Thursday, December 29, 2011

Possible New Tradition

Disclaimer: I did not support this (or stop it) in any way.

For Pman's first Christmas we went to this small little church near my parents' house.  We are Catholic, the church is Episcopal.  We are not overly religious, so we are mostly okay with blurring the line a bit.  Including my family and Wee-P and the priest and his wife, there were maybe 8 people in attendance.  We sat in the choir pews.

Here is a little bit of background information.  When a child is born Catholic they are Baptised shortly after their birth.  Then they typically go to Sunday school or CCD or something similar to learn about God and prepare to receive their First Communion (Body and Blood of Christ) around age 7.

Parker is 3 and a half, as you will note from a recent post.

This past Christmas, we found ourselves at that same church from our first Christmas as a family of 3.  This time, including our family of now 4, there were maybe 15 people.  Again, we sat in the choir pews and had actual input as to what songs we sang and when we sang them.  It made for an informal, homey service.

When the priest got to the part where he blessed the Body and Blood of Christ, he called all 15 of us to come stand with him at the alter.

The priest pulled out a little step stool and asked Pman to join him on the raised platform, through the prayer and blessing.  P went up and made me stand (awkwardly) on the steps around their heightened area.

The priest blessed the Body (bland pressed wafer) and Blood (cheap sherry).  Then he dipped the Body in the Blood and handed it to P.

My sweet son put it in his mouth, and promptly pulled out half of it and placed it quietly and lightly on the table in front of him.

A beat or two later, the priest dipped ANOTHER wafer into the sherry and this time P took a bite and handed the dry part to me saying, "I don't like this part."

Indeed, I'm sure you don't.

In a incident that can only be described as sheer insanity, the priest once again dipped a third blessed wafer into the alcohol and handed it to P.

He happily ate the whole thing.

Have you ever seen the Vitameatavegamen episode of "I Love Lucy"?  This chain of events mimicked Lucy's commercial..  I fully expected P to grab the cup from the priest and toss back a large gulp- thankfully that did not happen.

Then the priest said, "Somewhere my [priest teacher] is rolling over in his grave.  No wait, I can't say that because as far as I know he is still alive."

Well now, this is one church service I will never forget.  I think Parker will be begging to go to church from now on.  Jokes on him when the next priest is not so willy nilly with the Eucharist.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Mom of the Year...?

Some babies take about 2 naps a day.  One in the morning, usually about two hours after they wake up and another one some time in the afternoon or evening- maybe even two in the afternoon or evening.

I am not a mommy who likes to cater to these morning naps. There are enough things I introduce to my baby knowing that I will be taking them away at some point- bottles, breastfeeding, cribs, pureed carrots. 

We mommies fight and work and cry in an effort to get our babies used to bottles.  Then we are told to take them away at around 12-18 months, sending us back into the tug of war between the object and our babe.

So morning naps, you will have no hold over me- unless it works out to my advantage.

Let me be clear, if we are home and SBG needs a nap at 10a.m. I will put her in her crib and let her sleep it out.  However, if we are already out and I need to go to the grocery store I am not above giving her a bottle in the car, strapping her in the Bjorn and rolling through aisles 1-20 at my local market.

The pay off is SBG can sleep through almost anything and anywhere.

When Pman was a baby I would let him catch a cat nap in my arms while I sipped coffee then we would head off to the gym when he woke up- very similar.

Today, I am home with the kiddos and we did not have anything planned, so SBG took a morning nap in her crib and Pman asked if we could make Christmas cupcakes.  "Why yes indeedy my little sweetie."

In a series of events truly not blogworthy, P ended up throwing a fit about something so insignificant that I can barely remember how it started.

He started sobbing.

I calmly told him the thing he was upset about was not worth the tears.  "Go sit down." I said , "settle down and come back and tell me when you need."

More tears.  More high pitched wails.

I said, "Parker either calm down and stop crying or maybe you should go take a nap."

"Ok."

He grabbed his elephant off the couch and headed upstairs.  When I asked him where he was going he told me he was going to take a nap.

AND HE DID! He put himself down for a nap at 10:45, more than 2 hours before his normal nap time.

WILLINGLY!  He slept for nearly and hour.

This means either I am damn good at this mother thing or Parker would rather take a nap then talk to and hang out with me.

Merry Christmas?...

Friday, December 16, 2011

Four

Recently someone asked Parker how old he was.  "Three and a half." He replied matter of factly. 

Truly, his half birthday- if there is such a thing- is Christmas Eve.  Then it will just be six months until his fourth birthday.

When he was SBG age, I was one of the few mom's I knew who was looking forward to his first birthday.  I was excited to meet that milestone.  Some mommies seemed to view that first birthday as the sad ending of a stage or bonding time.  I looked at it as a date marking survival. 
I survived my first year of mommyhood.  My marriage survived that first grueling year of sleeplessness, snappy attitudes and general preoccupation with all things baby.

While there were many great parts of the first year that I wouldn't return even if I had the receipt, I was glad to move onto the next stage.

That is pretty much how I approached all of his birthdays. 

I have a very good friend who does not have children (yet).  She pointed out to me recently that every time she asks about Parker my answer is always the same, "This stage is my favorite."  It's true, it just keeps getting better.

However, when I was standing there as Pman told the stranger that he was three and a half, I was struck by the closeness of his fourth birthday.  In that moment my heart suddenly started racing and my eyes felt like they were burning in a pre-teary sort of way. 

Four. 
I want to through a lasso- well first learn how to lasso- around that fourth birthday and dig my heels in the ground kicking up all kinds of imaginary dust in an effort to delay its approach.  I'm not sure why this birthday has hit me this way. 

Maybe it's because that will be the last year I can play fast and loose with his school schedule- in by 9-ish out by 4-ish.  Maybe it's because we are one year closer to Kindergarten and then he is basically off to college and raising a family of his own.  Once he is in school five days a week I will have to squeeze Mommy-time in around weekend sports, birthday parties and homework.

When I get Pman up in the morning he usually says the same thing, "Is it not a school day? I wanna stay in my jammies a little bit longer." 

I completely understand his desire to hold onto that comfy, present moment just a little bit longer.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

SBG

The other day I was feeling like I was forgetting something. 
Do I need more formula? No.
Did I leave laundry in the dryer?  No, that's not it. 
Oh crap, I left the iron on! I admit, I laughed after this thought- silly self, you don't iron!

What could it be? The kiddos are fed and happy.
The dog set up camp in a sunny spot on the foyer floor.
Josh was watching football and cheering (or cursing depending on plays) while drinking a beer.

The blog! I'm totally forgetting about the blog!
Before P2 was born I used to aim to blog about once a week.  However, now that my life has taken a different shape, it is not possible for me to stick to that odd self imposed requirement.

SBG is 5 months old.  She coo's and scream/screeches at us-some times its happy other times it is something quite different than happy.  We call her "The Boss."

She has had major blow out diapers and recently started eating- nay thoroughly enjoying baby food- carrots seem to be her favorite. 

SBG can sit on her own in a tripod fashion and she will roll over, but only if she is in the mood.  Her favorite pass times include watching Pman bounce around the room, blowing raspberries and taking baths.

When Pman was her age, I felt like each one of these things were blog-worthy.  Everything single little movement or development or discovery was something everyone in the blogesphere should and wanted to know about.  For that I will apologize.  I now realize I wrote way too much about my infant son's poop.

All babies meet these milestones and in the bigger picture of milestones, these are kind of small potatoes.  Walking, talking, learning letters, singing songs- those are the biggies.  I love and appreciate my time with her in a way I was not able to when Pman was her age because I am so much calmer this time.

