Thursday, November 24, 2011

Black Friday. Ugh. And now... an update.

John thinks I insist on standing outside of Best Buy while waiting for their midnight open because I want a break from the nightly routine of getting the kids to bed. Which, if he knew anything about me at all, he would realize is totally ridiculous.   Okay. 98% ridiculous. But still more ridiculous than not ridiculous.

Why? Here are a few reasons I've had time to come up with while standing in this slightly chilly outdoor weather. For the past 30 minutes.

1. Standing outside in the cold (as mentioned, I'm in line as I type this) isn't comfy. Sure I'm in my yoga pants and winter coat but it's not where I would choose to spend my free time on a normal night. (Meaning any other night that *isn't* tonight.)

2. The kids are probably in dream land right now. Meaning that my night would be a bazillion times more relaxing if I were at home at this very moment.

3. I would rather be snuggled into my cozy spot on the couch watching one of the many "guilty pleasure" TV shows that are constantly on while snuggled up with a toasty baby and listening to the snores of my other two from their rooms.

No, what I'm really standing outside in the cold for is a 42" TV that we would never splurge on because it's one of those things I just can't spend an obscene amount of money on when we've got a mortgage, tuition for Katie, two car payments, and baby expenses. But for the price, I figured why not see what the fuss is about.

So I'm at the end of a very long line with next to no chance of getting one of the TVs but... I still don't want to give up. This is the first year I've done this and it's probably going to be the last (I don't play the lottery and I don't (usually) gamble because there's no guarantee I'll win) but even with the horrible terrible no good odds, I want to see it through.

In the cold.

Update:
I didn't get the TV. Duh. I pretty much knew I wouldn't but, like I told John,  I wanted to try. And he went with me.

Granted he did spend most of the time in the car watching the activity in the line (line jumpers. Ugh.) and listening to the police radio.  And let me tell you, things were hopping at Best Buy, Target, and Walmart.

As a nice little break... I did get to see two guys doing a choreographed dance in the back of a pickup truck. (I know, odd. And oddly entertaining.)  I watched said truck park. Two guys got out and started to dance a jig in the back of the truck.  A few seconds after they started, the truck pulled forward. With the guys in mid dance.  It seemed a little unexpected. And the quick move caused one of the guys to topple out onto the hard ground.  It was pretty funny.  Okay, I laughed so hard I teared up.  And then my eyes kept watering.  Comfortable?  No.  Worth it? Ohhhh yeah.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

37 Years.

My mom and dad will celebrate 37 years of marriage tomorrow. Thirty.seven.years.  Wow.

They met when mom was visiting Texas for a missions trip and my dad was the handyman at the church she was staying at.  Mom plopped down on the bed and it broke (how embarrassing,  right?), my dad came to fix it. With some help from my aunts (dad's sisters), mom and dad had their first date - roller skating with a group. Dad's sisters, mom, and her friend, and my dad. Thus began a really long courtship. I mean, I think it was pretty long since they met when mom was ... well, I won't mention any actual numbers, but it seems to me it took around 3 years before the big day.

During this courtship they wrote letters, sent messages on cassette tape, my dad came to visit mom, even moving into the apartments across the street from my grandparents house!

Finally... finally they got hitched.

But something wad missing.  The one thing that would make their lives complete...

They had me when they were living in Texas.  I can't imagine how hard it must have been for mom to have a newborn and not have her mom there for support.  I can't count the number of times grandma has wanted a "squeeze" and ended up with a gang of kids downstairs, leaving me free to do laundry or dishes without having to stop every couple of minutes to settle a dispute or cheer up a fussy baby.

And dad is there and ready to jump in with help to figure out car trouble, give horsey rides, handmake birthday pinatas (pink unicorn - with a matching stick - so cute I didn't want anyone to break it!) or take Katie to school or to awana club or for dinner at McDonald's and play time at the play center.

So I can't imagine how tough it was for them with a new baby. And though I'm sure dad's family helped out, it wouldn't have been the same as being near her mom.

Eventually we moved back north and have been here ever since.  It's cold in the winter and hot in the summer. Dad's adjusted pretty well to the extremely cold temps and on those really cold days I wonder what life would've been like if we had stayed in Texas. Warm sun, no snow, aahhhh.  But we didn't. Nope. Cold winters for the win!

Anyway, Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad!

37 years ain't nothing to shake a stick at.  Even a very pretty decorative pink pinata breaking stick.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Jackson.

UPDATED to fix picture size. Why didn't anyone tell me the pictures were huge and not actually viewable on the screen!

I've posted a few pics of Jack. He's the only one of my kids who stays still enough for me to get a pic on my phone. Jake always seems like he's seconds away from rushing off and Katie is so busy with VERY IMPORTANT THINGS that she doesn't have a lot of time to smile for pics.
So that leaves Jack.
For now, he's stuck with me.


Saturday, October 22, 2011

Jack is FOUR MONTHS OLD.

Are you as shocked as I am that these 4 months passed so quickly?
It doesn't seem like that long ago that I was recovering from my csection. In pain and exhausted from many late night feedings.
And now here we are. A slightly more rested mommy and a smiley, happy baby who loves to watch his big brother and big sister play.
He just had his 4 month checkup and he's a whopping 16.5 lbs, 25" long, and his head circumference is 45 cm. (They had to measure that three times. I think that measurement puts him in the 90th percentile, or the "giant melon head" club.)
He sleeps well, naps well, eats well, and can do it all while the other kids are making lots (and lots) of noise.
Katie and Jake are so gentle around him and I can't wait until they can play together. The three of them are going to be a force to be reckoned with.
It's not ALWAYS party time with these kiddos. Laundry seems to multiply, bath time is very long times three, and meal time can be challenging, but I wouldn't change any of it.
Well, unless I could make time stop... that would be helpful when it comes to dinner time, getting ready to go somewhere, and any time I need to sneak in a caramel apple (my new addiction).
But. Nothing else. No other changes.
Really. 
Really? 
Yes, really.



Thursday, August 25, 2011

Growing Pains. Mine.

Five years ago...

I was visiting family in Texas when I realized something was... off.

I didn't want to go out with my cousins (and they're a super fun bunch), had a hard time staying awake, just didn't feel like myself.  I thought I was getting sick and it took me a couple of days to realize that I didn't feel sick. Just sooooo tired.

On the drive home, I slept.  The WHOLE way home.  I slept for three. days.  Only waking up when we needed to eat or when we stopped for the bathroom. 

I think it was around the second day that I figured there wasn't anything wrong.  Just... something new.

And as soon as I got home, John went out to pick up a pregnancy test (because it's his job to pick up anything remotely personal and/or embarrassing *ahem* suppositories *ahem*) and the next morning when I woke up I took the test.  I waited for all of 2 seconds before the lines appeared. 

It was Positive.

I called John into the bathroom and showed him the stick and started to laugh.  Part excitement, part nerves, part "what on earth have we gotten into".  But mostly excitement.  (Okay, excitement with a dash of nerves.)

Doctor visits and tests, the ultrasound, baby showers.  Everything was so new and exciting and I couldn't wait.

Couldn't wait to hold my precious baby girl.

Labor and delivery (during which John enjoyed watching some kind of sport on TV and took video of the parking lot from our window... as if I weren't laying on the hospital bed IN PAIN) took forever and nothing was happening.

Delivery didn't go quite as planned so instead of welcoming Katie into the world to the sounds of sports fans cheering and soft lighting, her welcome was a quiet, cold, bright white room (there's just no ambiance in these operating rooms.  Ugh.).  She gave a cry as the doctor pulled her out of my c-section incision and I learned that the ultrasound had been right (whew, yay for the already painted pink room), we were finally Parents of a Baby Girl.

The nurse held her over me and I kissed her fuzzy head.  (My first moment with her and I wasn't at all icked out by the "residue" I'm sure was still on her, even though the nurses had wiped her off.  Really.  Not at all.  If "at all" = a little tiny bit.)

My parents were the first to hold her in the recovery room.  Katie was beautiful (even with the rakish scar over her left eyebrow - casulaty of the surgery) and quiet.  Content being held and cuddled.

A day or so after Katie was born, we noticed her eyes rolling oddly.  It just happened once or twice.  When we mentioned it to the nurse, just in passing, she quickly took Katie to the neonatal unit so they could observe her.  I guess menangitis was mentioned.  After 3 spinal taps (they had to repeat the test because it didn't work the first times.  Please note that we don't discuss this around Katie.  Ever.  That girl has a memory like an elephant.) and a brain scan (is that what it's called when they attach all of those sensors to the head?), Katie was declared healthy.  We were so relieved.  (What an understatement that is... I can't even think of words to describe how fortunate we felt the day we left the hospital with a healthy baby.)

