Friday, May 31, 2013

Week 40: Start to Summer

Week 40: 05/19/13 - 05/25/13

Oh Miss Beans.
This week, we reached the end of the tunnel.

In fact.
I am writing while you nap as we speak.
Because I'm on summer break.

Let's just let that simmer for a moment.

I have to work throughout the summer.
One week in, and I already had to attend a professional work day.
And I've been staying up way too late working on things to try to minimize the blow of the chaos sure to ensue from the rollout of common core standards in our district next year.

I'm on summer break.

So I work while you nap.
I blog.
I spend an entire day organizing my closet.
I purge clothes I don't wear.
I clean the office and organize my crafty things.
*Because I'm so crafty.*
Your dad and I watch movies.
I make baby food.
I go to Sonic's Happy Hour
I get a new package from Amazon Prime daily.
*Because I have too much time on my hands*.
I send packages to my best friend in Africa.
I frequent the isles of Hobby Lobby.
I dine al fresco.
I have cookouts with my favorites.

But most importantly,
I hang with my sweet Chunkin.

And my how things can change in one week.

You are suddenly a feisty little thing.
Don't get me wrong.
You are still sweet and dainty.
And of course quite wary of strangers.
In fact, you just burst into tears last week when a man at Dillons grabbed your feet.
*Although I can't say I blame you.*

But you have developed a fun, sassy little tude.

For one, you finally cut that top tooth you've been working on for weeks.
*Praise the Lord.*

And you decided to surprise Dad and I by flipping to your belly in the middle of the night one night.
This may not seem like such a big deal to many.
But you have always despised being on your belly.
And you're not much of a mover.

So imagine our surprise when we went in to wake you one morning.
And you were on your belly at the opposite end of the crib.
Just scooting around.
With a huge ornery grin on your face.

Now that you've discovered this new world view,
you turn to your belly after we put you down.
And scoot around in your crib.
And have wrestling matches with your stuffed animals.

Feisty little thing.

Dad and I had a nice little preview to the world of toddlerdom.

Because you, Miss Beans, had your first tantrum.

You see, you love to play silly games with your Dad.
Like the other day, every time he sat you down, you instantly slammed yourself backward.
*Luckily, there was a nice couch cushion.*

Or like your steamroller game.
Where you roll right off Daddy's chest.

This is your favorite.
Get on Dad's chest.
Roll off.
Laugh hysterically.

You were trying to roll off the couch the other day.
And, like the good parent that he is, Dad would not let you.

You stopped for a second.
Looked him straight in the eye.
Stared for a moment in utter disbelief.
And began to cry.
And kick your feet.
As if to say, "I HAVE MY RIGHTS!"

So Dad caved.
And let you roll.
Right into his arms.

And you were our happy Chunkin again.

Something tells me we have our work cut out for us.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Getting Real

The Scene:
March 2004.
ADPi study room.
Super late night.
Feverishly working on a PR Design project.

I'm startled as my best friend breaks my concentration,
"Hey Ang, you've got to come check out this new website."

I walk over.
Sit down beside her.
And am instantly drawn in.
Like nothing I'd ever seen.
So forthcoming.
So revealing.

I didn't quite get it.
Yet was so intrigued.

And just like that.
I became a Facebook believer.
*And for those of you young-uns out there, this was before you could post pictures and you had to have a college .edu e-mail address to even join. 

Two years later, I found another way to suck the life out of my time.
I became addicted to the blogging world.
Just another outlet where others could over-divulge information.
And I loved every ounce of it.

Then, just in time for me to begin my teaching journey, Pinterest came along.
A perfect place for someone who lacks original creativity.
Like my very own personal lesson planner.
*I can remember the days when looking for lesson ideas and only 2 or 3 (and many times zero) results came up when I searched. *

I mean.
What did we ever do without social media?

The thought makes me shudder.

Social media also has a dark side.
I really should just speak for myself.

Although quite entertaining and often useful, today's addiction to blogging, Instagram, and Pinterest can be somewhat destructive...if I personally am not careful.

