Monday, January 31, 2011

Little Lillie

Have I mentioned before how much I love babies???  Other peoples babies???  I do, I love them.  They are a ray of sunshine that never stops shining.  They are edible and sweet and innocent and just made up of good stuff.

Today one of my dearest friends stopped by for a quick play date.  Mandie has just recently moved back to Lodi (Yeah!) and now I get to watch her darling daughter grow up.  She is so precious. 

Last week Ryan said to me.... "I wish we had a girl in our family."  I said, "We do....Me!"  He looked at me and said, "No, silly, a girl like Matthew and me. A little one."  I then responded, "Ahhh.  Yeah, that's never going to happen."  So you understand when we have any chance to fill a void...we fill the void. 

Baby Lillie :)

Matthew had so much fun playing with her.

And this is what Ryan looked like during the entire visit.  Passed out on the couch.  He woke up about five minutes after Mandie and Lillie left and said, "Mom, when's that baby going to finally get here?"

Love :)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

That Mom.

I have a small confession to make.  I am that mom that others moms talk about behind her back.  I'm that mom that shows up and doesn't engage in idle chit chat to pass the time.  I don't to sit and talk about the milestones that my kid has or has not passed.  I don't want to talk about what I feed them for every meal of the day and how I lose sleep thinking whether or not they have a balanced nutritional meal.  I also don't want to talk about school, grades, ability levels or teachers.  This is the only extra curricular activity we've got going.  No music classes, no golf lessons, no Kindermusic...nada.  We are a one sport per kid family.  And I'm that mom that shows up, book in hand, wanting peace and quiet while I watch my kid do his thing.

Sunday nights Matthew has basketball practice and Rich and I take turns who takes him.  I enjoy taking him.  It is an uninterrupted hour during the weekend that I just veg.  I bring a book, occasionally look up and see how he doing, and then I go back to reading.  The parents that surround me, well, they are mostly from my school.  So I get it, they talk about me and I am 100% fine with it.  They must say..."Look, it's Meanie Marini.  She is so unsociable.  Could she sit any farther from us?"  And to tell you the truth, if I thought it was appropriate, I'd probably be in the car waiting until he was done.  Talk about me all you long as I don't have to talk back.  I am an extremely social person, however, I am not the "we did this" and "we have that" and "oh yes, I've heard about that", and "how did you like this", person.  Now, if someone wants to engage me in conversation about The Good Wife or Real Housewives of Beverly Hills or House or Modern Family....I'm your girl.  Pull up a seat and let's go through our season passes.  But it's the moms that are constantly keeping score that drive me crazy.  I want to turn to them and say, "Listen....when your kid is my kids neurosurgeon, then props to you and your nutritional organic only meals!  You win!"  But until then, let's just see how they make it through elementary school, shall we?

I don't remember this growing up.  Maybe because I was the kid and now it's because I have kids, right?  And this isn't going away, is it?  This will be here forever, correct?  I get that.  I am coming to terms with it.  I don't really worry about what people say about me...I'm a big girl.  I worry about my kids who will inevitably be competing against the kids whose parents keep a score card in their back pocket.  That is a tall order for anyone.  It's almost as if we have set a bar so high, at such a young age, that it is impossible to reach.  And they are only seven.  This isn't going away, is it?

Monday, January 24, 2011

Weekend fun and catch up!

Whew!  I'm exhausted and it's only Monday.  And, to be honest...I really didn't do much this weekend.  On Saturday Matthew had his basketball game.  Here are pictures as promised.  I was a big girl and charged my camera and everything because my sister was not happy with me and my lack of pictures.  She's pretty bossy when she is a couple thousand miles away.

Here is the infamous tunnel that the players come out of.  Matthew was the first to point out that the smoke screen and cheerleaders were not there on Saturday and it is not as exciting to come out to just us and no smoke or girls cheering.  We thanked him for his sincerity.

Bad shot...but it's him. :)

Here is Matthew guarding Dante.  Dante was on Matt's flag football team and he was so excited to be matched up with him. 

Break away.

I took several shots of Matthew shooting to give him proof that he stops 10-15ft. short of the basket to take a shot.  Lay-ups are not necessarily his favorite thing.  Shocking!

A little defense.

Again, can you see the basket in the shot?  Nope.

Another break away.

Finally....a lay-up!

And basket in sight.

Saturday night we went to St. Anne's crab feed.  Look who graced us with his presence.....

I need to give props to my sister-in-law Stacy for sharing a recipe for jello shots. I made them on Saturday for the crab feed and they were a HUGE hit. Not just with our table, but I shared them with my in-laws and their friends too. And...thanks to those and some other drinkies, pictures like this happened....

The boys.....much later that night.

And because I want him to come back on a more regular basis....I will NOT be posting other pics that I took because that would be mean and unlike him....I am nice with picture posting.

