Thursday, July 26, 2007

I love you, Big Daddy

Tomorrow is the big day. We have known about your promotion for a while now but it's here and it's real. I am so proud of you. As I think back over our marriage, I am in awe of the things we've been allowed to see and do together. In a day where being in the military isn't viewed as a privilege by most, you hold your head high and continue touching lives and making a difference to those around you with such selflessness. You deserve this promotion. You have worked so hard and given so much of yourself these last nine years. You truly have people all over the world that love you. None as much as those that live in this house, but they all love you still.

I've thought a lot about what to say and what to give to you for your promotion. Nothing seems enough. In a few weeks, you will leave us to serve your country elsewhere. This promotion seems fitting enough right now as you prepare to leave. But I don't know how to say thank you. How do you tell the person most important to you that you are so very proud of what they do and how they never seem deterred from their positive outlook on everything? I want to hold on to you like Brother does when he's begging you not to leave for work and beg you not to go. I want to pitch a big fit and yell at your superiors and tell them that it's just not fair to make you leave me. But, as I'm about to sink to that level, I look at your eyes and realize that you need to do this. It's who you are. You love your job and you love to make a difference in people's lives. I love that about you.

Stand up there tomorrow and with your big grin, accept your new rank and allow all of us to show how proud we are of you. We're proud of your job, we're proud to call you Daddy, we're proud to call you Husband, Lover and Friend. My very best friend. Your kids adore you. I adore you. You make me a better person. Your attitude makes even the gloomiest of people brighten up and have hope. Congratulations, baby. You deserve this, because you're the Big Daddy.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Appointments, Shots and Needles! Oh MY!

Good grief. Today has been a doozy. Sister had her 4 year old check up today. We arrived and I filled out the questionnaire, which gets harder by the year, by the way. I had to ask her silly questions like "Can you say five, eight, three?" To which she would look at me like I must have lost my mind and say, "Five, eight, three", while rolling her eyes. I take it that the eye rolling wasn't mentioned because most kids her age can't do it and therefore, she must be a genius. The Dr. wasn't amused when I made that suggestion.

Toward the end of the appointment, the Doc tells me that Sister needs shots. I won't tell you how many or my reaction to him because I fear that I'd look like a bad parent and not so much a true polite southern lady. Wait, I said that while rolling my eyes, does that make me a genius?

We got over to get the shots and poor Sister was a champ through it and got the well deserved lollipop and glow in the dark band aids. Brother, upon seeing Sister receive her lollipop, decided the it'd be worth the pain.
"I want a shot."
She pulled his file and realized that he was due for one so he got one and the earned lollipop.

Later, I had an appointment of my own to attend. The Doc decided I needed to have some blood drawn down at the lab. I am nothing if not difficult so I kept my little problem to myself. The little problem that made the Red Cross write to me and ask that I stop donating blood. When I have blood drawn, I pass out. Cold. On the floor. Has been happening to me for almost 15 years now and no one can tell me why. I'm not afraid of needles or blood. I can't stop it from happening. It just does. So, after the tech blew out a vein and then fumbled for another, I debated telling her of my little issue. (I don't always tell them in advance because then they tend to think that I must be doing it on purpose by psyching myself up. Yes, please, I can't wait to pass out because it's not the utterly most humiliating experience ever. I love to do it so much, I frequently psyche myself up for it.) Not only that, when this happens, I feel like an idiot. People treat you like you must be the daintiest little whiny baby who can't handle the sight of needles. I'm not, I pinky swear.

Anyway, it happened. And, there was a whole to do about it. They paged someone and got a wheelchair and took me to a bed and wouldn't let me leave until my blood pressure went back up. Which it didn't. When I left, it was 90/50. The Doc actually suggested that I not take care of the kids on my own for the rest of the day. Pssshhht. As if.

So, we are a pretty bunch. Counting the band aids that Sister has for her scraped knee and bug bites and shots, she has 5. Brother has three. I took mine off so I just look like a heroin addict. Earlier, Sister wanted me to carry her down the stairs because her legs are too sore. I picked her up only to realize that my arms are extremely sore. Awesome.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Don't Eat the Apple Cake

I made an apple cake for dessert tonight. For the kids, of course. Not for me since I'm "dieting". We all had a slice after dinner and it was delicious. So I'm told by the children. Even with their begging for seconds, I forced them into the bath without more dessert, promising that there would be more for tomorrow. As I bathed them, I was thinking how tempting that darn apple cake was going to be sitting in the kitchen all day tomorrow and how I probably shouldn't have made it.

