"Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both." ~ Benjamin Franklin

Not me, I hate snakes

>> Sunday, December 31, 2006

Ever think you have a bad job....this guy has you beat.

I really, really don't like snakes. Something about having to sleep on the ground in Georgia, Texas, and Kansas (don't forget the Mohave, the Arabian Desert and the Coronado National Forest in Arizona). Before setting up camp, we used to drive around the site and bang on the door and make as much noise as we could get away with. One of the Sergeant's Major jobs is to make sure we don't break light and noise discipline, so it was great when the new smaj started helping us. All it took was him seeing us do it and watching the wiggles in the grass. You are focused on the strangest things when you know that you have to sleep on the ground. Odd.

It was several years after I left the Army before I started camping again. Even now, it's hard to break old habits. Though, it is completely different when you can sit around a fire, eat cooked food, and don't have to keep all of your supplies with you at all times. And no one shoots at you, very important that.


Daddy Time

>> Saturday, December 30, 2006

Mommy is helping Merit with BabyGirls's sweet 16 celebration tonight. It's just me and two very tired little girls. And Toby, the 100lbs runt of a Saint Bernard....mustn't forget him. I might hurt his feelings. He would try to hide it, but I know he would be huring deep down inside. The four of us are hanging out on the couch watching a movie.

We just got back from the in-laws where the C-Monster was properly swooned over and B-Bear got to run and run, hop and hop, and play dress-up with her cousins.

Speaking of B-Bear, she was ready today. Mommy and Daddy weren't though. She got up dry; which happens with some frequency, especially when we need to go somewhere. We spent some uneventful time on the potty before showering. Nutten. B-Bear really wanted to wear her big-girl panties and even put them on (twice) correctly, by herself. Since it is an hour and a half drive to the in-laws we put her in her pull-ups and took off.

Big mistake.


Bigger than big.

We are such lousy parents.

No, not putting her in the Dora. That's not it, our big mistake is that we didn't pack a potty seat; not the easy carry version that can be placed over any commode, and not the self-contained unit that we could pull over and have her use it in the privacy and luxury of a highway ditch. This is important, remember that thought.

Bad parents.

Thirty minutes from our destination brings cries of "Poopy Mommy...poopy!" "Pee-pee Daddy!" Cries and tears follow. Whining and tears are so infrequent from her that we know she is serious. I finally find a place to pull over. Silly me, I thought it was to change her...but NOOOOOOO, she was still dry and still letting us know about the impending disaster.

We drive - destination gas-station potty room. This particular small-town Iowa watering hole had a very clean restroom. Several people milling about got to listen to B-Bear's screams as I held her over the commode. She was not happy - NOT HAPPY. She was still dry and did not want to use that particular potty. I packed her up after five minutes because I was afraid that someone would call the cops. She was screaming, crying, pleading and holding on to me for dear life. But she wasn't using the seat for its intended purpose. Bad Daddy, no potty seat means no potty. B-Bear was prepared on the exact day that we need to drive long distances. Bad parents.

This does follow the pattern she has set for herself. She just started eating solid foods one day, out of the blue and on her terms. She didn't spend long in the teeter-totter stumble phase, just seemed to go from crawl to walk (run) one day, just not when we tried to get her to do it. Now this, she is ready for the big girl panties on her terms.

Well, only if we haven't set it back by saying that it was alright that she went in her Dora today. She couldn't hold it all the way there. She was so brave and strong trying though.

We just weren't ready.


Not Diggin' This

>> Friday, December 29, 2006

New Blogger, that is. I switched over and to make changes on the page I had to also upgrade my template. Which is now completely f'ed up. All the nice headings Doug had disappeared. I was able to pull all my faves into a category- but now they don't open in a new window. And the widgets have me completely confused. How can I make changes to the damn linklist? I thought this was supposed to be easier. It's not.

I have to visit the recycling center today. I tried to return an Explorer full of cans and bottles on Wednesday but the parking lot was full of cars and trucks waiting their turn. Waiting was not an option with the girls.

Tomorrow is our final family gathering. I need to buy my dad a gift; probably one that he can share with his wife. I know my sister got him a restaurant gift certificate; I'll probably take the same route.

Tomorrow night I'll be helping with Baby Girl's Sweet 16 party. I know that it's tomorrow and I know where- kind of. I still haven't been informed of the time. In preparation for that, and since Caelan is still refusing a bottle I thought we would try baby cereal mixed with breast milk and served on a spoon. Strike two. Or strike 3 if you count that she refuses a pacifier- even if I put sugar on it. No foolin' her. I'm out. Game called for limited participation.


Mommy Time

>> Thursday, December 28, 2006

Caelan is napping and Brenna is in her room probably not napping. I should have an hour in which to do things that A) I want to do or B) I need to do without "help" from Brenna. I have no idea how much will actually get accomplished.

So, has anyone else almost chucked Blogger over for another blog provider during the change-over? I almost went to Type Pad. Unfortunately Type Pad is not free. And I'm pretty frugal when it comes to this blogging stuff. I really don't want to pay for what I can get for free. Ya hear that, Type Pad... Why buy the milk, ya know?

I want to make changes to the template but am not sure how to go about it. I want to have the blog set up on one side for my stuff and the other side for Doug's. I'm not seeing any templates that have two sides so I suppose I will have to make one. If Meritt Can do it I suppose I can figure it out. Right? (I hear crickets chirping.) Yeah, I'm not sure I can do it either. So if things look really bad or if we completely disappear over the next few weeks you know that I really screwed something up.


I'm In!

>> Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Getting myself switched to new Blogger sucked. Oh, I got Doug switched OK, it was my account that was getting blocked at every turn. I was ready to tell Blogger where to put their "new" stuff and take myself over to Typepad. Still not sure that I won't.

For all of you DOug fans out there I did notice that he is working on a couple of posts. Not that I am promising anything but there are a couple of drafts with highly political overtones- just in case you've been missing what this blog was built on.


The Day After

>> Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Ahhh... The day after Christmas. So much to clean. So many boxes to crush, so much garbage to go out. Although comparing our garbage to our neighbors it would seem that we had a far more humble Christmas. We all received plenty of goodies but some people just do so much more than we do. But, as I've said many times (and you can probably say it with me), we're not gifty people.

Caelan is napping and I put Brenna in her bed to do the same thing. I know she isn't napping as I heard the CD change but she is being quiet and staying in her room which is all I really require. Just a bit of mommy time.

Blogger keeps telling me to change to Beta, which isn't Beta anymore but "New Blogger". As Doug set up this account I need to have him change it and make me the head honcho of these parts. I could probably do it- I think I know his password. *hehe*

I'll put up Christmas photos later. So much to do now... I'm just procrastinating because I'm not really sure where to begin!


Merry Christmas! Don't Sell Your Pampers Stock

>> Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas to everyone who has the time or inclination to be out in cyber land!

It is 4:38am and I am hoping that I am just taking a little break from sleeping and am not up for the day. Presents probably won't be opened for another 4 1/2 hours as Brenna doesn't "get" Christmas yet and won't be clamoring for daddy to get out of bed at some ungodly hour.

