Monday, December 3, 2012


Today, Scout turns three.  This means that this blog can no longer be about one mom's highly imperfect journey parenting a two-year-old.  

So, do I think that today will be any different then yesterday, last week or two months ago? No.  I think Scout will continue to strip naked at the drop of a hat, pee in teacups, draw on herself, swear and talk like a pirate.  But, I also think she will continue to be the best known kid on the airplane, a cheerleader for her parents when they are running races, a friend who kisses others "boo boos," a girl who is truly iridescent, and a daughter whose cry will always break my heart.  

Happy 3rd Birthday, Scoutzilla!

With a little luck and help from Starbucks, I think that we can make it to your 4th birthday.

Scout celebrating her 3rd birthday at Build-a-Bear

Monday, November 19, 2012

"What the Heck?"

After an extremely long day at work, I arrived at daycare to pick up Scout and my niece, Izzy.  I quickly scanned the daycare for Scout.  I saw three girls, including my niece, coloring at the table, two boys sitting on the couch playing a video game, and Scout, with her underwear and skirt around her ankles, standing in the middle of the play area.  Even though my initial instinct was to turn around and leave her there, like a good mother, I fought that urge.  Instead I approached her and said, "Oh Scouty, what are you doing?"  This is when I realized why her underwear and skirt were around her ankles.  Directly in front of her was a delicate, red child's teacup filled with a not so mysterious yellow liquid. Scout, ever the sly child, looked at me, shrugged her shoulders and said, "What the heck?" 

Monday, November 12, 2012


Photo Credit: Andy Molloy.
Pictured: Jackson, Wade & Scout
Not Pictured: Me
Last Sunday, Jackson ran his first 5K race.  Given his hesitation about the race, I decided to join Wade, Scout & Jackson to make it a family run. Well, as it turns out Jackson did not need me, and I was the slowest member of my family.  However, what made this race a truly special event for Jackson was the fact that his picture made the paper!  It was incredibly sweet to watch his excitement and pride at having his picture in the paper. 

And, because this is a blog specifically for Scout.  I do have to mention that Scout is the real CELEBRITY in the family.  This was not Scout's paper debut.  She had been photographed with Wade running a race in Augusta as part of the Bond Brook Summer Trail series in August of 2011, and the photo made the paper again in the spring of 2012.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Letting Go...

Anyone who knows me, knows that I can be a "little" uptight (I can hear my husband laughing about the use of "little" right now).  However, I was raised to be determined and focused, which can look like uptight behavior.

While parenting Jackson, it was initially easy to maintain determination and focus.  Essentially, he did exactly what I wanted him to do.  He potty-trained easily, went to bed without a whimper, and was the model child in public situations.  Life was easy, and I continued on the path of having things exactly the way I wanted them to be.

And, then came Scout...  Nothing with Scout is easy (if you know Scout, this is not a lie or an exaggeration of the truth).  Scout, who is almost three, still wears pull-ups, rarely ever naps, and is a, dare I say, bully at daycare.  Life with Scout is NOT easy, and I can not continue on the path of having things exactly the way I want them to be.

However, this post is not about praising Jackson and belittling Scout.  I love my children equally (sometimes?).  This post is actually an apology.  Recently, more often than not, I am short tempered with my children, which is not fair to them.  I need to let go of having things the way I want them to be or expect them to be.   Accidents and unplanned events occur on a daily basis.  If I don't start to embrace them and adjust, I will continue to miss out on life (and make my family miserable ☹).

I love you Scoutie and Jackson!

Jackson & Scout returning home from a recent weekend trip.

A girl after my own heart.

As daring as ever!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


Scout does EVERYTHING to the extreme, which can be a good thing or a bad thing.  When she is happy or excited, enthusiasm reins her little body.  Her smile spreads from ear to ear, and her laughter is contagious.  When she is upset, her grief is inconsolable, and her cries break my heart.

