Tuesday, December 16, 2008

random stuff overheard at our house

Mommy:  "What does a duck say, Sydney?"
Sydney:  "qak, qak"

Mommy:  "Good clapping, Sydney!"
Sydney:  "qak, qak" (as her hands clap as quick as she can)

Yes, Sydney's first words are quack and clap, both of which sound exactly like the other.  But Mommy knows exactly what she means!

You know what we are hearing in the middle of the night from baby girl?  SILENCE.  Life is good!

Mommy:  "Samuel, what was the best part of your day today?"
Samuel:  "YOU!"

Mommy:  "Samuel, what was the worst part of your day today?"
Samuel:  "Sydney didn't make me very happy last day" (past tense is almost always "last day" to Sam).  This little guy is having a hard time letting Syd play with toys.  Any toy she has he suddenly wants.

Samuel:  "Mommy, I'm a farmer, and I ride machines, and I plow the fields and put the animals in the barn.  And that's the story of my life."

Mommy (as I'm putting on make-up):  "What are you going to ask Santa for for Christmas?"
Samuel:  "a machine, or make-up!" (hmmm... maybe we won't tell Dad that one).

Samuel (as he pretended to bite me):  "Mommy, I'm a dinosaur and I just bit your bum, and you can no longer go poopy!"

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

1st and 3rd year stats

Just a quick post to document the kids "stats" from their annual Dr. appointments.  Tad came with me to the Dr. and I was SO GRATEFUL.  Normally I go solo to Dr. appointments but since we were taking them both in at once it was a huge help to have 2 parents there.  The 2 kids would not have done well being there from 9 am to 11 am with just me, a small office, and a nurse with a needle.  We all even got our flu shots.  The kids and I got the thimerosal-free one.

Sydney, 1 year
Weight:  18 lbs, 10 oz (7th percentile, but 0% in relation to her height)
Height:  29.75" (75th percentile)
Samuel was the same height at 1 year but weighed 5 lbs more, hard to believe!

No other shots but a flu shot today, which Sydney handled like a champ.  I opt to do the MMR, Chicken Pox, and Hep A when the kids are older due to my own personal beliefs.  Other than that she's up to date on all shots.  

Samuel, 3 years
Weight:  33 lbs, 8 oz (70th percentile, but 85th percentile in relation to his height)
Height:  36.75" (25th percentile)

Samuel did great with the hearing and vision tests.  He could see better than Daddy, even with Dad's glasses on!  No other shots for Samuel besides the flu shot either.  He was all excited to get it.  Ignorance is bliss because afterwards he said, "I didn't like that flu shot Mom!"

Monday, December 8, 2008

Happy First Birthday Sydney!

Well, if you know me on facebook or my parenting message board, you may have already seen this.  But if not, here is a video of pictures to celebrate Sydney's 1st year.  She turned 1 yesterday (12/7).  A letter for her is in the works too!

And here are some birthday pictures.

Opening her present from Mom, Dad and Samuel that morning:
Enjoying her new playhouse!
Chillin' in her party outfit before guests arrived.  
She LOVES this tutu get-up and has been eyeing it for weeks in the closet. 

Picture with the cousins.

Loving her new stroller!

She's a little protective of her new doll and will fight people for it.  LOL!

It's safe to say she enjoyed the party!

Her birthday cupcakes.  Her cupcake is the duck one because she likes ducks.  
Her first word was "quack".  She did not enjoy the cupcake though.  
She put it in her mouth and then started to cry.  I'm not sure she's my daughter.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

a letter to samuel

This is a letter to Samuel in honor of his 3rd birthday.  It's long and I certainly don't expect anyone to read it (though I do hope he'll have the interest some day!).  But I wanted to put it out here to save it.  Warning:  I didn't hold back on my raves about my little guy in this post. :)  There is definitely a lack of modesty here.

You turned 3 this month.  How did that happen?  Though you have never been a big cuddler, I do remember a time rocking you before placing you off to dreamland in your crib.  As we'd rock, you'd look up at me and get a mischievious look on your face while you giggled.  I could rarely rock you to sleep because you just wanted to play!  I should have known then how much fun you would be now; Still today you thrive on interaction with others.  True, you can take a few minutes to warm to a crowd as you hide behind my leg, but by the end of a gathering everyone is amazed that the energetic, fun, and outgoing little boy is the same as the one who arrived.  You sometimes say to us:  "I'm shy" followed by lots of giggles because you recognize the absurdity of that statement.  

I've heard numerous times from others that you are "a very special little boy" and believe me, Mom and Dad know that better than anyone but it's fun to hear.  There is something about you that brings light, joy and hope to others.  Just the other day you brought a tear to Gumpa John's eye because you spontaneously gave him the biggest bear hug you could muster as you said goodbye.  You often accuse me of "Too much hugging!" and you follow it up with, "Don't hug me, I'll hug you!" as you squeeze me tight and say a long drawn-out, "Huuuuuuuuuugggg!".  

Like your Dad, you seem to know just the right thing to say in such a small number of words.  I'll remember forever the first time you said, "You're the best mom in the whole world!".  Turns out Dad is the best Dad in the whole world and Sydney (whom you nick-named Siddy) is the best Siddy in the whole world and even Jenny is the best Jenny in the whole world - and we thank you for that!  You get me all teary-eyed when you say things like, "We're a great family" and "I like spending time with you, family."  

Recently you told me you wanted to buy a gift for Daddy, just because.  So we took money from your own piggy bank and I gave you a choice that we could either go to the local gift shop or we could go to the hardware store.  Boy do you know Daddy because you chose the hardware store.  You walked slowly through every isle, examining everything closely.  After wavering between a bird house, a funnel, and vice grips, you decided Dad really needed a funnel.  Daddy was so pleased at your thoughtfulness; it turned out he did in fact need a funnel!  It's probably no coincidence that you liked the gift too and Daddy lets you use it for bath time.

You have always had an amazing vocabulary and people are often surprised that you are just 3.  You even are starting to use your own slang like "whatever" (I won't always appreciate that one!), and "no problem, Mom".  "Sure" seems to find it's way in most of your sentences, as in "I sure will miss you" and "that sure is a nice dam" (you're into dams and any sort of area with lots of electrical equipment is a dam to you).

We don't have a lot of children in our neighborhood that you know but you are quite fond of our neighbors.  You make regular trips to Dale and Jackie's and Jackie spoils you with cookies and crackers.  You enjoy visiting Bob and giving him a run for his money in the countless questions you ask him as he goes about his work.

You are getting much better at understanding, following, and even enforcing rules.  You once laughed your way through time outs but you now seem to understand why and when we use it.  In fact, you get embarrassed when you are in trouble and put your arm over your eyes thinking we can't see you.  You take it upon yourself to ensure others are following the rules too.  You put me in time out earlier this year for yelling and you have busted us many times for eating in the family room.  You take it upon yourself to be a 3rd parent to Sydney and ensure that she isn't putting anything in her mouth or playing with anything dangerous.  When Mom and Dad once turned their head as Sydney sped up the stairs enjoying her newfound freedom, you promptly came to us with your hands at your hips and declared, "You're daughter is going up the stairs!"

