Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Spring Cleaning

Posted by Sarah at Tuesday, March 30, 2010 1 comments Links to this post
I've never really felt compelled to do the whole "Spring Cleaning" thing, but we are, quite possibly, living in squalor right now. To be fair, it's not really squalor, but it's definitely below my standards (which are low for housecleaning).

Mainly the problem is that we have stacks, piles, and mountains of stuff. Books, magazines, random to-do lists half-completed, odds and ends are littering our house. I tackled part of the kitchen today. (Well, if we're being honest here, just the counter.) I bought a desk organizer from Target and cleaned out our old kitchen basket. Everything is now neatly in its place. Everything that didn't fit in the basket got shredded or pitched into the trash.

Now, the only problem is where to go next. I don't feel like our house is necessarily dirty -- just cluttered. I've bought "organizers" before, but they never seem to work out for one reason or another. You really need to have a plan and see what fits for your particular situation. Boxes and bins sometimes just contain the clutter instead of eliminating excess junk.

Normally, I'm great at organizing smaller spaces -- like my classroom at school -- but the entire house just seems so DAUNTING.

Tell me, interwebz, how do you stay organized and eliminate the clutter at home?

In the meantime, I'm going to peruse Martha's Spring Cleaning checklist and see if I can muster some motivation to tackle it.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Posted by Sarah at Saturday, March 27, 2010 3 comments Links to this post
Is it possible to have a 104 degree fever TWICE in one week, driving your emotionally-fragile mom to the brink of Googling-madness? Why, yes it is, dear friends.

We're going to the doctor today.

Here's hoping that there will be fewer lukewarm baths and and less nail-biting in our future.

I suppose I've learned a few things during this prolonged illness.

1. If there's a bright side to having a sick kid, it's this: The Snuggles. Little Man normally is a rough 'n tumble, lemme go, lemme go kind of kid. But, when he's not feeling well, he's content to snuggle with his mama ALL DAY LONG. It's nice when I'm not worrying that he has some sort of fatal illness.

2. A calm husband is worth his weight in gold during times of sickness. Thanks, Smartest Man Alive.

3. Always be prepared. We had several bottles of Pedialyte, Tylenol and Motrin on hand so that when his fever spiked we didn't have to run to the store. I'm making it my personal mission to make sure we always have those supplies on hand.

UPDATE: We have a virus plus an ear infection! Antibiotics have been injested and we are simply waiting for them to work their magic.

Fever, Part II

Posted by Sarah at Saturday, March 27, 2010 1 comments Links to this post
We were fever-free for about five days. Then, today the fever returned. Little Man slept fitfully last night, but we chalked it up to sleeping in the Pack 'n Play. He wound up in bed with us for most of the night, thrashing and snorting.

My mom swears that she can "smell" sickness before symptoms even surface. She says it's a sweet, acetone smell. I've always been a bit skeptical, but she's never been wrong. While I schlepped The Smartest Man Alive to his lacrosse tournament early Saturday, mom came over to watch Little Man. She announced that he had the "sick smell" and put him down for a nap.

My sister and I scoffed at her prediction and that was Mistake #1: Don't Mess with Mama's Intuition. Six hours later, Little Man was feverish, cranky, and cantankerous.

Right now, we're hoping the fever is being caused by a nasty tooth and not an ear infection or a recurrence of the cold.

Fingers crossed.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Hot Mess

Posted by Sarah at Sunday, March 21, 2010 0 comments Links to this post
You haven't heard from me in a while and that's because we've been a HOT MESS around these parts.
  • Little Man had his first serious fever yesterday. (104 degrees. OMG.) We think it was a combination of his 15-month shots, teething, and a virus. Thankfully, he is miraculously recovered today and currently refusing to nap.
  • To take my mind off the above-mentioned drama of the fever, I attempted to make Pioneer Woman's Caramel Pumpkin Gingersnap Cheesecake. The result was a very scrumptious cheesecake that would not come out of the springform pan and dripped hot caramel all over the bottom of my oven. Have you ever tried to scrub hardened caramel off the bottom of your oven? No? Well, you're missing a good time.
  • The Smartest Man Alive and I have had lingering head colds all week. I've been alternately lounging on the couch feeling miserable and declaring myself cured for about five days.
  • To make up for all this chaos, I decided to attempt these cute little Individual Raspberry Cobblers. While they bake, I'm watching re-runs of The Real Housewives of NYC and waiting for the oven to blow-up or something.

Good thing tomorrow's Monday and Auntie is heading our way.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Brain Food

Posted by Sarah at Wednesday, March 10, 2010 0 comments Links to this post
Before Little Man was born, I devoured dozens of child-rearing and baby development books. They preached, advised, and recommended the best ways to raise a well-adjusted, intelligent child.

I thought I was well-prepared, but we all know you can never be truly prepared for motherhood. When Little Man was an infant, I worried about SIDS, tummy time, feeding him formula, and finding a good day care.

As he's grown, my worries have changed to motor-skill and language development. It's brought out a side of me that I'm not really proud of. As I listen to other parents speak about their children, I'm mentally ticking off how Little Man compares. It's brought out a lot of unneccessary worry on my part, and I've recognized this in myself, but it's been hard to stop.

I just started reading Einstein Never Used Flashcards: How Our Children Really Learn -- and Why They Need to Play More and Memorize Less* by a pair of child psychologists.

This book was the Aha! moment that I needed. Being a teacher, I know how children learn. It just reinforced what I already know, but it was exactly the reassurance that I needed. Little Man is learning plenty just by playing. He doesn't need special classes or flashcards to learn about the world around him.

It's also helped me appreciate his own interests. Little Man loves books and puzzles. He jabbers and gestures. He has buddies at day care and eats and sleeps well. In short, he's a perfectly normal 15-month old boy.

*This is not a paid endorsement. I bought the book on Amazon and am only expressing my personal opinion.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

To do: Make a List

Posted by Sarah at Sunday, March 07, 2010 1 comments Links to this post
Every year, the excitement of the approaching summer hits me around spring time. I start making a mental list of all kinds of things I just don't have time for during the school year.

The idea of months away from work to just do stuff is sometimes overwhelming. For weeks, sometimes months, I walk around our house announcing that various things are going to get taken care of once it's summer. But, if we're being honest here, most of the stuff doesn't get done. It gets shelved in favor of vacation, spending time with friends, reading, and basically relaxing.

This summer, I'm making a list and checking it twice. I can't resist a good list and the feeling of accomplishment once something gets checked off.

1. Continue on my 100 book crusade. I've done the math and I need to read at least 8 books per month. I've already read 11 in January and February, but I'll have more time to read during the summer.

2. Make
Cupcake-Pops. These are from Bakerella and as soon as I laid my eyes on them, I feel in love. Seriously, l-o-v-e.

3. Finally rid our house of the various mismatched sheets, ill-fitting clothes, old dishes, cheap cutlery, you name it. It's going!

4. Update this blog more often!

5. Finish Little Man's 1st year scrapbook. On second thought: Finish all the scrapbooks that are half-finished. *wink* *wink* Smartest Man Alive. (I'm still working on his 30th birthday scrapbook two years later.)

...I'm sure I'll have other things to add as the weather starts warming up and summer approaches. What's on your to-do list?

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