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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

celebrations of a 5 year old

this past week was emma's 5th birthday. that's right. she's five. FIVE. where does the time really go? it hits me hard with her because she's my middle child. and as my middle child i feel she honestly does get the bum end of the stick when it comes to attention. so, this monumental event only amplifies the fact that i feel like i'm really missing out on her growth.

{this is my dear, sweet, lovable emma paige}

emma is my strong one. she's going to be a fanTAStic mother one day. she can handle the ups and downs life throws at her better than her brother and sister. all of this is important because she turned 5 years old. and the day before her birthday we were supposed to celebrate her last day at pre-school on TOP of throwing her a kick-butt birthday party at snack-time. but, that was not to be. you see, emma came home on that Monday with a fever. instead of going to school, emma went to the doctor's for that fever. because, you see... it was almost Thanksgiving and i would be damned if I got stuck in an emergency room over the next hectic 5 days.

{so, where was i?}

doctor's office. that's right. my little 5 year old has pneumonia. pneumonia that made her cough non-stop, run a fever, and weeze unbelievably. and pneumonia that made her unable to attend her last day of pre-school. pneumonia that made her unable to hand out her cupcakes and treat bags to all of her friends, thus deeming her the absolute coolest 5 year old in that class on that very day.

fast forward a week.

emma is no longer enrolled at her pre-school, but i was going to be damned if we weren't going to celebrate her birthday there with all of her frends, thus having her as the coolest chick EVER on that very day.

before we left the house, i knew i was going to be an emotional wreck. not because i was so proud of who emma has become over these last 5 years, though i was. not because i was sad to see her to turn 5, though i was. but because i feel she was getting the bum end of the stick. i was pulling her out or pre-school to help us afford the hubbie not working right now.

{you know how sometimes it takes that big huge heaving sobbing cry to feel better? well with what happened 9 weeks just still hasn't fully processed. i had YET to have that big huge heaving sobbing cry.}

she had a crown. a BIG crown. with glitter. lots of glitter. OH, and hearts, too. she was in heaven. princess-girly heaven. she passed out her cupcakes. she passed out her treatbags. she was the coolest freaking kid in class that day and she loved it. and i wept. and i sobbed. and i had to excuse myself. and then i had to endure the stares of 24 precious little faces wondering why emma's mom was crying. and being a downer to the best party of the year. {i just had to throw that in there}

being a mom allows us to feel so many new thing in life. you don't just feel things for yourself. you feel them for others. and by feel, i mean feeeeeeeeeeel. emma was so overwhelmed by everyone so happy to see her that she just kind of stared and smiled. she knew she wouldn't be going to pre-school there anymore, but it didn't fully process until we got in the car and she saw her journal. her pencil box. her nametag. "why is this in the car, mom? it stays in my classroom."

*sobs, i tell ya*

i can't tell you how happy i am to be a mother. it's all that i was sure i knew i wanted in life. but the mommy guilt is a tough thing to get used to. my oldest is 6 and i still haven't figured out how to deal with it. what i have figured out is that if i need a shoulder to cry on, if i need a smooch to feel better, if i need someone to make me laugh...all i have to do is be home. i've got my entire life right there. they are my life. they are what matter.

i'm learning not to sweat the small things. it's hard because you want your children to have the best in life. pre-school was her own world, and one she was proud of. she had her own friends. her own teacher. her own dance-class. for me it was a big thing. it represented a lot of what i wanted for her... a world of her own. a chance to be someone on her own. not living in the shadow of her big brother or little sister. but you know what i have to remember? she is strong. and she will refuse to live in their shadows. and for THAT...i am proud.

{and on a side note... what's worse than a daughter with pneumonia over Thanksgiving? two daughters with pneumonia over Thanksgiving. never ask how much worse it can get... because the Lord is tricky like that sometimes. not that he wanted to show me pain, but he did want to reiterate the fact that i can't control things in life... so why sweat the small things?}

Monday, November 24, 2008

family portraits (or attempts, thereof)

This was the weekend we had our family pictures taken, which obviously means, this is the weekend I would spend hours carefully planning and executing perfect outfits and hair for my entire family, thus sweating for hours on end only to barely get myself ready in time for our appointment.