And finally...two weeks ago on January 7th, Matthew came up to me and said...."Mom!!!  My tooth is loose!!!"  I was soooo excited for him.  We (really mostly just him) have been waiting for so long for that first loose tooth.  I wiggled it and told him it wasn't really ready because it was barely loose and also because we were leaving for the weekend and we didn't want him to lose it while we were gone.  (I know, I know, parents of the year)  So, in order to hit my point home...I told him that it would really hurt if he tried to take it out too early and that he would be really sorry if he pushed it too soon (which is actually the truth, right?? :).  So, in true Matthew form...he has been VERY conservative in his loosening of the tooth in fear that it will hurt and cause pain.  We are now passed the two week mark of having that ONE loose tooth and it is still firmly in his mouth.  ANY other would have been out in days.  Not Matthew!  So, I will keep you updated on this long, drawn out process of losing his very first tooth!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Upward...and beyond

It's 9:30am, Saturday morning, a few hours before Matt's first basketball game with the Upward Basketball Program.  This is a new program for us...a Christian based program that teaches not only skills of the game, but also "skills" on how to live your life as a humble and good human being. 

About a month ago we had a parents meeting at the church that walked us through what the program was like, what to expect, and what their main goals were for the season.  It was all great!!  I thought this is a fantastic program!  And then they showed a video presentation of last years season and some of the highlights.  When they got to the part of explaining there is a tunnel that leads out from the locker room that the kids run out of right after there name is called is where I stopped listening.  I thought to myself...Tunnel?  Name announced?  A jog around the court?  This is going to be a problem.

You see, I have lived this scenario SEVERAL dozen times in my living room.  Matthew comes over (dressed head to toe in his Lakers uniform) hands me a hair brush microphone and says..."I'm going to go down the hall.  Don't announce me until the end, because they always announce the best players at the end."  So like a good mother I announce all other mediocre players first and then in a deep loud voice I say, "And from Lodi, California....last, but never least....CRYBABY KOBE BRYANT!!!!!"  And then that leads to him running in and yelling at me to "STOP IT AND PLAY THE GAME RIGHT!!"  So, then I play fair and call out his name and he comes down the hall and does a couple of laps around the living room giving me and ten others imaginary high fives.  Do you see where I am going with this? 

If not, then they me tell you what he said to me last night...

Matt:  Mom, you know tomorrow when they announce our names and we go out and run around the court?

Mom:  (Deep sigh)  Yes...

Matt:  What do you think my dance should be?

Mom:  (Spitting food from her mouth) Dance?  What do you mean DANCE???????

Matt:  You know, I need some kind of dance once I come through the tunnel.

Mom:  No, no, no, no, no, no.  No dancing.  No dancing.  Matthew, when they announce your name, you smile and follow your team out and listen to whatever direction your coach gives you.  NO DANCING, PLEASE!

Matt:  (Smiling) Alright.

Because I wanted him to digest that for the night, I waited until this morning to ask him to make sure he does three important things today.  1.  Play defense.  2.  Pass the ball.  3.  Congratulate each teammate after every shot, regardless of if they made it or not.  He said, "Okay!"  And as he was walking away, I threw in... "And remember no dancing!"  (rolling his eyes)  "I know Mom!"

Stay tuned....

Okay, were home and it was great.  As you will see in the ONE picture below, that Matt did not dance his way out of the tunnel.  He had a great game with a couple of really good blocks and he made several baskets. 

Today was the first time that Matthew has played a game where they kept score.  And they had a 10, 9, 8....count down for final shot.  The entire game I could see his eyes watching the score and the clock.  This will become his focus.  I guarantee you that these two things will become his obsession and his play will revolve around it.

And I deserved to be fired.  I didn't have the camera charged.  And I forgot my cell phone at home.  So this is the only picture I have from this morning from our camera.  The other is in the bathroom right before we left.

Please try to ignore the toilet seat in the back. 

There he is....look closely...coming out of the tunnel.  Better pics next week---PROMISE!!!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A Last Hoo-rah!!!

This past weekend we headed up to Tahoe for a quick get away for two reasons.  1.  To restore our sanity from the craziness of the holidays.  2.  Mama Guido (Kelly) is happily 32 weeks pregnant and wanted a weekend away to relax before "VinnieLouie" shows up.  And before you go further...yes, her actual last name is Guido and no, "VinnieLouie" is not the name of her unborn son.  That's just what we refer to him as and we like it.  We like it a lot! 

We hit the jackpot with fabulous weather.  We really could not have times this trip better because it was sunny, gorgeous....and freezing cold!  I am including these two pictures for a couple of reasons.  1.  There were these giant icicles hanging right outside the dining room.  2.  If I go missing, start with this guy first.  His first reference of this being used as a perfect weapon BECAUSE IT COULD MELT is a little unnerving! 

