Sunday, April 29, 2012

A few things about me


About once a month I feel depressed (for a day or two).

About once a month I feel negative and cynical (for a day or three). And today is one of those days.

I don't like rules. (I don't like rules any day of the year, but I'm especially unruly in my cynical moods.)

I have much contempt for authority.

I'm kind of needy... a little bit whiny, and I need validation for pretty much everything. This includes the huge need for my husband to tell me how much he loves me every day.

When I'm in these 'moods' electronics don't work properly for me. I must emit some kind of radioactive signal or something.

My self respect waivers greatly.

I tend to take responsibility for every problem around me. And I apologize for things I shouldn't be apologizing for.

I sometimes feel like I'm not really 'here', only halfway here. The other half of my brain is somewhere else. In a different dimension, I think.

I am not perfect, but I'm working on it.  ;)

<3, Tabi :D

Friday, April 27, 2012

Five Things That Make Me Happy Friday...


< 1. > The Office on Hulu.  < 2. > The Handyman Hubby with his Fix-It face on.  < 3. > A chilly glass of Yellow Tail Chardonnay.  < 4. > My newly sewn pillows.  < 5. > Blue Toenails.

That is all.

<3, Tabi :D
 
 
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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Parent Tip #107


Step 1: Get an iPad  (If you don't have an iPad, use your iPhone.)
Step 2: Download anything/everything by Toca Boca

I swear it will improve your quality of life.

Our Toca Boca apps entertain our 1 year old, 4 year old, 6 year old AND Mom and Dad. Some games are even multiplayer, appeasing the times when more than one kid wants to have iPad time.

The games are super cute, ad free (!!!) and teach basic necessary skills needed in life and the digital age.

Toca Boca definitely appeals to the part of me that craves aesthetic inner peace.

If you've never heard of Toca Boca, check them out here.

<3, Tabi :D

I am Grateful

They trick you with their low prices and cuteness. Do NOT buy these tissues. They are not functional.
 Maybe I'm still feeling a bit loopy from the combo of Lorazepam and Mucinex, but I am feeling grateful and full of love today... even though my ears hurt and I feel like doo doo.

I am grateful that Target took back the sandpaper they are selling disguised as tissues in super cute boxes. They even took back the open box, half used up!!

I am grateful for Puff Plus with Vicks.

I am grateful my children are content to play video games so I can sit here and rest a bit.

I am grateful that the text conversation I had earlier went well regarding something that has been weighing heavy on my heart for a very long time now. (apologies for the vagueness, but it's necessary)

I am grateful that my husband understands and forgives my bouts of grumpiness.

I am grateful that it's Thursday and that means no laundry.

I am grateful that I have a partner in crime to go through my Vegan initiations with me. (I'm talking about you, Nicole.)

I am grateful it's not a bath/shower night. I loathe taking showers sometimes. I'm a weirdo.

I am grateful that today, Riley's rash looks awesome. Fingers crossed it stays looking good.

If I haven't told you lately... I love you. I mean it.

What are you grateful for today?

<3, Tabi :D

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Super Dad

Roxy, post shower
So I woke up this morning with half my head filled with fluid. Tylenol, Advil and Mucinex couldn't make the pain or the leaky nose go away. Yet, I powered through 2 hours at the YMCA, lunch with the kids, cleaning up an accident in a bed, picking up a kindergartener, library, errands at Target and afternoon snacks. Then, I laid down to rest, just for a moment.

Only the problem was, I couldn't get back up. I had things to do, on my unfinished list were to make dinner and bathe the children.

5:00 came and went, I had a 1 year old happily playing Toca Boca next to me on my bed and two children growing tired of the video game they were playing. Those same two children had already came to me begging for snacks and I suspect they had already secretly raided their candy stashes. They were beginning to waste away to nothing.

Okay, I'll get up. Maybe some more Advil and an afternoon latte will be enough motivation. I was moving like a slug, but I was trying. And I was failing to get much accomplished at all... What will happen to these 3 poor starving sweet little children??

Just when all hope seemed to be diminished, our superhero makes his appearance. Christopher to the rescue! He came home, made a fabulous dinner, showered the children and put them to bed. The cherry on top? While I was showering, he mended his own jeans... with the sewing machine! A man of many talents.

