June 30, 2010

I take it all back!

Still glowing from my brave frog rescue, I woke up in the morning to my son trying to get out of his bedroom by shaking his door handle.  Before I could get to him, the inevitable happened, Z man locked himself in.  Trying to squelch my freak out from my daughter I ran around the house grabbing everything small I could stick in the hole of his doorknob.  Scissors = too big, earring = too small, pen  = just right but not long enough, so on and so forth.

E piped in with "Daddy always uses a Q-tip."  Always? This happens often? How was I not aware of that?

After a lot of 5 year old gibberish and stressed mom talk back and forth I figured out she meant a toothpick.  I got a box of toothpicks and ran back to Z's room. Granted I had tried to shove many things into that hole over the past 7 minutes, but really I had no idea what I supposed to do once I actually got something in there.

I stuck the toothpick in and jiggled it all around poking and prodding at things to no avail.  All the while I'm cursing Dan for being in Oslo, Norway because I could not pick up the phone to call him.  If he were on this side of the world he could at least make fun of sympathize with me while I was attempting to free Z man from what had now become (in my mind) a room full of dangerous, sharp, poisonous, menacing, choking hazardous, items.

There is clearly a God out there because he 1) gave us a child with a happy go lucky demeanor.  The entire time Z kept saying "Mom, you are so silly, open this door!" and unlike me he wasn't freaking out  and 2) God heard my inner panic (it is possible the neighbors heard it too, it was loud) and opened that door because I KNOW for a fact that it was not my clumsy fumbling of the toothpick that did it. (Vows to go to church more often)

So yes, I take back everything I said yesterday, I cannot live without the hubs.

June 28, 2010

If I am doing this on day 2, what will I be doing by day 15?

As I have mentioned ad naseum, yesterday the hubs left town for 2 weeks (15 days actually) and today the construction dudes finished installing the door that will exit out to our new deck.

On the outside of our house we have several window wells that are attached to our basement. Two of these wells are full of leaves and will be covered up when the deck is installed. I decided I should clean them out before they get covered up.  It is like when you move your stove to rescue the stray green Lego your child kicked under there and is yelling at the top of his lungs for - then you end up scrubbing the floor behind the stove.  No one is ever gonna see it, but you do it anyway.

So at 10:00 PM I got out a shovel and started shoveling leaves into a garbage bag. The fact that I thought of cleaning out the leaves, knew where a shovel was and then actually did the task is truly a freaking miracle.  Hubs is in charge of all things leaf-like. Maybe next I will try to mow the lawn!  Just kidding.

Anywho, In the first window well I found a baby frog and honest to God my scream was quiet enough to not wake all of the neighbors. Wow! Who am I? Did I mention I do not do critters? I looove animals but just not ones that hop, slither, squeak, etc. in my home.

I rescued the little guy and took him over the grass so he could hop off into froggy happiness.  In case you are wondering - Noooo I did not touch him - I put him on my shovel and gave him a lift.

On to window well #2 - and guess what?  Two more frogs!  One big one and one baby one.  I rescued them both and shuttled them over to what I am assuming was their long lost baby brother/son.

Although my heart is still racing like I ran a marathon, I'm SUPER proud of myself! Maybe I could survive if the hubs decided to run off and stay in Europe.

Realistically, what is going to happen next is:

1) I will not stop thinking about the initial sighting of frog #1 and the way in which he scared the Holy BeJesus out of me.

2) I will continue to itch and freak each time I feel something on me for fear that a frog somehow jumped into my house and onto my being.

2) Tonight's sleep is completely screwed because I am convinced there are other baby frogs that got scooped up in the garbage bags and are sad and separated from their mommy.

I'm a very complicated person...

June 25, 2010

We have a winner!

Congratulations One Frugal Lady - you are going to have a happy mother in law because you won the Dishwasher Art! Look at you gaining points with the MIL - nice going!

Tomorrow when I have more energy I will notify you by email and let you know the next steps.

For everyone else - please check back to The Robin's Nest in the near future for a few reasons:

1) I have some other great giveaways coming up soon and you would not want to miss them. If you know a bride, a man or a wall that looks lonely you will want to check these upcoming giveaways out.