I remember when I was young; my parents had a hard and fast rule that we could wake them until 6 am. I can remember my siblings and I sitting, waiting as the clock ticked (tick, tock, tick, tock) toward that magical hour. It moved so slowly. And then, once 6 o'clock had arrived, we had to wait for them to get coffee and tea, wait for my mom to put the homemade cinnamon rolls in the oven. I think that must be one of the great joys of parenthood- the slow torture of your children on Christmas morning.

And now for something completely different.

Yesterday's potty training was not so messy. In fact, there was only one accident all day. The morning went off without a hitch. Well, without anything actually. Brenna has control. Oh, yeah, does she have control. No accidents but no action on the potty, either. Nothing, in fact, until we put her in a Easy Up for naptime. She was wet within 5 minutes. So we changed the "Dora" (we call it a Dora because the Easy Up has Dora the Explorer on it) and put her down to nap. Which is a whole nother story as there was no napping taking place. Let's call it quiet time, shall we, as Brenna plays, quietly, in her room because she knows that if she is too loud I will come up and try to make her sleep.

Anyway, after quiet time she is put back into her big girl panties. We have a timer set for 20 minutes- wheter she needs to go or not we make a trip to the potty. Shortly after one of our potty times Doug sees Brenna squat- and rushes her to the potty. She is not too messy, surely there is more to come... But, no, there's that control again. Nothing else escapes. Until we prepare to leave for Christmas Eve church service and put a Dora on again. Oh, she knows when she's safe, my friends, she knows.

We will try some more today as I am a glutton for punishment but I may have to concede this battle. Brenna is a formidable opponent, one I will have to outwit and outlast. Think of it like Survivor: Potty Edition.


Day 1

>> Saturday, December 23, 2006

I know that everyone- OK just TKW, but she's an important chickie- is interested in how day 1 of operation "Big Girl Panties" progressed.

Well, I can tell you that it didn't really go quite as I planned. When I made the big potty plans I completely forgot that we had family portraits scheduled this morning. Here is my beautiful family:

Here's how Caelan felt about all the picture-taking:
Adorable, isn't she?

Here's Brenna posing:

And here is my bestest present:

So we had a great photo session and yummy ice cream while we waited for our photos to print. Mmmmm....

Then back home we came. Of course it was nap time when we got here so everyone headed off to bed. After naps Doug took Brenna and headed out to do his Christmas shopping (the first chance he's had in 20 days).

Our first chance for big girl panties didn't come until 5:30 this evening. Just getting Brenna into the panties was a production. No matter how fun they are to play with putting them on is something else all together.

We've had one wet pair of drawers so far. And now, since it's bedtime, I guess we're done for today. I'm pretty sure Brenna didn't learn anything today as Doug grabbed her as soon as she wet herself. Me, I want her to be uncomfortable.

Ahh, tomorrow is another day.

Update: So, the stairs we trekked to get the girls to bed. Brenna & I are in the bathroom cleaning a humidifier; Doug is cuddling Caelan. Water is running. Need I say more? Now answer me this: I sit the girl on the potty with water running & get no results. She stands beside me with water running and pees through her drawers. **sigh**


Let The Games Begin!

>> Thursday, December 21, 2006

Three Days. I figure that's enough time.

Yep, Famous Last Words. I know. I am knocking on the wooden table, pounding on it, actually, as I type them.

Last night whilst shopping for dog food, packing tape and gifts for the girls from their grandparents (and other assorted items that weren't on my list but ended up in my cart) I decided that this weekend was THE WEEKEND. Doug will be home. We have no place to be for the majority of the weekend. It Is TIME!


Tweleve pair of Big Girl Panties. The games begin Saturday morning. Bets are being taken in the comments section. Who will prevail? How long will it take for one team to break? Choose your day (1, 2 or 3) and time by the hour. Whoever guesses the closest "first potty time" (meaning Brenna says she has to potty and makes it) or "mommy's breaking point" gets an amazing prize! Bet early, bet often!


Classic Liberalism vs. Today's

>> Wednesday, December 20, 2006



Jolly Old St. Nicholas

This morning I loaded the girls into the truck and trekked to the mall with the bestest Santa. Real hair, real beard, real belly. Probably really diabetic, but what can you expect with all those cookies he eats?

We picked up Doug at work and enjoyed a nice family outing. Which included the family getting in the picture. Brenna wasn't getting too close to the Jolly Fat Man this year. No how, no way. In fact she wasn't too keen on having her picture taken. Which is why my mouth is wide open as I am talking to the guy behind the camera who played peek-a-boo to get Brenna to smile.

Santa tried to get Brenna to warm up to him. He had a lot of time as the camera people were busy with a previous customer- something about getting more pictures from a previous setting. The Big Guy tried everything- reading, showing her reindeer, asking her what she wanted for Christmas. Nothing worked. She clung to Daddy like her life depended on it. Caelan, on the opposite end of the spectrum, didn't fuss a bit.

As we were leaving Santa asked me what I wanted this year. Before the words stainless steel Kitchen Aid mixer could come out of my mouth I said "I have everything I want." Yeah, I know, gack. But I meant every word.

Since we were at the bestest mall in the area (despite what my sister and SIL say) I stopped in Godiva for a couple of bribery chocolates for Brenna (Chocolate Santas- 2 for $1.65) so we could run through a couple of shops. And I saw the loveliest treat for me. A large macaroon half-dipped in chocolate. Bliss! It was like sin dipped in chocolate and coated in more sin. Joyous goodness. Thankfully they only had one- I could have easily overdosed if they had more.

Still thinking about that coconut goodness when I got home I did the only logical thing: I emailed Meritt to see if she had a killer macaroon recipe. I. MUST. MAKE. THESE! Ohhh, I shudder to think of them resting helplessly on waxed paper... The cookies cooling... The chocolate hardening... Completely unaware that I am going to dine on their delectable goodness... Ahhhh...


And All I Got Was This Lousy T Shirt

As I mentioned in Monday's post Doug has been working fro 2 1/2 weeks straight without a day off. He found out yesterday that he will be out the door of his office on Friday no later than 5 pm and won't go back until Tuesday. We are, understandably, very excited that we get him here at home for three whole days.

But back to all those billable hours...

Yesterday Doug's boss brought him this:

Hmmm... So he worked 2 1/2 weeks straight and all he got was a lousy bunny. Too funny! (Brenna has claimed the bunny.)

In all seriousness he was glad they recognized his work.


One Week Left

>> Monday, December 18, 2006

OK, all you procrastinators, you have one week to find the perfect gift. One week to live up to all the expectations your loved one has. Or, in my case, one week to make some sort of gift list. Yes, I know what you're thinking, "Jody always says that they aren't gifty people." Well, we're not. But there are a couple of things under the tree for Doug from the girls and he wants me to have something to open. I suppose I should get on that...