I am loving the 5:30 quitting time he's got (for now).

<3, Tabi :D

Monday, April 23, 2012

My Weekend in a Nutshell


<top left> Every night around here is the same. The kids go to bed, Chris and I lounge on the couch watching grown up shows until it's grown up bedtime. Recently, we switched it up and Chris sits on the right side of me instead of the left. We are so exciting.

<top right> This is the Bear. I believe this photo was taken by Zoie, but it's hard to say because this is what he looks like all the time. In real life. He doesn't sit still. Unless there is a stranger around.

<middle> Chalk art by Roxy and Riley. I wish my iPhone had a wide angle lens, because her hair actually extends the whole length of our back porch. In case there is any doubt, yes... that is Rapunzel in a rainbow dress.

<bottom left> Birthday party fun!

<bottom right> My favorite part of the weekend? Going to IKEA (aka Mommy's favorite place) to pick out fabric for my new couch pillows project. Aren't they cute?

Also, the kids want a pet mouse. They have been obsessing over it since Friday. I'm thinking they aren't going to get over this one. Sorry, Mom.

<3, Tabi :D


Friday, April 20, 2012

Five Things That Make Me Happy Friday...

 Snuggles in the morning and snuggles in the afternoon.
  1. The anticipation of Christopher working M-F, 8:30-5:30 next week!! We're going to be like a 1950's (ish) nuclear family!!!! He will be home for family dinner. We get him all weekend. It's going to be so cool.
  2. All the snuggles I've been getting from my ZoBo. She is a snuggle monster.
  3. My new found attitude to relax and let it be. Seriously, I'm not going to stress about it. It is what it is. (Any other cliche's I'm missing here?) 
  4. I asked Riley... when he grows up, who will he marry? His first answer... Mommy. <my heart melted> Don't worry, I explained that he isn't allowed to marry anyone in his family. But it was so cute when he was disappointed he couldn't marry Me, or Roxy or Gramma. <3
  5. These ideas in my head of tearing down our vertical blinds and replacing them with curtains. What? Almost 7 years in this house and we have yet to hang curtains... but aren't these so cute?? ... and I need new pillows for the couch. Bigger, fluffier... so many ideas!!


<3, Tabi :D
 
 
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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Currently.


Developing. A well rounded mostly vegan menu to please the whole family. Vegan cooking is, well... different. It's a much bigger challenge than I had anticipated. The cooking times for most of the meals I've tried out range from 45 minutes to well past 2 hours. It's involved! I'm not going to give in to the easy, higher priced, less nutrition, pre-packaged frozen foods, either. I'm getting there, and it does seem to be getting easier every day.

For you curious folks, our Vegan Adventure menu this week looks like this:
  • Couscous with Chickpeas and Tomatoes (DEELISH!)
  • Vegan Enchiladas (OMG, I wanted to eat the whole casserole dish full, they were so yummy)
  • Brussels Sprouts with Garlic Aioli with Baked Potatoes (tonight's dish)
  • Falafel Balls with Lo Mein type noodles (NOTE: Falafel balls were a falafel FAIL!)
  • Vegan Lasagna cupcakes (these I have not attempted yet, excited to try them out tomorrow!)
Watching. We honestly don't watch much TV around here. However, after the children's are slumbering, we have been known to watch Game of Thrones (so addictive). The first episode of this new season seriously made me ponder quitting GOT... with all the infanticide and all...
Also, I just finished up watching the last episode of The United States of Tara. We don't have cable, so pretty much everything is watched via Hulu or streamed to us via Netflix. If there is something I'm missing and should be watching let me know as Tara has left a void that needs to be filled in my nighttime routine. Oh, and New Girl!! I love me some Schmidt. <3

Working On. Bikini season is upon us here in Florida, and I'm determined to be a hot mama at the YMCA splash pool this year. I've been seriously busting my butt at the gym 3 to 4 times a week these past few months. And I do have to say I'm proud of what my booty is doing these days. It's so well rounded.  ;)

The Puzzle I can't Crack. Riley's face rash is seriously my biggest enigma. He's been to the pediatrician and the dermatologist. He's been allergy tested... I don't know what else the doctors can do. It seems to me they are just throwing whatever popular and pricey creams, etc at us to see what sticks. His allergy test came back he was allergic to dust and milk. Well, we've cut out all his milk in his diet and dust regularly. Use the 4 creams as directed and in the almost half a year since this started, the silly rash has yet to clear up 100%. Let me project to you how frustrated I am... >.<

Listening To. Pandora, mostly... to be less vague: my Three Little Birds channel, my No Doubt channel and my Caspar Babypants channel. In that order of amount of playtime. I'm loving my ska, Lily Allen and of course Reggae.