What a wonderful imagination you have.  Throughout the day we get visits from friends that only you can see:  from Tierko and Boo Boo the pigs, Paw Paw the bear and the dancing bunnies with no names.  These poor friends have been tortured by me inadvertently sitting on them from time to time.  I got a good laugh when you told me that the piggies didn't join us at our friend Heidi's house because you were worried her cat might eat them. 

Virtually every day you wear your froggy swim goggles and I enjoy hearing your reasoning why.  Some days you are a fire-fighter and the goggles will protect you from smoke, other days they protect you from the wind outside, and still other days they are simply swim goggles "for swimming Mom!" - duh!  We get comments from many strangers how much they love your "winter hat and swim goggles" look.  You also have a preference for certain clothes but love being naked the most, which we've started discouraging more since it's getting cold.  Still, you find a way to use your imagination to justify your naked-ness.  It seems every time I turn a corner some article of clothing is now off either due to the tag on it bothering you or for some fun reason like "to help you wade in the deep water in our family room", you say.

You conquered day-time potty training this year at the age of 2 1/2.  It went really well, though I'm certain that's what started this naked trend.  You have not yet mastered keeping your diaper dry at night.  Each morning you say, "It's really hard to keep my diaper dry at night" and we assure you it will come in time.  You moved to a big boy bed shortly before turning 2 and we thought you loved it but recently you are telling us otherwise.  We now hear talk about ghosts in your room, the need for all lights on, and how you don't like the top bunk.  Even our nightly story time, kissing bandit kisses, and songs ("This Little Light of Mine", "Twinkle Twinkle", and "Lullaby") do not fend off ghosts anymore.

This has been a big year for you.  You suddenly went from being our baby to being the big brother.  You handled the transition so well and have only had a great love for your little sister Sydney.  The other day you said to her, "You're my best friend Siddy" and it melted my heart.  And boy does she ever love you.  She follows you with her eyes like a hawk and squeels with delight at the mere sound of your voice.  She does whatever she can to keep up with your antics, and you've already taught her how to climb on furniture. 

Your spirit and enthusiasm make life much more fun.  It became obvious to me at the zoo that very few people enjoy life more as you yelled with glee to all the kids "LOOK AT THAT SHARK GUYS!" while the other children sat more reserved.  You have the highest of highs. But I can not very well summarize your year without mentioning that your spark and enthusiasm also help contribute to the lowest of lows.  Your tantrums can rival the best of them and while your persistence will one day serve you well, it tests our patience more than I ever thought possible.  The truth is, whether it be a good day or a bad day, you take an extraordinary amount of energy, but I wouldn't change a thing about you.  I can only hope that our reserved nature will balance, and not stiffle, you.  I'm so proud of the fact that you have so much joy and confidence and I would be surprised if I ever worried about you finding what you want out of life.

We love you very much Samuel.  Thank you for being you.

All our love, 

Mommy & Daddy

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

cool art

I thought this was such a cool idea for art.  What a clever way to get hand prints of everyone in the family and serve as unique art at the same time!  Now, if only those colors of canvas worked well in my house.  I'm sure there is a simple way to make it myself with different colors.  If only I had the time.

By the way, you can purchase this kit at Red Envelope for $39.95.

In unrelated but very important news:  my Mom is getting out of the hospital Friday, exactly 6 weeks after her being admitted.  2 surgeries (open heart surgery to repair many things, and a gallbladder removal), and lots of hard work later she's ready to come home.  New challenges await her and us but I'm excited for her.

I'm hoping things will calm down in my life and I can start blogging again more now that I'll be blogging less on my Mom's Caring Bridge site.  I can't believe I didn't make a post about Sam turning 3 (on November 8)!  What a fun time we had at a local community center water park!  Where did my baby boy go?


P.S. The invitation I designed for Sydney made the Digitreats blog, my favorite spot for Digital scrapping!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

just poppin' in to post a pic

This is what happens when you give an 
almost-3 year old vegetable dip.


PS thanks for the supportive replies to my previous posts!  
Mom has already graduated to the rehab unit!

Monday, October 27, 2008

poor excuse for a baby book

First of all the good news... Mom overcame 9 hours of intense surgery and is recovering well.  She has had a couple set backs:  1 being a stroke and she also seems to be getting pneumonia.  We are of course not pleased about that; however, all things considered I'd say she's doing wonderfully given everything she's had to overcome.  

This has been quite the journey.  I'm really struggling.  I'm finding I'm not meeting all the needs in any aspect of my life:  my kids, work, my Mom, my husband, and me!  I hate to complain because I know there are people out there with a lot more going on (like my Mom overcoming major surgery!) but I just wish I didn't feel like I was treading water just to get through the day.  Thank God for the help of family and friends!  My babysitter has also been in the hospital for 2.5 weeks and my mother-in-law has really helped out a ton (thanks Barb!).  My Dad was here and both of my brothers to help with Mom too so that helped a lot too.  And of course Tad has helped a ton and most of all has been patient with my almost-to-a-breakdown state of mind.

Needless to say, "extra" things like scrap-booking and baby books are pretty much out of the question right now.  Not that I ever had that much time for them.  But that's been one thing great about this blog - it's an easy and fast place for me to document important memories in hopes that I one day get it in a real book.  Now, what are the odds of that happening? :)  So, while I may bore you, I'd like to make note of a few important things I've noticed about the kids recently before they become a blur.

