Thursday, December 31, 2009

Visit with Grampa Tony

notice our Christmas card there on Tony's shirt :'o)

sometimes I look at Tony and all I can see is Anthony.

Happy New Year!!!

Happy New Year!!!

My New Year's Eve plan is to go to bed. Sad, I know. Butttt, that's me!!

I am looking forward to the new year. Greatly.

The last couple months have been full of unexpected, deep, and painful emotions, but I feel like I'm coming out of it, and it feels good.

It feels good to have given myself a chance to grieve a little bit. It's not something I have done enough. And, I buried it for so long that it happened all on it's own, without my permission. But I'm glad, because I feel better now.

Sometimes it's easier to bury it, push it to the back of my mind, and keep myself disctracted. God knows it's easy for me to be disctracted!! But it's not always the best thing.

I miss Anthony. It really effing sucks, what happened both to him and to our family. It really effing sucks what happened to me, what I lost.

To just admit that, openly... to feel it... it's helped tremendously.

It's been almost 2 years.

Holy shit, it's been almost 2 years.


2008 sucked big time, it was the worst time of my life and I hope I never have to go through something so incredibly painful and heart breaking, ever again.

2009 was a year of discovery for me. To learn how to be just Bonnie, the Mama. It takes a lot out of a person, to go from being one of a couple to being alone. I went through a million emotions this year, from feeling like I was mostly ok to feeling like I just couldn't keep living because I felt so lost. It's been a real rollercoaster.

2010 will be the year I begin to feel comfortable being Bonnie, one person, the single Mama. It will be the year...

Happy New Year :o)

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Day #2

Charlize spent all day in panties today and had *no* accidents!!! I am soooo excited and proud!!! She pooped in a potty a few times, peed in the potty all day. We're on our way!!!

Liliya is starting to be bothered by dirty diapers, she takes her own diaper off as soon as she poops, before I even smell anything, so I'm thinking she may potty train earlier than the rest of the kids did/are!! I'm hoping anyway!! She still doesn't realize that she has to go before it happens, and seems surprised when it does happen, so we're a ways off, but this is the beginning :o)

Toys and SAHM'ing

As I'm sure you can tell from the pictures, the kids got a lot for Christmas!! Between my mom and I, my dad and stepmom, and my dad's side of the family, they're floating in toys!!! Good toys!

The MegaBlocks, Barbies, baby dolls and accessories, the Lincoln Logs, the preschool games, the Leapster games, interactive educational toys, the arts and crafts, play-doh, the dress up clothes... these are the kind of toys I want the kids to play with!!!

The best part of it all is that our TV has been off wayyyyy more than it has been on, which is a miracle in this house!!

Rayce especially is a TV addict. The TV is generally on for most of the day, with kids floating in and out to watch a few minutes at a time.

The last several days, it has been off a LOT, and I am soooo excited about that!!

The kids are keeping themselves busy and entertained!

The new toys are keeping them challenged, stimulated, and busy in creative ways!

Gator Golf and Don't Break the Ice are our new favorite games :o)  We still have a pile of games that haven't even been opened yet!! Memory, Candy Land, Twister, Chutes and Ladders...

Our baby dolls now have diaper bags, front carriers, spoons and bowls and bottles to go with them.

The kids have dress up clothes that they wear more than their actual clothes.

Liliya twirls around the house saying "Me a rina!" (ballerina!).

When Charlize is dressed up, I have to call her Princess Charlize to get her to use the toilet :o)  
(speaking of toileting, Charlize is doing wonderfully so far today!!)

We have enough MegaBlocks for everyone to build a super tall tower of their own, all at the same time!!!

Thank you to everyone who helped us have a great Christmas :o)

Today we broke out the Hooked on Phonics I bought on sale at Boscovs (for only $20!!!), I put the flash cards on the rings and worked with Charlize on A, B, and C, and with Rayce on compound beginning and ending sounds (he read all 14 kindergarten books without so much as the slightest hesitation, so we dove straight into 1st grade!!).

Who knew a barrel of monkeys could be more than just a linking game?? Today Charlize and I used them to count and pattern :o)

I've been picking up as we go along. I still have massive amounts of laundry to work on. But I spent the entire morning spending real quality time with the kids, and today, I am loving being a stay at home Mama :o)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Charlize wore panties alllll day and only had one accident all day :o)

There is no doubt in my mind that had I been more consistent, she could have been potty trained over the summer. But that girl poops literally 4-6 times a day and she would just poop right in her underwear and walk around in it!! The 3rd time I had to scrape poop out of underwear in one day, I was just done and over it and put her right back in a diaper. It's frustrating, to say the least!!

