Press Play {.033}

I haven’t had time to play with my little one in so long. I mean really play. Like, lay on the floor & roll around like goofballs kind of play. I’ve always done something structured with him, which was fun for me cause I’m an adult, but not so much for him. When he came home from daycare he just wanted to play in his own way. He politely asked me to help him turn on the light so he could get his cars and off he went into his toddler dream land, while he was awake. I started to play with him a little, but to be honest I didn’t even realize what I was doing. It was like I was in another world. Just me and him. No homework. No phone. No responsibilities. Then, something clicked and I got up to look something up on the computer. I was planning on coming right back. But, realistically – how many times do I tell myself that & get caught up? Almost, always.

He was disappointed. Usually he won’t pay me any mind and continue playing by himself. But, this time he said “Come here, this is yours”, handing me the car I was playing with. That broke my heart and I immediately rushed over to finish playing with him. I had so much fun. It was just so interesting to dive into his world. Not, a structured game Mommy made up or anything. But, something that he truly enjoys. I honestly thought he would be super territorial over his coveted cars. Surprisingly (to me anyway), he was so incredibly generous, kind and gentle.  That’s a little snapshot of how he plays with his classmates I guess.

I always knew there was something special about this little boy. But, man – God shows me something more spectacular about him everyday. He’s my little angel on Earth.

Family values are a little like family vacations -— subject to changeable weather and remembered more fondly with the passage of time. Though it rained all week at the beach, it’s often the momentary rainbows that we remember.

 –Leslie Dreyfous, New York Times, Oct. 25, 1992

Mother’s Day Weekend {.032}

The weekend that passed was the best Mother’s Day weekend ever. I got lots of hugs and kisses. Calls from family and friends. Thoughtful gifts. Quality time with my boys. Home made peperoni and green pepper pizza. Random little strawberries in my backyard. And Relaxation. The only bummer was that I realized that I missed my little boy’s Mother’s Day lunch. I mixed up the dates and totally missed it. When I realized what happened, I cried. I told Jayden I was sorry and him saying “It’s okay, Mommy” made me come back to earth and realize that I’m only human trying to do everything and I will forget something or do something wrong. It’s a hard pill to swallow, but instead of wallowing in my mistake. I embraced the fact that he was there with my the entire weekend so we could spend some quality time together.

 “Finding some quiet time in your life, I think, is hugely important.

Mariel Hemingway

No love {.031}

Me: So, Jayden. You know Mother’s Day is coming up right?

Jayden: Yea.

Me: Did you decide what you’re going to get me?

Jayden: Yes.

Me: Well, what is it!?

Jayden: Milk.

Me: Milk?

Jayden: Yes, milk.

Me: Okay. Well, Father’s Day is coming up this summer! What are you going to get Daddy!?

Jayden: A beach.

Me: ::mouth wide open:: A beach?

Jayden: AND milk.

Me: Oh! Okay. Well, good for him then.

Apparently my mothering has only been good enough to warrant a glass of milk and nothing more. Epic fail.


Children remind us to treasure the smallest of gifts, even in the most difficult of times.

-Allen Klein

What’s he gonna be {.029}

The other day Quentin and I were looking at Jayden play. He was playing with cars as usual. He doesn’t get excited about much else.

Quentin said, “I wonder what he’s gonna be when he grows up? A mechanic?”

I’ve thought about the same thing myself. It seems like his main interest is cars. But, has always liked singing & music as well.

I think he’d be fantastic at whatever he chooses to do. He has an infectious personality & isn’t afraid to talk to anyone.

My dad always told me that personality is everything. I certainly believe that because it’s gotten me to where I am now. He works with PhDs on a daily basis who have no personality and eventually they get fired. Not because they aren’t smart. But, because they don’t know the basics about how to interact with another person. For example, interrupting the CEO of their company durring a board meeting to tell him his calculations are wrong. Smart move.

You have to be a people-person to make it in this Country now a days. Credentials are important too. But the two combined are a force to be reckoned with. No one wants a smarty pants that is a nightmare to work with. There usually only a nightmare because they don’t know how to get their point across without offending everyone in the room. At that point their certainly a liability.

I will be uncertain about what Jayden wants to do until the day he tells me “Mommy, I want to be a _______.” That freaks me out because I’m very anal in that way. I want to know everything about everything, even if it’s borderline impossible.

For now, I find peace in knowing that wherever he goes, whatever he chooses to do, he will be successful because he knows how to interact with the people around him. Not because he studies them or has a PhD to say he “knows” all about them, but because he genuinely loves being around them and interacting with them. Knowledge that comes naturally is a gift.

I’ve gotta thank God for that.

