Friday, April 29, 2011

Date Nite

Husband and I are going to go on a date and catch a flick tonight!  I think the last time, we went to the movies was maybe over a year ago while I was still pregger with my son.  Nope, can't tell you what we watched.  It was that good!   Tonight we are going to see "Fast Five".  It was between "Fast Five" or "Water for elephants".  I'm not a big fan of Robert Pattinson and the reviews were not too good.  Besides, who can resist Paul Walker?

We are going to rush home first from work, spend a little time with the kids, eat a light dinner, tuck them in and then head out.  Grandparents will be over while we are out.  Hubby installed a camera (FOSCam) in the baby's room so that we can check in and see how the baby is doing while we are out.  There is a phone app you can download for free, is call CamViewer.   Is password proctected and secure.   There is also audio sound.  How cool is that.  Tonight will be our first time using this device and app.

By the way if you are in the area check out the TriBeCa Film Festival - Family Fair 2011 tomorrow from 10AM to 6PM. There will be lots pf kid friendly activities at the fair.  We'll also have good weather.  The film festival last until May 2nd.  So if you can't attend tomorrow do try and go before it ends.   Hope to see you there.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Summer Ambition

I finally joined the gym today and took one of the aerobic kick boxing classes at Lucille Roberts! It's been almost 8 months since I had my son. I think is time that I got off my arse and got motivated. I don't intend on completely losing myself just because I'm a mommy.  I'll like to feel and look good.  Besides, I still want to fit into my pretty clothes. 

It felt really good to sweat.   As disgusting as it sounds, I was delighted to find my shirt drench!  Dawn the instructor was awesome.  Maybe that is why the class was so crowded.  Everyone's got the one mission in mind, for - swimming suit bodies!  You should see these women, they meant business.  And ME, struggling to keep up, fumbling with my steps and punches.   Whenever I falter I will check out my neighbor and got me focusing again.  I had a moment, an embarassing moment, but - please don't laugh.... I found myself unable to control myself when I was doing jumping jacks or any sort of jumping for that matter.  O-K, I mean down there. Other mommies out there experience this?

I have also joined the NY Road Runner and signed my first run in June.  So get myself ready for the runs, im going to alternate gym and jogging.  I'm so excited. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Feeling the pressure

You get that guilty feeling at work as if you are not pulling your weight?  I joined the group early last year and then went on maternity in Sept.  Somewhat new in the group and then sort of not.  I work where men are the majority.   A lot of them single and/or young eager to prove themselves.  Stepping up and moving the bar.  Able to pull late nights and milk the benefits of free dinners and car service.  As well as go for drinks and smooch with the managers and bosses. And still be able to get in before I can.  I feel guilty leaving on the dot and dashing out.  I go home thinking about work and sometimes even dream about work!  How scary is that?  I get a guilty consious when I take days off.  Then when I return from missing out work a couple of days I get this terrible feeling.  I stay late when I can but I just can't help but wonder if just all me.  Is it possible to have it all?? Are there other moms feeling the same? Yes, I want it all. I guess you can if you can handle it.  Some people tell me to take it easy and stay as longest as I can.  Sometimes I feel like i need to look for something that doesn't require staying late and meeting deadlines. Then there is another part of me that wants give it the best.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Updated Hall of Science

The last time I was at the New York Hall of Science was over twenty years ago when I was in grade school.  For some reason I remember it as - boring and dark! 

We went this past weekend on Easter Sunday and it was nowhere near what I remembered.  Three words - educational, bright and modern!    I don’t know why I never thought of going and I pass by it every day.  Guess it never occurred to me - Hall of Science to be toddler appropriate and thought it was more for mature audiences.  Was definitely wrong.  There was plenty of things to do that kept the littles ones occupied.   I’m so glad my friend convinced us to go.  We were able to use our LICM membership to get discount tickets at Hall of Science - one free adult and child.  We purchased our membership in Long Island Children’s Museum in February and we’ve done so much with it.   We have user our membership several times already.  We were also able to use when we visited in Boston's Children's Museum earlier in March where we were in town visiting family and friends.   Great value and option to take your kids to.  For today's visit only had to pay $11 for the 2nd adult, Wyatt is free since he is still a baby.  NY Hall of Science was super easy to get to, is right off the LIE.   If you have enough time and feeling to do more you can visit Queens Zoo just down the block.  You can pay $10 for parking or do street parking.   We got lucky, the attendant wasn’t at his post so we pulled right in.  Surprisingly the place was pretty packed on a holiday but we still manage to find parking near the entrance.  Once you pay, they hand you stickers that you wear on to show that you paid.  Just as we pass the entrance and peeling the stickers to put on, we overheard 2 people ahead of us talking about sharing the stickers with friends waiting outside.  I know it doesn’t have anything to do with me but I don't totally approve the idea.  Would it bother you?  Do you think is ok for them to?

