Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy Holidays!

Wait, what just happened? There's no way Christmas has already come and gone and we're about to ring in a whole new year. No freaking way. My head is still spinning from the whirlwind of holiday festivities and it still feels like I'm playing catch up. I mean, I literally just created my Christmas card (now a "holiday" card because Christmas is over, duh) yesterday. I knew I wasn't going to get them done in time to actually mail them out, but I had at least hoped to have it done before Christmas so I could post it and print them out for family.

Happy Holidays 2011 from Becky, Adam, Aidan, Logan and Lorelai
Behold, one of the only semi-decent family photos of us this Christmas (or recently), and it's blurry. Next year, I'm bringing my tripod (no offense, Mom!)

Unfortunately, we're dealing with a computer malfunction (it's either the graphics card or the monitor) so I can't even see the screen on the computer where I've got Photoshop, so it's been a challenge to do everything on an old work laptop. Anyway... (long post alert!)

We had a wonderful Christmas full of fun, family and a crap ton of gifts for some very lucky kids (and us, too)! We started off the festivities at my mom's annual tree-trimming party on Friday. Growing up, it's always been my family tradition to wait to decorate the tree until right before Christmas. While Adam and I don't maintain that tradition ourselves, it's nice to still hold onto it at my Mom's.

Trimming my mom's tree

handing out the ornaments
My mom and Adam were in charge of handing out the ornaments.

On Christmas Eve, my sister and her kids came over to open presents. When they left, we got ready for bed, and started getting ready for Santa. We said goodbye to our elf, Jack.

goodbye, Jack

Then we read Twas the Night before Christmas...

we read Twas the Night Before Christmas

...and left Santa some snacks and pictures that Logan and Aidan drew for him. They were very specific that Santa was supposed to take the pictures with him, so I had to take a photo to remember them.

goodies for Santa
Logan's picture is on the left, it's Jack flying away with Santa and a reindeer. Aidan's picture is of an elf hat. Apparently they're normally green. Ok, sure.

Then Santa came!!

Santa came!

We had a blast opening gifts like nerf blasters from Santa, a 3DS (to Aidan from Santa), a Gameboy (to Logan from Santa), and water drawing board and slippers (to Lorelai from Santa), and movies, clothes, shoes and Angry Birds plushies from me and Adam. My big gift from Adam and the boys was a new camera lens, and Adam got a key and a tool set specifically chosen by the boys. I gave no input and they did a great job choosing (from an infomercial while we were watching a DIY network show!).
Opening stockings
Opening stockings

Lorelai's new shoes
Shoes, shoes, so many shoes!

playing with nerf blasters from Santa
Loving the nerf blasters

Then we packed up  the rest of our gifts and headed to Adam's parents house for dinner and another round presents. To say that the kids (and us!) are spoiled by such generous and loving family members would be an understatement. We had a great time hanging out with aunts, uncles and grandparents. Although we really missed Adam's older sisters and the cousins, who stayed in Atlanta this year.

opening gifts at Grandma and Grandpa's
How is it possible that yet again, I don't have a good group picture from a family gathering?

By the end of the day, we were all exhausted from so much fun. So hard to believe it's all over.

Opening presents is tiring!
Snuggling on the couch

Every year when I'm stressing at the last minute about shopping, baking, crafting, wrapping and memory-making, I tell myself that next year it'll be different. Next year I won't procrastinate. I'll wrap gifts as I buy them. I'll make lists so I know what to get people. I'll make time to do everything. So far I'm 0 for least 7 (since Aidan was a baby), and it seems like it just gets harder every year.

I stressed right up until Christmas eve until we went to bed. Then I stressed about stressing and not enjoying the anticipation like I should have. Because that's half the fun, right? It just took me too long to be in the Christmas spirit, and now it's over. At least the kids had fun and were able to enjoy every minute. I'll be sad to take down all of the Christmas decorations this weekend, but I guess I can just start looking forward to next year. Who knows, maybe I'll finally get my $&!# together and next year I won't feel crazy. Oh, and lesson learned, we will NOT be scheduling any home renovations right before Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night (a belated 5 nights after Christmas).

the tree was trimmed and the stocking were hung
"The stockings were hung by the chimney with care"

PS: I'll have a Christmas photo post soon with more pictures, and another post about my DIY advent calendar that I'm super excited about.

