Saturday, July 07, 2007


Since we've moved and we obviously are not
The Morrisons in Michigan any longer, which our web address suggests, I figured it was time for a new place for me to ramble.

So after you've commented on my Thoughts on Thursday and met our newest little friend, wander on over and check out our new blog page:
Our Everyday Life at

Things over there, like our new house, are still a bit messy and not completely unpacked yet, so keep that in mind and bear with me as I get used to the new page.

Friday, July 06, 2007

so very nice to meet you

Yuri Marie MalonePresenting the Malones and their brand new baby girl...

Doesn't Savannah look so OLD holding Yuri in this picture?!!!

Sawyer was in love... I'm serious, he was all over her! We had to stand up to hold her just so Sawyer couldn't reach her and wouldn't maul her. He was really taken with that tiny little bundle!

Congrats you guys!! Enjoy your precious little girl. We are so excited to get to know her!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Another Thursday

Tonight Sawyer went to sleep in his new big bed for the first time! It took him quite a while to fall asleep... I don't think he drifted off until about 9 o'clock (he was in bed before 7:30), but he stayed in bed the whole time all by himself, and now that he's asleep in there, he is so flippin' cute! I want so badly to take a picture of him but I don't dare wake him up. I wish you could see him though. My big little baby all curled up in the corner of a real live twin sized bed! Moments like this just make me want to freeze time for a bit.
Anyway, we'll see how the whole night goes and what ungodly hour he pops out of bed at! Keep your fingers crossed for us!

So coincidentally, Sawyer's milestone bedtime tonight leads me into my Thoughts on Thursday post for this week. (By the way, is no one else joining in on our Thursday conversation starters??? Come on! There's gotta be something you want to open a conversation about or something you want to know other's opinions on that you could take a few minutes to blog about?! Well, at the very least make sure you comment on my thoughts... and Nic has her own thoughts too, so go over there and check it out.)

My topic of choice this week is Bedtime.
Do (did) your kids have bedtimes? Is it early or late or whenever they fall asleep? And am I brave enough to take it a step further... what about the family bed vs. kids in their own beds?

I just have to say I don't understand the no bedtime thing. I'm just going to be blunt and ask do parents really think that it's okay for a small child to still be awake at 10 and 11 p.m.?? Do they really think there is nothing wrong with that?
Disclaimer: When I talk about early childhood and parenting habits, I admit I am no expert and probably very far from it... but having worked in early childhood education for almost 10 years, nannied numerous infants/toddlers, and now having two kids of my own... I am fairly comfortable saying I've seen a thing or two and I know I've had enough varying experiences with all different situations to give at least a half-way educated opinion. HAHA!

**Added Disclaimer: It is late and I am very sleep deprived myself and even as I'm typing I have a million other things running through my head. I'm realizing this is why I haven't been blogging regularly... I have too much all jumbled around in my head to focus on actually writing anything that actually sticks to a point or makes any sense!

Most of the kids I've been involved with have had "normal" bedtimes. I'm categorizing "normal" as anytime between 6:30 and 8:30 considering children 6 months to about 8 years old. The majority of them (and can I say generally the happiest and better behaved children as well) were in bed by 8. But then I would have a two or three year old in my class now and then who, for example, didn't go to bed until usually close to midnight (and then be in my classroom before 7am the next morning, poor thing). This little girl was miserable. She was so obviously overtired and really honestly struggled through her day. I was actually pretty close with the mother and had a few conversations with her about K's bedtime. They always said, "oh, she is just such a night owl... she loves to stay up late, we just can't get her to bed any earlier, she likes to stay up late and sleep in". Yeah, well first of all, she's obviously not sleeping in when you have to be at work by 7am. She's taking four hour naps everyday because she's exhausted. She stays up late because she CAN, and you can't get her to bed because you don't really try.
I babysat little K for 10 days with her older brother and sister while their parents were out of town one summer. K was in bed and asleep every night with me by 9pm. By the time her parents got home, it was closer to 8. And she was noticeably happier and healthier... it was like a completely different child! She was not only sleeping more, but getting much better sleep when she was sleeping. K's mom had often complained about K still waking up and needing to be layed down with to go back to sleep numerous times a day. But after the first few nights of an earlier bedtime with me, K was sleeping soundly all the way till morning. I was kind of bummed as shortly after mom and dad returned home, K was back to her "night owl" ways. And those ways included her crankiness, her touchiness, her short attention span, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

I know part of their "excuse" for keeping her up late was the fact that they both worked full time. I know that tends to be a common denominator with some kids that don't really have bedtimes... the parents don't get to see them all day and they try to squeeze in all that together time at night. Nobody wants to only see their children for just basically 2 hours a day (if you're getting home at 6 and they're going to bed at 8). It feels like you're cheated out of spending time with your kids. But I just have to say, if you're keeping them up for those reasons, you're actually cheating them. It is amazing the number of kids who are sleep deprived in our culture. Did you know that over 20% of kids entering elementary school have serious sleep problems that aren't perceived by either the child or their parents? They are chronically sleep deprived. Some doctors say that almost half of the diagnosed ADHD patients would not need any special medication or treatments if they as their doctors could regulate their sleeping habits.

