Sunday, March 29, 2009

Springtime in Chicago

ALL winter, and I mean ALL winter, Trevor (and Blake somewhat) has been DYING to make a snowman. Every time it snowed, it wasn't the right kind of snow (to light, or too icy) or we waited too long and then the snow wouldn't stick together!! So he was disappointed over and over again. He had a pile of snowman accessories waiting: a scarf that grandma provided, some buttons for eyes, and a carrot that is by now old and shriveled (but it's the one he wants for his snowman's nose, so don't throw it out!).

About the beginning of March, the last lingering snow melted and so did the hopes of a snowman for this winter. Trevor was upset, but got over it eventually. He acknowledged the fact that he would not build a snowman this winter. At the time, I put the emphasis on the word "this". I told him that next winter we would build one. What do I know....

Today, 9 days into spring, he got to build his snowman. Boy is he thrilled!!!

As for me, I'm not a big fan of "Springtime" in Chicago. This baby is supposed to be born in SPRING ... no more snow!!!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Photo Update

Today I downloaded about 200 photos from the camera to the computer. And of course, this means that none of these have been posted to the blog. So, without further delay, a photo update on what we've been doing lately!

Our trip to Michigan, about a month ago. Just a few shots of the boys and their friends being... just boys!

About 2 weeks ago, we headed downtown to the Children's Museum at Navy Pier. The kids love the place and I love how much they love it.

Climing through the nets
Blake the plumber

Yesterday was a big day around here.... We bought our new minivan. This was required before Baby Girl's arrival, so I'm glad to have it off the to do list!!!
The boys are excited to have their own seats, WAY in the back, where (they realized) Mommy can't reach them to stop them being bad! Oh no!

The boys helped me this morning in getting the nursery almost ready for Baby Girl. They helped put together the bassinet, and it was very interesting. Trevor is tied to the directions, and finds the pieces that you need based on looking at the directions. Blake looks at the final picture, and treats it just like a puzzle, he finds the pieces he needs to make it work... no directions needed! It was fun to see their different approaches, and to see how excited they were to make the bed for the baby!

Oh, and finally, for those who care, a pregnant Mommy photo. This was taken about 2 weeks ago, on March 5th, at almost 33 weeks pregnant.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

I'll always eat lunch with you Mommy!

My baby (1 of them) just keeps growing up!

Ages ago, say November, Trevor's teacher's suggested that it might be good for him to stay 1 (or more) days a week for lunch and into the early afternoon. Not because there are any problems, but just to let him expand his horizon's a little more. To help him get more comfortable being away for longer, to let him experience the different activities they do in the afternoon, to let him interact with the kindergarten kids that come in the afternoon rather than always sticking with his 1 or 2 best buddies (who are a year younger than him), etc.

When I mentioned this idea, in passing, to say that he was not in favor of it, would be an understatement. The kid hates change (at least initially!). He was STRONGLY opposed to it for a LONG time. In fact, up until a few weeks ago, he would randomly remind me that he is NOT staying at school for lunch ANY time soon (as in, not even next year in Kindergarten! - good thing we have 1/2 day K here!).

So, Tuesday I picked him up from school. I don't even remember how the conversation started, but all of a sudden, he was talking about lunch at school and saying that he wanted to stay for lunch sometime. So, casually (oh, so casually!), I said, "Well you can stay tomorrow for lunch if you want." Bang, done, sold! He was SO excited!!! All afternoon and evening, that's all he talked about. He woke up early on Wednesday, because "We hafta make my lunch Mommy!". He was raring to go! We even got to school early!

And so, he stayed. He ate lunch there (peanut butter sandwich, brownie, and chocolate milk). Then they went outside, and he did lots of work that he doesn't usually get to do. He was slightly concerned, to make sure that I picked him up on time (at 2 pm). After all, Tom and Jerry starts at 2 pm, and he knows it, and he told his teachers!! And so, just like that, another milestone is reached. So, he'll be staying at school every Wednesday for lunch and into the afternoon. It works well as Blake is not there that day anyway, it doesn't conflict with my work schedule (no transportation issues), and Blake and I get some good time together to do things (which is rare!).