Again...this guy is a bit sketchy!

Who needs to run to the store for ice???  We've got ice!

This is about as far as we got out the backyard. the preggo lady was in charge of bringing breakfast.  There were enough breakfast goods for us and five other families.  24 LARGE muffins.  A large coffee cake.  A large tin full of cinnamon rolls.  And, because she was afraid she didn't think of everything....she made homemade chocolate chip banana muffins.

And here is Rich and I after our walk...that had to take place after we ate breakfast.  Did I mention she brought FIVE different types of muffins????

And just look at these two hot messes.  This is Jason and Anthony....skiers extraodinaire!  These two brave souls...who hadn't skied in about ten years, decided to hit the slopes and successfully come back unharmed.  We were so happy that they both arrived back home without injury.  My favorite part of this picture is Ja-Locke sporting his Seahawks beanie on the day that Seattle beat New Orleans.  My hubby, who hasn't skied a day in his life, stayed with his sister-wives back at the cabin and gossiped with us about anything and everything.  While Jason was busy hitting the slopes, his wife was screaming loud enough for him to hear 15 miles away at the top of Heavenly, as his beloved team was kicking a little "a" and taking names.  A good time for all.

Finally, here are Rich and Anthony trying to bring a little winter back to the valley. 

Kelly...we hope you enjoyed your last childless getaway.  As we understand your need for a little peace before the arrival of your darling baby boy...we just can't wait to meet him and hold him and welcome him to the world.  Enjoy your last couple of weeks with Leah and treasure the time you have with her before she becomes the big sister of the household.

Thursday, January 6, 2011


Ahhh...this boy.  This boy is the sweetest young thing ever.  Shy, funny, mysterious, competitive, fierce, darling, etc...the list could go on.  And now he is four. 

Luckily he doesn't have the memory his older brother has, because if he did he would remember that hitting the age of "4" gets you a special privilege.  A certain privilege in the bathroom that I had promised him about six months ago.  I had promised him that one day, when he turns four, he may "stand" in the bathroom.  I had to do this to get him to STOP standing because he was CLEARLY not ready and I was done cleaning up after him.  He has completely forgotten about it!  Thank God!

Lucky boy...his very own DS.  I really feel this gift is for the whole family.  Not because Rich and I will play with it, no...this additional DS will end MANY fights that have occurred because there was only one in the house. 

Ryan got a "little" Wii controller.  Clearly he is at a loss for words.

New Wii game.  We (us adults on New Years Eve) had to test out how fun this game was.  Three hours of straight intensive play says it was a hit! 

More Lego's!!

Wait...who's at the door?  And what does he have?  Papa Rich with a new bike!

All ready to go!

Here are his animal friends that he loved playing with. 

This proves that imagination play still has it's fans!

Happy Birthday Ry!

Does the look on his face make anyone else laugh?  Serious, embarrassed, patient....all things he is and isn't.

Love this boy.  Happiest of Birthdays Ryan!!!  We love you!!

New Years Day---Snow and Bowling!

On New Years Day, we city folk decided to head up the ol' mountain and try to find some snow.  Even though we had a crazy storm the day before, we ended up having to go farther than we had originally planned. 

Here's my one complaint about going to the snow.  A lot of work...for a VERY limited time in the snow.  You have the set of clothes that they wear in the car, the added clothes for when you get there, and then an entire new set of clothes for the way home.  Total time in the snow....approximately five to six minutes before hypothermia sets in.  We are city ALL those clothes I just mentioned are not always snow friendly!

Ryan dressed and ready.

 Matthew dressed and ready!
We stopped on an actual road that was off the highway.  A full functioning road for the people who still live here,  and a couple of them do not care for our "let's just pull over here and play" decision.  We felt good about it because we weren't the only ones with this idea.  All those people in the background of this picture had the same idea.  Here are the boys trying to find a good hill.

Ryan is fearless.  Fearless to the point of worry.

First run of the day!

I think he likes it!

Matt's first run.

His mouth open...again.

 However inappropriate this picture is...the only reason I put it up us for my niece Mikayla.  She knows the reason and I'll leave it at that!
  Guess who had the toastiest toes around!!  I got two pairs of boots for Christmas and I am not ashamed to say that I have either my black  boots or my brown boots on every day since.  I am in warm feet heaven.

It's apparently a good idea to just close your eyes and not look when you can't control what is going to happen.

And finally...a snow trip would not be complete without some type of injury.  On Ryan's last run he slid right into a pile of snow and it bruised his cheek.  Time to go!

McNuggets make everything better.

On our way down the hill, we decided to stop and bowl.  Ryan wanted to go bowling for his birthday, so we stopped at a bowling alley in Sutter Creek.


One person bowling, two people trying to steer the ball with their bodies.

A strike for the young man.  (The bumpers help)

 Soooooo excited!!!!

Last shot of the day!