Thursday, July 26, 2012

Healthy Is The New Skinny

Raising kids today is so much different, and a bit harder, than when my parents raised us.  I know every generation feels that way, but seriously.  My parents didn't have to worry about me getting on line and chatting with some pervert, or looking up porn on my phone.  Just a couple of reasons I'm keeping cell phones away from my girls as long as possible. Also why they will never have their own computer in their rooms.  Another difficulty we parents face, especially parents of girls, is body image.  We live in a country and world that is becoming increasingly obese, yet anorexic looking stars grace the covers of all the magazines in the grocery store.  It's hard to lead my girls in a direction of "normal", especially when they start to ask questions about being skinny.

Andy and I were raised with parents who taught us healthy eating habits.  Therefore, we our doing our best to show our girls those same habits.  They get fruit with breakfast, veggies with lunch and dinner.  We eat things like cereal, eggs, lunch meats, and chicken.  I throw fish in there at least once a week, much to the dismay of Lana.  I can't say I blame her.  I would never have touched fish at her age either.  She told Andy, recently, she doesn't like fish because it tastes like the ocean.  Well, duh!  But I do get it.  We also let them have treats, in moderation, and only if they do a good job eating their dinner.  Although, Lana will do her best to try make cookies her dinner.  

They also see first hand how important exercise is.  I work out just about every day.  Sometimes I do get a little crazy about it. I think I might be a wee bit addicted to it, but there are worse things to be addicted to right?  They also get exercise themselves in the form of gymnastics, baseball, and just playing outside.

Sometimes I worry that I'm trying a little to hard to teach them healthy habits and hope I don't make them obsessive about it.  Every once in a while one of them will ask,

"Mom is chicken, (fish, ice cream, carrots, candy-whatever food they are eating) good for you?"

I answer accordingly- yes, yes, not really but the dairy is good for you, yes, and not at all, but it's fun to eat every once in a while.  What I most want to teach them is that it's okay to eat everything, but not a lot of everything.  I truly believe that.  I'm big on moderation and even though I eat well most of the time, I do indulge.  I don't believe diets that make you omit things you like ever work long term.  I also believe that exercising is extremely important for so many reasons, keeping fit is a big one.  The hope is that by teaching them all this, they will avoid the obesity problem that threatens so many kids today.  I'm also hoping that it will make them smart enough to not puke up the piece of cake they just ate for fear of adding on pounds.  However, at this age it's hard to tell how much they understand.

Then a couple weeks ago,  Sonya layed it out for me.  We were on our weekly Target trip, picking up a few essentials you know, like toothpaste and alcohol.  I stopped in the alcohol section and grabbed a bottle of the Skinny Girl Margarita (which is awesome, by the way).  Sonya looked at it and said,

"Getting some Skinny Girl, huh?"

Sometimes it's so annoying that she can read.

"Yup," I answered.

Then she said to me, "Mom, is it better to be skinny?"

"Ummmm...."  I said stalling.

I hate when they catch me off guard like this.  What the hell am I supposed to say to that? I will be honest, part of me was of course thinking yes, but I can't very well say that to her.  Just because you're skinny doesn't make you better, and sometimes, doesn't make you healthier.  So I quickly came up with an answer that I patted myself on the back for later.

"Well, Sonya," I said. "It's better to be healthy.  Whatever that is for you is what is best.  Everyone is different sizes. Some people might be healthier skinny and some a little bigger.  You just don't want to be too much of one or the other, because then that's not healthy."

"Oh I see!" She said.  "So if you're too skinny that's not good and if you're really big then that's not healthy either, so it's better to be just regular.  Like you!"  

"Uh, sure." I said. 

 Huh, I had thought I looked skinny since losing my recent ten pounds, but I guess I look "just regular".  Oh well.  I guess she could have told me I needed to lose a few to be healthy.  I suppose being "just regular" is a better way to help them with their own body image.  It also reminds me that it's what is healthiest for me and helps me with my own body image.  Now I'm off to have some ice cream, but only 1/2 a cup because remember, moderation.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Playing Baby

Remember when I introduced Mercury and I mentioned it would only be a matter of time before the girls had him riding in their baby doll strollers?  Well...

