Friday, August 31, 2012

Beginning 3rd Grade

If you've been a long time reader or know me in person, odds are you know the past five year history of Reagan's custody schedule and our struggles in dealing with such.

Last August, we went to court to lobby for Reagan to attend school in our district which was successful and thus led to a schedule where Reag was with us during the school week and with her mom on the weekends.  While it was good for school, it was tough for us with regard to family time and of course, Reagan's participation in Brownies or extra activities.

Summer came along and the schedule changed to one full week here and one full week at her mom's. Fridays were our "exchange" days.  To be honest, at first we did not love it.  It was rough on all of us. As summer went along and we got into the swing of it, we liked it more and more. Thankfully.  It was just an adjustment from having no down time throughout the school year to all down time.

Here we are now, a brand new school year...third grade! 

George and Reagan's mom decided to make some adjustments to the school custody schedule and we're continuing with the week on/week off way of life this year.  We're thrilled because we get some weekend time wooooo hooooo! It works out so great for Reagan! Her mom gets more school involvement time which allows for Reag to be involved with Brownies as well. It's truly a win-win for all of us. It's more changes with her mom's side of the family for this year, so we're supportive of working together to make things work for Reagan.  I know!!! Can you believe I'm even saying this????  {I still have to write how our story changed...I'm working on it.}

This sweet girl has had a long time dream to have her parents be able to be in the same room together without friction.  We attended Curriculum Night at school last night where working together on her behalf has started seemlessly. It's going to be a great year!

It's worked out that no matter what custody schedule has been in place, that Reagan has been with us on the first day of school since she started.  This year was no different.

Happy 1st day of 3rd Grade!


life is good

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Steph's Snippets

I need a little brain declutter, so random it is.

~I didn't forget about Reagan's 1st day of school pictures and post. ;)  I have her all set for Friday after Curriculum Night and ending our 1st week of school...purposely. We have a whole new schedule with her this year, so I've decided to end our back to school week with her. ;)

~I have a handful of bloggers who I read {and have read} regularly for awhile. I so totally know that time is so precious to both read/comment and respond. I truly appreciate a few who consistently and thoughtfully reply either under the blog comment I have left or an email reply.  I have left many, many comments on blogs where the woman never acknowledges it.  Apparently, there is some kind of clique I am not privvy to~~especially "big bloggers."  While that in itself doesn't matter to me, if you've poured your emotions out and people respond, even a simple "thank you" goes a long way. 

~I have lived in Pittsburgh for nearly 5 years. One of the crucial missing pieces of living here has been the lack of friends. Certainly, I don't mean the quantity, but rather women whose lives are on similar paths.  Basically finding and developing a valuable friendship in a new town when you're in your 30s and most everyone has grown up with all their friends, it's difficult to find the emotional and meaningful supportive friends that I truly need in my life.  I've been fortunate enough to find a handful of them recently.  As in with any group, some people have more in common than others and closer friendships develop.  I have had some deeper conversations with a couple of these amazing women lately, as well as a lot of laughs which is important to me too. As I recently shared with my true and genuine friend, I have waited 5 years to have a friend like her.

~Junior High has kicked my son's butt by day 3. He, who has been a crack of dawn riser the majority of his life, said to me this morning, "This is early, even for me." hahaha! He asked to take a nap after school today too.

~ So I thought I had Lily's Halloween costume decided on a few weeks ago, but now I'm not so sure. Did you know that there are costumes that cost upwards of EIGHTY dollars for kids?!  Holy cow!  No, I didn't choose an $80 costume that I'm changing from, but rather I'm not sure I want her to be a character off tv yet. Plenty of time for that, I think.

~I seriously do not understand why there is a car that runs into a building or a house in Pittsburgh.

~My husband's band has an upcoming gig. Their first. I'm super excited for him! And I'm looking forward to hearing him play out. My first. I swoon like a 12 year old girl listening to him play at home.

~  Don't forget to enter my Crayola Color Wonder Summer Fun Pack giveaway! Ends tomorrow night!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Giveaway: Crayola Summer Fun Pack

I'll admit I am a school supply junkie. I lovelovelove pencils, pens, Sharpies, paper, new notebooks, crayons and markers. Seriously, I cannot wait until I see supply lists!

As a former kinder teacher, I am pretty much a crayon snob.  Only one brand will do. Same goes for markers.
I always buy extra boxes of Crayola Crayons for classrooms to donate. Heck when you can get a 24 box for 25 cents, why not! Plus have you seen the melted crayon art floating around??? You could afford to do several of those if you desired! You can find Crayola on Twitter and Facebook for more activities!

While all our older kids are heading back to school, many of us still have little ones at home. Back to school for the olders in my house also means more time in the car running between hockey, Boy Scouts, Brownies, band activities and the like.  It's crucial to keep things for Lily to do in the car and waiting at school too.

Even though my older two are back in school, Lily and I {and her friends} are still celebrating summer! In honor of the littles still summering, I'm hosting a giveaway for a Summer Fun Pack from Crayola and MyBlogSpark!  These are perfect for in the car, on the go, restaurants, waiting in the dentist office. ;) 

The best part is, they're Color Wonder! Why's that important in the life of my 2 year old who loveloveloves coloring?  Let me simply show you...
Lily was super excited to have the freedom to color anywhere!

My favorite product has to be the  Color Wonder On the Go Tiny Tube! 
It has  perforated activity pages for magical coloring fun! The tube fits in the cup holder in the car and holds the markers inside, making it a perfect on-the-go activity. It's PERFECT for the car!

