Thursday, March 31, 2011

Cate's Dramatic Story~A Video

Cate is the most dramatic, animated child I have ever met. She talks with her hands, arms, does a few toe kicks, a couple ballerina moves, and a thank-you bow at the end. All the hoopla just to tell me it's rainy and she can't see the sun. Very entertaining to watch and I've been trying to get a good story on video for weeks. Last night, I kinda got what I was looking for.....Cate was telling a story about how she is a ghost, and the bad wolf wants to blow her house down ,but her house is made of bricks (I love her dramatic arms/hands when talking about bricks)...then she rambles about house/hospital/airplane being too big..hands on her hips. But the best is when I ask her why she had to go to the hospital and she reenacts jumping off the couch and then she collects herself and delivers the hunched shoulders, sigh, sweet folded hands, drops her head...she's getting very good at her story telling!! Even better is Scott's reaction to her dramatics. Love how she calls me out at the end about Scott going in the ambulance while I stayed home.....because Ben had a houseful of boys that I needed to figure out where to ship them and then I raced over to the hospital.

Spring Break

This week is spring break for the kids/Scott. But, it's still business as usual around here. Gabby and Grace visit Tues-Thurs, boys still have sports practice everynight and Scott still has baseball at least 2.5 hours each day. The weather has been pretty crappy, which is ok with me because if it were sunny and warm, I wouldn't be happy about not getting to do anything. We have gotten a few projects done around the house....painted my dining room chandelier (didn't love it, had Scott take it down again, repainted it, like it now), put Cate's new light from IKEA together and bought all supplies to repaint/redo her room...and Scott has done lots of yard work. Bennett has two friends spending the night tonight, and Carter is planning to have a houseful stay Saturday night. So, a quick shout-out to the brilliant mind behind Ambien! G'night :)

Last night, Brady ran into the corner of my parents countertop and got a black eye. The whole way home Dramatic Cate kept saying in her most pitiful voice "Dis is ho-wah-ble. Bwady's gonna have to wear a patch on his eye and then he'll be a piwate. He will say AARRR!" (her imagination is running wild these days!) And Brady kept saying "That was so close. I thought I was going to lose my eye. Then I'd need a walking stick like the blind guy that walks home from Schnucks". I wonder how many times I roll my eyes a day.



And then there was light......

Don't you just love Cate's new bedroom light? Scott put it together...all 97 pieces (no joke). Obviously the clear light bulbs are not the ideal choice...those are some freaky shadows on the wall! Only took three trips to Lowes to find the ones that work best....mission accomplished. Now, I have to paint the room/dresser/closet/side table....should be super easy considering I have nothing else going on...har har. Did I mention I'm running a relay marathon next weekend and in 30 days, I'm running a half-marathon?! My training is up to 11 miles this weekend...yes, that's 11 miles at one time. Who woulda thought I was capable of that?!?! Not me!!!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Schaumburg Soccer=Very Long Post

This weekend was our first out-of-town sports tournament of the year. First of many. Carter's soccer team played in the Nike Academy College Showcase in Shaumburg, IL. Oh how I love Schaumburg. Our hotel was nestled between IKEA, Lands End, and Woodfield Mall. Heaven, I tell ya. And only 4.47 hours from our house. Not too bad. I actually enjoy day trips that are no more than 5 hours. The kids were really good and I got to listen to my favorite kids movie, Garfield. Cate did not want to watch it but Bennett tricked her into agreeing..."Cate, do you wanna watch the dog and cat movie?" "NO, I want Wow!Wow!Wubzy!" *groans from the backseat* (I told them to blame MauMau for that one) "What if we watch the puppy dogs and baby kittens?" "Oh how I love puppy dogs and kitty cats (seriously, who's dramatic kid is this??)...let's watch that one!!" That Bennett is one brilliant dude. From mile one, I let the kids know where all snacks, drinks, ipods, computers, and DS/games were and after that they were on their own. I was not playing flight attendant this time! Besides, I had better things to do like read People magazine out loud to Scott..who I'm sure appreciated it...not! The highlight of the roadtrip were the toll roads ten minutes from our destination. We were such amateurs at this. Left side is wide open with a sign that says something about an i-pass. The right side had attendants taking the $1 fee. We flew right through the left side waving out the sunroof to all the suckers in the right lanes paying up. Oh yeah, we were high-fiving each other for sticking it to the road way were they getting our four quarters (it was literally the only cash we had on us). But then we saw a sign for another toll a few miles up the way. I felt that our original plan worked great and we should stick with what's working. However, Mr. I Never Break The Rules Smallie started feeling bad and going on about how the highways and city needs the toll money to fix/repair/improve blah blah blah. I knew I'd lost him at that point and it was off to the right side of the toll bridge with all of the other honest people. Boo. Hoo. Game over (for now). We stayed at the Hyatt Place. It was perfect for our family. Two big rooms, the sectional sofa was perfect to lounge on, 42" flatscreen between both even had hook-ups for the xbox. Cate was looking out the window into the parking lot of IKEA. Walking distance...hello!!!

