Friday, September 29, 2006

Party in my crib... 3 AM!!!

Have you seen those pajamas for babies?
This seems to be the invitation that Sawyer's been sending out to his imaginary friends for the last few nights.
He's been awake from about 2 to 4 AM for four out of the past five nights or so. Just talking to himself, entertaining himself, crying a little here and there -apparently just to make sure we're still around, cuz he doesn't really want us to help him get back to sleep. It's driving me nuts. He's not hungry, he's not too warm or too cold, I don't think he's in pain... I just don't know what his deal is. We've tried ignoring him; it seems like he'd just stay in there awake all night that way. We've tried rocking him for a bit, patting him in his bed for a bit; then he just wants to play.
So last night I was awake later than usual, (I wasn't having any luck sleeping which is why I had to get that Some People rant out of my head...) and I heard Sawyer in his room a little after midnight. At first I just thought he was making sleeping sighs and noises or maybe talking in his sleep. But I went to listen at his door and realized he was most definitely awake. He was in there talking to himself, jumping in his crib, singing a little, and I even heard him yawn. So I went in to tuck him back in, give him a little pat, and hoped he'd go back to sleep. He was still awake when I went to bed at 1:45. I tried to go to sleep, but I couldn't fall asleep becuase I could hear him on the other side of the wall. He finally started fussing about 2:30. So I went in to try again. I think I finally stopped hearing him babbling and shaking his crib by about 3 AM.
This morning I got to thinking, he was so content in there to talk to himself and play in his bed for almost 2 hours before he started fussing for us. What if he's been doing that every night? What if he wakes up and talks to and entertains himself for quite awhile before he finally decides to let us know he's awake and bored in there? So while we think he's been awake for an hour or two, it's really like three or more??? What is up with this kid?
All I know is he'd better get his scheduled straightened out, or I'm moving his bedroom futher down the hall so I don't have to try to sleep with my head on the other side of the wall from his little all nighters!

Did I mention there were two days this week that this little man decided to only take one nap all day?! He must just be on a sleep boycott or something.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Some People

I take back what I just said about wanting to keep things short and sweet. I have to vent about something and it may take awhile, so you may as well skip over this if the amount of words intimidates you.

Sometimes people really bug me. Bugging me is putting it lightly. I hate it -and I mean HATE IT- when people think they have the right to go off on someone, get all high and mighty, act like someone has committed the worst offense in the world, tell it like it is... whatever you want to call it. All without knowing the person they are "attacking" or the whole picture of the situation they're upset about. What gives someone the right to say whatever they want, many times using whatever foul language they want, to a perfect stranger? And often times the unsuspecting person's "offense" was a fraction of what this someone makes it out to be.

Maybe I'm just too sensitive. If anyone is ever upset with me (friend or stranger) I have a tendency to replay situations over and over in my head trying to figure out what I did wrong, how they might have interpreted something I may not have meant, if I was unaware of doing something to hurt them, what I could have done different, and on and on and on. I really hate upsetting or offending people and when that does accidentally happen, I tend to dwell on it too much. So I know that's one of my faults... I value other people's (sometimes stupidly especially strangers -don't ask me why) opinions and I don't want them thinking I'm a mean or bad or inconsiderate person. Because I'm not. At least I hope I'm not.

This is obviously not the case in point, but for example... (an example of how much and how long I can let things get to me) a long time ago -like seriously eight years ago- I was driving home from work during rush hour. Now the last major intersection I had to go through before I got into my nieghborhood, was a right hand turn at this light. Pretty much everyone coming the way I was coming from was also trying to turn right. Everyday. So this right hand lane gets pretty backed up, and on this particular day was even more so. By the time I noticed that I needed to be in the right hand lane a little further back than usual, I had already missed the "end" of the line and so I slowed way down, turned on my blinker, and began looking for a gap to make my way over. I saw an opening, so I moved into that lane. I then opened my sunroof, turned up my music, got a little more comfortable in my seat, and preceeded to creep along with the traffic. The next thing I know, there's a guy on his motorcycle up along the right side of my car on the shoulder of the road yelling at me. May I also point out at this point that he is not wearing a helmet (yes we have a helmet law in Oregon). And he has a little kid on the back of his "crotch rocket", as some people so fondly refer to these bikes. He yells at me with language that would make any halfway respectable person blush, let alone the eight-year-old hanging on his back, that I need to "#$%$% watch where I'm going...%^&^%*@# could kill someone... !@#$%* self absorbed and unaware... like every other %$#@ car on the road... $%^&@# kid on my back for ^&*#$ sake."
Nevermind the fact that I HAD seen him there before I moved over into his lane. And I HAD actually turned my head and looked at him, not just checking my mirrors. And I MADE SURE I had plenty of room to get in front of him because I had a boyfriend at the time who rode a motorcycle and I was deathly afraid of not only him getting hit on his, but I became obsessively aware of any bike within like a mile radius of my car so as not to ever ever hit a rider ever or ever cut them off, make them swerve, or ever cause them trouble on the road ever. (did I mention obsessive?)
So my point is, I know I had room, I know I didn't really put him in danger, but when he got all freaked out and over reacted I felt like the worst person on earth. Of course I felt a little defensive, and a minute of thinking who's more at fault... I mean if you, Mr. Motorcycle Man, are so worried about your safety why aren't you wearing a helmet and if cars are so dangerous to motorcycles why do you have a 50 lb child on your bike?!?
But mostly I replayed it over and over in my head... what did I do wrong, could I have missed something? is everything he said really true???
I really had to finally tell myself I was really looking out the best I could, and that guy was just an idiot who maybe had a bad day, was stuck in traffic, and flew way off the handle. Nothing to do with me personally.
My question is, if someone steps on your toes, what good does it do to call them names or insult them or make them feel like crap?

