Thursday, August 28, 2014

IPHONE LATELY 8.29.14

Well hello there!
Now that I'm starting to get into the swing of things here on the ole blog again, I am also trying to get back into the routine of posting certain things on certain days like I used to.
So without further ado, here are a few photos from our last two weeks. There aren't a ton. We've been pretty busy just getting into a routine over here in the Arizona heat.
Caderyn's school had an open house the Sunday before school started. We got to go in and meet his teacher and find his desk and look all over his classroom.  

 With all of the rain and monsoons Arizona has gotten lately, we've had lots of time to sit in front of the window and watch the lightning and the rain. The boys think it is awesome.
 
Celebrating the first week of school being over and done with a trip to In N Out.

Miss Fluffy la Roux was in biiiiiig trouble this weekend. She ended up at the vet after getting into the bathroom garbage and eating something disgusting that could also potentially kill her. Turns out she's fine. My bank account, however, is still trying to recover.
She's going to get her own post here soon.
 
And swimming. Swimming, swimming, swimming, swimming! That's all Caderyn wants to do. He gets home from school, takes his uniform off, and will usually jump in with just his undies on.   



Caderyn got a compass in the mail from Mema and Papa. He's been exploring the different areas of the house with it. And, see what I mean? Undies.

Again, he comes home from school and even on days he doesn't go swimming this is what he does.

I went to an open house at Caderyn's school this past week. They had lots of special projects for us to see, but Caderyn was most excited about this one.
It says: My name begins with the letter C. I like to swim at Mimi and Papa's. Who am I?
 
And then I had to guess that based on the fact that my son calls my mom Mimi and that all he wants to do from sun up to sun down is swim that this card and hand was his. So you look inside it and the kids had drawn a picture of themselves. Caderyn gave himself an orange hue that reminded me of a Sesame Street character. And then on the fingers they had to list five things they liked/that made them special. Caderyn listed: 1. Going to the park 2. Play soccer 3. Cookies 4. Peter Piper Pizza
 5. Play Minecraft.
 
Have a great Labor Day Weekend!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

KINDERGARTEN




 
One morning last week I woke up and Caderyn was in Kindergarten.
How did that happen so quickly?
It feels like just yesterday he was flipping around in my belly with those big feet of his making it hard for me to breathe. Other days with Caderyn feel like the day of the eternal sixteen-year-old with lots of attitude and lessons to be learned.
But this particular day, Caderyn was just a Kindergartener.
My Kindergartener.
It made me happy. It made me sad.
He had a new backpack full of new supplies. He had on a smart looking uniform and he was a little bundle of excitement while we ate breakfast and talked about school. His nerves started to creep in once we got to school, but he came home with the biggest smile on his face and lots to share about his day.
He is (so far) excited each and every day to get up and go to school. He likes learning and coloring and recess and lunch. He likes going to the same school where his Mimi works and that he gets to see her each day. He likes that I work there and he gets to see me too.
There is the part of me that isn't ready for Caderyn to grow up so soon, to let him go and continue to grow. There's always that part of me that wants him to stay little and snuggling on my lap while we read a book. But, that won't happen. Caderyn is too smart for that and he needs to learn. He needs to laugh and play with kids his own age, he needs to learn how to be a good friend, and he needs to make mistakes and figure out how to fix them on his own.
These kids of ours, they grow up before we're truly ready. But we have to be ready to let them go, to grow and to learn.
Here is a quick little interview I did with my Kindergartener, to give you a little insight into his mind.