I have been telling myself that I was going to buckle down and get with the program when Rayce went back to school in January. But today, I decided, why wait?? We're home practically all the time, there is no excuse to not start now.

She's 3 1/2 years old. So we started today. And she did very well :o)   I made her sit on the potty every half hour, even when she said she didn't have to go. Tomorrow we'll do every half hour as well. Then for a couple days we'll do every 45 minutes. Then we'll bump it up to an hour. And hopefully within a couple weeks I won't have to remind her often and she'll realize she has to go and she'll make it to the potty in time. I'm hopefull. We've gotta stick with it. She's got to potty train. I've got to potty train her. We've gotta do this. It's wayyyy past time!!


In other news, January 4th starts our preschool at home regime. Several days a week for an hour or two, I'm going to sit with the kids at the table and we're going to learn. I had started making out lesson plans and going way overboard, and today I realized that is not going to work. Not for us.

I bought Hooked On Phonics a few weeks ago, for 4-7 year olds. I looked through the kindergarten box tonight, and it looks like an amazing program.

Before we can use that though, the kids have to learn their letters!! So for right now, we're gonna focus on learning to recognize and write letters, a little bit of letter sounds, and some simple math concepts like patterns, shapes, colors, and counting.

We'll throw in arts and crafts to go along with it. We got lots of art supplies for Christmas!!


Not much else new going on. Nuff for now, the kids are asleep and I'm on my way too :o)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas :o)

Merry Christmas to everyone :o)

We had a wonderful, amazing Christmas. I got all the things I love... a memory foam mattress topper, for my love of sleep, a new lens for my camera and a huge collage picture from for my love of photography, and the most amazing wooden dragonfly puzzle treasure box for my love of dragonflies and anything that reminds me of Anthony. Most important of all, the kids got to spend Christmas Eve and Christmas morning together, which has always been sooooo important to me :o)

The kids got tons of stuff. Rayce got firetrucks, an 'alive' white tiger cub, a toy laptop, one of those zero gravity cars that chases a laser across the wall... Holden got Tranformers, Power Rangers, a motorcycle toy, die cast cars... Charlize and Liliya got baby dolls, Barbie dolls, and accessories galore... Dante got a shake-n-go race track, trucks, a Bat Cave... they all got socks up the wah-zoo (a very good thing!!!), Leapster games, some preschool games, arts and crafts supplies...

The house is a mess!!!

And we have some very happy and still very excited kiddos :o)

The girls and I are still sick. My cough just won't go away, my ears ache... the girls are sooo snotty, and Liliya and my nephew Jon were both running fevers this morning.

But that didn't dampen our Christmas fun!

Tomorrow, if all goes well, we'll be driving up to Schenectady to Aunt Connie's for Christmas with my dad's side of the family. The weather is looking very iffy, so we'll have to see what actually happens, but we're looking forward to going!!!

Anyway, enough for now... enjoy a few pics!!!

Merry Christmas!!!


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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

there is nothing more beautiful than your own sleeping child :'o)

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Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Love

I <3 Christmas.

I can't wait.

The kids are going to be so excited to come downstairs and see the gifts.

I'm dying for an awesome Christmas picture. I don't know if I can make it happen. It gets more and more difficult to get everyone to cooperate and look and smile at the same time. Not to mention the lack of natural light, inside, this time of year. But I'm gonna try like hell :o)

Since there are considerably less gifts this year, I want the kids to take a little more time to open them. I don't know if it will work, but I'd like to pass out one gift at a time, have whoever it is open it so we can all see, then go on to the next person. But they're little, so although I'm going to *try*..... ya know.

It would be so nice to get some good shots of each kid opening a gift. You know... the surprised happy excited O face :o)


I'm going to spend the day tomorrow organizing the downstairs and catching back up on the laundry. I have my nephews on Wednesday and we won't be home for most of Thursday, and I'd like it to be clean for Friday. LOL.

