Tuesday, March 30, 2010

I have two very exciting things to report!

First is that I have less then $100 left to reach my goal of $500 for the MS Walk! If you haven't yet donated and want to, please visit my donation page.


Second is that Max is really grasping the potty now! I had noticed some minor changes in his potty attitude this weekend, but since he was in diapers for parts of each day thanks to our plans to be out and about, I didn't want to make anything of it. I guess I should have though because not only is Max pretty much going potty whenever you set him on the potty now (assuming he has to go) but he went twice at daycare yesterday! This is of course extremely exciting to me because he wouldn't go potty in front of anyone and hadn't gone potty anywhere but at our house. I was so excited yesterday! But then it just got better, and may be TMI for some, just a warning.

This morning, I walk into Max's room and he says "poo poo" as a hello to me. Now this is odd so I assume he is dirty. Well he isn't, so we go potty and then I sit down to feed Rory her bottle. Max comes over to me and says "poo poo" again and taps his butt. So we all go into the bathroom for the second time that morning and I read to Max while feeding Rory. (Not an easy task.) Max stood up two different times and I asked him if he was done and both times he said "no" and sat back down. Next thing you know he stands up and says "poo poo" and sure enough, the little man has finally taken a poo poo in his big boy potty! I was so excited that I think I weirded Max out a bit because he gave me one of those looks that says, "Um, mom, what's going on?" Oh well, he eventually jumped into the excitement with me and Rory even giggled as we danced the potty dance around the bathroom.

So we're 3 weeks in and I am seeing big changes. I think my goal of Max's 2nd birthday is looking better and better!

Oh, and yes, my first thought was "get the camera". No, of course I didn't, as soon as I realized what I was thinking I was completely grossed out. It's just that as a mom, I've adjusted to trying to grab the camera at all big moments in my kids' lives, so while it was a nasty thought if you understand the reasoning behind it you'll see I'm only partially insane. No poo poo pictures will be seen on this blog, or taken with my camera. Well at least not by me!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Yesterday I had a marvelous day away from my children. (Yes, I do enjoy my breaks away.) I was also excited because I was co-throwing Becca's baby shower! Who wouldn't be excited to celebrate baby's future arrival? Naturally Becca was glowing - pregnancy really does suit her well.

The food was awesome and we all got a good laugh that we each did our parts to try to make Becca's life a little easier since she's currently on a food restriction thanks to gestational diabetes. It was pretty silly, and my attempt at sugar free cupcakes (purchased - I didn't make them) was a flop. But hey, it's the thought that counts! Don't worry, there was also cake for all the non-diabetics, and Becca helped herself to a minor piece too.

It was a nice afternoon away from home, I wish I could have stayed there all day talking and laughing with everyone. But of course, my other life waited and I was soon rushing off to meet Dusty and get some shopping done. We were able to sneak away without the kids for an hour as my parents watched them. Of course, that hour was spent shopping, but it was our first solo trip in a very long time so we relished in it. Now on to yet another busy week!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

We had a very eventful Saturday. We started out in Stillwater for a carnival. Rory had a great time in the front carrier. Max, well, he was a bit overwhelmed with everything. He had fun shooting baskets and spinning the wheel for suckers. When I only let him have one sucker he wasn't too happy, but thankfully there were plenty of other things to distract him with. After the carnival we went on an Easter Egg Hunt!

We went with Andrea and Ava, some friends of ours and I forgot to ask Andrea if I could post pictures of Ava so unfortunately you won't see more then just her back in the picture below. The kids had a great time playing before the "hunt" started. I love this picture I got of Max coming down the slide.

Rory was a trooper in the beginning, but it got to be a bit too cold for her; combine that with the lack of a quality nap and my smiling, happy go lucky girl insisted on being carried pretty much the whole hunt. Thankfully, Andrea likes holding Rory and she was a great help as we'd take turns chasing after the kids and carrying Rory.

It was my first time going to a Easter Egg Hunt. I was surprised by how many kids were there since we stuck close to home, which is pretty rural compared to our surrounding areas. But the kids didn't seem to mind. Max was showing me one of the two eggs he got. Yes, he only got two eggs. The kid didn't quite grasp the concept before all the bigger kids swooped up the eggs. But I got this picture and that is all that matters.
It was a nice Saturday and a good way to prepare for Easter. Now I just have to buy eggs to dye. Of course I bought an egg dye kit and convinced myself I had plenty of eggs only to come home and find out we have none. Ah, and that is why I made parent of the month!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I'm not above posting embarrassing things about myself. I realize this is my blog and I could just put embarrassing things about my kids and maybe even my husband, but really, who couldn't use a laugh at their own expense once in a while? Yesterday I had one of those incidents.