2) I'm super funny and have lots of totally entertaining things to say. Also, I'm not cocky in the least.

Sorry I have not been a good bloggy blog friend this week. I've left this giveaway up for like a week now and have not posted any new material - but if you had lived in my household over the past 10 days you would have done the same. Here are some of my better excuses:

1) I quit my job and took a new one. Now for those of you who do not know, I work from home and my new job will allow me to do that as well- which totally rocks. That change might not seem like a big thing to most of you since I can still work in my pajamas and my commute is still from my bedroom down like 8 stairs to my office, but I've been at my old company for 7.5 years and it is saddening me to make the move. With that being said, I'm SUPER excited about my new opportunity and cannot wait to see what it brings.

2) Construction started in our house a few days ago. We (when I say we, I don't mean me or the hubs, come on really?) are ripping out two windows and turning them into doors that open to our soon to be built 12 foot by 50 foot deck! Yay! If you have lived through construction you know it is very disrupting to the daily normalcy (if you can call it that) of your life.

3) My daughter has had 2 melt downs in the past two days that are not just contenders but clear winners for the Guinness Book of World Records (Have I ever mentioned that my 96 year old grandmother is actually in that book? Well, story for a later time...). Really I'm to the point where I am seriously questioning my abilities as a mother and am wondering if we would all be better off if I just ran away to Uruguay and didn't leave a forwarding address.

4) My husband is leaving for Europe on Sunday for 2 WEEKS. Yes, you read that right. He is leaving me alone with E and Z for two weeks while he gallivants off to Europe for work. I have been doing all of his laundry this week so he can have stuff to wear in Europe. I said Europe as many times as I could to get my point across, did I succeed? I can't imagine I have to elaborate any further on this one. I'm assuming just for the mere fact that Europe is involved and I am not going, I get a sympathy pass on the not blogging thing, right?

Anywho, sorry. I will try to be a better blogger this upcoming week - that is if I have not been gagged and blindfolded by the children while the hubs is away in Europe and no one is around to rescue me until he comes home from Europe.

June 19, 2010


I have got to say this is one product I never knew I needed until I saw it! Now I am loving the seasonal ones and want one for every holiday. It has to make doing dishes more fun, right?

Marti at Dishwasher Art told me a bit about herself:

"I am a retired 70 year old who loved to paint as a hobby. A hobby that was more expensive than profitable. I had all these paintings hanging in my basement with no place to go (friends and relatives already have their walls covered).

One day I was looking at my all white kitchen and knew I had to do something to brighten it up. The only two flat surfaces I had was the refrigerator (which was covered with to do lists and grand kids pictures) and the dishwasher. Then it hit me --the dishwasher would be a perfect place to display my art. After some research and trying various printers my art work was transformed into a magnetic panel. Thinking others might like to jazz up their kitchens, I started my web site.

My art has now found a home in all fifty states as well as many other countries (France, Great Britain, Italy, Canada, Australia, and Germany."

How great is that?

Marti is being nice enough to give away one of the dishwasher panels to Robin's Nest readers.

Rules for entry:

1) Go to dishwasherart.com and tell me which panel you would want if you were to win. Leave a comment on this post. This must be done before any other entries will count. (1 entry)

2) Tweet/blog/shout from your roof top (okay not really, that is dangerous)/ about this giveaway and come back and let me know what you did to spread the word. Make sure and leave a direct link to your posting. (1 entry per medium)

3) You don't have to be a Robin's Nest follower to win but it sure would be nice of you. We have fun over here!

Open to US residents only.

Contest will end on Friday June 25th and winner will be selected at random. Winner will be announced and emailed (please make sure and leave email address in your comment or make sure it is easy for me to find) and has 48 hours to respond. If no response, another winner will be chosen. So on and so forth.

Happy looking and good luck!

Note: Dishwasher Art is providing the panel at no charge to me and I provided my honest opinion. No other compensation was received for this giveaway.

June 17, 2010

Rainbow, rainbow where for art thou?

We had the most beautiful double rainbow last night in Kansas City. (Note: I did not take this picture. It was taken by Holly O'Keefe and it is the actual rainbow from last night.) My daughter could not have been more excited. This was right up her alley. If you ask her what her favorite color is her response is always:

"Weeeeelll, it used to be pink and purple, and before that when I was a baby, it was blue and yellow, but now it is rainbow!"