As for my shopping... Other than a gift card to round out a present I am done. Unless you count the presents I need to buy for the girls from Doug's dad & his wife. They sent stockings and a check. My first reaction is to just put the money in the bank... Lord knows the girls don't need anything. But I am sure that is not what the grandparents had in mind... So I am going to use half the money for gifts and put the other half in their savings accounts.

Other stuff... Hmmm... Like Meritt I had a lot of baking planned. Unlike Meritt I haven't purchased all the supplies. Which is a very good thing as I have no time to bake. I'm just gonna go to her house and beg for cookies.

Wednesday the girls get to visit Santa. Ahhh, good times. I'm sure at least one local school will be out. Maybe I can see the mall police bust someone again.

Brenna will get to visit her favorite babysitter Thursday. Yep, she's off to see Nature Girl- Meritt's daughter- so I can finish that tiny bit of shopping I have left. Caelan, of course, will go with me as handing her over lately has caused her to display her prominent pout:

And she's still not taking a bottle. Luckily the mall I need to visit has nursing rooms.

Doug is brain dead right now. How do I know? He's watching How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. TiVo recorded it and I guess it is just mind-numbing enough for him. Tomorrow will be his 16th straight day of work. He put in 66 billable hours last week. At his hourly rate that's nothing to sneeze at but we miss him here at home. It's looking like Christmas Eve and Christmas Day will be his only days off until the 31st. I forsee a lot of vegging and movie watching.


Up Before The Sun

>> Friday, December 15, 2006

It's shortly after 6am and I am on my second cup of tea. I am considering making my usual breakfast of a fried egg with cheese on whole grain bread as I am beginning to feel hungry. Caelan was up at 5 which isn't too bad when you consider that she went to sleep shortly ater 9pm.

I actually enjoy being up early. I like to see the sun creep around the edges of the landscape before it makes it's grand entrance. I like the calm peacefulness that you only get before everyone has begun to move. I like the fresh feeling a new day brings when you see it come in.

And then the coffeemaker begins grinding, the dog wants out and the baby needs changing. The idyllic charm my day was taking on is shattered. Ah, you can't stop the day once it has begun.

Be sure to check out the post below- lots of pictures for those in need of a Brenna or Caelan fix!


Just Another Day

>> Thursday, December 14, 2006

Ah, here we are again, in the basement watching Cars, Brenna cheering at "the big race" and Caelan asleep in her swing.

I was lucky enough to shower today while Brenna was in her room not napping. I changed out of a tank top and flannel pj bottoms into a clean tank top and linen pj bottoms. My daily uniform unless I have to appear in public.

I really don't have anything worth talking about. Well, other than getting the "guilt" Christmas card from the grandma mentioned in the post below. Ugh. I would really like to just let this go.

I've been taking lots of pictures of the girls lately. Brenna is doing some funny stuff and Caelan is growing like a weed. So I will bribe you with precious photos and you will leave me a nice comment. C'mon, we get about 70 different people through here daily. And I rarely get more than 3-4 comments. So let's just call it your Christmas present to me- leave a comment.

Here we see Brenna modeling the latest in winter wear. The Christmas Tree hat. Actually it's a crocheted decoration my grandmother gave me a few years ago. It has a cone shaped base, which Brenna removed.

Yep, I can just see it; she will be the one with the lampshade on her head at college parties. I should send her to TKW for hints on photo ops to avoid...
We are still having bottle issues. Meritt can back me up on that as she tried yesterday. Here we have Caelan content and making faces at mommy.
And here she is moments later after mommy attempted to give her a bottle. How dare I attempt such a heinous act!
Here is Brenna helping Daddy put up decorations. I had hoped to catch her unaware but she turned at the last minute, caught me in the act and said, "Cheese, mommy, cheese!"
Caelan has learned that pulling the fish makes the lights and music work on her swing.
We have upgraded to the exersaucer. Caelan needs a bit of propping but she seems to enjoy it.
OK, you're here at the bottom of the post. Leave me a nice comment. :)


Traditions and Such

>> Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Today is one of those days that I wish I had a private blog so I could just bitch. Thing is I have so little time I have trouble maintaining this blog I can't even think of adding another. So I will take my bitching down a notch to complaining.

Every family has their traditions. Yours may be "Charlie Brown Thanksgiving" or gathering on Christmas Eve. Your traditions may have changed as you got married and began your own family.

Right now we are experiencing "Traditional" growing pains. Both Doug & I still have grandparents on both sides of our family; two grandmothers for him, one grandmother and one complete set for me. We do our best to see everyone during the year and try really hard for the holidays. For the most part it works. Most festivities are not held on the actual holiday. Except one. One grandmother has the Christmas gathering on Christmas Day.

This has caused a problem as we spend Christmas Day at home. I made the mistake of pointing out that it isn't "always on Christmas Day"- last year it was on Friday the 23rd- and got the reply of, "It IS always on Christmas Day and it works for everyone. We aren't going to change it for you." Ouch. I didn't ask that it be changed; I only said that Christmas Day doesn't work for us as we are building our own traditions. (Plus we have two small children and live 2 hours away. Hmmm, leave by 3- interrupting nap time- to be there at 5, leave at 8 - to be home at a "decent" time-, have kids fall asleep in car to be awakened at 10 when we get home and then fight to get them back to sleep. I don't think so.)

Anyway, now we are the "bad guys" who are ruining Christmas. That bothers me as I truly want to please people. But my "bite my ass" side is coming out. Next year we will skip the drawing of names and I will just announce, to everyone at the same time, that Christmas Day is for our family, at home, safe from snowy roads and holiday drivers.

Then I can get the cut direct- the cut by phone annoys me.


Connection Issues

>> Monday, December 11, 2006

And for once it's not Blogger!

Our router seems to be having problems and our connection times out. Often. I am having to load each page three times, on average, which makes it nearly impossible to check or reply to email or to comment on any blogs.

We spent almost an hour on the phone with tech support. Of course English was this person's second language and her accent was very thick. And we could tell that she was following a script; she didn't seem to have any real knowledge. And our problem remains unresolved.

Our router is a DSL router provided by the company so we can't just replace it- which is what needs to happen. Even I can tell that. Unfortunately our "techie" placed blame on our computer. Ummm, that means that all the computers are the problem... I doubt that 5 computers, all different makes and types developed the same problem at the same time. It's not like they are female and their cycles all coincide after a while.

Ugh. So, you will probably notice me lurking about until this problem is resolved. Don't take it personally. It's not you... it's me.


Third Ring of Hell... Or Something Like It

>> Friday, December 08, 2006

I have been awake since about 4:30 surfing the net for anything that will help me to get Caelan to take a bottle.

You would assume that by now- 6am- I would have lots of info. Not so much. For some reason the wireless connection is spotty and keeps dropping every time I try to load a page. Every. Time.

So I have only a few bits of useful info. Well, info, anyway. Not sure how much is useful.