I sometimes find myself going down a not-so-uplifting path.
As I am bombarded with pictures and blogs posts of "perfection".

Bodies that look like they've been hand-sculpted.
Homes that look like Martha herself came in and designed every room.
Meals made from scratch with ingredients I can't pronounce...every night of the week
Family photos with babies who never cry and hit every milestone 6 months early.
Vacations in private villas nicer than my own house.

Meanwhile, I'm still trying to accept my after-baby body.
And we thank our lucky stars if only one thing falls apart or needs fixed in our house on a given week.
A California Pizza Kitchen pizza on sale at Wal-Mart is pretty much gourmet at this point in our lives.
I'm pretty sure there's an instant fuss-and-crank button for the moment I pick Lyla up after work.
And our idea of a luxury vacation is making it through a full episode of Mad Men and going to sleep by 9 p.m. on a Friday.

How would the social interwebs feel about that painted picture of perfection?

But isn't real is so much more entertaining and relatable?
Real is what I really want to see.
I want to see the 6 mounds of laundry and the fact that you've been living out of your laundry basket for 2 weeks.
I want to see pics of frozen peas and oatmeal for dinner. 
I want to see your tantrum-throwing toddler screaming in the isles of Target.

Two recent conversations stick out in my mind as much-needed encouragement, and they really put things into perspective for me.

I want to remember these conversations.

1). When my best friend from Rhode Island came for a visit over spring break, we discussed a lot about being perfect. I mentioned that sometimes it seems like everyone but me seems to have it together. And she replied by reminding me that people only share the good and amazing. No one really sees the ugly. Or the reality. All we really see via social media outlets are the Pinterest-perfect nurseries, the spent-my-entire-paycheck-but-at-least-it's-designer outfits, and the ridiculously expensive so-perfect-it-could-be-in-a-magazine weddings. And, is it just me, or do you know those people who you swear create a scenario simply to post and prove to others just how "perfect" their lives are?

Well. I'm really not interested in that.
I want real.

2). Last week, I had a phone conversation with another b.f.f. in Atlanta. We were also talking about the everyday stresses of life and the all-too-common painted picture of perfection. She said she saw an interview of a very successful career woman and mom. A woman, who like many of us, struggled with the pressure to be perfect. Until one day, this woman had an epiphany. She stopped striving to be Pinterest-Perfect and instead focused on being real. No more color-coordinated over-the-top birthday parties for her kids. Just a cupcake with a candle...and a whole lot of love. No more working til the wee hours of the night to add just the right touches to a project...when that project was presentation-ready hours before. It wasn't until this woman let go and just enjoyed reality that she could truly see how perfect her life really was.

Now, don't get me wrong.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with obsessing over details.
Or putting blood, sweat, and tears into DIY projects.
Or spending way too much money on fashion-forward outfits for your newborn.
Or spending your entire summer searching for the perfect decor for your kid's only first birthday. *Ahem*.

We put enough pressure on ourselves.
And then add in life, careers, and children?

So, the added pressure of social media bombarding us with seemingly perfect everything can be a bit overwhelming. 

Because you know something?
My life is nowhere near perfect. 
In fact, if you secretly took a still-frame at any given moment in my day, I'm sure you would find me disheveled, running around like a lunatic, and looking like I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing.
You'd see me in a 10 year old t-shirt with mismatched socks. 
You'd see unfinished house projects and half-painted wall trim. 
You'd see a pile of dust at least 6 months old on top of the refrigerator and food splatters in the microwave.

But you'd also see that I'm happy. 
Like, real-happy.
Not perfect-happy. 

You'd also see that my heart is close to bursting into 5 million pieces.
Because despite the fact that my sink is overflowing with bottles and my bed hasn't been made in over a month, I've got a little Chunkin who's clapping for herself because she is finally rolling over. 
*Four months later than other babies.*
And you'd see that I'm clapping with her. 
And I'm smiling so hard, it hurts. 
Because I'm proud too. 

So, here's to being real.
Here's to the new perfect.

