Category Archives brothers

Two Kickballs Required

Dear NHL and JSL,

Spring break is basically over. It has been a relatively relaxing one spending time with both of you. Thanks to Passover, we stayed close to home most of the time. The weather was cooler and did not allow us to pack a picnic for the park.

Just before break, JSL and I went shopping to get a few things. While there, I walked by the big display of kick balls. I knew that NHL wanted one after using them at school. We walked over and picked one out. Little did I know that it would be very popular with the two of you. So much so that we HAD to get a second one.

The two kickballs went with you and Daddy to the park the other day where you played Volley-Basketball. A few days later, we went back to the park together. It was fun watching the two of you play, run, and get so much energy out. You truly did seem to enjoy having your own kickballs and even made great games using both of them together.

Volley Basketball Time

Yes, some days it is the simple things that make me smile and the two of you so happy. I know this will be something we do over the summer.



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Glasses Envy

Dear NHL & JSL,

This was a big week for the two of you. As a family, we celebrated Purim several times.

Purim 2012

NHL, last weekend you had your eyes checked and found out that you need to wear glasses all the time. They came in on Wednesday, so we picked them up just before going to the community Purim celebration. In an instant, you could not only see clearly, but you had grown up. You were so happy to have your new “Harry Potter” glasses and could not wait to show them to everyone.

Glasses for NHL

JSL, what shocked me was your reaction to your brother’s glasses. You were so upset. You cried when we told you he needed them, you cried when he picked them out, and you had a tantrum when NHL picked them up to take home. I could not imagine what the problem was. When we asked you, you told us you were now the only one that did not wear glasses. So, after NHL got his glasses and a pair of clip-on sunglasses, we picked something special out for you.

Happy Little Kid

Yes, a simple pair of Buzz Lightyear flip sunglasses saved the day. Now, we just need to keep helping NHL to adjust to the new clear world.



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Brother Snuggles and Being Silly

Dear NHL and JSL,

There are days when the two of you fight like siblings always will. Those are not the moments that I care to remember. Of course, I know Uncle I and I used to fight a lot when we were growing up. What I love is that the two of you genuinely are really good with each other.

The other morning, as I was rushing around getting everyone ready for a day of school, something caught my eye. The two of you were curled up on the couch. It was too cute to watch the two of you just resting and watching something together while waiting for clothes to get dressed.

By the time I pulled out my camera to take a photo, NHL was on to me.

Caught with the camera

NHL, you saw me coming and decided to be a clown. First, there was the tongue and then you were suddenly sleepy. Of course, JSL, this made you laugh at your big brother.

Goofy brothers

These moments help to melt away the other stresses that are happening. The two of you truly are great brothers to each other and I love watching you grow up together.



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The Year that was 2011

It is hard to believe that 2012 is here. Once again, the year went by with a lot of fun, photos, and memories. Here are just some of the highlights from the year that was 2011.


  • Mother Nature started her tricks with a lot of snow that came our way. We had fun making memories with the sled in our own yard.
  • I started writing Education posts at The Disney Driven Life and introduced it to everyone. Thank you to J.L. for the amazing opportunity. I look forward to getting back on track in 2012.
  • NHL lost three more teeth during the first three months of the year. Much relief as they came out without dental assistance.

Lots and Lots of Snow

February 2011:

  • The Snowpacalypse welcomed the month of February threatening 18-30 inches of snow. It left lots of the white stuff and tons of ice damage. Our neighbors probably had a laugh with knee-highs on our roof.
  • With all of the freezing cold, even the little guy was trying to ride Tony Pony to Disney World to escape. Of course, we were gearing up for Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2011 in March.
  • We continued to take the boys to introduce them to hockey. They had a blast checking out all of the extras between the on ice action.

Greeting the Devil Dawg

March 2011:

  • Mother Nature teased us with warmth to melt snow mountains early in the month, only to knock us down with an ice storm to remember. Crackling trees and ice pelting the house is hard to listen to in the dark.
  • A magical trip to Walt Disney World for the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration allowed me to see amazing friends, learn, and have fun with my family. Lots of items from that trip were shared throughout the months ahead.
  • Of course, the reality world hit hard once we got back from our magical adventure. Tough decisions were ahead and left my head spinning. All of this made me remember the wise words of Rene SylerThe Good Enough Mother.

Magical Memories

April 2011:

  • Passover preparations were dominant this month. Making lists, shopping, and getting the house ready. Of course, we also captured memories of the holiday itself.
  • Lots of moments where I wished I was not the adult who had to make decision. Thank goodness, JSL helped to keep me smiling along the way.
  • A routine visit to the dentist for NHL revealed the need to see an orthodontist. We made the appointment for several months later in June, but knew the missing adult tooth was going to be something to contend with.

Views from Seder 2

May 2011:

  • Even moms need field trips. Yes, the weekend before Mother’s Day, Cutestkidever and I jumped into the car for a lunch date with Rene Syler.
  • JSL’s 4th birthday and new love for Jake and the Never Land Pirates required working on a theme for his party. Supplies were bought and cupcakes were made.
  • The sun coming back also provided an opportunity to test out our new grill, plant some veggies, and attempt to regrow our front lawn.

