Family Photo

Family Photo

Monday, July 27, 2009

You Can't Fool a One Year Old

What do all the above picture have in common? Notice the furry red thing that Maia is holding in all of them. That is her "Bah- Boo" (Elmo doll). That thing is probably so germ infested that if CPS ever got their hands on it, they would take my children away from me just because I allow my daughter to sleep with that nasty doll. Bah-boo was bought for Noah by his grandma about 8 or 9 months ago but gradually Maia began to take more interest in it and it went everywhere with her. I've run over it with the stroller quite a few times after it has fallen on the ground, it has had many different types of food and drink including milk spilled on it, it has been thrown up on, and it has come into contact with a pee diaper. Have I washed it? Well, when I looked at the tag it said "surface washable only" which to me means I can only wipe it down with a towel which will do absolutely nothing except add more germs. My other reason for not washing it is that Maia loves it so much because of the smell. Every time she goes to bed she grabs Bah-boo's hand puts it up to her nose and sticks her thumb in her mouth and she is out like a light in no time. If I wash it, she might not ever sleep again because she obviously finds the smells of vomit, sour milk, and pee soothing. Last week, I even tried buying a duplicate doll to see if she would take it. NOPE! She wanted nothing to do with it.
Today, I finally decided that it was time to wash the nasty doll. During our river trip it had fallen on the floor of the casino and had picked up a bit a cigarette ash smell and I felt guilty letting my daughter sleep with that unwashed thing any longer. It came out of the dryer with it's fur all clumped together, it's eyes scraped off, and smelling fresh and clean. At nap time, I crossed my fingers, put her in her crib and put both the clean Bah-boo and the duplicate Bah boo next to her. She immediately went for the newly washed one, grabbed its hand, put it up to her nose, got a confused look on her face, tried again, held the doll up to me and said, "Uh-oh mommy!" SHOOT! I tried to look like I had no clue what she was talking about and gave her the duplicate one, she already knew that trick so she just tossed him aside held up the newly cleaned one and began to frantically repeat, "Uh-oh mommy!" I said, "Good night" closed the door and prayed that she would just settle for the made-over Bah boo. No such luck. She eventually cried herself to sleep with both Bah boos tossed to the opposite side of the crib. I just pray that tonight goes over better. I am tempted to pour some milk on the doll and leave it outside for a few hours just to bring the smell back.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

The Power of the Nap

This morning was definitely NOT a good morning for my offspring. It is Bup's birthday today and Noah was supposed to go up on stage during this morning's church service to give her a present. I dressed him up in his nice button up black shirt and gave him a pep talk about what he was supposed to do. He whined and acted up all morning and made me extremely nervous. Then, when I was at the point of doing anything to keep him from a melt down, I gave him his milk even though I knew it was a bad idea. Sure enough, the sippy cup top pops off and the milk spills all over his nice black shirt. I rush him into the bathroom and laugh so that he will not cry and soak him with water. He is supposed to go on stage in 4 minutes. I beg him not to cry, tell him that he needs to be a good boy for Bup and rush him to the side of the stage. He begins to whine because he wants to color on her present. I find a pen nearby and let him color on it. He is satisfied. When it is his time to go on stage and give Bup her present, he walks up slower than a turtle with me harshly whispering for him to "GO" behind him, hands her the piece of paper and walks off. No hug, no kiss, nothing! But, I have to say that I was thrilled. He made it up without a tantrum and with no one noticing his milk soaked shirt. As soon as we left the main auditorium, the melt down began. There was no bribe or threat that could calm him. He just needed his bed. Once we picked up Maia from her class, we had double trouble on our hands. She would not let anyone come near her because she was so cranky. We had to get out of there fast. We did and when we got home, we put the kids straight to bed.
When they awoke 2 hours later, I was amazed at the angels that emerged from my kids' room. They were happy, respectful, well-mannered, and as pleasant as could be. I am in awe of the power of the nap and want everyone to know that my kids will be nap until they move out of my house at 18. It seems that my children go to sleep as little demons and wake up as angels so if a nap is what it takes to exorcise those demons then I am firm believer in naps for life.
Here are some of the cute pics I got of my little angels after their nap. Hard to believe that they could be so evil, huh? Don't let the cute smiles fool you!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Thoughts From This Week...