You know what I mean?

You may have guessed I came across an incident today. No big deal. It just got me thinking about how people can be and all that stuff. Sorry for the random venting.
Just don't be rude to people you don't know, okay?

This post doesn't deserve a title...

Okay... WOW.
I just read over my last post and do I know how to babble aimlessly or what?!
I'm so sorry that was so long and somewhat depressing. Ryan is going to cut me off one of these days. He thinks I write too much anyway. Boy, I guess I took the opportunity to prove him right!

So, lucky for you I have not so much to say today.
Glad tomorrow's Friday! Ryan's home early and I'm getting my hair cut. And the cable guy is coming so we can finally get our tvs and computers back to normal.

One of our goals for the weekend is to get some video of Sawyer walking. He's been taking lots more steps, and with a little less coaxing than it used to take. He actually took a few on his own today, just playing on his own, nowhere close to me. We will soon have a walker on our hands, ladies and gentlemen. I don't know if I'm ready for that.
So we're going to get it on the video camera and see about getting that on here to share with you.
I'm also going to carry the camcorder around with me tomorrow for another reason. Sawyer does this new thing now whenever he hurts himself or gets in trouble or gets his feelings hurt (he's been quite sensitive these days); he gets down on his hands and knees with his head almost on the ground and just starts crawling while doing this silent/slow-motion/dramatic cry. He just slowly crawls in one direction with his head down and he keeps crawling basically until he hits a wall. Or the couch or the fireplace or my leg if he's lucky. I really don't know how to explain it well enough... it is honestly one of the funniest things I've seen a kid do. It's like he goes into this auto-pilot thing and just doesn't stop or look up or hear us or anything. We have to either pick him up mid-crawl or he hits a wall. So if I can get that on tape, I'll have to show that to you as well. Crazy kid...

Alright. Look- I can even take a short post to apologize and say I have nothing to say and turn it into a short essay! That has to take talent, doesn't it?

p.s. just had to say... I made it through ER tonight with just a little watery eye! That's progress! Maybe I will allow myself to watch this season after all.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Ups and Downs

I’ve kind of been in a bad mood the last couple of days. I don’t really know why, kind of a combination of a few things I guess, including not really feeling well. I think I’m trying to stay ahead of a cold or something. Yesterday my throat was killing me and I felt kind of achy and yucky. I felt a lot better today, just tired.

Yesterday I was just in this funk. The kids were whiney and fighting with each other and I just felt like crap. Ryan even tried to cheer me up by transferring my “paycheck” to our checking account a few days early and sent me out to Target last night for a little break. (which reminds me… lookie what I found here for all you fellow Target lovers. Notice the quote: ”This site is not associated with Target Corp. We love Target. Can’t get enough of it. Want to marry it.” Made me laugh… cuz it’s sad but true.) I picked up a few things… a couple of shirts and a pair of jeans for me, some shoes for Sawyer, some $3 pants for Savannah, and some Halloween candy for Ryan. I guess it cheered me up a little.
This reminds me of this one time a long time ago Savannah was playing with her Fisher Price little people… she was driving a family around in their car and they made their way to the "Target store" (that's what she used to call it) which was under our dining room table. Savannah ended up bumping her head pretty good and came out crying. I gave her a little hug and asked her if she was ready for lunchtime. She said no, still crying a little. I asked her if she wanted to go back to playing little people. She said no, still whimpering. I asked her what would make her feel better, and she answered, “I want you to take me to Target store.”
Pretty telling when a two year old asks to go to Target to make her feel better! Guess where mommy shops a lot?

Sawyer decided to spend close to two hours awake and fussing this morning between 2 and 4 AM. So he ended up sleeping in this morning and then took a nap from about 11 to 1:30… and decided that was the only nap he needed for the rest of the day. I tried to lay him down at about 4 PM, but no go. So needless to say, we had a very touchy baby on our hands all evening.

I need to get my butt in gear on a lot of things around here. I just can’t seem to get ahead of the game. I’ve actually been doing pretty well on keeping this place cleaned up and keeping up on the laundry and dishes and stuff. But it’s about time this place could use a good deep cleaning, and I have no desire to do that. I’ve got four packages I’ve been meaning to get together and get out in the mail for quite a while. Sorry Heidi and Holly; maybe Taegen’s will make her birthday on time. And believe it or not, we actually got Grandparent’s day (Sept. 10th) cards for all the grandparents, but do you think those ever got sent out? Maybe by next Grandparent’s day.

I just feel like being so out of it for a few days with my wisdom teeth ordeal, in the midst of having family in from out of town, and then scrambling for our camping trip, I lost some time in there and I’ve just never caught up.
I feel like I need someone to come in and get me reorganized, or give my house the once over, or take my kids for a day or two so I can do that. I just want life to slow down for a minute!!

I think I just basically have too much going on in my head. I'm trying to get organized at home, figure out when we're going to have a chance (or the money) to go back to Portland for a visit, trying to get a head start on at least planning out Christmas gifts, and in between our regular busy-ness try to work on some projects, crafts, and scrapbooking before I get even more ridiculously behind. And thinking about all that just makes me want to go to bed.

