Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Spring Time....

In February?! The weather has been SO mild, a far cry from the "worst winter in at least 60 years" that was predicted a few months ago.

Today it was over 60 degrees, albeit with lots of wind. Zakkai was out playing at least 3 times today:)

Here he is a couple of days ago having fun in the driveway! He hasn't minded being outside by himself and spends long periods of time digging up the gravel driveway. It's fun to peek out the window and watch him:)

 And finally it was warm enough for Little Miss to go outside, too! She definitely gave her Grandma a run for her money today because she is a BUSY bee.

 Zakkai did some plowing on the tractor, preparing his fields to plant tomatoes, corn, pickles and green peppers:)

 He seems to have been the least affected of all of us through these past 2 1/2 weeks, soaking in every bit of extra love and attention he has gotten from Mugga, Grandma, Papa, and a couple of my aunts. I'm totally going to be old hat when we get back home!

 My two littlest chickies:)

 Miss Thang is officially, officially a WALKER now! But she did take a break outside and did a little fancy fast crawling for old times sake:)


 Even I got to enjoy the fresh air and the still, quiet view from the front porch:)

Can't believe how big she's getting! Her daddy's going to be surprised when he sees her walking everywhere!

Samuel has made a full recovery from his flu, as of this morning. He sounded SO much better on the phone tonight. He said he can't wait to give me a big hug on Saturday when our family is finally reunited!

I wish I could say that I am headed home fully mended and walking~oh, how I wish! That may not be the case but I have made some progress and hope to begin taking small steps (with both crutches) next week. I am just so anxious to see Ben and Samuel and feel whole again. I have missed them so much!

We've really been working to find all the silver linings in this situation~ a good practice, for sure. While it has been very rough on us in many ways, a lot of good things have come from it, too. Especially extra time with our family, whom we miss all the time.

Hope your day was full of silver linings!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Eliana's New Skill

We had our very first outing today!! Well, I suppose I should say my first outing:) We were all feeling a bit cagey and, as you know, Sunday was rough so it was exciting for all of us to get some fresh air. And for me, to feel "human" again:)

It was worth the extra pain of the rest of the day, seriously. We went to the mall and got our newest walker some new shoes! She screamed like she was getting shots when her feet got measured but it was all good in the end.

She got to ride in my wheelchair with me. Oh yeah.

We also made a brief trip to Target, where we met my sister. I got to be even more cool with a smooth ride through the store on a motorized cart. With my foot propped up on the basket. All I needed was streamers and a bell and the picture would've been complete! I had to take over driving from Zakkai, who was sitting on my lap, when we almost ran over my 7 month pregnant sister and crashed into a few displays.

That was slightly mortifying:)

Samuel is doing so much better tonight, thankfully! He finally stopped throwing up this morning and perked up this afternoon. I could tell from talking to him that he is weak but glad to be feeling better.

And now I leave you with a peak at Eliana's new skill! She LOVES it.

The dog hates it.

video

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Howdy. We've hit a bit of a rough patch, which is hard since everything has been going so smoothly, thanks to many prayers!

Today my mom started coming down with a cold and has felt cruddy. Not good since she's our primary caregiver for another 6 days!! Please pray that she sleeps well (which would mean E has to sleep well...) and wakes up feeling better. I feel SO guilty that she isn't feeling well, knowing all of her hard work for the past couple of weeks has probably run her down:(

Samuel came down with the stomach flu and has been vomiting for over 7 hours, as of the last time I talked to Ben. I am SO sad not to be there with my baby, comforting him. Please pray he stops getting sick soon so he won't get dehydrated! It's also tough because Ben will have to miss work tomorrow, which will be his 2nd time for this job in the past 2 weeks.

And I keep having up and down days. I am trying to wean myself off of the pain medication. It's easier at night because I am sleeping (wasn't that obvious??) but during the day if I go too long without some, I start hurting a lot more and getting bad headaches and nausea. I think my body is way too used to the medicine after 2+ weeks of being on it. Please pray that I can bear the bad headaches as I wean off of it and that my foot heals soon. I'm getting antsy over here!! 

In happier news, Eliana has become a full-fledged toddler, complete with much screaming, some hitting and lots of walking. Yikes!





Friday, February 24, 2012

Beautiful.


Darling.
 Dimpled.
 Joyful.
 Tiny and Perfect.

Blue-eyed.