  • Still the funniest and wittiest kid I know.  And I'm not at all biased :)  The things he comes up with just crack me up.  He's into his own space now and tells me "I need privacy Mom" when he goes to use the potty.  So today he's using the potty with the door closed and suddenly I hear him yell, "Mom!  I'm really having a bad hair day!"  What?  I don't ever recall using that phrase with him but certainly he heard it somewhere!
  • He can't wait for Sydney to grow up and wrestle with him.  He already plays too rough with her but that little girl loves it, and so does he.  He's said to me, "Mom, when Sydney's bigger I can jump on her!"  Um, No.  However, this little girl is growing FAST and it wouldn't surprise me if one day she were bigger than him.
  • Samuel is into being a family right now.  He calls out to us, as in, "Come over here with me family!"
  • Suddenly Sam looks bigger to me and more like a little boy.  He promises me he won't grow up too fast, but I'm sure that is a promise hard to keep.
  • As we read stories he interrupts nearly every sentence with, "Excuse me..." and then one of many questions about the picture on that page.  I love that he's so engaged.  Though we are trying to work on asking his questions after I'm done reading the page so that we can actually get through a book!
  • For whatever reason he's not fond of his bed lately and really struggles going down for a nap and bed.  I'm sure it's one of many stall tactics in the many years to come.  But he seems quite scared and I'm not sure why.
  • Samuel will be a fireman for Halloween and he tells me that I should be a pirate.
  • Samuel has been much better behaved lately.  I've heard the "half year" theory in that kids struggle more around the time of their half birthdays and that has held true for us.
  • Sam will be 3 in 1.5 weeks!  Say it isn't so!  We are having his party at the community center water park.  It was a good deal and they provide the cake, balloons, etc. so it was a route I needed to take given everything going on in our lives right now.  I'm not what you'd call an easy-going party-planner!
  • Baby girl is almost 11 months old!  We will have her first birthday party here (I'm hoping by then things will have settled down with my Mom and she'll be well on her way to health!).  We'll have family over and do the first birthday cake deal, etc.  I only hope that I'll have the energy to put into it like I did for Sam.  I made a pretty intricate cake for him and I created a photo montage that she must have as well!  Grandma Barb made her a party outfit that I just can NOT wait for her to wear.  It is to-die-for cute!
  • Sydney has been standing and cruising for a while but I can tell when she's standing she is now giving some thought to trying to walk toward us.  She's not quite ready but it's not far!
  • Syd still likes to be held, a lot.  She'll crawl over to us and pull up on our legs.  It's hard to walk anywhere because she's nearly always attached to a leg!  Poor baby girl - sometimes I find myself veering away from her as I walk by so that she doesn't stick to me like Velcro.  I love her and want to be with her as much as I can but I'm worried I may trip over that little girl one day and let's face it, a mom has lots to do too!
  • Sydney has the cutest way of communicating.  She'll yell out random one-syllable screams of excitement and Sam seems to "talk" to her in the same language.  She is learning to sign and asks for milk all.day.long.  And I believe she would like to nurse all day long if I let her!
  • She loves it when I lie on the floor and she can crawl all over me.  She shrieks with joy when we are down at her level.
  • Her hair is getting longer and it's up for debate if it's strawberry-blond/red, or blond.
  • She's still not a fan of just anyone holding her but it's much better than 4 months ago.
  • I still get the best baby kisses from her.
  • She loves to play with her hair while she drinks from a bottle or nurses.  It's her way of soothing herself.
  • Sydney is still not sleeping well.  It's worse lately.  I'm certain it's because things have been crazy and I've had a harder time dedicating myself to ensure she's eating dinner really early and that we're avoiding dairy.   Yesterday I tried dairy-based (but lactose free) formula with her and what...a...mistake!  So it's quite clear to me that she has a sensitive tummy and her reflux is exacerbated by it.  I really need to make it a priority to watch my diet (since I still nurse), her diet, and the timing of her food because it only makes a stressful day 10x more stressful if she's uncomfortable and mamas not getting her sleep.
 I am blessed with a wonderful family!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

prayers needed

Just days after my Mom's birthday she was admitted to the hospital with severe left heart failure and pulmonary edema.  Your prayers are greatly appreciated.  For further info feel free to visit her CaringBridge page.

I don't plan to be on the blog much these days.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

birthday greetings!


Hope it was a great day and that you are feeling better!

And Happy 10 months to baby girl Sydney!  Where did time go?!


Is an expert crawler (though she doesn't always use her knees, which is hard to explain).

Walks behind a push toy!

Has 5 teeth and 3 more peeking through!

Makes a cute yelling noise to get our attention (I'm sure this will get old fast.)

Likes to be held a lot.  Loves other babies, dolls, and tearing apart Sam's train table.

Is starting to take consistent & longer naps in her crib twice a day (finally!)

Sleeps at night in her car-seat (I'm desperate, people!)

Loves her big brother and laughs at everything he does.

Waves hello and goodbye.

LOVES "big people" food and has yet to turn down anything I've had her try (except for baby food, she doesn't like that).  She's very impatient while I prepare her food.

Greets us home from work by crawling as fast as she can toward us while giggling.

Likes her babysitter.

LOVES music and bounces up and down while clapping to the beat.

Does not like her diaper changed.

Throws herself face down on the ground thrashing her arms and legs if someone takes something from her, and by someone I mean Sam. ;)

Gives the world's best baby kisses.

Likes to climb!  On people, on furniture, on fireplaces... up an ENTIRE flight of stairs!  

Look out world!  This girl has smarts, sweetness and sass in one cute package.

Monday, October 6, 2008

sure to please treats for adults (ahem, I mean kids)...

OK, so this is really a "kids treat" but I've gotten raves from both kids and their parents.  I can't claim the recipe but I've found enough people aren't familiar with it that I thought it was worth passing along here.  I always like to pass along super easy recipes because those are the kind that as a Mom I love the best.

M&M Pretzel Bars

1/4 c. butter
1 - 10 oz. package of marshmallows
1/3 c. creamy peanut butter

Mix in:
2 c. thin pretzel sticks (broken up)
2 c. Chex cereal (I use rice but I'm sure any kind would be fine)
Last mix in 1 1/2 c. M&Ms (choose whatever color combo goes with the season/celebration!)

Press into a greased 9x13 pan.  If recipe is halved, press into a greased 8x8 pan, if recipe is doubled, press into a greased large cookie sheet.

Let set & enjoy!  YUM!

Monday, September 29, 2008

our meal ticket

Thought I'd let you all know that Sydney is a semi-finalist in a photo contest!  While photo contests are certainly not my objective for baby girl, I'm still a proud mama!  We had her 6 month pictures taken at Proex and they automatically enrolled her in their national photo contest.  As a semi-finalist we get a commemorative plaque and her picture will be on display at a local studio (ok, so "meal ticket" was an exaggeration of her prize.  LOL.)  Tad's not a big fan of this picture (way too girly for his taste) but I think it's super cute.  Hopefully she won't be too embarrassed when she's older.  We won't know if she's a finalist until next month.  Good luck Ms. Sydney, win mama that vacation! ;)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

these are a few of his favorite things

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens?  Nope.  Samuel's favorite things are much more unique.  He has a collection of items he must carry everywhere with him and they each have their own reason, as follows:

His neon yellow froggy swim goggles:  "to protect him from smoke" (he's a fireman, don'tchya know?)

His watch:  Warn ON HIS LEG just above his knee is to protect him from "falling in space".  Who doesn't need that?
A toy egg:  This is his spaceship and he refers to it as such.

A large band:  This is kind of a multi-purpose tool.  Today he used it to cover my eyes to protect them from dust when his dump trucks were driving by.

Occasionally some other "things" (as he calls them) fall into the mix:  My cell phone car-charger (it drives me crazy how he has to have that thing all the time!), his fireman hat, toy hammer, toy screwdriver, and his little rubber bunny.

It's a lot of work to keep track of these things near and dear to Samuel's heart and he'd love to take them everywhere.  Luckily I've been able to avoid taking them on errands because I tell him we certainly don't want to lose his things in the store.  That works like a charm!  The swim goggles and the watch pretty much go everywhere with us but I don't mind since he can wear them.

By the way, did you notice the red discoloration on the pics above.  Well, that awesome new camera I was bragging about had to be returned.  And we suspect we may have been sold a "refurbished" one actually.  I look forward to the new one I'm hoping will arrive soon.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

i will not ever brag again

Remember my bragging on baby girl sleeping through the night again?  And remember how I said I was hesitant to say anything because every time I bragged she reverted.  Well, I should have listened to myself.  Sydney is back to waking at night every 2-3 hours.  W..T..H.