Anyhow, Megan had a good time running around with her friend.  She enjoyed playschool area, Great Hall and the playground the most.    We left at closing and just before the rain started to come down.  It was certainly a quiet ride home.  We will definitely go back again

Monday, April 25, 2011

Cake Pops and Easter

A bunch of us friends got together for Easter at Johnny and Mey’s in Jersey.   Our lucky family to host our 1st annual Easter event.  Poor Johnny didn’t get home till 2AM, found himself waking up to a 5AM emergency call to rush back to work.  Then to come home to a full house with 9 active toddlers running around and ready to hunt for eggs in his home. 

To make things easier for the hostess and host, we initially agreed that each family contributed to something this was before knowing Johnny had to work.  Potluck makes it so much easier especially if you are expecting a lot of people.  Even thought the event wasn’t planned at our house, just baking and putting together the bags was exhausting.  Imagine doing it all?  Our gracious host and hostess provided yummy Latin food.  I offered to put together goody bags and bake sweets. 

I’m not much of a cook or baker.  Although I decided to bake sweets for this event.   Starbucks gave me the idea - cake pops.  Their new line of sweets.  They are so cute which made me want to make them for Easter.  I think cake pops are going to be the next big sensation like the cupcakes!  I did a little more digging and discovered “Bakerella” on the internet!  After checking her out, I ran out and bought myself her book.  Love it.  I never really baked before - let’s just say I never baked this much before in such a short time.  

To prepare myself for Easter - I baked twice before my big bake.  Brought my first batch to work to shared with my fellow colleagues and then another batch for my daughter’s daycare.  Made both variation – cake balls and cake pops.  I used yellow cake from a box for my cake pops and dipped them in different color chocolate to make bunnies, chicks and Easter eggs.  As for the balls, I made them look like bite size chocolates with red velvet cake inside.  They were a hit.  Everyone loved bite size cakes and seriously who can resist cake on a stick?!   They are also fantastic for little munchkins and their little hands.  I did alter the recipe by using less than recommended frosting to just 1/3. 

As for gift bags – I made it simple.  Order “Max and Ruby” story and coloring books from Amazon, also added a box of small crayons, voila.  HOWEVER, my little gift bags did not turn out how I envisioned because my LOVELY husband accidently threw my Amazon package into the trash.  My only save was the 4 books that were shipped separately!  The night before the get-together I ran to B&N and target and couldn’t find any!  "Max and Ruby" are hard to find.  I had to improvise and picked up other books as replacement.  Arghhhh... It was a disappointment on my part but the kiddies didn't know any difference.  Lesson learned, don’t trust your hubby when it comes to cleaning and picking up! 

Happy Easter Everyone.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Meet Mickey & Minnie

