Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Ten on Tuesday

1. I'm going to try to post a little more regularly again. The easiest way (I've found) to do that, is these 10 on Tues. posts. I may look up some prompts etc. for other posts, but we'll start with this. And alongside that, I'll be cleaning up a little too. I've already fixed the birthday tickers in the sidebar, and there are a few other things that need to be removed/updated. In the same vein, I'll probably be removing the connection to Facebook, so if you use that to learn when there's a new post, you may want to find another method.

2. As I sit here, Curtis is playing Wii Lego Star Wars with Zachary, and Daniel and Eli are entertaining each other in the office with me. One is sharing my chair (against my will) and they are giggling infectiously. They can get away with anything when they're giggling like that.

3. Daniel's potty training is going very well. It's almost easy. I cannot discount the importance of waiting until a child is ready! We'd tried with him a few times before and they were always a disaster. But this time he's ready and it's completely different! I'm really pleased to say that he had no accidents today!! This is huge. Not only did he obediently sit on the potty each time I lead him to the bathroom, but there were a couple times that he took himself! I'm so happy. Now, he didn't take care of his business, if you know what I mean, today, so he should have one tomorrow. Hopefully his teachers at MMO tomorrow won't have to clean him up like they did last week...

4. Our church offers "Summer Mother's Morning Out" to members and Sunday School attenders. It is such a blessing! As long as we reserve a spot a week in advance, we can drop our kids off for four glorious hours - for free! They even feed them (sack) lunch! Tomorrow's MMO will be cut short due to a funeral and visitation taking place at the church, which means I won't be able to eat lunch with Curtis like we usually do on Wednesdays. I'm planning to sew all morning. I have two skirts for me and an overalls for Eli lined up. We'll see how much I can accomplish!

5. I made 4 Hawaiian shirts for Father's Day this year. Before this year, the most I'd made was three. Curtis is willing to go all matchy-matchy to the company picnic on Friday, so I'll get a picture of them and post it for you. I'll probably go into all the gory construction details too, since I like rereading those posts the next time I use the pattern.

6. We're selling our futon. Do you get nostalgic over furniture? I do. It's hard to let this one go, though I won't miss the eyesore or the way it overpowers a room. When we moved from California to Nashville, we built the futon frame (with help) before we left. Then as we drove cross-country, we made a little detour in Phoenix to visit a particular futon store to get a nice, high-quality mattress. This was our couch and space bed for a long time. When we moved from Nashville to Huntsville, we sold the frame but kept the awesome mattress. After moving into our house here, we bought a frame and kept the futon in the office as an extra spare room (the "real" spare room is my sewing room). But it takes up too much space, we don't need the extra seating, and we don't need the extra bed. At least, not for the amount of space it takes up. And the boys crawl all over it and cause it to slouch down. So it needs to go. But I'm still sad about it. I keep asking Curtis, "If we need another futon, we'll get another nice mattress like this one, right??" His affirmative is the only reason I'm willing to part with it. And all this is only on my mind because the buyers are on their way and will probably be here in about 15 minutes.

7. I'm having trouble thinking of things to post...This past year I taught both Sunday School (the 4s - Zachary's class) and Mission Friends (the 3s). It was a little much to do both, but then I signed up for another year of both. We're going to change things up a little though. Curtis was my co-teacher this year, but in August he'll go back to the adult SS and be the assistant teacher there while I'll be teaming up with another teacher and we'll take on the 3s - which will be Daniel's class. She's actually staying in the same age as she taught, while I'm dropping down an age group. But I'm staying with the 3s in Mission Friends, so I'll be getting a double-dose of Daniel and his buddies each week (the class is based on the child's age on or before September 1st, the school cut-off date. It gets confusing 'cause all of my kids have fall birthdays!)

8. (Actually 7.5) So the gal I'll be teaching SS with next year is the wife of the guy who teaches our adult SS. So two couples are teaming up, which I think is really neat. I'm also Curtis will be back in the adult class because we've missed getting to know people and hear about what's going on. FB helps, but it's not the same. There were a few faces at the SS Memorial Day party I recognized from church, but I didn't know them very well. 

9. Curtis is trying to put boys to bed and I'm trying to finish this. I think I may need to just give it up though. Good night!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Well now, look at that. It's been more than a year - a year and a half! Since I last posted. I knew it'd been a while, but geez. The funny thing about that is I read other blogs on my RSS reader on my phone, and there are a couple that I constantly check "When is she going to post again??" and then I let my blog sit here, covered in cobwebs.