She was picked up and cuddled pretty much from day one.  If she was fussy, sleeping, alert, drowsy, we were holding her.  She was the sweetest armful.

She never had colic, though there was that one night she cried and cried.  I held her, rocked her, danced with her, and still she fussed and cried.  John held her, rocked her, danced with her, and still she fussed and cried.  We didn't know what to do.  Finally, I think she wore herself out.  I remember her in her swing, fast asleep while me and John laid on the floor in the dining room, exhausted and afraid to move in case she woke up!

Doctor visits, shots, growth charts.  Birthdays, holidays, family events.  Such a joy for us to watch her grow.

Finally this week I took her to her appointments with the doctor and dentist, trying to fit them in before school started.  Surprise (or not really)!  She's a healthy 5-year-old. 

  Vaccinations? Check!
      Eyes and ears tested? Check!
        Cavity free? Check!

Knows her phone number, address, and full name?  Check, check, and check!

Proud mommy that her Katie managed the dental x-rays? Check.

Adult molars coming in? ... Ummmm, what?! *sigh* Check.

Mixed in with all of the excitement of getting supplies, a backpack, writing all of the school events on our calendar, is a little bit of sadness that we can't go back in time.

She'll never again fit snugly in my arms, never again have that baby smell, never again be that tiny.

Soon she'll march off to Kindergarden and make new friends, learn new things, explore more of the world, and do it all without us right next to her.  She handled preschool like a pro so this should be easy peasy... for her.  For me?  I'm not sure.

She's already going to her first "school friend" birthday party this weekend... I'm going with her, of course, because, well, she's still only 5 (even if it sometimes seems like she's 35).  They're going to some really cool play center.  I plan on wearing comfy clothes though in case I have to crawl through the tunnels.  You know.  In case it looks fun.  I'm sure she'll have a great time, and I'll get to watch her with the other kids.

Growing up faster than I want.

And I guess that's okay.  Because she's growing up to be more than I ever could have hoped for on that day 5 years ago when I felt the doctor pull her out of me and announce,

"It's a girl".

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Animals are...

Tonight we had chicken and corn on the cob.  It was really good (if I do say so myself, even though I didn't make it... thanks grocery store for your half price Monday chicken!).


While we were eating and John and I were talking, I was listening to the kids (because it's always important to listen to the kids... you never know when they'll plan something you will need to nip in the bud).  I overheard something... interesting.

Katie was trying to share some facts of life with Jake.

Jakey, do you know what animals are for?  Do you know Jakey?

Do you know?

(My ears perked up and I wondered what she would say.  I'm glad I listened.)

Animals are for eating. Animals are meat.  (Not too bad, right?)

Yes Jakey,  Jesus made animals for us to eat.  (Still... um, oooookay.)

We kill them and eat them... chickens, cows, lambs, sheep, bunnies...  (Whoa... where did that come from!?)

Did you know that?

(Then I remembered a little conversation we had one evening while we watched that Jamie Oliver show.  The episode where they showed a cow with all of the cuts of meat outlined with paint on his fuzzy cow body.  We might* have talked about the fact that the steak we love to eat... used to walk around.)

I'm a little glad Jake wasn't paying too much attention to his big sis.  He wasn't eating his chicken before her speech anyway so no harm done.

Now they're in Katie's room. I've heard "Jake, sit on the rug! Good dog." and "Jake, it's time for independent reading."

Makes me happy to see them play so nicely.

Oh, on an unrelated note... I just realized how odd it is that we call Jacob "Mr. Pants"... he doesn't ever want to wear pants and yet this seems to have become one of his nicknames.



*Yes. There was a cow with spray paint.  But Jamie Oliver himself pulled out a water hose and washed the cow down at the end of the show.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Just call me Barbie!

Jake watched Toy Story 3 last night on Netflix.  He loves the entire Toy Story empire and I think he loves Buzz, Woody, and Jessie more than any of his other toys (but not more than he loves wearing boots.  He really loves wearing boots. Especially Katie's pink princess ones).

The other night we were cuddling on the couch and it was just us.

Katie was asleep which is good because if Katie and Jake both wanted to cuddle we would have had a fight over which side each kid got to sit on, then Jake would have tried to push Katie over more so he could claim more lap space, then Katie would push back, then there would be crying.  Yes, speaking from experience here.  I shudder to think about a year or two from now when three kids are pushing and shoving to get a spot on my lap.

To hopefully strengthen the brother/sister bond, I tell the kids often that they will always be brothers and sister and that they will be best friends forever and ever.  It doesn't hurt to start that talk early.

So the other night I told Jacob that Katie and Jack would be his best friends forever.  I tried to put it in terms he would understand so I said they would be his best friends like SpongeBob and Patrick.  He gasped in awe with wide eyes.  And like Buzz, Woody, and Jessie.  He said WOOOOWWWWW, again with the wide eyes. 

Then I asked him who he would be... Buzz or Woody. 

He picked Buzz. 

Buzz is totally his favorite which means Buzz goes EVERYWHERE with him... even though he's hard plastic, weighs a couple of pounds, and makes loud noises if you accidentally hit one of his buttons as you're trying to sneak into the bedroom to cover a kid up with his (also Toy Story themed) blanket.

Then... he said,
"Jakey Buzz, Jack Woody, Katie Jessie, Mama Barbie, Dada Ken."

And I melted.  Mama Barbie.

I don't think he sees gray hair, flabby arms, fluffy tummy... he just sees mommy.  And I guess that to him, mommy means fruit snacks and pudding cups, jokes and laughing, hugs and tickles... oh, and time outs.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

She's a maniac, maniac on the floooorrrrr...

Okay, so I'm not really dancing like I've never danced before... but I am back to the 30 Day Shred.  In all it's sweaty, scary glory.

Yep. I started the Dancing with the Stars workout the day I got the okay from my doc to resume normal activities and did that for about a week (with the hope that it would get my body used to... well... moving...) and then I switched to the shred.  I found my abs again. (Sure, they're buried under a thick layer of fat, but they are there.) Plus, the kids think it's the funnest thing EVER.  Jake finally stopped trying to climb onto my back during the push-ups and has started stealing my weights for his own workout.  Katie grabs the soup cans to use as her weights (and she gets a couple for me when Jake has mine). And we're all tired when it's over.

In unrelated news, Jake got stung by a bee on Thursday night. On his elbow and his pinky finger. John said he ran up the steps to the deck crying "bee! bee!"  Poor kid.  He's fine now but he really wanted mama so I got to hold him and cuddle.

John mowed the lawn today and found a wasp nest right by where Jake was playing.  So maybe a wasp.  It's gone now so that's a relief.

He also went to Grammy and Grampy's to help with their new deck and Grammy stopped by to see the kiddos while the men went to get some more wood boards, thinking they would be gone for at least an hour (because that's what happened on Friday). They were done about 15 minutes after she got here so it was a very short visit.  So we got together this evening for dinner.  I had pizzas (Digiourno, YUM) and Grammy brought jello salad, watermelon, and cookies!

Grammy and Grampy asked Katie if she wanted to go to Sunday school tomorrow and she answered yes right away.  She chose a dress for Sunday and got her jammies, then brought her dress back to her room to switch it for another.  Jake rushed to put on the shoes he had been wearing all day (Katie's size 10 purple jelly sandals) and he was ready to go too.  Except he wasn't going.  It was the fastest good-bye we have EVER had with Grammy and Grampy.  Usually there are a lot of good-bye's and waves but tonight there was a big hustle!

So, after some cuddling with Jake and a workout, here I am.  I'm about to fed Jack and go to bed.

Sunday will be very quiet (I think... unless I just jinxed it) and I plan to make a chicken back or something chicken-y for dinner.  I'm hungry now just thinking about it!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

I guess Jake is a little afraid of sharks. I think that's a good thing.

There are very few things I can say I "win" when it comes to the kids. Netflix? I don't usually get to watch what I want, unless I want to also listen to Katie and Jacob complaining that they want to watch PRINCESSES (Katie) and BUZZ WOODY! (Jake). So usually when they need a break from each other, I'll put BUZZ WOODY on the laptop and find something Katie will deign to watch on the big TV. Because princess shows aren't really flooding the Netflix.  (Off topic, is anyone else shocked and a little annoyed that they raised their prices SO MUCH at the same time???)

And I guess now I can say I win at sharks.

     I'll explain.

Usually our dinners out are not relaxing (unless Jake is asleep) but I think I've found the key.

Sharks.

                   Yes, sharks.

Now, for some of you with kids who sit quietly and never try to run away from mommy (this was totally Katie. Quiet kid, good listener. NOT a runner... I could take her ANYwhere and 99.9% of the time, when we returned home I didn't have to change clothes because I was sweaty from chasing after her or holding onto her while dodging a flailing fist or because my pants were dirty from shoe scuffs because I had to carry her, kicking, back to our table) this might seem... harsh.

