Posts tagged #Mommy Blog

A Texan Update

Alright y'all, The Sassy Salmon has been a little serious as of late, so without further adieu I bring you real life stories from moving across the country with 3 kids ages 4 and under, 1 labradoodle, and 3 ridiculous adult humans (myself included but my husband missing from that crazy equation). 

Moving halfway across the country is hard. I would like to give a shout out to my inlaws who drove the trek with me since Ben had to be in Atlanta for the first few (ahem 6) weeks. And snaps for my dad and Mitch (my brother's father in law) for driving down from Kentucky to conquer my Honey-Do List. Also, I'd like to revisit the part where my mother-in-law and I were locked in a van with twin 4 year olds and a baby that eats every 3-4 hours for two days in a row. To those who say mother-in-laws and daughter-in-laws CANNOT get along, I give you this. In addition, I don't want to brag about my awesome MIL... but she has quite literally attached me to a pump and milked me like a cow when I was determined to get some milk for my NICU babies while bedridden, unable to do so myself. ISH gets real in the Salmon family once you take them vows. So I guess a road trip across the country isn't that outlandish given our history. 

I digress. 

Before embarking on our long journey, I may or may not have given the road trip rules that nobody eats or drinks until we get to TEXAS. There would be no stopping, dawdling, tourist attractions, and all meals would be eaten while on the road. Mama had some serious mileage goals and gosh darn it we were going to make good time. For the most part, I'd say we all did well. There were a few hiccups like Jude refused to follow my road trip rules (#hungrybaby) and a man backed into one of the cars while we were at a gas station - but thanks to me screaming like a banshee he slowed down just enough to try to figure out why a random blonde woman was yelling & running at him that the impact was minimal and there wasn't any damage (other than the damage it did to my heart by triggering palpitations). So I guess no harm no foul.

All that to say, we did eventually make it to Texas and everyone still loves each other. 

Now that we're here, I'd like to give you an update on all we've seen because West Texas is definitely different from Raleigh, North Carolina... or all of North Carolina really.

The twins can't identify the American flag or the North Carolinian flag to save their lives, but gosh darn it they already know the Texan flag. IT IS EVERYWHERE. A few days in we visited a store that had half a dozen Texan flags flying outside and the girls asked about it & "Why are there so many?!" Ever since then they get CRAZY PUMPED about seeing the Texan flag. I'll be driving down the road and they'll start losing their minds, "MOMMY MOMMY!!! LOOK!! IT'S A TEXAN FLAG!" I don't get it - but somehow the indoctrination has already set in. 

We have also seen lots of cactus, windmill farms, the most GORGEOUS sunsets, plateaus that people refer to as mountains (um... no), and a person riding a horse down the middle of the street. Which that isn't so odd except the street is in MY NEIGHBORHOOD. Like a normal residential area. With houses. And fences. And small backyards. So I'm not quite sure where the horse was going, but I definitely had to stop and InstaStory that junk. I've also seen two kids dressed in rodeo attire practicing their lasso skills in the mall parking lot. Because you know, what better place to lasso each other than right outside of Dillards. #westtexas 

"MOM!!!! Don't talk about my thighs on the interwebs! How embarrassing?!"

"MOM!!!! Don't talk about my thighs on the interwebs! How embarrassing?!"

Friday Night Lights is a real thing around here and Jude gets asked at least once a day if he's going to be a football player when he grows up. He usually gives the friendly strangers a blank stare until they start grabbing his "football" thighs. At that point he smiles because... well... he's been conditioned by my constant gnawing of his thighs. THEY ARE JUST THAT DELICIOUSLY CHUBBY. 

In other news, the twins started pre-school midyear so they're having a blast catching up with the kids in their class. They learned about the letters M & N their first few weeks and every day when I pick them up I ask them if they learned any new words that start with those letters. Noel without missing a beat always replies with a few correct words and then ends with "M is for ICE CREAM. Noooooo, that's silly. But speaking of ice cream, can we go get some?" And usually we head to our Chick-fil-A for a sweet treat and kisses from Daddy. 

But doesn't he look so handsome? 

But doesn't he look so handsome? 