Me: Caderyn, how old are you?
Caderyn: Five. I like your toenails because they match. Someday can I get mine painted? I just tooted. Excuse me.
Me: Thank you for excusing yourself. No toenail polish for you. Guys don't usually get their nails painted.
Caderyn: Oh yeah! Okay.
Me: What do you want to be when you grow up?
Caderyn: A worker and a plumber.
Me: Why? What do you like about them?
Caderyn: Because they can undo the toilet so its not clogged anymore.
Me: Caderyn, what is your favorite food?
Caderyn: Cookies
Me: What is your favorite dinner?
Caderyn: Quesedillas.
Me: What is your favorite color?
Caderyn: Red
Me: What is your favorite book?
Caderyn: Anything with Spiderman.
Me: What is your favorite movie?
Caderyn: Anything with Batman.
Me: What do you want to learn in school this year?
Caderyn: How to be a plumber.
Me: I don't think they will teach you that in this school.
Caderyn: Oh. I want to learn how to tie my shoes.

And there you have it ladies and gents. My child.

And then of course there's Lucy.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

MONTANA TO ARIZONA

Before I left Montana, I started to write this super sentimental post about my home state. It was glorious, but then the computer I was working on went kaput and everything was lost.
Now, having lived in Phoenix for all of two weeks, I've had some good time to reflect on not only what we've left behind, but also what we have ahead of us.
I adore Montana. Everything there, in my opinion, is just better. People are nicer. The weather is nicer (even when it is snowing and raining). The outdoor space to play in is amazing. The beer is above and beyond fantastic. Everything just slows down a little bit and it feels wonderful.
I miss Montana. Every time I'm away from Montana I miss it. When I lived in Arizona while going to high school I couldn't wait for that next year that brought me closer and closer to my college goals of going to the University of Montana.
Once I got back there, I never wanted to leave. Up til now I've managed to live and enjoy my home state for the last eleven years. Now that I am away, I miss it terribly. I miss the calm and lazy days. I miss being only a short drive away from my grandparents, aunts/uncles, and friends. I miss the cooler temperatures. I miss how easy everything was to drive to. I miss the big blue sky. I miss how the air just smells cleaner in Montana. I miss the smaller crowds.
I think, no matter where I am in life, if I am away from Montana, I will always miss it.
Montana is the foundation that breathed life into me and made me who I am.
No matter where I am, I have made a vow to always return.
And I will.
It may take a few years, but we will be back one day for good.
For now though, we have adventures to embark upon.

And you know, I used to hate Arizona. I always liked coming back to visit and see my parents, but I always swore up and down I would never live here. It is too hot for me.
Well...
Now that I'm living here again, I don't mind it.
It is bigger and more crowded. Traffic is terrible and I'm usually stressed after a ten minute drive.
People don't engage with you as easily and they aren't as kind in random situations.

But there are stores. So many stores to choose from! So many food choices and shopping choices and basically all kinds of choices. I've recently discovered a love for Trader Joe's and Sprouts. I've been eyeballing that Nordstrom Rack just two miles down the road (don't worry Jeff, I'm saving my money).
And there are multiple options to keep your children engaged. We have zoos and museums and an abundance of fantastic parks. We have a swimming pool and a gated fence so I don't have to worry too much about my kids playing in the back yard (our last house wasn't 100 percent fenced in). The weather is definitely hot, but there is a certain beauty about it. Arizona does have some amazing sunsets.
Caderyn gets to go to a fantastic school where we've been welcomed with open arms and met some wonderful people.
I get to work and spend time with my children throughout the week which is an amazing blessing.
I get the chance to branch out and meet new people and reconnect with friends who still live here.
And, the most important thing of all, I get to spend a year with my parents.
It still doesn't feel real, it still just feels like a vacation. I get to sleep in (not all the time), and go to the gym, and I have two extra sets of hands to help me with my boys.
It. Is. Wonderful.
So, as hard as moving away from Montana was, I feel like we made the right decision.
We will make this year fun and I look forward to the memories to come.

Here is a poem someone sent me on my last full day of work that I thought accurately summed up how I felt about leaving work, moving, and starting a new life chapter.

The Guest House
 
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
-- Jelaluddin Rumi,
    translation by Coleman Barks

Monday, August 25, 2014

CADERYN SAYS


Friday night we were having a family movie night on the couch watching "Scooby Doo: Where's My Mummy?"
Very educational that one, folks.
A scene comes on where Cleopatra shows herself to the people in her tomb and threatens them with a curse. Then she does this evil and drawn out laugh.