Cousins at play

June 2011:

  • After taking NHL out of a school he had been in since kindergarten, TechyDad and I watched as our second grader started to flourish in a new school. Once again, we started to believe in the education system. This entire drama made it SO hard to bite my tongue and keep a lot of things to myself.
  • Father’s Day we spent a fun day together. We had lunch out, went mini-golfing, and had dinner with Nana and Papa. It reminded me of how special these moments together are.
  • The end of June marked a major milestone for TechyDad and me. We celebrated out 10th wedding anniversary. Memories of our special day, honeymoon at Walt Disney World, and everything over the ten years together came flooding back. Of course, the day of our actual anniversary was a house nightmare. A plumbing fix resulted in us moving out for several days.

Reliving our honeymoon almost 10 years later

July 2011:

  • The month started with a visit out to see my brother and his family for 4th of July. While there, we went cherry picking and beat our previous record. A day at Niagara Falls was also included in the fun adventures.
  • Both of the boys were home with me for the entire summer. We looked for fun activities to do. We often ended up at the library for learning and crafting.
  • We also spent a lot of time at Michaels crafting our way around the world. Yes, Michaels and Crayola teamed up to make a great passport of crafts for kids to do that were mostly free. The kids learned so much and we found some great new crafts to try later on.


August 2011:

  • At the end of July, we started to think about a magical getaway to celebrate our 10th anniversary. Shortly after this, we booked a fantastic trip to relive our honeymoon at Walt Disney World. Everything was planned from the hotel, dining, and place for the kids to stay over Labor Day.
  • NHL turned 8 in August and requested lion cupcakes. We documented the construction process and birthday celebration.
  • The end of the month was heart breaking. We watched as Hurricane Irene wrecked havoc up and down the east coast. Thanks to the fear of the kids being stuck with no power and our flight getting canceled, we postponed our big trip to Disney. Being responsible adults was tough.

Lion Cupcakes

September 2011:

  • The boys started back to school after Labor Day. NHL loved his new school and was settling into third grade. JSL thrived at his familiar nursery school and we had lots of fun going apple picking with his class.
  • As a Type-A personality, I am a planner. So it was very rare for me to pack up in just a few days notice to head to New York City for the first ever SheStreams Conference. It was an amazing time seeing friends, learning, and getting away for a weekend. A huge thank you to all of those that made it a magical and empowering weekend.


October 2011:

  • As a third grader, NHL started to take band in school. He picked percussion instruments and drum practice even got a Disney touch thanks to Nana and Papa.
  • During the month of October, two large packages arrived to host parties. The boys loved learning and playing with LeapFrog items during the Learn, Create, and Share Party. The LeapPad had been an amazing addition to our family learning electronics. HexBugs also invaded our house for some glow-in-the-dark holiday fun.
  • Halloween was a lot of fun thanks to everyone staying healthy. NHL was Darth Vader, JSL was Jedi Tigger, and even TechyDad dressed up. Of course, Snowtober threatened to make things more interesting just a day before heading out.

Halloween 2011

November 2011:

  • The start of the month meant going to a fun event for bloggers at Price Chopper, headquarters. The Price Chopper Holiday Cheer afternoon showcased endless holiday entertaining ideas. Of course, I wanted to highlight the Decadent Desserts line.
  • This was also the month that my entire family fell in love with Susan Egan. I had been lucky enough to see Susan at Disney Social Media Moms in March, but her new CD review was a hit in our house. My little guy even had a crush on her and certainly did care more than Nina.
  • The boys learned about what an aufruf is and spent a lot of time with family in November during Thanksgiving weekend.

Silly Turkeys

December 2011:


There were so many other things that made 2011 special and amazing. Thank goodness that is what archives are for. We can look back, laugh, cry, remember, and reflect.

What are some of your favorite part of the year that was 2011?

It's Me

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Goodbye Crib and Hello Bunks

Dear NHL and JSL,

Today is a really big day. This afternoon, we are finally getting bunk beds for the two of you. We offered to let you each have your own room, but neither of you wanted to be alone. Since we can not fit two twin beds into the space, we had to make the bedding go upward.

We have spent the last two weeks going around looking at different options. We fell in love with a set of twin over twin bunks at Raymour & Flanigan. Then, we had to make the choice between the darker and lighter woods.

The options

I think the two of you liked the darker wood option for only one reason. You adored the pirate bedding and space items within the decorating. We explained to you that none of those items come with the furniture. Thursday night, we went to the store and a very patient man named Michael at Raymour & Flanigan helped us to finalize our purchase. Much to our surprise, there were still slots for delivery and set up Saturday.

This morning, we will be working on your room to get ready for the delivery truck. NHL, your bed mattress will be moving to the bunk bed, but the box spring and frame need to be stored. Then, you will be the new owner of the top bunk.

Moving on up

JSL, this will be a big milestone for you. You are finally getting a big boy bed. Your toddler bed, and old crib, will likely be given away or sold. When I took the photos of your room, my heart skipped a beat. Suddenly it hit me that my baby is growing up way too quickly. I have a feeling you are going to love your new bed, and hope that it will be more comfortable for you to sleep the entire night.

Bye-Bye Bed

No doubt that there will be more tears when we put everything away, but it is the right thing to do. The two of you need this change and it will create many new memories for the two of you as brothers. Daddy and I wish you many sweet dreams in your new bunk beds.




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