Friday, January 27, 2012

Playing Pretend: The Spaceship Version

The other day, I posted this as my Facebook status:
Captain's log:
Star Date: January 25th 2012
Today the Federation Star Ship Sorrento encountered heavy solar winds on our way to Planet Abue Rosi. First Mate Lucas found himself fighting off enemy star ships. Communications Officer Gracie helped the captain and the first mate navigate the solar system. We arrived safely. Our mission will continue this evening. Captain out.

That morning, I packed the kiddos into the car and decided to play with them.  I did a countdown: 5-4-3-2-1 Blastoff! We played the entire way to Abue Rosi's pretending we were shooting mean aliens, flying quickly around dangerous space ships, avoiding horrible solar winds. We giggled and laughed and had a great time.

Sometimes, the best times are when your Mommy can be silly with you.

Monday, January 23, 2012


For as long as I can remember, Lukie has stored all of his very special toys under his pillow.  It started with a car or two and has progressed to a serious pile.  What gets to hide under his pillow varies from night to night.  Sometimes, it is cars.  Occasionally his Bakugans. Almost always: his ninja sword.

Last night, he woke up three times crying.  Usually, this is a sign that he is sick, but after I made him comfortable for the 4th time, I decided to check under his pillow.  This is what I found:

1 T-Rex
6 cars
2 bouncy balls
3 quarters
Optimus Prime - small size
Bumble Bee - small size
Ninja sword - full size

Lukie and I need to have a conversation about the lumps under his pillow.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A milestone

Do you know what this is?

It is the first time Gracie and Lucas wrote their names in the right order!  We usually have letters all over the page, but this time, they went in the right order.  I'm so excited!  I want to have them write their names so that I can preserve them for all time.

Baby Alyssa, Nino Joe and Tia Marci's daughter, is the recipient of this piece of history. Guard it well, little Alyssa!

So beyond proud!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Who needs a playground?

There are two playgrounds at this park. Gracie and Lukie would rather play on the sidewalk. This is why I dream of a real house in a real neighborhood for us.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Angry toe

Only Angry Birds can take care of the Angry Toe.

The reason I married Daddy

And today in the car:

"Mommy, did you marry my daddy?"
"Yes, Gracie."
"Because you loved him?"
"Yep, because I love him."
"And because of his mishmash?"
"Yes, and because of his mustache."

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Sometimes, 4 year olds have interesting conversations

Stick with this.  It's fascinating.

Last night, when I picked Gracie and Lukie up from Abue Rosi's house, the following conversation occurred from the backseat of my car.

Lucas: "Mommy, where does lava come from?"

Me: "Volcanoes."

Lucas: "Where are the volcanoes?"

Me: "Oh, lots of places.  There are some in Hawaii.  You can walk right next to them."

Lucas: "Mommy, where does lava come from?"

Me: "Hmmm.  That's an in-TER-esting question. It comes from underneath the ground.  It comes up through the volcanoes to the land."

Lucas: "But why does it come up?"

Me: "Well, it comes up to make new ground for us to live on and grow things."

Lucas: "To grow things and live on the lava?"

Me: "Yes, but we don't live on the lava when it is hot.  We can live on the land after it gets cooler and the lava moves away."

Gracie: "Mommy, I don't want to live on lava.  I don't want to be like that man."

Me: "What man?"

Gracie: "Remember, Lukie?  That man who fell in the lava?  And it burned his legs?"

Lucas: "Oh, yeah!  Remember he fell in the lava and it burned his legs and the mean man came and took him and turned him into a robot?"

Me: "Wait, what?"

Gracie: "The man who fought the other man and then he fell in the lava and then a man came with a space ship and took him to a place where they turned him into a robot.  Remember, Mommy? He was a mean man! And then, remember the other man fought with him and the mean guy in the black with the scary face shooted lightening at the other man and the robot man picked him up and threw him over the side like this? Whoosh!"

Me: "What are you nuts talking about?"

Lucas: "Remember, Mommy? The robot guy.  What's his name? He's scary and tall and the other man takes off his mask and he's not mean any more?"

Me: "Are you talking about Darth Vader?"

Lucas: "Yeah!  That's it, Mommy!  Remember Darth Vader fell in the lava and it burned his legs and the mean man who shoots lightening out of his hands finds him and turns him into a robot? I don't want to fall in the lava and have to be a robot."

Me: "Honey, you aren't going to fall in the lava.  First of all, I wouldn't let you get that close. Second of all, Darth Vader is in a movie.  It's Star Wars. Remember, Luke Skywalker? Movies are pretend.  Remember?"

Gracie: "So, we won't fall in the lava and get burned and have to have robot legs?"

Me: "No, Gracie, you won't."

Lucas: "Mommy, I don't want to go to Hawaii."

Me: "We aren't going to Hawaii.  Why don't you want to go to Hawaii?"

