Sunday, May 31, 2009

Help your children help themselves

Yesterday we had a Stake Enrichment. I only got to make it for half of it, but what I got to attend was great. The best class I went to was "Help your children help themselves". It felt like I was back in one of my major classes at BYU. I just wished it was longer! She gave us some "homework", so I really wanted to do a series of posts relating to what I learn.

One hand out she gave us was by a bishop in our stake (Mark Ogletree, PhD) who specializes in MFT and Parenting Solutions (among other things). The article was called "These Beggars are Choosers" and was pretty much about the rising generations' entitlement problems and how parents enable children and give them too much. The whole thing was just packed with great stuff. (I promise, I won't normally quote so much, rather I'll talk about what I learned, but I just thought this was too good not to put up!)

The whole article is pretty awesome, and I wish I could find it online to link, but I couldn't. It's in Family Times Volume 3, Issue 12. Here are some examples of the great info in the article:

"Unfortunately, such a couple [independent, responsible and self-sufficient] is now the exception rather than the rule. More common is an experience I had in my counseling office not too long ago. I was visiting with a distraught middle-aged mother. She was worried about how she and her husband were going to pay for their son's rent and living expenses--mind you, their son had just been married the week before. This perplexed mother did not know how she and her husband were going to support two households. Why would this couple be footing the bill for their newly married son and his wife? Then, the mother shared that she was equally concerned that they had to rent a trailer for the newlyweds to transport their gifts and other belongings from TX to UT. Renting the trailer wasn't going to be cheap. Once again, I was bewildered that the parents were paying the way for these newlyweds. Then, the nail in the coffin was when the mother added, "I am also concerned that they will be driving all through the night to travel back to UT, but, they are adults, so I guess I can't say anything." Because I didn't want to offend this mother, I decided not to correct her on the spot. However, if I was more bold, I supposed I could have said something like, 'excuse me...Adults? what do you mean adults? These are grown kids just playing house!" In fact, they are just kids in grown up bodies! Just to set the record straight, an adult doesn't mooch off their parents; an adult is someone who can financially back up their decisions and pay their own way. An adult is someone who can stand, independednt of their parents. Simply put, and adult is someone who can process the consequences of their choices."
He notes some alarming trends such as:
  • teenage boy who doesn't mow the lawn because the dad doesn't think he can make it look nice (so they have a lawn service come)
  • 21 yr old who lives in parents home, eats their food, refuses to go to school, go on a mission, or work. He has retired, and ironically, has never worked a day of his life.
  • Kids who want to work but parents won't let them because there's no need since they're rich.
  • Parents who cover for their children so they don't have to bear the full consewuences of their mistakes.
  • Teens who stay up till 2-3 AM and/or sleep in until noon or later.
"We cannot raise future church leaders, civic leaders, parents, and teachers on a steady diet of cotton candy, video games, and country club memberships. Ask yourself, "What is the hardest thing my child has to do?"

Enabling Parenting Quiz
  1. Do you often rescue your children and bale them out of trouble and responsibility?
  2. Do you practically do everything for your children [chores, projects, scouting, young women's] and don't expect anything in return?
  3. Do you not expect your children to have chores, work, or be respectful at home?
  4. Do you often defend your children, feeling like they can do no wrong?
  5. Do you believe that your children's problems are someone else's fault?
  6. Do your children believe they are entitled to have rights?
  7. Do your children believe that they are entitled to success without any effort?
  8. Are you more concerned with political correctness rather than teaching standards, values, and beliefs?
  9. Do you buy your children something every time you walk into a store?
  10. Do you let your children come and go as they please, having set no limits or boundaries?
  11. Do you let your children sit inside day after day, watching TV, playing Video games, and complaining that there is "nothing to do."
If you said yes to more than 5 of these questions, run as fast as you can...the inmates are running the prison!

"Elder Maxwell has voiced this concern when he said, 'A few of our wonderful youth and young adults in the Church are unstretched. They have almost a free pass. Perks are provided, including cars, complete with fuel and insurance--all paid for by parents who sometimes listen in vain for a few courteous and appreciative words. What is thus taken for granted....Tends to underwrite selfishness and a sense of entitlement.'" (Neal A. Maxwell, BYU Devotional, January 1999)

So what do we need to do as parents?

