Saturday, October 31, 2009

Calling all NOVA moms (and dads) - Awesome consignment sale!

For all of my local moms, aunts, cousins and friends who have a need to buy kids stuff and like a good deal - the Annandale United Methodist Church Consignment Sale (located at 6935 Columbia Pike (@Gallows Road) in Annandale) is November 14 from 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM (Most Items ½ Price @ 12:15 PM).

Brett and I went to the last one and left with a second pack-n-play, brand new (still in the box) tot basketball hoop, clothes, movies, and a new pair of shoes for Peter and I think we spent like $34 (retail the basketball hoop alone is more than that!)

Stolen from their website, here is more about what they have:

Mark your calendar for Saturday, November 14th!

Shop the Annual Fall Kid’s Stuff Consignment Sale at Annandale United Methodist Church. A portion of the proceeds from the sale benefits the Early Learning Program and Weekday Preschool of AUMC.

The sale features:

♦ Clothing from Infant to Teen Size 14 AND Maternity

♦ Costumes, Dress-Up and Holiday Clothing

♦ Children’s Sports Equipment and Uniforms

♦ Everything a New Mother Needs!

♦ Strollers, Bikes, Cribs, Changing Tables, Car Seats, Booster Seats, Toys, Dolls, Games, Puzzles, Art Supplies, Infant Slings, High Chairs, Little Tykes

♦ Books, CDs and DVDs for Children AND Adults

♦ Holiday Items

♦ Much, Much More at Incredible Prices!

WHEN: November 14th

9:00 AM – 1:00 PM (Most Items ½ Price @ 12:15 PM)

WHERE: 6935 Columbia Pike (@Gallows Road)

For more information, and if you would like to consign your gently used children’s items or to volunteer at the sale, please call the school at 703.256.110, visit the school web site at and click on the link for the consignment sale, or email Become a fan of the "Kids’ Stuff Consignment Sale” on Facebook or follow our blog at

Monday, October 26, 2009

Aaron gets his revenge

Peter loves to pick on his brother. Whether it is by pushing him or taking his toys; there are much more moments of bickering than hugging and playing nicely.

Well, Aaron figured out how to annoy Peter right back:

Sunday, October 25, 2009

For the love of Journey and Billy Ocean

Our kids have awesome taste in music:


The other night, we decided to see how much information Peter was picking up; so we asked him the following:

Me - Peter, what is Daddy's name

Peter - Brett

Me - What is Mommy's name?

Peter - Jellyfish

Needless, to say it got a quite a rise out of me. We had him saying it all night, and laughed everytime.

The following day he was still on the Jellyfish kick:

Friday, October 23, 2009

Oh, the neglect...

I have let my blog go... as you MAY have noticed.

In the past I have gone a week or two behind, but at this point I am almost 3 months behind on the goings on of the Gardner Family!

I am determined to catch up, but I literally have 50 items to post!!!

This comes due to the new and very busy schedule that we are trying to keep up with. Besides being parents, Brett and I are both working more than usual.

This month, Brett did a presentation at work which he worked many late nights getting ready for.

And I am now working at Curves and Jazzercise! Plus, my Curves position changed to Assistant Manager, so I am there more and have to cover when other people cannot.

While I work on catching up, here is a short over view of what is going on with us to tide you over:

BRETT - Brett celebrated his 29th birthday this month, and is working harder than ever at Noblis. He is now working from home on Tuesdays, which enables me to work in the afternoon/evening. He is sad to no longer be playing in a church band, but happy to have one less commitment.

JILLIAN - I have now completed 2 sprint distance triathlons, the first in September and the second in October. Working 3 days a week at Jazzercise and 3-4 days at Curves.

PETER - Just like his mom, Peter is quite a talker. He has many words in his vocabulary, and is stringing sentences together. However, he is also trouble like his mom, and is giving me a run for my money during this terrible 2s phase. His favorite things right now are Pixar Cars, Thomas the Train, and Sesame Street. He is also completely obsessed with babies (also like his mom!), but does not think Aaron is a baby. I think he believes Aaron is a wrestling partner.

AARON - Aaron is still not walking (he is 15 months), but he is really close. Maybe he is waiting for me to catch up on my blog? He does talk a lot though, says "up" "Mommy" "Daddy" "All done" "please" "Juice" and some others. He is a VERY focused child and will play with the same toy for hours. He is also very good with his fine motor skills - we recently found him stacking wine corks on top of each other. I think he did a better job that I would have!

As a family, we try to do as much as we can together since our work schedules force us to be apart a lot (the kids are almost always with one of us, but not always with both). It takes away from our social life and volunteering at church as much, but that is the best thing for the moment.

More from Gardner Headquarters to come!


Back in September I got a text one morning from my friend Georgia informing me that she saw an ad in the paper for a job at Jazzercise.

The position was working child care Tuesday, Thursday, Friday from 9-10am; and I could BRING MY KIDS!

I applied and interviewed and started working the first week in October. The boys and I go in 3 days a week to a big room full of toys and some big exercise balls (that the kids love playing with). If there are no kids, we are allowed to leave at 9:30am and I still get paid for the whole time.

When there are kids the parents are required to pay me $3/child in addition to the pay I get from Jazzercise. Plus I get a free membership to Jazzercise!

So, pretty much I am getting paid to run a play group for my kids 3 times a week, and have another free gym membership (in addition to my free membership at Curves).

It is awesome!

Especially now that it is getting colder and they are cooped up in the house all the time. Even when other kids don't show up sometimes I let my boys play past 9:30am before bringing them home.

If you are a stay at home mom and are looking for a way to workout with day care in the DC area, let me know!