Okay, it's the baby doll crib not the stroller, but close enough.  In my kids' defense, however, they only put him in there one time.  He now gets in their on his own to take a snooze.  This is much to the delight of all three of my girls.  Their own live baby doll.  This cat was made for our family.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Figuring It Out Already

As I was cleaning up the breakfast dishes on Saturday morning, Lana was playing and laughing at Mercury.  Being a kitten, he's always doing something that isn't the smartest, which leads him to do things like fall off chairs, fall off the bench seat, run into a wall....  Don't worry, he doesn't get hurt and it's always funny to watch.  

I think that morning he was between chasing a fly, and jumping on the table which led me to squirt him with the water bottle.   I love this cat, because he is so loving and more dog like than any cat I've met.      Andy even pointed out that he wags his tail more like a dog than a cat.  Jazz was all cat.  She would decide when you could pet her and when she was done she was done, and you sure as hell better walk away if you valued keeping your skin unscratched.  Mercury, on the other hand, is always up for some attention.  Sometimes to the point of being annoying like some dogs can be.   However, Jazz was very smart.  Andy even taught her a couple of tricks like how to meow back whenever he said "hi" to her.  She knew not to jump on the tables or it meant getting squirted.  I've all but soaked Mercury with the water bottle and ten seconds later he's right back up there daring me to pull the trigger.  Now, perhaps some of this is because he is still just a baby.  Or maybe it's because he is a little more dog like and they can be slow to learn too.  But I think it may just be what Lana said to me on Saturday morning.  

"Mommy, why does Mercury do that?  Did Jazz do that?"  She was referring to his constant jumping on the table and getting sprayed.  

"No, Mercury is a little dopey right now about things like that, probably because he's a kitten."  I told her.  

She replied back, "Yeah, and also because boys are more dopey than girls."

That's right Lana, and don't you forget it!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Who Needs Sleep?

You know what's fun?  Waking up at 4:30 to change your sheets because there's pee in the bed.  What's that you say?  That doesn't sound like fun to you?  Well you are not living then my friend!  Don't worry, it wasn't mine or Andy's.  Neither of us has ever been THAT drunk.  No, it was little Georgia's, and I promise she wasn't drunk either.  Okay, I'll back up and explain.

In the past couple months Georgia has been keeping her pull up dry at night on a pretty consistent basis.  Every once in a while it was wet, but she could go almost a week without an accident.  I've talked about dealing with her and Lana with this before.  Lana is still wet constantly, but Georgia seems to be showing signs of growing out of it.  So when we came back from vacation I tried to have her go without the pull up, and the first two nights she peed the bed.  Since I'm not a fan of changing the sheets in the middle of the night, I gave up.  Then one night last week, I forgot to put on her pull up, and lo and behold the next morning she was dry.  So we went with it.  That next night, she peed the bed, but I decided to try again. For almost a week now, she's been clean and dry and I was ready to claim victory.

Then two nights ago she woke up and wanted to come into our bed.  She was dry, but I made her go to the potty before she got in bed with us.  The problem with that was it woke her up a little to much.  Georgia gets a bit of insomnia from time to time and it took her TWO HOURS to go back to sleep.  Yes, TWO HOURS.  That means I'm awake during that time too, because she keeps calling for me.  Yay.

So last night she woke up again and wanted to come into bed with us.  This is something she does on a pretty regular basis, but I only let her stay for about five minutes before I move her back to her bed.  There is no sleeping with that kid.  Her tiny body takes up 3/4 of our queen bed pushing Andy and I to the edges.
When she came to my bed last night, I thought about taking her to the bathroom again, then remembered how wide awake that made her the night before and decided to take my chances.  It had been almost a week since she had an accident so we were all good, right?  Damn me for not listening to my first instinct.  You think I would know to listen to it at this point in my life.  