Two other up's...
~Gas prices, yay! Ryan paid 2.08 per gallon today. Three months ago it wasn't surprising to see it at 3.08!
~I finally made an appoinment for a haircut. Maybe that's just what I need;I'm sure a fresh new look will help my mood. As long as it doesn't turn out horrible! HAHA! Luckily, you can't get much worse than it is now!

There’s a recap of the first two seasons of Lost on tonight. To refresh before the Season Premiere next week. Can’t wait to see what’s going to happen this season!
Well, I’m going to watch a little of this Lost stuff and get ready for bed. I’ve had a monster headache all day that won’t go away. I’m just hoping it’s gone by morning...

How many more days till the weekend???

A Storm's a Brewin'

It was a beautiful, sunny, blue-sky morning, and it the last half hour it has rapidly gotten darker (so noticeable that Savannah asked me if it was almost bedtime already) and quite windy. It's supposed to be stormy this afternoon and it's moving in fast! And there's no end in sight... as far out as the forcast goes, it's supposed to be cold and rainy. Where are we again? Oregon???

We got outside yesterday in some of the fall sunshine. I attempted to get some weeds pulled and some plants and bushes trimmed and (yikes! already) some leaves raked up. ***boys of game night: does that bring up my housework percentage???***
The kids played up and down the driveway, Savannah trading off with her bike and her car and Sawyer cruisin' around in his walker. He was zoomin' in that thing! Followed Savannah around everywhere!
It was really nice to spend some time outside, knowing we'll be stuck indoors for at least the next week. I'm not ready to be cooped up with these kids yet!

WOW! The clouds finally let loose. Poor Mr. Bruce across the street was outside trying to get his lawn mowed before the rain, and he got caught in this downpour. He has this little old John Deere riding lawnmower that's gotta be like 40 years old (is that possible?) and it moves in what seems like slow motion. It goes along well with them in general... they walk slow, drive slow,and so why not mow slow? (they're about 85 years old if you hadn't guessed... about the sweetest old couple I've ever met)
Anyway, it's just started pouring and so Mr. Bruce is steering the mower across the front yard and all the way up their driveway. In slow motion. I think. I can hardly see him through the sheets of rain.
Seriously, I could grab Ryan's golf umbrella and walk outside and across the street to hold it over this guy's head before he even made it halfway to his garage. Old people are funny.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Check these out

Here are some random things I thought I'd share...
just a little food, fun, and maybe a laugh or two.
  • Like cupcakes? Want to try some new and original recipes? Here's a page I found while searching for the raspberry lemonade cake I never found. (the Raspberry-topped Lemon Cupcakes sure caught my attention though!) I'm gonna try quite a few of these I'm afraid
  • Here's a fun little quiz... do you remember your 80's music? I got 61 out of 100.

  • Seeing people fall cracks me up! I got this in an email ages ago, but I thought of it again the other day while flipping through channels and past America's Funniest Home Videos. (Sorry it's a tad obscene, but get over it... it's animals; it's natural.) Katie and Nicole, I thought you might enjoy this. Almost as funny as people falling! Here ya go... Why Cows Hate Winter

"The Zaky is an ergonomic infant pillow designed by a mom to mimic the size, weight, touch, and feel of her hand and forearm to help her baby with comfort, support, protection, and development. The Zaky can help calm your baby and help your baby sleep better through the night."

I had to share this because how many times, when my babies were tiny did I want to invent something like this?! While part of me thinks these weird cushion hands designed to comfort babies look extremely creepy, if I had seen these a year ago, there would have been another (sleep deprived) part of me screaming "Oh what a brilliant idea! Where can I get a pair?" What parent hasn’t had a baby at some point who won’t sleep anywhere but in your arms? Or after patting them to sleep, wake up the moment your hand leaves their little diaper butt. A pair of strange muppet like hands has often seemed like the perfect solution to me!

But you know, if we had seen this and invested in a Zaky hand, it would be almost guaranteed that my kids would have formed a long lasting, loving, security-blanket-style relationship with it.

Could I stand walking into the family room to see Sawyer curled up on the couch watching Sesame Street cuddling his big limp arm?

I can imagine the horror (the horror!) on the faces of the other children on Savannah’s first day of kindergarten when she drags her weird, old, stained soft arm into class.

And then even worse is thinking ahead in years to her first summer camp when she will want to take her Zaky hand hidden away in her suitcase and I can see it tumbling out at the most inopportune time leading to years of counseling.

All joking aside, reading the information on how the Zaky can help preemie babies, it really is a cool thing. And it's not all that expensive... I may just keep it in mind for a baby gift, especially if a baby comes along a little too early.

It's Monday

Ahhh... quiet...
Both the boys are asleep and Savannah's having a little tv time. All three kids have been in complete whine mode since Porter got here this morning. I guess they don't like Mondays either. Maybe when th babies get up from their naps we'll bundle up a little and get outside in the crisp fall sunshine.

I thought I'd recap a little more of our weekend...
Saturday we ran around town doing a bunch of errands and shopping. We got winter coats and hats and stuff for the kids. And we got lots of birthday shopping done... we've gotten a little behind on some family birthdays. And Taegan's is coming up in just another week. I can't believe it was a year ago already that we were still waiting to meet our first little niece!! It's gone so fast. And that means Sawyer's birthday is just around the corner as well. No way can my baby be so close to a year old ...
Here a couple pictures from yesterday after church. I just had to whip out the camera because all morning I kept thinking "who is this kid?!?". He looks like a little man (aka man-baby, right Katie?).

no he's not walking...
he's just doing his usual
'I'll just stand in one place forever until I have something to hold onto to walk someplace else instead of moving my feet on my own...'

