Wednesday, April 15, 2015

So Many Things...So Little Time!

I worked some crazy-ass hours last week. I worked 50 hours during the week (M-F) and then topped it off with 9 more hours on the weekend. This might be nothing for a law firm attorney. But it's a heck of a lot for THIS government lawyer!

The reason for all the work was a hearing in an important case. Me, representing my client, against a local business. I showed up at the hearing to a standing-room only courtroom, packed to the brim with my bosses, a local law maker, and 70+ firearm enthusiasts. I took deep breaths, refused to look behind me at all the people, and made my case before the judge.

While this was a nerve-wracking and challenging experience, I'm amazed at how not-so-scary-I-might-pass-out it was. My recent federal trials have really acclimated me to the courtroom. Comparing the attorney I was last year to the attorney I am now, it's really night and day. The funny thing is, while I felt confident and almost eloquent in the hearing, the second I walked out of the courthouse, I converted back to the awkwardly inept social speaker of my normal self. Our office had a meet and greet with local elected officials and all we had to do was go around the table and say a little about myself and I totally bombed it! Ugh! Maybe I had used up all my eloquence for the day?

This past week involved so many intense emotions. On one particular day, I was having a fantastic day as a mom and an attorney. I felt transcendentally happy and successful in all aspects of my life. I drove to work with my favorite song blasting on the radio after I had just killed the entire morning with mommy excellence- I made pancakes, from scratch; I dressed all the children; we laughed and joked as we got out the door; there were no tears or tantrums. I sat in my work parking lot waiting for the song to end, rocking out and banging my head against the air. I was, a million times over, a rockstar.

Just a typical crazy morning

The very next day Ryan was a total nightmare, I was exhausted, and Jon was fussy. This was NOT a good combo. I may have thrown a chair against the floor (while the children were all safe in their rooms screaming or crying over something). I was the embodiment of Mommy Hulk. It was not a pleasant thing, for anyone.

This weekend, emotions mostly evened out and we celebrated Ryan's third birthday. I cannot believe this guy is three. He is sweet and hilarious and a demon all at the same time.

Birthday cinnamon rolls

Today Ryan was refusing to share the Icee I bought the boys to share (after our long trip to the park).

Ryan: "I don't want to share!"
Me: "You can share or you can have nothing."
Ryan: "I'll have nothing."
Me: "Fine."
Me: "You don't get anything. Nothing means you get zero."

I don't think he quite caught on.

Happy Birthday Ry-Guy

All the kids loved helping Ryan. He loved being the center of attention.

In addition to Ninja Turtle PJs and shoes and a slew of monster trucks, Spongebob was a favorite

Jon had a teeny accident on grandpa

On Sunday we also celebrated Jon's baptism. This happened at 9:30 am and Ry's birthday was at 11:00am. We were a little "scrambly" that morning. Yes, that's a technical term.

All my boys!

Same boys after an hour of sitting not-so-nicely in church

Jon with grandpa and god-father. I love this candid shot!

Jon wasn't so sure about being baptized. Dear God, don't take it personally!

So that's kind of why I've been MIA..... At some point, I may get to posting Easter photos.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter 2015 & Other News

What's happening over here?

Oh, not much. Just a man coming back to life three days after his death.* Oh and threats of bar complaints.

I'm working on a response to a motion for attorneys fees as part of the aftermath of our recent trial. Included among the list of expenses that the other side wants us to pay for: deoderant and a week's worth of Starbucks. I wish I was joking but you literally can't make this shit up! So, I'm gonna be having a whole lot of fun responding to THAT.

The opposing attorney has been sending me not-so-kind emails all week. I decided that you know you've officially "made it" as a lawyer when your opposing counsel begins to challenge your professionalism. But apparently, it's totally professional to ask the Court to make your opponent pay for your deodorant. I'm sorry. You just stink. It has nothing to do with the trial. The End.

