September 29, 2008

Not Me Monday

This is part of a blog carnival hosted by My Charming Kids (on my link list as "pray for Stellan). It seems pretty fun and I'm giving it a try this week! Here goes!

I did not go camping with my family this weekend and go the whole time without brushing my kids' teeth. Nope, not me!

I did not let my 3-year-old put a cigar (still in wrapper) in his mouth and pretend to smoke it so he could be like his dad and grandpa while we were camping. No way, I would NEVER do that!

I did not get so excited while catching a fish on the boat this weekend, that I stopped watching Gabby and later turned to find her spilling chicken blood (from the chicken liver bait) all over herself and the carpet of the rented boat. That would be completely disgusting and I would never allow a thing like that to happen. I also would not scream in horror and scare her half to death while frantically washing chicken blood off of her, if that were to happen....I ALSO would not snap at my father-in-law for leaving bait within her reach IF something like that were to happen. I am much too responsible and polite to do any of that.

I also did not leave said fish on the line until Steven got back on the boat (from the jet ski with Grandpa) and let him reel it in and think he caught it. That would be silly. I wouldn't do that!

I did not hurt my back riding a jet ski around the lake on Saturday. I'm only 25 years old. 25-year-old women do not get back-aches from acting like teenagers. That only happens to old people. That certainly wasn't me.

I did not go to Burger King with my family (that's not healthy) and convince Steven to climb up to the top of the play-place even though he was scared, thinking it would get him to overcome his fear. I did not, then have to send my husband up the play-place to retrieve Steven from his place, frozen at the top. That would make me a bad mom and I would never do that.

My husband and I did not take out a "loan" from Steven's piggy bank to go get ice cream because we drained our checking account. Nope, that would be embarrassing, even if I did do that, I certainly wouldn't admit a thing like that!

I did not pick all the crusty boogers out of Gabby's nose a few minutes ago, then wipe them on her shirt. Why would I do something like that? I wouldn't. Not me....gross.

My husband and I did not tell Steven today, that if he was quiet for one minute, we would give him a quarter. Then time him, congratulate him and give him a nickle. No, that would be dishonest and, well, not very nice. I would not do something like that.

That's my Not Me Monday. I certainly did not do any of those things this week! I encourage you to all share the things that you have not done each week, too. It feels great to not confess all of those things you would NEVER do!

September 23, 2008

Gabby's First Birthday Card!

Gabby's birthday is just a few days away. I can't believe it. Today, she received her first birthday card. Her first birthday card, ever! How exciting. Here is a play-by-play of her reaction to the card she got from her sweet Aunt Michelle.

"What a cute card...if only I could read it..."

"Money! Woo-hoo! We're hittin' up Babies-R-Us tomorrow!"

"Oh, Mom! I didn't know you were there!"

September 22, 2008

Four Day Update

***Update: Shortly after posting this, I found Steven being sneaky in the fridge. He was enjoying some butter. Yes, butter. There was a stick of it in the door with the end cut off and he was sticking his finger in and licking it repeatedly.***

Friday: We drove up to Austin to see our good friend, Dan and Julia Sheppard. They have been in New Mexico all summer and we hadn't seen them in a long time. It was so nice to spend the evening with them. Dan barbecued some chicken - he is the best barbequer I know. It was so yummy. The best part, though was just sitting around catching up on our lives together. Julia is such a good friend. We talked about our kids for the first half hour or so, then she said, "no more talking about our kids." It was so great. For the rest of the evening, we talked about books we've read recently, politics (not that we knew a lot about this subject, but we did share what opinions we do have on the election), and whatever else came to mind. It really made me realize that I actually have other things to discuss beside my kids. It seems that anymore, when with friends here on base, all we ever talk about is our husband's jobs and our kids. Like that is all that defines us. There is so much more to me than just that. My husband and kids ARE the most important things in my life, but there IS more to my life. I have other interests and other hobbies and other thoughts in my little head. It was so nice to sit with a good friend and explore all these other things for once. Thank you for a great evening, Dan and Julia!