Christmas Eve I'll pick the boys up and we'll go to my dad's for lunch and gifts. We'll make our gingerbread house when we come home that night. The kids will get a bath and once they're tucked into bed, Mom and I will bring the presents upstairs and put them under the tree. I'll clean up, snap some pictures of the gifts and tree, and go to bed as early as I can. The wrapping is done, so we won't be up late finishing up like we usually are!

Christmas morning I'll *try* to get the kids dressed in their outfits with hair fixed before they come downstairs. It probably won't happen :o)   The kids will open presents, my sister and her family will come over, we'll all have a big breakfast, and then I'll take the boys back to their mom. At some point in the early afternoon we'll have a big Christmas dinner... ham, of course. With mashed potatoes, stuffing, corn and yummyness.

The day after Christmas, we're going up to my Aunt Connie's house to spend the day with Dad's side of the family. She lives 2 1/2 hours away, so it'll be a little bit of work, but more than worth it.

I'm going to try to make it up to Syracuse again the following weekend, to see Anthony's family again, especially since we missed his dad this past weekend.


I wish everyone lived closer. We miss you all and it stinks that traveling is so much work, especially with children, not to mention the ridiculous price of gas.


I just finished fixing up the tree a bit. The kids can *not* keep their little hands off of it.

Right now, it's fixed up and lit.

I love the grow of the Christmas tree, it makes my heart smile :o)

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Winter Solstice, whatever makes your heart happy this time of year!!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Twas the weekend before Christmas

And all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a....

Oh wait. Everyone is, in fact, still stirring!!

We made the hour and a half long drive to Syracuse today to see Anthony's grandma and cousins. His father lost his phone a few weeks ago, so I had no way of getting ahold of him :o(

It's always a long drive, but well worth it :o)

I love Anthony's family. They are just wonderful.

We made it up right around lunch time and just hung out all afternoon. The kids played, we chatted, ordered a pizza, passed around some pictures, and had a good time.

I wish we could make it up there more often. Ideally, once every month or two. But it's so much work dragging 5 kids that far. It's so much money I really don't have to fill the gas tank only to use at least half of it that same day , and to buy one or even two meals out for 6 people.

It was a rough evening. The kids missed their naps this afternoon, so they napped from 5-6 in the car on the way home. Which wasn't long enough. So when we pulled in to the driveway, 3 of them started crying. Mom had fixed some dinner shortly before we got home. None of them would eat. Charlize sat in the foyer and screamed for a good half hour. Dante cried and whined for over an hour. Holden stood in the living room and peed in his pants without a second thought. All of them are sick with colds, snotty noses and coughs.

I was glad for bedtime.

But they're still up.

At least they're not crying, I guess.


My Christmas shopping is done. I managed to get each of the kids 3 presents and a few stocking stuffers (coloring books and play-doh, jewelry for the girls, small action figures for Holden and Dante, and a card game for Rayce), and my mom bought them several group gifts. I got Holden and Dante like 6 or 7 packages of socks for at their moms, Holden a few packs of new undies, and their little sister Marley a couple packages of socks also.

We're going to wrap tomorrow at nap time.

We've got a gingerbread house to put together, cookies to bake, and 'white trash' to make tomorrow as well.

And of course I've gotta clean and do laundry. That part never ends.


I'm feeling so much better the last few days. I had a really rough week or two recently.

It's still so up and down. Definitely more ups than downs as time goes on, but this most recent down period was soooo down. I've started having nightmares and flashbacks again, which hasn't happened in months and months.

I just miss him so much :o(

So unbelievably much.

I still can't believe that he died. How does that happen?

I used to sit on his lap when he sat at the computer. I would wrap my arms around him, nuzzle my face into his neck, close my eyes, and just breathe him in, sighing deeply because I loved him soooooo much.

I stayed through all the crap because I could NOT stand the thought of living my life without him there with me every day.

And here I am anyway. Without him.

Without the love of my life.

I feel like I can never love again. I know that probably sounds so incredibly cliche. But it's true. How can you ever love someone that much again, after losing someone that you loved with everything inside of you, everything that you had, with every corner of your heart?

I miss him. And it hurts. It hurts.

And I know that I will be ok. I know that the kids will be ok. I know that we are ok.

But it still hurts.

And not a moment goes by that I don't ache to breathe him in and feel him in my arms.

My heart will always ache for him.

Anthony, I miss you, soooooo soooooooo sooooooooo much, and I still love you. I love you more. I love you most. Now, forever, always...