Outside vanity area is really great for family travelers. And for $89/nt, well, mama was one happy lady. The pool area got lots of use. Cate swam at least four different times. She loved the "hot pool" but only kept her feet in was very very hot. Carter was doing headstands in it...he's just not normal.
Carter's first soccer game wasn't until 3:30. This gave me plenty of time to check out IKEA. Everyone wanted to go too *groan*, but I figured they may enjoy it. The store was so much more than I expected. I've only drooled through their catalogs a zillion times, but I wasn't sure how the quality would be. Well, they have full model displays on every bedroom, bathroom, kids room, teens room, study space, office, kitchen, etc. They encourage you to sit on all furniture, lay on the beds, and the kids played on every bed/chair/kitchen/tent they could find. I did buy Cate a pop up tent ($9) and the coolest light for her room. (More on that another time)Because I brought males with me, I was only allowed to stay 25 minutes....that's about 4.5 hours less than I wanted to, so even though I did make it to IKEA and I did buy a really cool light, the trip was very disappointing for me. I didn't get to wander around from display to display and I never even made it to the top floor and the kitchen stuff. But now that I know how to get there and the good hotel to stay at....I WILL be back....and child/husband free. Amen.

The boys enjoyed the kids rooms...Brady really liked that chair because the top rolled down and no one knew he was in there.Woodfield Mall had a nice surprise for me...Baskin Robbins. My very favorite ice cream ever. Ever Ever Ever. Chocolate. Only chocolate. I'm a one flavor girl. We had it twice this weekend and both were wonderful :)
Cate and Brady obviously loved it too

Maybe I should start talking about the actual soccer games. They were cold. Like really really cold. The first game was delayed about 45 minutes, so Scott took Brady and Cate back to the hotel to swim and would come get us after the game. Ben stayed with me because he likes to hang out with the other siblings. So, we froze our butts off to watch SLSG stick it to the Chicago Sockers Academy team. And Carter had the game winning assist...woohoo!
Does this seem ridiculous to anyone else? Every uniform on their team was 1-15 and then here's this huge kid wearing # 69....ick.

Cate did convince her daddy to push her on the swing before they left for the hotel
Bennett and his posse wrestled throughout the entire game.

Scott took Carter and the boys to his 9am Sunday morning game. Cate and I slept in til 9:45. She woke up and immediately got ready for the pool. She had to wait for Scott because I didn't bring a suit (ah, damn). That's probably the comment he made when he walked in after a freezing game and saw her ready to go. He was a good sport and took her down for awhile while I packed the room. We then loaded up the car and headed back to the mall to kill some time before the next game.

The sibling posse was back at it for the final game-lots of "YoMama" jokes being told, I'm sure! (From left to right, Bennett is second and Brady is fourth-in blue.)

The 2:15 game wasn't nearly as cold and Cate made an appearance through the entire game. Well, until she got comfy on my lap under a blanket and fell asleep for over an hour. So much for the nap home we were counting on.

Carter's team finished so much better than any of us thought they would. First game 4-2, Second game 4-0, Third game 0-2. Overall, a great soccer weekend.

The drive home was just as pleasant. We stopped at Cracker Barrel 20 minutes into the trip to make sure we filled their bellies, gassed the car up, and emptied their bladders so they would hopefully fall asleep. It worked. The last 25 minutes the boys got a little slap happy and Cate and Brady were still sleeping so I almost had to beat some butt.

Two dorks fixing their hair Bieber Style. Unfortunately, they were caught with seatbelts off...busted!!!!

