Find Good In Every Day

One mom's attempt at finding good in every day of this chaotic world.

Dare I Jinx It? June 23, 2010

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 4:00 pm

I fear writing this post will jinx all the good things that have been happening this week, but I am so excited that I just had to share!

Some of you may remember that last fall Mason had a very hard time transitioning to her new preschool.  It took her about 3 weeks to have a tear-free drop-off.  Many days were so bad, she would run away from me and race down the hall to the door.  (Pure embarrassment to have teachers and other parents wonder why the heck you are chasing a kid down the hall and practically dragging her into the classroom.)  With that kind of history, you can understand why I was very anxious about Mason’s first day of summer camp at a brand new school where she knew absolutely no one.

I was unsure how to broach the topic with her.  I didn’t want to make a big deal about it and the fact that she would not know anyone.  I didn’t want to tell her she should be excited and happy and then have her fear disappointing me.  So just last week, I asked her how she was feeling about it.  She said she was nervous.  I validated that feeling and told her that I completely understood.  We talked about it how might be scary to not know anyone but that she could introduce herself or have the teacher help her.  And I told her that at any point in the day, she could ask the teacher if she could call me if she was sad.  We visited the school and saw her classroom, and everything seemed in place.  But still I was nervous about what would actually happen at drop-off.

The good news?  Mason has been magnificent!!  It is the third day of camp, and she seems to be having a blast.  We are always the first to arrive at camp, and she just gives Cooper and I a hug and then pushes us out the door.  No tears, no whimpers, no holding on – just ready to start her day!  Last night at dinner when we talked about our favorite parts of the day, she said “summer camp.”  Then she said, “Actually, I think every night my favorite part of the day will be summer camp.”  Umm…  where did my daughter go?  Who is this mature girl sitting next to me?

No matter how mature you are, a lollipop can always hit the spot!

To make it even more official that Mason is growing up, she got her very first bike last week.  We took it out to the park last night, and she was riding around the basketball court with training wheels being her only support.  She gets a little nervous on bumps, but it’s her first day, so there’s plenty of time for confidence to build.

Oh, the places she will go.

And when we went to Target to get some more sneakers for her since that’s all she is allowed to wear at summer camp, she picked out some nice pink ones.  I told her that we could get them, but she still had to wear her other ones some days.  She gave me a look, and I said that I thought her old ones were still super cute.  With a straight face and absolutely no whine in her voice, she said, “Mom, these are my shoes.  Not yours.  And I don’t think the others are that cute.”  Valid point.  How can I argue with that?  I guess I won’t be able to pick out clothes and shoes for her anymore.  She really is growing up right before our eyes, and I love it!  Let’s hope the jinx is a moot point.

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My Nephew Is Here! June 18, 2010

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 2:06 pm
I am finally an aunt!  After a couple days of contractions and pain, my sister got admitted to the hospital on Wednesday and started the long haul of labor.  My enthusiasm and excitement kept me up with my mom and my sister’s in-laws until 3:37 am on Thursday when we got the news that Jonathan Hayes was born.  At 7lbs 15oz, he is healthy and beautiful.  My sister stuck it out and was amazing.  She and Scott now have a beautiful baby boy to love and cuddle.  Ok, enough talk…  Let’s get to the pictures since I know that is all everyone wants to see!

Grandparents and Great Grandma heard the good news!

Jonathan Hayes - 7 lbs 15 oz.

First family picture

Mason and Cooper already love their new cousin

Meema is especially smitten

I think Hayes is pretty awesome too!

Hayes will be well loved in this family!

Just a side note – When Jeremy told Mason and Cooper that their cousin, Hayes, was born, Cooper’s first question was “He play lacrosse?”  Oh man, Hayes… you better watch out!

 

Seven Year Itch June 10, 2010

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 1:45 pm

On June 1st, my hubby and I celebrated our seven year anniversary.  It is hard to believe that it has been seven years.  We have a house and 2 kids and a lot of wonderful memories to show for the past seven years.  But we don’t have the seven year itch.  At least in the traditional sense of the phrase.