Honestly, kids need way more sleep than I think most of us are even aware of. And I think most of us are unaware of the difference it makes. Sleep- good quality sleep- is such a foundation for a child's overall health and demeanor it is amazing.
Recently I've met a few more moms with way more flexible (or non-existent) bedtimes than I was previously used to. At times, after putting my own kids to bed for the night, it is almost painful to hang out with these families and watch their toddler grow more and more tired, whining around on the floor at almost 11 o'clock at night rubbing his red and bleary eyes. These different kids on different occasions, while they were very well behaved and content to hang out with the adults, were just so obviously tired to everyone in the room except for the parents. More than one of us would make a comment, 'oh he looks like he's getting tired' or 'look at those tired eyes', which would be either ignored or answered with 'oh, I don't really know why he's being so clingy, he isn't usually ready for bed yet.'
It's kind of hard to stand by and watch that... I just wanted to say "put your kid to bed already, before he falls asleep in the middle of the floor!" Maybe it's just that I made a career of observing kids and my job was to meet their needs...
It just doesn't make sense to me. I'm just amazed at how many more and more families I meet who's kids go to bed at the same time the adults do.

And seriously, all the children's health and happiness aspects aside, what about grown-up time? I would go crazy if my kids and I went to bed at the same time each night. I know I'm with my kids all day, but Ryan's not and he agrees with me... we are usually counting down to the kid's bedtime. To have that close and cuddly routine of our goodnights, and then we can have some adult time to ourselves. And with each other. I just don't think our marriage, or our sanity, would be half as intact as it is if the kids were up until 10 with us each night. You know what I mean?

Alright. This post is completely all over the place and I feel like I'm talking in circles. It's very late and I could go on forever with this topic. Can you tell I value my kids sleep?!!

Anyway, so instead of preaching anymore (haha!) and since I'm too lazy to research anything online right now... I'm just going to end this and say here's my absolute favorite book about all of this. If you are a parent and you haven't read it, you should. I haven't the slightest idea where my book is right now in this sea of boxes we're living in, but if I did you can bet I'd be quoting from it right and left. But I don't, so I won't. But I love that it's not a "how to" book with in your face theories on how to get your child to sleep. It mostly focuses on why they need the sleep they need and the affect their sleep habits have on almost every aspect of their lives. Good stuff to know.

Wow, I almost even forgot to tell you the name of the book. That's how tired I am. I should not be writing right now.
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child
That's it.
I'm not even going to touch on co-sleeping or kids being able to put themselves to sleep. Those are whole other subjects in and of themselves. I'll let someone else tackle those.
So back to my original question...
What is bedtime in your house and how do you feel about it?

our Fourth

We had a great day yesterday! One of the best Fourth of July's ever in my book. Of course, I've never done much to celebrate Independence Day... I'm not a huge fan of fireworks and most years lately it's just been easier to put the kids to bed like normal and sit around at home. But this year we decided to have some fun.
First the Swinigans came over in the morning to hang out and for an early lunch and we all went over for some play in the pool. We all had fun; Savannah was so excited all morning about having Norah come and play and swim with her!
Here are just a couple of shots of our day at the pool. I was too busy chasing Sawyer around to take as many pictures as I wanted to...

Here's little Lucy flying high with her daddy!

The Malones (plus Michael's little brother Brett) had come to join us at the pool as well. Finally at after 2 o'clock, the Swinigans headed home and I came back to our house to put Sawyer down for a nap. Ryan brought Savannah back at almost 3 so she could lay down for awhile, and then he went back to bake in the sun and soak in the water with the others for another hour or so. When everyone was thouroughly all pooled out, we just hung at our house and chatted for a bit. It was our last visit with the Malones as expectant parents! They are in the hospital as I type, waiting to meet (and possibly have already met) their little one!! Erin's water was broken just before noon today, so we're waiting to hear word anytime!! So, so exciting!

After the kids woke from their late naps (at 5 o'clock!) we said goodbye to the Malones and packed up to head out to the Fourth of July Festival here in O'Fallon. We had such a fun time! Coming from Portland, where yes they have great festivals and fairs but they cost an arm and a leg, it was so nice to have a great local fair with so much stuff to do FOR FREE! Parking was free, getting into the festival itself was free, and sure the rides and food cost $$, but they had a whole big kids area with a ton of free stuff for the kids to do. Facepainting, crafts, puppet shows, petting zoos, animal acts, magic shows, inflatables, a playground... I could go on and on. We rode a few rides, ate a few hot dogs, and hung out until the fireworks. I was quite impressed. I knew that St. Louis offered more free, major visitor attractions (museums, the zoo, the science center and tons more) than anyplace out of the nation's capital, but I didn't know that would run over into the suburbs out here! We had a blast and the kids were great. Sure it was a (extremely) late night for everyone, but it was fun!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

one week

Apparently I'm only able to blog every other day now. I don't know why... we didn't even do that much yesterday that I was terribly busy.