Captivating.
Beautiful.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Chronicles of the Gimp

I'm not exactly a picture-taking guru these days. As a matter of fact, most of the time my camera's not within reach and it's not too easy for me to get up and find it! Eliana took my camera downstairs yesterday so now I just need someone to bring it back to me.....:)

Today was a very happy day for my Z-man! He got to spend a wonderful morning with my Aunt. They did puzzles, went on a walk, dug in the gravel driveway, ate mac and cheese (he informed her that he does not usually eat the boxed kind, as it isn't good for you! Haha), and just had a great time!

Then "babysitter #2" came along for the next shift and that happened to be the one and only Grandma! She immediately drew Zakkai into the fun task of baking cupcakes. He was waiting anxiously to do this alllll morning:) He didn't get to have any cake or cupcakes on his bday so I am so happy that he had fun making some today! He got to sample one before dinner and tried to trick his Mugga into another one for after dinner. Thankfully, Grandma was still there and caught onto his sneaky scheme:)

Eliana surprised us all with a good 3 1/2 hour nap today. She would've even kept going but we had to wake her up for the shift change. She was probably extra tired from that 2 1/2 hour talking/laughing spell in the late hours of the evening last night....

I got pretty emotional after talking to my Samuel tonight. I miss him so much! He has the cutest little voice on the phone and hearing him say "I miss you, mommy" would be enough to break even the toughest of hearts! I know he and Daddy are having a great time bonding in the bachelor pad but we all can't wait to fit the pieces of our family puzzle back together again.

I am same old, same old. I figure I may have to do some heavy duty exercise after this whole shebang is over with~except for my arms! Crutches are a great way to get definition in your arms! Not that I would recommend you needing them......But I'll have an extra pair here sometime that you can borrow for fun:)

Until next time....
Love,
Gimpy

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

2nd video

See below post!
For whatever reason, this video wouldn't upload on the actual post so here it is:)
video

Traveling Fam

We made it safely to Ohio last night. Zakkai was an absolute angel the whole trip! He entertained Eliana, watched car and truck wheels, played, took a nap, ate a snack and only asked if we were close about 95 times!

Eliana did pretty well, too. There was a fair amount of screeching when she dropped toys or threw her special elephants and was fighting a nap but other than that...:)

It was a hard day for us as a family to be separated from each other. Samuel was in tears several times yesterday and ended up sleeping with Daddy last night. He hasn't decided where he is sleeping tonight;) We are taking this one day at a time but hoping the time goes quickly so we can be back together again.

I went to the dr before our trip yesterday and learned that I am completely off my foot for another 10 days. Yuck. I get that everything needs to knit together inside but...just yuck. It's really hard not to be able to pick up my baby and comfort her unless someone brings her to me or to care for myself, clean things, cook, etc. But today I decided that I need to find the blessings in this situation so I don't get frustrated or discouraged!

So far:

*Eliana got over her fear of my mom and has finally bonded with her, which makes my heart happy.

*Ben is getting special time with just Samuel while they are "baching" over in Chicago.

*We are being shown lots of love by family!

*I have time to read lots of books:) And think. And pray.

And, so you can be as amused as we are, here are 2 videos of E. In the first one, she is making a methodical mess of my "library." And in the 2nd, she is having quite a conversation as she has been doing lately. Cracks us up!

video



(See Above For Second Video)

Monday, February 20, 2012

Happy Birthday

5 things I love about my newly-minted 5 year old!

Dear Sweet Boy,

I love so many things about you that I can't even name them all! But here are 5 special things about you.

I love your laugh. Especially when it's free and uninhibited. It never fails to bring joy to my heart to hear you giggle. I hope you always find things to laugh about!




I love the way you look straight into my eyes when you are telling me something important. You get so close I can memorize the bright sky blue of your eyes and watch the expressiveness on your face. There is nothing but the pure innocence of a child in your gaze.


I love your zest for life. When I think of you, I think of bright colors, happy (loud) noise, energy and passion. God created you full to the brim of passionate life and I can't wait to see how He uses you!

I love your mechanical side. Sometimes you just might drive us crazy with your obsession for batteries, lights and buttons but I love watching your little brain puzzle and think as you intently try to figure out how things work.

I love your sweetness. You never fail to care when I am sad and are quick to offer a hug or just reach over and pat or rub my arm for no reason at all but just to show me you love me. You are affectionate, tender-hearted and wonderful.

