Monday, December 31, 2012

The end of the year..............

There are only 3 hours left in the year 2012.  This has been quite the year.  I try at the end of every year to reflect on the year and pick out some highlights and low lights. There have been many of each this year.  I also have come to the realization that I have so much work to do on my own.

Some highlights for us Curtis':

Madison--- turned 9, competed for the first time in dance, went away to New York this summer exclusively for intense dance training, got offered her first solo , starting the 4th grade, had her first sleep over in the new house.....

Myles---turned 3, started tap dancing, found his first "best"friend, experienced Christmas for what I would consider the 1st REAL time, started going to church more, became potty trained,

Mayci--- turned 1, started walking, saying first words, had her first New Years, Easter, Memorial Day, Valentine's day, and 4th of July,  becoming so much more of an individual and claiming her stubborness personality(Lord help us, lol)

Damian --- quite the homeowner(getting pretty good at yard work and home fixing, has been on several CD's that came out this year, more private teaching opportunities, celebrating 5 yr wedding anniversary

Michelle--- promotion at work, reconciling a long held grudge(no one said forgiveness is easy), celebrating 5 year wedding anniversary

Unfortunately---- among with these highlights, we have seen some loss this year as well.  This past summer a very good coworker/friend lost her 18 year old son to a freak accident.  I didn't think that my heart could hurt the way it did at that time.  I shed many a tear for this young child and his grieving family.  I watched a mom show so much strength as she buried her son only a month before she should have been sending him off to college.  This woman and her sister were the ones who comforted me as I walked towards their son's/nephew's body in a casket to say my goodbyes.  I can not even imagine how they found it in themselves to that.

And as if that wasn't enough, my husband's good friend lost a child during the horrific events that took place at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown CT.  OH heart hurt yet again as I stood next to my husband stricken with his grief.  I had never seen him that way and once again cannot imagine how the family of this young child or any of the grieving families must have felt and were able to cope.  I asked myself on more than one occasion, what if that were me and my family...........................

This made me think, as the year is coming to close.  How much I truly take for granted.  How many mornings I leave the house upset with one of my children, leaving them with a frown and not a smile.  How I am so quick to speak prior to thinking and how spoiled I am!!  I am aware so much more now of my blessings, and while I feel guilty for thinking at times, "Thank goodness it wasn't my child."  I now know that it is okay to grateful and that I should be grateful for all that I have and because of that, treat my family as so!!

As we end this year and enter a new year...I pray for all who have lost someone over the past 365 days and before, I pray for their healing, their strength, the ability to smile again.  I also pray for my family and my blessings!  I pray to the Lord that I will be more aware of all that I have and will learn to use this awareness to shine a light unto others and to show those around how truly grateful, honored, and blessed I am for each and every one of them.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The thoughtful thirties

Monday, November 26

I turned 30 today.  Remember back when you were younger and you would begin the countdown to your birthday about 2 month out? too.  But while I talked about my birthday, there wasn't an eagerness or excitement about.  No fancy countdown written on the calendar.  It was really just casual conversation.

But with all that said......I'm not one of those people that gets sad when they think about getting older.  In fact, turning 30 was huge for me.  I now feel like I am "real" grownup---whatever that term really means.  I have 3 fascinating kids, I'm married, we own a home, my family is happy and healthy, and...while I would not like to think that I am in my career, I do have a decent job that definitely helps pay the bills.  I guess it could be worse right?  And maybe I will be a little like wine and only get better with age.

Since it was on a Monday I was up in the morning to get ready for work and get Madison off to school(well, she gets herself off to school-but it sounds really good when I write it like that )  My ultimate goal was to get up a half hour earlier than usual so I could start my Jillian Michaels workout tape...but nope--that didn't happen!  Anyway--it was work, Madison's dance, and school for me.  I had decided to make cupcakes for my birthday because I sort of feel like everyone deserves cake on their special day.

To make a long story short---it was a pretty good day--one of the best ones that I have had in a while.  Work was not too stressful, everything worked out in getting Madison to dance since I had to stay a little longer at work, I was able to enjoy some quality time with a friend and do some shopping, giggling, acting silly, and catching up before class.  Just an all around nice day.