Sunday we visited the church that Savannah's preschool is at; Sandstone Congregational Church. We really liked the pastor when we met him at the preschool orientation, so we thought we'd give their service a try. This church has just built a brand new church next to the old one and it's really nice. It's not a very big church... there were probably about 100, maybe 150 people there... two other babies in the nursery and in kids church all the kids (preschool and elementary) are together in one room. We both really enjoyed the pastor and the service and the people were very friendly. But a little on the older side. And they sing hymns. With an organ. I commented to Ryan when we left that before we moved out here, I didn't really think there were any churches that actually use hymnals or fill out attendance or all the old school stuff like that anymore. But so many churches out here are still soooo traditional! It reminds me of the Portland area churches like 10 or 15 years ago... where the few "contemporary" services thought they were so out there and unconventional. Now I think it's hard to find such a traditional church in the northwest. It actually felt kind of funny, being in this brand new light and bright sanctuary, but singing hymns and seeing the pastors all seated up on the stage along with the American and Christian flags next to the little old lady playing the organ. Not that I mind the hymns... there are some great ones and I like a little tradition and comfort like that. I love it when we sing sweet classic hymns within the more contemporary worship. But as much as we think we like the pastor and the service and the congregation, I think both Ryan and I would really feel like we were missing too much of something if we were just singing two hymns a week in our church service instead of the half-hour of praise and worship we're used to. This church does have a contemporary service, but it's an evening service on Sundays. I don't mind going to evening service once in a while, but I don't really want that to be our regular time. I like the feeling of going Sunday mornings. If they moved their contemporary service to the AM, we would probably make that our home. Who knows, maybe that'll change. Or maybe we'll change our minds and go evenings.
But for now, we're still looking for our new church family.

Oh, here's another picture of Savannah. She's talking to her Gramma Debbie on the phone. Grammas: just thought you might want a picture of her in your head when you talk to her. When we can actually get her on the phone, that is. She's so picky... one day she wants to talk to everyone she can think of, and then next time we have to practically bribe her to even get her to say hi. Sorry she was so grumpy yesterday, Gramma!

How depressing has the news been lately? With the storms and flooding in the midwest and south. And not being able to eat spinach! And did you hear about this? So sad.

Well, I guess that's about enough rambling for now.
You may have noticed that Ryan returned from his blogging hiatus last night. Any guesses on the mystery movie quote???

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Game Night

We had a fun night last night. We had a little game night and four other couples came over for food, drinks, and games. The men hung out at the bar and the pool table until we were taken away from the 7-layer dip and subjected to a version of the "newlywed game". The ladies picked out five questions and the men tried not to get in too much trouble by answering them too far off. Then the men picked out five questions and showed the women that it wasn't that easy. Everybody did good and I don't think that anyone ended up in the doghouse. Possibly the biggest miracle of the night was the TV was never turned on at all (even though Michigan State was leading Notre Dame), but there was quite a bit of fantasy football talk and some trade proposals. But nobody drank enough to accept any trades last night.

Here are some things that we learned last night:
  • Although it is not recommended, it is possible to keep the TV off when there is football on.
  • 7-layer dip has an additive component in it.
  • Some people use the word "Bu-coo" (meaning big) in everyday language
  • Women have way too many shoes
  • Yard work is considered housework
  • My milkshakes bring all the girls to the couch
  • Heather and I could not talk or talk forever
  • Katie is not a blonde
  • There is still some rivalry between high schools in Jackson, even though they graduated years ago
  • Don is delicate, fancy, and honest while I am just odd (according to Apples to Apples)

Friday, September 22, 2006

Play time

It is Pour Ing outside right now. Rain here is so different from Oregon. From what we've witnessed in the four months we've been here, it is usually either dry or downpours. In Oregon, whether it's raining or just drizzling it's pretty constant and it's usually cloudy and gray all day. There'd be showers on and off, but you hardly notice. Here when it rains, you notice. You notice the downpour on the roof and off the gutters. You notice the stream running down your driveway. You notice the lake forming in the ditches at the end of the driveway. And you notice it in your basement.

We went back to that Kids~n~Stuff place in Albion today. Katie's been wanting to take little Donnie on a "field trip" with the kids, so we decided to head out there. Don had today off work and Ryan had his Friday-half-day so we made it a family outing. Nicole, Porter and the little girl Nicole "preschools" a few days a week also met up with us. Savannah loved having someone her own age to pal around with.
Here's us moms with our little men.
(Porter's 7 months, Donnie's 8 & a half months and Sawyer is 10 & a half.)
Months that is; I know he's bigger than them, but let's not get carried away!

And here are the three boys hanging out.
Check out Sawyer's face in the second picture...

...apparently he's got somethin' to say to Donnie about the way he's eyeing that toy in his hand!

While we were there, we all got on the conversation again about my wishful thinking of opening a kid's play place like that in Jackson. Well, not just like that, because I wouldn't want something as big and elaborate as that place. This place is more like a mini version of a children's museum. I just want a simple indoor place for kids to play and Jackson has nothing of the sort. I also want it to be a good "hang out" spot for parents so they actually want to bring their kids there and have it be a good place for mom's groups or playdates or things like that. Pretty much along the lines of Peanut Butter & Ellie's or Toney Baloney's back home in Portland. Toney Baloney's was so great. A cute little coffee shop/cafe in the same building as a whole big play room for the kids. A few tables and lots of comfy couches; some games and toys and puzzles, a little indoor slide/climber, a train table, a play kitchen, and a few good scones and lattes. Isn't that what every mom wants once in a while? That's what I would love to have here in Jackson. An easy laid back coffee shop where the kids can hang out and play and the moms (and/or dads) can hang out and talk and be OUT OF THE HOUSE. I mean seriously, what are we going to do all winter when it's too cold to be outside? The closest indoor kid thing is 20 minutes away and everything else is an hour. I think it would do so well here. Oh, if I had the money to start that up...