I know her baby moments are fleeting and I do not need to document every second via online journaling.  These moments are best enjoyed in real time.

I just hope when she is older and reading these silly blog entries she does not feel slighted.  I hope she understands when Pman was a Weeman, he had no other competition for blog entries, which is why they were all about him. 

And truthfully SBG, you keep me on my toes a bit more than P1 did, so who has time to blog at least once a week.

Rest assured Missy Messy Face, I foresee many (many) blog entries as you grow, develop and continue to generally boss the rest of us around.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Family Picture

When I was growing up, we never took any family pictures. Well, none that were planned a bit ahead of time and involved coordinating outfits. 

We did not have a framed poster sized print of all of us hanging above the mantel, or anything really, in our living.  There were pictures will all the kids and one parent or the other, but none or very few where we are all present. 

Now that I have my own family, it is important to me to get a semi-professional family picture taken every year.  I think somewhere in my head, I want to be able to stack years of family pictures one on top of another and flip through them like a cartoon motion book.

Like some kind of youtube video where men show you how their beards grow over the course of a year in a flash or pregnant women show viewers the evolution and growth of their bellies all in mere moments.

I will call this yet to be created project- Family in Motion.

This past weekend I decided that I Sunday was the day for a family photo, in part because snapfish was having a sale on photo cards and in part because it was a very beautiful day.  I harangued my neighbors into taking a few shots in the yard.  In most of them either P was looking in the wrong direction. 
In this one, Josh and I seem to be looking a bird, or perhaps our clogged gutters, but the kids are both looking at the camera, so there is it.

My issue now is, do I hang all these family photos? I feel I could create some kind of overwhelming wallpaper situation.  "Look at my family.  LOOK AT THEM. Here were are in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 et cetera et cetera et cetera."

Here is the 2011 version, to be displayed on a Christmas card possibly headed your way in a few short weeks.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Eleven and a Half Minutes

A year ago today I ran my first official 10K.  I referenced the run here.

Once I found out I was pregnant I stopped running, per my doc's request.  I told her I did not want to be on bed rest for 4 weeks like I was with Pman.  She said, "Don't run pregnant." I said, "Ok."

After SBG was born, in early July, and I was given the all clear to run by my doc, I did.  I started running in mid-August. 

A friend of mine, who never really ran before, signed up for the 5K version of the 10K I ran the year before.

I promised I would sign up too and we could do it together.  She had a baby 2 months before me. it was going to be a run to kick off Operation: Shed Baby Weight.  However, as I started training, I realized the runner in me was super eager to be released. 

Instead of signing up for the 5K, I signed up for the same 10K I ran just a year before.  Leading up to the race, my right leg started hurting- like can't put weight on it, hobbling around the house hurting, but I was not about to let that stop me from reaching my goal. 

On the morning of the race, my friend and I woke up early and drove to the race location to pick up our numbers and complimentary ugly race t-shirts (gray and brown- ick).  We were cold and tired, but very excited. 

As we waited for the race to start, we ragged on some of the other runners, within the privacy and safety of my MV.  We went to the bathroom-twice. Then asked a fellow runner to take our pre-race photo. Once the proper amount of photos were taken to ensure we both looked our pre-race, early morning best, we each swung our legs in a pendulum motion,in an effort to warm up. 

Then we headed toward our respective starting lines.

The gun fired and we were off.

I began the familiar trail through the woods, I thought a lot about where I was the year before.  I had an inkling of an idea that I was pregnant, but hadn't taken the test yet. 

As I ran this morning I thought of my babies.  Of my family.  Of how my running will (hopefully) keep me healthy enough to be around for a very long time, allowing me to witness the fruits of my labor, blossom.

I thought about how at that very moment a year before we were just a family of three and now we are a family of four.  Just like that.

Then I thought of one of my very best friends.  While I was running a 10K in the freezing cold, she was running her first half marathon in Georgia.  When my running got tough, I would chant to myself, "If she can do that, I can surely suck it up and get through my race."

And I did.

With nearly exactly the same time, literally within seconds, of my time last year.  I think I was probably 5th to last to cross the finish line for the 10K.  The racers who crossed about the same time I did were old enough to be my grandparents.  At first, as the finish line came into my view, and I saw who my comrades were, I was disappointed in myself. 

Then I remembered, the date of the race.  The date marked my baby's fourth month on this earth.  I ran my race with an eleven and a half minute mile. 

I am going to allow myself that victory.  I am going to celebrate it.  I am even proud of myself.

After I finished the race a woman I did not know, tapped me on the shoulder.  She said, "I just want you to know, you were my inspiration.  There were times I just didn't think I could keep running, but I could see you, so I just kept going.  Thank you."

All I could do was put my hand over my mouth, make some silly comment about my yellow shirt being very visible from a great distance and then I just simply said, "Thank you." 

We both had tears in our eyes. If you do not run, that will sound incredibly silly. Running is an emotional sport.  It's not about fashion.  It's not about competition, other than with yourself. It's just pure and simple and challenging and exhilarating.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Warning: You May Puke

A couple weeks ago I was talking to one of the sisters about things that gross us out. Why do people do this to themselves? Talk about the very things that make us itchy and cause us to throw up in our mouths a little.

Some questions just do not have answers.

My sister reminded me of something our mother told us a long time ago.  Our mom stepped on a spider in our garage and when she did many spider babies scattered throughout the  the area.  Ick.

A week after we have this conversation about all things creepy, crawly and skeeveworthy my sister spots a large spider outside her office door.  Some of you loyal reader may remember this entry about her store catching on fire a little bit ago.

As she was leaving work she spotted a spider- very large and furry is how she described it to me.  She turned back into the store, grabbed TWO phone books and headed back toward Charlotte's evil twin. She dropped one book on the spider, heard a noise and "hundreds" of spiders babies ran in all directions, including into the store because the door was open.

The phone book blow to the, she now realized, pregnant spider was not fatal, however.  My sister slammed it with the second phone book.

The mama spider was toast, but even more spider babies scampered out and around.

My sister snatched up her two pups and dashed into her car, where she sat behind the wheel and screamed.  I wish I could hear this chain of events from the perspective of any of the other owners and workers in the neighboring stores.

The next day she went to work armed with this bug bombing stuff and unleashed the poison at the end of the day. No dogs or children were harmed in the process.

The next day I called her on my way home from work for a spider update and to tell her my own grosser than gross story.  Moments before I called I was eating an apple.  As I took my final bite, as in no bites left on the apple, as in I had eaten the whole apple.  I looked down and there was something in the apple.  Something that moved. 

I spit out the bite in my mouth and tossed the remaining apple core out the window.  I had to fight the puke that was rising in my chest.  I'm not sure what it was because I could not bring myself to investigate.

As I am about to relay both of these stories to Josh, I start with, "Did you tell you Lyn's spider story?"

Josh says, "OOOooO! Before you tell me, did I tell you I found a pregnant spider outside our basement sliding glass door?!"

He was genuinely excited about this news.  He seemed to think I was going to be excited about this as well.

He was wrong.

I launched into threats of calling an exterminator and immediate spider execution.  I was so distraught I never did get to tell him my sister's story.

This morning he assured me he "moved her" to another part of the yard.  This does not make me feel any better and I am more than ready to wage a war against all things spiders, bugs and rodents, even the pregnant ones.

WAR!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Body of Evidence

This is the longest I have ever gone without blogging.  I have missed it so much.  Between teaching an online class, two face to face classes and attempting to raise two smart, witty, socially acceptable and generally well rounded children, I have just had no time.

