Friday, September 4, 2015

TENNIS SUMMER SCRIMMAGES.

The weather couldn't have been more perfect last week. We had nothing but sunshine with zero percent humidity which made it perfect for us to sit comfortably without sweating profusely to watch Lexie play tennis. 

Last week she had two scrimmages and played exceptionally well. Jon was lucky enough to have had two days off to watch her play. It is always so nice for him to get days off during the week so he can sit with us and watch her play. It's so hard nowadays for parents to sit in on their kids games especially when they work during the day, but as luck would have it his days off fell on the same day as her scrimmages! Lucky duck! We all cheered her on as she was playing doubles. Noah and Chelsea sat on the bench like two little adults cheering her on as well. At times they would fight over the balls that were being thrown over the fence, but luckily there were enough balls for the both of them to keep, and then return after the game was over. It's so nice to see them interested in watching their older sister play. Gives me a lot of hope that they will both stick to playing tennis while their young. 
I love this time of year where we can sit in and go to Lexie's games. She has the heart and has a strong love for the game just as her sister did. I still remember the first time Sierra took her on the court to practice, and am so grateful she has developed a love for the game. She is passionate and worked hard practicing all summer so she can make the team which she did. I'm so proud of her, and hope that she'll have an amazing season, and continue to learn from her coaches all about the game and to win. 
Now how about that US Open? Any one been watching the games? That Federer is awesome, and we are still determined to go to Arthur Ashe stadium to attend a game, but for now I will settle watching my daughter play! 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL TWENTY FIFTEEN.

Can I just tell you what an emotional mess I was the other day. I mean I really thought I had it together with this "letting my kids go" "i'm okay with them growing up" stuff. I mean I've had four kids right? I've been around the block three times, and I have sent three girls to preschool including daycare and even half day kindergarten in the past so why Noah? Why was I such a nervous wreck with this one when he got on the bus, and why did I cry so many tears? Lexie's response, "because he's your only boy mom, he's the baby." And you know what...she was right on point! 

I still can't fathom being alone during the day, and I know that may sound wimpy and that's probably a weakness for me when it comes to my children, but I absolutely love my kids. I am not one of those mothers who just wish my kids away, and say stuff like, "I cannot wait for them to get out of the house." If anything I want them to live with me for always. I personally wouldn't mind if they were all living with me, because that's how much I love them. I could never grow weary of their presence or attitude. That's part of my motherhood, and I am just so grateful for that feeling because I could tell that my mother had similar feelings once it was our turn to leave the nest. In spite of all the downs I had with my mother when I was young I could tell that she didn't want us to leave her as we got older. I know this because she would always cry when we would leave the house after visiting her. She would even get a little upset when we moved out of the house at such a young age, but for me I am going to try hard to not do that with my kids. I found that it was a little hard to let go of Sierra when she left for Utah, but it's all good now, and I'm happy that she's enjoying life out west. 

I know eventually it'll get easier as the years go by. I know this! I know that all kids grow up, and that life moves on. I know that with time, things will get easier. One thing for sure is that I'm so, so glad that Lexie is here with me all week so that I can adjust to Noah being gone. I firmly believe there's a reason why Noah and Chelsea started school a week earlier than Lexie this year. The good man upstairs knew that I was going to need some solace from someone once Noah left for school, and that someone was my 15 year old daughter. An old soul she is. 

One thing for sure is that I didn't think I was going to cry at the drop of a hat once the bus took off! One thing that put me at ease when those doors opened was that I knew the bus driver. He goes to my church, but that still didn't make things any better. When I saw Noah's little hand pressing up against the window as the bus drove off I lost it! I cried so much to the point where I was inhaling, and hiccuping. I honestly don't know what I would've done had I not had somebody by my side at that given moment. I'm sure I probably would've stood there for a good five minutes then slowly walking home and sitting on the couch moping, and crying for at least an hour. Luckily I'm built to resolving my own issues, and handling hard things without bombarding someone with my sadness. I know this because I've had good cries like that before, and living for 43 years in this life believe me...I've had many issues! 

It was one of those moments where all you need is a good cry so you put in one of those sappy movies like "The Fault of Our Stars" to clear the sadness. I'm also lucky to have this little blog in the corner of the net to write my heart out about the things that I find hard in this life, and faith in my heart knowing that in the end everything will be okay. 