Friday, December 18, 2009

dinorayce :o)

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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

to get liliya to say

to get liliya to say 'U', i have to tell her to say 'me'. to get her to say 'W'.... 'double me'


I got some great pictures of Holden and Dante's little sister Marley yesterday!! Isn't she stinking adorable?! Enjoy!


I'm always trying to figure out how to make this house function a little better.

Pauline is getting some kids bedroom furniture from Ikea, and I'm looking at their site and thinking we may have to make a trip to Ikea at tax time for that purpose.

I hate Holden and Dante not having enough space here. They're only here twice a week, normally I have them Tuesdays and then Friday-Saturday. But I want them to feel like this is their home, too, not that we have to make room for them every time they come for the weekend. And right now, Dante is sleeping in the girls room because there just isn't enough room in the boys room. I constantly think about switching the boys and girls rooms. But then I think, Charlize and Liliya are here all the time, so to put them in a smaller space for 24/7 wouldn't be fair, since most of the week, it's just Rayce in the smaller bedroom.

I need smaller dressers for the kids, 3 in the boys room and 2 (even 3) in the girls room. We have huge dressers that take up too much space. I also would really like a set of bunk beds in each room.

And I found some really nice looking stuff from Ikea that is really inexpensive and fits the bill perfectly.

For the girls room.... these small dressers. I also need to find a nice bunk bed set, preferably high enough that I could also fit a trundle underneath.

For the boys room...

The boys already have a set of bunk beds that is working out nicely. It's older, and used, but it's sturdy. It's an oak-type finish, so these dressers would go nicely. I need to find a trundle to go under their bunkbeds, or work something else out for a 3rd bed.

I'm thinking about the above dresser for the girls room, also... it would have to be painted to match a little better, but it's a little bigger and has more drawers, so I feel it would probably function better than the 3 drawer dresser. Hmmmmm.

It's so challenging trying to fit 2 or 3 kids and all their stuff into a tiny bedroom!!!

i had rayce get up

i had rayce get up and pee when i came to bed. i didnt put a diaper on him. and he woke up dry!!!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

my baby is doing addition :'o)

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Saturday, December 12, 2009

just got back from lights in the park. dropped the boys off on the way. kiddos w grampa and mima. things have calmed down considerably. thank God!!

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Christmas Treeeeees <3

Aunt Lori started sending Linda and I each a Christmas ornament every year, from our very first Christmases on. It's the only real tradition that has stuck. Now that we're grown and have kids of our own, she sends the kids an ornament every year. I look sooo forward to them, and this year was no exception. The kids were so proud and excited to each hang their own special ornaments on the tree :o)

Thank you so much Aunt Lori!!! The things you do for us, from the big things to the small things... there is just no way, no words we could use, to ever thank you enough :'o)

Friday, December 11, 2009


TWO weeks till Christmas!!!

I'm hoping to finish up my shopping tonight. Hoping, being the key word.

This year is a little rough. Last year we had lots of help, lots of distraction, and the kids got *lots* of stuff. This year, all I can swing is 3 presents each. But they'll be getting presents from Grampa and Mima and the great aunts and uncles too. So it's gotta be good enough. Nothing else I can do!

I am sooooo excited for Christmas. I just love it. I love Thanksgiving, and I love Christmas.

It's gonna be a busy weekend. Christmas Eve we're going to my dad and stepmom's. Christmas morning we'll all be here at Mom's. I'll take the boys home after presents and breakfast. Then the following day we're going up to Albany (ish) for Christmas with my dad's side of the family.

I haven't decided if I'm going to take Holden and Dante with me to Albany. I'd like to, no doubt. But I'd also like to take Jonathan and Jeremiah, since my sister doesn't go to these things, because it's been a LONG time since anyone saw Jonny and they have never even met Jeremiah. So I'm debating what to do.

I need to find some nice but inexpensive collage photo frames. I would really like to get one for each of my aunts and uncles, filled with a picture each of all the kids.

I've got a party (kind of) to go to on Sunday. Mom's staying home with the kids. I'm excited for a little adult time!

Anyway, nuff for now.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

21 months ago

Twenty-one months ago, I came in from a long day of birthday shopping with Mom.

I had gotten a haircut and some new bras. I had picked out a few small things for Anthony.

Mom and I ordered Anthony's birthday present online. An IPod engraved with Anthony's 'business signature'.