In the beginning of October I starting taking a boot camp class at the gym. I am the fattest person in this class.  I am okay with this because I am also the only one who delivered a little baby bundle mere months ago.  I run the slowest, take the most breaks and have the least amount of helpful healthy cooking hints to disperse to my fellow boot campers.

There are 8 women in the class with me and half of them have taken this boot camp twice before, meaning this is their third time doing this bootcamp.  Third time.  Who has that money (it's $250 past the gym membership) and time?

It is suppose to start at 10:30a.m. and run until 11:30.  These times seem to be simple suggestions to the two trainers running the camp.  I have an infant who I am trying desperately to get on a napping and eating schedule.  I need to be on. time.

The class will be over at the day after Halloween.  We will have to weigh in and get measured.  We also have to run a mile, do as many push ups as we can in a minute, then sit ups.  Hold the plank position for as long as we can and do this chairless sit thing for an unspecified amount of time. 

On the first day of camp we had to do all these things too and on November 1 we will compare our before and after results.  Thankfully, I set the bar pretty low for myself.  I couldn't help but improve on my times and crunches by the end of an 8 week hellish bootcamp. 

You're welcome self.

The other ladies keep saying to me, "Ohhh, You will probably see the most changes!"  Yea, um, I know what you are saying there missy and I don't appreciate it.

I am able to put on clothes that did not fit 3 months ago.  I am getting closer and closer to my pre-pregnancy weight.

I am learning to love my body though.

This body carried both of my children and endured two c-sections.

My body ran a 10K and the first leg of a marathon during the beginning weeks of pregnancy.

This body runs despite the aches, pains and shortness of breath.  I have a sore right calf, but my body keeps pushing.

Despite slightly saggy triceps, these arms hug the ones I love.

I am able to play chase with Parker and roll on the floor with Peyton.

My finger holds the rings Josh gave me sealing our future together.

I may not always like the way my body looks, but I love what it is capable of.   This is what I chant in my head when my jeans don't. quite. fit.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Dumbest People in America

Confession: Josh and I are in the running for the Dumbest People in America award and we are front running contenders.


A few weeks ago the interior light in my car would not go off. As we drove home from a family trip to the Farmer's Market with the light blazing over head, I could see Josh fuming as he drove home.

When we pulled into the driveway, I swept the kiddos into the house as Josh tackled the owners’ manual of my MV, which we bought brand new less than a year ago. It should also be noted, I have NEVER read the owner manual of the MV or any car I have ever owned for that matter. I like to live dangerously.

Josh stomps in the house mumbling words under his breath. I could not pick out specific words, but if I were a beating lady, I would guess they were not happy words.

Pman saw Josh grab some tools, so armed with his blue and yellow plastic screwdriver and hammer, he followed Josh to the dark driveway in an attempt to fix the light. They both returned to grab a flashlight.

The only one we have is a dinosaur one that roars when it is turned on and projects a beam of light about 3 inches long.

After about 40 minutes, the boys come back inside holding a tiny fuse. Josh turned on the computer. After a few moments of research, Josh tells me that he thinks it is a recall issue with the car and places the fuse in a safe location inside the car (the driver side arm rest). He instructs me to call the dealership on Monday.

Several Mondays later, I do call the dealership. I set up an appointment to bring the car in and also scheduled an oil change and tire pressure check as both of those lights came on in the interm. Josh set up a rental car for me because, "[I] have two kids to deal with all day and I need a car."

His words, not mine. Sweet.  I tried to tell him it was not necessary.

On Tuesday night the kidlettes and I met Josh at the car rental place on his way home from work. The rental process took an hour. Then we headed over to the dealership to drop off my car. At this point we had to switch the car seats from my car to the rental.

Hell is the only word that describes the events that unfolded in the process of transferring those seats. Words were yelled.

People were sweating.

Stomachs were growling.

Babies were crying.

The seats were installed. We moved on with our evening, which included taking the crew out for dinner to share our frustration, tears and general misery with other diners.

The next day at 9:30a.m. the dealership called and this is how the conversation went down:

Dealership: Hi, um Mrs. Phillips? Your car is ready.
Me: Ready? That can't be. Did you fix the light?
D: Yes. We saw the fuse and we plugged it back in and of course the interior light came on...
Interrupting M: Yes. (in this one word I managed to be bitchy, arrogant and entitled- it's a talent)
D: ummhummmum- yes, well. Then we just turned down the interior switch and the light dimmed until it was off.
M: oh. I will be there in an hour to pick up the car. Did you change the oil?

In the end, the evidence shows we rented a car to get the oil changed and we paid $130 for that oil change.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Can a Three Year Old be Tactful?

This past weekend I was walking around a nearby shopping center with my family.  Josh wanted to run into a non-child friendly store, so I strolled around with the kiddos. 

SBG was strapped to my chest thanks to the Baby Bjorn.  Pman asked if we could play his new favorite game, "Run To."  In this game I give him a mark about 7 to 8 feet in front of me, but completely in my line of view, to run to.  He runs to the spot and waits.  When I reach him, I pick a new spot and the cycle continues.

He loves this game.  I'm not sure why.

I love this game because when P runs he looks like a Basilisk Lizard and it makes me giggle.

As we were finding the next "run to" spot, I saw a little person headed in our direction.

I looked at her and glanced down at Pman and just knew my most embarrassing moment was about to unfold in those very moments.

As the small woman approached I saw P's eyes lock on her. 

I braced myself, here is comes, inappropriate and possibly offending comments from a toddler.

However, instead he said, "That's another mommy."

Phew.

He is referencing a bit of advice I recite over and over- If we are out and he cannot find me, he needs to tell a police officer or another mommy.  It's a good line I stole from a good friend. 

In that moment P was telling me the advice I have been dispensing has sunk in and sticking with him. 

I replied, "Yes, Parker, she might be another mommy and if you lost your mommy she would probably help you."

The woman gave a quick smile and kept moving.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Five Years Strong

On Thursday, Josh and I will celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary.

I just love that this:


Led to these:

It's about love, compromise, support and a good sense of humor.  We are all so lucky to have each other.  May everyone reading this, be so lucky too.

Happy Anniversary!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Uneventful?

I have not written in a bit for a few reasons.  One of them being that I am trying to get ready for school- another year, another syllabus calendar to wrestle with.  I loathe a syllabus calendar.

The other, main reason, is things have been pretty calm around here, despite the earthquake, hurricane and nearly 3 days without power all occuring within days of each other.

When I was pregnant with P2 I was so worried and worked up about how I would possibly manage day to day life with two children in tow.  Turns out, it's not so difficult.  It's not easy by any means, but I was pretty worked up.

My kidlettes are almost exactly 3 years apart and that age difference works for me in ways that I can't explain.  I can instruct SBB to go potty, get his shoes and meet me by the front door.  In a few minutes, there he is, shoes on the wrong feet and underwear on both inside out and backwards, but he's there just the same. 

A cartoonishly big grin on his mug as he says, "Mommy.  I followin dyec-rections."

With a fussypant SBG tucked under my arm, we all head out the door to start our day.  Whatever that may entail. 

Yesterday it was the gym, where I instructed Pman to say,"Don't touch my sister."  to the other kiddos, but that it was okay for the ladies in the gym to touch her.  Then we went to Subway for lunch.  Pman and I ate and talked about the Lion King while SBG slept (actually slept!) in the Baby Bjorn strapped to my chest. 

SBB and I giggled at her as my sandwich crumbs, lettuce and a pickle slice slopped onto her fuzzy head.  SBG was none the wiser to the condiment catastrophe as she continued to snooze.