One thing that did help me besides having Lexie by my side that day was hearing words from a random neighbor whom I've seen driving up and down our street before, but have never really talked to him. 

As the bus was driving off he was in the car waiting to cross, and he stopped to say something to me. He looked like someone's sweet grandpa, and his words sure brought me a lot of support. He said to me, "was that your baby getting on that bus?" I said, "yes, it was." He said, "I can tell by the look on your face that he's your baby." Just know that he'll be fine, and that he'll have a good year." I said thank you, and he drove away. After hearing his words of comfort I knew that Noah was going to be ok, and then my tears subsided.

Those three hours of school went by pretty quick probably because Lexie was with me. We walked to the bus stop and waited for the bus to arrive. As the bus drove closer to the curb I was standing at I was relieved to see them  through the window sitting together. Apparently they are "bus buddies" and I am very happy that they both get to sit with one another after school until the buses come. Noah looked a little tired when he got off the bus. I snap chatted this whole experience, and if it's still on there you have about 24 hours to view it at r_jorgensen before it gets completely deleted. 

PM kindergarten is something that I'm going to have to get used to because like I said, I have never experienced having a kid attending PMK so this is going to be very interesting.  I know eventually I'll get used to it , and slowly build a creative routine for our morning on what to do before he leaves for school, but for now I'll learn as I go, and do.

This morning was kind of a long one. After having cold cereal for breakfast we painted for a bit, and even though Lexie told me to eliminate technology all together I caved in, and had him watch pbs kids because, peg + cat is his favorite. He played with his legos for a bit afterwards, and then we took him to the park. It has been hot and muggy for the past few days, and because I didn't want to wear him out before school we only endured about 25 minutes of mugginess. We also decided to add a bit of tennis before school if he's up to it. 

I've decided that we're just going to lay it cool in the house until cooler temperatures arrive. Then we can do all the fun stuff like riding on the bike trail, but for any of you moms who have a five year old attending half day PMK, and have any tips on what you do with your child please share!
I have a very strong feeling that this year will fly just as the rest of them have, but I'm not counting the days. I just want to focus on the positivity in hopes that our kids have a fun, and educational school year that way future school years for Noah will become easier and easier....especially for me! 

Let's just hope I don't turn out like Jane Fonda in Monster-in-Law when his time comes to get married! Yikes! 

Monday, August 31, 2015

POLAROIDS THEN & NOW.

I will always remember the day my mom had her hand glued to her polaroid camera. It seemed like she always enjoyed taking pictures, and when she did it made her super happy. I miss those days, and sometimes I feel as if she didn't take enough, but the time spent with her without the camera were awesome too! Still...there's something about taking pictures that relieves all kinds of stress. At least it does for me. That's probably why I take so many, and looking back at these photos I remember seeing it in my mother.

She was always excited for the first day of school to start (second polaroid.) I vividly remember the new dresses she bought us, and how she kept telling us to stand still, fold our arms, and smile pretty. I also remember the first time when we got our first bike (third polaroid.) Technically it was for my sister, but after a while was passed on down to me. My mom knew how much I liked her bike so she obviously took a polaroid of me with it. 

Christmases were very rare in our home, and I honestly only remember two, but I will always remember the one when she took a polaroid of us with the little christmas tree standing on a tv tray (fourth polaroid.) She really made that Christmas special, and I will always treasure that moment. I now know why she would always take pictures of us, because I have been doing the same thing with my children for years now!

Times have changed since polaroid cameras, and even though I feel as if iPhones have really raised the bar with all the technology the've put into it with different apps and filters to make your pictures look nicer, there's nothing better than being nostalgic when taking pictures with a polaroid camera, an old school Nikon with film that you can develop, or in my case an instax camera. 

I have really grown to love my fuji instax camera. We gifted this one to Sierra for her birthday this year, and when she opened up the package she squealed with delight. She's always wanted one, just as I wanted one, and just as my mother had one, and now we all have one! 
When I first got my camera I wanted to try it out so one Sunday before church I gathered the kiddos, and we snapped all kinds of pics. They've never seen anything like it, and thought it was pretty cool. Lexie and Chelsea both love these cameras, and it  looks like this is one thing that's going to be on their christmas list this year. 