P.S. Hop on over to Bloglovin.
I mean, why not add one more social media outlet to your list. ;)

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Saturday, May 25, 2013

Week 39: Kansas Girl

Week 39: 05/12/13 - 05/18/13

Well, Chunkin.
You survived your first tornado.
Unfortunately it was more-than-likely not your last.

Because you are a Kansas girl.
And Kansas brings the most unpredictable weather. 

Just a few weeks ago, for example.
It was 35 and 85 degree weather all in the same week.
But this past weekend's weather snuck up on us.

It started off nice.
In fact, we were outside the entire weekend.
Dining al fresco.
Playing on the deck while Dad and I gardened.
Hanging with Grams and Gramps.

And we celebrated your friend Henry's first birthday in style.
Dressed in our hats and bow ties as it was a Kentucky Derby theme.

Dad and I had a blast. 
You also had a long as Mom and Dad didn't leave your sight.
Or put you down.
Your stranger anxiety was in full force. 
This included being terrified of other babies.
We're really hoping to outgrow this soon.

You were not enjoying the fact that you were so sweaty.
It was incredibly humid. 
Just begging for a storm.

And that's exactly what happened. 
We had tornado warnings the next day.
One even touched down right near GiGi and Pops.
It was 2 miles wide.

You and I hung out in the basement.
While your father finished brewing beer. 
It wasn't until I begged with tears in my eyes that he come to the basement.

5 minutes later, our window blew out in the garage.
Glass and hail was everywhere. 
Right where he was brewing beer minutes before.

Now I know where you get your stubborn-ness from.

But we were very lucky.
We didn't get any of the tornadoes near us.
Just monster hail.
We have to get our roof, gutters, siding, and a window replaced.
But others in Moore, Oklahoma were not so lucky. 
Including a group of third graders.

All I could do was snuggle you to pieces.
While thanking God for allowing us to be abundantly blessed.
And praying for those who lost everything.

I'm not quite sure how we got so lucky.
All I know is I am filled with gratitude.
And thankfulness.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Nine Months

9 Months Old: 05/19/13
17 lbs. 12 oz.

Sweet Chunkin.
It is so fun to watch you grow into this little person. 
With a distinct personality. 

Most of the time, you're a dainty southern belle.
The damsel in distress type. 
A real lady.

But then every now and again, you get a burst of silly.
And are straight up goofy.
You make us laugh.
And of course it's contagious.
So you start laughing. 
Then we laugh some more. 

Regardless of your demeanor for the day, you always make us smile. 
So thanks for that. 

Our month in a nutshell. 

Milestones. Someone hold the phone. You are tolerating your belly this month. And dare I say...enjoying it even. Last month, you would push up on your arms for about 3 seconds and then take a rest. Although it was adorable, I worried a wee bit considering that you can't learn to be mobile when you stop every 3 seconds to rest your head. 

But now, you are completely pushing up on your arms. And you are able to balance yourself on all just aren't quite sure how to move yet. But you can turn in a circle on your belly when you need to get to something you want. And you scoot backwards when you're really excited. But it all depends on if you're motivated in that particular moment. 

Because let's face it. On days you don't want to be on your belly at all, you simply roll over. Then I'll put you back on your belly, and you roll over. And then start laughing. You think it's the funnest game you've ever played. And you're pretty proud of yourself. You stubborn mule, you. But at least we're progressing!

Firsts.  You've been perfecting your wave. You mostly do it for me in the mornings as I say goodbye, but you did it for the first time for Grams and Gramps. I'm pretty sure that made their year. 

The only other major first this month was Mama's first Mother's Day. It was so special. 

Big Moments. You sure know how to make me feel special. 
Like when you hold out your arms because you want me to hold you. Or how you look right into my eyes, then flash a smile so big I think it just might extend out past your face. And I can't explain to you what it does to my heart when every time I walk in the door, you starting jumping up and down and squealing. 

And you've been so cuddly. Often before I got to work in the mornings, we just have some mother-daughter time with you lying on my chest while I rock you.  It's amazing how perfectly your little body just...fits. OH! And you do this sweet thing where when we pick you up, you clutch us really hard and gasp. Like you can't hug us hard enough. Melt my heart why don't you. 

