Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I am off to be a daughter instead of a mom

Later today, I will be flying out to Phoenix to visit my parents. Tomorrow my mom and I set off for a few days of painting, sleeping, hiking, wining(not really a verb but you get the idea) without my kids or my husband. I have been looking forward to the time away to catch up on sleep to relax. I really am looking forward to painting and just exploring some me time and some me and my mom time. I am hoping to come back in a zen state where my children will pick up on my vibe and suddenly become easygoing, laid back kids. Who wants to take bets? lol

I am sure they will have a grand time without me. My mil is here to help out and they are in day school camp this week. I am so thankful that my mil was able to come and help and I am sure this is a relief to my husband.

Last night, Krismon and Max went to toys r us and got Maggie a water table. She is our water baby. She loves to wash her hands, take baths, brush teeth so we are hoping that this is going to give her some good constructive playtime with water. And hopefully keep her a little cooler while she plays outside.

Monday, July 28, 2008

sophisticated and then there is me

I doubt I would win the sophisticated of the year award. I show heart and heck I love to dress up but I feel like a pretender to the throne when I am at a shindig. I think it comes from being home so often with munchkins whose idea of a conversation is to detail what they ate at the table and what they did in the bathroom. Well okay so Max is past that point and we can have some interesting conversations but it is not the same as if I had continued to work and socialize more.

I have a feeling though that some of it stems from being the youngest in the family and wanting to always be more mature so that my sisters would like and play with me. Okay, I know that sounds pretty darn silly but I am sure there is a hint of truth in that.

Last night was the company party at Rain at the Palms. It was fun to get dressed up and look nice. And this was the first time that we got a room so that we could stay out and wake up when we wanted to vs when our kids decide to wake us up. I enjoyed seeing the people I know but there were a heck of a lot of people I don't know and I am sure because of the sheer volume of people moving around that I missed seeing some of the people I do know as well.

So it is cool to see these clubs in Vegas that I wouldn't pay to go to but I am really turning into an old fart when I would rather be able to talk to people than have my eardrums blown out by the sound of the music. Thank goodness they opened the pool area up for the party so that we could sit in the cabanas and talk a little easier. The music was still loud but not ear splitting. Even given that we had a room by 11:30pm, I was pretty well petered out. I think we were both running on almost empty after having had little to no sleep the night before.

I will tell you all that the rooms at palms place are NICE! We really enjoyed staying and I wish we could have stayed more than 1 night there. It was a great way to get some much needed rest and a joy to wake up on our own.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

We are no longer virgins!

Did I stump you? I mean how could I have kids then. Nope, my name is not Mary. But we did go camping for the first time as a family last night up at mt. Charleston. Thank goodness we went with 5 or more other families. The kids had the best time but... of course, there has to be a but. Maggie caught a cold. Her nose was running all sorts of green stuff and she has a tooth coming out. The start of her two year molars. And on top of that was the excitement of something new so she peed through so many pairs of undies and pants, argh.

She was a regular irregular peer yesterday. I think she became the 'ah there she goes again' girl. We even washed out some of her clothes and bbqed them so that if she needed more today, we would have them. Of course, this morning, she played and played in the water until she was thoroughly soaked so there is no knowing if she was just wet with water or...

She was one of the first banished to her tent for sleep. She cried and cried until Krismon went in and laid with her. And then she did not want to be under blankets, she ended up in the sleeping bag with me in the middle of the night with the coldest feet I have ever felt. Can you see the bags under my eyes? And then as soon as the sun came up around 5:30am, they were both up. We were able to kind of keep them quiet until we saw some of our friends emerge. It then became a free for all for my kids to wake just about everyone up. I tried to let the others sleep, really I did. But thank goodness they woke up since our car could not power our percolator. At least, their voices are still sweet and nice as they went around the camp visiting the others.

The food from camping was great. The big plus were the smores last night and the kids getting to roast marshmallows. I don't know who was more excited me or them. It was fun and we survived so hopefully this will be a start.

Now we just have to see if anyone else will want to camp with us..... Any takers?

Friday, July 25, 2008

My Turn

I am looking at my dog, Bubba, at the moment laying on his back paws in the air secure in his doghood. The kids are watching thomas because I couldn't stand the whines and screams any longer. I know, it is my bad momma moment relying on the tv to keep my kids in line. They seem to act so well when the tv is on. Makes you wonder if maybe big brother hasn't already started delivering something through the tv to get our kids to sit in such a stupor.