On September 30, 2012, I completed my first (and probably last) marathon.  It was not the experience that I had hoped it to be, but I finished with the support of many people.  My mother was both wise and generous to book hotel rooms in Portland the night before the race.  And by rooms, plural, I mean that my mother, AKA "The Saint,"  agreed to have both kids spend the night with her, while Wade and I got to spend the night ALONE.  Speaking of Wade, he outdid himself running with me from miles 12-18.  Even though he complained about carrying a water bottle, and he gave some of my food away to a fellow runner, I might have given up if it was not for him.  At the start of the race, it was a HUGE treat to see my longtime college (and after college) roommate, Kim.  Kim was running her first half marathon and running with her for the first six and a half miles helped me get the marathon off to a good start!  By the end of the marathon, I really had nothing left to give emotionally or physically.  So,  it was nice to be joined by my super speedy sister-in-law who graciously ran, or should I say walked, with me the last six grueling miles.  As if the support I received from my mother, Wade, Jen & Kim was not enough, I was also very fortunate to have friends stand in the pouring rain and cheer me on.  

So you might me asking yourself, "How does Scout fit in to this story?  This is a blog about Life with Scout."  With .2 miles left in the marathon, I was greeted by Scout sitting on top of Wade's shoulders.  She, of course, was drenched from the rain, but beaming~a smile that spread from ear to ear.  Prompted by both Wade and Jen, Scout cheered for me.  The kind of cheer that I so desperately needed to finish the marathon.  And while I am convinced that the jostling motion from sitting on Wade's shoulders and running probably gave her brain damage, I am ever so grateful for her ability to do EVERYTHING to the extreme.

While this picture is not from the marathon, it does show her sweet smile!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

That Green Thing

A few weeks ago I was joking with a colleague that Scout LOVED all green vegetables~ lettuce, peas, broccoli, even brussel sprouts.  So, I guess that I should have not been surprised when I heard Jackson screaming, "Mom, she ate it.  That green thing on the counter."  The "green thing" that Jackson could not identify was a zucchini, and he was correct.  Scout had snatched the zucchini from the counter and took a rather large bite leaving bits of zucchini on her face. 
Can you see the zucchini on her face?

In our house, only Scout would bite into a zucchini like that!  However, that was not the end of the zucchini.  About four eggs, a little flour and THREE cups of sugar later, Jackson was enjoying his favorite zucchini muffins!

Sunday, August 26, 2012


It is often hard to believe that two children born and raised by the same parents could behave so differently.  My children looked very similar as toddlers.  Both Jackson and Scout had "slightly" larger than normal heads (a Rybarczyk family trait that I, personally, LOVE), bright blue eyes (Wade claims came from him) and golden blonde curly hair.  That is where their similarities came to a SCREECHING halt.   Jackson is essentially an "easy" child to parent.  He is very well behaved, quiet and can entertain himself.  I will also add that Jackson is messy (a trait that I am convinced comes from Wade) and highly anxious.   Now, Scout is a very different story.  She is a "challenging" child to parent.  Scout is not well behaved, quiet, or entertained by her toys.  In fact, if Scout is EVER quiet or entertaining herself something VERY bad is happening in our home.

So, why all the talk about differences.  On our last Friday of summer vacation, I had the "crazy" idea to take three children Jackson, Scout and Tucker (my nephew) to Splashtown (don't worry, I wouldn't embark on such a perilous journey without a little help from Starbucks). At Splashtown the differences between Jackson and Scout were blinding.  Jackson wanted to know where I was at every moment, despite my best attempts to keep he and his cousin informed.  Also, Jackson was fearful of some of the water rides. And, to be honest, I see nothing wrong with a healthy sense of fear.  But, I worry when Jackson's fears reduce him to tears.  I also worry when a child like Scout has NO fear.  Scout wanted nothing to do with me at Splashtown.  She would try to "run" away every chance she got and because Scout is small she could maneuver through the crowds better than I.  You may be asking yourself where Scout was headed when she was running away?  Scout was insistent that she could ride the Tornado.  A water slide that was funnel shaped, about a mile off the ground and appeared to make adults pee their pants with fear.  

