Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Thank heavens it's almost over....

January totally sucks. Just sayin' 

 I think that, collectively, all the people around the world could do without January.  I mean, it's only 31 days, we could divide those up right?  Give April an extra week, maybe June or September a week or two because January?  You totally suck.

If it weren't for my sweet boy having a birthday in January, I could totally and completely get rid of this icky month.  What a crappy way to start the new year.  But, then again, maybe it stinks to help us appreciate the rest of the year.

Why so down on January?  Because, in the last few weeks:

the breaks on my car squeak so loud when I'm backing out of my driveway it's like there is a humpback whale beached in the snow.

my dishwasher no longer washes dishes.  It seems to just sprinkle them with water.

my dryer, unless loaded with a perfectly medium load, bounces all over my laundry room as if it's alive and coming to get me.  We just recently had it balanced by a professional, but it didn't help.

my very nice, very expensive vacuum is broken.

the extra fridge/freezer in garage stopped working and I had to throw away a ton of thawed out, "frozen" food.  Then, it started working again.  Then it stopped.  Then it started.  Then it stopped.


My kids are sick.

I am sick.

My niece is sick.

My brother is sick.

The snow is cold.

Putting away clothes is really hard work.

I may or may not have found fecal matter belonging to a rodent in my basement.

But, there is always  a light at the end of the tunnel.  It cannot get much colder.  I feel spring coming in my bones (oh wait, that's arthritis!).  And, at the end of March we are going to Disneyland with my family.  That may be the only thing getting us through the bleak.




Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Elliott: 6 years old!


To my first born:
I've been thinking about what to write to commemorate your 6th birthday for some time and I am at a loss of words.  You my boy, are a remarkable little kid and I love you lots and lots and lots.
I am amazed at your quick mind, quick wit, and goofy sense of humor.  All you need for entertainment is a National Geographic, some Lego's, or the video camera on my laptop.  You can keep yourself busy with just about anything and I love watching your mind work, your wheels spin, and your personality grow.  You love burps and farts, boogers and goobers of any kind.  You are an eating machine and want to help in the kitchen in any way you can.  You are polite and almost always kind.  You look out for others and are friendly to all.
When you get nervous or ask for something you don't think you'll get, you talk in a high pitched squeaky baby voice that drives me crazy.  When you talk to Quinn, you are gentle and kind and so soft and careful.  When you talk to Wyatt?  You roll your eyes and often yell, but so does everyone else.


You love school and that makes me so happy.  I was so proud of you when we did parent teacher conferences in the fall - you are well above your peers in academics and just thrive off of learning.  You are an excellent reader, can do hard math problems, and are turning into one amazing artist.  Some of the stuff you draw absolutely amazes me.  Like your dad, you must always hurry to be first.  And, like your dad you have terrible handwriting.  But also like your dad, you have a photographic memory, never forget anything, and remind me when I do something wrong...but in a nice way.
I love watching you be a big brother.  Every afternoon, you and Wyatt get lost in your games - Star Wars, race cars, NBA basketball, Veterinarian clinic or Animal Safari.  There is often fighting, but for the most part, the two of you make amazing partners and as I'm stuck in a chair feeding the hungriest baby brother in the world all the day long, listening to the two of you makes my heart smile.
And that baby of yours?  You are so most excellent with your baby brother.  You are gentle and kind.  You can get him to giggle better than anyone else, and when he sees you in the morning his whole face lights up. 

These days, I don't ever get to spend as much time with you as I'd like.  Life is just so busy.  But, one of my most favorite parts of every day is when were driving somewhere in the car and I catch your eye in the rear view mirror.  You'll smile, or try to wink.  Or, you'll do  "I'm watching you" with your fingers - pointing them to your eyes and then to me.  It's those moments, where your personality just shines through, that I love you the most.
Yesterday morning, as usual, I couldn't get you out of bed.  The lights were on, the covers were off, and the secret weapon - slobbery baby brother - was in full swing.  Finally I said to you, "Elliott.  Do you realize that this is your last day of ever being five years old?"  With that, you opened one eye, looked at me and grinned ear to ear.  Getting older is pretty cool....when you aren't that old.

Let's see, what else?  You love to wear a watch.  You make your own bed every day.  You can fix your own ham sandwich for lunch.  You LOVE to dance, and your favorite song is "Dynamite" by Taio Cruz.  You love to watch nature shows, cooking shows, and science shows.  You can howl like bigfoot.  You weigh 50 pounds and wear a size 1 shoe.  When you are hungry, you eat everything in sight.  You prefer fruit to almost anything.  When Wyatt wants a snack, he wants pringles and when you want a snack, you want an orange.

