Journey To the Finish Line

PR's, 4 children, hopes and dreams; I'm always running after something



Do it Yourself

A few days ago, I read a really eye opening article.

A typical morning around here consists of about 23432897 million requests for something, from me, made by the twins. It doesn’t matter if daddy or grandma or freaking Santa Claus were around, it is me they are asking.

Mommy I need apple juice. Mommy I need yogurt. Mommy I need peanut butter. Mommy she took my toy. All before I’ve even managed to scoop the coffee out of the container and into the pot.

Bryan works way over the “full time” number of hours each week and has to add even more than that over the next three. Combine that with pending shoulder surgery that is going to leave him one handed for who knows how long (he can’t lift more than a cup of coffee with his right hand for 6 weeks, at least), and I was beginning to feel a bit overwhelmed.

So, this article.

It talked about this 4 year old who gets up each morning, brushes her teeth, gets herself dressed, makes her own waffle and eats while her mom gets ready for the day. The night before she helps pick out her outfit for the next day. The twins are almost four, so I think to myself this is perfect. It is time for more independence. I will simply require them to do more for themselves. I share this idea with Bryan, and come Sunday night, I am ready to tackle the week.

That is, until reality hit me.

Monday morning rolls around. No one helped pick out outfits the night before because we were all up late at my parents watching the Superbowl, so instead I figure I’ll have them help me pick out an outfit this morning. I have some extra time. No problem. Miles is easy. He wants a t-shirt and we fight a bit over shorts vs pants, but otherwise his outfit is complete in about 2 minutes. Next is Abby’s turn. My sweet Abby. She turns down every.single. shirt or dress suggestion I make. All of them. I literally go through every option in her closet. Finally a little frustrated, I tell her to choose her own. She says no, and sits on the floor. I pick out a dress myself, telling her if she won’t pick one I will, which results in a tantrum because she didn’t want that outfit either.

So this is going well.

Step two is teaching Miles how to make his own waffle. This actually goes ok, and Miles seems excited about the idea of doing this on his own. Except when it comes to spreading the peanut butter. Then he just simply “can’t do it”. I make him try anyway. Abby chooses yogurt and picks one from the shelf, and hands it to me to open, asking for a spoon. I tell her to get one herself. No, she tells me. *sigh*.


After breakfast, I try to catch them and encourage them to get dressed before they start playing, but no luck. I’m pretty sure I ask them to “please put your underwear and clothes on” a dozen times to deaf ears, each request slightly louder than the previous one. Finally I give up before I lose it, lay on the couch and scroll through Facebook for a few minutes, before I end up helping them get dressed. This lady with her independent 4 year old must be living in an alternate universe.*



*I will say that after a couple more days of attempts, each day is getting a little better, so it is a work in progress and I will take it. Abby even picked out her dress last night after rejecting only 10 or so other choices. #winning



Oblivious to the Obvious

I may be somewhat biased, but I feel like my kids are pretty smart. They have great pretend play skills, they’ve mostly mastered third person pronouns, they (mostly) use plurals and correct past tense. Most of the time their questions, albeit repetitive (mommy can I have milk? Mommy can I have milk?) make total sense.

At least until recently.

Most of the time I aim to fit my workout in between the time Bryan drops the kids off at daycare on the way to the high school and when I have to be at work. But sometimes they are at home with me, as was the case twice this week.

After a bit of encouragement, the two joined me on the third floor for my 5 mile tempo run. A tempo run (or what is supposed to be “comfortably uncomfortable”) is challenging enough in itself, so I was hoping they could entertain themselves with the IPAD for 40 minutes and leave me alone.

Right. Dream on.

After a blissfully uninterrupted half mile warm up, I cranked up the speed, and almost immediately noticed I had company. Miles walked up to the treadmill. He looked at it. He looked at me. He asked:

“Mommy, what are you doing?”

Uh….*pant pant*, I’m running *pant pant*. What does it look like I’m doing? *gasp gasp*

Satisfied, he walks away.