Anyway, I just read that post from Jan 2012 and feel compelled to update you, despite the fact that I did not plan to spend this much time on the computer and there are other things that I should be doing and I only have so much time before I need to load up 3 little boys AND 2 large cats and take everyone to the vet. FUN!! But this is more fun, so I'm going to do this because it's summer and that's how I get myself in trouble, by making decisions in this way.

Many things are still the same, but the children have grown considerably and that's where I feel I need to update you the most. Exhibit A:
Zachary is now 5.5 and will be starting kindergarten in August. Daniel is 3.5 and, well, we'll get to him in the next paragraph or so. Eli is 20mos and he'll have his own paragraph as well.

Zachary is so ready for kindergarten. And not just because he can do everything he needs to be able to do before starting K. He's been asking when school will start? Will he have homework? (and excited when the answer is "Probably") Can he have a desk in his room for his homework? With a light on the desk? Repeat ad infinitum. A couple months ago I took him to the school for his kindergarten placement test. It took all of five minutes and it was child's play to him. I mean, really. The teacher was asking him about colors, shapes, numbers, etc. and he's known this stuff for two years. He's asking complicated questions about the universe at dinner and the teacher asks if he can point to the circle. He could have started K last August and be heading into 1st, but he was born 9 days after the cutoff and so he's one of THE oldest in his class. I just hope he isn't bored!

Daniel has made huge leaps and bounds in so many ways. For one, he's talking! He completed a year of therapy with Early Intervention and then transferred to the speech therapist at the elementary school. Leading up to the transition, the EI case worker explained that his case may not be accepted by the school since they have different requirements at that level (something like the child has to have a 30% delay, not 25%, and something else), but when we actually met the school therapist (after lots of paperwork and couple "useless" meetings to make sure I as the parent was aware of my rights - they have to jump through so many hoops so the parent doesn't feel like they're being forced to help their child!!) where was I? Oh, when we met the school therapist, she barely glanced at the paperwork, talked to Daniel for two seconds, and said she'd take his case. Again, it was weird to want your kid to perform poorly so he gets the help he needs, but I guess he was so far behind that it didn't take a professional long to determine that he qualified for services. So every week during the school year I trucked three boys to the elementary school for 30 mins (Z, E, and I hung out in the library) and then took Z to PreK just a little late. Oh I forgot to mention in Z's paragraph that he graduated from PreK last month! He went to "school" at our church for 4 hours 5 days a week. Daniel went to "MMO" (Mother's Morning Out) at the same place for the same 4 hours, twice a week. Next year Z will be at full day Kindergarten, Daniel will be at MMO 2x/wk and Eli still has one more year at home.

Speaking of Eli. No, wait, before I move on, one more thing about Daniel: As of this week, I can say that he has finally said goodbye to diapers! Yes, you're glancing back up the page to check his age: he's 3.5. Well past time for potty training, you say? Perhaps, but the speech delayed him and he simply wasn't ready each time we tried it before. Now he's got it. There are still plenty of accidents, but the part inside his head that had to mature is finally there, so we're going for it. We've got all summer to make it happen and then he'll be all ready to go upstairs for MMO. They don't change diapers upstairs.

Okay, on to Eli. But I need to get the cats to the vet on time, so I'll have to save this and come back. To post now and update later or save to drafts? That is the question...


Well, it's about 4 hours later. The vet only took about 30 minutes, but then we went to Walmart and met Daddy for lunch. I mean Curtis. One of our cats (Beau) has a "rodent ulcer" on the roof of his mouth. We've been dealing with it since March, taking 1, then both cats in every 3 weeks. Cha-ching! The thing hasn't cleared up yet and today the vet recommended that we switch out all food and water dishes to stainless steel, to reduce possible allergens. (Cats are often allergic to plastic, and sometimes the paint in painted ceramic.) I didn't find exactly what I wanted at Walmart, but that didn't stop me from spending $80 there. Over lunch we found one on Amazon and I read the description out loud: "Simply sanitize the stainless steel bowl at high temperatures in your dishwasher to eliminate potential bacteria that can cause your pet harmful infections from micro-organisms, allergic reactions or skin and nose irritations." Huh. Well now. Maybe we should be cleaning their dry food dish a little more often...?

