Prepping for Little Brother

Wednesday, January 21, 2015 1 comment
Big Brother School gave us lots of great ideas for preparing T for the arrival of his baby brother. 

Here are a few:
*Take a picture of you and your child to the hospital. (We chose our pictures last night!)

*Have big brother buy something for the baby. (He's requested a visit to the hospital gift shop!)

*Read lots of books about siblings. (I'm sooo all over this one!)

*Pack a bag of goodies so big brother will have something to do at the hospital. (We're on it!)

*Spend lots of time with your child before the baby arrives. (Always!)

Here are a few more from me (the not expert!)

*Get some big brother gear! I couldn't resist! The first is from Children's Place and the second is from Etsy. 
*Buy gifts for big brother, too! (We are planning one for the hospital and one for home.) 

*Talk, talk, talk about feelings! This is a big change and we sooo want the lines of communication open! Mommy is talking about her feelings, Daddy is too. Hopefully that will carry over with T!

We are less than a week and I am trying to get all of our ducks in a row! Feel free to share anytlast minute advice! 

Big Brother School

Tuesday, January 20, 2015 2 comments
If you are going to be the World's Best Big Brother, you need to go the Big Brother School! 

That's exactly what T did this weekend! Our hospital provides a sibling class along with tours and parenting classes. It was a fantastic experience for our little family!

The class started with some basics-where the baby is, how it is growing, etc. There were four families in our class and one amazing teacher, Miss Pam.
This is serious business!

After choosing a baby, our first big lesson was diaper changing. 

Daddy intervened at my request. I wanted Daddy to remember what do do, too! :)

Next up, the perfect swaddle. While she taught the siblings these great how to steps, she also talked about how fragile the baby is. She also kept saying, "just like when you were a baby." It was great!
I think he is going to rock this!!

Next up, how to properly hold the baby! Back against the chair, nice and tall, bend one elbow, use the other hand to support the baby's body. Miss Pam modeled for us!
He did it! He did it!

Our last step was visiting the nursery. Ahhh! We saw four sweet little newborn baby boys. Of course, I cried like a baby. T just smiled. It kind of felt like this was really going to happen. We are really about to welcome a newborn into our lives and hearts. With one week to go, I guess now is a good time to realize that! :)
We wrapped up Big Brother School with graduation! He received a coloring book and crayons, his official certificate and a coupon for ice cream from McDonald's when he comes back for the baby's birth. He was thrilled!

They also included tips for parents to be. In the coming days, I'll be sharing those and a few things we have up our sleeves, too! 

We give Sibling School two big thumbs up and so appreciate that the hospital provides this opportunity for families!

Do you have any tips for our big brother to be (or his parents!?!)

What We're Reading Sunday AND Monday

Monday, January 19, 2015 1 comment

T is all about Martin Luther King, Jr. Now that I think about it, he's always been a fan. (It all started with A's love for this civil rights hero.) We've visited the memorial in Washington, we've read books and we've had conversations--but I think this is a conversation we simply can't have enough.

At school this week, his class has been talking about MLK, too. They made a little book and watched the BrainpopJr video. T came home talking about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and how he changed America. It made my heart smile. I asked him if he remembered the memorial in DC. He said, "yes, but I remember most standing where he made his famous speech on the steps. Remember that mommy, you cried."  I do remember. He went on to say that he told his friends about that. 

I decided to bring my favorite books home to share with T 
By far my favorite, Martin's Big Words by Doreen Rappaport and illustrated by Bryan Collier, is breathtaking. It is also very appropriate for the PreK-3rd grade crowd. In my classroom, we read it, discuss the words, and then make a Wordle of our class' BIG WORDS. With T, we read it, discussed it, and continued a conversation about treating others the way you want to be treated. 

T and I also watched this free clip from National Geographic Kids. 
 While we are spending this 3 day weekend prepping for Baby No Name and spoiling T rotten, we are also remembering Martin Luther King and hoping to do our part to continue his legacy. We're continuing the conversation......

Happy Birthday to T!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015 No comments
Happy birthday to the best and sweetest little boy in the whole entire universe! He made me a mommy and I love him more than the moon and the stars! 
You are my sunshine!






Wishing I could put on the brakes and freeze time. Where did six years go? Oh I know, right into my heart and soul. I love being this guy's one and only and I think I just might be the luckiest mommy in the whole wide world.

Disney 2015

Tuesday, January 13, 2015 No comments
No, no, don't let the title fool you! We are not planning a trip to Disney in 2015........yet. :)

This Disney 2015 is all about the movies heading our way! We are movie people and several of these releases are high on our list!

