And out of the blue, it got COLD! Go figure! On Monday, my parents were on the marriage panel at MOPS. I was so proud to see them up there giving all this great advice to my best mom pals. That was just so cool! I got to have a night out that evening celebrating Jessica's Birthday at a fancy Taverna dinner followed by drinks at Grape & Grain- and that was just Monday! Tuesday we did story time and then checked out the new park. So nice- yet so cold! The girls had their Tuesday tennis, which is turning into a neat thing for them. Wednesday was super busy. I was planning on it being low key with Abigail's pal Alice over. Well, they all came over- so did the contractor guys starting on the popcorn ceiling in the hallway- which was/is a total mess! I volunteered to help with the MOPS photo fundraiser. Hanging out in Vanessa's back yard was fun. Stockton had a food truck fest so we stopped there for dinner before religion. Thursday was my mom's Birthday. Suzanne and I took her and dad to the Wine Cellar for lunch. It was nice to catch up- although we did discuss quite a bit of the big wedding next week! Yesterday was St. Patty's Day. Ellie and Abby paddleboated, while Marly, Voss and I went by land! We spent all day out there! It was awesome! A great MOPS turn out- guys came after work. The weather even warmed up! Such a Friday Funday. Today, we got up and packed up and now we're headed to Don Pedro Island for spring break! Wooo Whooo!
We had a fun weekend! Phil's best friend, Andrew was in town. They had a great time catching up and playing golf. My Thursday started rough with incompetence at the pediatrician which means Kids Park didn't get a shot record, so I couldn't drop of Voss. It took a while to work it out, I was super late to my consultation at CMA. It all worked out, though. That afternoon was the ballet, dinner, girl scout shuffle. I worked on some monogramming later. I re-posted a friend's status on Facebook on this article. We're having a great convo! Friday, we picked up a pal and spent the morning at the beach. It was chilly at first but warmed up a bit. It was nice to catch up with my pal, Kat. I took the kids to Kids Night at Intuition Friday night. It was awesome! We all had a great time! Saturday morning was a scramble- we had the CEE Discernment. I was so nervous, but it all worked great! We had a relaxing afternoon. I took the littles on a paddleboat ride. We cleaned out Paul's grapefruit tree and did some juicing. That night, Phil had a guys night- I tagged along, drinking my new fav drink, salty dogs. We sprang ahead and lost an hour. This morning, Andrew came by on his way to the airport. We went to a later mass then took some new friends to lunch and a tour of TCC. I actually took a great nap this afternoon. We did Sunday Funday at the Hollands with brats on the grill. What a great way to spice up a chilly, gloomy spring day.
Marlyn Maria is SIX! She's been asking Google Home for weeks, "How many days until March 7?" Wow! And it came and went, just like that! Here's my MOPS recap from our cooking meeting. We also started Lent. I've given up being mean to Phil at night. I just get so tired and turn into a Grizzly Bear. What I should do is just go to bed. But then when would I have time to write this blog, check my email or plan the next day? On Wednesday we ran to TCC and swam in the pool! March 1st must mean summer is here! Ha! It was actually an awesome day. We had the fish fry at mass then Ash Wednesday- front row with friends! Thursday, Katie helped me watch Voss while I shopped at Wee Trade. I got some more super cute things- sandals for the girls, a searsucker suit for Voss! We raced to have lunch with my mom at TCC and showed her the room for my sister's bridemaids luncheon. The big wedding is coming soon! Crazy afternoon with ballet then Girl Scouts. We brought in pudding and cookies for Marly's fun Friday treat at school to kick off her Birthday. We rode bikes, which made it more exciting. Then, I ran to pick up our van from an oil change. We had one of Abigail's friends from school over for a play date. She was SO excited! They were really sweet together. Kayla's mom had to leave to take her brother to the doctor so she stayed with us for even longer. Super fun day! We went to First Friday later. I picked up pizzas for the school movie night so I did a smart mom move and got an extra to feed my kids. So, when we got to TCC they went straight to play on the lawn. Aside from Voss, we had a nice dinner with friends. Saturday, Ellie had a brownie trip to the museum. I spent the morning moving back into my room. I put a bookshelf and a sewing table and patio set together! I am so