Football, Food, and Favorite Faces

As a lover of football I can't wait for this weekend. While my team didn't make it to the championship game (maybe next year, Chiefs) I'm still excited. It doesn't get much better than getting together with friends, tossing back a few beers, eating your weight in different fruit/veggie/cracker dips, and watching a good football game.

With that said, let's get going this week's highlights.

1. In keeping with the Super Bowl theme… Random fact we just learned this week: the guy who picks up our recyclables every week is Richard Sherman's dad. Love Richard Sherman or hate him, it's still kind of a cool connection.
2. You can't attend a Super Bowl party without bringing some sort of goodie to share. I thought about the ever so popular JalapeƱo Corn Dip, or the obligatory Crock Pot Queso Dip. But, I think I'm going to go with something a little less traditional. Individual fruit pizzas - yes, please.
3. Speaking of fruits and dips… Marcus has been ALL OVER apples and peanut butter fruit dip. I've shared this before, but it is SO easy and SO good. Go getcha' some.
1/2 cup fat free vanilla Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp peanut butter
1/2 Tbsp honey
1/8 tsp cinnamon
Mix all together, dip fruit, enjoy!
4. It's been ages since I've been out with a group of girl friends. Thankfully, tonight I'm headed out to enjoy some good drinks and great company. GNO for the win!
5. Marcus has really become a little sponge. He is repeating everything we say and do. Lately, I cannot get enough of his 'pucker' face. He tries so hard when he is ready to plant a big fat kiss. I die.
Forgive the poor quality pics. Working with a wiggly toddler and an iPhone doesn't set one up for top notch photo quality.
Have a great weekend!

P.S. Go Seahawks!


Just Breathe

I lace up my shoes, giving them one last good tug.

Breathe. Just breathe.

The first few minutes slip by easily. Quickly.

Breathe. Just breathe.

One foot in front of the other.
A mile has gone by. Now two. I'm approaching the third.

Breathe. Just breathe.

The familiar burning that runs through my thighs and quads sneaks up on me. Yet, it is oh so welcome. I gladly push through it.

Breathe. Just breathe.

My pace is slower than normal, but I'm alright with it.

Breathe. Just breathe.

Before I know it the half way point has come and gone. I turn around and begin my trek back.

Breathe. Just breathe.

For these 60 minutes, this one glorious hour, I don't have to worry about anything. Except breathing.

Breathe. Just breathe.

My legs are quietly begging me to stop. My head refuses to give in to the whispered protests of my muscles. If I stop now all the stresses that have been mounting will invade this sanctuary I've created.

Breathe. Just breathe.

The miles come to an end. The run is over, at least for today.
Like a sweet, savory release, my head is a little clearer, my mood a little better, my attitude a little brighter.
Before I head back to the realities that face our every day I take one more minute.

Breath. Just breathe.


So What-ing

There are several things bouncing around in my head, and many things I simply need to get off my chest. I haven't said 'so what' in a while. I figured what better day to do so than today.

So what if…
THIS ARTICLE, by Amy Glass, has me absolutely FUMING. To the point in which I think there is literally steaming coming out of my ears. In this one post she was able to offend women everywhere. This excerpt, in particular, made me want to give the author a real piece of my mind: "You will never have the time, energy, freedom or mobility to be exceptional if you have a husband and kids."
Holy. Hell.

So what if…
… I do not understand, no do I remotely like this new fingertip fashion trend.
How are those claws even functional? Ridiculous.
…And so what if not liking the trend labels me as old and uncool.

So what if…
…I'm day-dreaming of a trip we have coming up in a few months. Some people have a "thing" for shoes, or jewelry, or whatever. My "thing" is swimsuits. I can't help but buy at least one or two new suits each summer. Here are a few that I've got my eye on.
So what if…
…I know I'm not going to rock any of above suits like the models are. I don't have the belly, or the boobs, let's be real.

So what if…
…This came in the mail yesterday for Marcus. It's *supposed* to be a birthday present for him. But, I highly doubt I'll be able to wait until March to put him in it.
Cali Cub shirt can be found >here<.
So what if…
…Just because Marcus already owns one "cub" shirt doesn't mean I don't think he needs one of these.
Mama Bear, Man Cub, and Mama's Cub shirts can all be found >here<.
So what if…
…I might just want the Mama Bear sweatshirt for myself.

So what if…
…The Hospital Hill Half Marathon in KC isn't for another four months, but I'm already planning the post-race celebrations with a few blogging ladies that I'm dying to meet in real life.
So what if…
…I'm already anticipating switching out our running shoes for our party pants!

So what if…
…I'm secretly (now not so secretly) not dealing with the stress of our unknown living situation very well. Thankfully, a friend posted this on her Facebook wall and it was all I needed to read to let me know things will be ok.

Lastly, so what if…
…These pictures of Marcus have no rhyme or reason behind them, besides the fact that I happen to think my kid is cute. These photos have only ever been on a camera memory card, or filed away on the computer. And, contrary to what Amy Glass may think, Marcus makes me exceptional.
So there you have it.