Here's what Disney has in store for us this year!
Cinderella! I wasn't so sure, but now that I have seen the trailer, I say yes!

Monkey Kingdom YES!! My class and our 3rd grade book buddies will be seeing this at the theater together! 

Strange Magic  While I'm not so sure, T is especially excited about this one!

Of course, there are others-McFarland USA (looks great too,) Avengers (not happening,) Tomorrowland and Inside Out (maybe,) Ant Man (Pops will love it,) The Jungle Book (I just love the original!) The Good Dinosaur, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens (again, Pops will love it.)

Which one are you excited to see?

My One Little Word for 2015!

Monday, January 12, 2015 No comments
So what will my one little word for 2015 be? I don't do resolutions anymore, so I have to really stick to this one.little.word. 

Choosing the word or waiting for the word to choose me is hard! You can read about my previous words here. But what, oh what is my word for 2015? What is the word I will live by, hold onto, embrace and celebrate all year long?

I've had a few contenders....

but none of them resonated with me. None of them made my heart smile enough. 

Last year's LIVE was good to me. I performed in front of a huge audience, traveled more, presented new workshops, tried not to sweat the small stuff, spent more time with the people I love, and snuggled when I should have been cleaning the house! I LIVED

2014 also broke my heart. I need a comeback with this one little word. I need rejuvenation for 2015! 

One night, T and I were having a conversation about numbers. He was talking about how one was so small and that it wasn't a lot but that he liked one dollars. It was a good talk. I explained that one is HUGE and that is all about perspective. No, perspective is not my word, but it is a good one!! 

It reminded me of the book One by Kathryn Otoshi (which I highly recommend for kids and grownups!)  It's all about how one can make a difference.
That's when it happened. That's when my word walked right up and gave me a big ol' kiss on the cheek! My one little word for 2015 is ONE.
One as in......
      it only takes one
      one day at a time
      one good deed
      it will happen one day
      one life to live
      be the one
      one more try
      one new member to our family
One and I are ready to remember the best parts of 2014 and embrace the year ahead. 

What is your one little word? 

What We're Reading Sunday!

Sunday, January 11, 2015 No comments
Friends, I feel guilty (not really) just writing this post all about what we're reading! We spent this whole week trying to find the routine we lost over the break! Surely I'm not alone in that! 

However, we never miss reading with T! He read his nightly school reading as usual but we also had another nice little reading surprise. 

T read Fly Guys' Amazing Tricks to us. It was going to be our bedtime story one night and he declared, "I'll just read it to you" and he did. 
The next night, he read another Fly Guy to me. I told him while all of this reading business was fine and dandy, mommy is in charge of bedtime stories! So we compromised and took turns reading chapters the next night. #selfishmommy

As for me, I was reading report cards and emails and lesson plans and previewing our next chapter book for read aloud (Mr. Popper's Penguins.) Not such an exciting reading week for mommy! However, my Amy Poehler book arrived so I see happy reading in my future!!

What are you reading? 

When T Arrived!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015 No comments
Almost six years ago this week, we were anxiously awaiting the arrival of T. We had passed the parents to be class with flying colors. His room was ready. The car seat was loaded and my hospital bag was packed. Thing was, T wasn't quite ready to join us! My sweet doctor allowed me to go a week over and he arrived in the middle of the month, in the middle of the night. 

In a matter of minutes, I became a mommy. 
I had big plans-regular delivery, being pushed to the car holding my little prince, and a strict sleep schedule. 

We know what God does when we plan, right? :) 

We had an emergency c-section when T kicked off the last monitor they tried. I was calm and ready and trusted the process. When I saw him, I cried. I just smiled and cried. He was so big and so little all at once-9 pounds, 10 ounces and long, really long. 
Pops and A checking out baby T! 
Over the next few days, family and friends came. We had snuggles and breast feeding classes and pictures and pictures, and more pictures. I was recovering beautifully and he was perfect. It was bliss. Then N changed his diaper and noticed an irregularity (that's code for blood in the stool.) The nurse came, took the diaper and assured us that it was normal. Then it happened again. Within minutes, they came into the room and explained that they needed to take T for tests. They wheeled him out and I cried. I just sat there and cried. 
In what was surely the longest wait of my life, he was admitted into NICU and we were told he would not be going home with us. We stayed until the last minute on the last night. N drove me home without our little guy and without a word.  I didn't cry. I was numb. 
The specialists and nurses were unbelievable. They loved T! He was so big compared to the other babies in NICU. Even though I was so sad he was there, we felt so blessed that on all accounts-our guy was healthy. They ran tests and tried formulas, ran more tests and monitored him. We met with specialist after specialist. There was never a definite cause, but they said his intestines may not have fully formed and they needed a few days or that is was a protein deficiency. Our favorite doctor told us that due to the protein issue, he would likely have sensitive skin, tummy issues, and dental issues. For the record, she was right on all accounts! 