  1. For those of you who have children living at home, I would give them a daily does of Vitamin "N". Just tell them "No."
  2. Give your children responsibilities. They need to work; they need to have chores, they need to help around the house; they need to pick weeds. Children will never become responsible adults if they do not learn responsibility in their childhood. No child should have a cell phone who is not helping to pay for the monthly fees, or working for the privilege.
  3. Have children pay for some of their activities. If they drive, they can help with gas. if they have a cell phone, they better ante up each month; etc.
  4. Get rid of teenage retirement in your home! If I can't retire until 65, I'll be danged if my kids can do it at 13!
What about those who have adult children? Do the same rules apply?
Absolutely! If you have a 22 year old son or daughter who has retired before you have, then you had better make some changes! I am aware of parents who are paying the entire way for their college-aged children who are fully capable of working their way through school. If you are paying for everything in your adult child's life, please reconsider. Your child is being robbed of the experiences of growth and development.

What I learned about myself:
You know, my parents did a whole lot of things right! My mom was occasionally chided by her contemporaries and professors for having so many kids (7), but she knew she was raising producers and not just moochers! We learned to work hard, set and achieve goals, and to produce results.

I also realized that I do "rescue" Dean more than I should. I know, he's only 18 months. That's part of my problem. I'm an inexperienced mom who's trying to figure out what kids are and aren't capable of for their age. I decided after attending the class, that I needed to stop going to nursery with Dean for the first hour. I didn't go today, and Matt said it was one of Dean's best days in nursery! I'm sure not all weeks will be this great for him, but goodness, the kid needs to learn that I'm not going to be at his disposal 24/7 like I am right now. In 8 short weeks he's going to have to share me with another little being.

I also realized that I should say "no" more often than I do. I need to practice saying things like, "No, Dean, you can't play with the [toothpaste, hair gel, glasses, sink, lotion, CD player, soap, etc.]." Sometimes I don't say no because I want to avoid a fight, a tantrum, or I'm tired of stopping him or redirecting him all day long. However, the better I get at saying no now, the better I'll be at holding boundaries later when they're deliberately pushing the line on more important issues.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

My time as a vegetarian

I haven't felt much inspired to post recently. Spring/summer fever perhaps?

For the sake of getting a new post up, I thought I'd answer a request posed a couple months back in a comment.

What is the story behind my vegetarian years?

Well, when I was about 7 years old I made the solid connection that the chickens running around in Annie Frost's coop were the same thing as the chicken on my dinner plate, I pretty much was grossed out big time. I'm sure I knew that meat came from animals, but I'd never really thought about what that meant exactly.

It wasn't an animal rights issue. I wasn't worried about the poor beasts being slain for my consumption. It was the thought that I was eating the muscles of something that really got to me. *shudder* It still grosses me out a bit. That's why I still have an incredibly hard time eating meat off of bones.

I guess I couldn't be called a true vegetarian because I would eat meals with meat (like lasagna or something), but I'd pick the meat out. I never, ever expected my mom to make me something special. It just didn't work like that at my house. I'd also use chicken or beef broth to reconstitute my TVP meat substitute or eat regular soups but pick out the meat. I'd very occasionally eat thin meats like bacon or lunch meats. Those were easier to forget that they were animal flesh.

My family ate roast and potatoes (and lots of other stuff) every Sunday growing up. My little brother loved to torment me. "Ooooohhhh. Yuuuuum. This cow is de-li-cious!" and then he'd take a big bite of the roast. I think I was supposed to eat a bite of it because I remember often having one or two tiny shreds on my plate, but it wasn't strictly enforced or anything.

