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October 16, 2012 / ristyka

What I do with my Free Time……

This is how I spent my morning today.  Does it get any better than this?  BEST WAY TO START THE DAY EVER.

Pre-walk pep talk!!!


A quick stop at the Snow Woods Trails!

Looking for pumpkins and ghosts!!

Planning her attack on her brother!!

The trails……

The babies:-)

Too much excitement for the littlest baby….

“Please, momma…..can we go to the “schwings?”

Never mind….I will get there myself!

The park!  


Curly slide!!!!

Should I jump?










October 6, 2012 / ristyka

Running in Place……

Well……I am no longer moving backwards!  Ha ha ……….I am now just continuing on the “treadmill” of life and keeping my head above water!  This week has been the best since I went back to work.  Finally, we are getting into a routine.  The mornings are running smoother and everyone seems to be happier; well everyone except Ally who, at the moment, only likes Dexter (don’t worry Ally, I feel that way sometimes too:-).  Updates:

Nick:  Still enjoying life as the free-spirit little guy he is.  Nothing really bothers him…..he goes with the flow (clearly didn’t get my personality).  Last night he finally fell asleep at 12:15am  (he kept walking up to Erik and saying “Hi Daddy”) and woke up with me at 6:00am to go to a 10k race at Wiard’s Cider Mill.  He was happy all day long.  I have grown to love the predictability of Nick.  95% of the time, I can tell that he will be an easy going, happy kid.  That other 5% happened during the 10k race today.  Something awful happened during the race.  Those race directors actually had the nerve to route us passed a water park (sans water) and a  playground without us stopping to go on the swings.  Jerks.  Well, Nick wasn’t having it.  He went nuts when we passed the water park because he thought we were going passed a park…..after a five minute “stop,” we finally got going again…only to pass ANOTHER park.  This time I caved and let him explore.  He played for a few minutes and was ready to move on.  It was still tons of fun and I love taking my little buddy with me:-)  The race was held at Wiard’s Orchard and with the price of the race, we also gained admission to all of the Cider Mill’s activities.  Nick was able to go in the corn maze, play at TWO playgrounds, and pick out a “Punky,”  aka Pumpkin:-)  He was also able to spend some quality time with Uncle Jeff!  This is yet another reason why I love running.  In so many ways, it brings the people I love closer together.  Can’t beat that:-)


Hanging with Uncle Jeff at the corn maze:-)

Ally:  Ally continue to provide sleep challenges for the entire household.  She also continues to be known as the “Sleep Depriver,” and the “Sleep Nazi.”  We decided to buy her a large crib hoping that she would find the new roominess to her liking and decide to sleep longer than three hours at a time.  Not so much.  We haven;t seen a turn-around yet, but we aren’t giving up.  One of these days she will get it together.  Hopefully before her 16th birthday.

NOT sleeping……

Dexter: Continues to enjoy his walks and his dinner.  Loves the weekend because we hangout and usually go to the park:-)  He is so easy to please and I love how much the kids love him.  Did I mention he is also my best friend?  Yeah, Dex pretty much makes our house home.  He is the best.

My BEST bud……

Finally, my brother and uncle scored some Tigers tickets, and I had the chance to go to the game tonight!  It was great!  I was able to spend a lot of time with my family (while Erik hung with the posse) and even watch the baseball game with very few disruptions.  It was wonderful:-)  Erik gets to go tomorrow:-)

My mom and I……love her:-)

All in all, my working world and home world are getting closer to harmony.  Cross your fingers our beautiful little bundle of joy decides to sleep very soon:-)

And…..just for a little humor……has anyone seen this guy walking wandering the streets?  HA HA

Playing the game HEADBANZ…….haha

September 30, 2012 / ristyka

Things are looking up…..

Ok……I feel like I am getting back on track.  The house is clean again, I was able to squeeze in a kick-booty workout today, and I am caught up on school work!  I realize now that I no longer have the liberty of waiting until the last minute to do things.  With the babies and Dexter (and Erik), things come up…..and then I begin to feel overwhelmed.  My new philosophy is STOP BEING A PROCRASTINATOR!!!!!  My other change is regarding my workouts.  I stress when I miss a day (because that is just who I am), so I am cutting back to 4 days a week.  If I get in extra’s, that will be great….but I am no longer going to “plan” an everyday workout.  I am going to focus on 4 quality workouts a week.

Ok, onto the “good” stuff!  Erik and I took Nick to Chicago for the day on Saturday!  My parents were nice enough to watch Ally and Dex, and we were able to focus our attention on Nick.  Since Ally has been born, we have not spent that much one-on-one time with Nick, so it was nice for him to have both of us at his beckon call.  Here are some pictures from the trip!


Just arriving and hanging out on a bench!

Checking out the river….

This is cool, dad!  Thanks for bringing me!

Behind the waterfall view!

Riding the carousel at Navy Pier!

Hanging at the beach with daddy…..

Asking mommy to flip upside down “again,” and “again,” and “again.”