So this seemed to be my day of lavish self care. I got my eyebrows waxed and dyed. I got my toesys done. They are really red. I thought about work but didn't accomplish much more than a half hearted research on the internet. In stead, shhh don't tell my husband, I got sucked into a book and read it. On top of that, I noshed my way through the day. I know slap the handcuffs on now for wasting my day! It felt pretty glorious given the past week of recent nighttime visits from little Maggie. She is wearing us both down.

Man both kids look super tired. I swear Max is ready to pass out where he is sitting. No more time to sit down and blog. I got to get the dinner show on the road.

It's our poster

Max wants to write a guest blog so he has named this post and I shall be transcribing his words....

I love my mom. I love her so much that I love her to all the planets and back.

My day, I had a fun day that I had a really fun day. My class was so busy. My class had fun. I learned how to play nicely. I enjoyed my lunch so much. I ate everything.

Maggie didn't cry at all.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Schedules, Chores, Rewards, Oh MY!

So do you ever feel overwhelmed by everything that you need to get done each day? Well, I figured out the answer. KIDS!

It started at an early age. It was all about getting Max to pick up his toys. Yes, we used the silly Barney song that is wayyyyy tooo catchyyyy. You don't even have to have watched the show to know the song it seems. Maggie is slowly learning to put away toys but is not as eager as Max. I believe this is because she bats her eyes and he puts them away. HA. No she just pretends like she doesn't understand english anymore and runs into the other room, at which point, Max kind of looks around and says, 'alright, I will put away the toys.' The only way she understands putting away toys or doing other unpleasant to her things is through manipulation. Okay I know that sounds bad but we are trying to get her to understand that Casa Ongbongan isn't a free ride. She has to contribute to receive. lol.

For Max, life has progressed to him having daily chores. I love these chores because they involve the care of our dog Bubba. Max is the one to feed him and let him in and out of the house. Maggie wants to take on the feeding chore and tries to get her hands in his food any chance she can so that Bubba will love her more! Max gets the newspaper in the morning and yes I have had to tell him before that wearing clothes is important when he goes to the front of our house. He likes to make me nervous and stay outside to watch the ants climbing in and out of our garbage can. (hmm, maybe I should be calling the pest control guy!) He empties what he can in the dishwasher. I know I am such a mean mama, but I will turn him into someone's good husband! I don't think my mom started us quite this early but heck the sooner they learn, the less I will have to do! And you know, they say it is good to give kids ownership so they can feel proud of what they accomplish.

Don't get me wrong, I believe they should play to and have fun but there has to be some balance so they can learn responsibility and respect.

For Max's accomplishments, he gets to choose to watch tv and choose to play on the computer or spend one on one time with one of his parents. Maggie hasn't quite gotten the whole rewards thing but we will work on that.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Wetlands Park

Who knew that in the middle to end of July that we would actually be able to go to a park and not die of the heat?! And can you believe this park exists in Las Vegas?

Max, full of suggestions boy, asked if we could go on Sunday morning. So even though it took a bit, we got out the door early and over to the park.

They have been doing construction in the park so this past spring you could not do their whole circular cemented route. That has been completed and has this cool new bridge that I am sure will cross to a whole other part of the park once that gets completed.

I didn't think we would get to see any wildlife out there but Krismon captured a rabbit and a crane on our camera. I was happy to get out with the kids until the flat tire came along from the thorn! argh.

It was at the bridge that we noticed said thorn protruding from the wheel. After which point, Krismon became the driver. (side note- We even did a potty stop for Maggie and she went. It amazes me and I know it does all of you that she has started using public places.)

Saturday, July 19, 2008

So I just live in the show

but I am the writer too so I guess I can take time to not only write about the kids but also about myself. My world for the last 4 or more years has revolved around the kids, caring for them, entertaining them, teaching them, doing fun stuff with them and socializing them in a playgroup. I have loved this and enjoyed the time spent with them and the friends that I have made through playgroup as well as in the classes that I have had the kids and I take.

Now I am stepping outside my comfort zone. Over the past year or so, I have taken a coaching course through Coach U. The program has taught me a lot and now I need to use what I have learned. Heck, I was supposed to be using it the entire time I was in classes but intimidated myself out of really pushing myself into getting clients paid or pro bono. It is tough after such an extended period of time away from the paid work force to get out there and not only network but self promote.