The prize pack you can win includes the following:

  • Crayola Color Wonder On the Go Tiny Tubes
  • Color Wonder Coloring Pad
  • Color Wonder Barbie Mini Coloring Pad and Markers
  • Color Wonder Drawing Pad and Markers
  • Dry Erase Travel Pack
  • Dry Erase Zany Play
  • Princess and the Frog Mess Free Color Wonder Activity Sets
    This is a super easy peasy giveaway~ mandatory entries:
    1. Follow me via GFC, Networked Blogs or Subscribe via RSS and leave me a comment telling me why you want to win! {i heart humor}
    2. Tweet about this giveaway! {Include @littlepunkypie and #MyBlogSpark}

    Additional entries if you want. {leave separate comment for each}
    ~Like My Not-So-Little Guy & My Little Punky Pie on Facebook.
    ~Follow Crayola on Twitter.
    ~Tweet each day.

    Giveaway will end and the winner will be chosen via on Thursday, August 30, 2012 at 11:59p.m. Yes, this Thursday!

    Hurry hurry hurry!! 



    Disclosure:  product information, and additional gift pack have been provided courtesy of Crayola through MyBlogSpark.”

    Monday, August 27, 2012

    1st Day of Junior High

    I cannot believe that today I sent my Andrew off to junior high school!
    I can still very vividly remember my first day in 7th grade. It was quite honestly one of my worst days in school EV-ER.  I was, however, greeted at the back door when I got home from the bus stop by my mom who handed me a Sprite and I'm glad THAT is the lasting part of my 1st day of junior high memory. ♥

    Yesterday we headed out to get Andrew's know, last minute. Just like right before graduation. ;) His only requirement is "short".  Truthfully, he just likes not having to brush his hair.

    We stopped to pick up a couple last minute school supplies while we were out and the rest of the evening was filled with prepping backpacks, organizing school supplies, choosing first day of school outfits and hanging out watching Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone before showers and bed. 
    He was both nervous and excited to start 7th grade which is pretty much what I expected.
    Alarm set for 6:20am is nearly an hour earlier than last year, so he was definitely still tired this morning.  I promised him his favorite breakfast this morning ~ biscuits and gravy. That meant I was up at 6:00am and of course, was up too late last night. Of course early rising, was completely worth it when he said, "I like that we have Mom & Andrew time."
    Me too, kid.
    He ate breakfast, brushed his teeth, grabbed his backpack and out the door we went for picture taking! At this point in his life, he knows the drill and there's no getting out of it. ;) I did cried when we were heading back inside after taking pictures... I just got hit with this overwhelming surge of emotion that my first baby isn't that far from graduating high school. Fortunately, he made me laugh and my almost ugly cry turned to my favorite emotion~ laughing through tears.
      We drove down to the bus stop for today {his choice}. I think he was tired. haha!  I was glad to see a few other kids this year. I think they're all 8th graders, but glad he's not the only one.  Afew minutes later, the bus came and he was off for a new adventure! Here's hoping he has the best first day!!
    love you to the moon...

    Monday, August 20, 2012

    Playdate at the Farm

    Before I'm officially the last one to blog about our last complete summer playdate with my friends and our kids, I'd better get it in gear. ;)

    All summer we've had standing Thursday playdates that have had varying degrees of attendance depending on all of our schedules, kids and you know... life, but it's been a really enjoyable time for both the moms and the kids.

    For the last complete group, we decided to meet at a local farm before Amy headed back to the classroom and Lily's partner in crime, Victoria, wouldn't be there. The rest of our older kids go back to school next week, so we're holding on to this last week of summer!

    Lily has been getting up a little earlier lately, which has thrown her schedule off and is also cutting all four of her 2 year molars at once, so she's had some crankypants moments lately. But, despite her wearing those crankypants part of the day, we had a great time with friends! It was a week that I had all three of my kids. ♥

    Lily started her adventure out checking out the water where you look for gems in a bag of sand/dirt you can buy. She was just interested in the "wah-lee" water.  {this turned out to be foreshadowing}
    014 011
    More friends arrived soon. :)
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    024 027 007 018 044 054 040 052 035 020 021

    After all the running and playing, there was an attempt at a baby group shot.  Lily was the lone wearer of the crankypants and there was no hope of happiness even faking from her. Bahahahhahahaha!

    group groupb groupa 048


    After the meltdown, and right before we were heading out, Lily and her partner in climbing crime Victoria decided they wanted one more water playdate before their summer time was up. :)

    These two keep their mamas busy, to put it mildly.
    We stopped in at the bakery and got the kids their free cookie before heading home. Lily had a few bites before completely conking out on the way. 

    I am so happy to have met these women {and their children} via twitter and blogging and even more happy to call them my friends.

    Sunday, August 12, 2012

    Are You There?

    ~Last time I was here too long ago, I was blogging about Lily's last week of one. I have a few posts to add to that last week along with nearly every single other thing we've done this summer, but I'm starting to feel a little less in a funk and more like journaling and capturing. Thank God for my camera this summer.

    Here's what's on the horizon:

    ~I've got a few giveaways coming up!

    ~Guest Post over at one of my favorites.

    ~Life in a stepfamily and coparenting has taken a positive turn that I officially say is successful that I need to write about a new life for Reagan.

    ~Lily's 2 year birthday party!

    ~Andrew's summer adventures and all his travel.

    ~4th of July trip to Scout Camp for family day!

    ~A few tales of the outlaws.

    ~Lots of playdates!

    And just for good measure here's a cute picture:

    Thanks for bearing with me!