Monday, December 19, 2011

The ugly counters are GONE

Subtitle: The house is a mess and we're insane

Why in the world did we decide to schedule our installations before Christmas? Between working and the extra stuff like shopping, baking, decorating, and wrapping...finding time to prep the house for new counters and floors is not easy. Who knew? I think we're just so eager for a change, we just couldn't wait.

Anyway, the counters went in last week, and it's such an improvement already. I can't believe we lived with such ugly counters for so long!

good riddance ugly laminate

good riddance ugly laminate
Good riddance, ugly laminate!

But OMG it was so stinky. It didn't even cross my mind that the epoxy and granite polish would smell so toxic. They were installing from like 1:30 to 5:30 so the house didn't have time to air out before the kids and I got home, so we had to go out to dinner. Even now when I open up the cabinets, I can smell it. They look great though. Don't mind the lack of a back splash and the ugly cabinets. I can't WAIT to paint them white!

blue pearl granite
Maybe it's all in my head, but I think the new counters make the cabinets look a *little* better.

Here's the blue pearl granite up close. The slab we chose is definitely more gray than blue. Love it!

blue pearl granite

Floors go in on Thursday. Yep, just a few short days before Christmas, like we don't have anything better to be doing. So I spent Saturday afternoon prying off all of our quarter round trim. Such a huge pain (literally, I bled, bruised myself and got sore) all to save a few bucks in labor costs. We're cheap like that.

I ripped out the quarter round

Adam started ripping up the carpet in the dining room so we'd have a place to put the boxes of flooring, which arrived today.

ripped carpet

And even aside from that we've just got crap everywhere. Bags and bags of Christmas gifts, clothes, toys, etc all over the kitchen and living room. When one part of your house is a complete mess, it's really hard to find the motivation to clean the rest of it.

the house is a mess
Ew. Don't judge me please. At least I finally hung the stockings. And the floor is mopped.

We've even cluttered up the new counters already. Such a shame.
covering up the pretty granite already
Notice the electrical boxes just hanging out of the wall? The idiots who built the house took a shortcut and decided to just go behind the laminate back splash instead of the wall. So now we have to pay extra for electrical work. Great.

Wednesday we'll be having fun ripping out carpet, tack strips and our old laminate, and moving all of our furniture into our living room. Wait, when am I ever going to find time to wrap and finish shopping? OMG.

But yay for progress!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's an elephant, I swear!

And he's got a really long trunk :)

It's an elephant, I swear! 

I got this out of Logan's school folder last week and it was all I could do to keep from busting out laughing in the middle of his class.

Logan has turned into quite the artist lately. Every day he brings home a new creation that he's so proud to show off. He wants to save all of them so I've got to come up with a way to display some of his favorites and store the rest.

He set the bar pretty high with this masterpiece, can't wait to see what he comes up with next!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Our kitchen reno has begun!

You might have noticed in pictures or if you've seen it in person, but our kitchen is ugly with a capital FUG. We knew this when we moved in 8+ years ago and it's been on our list of things to improve "some day" (aka, when we can afford it). Everything is/was very "base model" including the fixtures throughout the house, flooring, counters, cabinetry, appliances, etc. It's actually one of the things that was a plus when buying our first house since it was completely functional, but a lower price point than a house with upgrades. It was actually only a few years old when we moved in, it's in a great location in our town, in a cul-de-sac that backs up to the woods as opposed to other houses, so we've got some privacy.

We replaced most of the light fixtures and faucets right away and even did some major construction a few years ago to add a fourth bedroom over our two-story living room. Now we're FINALLY able to move on to the kitchen. On the agenda: new stainless appliances, granite counters, laminate wood floors (in the kitchen, dining room and foyer), white subway tile back splash, and painting the cabinets white. Structurally the cabinets are fine, even though they're super cheap looking. Adam and I are really hoping that white paint will make them look better. If not, we'll look into new doors at some later point in time. We also want to add some sort of island (another upgrade the original owners opted out of) and replace the huge bug catcher fluorescent light.

We started off by scoring some stainless appliances on an hhgegg Veterans day sale to match our fridge. Adam and I spent the better part of a Friday evening attempting to install the dishwasher and microwave. Key word is attempting. No matter how hard we try, we are just not DIY-ers. Not handy, we lack the appropriate tools, and apparently the general know-how to accomplish tasks that should be easy. We had to call my wonderfully handy father-in-law who came to our rescue the next day.

kitchen renovation: installing appliances
See what I mean? FUG! And a complete mess while Adam tries to place the template for the microwave.