We should take care not to make the intellect our god; it has, of course, powerful muscles, but no personality.

 Albert Einstein

Nipples {.028}

Kids have to learn their body parts sooner or later right? You know, the knee bone is connected to the hip bone {or something like that}. Well, sometimes I wish they didn’t because it’s awkward telling your child about their private body parts. The time came where my little man asked me what a private part of his body was and it was not fun.

After I gave Jayden a bath and dried him off with his towel, he started looking down at himself. He started poking his chest until he got to his nipple area. In my head I was already like “Oh Lord, please don’t let him ask me what that is!!!”.

Well, let’s just say that Jesus didn’t’ listen to me that time. Jayden asked me what it was. The problem is that he is so darn cute I tell him everything and anything. He asks me questions in his adorable little voice and looks up at me with those huge brown eyes and this time was no different.

“Whas is dis?!”, he asked. I hesitated. I asked “What the hell is it Nicole? You’ve gotta tell him something! A raisin? No, he’ll try to eat it. A button? No, he won’t stop playing with it.”

“A nipple!” I said with enthusiasm.

“A nipple?” he said, with a confused look on his face.

“Yes, a nipple.” I was determined to say that for the last time. It was just getting too awkward for me.

“It’s a nipple!” he said. I think he was just excited that he finally knew what those two buttons on his chest were called.

“That’s right.” I said. Trying to cut the conversation short.

Surprisingly enough. That was it. He didn’t talk about it for the rest of the morning. My fear of telling him the truth had been proven to be for no reason at all.

I guess he’s more mature than I think.

Fear is only as deep as the mind allows

Japanese Proverb

I love you {.027}

Goodbye weekend. You went by too fast, yet again. There wasn’t much to you this time, just relaxation, website building and listening to my noisy neighbors move out {yes!}. But, in the same low-key token you have taken on, you have been one of the most monumental weekends of my life. Don’t ask why weekend, I’m getting to that part.

You know that little being that grew inside of me for 8 months and some change? Yes, Jayden. Last night, after we read two books and he snuggled close to his Teddy in bed, he told me something. In fact, he told Quentin and I something pretty amazing {now I’m tearing up about it}.

While curled up in his bed, he looked up at me and said, “Mommy, I love you.” Then, he lifted his head up and said “Daddy, I love you!” It sounds pretty simple right? Wrong.

After Quentin or myself tuck Jayden in for bed, we always tell him that we love him. No matter what. The thing is, since he was born we’ve always said it first. To hear that sweet, innocent, little voice say “I love you” before we even got a chance to mutter it meant everything to me and then some.

I want our son to be loved, I want our son to be loving. Love is hard to teach sometimes because people disappoint you everyday – it’s life. But it’s nice to know that he’s learning how to be selfless and share. Last night he was selfless. He shared his love with us before knowing 100% for sure if he was going to get a response. He gave of himself, put his heart on his sleeve and got so much love in return. That is all life is really about & I pray he continues to do that. The lesson starts with the ones who are the closest to you. It’s weird to think of acts of love as “lessons”. But,  how else are you going to learn to love if no one told you they loved you?

Through the years we’ve taught him how to love & in that one moment he gave me a refresher of what we’ve been showing him. Giving of oneself in any capacity is love.

Love is that condition in which the happiness of

another person is essential to your own.

― Robert A. Heinlein, Stranger in a Strange Land

Baby Number Two? {.026}

Yesterday morning, Quentin and I dropped Jayden off at daycare as usual. I went to help Jayden put his coat away and Quentin went to put his lunch box in the refrigerator. This morning in particular, Jayden’s teacher was doing before care & we always get chatting ’cause she is amazingly nice & friendly. Love her to death! So we were chatting away and she tells me that Jayden has been telling her things about me. So, I’m deathly afraid that it’s something like “Mommy doesn’t love me.” or “My Mommy’s mean”, you know something like that because boy was he being a brat that morning.

I ask her what it is and she tells me that Jayden has been saying that there is a baby in my belly! WHAT?! Yes, I she said it. It made me second-guess my own body for a second. Before I answered her I said in my head “Wait, am I pregnant!?” I snapped back to the reality that I knew I wasn’t. I told her that I wasn’t pregnant and that we weren’t planning to start trying. She looked surprised and said that Jayden has been saying and I quote “Baby, Mommy’s belly!”

Well, if that wasn’t a hint that he wants a permanent playmate I don’t know what is. Trust me if things weren’t so crazy right now, baby number two would certainly be on the way. But, I think when Jayden is in Kindergarten or First Grade it will be the perfect time. Who knows, by that time we might not want another one.

For now, Jayden will just have to be satisfied with his best friend, Teddy.

