Friday, November 19, 2010

There's an "I" in Family??

I am pretty sure we have all heard the saying "There is no 'I' in team" but what about the saying "There should not be an 'I' in family" which I totally just made up. I am constantly fighting an internal battle with myself regarding family. Whether it is my family or Anthony's family, there is ALWAYS something. It ranges from someone being mad at us for doing something or someone being mad at us for not doing something.

The thing I have come to learn is that for some reason, there are family members who are more concerned with themselves (that is the I part) than anyone else. It is more about how are they going to benefit from something. There is always and excuse as to why they can not. There are times when people that are not even family get treated more like family than the real family does.

They are those who only call when they want something or want to gossip about something. They are the ones that get made because you have not called them but they do not realize that it works both ways. They are the ones who do not always have time for you but are quick to get made when you spend time with other family who really care.

I learned a couple of months ago I learned a hard lesson. I learned that sometimes you can not even depend on family, not matter how close. So, instead of being like the others and focusing on just the 'I' in family, I will focus on the whole word.

F - Fun
A - Always going to be your family
M - Mistakes are forgiven
I - Invest in time with one another
L - Love and Loyal
Y - Yours whenever you need them

What do you think of when you think of the word family?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Birthday Girl!

"Good Morning Olivia, time to wake up!"
"But mommy I'm tired."
"Look, I'm up now."

That is how this morning started. Today my little princess in training is 4 years old. It seems like yesterday that she was just born. It was exactly 1:19 a.m. that my 8lb, 20-in long baby girl was born. After a week past her due date and 21 hours of exhausting labor due to her stubbornness (that she still practices to this day), she entered this world. Even at first glance, I knew she was going to be my little "Mini Me".

It is true what most parents say, "Don't blink or the next thing you know, they are all grown up". I remember rushing through that first year of her life. Wanting her to hurry up and be able to eat baby food. Hurry so that she could crawl. Wanting to rush to hear her say "Mama or Dada" for the first time. Wishing that she would start walking. Anxiously waiting for her to talk and form sentences. All those milestones I wanted to hurry up and experience, are now the ones I want to go back and remember.

Now I am preparing myself for the days of not wanting mommy to give you a goodbye kiss. The times when she no longer wants to sit and cuddle with me. The time that is gonna come when she is actually embarrassed by my presence (but I am already making a vow not to be one of THOSE moms if you get my drift). When everything I say is wrong, even though I am telling her for her own good.

This birthday wish that I am secretly making on her behalf is to stop and really experience, enjoy, cherish and live every single moment that we spend together.

Happy Birthday Olivia!! Mommy and Daddy love you more than you know!!

Olivia's 1st Birthday!!

Monday, November 15, 2010


For some reason Olivia enjoys being naked. I mean, the child shuns clothes like it is a plague. This girl is so into being "free" that the other day, within 1 minute of being home she had already stripped down to her birthday suit. My jaw dropped and I laughed so hard. I told her to go put on a t-shirt and some underwear at least, which caused her to stomp, pout and finally do what she was told. This incident, along with the others, raised the question of where did she get this from? I thought back and remembered the first time I met Anthony's father's side of the family...

A few years ago, Anthony and I went on a week long trip to Louisiana. We went to visit a friend and for me to meet his father's side of the family for the first time. I am sure you can guess that I was pretty nervous, but I was also excited at the same time. We decided to drive down with two of our friends that we worked with at Olive Garden at that time. Mainly because we were going to see the brother of one of the friends and the brother was our friend as well. Did I confuse you enough?

Anyway, it was a long 18 hour drive that I will never forget. That was my first and last experience with Red Bull (I will always be a coffee girl!). When we got there we went to our motel, which happened to be right next to a crack house/area. So, because we were all really nervous about that, we rented one room and all four of us crammed in there with EVERYTHING that we brought (including the car radio).

The first few days we did some touring and eating (actually we ate the whole time because you can not get southern food that good unless you are in the south). We finally went to visit his family and I loved them from the moment we said hello. There was no awkwardness or nervousness, they felt just like they were my family that I have known for a long time. They showed me pictures, took us around to see other family and then the stories.

The one thing that stumped me for a while was that they kept calling Anthony "Butt Naked Butt". I kept wondering why but was too scared to ask. Finally, they told me the story about how Anthony aka B.N.B., never liked to keep his clothes on. He always wanted to run around the house with nothing on but what God gave him. I laughed and enjoyed the fact that I had a knew nickname for him.