About 15 minutes later, and much more out of breath than before, Abby walks up to the treadmill.

“Mommy, what are you doing?”



Today I’m trying to squeeze 30 minutes on the bike trainer. The twins have seen me on this thing already at least 25 times. I get on the bike, I start pedaling, and low and behold Miles walks up and asks

“Mommy, what are you doing?”


But wait, it gets better.

Unfortunately, although the twins are daytime potty trained, Miles STILL refuses to poop in the toilet 98% of the time. Finally recently he’s started feeling motivated by prizes. Over Christmas Bryan bought some trucks on clearance and showed them to him, telling him he could have them once he pooped. He’s earned one so far. Trying to follow in Abby’s footsteps, Miles decides he’s going to try, but then decides he can’t. I tell him that if he does go, there is a truck upstairs with his name on it.

“There are no names on the truck, mommy”

Well buddy, you got me there.

Something Yucky This Way Comes

Dogs do gross things.

As it turns out, so do toddlers.

I fully expected to scold the dogs for doing disgusting things. In fact, just a few days ago when Miles had a random vomiting spell, Bryan told me that Chance ate all of it while the two of them showered (ew, EW EW). What I didn’t expect was that I’d be scolding the toddlers for similarly odd things (no toddler ate vomit, I assure you).

Comment with  your guesses, and I’ll post the answers in a later post. Some are applicable to both.



1. ” _____, don’t lick the oven.”

2. “Bryan, ____ got into the dirty diapers again.”

3. “Um, thanks for the dead bug.”

4. “_____, don’t eat Sadness.”

5.  “Bryan, ______ peed on the floor again.”

6. “UGH _______, why did you eat that?”

7.  “EW! _______ GET OUT OF THE GARBAGE!”

8. “I’m pretty sure ____ gave me something that was out of ____’s mouth.”

9. “I really wish_____ would stop licking the floor”

10. “_____, that’s not food”


Life With Twins – Two and Three Quarters

I check my Facebook every morning specifically for the post about my memories on that day over the past several years. Sometimes an old post will come up from my pregnancy or the first couple years of the twins’ lives and I like to read them again. It’s amazing how fast time has gone and what I’d forgotten.

In three months, these two will be THREE.

I just read over the last update to jolt my memory on what exactly I wrote about, and even in a short span of three months it’s amazing how much more the twins are like KIDS than toddlers.

We have conversations:

A grocery store trip with Miles:
Mommy, whats that? Chips
What’s that? Chips
What’s that? Chips
What’s that? Still chips
Oh, chips.
Mommy, what’s that? Chips

And so do they:

*Miles roars like a lion.*
Abby: that’s enough
Miles: stop it
Abby: no screaming
Miles: be quiet. 
It’s like I’m listening to myself, only in much cuter voices.

They really are smart. More often than not, they are using full, grammatically correct sentences. I’m talking plurals, possessives, verbs (past and present tense), adjectives, you name it. Yes, they still have bouts of meaningless babble, and that is what helps me hold onto their “baby-ness” just a little bit longer. They can both count to 20. Abby knows all upper and lowercase letters, along with some letter sounds. Miles knows all uppercase and a few lowercase. They sit at the big people table now. They drink out of regular (albeit plastic) cups. They watch movies (I’m pretty sure we’ve seen Inside Out about 50 times – no lie). They draw (scribbly) circles. They “make” pizza.

They’ve started eating a few vegetables again, but still prefer things like hot dogs (sigh) and macaroni and cheese. I make myself feel better by buying the organic kind. Organic junk. Mom of the year. Eggs, cereal, peanut butter, and of course sweets are also favorites. Abby LOVES ice cream.


They go to bed between 8-8:30 and wake up between 6-7, usually closer to 6. They still nap at daycare but not so much at home, unless they are in the car. If they don’t nap over a weekend we will put them to bed around 7, which usually works as long as we’ve been pretty busy all day. They still love to “go to school” but pitch a fit if they can’t “ride in the truck (SUV)”, for reasons that I don’t quite understand. We’ve visited McDonalds often lately to “play on the slide”.