Happy Hump Day!


Petite Picassos

I'll be the first to admit that arts and crafts in our house don't happen often. Marcus makes enough of a mess with dirt, and mud, and water, and anything else he can get his little sticky hands on. It's not often we'll pull out paint or crayons. And, in my defense, Marcus sits still for said projects for about 10 minutes. I have a hard time justifying a huge mess for a meager few minutes. 

However, a few weeks ago while we were still in Kansas City, my sister-in-law suggested Marcus and his cousin try their hands with ceramic painting. Because my chid has zero finesse I wasn't too sure how the idea would pan out. But, it was freezing, we'd been stuck inside for what seemed like days on end, and we were all itching to get out of the house.

We set off to Paint, Glaze and Fire for snacks, story time, and painting ceramics.
After picking our surfaces to paint we listened to a short story, sipped on some hot chocolate, and got to business.
For a short while Marcus was into the whole painting process.
If I had to guess, we should have passed over the story and gotten right to the painting. Little man may have had a better time channeling his inner Picasso had we started with the mess making immediately.
Marcus' cousin, on the other hand, was quite the artist, and expertly painted his mug. Marcus took a few cues from his cousin, using different brushes and sponges. Mommy may have gotten her hand in on the action too (I didn't want a completely white plate)!
The finished products looked a little dull, but we were assured after the items spent the necessary time in the kiln they would come out shiny and beautiful.
Didn't the mug turn out great? I kind of want one with a "D" on it.

And, Marcus' plate is a masterpiece - at least in his mommy's eyes.
While the painting project was fun, secretly my favorite part was the lack of mess and clean up I had to deal with.


Homes, Haircuts, and SoCal Sunsets

With the roller coaster of emotions experienced this week one would think I'm pregnant. Pump your brakes. I'm not. But, seriously, one minute things are rainbows and roses, the next I'm freaking out wondering where we're going to be living in 60 days.

Is it too early for red wine? I kid. Sort of…

The weekend could not have come any sooner.

Time for Friday's five.

1. It's Friday. That alone deserves the top spot this week.

2. Last night there was an unbelievable sunset. I didn't get a picture, sadly. BUT, I was browsing through my photos and came across this one. Not sure how I haven't shared this, it's too gorgeous to keep hidden in my photo files.
3. Little man finally received another in-home hair cut. It's not the best, but it's better than the little shag-monkey he was beginning to look like.
4. Yesterday we looked at a few houses that were for sale. While we didn't find anything we loved at least we know what we don't like. And, the quest for a place to live marches on. Thankfully, Scott has recognized I'm conducting the Hot Mess Express when it comes to this whole housing situation. He's literally done all of the leg work in finding our next home. I'm forever grateful for all his work, and the fact that he puts up with understands my crazy.
5. To all the moms out there, watch this (here, I'll go ahead and pass you a tissue now). It's only 1:30, but it's worth every second. I pinky promise.
If you can't view the video click on >this link<.
(Barb, thank you, again for sharing this video and supplying yet another smile to my week!)

Happy Weekend!


22 Months Old!

Dear Marcus,
I swear just last week I was posting your 21 month update. This month may go down in the books as one of the fastest to pass us by. Then again, every month with you in our lives seems to just slip by us.

It is staggering what a little boy you've become. Your baby days are very much behind you, and you are running towards little-boyhood at full throttle.
Unofficial stats
Height: 34.5 inches (90th percentile)
Weight: 33 pounds (95th percentile)
Teeth: 17
Clothes: Transitioning to only 3T
Shoes: Size 7
Diapers: size 5
New words are coming out of your mouth every day. And, each time a new word is formed your dad and I are always so excited. We're always saying, "Did you hear that? He just said 'xxxx'!" Some of your new favorites include, "awesome,""hot dog,""more," "mouse," "oh man," "oh snap," "oopsie," "outside," and "snack". If I had to guess, your word count is easily at 30+ words. However, there are certain words we'll ask (read: beg) you to say, and you simply shake your head and reply, "No." You'll say what you want when you want, I suppose.

It comes as no surprise you would spend every waking moment outside. You love taking your tricycle out, however you're still learning how to maneuver the thing. If something has wheels, you love it. There are approximately 200 toy cars, trucks, and tractors spilling out from every corner in our house. You also have a sincere fondness for football. We are always outside throwing the football. On the rare occasion you actually want to sit still we will bust out the mess-free crayola kit and color. That activity usually lasts us all of five minutes. You've also really opened up in our Gymboree classes. You've begun participating in the organized activities, and even bust out a dance move or two during some of the songs.
There is only one show that you give two rips about, and that's Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. If it's not on then you could care less about TV, and that's just fine with me.

There is clearly separation anxiety when either your dad or I leave you. When I need to go somewhere without you I have to sneak away. Even then, when you notice I'm gone you pitch a short-lived fit.

