Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Helmets? Muzzles? Pinesol?

It's a backwards theme this week so I'm laying it all out there with some of my biggest problems right now. I thought about asking for help with my addiction to Dr Pepper, but who am I kidding? I don't want help with that problem. All joking aside, I hope that someone, somewhere, has some answers for me!

First, my one year old. He's a freakin' monkey! He won't walk and he will barely, barely talk, but he climbs. Everything. Anything. Here are the pictures to prove it. I have four kids so it's kind of hard to watch him every moment. It's getting scary! I can at least close doors to bedrooms and bathrooms, but the dining table and couches are fair game. And we have tile floor. I've contemplated an electric fence around the whole table, but that seems a tad drastic. Ideas???

Second would be my loud mouth five year old. For awhile I thought maybe she was going deaf because she talks so loud ALL THE TIME. But after I tested her hearing (myself, not professionally), I determined she just has a loud mouth. We've developed a signal to tell her she needs to lower the volume, but she's usually too wrapped up in what she's saying to notice. That leads to us calling her name to get her attention, and then almost yelling her name so she can hear us over he own voice! It's crazy. Would duct tape be grounds for child abuse here? Or maybe a muzzle? I'm just wondering.

Lastly, my 8 year old hates tooth paste and teeth brushing. We've tried all kinds of stuff, but the most luck we've had is using Tom's Natural toothpaste. I guess it cleans the teeth, but it just doesn't cut it when it comes to Golden Graham breath in the morning. Yuck! I usually smell his breath after he brushes and if it's still stinky I make him use a child's mouthwash. This never goes over well and I have to threaten to ground him before he uses the stuff. For his classmates' sake, PLEASE help us! Morning breath + Golden Grahams = Raunchy!!! It seems like swishing some Pinesol might help but there's surely a more economical way. Have you seen the price of cleaners lately?  

Somebody help a girl! Seriously, I need some advice!

After you solve all my problems, go over to We Are THAT Family and help some others too....

Monday, March 30, 2009

Oh Poop.....Literally

We went to the doctor's office again today. That's at least five times this month, maybe more. Honestly, I've lost count. One thing's for sure - I do not enjoy these trips.

The outer waiting area isn't so bad. There are other kids (who are probably carrying who knows what diseases), lots of chairs to choose from (which are no doubt covered in germs), and a big flat screen television with cartoons (no complaints here).

It's the exam rooms that are the killers - the inner chambers. They're tiny and full of things your kids aren't supposed to touch. The nurse always asks a couple of questions and then walks out, closing that door behind her and leaving me all alone with my monkeys. She promises the doctor will be right there, but can we please just stop the charade? We all know it will be a very long time.

The first five minutes are okay. We play I Spy and sing If You're Happy and You Know It.

The next five minutes are spent jiggling a baby on the knee and playing animal charades with the older ones.

The next five minutes I paced with the baby while the older two played follow the leader. (I tried to play but my body just can't jump. It hurts. I'm old.)

We calculated that there were nearly 300 dinosaurs on the wallpaper border.

We read books. We ate snacks. We washed all the snack crumbs off of our hands.

Still no doctor.

I checked the time and my emails on my phone. I pretended to not see the girls playing with the exam lights. I entertained Joshua.

Still no doctor.

And then I noticed Aulora behind the chair. She was very still and very quiet. You'd think I would have learned my lesson on one of our previous doctor visits this month.

I didn't.

I somehow had to clean up a dirty panty mess while holding a baby and hoping that the doctor would not choose that moment to walk in. The moment I was scooping a log out of my daughter's pants and cleaning her with a couple of wipes the best I could, because, being the super prepared mom I was today, there were no extra clothes or panties in the bag.

Surely the doctor won't ask me to undress her will he? And what in the world am I supposed to do with this wad of poo now? Should I just throw it in the trash can and then hope the smell isn't too bad?

Well, as it turns out, she didn't have to undress for her exam, the wad of poo went in the trash can, and hopefully the smell of my hand sanitizer covered up the smell. Probably not though.

Maybe she's not as potty trained as I thought.

Am I the only one who has these exciting doctor visit experiences? Anyone???

