Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Shout out to all the single parents!....It really does take a village

My week always consists of being a "single mom" for 3 straight days while Ryan is at work.  No biggie.  I have my routine.  We survive.  3 days at home I can do, no problem.  3 days out of town....without Ryan....with 4 kids...(under the age of 4), now THAT is a different ball game.

Ryan worked this past weekend.  The weekend of our annual trip to southern California for Christmas parties on my Mom's side and my Dad's side.  My sister, my WONDERFUL sister, was able to take the day off on Friday and travel down with me so if the kids needed some assistance I didn't need to pull over. (although we did need to do that once for Jacob to go pee on the side of the road....pee in the pants accident averted!)

Let me just say, I don't have very many pictures from the weekend but I do have bags under my eyes!  I didn't get very much sleep, everything seems like a blur, the kids did fairly well behavior wise, and they did excellent in the car! But this trip made me 1) appreciate my sister (and the rest of my family, a.k.a the village) for helping me out so much! 2) it gave me an increased love for Ryan, because now I truly see everything that he does for me and the kids, life without him would be hard! and 3) I have a new respect for all the parents who do this alone day in and day out.  Kudos to you!

For a trip with kids you have to be able to think ahead!  After a long day in the car, before even attempting to go to my Grandmas house with 3 full of energy kiddos, we found a park and let them loose for a good 45 minutes or so.  Boy did they need it! Thank you to the Maps App and the search for "nearby parks" we found this perfect park for some energy release.

We slept at my Grandma's house both Friday night and Saturday night.
Cruz has gotten into this HORRIBLE habit of waking up at 5:45.  His internal clock is on the dot every morning!  Sometimes a pacifier and a pat on his back will  get him back to sleep and sometimes it is a no go.  Well Saturday morning was one of those no go mornings.  So in my attempts to keep him quiet I took him out of his pack and play and into the bed that I was sharing with the crazy 2 year old Jacob (who fell out of the bed a total of 3 times over the weekend)  Anyway, I have Cruz laying next to me which of course wakes up Jacob and he is loving that he is both sharing a bed with mommy and now Cruz is there too!  He keeps kissing Cruz and then he does the cutest thing ever.  I think my favorite memory of the weekend.  He leans over on top of Cruz and whispers "do you want to build a snowman?" ugh so cute! Made me smile even though it was barely 6 o' clock in the morning!

My Grandma Greta hosted Christmas on Saturday (my mom's side)

To keep the boys occupied until it was time to get ready for the party we went on a walk.  My Grandma lives in a neighborhood built on hills.  When we were going up the boys whined and complained and begged me to carry them.  But when we were going down they were all for making it a long walk.  It's hard to explain to little ones that making your way down a hill only means when you turn around you have to make your way back up!  Lessons to be learned.

All ready for the party...I managed to get a picture of all 4 of them!

Cruz loved having a new house to explore

And Lexi loved having a baby around (he is huge...he pretty much covered her up!)

Kids opening their presents

My cousins and brother-in-law took the kids on a second walk (well they called it an adventure, makes it sound more enticing) right before dinner.   All I heard was "mommy break!" haha

Thank you G.G. for hosting such a wonderful family Christmas

Sunday morning we traveled about 45 minutes, to the city my Aunt and Uncle live, for a Christmas party on my Dad's side.  I have hardly any pictures from that day! The tiring weekend was catching up to me!  I don't think I even did my hair. Pulled back in a messy bun was as good as it was going to get.

We again, attempted to burn some energy by taking a nice walk to a park. (my kids love parks, what kids don't?)

We had a wonderful surprise that my cousin was home for the holidays from his service in the Marines.  It was great seeing him and all of my other cousins.

We did a gift exchange amongst the kids and the adults, had lunch, played some outside games and managed to get a group shot!

We headed out on the road around 4:30/5ish.  Took a little over an hour break for dinner.  Lights out and movie off in the van at 9:00 so the kids could sleep.  We were home at 11:00, I was in bed at 12:00 and up Monday morning for work! What a busy but memorable weekend.  I'm glad I made the trek but I'm even more grateful my family was there to help me!  I'm so thankful for my village!!

And so thankful for my Mom (a.k.a Santa's cleaning elf) who came over Monday while I was at work and did the kids laundry, some unpacking, and some cleaning for me!!

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