Per the norm, you're still stuck on mac n cheese. You're enjoying eating hot dogs in hot dog buns. And dipping. Oh buddy, you love to dip food into ketchup. Fruits and veggies are rarely denied, but we're still working on getting you to each turkey and chicken.
I've found you eat best if I just let you graze throughout most of the day. The neighbors joke your nickname is "snacks," as I think you'd snack all day long if I let you.
Water and milk are the only fluids you consume. We've yet to introduce juices.

With all the illnesses we've dealt with this month your sleep has been less than stellar. You've spent more nights in the rocking chair with your dad or me, rather than in your crib. I'm guessing this is mostly because it was/is easier to breathe while more upright. I'm also guessing you quickly formed a bad habit of simply wanting to be held. Even your naps were primarily spent with one of us rocking you.
When you're healthy, a typical night is going to bed around 7:45 and waking right around 6:00 (however this morning you thought 4:30 was a perfectly acceptable wake-up time).
Naps happen around 1:30/2:00, and you generally sleep for 1.5-2 hours.
Little man, your smile brightens even my cloudiest days. There is nothing more in the world that I love than how you fill my heart. Each morning when I wake, and each night before I close my eyes, I thank God that you have completed me in more ways than I ever dreamed possible. 

You're pretty awesome, Little Man. 

I love you to the moon and back. Twice.



A Swift Kick in the Pants

It's hard to describe, or pinpoint, the emotions that have hit like a tidal wave these past few days. One minutes it's sadness, the next it's anger, and in another instant it's disbelief, shock, and denial.

Without drawing this out, our landlord called us Sunday. She informed us she had sold her town home. She also informed us the place is currently in escrow, and will likely close at the end of the month. We had no idea, and her news hit us like a ton of bricks.

The place we've called home for over two years will soon be a memory.

That brings my anxiety to an all-time high.

We knew this day would eventually come. In fact, we've been planning for it, and we thought we were ahead of the game. We even put an offer in to our landlord, but it wasn't enough to land us this place permanently.

A month ago we put an offer on a town home within our complex. However, the place is a short sale. While the seller's immediately accepted our offer, the bank is taking its sweet time. The term "short sale" should seriously be re-evaluated. It's anything but short.

Did I mention the anxiety?

For the past three nights I've fought a losing battle with sleep. As exhausted as my body is, my mind goes into overdrive. I just lie in bed thinking of how little control we have over this situation. I think of my sweet little boy, and how I just want him to have stability.

Everything will work out. It always does. This is just another one of life's tests. So, I'm tossing in the towel, I'm throwing up my hands, and I've been praying like I've never prayed before.

Just for chits and giggles, let's take a look at the difference in housing between L.A. versus Kansas City. Because, what's not to love about a swift kick in the pants?…


Sand, Sun, Surf (and a Popsicle)

We did something this weekend that we clearly don't do often enough.
After packing 428 toys, lunches for all three of us, two beach towels, a beach mat, enough sunscreen to coat an army of men, and a wagon to pull all our goods (perhaps that extensive list of items is why our trips don't happen as often as we'd like), we made our way to the beach!
It's been quite some time since Marcus has curled his toes in the sand.
He clearly missed the place as much as Scott and me.
Between shoveling sand, running amuck, and playing football, it was one excitement after the next for all of us.
It brought my heart so much joy to see him so jubilant.
This is my favorite picture from our beach-y weekend.
Initially, the booming crash of the waves frightened the little man. Thankfully, Dad came to the rescue to show Marcus the awesomeness of the ocean.
Marcus and I were able to sit down and share a Popsicle and a few quite moments together.
But, eventually the Popsicle became more captivating than Mom or Dad.
The child was in a salty, sweet, sandy heaven.
Scott was kind enough to keep a watchful eye on Marcus while I pretended to play photographer. Of the 131 photos taken from our day (I'm not even kidding), I think this one is my favorite of our afternoon view.
Not too often we can snag a picture of all three of us. 
I think the look on the little guy's face says it all.
The beach was a solid success.


Happy Marcus Monday!

There are bubbles everywhere, everywhere.
There are bubbles everywhere, everywhere.
There are bubbles in the air…
There are bubbles in your hair…
There are bubbles everywhere, everywhere.

Happy Monday!


Friday's Five

Jumping right into the fun that Friday brings:

1. Three-day weekend, here we come!

2. Fingers crossed a few of our weekend days look something like this:
3. The other night I was chatting back and forth with one of my favorite ladies, Stephanie, about ideas for Marcus' upcoming birthday party. Autocorrect… Isn't it a lovely thing?
4. Training for half marathons has started back up. YAY! As much as I loved and needed a break from running I am thrilled to get back to the pavement pounding.
My training schedule is up to date and I have a new toy to aid me in my miles.
5. Speaking of half marathons… This flight is about to be booked.
Hello Hospital Hill Half! It also marks the start of the Summer 2014 Macke Midwest Tour. Woohoo, bring on summer!

Have a great weekend!