I love family pictures. I love having a baseline for reference on my children’s growth, year by year. It’s been 2 years since our last family portrait. And OH how I regret not taking Sophie for regular photos over all this time…totally a deer in the headlights as far as smiling went.

Not only was she not smiley… her hair… her long curly hair… her long curly hair that I spent 30 mins getting “perfect” was anything BUT perfect on film. Say it with me folks, S-T-R-I-N-G-Y. *oye* so disappointing. So Sunday we cut it. I got out my scissors and some cheese and crackers and took control of the situation. Much better, only 24 hours too late.

Our family portrait came out mediocre, but getting 3 kids to all smile at the same time in the same direction is damned near impossible. {Unless you take their auntie along to get them rolling in laughter like only an auntie can. Unfortunately I thought of that a little too late.} So, while my portrait isn’t exactly as I pictured it when getting ready that day, I’ll take it. And I won’t go back for another year. But…I still need to get Sophie’s redone. Unfortunately, now when people receive both our family portrait and the kids’ individual shots, her hair will be long in one and short in the other.

But you know, if this is the only problem I had to endure this weekend…
I guess I am awfully lucky.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

we've all got issues

we all have issues. most of mine are likely different than yours. some of mine might be the same, but even when they are the same, they are so vastly different because we live different lives.

i don't like it when friends vent and tell me they should probably not complain to me because of everything i have going on in my own life... that they feel like they're whining.
{note to self: maybe i should get the definition of friend tattooed across my forehead}

i love people. i love helping people. sometimes my "help" gets misinterpreted. sometimes my "help" is more about knowing i did all i could to make someone else's life better or easier than it is about actually helping them. does that make sense?

it means, i'm selfish. so sue me.

it's ironic. this is the year i decided to volunteer more at my kids' schools. to donate more time and money to wonderful charities and research. this is the year i wanted to do more for people. this is also the year my husband lost his job. what a downer!

it's been an eye opening year for me.

i'm finding out i'm still in love with my husband {reference an earlier post}. all this during the most stressful period of our marriage. i'm realizing i'm pretty lucky that during a time like this, our love just seems to grow Grow GROW. i'm finding out that i really do love to craft. i'm figuring out it's ok to want to learn to sew. i'm learning that patience is unbelievably important in our ability to be happy, and it's kind of a nice change of pace. i'm also learning that positive thinking can lead to a more positive way of living....that it will just become that naturally.

i know i was put on this earth to be a mother. i've known that since i was a child. i know i was brought here to be the mother of my three little peas.

{we were meant for each other long before we ever met}

i have learned that i control very little in this life and through positive thinking i am learning to be able to handle the hand i've been dealt. i'm trying to live my life with purpose. purpose. do people realize they have an unselfish purpose in life? a purpose that is unrelated to them being...themselves? a real purpose to this world?

maybe i'll never fully know or understand my full purpose in life. but... i feel as though as long as i am cognizant of the fact that i want there to be purpose and i am driven to make sure i have purpose...i'll just bless the world twice over?! one can only hope.

for now, i'm just happy knowing i can be there to lend an ear to a friend in a time of need.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

positive thinking. nuff said.

sometimes life can get you down.

i know this ALL too well. and sometimes being down is tough to change. and sometimes you don't even want to change it.

i'm really interested in the power of positive thinking these days. you wanna know why?

chris and i are currently undergoing a 7 week love exercise. on day 2, something happened. our task that we answered independently of one another was answered exactly the same.

"think of a good time in your marriage and write about it."

as i was the only one that actually wrote out the assignment, i asked him to go first. all he said was "atlantic" and i started laughing. i couldn't believe it. who would've thought that over these last 8 years we both would've picked our trip to atlantic city playing Indian Poker in the car stuck in awful traffic as that good time in our marriage. that trip took place 5 months into our relationship and it wasn't our most exciting trip we've taken these last 8 years.

positive thinking doesn't just entail thinking these things... it includes talking about these things. and talking about these things leads to more positive thinking.

