Friday, October 29, 2010 turn the kiddos over to my husband

so I could take the night off and take tour of WP and the cemetery.

Let me be clear...I love my children.  And I certainly love my husband.  But having just had the week on my own, I was ready to take the night off.

No particular bad behaviors are remembered.  There were no trips to the ER.  There weren't even any middle-of-the-night stomach bugs to report.  I only changed one set of wet sheets, got up to three different nightmares, and intervened in a handful of disputes. 

Nonetheless, this week seemed particularly eventful with two trips to the city, a visit from my mom, and several after-school activities.

This is the part though where I can't say no.  The kids had a Halloween fest to attend.  Mark was surviving on adrenaline (given he had been awake since about 3:30 am our time en-route back here to the states from Egypt).  And I couldn't, in good faith, make him take the kiddos alone.  So, I chose the Halloween festival.

In the end, I missed the tour.  But I did enjoy watching: Isabella win the cake walk, Audrey in her daddy's arms, Will play all of the games he could, and Abbey dance around.  Family time is great too.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 be a guest audience member at the Rachel Ray Show

What fun it was hanging out in the city with a few friends!  Starbucks, Rachel Ray, and Chipotle it was an awesome day!  We were 'pumped up' and dressed in our jewel tones.

"Jazz", April, The Jolly Green Giant, & Allison

Who knew it was the 25th anniversary year of Back to the Future!  Now we all do...and as audience members today we were treated to Huey Lewis playing a short gig on the harmonica (promoting his new CD) and discussing his hit song on Back to the Future (Power of Love and Back in Time).

We were lucky enough to be given the Trilogy of Back to the Future and a few copies of her magazine.

It was a fun experience!

And my day was topped off by a trip to one of my favorite eateries EVER...Chippotle!  Thank goodness for the Chipotle ap!

Monday, October 25, 2010 take some great fall photos

I didn't really capture the amazing fall colors like I wanted to; but I really captured a few great memories!

Audrey, Abbey, and Mimi

I loved the colors of the berries.
Look at those eyes!

Memories to cherish.

Saturday, October 23, 2010 go to the American Girl Store

Isabella, Mimi, and Abbey

 What a great day in the city with my beautiful mom, and my two of my sweet daughters on an amazing fall day.

You can see how excited my little one is!

The hair salon was especially fun!

for both of them...

 While they might not remember all of the little details of days like today...sometimes its about creating memories for myself. 

Thursday, October 21, 2010 attend The Blaze

What a great family evening!

I heard about this event called The Blaze the first year we moved to West Point.  And for two years in a row I didn't order tickets early enough before they sold out.  The event has tickets every half hour from 630 to 930 and I believe they sell about 750 tickets for each slot.  Crazy so many people attend this!

What a fun event to go to at least once!  The pumpkin carvings are amazing!  I read there are over 4000 hand carved pumpkins...the designs on many of them are so intricate and many are very clever.  These pumpkins are all carved by local artists and they spend two days in the middle of each week, recarving, the pumpkins to get ready for the next weekend.

Unfortunately, the photos I took were a little too blurry because the shutter speed was so slow.  However, I found this person took many photos that were much better than mine.

The weather was perfect.  And it certainly is always enjoyable to take a stroll on a brisk fall evening under a full moon.  Hanging out with my two big kids and husband made it even more perfect.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010 try to not be stressed

My feathers are not typically easily ruffled.

And I don't like to be idle. 

I didn't want to feel stressed today.  I do not like feeling as if I don't have my ducks in a row.

So I prepared for the day.  Or at least I thought I had. 

This is what I did:

I got up extra early (5:20) to get myself ready before the kids woke up.

I was showered, dressed, read the news, checked the weather, answered my emails,and my hair was blown dry by 6:30.

I picked out the kids' clothes before they went to bed.  (They were all dressed within five minutes of waking up!)

Their backpacks were ready before they got up (e.g., lunch, homework, and the necessary notes).

I prepped my materials for work last night.

I got the birthday present wrapped and ready for the party we attended between my work day and my volunteer evening at the book fair (see earlier post).

This is what I did not do and should have:

I should have made the coffee last night.  It probably isn't a good idea to not have a cup of coffee to start a day like this!

I should have eaten breakfast.  Especially since I forgot to make the coffee.

I should have called in sick.

I am still trying to wind down from my day of over-stimulation.

Monday, October 18, 2010 begin to make exercise a priority again

I don't particularly like the act of exercising.  I do however, LOVE how I feel afterward.  And I like that fact that when (and if) I exercise I don't have to worry about what I eat.

So every week for the past several weeks, Monday has been my day to 'start my routine' again.  I usually do great for a few days and then there are always several reasons why I find I can't.  None of them are very good...they are just excuses.

So today was a new day.  I swam this evening and feel great about it.  And even better than going today, I have my plan laid out for tomorrow.  A nice little run in the morning with my girls by Trophy Point.  And its going to be a lovely fall day outside!

Sunday, October 17, 2010 set up a Scholastic Bookfair!

I love fairs (this is the one I grew up going to).  And I love books (a great one I have read recently).  So when I heard that my daughter's school was having a book fair, I thought, "I should be in charge of it (because I love those two things)!"

Or one could say (my husband) that I was roped into this fiasco because I don't know how to say no.