Speaking of sweet treats, I may or may not have walked in on a random man getting dressed when I went to drop off #TheFabulousMrHanks for his grooming appointment. Nothing says, "Hi I'm new here" like walking into a stranger's home thinking it's your groomer's. And because I was shocked, I immediately yelled SORRY and just slammed the door... ACCIDENTALLY LOCKING MR. HANKS IN THE HALF DRESSED STRANGER'S HOUSE. As I ran to my car still unaware that I didn't have my dog, the kind and understanding gentleman let Hanks out while simultaneously throwing a shirt on. Not making eye contact and stammering back to my minivan, I tried to apologize and explain that I was looking for my groomer who gave me his address. "Oh, no worries!" he said nonchalantly like I had not just seen him in his knickers, "The grooming business is out back. Folks mistake my house for it all the time." Oh OKAY GREAT, yes now I feel 1000 times better about this whole situation. 

Y'all, when I said the good folks of West Texas were the kindest I wasn't lying. 

All joking aside, we are loving Texas and getting to know the sweet people of Abilene. We've found a great little church and are slowly getting invested in the community. The people here are incredibly hospitable and we have been so blown away by the gracious welcome. Uprooting was and still is hard sometimes, but we are so thankful for this adventure and we're more than excited to be in Abilene. 

Here's to many more Texan adventures (but hopefully no more walking in on half-dressed strangers)!

Much love,

 

 

Three's

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Today I tried to clean out my minivan while letting the twins play with chalk on the driveway. Yes I really thought that while I threw books, toys, 19238417234 cheerios and stale donut holes out of our car, they'd sit there and have a grand time.

(CUE all the experienced moms laughing knowing exactly what’s about to happen)

Rookie mistake.

As soon as Mr. Hanks jumped in the car and started helping me clean (ie. eating the 19238417234 cheerios) the girls followed suit and started jumping in and licking up the cheerios like a dog as well. After all, they really do think that they’re dogs sometimes. Which is ok, because Mr. Hanks thinks he’s human. It’s a trade off. Anyways, after an hour of wrangling the three of them… with the last straw being the HUGE bag full of trash (and I confess some fresh dog poo that I had just picked up out of our yard) being dumped BACK INTO MY VAN while I was cleaning the twins seats (which is a whole nother ball game)… I finally got smart and buckled them in, brought out snacks, and turned a movie on.

Mom wins. Twins win. Mr. Hanks wins (bc air conditioning… duh).  And alas our DISGUSTING van was clean (really... it was SO gross) so a HUGE win for my uber clean and organized husband.  

But I feel like this summarizes all of my parenting experiences. Try to do something new or enter a new parenting stage and the beginning is a HUGE COLASSAL STRUGGLE... BUT eventually we figure out a way to confine the twins, er, I mean we find a way that works for our family.  The three's definitely started out this way. The last 2 months we were all struggle bussing it with empty promises of never going out in public again and boarding school, and then somewhere, somehow, we found our footing. Nothing magical happened… rather it just eventually clicked or we moved onto the next stage. And this happens with every new stage... EVERY TIME. I'm all... WOE IS ME WE'LL NEVER SURVIVE and then BAM I'm all like THIS IS THE BEST STAGE EVER. (I just don't know where the girls get their dramatics from).

ALAS... in celebration of it finally clicking (kind of)… I wanted to document a few of our fav things about the twins during this stage because had you asked me a few weeks ago what my favorite things were I would've looked at you with crazy eyes and yelled, "THERE ARE NO GOOD THINGS," while sipping a venti red eye and reminiscing about the good ole days when I slept and peed by myself. 

So while I'm in a good mood... here we go...