That's probably one of the reasons we've put off the reno for so long. If we could lay our own laminate floors, we probably would have been able to get rid of the ugly, peeling linoleum and stained dining room carpet years ago.

And I'm still debating with Adam about whether we should paint the cabinets and do the tile back splash ourselves. Part of me wants to do it, but finding the time is one of the biggest hurdles for us. I have no idea how so many wonderful bloggers I follow find the time. Working full time and entertaining 3 kids on the weekend doesn't leave the hours and hours of free time needed to paint and tile. So we'll see if that happens, or if we get Adam's painters (the guys who paint his apartments, and who have painted several rooms in our house) to do the cabinets and our granite guys to do our back splash.

Next up is the granite. They did the template yesterday, and we get to pick our slab on Monday. We're going with Blue Pearl, but the slab we choose will definitely be more gray than blue. If all goes well, we might have new counters and a shiny new sink by next weekend!

Floors probably won't be until after the new year, but we picked out a handscraped chestnut hickory laminate from Lowes. I went back and forth on the laminate vs. engineered hardwood debate and primarily due to cost and durability, we went with laminate. If money weren't a factor, I would have gone with engineered hardwood, but I think what we picked is going to look fabulous and I just can't wait to get the ball rolling!

Goodbye fugly kitchen! More pics to come once the counters are in so stay tuned.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

I wish I were a glow worm

I'm not one that typically loses sleep over work. Like ever. I don't dream about work, I don't think about work when I'm not working and I can generally compartmentalize. I value my job, but it doesn't consume me. It isn't my life and never will be. That said, I lost sleep over a work issue on Tuesday and I didn't like it at all.

I got into a bit of a conflict with a coworker during one of my meetings, and he basically shut my meeting down. Said he wanted to end it right then, and voted not to have it next week, due to some fundamental differences of opinion we were having over our new development process (I work for a software company). The purpose of the meeting was to address any issues with the process and find ways to make it better and us more successful, but he didn't even want to hear my proposed resolution (aka, the POINT OF THE MEETING!).

I have a new role on my team that I'm actually really excited about, and this just totally shook my confidence. I think (hope!) it was more a case of shooting the messenger, rather than a personal issue with me, but needless to say, it put me in a really bad mood. I'm an emotional person and I have trouble hiding that emotion on my face, so when the meeting was over, I came back to my office and cried.

I left work and tried my best to let it go, but I couldn't get it out of my head. Not even decorating our tree with the boys completely got rid of my bad mood, which is a complete shame. Now, that's not to say that I didn't enjoy that time with them and it did help a little, but the incident was still on my mind. For what it's worth, watching New Girl also helped with the mood—I was laughing so hard my cheeks were hurting! But I had trouble falling asleep, which just made me feel even worse about it. UGH.

Fortunately, Wednesday was better and I was able to conduct another meeting with the same team without (major) incident. I'd say I slept better, but I'd be lying...although that was because Lorelai decided she didn't want to sleep in her crib. And I promise you, if I'm going to lose sleep about something, I'd MUCH rather have it be from my squirmy baby in my arms than from some work conflict. (Sleep gods, don't get me wrong, I don't want to make a habit of half-sleeping with Lorelai in the crook of my arm. Please, pretty please?)

I was going to make this a wise words Wednesday post, but my internet went out last night while I was typing this up and searching in vain for the perfect quote. Closest I found was this today, which actually is pretty perfect, now that I think about it :)

"I wish I were a glow worm, a glow worm's never glum. Cause how can you be grumpy when the sun shines out your bum?"

And how can I be glum when Lorelai finds the boys' old goggles and puts them on, just like they used to (see here and here)? OMG that face. How did that face not put every thought of work out of my mind?!

Lorelai in goggles

Lorelai in goggles 

Addendum: at work today, my senior VP introduced me to someone else in the company as an "elite employee" and someone else told me he's heard I've been kicking butt in my new role. I'm kind of glowing. But not from my bum :)

Monday, December 5, 2011

It's starting to look a little like Christmas

I'd like to start singing "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas" but we're not quite there yet. I think I'm in denial that Christmas is just 20 days away. We've done some shopping, but not much decking of the halls, so we're not in full holiday mode just yet. At least we got the lights on the tree tonight.

the lights are on the tree
Sneak peak of our tree (AKA a really crappy iphone pic, but there are no
ornaments yet anyway, so whatever)

Ornaments tomorrow, hopefully. I think the plan is to put Lorelai to bed and do the decorating without her. I feel bad not including her, but my hope is that if she doesn't see the ornaments going on the tree, she'll be less likely to take them off the tree. Totally logical, right? Ha. Either way, we'll put all the non-breakable ornaments on the bottom and hope for the best.