We happened to be in the car when this magnificent color explosion appeared and we made every attempt to find its end point but alas no leprechauns were to be found. However, it was really fun and I think maybe the thrill of my kids' young lives. We got home, got in pajamas and stared in awe out of my daughter's window for another million hours.

Then as rainbows do, it disappeared. All hell broke loose. E flipped out. She missed the rainbow. At first it was really cute and sweet. Then as is the way with this 5 year old drama queen, it just got to be ridiculous. Major fit of sobbing ensued and all the explanations in the world of how rainbows would not be special if we saw them every day fell on bright red tear-soaked deaf ears.

Exasperated, I finally asked her what it is she would like me to do about the fact that the rainbow was gone and her response: "Paint the sky"

At that point if I had a ladder big enough I would have given it a try.

June 14, 2010

Someone get this kid to preschool

Thank goodness Z man is starting preschool in the fall. His ABC's need some serious work. He sure does look cute doing them though and really you have to give him credit for his big finish. Who taught this kid jazz hands?

June 11, 2010

Summer in my 5 year old's eyes

I completely stole this idea from Yankovich 6 Pack and I am really glad I did.

I asked my daughter to make a list of 30 things she wanted to do this summer and I have shared it below:

1) Go swimming (sweet! we have already done that like 7 times!)

2) Go to the spray park at Uncle Bucky's. (Note: My brother is Uncle Bucky. Bucky is not his name but that is how she said "Uncle Brett" when she was little and it has stuck. Also, Uncle Bucky lives in Washington DC and has a spray park 3 houses down from his house. This one is probably not gonna happen.)

3) Have a little jog

4) Buy special kid jog clothes (what is with her and jogging?)

5) Go to the park (again DONE!)

6) Take a walk in the stroller (We do this all the time. Maybe we have not done it since it was technically "school is out for summer summer time" but we can check this off really easily)

7) Paint

8) Collect leaves

9) Go to the neighborhood park. (There is a tiny little thing I guess you could call a park at 75th and Mission - a major intersection by our house. There is literally a bench there and that is it but since we drive by it 1,435 times a day she really wants to go. I can accommodate that request - maybe we will even walk there in the stroller. Look at me killing lots of birds with very few stones.)

10) Go to the beach. (Hmmm. Oh wait we are going to my parents lake house and we can totally find a beach there. It will be an Oklahoma beach and I don't think that is probably what she is wanting - but it's not my fault she wasn't very specific.)

11) Get the mail (We will do this 5 times a week for the entire summer. She is going to be in hog heaven.)

12) Got to a garden to see pretty things. (Is that a diss on our landscaping?)

13) Have a bike ride (Super simple to accomplish numerous times. This kid is easy!)

14) Buy another snow globe when we go visit Uncle Bucky. (I just visited Uncle Bucky when on my business trip this past weekend. I got her a snow globe and her brother broke within 24 hours of us having it. But yeah, we still aren't going to DC...)

15) Help daddy build a lemonade stand. (Strangely she did not mention actually selling lemonade)

16) Hug and kiss Z. (Seriously how cute is our kid?)

17) Go shopping, like for toys (I knew it had to show up somewhere)

18) Drive to Pump It Up. (Ummm... do we have to go in?)

19) Plant some flowers (again dissing our landscaping)

20) Have a nice, cozy summer. (Oh my gosh. Heart melting. Cute kid)

21) Play the farmer in the dell. And then she said: "Don't worry I will teach you."

22) Get more nail polish. (This kid has like 12 bottles of polish but heck her summer wish list is so easy I think I can accommodate this one.)

23) Buy some sunglasses (Good plan)

24) Cook with mommy (Fortunately she is too young to realize I CANNOT cook.)

25) Do a secret for mommy because you are such a nice mommy. (Aaaah. Probably buttering me up so we can do #17)

26) Make a rainbow. (I mean wow, she is so stinkin' cute)

27) Do the outside exercise. (She loves it when I come home from a jog and I bench press her in our front yard.)

28) Take gymnastics

29) Get my own candle in case my room smells stinky. (Huh??)

