Friday, September 30, 2011

Bamboo Again?

Come On..Christian got Bamboo this week ..Really!

If you don't understand that statement, read my last blog and you well clearly understand. What are the chances of it? Don't get me wrong, I like Bamboo. He is growing on me. I think it is a fabulous idea but those first few hours are Torture..the fighting...

Here's the deal with how it works with Bamboo the baby stuffed panda. 1 child gets Bamboo on Thursday. You take him on adventures over the weekend, journal about them and return him on Tuesday. Then Thursday a new kid gets him. So, as I am running to pick up the boys (late as always) the teacher greets me with the biggest smile and just says, "Oh Jody, Christian got Bamboo.. I am so sorry"....KNOWING THE FIGHTING I HAD LAST WEEK. I literally got one day without Bamboo. Come on really, this has to be a joke.

She said they were sitting in the circle and getting ready to pick a name out of the bag. She said Christian verbalized out loud, "I know I will get him, I know I will get Bamboo, I miss Bamboo, I know I will get him" with the biggest smile. And he did. Ms. Lora (his teacher) laughed and congratulated Christian on his positive thinking. Congratulated me on teaching my children to be so positive ( hummm.. that is my goal, not sure how I am doing it because I verbalize everything, including my complaining...hence my blogging). I had a quick flashback on the car ride home from last week when Nicolas got Bamboo. The fighting.

But then I looked at Christian who was BEAMING with that charming smile and I was so happy for him. Then I looked at Nicolas who had the most evil, grumpy face I have seen on that kid and thought "Oh no, here we go". Especially, when he didn't want to say goodbye to his friends and very snotty said good bye to the teacher. Nicolas is my super lover boy so I knew it was going to be a tortuous car ride (see not so positive right)? So what did I do to try to make the situation better..what any mom would do: Bribe them with going out for Pizza! When that failed I knew we were in trouble. Nicolas had a tantrum about Bamboo at nap time for 50 minutes. I am talking the KING of all meltdowns. The type where you lay on the floor praying to god to please make it stop. The kind you beg God if he makes it stop you will do this, you will do that, you will be a better parent...yadda yadda yadda.

Now keep in mind, I also have to plan adventures, take photos, get them developed and of course scrapbook it all again. That damn scrapbook.

Bamboo will not be seeing much adventure this weekend because the boys went to get their flu shots found out Nicolas has the beginning of Croup. I knew he was cranky yesterday I should of realized that it couldn't have been just from our good friend Bamboo. I didn't even think a kid could get croup at their age. Both boys are a little cranky today and just want to chill since they have fevers. So, I am thinking this is how the photos will go this weekend:

1.) Bamboo with the boys fighting.
2.) Bamboo at the doctors.
3.) Bamboo watching T.V.
4.) Bamboo taking medicine.
4.) Bamboo sleeping a lot.
5.) Bamboo being thrown in the washer.

I am sure the next mom will love that one! Well, at least I got a few good pictures of Christian and Bamboo yesterday!! Gotta love Bamboo!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011



Hooray..Nicolas was chosen this past week at school to take home "Bamboo", the class mascot panda, home for 5 days. Nicolas had to bring Bamboo on all the adventures for the weekend and journal about it in "Bamboo's" book. Then the journal entries are read to the class. Now..this is a BIG thing to get Bamboo but I was not expecting it this week! My first thought: "Shit I am away all weekend on a girls trip to Houston". My second thought.."Shit the fighting over Bamboo between the boys". The teacher said Nicolas jumped up so excited and then Christian jumped up with a twinkle in his eye as he ran immediately to teacher and said "Nicolas has to share him right? Nicolas has to share right"? She explained 1 child gets Bamboo each weekend, for special one-on-one with Bamboo and this is Nicolas's weekend. Another example of a "Singleton" activity in a "Twin World"!