I don't know how you changed from my little dark-haired baby boy into my tall, maturing 5 year old so quickly. You were my buddy-baby for such a long, long time that it's hard for me to let that image go.

I always tell you, even though you'll grow bigger and taller than me and become a man someday, you'll always be my baby.

I love you with all of my heart, precious son of mine.

Love,
Mommy

Saturday, February 18, 2012

My interesting life.

I know I haven't been blogging every day this past week. It's not like I have too much to say. Let's see, my bedroom is cold. My walls are white. There's this cobweb high up on one wall that I look forward to tackling in a few weeks when I'm back in the game. My clock ticks loudly. Everything feels chaotic. Apparently rubbing alcohol is the way to get iodine off of your skin. Anything else you'd like to know? ;)

Here are a few more interesting tidbits:

*Eliana is all better~yea! She definitely acts a little weirder sometimes (strange emotions) because everything is different. For ex. When I ventured downstairs to lay on my second bed (a.k.a. the couch), she went crazy for 10-15 minutes laughing and showing off for me. She was spinning in circles on the ground, playing peek-a-boo and just being generally silly. After show and tell was over, she crawled over to me and wanted to hang near me. Which then led to her wanting me to pick her up so she could sit with me. She was happy for a bit and then randomly started to cry and worked herself up into this strange tantrum over absolutely nothing. I think she's really confused why her mama doesn't act normal anymore!

*Zakkai is SO excited over his upcoming birthday. I am so sad that I can't celebrate his birthday like I want to; in a way to make him feel special. I told him that when I get better, we'll throw him a fun party with his friends. We're going to try to have a small celebration tomorrow night because we'll probably be traveling on his bday. That's right, see next point...

*Zakkai, Eliana and I are headed to Ohio on Monday. We've all racked our brains for ways to get through the next couple of weeks but with no help nearby and with me so very limited in my abilities, we have no choice. So we're being packed up and heading off after my next check-up. We'll probably be recuperating (well, I will) there for about a week and a half before being shuttled back here, just in time for B's spring break. Have I mentioned how fun it is to be a burden to everyone??

*On a cuter note, Eliana has a new obsession with the tv remotes (and there are several of them!). I heard my mom and the boys downstairs at lunchtime looking all over the house for a missing DVD remote. They were searching in the couch cushions, under the couch, under the tv stand, etc., all to no avail. We knew it had to be in the house somewhere!

Later in the afternoon, Eliana came into the living room pushing our tea kettle in front of her (I have no idea why it was on the ground~I've lost all control of everything!) She thought she was being so cute (and she was:). She twisted off the lid and reached inside and to my surprise, pulled out the missing remote! We got a good laugh over that one;)

*The boys got special Valentine's packages from their always thoughtful Grandma and the cards contained a few dollars each. They were overheard at the table several days ago plotting to use their $3 (each) to give to Mugga so she could stay with us longer. Love those sweet hearts!!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Tutu

I may be down and out but I can do something productive with my life. Notice I didn't say useful, mind you:)

Here's a little project my mom brought for me to do while lying down.....

First you put the sewed elastic around your thigh and then you tie on the tulle...

 Add a few rosebuds to the front and you have a tutu! Oh wait. You have to find a cute model, too.....

 Found just the right one!!

 "You're not going to show this picture on my graduation day or something, are you?"


Absolutely!
Who can resist a sweet little girl in her pink tutu?!

Not me!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Recovery.

So, a lot of people have been asking about my recovery from this ordeal. If I haven't answered you, promise I wasn't ignoring you ~ I just didn't know.

I didn't get good answers before the surgery. You all know how last week went and I was pretty preoccupied with my crazy (but very nice!) dr and all the clearance appointments she made me go to and trying to prepare for this week.

Apparently recovering from foot surgery stinks. I had this insane idea that I'd be laid out for a few days, given that I was at least warned that the first few days would be miserable, and then hobbling around on a crutch or two with my boot, back to busyness by the end of this week.

What, am I freaking crazy????? No one warned me that surgery is like trauma to your body and that you'll feel like you got hit with a mack truck anytime you do anything drastic like, oh, take a shower or go to the drs! And that doesn't even count the healing of the surgical site itself.