I guess the bottom line is that I would like Jackson and Scout to be less different. Jackson could really use some of Scout's no fear attitude, and Scout really use some of Jackson's overly cautious demeanor.  

(I tried REALLY hard to take pictures of the three kids at Splashtown, but I firmly believe that I would need professional photography equipment comparable to that of National Geographic to photograph Scout running around Splashtown; however, I do have a few pictures from the cottage this weekend.)

Jackson "goofing" around in the kayak

Finally,  a photo of Scout without a lollipop in her mouth

Mommy & Scout before our kayak voyage

Monday, August 20, 2012


"Some of us get dipped in flat, some in satin, some in gloss... But every once in a while you find someone who's iridescent, and when you do, nothing will ever compare."
~From the book, "Flipped" by Wendelin Van Draanen

So, unfortunately, as a middle school teacher my quotes or references to text are limited to juvenile literature.  However,  the quote still fits Scout.  As her personality continues to develop, I grow to love her more each day.  Whether she is standing on a kick board in the water "pretending to surf," spontaneously kissing a friend's "boo boo" or stripping off her clothes and running around a birthday party naked, Scout is truly iridescent; she shines.  

Saturday, August 11, 2012

"Arrr, I'm a Pirate!"

Aboard the HMS Bounty-Belfast, ME

Ever since our trip to LegoLand last month, Scout has been fascinated with pirates.  It all started innocently enough with the LegoLand show "Battle for Brickbeard's Bounty." At first, I was convinced that Scout would not even sit through this show, so imagine my surprise when she sat so quietly with her eyes fixated on Brickbeard and Sawtooth, the shark.  Upon our return home, Scout was still talking about pirates (and Sawtooth), so my mother sent us a link to a youTube video of the show.  Scout has watch that video everyday for over a month.  But that's not all...she calls herself a pirate, talks like a pirate, and she even smells like a pirate(sometimes)!  And when she's not the pirate, her dolls are pirates.   

So, it was quite fortuitous that a replica of the HMS Bounty (a vessel used in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies) was going to be docked in Belfast while we were visiting Searsport this weekend.  Scout got to tour a "pirate" ship, and get her picture taken with a "pirate."  Secretly, I was hoping that they would invite her to join their crew, sadly, they did not.

Batten down the hatches and shiver me timbers,  I'm raising a pirate. Yikes!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Breaking My Heart...

There are very few things that can break my heart.  Before I had children, I was a sucker for a sappy commercial or news story about a dog.  In fact, one day when I was on my way to work, I heard a news story about a dog that was stranded on the roof of a house in a flood zone.  I'll admit it; I cried the rest of the trip into work.  However,  these days, one sure way to break my heart is the sound of Scout's cry.  Over the past week, Scout has reverted back to her nightly routine of crying at bedtime.  This cry brings on immediate stress and a tug at my heart to comfort her.   Wade, who can at times be the more rational parent, has been reminding me that we need to stay strong and not take her out of her bed.  However, when your child is crying for Momma it is truly heart breaking.  

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Have you met Scout(zilla)?

Well, the answer to this question is simple.  If you were traveling anywhere on the east coast last week, you probably met Scout (aka Scoutzilla).  Scout made fast friends with most strangers she met... elderly women gave her stuffed animals, she scored *FREE* food on an airplane, and a flight attendant greeted her by name (and gave her a high-five) outside of the airport.   If you don't know Scout you can be easily charmed by her blue eyes, white blond hair and vibrant personality.  She can even charm a smile out of a TSA officer.  (Unfortunately, as a result of my poor parenting skills she told everyone that her name was Scoutzilla, oops.)  

This summer Scout took her third trip to Florida.  And, this trip, by far, was her best.  Long gone are the days of Scout and I hiding in an airplane bathroom because I am too embarrassed to show my face on the plane.  Scout successfully endured the steamy, daily Florida temperatures of 95+ degrees with a smile.  She stayed in her stroller at LegoLand and didn't try to jump off of any rides. And, most importantly, to her mommy and nana, she was well behaved during our shopping trips.   Scout ROCKED Florida!  