Up and down the steps at the Museum of Contemporary Art…over and over and over again!

Cheesecake Factory for Dinner!

Pooped out…..

Traveling with Nick makes you appreciate the little things.  He just wants to hang out at parks, have a few donuts, and listen to Erik and I sing “Mr. Sun,” terribly off key.  We went all the way to Chicago and hung out at the swings and random escalators all day.  Nick makes me realize its not what you do that’s important…’s all about being together.  Sappy, but true.  The best gift you can give is your time.

Also, Ally is officially sitting up by herself!!  GO ALLY!!!

Growing too fast…..

Dex…..well…..he’s still trying to find a place to sleep!

Poor Dex:-(

September 26, 2012 / ristyka

I am a disaster…….

You know how there are those movies that are so bad, you just can’t look away?  That is basically my life.  Ok, that is probably really dramatic….but…..what the hell?  I feel like everything is sliding down a large mountain, and I can’t stop it.  Another analogy?  I am Pac-man and these little people I live with are the ghosts that I can NEVER catch up to.  Ok…..enough analogies.  I am struggling guys.  My light at the end of the tunnel is Thanksgiving.  I need a quicker light.  Like tomorrow.  I am behind with grading.  I am behind with my class.  I am behind with house stuff.  My workout stuff is dusty.  My pots and pans are hibernating.


This morning, Nick greeted me at 5:00am, told me he went poo-poo, then peed all over the couch.  Word of advice: don’t sit on our couch until after Friday when it is cleaned.  Ally and I spent a couple fun-filled hours last night watching infomercials.  That was awesome.  I hope to do it again….said no one……ever.  I tried to drag myself outside for a workout and within 5 minutes, Nick had tried to ride Dexter and eat all the cookies leftover from our walk last night.  WORKOUT FAIL.  Then, I tried to get ready for work.  Nick tried to go “swimming” in the toilet and proceeded to bring every blanket in the entire house onto the bathroom floor and scream at the top of his lungs until I got out of the shower.  It was also loads of fun to see that, instead of putting a dirty diaper in the diaper pail last night, I put it in Nick’s pajama drawer.  AWESOME.  That drawer was a lot of fun to open.  Three loads of laundry later, at least all of Nick’s clothes no longer smell like urine:-)  It’s the little victory’s in life that are the sweetest:-)  I actually thought about taking the day off work and just sitting in the parking lot of school and sleeping.  Honestly, it crossed my mind……

I think my mom is crazy…..

I now realize I underestimated my time commitment to work, and overestimated how well behaved my kids are.  Just kidding, sort of.  The kids aren’t bad….they are just babies and they need a lot of attention.  When they sense frustration or me trying to hurry (or any sign of weakness)…they start to rebel.  Lately, I have been doing both of those things a lot.  That has to stop.  I need to be more patient.  If I receive a B instead of an A in my class, the world will not end.  Being at work until the end of the school day means I am often there 45-55 minutes after school helping students.  My nice, easy 2 hour schedule is turning into a 4.5-5 hour commitment everyday.  This has to change.  I have to make this schedule work for two more months.  At the end of November, my schedule changes and I will be working the mornings (hopefully that will be easier???).

Still trying to find a place to sleep…..


I am trying to focus on the weather, which I love……Dexter, whom I adore and hmmmmm….can’t seem to think of anything else at this moment:-)




Please, please, please, please, please, SLEEP MORE THAN 3 hours at a time.  I will buy you a pony!!!!!

**Disclaimer…..I should add in that my procrastination problem is not helping.  I have a paper due in 1 hour and 33 minutes, and I wrote this post instead.  GET IT TOGETHER KRISTY!!!!!!

September 19, 2012 / ristyka

Still Going……..

This just seems to make everything better….



Nothing like running with the babies…..

I really should be working on my paper for class, but had to post this picture.  I look at it, and it makes me smile.  Look at Nick’s hair blowing in the wind……too darn cute.

Best view in the house…..

Forget the paper, I’m heading out for a walk……..Priorities, Priorities…………

September 15, 2012 / ristyka

Throwing it all out there…..

Ok, I am going to be brutally honest.  This has been one of the harder weeks I have endured.  Week two of “Back to School Kristy” is struggling.  Throw in Open House, a pep rally (which forced me to add 4 hours onto my incredibly long day of 3 hours), and a Nickeroni who does not want to sleep….oh…..and an Ally that doesn’t want to sleep, but that is becoming a given around here.

Please explain how she looks SO rested.  HOW?!?!

