Find Good In Every Day

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

The Highs and Lows of Homework February 25, 2014

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 9:11 pm

“I hate homework!” I hear that sentiment almost every day.  Sometimes it is from Cooper, sometimes Mason.  Really, it should be me saying it every single day.  Because really?  I do hate homework.

It causes such stress in our house – for all three of us.  (Jeremy luckily gets out of the homework hell every day since he is still at work.)   Here is why I hate homework:

1) Cooper usually thinks he doesn’t have homework.  (Not sure why he still thinks that after 6 months in kindergarten, though.)  So when I tell him it is time for homework, he throws a tantrum.

2) Mason’s homework consists of a half sheet of paper with math problems on them that she could do in her sleep; spelling words that require little to no assistance; and then 10 minutes of reading.  This is basically what she was doing in kindergarten in Maryland, so forgive me for being unimpressed.

3) Part of Cooper’s homework has been to cut out pictures of objects that start with the letters of the week.  The only magazines I get are adult women magazines.  G is for Garnier.  P is for Pantene.  S is for Sleep Number.  It’s just not working for my 6-year-old son.

4) When the kids have playdates right after school (which is often since their best friends ride the bus and they concoct elaborate plans to persuade  the parents to let them play together), we’re doing homework at the witching hour making the experience 10 times worse!

I could probably go on… (and feel free to share how much you hate homework below),  but I’ll stop for now and try to find the positive.   I love seeing Mason get excited about math.  She LOVES it and loves challenging herself.  I feel so proud when Cooper reads me a book full of sight words.  It’s exciting to see Mason get engrossed in the book she’s reading.  And I especially love when Cooper asks Mason for help (even though she is quick to give it without being asked!)

Most of the time our homework hour is pretty rough.  And how will it be in a few years when that homework HOUR becomes HOURS?  I cringe at the thought of it.  If anyone has any tips, I will certainly take them!

For now, we’ll ride on the homework roller coaster of highs and lows and just hope that tomorrow is better.

Advertisements
 

Sophisticated (?) Dining Room Makeover February 7, 2014

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 8:40 pm

One more room down!  We’re well on our way to getting all the wallpaper removed from this house.  Because the dining room is a major “flow” room (you go through it to get anywhere), I felt it was the best choice for my next project.  So again, I started in the afternoons and evenings – removing strip by strip of wallpaper.  But I don’t want to get ahead of myself.  First, here is what it looked like when we bought our house.

Luckily only wallpaper above the chair rail!

Luckily only wallpaper above the chair rail!

We removed the carpets before we even moved in, so that we could enjoy the beautiful hardwood floors.  Originally, this room was not on the top of our list for renovation.  The wallpaper wasn’t offensive and was actually similar to our decorating color palette.  But after an unfortunate spill in the bathroom right above, the ceiling had stains on it.  I always noticed them, and soon this became a top priority for me.

IMG_4925

The in-between stage of using it for what it was intended – eating, socializing, homework, chatting, celebrations, etc.

So back to the “during phase…  It was about two weeks of afternoons and evenings getting all the wallpaper off.  This particular wallpaper was almost like vinyl.  So we pulled the top layer off first to then be able to steam the backing and scrape it off.  The kids loved pulling the top layer off.  And Jeremy’s height proved helpful again.

I had a little bit of help with the wallpaper this time around.

I had lots more help with the wallpaper this time around.

The hardest part of this process was getting around that air conditioner you see in the picture above and below.  It was so hard to get in the corner – with my scraper, with a paintbrush, with anything.  That air conditioner was my nemesis this time around.  (Although the glue was pretty awful too!)

I was determined not to use tape, so slow and steady for me!

I was determined not to use tape, so slow and steady for me!

Finally a primed room!

Finally a primed room!

After painting the ceiling and priming the whole room, we were ready to go.  I started painting the bottom Friday after work.  And since I was in the mode and had all the paint out, Jeremy and I decided to just go ahead and finish that section and add an additional project…  The stairs down to the basement.  They are right off the dining room, so by painting the stairwell the same color (Benjamin Moore’s Old Prairie) as under the chair rail, we’re keeping the color flow.

The basement stairwell was gross, so new paint for that as well!

The basement stairwell was gross, so new paint for that as well!

We were up until midnight, but it was so worth it.  Going down the stairs to the basement is much more pleasant now.  A new light switch and the paint make all the difference!  Even though we were sore from all the glue scraping, priming and painting, we had to push through the next day.  Not only was Jeremy’s birthday coming up, but we were having people over for the Superbowl, so I definitely wanted it done by then.

Luckily we had a little more help.

Luckily we had a little more help.

Another whole day of painting above the chair rail (Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter), and voila! A finished room.  Then it was time for the finishing touches.  New curtains (IKEA), a new rug (Ballard Designs), and moving some pictures around.  We are so happy with the result, although we feel it is a little more sophisticated than any other room we have.   What do you think?

Officially done!

