I’m sitting here in the house… alone… the only noises I hear are the dogs walking on the wood floors and the washer.   Ryan is off at a friends house teaching him how to use his essential oils and Ningxia Red he just bought, the boys are at the neighbors house playing, and the girls are upstairs-resting- hopefully.   What is happening that I have a free hour or so of quiet time to me that I am not obligated to be working?   EEK!

Things going through my mind today:

  • I feel like a good parenting balancer this afternoon. (I know, that’s not a word.  Parenting Balancer.  Pssshhh).    Earlier today, Porter ran errands with his Papa, came home and asked to go to the neighbors to play.   Off he went.   Hudson and Amelia were occupied upstairs (messing up Hudson’s room) and later on, Hudson wanted to go.  I don’t always think to ask if a) their rooms are cleaned or b) have them do “odd jobs” to earn their time to play but today I made Hudson.  He had to clean his room and bring his laundry downstairs and put a load of his laundry in the washing machine.  I’m feeling good about this.  Why?  We are SO hard on Porter.  We know this.  We recognize it.  He’s the “compliant” kid.  He does what he’s told (most of the time).  He’s easy to ask to do things.   Hudson… needs work.   And sometimes we slack at parenting and let him get away with NOT doing things because its easier.  Today, he did his jobs without arguing or complaining.  He learned a little bit more about responsibility (and about turning his clothes right side out before putting in the laundry HA!).  And today, Porter got a free ticket to play without obligation.   It’s all about balancing, folks.   (Though I’m sure we’ll be off balance again at some time)
  • Why is Eloise fighting this nap?   We laid her down at noon, but then around 1pm Hudson and Amelia were fighting in Hudson’s room, loud enough to hear downstairs.  By 2pm Ryan brought Lu downstairs wide awake.  I’m not sure she ever slept.  I laid her back down because MAMA NEEDS SOME ALONE TIME.   She’s not having it but I’m demanding an hour of sitting in her crib.
  • What house project should we tackle next?  I feel like so many are intertwined.  I want to put up board and batten in the girls’ bathroom, but we need to figure out the tile first (because the tile IS the baseboard, so that’ll have to come out… and if that comes out the floor might as well come out).   Do we do the kitchen countertops?   If we do those, do we need to paint the cabinets first?  If we do the countertops that means… no new cabinets fora  LONG time if we end up staying here (not likely).  I want a new entry table for the foyer but maybe I should get a bench?   But… maybe we won’t be using that for coats/shoes for long if we turn the laundry room into a mud room.  What about our laundry room… I want to move that to the basement (we have 2 storage rooms down there and one would be perfect for a laundry room) and turn that into a mudroom.   UGH!
  • We’re thinking of taking the kids on “birthday trips” this year.  The travel bug is itching me bad right now.  I asked the kids where they would want to go if they could go anywhere or see anything in the US.   Porter said New York City/Statue of Liberty/Empire State Building.  Hudson wants to see the Titanic Shipwreck Museum in Canada.  Amelia… who knows.   So, we’re thinking of taking Porter to NYC for his birthday weekend, just Ryan, Porter and I.   And Hudson… he’s SO in luck.   A museum about an hour away is going to have THE SAME Titanic exhibit from Jan-May!   I’m not sure I can hold out until May to take him though, so maybe we’ll do his trip early and just do a low-key family birthday for him on his actual birthday (especially since Lu’s birthday is 4 days later).  Amelia… I’m thinking of taking her on a girls weekend or overnight trip to Chicago, or maybe to Disney World just to the Magic Kingdom.   I’m excited to get some one on one time with these kiddos!
  • It’s colder than cold outside right now.  Its so cold your throat closes up when you walk outside and your face hurts and even your skin hurts through your pants (if you’re wearing leggings HAHA).   I love the snow but… this cold is TOO cold.
  • Christmas is still up at our house.   I’d really like to saran wrap our tree and just put it in the barn or something for the year LOL!  Not that it’d fit easily out a door or anything.  It’s 12′.  😦  We (or I, actually) have been slowly taking down decorations and dropping them in the basement.  I guess that’s our current state of packing it away… taking it to the storage room downstairs and dropping it in a huge Christmas pile.  Once we get the upstairs rid of Christmas, we will tackle the storage room and organize, I guess?
  • Everyone is talking about New Years goals/resolutions.  I’m not making any.  Want to know why?  Because I never freaking follow through with them and then it just makes me feel crappy. So this year… I’m not making one stupid resolution. So there!

  1. looks like so much fun! i have to laugh at your ‘i’m on a no-swimsuit summer’… totally identify with that… except i’m pretty much STILL on a no-swimsuit summer, oops. 🙂 but, i think you are looking GREAT!

  2. It looks like a blast…..almost makes me wanna try it out sometime, I never thought I’d actually consider camping! LOL!! **Hudson was in a “big boy” outfit, too cute.**

  3. Wow Nicole! You had quite the weekend. And your pictures are just amazing. I think you should start to accompany us on our family vacations! You just get the best shots and really capture the essence of the moment!

  4. Glad you had fun! I’m not a huge fan of camping, but Kevin loves it so we try every once in a while. With 2 girls (especially if they are like me) camping won’t be a family favorit. Does look like fun, though.

  5. I’m totally not a camper, but if I had a place like that to go to I would definitely go all the time! How fun! You guys are so lucky!Loved all your posts and pics are awesome, as ususal.

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