I hope to get the outside lights up, mantle decorated, and other miscellaneous decorations up before the weekend. We'll see...

As excited as the boys are that the tree is up, they're even more excited that their elf on the shelf, Jack, has arrived.

our elf on the shelf, Jack
our elf, Jack
He arrived on December 1, and I think he's been doing a pretty good job of keeping the boys in line :) We'll definitely be sad to see him go on Christmas. Lorelai will, too. She's so cute, every time she sees him, she waves hi.

Now please excuse me while I get into the Christmas spirit by staring at our tree. Oooooh, pretty lights.

Deck the halls with boughs of holly,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.
'Tis the season to be jolly,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.

And all that jazz...

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wise words Wednesday: Thanksgiving and giving thanks

“The funny thing about Thanksgiving, or any huge meal, is that you spend 12 hours shopping for it and then chopping and cooking and braising and blanching. Then it takes 20 minutes to eat it and everybody sort of sits around in a food coma, and then it takes four hours to clean it up.” –Ted Allen

We hosted Thanksgiving dinner at our house this year (which I think we've only done one other time) so this quote really rang true to me because my mom and I spent more time washing dishes than we did eating! Although I was more than happy to host and very thankful for all the wonderful food and family, I wish the dishes could have done themselves. Maybe next year we can class it up with paper plates and disposable baking trays so I'm able to sit down with everyone and play some games or look at black Friday ads :)

Thanksgiving table setting
My simple table setting: votives and leaves from the yard in mason jars, along with my mom's china and good silver on a table runner I made using a drop cloth and gold spray paint..

It was actually really nice and not too stressful since my amazing mom and awesome family all contributed food dishes. My mom even cooked the turkey (in my oven) so I didn't have to figure out how to do that. 31 Thanksgivings and I've yet to cook my own bird. Wonder how much longer I can keep getting out of it?

Gotta be honest. I don't go gaga over Thanksgiving food. Turkey? Meh. Gravy? No thanks. Mashed potatoes? Had 'em last week. Sweet potatoes? GAG! I do enjoy my mom's cranberry relish and sausage stuffing, and the pineapple casserole my sister-in-law brought, but other than's all about the family time and dessert to me. Yep, dessert is right up there. Between dessert and family time, I'm not even sure which would win in a fight.

Adam's grandma, mom, step-dad, with Lorelai and our niece Raina

Speaking of dessert, I'm 0/2 for the past two Thanksgivings. Last year my chocolate chess pie was a disaster that never solidified for some reason. This year, my no-bake mocha cheesecake was a disaster. I pulled it out of the freezer because I didn't want it to be as hard as a rock, but it thawed too much and turned into pudding. Really yummy cheesecake pudding that was conveniently in individual cupcake liners, but I was so embarrassed. Even as much as I love desserts, I might have to give up. I'll stick to side dishes and appetizers (hard to mess up chips from a bag and hummus in a tub).

And a bonus quote because I couldn't pick just one:

“A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all the other virtues.” –Cicero

I didn't get around to making an official "Thanks" jar like I wanted to (like this), and I totally dropped the ball on getting us and the boys to write down the little things we're thankful for every day in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, but we did write down a few things. I wanted them to not only appreciate the big things like family, but also the little things that they tend to overlook or take for granted. Some of the things we included in our jar are:

"I am thankful for my mommy reading us books" (Aidan)
"I am thankful for the pumpkin muffins mommy made" (Logan)

Adam wrote down that he's "thankful for the smiles and hugs my family gives me which make me feel loved" and I wrote down that I'm thankful for Lorelai's early morning snuggles, the pictures Logan draws for me, and how helpful Aidan is.

