Thursday, September 29

the longest days....the shortest years

i have a friend who has a blog with that name. it's full of fun stories about her kids. it's pretty great - you should check it out.

some days, i think that saying could not be more true. especially the "longest days" part. like this morning.  the kind of morning when they cry over what to watch on tv, over half of their toys are in "time out" because they won't clean them up, there is not enough coffee, and the fighting starts at 6:45 a.m. fun times. and i figure i have two options. i can yell and scream and be annoyed with them all day. or i can block out their fighting as much as possible, love on them, and try to focus on the positive. so here's to option number 2.

hiba has said some pretty great things lately. like yesterday, we were laying on the couch together and she looked at me and said "did you know that we used to have pineapple in our house?". um, no i didn't. she went on to explain "we used to have pineapple in our house when we were babies and then we ate it and now we aren't babies anymore because pineapples are for babies". ok then.

then this morning, she dropped some of her cheerios on the floor. i asked her to pick them up, which she did without throwing a fit (!!). she was going to throw them away because "they all have germs on them", but then she told me, "did you know that the floor sometimes puts protein inside the cheerios? not in all of them, but sometimes if you spill your cheerios then the floor puts protein inside of them and then you can eat them because they have protein instead of germs. just like chicken".

matthias is pretty cute these days as well. well, when he's not screaming or whining or biting. he's started "counting" and he is so proud of himself. yesterday, i was reading him the very hungry caterpillar and he was so excited to "count" all the food. there were 12 things on each page. only he always skips 2 and 7.

i also have a lot of conversations with him that go like this:
me: (yelling to him in the next room) hey, matthias!
matthias: (yelling back) what?
me: matthias! come here.
matthias: (walking out to me and looking annoyed that i interrupted his play time) what, mom? what?

anyway, it's good to be reminded that my kids are cute and fun and they really do love me and each other. and before i know it, they'll be grown and gone.

at least that's what i'm counting on - the second half of the saying better be true. :-) 

Wednesday, September 28

it's official now

no, it's not what you might be thinking. quite the opposite in fact.

jason and i have known for a while (like since the second we found out i was pregnant with matthias) that we are quite overwhelmed happy with our two kids. our family of four feels complete.

but. i have held onto all of our baby stuff. you know, just in case. even though the possibilties of "just in case" are one in a million. (and now we all know what my blog will be about next month...let's just all knock on wood real quick).

this weekend, matthias got a "big boy bed". his crib is gone. he does not fit into his pack n play. i have not used the baby carrier since he was six months. we don't use cloth diapers anymore. and the boxes and boxes of baby clothes are all packed up. all of our baby stuff has either been donated or is for sale. we officially are done with the baby stage of our lives.

it was a little more sad that i thought it would be. mainly because i didn't think it would be sad at all. but it was bittersweet going through it all, sorting through the clothes and the baby toys and bottles that have been in our attic since we moved here. i'm still very sure that we don't want a bigger family, at least at this point in our lives. but it's still kinda sad that we're done with babies. and now that all the stuff is gone, it's for real.

two great things did come of all this sorting, though. first, matthias found about eight shirts of mine that were in a suitcase of baby clothes. for some reason, when we came back from palestine, i packed the shirts in with their clothes and then promptly put that suitcase in the attic. for two years. i knew i had lost one of the shirts, which i was super sad about because it's really cute and it was brand new, but the others i had completely forgotten about. so fun day! i was so excited when matthias pulled them out that he got super excited and started just pulling out any piece of clothing and waiting for me to praise him for it.

secondly, i re-discovered some of the great clothes we got for the kids while we were in palestine. ahh, the wonderfulness of english writing on clothes in a foreign country. for your viewing pleasure....

what is an official dog anyway?

i'm not sure if this should be for a girl or boy. or what size. or if it is long pants or not. all sorts of fun things to figure out. 

the best thing about these clothes is hiba actually wore them. 

maybe they are going for "beauty"? i'm not sure.

quite possibly the scariest dog/cat i have ever seen. definitely not an official dog. 
i don't think anyone would dispute whose pony this is....

is it just me, or does that look like drops of blood coming out of the elephant's trunk? but again, hiba really wore this. several times.

i know about "sweet 16", but i didn't know sweet 15 was a thing. on second thought, i don't think it is. 

and my favorite. hiba wore this sweatshirt all the time. and why wouldn't she? i will send it to anyone who can tell me what the pink word behind the picture is supposed to be. you know you want this....