Took my 2 ½ yr old daughter to Disney World for the first time.  People told us that is probably too early to take her there and won't remember much.  They are probably right but we went any way.  Was a bit overwhelming and tiring but we still manage to have an amazing time.   I can now understand why kids under 3 go in for free! 
We opted to go during the first week of April before Spring break rush for 5 days.  We were able to find direct airfare for less than $200 per person on JetBlue leaving on friday evening.   Didn't want to take too many days off from work,  so to make the most time we decided to account saturday and sunday into our trip. We opted to go during the first week of April before Spring break rush for 5 days.  We were able to find direct airfare for less than $200 per person on JetBlue leaving on friday evening.    
Didn't want to take too many days off from work,  so to make the most time we decided to account saturday and sunday into our trip.  We had everything packed the night before so that on Friday after work, we were able to rush home from work and go straight to the airport.    Traveling alone can be a lot of hassle and adding a child to the equation can be worse.  We had to decide on whether we wanted to take the carseat or the stroller, we went with the car seat because we rented a car and didn't intend to rent the carseat even though we knew we can but we wanted to bring our own.  For this reason we got, "Traveling Toddler Car seat Accessory Strap".  It was hard to strap on at first and but once you get the hang of it, it aint too bad.  She love it and asked to sit on the strapping carseat.  Otherwise if no car seat, go with "Ride-on Carryon".   Is an ingenious idea especially when you need go from terminal to terminal.  However it can't replace the stroller.   Unless you want to travel with a suitcase everywhere you go.  Both gadget are smart concepts and definitely makes traveling easier with a toddler!  JetBlue never disappoints me.  Love that they still serve drinks and snacks.  We got to  Orlando in less than 2 hours.  Megan was really excited since it was also her first time on the plane.  So excited that she didn’t sleep on the flight as we were hoping she would.  Megan was all wired up and wide awake.   You can tell she was fighting it because 20 minutes before landing fatigue hit her.  She was completely out as we picked up our rental car and we didn’t finally tuck her in until midnight.  We stayed at Wyndham Bonnet Creek Resort.    Perfect resort for families.  We had a 2 bed/2bath room equipped with kitchen.  There was plenty of things to do at the Resort if we opted not to go to the Park.  We schedule it so that on first day – we relax, explore and food shop,  2nd day visit Magic Kingdom, 3rd Epcot, 4th lounge and relax by the pool and 5th day unwind and depart.  We made bfast every morning to get our day started.  Bonnet Creek Resort is only 10 minutes from Magic Kingdom.  Our room also had the view of Epcot and we able to see the fireworks in the evening.  I think we only saw it once when were in on the 2nd night.  All the other nights we were out late.  Resort also offers shuttles to the parks which made it really convenient.
Megan was able to enjoy most rides both at Magic Kingdom and Epcot to keep us busy.  Also at this age they get tired easily and still require naps.  My daughter zonked out both days for a good 3hrs in the middle of the afternoon.   If an adult can get tired, imagine a toddler at 2 1/2!  If I had to do it differently, I would have rented a city mini stroller instead of the Disney stroller from the park.  Strollers at Disney does not recline and is just hard plastic.  When she felt as asleep we had pull it in an angle so the kids can get a better nap and drapped our sweaters over it to shade from the sun.  Otherwise she had a fantastic time with her friend.  Oh yes, do take advantage of the Fast-pass.  And do book in advance if you want to do character dinning.  I think this can only get better.  We are going to try and do it again next year if not next year definitely the year after.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Yo Gabba Gabba

Colin’s first Birthday Part-ee! Selina my girlfriend and mom did an amazing job coordinating it. She is a teacher at a private school in Manhattan. She is unbelievably patient and hands-on when it comes to kids. Sometimes I wished I was a bit more patient like her. She is also very creative and resourceful when it comes to planning. She threw her son, Colin a Yo Gabba Gabba party.

The party was held at the school where she teaches. She was able to rent a space at the school to throw the party. The school looks like it belongs in the Harry Potter movie with manicure lawns and impressive buildings. The school is currently going through some restoration. 

She had balloons tied to the doors so the guest can find their way to the party.  As soon as you get closer you'll notice familiar faces on the happy colorful balloons - why of course the characters from Yo Gabba Gabba!  I couldn't believe they were stickers.  She had a great space to work with too.  She had an open area where she setup a projector on one wall with the show running in the background and a bunch of equipment scatterred throughout the the room for the kids to play. The kids loved the gigantic legos and blocks. The kids had a ball building and sharing.  The equipment kept the kids occupied the whole time and little supervision was needed.  They had fun, we had fun! 
As for food, she had it catered from a Philipino restaurant, she arranged a long table all spread out as a buffet area with drinks in the middle of the room. The food was definitely interesting and different.  Then on each side of the Buffet table were two long tables for the guest to sit, beautifully decorated with center pieces and colorful table settings.  The place didn't need much decoration. Then along on by window she had a round table where the cake and gift bags were spread out and another table for the gifts. The gift bags were adorable and it was personalized for each little guest. She got assorted coloful paper bags from Party City and placed the names for a personal touch.  As party favors, she got plain little t-shirts and placed character faces on them. Very cute and practical. Selina also gather the kids together during the party to do circle time - did the parachute, dancing and singing with the kids. She was also able to find DJ Lance radio piƱata.  It was a big hit for all the kids incuding the older ones.  Before you knew 3hrs went by. With all the excitement and playing - our birthday boy certainly had a long day.  We later found him yawning on his mommy's arm.  Everyone had an amazing time and the party was a total success. Hope Colin did too! Happy Birthday Colin!