**Warm the nipple. OK, logical, we'll give that a go.
**Nipple X, Y, or Z works best. Ummm, got 'em all. I don't think it's the nipple; I think it's that it's not mommy's nipple.
**Hold baby in a different position. Again, logical, I'll try it.
**Don't wait until baby is hungry. Been there, done that.
**If baby refuses milk- and it's breast milk, not nasty formula, just so you know- try apple juice. Hmmm, ok. I'm willing to do about anything.
**One site even recommended a sippy cup.

So, "why the worry now?", you wonder. Well, here's the deal. We have been working to get Caelan to take a bottle for about two months now. Granted, we haven't been working at it all that hard because I am readily available and, honestly, it is just easier to nurse than to listen to her scream.

And for those of you ask such a silly question (and I can only assume that you are childless) let me just say that last night I was showering (with Brenna because A) she needed to bathe and B) showering doesn't happen alone if she can hear the water running) and left Caelan with Daddy. When we exited the shower I could hear the screaming. Clearly. She was two rooms away. When I finally got Brenna dried, lotioned and dressed for bed and got myself to her, Caelan was lobster-red, shaking and so thoroughly pissed off that she would stop nursing so she could vent her frustrations.

But back to the "why". Tomorrow is scrapping night- the one night a month that I get away and don't have to wipe messy hands and faces, change poopy diapers, deal with tragedies or any other kid-related stuff for about 7 hours. Plus I get to hang with other adults. You don't know how precious it is.

Doug found out yesterday that he will be on call this weekend. The last time that happened he put in almost 12 hours on Saturday and 9 on Sunday. Not that I am complaining- the money would be quite handy right now. But I am hesitant to inflict Caelan on anyone else.

My mom, bless her, has offered to sit with the girls. And maybe if I am not here Caelan will take a bottle. But I would like to try and make it easier on everyone.

Any suggestions?



>> Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Brenna is currently taking all spoons out of the silverware drawer and very carefully placing them on the coffee table. I'm not really sure of the rhyme or reason of how they are laid out but she is being very meticulous about it.

Now the spoons have migrated to the floor. Oooohh, wait, if you look closely you can find a cheese knife.


Got 'Em!

>> Monday, December 04, 2006


Christmas Joy Begins

>> Sunday, December 03, 2006

Yesterday we pulled all the Christmas decor from the attic above the garage and began the December ritual of decorating. Doug put out the yard ornaments with only two breaks to thaw himself.

Tonight's plans were included a fireplace photo op for the girls and tree decorating. Ahhh, the best laid plans...

We had the girls dressed and ready. We prepared the beanbag prop for Caelan, Brenna jumped on it and didn't want to get off. We removed Brenna, got Caelan situated.... And Brenna refused to sit down again. After trying for a short time with tears, kicking and screaming we decided that we will try again tomorrow. If there is no cooperation I suppose Caelan will appear solo. Look at that smirk.

Tree trimming had to be rethought this year. Breakable ornaments up, kid friendly ornaments down. No glass balls. The tree looks a little bare. Brenna did have fun rearranging "her" ornaments, finding the perfect place.

As for decorating the house... Not so much. The banisters can't be wrapped in evergreen- Brenna uses them when she walks downstairs. Table decorations- if you must ask you have never had a two-year-old.

So I have a half decorated house. I suppose it will be that way for a few years. Maybe when I can decorate fully again I can morph into Meritt.


She May Not Sing the Alphabet Song...

>> Friday, December 01, 2006

In fact Brenna really doesn' t like the alphabet song all that much. BUT she can identify all but 5 letters by sight and make their sounds. I would take credit for that, being as she is just two, but I know that her Learning Leap (HA! Retails for $35. I got it at Target on clearance when Brenna was 6 months old for $9!) and Fridge Phonics deserve most of the credit. I, as the mommy, am just the "helper".


Our House

>> Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Is a very, very, very nekkid house.

Doug walked outside this morning, came back in and announced, "So, we're the only ones on the block without Christmas lights up."


This I know. I heard the Christmas light rental guys at the neighbor's house yesterday. "Next weekend," I told him. With my living room full of laundry last weekend- from our trip- I was in no condition to add to the confusion by attempting to put up any sort of decorations.

When I was a child my mom had a hard and fast rule that the Christmas tree didn't go up until her birthday- December 18. It was probably to keep the two separate and keep her birthday from being overshadowed but it seemed like torture when I was young.

Everyday in December kids at school would talk about their trees and all the presents accumulating under them. Comparitively our Christmas' (Christmases?) were modest. Not a bad thing in retrospect- we definately didn't take things for granted and we were far from spoiled. Not that it was any consulation when I was begging for a Cabbage Patch doll. Remember when they were over $100 and people fought over them? But now I appreciate that I wasn't just handed everything I wanted. It really does make me appreciate my life now so much more.


I live in a house that could easily have three trees and not feel over done. We have a large picture window that overlooks the back yard, perfect for a tree. Our "formal" dining room faces the street and has a large window that requires some sort of decor. And our basement, where we spend the majority of our family time, has a corner that is termed a "dance floor". Right next to the wet bar it is tiled,the walls are mirrored and speakers are positioned overhead. All it is lacking is a disco ball. That area is perfect for the tree; the lights look so nice reflecting in the mirrors.

So, in the next three & a half weeks -or less-I need to:
finish shopping (mostly online, thank goodness!)
do some baking
find out when extended family stuff is and see if we can work it in to our busy schedule
find a dress for the inevitable work party (must look hot so Doug's co-workers can be jealous)

Sure, along with day to day activites that seems do-able. HA!


A Whole New Way to Read the Geek

>> Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Stolen from VW Bug who sote it from Sticks...


Now you can read our blog if you're a redneck!

Or if you reside "down under"

Take a few minutes and do this- it's hilarious!


Early Morning Sounds and Random Thoughts

As I sit here waiting for Caelan to wake for the day... Did you read that? Waiting for Caelan to wake for the day... Yep, she slept through the night again! I think we will mark this as a trend now and put it in her baby book as official. Yippee!

As I was laying in bed waiting for the same thing I decided that I have officially taken over Iowa Geek and now it can really be termed as a "mommy blog". Doug has been so busy that he hasn't posted in ages. Maybe I should change the name to "If Momma Ain't Happy..."

Brenna sems to have developed a family trait. This one must come from my mom's side of the family as I think all of us kids have done this. Through the monitor I can hear her talking in her sleep. It happens every morning about this time. It's kind of cute, her little sing-song voice soft and sleepy.

Rain is beating against the windows. Yes, rain. We are having a wet winter so far. If the precip keeps up we will have snow by Thursday when the temperature drops. Lots of it. It's a good thing Doug bought me a new snowblower.

Huh, lightning. Weird.

Still waiting on Caelan. I can hear her softly breathing through her monitor. It is taking a lot for me to not go up there.

Potty training is taking some definite steps in the right direction. Brenna has been telling us when she is going, which can make for some messy changes of pants if you aren't careful, and heading for the potty at that time. Yesterday, as Caelan was kind-of nursing mostly just hanging out at my boob, Brenna announced "Poopy mommy, poopy!" And we made it to the potty in time for a tiny bit to make it into the toilet. Celebratory dancing ensued.

