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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

In The Interest of Being Interesting

Hello out there!

I just thought I'd let you know that Two Penny Jenny is going to be taking a little vacation.  I don't know if I'll have any internet access (which may be a nice change of pace) and I didn't want to leave anyone hanging. 

I hope you are all having wonderful relaxing summer and I'm sure I will have many stories to tell when I return.

Friday, June 22, 2012

15 years

I cannot believe I have been married for 15 years.

There are so many highlights over the years , I thought I would try and name 15.

1. Taking a few minutes at our wedding to go off to a quiet corner and watch everyone having fun.  The day was so busy, hot, crazy, hot, and did I mention hot? It was so nice to see all the people that were there to celebrate with us.

2. The morning we found out I was pregnant with our son.  I was so excited, we carpooled to work then.  When we got to a 4 way stop, I , the passenger, waved the other cars to go ahead of us.  My husband informed me that as the driver, that he should be the one to do it.  I was just so happy , I wanted everyone to have a great day!

3. Taking our son home from the NICU.

4. Trying to get pregnant the second time around, giving up and getting the surprise of a lifetime and the missing piece to our puzzle, a little girl.

5. Our trip to Niagara Falls, our first trip without kids.  It may have cost us a fortune, but it was great and I'm so happy we were both thinking, "I can't wait to take the kids here." Which we still have to do by the way.

6. Singing in the car.  Any road trip, my husband is really good at keeping everyone's moods up.

7. Purchasing our condo.  We were so happy to be able to finally afford something in a town that we love.  It may not be much, but it's ours and we love it.  I am very proud of us for getting it.

8. Camping.  So happy we all did it for the first time together.  I love that its a new tradition for us and we have such a great time (minus the 10 minute "setting up the tent fight").

9. The time I thought I heard something go bump in the night, husband went to investigate, stepped on legos in the living room.  I heard him yell, so I assumed something was up, I started yelling, he thought something was up, there was a lot of confusion, and yelling, "What are you yelling for?  What are YOU yelling for?!" and it was followed by us laughing like lunatics for hours.

10. Merkle de Mayo, a fun tradition we've started.  Friends, tequila, beer and nachos.  I love when we work as a team and get to have a great time.

11.  Sitting at any sporting event for our kids together.  It's almost like a date.  Almost.

12. I would be remiss, if I didn't mention that a huge highlight for me has been the privilege of getting to stay home.  When I think of where we started and how hard we've worked and now how hard he works for us, I am very thankful.  I love my hard workin man.

13. The weekend we painted the kitchen and living room and had waaay too many margaritas!

14.  The way we've comforted each other through tough times.

15.  Getting to spend this weekend with you !!!!  (big thanks to Mom and Dad for taking the kids!)

We Are The Champions!

The day was hot.  Very, very hot.

The kids had their last day of school.  We had planned to go to the lake in town to cool off, but my son had a championship playoff game that night and he didn't want to be tired.

The one bummer of the day was that my husband had to take a very last minute business trip and was going to miss the game.  My husband was so disappointed and sad, sometimes it's hard to be a grown up.  ( He would also be away for our 15th anniversary the next day...booo)

It was really funny watching my son prepare for his game.  I have learned he's superstitious.  He didn't want any dinner before the game because he didn't have dinner before the previous playoff game.  I tried explaining that with a 7:00 start time, he may not be able to eat until very late.  He ignored me as he had he pre-game snack, wheat thins and peanut butter.

On the way to the previous game, his spirits were down because he was kind-of convinced that they wouldn't win.  I decided to change all the lyrics to the songs we were listening to so that they were all about his team winning.  Not my finest lyrical work, but it made the kids laugh (which may have had more to do with my lack of singing ability) and it was fun.

One of the songs we heard was "Come on Eileen". I LOVE this song, I never get tired of it.  So I changed the lyrics to "Come on (town name here), Oh I swear, you can win, You've got this, Oh come on (town name)".

On the way to the championship game, at almost exactly the same place we had heard it two days before, "Come on Eileen" came on the radio again!  My son turned to me and yelled, "You have to sing it again!"  I was not about to be the reason the team lost, so I obliged.

We played against another tough team, but we came out top!  We managed another shut-out against a very good team.  I called my husband when there was one out left and put him on speaker phone so he could hear all the chaos when we won.  It was great, not the same as being there, but great.

It's so nice to see a team come together.  A team of really hard working and nice 13-14 year olds.  The coach had really great things to say about them all and was rewarded with a cooler full of water over his head.  It was such a great night and wonderful memory for my son.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Speed Of Lightening...Roar Of thunder...Fighting All Who Rob Or Plunder

UNDERDOG!!!!!!

Last night, my son had a playoff game for baseball.

According to the gossip on the field, my understanding was that out of 8 teams, 4 made the playoffs.  I am thankful to anyone who could make sense of this crazy season.  There were so many missed games due to the rain.  So, of the 4 teams, our team was in 4th place, we were set to play against the 1st place team.

