Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The First of Many Firsts

Molly's first day of preschool was a success! I truly wasn't worried when — at 7 am — she was already asking to get dressed. (School doesn't start until 9:15!) 
The kids in Molly's class were super cute and did so great! All the parents (including me) lined up to take an obligatory photo in front of the school sign. We hung backpacks, gave kisses and said our goodbyes. Our babies are in preschool!

Molly's first day of preschool - 9/9/2014


 Ducky Pond, here I come!  
(With goldfish to share with the whole class during snack time.)


Molly and her new teacher, Miss Amanda. 
Miss Amanda has five (five!) of her own children, all who attended Ducky Pond. We are so excited that she is Molly's teacher this year. 


After dropping Molly off at her first day at her new preschool, I was feeling so grateful that a short walk through a path and then across a street got me to my office in a minute. I can even use my lunch break to pick her up. 


Monday, September 8, 2014

hello Monday. hello Preschool.

Molly starts preschool tomorrow. We are so excited! She'll be going to a new school that is close to home and  just a short walk across the street from my office, making it easy for me to drop off in the morning and pick up in the afternoon. When Molly was about 22 months old we enrolled her in an infant/toddler program at a Montessori school  I loved it! I loved the philosophy. I loved the socialization it offered Molly. We are going to miss all the teachers and her little friends at Montessori. We are looking forward to a new school year. Hello Monday! 

Hello new teacher, Miss Amanda, and new little preschool friends.
Hello new clothes for back to school.
Hello backpack all packed with, well there is really nothing in her backpack tonight, but I am so excited to see what she brings home from her first day! 
Hello goldfish. We are bringing in a snack that all the kids can share at school. 


My girl is growing up so fast, and while I enjoy every new stage, it's bittersweet. You know? 

There are days I reminisce and stare at photos of her when she was itty bitty and just remember how incredibly lucky I felt that this beautiful little baby was mine. And now, I look at how much she has grown over the past three years and think how incredibly lucky I am that she is mine. 

We have a few baby photos around the house and I show her and tell her that I want that baby back and she just fills with laughter because she thinks it is so funny that she is that little baby. 

Tonight — on the night before her first day of preschool — we colored pictures and put them on the fridge. We ate a snack after dinner, an apple that she insisted I not cut up for her and let her eat like a big girl. We took a long bath and painted toe nails. We prayed before bed. We snuggled for a few minutes before she insisted, Mommy, I want to go in my crib now

And just like that, my baby is in preschool. 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

I love you the most

I can't quite remember when Molly became so vocal because I feel like it just happened one day and we were able to hold conversation with her. She understands when we ask questions. She responds to our questions and engages in rather lengthy and fulfilling conversations with us. It really is the best! Here are some recent conversations between us lately...

Molly: "Mommy, where are we going?"
Me: "We are going to the store to pick up some things."
Molly: "Mommy, do you need wine?"
Me: "Umm...not today honey."

So clearly my daughter knows that I like to drink wine! 

Me: "Molly, here are your clothes for today. Let's get dressed."
Molly: "Actually, I want to wear this instead." (As she proceeds to pick out long sleeves and long pants when it is eighty degrees and humid outside.)

The kicker is the word actually. She uses it quite frequently, actually!

our little family - summer 2014

Me: "Molly, it's almost time to go. Let's get ready to go, OK?" (As we proceed to leave a friend or family member's house after our stay.)
Molly: "No not yet, Mommy. Soon."

Molly to me as I am driving her to the babysitter's house in the morning: "Mommy, do you have to go to the TTM to get money for Miss Kerrie?"
That would be the ATM. 

This kid cracks me up lately! Our conversations are pretty hilarious. Sometimes I feel like I'm talking to a twelve year old, as opposed to my sweet little angelic three year old.

She is also loving music lately. Her "most favorite" song is Rude by Magic. What a fun song with a catchy beat! If it comes on the radio while we are in the car driving somewhere she'll ask me to "turn it louder" and then dance while strapped in her car seat with open mouth and a pointy finger. She has many favorite songs and many cool moves!

The best conversations are the ones we have at night right before she goes to sleep. We rock for a bit, pray, and then I place her in her crib and turn on her sound machine. She asks me to rub her back and cover her with her blanket. And then...

Me: "I love you, Molly. Night, night."
Molly: "I love you the most."
Me: "I love to the moon and back. Good night."
Molly: "Good night."
Me: "Good night my love." 


Monday, September 1, 2014

Liberating Working Moms

Hello again! Two blog posts in one day is not the norm for me, but I just couldn't wait to share my exciting news...