Clearly, We Have a Problem

He found the freshly grilled steak his brother was about to eat.

We now have to keep the bunk bed ladder put away in the closet.

He found the remains from our cinnamon rolls on Saturday morning.

I promise I feed this child.

He decided to investigate Daddy's laptop and books.

Here he is trying to figure out how to scoot the chair out so he can get on the table.

He found his big brother's desk with the newest lego creation.

And by the way.....

the child still won't walk.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

I Heart Bars

When John David was little, I bought these blocks made from old barn wood off of Ebay. I just loved them.

Now I have these blocks in Joshua's room and I still love them. Recently though, everytime I walk in there I find this:

My eight year old is just too funny.....

Friday, March 27, 2009

Picture Thought

Even though the focus is wrong, I just LOVE this picture. They were checking each others tongues to see what color they were.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Take What You Get

It's been one of those weeks around here. You know the kind I'm talking about - too much work, not enough sleep, sick kids, extra laundry (thanks to the sick kids), mud and dirt constantly tracked in the house (thanks to ongoing landscaping), presidential debate bumping my Tuesday night television shows. Serious stuff friends.

The point in all of that is that I'm tired. Dog tired. So tonight, when I was getting the girls ready for bed, I was not happy to find that Julia's hair was a huge mess of tangles. (If you've not seen this child in person then you may not know that she has a LOT of hair.)

I had neatly braided her hair this morning before school, but at some point in the afternoon she decided to change clothes and take out her braids. Then she decided to make a "club house" using all of my nice throw pillows and decorative blankets. Then she put my basket of Pier 1 looking potpourri in her club house so everything would be pretty while she ate some yogurt which she sneaked out of the refrigerator. (Where was I? I was trying to teach piano lessons. Thanks for asking.)

Back to tonight and the tangly hair. I asked, "Julia, what in the world is in your hair???"

She looked at me in the mirror and said, "Yogurt," in a sing song voice.

"When did you eat yogurt?" I wanted to know.

"Earlier, in my club house."

"Hmmm...." There was silence for a minute or two as I desperately tried to fix her mess of hair. I was so tired and wanting to go to bed (refer to the first paragraph) and finally asked her, "Is this fun?"

"Not for me," she answered.

"Do you think it's fun for me???"

"Well, you wanted to be a mommy so you got disobedient kids. Take what you get and you don't throw a fit!" She was giggling by now.

So was I.

I guess as a parent there are lots of times that we just need to "take what we get and not throw a fit". Or better yet, maybe I should practice 1 Thessalonians 5:18....

"No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus."

Thank you, Jesus, for my mischievous little monkeys. They are precious in Your sight at all times. Help me remember to see them through Your eyes - even when they're covered in crusty yogurt.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Aulora is Now Potty Trained

She is, however, not panty trained.

So Not Smart But Oh So Sweet

Back a few weeks ago when we were in the depths of sick, I went in to my room where I had Julia sleeping on a pallet. Big brother and baby sister had both found their way to Julia's side and, before long, they were all asleep together. It was precious.

It was also stupid since they were all sick within a couple of days. At least I have a nice picture to show for all the trouble it ended up being. Right? Maybe?

Yeah, probably not. It was a lot of trouble.....

Monday, March 23, 2009

Mad Dog Disease

I just spent the last hour getting pictures off of my camera and sorting them into their correct folders. I still haven't even gotten to my second camera yet! Ahhhhh! I have tons of pictures from our trip to Tulsa and a side trip John and John David made to a family member's farm. Just the other day I discovered that I also have gobs of stuff on my second camera that I forgot about. We're talking the kids' fall costumes, birthday stuff, and I don't even know what else.

What saddens me right now is that I don't have time to edit and post anything. So for now, I'll leave you with this:

Do you recognize this picture? It's from the Dr. Suess book Go Dog, Go. My mom grew up loving that book and she passed that love on to me. I've now shared with my own kids and it's a favorite for sure. One of the first times I read this with John David (it's been quite a while, but I didn't have a way to post a picture of the page) we spent a long time just studying this page. It was fun to look at what all the different dogs were doing.