I had sat through two games where we had played against this team and they had clobbered us.  One score I remember was 18-3.

When planning the week ahead, I will admit, I assumed that we would be done with baseball last night.

I've never been more excited to be wrong.

I dropped my son off at the field, went with my daughter to grab a coffee and returned in time for when the game started.  As I was getting my chair, my daughter's blanket and her backpack stuffed with everything imaginable to keep her busy during the game, I heard some cheering from the field.

I was happy to hear that our team had scored a run.  Soon enough we settled in and our team was up another run.

Some other parents started to arrive and were wondering if we were losing by much.  They were as happy as I was to hear that we were winning!

All of the boys played well.  On a personal note, my son, who has been average all year, managed to make two phenomenal plays.  One being an outfield catch and another outfield catch followed by a throw to first for an awesome double play. 

It's so fun to see him have some moments of pride.  He may not be the most talented kid out there, but he shows up and has a good attitude and I think(being his mom , I am completely biased) he deserves some moments of glory.

I can't wait to see what happens in the championship game this week.  No matter what , these boys have really come together and I am so proud of what they've accomplished.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Why Do They Call It Softball?

So last night we made our second trip to the emergency room with our daughter.

Our first was about a year ago when her finger was slammed in her brother's bedroom door.

Last night, my daughter had her last softball game to be followed by an awards ceremony.  My son was at another field in town with his own baseball game.

We had decided that since this season has been so scattered with the rain, my husband and I would both attend our daughter's event since my son still has baseball for awhile.

My parents came to join in the fun and I had the video camera ready to go.

She was really having an amazing game, a couple of nice hits and she was able to play 1st base (her favorite).  She was so happy we were all there to see it.

Then sadly, a throw came to first base and we all thought she may have actually caught it, but soon realized she got hit. 

I saw her coaches go running, I turned to my husband and said, "Go."  This is because he is faster than me and I needed someone there fast.

As she walked across the field, her face just began to swell, then I saw dark blue almost immediately.  I really thought we'd throw some ice on it and she'd be back out there, but the more I looked at it, the more concerned I was getting, it was so huge!

I told my husband I was ready to panic and take her somewhere and that he needed to talk me down.  Another parent showed concern at how fast it was swelling and my husband looked at me and said, "Go, I'll pack up the stuff and meet you there."

I am a little ashamed to say that it took my mother saying, " We'll go to J's game and meet you at home later" for me to even remember I had a son!  I was panicking like no body's business.

I was a storm of emotion on the inside, but held it together until I hit a particularly long red light, where I did a little bargaining for my daughter's health.

When we arrived at the emergency room, it occurred to me I had never been there before by myself  and I wasn't quite sure what to do with my car.  I am very thankful for the valet attendant who took care of it all, for a $5.00 charge of course, but it was so worth it as I fumbled with locks and windows and general confusion.

Everyone at the emergency room was amazing.  The hospital closest to us is a teaching hospital and I am always a little nervous, but both doctors we dealt with were spot on.

The concern was of course, a broken cheek bone.  Nothing about her injury indicated that was the case, but the only way to be sure was to do a CT scan, and that brought up a whole host of other worries, like radiating my child's developing brain and such.

We decided, as the kindly Dr. Murphy assured us this is exactly what he would do with his own grandchild, to wait and see if it got worse before we proceeded with the scan.

We finally arrived home, where I was so touched by receiving a call from her coach, a teammate's mom (whose daughter threw the ball and is my daughter's friend and was very upset about it.  I felt awful, I hadn't even realized who threw it and I assured her that my daughter was fine, and it was of course, and accident, they were sweet enough to grab my daughter's trophy and are headed over this afternoon so they can see her) and the commissioner of the softball league.

In all of this, the thing she is most delighted about is that she was supposed to get her palette expander put in tomorrow morning, but we are postponing that until she is cleared by the doctor and healed up.  Love that she found the silver (literally!) lining.



Monday, June 11, 2012

Almost There!

We are in the home stretch.

Things are winding down.

It's funny, that in the thick of it all, I cannot wait for this time.  Now that it's here, I already miss it.  You can't win with me, that should be obvious.

Last week, my son had his end of the year band concert.  I am always amazed at the musical talent the students in our school have.  My son plays the drums.  I love seeing all the different types of drums that they get to play.  I love when he plays the snare drum though.  Something about that rat-a-tat-tat, love it.

This year, he played the triangle during one of the numbers.  At first, I though there would be a couple of dings here and there, but during "The Pink Panther Theme Song" and "The Simpsons"  he was going to town!  It was really cool, I was quite amazed.  I know he works hard practicing all year and it's nice to get to see it all come together.

My daughter also had her dance recital over the weekend.  I love watching her dance.  She performed in three numbers, tap, ballet and hip-hop.  My parents were able to come to the recital this year and my mom cried while my daughter danced her ballet number.  She really looks so sweet and happy up on stage.

When we were getting ready before the show, I announced it was time to do her hair and make-up and get dressed.  She squealed, "Oh yes, it's my time to shine!"  I can't help but think this stems from years of being dragged to all her brother's events and finally feeling proud that she has her own things for us to attend now.