Scout & Jackson at the entrance to LegoLand
Sitting in her stroller 
Scout on the Carousel with Nana & Jackson
Scout sharing a giggle with Nana

So, have you met Scout?

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Boudreau + Rybarczyk= Water Lover

Well, summer vacation is underway.  BS (Before Scout) summer meant lounging on the beach, collecting sea glass and playing in the water at the camp.  AS (After Scout), well, let's just say trips to the beach or camp have not been so much fun.  As stated numerous times before, Scout is extremely active and adding water to Scout's activity level equaled a nervous, cranky and (some might say) crazy mother.  However, something is different this year.  Scout is entertained by the water.  She will sit and play in the water with her water toys (almost) independently.    I guess it was bound to happen.  Rybarczyk, my last name, means "fisherman" and Boudreau, Wade's last name, means "waters edge."  Together, we have created the cutest little water lover...
Playing with sand toys


And, it wouldn't be fair if I didn't include a photo of Jackson
And, it wouldn't really be a blog post about Scout if there wasn't some type of "comical" event that happened.  So, here it is...

Scout has been doing so well with her potty training.  She has been primarily wearing underwear, so I let her go to the beach in a swimsuit without a swim diaper.  After she had been playing peacefully on the beach, she let me know that she had to poop.   On the long, hilly and exhausting journey up to the camp, Scout pooped.  By the time we reached the camp, and I tried to take off the swimsuit, poop was everywhere.  At this point, I was overwhelmed by poo.  Seeing my frustration (fear? panic?), Scout starts repeating, "God Dammit, God Dammit"  Enter my friend Stacy, who saved my life even though she was laughing at me...

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Do you know where your cell phone is?

Usually, I do.  However, I have a bad reputation of not responding to people as quickly as they may like me to (um hum, you know who you ALL are...).

Well, last night I went to bed with my cell phone on my night stand.  And, this morning, I woke up with my cell phone on my night stand.  But, after waking up this morning, things got a little busy.  Scout had pooped (surprise, surprise), Pilot had puked, and Jackson had to get ready for swim lessons.  Just your typical morning.  When things were more settled, I went to retrieve my cell phone from the night stand, and it was not there.  I searched the bed, the floor and the closet.  I searched Scout's room, Jackson's room  and the sitting room.  Finally, I decided to try my luck and ask Scout where she had put "mommy's phone".   In my mind, I thought that she would respond, "I dunno." But, imagine my surprise when her little fingers took mine, and she led me upstairs to Jackson's room.  Imagine my even greater surprise when she stood in front of Jackson's TV/VCR combo and pointed to the slot for the video cassette.  And, sure as shit (shit, unfortunately has been on my mind a lot lately) there was my phone sitting on top of a cassette inside the VCR.  

What can I say? That's life with Scout...

Monday, May 28, 2012

Nobody is Perfect

Dear Scout,

I am 100% certain that you will NOT look back on your childhood, and say, "Wow, my mother was perfect."  And, at this point, I will be lucky if you don't remember me as the crazy lady sitting in the corner, rocking back and forth, chanting, "It will be alright..."  

Anyway, just know that I love you, and I am doing the best that I can.

Love, Mom

Monday, May 14, 2012

Mother's Day Weekend

Happy belated Mother's Day!  Mother's Day weekend at our home started off just like any other typical weekend.  Scout, with her boundless energy, climbed out of her crib around 6 am and headed out to find her first victim.  With Jackson at a sleepover, that meant me.  Together, we walked downstairs for some good quality TV time with Blue's Clues (whose clues?).  After Scout was settled with Blue and Joe, I started to make a ridiculously complicated raw carrot cupcake recipe.  I LOVE the idea of raw food, and I truly believe it is the best food for your body, but all of the recipes are sooo time consuming.  After about an hour and a half of work, this is what my final product looked like:

Delicious, but complicated Carrot Cake Cupcakes
Next, it was off to Searsport to visit my mother for Mother's Day.  However, every trip to Searsport, recently, has involved a stop at the Co-op in Belfast.  So, we arrived at the Co-op to load up on some of my favorite snack foods and eat lunch.  It was no surprise, to us, that while we were eating, Scout would try to steal the cell phone of some poor, unsuspecting woman.  

