July 5th jotting

I didn’t write the last two days. I forgot on the 3rd because my children were being holy terrors after spending the day with their grandparents (which is to be expected but still exhausting), and we were literally busy all day with the 4th. Ok, I had about 2 hours to write while everyone else napped, but I updated my 33 apps that needed updating instead and then this happened:

So sorry, not sorry. 

Anyways, I reexamined my list I picked of writing prompts, and I decided they kinda suck. So I’m back to winging it. 

So here we are. July 5th. And I’m so exhausted from our day yesterday. We were up and running from 10am til 10pm. The girls were cranky tonight. I’ve been cranky all day. I got sunburnt on my legs at the parade and have to take ibuprofen to be able to bend my knees without pain. 

So, the writing for the 5th isn’t really inspiring tonight. All I can think is:

1) Ow pain on knees. Red. Burning. Hot. 

2) Our house is under attack by cluster flies. Josh sprayed all our windows with some sort of bug death spray and hopefully they’ll all die. We’re perplexed to what drew them into the house. They weren’t here when we left for work, and we came home to them all over the outside of our windows. It wasn’t the trash can or anything because they aren’t drawn to food like other flies. So we’re stumped. Hopefully, they all die. That’s not very nice to say, but they’re creepy and freak out the girls and drive the cats crazy. 

3) Yah! Tomorrow is already Thursday. 

4) Boo. Tomorrow is only Thursday. 

5) It’s my grandpa’s 88th brithday. It’s amazing that he’s made it this far considering I don’t think I’ve ever seen him without a cigarette in his hand. Longevity runs deep in the Fulmer blood. 

6) I love my bed and my pillow and I’m going to curl up with my stinky dog and go to sleep. 
Night. 

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Jotting In July Day 2

Day 2 – where I’d like to be in 10 years

Ok, 2027 – 

I’ll be getting ready to turn 40. 

I’ll have a 12 years old and an almost 15 year old. 

I’ll be on year 11 working with city.

Going on anniversary 21 of dating and 16 of marriage. 

All of that feels really overwhelming and almost impossible, but I’m sure once I’m there it’ll feel like it happened in a blink of an eye. 

Where I want to be is pretty simple. 

A house completely our own. 

A few promotions in at work. 

Some financial stability. 

Finally lost my baby weight. (After 12 years, could I even consider it baby weight?)

That’s it. 

I mean if I’m making a dream list I’d add that I had more traveling under my belt. I went on a cruise and visited another country. I had a new car and another dog. In a dream world, Maisy will still be here. Old and cranky but still my sweet puppy dog. 

Mostly, I just want to be happy. Are my kids happy? Is Josh happy? Am I happy? Yes to all three – then that’s all that matters. Now. Tomorrow. 10 years from now. 

Jotting in July

So I’ve decided to challenge myself to write every day this month. I was just going to fly off the cuff and see where my writing takes me. Then I decided to look at Instagram for some prompt ideas and found a 30 day challenge and I was like “why not?” I’m aware that July has 31 days, but that 31st can be for something fun. 

Ok, Day 1 – Current relationship

Well, this one is pretty simple – Joshua. We’ve been married for 6 years (six?!!?) and we’ll have been together for 11 years in November. I realized the other day that it won’t be much longer till we’ve been together long let that I was alive without him which is honestly mind boggling. We’ve had so so many up and downs. We’ve grown and changed as time has gone on, but we work through things and it makes us stronger. He drives me crazy and makes me so mad, but I feel so lucky to have him. He handles my quirks and my OCD (as well as another person can). He talks me down when I start planning too big, but he lets me dream and soar. He’s my biggest fan and my #1 supporter. I don’t know what I’d do without him. I’m the luckiest girl even if he is a jerk sometimes. 

He’s not at all what I expected to end up with but that’s how love works. We’re proof that opposites attract. He’s got a big expressive personality. I prefer to hide in the shadows. He a big, joke making goofball. I’m generally pretty quiet. He loves scary movies and loud angry music. I love chick flicks and happy pop music. He’s a homebody who could sit in the house for days and be happy. I like to constantly have something to do. He’s laid back. I’m high strong. He goes with the flow, and I like lists and agendas. He forgets everything. I remember everything. We’re still learning to adjust to these things. The one thing we both have in common is that we’re stubborn so trying to live with someone so different is hard when neither of you want to budge on your stance. But today we cleaned and reorganized our bedroom and we didn’t fight at all! That’s the first time ever I think. We both strive every day to be the best parents and people we can and we love and respect each other. That’s really all I can ask for from him.