We ordered a pizza for dinner.

Anthony gave the kids a bath and put them in bed, then ran out to Barnes and Noble to look for the newest Kaki King CD.

He came back empty handed. The new CD wasn't coming out until a few days later.

We watched a movie on TV.

Twenty-one months ago, almost to the minute, I handed him a very awake 8 week old Liliya, kissed him goodnight, and went to bed.

It was the last night I would ever feel him get into bed next to me, kiss me on the cheek, thinking I was asleep, and press his back up against mine.

21 months ago, at 630

21 months ago, at 630 tomorrow morning, my world changed forever.

21 months ago. exactly. anthony

21 months ago. exactly. anthony puts the kids in bed and runs to barnes & noble to look for new kaki cd


I go through stages.

Of missing him.

Sometimes I'm good, I don't think about anything too much, and I'm reasonably content with life.

Sometimes it hits me all over again and it's really bad. And the last few days... have been rough.

I just miss him. So much. I can't even begin to explain it. Sometimes it's just unbearable.

With Rayce's parent teacher conference yesterday....
then the kids tipped over our junk stand, where a lot of pictures had been stuffed. Pictures of Anthony. Pictures of Anthony's from before we met. Balloons. Cards to and from him. Letters back and forth.

It's rough :'o(

I miss my husband. I still have a hard time believing he actually DIED. How does that happen? He was fine. He was perfectly fine the NIGHT before. We had pizza for dinner. We watched a movie. I handed him the baby and kissed him goodnight and went to bed.

How do you go from THAT to literally just keeling over? Seriously?!

I just don't understand.

I'll never understand.

Monday, December 7, 2009

anthony got this for me on our first valentines day together. took the bus to binghamton at 11 at night with a HUGE bouquet of huge balloons. i saved this one <3

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Parent Teacher Conference

Just got back from my parent-teacher conference with Ms Bender, Rayce's kindergarten teacher.

I am one BEAMING PROUD Mama!!!

He's in the top of his class.

In the highest reading group. On the verge of benchmark level 3, which Ms Bender said is where they hope the kids will be reading at the end of the year.

She's trying to weasle him into a 1st grade math class a few times a week, because he's ready.

Ms Bender says one of Rayce's little classmates has a bit of a crush on him. The same little girl, incidentally, that Rayce talks about alllll the time. Her name is practically the only name I hear when Rayce talks about school.

Rayce's teacher told me repeatedly that he is her sunshine, that he just makes everyone happy, he's so easy to handle, learns things so quickly and easily, and just a true pleasure.

So now, the challenge is to, well, keep him challenged, and make sure he doesn't get bored. The separated reading groups are helping with that, as will the extra math.

I am sooooo unbelievably proud. I wish Anthony could be here to be proud with me. He would be soooo proud.

Our little boy. Our baby.

Growing up so fast. And so well.



We're sick. Blahhhhhh. Beginning of winter colds. To be expected, when the weather finally cools off. But it still stinks :o(

It's hard being a Mama when you're sick. Especially when the kids are sick (and miserable) too.

I got some Christmas shopping done last night. Most of it. I still have to pick up a few things for the little cousins, a few more things for my kiddos, and something for the parents. But it feels good to have finally started.

I still haven't uploaded pics of our Rochester trip, I know. They *are* uploaded to my FaceBook page. I just haven't had enough time to upload them to Photobucket to add to the blog yet. Sometime soon. Maybe. I hope.

For now, I have a nephew that needs a bottle, and the sudafed is calling to me...


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Sunday, December 6, 2009

A better Mama

I've been working hard at being more conscious of myself as a Mama, and it's working very well.

I've been practicing patience. Not always an easy thing to do, to say the least, but it's making a difference.

I've been more consistent with discipline, and things are, for the most part, going a lot more smoothly around here.

I've been spending a lot more *quality* time with the kids. Doing more things *with* them. Talking *to* them more often.

And I'm very, very happy with the path all of this is taking :o)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

<3 Decemmmmmber <3

We went to the PAL center today for their Christmas Party and Santa pictures. A good time was had by all. Our first Christmas-y feeling activities this year. We ate pizza and donuts and drank punch. The kids smiled for their pictures with Santa (except Liliya, whose mouth was wide open for the entire 2 minutes she sat on Santa's lap), and no one cried. And then it snowed :o)








Charlize and her BFF Jada :o)