets, coloring books, crayons and LOTS of TV shows.  Right next door is the parent room filled with pillows, blankets, earplugs and LOTS of wine, or beer. Now THAT would be the Happiest Place on Earth.  

Friday, July 22, 2011

Missing The Diapers

Okay- Georgia has been potty trained now for what- seven months now?  Since January I believe.  She has even been night trained for at least two or three months.  That's why when she started peeing the bed EVERY NIGHT for the past two and a  half weeks (which has made my sleep really restful), and then having multiple accidents during the day, I became a bit worried.  

I suppose I should admit that while Georgia was the earliest and easiest to potty train, she is also the one who is the most defiant about going to the bathroom, and had the most accidents.  Half the time when she announces she has to pee, she has already let a little go, leaving her underwear anywhere from a tiny bit wet to soaked and needing a new pair.  She just can't be bothered to stop her play with her sisters to take two minutes to use the bathroom.  She might miss something important in those two minutes!  This is usually how getting her to use the potty goes:

Georgia dancing around holding herself.

Me- "Georgia, do you have to pee?"

G- "No."

Me- "Are you sure, because it looks like you have to go."

G- "Nooooo!!  I don haf to!"

Me- "G-go to the bathroom, it will take two seconds."

G- "Nooo! I don't haf to goooo!"  Still dancing and holding herself.

It's at this point that I eventually convince her or force her to go.  Usually the underwear is wet and we get new ones.  As you can imagine, this is not helping my incredible laundry situation.  

Then a couple of weeks ago, she started wetting the bed at night.  I haven't had a pull-up on her in months.  The first night or two it happened I didn't think anything of it, because she will have an accident every now and then.  But when it started happening every night, I had to put the pull up back on.  Still, I thought it was just something weird for the moment.  Then she started having pee accidents during the day.  One while standing on Lana's bed, one in the bathroom, one in my bedroom, one in her car seat when she fell asleep on our way to the Getty museum, and then the one that sealed it for me.  The one AT the Getty Museum.  THAT was fun.  

The good news was we were  in the Children's room at the museum and not in front of some priceless piece of art where everyone would be walking by with disapproving stares. (YOU try to get her to pee disapproving people!) No, this was just while she was standing on a stool coloring with Sonya and Lana.  I had asked her about two minutes before if she had to use the bathroom.  Of course her answer was no.  I knew her bladder had to be filling up because she had drank so much at lunch time.  I told the girls we had five more minutes.  Then we had to leave that area and find a bathroom, since I was sure Georgia would be asking for one at any moment.  No need for finding the bathroom though because, as they all stood drawing and coloring, Georgia calmly said, 

"I'm peeing."

Just like that.  No warning.  No, "quick I have to go now!".  Just, "I'm peeing".  It was like telling me she was hungry or tired. 

The pee ran down her leg and quickly puddled on the stool.  Stupidly, I tried to tell her to stop, but come on, I can't do that myself so how is a three year old going to?   I grabbed some wipees, cleaned up the mess on the floor, took the girls and went in search of a bathroom to change her.  The bad thing, or even worse thing, about this situation was I had no extra underwear.  I had put her extras on her when were in the car and I discovered she had peed herself on the way to the museum.  I did have stretch pants and a shirt for her though.  So Georgia went commando for the rest of the afternoon.  

The next day I called the Doctor, because this just didn't seem right to me.  My youngest sister Megan, who is a nurse, thought it was a good idea too.  She thought that there was a small chance that she could have a UTI, even if she wasn't complaining about any pain.  On Wednesday afternoon we took a little trip to visit the pediatrician.  After I explained the situation, the nurse  handed me a cup for Georgia to pee in. 

 "Nice.  That should be easy," was my sarcastic thought.  However, as it turned out, it wasn't that difficult and it became the highlight of every one's day.  Especially Georgia.  For the rest of the afternoon she talked about peeing in the cup.  As soon as Andy came home from work, 

"Daddy, I peed in da cup!" 

The next morning when she woke up, she told me about how we went to the Doctor's the day before and she- "peed in da cup!!"  She's going to be super excited when she gets pregnant some day and has to pee in the cup! every time she goes to a prenatal visit.  

They did an initial test of her urine at the pediatrician's office, and they didn't see anything unusual.  No UTI, no diabetes, so that was good.  The Doctor asked me if there was anything unusual or stressful going on  in her life, but there isn't unless you count the summer craziness.  I suppose it's just a phase she's going through.  At least that's what we're writing it off as for now.  She has been better the past couple days and hasn't had any accidents.  She's even been dry at night, but I'm keeping the pull up on her for a few more days.  I need the sleep.  And less laundry.  

