Wednesday, December 23, 2009

That Family

Well, it is Wednesday, December 23 and I have a confession. We finished shopping last night at approximately 11:54pm. And, when I say "we", I mean Rich, more specifically. Let me explain....

In Target last night, we were that family. That family that was walking VERY SLOWLY down every isle with their kids saying stuff like, "Wow! Isn't this cool? Would you want something like this???" or "Haven't you wanted one of these in the past? How about now???" We were that family who people pointed at and talked about. That family who was now on the clock because their two DARLING little boys almost refused to let their parents, I mean Santa, know what they wanted for Christmas.

Oh sure, don't think we weren't that family who didn't try shoving a Toys R Us magazine in their faces any chance we could....BECAUSE WE DID AND THEY STILL DIDN'T PICK ANYTHING OUT!! We tried everything. And yet, three nights before you know who was supposed to show up, we were that family walking the isles of Target trying to pass for the parents who actually lived with these two kids and knew what they might enjoy as a gift.

So, last night, after that family left Target with some things on a list, I sent Rich back to Target at 11:30pm and he picked up some things. I think we are good. I don't think we will win "that family" of the year, but I think we are okay.

Merry Christmas to all!!!!

Love The Marini's

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Del Osso Fun!

This past weekend we headed out to Del Osso Farm for some fun in the snow!! This is the first time our family has been to Del Osso and I highly recommend it. The main reason we went there was to go sledding on this man made hill of snow. It was really amazing how well it was set up, everything from wrist bands to appointment times so it wasn't overcrowded. There was plenty of other things to do like zip-lines, petting zoo, train and hay rides, bounce houses, tricycle races and so on. A family could easily spend several hours there and have a blast!!!

Our boys had an absolute blast because their cousins were there too. Mike and Stacy were down for the Marini Christmas weekend and it was their idea to head out to Del Osso and we are glad we went. Matthew and Ryan adore their older cousins and always have so much fun when they are in town.

Here are a bunch of pictures from our fun day.

Mikayla zip-lining

Michael zip-lining

She was so brave!

One of my favorite pictures from the day!

Boys being goofy!


Love it!

Sweet boy!

Here are the sledding pics. Please click on each picture to enlarge...especially on the one with Ryan and Rich to see that he is smiling and we are not torturing him.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Lifeskill Assembly

Here is Matthew getting an award yesterday for the Lifeskill of "Integrity." He looks like a pretty happy camper, don't you think?

Friday, December 11, 2009


Last night was Bingo with Santa at my school. As much as I try and stay away when I am not contractually obligated to be there, having Matt as a student there tends to damper my philosophy because he wants to attend all the fun stuff. As he should! If I weren't a teacher at his school, I would happily show up for everything. It is sometimes difficult taking off my teacher hat and putting on my mommy hat and feeling as if they are two separate beasts. They tend to go hand and hand. At least Ryan can come to these fun things because he HATES the fact he is not in school.

So last night we sat in a cafeteria filled with parents and kids, sipping punch, eating cookies, and playing Bingo. We had our Bingo cards and beans all ready to go. Ryan was eating M & M's out of the dish as if they were....well, M & M's. Matthew found a friend who asked him to come over and sit by him, which he did, and that left Ryan and I playing Bingo by ourselves. And when I say playing Bingo, I mean me trying to keep Ryan from moving the entire table knocking every ones beans off their cards.

As we are into the fourth or fifth game, I hear BINGO! I look up and it's Matthew! They go over and start reading his numbers and the second number he had was wrong. I felt SO BAD! He probably got so excited and then NOTHING. I swear to you....the very next number the man called was the one number he needed to finally, BINGO!!! He picked a free ticket to a Stockton Thunder Hockey game. He was pretty excited.

By this point Ryan is done. He has asked to leave several times, knocked an entire plate of marking beans on the floor and spilled punch once. HE IS DONE. But it is the blackout game and the last game of the night. So we are sitting there, waiting and waiting and all of a sudden..."BINGO!" IT IS MATTHEW AGAIN!!!!!! But this time it is the blackout game, and the prize is an iPod shuffle.

Let me tell you...the mommy hat I was wearing was still on and pulled down tight. So they start calling the numbers and get through all of the B's and I's and my heart starts pounding. I was so worried that he misunderstood a number and it would be a repeat of earlier in the night. So, we get through the N's and G's and now my heart is pounding so hard that it feels as if it is pulsating in my ears. I really could care less if he gets this prize, at this point I am so afraid he is going to get through all these numbers and somehow not have them and be terribly disappointed! Well they got through all the numbers and BAM!!!! HE WON!!!