The cell phone thief & her new friend
Scout & Daddy eating lunch
Finally, we arrived at my mother's house.  The weather was amazing, so we headed down to the beach where the kids thoroughly enjoyed the frigid ocean water. 


The day was incredible! And to top it off, my mother and I dined on ginormous lobsters for dinner (the kids and Wade wanted pizza).

Aren't they beautiful?

The weekend fun did not end on Saturday.  On Sunday, after an 8 mile run with the girls, we stopped at Starbucks before heading out to Wade's parent's camp.  The weather was far better then expected, and we got to enjoy some time on the dock polishing our "piggies."  However, all good times, and pedicures, must come to an end, and they did when a very curious Scout fell off the dock into the water!  

Saturday, May 5, 2012

What do you keep in your cabinets?....Scoutzilla

This afternoon, while I was doing some cooking, Scout found a "new" place to play.  It started simple enough.  A few pots and pans on the floor, then one child, two children and pillows in a cabinet.  No wonder I can't keep my house clean.

You may be asking yourself why my children are almost completely naked.  However, there is a good reason.  While I was cooking, the temperature in the kitchen reached a scorching eighty degrees.  

And, if there were any questions about my parenting style or lack there of the answer to this simple question will end all debate.  

Wade (to Scout):  "What's your name?"
Scout: "Scoutzilla"

Yes, I have trained my daughter that her name is Scoutzilla. 

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Safety First...

I think that I can safely summarize this post with two pictures of Scout from this weekend...

Who needs clothes when you have a helmet and a pull-up.  Rock-on my little Evil Kenevil!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

An Unsolved Mystery...

Scout's curiosity and zest for life are often the cause of unusual events within our home.  So, while this has become par for the course, yesterday's unusual event left, even, me scratching my head. 

Scout is doing a great job with her potty training; however, she still has accidents.  For this reason, I always have Scout wear a pull-up when we are outside of the home.  Yesterday, we had a morning out with my mother, Scout and Jackson's Nani.  When we left the house, Scout was wearing a pull-up.  When I took her to the bathroom at the restaurant, she was wearing a pull-up.  And, you guessed it, when we came home she was wearing a pull-up.  But, just 2 hours later, without the help of anyone, she was wearing underwear and her pull-up was missing.  So, what happened?  I have no idea.  When we returned home, Scout, Jackson & I headed outside to enjoy the sunshine.  I planted some pansies and raked the garden.  Jackson and Scout played with the outside faucet and rocks in the driveway.  At one point, Scout went into the house, but I watched her go in and stand in front of the TV.   Within two minutes, she was outside again.  As I was picking up the rake and the kid's toys, Scout asked me to hold her, so I picked her up.  Immediately, I felt that she was not wearing a pull-up; she had on underwear.  I carried her inside and checked the bathroom for the pull-up, and it was not there.  I couldn't believe it actually would have been put in the trash can, but I checked there too~no pull-up.  I asked Jackson if he knew what happened to Scout's pull-up, and he had no idea.  At this point, I gave up.  I figured the pull-up would eventually turn up, and it did...

Later that evening, I was putting my keys away in the "key jar."  As I approached the jar, I saw something white sticking out of it.  You guessed it... the missing pull-up. Another unsolved mystery courtesy of Scout!

The missing pull-up in the key jar

 And, because she is so adorable, I couldn't resist adding this photo from earlier today.  

Sporting sunglasses with a raincoat & rainboots

Saturday, April 21, 2012

"I LOVE Boston!"