Thank goodness this baby girl is C-U-T-E because I see a lot of her, day and night! :)

Anyway, I'm back to reconsidering the extra testing regarding her reflux that the doctor recommended since my feeding plans don't seem to be helping much.  I'm also starting a food diary.  But in the end, my gut tells me this is something she is just going to have to outgrow in time.  *sigh*

Friday, September 26, 2008

yeah! vbac success!

Recently I told you I was posting VBAC info for a friend who was about to try it.  WELL, just 2 days later she had her healthy baby and she had a successful VBAC!  YEAH!  Congrats Phaedra and welcome to the world Scarlett!


Sunday, September 21, 2008

everyone needs a magic green button

The other day I was singing when Sam blurted out, "STOP!".  I proceeded to sing when suddenly I see him point his index finger quickly in the air as if pushing something.  He then yells out, "STOP!  I pushed the green button!  STOP!"

Apparently the "green button" is the mute button for Mommy.  My boy is already muting Mom.  So sad.

But this button does more than you could ever imagine.  

I've since seen him use it to "turn you back into a human!" (I'm not sure what I was before Sam turned me back but thank God he helped me out).

I've seen him push the button to "blast off into space" (chasing after his imaginary pig friends by the way - who I've been told live on "red planet" with him).  Before Sam "blasts off" he has started saying to me, "I'm sorry I can't stay here with you Mommy.  But I have to go into space.  I'm sorry, Mommy."  I tell him I'll miss him if he leaves and he's kind enough to invite me along.

And, I've seen him turn to the button to stop things he doesn't like.  

Which got me thinking, where can I find me one of these magic green buttons?????! 

Saturday, September 20, 2008

sometimes dad knows best too

Well, I'm a bit hesitant to post this because I've jinxed myself before.  But we have so far had 4 nights of Sydney sleeping through the night!  I've gone 3 months with her waking 2-5x/night and me averaging 4 hours of sleep a night.  I had glimmers of hope along the way with little fixes here and there.  Each "fix" I'd post about all happy that my sleeper was about to return...not.so.much.  But now...now... she's sleeping 7:30pm - 5am.  I call that SUCCESS.  Yes, 5am is early.  But I'll take it!

So, how did it happen?  Some great insight on my part maybe?  No.  Daddy dearest had the key to success.

Tad commented that he noticed Sydney seemed to do better the later she went to bed.  I never made this correlation.  Heck, I've been too tired to notice when I need to brush my own hair.  Anyway, I wasn't convinced this insight meant she needed a later bed time because she is always rubbin' her eyes before I finally get her down.  So I started thinking and I began to wonder if maybe the later bed time was doing the trick only because it gave her more time to digest her dinner and thus causing less aggravation for her reflux.  So I decided to start feeding her dinner early at 4:30 pm, 3 hours before bed time.  Guess what, THAT NIGHT she started sleeping through the night!  HALLELUJAH!  

While it stinks she has to eat so early and later watch us while we eat dinner as a family at 6, I'm happy we have a key to help her sleep.  I'm also happy to know I finally have an understanding of her problem.  I should have suspected that this was entirely food related because our problems began when she started solids at 6 mo.  But she also started teething at that time so I just wasn't sure.  And then I started to wonder if we had a habit on our hands.  And then I got REALLY tired, making it impossible for me to really evaluate the situation well at all.  Poor baby girl has been given many doses of motrin in hopes that she'd sleep through the night in case it was her teeth bothering her.  Well, her doctor informed me last week that motrin has been known to aggravate reflux.  Lovely.  I can't believe how long it took me to figure this situation out and here I only made it worse along the way.  I suppose hindsight is always 20/20.

The great news is the Doctor ok'd the cancellation of some additional testing he ordered for Sydney.  He feels that this is a good solution to her problems and hopefully she'll outgrow the reflux and not always have to suck on teethers and avoid dairy while we indulge in front of her.

Friday, September 19, 2008

VBAC support

The following is not meant to replace the advice from your medical doctor. :)

For anyone who doesn't know, a VBAC is a "Vaginal Birth after Cesarean".  I had a cesarean with Samuel due to fetal distress.  I had hoped for a VBAC with Sydney but unfortunately she was showing signs of distress before birth so my Dr., and the second Dr. whom I sought an opinion from, both highly recommended a repeat c-section the next morning.  They said they'd allow for labor if it occurred naturally by the next morning but if it wouldn't they felt a c-section was required to get baby girl out quickly and ensure she continued to thrive (they didn't see induction as an option for me due to increased chance of uterine rupture given the fact that I had a previous cesarean, and I agreed with them).

Anyway, a friend of mine is about to attempt a VBAC and I promised her I'd put up some great information that was sent to me by a local hospital.  This information supports VBACS, something that can be hard to find these days in our lawsuit-happy world.  

I believe that doctors and patients need to make it a priority to attempt the most natural birth possible, including VBAC attempts (provided both mother and baby are healthy).  (When I say natural, that doesn't mean I'm opposed to some help with the pain along the way ladies!  Though I admire anyone who does a medication-free delivery and I do see that as an ideal birth plan.).  Baby and Mom experience many physical benefits from a vaginal birth that I think are often overlooked.  Likewise, I think risks to cesarean (which is a major surgery), and the recovery effort from them, are often underestimated.  There are risks to cesareans too.  I had a friend who contracted an infection from her c-section and was in and out of the hospital for 3 months and was not able to care for her newborn baby.  I have another friend who had to have a transfusion after delivery.  And while my c-sections didn't have any complications, my second section was very difficult for me to recover from and my incision kept showing signs of the beginnings of potential opening (though luckily I was able to mitigate with some intense rest).

I do want to make it clear that I'm thankful the Doctors were able to help ensure I delivered 2 healthy babies, regardless of their route to the world and I do believe most often c-sections are warranted.  In the end, the goal of any birth plan should be the health of mom and baby.  My point is that for women who have had a cesarean, I want them to know that the 2nd time around they do have a choice.  They can choose VBAC.  Yes, there are risks to VBACs, and yes this risk has a small potential to be catastrophic.  However, their are catastrophic risks to any birth and the increase in catastrophic risk from VBAC is quite small.  Mostly I want people to be aware that there are risks to c-section too.  Whether you choose a repeat-C (which I also support as long as it's what the mother and her doctor feel is best for her and baby), or a VBAC, the point is:  Get informed.  Do your research.  Their are risks to both and you need to weigh the pros and cons against your own situation and beliefs.

For the power point on benefits/risks of VBACs click here.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

it's getting crowded here

We have some visitors at home and it sure is getting crowded.  And the problem is, the only one who can see them is Sam.  Lately I'm hearing all about little pigs named Geryl, Boo Boo, Po Po and Tierko (yes, Tierko.  I have no idea where he comes up with these names).  I also hear about a big bear named Paw Paw and a little bear named Po Po (yes, we have both a bear and a pig here named Po Po - popular name I guess).  And we also have bunnies, though I'm not sure of their names yet.

Sam speaks of these animals as if they are right next to him engaging with him all day.  For instance, yesterday he broke out in a dance and when I asked what he was doing he said, "I'm dancing with the bunnies!"  I asked him who was the best dancer and he said Paw Paw the bear.  So then I said, "What about the pigs, are they dancing with you too?"  And that's when he told me pigs aren't good dancers.  Good to know.