Thursday, September 15


two years ago, i had my bags all packed, hiba was off to a friends' house, and jason and i headed off to the hospital for my last check-up. it was my due date and i was ready to meet my little boy. the doctor checked us out and said everything looked good, so i told him i wanted to check into the hospital and have them break my water to start labor. he tried to talk me out of it for that night, since it was already late afternoon, but i was not leaving without my baby. i was pretty confident it would be a quickish birth.

about 2 hours later, matthias edward pollack made his debut.

i'm so glad that God decided to give him to us. he has changed our lives for the better. he let hiba become a big sister, which has been so fun to see. he let me become a mom to a boy, which is way different than being a mom to a girl. he let jason have a son. he has brought so much love, laughter, snuggles, bumps and bruises, and adventure into our life. i can't imagine the last two years without him and i'm really excited about all the years we have ahead.

happy birthday, buddy boy!

Tuesday, September 6

new house rule

we have a new rule at our house. it's for the grown-ups. the rule is "if you go outside, for any reason - get something out of the car, check the mail, lock the shed, whatever - take your keys". you might be wondering why. well, let me tell you a little story.

once upon a time, there was a little boy named matthias. he was mischievous. and kind of clever. he loved learning new things and was always soaking up information and learning new tricks. like how to lock doors. but he didn't quite know how to unlock them. sometimes, he would unlock a door on accident and be so proud of himself. other times, he would just lock doors and be so proud of himself.

so one day, mommy was at the gym and daddy went outside to lock the shed. hiba followed him, because, well, she's nosy and follows mommy and daddy everywhere. the shed is approximately ten steps outside of our back door. maybe closer. so no big deal, right? well, this is the moment that little matthias decided to demonstrate his new-founded ability to lock doors. and of course, he decided to demonstrate his inability to unlock doors.

so daddy did what anyone would do in this situation - climb in the window. luckily, it was a beautiful day, so the window was open instead of locked. so daddy climbed in (which was made a little difficult due to our high, little windows thanks to our older house), unlocked the door, and let hiba in. and everyone lived happily ever after

Monday, September 5

back to reality

so apparently catching up on life is a lot more tiresome than i imagined. but i think, one week later, we're good. it also helps that today is labor day, so we've had an extra-long weekend to recover.

i think regular life in an of itself wouldn't have taken so long to adjust back to, but i also started a new job last week, so that may have added to the chaos. just a bit. i'm teaching at eStem, a charter school down-town, in their prime time classes. these are classes that are offered to all of the students after the regular school day. i've got first grade fine arts. fun. times.

when i say "first grader", i think of someone way older than hiba. because if they were close to hiba's age, that wold mean that i would need to be thinking about school options, realizing that she's growing up, etc. but when i say "6 year-old", i don't think of someone way older than hiba - i think of someone a little older than hiba. maybe i should have thought of this before i took this job. ha.

really, it's working out well. the hours are great, i found a babysitter who can come here, it gives me a few hours out of the house each day, it gives me more lists and plans to make (yay!), and it really is fun. of course, the first day was awful and overwhelming and terrible, but each day has gotten exponetionally better, so i'm optimistic. i'm trying to do more than just arts & crafts each day and it is amazing how much these kids want to learn. it's also amazing how much they want to talk, wrestle, pick their noses, and make fart noises with their armpits.

so that's a new development. i'm going to add in going to the gym and hopefully seeing other human beings this week, since last week was mainly survival mode. but i think it'll work. i'm a little ahead on lesson plans, i've got our schedule down, so here we go.

the weekend was a much welcomed break. we actually had no plans, which was amazing. we spent a good part of saturday and sunday working on our yard. the front actually looks good. it still needs some work, but i'm not embarrassed when i drive by. the back - well, it's got a ways to go. but we did make some improvements and it's not a complete toddler trap, so i'm not afraid to let hiba and matthias out there by themselves. now today, jason is working a short day, so we've got more time to relax and gear up for the week.

so that's what we've been up to and where we've been. i'll get back to china posts - we've got some good stories and pictures that i'm sure you're dying to hear and see. stay tuned!