I Want To Stop My Kids From Growing Up!

It’s a fact: I have decided that I need to figure out a way to freeze time so that I can literally stop my kids from growing up. Remember last week when I told you I would do anything to spend one more afternoon at the park with my babies? Well now I just want to make them stop growing all together.

When Ethan was in kindergarten, I would walk him up to the gate every afternoon and say goodbye. I would watch him until he started walking to his class and I was so excited that he was finally away from the house for a few hours! It sounds bad, but most moms with kids that age (and two smaller ones!) probably understand what I mean.

We would get to that gate, and he would hug me and kiss me and tell me how much he loved me and never wanted to leave me. And it was pretty much the same thing in first grade. And I guess at the beginning of second grade, too.

Somewhere during the first and second trimesters of second grade (with the exception of the love note I wrote him), he decided that hugging and kissing and telling me that he loved me was not very cool. I would drop him off in “The Circle” (he did NOT want me walking him to the gate!), he would get out of the car, and I would say “OK! Have a great day! I love you buddy.” and he would look at me, scowl, and walk away. It really hurt me!

Want to stop your kids growing up? Me too! Here's why I'll miss their elementary school years.

My favorite picture of me and my favorite boy. Find out why here.

That was enough. ENOUGH. I wanted to stop my kids from growing up anymore. RIGHT.THEN.AND.THERE.

One night, I finally broke down and asked him to tell me why he wouldn’t say “I love you” to me when I dropped him off. He said it was embarrassing and that he didn’t want anybody to make fun of him. I told him that I understood, and that I wouldn’t do it anymore. It killed me.

The next morning, I dropped him off and told him to have a great day. I didn’t say anything else, but I did blow him a kiss. He gave me the scowl, and closed the door.

But then something wonderful happened.

He turned back around and looked at me and mouthed “I love you”.  He may or may not have surveyed the scene before saying it to make sure that none of his friends were around, but I was ecstatic!

And every morning since then when I drop him off, I say the same thing, and he shuts the door. And then turns back around to tell me that he loves me.

It’s official…he can stop growing right now. I can’t imagine loving that kid anymore than I already do, but every day makes me love him more and more. I don’t want those teenage years to come. At all.

Wishing For Just One More Afternoon At The Park

This morning, after dropping the girls off at kindergarten, I was driving to the grocery store and passed the park. The park where each of my babies sat in a swing for the first time. The park that has the slide that I have a picture of each of them sitting on with static hair. The park where I used to take them all for afternoon picnics, long before second grade and kindergarten and preschool.

I passed by that park, and longed for just one more afternoon with those toddlers that have since turned into children.

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I remember how much I hated having to push swings over and over again until I finally said no more, while they begged for just a little bit longer. I remember that I had other more “important” things to do rather than take them to the park (again). I used to prefer them to sit and watch TV or play outside instead of another afternoon at the park.

And now? I would do almost anything to have just one more afternoon with those babies that used to love the park.

I look back, and realize how much time I wasted with them as I wished time would hurry up and pass…wanting them to get bigger. Wanting them to get through the Terrible Twos stage and the cling-on-to-mommy-constantly stage. I wished all of that time away – I took it for granted. And now I regret it.

Because I would love to spend just one more afternoon at the park with those little people that Ethan, and Lila, and Mia were just a few years ago.

And I’ll use this as a reminder to enjoy them each day, even on the bad days, because time is passing much too quickly and before I know it, they’ll be all grown up.

Disclosure: Written with tears tumbling down my cheeks and full of regret for all of those times that I wished them big.

When Did The Girls Get So Big?

This morning started out the same as any other morning. The kids woke up, had some breakfast, and chaos ensued when trying to get Ethan ready 10 minutes before he had to run out the door for school.

The girls and I worked on their homework and practiced sight words. We read a book and sang a few songs. They helped me pack lunches, and then we went upstairs to get them ready for school.

They picked out their own outfits and got dressed by themselves. They told me how they wanted to wear their hair. They put on their socks and shoes. And then we went out to check to see what was growing in the planter box they helped me plant.

When they turned back towards me, this is what I saw:

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When did they get so big? Weren’t they just this big?

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Almost five years ago to the day.

I keep thinking that I want them to grow up, and then I am surprised on a daily basis by how fast they really are doing it. I look at the picture I took of them this morning, and I don’t see babies or toddlers. I see beautiful little girls. Independent little girls who can’t seem to get enough learning and information or feed their curiosity fast enough. I’m so proud of them.

I know I wrote about this same thing recently, but I just couldn’t believe it this morning when those big little girls turned around this morning.

It all just goes so fast.