Empathetic or just Pathetic?

So I guess it's just me...
I was talking to Katie today and we got on the subject of tv and we talked about ER last night. She didn't see it, so I was filling her in on some of what happened and I mentioned that I cried. I then went on to say (after knowing she had seen Grey's Anatomy) that part of the reason I was so primed for tears over ER was the fact that I kind of cried during Grey's Anatomy too. She looked at me like I was crazy... "you cried?!?" Well, in my defense, I don't think I actually cried. It was more like just tearing up. And I thought it was pretty legit. Someone's fiance' died for goodness sake, and it was quite touching the way she was trying to deal with it -or was not able to deal with it- and the way her friends were trying to help her through it. Nevermind that I have never seen this show before last night and I know nothing about the characters or any storyline other than what I could piece together in the hour last night. It was still sad!
But yeah, Katie thought I was nuts.

So I guess I'm just a cryer. When did that happen?
I think really it's just the subject matter. Seriously. Losing someone like that scares me to death. I don't know how I would survive losing my husband or one of my babies. And watching people (albeit actors) struggle their way through that really gets to me.
And that would be why I tear up almost every other time I read Kate and Jonathon's blog.
So you can call me crybaby if you want to. I'll prefer to call it empathetic.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Hand me the Kleenex please

Okay, I don't know why I watch ER. I've only watched it maybe a dozen times over the past year or so (that's including random reruns on the cable channels) and I think every single time I end up bawling. Okay, maybe not bawling, but definitely crying. A lot. Did anyone watch tonight? With Abby and Luca and their baby? Am I just totally PMS-ing, or was that all just completely heartbreaking?
I think that show makes me so emotional because no matter what's going on in that ER, it touches me and on some level it makes me so grateful and want to never take for granted my family and our health and well-being. Sheesh, is that cheesy or what? It's just a prime time drama... get a hold of yourself Heather!

So yeah, I've spent the last 45 minutes snivelling (sp? that doesn't look right) over the crises in the ol' ER. Now my head is pounding and my eyes are feeling nice and swollen and I can't go to bed just yet because I can't get my contacts out. They're really difficult to get out if I've been crying or something. I have to wait a bit for my eyes to dry out. Thus my pointless rambling...

I got about half my pictures uploaded and then our wireless connection decided to take a little time off or something, and by the time I was back on, I had lost all momentum. So hopefully I'll get the rest of that finished this weekend. Sorry Mom!

Let's see... what other random thoughts can I come up with?
~We have the furnace on for the first time tonight. Oooh, it was chilly today. Nice and sunny, but chilly!
~Tomorrow's Friday, yay!!!
~For those that have asked, No I haven't been getting up early still, but that's because Ryan's been getting up and leaving later than usual. He's just been leaving about 7 o'clock and that's when the kids get up anyway. We'll see what happens tomorrow.

I'm gonna sign off and go check on the kids and get ready for bed.

The Binky Box and other stuff...

Sawyer has a Binky Box. We made up a Binky Box because we are forever losing this kid's binkies. Which amazes me because he really only uses them when he's in his bed or sometimes in the car. So how do they end up lost all over the house? Well one contributing factor is the fact that he likes to throw them. Sometimes, before I hear Sawyer talking or making anyother noises in his crib when he wakes in the morning, I know he's up because I hear the distinct sound of the plastic clatter of a binky hitting the hardwood floor in his bedroom. Or hitting the wall and then the floor. Or sliding down between the crib and the wall (that's one of his favorites!). His throwing habit is also one of the reasons we have such a collection of them; we need a supply on hand for if he wakes in the middle of the night and we can't find the bink he had without turning on the lights and combing the entire room! And when we get down to one or two left in the box, it's time for a binkie hunt. Saywer's good at hunting them down. Trouble is, he's also very good at carrying them from room to room and hiding them.
Anyway, back to the Binky Box. Like I said, we started keeping them in this box so we knew where to find one in the dark. Well, one of Sawyer's new fascinations is putting things into other things. You know; nesting cups, Savannah's play food into play bowls, toys into boxes (yes, he loves to help clean up now that he's figured this out. And Savannah is amazed..."mom, Sawyer's putting the toys away!!"). So I've been trying to start the habit of having Sawyer put his binky in his Binky Box when he gets up in the morning or after naps. He loves it! Maybe it's my imagination, but I think he's actually holding onto it until we come in just so he can put it in the box! I come in to get him out of bed and he's holding it tight. We usually go straight from the crib to the changing table for a diaper change and that's where the Binky Box is. He gets all smiley and laughing in the few steps over there and by the time we're there, he's already holding out the binky, reaching for the box.
Now the funnier part is, whenever he's laying on the changing table, he wants to put binkies in the box. He'll reach over and grab one out of the box, and then reach over and grab the box. But keep in mind, he's laying down. So if there are more binkies in the box, which there usually are, they fall out. So he tries to put his original one into the box, and it of course just slides right back out. So he tries another one. And another one. And another one. And you get the picture.
He gets quite frustrated with this silly box and doesn't understand why it won't cooperate with him. Till I'm done with his diaper and I sit him up and then he can successfully put all the binkies back where they belong! Then he's quite proud of himself. Funny little man!!

