The Author

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I am a high school English teacher, and mother of two charming little ones of my own. I teach in a high poverty urban charter school, while I live in a typical American suburb that has frequently been rated one of the safest cities in the country. It is a paradox I struggle with constantly, but it is my life.

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Life in My Days

Cousin best friends, round 2 (if she will stop beating him up)
They say that those with strong bonds with family members and friends live longer. I am not surprised. My family makes me feel alive.

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Marc with Ron Sr. & Ron III after dinner

My niece Isabella

This past weekend was my family's late Christmas, which we don't really do as Christmas any more, but any how... it was the time of the year when the family that I don't see for the holidays gets together.

My cousin Tracy and her family came a day early to take their daughter Hannah to Disneyland, and they brought along Vinny, since Vinny and Hannah are bestest friends. They had an amazing time.

We kept Noah while the big kids went to Disneyland. 
This year, I hosted the get-together at my house. I figured I have plenty of room, particularly with our beautiful backyard. I hadn't counted on cold weather and rain, but we made it work anyway. We turned our garage into a "backyard" of sorts. We set up the patio furniture and beach furniture and portable heaters and made it work. Marc and I made a delicious meal. I made a copy-cat recipe of the Margarita Grilled Chicken at Chilis. Yum yum yum.

We did such a good job making the garage comfy, Joby took a nap. Then he caught on fire. Literally.

It was a very amusing time this year, since there are now 5 toddlers. We all got pregnant within 6 months of each other, so they are all between 14-20 months old. My house is set up well for little ones, but it was much louder than previous gatherings have been. They are at the age of well, jealousy, which made everything amusing. If one gets juice, they all want juice. If one gets a bath, they all want a bath. At one point, there were 4 babies in my bathtub (my niece Isabella, the 5th baby, wanted in too, but my sister wouldn't let her in on the chaos).

Never a dull moment in my family. Shortly after the nap above, my cousin's husband Joby caught himself on fire. Literally. He was leaning over the stove to make coffee and his shirt caught in the burner (I was cooking rice). Only this man would catch on fire and remain completely calm. I didn't even realize he was on fire until I turned around and realized he was on the floor (dropping and rolling, apparently, which, fyi... is very effective).

That night, we found a sitter (how does one find a sitter for 5 children? You have a husband who knows people with degrees in early childhood education... and you put them all to bed before the sitter comes over so you don't lose her forever)  and a bunch of us went out for green cocktails a great St. Patrick's Day time.

It was such a wonderful time, even if it was freezing outside. Now that the family is so large, it gets so hard to find a date that works for everyone, but it is worth it.  Poor Vinny misses Hannah so much he has cried about it since before she even left yesterday (yes, he stared lamenting her departure before she even left). Seriously though, he cried the saddest tears I've ever seen for like hours yesterday.

Vinny and his bestest friend Hannah
We went to a birthday party in the afternoon, which Vinny tried to keep his chin up for, but he kept clinging to me and whispering in my ear, "I miss Hannah."  Of course, the clinging to me may have been more for warmth. It was freezing. Seriously, I am impressed with how many people were there. You know your kid is popular when 25 kids show up for a party at the park when it is in the 40s. (Okay friends outside of California, go ahead and make fun of me, but it was freaking cold).  It was a great party though, and I know Vinny was glad he went.

Today was back to the grindstone, which was hard after such a busy weekend... and with the serious lack of sleep. Tiana has been waking up in the middle of the night lately and staying awake for hours. She is making me miserable. I can only think it is teething or something, but it is wearing me down.

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