30) Play pretend

This has got to be a new tradition. I am going to ask my kids to make this list each summer and see what they say. This was too cute and I am going to to feel like a rock star mom by the end of the summer because we can do just about everything on here!

What do your kids want to do this summer?

June 9, 2010

My first Award!!

I have been crazy busy with work for the past two weeks. By far the busiest I have been in quite some time. Of course those were the exact same two weeks my kids had a break from "school" before their summer session started. On top of the craziness I had to leave town on Saturday morning for work and got home Monday night.

I got to stay at my brother's house though which made the trip infinitely better. His darling house, great wife and adorable kids were a huge perk to my travel.

Anyway, I got home late Monday night and my kids had me up at the crack of dawn. I was exhausted but imagine my surprise when I came home to the coolest thing ever - an award for my blog!

Jenny has a cute blog that I have really enjoyed finding. She has a ton of children and handles it all beautifully. In the small world it continues to be, we actually live very close to one another!

There is the award - isn't it pretty? It truly made my day.

Now there are instructions that go along with the award. I must pass this along to some amazing bloggers and I have to share 10 things about myself that you do not already know. I must say that I do not expect the blogs I list below to do all the instructions that come along with it - I just want to let you know that I love you guys!

1) I am allergic to cats. Boring but true.

2) I have turned into a crier. I cried at the Kindergarten Roundup meeting for my daughter, I cried last night at the rehearsal for her ballet recital. I cry a lot. I was NOT this person before I had kids.

3) I am the youngest of three children - and the only girl. There were definite advantages to that. I was a bit spoiled and I loved it! But I turned out to be a nice person, so it's all good.

4) I have no natural instinct for cooking. My husband can throw things together and make something fabulous. I can follow a recipe to the T and make something mediocre.

5) Although I make fun of him a lot in my blog, I am very proud of my husband. He works really hard for our family and is an amazing and wonderful partner.

6) I know of 11 people whose birthdays are on April 23. I think that is strange.

7) I share the exact same birthday as Nick Lachey - same year and everything. I spent a summer at a school in Switzerland and spent a lot of time with Robert Di Niero's son Raphael. Raphael and I have the same birthday as well - although not the same year.

8) If I could do it all over again, I would have gone to school for interior design. People keep telling me it isn't too late, but I'm entirely too lazy to start all over again.

9) I never missed not having a sister as I was growing up because I had really cool brothers who were very good to me.

10) I just did a post a few days ago about all the tid bits you never wanted to know about me. You can find it here.

In addition here are some great blogs that really deserve this award and places you should definitely spend your free time checking out.

Acting Your Age. This is my dad's blog. It is so cute and he is even more adorable. The blog chronicles his walk to stardom. I do not expect him to pass this award on as I am sure he doesn't read any blogs other than mine and his but I have to give him a shout out!

Momma Amma. Another person who I found that lives very close to me. She is very creative and has super cute kids.

The Mother Load. Another person who lives by me. Kansas must be chalk full of talented blogging ladies. She is funny and has really interesting posts.

Alabaster Cow. This girl is funny, really funny. Enough said. You have to check her out.

Penny Pinchin Mom. She always has the latest deals and coupons and because of her I've scored some great stuff!

Little Green Notebook. She posts such beautiful items that I am in a constant state of stress on choosing which direction I should go in completely redecorating my home!

Live Off Groupon. I'm a Groupon junkie. If you don't know what Groupons are, go here. This guy is living solely off Groupons for a year and it is pretty fascinating. What a fun thing to do!

Lex Loci Lori.
Like me, she is originally an Okie but she currently lives in Colorado (we lived there for about 3 years) so she must be cool.


June 7, 2010

The sensitive father

Like most kids, my kids are picky eaters. But because we live in Kansas City and because my husband recently purchased a new Smoker and has not stopped smoking things for more than a 5 minute period since, my children love BBQ. Gates sauce is a favorite in our household and my daughter will eat it on anything. It isn't normal how much our 5 year old likes it. She loves anything and everything BBQ'd and I know this because I think my husband has smoked every kind of meat known to mankind since he got his new toy.

