Category Archives: Five for Friday

Five for Friday

1. Last weekend we met up with Addie’s buddies to catch “Toy Story” at the children’s museum. The peacefulness was fleeting, so we tried to capture a photo. This is the response when we called their names 18 times:

photo 1 And then, in a moment of sheer parenting brilliance, my friend said, “Pizza!”

photo 2

2. Realizing a dream of mine ever since creating a fake news broadcast in 7th grade. I had a total crush on my co-anchor before the project started, but one day I found him laying on the floor behind our news desk. His stomach hurt or he had a headache or his hair wasn’t cooperating—I don’t remember the details—but I do remember that THE FAKE NEWS WASN’T GOING TO DELIVER ITSELF, SIR. Some of us had to get up, adjust our ill-fitting blazer stolen from our father’s closet and get the grainy, VHS show on the road.

In the end, it didn’t work out with me and middle school Ron Burgundy.

photo 1

3. My little nuggets being adorable.

photo 5

Moments later Addison belly flopped off a pretend boat and burst into sobs.

4. Guys, it’s here. If you need us during the next 16ish weeks…

photo 5

5. We went to the children’s museum yet again this week (it’s air conditioned, get off my back) and when I came back to my car in the parking garage, this little gem was waiting for me.

photo 2

I have so many issues with this ticket. First, it was for an expired tag. It was September 1 and my tag expired at the end of August. One. Day. Late. C’mon, man!

And guess what was sitting right inside the car on my passenger seat???

photo 3

I can’t make this stuff up. I know, I know—it was my fault I didn’t put the new sticker on, but who writes a ticket for an expired tag in a parking garage?! I wasn’t in a fire lane, I wasn’t in one of those electric car-only spots and it was the straightest I’d parked since getting this mom-mobile. Had I been pulled over, I’m pretty confident I’d only get a warning since I could have handed the cop my new sticker that was 18 inches away from me. Oy.

The schedule this weekend looks quite kid-centric, but they’re only young once, right? (Thank God, says every toddler parent.)

Five for Friday

I’m trying to scarf down lunch, finish a work project, email Addison’s teacher, blog and catch up on my Friends marathon on Netflix all before heading off to car line to pick up Addison. Let’s get on with it, shall we?

1. Happy National Dog Day to this exquisite specimen.

maya

Allergies aside, she is the perfect companion and handles all of our neglect with the utmost grace and forgiveness. But the pool is never gonna happen, Clayton.

clayton maya

2. Despite all my hesitation, I took both kids to the museum this week AND stopped at the grocery store with them on the way home, even though it was past Addison’s nap time. It could have gone all sorts of sideways, but we made it in and out without incident! And then I picked up 24 ounces of positive reinforcement for myself.

dunkin

Speaking of treats, Clayton played golf last Friday, and I was responsible for getting the rest of us ready and over to Addison’s preschool orientation on time. It’s still quite the event to wrangle all of us into something presentable and arrive anywhere punctually, so I was handsomely rewarded for my efforts. Bribery is the key to any successful relationship.

godiva

3. Addison started K3 this week. It’s going to be an adjustment for all of us—new schedule, new classroom, new teacher, new friends–and I don’t think I realized just how startling that was going to be for her until after her first day. The bear hug and “I missed you Mommy!” warranted nothing less than an immediate cake pop.

addison first day2 Maybe by kindergarten I’ll be able to brush her hair without a steel cage death match.

4. We had the “jumping gym” to ourselves this week. It was the best of times…

nat asher

addie gym

addie gym2

it was the worst of times.

addie gym laying down

5. Clayton came home last night and told Addison, “I have a new pet for you.” Listening from the other room, my oh-no-you-didn’t index finger instinctively started wagging as I bolted onto the patio. Thankfully my husband did not have the death wish I was imagining and the new pet fit on the lid of his coffee thermos.

Meet Annie the ladybug.

annie ladybug

She has since taken a toddler-initiated trip over the pool fence and is probably, uh, resting peacefully in the pool.

I suggested Clayton play some more golf this weekend, so I am expecting at least another dozen pieces of gourmet chocolate heading my way very soon. Cheers to a delicious, manipulative weekend!