And when I got home form class at 10:30p I was greeted by Abby, Ted, and Myles (Madison and Mayci were already asleep)....there was a cake, some simple gifts, the Happy Birthday song, and blowing out of some candles.  Shortly after..Damian came home from a long day at work and rehearsal and the rest of us fell asleep.

I am so grateful to have made it to 30 years old.  What a precious gift!  These past several years I have seen several young people pass away due to the cruelty of others and unforeseen "freak" accidents...I can only sit and be thankful that I am surrounded  by those who love me and that I have been given yet another chance at another year of life.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

3 decades, randoms, and a few pics

Not exactly sure why I even titled this post that...but it could possibly be because tomorrow is my 30th birthday!! WOAH!!!  30?!?!?!  So cool!!  I always wanted to be 30.  I mean like even when I was only 20 and 21...I thought 30 would be such a "real grown up" I guess that means that as of tomorrow, I am officially a grown up!    WOOOOO HOOO!!

But anyway....the family survived Thanksgiving and is eagerly awaiting Christmas....well at least the kids are.  I always seem to struggle the most around the holidays.  When everyone else seems to be super happy and full of holiday cheer, I am  more closed off and to myself...but I manage to pull through like always.

I do have to say, with a sort of bragging tone, I am almost completely done with my Christmas shopping.  Thank goodness for the Internet and online shopping,  I have been doing several online purchases and always wait until they have some sort of "Free Shipping" deal..because I mean..then it is even more worth it.  Not to mention that I signed up to Ebates which has been a godsend.  I should actually be receiving my first check from several purchases within the next week.  I just got my sign on gift card to Target yesterday, which so completely made my day!

The kids had gone to get there pictures taken about 2 weeks ago and those have finally come in, minus one piece that I am still waiting for.  I will include some of them with this post, but will not be including the pics that are going on our Christmas Card this year.  I have also decided to write a Christmas Letter this year to include with our cards this year and I am super excited for that!!

It's the Sunday after Thanksgiving and our house is completely decorated for Christmas.  We chose to do 2 trees this year.  One for the living room which is strictly for decoration. And I decorated it to match the furniture that we already have in that room. (who do I think I am...Martha Stewart--hahahahah...absolutely not!! )  And the other is in the playroom that the kids got to decorate and that is the one that the gifts will go under on Christmas Eve.  Decorating for Christmas has really boosted my spirits quite a bit already and I am hoping that I can remain this way for the rest of the year and going forward.

We return to school and work after 4 days off...sort of a bummer and Madison has been complaining for the entire day about it, but hey, it is what it is.  I am just going to look forward to Christmas Eve...because as soon as I get off from work I don't go back for a full 7 days ...YIPEE!!!!!

Kids update:  Let's see...not too much exciting to report.  Madison goes back to the orthopedic doctor in another week and half to check the status of her ankle, Mayci has been continuously trying to do everything Myles is doing(that includes trying to jump off the couch only to land face first on the hard couch) and Mr Myles...well he still thinks he is one super hero after the next, but has been very excited about Christmas since we put the trees up on Friday......

Please enjoy a sneak peek of some of the pics that the kids got done 2 weeks ago!!...........

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Just some pics to enjoy

Just wanted to share a few pics from the past 2-3 months since they have just been sitting in the memory card of my camera FOREVER!!!  Hope you enjoy!!

This first little group is of a Truth Revolutions Gig that the kids and I attended to support TRR and Damian, Zaccai, and Luques:

Just some more randoms................

This was Madison trying to do a creepy clown make up look!!

And here she is with the candy we were handing out for Halloween

Here are a few of Damian, Abby, Myles, and Mayci at the little kids swimming lessons.  Abby was kind enough to get in the water on this day because I was attending a Mary Kay meeting!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Starting over..............................again! I go again!  I am not even going to begin with the lame excuses about why I haven't written.  I'll just jump right in.  I lost my motivation for a while.  Things were busy, I was overwhelmed, and because of that I gave up.  It's a really bad trait that I have.  Giving up with things get a little rough.  But I am working on that.

