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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

MDW '14

We had an amazing Memorial Day weekend in the desert with Nana and Papa - it really has become one of my favorite weekends of the whole year ;-)

We hit the road nice and early on Thursday morning (the silver lining to Greyson's insistence on waking up before the sun) so we actually got to Scottsdale with enough time for a leisurely afternoon swim. Our weekend was filled with golf (for Grant), shopping (for moi), excursions to butterfly gardens, train rides and ice cream parlors and lots of relaxing pool time (we BOTH finished books, which is pretty unheard of). The huz and I were able to steal away for a date night at our fave Spotted Donkey Cantina, took the boys to dinner at the club one night and spent the last evening catching up with some extended family.

Hayes riding "Galahad" to bed at night - totally awesome.
Where one sleeps when they're 3 years old at Nana and Papa's...
Train date with my guy...
Nana getting some loving from the boys...
Brothers {and Marmaduke} playing with trains...
The Lonewaynger grilling up some Sunday afternoon BBQ...
A dip in the pool for Grey...
Chewing on a spoon as he waits for his dinner...
We were rested and relaxed when we left Scottsdale yesterday morning. Unfortunately, 9 hours later (2 of which were spent at a standstill in Palm Springs and 7 of which Greyson spent literally shrieking, sobbing and being all around miserable), most of the relaxation had subsided from our bodies but with promises to ourselves that next year we would fly, we redeemed the holiday as best we could with some homemade turkey burgers to end the weekend off right. 


Hope you all had a good one!

xo

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

My Husband, the Politician...

It's not very often your husband's name appears on a legitimate voter's ballot and I'm proud to say that Grant Cohen will keep SORO growin' by serving another 4-year term as the South Robertson (SoRo) School Representative!


When Grant turned 25, he had a quarter-mid-life crisis of sorts and decided that when he died, he wanted to have more than just his name, followed by Beloved Father, Son and Husband on his tombstone (side note, the man isn't even planning on having a tombstone since his head will be cryrogenically frozen and ashes scattered at various favorite places like Canes' tailgates, but that's a story for another time!). So he decided that for every 6 months, he was to do one thing that would, essentially make him a more interesting person and when he left this world, he would list those things on his grave.

His "bucket list" of sorts has included a variety of different skills so far. The obvious ones like 'Proud Father'; the fun ones like 'Mixologist'; the athletic achievements like 'Marathon-Runner'; and his latest few 'Councilman' and 'Environmentalist' (he's also on the SoRo Green Team).

While his endeavors sometimes take time away from the family and I like to give him a hard time about that, in reality, I think it's a really cool thing he's doing and more importantly, I think it's a great example he's setting for our boys, who'll grow up seeing that their dad has varied interests, is involved in the community and is trying to make a difference.


For as much as this whole political thing seems like a joke (and for the most part, I suppose it is), he's helping to get funding for important initiatives for our neighborhood kids (and eventually our kids if we stay here for elementary school) and learning about a world that's pretty foreign to the rest of us (so it makes fabulous dinner conversation because everyone is fascinated).

This past Sunday were the SoRo elections, so naturally, The Cohen Kibbutz portrayed a custom lawn sign loud and proud, reminding voters to "Keep SoRo Growin', Re-Elect Grant Cohen' (a slogan yours truly made up, thankyouverymuch - 10 years in advertising has taught me something!). We brought the boys to the polls and had a good laugh as we voted for the uncontested School Representative.


And we couldn't be prouder of Councilman Cohen ;-)


Monday, May 19, 2014

These guys...

People always say that the best thing about having two kiddos of the same sex is that they'll hopefully become the best of friends. And for boys, it's "play hard, fight hard". 

Even though Grey is a mere 6 months old, I can already see the bond that is forming between them. Hayes LOVES being a big brother and could not possibly give Greyson enough kisses and hugs. And Grey is so enamored with Hayes - I'll frequently find him just staring at his big brother with a look of adoration in his eyes, wanting so badly to be able to do what Hayes is doing and just utterly fascinated with this creature who isn't quite an adult like Mama and Daddy, but isn't as small as he is either.

This video captures the back and forth that went on for quite some time yesterday afternoon.
Love moments like this...


Oh and in case you're wondering, Hayes is yelling "Stay awake Grey!" b/c that's what I make him do in the car when I don't want Grey to fall asleep as I rush home from wherever we've been in order to get him in his crib for naptime. Any parent knows, even 2 minutes of carseat shut-eye can ruin what was going to be 2 hours of napping in the crib!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Isms...

This little guy turns 6 months today - the longest and shortest 6 months of my life! 


It's true what they say, your heart really does just grow to make room for all of the love you have to give the subsequent children you have after your first. Seems silly looking back on how much I worried about that when now I can't even remember - or imagine - what our lives were like before Grey man came to be.

In honor of his 6 month milestone, I thought an "...isms" post was in order. And because our other munchkin is just too fricken cute for words these days, I've posted a few for big brother as well. Enjoy!

Greyisms


...the song, "The Wheels on the Bus" instantly calms him. I sing it when I need him to be still to cut his nails. I sing it when he's overtired and freaking out as I put his sleep sack on at night. I don't know what it is about that particular song, but it's his #1 fave.
...he is a passionate eater. At first, I thought we had trouble on our hands when he just didn't seem to be into the whole solid thing, but after changing the time of day in which we feed him, we realized it was just that he wasn't hungry. Now, post-nap, he cannot.get.enough and will keep eating and eating if you'd let him. And as you can see from the video below, sometimes he can be quite vocal about the service!


