About the Author

My husband and I met in college. After college, he moved to Florida for law school and several months later I found myself in the Sunshine State as well. After he graduated, we moved to DC — we lived there for five years, got engaged, married and experienced our 15 minutes of fame on an episode of HGTV’s My First Place.

Our Family

We had our first daughter and when she was a year old, decided to move back to the Midwest. Then, we landed in Chicago and had daughter #2. We decided to try for baby #3 and SURPRISE! Baby #3 AND baby #4 were on the way. So we quickly sold our condo (A shared garage in Chicago with FOUR carseats?! I’m crazy but not that crazy!) and we moved to what I call “suburbs lite” since our town is literally on the border of Chicago. I commuted into the city for my job until I was 8 months pregnant with the twins in the middle of winter and didn’t want to fall on my bum walking to the train. They arrived and I am now on what I like to call an extended maternity leave. (The twins are 3 years old.)

My husband works from home and coaches for a high school football team as well. The kids are in a variety of activities so we are always on the go! It’s a hectic life and full of craziness — and I have to remind myself to slow down and enjoy these moments before they are gone.


Friday — Alarm goes off at 6:32 am (I have a weird thing about setting alarms on the 5 or 10). I wake up my 1st grader and head downstairs to get breakfast ready and lunch packed before I head out the door to workout. Breakfast on Friday is always a mish-mash depending on if I stopped at the grocery store or not at any point during the week. This morning they are having cereal and a banana.

I head to OrangeTheory for class at 7:10 am. I pay $89/month for 8 classes ($11.13/class).

We had a bit of a cold snap overnight. It’s 7° and there’s no way these kids can stay in the house another minute — they are literally bouncing off the walls. So that’s exactly what we’re gonna do today 🙂

Toddler Time at SkyZone is from 10 am — 12 pm on Fridays. We haven’t been in a while. We invited one of my daughter’s friends through the app, so now it’s a playdate! He is coming with his nanny today. Toddler Time costs $8/child plus socks (we have ours from last time). We haven’t been in a while and you get more than just 2 hours to jump — they now hand you a snack for each kid (Goldfish crackers and a juice box) and Fridays are a glow-in-the-dark party! Plus they have added a climbing wall which was awesome! My preschooler loved seeing how high she could climb before letting go and falling into the foam pit.

Usually Friday night is pizza and movie night. I try to change up the pizza each week — sometimes we get delivery, sometimes everyone gets to make their own individual pizza with whatever toppings they want. Tonight I opted for Costco take-and-bake ($9). I needed OxiClean so I stopped into Costco on the way home from SkyZone. (BONUS — the kids got samples which is basically the highlight of any Costco trip!) Of course, I went in for OxiClean and came out with a cart full of goodies… (Total $119.42)

My oldest daughter has Girl Scouts after school, so I have to pick her up at 4:30 pm. I have a baby gift for a friend in DC that has been sitting on my counter for a couple weeks, so I leave a few minutes early to stop at UPS on the way. (Total $11.73)

The line at UPS was surprisingly not long at all, so I have a few extra minutes. I am in desperate need of new running/workout shoes so I pop into DSW. Remember the days when you could try on shoes for hours?! Yea, I have 5 minutes so I try on a few pairs, find one that works, checkout and run to Girl Scout pickup. (Total $87.99 — bonus, they were on sale!)

Friday total — $230.27


Saturday — Today is one of those days where I look at our calendar and wonder why I schedule so many things!

My husband takes the big girls to the LEGO premiere. My 5 year old is quickly becoming a LEGO enthusiast and when we saw that Pearachute was hosting a premiere event, I immediately booked it. She has been counting down the days since then. I love that Pearachute offers these special events — especially on the weekend so my husband has a chance to make memories with the kids too!

While they are at the movies, I take the twins to Irish dance. The session is $165/child so each class is $16.50/child per class. On the way home, we stop to get birthday gifts for two parties this afternoon. I try to avoid toys since we all have ALL THE THINGS and stick with some sort of art supplies. Our local toy store has an awesome selection and we picked up a slime kit for the 5 year old birthday party and books for the 1 year old twins birthday party (Total $21.76)

My 5 year old heads to her party with a friend — and a friend will also bring her home.

The rest of us head to a family birthday party for our friends’ 1 year old twins. (They made it through the first year — yay!!! In addition to the books I purchased earlier for the boys, we brought a bottle of bubbly for Mommy and Daddy for surviving!)

Then we sprint home to drop the kids off with the babysitter. We lucked out that two of our neighbors have high school daughters that love to babysit our kids on the rare occasion we get out of the house. 😛

Church this evening was a celebration of married couples, with a wonderful blessing by Father before communion. After Mass, there was a small reception with a few appetizers and wine/beer. We enjoyed an hour of conversation with other parishioners and then head home to collapse. (After we paid the babysitter $30 for her services.)

Saturday total — $84.76


I booked the 7 am OrangeTheory class ($11.13) since I didn’t get in my two workouts for the week yet, and head home to take the big girls to church. Today is also hospitality Sunday with means DONUTS after church. (Free)

I then head downtown with a friend for a screening of a documentary. The building offers free parking on the weekends. SCORE!

When I got home, the twins were already napping and the big girls were down the street playing at a friend’s house. I make a quick meal plan and head to the grocery store. Then, I did some pantry shopping before I sat down to meal plan, and I only need a few things to put together meals for the week. (I usually go to the store again mid-week for more fruits and veggies — a family of 6 can’t last a whole week in between trips for fresh stuff.) Total $60.39

Sunday total — $71.52

Weekend total for a family of 6 in a Chicago suburb: $386.55

Memories made — Priceless 😉