Oh and he bought me a puppy. That’s something every guy should do for his girl. He’s still living off those brownie points. 

Let us raise a glass of butterbeer

“He couldn’t know that at this very moment, people meeting in secret all over the country were holding up their glasses and saying in hushed voices: ‘To Harry Potter — the boy who lived!'”

There are moments that become emblazoned into your memory. It’s like you can clearly see what happened even years later. I was in my 8th grade English teachers classroom. She had two bookcase with books on both sides. I had gone up to get a book. On the second from the top shelf, right in the middle, was a thick green paperback book. I clearly remember it because it became a huge part of my life after that. 

Harry Potter entered my life in the 8th grade, and the whole universe never really left. I made the weird mistake of starting with book 4. Weird because books 1 and 2 were actually sitting at my house long forgotten. A gift from a family friend that neither my sister or I had wanted to touch. But it didn’t matter. I started reading and was a little confused, but I was hooked. 

I spent so much time exploring the halls of Hogwarts and avoiding trouble with the trio. I knew every teacher and what class they taught. I could tell you what spells did what and how to correctly pronounce them. I laughed at the twins antics. I cried when my friends died. I cringed in embarrassment when Luna did something painfully awkward and later marveled at her ability to be oblivious to it. I sympathized with Hermione and eye rolled along with her as she dealt with the problems of two teenage boys. 

I stood in line to get my book at midnight. I attended midnight movies showings. I stayed up and read the 6th book in just about 15 hours. I’ve read and written fanficition. I love been sorted on Pottermore. I tattooed the star emblem on my shoulder. 

As a young girl, I found Hermione to be a know it all, and I fought the inclination that I was anything like her. However, as I’ve grown, I’ve realized that I am in fact a Hermione, and I have embraced all that that means. There’s nothing wrong with being a super smart girl who kicks ass and takes names and isn’t afraid to voice her opinions and fight for what’s right. She fought discrimination because of her bloodline. She stood up for the weak and helped give a voice to those who didn’t know they needed one (and don’t you dare call it “spew”). She loved her friends more than anything and put herself in harms way just as much as the boys did and provided the solutions to many of their predicaments. 

I’ve also come to realize, that I want to grow up to be Minerva McGonagall. Yet another strong powerful woman who doesn’t allow anyone to make her feel like less just because she is a woman. Once I learned her heartbreaking back story, I fell even more in love with her. She picked her future and herself over love which couldn’t have been easy. She refused to hide who she was and did what was best for her even if it meant sacrificing some of her own happiness. She’s positively purrfect. 

These two characters were two of the first strong females I was introduced to in pop culture. I didn’t realize it til later on just how much they shaped me – how so many of the characters shaped me. 

Harry Potter teaches you to be kind, accepting, open to others, understanding, patient, and that love is the most important thing there is. Without each other we are nothing. The story speaks to much in today’s world – a world divided based on backgrounds that don’t really matter, inequality between different groups, a group of men trying to control everyone and everything. No wonder JK Rowling is so outspoken on twitter against American politics – we’re living her world in the worst possible ways. 

For me, it’s been 17 years since I discovered Harry. It’s crazy to think that anything in the world of fast changing trends and pop culture could stick around for that long. I’m so thankful I picked up that book. These books helped me in times when I didn’t even realize that the pages of a book were pulling me through. It’s been 20 years since the doors to Hogwarts were opened to the world. It’s mind boggling that a seemingly ordinary boy who lived in the cupboard under the stairs would influence so many lives. Thank you, Harry. Thank you for taking us all along through a world of magic and excitement. And thank you, Queen Rowling, for sharing your simple story turned into epic tale with us. The world is forever in your debt. 

Ten Years 💔

Every year, when this day rolls around, it’s always a rough day. Luckily, I was pretty busy today. With all the errands I ran, it kept things off my mind. Doesn’t mean I didn’t think about it. Just managed not to dwell on it. 

When you’re broken, time takes over and eventually you start to heal to the point that you feel like you’re almost whole again. As whole as you can be anyways. And then a certain day comes around, and you crack. You don’t fall completely to pieces because you’ve healed some and overtime you crack less and less, but still those things happen and they cause you to crack and you feel it deep and fresh and it’s paralyzing for a moment. 

