Sunday, April 29, 2007

For the Record........

Five. My son is five years old and has just told me that he hates me. I always wondered when it would happen, and now I know. Oh well. How seriously can I take it? This is a kid who still needs help to wipe himself.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Picture Day and What the baby wants, the baby gets.

Yesterday was Spring Picture Day at big boy's school. The siblings are invited to come in to take pictures as well, which is nice. My boys were in perfectly choreographed outfits - right down to their shoes, and looked - So.Cute. It was so nice outside yesterday, that I decided to take some pictures of my own while they were in all of their adorable goodness. I always prefer outdoor pictures to the studio type.

LB's shoes are chocolate colored with orange flames, and BB has the classic chocolate colored converse. So cool!
By the way.....whoever says that you can't dress boys up and have a little fun with it is just wrong! I've been tempted to blog about their shoe collection.....but honestly, I'm too ashamed. It isn't just me though - big boy LIVES for new shoes. LOVES them. So you know.....everything I do, I do for him. And also because I'm addicted to

They really do love eachother this much, and I have to say that nothing makes me happier.

I've been feeling some umbilical tugs - just begging for chocolate covered strawberries. It has been a very specific request. I made some today, and the boys are all very happy about this current pregnancy craving. Much more so than they were about the green olive phase.

Mercifully, a prescription antibiotic was just called into the pharmacy for me. About an hour ago, I broke down and called the on-call doctor to beg for something. The fact that my eye, cheek and upper left teeth are literally throbbing tells me that this isn't the garden variety cold. It is now a nasty sinus infection. I actually cried real tears from the pain earlier. Anyway, I'm off to pick up the miracle RX.
*Edited to add: I'm know that there is an issue with how the spacing turns out once I hit "publish." It drives me crazy....I suppose I could change the font size or something....but I just don't have the urge to do anything about it right now. Mostly because once I set out to fix it, I won't stop until I do and well.....I just don't want to sit here for 3 hours at this point!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Dear kid in the yellow shirt,

Don't take this the wrong way, but I'd very much like to cut your arm off. You just ruined a perfectly good picture of my perfectly-perfect son.
OPK (other people's kids) drive me nuts sometimes!

As you can tell from my attitude, I'm feeling much better!
That was a lie.
Actually, I'm pretty sure my left eye is going to bust away from my skull at any moment (thanks sinus pressure) and my left ear has been out of commission for the past 12 just plugged up and died.

Sick or not, I soldier on. Today is Thursday which is soccer day - so off we went.
Big boy really loves soccer and is really quite good at it! Between you and me - I'm glad that he isn't too hot on baseball/t-ball at this point because if I have to attend games at the crack of ice-cold-early on Saturdays, I'd rather watch soccer. Come to think of it, I think we're talking about two different seasons. Oh well, all this BOY SPORTS stuff is new to me. In any event, I don't like watching baseball because I find it to be boring. Now that I've put that in writing, my kids are going to turn into basball/t-ball nuts. Mark my words.
Anyway, this is a Parks and Rec. soccer thing he's doing. He loves the coach and I'm pretty impressed with how great he is with the kids. I just signed big boy up for a twice weekly/5 week soccer camp this summer with the same coach. The camp is late this in....."about to give birth" late summer. Good Mom points, right? Anyway, I think it'll be good for him to brush up on his skills before "real" soccer starts in the fall.

Speaking of Summer planning, I signed little boy up for Karate. Are you sitting there accusing me of just wanting to spike up his hair and take a picture of him in the white robe? Well...........guilty as charged. Also, I figured that this is a child who needs to have this sort of weapon at his disposal....hmmm.....maybe this isn't such a great idea after all. "HIIIII-YA!"
So we've got VBS for big boy- one week of free fun, and all of his friends are going too. Soccer for BB, karate for LB, and swim lessons for both. That oughtta do it.

Well, I'd write more - but I'm pretty sure that the remainder of my personality got stuffed up my nose, drifted down the back of my throat....and then I coughed it into the toilet.
Miss Congeniality

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Your snot, My snot, We're all full of snotty snot.