I do however have the seven year itch with all the items we registered for 7 years ago for the wedding.  I’m sick of a lot of it and am ready for some new stuff.  Wouldn’t it be nice if you could do a” seven year itch” registry?  I know seven years is not a milestone year, but history and research show that seven years is the time when most people start to re-evaluate their relationship.  Sadly, it is the average number of years marriages last in North America.  I’m not ready to end my relationship with Jeremy – nor will I ever be!  But I am ready to end my relationship with some of our basic household items.  I’m itchin’ for new stuff!  Here is my wish list:

1.  Towels

I honestly don’t even remember what towels we registered for.  Was it the Pottery Barn ones or the Restoration Hardware ones?  It’s confusing because I know we also got new towels when we refinished the one and only bathroom in our house the summer I was pregnant with Mason (good timing, huh?)  Either way, I’m ready for new towels.  Isn’t there some sort of life span of a towel?  I would like to think so.  Unfortunately Jeremy does not agree.  I think we have an old beach towel from his childhood.  (Nostalgia is great except when he thinks we should still be using this 25 year old towel.)

Somehow my towels just aren’t doing it for me these days.  They have lost their plushness, and I can’t seem to get a mildew smell out of some of them no matter what I do!  And I need new colors.  Our bathroom is painted tan, our tile is stone colored, and our towels are tan, yellow, greenish tan, white and blue.  The blue and tan are my least favorites and therefore I don’t use them much.  (Wait a minute…  should I be revealing all this?  I often give guests the blue and tan ones.  Hmm…  is that why guests don’t often shower at my house?  Ok, that settles it, I need new towels for our guests!  That’s a worthy cause, right?)  The yellow and greenish tan (just a weird color now after hundreds of washings) towels are ok, but I want color!  I want a pop!  The point of having a tan bathroom was so I could decorate with any color.

It’s time.  I’m heading over to Home Goods this weekend to see what kind of deal I can find on towels!

2.  Dishes

Jeremy and I like green and yellow.  If you came to our house you would see this in almost every room.  We love decorating with green and yellow.  But it has to stop somewhere.  I think that place is in dishes.  We went with a Pottery Barn dish that came in cream and sage green.  A year or so after our wedding, they came out with a golden yellow and darker green in the same dish, so we bought a few of those to add more pop to our collection.  Sadly, these dishes have not held up well.  We only have two or three of each type that is not chipped or cracked.  And I’m bored with them.

I hosted a baby shower a few years ago for my dear friend, Megan, and for that I bought cheap white square plates from Ikea.  They have been my go to plate ever since.  I reach to the highest shelf in our cabinets every day to get these plates rather than taking the green or yellow ones from the lowest shelf.  And they have held up beautifully.  Thank you, Ikea!  Last year we were gifted some new bowls that were white (with a small green decoration) to better match our new favorite plates.  Now we just need smaller plates to go with our white theme, and we could get rid of the entire PB collection.  I think white is just classic.  If ever in doubt, register for white plates.  No matter how much you think you love your “pattern,” you will soon tire of it and want something new.  You can never go wrong with white!

3.  Clothes

Ok, I didn’t register for clothes, but I do think I still have clothes I wore seven years ago.  And yes, I think I still wear them too.  I’m an old married woman with kids now…  I think I need a wardrobe to match!

4.  Baking sheets

With as much as I use my baking sheets, I feel like I need to replace them every so often to get the best out of them.  My air-insulated ones aren’t horrible, but I do have a couple of old sheets that have seen better days.  It’s time to boost my bakeware collection.  Cookie sheets, cake pans,  glass dishes with tops, etc.  I could go on and on.  And actually my Wishpot Wish List does go on and on about new baking items I drool over.

5.  Pots and Pans

This one isn’t so much a replacement, but an addition.  I love my All-Clad pots and pans.  Even when I make our family dish of conkelon (burnt yellow rice), all it takes is a little soaking to get all the burned leftovers off the bottom of the pan.  Yes, they have lost their beautiful luster, but that just shows good wear and tear on something as nice as All-Clad.  What I really wish I had registered for all those 7 years ago was a Le Creuset Round French Oven.  My life is not complete without a good 5 1/2 quart one.  There are so many recipes I have kept aside just waiting for this dish to enter my life.  Oh the things I could cook!  (And yes, I would get purple, not white because some things are just meant to be full of color and Le Creuset pot is one of them!)