And then there's your time with Dad. Oh my goodness. You sure love your daddy. The two of you just laugh and laugh. He flies you around, makes bath time your favorite time of day, and plays all kinds of silly games with you. Your current favorite is rolling off his chest onto the bed. 

But I think my favorite thing this month has been how much you love to imitate us. You love to study everything we do...and it always catches us off guard when you make a noise or do something we do. Like "coughing". Boy you love to fake cough. You and Dad will "cough" back and forth for hours. And you make these deep, breathy noises (my FAVORITE) and sing-songy noises.

Eating. Well. The good news is, you are a fabulous eater. You have eaten everything we've ever given you. This month you we added to your palette: whole grain banana pancakes, mango, applesauce, yogurt, yellow zucchini, pumpkin, pizza (only a few bites of mama's.)

There really isn't bad news per se, it's just that you've lost your enthusiastic zeal for milk. Nursing or bottle. Which doesn't help my major-dip-in-supply situation. But luckily, I have 4 days of school left, so  I really feel that my body will be able to adjust to your needs since I won't be working. 

In other good news, you have gotten to be a champ pincher grasper-er. You love feeding yourself. However, we still have to help you out with the slippery things like bananas and mango. 

Sleep. Well, Girlfriend. You love to sleep. And most of the time, I'm glad. But sometimes, I really wish that you could stay awake later. Until I realize how amazing it is that you don't wake in the night...ever.  Plus, I'm hoping to work with you this summer to get your bedtime to 7:00. Then we could go out to dinner at 5:30 instead of 5:00. ;)

LovesYour current love(s) are your stuffed animals in your crib. You particularly love you daddy's old teddy bear, Brit. It's so cute to go in to wake you up in the morning, and your cuddling your animals. 

Oh. And you really, really love peek-a-boo. It never gets old. Ever. 

Dislikes. I'm not sure if I'd go as far as to say "dislike", but you definitely don't love other babies. This is something we're working on. I think it's because most of your baby friends are boys, and they are much rougher than you prefer. Because you're a lady. :)

Elderly people. GiGi took you to an estate sale and two elderly people (stopping at different times) bent down to say hello to you. And you burst into tears. GiGi said you seemed quite terrified.

That being said. Sometimes, I feel like your stranger danger is back. You went through a phase a couple months ago, then it sort of went away. And I feel like now you are so completely aware when mom and dad are not around, and you sort of...panic. Luckily, I read on today that 9 months is the peak of stranger danger. So hopefully we're near the end?

Personality. Right now, you want everything we have and want to do everything we do.
 If I'm eating a sandwich, your baby peas will not suffice. You want a sandwich. If I'm writing on a notepad, you take my pen and paper from me. You just think you're so grown up. 

Favorite Playthings. You are with your wooden animal puzzle. I mean true love. And you've also rediscovered your exersaucer. Your Dad. Seriously. You love him a lot. 

Oh my goodness. 
This growing up thing is hard. 
So just stop. 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Week 38: Celebrations of Sorts

Week 38: 05/05/13 - 05/11/13

My first Mother's Day. 
What an honor.  
A blessing. 
To have a day to celebrate being a mom.

By far the best job I've ever had. 
And most rewarding. 

This year's day was extra special.
Because it was my first
And because it was the day you turned 38 weeks old.
The exact number of weeks you were in my belly. 

How incredibly amazing. 
And quite surreal to think about.

This picture was taken my first day of school this year.
38 weeks. 
I never got to do a 38 week bump update. 
Because you decided to come 2 weeks early.

I'd say I prefer this side of 38 weeks a bit more. 
Because I get to snuggle you.
Giggle with you. 
And love on you. 
Whenever I want. 
*And the whole no more morning sickness thing is quite the added bonus. ;)

And now here we are. 
Celebrating 38 of the best weeks of our lives. 
And honoring motherhood.