Ahhh, I hear my little one waking. Gotta go!


There's No Place Like Home

>> Sunday, November 26, 2006

Brenna the traveler.
She pulled her bag of goodies like a pro. Her current favorite bedtime buddy was tied to the top with her snuggly blanket. And, yes, we had her leashed. I think that my favorite thing in the airports this time was to see people smile when they saw her walking down the corridors.

After 8 days and 7 nights in and around Dallas we are home. I know my breathing evened out as we were driving away from the airport. And my stress level dropped significantly. Because, no matter how much you enjoy visiting family, you can get just a wee bit too much togetherness.

I know that having the two little ones didn't help a bit. By the time we returned to the hotel they were both worn down from all the activity and were just heathens. Bedtime was a nightmare. And, although Brenna slept through the night (once we got her to sleep), Caelan had a difficult time adjusting to everything. Especially being held so much. I think she may have been overstimulated. Not that I blame anyone for wanting to hold her- she is adorable.

But now we are home and settling into our normal routines. Caelan is enjoying her swing and bouncy-seat that we couldn't take, Brenna is running around like a loon burning off all the cooped-up-hotel-room-energy, I am doing loads and loads of laundry and Doug is doing something on his computer and keeping the girls occupied so I can get things done. Ahhh, home.


Happy Thanksgiving

>> Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!


Civilization At Last!

>> Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Having left HH this morning we arrived in the Dallas suburbs and checked into a hotel that is ***s (three stars) above the last one.

Now I understand that you need to cater to your clientele. I get that. But the hotel we stayed at while in Canton (name will be withheld as I don't have much good to say about it) was bad.

First, the rooms all had exterior entrances. I hate that. I just don't feel safe. Second, I wanted a room with one king bed so I could have the extra floor space for Brenna. But, no. Regulations in that county say that, with 3 people (even if one person isn't a whole person), we had to have a room with two queen beds. Third, all the rooms on the first floor, which is where they put us because of the girls, were handicap accessible. Low, low, low showerheads. Too low even for me. Oh, and they were the hand-held kind. And the support to hold them up was not so supportive. Fourth, I'm not really sure just how clean things were. And, sadly, this hotel the best option. At least they had wireless internet.

I guess that tells you that the clientele in Canton is A) there for First Monday Trade Days, B) half the people are older, C) and not as picky as I am.

Now we are at the Wingate (I'll use their name, our room is spacious and clean with a tall shower head). A mini-suite with a king bed, couch, desk, closet... So nice. And wireless internet. Gotta be able to geek out.

And now I suppose we should stop with the geeking and get over to Doug's dad's house.


I Should Probably Clarify...

>> Tuesday, November 21, 2006

The title of my last post was a not so obscure quote that the parent of any child under 10 probably recognized right away.

Brenna’s new favorite movie is Cars. I have to say that it is an incredibly entertaining movie with an excellent soundtrack. Anyway, the race car gets stuck in a town that is destined to become extinct. He is sentenced to community service and strapped to a road paving machine named Bessie. Not long into the movie he can be heard to scream, “I’m in hillbilly hell. My IQ’s dropping by the second.” Funny stuff. Everyone should see this movie.

I have an embarrassing admission to make. Our rental car is a Saturn minivan. And I like it. There, I said it. I like it. Lots of room… In car DVD… Third row seating that lies flat… I told Doug that if he ever gets in an accident with the car that he had better make sure he totals it. Then we could get one of these.

I can’t believe I even said that. I always swore I would never have a minivan. Then again I swore I would never get married or have kids. Never say never.

OK, I did mention a big family event in my last post. It was a long day. Doug’s aunt & uncle put out quite a spread and all his Texas relation were there. Brenna played all day with her cousin Lyric and her second cousin Emma. She was awake from 8 am until shortly after 8pm, when she fell asleep on the drive back to the hotel.

And there our luck ended. Getting her into pj’s was, in hindsight, a big mistake. It woke her up and she began to wail. Long and loud. She was so tired. For an hour she cried. For an hour we tried to calm her. For an hour nothing worked. Until she collapsed from exhaustion with little whimpers as she slept.

Caelan didn’t sleep while we were away from the hotel- unless she was being held, and then only in snippets. Needless to say we were all exhausted and slept in Monday morning. Ahhhh…

Yesterday and today are lazy. Just hanging at Doug’s mom’s, utilizing her washer & dryer, letting her feed us, hooking her to the internet.


We went out for dinner with Doug's brother & his family and Doug's mom & step-dad. Getting Doug's mom on the WWW turned into a late night event and I think Doug may have given her techie overload. I kept telling him to show her how to check email and the blog, that other things would come to her as she used it more, but he has all these tricks and shortcuts... Sometimes they are overwhelming to me.

So now it's almost 11:30. Brenna fell asleep about half an hour ago and Doug just put Caelan in the crib. I need to get a few things packed so I don't have to do it tomorrow and then get to sleep. Tomorrow morning is going to come earlier than I like.


I'm in Hillbilly Hell... My IQs Dropping by the Minute

>> Monday, November 20, 2006

Coming to you half comatose from Canton, Texas; east of Dallas and completely another world. We're in Hillbilly Hell to visit Doug's mom for a few days and then we head back to civilization to visit Doug's dad.

Don't let this smiling face fool you...

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We flew down on a small jet. At least it was a jet and not a prop... I hate props. Anyway, to get into the plane you have to cross an open bridge-thingie. The engines were running and Brenna got scared. Very scared. Frozen and not moving scared. I was in front of her carrying the car seat, a carry-on bag and a diaper bag. Doug had Caelan, his carry-on bag and Brenna's carry-on bag.

So, there we were, our hands full and a terrified child screeching at the top of her lungs. I put stuff down on the first row of seats and carried Brenna to the rear of the plane. Doug followed with his cargo and I had to return to the front of the plane for the car seat. No assistance from the flight crew. None.

Did I mention that we were the LAST ONES on the plane? Yep. They had to put us in different seats and it took so long that I had to maneuver that car seat through a full plane. What a nightmare.

And it continued until we were on the runway. Thankfully the terrified screams ended and Brenna napped for a bit. Then she was all smiles.

Caelan, on the opposite end of the spectrum, slept until 10 minutes before we landed.

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When she woke I fed her until we landed and we all departed the plane with no problems.

Retrieving the car took forever. It was over 70 degrees and we were all overdressed. But, finally, we were on our way, fighting the hideous Dallas traffic and heading to Hillbilly Hell.

Later I'll tell you about our big family event yesterday. Or, to be more precise, the events after the family gathering.


All Packed

>> Friday, November 17, 2006

Well, Brenna is. Hahaha...

My day is crazy and is not slowing down. I'm trying to get packed and ready to leave tomorrow. I'm hoping to shower sometime. Laundry is getting done. Last minute notes are being added to my list. Both girls are finally down for naps after a fussy morning.

Ahhhhh... A short breather... Until the craziness begins again.

Next time you hear from me I'll be in Texas. At least it will be warm...