proud of myself!! It feels SO good to be back in my new, beautiful room! I'm actually writing this from our new balcony! We went to the Suters for pulled pork lunch then came home in time for an early sitter. Phil and I went to the TCC Oyster Roast. It was so much fun! You know oysters are my favorite food- so it didn't take much! But the Thivierges and Hollands came with us and we made some new friends, too! Sunday was late mass then a farewell reception for Fr. Joseph. That afternoon was Marly's Birthday party at Sweet Pete's candy shop. She and 7 friends made lolly pops! She had such a wonderful time. It was super sweet. We went to the Hollands for grilled brats for dinner. They are so hospitable! Monday was a MOPS leadership meeting. I was glad to have something fun planned! We did a bit of the park after but then I got busy working on CEE stuff. We're struggling to get coverage and attendance at discernment. Not sure how this will shake out- Come Holy Spirit, come! Tuesday was Marly's actual Birthday. My brunette princess is now 6! What a fun year! Do you remember being 6? We went to Dunkin Donuts for breakfast. Voss and I did story time after dropping off all his sisters. Then, we went to Publix and got lunch and had lunch with Ellie and the Birthday girl at school. After school the girls had their first day of tennis clinic. I went on a little run during the big girls clinic. All in all, I think it was a success. Such a beautiful day to be out there! We had a quick Birthday dinner at Chick Fil A- then Phil took Ellie to her First Communion prep class. Ellie is so ready for her Birthday party! Today we went to Barnes & Nobel for story time. I ended up carrying a screaming Voss out with Abigail following in tears. The train table. We delivered a meal to a new mom of 2 and then went to the WD. Golf this afternoon with another run and gorgeous day. Nothing to complain about here! Happy Spring!
Maybe because I'm a stay-at-home mom (so most of my day is spent talking to children) I value good conversations. You know, ones that make you keep thinking later. Or ones that make you research. Or ones you want to keep going. I had a lot of good conversations this week. Last week I mentioned book club. I also went out on Tuesday night for a MOPS spin off girls night. Kim's friend just opened a clinic. We went to dinner then checked out CMA and learned about laser treatments for various skin conditions and pelvic conditions, Botox/Dysport and fillers, body sculpting, etc. I'd never done anything like this before. It was pretty neat. I continued a conversation at the park with Anne on this article she posted. We've been tossing around ideas on how to minister to moms truly needing support. A rainy Wednesday morning was the perfect time to discuss Trump's Executive Order on Immigration. April even had her sister-in-law Facetime for the conversation from DC. We even discussed the power of the president, which is pretty interesting. Thursday I did some potty training with Voss. I wouldn't say we made much progress, but at least its a start. Construction in our bedroom is still moving very slowly. Painting was done this week. Hoping to move back into my closet this week. Ugh. Friday we rode the skyway to story time. Chaotic, but fun. We hosted our last CEE community meeting. We jazzed it up with some live music. I made a bunch of spaghetti. I think it was a good meeting. Here's the recap. Check out the video section of the blog. I've been catching up on seasonal videos (finally). Yesterday was one of those marathon days. We got up early and picked up babysitter Becca. Ellie, Marly, Phil and I ran the mile fun run for the Ortega River Run. Then, Phil and I did the 5 mile run. It was hot! Such a fun race, though! We dropped off Becca then headed to World Thinking Day for Girl Scouts. The girls booth was Mexico. Voss and Abby had fun in the bounce house and sampling food from all the countries. We had a bit of a break, then headed to celebrate Wyatt's 1st Birthday. Those are always so fun! Ellie went to Charlotte's Birthday sleepover! She stayed up until 1am and had a ball! Meanwhile, Phil and I went to the MOPS & POPS Valentines Day dinner. Lots of laughs and amazing ribs catered by Tim Thompson at Cool Moose. There was an after party at the Suters. Then, we met up with the TCC crowd for Dan's 40th Birthday party. This morning came fast! I took the kids to mass, Phil took Ellie to sell Girl Scout cookies at Publix. We went to breakfast at TCC with the Hoggats then a visit with my parents. A relaxing afternoon then Sunday Funday at the Bentons. We did drive-thru and put the kids down super early. I'm headed to bed soon, too.
