Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner

I just read that Patrick Swayze passed away this evening. I don't know why it is affecting me so much - usually I don't see the big deal that just because someone is a celebrity they deserve our adoration. I can't say for sure what Patrick Swayze was like in real life - but I can't remember any scandals surrounding him.

But Dirty Dancing was a movie that came out when I was in the 8th grade - and we all wanted to be Baby. I saw it with Melissa Barbier - we rolled up our jeans and we wore our Keds. We all wanted to meet the seemingly bad guy with the heart of gold. It takes me back to a time in my life where I was just about to enter high school and I was excited about all the new things to come. Patrick Swayze in this movie will always be a part of that - for reasons I am having a hard time explaining.

You can't help but watch this clip and want to stand up and dance. Even Andy loves that famous line - he's said it to the girls on many an occasion!

My prayers are with his family - rest in peace ...


Sesame Place

Mr. Andy Man took a week off in August and we did a few daycations, and I even had a whole day to myself! (Thank you my darling!)

One day we asked the grandparents to come to Sesame Place with us, and we all had a great time. It was a bit of a muggy day - and it POURED for about two hours while we were there - but as long as there was no thunder the rides stayed open. There was no thunder - and the girls had a blast in the rain. Thankfully my mom and Andy agreed to get wet with them - and I huddled under an awning with our wagon of stuff for two hours!

The GPS took us through a ridiculously long and windy route to get there - down a highway with a million and one lights. Andy's parents were coming from PA (Sesame Place is in PA) and their GPS took them into NJ first! Crazy maps. But eventually we got there safely and loaded up the wagon with food and towels and clothes and backpacks and the kitchen sink. In case we got thirsty.

Many of you may remember that Maddie does not do well in crowds. Or on hot days. Or waiting for any period of time longer than 15 seconds. So ... you know ... she did just great! (Insert sarcasm here.) The funny thing is that I KNOW she will love the rides once she gets on them and starts moving, so I push her to wait on the lines even though she drives everyone in our general vicinity nuts. "Sorry, people - we all have kids - deal." We did a few dry rides first thing - and she did smile and smile. Katie has much more patience and doesn't mind waiting, but Maddie can rile her up quick.

It was a trying morning, and I think I lost my temper more than I would have liked - but after we ate lunch we decided to just put them in their bathing suits and let them on the water rides for the rest of the day. Then it started drizzling. Just drizzling. Andy's parents decided to call it a day at this point - and I didn't blame them. Good thing, too - because after about 5 minutes after they left the rain came down! My mom was stuck with us because we were her ride - but she just got wet and was fine with it. They were all playing in Count's Splash Castle where every 10 minutes or so a huge bucket would drop hundreds of gallons of water all over everyone. We kept the girls away but Andy ran under it a few times!

I hid under said awning and chilled. It was rainy and it was hot. I stayed about 90% dry and wasn't complaining. After about an hour it started to let up and I saw that some patio tables with umbrellas were open so I rolled the wagon over there and chilled some more. Then it started pouring again! I was in a good spot and didn't get wet, but the wagon was not fairing as well.

Andy and my mom took turns bringing the girls back and forth to get a quick dry off and a drink or a snack - but those girls wanted to go right back into the water. The parade was right by where I was sitting, and because it was raining - we got front row seats. That parade BOOKED by, though. You could tell they were double timing it.

It finally stopped raining and we went to the other water rides throughout the park and the rest of the day went really smoothly. The highlight of the day was when they got to meet Zoe and the Count. Those two were the only characters we saw the whole day. When the girls saw Zoe they just ran right up to her and hugged her legs and wouldn't let go. It was adorable! Katie did the same thing to the Count, but Maddie was a little scared of him. Still adorable!

We left around 6ish - stopped at BK for food for the girls and they fell asleep the rest of the way home. I chose a different route from the GPS and we took highways the whole ride home. Better!

We bought two day tickets and have one day left to use. The water rides are all closed, but we will venture again sometime this month - we didn't do a lot of the dry rides or any of the shows. I'm glad we took them this year as opposed to last year, and I have a feeling next year will be a little better.

