Tuesday, July 26, 2011


I always remember my mom talking about how annoying the "why" stage is. I've been so scared of this stage and now that we're all of a sudden in full swing of it, it hasn't disappointed. O.M.G. On one hand I love that I get to teach them things on a deeper level than we've discussed previously but the other hand wants to slap myself silly after constantly needing to explain things. My throat literally is sore from talking so much. "Why are we driving slow?" "Because there is traffic" "Why is there traffic" "If you can figure that out kiddo you'll be famous". Most of these conversations happen in the car so I can't remember any of the good ones.
It really amazes me how much information they are willing to soak up. And they remember EVERYTHING!
And with two of them it's totally magnified. Where Jackson may have been satisfied with an answer I give, Madison chimes in with a follow up question which sparks yet another question from Jackson. All while trying to concentrate on driving. Can you say mental exhaustion?

How long does this phase last?


Jackson currently has a few annoying behaviors. One of them is hitting Madison. He'll just haul off and whack her if she's annoying him. I just don't know how to get him to stop. Time outs don't work, swatting him doesn't work (obviously), and my normally effective discipline of going into my room doesn't work since it's not an ongoing behavior. I got a suggestion from a friend to take him to the police station and tell him that's where kids go that hit people. She said the policemen would be willing to talk to him. I actually think this would be VERY effective on him. He would be TERRIFIED, but does anyone know if the police would really do this? Or would they laugh at me?

He's getting smart now and knows how and when to lie. Once again a completely normal behavior but oh so annoying. At this point his lies are completely obvious so it's funny.

One other issue is using naughty words. All of a sudden he thinks it's hilarious to say things like "poo poos", or "shit", or "stupid". Then the most fun part of parenting comes in...disagreeing with the other parent on how to handle the situation. Dad yells and says "don't let me hear you say that again!" Super effective (rolls eyes). I go between ignoring it and offering a different word to say instead. That does work to some extent but I think it's Madison's reaction that he really gets a kick out of. She ALWAYS runs to us "Jackson said stupid"! No matter how many times I tell her to ignore him she won't listen. She's such a rat!


I wanted to talk a little about Madison and her current insanely annoying habit. It boils down to the fact that she is incredibly impatient. JUST like her father. If she calls my name and I take a breath to answer her she is already SCREAMING it a second time. Blood. Boiling. Sometimes I have to just leave the room because I'm so incredibly annoyed that I just want to scream back at her. Every single time she does it I explain to her that she needs to wait and that she can't scream my name like that. I tell her a better way to handle the situation. The worst part is when I'm talking to someone else and I don't answer her immediately. I try to actually ignore her to teach her a lesson but who wants to listen to a little girl SCREAM any longer than necessary. She totally understands the need to say "excuse me, Mommy" which she will do after she's been reminded to but she totally doesn't understand that she still needs to wait. Then a fun way to mix it up is when Jackson is also trying to get my attention at the same time. I just keep going back and forth ensuring both of them that I'm listening to each of them. These are fun times I tell ya.
Nothing new in the course of parenting and yet another thing that too shall pass but still worth mentioning.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Jackson got a job!!

When I was at Dorel with Maddie I made sure to leave Jackson's card with the art people. I'm not sure if that led to the call or not but the next week they called for Jackson. His shoot tomorrow is for a stroller.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Another job

So the day after the Hasbro shoot I got another call from our agent saying that Madison was called for another job at another company THE NEXT DAY! She said she'd never heard of a new model getting called back to back like that so I'm not holding my breath for more but it was really cool to get that second call.

This second job was for Dorel Juvenile Group for a step stool.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Maddie got the Hasbro job!!

Next Tuesday I have to take Madison to Rhode Island for her first modeling job. It's about an hour and a half away and we need to be there at 8:30am. EEK! Can you say rush hour? I'm very excited.
I haven't explained any of this to the kids. I just don't think they would understand and I know if I ever had to tell them we were going to have pictures taken they would whine and say they didn't want to go. But I also know that once they're there they'll have a fun time. I also don't want to make a big deal out of it. I just want it to be a casual thing and not stress them out about it. For instance if they went for an audition I wouldn't want them to know it was an audition. I wouldn't want them to feel badly if they didn't get it.

I forgot to mention that it's for my little pony. Not sure if it's for a box or what though.

Madison and Jackson take the stage!

The week or two leading up to their first dance recital were exhausting! They had so many rehearsals and getting the two of them into and out of their costumes every time was getting old. Plus there was an extra day of getting them dressed for their professional pictures.

The day of the dress rehearsal I snuck this picture in the dressing room. It's missing two of the girls but at least it's got my two in it! This day I actually had my mother and Chris's mother with me to dress the kids because I was in the auditorium taking professional pictures of the whole recital.

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At the dress rehearsal I saw them come out on stage and even though I'd seen the dance and heard the song a million times, I unexpectedly had tears watching them up there like such big kids doing something on their own.