What did I eat?
In the way of protein, I ate lots and lots of cheese and beans, peanut butter, eggs, and meat substitutes (though this was more later high school and college). I liked pasta well enough, but it wasn't a main staple for me. I ate lots of salads or wraps with eggs and meat substitutes. Honestly, for lunches I often ate meal replacement things from whatever MLM my parents were in at the time. In Jr. High I had an Amway food bar every day for lunch. In high school I came home for lunch, so I often had quesadillas, burritos, or nachos always accompanied by salad made by my mom. In college I had Nutrition for Life SlenderAge shakes and bars for 1-2 meals a day for sake of ease and time. Now I drink Isagenix shakes maybe every other day for a lunch. The SlenderAge probably tasted the best, but I feel the best after Isagenix.

Why did I start eating meat again?
Well, I started dating Matt my freshman year of college. He asked why I didn't eat meat. When I said I didn't because I didn't like the texture or taste, he asked how long it'd been since I'd really eaten it. When I said about 10 years, he said I ought to try it again and if I didn't like it I could continue not eating it. Sure, that made enough sense. I didn't really try to eat it until he left on his mission and I left for China. I was in a situation where I couldn't be as choosy about my meals, so I'd try some meat here and there. It was fun to write Matt and tell him I'd tried different meats. I started very, very slowly with small amounts and worked my way up to eating a full chicken breast at a meal after a couple years. I still wouldn't touch or prepare meat when we were married three years after we met, though. I only started touching raw meat after I became the cook at a residential treatment center called New Haven in UT in 2004. I cooked for 25-35 people 5 days a week for 2 years. Couldn't avoid using meat in that situation. So, I've gotten pretty good at cooking and eating a variety of meats.

Do I like meat now?
It is nice to have more variety in my meals, but I did not grow to like the taste (or texture) of meat very much. I will eat most meats, though steak and other thick slabs or anything with bones still grosses me out and I avoid them. Ground beef and chicken are probably my most used meats since they're so versatile. I actually still hate the taste of all meats (except salty cured meats like ham and bacon) and won't eat them unless they're well seasoned or marinated and have no "meat flavor" left. I still only eat a very small slice of turkey on Thanksgiving. I don't like roasts unless they're crockpot cooked and shredded. I've tried to work fish into my diet as well, mainly for variety (neither of us like seafood much). The only fishes I will actually use regularly are halibut and tilapia since they're so mild.

If I'd married a vegetarian I am positive I'd have continued with it with no problems or regrets. We still eat "meatless" dinners a couple times a week. I'm very lucky that Matt's not one who needs meat every night. The last couple months I've not really wanted meat, but I force myself to use it occasionally for Matt's sake and so I don't become anemic while pregnant.

That's the long answer. Good job if you actually read the whole thing! Questions? Comments? Concerns? ;oD

Sunday, May 24, 2009

One bright spot in his day

We did manage to get a great picture of him drinking his "leprechaun shake"(as my niece calls it) before church, after his fall (see the post below). (Vanilla isagenix shake with greens mixed in.) As you can see, we just love that stuff. He could be their new poster boy. I've really not had much of an appetite the past few weeks, but this usually hits the spot for my lunch. I've really enjoyed mixing it with milk and frozen strawberries or bananas for a heartier, higher calorie lunch.

An Alexander Day

We all have them. Those terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days. Poor little Dean had one today (and I was pretty close to having one myself). He woke up pretty grouchy, despite his 12 hours of sleep. I woke up very tired because of my 5 hours of sleep.

When I was taking my shower, he dumped out half of my 32 oz. water bottle on the carpet by my bed.

When I was making his lunch for nursery, he climbed onto a chair. He was standing up, hanging onto the back of the chair; he started shaking the back of it, and it tipped over. He and I screamed simultaneously and Matt shot out of bed to see what had happened. His fingers were crushed under the chair. We started examining him, trying to get him to wiggle his fingers to make sure nothing was broken. He was crying pretty hard. We finally saw one hand move all the fingers, but his pinkie wasn't moving on the other hand. It was then that I noticed his mouth was bloody. He cut the inside of his lower lip with his teeth. After we stopped that bleeding, we saw his pinkie move, so all was ok and no medical attention was necessary.

