Wednesday, June 27, 2012

a week....

For as boring as life feels sometimes, it's generally quite the opposite.  Four weeks ago, as Memorial Day hit, I made a list of summer activities to do with the boys.  You know, the typical list of places to go, people to see, that sort of thing.

Well, Elliott starts kindergarten in 4 weeks.  Our list?  I lost it.  I cannot say that we are really hitting all (or any for that matter) the things I'd planned to do but we sure are busy and seem to be having a great time.

Watching Diego

Wyatt is officially in a big boy bed and after almost a week, still hasn't wiped the smile off his face. He is IN LOVE with his bed, is sleeping like a champ, won't get out by himself in the morning, and is doing better than we'd ever have imagined. The crib is down for a few short weeks to be sanded and repainted (too many bite marks) and then the big boys will be sharing a room while the new baby gets his own.

They claim they've never been to toys r us. Even though we were at one on Monday.

We've spend a lot of time at Toys R Us lately, perusing the merchandise and picking up a few things for summer like a sandbox and lots of bubbles. You'd think the boys were at Disneyland, not a toy store but it works.

Waiting for swimming with the fish and the scardy cat.

We wrapped up our first session of swimming lessons today. Elliott is an absolute fish and almost passed off two levels in a mere 8 lessons. Wyatt, not so much. The kid is not a fan of putting his face in the water and so we'll try swimming lessons again next year. Elliott had such a great time that I'm signing him up again and we'll be ready for round two next week. Now, we just need to get ourselves some time in Great Grandpa's pool.

Last night, the left gander batted left handed. Made his dad proud.

T-ball is back in full swing two nights a week, two hours a night. Both boys are playing, dad is coaching both teams, and when Wyatt isn't crying because he didn't field the ball first or hit the ball far enough off the tee, he's really having fun. Elliott is doing so well his dad finally convinced him to bat left handed and he got some great hits. His dad may have even shed a tear at the first hit as a lefty.

And, perhaps most important, our cousin Isaac from Arizona has been here visiting for the week and the three boys have had some great cousin time.

Gangsters. And cousins.

Polar bear @hoglezoo is awesome.

The zoo

And, what week would be complete with out some time with our other cousins, Molly-wog and Jackity Jack. Oh, we love playing with these guys too.

Cousin movie time.

Holding the baby all by himself. He's going to be such a good big, big brother.

So I guess, it seems like we're pretty busy after all...

Sunday, June 24, 2012

What's in a name?

Feeling as big and fat (but not quite as heavy…yet) as I do at 38 weeks knocked up right now at 28. Ug!

Our family of four is about 9-10 weeks away from becoming a family of five.  Ten weeks feels like an eternity when I think about days and hours and minutes but, it doesn't feel fast enough when I feel swollen ankles and severe heat exhaustion and know that I'm starting to waddle a bit.  I told my husband in one of my almost midnight complaint sessions a few weeks ago that this baby process is so slow.  I mean, we have smart phones and remote controls and live in a world where everything is immediate and we can stream movies on our computers.  Jokingly I told him that someone needs to figure out how to speed up this whole baby thing.  Because, 38-40 weeks is an insanely long time to wait for something.

And, I might start sleeping on the tile floor in my laundry room.  It's the coolest room, temperature wise, in the whole house.

How was that for some randomness?

Like I said, we've only got about 10 weeks and the family expands.  That expansion, "little twitchy" as I refer to him is going to need a name.

A name that as of right now, doesn't exist.

I know so many people who name their kid before he's born.  I'm cool with that.  Part of me wishes it could come that easily...that my husband and I could come to an agreement on something and have a few months or weeks to test it out to make sure it works.  We don't however function that way.  Names have been batted around our home and our extended families for months.  Everything I like, he despises.  Everything he likes, I think it comes from so far in left field that he's just trying to get my goat.

With the other two boys, we had a few "rules" if you will.  Rules that still exist for little twitchy.
1.  A first name that is easy to spell and pronounce.
2.  A first name that isn't immediately nick-nameable into a thousand different names.  Nick names are okay and great (for the first 6 months of his life, Ross called Elliott, Fred.  And the Chick, well, he's going to be Chickie until he's an old man, even though we don't really use it anymore.) but a little annoying, too.
3.  A first name that is unique enough that there won't be three of him in a school class but not so strange that people look at us like we are weirdos.
4.  A first name that is the name he goes by, not a middle name (We already screwed this up with Wyatt and don't need to do it again.  Ross and I are both middle namers and it's a pain in the butt a lot of the time.)
5.  A name that really feels like it fits the boy who will be stuck with it the rest of his life.
6.  A name that transitions well - good for a baby, a boy, and a man.
7.  A name that someone in any of our immediate and extended family (still living) doesn't already have.  (I love the name Luke, but we have two.  There are plenty of Ed's.  We have three cousin's named Max.)