Did I ever mention how I love the first of the month.  Any month.  It always feels like a new beginning for me. A second chance.  Permission to just start over.  So that is what I am going to do.  I am hoping to really get into writing at least every other day, but I make no promises.  I feel like all the time I sit staring at the computer screen can be put to better use sometimes.  ( I am sure that some other people might even agree with me)

So, since November is my birthday month, I figured this was a great time to start.  Tomorrow I will post some pictures from over the past couple of months to catch everyone up and give me a a reason to clean up my memory card in my camera.

Madison, Myles, and Mayci have been doing great.  i think they are all starting to come down with colds, but other than that, they have been well.

Madison has been having trouble with her ankle for quite sometime.  I finally brought her in to see an orthopedic doctor since her xray came up normal and it seems that the tendons are separating form the bone.  This seems very common and causes a lot of discomfort.  She is trying tout a boot to wear for 4 weeks and then will be going back for an evaluation.  So for the time being, we have been taking a break from dance.  I say we because I have truly enjoyed the break from driving back and forth.  She does go on certain days so that she doesn' miss ou too much, but has also been taking entire days off also.

Mayci has finally gotten some teeth.  She is a little behind at 15 months, but the doctor told us not to worry....and sure enough---her bottom 2 teeth have arrived. Tomorrow when I post pics, I will be sure to include one of her new "chompers"

Myles is still enjoying life being Spiderman.  He has been working on his letters and spelling his name...I am hoping to get him into preschool readiness or day care by the middle of next year. Just have to get a few ducks in line!!

Damian's schedule has begun to pick back up now that the school year has started.  He has a full schedule of students, a couple of private lessons, and of course lots of rehearsals and gigs keeping him busy and fulfilled.  As far as Hip Hop producing has been going, he is working on another album and I am hoping to get a little more involved in this area of his music....  Oh and I don't want to forget...if you are looking to check out some new music...check out the CD, "Conquistador", Ed Byrne's Latin Jazz evolution.  Damian plays on this CD and it was released a a little earlier in the year.

I hope that everyones fall has started off great and that everyone made out okay from Hurricane Sandy..Until then.....


Friday, August 17, 2012

Dont worry---we are alive!!

WOWSER!!!!  The past month and a half has gone by so incredibly fast.  Between work, dance, gigs, chasing after the kids, trying to get the small car fixed, a death of someone young, the birth of a friend's baby, finally getting some stuff done around the house, reuniting with an old buddy celebrating a 1ST, and planning a small getaway for our five year anniversary,--------------Time has FLOWN BY!!!  PS----Did Imention that at the beginning of June we cancelled our cable!!!!   What a positive decision.....We are surviving quite well without it..

I will just catch up with a few quick things and then will add in some pics....too much to try to catch up on, but trust me-----life is good!!!

Hmmmmmm......lets see----Madison took 5 weeks of dance this summer.  She has just finished her 5th week and will be starting competition practices this upcoming week.  She was afforded that special opportunity of spending 5 days in NY for an intense dance camp/workshop.  This has changed her so much.  She is more disciplined and focused in the world of dance.  Thank God for her dance teachers Mrs. Liz and Mrs. Christine.  She has misplaced her camera :(, but as soon as it is found, I will be helping her upload pics and will post them, with her permission!!  She also had one more 1stthis summer.  She was in her first play ever....she was Jiminy Cricket in the Town of Windsor's production of a comedic musical called, "The Ever After."  I am so proud!!  She also had her 9th birthday at the end of June....we kept it real simple this year--just a couple of girls over for a make your own sundae bar.....

Myles is still in his spiderman phase.  Sometimes I allow it to frustrate me, but I have been working on being more patient with him and trying to understand his feelings.  He is a kid and I strongly believe that kids should be allowed to be children .... so, needless to say, if you catch us out, you may most likely see me with 2 girls and a Spiderman!!  This September Myles will be starting a dance class.  Damian and I have an agreement---he says no ballet unless Myles is playing football, so he will be taking a tap class and hopefully some tumbling in there as well.