I was outside playing with Max and Rory after work and I kept feeling a breeze on my thighs. I figured it was just because I was wearing lighter pants and since I just bought them a month ago I wasn't used to how light they were. When I got into my pajamas yesterday and went to get my pants I realized there was a gigantic hole right in the middle of where my butt was! Seen in the middle of the picture below:

I mean, how do you not notice that the seam ripped on your pants?! Thankfully they are a loose fitting style of pants and on top of that, I've lost a bit more weight since last month and was upset that my new pants were on the big side. So I don't think anyone actually saw the hole. At least all my coworkers claimed to have never seen it and I know that Randy or Dusty would have said something had they noticed that evening. So now I'm stuck with a newer pair of pants that have a split seam. Here's another picture with my hand in the pants just to give contrast on the hole:

So that is my embarrassing story from this week.

In not really embarrassing news, but life altering - I got my hearing aids on Monday! I'm in the 45 day trial period so I'm still adjusting to them and I am not yet able to wear them the whole day. (It gets painful, kind of like how when someone gets glasses it takes a while to adjust your body to having them on all the time.)

I've been pleasantly surprised. I decided not to tell a lot of people that I got them and then wait to see if they say anything. So far, its been obvious that they are not easily spotted. Here's a picture of what you'd see when looking at my ear:

The hearing aids are really tiny and they don't wrap around the back of my ear, they just sit up on the top so you can't even see them from behind. I am a little self conscience of them but I've been pulling my hair up to try and convince myself that they are really not a big deal and that most people wouldn't notice unless they were looking for them. So far, its working, as not many people have noticed them until I've said something - including Dusty who knew I was getting them. He thought I didn't have them in when I met him. So that was reassuring.

The difference in my hearing abilities are not always obvious to me, but them something little happens and I get a big grin realising that I just heard something I wouldn't normally hear. Listening to the radio has become a real treat as I can make out a lot more words on the songs that I didn't even realize I wasn't hearing! I think the biggest thing I struggle with now is that a lot of people still don't understand why I have hearing aids. It isn't a volume thing, I can hear people talking when they whisper or are quiet, its a frequency thing, so certain sounds were never clear to me. Like "sss" "th" "ph" things like that.

I'll continue to work with the audiologist on adjusting the new hearing aids. One issue I'm having is that when Max cries there is a slight ringing. So obviously there are still issues I'll need to work out, but so far I've been very happy with the quality and enjoy hearing "new" sounds!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

We went to Chuck E. Cheese last night for dinner and to celebrate Allison and Katie's birthdays. The kids had a great time and I know that I had a wonderful time talking with everyone and seeing my nieces and nephew.

Here is the birthday girl Allison getting into her cupcake - yummy!

And don't forget birthday girl Katie. Of course, my adorable nephew Oliver can't be missed either. She has some pretty cute kids if you ask me!

I also was able to get a picture of me with my nieces and nephew. Oliver is 3 months, Lyla is 18 months and Allison is 3 years old.

We had a great time. Happy birthday Allison and Katie!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

We've had an interesting few days. Max is still working at going "big boy potty" and we are averaging about 2 a day. Of course, they both occur at home but I am feeling very confident that he is getting the idea. One issue we've run into is that he gets so excited when he goes that he stops himself after a couple drops, thus wetting himself a little while later. Hopefully this will fade out and is just a good sign that he is excited about using the potty chair.

This weekend he was playing around while Dusty was folding laundry and he jumped up excitedly and proclaimed "potty". Sure enough, he wet himself, but the positive thing is that he is getting the concept. So now we are waiting for him to understand telling us when he has to go so we can make it to the bathroom, instead of him telling us after it has happened. (And to those of you that like to rub it in that Amelia is pooping in her potty, ahem Laura, I think the friendly competition is now on!)

Auntie Ta-Ta was over Sunday morning and she was even helping Max use the big boy potty.

We'll continue to use the training pants and have him go sit on his potty chair and hope that he starts understanding this whole process more and more. I am very happy with the progress so far.

