Saturday, November 7, 2009

An Old Mexican Proverb

A house does not sit upon the ground,
but upon a woman.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


I am seeing red right now in my house. Our beautiful Belle with the thickest hair in the world has head lice. And I'm not talking a few nits (eggs) and we're done with it. I'm talking crawling bugs and lice (plural for louse) falling out of her hair as we are applying the "big guns" (prescription medicine) onto her head last night.

I am an insanely clean person. My friends make fun of me because I clean out the bathtub with comet every time my kids get in it. My kids take baths and wash their hair every night. My house is clean (most of the time) and now I have bugs! Turns out lice LOVE clean hair (well how was a mother to know?) And as Annie is running around the house last night, promising she'll never wash her hair again, I'm not sure if she truly understood the implications of being the greasy, stinky kid at school, especially middle school. She managed to make Belle cry because she was SO grossed out and wouldn't go anywhere near her. I hope she doesn't mind being quarantined and made fun of when she gets these things.

Nobody else has them and believe me when I say I've been obsessively checking everyone's head in our house. I'm sure we look like monkeys picking at each other. So, today I will spend the day vacuuming, packing pillows and stuffed animals into plastic bags for 2 weeks, spraying furniture with nit killer, throwing away brushes, hair bands, etc, and boiling anything that stays still long enough. Watch out, Freckles (the dog) you might be next!

I was allowed to take Belle back to school today and when I was checking her in with the nurse, 3 little girls in her class were waiting for their moms to come pick them up because they had lice. Can you say OUTBREAK? Belle can't wear her hair down anymore and don't think I won't become OCD about what comes near her head. The nurse assured Belle she wasn't the only one and it had nothing to do with cleanliness as I'm sitting there thinking what things I need to burn at home.

I now am probably the single most educated person when it comes to lice, so if anyone needs "lice advice", I'm your woman and I will eradicate these bugs from my home and child's head if it's the last thing I do. And talk about itching...we all are running around scratching our heads thinking we have little, nasty bugs crawling in our hair. I think I might have PTSD from this whole ordeal...and here's irony for you, Belle's nickname (the name I call her) is "bugface". That has taken on a whole new meaning for me now!

Wish me luck with the extermination and I'll keep y'all updated on my bug killing journey!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


My last post was about PMS, so I thought in keeping with said post, I would blog about pregnancy. I don't feel the need to include all my pregnancies because basically they are all the same...the day I miss my period, I start vomiting and do that for about 12 weeks or so. It was so bad with my first pregnancy that I would sleep in the bathroom on the floor, so I could be closer to the toilet. I definitely was NOT glowing. However, with each pregnancy the vomiting would not last as long.

Vomiting would be followed by backpain and sciatica with the 2nd pregnancy that warranted physical therapy. Bed rest soon followed, except with pregnancy #2 and all in all my pregnancy with Belle was ideal for someone like me who gained a ton of weight on bed rest. No bed rest or pre-term labor with BelleBelle. Charlie put me in bed for about 2 months only to be born almost 6 weeks early and that's a whole other blog.

I'm about to make a very controversial statement when I say I hate being pregnant. It does not treat me well and my body was not made for 18 Kids and Counting. No one wants to be as big around as they are tall...yes, that would be me. I mean look at me...I'm gigantic. It's like the movie Aliens where the baby totally takes over my entire body. I can't even see my feet and don't ask me to move anything, but a snail's pace because it's not possible. Oh, yeah did I mention nasty heartburn that caused me to sleep sitting up? Try doing that on bed rest...

So, no I did not enjoy pregnancy. Cam's dad told me one time when I was huge that I was just glowing, just beautiful and guess what I didn't believe a word he said. I love my father-in-law, but he was definitely blowing smoke that day! My wedding ring eventually didn't fit my finger (swelling), so I ran around 8 months pregnant, no wedding band with my very young, 16 year old face (not really), but I got some dirty looks for a couple months!

I LOVE my children. And for those of you who know me, I love newborns. I love nursing and believe it or not, I loved staying up with those little ones at night...well, at least with the last 2 I enjoyed those nights. Belle and I would hang out and watch decorating shows at midnight. I would probably have 6 more kids, if I didn't have to carry them...

So, the P words (PMS and pregnancy) are words that make my hubby cringe and to be truthful makes me feel a little vomit in the back of my throat. Glow away my beautifully pregnant friends and I'll just come over and love on your babies!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Perhaps a Career in Dancing?