Little piggies Geryl and Boo Boo hang out with Sam the most and have become a bit of a problem for me because apparently I'm always setting things on top of them (they are very little I'm told) or worse, I inadvertently sit on them!  Luckily Sam is pretty patient with my accidental cruelty; though he's quick to point out when I do it.

Every night before bed we now have to build a gate out of pillows to corral all of his new friends so that they stay in bed with him.  As far as I know, no animals have escaped yet so we must have been successful.

Sam assures me these are all nice friends.  Though occasionally he tells me there is a ghost here and it is not nice.  I try to rush through that conversation because it freaks me out.

In case it isn't already obvious what a crazy imagination this little guy has, I'll tell you one other funny story.  The other day I asked him not to jump on the bed.  In typical Sam fashion he responded as follows:  "Actually, I wasn't jumping on the bed.  I was a rocket and I blasted off!  And fire came out of my bum!  See!  Here I go again, BLAST OFF!"

Sunday, September 7, 2008

the great syd update

Sydney is 9 months today! It's time to do a little bragging over baby girl!

She may not be a great night sleeper but she still sleeps "on the go" really well. Good news, she's starting to take better naps at home lately too.

A woman of the cloth. Yup, she wears cloth diapers. Yup, I wash cloth diapers. And YUP, Tad changes cloth diapers. She has VERY sensitive skin so I was hoping this would help. I'm not certain it's helping the sensitive skin like I had hoped, but I do feel good about the 6,000 diapers I won't throw away and the $1500 I'll save. Besides, doesn't she look CUTE?
Her first virus, complete with rash and all. Poor kiddo.

She discovered she loves our Jenny dog.

Ms. Independent skipped baby food and went right to finger food at 8 months. Here I thought she didn't like food. Turns out she just didn't want me feeding her! She's doing great with a sippy cup too.
Still nursing full time (though I have had Tad give her formula a couple times during the middle of the night to give myself a break). I have to pump at work but that's going well.

Sydney is SUCH a happy girl. When she's with Mom , Dad and Sam, she's all smiles and brings serious joy to us all with her big slobbery baby kisses.
Started crawling at 7.5 months

And is pulling to a stand too (8 months)!
And is even trying to use her walking toy (look out world!)
This girl loves her fashion. She's infatuated with shoes (I'm a proud mama!)
And she knows how to show off for the camera.
She still LOVES the Baby Bjorn (any time when Mom is holding her is a great thing)
Now that she's on the move she's discovered Sam's toys, which makes her VERY happy and makes Sam not so happy. She also chases us down to tackle us with her big kisses or to insist on being held as she crawls up your leg.
She's teething like crazy. She has 4 teeth and at least 3 more ready to pop any time. Poor girl!

We're still working on getting sleep around here as I feel like I'm as close to seriously sleep deprived as I hope I will ever have to experience. Never a good sign when you fall asleep in a parking ramp (with the car off thankfully!). The "wrap" that keeps her inclined in her crib, as well as new medication, seems to have helped improve her sleep, though we still have quite a ways to go. I'm hoping sleep will return after these teeth that have been trying to surface come.

We went to a specialist (pediatric gastroenterologist) for her blood in her stools and her reflux and I feel that we have a great game plan ahead of us. Luckily, the doctor is not concerned about the blood at this point.

Her separation anxiety has improved dramatically and she's doing great with the nanny. Coming home from work is the greatest because she starts bouncing up and down. She just learned to clap too!

Thanks for your interest! We love our sweet baby girl. Time is going entirely too fast yet I'm excited for her on all the fun things ahead.


Saturday, September 6, 2008

speaking of birthdays...

...we went to an annual birthday party for my friend's son Jake and his cousins.  Jake's grandparents put this on every year for their grandchildren.  To call it a birthday party is an understatement.  It's really the carnival of the year.  All gifts go to charity.  

I've told Samuel it's a "summer party".  I don't want to give him any ideas of what his birthday party should be.  On second thought, maybe I should have told him that the "summer party" was for his birthday!  LOL!  Borrow a party - now there is a concept!  We recently went to another friend's house and Sam asked if a pony would be there - no Samuel, we don't get pony rides at all parties!  LOL!

Happy Birthday Jake!

The big blow-up slide.  This was Sam's favorite!

The magic show
Sam happy as a clam slurping his icee & eating his popcorn during the show
1 of 3 moon-walks (& the other ones were HUGE!)
Pony rides!
The blow-up water-slide.  Also the site where a little girl fell on the ground and sprayed mud ALL OVER ME - everywhere.
A petting zoo!  Yes, that's a llama in their front yard!
A karate demonstration
Sydney with good friends M & L!

Not pictured:  A kid's band, popcorn stand, BBQ, cotton candy, dunk tank, water balloon game, and more I'm sure!!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

another year older

Happy Labor Day!

Since I'm behind in blogs I'll fill you in on past events ;)  Friday was my birthday.  It also happened to be Michael Jackson's birthday, a fact I used to be proud of way back when.  Now, not so much.  But I mention it today anyway because I can't believe he turned 50!  Which got me thinking... I'm 16 years shy of 50!  For some reason 34 sounds perfectly fine but 16 years from 50 doesn't.  Probably because I know just how fast 16 years can fly.  After all, it was 16 years ago I graduated from high school, and where did that time go?  I guess I'm smack dab in the middle of high school graduation and 50.  I sure hope the next 16 years don't fly as fast and I sure hope I do my best to take deep breaths and take everything wonderful about it in as I go.  And once I get there, to 50 that is, a whole new adventure will be waiting for me.  Sam will be graduating high school, Sydney will be getting her drivers license and dating (oh wait, no dating until 30).  Scary thoughts for sure, so I'll stick to living in the present and enjoying Samuel's big imagination (today he's a space man) and Sydney's slobbery baby kisses.

Grandma Sue (my Mom), the kids and I went to the state fair on my birthday.  Something I haven't done for about, well, 16 years!  Our state fair is arguably one of the best.  A good time was had by all but I think I'll be ok if it's another 16 years before I go.  Maybe I'll make it a once a decade event.  

The evening of my birthday was very nice, complete with a steak meal and super yummy chocolate cake courtesy of Tad.  And then...THE GIFT...  holy cow I am not worthy of this gift (but I will gladly accept it!).  I'm going to do my darndest to learn how to use this because it sure would be a shame to have such a nice gift wasted on people like me with no talent.

I really wanted to upload shots of the kids but I've been having a terrible time uploading pics to blogger recently, which is part of the reason I haven't blogged much. :(  I MUST get this figured out so that I can upload pics once my new camera comes in the mail!!!


Friday, August 22, 2008

shhhh... do you hear that?

No?  Neither do I!  Yup, BOTH kids are asleep - AT. THE. SAME. TIME.  Hallelujah!  And even bigger news:  Syd put herself to sleep TWICE today.  TWICE!  She hasn't done that in months.