Every once in a while when she gets in bed with us, she and I will both fall asleep before her allotted five minutes is up.  That must have happened last night, because I awoke to her saying,

"Mommy, I pee-peed in my pants."

Through my sleepy haze, I was trying to figure out what she was telling me.  Once my brain comprehended, I reached out to feel her pants and that's when I felt warm liquid spread to my hip and leg.  DAMN!!

I jumped out of bed and my pajamas were soaked.  There was a huge wet area on the sheets and there was no getting around not changing them.  So up we all got at 4:30 in the morning, to change our pajamas and the sheets on the bed.

After everything was changed and in the process of being laundered, I was looking at 5 AM and a wide awake Georgia.  She tried to go back to sleep in her bed, Sonya's bed, her bed again with music, then back to our bed, where she FINALLY fell asleep a little before 6.  That was just in time for my alarm to go off for my morning workout.  Needless to say I pushed that back for a while.  Still, I'm exhausted and on my third coffee of the day.

So for those of you out there who have babies, I'm sorry to burst your bubble but even when they, "sleep through the night" there are still plenty of times when they don't sleep through the night.  You just don't have to feed them.  Or at least you probably shouldn't.  

Monday, July 16, 2012

Here They Come, Walking Down the Street....

Well, the girls have a new obsession, thanks once again, to their father.  We've moved on from Queen.  If we had adopted Mercury a month later he might have been named Monkee.  Not the kind that swings from the trees, but "Hey, hey, we're the Monkees!" kind of Monkee.  Yes, Andy has gotten them into, not only the music, but the show.  

Okay, it might sound like I'm complaining, but I promise I'm not mad about it.  In fact it's a much better show for them to be obsessed with than Hannah Montana, in my opinion.  It was the family programming of it's day.  Something we don't really have anymore.  Now it's either iCarly for the kids, or 30 Rock for us.  When I was a kid we were able to watch shows like Growing Pains or The Cosby Show that entertained both parents and kids. There isn't anything like that anymore and it's kind of sad.  That is why Andy decided to order the first season of The Monkees on DVD.  The girls already knew most of the music, because both Andy and I play it on our iPods.  However, there really is only so many times one can listen to Autie Grizelda, before you want to punch the old lady yourself.  That's the thing about kids, you can get them to listen to your music, but once they find a song they like they want you to play it over and over again until you hate it yourself.  Still, I'd rather listen to Daydream Believer 50 times than Wheels on the Bus any day.  

Since summer is here, the girls have been watching a bit more TV than usual, and they have already watched the entire first season of The Monkees.  Now they're watching them over again.  They all have a favorite Monkee.  The unfortunate part of them watching a show that was made over forty years ago, is that they don't understand that all The Monkees have aged and in Davey Jones case, passed away.  May he rest in peace.  I had to explain this to Sonya when she told me red faced and shy one day that REALLY LIKED Davey Jones.  Maybe even more than Jordan-her 2nd grade crush.  Once I explained that the show was made a long time ago and they are all older (or dead) she got it.  Lana, however...not so much.

On Friday, they took their obsession to a new level.  We were taking a shower when Sonya started saying that Lana was going to ask for The Monkees to come visit us for her Christmas present this year.  Santa can do that right?  He can get The Monkees!

Ummmmm....Okay let's set aside the fact that my kids are talking about what they want for Christmas in JULY!  Seriously girls?  You're as bad as Toys R Us putting out the back to school stuff in the middle of June.  And no, Santa can NOT get you The Monkees.

"How 'bout Micky!  Can Micky come see us?" Lana demanded to know.  

"I don't think so, Lana," I said.

"But WHY!?  Just get his number!"  She insisted.

Yeah, okay.  Then I'll get Colin Ferrel's number and let him know he's on my "list of 5" and would he like to come over so I can cross him off, please?  Andy won't mind.  He's on my 5!  

"Lana, I can't get his number," I tired again.

"WHY!?  Yes you can!  You can get it!"

"No, I can't.  And besides, you know he's not young like he was in The Monkees right?  He's older like Nona and Grampy or Medz Mama and Medz Papa."

