Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Apple Break

Earlier, Charley grabbed himself and apple and parked himself on our bench outside, all on his own accord. I had to capture this cuteness on film.

Tessa joined the fun and I caught this great video. It is so rare to catch them on film this quiet and peaceful. Exceedingly rare! I may as well have caught the Loch Ness monster on film here.

Untitled from Laura Sargent Bennington on Vimeo.

Friday, May 27, 2011

End of the Preschool Year

Yesterday was Tessa's last day of school for the year, and I had alot of fun joining them for their circus day. I was wise enough to have a friend babysit Charley so I could volunteer as a parent helper and not have to chase him around.

I am very sad and mad at myself that I didn't take a camera with me to circus day. I suck, I know. I'm sorry.

I really do have nothing but marvelous things to say about Tessa's school. It's run through a large church with an awesome wing of children's classrooms. When we first started there when she was two (and Charley was an infant and Mama needed a break), it was a 'parent's day out' program, but over the last year they have evolved into a bonafied preschool with a shiny new remodel and everything.

The staff is amazing as is their Christian based curriculum. Tessa has been going 2 days a week (4 hours each) and in the fall will be doing 3 days a week. The fall after that will be kindergarten and just typing that word makes me want to vomit.

This summer they are doing a summer program call SWAP (summer with a purpose) and BOTH kids will be attending. Still 2 days a week (4 hours each) but with fun themes and sports. You know...more summery.

I know Charley will LOVE it. He is so social with other kids. He'll be the biggest duck in the puddle, I just know it.

And what will I do with 8 hours a week of child-free time? Cry, take a nap, talk to myself...and eventually get around to some long abandoned projects like cleaning out closets.

Tessa's teachers made a book of all her projects from the year and some great pictures too.

The teachers wrote a little personalized note in each book. Here's what Miss Vicky had to say about Tessa..."My favorite thing about Tessa is her desire to share stories and tell us all about things she's doing or interested in. Tessa is very social and enjoys playing and interacting with the girls. She very much enjoys her lunch and seems to come alive at lunchtime."

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tessa Singing The Rolling Stones

Tessa Singing Rolling Stones from Laura Sargent Bennington on Vimeo.

So glad she learned this by the way...I overheard her singing it to Charley when he was having a fit of impatience.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Summer Reading

There are a couple of places that I can't be trusted when it comes to frivolous spending... Target, Sephora, and the Children's Section of Barnes and Noble.

Charley and I stopped by there while out on a mission to find fake hair for Tessa. Yes I cut all her hair off only to find out she needs a ponytail for recital. Not so long story short, the girl is going to wear some fake hair. If only I had bought the right color.

Anyway, we popped in for this awesome kid's book written by my idol herself, Ree Drummond (aka the Pioneer Woman). It's all about her real-life lazy basset hound. So cute!
But while there, I got a little out of hand. Tessa has been asking for some more 'big kid' books cause alot of hers are short and babyish. So we have some summer reading plans!
Yes I feel a little guilty that I bought all of these new, off the rack and not from a used bookstore or checked from the library. Our town has an amazing library and I realize that I could have gone there (and gotten over my slight library phobia...it's a navigation thing, not a germ thing). But I figure these are long term keepers, so why not invest. Classics.

On my list of things to do this summer is also do a toy and book purge of anything too baby-ish for my kids. Look out Erin, we're coming at you with a donation!

I also picked up these two more 'technical' type books for Tessa. She is fascinated by them. In the human body one she was studying the heart and simply and quietly commented....wow, it's so beautiful.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Adventure Girl

This afternoon, the kids and I went for a walk and Tessa insisted on full safari gear, including her furry winter boots (not pictured). She was ready to 'go on an adventure'.

She insisted she was up for a long walk. I was hoping to go around our lake, which is a 1/2 mile or so. Yeah we made it about halfway before her and Charley both started whining about being tired and hot (um..fur boots maybe?). Luckily we were able to shortcut through our neighbor's back yard.

Here I was trying to exercise. I forgot the main goal was 'adventuring'.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Rainy Day Art

Paint some coffee filters, folded in half.

Glue some raindrops to paper, use piper cleaners as the umbrella stems.