Let this be a lesson for all you parents out there itching to get your kid out of diapers. As you can see it's not always what it's cracked up to be.  You still have to change your kids and clean them, more often than you expect.  Not to mention it's a bigger mess without the diaper to contain it.  As it turns out- underwear-not so absorbent.  

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Cleaning Solution

Well, the summer is moving right along.  In just three and a half short weeks Sonya will be back in school. Yes, it is earlier than most schools, but they did get out before Memorial Day.  It's been a fun time on the one hand.  We've been able to go on little "field trips" to museums, the farm, and amusement parks, since nobody is in school.  It's also been difficult trying to figure out what kind of schedule we have every week between day camps, swim lessons and gymnastics.  There is one thing, however, that has been driving me absolutely crazy, just about every day.  The mess in the house.

I guess I should preface this by admitting that I'm a bit of a clean freak.  It's really my mother's fault. Our house was always immaculate when I was a kid, thanks to her.  When I was old enough, it was because my sisters and I cleaned it that way.  So I'm not really fond of messes and especially clutter.  Something we seem to accumulate easier because of how small our house is.  That and the fact that we've lived here almost nine years. 

Since the three girls are home all day long, the amount of toys that get taken out and played with,  is just about all of them.  Every day.  At the end of the day, I make them clean up their rooms. And that, that my friends is the worst part of all of this.  They seem to view the cleaning up the mess as a fate worse than taking away their ice cream.  You would think I was trying to pull out their toenails, the way they complain.  It's about this time that I start to lose my temper, and make all kind of empty threats like "summer fun will be over for you guys!" or,  "you're going to bed without stories" and my personal favorite, "I will put all of these toys in a trash bag and take them to the poor kids!" I've even pulled out a trash bag a time or two on that one.  I'm not proud that I do it, but I so can't help it.  I can't take the disorder, and I become incredibly frustrated when they start whining about having to clean up the gigantic mess that THEY made in the first place.  

Now I know you're probably wondering "how bad can it really be?"  I am here to tell you, you have NO IDEA.  Every morning they wake up and go into one of their rooms to start the day's destruction.  I'm either still in bed for a bit or doing my morning workout.  At first it was great that they were entertaining themselves and not asking to watch TV.  However, by week two of summer break I realized just how skilled they had become at tearing a room apart.  They will be up for about 45 minutes and I will walk in to find puzzles, books, babies, baby clothes, strollers, barbies and Little People piled up around their small room.  Don't even get me started on the day they decided to play tea party with actual water, cinnamon, and RED SPRINKLES.  

I force encourage them to go outside as much as possible to play, since it is summer and we have a blow up pool.  Eventually, they end up back inside and even more ready to ruin what hasn't been touched yet that day.  It's a no win situation.  I want them to play and I don't mind them taking everything out, as long as it gets put away with minimal problems.  Which is the problem.  That doesn't happen.  

Some of you I'm sure think I should just close the door to their rooms and ignore the eyesore.  Except that when you live in a small house and everything is on the same floor, ignoring the mess is really not much of an option.  And remember, clean freak here.  So I continue to fight them every night to clean up the chaos they made throughout the day.  While some days it's not quite as bad because we're not home, the days we are home, I don't think there is a toy left unturned.  I know some of you out there have had similar problems.  Isn't this an age old issue for all parents? Well,  I'm open to any motivators to getting my kids to clean up that anyone wants to throw at me.  I think I've tried them all, but who knows.  At least when school starts, part of the problem will be taken care of, because there won't be the time to create such destruction.  That's still three and a half weeks away though.  So until then...well, let's just say BevMo needs to have their 5cent wine sales more often.  

Friday, July 15, 2011

Bed Hog

 This is the reason I don't ever get a good night's sleep:

I know, I know, we shouldn't let her sleep in our bed.  We don't really.  She usually comes into our room in the middle of the night, I let her lay with us for a bit then put her back in her own bed.  Sometimes I fall asleep for a while, after she comes in, then I wake up on the edge of my bed, while she is spread out in the middle of Andy and I like this.  This morning, however, she didn't come in until around 5am.  I got up a bit later to go to a boot camp class.  She was still awake when I got up, so I let her stay in our bed with Andy.  Also,  because she had peed her own bed and I didn't feel like changing the sheets at that moment. When I came home from my class, I found her like this and Andy squished over to the left of the bed.  For such a little girl she sure takes up a lot of room!  

I haven't stopped her of this habit of coming into our room, because I don't mind it really.  I also found the best way to stop it is to just deal with it for a while and she will stop on her own. At least that's how it worked well before.  We went through this same thing with Lana about a year ago, if you remember.  Eventually, she just stopped waking up in the middle of the night and coming into our room.  She sleeps better now than she ever did.  I'm just hoping Georgia ends up being the same way.  