Procrastinating. Cameron's 10th birthday is coming up in 3 weeks. Guess what kind of party he wants... Star Wars... If you recall, it's been done for the Bear and then again for my Roxy. What can I do to switch it up this time? This is why I'm procrastinating it...
(but if you know me, I love all things Star Wars, so I am definitely up for the challenge, just not ready to jump in... yet!)

Wishing. That I could at least see the light at the end of our financial woes tunnel. The light is there, it has to be. I'm just afraid that we haven't hit rock bottom yet. And that really scares me the crap. But the upside is, that we are NOT (thank the universe) one of those couples who fight about money! My family is totally unaffected, at this point, by our financial state. I just hope we never get to that point.

Anticipating. Summertime!! Beach time. Pool time. No school. And my little kiddies to myself all day, every day. <3


This post was inspired by Sometimes Sweet. Thanks for the inspiration!

<3, Tabi :D



You know you make a great parenting team when...

A hot little couple turned A rocking parenting team.
... last night, we went through the usual bedtime routine and 3 kids were snuggling down to slumber town. Then the coughing started. I was laying on the couch settling Zoie, Christopher was in the Bear's room, settling a wiggly Bear and Roxy was in her bed coughing up a storm.

Step 1: We told Roxy to go get a glass of water.

Water didn't help.

Step 2: I <quietly> yell out to Christopher to turn the humidifier on in the girls' room.

Humidifier didn't seem to do the trick, either.

Step 3: Both of us get up, Chris instinctively grabs the baby Vick's. I go for a spoonful of honey, followed by a teaspoon of this magic stuff.

15 minutes later, Roxy is drifting away to dreamland, coughing subsided. Her parents are quietly high fiving in the living room.

Yup. We rock at this parenting gig.

<3, Tabi :D

My look today styled by Zoie.






Tuesday, April 17, 2012

10 Instagrams

Today I was inspired to take on the challenge to Instagram 10 photos.

It was a normal Tuesday for me. Normal Tuesday = gym, laundry, homework, dinner... nothing spectacularly photo worthy. So, it was quite the challenge to try and get some interesting and different-ish photos.

Here's what I came up with.


I make such cute babies. This picture was actually snapped last night after the kids' shower. But I posted it this morning. It counts! And she looked so adorable sitting there all squeaky clean in her fuzzy chickadee towel.


Challenge completed! And I rocked it! Right?!?

Later Alligators.

<3, Tabi :D


Sunday, April 15, 2012

Parent Tip #106

Whenever possible, eat dinner as a family at the table, no distractions.


It's simple, yet effective. We have a rule about no toys at the table. Everyone eats the same meal. And a new tradition we started a few weeks back is that everyone has to talk about one thing they learned today.

I love our dinner conversations. Some are silly. Some are interesting. Some are life altering.

What are some of your dinner rules/routines?


<3, Tabi :D


Saturday, April 14, 2012

Cabin Fever

I catch cabin fever FAST! It's 3:47 pm and I haven't been out of the house all day and I'm going crazy. I had a few plans to get out and have fun... but sadly, my plans are squashed.

Plan 1: Take kids to the splash park.
Problem: No one but me (and maybe Zoie) wants to go to the splash park.

Plan 2: Bike Ride
Problem: Cameron just started puking.

Plan 3: Make Journals and head out to the trail and sit and draw stuff that inspires us in nature.
Problem: Cameron has low temp and nauseous.

So... it's couch potato/cartoon day for the kidlets while I try and find ways to amuse myself.

But, we did make those journals! See? They came out super cute.

 (journal inspiration found here)

Now for the bigger problem... what's for dinner???

<3, Tabi :D


Friday, April 13, 2012

Five Things That Make Me Happy Friday...

... on this Friday the 13th!!! WooooooOOOOoooooOO...