Oh lord! The whole way home I heard fighting non-stop about Bamboo and that Nicolas had to share. Those first 5 hours were TERRIBLE. Plus, when I looked at Bamboo's journal, it was a professional scrapbook with 3-4 tier framed photos from the previous creative moms. I called my sister and said " Well, we got Bamboo and guess what, we are going to have 2 photo's this weekend : 1.) Nicolas and Christian fighting over Bamboo and 2.) A photo of Bamboo on the refrigerator for the weekend (to stop the fighting). Plus, I intend to lower the standards on this scrapbook journal for all future BUSY moms. Yeah right, after a weekend away from the boys, I was driven into madness to create the best damn Bamboo pages ever!

The first day with Bamboo was rough, in fact I had a nickname for Bamboo - "BASTARD BAMBOO". Within that first hour at home, Bamboo almost lost an arm and leg when Christian took it and flung him across the room, poor Bamboo hitting the wall. But after explaining for 5 hours that this was Nicolas's special time with Bamboo and that Christian would get a turn the novelty wore off. It turned out to be a cool experience other than it took me 3 hours to do the damn scrapbook (which I secretly enjoyed), I am extremely creative so I needed this to SHINE! I laugh now at the vision of Ken coming upstairs, seeing me in a flurry of cutting, taping, gluing was piled up ALL OVER my desk! Now remember, you have to get the photos developed the last day so all the pages get created in the journal on the last day. At 10 o'clock pm, I called it quits. I actually told one of the mom's from the boys class today " Hey..if Jack gets pick can you lower the barr down so when Christian gets pick I don't have to go all fancy again"! But of course I will, it is my son and he only deserves the best as well! The director of their school commented to me it looked awesome when I picked up the kids (probably because I added a educational twist to most of the photos and she probably thought..."Poor Jody, she has to do this twice"). LOL! All-in-all this is a wonderful activity for the kids and it created cherished memories for Nicolas and Bamboo! Here are a few of Bamboo's great adventure at the "House of Hughes"!

First Day Home, Bamboo getting snuggled

Nicolas calling Daddy to tell him HE got Bamboo and Christian will not stop taking him.

Bamboo upstairs for a nap with Nicolas (how many germs do you think are on Bamboo)?

Had to feed hungry Bamboo- hey bears get hungry too!

Showing Bamboo the neighborhood (that is Bamboo's little bag)Bamboo on a Trolley RideBamboo at the aquarium where the most famous dolphin "Winter" is..I can say that because the story of Winter has been on the Today Show and news with the new movie about him.It wouldn't be complete without Bamboo seeing some sort of machinery!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"The Twins"

Each day when the boys get home from school, their bags are filled with cute little goodies. It is usually filled with their art work, what they are working on this week, notes from the school but today I had the sweetest surprise that brought a tear to my eye because it was especially for my boys. I knew that no other child received this special piece of paper. It was a poem, just for them. I had a tear in my eye because at that very moment, I truly knew their teachers "Got It". They get how much I want each of my children to grow and have their own identity, not just be "The Twins". I read it to the boys and told them it was from Ms. Lora and Ms. Cassidady and Christian smiled and said.."Mommy is that a prayer". Made it that much sweeter. This is what it read (I am not sure if she made it up or it is a actual poem):

but I am "me"
and he is "he"
that's two!
Each one, though like the other, still unique.
Build in that snse of self.
Be sure our roots are separate.
If we're too much entangled we cannot go our different ways.
Relate to each of us as though we were the only one,
without comparison......
without expectations.
Each of us a whole, not just a half.
We will feel free, and to enjoy the specialness of being twins.

Could they be any different?

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Sigh...I haven't had the ability to write on this because every time I do, I get so choked up. Ken's cousin, Paul Hughes, was lost during 911, he was on the 97th floor of Tower 1 World Trade Center. Every year it is so heartbreaking to see him and his family grieve. I am just now watching the video today of the interview that was done with his Paul's wife and daughter because I couldn't do it last week (Link Below).