Here are a couple more of my favorite pictures from the camping weekend. I just love this one of Saywer (thanks Nicole!). Ryan says we should try and get him into modeling and make a little extra money. I laugh. As we speak, he's got a mammoth bruise (one of the ones that starts out not looking too bad and with each passing day seems to grow and grow all the while changing into lovlier and lovlier shades of blues, purples and greens) in a nice thick line from his cheekbone down below his jaw. Fireplace stone is hard, by the way.
He always manages to bang up his head and face. The rest of his body is perfect (if you overlook the red scaley eczema break-outs). Do you think anyone's in need of a chunky leg-roll model?

Here's one I got of Savannah on a little walk we took. An actual looking at the camera smiling picture... that's rare for her!!

and Savannah was so sweet wanting to help Sawyer walk on our walk. She's so proud of him!!

Okay, that's it for now. I promise I'm uploading all the pictures to Shutterfly tonight. Ryan's got soccer, so I'll get the kids to bed and head right for the computer and work on that while I watch the new shows on tonight. We watched this new one last week... it was pretty good. And tonight this is finally back on!! And I would love to get back into watching this, but it's just so late. I know I'm usually up anyway, but commiting myself to a show on that late is intimidating. I used to love that show, and then with pregnancies and new babies, I couldn't cut the late hours and I gave it up. But I think it's time to jump back in. Have any of you seen (you're right Nicole, now it's hard to ever make that word sound right!!) any of the new shows on this season? Which one's, old or new, do you think are worth watching? We don't have many regulars besides Lost and 24. Unfortunately Lost doesn't start for almost another month, and 24... well, January just seems so far away...

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Mmmmm... can you smell that?

So in keeping with the autumn mood, guess what I have baking in the kitchen right now? Yummy apple crisp. The perfect fall treat. One of my all time favorites; there's nothing better than the smell of brown suger, cinnamon and apples!
And the reason I have a dessert baking away at 10:30 in the morning is because we're having a guest over for dinner tonight. Ryan's former boss, John Dolan, is here in Ann Arbor speaking for a few days at Pfizer. John Dolan is one of the biggest names in that field; everyone in most every job in that industry knows of him and would love to get the chance to work with him. Ryan swears the only reason he got this job with Pfizer was because John was his number one reference and he worked so closely with him.
Anyway, we were planning on going out to dinner with him at some point while he was here but then a group of Ann Arbor Pfizer people planned a dinner for John and Ryan was invited to that, so that's what Ryan did last night. And then he called me on his way home last night and asked me if I would mind having John come over for dinner tonight.
Luckily I had worked my but off all day cleaning up our disaster area of a house. I finished folding the last of six loads of laundry, got all the camping gear cleaned up, organized and packed away, got two loads of dishes through the dishwasher, and attacked both the kids bedrooms (even going through closets to take out summer and too small stuff) and the toy room.
I'm not normally real picky about how my house looks for visitors. I keep it pretty clean, it just tends to get quite cluttered very quickly. So if you drop by my house you will usually see a few dishes in the sink, maybe a few articles of clothing laying around (my kids tend to shed), and quite a few more toys scattered all over the place. That's just how we live. It had just gotten really bad the last week or so with my "surgery" and camping and everything. So needless to say, I was quite relieved when Ryan called to okay inviting John over and I could look around my spotless house (okay, probably shouldn't go so far as to say spotless...) and say "sure" without having to jump up and start cleaning up like a madwoman. However, knowing I would have Porter here this morning, I did have to run out to the grocery store when Ryan got home at 10pm to whip up a decent meal for this evening. Here's what's on the menu... Baked Salmon w/ Tomatoes , roasted red potatoes, roasted asparagus, maybe a rice of some sort, and for dessert... Apple Crisp!!!

I am surprisingly a little nervous about having John over though. This isn't like just having our friends over for dinner. This is like a real Grown-up! I know it's silly, but I'm feeling a little self conscience about certain aspects of this little place we call home. Like how we still have our tv in our living room sitting on a clothes hamper. Or that I have prints without frames as well as frames without pictures sitting all over the place, like that's how I decorate. Or that we have two tables in our dining room at the moment, one still covered in boxes that never got unpacked. Or that Ryan never got the mower fixed and the lawn hasn't really been nicely mowed in almost a month. I know I'm being silly... John is just about the nicest guy you'll ever meet. I'm sure he could care less about any of that.
It'll be so nice when I actually feel completely moved in and done. How much longer will it take?

Gotta go retrieve my bubbling dessert from the oven!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

That's All Folks

I think this is really it. It's hard to believe the summer is truly over and the long sunny days are gone. We had such a gorgeous weekend! Now it's back to clouds and rain. I've heard from many Michiganders that September, and even into October, is usually still pretty nice and warm... indian summerlike. Doesn't look anything like that around here.
Right now it's 58 degrees outside (that's about the high for today) with clouds and a crisp chilly wind. Brrr! The sun was actually out for a bit this morning, and it was a beautiful drive to Savannah's school. We take some long country back roads to her school all lined with trees and forest. The trees are changing already and the colors were brilliant with the bright blue sky and the sparkling sunshine. I love the changing seasons and I do like the cozy, cooler weather, but it made me a little sad that another summer's gone. No more sprinkler, no more fireflies, no more backyard barbeques, no more eating watermelon and popscicles with Savannah outside. Ryan and I were talking about this the other day, asking each other, "do you think that's it?". We figured one sure way of getting a few more warmer temperatures is to put away our air conditioner and our fans for storage. I'm still holding out for another day or two of summer weather around here. Doesn't hurt to hope, does it?
Happy Fall!