I woke up on Sunday morning to a Mother's Day Summer Package "from Chunkin".
In it contained some goodies.
Each one labeled. 
Colas for our "Pool Dates".
Coffee for our "Girl Talks"
Cookie cutters for our "Bake Offs". 
And some other funsies.
Your dad...err...I are too sweet!

We of course had a three-generation celebration.
Because not only am I a mama, 
but Grams and Gigi are mamas...
and grandmamas too!
They get *double* the love. 

You were sick this week. 
I guess you're just sticking to what you know.
Like when you were sick on my birthday
Or we finally realized you suffered from colic right around the holidays

But I haven't seen you congested like you were this week.
You had quite the little cough. 
And a hoarse baby is probably the saddest thing I've ever witnessed.
Luckily, it turned out just to be a bad cold.
And you totally rallied.

Now, you are already on the mend!

And although it sure breaks my heart to see you so sick,
I would be lying if I said I didn't enjoy the extra cuddles. 
And the extra, "maaaa-maaaa"s. 
Love it. 
Love you.

Sick or not. 
It was a fabulous Mother's Day. 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Day in the Life: Working Mom Style

A Day in the Life post.
I've seen this done on other blogs before.
And I thought it would be so fun to look back on one day.
I mean.
Because my life is obviously so incredibly interesting.

I've actually started posts like this multiple times.
But life always got in the way.
And the busy-monster took over.
*Surprise. Surprise.*

But now, the school year is starting to wind down.
Less meetings.
Less rigorous projects and assignments.
I've finished all my community service hours for JL.
State assessments are over.
And Lyla is in such a fun, easy stage (a.k.a. still not mobile).

So I finally did it!

I chose a fairly easy school day without any before or after school commitments.
A day where the calendar wasn't haunting me.
And a day where I wasn't feeling pulled in 12 different directions at once.

If you'd like the shortened version, here is a synopsis.
I work a lot.
My day revolves around teaching, pumping, and breastfeeding.
And I usually only see my Chunkin for a little over an hour each night.
{But you better believe I make every second of that hour count.}

So, here it goes.

A Day in My Life: 05-09-13 Lyla 8 1/2 Months Old

5:00 a.m. Gabe's alarm goes off. I'm pretty sure I whimper. Then growl. And instantly regret staying up until 1:30 a.m. chatting about nothing with Gabe last night.

5:40 Finally roll out of bed, stumble into the shower, unload the dryer, peek and see what my sweet hubby packed me for lunch, and get my pump ready.

6:00 Let the dogs out. Feed them. Sienna wasn't obnoxiously begging for her food today, so I decided to give her a little extra.

6:10 Take EmergenC - My lifeblood as a teacher. Gotta fight those nasty germies. 

6:15 Feel the morning butterflies - time to go wake up my Beansie! I love these precious morning greetings. Hehe. Looks like she got in a wrestling match with her stuffed animals. She reaches her little arms out. I happily oblige and scoop her up.

6:20 Nurse the babe, change her diaper, and stand in front of the closet with a blank stare on my face. Don't get me wrong. It's so fun to dress my girly girl. At least on the weekends. However, it's simply one more decision to make for the day. All I can think at the moment..."Why do you have so many clothes? Where the heck are the matches to all your socks? Do these stripes match those polka dots? FOR THE LOVE OF PETE, WHY HASN'T SOMEONE INVENTED BABY UNIFORMS?"

6:45 Pour my cereal with Lyla on my hip, head to the bedroom, put her on the floor to play with her toys. Crap. Where's her crinkle book? I'm already running a little late this morning. This ball and stuffed dolly will have to do.

6:50 Begin my first pumping session of the day while I eat  "organic" cinnamon toast crunch, brush my teeth, and put on my makeup. Ly sings and claps, and shakes her head to the beat of the pump.

7:15 Clean up. Pour milk. Mix milk. Freeze milk. Leave some milk in fridge. Sheesh. I practically need a third degree to figure out all this milk-mixing.

7:20 Put Ly on the bed. Start to get dressed in the outfit I laid out the night before. Ugh. I hate this outfit. I desperately need to go shopping. Why the heck is my entire closet stripes? Seriously. Everything I own...stripes.