She completely ignored this and kept begging for me to get Micky to come over.  Finally, I just said,

"Okay Lana, we'll see what happens at Christmas."  I had hoped this would keep her quiet.  No such luck.  

"Yay!! When Mickey comes over, can he read us stories??  Or if we take a bath can he wash us up in the bath?!" She asked me.  

"Ooookkkaaayy Lana.  We'll just see about all of that." 

Oh, boy.  

So for the rest of the shower and getting ready for bed, Lana talked about Micky coming to visit.  How the hell was I going to get out of this one?  I will say when that kid gets her mind set on something she is determined to get it.  She made me believe for a while I COULD get Micky to come visit us.  Perhaps I could put a You Tube video of the girls pleading their case?  Yeah, she got me thinking.  That girls is going to get what she wants out of life.    

Anyway, after they were all dressed and ready for bed, I got on the computer and Googled Mickey Dolenz.  Up came a home page with three pictures of him.  The first one was of him now, which I have to say the guy has aged extremely well and looks good, but he is 40 years older.  There was also a picture of him from the show.  I called Lana to the computer and said,

"See, Lana.  Here's Micky," and I pointed to the old Monkees picture.

"Miiiicckkkyyyy!" She squealed.

"And here is Mickey now," I said pointing to the more recent picture of him.  

She sat there for a minute blinking at the screen and then said, "Oh."

"See, I told you, he's older now.  That show was made a long time ago.  Do you STILL want me to see if Micky can come visit?" I asked.

She thought for a minute, then looked at me and said, "How 'bout Mike!?"


If I have any Internet friends out there with Monkee connections, could you please let them know my girls would like them for Christmas.  Thanks so much!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Big Sister or Second Mom

Sonya has always taken her big sister role seriously.  She likes to boss around her sisters which, I have to admit, is sometimes a huge help to me.  Since she's been home more during the summer, she has stepped it up a notch.  There are times, however, when I have to tell her to step off.  This is MY job, dammit!  I will be the one to tell Lana to not  pick her nose and wipe it on the wall in the Macy's dressing room!  But thanks for the heads up.  Most of the time I really don't mind her doing it, but when she gets a bit to bossy, I worry that the other two are going to get annoyed with her and start revolting like they do to me.  They need to be sisters and friends.  I need to be the common enemy.  So she tries to reign in it when I tell her to, but sometimes she just can't help herself. 

A couple weeks ago, after we got back from Florida, I had to take Lana to the school for her Kindergarten assessment.  This is so they can see what she knows and which class they will place her in this fall.(Or I should say summer, since they go back to school AUGUST 13th!  Don't get me started.) I had to take all three of them with me because where else where they going to go?  Apparently, the state of California frown on leaving a seven year old in charge of a four year old.  Whatever California!  You obviously haven't seen Sonya take over.  At least the assessment wouldn't take to long though.  

As we were sitting in the hallway waiting for Lana's turn, the teacher who would assess Lana came out to talk to the parent of the little boy she had just been testing.  We were sitting right there, so there was no way to not hear her tell the parent that he did okay, but needed some work on recognizing his letters and writing his name.  Immediately, I saw Sonya call Lana over to where she was sitting.  Sonya knows that Lana already recognizes and give you sounds to all the letters.  She has even started to read.  She also knows that Lana can write her name, but for some reason has been writing it in all capitol letters lately.  The teachers prefer they know how to write their name the proper way.  So Sonya, wanting Lana to do the best that she can just like a good little mother, says to her,

"Lana, when you go in there and they tell you to write your name, you have to write CAPITOL L, then LOWERCASE a-n-a.  Okay?  Remember that!"

Lana looked at her and nodded her head in agreement.  Then, just like a typical kid, Lana ignored her completely. The only thing the teacher said she needed to work on was writing her name with lowercase letters.  

See, Sonya?  This gig's not so easy after all!