I know, that's gross. I couldn't resist. So, this is the snottiest house on the block by a landslide. Or a snotslide. Ha! Swollen glands give me the funnies. Ugh - I feel like I'm at death's door. I'm not getting better, I'm getting worse. Green. It's all very, very green. Like olive green. And not translucent. Opaque. I'll spare you any further details, but here's a little inside joke for my oldest and dearest friend Kell. Kell? TOTAL "IMF."

Hmmmm.....what to do, what to do. I should just keep them at home today because I feel terrible, and little boy isn't feeling so hot either. The thing is, staying home ALL DAY and not going anywhere is TORTURE. Perhaps I can pack them little lunch sacks, tie them onto sticks (hobo-style), and send them on their way. "Be back in time for dinner!" I'll say. No......I'm pretty sure I'd get into some sort of scuffle with the law if I were to do that.

So what are the choices? The park.....always a boring choice. "Boring" being my big boy's word for it. They only like the park if they can bring every recreational vehicle that they own. The 4-wheeler, their bikes, every dump truck in creation, you get the picture. Heaven forbid they just PLAY. I'm too achy, and stuffed up, and weak-feeling, to haul all their crap to the park. Normally I'd deal - but not today. How about the library for story time? We could try that......but once the green snot starts creeping out of the little boy's nose - or worse - he hacks up a particularly moist sounding cough - I'm going to start getting "the look" from all the other Mom's. You know the look. The one that says - "OH MY GOD THAT CHILD HAS THE PLAGUE KEEP HIM AWAY FROM MY PERFECT GERM-FREE CHILDREN!"

I could take them to Toys R Us.....I have a legitimate reason to go there....but big boy is in one of his really obnoxious retail phases, where he can't even walk down to the mailbox without expecting to find an assortment of toys waiting there just for him. The other thing, is that the little boy always goes straight to the bike section, picks one, and insists on riding it throughout the store - sailing carefree through the isles, like he's vacationing on Catalina Island. Inevitably this long haired, soft spoken yet ever present Toys R Us associate, makes it her mission (along with getting me to sign up for the birthday club) to get little boy off that bike. This woman LIVES at TRU. For the record, I loathe this woman. The feeling is mutual I think. Anyway, little boy throws a huge fit, refuses to stay off the bike, and I have to hustle his 45 lb. self through the just gets so ugly.

If we stay here, there's always play-dough, or arts 'n crafts of some kind. I love my children, but creative....they are not. A play-dough session means that I have to sit there while they both throw fistfuls of dough at me demanding that I make perfect "balls" of all sizes. A snowman is made....perhaps a caterpillar. I excuse myself to go to the bathroom, and come back to an all out play-dough throwing war zone.

I'm at a loss. And my ears are plugged, and my throat is on fire.

I realize that we shouldn't go anywhere out of respect for humanity. Humanity doesn't need our snot on every available surface.

Back to the trenches.........

Thursday, April 19, 2007

The boys in my house.

The biggest one has the Flu complete with fever, and his world has come to a total and complete stop. The littlest one has a terrible green-snot cold/cough with a side of PINK EYE (ugh!!!) The middle one is fine so far - but is "bored" and therefore mope-y and bratty. It's as if he didn't just get a bunch of really great toys for his birthday.
Oh to be male and sick (biggest one)......what a treat. I've already delivered hot soup, taken his temperature, etc. When I'm sick I just have to suck it up!
I'm very worried, because I didn't get a flu shot. I found out I was pregnant on Christmas, and we usually get flu shots in October. It just didn't occur to me to get one......fingers crossed.

I know I've been lagging in the picture taking department, so until I do - here's a picture of some overalls that I plan on getting for baby Jack. Cutest darn overalls ever. Don't ask me about the price tag because I'll never tell.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The dust has settled.