It was weird last week on the anniversary because Ken was just about to call his dad to see how he was doing and Ken happened to turn on CNN. There in the middle of our T.V. was a photo of his cousin with the words "Missing" written under his photo. Out of all the people lost, there he was on our T.V. It was from when the families posted photo's of their loved ones that were missing days following the attack. It just broke my heart to see that and to know Ken saw it. To know what his family went through, to know my boys will never get to meet their cousin.

I didn't get a chance to know Paul because he lived in Conn but to know Paul's mother and the rest of Ken's family, I only wish I could of known him. I feel love for him because his family keeps his memories alive and helps me to feel like I know him. Sigh. That day, 10 years ago was like that whole day was in slow motion, minute by minute, our families calling each other to see who made it, who wasn't heard from. Both our families are from N.Y. and we both have friends who worked and live in the city. My uncle was working in the Pentagon the day of the attack and it was horrible just waiting. Thankfully he was fine. One of Ken's best friends had to walk that long walk across the bridge the day of the attack that is always aired on T.V. He worked very close to the buildings and the photo's he sent us when he went back to work will forever be engraved in my mind.

We were in Boston that day and we had just gotten back 2 days before the attack from Vegas. I actually sat next to a woman on the plane on our way to Vegas that would of been on the plane that hit the tower if she hadn't been called home early because her kids were sick. She was mad at her husband because he called her to come home because he couldn't take care of all the kids sick. We had talked about my anxiety of flying and she was just so sweet. I can remember the day of the attack I got a 1 sentence email from her and it read, "Jody-did you make it home from Vegas, I was supposed to be on that plane that flew into the towers". I just started crying, thanking God her husband called her home. Every single time I hear a low plane since we live near Sarasota airport, I can't help but think of 911 because of that video with the noise of the low plane hitting the tower. I hate it. When they grounded the planes that day, Ken and I stood outside and it was the scariest sound of silence at our house because we lived pretty close to Boston airport and we always heard planes overhead. To hear the silence....and to just be waiting to hear the news of Paul, my uncle and our friends is something you never forget.

Below is the link of the interview that was done this year with Donna, who is Ken's cousin. If you know our family, you will see how much he looks like Ken's Dad. To everyone out there who has lost someone from 911, I wish you all the peace God has to offer you. To Ken's family, I love you so much. The part of the clip about his cousin's and interview with Donna is about 5 minutes into this link.

Friday, September 16, 2011


One of the best things of having two children is hearing their laughter! I caught on camera Christian having a great laugh from a tickle attack from Dad. What a wonderful break from the meltdowns. This age is awesome but absolutely insane with the fighting that comes from having 2 kids of the same age. D.R.A.I.N.I.N.G! I read something this week that really helped me put things into perspective...."If it is not going to matter in a year, then why get mad at it". So when they unroll the toilet paper, get into the clean laundry basket, decide on playing hide and seek when I am already 10 minutes late going somewhere, I try to think of that! It helps but I think about that saying ALL DAY!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Missoni for Target

Wow! Okay, I love Target and now I love it even more. If you haven't heard yet, yesterday Target introduced the designer name brand "Missoni" and from what I heard it INSANE!! It shut down their website and created a Black Friday ordeal. My cousin in Chicago said it was crazy and people were running everywhere in the store and within 30 minutes the items were cleared out. She went to the home goods and by the time she went to the clothes section everything was gone!! I am not one who needs high end name designer brand items, especially having two little munchkins. However, I must admit I used to love designer clothing when I was younger working fulltime..but now I proudly buy Target brand, hell I buy any brand if it is affordable and looks good. The boys and I are headed over there this A.M to look at Halloween stuff but I am secretly excited to see what this Target has or if it replaced any of the items on the shelf. This brand is typically so expensive, high end and most importantly great quality - we are talking normally their dresses start at about $1400.00! Wow, I can see why it was so INSANE! I am not going to buy anything today since we do not need anything but it is so cool that Target now has this brand at a very low price!! Yipee!! I know some friends that got some awesome deals and ventured out into the madness! Hoping today will not be insane because I promised the boys we could go look at all the spooky Halloween items. Target is just a fab place and now even more FAB!!!