Do you see the white dog towards the center of the layout? The one opening presents? When John David saw that dog he noticed that the dog looked kind of mad. I agreed that he did indeed look mad. John David then said, "Yeah, he's probably just mad 'cause he got clothes or underwear in his present." I'll never forget that. It was just so "John David".

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Chick-fil-A Song

We have no Chickfila here. Boo. Somebody bring me a #1 with no pickles! Pwease!!!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Teeth Brushing and our Kids

If you are like me (as in you have kids and brushing teeth sometimes just seems like more trouble than it's worth) then you should really read this post written by a dental hygienist. It's very informative, inspiring (in a "kick you in the rear" kind of way), and a little scary. 

Thanks, Team Hill, for a great post.....

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Birthday Thoughts

Is it tacky to write a birthday post for myself? I'm thinking not, especially since I'm not soliciting gifts or anything like that. (Please note that any and all gifts will be happily received though! hehehe)

Anyway, I am 29 today. The start of my birthday was great (as great as can be when it's rainy and cold and you have to get up at 6:30 in the morning and you stayed up until 1:30 the night before). John made me breakfast in bed! He tries to act like he doesn't know how to cook, but let me tell you - that man can get around in a kitchen. It was so sweet.

The day went rapidly downhill as I had a 9:30 dental appointment to get my very first ever cavity filled. I can't tell you how nervous I was! I really did think I was going to pass out. Turns out it wasn't too bad, but my knees were like jelly afterwards from being so uptight about it all. And now half my mouth is dead so I feel pretty freakish. Oh well.

We made dinner here at home and the kids made me a birthday cake. I was serenaded a number of times with various birthday songs and was named the "birthday queen" by Julia. There was nothing fancy, but it was perfect.

I've done a lot of thinking lately as this birthday has been approaching. I now have 1 year until the big 3-0 and I would really like to, ahem, polish things up a bit before then. I've done some great things in my 29 years, but it's not enough. I want to do better. I want to be better. And I'm not talking losing weight or giving up my Maggie Moo treats (although that first thing wouldn't hurt too much but let's face it - my Maggie Moo addiction is just too far gone), but rather the important things in life.

The spiritual things. The wifely things. And the mommy things.

So here's to first things first. Here's to stepping it up and allowing The Potter to start spinning that wheel again. Here's to caring for my children like they are the great blessings and rewards the Bible tells me they are. Here's to letting go of the earthly and striving for the eternal. Here's to a one year count down to 30.....

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Smelling Good in the 'Hood

I recently discovered two new products that I LOVE! The first is this Caress body wash. Is this new on the market? I have no idea, but it's new for us. My husband managed to get his hands on it and use it even before I did. (He was tired of the old Caress smell, he said. Isn't that manly sounding?) Anyway, we both agreed that it is the best! It reminds me of the Bath and Body Works scent "sensual amber" (which, by the way, my mother-in-law bought me one time and is it just me, or is that a little awkward??? hehehe) I like this Caress scent, "evenly gorgeous", even better though and at less than $4 a bottle, it's a much better deal.

Here's the second thing I'm loving around here. Johnson's new shampoo + conditioner! I have to say, I wasn't overly impressed with its ability to slay the tangles (my daughter has super long and tangly prone hair), but the smell is awesome. (I'm all about the smell, people.) It is so sweet and kind of smells like you've put perfume in your kid's hair all day. I've even been using it some and then I catch myself smelling my hair all day!

Jump over to The Diaper Diaries for more "Things I Love Thursday".......

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Pretty Shampoo Bottles

I really love pretty looking bottles and containers. It doesn't matter if it's going to be in a drawer or cabinet or closet or, in this case, the shower - I like pretty!

When I was given some nice (and expensive - youch!) shampoo and conditioner from Bath and Body Works I was a really happy girl. My shower looked classy. And even though I tried to ration it out and only allow my husband to wash his hair weekly, it didn't work. The bottles were soon empty. Boohooo!

I couldn't bear to throw them out. At the time, we were going to be moving into our newly remodeled "Piece", so I held on to them. As soon as we moved in, one of the first things I did was to pour much cheaper, yet perfectly acceptable shampoo and conditioner into those bottles. I was thrilled to place them in my shower! Now, whenever the bottles are empty, I just refill them again with whatever cheapo stuff I bought at Wally World. My wallet is happy and my eyes are happy too. And you can bet that I'll keep using these same old bottles until their sad little paper labels are falling off!

