Category: Kids

And sometimes Mickey is a source of comfort

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Here is a short follow-up to my post about Mickey Mouse the other day.

My son started school last week and on the first day we were up bright and early! (Let’s hope it is this easy everyday.) The past few weeks he has been asking to watch Paw Patrol (just one episode Mommy) when he wakes up in the morning. You can tell he was somewhat hesitant that first morning of school. As we sat down, he looked at me and said, “Mommy, I want a Mickey”. I looked at him and knew that he was nervous about school. I said “No problem honey”. We watched an episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and cuddled for twenty minutes.

Mickey may not be one of our regular TV choices these days. However, Mickey may be just hit the spot when all we need is a little TLC.

Happy Monday all!

You can contact me at themrszfiles@gmail.com.

See ya real soon Mickey Mouse

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“Mommy, just one more Mickey.”

“Don’t you want to watch something else?”

“No Mommy, one more Mickey. Pleaseeeee!”

This was a conversation my son and I had about two months ago after watching many episodes of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse that day. It seems like we had had this conversation everyday since he could talk. His love for Mickey stretched far and wide. Of course, I was growing tired of it. The first five hundred times we watched Mickey were great. Then it just became mundane to me. However, the old saying “Be careful what you wish for” came to bite me in the you know what.

About a month or so ago my son asked out of the blue to watch Paw Patrol. I had no idea what this show was or what channel it was on. I said I would find it later. After an hour of constant whining, I caved and found it was on Nick Jr. Nick Jr? We never watch that channel. I have no clue where he learned of this show but I turned it on and it became his new obsession.

Paw Patrol has become an instant favorite in our house. However, it has made Mommy’s consistent life seem somewhat off kilter. Mickey Mouse what part of our routine. After breakfast we would watch one episode. After dinner we would watch one episode. Some other episodes were sprinkled throughout our daily routine here and there. And then, just one day, it was gone. To be replaced by a pack of dogs who save the day.

Don’t get me wrong. Paw Patrol is actually a really cute cartoon. It is just that this sudden change of shows makes me feel like my baby is no longer a baby. He is growing up. His taste in shows is changing. Does this all sound weird? I mean, it’s a cartoon for crying out loud.

Mickey Mouse was my baby’s show. It was the first show where we cuddled and laughed together. Whenever he saw something in real life he could connect to Mickey he would proudly state it. Now that throne has been passed on to Paw Patrol.

I guess whenever my little big boy is having a bad day, Ryder and his team of pups will have to come and save the day. I guess we will just yelp for help (please tell me there are other mommies or daddies out there who get my reference in those last two sentences 😉 ).

Don’t worry Mickey Mouse. We won’t forget you. This isn’t goodbye. This is just a “See ya real soon” moment for us.

P.S. The picture is from my son’s first birthday.

A Mommy of Just Boys

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It started right after my husband and I had a gender reveal party for our second little one. We both held onto the knife as we cut a slice and, lo and behold, it was blue. Another boy. I was beyond ecstatic, not only for my husband and myself, but for my oldest. He would have a friend for life. They would be just over 2 years apart. They will be best friends! Then came this: ” You know you have to try for a third now.” “Oh, you need a little girl in your life. You have to have a third!” “Don’t you miss having a little girl?” Even the minute after my little one was born, a nurse said to me “I guess we will be seeing you back here in a few years for that girl”.

My favorite one also is “Oh bless you. You have two boys”. Yes, I am certainly blessed. But, this is more like a I feel bad for you type of blessing. Um, thanks but no thanks.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I know everyone means well. It is just human nature to say these things. However, it actually started to make me doubt myself about having just boys for awhile. I did a lot of soul searching, and a lot of crying over the girl that would most likely never be. There was a definite void that I felt and It was really starting to put a damper on my pregnancy, and for a few months after my little one was born.

Then I started thinking. Is it that bad that I just have boys? Will my life be so much more simpler if I had a girl? Is this societies view on this topic talking? Or do I really need a girl to be complete? I know people who have just boys and they seem happy and content. Is it just me?

Then a view of my life 20 and 30 years from now played over and over in my head. My mom, sister and I send group texts all the time. Who will I group text? (If there is still such a thing as texting then.) Who will I go shopping with? Who is going to pick me up when I am old and can’t drive a car anymore? Then it dawned on me. Why does a girl have to do all of that? My boys may not want to come shopping with me, but I am sure they will drive me places when I get older. And a simple “Hi” sent in a text seems simple but will make this Mommy super excited.

