Sunday, March 26, 2017

Patterns Galore!

With Ava, I'm past the point of picking out her outfits in the morning. I give her some guidance, based on the forecast, and 99% of the time, her chosen outfit will pass. Every once in a while, I have to to put my foot down, but usually, she's presentable. On picture days, though, I make the choice!

Last week, I was in her room, checking in on her before-school progress, and I happened to notice that her outfit had stripes, polka dots, and leopard prints...all at the same time. I thought it was interesting enough that I put it on Facebook...and it turns out that my friends with little girls see the same thing in their house, too! I love the creativity and the lack of concern about what other people will think about her. I hope she maintains that as she's transitioning into the next phase of her life.

G, on the other hand is very concerned about matching. He always wants to make sure his socks have at least one color in them that is on his shirt. Unless his Toy Story alien socks are clean...he'll wear those with any outfit! Yesterday, I let him choose his own outfit, and he ended up with a black and green TMNT shirt, and a pair of blue and gray camo sweatpants. win some, you lose some.

G's daycare hosted "Breakfast with a Friend" last week, so I dined with my little guy. We had donuts, bananas, pastries, and juice boxes. It was a great way to start our day! Then, when I got to work, a coworker had donuts for her birthday, and then a team who moved into a recently renovated space had donuts, as well. Donuts galore! (I only had the mini donut with G, though.)

Ava and I are going to Beauty and The Beast today...I think I'm more excited than she is! Next week is her spring break, and one of their field trips is to see that at the movies, as well. Lucky girl! Last night, she and I stayed up late to watch the second Harry Potter movie. It's taking us a while to get through them, since they are so long...but we're enjoying the time we get to spend together. Lots of movies lately!

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Dude, Where's My Limo?

I have always struggled with planning for Ava's birthday each year.  I get very, very anxious while planning it...What if no one shows up?  What if there isn't enough to do?  What if the kids all hate it?  (So strange, because I couldn't really give two hoots about what people think,,,,but for some reason, when it comes to Ava's birthday party, it's a massive concern for me.  She certainly is never this worried about it!)

In any case, we've gone the "go-somewhere-and-pay-for-a-space-and-activities" route.  Last year, we hosted the party at our house...and it was chaos.  She's already started thinking about what she wants to do this year.  I've had to reign her back in a bit - such grandiose plans!

Ava's attended several parties for one of her little friends, and I've always been impressed with how they manage to keep things fun and entertaining, and don't visually stress out about it.  Haha.  So, a few weeks ago, I RSVPd yes for Ava to attend her friend's birthday party (held yesterday.)  The dad and I exchanged several emails, including details on a surprise where a limo was going to pick up each of the friends at their houses and take them to the Mall of America for the party.  I did such a good job and didn't tell anyone in this house (including Scott) about this surprise...because I wanted it to be a surprise!

So, yesterday rolls around, and I'm super excited for Ava, and she doesn't know why.  We were waiting in our office, and I kept nonchalantly looking out the front window.  Except I guess I wasn't that subtle because Ava wanted to know why I kept looking up any time a car drove by.  So, the pickup time comes...and goes.  And I start to get a bit nervous, but not too much, because ground transportation can be off by a few min.  But, once 15 min rolled by without the limo starting to show up, I was concerned...there's no way they could have been that badly delayed.  And then I get an email from the dad.  Ava was the last stop, and the driver forgot to pick her up!  The driver had the music up, and couldn't hear all of the kids who were yelling that he forgot about their friend! 

After some frantic phone calls to me, the dad advised that the limo would come back and get her once the drop off was done, unless I could bring her up to the party at the Mall of America?  Ah no...Scott was out of town, and G was napping.  So, another frantic (and a bit teary) phone call to my mom proved to have the answer.  I let the dad know that YES, the limo could come back to get Ava, but what I didn't tell him is that I would be following them in my car (not crazy about having my kid get into a limo by herself, without any adults.)  My mom came over to watch G, while I went out for this drive.  I didn't want Ava to miss out on the limo ride, because it's such a cool thing...this way, we got the best of both worlds.