When we got home, I helped Pman out of his car seat and handed him the keys to the house.  He can unlock and open the front door all on his own.

On Tuesday, when I dropped P1 off at school, I found out he will be getting "homework" assignments this year, mostly to practice his letter writing.  I was a bit too excited about this, I will confess.  He is just growing up so much.  So fast.

Then I glanced at my squeaky little lady in my arms.  Drool running down her chin, with only one teeny foot covered by a plush pink sock, the toes on the other foot were exposed and spread out as if she were ready for a pedicure. 

She looked up at me with those long lashes and beautiful blue eyes as I clicked her in her car seat and cooed as if to say. "Thanks mom." and reminding me she is still such a wee little baby bot.

These are my days- ordinary, amazing, small things that make up big moments. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wimp

Here on the Eastern Shore we had an earthquake on Tuesday.  I live in Maryland.  We do not have earthquakes in Maryland.  While my house shook, I said to myself, this feels like what I imagine an earthquake to feel like, but there is no way this is an actual earthquake.

It was.  It registered at about 5.8 to 6.0, depending on which news report you listened to at what ever time.  I think the official final word is 5.8.

Most of the hanging pictures shifted slighted on the walls and an ill placed air freshener fell and broke.  Other than that the devastation and destruction was minimal.  Embarrassingly minimal.

However, the quake did what all natural disasters seem to do to this area- cause a state of frozen in the headlights and, some how also, a cut and run reaction.  I heard stories of grown adults running out of buildings with such forced and speed, their shoes remained where they once stood.

People in the northern part of the country laugh at our grocery lines and school closures at the mere threat of more than 2 inches of snow. 

Floridians and the like give us the stink eye as we prepared to hunker down for the "hurricane" headed our way after their peninsula took the brunt of the blow. 

Sure Hurricane Isabel hit our area pretty hard a few years ago, but then Hurricane Katrina came in like a big fat angry sister and stomped so hard on New Orleans that years later the area still looks broken in an unfixable way. 

Izzy's wrath knocked down several run down water front beach shacks, which were replaced with million dollar water front beach houses.  Katrina victims got Drew Brees- even steven?

We have had a few tornadoes touch down and aside from ripping up a rural road and a greasy spoon restaurant, there was little evidence of the twister.

Also, why are hurricanes named, but not tornadoes, blizzards and earthquakes?

There is one thing we have over all the others though.  I recently was at a restaurant when I heard a man, who's accent told me was from New York, say, "I'm in the seafood capital of the world, so I'm getting seafood."

Seafood capital of the world huh?  I'll take it.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Go Go Go-Kart

Family is the most important thing to me and family traditions make me swoon with nostalgia and comfort. We spent the past weekend visiting my parents and most of my sibs (and soon to be sib-in-laws).

One activity my family has always enjoyed together is go-karting.  We will go kart in the rain, mud or blazing sun. 

When most families get together the day after a wedding for a brunch, mine headed to the go kart track the day after Josh and I said, "I do."

Slick track?  Bring it on.  We laugh uncontrollably at "no bumping" signs. 

I can remember my entire family (dad, siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins) getting kicked off a track after we nearly broke several karts do to...aggressive driving shall we say. 

Other families give us dirty looks as they climbed into their cars to head home after being ramped from all angles by my family.

This weekend, we took Parker to his first go-kart track. 
*Disclaimer- we are all much calmer now, although rain and mud will not deter us from a track.

What can I say, it's in his blood and he is a natural.
Fearless.  Dad, let me show you how this is done.

Bumper cars are not child's play and should be taken very seriously. 
Not to be all helicopter mom about it, but shouldn't these kiddos at least be required to wear some kind of protective head gear?  Bumper cars driven by toddlers, I mean what drunk moron thought that up? Wait, what drunk moron let's their toddler drive a bumper car?  This line of thought is taking an unfortunate turn, let's move on before I shine myself in an even more negative light.

Peyton was less than trilled with the track.  Oh well, maybe next year.  Oooh, 1st birthday at the go-kart track, I bet that's a new one.

That's more like it, lulling about pool side.  That's my girl.


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Read My Hands

When I was in high school I worked with children who had disabilities ranging from deaf to profoundly autistic.  I took sign language classes once a week.  I applied to a college that offered sign language as a major.

I got into the program, but chickened out and ended up dropping the whole sign language thing altogether.  I still remember a lot of it though, and like many people who know a different language, I can understand it better than I can "speak" it.

As I moved into motherhood, I realized sign language has taken on such a life of it's own with the kiddos and mommies.  They (whoever they are) say that teaching your little bean sign language will encourage verbal communication. 

I have to say, based purely on my own thoughts and observations, I disagree.  I have seen children who are very good with the signs, but seem to have little to no verbal skills and it is not because they have a disability. It seems almost like the signs became a crutch or substitute for the verbal language.

If they can get their point across without having to learn actual words, then why learn the words? 
Despite this, when Pman was a wee-bot, I taught him a few signs. I figured since I knew a bit of sign language anyway, might as well jump on board.  I also needed something to stop the grunting and whining coming from both of us.

I only taught him a few words:
Please
Sorry
Eat
All done
More

We only did these until he could speak.  Once he figured out the vocal words, I dropped the signs altogether.  I dropped them, but he did not.

The other day as he asked me for a lollipop, I realized that he, seemingly involuntarily, signed please as he asked. 

My mind flashed forward several years to a full grown Pman in a crowded, loud place with friends, a bar or party maybe.  They are all signing as they are shouting across the room to each other.  None of them really realizing how or why they know these signs, but they do so they use them. 

Kind of like a primitive, instinctual text message.  Like their fingers and hands operated some how both independently and in conjunction with their mouths and brains.

Sometimes I'm sad I did not stick with sign language and I know I can go back to school and maybe one day I will.  For now, I will chuckle to myself every time Pman's hands form fists and bump each other as he asks for more juice. 

I taught him that and it is a part of him now.  And yes, I will also likely teach some of these to SBG as she gets older.  The grunting and whining can really grate on a mommy's nerves.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Dingbat or Genius?

My kids are slow- nay they are indolent (sloth like, lackadaisical, and lazy even) eaters.  When I nursed a baby Parker it took him at least an hour to fill up and he DEMANDED to be fed every two and a half to three hours. Eventually leaving me feeling tethered and trapped.

Saying I tired of nursing quickly with him, is an understatement.  He solely consumed breast milk for 5 solid, glorious...weeks.  Then I introduced formula.  For the next 3 months he got a 50/50 split of formula bottles and either nursed or got pumped milk in a bottle.  Then it was all formula all the time.

Poor SBG was soley on breast milk only while we were in the hospital, a whoping 4 days.  The day we came home I gave her a formula bottle to see how she would process it. 

Success!

Once I was sure all was good, I gave her some formula bottles, some pumped milk bottles, and in a pinch, I nursed.  She is even lazier than Parker when it comes to nursing, which is contradictory because she loves to eat.

Here is why I hate nursing, aside from them taking forever:
1. I feel incredible guilt every time I nurse SBG in front of SBB.  Poor Pman has played alone a lot since SBG was born.  Have you ever tried doing a floor puzzle while nursing an infant? 

2. My boobs are uncomfortable and large.  Too large.

3. (I admit, this is an entirely silly and selfish reason) All my shirts are totally stretched out by the end of the day.

4. She drinks from a bottle MUCH more efficiently.

5. I'm a modest person and although I have a Hooter Hider, I hate nursing even in front of Josh and Parker, let alone in public.

Here is what I have done:
Quit.