Five for Friday

Addie’s school was closed this week, so I had an atypical week with both kids mostly on my own. It went surprisingly well considering how I’ve been feeling lately. We ventured out of the house every day (even if only for a Starbucks run), and that’s a victory of major proportions. Here are some of our adventures.

1. We went to my cousin’s wedding last weekend. Addison was off the walls at that reception. You know how there’s always that crazy child running wild across the dance floor and manhandling all the decorations and everyone is all, Who is responsible for that kid?! Yeah, that’d be me.

addie lindsey

I also had two handsome dudes on (and in) my arms.

clayton nat wedding

nat ash wedding

2. Then, it was my birthday on Sunday! All I wanted was a massive burrito from Capital Tacos, which I did receive despite no photographic evidence. The rest was just gravy.

nat mug 3. I feel so cheated that when I worked at Bed, Bath & Beyond in college I had to wrap all the registry gifts with a line of customers getting more impatient by the second and the gift purchaser breathing over my shoulder inspecting every last ribbon curl for perfection. And now that it’s ten years later, I still have to wrap the gifts at BB&B.

bbbFun story:my friend threatened to call the Better Business Bureau after they made me stay until 2 a.m. closing one night during Christmas season. Aaah, memories.

4. Addison rocked her first trip to the dentist. You say “prize” to her, and she falls in line like a veteran soldier.

addie dentist5. We hijacked Clayton’s peaceful lunch break and replaced it with condiment spilling, baby spit-up, mac ‘n’ cheese refusals and corn soufflé stealing. An hour has never felt so long as it does in public with two tiny humans.

clayton ash addie

We have Addie’s school orientation and dinner with friends on the schedule this weekend. Stay cool, kids.

Five for Friday

1. This song. A little morbid, but in an upbeat way.

2. And this one because I’m basic and highly susceptible to cheesy self empowerment lyrics at the moment.

3. Hope everyone in Tampa had their arks handy this week.

rain

4. Addie was not amused by being homebound.

addie rain boots 5. I am not amused at her looking 13 years old.

addie seaworld

Off to ride out some more rain this weekend. Just keep swimming.

Five for Friday

Real talk: I want to throw some Friday fluff at you today, but I am not feeling particularly warm or fluffy these days. The constant, every day-ness of parenting a toddler and caring for a newborn has caught up to me big time. I am working on it, minute by minute. While we trudge on over here, I still wanted to share some of the bright spots…because they’re always there, aren’t they? Let’s keep looking for them.

1. A dinner like this can only mean one thing: my husband is on vacation and is doing the cooking.

photo 1

2. Addison’s first roller coaster. She was a champ—that thing was legit for a three-year-old!—and I was so proud of her. She went on it two times in a row, little daredevil. Sometimes Most of the time I don’t feel especially courageous, but I want to make sure that my girl knows her bravery is always seen and always celebrated.

coaster tailscoaster

3. Speaking of rolling…

asher roll

I definitely laid this little bean down on his back and found him like this in the morning. He’s incredibly confused once he makes it all the way over.

4.When you get married young, you are so blinded by puppy love and optimism that you can’t possibly imagine a life not filled with romance and sunsets and butterflies. And then you get real jobs, move a handful of times, have two kids and wake up realizing holy crap we are grown-ups and parents and old and different. What I would wish for every single couple embarking on that journey is that when they wake up to all those realities five, ten or twenty years down the road, they would be SO OVERWHELMINGLY THANKFUL for who they fell in puppy love with. That who they married for the rainbows turns out to be exactly who they need when it rains. This man is who I needed when I was crazy enough to jump out of a plane, who I needed when we were crazy enough to bring two tiny people into this world, and who I will always need when the crazy catches up to me.

c addie pool3

There. That has to make up for not doing an anniversary post in May, right?

5. This little boy and his profoundly simple wisdom.

swimming

Five for Friday

Clayton’s two-week vacation began on Monday! Woop woop! Rather than a cliché trip to Europe or a tropical cruise, we decided to go all out and schedule meetings with a financial advisor and attend Addison’s preschool orientation. Go big or go home, right? Here are the wild ways we’ve been spending Vacay Week One. 