So that's the good news.  The bad news is that preparation for nap was quite the event.  The following occurred while Sam was supposed to be falling fast asleep to dreamland:

A boy in just his pull up (I let him be).

Later... a naked boy with swim goggles on his head (I take away the goggles, put a pull up on him, and don't bother with the clothes).

Even later... a naked boy (where'd that pull up go again??) who snuck past me while I was putting syd to bed & I later found him by our basement door curled up on the floor asleep.  WTH?  Let me tell you my heart was racing while I couldn't find him!  So I pick him up and put him back in bed naked (screw the diaper... I'll hope for a dry nap).

Then, I hear crying coming from Sydney's room.  I look in the video monitor but the camera must have fallen.  I quickly realize Sam must be behind this.  I run upstairs and find:

A naked boy curled up in Sydney's crib.  Apparently she didn't want to be cuddled.

And finally, after one more return to bed, and some rocking for Sydney, both kids are now asleep.

It's much easier going to work.  LOL.


P.S.  I'm worried about Sam's disappearing tricks.  This is the third time this week he's snuck into other rooms without me hearing him only to have me find him curled up somewhere random.  I'm going to have to put a gate on his bedroom.  The gate won't stop him, he climbs it.  But hopefully I'll be able to hear his mischief more before I find the kid outside one day!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

the more things change, the more they stay the same

I returned to the workforce this week (part-time).  I vowed not to blog about work but since I just started, I thought I'd update you on some of the highlights.

Same Company I worked for 9 months ago before having Sydney.

Same hiring manager.

Different job responsibilities.

Less Stress.

New learning opportunities.

Same commute route.

Way more traffic.

Same desk.

New cube-mate.

Same difficulty getting to work on time.

New bigger vending machines (with only 20 oz pop) - just what I need.

Same security guy.

New security badge with a new ugly picture of me.

Same awesome new-mom benefits like a Mother's pumping room with hospital-grade pumps.

Same computer system.

New rules including no access to blogger or message boards (*sniff*sniff*).

New parking ramp (that cost me $20 today - doh!) - I will promptly return to the old ramp, which costs $10/day. *sigh*

Same kids.

Mom has new appreciation for kids.

Same Mom.

Kids have new appreciation for mom.

Overall so far this seems to be a very good thing for us.  There have been some "glitches" and I'm exhausted.  BUT, I think it's going to be a good thing.  The nanny is doing well getting up to speed.  I feel rejuvenated getting a change of pace in our week.  And what I didn't realize would be a benefit is that I think the kids are rejuvenated by the change-up too.  The last 2 nights Sam has been extraordinarily well behaved.  I think maybe he appreciates me more in smaller doses.  LOL.  So rather than spending an entire day disciplining him (which is no fun for either of us), he spent the day with the nanny (she reported good behavior) and a few hours of QUALITY time with mom that consisted of very little discipline (it just wasn't needed!)!  Tonight we ate dinner as a family, played outside, ate dessert outside, visited 2 neighbors, and read stories - all before bed.  I don't recall having that much fun in such a short time in a long while.  And great news, Sydney is doing well too, staying relatively happy and she's taking the bottle - YEAH!

P.S.  The sleep wrap seems to be helping Sydney.  Maybe it's coincidence but she's now taking MUCH longer naps (think 20 minutes before to 2 hours now) and sleeping longer periods at night.  One of these days she might sleep through the night again!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

return of the reflux

You may have noticed that I've been MIA these days.  Bottom line is:  I'm exhausted.  Utterly, totally, and completely.  It seems all heck is breaking loose in this household over the last 2 months.  I've been busy planning a return to the work-force and interviewing child-care candidates.  Meanwhile, Samuel is giving me a run for my money where it seems disciplining him is a full time job and then some.  And Sydney, well, she has 4 teeth coming in and her reflux has been kicking it in high-gear.  Until the last few days, she's been sleeping less than when she was a newborn!  Anyone who knows me really well knows that I require A LOT of sleep.  I mean, a lot.  10 hours would be ideal.  I know, I know, who gets 10 hours sleep unless you are a teenager?  Well, I'll settle for 7.  But I'm getting about 4 - and it's interrupted sleep at that.  At a time where Sam needs me on my toes the most I'm lucky if I can get out of bed.

Back to the reflux... Sydney no longer physically "spits up" like she used to. But I know the reflux is still an issue because she has sharp cries of pain that is much different than simply a baby needing attention. She also clears her throat, has an occasional horse voice, and is often congested - all signs of reflux. You don't have to "spit up" to have a problem with reflux.  What's referred to as "silent reflux" can be a problem too.  But reflux doesn't even have to be a problem.  Almost ALL babies have reflux. It becomes a problem if it's either causing pain or if it's causing a failure to thrive. Sydney is NOT failing to thrive by any means. In fact, she eats more when her reflux is bothering her (out of comfort). But she is clearly in pain, and it's affecting her sleep a great deal.  So it's a problem.

It's been difficult to talk to too many people about what we are going through with Sydney's reflux. I think people assume my concern is that she "spits up", but that is far from the case. I could care less if she pukes over everything I own. I just hate to see her in pain. It doesn't help that apparently reflux is a common diagnosis these days so when you say your baby has reflux I think people aren't sure if you mean your baby spits up (duh, all babies do), your baby is in pain, or your baby is failing to thrive. It seems reflux is the new colic.  Many babies that were once described as being colicky are now better understood to have reflux.  

To help control the reflux, Sydney does best when sleeping at an angle.  But since she's such a mover and a shaker, she rolls down the bed. Therefore, I've invested in the following sleep wrap designed to hold her in place while the bed is at an angle, based on a recommendation from my friend Jennifer W.  So far I think it's making a real positive difference.  I don't really like the fact that having the mattress upright at an angle causes her neck to kink to the side, but her chiropractor didn't seem concerned.  Yes, my daughter has a chiropractor.  I'm willing to try it all to get more sleep.

We've also moved on to a more aggressive medication and I'm more serious about eliminating dairy from my diet (I'm still nursing). Often reflux is aggravated (though not caused) by sensitivities; both Sydney's doctor and I believe she has a sensitivity to milk-products.  Occasionally she has blood in her stools, further evidence of allergies.

All in all, I'm starting to "see the light", which is why I can hop back into blog land.  We're not yet back to sleeping through the night, but we're doing much better.  I feel the reflux is more under control now.  I'm not sure if it's the sleep wrap, the new meds, my diet, the chiropractor, or her age that is helping, but I guess I'll continue with our current plan because something is working.  Now, if I could only do something about these 4 teeth coming in for poor baby girl!


P.S.  turns out you can save a good chunk of cash and make a sleep wrap.  Why didn't I think of that???

Thursday, August 7, 2008

there's a new sheriff in town

And his name is Samuel.

Sometimes I've wondered if our 2.5 year old Sam doesn't understand the concept of rules because he breaks them all the time.  There are certain rules he breaks so often in fact that we have to run through a list of reminders before play dates.  It goes something like this:

"Sam, we're going to play with Tyler today.  Won't that be fun!  Can you play nice with Tyler today?"


"Remind me what playing nice means.  What are some of the rules?"