Saturday: What a day. We were all pretty tired, having not arrived home from Austin until 12:30am. The kids and I all napped in the afternoon, Steve zoned out in front of college football games most of the day and not much got done in the house. Oh well. My constant food-fight with Steven peaked on Saturday, also. Every single day, I struggle to get him to eat. All he wants is cereal and cheese. Seriously, he wants to live on cereal and cheese. He wants it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. He won't even consider eating any of his old favorites. Saturday, I gave him a list of choices, and he picked chicken nuggets (homemade, healthy ones), cheese and applesauce. He ate the cheese, mixed his ketchup with his applesauce and pushed his plate away. I asked him to eat at least 2 nuggets. A few minutes later, two nuggets were gone. I was thrilled....until I saw them on the floor under the table. I felt exhausted. I felt so worn down by this. This is EVERY day, EVERY meal. I took his plate away and said something to the effect of , "Fine. Just be hungry. I give up." Then I sat down and cried. I just felt so beaten down. Thankfully, my wonderful husband, father of this difficult child, took over. He sat down with him, disciplined him for being deceptive, then got him to eat all of his chicken. I really feel like giving up this fight. Should I just let him eat cereal and cheese until he outgrows this? Or should every meal be a big fight? I've tried EVERYTHING I can think of to get him to eat. I've given him "meals" of 10 -12 small options so he can just pick what he wants and eat it all with his fingers. He usually finds the item with cheese and says he's done. I've let him pick what he's going to eat from a long list of options, I've hid things in kid-friendly forms. Nothing. Any advice from Mommies who've been there is appreciated!

Sunday: I've joined a ladies' Sunday school class, and it so nice. I really enjoy it. It is a small group of women and it's so easy to be open and really share and pray and study the Word together. I've really been enjoying it. Steven LOVES his Sunday school class, also. He told me that he learned about Jesus and how He fed the lots of people. He couldn't remember what He fed them, but knew He fed them. It's so great that he's learning these stories. After church, we had lunch and went for a 10-mile bike ride. When we got back, Gabby had a rash on her torso and legs. I think it may have been heat rash, but I'm not sure. It seems like it's always something with her, lately. Thursday-Saturday, she ran a fever on and off with no other symptoms. It got up to 102 at one point, but stayed around 100 most the time. It was gone Sunday, then came the rash. I'm just keeping an eye on it. I'd like to stay out of the pediatrics office for a little while longer, but we'll see if the rash goes away soon.

Monday: I had MOPS this morning. It was really nice. I think I'm going to enjoy my new MOPS group. Our next meeting is a brunch out, which will be so nice. Going to a restaurant without a high chair, a booster seat and kids menus and crayons? I don't remember what that's like. Both kids are napping now and Steve and I are sitting here, both on our laptops. Maybe we should put them down and spend time together.... :-)

Now you're all caught up!

September 16, 2008

Top Ten Tuesday

My trip to the Commissary this week was a big one. You know the kind where the cart is so full and heavy, that it's hard to turn? The one where the receipt has to be folded into fourths just to put in my purse, the one that makes me so thankful the kids were with Steve because I couldn't have done an hour and a half in the grocery store with them? Well, it has inspired me to share my top ten favorite grocery store finds. Some are actual groceries, some are cleaning supplies, some are completely random things that I just happened to find at my grocery store and love! So, here's my list:

1. Balmex diaper rash cream. I have used every kind of diaper rash cream out there in the last three years. Steven has sensitive skin and got rashes ALL THE TIME. I just found the amazing Balmex, though. Poor Steven never experienced it's amazing power.

2. Kleen King Stainless Steel and Copper Cleaner. I have this stainless steel pan that always gets this nasty black crusty stuff on the edges, I had given up cleaning it after scrubbing and scrubbing at it every single time I washed it, to no avail. Then I tried this stuff. I sprinkled it on, rubbed the stain with a paper towel and VIOLA! Gone. Amazing!