  • Noel refers to herself as “Foel” despite being able to say the word “No!” quite fluently and frequently. And Felicity refers to Noel as "O-el." SWOON.
  • Felicity loves apple juice and Foel loves orange juice. And they love to argue about which one they’re getting, despite the fact that I give them their favorite almost every time.
  • Our nap time routine includes at least 25 minutes (minimum) of me telling them to “not get out of your bed,” “no you cannot ‘sleep’ with sissy,” and “DO NOT GET TRAPPED UNDER THE FITTED SHEET AGAIN.”
  • They love bossing Mr. Hanks around as if he’s their brother. “No Hanks, Stop that. Come COME Hanks.” Also, dressing him up is a recent fav pastime.
  • They’re bossy in the car and know the routes to the YMCA and Target. Not sure what it says about me when my kids get mad at me while on our way to church and start yelling, “No mama, THAT WAY. Go that way to target!!!” #targetaddictprobs
  • They love to listen to music, or mooozick, as they pronounce it.
  • They talk a lot, but still use their baby jabber and twin talk. Just today Noel kept repeating some phrase that I had NO CLUE WHAT IT WAS and Felicity repeated it at me all like come on woman don’t you understand her?!  Felicity got so frustrated with my lack of understanding Noel that she huffed off saying the phrase on repeat and brought a toy over to Noel and said it again while looking at me like… idiot.
  • Speaking of attitude… Noel has mastered the pout and Felicity has mastered the temper tantrum. Like they’re pro’s at it. I think the 2’s were a practice round for 3’s. During their 2’s, they learned HOW to do it (increase in quantity), there 3’s are for learning WHEN to do it at the best time to get maximum results (increase in quality). Bless it, I think they’re learning strategy.
  • Noel has learned that she’s funny.
  • Felicity has found her voice.
  • Their love for each other and care for our family is astounding. One second I think they’re about to strangle the other, but as soon as one of them falls or gets hurt… the other one is right there asking, “Oel, you ok?” or “Licity, you ok?” Or if the other one sneezes they’re quick to sweetly say, “Bless you sissy!”
  • On that same note, they’ve learned what makes the other one happy and will bring it to them whenever they’re sad/in trouble/mad/etc.
  • Teaching them things is FUN during this stage because they love learning new things. Whereas teaching them things during the 2’s gave me heart palpitations and hives (only a slight exaggeration).
  • They love seeing the moon at night... and they get confused when it's cloudy at night and they can't find it. We hear "Where'd the moon go Mama?" 2379 times on a 5 minute car ride on these nights. 
  • They refer to Cinderella as “Tanglerella” & they refer to Tangled as “Tangled” soooooo…. I’m not really sure what happened there but we just go with it.
  • They still say “Hold you?” instead of “Hold me?”
  • Did I mention that they’re bossy? Felicity tells us all the time when brushing her hair, “EASY DADDY!” or when putting an item on her plate she wants us to put it in a specific spot and says, “PUT IT RIGHT THERE.” I keep telling them that we don’t negotiate with terrorists… but they don’t seem to care.
  • They are DADDY’S girls for sure, but when something scares or hurts them, they want their mama. So we both win.
  • Speaking of Daddy… They love to stand on the porch and cheer him on as he leaves for work in the morning.
  • They love planes & helicopters. Oh, and BTW... helicopter is pronounced “Helicocker.” And yes, we laugh. EVERY TIME.

WHEW. If there are any of you who actually read that whole list and you aren’t a relative… wow. I applaud you. It might seem like a lot… but I know myself well enough to know that I will forget some of these things one day if I never write them down. So alas… the forever long blog post.

Alright. That’s all for now. Here’s to the girls being 3 and surviving and ENJOYING all that this year will entail!

Much love,

Thing 1 & Thing 2

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"These Things will not bite you.
they want to have fun.'
then, out of the box
came Thing Two and Thing One!
and they ran to us fast.
they said, 'how do you do?
would you like to shake hands
with Thing One and Thing Two?"

Yall. I never knew how much fun Halloween was until we moved into this house. Last year, Ben & I had just closed on the house so we turned our front porch light off and worked upstairs in our house without blinds while herds of children swarmed by our house bitterly watching us paint through the windows all the while wondering why we had no candy. We were those Horrible. New. Neighbors. 

This year we had to redeem ourselves & I was determined to do so. 

Soooooo.... our friends and their kiddos came over and we shoved our faces with BOOritos from Chipotle and prepped for the masses. And can I just say... one thing I've learned over the last few months is that life is done better in community. It really is. A house full of laughing children, friends who know and love each other, and good food. Those are the things that make this broken world much more bearable. Community is God's gift to us, that is for certain. And so last night, amonst gobblins and witches and super heroes, we took our families door to door and watched our little neighborhood come alive... Together. 

And our girls... Oh bless it. THEY HAD A BLAST. Here are a few... and by few I mean a dozen... photos from the night. 

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Thing1&2Cheesing

These moments right here. These pictures capture so much joy. And that last one of the girls... IS MY FAVORITE. Sisters. Forever. No matter what. <3

My one regret? We snapped all of these photos before our friends arrived... AND somehow we missed getting a group photo of all 7 children. BOO. SO BUMMED. (see what I did there? womp womp). Oh well! But still... so many good memories made last night. 

<---- But this. I did capture.

When my sweet friend was loving on my little... I snapped this one. And friends... this is what I was talking about. Community. Such a blessing. Such a gift. I hope November is full of love and community for each of you as we enter the season of Thanksgiving. 

 

 

Much love,