I am thrilled to announce that I was selected to participate as a monthly contributor to the Liberating Working Moms site, a blog designed to try get the word out about all the trepidations and rewards that come with being a working mom. LWM covers topics not only stemming from the working mom, but also style, beauty, simplicity, breastfeeding and more. 





I stumbled upon the LWM blog one day and it really resonated with me. I found myself reading post after post, loving what all these ladies had to say, and wondering how I could share my voice with other working moms too. I sent in my submission to become a regular contributor with some ideas I had for blog posts, along with a few samples of my writing, and a few days later heard back from the founder and managing editor, Tracy, that I was selected. 

The really cool thing is that once I learned that I was selected, I went upstairs to my little office area and started to read through the manual and take some notes. Jumping right in! I started writing in my notebook that stays open on my desk at all times. (I usually jot down ideas and things so I don't forget in the open notepad on my desk.) After I wrote down a few things of importance, I flipped back a few pages to my notes from my 30 Days to Clarity workshop and discovered my list of hopes and dreams from the first day of the workshop. 




And right there at the top of the list was a dream to write more. 
(You can't see it in the photo, but this list is dated 12/1/13.)

I wanted to write more. I want to write more. I feel very creative and expressive when I sit down and write. I started blogging six years ago with my first published post on June 10, 2008. Blogging was a way for me to get the word out about life and career coaching, but over the years my blog became more of a personal journal for me and an adventure into pregnancy and motherhood. 

As I looked at my list, there are things I would like to eliminate, things I'd like to cross off — indicating that they've been completed — and things I'd still like to pursue. I've also got new hopes and dreams to add. 
I've started a new list and dated it 12/1/14. 

I am super excited for my new experience as a contributor to LWM and I look forward to connecting with an amazing team of women who have so many wonderful things to share and are a great resource. I hope that you'll head over to the LWM site and check out the awesome team of contributors
Plus look out for my first post coming later this month. 


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Follow on Instagram and Twitter





Hello September

Can you believe that today is September 1? Yea, me neither! This time of year I mourn the summer, but I also crave the back-to-school feeling of structure and schedules. 

Today I am saying hello to a new and super exciting venture for me as a professional. I'm so excited to share it with you! How about some hellos? Linking up with Lisa Leonard, who created hello Mondays as way to welcome a new week with a fresh heart and embrace the imperfectness that is life. 


Hello new preschool! 
Molly is starting a new preschool next week and we went to the Open House to meet her teacher and her other classmates while taking a tour of the new little school. We are so excited!


Hello September calendar filling up with dates and friends and many things to do. 
I am grateful that we can try to achieve a nice balance of business with people to see and things to do. But I also love being at home, enjoying the quiet times and special memories we make in the backyard. 

Hello soaking up summer. 
We went down to the dock the other night and went crabbing. It was fun to see all the people with their nets and buckets, filled with excitement, and families spending time together. 


I enjoyed sitting on the sand listening to the waves crash as the sun set on that lovely summer day.  



Hello food shopping.
Hello packing lunches and preparing dinners.
Hello new shoes for back to school.
Hello crisp summer evenings, although last night was humid and hot here. 
Hello movie time. Have you seen this movie
Our babysitter lent it to us and I got half way through it before I fell asleep. I'm looking forward to finishing it today. 
Hello sleeping in. Thanks Mom for watching Molly! 

Hello September and Happy Labor Day to all. 


I'll be back later on today (two blog posts in one day!) with a special announcement. 



Tuesday, August 12, 2014

On Motherhood: Workday

Do you read Working Mother magazine? I enjoy it very much. 
My August/September issue came last week and I had the chance to read it over the weekend. I enjoy their Workday section, especially in this issue because they interviewed a college president! In my years as a higher education professional, many of the women I have worked for were not mothers. I am loving reading about how the president of a college makes it work.

This post has been inspired by Workday in Working Mother magazine.


{MY JOB}
I am the Director of Alumni Relations at a liberal arts college on Long Island. I love my job. There is really no typical day at the office. I do not work the typical 9-5 desk job on a regular basis. We create programs, offer services and host diverse events for over 32,000 alumni from two campuses. I work late nights pretty often. I work weekends at least once per month. Doing so affords me the flexibility to attend functions at my daughter's Montessori school and allows me to take time off when needed for other things, like picking my daughter up at school or staying home with her when my babysitter is not available. (I do luckily have a few back-up sitters just in case!)

 Molly at Mommy's messy work desk


{HOW LIFE WORKS}
My husband leaves the house around 4:30 a.m.every day for a long commute into Manhattan via the Long Island Railroad, so it's just me and Molly in the morning. Some mornings are tough and some are really great, like today! Molly loves helping make breakfast. Pancakes are her favorite! Three days a week I drop Molly off at the babysitter one town away and then I head to work. I'm so lucky to have a short commute and a great sitter who lives local.