Obviously this is just to name a few. I'm thankful more than words can express—our family is just so lucky and blessed. I don't want the kids to ever take for granted how fortunate they are. To be so deeply loved by so many, to have so many opportunities and material things. I want them to understand this year-round, but I'm going to make a concerted effort between now and Christmas to really work on being thankful for what they have and what others do for them. You know, before they get totally spoiled with gifts thrown at them right and left :)

I want to do an angel tree type of thing this year and get the boys involved in the giving aspect of Christmas (we usually contribute through our daycare, hopefully they do something similar this year). Any other good ideas to make sure the boys are thankful, appreciative and focused on giving? I'm all ears. Last thing I want are spoiled brats who feel entitled and don't care about others. We're a long way from that, but I want to instill good habits and that thankful heart while they're young.

why did I not get a picture of all three kids on Thanksgiving???
Why oh why did I not get a picture of all three kids on Thanksgiving???

Monday, November 21, 2011

To cut or not to cut?

Lorelai's hair is kind of crazy. She was born with a bunch of dark beautiful hair and almost all of it fell out except for one long section in the front (remember the reverse mullet?). We've been pulling it out of her face with bows and rubber bands, but she always ends up pulling them out, so her hair just ends up hanging in her face. It's almost long enough to tuck behind her ear, but not quite, so it's just a huge pain. Especially when it ends up with food in it. Or a big huge booger. Yeah. That happened.

Lorelai's hair

The thing is, Adam and I don't want to cut it. Partly for sentimental reasons (it's her original baby hair!) and partly because style-wise, I don't want her to have bangs. I don't want to have to constantly trim them (sharp scissors near my squirmy child's eyes!) and I like the look of side-swept hair tucked behind her ears. Plus, the rest of her hair is still short, so I don't want her to look like a boy.

Decisions, decisions... (opinions welcome!)

Hair in her face
"Hey! Get this hair out of my face!"

Friday, November 18, 2011

Dilaudid and percocet are awesome.

No, I haven't become a druggie. But I was really sick this week and those drugs helped me get through the worst of it. Meningitis is no joke, folks. Fortunately it was just viral meningitis, not the super serious bacterial kind, but it still sucked, and ended up in urgent care and the ER.

Last Friday, I started to feel like I was coming down with a cold. When I woke up on Saturday to get ready for Aidan's and Logan's soccer games, I had a sore throat and an extremely severe pounding heading that lasted for like 30 seconds when I sat up. I took four ibuprofen, but it didn't help at all. The headaches happened numerous times throughout the day every time I went from sitting to standing, and it would stop me in my tracks and I would almost have to breathe through the pain like contractions. They were the worst headaches I've ever had in my life, and coming from someone who suffers from migraines and gets frequent tension and eye strain headaches, that's really saying something.

We got home at 2:30 and my whole body was achy. I took 4 more ibuprofen and laid on the couch. By 3:00 I was in tears and writhing in pain on the couch, holding my head to keep it from exploding. At one point, I had to jump off the couch (against my better judgment) to stop Lorelai from pulling a chunk of hair out of Logan's head (she ended up pulling out a whole handful!) and I experienced a headache that was worse than the worst. I actually got scared for a minute and thought something in my brain was exploding. At that point I figured I should probably call the doctor. I was worried I had the flu because the body aches, including pain in my spine, and general sick feeling felt very flu-like. He asked me a few questions about the aches and pains and told me I definitely needed to go to urgent care--that they were open until 9, but don't wait.

I was (stupidly) going to drive myself because Adam had to stay with the kids, but he made me call my mom and she rushed right over to take me. Moms are the best!! The doctor there said she doubted it was the flu because it's so early in the season here and they don't even have a good sample to test against so they wouldn't test me. But she did test me for mono and ran a CBC. No mono, no elevated white blood cells, but meningitis was definitely on her radar (my mom totally called it). She said they couldn't rule it out there, but if my symptoms got worse, to go to the ER. She diagnosed me with "viral syndrome" which pretty much means, we have no idea what's wrong with you and can't do anything to make you better, but have some drugs for the pain.

I got a shot of Toradol and a prescription for Tylenol with codeine, and went home to sleep. Things were going better until the Tylenol stopped working on Sunday afternoon. The headaches were worse, my aches were worse, my spine was hurting more (severe shooting pains when I tried to put my chin to chest, although my neck itself wasn't actually stiff) and to top it all off, I started to get nauseous. So I called my mom again and off to the ER we went. I threw up in the car, and my mom even offered to hold the puke bag for me while she was driving. That's how awesome she is. (Don't worry, I didn't make her hold it!)