I was knocked on my bottom this week with the flu. No, I did not get a flu shot. Shame on me. Everyone else in the family did. I guess that's what I get for worrying about everyone else. Lesson learned! I was fine on Monday. We had a great MOPS meeting (recap here). Then, around lunch on Tuesday at the park after story time, it sorta hit me. What a Valentine's Day! I spent the afternoon on the couch while letting the kids go to town on their candy bags from school. I lifted my head long enough to call a list of city councilmen to encourage them to vote YES on the HRO (and it passed, 12 to 6, yay!). Somehow, I got the kids fed, bathed and in bed. Phil came home early "to help" and ended up falling asleep in the playroom while Marly red. So, I made myself some soup and went to bed with NyQuil. Wednesday we brought Valentines to residents at an Assisted Living facility then more soup at Panera. Another afternoon on the couch for me. Thursday was still rough. Voss watched a lot of TV. Friday I was finally feeling better. I brought the younger two to Kids Park and went for an annual exam- always fun. Then, Abigail had a Circus performance at school. My parents took her to lunch and shopping for a late Birthday treat. I took the kids out for Friday ice cream after school- just something fun after me being sick all week. We had a fun Friday night at Costco. I was excited for another early bedtime. Saturday we slept in and went to Katie Jo's farm again. Ellie & Marly were excited to go this time. More feeding the cows and horses! We went to the Suters after. That night I went to a Mardi Gras party and surprised Gina for her Birthday. It was fun catching up with old pals. Sunday was mass, breakfast and another afternoon with the Suters. The weather was so perfect! Monday was Presidents Day. We went out to Sawgrass for the morning. Such a perfect day out there! The ocean was still cold, I mean it is February- but that didn't bother Ellie! Voss loves playing with his boat! The pool was heated so we spent time there, too. We hit the town center on the way back to get a few things for Katie's wedding next month. Phil took the girls on a run with a boat ride back. I made dinner then ran to book club! My first run back after the race and being sick all week. It was a little rough, but a good 7 miles. We had a great discussion about The Mothers. I could have kept going, but my ride was leaving! I sure am happy to be on the mend. Being sick makes me grateful for my usual healthy self!
There's a lot of love going on around here. That's refreshing to talk about, so let's. The older girls has their awards ceremonies at school to recognize them for the first half of the year. I'm so proud of both of them! They both were awarded good conduct ribbons. Ellie got a ribbon for all As & Bs (just one B, one quarter in math) and Marly got all Es (which is like all As)! They both did so well! We had a MOPS leadership meeting, which is always fun. Then, we went to the park, which was just what I needed. Friendship love for sure! We did storytime and the park as usual on Tuesday. I stayed up super late Monday night to finish, the Nix. I wasn't a fan of the ending, which is a total bummer. We ran to school one afternoon and let the girls ride their bikes home, something different. Phil had a big work week. Abigail had a Love Day party at school. We went to chapel then to her class for the party. Voss blended right in. They were so sweet. It was early release with golf so we ran in the hood a bit. Religion class that night. On Thursday, I got 2 bags of sand and put them in one of our plastic pools to make a sandbox for Voss. Having sand ALL OVER our house totally sucks. But, Voss LOVES his new sandbox! Every time we go to the park he ends up playing in the dirt. So, I had to bring it home. We finally finished passing out all our girl scout cookies. If you owe us money, paypal it. Otherwise I'll forget to ask. Thursday night I went to a ladies night at TCC. I was pretty nervous at first but it ended up turning out super fun. There was even an after party at Lillians! Friday was a bit rough to start. We went out to our friend's farm for a MOPS play date. Hayride and feeding cows and horses. So cool! That night we took the kids out for pizza to celebrate Ellie's reading logs (free pizza!). Later, our friends Zoe and Andrew came over for an after dinner drink. It was so fun catching up with him! I tried to sleep in on Saturday. I made eggs benedict and we ate in front of the TV. Busy morning with cookie pick up and delivery, Voss and Phil getting a haircut and the girls going with me to pick up my race packet. Then, we met some friends out on the river for a voyage to a new brewery on the other side of the river. A new adventure for sure! It was a beautiful day to be out on the water! That night we got a new sitter and went to a friend's surprise Birthday. I hydrated and made it an earlier night. Phil kept going. This morning, I got up and met my sister and did the Breast Cancer Half Marathon. It was a great day for a run. Chilly and foggy with a breeze. I was so glad to finish before the sun came out- because those 4 miles on JTB are brutal! Suzanne and I ran together for the first half. Thanks so her, my pace was much faster! 10:45! It took forever to get back to the car, but we finally made it home. It was such an awesome race! I feel sore, but really good. Phil went with Marly to sell girl scout cookies at Lowes. They sold 100 boxes! I went to happy hour with some new friends- a liberal ladies fest. It was nice. I took the kids to contemporary mass. We got to witness Ellie's religion teacher's son get baptized. McDs for dinner! Now time for me to go to sleep, too!