As long as it doesn't rain.

Here's a little slideshow of the day - enjoy!


First Day of School

We had a busy hectic week figuring out schedules and what time we all have to get up in the morning. I decided to send the girls to different schools for a variety of reasons, and they seem to have taken to it fine. Maddie goes 5 days a week and Katie goes Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are crazy.

We bought an extra carseat for Andy's car so he could drive Katie to school in the morning. Maddie takes the bus, which is just sooo much easier. But Katie's school is only like 7 minutes away so it's really not that bad.

Katie's first day was last Friday and it was a beautiful sunny day. Maddie hadn't started yet so we only had the one kid to get ready. It was nice, it was fine, it was a breeze. "We got this!" Andy and I said with a chuckle.

Katie's First Day!

Tuesday came (day after Labor Day) and it was Maddie's turn. Her bus doesn't come super early so we had time - and since it wasn't a Katie school day, again we only had one kid to get ready. "Hah!" Andy and I exclaimed with grins.

Maddie's First Day!

Then Wednesday hit. And we were promply put in our place.

We woke up them at 7am - "plenty of time!" I thought to myself. After all, we woke up at 7am on Katie's first day and it went like clockwork. But now we had two crazy little girls to get ready. Our stress level did not just double, it quadrupled. "Eat! Go potty! Come here! Stand still! I'm not brushing it too hard! Arms up! Keep your socks on! That's not yours!"

I suppose we'll laugh about this one day.

One day years from now.

Finally they were dressed and Katie was ready to leave with Andy. But since it was their first day of school together I wanted to take some pictures of them together. I was dreading it - after the morning we had I would have been happy with just one picture of them crying together. But they were great!

They posed and laughed and hugged. I wanted one picture of them hugging each other and looking at me, but they just couldn't get it, so Andy said, "C'mon" to get them to behave. They thought he meant "C'mon over here," so they started walking towards us. Literal children. (PS - I always said I wouldn't dress them alike when they started school, but since they aren't at the same school I figure it's OK!)

This morning was a double-child-school-day and I was determined not to have a repeat of Wednesday. I got them up at 6:30am - and it was much smoother. We needed that extra half-hour. Andy had to be in his office for an 8am meeting so I had to drive Katie to school, and Maddie had to come along for the ride. It's raining and I expected some craziness, but it was fine. Whew.

I'll just keep repeating to myself, "One day ... years from now ..."


Dirty Dirt Dirt

I am JUST getting calm enough to let the girls play in the dirt. It probably has something to do with the fact that they don't eat it or throw it anymore. I just make sure the clothes they have on are already stained and I let them loose. And I don't look.

It was so cool, beautiful, and breezy last night that we all went in the backyard to just chill. Even though we have a nice selection of climbing appartus-es and slides my darling daughters go straight for the back of our yard where hardly any sun gets through the trees and there are nice surfaces of brown calling to them: "Psst ... Katie ... Maddie ... c'mon over here. Those clothes need a little color on them."

And of course Mr. Andy Man cannot let fun be had without him.

"Just makin' it easier for them."

The wind was blowing the dirt away before it even made it into the bowl.

All I needed was a pitchfork and this picture would have been complete.


Stop & Shop Gift Card Winners!

We have our winners! I meant to do this yesterday but we had a last minute invite to the Renaissance Faire and were out all day. We had a great time - but that's another post!

OK, so ... I had 4 entries total that made it by the deadline of midnight on Friday. (I had more comments, but they didn't have a Stop & Shop near them - so sad ...). I numbered them in order.

1. Christine
2. Tracey
3. BoufMom9
4. Beverlee

Then, I went to Random.org and generated 2 random numbers between and including 1 and 4.

Here are the results ...

So a big congratulations go out to Christine and Beverlee! Email me at madkatblog@yahoo.com with your addresses and I will get the cards right out to you!

Enjoy your shopping!!!


Giveaway Closed!