It's About Time

>> Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Since we are heading into urban sprawl central next week I finally got around to getting our wills done. It took all of 20 minutes. Max. I used Legal Zoom.

Why would I do such a thing online, you ask. Well, several reasons.
1) We needed to do it. If something happens to Doug (God forbid) I don't want to have to dick around with the courts over stupid stuff.
2) If something happens to both of us (God forbid) I want to know where my girls are going. And who is handling the substantial life insurance payout to take care of them.
3) We don't have the time right now to sit in a lawyer's office for hours to take care of a simple will.
4) It cost us under $200 for both wills.

I gotta say, for easy of use and cost I give them high marks. Pretty straight-forward stuff. If you have kids and no will I highly recommend checking them out. And get on the stick. You never know what tomorrow will bring.

And that concludes yout PSA for tonight....


A Geek Baby is a Healthy Baby

Caelan had her 2 month well baby visit today. She's growing like crazy. 22 1/2 inches long and 11 lbs 1 oz. Momma's milk is doin' it's job.

Three shots today, though. She wasn't thrilled about that. Although I think what she hates most is being held down. She also got the new rotavirus vaccine. It's given orally, though. She did well taking it. I wish she would take a bottle as well.

Ah, bottles. She just doesn't like them. Fights them all the way. But we keep trying. Saturday should be interesting. I'm gonna try to nurse her at the airport before we take off. Find a quiet corner or something. But she'll need something on take-off and landing. Could be interesting. Aren't you glad you won't be on the plane with us?


Today is Monday

>> Monday, November 13, 2006

Usually the weeks pass by without me giving a thought to the day. Unless it is Thursday - Brenna's play day at the gym - or the weekend - Daddy time! - days just don't matter. Today, however, begins a countdown. I have 5 days to pack, prepare and propose ideas for our odyssey to Texas.

I say odyssey because I just know it will feel like a long wandering journey. As for the changes in fortune, well, according to my MIL there are many gifts awaiting us (baby gifts, birthday gifts and probably Christmas). The change in fortune isn't in the gifts, however, it in in the fact that we are taking the maximum number of bags on the plane and we will have to ship back everything she gives us.

I am a list maker. It helps me feel like I am in control even when life is swirling around me out of control. Things to take (clothes, breast pump, bottles, toys for the plane, toys for the hotel....), things to buy when we get there (diapers, wipes...), things to do before we go (take dog to mom's, make sure cat has enough food & water to survive...).

Today's list includes:
1) Check weather in Dallas so we don't roast in our "northern" clothes or freeze in "southern" clothes.
2) Find out what the airline restrictions are this week. Traveling with a baby and a 2-year-old you know we will be carrying on liquids. I'm not gonna drink breast milk. I don't think Doug will, either.
3) Loads of laundry.
4) Feed the screaming baby. NOW!!!



Wanna Come Over?

>> Friday, November 10, 2006

Creme Puffs and Truffles and Cheesecake!
Oh My!

And all homemade. The cheesecake is a lovely pumpkin swirl with a ginger snap crust. Yummy! And these items are to be served with champagne. Mmmmm...

I should warn you that I am hosting a jewelry party tonight. Hence the bribery. My neighbor from the "old neighborhood" became an independent contractor for a jewelry company. Since I am always happy to help someone start their own business I agreed to host a party. Gotta support people who work hard to make a business.

Although as I look out my window I see snow- and hear thunder. Maybe I should serve warm mulled cider instead. Or cocoa with schnapps.

I'm not above getting people drunk so they will spend money. hehe

Just a bit later:

I think I'm living in a snowglobe. There are flakes as big as my palm floating around out there. No accumulation my ass.

And although the photo looks like I took it in B&W it's actually full color. Yep, my world is shades of grey.


Let's Hope This is a Trend

>> Thursday, November 09, 2006

I woke up this morning and heard nothing. Nothing from Brenna's monitor. Nothing from Caelan's monitor.

I heard cars on the road.

I saw a lightening around the edges of the bedroom windows.

I saw the clock.

6 am.

Yep, Caelan slept all night! Woo Hoo!!!


Happy Birthday to Me!

>> Tuesday, November 07, 2006

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Me age 13 days with my aunt. Look like another baby on this blog?

And what does my day hold? Oh, excitement galore. So far we voted, Brenna got her flu shot (she was very brave and it was over in seconds. No tears. I am sure the M&Ms helped to hold them off) and we went to the grocery store.

Later I plan to list a few things on eBay, clean the basement and make chicken pot pie (see recipe here; it's really easy!)for dinner.

Doug gave me the accessory kit for my camera today. It was sitting right by the coffee pot. I walked by it twice before I saw it. The best hiding places are in plain sight. :)

Happy voting day, everyone!


A Whole Lotta Bull

>> Monday, November 06, 2006

Cow! Hi cow!
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Brenna lets great-grandpa show her the bull.
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That's one ton of beef on the hoof. Great grandpa calls him Baxter.
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What a brave girl.
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>> Saturday, November 04, 2006

Four am.

Wide awake.

Baby sleeping.

Mind racing.



Paper Bags... The New Cardboard Box?

>> Friday, November 03, 2006

As some of you may have heard in 2005 the Cardboard Box was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame (click on the picture of the box to be taken to it's page). And for good reason. Who hasn't seen their child on Christmas morning, after all the presents are opened, playing in the boxes and completely ignoring all those toys you spent so much time and thought picking out.

As our faithful readers know, Brenna's birthday was last week. Alas, no boxes to play in.

Brenna, however, is innovative. Last night she discovered paper bags.

Here she is with what she was calling her "purse". Of course she has actual purses. A few used to be mine. Maybe she's holding out for Coach?
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So I ask what is in her purse. This is how she "shows" me her blanket in her purse.
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One bag for the blanket, another for the shoes. Doug was so helpful in pointing out how much I like shoes in a bag. I do prefer a DSW bag...
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I got a new toy last night. My birthday is next Tuesday. A day that will include getting Brenna's flu shot and voting. Doug asked me what I wanted and I said a new camera. Our digital camera is just fine; very nice if truth be told. But a bit bulky. I like small and portable. My favorite camera ever was my 35mm Canon Elph. In fact I still travel with it. It takes great photos and is so compact...

So Doug got me the digital version. Sooo tiny. I can take it everywhere. Beware!

One feature it has that I love is the ability to automatically do color accent photos. You know, where one thing is in color and the rest is black & white... LOVE IT!

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I am actually reading the manuals to see what other fun things it does!


Ya Know....

>> Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Big, fat, old men with handicapped tags on their cars shouldn't be allowed to drive new Mustang convertibles.

Just my opinion.


A Good Samhain To You

>> Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Celtic New Year.

Traditionally Samhain (pron. 'sau - an'), November 1st, marked the beginning of the year in Ireland. On the eve of Samhain the separation between the past and the future, this world and the next dissolved, the fairies feast, the púcáns (magical animals) roam and the Irish people set lighted candles inside turnips. The inspiration for the Jack-o-Lantern, like so many of our Halloween customs, grew from this festival that began a season of song and stories told around the fire during the long nights of winter.

