Archive | July, 2013

my weekend in pictures: Andros (revisited)

31 Jul

Thanks to the greatest husband alive (in a slightly exaggerated sense) and my mother in law who made it happen, I managed to relax, let myself go, unwind & immensely enjoy the time I had with my sister on Andros last weekend.

I recharged my batteries (it always surprises me how ridiculously fast they manage to die on me once I return to everyday normal life), spend some uninterrupted quality time with my sis, met a few new interesting people & laughed a lot (thanks to my dear friend N. who managed to return to her island just in time for the opening of the exhibition).

Here are some of the pictures I took over the weekend. Enjoy.


sunset while approaching Andros with the ferry


the exhibition poster


my super talented sister Alex with two of her paintings


beautiful Andros


the sisters


enjoying the small things in life (a.k.a. leftover picnic on the balcony)




massive tree


I was very tempted to jump of the cliff, but I am not eleventeen anymore


the return

If you ever have the luxury chance to get the hell away from everyone and everything, even if it is just for a couple of days, DO IT. I promise you it will be A BREATH OF FRESH AIR!

Until next time



shhhhh don’t tell anyone

26 Jul

I am leaving for a two day, much needed desperate getaway with my one and only, precious, big sister Alex!


I know. I actually AM the luckiest gal on the planet! At least for the next 2 days!!!

My super talented sis will participate in a group exhibition on the island of Andros. The lovely people who organized the whole thing, decided to invite the participants and their +1’s to spend the weekend of the opening on the beautiful island.

But you know who the most brilliant of all is? My N.

He made the whole thing possible. I am guessing it had a little bit to do (or a lot) with the fact that I went mental a few times these past 3 weeks, but still…

He is one hell of a guy!

Until next time



how to lose your mind in 10 days

23 Jul

For the past 10 days I have taken care of: 4 children, 3 dogs, 1 husband, 1 baby tortoise, 1 canary and 2 teenagers, a.k.a. my parents (yes, in THAT exact order).

I have survived…

…minus a few brain cells from the burn-outs/meltdowns/drama-queen-like-cries I suffered these past few days. At one point I had to google the first signs of bipolar disorder just to make sure I wasn’t a strong candidate heading towards that direction.

Why would I voluntarily put myself through such an ordeal?

It’s easy, my friends: Sisterly love.

Alex & her eldest were going to be gone for a few days and she asked me to help my mom take care of the remaining family (2 daughters, 2 dogs & the baby tortoise).

Sure, I thought to myself, when she first discussed this with me. I can handle it. No problem.

WHAT THE F#CK was I thinking?

I won’t bore you with the stories that made me seriously consider jumping off the 3rd floor directly into the pool (which is slightly on the right side of the building) at one point or the other.

I will however, share with you, a few of the GREAT moments, because these are the ones that make it ALL worthwhile:


sometimes you just need to PLAY ALONG


or have an imagination like my mom’s


and play out of nothing


when everything else fails, use chocolate


bribe them


don’t forget to take care of them


live in the moment and enjoy the small things in life

Truth be told, it was HARD WORK but I survived. My mom survived. The kids are still in one piece & none of the dogs have gone missing or died. Case closed.

Until next time



the illusion of a self promise

16 Jul


I will go to bed earlier

I will drink more water

I will swim 50 rounds in the pool

I will find some time for myself

I will, I will, I will…

Do you ever fall into the trap of making promises to yourself that you are almost sure you can’t keep? I know I do.

Although I am quite the logical & realist, I fool myself in believing that I can actually follow through. I don’t set the bar too high though. I am not kidding myself by setting unachievable goals (like losing 5 pounds in the next two weeks). My day to day simple goals are not that hard to achieve.


Maybe it is the fact that sometimes the one goal interferes with the completion of the other (no, I don’t mean drinking water from the pool). Let me give you an example.  After what seems to me like an excruciatingly slow morning with the kids, I usually get to a point after lunchtime where I am willing to do anything to get them out of my way (yes, what a splendid & caring mom I am). On the days that my bribing & threatening techniques have actually ‘worked’ and I do get some alone time I prefer doing ANYTHING rather than taking a nap. Although I know that deep down, the only way I will function better is to get the much needed sleep. Am I a psycho? a lunatic? a wacko?

Do you ever fool yourselves with self promises that you know you won’t keep?

Until next time



5 phrases I hate hearing

14 Jul

There is a time and a place for everything but sometimes what the person next to you might say has the power to either MAKE you or BREAK you, especially if you find yourself in a not so happy place.