Nothing can ever replace tangible photos, and I really enjoy using my instant camera. The kids, and I have been going to town, literally, and having fun with it taking all kinds of pictures. I had to remind them that these photos are ones that cannot be "deleted" so if they come out with their eyes closed, looking possessed, or just plain weird to suck it up, and just treasure them. 
We have taken it to the beach, the playground, and Lexie even took it to EFY this summer. The people in her company thought that the instax camera was pretty cool. I love my kids, and will continue to take advantage of capturing moments, and making memories with them. That way they can look back at these photos when I'm super old and gray, and remember how much I loved taking pictures of them.  

Just as my mom did with me. These moments are priceless, and I am so grateful that my mother took the time out of her day when we were small children to capture these memories of me and my sister. 

Friday, August 28, 2015

ON GROWING UP, & FINDING JOY WHEN SCHOOL RESUMES.

As August is coming to an end I think about the days I spent with Noah. When it was just me and him. All day. I've been one lucky mama to have spent five years alone with him. Noah is definitely my last child, and in all honesty it's a little heartbreaking. I love my children. I loved them when they were little, and I love them even more as they grow older, but boy will I miss these days of just hanging with my little guy exploring the universe together. 

Time is such a thief, and I know that this year is going to fly. I'm going to try my best to slow down this school year, and find joy in all the grades that my children are in. Especially with it being Noah's kindergarten year. I want to hang on to those precious moments before they fleet away. I want him to be able to remember the things he will be taught, and to know that I was there in his classroom helping. I want him to know that i care about his education even if he's just coloring pictures of the alphabet. I want him to know that I was there every step of the way. I want him to know that I'm not one of those moms who was counting the days for school to start so that I can  have time to myself and have all the kids out of the house, but to know that I'm excited for him, and his sisters to go to school because of knowledge in what they'll be learning. I want him to know how excited I'll be to share my mornings with him before school.

School resumes next Tuesday for Noah and Chelsea, and this is the first year of having one of my kids attending PM kindergarten. At first I was a tad bit disappointed because I would have loved for him to walk to the bus with Chelsea, but after thinking about it I actually don't mind, and don't feel the need to call the school to make a change. I'm a stay at home mom which means more flexibility for me than those moms who have to rush kids to school because they have to work in the morning. So I am looking forward to spending my mornings with him like we have been for the past five past years except that I'll be sending him off to school at noon which means we'll have four hours to make pancakes together, go for a walk, and just talk to him about anything and everything. I'm all for it, and am excited not only for the time I'll have with him in the morning, but for him to go to school! 

It makes me feel good knowing that he'll be coming home at the same time & on the same bus as Chelsea. Even though they bicker she is very protective of him. I see it in her eyes. Especially when I scold him after he's done something naughty (which is very rare) I know that she will protect him from any bullies or mean kids. Unfortunately she experienced that last year, and luckily it only happened once. I'm glad she had the courage to open her mouth to tell me and her teacher about that issue. So I know that she will be there for her brother at least for one year to guide and protect while they attend the same school. 

Next year he'll have to fend for himself'! With three older sisters and a mom like me I'm sure he'll have no problem. Although it's bittersweet, I'm trying to find the sweet in the bitter part of realizing that he's growing up too fast. His words, and attitude are maturing. I do look forward to those moments because it's a sign that he's changing, and growing up to be the best boy he can be. 


Thursday, August 27, 2015

THE FIRST TIME WE MET LUCY THE ELEPHANT.

I will always remember the first time we ventured out to visit the historic Lucy in the fall of 2008. People weren't kidding when they said she was at least 60 feet tall! When my friend Maggie told me about her especially after sending me a postcard of "lucy the elephant" before moving up here I just had to see her for myself. The fact that she rests on Margate beach was a plus in my book. She was the perfect looking elephant, set on one of the nicest beaches on the jersey shore! 
It was late fall when we first set eyes on Lucy, and it was perfect because there were no tourists, and we practically had the beach all to ourselves. We did drive around Atlantic City, but in all honesty I was not impressed. Sorry, but Las Vegas takes the cake when it comes to blitz, and glamour. Not that I'm into all that, but I do love window shopping. Nonetheless we still drove around the city before stopping by to see Lucy, and she was quite a looker! 