  1. I love my husband. He doesn't get upset when I laugh at him. He's a good sport. He sent me the picture to the left (above) from when he woke up, then the right picture (above) after a shower and forgotten hair gel from his lunch break. So, today he went from a hungover rockabilly guy to some kind of lumberjack. He's so cute.
  2. I remember a time when Friday the 13th freaked me the eff out. I'm not sure what changed, but I'm over my friggatriskaidekaphobia. (But that doesn't mean I'm going to go walk under a ladder or hang out with black cats or anything.)  So... Yay for kicking one of my phobias!!
  3. Roxy brought home her report card today, and I am happy to report that she is a straight E for Excellent student all the way down the board. Go Roxy!!
  4.  Joel McHale on Kelly Live! I <3 me some Joel McHale. He's just so cute and funny and tall... In case you missed it, click here to view the host chat... my favorite part of the show.
  5. Smoothies!! I love smoothies and have had some awesome luck with my smoothie creativity lately, too. My favorite new invention is strawberries + strawberry syrup + one banana + soy milk + ice. Mmmmmm!
I hope you all have a wonderful Friday the 13th.
We are!! xo

<3, Tabi :D
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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Tree Park

We are lucky to live super close to a park we lovingly call Tree Park. It's the park we have visited most often by far and thus has created some lovely memories for us. We've gone on a whim, we've planned play dates, held multiple birthday parties and gotten really dirty at Tree Park. We <3 Tree Park.

Here are some shots from yesterday's visit.


Mommy and Daddy's reward for taking kids to Tree Park? Three kids quietly looking at books (unrequestedly looking at books, at that), while adults are cleaning up dinner.

<3, Tabi :D

P.S. Excuse my awful video skills while trying to watch 3 kids in a parking lot. And excuse the annoying person in the background honking at her kid, but here's a little video I shot of Christopher being a bad influence to the Bear.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

While I'm sitting here feeling like a Martian...


Something is going on in my head and/or my body. I don't know what exactly it is and so it is hard to explain... I feel like I need to relax and let it happen. I'm not going to worry, just going to let it be. Perhaps it's as simple as an inkling of this virus my little two are going through... perhaps...

So, while my brain is closed for maintenance (rewiring?), I thought I'd make a happy little list of some positive things we've got going on around the Deneweth House.

  • Christopher applied for and got a new job within his current company! Promotion! He even gets to move to a different building in the Progressive compound. :)
  • Roxy is doing so well in school, reading like a first grader, pouring out her creativity in making books and pictures every day. She is happy in this school and I'm glad she feels comfortable in an institution I was so worried she'd get buried in.
  • Riley is growing up into such a handsome little freckle faced boy. And such a gentleman! I'm starting to understand already why Mommas are so critical of the girls their little boys bring home.
  • Zoie (who is feeling much better today) is starting to 'talk' in the cutest way. I don't remember the other two doing this kind of talking. It's like she's making up her own little language. And she's definitely developed her shoe fetish... a stage the other two went through, and I remember so well. I guess all three of my children got the Aunt Lisa/shoe fetish gene.
  • I'm happy to report we've been successful vegetarians for over a month now! The new menu developing around here is so refreshing.
  • I know bankruptcy is supposed to be bad, but now that we are into it, I see it as a fresh start. We need this fresh start so badly. The suppression of the debt we were drowning in was so heavy. At this point, it's still there, but I feel like it's backed off slightly already. 
  • I am so happy to have made the choice to stay home and Mother my children. I wouldn't trade this past year and a half in for any credit score. This line of work has definitely been the most rewarding, I've learned the most from it and grown the most from it. I can't wait to see where it brings me. I'm so up for the challenge that lies ahead. (So this last one was more of a reflection, but it's positive to reflect on your choices, and more positive to feel good about them.)

Everyone have a wonderful, happy Tuesday! xo

<3, Tabi :D

 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter Snapshots

I wasn't ready for Easter. We made it through, but I still feel like I wasn't prepared. It's a weird feeling. To top it off, ZoBo was under the weather, poor thing. :(

But, it was a pretty good day. Family. Good Food. Egg Hunt. Bunny Tracks... what more could I ask for? (Well, a healthy bunch of kids... but besides that...)

