Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Wild Animals

In Texas, my BFF Michelle and I ventured out to a wild animal park near Alvin, Texas. I last went when I was in high school. The day we were there was field trip day because there were tons on kids. Fortunately we got on a tram fast, but I seriously thought I was going to melt. It was HOT and HUMID and I am no longer accustomed to that, so it was miserable. The kids were good sports, but it was insane. And you get to feed the animals and they know it. Aggressive is an understatement.

Seriously, my kids look like they have heat exhaustion.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Flying to Texas

So my motto for flying is to dress the kids cute and alike. I think it is harder to be annoyed by a cute kid, and if you loose one, they all look alike and can be easily put back together. A mom can hope. I know the cute really works, I have not lost one yet, so I have not tested that theory yet. This year we also had the luxury of bringing Tina. 3 on 3 is so much easier. We love Tina.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Strawberry Picking

We are getting ready for our trip to Texas, but we wanted to fit in strawberry picking before we left. Anders loved the strawberries and ate them as fast as he picked them. Myann was partial to the white ones, though I kept telling her not to pick the white ones. Shane just ran around excited yelling every time he found some good ones.
Shane picked me a flower, as he always does - my sweetie

Note the strawberry juice dripping down those chubby legs. So proud.

He's such a big boy, but then note the sippy cup tucked under his arm.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Conversation with a 4 year old

This conversation took place last week.
Shane: God gave me special powers to save the world.
Me: Wow, you must feel pretty special.
Shane: Yes, I'm special because God wanted me to have powers and I must use my powers to save the world.
Me: You probably won't save the world, but I'm sure God will use you to do good things.
Shane: Myann is so mean God can't use her for anything.
Me: God can use everyone, He will just have to be creative.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!!!

Happy Father's Day to my husband and wonderful father to our 3 demanding children. When I feel like he isn't doing enough, if I really thought about how much he did, I should be much more thankful. He sacrifices a lot for our family, and we are thankful. Yes, dear, the kids are thankful too, they just don't know it yet.
This is what Daddy got for Father's Day in a frame plus a wooden table for the front deck. Thanks to Tina who took the pictures.

To my daddy, yes, I call him daddy and the kids call him Popi. Thank you for teaching me generosity. You have taught me a lot over the years and still teach me, you're a smart guy, so I still have lots to learn. But what stands out the most to me right now is your generosity. Grandma once told me when I was a little girl that you would give someone the shirt off your back. Though I didn't fully understand what she said at the time, it stuck with me, and I gradually understood as I witnessed it first hand. Not only are you financially generous, you are generous of your time. Too generous, there are only so many neighbors' lawns you can mow in one day. Give yourself a break sometimes. Then there was the time you picked up the prostitute. Ok, so that sounded bad. You picked up the very down on her luck woman who asked for a ride a few miles down the road. It was your birthday and Alex and I were in the car holding your cake as the woman asked for a ride. Any other person would have told her no, but you said yes and we drove her down the rode, you being very polite, and then I believe you gave her some money. I am pretty sure I was horrified at the time, but you showed us that every person deserves kindness. I think Alex has really inherited that trait from you and I pray my kids observe it themselves.

To my stepdad, John, and the kids call him Papa. Thank you for being there when you didn't have to be. You inherited us at the worse possible age, preteens. And you are still here, enough said. Though I didn't appreciate it at the time, you taught us discipline and responsibility. Not sure what happened when you became Papa because discipline went right out the door. You love your grandbabies, but you will let them do whatever they want, even eat M&M's for breakfast. But you're the Papa, so we'll forgive you.

To my father-in-law, Bob, and Grandpa Jo to the kids. First thank you for talking investments with Brian, if you didn't I would have to, and I dislike financial talk, so I am grateful. I enjoy the relationship we have, we tell it like it is and I love that we are comfortable enough with each other to do that. You are a wonderful father and I am thankful Brian has you to lead by example. And I LOVE how much you love my kids. Thank you for being so present in their lives even though we live so far apart. Praise God for webcams.

To Richard, though not officially a stepdad or grandpa, we hope you one day will be.;) Thank you for ALL you have done for our families. The list really could go on and on. You definitely exemplify a generous man, but even more than that, you are the most hospitable person I have ever met. Your charisma puts every person in the room at ease, and you sure know how to make a person feel welcome. Thank you!