Would you like some candy?

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Could you refuse this little faery?

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Beggar's Night was last night in our suburb. It was freakin' cold! And windy! Brenna had on thermal pjs and her sweat suit. Not a nice night to be out. We went ta a dozen houses and then came home to hand out candy. I think Brenna had more fun at home.

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She stood at the door holding the cauldron of goodies saying, "People. People. People coming." It was so cute.


Happy Birthday Brenna

>> Thursday, October 26, 2006

You always hear how fast they grow up but it really doesn't prepare you for the fact of it. In two short years we've gone from this:

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To this:
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My faery princess is two years old. It just doesn't seem possible. Happy birthday Brenna Clare! We love you so much!

And, if that weren't enough reason to celebrate, when we got home from going to Chuck E Cheese for greasy pizza and games Brenna's pull up was dry. She sat right down on the potty and went pee-pee. There was much celebrating and cheering in the bathroom tonight. She is such a big girl! Yea Brenna!


I Admit Defeat

I have control issues. Namely, I like to be in control. I plan everything. I make lists. I have timelines. It's all about scheduling.

Well, it was all about scheduling. Now it's all about Caelan. Whatever I am doing, or should be doing, must cease when she needs fed. Or changed. Or just held. And that throws my entire day into disarray. It also explains why my house hasn't been cleaned at all this week.

I should probably note that today is Brenna's birthday. If I were a good mommy with more time I would do a lovely post. Eh, maybe later. I mention it now because we are having her birthday party on Saturday. I have to clean the house for it. Have to. It's a mess.

So I had to break down and admit that I just can't do it all. I'm not super mom.

So today I ordered Brenna's birthday cake. Yes, I admit it, I am paying someone to bake and decorate a cake. I just can't do it. I haven't got the time -or the energy, to be quite honest.

And now Brenna is saying she's poopy- which I doubt; she just likes the attantion- and Caelan is making her grunting noises- which means she is pooping.

Yep, really glad I delegated the cake to someone else.


Our Beautiful Girls

>> Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Today I took the girls to Portrait Innovations; Brenna for her "I'm Two" picture and Caelan for her "I'm New" picture. Aren't they gorgeous?

I really enjoyed the experience at Portrait Innovations and the pictures were printed immediately. Also a great value. I got LOTS of pictures for less than I thought I would spend.

Meritt- the dress Caelan is wearing is what you got her. :)


I've Only to Ask (aka Happy Anniversary)

My wonderful husband, remembering our anniversary, got me a beautiful card with a lovely poem inside and a heartfelt message. Me, also remembering our anniversary, completely forgot to get a card the last two nights when I was out buying other necessities.

I'm so lame.

So, on the the heartfelt message: "What can I give to the perfect wife? You have only to ask and it will be yours."

Now, I must say that I am far from the perfect wife. I have a temper, I'm a control freak, my house is far from clean and many days I am lucky to get out of yoga pants and tank top and into real clothes.

Now, the asking and receiving thing... That's full of infinate possibilities.

My first instinct is to beg for 8 solid hours of sleep. But, unless Doug can grow breasts and begin producing milk I think that may be out for another month or so.

Next I thought about the possibility of trading in our tickets to Dallas for tickets to Ireland. Oh, yeah, that would win me big points with Doug's family.

I would love a weekend away. Either Minneapolis or Kansas City for some shopping. That would require taking someone with us to watch the girls so we could go out for an evening. I'm sure my mom would agree to come but then my dog is sitter-less.

But, quite honestly, I have everything I need or want.

I have a wonderful husband who provides completely for me and the girls. I have a beautiful house. I am lucky enough to get to raise my children and not have to work. For me to ask for more would be incredibly selfish.

To My Geek:

Happy 3rd anniversary. Because of you I have a life that I was afraid to admit I wanted; a life that is complete and perfect. Together we have created a family and a life that I wouldn't trade for a castle in the British Isles.

I love you.



All Shot to Hell

>> Monday, October 23, 2006

Yep, I had such good intentions. I was gonna get stuff done yesterday. My intentions were about as far as I got.

Halloween decor is still on the dining room table- although I did get the basket of decorated mini-punkins and gourds onto the porch. Fabric wasn't even touched , let alone cut. Scrapbook wasn't even looked at- or thought about after I posted about it. Dishwasher is full of clean dishes, counter has dirty dishes all over it.

I did manage to give Doug, Jen & Brenna haircuts yesterday. And help Jen prepare for a costume party. I actually made it out of the house to get groceries (alone. Ahhhh, alone) and the girls both had baths so I suppose important things were achieved.

It's a big week here at Casa Geek. Tomorrow is our 3rd anniversary. And the girls are getting their pictures taken. Thursday is Brenna's second birthday- and her first visit to Chuck E Cheese. And Saturday is her birthday party.

Now I just have to decide if we will have a theme- other than "Brenna's Birthday". Decorating cakes just isn't my strong suit, to put it mildly.

Want to know what else is shot to hell? My abs. I guess that's what follows two c-sections. Today, with Dr's approval, I began my attempts to get back in shape. OK, so I'm in shape. Right now it's kind of a rectangular shape with boobs. No waist. Ick.

So today I begin what I am not calling a diet and exercise routine. Nope, I am calling it eating in moderation and additional movement. No sense it trying to write down food intake and exercises done when I can barely check email most days.

I do have a goal: At my annaul checkup in April (6 months) I want to be down 30lbs. That's 5 lbs a month. Sounds do-able. Right?


Just A Little Time

>> Sunday, October 22, 2006

Wow, so my last post was Wednesday. How lame I feel. I have good intentions, really I do. I think I have everyone occupied, fed, changed. I sit down at the computer. And then it strikes. Something always strikes.

This morning I was just getting ready to post. My plan was to hide in the basement with a cup of tea. But I needed the tea. So up to the kitchen I went. Brenna decided to join me in the basement. OK. So we have to find a video to occupy her. Not an easy task. She has moved on from Buzz & Woody and now her favorite is Incredibles. Which I nixed. After a few false starts she settled for Blues Really Big Movie.

OK, heading for the computer. Almost there. When Doug appears with a crying Caelan and says "I can't fix it." Commence nursing.

Now I have finished feeding Caelan and the entire family has joined me in the basement. So much for hiding. Doug has pulled out the couch and he and Caelan are hiding under a blanket. Brenna is "finding" them and watching Blue.

So I have a few minutes. But whatever it was I planned to say has long since disappeared. I'm sure it would have been amusing. So now I'll just bore you and keep rambling along.

The sun has decided to shine today. I have to get Brenna outside to burn off some energy from being cooped up in the house for so long. We'll put up the outside Halloween decorations lateer and I'll have Brenna haul the pumpkins from the garage to the front stoop.

I need to cut the material for Caelan's bed skirt. Yes, it still isn't done. Her early arrival really threw off my schedule and I just can't seem to catch up. I keep telling myself that when she is sleeping through the night my days will be easier because I won't need to nap in the afternoon.