I wrote about me making house rules a while back:

No fighting, No biting
Big hugs, No drugs
Say please and thanks, and you won't get spanks
Follow the rules, stay cool

Here is a video of how Peter says the rules to me:

Feeling Hot! Hot! Hot!

Aaron has watched Brett and I blow on food and tell him that it was hot for so long, he has started doing it himself:

More Bath time fun with the Gardner boys

We really take too many bath pictures.

But when our subjects are so charismatic, it is hard to stop!

These picture and video were taken sometime in the summer. We have much more of them to post too, just working on uploading everything!


Georgia's Birthday Celebration

When I was helping my friend Georgia plan her birthday celebration this year, I found out that the Legwarmers were playing at the State Theater (right by her house!).

The Legwarmers are a local 80's cover band that is known for their audiences getting into the theme by wearing all 80's gear!

We all got into the 80's action, thinking that we were REALLY over the top. But before the concert we had a great dinner at The Beach Shack (and restaurant/bar next to State Theater).

Almost everyone there was dolled up with big hair and pegged pants - PURE 80's! We were not even close to as over the top as some of the other people.

The only thing better than the food and people watching at the Beach Shack was Brett's beer - Pork Slap (which was not very good, but we had to buy because the name made us laugh)!

After dinner we headed to the theater to secure a good spot to watch the show. While we waited we danced to 80's tunes and took lots of pictures:

FINALLY the band started, and I think it is safe to say it was worth the wait. They really put on a show! In addition to their lead guitar, base guitar, keyboard, and 2 vocalists, they had THREE male back up dancers (one in cut off jean shorts).

It was fun all around and we all danced and sang along with the band.

Here is a little taste of the Legwarmers in action:

After the show, we all headed back to Georgia's house so she could open her gifts.


Caps Pre-season!

During the Caps pre-season, season ticket holders got 2 extra tickets to a game.

My Mom's friend, Nora, who usually uses our 3rd ticket wasn't coming, so Brett and I had 4 tickets.

Brett invited our friend Moe, and I invited my friend Georgia.

While we weren't watching hockey, Georgia and I practiced our self portraits:

We kept making fun of Brett and Moe for being on a man date - and this picture sort of proves our point:

The Caps won, and the game was fun (even when my friends were making fun of my cow bell):

Eric and Julia's Wedding

Labor Day weekend is usually when Brett and I head up to Syracuse for the GREAT New York State Fair.

Since both of our boys were born in summer, we have missed the past two years, but thought that this year was going to be their first trip.

Our friend's Eric and Julia had other plans - their wedding!

Brett and I decided that we should be there, and hold off on the kids first fair trip for one more year.

Eric and Julia got married in Chantilly at an out door golf course ceremony.

The ceremony was preformed by Dwaine Darrah (the pastor of New Life Westmoreland) and was a really well done and beautiful service.

After the service there was a cocktail reception with a HUGE baked brie display (clearly, that was a BIG hit).

Once they opened the doors to the reception hall we were introduced to some of the other great touches that Julia and Eric had at their wedding, including cards for guests to leave advice.

Best of all they had a photo booth with dress up clothes and funny props (we don't have pictures of that because they were done by the professionals).

After some sill picture taking we sat down for dinner, and a slide show of the bride and groom.

As well as speeches:

Then the band started! They had hired a really fun mo-town type band. we had a great time dancing, but it was Julia and her brother who stole the show:

Later they did the requisite cutting of the cake (which we were shocked wasn't a little messier):

After hours of mingling and dancing the night away, we bid the couple farewell and called it a night. Congrats to Julia and Eric, and thank you for having us at your lovely (and super fun) wedding!

Taylor Love Triathlon

This past summer, I decided that I was going to sign up for a triathlon. The day I signed up, I had run 10 minutes without stopping... for the first time in my life. Oh yeah, and I didn't know how to swim laps.

I signed up for a "super sprint" triathlon called the Taylor Love Triathlon - the distances were: 300 yard swim, 18 mile bike ride, 2 mile run - for a triathlon this is nothing, for me this was a marathon.

I had 9 weeks to train, so I started with a bang, we had an intern living with us over the summer and she was able to teach me how to swim laps and pace my breathing. The other thing that was a big help to my training was my friend Georgia signing up to run a different triathlon with me three weeks after the Taylor Love.

Georgia and I trained together about 5 days a week, usually at 5:30am, and were shocked at how quickly we went from not being able to swim a lap or run for 5 minutes without gasping for air, to being in really good shape!

The morning of the race, I woke up to a sweet note from Brett on the white board by our front door:

The race was in Herndon, so I had told Brett to meet me at the finish line around 10am (when I was estimating I would finish).

Well, I WAY under estimated my ability. Even though I was one of the slower racers I ended up finishing closer to 9am! The whole thing took me about 2 hours! I was very impressed with myself, because my real goal was just to finish. However, I was sad that my boys weren't at the finish line waiting for me.

I did have friends, Meghan and Addy, racing with me so I wasn't totally alone though.

Here are some post race shots:

After the race I went back to see the awards ceremony (knowing I wasn't getting any prizes, but wanting to know how fast people were). The winners came in just over an hour!!! AMAZING!

The second best part of the day (after finishing), was when the second place male was called to collect his award. He happened to be sitting next to me and when he came back from getting his award he asked me if I lived in the area. Thinking he wanted directions or something, I said yes. He handed me his award, and said - "Here, maybe you can use this. I live out of town."

It was a 30 day free gym membership AND a $50 spa certificate. In my opinion, that totally made the training worth it!

Ella and Cutchin visit

This blog has very little text, but a whole lot of cute.

My oldest childhood friend, Georgia's, sister has 2 kids around the same ages as my kids. They live in Jonesville, VA, but when they come into town we try to get together with the. When we do make the schedule work, they play wonderfully (as you can see):