I was so pleased for him. Kathy this morning said the look on his face was priceless. She said he just looked so happy. Now he is obsessed with putting music on it and he has no idea what songs he wants. He told me, "Can I hear all the songs and then pick the ones I like?" I said, "What do you mean all the songs?" He says, "You know, you can go through all the songs that play on the radio and we can buy the ones I like." I started laughing and said...."There are millions of songs out there, you are going to have to be a little more specific." And what came next out of his mouth??? "What does specific mean?" I said, "Never mind. Just tell me when you hear one you like and we'll look it up."

This is going to be fun.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Basketball Season

I am a little late posting some pics from basketball. Of course, this is Matthew's favorite sport and he is enjoying it every Saturday. What is really cool is that most of the kids on the team are from Reese, so he gets to play with friendly faces.

Last Saturday, the world stood still. Did you notice? Yes, the Earth stopped spinning on its axis because Matthew's teacher, Mrs. Schatz, came to his game. He really could have cared less who else came to see him, she was the star.

If I haven't said this before....Matthew LOVES his teacher. Like stalker, loves his teacher. He loves to go and help her in the morning before school and waits with baited breath until she asks him to help. If her car is in the parking lot before us when we get to school in the morning, every day he says, "Mrs. Schatz is working early today." And it is the same at the end of the day if she is still there when we leave, "Mrs. Schatz is working late again today." Seriously....EVERY DAY!

When she came this Saturday, she was there to see Matt, but also three of the girls in her class play on the same team and they had a game at the same time, so she got to see them. If her presence wasn't enough, she brought each child a sprinkled donut from the donut shop as a treat for after. Clearly her and I have different teaching styles. :)

Here is Matthew and Mrs. Schatz.

Here are the girls (Tabitha, Elle, and Katelin)

Couple shots from the game.

And of course, the shoes. The shoes make everything cool.


How much do I love that it snowed in Lodi this morning????? TRIPLE LOVE IT! This morning, about 7:15 it snowed in Lodi. This video was shot at school when the only people at school are teachers and office executive assistants (hi ladies)...and poor Matthew because he has to come with me and I go so early. Turn up the volume...that is Matthew's teacher saying "This is SO COOL" tons of times and I agree!

Here is Matthew trying to catch a snowflake!

Friday, December 4, 2009

STAR of the week!!!

This week Matthew was STAR of the week. He was SO excited! I mean he set out all of his things to take for show and share, filled out his questionnaire the minute he got it, and drew his self portrait in full color. He had been waiting for such a long time to be picked and it was finally his week!!

Monday morning he wakes up early, gets dressed, comes into the bathroom to bush his teeth and that is when I see it. PINK EYE! Now, I have been a teacher for seven years now and I know pink eye when I see it. I immediately tell Rich to look at his eye because I now know he cannot go to school and he needs to see a doctor to start eye drops right away. Rich, being the retail guy, actually has no experience at all with pink eye and informs me that he is fine, and take him to school. I simply said, "YOU ARE KIDDING ME, RIGHT????" Because I know how it is going to play out...he will get to school, his teacher will see it, send him to the office and make him come home immediately. But, Rich wasn't having it. So, Matthew goes to school. And by 9:30 that morning, we are calling my mom to come and get him because he cannot be at school.

You understand how devastating this was. The STAR gets to do everything during the week. He gets to get the lunch cards in the cafeteria. He gets to run errands with the friend of his choice. All of these things are incredibly important in the life of a first grader...and this first grader is now banned from campus until he has had 24 hours of antibiotics in his eye! He was heartbroken.

Here is where I will praise his teacher to no end. There are certain teachers who are perfect for a grade level and Matthew's teacher is exactly where she should be. She made up the two days he missed in the three days he attended school this week. He adores her and I am so grateful for that because she understood what he needed out of this week and was so willing to make it up to him.

The best part of the week was when Rich and I went into the class. We went in to share pictures and favorite stories. I read his favorite book to the class. He had brought his little dog to share, his Whitehorse snow globe, his photo album, and a snowman. So what started out to be a disaster, turned out to be a success.

I am growing to love all of the kids in his class. And now Rich can put faces to names.

Rich sharing his favorite stories.

Here is Matthew passing off the STAR folder to Logan for next week.