3. Lysol 4 in 1 Disinfecting Wipes. I've used some kind of disinfecting wipe in my bathroom for a long time, but these are a lot better than the others I've used. They have a better smell and cut the grime a lot faster. I have one under each bathroom sink and use them on everything, sinks, toilets, bathtubs, floors...

4. Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. I had a friend complaining about Sharpie marker on her sewing machine the other day. I told her to just use a Magic Eraser. She didn't know what that was. What? How can any homemaker survive without a Magic Eraser. It cleans EVERYTHING! Grape juice on white counter-top, permanent marker on...anything, shoe-scuff marks on walls and floors. These things really are magic! (it's the gross-looking dirty, white thing in the picture, it gets a lot of use....maybe time for a new one!)

5. Fabuloso. This is my new favorite floor-cleaner. I fill a bucket with some of this and hot water, take a rag and wipe all the floorboards and kitchen cabinets, and appliances down, then use it to mop my tile and hardwood floors. The house smells good for days. Not a harsh, 'I just cleaned' smell, but a nice, pleasant smell. Love it!

6. Forehead Thermometer Strip. This is the most random thing I've found at the grocery store, but it is awesome. I just hold it on the kids' foreheads and watch the display. It takes all of two seconds to read their temperature and they don't mind it one bit.

7. Skippy Natural. I looked high and low at Whole Foods for a GOOD TASTING all natural peanut butter. After trying several brands, I decided there wasn't one. The thing that makes peanut butter tasty must be the hydrogenated oils. Then I found this one. No hydrogenated oil, totally natural, no stirring. Tastes EXACTLY like regular Skippy. Love it!

8. Sunsilk Captivating Curls Leave-in Creme. My whole life, I have struggled with my curly hair. I can put gel and moose and all kinds of stuff in it, and it is either a) Still Frizzy or b) Crunchy. Then I found this. Yes! Not that my hair looks beautiful every day, but it is neither frizzy nor crunchy, now! Yay!

9. Kashi Go Lean Strawberry Flax frozen waffles. My kids love these. 6 oz of fiber and 8 oz of protein in each all natural serving. I just cut them in quarters and give them to the kids, still frozen. They are the easiest snack every, and pretty healthy!

10. Past Roni Nature's Way pasta sides. Okay, it's not all-natural, but the pasta part is natural, it has no preservatives and no artificial flavors. I can pronounce all of the ingredients and it makes me feel a little better about occasionally serving my family something from a box. Not to mention, as R.R. would say, "Yum-O!"
Random: If the dining chairs are not pushed in, Gabby climbs onto them, then onto the table. Yesterday, I removed her from the table, then pushed the chair in. So then she got onto the chair and didn't know what to do next. Steven thought it looked like fun, so he joined her. Here they are under the table. So cute!

September 13, 2008

Dang it!

Stupid weather guys were right. Steven just ran inside yelling, "Mom! It's raining! Ahhhh! My shoes got wet!" I didn't see it coming. (If you have no idea why I'm talking about this, read my last post)

Hurricane Ike Update...

It is/was no where near us. Two days ago, the local weather posted a 100% chance of rain for Saturday (today). There are a few white, fluffy clouds in our sunny sky today. I remember seeing the forecast at 100% (which I've never seen before) and thinking, "wouldn't it be funny if it didn't rain?" Ha.

September 11, 2008


*Gabby's 1st word!! My little girl is talking! Okay, to me, (I don't know if this is how all Mommies work) it is NOT a word if I stare in her face and say, "MaMa" and she repeats, "MaMa." That is just repeating. That is not speaking. It is NOT a first word until it is used spontaneously and in context. Yes, I have strict 1st word rules! But she's done it! Last night, she and Steven were in the bath. She stood up and dropped her cup over the edge onto the floor. She then leaned over the edge and looked down at it and said, "UH-OH!" Oh my gosh! I was so excited! She has repeated UH-OH before, but never has she said it on her own...and she said it in context! Wow. Now, I know that given my strict rules, the validity of UH-OH being her first "word" may be questioned, but I do consider it a word. It is a specific sound, used in specific situations to express a specific idea. That is the same 1st word that Steven had. I really don't think most Moms have the same 1st word rules that I do, because most baby's 1st word is da-da, which Gabby says; but she doesn't say it to Steve, and she's not talking about her daddy when she's saying it, it's just a fun sound to make, so I don't consider it a word. Am I weird? Even if I am, I'm excited that Gabby said her first word!