Mayci turned 1 on the 27th of July!!!!!!  I officially have no more babies.  It is sort of bittersweet for me, especially when I think about how I will NEVER give birth again!!!! She is still full of gums and no teeth, but the pediatrician said we don't need to be worried about that quite yet.  She is pretty much exclusively walking now..which has it ups and downs.. :) .  And what a BIG girl she is...weighing a whopping 20 lbs 6oz.....Oh how I miss her new baby smell though!!

This weekend (August 3-5) Damian and I are celebrating our 5th anniversary!  Money has been tight with Damian working less over the summer,, but we still managed a last minute getaway for just the two of us.  We haven't done this in years.  I will post pics in a later post.  Please enjoy the pics from over the last month>>>>

Madison getting her birthday cake from Grandma Abby...and as always, she shares her moment with Myles and Mayci

The 4th of July sign in the driveway that Madison and Gianna designed.. car is finally being picked up to go to the garage in preparation of being nursed back to life...

Ummmmmm...Mayci--that is your birthday cake so you better start smiling....

Happy 1ST birthday Mayci, Happy acting debut Madison, and happy "we didn't want to leave you left out" Myles!!

I hope that everyone has been having a FABULOUS SUMMER!!!!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The BIG 3-4!!!!!!

June 11, 2012

Today was Damian's 34th birthday.  Monday birthdays aren't the greatest, but hey.....a birthday is a birthday right?  Everyone was very tired from spending the whole day at Madison's dance recital the day before, so I went off to work and the 3 kids stayed home to spend some time with Daddy.  I allowed Madison to stay home from school because she was exhausted and she has done so well this past year in the 3rd grade....she deserves it.

Unfortunately, by the time I got home from work, Damian had already left work, so I picked Mayci up from Ted and Abby's, grabbed some groceries, and raced home to make Damian his cake! Then I rushed back to get the other 2 and get home in time to decorate the cake and have it ready for him(and no, it's not REALLY decorated, but at least I wrote on it) He was hoping to be home at  a decent hour so the kids and I could do the whole, sing Happy Birthday and blow out candles, thing for him.

Well, by 10pm everyone was in bed and I was feeling pretty tired, so off to bed I went as well.  I still don't know what time Damian got in, but when I woke up Tuesday to get ready for work...he was in a VERY DEEP sleep.

Clearly I need to hurry up and sign up for the Wilton Cake Decorating classes that I keep talking about!! lol

June 12, 2012

During my lunch break, I logged on to facebook and to my surprise and embarrassment, I saw that Damian had posted a picture of his cake for all to see.  I was sort of happy that he felt it was special enough to post, but pretty embarrassed because it definitely was not the prettiest cake!!!

Thankfully on Tuesday he came home from 45 minutes between work and a rehearsal so we could sing happy birthday, blow out candles, and cut the cake.  Ia m not sure of the kids were more excited to spend a little more time with Daddy or to be able to eat the cake that had been staring at them for the past 24 hours!!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

So, I know it is only Wednesday, but this week is really not going that great for me. I think that it is a mild case of feeling sorry for myself and it is really starting to take a toll on me.

But onto bigger and brighter things.....amidst all of this gloomy weather that has been upon us.

Madison's dance recital was this weekend.  This marks the end of the dance season for most.  But, for Madison, it just marks a small break.  She gets about 3 weeks off and then picks back up at the end of June for the Summer Session.  And let me tell you.....I think she may have found her passion.  Dance isn't just a hobby or an extracurricular activity for her. Is truly seems like something more.....and it probably helps that she is really getting better and better at it!  This recital, she danced in 5 being the competition number.  She had a few minor mishaps, but smiled through them all.  I was incredibly proud.  This was the first year that I did not have another kid with me, so it was way less hectic for me when she needed help with costume and hair changes.

But some of those parents, wow----we were in the dressing room and parents were getting all worked up if someone was in the way and their child was going to be rushing in to do a costume change, they would yell at the other kids and things like that.  I do have a sort of "dance mom" mentality, int hat I sometimes take it kind of serious.  But I try not to even let that show to Madison, because I know it's not life and death.  It also surprises me at how the parents need to be told to watch their little kids so they are not disruptive or getting into things like crawling underneath the table the the photographers video camera is on and shaking it---(I'm just putting it out there!!...)

