Thursday, May 31, 2012

At Least the Zebra Gets It

I may not be an expert in potty training a Toddler....but I can lay down the basics so that a Toddler can potty train a zebra!

 Meet Zebra, Sparky Zebra...although I think Sparky may be his last name.

 The Toddler is a great motivator.  He applauded Zebra's efforts for using the potty and helped him flush, as well as wash and dry hands hooves....he also changed his imaginary diaper.

Good job Zebra, now that you are out of diapers, maybe you can encourage the Toddler.

Care Package #4

Rainbow Swirl Angel Food Cake
I tried it!  I baked a cake in a mason jar!

I had stumbled across A woman and military spouse who challenged herself to make 52 cakes in a year.  She didn't want her deployed hubby to miss out so every week she sent her husband a cake in a mason jar!  Brilliant!  I am no grand baker, nor am I pushing myself to learn...but I did think that sending cakes in jars to my Hubby would be fun.

I didn't take pictures of the process, but DO follow the tip of not filling the jar over 1/2 full....cake rises *forehead smack*

My husband's favorite cake is angel food, and I failed at the idea of making a matching cake for the Big D and daddy.  The Birthday in a Box carepackage didn't happen.  Which as it turns out is okay.  Hubby informed me N-O knickknacks, nothing that takes up space, there just isn't room....but go ahead and send the

As I learned my lesson that hubby isn't into decorated packages, I kept it plain jane. He prefers that I stick to requests or something disposable as they are just flat limited on space. Apparently the appreciation of pizzaz is just a me thing. He just throws it all away and could care less.  Sentiment is nice, but share it in an email. Gotcha, over and out!

***For significant others who DO appreciate decor and presentation - I think it would be fun to include party favors, a mini pennant banner maybe out of felt and bakers twine, confetti, or print off pictures from the party on regular paper to line the box. ***

This week's request - beef jerky and trail mix, and of course the cake with a plastic fork!

I used a Betty Crocker Angel Food box mix...well because it was late, the kids were crabby, I finally had them in bed, I wanted to go to bed, plus I was tired and lazy.  Box mix it is.  I put a few drops of food coloring in, hoping to get a swirly rainbow-esque batter to hint at the Birthday boys layered rainbow cake. was okay, but not really what I was going for.  I couldn't help myself but at least dress up the jar with some ribbon before wrapping it up tight in grocery bags (next shopping trip I am stocking up on bubble wrap).

Done and Done!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Who is the Adult?

Case in Point #1
On the way to daycare we were jamming out to some rock'n B-I-N-G-O and Baa Baa Black Sheep (we are cool like that), and the Toddler starts jabbering.  So I turn down the dial and am promptly reprimanded.

"No, touching buttons Mommy, okay?  You know better, you don't play with buttons!  No No Mommy, no more touching buttons, you hear me?"

Loud and clear bud.

Case in Point #2
One morning as I was finishing changing the Big D's diaper I tapped his little diapered bum while saying "spank, spank, spank".  Baby found it funny and giggled....the Toddler did not find it funny AT ALL. I also took his toes and put them behind his ears, and tapped his nose with his toes (lord to be that flexible). 

Toddler: No Mommy, don't hit MY baby!
Me: Mommy is just playing with him honey, I didn't hit him. 
Toddler:   You don't spank MY baby, that hurts him.  No hurting my baby.
 Me:  He isn't hurt, see he is giggling, we are pretending.  See, its the same thing mommy did when you were little.
Toddler: Now you tell baby sorry Mommy, tell him sorry for hurting.
Me: I didn't hurt him, we were just playing.
Toddler: Mommy, tell baby sorry, tell baby sorry for hurting him...and go stand in corner.
Me:  I'm not going to stand in the corner.
Toddler:  Please tell baby sorry, you hurt him.  Tell baby sorry and stand in corner.  You hearing me mommy?  You hear what Josh say? Go stand in corner...I spank your butt!
Me:  No 
Toddler: You hear me, stand in corner then I spank your butt
Me: You don't tell mommy what to do, and you don't spank.
Toddler:  Mommy you being naughty, you need to listen to me.  I going to spank your butt. 
And he preceded to run over and apparently got distracted with the threatened spankings because he started tickling me and giggling.  Did he just use the distraction method on me?