In Rory news we had her 6 month checkup. She is still a big girl. She is at the 90th percentile for her height at 27 inches long - she's going to be a tall one! She weighed in at 17 pounds which put her in the 81st percentile, so she's losing momentum there. Her head circumference was 17 inches keeping her in the 85th percentile, so she's still showing lots of brains.

As noted previously, Rory has been suffering from a cold and it turns out she has bad ear infections in both ears. So she is currently back to antibiotics for 10 days and then we'll have to take her back in to have her ears checked again. She also has a case of eczema which means we now have to remove bath time as a bedtime ritual for her and slather her body with sticky Aquaphor to help combat the dry skin patches. Behind her knees is the worse and so we are putting cortisone cream on those areas to help with the inflammation. Nothing like taking your daughter in for her well check to find out that she is not well. Then again, it is Rory, is she ever really well?

Doesn't she look so content sleeping? I'm hoping that the medicine is helping with any ear pain and the sticky lotion is helping with any itch. This is only the second time I've ever found her sleeping on her back - spread eagle - so I'm going to take it as a good sign and hope that we'll some day have a very healthy little girl!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Rory turned 6 months old yesterday! This is a very exciting birthday as a lot of things change at the half year mark and she can start handling more "grown up" things like being able to put lotion on her, sunscreen in the summer, being able to take Motrin which lasts for 8 hours as opposed to Tylenol's 4 hours, and then just the significance of already being half a year old. I was very excited and we took her picture first thing in the morning. Yes, I realize it is crooked, try explaining that to Max who insisted on helping hold the camera.

Max also took a picture unbeknownst to me while I was adjusting Rory and the camera was on the ground. It actually turned out pretty cute so I thought I'd share it.

While 6 months is a big milestone, Rory decided to make it a memorable one. She was the crabbiest I had ever seen from about noon until bedtime. She has developed a cough with her cold and it prevented her from sleeping which made her miserable and so incredibly overtired and crabby. We were and are giving her the nebulizer to try to help, but it didn't do much and she pretty much screamed the rest of the afternoon. It was terrible. Max's nap was cut short because of all the screaming from Rory so he was a crabby little man and I was home all alone with basically two crying/screaming kids. Pretty sure it was a miserable, no good, terrible, bad day.

Thankfully the kids are on the road to sleep recovery. Rory seems to be back to her normal cheerful self after taking a 3 hour nap this morning and Max is currently sleeping for his afternoon nap and after all the fun stuff he did this morning having both aunties Ta-Ta and Andrea over along with Chris to play with - well lets just say I doubt he'll be up anytime soon!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Potty training has been a challenge at daycare. Max has yet to use the potty while he is there. They've also run into an issue where Max will only let his lead teacher take him to the potty, otherwise he pitches a fit. Obviously we don't want that, and at the same time I can't expect the lead teacher to leave and take Max to the potty all the time. So we're working at this. He's been having a lot of "dry" checks which shows he is learning to hold it, which is progress towards our ultimate goal.

He has gone potty for me in the mornings and he loves getting his M&Ms when he goes. So we'll continue on this path in hopes he'll start learning how to recognize when he needs to go and telling us. Like I said, my goal is to have him potty trained by his second birthday which gives us a couple months, I'm not going to expect much more then baby steps.

Rory and Max have both been enjoying the outdoors with this warm weather we've had. Rory will play in her stroller while Max scours the yard. Max has also pulled Rory in the wagon which resulted in Rory slamming her face on the side. I wasn't there, Daddy and Uncle Randy were supervising (and video taping for those that saw it on my Facebook account).
We've taken many walks down our street to visit neighbors, usually with me pushing Rory in the stroller and Max pushing his truck. I love that we live in a rural area and I don't have to be overly cautious about Max on the side of the road. Not that he plays in the street, just that I can let him walk by himself without worrying about a lot of traffic.

Hopefully the weather will remain nice this weekend and we can spend more time outdoors. Bring on spring!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

We only had 5 accidents today and 3 successes! Max was a trooper for most of it and he didn't sit on the potty nearly as long today to get those 3 out. Of course, he also lost some interest in the potty and pitched a couple fits when he was told it was time to sit on the potty. I suppose that is to be expected, and the sticker usually remedied that situation.