10 years.

It doesn’t seem real. Or possible.   

I cannot wrap my mind around that number. 

10 whole years.

It’s not fair. It’s simply just not fair. 

And I’m broken again. 

April isn’t as bad. Memories of birthdays are the easiest to make it through in my opinion. They’re happy days. Days to celebrate because it’s the day this wonderful person came into existence. But death dates, those cut deep. Nothing but sorrow and pain to associated with the day. 

I remember it and can relive the pain so easily yet the details slip away. It was early. My parents were in Florida. I was laying in bed and all my mom said was “She’s gone.” The rest of the conversation is lost to time. I’m sure it had to do with my sister. I’m still mad at her about that day. I think it’s easier to hold on to that because it helps, in a sense, take away from the blunt force pain of the rest. I cried, and I went back to sleep. 

I can’t even put into words still, 10 years later, what this feeling inside is when I think about it. It’s like a white hot, slashing knife through my heart and soul, but that isn’t even enough. It’s just there. It’ll never leave. 

I only got 19 years of her life and I don’t even remember the first 5 years I had. For 69 years, she lived without me. And, for 10 years, I’ve lived without her. It’s not fair. She lived almost her whole life without me. I was just a small piece at the end. And she was just a small piece at my beginning. It’s heartbreaking within itself how little our lives overlapped. Time is very cruel in the grandparent aspect. I got a lot longer than some people. Some people never even get to meet their grandparents. But I want more. 

I miss you, Grandma. I wish you could see my girls and love on them. I wish they had more of you than me trying to pull and share memories. I held my Matilda on my lap this morning and showed her your picture. I told her you were my grandma. That’s all I got in before she wiggled off my lap to go see what her sister was doing. 

I can’t remember the sound your voice anymore. I can’t remember the touch of your hand. I can’t remember the feel of your hug. I know how special they were to me, and I cling to the ghost of them I keep in my memories. It’s hard in a world where everything is documented and saved to not have videos and photos of you. You were gone before smartphones. I have to hold you in my heart and love you and miss you from there. 

10 years. It’s just inconceivable. It’s incomprehensible. It’s simple just not fair. 

It’s summer! ☀️

Yesterday was the official start to summer even though it’s been incredible hot already. I don’t like summer because it’s usually unbearably hot, and we’re living without air conditioning this year. So it’s not been welcomed. 

However – warm weather does mean lots of this happening:

We haven’t taken them to the water playground yet, and I’m not sure how Mattie’s gonna like it because she’s terrified of the shower. So we’ll see how that goes when it happens. 

I may not be a fan of the summer heat, but I do love the exciting things that happen in the summer. We have a ton of birthdays in July (including a big 5th birthday 😱), the 4th, summer ballet classes, and, this year, lots of school prep. I have a feeling it’s going to fly by. 

The last two weekends of spring have been quite busy. Our weeks always slow down because, well, there’s only so much you can do it in the 2 hours we get at home before bedtime for the girls. But weekends are jam-packed. 

We had the Biggs-Rolfes Family reunion on 6/11. It was the 60th annual and also the last. It’s been a summer staple growing up and we’ve continued to go almost every year since I moved out. I like going and seeing all my mom’s cousins and my grandma’s siblings all coming together. I never remember who any of them are (there’s 9 kids in my grandmas generation and the number grows like crazy from there the further down you go). So my mom tries to point out all of them. The girls played with water with Opa and we took them to the playground briefly. 


Unfortunately, Miss Matilda had a full on meltdown in the middle of everything which continued for 15 mins in the car once we scooped her up and bolted out of there which only ended when she finally passed out. Kids, man. They are a piece of work. 

We also had this happen. 😭


My baby is growing up! She loves her big girl bed though. She loves to just go in her room and sit in it. 

On the 13th, Ellabelle had her kindergarten assessment for school. They just talked to her to figure out where to place her knowledgewise in class. Oma took her and then stole her away to go to “the woods” with her and Opa. She’s been talking about going back to the woods since they took her last year. She was so excited once she figured out where they were. Opa told her they were going to the mall. She’s still mad he tricked her 😂


For us, it was a nice break from having two kids especially when the little one does exactly what the big one does. It was an extremely easy and quiet evening. Oh and getting just one kid ready to go in the morning is cake compared to two. Mattie missed her sister though. When she got up that morning, she pointed at Ellabelle’s bed and kept asking “Where Ellabelle?!” 