Case in Point #3:
I tried to hit potty training hard this weekend.  It didn't go so well.  Saturday went great: I am an awesome Mom and have this down!  Sunday was a power struggle: we are making progress, not as easy as I was hoping but we can get there.  Monday it became clear: I am the loser in the war of the wills.

Not one successful trip to the toilet.  I think he was holding it all morning to torment me.  I put him in his daddies (big boy underwear) and thought any accidents would be uncomfortable.  Kid didn't care if he was wet, dry, dirty or free-balling.  5 minutes after a refusal to even try I let him go with a  "Okay, I am resetting the timer, because you don't have to go now, and it will remind us to try again later. When you are ready let Mommy know."  I notice the oh-so-familiar-smell wafting from his general direction and the suspicious odd shaped bump.

Me: Do we need to change underwear?

Toddler: No

Me: Lets go clean you up

Toddler: No
I ended up dragging/carrying him kicking and screaming to the changing table...where he held on to his messy undies with all his might.
Toddler: Stays on, stays on!
By the time I wrestled his dirty "daddies" off there was literally poop from his bum to his toes.  I was stressed out and snapped, I started yelling, threw away the underwear, the...uhmm...crap, and all.  Cleaned him up and stormed into the livingroom.  Feeling guilty for losing my cool, feeling frustrated from going from Super Awesome Potty Training Parent to Utter Failure I broke down and cried.

Toddler: You sad mommy?

Me: nodding my head

Toddler: You crying about baby or crying about Josh?

Me: Crying about yelling at you honey

Toddler: {kisses me on the forehead, wraps his arms around my neck and pats my back} "It's okay mommy"

Toddler: Mommy?

Me: yea

Toddler: You miss your Daddy?

Me: yes honey I miss Daddy

Toddler: Daddy misses us and loves us, It's okay mommy {with another hug}

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Long Weekend = Potty Training Boot Camp

As I have a 3 day weekend, I decided to get serious about potty training.  I used the kitchen timer and every hour on the hour Saturday morning we went to sit on the potty.  The Toddler always said he didn't have to go, but always did actually go.  We kept a pair of big boy underwear (which he calls "daddies") dry!  Until nap time, then I put him back in pull-ups, and as I ended up driving to the Big City he stayed in pull-ups, but did manage to have one semi-success at my sisters house.

Today I wasn't as strict, he ran in to use the bathroom once himself, refused to go once, then a half hour later told me he needed to.  So I stopped using the timer....which was a mistake.  We had several accidents, and less cooperation overall.  Although he did tell me 3 times, 2 of those times it was a little after the fact.  Sometimes he didn't tell me at all, and didn't even want changed. Apparently he is just as happy in wet underwear as dry underwear...or no underwear.  I think the problem was not having the seemed to work for both of us.

Tomorrow I will be the timer Nazi and it should help me remember when he needs to be taken in. I am going to take away his pull-ups except for nap-time and bedtime.  We plan on staying home, so I'm hoping for results like Saturday morning.

I have talked to my daycare, and she was down with pretty much the same plan of using a timer (and apparently he is using the potty for her better anyway) here is to hoping to have the Toddler completely potty trained by the end of June!

Have any tips or tricks to share?  Spot any flaws in my plan?

That's right Hubby, my ultimate plan is to have both boys trained by the time you get home!  It might be a little early goal for the Big D, but I am thinking it might be easier for him because he has big brother to copy.  The Toddler was originally interested and almost had himself trained at 19 months, but I wasn't ready with a newborn. (Totally still kicking myself now, I should have went with it) I'm thinking I'll give it a shot with the Big D about 3 months before your deployment ends.  Then you can have some quality time on the farm with your "Big Boys" and I will have some me time ;)

Wish me luck!