Here is my top 5 list of things one should avoid saying when confronting me or any other lunatic alike:

  1. THERE IS SO MUCH WORSE OUT THERE. Gee, thank you for pointing this out, as I am a complete self centered idiot that drowns in INSIGNIFICANT SHALLOW PROBLEMS rather than focusing on the good things in my life. I am well aware of the much worse out there and I really DO enjoy my life. However, there are times that even I, with my so called perfect life, get carried away by problems which make me sad or worry. This is not a competition. This is LIFE.
  2. CALM DOWN. Unfortunately I am neither a robot nor a flawless human being. Sometimes I am frustrated and sometimes I need to get it out there. I will calm down eventually but one thing is for sure. Your suggestion to do so doesn’t bring me there faster. A hug or a simple touch is a much better alternative.
  3. I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHY YOU COMPLAIN ABOUT YOUR KIDS. They are so much fun. This is one of my favorites. Leave your job and your old independent life back, have a kid or two, be a stay at home parent and take care of your kid(s) 24/7 and then come back to me and I will have this talk with you. ONLY then.
  4. I TOLD YOU SO. This is probably the one phrase which triggers the time bomb in me to go ka-boom. I am human. I make mistakes. I learn from my mistakes. End of story.
  5. THIS IS FULL OF CHEMICALS AND SOOOO BAD FOR YOU. Enjoy the simple things in life, right? Unless I feed myself gummy bears for breakfast and chips for lunch everyday please keep the I-care-about-you-so-I-feel-the-urge-to-dictate-what-you-consume comment to yourself. I cook and I eat healthy. Occasionally I eat junk. So the f*ck, what?

Kindly excuse my not so zen like post. I am having one of those days.

until next time



one more donald please

8 Jul

Some things are too incredibly and utterly PERFECT to let go.

When Yiannis confused the word doughnut with his favorite cartoon character Donald, while mentioning to his father that he can make the best DONALD in the world on the new game I downloaded for him on my phone (blame me for needing some peace of mind in the last week’s 6 hour car ride), we looked at each other and smiled.

Yes. I know. I tried to. I promise.

Me: Honey…it’s actually D-O-U-G-H-N-U-T, NO L there.

Yiannis: OK, mom. D-O-N-A-L-D.

Me: No, honey. NO L. DOUGH-NUT. NUT. NUT. NUT I actually DID sound like a nut.

Yiannis: OK, OK. I got it.

Me: Say it.

Yiannis: No, I got it. I don’t want to say it (totally being Yiannis)

A few days passed and the whole word was forgotten.

Until today.

We have been living with my sister & the kids under one roof for the last few days and one thing is for sure. Having 2 children is a piece of cake (figure of speech of course). Having 5???? 5 is the magic number. They have the power to transform you into either: a) lunatic, a.k.a wacko or b) a zen version of yourself. Now, my dear friends, how well do you really know me?? a or b??

In a desperate attempt to keep the children from wanting to leave the house and wonder off I bribed them with the promise of baking them some doughnuts. Desperate, I said.

Note to self: Be prepared to bake another batch should you succeed in satisfying their doughnut craving in the first place. Or even better: AVOID STUPID BRIBES ALL IN ALL AND LET THEM WONDER OFF NEXT TIME.

When Yiannis managed to inhale his 4 mini doughnuts in less than 10 seconds he turned to me and literally begged me:

Mom, please, please, please, can you bake us some more DONALLLLLDDDSSSSS tomorrow???

Sorry Donald. This is a keeper.

Until next time




why don’t you have another baby, mom?

4 Jul

A few days ago while I was driving my kids to IKEA and daydreaming of the next two children-free hours (yes, I do leave my kids at the children’s play area and stroll around the store for TWO HOURS ALONE=HEAVEN), I got nostalgic for the days when they were still little.

Mom: Yianni, I found a few pictures of you from when you were two years old and you were soooooooooooooooooo unbelievably cute. You were the sweetest little boy on earth. You even had curls, lots of them (he had these incredible curls which I refused to cut off which often resulted in him mistakenly being called a girl – I left this information out – obviously).

beach 010

Yiannis: Curls?? No….(sort of blushing, extremely proud for the title I had just given him). Mom, I need to see these. Please show them to me when we get home, ok?

Mom: Sure, honey. Look at you now, all grown up. Going into first grade this year. I can’t believe how time has flown (not counting the zillion shitty moments when I pleaded with God to take me through this parenting ordeal as fast & as sane as possible).

Yiannis: What do you mean mom?

Mom: Oh honey, you grow up too fast. One minute your are small and helpless and the next you re off to (ok, not college) big kids school.

Yiannis: I have an idea. Have another baby, mom.


For all intents and purposes I should have probably paused for a while and told my kids in a sweet, calm and loving voice that that probably wouldn’t be such a great idea. Instead in a semi aggressive way I replied: 

Mom: NO, honey. I won’t. 

Yiannis: Why not mom?

Mom: I can’t afford another baby right now. WE can’t afford one right now.

Yiannis: What do you mean mom?

What I really wanted to say: If I had another baby right now I would probably be sent away to the mental institution but then I thought this MIGHT be too harsh for them so I used my grown up and mature voice to give them the logical explanation why we have decided to call it quits with No3.

Mom: You see honey, if we had another baby right now, we would have to do some changes. You would have to change schools. We would have to buy another car, you would have to share everything with him/her. Most importantly I would have less time for you & your sister. Especially in the beginning, babies need their mommy’s attention ALL THE TIME. I would no longer have the time I have for you two anymore. Would you like that?

Yiannis: NO MOM!

Iliana: NO MOM!

You see? Even my kids think it’s a bad idea 😉

Until next time



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