I can't even begin to tell you how excited the girls were when we first moved up here. The first thing they said was, "we don't have to drive three hours to go to the beach anymore!" Besides jumping in the waves getting wet, and building sandcastles, the girls favorite part is digging up seashells. Which was all they did on this day being that it was 55 degrees! I think I really spoiled them by all the beach trips we took when we lived in North Carolina as well as the summer vacations we took in Seaside while living outwest. One thing for sure is that these girls love venturing out to the ocean whether it's summertime, fall or winter! 
I swear it seems as if this picture was taken yesterday. I look at it as if they are still middle school  and elementary age. Can you believe seven years have gone by since these photos were taken. Seven years! Where has the time gone! It's kind of hard to believe that the little one on the right will be in fifth grade this year, the one on the left will be a sophomore in high school, and the precious one in the middle is 20 years old, and will soon be serving an LDS church mission!! 

Time most certainly flies when you're having fun. I love my girls, and am so proud of who they are, and what they're becoming. It has also been such a blessing to add a little boy in the mix who obviously wasn't born when these photos were taken, but to know that these girls will set a good example for him puts me at ease, and I just love them all so dang much!! 

Sure is fun to hang on to these precious moments, as well as this moment when we brought Noah to see Lucy in 2011! 

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

THANKFUL FOR SMALL LIBRARIES.

I love books. I love the way old books smell whenever I enter a used bookstore, or even a library. It has been interesting to explore various libraries around my neck of the woods, and the other day my dear friend, and I along with our kids went to her local library to check out some books, and I'll tell ya...we could have been there all day! 

One thing I loved about this small, quaint library was the fact that it's super old school. Although it's a small library, it's big enough to accommodate enough people without getting claustrophobic, and her girls always leave with a ton of books that they enjoy reading which means their book selection is not too sparse. They don't have library cards with a bar code in the back. What they have are cards inside the books where they stamp the date, and you sign your name! Love that! Totally reminded me of my school days when I used to go to my school library, and check out books to read. One of my favorites books was The Watcher in the Woods. It was (still is) such a favorite of mine that I ended up getting it for free for being a part of the Texas Readers book club. Sound familiar to any my local Kingsvillian peeps?? The Watcher in the woods was the first young adult book i owned in which i read over, and over again. Poor thing was so dog eared that I think my mother got rid of it. No wonder I don't have it, but I guarantee I'll get my hands on a copy so my girls can read it! 
We had such a great day, and what I love about my friends is the fact that if you're a bookworm, I love you even more! I think that's why our girls get along so well because they all are all voracious readers, and have similar tastes in the books they read. 
Even though Chelsea is a few years younger than her girls she looks forward to reading certain books on their level. There are quite a few that are still too "young adult" for her so she'll wait to read them once she turns 12. She will stick with the Lemony Snicket, and Fabel Haven series for now! 
This is one library where they have a special play area for the kiddies. I understand that the play area is there for parents with small children, and I think that's great, but man was it a distraction for Noah. All he wanted to do was play with cars, and eat animal crackers. Since we weren't checking out any books for him here, I went ahead and had him play for a bit, and he was in heaven. 
I know reading is important to young children, and starting them off young is great, but they still need their play time, and if he's happy I'm happy. So playing with cars, and eating animal crackers made him happy which made me happy! 

And to be completely honest...I think we have half of the books that are on these book cases at home so keep on playing Noah. 


How cute is this doll house! I was so surprised that Chelsea didn't play with it. Really surprised because every once in a while she'll still play with her bitty baby, and dolls here at home. Kind of puts a sadness to this mama's face knowing that she may be getting out of the doll phase soon, and putting Josefina back in her box (tear...)
And what's a library without a movie section. Once I read a book that has been made into a movie I will watch it. The book has to be super good though, and so far the Maze Runner series is awesome! So looking forward to the Scorch Trials when it opens on the week of my birthday!