Don't judge.

            And if you do want to judge, don't tell me.

Oh!  Better yet, email me.  We'll go to dinner together.  And I'll pretend that Jake is your kid when he takes off for the kitchen or the table across the dining room.

Anyway.


So we're out to dinner last week with grandma and grandpa and Jake decides he doesn't want to sit. I had to hold him as he wriggled and kicked... he was a menace. To my legs and stomach.

So I told him that there were sharks on the floor and if he got down from his seat, the sharks would chew off his legs.

Aaaand now that I'm reading this, it does sound just a little scary.  (But I still gave Katie the "don't you dare" look when she started to tell Jake that Mommy was just kidding.)

Jake didn't get down off that seat the rest of the time we were there.  I was about to fall on the floor in shock a little surprised.

I should have known that he would start to talk... loudly... at some point once his plans for a little jog were foiled.  (An inside voice is also something we work on.)

Sooo, I might have told him that he was being noisy and that other people want to eat and talk and he was being a little too disruptive... and that if he didn't quiet things down, there were bumblebees that would come and sting him. And then he would puff up and fall on the floor and the sharks would get him.


Not my finest moment as mommy.  But it worked.

                                   And now I'm wondering if this will work in other situations.

Like... learning to hold hands while crossing the street, or staying in the driveway when we're playing outside.

And if he ends up afraid of sharks, well, all the better!  I mean, they could chew off a limb so a little healthy fear is a good thing, I think.  It's a lot more respectable than a fear of dolls and clowns.  (Not that I have those fears.  I'm just saying...)

I would welcome a little advice because I think a) Katie will spill the beans about sharks and how they need water to survive or b) Jake will will learn it on his own from some kids show and we're back to square one...

What do you do to keep your little runner by your side and well behaved at restaurants and on walks?

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Soon these feet will be running...

June 11, 2011
I took this picture at the hospital. I remember being amazed at how quickly Katie and Jake's feet grew too big to hold in the palm of my hand and I wanted to capture Jack's little feet on camera* before that happened.

*Does anyone use a camera these days? I never use a camera anymore... partly because I never have it on me when I want to take a picture and partly because with holding onto the diaper bag, purse, kid, and whatever toy Katie or Jake wanted me to hold at the moment there just aren't enough hands to get the camera out even if I did have it with me!


As I started to compare the pictures, I realized how quickly Jack is growing.

July 22, 2011
And seeing how quickly Jackson's growing and changing, well, that just made going back to work even harder.

Yes,

      I had to start work this past week.

It was so hard to leave the kids. I think this time has been more difficult. I don't know if it's just that Jackson is so ... EASY to care for, because he is. 

As babies, Katie and Jake liked to be held all. the. time. 

Jackson likes to lay on the couch, swing in his swing, sit in his car seat and just hang out. It doesn't hurt that he's got constant entertainment from watching Katie and Jake fight/play/run/laugh/yell.

As babies, Katie and Jake would wake up if the house got a little noisy.

Jack, well, I think that he got used to noisiness while in the womb because now that he's finally here, this boy sleeps through ANYTHING (and all I can say to that is THANK YOU, GOD because I know he answered my prayers. My oft prayed prayers.).

So, this week has been hard. Knowing I have to leave him and Jake at home. Telling Katie that Mommy is going back to work and hearing her cry and tell me that I can't go back to work because she's going to miss me.

Just being sad because this is the last time I'll ever go on maternity leave and have this much time at home at once with the kids.
July 29, 2011

Well, the first day back went well. It was hard but the kids were totally fine with me leaving. Katie went to school as usual and Jake was sleeping so at least I didn't have the kids staring at me from the living room window as I was leaving. 

And when I got home, I got lots of hugs from Katie and I soaked them in.

Jake? Well, he was more excited to see grandma.

Even as things change, they stay the same.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Katie is a SUPERSTAR!

My kid.  My wonderful kid who was too shy to dance more than one dance at last year's recital, danced all three dances with her class today. She laughed with her friends, she followed the teacher's moves, she smiled... she was wonderful. I am so proud of her. Proud of her for having the guts to get up in front of a bunch of people with cameras in the first place! I'm not sure I could have done that but she didn't let stage fright get to her.



Then we went to her classroom and we got her five MILLION coloring pages and her very first SCHOOL FRIEND birthday party invitation! My kid. She's got a school friend party to attend next month! (Just don't ask me if I'm more excited about the party or the fact that it's "no gifts please"...)

My kid. My little helper rushes to see what's wrong with Jackson before I can get to him. She puts his nuk back in, she picks out his onesie, she finds the burp cloth and blankets... she's planning to have 16 kids so I guess she has to get in lots of practice.

My kid. My sweet and sassy kid has started to ask for things instead of demand them (mostly). She says, "Mommy, could I have more milk please?" and she gets her own fork or spoon instead of saying "Moooom, you forgot something!" (in a sing song voice). I see her growing up right before my eyes!

She's my favorite little girl.

Monday, July 11, 2011

My three kids and a kid update

Three kids. I now know why we planned to stop at two.

Today I listened to Katie and Jake fight, Jake fell off of his bed (I'm going to assume there was no foul play between the kids and that it really was an accident) not once, but TWICE (accident?) and there were numerous hitting incidences as well as disagreements over toys. Sooo, nothing unusual.

Then after dinner I sat down to feed Jackson and Katie sat next to me and Jake was playing. Happy kids.

Then Katie got up to turn on the light.

Jake scooted into the now vacant spot and Katie was not happy. I told her to sit on my lap. She did and Jake decided he needed to sit on my lap too. But with Katie on one leg and Jack on the other there wasn't much room left. This didn't stop Jake. He started to climb onto my leg behind Katie and practically ended up on my shoulder. Both kids are crying and I'm laughing at how ridiculous the situation had become. (The kids didn't think it was funny. If they did think it was funny, they showed it by crying harder.)

Finally after listening to Jake cry for 10 minutes I laid Jack down on the couch and put Jake in his crib. In the seconds I was gone, Jack puked on the couch and Katie finally calmed down (she might have thought the puke... or maybe my reaction to it... was funny).

I got Jake out a couple of minutes later ... just before daddy got home from the store to find two crying kids. He carried both of the kids from the kitchen to the living room and made them laugh.

It's weird how daddy can always diffuse the crazy.

Mom called a bit later to say that storms had come through and there had been some damage at the lake place. We're going to check things out and hopefully it's not too bad.


Kid updates!!
Jackson is growing like crazy. He lifts his head up to look around, he pushes with his feet, he's awake most of the day and is happy in his swing or his caraway or laying on the couch or being held.

Jacob is talking a lot more. It's so fun listening to him. He especially likes saying "wake up!" when he thinks I'm even considering closing my eyes for two seconds.

Katie is in school and loves it. She still goes three days a week and Grandpa usually brings her. She's woken up with a good morning song seranade, given a piggyback ride downstairs for hair and face, piggyback ride back upstairs so she can dress herself for the day and then they're off. John took over last week while Grandpa was on vacation. He got to see her room and watch her play. He didn't want to pick her up too late on the first day but Katie told him to pick her up later the next day so she could play longer. I will never doubt that Katie knows what she wants.

I realized the other day that God answered my prayers. I've prayed for an easy baby, a happy baby, a healthy baby.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

What I've learned about Jackson - 14 days old (or, Got Milk? I do.)

Jack.

Sweet
Content
Sleepy
Hungry
NOT sensitive to noise

Jack has been such a good baby since his birth. I'm not trying to jinx it by writing this out or anything, but he has been a seriously GOOD baby ever since we met him in the operating room.

I've learned that his swing and nuk puts him to sleep, his car seat and nuk puts him to sleep, and rocking puts him to sleep. Yes. He sleeps a lot at this stage.

Not only has he been pretty easy in his first 14 days, he even nursed! None of my other babies would, and I was so happy that Jack took to it. And while I was at the hospital and able to "nap when the baby napped" it was kind of the one thing that only mommy could do for this sweet, tiny, new little baby and it was so cool to have that time with him... just the two of us.

Then, once we got home and those super helpful nurses weren't there to bring him over to the nursery at night so I could catch some sleep, or come in every few hours, wake me up, and hand me a snuggly baby (complete with fresh diaper) to nurse... well, I realized that nursing is a big commitment and it's HARD! And since we didn't invest the big bucks for a good pump, no one else would be able to take on any of the (500) feedings each day/night. Oh, and it was no longer possible to "sleep when the baby sleeps" because the other kiddos I birthed were 1) noisy, 2) needing mommy to settle disputes like the one about whose pop tart had more frosting or the one about whose beach ball was whose, and 3) noisy. Yes, I mentioned noisy twice because while Katie and Jake can be quiet and play really nicely together, they can also disagree and they must believe that he who yells loudest automatically wins because they are looouuuuddddd.