We're just gliding our way through the winter. The morning are chilly but then it turns into perfect park weather. Nothing to complain about. We had a fun MOPS play date at a friend's house then went to lunch with the Trexlers. A usual park play date after story time on Tuesday. My friend Katie hooked me up on Wednesday. An old lady driving by and criticizing my parenting ruined my day. She not only gave me early shopping passes to JNJ, but she also watched the younger two for me so I could shop. Ellie got a new wardrobe, which she is proudly showing off around school. The Applegates invited us for fried chicken at FYC so that spiced up the week and the religion class routine. The groundhog decided winter will continue, but I'm not sure that matters much for us here in FL. We had a little family of manatees hanging out near our dock this week. The coolest video is here. It just doesn't get old! So cool! Ellie had to stay home from girl scouts for bad behavior. Hopefully a break will fix things. I took Voss to ride the train at the zoo. He loves trains. It turns out that the zoo train is the cheapest one in town. He loved it! We rode that sucker for 3 hours! Friday we did a park play date with friends. No frills- just enjoying the dirt at the park! We got a last minute sitter and did first Friday sans kids. It was a fun twist, but a reminder that we need a chaperone. Way too late night out. Saturday was rough. Phil took Marly to a Birthday party. I got to snuggle and read my book. Phil also picked up the Girl Scout cookies. We spent the rest of the weekend eating cookies, sorting cookies and delivering cookies. Lots of math, lots of organizing and lots of cursing. Thank you for all of those who supported the girls by buying cookies! They should be en route to you! Ellie had her last week of basketball. Last practice and last game. I give this sport a thumbs up! I think this was an awesome intro for us. She played so well. I'm really proud of how well she's come along. We met the Bentons at European street after for dinner. Phil did a guys night and I went to bed reading. Mass this morning with breakfast. More cookie work. We headed back to TCC for a pre-Super Bowl party with the Hoggatts. Running on the lawn and dinner on the patio- super nice! Now we are home drinking wine and eating cookies, watching the Super Bowl and playing with our new toy, Google Home.
Abigail and Voss were born a week apart (and 2 years). Voss turned two last Sunday and Abigail turned 4 this Sunday! We've been talking about and then celebrating these two for a while. They are so cute! Monday was a MOPS Monday. I need to do the recap here. Phil came home sick from work- stomach bug. He sorta went in and out on Tuesday and Wednesday. I toured a new school for Abigail next year and helped watch Mabel. So, Voss had a little pal. We did story time and the park on Tuesday. Abigail celebrated her Birthday at school with fun princess cupcakes! I got in a 10 mile run that night and some yoga the next morning. Abby, Voss and I met friends and went to an assisted living facility to play memory and a few other games with the residents. We packed up then headed to pick up the big kids from school then headed down to DIsney! We checked into our awesome hotel, Coronado Springs then headed to DIsney Springs for Abigail's Bibbity Bobbity appointment. Voss loved riding the train. We did pizza for dinner then headed back to the hotel. It was a rough night for me and Voss. I woke up with a sore throat. We did make it to Epcot but maybe the Storybook dining was too much? The kids loved it, though. We are recovering from our sicknesses. We put the 3 younger kids in Kids Park so Phil and I could actually watch Ellie's basketball game. We did make it to the Vogts potluck, too. Mass and breakfast on Sunday- with a candle in Abigail's eggs! We went to the Hollands for a Sunday Funday. So, it was a great celebration all in all!