Ever since then, I do call him that whenever...well you know what I mean. But now I see that we will have to pass that name on to Olivia. Or at least call her B.N.B. J....Butt Naked Butt Jr.!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

"Trash or Treasure"

Okay, so I completely understand that toys are pretty much the unspoken treasure for kids. No matter how big or small, if it is a toy...they love it. I mean, even if it is not a toy at all but something someone gives them to play with, it's treasure. I will give you the perfect a doctor's office one time when Olivia was almost two years old. The doctor gave here this crazy looking glasses. They had clear lenses and thick black rims. They were something they used and were disposable so they had no problem giving them to her. Fast forward about two years later...Olivia still "plays' with those glasses.

Now you may be wondering about the whole point of this post and now I am going to tell you. While toys are treasure for kids, for some moms like me they can become trash. For some reason my daughter has inherited the need to keep everything. And no, she does not get that from me or Anthony. It's the strangest thing but this girl will play with a toy that she has from birth. I mean, the toy that is really just a rubber ring for her to chew on. She turns it into a bracelet!

So I am assuming many of you are probably thinking that it is a good thing that she plays with all of her toys still. Well let me tell you, it is not. Because she likes to play with everything, everything stays all over the place. Her floor, the living room floor, the dining room floor, our bedroom floor, our bed. You name it and there is more than likely a toy there. Olivia loves playing with her toys but just like any other kid, she does not like cleaning them up.

Now, I warn you that if there are any children present you may want to have them stop reading at this time...

Today was the day that I had enough. No more tripping over the purse straps and dress up accessories. No more getting stabbed in the toe by pencils, pens and markers. So over stepping on and then screaming at the top of my lungs, the four identical toys she got in a McDonald's happy meal. And who wouldn't love rolling over (in their own bed mind you) onto a naked Barbie. That's right...I put my foot down (in a safe spot mind you) and grabbed a trash bag.

I went into Olivia's room and threw out every happy meal and/or combo meal toy. Trashed the books that were missing pages. Naked Barbies with hair so tangled that you need scissors to fix...gone. I went in with one of those giant black lawn trash bags and left with every piece of "trash/treasure" in it. Oh, and those dear sweet glasses from the doctors office...well, all I have to say about them is R.I.P.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

"Christmas Tree!!"

I remember Olivia's first Halloween just like it was yesterday. Dressed as the cutest little bumblebee! Which by the way, I got last minute at Toy's R Us for $7!! The costume was great, except for the wardrobe malfunction that happened once we got to the mall to go trick-or-treating. The wings fell off and as it comes with the mommy territory, I had to find a quick That's right, I stopped at a store and asked them to borrow their stapler so that I could staple the wings back to the straps (I guess you get what you pay for).

That year she hadn't really grasped the concept so Anthony and I did most of the candy grabbing which did not pay off. I think she got a total of ten pieces of candy that year. Which was probably a good thing for her and my figure! The next year she went as a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader (that's right...this is a Dallas Cowboy lovin' family!). That was the first year we went trick-or-treating with my friend Janice and her two girls.
That year was great because she kind of got the hang of it and a lot of candy to go with it. You see, my friend Janice lives in Ashburn which is what can be considered "Trick-or-Treat Heaven" for little kids because there are lots of house and lots of candy. I mean, there are some that give out Full Size candy bars. Last year had to be the best by far. Olivia went as a lion...

It was nice that night and we were ready and knew where to hit first in Ashburn. Even Olivia was ready to hit the ground running! We started at 6:00pm with smiles on our faces, bag (and back up bag ready!) and went to the first house. Olivia walked up to the first house and when they opened it she said as loud as she could "Christmas tree!!!" and held out her bag. We all laughed so hard, even Olivia because she had no clue why we were laughing. The people at the house that it was so cute that they gave her extra candy. Last year, we had so much candy that her bag was too full that we had to use the back up bag. This year she decided to be a princess...

We were running a little late this year but even with an hour less than years past...she still hit the candy jackpot.

Now, you can't really tell that well from the picture but the pile of candy is actually about four inches high. As you can see, her and daddy were pretty happy with their spoils! So much for loosing those extra pounds. Initiate candy coma!