1. The kickoff to our subdued staycation was Addison’s birthday party last Saturday. It seemed like everyone had a good time, even though the rain switched up the “Fun in the Sun” theme to more of a “Fun in the Living Room” theme. For the few minutes we could venture outdoors, it was a smash.

addie slide1Let’s be honest, all you really need to placate most 2-3 year olds (and their parents) is food. Preferably food that involves icing.   

kids cake

2. Truthfully, I knew a single date night would make me feel like the vacation was a raging success. Two and a half months without a night out with my boo was feeling like an eternity. And by boo, I obviously mean this:

beer flightPic taken on an actual vacation when we were livin’ that DINK life hard.

So on Tuesday, we dropped Addison off at preschool and had ourselves a little day date (with our tiniest third wheel in tow). We explored Locale Market in St. Pete before heading to Cassis for lunch.

cassisThen we walked along the water for a bit taking pictures of ourselves.

st pete2

clayton nat st pete3. If that wasn’t indulgent enough, we even had a real live just-the-two-of-us date that night. My parents watched both nuggets while we FINALLY saw “Jurassic World.”

jurassic world

Did it rival the brilliance of the original? No. Did I love it? Yes. For such an ambitious undertaking, I thought it was a great resurrection of that franchise in 2015. And it certainly put those other crap sequels to shame. I want to see it again already.

4. I made a Cuban sandwich tray for the party and way, way overestimated how much ham and pork I needed. I hope my family enjoys a daily grilled Cuban as much as I do.

cubans5. I grabbed this bag on my way out of TJMaxx the other day because I was starving, impulsive and cranky from trying on bathing suits (a task that should be forbidden until at least six months after giving birth).

$8 snack

When I got to the car, I realized if was $8. Eight dollars for puffed nuts. A part of me died inside.

So far today’s plans include staring at the unending rain. Party on, Noas.    

Five for Friday

In honor of Addison’s birthday week, here is a special birthday edition of the weekly round-up! I hope all of her birthdays are filled with so many of her favorite things.

1. A birthday birdhouse. We took Addison to Home Depot and let her pick out the colors. Surprisingly, the mess wasn’t the Lilly-Pulitzer-meets-Texas-Chainsaw-Massacre disaster I was anticipating. We still have to buy bird food and put it out in the yard, but I think those birds are really going to enjoy feasting in such a bright, whimsical abode.

addie birdhouse

2. Sliding and bouncing with friends on birthday morning.

addie slide2

3. A very serious tattoo application. Clouded by the excitement of a free birthday tattoo, she pointed to the first one she saw: a skull and crossbones with spikes coming out of its head. Thankfully Addison allowed me to steer her away from her initial choice and she landed on a slightly less horrific bear with hearts.

addie tattoo4. Followed by tailgating with massive cupcakes and frosting for days.

addie frosting5. The birthday girl was able to choose between dinner at home (I even offered pancakes!) or going to “the restaurant.”

addie walrusWe ended the night with “Shrek” and a very flexible bedtime. This fantastic week is going to be capped off with a party this weekend. Birthdays are the best, especially when I get all the celebratin’ with none of the aging. Have some cake for Addison!

Five for Friday

One of these days I might actually blog on a day that is not Friday. Today is not that day. While we’re enjoying pancakes and play dates, you can enjoy these little things that made me happy this week.

1. Fresh flowers in the kitchen and bathroom. I always intend to pick up flowers every week, but file that under Things That Only Happen When In-laws Come To Town.

flowers1

flowers2

2. When your rehab exercises are a little too close to the coloring book. “I colored the little boy blue.” Yes, yes you did.

photo 1

3. I’m pretty sure there’s a lot more to life than being really, really ridiculously good looking. And I plan on finding out what that is.

zoolander

4. Five years (and five tax seasons) later, I’m finally getting my act together.

business acct Now who do I speak to about the free puppy with purchase?

5. I can’t believe I haven’t shared this sooner, but my all time most favorite coffee mug ever. I received this mug as a gift for my 30th birthday last year, and the excitement has not worn off yet. When the mug is cold, the dinos are all walking around without a care in the world. (Well, that little one being pursued by the T-rex may have one concern.) Coffee goes in and bam—total extinction!

mug cold collagemug extinct collage

I actually love it so much I save it and only use it on Fridays…thereby confirming my absolute nerd status.

