Tag Archives: summer

Let’s get loud!

If a cannibal ate his way through Hollywood, why would he eat Jennifer Lopez last?

Because there’s always room for J-Lo!

#unclejokes

Ok, yeah that was bad. I just used it as an introduction to my little discussion on weight loss. Jennifer Lopez has created a weight loss program called BodyLab that mainly comprises of an app for food and workout tracking and, if you really want to, some “supplement capsules.” I just like that I can make my own workout, pick my own food, and if I don’t want to use particular products, I don’t have to.

I’ve been intellectually conscious of the fact that I should lose weight, in the context of just trying to take better care of myself. But I truly believe that lots of things actually do taste better than how skinny feels. That’s probably because I have no freaking clue how skinny feels, but I know how bacon tastes (and donuts, and cake).

So as I said yesterday, summer is just about here, and that includes bathing suits and picnics. Most years, I get to this point and say, “oh well! I guess I’ll have to wait until next year to look better!” But this year, I chose to tell myself, “well, I’m sure I can do *something* now.”

Today was day 3 walking on the track. Two miles Monday, one mile Tuesday, and two miles today. At this rate, I’ll be walking 8 miles a week. It’s not a lot, especially since it’s walking, but it’s more than I did last week. And I broke down and bought the BodyLab “7 Day Ultra Fast Slim Kit” (TM). It was only $20, and I’m pretty sure I won’t have to buy it repeatedly. It’s supposed to “detox and cleanse” and “rev up the metabolism,” but if it does ANYTHING more than I would have done without it, it’s worth it to me. But I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Here’s to being more comfortable with myself. And maybe Jennifer Lopez’s butt.

Win the battle, the war might follow

This is effectively the first real day of Summer Vacation. So far, books and magazines have been read, laundry has been prepared, tables have been cleaned, and a bed has been made.

I made a list of little chores that can be done almost every day and put them in a bowl. In order to get computer time, five of those chores must be finished. The boys finished all 5 each in about 2 hours. But the best part was that no one minded doing the chores and earning the time. At our current rate, all the boys will use their computer time by lunch. If they want more computer time, or some time on the Wii, they can do more chores after lunch. I also love that I don’t feel as guilty about letting them play games since they did something productive first.

Here’s to keeping up the good work.

Ruh roh…

(NOTE: I wrote this entry last week but something went wrong with the Auto-Save feature. I’m going to try to replicate it as best I can…)

While sitting in the Auditorium waiting for The Hubs to arrive and The Regulator’s Spring Concert to start, I had a rather startling realization:  there were only two weeks left to the school year.

If you lived anywhere– let’s face it, anywhere— this past winter, you’d agree that it didn’t feel as though the school year was ever going to end. But it is, and as usual, I feel woefully unprepared.

I had had such high hopes for this summer– vacations, day trips, and a move to a glorious house in suburbia. But alas, this was not to be. I’ve been tutoring here and there, but it doesn’t pull in all that much. The big vacation is already paid for, but aside from that, I’ll have to wait and see if I land a work-from-home gig that Mrs. Legal Lawyer told me about. If I don’t get that… well.  Can’t feel sorry for myself if that’s the result.

I always say that I’ll get the kids working on their basic skills and reading like crazy over the summer, but that doesn’t really happen, either. The Regulator needs to improve his handwriting like woah, and they could all use more trips to the library. The Hubs and I love books, but we really can’t afford to be buying all of them! The Summer Reading Program at town libraries is pretty great, but we just haven’t been able to keep up  with the assignments. I think we need to spend more time there and get the boys a little more familiar with their reading interests and limitations (why am I bringing home 6 novels per kid?).

And even though we’re not moving, it’s not too early to start preparing. I intend to  start tossing all the stuff we don’t need, maybe even selling what we can. Who knows? We might even be able to be a little happier in the space we have when there’s less stuff in it. We have a storage unit and most of that stuff hasn’t seen the light of day in a couple years!

The Regulator is also transitioning to *gasp* MIDDLE SCHOOL. I hear tell the 5th grade is one of the toughest years in our school system. Probably just as well that we’re not moving anywhere… he’s not one to handle stress. I want to prepare him, though: study skills, note taking, organization. Things that will make the actual content a non-issue (which it pretty much is– he’s above average intelligence-wise and I have the objective test results to prove it).

There’s always swimming and soccer, and maybe if we can squeeze in a day trip, it’ll be a grand time. Anything to keep them from being plugged in all damn day.  Anything to keep them from making a royal mess of our home.

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Oh… if I use this. Poor boys won’t know what hit them! They’re downright lucky we don’t have a pet (or a farmstead, for that matter… how the heck old is this list?!?!).

Here’s to family fun and making memories.

A side “note,” if you will

In case you haven’t noticed, I do tend to quote pop songs, mostly from the ’80s.

I’m almost too young for most folk to believe this, but I was “there” when MTV started. My dad, who moved to the US in the ’70s, was a big fan of popular American radio. That coupled with the advent of cable TV meant that when that magical combination of music and television arrived, my family was all over it.