I have also been known to pour generic brand stuff out of it's ugly containers into my pretty name brand containers in my kitchen too. It's a sickness, really. (But as long as we're pointing fingers, my husband chooses his orange juice based on the pretty bottle - never mind that it costs almost twice as much! He'll deny it, but it's true.)

We heart pretty bottles. =)

If you've never been over to We Are THAT Family, you should totally go! On Wednesdays there's lots of good stuff that might just work for you! Check it out!

White Trash Here

John David and Julia were helping Daddy in the yard the other day,
getting it ready for the new fence.

I'm not sure whose idea it was, but they were happy as could be at just the though of getting into a trash can. At one point, Julia lost one of her flipflops and was diving all the way to the bottom of the can trying to find it.

It was like having my own two little grouches right in my own back yard!

I can't believe we let our kids do this. I feel somewhat better to know that as soon as they came inside, they were herded into the bathroom to be bathed. That, and the fact that this was actually a recycle can, not an actual trash can. That's better, right?

Birthday at Carino's

All the family went to Carino's a couple of weekends ago to celebrate Mimi's "39th" birthday.

Joshua entertains Gran and D

John David helped take care of Aulora

One of those rare pictures of me with one of the kids!
(That's Julia's arm grabbing Joshua)

Our family with Mimi
(it was past bedtime - that should explain this picture)

Julia and Mimi

Julia helped cut the cake and serve it

Aulora LOVES cake. That's my girl!

Aunt Kara and Uncle Maka with Aulora

Blogging is a Pain in the....

....ankle. Really. Long story as to why, but currently my computer is on a bench in the corner of our bedroom. It's too low to use a chair and so I sit on the floor whenever I'm on the computer. Almost exactly one year ago, I sprained my ankle and then I sprained it twice more in the last couple of months. It finally dawned on my yesterday why my ankle has been hurting me again lately. It's all that sitting on it while on the computer!

I'm wondering if John got any sleep last night. I tossed and turned and whimpered for hours because my ankle was throbbing. I finally took some Tylenol but even that didn't really help.

This is quite a problem I have now - blogging with a very soar ankle or no blogging with a healthy ankle. I think we all know what the answer must be. ;)

Monday, March 09, 2009

Our Hearts Are Sad

We love you, Patrick and Misty. Erin Grace was blessed to have you as Mommy and Daddy while she was here. Our prayers are for you and your family today. Hugs......

Sunday, March 08, 2009

My Martha-ish Side Rethinks Things

I was raised to always, and I do mean always, make my bed. A clean house revolves around a made bed, right? This philosophy has always made sense to me and I'm a firm believer. Well, I was a firm believer. But like the title of this post says, my Martha-wanna-be-self is rethinking things.

I do love the way a made bed looks, no doubt about it. My day is much more productive and I'm generally in a better mood. And I used to think a made bed feels so much better to get into at night. And that's where the problem lies. I now think an already-slept-in bed is oh so much more comfortable to get in.

So do I:
  • not ever make my bed again (unless company is coming!) and enjoy the comfy feel of falling into it at night?
  • make my bed every morning as usual and then thrash about in the covers and with the pillows to simulate that slept in feel?
  • go with a weekday/weekend thing where I make the bed Monday-Friday and on Saturday-Sunday go all sloth like?
I found a list of 10 reasons to make your bed on another blog. Not really anything I didn't already know though.

Here are some stats for you:
  • 45% of people make their bed everyday
  • 50% of people make their bed occasionally
  • 5% of people never do
This is not a laziness thing for me, because seriously, you can make your bed in 2 minutes or less right? It's purely a comfort thing. But the experts seem to disagree with me. Those Zen and Feng Shui people say you will sleep much more restfully if you get into a neatly made bed.

I'm pretty certain that my neatness lovin' self will win out and the bed will continue to be made every day, but.......maybe I should sleep on it. ;)

What do you think?