Monday, July 9, 2012

She's A Heartbreaker

So as I mentioned on 4th of July we went to our friends Stacy and Rob's house to go swimming and BBQ.  They are Carter's parents who've I've mentioned a few times before.  Sonya and Carter have been friends since they were babies at Gymboree.  Despite being opposite sexes, they play really well together.  As far as we've always known, they only see each other as friends, almost siblings.  As it turns out Carter was thinking it might be more.  

We were all enjoying our lunch on Independence day, hanging outside by their pool, when I caught this conversation between Sonya and Carter.  

Carter-to Sonya, "You know, I'm old enough to have a girlfriend now."

Sonya- "Oh I'm old enough too, I have a boyfriend."

Carter-"Who? Me? Because you're my girlfriend."

Sonya-looking at him quizzically, "No!  Jordan."

Carter-"Who's Jordan?"

Sonya-"From baseball, remember?"

Upon hearing this I interjected. "Well, I don't think he's really your boyfriend, Sonya, you just like him."

Sonya-"Yeah, but I think he likes me too."

Carter-"But I thought I was your boyfriend?  I kinda thought we would get married."

Sonya-"WHAT?! NO!  You're my FRIEND, Carter!  I can't marry you!"

Carter, looking a bit crestfallen, said, "Oh, I just thought it made sense for us to get married someday."

Me-feeling bad that my daughter has just put Carter in the "friend zone" for life said, "Well, you never know what can happen Sonya.  Maybe you guys will get married one day.  Or you can have a deal where if you're not married by say, 35 you marry each other."

This suggestion was met by both of them giving me a "what are you talking about?" look.  

"Well, let's not worry about who is marrying who and when right now.  You are to young to think about it anyway.  Go swim!"  I told them both.  

There's nothing like witnessing the first time your daughter breaks a boys heart.  Sorry, Carter.  I have a feeling she will come around someday and you might break her heart, so you get a freebie.  Just this once.  

Thursday, July 5, 2012


We had a fun filled fourth of July with our friends yesterday.  We went to their house for swimming and BBQing, then last night we headed to the Starlight Bowl in Burbank for a concert and Fireworks. The girls were excited because they finally got to wear their American dresses they've been dying to put on.

I also made our nails Independence Day ready.

We received more than one comment/compliment on how cute and patriotic the girls looked while we were at the Starlight Bowl last evening. They were super cute, and I swelled with pride at every kind remark that was made.   It was one of those days that I didn't feel like selling my girls.  In fact, I was more than happy to spend the fun filled day with my entire family.  It was also one of those days where I remembered why I wanted to do this job to begin with, and thankful that I've had the opportunity.  Holidays tend to do that to me.   I know there are people in other countries, or even this one, who aren't as fortunate. I know I am one of the lucky ones and for as much complaining as I might do, I am a thousand times more thankful.  Happy Birthday USA!  (Here is where my mom cues  "Proud To Be An American".)

Monday, July 2, 2012

Pregnant Free For Four Years

Last Thursday was Georgia's fourth birthday.  I know, I know I'm behind.  I'm behind on all the holidays and birthdays lately.  Some days I feel like I'm barely keeping my face above water, but here I am still writing twice a week.  Better late than never, or better late than pregnant in my case.  I guess I shouldn't say that.  It's no secret and well documented on here that Georgia was a surprise baby.  A good surprise, after I got over the initial shock of being pregnant, despite the fact that I was taking care of an eight month old.   However, without Georgia our family would never have been complete.  Some higher power knew that.  

Georgia has always been easier than the other two, from the day she was born.  She wasn't a screamy baby like Sonya, and she wasn't stubborn like Lana.  She was, and still is, almost always happy.  She is the comic relief in our family, definitely her father's daughter.  A couple weeks before we left for Florida I was reminded of this.