The fantastic thing about hormones is that they fluctuate! I'm feeling much better now. LB has some sort of cold/croupy thing going on. I feared it was something worse since I was thrown by the lack of fever. My kids are croup-getters and it always comes with a side of high fever. Not this time, thankfully. I actually think it's a nasty "worse at night" cold, since he isn't coughing much at all. Just waking up more than usual after being put down, and acting like he doesn't feel well with congestion, sick voice, etc. We got a referral to an orthopedic something-or-other to check out his in-toeing on his right leg/foot. Once I told Dr. McDreamy (yes.....he is) that LB always falls at least once while running, he decided that it was worth looking into....although we're both pretty sure he'll outgrow it.

Now for some truly horrible news - Big Al has to have surgery for a hernia in a couple of weeks, and won't be able to do any lifting (more than 20 lbs) for 4 to 6 weeks.

Lets have a moment of silence to take this in.

Just freakin' kill me now. Seriously? Because at almost 6 months pregnant, I don't have enough to do with the two small children. I really need a 6'5 200+ pound MAN-CHILD to deal with. Don't get me wrong, I adore my husband. While well, he really does a ton to help me out when he's home after work and on weekends. However. While incapacitated? What an absolute nightmare. The worst part is, he may need to STAY HOME FROM WORK FOR TWO WEEKS OR MORE! I'm crying on the inside.
I love when he's home and can get some things down around here, take the boys to the park - and just generally be here. But for him to be at home....and not helping.....and not lifting.....and feeling just a teensy bit sorry for himself....and watching the DIY channel in the middle of the, no.

What else.......

Here's a brief list of what I have to do by Friday morning:
~ Make 6 huge, stenciled, nice-looking posters to advertise for the fund raiser being held this weekend at big boy's school. They asked me if I would be willing on Monday. Thanks for all the notice.
~ Make 4 dozen "purchase worthy" cupcakes for the bake sale at said auction.

I's a "list" of only two things, but trust me. It's a lot. I finished *one* of the posters tonight, and it looks good....and it took me 2 hours. 5 more to go. The curse of being a scrapbooker, is that I'm truly not capable of doing something like this casually (ie - handwritten would have been a hell of a lot easier and less time consuming!)'s all or nothing with me. Ugh - the teachers at BB's school know this about me....I feel so taken advantage of. It's a curse I tell you. A curse.

Well, my trusty late night heartburn has arrived, and the Rolaids are calling my name. And so is my child....poor goodnight.

The one that should have stayed in the draft folder...

This is going to end up being one of those less-than-uplifting, journal-ish, just so that I can get some things off my chest type of posts. Not fun. No cute stories about the kids. Just ..........ugh.
So yesterday, I read an article (accidentally) about a 6 year old little boy who has been battling stage 5 neuroblastoma (cancer) for 4 years. This of course led to lots of other stories of dying children. Links are evil like that. He had little, random, seemingly harmless symptoms. Things no parent with a sixth sense worth trusting would worry about. They finally found out what it was the day he refused to walk because his legs hurt so badly. Heartbreaking. The worst case scenario. My worst fear. This set off a day of worry and crying (while the kids were either at school or later - at Grandma's.) Hmmm...think pregnancy hormones did me any favors with this one? Probably not.
Little boy went to bed without incident around 8:15 last night. He woke up crying with a barky cough at about 10:30. No fever, but a really nasty sounding cough and wheezy breathing. You know the kind of cough I hear it and immediately KNOW that you're taking this kid to the doctor's office the next day. The weirdest part, is that he hasn't had a cold or anything like that. It was so out of the blue. So, predictably - I start worrying.......and worrying.......and worrying some more. I think about the fact that he's had 3 random nose bleeds in the last 2 weeks. And about the big scary looking bug bite on his neck. And about his little foot that turns in causing him to fall down at least once *every time* he runs. I think about the fact that I wouldn't be able to live without him or either of my boys because I love them so much it hurts. And I think about how much I hate being pregnant because the hormones cause me so much emotional angst and torment. I think about how screwed up I am for having watched my Dad die of cancer when I was in high school.....and how I would do anything to not be so scared all the time.