We were only a few minutes late to church, but he was CRAZY during sacrament meeting. Immediately upon entering the chapel overflow he saw a boy a couple months older than him and started slapping at his face and ears. During the meeting he ended up climbing up the stairs to the front twice. He kept running out into the foyer to try and play with the water fountain and tear down the poster board advertising a Testament video night presented by the missionaries. He was all over the place!

It was train and car day in nursery. That's when they only pull out the trains and cars for the kids to play with during the first hour. They're my least favorite of the toys there because they do not hold Dean's attention for more than about 2 minutes! He was very clingy and cried on and off that first hour, despite the fact that I was still in the room. I was feeling pretty exhausted, a little sick, and very overwhelmed at this point, so I had to dab away tears during that hour. I snuck out during lunch/snack time to go to R.S.

At the beginning of Relief Society some friends asked how I was doing and I started BAWLING and just blabbered on about how tired I was and how exhausting of a day it had already been and it was only 12:30! It was a good lesson, though, and a nice break.

Dean was bawling when I got to nursery. He always starts crying when other kids get picked up before him. (Need I remind you that Matt is one of the nursery leaders?? It's not like he's in there with no parent. And I go immediately after R.S.) I started crying again when a friend (who was picking up her child in nursery) told me I could drop him off at her place if I ever needed a break. I told her that was nice, but it didn't seem plausible since he can't even make it through an hour of nursery with Matt in there without crying. So there we were, the two of us cry babies together, and we headed for home. Luckily Matt was driving.

He only took an hour nap though I know he was exhausted. I only took about a half hour nap even though I was exhausted.

He was pretty grouchy and touchy the rest of the day. I could tell his mouth was still hurting him a bit so we gave him some tylenol and I put orajel on his lip. That helped a little.

I was pretty happy when bed time rolled around.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Reveling in the Sweetness

The other day I walked into the kitchen looking for Dean and what did I see? His little hand poking through the cat door in our laundry room. He'd shut himself in there and was happy as could be swinging the door in and out. When he noticed I was there he tried to poke his head through to say hi, but he couldn't quite make it (thank heavens!).

All week he has been begging to go to the "Bop...duckie" (Town Lake Park where there are ducks). We finally went today, and he was very happy. I, on the other hand, was a bit freaked out feeding the massive horde of birds. There is one spot where the majority congregate waiting for food. It would not be so scary if the geese were not there honking and running toward you! After I dispersed most of my bread I hurried away, slightly panicking at the gaggle following me. He kept asking for more duckies, so we found two ducks off on their own and fed them the rest of the bread (well, at least the bread that Dean didn't eat).

He's been obssessed with the letter R recenlty. Everytime he sees one on a book cover or on a sign he goes crazy for it. When I sing the ABC's, he just says "r" over and over until I get to it in the song.

Dean told me "gank gew" (unprompted I might add) all day for just about everything I did for him or when I gave him something he wanted. It was melting my little heart!

He loves, loves, loves playing in the sink. As I was making dinner, he pushed a chair over to the sink and turned on the water. He got a glass cup off the drying rack and filled it himself and drank it quite well! I was impressed with how well he did.

Tonight at bed we were reading books. One of them ends with "good night!" and I quickly slammed the book shut after saying it. He DIED laughing. He kept asking for more so I did it over and over until he was almost to the point of tears. I knew I was riling him up a bit when he should have been winding down, but it was just too hilarious to pass up! Sure enough, I heard him talk to himself for nearly a half an hour. He was quiet for about 15 min. and then I quietly heard humming coming from his room! That only lasted a few minutes and then all was quiet, but it was so sweet to hear.

Sometimes I am just purely amazed at how much I love him, how big he's getting, and how much he learns every day.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Caving in

I have been extremely resistant to joining facebook, mostly because I don't need another time waster and excuse for not doing projects. Plus, blogging has already fulfilled a lot of the connections I wanted to rekindle.

But I decided today that I miss out on lots of local happenings amongst my church friends since I don't have an account. I don't think I'm intentionally left out of the loop. I've just been resistant to joining their most used communication of choice and essentially leave myself out of the loop.

So I created an account.

Sheesh. What is this world coming to?

Pregnancy PMS?