For her hip-hop number, there was a part where all the kids gather in a semi-circle and each kid, or a couple of kids, get to do a trick.  My daughter really, really, really wanted to do "the worm".  She was so excited when her teacher said she could.  I kid you not, I teared up.  I am just amazed at her confidence and ability, she really rocked the worm.

After everyone comes out and takes their bow, there are a few awards handed out.  There are some trophies for outstanding achievements.  There are some class awards for classes that work well together and work hard.  There are also honorable mention medals for students as well.

I saw my daughter's teacher get up and award a trophy to one of the older girls for ballet and then she went to hand out a medal for ballet.  I literally gasped when I heard my daughter's name called.  I was so so proud of her and I could tell by her beaming adorable fade that she was quite proud of herself as well.  It's not something we will soon forget.

So now we have a softball closing day and ceremony and soon enough, baseball season will be ending and we can enjoy the long. lazy days of summer.  I will miss you crazy spring, but I will see you again, sooner that I think.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Pantry Raid

We have no food in the house.

Except for we have a ton of food in the house.

I am in a dinner slump.  I think it's because we've been so busy, I have been making things that are quick and easy and portable.

I cleaned and organized my front closet today .  I keep extra food in there, stuff that maybe there was a good deal on, but I can't fit in my cabinets.  I have 3 shelves and they're full.  The cabinet I keep food in isn't full, but it's certainly not empty.

Yet, my family keeps asking when I'm going grocery shopping. 

I have decided.  I'm not.

I will go out and buy produce and other fresh items that we need, but other than that I am challenging my family to eat what we have.

Really, I'm challenging myself.  I'm the one who is going to be googling what I can make with tomato soup and kidney beans.  Kidney bean tomato soup for everyone!  I have a feeling that this is going to go over like a lead balloon. 

There's a reason I bought this food and I don't want to be wasteful and I'm not a doomsday prepper or an extreme coupon-er.  I just want all this stuff out of here and we can make a fresh start.

My daughter will really be the one to fight it the most.  She likes what she likes when she likes it, oh yes, sometimes she only likes things on certain days.  I think I will adopt my father-in-law's rule to get me through this.  "This is what's for dinner, if you don't like it, make yourself a peanut butter sandwich and go to bed."  I may be more lenient on the "go to bed" part.

My son will pretty much eat whatever we put in front of him.  He's really going to be helpful in the coming weeks. 

So what do you think?  Will we make it?  How long before I'm sick of my own challenge?

All this being said, we are ordering Thai food tonight.  My parents are coming over and we're all headed out to my son's band concert.  I hope the memories of the delicious food thaid (get it, tide) me over until I'm free to shop again.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

1,000 Words

I am exhausted.  My daughter had her dress rehearsal for dance followed by a rush across town for her softball game.

In between activities, I was thinking how I love how well-rounded she is and how it's all going so fast.

Since I'm too tired to be clever, here's some pictures from when her brother was away and we had some time just with her.  Supposedly, they're worth a thousand words...












Monday, June 4, 2012

Oh-ee-yeah.. Oh-ee-yoh...

I am spiraling out of control.

I am in a complete tailspin and not the fun kind where Baloo the Bear and friends help me out of a crazy jam.

I know this is a crazy time of year, I spend most Sundays getting my ducks in a row and making sure I am prepared for the week ahead.

Then I get an email that changes my entire schedule.

I would love to say that I calmly take a deep breath and think, "OK, challenge, I accept you and we're going to get through this together."

That is not the case.  I immediately deem the change impossible.  It's as if someone has pulled the rug out from underneath me.  My mind can't even accept the change, it's like my entire body rejects the new information.

I know this seems like a dramatic reaction, but I can't help it!  As much as I try to be laid back and relaxed about life, I just don't handle this aspect very well at all. 

I literally say out loud to myself, "OK Jenn, let's not freak out."  This is usually after I've already freaked out.  So, not so helpful.

Unfortunately, anyone who comes across me in panic mode is subjected to me attempting  trying to wrap my head around how I have to rearrange everything.  It's not a pretty sight.  There's shock and denial, guilt, anger, bargaining, depression, wait, this is starting to sound like the stages of grief.  I guess it kind of is.  I am grieving over the loss of my beautifully planned week.

A lot of my aggravation comes from disappointment.  For instance, this week, I thought that we were all going to be able to watch my daughter's last softball game.  This season has been saturated (literally) with cancellations due to weather.  Between that and every one's busy schedule, I think all 4 of us have been to 2 of her games.  To clarify, I've been at all of them, but it's been near impossible for all four of us to be there together.

Unfortunately, her brother's baseball season has suffered as well, so now there is a make-up game scheduled for the same time as her last game.  So that means once again, we have to divide and conquer.  I know this isn't life altering, but it is disappointing, we like to root each other on.

I have managed to rework the schedule, all my ducks are lined up....however, I think I'll check my email just in case.