Yes, they still throw tantrums:

It is 6:25am, and we have already had tantrums for the following reasons:
I won’t let them eat ranch flavored veggie straws for breakfast
Abby doesn’t want cereal
Abby doesn’t want peanut butter
Abby doesn’t want to be shut in the pantry
I yelled at Miles for shutting her in the pantry
We are out of eggs
Miles dropped his car
They want milk, like, yesterday
Nevermind, Abby doesn’t want milk

Where is my coffee?

No, they are still not potty trained. Ugh. Don’t even ask. #lazymom I *think* at least Miles is finally getting ready though, because several times he’s complained about being wet. (yet when I ask him if he wants to pee on the potty he screams NO PEE ON POTTY!!!!!)

I mean, they won’t go to kindergarten in diapers…..right?

It was a busy three months with Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays and a trip to Disney.

Picture summary:

  • We have family pictures taken

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  • My aunt visits and we explore downtown Summerville


  • We enjoy Christmas presents (though still didn’t quite get the concept)
  • Santa and Waffle House were pretty fun too
  • Yes, Abby still loves food


  • We ride (aka sit on rides) at the mall
  • Still making funny faces
  • Enjoying birthday parties
  • And staying up late
  • And finally, the best of all, DISNEY !

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Toddler Cat

So, I’m really more a dog person, but recently I’ve decided that toddlers are a lot like cats.

  • They only cuddle when they want to
  • They hiss at you when you try to touch them or something of theirs and they don’t want you to
  • They are moody
  • They don’t like to wear socks
  • They look at the food you put in front of them as if it was worse than death

But mostly:


A two year old’s favorite word is no. At the very least, it comes in right behind another word we hear often: MINE.

I have kids at work that say no to everything, which after awhile can become quite frustrating. So, instead ending up on a never ending train of “do you want this?” “no”, I just ask questions that end up with funny answers.

For example (and pardon the fact that I look like crap):

I’ve even tried “do you want a cooke?”, except every once in awhile this catches their attention and they respond with a “COOKIE!” and then I am in trouble.

Abby, who tends to say things a week or so behind Miles, started the same trend recently. Yesterday, after we returned home from a birthday party, Abby decided to go for a swim. As she sits there, I say “Abby, did you decide to swim? With all your clothes on?”



Say What? – Part 2 (and Jord Giveaway Winner)

2 year olds are interesting beings. The things they learn, and how quickly they learn them can be really astonishing.

Last week, both twins and I were sitting in the family room. I put together a car track for Miles and their favorite nursery rhymes (courtesy of You Tube and Little Baby Bum) were playing in the background. My parents bought the car track a few months ago and this was the first time he was really excited to play with it. I started to take a video of him playing with them when I realized Abby was reciting the ABC’s.

Miles names 4 numbers. Abby knows 7. Like, they can look at them and tell me what they are. I was amazed.

But, the funny ones are still my favorite.

This past weekend all of us were spending some time outside. Miles came over, exclaiming “bug!” (another one I didn’t know he knew) “its a bug!” Excitedly, he opens his small hand and releases a dead bug into mine.


“It’s all done,” he says.

Yup, buddy. It sure is.

*For those of you who entered the watch giveaway – we have a winner! Kristy Hanselman – an email is coming your way! Congratulations!

Toddlers are …..Can be…..A-Holes

A friend of mine often tells me that when she leaves her kid with other people, they rave about how good he is, how well he listens, and how much fun he is to watch. But somehow, when he gets home, a switch goes off and he’s a completely different (sometimes mouthy) kid.

I get it now.

Miles’ daycare teachers love him. Every day they talk about what a great kid he is. I am always relieved to hear this of course (because who wants to be the one with the kid that causes all the trouble?) and we all drive home, happy.

