Wednesday, April 16

Midnight Moments

As I mentioned the other day, Charlie has been waking up in the middle of the night for about the past week.  I'm not exactly sure what's causing it, but she's always been my trouble sleeper, so I'm pretty used to it.

As much as I love and need my sleep, I am finding joy in these middle of the night hours spent with her.  The first night it happened, she started crying around midnight.  I went in her room to see if I could comfort her a bit.  After getting her some milk and a fresh diaper, Charlie requested I read a story to her.  I had her get up out of bed, and chose her own book for me to read.  This is what she came back with.


 Obviously Charlie doesn't remember what this book is about, but I do.  Tears pricked in the corner of my eyes as I gathered her in my lap to read it.  As I read the soothing words over and over, the tears slipped down, just as they did when my grandma would read this story to me as a little girl.

Once the story was over, I asked Charlie what song she wanted me to sing.  "Baby Mine" she replied and snuggled a little deeper under the blanket.  This song has always been a favorite of hers, and she sang along for a bit with me.

As Charlie got drowsier, I tucked the blanket closer around her, and kissed her goodnight, pouring all my love for her into that kiss.

As I tiptoed out of her room, I felt so blessed to have had those precious moments with my littlest.  I absolutely love my sleep, but there's something so wonderful about those quiet, midnight wake-ups.

Monday, April 14

Monday Mish Mash

It may be Monday, and I may have been up for two hours in the middle of the night, but I still know this is going to be a good day.  I think the slight sunburn I'm rocking from yesterday and the fact that it's going to flirt with 80* again today have something to do with it!

We're just going to ignore the fact that it will be in the 30's again by Wednesday.

Emmy was fine all morning as we were getting ready for school, but then got very upset when we were in the car.  She kept saying that she missed Braddock and was nervous about going to school.  I gave her teacher a head's up to keep an eye on her.  I hope she has a good day!!  It's going to be a long one for me as I'm already counting down the minutes until I can get her.

I finally took out my 'big girl camera' after months of collecting dusts and snapped a few pictures of the girls!  I'll share some more of these later in the week.

Emmy's dance recital information was handed out during class the other day, and we were notified that the original date after Father's Day changed.  They moved it up.  To when we will be in Disney:(  I will not confirm or deny if I immediately started crying in the waiting room.  Yes, being in Disney is by far the best reason to miss a dance recital, but I didn't think it was too much to ask to be able to do both.

The recital is something Emmy has been talking about forever as well, so in order to soften the blow, we are going to tell her about Disney {we were originally going to wait until the day before we left}  My bestie got them some shirts that say "I'm going to Disney World" and we're going to have the girls open them this Friday!

Does anyone have any experience with a lazy eye in toddlers?  I'd love to ask you a few questions!

Emmy drew these pictures of Skip and I the other night.  It's amazing how her drawings have progressed from stick figures to this!  I'm still stuck in stick figures.

I pretty much shoved the girls outside every free moment we had this weekend.  After the months and months and months of winter, I am determined to enjoy every second!

Charlie has woken up crying in the middle of the night, every night, for about the past week.  She calms down once I go in there for a bit, and eventually falls asleep on her own.  Not sure what's going on there, but I'm drinking plenty of coffee until I figure it out!

I'm scrambling for what to do for Easter this year.  Husb has to go into work at 1:00 and will be there till late at night, so it's just going to be me and the girls.  I thought about taking the girls out to dinner, but as we're going to start potty training with Charlie the day before, that's probably not the best idea.

Also, omg we are about two weeks away from no more diapers ever!!  Cue the angels singing.

Alright, time for Charlie and I to go out and play.  Have a great Monday everyone!

Thursday, April 10

April Miles

Thursday April 3 - none
Friday - none
Saturday - 2.5 elliptical
Sunday - 31 Day Shred
Monday - Supreme 90 Total body {it's like the knock-off p90x} / abs
Tuesday - Supreme 90 Inferno
Wednesday - Kickboxing / arms / abs

Weekly Total - 2.5 miles
April Total Miles - 2.5
April workout total - 5

As you can tell, the stomach flu really took a lot out of me this month.  So I'm just glad to be starting to get back into it again!  I would have loved to have gone running or to the gym more, but it was just tough this week with Skip's schedule.  At least I was able to get something done when the girls went to bed!

How has your April started off?  As temps are warming, hopefully I can get in some outdoor runs soon!

Alright, off to make FastPass+ selections for our Disney trip..have a great day!!

Adventures of Manda and Mr Howie

Tuesday, April 8

Kickin' It Old School

Okay, so a few months ago, the ever fabulous Bri nominated me for a Liebster Award!  I remember when these used to be really popular in blogging and loved doing them.  And with all the tearing down of each other I've seen people do's nice to see some supportive women out there:) 

Since it's been awhile, here are the rules:
1. Link back to the blogger(s) that nominated you
2. Answer the 11 questions requested by the nominator.
3. You cannot nominate the person who nominated you.
4. You must let the bloggers know they were nominated.

Here are the questions Bri gave me!
1. If your home caught fire and your family & pets were safe - what 3 items would you save, and why? My external hard drive because it has all our pictures and videos loaded on there.  My cell phone.  I'd want to call fire dept with something, and it would take me forever to get back all those contacts!  My "war letters" from Skip and all the military boys I know.  Those could never be replaced.

2. Which goals do you hope to accomplish in 2014? I wrote out all my resolutions for the year back in January.  Most of them are pretty standard, eat better, workout more, save money, etc.  But what I hope most of all is just to have a happy year with my little family!

3. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you and why? Florida.  My body was made for the warm weather!  I love the idea of a place that you really don't have a reason to own a winter coat.  Plus, let's be honest, with all the retirees from this area moving down there, Florida is becoming a warm I'd fit right in!

4. How old would you be if you didn't know your age? 23

5. What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you? Use the weights more at the gym.  I seriously get so paranoid that someone is silently making fun of me or thinks I'm not doing it right.  So I rarely do them at all.  

6. Why do superheroes wear underwear OUTSIDE their clothes?? My 6yo really wants to know. Haha, no idea, but I'll make sure to ask Dean Cain if I ever meet him;-)

7. What was the best thing BEFORE sliced bread? French bread!  The far superior bread in my opinion.  There was no need for it to be sliced as eating the whole thing is totally acceptable!

8. If you could turn into an animal, which would it be and why? A sea otter.  They just seem to have a lot of fun!

9. Name 3 songs that you swear were written for you? "This is How You Remind Me" by Nickelback
"I'll Stand by You" by the Pretenders "Tangled Up in You" by Staind

10. What are you waiting for? Currently? My husband to finish making some coffee and Michaels to open so I can go shopping!

11. What book would you recommend? "A Farewell to Arms" by Ernest Hemingway

My Nominations: Make sure to head over and check out all these fabulous ladies!!

Here are the questions for you to answer! 
1. What is your favorite dinner to make?
2. What make-up item would you never leave the house without?
3. Are you currently reading any books?  If so which one?
4. Do you have any summer vacations plans?  Where to?
5. What is your favorite movie of all time?
6. What is your favorite series to binge watch on Netflix?
7. What do you think is the worst current fashion trend?
8. How many kids do you want to have?
9. If you had a whole free day all to yourself, how would you spend it?
10. Are you a night owl or morning bird? {is morning bird a thing? I think I just made that up}
11. What is your absolute favorite dessert?

Have a great Tuesday!  And remember to check out some of the most delicious cheese ever!

Monday, April 7

Letting Go

When your children are babies, your primary job as parents is to keep them happy, healthy, and safe.

As they start to grow, you need to begin teaching them to walk, talk, feed themselves.

Once they have mastered those skills, it is time to delve a little deeper into their education.  Letters, numbers, colors, shapes.  We are our children's first teachers.

Before you know it though, there comes a new stage in your relationship with your child.  One that comes much much sooner than expected.  The one of "letting go".

Try as we might, we cannot keep our children in the protective bubble of our arms and homes forever.  They need to learn to grow their wings and assert their independence a little.  They need to test the waters and try some things on their own.

Let me tell you.  This stage is one of the more scary ones I have experienced so far as a mom.  It goes against all my instincts to let Emmy start to venture off on her own.  Now obviously we're not talking about walking to the store by herself, but these beginning moments of freedom are still very nerve wracking.

Sunday was a big day of independence for Emmy.  In the morning, she and I headed off to church.  One of the masses is known as "the children's mass" and so we made sure to go to that one.  {Quick side-note for anyone not Catholic.  We don't have any day care centers or Sunday school classes during our masses.  If you have children, you just have to bring them with you into the service.  Most churches do have a children's mass where the children are called up to the alter before the readings, and they head downstairs to the basement or crying room for a portion of the mass to listen to the readings at their own level.}  Skip has taken Emmy to this mass a few times before.  He has pretty much always gone with her into the room with the kids to keep an eye on her though.  But after a lot of discussion from him and I, we decided that this week I would let her go all by herself.

When the time came for the children to head up, Emmy got up and walked right up to the alter with such purpose.  She was one of the smaller kids heading up there, but she definitely made up in confidence what she lacked in height.  Without even a glance back in my direction she filed right out of the church and into the little crying room area in the back with the rest of the kids and the teacher.  I then spent the next 20 minutes panicking that something was going to happen to her in there.  I did get up once to peak in, but other than that she was on her own.  She was super happy when she came out, and very proud of herself.

Later that afternoon, she was able to assert a little more independence when we were at the park.  Skip was working, and I brought the girls there to meet up with my baby sis and her husband.  After spending some time with them and their puppies, the girls and I headed to the playground area.  I've attempted to take the girls to the park by myself before, but it normally ends in near-disaster.  Charlie is still at the tough age where she simply takes off running, and throws tantrums when she doesn't get her way.  So our past solo park trips normally end with Emmy not getting to do anything she wants to, and me being kicked in the shins by a screaming toddler.

This time I was comfident it would be different.  I prepped Emmy when we got there.  I told her most of my attention would have to be focused on Charlie, and she would be on her own a bit.  I gave her boundaries of where she could go, and reminded her to always be able to see me.  {now before I sound too crazy and overbearing.  We live in one of the most densely populated areas in the country.  Everywhere you go, there are tons of people and tons of cars.  There's also been a string of attempted lurings, and so everyone is a little more on edge.  Nice, country, don't lock our doors living is definitely not what happens around here}

Well you know what, Emmy {and I} did great!  While I was chasing Charlie around, Emmy was happily getting to do her own thing.  It's not a huge park, so she was never really that far from me.  But she was so happy and proud to be off playing a bit on her own.

As I typed out this post, I realize how silly these little pieces of independence are.  But for me, for Emmy, they were the first step in her starting to spread her wings.  There is that famous quote about when you have children, you are letting your heart go walking around outside your body.  Well, as important as it is, it is hard to have that heart begin to travel a touch farther away every day.



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