Will I ever be able to use the restroom in my own house by myself ever again or will I always have little ones follow me in and watch me closely?

I wish I could torch all these stupid ants and watch them scream as they shrivel up and DIE.

Hmmm...are there ear plugs for little kids? I wonder if my kids would sleep longer if I put them to bed with ear plugs in their ears.

There must be something rotting inside my son's belly? It can't be normal for a 2 year old's farts to make my eyes water and my gag reflex to go wild.

I seriously need to look into anger management classes for my one-year-old. She just violently hit and kicked the wall and then attempted to bite it after she accidentally ran into it. I feel sorry for the kid that ever bullies her.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"God Made All the Naughty People...Go Away"

This weekend on our 4 hour drive up to Laughlin, the kids started to get restless and I had run out of distractions so I decided to buy myself 5 minutes of peace by telling them a Bible story. Great idea, right? Wrong! Before you tell your 1 and 2 year old a Bible story you should rehearse it.
My first problem came with trying to explain to my Noah that the Noah I was talking about was not him, he was a different Noah. To make the distinction clear I referred to the Noah in the story as "Old Man Noah." And, I described him as a bald man because that is how all the children's books that I've seen illustrate him. I am sure that when my son sees a bald man now, he will refer to him as "Old Man Noah," and I will be mortified.
Then I ran into the problem of explaining evil. How do I explain just how evil the people were to make God that angry that He would want to wipe them out? I couldn't say they were whining and not sharing and being mean to their sister because that would make my child completely afraid that God might kill him the next time he takes a toy from Maia (hmmm...maybe not such a bad idea)! I settled on describing the evil people as "naughty."
The story further stumped me at the part where God brought the rain to kill off all the evil people. Here is how my story went...
...Old man Noah and his family and all the animals got on the BIIIGG boat that he had built and God sent the rain and...(oh shoot, I can't say "kill," they won't understand that and besides that just feels to harsh to say to a 1 and 2 year old.)...and God sent the rain and...(I glance at Ricky hoping for a little help. He laughs and shrugs, getting a kick out of my loss for words)...makes all the naughty people... go away.
I pause and look at Noah to see what kind of reaction he will have to my age appropriate language. I could tell he was mulling over it in his head. Then his eyes got big and he looked at me and said, "The people were naughty so they had to go away Mommy." Phew! Good enough. I think he got it. The funny thing is that that is the part of the story he remembers the most! I would have thought that the animals or the boat would have made the biggest impression. Nope! My son has been walking around all week telling me, "The people were being naughty, so they had to go away mommy."
Sheesh! Who would have thought that telling the Noah's Ark story to a 2 year old would be such a challenge?!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Heavy Heart

Hmmmm...lots to write about...but not much of it is lighthearted...

Going through a tough personal situation, still trying not to drown in the tidal wave of motherhood, and just found out that a friend is facing the hardest decision of her life. You see, she is about 24 weeks pregnant and the doctors just told her that the baby has severe abnormalities. They say his bones are broken and he won't make it to birth. He will develop his frontal lobe soon which means he will feel the pain of the broken bones. They are suggesting that she allow them to induce labor so that the baby will not have to experience pain. She is torn. He kicks and hiccups in her womb. My heart is heavy. Pray for her and her husband.

On a lighter note (there usually is always a lighter note), here is the conversation I overheard between Noah and Ricky today.

Ricky: You smell. Did you poop?
Noah: (matter of factly) No, just farted. I no need to change my diaper.

Monday, July 20, 2009

On A Lighter Note...

Check out my son's crazy hair! And, NO, I never want to cut it!