It's not too complicated, right?  Right?  The rules I mean...they aren't too crazy.

For Elliott, we had a middle name chosen well in advance and a list of four or five first names that we liked and when it came right down to it, I picked Elliott. For Wyatt, we had a middle name (that became a first name) and a list of four names that we liked and Ross chose Wyatt.  Not until much later when my mom realized that both boys names ended in "tt" did we ever notice that we'd already done the pattern thing.


Does that make us like the Duggars?

Now, "little twitchy" doesn't stand a chance.  

We could go with another "tt" like Garrett or Bennett or Emmitt, but that puts us over the top of cliche hill.  

We could go with some alliteration like Henry or Hayden or Hal.  

We could go with our roots and use Sven or Anders or Olaf.  

We could go trendy and use Aiden or Jacob or Noah.  

We could go off the beaten path with Grady or Clem or Ollie.  

We could go super traditional with Mike or David or Joel.

We could go presidential with Truman or Davis or Jefferson.

We could go super different like Stone or Prince or Blanket.

We could go with a hyphenated name like Jean-Paul or Jean-Luc or Walker-Texas Ranger.

We could go with a location like Boston or Baton Rouge or DC.

We could go with nature like River or Aspen or Flood.

We could go with a nickname for a name like Maverick or Goose or Ice-man.

We could go with a spin on a family name like Ever or Peter or Eccles.

We could go familial with Karl or Dick or Ross.

We could just name him "generic" because we couldn't come up with anything good.

At this point, the list has seen it's fair share of additions and subtractions with absolutely no agreement.  We came up with four names for two other boys, but we really don't seem to be able to come up with a single name for boy number three.

It blows my mind how hard it is this time around.  Like with the other boys, we're pretty sure we have a middle name selected, but besides not being able to come up with a first name, figuring out a first name that fits well with the middle name is proving to be overwhelming.

At this point, were open to suggestions.

Any thoughts?

Monday, June 18, 2012

About Fathers....

Dinner in the mountains. Beautiful night.

I love my dad.  I can sit down and think of so many experiences with my dad that have helped to shape me into the person that I am today.  I grew up with parents who taught me to do hard things, to never give up, and to be honest and dependable and respectful of others.

My dad is a good dad.  He has always been willing to drop anything and everything to help.  He will lift heavy things, listen, and rescue nearly on demand.  I loved growing up with that.  Of course there were frustrating periods of my childhood, and lots of reaching around to the back seat to pinch our legs when acting out, but the older I get, the more those intense periods with my parents fade from memory and I only remember the good times.

My husband is a good dad.  I can't say that in the very beginning I looked at him and said, "golly he's going to be a great dad!"  I'm pretty certain that for the first three years of our marriage, when there really weren't children on the horizon, the thought about how Ross would be as a father almost never crossed my mind.

But now, as we are inching our way closer to 3 boys, I couldn't be more in love with the boys in my life.  They are rambunctious and curious.  They love to sing and dance and tell jokes and play imaginary games.  They are mostly nice to each other, and are so smart.  Sometimes, I spend so much time with these two crazy monkeys that it gets a bit overwhelming....I am very lucky that I have a good husband and my boys have a good day to pick up the slack.

He never hesitates to take them on adventures to the dumps, or to run his Saturday errands with him.  The three of them love to visit Home Depot together and almost always come home with slush's from Sonic.  They build Lego's.  They dig in dirt.  They learn about sports and the boys give their dad a forum for all that knowledge and useless trivia just bursting out of his head.  He gets up with them in the night, reads them stories, and is patient with them in ways that I am not capable of.

I know that I often take my husband and our relationship for granted - unfortunately it's pretty easy to forget each other, and the ways that we quietly support each other when life gets so busy and brains start to swim.  We wouldn't be able to get through this life without each other, and our kids wouldn't be such great kids without both of us.

So, it's a day late (and probably a dollar or two short), but I'm really grateful for fathers.

Friday, June 15, 2012

eight, nine, ten.

Jan 29.012

Elliott was 15 days early and weighed in at 7 lbs 12 oz.  By the time he left the hospital 10 days after birth he weighed 8 lbs 5 oz.  One of the many reasons he was born so early was that the last couple ultrasounds I had, the technicians had him tipping the scale at 10 pounds.

We've always rounded up his weight to 8 lbs.

baby wyatt

Wyatt was 5 days early.  He tipped the scales at birth at 8 lbs 15 oz.  We have always rounded up to 9 lbs because what's an ounce, right?  Though he was never as chubby as an infant as his brother, he's always managed to tip the scales ahead of his peers.