So while I would never itch in my relationship with Jeremy, I am wanting to scratch my way to new “registry” items.  My new backyard kind of puts a damper on the finances for supporting this need to scratch, especially since I’ll need some new outdoor dishes and accessories once it’s all done.  But an old married woman can dream, right?  And itch…  and scratch…

 

Graduation Tears June 7, 2010

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 1:55 pm

Normally when you think of tears and graduation, you assume the tears are caused by the fact that graduation signifies the end of one thing and the beginning of another.  What you don’t always assume is that the tears signify an intense fear of performing in front of a crowd of people.

My little graduate in between crying spells.

This was the case with Mason last week as her preschool class celebrated their graduation.  Honestly, I’ve had a hard time starting this post.  I’ve been unsure about how to portray my feelings during the graduation.  To tell you the truth, my first response was embarrassment.  My second response was anger.  And my final response was understanding and sympathy.  It just took a bit to get there.  Let me explain each feeling.

When I first walked up to school, the whole class was outside getting their picture taken.  I noticed Mason was off to the side with her teacher, but I just thought she was getting her cap readjusted.  As soon as she saw me, she started walking towards me and crying.  I went over and immediately tried to calm her down and get her back in line with her class.  No such luck.  The other kids were staring at her and other parents had started congregating and noticing Mason.  I eventually got her calmed down enough to get the picture above, but then Jeremy showed up, which elicited more crying.  At this point, the kids were lined up and parents were being ushered into the auditorium.  Mason would not let go of our hands.  We finally just had to leave to get inside.  She ended up holding hands with one of her teachers while crying during the processional.  Other parents were videotaping, taking countless pictures, and her my daughter was bawling her eyes out for all to see and hear.  I was embarrassed.  I felt she was ruining everyone else’s special moment.

This is what caused my emotions to turn to anger.  Why couldn’t she suck it up and deal like all the other kids?  Why was she still crying even though all the other kids were smiling and happy?  Hadn’t she been looking forward to this all week?  She had been telling me everyday that she couldn’t wait for graduation.  She had excitedly told me about their “practice” the day before.  What had happened?  The anger didn’t last too long because I went back to being embarrassed when Jeremy had to go up on stage and pull her off to get her to stop crying so that everyone could hear the teacher’s speech.

Mason sat in Jeremy’s lap the rest of the graduation.  Despite having practiced all week at home the songs they were singing, she did not want to be up on stage singing with her friends.  For those of you who know Mason, you know she rarely gives up the opportunity to sing.  This is when my emotions turned to sympathy and understanding.  My daughter was scared to death of performing in front of all these strangers.  No matter that she could sing the songs  by herself at home in front of Cooper and I (and even her friend, Luka), she could not do it in front of these strangers.  She was scared, and I felt so bad for her.

When diplomas were handed out, she couldn’t even go up there to accept it alone.  Jeremy had to take her up, and she still cried her eyes out the second she started walking up the steps to the stage.

Mason and her teacher - finally the hint of a smile.

She finally calmed down when it was all over.  She was relieved, I’m sure.  We got a few pictures of her with little glimmers of a smile, but I could still feel her pain.  All the kids kept asking her what was wrong, and she wouldn’t talk.  Parents kept giving me sympathetic glances, and I felt I had to laugh it off and act like it didn’t matter.  But it did.  It mattered that my daughter, who is otherwise fearless when it comes to roller coasters, turbulence on airplanes and any other thrill seeking experience, is completely scared of performing in public.

We got back to her classroom for cake and punch, and I could just feel the tension melting away.  She had survived.  Heck, I had survived.  And I came out learning so much more about my own daughter.  I’ve known she’s been shy at certain times.  It’s hard to ignore.  (Case in point – her dance recital) This was definite proof that we made the right decision to keep her in preschool another year.  Hopefully she’ll build enough confidence that at next year’s graduation (the real one), she’ll be able to stand up on stage with her friends.  It’s not to say that she’ll be over this stage fright in one year, but we hope that we can find ways to help her deal with the fear.

