Bar Mitzvah in Boulder

Last weekend Adam and I spent a glorious weekend away, thanks to an invite from Adam’s high school friend, Andy.

His eldest son was becoming a Bar Mitzvah. In Boulder, CO.

For the second time this year, I leaned on my family to help us out with the kids. This time, my father and aunt came to the rescue.

Sam and Aaron snuggle up to Auntie Doris.

Sam and Aaron snuggle up to Auntie Doris.

Dad can entertain the kids with anything!

Dad can entertain the kids with anything!

Learning to cut with scissors while we are away.

Learning to cut with scissors while we are away.



Grandpa puts up with all kinds of abuse while we are away.

And while Auntie Doris and Grandpa were busy entertaining the kids, wiping butts, breaking up fights, driving to kids activities, foraging for food and doing loads and loads of laundry, we were doing this…

Saturday afternoon hike with Holly (my high school friend and college roommate) and her husband Jose.

Saturday afternoon hike at the Flatirons with Holly (my high school friend and college roommate) and her husband Jose.

Bar Mitzvah celebration with Adam's high school buddies Andy, Jamie and Brian.

Bar Mitzvah celebration with Adam’s high school buddies Andy, Jamie and Brian.

We are so old it we can't even get it together for the first shot!

We are so old it we can’t even get it together for the first shot!

The day after the Bar Mitzvah Adam and I went to brunch at Andy’s house, then did a 3 hour hike, then drove to town for lunch, then went back to the hotel to change, had afternoon drinks and apps at a nearby restaurant, then went to see a long movie. We got home exhausted. It was 9pm. We couldn’t believe how much fun you could fit into a day when you didn’t have to cater to your kids needs!

Hiking Mount Sanitas

Hiking Mount Sanitas

Among Andy’s many accomplishments that I saw this weekend (plastic surgeon, devoted father and husband, fluent Hebrew reader), he also treated us to a gift bag of locally made products, including his own product, Good Day Chocolate. They are sold in Whole Foods or online, and they are super yummy and truly have the effect they advertise on the front.


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Mother’s Day 2016

This will be my last year as a mother of kids in their single digits. By next year Jack will be 10. Every year he gets older. It makes me wonder when the Mother’s Day activities will change.

This year, I started the morning with cards and well wishes from the kids and Adam. The kids bought me some reflexology treatments and Adam got me a gift card to my favorite clothing shop – BCBG.DSC_0364

Then he went out and got lox and bagels for the family.

tapperAfterwards Jack and I headed over to the Temple for Hebrew School. Yes, I also go to Hebrew School. Going each week is such a treat it’s like having a mom treat every week. We sit around having adult conversation and contemplate the meaning of Torah translations. Having an intellectual pursuit is like itching an ancient scratch I forgot I had. The only part of my brain I exercise as a mom is the part whatever nervous waitresses who are constantly in the weeds use. I wake up every morning in a panic about how far behind I am then frantically try to do a million mindless tasks that all had to be done yesterday all while being interrupted by four kids with more urgent needs that need to be address instantly. I’m Tapper right before all the beer bottles start falling off the tables and the angry customers storm him.

I got a quick run in after my class and before I had to pick Jack up. That was a nice treat too.

Adam watched the other kids during all that and when I got back we switched. He went out for a run.  (He has started training for the Marathon again.)

I got the bubble blower out and all the kids went crazy. I love that Jack still finds it just as fun as the twins do. DSC_0377

Later I took the older boys to the park while Adam stayed back with Ben. Unfortunately it was too hard to him to join us. But it was a glorious afternoon for the other kids and I so enjoyed watching them make up their own silly games and frolic together in the budding weather.

Oz Park Selfie

Oz Park Selfie

Adam managed to convince Ben to meet us later for dinner. Food is a much more powerful motivator for Ben then playing in the park!

I was treated to dinner at our favorite Chinese/Sushi/Thai place. I still can’t get used to the fact that they combine all the Asian countries together as one in Chicago. That would be like going out to a Spanish/French/Italian Restaurant in China! Still it didn’t stop me from enjoying my Shanghainese dumplings alongside a plate of Sashimi and Lycheetini.IMG_3823 (1)

It was another successful Mother’s Day. As much as these kids can drive me nuts at times, I was very grateful to be spending the day with them.

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Happy 4th Birthday Twins!

Ah the mistakes I made the first two times I became a mom. The effort I put together for the older boys for their birthday, none of it that they remember. If I could write a letter to my younger mom self it would be this: kids don’t have any long term memory before the age of five. So if you can do the very basic necessities of keeping them safe, fed, and loved with ample sleep and somewhat clean you’ve done enough.

Why kill yourself and set future unrealistic expectations when you don’t have to? My god the hoopla we made for Jack’s 4th birthday! Build slowly. And with the twins, that is what we are doing.

Reminding them often that it’s their birthday at this age is enough for them to feel special. In fact, I think they feel special without any reminding. I think this because Sam woke up and put his costume king crown and and told us he was the king. I mean, what is more special than that?

Still, we did our best to make it special at every moment of the day…

We started with breakfast pancakes. Last time I made a carb/sugar bomb pancake breakfast the kids all said they hated it so I didn’t do that again. This time, multigrain pancakes with mini chocolate chips, topped with whipped cream, melted nutella, more mini chocolate chips and sprinkles.


Sam, AKA the king, blew the candles out right away. Aaron huffed and puffed until finally I had to ‘help him’. But everyone loved the pancakes, Jack had 2 helpings.

Every hour I was sure to do something new, even if it was just blowing up $4 huge balloons with rubber bands that bounce on their hands. They were so happy with such simple entertainment. I loved them so much for that.

Adam had a meeting in the suburbs so we packed up and headed out with him. He dropped us at the Morton Arboretum and we hung out while he worked.

We were so lucky to have the warmest, sunniest day of the week for the twins birthday.

DSC_0322 DSC_0309 DSC_0313 (1)

We also found all the frogs in their new Ribbit! The Exhibit.


Next we headed to the bakery to buy birthday cupcakes for dessert.DSC_0348

And since we were there, we got them an afternoon treat as well.DSC_0349

When we got home our lovely sitter, Camila, knocked on the door bearing presents that only someone who knows the twins like the back of her hand could chose for them.


Soon after the older boys came home from school and after a good play with their new toys, we headed out to a special dinner for the twins at the Burger Bar. They ordered huge milkshakes that they barely touched and the server brought a special bowl of ice cream with 2 candles for them.


By the time we got home we were exhausted and over sugared. I asked the twins and they agreed to save the cupcakes for another night. And since Camila came by, we didn’t bother to open their presents that their family members got them. I guess we’ll just have to celebrate again tomorrow…

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