Glue the umbrellas to the rainy backdrop. Voila! Display on Fridge.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Mommies Gone Wild

Have you ever had one of those out of body experiences where you come home thinking, did that just happen?? I guess that's how I feel right now, and I'm not sure how to even tell the story of my weekend.

Awesome. Strange. Luxurious. Child-free. Anxious. Fattening.

Let me begin my reminding you of the back story of my birth board and all we've gone through together. Rather that re-typing the whole story, I'll direct you to read this.

My Yuku sisters (henceforth known as yisters) are all Moms of April '07 babies, from all over the country, and all walks of life. This past weekend 20 of us converged on Las Vegas to begin an annual meetup tradition. There have been small meetups in the past...like this one I attended in Chicago. But this was the biggest and yeah, the BEST!

We rented a big house which was decked out like a mini-castle. We swam, ate, chatted, swam, cried, napped, drank, swam, ate, went out to restaurants and bars, chatted and swam. I would compare it to a family reunion, with the twist of some sort of strange reality show featuring stay at home Moms leaving their nests.

At the Indy airport on my way out of town I found myself having a mini-panic attack. Not about leaving my kids (with Jeremy who did GREAT). Not about squeezing my big butt into an airline seat or finally meeting some of these ladies face to face. My panic came from not knowing if I could function without the kids.

Since I don't work, they are ALWAYS around me. The only exception being the 8 hours a week that Tessa is in preschool. I knew they would be fine but would I?...do I remember how to have normal conversations? Can I travel somewhere without goldfish in my purse? And most importantly, have I forgotten who I am without the perpetual child shield protecting me?

I reminded myself that this was no group of strangers. Not only do these women know me, they do know me without kids. When I write this blog, or get on Yuku or Facebook late at night to converse, I don't have that perpetual child shield confusing matters. I think all the stay at home moms I know nowadays thank the internet for their sanity. To the pre-internet Mom I have to say, how did you do it?

So with a deep breath and a copy of Tina Fey's new autobiography on my iPad, away I flew to Vegas by myself to have one of the greatest weekends ever.

My room. One night I had a roommate but I was mostly alone. The luxury of a long shower while not having an ear turned toward the children in the bedroom...was almost too much for me.

That's my face, and possibly my wine glass.

The whole gang, 20 total.

I couldn't snap a good pic but those lights are the Vegas strip. Our view from the balcony.

There was a yoga workout by the pool. In the interest of protecting my back from the harsh concrete, I mostly abstained.

Our ringleader made crepes.

I didn't cook much over the weekend, but I made fruit salad!

...which was part of a breakfast of champions. Yes that's homemade vanilla whip cream on top. And champagne. For breakfast. Commence drooling.

This guy was in our entryway.

Pretty much what we did for 3 days.

I could tell you about all these ladies...their kids, what they do, their favorite pizza toppings. That's how well we know each other.

Yum. Nuff said.

So this is Lise. It's pronounced like Lisa but since we mostly talk through typing, everyone assumed for the longest time that her name was pronounced like LEASE. To this day many of us call her Lease....it's just too hard not to.

This is Abbie who actually lives in Vegas. She made the angel costume that Tessa wore at her Christmas program and several other things for us. She is amazing and I want to be more like her when I grow up.

One of the ladies hosted an at home jean party. I didn't know such a thing existed!

We had little gift bags. Everyone was to bring something from home to contribute, then we guessed who brought what. I took some of my homemade herb soap.

Saturday night some of us went out to a fancy restaurant and did the tasting menu with wine pairings. Yum yum yum. I think the last time I had a tasting menu was in Chicago in 2006 when we went up to see Wicked. Everyone should do it at least once every 5 years....preferably sooner.

Sickos Eating Cookies

Ugh, sickness. Sickness AGAIN. Remember when I used to brag about how my kids never got sick and had never been on antibiotics? Yeah, one of you should have smacked me.

At the moment all FOUR of us are on antibiotics. I have the tail end of a sinus infection, Jeremy and Tessa share the same throat infection, and Charley has infected ears.

It seems like we've been sick since like February. Not all of us at once, and not the same person repeatedly. We've mastered the art of taking turns. Poor Charley is on his third antibiotic in three months, which I hate. I'm the only one who regularly takes probiotic supplements, but I think maybe it's time to start a regiment for the whole family.