The Not So Pleasant Side of Motherhood

I have always been a lover of math. Why? Well because it consists of formulas. Two plus two always equals four. There are no exceptions. I am a person who functions on formulas. I follow directions and never break the rules because I like knowing what the result is going to be. However, I am quickly figuring out that raising kids is not about formulas.
While pregnant, I read every parenting book in the world, I asked current parents a million questions, I observed others carefully, and I decided exactly what "formula" I would use on my children. I was going to be consistent, not spare the rod, instill manners at an early age, and teach them to treat people with respect. I just knew that if I did all these things, my kids would be well-behaved and not ever be "those kids" that no one wants to be around. Just reading that makes me laugh out loud! As we speak my daughter is on the floor in my room throwing a full blown tantrum. My formula is definitely not working.
This past weekend consisted of Noah whining and throwing the worst fit I have ever seen any child ever throw, all while we were on vacation. One morning, we held everyone in our group up because of Noah's awful behavior. We were all ready to walk out the door when Noah tells us that he wants to take his pacifier. He knows that his pacifier is only supposed to be used in bed. It is a very strict rule that we have established and he knows it very well. However, on this particular morning he decided to test us. We told him that his pacifier had to stay in bed like always and he went seriously...he completely lost it. Ricky and I found ourselves in a dilemma. Everyone was waiting on us but we couldn't take him out in the out of control screaming state that he was in. We told them to go on without us and Ricky and I followed our formula of time out, spanking, and then just holding him telling him we loved him but that the pacifier needed to stay in bed. He screamed, fought, cried, threw himself on the floor, and refused to calm down. I prayed for wisdom, started crying, and removed myself from the situation. Somehow, after 15 minutes of complete chaos, Ricky got him to calm down, and we left for a day at the lake. All day long, all I could think about was why my kid would act that way and what I did wrong and how could I be such an awful mother. To make matters worse, the rest of the day consisted of one battle after another with my son. And since Maia is such a "mommy's girl," who cries if I put her down or if anyone else comes near her, I held her all day long in 115 degree weather. By the end of the day I was exhausted. I wanted to be as far away from my own kids as I possibly could get and I was so disappointed in myself because I felt like their behavior was nobody's fault but mine. My formula had failed me and I was my own biggest critic.
Up until about 4 weeks ago, I loved being a mom. I enjoyed my children and everything was going according to plan. Now, well it's a much different story. I know these days will pass and people say that I will miss these days but let's just say I am ready for the hourly battles, multiple tantrums, constant whining, clinginess, and daily spankings to be over with. I don't know if this is a common result of having 2 kids so close together or if it is me, but I am exhausted!
I will continue to be consistent and raise my kids the way that I believe God has called me to raise them because I have seen it work. I am a living example. My parents tell me that I was a "devil child" who got spanked every day for a year before I finally changed my behavior. They stuck with it and I finally broke. So, my mom is the perfect person to encourage me in times like these when I feel like a complete failure. Tonight, I will be having a long conversation with her to get the boost I need to make it through another week with my Terrible Two Year Old and Tantrum Throwing Clingy One Year Old. Pray for me!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

My Elegant Maia

I have dreams of my daughter growing up to be elegant, well-mannered, prim, and proper. But, at the rate she is going, my dreams are going down the tubes fast. I have managed to snap a photo of her during meal times the past few days and this is what she looks like...a mad woman with food everywhere. She seems to think food should be use as a hair product...hmmm...she may be on to something. It does seem to provide a greasy shimmer and sometimes can even serve as a hair accessory.

Vacation for a Mom

I am heading off to Laughlin this weekend with my family for a river trip. Although I am excited, I realized that I have to adjust my thinking of "vacation" now that I am a mom.
The first thing I noticed is that I really don't matter in the grand scheme of things. We are leaving when I get off of work today and my kids' stuff and my husband's stuff is all packed and ready to go but...what about me? Well, my laundry is piled high and I have no clean clothes to take. I look like a French Hippie who does not believe in shaving and who is sure to scare everyone who gets a glimpse my unsightly under arm hair. My toes have a 2 month old pedicure still lingering and I might as well wear my Frump Girl sign.
Then, as I was pondering our sleeping arrangements, I realized that this vacation means that I will get a total of ZERO sleep. Isn't vacation supposed to be a time of rest and relaxation? Not for a mom. You see the 4 of us will be sleeping in one small hotel room. Since Noah is too big for a pack n play he will be sleeping on the hotel bed which means that each night will contain at least 2 falls off the bed which will result in loud crying which will lead to the startling of Maia which will turn into 2 kids crying hysterically in the middle of the night. Not to mention that they will both be unable to fall asleep when we first put them to bed because mommy and daddy are in the room with them.
As for my third child, my husband Ricky, he is like a little kid on Christmas when it comes to this trip. To be able to wake up early and spend the whole day on the lake wakeboarding is his Heaven. Thus, I must be a good wife and make this trip as enjoyable as possible for him by handling the kids when they wake up at night and during the day when they are whining because of the 113 degree weather.
By the picture I have painted, you must all be asking why I agreed to go on this "vacation." Well, some little part of me thinks it will be fun and hopes that the kids will be so tired they will sleep through the night and be angels during the day... and I know that this will make for some great blog material...what can I say?...I am committed to my craft!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