Fast forward, kids are in bed. Big Daddy is downstairs taking out trash and such while I check on Brother (first night in the crib with no rail...prayers appreciated!) I heard a huge crash downstairs and was positive the we'd been invaded by thugs. Since no gun fire followed, I finished up some things upstairs and forgot all about it.

I came down to load the laundry and Big Daddy was standing in the kitchen. He didn't look happy.

"Don't eat the apple cake."

Let's just end this without more detail that may incriminate the guilty. Apparently Sawyer and Big Daddy aren't on speaking terms for a while. Let's also say that Sawyer is on a bit of a sugar high. Let's also say that if we don't want the good dog to get things that he shouldn't have, we should put them higher than the stove top. Like on top of the refrigerator. Or the roof.

I'm not sure what to make of the fact that my dog is even in on the conspiracy to keep me dieting. Anyone want a puppy?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Please Slow Down

I think Brother is thisclose to meeting the woman of his dreams, marrying and having kids of his own. At least that's what my heart feels. As if this sudden interest in the potty wasn't enough, he's learned a new trick that's got me on the verge of panic.

He can climb out of his crib. Remember how I told you I was lazy on the potty training? I'm also a slacker on the moving out of the crib game. I have no desire to have Brother in a big bed. None. Everyone keeps saying that it's no big deal until he can crawl out of his act he's shown no interest in before. Until now. We were at my mother in law's house this weekend and his pack & play was parked beside of an arm chair. He learned to crawl over the side and into the chair. I was a little nervous but since there's no arm chair near his crib, I didn't lose any sleep.

But, his talent is endless. He can climb in and out at his own leisure without the arm chair. And, I'm not even allowed to help him with this new endeavor without screams of, "I DO IT MYSELF!"

What's a mom to do when in the span of three days her baby boy decides that he wants to use the potty, sleep in a big boy bed and get a tattoo? I'll tell you what. I'm refusing this whole growing up thing. It's not allowed in my house. I'm willing to make deals. If I let him get the tattoo, I wonder if he'll stay in diapers and in his crib and be my baby forever? What? The tattoo would say "Mom".

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

It's Potty Time

I'll be the first to admit, I'm lazy at potty training. Sister practically trained herself. I just don't get all excited about it and figure they'll do it when they're ready. I have my own sob story about being potty trained too early because of an over eager mom but I'll spare you the details. Suffice to say, I don't think there's a magic age that my kids need to stop wearing diapers.

Brother has been a potty-o-phobe. I haven't even bothered trying with him, even though he's two and a half. Sister, on the other hand, has other ideas for him. She has been chasing him around for months telling him he needs to use the big potty. His response is to put his little hands over his face and run away screaming adamantly, "NO!!!!"

Imagine my surprise today when he tells Big Daddy that he needs to use the potty. He goes in and uses the potty. Of course, he had an audience. And, who do you think was front and center? Sister! His own personal potty cheerleader. He was so excited and when he was done, he got a treat. And, so did Sister.

Later tonight, he came back to the potty and wanted to try again. I let him and he couldn't go. I don't blame him. It's tough to concentrate on your potty duty when you have a good game of electronic Yahtzee going. He finished up and washed his hands and I took him in for a treat. I scoured the cabinet and could only come up with a package of Sixlets candy that have been in there forever. I opened and gave him two. He ate them and started crying and demanding more. I told him that he can get two more when he uses the potty again. You see where this is going. He went right back to the bathroom and perched back up on the throne. And, in just a minute, he was going!! He got two more Sixlets!

Sister came around and saw what was going on and went to the potty without a word. She came out with her hand out for Sixlets. I think I've figured out why she's so anxious for him to potty train. And, I think I've almost reached the point where my kids are smarter than me.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

All About MEme

Crystal tagged me to do this Meme and since I'm an expert at me, I figured I'd play along.

1. I have large feet for a woman. I'm a size 10 now, used to be a 9-9.5 before having kids. Wanna explain that whole feet getting larger with childbirth thing? I sometimes tell people I'm a 9.5 because 10 sounds way more ginormous.

2. Secretly, I have always wanted to have a large family. With Big Daddy's job moving us every 2-3 years, not likely to happen though we do want more.

3. I know I've mentioned this before but it is really my meme and I can double up if I want. And, it's really a huge part of me. I love to cook. Especially baking. Also, I'm quite adept at taking whatever ingredients I have on hand and making a fabulous dish up from scratch.

