Rosh Hashanah and the PJ Library

Rosh Hashanah literally means "head of the new year". It is customary to hear the shofar blown to awaken the spirit and soul, to eat apples dipped in honey for a sweet new year, and as we do for most Jewish holidays- a celebratory meal with friends and family. This year I received a grant from the PJ Library to have a little birthday party for the world. We had some of RT's toddler friends over for a meal, some play time, and singing Happy Birthday.
It's so nice to have a houseful of kids all playing and running around together. I love when RT gets excited about having his friends over. It totally makes the toddler tornado of mess worth it! For those who don't know, the PJ Library is a nonprofit that sends a monthly book to Jewish kids. These books focus on holidays, hebrew learning, Shabbat, and Jewish values. 
This time of year is busy, bustling, and fun. But it's always hard too. It's no secret that I struggle with some of the life and death passages, prayers, and imagery that the high holidays brings. I flat out disagree with some of it, and I don't understand a lot of it. Kol Nidre, the night before Yom Kippur was the most important of the year for my dad. Going to that service without him is almost as gut wrenching as the Yizkor, or Remembrance service on the afternoon of Yom Kippur. But to remember someone means not just remembering what you loved about them, but to do the things they loved. Memory is a theme woven into the fabric of Judaism again and again and again. We say "may the memory of the righteous endure as a blessing", and a blessing they have been. I wish my dad could have seen my two boys grow up and that we could have attended services together. But a new year brings a new cycle of holidays, a chance to reflect, and a chance to improve on the year before. It also brings new milestones, new ticks on the growth chart, and new experiences. Wishing you a happy, healthy, and sweet new year, Shana Tova! 

3 Months

Month three has arrived for our little guy. In the last month he has slept through the night for the first time (once or twice... but not normally yet!), smiled a ton, started cooing at us, and developed a little bit of his personality. We have gotten into a better routine for morning drop offs and bedtime and I've spent a lot of time grabbing as many snuggles as possible in between. We attended Ronnie's first football game, got a new car for more space, and unpacked a ton more things in the new house. (We have kitchen counter tops! It's getting there!)

High Holidays (Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur) are right around the corner for us. That seems to always be the peak of the roller coaster that is the school year. From here, the "just getting into it" time seems to be over and the "thick of it" is here until late Spring. Halloween is right around the corner; then the holiday rush begins. For now, I'm just trying to hold on to the last bits of sunlight until 7:00, sounds of the ice cream man in the afternoons, and play dates before dinnertime.

Birthday twins!


Image result for Abominable
If you're in our Facebook group you know that we work with a few promotion companies and give away movie screening tickets from time to time. Last weekend myself, a gaggle of kids, and several mamas and families who responded got to see an early showing of Abominable. I'm not paid anything to do these promotions. I don't even have to post about them, but this movie pulled on the heart strings and was so incredible that I knew I had to. The movie is centered around a captured magical yeti who breaks free to try and find his family. He gets help from Yi, a busy girl who is running from a loss, a self-centered Jin, and playful Peng. There are themes of family, adventure, loss, perseverance,  friendship, kindness to animals, and the scenery is beautiful. I cried likely harder than I should have for a kid's movie, but I truly loved it. It comes out this weekend, and you should totally grab your kids and go see it!

(omg I just played the trailer to make sure it was legit before putting it on here and I'm crying again. What's wrong with me!?) 

She Works Hard for the Mommy V. 9

You might remember a while back that I had a post on home ownership blues and all of the craziness that was happening with our home. It has been an insane ride. I am happy to say that we did get out of that contract and into a new one with the help of Reena, our wonderful real estate agent. Reena has become a friend to me in the long (two freaking years) search for the perfect house, and did I mention she is in the top 1% of the 7,000 realtors in the area- numbers done lie! As a hard working mama, I knew it was time to have her on the blog!
Hi! My name is Reena Patel and I am a licensed real estate agent here in Hampton Roads. I have two kids. My son is 8 and my daughter is 7. Because I work a lot of crazy hours I enjoy spending any time I can with my kids. I love the little things we do together like playing games, reading bedtime stories, and building forts. I love attending their school functions and plays and especially watching them play the different sports that they are involved with.

I really love being a realtor in my home town and helping my clients find "the one." For me, it is a priceless feeling making someone's dream come true by helping them find a house that will be home to their family. I make it my personal responsibility to do exactly that for each of my clients.
I got into real estate for the flexibility of scheduling and not having to work a typical 9-5 job. It's great because it allows me to spend more time with my kids. Balancing work and life is not an easy feat. Over the years with experience I have definitely learned how to better maintain it, however the best tool that I use is my calendar. I put everything on it. If it's not on it, it ain't happenin'.

If you're ever looking to buy or sell a home, feel free to call or text me anytime! My number is 512-743-1766!

Kornblau Field at S.B. Ballard Stadium New Rules

Wow, wow, wow, wow! ODU has totally upped their game. Last night was the first game of the 2019 home season, and it was a totally different experience. A $71 million dollar renovation will do that. In previous years, I've always had a baby on my lap. It was uncomfortable sitting in bleachers with zero leg room. But now there are backs on the seats and more space, which makes a world of difference. They also redid the bathrooms and added family changing rooms. Be aware - new this year is their clear bag policy which makes you unable to bring in a diaper bag. You CAN carry in a bottle of water as long as it is unopened. Bring one, because water, soda, and popcorn are all $5.00 each. Strollers are still allowed, but they need to be checked.
My aunt bought us cheap ones at Walmart so we had them ahead of time and stuffed our stuff into them, but imagine not knowing and trying to carry diapers, wipes, bottles, pacis, the works. (At previous events where we needed a clear bag and didn't have one we just used a ziplock, which works too!) Also be forewarned, there are no bathrooms on the second level. I had Ronnie in the wrap and was holding RT's hand. He had to potty and I told him we would go when we got upstairs... walked up, and the signs all pointed down. Great. No worries, now we know. Big Blue's Kids Club is back this year also.