Sam runs off the list:  "No hitting, no biting, no kicking, no pushing, no pinching."

"Right!"  And then I add, "And we share too, right?"

To which Sam says, "It's hard for me Mom."

"I know it is.  But you're such a good kid you can do it.  Try really hard, ok!"

Often he still breaks a rule or two even after our "pre-game pep talk" (or three or four or five broken rules on more challenging days).  But there is no denying he knows what a rule is as these days HE'S the one giving US the rules.  Here are some rules that have been turned around on us the past few days:

"Take your hat off at the dinner table Mom.

Grandpa Bruce didn't pick his bed up.  Maybe he should do that when he comes back.  (You were busted Grandpa Bruce for not picking your blankets up before you left.  LOL.)

Don't talk mean Mom.  We don't talk like that to family.  You go to time out Mom."  (for the record, I wasn't really talking mean, but I was being stern - handing out more rules I suppose) 

Yes, this new sheriff comes armed with time-outs and all.  So watch out and mind your Ps and Qs when he's around!



Tuesday, August 5, 2008

because charlene asked

I've been MIA.  More on that later.

For now, I'll leave you with this...

Hey Char!  Glad to see you visited my comments and thanks to your question I'm going to post about my all time favorite toddler toy:  The Imaginarium Train Station.  Yes, it's pricey at $150 (I bought it for $120 on sale, but before tax) and yes it can be an eyesore in our family room (what toy isn't?); but it's by far our most used toy.

I'd post pics of Sam at the table but I'm having trouble uploading pics to blogger today!

Anyway, what do I love about it?
  • It's at the right level for toddlers.
  • Both the table and train set that it comes with are great in my opinion.
  • It makes noises as the train goes through tunnels and over bridges.
  • It's a high quality set at the best price I've seen compared to similar sets.
  • "Thomas the Tank" trains designed for the Thomas set of this size also fit on this set!
  • It has 2 great drawers to store extra trains, another track set - whatever you wish!
  • It's a great toy for multiple children to play with and offers less sharing disputes.
What do I not love about it?
  • I do not recommend it for kids under 2.  When Sam was younger than 2 he just wanted to destroy the tracks.  Now that Sam is older he rarely takes the set apart (once every 2 months?)
  • When Sam does take it apart, it is a pain to put the tracks back together in the right order - we almost always have to consult the directions.  At one point we had thought about screwing the tracks to the table but I wanted to have the option to replace with other sets, though I have yet to buy another set and doubt I ever will.
  • The set comes with one battery operated engine.  Well, that "little engine that could" is the "little engine that couldn't".  It has such a hard time going up one of the hills.  We don't mind though, Sam is always talking about helping it up the hill.  And frankly usually we have that train without batteries anyway because they always run out.
  • The drawer sometimes sticks on the table platform, making it a bit tricky to close all the way.
P.S.  Toys 'R Us is not paying me to recommend this train set.  LOL.  And for what it's worth, I'm not being paid by Amazon to recommend products I've mentioned in the past of theirs either.  Should a ton of people buy from amazon via my links I could eventually get a small kick-back but I don't expect that will happen.  It's not a goal of mine and the incentive is small, very small. ;)  The short of it is, I blog about products that I believe in.

Thursday, July 31, 2008


Some days I feel that our home is over-run by toys.  Yet it seems we don't have nearly as many toys as many other kids I know.  But every where I look I see "stuff".  I'm reminded just how many toys the kids have when my Step-Dad tells stories of the kinds of things he and his brother played with as kids and how they used their ingenuity to come up with fun ideas (they also used their ingenuity to find trouble too but we won't go there).  Anyway, I digress... somehow that "stuff" just makes me feel so full and greedy.  I want to raise an appreciative boy, and I want him to enjoy these generous gifts he was given by us and many other family and friends.  So I decided to box Samuel and Sydney's toys up in rubbermaid containers and rotate them each week.  I'm hoping Sam will appreciate his toys more this way and that the toys will continue to feel new to both of them.  I also like the fact that our living room and Sam's bedroom is now a little less cluttered.

But even what seem like good ideas can have some glitches along the way, right?  Well, when Sam came down this morning to see a good chunk of his toys were missing he said, "Did I throw those toys Mommy?  Did you take them away?  Did you give them to another boy that will like them?"  The poor kid thought I shipped all of his toys off to another little boy!   You see, we have a rule here that anytime a toy is thrown, it's taken away for the day.  So that explains why he thinks I took the toys away, but you may wonder why he thinks another little boy has them.  Well, I admit it, I once told him in the heat of the moment after he had been throwing trains Sydney's direction that maybe we should give the train set to a boy that would take nice care of it.  So I tried to tell him that no, I did not send his toys to another little boy, and I tried to explain the rotation concept but I think until he sees those toys back on that living room floor he's going to think they are in some other little boy's room.  Poor little guy!  Why must he remember EVERYTHING I've ever said!

congress is listening!

For anyone who isn't a regular safemama reader, I thought it was worth passing along this great news they posted yesterday!


Yesterday, Congress voted on the Children’s Safe Products Act which approved a nationwide ban on phthalates in products intended for children under 12. We’ve been waiting for this so we’re happy to say goodbye tophthalates DEHP, DBP and BBP… three chemicals used to soften plastics in children’s toys like bath squirties, soft books and “rubber” ducks. The Act is part of a final Bill to reform and improve the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). This is obviously good news and further confirmation that there is enough doubt in their safety as well as demand for strict regulations on children’s products. And don’t think you didn’t have anything to do with it. Members and supporters of MomsRising.org alone sent in over 100,000 letters to congressman urging them to support the Act.


This ban will take effect in 6 months so in the meantime be on the lookout for products loaded with phthalates.  I know I've started loving more "natural" toys to avoid plastic all together.  I've enjoyed sites such as Inspired Play and Natural Pod (a Canadian store).  Don't get me wrong, we still have plenty of plastic toys that I have no intention of throwing out, but I am trying to get smarter especially about the toys that Sydney is likely to put in her mouth.

In other news, I was happy to see that Safemama published their safer bug repellent report.  Turns out the brand I was already using (Burt's Bees) is one of their favs.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

i guess streaking runs in the family

I decided we needed a day out.  Both the kids and I tend to have a better day if we go do something away from our home.  So we went to the zoo even though it was one of the most humid days of the year.  Luckily the zoo has a new grizzly bear exhibit all decked out with gushing geysers for the kids to run through and cool off.  As Sam and I head to the new exhibit I became slightly distracted as an old friend I hadn't talked to in forever called so I wanted to at least pick up.  As I'm talking I begin to notice a few "looks" (you know, the look from other disapproving parents who would never let THEIR kid do what you let your kid do... wait, maybe I'm the only one that gets those looks).  So I promptly look down at Samuel to find his pants and underwear are around his ankles!  He was so excited to run in the water he decided he better get undressed.  I quickly end my call and got him in his swimsuit, luckily without a fight.

All in all it was a successful trip, despite a melt-down because Sam didn't want to leave.  But little did I know that our streaking for the day was not yet over.  And you can bet your life I would never have guessed I'd be the offender.  And since I guess I don't mind humiliating myself, I'll tell the story.