So, we got Ellabelle back on Thursday after work and the next night we dropped the girls off so they could both go spend the night at their cousin Alex’s house. They both adore Alex so they were so excited. We were excited for another free night with NO KIDS! 

We took the opportunity to go see Wonder Woman. It was amazing. I loved every bit of it. I’m totally a Wonder Woman fangirl now. 

Saturday, we got up and did some deep house cleaning that we aren’t able to do with the girls home – like steam vacing their bedroom. We also napped which was glorious. While we were in our way to pick up the girls, I got a call from Alex saying Ellabelle threw up all over herself in the car. Of course, she did. 🤦🏻‍♀️ Poor thing seems to get so carsick but only at random times. Not sure what the connection is that causes it. We got her cleaned up at the church parking lot they stopped in and, thankfully, most of it was on her and not the car.

I was glad to have my crazy girls home. As much as I enjoyed the break, I miss them like crazy when they’re gone. 

Father’s Day was this past weekend. I got up early with Matilda and made Josh biscuits and gravy for breakfast. The girls gave him his gifts to open and then we went to his dads for a late lunch. My dad had tickets to a reds game so we’re doing Father’s Day with him next weekend. So we had a pretty laid back and low key Father’s Day which is exactly what Josh prefers. “It’s just like any other day,” he always says. 


Poor Mattie was exhausted after the day though. After her nap, we couldn’t seem to get her to stay awake. 😂

For his gifts, We replaced the “you can’t scare me. I have two daughters shirt” that he dried and shrunk last year. He also got a lego mini figure shadow box. The cats and Maisy got him new cats for his cat collection. 


Maisy got him a Stimpy pop vinyl because she thinks he’s as stupid as Stimpy. Bellerz got him a vintage Cringer figure because Bellerz is his real life scaredy cat. Bean got him a Beerus lego mini-figure because Bean expects us to treat him like he’s a cat god. I think he was pleased with all of them. 

At school on Wednesday, it was Hawaiian day so I pulled out the old dance costumes and Ellabelle wore an old hula skirt. 


Mattie, never one to be left out, insisted on wearing the Belle dress. She refused to take it off at the babysitter’s and argued when it was time for bed. She’s so silly. 

So now we prepare to head into another weekend. We’re doing half days to take the girls to the West Chester touch a truck and hopefully it doesn’t rain the whole time like it’s forecasted it will. Sunday is Opa’s Father’s Day and then we start the work week up again. It’s not a superpacked weekend which I’m totally ok with. July is gonna be crazy busy so I’ll take a day or two of rest while I can. 

Rollercoasters and Wonder Woman 

 Ellabelle’s has been sick all this week. Poor thing just wasn’t herself when we picked her up from school on Monday. She was quiet and mopey. She said it was because she accidently closed the bathroom door on her friend’s fingers. Turns out, it wasn’t just her guilt over harming her friend. She laid on the couch as soon as we got home and didn’t get up til bedtime. The poor thing has had a fever on and off and just wants to lay around which is so unlike her. She’s even been quiet which has been a welcome change since she never shuts up! I’d rather her run her mouth and feel better though. She’s so pathetic when she’s sick, and it breaks my mama heart.

Mattie insisted on laying down too even though she’s been fine

She’s thankfully on the mend so it’s on to brighter things – June is finally here! I’m not really sure why I’m excited about it. There’s nothing really all that special in June for us. There’s no birthdays or big holidays. Father’s Day is coming up, and I love thinking of fun things for the girls to give Josh. But still. It’s a pretty low key month. Maybe that’s why I’m excited about. I mean, we’ve got something planned every single weekend, but it’s still more easy going.  

June arrived with a big ole ball of fun for us – the police family picnic. It’s at Stricker’s Grove, and there’s food and rides, and I was so excited to take the girl’s this year. Last time we went Mattie was fresh from the oven, so I was very limited in what I could ride. Plus, this time, Ellabelle was big enough to ride to kiddie rollercoaster which I was very much looking forward to.