I give.  She got my milk for a solid month.  I have a TON of it saved in my freezer.
_________

My milk is nearly dried up, so I gave my remaining breast pads to a friend who is inches away from giving birth to her second son.  I perhaps got rid of them a tad too quickly (and eagerly).

I had a slight leaking issue and was fresh out of nursing pads, so I pulled out the kitchen scissors and some maxi pads.

For some reason, I have quite a collection of maxi pads, despite the fact that I do not willingly use maxi pads reguarly.  (TMI?  I'll stop.)

A little snip here, a little snip there- BAM my maxi pads have become homemade nursing pads.

BONUS: They are super sticky and stay put better than any nursing pad I have ever used! 

As I went about my day, grocery shopping, picking Pman up from school and going back to the grocery store to get the milk I forgot, I can't help but think, "What if I got in an accident and go to the hospital and they have to cut off my clothes and they see maxi pads in my bra?" 

Will they say:

1. "Gee, this is one innovative lady!  We must save her at once, who knows what creative potential she holds!" 

OR

2. "Just another local dingbat.  Should we check her blood alcohol levels, or just assume the obvious- she's totally wasted?"

*P.S.  To breastfeed or not is totally a personal choice.  No hate mail please.

Monday, August 1, 2011

It Takes a Strong Woman

Since the day I came home from the hospital, I have had someone around to help out with the kiddos- Josh, my mom, my dad and younger sister. 

Today is the first day I have them both on my own.  I was nervous about this day mostly because I did not want Parker to get too bored or spend his day watching cartoon after cartoon.  We can both take only so much Sprout.

SBG woke up earlier than normal, but thankfully went back to sleep.

SBB woke up later than normal.

My stress was already increasing. 

The kiddos were setting the stage to be off all day, eating at different times, sleeping at different times going into melt down mode at different times.  Things righted themselves, as they do and my worries were put to rest. 

I was even able to shower AND brush my teeth while SBB squeeze toothpaste all over the counter in my bathroom and SBG sat in her baby seat looking around the bathroom as if she trusted no one.

She has this face she makes- her eyebrows shoot up and her eyes dart around the room like she is plotting her escape because clearly the people around her are not fit to be in her presence.  Sorry chica, you are stuck with us.

Then I grabbed my coupons, a pacifier and put a little Kahlua in my insulated coffee mug and headed out the door. (I'm kidding about one of those.) 

My goal?

Grocery shop.  Alone.  With BOTH kiddos.  Did I mention we left the house about 30 minutes before SBG was due to eat again?  Not smart.

When it was all said and done we saved over $65 with my coupons. 

SBB managed to fall twice in the store.  He is fine and actually laughed both times, but the falls were total wipe outs landing him flat out on the ground.

He also had to use the potty twice while we were there.  The first time was shortly after we entered the store- no biggie.  The second time he announced he had to go, we were in the checkout line with every single item from our cart piled onto the belt.  The lady in front of us, of course, was having some kind of issue causing us to have to wait that much longer for a manger to conduct an override at cashier 5.

While we waited for the override Peyton screamed and Parker danced around singing the alphabet in an effort to distract himself. 

I was thisclose to just walking out the door, sans groceries and allowing Pman to do his thing in the parking lot.

After paying and making a mad dash to the bathroom, again, we finally got to the car.  SBB climbed in his seat and as I was prying SBG out of the Baby Bjorn, I realized she was minus a sock.

I give.

Feeling defeated, I heeved myself into the driver's seat and checked my phone.  I had a few missed texts.

Text #1: Oh look my friend had her baby.  This is her third baby and the pregnancy was trying, from the very beginning, to say the least.  She had been on hospital bed rest since 33 weeks and everyone was doing what they could to make sure the baby stayed put until 35 weeks- the safety zone.  The little baby had other plans and came about a week shy of the 35 week goal.

Text #2: (From her husband) The baby was sent to the NICU, which they expected if it came before 35 weeks.  It is sad, but they knew it was likely and his issues seems to be minor in a big picture kind of way. 

Text #3: My friend is in the ICU.  Without putting all her business on my blog, there was a lot of blood loss and other scary things.  She did get to see her baby though, which is a huge gift, given her situation.

Talk about perspective.  I glanced at my children in my rearview and my eyes filled with stinging tears.  Wow, I am lucky.

When we got home, I brought in the groceries and only put away the milk.  I let the rest of the food sit on the table.  I gave SBG a bottle, while SBB cuddled next to me on the couch and watched a little TV.  I did not worry about lunch or the groceries, instead I let myself be totally present in the moment with my kids.

Hang in there friend.  Your children are lucky to have you and this time next year you will all be that much stronger for having gotten through this together.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Mama's New (Old) Clothes

I have one rule after I birth a child.

The rule: No more maternity clothes after the baby has vacated my body.

I am very strict about this rule.  If it has a stretchy front belly panel or billows in any way around the abdominal area, it is banished to the pregnancy bin.  (It still remains to be seen when, if ever, this bin will be reopened.)

This means I spend most of my post pregnancy days in yoga pants and shirts that would otherwise be gym shirts, or ones that are at least larger than I care to admit.  I do have some pants that do not have an elastic waist band and still fit, but the digits, yes plural, on the tags of those pants do not make me smile.

I have taken my sit stand stroller out for a maiden voyage around the neighborhood and SBG seemed to be down for the ride.  The next day I took SBB and SBG BOTH, at the same time, by myself, out for a walk around the neighborhood and they both did well again.  So did I actually, it took about an hour, but there are lots of hills.  And I was pushing about 50 pounds of stroller and kids.

This is the only workout I am allowed to partake in at this time.  Around mid August, I should be given the all clear to run again.  At which point, I have high hopes that I will be able to fit into my normal clothes, post haste and quick! 

People are so kind, telling me how great I look, just two weeks out from delivery, but really I know what I look like and great is not the word to describe it.

I do not mean to sound like some kind of post pregnancy jelly belly martyr and at last check (although I did just eat a cookie) I am less than 20 pounds away from my pre pregnancy weight. I also gained less weight with SBG than I did with SBB.  I just know how many miles on the treadmill are ahead of me and I am just itching to get started.

Right now, I am nursing (which I hear is suppose to help you lose baby weight, which I think is total crap) but I hate it, so I feel that may be coming to an end sooner rather than later.  SBG is a great nurser, I just hate it.  I also hate nursing bras.  I feel the same about breast pumps.

So, my maternity clothes are packed.  My post-pregnancy big girl clothes hang in my closet with my normal clothes on deck.  My ipod is charged and ready to roll.

Once I am given the all clear to run, I will celebrate by purchasing a new pair of running shoes
 that will help me get into my old clothes.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Special Delivery: SBG Peyton

On July 5, 2011, I woke up and got dressed.  Then I went into Parker's room to get him ready for school.  We did our normal morning routine then Josh and I got into his car and my mom and Pman got into our MV. 

We were headed to the hospital, they were headed to school. 

Before we left, I tried desperately to soak up the last bits of time with Pfunk.  I sniffed his head.  Kissed his face incessantly.  Told him I loved him so much, he stopped answering me back.

I'm not sure why I was so hellbent on reassuring him (or me) that nothing was going to change- I was going to the hospital to have a baby, but he will always be my Sweet Baby Boy (SBB).  When I was pregnant, P1 and I read a book called "Will You Still Love Me?"  It is about loving the first baby even after the second baby comes. 

To say I teared up every time we read it is a drastic understatement.

Once we were at the hospital, we checked in and of course got the new girl and the process took a long time. She kept apologizing and I said, "It's fine, but if I was standing here with broken water, I would probably not be so patient."