...he LOVES having his tummy kissed. He laughs and laughs. I think my nose must tickle him.
...he's starting to blabber a lot more and his newest trick is doing air-raspberries with his mouth and tongue. He will communicate back and forth with you if you return the sound.
...he also isn't shy about expressing his delight via high-pitched screams. He turns lots of heads when we're out and about when he gets excited about something. Case in point, the first time he took a turn on the swing at the park last week - he literally squealed with delight...

...he's a big fan of the pool and loves to splash.
...he's very interested in Greta, which makes her less interested in Grey. She must be aware of his hair-pulling death grip, which she luckily hasn't been caught in yet (I, on the other hand, have not been so lucky).

Hayesisms


...he's always had a hard time pronouncing words that start with an 's' and are followed by a consonant, so "stinky" is "tinky" and "snap" is "nap". We're trying to correct this, so we'll say "It's sssss-nap". Well, he's taken this to mean that he has to put the "ssss" sound in front of anything he mispronounces, so for instance, when we correct his version of the word "milk" (he says "malk"), he'll say "sssss-MILK!", always at the top of his lungs.
...his rendition of the song Mama's Gonna Buy You a Mockingbird is the.best. He makes up things Mama will buy you so it goes something like this:
"Hush little baby, don't you cry,
Mama's going to buy you a quesadilla.
And if that quesadilla don't taste good,
Mama's going to buy you a kitty cat.
And if that kitty cat don't purr,
Mama's going to buy you a dog.
And if that dog don't bark..."
I tried unsuccessfully to get a video of it, but this one is still priceless... 


...every morning, his first order of business is giving Grey hugs and kisses. And if by some miracle, Grey is still sleeping and he hears him wake up, he'll excitedly ask me if he can go in and tell Grey we're coming, then hop in his crib and smother away.

...he's the most empathetic three year old I've ever met. If a character in a book is being mean to another character, he'll be on the verge of tears asking me why. It's the saddest but cutest thing ever.
...he is a graduate of the Spring session of Soccer Shots:


...the word "why" is by far the most used word in his vocabulary.
...he's obsessed with keeping his hands clean. He must wash them or Purell them 100 times a day.
...give the kids some coins and he'll entertain himself for hours. I guess it's a good thing that he washes his hands so much!
...he fell asleep like this the other day:


Thursday, May 1, 2014

Life without kids...

I came across an article online while perusing blogs during lunch today that made me so sad. The intent of the writer, a woman who had struggled with infertility for ten years, wasn't to depress her readers; it was, in fact, quite the opposite. She had been facing this battle for over a decade and had finally decided to give up, embrace the prospect of having a life without kids and move on.

But while I was happy for her decision and the closure she seemed to have achieved (I can only imagine what she's been going through), I was also so sad for what she was being forced to settle for. 

Grant and I have been blessed in that we haven't struggled from infertility per se, but I'm definitely not the kind of fertile myrtle who seems to get pregnant the instant her husband looks at her. And I'm very familiar with the obsession that overcomes you when you want to be pregnant and you aren't. It's all you can think about. Everyone you know seems to be with child. You truly think your life will be so much better if two lines show up on that stick versus one and until that happens, you won't be satisfied. So to hear that this poor woman went through trying to have a baby for 10 years, with countless invasive treatments to no avail... well, it breaks my heart. Her high school diploma analogy seems to explain it dead on (except obviously having a baby is so much more than a high school diploma). We've witnessed firsthand how much our friend dynamic has changed over the last 5 years, when friends have started to have babies and those who haven't seem to be left in the past. You become different people, with different priorities and your former friends seem to kind of fade away as you become immersed in your new community of your kid's friends' parents who default as your new friends.

So her being left behind her friends who were able to have kids was sad enough, but the real thing that killed me is knowing that she won't be able to ever experience the highs and lows of motherhood. As I was reading the article, I felt selfish for taking everything that comes with motherhood for granted. Just the other night, Grant and I were at dinner with some college friends, regaling them with horror stories about what having two kids was like, the 5:42am wake up calls, the holding a screaming infant while you wipe the poo off your toddlers bum, the not having one second of the day to do anything for yourself until they go to bed at night, and then you're too tired to do anything anyways. It's easy to identify the bad and focus on that. But in reality, I know these are probably the best years of our lives and I wish I could stop time and live it forever.

So I've made a decision to try and appreciate everything parenthood has to offer a little more. To stop thinking about what's coming next and enjoy the moment I'm in. To count my lucky stars every day because we've been given the privilege of raising these two amazing little guys. Not everybody gets that and we shouldn't take it for granted. 


I fully get why Kofoed is closing this chapter in her life - and my heart aches when I think of what her and her husband have been through. I truly hope that they are able to fill the void of not being able to have children with something else. But I also know that nothing will be able to fill that void because there is nothing like having children. Nothing comes close. And her not being able to experience that really sucks. It isn't fair. 
 
The line that resonated most with me from Kofoed's article was when she said that because her and her husband, Danny didn't have a nuclear family and hence, no lineage, that one day when they both die, they'll basically disappear. I am so thankful that we've been given the opportunity to raise our guys into the men we want them to become, who can hopefully have their own families and take a piece of us with them long after we're gone.