(Make sure to turn off the sound on my playlist, so you can hear what they are dancing to)

I know this video is a little hard to make out, but that is my son and daughter dancing the night away at Uncle Art and Aunt Patty's wedding. I have no idea where either one of them gets their rhythm and moves because Cam and I do NOT move like this (especially Charlie). And they both lasted ALL night. It was hilarious and I loved watching every single second of it when I wasn't taking care of Bell (who unfortunately was super sick with the flu).

This Makes It All Worth It

My life is not glamorous and there are times I want to hang up my apron (literally) and give my two week notice. But who can retire from the full-time job of being a mom? And I know soon enough my 3 munchkins will no longer need me to tuck them in at night, or drive them to acting classes, or take them to the library, or have lunch with them at school, or help them with school projects, or cook dinner, or pack lunches, or fold laundry. So then what do I do? I am a mom. Oh sure, I do other things like substitute teach and type jobs for my mother-in-law, but I am a mom through and through. And I like what I do, but more importantly it's a calling for me. These 3 precious children have been gifted to me for a short time and I want to spend every single second doing that job the best that I can. Don't get me wrong, there are times when I want to set all 3 out on the curb and put a "FREE" sign on them, like when Charlie spits at his sister while I'm trying to grocery shop at Wal-Mart. That would be one of those times when ANYONE could have had him!

But when they get home from school, I get to kiss sweaty heads and hear all about their day. I send notes in their lunches to remind them of how much I love them and that I think of them all day long. (Well, maybe not all day!) I get to be there when they laugh and when they cry. As moms we end sleeping in toddler beds like my sister-in-law did the other night. We hold their heads as they throw up and we hold their hands as they need our support. We lend our ears, we lend our support, and sometimes we lend our punishment.

I was afraid when I was pregnant with Isabelle that I wouldn't be able to love another baby as much as I loved Annie. I was really afraid and I convinced myself I could fake it if I needed to. Being an only, I didn't realize there was more than enough love and a mother's heart expands as much as it needs to to love each child. And boy did I love that little bundle. From the moment I laid my eyes on her, I loved her as much as I had loved Annie. Like Dr. Suess says about the Grinch, my heart grew 2 sizes that day. Of course, a mom has enough love for every child because that's what we do. We love!

My husband and I just went to his brother's wedding and as we drove from the church to the reception, holding hands in a silent car (the grandparents had our kids) I could feel my heart growing. I looked at him and realized I loved him more on that day than I had almost 13 years earlier on our own wedding day. And he was actually thinking the same thing and believe it or not, he said it out loud before I did, and he had one happy wife! (By the way, the wedding is where the pictures for this blog came from).

So what am I trying to say? I am trying to say that it is worth it! All the sacrifice is totally worth it. My road has been blessed and I am proud to be called mom and wife most of the time. Sometimes when people use my name or call me "Mrs. Pico", I look around for that person. I know she's in there, but I sure do enjoy being called "mom"! (I could do without all the laundry, though)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

A Wedding Weekend for Wordless Wednesday

The Junior Bridesmaids

The Flower Girls & junior Bridesmaids

Charlie and Ella

Annie with her cousin Savy, the youngest Flower Girl

Charlie and his cousin, Wills
Can you say TROUBLE?

Belle & Wills

"Mama" Annie and her cousin, Santino

Friday, September 11, 2009

America the Beautiful

Yes, I remember clearly this day 8 years ago. We were just waking up, Cam's mom was calling on the phone to turn on our TV, "something horrible is happening" she said. I rolled my 7 month pregnant body out of bed and flipped on the TV to find a video of a plane crashing into a tower in New York. "What's happening" I said to Cam as our 3 year old walks in the living room. "It looks like a plane crash" he said. But, we would soon find out it was so much more than a plane crash and that many American lives would be taken that day. Fathers, wives, husbands, children, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, friends, mothers, grandparents were under attack. And no one could stop it. Not our military, not our president, not our country, not the republicans or the democrats. We had to sit and watch and wonder where the next one would hit. We had to sit helpless in our living rooms, in our cars, at our work, in our schools, in our homes targets to terrorists. To people who wanted us all dead. Yes, you and me and the unborn child I carried. They wanted us dead for no other reason than we were Americans. They hated us and they proved that hate on that day 8 years ago.

