Saturday, December 2, 2017

Thanksgiving 2017

Ack! Our Christmas tree went up and I still haven't posted the best of the best from my favorite holiday!

This year, we had a pretty low-key Thanksgiving. My parents were in town, but Susie and Sean celebrated with Sean's parents, and Jason took advantage of the extra days off work to see Ireland with his brother Jon. But we still had plenty of good food and family time to make it a Thanksgiving to remember!

Molly made the cranberries (wearing hot pink lipstick) - recipe from my great-great grandmother :)

Grandpa reading to the boys

Annual Flying Turkey 5k photo

Snuggled up with popcorn and a movie for one of 2 Thanksgiving break sleepovers

Me and my girl at the Lincoln Park Zoo Lights
Jason and his brother at O'Grady castle in Ireland

Now that it's December, I'm in total Christmas mode (even though it's 50 degrees here and I'm contemplating a run outside). Quote of the day comes from Jason this morning:

"Putting on some holiday music ... what do you guys want to listen to? Bing Crosby or Wham!?"

Note: we chose Wham!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

My favorite girl

Every night, and probably a few other times throughout the day, I tell Molly she's my favorite girl. It's true. She is! Tonight, we snuggled up on the couch and watched Project Runway together and I just felt so dang happy.
Two peas in a pod
And then, Google assistant made me a totally random video with snippets from my phone and I couldn't stop watching it. It manages to capture Molly's spirit without really making much sense. Ha! Enjoy:

Saturday, October 21, 2017

What's cookin'?

A potential kitchen renovation is what! We've been back and forth with a kitchen designer and I think we're getting ready to do this. Are we crazy? The plan is to tear down the wall between the kitchen and dining room and add a peninsula counter.

I can't tell you how much I'm dying for bar stools! When we have people over, everyone always wants to hang out in the kitchen, and with our current set-up, there's really nowhere for people to congregate.

The other thing I'm excited about is moving our computer desk out of the family room and into the kitchen/dining room area. I like the idea having a desk near the kitchen where Molly can do homework while we're cooking dinner. And it will also free up some much-needed space in our family room.

We're still finalizing the plans, but this should end up being the basic layout. I imagine it will take a few months to get the permits and figure out the cabinets, etc, but the ball is officially rolling!

Fabulous Fall

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous these last few weeks and we're doing our best to make the most of it. Northwestern football, lacrosse, door to door Girl Scout sales. It's been all good times over here except for the Cubs losing to the Dodgers and missing their chance at a second World Series run. That one still hurts.

Here are a few of the highlights:
From Homecoming weekend ... fun weekend, but a devastating loss to Penn State
Using her lacrosse stick to scoop leaves

Post game celebration

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

So how's it going?

I'll start by saying that I love my new schedule! It's been a little all over the place these first few weeks, and I've had to switch my day off a couple of times to accommodate meetings, but whatever. I have time to breathe! Time to walk Molly to school. Time to pay bills, clean up the house, and put away the laundry. Time to have an impromptu coffee with a friend.

I feel happier, and less rushed, and I'm loving the extra time with Molly. Though today, I must admit, I sent her to aftercare anyway and treated myself to 9 holes of golf. The weather was just TOO good.
Starting to look more consistent! My best 9 yet. No disaster holes at least.
Molly is also doing really well in second grade. At least I think so ... I'm not getting as much info out of her as I did last year! She's starting to answer my questions with, "Uh, Mom, you know." No Molls, I don't know! That's why I'm asking :) 

She always looks happy when I pick her up though, which is a good sign. I thought having her in 2 different aftercare programs would be complicated, but she seems to be taking it all in stride and always knows where she needs to go.

Molly has also added a new set of friends to her rotation -- 3 really nice girls who love to pretend they are snow leopards (oh, to be a second grader!). That seems to have eased some of the tension with her other friendships. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we will get a break from friend drama for the year!!

Molly at our block party ... she asked to have her face painted like the Target dog, but I think she kind of looks like a member of KISS :) 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Another nut bites the dust

We've known for about 5 years now that Molly is allergic to walnuts and pecans, but we haven't been sure about some of the other tree nuts. Well, now we know about hazelnuts!

Molly had one delicious bite of Nutella drizzle on Sunday night before she started breaking out in hives and said she felt like wasps were stinging her face and tongue :(

I always have an Epi Pen and Benadryl with me in my purse and store Benadryl tablets in the glove compartment of my car ... but OF COURSE the night that Molly had an allergic reaction was a night when we rode our bikes to dinner and I didn't have a purse or a car.

Jason sprinted down the street to CVS and bought a bottle of Children's Benadryl, which we quickly gave her to try and calm down the reaction. Then he pedaled furiously home to get the car and Epi Pen while I watched to see what the Benadryl would do.

When Jason picked us up, Molly still had hives and swollen lips and was complaining about the feeling of wasps, so we decided to take her in to the ER. If we gave her the Epi Pen injection ourselves, we'd still have to go to the ER for observation, so we decided to just go straight there and have the nurse do it. Easy decision since the hospital was only 2 minutes away!

It didn't end up being that dramatic of a night -- epinephrine starts to work almost as soon as it is given, so most of our time in the hospital was spent watching Molly sleep and waiting to make sure she didn't have a rebound reaction.

Jason and I felt like terrible parents for letting the exposure happen and for not being prepared. On the other hand, we've always wondered about Nutella and ... now we know!

My poor baby. She looked so small in the hospital bed, but handled everything like a pro.
Then she woke up at home the next morning and asked if it was all a dream! 

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Ask and you shall receive ...

August has been a tough month for me at work -- early mornings, long hours. Jason has had to do just about everything at home. Thank goodness he didn't have to travel much this summer! Looking back, I can see that the intensity has been building steadily over the last year or so. When I had to miss Molly's first day of school (and then later found out that she cried at drop off), it felt like enough was enough!

In a spur of the moment decision, I emailed my boss to ask for part time/reduced hours and almost just as fast, I found out I got it! Why didn't I speak up sooner??

Starting mid-Sept, I'll be home every Friday. Not working from home and sweating over my computer at the dining room table from 8am to 6pm, but just ... home. I can walk Molly to school at 9 with the other kids. I can go to the grocery store in the middle of the day (the middle of the day ... what?!). Maybe I'll get to work out for an hour or read a magazine. And then I can pick Molly up when the bell rings at 3:30. We can stay and play at the playground, maybe have a friend over for an impromptu playdate (again - what?!), or just walk home and have a couple of hours together to do whatever we want before dinner.

This is how I dream it will be in my head at least :) We'll see soon enough!

My little artist. I didn't get to see this in person -- I was out the door before she was out of bed on the first day -- but at least I have a cute picture from Jason :)