Monday, March 18, 2013

Aunt & Babysitter

Since I'm a teacher, I typically have the same holidays off as my niece (we'll call her A1) and nephew (A2). But, I teach in a different district, so our holidays don't always coincide. When I do happen to have the same days off as these guys, I usually volunteer to babysit them. One, it keeps my sister and her husband from having to take time off of work to stay home with them. Two, it saves them money by not having to take them to a daycare. And three, it gives me the chance to hang out with the kiddos and catch up on what has been going on in their lives.

So, when President's Day weekend rolled around, I told my sister not to worry about who would watch the kids. She dropped them off early Sunday afternoon. After the kids got settled down, Dan and I took them down to the playground at our apartment complex. It's nothing special, but it gets them outside and gets them active. 

A2 has been in this technology phase. If it doesn't have batteries, animations, or a screen, he's not really interested. But, we convinced him to go down to the playground and have some fun for a little while. We might have bribed him with sugar...

Our niece, the monkey.

A1 had this cute panda hat to keep her head warm in the cooler weather.

Even Uncle Danny got in on some panda action.

After the playground we headed back upstairs and relaxed. A2 played on my iPad for a little while and A1 sat on the balcony and reconnected with her favorite furry friend. Seriously, these two have an unspoken connection. The minute A1 sat down in the chair, Periwinkle climbed right up into her lap and got comfy. They must have sat together for an hour.

After dinner, A1 asked if we could go for a walk - something she and my sister do. So we put on our jackets and made one lap around the complex. We thought we'd stay out longer, but we underestimated how quickly the temperature was dropping. A1 tried to keep A2 warm on the last leg of the walk.

This is my favorite picture of the two of them. They may fight and bicker with one another on a daily basis, but deep down, they still love each other. It's a brother/sister thing.

Monday, we woke up early and met up with my friend and her son and headed out to the Webster Flea Market. I don't know what we were thinking... holiday weekend.... cold temperatures.... 2 children and a toddler... But the kids were champs. The big kids helped keep the toddler entertained. They even decided on their perfect lunch: fresh strawberries. Yep, I bought half a flat of strawberries for the kids to pig out on for lunch. I've never seen kids eat so many strawberries.

After my friend and her son left, A1 & A2 and I had some quiet time. It was more for my benefit than theirs. But I promised them that if they gave me an hour of quiet, I would take them to a new park before taking them home.

The monkey enjoyed the jungle gym, while A2 kept it simple and hung out under the pavillon.

Overall, we had a good time. I seriously love spending time with these two. Sure, they can test my nerves, but I also know that the time is going to come where they aren't going to think having a sleepover at Aunt Hannah and Uncle Danny's is cool, so I need to soak up as much time as I can with them. 

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Life Lately

Considering it has been a month since I last checked in with this blog, I figured I'd do a little bit of a catch up post with everything that has been happening lately. And what better way to do that than by going back through my Instagram feed

President's Day weekend I got to watch these two:

We stayed up late and watched movies. Playing on the complex's playground was a huge hit. We took a field trip to the Webster Flea Market. Overall, it was a fun two days. I have a few more pictures from that weekend that I'm hoping to share in a later post.

In other news, I've got a new part time job:

You're looking at the new ticket taker for my high school's softball team. Basically, I sit a table and make people pay me money to see their kids/grand kids/friends throw a ball around. It's not too bad. Sure, most nights it's been pretty cold and I've frozen my butt off. But, it's bringing in extra cash. Now if only I could stop spending that extra cash on concession stand goodies.... 

Speaking of extra cash - we've officially paid off my car! We're still waiting to have the title in hand, but we no longer have to send KIA our hard-earned money. We just sat down this weekend to hash out the budget, and it was so nice to have that extra money in the account! It was short-lived though - all that extra money got snowballed over to start paying off the Hubby's car. Fingers crossed we can get his paid off by the end of October!

The quicker we get his car paid off, the quicker we can work on having one of these:

Isn't she a cutie? And doesn't Dan look like a natural? My best friend (you might remember her as my matron of honor) had her second child on the 5th. Her first child was a boy, and this time around she and her husband were blessed with a little girl.

Now, I've never really had "baby fever" like some of my friends have had. Maybe it's because I've been surrounded by babies and children since high school. But I'll tell you what - spending time with this little cutie makes me more and more excited about the thought of starting our own family.

But honestly, Dan and I are still enjoying just being the two of us. We've been married nearly a year and half now, so we're not in a rush to end this "newlywed" phase. Although we're trying not to spend a whole lot of money on unnecessary things so we can pay things off quicker, we still try to set aside some money to enjoy a date night every now and then.

Every time we go grocery shopping I see this little frozen yogurt shop in the shopping plaza in front of Wal-Mart. My students have told me about it and how much they love it. I've been trying to talk Dan into going for months now. He said he couldn't imagine liking frozen yogurt if he didn't like regular yogurt. But, after plenty of begging, he agreed to go out for dessert one night. And guess what? He loved it! This is one of those times I like to say "I told you so!"

For the most part though, we've been spending most of our time lounging around the house...

I've had some health issues lately, so I haven't been in much of a mood to get out of the apartment and do anything. Heck, if you saw the state of our apartment right now, you'd think we were the biggest slobs. I'm sure our poor roommate is growing frustrated by our lack of cleaning lately. Oh well. Can't win them all, can you?

So that's the gist of what's been happening in our lives lately. A lot of relaxing with some moments of excitement scattered throughout. Health issues aside, I can't complain. I'm counting down the days until Spring Break. What have you been up to lately?


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