I settle for stripes.

7:30 Dogs start barking because GiGi's here to pick up Ly. I run around the house like a lunatic looking for my keys. *a regular occurrence*. Grab my teacher bag, lunch, pump, and water bottle. Throw some diapers in a bag to send to GiGi's, kiss my babe, double-check to make sure I have everything and head out the door.

7:38 Get a wave from Lyla. She loves "bye-bye". Mommy, however, does not.

7:53 I realize I'm going to be late for my 8:00 before-school meeting. Shoot.

8:01 Head down to the library for our staff meeting. Instead of a meeting, we just get instructions for how to pass/fail students in our electronic grade book system. Score! Check my mailbox. Make some copies. Say hi to my teammates.

8:23 My students will be here in 2 minutes. Why is it that every single morning I feel like I never have enough time to prepare for my day?

Savor the calm before the storm.

8:25 Bell rings. Greet my students. Pull one kiddo aside and remind him to never EVER get off the bus at a different bus stop without telling anyone. *He did this last night and it took us 40 minutes to find him.*
Greet some more kiddos. Explain morning work. Answer at least 6 dozen questions:
How many more points do I need to meet my AR goal? 
Did we have homework last night?
Where do I put *said* homework?(I want to answer, "The same spot we've put it the last 164 days this year").
When is the last day of school?
Why do you drink so much water?
Why did you put the wrong date on the board?

9:00 I love not having our tiered reading support this week. Things are much less rushed in the mornings...and one less thing to plan. Instead, I help kiddos on their area and perimeter problems and check to make sure they have sufficient supporting evidence explaining why an assigned force of nature is considered a "friend or foe".

**Sweet. I'm totally stoked that Gabe made iced coffee last night. I really need an extra pick-me-up this morning. Because of the aforementioned late night last night. Yikes.

9:25 Remind kiddos they need their recorders for music. Walk them down.

9:30 Plan time! Check my box. Go to the bathroom. Meet with my teammates for 10 minutes. Make a couple of copies.

9:45 I set up my pump and get to business. Stare at all the grading that needs to be done. I feel like it's taunting me. And the massive mounds of end-of-the-year paperwork on my desk aren't helping either. Oy. I have 35 minutes and must use this time wisely because it's all the time I'll have all day.

Should I plan for next week? Respond to e-mails? Grade papers? Input grades that are due next week? Order supplies for next year? Finish my inventory? Input my benchmark testing data?

Again. I don't do well with too many options.

So, I decide to gather my materials for our reading, math and science lessons for later this afternoon and respond to e-mails.

10:15 Clean up. Put milk in the fridge. How is my plan time over? Feel a sense of panic. Tell myself it will all get done eventually. Grab some more water. Pick up my kiddos.

10:20 I decide last-minute to do a mini Mother's Day writing assignment. After all, we have end-of-the-year reading benchmark testing today. So what the heck? Let's do something fun and easy for our mamas.
I am one now.
And I want a sweet letter from Chunkin when she's in fourth grade.

11:00 Dibels Testing

11:50 Take kids to lunch. Go to the bathroom. Fill water bottle. Start pumping. Get a little caught up on grading.
Boo! I realize that some of my kids didn't do too hot on the probability portion of their math tests yesterday. Makes sense. I felt a little rushed in that lesson. Probably should have spent another day on it. Decide to give it back to my kiddos to correct.

12:12  Scarf down my lunch.

12:20 Pick kiddos up. Another score! It's computer lab day. So, I'm able to sit down and work on inventory and my purchase order for next year in between getting kids logged on. I decide on some storage and desk organization items. Mama is in some serious need of organization for next year's daunting transition to the common core standards.

1:00 Recess duty. Kids fight over who gets out in Four Square. Tell said kids that no one gets to play now.

1:20 Hand out a couple band-aids for a few cuts and bruises from recess.