I've been racking my brain trying to figure out why we are suddenly walking germ bombs over the past three months. The only two changes I can think of are seasonal allergies, and the kids regularly attending the LA Fitness childcare. Here's hoping that the gym is sanitizing well enough, 'cause a germ induced decline in exercise would be bad for Mama.

Anyway, the troops were feeling poopy tonight after dinner so I whipped up some chocolate chippers for dessert. I thought about making a cookie post but it's nothing spectacular. Just check the back of your Nestle package for directions.

Charley has had no appetite so I needed to bribe him with something tasty to take with his antibiotic. Mmmm....a steady diet of cookies, antibiotic and gatorade. The next supermodel diet regime?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

If You Need to Find Me This Weekend

As of Thursday, I'll be living the high life in this Vegas mini castle along with 18 of the coolest ladies I know. You can find Jeremy here at home, having a special Daddy's weekend with the kiddos.

Monday, May 09, 2011

A Lefty Perhaps?

We may have a lefty in our midst. MAY being the operative word, cause it's hard to tell at this age.

Tessa's been a little behind on her cutting a tracing skills. Nothing worrisome, but she just cannot get the hang of using scissors in particular. Well today, Tessa's teacher said that she had done all of today's tracing with her left hand instead of her right, and had done really well.

She suggested with try left handed scissors and see if she does better. Huh? A lefty? How could I not have noticed??.....here's where the illogical Mommy guilt sets in. The part where I feel super guilty for not noticing sooner and setting her on the right track for cutting a long time ago. The part where I feel stupid about the previous guilt I had felt about not practicing scissoring enough. And the inevitable question...is she DELAYED in some way compared to her other classmates?!?

You can see how that is a vicious cycle. It lasted about 5 min.

Actually I had noticed her trying to write with her left hand last week, and I just simply told her...oh honey remember how you're supposed to hold a pen? She switched hands tried to position it correctly in her fingers. Like dis Mama? Sorry, honey, sometimes we Mommies are a little slow.

So we are in the market for some Fiskar safety scissors. Apparently they are made to be used by either hand, imagine that.

I'm anxious to try doing some left handed stuff and see how she does.

And admittedly, coming from long line of all (or mostly?) righties, my second thought after the guilt was....does that mean she'll be super smart?? I'm an idiot, I know. You got me on two counts.

Mother's Day 2011

Nothing like being sick on what is supposed to be 'your' day. But it wasn't too bad. There was lots of napping and laziness, so I can't complain too much.

I knew I had a raging sinus infection and needed antibiotics, but before I headed to the doc's I had to stop by to see Tessa sing in the Mother's Day performance at church. This isn't our church, but the one where she does preschool. Much much bigger than ours.

I couldn't help but laugh at their automated self check in kiosks in the nursery area. I felt like I was at the airport! But really, it's an awesome facility and we LOVE love the preschool.

This top picture comes from being tagged on facebook. A much better picture than the couple that we got. Gotta love the beauty of facebook!
They were so cute. They recited a verse and sang a couple songs. Tessa knew it all!
I stayed long enough to hear her sing and cough and snot all over the place (Those were tears from illness I swear. I wasn't crying at my kid onstage...that would be so cheesy. Sniff sniff.) Then I took off an headed for urgent care.

Urgent care is closed on Mother's Day for a holiday, did you know that? So I'd like to thank the fine doctor at the Walgreens Take Care clinic. She was very nice and fast and said yup, I had a sinus infection and needed antibiotics. No big shocker.

After the church service was over, Jeremy and the kids headed down south to celebrate Mother's Day as well as Andy and Bob's simultaneous birthdays. I headed home to the couch. They had a great time and I watched a couple movies. Win win.

I knew Jeremy hadn't gotten me a present so I took care of myself and got this bad boy...
A big ol' ceramic drink thingy for iced tea. Jeremy asked me to start making iced tea in something other than the plastic pitcher, for fear of the hot water mixed with melting plastics infecting our bodies with flesh eating bacteria...or something. So I got a big ceramic thingy! With a spicket!

Stay tuned for any good pictures that might exist from the birthday party....our resident photographer is currently experiencing technical difficulties.