Yes, there are some things that I know for sure will probably never happen. I will never know what it is like to put tiny pink bows on little wispy hair. I will never know what it is like to shop in the girl’s department for my own kids (although, that does’t really count at Target anymore. So, yay me!) I will never know what it is like to throw a bridal or baby shower. Or go prom dress shopping. And, yes, I will always just be the mother in law. This last one scares me more then anything else. Please boys, marry someone who likes me. I know I already love them for loving you.

But there are lots of things that I already have that make my life so amazing and that I wouldn’t change for the world.

I know that I will always be there to kiss scraped knees and to give extra big hugs too.

I know what it is like to be around endless energy and to always be on the go.

I know what it is like to race cars just one more time before bed.

I know what it is like when your little boy looks up at you and, out of no where, says “I love you so much Mommy”. And then gives you the biggest hug before he runs away and leaves you stunned and blessed.

I know what it is like to have the craziest day and then to cuddle at night while we read a book or watch just one more Paw Patrol (because 7 episodes in one day is not enough. Bad Mommy of the year award over here, but, in the words of my grandfather “What are you gonna do?”).

Having a girl would be nice. But, I am so blessed with my amazing, loving, and healthy kids. I couldn’t have asked for anything better. So, the next time you see a Mommy of just boys, think twice before you ask them about “going for the girl”. I highly doubt they want to talk about their procreating time with you. And, in actuality, they are most likely, extremely happy.

Summertime musings

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Hello my fellow readers. Time flies for two reasons for me: 1. I have two kids and 2. It is summertime. Sorry for my delay in posts. I still think about this blog and all of you everyday. I find topics to write about all around me. So, here is my latest and greatest.

My oldest lovely loves to go to the park. So much so that I need to spell it whenever I refer to it when he is in earshot. (I actually think he knows how to spell it now, so eventually I will need a new tactic.) One day a few weeks ago I decided to take my two babies to the park. It was a gorgeous mid May afternoon. After pushing my big guy on the swings, we headed over to the slide. The park was pretty empty except for a few kids from a local daycare center. I was sitting on a bench feeding my little guy and watching my oldest go down the slide. A few benches over I hear one of the daycare center teachers say” What are you a girl? What are you a girl? You can’t like the color pink. Haha. Everyone look (insert name of boy here) likes pink.” And then all the kids, and other teachers, proceed to laugh. I was horrified. A few moments later a little girl fell and started crying. She kept saying “I want my mommy” over and over again. The teacher that was in charge of her group said ” ugh, what time is your mommy coming to pick you up crybaby?”. Now, at this point, I was fuming! I politely asked one of the teachers what daycare center this was. She gave me the name and handed me a business card in case I was interested. I looked at her and said “Oh no. I want to make sure never to put my children in this establishment. And tomorrow I will be contacting your director about the awful scene I just witnessed.”. She was stunned and didn’t say anything. I got my oldest and we left the park.
Let me be honest. I definitely lost my patience when I was in the classroom. But I taught older kids. You can reason with older children. These poor babies were just that: babies. I wanted to cry watching their faces.

Another observation I had just today was our society’s reliance on cell phones. I know I have written about this before but I can’t help but notice. We were at the park again and this time there was a larger group of kids. As I was watching my oldest, I happen to see a little boy trying to get his mom’s attention. She kept saying “One minute” as she searched on her cell phone and talked to her other mommy friends. Her son left and was running around like crazy. He wasn’t watching and bumped into another kid. He started crying and the mom came over. She started blaming the other kid right away. Of course, she never saw what happened since her attention was on her phone and conversation. Had she been watching (like I was), she would have known that it was her son who bumped into the other kid.

I get it. I’ve been engrossed in my cell phone too. But not at the park or any public place. These babies need our attention and support. Leave the cell phone usage for nap times (unless it is an emergency).

Let me know what you think on any of the topics discussed today. I love to hear from all of you :).

Time to get healthy!

Wow!! Time flies with two kids! My littlest is 6 weeks old already. In the vast scheme of things, that’s nothing. But it feels like he has been with us forever. With all of the love, smiles, good times(and some not so good times) it is time for mommy to pay attention to one very important person: ME.