Five for Friday

My mother in law is in town for a quick, impromptu visit to meet our little man and Clayton is off today, so my normal lazy Friday is out the window. Let’s jump in so I can get back to our holiday weekend.

1. When the in-laws are here, it’s time to dust off those pots and pans and present a finely crafted illusion of domestication. At least the rouse provided my family with one full, well balanced meal this week.

 mil meal

Sorry if that half cooked meat grosses you out. I am imagining my pregnant self seeing that picture, and, well, gag fest. Still not changing it, though.

2. My dad took the day off Monday, and we took the troops for lunch and exploring at the park. This is a park we frequent, and I’ve always assumed the “beach” was saltwater. My mom thought it might be fresh water, so naturally we Googled and it turns out it does get fed by a lake on one end and Tampa Bay on the other. I say all that because saltwater = no alligators and fresh water = alligators. Thanks a lot, Mom, for that new red alert at our favorite park and paddleboard locale. I’m hoping the water is more brackish and the only possible threats would be bull sharks (which I am always on the lookout for while on the board because I would exaggerate the mess out of that story) and, worst of all, razor burn after getting in too soon after shaving. This one I can actually attest to after Monday.

pawpaw addie park

Ain’t no nap like a picnic table nap ‘cuz a picnic table don’t stop.

Or something like that.

table nap

3. Major Gap sale happening. In the store, the clearance sections were marked down an additional 50%. Hello, $5 kids clothes. My finder’s fee was an outfit for myself.

4. We went to the children’s museum this morning.

musem view ig

I could talk about how fun it was and how we stumbled on a secret patio overlooking the University of Tampa for lunch, which is true, but the reality is that we couldn’t find Addison for several minutes. I don’t know exactly how long it was because the seconds stretch on for eternities piled on top of eternities when that happens. It was probably close to 10 minutes. If anything like this has happened to you, 1. please let me know so I feel less like an absolute failure as a mother and 2. you know how long 10 minutes can be. I can’t talk more about it because it’s still too fresh and I can feel the remnants of that terror lingering in my wobbly legs and fingers.

5. I don’t want to end on that note because THANK GOD Addison is home, in her bed, napping peacefully. Instead, let’s get frivolous and celebrate this national treasure that starts Sunday! In related news, Florida is becoming a bit of a hot spot for great white shark sightings. Because gators and stingrays and pythons and panthers weren’t enough. We caught ourselves one a few years ago.

shark week

It was a wild one.

Have a festive July 4th! I hope the hot dogs are delicious and the fireworks are spectacular and, if you have kids or a dog, are over by 9 p.m.

Five for Friday

1. This cheeky little list notebook from my second home.

lists

2. The only candles I’ve ever found that are strong enough for our main living area (family room, kitchen and living room are all open to each other) are the Bath and Body Works 3-wick candles. They are stupid expensive, so I was giddy when I saw them on clearance for 50% off. It was exceptional timing since the trash was rancid. I went home, fired up one of those bad boys, waited for Clayton to get home and made him take the trash out.

candles

3. We hit up the zoo last Friday in the late afternoon and the orangutan was all, “Make this show worth my while, suckers.” Addison and I have been throwing this hand motion at each other randomly ever since.

orangutan

4. SMILES!

asher smile11asher smile13

5. The Bachelorette is annoying me to no end. Not even because of all the making out and sex, but all the cliffhangers are obnoxious and the dude drama seems completely contrived (looking at you Clint and JJ). But alas, I will suffer for my addiction.

Off the faves list: Chris, the Nauseatingly Sweet Dentist.

dentist nope

Added to the faves even though they will definitely not be in the final episodes: Self-deprecating Tanner

tanner

and adorable, sweet and supreme Bachelor material Ben H.

ben hJury is out on Shawn. He’s getting a little neurotic, but with good reason, no?

And just…stop.

nick v noOkay. I feel better getting that off my chest.

I may be back on the paddleboard this weekend for the first time in like a year! Eeee! Hopefully I can locate some balance and cardiovascular endurance, which have also not been employed in the same amount of time.