Sunday, April 29, 2007

Lovely Spring Sunday

How happy is the S clan that the weather is FINALLY warm and dry? Take a look at the slide show below and judge for yourself. The evening was supposed to end with a trip to our favorite ice cream spot, but a chilly wind kicked up and we were forced to retreat to our natural habitat.



A question for all you experienced moms out there. How long to you allow the thoughtfully collected cups and glasses full of weed flower bouquets that your children have bestowed upon you sit around? I just cannot bring myself to get rid of them until they are quite old and dried out, but I am just a tad tired of having cups full of mud and sneeze inducing weeds sitting around the house. The fact that I accidentally knocked one over on the formerly fabulous purse that Rachael brought me from New York has NOTHING to do with my asking of this question. Really, it doesn't. sniffle whimper

PS Esther is not nearly as grumpy as she appears in that last pic. I just caught her at a bad moment.

PPS Anna does appear to be feeling better today. She is still quite rashy and moderately fussy, but her appetite for solid food has improved, thank goodness. We will visit with the doctor and get a new antibiotic prescrip tomorrow.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Bowling, Amoxicillin Allergy, 4th Birthdays...Cosmic Connection or Amazing Coincidence?



On Isaac's 4th birthday he was on a round of amoxicillin for a really stubborn ear infection. That morning he woke up covered in a horrible, itchy rash. We planned to take him bowling that day but ended up heading to the pediatrician to find out that he was allergic to the amoxicillin.

Today is Nathan's 4th birthday. We planned to go bowling at the exact same bowling alley. Anna is on a round of amoxicillin to treat a bacterial infection. Guess who woke up covered in a terribly, itchy red rash? Or rather, guess who was up ALL NIGHT LONG, fussing and covered in an itchy red rash?

Poor sweet baby, she is just so miserable. The infection is still causing her to run fevers, she is uncomfortable from congestion, she is itchy, she is hung over from Benadryl, she is tired because she cannot sleep. SIGH I feel so bad for her, it is just so much worse for little ones because you cannot explain to them why they are so miserable and why you cannot make it better.

So anyway, is there a cosmic connection here? IF you are planning to go bowling on a 4th birthday while taking amoxicillin, will you necessarily end up allergic? OR does the amoxicillin allergy on a 4th birthday make you want to go bowling????

Makes ya think doesn't it?

Despite the misery of his baby sister and sleep deprived mommy, Nathan had a lovely 4th birthday complete with bowling, lunch with singing wait staff, a movie with daddy all to himself, dinner on the deck, backyard soccer with daddy and capped off with a double feature camp out on the family room floor. What more can a little boy ask for?

Friday, April 27, 2007

HAPPY BIRTHDAY NATHAN!!!


HAPPY BIRTHDAY BABY BOY!!! We love you so much!

We could have done without the twirling of the mud covered earth worm above your head in the living room and I am afraid that we will have to deduct Aunt Esther's psyciatrist bill from your future allowance...but other than that...

You are a delightful, kind hearted, fun loving little boy and we are so blessed to have you in our lives!

You have come so far since the day you were born. I can finally look back on that day and focus on you and not on how sick you were. It is a great feeling. I love you sweet boy!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Peeved

It has recently come to my attention that there are those in the world who seem to think that my kids are spoiled.

Really?

Well, let's explore that shall we.

For the record, I really do not care one way or the other what the general populace thinks of my parenting skills. This particular issue I see as an attack on both my parenting skills AND my kids, therefore my need to address it.

I have a few trusted sources who I will ask when I have questions, and I frequently do. Jesse and I realize that we are not perfect parents and have a lot to learn.

HOWEVER...

I take serious issue with the word spoiled when used in reference to my children. Many of you know or will soon find out that Jesse and I are intensely defensive of our kids and will go to great lengths to protect them. Spoiled, by definition, implies that something is ruined, no good, worthless, essentially trash.

For the record, the next time someone stands in my home as an invited guest and utters this word in reference to my children, said person will quickly find themselves standing dazed and confused on the sidewalk outside my home.