Here are a few snapshots I did happen to take in commemoration of Easter 2012.


The kids had a blast dying our eggs. They came out GREAT!! Roxy was worried that the Bunny would eat up our cake and cookies we made, so we left him a carrot and a note to make sure he knew the goodies were off limits to him.


We made a Vegan Avocado Chocolate cake. The icing looked Shrek-ish and slimy gobby texturey... but it tasted good!

Roxy made that cute little chickadee all herself out of a cotton ball (I only helped with the hot glue gun button eyes)! It was all her concept and she ran with it. I think he came out super duper cute!!!

As I said, Zoie was under the weather and spent 80% of the day cuddled up in my arms, so I didn't get many pictures. :( But the good news is that she seems to be on the road to recovery today! So fingers crossed she kicks this bug in it's butt!

<3, Tabi :D
 
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Saturday, April 7, 2012

My Baby Sister isn't a Teenager Anymore


Happy Birthday to my baby sister, Lala (aka Trisha). I didn't get her a present, so instead I will dedicate this blog post to her. It's more special this way anyhow. <3

Today, she turns 20. That's 2 decades old. No longer a teenager. <sigh...> In honor of her first day in her 20th year on this planet, I'm listing 20 things about Lala.

If you are reading this and would like to add on to my list, please do so in my comments. I'd love to see what you have to say.

Here goes:
  1.  She was born a preemie due to exploding my Mom's appendix.
  2. She was the teeniest and cutest little 5 pound bundle of cells ever.
  3. She likes penguins.
  4. She has met a monkey.
  5. She loves Ed Norton.
  6. She tortures my father with her liberal views.
  7. My Mother thinks she's a lesbian. (For the record, my Mother also thought I was a lesbian.)
  8. She is a baby whisperer. Seriously, she is the best babysitter ever!
  9. When Roxy turned 3, we went to Disney World. Lala was fighting the flu and got into an argument with a 3 year old Roxy about whether or not Ariel is a princess or not.
  10. She goes to Virginia Wesleyan College and is studying to be a psychology study person, or something. 
  11. She HEARTS Green Day. (One of the things we have in common!)
  12. I am definitely her favorite sister of all time.
  13. She loves snickerdoodles.
  14. She's in a sorority... whatever sororities do...
  15. She hates onions.
  16. Even though she burns easily, I still have to yell at her to put the sunblock on. Every. Single. Time.
  17. Her BFF Cody reminds me a lot of Jack the Pumpkin King Skellington.
  18. She loves Superman.
  19. She's one of those Harry Potter types of nerds.
  20. She lives too far away and needs to switch to a Florida school. A Tampa, FL school to be more specific.
Happy Birthday, little sis! I love you!!!

Don't forget to add to my list in the comments below.

<3,  Tabi :D

 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Five Things That Make Me Happy Friday...

... about this upcoming inevitable Easter that I am so unbelievably unprepared for.

My cuties last Easter. Wow, they look like babies here.
  1. When Roxy mentioned that we should leave a note to the Easter Bunny reminding him that he shouldn't leave his bunny tracks around our house this year because our Riley is allergic to dust. She did say that he could use her slippers if he needed to. I love that she is thoughtful about her brother's allergies.
  2. I'm planning on making a Vegan Chocolate Avocado cake. I love chocolate. I love avocados. I love cake. What could go wrong??
  3. One kid with a milk allergy = less candy to buy! Honestly, most of it never gets eaten anyways. 
  4. Stoked that Christopher offered to go E.B. shopping on his lunch break tomorrow. (Although I'm nervous for him.)
  5. Excited to see Zoie hunting for Easter Eggs. This is the girl that yells at Mommy or Daddy until we clean that spot on the floor... I have an inkling she will be a great egg finder.
Have a Hoppy Easter! xo


<3, Tabi :D
 
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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Vegan Pizza!!

I know, Lisa already told me... it looks like a giant goldfish shaped pizza.
This isn't a food blog post, so I won't post my recipe yet, but...

This was one yummy pizza I put together tonight. It was A LOT of work, but all that work made me super duper proud of my awesome vegan pizza.

Whodathunk that pizza would be 'hard'?? Well, the sauce was homemade. I made the 'mozzarella cheese' (a concoction of cashews, tofu and a bunch of other spices). I made the 'parmesan topping' (walnuts and nutritional yeast concoction). And then chopping up veggies is always a challenge for me. It did take me about 2 hours, start to finish...