* Hurricane Ike is supposed to blow through here on Saturday. We're not that worried about it. By WE, I mean Steve and I; not the city of San Antonio. Oh, no. THEY are freaking out BIG TIME. We went to Wal-mart last night to pick up a few things and noticed that ALL the bottled water was gone. Every last bottle. And Wal-mart was super crowded at like 3:00 and a Wednesday. Yep, everyone is freaking out. Here's why:

That's from The Weather Channel - it's the projected path. (If you don't know where San Antonio is, just know it is in the RED!) Although, we figure we're about 150 miles from the coast, and as hurricanes move over land, they lose some power....right? So it can't be THAT bad...right? Maybe we're the dumb ones.... :-) Don't get me wrong, we do plan to move the trucks out from under the tree, move Steve's motorcycle to the shed and tie down anything in the yard. We're just not rushing out to buy all the bottled water and batteries in the city!

* Pretty flowers. I picked these off the trees in my yard today.They are making me so happy every time I see them! :-)

Well, that's enough randomness for now. Back to cookie baking!

September 7, 2008


Update on Gabby: She still has the rash, but it seems to be a little lighter today than yesterday, so maybe it's starting to get better. I was too scared to take her to the church nursery today. I could just see the other moms freaking out and holding their babies away from my girl, thinking she has the plague or something. She had two big welts on her eyes today, it looked like she had bruised eyes. It's strange to watch throughout the day, as some welts fade and new ones appear. But Gabby knows no different. She is happy and completely herself.

Update on Steven being three years old: Steven is very proud to be three. He knows that he is a big boy now. He had a great birthday. He was so happy and excited all day; it was so fun to just watch him. After I tucked him into bed that night, I cried. I just can't believe my little baby is three years old.

Here's Steven in front of his big 3 that we colored and put stickers on the afternoon of his birthday

Steven's Birthday cupcakes. Look at that face! He was so happy!

Steven with his ridiculous pile of loot

Update on our weekend: Yesterday, we went back out to Canyon Lake, rented a boat and spent the day out on the water. It was a wonderful day.

Today, we had a fun day as a family. Since we were heathens and skipped church, we went out to the park and had a breakfast-picnic and let the kids run around while it was still nice and cool out. It was a really fun start to our day. We then ran some errands and browsed around a furniture store. Steve and I want to buy a bedroom set one day, but can't agree on a style we both like. We also looked at kids' beds and Steven thought that was so fun. He was on top of every bunk-bed in the place. Once home, Gabby and I napped for most of the afternoon. It was pure bliss. I LOVE Sunday afternoon naps, followed by Sunday afternoon football. John Madden's voice puts me to sleep. I love it.

I'm very excited about tomorrow. The first day of MOPS! Woo-hoo! I will update on that soon.

Now you're all caught up!

September 5, 2008

Poor Gabby

Today was the third day in a row that we were in the pediatrics' office. Wednesday we were there for Steven's 3-year check up, which was perfect. Wednesday afternoon, we noticed blotches on Gabby's arms and legs. We thought they were some kind of bite. Maybe a mosquito or flea or something got into her bed the night before. Thursday morning, her arms and legs were COVERED in the blotches and she had a few on her torso. I took her in, and the doctor we saw thought they looked like bites, too and put her on antibiotics because some of them looked like they were getting infected (so he said, I didn't see any infection, but assumed he knew better than me). So that night (last night) we put her to bed in Steven's room in a playpen, with clean bedding, thinking that there are bugs in her room...that we can't see....invisible bugs....bugs that are still there after washing all her bedding and vacuuming her mattress. This morning (Friday) she has even MORE welts and blotches and they all look bigger and worse. So, I took her in again and while we were gone, pest control was here, bombing our house. She saw her usual doctor, PTL, who also thought the 'bites' looked bad, and wanted to put her on steroids to treat the welts. But she decided to pull another doctor in for another opinion, first. The second doctor walked in, and from the doorway she immediately said, "Those aren't bites. That's Erythema Multiforme." Third time's a charm, right? The third doctor to look at her, came up with a diagnosis that makes much more sense to us. Erythema Multiforme Minor, is what Gabby seems to have and it will go away in 1-3 weeks on it's own. The doctors seem to think it was caused by a virus she must have had last week (after I told them she had some diarrhea last week). They swabbed her for Strep, also since that is a common cause for this condition. We'll find out later today if that was positive.