Last One

Okay, I promise this is my last post referencing the tragic end to my cellphone. Combined with a lack of sleep and the Droid X2 replacement phone being nearly identical to the Droid X original phone (when it was in its prime of course); I found this hilarious.

PS - It's okay if you don't find it as funny as I do...most people don't. (Unless they are sleep deprived)

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Photo Bomb 4

Dear Hubby,

If you are reading this you should know that I think the Big D's Birthday Post totally counts as a photo bomb. But more happened than just that one day in our little lives....not that I have many pictures to show for it.  My camera lens is busted, but I have a replacement on the way.

Tuesday I destroyed my  phone.  Relying on the kids for alarm clocks has given me some anxiety.  You just can't make me happy though, I worry about not having an alarm clock...the boys get me up at 5:00-30.

On Wednesday I had your mom pickup the Toddler from daycare. I left work early and took the Big D in for his 1 year checkup and shots.  Poor little guy still had an ear infection in the left ear, a low grade fever of 99.9, and a general crabby demeanor. The finger that took the brunt of the Great Door Slamming Incident (GDSI) of April 7th was looking closer to falling point is the kid looked rough!  But, I did enjoy visiting with your mom afterwards at the farm.

As for the Big D's stats:
  • 21 pounds 9 ounces (30th percentile) 
  • 30 inches tall (40th percentile) 
  • 18 1/2 inch noggin circumference (70-75th percentile)
We got the go ahead from the doctor to move to forward facing.  I asked about the extended rear facing until 2 years, but she said she would go ahead and turn him around.  So next time I am in the Big City I will pick up another one like the Toddler has....and feel jealous the kids have more cup holders than I do.

Today - I got a working phone again! Whoot Whoot! I loved getting to hear from you. Highlight of my day and the Toddler's.

Other news of the week, the Big D's fingernail finally fell off Friday. AND IT RAINED!  In fact it is still raining, I'm loving it...and I'm sure your crops are too. Now to figure out what we are going to do with the rest of our Memorial Day Weekend. 

We are all so proud of you honey, and love you very much!

The Toddler showing the Big D he has a planet on his highchair

A close up of "the planet"

As long as it doesn't interfer with my supper...I don't care

Yum Yum, PB&J

Almost bedtime

As you can see my precious models were thirsty.

I have mastered the sippy cup, and mom packed away my bottles.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Did You Know?

***Disclaimer: this one isn't funny or upbeat***

How is it I can cry myself to sleep at night because I want nothing more than to hear your voice? Did you know that your absence can actually bring physical pain?

How is it when I get a phone call from you, when I wasn't expecting to be able to hear from you, it brings me to tears?

I knew this would/will be hard.  I also thought as the days ticked by it would be a little isn't.
Did you know as the days slowly crawl by it gets harder?

I'm trying to stay strong, I'm trying to fight the emotions and the lonely.  Its hard, though I'm sure no where near as hard as what you are doing.  At least at the end of the day I have our boys to hold.
What do you have for comforts?

Do you have the support I do?

Are you getting enough sleep?  I no longer sleep, but for different reasons I'm sure.

Did you know most nights I am on Skype until at least midnight, just in case you might get on?  When I finally do go to bed I hold my phone and stare at it for hours, just in case you might call.

Are you getting enough to eat?  Did you know I actually miss cooking for you? For all those nights of leftovers (or frozen pizza) because I didn't feel like making supper...I regret them.

Does the busy keep your mind occupied?  Do you ever feel overwhelmed when you are alone?

Do you even have any time alone?

I told myself a small silver lining would be cooking whatever I want, all the foods you don't like...they all taste like crap.  I find myself making your favorites and missing you even more.