The icing on the cake was the work that he brought home. Sometimes, he brings home pictures and drawings and random art projects that he has made. Other times he brings home pages with writing or counting practice that he has done. No matter what it is, becuase it's a Montessori school, I know it is the work that he chose to do that day, nothing that he was 'forced' to do, or that everyone did. I like knowing that. On Wednesday, after being at school for 5 hours, he came home with Math papers. On 4 seperate sheets of paper, he completed all his math facts for numbers 1 through 4. So he added 1 + each number (0-9); 2 + each number; 3 + each number; and 4 + each number. And he got ALL the facts right (with the small issue of writing 12 and 13 backwards as 21 and 31). And, if you ask him any of these facts (what's 3+6?), he'll find something to count (legos, dinosaurs, fingers) and tell you. This kid, knows and LIKES his math!!!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Baby Pool

I found the COOLEST site on the web today.... an online baby pool! So, click the big link on the right and enter your guess for when you think our baby girl will be born, and her stats. She is due on April 26.

Oh and just for reference (if you care)....

Trevor was born on his due date, weighed 6 pounds 13 ounces, was 20 inches long, and was born at 1:42 am.

Blake was 4 days early, weighed 7 pounds 11 ounces, was 19 3/4 inches long, and was born at 4:18 am.

Get your votes in early. I'll have a fun prize for the winner!!!

Baby Update

Well, I saw the midwife today. Gawd, I love her. The last few visits I've seen the OB (male) and he's not bad.... but he's not her!!!

She came in, and hugged me, like a long lost friend and told me she'd missed me, and that I should make all my appointments with her, not him! Then she proceeded to tell me how great I looked (not too small! yay) and told me that all my numbers look great. I've gained 25 pounds, my blood pressure is great (124/68) and I'm measuring right on 34 weeks! Yay!! She gave me all the registration paperwork for the hospital, commiserated on my tailbone pain and heartburn, and generally made me feel all warm and fuzzy!

So everything is going well. My tailbone still hurts like a son of a b!tch... but there's not much to be done about that. Baby girl is just sitting SO low. So between that and my sore hips, I'm seeing the chiropractor twice a week and that helps me feel better in general, but doesn't get rid of the pain altogether. Oh well, he's a great guy and I do feel better after seeing him, so I'll keep going. I'm queen of heartburn this time around... more so that I remember with either of the boys. I've been taking the 24-hour pill, Prilosec, which definetly helps and I have few issues with the hb now. So, we'll keep taking that until she arrives.

On the note of arrival, I'm counting down the days until I'm full term (3 weeks from Sunday!), and frankly after that, she's welcome to arrive anytime. Officially, there's 6 weeks and 2 days left to the pregnancy, but I'm hoping for a little less.

Meanwhile, I've got the nursery just about ready. No major work was required, but lots of little things. I sorted through all the boys old clothes (newborn-2T) and saved what was neutral enough, gave some to friends with baby boys, took some to the resale store, and put the rest in the basement "garage sale" pile. So, a billion boxes of clothes are out of the room, and it looks much better! Of course, I've been buying lots of pink (and other colors) for the little girl as I find them on sale/clearance, so there's a good stack of 3 boxes of clothes in various sizes for her now!! I also got rid of Trevor's old toddler bed (listed it on freecycle and it was gone in 24 hours!), so the room feels much bigger. Now I just have to set up the bassinet, get hubby to finish the closet rods (that I've been waiting for for 3 years!), and I think we'll be done!

Of course, there's still painting to be done... Yes that's right, painting. 5 years ago, while I was pregnant with T, hubby started painting a mural in the nursery. The mural is all the Alice in Wonderland characters. Well, it was probably about 50% done when T was born. By the time B inhabited the room it was probably 75% done. It's now about 95% done... there's just a small part to be finished on one character. Since the day I found out I was pregnant this time around I've told hubby that he HAS to have that mural finished by the end of March. I wonder if he will?!?!?!? I'm trying not to be a nag, but I really would like it finished (if for no other reason, that to get all the painting supplies out of her closet!!!!!).