Also, awesome? My kids. The boys were really upset that I was so sick and they took really good care of me, making sure I always had water to drink and telling me they loved me. And right before I left for the ER, Logan handed me this picture he drew for me to make me feel better.

Logan's drawing

Fortunately, the ER wasn't busy at 4:30/5ish when we got there, so I was seen pretty quickly. The doctor there agreed that it sounded like viral meningitis, but the only way to confirm is with a lumbar puncture. He didn't recommend it because he had already ruled out bacterial meningitis based on my symptoms and my white blood cells still being normal (basically, if it had been bacterial, he said at that point I would probably be on a ventilator fighting for my life) so I certainly wasn't going to beg for a huge needle in my spine if it wasn't going to deliver me instant pain relief and wouldn't change the treatment. Since you can't cure a virus, you just have to let it run it's course and manage the pain, so they totally doped me up to get rid of the headache. Dilaudid, benedryl and reglan. Lots of it, apparently. It definitely broke the pain cycle and they sent me home with a prescription for percocet.

I pretty much slept and laid in bed useless all day on Monday and Tuesday. On Wednesday the aches weren't as severe and the headaches hadn't come back, so I didn't need to take any more percocet. I was even able to catch up on some work emails from the comfort of my couch. Thursday, I headed back into the office. Silly me. I probably did too much, too soon. I realized this after I started to get confused and had trouble concentrating. Honestly, it felt like I was drunk. A very disconcerting feeling when it's been weeks since I've touched a drop of alcohol, and the percocet was out of my system. I left early to go home and rest, and by today, I was feeling much better. Almost back to normal, thank goodness!!!

I feel like such a burden when I'm sick. Adam had to do all the work around the house, my mom had to drop everything to drive me to urgent care and the ER, and my coworkers had to pick up my slack while I wasn't there. I'm just too busy, I can't afford to be sick like that again. 

But with the way my luck has been going, I give it another month before some other ailment knocks me over. In September, it was a severe migraine with aura (vision impairment=immediate doctor visit); in October it was one of the worse stomach bugs I've ever had; then this. Anyone want to place bets on my December illness? It sucks, because I'm not a sickly person, generally!

Please send good and healthy thoughts my way, if you have any to spare!

(Uh, wow. Apparently I had over a week's worth of word vomit to make up for my lack of blogging while I was sick. Sorry for the looong post!)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Baby wipes don't get rid of the smell of vomit.

You know it's almost never a good thing when you see daycare pop up on your caller ID during the middle of the day. Lorelai's teacher called this afternoon to tell me that she had thrown up, so I went and got her right away.

Fortunately no fever, so we're hoping it's just something she ate that upset her tummy, and once she get's it all out, she'll be ok. I got her home and all she wanted to do was snuggle.

sick Lorelai

And then she threw up all over herself and me. YUCK. But you know you're a mom when you care more about how your baby feels than the fact that there's vomit all over your pants and the floor. I got her all cleaned up and changed and tried my best to get the vomit smell off of me with baby wipes, with no such luck.

She felt better for a while so we strolled to the bus stop to get Aidan and she walked back home. I guess that tired her out because she fell asleep snuggling when we got back home.

Sick Lorelai, sleeping

One more vom before dinner (that time I made it to the sink with her), but then she perked up again and was ready to eat. We rocked the BRAT diet with some rice Chex and applesauce. She's bathed and in bed now, so we're just hoping she makes it through the night without any more incidents.

And we're also really hoping no one else gets sick. I'm having flashbacks to a month ago when we were all super sick from some sort of stomach bug that started with Lorelai. Let me tell you, I can't remember the last time I felt that terrible. I have less than no desire to relive laying outside the bathroom door with Logan, us both writhing in pain, or following Aidan to the bathroom in the middle of the night to clean up his throw up and almost passing out from dehydration. It was BAD and seriously can't happen again. SERIOUSLY.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

15 months

This post is late, considering Lorelai turned 15 months on October 29, but since it's one of the well-check milestones, I have to post about it, right?

She's 26 lb 15.5oz (90th percentile) and 31.5 inches (75th percentile). She's wearing size 3 diapers (we're going to move up to size 4 soon) and 18 month pants and shirts, although I just bought some 2T tops so they would be a bit longer.