Caderyn: Hey! Mommy! Her laugh sounds just like you!
My Dad: Bwahahahaha
Me: What?

I can do a pretty amazing evil villain laugh (if I may say so myself), and apparently Caderyn thought they were one and the same.
Great.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

IPHONE LATELY: THE END OF SUMMER

Okay, here we go. There is probably only one more of these guys and then we are caught up from the summer and I can move on to actually write about deep and important things, like the gym I joined and how I find gym characters so interesting or why I really only like blueberry yogurt. Fascinating stuff, right?
 
So moving day arrived. We left Missoula on Friday morning, August 8th in the early morning and drove to Helena where we loaded up the U-Haul with all the stuff we were taking to Arizona. Maybe an hour later we were on the road. The kids were GREAT the entire trip. I'm still in a little bit of shock over how good they were. We hardly had any issues and we made sure to only drive as long as 8 hours--that was our longest day. The first day we drive to Idaho Falls and stayed the night, then we stayed in Cedar City and made it to Arizona on the third day.
Hotel room selfies.  
Beer and pizza after a long day of driving.  
 
This face, this stinking face was so adorably cute. He sat in the back seat of our car like a champ and watched movies the entire trip.
 
We got to Arizona around 5:30 p.m. on Sunday and immediately began unpacking everything...and it was 105 degrees, so that was great!
Lucy was refusing to walk outside and would whine a lot, obviously she is a bit of a drama queen. So I bought her some booties to see if that would help her with the heat...they didn't. We took them back. Basically all she would do is lay on the ground until we took them off, really, a pretty standard move for her.
 
With warmer weather than we were usually used to, I tried to find places I could take the boys where they could play and we would still be comfortable. We ended up at the mall by my house a lot. 
This is Caderyn checking out some ladies.

I got my new/old room set up and decided I have an earring fetish.
Well, I mean, who doesn't?
 
We also swam...a lot. We swam in the morning, we swam and night. We swam in our undies. We swam in our birthday suits (the little boys of course). And we're still swimming.
 
 
We've had some great rain storms, electric storms, and monsoons.
 
We discovered the library by our house. I will say this, only in awkward public kid settings do I really truly realize just how good my kids are. Parents who go places and just let their kids be turds need to rethink their strategy. The library was quite an eye opener. I had a girl, an older girl, try to pick a fight with Gabriel because she wanted a train he was holding. It was like a 20-minute ordeal and then I discovered her mom was sitting right next to me reading all the while I'd been redirecting her child. I might have glared. Or there was the little boy who stole all 20 of the trains from the train table, hid them, and then was biting kids who tried to get to them. Yeah. So once we found ourselves a nice corner of the library that was a little more calm, I sat back and realized just how good my kids actually are.
They play together nicely (most of the time). They share. They are thoughtful (again, all of these are most of the time). This instance made me sit back a little and think "Maybe I'm doing something right."
Let's hope.
 
After our interesting trip to the library, we met Papa for lunch at Five Guys and Caderyn tried their spicy Cajun fries. Here's what happened.
Hah!
 
Later that evening we went to the magical Target so Caderyn could pick out his school supplies. Oofta. That was an ordeal and a big hit on the pocketbook.
 
The next day I had to go to a meeting for the new job I was starting. I got hired on at the school my mom teaches at and where Caderyn is going as a Kindergarten Aide.
I wasn't too sure about it, I mean, I've been in a demanding higher education customer service position for the last seven years so I was a little wary about working with five-year-olds.
But so far, I LOVE IT.
Yesterday one of the little boys asked me if I'd been electrocuted because my hair was so curly.
 
And then there was more swimming.
 


More mall time
 
And Lucy was lazy
So now...I think we are only a week behind!
Everyone's caught up with our summer!
Deployment, fun nights, family time, packing, cabin, more packing, Seattle trip, moving, hating moving, Missoula, Great Falls, Montana to Arizona, swimming and etc.