Hi everyone - thanks to all who entered the Stop & Shop giveaway. I will be picking the names of the winners later today and let you know who won!

For those of you who don't have a S&S near you - you are missing out on some good shopping! Haha! :)

Andy and I are off to the Renaissance Fair today while his parents watch the girls. We are going with some of his friends and they aren't bringing their kids so we aren't bringing ours!

Have a great Labor Day weekend everyone!


Stop & Shop Gift Card Giveaway!

Well, this summer has been a busy one, let me tell you!

We went to lots of family parties, we went to Sesame Place for the first time (which was a good/trying experience), we went to the zoo, we went down the shore, we played and played in the kiddie pools!

I plan on posting lots of slideshows in the upcoming weeks - as well as telling you all about the Katie and Maddie's first day of school! Yikes!

In the meantime, I was contacted by MyBlogSpark on behalf of General Mills and Stop & Shop to hold an awesome giveaway for you guys! Now, just to let you know ... I shop at Stop & Shop almost daily. Seriously. There is one about 5 minutes away from me and Katie and I were there constantly while Maddie was in school. (It's amazing how much shopping can be done with only one child in tow ... I'd go straight to the bakery and get her a bagel and it was smooth sailing.). I like their prices and I like their variety. Recently I went to another store with my mom and the prices were higher than my S&S! So, I don't feel like I am just randomly pushing an advertisement on you guys.

(I also eat Cheerios like they are going out of style. When I was pregnant and teaching I carried a tiny plastic bag of them everywhere I went and just munched all day long - they kept my tummy calm.)

Also, my Stop & Shop has those automatic price scanners, which I planned on blogging about soon anyway. I grab a scanner, grab some bags, and shop. Scan my stuff - put it in my bag. Go to the register - it pulls up my order - I pay - and I'm out the door. No more unloading all my groceries just to reload them back into my cart. I turn into a German nannie and sing, "these are a few of my favorite things" as I roll out the door.

So ... Shop & Stop is having a back-to-school promotion ... here are the details ...

This Back-to-School Saving Event is taking place at Stop & Shop stores September 4-10. Great sale pricing on the participating General Mills brands: Cheerios, Lucky Charms, Reeses Puffs, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cookie Crisp Sprinkles, Cookie Crisp, Fruit Snacks, Old El Paso Dinner Kits, Pillsbury Strudel, Pillsbury Scrambles, Green Giant Boxed Vegetables, Yoplait Yo-Plus Multi-Pack, Fiber One Yogurt Multi-Pack, Pillsbury Refrigerated Cookies, Pillsbury Crescent Rolls, Pillsbury Sweet Rolls and Yoplait Delights.

Additional savings for you or your school, depending on which Stop & Shop location you shop.

If your Stop & Shop store sells gas: (mine doesn't - :(
- Buy four (4) participating General Mills items and you’ll automatically earn 100 points on your Stop & Shop card.
- For every 100 points earned, you'll save 10¢ per gallon of gas (Please note: Total discount cannot exceed price per gallon)
Just swipe your Stop & Shop Card at the pump to redeem your Gas Rewards.

For those Stop & Shop locations without gas stations, don’t worry – you’re not left out of the savings – if you buy five (5) participating General Mills products, you will receive 20 Bonus Box Tops for your school.

AND ... MyBlogSpark, Stop & Shop, and General Mills are allowing me to giveaway a $10 gift card to one lucky reader! But that's not all!

They sent me a $10 for myself, but I have decided to give that one away, too!

So that two - count 'em - TWO - $10 gift cards to Stop & Shop for TWO lucky readers!

(I feel like an infomercial - all I need now is a British accent.)

So here's how to enter ...

1. Leave a comment telling me your favorite time of day to go food shopping and why. (That's one entry.)

2. Blog about this giveaway and you'll get another entry. (Be sure to tell me if you do this.)

Comments will close at midnight on Friday, September 4th. I will choose two winners on Saturday, September 5th and post it up!

Good luck everyone!!!

(And don't worry - I'll take that June banner down soon ... hehe)