So, in typical American fashion this country sprang into action. There was no "wait and see". The military, fire departments, rescue personnel, doctors, nurses, political leaders, the government, our president took action to protect us, to assure us that we were safe. The rescues started and we watched people looking for family members. Firefighters pulling people from the wreckage, and people praying. I'm sure most of us at some point on September 11, 2001 dropped to our knees and prayed to our God to save us, to protect us, to guide us. These are the things that make America beautiful...the heroism, the ability to pull together as a nation under one flag for the good of the whole, the sacrifice even of life. This is what makes America beautiful that 8 years later, we have the freedom to talk bad about a president that made the best choices under so much stress and sprang into action after such a devastating tragedy. We have freedom to write, to speak, and to express ourselves.

I am proud to call myself an American and thank God that I was born on this soil and not on some foreign land where I could be beat if my ankles weren't covered up. I am proud that I live in a country where my daughters can be doctors, lawyers, teachers, anything they can imagine and do not have to fear being put to death if they decide to do so. I am proud to live in a country where I can choose my own religion and where I can worship my God openly without fear of persecution. I am proud of my father, of my cousin, of my uncles, of my friends who serve in a military that protects my freedom and the freedom and safety of those I love. So, today I say thank you to all those who make this country what it is and I pray we continue to remember and never forget!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

First Day of School

When does this happen? How do they grow up right before our very eyes? The night before school started, I think, no I know I wanted to have another baby. What? Why, you ask? Because I have no children left at home. NONE. The baby is in kindergarten, so when do I stop calling him the baby? When he's 30 and getting married? And if Annie gets married at the same age as her daddy and I, she'll be getting married in 10 years. But she's not doing that, so I don't even have to think about it!

Anyway, they were all babies like, really yesterday! And now, Annie is in middle school as the cutest 6th grader there is, Belle is a 2nd grader and her smile is still contagious (like when she was a baby). And Charlie, well, we've talked about him being in kindergarten (all day kindergarten). So, here's to all the mommy's who feel lonely right now. All of us who have sent ALL our little ones off to school and thinking for one brief moment (very brief because it's not possible) that they want to have a baby. Right about now Cam is thinking thank goodness we took care of that!

These are those same 3 sweet kids 5 years ago before Charlie's baptism and they are still blessing our lives everyday!

So, I guess you could say this is the Then to our Now.

I am so proud of all of this "Pico Power" and the craziness I like to call family.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Family Devotional

In our family we are trying to get into a very new, sometimes difficult to achieve short family devotional before we go to bed each night. Now, for all of you who know our crazy family personally you are probably wondering how this gets achieved: a lot of patience and turns out a pretty good sense of humor on the dad's part (who typically presents our "lesson"). We learned some important things the other night that I will share here: when it comes to the different age groups in our family, short really is sweet; asking really open ended questions sometimes gets you in trouble, like when the dad asked "what did we just read" and Belle answered, "Go, Dog, Go". This was a completely correct answer because right before devotional Cam finished reading that book to Charlie and Belle! What wasn't the answer the dad was looking for?

We thought a book might help guide us that had a scripture and then a passage to guide you through the scripture and it probably does help, if you're not 5 and you're not Charlie rolling around on the floor trying too figure out why Freckles the dog is always trying to get away from him (a little honesty here). This particular night, mommy does not have the spirit and would not have earned her participation points had she been in school. The dad is trying his hardest to keep everyone engaged on this lesson about how God doesn't always give us what we ask for and He meets our needs as He sees them, not our wants. Very hard lesson for even this grown-up to understand, but he asks some good questions, gets some good answers. Cam asks THE question starting with the baby "what was this lesson about? what did you learn?" Any good teacher makes sure their students know what they've just taught. So, while we wait for Charlie's answer and it must be a good one because it's taking awhile, he says "God loves you". And the Pico girls start laughing hysterically and Cam can't hold out long before he realizes that is a perfect way to wrap this night up because that had nothing to do with our lesson. Not one thing! Don't get me wrong, it's the absolute truth, but Charlie knew it was a devotional and knew he had a shot a getting this one right.

Here's my final bit of advice: if you are ever stuck for an answer in Sunday school or Bible study class, follow Charlie's lead and answer with "God loves you"!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Mothers & Sons

First of all, I know in some parenting book, somewhere, some expert has written about the negative aspects of the family bed. Second, we don't have a family bed. I love sleeping with my husband and since we moved into a two-story house, our dog who used to sleep in the family bed no longer sleeps downstairs. I'd like to think she sleeps upstairs to "protect" the kids.

With that being said, our bed has somehow (I blame it on the move) become a place Charlie thinks he can visit every night and most nights we are both too tired to drag him back upstairs and tuck him in, so we let him stay. I often love the snuggle time with him, as if we are not together enough during the day. And yes, there is the potential that he may someday be a "mama's boy" (if he's not already). And what's wrong with a "mama's boy"?