PMS sure is an easy thing to blame emotional craziness on, so I was wondering if I could still use that excuse while I'm 29 weeks pregnant.

I've had one short fuse the past few days.

"Don't do this! Don't do that! Come here now! NOW! You're going into Time Out mister! Get down! No you can't play with that!" (insert an open hand swat on the bum or hand here and there)

It's a miserable way to live. I'm glad I'm normally not like this. I've had moments where I make Dean say a random prayer with me to help me gain composure and be more patient and loving. I am not entirely sure why I'm feeling like this and why it's harder to shake than normal. Usually it only lasts a few minutes or an hour. But a couple days? Bad Celia.

So I'll just blame PMS and abdicate all responsibility. That'll make me feel better. Right?

Okay, ok. I'll take some responsibility and figure out how to get out of this funk. It really is a horrible way to live, especially because I know I'm being self -deceived and a victim.

Update: I am feeling like the storm has finally broken. Dean had a near 3 hour nap after playing in the sun all morning, and that gave me a little break to recuperate I think. I felt much more like myself this afternoon.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Necessity and Excess

I have decided I'm just not a fitness center kinda person. While I'd like to work out at a gym, I honestly can't imagine leaving an infant or toddler in their daycare. I also don't like paying a membership to exercise. So, that leaves jogging and walking and home exercise. Because of this, one thing I really, really want is a good double jogging stroller. I've used our single jogger more than any other stroller. It was a cheap In-Step jogger I got off Craigslist. I didn't absolutely love the stroller itself, but it has worked well enough for $60.

During my stroller research, I have found there are only a handful of double joggers that can accept a car seat on one side. These strollers are not cheap. They run between $500-700 new. I've decided I REALLY want a Bob Revolution Duallie, but it's one of the most expensive with the accessories I want. I've found one here in town on Craigslist for $350. I was going to look at it tomorrow, but I realised that I would have to buy the car seat adapter if I want to use it before the baby is 6 months. That is an additional $90!! Now it's up to $440 and I feel like that's past the point of reasonable and entered the realm of excess.

There isn't a whole lot I need to get for this second baby since we already have a lot of boy stuff from Dean, so a part of me thinks, "What the heck. You don't have to buy all that other stuff. Just get it." But then I think about the crappy economy and what a necessity really is. We've been lucky to avoid job and financial problems thus far, but you never know what will come down the road. It's better to save and be prepared than "live it up" and be caught unaware. I keep trying to tell myself that.

I guess I don't really have a reason for posting this except to voice how frustrating it is to find something I want and would use that goes against my financial conscience.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

A few words

Today I tried to capture some of my favorite words that Dean uses. These are only a few, and most of these are relatively new. It's not great editing, but it's only about 30 seconds. Featured in this video: Snack, thank you, computer, couch, and bye-bye.

Ruffle Skirt: Finally Finished!

(Please don't mind my crazified hair. It got wet at the park.)

It took me long enough! I was so ready to have this skirt done a couple weeks ago. I'm trying to not start new projects until I finish projects I'm already working on. I finally decided I wanted to make some baby stuff, so I needed to get myself into gear and finish this up.

The ruffle proved to be much more of a pain than I imagined. It took me 3 nights of trial and error to finally get something to work. I almost wish I'd just kept it a regular old A-line skirt. The ruffle is supposed to be in a contrasting fabric, but the pink I bought just seemed too...bright make into the whole ruffle. So I just did a "ribbon" band of the pink fabric at the top of the ruffle to help visually differentiate it from the body of the skirt. Overall I'm happy with how it turned out, though I think it would have been better with a full contrasting ruffle. I am definitely happy to be done with it!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mother's day deliciousness

When Matt asked what I wanted for dinner on Mother's day, I told him he could make anything but Mac n' Cheese from a box! I was very happy when he said he was going to make habichuelas con arroz y tostones. It's Puertorican/Dominican red bean and rice dish with smashed and fried plantains on the side. He had it often on his mission in Philadelphia (he was Spanish speaking and there were many Puertoricans and Domincans there). When we lived in UT he made habichuelas every so often, but I don't think he's made it here in TX. I don't generally make it because he makes it much better than I do. I haven't felt much like eating meat recently, so this really hit the spot.