In other Big News: Ryan is potty trained!! He only pooped on my floor for an entire week! Considering the number of times this week that I had to pick up solid waste with a thin plastic bag, it felt like I had a dog park in my living room. And he only dropped his binky in the toilet twice. But we've been accident free now for several days. And I'm so happy to cut down by half the number of diapers I have to change each day. Because Jon is now eating baby food....and you all know what that means....

I had the kids' photos taken a couple weeks ago. Unfortunately, the only picture I really loved was the one shot that I decided to join. I used up all of my faithful tricks (making up jokes about a dog pooping on people's heads, doing a booty dance behind camera, and demanding that the kids not smile), but nothing seemed to get their smiles going. Oh well... at least my hair looks awesome.

We had Jacob's parent-teacher conference last week. Jacob has been reading at a first grade level for a while now. The teacher wants him to be tested for their gifted child program, which will be happening next week. Parents all know how amazing their kids are, but to hear a teacher sit there and gush and gush over how well your child is doing and how great he's just indescribable. I don't think he is really my kid. I couldn't read until second grade.

Then there was Easter.

And lots of egg hunts. The kids will go to great lengths to get their hands on those plastic eggs.

There was messenger bag posing.

And monkeying around.

And pinata hitting.

And pretzel bunny eating.

And loot inventory. The kids had a total of three Easter egg hunts. One at great-grandma's house. One at Aunt Cindy's house. And the final one at home, which didn't happen until 7:30pm. The two older kids spent the night at their grandma's house last night so the Easter Bunny was able to take her precious time in hiding all the eggs and the baskets. We left the house at 9am for Easter mass and didn't get home with the kids until 7:30. The Easter Bunny wised up this year and filled the eggs with quarters instead of candy. The kids loved it!

Ryan couldn't be happier about his flashlight. He saw that and screamed for joy. It was pulling teeth to make him go find the rest of the eggs. The bunny brought Jacob an Avenger's watch. He saw it and exclaimed, "HOW DID THE EASTER BUNNY KNOW THIS IS JUST WHAT I WANTED?!" Hey bunny, you did good this year!

It was a great day!

*That would be Jesus, for anyone who didn't know.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Theme Of This Post: Kids Are Awesome

I have so much blogging to do and so little time! I guess I'm going to have do so some quick recaps.

Two Fridays ago (ugh, behind!), I chaperoned my son's Kindergarten class field trip to the Seattle Aquarium. I showed up and the teacher gave me a gigantic bag of snack and name tags and sent four boys my way. Parenting tip: if you have three boys at home, do not let the teachers know. You will become a hot commodity for field trips and the teachers will have no reservations about loading you up with all the troublesome boys.

When I looked around at all the other chaperon groups and saw that I was the only group of four (others were groups of three) AND the only all-boy group, I was tempted to worry. But then I thought, "eh, how hard can this be? We just have to shuttle kids around, get them to the aquarium, and show them some fish, right?" HA HA HA!

The ferry ride itself was...interesting...The all-girl group next to us was sitting quietly and pretending to be cats. The mix group to the other side of us was focused on the work packets the teacher handed out. My group? Constantly bouncing off the seats (literally), pulling gum out from under the tables and throwing it at each other, drawing aliens in their sea life work books, fighting over snacks, and kicking each other under the tables.

There was one kid who I could not understand for the life of me. He must have been speaking another dialect? I'll be the first to admit that when it comes to diversity, I'm as white as snow. I'm as crackery as a Saltine. I know he was speaking English, but I seriously could not understand a word he said. Also, he didn't think any of my sea life puns were funny (what?!). And he kept rolling his eyes when I tried to make the kids practice the secret handshakes that I made them make up. Is that not cool in Kindergarten? Also, he kept running away. I lost him at the Octopus tank. And the Sea Otter exhibit. And at the ferry terminal. And under the Alaskan Way viaduct. And in the middle of an intersection. I have no idea how he made it back to school.

Team "Starfish!"