“The Teddy Bear” was the very first thing we did. She was so excited about it going up the first big hill. She insisted that I keep my arm around her. When we went around the top bend before the big drop, she suddenly clenched onto me with a death grip. She buried her face in my side and screamed the entire time. It wasn’t really much of a rollercoaster and took about 20 seconds to do the whole thing, but it was enough. When it was over I asked her if she liked it, she told me, “Just a little. It was a little scary.”


So, we went and did some easier rides. She rode the Whip It while Mattie finished her ice cream cone, and they rode the cars and boats and carousel together. Mattie loved all of it. 


On the carousel, Ellabelle was being weird and insisted on sitting on the bench behind us that didn’t move. Then half way through the ride, she tried to get up and have me put her on a horse. She almost fell over in the process. I made her sit back down because 1. I wasn’t going to fight a giant heavy horse moving up and down to put her on it and 2. I had to keep her tiny sister on her horse. So, she was grump my and mad at me about that.

I took her on the flying elephants, and Mattie screamed the whole time because she wasn’t big enough to ride them.


I convinced Ellabelle to ride the kiddie roller coaster with me one more time before left. (I should’ve stuck Josh with both girls and gone on the big one by myself, but I didn’t think about it at the time.) She did the same thing – death grip while screaming into my side, but she was brave enough to go again, and I’m grateful to her for that.

While we rode the coaster, Josh took Mattie on the train. She loved it – except the tunnel. She was very confused by why it went dark for a bit.

Between the rides and ice cream and cotton candy – I’d say we left with some very happy girls.

XxXxX

We’ve been baking in our house since our air conditioning is broke. So we’ve been living with the windows open and fans going around the clock. The nice thing is with the windows open is that the girls can see me when I take Maisy out in the morning. So, I get little peekaboo faces. It’s so cute and such a great way to start the morning. Our mornings can be so hectic that it’s a nice little reminder of why we do so much for these little tiny people.

XxXxX

Saturday was Wonder Woman day at the comic book store, and what do we do in the Hawkins house when it’s a comic book day of celebration? We dress up.

So, Friday night, I threw together a Wonder Woman outfit for Mattie. She looked adorable, and Ellabelle looked awesome as her bestie, Batgirl.

They both got a free Wonder Woman comic, and daddy bought them each one of their own as well. I love that there’s more and more positive females in children’s culture that they can grow up with. Josh and I were talking about when we encountered our first strong feminist character as a kid and I realized I was in the 8th grade and Josh was in his teens. Things have changed so much and for the better. Between the Superhero Girls and Moana, our daily lives are filled with girls going out and kicking ass. And it’s totally awesome.

That night we went out to Josh’s sister’s house for their 15th anniversary party. We were outside for most of it, and the girls loved the family’s dogs. Jack is obsessed with bubbles and tried to attack them like crazy. The girls thought it was hilarious.

Mattie was also in love with Chewy. She basically followed him around so she could pet him. He ate it up even though he apparently doesn’t like little kids very much.

They also took full advantage of their cousin Alex’s attention. They both followed her around and demanded she play with them. There’s such a large age gap between them, but I’m so glad that Alex is willing to be very attentive and genuinely excited to spend time with them. The girls are going back to spend the night in about week and Ellabelle will not shut up about it.

XxXxX

Josh worked overtime both weekend days. It sucks because it means its two on one in the morning, and Ellabelle refuses to let anyone sleep once she’s up. I made it through though. We got a text from our friend on Sunday asking if we wanted to come over and make boats and then take them to a cement stream to race them. Of course we wanted to! All we had planned was cleaning.

So, we made our way over and built and designed boats out of foam and popsicle sticks. She’s a teacher so she’s great at coming up things like this to do. They have three boys and they had a friend over so the 6 kids had a blast racing the boats and playing in the water. Mattie had no idea what was going on, but she loves getting to play with the big kids.

Afterwards, we went back to their house and swam. Mattie is terrified of the water unless I’m holding on to her. Thankfully, they have island floaty. She spent most of the time sitting in it. Ellabelle had a blast. She loves spending time with “her boys.”

XxXxX

The rest of our week has been quiet. Literally because Ellabelle has been sick. Oh, and since we’ve discovered we get PBS Kids with our bunny ears. That keeps them both very quiet.

We’ve made it to Friday and our weekend is filled with lots of fun things. So, I’m very much looking forward to quitting time.