I don’t care how poor a man is; if he has family, he’s rich.” 

Dan Wilcox and Thad Mumford, “Identity Crisis,” M*A*S*H


Hello Organization! Goodbye Piles of Crap! {.025}



Quentin and I have been battling the endless piles of paper that have been taking over our dining room and frankly I’m tired of it! If it’s not in the dining room, it’s in the bedroom and it just travels around the house never to find a place safe and sound in our filing cabinet.

I’ll be honest. This is partly {okay, mostly} attributed to the fact that I am not the most organized person on the whole planet. I believe that I could keep a good system up, if there is one to begin with. Creating a good system is always the first step. Paper filing just isn’t working for us when it comes to that. There are so many places one piece of paper could be and the status of those pieces of paper is always changing. For example, if there is a bill that needs to be paid I put in the “To Be Paid” folder. Say I pay it the next day, but Quentin doesn’t know that ‘cause I didn’t get to tell him for whatever reason. He would be looking for that piece of paper in the “To Be Paid” file folder when it would be in the file folder with the company’s name on it {AT&T, etc.}. If the piece of paper isn’t where we think it should be we end up looking through the whole file folder or calling the other one saying “Do you know where XYZ paper is!?” It wastes so much time and sometimes I can’t remember which file folder I put it in. I know where it should be. But, if I’m in a rush it will go in the wrong folder and that welcomes more confusion.

The bottom line is we are getting to dang old to remember where we put every single little piece of paper, especially being parents. You know what I’m talking about Moms and Dads. We have to deal with those random pieces of paper get filed in the weirdest places that don’t really help you find that paper later. I’m talking immunization records, prescriptions, growth charts, artwork, letters from school, receipts for gifts, permission slips, report cards, newsletters, BLAH, BLAH.

Enough about problems. Here comes the problem solvers. I have been using Evernote religiously for about 4 or 5 months now & it has seriously changed my digital life for the better. Basically anything that can be typed or copied and pasted is in Evernote for me to access on my iPhone whenever I needed and emailed to whoever else might need it. If you haven’t checked it out it is a must! Oh & did I mention it’s FREE!? Yea – amazing.

Now here comes the paper life saver – the Doxie Go + Wifi. Like I mentioned earlier. We have a lot of paper that enters our lives. Some pieces of paper that aren’t going to get used but once or twice a year, but we can never find it when those times come. So the Doxie is a scanner that detects all of the text in whatever you scanned so it’s searchable!

So, take the portability and organization of Evernote with the ease of use and digitizing features of the Doxie Go & you have your own homemade digital filing cabinet! This means wherever your phone is {or an internet connected computer for that matter} all of your files are there with you. Great for emergencies or those times where you forget papers at home. The digital age is here people & we are certainly choosing to embrace it. I’ve gotten a lot of negative feedback on the decision to go paperless, but I think it’s what’s best for our busy family. Most people I’ve gotten the feedback from aren’t to tech savvy and too scared to take the plunge themselves. To be successful in anything you have to take some sort of risk. I certainly plan to back all of my files up with CrashPlan to avoid any of those palm-to-forehead moments. But I’m pretty excited to get started.

My goal is for us to be paperless going into 2013! Wish us luck!

It has become appallingly obvious that our technology

has exceeded our humanity.

Albert Einstein

No! {.024}


I knew it was coming sooner or later, but for some reason I didn’t think it would be so soon. It seems as if Jayden said in his mind “I’m going to wait until I’m three & then I’m going to start saying ‘No’ to everything my Mommy asks me and tells me to do”.
Yes, ladies and gentleman of the Jury. Jayden Alexander is guilty of uttering ‘No’ {or shaking his head no – which is always more entertaining}every third word. At three I would certainly have to say that he has a good sense of “self”. He knows what he likes, he knows who he likes to be around, what he likes to do, what his interests are, who his friends at school are, his favoite foods and all of thoes fun attributes that make up a regular person. It’s just fun to see such a little thing be so sure of himself.
Now, if you paid attention to the last sentence in the first paragraph, you would notice that only Mommy is mentioned in the ‘people to ignore’ category. Jury, it just got worse. He has chosen a favorite and it’s not me {insert tears here}! He will say “No” to me all day long. Sample dialoge:
Me: “Ready to go to bed?”
Jayden: “{Shakes head no very slowly]”
Me: “Want some oatmeal?”
Jayden: “Noooo.”
Me: “Let’s take a bath!”
Jayden: “No.”
Me: “Come go potty.”
Jayden: “Noo no.”
Hopefully this phase will pass. Until then, headaches and extra coercing comense!
You can learn many things from children.
How much patience you have, for instance.
Franklin P. Jones