My sister (who is 8 1/2 years older than I) was definitely the fangirl of the ’80s music. She’s the one who had the Journey, Styx, and Duran Duran posters all over our room. The one who got to go to the Rush concert at Madison Square Garden. The one who wore the fingerless lace gloves and jelly bangles. The one who will probably be embarrassed if she finds out that I’ve written that last part down.

Saturdays at my house, especially in the summer, meant sitting at the dining room table with my summer library choices and MTV playing in the background. I adored watching the videos… “She Blinded Me With Science,” “Rio,” and “Dancing in the Dark.” Most of them were pretty cheesy, even then. The clothes and the hair… Dee Snider and David Lee Roth made me laugh.

Girls just wanted to have fun, and I would dance if I wanted to, leaving my friends behind. My house was in the middle of my street, and I knew that the owner of a lonely heart was better than the owner of a broken heart. Martha Quinn and Mark Goodman introduced me and the rest of America to Madonna, Prince, and Devo.

Even today, when I’m listening to my satellite radio and a song from the ’80s comes on, I’m taken back to my childhood. I recall the words that were buried in the recesses of my brain faster than even I can believe it.

Too rah, too rah tah loo rah.
He bop, she bop, a we bop.
Too shy-shy, hush-hush, eye-to-eye.

“Springsteen, Madonna, way before Nirvana
There was U2, and Blondie, and music still on MTV.”

You get what I’m saying.

Can you dig it?

(Woomp! There it is…)

This summer’s kid’s reading program at the library is themed “Dig into Reading.” They got cups, pencils, journals, worksheets, and a paper shovel to decorate that they can hang up in the library. I think the shovel decorating has a contest attached; the weekly worksheets definitely do. Talk about incentives!

Pint-Size Genius got his first library card (Regulator and Toughie got theirs last year) and everybody got a couple books, including me.

summer books
And that’s just a few of them.

Pint-Size Genius has already read almost all the books he borrowed– I guess he caught the reading bug. We’ll be going back soon, and that makes me happy. I think every mom wants her kids to have a love of learning, and loving reading is the surest path to learning.

Hot in Herre…

Summer is starting with a bang, and by that I mean a heat wave. Sunny and humid most of the day, followed by a thunderstorm… I guess I moved to Florida and didn’t know it. 

I don’t like to complain about the weather- I try not to complain about anything, and prefer to roll with it. But something about the heat…. makes me cranky and incapable of proper grammar usage. It’s sad, really; crabby and incoherent is no way to parent. Thank goodness I have access to a pool. 

Every year I try to find more and better ways to fill the time during summer vacation with my kids. This year will involve many more books and a bowling alley (a nearby place offers 2 free games for kids every day of summer– hello, rainy mornings!) 

So here’s to a good, eventful, fun summer break!

Summertime…

…and the living is busy! (Sorry, Mr. Gershwin.) But there will be no electronic hypnosis this summer!

I sent Pint-Size Genius* to Pre-K for the last time. He had a great time, since it was the year-end party. When I came to pick him, he started to cry when he hugged his teacher, and collected himself quickly…but he cried for a solid half-hour when he got home. He’s going to miss his friends! Totally broke my heart. He didn’t even eat lunch… which is actually just as well, because he wouldn’t have wanted the tuna lettuce wraps I made. (They went over really well with The Regulator* and Toughie,* which surprised me!)

I decided to offer him a distraction by taking him and his brothers to the pool. It was Buttercup’s* first time in the bathing suit. Of course she looked great, but I gotta say: she really enjoyed being in the water! Splashing and giggling, she totally tuckered herself out. In fact, the boys are all tuckered out too.

We have all three boys in one room, and as such we used to put them all to bed at once, but since they’re getting older, they want to be treated differently. So now we have staggered bedtimes— each one a half-hour later than the younger. Honestly it’s easier on me, too: I only have to worry about one set of teeth getting brushed, one set of prayers, one tucking in at a time. 

Buttercup gets to go last, but that’s really because she naps twice a day. Sometimes, like tonight, she’s tired and cranky and singing to me the song of her people….but it doesn’t bother me. It bothered me when my oldest was a baby; but I finally learned that they can’t much help it, can they? So why complain? 

* I finally decided on nicknames for the kids; I’ll explain them in the next post.

For how long, exactly?

(Oh, Mr. Cooper, such a tease….but school really is only out for summer.)

So the grammar school year is done. There’s a year-end party in Pre-K, so Pint-Size Genius has one more day. (NOTE: I’m going to try out these nicknames for now. Maybe they’ll stick.)

I am mentally prepared for the boys to be awake and bored at 5 am tomorrow. I’m also in possession of the mental fortitude to prevent the TV being their babysitter this summer. We’re joining the Summer Book Club at the Library, and the supply of extra bathing suits is already at the pool. All of them have workbooks and notebooks to practice school skills, and the chore charts are ready to go.

In September, all three boys will be spending their days in school. There might be more than coffee in my mug that day…but probably not, since there will be an almost one-year-old with me. Or I might be heading to work myself. I don’t really know until it happens. 

On a barely related note… I can’t stand the word ‘vacay.’ Maybe because it’s not a word. I don’t usually say anything, but it just might come up. I’m going to do my damndest to make sure this blog doesn’t become a running list of “things that bug me.” So thanks for your consideration.