{like, remember that time i took chris {knowingly} to a gay bar and he was definitely the apple of that one guy's eye?
he didn't even freak out. he just kept drinking his courvoisier or whatever that manly drink was and played it cool.
he did that for me. and i liked it.}

you know what was one of the nicest parts of this exercise? the fact that we talked about it in bed so that the last thing i felt as i started dozing was elation. i was feeling as though we were a team. was feeling though we truly are united in love. in love.

{i'm still in love.}

i have been so caught up in the quick of living my reality that i haven't taken the time to really think about that. when a couple gets so caught up in the life of your children, work, and activities, you can kind of forget that you're also in love...that you're part of a couple. an in-love couple.

not a couple of parents.

not a couple of friends.

a couple in L-O-V-E.

if you're not nuturing that love, what will happen? if you don't take time to smell the miss something. and believe me, this is new to me too. if you recall, just last week i was asking for pointers on how to do this. but i'm finding that with some things in life, if you really want them, it's worth every effort to make it good. and memorable. and meaningful.

so this is where i'm at today. i'm completely excited to talk about tonight's task with...


{not my kids' father. not my friend, chris. not mr. funnyman}


learning lasts a lifetime. i'm getting that. gladly.

"Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be." Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

i got that feelin'....

'tis the season ... to get that feeling.

{that funky feeling}

that christmas is almost here.

ooo yeah.
ooo yeah.

i'm ready. BOY am i ready. i love the holidays, and how convenient that thanksgiving is next week.

{i'm kind of driven by food and the holidays = great meals!}

i'm so inspired this year, thanks to blogs like this, this, and this... i can't wait to see what i'm capable of this year. of course, don't hold it against me if my capability isn't put to full use. i tend to be ambitious at heart but then reality has a way of slapping me in the face sometimes.

and that's ok. because my reality is kind of nice.

a boy.

two girls.

and a man. {hubba hubba}

and let's not forget...
much love.

it's about love, afterall. you know... life. what is life without it? i'm lucky to be SURROUNDED by it day in and day out. in fact, chris and i are actually beginning a great "love exercise" {get your mind out of the gutter, folks}....

for 7 weeks we're working on training our minds to think positively. what, you ask, is this for? let me show you...


marriage is work. you can't deny that, and if you try to, you're fooling yourself. it's something that you have to keep at, to make it wonderful, to make it meaningful.

everyday we are given a thought. we have to think the thought as much as possible for the entire day. during the day we have to write down a certain task that accompanies that thought and at the end of the day we share it with our partner.


thought: i am genuinely fond of my partner.

task: list one characteristic you find endearing or lovable about your partner

this continues five days a week for seven days a week. at the end the hope is that positive thinking becomes second nature, as does the appreciation for your marriage and what you have together. it's about enriching your marriage.

i hope this christmas is our best yet. not because of materialistic things. because we are strong. together. i hope our marital growth this year makes for the most meaningful celebration ever. together. i'm excited about this more than the meals this year. {can you believe THAT?} but i am. love is grand...and i'm learning it's also patient. and kind. and not boastful. pure love is unbelievably innocent. it's a pretty nice thing to have while i'm floating on cloud 9 ...

'tis the season, don'tcha know!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

a love for lists

i'm an "organizer" {meaning, i love lists, and i love attempting to keep up with them and BEING organized, but sometimes life happens and organization kind of falls flat on it's face around here}

i just came across a very useful link from The Nest...

it includes several useful and downloadable household worksheets (tips, checklists, and planners).

{now, if only my printer would work...}

it happened

last night something happened.

and i haven't had it happen in awhile.

last night i fell in love.
with someone new.

love is grand, don't you think?

my new love breaks down your walls with one single smile. my new love melts your heart by looking in your eyes with that trusting gaze. the kind of trust that is built strong, that cannot be matched.

when you find someone that can make your heart sing, isn't it great to yell it from the rooftops?


this is addison naomi
and i could



Thursday, November 13, 2008

rain rain go away....