4. I can't roll my tongue. And, I'm quite jealous of those who can. Only because everyone but me can do it. My dad-check. My brother-check. Sister-check. Big Daddy-check. They love to rub it in and laugh at my pitiful attempts.

5. I'm a coffee girl. LOVE the stuff. But, I'm also a little picky. If it's regular brewed coffee, I don't love most types made in restaurants or even other people's houses. If it's espresso based, I'm not as picky.

6. I'm still deciding if I like Sawyer, the new dog. There are times I like him, like when he's playing nicely with the kids or having fun with Big Daddy running around the house like a crazed mutt. Then, there are other times. Like when he's barking his face off at 7 am. Or following me around licking me constantly even when I yell for him to stop. Seriously dude, what is that?

7. I can't eat enough white grapes. I love them and eat more than a person should be allowed. At the grocery, I find the biggest bag possible and still need more the next week. Brother inherited this from me and will always pick grapes over anything else offered. Except chocolate. I have no idea where he gets that from. (Also, a little confused as to why we don't refer to them as green grapes.)

8. This is it. I'm a dumb movie addict. By dumb movies, I mean movies that are dumb. My all time favorite? Tommy Boy, hands down. RIP Chris Farley, you fat guy in a little coat.

Ok, enough about me. Let's talk about you. What do you think about me?
I kid, I kid. Seriously, I tag Sheri and Tina. Play along!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Sticky Situations and Hair Raising events

This morning, the kids were both playing so well with each other. They were sharing and getting along. It was a miracle at the Little People House. They decided to go upstairs and play, which they love to do, and I took the opportunity to mop the kitchen. As I'm mopping, I hear Brother crying. Drat, I knew it was too good to be true.

I went to the bottom of the stairs and called for him to meet me in the middle and tell me what's wrong. He approaches the top of the stairs with tears running down his cheeks. "Sister won't let me squeeze it." Huh?

It was then that I noticed that his hair was dripping wet and sticking up like Bart Simpson on a bad day.

"SISTER!! GET DOWN HERE!! What won't you let Brother squeeze?"

Sister approaches the top of the stairs and background music begins to play in my head. "Ooooh, oohh, we're halfway there, Oooh, Ooooh, we're living on a prayer...." Girl looked like she stepped right out of a Bon Jovi video circa 1987. We're talking big rockin' hair.

"It's your hairspray, Mom. I fixed our hair."

Yes you did, girl, yes you did. And High School Me would have been so proud. All I could do was stand there and giggle. And, of course, grab my camera to document. Today's flashback to the '80's brought to you by the Little People.

By the way, Tina, I totally thought of you while all of this was going on.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Rules are made to be Broken

**Updated below to add one more that I totally had a story for yet forgot to add! Thanks to the lovely Minivan speedracer for the reminder :)

Before I had kids, I was so smart. I knew exactly how to raise them according to every text book out there. As a matter of fact, I not only majored in education, I took enough psychology courses that I could tell you how detrimental your poor parenting skills were to your kids future. I made up all of these spectacular rules that I was sure to follow as soon as I reproduced. If I saw parents in restaurants or stores or even friends with kids, I'd mock their lack of parenting skills and assure anyone who'd listen that my rules would be followed to the letter the moment I became "Mom". THEN. Then, I had kids. Here's my list of rules and the realities that would bring tears to the eyes of 20 year old me.

Rule: No child of mine will ever have a pacifier. Parents who shove that thing in their kid's mouth are just being lazy and not paying enough attention to what their kid really needs.
Reality: After each kid used me for a pacifier, I was begging and promising ponies if they'd just take the dang binky. Even for a second.

Rule: No TV. Again, be a parent and use every single second of your day entertaining and feeding the young mind that you chose to bring into existence.
Reality: D-D-D-Dora, Dora the Explorer allows me to get a shower more often than days that start with T. Bring it on chica, and thanks for teaching my kids to say, "Ayudame!!" when they need me to do things for them. Or just to watch me giggle.

Rule: Um, like, my kids will never taste sugar. No cookies, candy, cake and other junk food will ever pass their little lips because it's just not good for them and will only rot their teeth and make them hyper.
Reality: Anyone want to come to my house for juice boxes and fruit snacks? And look! I have cookies!! What kind shall I get for you? Sister likes Oreos, Brother prefers chocolate chip. BUT WAIT! That's not all! Step into my pantry of despair and pick any sugar laden item of your choice (many in your choice of annoying character!)