We wandered over to the maternity ward to get set up for the c- section.  Josh and I were even laughing at the size of his giant coffee and the fact that the check-in point and the maternity ward were so far away from each other and yet a wheelchair was not even offered.

We were the first c-section appointment of the day and no one was in labor at all when we got to the nurses station.  When I walked up to this very same desk when I was in labor with Pman, I was...welcomed...by the blood curdling screams of various women in full blown labor.

This time I walked over to several nurses engaged in a hushed conversation and said, "Hi! I'm here to have a baby!"

They got me a gown, an IV, fetal monitor and compression hose.

The gown is what it is- drafty at best.

I hate needles, so after the nurse inserted the IV she wrapped red sticky gauze around my wrist so I could not see the insertion site.  She's good people.

Then another nurse came in and put compression hose on my legs.  Incidentally, putting thick panty hose on another person has to be one of the most difficult tasks to complete. Especially when the someone is already sweaty with anticipation.  Then she slid on two things that looked like air casts over the hose. Then blue plastic bags.

I started sweating so bad that I thought I was going to pass out. They took off the bags and put a 1980's oscillating fan on high and aimed it right at me.  Awesome.

When the time came I walked into the OR flanked by the two nurses.  I hoisted myself onto the surgical table.  I clung to the nice nurse with the red sticky gauze as the Anesthesiologist plunged hard core drugs into my spine.

Warmth.

Numbness.

Nausea, again.

The curtain went up, Josh came in.  Everything got familiar, but scary.  I could glance over at Josh who sat in a stool just behind my head.  I knew we were both thinking the same things.  I knew we both needed this little girl to be healthy.

I felt tugging and pressure, which was followed by blood splattering on the sheet curtain in front of me and on the face mask of my OB.  Then crying.  Beautiful crying from my SBG Peyton.

As she was cleaned and assessed, I was stitched back together.  Then I was wheeled to recovery and Josh followed Peyton to the nursery.  We both bounced back quickly and within 45 minutes I was nursing her while still in recovery.

The following 3 days we stayed in the hospital with the most doting and attentive nurses.  Parker came for visits with my parents, but it was never enough.

We are home now and honestly much calmer than we were when Parker was an infant.  P1 is absolutely in love with his sister.  We are trying to figure out her night time schedule.

She is back up to her birth weight (within one week, which apparently is amazing, but really this girl likes to eat!)

I love Peyton, of course, she is amazing, but I'm really missing my Mommy and Parker time.  Josh and I are trying to make sure he feels like a part of all this.  Trying to make sure he knows he is loved now just as much as he ever was, maybe more than ever actually.  I want him to know everyone in the family has a special place for him, and P2, in their hearts and nothing will change that.

Last night I was giving P2 a bottle on the couch while P1 laid with his head in my lap.  P1 talked to me about whatever was on his mind at the time.  Occasionally he would lift his head, say hi to P2 and pat her head or tickle her feet.

Amazing moments.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Before and After

The Phillips Family before:

Taken the night before Peyton came.


The Phillips family now:



A newbie Parker:


A newbie Peyton:

Sibling love

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Happy 4th of July!

As of the posting of this blog, we are about 43.5 hours away from meeting Sweet Baby Girl Peyton.  She is doing a great job of staying put, although I am paying the price with terrible indigestion and bladder pressure. 

Last night Josh enjoyed a beer on the deck after Parker went down for the night.  This time next week, I will be able to join him should the mood strike me.

Parker's energy level has taken an untimely and inconvenient upward turn.  Go go go is his moto these days.  his makes both Josh and I very nervous about how we will deal with him and SBG in the coming weeks. 

I have high hopes for the Percocets I will likely be given post c-section to keep me at least awake and somewhat mobile when I come home from the hospital.

In the meantime, we are enjoying our last few moments as a family of 3.  Parker would like to know how you take your grilled Cheetos?


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

One Week Out

If all goes as planned (ha!), this time next week I will be kissing my sweet baby girl's face.

So one week out, here is a picture of me in all my pregnantness.

Who needs make-up?
  • My wedding rings don't fit.
  • My hospital bag is packed.
  • Thank God it's flip flop season!
  • Curse all that is good because it is also bathing suit season.
  • Humidity is my enemy and the AC is never cool enough.
  • Food sounds good, but more than a few bites makes me unbelievably uncomfortable.
  • And pressure...oh the intense, constant pressure.  My younger sister, who does not have children of her own yet, asked my mom if by "pressure" did I mean it feels like I always have to drop the kids off in the pool.

Uh- no.

To her, and anyone else who is wondering, for me pressure is more like kegel exercises (look it up, I'm not getting into anatomy on this blog) mixed with a urinary tract infection.

**HAPPY THOUGHTS**

On Parker's birthday we took him to the movies to see the Cars 2.  This is the first time he has been to a movie theatre. 

Between the two of us, honestly, mostly him, we visited the bathroom 5 times through the course of the film.  I can not give you may details of the movie, but I can describe every stall in the ladies bathroom to a T.  Also, I cannot pick Pman up for him to wash his hands at the adult height sinks, so I went through nearly an entire pack of antibacterial hand wipes in lieu of hand washing.

Desperate times...

We were in the theatre long enough for P to spill all of his popcorn on the ground though- bonus!

After the movie, he wanted to ride the "rides" (read: those cheapo quarter rides you generally find outside of Kmart stores that just bob up and down or shift herky jerky style from left to right.)  Then he got mint ice cream with gummi bears mixed in- ick. 

Between the movie and the quarter rides and gummi mint ice cream, which do you think he liked best?

If you guess movie, you obviously do not have a three year old.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

P is 3

Happy Birthday Parker!

In three short years you have taught me the following things (and much more).  Ok, so that first year did not feel so short at times, but seriously, I can't believe it's been three years.  How did I live nearly 28 years without your smiling face in my life?

Things I Learned (or was reminded of) From Parker:

1. Celebrate small accomplishments

2. Listen to the same song over and over if you feel like it

3. Forgive those you love easily and quickly

4. Virtually anything can be turned into a toy- anything

5. Starting your day with chocolate milk is almost as good as starting it with coffee

6. Sometimes hot dogs make for a great breakfast

7. Explore the unusual

8. Books are comforting

9. Where you start out does not necessarily dictate where you end up

10. Love transcends morning sickness



video





Tuesday, June 21, 2011

I Love You This Much

Cookie Monster- A Photo Journal

I fancy myself a somewhat crafty person.  That is until I tackle projects like the one below.  I have creative ideas, I just struggle on the execution portion of these projects.  I am working on a kick ass video for P's upcoming birthday, so stay tuned.

I saw a picture of a Cookie Monster cupcake and got inspired to make them for P to take to school on his upcoming third (how is it possible) birthday. 

I asked his teacher how many students would be at school on cupcake day.

What would you guess- 15?

24?

Hows about 29! 

That is nearly a box and half of cake mix.  Yes I said box, what did you think I was going to these cupcakes from scratch?
Stage 1


Stage 2
Blue fingers, blue icing, blue food coloring splatters on the WHITE kitchen table.  Who needs a drop cloth?  

Question: What happens when a very pregnant lady is home alone with about 2 (very full) tablespoons of blue icing left over after icing an insane amount of cupcakes around lunch time?

Answer: Lunch is served?


Stage- whatever.  Three is it? Maybe four.  Either way the eye's have it!

