I also thought about my "hips," as Katie calls them, wayyy too much. The scene in "Look Who's Talking" wasn't too far off. You know the one, right? (Well, okay, maybe it wasn't THAT bad, but close enough to scare me just a bit.)

So we got home from the hospital on Saturday, I enjoyed nursing a number of times that evening and into the night and then on Sunday John headed over to Target to pick up some formula and bottles.

Good thing too.

Jackson seems to like a 3 to 4 oz. bottle at every feeding and for all the size of my "hips", there were not 3 to 4 ounces being produced so Jackson was eating pretty much constantly... and I was tired.

Jack's also a good sleeper. After his bottle, a diaper change, and a swaddle he's ready to go back to sleep. (Unfortunately, I'm usually pretty awake and right in the middle of Law and Order - at least one version seems to be on every hour - so I'm not getting as much sleep as I could be getting if I didn't like that show so much and could turn it off before the resolution.)

I don't know how he's able to sleep so soundly but it's awesome because he is able to totally ignore the massive amount of noise that his siblings can make. Seriously. loud. noise. I've mentioned that, right?

Like screaming, playing the recorder right next to him (no music lessons, grandma and grandpa just happen to have one laying around at their place) (and it made it's way upstairs for awhile... we stored it in Katie's tall dresser. Top drawer. Way in the back. On purpose. You know... to keep it "safe"), loud fighting, and just the other day there were loud shouts of "SUPER JAKE!" coming from all corners of the house while a heard of elephants (AKA Katie and Jake) tromped through the house.

Yep. He can pretty much sleep through anything at this stage. Hope it continues. Forever. Because he'll be sharing a room with Jake once we're ready to move him to the big crib and Jake can be pretty noisy.

So. Basically, we're pretty blessed to have this sweet, healthy, happy baby boy join our family.

I fell in love with him the moment the doc pulled him from my tummy.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Horsey Rides and a good Chop

Luckily I've been recovering pretty well from the c-section because sometimes watching John playing with the kids cracks. me. up.

Tonight Jake was giving daddy a piggy back ride.

And then he was giving him a chop on the head. I don't know how that game started but I *do* know that when Jake chops daddy, I actually HEAR the thud of Jake's hand connecting with the top of daddy's head.

And Jake doesn't care what he interrupts. In this case it was a diaper change for Jack.

It was pretty funny. I laughed pretty hard. And it didn't hurt (too much).

I'm thinking that maybe I'm finally ready to watch Funniest Home Videos again but without feeling like I'm going to pop stitches...

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sleeping baby

Jack is a great sleeper. I think this usually lasts a couple of weeks before baby is awake for longer stretches.

I'll take it! I love snuggling with this little guy.

Jack/Jake ... Tomato/Tomahto? Nahhh. It's "the boys"

I'm having a little trouble with something. No, it's not the multiple diaper changes or the fewer hours of sleep I'm getting.

I'm having trouble getting the boy's names matched up with the right boy.

For example, I posted to Facebook that I had already changed some of Jake's dirty diapers. And didn't realize that I don't have Jake this weekend until my mom commented that Jake is with them.

Duh.

I have a feeling that there will be a few of those "Jake/Jack" moments.

At least till Jack is a couple of years older and Jake AND Jack are partners in crime.

Then I'll just be yelling "boyyyyyyys!"

And that's okay with me!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Jackson joins our family!

"He's so big"

That's the first thing I heard when he was being pulled out.

And he is!

Jackson weighs in at 9 lbs. 14 oz. and is 21 1/2" long. He's absolutely perfect.

It's baby time!

C-section in less than 3 hours! Can you tell how ready I am from the picture?

Sooo ready to meet this baby boy!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Dreams can really mess with your head.

I woke up the other day feeling good and ready to jump out of bed.
I laughed a little about my dream... the one in which I was pregnant. Laughed for about a second till I remembered that... HOLD the phone... I really am pregnant.

Not achy, not tired because I was up 10 times during the night to use the bathroom, just feeling GREAT!
After a little more laughing, and checking my tummy *just* to be sure... I rooooooolllllled myself onto my right side, waited for the baby to shift from the left of me to almost center, and jumped out of bed finished roooooolllllllling myself out of bed.  Yep.  Definately still pregnant.
And now even more excited for June 8th. 

I'll be reporting to the hospital at 6 a.m. (yes.  6.) and into surgery for my c-section at 7:30 a.m. (yes... still A.M.).  I think we've decided on Jackson for a name, which I love love LOVE and both of the kids have been calling the baby Jack (Jacob seems to prefer the nickname) and Jackson (Katie's name of choice) for the last 4 months or so, so I think it stuck.

Tuesday is my last day at work because even though I could have taken a couple of days off, I decided they would be more needed after Jack makes his appearance.

I'm trying not to stress out and so far I'm doing a pretty good job.  Considering that we don't have the little crib put together, I still haven't found and cleaned the baby car seat, and I don't have any bottles or formula ready to go.  Diapers are on hold until I find out how big he is but we've got a handful of newborn size that we can squish him into unless he's smaller than Katie or Jake were in which case I'm fine for about 2 days worth of changes.  I'm waiting on diapers because Jacob and Katie went into size 1 diapers pretty much right away so I don't want to end up with newborn and not use them.  Although... Katie does like having them for her dolls... 

There's tons more we haven't done and lots that I want to do.

I really want to put a shelf up downstairs for our printer (that I unearthed from the laundry room clean-up), buy toner for the printer, sort the rest of the boy clothes into smaller boxes so they don't get jumbled up again, bring home more boxes from work so I have some to work with, grocery shop for the stuff that I can freeze or that will keep so we can shop lighter for a couple of months.

I did organize the laundry room (where I found the little crib - whew), put the 0-3 month baby clothes away (that mom washed and folded for me this weekend and that I've told Katie are NOT for her dolls.  She asked if she could use Jake's clothes and my answer was no.  I already wash enough of Katie's clothes due to numerous changes throughout the day that there's no more time to wash other unworn clothes!), and organized a shopping list for our meal plans.

I just can't find the energy to get going.  I think it has something to do with feeling huge and roly-poly and not at all motivated to move.  The kitchen floor hasn't even been swept in 3 days and that's usually a once a night thing.  Arg.  Hopefully this weekend will be more productive.  I plan to clean and play with the kids and sit outside (if the bugs stay away) and just enjoy it.

My last weekend with just the four of us.  Mommy, Daddy, Katie, and Jacob.

And on Wednesday, we'll be five.  Mommy, Daddy, Katie, Jacob, and Jackson.

And oh, how our lives will be changed!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

We're usually in and out of the library because SOME little people don't know what SHHH means...

But last weekend there was a library event that was right up Jake's alley (and a lot of fun for the rest of us too).

There was a guitar player, a keyboard player, a wood chip carver, and an artist showing kids how to make clay animals from pieces of clay!

We got to choose four colors and then we rolled, shaped, and cut and when we were done we had these cute little turtles!

Katie made the orange and red turtle. The artist was really nice and complimented her on how well she did. Mine is the purple and yellow one. I did okay too. But boy is it hard for me to stop "fixing" it as I go.

Daddy and Jake looked at books while we were creating.

Just before everyone packed up, we went to see the keyboard player. For his last song he got John and Katie (and some poor, unsuspecting older library ladies) up to do "head, shoulders, knees and toes". I was exempt because I'm hugely pregnant... yay me.

After 2 rounds of the song, Jake decided daddy should hold him so he wandered over. Luckily for John because he ended up standing with Jake and doing the moves with him. Those library ladies weren't as lucky... I think they did the song 10 times and each time the leader asked Katie if she thought they could go FASTER and every time she would nod yes. And the library ladies would sigh. Good sports though. Even if everyone was a little sweaty there at the end!

Lots of fun and it was nice that Jake didn't get shushed at all!


I'm typing this from my phone so please forgive any funny typos!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Katie WILL have her birthday celebration today! (Even if we all need to take shelter in the basement.)

Today was supposed to be Katie's big birthday bash, postponed from April because Jake got sick with a virus.

And now we've got tornadoes.

Seriously. Like trees down, sirens blasting, debris flying.

Tornadoes.

The kids are with Grammy and Grampy this afternoon so we can get everything decorated and cleaned up for her party at 5:30... and now I don't know if there's going to BE a party.

They're doing fine (even Katie with her obsession of the news coverage of the tornado) with Grammy and Grampy so that's a relief.

Katie prayed a very nice prayer, Grammy told me when I called. I don't know what she said exactly but I would bet it included asking God to keep her toys safe.

Okay... so it's a couple of hours later and the weather seems promising.

The house is fine and we're all safe, thank God for that.