In Daniel's paragraph(s) above, I didn't mention Daniel's specific speech problem now, did I? He talks all the time, but he leaves off the initial consonants. It make him very difficult to understand and we have to use a lot of context clues. He still gets super frustrated, but he can eventually get his point across, so things have much improved. But that's why the school speech therapist accepted his case so quickly: leaving off the initial consonants is very worthy of professional help.

Okay, so finally on to Eli. Eli will be two in September and is starting to try on tantrums for size. But he's such a tender-hearted little cuddle-bug, that they only consist of him hiding his face. There's no screaming or yelling, foot-stomping, or head-banging. He just lies face-down on the floor for all of 3 seconds and it's over. It's a good thing his face is hidden and he can't see the expression on my face when he does this, because it is the cutest thing EVER and it makes me smile every time. He's got a mouth full of teeth, minus the two canines on the bottom, which are close to the surface and will probably break through this summer. He started army crawling at 5 months, "real" crawling at 8 months, and walked at 11 months. He nursed until about 9 months. He hated formula, loved baby food, except for the stage 3 stuff, and if I hadn't read in the previous post that he took a binky at naptime I would have said he never took one after we left the hospital. He also hated bottles and went straight to sippy cups. Currently he consistently out-eats Daniel. He can say Mama and make a few other sounds that sound like words, but every time we encourage more, Daniel reminds us that Eli can't talk! Actually it's more like "E-yi an't alk" Haha, here's a funny: try saying "castle" without the "c". Yeah, that was a fun one to figure out in public!

Well that's probably enough update for now. Maybe I'll try to be a little more consistent again. To tell the truth, I'm regretting that I haven't been on here much. Rereading that post I realize there are so many little things I've forgotten (like the binky) and there are probably so many more from the last 18 months, but they're lost because I didn't record them anywhere. Never too late to pick back up though, right? Actually many of them are probably recorded on Facebook. I'm a lot more active on there, mostly because it's so easy to do from my phone. But it's only good for short little pithy things. I've also got a tumblr, but I'm as sporadic there as I am here. Oh and Twitter too.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Ten This Week

1. This week has been a mixture of appreciating getting back into a routine and hating getting back into a routine. Specifically, not being able to sleep in and take my time getting ready in the morning. Hopefully next week will be better. Hopefully a certain someone will start doing better at staying asleep at night...

2. We bought a space heater for Eli as his room is by far the coldest in the house. He often wakes up cold at night and no amount of warmer pjs and sleep sacks have been able to keep him warm (while in just the next room over Daniel sleeps with just a sheet and Zachary sleeps with no covers at all). Last night was the first night with the heater and although the room was pleasantly warm and Eli's little hands were toasty, the thing is rather noisy and emits quite a bit of light. Whether the heater is to blame or it's something else, Eli did not sleep any better last night. This morning was rough. In fact, I'm still in my pjs at 10am.

3. I know you've been anxiously awaiting an update on the playset. I'm happy to report that it's coming along very well and we are on track to finish it this weekend (especially since the weather is supposed to be extremely pleasant for January).
We've been wondering if anyone else has built one of these and whether they experienced the same misunderstanding regarding the time estimate? The instructions say it'll take 4-6 hours to build. It isn't taking 4-6 hours. The above progress was achieved after 3 days of non-stop work while the sun was up. While we realize our time estimate would be longer since we bought the lumber ourselves instead of in a kit (and therefore had to sand, stain, measure, and cut it ourselves, which accounts for the first 2 days), there's no way the thing could be built in half a day by one or two guys. Our only guess is that the instructions left out a bit of clarification in the time estimate, such as "4-6 hours every day for a week" or "4-6 hours for you and your 10 closest friends" or "you and your professional build-team".

4. Zachary is trying to tell time. He looks at the (digital) clock and tells us, "it's seven four four" (7:44. That was this morning. He was trying to convince me it was time for breakfast. I wasn't sure I believed him yet). Sometimes he says, "nine seven one" (9:17. Not sure why he reverses the digits on the minutes. It can be a little confusing.) The trick now is to help him understand what those numbers mean. Oh, and teach him how to read a real clock (analog).