With Monday being MLK's holiday and me headed out of town at the end of the week- there wasn't much between but prepping and packing! We went to the YMCA with the Nixons Monday morning to check it out. There's a lot of pressure to join around here. And yes, it is an amazing deal with the childcare and beautiful new facility. I don't think I'll regret saying, that my time home with the littles is so quick. I don't want to use it at a gym. One day, I'll have extra time to work out. For now, I'm putting it on a back burner. Meanwhile, it's great to know I can go for the day for the whole family for $15 (that's cheaper than kids park!) After a pilates class, we did lunch in the park then a play date with the Stevensons. I had a girls night out with my ole pal, Boozer that night. It was so nice to catch up.Tuesday we did story time and the park as usual. I was feeling rough that night- maybe food poisoning or a stomach bug? I had a few day body cleanse. I was able to get a night of 12-hour sleep out of it, though! On Wednesday, Abigail, Voss and I rode the train in the mall and had lunch with Phil while out picking up my bride maids dress and Ellie's flower girl dress for Katie's wedding. She came in town that afternoon along with Aunt Susan. They all came by for a visit that afternoon. I did all my last minute organizing for the cruise. Just what it takes to leave the house for a few days! I have such an amazing village of friends! On Thursday morning, we started early. The big girls rode bikes to school while I followed along with the van. I took Abigail to school and then dropped Voss with my pal, Trexler. She kept him and Abigail after school and for dance class. Another friend helped get Abby from school. Other friends helped get the big girls from school and to the Hollands for the afternoon before Phil could come get everyone. On Friday, Meghan kept Voss all day, Vanessa kept Abigail all day and also the girls after school again! Whew! She also took Marly to a Birthday party for us on Saturday! Suzanne drove us down to Pt. Canaveral Thursday morning to get on the Carnival Liberty- Last Sail Before the Veil to celebrate my sister, Katie's upcoming nuptials! You can't complain when on a cruise ship in the Caribbean! Also, Katie's future MIL, Patty, SIL, Liane and Steve's Godmother, Kris all joined us! It was so nice to meet them all! We really clicked so well and already acted like a big, happy family! Suzanne and Katie shared a room up on the 9th level. Mom, Aunt Susan and I were together on level 6, a room away from the Kukla klan. We did some boozing, eating, dancing sunning, reading, relaxing, lots of chatting, processing the inauguration and just getting to know each other. Friday we spent the day in the Bahamas. We walked through Atlantis. My stomach was pretty queezy that day, still. I went to bed earlier, after the evening show. A good night of sleep helped. The next day at sea was much better! Suzanne and I did 3 mile runs each morning. I was hoping to get in more, but that's all I could do on a treadmill! I took lots of showers- loved the shower spa! We spent the last night around the piano bar. It was such a nice weekend! Sunday we arrived early and got off the ship. It was nice to be welcomed warmly by the whole family. We did a little celebration for Voss's 2nd Birthday! The girls helped make a bright blue cake. We did a PH and La Nap with the Suters (just keeping the party going!) and then too much fun at an after party at the McGraths. Why don't I just go to bed?! A few days of "break" before the party keeps going to celebrate some Birthdays!
And then the cold weather was gone. Back to the gorgeous winter weather that we're used to! I've been working on the "behind the scenes" spreadsheet for next week when I go on my sister's bachelorette party- I can't just skip town for a few days! We had a MOPS Monday, "live google" they call it. I'm just sorta tired of talking about potty training. But I enjoyed the breakfast, coffee and conversation. We did story time and park as usual on Tuesday. Wednesday we brought dinner to a new mom and visited with an old pal, too. It was so nice to catch up with April! We did early release golf and religion class. Phil didn't make it out of his meeting in time so I had to do a last minute scramble to get the girls and Tug. We sold a bunch of Girl Scout cookies. The girls went to neighbors and did some Facetime selling as well. Thursday was an awesome coffee club discussing the defunding of Planned Parenthood. Friday I hosted a manatee encounter play date for MOPS. It was chaotic for sure, but super fun! We had CEE that night. It was a small turn out and we were bumped to the cafeteria. But, it was still fun. We started the Discernment process for new leadership, so that's exciting. Saturday morning was lazy. We did a girls run. My friend Jenny came by for a quick visit and to take my picture for an art piece she's doing. Then, Phil and I went to a family friend's wedding. We got to hang out with our ole pal, Fr. Tim. Gorgeous reception at the Garden club. This morning we took it easy again. Then, we did a Sunday Funday on the boat. We went to TCC for lunch then the Hollands for dinner. It was the perfect day! So, we're just enjoying a Florida winter. Nothing to complain about. So much to be thankful for!