I know it won’t be easy. I definitely did not have a super healthy diet during this pregnancy. And I kind of held onto it these past 6 weeks. Besides running after my 2 year old, exercise was nonexistent. So now it is time to get back at it. I have 10 pesky pounds that need to go!!

I am attempting to fit in 20 minutes of the treadmill at least three days a week. That will be my starting point. By April I hope to be at four days. Wish me luck. And if anyone has any suggestions on how to fit exercise in to my daily routine with two kids, please comment away!

Oh running shoes. I have missed you so!
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There’s nothing like good friends and a friendly project exchange

Happy Wednesday loyal readers!
Today’s post is twofold. One part of being a teacher is the socialization with your colleagues. You become very close with the teachers on your grade, and most likely, with the grade above and below you. However, teaching can be a very solitary profession. Once class starts, your door closes and it is you and your students for most of the day. You see other teachers in the hallway. Most times you only have time for a friendly “Hi” and “How are you?”. Then the bell rings and it is show time again.
Since becoming a mommy, as well as a stay at home mom, I have become close with two great mommies. I worked with them in the same building for many years and we use to just say hi as we passed in the hallway. Motherhood and our common bond of having all boys (there are five boys between the 3 of us) have brought us together as wonderful friends. We have had countless email chains and numerous playdates.
Since all three of us are teachers, many of our conversations are about projects we do with our children. Yes, I admit it: I do run my home slightly like being in a classroom. You can take a teacher out of the profession (for awhile), but you can’t take the profession out of the teacher. The three of us swap project ideas all the time. This simple project was given to us by Vanessa. Thank you Vanessa for this super idea!! (And Tracy, don’t worry. One of your project ideas will show up here soon :). )

For those of you who have toddlers and want to foster their knowledge of colors, you will love this. It is simple too.
These are the materials you will need:
Large sheet of paper (I used chart paper)
3 pictures of objects that are red, blue, green, and yellow (or any colors you choose. I used Google images)
Markers
Crayons
Glue or tape

On the large paper make four sections. Label each section with the color name. Put all of the pictures in front of your little one and let them categorize the pictures into the correct category. Let them glue or tape the pictures on. My son loved this part! You can then ask them the name of the pictures. I decided to write the name of each object after my son told me. We also went over the letter sounds of each beginning letter. My son didn’t want to stop so I gave him crayons that corresponded with each group to color each section. Below is a picture of the final product:
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We had a lot of fun with this! Since this winter has been super cold and being stuck inside because I’m not taking a newborn out in this weather, projects like this are a lifesaver. Thanks again Vanessa!

Apple picking time!

Fall time. I both love it and dread it at the same time. A new season is a promise of so many new possibilities. I love the changing of the leaves and all of the exciting fall festivals. However, it is a constant reminder of what is coming next: winter. I have never been a fan of the of the winter. I rather dislike the cold and snow. It is annoying to have to put on a million layers just to step outside. The sun sets so early. It is rather dismal. For over 30 years I have lived in this type of climate and I don’t think I have ever gotten use to it.

On a brighter note, my family and I went apple picking this past weekend! Well, there weren’t that many apples left on the trees (maybe an earlier visit next year will be in the plans), but we still had an awesome time. My little one loved picking up the apples that had fallen from the trees and throwing them. We saw different animals and got to spend time with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. It was a great day!

A few days before we went apple picking, we had a really rainy and damp day where we live. So, I decided it was time to do an art project. My son and I made an apple tree in preparation of our upcoming apple picking trip. It was really simple. I used a marker to make the tree part and the trunk. My little one then painted the trunk brown and the leaves green. I didn’t have red pompoms on hand, so we wound up painting cotton balls red (I actually wound up doing that part while little bub smeared his hands with paint :)  ). For a project that I thought about 5 minutes before we started, it came out cute! Below are pictures of the tools we used and the final project:

Art supplies:

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Waiting for our masterpiece to dry:

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All done!

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Hope you can use this project in your fall activities. Let me know how it comes out!

You can also contact me at themrszfiles@gmail.com.

A rainy day thought

Today was a rainy morning where we live. While my son and I were playing with his toys it reminded me of a rainy day during the summer. I had never shared this picture with you and I couldn’t wait to write to all of you :).