Or today. Well, we finally got Savannah's room painted tonight, but other than that pretty much nothing else house-wise accomplished today.
I did go shopping this morning.
I needed to go to Walmart and Ryan suggested I go to Old Navy (that just sounds so unnatural) since I've been Old Navy deprived for the past year. We now live 1.6 miles from one!!
Anyway, I went out this morning... here was the conversation before I left:
Me: okay, I'm on my way out, call me if you think of anything else we need.
Ryan: which one of the kids are you taking? both?
Me: (long pause and confused look)
Ryan: Neither?
Me: I'd like neither.... but if you really want me to take one...
Ryan: It'd be a lot easier if you took one.
Me: It'd be a lot easier if you took one to work with you every day too.

I left alone :)
Yeah, so what happens when Ryan lets me (so graciously) shop by myself? Well, let's see...
I had planned on going to Walmart (not really shopping, just to pick up one thing) and to Old Navy. I left the house at about 9am. I got home at 1 o'clock and had been to Kohl's, Target, Walmart, LinensNThings and Old Navy. I'm sorry, but Old Navy just wasn't going to cut it. I'm way more interested in buying house stuff right now than clothes for me. But the opportunities to shop on my own without bickering kids to entertain through the store are so rare, of course I had to try a few things on... or maybe a few more than a few. I got a pair of white pants, a skort, and a few shirts. Not too bad. I also got these and these and this. Not bad at all for four hours in the stores. I could have done a lot more damage. I did manage to fill my head with a list a mile long of house things I want. Someday.

After the kids woke up from nap, we went over to the pool. Yes, we finally made it over there. The kids and Ryan have been twice, and this was my first time actually getting in. It was the perfect day for it. Nice and hot and just tolerable if you were nice and wet. Sawyer had a blast in the wading pool... he walked around like he owned the place. And then Savannah taught him how to jump in and he must have jumped at least 827 times. His feet barely hit the ground when he was scrambling to get out and jump in again! And of course he had to wear Daddy's goggles!!
Here are just three of his 827 jumps.

And when Sawyer got bored of the pool, he spent the rest of the time right here...

Seriously, he hung out here for like 20 minutes watching people come and get snacks, apparently trying to figure out this machine!

And here are just a couple cute shots I should share from last week... Ryan and I were putting together Sawyer's bed and of course as soon as Sawyer sees tools, he has to join in. And SJ cannot be left out. So here they are "helping" finish the beds.

I'm sure I'll have more pics tomorrow... we're having some friends over for lunch and then hitting the pool as long as the weather holds out... it's supposed to thunderstorm tomorrow. Of course. Not sure what we're doing for "The Forth" yet, but we have plenty to choose from... lots going on in our community. Again, if it's not storming!
Happy Forth of July everyone!!

Sunday, July 01, 2007

day of rest

I thought about posting yesterday... it would have been titled What A Difference A Day Makes. We seriously got so much done yesterday and the night before, I couldn't believe it. Sawyer's room is completely done; painted, decorated, (well, we're waiting on the shades for the windows to come in), unpacked and situated, and we even got his bed put together. He hasn't slept in it yet because we took the old blinds down and we don't have the new ones yet and he really likes it dark, so he's been camping out in the guest room for now.
We made a huge dent in other boxes around the house... our bedroom and the upstairs landing were pretty overrun with boxes to unpack as well as empty boxes and packing paper, and now you can actually see how much room we have!! I think once we get completely unpacked and organized around here, we're going to be shocked at how much room we really have. We're getting so used to living surrounded by all this moving mess, it'll be strange to have empty space!

Today we did absolutely nothing though. I'm declaring it our Day of Rest. It is Sunday, after all. We went to the church down the street (it is literally at the end of our street) this morning, and then came home and had a great lunch of Biscuits and Gravy. Yum!! Then it was naptime (everyone napped but me... I spent an hour or so browsing online for decorating ideas/shopping), and after that we went to meet some new friends for dinner. Well, they're old friends for Ryan; it's a couple he went to school with at Greenville. Turns out they live just a couple of miles from us, and they have two girls who are three and one. Ryan and Kevin had been in touch since we moved and they invited us over for dinner this evening. Kevin's wife's name is Heather also. She stays home with the girls, and she has already given me a lot of good leads on local pediatricians, preschools, parks and such. It was a nice evening of visiting, a really yummy dinner, and the kids had a lot of fun. I'm sure we'll see more of them in the future!

Now tonight, we got the kids bathed and in bed and we're both just sitting here vegged out on the laptops. I figure the day's pretty much shot anyway, why ruin it by getting any work done now? LOL! I think we're going to watch a movie.

So instead of posting much house stuff, or pictures of our progress, I'm just going to leave you with the product of my blog surfing this evening... a fun way to find out what your choice of images says about your personality.

I'm an Easy Rider, what are you?