5. Zachary is also identifying the first letter of words he says (sounding it out and naming the sound.) It's awesome. Once in a while he freaks us out when we spell a word to each other and he knows what we said. I suspect he's using context and good guesswork, but still. (Curtis said to me, "How about a s-h-o-w?" as in, "should we let the boys watch a show" and Zachary said, "are you guys talking about a show?" Curtis and I mirrored stunned looks at each other.)

6. Daniel's screeching is getting worse. He's so frustrated that he can't tell us something, especially when his brother is picking on him. On the other hand, his sign language is improving. The speech therapist is scheduled to come to the house on Friday the 20th and I simply can't wait. (The case worker called on Monday asking if Friday the 13th would work and I had to tell her it wouldn't. I was a little surprised that the 13th was the earliest the therapist could come and was even more surprised to hear that the next available spot wasn't until a week after that! I've gotten used to seeing the pediatrician, chiropractor, dentist, etc. right away or in the next couple of days. The exception, as I think about it, is my hair dresser, who always has the next two weeks booked. Which reminds me, I had to cancel my appt. before Christmas and I haven't rescheduled, which means it'll be at least another two weeks before I can see her. Whoops.)

7. Eli is holding his head and feet up during tummy time (looks like a seal) and sometimes pulling his knees under and pushing that cute little bottom into the air. He's rolled from his back to his tummy once or twice but didn't know how he did it and hasn't been able to consistently repeat it. He's gotten very good at tracking us as we walk by and recognizing our faces when we stop to talk to him. He likes laughing at us. Curtis has gotten one giggle out of him so far. He's also cooing quite a bit and reaching for and grabbing toys. He (thankfully) takes a binky (pacifier) for sleeping but isn't terribly attached to it. He is currently napping in his crib and I really think that it's because it's warmer in there. Previously he would only nap in the Moses basket in the living room. I thought it was because he preferred the noise. Huh, imagine that, the kid likes to be warm... (Although he's woken up a couple times and needed me to come in and each time the heater was on. I think it makes too much noise when it starts up. The older boys sleep while listening to music from an iPod. Eli has a speaker-dock in his room and I think it's time we get him an iPod too. Time for a little eBay cruising this weekend.)

8. I think most of you know that I work part-time as an Area Director with AuPairCare. If you or someone you know is considering their childcare options, would you mention AuPairCare to them? I'm trying to grow my cluster here in Huntsville/Madison and surrounding areas, but if you're looking at childcare in other regions, take a moment to learn about hosting an au pair as chances are there's an Area Director is your area who would love to talk with you! You can visit AuPairCare.com for more information about hosting an au pair and you can also visit my local AuPairCare blog here: http://aupaircare-hsv.blogspot.com/. Also, if you're a local business owner I would love to partner with you! (There's even a referral bonus available for you) - contact me for more information.

9. I mentioned in my last post that's I've been reading more since we got the Kindle Fire and asked if anyone had recommendations of books to read. Then a friend on Facebook (or was it Google+?) mentioned a website called GoodReads and I was hooked. The part I like best is that it will generate recommendations for you based on what you've read and liked. Excellent! If you're on GoodReads, look me up! My user name is wjcolion. I've been adding books I've read (and a big shoutout to my sis (in law) Elizabeth who organized our bookcases, making it easy for me to find my books and so enter them in the database!) and adding title after title to the "to-read" section. The only trouble (besides there being so, so many interesting-sounding books out there and so not enough time to read them) is that most of the books are not available in Kindle format. Don't get me wrong - I love the feel of a physical book, but if it's not on the kindle then I have to physically go to the library to get it and that requires patience... That, and it's easier to hold the Kindle while nursing.

10. The boys and I enjoy going to library on Thursday afternoons. Zachary beelines for the computers while Daniel pulls books off shelves and plays with the Lego table in the corner. When it's about time to go I convince Zachary to get off the computer by letting him pick out a DVD. Daniel also gets to pick out a DVD, though he is considerably less picky in choosing one than his older brother. Anyway, earlier this week I had downloaded a book to the kindle and finished it the following day. While the book was certainly enjoyable, I was frustrated that it was done so quickly. So yesterday at the library, I walked along the shelves looking for thick books. Anything 2" or thicker I searched for on GoodReads and if the description sounded interesting, I added it to my "to-read" list. (I was able to do this while holding sleeping Eli, by the way. Two hands are generally needed to pull a book out, read the back, flip through, and determine whether it's a possible read.) I felt rather clever. That feeling soon vanished, unfortunately, when, during my next nursing session at home, I looked up those titles and discovered that not a single one was available in kindle version. Very disappointing. So now I need to either find more interesting titles that ARE in kindle version, or log onto the library website and start using their "hold" feature in anticipation of our next trip to the library.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Ten on Tuesday This Week

1. We are thoroughly enjoying our Christmas break. Curtis had a four day weekend and then "worked from home" yesterday. We've watched shows, played games, put together puzzles, read books, and enjoyed not having any outside responsibilities.