My Little Nemo

Noah loves to be in the pool but he is very cautious. The last few times he has gone swimming we've tried putting floaties on him but he didn't really trust them. He would freak out if I would let him go even though he had the floaties on. However, today he turned over a new leaf! He was swimming with Papi and Uncle Luke and he became a little fish. I told him that he was my Little Nemo (he loves that movie). He was even brave enough to jump into the water off the step and swim by himself to the side of the spa. The best part was the face he made before jumping in. So cute! To get him to swim in the big pool took a bit of bribing, but he did it. I am so proud of him!

Friday, July 10, 2009

I Need A Strong Drink

It is only 1:00 p.m. and I am in serious need of a couple glasses of wine. My friend Korin invited us to a play date at the water park in Corona. I was so excited to spend some time with my friend and let the kids run and play in the water. However, I could tell that my kids were not planning on being pleasant for me the moment I got them in the truck. Noah's whining had begun and Maia was obviously not thrilled about having to skip her morning nap.
Our time at the park consisted of Noah whining, whining, and whining some more, Maia being cranky at not getting her way, Noah wandering off and not coming when I would call him, Noah crying to go home and get his pacifier, and me being completely embarrassed of my children. I really don't think that my friend will ever invite me to another play date again. I felt like the mom who has "those children." You know the ones that drive everyone crazy and no one wants around? As I was packing up to leave, Noah decided to wander off (while crying) and head to the other side of the park by himself. Because, I was so tired of fighting with the whiny kid, I just let him go. I kept my eye on him while I continued to pack. He walked by another family who looked at him and then scanned their surroundings to look for the irresponsible parent who would let their kid wander off like that. She made eye contact with me and asked if he belonged to me. I wanted to say "No," but I reluctantly said yes. Thank God she didn't reprimand me for not keeping him close to me. We finally got to the car and by this point I was ready to scream. Noah needed a spanking and so I parked the stroller containing Maia next to the truck, I administered the much needed spanking after making sure no one was watching so CPS would not be called, and I placed Noah in his car seat. I turn to get Maia and realize that the stroller has rolled right up to the front tire of the truck which means her feet are covered in black messiness. After cleaning her all up and getting everyone buckled in, I start the truck engine and notice a nasty smell. By this time both kids were very ready to go home and were letting me know by their loud cries, but I could not make the drive home without finding out what that nasty smell was. I sniffed both kids' diapers and both sets of shoes. Noah's shoes were the culprit. He had stepped in dog poop. Just my luck.
The shoes are now in the back of my truck, both kids are asleep, and I need a drink.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Door and the Window

I had a nightmare moment the other day. One of those events that you pray never happens to you.
It was a hot summer day, the boys went out wakeboarding and I decided to take Maia swimming at my mother-in-laws house. My in-laws were both at work so it was a quiet afternoon spent eating lunch, laying out, and swimming with my baby girl. While I was attempting to lay out, Miss Maia Belle was running in and out of the house playing peek-a-boo with me. I was half paying attention to her and half twittering on my phone when I heard a door slam. I look up and see Maia's little face pressed up against the door smiling at me from inside the house. I jump up and think "Oh Lord NO! NO! NO!...Please don't let this be..." I run to the door and push the handle...LOCKED! "Okay stay calm. You don't want her to freak's not the end of the are only in a bathing suit that you would never wear in public, with your daughter locked inside the house with no keys and no way to get in. Don't panic. I frantically jiggle the handle hoping that maybe it will magically open. Maia begins to cry hysterically. I run like a mad woman all around the house checking all the doors...all locked. Maia is crying harder, her face is red and her lips are blue. I kneel on the other side of the door and tell her that mommy's here and she is going to be okay. I point to the door handle and tell her to reach up and turn the little I crazy or something? She's ONE; she looks at me like I am crazy. I check the windows, there is one open, but the screen is not one of those flimsy ones that I am used to and I cannot figure out how to get it off. I sit down in front of the door and call my sister-in-law who has a key. She is nowhere near and wouldn't be able to get there for at least 30 minutes. I think about calling 911...then I think about them seeing me in my bathing suit and decide that there has to be another way. I call Ricky. He is always calm and collected and will tell me what to do. I explain, he stays cool, then he instructs me to punch in the screen. I tell him that the window looks pretty small, he assures me that I will fit. I hang up, grab a chair to climb onto so that I can reach the window and call on my inner ninja. I karate chop the screen. It pops off. I very ungracefully climb through the small bathroom window acquiring a 12 inch long bruise on the back of my leg, jump onto the toilet and run to get my traumatized daughter. It was like a slow motion hero scene from a movie as I scooped her into my arms and apologized for not thinking to unlock the door before I let her play with it.
Note to self: always take a cover-up outside with you when laying out just in case you have to call 911...oh and make sure the doors are unlocked.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Looooong Weekend