Now to avoid going into labor, falling and breaking a bone, or any other hazardous event and we're home free!

Did I just jinx this thing?

Friday, May 13, 2011

So I had something scheduled to post last night... and blogger went and lost it. The gist of the title was "Don't bring Katie any toys."

It was all about... our Wednesday and how Katie went to gymnastics and did a spin on the bar and did so well that the teachers told the kids to watch Katie and do it like her.  This is after her walk on the high balance beam last week!  So proud.

It was all about... Grandma and Jake joining us for dinner at a fast food mexican place and grocery shopping.

It was all about... Katie totally having a huge fit because I told her to clean up her toys and then she could go for a walk with Grandpa.  It didn't go over well.  She cried, yelled at me, screamed, and carried on.  She was not behaving well.

It was about... me actually crying because I felt like a bad mom when Katie was just so naughty with her temper tantrum and screaming and yelling and carrying on.  This was all very upsetting to a pregnant woman with no AC in a house that felt like it was 1000 degrees hot.

It was all about... me worrying about getting our car fixed, paying for Katie's summer program, getting her school supplies, needing new windows, cleaning the carpets, washing baby clothes to put in drawers before June comes around, calling service plus to come out and look at our AC because when I turned it on Tuesday evening it wasn't working and I did I mention that I was HOT, tired, and sweaty? 

There's more, but I'll spare you.  I'll just say that it was pretty intense stuff.

And now, no one will ever read it.  Because it's gone thanks to Blogger's little issue.

*sigh*

Maybe that's okay because I do feel better today.

Not as good as I want to feel, but for sure not as hormonal and hopeless.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

And then she cried...

If the opportunity presents itself, I talk to Katie about loving Jesus and having him in our hearts and how he's always with us... (and how he can see EVERYTHING WE DO and how he knows EVERYTHING WE THINK, and how if there's mean and angry feelings in our hearts, there's NO ROOM FOR JESUS THERE.  Not to scare her or anything.  We might just happen to have these talks when she's in a mood and being... oh, a little mean and disrespectful though.)

Well, one day Katie told me she loves Jesus more than she loved me.  I suspect this was meant to be a mean thing (like when she told Grandma that Grandma was a flower... a flower wilted and stuck in dirt or something like that, after Grandma wouldn't give her a third popsicle).  And even if she meant it mean, it still gave me a good opportunity to tell her that she's supposed to love Jesus first and most, then her family and then other stuff.

This was a few days ago.

Fast forward to last night.  Katie is in bed singing to herself.  (My actual Facebook post was: Katie is in bed singing to herself. I can hear her sing "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus is alive"... Now she's humming and "bawking" like a chicken. And back to Jesus!

She had just picked out her clothes for Wednesday that she can wear to gymnastics (long shorts and a tank top because she gets sweaty, her words) and she had just given me orders not to forget to bring her "Katie" cup for gymnastics in case she gets thirsty. (I suspect it was the fact that the other kids had their own cups last week that makes remembering her cup super important.)

I thought the evening ended on a very high note.

I went to bed smiling about how cute she was. 

I went to bed cheering about how it was earlier than 12:00 a.m.

I had just gotten comfy and was finally relaxing feeling baby Jackson kick and push and jab... when I heard it.

Her saaaaaad voice.  The voice that gets weepier and weepier.  Until the soft weepy voice turns into a wail. 
She was talking to herself but she sounded like she was on the edge between weepy and wailing.  (Once she's at "wailing", we've got a crisis.  And I've got a headache.)

So I went to check on her before she passed the point of no return and as we cuddled I asked her what was wrong.

She said (in her weepy voice)...

"Mommy, you know how I'm sposed to love Jesus first, and then my family, and then my toys?"

I said yes.

"Well... Mommy... *sniff* I don't think I doooooo *sob sob* I think I love my toys moooore *sniff* than I love Jeeeeeesus*sob sob sob*. "

I hid my smile and tried not to let her feel my belly shake from my laughter as I gave her an extra long squeeze.

I told her Jesus understands how hard it is to be a kid because he was born as a baby and had to grow up just.like.her.  And Jesus knows how she feels, and what's in her heart, and that she loves him.  And because Jesus knows all of this, he also knows that she wants him in her heart because she loves him.  It might not have been the perfect answer but... 

She calmed down a little.

Then we snuggled till she fell asleep. 

Crisis averted.

At 12:00 a.m.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Life skill lesson for Katie at 5 years old. Too much too soon? Nah.

Katie didn't want the egg salad I made for dinner so she MADE her own peanut butter and jelly sandwich. All by herself. Basically I gave her a butter knife, peanut butter, jelly, and the loaf of bread. And she turned it into a sandwich... that she actually ate!

Then she counted all of the big girl stuff she did today.

1. Made her bed ON HER OWN
2. Cleaned up her toys ON HER OWN
3. Cut up eggs for our egg salad sandwiches (with one of those Pampered Chef egg cutty things)
4. Rinsed off dishes
5. Got her OWN bread for her sandwich
6. MADE her sandwich

She's super proud of herself!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Katie... This is your mother speaking. STOP growing up.

You know how one second you're changing diapers or looking for a little shoe or packing a diaper bag and the next you're not?

Well, that's what's happened with Katie.

She grew up on me. 

She turned 5, even after I told her not to.

She turned 5.

Not fair.

I revived from my faint just enough to go with her on her play date during her birthday week (which was a couple of weeks ago but for some reason I didn't hit the post button so I'm doing it now... just pretend you're reading this on or around April 9th!).

Jake, Grandma and Grandpa came with us and Katie played with Jake until Livvy (that's her friend) arrived and the girls played for a bit before stopping to eat.  Jake had a great time climbing to the top of the platforms and going across the wobbly tunnel.  He didn't get stuck and was totally unafraid, but any time Katie started to go down toward the entrance, she made sure he was okay and following her. 

When it was time, the girls got their shoes on and Grandpa brought Katie to her kids club.  I sent along a treat for her table (princess fruit snacks for the girls, toy story fruit snacks for the boys) and went with Grandma and Jake to order Katie's cake.  What theme, you ask?  Um, more princesses.

Then I ran to Aldi's for bread, remembered they had a good price on ham and picked that up too, saw some cookies, fruit snacks, fish fillets and added those to my cart.  I went in for bread.  How does it happen that I leave with more than I planned on?   I expect it at Target, but Aldi?  My first mistake was getting a cart in the first place!

Tonight (not really... this was actually Katie's actual birthday day) we went to dinner with Grandma and Grandpa for Katie's birthday dinner.  Last year it was Red Lobster, this year it was OCB.  Luckily, Grandma and Grandpa reminded Katie that OCB has her icee drink and she gets an ice cream cone after dinner.  It was way cheaper than Red Lobster and everyone gets what they want!  Jake included.  A buckets worth of mac and cheese?  Check.  A handfull of corn?  Check.  A few cups of fruit?  Check.  It was way better than buying him a kids meal and him not eating any of it.

Katie enjoyed her dinner too.  She also enjoyed eating a lemon slice.  Maybe she takes after me... I loooove lemon slices.  My mouth is actually watering right now as I type this!
Katie brought Jake a gift so he could open something and not feel sad.  How precious is that?  She wrapped one of their toys in one of baby dolls shirts and made (yes, MADE) him a card!  He looked at the card but was distracted once she opened her gift and he saw the TOY STORY picture on the box.

Grandma and Grandpa gave her the Ken doll from Toy Story.  Her princess dolls now have someone to go on dates with.  Which is what they were doing for about 30 minutes this evening.  Oh, change that... Ken was waiting to go on a date... the princesses were keeping him waiting.  Katie said he was waiting for 6 weeks.  Poor Ken.  And all this after he was rude (not sure how but it must have been pretty bad) and the princesses were planning to run train tracks over him.  I don't know if they set him free before the train arrived, or after.

Her party is on Sunday and she's really excited.  Grandpa and her have been working on a pink unicorn pinata for the party and just tonight got the unicorn horn in and filled it with candy.  This is like a work of art.  I almost don't want to see it destroyed, it's so cute!  I'll post pics once I have a chance.  It's seriously cute.  Grandpa crafted the horn and it's not just a tube with a point... he made a spiral around it.  The unicorn fur (not sure if unicorns have fur or what but you know, the stuff that covers the bod) is pink and grandpa put rows of the pink strips on it that he painstakingly cut into fringes so it looked like fur.  There's a string mane and tail. 

Seriously, I do not want to break this open it's so cute.  But Katie has no qualms.  It sounds like she wants to use her princess bat for the breaking.  Princess theme rears it's pink, sparkly head.

Finally got the birth certificate papers in the mail.  Woo hoo for me!
I didn't hear the kids argue once today.  (Maybe that's because they were either playing downstairs with their favorite people or eating and separated by a table.  Who knows.)