{even though i would be apt to enjoy you if i was at home...

curled up by a fire under...

a cozy blanket with a cup of hot chocolate}

i have a desk with an awesome window. it's huge. and the view...wowzahs. pretty nice. but on days like today, it's just downright sad. i'd love to be home curled up with my beau. i hear he just bought some pork... i can't wait to see what dinner time will bring tonight! {i'm pretty sure i'm driven in life by food.}

i live to eat. i LOVE food. i am kiiiiiiiiiind of a picky eater, but when i find what i like, i tend not to stray from it or get bored by it two nights in a row. i'm the type of person that buys the same exact brand and variety of spaghetti sauce and will never change. my hubbie, on the other hand, loves to try new things. *EEK* that stresses me out. same thing with BBQ sauce {we go through that faster than ketchup}... what's wrong with using something you've tried and really like...FOREVER???

but that's ok. because marriage is about compromise. so we do that.

as i sit here looking out of my window, i wonder what my kids are doing at school, pre-school, and daycare. i wonder if they're tired, taking a rest, or taking a nap. lord only knows that this weather brings those feelings on. i'm sitting here trying to fight it. i hear the view out our back window is quite the doozy...those leaves I blogged about here are all falling down today. good googly moogly. but i also hear it's a beautiful sight. hopefully as beautiful as my pork-filled dinner.

who am i kiddin'?

i KNOW i'm driven by chow.
and i'm ok with that.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


I think I smelled some of these today....

{as in...i actually took time to SMELL them}

and i may have even made a little of this...

proud of me?

i'm learning.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


i'm a doer. some of you may be familiar with that. so, in being a "doer" i'm also kiiiiiiind of a type-A personality. i wouldn't go as far as to say that it's "my way or the highway...." but i'm really not a "mosier"...I don't mosey. and if you're near me, together, we will not mosey.

so.................................i have a question
how to do you learn to stop and smell the roses? to take that sunday drive? to mosey through the gardens? i've never done this before but i think that without learning how to do this, i'm missing out on a lot of life and making some current situations more stressful than they need to be.

here's a little story ...

when i was 7 months pregnant with sophie we took a trip to disney world with the two big kids (who were 2 and 3, at the time). before my last child was to arrive i needed a last family vacation with my two oldest children. maybe it was mommy guilt or maybe it was wanting those last set of memories before the new addition. i'm a picture loving person...i am nothing without my camera. on day 2 of our trip we went to MGM studios. i couldn't find my camera anywhere. i remember feeling ruined. how was i going to have those memories? i felt as though the trip to the park was over before it started. and then, i experienced something i don't think i've felt before as a parent. i was living IN the moment versus trying to capture it. LIVING. it brought tears to me eyes. all of the sudden i was a PART of those memories. it was upsetting. all the moments i had missed because i was trying to capture them on film.

i've tried harder to live in the moment these days, but i'm not going to is a difficult task. maybe my problem isn't moseying...per se...but making lemonade out of lemons? we have a lot going on, there is no sugarcoating that fact. we're going through highs and lows constantly, but is it going to be easier to get through this by staying positive and by smelling the roses or fixing this quickly and being able to move on and not worry about things? i've tried to let things flow on their own schedule and four weeks into it, i'm kind of over it. but have i just not found the right recipe for my lemonade? or have i mosied long enough? all of these questions and nobody to answer them. except, of course, the big Guy upstairs. how have i missed hearing his answer? because Lord knows, I've been asking him. daily. more than daily. i'll keep my ear on the lookout...(hear-out? it is my ear, afterall, not my eye...)

in the meantime, i've got to go google 'lemonade.'

Monday, November 10, 2008

movie night at the hamollo....

hamollo, apollo...potatoes, poTAHtoes... it was movie night at the hamako abode. "SKIDOOSH!" kung fu panda...popcorn...three excited peas...what could've made it better?

three peas that stayed seated for the entire movie. that's what.

EVERYONE was kung fu fighting. that song is a catchy one, yeah?