Lorelai at her 15month appointment

She's still a great sleeper (knock on wood, as usual), great eater, and all around happy baby. She's walking and climbing all over the place. She loves to sit on chairs like a big girl and is working on a circus act of standing on said chairs and balancing precariously. She did a "Look mom, no hands!" but I did the responsible thing and got her down safely instead of getting my camera :)

Sitting on a chair like a big girl

Things that don't make her happy? Getting strapped into her car seat (or being restrained in general), and having to lay still for diaper changes. I'm ready for that phase to be over!

She's got 12 teeth that she likes to help me brush before bed. She still loves to play peek-a-boo, and she's now putting her hands over her face to hide. If she's fussy in the car, one of the ways the boys can make her happy is to engage her in peek-a-boo.

She waves hi and bye and can follow simple commands like "bring me your shoes," "go give your brother a hug," and "show me your belly." She knows where her nose is, and can usually point to her ears and eyes when asked. She reacts when we tell her no, but she doesn't always stop what she's doing. Sneaky little thing.

Oh, and she also still likes her paci at bedtime and on the weekends during naps (or whenever she sees it laying around the house). She doesn't have one all day at daycare though. Not sure when we'll try to break her of that habit...

big slippers
She had fun with Logan's slippers. She's now the proud owner of some hand-me-down superman slippers we found because she was so obsessed with his.

So she's very interactive and can communicate pretty well. She babbles all the time. BUT. Yep, of course there's a but. I'm a little worried (I'm serious, only a little, I'm not freaking out or anything) about her speech development because as of her appointment, she only had 3 actual words: Mama, Dada and uh-oh. And these are the same words she's had since around 12 months. No progress since then. I wish I could remember exactly how many words the boys had at this age, but I really do think they were saying more words than Lorelai is. I know each child is different and subsequent children tend to speak later, but girls also tend to speak sooner than boys, so I just started worrying that something was wrong. Turns out she's at the lower end of normal, but still normal. By 15 months, the doctor said they expect anywhere from 3-6 words. Although she also said that if she didn't have any new words before her 18 month appointment, they would need to evaluate her further. I'm proud to report she starting saying "hi" in the last week. Cross your fingers more words come soon!

I also asked about the peanut allergy and got a referral to the allergist. Unfortunately our appointment isn't until January 5, so we've got a lot of time to wait in limbo until then. In the meantime, we haven't completely eliminated PB from the house (hopefully that doesn't turn out to be a mistake), but we've just been super extra careful to not cross-contaminate anything Lorelai might come into contact with. The boys have been really good about washing their mouths and hands after sandwiches.

Anyway, despite any worrying I may be doing, Lorelai is simply amazing. On a daily basis, Adam and I just can't get over how adorable and sweet and awesome and funny (and on and on...) she is. Can't say enough how much I love this little girl!

Silly Lorelai on her rocking horse
She loves this rocking horse. And balancing precariously on her knees on the top of this rocking horse. Little monkey!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Pumpkin patch

This year for the first time, I really wanted us to all go to a local farm with a barnyard, corn maze, hayrides, corn crib and pumpkin picking...but with they boys' soccer schedules (two games on Saturdays and one game on Sundays), we couldn't work out a good time to go before Halloween.

So we just ended up getting our pumpkins where we always go—a temporary patch on a lot near the grocery store. Lame in comparison to what I wanted to do, but much quicker and the kids don't know the difference yet.




At least this place has bales of hay set up nicely for photos...if you don't mind the power lines dangling overhead and cars driving by in the background. And apparently I didn't mind too much because I have like 4,732 photos to share. (Warning: photo overload ahead!)






Of course the kids don't care about that. All they care about is PUMPKINS!



So many pumpkins, I think Lorelai was overwhelmed.



Or she just wanted me to take the camera out of her face so she could pick a pumpkin in peace :)


Oh no, that's not the one she picked. She had her sights set on a bigger one. One she kept pointing to...


And took off to go check out.


Yep, that's the one!


She was enamored with the huge blow-up pumpkin. Clearly we couldn't take that one home, so she ended up with a much more reasonably sized one instead. Yes, it's one of the ugly wart pumpkins. I think it's cool (plus, none of the small white pumpkins I wanted her to pick out instead looked good at all).


Even if the experience wasn't exactly what I had hoped for this year, we ended up with a pumpkin for each kiddo and pictures out the wazoo. Plus, they all had fun.

But next year, I don't care if we have to bail on a soccer game, we're going to the cool place. If they thought this place was fun, the farm is going to blow their minds!