Boy was it good!!! I'd never had the tostones; they were good despite the fact that the plantain was slightly under ripe. (We'd never bought one, so we didn't quite know what to look for. Now we know.)

Here's a picture of Matt's plate (He couldn't finish it all. We both had eyes bigger than our stomachs!) It really was tasty and I've eaten it for lunch the last two days.

Church was good. Dean was mostly good during Sacrament meeting, but at one point he kept trying to bite my leg, so Matt took him out. That meant I got to actually listen to the speakers! He integrated so nicely in nursery I only stayed about 15 min. and snuck out to sunday school. I later found out that while he didn't notice I'd left immediately, he clung to Matt and stopped playing like he had been when he realised I was gone. Baby steps. I got to stay for all of Relief Society, so I felt like I almost had a full 3 hours of church! It was a good Mother's day.

Belly Beautiful: 28 weeks

Well, here's the monthly update. Here are my 28 week comparison photos. At church on Sunday I was told I look as though I have a basketball stuffed up my shirt. I would have to agree! haha.

As you can see, my curly hair STILL looks like junk here in TX despite the fact that I've tried almost every "anti frizz" "curly hair" concoction. It makes me very sad. Give me my dry heat! I'm done with humidity.

Pictured left: 2007

Pictured right: 2009

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Guilty as charged

Ok. I wasn't actually charged. I just know I'm guilty of having perfectly good things to blog about and choosing to do different things all together. So, this post is merely to tell myself that life is still moving forward even if I'm not religiously blogging about it. I know, catch up posts are never as good as "in the moment" posts. Too much stuff. Too disjointed. Whatever though.

We had been renting out an electric piano we are keeping for my in-law's and it was returned to us last week. After a year of renting they decided they needed to make a commitment and buy something if their son was going to continue. We pushed down our dresser and set it up in our bedroom so I can have something quiet enough to practice on when Dean is sleeping. It is not a piano, nor does it feel like a piano despite the pedals and weighted keys, but does allow me to practice when I could not otherwise. I am grateful to have it back. I don't know if we'll have room for it when I set the baby up in there, but maybe, just maybe, I will be able to pull something together for my spring recital. It is the first time I'm attempting to learn and perform an entirely new to me piece for a solo performance since...well, I guess since the Miss Navajo County pageant way back in 1999. Brahms' Hungarian Dance no. 5. The song is not extremely difficult except that it has a HUGE left hand range that jumps back and forth with chords that make my hand feel too little. I just have to work on my hand strength and extension and musicality a bit. We'll see if I can pull it together in a month...

It has been hot and oppressively humid (my mom said it was 85% humidity or something) here this week, and I have not liked it one bit. I have gone to bed feeling very sticky almost every night this week. Yesterday the heat broke, we had our windows open and fans blowing, and our temperature in the house was a nice 71*. So much nicer. The temp. started to rise again today, so when it really heats up again this week, I'll have to break out sprinklers or go to a sprinkler park or something. I wish I wasn't so paranoid of playing in our big yard. Darned fire ants. It will be quite nice when the pool opens again on May 23rd. I have a feeling many of our mornings will be spent there instead of the park.

Dean's obsession with the park has been rekindled. He begs every day to go, and regardless of how long we stay, he always wants "mo bahk" or "mo bahp"(more park). He's getting very good at climbing the fake rock wall up to the slides by himself. He won't slide by himself, so if I slide down with him, I am very careful to keep his feet inside mine so we don't hurt his foot again.

I got a whole slew of books to read from my friend Laura. I'm nearly finished with Emily Climbs, and I just got it on Thursday night.

I attempted to work on my unfinished skirt on Friday. I made a little progress, but as I was trying to gather the bottom ruffle, the basting stitches busted so I will have to figure out a different method to gather it. It's just way too much ruffle to pull through the thread I have.