I am taking some serious nappage over here. Yesterday at the drs, I was so wiped out, I was shaking and apparently pure white since the dr made her nurse run and grab me some water to sip on and forced me to lay down until color came back to my cheeks. Apparently she's had people pass out on her before:)

Okay, so for real, I'm laid out for awhile. No weight bearing til Tues when she'll give me the go ahead to just start to begin to slightly bear weight with my crutches. Um, taking care of 3 kids (one of whom doesn't walk), cooking, cleaning, driving, laundry, etc just does not happen too well when you have one leg and 2 crutches.

Samuel keeps saying, "I wish you didn't drop a rotary cutter on your foot, mommy." Me, too, Buddy. Me.too. If I could rewind time, I would.

In all honesty, we're kinda reeling over here, trying to figure out how to fly crippled for a little while. Ben and my mom seriously deserve medals for everything they are doing.

I'm asking for your prayers. Once again. This isn't the end of the world; people go through MUCH more than this. It's a minor glitch in our busy life! But a glitch, it is. Samuel is extra emotional about things, Zakkai is latched onto my mom like white on rice, Eliana is still recovering, just in time to get some molars, Ben and my mom are exhausted and I'm laying with my foot in the air feeling incredibly, overwhelmingly guilty and helpless. It's a lot right now.  I am wishing for the millionth time that we lived closer to family because I know that's what family is for: Loving and supporting each other through rough times and happy times.

I promise to try not to complain too much. But I'm also learning that it's okay to reach out when you need a little help or some extra prayers. And I hope that you'll reach out to me when you have those times, too, so I can shower you with my love and prayers. Actually, now would be a great time since I can't do much else;)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Love

Love. What a simple word. What a wealth of meaning. Let me tell you what Love is to me today.

Love is:

*Getting up 7 times in the night with the baby when she's sick. Several nights in a row.

*Letting me squeeze your hand in the night when the pain is so bad I can't stand it.

*Getting up and going to work in the morning when you haven't had good sleep in 4 nights.

*Forgiving when you're both so overwhelmed and tired that you start snapping at each other.

*Falling asleep holding hands when you're too tired to say another word.

*Carrying your wife up the stairs when she can't walk.

*Laughing when the only other choice is crying.

*The glue that binds you through sickness and health, richness and poorness, happy times and bad times.

*Commitment to stick by your side and do the right thing even when it's the last thing you want to do.

*Setting aside your pride and saying "I'm Sorry" first.

*Putting up with you even when you look like this:


*Trying every single day to become more like Jesus, the ultimate example of Love.

*Never-ending. Beautiful. Selfless. Life-Changing.

Love is YOU, Ben Thomas. I'm sorry I can't make this a special day for you or even an easy day but I can tell you what's in my heart. The heart that belongs to you. Happy Birthday.


Love

"Rising above wordly standards;
Choosing to obey our Master.
Laying down your life;
Forgiving and encouraging.
Smiling and learning to laugh;
Romancing and celebrating.
Giving without expectations;
Being content, sacrificing.
Believing, praying, loving,
Because He first loved us."

HKT

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Day 3

in case I haven't lost you all as readers, thought I'd post a quick update:)

*It's been a rough weekend for all of us!

*Eliana finally turned the corner this afternoon. Praise the Lord! She has been beyond miserable for days now, constantly crying in this pathetic moaning way. She's had these heartbreaking "sick eyes" but after her second nap today, she perked up and ate better, played better and the best part? Even started smiling again!! Let's hope, for daddy's sake, she sleeps better tonight. He's getting a good taste of what getting up in the night is like;)

*I am hanging in there. This isn't fun, no bones about it, but I am so thankful the worst is over. No more anxiety over the surgery. No more "what ifs," about the surgery anyways. Just healing and moving on.

*Friday night and yesterday were miserable for me, quite honestly. Thankfully, after not being able to get ahold of my dr, we were able to talk to a dr friend of ours, whom we love (Thank you!), and she was able to give us advice on pain medicine. I can't take strong pain medications, due to strong sensitivities, so I was sent home on Motrin and told to "tough it out." Nice, huh? Motrin every 8 hours was NOT working so now I have a round the clock relationship with Motrin and tylenol. Thank you, Miss E, for helping us take the edge of my misery!!

*So here I lie, with my foot above my heart, only able to make short trips to the bathroom with my crutches. I am being waited on, hand and foot (no pun intended...haha), reading books, taking naps and receiving periodic visits from the boys. I attempted my first shower today and even though I paid for it dearly, it felt so wonderful to wash "hospital" off. Although, I wonder how long it will take to get the iodine off.....