We love you all!!! Happy Father's Day!!!

My cute boys

Just a fun day with the kids. Shane posing was a rare moment.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Life is getting better, or at least my perspective has

SO we are still having the tile problem, but the tile guy is being great and really working with us. It is not really his fault, he had to work with the original crappy tile job and you can only "fix" garbage so much. So we are going to try some inexpensive fixes and see what happens.

My allergy testing is half way done and the worst part is over. Today I went in for my first reading and they removed the allergy disks and tape. Tape removal has never felt so good, so much of the itching was relieved. And all the itching I have been feeling for 2 days has in fact been allergic reactions. I am apparently allergic to about 10 things, no details until the final reading Friday. All they told me was formaldehyde and related chemicals. No clue how I made it through anatomy and all my college labs with a formaldehyde allergy, but whatever, maybe I developed it recently.

Kid time has been good too, minus Myann's melt down leaving a playdate today. Oh yeah and her going into the restaurant and finding a random man and telling him she needed to go to the bathroom. She didn't, I tried to take her, but I was humiliated that she was obviously not within my sight. In my defense, I had seen her under a bench about 30 seconds before. In that time, she disappeared and I hadn't realized she disappeared.

Myann comment from a few weeks ago, I forgot to mention it and since I am admitting bad mommy moments, this fits. Myann was giving me a rough time and we were getting in the car to go to preschool. I told Shane that I couldn't wait to get to school because Myann was getting on my nerves. Myann heard and said, "Mom that hurts my feelings." Oops, I didn't think she understood what I was saying, but clearly she did. I apologized and all was well. I learned to sensor my negative comments for now on.

As for the bread in the vent, Daddy came home to the rescue. We coincidentally had bought a tool for lifting wood over the weekend, so Brian put it to use. Out came the bread along with a bunch of other gunk. Mind you, this vent is located under the kids chairs at the dinner table. So it needed to be cleaned. We then cleaned all the other wood vents that had not been cleaned since we moved in 2 years ago, yuck.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Why are some days so good and others sooooo bad?

Yesterday was the wonderful day. Awesome day at the park with friends, then naps and a nice evening. It seems like I made it through the whole day without yelling or scolding the kids.

Today...whole different game. I haven't yelled, but I am so past caring that yelling seems like it would cost more energy than I have to spare. I prefer not to post negative blogs, but by getting this out, maybe I will feel better and can move on to a better evening.

This morning I had to go to the doctor to have 80 tiny metal disks taped to my back (allergy testing). The disks are secured with medical tape and then to secure it all, they put contact paper over my whole back. Yes, I said contact paper. I can't complain, because those puppies shouldn't come off, but contact paper feels about as good as it sounds. I can't tell if I am having an allergic reaction or if my back is revolting against the massive adhesive, it itches and is uncomfortable, and I will be like this for 5 days.

Next, while I was at the doctor, the tile guy came to see what is going on with our leak. Yes, a nasty leak from the shower into our closet. BTW, the shower bottom was completely retiled less than 10 months ago from another leak. Well, we were hoping this was related to the retile, so it would be covered by warranty. But because it is that kind of day, no. The tile guy says the leak is from higher up on the shower, so not covered by his warranty. It is the builder, BTW our builder sucked!!!! This house has numerous problems, none of which are covered since the warranty on the new build is up and we are the 3rd owner. So we get to pay to have our entire closet redone and pray that the shower is really fixed this time.

After giving Myann and Shane lunch, I was nursing Anders, and come to find they thought it would be great to shove their bread down the vent. Now, every other vent in this house comes out easily, too easily, because the kids like to put toys down them. Well the kitchen vent is set in the hardwood and apparently does not come out easily. I have tried prying it open with no luck. So now we have a meals worth of bread in the vent. That should be a fun one for Brian.