Have you ever just felt done? You know, that feeling where you just need a break like a 2 day break from your at the next sound of their whiny voices you might just snap and jump out the nearest window? Like at their next defiant moment you will give them away to the person in closest proximity? Maybe I am the only one...(now that I think about it, I know quite a few super moms that are probably appalled at these thoughts)...but hey this is my confession blog and so I am confessing that this is me right about now. 
As I sit here writing this, my son is his room whining for me in his bed. He is supposed to be asleep but of course he is whining instead because most of his waking moments these days are spent whining...okay, that's better, I just turned itunes on really loud to drown out his voice. 
This past Friday Ricky and I had made plans to hang out with our friends. We were going to drop the kids off with the grandparents and have them spend the night so that we could have our much needed break, but as usual things did not go according to plan. Noah got sick and so instead I spent the day and evening at home with a whiny kid. This seemed to set the pace for the not-so-pleasant weekend. Saturday, was spent with family and when Noah wasn't sleeping, he was whining about not wanting to eat, or his "owie," or not wanting to swim, or something else. Then this morning I received a call from my husband while I was at work. He was at his wits end and I could hear Noah crying hysterically in the background. Noah was having a melt down and Ricky was ready to run far far away!  I felt helpless as there was really nothing I could do aside from talking to Noah on  the phone and trying to calm him down. Eventually Ricky got him to calm down. The rest of the day again consisted of Noah whining for one reason or another and it seemed that the time outs and spankings only served as a 5 minute remedy. The weekend has now come to an end and Ricky just went on a grocery run and I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't return for a week or so just to give himself a break from the little 2 year-old terror we named Noah.  At this point I dread waking up to another full day of spending time with my whiny 2 year-old. How awful is that? 
The good news in all this? I feel like I am on my knees praying for God's wisdom and strength about a million times a day. One of the things that He reminds me of daily is that I am to be an example of Him to my kids always. I can completely taint their view of Jesus at this early stage in their lives. Therefore I cannot blow up at them, or say hurtful things to them, or throw myself out the window! God does not do that to us. Although He is firm and He does make us face consequences, He is always patient, loving, gentle, and slow to anger. So, when I feel like I am going to lose it, I take a deep breath, pray for wisdom and patience, and remember that I am to be Jesus to my kids...oh and I put in an emergency call to the grandparents and ask for them to come to the rescue!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Fourth of July

Usually 4th of Julys consist of going to see a firework show done by professionals because my husband is not to be trusted with fire! But, this year we were invited to do our own fireworks with our neighbors and so I prayed for no one to catch on fire and for Ricky to behave and we did our own firework show with the neighborhood. It turned out to be a great time with only 2 illegal bombs made by Ricky and Jeff (neighbor) that harmed no one. 

Although Maia didn't care to hold the sparklers she enjoyed watching all the pretty fireworks as long as I was holding her. 
Noah and Nathan enjoyed the sparklers and next year Noah will be wearing a hat. His unruly curls seemed to attract the sparks and made for quite a few close calls. 

This is definitely my favorite picture of the evening! He was over it by this point. Two hours past his bed time and daddy's bright idea of giving him 5 sparklers at once with way too much smoke blowing in his face was not such a good idea!