Our garden's starting to look like a garden with everything popping up. We've had tons of rain this week, so that's been helpful. I really hope it does well this year since we got it planted much earlier than the last two years. We have planted:
  • 1/2 row watermelons (though I don't have much hope for them)
  • 1/2 row cantaloupe
  • full row green beans
  • pickler and straight eight cucumbers
  • 4 tomato plants (I had only planned on two. The first two I got looked like they froze since we had a freakish cold wave in April. I pulled them up and left them on the side of the garden with their root ball still attached. My friend Erin noticed that they were alive and growing on Friday! So I replanted them along side the two replacement plants.)
  • 2 bell pepper plants
  • 1 jalapeno plant
  • 1/2 row of yellow squash
  • 1/2 row of zucchini
  • 3 planter boxes with strawberry plants (I think we have about 7 plants that made it through the cold spell)

I had my 28 week check up on Friday and things are looking on track as usual. Gained another 5 lbs. this month, so I'm now up to 147 with a total weight gain to date of 16 lbs. I think by this point I'd gained about 20 with Dean and continued to gain about a lb. a week thereafter. We'll see how this one compares. It was the 1 hour glucose visit, so I had Matt work from home so he could stay with Dean. I can't imagine trying to entertain him for over an hour at my doctor's office. It was a pleasant hour by myself and I spent most of it reading. I'm leaning toward Monday July 27th for my c-section. Four days before Matt's birthday. One week before the due date. We're having a hard time coming up with names we both like.

Matt and I went on our anniversary date last night. Nothing too fancy. Dinner and a movie. (Our annual Olive Garden visit- purely for the salad dressing on my end since I'm not terribly impressed with their entrees, but Matt likes their food better than I do- and X-men: Wolverine.) It's something we never really do, so that was nice. The movie was good and entertaining. I really do like that Dean goes to bed early enough that we could put him down before we left. Nice to not have to mess with a sitter trying to do it. The girl who baby sat for us was our 12 year old neighbor (or R.S. Pres's daughter) and she did it for free! The missionaries challenged their family to do service for 3 people in our neighborhood, so she chose this as one of her opportunities. Cool.

So, all-in-all it was a good week. It went by quickly and it was nice to have a low-key week after our medical craziness last week. However, Matt has had a rash for the last 3 days, and the doctor thinks he's allergic to the antibiotics (sulfa).

The end.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Well, we didn't die from (or even contract) the Mexican swine flu, so I celebrated by making a delicious Mexican meal for a nice Cinco de Mayo dinner tonight. I was trying to decide why we even "celebrate" cinco de mayo here and what significance the date even holds in Mexico, but I gave up guessing and just cooked instead!

I wish I'd taken a picture, but I was way too hungry by the end so I just ate it instead. So, here's what I made (visualize with me if you will):
  • homemade flour tortillas
  • homemade quacamole
  • homemade pico de gallo
  • homemade horchata (seriously, I was so happy with how this turned out! It's been a long time since I've had it. yuuuum.)
  • tried a new homemade seasoning recipe mix for taco meat
  • cannery refried beans
  • lettuce, sour cream, olives, cotija cheese (fresh Mexican cheese that's nice and salty)
Dean even ate more of his little bean burrito than normal, even with the unusual (for him) additions of the pico, sour cream, and cotija cheese (though I bribed about 4-5 bites out of him by telling him he could have olives for his fingers. he LOVES olives, especially sucking them off his fingers. He's not nearly as fond of broken olives.)

I am stuffed!

Oh, and I made our anniversary dinner last night successfully! When Matt came into the kitchen he said it was one of the best smelling meals I've ever made. And when it was all done he said it was delicious and successful! Now, if you know him well, two compliments at one dinner is not common! So I was happy. We had:
  • Alice Spring Chicken (honey mustard marinade, bacon, mushrooms and topped with rich we might have this once or twice a year! But boy is it tasty.)
  • Corn on the cob (very, very rare here. we eat corn maybe less than 5 times a year, including canned corn. I don't really consider it a vegetable since it's not green, so I haven't figured out how to work it in. Plus, the few times I've tried to give it to Dean he's been extremely unreceptive.)
  • Baked Potatoes
The chicken was a little involved, so I kept the sides simple. I'll try and post all (or at least some of) the recipes on my food blog sometime soon.