Georgia does not like to be in situations that feel tense or heated, especially when it's her getting in trouble. She will do what she can to try to lighten the mood.  Much like her father.  We were having dinner one night, and the girls were talking about pigs and oinking, just being silly.  Then GG did something she wasn't supposed to.  Who knows what it was-not sitting in her seat properly, not eating over the plate, spilling her drink, playing with food.  These are just a few things that we encounter with all of them at mealtimes on a daily basis.  My favorite is Sonya sitting half on and half off her chair, like she has to be ready to run out of the kitchen at any moment.  What is THAT about?  Anyway-Andy was lecturing Georgia about something.  She was half listening, but he was pretty upset at the time, so she was trying to smile and make light of what was going on.  She dislikes having anyone made at her.  He realized she was only half paying attention and he stopped his lecture and said to her, 

"Do you understand what I'm telling you, Georgia?  Do you hear me?"

She looked at him, smiled a bit and said, "OINK!"

I had to get up and leave the room.  There was no way I wasn't going to laugh at that, which I knew would only make Andy more upset and fuel Georgia's comedy.    How could I NOT laugh at that?  

Always making funny faces for the camera.
I love how adventurous she is too.  She is always willing to try something knew and is hardly ever afraid.  This is completely opposite of Lana who is always apprehensive about new things and rarely changes her mind to try it.  Sonya is usually apprehensive at first too, but more ready to let down her guard.  When we were in Florida we visited a place called The Jungle Gardens.  They had an area filled with all kinds of Parrots, parakeets, cockatoos, and any other type bird you could have hang out on your shoulder or arm.  You got to pick which bird you wanted and the wrangler would place it on your outstretched arm, then you could pose for a picture.  As soon as Georgia heard about what she could do she ran over and picked out one of the biggest birds.  

"I want to do it!!  I want dat one mommy!" She said pointing to a bit white cockatoo.  

"Maybe you should pick a smaller one," I said.

"Noooo!!!  DAT ONE!!" She insisted, her arm already outstretched waiting.    

Luckily the bird wrangler talked her out of it, knowing the bird was probably about half her weight and she'd never be able to hold it.  She was the first of all the girls, including her cousins, to hold a bird and was ready to do it again  seconds after they took it away.  Sonya gave it a go, after seeing Georgia do it.  Lana stood her stubborn ground for a while, but relented when she realized that the small parakeet her sisters had been holding hadn't pecked their eyes out, so she was probably safe. However, she insisted on having the exact same one they had held.  No big bird for her.  Had it not been for Georgia, though, I doubt any of them would have held one.  Her throw caution to the wind attitude helps to free her sisters at times. I think it might help that she's the youngest.  I mean because if you're little sister is doing it, there is no reason you shouldn't be.   Although this doesn't always work.  Especially with Lana.  Especially with food.  Georgia will take a bite of anything I put in front of her, including sushi.  Not many four year olds are up for that. 

As she's grown in this past year, I've seen these two sides of her personality really develop.  They were always underlying in her before, but it's only been in the past  year that she will try to do whatever she can to make someone laugh.  It's only been in the past couple months that I've realized how brave and adventurous she is. Before I thought that was a trait she had because she was young, but the other two were not like that at her age.  They've always been more suspicious.  Sometimes that is better, but that is why they have each other.  Sonya and Lana will keep Georgia from jumping off the bridge, but Georgia will show them that with a bungee cord, it could be fun.  Hmmm...maybe I need to rethink this part of her personality as being a good thing.  

She loves playing in the waves.

She was the first one to feed the Giraffes at Lion Country.  

In Sonya and Lana's recent birthday posts I did throwback stories from the time they were babies.  I didn't do that this time, because I started this blog when Georgia was eleven months old and truth be told, I can't remember much in the ten months before that.  The first year of her life is somewhat of a blur to me.  It was probably one of the most difficult times I've ever been through, dealing with the three of them all so young and two so close together.  There wasn't much sleep back then.  Now that I'm on this side of things, the side where it's a bit easier-no diapers, no breastfeeding, they can entertain themselves-I can say how incredibly lucky I am to have had a surprise baby.  I honestly could not imagine a world without her in it.  She is a super sweet, sympathetic,  funny, fun loving, try anything, silly, sunshiny little girl.  As my friend Melissa put it yesterday, "she's a good egg". Yes, she is.   Best. Surprise. Ever.  I love you, baby girl.  Happy fourth birthday!