Krismon is completely behind me on this venture. Heck, he would love it if I became a self made millionaire and he could stay home with the kids! He is a better cook and we could then hire someone to clean the house. Am I getting ahead of myself? It is great to have someone so close really believe in you and push you to be your best. I think that is something he has always done and I have done that for him.

I do desire to coach others and I know that I can do a good job of it, once I get over myself and just get out there. So if you know anyone who needs coaching, professional, personal, parent, I am the woman for you or them... Just send them to my professional site. www.kiss-coaching.com
It doesn't look too pretty yet but I am working on it, just like I am trying to wrap my head around this blog and all the nifty things I can do with it, I am trying to figure out all the right things I can add to the site. Heck if you have any ideas send them my way, I am not one to mind some constructive criticism or help.

See I really am trying to do the self promotion...

Friday, July 18, 2008

My very first blog award

Thanks Joanna for nominating me for this award. I appreciate it and thank you for generally commenting on my blog.

So, here are the rules for the award...

1. Put the logo on your blog.

2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.


Thursday, July 17, 2008

Ramblings on living a greener life

I was just talking today to a friend about wanting to make a better impact on my kids lives by reducing our footprint. I have watched the green channel and the show that lets families see what impact they are making on the world with their ways. I know that ours may not be quite so bad but I do know that there is so much more that I could be doing that I just haven't done yet.

So even though I try to recycle plastic that isn't listed as acceptable plastic to be recycled in the hopes that they will take the hint. Whoever they is... I know that I play a role. I need to figure out ways not to have so much plastic to begin with so that I am not having to worry about the recycling. I know when it comes to groceries that I need to find a way to buy produce without having to get so many plastic bags. And I am not even sure what to do about the costco size apple containers and so on. I start to think and I get a little overwhelmed if you haven't already guessed! lol.

I read a marketwatch piece on a family that was going to try and not buy stuff new for an entire year. I thought, wow, what a great idea. Okay so they did buy new undies and shoes but they tried to get everything else used. I thought maybe this was something I could do. I like the idea of shopping at goodwill and buffalo exchange and going to garage sales. I would love not to buy the kids toys and have to unwind and rip and cut and untape to get a tiny toy baby out. I get lured in by those devil shops, target and walmart and costco. I don't go out of my way to go to goodwill and shop for things there. Insert a picture of sledgehammer hitting me over the head to try and get across to me that I can go to goodwill and used bookstores. I slipped that one in since I love. love, love to read! I finally started going back to the library recently...

I wish weather wise that it was easier to get around without a car here. And I know it is for much of the year, I guess I have got to realize that a good walk to the market is in store for us once summer is truly over. We can get our exercise as well as mexican calbi. Okay now did that make any sense at all?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Wii fit competition is ON!

I think Max is going to end up kicking all our butts. He loves the running though when I put on the ten minute run by the last couple of minutes he was done. By their calculations he had done over 2 miles! It is all in the hips and he loves to move them. He is definitely not a slow and steady wins the race kind of kid. He is forever trying to outrun the guide.

Yoga and strength training in combo is fun and a cool way to get the work out in. We haven't had Max doing any of the strength stuff really but he is pretty gungho to do the the yoga poses. He seems to really like the tree pose and the half moon. I think we all pretty much suck at the balance games. Those suckers are hard. My bubble pops right before the end each time and I have yet to make it down the ski run and go between the arrows of even half I think. The snow boarding one is even harder. I guess hopefully over time I will become better coordinated.

Krismon is the hoola hoop king.

I just did my daily test and I am 4 years younger than my age! YEEEHAAAA I am now younger than Krismon! hehe

Wii fit vs Max

And the winner is.... Max. He loves the running and he really loves to outrun his guide. It is pretty hilarious. I think the wii fit is my new best friend because it will help me wear out my child, not sure if Maggie is ready yet for it. Oh and I need to buy a hula hoop so Max can figure out how to spin his hips. He tries really he does and it is pretty funny to watch but the hoop falls after just a few spins. Our hoola hooper in the family is Krismon. He can really move his hips!

The other game Max likes is the ski jump. He doesn't really have it all figured out but he loves to squat and take off. I like it all. It is fun mixing and matching and taking turns. My only complaint is the switching of players seems to take forever. I wish that part were faster so that when you are exercising together that you can just jump in kind of like how our computer has different log ins and it is easy to switch between the log ins.