I say that... But I think I am deluding myself.

What else? Hmmm, I would like to work on my Ireland scrapbook. In another month it will be a year since we went. I should really have it done by that anniversary.

Speaking of anniversaries... Ours is Tuesday. Maybe I'll have time to post about it later. Now I should think about preparing breakfast. Pumpkin pancakes, eggs, bacon. Mmmmmm...


Maybe A Little Cross Promotion?

>> Wednesday, October 18, 2006

I wonder if breast feeding infants would increase if doctors cross promoted the health benefits for baby with the fact that it helps you lose weight?

Today marks one month since Caelan was born. I visited my OB for my postpartum checkup and found that I have lost 26 pounds. Granted, about 10 pounds disappeared relatively quickly when she was born and there was some water that went away about 2 weeks after. But still... I'm about 5 pounds above my pre-pregnancy weight.

Of course things are a bit less toned than they were 10 months ago. Luckily all is healing nicely and I can start doing pilates and lifting weights again. Technically. Finding the time may prove difficult. Luckily Brenna likes pilates.

I may have to get her a mat- she seems to take mine.


Ding Dong the Witch is DEAD!

>> Tuesday, October 17, 2006

In case anyone was wondering what ever happened to the renters next door with the noisy dogs....They moved out effective September 30. Without notice to the owners. And they skipped out on their last month's rent. And they trashed the house. And they changed the locks so the owners had to hire a locksmith to get in. And they did not return the garage door openers.

So, they were awful people, just as I suspected. GOOD RIDDANCE!

I went over and trimmed the scrub trees growing out from under the deck after I asked the owner's brother if it was OK. I couldn't stand it any longer!!!!!! He informed us that the renters were horrible to the homeowners the entire time they lived there. Big surprise. Anyway, this tale has a happy and quiet ending for me! There will be no more renters!


It Got Us

You will have to forgive the lack of posting, it seems that we caught the bug that is going around. Or, more correctly, it got us. No fevers but stuffy, icky noses and big coughs.

Brenna got it first followed by Doug and now I am in the midst of the worst of it. Doug has been slamming Airborne like it's tequila shots and I, well, I am drug free. Which sucks. I would give almost anything for some DayQuil. That's the sucky thing about nursing- it's just like being pregnant- you can't take anything good for colds. So I am drinking lots of tea and OJ.

Caelan is showing no ill effects from us coughing and sneezing all around her. She, of course, is on the best stuff to keep you well- mommy's milk.


The MPs Are On To You

>> Thursday, October 12, 2006

Yep, the big, bad MALL POLICE are on the case.

Today I loaded up the girls and headed to the western suburb of our small city to the "new mall". OK, so it's been open two years but you know how these things are- there are shops here that I mourned when I moved from the Twin Cities. It's a really nice mall with some more "upscale" shops than you find at the city's "old malls".

Anyway, after trying to wear Brenna down in the play area we headed up to the food court. After ordering food at Wendy's (two kid's meals, one with chocolate milk- for Brenna, one with white milk- for me but Brenna took it, too, one with fries- for us to share, one with orange slices- also to share but Brenna ate them all while I fed Caelan), having the manager refigure the total as the girl taking my order barely spoke English and finding a seat we settled in to eat.

As I am trying to get Caelan to take a bottle and making sure Brenna doesn't drench herself in milk I notice one plain clothed MP and two in uniform circling the food court. They end up behind us- we are seated next to a table of four young boys, one of whom had just left the table. The MPs see him across the food court and split up to apprehend him. His friends, hearing the MPs- as I did- know exactly who they are after. As they watch the MPs follow their friend they quickly get out of the booth and make their way to an exit.

So I'm watching this all go down and wondering just what they are going to do. They don't look old enough to drive and I'm sure they were just dropped off by someone's mommy. Then Caelan begins to scream and I forget all about the boys.

Until we are making our way out. An MP runs by us and I see the three boys who left shortly before. The MP heards them toward Hollister where they are met by the other MPs and their friend.

So my guess is that "friend" absconded with an item from Hollister and wasn't so smooth about it. Sucks to be them when their mommys find out. I wonder if they will get grounded from the very fancy cell phones they were carrying. Or maybe from their very expensive video game systems. Surely they won't lose their iPods- that would just be heinous.


And Today?

>> Tuesday, October 10, 2006

So, what does the day hold for this SAHM and her kidlets? Not much. My major plan today is to clean the basement, do a couple loads of laundry and wash dishes. I don't think the girls and I will even get out of our loungewear (ie: pajamas). Yep, it's gonna be a lazy day.

I've got lists of things that I would like to do. So many lists. Amd every time I think I may get to something other than housework I am reminded by screaming and crying that I have A) a baby that needs to eat, B) a toddler that needs to eat, C) a baby that needs a diaper change, D) a stinky toddler that needs a diaper change (no, the potty training hasn't taken yet) or E) some other catastrophy that I must set to rights or bear the consequences for untold amounts of time.

Caelan is sleeping and Brenna is coloring at her desk. I should really begin cleaning- my desk is a mess. It will take me forever just to clean it.


First Night- First Week

>> Monday, October 09, 2006

Caelan slept in her crib in her bedroom for the first time last night. Mommy & Daddy had the best sleep since bringing her home.

Because of the c-section and the declaration from the doctor to not go up and down steps any more than necessary we had her in a bassinet our room for the past 2 weeks. And Caelan is not a quiet sleeper; she grunts. Alot. Loudly. The grunting worries me a little, actually. I wonder if her airway is wide enough- she has the tiniest little nostrils- a preemie nose sucker-thingie (an aspirator?) is too big. The doctor doesn't seem concerned so I suppose she is ok.

Today we embark on our first week completely on our own. We've had family either staying with us or checking in on us since we came home- and the help was greatly appreciated. It is much easier to get stuff done or run little errands when you have people around to watch the little ones.

Plans today? Dust and vacuum the main floor of the house, visit the chiropractor & the grocery store do one or two loads of laundry and bake pumpkin bread. (Note to Brent: no extra banana bread but I have a loaf of pumpkin with your name on it. Let me know.)

And I'll get started on that. Just as soon as I nurse Caelan, feed Brenna & myself some breakfast, get us all cleaned and dressed and wash some dishes.

Damn. And I was so hoping it would be an Oprah & bon-bon day. HA!

** UPDATE: I actually got it all done!


I should be...

>> Saturday, October 07, 2006

Cleaning somewhere in the house; the bathrooms, bedrooms, living room, kitchen, dining room.

But I'm not.

I should be folding laundry.

But I'm not.

I should be gathing the family to get out the door to make a WalMart run.

But I'm not.

I should be making banana bread.

But I'm not.

What I am doing is playing Elmo's Keyboard-O-Rama on the Sesame Street website with Brenna and, alternately, having her count my toes.


Meet my girls

>> Friday, October 06, 2006

Jody gave me the best gift for my birthday...


Doug's Girls

I am so proud of all of them.

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