Katie just came in and asked, "Mom?  What are you doing without me?"  Another golden phrase?  "Mom, are you thinkin what I'm thinking?" 

She cracks me up.  Love this kid...

My 5 year old.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Little dictators don't get what they want (all of the time)

I ran to the grocery store last night for two things.  A&D (or "butt paste" as we call it in our house) and chicken.  Oh, and bread.  And I can't forget the juice.  Oh, maybe some coupon items too...  And John wanted a comb.

*sigh* It's never "just two things".

Anyway, before I left, Katie stops me and looks up at me with her sweet face, eyes big, and asks me if I could get her a present while I'm at the store.

I told her I would see.  I think she's figured out that this usually means yes in mommy speak.

She lost the big eyes and stared directly at me as she laid down her demands of what she wanted.  "Something with princesses on it.  And glitter.  And don't forget."

So, when I got home with a princess coloring book that came with princess stickers (I think they were glittery), she looked through the whole book, seriously thumbed through it with a look of concentration, then she looked at me, held up the book, and said, "Mommy, I wanted paintNot a coloring book."  And gave it back to me.  With the expectation that she would get a painting book. 

Um, I don't think so.

And it's funny that she thinks there's a chance that it might happen.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Urgent care is for wimps... the emergency room is where it's at!

Fun evening on Friday. Me and Katie and a friend and her two kids went shopping at a GREAT sale (seriously good deals) then to DSW, then to a pizza place for dinner, THEN to Walmart. 

I bought the pants I mentioned in my post from a few days ago (at $10, not the $2 I hoped to spend... but I think they're worth it...) and Katie got $5 to spend on whatever.

She bought a ballerina princess barbie.  Of course.

It seems like in the past year she's gathered a collection of barbie/princess dolls. We even had our first guy barbie join the group on Thursday (a birthday gift from Grandma and Grandpa) and Katie loves him. You might have heard of him... his name is Ken. He's in that new Toy Story movie?

Katie is pretty generous with her dolls... Jake introduced Ken to Woody, Sponge Bob, and Buzz and now they're buds. It's so good for Ken to get out with the guys sometimes... He's seriously outnumbered by the princesses. Those girls won't leave him alone!


So we finally head home at about 10 pm and it was time. We used Grandpa's truck for our transportation and I think it brought back memories of all of the times she's gone somewhere with Grandpa... which made her miss grandpa (TEARS on her face and her sad voice telling me "Mommy, I miss Grandpa soooo much.") and we were both tired.

We finally get home. I headed to the bathroom, and on my way I heard Jake cough in his room. A cough that sounded like a seal bark. Really bad.

John picked him up and he just didn't seem like his usual self (I know... middle of the night, of course he'll be tired, but it seemed different) and he was breathing funny but hadn't been sick or anything.


Katie was her usual helpful self by mentioning that Jake "might have" swallowed a tiny toy. She never said he actually swallowed this toy but she said that he had a tiny little ball or something and now she doesn't know where it is. Helpful, right? Just enough info to freak us out. Thanks sweetie.

Soooo, off I go to the ER at 10:30 at night.

Jake was tired and his nose was really snotty. Pretty gross... all of that snot. John does better with body fluids than I do but I do better with emergency care. I guess it's a given that I take one for the team this time.


(As a side note, John has been puked on WAY more than I have in our parenting career so we're probably still not even... although Jake DID pee on me during my c-section... right as he was being pulled out of my stomach which is pretty gross. Maybe we are even after all.)
Waited about 20 minutes to be called into the first room with the triage nurse. Oxygen levels were fine. Huge sigh of relief. A bit of a fever, lots of snot, and lots of nurse charming later and we were back in the waiting room. For about 45 minutes.

Not too bad so far. Hospital waiting rooms can be interesting.

Got called back to an exam room with a bed so we snuggled in and waited.

And waited.

And waited.

Doc came. Gave Jake a quick once over but he didn't find anything scary. He ordered an x-ray and left to see other patients. 


Oh, a random guy pushing a computer walked into our room just before the doctor came in.  He typed away but didn't say anything to me.  Looks like it's this guys job to wheel his computer around with the doc, taking notes. He didn't look around, didn't say hello, didn't acknowlege us at all.  It was pretty funny.  Not very funny now that I'm typing this out, but at the time it gave me a chuckle.

Waited for the x-ray guy.

Waited.

Waited.

Dozed off snuggling with Jake till a
 nurse stopped by to ask if he wanted to color. He said yes in his cute voice. She brought in a table and colors and a book for him.

I dozed off again with him sitting in front of me, coloring away.

About an hour and a half later, doc comes to see if we've been to x-ray. I opened my eyes to a squint and told him that we hadn't. The tech came about 20 minutes later. Asked if I could be pregnant so he could ask a nurse to hold Jake during the x-ray.


Pregnant?  Ummm, yes.

Found a nurse. Did the x-ray. Jake charmed again. So cooperative and so sweet and he wasn't even afraid when I had to step away into the x-ray booth. He got 3 stickers.

Then back to the room and the same nurse asked if Jake wanted a popsicle... he said yes. And smiled at her.  Again, the little charmer.

We finally got the verdict. Nothing on x-ray (thanks again, Katie) and it looked like a virus. A contagious virus. He mentioned what to do in case of croup but the verdict was virus.

We finally got home at around 3:30 a.m. Yes, in. the. morning.

John held Jake and I went to bed.

And we decided to postpone Katie's birthday party when she ended up with a sniffly nose the next day. She wad surprisingly okay with it... once she made sure she would still get the princess cake she picked out when we did reschedule her party.


Oh, Grandpa? You might notice a blue, rectangle shaped sticker on the window of your suburban. Katie may have accidentally (or on purpose) stuck that there after our stop at the big sale. She was very upset when I mentioned that it was not a good idea to stick sticky stickers onto car windows... especially when the car window is not ours. She got very emotional when she thought that you might be mad at her. Funny, she didn't care so much about how mommy would feel when she stuck a sticker on the window of our car...

Friday, April 8, 2011

Some blog updates...

Hi everyone!

I'm considering changing the design of the blog.  I'm not going to go crazy and totally create something beautiful from scratch, no, it will probably be more like, "Hmmm, what template on Blogger am I loving more than the one I've been looking at for two years...?"  because I am not techy.  At all.

I'm still just surprised that I managed to add a "Subscribe" button and a"Follow by Email" button onto my blog. 

Psst...

It's right over there.

Over to your left  
                                 < -----------
                                                and
                                                    down
                                                          a little.

You know... in case you wanted to get every exciting post update sent directly to your email account OR reader (love my reader).  Or both?

But wait...

You might not want to do that.

Because I've also figured out how to get my blog to update from my phone, which means that I might, possibly, probably be posting more random (and by random I mean once or twice a day) pictures of the kiddos and stuff we're doing.  So if you don't want the extra email in your inbox, you might just plan to stop by when you've got a moment to catch up.

Oh, Grandma and Grammy? 

You there?

You might want to sign up for the email.



Because those pictures are going to be CUTE.

Katie "flies" and jogs on the Wii

Grandma and Grandpa have a new game on their Wii and Katie has been playing along! She jogged and flew around before bed the other day and last night too. She had so. much. fun!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Beds, diaper changing trickery, and pet store fish

Okay, continuing on from yesterday...

On a side note, we picked up these beds about a week ago but Jake was a little sick (again!) and they've been sitting in our garage just waiting to be set up.  So, we get home and I notice that one of the headboards was missing from the garage.  Then I realized the mattress and other stuff was missing too.  Got in the house to find that John had been busy while we were gone... Katie's new bed was set up and her old bed was in Jake's room!  That was just the inspiration I needed.  That night I got Jake's room set up and everything in place.  It was a relief that everything fit in there and I can now say that space is at a premium in every room of our house.

Now we just need to paint the boys room, sort Jake's clothes, find curtains (that aren't pink - a leftover from Katie's habitation), get another sound machine, figure out if we're going to have issues with Jake staying put in his big boy bed or if he'll be as good a sleeper as he is now...if he's not in baby jail his crib.  Lots to think/worry about.

Oh, Katie was trying to help me the other night.  Jake usually does his best to avoid me when I need to change his diaper (I think he thinks it's a game) so I have to be very tricky when I try to catch him because he's faster than me now. 

So, the other night, Katie had a toy he likes and was telling him "Jake, come over her and look at this toy! You really like this!  It's so fun, see?  Isn't it fun?  Mommy needs to change your diaper, you should come here and mommy will change you and I'll give you this toy!  Won't that be nice?" and so on in her very best big girl/mommy voice.  She mentioned the toy, then me changing his diaper maybe 3 times with no luck.  He wasn't having it.  Finally, she looks at me and says (in what sounded like a reassuring, don't want to hurt your feelings because Jake doesn't want anything to do with you voice), "Mommy, maybe I won't tell Jake you're here, okay?"