Here is what I was aiming for-

Here is what P ended up with-


Happy (early) Birthday Pman!  Check back on Friday for the bday video.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Sweet, Inside and Out

Parker has some hobbies or traits that are so typical boy.  For example, he loves to pick up bugs.  He did not learn this from me, the person he is with more than any other.  Instead, it just seems to come natural- if there is a bug on the ground, it will end up in his hand. This is how he got stung by a bee for the first time.  He tried to pick it up from a flower.

He seeks out worms, which he still calls jolly happy souls.  We are not really sure where that came from, the best we can figure is he got the lphrase from the "Frosty the Snowman" song, but how and why he has connected that to worms is beyond us.  He even has a net he carries around the front yard to trap and contain any JHS he finds.

We recently, and accidentally, found a bevy of baby fart video's on youtube.com and I tell you few things thrill him more than watching babies fart.

Parker's latest favored pastime seems to be sticking things in holes.  Mainly the holes in his face.  Impressively he can get about a third of a granola bar in his nose.  Thankfully, he is also an efficient nose blower, although I'm sure a few rice grains and such slipped down the back of his throat.

Yesterday, when I picked him up from school, I was helping him put on his shoes when I noticed dark...stuff that looked like dried blood...pouring out of his ears.  I have terrible ears and have had burst ear drums in the past.  My mind(and heart)  immediately went into panic mode.  His ear drums burst!

But wait, he is still smiling and asking if we can get a slurpee on the way home.  Not what I would expect from someone in pain, even P.  The teachers and I tried to do some quick troubleshooting, which concluded with me picking up P and telling them I was going to call the doc and that I would be in touch.

We got to the car, I buckled him in and stuck my pinky in his ear, swiped some of the stuff and then smelled my finger- you mom's understand, otherwise I know that is totally gross. 

Chocolate.

Chocolate?

Oh right, I made him some trail mix and put it in his lunch.  The trailmix contained about a tablespoon of chocolate chips.

I dashed back into the school told the teachers about my findings.  We chuckled. 

Back in the car I started wondering how far and how many chips he shoved in his ear canal.  He was mum about the whole thing, so I called his doctor, who was about the close for the day, but told me to swing by just in case.

We concluded after 10 Q-Tips that he likely stuck 2 chips in his right ear and 1 in his left.  Nothing went in far enought to do any damage.  We also concluded this is just the beginning. 

Peyton, I will do my best to keep your nose and ears out of your brother's reach.  You are on your own in the jolly happy soul department.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Countdown Time

Today is June 5, 2011.  In exactly one month, unless a certain someone has a plan of her own- Peyton, I'm looking at you, my little girl will be here.  On Saturday, we had a little family party for her pending arrival.  We have a few final weekend plans before she comes, but we are pretty much ready to roll, well as much as a person can be because any second (+) time mom knows you are never really ready.

Here I am, exactly 1 month before go time.  Arms are beefy.  Skin is questionable.  This stretchy black dress IS my best friend.


Here is proof of how pulled together we are.  I have sanded, stained and re-knobbed a dresser, washed and folded each tiny onsies and cried over the curtains.  Cried. I do still have one more small load of laundry to do and I need to pack the hospital bag.  Josh has to assemble the crib mobile and figure out the sit stand stroller, but Peyton, we are ready for ya!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Holy Vial Batman

For those of you who are also my facebook friends, this post is not anything new.  I just do not want to forget this story and this is where I keep track of my stories.  Since the other day I went to Home Depot and forgot my wallet, only to find it sitting on the front passenger seat of my car in plain sight in a not so great part of town, I am afraid I will also forget this gem of a story.
When Parker was in the NICU, he was baptised by the Priest On Call (POC).  He was a nice man, but I had never met him before and have not seen him since.  The day Parker was baptised was the first time I got to hold him- 5 days after he was born and 2 days before his surgery.
After the baptism, the POC gave me the washcloth he used to wipe P's head, a vial of the Holy Water he used and a certificate of the Baptism.
Josh and I are not overly religious people.  We believe in God and we believe in raising our children (loosely) according to our religious backgrounds. 
Babies born with Parker's condition are usually in surgery for about 2 to 3 hours and have an average hospital stay of 40+ days. 
Parker was in surgery for about an hour and was out of the hospital within 15 days.  I'm not sure about the direct link between the baptism and the quick recovery.  He had a lot of people from different walks of life praying for him and thinking about him at that time.
This past weekend we finally got our acts together (read: my parents came down and offered their services because my frequent freak out calls were getting old) and finished up P1's room and put together essential elements of P2's room.  Included in this endeavor was switching the dressers.
In the process, I took all of P1's clothes out of his "baby" dresser and put them on the floor.  Pman took it upon himself to sort them.  He informed me that a shirt he got for his birthday last year was no longer wearable because it's a "baby shirt".  The shirt fits, mind you.
He also found the vial of Holy Water.  I took it from him and tilted it gently this way and that watching the water bubble move up and down the tiny pinkish, plastic vial.
I held it in my hand and thought a bit about that day.  Then I put the vial back down. 
When I picked it back up, moments later, to place it back in the sock drawer, where all Holy Water should be kept, there was no more water in it.  I looked on the carpet where he was to see if there was a water spot.  Nope.
"Parker, did you spill the water out of this?"
"No.-- I drinked it."
"You drank the water that was in here?"
"Yes.  I's fursty."
Perhaps the ingestion of HW will improve his grammar.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Cultlike

Confession: Josh and I joined a cult last weekend.

When I was in college I took a class in my final Fall semester called Broadcast Journalism, BJ class for short.  When those of us in BJ class would casually mention something to the affect of, "I have to go edit this piece for BJ class."  or  "I would love to join you for a drink, but I have an interview for BJ class."

The eyes of the people not enrolled in this class would bug out of their respective skulls.  "The college has a class for that?"

When we would reference the need to work on our package for BJ class, those not in the know would just fall right over in a state of shock- stunned that they had some how missed out on enrolling in this class.

Last Sunday, Josh and I took advantage of a BJ's,coupon for a free membership, we received in the mail.  Once again, BJ's is not what it seems to those of you gutter minded readers.  BJ's is a wholesale store similar to Costco and Sam's Club.  Generally speaking these are larger than life buildings full of everything legally sold in the United States. And I'm sure there are some illegal things available as well.

When I was growing up, my parents belonged to a similar store called Price Club.  They also had 4 active children in the house and a pool.  This means we had many (many) impromptu pool parties all summer, requiring our pantry to be fully stocked and ready to entertain always.

Josh and I do not have a pool and as of right now we only have 1 P who is fine consuming 2 bites of waffle, a quarter of a PB&J and 1 pepperoni from a slice of pizza for the day.  Josh is also intensely against all things memberships and warranties. 

I know whenever these things are presented to me, to just say, "No." 

So, armed with our free membership coupon we headed off into the depths of the mega super store to purchase items for a family party we are having in the next few weeks.  We arrived an hour before lunch time, thinking that was reasonable.  We no intentions of committing to the store past this trip to stock up for the party.
That is not how it turned out.We were there for nearly two hours.  Between Parker and I, we took 5 bathroom breaks and opened at least 4 items in our cart to nosh on in the store.  Josh, who did not partake in our cart buffet, was STARVING about half way through the trip.  He would not allow me to purchase anything perishable because he NEEDED to go out to lunch before we got home and did not want anything to spoil in the car. 

We did come away with a bag of veggie straws the size of Parker, a life time supply of Goldfish crackers that will likely become heirlooms in our family line and a scary amount of baked beans- scary amount.
After all that we still need to make another trip back to the overwhelming hellhole to purchase the party perishables.Thankfully, we left the store with full-fledged membership cards in our hands- yep Josh caved.  We are now officially members of the BJ club.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Bullying

Confession: I am being bullied.