To answer a few lingering questions:

Are my kids loved? Absolutely?
Do my kids get a lot of attention? Absolutely?
Do my kids have a lot of toys? Yes they do, more than they really need.
Are my kids home schooled? Yes they are.
Is Anna nursing beyond a year? Yes she is.

Do I feel the need to explain any of the above to anyone? No I do not. Frankly, these choices are nobody's business but Jesse's, mine and our children. If you feel the need to object or discuss, I am happy to have those conversations when approached in a respectful manner. We know that we are not perfect parents and that there is always something new that we can learn as we travel the perilous journey of child rearing.

For those of you who are still concerned, rest assured that a significant amount of daily time in the S house is devoted to discussions regarding manners, behavior and a general respect for our fellow mankind, even when mankind chooses to be disrespectful to us. Our kids do not get a new toy every time they go to the store, they do not get a sugary snack 12 times a day, they are not allowed to beat on each other, friends or strangers, they do not run wild, they have rules, they have discipline and as God is my witness I WILL teach Nathan to chew with his mouth closed if it is the very last thing I ever do!

In the future, let's all be sure not to use our own insecurities or envy as an excuse to attack another human being. Are my kids more privileged than some kids? Absolutely. Are there kids in the world who are more privileged than mine? Again, absolutely! Does that mean that I automatically label more privileged kids as spoiled? No, I do not. Does that mean that I expect perfection from a more privileged child? Absolutely NOT!

There you have it, my thoughts on this particular issue.

While all of the above is true, I ask you to also remember that first and foremost my kids are just that, KIDS! They WILL make mistakes, they WILL have trouble sharing, they WILL get into fights, they WILL say words that they are not supposed to, they WILL demand toys and snacks that they do not need and cannot have, for cryin out loud they are KIDS! Please do not demand perfection from my kids or yours. They will learn as they grow but they need room to make mistakes and a guide to help them learn from those mistakes.

We now return to your regularly scheduled joy and mirth of the S Family Chronicles.

Monday, April 23, 2007

PARTY!!






A grand time was had by all who attended Anna's first birthday and Nathan's 4th birthday party this past weekend. Many, MANY thanks to all of you who generously gave your time to share in our kids' special day.

Included are a few pics of the birthday boy and girl with their lovely Nana made cakes and their pinatas. Anna was not at all thrilled with the idea of smacking a dangling object with a bat. She did, however, enthusiastically dive into her cake as you can see in this short video.



Check out the fabulous D family blog, link to the left and scroll down one post, to see a picture of what attending a party at our house did to little Willow! She is so darn cute!!! If you visit, be sure to leave a comment telling Liz how adorable and well behaved her kids are, she likes that sort of thing. ;)

Thanks again everyone!

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Can we stop with all the growing up nonsense???



Seriously, I have NEVER felt such mixed emotions in all my life. I am SO proud of my boys. They are such (usually) well behaved, (usually) polite, (usually) kind hearted little guys. They miss Jesse and I terribly when one of us is gone for a while, they adore their baby sister, they are funny, they laugh, they play games, they are creative, it just goes on and on. I would not change them if I could. I would not zap them back to infancy, yet I feel so sad as they grow and change and learn new things. I don't remember signing up for this part of parenthood. I clearly remember being excited about babies and changing diapers and first birthdays and spit up and all that, but I was totally unprepared for this part. They should really improve the marketing of this whole parenting gig.

What has sparked this discussion? Isaac lost ANOTHER tooth!! He looks so darn cute and is so proud of himself! We had a celebratory breakfast of pancakes with candy faces and yes, the tooth fairy DID come AGAIN. No, she did not bring $20 this time, so relax!

Jesse is playing at the Greeley Jazz Festival today and Anna is asleep, so I must play Candy Land with my boys now.

PS Doesn't snaggle tooth look CUTE???

PPS More new pics on the photog's site.
If you would like the link to view the pics, please e-mail me.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

You know you are a parent when...