It is nice to have something that the whole family can essentially do together and be active in some way short of being outside in the heat or as has been the case this past week, lightening and a little rain.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Why does Monday come so soon?

It is the dreaded day... CLEANING DAY, Pulling teeth day to get my kids to help me get it done day. I think the only good that came was an old U2 song came on the radio to send me back to the time when I was food loose and fancy free. Highschool was not a barrel of laughs but at the same time, I was not caring for children and running a household while building a business. I just had to keep my room clean, help out, work my part time job and go to school. College was just a head of me and I was looking forward to it. Okay enough of that....

The weekend was so jam packed full of activity that I think the kids are just wanting downtime today. The house is almost clean does that count?

I think I overdid my day with cleaning, laundry and costco. But thank goodness for costco, it gave me a chance to tickle and giggle with the kids as we walked the aisles looking at all the goodies. We needed it but I think the last of my energy reserves stayed at Costco instead of coming home with us. Thank goodness it is vege burger night not much to do.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Cranky Moms and Good Food what do they have in common?

Well that is easy enough to answer... When you go out and have a great dinner and your tummy is too full you end up sleeping lousy. Then the sleep subjects wake up at an awful hour like say 5am. It, definitely, makes the day a little tougher. Oh heck who am I kidding. Their mom got replaced with the original oscar the grouch. You know the one I am talking about from the 70s and early 80s before we became such a pc society that our kids could no longer have such a grouchy oscar. Well I guess it has become my duty to replace him so that my kids understand that grouchy people really do exist.

On top of that was the teaser that there existed wii fits at best buys close to the home only to call and have them say nope. Ah what a downer to not get my wii fit. The hope hasn't died since there is talk that they may be coming our way on Sunday. That would be so lovely.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Going on a Wii Fit hunt

So I am trying to think of ways to not only burn through my kids energy but also get my butt in gear or rather maybe grow more of one. hahaha.... We found our wii through a friend and are making a charitable donation to a local group called ShadeTree. They are a women's and Children's shelter. Check them out at http://www.theshadetree.org/

So now it is about getting the wii fit so we can start doing fun family fitness. And I am considering getting the dance dance revolution since the kids think it is hilarious to do when we are out and about. Can you tell I am a wee bit excited by the idea of doing silly dance moves well actually no real dance moves but it would be fun and silly anyways.

"Where is my words on here?" asked Max. I thought I should throw that in since he is forever wanting to add his two cents anyways...

Monday, July 7, 2008

Why I hate cleaning days by heidi o.

I hate cleaning days because it involves a lot of explaining, talking loud, talking louder, talking really really loud. "Why do I need to dust the floorboards? I hate dusting the floorboards," so says the Max. "Well, it is something that you can do quickly and easily and you are just the right height," so says I, the mean momma. "Also, you will not be able to watch tv or play on the computer unless you earn the time by cleaning and good behavior." I know, I know, he is just a kid but he takes for granted the tv. Heck, I take it for granted myself. WAHHHHHH..... Hmphf.

I hate cleaning days because they seem to take forever. "Here let me show you again."(Just imagine me taking a swifter duster and dusting the floor boards, easy right?) "Oh, I see, wow that is easy!" Just wait until he had to wipe doors, boards and walls with a wet towel.

I hate cleaning days because I have to clean. It started all over again. I can just imagine in his mind... "Why is my mom so mean and make me wipe the dirty handprint marks off the wall that Maggie and I make. Doesn't she know that we make them with a lot of care?" The house is clean so that is a good result. Slowly but surely the kids will learn to clean with love in their hearts.... um yeah right!

Well the sleep study took a turn for the worse. We put the handle back on the inside of their door. Hopefully, we will not have to backtrack too much. But I will say, the kids went to sleep pretty darn quickly and Maggie slept clear through to morning. Oh course, she would not nap yesterday so that may have had something to do with it...

Tonight's bedtime was not quite so refreshing. We had wailing and wall pounding and door slamming and that was just me! Nah Max carried on like the end of the world had happened. He went to sleep pretty quickly after letting off all his steam, it was Maggie who had the staying power. Where does her energy come from? She is still supposed to be of an age where she sleeps 12-14 hours and that hasn't been happening. And yet she is still smiley with everyone and fighting with her brother. Here is hoping that it is a short phase........