In the dance Jackson is supposed to bring these three girl out, leave them, go back stage and get the other two girls (there was one girl missing for this dress rehearsal). Well, he got so excited once he was out there that I heard him yell "Hi Grandma! Hi Nana!" and he completely forgot what he was doing out there. It was so cute! (I'm working on a project using the still images I got at the dress rehearsal that's why the captions are on this one picture)
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I'm pretty darn sure Madison was telling Jackson he needed to go back and get the other girl. Look at him standing with his hands in his pockets!!!
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The final girl was finally sent out by people backstage because it was obvious Jackson had forgotten her!
Eventually they all remembered that they were there to do a dance and were all desperately looking around to see what they were supposed to be doing.
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Again with the hands in the pocket! I was laughing through the entire thing!
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So, on Friday (the day before their recital) I had to bring my car to the mechanic. He was just going to be checking it over and giving it right back that day. Of course he found some major issues with the brakes so it couldn't be driven and he couldn't fix it until Monday. Fine. Friday night I almost had a heart attack when I realized their dance costumes were LOCKED IN MY CAR! My car that I only have the one key for. I very randomly found out one day that the mechanic knew a guy who's mother my mother helps take care of. It was such a coincidental discovery and had I not learned that I wouldn't have been able to get the costumes without literally breaking into my car. I was able to call the guy (who I barely know), who was able to call my mechanic and let him know I needed my car unlocked. It all worked out in the end but I was pretty stressed for an hour or so.

So now it's Saturday. Photography and video were strictly prohibited during the recital but Chris and I both managed to sneak a video. We were in the front row and there were some stage lights that were blocking them a bit but it's better than nothing.

Nana, Grandma, Auntie Courtney and Chris all came to watch their debut. Grandpa and Papa happened to both be out of town. Uncle Mike was working and Auntie Kristen couldn't come because she would have had to pay for a ticket for Alyssa to get in too and at $18 a pop, that wasn't going to happen.

Miss Lisa had them meet backstage and rehearsed a bit before they went on. This time it went much smoother. Jackson was so aware of going back to get the other girls that he barely walked the first girls on stage before running off to get the rest.

You'll see a little bridge that Jackson and another girl make. The other girls are supposed to all pass through it but that didn't happen exactly as planned.

I don't think Maddie had a smile on her face at all through the whole thing!

When they left the stage I looked at our family and Courtney had tears streaming down her face from laughing so hard.

Oh, and Miss Lisa thought it would be a cute touch to get Jackson a flower to wear but it ended up being a bit of a distraction!

I can't believe I didn't take any pictures of them in their costumes on the actual recital day, but here is Maddie with her flowers from Nana and her friend Grace.
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Overall this was such a great experience. The kids never complained. They loved going to class all year and loved getting to wear a costume. All three of us absolutely adored Miss Lisa so as long as she's teaching the class they will be in we'll go back to the same school (if they want to do it again).

Sunday, July 03, 2011

New cousin for Madison and Jackson

I have another new nephew! He was born in May and is simply adorable! Big sister Sophie will be 2 on July 17 and is so happy to have a baby brother.

Playing around

My nephew Raffi had soccer games every saturday this spring so we went to watch him whenever we could. Although it was hard to watch him with Jackson wanting to play soccer the entire time!

He's really showing preference to playing goalie. He's actually a really good keeper. He totally knows who Matt Reis is (Revolution goalie) and wants to be just like him. Hopefully he won't ask to shave his head! This is the post from when we met him last year.

Uncle Mike goofing around

Chris playing with Alyssa

A typical, funny conversation between the three of us

This video cracks me up!

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Driving range

The kids get SOOOOO excited when we go to the driving range. It always amazes me how Jackson can have absolutely no focus whatsoever and still hit the ball so consistently. Maddie is such a girl :-)

Just a sweet picture of Maddie


Since the kids were born I've wanted to get them into modeling. I was always held back because I didn't know the proper first step to get it done legitimately. Over the years I've connected with people who happen to be in the industry and led me in the right direction. Plus my family was starting to harass me! So I finally sent an email with their pictures to the recommended agency in Boston. I got a phone call to set up an appointment for them to come in and so I could be explained the process. Without going into all the details I decided to go forward with it. They had an initial photo shoot (not with me) to get images for their comp cards and it was a good way to see how they would "perform" in a working situation.

These are a handful of the images we got. They were definitely stiff at first and I was so worried. My plan was to stay away but I could see they weren't getting any good shots so I stepped in and started making goofy faces and jumping around and "hurting" myself in order to make them laugh. It totally worked but I don't know if I'll be able to do that in an actual working environment.

The agency told me that Maddie has a leg up on any competition because of her red hair and Jackson has a leg up because he's a boy.

They were officially "on the market" at the end of May and I just got a call the other day that Maddie is a finalist for a Hasbro shoot in a couple weeks. There is no audition for this so keep your fingers crossed they pick her!


I can't believe I haven't even blogged about Easter. This is just ridiculous.

We spent most of the day at Chris's parents' house with the whole family. The kids had an easter egg hunt that I somehow missed?

Jackson with Papa...

Jackson played soccer most of the time we were there. I literally threw his pants away when we got home. There was no amount of stain stuff that would have removed the grass stains. They were hand me downs and this was his second year wearing them so it didn't kill me to throw them away.

Inside for a little hydration

And cupcakes

Maddie kept herself occupied by collecting all of the sticks in the yard and putting them in the fire pit.

Nana and Papa with all of their grandchildren although they now have a sixth who I'll introduce later.

This kid plays hard!

Alyssa decided to pet Maddie's hair. I'm sure she whined about it at first. She's such a touch-me-not!

After dinner we went to my Aunt Judy's where they got to play with my cousin's kids Ben and Jack. They totally cried when we had to leave!