Rule: My kid will never ever throw a tantrum in public. He or she will be well versed in how to behave themselves and not annoy people who are just trying to enjoy a good restaurant/bookstore/shopping mall.
Reality: "Hey Sister, while you're rolling around on the floor like your clothes are on fire because I said you can't have another stuffed animal to add to the already existing zoo in your room, I'm just gonna head on over to Gap, join me when you're done, k?"

Rule: Eating food off the floor? Gross. Not my sweeties. That ten second rule thing is ridiculous and makes me want to gag.
Reality: Brother dropped his hot dog on the floor at our local favorite restaurant and without hesitation, I picked it up, wiped it off with a napkin and handed it back to him. Looking up, I caught the horrified glance of a woman whose designer duds with no visible dirty handprints were a sure sign that she doesn't yet have kids. You just wait honey, you'll get it one day.

Oh yes, oh yes. The things I have learned. Or forgotten. Which is it? I think I'll be adding to this list as time goes on because almost every day I think of something that I now allow my kids to do that I once swore would never happen. This parenting thing, it ain't for textbooks.

Feel free to add your own in the comments section!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

It's a Cupcake Kind of Day

So, I've mentioned before that I'm on Weight Watchers. How's that going, you ask? Well, hang on and let me swallow the chocolate covered graham cracker I'm working on and we can talk about it.

Today was a day to beat all. Up til lunchtime, it was grand. The kids and I snuggled in bed late and then played a few games after breakfast. For the life of me, I can't figure out how it all went downhill so quickly after that. Big Daddy was home for lunch and Sister asked if she could have dessert yet. We told her to finish the last bites of her food and her reply left us puzzled. She said, "Thank you sweet parents for guiding me in the right direction and caring so much for my dietary needs." Riiight. That was what I was hoping for. What I got was a daughter who rolled her eyes at me and then gave me the death glare. Ya'll keep in mind, she's four, not sixteen. When I told her that was inappropriate, she said, "I'm so sorry my sweet mommy, who gave suffered through hours of birth to bring me into this world. I'll forever grant you with only sweet glances of adoration from this day forward." Uh huh, I'm lying again. She hit the floor, screaming. WHAT.THE.HECK. There was no build up. Just all out screaming. We tried to send her to her room and the screaming got worse. I'm pretty sure our neighbors called Child Protective Services. Not really, but I almost did.

After a very long drawn out battle with her, I come out of her room to find that Sawyer (the dog) had gotten frightened by her shrill screams. Wanna know what Sawyer does when he's afraid? He pees. That dog has urine that smells like a dang skunk. He peed on every.single.stair. all the way down. That's 16 steps from top to bottom and every one had a puddle on it. I'm so lucky and attentive that the only way I found out was because my sock landed in the middle of a puddle and soaked it up to the ankle. Love that dog. So glad we saved his little life from the horror of the SPCA.

My day got better and better from there. So, when Big Daddy got home, I handed the kids over to him and told him I was going out. I was already scheduled to have coffee with some girlfriends but I left two hours early for that to have some quiet time. On my way to coffee, I picked up cupcakes for the girls. I just figured if I'd had a Cupcake Kind of Day that they may have also. I was so right and they were ever so glad to have cupcakes. I'm so lucky to have girlfriends who get it when I just need cupcakes to make the day end on a better note. They made me laugh and by the time I left them, I felt like I'd had a pretty great day all along. Isn't that what girlfriends are for?

I have a few left over and ya'll come on over and share some with me. I'm guessing you may have had a Cupcake Kind of Day, too. Just don't tell my Weight Watchers leader or I'll deny I ever knew you.

Monday, July 2, 2007

I'd like to thank the Little People.... Ya'll!! I won an award! For this blog! Not only that, the wonderful, cute, funny as all heck person that nominated me is who I want to be when I grow up! Seriously, I love this! Especially when I click through who awarded it to her and who else she awarded and so on. These are fabulous women! Women that I read and laugh so hard that I almost pee. Want to see my trophy? Don't even think about stealing it because I'll hunt you down.

Now, I get to pass it on to five rockin' girls that I totally love. Ya'll go read them and tell them how much they rock! I'm passing it on to: Mommy Macchiato, Mom to the Screaming Masses, Enjoy the Journey, What Makes a Housewife Desperate (she just got back from a break!). I realize that is only four but as I was looking through my list of loved blogs, I see that most of them have a Rockin' Girl Tag already! Thanks again Sheri from My Minivan is Faster Than Yours.