Because you are the first born, you've been the guinea pig for your goofy parents.  I'm so sorry for that.  I know that your dad and I are hard on you, harder than we need to be and that we need to cut you some slack.  But, you are the first born of two first borns, you can handle the pressure - we love you so much and want you to be perfect.
And guess what kiddo?  You pretty much are.
Love, love, love.
Happy Birthday.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

2 years ago...

Two years ago today, I mustered every single ounce of courage I will ever have in my entire body.

Two years ago today was a Saturday and, in the morning, I was standing in my kitchen, listening to George Michael's "Faith" on repeat, making treats for Elliott's fourth birthday party, that we were having in the evening.  I was dancing and singing and playing with the boys when the phone rang.

It was my mom.

She called to tell me that in the night, my grandma's spirit had left her body.  That she was on life support at a local hospital.  That my grandpa was keeping her body going so we could all come and say goodbye.

I started to cry.  I collapsed onto a chair.  I sobbed into Ross for what felt like an eternity.  The boys and I had just been to visit my Grandma two days before.  She wasn't doing well.  Sick to her stomach.  Couldn't breathe.  When we walked into the house, she was sitting on her red bar stool, leaning against the kitchen sink, sipping a diet coke.  She still had her pajamas on.  While we were at her home, she did the best she could to laugh and smile and show us that she was happy we'd come to visit, but you could see the pain in her eyes.

When it was time to leave, I asked her if there was anything she needed me to do for her.  As always, she said no, that coming to visit was enough.  The boys and I got ready to leave.  Wyatt gave her two hugs that day and I swear she squeezed my hand tighter than she ever had and told me that she loved me.  I told her that I loved her, too.

The day my grandma passed away felt like the end of the world.  But, at the same time, life never even stopped for a breather.  The birthday celebration for Elliott went on that night as planned.  The week between her passing and funeral went by in a blur and now, two years later, we are still going on.  Still living.  Still remembering.

I think about my grandma every single day.  She is infused into my every breath - my entire being.  Isn't it amazing how one person can be so influential?  It is.  Yesterday we were hanging out at my mom's because it was a holiday.  I'd just changed his diaper and Quinn was lying on my mom's bed.  My mom came over to talk to him and his eyes brightened as he cooed at her.  We talked about how my mom thought that Quinn looked just like Wyatt at about the same age, in a picture of my grandma holding him on her back deck.  My mom turned to Quinn, his bright, unblinking eyes locked on hers and she told him that even though Grandma didn't get to hold him on earth, she surely got to hold him and give him hugs in heaven before he got here.

There is definitely a reason babies cannot talk to us on earth.  They would spill too many of the secrets of heaven, telling us about the people and experiences they met and had before they were born.  I'll tell you what though, that baby was sent to me by the grandma's in heaven, and watching his bright eyes yesterday, he knows that they are watching down on us here on earth.

grandma 2

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Stuck in the Middle

CouSins at the 10 am toilet bowl b Bball game .  Cute kids watching their uncle.

It's the middle of high school basketball season.  Region play started last night for the Hunter Wolverines.

Before we talk about that though....

Up to last night, the season, like the two before it, has been rough.  All the family and I sit game after game and watch very talented, smart, and nice boys face an opponent unprepared, under coached, and un-inspired.  Phone calls have been made and e-mails sent to all who might care lamenting the horrible coaching staff - a staff that doesn't know the names of all the kids or how many kids are even on the team.  Coaches who cannot put together a good line-up.  Coaches who don't know how to call a play, make a substitution, or call a time out.

Now, as the type of basketball family we are, we know the game.  We've been watching and playing the game our whole lives and if called to duty in any capacity, could whip together an in bounds play on a seconds notice.  So, to watch these boys lose games they should not lose.  To sit by and have a losing record for the first time in their life as a team (as sophs and juniors they only lost 5 games all season) is so hard.  Granted, we don't sit by.  We yell and scream.  We cheer and chant.  We try to motivate when no one else does.

And, some of us (me!)  yell at assistant coaches and call them morons in parking lots after horrible losses.  But, some of us (me!) feel justified in said yelling because said assistant coach was shoving his face full of free food and had sour cream dripping down both sides of his mouth like some sort of sick, taco eating clown.


I digress!

See the score.  Right now we are winning

Last night was the start of region play and...