We're all feeling much better here. Dean and I have gotten over our stomach bugs and Matt can put on shoes again! The swelling is completely gone now and his blister just scabbed over after he popped it on Sunday night. Gross I know, but I figured I'd give an update.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

[Cr/H]appy 6th Anniversary

Well, last year I'd hoped we'd be in Scotland today for our "every other year anniversary trip". We're not in Scotland since I'm 6 mo. pregnant. It feels like we're in Miseryland though. Ok, not really Miseryland. Just plain sick.

Dean didn't throw up at all yesterday and I probably gave him too many hugs and kisses (silly mommy!), so here I am puking and nauseous today. No church for us. We settled for listening to a conference talk online.

Stomach Flu + pregnant and starving+ full time mom + anniversary= no fun.

Dean and Matt are on the mend, so that's good. Dean's been able to keep down food today. The swelling in Matt's foot is going down. He still can't put on his shoes, though, because of the horrible blister where the bite is.

We canceled our anniversary date last night and there's no way I'll be able to cook/eat our anniversary dinner tonight. Ah well. Such is life. At least it's not giardia in Guatemala like our 2nd anniversary! That was worse, I must say.

Weird to think we've lived here in TX in this house for half of our married lives! I hear my little guy waking up from a nap. Duty calls even if I don't feel like answering!

Friday, May 01, 2009

Can't...stop...(just yet at least)

I have always gone through cycles of enjoyment and fulfillment. I'll hit something with all my energy and then in weeks, months or years I'll get bored and feel the need to conquor/learn something else. When I feel sufficient time has passed, I'll often return to my old hobbies and start cycles all over.

Last year scrapping was one of my hobbies. Then I splurged and bought lots of paper and shortly after I lost interest and switched to sewing. I've been sewing quite a bit (for one who had no previous knowledge of sewing) since Christmas. Books, bags, wrap blankets, clothing, etc. Recently I splurged on materials for skirts I wanted to make. I got to the last one, nearly finished, and have felt unmotivated the past few weeks to complete it. I'm a little worried I won't find enough motivation to finish it in time to wear it this pregnancy!!!

All I've wanted to do recently is read. Matt savors his books and reads only a little every night to stretch them out. Most of my life I've devoured books, finishing them in a day or two, regardless of length, if I got caught up in them. I have tried to switch to Matt's system after having Dean since it's not really practical to read all day long with a toddler running around needing attention. I did really well stretching out the Anne of Green Gables series. Then this week I read Fablehaven in 2 days (the first book, the rest were all checked out) and Emily of New Moon in about 3 days I think. I couldn't put them down in my "spare moments" (i.e. Dean's naps and evenings after dinner was cooked and at least mostly cleaned up). TV and the computer haven't held much interest for me. Much of the housework suffered because of it. Not horribly. Just enough for me to notice really.

I just finished Emily of New Moon. Maybe I can finally convince myself to finish that skirt that's been haunting my sewing table.

Or maybe I'll just go check out the other books in the two series tomorrow (if they're in) and continue to take a little break from life. Sometimes little breaks are nice. Even if they're not productive.

Let's hope it's not the swine flu!

After a nice 2 hour nap Dean woke up scream-crying which fairly unusual these days. When I opened his door I smelled the rancid puke smell. He and his crib were completely covered. When I got to him he threw up a little more in my hands. I took off his shirt and Matt (who had worked from home because of his foot) filled up a bath. After we took care of him I tossed everything from his crib, stuffed animals and all, in the wash.

I just gave him some juice and started typing this and he threw up juice all over our computer room floor. Other than throwing up, he seems normal. Before we put him in the bath his temp was 98*. After he threw up this second time it was 99*. Hope it doesn't get higher.

As of last night there was only one confirmed case of swine flu in collin county according to the news. Lets hope they weren't at the ER two nights ago when we took Dean!!!!!!

I think we may have to cancel our anniversary date tomorrow night. I guess we'll see...