Break out into Math Workshop. I'm still getting used to this method of teaching. Although it's fast-paced and a little overwhelming, I'm really liking it so far.
Today we're learning how to convert fractions into decimals and percents. I introduce the new math groups for this unit, explain today's math enrichment activity and game, then send the kiddos off to their stations. I meet with each group for 20 minutes.
Man. I could sure use more time with my first group. Fractions are tough! I make a mental note to use more hands-on manipulatives tomorrow.
Holy moly. Group 2 breezed through this lesson. I jot down to plan a more challenging project-type assignment for tomorrow.
*Differentiating lessons to meet the very diverse, individual needs of students is so necessary. And quite mentally and physically exhausting.*
I have to stop 2 or 3 times to remind a few students of "Math Workshop Rules".
Then, I punch a couple conduct cards for inappropriate behavior.

(Fourthgrade-itis is in full effect.
Come to think of it, so is teacher-itis.
Summer can't get here soon enough.)

2:40 Oopsie. Went over into science time. How is it already 2:40?

Review yesterday's lesson on how the earth moves on its axis...yada yada yada. Introduce today's mini-project: Constellation Finders. The kids are really excited to use these tonight - hopefully it's a clear sky.

3:20 Check planners. Pick up the room. Remind students of their homework for this evening.

3:25 Bell rings. Bus duty. Remind one of my students from last year to walk, not run.

3:45 Oh. There's my teammates. Finally some adult interaction. I didn't see them all day. Sad face. I blurt out, "Quick, make a fun face for the blog!"

And this pretty much sums up the response I get to most things I say and do (which often includes me randomly bursting into song and dance while we plan):

3:50 I remind myself that I have to pick up Lyla today. Must stay focused to get out of here early. Quickly organize the benchmark testing data. Input scores. Print charts. Eh. I'll deal with the rest of this tomorrow.

4:00  Prepare tomorrow's morning work, planner, math stations, and science investigation.

4:30 Force myself to leave early today. It's time to go see my babe!

5:15 Get to GiGi's. I'm greeted with that bottom-toothed grin, clapping, and bouncing so hard, she nearly falls over.

 5:20 Nurse the babe.

5:35 Load up Lyla and head home.

6:00 Get home. Lyla starts rubbing her eyes. Boo. I was hoping she'd stay awake a little later tonight since I've barely seen her. :(

6:05 Plop her on the bed to get a little laundry put away.

6:10 Bath time with Chunkin! Bath time is Daddy's job. But Daddy's working late tonight. So, I get to scrubbing the babe. How in the world does Gabe do this? She's so slippery. 

6:17 Throw some diapers in the washing machine.

6:20 Time for last feeding of the day. Eight and a half months, and Sienna still feels so displaced. We love you too, Burt. Promise!

6:40 Say goodnight prayers and smother with smooches. Put Ly down. She starts playing with her teddy bear, Brit.
*Dad will be excited to hear this. Brit was his stuffed bear brought to him from Britain when he was little. He kept sneaking it into Lyla's crib, and I would take it out. Nothing against Brit. He just doesn't match the decor. But he somehow kept mysteriously appearing in the crib. Now, he's just a permanent fixture.

 6:45 Dinner time. Scavenge around. I guess I'll have to settle for leftover veggies, blueberries, and a California Pizza Kitchen pizza. Mmm.

7:00 Clean up the kitchen, put more clothes away, put diapers in the dryer. Ask myself why we do cloth diapers again? Don't get me wrong. I LOVE cloth diapers. Except on laundry day. Which just so happens to be every other day.

7:15  My favorite part of the day: washing bottles and pump parts {insert sarcasm. a lot of it}.

7:30 My Love is home! Sit down for the first time all day. Chat. Catch up. Talk about how much we miss Chunkin and want to wake her up. Decide not to wake her up.

8:30 Respond to personal e-mails. Blog. Pin. Jot down a couple of lesson plan ideas.

9:15 I may have about 45 things on my to-do list. Screaming at me to get done tonight. But I head for bed instead. I've averaged about 4 hours of sleep all week. I'm in desperate need of a good night's rest.

9:30 As I start to drift off, I realize how much I miss Chunkin.

5:00 a.m. Gabe's alarm goes off. And we start the whole routine over again.