Today we were driving past a graveyard (bet you are wondering how these are related) and my daughter was really fascinated by it and asked where her great grandfather's graveyard is. I looked at the hubs and kind of gave him the look of why don't you take this one. You see my husband's grandfather was cremated and I was just not sure of how to explain that to her in a delicate manner. I can now for certain tell you how NOT to explain it.

D: "Well honey, when they die some people's bodies are buried like the people in this graveyard."

E: Getting impatient. "I know that dad, I'm asking where Grandpa's grave is."

D: "He doesn't have a grave. His body wasn't buried, it was BBQ'd."

It's unfortunate that we live in the BBQ capital of the world. I'm pretty sure my daughter is never going to eat it again.

June 4, 2010

I've outdone myself this time

Tonight is Jazzoo. It is a super fun party at the zoo that we go to every year. The dress for the evening is "creative black tie"- which puts a lot of pressure on me. Creativity is in my blood, no doubt about that. See the posts here. However for some reason I choke each year. Unlike my mom who as I wrote here last year would probably be able to skin a kangaroo and make it look adorable as her attire for the evening, I freeze when it comes to ideas for the party.

But this year I have really outdone myself. This week and last week have been insanely busy for me with work - I mean insane! And of course to top that off, the kids were on a two week break from school. With these variables I have not had time to come up with anything for Jazzoo -but someone was watching out for me and made it happen anyway.


Sorry for the disgusting picture - of my pale white legs.

Isn't that perfect? I think it is very zoo-like. I'm gonna tell everyone I got in a tussle with a lion! But of course, just like finding the perfect dress for a party and then someone else shows up in it - my friend Lindsey apparently yesterday went out and got the same accessory for herself. She REALLY committed. The lion scraped her wrist, knuckles, both legs and her feet. Geez, my friend group is clearly clumsy!

June 2, 2010

Sometimes I actually get it right

Our daughter is on swim team. I use the term "swim team" loosely as my daughter doesn't know how to swim. At this level it is basically swim lessons.

Our pool has two kiddie pools and one big pool. Totally my fault but because our little guy has to stay in the kiddie pool our daughter spends her time there as well. Because of this her swimming skills are not what they should be.

Yesterday was her first "lesson" and there were about 15 kids in the class. The kids started in the big pool holding onto the side with one hand and holding onto the kick board with the other. They numbered the kids into 1's, 2's, 3's and 4's. E was a 1.

They asked each group to use their kick boards and kick to the other side of the pool.

1's took off. E stayed.
2's took off. E stayed.
3's took off. E stayed.
4's took off. E stayed.

She was the only child left.

I'm a rule follower. Always have been and so I was a bit taken aback that E had not done what was asked of her.

I went up to one of the coaches and said "She is a 1 but she didn't go." He said, "oh this is just for fun, it's okay."

I think he thought I was a bystander tattling on her. I went on to tell him that I am her mother and I think she needs some extra help as she is scared. I walked away feeling like a despicable stage mom.

A couple of coaches went to her and helped her across. I could see her fear begin to turn into a smile. By the end of the lesson, the coaches had convinced her to actually let go of the side and swim to them a few feet away. Stage mom was on the sideline in tears.

I was so proud of her for taking that leap of faith. She struggled a bit and I had to resist the urge to plunge into the pool fully clothed and swim her to safety. She went under water for a second and came up coughing and crying - but she did it! The coach held her and calmed her - but who was there to calm me? Thank God big sunglasses are fashionable.

At times I get so frustrated with her because I know she can do so much more than she is willing to try. She is a cautious child and even though I was a rule follower, I was willing to try everything. Although she was literally the only child in the group that could not swim, I was beaming with pride when she kicked her little legs and held herself up unassisted for about 3.6 seconds.

I cheered and hugged her and made a huge deal about how she swam.

Her response? "No I didn't, I sank."

I pointed out that before she sank, she did swim and we now know that she can do it.

Although she walked away from that lesson never wanting to swim again I was able to turn it around and make her proud of what she accomplished. She is actually looking forward to her next lesson tomorrow and so am I. Even if she is behind her peer group she is working harder and trying harder than any of them. For that she is my little hero.

Most of the time I totally screw things up and give my children oodles of ammunition for the therapists they will inevitably have but this time I think I really got it right.