Scout will happily tell you that she LOVES Boston, and I think that I can safely say that the residents of Boston LOVE Scout.  She was a big hit!  From the moment we hit the expo, Scout was high-fiving sales associates, charming people with her big blue eyes, and receiving "free" samples of every chocolate refueling confection.  
Outside the Expo
After the expo, we headed off to Wade & Ward's aunt and uncle's home, outside of Boston, which would serve as our "home" for the next couple of days.  The weather was gorgeous, so all of the kids spent time playing outside.
Coloring with chalk & sporting a Jet Blue sweatband from the expo
Scout, Ward & Izzy on the trampoline
Early the next morning, we were anxiously watching weather reports, packing bags, and getting four kids ready for the trek to mile 23 of the Boston Marathon.  We started our journey in Grafton and took the T to North Station.

Waiting for the T
Immediately upon arrival in Boston, we headed to Starbucks for an emergency caffeine fix.  And, although, people, who shall remain nameless, tease me about my LOVE of Starbucks, Starbucks did help us find our way home later that day.

Oooh, how I LOVE you!
Next, we began our "death march" to mile 23 of the marathon.  While the walk was not a problem for Jen and I, it did cause some problems for Tucker and Jackson.  Jackson tripped and fell in the middle of the street, and Tucker, depending on what version of the story you heard, twisted his ankle 3 to 9 times.  However, thanks to Jen, we had an awesome spot awaiting our arrival on Beacon street.  The kids were able to refuel and cool down while the adults watched elite runners pass by on the street below.  It was truly an amazing experience.

Scout & Izzy refueling and waiting for their dads 

Finally, Jen received the text that Wade and Ward had reached the 30k mark.  We anxiously gathered our belongings and headed to the street to cheer the guys on.   Unfortunately, my pictures are horrible.  Trying to find Wade and Ward in the crowd was nearly impossible, and when they arrived it happened so fast.

Mark hugging Wade
Ward (with Tucker) holding back the flood of tears
Now, it was a race to the finish for the guys and the families.  Learning our lesson from our 3 mile trek, we hopped on the T to reach the finish line.  Scout, once again, made fast friends.  She was extremely fascinated with the man standing in front of us, and I was extremely apprehensive about this stranger.  As it turns out, he couldn't have been nicer.  Scout's new friend, Angel, entertained her for at least 3 stops of the T.

As worried as I was about Scout in Boston, I must agree with her new saying, "I LOVE Boston!"
Now, if only Wade and Ward could qualify again for next year...

Friday, April 13, 2012

What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

Lately, it seems like I have become a "worry procrastinator".  While I am a worrier, I have so much on my plate that I don't worry, or, for that matter, plan for events until a day or two before they actually occur.  

Well, let the worrying begin...
On Sunday, our family will travel to Boston, so Wade can run the Boston Marathon.  I am extremely proud of Wade, and his brother Ward.  They have worked incredibly hard to gain entry to this marathon, and they have definitely put in the miles to ROCK Boston.  While I am slightly worried for Wade ( I want him to run the best race possible), he is not the main source of my worry.

This is the main source of my worry...
Scout, taking a little rest in time-out.
As I am writing this post, the following questions are running through my mind...How am I going to keep Scout safe in Boston?  Rather, how am I going to keep Boston safe from Scout? Will Jackson be scarred for life?  Are leashes "legal" for children? Where will time-out be located? 

What could possibly go wrong?

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Photos

I must confess that I am exhausted!  Between the nervous energy of running a half marathon and preparing for numerous Easter festivities, I am officially wiped-out.   However, I thought that I would share some pictures of Easter with Scout.  
The Easter Bunny arrived bright & early this morning~about 5:50ish!
Shortly after a candy-filled breakfast, Scout climbed into her Easter basket with her new bunny.
For approximately 1 hour today, Scout was clean and looking like a little lady.
Jackson, Nannie & Scout trying hard to get the "perfect" Easter picture.
Scout searching for Easter treasure during the egg hunt.
Scout & Mommy sharing a sweet Easter moment.

Happy Easter!

P.S. I totally for forgot to include this picture of Scout's hair from this morning...