This afternoon I was nursing Sydney when I got a knock on the door... I'm sure you can see where this is going... Since we NEVER get random knocks and since I knew my neighbor was missing her dog I thought I better answer it.  So I lift Sydney up, cover myself up, and go answer the door.  It was a nice neighbor woman with 4 children she cares for.  We talk for a minute (I learn the dog was found!) when suddenly I feel a cool breeze.  I look down and apparently I had not fully covered myself up like I had thought, exposing my left breast!  Upon realizing my faux pas my face became beat red and I told her how utterly (no pun intended) embarrassed I was.  Luckily she nursed her own children and she was cool about it.  But THOSE POOR POOR CHILDREN.  Gawd I hope I didn't scar them for life.

I have a feeling we won't be getting any more knocks from neighbors.  I'm sure it's only a matter of a day or two before everyone around here knows.  It's really a shame because I was just starting to make friends here!

Monday, July 28, 2008

overheard at my house

I yell from the living room to Sam in the bathroom, "Whatchya doin' Sam?"

"Painting with my potty."

Suddenly, I hear the pitter patter of little feet run from the bathroom to the family room and see a wet trail of footprints behind my little streaker.  Sure enough, he "missed" during his potty break and decided to use his feet to paint with his potty.  *sigh*

Time to go clean the bathroom floor for the 3rd time this week.


Sunday, July 27, 2008

update on my baby bears

This blog has evolved a bit for me.  It started as a place for me to save all my favorite resources.  But I've quickly realized it also serves as an easy place to document history for our photo albums.  I figure bragging about the kids falls under the category of "all things mom" so why not.

Last night Sam turned to me and said, "We a great family."  Awwwwwwe!

Lately whenever you ask Sam a question he says, "uhhhhhhh
hhhhhh" while he thinks before he answers.  He must have picked that up from me since I'm always forgetting words when I talk!

He is also putting "so" in front of sentences, as in, "So where we goin' Mommy?"

The other day he put a ball under his shirt and said, "Be
 careful Mommy, there is a baby in my belly.  Remember when Sydney was in my belly?"  Funny, that's not how I remember those 9 months at all.

And whenever anyone is hurt, sad, etc. he comes to the rescue, as in:  "Don't worry Mommy, I will always take care of Sydney."  Or, "I will help you feel better, Mom.  Here's my blanky and pillow.  Now you feel better."

He likes to pretend he's a fireman lately.  He puts his hat on backward so it looks more like a fireman's hat and then he puts on his rain-boots:  Voila, a fireman, all his own idea.  Even if it's 90+ degrees outside, he insists on wearing his fireman boots.
I'm so proud of Sam, he was so fearless at the waterpark we went to last week.  He was swimming like a fish, head getting wet and everything.  At 2 1/2 he even went on very big slides all by himself (this is him below coming down the green slide, which started toward the top of the indoor park's high ceiling and wound it's way to the bottom where Tad was waiting for him).

In Sydney news... she's not a big fan of food.  Is she really my child?  She'll take a few bites and then she's bored with it.  I'm slightly concerned actually but I know that nutritionally she's getting everything she needs via breast-milk and her daily vitamin.

Sydney is also "crawling".  It's her own version though.  She uses her back 2 legs and her head to scoot forward.  I imagine she'll be doing traditional crawling very shortly.  My little girl is growing up so quickly!
Sydney is such a happy girl, she truly brightens our day and adds so much to our family.  And she remains this happy even on low sleep.  She gets less sleep than Sam!  Until 2 months ago she consistently slept through the night.  For whatever reason, those days are over.  I've recently learned that her Great-grandfather, also named Sydney, slept very little.  So maybe we should have went with a different name.  She's "talking" up a storm too.  Lots of "da da da da" and cute little breaths along with it so of course Tad thinks her first word is Dad.  It was for Sam too, though I'm not convinced Syd yet knows what "da da" means. ;)

Friday, July 25, 2008

i'm so NOT hot

You may have noticed I've been absent.  Sam, Sydney and I accompanied Tad on a business trip and made a stop at a water park!  Talk about heaven for Samuel!  Pictures and details on that to come.

For now I'll share a funny story that happened the morning of our departure.

I was driving on a road I rarely drive coming home from dropping our dog off at the kennel, which by the way is more like doggie paradise than kennel club.  Suddenly I notice this guy checking me out.  But he was more than checking me out.  He was watching my car's every move.  Now, normally I'm a VERY modest person in my opinion.  But I must have been in a good mood excited for our trip and feeling extra confident that day as I thought to myself:  "Damn, I'm good.  I can turn a head today with 2 kids in the back seat!"... and then... I see the flashing lights through my rear view mirror.  A cop.  Turns out I'm not all that hot and that guy was simply watching a ditzy lady not notice a cop trying to pull her over.

All is well that ends well though... I guess I was at least looking good enough to just get off on a warning.  And for what it's worth, I was being honest when I told the police officer I thought the speed limit was 40 (I guess it was 30.  oops!).

And shhhh... don't tell Tad.  He doesn't know this story. :)  But Samuel knows I got pulled over so it's only a matter of time before everyone else does too so I might as well let my family and friends get a good laugh out of it.  Tad will get a good laugh too, and then promptly tell me to drive more carefully!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

getting organized

I have so many things on my "to-do" list but yet I seem to struggle just keeping up with daily life. I thought staying home with the kids would also give me an opportunity to do all the projects I've been putting off (scrapbooking, finishing the decorating touches on Sydney's room, touch up painting, etc.).  Yet my day is plenty busy getting kids clothed, fed, napped, fed, exercised and mentally stimulated (if I'm lucky), napped, fed, bathed, and to bed.  And of course they rarely sleep at the same time so there is no such thing as a lunch break for mama!  

Today I did manage to check one minor thing off the to-do list while Tad kept Samuel entertained swimming in the lake.  Boy was I jealous of their fun, but if felt good to get something done.  

It seems I consistently forget things at the grocery store.  So I decided to do what perhaps many others already do:  I created a standing grocery list of items our family buys.  The food is listed in order of location in my grocery store, which I'm hoping will help save me time on my trip.  I have a comments section next to each item for further clarification if needed.  I found many grocery checklists on the web but since they listed off practically everything a grocery store sells they were 4+ pages long.  This list is 2 pages long (1 page if you print front and back).  Here is a screenshot of a portion of the list.
I plan to put this list on my fridge and check things off as I notice they are needed.  If I want to get really crazy, I'll highlight any items for which I have a coupon.  :)  

I used this on my shopping trip tonight and I didn't forget one single thing!  The only problem:  I spent $50 more than usual (though I did stock up on items we typically are not out of).  But I saved gas money as I think I avoided the repeat trips I typically have to make for forgotten items.

Here is a link to download it if anyone is interested; You could customize the excel doc to include items you frequently buy.  I apologize as some of the check boxes are really messed up (there are many on top of each other but you can't tell until you start to delete them).  I just don't have time to fix it right now.

P.S.  I created this on a Mac but it should work on a PC as long as my formatting works in your excel version.