So that's the udpate with baby girl. Her first name is all picked out, but we're still struggling with a middle name. Her first name has been picked out since I was pregnant with Trevor (or before). The original middle name I had picked now seems to common. Why? Because her brother's have middle names like Phineas and Huntington. So... I'm looking for some unusual middle name suggestions..... any ideas??

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Swimming Class Part Deux....

So Tuesday was swimming class #2. I can't wait for the swim class where I get to go, but for now I keep missing them due to work.

Yet again, Blake complained from the beginning about not wanting to go. Of courese, Daddy pointed out to him that he wouldn't get to play the Wii. So, Blake retaliated with, if I go in then I get Wii and ice cream. Ah, my little negotiator.... but he went in!!

So there are 5 kids in the class. And they are all in the shallow end, wearing floaties, standing on a ledge so they are up to their "nickles" in the water. While the teacher was busy with another kid, Blake stepped off the ledge and was in over his head sputtering. So, T (being the good big brother) reached over and pulled him back on to the ledge (using the floaty as a handle). Good job T. Only then, it became a game! T would go off the ledge dog-paddle a little and B would pull him back. Of course, only Daddy saw this, the teacher was busy!!!

At some point they played the hokey pokey. So they were practicing putting their hands in, and
their faces in, and blowing bubbles. But of course, Blake just watched.

Then the teacher had them go around the edge of pool, holding on to edge with their hands, inching their way along. B prefered to do this with 1 arm and 1 hand to keep himself up out of water more. He's still a little nervous!! They made their way like this to the deep end, climbed out, shivered on the side, then jumped in. They're supposed to jump in one at a time to the teacher. Well, B 'hops' in, almost as if the teacher is pulling him, meanwhile T jumps as far out as he can go!

So, B is still a little hesitant, but a huge leap of progress from last week. Hopefully, we'll have continued success, and I get to go watch in 2 weeks! Yay!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Babies and Potties and other Updates

Yikes, it's been a long time since I've written anything. I can't think of any major reasons why, but at the same time, I can't think of many major things that have been going on.... at least, beyond the obvious...

Potty Training...
Blake is still putting up with being forced not to be a lazy little boy. He would probably wear a diaper if we let him, but he's realized that there's no option on this front and that we expect him to wear underwear, AND keep it dry!

He can do it, he's done it for 3-4 days at a time. And then he has a random accident late in the day, for absolutely NO reason. There's no logic to it, and a lot of the time, I swear it's intentional. We're at the point now, that if he has an accident, I just tell him to go get dry undies, and we move on with our day.... nothing more. I think the lack of attention is a key.

He's been dry for the last few days with no issues, and today was pushing me out of the bathroom telling me he didn't need me there. He's also standing up to go pee, and pooping on the potty 9 times out of 10. So... we're almost there. For the most part, he'll stay dry, and go potty when I tell him to, but still won't initiate it himself. Oh well...

Dancing Queen....

While I have claimed both here and IRL that "I love being pregnant"... I'm about done with it this time around!!! I'm at that point of discomfort, where sleep is not happening very much, and it's ticking me off. I'm someone who LOVES my sleep at the best of times, even when not preggo, and especially when pregnant. So messing with my sleep is NOT a good thing. I'm able to fall asleep, but I'm not comfortable for long, and by morning my back is a wreck and I'm cranky and feel like I didn't get much if any sleep. I think I will be relocating to the couch and/or lazy-boy soon.

On top of that, this kid has decided to sit in a very strange position (at least I assume it's how she's positioned) and my tailbone is KILLLING ME!!! I can't sit for long without getting a major butt-ache.... sorry TMI!!! I've never had pain like this from either of my other pregnancies, and I'm not enjoying it. Driving to work seems to be too far half the time, and causes my tailbone to hurt. So, I've been seeing the chiro twice a week to help with the pain. While he's awesome, and getting adjusted always feels good, it's not stopping the pain completely, just slowing it down a little, only for it to come back by the end of the day.

So, I'm counting down the weeks - 4 1/2 - until this kid is full term and it wouldn't be bad for her to be born. That would be anytime after April 6th. A month from Friday... let's go!!!

Michigan and Paint....