Two Steps!!

That's what Sawyer did last night! He finally moved those stubborn little feet. He's been standing well on his own for what seems like a month now, and he will bend over, clap his hands, shake toys, throw fits, and do a variety of other things standing there perfectly fine, never losing his balance. He can even stand up all by himself from being on the floor in the middle of the room, not holding onto anything to help him up. But when we've tried to get him to take a step or two on his own, he wouldn't budge. He'll cruise along the furniture barely hanging on, and he loves to walk if you're holding his hands... even just holding one hand he's pretty steady. But despite all that steadiness, if you let go of him, he just stands there. He'll stand there and reach and reach and stretch and lean for you or your hand. And he won't move his feet until he has a hold of your hand. The past week or so, we've spent a little time each day trying to get him to go between Ryan and I. It's pretty funny. Anyway, last night he finally did it! Two little steps. And then guess what? He was so proud of himself and he was laughing so hard, he fell down. That kid cracks me up. He finds himself so amusing! Apparently he's re-learned how to clap. He started clapping his hands months ago, but just now he's seemed to have figured out how to do it "right" and actually make a clapping sound. So now he stands around all day laughing and clapping for himself. And he really thinks that's hilarious! Last night he was having his usual after-bath-meltdown with Ryan, not wanting to get his lotions and pajamas on, and I walked into his bedroom, saw him laying on the floor crying and struggling with Ryan, and I said "Yay Sawyer!!!" and clapped my hands. He stopped crying immediately and grinned his big toothy grin and clapped his hands. Crazy kid!!

So I've tentatively decided to start getting up earlier in the morning. For the past week or so, I've been waking up when Ryan gets up for work and not falling back to sleep. So instead of just laying in my cozy bed and thinking of all the stuff I should be doing, I'm going to try getting up when he leaves at 6am. We'll see how that goes. Today was kind of a practice. Meaning, I didn't really do anything, but at least I made it out of bed. And onto the couch with a blanket and the laptop. Something tells me that doesn't count as being productive. Well, I'll ease into it.
You know how you always hear about moms who get up like 45 minutes before their kids do, just to have some time to themselves, or get a head start on the day. I'm not talking about moms who have to get up early and get ready for work. I'm talking about moms who work later, or from home, or stay home and say that getting up early makes all the difference. Do you know anyone that actually does that? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think I know anyone who does that. I think pretty much everyone I know tries to get every last minute of sleep they can. If they're up before the sun, it's because their baby or toddler is awake and ready for the day... not because they choose to be.
So maybe I'm crazy, but I'm gonna see how it goes. I just know I'm not motivated to do much in the evenings. I'd rather just hang out with Ryan watching a little tv or playing a game or reading, than doing dishes or cleaning the bathroom or doing some scrapbooking or crafts or a million other things I need to get done. I'm just lazy in the evenings. I'm actually pretty lazy most of the time, but we won't get into that...

Monday, September 18, 2006

Camping Highlights

So we made it through the weekend! But boy is my house suffering today!! After more than a week of house guests, me spending half that time laying around on pain killers, a rush of a day of packing for a camping trip, three days in the great outdoors, and then getting home and dumping everything just inside the back door last night, it's safe to say this place is a wreck! We at least emptied the car last night, but only really unpacked the cooler and anything we needed to get the kids to bed last night. I did manage to gather most of the laundry together and so I really should get on that. We still have piles of stuff everywhere and our tubs of camping "kitchen" stuff and food are sitting in the kitchen. I told Savannah she could just go digging in there for a snack this morning. Her first choice was of course marshmallows, but after that request was denied, you know what she picked? A hot dog bun. She dug past the applesauce, the crackers, the bagels, the fig newtons, even the pudding snacks, and wanted a plain hot dog bun. Okay...

Well, since I should really be cleaning and unpacking instead of blogging, I should stop wasting even more time babbling like I do and just get to the trip.
We had a great time! We have our first successful Michigan camping trip under our belts. The weather was awesome... sunny and 80. I didn't know it was going to be so nice. It had been pouring and gloomy for almost two weeks before that, and the weather report said sun, but I was still doubtful. We could have spent both days down in the sun and sand at the lake if I would have been better prepared for more summer weather! Van Buren was great, we had nice big campsites. They were great, except for that fact that we were right next to a mini-playground with swings and that was definitely the gathering spot for every kid in the campground between the ages of 4 and 14 between the hours of 7am and 10pm, the most popular hang out time being from after dinner until after 9 at night. Which was great for putting our babies to bed in our tents, let me tell you! (if you can't hear the sarcasm in my voice, believe me... it's there!) Those kids were so loud and obnoxious, screaming and yelling, climbing trees right over our tents and even running through our campsite. This campground was packed with kids! At least Savannah made lots of friends for the weekend. I have honestly never seen so many families with kids camping, and we have been to many very family friendly campgrounds. Needless to say, we were happy to have the 10pm quiet time roll around. We had a couple of great campfires, played some games, and had our fill of s'mores. The kids did great. Savannah loves camping! When we took the car into town to go up to South Haven, and when we stopped at a Wal-Mart for a couple of forgotten items, she would ask us every half-hour or so, "are we still camping?". Sawyer did pretty good for his first time as a camper. He was a little cranky and he didn't sleep all that well the first night (or a couple of nights before that at home, which didn't help), but that was mostly because he had some pretty good flare-ups with his eczema and so I think he was kind of irritable from that. But he had fun being outside. He loves to get in the dirt!