Yesterday I had my monthly ob appointment.  Right now, at 27 weeks, I'm measuring 3 weeks ahead.  My doctor and I have a pretty good re pore and he asked me if I was okay with a 10 pounder because he thinks that's where I'm headed, especially because the goal is to keep this kid inside cooking as long as possible.  I told him that my husband would love a ten pound baby - that he'd think it was the coolest.

My doctor laughed and told me about the baby girl of a diabetic he delivered early last week.  A couple weeks early, the baby girl weighed in just under 11 pounds.  He said it was one of the ugliest baby's he's ever seen - that her face was cute enough but that she had the body of an overweight linebacker and it was just icky.  He then, told me about the mother.  She is a naughty diabetic who rather than modify her diet to meet the needs of her diabetes, she just manipulates her insulin to eat whatever she wants.  And, after every appointment she told him that she went to the Iceberg to get a large over the top shake...monthly, bi-weekly, weekly.

And, her baby showed the consequences of such behavior.  In his own strange way, he was complimenting my diabetic control.  Right now, I've got the best numbers I've had in years and am doing really well.  I may still end up with a 10 pound baby, but not because I'm a terrible diabetic....just because that's what my giant genes want to send my way.

Good thing I've only bought a few 3 month undershirts.......

Just in case.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

in a nutshell....

Went to @hoglezoo to check out the new exhibits. With every other stroller wielding parent in Utah.

Last week, with help of course, I took the little monsters to the zoo. We had a grand time. Thank you, helpers.

I quite literally have no ankles. They are gone. How much worse can they get in 3 months?  Ug!!!

Though during the week they seem to be okay, the last couple of weekends have been spent with terribly swollen ankles. Ankles so swollen that my feet tingle and send sharp pains up my legs. Welcome to my least favorite part of this whole, waiting for a baby experience.

Batch one of NY style crumb cake in the oven. Only 5 more to go. Phew!

She'll get her own blog post soon, by my amazing and beautiful cousin Meranda (also MK also Rwanda) is leaving in two weeks on an LDS mission to Paraguay. The boys and I love her so very much and will miss her. I made 6 batches of NY style crumb cake for the open house. It was yummy but so much work.

All boxed up and ready to go. I quit slicing at 120. I'll finish the rest at the open house.

The 2 weeks away from being a missionary girl. Oh we love her and will miss her.

What else?????

Snuggles with baby Jack, lost teeth, lots of mom school, and the start of swimming lessons. This summer is getting off to a great and busy start.

Nothing better for my spirit than a little tree frog perched on my shoulder.

Mom school Monday. Today it's working. Yes!

First day of swimming lessons.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Too fast!

Egads. My five year old just lost his first tooth.

I can remember certain events from the day he was born like it was yesterday.  Though it was literally years ago, I still remember changing his diapers, teaching him to walk, to feed himself, to ride his scooter.  I still give and receive hugs and kisses, but he's too big to rock to sleep at night.

I used to read him books.  Now he reads me books.

Time moves so quickly.

Nearly two weeks ago, he told me that his tooth was loose.  I did not believe him.  The next morning, his dad said to me, "did you know his tooth was loose?"  I shrugged.

After weeks of wiggling, and tugging by dad, the loose tooth fell out this afternoon.  With no cajoling by anyone, but by a wheat thin.

My 5 year old loosing his first tooth is a big deal.  He's too young, and it makes him look suddenly too old.  Like, bring on the armpit hair and the body odor and the crackly Peter Brady voice.

How did he suddenly go from my baby to my big kid.


Now, if only we hadn't have lost the tooth.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Mom duty...

...It's sort of like jury duty, but way different.

He totally looks like he's 16 and into computer programming.

My 5 year old.  He is so smart and funny.  He's been really good this week and I am so grateful.  He is helpful and kind (mostly) and just really wants to be a good boy.  My mom says that I micromanage him, which I do (I cannot help it) but right at this very minute, I am not micromanaging him at all.  He is next door with his best good friend jumping on the trampoline.  I love him very much.  I am envious of his energy and enthusiasm.  There is a lot to be learned from this boy.

Sick boy roasting on my lap. Ug!

My 3 year old.  He is sweet and sensitive, a venus fly trap disguising itself as a delicate flower.  He is also sick.  He is having a rough week, still suffering the effects of dog exposure from 5 days ago.  I feel bad for him and his lungs.  He loves stickers and art projects and when we watch Peter Pan, he just cuddles up and snuggles on my lap like a little puppy.  With his little puppy.


This afternoon, I was trying to talk to my husband on the phone.  I sent the boys away so that my burned out brain could finish a sentence.  Things got quiet.  Too quiet.  I assumed trouble but hoped for the best.  When I got off the phone and walked towards the deafening silence, muffled giggles filled my ears.  Those boys of mine - those brothers in crime - were hiding under my bed, having secret conversations about sea creatures, starfish in particular.  I startled both of them by lifting up the bed skirt and we all three had a good laugh...until the Chick tried to stand up under the bed and whacked his head on the frame.