So for now, I will miss out on a full night's sleep and wake up on the edge of my bed.  When you roll over to see this cuteness, it makes it all okay.  

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Super Girl

Sonya is at an art camp this week and after I pick Lana up from her preschool camp, we go to the park near Sonya's camp.  The two little girls play until it is time to get Sonya.  During their play time today, Lana ran over to me and showed me something she had found in the sand.  

"I found a jewel!" she told me.

Or just a clear crystal bead, but still, it was treasure to her.  She asked if she could keep it and I told her she could.  She carried around with her the rest of her play time at the park.  Then when we were leaving  she told me, she had to take the jewel from the park, not just because she liked it, but because she was helping the animals.  

"What do you mean?" I asked.

"Because Sissy said that when we found da Elmo book at da beach," she explained,  "we had to take it so no animals would eat it and die." 

(Quick back story on that-The girls found one of those baby, squishy bath books in the water at the beach a couple of weeks ago.  They claimed it as their own, when nobody else did.  I guess it was during that time Sonya told Lana it was good of them to take it so no animals would eat it and be harmed.)

I guess she was applying the same logic to finding the bead, or "jewel" at the park.

"Oh I see," I said.  "So you're taking the jewel so no animals will find it and eat it."

 "Yeah!  So they don't get sick," she told me.  Then she held up the bead and said, "WE'RE SAVIN' DA WORLD!"

I just giggled to myself, because it was so cute and innocent.  I love how simple a four year old sees things.   If only saving the world WAS as easy as making sure a helpless animal didn't eat a book or bead, then I'd feel so much better about sending my girls out into it someday. 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Twenty Questions

Last night, after dinner, I was making homemade ice cream sundaes for everyone.  The girls were anxious to get their ice cream.  They were having a hard time sitting still, so Andy started to play a little game with them to keep them occupied for five minutes.  Because you know, when you're a kid, waiting five minutes for ice cream might as well be five months.  So he started to ask them questions like:

"Who here has curly hair?"  Georgia and Lana raised their hands.

"Who here has blue eyes?" All the girls raised their hands.

"Who here is a smart girl?" Again, they all raised their hands.  Andy and I were proud of the fact that they all think of themselves as smart, so point for us there.

"Who here has straight hair?" Sonya raised her hand.

It went on like this for a minute or so, then he decided to ask a silly question like this one:

"Who here has stinky farts?" I look over to see Lana with both hands in her lap, Sonya with her hand raised high in the air and Georgia pointing a finger over at Sonya sitting next to her.

I think I laughed so hard I might have let one slip myself, and probably should have had my own hand in the air.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Not A Good Sign

There is a story about Lana that I wanted to tell you all, but it didn't happen while I was around.  However, it is so amusing and disturbing at the same time, that I had to share.  

Last week my next door neighbor, Victor, came over to hang out with the little girls.  Georgia was napping and I had to pick up Sonya from her day camp. I didn't want to have to wake Georgia up to go.  So Victor, who is off his job for the summer, generously agreed to stay at my house for the fifteen minutes I needed to be out.  Later on that week I asked him to come over again for the same reason.  Before I left, he told me he had forgotten to mention what Lana had done a few days before.  

Victor had come over to the house chewing gum.  I don't know if I've mentioned on here before, but my girls are obsessed with gum.  I think it's the ghost of my Noni that influences them.  My mom says she used to give us gum when we were old enough to chew it.  So all three of my girls love gum, even though the older two spit it out as soon as the flavor is gone and Georgia swallows it in about three minutes.  I used to be worried about that, but then that worry subsided when she started to throw a fit about me not letting her have gum.  So eh-whatever I say.  

Okay so back to Victor chewing gum.  Lana noticed it and said to him.

"Do you have gum?"

He told her he did and was chewing it, but didn't have anymore.  At this point, she jumped up and told him she knew where the gum in our house was.  She ran into the kitchen to get herself a piece and came back out chewing away.  Victor didn't question it  to much since this seemed to be a normal occurrence from the way she knew where to get gum, and it certainly is.  

They continued to play and then after about five minutes she told him she would be right back.  At this point she disappeared for a longer amount of time.  Victor started to get a bit worried that she was gone for a bit to long and might be getting in to trouble, so he called for her.  She came running down the hallway from the bathroom back to where he was on the couch.  

"Where did you go?" He asked.

"Oh, I went to spit out my gum.  Den I had to bwush my teef, so my mom wouldn't smell da gum in my mouf."




