Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Catching up

Thought I would provide a little update on life lately (besides Riley's birthday and my trip, of course)...

Movie Night

A few months ago we started a movie night on Friday nights with Riley. The first night was sort of a last minute "hey, we should start a movie night" so we pulled a movie from our shelves that Riley hadn't really seen before: Up, and had dinner on the floor in front of the TV.  I thought she would really enjoy this, but Jesse was worried about the sad content when it came to the husband and wife in the movie. That went right over my then 3 year old's head, and she seemed to enjoy the movie... that is until we were near the end of the movie and there were dogs barking and balloons popping and it was all too much. Riley totally broke down and that was the end of movie night that night.

We weren't ready to give up on movie night altogether since we know Riley's watched lots of movies and some I would say were scarier than Up, such as Lion King, and Brave.  Luckily, that next movie night and every one since has been a success. Movies that I thought would freak her out didn't (Disney, your G movies are not G in my opinion).

We usually have pizza and veggies (Riley) or salad (Jesse and I) and wear our pajamas. We all look forward to it each week even if some movies are harder for the adults in this house to have much excitement for. It's a great way for our family to be in the same room for an hour or two without giving in to any other distractions. I'm a little worried that we are going to run out of movies to watch, but so far we've done ok.

PS. Despicable Me franchise? Please make more movies. Thank you.

New Mattress

As noted in my day in the life post we recently went shopping for a new mattress. I was hesitant to get one as I wasn't sure we needed one, but we did. I will own up to that. I went in wanting a firm, but not too firm bed, while Jesse wanted a very firm bed. We both also thought we didn't want a pillow top because our spare bedroom mattress has a pillow top, except it doesn't. How did I think it did all these years? Turns out it's just a cheap mattress with little support. Anyhoo, Jesse and I tested out a lot of mattresses and luckily ended up on the same page: somewhere between firm and soft and with a very supportive spring system. Oh, and we totally got a pillow top. Go figure. I'm loving our new bed even though that meant needing to get new sheets because the mattress is almost as thick as two of our old mattresses. Ok, maybe not, but it's big.

My Birthday

I usually devote an entire post to this, but I have to admit I was feeling slightly sour about this birthday. Oh, don't get me wrong, overall it was a nice day, but my hubby struggles with birthdays or any celebration... and not just mine. More on that in a moment - let me talk about the fun stuff we did first. The day started out with a visit to the gym. Riley kept asking to go someplace else after which is sort of weird since she never does that. She finally came up with that we needed cupcakes for my birthday. Smart kid. I was going to mention that I wanted to have a good piece of chocolate cake at some point that day so I was all on board with Riley's suggestion. We picked up the treats and made plans to eat them at my in laws later since Riley was spending the night there.

Around 3 we left for my in law's house. It was getting pretty cold and very windy. Very windy. At one point we had to stop in the middle of the road because we couldn't see anything except white snow blowing in front of us.

We arrived safely at my in laws and ate our treats which I didn't really care for. Boo. We got these from a high end grocery store, but one of my favorite pieces of cake I've eaten in the past has come from a normal run of the mill grocery store (Rainbow). Must remember this next year.

Jesse and I then headed over to Mill Valley Kitchen. It's rather close to our house, but I'd never been there. This seemed like just the occasion to try something new. I liked the feel of the place: bright, yet cozy, and a nice open kitchen. Jesse had the kale salad with seared tuna and I had the sea bass that came with a mushroom quinoa and cucumber salad and we shared some veggies. Oh, and we each had a glass of wine. And I can't forget the water. Seriously, this was some pretty awesome water. I don't think I've ever commented on how good the water is at a restaurant - we even had to ask the waitress about it. Apparently, it's ionized. I'd come back for the water alone. They have a different lunch menu that has some good looking sandwiches on there so I am looking forward to checking this place out again.

After dinner we watched Man of Steel. Meh. Just... too much stuff happening.

And then? It was time for bed. I still hadn't received a gift or card from Jesse (or Riley) yet, but he's been known to wait allllll day only for me to find my gift in my pillow case so maybe it was still coming. But then he went up to bed to read and I followed and nothing.