I am realizing quickly that, while I am only teaching two- 72 minute classes a day, my heart is teaching 24/7.  I can’t get some of those little rugrats out of my mind.  I can’t help it, some of them pull on my heart strings.  I simply cannot leave work-at-work.  It’s coming home with me in the form of e-mails, assignments, letters, and thoughts.  Then, there is the other side of me that feels incredibly guilt for leaving my babies…..including Erik.  Maybe a little story is appropriate here…..On Thursday I did a load of laundry (because this is what I do EVERYDAY or it gets out of control).  I folded the laundry in the living room and inadvertently left my sweatshirt folded up on the couch.  When I came home from work Friday, Nick was sniffing it and saying, “Momma.”  Sidenote: Not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing….lol…..and Erik said Ally had been laying on it all morning.  Sweet.  My kids miss me so much, they are sniffing my clothes.  Awesome.  I will be honest, I had a meltdown.  Let’s just say, not one of my proudest moments.  I was crying while jumping on the trampoline and Nick kept pointing to me and saying, “Rain.”  He thought I was raining.  Oh my gosh.  That just made it worse.

Then, there is this.

I haven’t even gotten to Dexter yet.  I walk in the door and he sits like a soldier and stares at me.  He looks like he is thinking, “How could you do this to me?”  He is absolutely sad and depressed UNTIL we take a walk.  I think he hates me.

Then, there is Erik.  Oh geez.  Where do I begin?  Honestly, it doesn’t matter what he does….it isn’t going to be right.  The culmination of all of this was a complete BREAKDOWN I had last night while he was trying to watch a movie.  I insisted he turn the movie off because it would scare me for the rest of my life if I watched it (by the way, I was working on school stuff…..I wasn’t even watching TV)  He looked at me like I was insane…..I can’t even remember what he said.  Poor guy, he was just trying to watch a movie.  I think he hates me too.

I also  had two races planned this weekend.  A 15k today and a 5k tomorrow.  Um….no way I was going to be away from these guys to do a race.  So….I decided to take Nick with me and run the 15k with the jogger.  Well, I didn’t factor in the amount of hills I would be running up, while pushing a 40 lb toddler and 20lb stroller.  I’m sore.  Really sore.  Tomorrow, I am taking both of them with me to the 5k at the zoo……if I can walk…..we shall see.

A little DQ with Uncle Jeff, post race:-)

Oh….did I mention I am also taking a very tough online class?  That’s right…..the brilliance continues.  What the hell was I thinking?  The class is demanding about 8-10 hours of my time on a weekly basis.  With Nick not going to bed until around 10:00 (at the earliest….he is REALLY having a hard time lately), and Ally being up all night partying, I don’t know how the hell I am going to keep up.  Maybe I could pay someone to do the coursework for me?  I kid, I kid.  But, seriously, if you’re interested shoot me an e-mail 🙂  Ha ha……

I realize I cannot do everything.  I am not, nor do I want to be super mom, super wife, super teacher, or super student.  I want all of the parts of my life to mesh harmoniously.  Is that too much to ask?!?!  I like routine.  I work well with a routine.  Right now, everything is everywhere.  I don’t like that.  I need to fix it.  That is my project for tomorrow.  Until then, I am going to enjoy walks with “the babes,”  dinners with Erik (no, I am not cooking them.  If I was, I wouldn’t have used the word, “enjoy.”) and time on the couch…..OUCH… legs:-)

Ally’s got the right idea…..but she needs to do this AT NIGHT!!!!

September 10, 2012 / ristyka

First Week in the Books!

Well, the last 7 days have certainly been eventful!  My first official day back to work was last Tuesday!  I can’t believe it’s already been a week!  That FLEW by!  I have to say, I am enjoying the kids again….well…..most of them:-)  I have seen a lot of familiar faces, and also it has been great to see some of the awesome staff members!  Of course, that comes with a price.  I am away from my “babes” for about 3 hours each day…..that, my friends, is taking some getting use to.  Of course I miss them like crazy, and find a way to work them into virtually every conversation.  On the other hand, being gone each day makes me CHERISH the time I do get to spend with them.  It makes me realize that being with them is a privilege, and not something I should ever take for granted.  LOVE THOSE MUNCHKINS.

My 6:00pm personal trainers….

On another note, I ran a 5k race with the double stroller this weekend!  I was very excited to shave 45 seconds off my past personal best stroller time, and get to spend time with the kiddos doing something I LOVE.  They were both so good, that we made a quick trip to Toys R Us afterwards and I let Nick pick out a toy, and I picked one out for Ally:-)  Nick chose this cool Melissa and Doug stacking toy, and Ally is now the proud owner of a crazy looking light up elephant!

I will be doing quite a lot of running the next couple of months in preparation for the Detroit Half Marathon.  I am looking forward to some fun races!  This Sunday, Nick, Ally, and I will be going to the Detroit Zoo to run a 10k!  The following weekend, Dex and I will be heading to Lawrence Tech to do a 4 mile dog jog!  Good times!


All in all, we are starting to settle into a routine.  I like that.  I run well on a routine, as does the rest of my crew.  Tomorrow is Open House at 6:00pm.  Unfortunately, that is going to throw off the routine.  6:00pm EVERY NIGHT is our walking time.  Hopefully, we can go a little earlier and no one will notice?????  WISHFUL THINKING!!!

I forgot to mention, Ally is OBSESSED with Dexter…..relentless is another word that comes to mind….he just keeps giving her kisses…