The door opens, and more often than not: boom. He’s throwing cups, spoons, food at the dogs. He’s throwing a tantrum because I want him to ask me “please” to open the gate. He wants and cookie – I say no and the world as he knows it comes to an end. I’ve read before that kids tend to act the worst around their parents because they are the ones they know they can trust. They know, even if not consciously, that they can push and push and push your buttons and you will still love and cuddle them. I appreciate this sentiment. But sometimes man, when I’ve had a long day, I’d just love the kid to calm the heck down.

Today, Bryan tells me that Miles hits him. Not once, not twice, but three times. And the third time (after he was warned and stopped twice) he was put in time out, where he naturally threw a fit.

They are two. i get it. I love them, but for the love of Pete sometimes dude.  IT ISN’T THE END OF HUMANITY!

I do bedtime routine and take a shower. In my search for my missing hairbrush, I walk past their room, just in time to hear Miles say (in just about the sweetest voice ever) “Night night Abby”.


(Don’t forget to enter my Jord Watch giveaway!)

Life With Twins – 2 years

This post is insanely overdue (for me anyway), but after feeling more “forced” to than wanting to blog for the last month or so, I decided to take a couple weeks off and see if my motivation came back with it. Plus, it would be ridiculous to have completed every week from Week 1-52 and every month from ages 1-2 and then leave out the last one.

I’m not honestly sure what my plan is for “updates” from here forward. I do like having these to look back on, but not sure it feels necessary to keep going month by month. So the jury is still out on that one. The bonus of this age is toddlers tend to say and do quite few funny things, so I’m hoping to keep up updates using more of that “theme”.

I think the biggest change from last month to this month is just how different they are. Not from each other, necessarily (though they are) but more week to week or even day to day. They know things I had no idea they knew. They say things I’d never heard from them before. I’m not even sure how many words they have anymore. Yes, they still throw tantrums for crazy unpredictable reasons (Abby cried when I took them to the pool yesterday)  but for the most part, I’m surprised to find myself say I have really enjoyed this age.

I have been warned that things get more difficult around 2.5, so we will see.

Abby still LOVES her mirror.

Hi me!
Hi me!

Both loves music lately, which of course I love. Favorites: Row row row your boat, 10 in the bed, ABC. They also do hand gestures to the blessing they do every day at daycare, which is super cute. Miles is still the more talkative of the two, but Abby holds her own. She asks to “go to goose” (school). They do use words for most things but many are still pretty general (more, this etc) but they are learning new words every day and as long as they are using something in lieu of whining and screaming, I just repeat the word I’d like them to use and let it go. They still nap once a day. 12-2 at daycare and 1-3 at home. Bedtime gets pushed closer to 8:00 now that they are getting a solid 2 hour nap.

The best thing about this age, I think, is that they are just funny. For instance, Miles came to me with his pool floaties and insisted I put them on. Last week he climbed into the wagon and started to buckle himself in. Abby dances in front of the mirror whenever she can, and tells herself she is “so pretty”. She asks for “tickle tickle”. Miles opens and closes the door over and over while telling us “hi” and “byebye”. Abby sounds hilarious when she does her donkey sound (eee aw). It was hysterical when she got her name mixed up. Yeah, they do their share of kicking and screaming, but we do a lot of laughing too.

  • Miles greets others from the comfort of his own front door
  • But he still knows what it means to be cool
The cheesiest
The cheesiest
  • The whole family doesn’t quite fit into the new house
  • We run a race
Ready to run
Ready to run
  • We have a birthday

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  • Abby accidentally has a twin
Hi, we dressed alike
Hi, we dressed alike
  • We take another trip to bee city
  • We hang out at the pool
  • Miles does some light morning reading
The high is 85 today
The high is 85 today
  • Abby puts herself to work
I build things. Not really. but I look cute in this hat.
I build things. Not really. but I look cute in this hat.


I’m holding a mirror in front of her here..

For those that were interested, another post will be coming soon with another Plexus update (first post here, first update here, and second update here if you missed them), and the great people at Jord Watch agreed to another giveaway for Fathers Day!

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