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th of July!

I don't know if I have written about picking Maggie up from school. When I walk into her classroom, I usually see her before she sees me. Her teacher smiles, nudges her, she sees me and lights up. She runs over,"Mama, Mama. I eat, I sleep." She likes to give me a list of her activities, the things she has accomplished while out of my presence. If she has an accident and the teacher tells me, Maggie repeats that as well. She may be hard to drop off but is a real joy to pick up. I really liked the last report from her teacher... She would do some work, stop and just observe what her other friends were doing for a time. I am trying to figure out which of us, she gets that from.

Persistence pays off....

Max wanted his floppy jalopy. I said no and thought that would be the end of it, because I would be the one getting it down from the closet. He took the challenge and ran with it. He said, I will build something on my own without help. He climbed on top of one of our little plastic drawers and pulled it down off the shelf. Could I get mad? Nahhhh, especially when it didn't seem to phase Krismon's sleep. Heck, I have been wanting Max to show a more independent side with the ability to follow directions so he can create things on his own. Though... right now he is just taking everything apart so we shall see.

Kids in quiet restaurants.... We broke the cardinal rule by taking them to a little pasta shop around the corner. While many people generally enjoy Maggie's squeals of delight and her chatter, it sounded to us like she had a bullhorn in her hand and was projecting to every nook and cranny of the place. Max was much more well behaved. And thank goodness for the little art supplies we picked up in the Philippines that stay in my bottomless purse to keep little ones entertained. I think the bold art on the walls, okay so some of it was a little gaudy( okay you got me a lot gaudy) and this may have contributed to Maggie's overstimulated attitude. The food was wonderful and again thank the US big food gods for giving me an extra large amount of food since I ended up feeding some of mine to Maggie and after Max finished his half portion, some to him as well. It was yummy Chicken Marsala. After dinner, it was all we could do to get out quick enough. I was glad for the bathroom breaks at the end to pee both kids as they provided the time enough to get leftovers wrapped up and the check paid for and then we were out of there into the melting heat. I think we will probably go back there to eat but not with the kids....

"The kids like toys and the parents love them(the kids, me and Maggie) so much to the world and back," so says the Max! He wanted to add his two cents to the blog post. "I want to visit all my grandparents." (done, he says)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

The sleep study continues

So as the experiment progresses, I am not sure I see the end in sight. I have made discoveries though...

If I ignore them, it will take less time.
This means, if I don't yell and I don't really look at, don't react in any way, it takes some of the wind out of their sails.

If I sit in the room next to little Ms bed, she can't travel.
She loves to get down, open the door, get walked back to her bed and thrown in. Or she likes to get down and climb up to Max's bunk. By sitting on the crib mattress, I can prevent her from doing either which short circuits her fun.

If I sit in there, in the dark, I get a chance to pray for more patience.
This has truly helped me to feel more capable as a parent. I am not saying my patience doesn't take leave of me but it is growing hopefully stronger and stronger. I actually like sitting in the dark, ignoring the kids misbehavior and taking some moments for me.

Now this was last night.... let us see what happens tonight.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

School is fun!

This is what little M said all weekend. She would say it, sign it, giggle about it and was fine until we arrived dun dun dun at the room this morning. She saw this other girl struggling with separation anxiety and her heart just must have gone out to her because as soon as we stepped in the door, she began to cry. I tried to calm her down as I put her lunchbox away and had Big M put her waterstuff and back pack bags away. In the end, I just set her down and hightailed it from the room.

Max, on the other hand, was super duper easy to drop off.

This weekend, Max was inspired to paint for everyone. It is so nice to see him create art and give it to others as gifts. In return, he and Maggie fell in love with doritos at a bbq. Maggie's mouth was caked with the orange. Max would eat a few before getting back into the fray in the pool.

He so loved to shoot people with the water guns and so hated to be squirted back. By the end though, he got used to the spray of water in his face as people jumped in and did canonballs. That was a great day of tiring the kids out.

I think the most amazing thing right now is seeing so many changes in both kids but especially Max. All of a sudden, he is taking charge of his play and the things he wants to do. He doesn't pull everything out and he knows that some toys are for when Maggie is napping. He enjoys that one on one time and so do I. It is just nice to see his attention span grow.