I can't believe I am admitting this but I even miss:
  • tripping over your boots all over the house
  • picking up stray socks
  • cleaning up whiskers out of the sink
  • watching you read your book, when the Toddler wants you to read his to him
  • calling to ask when you are coming home from the farm
  • you waking up the boys to tell them goodnight, and starting the bedtime fight all over again
  • you waking me up because I am snoring
  • fighting over the blankets
  • all the little trivial things I whined about before you left
I miss you, and this is hard.  I want nothing more than for you to be home.

I wanted to send care packages full of love, and I don't even know what to send. I had plans of fun thoughtful additions, so far its just been requests thrown in a box. I have trouble actually putting one together, it is just another reminder we are apart.

I know your sacrifice is greater than mine, but I still find myself having a pity party.

What's going on in your mind and heart?

Do know how much I love you?

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

True Confession #43

Confession, when I am home alone I turn into a paranoid sissy.  For real, ask my Hubby about the time I called him almost crying to come home because I was sure someone was hiding in our basement. My reasoning? I couldn't find a certain toy.  Cuz' you all know murderous thieves sneak into people's houses to steal baby toys, and then camp out in the basement. Not the guns in the glass gun safe, jewelry, power tools, big screen...or anything portable with value.  Nope, the hot item on the black market these days is a $10 play gym from Wal-Mart.

 I wasn't brave enough to even look in the basement, so I took both boys to my room and we holed up until Hubby came home....and he checked the basement and then found the missing toy in the nursery in plain sight. (He may have also looked at me like I was crazy).  Don't judge, being alone makes my nerves jittery and my imagination run wild...a wee little bit.

Anyway, I came home Monday on my lunch break and discovered the bathroom door was locked....obviously another murderous thief! (For a small town, there sure a lot of those). I jiggled the door knob, my heart racing and blood pumping.  Then I knocked on the door and let out a feeble "He-hello?!"

No Answer

Well duh, what thief would answer?  They would lose the element of surprise!

Then I stopped, told myself I was over reacting.  Knocked again just to be sure.  Went to the kitchen and grabbed a toothpick and picked the lock.  Room Empty....*deep breath*...oh yea, the Toddler was playing with the door this morning before we left..*deep breath, calming down*..I got after him, then he came out and shut the door..*heavy sigh*...I suppose, he could have locked the door by accident.

Nah, totally a murderous thief who made a Mission Impossible getaway. Had to use the bathroom, forgot to rob us, and then made a quick break for it because he wasn't feeling so murdery afterall.  Maybe he skipped breakfast and wasn't up for the sight of blood?

I'm on to you!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Smartphone VS Highway

In case you have ever found yourself pitting random everyday items against each other in a grudge match to the death and wondering which would win...but the items aren't glamorous or notable enough for Myth Busters...this post is for you.

I can't tell you how many times I have personally have wondered in a battle royale to the bitter end, which would come out the victor?
A Droid X Smartphone traveling at 70mph, or the Highway.

Turns out: the Highway, hands down, no competition.  You are welcome, I took one for the team to bring  an end to your curiosity.

I was loading the kids into the car and buckling them into their car-seats and set my phone on the roof of the car.  I ran back in the house to grab a banana for breakfast on the road, jumped in and away we went.  I had just got out of city limits and was picking up speed when I saw something black slide across the back window in my rear view window.  Crappola! I forgot my phone.  I pulled over, and then decided I better get the kids to daycare and I would look more on my way back to get to work and made note of the approach.

I asked my daycare to call me in about 15 minutes, hoping it fell into the grass on the side of the road and I could locate it from the ringer...instead it was in the middle of road, with the battery about a foot away, and missing the back cover.

Epic Fail

Really wishing we had a home phone right about now.  My only silver lining is I talked to the Hubby last night and he said they had some heavy training coming up and I probably won't hear from him for a week. I also have a well baby appointment in the big city for the Big D, so I will probably stop by Verizon and pickup a new phone. (Yay shots!)

Honestly I feel like a teenager who has been grounded.  Is it normal to have withdrawal symptoms form a phone?  Cripes a few posts back I was whining my son could operate it better than me.