On that rainy summer day, we had played with toys but after about 2 hours we were both getting bored. So Mommy decided to take out the paint. I figured why not. Let’s get messy. And that is exactly what we did. My son fingerpainted for a good 90 minutes and Mommy just let him go (even though my inner voice was screaming “What a mess!!”. Sometimes my OCD gets the best of me but that day I just let him have fun.).

Paint wound up going everywhere. But the thing that I noticed more than anything was his hands. I couldn’t resist taking a picture. I just thought it was the cutest and sweetest thing. And now I will share it with you:

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Adorable right? I am so glad I let go of my insecurities about the mess. We would have missed out on an awesome painting session. But most of all just letting my son be what he is: a kid. Here’s to the little things :).

P.S. This is what my little Picasso made:

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You can also contact me at themrszfiles@gmail.com.

Back from a summer hiatus!

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Hello Happy Mrs. Z Readers! I am back from a refreshing summer hiatus. Time seems to fly by during the summer. We literally tried to pack in every summer activity you can do in 60 days. I think I need a vacation from vacation.  On the positive side, it was one of the best summers in a long time. I’d like to thank my little guy for that one. I have loved going to farmer’s markets, parks, pools, beaches, farms, and countless other places with him.

There was something I noticed the other day that I wanted to relay to you. My husband, little man, and I went for a walk with our dog a few days ago. It was one of those early September evenings when the sun is almost setting but hasn’t yet. (I could have just said dusk but why be so mundane ;). ) The temperature was a perfect 72 degrees with puffy white clouds in the sky here and there. It was really an awesome night. During our walk I did notice one thing: It was very quiet. I heard crickets and the last of the summer cicada in the distance. There were the few cars that were passing by. But there wasn’t the sound of voices. Then it dawned on me: school has started.  Children were probably involved in their nightly routines of getting ready for the next day. Then it dawned on me again: I needed to really focus on this night. On this sense of freedom. On how simple life is right now. In a few short years I will be back in the daily grind. Joining the work force once. I wanted to bottle that night and hold on to it. To use it as my happy place.

It is a moment in time that will stay with me forever.

Happy back to school to all of the kids out there and to their amazing teachers! This is going to be a super year!

You can contact me at themrszfiles@gmail.com.

It’s that time of year…time to shop for school supplies!

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Wow! We are already a week into August. I haven’t been in the classroom for sometime but I always get the feeling right around this time every summer. For those of you who are teachers, you know that feeling. Just as you are getting relaxed and are enjoying your free time, it’s time to stock up and get ready for another year.

As a side note, I can hear the snorts and sounds of annoyance from all of the non- teachers, or people who do not support teachers. I don’t want to hear any cracks about having the summer off. I don’t want to hear how we “only” work 10 months and have tons of vacation. It is all true. However, don’t take out your jealousy on what you think is an easy job. I do not make any rude comments about your job, which I am sure you are amazing at. You had every opportunity to become a teacher. You chose another profession, which I am sure suited you best. So, leave the comments someplace else and let us enjoy our free time. I mean, if you have all these negative comments to say, why don’t you try it for a day. It is the best job in the world, but, if you didn’t become a teacher, I am sure you probably couldn’t handle it. (Was that a little mean? Probably. Oh well. I guess it’s for all of the rude comments I have had thrown at me for so many years. You can take it or leave it. Your choice :).)

Moving right along, let’s get back to school starting soon. I have seen a lot of my teacher friends ( and moms of school age children) post questions about where to find the best sales on school supplies. My first response is to try the dollar store. Now, I wouldn’t recommend buying everything there. The No.2 pencils are not the best. The erasers always leave a pink streak when you use them. The copy paper is kind of thin and not the best for printing. However, I would buy things like folders, Crayola crayons and markers, pens, etc. You have to walk around to see and make your own judgment.

After I exhausted the dollar store, I would scan the fliers I receive each week for good sales. This week at Target, for example, Post-Its are 99 cents. That’s a pretty good deal. Folders are 50 cents and scissors are 99 cents at Target as well.  If I were you I would also check out Walgreens, CVS, and Rite Aid.

My suggestion is to shop around. One tip that I try to stick to is not to shop too much at Staples. They have great products. However, they can be very pricey! I only go there if they have their penny sales or if there is a really good sale. I try to avoid that place until October anyway. The lines are usually crazy long from mid-August until mid-September.

Happy School Supply Shopping! If you come across any good deals, comment below. I am sure we can all use a good deal :).

You can also contact me at themrszfiles@gmail.com.