Take 4, our invisible fence for the dogs has not been working. When we hired someone to haul wood away they somehow damaged the wire. So the repair guy was here to fix that this afternoon. He claims the wiring is not their wiring and looks like the wiring from Walmart. I told him that Invisible Fence did the install, so I would assume they used their wiring. Whatever, the actual problem is that whoever had the fence before must have had problems with it, because it had been spliced together several times in one 50 foot area. So he was warning me that they have had problems with the fence and kept repairing it, so we may have problems again in the future. Fabulous! And, we had to pay to repair the fence, of course.

So all in all, I could have funded one years worth of college with one days worth of household issues. Really makes for a great day. But I will say, now that this is written, I do feel much better.

One high note, today is my wonderful friend Tricia's birthday. We chatted for a while and are trying to figure out a way to see Britney Spears in concert. Just the hope, perks me up.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Ups and Downs - my emotions

I do not understand where the time goes, ok, so I have an idea...the computer - more on that later. But I do not seem to have time to do anything and I should. I can barely keep up with day to day life, much less tackle new projects. How does everyone else have time to do projects? Just to blog I must sacrifice sleep. I used to work part-time, and thought when I quit working I would replace that time with projects, but the time seems to disappear. I guess exercise has consumed a lot of that time, then the subsequent shower and clean up. BTW, not giving that up, I have never enjoyed exercise as much as I do right now. It is time alone, it gives me energy to deal with the kids, and it puts me in a much better mood. Next week I can't exercise, so I suspect it will be a miserable week - but wait, maybe I will get other projects done (yeah right, probably not). Why can't I exercise, I am having contact allergy skin tests where they put 80 metal disks all over my back. I had a horrible allergic reaction last week around my eyes. It was so bad Wednesday that I didn't leave the house and the other days, I wore my sunglasses 95% of the time. Brian was thrilled to be out of town because I looked like someone punched me in both eyes, he was gone, so couldn't be blamed. So next week we try to figure out what caused the reaction, but I can't shower and can't flex my back muscles. Sorry to anyone who may be around me, I will be grumpy and stinky.

More mixed emotions...Shane starts kindergarten in OVER a year and it is freaking me out. I can't believe he is so close to school. My poor mom is who I call when I am having a rough time with the kids, so she has suggested I put Shane in preschool 3 days per week. To give me more down time. Mom, I do have lots of good days and hours, but sadly you get called for all the bad moments, so it seems like the bad outweigh the good. Really the good is so much better than the bad, and lately the bad has been minimal. Maybe that explains the mixed emotions. I don't want Shane away from me more than he is already. Once he starts kindergarten, that is it, he will be in school full time 9 months out of the year and then off to college. So I will never have time like this with him again, so even on the tough days, I want to spend as much time with him as possible.

Where did all this come from? I started hiking with a group of ladies and their children are adolescents or teenagers. They are experiencing typical teenagers who don't talk to their parents and want to hide out in their rooms. Shane talks to me A LOT, so much so that I can't imagine he will ever not talk to me, but hearing these stories is making me appreciate this time now, because it will end. I am really trying to focus more on enjoying the talking and snuggling, because one day I will miss it. This is a challenge for me, because I REALLY value my personal space and quiet time. God thought He would be funny and gave me 3 children who love to be in constant contact with me.

As for the waste of my time on the computer, I am setting rules and cutting back on my computer time. It is a little hard because with nursing, I am just sitting there, and my hand immediately goes to the laptop to check emails or search something. But with Shane and Myann, I just enjoyed nursing and focused on them. Poor Anders already has an unnatural obsession with the computer and I am pretty sure it is because I am always on it while he is nursing. So expect to see me on the computer less. Once I quit nursing, I hope to only be on for a short time in the mornings and short time in the evenings. Wish me luck!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Rationale of a 4 year old

This morning we were watching Sid the Science Kid, my favorite show, but Shane is kind of over it. Well today he actually watched and the show was about brushing your teeth. Amen, since that is a battle in this house. Sid was saying that he loved sugar cereal and had to brush his teeth 2 times per day and he didn't want to anymore. Shane knows he needs to brush and has had a few friends with cavities lately, so I have put the fear in him. Well, Shane then says, "I don't want to brush my teeth anymore, so I just won't eat anything."