2. You'd think I would have been able to get a "Ten on Tuesday" post up on Tuesday, but sitting on the computer just doesn't seem to happen when Curtis is home. So I'm getting it written on Wednesday, which, considering I was rarely posting at all, isn't that bad at all. I'm thinking that I should just aim to get something posted each week. As long as it's up somewhere between Monday and Thursday, I can still call it "Ten This Week", right?

3. We totally took advantage of the flexibility of not having anywhere to go or anyone to entertain when it came to Christmas dinner. We bought a turkey early last week and popped it in the freezer in anticipation of a traditional dinner with all the fixins. On Thursday we decided we'd have the turkey dinner on Christmas Eve so we could just enjoy our gifts on Christmas Day while munching on leftovers. We put the turkey in the fridge to start thawing. When we got it out on Saturday it was nowhere near thawed. No problem, we'll just have turkey dinner on Christmas Day after all! When we got it out on Sunday, it was still as solid as could be. Well, guess we won't be having a turkey dinner for Christmas at all! We pulled some other things out of the freezer for dinner and put the turkey back in the fridge. The plan is to have the turkey dinner for New Year's Eve. Next year, we'll either pull the turkey out of the freezer a good week before we want to roast it or we won't put it in the freezer at all. Had no idea that chest freezer would freeze the bird so deep that it would need twice as much time to thaw as the instructions recommend!

4. Zachary crawled in our bed at 4am last night feeling warmer than he usually does (which is already pretty warm!) and the thermometer this morning showed 100.6. So he's chillin' on the couch watching Franklin with his brother. What he really wants to do, though, is play the new Wii game he got for Christmas: Lego Pirates of the Caribbean. That boy is addicted to screen time.

5. We've instituted a payment system where he has to pay 5 tokens to watch a show or play a Wii game. He earns tokens by helping out around the house. It's actually working pretty well: instead of bugging me all day "can I watch a show" or "Can I play a game" he follows me around asking, "Can I help you with something?" He's getting pretty good at putting dishes away and loading the dishwasher, putting clothes in the washer, putting clothes in the dryer, emptying the dryer, sorting clothes, sweeping, vacuuming... It's amazing how many things a 4-year-old is capable of doing when he's motivated!

6. Eli's Christmas present to us was sleeping 11.5 hours straight on Christmas Eve. It was awesome. If only the other children in the house could have slept straight through the night too. It seems there's always someone up in the middle of the night for one reason or another. Eli hasn't slept straight through like that since, but that's okay. We're working on it. At least he's sleeping in his crib in his own room now. He won't nap in there - too quiet apparently. Kid seems to nap better in the middle of the living room amidst all the noise. Good thing, too, since he's got two older brothers! He naps in the Moses basket (sorry the picture is a little dark) and is actually napping there as I type. So sweet. I'll be sad when he outgrows it.

7. Remember last week I talked about our Kindle Fire and how many books I've read? Well, I've exhausted the series I had started and am a little gun-shy about choosing new books and need suggestions. Read any good books lately?

8. The boys has been saving their gift money and we are really excited to be getting a playset for the backyard! The hardware and slide arrived earlier this week and Curtis will be picking up the wood this afternoon. The plan is to stain the wood this week and build it this weekend. I'll let you know how that goes...

9. Speaking of new purchases, I fell in love with a bedding pattern at TJ Maxx and am so, so pleased it was still there when I got a chance to go back yesterday.

However, they were out of the shams and cute toss pillows and such (except one), which is really disappointing. So our bed looks like this:

(Not to mention the lack of headboard or even a bedframe...) Hey, if you're in the Huntsville area and happen to see this pattern somewhere, would you put a couple shams and toss pillows on hold for me, then come watch my kids while I go get them?? Curtis and I searched online and couldn't find it all. But even without the decorative bits, I just love the way it looks. Love it.