...you stumble down the stairs, bleary eyed and yawning because your daughter is cutting teeth and had two shots and therefore felt the need to wake up every 45 minutes all night long, desperately in need of a cup of hot tea, but instead of shrieking in terror or vomiting into the sink, you simply shove the bowl full of dirt and live worms that your boys left on the kitchen counter the night before out of the way so that you can reach your tea bags.

Parenting test that I have failed:

1. I cannot pull out loose teeth. Isaac has begged me to pull out his most recent loose tooth and I just cannot do it. I CAN'T DO IT PEOPLE! I tried, I really did. Esther gave it a try and I had to leave the room I was so grossed out. It will fall out on its own when it is ready!

2. I cannot drink anything that has baby/toddler backwash. The very idea makes me gag.

3. I cannot clean up vomit. My poor, darling husband gets this chore each and every time.

4. I cannot eat something that, even though offered in love by one of my dear children, is slobbered on, mushy, dirty, etc. My mom informs me that this is THE parenting skill to have, but I just can't do it! Someone better call social services.

5. I cannot allow a nose to run or a child to wipe a runny nose with a sleeve or hand. Snot is second only to vomit when ranking bodily secretions in order of disgust.

So there you have it. If this were the parenting SATs I think I would score a combined 700 or something.

Isaac and Nathan's pics are up on the photog's website, VERY cute! There are still more to come so everyone get to work on those second mortgages so that we can pay for them! ;)

If you would like the link to view the pics, please e-mail me.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Anna's 1 year pics

Prepare yourself people, we are talking almost painful cute factor here.

These are just Anna's for now. We also did pics of the boys and pics of all three of them, they are just not posted yet.

We will order a copy of all three of the kids for family, if you want additional pics you can order them directly from the photographer by e-mailing her. Her prices are VERY reasonable.

If you would like the link to view the pics, please e-mail me.

Petite Flower





Our baby girl really is quite the delicate little princess. At her 1 year checkup she weighs 19 pounds 5 ounces and is 28.5 inches long. That is 25th percentile for both height and weight. The boys were never under the 70th percentile for either category! Her head size, however, is in the 90th percentile. This explains why I often had trouble getting some of those darling little 12 month sized outfits over her noggin!

Big birthday party is this coming weekend, but I am a stickler for having some kind of festivity on the actual birthday. The pics are from her Chipotle/Not Just Yogurt birthday celebration. She was treated to her very first banana split which she LOVED. She also received her very first cell phone and her first tea set, both of which she adores.

HAS EVERYONE FILED THEIR TAXES????

Sunday, April 15, 2007

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANNA!




You are one year old today darling baby girl. Daddy and I are so proud of you and so happy that you have blessed our family. The pics and video you see here are from our birthday celebrations yesterday.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

This could be the big one....

Anna turns 1 tomorrow. Esther, get out the notecards, buy a LOT of chocolate and clear out the Starbucks on the corner, this could take all weekend.

PS Isaac has another very loose tooth. sniffle whimper

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Scrapblogging ROCKS!

Yes I AM a dork and yes I am well aware of that fact. BUT, at least I am easily entertained, eh?

I have added a link to our scrap blog on the left side of your screen. I also added a new page in celebration of Nathan's upcoming birthday and removed the username and password so you can just click right to it.

I have 2 recipes that I need to add too. So much blogging to do and so little time! ;)

Because I Needed Another Distraction!

Well, I think that the 25 minutes of free time I used to have each week just got booked solid.

http://www.scrapblog.com/viewer/viewer.aspx?sbId=3214 (You will need to copy and paste the URL, Blogger is being stupid and will not let me link.)

e-mail: cherithanne@gmail.com
password: jesse

I absolutely stink at scrap booking. I have managed to commit only the first 3 months of Isaac's life to an actual scrapbook. The rest of my pictures have been carelessly tossed into totes, awaiting some day in the distant future when I will have time for them. A friend of mine actually took pity on me and has offered to do Anna's scrapbook for me.

But THIS I can do. Quick, easy and no messes to clean up when I am done!! An internet junkie paradise!!!

(Yes I realize that I am pathetic and YES ESTHER it is after midnight. Leave me alone!)