Lucas: "There's lava there and I don't want it to burn my legs."

Me: "Oh, Good Gravy. Lukie, the lava is not going to burn your legs and we aren't going to Hawaii, we are going to Mexico and where we are going in Mexico does not have any volcanoes and it doesn't have any lava. So you are safe."

Gracie: "Did you hear that, Lukie?  There aren't any volcanoes in Mexico and you won't burn your legs!  See, you don't have to worry!"

Lucas: "I don't want to be a robot like Darth Vader, Mommy."

Me: (sigh) "You won't, Lukie.  Darth Vader is just pretend."

Lucas: "Mommy?"

Me: "Yes, Lukie?"

Lucas: "Can Daddy beat up Darth Vader with his robot leg?"

Me: "Absolutely, honey.  Daddy can totally beat up Darth Vader."

Lucas: "Good. Daddy can beat up Darth Vader and I won't fall in the lava."

Me: "That's right."

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Things heard around our house

Lukie: "One, two, three, four, five, six, seben, eight..."
Me: "What are you doing, Lukie?"
Lukie: "I'm counting my dollars."
Me: "You mean your nickels?"
Lukie: "No, these are dollars. I am counting my money to see if I have enough to buy a Toyota."
Me (struggling to hold back a laugh): "A Toyota?"
Lukie: "Yes, I need to have a car for when I'm big. They cost $20 hunn-red dollars. I almost have enough money."

Thursday, January 5, 2012

About Daddy

The past year has been truly difficult for Daddy.  In September 2010, he had his kidney transplant and the surgery was successful.  Unfortunately, there were all kinds of complications that happened afterward: blood clots, digestive system issues, infections.  It felt like he was in the hospital for most of 2011.  He would come home for a few weeks and be back in soon afterward.

When I look back on the year, it is not through my eyes as his wife.  Instead, I can only see the year as Gracie and Lucas did.  The older they become, the bigger their world is.  When they were a year old and Daddy was in the hospital, they had me, Abue Rosi, and Abue Juve every day to distract them and fill their days with happiness.  When they turned two, they missed him and asked about him, but they were easily distracted. At 3, they asked so many questions about Daddy.  What was he doing? When was he coming home? Why was the doctor making him stay at the hospital? They had so many questions and it was increasingly difficult to answer them.  How do  you tell a 3 year old that their Daddy has an illness that is not going to go away and has the potential to get so much worse?

I think the last 5 months have been the hardest.  This summer, Ed was out of the hospital for about 9 weeks.  We were together every day and it was really fantastic. Then, in August, Ed went in to have a filter removed from his leg.  During the procedure, the camera that the doctor was using to locate the filter punctured his vein and caused him to bleed internally.  I was there when the doctor came in to talk with him. Ed almost died. 

It is unbelievably hard to write that statement.  We almost lost him. I held Gracie and Lucas tightly for the next few days, uncertain what life held for us. They had so many questions this time, but this time, they were scared.  They had just spent weeks with their Daddy and their love for him was/is huge.  There were tears and worry that I would go away too.  Daddy was in the hospital for months this time and since he's come home, he hasn't been the same.  He's had more complications and his frustration at not being able to be an active father increases every day.

Three days ago, Daddy came home after having been in the hospital for a week and a half.  Tonight, he returned to the hospital.  Each time, it is harder for Gracie and Lucas.  Each time, I see them become more anxious and afraid.  I wish I had answers for them and that I could reassure them that Daddy will be well soon.  The truth is, I have no idea what is next.  No idea whether he will be well tomorrow or at all. I'm scared and I have no answers.  All I can do is hug them close and make sure they feel as safe as possible.

On Facebook today, someone posted a quote that stuck with me and I'm going to hold it close:

You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.

I hope Daddy knows how strong he can be.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

This Year's Motto: Life Moves Pretty Fast...

Ferris Bueller said: "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

The past two days, this quote has been in my head and when I logged in to our blog today, I realized that I haven't been stopping to look at life at all this year.  There is so much that I should have recorded and I haven't.  My memory is bad and I hate that there are things that happened this year and I won't be able to share with Gracie and Lucas.

2011 was not a kind year.  I feel like the past 4 years could be designated that way, but when I stop and reconsider it, I realize that I have something special that I did not have 4 years ago: Gracie and Lucas. Despite all of the frustration, tears, and frustration of the past year, the joys of having Gracie and Lukie here with me have made everything so much better.

2012 has a lot of things to look forward to: a family vacation, my 40th birthday, and Gracie and Lukie's 5th birthday. There is so much more. The plan is to come back and post more frequently, even if it is something short. We have so much going on and I don't want to forget a single thing!

Happy 10th Birthday!

There's nothing better than bringing cupcakes and having free dress on your 10th birthday! These two were so excited that they kept r...