Cate took a nap with her little legs crossed and still wearing her Minnie Mouse flip flops!

Next up:

Memphis in late May for baseball

Rockford in May for Carter's IL State Cup -they go back every weekend til they lose

Kansas City in July for Brady and Ben's baseball

and endless trips to Jacksonville for weekend baseball games.

Our Mission is to agree on, and find time to buy a new vehicle before our next trip. Finding the time should be the most difficult part. Wish I could do it online and have it delivered!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Classic Carter

At Woodfield Mall in Chicago~

Brady: Is there an American Girl here?

Me: No

Carter: Yes there is

Me: No there's not

Carter: Yes there is. There's one right there, and there, and there. I know there are a lot of Japanese girls, but some are American.

Brady: We're talking about the American Girl store, not white women!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


On Monday, Cate and I decided it was the perfect day to spend at the park. During my Sunday run (9.1 miles in case you're wondering ;) ), we ran the trail that passes by Horseshoe Lake and I was surprised at how pretty it was and knew Cate would love seeing all the ducks and throwing rocks into the water. So, that's where we headed. There's a huge playground too and we packed a big bag of bread to feed the ducks. Poor ducks didn't even get a crumb...Cate ate it all :)
If you scroll quickly through the next group of pictures, you'll see Cate do her "We Did It-Dora dance" after she mastered the climbing tower :)

Pointing out a fishing boat

I was really hoping she wouldn't notice the sand volleyball pit. No such luck.

Monday's With Mommy rock!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Weekend Madness

Our spring sports schedule started back full force this weekend and I'm already hating it. We have at least two practices four nights a week and I won't even get into the details about how crazy busy our weekends are. I'm already exhausted and Scott's baseball games haven't even started yet...or Bennett's...or Brady's. Carter has a soccer tournament in Chicago this weekend and we still haven't decided who is and Carter or the whole family (guess which I'm voting for?!) There is no way Cate will go an entire weekend without her daddy, so if he and Ben and Brady stay back for their soccer games, Carter and I are heading north by ourselves! I'm sure we won't decide who's going til late Thursday night...who needs to plan ahead?!
On Sunday, Carter had a game at Soccer Park in Fenton

Brady and Ben love to get onto the field during halftime.

Cate getting the ball for Shawn....

Next up was Brady's soccer game...a nice 45 minute drive from Carters field

They won. 7-1 Brady is still beast.

Cate found some sticks and entertained herself playing the drums.

Bennett's morning soccer game was canceled due to rain. After Brady's game, we headed home for five minutes so the boys could get changed for baseball practice. Scott dropped me off at Candi's and he took Ben and Brady to practice. Carter stayed home and Cate went to Grammy's. Candi, Marcie, and I ran 9.1 with our feet. The whole way. Amazing. Two hours later, Candi dropped me off at home and five minutes later, Scott pulled in. That means, we were gone 9 hours straight yesterday. This is why I wake up Monday with a terrible hang-over...that has nothing to do with alcohol. Scott said each kid is giving up one sport next year, so we'll see how that goes. I'm all for it!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Zoo-tastic Weather!

Yesterday, Cate and I spent a lovely day at the zoo. The weather was perfect. Although, I had no idea the Stl St. Pat's Parade was next to the zoo and I really had no idea it was such a huge deal. Took me forever to get through Forest Park...the front parking lot of the zoo was filled with tailgaters. Old drunk men were directing traffic with beers in both hands....crazy! Our usual 14 minute trip took almost an hour, but Cate was very patient and was just so happy to be going! Once inside, the crowd was very small...guess those zillion people were headed to the parade only. We had lunch outside by the lake and leisurely strolled through all of Cate's favorite exhibits. The Childrens zoo has a new toddler play area with small sheds, rakes, wheelbarrows...very farm-like and Cate could have spent the entire day there. She quickly made a friend and they played inside one of the "houses" for a long time. While sitting on a bench sunning myself, I let time slip away and we barely made it back before the boys got home from school!
The entire time she was eating her "polka dots ice cream" she said over and over "I wish my Bwady was here with me". She really misses him when he's at school.

She used some of her birthday money to buy a mama and baby monkey at Build-A-Bear.

Cate loves the meerkats but their house was in major need of a scrub down...STINKY!