Either way, it is true, I am in charge of one of our school's biggest fundraisers.

I thought it would be easy to just do something for a whole week as opposed to lots of different volunteer opportunities throughout the year.  My husband has done a different calculation of 'time spent' in his head.

So today, my darling daughter helped me set up Sacred Heart's Fall 2010 Scholastic Book fair, all afternoon.  She was great help!

Thursday, October 14, 2010 find a bargain!

So my friend Meghan and I have a love of finding old items and repurposing them for various roles around our home.  To give Meghan full credit...she really introduced me to the concept.

Now that she lives here with me at West Point, we have this quest to search out new places to find 'old stuff'.  About two months ago I came across a blog that mentions this amazing, four-story antique shop.  And today we decided to go find this place. 

Meghan and I had a great time together.  For living as close as we do, we don't really get to spend as much quality time together as we would like.  And today, was a great day to catch up.  But I would have to say our day to seek out treasures was really disappointing.  While this store certainly had OODLES of items, they were all way out of our price range.

So instead of photos of my new finds, here are a few of my goodwill finds in the past few weeks....after a coat of spray paint, voila!  New life!
A pair of ugly wooden fish....
Now a pair of fun new bookends!

A pair of chickens....

A new centerpiece!  (Till Mark demoted them to another room; he is NOT a fan of my chickens.)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010 enjoy the apple farm

The weather was amazing today.

We went to a farm called Lawrence Farms, up in Newburgh, NY.  A charming, family-owned farm with incredibly kind and welcoming staff.  I have been to many orchards and farms in my life (fall is my favorite season) and this is one of my favorites.  It makes me sad that we won't be able to visit this orchard yet again next fall.

It could not have been any better.  We were all together. 

The kids had so much fun, watching the animals, playing in the village, and eating plenty of apples and warm donuts.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010 be a good listener

Sometimes it seems like the days go so fast.  And I am always moving.  Always doing one more thing.  Putting away one more dish.  Picking up one more toy.  Reading one more email.  Like most, I have this mind that is always moving on to the future even before I have really experienced the present.

Today I wanted to just listen.  This is what I heard:

My dog sigh; when I sat to pet her for a few minutes, while we were home together alone this morning.

My son tell me that he wanted me to write him a note in his lunch everyday.

My youngest daughter giggle when I was teaching her what a butterfly kiss was at bedtime.

My middle daughter's faint snore from her deep slumber a few moments ago.

A parent saying thanks for helping her little man be a bit more successful in school this year.

My husband, saying he loved me with a sweet kiss, when I told him I would take the dog for a walk this evening.

I am so glad I wanted to listen today.

Monday, October 11, 2010 be outside with my kids

It was nice staying home.

What a beautiful holiday weekend.  Thank you Christopher Columbus.

My daughter, Isabella, made this project in Kindergarten.  In honor of Columbus Day.

Watching football with friends (GO GREEN).


Catching up on tasks around the house.

We spent time outside, had simple meals, and barely got dressed each day.

I wish I had photos to share.

Saturday, October 9, 2010 have a peacefull evening after a day of work

Let me start by saying I LOVE and ADORE my children.  I would do anything for them.  But I tend to really dislike evenings after I have worked becuase they are so stressful.  The scene typically involves my little girls crying at my legs, my big kids scrambling to do their chores, and me rushing to get dinner on the table. 

My intent had been to have dinner ready when I came home (to avoid the crying at my legs) and there was no reason to have my big kids scramble because the chores could wait.  After all it was the beginning of the weekend!

So I prepared.  I had the house picked up before I left for work.  Everything for dinner was ready (mostly because I was also making dinner for my neighbor and I didn't want her meal to be late).  I even snuck home in the middle of my day for the final touches.

Kids can make one scrap any plans...especially when the word 'peace' is used (unless of course they are sleeping). 

Thursday, October 7, 2010 tidy my first floor

And it is a task that I did not accomplish.

You see there are many, many rooms in the enormous house that we have.

We are lucky enough to live in a beautiful, 100-year-old historic home with a 'seasonal-view' of the Hudson River here at West Point.

While I love this home of ours...keeping it tidy, with four small children, is a task that eludes me.

The first floor of our home includes: Living Room, Study, Dining Room, Kitchen, and Kitchen nook.

One would think it should not too troublesome to tidy up.  But is my nemesis!

Since I tend to cook like the Swedish Chef (think The Muppets), my kitchen can take as long to clean as it might for me to cook a meal.  The office in the catch-all for all of the paperwork that no one knows what to do with.  And finally, the living room is where the kids play. 

I won't get into the laudry list of "to-do's" that I completed today.  And there were many of them...but the bottom line is today I wanted to tidy my first floor AND I didn't.  Instead, I sit here, procrastinate, and blog a bit.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010 start a blog

So I began following blogs just a short while ago.  One of my best friends began one and although it took me forever, to figure out how to even become a follower, I quickly was a devotee to her posts.

After a few months of following her posts, I started to look through some of her favorites, and now, I really find myself wasting serious time, just reading blogs.  (This is the primary reason why I still do NOT have a facebook account; I would waste even more time!)

Anyhow, I find that my interests are varied and day to day my ambitions change.  But I have realized that I start every day with the thought, "Today I want...."

This blog is about me and my ambitions day-to-day.  Someday, maybe my children will know a little bit about me.