Monday, December 31, 2012

Four Down, Many to Go

Today is my four-year wedding anniversary. We went to an early movie, dinner at our new place, and were back home in time to put Josie to bed at 8. Now we're in comfy clothes and looking for a funny movie to pop in. Perfect night.

We've come a long way in four years, but an even longer way since the day we met back in 2003. Before I began oversharing documenting our lives on this blog, I was a fresh-faced gal with a handsome dude at my side. Here are the highlights from those years:

A few days after we met:











And then he PROPOSED!

And then we GOT MARRIED!



And four short years later, we look more like this:

The night of my wedding was the best night of my life, and not just for all the mushy-gushy joining-our-lives-together reasons, but because I had SO MUCH FUN. Jeremy and I danced and laughed for hours and hours. It was the perfect way to start our marriage: dancing and laughing.

Things are definitely different these days. We're ... busier. And way more tired. And we don't have as much time for ourselves or each other. 

But it's all for two pretty awesome reasons. Back when we were young and fancy-free, I never could have imagined how hard it would be to be a parent, but I never could have imagined how amazing it would be either. One of the main  reason it's so great is because of who I had babies with and who is around to help me raise them up. Our relationship has changed, but in great ways.

We're still in love. Wildly so. He's still my best friend. He's the only guy I would want to take this journey with. He's an awesome father and husband. We're still dancing and laughing together, and will for the rest of our days. 

Four down, many to go.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

A Tale of Five Christmases

5 christmases

Okay, not so much a tale as me dumping my favorite pictures from Christmas 2012 in your faces, but you know. You take what you can get, right?
















I hope you feel as lucky and happy as I do this holiday season. Love to you all!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Kids are Funny Like That

My kid ... she is priceless. She is what I routinely refer to as "really something else." She .. .well, let me just get to the story.

We had a doctor's appointment today for both of the girls to get shots. Let me stop here and say that this says much more about how much better I'm handling life these days than anything else ever could, especially since back in Genevieve's newborn sickly-baby days, immediately following the first time I had to take her to the doctor with Josie in tow, I tweeted this:

And yes, here I am, voluntarily taking them myself to get shots at the same time! So, there's that.

In the waiting room, where we waited an hour and a half in a PACKED house (which really never happens there), Josie made friends with a bunch of kids, played, jumped, and generally had a much fun as she does at a library storyhour. Much fuss was made about Genevieve's cute Santa jammies and general cuteness. A nurse from our office finally ended up hustling us into an open room in the doctor's office next door because they were so slammed, and Josie waved good-bye to all her new friends like a beauty queen. Things were going well.

We had had long talks before the appointment about how Josephine would get her shot first so she could be brave and show her little sister that it was no big deal. When the nurse came in with the shots, Josephine just climbed right up on the table and started shoving her legs in the direction of the nurse, even though I was still trying to sign all the paperwork. She said, "Josie ready for a little poke!" (I know -- I have a hard time saying it out loud, but a nurse called it that a few months ago and now Josie uses the term and ... ugh ... but, whatever.) She was ready.

She got the shot without flinching, then said, "Josie got a little poke. Didn't hurt at all. See sister?" and when I pulled her pants back on, she hopped down, and said, "Josie all ready!"

Seriously. She was a rockstar. Why I was worried is beyond me, since she only cried with ONE vaccination her entire life. ONE. And it was really just a few-second wail that ended abruptly when she said, "Got a poke. Where's sticker?" the kid is just tough as freaking nails. I seriously worried that she had that "doesn't feel pain" disease when she got her first one as a newborn and was like "What?"

So, Josie gave Genevieve a pep talk, I got her all ready, then hid my face and told her to look at the nurse (The nurse gives the shot, not me, so don't be looking in my eyes while you feel pain, kid! I'll swoop in when the shot is over and save you! I'm the good one! REMEMBER THAT.), and poke, ten seconds of crying, everyone is fine. Nurse leaves the office telling two sweet girls that they are brave and awesome. I was feeling pretty dang good. 

I told Josephine she needed to put on her coat so we could leave, and, I swear, I could see it in her eyes: panic, but quick thinking was afoot.  


Josephine screamed bloody murder, ran away, and wedged herself between a table and the garbage can, frantically screaming "NO GO HOME! I WANT TO PLAAAAAAAAAAY! WE LIKE IT HERE!!!!! SEE DDDDDDOOOOOCCCCCCTTTTTTOOOOOORRRRRRRRR!!! PLAY PLAY PLAY!!!!!"


Her screaming made Genevieve wail, and all attempts to get her coat on her while whispering gently in her ear were failing miserably. Finally I gave up, scooped her up into my lap, and started trying to force her coat on her arms, all while saying sweet things in her ear. 