The biggest success of the day though is that Max told me he went potty. He had an accident, but as soon as he had it he signed "potty" and also said it to me. So he is starting to really understand the concept. I went shopping and got a bunch more training pants and plastic pants that we'll take to daycare tomorrow. I did a bunch of research and it looks like cloth gets faster results than pull-ups. Of course, that is controversial and depends on who you talk to, but I have no problem with washing dirty underwear and it seems more parents had better results this way. (The bare butt method was actually flaunted the most, but I'm not willing to let him use my carpet as a toilet.) We used cloth diapers for the first 3 months of both Max and Rory's lives so I know what I'm getting myself into with the laundry.

Hopefully being wet and uncomfortable will make him even more dedicated to using the big boy potty. My goal and hope is to have him potty trained by his 2nd birthday, which gives us two months. Hopefully it goes well at daycare and having other kids using the potty will encourage him!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

We are on attempt #4 of potty training and I think we are committed this time. Of course, Max could always throw me another curve ball but I'm feeling pretty confident that we are on the right course and that no illnesses will suddenly appear tomorrow. We had 6 accidents today, 4 of which happened within 15 minutes of coming off the potty, which was really mind boggling, but we also had 2.5 successes so I'll take that and be happy. (I count one as only a half because he peed on the floor in front of his potty.)

I'm still very confused as to what is the normal amount of time to have him sit on his potty. We don't have the problem where Max doesn't like to sit on it, we have the problem that he'll sit there for over an hour before he finally goes. Yes, you heard me right, I had Max sitting on the potty for over an hour. He likes sitting in the bathroom and getting all the attention. If he gets upset, I try to defuse the situation or let him get up and walk around the bathroom for a while and he'd eventually return to sitting down on his own. Two times I eventually made him get up and put his underwear on only to have him have an accident shortly after - so I don't know if I should just have him sit there as long as he is happy or if I am doing it right. Accidents aren't a big deal, I know he is learning and to expect them, I just wish I knew how long he should be sitting for so as to not hinder his progress.

I guess we'll see what tomorrow brings. Any advice?

Friday, March 12, 2010

All this rain has put me in a bit of a depressing mood. So I'm going to try to remedy that. I wasn't planning to post this yet but thought it might help cheer me up.

I've been walking for MS now for four years. It is a very exciting fundraiser for me as one of my best friend's family has been directly affected by MS and I've been fortunate enough to have amazing family and friends support me in my fundraising efforts. The walk is in May and I'm looking forward to not only walking, I'm also looking forward to a new tradition of having both Max and Rory walking with me. Hopefully after many years they too will decide to support this organization or other organizations they feel strongly about!

If you'd like to help me reach my goal of $500 please click the link to go to my fundraising page:

I'll be sending out my usual email in the next week and that will have my mailing address for those of you that would prefer to mail me a check instead of entering in a credit card online. Feel free to email me if you'd like my address.

As most of you know, my goal is to get 50 people to donate $10 to reach my goal. If you would like to donate a different amount, please do, anything will help!

I'm already feeling better, nothing like raising money for a good cause to scare away those rain clouds!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

We had physical therapy for Rory yesterday and I received great news. We have one more appointment scheduled for next month and if all goes well we can be done! Rory is able to move and turn her head just great, now we just need to her to get the proper alignment on her head so that she holds it straight up instead of slightly tilted as witnessed in this picture:

I was trying to get a picture of her pushing her body up as she now locks her arms, but of course with Max around she just wants to watch him and giggle. I did get this cute picture of the two of them in their track suits.

Hopefully we can get Rory to keep her head straight up so that by next month we can be done with therapy. Between daycare and Dusty and I, we'll be working on those exercises. Wish us luck!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Sunday I took the kids to Como Zoo. I don't know why I never thought to go to the zoo while it was cold before, it was really one of the best trips to the zoo I've ever taken. It wasn't crowded and since most of the animals are indoors it was much easier to see and interact with them. Max was able to high five monkeys through the glass, the giraffe's were eating right in front of us and the Lion and Lioness where chasing each other around and batting at each other's faces. Ok, that last one was really just a chance thing and nothing to do with winter, but it was seriously one of more favorite trips to the zoo.

To top it off, we met up with up with Kristen and her boys, Jackson and Tyler, and Auntie Ta-Ta also joined us so it was a very fun day to watch the kids enjoy all the views and catch up with everything that has been going on in our lives. I forgot my camera (I know, I know...) but thankfully Kristen sent me some pictures to use for my blog.

Here are Jackson and Max checking out the waterfall in the rainforest part. It was way to hot and humid for our winter clothed selves but we were able to lose a few layers to enjoy it.