Here is to hoping:

  • My back-up-alarms (aka: kiddos) don't sleep in tomorrow
  • We have phone insurance
  • They can transfer over all the picture, contacts, and text messages ( I read everything the Hubby has sent me every night before I go to sleep.)
  • It's a quick and cheap fix.
  • The new one is indestructible...wife proof, that should really be the new standard of durability!
  • Oooh...and has an easy learning curve

The Big D's Big Day

I can't believe my baby boy has already turned ONE!  Where did the time go?   We celebrated his actual birthday at home on Saturday, just me and the boys.  The three of us hung out, cuddled, read books, ate crumbled layers of cake that didn't turn out...

We Skyped with Daddy, and got a couple phone calls full of Happy Birthday Well Wishes.  Hearing from Daddy was definitely the high point of his day.  The sound of his voice or a picture of him brings smiles instantaneously.

We had the big party on Sunday.  I used one of the boys' favorite books the Very Hungry Caterpillar for a quasi theme.

The paper latern caterpillar I thought was fun. The pennant banner I thought was going to be 2-3" flags, ended up being much larger...with 100ft of it.  It still worked to add some color though. (Anyone plan on opening a used car lot?  Have I got a deal for you!)

I found lollipops like the ones in the book. I put out fruit (originally it was going to be the fruit in the book, but I ended up just using what I had on hand: bananas, apples, apricots, strawberries, pears, and mangoes)

I made a seven  five layer rainbow cake.  Completely amature job, but I thought it turned out okay.

The birthday boy tentatively poked at his ice cream, grinning at the cold, soft texture.  He would poke his finger in and then taste it...once it passed approval he was two handed mauling the ice cream and cake letting it ooze between his fingers! Messy texture-y sugary fun.

As always, it is the people at the party that make the party.  Not the cake, not the food, not the decorations, and not even the presents.  I am blessed to have so many wonderful people in our family...and a lovely young lady, who is crazy enough to be joining our family in August. 

The Big D loves his future Auntie!

He also loves his Aunt B!

My beautiful niece and the birthday boy.

Uncle D & Cousin G

Cousin C, he is the boys' hero!

The Toddler playing with a couple Uncles and a future Aunt

Getting some love from Grandma

Grandpa telling stories

The Toddler LOVED the lollipops! (he thinks food DOES make a party)

The rivalry begins...before the 1st gift has even been unwrapped.

The Big D won...because, well, it was HIS present.

We had 5 out of 7 grandparents, all of the Aunts and Uncles, Cousins, and even a couple of Great Aunts (whom the title totally fits, they truly are Great!)

And a goodtime was had by all! Thank you to everyone for making a little boy's day extra special. Even you camera shy party guests.

PS- A special thanks to my sister for taking all the pictures, as my camera was out of commission.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Photo Bomb 3

Dear Hubby

This week, you being gone has really starting sinking in for me.  I'm not going to lie, it is lonely. To keep my mind occupied I have tried to have our little family stay busy.  We had quite a bit of couch time this week though.  We read lots of books, we cuddled...and we discovered the Toddler can operate my cellphone and call people. Of course you already know that, you are his favorite person to call.

Tonight he told me "I want to talk to Daddy's face".  After checking Skype, we settled for hearing your voice on the Car's book you recorded.  He now has it memorized and reads along word for word with you.  Afterwards he said "Daddy is really good reading my book"

After the boys go to bed I have been chipping away at Spring Cleaning.  I have also managed to put together 20 freezer meals this week, and have been working on making some decorations for the Big D's birthday has kinda been like nesting expect I'm not pregnant.

Sorry I don't have a better variety of pictures this week.  I am having problems with our camera, but any way here is a peek into one of our days at home.

We love you forever and always. You are in our prayers constantly.

Up to no good!

Does this look like a face that would get into trouble?

I'm not up to anything, just chill-axing mom.

What?! You don't believe me?

I don't think she has gotten over the whole breaking the eggs on the carpet thing yet.