Some Links for your Sunday Afternoon Web Surfing Pleasure

"First Time and With a Cheerful Attitude, a Thought for Mothers" is from a blog that I have started reading. The author of this blog is quite conservative, so you may not agree with everything (though I find myself convicted many times!), but this post is, I believe, right on the money.

"Helping Hands and Tying Heartstrings"
is a wonderful post about raising our children to be helpful. I think we expect too little of our kids many times and they need us to expect more!

Tip Junkie is a fun blog to check out! It's always full of ideas, craft, tips, and demos. I would definitely spend more time there if I had more time to spend!

I was looking for a teriyaki chicken recipe the other day and came across this one. I didn't follow it exactly - I used teriyaki sauce instead of soy sauce and I cooked it on our little George Foreman grill instead of the outside grill. I was concerned that I did something wrong when I saw the color and consistency of the marinade (it was a very light coffee color and it was sort of lumpy), but it turned out so good! VERY moist and tasty. I served it with rice (from my new rice cooker that I love!) stir fry vegetables. I think the whole idea of using mayo as part of a marinade has opened up a whole new cooking world for me! =)

I'm considering signing up for this online meal plan site. It's $5 a month and many blogger moms swear it has cut their grocery bill in half. What do you think?

And because all of our children need more toys, have fun drooling over this list of toys worth buying. I've had this bookmarked for awhile and used it before Christmas.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Murphy's Law is Alive and Well

My whole day has been an exercise in proving the existence of Murphy's Law. I was most definitely not a willing participant. The day was filled with things like:

  • furious mopping immediately followed by one large bowl of Fruity Pebbles spilled by one 5 year old.....as soon as that was cleaned up there was a very leaky sippy cup that spewed lemonade everywhere
  • two freshly bathed babies that both decided to poo as soon as their bath was done - one was wearing a diaper and one was wearing panties. The one wearing panties actually pooed her pants twice tonight.
  • trying really hard to get dinner made but the 2 year old kept crawling in the fridge to get juice (even though I already gave her some) - I moved away from dinner to pull her out of the fridge and in the process burned the food and filled the house with smoke.
  • also in the process more juice spilled on the floor
  • during dinner we were serenaded with "heart and soul" on the piano by a visiting family member. i really don't like that song.
  • the baby was down in bed for the night but the girls decided to go in and turn on the light and get in the bed with him. he didn't go down again for quite a while
  • I opened the dryer door to take out the clothes and a little brown perfectly shaped ball fell out to the floor. I picked it up to see what it was - it was poo. Why? How? Who? What? When? I have no answers.
  • I desperately need and want a shower, but I think all the hot water is going to be gone. Everyone else in the family bathed tonight and the washer and the dishwasher have been going too.
  • The 2 year old just knocked down the ironing board and iron. It's 10:08. WHY are there children awake in my house???
  • watching American Idol and the dvr recording ended right before they announced the third wild card winner
  • it's 11:20 and there are STILL two little girls wide awake on their beds. they are also methodically stripping down layer by layer. (it's hot here!)
I told you. Murphy is mean, mean, mean.

On a better note:
  • John found the American Idol result online (they took four? crazy!)
  • brownies are in the oven (don't judge me - I earned it today - and yes, there will be ice cream and strawberries and hot fudge with my brownies)
  • there is enough hot water left for a shower
  • my 8 year old son is going to school in the morning. We need a break from each other. (have I mentioned that he has had strep throat this week? I waited in a community health clinic with all 4 kids for 2 hours to find that out yesterday)
  • I'm going to watch CSI while I eat my healthy late night snack (snicker, snicker) after I take a good hot shower.
Take that, Murphy!

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Oh How I Missed Her

We just got the girls back from John's parents. They were with them for two weeks and let me tell you, you can forget a lot in two weeks.

For instance, you can forget that it takes only a moment for a little monkus to make some serious mischief. Aulora was happily playing in my room last night while I did some work (okay, I was on the computer but I consider that work). I walked around my bed to check on her and found this:

Wait a minute - what do you have???

She wasn't sure if she was in trouble or not.

I think she figured she was okay since I was taking pictures.

I really heart that girl, messes and all.