And me?  Will I be able to keep from being embarrassed and angry if she does do this again?  I think so.  I realized I have probably invoked the same embarrassment and anger in my mom and Jeremy…  I am seriously afraid of flying – more specifically of taking off and hitting turbulence that is unpredicted.  My mom and Jeremy have both witnessed my white knuckles on the arm rests and my babbling of “We’re going to crash” and my yelps of fear when the plane dips in an air pocket.  Who wouldn’t be embarrassed to be associated to someone so inconsolable?  Who wouldn’t be angry after all their attempts to calm me down have failed?

I have to take Mason’s fear in stride.  She will persevere.  I know she has it in her.   I have learned that my daughter is not as fearless as she seems at home.  She is nervous in front of those she does not know.  No matter how loud she belts out songs at home with her family as her audience, she is not comfortable doing it in front of strangers.  Maybe she just doesn’t want to upstage everyone with her talent?  That must be it, right?  In all serious, though, I love her no matter what.  We will be there to sympathize with her and understand her fears as she continues to grow and mature and learn.  And at that high school graduation in 2025?  I think her tears will be more for the expected reasons.  And my tears will be due to sheer pride.

 

More Progress – Seeing the Vision

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 8:02 am

More progress is being made in the backyard.  One wall is officially done, and we’re finally starting to see the vision we have had through all these years.  We’re so excited to see so much progress every single day.  For awhile, it was just digging and bigger piles of dirt, but now that things are getting built, we have something to look forward to at the end of each day.

The low wall is complete - it's perfect for sitting too!

The tall wall is still being built, but I expect it complete today.

Of course, as with every construction project, plans change as we go along.  An unexpected change was an additional wall on the fence side of the stairs (you can kind of see the problem in the tall wall picture above.)  Because we dug so far down to build the patio, there is a lot of ground leftover without anything to hold it up.  And the fence was built to the top of the yard as it was before, but now there is exposed dirt below the fence.  After weeks of back and forth, we have decided we need an additional wall next to the fence.  This obviously means more money and more time.  Originally we were told all walls would be done by the end of this week, and I had hopes for completion by Father’s Day.  But we just feel this additional wall is the only real way to solve the problem.  All other solutions would just look like a band-aid and we wouldn’t feel good about it.

Not only has the project changed along the way, but we’ve also realized that to truly have a complete look, we need to add more things to our list of to-dos.  My new to-do list:

1.  Paint basement door purple to match all other exterior doors.

2.  New storm doors on basement door and side kitchen door.

3.  New hose holder

4.  Lots and lots of new plants (this was known beforehand, but becomes apparent as we see the destruction of current plants)

5.  Figure out how to kill off the current weed/grass combination we have and replant shade loving grass seed.

So my Father’s Day completion date is far from a reality at this point, but I’m still excited about the progress.  I can see the vision and like what I see so far!

 

The Countdown Begins June 3, 2010

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 4:06 pm

In reality, the countdown began 9  months ago for Jen and Scott, but now they are in the final weeks…  The waiting game begins.

In the meantime, we had one more shower for Jen.  It was wonderful!  It was so nice to catch up with family and friends and celebrate Jen, Scott, and Baby Lightning.

Four-layered chocolate cake with white buttercream icing. Yum is an understatement!

Mason and Delaney were happy to help Jen open her presents. They were the "ribbon keepers."

Debbie and Ronan came all the way up from Raleigh. It was such a treat - I mean just look at those brown eyes!

The boys did their own thing during the shower, but came after to help with the cleanup and enjoy a brew or two... or three...

 

All in all, it was a successful weekend of celebration, family, and definitely fun!  If only I could throw baby showers all the time…  Seriously!  No matter the stress of getting ready and wanting everything to be perfect, there is such satisfaction and joy in bringing people together for celebration – no matter the event! 

So 17 days and counting until Baby Lightning’s due date.  I’m hoping for an early arrival – for Jen’s sake in this heat!  But no matter when he decides to come, there will be much to celebrate!