Isn't this something TEENAGERS learn to do after they've been drinking and/or smoking to try and hide it from the parents?   My four year already FIGURED OUT HOW TO DO IT!  Although I really wouldn't have cared about her chewing gum, she tried to hide it from me, just in case.  

Somewhere around the year 2021, expect me to lose my mind. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Fishing For a Happy Birthday

Wow I am really slacking with my writing this summer!  Sorry about that.  The problem is I thrive on schedules and with summer comes lack of a schedule.  So I've sorta been all over the place and have had a hard time finding a moment to write.  Today I did though!  Yay for me!  

I hope all of you had a fantastic 4th of July weekend.  We all had fun here in Burbank.  July 4th weekend is usually a big deal in our house, because Andy's birthday is July 2nd.  It usually ends up being a three day long celebration.  Needless to say we were all exhausted by yesterday.  Andy even claimed he needed to go back to work for a vacation.  It wast one of those weekends where we went out did something, came home and dropped off some of our things, only to turn around and go back out again.  There was fishing, going out to dinners, hanging at  the beach, watching a Hall and Oats concert at the Hollywood Bowl (yes I said Hall and Oats), BBQing with the neighbors and going to see a concert and fireworks here in Burbank at the Starlight Bowl.  See?  It was packed but it was fun all around.  One of the best parts of the weekend was the fishing.

We went fishing on Andy's birthday at his request.  He's been fishing a handful of times in his life and much to his disappointment, has never caught anything.  He was determined that this time he was going to fish and catch something.  So determined, in fact, that he found a place that had stocked Trout ponds.  A place called Trout Dale.  

Yes, I'm serious.  Trout Dale.  It was about a forty minute drive from our house.  We got there in the morning and got all set up with our fishing poles.  We watched all around us as other people caught fish after fish. While we caught a lot of nothing.  Andy was becoming frustrated, but I could see he wasn't ready to give up yet.  I mean these were small ponds stocked full of trout.  How could you NOT catch one?!  

After about two hours, I can tell you how you can not catch one.  Do it the wrong way.  Who knew?  I'll get back to that in a minute.

The girls were getting a bit antsy after being out there a while.  Sonya was doing okay, but the younger two...  well, you know how they are. At least you do if you've been reading this blog for even five minutes.  They dug in the dirt for a while, had some snacks, took about 4 trips to the bathroom all while waiting for a fish to be caught.  They briefly tried to fish as well, but that didn't last long.  The ponds that we were fishing from didn't have any kind of barrier around them.  The more antsy and physical they got, the more I started to worry that one of them was going to go in.  It was at this point that I decided to take them to the car and see if they would sleep or, at the very least, rest.  Andy was still not ready to give up on the fishing, and seeing as how it was his birthday, I figured I'd let him try for a bit longer before I had to drag him away.  

Sonya stayed with Andy to continue the quest for a fish, and I sat in the car with the little girls.  They decided to played Barbies instead of sleep, but at least there wasn't a chance of them going for a swim in the pond anymore.  Then I noticed Andy had moved to a different spot in the pond and watched as he talked to one of the guys who ran Trout Dale.  I kept my eye on what was happening and about 5-10 minutes after talking to the man, I heard Sonya squeal and watched as Andy struggled to pull a big trout out of the pond.  

I quickly grabbed Lana and GG and ran over to where Andy had finally caught his first fish.  It was already cut off the fishing line and in the bucket.  We all congratulated him and while he was excited, he was a bit disappointed that he didn't have a picture of catching his first fish.  Oops.  Sorry babe.  So I took this one instead.  

He explained the couple pieces of advice the man had given him and the "power bait" he had used.  I decided to try for myself and within five minutes also caught a fish, although not as big as the one Andy got.  This wasn't so hard after all! Fortunately for me, Andy was there to take my picture.  (There was one of me smiling, but this one was so much more amusing.) 

We decided after being there for nearly three hours and catching two fish, maybe we would be done for the day.  Andy did try one more time before we left, but he lost the rest of his bait in the water, so we called it quits.  I know he just wanted that picture.  He continued to talk about how nobody was there to take his picture as we got packed up and got in the car.  It was mostly in a joking tone, but I could tell he was disappointed.  

As we were leaving Trout Dale, Andy asked the girls if they all had fun and they exclaimed that they had.  Then Georgia proceeded to recap the day for us:

"We went Daddy caught a Mommy caught a fiiiiissshh...and dere was nobody dere to take Daddy's piccttuuurree...."

So, sorry about the lack of a picture babe, but you at least you have a fun memory of catching your first fish, on your birthday with your family.  I love you, baby!  Happy Birthday!