On day 9, he came home. Best.Day.Ever

So what about that sleep schedule? Well, his tummy sensitivity continued and he was not a big sleeper.....for years

I just can't get enough of this guy almost six years later even when he stays up later and wakes up earlier!  As we prepare for his 6th birthday party and the year ahead, I'm telling him his story (without all of the details) and we're counting our blessings. 

January is our month. :)

Baby No Name, The Trouble Naming Number 2!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015 4 comments
Having baby number two is pretty exciting, but having baby number two of the same sex presents a bit of a challenge......a name.

It was hard enough to decide with our first guy, but here we are four weeks out and Baby No Name is starting to stick!

I think it was my friend Shelly who once said choosing the name for the second child of the same sex is hard because you've already used your first string names. You're moving to second string and there is nothing you can do about it. 

Family names? No
Book characters? No
Names that sound good with T? That's the goal!

NOTHING! We've got nothing people! I like one name, T likes another, and N likes neither! Ahh!
Image courtesy of
Make no mistake, T has a list of names and at the top of his list is his own name. That's right, he wants to name the baby after himself. His other choices are Elvis and Walt Disney. 

Naming your baby is hard! You want the name to be perfect! You have to make sure it sounds right, doesn't rhyme with anything inappropriate, etc. 

Adding to this naming toughness is the fact that I am a teacher! You say a name and a child's face pops into my head. It's true! That memory can be one of smiles for days or fear and woe! It's a challenge friends, it's a challenge! 

What we do know is that our son will have one American name and one Indian name, just like T. That's pretty much it!

Friends and strangers are throwing names at us left and right! Want to join the fun? Please do! 

What should we name our January bundle of joy? Maybe you'll be better at this than we are!  

Day of Positivity

Monday, January 5, 2015 No comments
The first day back in the grind! I'm off to school today for a teacher workday. Now my neighbor calls these days teacher playdays. I of course, set him straight! We'll have a meeting a or two, I'll work on report  cards, plan for the week ahead, etc. It's no playday! 

That first day is the hardest. Your belly yearns for all the bad food you've been eating. Your nap alarm continues to go off in your head. You're wearing clothes but you are daydreaming of wearing your jammies. It's the first day blues.

Well, good news! Today has officially been declared The Day of Positivity by Spongebob! In honor of his upcoming movie (out 2/6) Spongebob wants us all to share the positive vibe! 
If you have lots of love for Spongebob or no love at all, everyone should be able to agree on this! We need more positive energy! 

Turn those first day blues into the first day grooves with these tips! 

*Turn on the radio while you work! Yes, I'll be jamming out while lesson planning!

*Tell everyone good morning!

*Buy your pal a soda or a delicious coffee! 

*Snuggle with your child and/or spouse and tell them all the things you love about them! You'll both feel great!
*Hang a picture of your child somewhere new today, at eye level. Every time you feel a little first day blue sneaking up on you, glance up! 

You are ready for the day! Happy Day of Positivity! Celebrate today and everyday! 

Thank You Santa!

Sunday, January 4, 2015 No comments
What We're Reading Sunday is all about the goodies we found under the tree!

By far, T's favorite is this Guinness World Records Book. He's OBSESSED! 
Almost as cool, but not quite, are these treasures! 

Santa did not disappoint! 

*Santa put an Amazon gift card in my stocking and my books haven't quite made it here, yet! I'm tracking them though! :)

Did you receive a fab new book? Don't be shy, share!

Hello 2015!

Thursday, January 1, 2015 No comments
My first post of the New Year! I hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday! We did! My family came to our house for Christmas for the very first time! It was an awesome gift! Would you believe I didn't even take pictures? I enjoyed every minute but did not capture even one on film (is it ok to say "on film" anymore?) 

All pouting aside, it was great and I did not want them to leave! Since their departure, we've been goofing off with Daddy, doing a little light shopping, and prepping for Baby No Name. 

We rang in the New Year with fireworks in the backyard with our amazing neighbors followed by the best snuggles on the couch. 
I think we all know I could not wait to bid adieu to 2014! So here's to 2015, friends! May it be your best year, yet! 


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