So what else... I had my OB visit on Monday.  It went well (no shots, no tests, no discomfort... unless you count the weigh-in).  Gained 2 lbs since my last appointment TWO WEEKS AGO.  Arg.  Doctor isn't alarmed since this brings the grand total to 22 lbs gained through the last 7 months.  Also, good news.  I don't have to add another iron pill to my packed pill holder!  The doc looked at my levels and, while they're still down from the last time my hemoglobin was tested, the levels aren't horrible so I'm okay at 2 iron pills per day.  Can I just say?  What a relief!

Feeling okay mostly.  I'm not even that tired... but when I'm ready to sit down, I'm realllllly ready to sit down.  And it just seems like I can be right next to the kids all evening puttering around in the kitchen or living room and no one looks at me twice (or acknowledges that I even exist) but when I go to sit down on the couch and just get comfy, it's like suddenly I'm the air they need to breathe, the filling in their pop tart, the glass slipper in Cinderella's story.  And they neeeeeed me.  Sometimes it's fun to be neeeeeeeeded.  Especially when it's a super tough question about how to play a game on Sprout and they're in awe of me because I can figure that stuff out. 
Oh, there was also that time at Petco when we were looking at the fish and I was reading the names off of the tags.  We were about 3/4 of the way through after having stopped at each tank to admire each fish (lots and lots of fish) and I had just read off the name of the fish.  Katie looked at me with wonder and said something about how smart I was.  I asked her what she meant and she answered that I knew all of the names of the fish.  Ha!  I had to tell her that I was reading them off of the card.

(But sometimes it's hard to pull myself up (again) off of the couch for something for the 6th time in 10 minutes.)

And finally, Jake scared us half to death the other day.  Dad and John were loading something into the truck and Jake snuck out of the house.  (I did say he was outside... but apparently no one heard me.)  He took off running down the street and was just over half a block away before John caught him.  Luckily his little light up shoes were on so we could see him in the not-quite-dark but I don't even want to imagine how that could have turned out.

Just some other odds and ends... the kids ate sloppy joes and liked them, I made a mexican tater tot hotdish that everyone ate (even the kids had 3rds!), Jake has developed a love of toast to the exclusion of actual dinner foods, I sent the birth certificate requests in for both kids (lucky me... I was picked to do a dependant audit at work and have to prove date of birth, etc.  Of course that had to happen.), our hot water heater broke and we had to buy a new one, and lastly, I've got 2 months and 1 days left of pregnancy!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Said goodbye to Costco... it was hard.

Took Katie to Walmart this weekend because when I was there last week, I found a pair of knit pants for $2.  (Yes.  Two bucks.  The price tag said $10 but I really needed some comfy pants for work and these seemed to be okay.  Got to the checkout and they rang up as $2.  I should have gone back right then and picked up 5 more pairs but... I didn't.)  I decided I would go on Saturday after I thought about the expense a bit more.  Then I was like, what?  Think about spending $2 on pants I could wear during the rest of my pregnancy AND after? I'm kicking myself today.  Because today, the $10 pants that last week rang up at $2 actually did cost me $10.  Each.  So I took them out of the cart and just picked up the stuff I needed for Katie's birthday party.

The highly anticipated princess theme stuff.

You know... The princess plates, princess cups, princess napkins, princess tablecloth.  Princesses. everywhere.  Katie was very happy.  She was also in love with this outfit (Tinkerbell) and just exclaimed over how cute it was and that maybe she could wear it on her birthday.  It was pretty cute (in other words, it wasn't totally princess obnoxious) and it didn't cost a fortune so I told her we would buy it. 

More exclamations over how cute it was and how excited she was to wear it, I decided it was worth the $13 it cost.

However, in the excitement of finding all of my princess party stuff and this cute outfit, I managed to forget that when we were at Target a couple of weeks ago she found a dress that stopped her in her tracks.  Literally.  She stopped right in front of the rack and just stared at this dress.  And tried it on and twirled around in the dressing room and I was totally suckered into buying the "beautiful dress" for her to wear.

On her birthday.

Luckily, Katie has quite a week planned. She's got kids club on Wednesday, dinner out on Thursday, and her party on Saturday so even if she decides to add her purple Christmas dress into the outfit rotation, there are enough events to go around.  I'm thinking Tinkerbell on Wednesday and the beautiful dress on Sunday.

After Walmart we ran to Costco to eat samples pick up diapers and wipes and some other stuff I had coupons for.  And we shared a hot dog and an ice cream bar (seriously, those nut covered ice cream bars are SO good).  And then I *gulp* cancelled our membership.

Costco isn't exactly in my neck of the woods so it wasn't convenient to run over when we were low on something.  Plus, I did a little cost comparison and the stuff at Sam's Club (where my parents have a membership) and Sam's Club was actually cheaper by a dollar or two... or three for the things I buy most often in bulk!  So I cancelled.  I might have been in shock a little but I made it out of the store without any dramatic goodbye scene.

No tears allowed.  But sniffles are permitted.

Okay, so just as I was going to hit "publish" I realized that this post was getting VERY long.  So I'm ending here for the day and I'll post the rest tomorrow. 

Really, I won't forget. 

Really.  I'm going to schedule the part I copy/pasted to post tomorrow afternoon and I'm going to do it RIGHT NOW.  Otherwise I might forget.  Like two seconds from now. 

Oh, and, as always, feel free to leave a comment... I'm not sure if anyone reads this stuff anymore!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Iron. It's not just for pumping anymore. (Get it? Pumping iron... like a body builder? Okay, I tried to spruce up the title a little... stretch with me here.)

So, this pregnancy has been going pretty well.  I'm not in (much) discomfort, I'm still pretty active, and I don't have perpetual morning sickness.  Win, win... WIN.

However.  I do seem to have low hemoglobin.  About 4 months ago, my doctor told me that I would need to take more iron for this. 

So after about a month of procrastination, I started to take more iron.

Two pills a day.  Followed by a pill each time that will take care of any *ahem* side effects of the two iron pills a day.

Now.  I'm also on thyroid medicine.  I take this each day.  Two (yes two) separate doses, alternate days.  Not confusing at all.

I have to take the thyroid meds one hour before or after eating and I have to take the iron at least four hours after taking the thyroid and I have two iron pills that I don't want to down at one time...  SO, I take my thyroid pill in the morning (and alternate between two different measurements) when I wake up, my iron and "other" pill during lunch, and the other iron and "other" pill at night with my pregnancy vitamin.  (You can only imagine the hijinks that ensue when I forget to take my thyroid in the morning.  It throws off my whole day.)

Also, between all of the bottles I would sometimes get a little confused as to which pill was taken when and one day I ended up taking my thyroid pill twice in one day and my iron not at all... and that's the first time I actually noticed I had taken the wrong pill.  Has it happened before?  I don't know.  So, now I have them all neatly stored in one of those days-of-the-week pill cases...

It's been working out okay.

But today I got this note from my doctor...

Kristina,
You passed your 1 hour glucose test. (YAY!  I was worried I would have to take the 3 hour test)
Your thyroid is normal. (Yay again!  That's great news!)
Your antibody screen was negative. (Woo hoo!  I don't remember what this was for, but negative usually means "good")
Your hemoglobin is slightly low, so you should take an extra iron pill daily. These are available over the counter. Wait, what?

Did you read that last part?  Yeah.  I did too.  I read it about 12 times... before I was able pick my jaw up off of the floor and resume normal breathing patterns.  My little days-of-the-week pill holder is starting to get a little bit crowded.

Oh, and when I called John to give him the exciting news (about my glucose and thyroid) he gave me some exciting news too.

Jake's been throwing up. 

He threw up on John, the carpet, the rug, the kitchen floor, and my red couch pillow (no, not the red couch pillow Katie cut open and spilled all of the little styrofoam beads out of... the other red pillow).  Poor baby.

I'm thinking we may need to borrow the carpet cleaner again.

Friday, March 18, 2011

I'm still around just busy, busy, busy!

Yes.  I'm still here. It's been a busy month for me.  Wait, I'll just say that maybe it seems busy because I'm growing a baby and pretty tired much of the time.  And the times I'm not tired I'm spending organizing gift bags and blankets and shoes and closets (you know, those things that absolutely MUST be organized right that minute or else...).  Which makes me tired.  As a matter of fact, I'm pretty tired right now just thinking about being tired.

But I'm still here!