Saturday, November 8, 2008

ahhhhhh. fall. SWEET fall.

today i relaxed. and then i did the opposite of relax. i crafted with the chillens. it all started with this swanky "me" board i have to send into preschool with emma {see, it's her birthday in 18 short days}...
isn't it nifty?

then, the kids started getting ants in their pants. outdoors. so, off we went, on a hunt for beautiful leaves. see, our backyard may be a mere 1500 square feet, but it houses a heckuva lot of leaves.
these are the leaves that still have to fall.

times 10.

there are 10 other fully grown LEAFY trees in our backyard... or let me rephrase that... there are 10 other fully grown LEAFY tress that are NEAR our backyard and thereby drop their autumny goodness inside our parameter of responsibility.

emma found a nice one that looks like a kitty cat.

sophie found a nice "lellow an' o'ge" one...
ethan found one he thought was perfect. "that's not mold! it's polka dots!"

initially i thought we'd collect a bowl full of these suckers and make wreathes for our windows. but you know what? i was feeling a little more ambitious than just a wreath project. we're going full-on turkey goodness, folks! clear the way... here comes a 3 hour craft project that only one of my kids had the patience to complete.

but we like 'em A-OK. fun times in the hamako house.


Friday, November 7, 2008

it's frideeeeeee!

i cannot WAIT to enjoy the weekend. regardless of the fact that i have reports to do (stinking TPS lifestyle) i think i will be able to relax a bit. wow. it's going to be like christmas! without presents, anticipation, or snow.

{who am i kiddin'? when is the last time we had snow here on Christmas?}

happy frideeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

{4 generations of Enterline blood here... this was a GOOD day}

{note: it was not a friday but it sure felt heavenly}

Thursday, November 6, 2008

sick babies are sad babies and make for sad mommies. and aunties.

my beautiful neice is sick.

she has a bacterial infection in her little knee.
her tiny little knee.
bacteria is fast growing, spreading, and scary.
we will never know how this bacteria got down into her knee. right now we are waiting for an mri to help us know how deep this bacteria has gone... is it in the bone? is it in her growth plate? she's only 1 year old.

my sister-in-law is one of the best people i know.
boy do i love her. she's currently pregnant with her third pea and is on modified bedrest. well, doesn't this just throw a crick into things? can't pick up your baby?

yeah right.

can't stand for a long period of time?

double yeah right.

i just worry. i worry about all of them. dad is a GREAT dad, but also a worrysome dad. i hope he's ok.
isn't it hard to hold a wee one down while they get an iv jacked into their arm? isn't it hard to tell a hungry baby signing for food, water, and milk that they cannot have it for another 8 hours until after they get "pictures" taken? my heart breaks for all of them. as parents, it is inevitable that we go through these kinds of things with our children. but it doesn't mean it's easy. i've gone through it with each of my kids and i know it's not something i want to relive. i'll be thinking of all of them today. hopefully the balloons i sent will make her feel a little better. i just hope she's not afraid of balloons. EEK!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

exercise yer right. vote.

today is election day. yes. i voted. of course i voted. it's a monumental day in our nation's HISTORY. i voted for ... well ... that's not really relavant because this post is more about what i want to see for this nation, not who i voted for.

i want a nation that is safe. for me. for my children. i want a nation that is financially stable in a way that doesn't just get us out of THIS jam, but out of many jams-to-come. i want to live in a nation where freedom reigns in a glorious way. not just because it's in the Constitution, but because people RECOGNIZE it as something special and something we have to treat with respect. FREEDOM doesn't come cheap. FREEDOM doesn't come easy. FREEDOM takes work. hard work. from all who want it.

my fear is that i live in a nation consumed by entitlement versus ethics.
"what can the country do for me" rather than "what can i do for my country." this IS a great nation. it can only remain so if we work at it. it can all slip away at the drop of a hat. instantaneously it can be gone. i work hard so that we can have a great life. so that my little kids can join Babe Ruth baseball, Flag Football, Dance classes, Swim lessons, Tumbling classes.... i work hard so i can pay my bills. i don't WANT to depend on someone else to make that happen for me. it is my duty as a mother, as a wife, as a citizen of this country to work, provide, enrich, and stimulate my country in many ways.