I love this guy and he really is a great guy, but fails when it comes to birthday stuff. The night ended in a lot of sorry's from him and some tears from me. Yuck, you guys. I have a friend who goes all out and plans secret getaways for her husband, but he just gives her a simple gift on her special day. My friend has said that she knows that her husband will never go all out and she's ok with that. I'm not looking for Jesse to go all out, but trying to decide if I just accept that he sucks when it comes to birthdays (and mother's day, ahem) or how I deal with this. It's not the first time we've had to have this talk and it's not just me that he misses the ball on. He said he had plans to have Riley make a card, but ran out of time. Sigh.

It's a couple weeks later and still no card or anything so I am assuming I won't receive anything. He had mentioned months ago about getting me a new camera and that was the plan - we even picked out the model I wanted - but then I told him to hold off on that because of the cost. I didn't think he would take that as code to not get me anything at all. And to be clear, it's not that I need anything big. I would have loved to have something meaningful that didn't cost a thing.

Ok, enough ranting about that. I don't want to throw my husband under the bus, but if you have any suggestions as how to rectify this (again, I'm not the only one who doesn't always get gifts. See also: his mothers, his nephews...) I would love to hear your suggestions.

Edit: I should add that for Valentine's Day Jesse did plan ahead and gave me flowers and chocolate.


I know I just did a couple of posts on her since it was her birthday, but I realized that since then we've been to the doctor and received her weight and height stats. It's funny how less important these seem now than when she was younger, but I'd like to capture them here. Turns out she's still skinny and tall:

34 lbs - 42%
3'5" - 77%

Also, it was interesting to have the sight and hearing tests introduced this time. The sight tests had different shapes of different sizes to identify except that some of the shapes weren't really shapes that even I would identify. For example, one looked like a heart with a bite taken out of it. Riley struggled to know what this was and called it a star until the nurse mentioned to us what some of the kids called it (she thought it was a strange shape as well). But I suppose, in some way, it's a test to see what kid's do call it. She did ok with the sight test and they seemed fine with they way she answered, but I thought she did better with one eye over the other, but maybe that's normal for kid's her age.

The hearing test was a bit of a struggle for her as well. She did fine hearing, but had some stage fright at raising her hand when she heard a noise. We kept having to stop and explain the directions to her. Finally, the nurse asked her if she knew about how many beeps she heard. She definitively said "six". We did another round and again she noted how many beeps she heard. This is soooooo Riley and something we joke about all the time (and are amazed at as well). In fact, it wouldn't surprise me if a year from now we asked her how many beeps she heard and she would be spot on (but not remember something I just told her to do).

So yeah, that's about it. It's still cold. I'm still yearning for spring. Oh, and I finally plan to post about working from home. I was waiting for some news in regards to it and finally have it. Look for that post next. I swear.


  1. I was quite pleasantly surprised by Mill Valley Kitchen after getting a $50 gift card there for Xmas from my parents. We randomly were there during a happy hour and it turned out to be quite a deal. The GF options are nice.

    As for b-days and holidays that are lackluster...I have the same problem. My MIL fairly trained her kids to never giver her gifts and that has carried over to me. When A & I first got together I thought it was kind of awful that he didn't get her anything for holidays and I insisted we get her things, but over the years she has trained me out of that too - she is EXTREMELY frugal and pretty much views everything as useless/frivolous when you give it as a gift (and is clearly not happy to receive it) so... Blah. Not so fun. I do a family calendar for her once a year and that's about it these days. I should maybe switch to sending hallmark cards and signing our name as those seem to be a high priority for her? Probably best just to reciprocate what she does.

    Anyway, I have just had a lot of not really fun conversations with A over the years about how birthdays are a big thing for me and it's not about spending money, it's about celebrating with little things. It's better now, although still hit or miss. But he'll get me little things that I don't usually have - like diet mt dew or an US weekly or something and leave them for me in the morning. For xmas this year I did pre-send an Amazon wish list a few weeks before to make it as easy as possible...but then of course I got the email notification of what I was getting!

    So no real answers for you, but I do understand somewhat!

    1. Lol... that you get an email about your gifts. Oh, and I do have items on the Amazon wish list the account we share), but I've never said "here's a list to pick from". And honestly, I didn't think I had to say "since we are putting a hold on the camera please make sure to get me something else". Guess I should, but it feels like it takes whole point of giving a gift out of it. I think we need to have a conversation along the lines of "what will help you to remember to give a gift?"

      And it is nice to know I am not alone... although it's also a bummer to hear others going through this too.


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