Our boys won! And they won decidedly.  And, my brother played amazing defense and shut down the opponents star center to the point that every time he touched the ball in the 4th quarter, he just kicked it back out to a guard because there was no way he was getting past the defensive wall that was my brother.

It was a great game.  High scoring and high energy.  I was proud of the boys.  It looks like, in spite of all the dumb-dumb adults they are surround with, they may have pulled it together on their own to be the team they know they can be.

Finally and about freaking time!!!!!#HHS bAsketball

Ding doings!

This week, the Twitter @Willie_Petersen is my basketball hero.  He even inspired me to play last night and I didn't die or throw up!

Friday, January 04, 2013

Quinner: 4 months

Alrighty baby boy.  Another month older and a few days late on the blog post.

I took you to the doctor today.  The stats are:
Height: 27 inches (rounding up from 26.75)
Weight: 19 pounds (rounding up from 18.14)
Off the chart for height and weight.  75% for head circumference.

The last 4 weeks have been pretty fun.  You are a pretty fun little guy.  You are a smiling and cooing machine.  You love to laugh at your brothers and chew on all the toys you got for Christmas.  The tickle spots that work the best are your fat little legs, your fat neck, and right between your shoulder blades.  Lately, when you're playing on the floor, if you feel like we are ignoring you (which we are not by the way) then you let out a tremendous yawlp.  Just to make sure you have our attention.

Merry Christmas to all!  Can I go back to bed now?

Just in the last few days you've figured out that if you arch your back and wiggle your toes just so, you can squirm your way out of anything.  The swing.  The bouncy seat.  A chair.  My lap.  It's pretty un-nerving that for being so immobile you are so mobile.  A sign of things to come, I'm certain.

You are so much like your brothers in so many ways.  You have a temper (though we don't see it often) and an appetite like Elliott did as a baby, but you are calm and zen like Wyatt was (minus the puking). And, even though I see both of your brothers in you, Grandma Judy thinks you look just like Wyatt.

If only he did this during the day in a bed

Lately, you freak out in the car, but only at night.  We're certain you are afraid of the dark - except when you are asleep.  The car light over your seat must always be on.  You don't like dark rooms.  When Elliott and Wyatt were little they would pull blankets and towels over their faces and drift off to sleep.  You however are the opposite.  We must be on "blanket watch" constantly because if you happen to cover up any part of your face, you panic.  Seriously.  Stop breathing, hyperventilate, stiff as a board panic.  And then when we get the blanket off your face, you sob and sob and sob.  It would be pretty cute, if it wasn't so sad.

What else?
You are starting to like the bath and just in the last week actually put your feet in the water instead of keeping them curled up into your armpits.

You are getting close to rolling over.  You can scoot yourself in a circle with your legs and butt. You can roll onto both of your sides but cannot get all the way over,

You sleep all night long, from about 8:30 pm to 7:00 am.

You only poop once a week but your farts are still so gaseous that the junior high kids that sat in front of you at a basketball game a couple weeks ago smelled it and thought it was one of them.

You've officially moved up to 8 oz bottles and are starving all day long.  This month will mark the start of your transition to formula and bottles instead of mom being your exclusive form of nourishment.   Why?  I'm tired of being a human pacifier, and itchy and though I love you oh so much, it's time to move on.  I met my goal, you're cool with a bottle and life without a pump will be grand.

You celebrated your first Christmas showered in gifts.

You help me make the bed every morning.

You love to be naked.

Hello bright eyed naked boy.  17 weeks old.

Your skin is so soft I cannot stop squeezing it.

I love me some sweet baby neck!

You aren't quite like your brothers before you because you refuse a pacifier and aren't a burrower.  Those boys still need mama (and dad) to put them to bed every single night and need songs sung and hands held.  You though are different.  It will be interesting to see what your sleep patterns and night time routines are as you get bigger.

New toy....

I still haven't found your song.  Elliott's song was discovered on accident during a colic induced screaming fit when he was a couple weeks old (Rainbow Connection).  Wyatt's song I started singing to him on the day he was born (Silent Night and Hey Jude).  Your song has yet to come to me.  I've tried out a bunch, but the closest one to sticking so far is "fools rush in" (Elvis!) and "somebody's crying" (Chris Isaac).  I'm not sure that either is quite yours though so I'll keep trying.

In addition to all of that?

You are awesome.

Love you lots baby boy.  Lots and lots and lots.

I can open my eyes real wide


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