my fear with this election is that we will further emphasize entitlement. that expectations of how the government will take care of us grows exponentially to the point where all we can do is fail. where riots are rampant. where we make a hole so deep we can't seem to get out of it on our own. where the strongest country in the world has to start relying on help from other countries. THAT is a scary thought. i work hard. but i don't work hard so that other people don't have to (besides my children).

i don't work hard so that people can exercise their right to NOT work hard... where are the ethics in that? oh. right. it's entitlement. i will pay my taxes and do my part, because that's what ethical people do. but in the end, it's interesting to see record breaking numbers at the polls this year and the demographics of these new voters. i do blame our schools for not properly teaching business and civics (combined) to ALL students at some point before graduating high school. it could be a class titled "Reality of American Living "... and i think it should be mandatory. we learn best through living, don't we? unfortunately, people get stars in their eyes and get blinded by those stars. or maybe the stars are all they ever knew. but that says something, doesn't it?

i'm a lil' bit scurrrrred. not just for myself or my children. for the American way.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween. Such a treat, don’t you think? The ability to dress up, disguise oneself, and prance around in a jovial state all in the name of...candy. Glorious candy. Gobs and gobs of candy. We had 9 adults and 13 kids gather at our house to celebrate together. Boy, I really love getting together with people I LIKE. Funny people. Carefree people. Supportive people. It was a good time.

Sophie was a chicken (*BAWK BAWK*)

Emma was a princess butterfly

Ethan was Ben 10.

We had a shark, a fish, a Nemo, a transformer, a cheerleader, double trouble, Captain Feathersword, and even Harry Potter, himself, join in the fun of trick-or-treating that night.

These girls love each other. They will be friends for life.
Aidan. cutest shark ever. or dolphin, depending on your prescription.

Our neighborhood doesn’t have sidewalks or street lights. We don’t have speed bumps or anything to help with child safety on this crazy holiday. BUT, we did have yours truly that was more than happy and vocal about yelling at the speeding cars traveling through our neighborhood to dodge traffic on the busier surrounding major roads. If only there were more me’s on every street. What neighborhood doesn’t have sidewalks and street lights? Man. First time buyers learn a lot of lessons through that big purchase. I know I have.

Saturday we had a bit more of a relaxing day. The girls played out in the leaves. College football was on the big screen. Grandpa was over for a visit. And the coffee was enjoyed all morning long. After the girls’ naps it was time to pack up the kids to a trip to Grandma’s so Mom and Dad could have a date night. First date night in months. Wow. I missed date night. In fact, I didn’t realize how MUCH I had missed it. I will always be a mom first in life. But it is so nice to be a wife sometimes too. (Separately from Mommy time, of course.)

Sunday Chris and I slept in, watched a movie (Leatherheads) in bed (uninterrupted!), and enjoyed our coffee before picking up the kids. After retrieving our bloodline we went to a park downtown and then to Carl’s ice cream (because they close for the winter in exactly 20 days from today)… heaven on earth.

Daylight savings time made for an early night last night…which I welcomed with open arms. It felt soooo good. Of course, it led itself to an early morning today, but that was ok. I had coffee with my 4 year old. Of course, she only drank Sunny D, but it was awfully nice to have that moment with her first thing this morning. After all, only 23 more days until she turns 5. These are days I will never get back. That’s why it’s important to live ‘em up while you can, which is what I fully intend on doing.

sophie. at the park. in the sunshine.

emma. after her hike up the big hill.

ethan. making his mom happy by smiling for the camera.

sophie. wanting to get on the merry-go-round with the big kids. not. going. to. happen.

carl's. before the 2008 season ends.

my boy.

quite the pair.

loving life.

not loving life. daddy's clean-up duty cleaned up too much.

emma definitely has learned that it's best to learn how to do clean-up duty on your own.

more for you.

all is right in the world again.

sophie's lil chucks. her favorite possession of late. can you blame her?