Sunday, September 4, 2011


I love the post my wife writes, but since this relates to a sporting event, I volunteered (wanted) to write about the boys first trip to a professional baseball game. Ken..A.K.A..Dad

We decided to take them to the Tampa Bay Rays baseball game now that they are old enough to actually enjoy the game and hopefully be able to sit through most of it. Well, before we left for the game I mentioned in the passing to the boys that "Maybe the player will hit a ball into our section and they could get a ball"! Which lead them to say"we can catch it daddy"!! That led to an explanation that I would catch and block it because it is a really hard ball, not like the toy ones at home. This titled me as the "Ball Blocker" (not appreciative of the title) and Mommy the "Picture Taker" because she already forewarned all of us that she was going to be the Papa Razzi with pictures!

Off we go with our gloves to the big game. Well, as soon as we sat down, we were bombarded with "when are the players gonna bring us a ball...why aren't they sharing the baseballs with us"? Wow, I didn't realize that they were gonna really expect to take an actual ball home from the players! Uh Oh Dad..I better figure out how to solve this one and I did.. make up a story! I told them that the players would mail the balls to everyone after the game and they would mail it to my work this week. Problem solved easily enough with a trip to Walmart.

Feeling guilty, I decided to haul the boys (one at a time) along with 15-20 screaming 10 year old boys to the bottom of the row which is right above the dugout at the end of the inning. This is when players will toss the ball that was just used after the last out. Mind you..I am 6'2" and with a 3 year old in my arms, we stand about 7'. Also, keep in mind this event of running to the bottom of the row has to be timed perfectly because they won't let you do it until right when the last out is called. So here I am, a 7' adult running down the steps pushing aside as many 10 year olds from my path as possible.. I WILL get in the front.

Christian goes first and we make it to the front! Yes, mission accomplished! We watch intently as the pitcher is walking back to the dugout and he looks directly at us and almost smiles at how cute Christian is...standing on top of the dugout, wearing his neon yellow/green glove. Pitcher has the ball in his hand and continues right into the dugout!! WTF!! How could he just pass up throwing a ball to my son! Then I realized, that the last out was made by a strike out and it is bad karma for the pitcher to give up that ball. Come on, really! They are not making playoffs this year, do we really still have to worry about traditions at this point.

Next is Nicolas's turn. After a failed attempt because as we were waiting for the inning to end, I mistakely asked him if he had to go potty, as usual it draws a "yes" response. Well, inning ended as we were in the bathroom and little Nicolas saying "Hurry up, I need to hurry we are going to miss it". Crap (not literally) we did miss it. Next inning, we pushed our way through the little 10 year olds who were trying to get a chance to take my sons ball. We made it to the front of the pack as the inning ened on a throw to 2nd base. Sean Rodriquez is their 2nd baseman who, as he walked back to the dugout with the ball, looked at Nicolas and tossed the ball directly to us! I grabbled it before it hit him in the face and before those damn 10 year olds could get their hands in there! WE DID IT!!! Nicolas couldn't have had a bigger smile on his face and as we turned around, the sections actually cheered for him that he got the ball! Next thought " Oh shit, how am I going to get one for Christian....he is going to be so disappointed"! Luckily, it was the middle of the 7th inning and out came the Ray Cheerleaders on top of the dug out throwing softballs to the crowd. Christian loves baseball, but even at 3 years old he may love pretty girls slightly more ( I think he gets it from his Grandpa). As I am holding him, one of the dancers kind of nods to me that she is going to throw us a ball. Sure enough she tosses it halfway up the section directly to me and Christians dream has now come true! A baseball from the "Dancing Girls" is something I don't think he will ever forget!

What an awesome trip! We had hotdogs and the boys literally inhaled a bag of cotton candy, which helped keep them up late and they sang " Take Me Out To The Ball Game" all the way home. Thank you Sean Rodriquez and the "Dancing Girl" for making this an unforgettable night at the baseball park. We can't wait to do it again!