Here's where I almost lost it, but the reason I almost lost it is because I almost starting laughing. While she continued to to shout "SEE MY DOCTOR! SEE MY DOCTOR!" through the tears and snot, she employed two techniques: her old standard, "the melt" and a new one I have never seen before. She pressed her palms together, as if in prayer, and LOCKED them there. No pulling on my part could get her hands apart, and therefore I couldn't put her coat on her arm, could I? 

I know, highly unprofessional, but I almost lost it. Where did she learn that? And dang, that girl is nothing if she isn't persistent and creative. Good for her, anyway.

In the meantime, she was thrashing around like I was performing an exorcism and Genevieve's wailing was picking up steam. I finally got the coat on her, grabbed our stuff, grabbed the carseat, hoisted Josie up onto my hip, and threw open the door to run out of there. Here's the only moment that actually made me mad all day: As I opened the door, there stood two nurses, mouths hanging open, staring at me like I was a murderer, and one was SHAKING HER HEAD at me. COME ON, even if this is your first week in the biz, I imagine you have heard at least one two-year-old meltdown. Cut me a freakin' break.

I told them she was actually crying because she didn't want to leave. They looked even more disgusted with me. We ran. 

THEN she realized she hadn't gotten a sticker for her efforts, and boy howdy, that was not going to fly. I ran her into our office and to the window, where I was ignored by the new receptionist (I am not a fan), so I let myself back and told one of our favorite nurses that Josephine didn't get a sticker. Two of them fell all over themselves giving her stickers. She took her sweet time choosing one, and again, we ran. 

So many tears. So much snot. Not because of the shot. NOOO, because she was HAVING TOO MUCH FUN AT THE DOCTOR'S OFFICE. On top of that, she was pissed that she didn't actually get to see her doctor. (We love our doctor. Love her, love her, lover her. Josephine has always enjoyed going to see the doctor, but our new doctor? Man. At our last visit, Josephine climbed up on a stool so she could be eye to eye with her while she hugged her.)

Seriously. I'm having too much fun getting shots! Take me back! Take me back!

Love her. Love this crazy kid.

OH, and P.S. I am still VERY INTERESTED to hear your Christmas book recommendations.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Book Collection

Something my mom did when I was little and I just loved was she always packed seasonal books away, only bringing them out in the weeks leading up to said holiday. She did this for Halloween, Easter, and, most notably, Christmas. It was so exciting to see the clear vinyl bag with blue plastic handles make its way out of the attic and next to the tree. Every year we would sort through them, shouting, "Oh yeah! This one! And this one! And this one's my favorite!" Such a good idea.

Therefore, I had to get in on the fun, too. We don't have a ton yet, as I just started getting serious about it this year, but I got very proud the other day when the box I decorated got filled to capacity with the addition of a few new ones I bought (and three library books, if I'm being honest).


In continuing with the spirit of Josephine's Books (I have a LOT of updating to do on that list. I'll do it soon, I swear!), I would love to show you the collection as it stands and ask for your recommendations! Which Christmas books MUST we add to our collection? (links to books I could find for purchase online)


Merry Christmas: A Sparkle 'n' Shimmer Book, The Care Bears' Night Before Christmas (from my childhood), Winnie the Pooh's Sweet Christmas, Winnie the Pooh's Twelve Days of Christmas, Clifford's First Christmas(ours is a boardbook),
, Jingle Bells (A Little Golden Book, from my childhood)


My First Night Before Christmas: A Touch & Feel & Sparkle Book
The Sweet Smell of Christmas (Scented Storybook) (from my childhood! Still has scratch n sniff smells left!)
, Garfield's Night Before Christmas (from my childhood)The Twelve Days of Christmas in Michigan


How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Santa Claus: The Legend of Santa Claus (from my childhood! Remember the movie? It's on Netflix Instant Play!), Merry Christmas, Curious George


Little Christmas Elf (from my childhood), O Little Town of Bethlehem: A Pageant of Lights (otherwise known as Josie's "new good favorite best book." Can't find it online, but has been spotted at Meijer [smaller size] and Sam's Club), Merry Christmas, Splat (I just bought this one the other day, and she is ALL ABOUT IT. We have read it about ten times today.)


The Night Before Christmas (sorry, just couldn't wade through the 25,000+ versions of this on Amazon and Barnes&Noble to find this exact one. It's a good one though. Jeremy labored over it, wanting to get the "perfect one." This one is very perfect.), Buon Natale, piccolo Gesu! (My mother bought this in Italy last year.)

And ... here's where I horrify some of you:

The Zombie Night Before Christmas

Josie hasn't found it yet. It's more for Jeremy and I, obviously, but it's a Christmas book, so in the box it goes! I must have SOME order.

Okay, so which Christmas books are your favorites? Which do you love to read to your favorite little people? Which do you remember from childhood? What should I add to the list so I can get a new, bigger box next year and fill it up?
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