The only other update I can think of is that a few weekends ago, I took the boys up to Michigan to visit friends of ours who moved last fall. E has two boys who are each about 6 months younger than T & B, and had a baby girl in November. The 4 boys were THRILLED to see each other and played wonderfully all weekend. It was great to meet Baby A and to see E for a whole weekend. I miss her dearly, and it was good to be able to sit and catch up and chat and vent, and everything else!!

And while we were gone, my darling husband, painted the family room and kitchen! They badly needed new paint, between the dents and dings from the kids, and the fact that they were still painted with contractor-grade white paint. I'd post pictures, but well, it's still white. Yes, its new fresh bright semi-gloss white, but it's still white!!! Ah, my darling husband... he HATES color on walls... And while I don't care for the white, I choose my battles, and I have plans for art for the walls and possibly some tapestry going up too. So I'll get my color someway, somehow. At least the dents, dings and scraches are gone. And now the walls are washable, so when the kids decide to color on them, they can then remove those marks themselves, quite easily!!!

Finally... on the note of the economy, I'm sitting here listening to John Stewart on Comedy Central, and I just can't help but share this lovely quote with all of you: " If I'd listened to CNBC's advice, I'd have a million dollars today... provided I'd started with a hundred million!"


Yesterday brought the start of swimming classes for both Trevor and Blake. As long as it didn't go like the last set of swim classes, it would pretty much be a success.

Last time Trevor took swim classes, was about 2 years ago. It was the third level of swim classes after he and I completed two Mommy and Me classes where I was in the water with him. This class was to be kids only, with the parents right by the side of the pool. Parents weren't in the water, but they were close so kids would be comfortable. Due to my work schedule, the plan was that Daddy would go with the T, and be there. Trev knew all of this, and agreed to it. For the first 6 weeks, he was pretty good with it. He got in the water, did what the teachers asked, and let them hold him and help him. Week 7, proved to be the end of all that. For some reason, he just froze and REFUSED to do anything. He wouldn't get changed, wouldn't go in the water, wouldn't put on his suit, etc. And there wasn't ANYTHING that Daddy could do. So they came home, and he never went back again... and that was the last swim class he took.

Since then, he's started preschool which I think had a large impact. He's learned to interact with teachers and other adults with out me always being present. He's played t-ball last year, which was a great success, but I fully worried that he would quit and refuse to deal with the coach. Obviously, I was wrong and he's grown up quite a bit....

Regardless, when the topic of swimming classes came up again - at Trevor's request - I was nervous. We've been talking on and off about them and the expectations for a while. We've been talking about who will take him (Daddy most of the time), what is expected of him (participation), and that he will be in the water with the teacher without either of us. And then of course, there's the Blake factor. Blake was always interested in the swim class conversations that T and I would have, and he claimed to want to take classes too. Last week we went to a new place (for various reasons), we checked it out, they agreed to all terms and conditions (and signed their lives away on waivers!), so I signed them up. So the question remained, how would things pan out for EACH of them.

So yesterday afternoon, I went to work, and Daddy took them both to class. They got dressed here before leaving, and apparently Blake started claiming "I don't wanna go in the water!". This continued for the car ride up to the pool, and into the place. Trevor, meanwhile, had no issues. Meanwhile, Trev was all about being good and doing what he was supposed to, so that he could come home and play the Wii that night!! (ah, what motivation will do for ya!).

So, Trev went in the water, did what the teachers asked, and was a good kid. Blake, sat on the edge of the pool in a puddle, and did nothing. Trev wore a floaty (as did all the kids), floated on his back, blew bubbles, jumped in the deep part, and practiced kicking while holding on to the edge. Blake... sat in a puddle.

On the high side, Blake did sit right by the pool, and watch, and was good. He just didn't go in. So maybe next week he'll go in. We've talked about it already, and set the expectation that he is to go in. So we'll see. And Trevor is being supportive and telling B, that it was fun and the teacher was nice, so I'm hoping that will help.

I guess 1 out of 2 ain't bad. And at least he didn't have a total fit or meltdown.... which is major progress for Blake and teachers/adults he doesn't know. He is only about 6 months older than Trevor was when he refused to be in the class 2 years ago. So what more can I expect....