So, the big long limo came to get Ava...she hopped in, and I started my spy mission.  Except it turns out that I would be a horrible spy.  I somehow managed to get right in FRONT of the limo.  Then I made it through a light that he didn't, since he was driving extra slow (that's a good thing, right?)  So, after we left Apple Valley, I never saw him again, even though I pulled over on the highway to wait for him to pass.  I'm not sure how I missed a big white stretch SUV, but I did!  Ava had put on her phone watch before she left, and I kept checking in with her to make sure she was ok.  Plus, I used the auto-locate and auto-answer functionality of her watch to keep tabs on her. Traffic by the MOA was crazy, so she didn't actually make it to the party until 3:15 (1.5 hours after her pick up time!)  The dad came and met her at the limo, and they made a big deal of her entrance into the party. 

She had a great time at the party - the Microsoft Store was a hit!  They played video games, had cake, opened presents, and had a blast.  She was sad that she missed most of the party, but I tried to talk her through the situation.  The dad felt so, so bad...he apologized to me at least 10 times yesterday, so I don't want Ava to linger on the screw-up, but instead focus on the fun that she DID have.

When the limo came to drop her off at the house, there were a few neighborhood kids walking by, and they stopped to watch the proceedings...they looked impressed, and Ava loved every minute of it!  The dad hopped out of the limo to apologize in person, and then the limo started to take off without him.  For real, that driver needs to pay better attention!

So, now Ava's wanting to have her birthday party at the Apple Store and go to Nickelodeon Universe and have a sleepover with all of her friends and their American Girl dolls and and and...etc, etc, etc.  OMG, I think we need to work on keeping it simple!

Did I mention that her friend's dad is the president of the PTO, and I just attended my first meeting on Thursday night?  So, he's acutely aware of who I am, especially since I was in the front row on Thursday, and had asked some questions.  On a side note, I enjoyed the PTO meeting and am interested in attending more of them...they desperately need help and volunteers for some of their school programs/projects.  I went to the meeting with a neighborhood friend and we agreed to volunteer together on some things...more fun with friends!

G's listening ears appear to be broken. He's having a hard time following directions at daycare AND at home.  His teacher brought it up to me when I picked him up on Friday - mostly because that's not like him.  He's a mischievous little guy...I didn't realize how well-behaved Ava is until I had a little stinker like him!

Last night the three of us enjoyed a movie and then the two kids took a bath together in our big bathtub.  Poor G never gets to take baths...he always showers with Scott, so he was having a blast last night in the tub.  They were both so good last was wonderful to hang out with both of them, and give them so many kisses and cuddles.  Now that they're getting older, it's getting easier to watch them both - plus, Ava's a great helper.

And onto some super fun news, I booked our summer trip to NY! Ava, my mom, and I will be heading out in mid-June to stay for a looong weekend in Brooklyn.  Having my mom there will be a blessing, plus we'll be visiting with my aunt (my dad's sister) so it'll be some great family catch-up time, as well.  I also started researching for the trip to Napa in August and have some ideas!  FUN!

Ok, this post is long enough...I had a lot to say about the limo. Happy Sunday! Don't forget to turn the clocks forward one hour!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

This is America!

The theme of Ava's third-grade music program on Thursday night was a timely one. It was all about America and what it means to be an American. Ava opened the music program with the first spoken line, "This is America and we are Americans."  They sang ten songs about America and kept the show fun with waving flags, zippy kazoos, and creative dance routines. And, as my dad pointed out, the kids are now old enough that you can actually understand the words they are singing! I am so proud of Ava for volunteering to speak in front of the crowd...she did a great job!

Ava is in a red shirt, right in the middle of the picture

G had fun at his first friends birthday party last weekend. It was at a fitness facility in Lakeville. We had a hard time finding the building, and G could see that I was getting a bit frustrated with the directions. He kept saying that it was okay, and that we didn't need to go in, and that we could just go home. Having my little man try to comfort me was a was so cute! When we finally did find it, he was so excited to play with his friends, that he barely even took the time to give me a kiss goodbye! The only bummer was that they played a balloon game, and he apparently freaked out. He has never liked balloons, so we try to keep them away from him...but I had forgotten to tell the birthday girl's mom about that. Oh well, other than that, he had a blast!

We enjoyed Employee Appreciation Day at work on Friday (we received donuts for two unrelated things!) I even brought home a few for the kids as a special treat for breakfast yesterday. I love how they are both making the same face in this picture...

Scott's going to take advantage of this beautiful weather and smoke a pork shoulder outside today. I'm looking forward to being at home today...the last few Sundays have been really busy in the afternoon, so a day at home is much needed!