These were the only two ways to keep the little monster contained...
We mostly used The Supergate and then we gave Porter's Bumbo seat a try.

We had brought his walker for him to eat in and for when we wanted to keep him clean(er), but he wasn't too happy being cooped up in that. He wanted to be down on the ground with his toys in the dirt.

And when we hit the beach, and let him down in the sand, he was in heaven!! He would just crawl around plowing his hands through the sand like a bulldozer, laughing the whole while. He loved it when I would bury his feet and he could dig and wiggle them out. Pretty cute! Savannah of course loved the water, she could stay out there jumping the waves all day.

She wrote her name in the sand...

And here are a couple more cute shots of the kids...

Well, I have a ton more pictures. I filled up our camera's memory card for the first time on one single trip. I haven't gone through and edited or cropped any yet, but I'll get around to that one of these next evenings and I'll get them all up on Shutterfly so you can check them out and order prints if you want any. Also, Nicole got some great shots (she is, after all the photographer... I'm almost embarrassed to send you over to look at her pics compared to mine) and they're on her page today so you can check those out if your interested. She's giving me a disk with all hers on there (more of our family and the kids than she posted on her blog) so I will add those to the Shutterfly album too and you can see all of them.

I must get some work done around here.
Hope you all had a great weekend!

Happy belated to both Heidi and Holly!! We were thinking of you both and missing you aroung the campfire!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Sawyer's 2nd Haircut

And Ryan is not doing that again for a long time.
We went from this head of hair....
To this head of hardly any....

I told Ryan using the clippers on all of it was too short -that I wanted to cut the top with scissors. But no... he was sure he knew what he was doing. And he did fine. But he failed to forsee that hair cut that length looks alot different on an adult's full head of than on a head of thin baby hair. I almost cried.

Okay, so he's still pretty stinkin' cute.
But it's so short!!

And here are the remains...

In other news...
I'm going in to the oral surgeon tomorrow morning at 9:45. That'll be fun.
I'm hoping it won't be so bad. I've talked to a few other people who went to this oral surgeon and they said he's great and it was much better than they thought it would be. And since I'm only having two wisdom teeth taken out, and since one of they're not impacted, I'm thinking positively.
Ryan's taking the day off to take care of me, and then Jenn flies out tomorrow evening. It's been so nice to have her here with us. Savannah will miss her terribly though.
Then on Friday, we are supposed to go camping (real camping) with the Barczaks. We have plans to head over to Van Buren State Park on Lake Michigan, for two nights of camping. I say supposed to go with a big SUPPOSE because although I fully intend to go along if at all possible, who knows how I'll be feeling by the time we're supposed to shove off on Friday. I have faith I'll be up to it, but Ryan's not so sure. He thinks I'm crazy. We'll see.
So have a great weekend everyone, and we'll let you know how ours turns out :)

Back to Yesterday...

We spent the afternoon at the Children's Museum in Grand Rapids. We found all the usual children's museum fun stuff to do...

lot's of bubble and water tables to play in, and of course, the giant bubble you can pull up around yourself.

And some funny mirrors...

We went for a fishing excursion....

(and had a hard time getting Sawyer to give up that fishing pole. He would have stayed there all day!!)

And the big highlight:
The Clifford Exibit.
Savannah was in love!
The whole second floor was Clifford oriented space with just about the whole Birdwell Island nieghborhood; the library, the post office, the beach, Emily Elizabeth's house, and all the characters from the books and tv show.

Finally, something that makes Sawyer look little!

Savannah got to drive the Birdwell Island Ferry

Sawyer dressed up like Clifford's friend T-bone

...and loved himself!

In Chloe's doghouse

Hangin' out with Clifford and Emily Elizabeth

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

School Girl

I was on my way to bed, when I realized I should at least post a picture of Savannah's first day of preschool. I know the Grammas were waiting for it.
She was so excited to go! She was still a little unsure of being able to go to school before she's five (she knows you can't go to kindergarten till you're five and she thinks that's what she has to wait for), and then when she realized I wasn't going to stay with her she was a little hesitant, but she went right in just fine.
Sawyer and I drove home and he seemed a little confused as to where Savannah went. For now his am nap corresponds nicely with school, so he spent almost the whole time she was gone napping. I spent the whole two hours folding laundry and watching The Today Show and then Regis and Kelly. Do you know how long it's been since I've watched any morning television besides Blue's Clues or Dora? Ahhh... adult morning shows...
Savannah's teacher, Miss Kristy, said she did great and she talked alot with the other kids and made herself right at home. She sang a new song all afternoon, so I guess she had fun. I asked her what her favorite part of school was and she said "we had graham crackers for snack!!".
We did some other fun stuff today too I'll write about later, but I am going to bed now. It takes too long to upload photos and I've been trying, to no avail, to get to bed early all week. So I'm off. Here are a couple more shots from this morning.

"Mo-om... can you stop taking pictures so we can go now?"

And this one... I had to take a pic while Sawyer was eating his breakfast. Maybe it was the whole 'Savannah off to Preschool' thing, but he looked so grown up today. This just does not look like a 10-month-old to me. Couldn't he pass for like, almost 2 years??? click on any pics to see larger