Here's to good sleeping tonight for all of us!
*

Friday, February 10, 2012

Update

What a rough day but we made it.

We made the tough decision this morning to have B take E to the dr since she was up ALL night crying with a high fever. After multiple attempts to get ahold of her dr, they ended up in the ER, where she was diagnosed with an ear infection:( Poor baby had a really rough day.

She and I took a long nap together this afternoon and made quite a pitiful sight!

I made it through surgery fine. My nerves attacked me this morning strongly after seeing how miserable E was. It literally broke my heart to say goodbye to her.

My foot has hopefully been repaired and will be on its way to recovery. I am bedridden for several days with my foot up in the air, living for the next time I can take my pain meds! BUT...the part I was dreading is over finally so we can move on!

Thanks again for all of your prayers. We have really felt them...

Prayer

Calling all prayer warriors!! I am 5 min away from leaving for the hospital and we've had a really rough night. Eliana is so sick with almost a 103 fever. Ben is now staying home with her and taking her to the dr while my mom comes with me.

Please pray as it is breaking my heart to leave her so miserable! Pray we can get into the drs easily and that they will find out what's making her so sick.

Thanks!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Last Hoorahs.

Please forgive me for all the surgery posts! It's been consuming my mind a bit lately:)

Today I had yet another drs appt to ease my OCD dr's mind and everything is a GO for tomorrow morning at 9am.

I want to thank you a million times for all of the kind words of encouragment, the prayers and thoughts. I woke up sick to my stomach this morning, just so anxious and not able to eat but suddenly late morning, after a call from the hospital nurse, my anxiety just .....disappeared!

It was the weirdest feeling to be without it. I didn't even question it, I just enjoyed it:) And thanked God for His peace. And after things went well at my last check-up with a specialist, I felt even more free and just ready to do this thing.

Believe me, I know this isn't major surgery or anything and there are people going through so much worse out there. It's just my first surgery and my dr being "anal" (her words) with all of her anxieties didn't help me one bit this week!

So thank you for all your support! E is improving slowly and we are praying she will have a smooth day tomorrow.

If you want to know any updates, please feel free to call/text Ben or my mom. If you need the numbers, you can email me. Before 7am, that is;)

See you on the flip side!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Update

So today's updates are:

*Surgery is BACK ON for Friday and I feel like a wreck! I've been pulled back and forth a bazillion times this week and it's exhausting. I'm scared to death and my hands are shaking but I am ready to get this over with an move on. I am SOOOOO thankful for all of your kind words and prayers!!

*Eliana had a very sad night with fevers up to almost 103. She kept crying out and when I'd go check on her, she was shaking all over~so sad!! The fever is down to 100 today but she's still feeling cruddy. Please pray she gets better by Friday!!

Hopefully no new updates today except good ones:)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Sometimes Life is Stinky.

So......today hasn't been the greatest day, unfortunately. Wish I could have a post with funny stories or cute pictures but instead, do you mind if I just lay it all out there for a sec? Thanks!

The "wrinkle" that I mentioned last night has turned into a wave and now my surgery will be cancelled for Friday. I am incredibly frustrated because I have been so anxious about this whole process and SO ready to get it done and move on! The podiatrist has referred me to see another specialist due to some condition she thinks I might be developing (which I disagree with) and she refuses to do surgery until it's checked out.

So I had an appointment set up for tomorrow morning (my 3rd drs appointment of the week) and the office called to "confirm" this afternoon and said the dr will not see me and didn't give a rip that everything is all set up for Friday. So I can't even get in to see him til the end of the month!

I am really frustrated with my podiatrist for not even discussing this when I saw her 3 weeks ago, when it could've been taken care of. So all this running around like a nutcase to (oh, let's count them....1,2,3.4,5 ) appointments in the past 3 weeks is all for naught.

I would really appreciate your prayers as I figure out what to do and for the timing of everything. And please pray that I do not have this condition she talked about!

And then Little Miss is sick:( She was totally fine this morning but just before today's dr appointment, she woke up from her nap crying and crying. She was up to over a 102 temp by 4pm and took 3 naps today between 11 and 5pm. She is clearly miserable and so she could use some prayers, too!

I know soon this will be nothing but an annoying memory and in the scheme of things, it's really not that big of a deal. It just stinks for now!