I realized, while taking a shower tonight, that I did accomplish a lot. I'm proud of what I did today. I should forgive myself for being a little yelly today to a couple of children who refused to listen.

Not only did I spend 2 hours cooking a pizza (not including the big vegan mess in the kitchen that needed to be cleaned), I also did Body Pump this morning, fed the children a healthy lunch, waited in pick up line, went grocery shopping, stopped by 'Lilly's Garden', washed all the sheets and put all the beds back together, cleaned up the children, read two bedtime books and had them all tucked in and asleep by 8:00.

That's why right now I'm indulging in a glass of Chardonnay and not feeling guilty about it.

My next planned vegan adventures: Stuffed Shells with Garlic Bread and then Seitan Stroganoff with steamed Brussels Sprouts.

At this pace, I don't see how I'm supposed to be a skinny vegan eating this way. ;)

<3, Tabi :D



Monday, April 2, 2012

Tummy Tuck or not to Tummy Tuck?

A girl can dream....
p.s. In NO WAY am I implying that Gwen had work done. I just want abs like dat!
I may or may not delete this post before you get to read it. It's about to get real over here...

I have been obsessing lately over before/after pictures of tummy tucks on various plastic surgery websites. While I'm not a high maintenance kind of chick, I definitely have my own girly insecurities about my body.

I've been working out. A lot. In fact, I've been working my ass off at the gym and definitely seeing results. But the bummer is, I'm kind of coming to the realization that no matter how hard I work out and no matter how much I tweak my diet, I won't be 100% happy with my belly 'fluff'. After 3 pregnancies with 3 full term healthy weighted children (ranging from 7 lb 9 oz to 8 lb 9 oz), I have extra skin and 'thunder' (thunder is what Roxy lovingly has named my stretch marks).

I look at my post pregnancy body and I think I look older. Of course, I'm a little older. But I don't FEEL older. I feel young, and I really am young. Middle age isn't low 30's. I want to wear cute, non pregnancy looking shirts. I want to have a waist. Before I get to my middle age, I want to be able to wear a bikini at the pool or on a sandy beach and not want to hide my fluffy belly from the public.

When Christopher had his family jewels snipped last summer, it kind of sealed the deal that my body won't be going through another pregnancy.

So now I want a tummy tuck.

The devil on my left shoulder is telling me that I need this. If I can figure out a way to raise enough funds to get a tummy tuck, then I would be well on my way to an entrepreneurship. I would have a boost in confidence. I would look sexy and feel sexy.

The angel on my right shoulder is telling me I'm just being vain. My body is over being 'sexy' and I should just move on. I don't need my body to be attractive, my hubs will love me just the same.

That devil sure is sounding better and better these days.

Maybe I can convince the angel that me coming up with the money for a tummy tuck will ultimately help my family.

But... how??? I need a plan. I have set the bar pretty high this time and I need a foolproof plan before burying this idea and filing it under 'just another crazy Tabi dream'.

<3, Tabi :D
P.S.  Don't forget to vote for me on Top Baby Blogs!! Please click on the banner below to vote for me, then click on the cute owl on the left for a positive vote... Or if you didn't like my blog, click on the little owl on the right. :(

It only takes a second, I swear. Thanks so much. :) 
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Sunday, April 1, 2012

We heart Curtis Hixon Park!


After lunch today, we filed all the kids into the van and drove out to Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. I can honestly say I've never had a bad time at Curtis Hixon (aka Squirt Park) and today didn't let me down, either.

Beautiful weather. Happy kids. Lots of stuff to get into. :)

Doesn't that ZoBo look bigger? And cuddlier? She's got this new thing. I can't figure out if it's something she's learned that works to get her what she wants... or if it's just how she expresses her frustration. This thing, there are three stages to it: (1) look down, no eye contact (2) pout the bottom lip out (3) slow whine that leads to full on crying. It's super cute and it breaks my heart. What's a Mom to do but scoop up that little cuddle monster and give her loves and whatever she wants?

But anyways. We had a wonderful, chill little weekend. I hope yours was as lovely as ours.

xo

<3, Tabi :D



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