And I must give a quick shout out to my mother...she is AWESOME( I use that word in hopes that she is actually reading this--she doesn't like the word AWESOME for some unknown reason) :)  She comes every year and sits through the ENTIRE performance with me and never complains.  And for those of you that have attended a dance recital, you can understand what a struggle that can be sometimes.

Here are my tired kids after the dance recital on Sunday!  Well, clearly only Madison is tired and the other two are ready to go!! :)  I was going to put the pic of Damian that I took up also, but her looked so tired in it, I changed my mind!!!
So enough of my bragging about Madison.  Ia m so bad about that.  I am always bragging about my kids...I am probably so annoying to other people....but oh well!!

Mayci has been trying to stand on her own more and more.  Every day I think she manages to stand a little bit longer each day.  She has yet to take even a step, but that's okay...I don't mind if she wants to stay a baby for a little bit longer--especially since she is my last one.

Myles, or should I say, Peter Parker-since that is who he is calling himself these day, has been asking me a lot about school and homework.  Abby just bought him some "workbooks" and "homework" and I have been trying to help him with something daily.  poor thing though..he gets so frustrated when he makes s mistake.  So really our main goal is helping to realize that it is okay to make a mistake and he needs to learn to take a deep breath and try again.  Awww man--I think I need to practice what I preach.

I'm praying that the rest of my week runs a little smoother!!

Sunday, June 10, 2012


Yuck!!  I am not a huge fan of the rainy weather and so when that is what we had for most of the week...I was not a happy camper!

I am so tired today, so I am probably going to be telling you a bunch of randomness and I apologize ahead of time.  This week has been the beginning of a very "crafty" week for me.  Let me start of by saying, I am by NO MEANS a crafty person. I was the kid in art that was always told, "good effort" and my stuff was always the last to be displayed.  In fact, I am pretty sure it was only displayed because if they were showing off the entire class's projects, my feelings may have been hurt if mine was left out.  I mean come on--- you know the bottles that the teachers used to have you wrap different colored yarn around with glue?  Well mine......well I couldn't even get that right!!

But I digress--- I have been feeling very crafty lately.  I have been going on to do it yourself websites and looking things up on You Tube for ideas.  I am even going to attempt to look at that Pinterest thing.  Hopefully this is another start to something new!!

So, off to home depot I went-- I have picked out the swatches for paint colors that I want to use in Myles room and for his dresser and the bathroom.  Now it's just a matter of getting started.  And I am hoping that will be during this up coming week because dance will have died down for a little and that definitely keeps me the most busy.  I AM SO  EXCITED!!!

Some random pics from the week....

Hey, stop taking my picture and start feeding me!!

I am Captain America.........Look at my homemade shield that my big sister helped me with

Madison's train ticket from her field trip to Essex

The pile of socks that I have been struggling to actually match up!

Yummmmmmm...this sock tastes SOOOO good.............Umm, I hope it's clean

Madison's artwork that she stitched----the art teacher took a pic and sent it home because it is being displayed at LP Wilson Center for the summer...see the letter written below!!

Myles has been battling strep throat this week, so it was a little rough earlier in the week.  But now the amoxicillin has kicked in, so he is feeling MUCH better---good for him, not so good for the cleanliness of my house!

Mayci is really trying to stand on her own.  She is letting go of things more and more, and I think she will eb accomplishing it soon enough. SHe is now following her brothers footsteps by getting into the cabinets and pulling out all of my plastic containers onto the kitchen floor!! UUGGHH---if she wasn't so cute........... :)

Madison is in dance recital mode right now!!.....we had dress rehearsal yesterday and besides a few minor glitches, I think it went well!  Madison was a little sad that one of her teachers told her that she needed to dance "harder", but said she knows she will do great for recital!  I can't wait....Recital is in a couple of hours and I absolutely LOVE watching Miss Madison makes my eyes water every time.  This is her 5th year dancing, so she will be walking home with a trophy today.  I will try to sneak some pictures and post them later.....

Well I better finish getting these kids ready....I hope everyone has a SENSATIONAL Sunday!!!