Rory was getting her flirt on with Tyler. Yeah, she's going to be very well rehearsed at getting boys to do whatever she wishes.

Here are the four kiddos. I love that Rory stands out in this sea of boys. From left to right (Max, 22 months; Rory, 5 months; Tyler, 13 months; Jackson, 3 years.

Here's a cute picture of Tara and I with Max and Rory. It was nice to have Tara there to help, I was able to let Max walk around with Tara there to chase after him. Of course, she did decide to help him throw snowballs, that naughty Auntie Ta-Ta.

Of course, we never thought to get a picture of all the adults or even our whole group. I guess we'll just have to schedule another visit to the zoo so we can get that picture taken!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

If you remember, Uncle Randy and Auntie Andrea got Max a blowup swimming pool and also 400 colorful balls that could be used in it during the winter. Unfortunately, getting to the air compressor is just too much work in the winter so we haven't blown up the pool. Dusty and I ordered a Blu-Ray player and this gigantic box came. Max was having fun playing in it and I got this amazing idea...

I've only got 200 of the 400 balls in the box, but it sufficed. Max thinks it is awful fun to jump into and then he shakes his arms and legs all over to knock as many of the balls out that he can. It's pretty cute and not that big of a mess to pick up. Plus, he usually wants to get out and sing the "clean up" song anyway; so I'm not left cleaning them all up myself. I did try putting Rory in there too but as you can tell by the picture she didn't really know what to make of all the balls.

So this was our excitement for Saturday. We also did spend some time outside and made sure to get in some extra long naps. Now I just have to wait for Max to get bored with this new toy and then I'll put it all away.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The New Richmond News newspaper has an article about me winning the Parent of the Month for February. I was a bit misquoted and the print version has the photo captioning me as Parent of the Year which is obviously wrong but I'm going to claim now that it is in print.

Here's the online article if you're interested. The photo isn't captioned there and it is also smaller then the print version.


I guess I'll have to find a way to display both the articles to remind myself that at least for one month (or year if you believe the photo caption in the newspaper) I was the number one parent!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Rory has surprised me so much in the past week that I just had to share our new developments. Mom and Dad are still very special people to her but Max has become her object of affection. On Saturday morning Rory woke up before Max did which is very rare. While I was feeding her a bottle Max woke up. So I took Rory and popped her head in the door while I stood in the hall and said "Hello brother". Max thought this was pretty funny and chuckled but it was dark in his room and I don't think Rory got a good look at Max.

I was holding Rory against my chest and Max wanted to be picked up and held too. So there I am holding both my babies soaking it all in knowing this won't last forever. Rory turned her head and as soon as she realized that Max was right next to her she started squealing and jerking with excitement. By jerking, I literally mean her head is flying all over the place, she is arching her back, and she keeps trying to "touch" Max but her coordination is still a bit off so her hand is flying all over my chest and Max's body. Also, she has the biggest grin I've ever seen on her. Needless to say my enjoyment of holding my babies turned into a slight panic as Rory was squirming out of my arms but I got everyone down on the floor where Rory proceeded to squeal and laugh at Max. It was seriously an amazing moment.

Last night Max and Rory were getting their evening baths and Max started saying his animal noises. (The kid is seriously amazing when it comes to remembering what each animal says.) This isn't anything new as he loves this game but for some reason Rory was really getting a kick out of it so I decided to change it up. I told Max to tell Rory what the cow says and he turned to Rory and Mooed really loudly in her face. She started giggling and squealing instantly. So we continued with all the animals and got giggles out of almost all of them from Rory. Max knew he was doing something funny and kept getting louder at Rory and then looking to see that I laughed too. I was really disappointed that my camera wasn't back from Canon yet so I could record it all. Oh well, just one of those memories that will have to stay locked in my brain forever.

Rory started daycare this week and just like her brother she has fallen instantly in love with everyone there. Of course, they all seem to be wrapped around her little finger so how could she not love it? Today on our drive in to work I put on some music and was singing and Max was "singing" too. (He says mom over and over again in a singsong voice and thinks he is singing to the song, it is our usual morning routine.) Then I hear some chattering and I assumed it was Max just doing his gibberish. After a little while I hear the chattering and the "mom" singing and realize that Rory is attempting to sing with us! Pretty soon we're going to be like the Von Trapp family, well minus about 4 other kids!

I'm so glad we have two kids. It's exhausting and things are definitely not easier with two, but these moments wouldn't have happened if they both weren't there to make them.