Officially done!

This picture shows the true color better.  And our new rug....  some of you may be surprised knowing our style.

This picture shows the true color better. And our new rug…. some of you may be surprised knowing our style.

Whoops - how did this picture get in here?  Just proof of how much use this room (and table) gets!

Whoops – how did this picture get in here? Just proof of how much use this room (and table) gets!

Overall, my new favorite room in the house.

Overall, my new favorite room in the house.

It was a tough redo (on our arms and shoulders), but so worth it in the end.  Can’t wait to have many more breakfasts, dinners, celebrations, game nights, homework triumphs, holidays and conversations in this room.  Come on over and join us!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Christmas Post – Part 3 (and final) February 5, 2014

Filed under: Daily Blog — Robin @ findgoodineveryday @ 4:48 pm

Yes, it’s February.  Yes, it’s way past Christmas.  And yes, I’ve been slacking on posting lately.  I do apologize, but hope I can make it up to you with a few posts over the next few weeks.  I have lots on which to catch you up!

But back to good ole December…  You know…  Early winter when we hadn’t gotten much snow; the kids hadn’t missed any school for snow days, and the temperature hadn’t dropped into the single digits.  Ah… the good ole days.

So after a wonderfully relaxing Christmas at Nana and Papa’s, we headed out to West Virginia to see Meema and the rest of my family.   Jen, Scott, Hayes and Rhys joined us, and we got to celebrating yet another Christmas.  When all the cousins are together, craziness ensued, and this was no exception.

Meema loves having all her grandkids together!

Meema loves having all her grandkids together!

Rhys definitely wanted to get in on the action.

Rhys definitely wanted to get in on the action.

 

We had to get outside while we could!  Family walks are the best.

We had to get outside while we could! Family walks are the best.

Family pictures are pretty good too (when everyone looks at the same time!)

Family pictures are pretty good too (when everyone looks at the same time!)

The action finally got to him.

The action finally got to him.

After all the fun outside and in Meema’s cool kid-focused basement, it was time for more presents.  We had so much to be thankful for this year.  I am always amazed at my sister’s ability to give truly thoughtful gifts.  And Meema spoils the kids (and us) with lots of fun stuff.  But I love just watching everyone open their presents.  We are a “one-at-a-time” family so it takes a little longer, but it’s definitely worth it!

Hayes tried so hard to be patient waiting for his next turn.

Hayes tried so hard to be patient waiting for his next turn.

And Mason loves being the "gifter" making sure everyone has one to open for their next turn.

And Mason loves being the “gifter” making sure everyone has one to open for their next turn.

Best Gift Ever!  This is for Meema's porch.  And yes, it is a necessary reminder.

Best Gift Ever! This is for Meema’s porch. And yes, it is a necessary reminder.

After presents, a delicious dinner, long and tedious bedtime routines, the grown-ups finally got to settle down with a beer or glass of wine.  Much needed after the long day.  By Sunday it was raining and the husbands had to head home.  Scott left around lunch to get back for work while the rest of us went bowling.  Good rainy day fun!  Sadly, Jeremy left late Sunday night to get back for work.  His flight was majorly delayed, and I was thankful to have Meema join me on the long drive to BWI and for Jen to get my kids to bed.  Another long day!

One of my favorite parts of being a realtor is the flexibility.  It is the main reason I took the job.  It means I can work from anywhere and still enjoy trips, time with my family, and extended holidays.  Since the kids didn’t have to be back in school until January 2nd and real estate slows down a bit, we decided to stay with my mom for a couple of extra days.  That allowed us more time with Meema, Jen, Rhys and Hayes and some time to see a few old friends.  A cold day at the playground with Annie and kids, a quick hang out with the Hucks and a yummy lunch with the Goldsteins.  We were in the car a lot, but worth it.

Forever friends.

Forever friends.

We spent our New Year’s Eve away from Jeremy, but I think he enjoyed his time alone testing the kids’ new Skylanders game at home.  Meanwhile, Mason, Cooper, Meema, Jerry and I ate Tommy’s Pizza while watching “Super Buddies.”  (I must love my kids a lot to have watched two of the “Buddies” movies with them!)  We had an 8pm midnight for the kids and then the grownups watched “New Year’s Eve.”  A chill night, but there was no need for anything grande.  I was eager to be able to start heading home and back to our routine the next day.  Surprisingly, we hit no traffic on the way home on New Year’s Day.  I was a little bummed we had to get straight back to work and school the next day, but Mother Nature must have heard my woes because she dumped a major snowstorm on us the next day causing the kids’ school to close early and to have a snow day on Friday.  Much needed rest (and celebration for Coop’s birthday!)

We loved our visit with everyone and loved our three Christmases.  Who knows how many more years we’ll be doing that, but for now, it works.  We’re just grateful that our families are so awesome and that we can still travel to see them fairly easily.   We’re keeping old traditions alive while also making new ones, and that is the perfect mix for me!