So like I said, this was a "get it off my chest" post. More for me than anything else. That said, how glad am I that I haven't shared this blog with my grandparents or oh-my-god: my awful in-laws. GLAD.

Once I take my little boy to the doctors today (and hopefully have my fears put to rest), I should feel better. I'll be back soon with something easy, and light, and entertaining to read.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Wide Open Spaces

I was just telling a friend that it seems as though all of the favorite toys require a trip to the park. So true! Yesterday when Big Al came home from work, we brought the boys to a big open area right next to their favorite park. I only went to score points, because honestly - I usually just say "Bye-bye" - letting the boys go off to do their thing, while I stay home and enjoy a little peace and quiet. It was more fun that I expected though, and I'm glad I went. LB wanted to ride the 4-wheeler (hands down, his most prized possession) and BB wanted to try out his new RC monster truck. They had a blast! LB would have just driven off into the sunset if Daddy hadn't stopped him.

Totally off the subject.......
I'm super excited to meet the pea. I just can't wait to see his little face and smell his little baby head.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Happiness is: Our yard no longer looking like it needs a couch and some empty beer cans to be complete.

Before -

And after -

The fun part will be managing to keep the kids off of it for the next 8 days. our defense....we've tried in the past to "seed" the lawn. But as the picture on the left will show, a non-sod lawn without a built in sprinkler and a timer is a DEAD, NON-EXISTENT lawn. So YAY for instant gratification and "sleeping bag grass" as big boy calls it.

Yesterday we ended up going to the roller rink for the morning kids session. It was the only rainy-day game in town, and thus a bit crowded. Big boy did great! The last time we were there was about a year ago since he's usually at school on Wednesdays (this week is spring break). He had fun and wasn't at all put off by his numerous spills. I was the roller skating QUEEN growing up, and used to dream of someday working at a roller rink. Wearing the acid washed jeans, pink leg warmers, and serving up those sticky nacho's and giant pickles with Olivia Newton-John's "Xanado" (sp?) playing in the background. Yes.....lofty aspirations. Those were the days.

Little boy wasn't as happy with *his* numerous spills. If this isn't a face that says "I'VE HAD IT" then I don't know what is. Luckily I was prepared with some Easter bubble gum for just this reason. He was happy to chew (lots of) gum and let his brother finish skating. The people at the rink tightened the wheels on their skates so that they were nearly stopped - but still. Little boy just wasn't having it. The last time we were here, LB took off across the rink "marching" on his tightened wheels, and had a great time. BB was the one who was struggling that time. Interesting.

When we got home, LB mercifully took a long nap. BB and I were able to spend some quality "quiet" time together which is aways nice. Not that I don't love the
total and utter LOUD chaos of the two of them together....but you know. Quiet is good.

We practiced writing letters and numbers, had some messy art time, and went outside (because BB can be trusted to stay off the lawn) to blow bubbles and ride bikes while there was a break in the weather.

Don't look at my kitchen table. We're eventually going to get it refinished - but feel like it would be stupid to do so now as SOMEONE we know still likes to bang on it with cars, shovels, and other unnamed metal objects. And also - just to put a fire under Big Al's well meaning behind - those dining room windows are STILL awaiting trim. STILL. It's been long enough that I'm now ready to repaint in a different color. How about that!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Thoughts.....with a side of coffee.

Big boy to Grandma (while on the brink of tears) -

"Well, in Charlotte's Web - Charlotte died when she had her babies. Is my Mommy going to die when she has our baby?"

Damn you E.B. White.

Little boy while showing me the moth he found -

"Wook! Wook at my Moff!!! He's cute! And he has "flags" (wings) on him!!!"

It's raining today. The undoing of SAHM's (stay at home moms) and kids everywhere.

The rules - no homicide, no suicide, and if I opt to go to the mall to let them play on the pathetic excuse for an indoor play structure, keep the random, boredom-spending to a minimum.

Let the games begin.

