First up in January was New Year's. Duh. Well, we were all still recovering from the heinous Christmas plague, and I ended up with it part II. Then Stella again. Luckily, we were all ready in time for the big birthday bash---for baby girl's 4th birthday at the fantastic birthday venue of Monkey Joe's.
Stella, who refused to sit in the inflatable birthday throne, made out like a bandit with wonderful presents, love and friends to share the day. And the Hello Kitty cake was a success and tasted great too. Hooray. Although I do think I might be out of the cake business for awhile. James was a typical brother---totally mad the entire party that it wasn't his party.
Stella is an experiement in fashion. The girl has impeccable fashion taste. You might not think so at first glance, but really, she's very Mary Kate Olsen with her stylishly, intentionally mismatched leggings, boots, coats and the like. The girl likes her shoes, her clothes. She wakes up in the morning, and first thing she does? She changes clothes.
And James is down two teeth!
We recently went and checked out a new school for the kiddos. We aren't in the best public school district (read: the worst in Gwinnett county), and therefore, we are looking into private school. And luckily, where we live - private school is very (very) reasonably priced. The Expert and I visited one a few weeks ago, and it was hauntingly familiar to where I attended school for years. Uniforms, small classes, sweet teachers. I was having deja vu. The Expert loved it. I felt a little hestitant---but only for other reasons---that being, education is about to happen. Yes, they have been in "school," but kindergarten? That's the real stuff. And here comes homework and molding kids into human beings---and to be honest, I got a tad freaked out by the whole thing.
Luckily for James and Stella, they have one parent who doesn't stick his head in the sand.
Last weekend, Stella wasn't feeling great again. We had plans to go down to Savannah --- but I ended up just going down with James. We had a great time, just the two of us, and I was blown away at how "easy" it was to only "have" one child for the weekend. Wow. The noise? Non-existant. The messes? Not hardly one.
Stella really missed her Bubba. Once they were back in each other's field of terror, the noise started again ("James hit me" and "No I didn't you baby") and the mess.. well, not like my house has ever been clean, but the mess these kids can make----epic.
Still, I find it wonderful that the munchkins have each other. And because they are so close in age, they really are quite close.
My favorite thing is when they get to giggling... one will start, the other will follow, and for ten or fifteen minutes, they will literally be a pile of laughter on the floor of the living room---not knowing who started the laughs... but just knowing something was funny.
Last week, Stella handed me her water bottle and said, "Open!"
I looked at her like she had three heads.
"Open? What do we say, Stella?"
She looked at me like I was an idiot.
Then James chimed in. "Open sesame?"
And that was it. We were ALL a barrel of laughs at that.
Life is getting busier and the kids are getting bigger, smarter, sweeter and funnier. I've known for some time now that they are little "people," but sometimes I forget just how much so. They are sponges. They repeat everything.
Bouncing off the inside of the car last night as we waited in a parking lot....
"You guys are being freaking crazy." [Ooops.]
Immediately, James was chanting, "We're freaking craaaaaazy. We're freaking craaaaaazy."
But those are the things I don't worry about. Because they are good kids. They are smart and sweet, and their mother should not say "freaking," but I'm sure mothers say worse - and I won't be the first mom to blame for the kids landing in the princpals' office.
Some mornings or afternoons, I can get one in my "left lap" and the other in my "right lap" and we can just snuggle for an hour. Those times are fewer and farther between than I would like.
Sometimes I wonder if I wasn't training for an Ironman, if I would truly spend more time with James and Stella. But I think whether I train or work or stay-at-home.... that there would always be something in the way of precious QT with the kids. It's all about doing the best I can with what I have. And right now, I pray that my kids are seeing Mom and Dad who are trying to be the best parents, the best healthy parents that they can be. That they see Mom working hard at work in a full-time job, then working like crazy at a second job, and training for triathlon.
They already love being outside and running and biking. I feel like we can take some credit for that. :)