{STAYING CONNECTED}
Our babysitter is wonderful. She has been watching children in her home for years and truly enjoys it. I love getting text messages and photos from her during the day. Molly always has a big smile on her face. They do lots of fun activities like circle time in the morning and singing songs and walks in the afternoon. Now that it's summer they play in the sprinkler and on the slip n slide, which Molly loves!

{ME TIME}
Things I love doing when I have time to myself include: watching HGTV or reruns of Sex and the City; decorating my home and coming up with DIY projects; reading magazines like Real Simple; getting a pedicure; writing/blogging.

{IN MY BAG}
I carry a large Longchamp bag around, have for years. I love it. In it you can find tissues, wipes, hand sanitizer, three different lip glosses, white tic tacs, mail that I need to sort through, my sunglasses, and my I phone in my pink floral Vera Bradley zip pouch.

{MY FAVORITE THINGS}
Sushi for lunch; family dance parties in the kitchen; collecting shells at the beach; a fresh haircut.


 June 2014 
Moving up ceremony at school.

Monday, August 4, 2014

A New Week

Saying hello to a new week today and looking forward to enjoying lovely sunny weather here all week on Long Island. Since I only have two more weeks (cue the tears) of my summer schedule at work, I fully intend to enjoy each day.

A certain little girl has been challenging her mommy (and daddy) these days and I have been feeling really defeated, frustrated and guilty. But this week I want to put that all behind me and focus on smiling and feeling satisfied with my daily choices and embracing my role as Mommy, wife, employee, sister, daughter, friend.

We took this photo two weeks ago while on vacation at Seaside on the Jersey Shore. We had such a fun trip and great weather. Molly swam so much in the pool and loved it. We ate great seafood and fruity drinks. It was so fun!

Our little family — all smiles.




hello sandy car. We are beach goers and my car is full of sand. I love that.

hello baby powder. Do you take it to the beach with you? It miraculously takes the sand off your body!

hello iced coffee. You taste yummy on summer days with a pump of hazelnut in you!

hello calendar. We're making room for some cousin visits in and out of state this month and visits with good friends too, as well as a Birthday party and a visit to the zoo.

hello backpacks. Molly is starting preschool in a few short weeks and while in Target was drawn to the back-to-school section. I wonder what backpack she'll pick. I wasn't quite ready for that yesterday, so I plan to take her back and let her pick out a new backpack for school. Molly loves structure and is a little creature of habit. I know she is going to love her new school and be so excited to meet her new teachers and new little friends from our neighborhood. Michael and I will be attending the back to school meet and greet in a few weeks to meet her teachers and review the schedule. I'm so excited for my little girl!

hello gluten free eating. I've been pinning some recipes and food ideas on my Pinterest board.

It's a new week. What are you saying hello to?


Monday, July 7, 2014

hello {lovely summer} Monday

Although I've been less active in publishing posts on my blog the last few weeks, I have been writing here and there in draft form, keeping a gratitude journal, and thinking a lot about starting the memoir that I dream of one day publishing. 

On this lovely summer Monday I'm saying hello to some summer favorites and creating my summer fun list — a to-do list of things our family hopes to do this summer.

..............................

hello long summer days and lovely summer evenings.


We went down to Blue Point Dock after dinner and ate frozen yogurt. It was windy, but so lovely. We are so lucky to live a short walk away from this. This girl loves the beach just like her mommy!

hello easy summer outfits. I've never been a shorts a t-shirt kind of person (I'd always preferred skirts and dresses) until this year. I love how simple it is.

hello longer hair that I can pull back and pin up and off my face. It's been so, so long since I've had long hair and I'm loving how easy it is for me, especially this time of year.

hello part-time work hours. I am so thankful that I work part-time in the summer. It feels great to have three days off to enjoy a long weekend every week and come home early during the week. We will be at the beach this Friday!

hello fruit and veggies. This time of year we always have blueberries, strawberries and watermelon in the fridge. Molly loves watermelon! We planted our garden a bit later than normal, but we are seeing lots of growth and can't wait to start picking our fresh veggies and making great meals to enjoy on our back deck. Do you eat dinner outside this time of year?

hell turkey burgers and salad for dinner. I enjoy my turkey burger with avocado. My husband likes his with Frank's hot sauce. He really does put it on everything!

hello creating our summer fun list of things we want to do this summer together. What's on your list?


Be sure to check out the hello Monday series on the Lisa Leonard blog.