I tell ya this library is where it's at. You may think that because it's small and in an area where it's too hidden to even know it's an actual library, or feel that it's up to no good, it's not! Just like you can't judge a book by it's cover, you can't judge a library by it's location, or until you've actually entered in. I'm so glad we stopped in to check it out! Cute as can be, and the one man staff was very friendly (she's hiding behind her desk!)
After we spent a couple of hours in here, we then went to my local library which is a bit bigger, and has no play area. We all checked out a book, and Noah chose this one. 
^^^ Here he is flipping through the pages looking at the pictures. ^^^

He has now become obsessed with dogs, astronaut lingo, and outer space attire. Guess I'm going to have to make him some kind of jumpsuit so he can pretend that he's an astronaut (as if i can sew...NOT! ). He also wants a dog, but I told him not yet! 

I'm so thankful for the little libraries that are still functioning today. It's a shame that small libraries are slowing becoming obsolete due to funds being cut. That says a lot about our generation today. Kids don't seem to be reading enough, and adults have substituted an iPad or Kindle in place of a tangible book. Not me though. I'm too old school for my own good. Heck, I still carry a pad, and pen in my purse, and write people's phone numbers down in it instead of my iPhone! Sure wish Jersey would create some kind of book club for the youth like the one I was in when I was little. I know that incentive will encourage kids to read more. Plus...who wouldn't want free books! 

I personally love books, and one of these days I hope to have a "library" in my home. A room full of books. Kind of like the one in The Book Thief. Loved the setting of llsa's library where Liesel would go to find comfort in words, and escape. 

Words are inspiring, and no matter how old i get there is no way that I'll stop reading. 

No way. 

And I will always encourage my kids to do the same. 

Monday, August 24, 2015

THE ROCKAWAYS.

Summer is quickly winding down, and Chelsea kept reminding me that daddy hasn't gone to the beach with us all summer. These months are too precious to waste, including quality time with our children, and even though I feel like I'm doing my part as a mother to spend time with my teen, almost tween, and five year old  (including conversing with my 20 year old long distance!) I know that with my husband, we can do more. And family time is the best!

With Jon working half a day on Saturdays it's pretty impossible to be able to put a full day in at the beach, but this past weekend I didn't care. Once I got home from running a few errands I walked into the house grabbed his swim trunks, and with a stern voice said, "I know we have bills, and that your work so hard so that we can have what we need, but you really need to find time to spend time with these kids. So can you please get dressed because we are going to the beach." After a long sigh he hesitated and said, "what the heck, let's go."As much as i appreciate my hard working husband I just had to put my foot down. Making money is good and all, but family time is more important, and I don't ever want to lose sight of that!

The kids were excited, and we decided to head out to Rockaway beach. I absolute love this area in new york. The sand feels like powder, and as soon as you approach the water the waves immediately cover your torso, and instead of jumping on the waves, they jump on you! I'm grateful that Jon finally came so that he can go knee deep in water with the kiddos. For some reason Noah trusts him more than me when we go in the water. Probably because he heard that "daddy is a better swimmer than mommy."
While the kids were in the water with papa I read a few chapters of this book, and so far it's pretty good! After a while I stood up, and because I forgot to bring my bottoms was only able to get my feet wet, and snapchatted a few moments with the kiddos which you can see here, at r_jorgensen. That's my user name in case you were wondering. ;-)
Before we knew it, it was 7pm, and the lifeguards began calling everyone to get out of the water. Not sure what the rules are here compared to jersey beaches, or if there is a "swim at your own risk" sign, but it was getting late, and so we sat down, and dried off for a bit. Noah laid on the blanket with his binoculars, and saw so many dragonflies, and shrimp flies flying around. He even saw a helicopter too! 
We decided to see if we can find that fish taco stand that I hear every new york blogger ranting about, but to no avail. Apparently they haven't been open all year, so hopefully they'll be open next year summer so we can try them out. 

We did, however explore the rockaways just a little. We drove around, and found so many cool places in the corners of hidden pockets between 98th street, and 117th. The place we wanted to eat at was closed which gives us another reason to come back, and so before we headed out back into the city I decided to get down, walk around with the kiddos, and snap a few photos. 
Just a few, because, you know...we were about two hours away from home, needed to grab a bite, and be on our way!  
Told ya! I only captured like two photos, but snapchatted the whole time at the beach. The sun had gone down, and I was surprised that my iPhone even captured these photos without the flash, and that they came out pretty nice, but in order for us to capture more memories, and explore more shops at Rockaway beach before they close here is to leave early in the morning when the roosters are up! 

Happy Monday, and enjoy the rest of summer!