Shane's favorite word right now...Perseverance. He loves this word and uses it whenever he can. He uses it correctly, but maybe it is a tad bit overused. He was trying to peel his orange and was having a hard time. He then brought me the orange and said, "Mom, look, I persevered and I peeled the orange myself." And when looking for his shoes, "I persevered and found my shoes." This was actually a good one, because Shane is notoriously like his father when it comes to looking for something. He looks for one second and if he can't find the item he comes to me to find it. I have told him before to keep looking and maybe even said persevere, so that must be where it came from.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Moms Gone Wild

I laughed harder Friday night than I have in a long time. I also feel more refreshed from that one night and have been able to enjoy my children much more this weekend.

Sadly, one of my favorite people that I met since moving to Spokane is moving back to California. Though I will hold her to her word, that she will be back. I met Erin pretty soon after joining the Mommy and Me group and have enjoyed just being around her. You know how it is when you just meet someone that you know is a good person, that was Erin when I met her. We don't see each other often, because she lives in Idaho and she went back to work this year. I have really missed her, but liked knowing that we would still meet up for the occasional playdate. Her family has decided to move to northern California, but I am happy for her because she will get to stay home again, which is what she really wants to do. Anyway, Friday night was her send off with a few of her other friends and we drank wine, ate, chatted, did a late night hike, and danced, going to bed sometime after 2am. Of course I love to dance, so that was tons of fun hanging out with other gals who love to dance. Gretchen made the best 80s mix ever, so we danced to 80s for hours. So much fun. As for the hike, we planned to hike before dark, but thought it was going to rain. After dark, and too much wine, we decided a hike was a good idea. Erin insisted we stay on the main road, afterall, Erin lives off a dirt road on a mountain with LOTS of wild animals. Though we were so loud, that I'm pretty sure the animals stayed far away from us.

I had so much fun that I will have to venture to Idaho more to hang out with these awesome ladies. I used to be so good about going to Idaho, since it is only a 30 minute drive, which is nothing by Houston or San Diego standards. However, Spokane has softened me, so I rarely consider driving over 30 minutes intentionally.

My Shane

My heart broke for Shane today. He has been BEGGING to play with our neighbors since Friday. I talked to their mom Friday and she said they would be around, so I told Shane to look out for them and if they are outside, he can go play. Well bless his heart, he has been looking nonstop. For some reason or another we kept missing them. Today Shane nagged me constantly to call their mom and ask if he could go play at their house. I told him that it was rude to invite yourself over, so we would invite them to our house. Shane did not like that, since apparently they have more video games than we do. I did call their mom anyway, but they weren't home so I left a message. Then we waited. After 30 minutes, Shane saw their call pull in and he YELLED, "Yes! They are here, bye mom, I'm going over." I told him that they just got home and they would call if they were allowed to play. Then the heartbreak set in. They did not call and he wanted to know why they did not want to play with him. Brian and I tried to explain that it was not because they didn't want to play with him, but probably because they could not play, and I know that is probably the case since their parents are leaving town. But it did not help his very sad state. He later asked for pizza, and even though I planned to grill chicken, I wanted to give my boy anything that would make him happy. It even carried over to the store, where we had to get Daddy's chesse, and they had a cereal display with Cocoa Puffs. Shane asked for them and normally I would have said no, since I don't let my kids eat sugar cereal, except as special treats, but I could not tell him no today.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Red Slippers

So as not to leave Myann out of recent posting, here is my little diva. She LOVES these red slippers. My friend Jen gave them to us and Myann has worn them whenever I let her since that day. Consequently, some of the red luster is gone. Playing at the park - check. Digging in the garden - check. To school - check. To bed - check. To the lake - almost check, I drew the line there and said no red slippers at the lake.

And she has to put them on herself, to explain why they are on the wrong feet.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Peekaboo Anders

I don't think I could love this baby boy any more than I do. He is pure joy.

And he LOVES peekaboo.

Anders news: Anders is rolling a lot. He has learned that he can get around by rolling. He is attempting to crawl, but we are still a long way off. He reaches forward, tries to tuck his knee and usually falls to his belly. He is also trying to pull up, but usually by grabbing on to my clothes and pulling up in my lap. On occasion he will try to pull up on a toy. And, tooth number 2 is poking through. The other bottom middle tooth, so he will have a matching pair.