Monday, April 9, 2007

5 Year Olds Eat Hamburgers

My big boy is officially five years old - yesterday was the big day. What chaos! As it turns out, sharing a holiday with Jesus and the Easter Bunny is tricky business. Granted, the Jesus part doesn't play as much of a part in the day as I'd like it to. And that's my fault....I've been meaning to find a church in this area so that we'd have the option of slinking into the last pew on important days like Easter. We'd be that family...the one that shows up on special holidays. Shameful, I know. But points for honesty? I grew up going to church, and appreciate having faith in something, and darnit - so will they! Anyway the Jesus part consists of my vaguely explaining to the big boy what Easter is for - rebirth, God loves you so much, sacrifice, etc. without mentioning the Crucifixion. See? Tricky business. I just want him to know that while we do in fact worship and have a hearty respect for Hallmark, it's not the only thing - and certainly not the most important thing!

Is it getting warm in here? On to lighter topics.

Pictures - Presents, egg hunts, cake, oh my!

Here's the big boy opening a birthday gift with residual Easter-basket-chocolate on his face.

Hunting for Eggs at Grandma's house.

Pretty flowers.

Here's the situation with the birthday cake. The short version is that we're all sick of chocolate, and of cake in general. All the adults opted to have lovely light fruit tarts of varying flavors for our Easter desserts. was still the big boy's birthday, and that had to be acknowledged, right? So I ordered a very small square cake from the grocery store for a whopping $6.99, threw a monster truck on it, and VOILA! Happy Birthday Big Boy. The monster truck is actually driving over some smaller cars, that's why it looks like one of them is about to go off the edge!

Today, big boy ate a hamburger. I was absolutely floored, as this is a kid who hasn't let beef pass his lips since he was a toddler - and didn't yet realize that it looked "funny." When I asked him about it, he said simply - "big five year olds eat hamburgers!" A pretty big step my friends, a pretty big step.

Here's a baby version of big boy with chocolate on his face!

I can't believe that the tiny baby who made me a Mommy five years ago yesterday, is now this big, beautiful, sweet, smart, wonderful, about-to-start-kindergarten boy! He is a huge part of my heart. He's so purely good, and I just can't believe that I had a hand in making him. He's everything I could ever want in a child, and I'm so blessed to have him - and to have all of my "2.5" children.
I'm so grateful to have these wonderful, maddening, perfectly boyish children.
For me, the fact that I do is a Jesus thing. And even on the days that I would give anything for a moments peace - I'm so thankful.
Happy Birthday Honey, I love you more than words can say.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

If My Camera Could Talk..........

It would say:

"Seriously - Just who do you think you are? You are SOOOOO not good enough for me. You have no idea what I can do. My fantastic-ness is just LOST on you."

But, I soldier on.
I recently acquired a really great new lens for my camera. After some investigating, it turns out that the kit lens that I've been using for the last year isn't so hot - and even though I have no idea what I'm talking about *technically*, I sort of agree. Anyway, as many will attest to - I suffer from a fear of all things mechanical. And metal....well, not jewelry. You get the picture. Anyway, this fear kept my fabulous new lens in the box for about two weeks. Today I took the plunge, and below are a few pictures. I have a lot to learn with this puppy - but I can already tell that the zoom is FAR superior than what I was using before. I was definitely after a better zoom when I bought this thing, so I'm happy about that. I love taking candid pictures of the kids. What I don't love, is trying to get in close to capture a great picture only to have them spot me and stop what they're doing! So not only will this lens enable me to preserve childhood memories - I can also work nights as a P.I. if I want. know. For the thrill of it. While I'm Tivo'ing Grey's Anatomy.

Here's a profile shot of my little boy and his adorable spiky haircut. I LOVE it on him. He smiles at himself in the mirror while I'm spiking his hair in the morning. So.......great. Now I'm sharing the bathroom mirror with a three year old.

Up close and personal. That little nose.....I could top it with a dab of strawberry jam and eat it for breakfast. So cute. The shot itself is a tad hazy....I'm sure it's user error.