Touching stuff

Practicing walking like a starfish

At one point, all four of the boys were trying to cross the street in different directions. And one kept stopping to pick up every single hair tie he stumbled upon (*cough* Jacob *cough*). And one was purposefully trying to run away. And one was punching the other. That's when I made them all hold hand the rest of the walk to the Aquarium. You should have seen them all holding hands in disgust. They looked as if I had just force fed them dog shit. Then I laughed like a mad person and snapped a photo.

Anyway, we survived. And they somewhat finished their sea life work books.

Not sea life...but accurate?

Last week Jacob started T-ball. You guys. T-ball is AMAZING. How come no one ever told me how HILARIOUS it would be?! Must be one of those mom secrets you have to discover for yourself. So at first, the kids just stand where they are told and stare off into space waiting for an alien space ship to pop from the sky. There are a couple grass pickers and nose pickers. The rest all look bored out of their minds.

After a couple practice innings, the kids finally realize that when someone hits the ball, they are supposed to stop it and then tag the batter with it. When a ball goes flying into the outfield, every single infield player simultaneously abandons his base to chase after the ball. The kids are so eager and will do anything to get their grubby mitts on the ball. This usually results in all the kids forming a giant dog pile on top of the ball. When one of the kids actually gets the ball, chances are he won't know he is supposed to THROW it. When the ball comes to him, he will grab it and then run half-way across the field to try to tag the batter. Some kids get bored and start to sit in the outfield. Some will start to twirl or leave the field to climb trees.

Jacob's first hit!

Jon's practicing his cheers

Watching the batters is just as hilarious. Jacob swings and then does a complete twirl. Several of the kids keep throwing their bats. And they ALWAYS overshoot first base and end up half way in the outfield. It's SO fun to watch. I always leave T-ball practice with sore laughing muscles.

Ryan is so anxious to play T-ball and is very upset that he can't play with the big kids. I told him that kids who wear diapers can't play T-ball. And after an entire year of attempting (half-heartedly) to potty train him, he potty trained HIMSELF in ONE DAY. Hasn't worn a diaper since! Unfortunately, I can't keep good on my promise because they don't have T-ball for his age group. But I did buy him a mitt. He's taken it everywhere and has slept with it in his bed every night since we bought it a week ago.

My cool dudes, getting reading to head to T-ball practice.

This weekend we went down to visit cousins in Vancouver, Washington for an Easter egg hunt and celebration at their gorgeous farmhouse. We drove down the night before and stayed in a hotel with some cousins. Two adults and five kids and we all crammed into one room. It was a blast! The kids played their hearts out in the pool then stayed up until 11pm, much to the adults' chagrin. I discovered that there was a geocache hidden at the hotel and the kids had a blast "treasure hunting."

Koi pond near the geocache location

Jacob tried to kiss one

Pool time!

We sat in the kid friendly lodge and had a nice happy hour dinner. My meal was only interrupted three times by Ryan having to go potty (downside of potty training). We spent a very long time like this:

And Jon tried to practice his sitting. It wasn't going so well....

Saved by the pillow!

This morning was the Easter egg hunt complete with a real, live Easter bunny! Ryan was terrified. Jacob wanted nothing to do with him. Jon was clueless. Perfect!

Oh hey, I don't know about this thing that's holding me, but I see my mommy!

I made my boys take a group picture with me. It's pretty much a given that I make them pose at all events. They will be scarred for life and never want to step in front of a lens ever again. 

This is our Aunt and Uncle's farm house. I love it. I want it. It's amazing.

Jacob shared some dance moves with Mr. Bunny. I'm not sure who's winning.

After the egg hunt, the kids thought it would be HILARIOUS to put plastic eggs in the hen house. The chickens kept taking turns pecking the intruding eggs to death. It looked like they were playing soccer with them. It was pretty funny. Also, kids are so naughty.

We finally came home after the long, long weekend and Jon decided to try out his new (used) toy. He loves it! Also, this is a meal-prepping life saver.

Phew, that's a wrap! Now to crash and make up for sleep lost during last night's slumber party.