UPDATE: When I went back to TJ Maxx to return some other items, I dragged Curtis with me, just in case they had some of the toss pillows in stock. We ended home bringing home another quilt that I get to use as material to make pillow covers! I'm really excited 1) about a fun sewing project and 2) about having a complete, finished bed set when I'm done. Now I need to figure out what pillow forms we want. I'm hoping to have enough material to also cover the cushion on top of the cedar chest Curtis' grandparents gave us for our wedding. The current fabric is exactly the type that our cats like to sink their claws into, so it's always been covered with another fabric.

10. Lastly, how about an update on the townhouse? Our tenant of two years moved out in October. The property manager finally found new tenants who will move in on Dec. 30th. They talked us into lowering the rent but they signed a 2-year lease. There were several things that needed attending to before they could move in, so the property manager sent us some quotes. We choked and decided it would be a significant savings to drive up to Nashville and do the work ourselves. It ended up taking two trips to get everything done, but in the end we didn't spend anywhere near the hundreds of dollars we were quoted. Some of the work was fixing or installing things that we would have liked to do before we moved out but simply couldn't afford it (and the tenant didn't seem to care) and other things were just getting it ready for new tenants.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

1. Hard to believe I'm actually getting a "Ten on Tuesday" post up on a Tuesday!! Perhaps it has something to do with having 2 out of 3 boys asleep and also a willingness to suspend reality and pretend I have no other chores to do.

2. From 2:30 to 3am last night I sat on the couch crocheting in the dark, checking on Eli every so often to convince him he doesn't need a middle-of-the-night feeding anymore. He eventually caved and fell asleep. I went back to bed. but an hour later I heard him crying. I asked Curtis to "stick that binky back in" and he went and brought Eli back. I fed him and we all slept until 7:30. Curtis was late to work.

3. It is so awesome to watch Zachary play with the Little People nativity scene. He's acting out the story with the characters. Sometimes he lets his brother play too.

4. We found a buyer for our Risograph. We weren't sure we would but listed it on Craigslist anyway. Within days we got an email from the owner of a local roller rink. He said he'll sometimes print 20,000 copies of something, and his 30 pages/minute printer wasn't cutting it. So we unwrapped all the plastic wrap from the machine and turned it on to make sure it was working. That was when we discovered that all of the rubber bands inside were dried out as every single one broke while we were testing the thing. So the guy said he'd buy it if we could get all the bands replaced and verify that it's working fine. Here's the awesome part: he even said he'd take the 6 extra drums off our hands too! (a Riso can only print one ink color at a time, and to change ink colors requires having a different drum for each color.)

5. Today was "Goody Day" at Curtis' work. Employees' families are invited to come for a potluck lunch. We hadn't participated before but thought we would this year. It was fun. And now 2 out of 3 boys are sleeping, so it was totally worth it!

6. Tonight is the division Christmas party at Dynetics. Goody Day and the division party don't usually fall on the same day, but this year they do. Of course we're going. That's two meals I don't have to prepare and clean up! Someone called me hardcore for being willing to bring three little kids to Dynetics twice in one day. I don't think they realize how much easier it is to convince the boys to go somewhere in the car than it is to prepare food that they won't eat. And then clean up. No, no contest.

7. We got all of our Christmas cards addressed and stamped last night and they're set to go out today. We're 6 shy of the 100 mark this year, which is our limit. Next year may involve some paring down of The List.

8. Using our debit card rewards, Curtis and I bought ourselves a Kindle Fire shortly after Thanksgiving. In the less-than-4 weeks that we've had it I've read about 7 books. Hello, my name is Jennifer and I'm addicted to disappearing into a book for hours at a time. And my husband is an enabler.

9. Daniel doesn't seem to be on track with his speech development, so our pediatrician referred us to Early Intervention, a federally-funded program to help kids under 3 who are developmentally behind in certain areas. Last Thursday two evaluators were supposed to come to the house at 10am to determine if Daniel qualified for help. At 10:15 I called the office to verify I had written the date and time down correctly. I had. At 10:40 I called the office to ask if they were still coming. The gal said she'd call them at call me back. At 11:00 I called the office again. She told me that the evaluators had come to the house and got no answer at the door. However, they could hear the dog barking. I told her we don't have a dog. Turns out they went to our apartment. The one we moved out of over a year ago. All this simply because they didn't want to verify my address over the phone when I made the appointment. "We already have it in the system," they said, "It's the one the state sent us." Whatever.