Big Boy:
"You want me to sell you this car for HOW MUCH?!?"

"Hey, I'm already making zero on this sale, but let's go inside so I can talk to my manager."

"Looks like you've got yourself a
deal little lady."

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

The Wednesday Review

My big boy will turn five over the weekend so today he brought some mini cupcakes to preschool to share with the class. I live for making cute cupcakes, so I very much look forward to having an excuse to make them! I was told later by the teachers, that they were a big hit with the kids. Vroom-Vroom!

I love, love, love the teachers at this preschool and will be sending the little boy in the Fall because of this. However - the director is a horrible, old fashioned, controlling nightmare - so I secretly loved the fact that she was surely having an internal fit about all of these little cars! Oh the horror - having to rinse them off and then letting the kids *have* them for the remaining hour of school. It's the little thrills in life that get me through, you know? Living on the edge. Being a rebel.
Here is a picture of my big boy in his birthday crown. The crown is actually about 14" tall and very, very, glittery and cute - but it also has his name on it, and you know how I'm trying to keep that top secret. So - here's the chopped version. Not the best picture of my handsome "BIG 5" boy! His eyes look exhausted from all of the birthday fun.

My little boy has been....let's see....shouldn't say "a pain in the ass", that wouldn't sound very nice...... so lets go with....."CHALLENGING" lately. He doesn't listen. He's stubborn. He's defiant. He's fearless. He's too clever for his own good. He's been known to cuss from time to time. He knows when and how to balance his badness with cuteness - getting him off the hook for most things. He's feisty, and funny, and horrible. He's my sister. That's right Shawnee - I said it. He is YOU when you were 3 years old!!! So I'm packing him up, and sending him to you. Try to be home between 3pm and 5pm - you're going to have to sign for him.


Look at this picture of the little boy - he seems to have forgotten his eyebrows at home again.

Back to the issue - "LB" (little boy) has been so terrible about doing what he's told lately. It's gotten to where I can't bring him to the park because he's a flight risk. I of course take him anyway, and give him the talk before getting out the car.

Here's an example.....this is how it went down yesterday.

"We're here! Ready to go play at the park? YAY!!!!!! Okay - well wipe those smiles off your faces. First we have to take care of a little business.

See that bridge? That bridge that will take us right to the homeless people? We aren't going across that bridge today. Here's what we will do! We're going to play on the playground with all the nice little children and their Mommies. We're going to play in the sandbox over there. We are going to play a little catch on the grass. We are going to eat a sandwich. That is all that we are going to do. Got it? Great! Let's get out there and have some fun!"

After about 40 minutes of earning my trust and staying within the bounds, the little boy starts to inch toward the forbidden bridge - keeping one eye on me to gauge my reaction. To give you an idea of what we're dealing with here - it isn't like this bridge is right in the middle of the park and hard to avoid. It's out of the way. That's how the occasional druggies, homeless people, and semi-crazy-wandering-hippies like it!

Anyway, the short version is - he took off over the bridge after I told him to freeze. A chase ensued, the big boy tackled him to the ground and sat on him until I could snatch him up myself (big boy - my hero) and the day was ruined. He was crying, I was livid, and had to drag him to the car because he went all "boneless" on me, THE END.

I'm actually looking forward to being able to scare the little boy with the truth. The big boy used to push the limits when he was younger.....until he understood that not listening to me could lead to him being taken away from me, getting lost, or hit by a truck. It really is exhausting.....all this raising of children.

Wouldn't it be nice if the new baby could take after his oldest brother? I love a good challenge (especially when "the challenge" takes time out to hold my face in his dirty little hands and tell me he "wubs" me) but it might be nice to get another easy, compliant, low key child!

In closing - here's a picture of my window sill today. New flowers, new Lori Mitchell friends (from my birthday!) I know...I'm so lame for including this, even *I'm* rolling my eyes at me.
~~~~Edited to add: I can't get the spacing right on this post to save my life. I've tried 2 or 9 times. I am now surrendering.~~~~