We've had a fun week so far.  Katie went to cubbies with Grandpa as usual (who I heard was getting off of work 30 minutes earlier so Katie could play at McDonalds a little longer before church), I took both kids to dinner with a friend who also brought her two kids who are about the same ages as Katie and Jake.  We tipped a bit more heavily after we realized the chaos we brought.  Our server was excellent (and patient with our multiple requests for more bread.  Who knew the kids *ahem* could eat so much of it!).  I also have a suspicion that maybe we were the reason that the table next to us stayed empty during our entire (noisy) visit even though the restuarant was totally full the entire night.  Now tonight we're going to Cole's birthday party.

Then it's the WEEKEND.  Maybe I'll find a closet to organize or something.  Or take a nap.

The kids are as super, wonderful, and a mix of sweet and sour so not much different there and my pregnancy is going really well.  The baby loves to kick and wiggle and, yes, kick.  A lot.  Usually for most of the day and part of the night.  He does calm down when I go to sleep - is this a good sign?

I had my OB visit (with the glucose screen - can I just say bleck?  That stuff tastes awful) yesterday and everything is going smoothly.  The CNP tried to listen for the heartbeat and usually she's right on with the machine in the right spot and the goop kept to one area but wouldn't you know it...

By the time she felt for the baby, turned to get the goop, put it on my stomach, got the machine ready and in place to listen (this didn't take as long to do as it did to type), the baby had moved.  I ended up with goop all over my whole stomach as a result of our extensive search to find him again (not that he could go far) and finally found him. 

In the same spot we started looking. 

I'll bet he was laughing at us. 

I wonder if he'll have Jake's "I'm so cute how could you possibly be upset with my behaviour?" grin...

Katie doesn't use the "I'm so cute" grin too much anymore.  Either we get the attitude like, "how can I be expected to know that?" as she looks down her cute nose at us OR she just looks back at us with an expression as puzzled as ours ... and very convincingly blames it on Jacob.  This doesn't always work although she is very convincing. 

It usually backfires when we know Jake couldn't be the culprit.  Like when I find the word "NO" written on our fridge, on the cupboards, on the wall... (this last time I was happy it was done with whiteboard marker).  It doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to deduce who could be responsible for anything legibly written on surfaces.  I do know, on the other hand, that Jacob was probably responsible for the whiteboard marker scribbles found in his bedroom closet.

Katie is also very creative... with insults.  She was at the lake this weekend and I guess she wanted a THIRD popsicle and Grandma said no.  Katie told Grandma, "You're like a flower... in the ground with no water."  My kid.

Oh, and Jake is still dumping out glasses.  Glasses of juice, water, milk... whatever beverage someone happens to leave out.  Last time he even made me think I had a chance at getting to the glass before he could dump it out.  Waiting till I started my "NNNNnnnoooooooo!" run toward him (pregnancy+running isn't funny) before he grinned, reached over, pulled it off of the table, held it out from him (so he wouldn't get messy) and dump it out.  I almost made it but he's just. too. fast.  This hasn't happened in awhile, mostly because I'm on to him and I remember to push everything back a safe distance from the edge... but he's getting taller so that distance is changing!

The other day, I noticed that he's tall enough to comfortably see over the ledge of our front window.  I remember when Katie was just at around that height.  I love to see these "milestones" reached, but I'm a little sad too.  He's getting older...

And this week when he heard Grandpa coming home, he said, "Bappa just got home!" and I was doing something and not focusing on the COMPLETE SENTENCE he had just SPOKEN till I was like, "Did he just say what I think he said?"  Unbelievable.  He's spoken like this before but it's not often.  It's usually one or two words and usually shoe, or choo choo (for train) so I was blown away.


And something else exciting is coming up!

I put a "wanted" ad up at work for a twin bed for Jake (because we'll need the crib for the baby in... oh, 6 months or so.  Just call me a planner) and someone I work with has furniture they haven't really used from a house they've sold!  A brass twin headboard, a mattress, a box spring AND a dresser with a mirror that we'll use in Katie's room (but don't tell her, I'm keeping it a surprise!) and the bed that she was using will go into Jake's room for him since it's a little more "boy-ish".  I am very excited for Monday when we should be able to get the furniture.  Did I mention that this will be free?  And that there's a big possibility that they will deliver it to... our house?  Just a big pile of awesome to look forward to!

So good things.

Now I just hope my glucose screening went well because when I was pregnant with Jake I had to go back for the 3 hour test.  (It was a nice little vacation - reading magazines, relaxing, nothing to do but wait... to have blood drawn each hour.  Ick.)  I would rather not repeat that experience, and the worry that went along with it.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Katie's Kindergarten Registration? Already?

I got the letter from Katie's elementary school the other day telling me that we're scheduled for kindergarten registration next month.

This seems to be happening just a tiny bit too fast.

I checked off the list of things I needed and, happily, seem to have all of them ready to go.  All except one tiny thing.


The birth certificate.



The birth certificate that I never actually requested... 5 years ago.

Insert gasp here.

Now, I'll admit that it's not hard to return a form.  As a matter of fact, I thought I returned the form waaaaay back when Katie was a tiny baby. 

I realized about 3... years... later that I had not.  When I found the envelope (neatly stamped and addressed) in a planner I rarely (really rarely) use.

And when she was 3 or even 4, I didn't actually need her birth certificate so it wasn't a big deal.  I thought I could get around to it when I had a chance (probably at the same time I requested Jake's since I couldn't tell you if I sent the form in for him either).  And now?  Well NOW I need that birth certificate.  By early March.  So I can bring it to registration.

So I don't have to babble some incoherent explanation about how I didn't send it in when she was born even though I thought I had and when I found out I hadn't, I just didn't think I would need it so soon so I didn't send it in then either and now I sent the form but I have to wait for it to arrive because expediting the delivery and the process would have cost an arm and a leg... as I open a paper bag to breath into.  The kind of explanation I give, when inside my head I'm saying "Shut up already!"

So, I'm going home tonight to check the one place I've managed to successfully store the kids' social security cards and hope that maybe I'll find one certificate for Katie and one certificate for Jake in that same envelope and I'll be able to save the $45 per kid that it would cost to replace them.  You know, $26 for the birth certificate, certified of course, and $19 for the extra copy of the same certified birth certificate that I will keep as a backup. 

Because it's got to be some kind of Murphy's law that if you only order one of something important, you'll lose it...  or someone will cut it up with child scissors. 

BUT if you order two, you're golden.  No one will want anything to do with whatever you've got, as long as there is more than one.  Aaaaaaand as long as it's not candy.  Or anything colorful.  Or dangerous. 

Or any combination of the above.

Monday, February 14, 2011

The kids like to fix stuff with Grandpa

So, about 2 weeks ago we noticed our bathroom sink wasn't draining.  In fact, when we used one of the sinks it would start to fill up and then the other sink would fill up leaving us with two watery sinks.

John and Grandpa both looked at this but neither one could figure it out.  It seemed there was something blocking the pipe.  I thought it might be a cap from something, Katie thought it was a tiny shoe Jake "must have" put down the drain.  (I wasn't ready to lay the blame on Jake too quickly though.  I think that Katie thinks he's a good scapegoat because he doesn't really talk much and isn't able to defend his honor.  Soooo, I take Katie's finger pointing with a grain of salt.  A big one, the size of a salt lick.)

After mulling it over, Grandpa decided he needed to get to the pipe and hopefully the source of the problem.

Through a hole in Jake's bedroom wall.

Grandpa cut a hole in the wall (gasp!), daddy fixed the pipe (whew!), then it was time to patch things up (yay!).

 Katie helped on day 1... Jake held his toothbrushes.

Jacob got more into the process on day 2 (of course, he had just had a bath so he ended up with the mud in his hair and caked on his hands... but he had such fun using the tools and "helping"!) 

This is a "before" picture.  What you didn't get to see is the mud Grandpa put on the wall for him to work with.  I couldn't watch.  I have a big aversion to messes that I can't immediately clean up and this had the makings of a BIG mess.  But the kids had a ton of fun working with Grandpa.  (Jake was not a ton of fun once it came time to clean him up.  He did not want to let go of the tools of the trade.)


In other news, Katie went to cubbies (she's wearing pink pants with hearts to match her pink shirt with hearts... and her red dressy coat she got with her Christmas dress... two years ago.  Her cubbies vest completed the ensamble.  And her winter coat, that I didn't think would go over this, fit fine.


While she was at cubbies, we (me and Jake) went to Bakers Square with Grandma.  Jake ate fries and french toast.  Happy camper.  AND we each got a slice of free pie.  YUM.  Jake gave mommy his slice of pie.  He didn't tell me to eat it in so many words, but I know he would have wanted me to have it.  He's sweet like that.


That was last week.  I'm happy to report that the bathroom sink has stayed fixed and nothing else has broken, and I would like to say that we've been drama free ever since... but I can't. 

See, there was a tiny bottle of purple nailpolish... and a sweet almost-5-year-old girl... but that's another post.