Trying to think about things that are true, things that are lovely, things that are pure and things that are right. Looking for the peace of God that surpasses all understanding!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Sunshine

 As promised, here are some more pictures from our beautiful outing to a park that is close to our home yesterday. Gotta take hold of these days!

Missy and her book:)

 Daddy takes every chance he can to steal her away when he is home:)

 There is some very serious reading going on here!

 I "stalked" the boys with the camera yesterday and it soon became a game for them to hide from me or run away screaming. But I was patient and waited until their heads would peek around the corner or they weren't paying enough attention;)

 Gotcha ya!

 I like to call this one "Teeter-Totter." Isn't that profound??

 And once again, I had to sneak in for a shot so that the children will have picture proof that I was there during their growing up years instead of the "faceless" behind the camera person!

 Samuel Smokestack!

What a funny looking flower growing in the park!

*Would love your prayers for this week as there were a few wrinkles today about my surgery. Please pray for wisdom and for everything to work smoothly and for protection!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Day at the Park

It was SUCH a gorgeous day here ~ sunshine and mild temperatures ~ that we decided to get out of the house after E's (very long) nap and wander over to the park.

I tell you, I wouldn't quite mind 6 more weeks of winter if it's like this!

A small peek at a few of my favorite pics of today! More to come:)


E loves to read and took a book with her everywhere today:)

 I have to be sneaky to get pics of this guy:)

 Someone got bored sitting in her stroller and spent a little time inside a tunnel slide having the time of her life! Love those eyes:)

 Samuel had a blast on the teeter totter, trying to bounce as high as he could go!

LOVE this pic of my beautiful (okay, okay handsome:) boys!

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

LegoLand

Oh my goodness, today was the longest day ever! I seriously looked at the clock at 2:30pm and thought, "It's ONLY 2:30???"

Could be because I haven't been sleeping all that well and the past few nights have been woken up for one reason or another (the littlest peanut has been crying out) and canNOT get back to sleep! I toss and I turn and I worry and think about everything imaginable.

Mostly my upcoming week and our ridiculous neighbors. 

Anyone else have nights like that? Hoping I sleep better tonight! 
This little Pickle has stopped her walking spree and wants nothing to do with it! Isn't that strange? I seem to remember she did that with crawling, too. Crawled like crazy for a few days, stopped for a bit and then took it up full time.

Gotta have her own way, in her own time. Scary for the future?

 You know Saturdays are a long day for the kiddos and I so I am always looking for activities to do at home or close by since we are car-less. Yesterday Z and I ran into the library really fast to grab a Friday night movie and I was stopped by a big sign that declared there was a workshop today at the library from Legoland!

And the best part? There were only TWO spots left!

I hurried downstairs and signed the boys up. Samuel was in between ages for the 2 groups but the only spot open was for Z's age group. He had so much fun for someone who declared he didn't want to go!!

They got divided up into groups to build towers. Z had a preschool classmate there who was a team "leader" and the first one he picked for his team was Zakkai:)

 Samuel was spotted and snatched up immediately by the other oldest child in the group. He was on the light blue team. I was proud of him for going into his own group so easily~shows how far he's come in the past few years!

 Missy and I sat on the sidelines with the other parents and snuck a few pics:) I know this one's blurry but I was trying to get Zakkai's group building their blue/white tower in the backround.
 The boys look so serious but they really did have a great time~promise! The legoland guys talked about what could make a tall tower fall down and there were guesses like tornadoes, hurricanes and finally earthquakes. So each tower got to have its turn on the table being shaken like an earthquake. (a.k.a. 2 Legoland dudes on each end of the table, shaking it)

First round of towers all crumbled in seconds! Then they learned how to build a good strong base/foundation for their towers. Almost all of the second round of towers withstood the "earthquake." Except Z's group....

So they got the privilege of being the final earthquake for all the other towers in one final hurrah. It was a very violent earthquake~atleast an 8.0!

They walked away with special crowns, stickers and even some free tickets to visit LegoLand. A successful hour!

Later, at home, we all took turns playing a little Wii and I just had to get a quick video of Zakkai doing some running because he's so funny! Plus you get to see E shaking her finger at Z and yelling ~ a new fav passtime of hers:) Please ignore all messes in the scene. It's all Eliana's doing;)



video

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Who Said:

 (July 2011)

HE said, "Mommy, I just saw a RAT downstairs!" Some of the very first words I heard this morning from Zakkai, whose chest was heaving with the exertion of running all the way back upstairs to impart this wonderful news. I said, "A rat?!"