I feel so much better. I was so worried about her being eaten alive in her bed. I work so hard to keep a clean house, and I felt like I had let her down, allowing something horrible to be in her room biting her all night. I am so glad that it is not something serious and that it will clear up on its own. We have to keep an eye on it, make sure she doesn't develop any other symptoms, or any blisters on the blotches. Erythma Multiforme Minor, can turn into EM Major, which can be really bad but I'm sure she'll be just fine. Thank you, Lord!

Here are some pictures of the progress of Gabby's Erythema Multiforme: if you do not want to see a NASTY looking rash on a poor little baby, DON'T SCROLL DOWN! It's just that if I were reading this, I would be thinking, "What do they look like? How bad are they?"

This is Gabby at Steven's birthday party. She climbed up onto the table by herself (yes, by herself) to help herself to a second cupcake. (She's naked b/c of the mess from cupcake #1). If you look closely, you can see some faint blotches on her armpits. This is when we first noticed them.

This one, and the one below are from Thursday morning, the first day I took her in. Just 12 hours after the cupcake picture was taken.

This is Gabby right now, as she naps. They are much bigger and darker than they have been before.

So, that's what we've been up to for the last few days. So please keep my little Gabby in your prayers. Pray that she will heal quickly, that the rash won't itch too much, and that she doesn't have Strep.

P.S. Found out no strep. PTL!

September 3, 2008

Happy Birthday, Steven Ray!

My little Steven Ray is three years old! I can't believe how quickly three years has gone, yet I can't seem to remember what life was like before him. It feels like he's always been a part of me.

Three years ago today, I started having contractions at 2:50am. I waited 5 long hours, laboring at home until 8am, when they were 3 minutes apart and we left for the hospital. By 10am, I was a happy girl with an epidural. The anesthesiologist had trouble getting the epidural started and had to stick me 3 times, which was no fun but still well worth it! Steve, my parents and I spent much of the day playing cards, watching Hurricane Katrina coverage (it was on every channel) and College Football. At 7pm, it was time to push and my sweet little baby boy was born at 8:09pm, September 3, 2005. He screamed and screamed. I thought his little voice would get tired of screaming, but he just kept right on screaming until he was clean, swaddled and in my arms. He had the craziest cone-head I've ever seen and a fractured collar bone from the birth, but was absolutely perfect and healthy, getting a 9 on both APGAR scores. Looking back at the pictures, he kind of looked like an alien, but I thought he was beautiful.

And today, he is the cutest, sweetest, most well-behaved (most of the time!), most intelligent, talkative, funny and happy little boy. We get compliments often on how polite and obedient he is. He has blessed my and Steve's life more in these three years than I could ever say.

Yesterday, I asked him what he wanted for his birthday, and wrote down his responses. Here they are:

a new house

a carpet for my new house
a big can

(what do you want in the can?)

a bag in the can

to sing outside

big racecars

The King, and the naughty green guy from Cars...and Mac and Mater

a bowl with a 'nack in it (nack = snack)

a chair, a lunch chair to put some nacks on it

to buy some little chairs and a little table

a racecar bed

and a black pen like you have

(what would you like to eat for dinner on your birthday?)

a sandwich

(what kind?)

one of those yummy ones

and eggs and 'namas ('namas = bananas)

(are you sure, you get to eat WHATEVER you want)

Oh, I want to eat a pig

Happy Birthday, Steven Ray! I love you so much!