What I don't enjoy is the little arms and legs I remove from my own body throughout the night. So, we've been talking to Charlie about staying in his own bed ALL night. We've even resorted to bribery: chocolate if he stays in his bed 10 nights in a row! I know what the parenting books say about that too, but I say whatever works. The other night as I'm putting my son to bed and reminding him to stay in his bed and what a great job he's doing (3 nights in a row), he looks at me as we are hugging each other good night and says, "Mama, do you know why I like to sleep with you? It's because your arms and legs are SO warm when I crawl in next to you". I decided right there, that he's only going to be "the baby" a little longer and what the heck, what's one more warm body in the family bed? I haven't asked him since then to sleep in his own bed. Although, he does start out every night upstairs in his bed tucked away under his sheets.

When he's 12, I'll be lucky if he even wants me to tuck him in at night, but until that day comes I'll keep my feet and legs warm under the covers and enjoy the snuggling just a little bit longer. The girls are welcome too, but Annie refuses to sleep in my bed because she says I snore. I'll save that for another blog. Here's to keeping our kids "babies" just a little longer!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Our Giada afternoon snack

We are on a health kick in our house and quite frankly who couldn't benefit from more veggies? The problem is convincing the kids that veggies are just as appetizing and yummy as chips or something equally as bad for you. I'm not saying that's not ok once in awhile, but we do enough damage to our body without eating like "crap" everyday.

Anyway, we were watching Giada on the foodnetwork today and there was an awesome recipe for black olive dip and veggies. Of course, I don't look a thing like her when I cook or ever (Cam has a major crush on her. Dream on, babe!). So, the dip is totally easy: black olives, garlic, and parsley mixed together in the food processor. I used chicken broth to mix it, but she used olive oil. I cut up some veggies: carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, and fennel. I thought it was super yummy, but wasn't totally convinced my brood would enjoy, but as you can see, they loved it! Well, the girls loved it. Charlie used ranch dressing to dip (he uses the carrots as a spoon to eat the dressing). Gross!!!!

I think I ruined our healthy snack with homemade mac and cheese for the kids tonight. But, it was a Cooking Light recipe. Oh, yeah the girls and I did our workout this morning (Debbie Siebers' Slim in 6) and now, I can't climb the steps. I want to say it's my aging body, but I'm going to have to admit it's because I'm totally out of shape and my butt is no longer a muscle, but a blob at the top of my legs. So, here's to healthy living!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Why We Love Daddy

First of all, my name is Kris Pico and I am a blog slacker, but I intend to change all that. I'm turning over a new leaf. I think I'll just have to start from here and go forward because SO much has happened since my last post. Remember I'm a blog slacker!

With that being said, the kids and I wanted to let Cam know exactly how we feel about him. We don't do this enough in our house. I'll go first:
  • He is a good, Christian man who makes me a better person and that's not easy
  • He is a loyal, family man
  • He leads our family in an honorable manner and thinks of the kids and I before he thinks of himself (most of the time. I mean he's not perfect)
  • He's a success story and is awesome at whatever he does
  • He's hot (you knew that was coming)
  • He makes me laugh and laughs at my stupid jokes
  • He does practical, nice things for me (his love language)
  • He lets me have an equivalent of a small farm and isn't even fond of animals
  • He doesn't care if he has clean underwear everday and is understanding if dinner isn't on the stove every night.
  • He supports me, encouraging me to live up to my potential
  • He is an awesome involved daddy
  • Most importantly, he loves his God, his wife, and his kids

Told you he was hot...this is why I had a crush on him. I know totally have to start somewhere. 67 is my favorite number ;)

Here's what Annie has to say about her daddy:
  • I always learn something new with daddy.
  • Daddy can always make something that would be hard, easy. He helps me a lot.
  • He's really smart and good at math.
  • I love when daddy laughs. It's contagious.
  • Daddy has a great sense of humor.
  • If I get hurt, I can trust dad to make me feel better.
  • Overall, he's really nice. I love him!

Isabelle's turn:
  • When I get hurt, he always makes me laugh.
  • I love it when he comes home and hugs us.
  • When he smiles, I smile.
  • I love it when he plays with us. He's awesome.
  • He's so cool!

Last, but certainly not least Charlie has this to say about daddy:
  • Daddy plays with me.
  • He is sweet and loving.
  • I like it when he buys me toys.
  • Daddy's very handsome.
  • I like it when he comes home from work and plays with me.

I guess that says it all. These are some of the things we love about daddy. And not to obsess about my blog, I promise to post more if you all read more.