I've been thinking a lot lately about my role as a mother.  What it really means to be "the mom".  It is nothing that I ever expected it to be but it is such a valuable use of my time; not sure what else I would ever be or ever do that is as important.  Sure, I get frustrated and exhausted like every other mom out there, and I of course do my fair share of complaining but I really don't know what I would do without my kids.

Years ago, I used to think that I'd be a working mom.  That I would be able to balance family and work and church and everything else like my mom does and like my sister does.  But that isn't me.  I really enjoy being home, being causal, and hanging out with my kids.  What other job in the world lets me be a coach, a pitcher, a photographer, a teacher, a chef (and a short order cook), a crafter, a decorator and interior designer, a domestic servant, a nurse, a champion baby rocker, an occasional nap taker, an historian, a list maker, an organizer and planner, a fount of knowledge, a motivational speaker, a tickler and laughter, a punisher, an errand runner and Target shopper (and much more!) all at the same time. I get to go to the zoo and natural history museum by day, and watch House Hunters International by night.

Lately, I've been frustrated.  A little bummed out.  It could be the swollen ankles and the interior belly jabs bringing me down (and at least for the kicks, making me smile, too). Mostly because the joy in my journey has been a little lost on me.  Life just feels hard right now.  Like the bottom might fall out at any second.

Except the bottom is no where near falling out.

I'm just dramatic!

Spending countless hours a day as a "poop coach" - trying to convince my three year old to let it out instead of hold it in for days (and days and days) isn't such a glamorous or rewarding thing.  But, compared to a lot of other things I could be doing with my time these days, I suppose that I'll take sitting on the red stool in the bathroom shouting words of encouragement and giving high fives for bathroom success.

The opposites are ready for church. One happy as a clam, the other ticked off at the world.

Monday, June 04, 2012

Busy, busy...

Some weekends are busier than others.  This was one of those weekends.  It was good and fun, but exhausting all the same.

This weekend marks the start of "Annie has really swollen pregnant ankles".  Yeah!  I love having my feet hurt so bad I can hardly walk.  It's so awesome.

If you need us this summer, or want to join us, you know where well be.

The boys played in the sprinklers. I blew bubbles and was the dj. Elliott told me that it was the best party we'd ever had at our new house. I am awesome.

I did however, forget to turn the hose off. For two days. My neighbors weren't so happy to go out and try and mow their lawn on Saturday morning and find a pond. Pregnancy brain? Maybe. I thought Ross had turned it off and totally forgot about it. I am making them cookies today.

Summer business is cluttering my life. Almost done making messes. Then Ug!  I have to clean them up. All for the love of shaved ice.

Friday night we opened Shavy Jones Shave Ice for the season. Getting ready for the opening has cluttered our lives, but we are cleaned up now. The health department changed the rules, rather spontaneously, and said no more ice cream. Bummer for us. Bummer for our customers. Not a bummer however for the shaved ice shacks around the neighborhood who are not following the rules and are serving ice cream. My husband? Preparing for war against the health department.

Regardless, we have a new ice system this year and the ice is literally snow. Absolute heaven.

@shavyjones @willie_petersen. Yummy shaved ice tonight.

On Saturday, we went to the baptism of my cousin's little girl.  My cousin and her family live in the basement of her parents (my aunt and uncle's) home.  Three dogs reside in the home and Wyatt is allergic to all three of them.  He made it about 15 minutes before he started coughing and itching and his eyes getting all puffy.  The food and company was good, but we had to leave.

We did however leave to go and scrub down to visit little Jack.  I dare say that my eldest is going to be such a good big brother to kiddo #3.  As my mom says, he has so much love to give, and he was absolutely smitten with his new little cousin.  He couldn't stop rubbing his head and saying, "I love you little jack".  It was totally heart melt worthy.

Meeting baby jack. It was love at first sight

And, what weekend would be complete without a little terror and destruction from the little evil 3 year old that lives in my house.  On Saturday night, he pushed the back door open as hard as he could and replaced the hole he'd punched in the wall with the door knob a year ago.  Thanks, Wyatt.

Then, after using the bathroom before getting into the bathtub he flushed so hard that the toilet flusher fell off, flew into the toilet, and went down the porcelain throne, never to be seen again.  Because it was  late on a Saturday night, we of course had to improvise and not only are their now rules about what goes in the toilet (If you know what I mean) but the lid is off and we are flushing manually until we find the time to get to home depot.


And just to top it off, that particular three year old puked 4 times yesterday night and into the early hours of the morning - a direct result of the allergic reaction to the dogs on Saturday - all giant phlegm balls in the middle of the night.

What better way to start a new week than at the doctors office, right?


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