10. Last Monday two ladies came to the house (which they found with no problem now that they had the correct address) and evaluated Daniel for any developmental delays. They asked me a lot of questions and they also played with him to see if he could perform certain tasks. They evaluated him in cognitive development, physical development (including vision and hearing), communication development, social or emotional development, and adaptive development. He passed all areas with flying colors except for communication, which was right on the cutoff. His receptive communication (how well he listens and understands) almost pulled his expressive communication (talking) up too far, but since he was just on the line, he does qualify for aid. Whew. It was weird to sit there and watch him, wanting him to perform the tasks and do what they were asking him to do because I know he's so smart, but at the same time wanting him to be unable to do the task so he would qualify. I guess I can be happy with landing right on the cutoff line. Sort of like the best of both worlds.

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Monday, December 5, 2011

A hair-raising tale

A day in the life...
While changing Eli I noticed a hair wrapped around one of his toes. The cute little toe was turning colors above the hair and it looked like the hair was embedded in the skin. When I couldn't get it off my first reaction was to call his doctor for advice. They couldn't see us til 2:00 - two hours away. I didn't think it should wait that long and my next thought was that I needed another adult's help, so I called my neighbor Liz. I'm so thankful to have such a wonderful neighbor! She stopped in the middle of making lunch, scooped up her son and came right over. The two of us were able to get the hair off with little difficulty. She headed back home to lunch and Zachary and Daniel came running in to say that they saw Beau (our outdoor-loving cat) catch something and take it under the patio table. We couldn't find anything under the table so I went back in to finish getting Eli dressed. The boys came back in again and it took me a few moments to realize that they were telling me they had seen Beau take his catch INSIDE the house. They had left the back door open and I had no doubt that Beau had been thrilled to bring his prize inside. Not good. Not good at all. I started looking for him and quickly eliminated rooms, until my room was left. I walked into my room, turned the corner into the bathroom and my stomach did a backflip when I saw the cat slinking into my closet, with a live rat in his mouth. A live rat. I tried to grab the cat (while holding Eli in my other arm. Was I thinking I could carry the baby and the animals outside? Or was I just trying to get them out of my closet? I don't know) and he dropped the rat. Which ran deeper into my closet. A live rat running loose in my closet. I screamed. Not a high pitched "help" scream, but a loud low noise that escaped me several times before I could get it under control. There was a live rat in the closet. Beau was not pleased that he had dropped it and quickly ran after it. As I left to set Eli down and get gloves or a bag or something, I could hear the thing squeaking. At least it wasn't running loose in my closet anymore. When I returned, Beau had dropped the thing again and fled. I now had a dead rat in my closet. I scooped it and the article of clothing it was on up into my gloved hands and carried it to the closest trashcan, then dropped the bag and the gloves into the trashbin outside. Then I washed my hands. A couple times. Ugh. I hope those boys learned why we close doors when we go out or come in! (This is not the first time Beau is responsible for creatures in our house. He once chased a lizard through the front door that I was holding open as I scolded the cat and told him to drop it. It almost crawled up my pant leg but thankfully decided against it and ran outside again. I think the rat story is worse though.)

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Saturday, September 24, 2011


I like to eat. Did you know that? I don't miss many meals and I'm always bummed when I'm sick or something prevents me from enjoying something. I don't know if my boys enjoy eating the same way. They can be so picky sometimes that they go to bed hardly having eaten any dinner. When they reach some milestone or make some discovery that allows them to enjoy food in a new way, I get so excited for them!

When Daniel's molars started coming in I was so thrilled for him that he was going to be able to eat all sorts of foods that he couldn't eat before! I don't think it mattered to him that suddenly he could actually chew instead of gumming foods or swallowing them whole, but I couldn't be happier.

I realized in the hospital shower this morning that I couldn't wait for the nurse to bring Eli in, yes because who doesn't love snuggling a newborn, but mostly because my milk is coming in and he's going to get to eat real food! He still isn't here yet, which is about the only reason this post is happening, and when we do start nursing this morning he probably won't be excited about the milk like I am, but that's okay. I can't wait.

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