I teach at a local community college.  Some of you regular readers will recall the entertaining stories I regailed you with involving *Frank and a few other students. 

This past semester I had 60, mostly amazing, students.  It honestly was one of my best semesters ever.  I have been with the school for six years, teaching year round except for the summer Pman was born and this summer when P2 makes her grand entrance.  I truly love my job, it is not exactly what I went to college for, but I feel like I totally belong in this environment.

However, I did have these two students, who I assume are siblings, this semester who are making my post semester pre-baby time hell.  T assume they are siblings because they have the same last name, but they looked nothing alike.  They came to class (late) together and left together. I will reveal something in a minute that will also lend itself to further prove these two are siblings.

These two were habitually late to class, like 15+ minutes late.  Like just about every time the class met. 

Other students were asking me what was up with them and their excessive tardiness, okay, no one said tardiness because I teach in this day and age and not 1950.  I would just vagely shrug my shoulders and shake my head and move on.  Eventually I asked these students, to please take the class more seriously and come on time. 

They did.

Once.

These two were actually high school students who took advantage of the dual enrollment program the college offers.  Which means they were both in high school and college earning credits at the same time. 

They had a required assignment for HS the last day of our class when a test was being given and a major paper was due.  When they told me they would be missing class because they had a "required assignment" I informed them my assignments were required too.

I did extend the deadlines and put a test in the testing center for these students and two others with their own sets of issues.  This may sound like giving in to some of you, but really things like this happen all the time and I teach communication classes, I pride myself of being a flexible teacher.  That's flexible, not a sucker.

Both students ended up with high B's in my class.

Since then, I have been bullied via email by THEIR MOTHER to GIVE them both A's. She even told me that she does not think her children are capable of earning only B's and they are poised and play the piano.

Um, I don't teach piano or any class that is a derivitive of piano.  I can't even play the piano.

I'm lucky because the people in charge of my department are being very supportive.  I know this may be a very boring post, but I just have never dealt with anything like this.  If students cannot come to class regularly and on time and cannot talk directly the to teacher about grades and assignments, they are not mature enough or ready for the responsbilities of college.

I need a hug and a drink. 
An alcoholic drink. 
A strong alcoholic drink.
Le sigh, mid-July will be here soon.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

A Picture Puzzle

Can you find Parker in this picture?


This scene is becoming the nap time routine.  He does not like to wear a wet Pull-Up, but he does not leave his room during nap time to use the potty. Thus...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Dinner and A Show

Around Easter weekend I posted a blog about a Vanilla Ice concert my parents took us to on Easter Sunday. I guess after reading it my mom thought a little payback, disguised as a fun activity, was in order. 

About a week before Mother's Day I got a call from my Ma.  It seems after reading the Vanilla Ice post, she felt a little payback was in order.  She was calling to inform me that in conjunction with our trip to her house to celebrate Mama's Day, Barney would be at the local Civic Center celebrating his birthday bash.  She wanted to know if I wanted to take the Pman to see the show.

Honestly, no.  I have come to terms with Yo Gabba Gabba and even downloaded some of their songs to my ipod for P.  I can handle Dora, although she does fill me with an unnatural annoyance.  I have a deep seeded and perfectly reasonable hatred for all things Barney.
I see him as my Nemesis, actually.
When I was a teenager I did a TON of babysitting.  I watched more Barney than any other teenager in the tristate area- a fact I am not proud of.  His high pitched sing song voice and overly emotional kids on the show irritate me no end.  Frankly, we don't watch (read: I don't let) that show in our house. I do know though that Parker knows who Barney is, so I conceded. 
"Yes, Mom, get the tickets."
She called me back a bit later that same day to assure me that, "We got good seats!"  Good is a subjective term.
Mother's Day opened with a nice family brunch.  Then after Parker's nap, my mom, dad and I (Josh and my sister both had 'reasons' they couldn't 'join' us for the 'show') headed to the mall for a quick pre-show dinner.  Parker ate McDonalds, I had Subway, dad had mall pizza and mom had Chinese- ah a family coming together.
On the way to the show, I realized I was wearing a Barney colored polo shirt making me look like some kind of Barney-enthusiast. 

As we walked through the doors, I immediately shelled out $15 for a Barney Magic Wand.  Honestly, I did so happily, the alternative toy was a small white light up dildo looking flash light thing.  It was only $10, but really it looked totally inappropriate.
We found our seats, and all things considered, they were excellent seats. 

Barney bounded on stage with his falsetto voice and road crew of overly emotional twenty-somethings posing as kids.  They bounced around the stage and sang while Parker sat- mesmerized.  Other kids danced in the aisle and attempted parade up to the stage while their parents rushed up behind them in a crouching positions.

After the purchase of a $5 helium balloon and a short intermission he broke out of his shell.  His shoes came off and he danced his socked feet all over the aisle.  When Barney told him to jump he jumped.  When Barney said, "What else do you do at a birthday party?"
Parker replied, "EAT CAKE!"

Alas there was no cake.  My dad gave him a devil dog though when we got home.

He loved it (the devil dog and the show).  I cannot wait to take him to another one, although I hope it's not Barney. 

Despite the Purple Invasion, my 3rd Mother's Day was awesome.  Parker made me a cute little thing at school.  Josh helped him make me a "Things I Love About Mommy" construction paper book.  Parker had a great time at the Barney show. 

What else is there?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I'm Often Asked...

How are you feeeeeellllinggg?
Mostly like myself- tired.  I am playing more hopscotch and tic tac toe in the driveway with Parker than I was before.  These both require me to lumber around the driveway, and sometimes hop, for about an hour at a time. 
"Draw it bigger, Mommy!" Pman sweetly demands.
"Draw it over here, Mommy."  "No wait, over here."
"Let's play basketballsoccerbaseballgolf.  Let's climb that hill."
I am still going to the gym regularly, but hanging out with Pfuzz is more of a workout than any treadmill trudge.We also pick flowers from our garden, the garden that I have nothing- I mean NUTH-ING- to do with.  When Josh gets home from work, Parker grabs his bug net and they both head out the door to water the sprouts and look for "jolly happy souls" (re: worms).  I honestly don't even know what they are growing out there- vegetables and some herbs, maybe?  Right now it looks like grass to me.Early Mother's Day flowers from my favorite guys and their garden.
How is Parker? Is he ready to be a big brother?
He's awesome, of course. 
A few months ago at the pediatrician's office she commented that the wax in his ear was really deep.  She asked if we used Q-Tips to clean his ears. 
"No." I replied.  "That actually never even occured to me."
However, as the picture shows, Q-Tips have occured to Parker.  After he pulled these out of his ears and saw the bit of wax he said, "Eww, gross." Then placed them on the kitchen counter.
As for the big brother question, I have no clue.  He is staying pretty tight lipped about the whole thing.  He is interested in babies and knows there is a baby sister named Peyton in his future, past that, it's hard to tell.
How far along are you now?
I am officially 30 weeks pregnant today. 
Which means in 9 weeks from today, I will be get to kiss my sweet baby girl's face and introduce her to her amazing brother and proud papa.  At my appointment today, these will now occur every 2 weeks, my doctor called me small!  Initially I thought, OOOH HOW I LOVE THIS LADY!!  But then she said, "I want you to get another sonogram to track the baby's growth."
Wha-wa.
She is not too worried, so I'm not letting myself worry either.  Peyton is movin and groovin and her heart rate is on target.  My doc just wants to be on top of ev-er-y-thing.

Also, ummm this is small?