You Know You Are A Grown Up When… Livin’ #TheGoudaLife

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Wendy’s®. All opinions expressed are my own. How do you know that you’re a grown up?

My niece graduated from high school in May. The niece I still remember as a baby. The one who everybody says looks like I did when I was her age. The one who seems like a kid to me, even though at that age I thought I was so grown up.

Which of course had me thinking about what being a grown up actually means, and I’m still not sure! I don’t feel old enough to be a grown up, but I know that I am. So in my old meme You Know You’re a Mom When… fashion, here are 10 funny ways that I know for sure that I’m a grown up. What would you add to the list?

How do you know when you are officially grown up? Here are 10 funny ways that I know I'm now an adult. What would you add to the list? #TheGoudaLife

You Know You’re a Grown Up When…

1. You look forward to buying your kids all of your old favorite toys from when you were a kid. Barbie Dream House anyone?

2. You try to play Dodge Ball with the kids, and realize you are too old and out of shape to keep up with them.

3. You get to re-read all of your old favorite books because you read them to the kids.

4. Now instead of coveting your friend’s expensive brand name jeans, you want her brand new Dyson vacuum cleaner.

5. A weekend in Las Vegas no longer consists of finally deciding to go to bed when the sun comes up.

6. You get to introduce your nieces and nephews to movies like Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Better Off Dead, and Pretty In Pink. All the movies you will still watch anytime they come on TV.

7. The styles that were “in” when you were a teen are making a comeback. Like Doc Marten’s. I still have my 20+ year old pair.

8. You realize that a song the kids like on the radio is a remake of a song that was popular when you were in high school, and the kids are amazed that you know all of the words. And you will often hear songs from back in the day now referred to as “Classic Rock.”

9. Girls Night Out is dinner and a movie and ends at 10 PM. 10 PM is when all of you used to meet up to hit the clubs and stay out until 3 AM.

10. You still like to go to your old favorite fast food restaurants, like Wendy’s®, but get grown up food like the Smoked Gouda Chicken on Brioche.

How do you know when you are officially grown up? Here are 10 funny ways that I know I'm now an adult. What would you add to the list? #TheGoudaLife

Have you tried Wendy’s® new Smoked Gouda Chicken on Brioche? It is SO.GOOD. It’s packed with grown up flavors without a huge grown up price tag. How does this sound?

  • A thick, creamy Dijon aioli with a tangy mustard finish
  • A smoked, mild and rich Gouda cheese
  • A sweet caramelized onion sauce made from puréed caramelized onions
  • A warm, lightly breaded chicken breast
  • Sliced red onions
  • Fresh spring mix
  • …All served on a toasted Brioche bun.
  • Wendy’s® is no stranger to introducing a higher standard of cheese to their menu, with past sandwiches featuring Asiago, Cheddar and Muenster. For a cheese lover like me, that’s heaven! I also like that they have several high quality menu items, like natural cheeses, aiolis and artisan breads, that you don’t find at many other fast food restaurants.

    You can try the Smoked Gouda Chicken on Brioche through the end of September for just $4.79! Go grab a sandwich that appeals to your maturing tastes but doesn’t ask you to change you who really are. You’ll never eat any of those other boring chicken sandwiches again after you get a taste of #TheGoudaLife!

    Be young. Eat grown up.

    Are you going to try Wendy’s® Smoked Gouda Chicken on Brioche?

    How do you know when you are officially grown up? Here are 10 funny ways that I know I'm now an adult. What would you add to the list? #TheGoudaLife

    This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Wendy’s®
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    Wordless Wednesday: What Happens When You Get Away Without The Kids

    Okay…not totally wordless. This past weekend Jason and I escaped, ahem I mean got away, for a weekend with friends – without the kids! It’s the first time in a couple of years we’ve been able to do it, and we had a blast. There were four couples, lots and lots of laughs, gorgeous weather on the river, probably too many cocktails, and staying up way too late.

    And this is what it looks like when you get away with your favorite people for the weekend. We are at Topock 66 where we stopped for a cocktail and to cool off.

    no-kids

    That’s my sister in front taking our picture. I’m in the black cover up drinking a Jager and Monster. Our friend Winter (we’ve known her since we were kids and we refer to her as a sister. I’ve also written about her before; one of my all-time favorite memories is with her!) is behind me drinking a vodka and soda. I guess we’re all hootin’ and hollerin’ because we are so excited to be kid-free. Jason’s back there too drinking a Shock Top beer. Go big or go home, people…though it is now three days later and I still haven’t recovered from the craziness. That kind of fun with good friends is good for the soul.

    PS – This is one of my Top 10 Favorite Pictures Of All Time.

    PSS – Does anybody still do Wordless Wednesday (or in my case, Semi-Wordless Wednesday?)