He nodded, his eyes big, and said "It ran into a crack by the dishwasher!"

The mice are back.
``````````````````````````````````
I discovered this afternoon, after careful questioning, that the mice problem most likely originates from our nearest neighbor's place. I gently and repeatedly encouraged her to call the pest control people, hinting that if we hit it from both sides, maybe the mice would all disappear!

I hope she takes my hints.
``````````````````````````````````
SHE let loose with some hellion-like screaming when she discovered her new favorite playing place of the stairs was blocked off this morning.

She, being our baby-toddler.

We've decided to allow her some supervised stairs playing here and there but for my sanity, to keep it blocked off especially during times where I can't be right there. Ever tried to make dinner while running (hobbling) back and forth to take the baby off the stairs so she doesn't fall and hurt herself?? Thank goodness for the ingenious thinking caps that the hubs and I have developed after 6 1/2 years of parenthood.

One babygate and 2 small ottomans (one with weights inside) in front are working for now. Nevermind that the newest game is to throw toys over the other side and say "Uh-oh!"

Sixty times a day:)
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HE was grumpy on the way to school yesterday morning and was directed by his mama to de-grumpfy his first-grade self by saying 6 things he was thankful or that are good/happy/fun.

6 things if your 6 doesn't seem to bad, right?

You should've heard the moaning! But after the 6 things reluctantly made their way out of Samuel's mouth? The grumpies and complaining were GONE.

1. He loves me.
2. He loves Daddy.
3. He loves Eliana. (and Zakkai, too, I am sure:)
4. He is thankful for school.
5. He is thankful for the best first grade teacher ever.
6. He is glad he has lots of friends.
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 I came up with a quick motivator just before bedtime tonight and set the timer for 5 minutes and the boys and I had a race to see how much we could clean up in that time.

I'd say that's a winning tactic for anyone! Within 5 minutes, I had a clean living room and dining room, 2 boys happy from their racing and accomplishments and there was less work for me to do after they went to bed!

I told them next time, we're setting the 5 minute timer for their bedroom. Goodness, I might start timing myself to see what I can clean in 5 minute incriments throughout the day!

Buono notte!


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Denial.

I like to stay in denial about some things. It just makes life so much easier! That's healthy, right? Right?

I have been in denial that Missy would grow up even from the minute she was born. Well, okay, I knew it was going to happen. I knew it would happen fast. It happened and is happening with the boys and nothing I do can stop it.

I was in denial about her first birthday coming. You all got the privilege of seeing (or reading) how hard that was for me (us). So I decided she would just stay a baby and never become a toddler!

There it is again...denial. It has a warm steady place in my life where I secretly nurture it and no one really has to know about it. I'm not addicted to anything chocolate. I'm not trying to hold on to my babies and keep them small forever. Not me!

But, unfortunately, there's this thing called life that creeps into my secret denial compartment and rears its harsh head. Babies do, in fact, turn into toddlers. And now I am seeing daily proof of that.

She climbs stairs now.....It only went up to about step 3 until yesterday. When I had the audacity to declare to our friend, Miss E, that Missy never ventured beyond!

So today she decided to climb ALLLL the way to the top. All 12 or 13 steps.

 Do you see that look she is giving me? It is one that toddlers perfect. It is a perfect blend of innocent, baby-defiance. She is starting to test now, albeit mildly. She reaches out a hand to touch the trash can, turns to look at me and says, "Mo, mo mo" (No, no, no). She turns on and off the t.v. while chanting "Mo, mo." She even almost knocked over a forgotten 2x2 that was hiding behind the door and when I told her that wasn't a toy? She cautiously, so as not to induce suspicion, reached out a hand, touched it and glanced at me out of the side of her eyes to see if I was watching.

She screams. She laughs. And then she screams again. She's a crawling, maybe turning walking terror on two of the cutest, chubbiest, shortest (sorry, baby!) little legs you ever saw.
(The boys playing games with Missy on the other side of the new barrier)

Life is a pure delight for my baby-turning-toddler. But, just like I've told my boys, even if she grows up and gets too big for her britches (or skirts) and gets all independent (it happens to the best of them..sigh), no matter how old she is or what she does or where she goes...

She'll always be my baby; they all will. Denial or no denial.

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