Monday, April 9, 2007

As promised....


Thanks Mary!!!

Ask not for whom the bell tolls....


...because it is probably just one of these cats prowling around the house. WHY do indoor cats need to wear bells? All I hear all night long is the sound of those stupid bells.

Additional Misc yet Vitally Important Information

The poll results are in!! Vomit is more disgusting and we should NOT cut Anna's hair. Interesting, the poll results mirror my thoughts! ;)

I have lots of fun video to share, but at the moment it is on our digital video camera and I don't know how to get it onto the computer. I will work on that ASAP. In the meantime, I have created a new poll for your amusement. Be careful with this one, you would become Esther's #1 nemesis if you vote incorrectly.

I know I promised you a pic of Anna's Easter dress and I WILL get you one, I just neglected to take any on my camera so I am waiting for one of my sisters to e-mail me some.

For now you can entertain yourself with this video that I DID take on the digi cam. This is the boys hunting Easter eggs in our house on Easter morning. Um...I did not realize what a mess the place was until I was already taping so let's call this a window into the reality of the S house. If you come over and it is super clean, that usually means that I cleaned it because you were coming over. This is what it looks like the rest of the time.

At the start of the video you will hear Isaac obsessing over the welfare of a dog. This may confuse you as most of you know that we do not actually own a dog (thank God almighty). Rest assured that there will not be a dog in this house anytime soon, he is worried about a stray that followed us home from Jesse's parents house. This was a particularly mean dog, it actually came up on the porch and barked at me through the screen door.



If you ever happen to be in downtown Colorado Springs, you MUST stop and visit a charming little tea shop called the Catbird Seat. Darling little place with FABULOUS food! If you are a guy, don't go unless you are seriously in touch with your feminine side. I do not know the actual address, but hopefully Liz will be kind enough to respond to this post and leave it for anyone who is interested.

Jesse is sick with a wicked sinus infection, his first such experience. He has been pretty miserable all weekend. We were knocking on the doctor's door first thing this morning. This is going to sound odd, but I have this overwhelming feeling of serenity regarding his illness. It is so wonderful to know that he is sick, but that he will NOT have to visit an emergency room, potentially be admitted to the hospital, require an ambulance trip, etc. Never thought I could be thankful and smile because a loved one was miserable and in agonizing pain, but here we are. Go figure.

We are gearing up for two huge birthdays in the S house. Anna turns 1 on the 15th and Nathan turns 4 on the 28th. We are doing a joint party on the 22nd. If you are local, you are invited. Well heck, even if you are not local consider yourself invited, but we are not paying airfare or hotel. ;) Nathan was rather short changed on his birthday last year due to Anna's arrival so we are doing the best we can to make him feel very special this year. He marches around the house on an hourly basis reciting the names of all the people on his guest list. Such a cutie pie!!

I don't know what else I could possibly write about so this is a good place to end. Spring break is over and we are all back to work tomorrow! Have a great week!

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Never say Never!





This is for all the times we swore we would NEVER end up as one of THOSE couples. We will NEVER break down and get a mini van, there are other options, mini vans are for old boring people, etc, etc.

Jesse and I have officially joined the ranks of old boring people! Frankly, we could not be more pleased with ourselves. We sacrificed our illusions of youth, but we gained a whole bunch of convenience.

It has been a busy few days in the S house! Obviously there is the new car, but that lead to another HUGE milestone for our little Anna. Today Anna went for her first ride, forward facing, in her new big girl car seat! Traditionally we make the S children wait until their first birthday, but practicality won out in this case. She was not quite sure about the whole thing at first, but she warmed up fairly quickly. In the event that you object to this particular car seat, garish as it appears, you should know that Anna selected this one herself. We sat her in her various options and this one earned the biggest smile.




We also visited the aquarium today. All in all, it was not a great choice. A local radio station was sponsoring an egg hunt and it was PACKED. I did manage to get the video clips below. Nathan is now sporting a lovely sting ray bite on two of his fingers, but I think he will live.





In other news, we have now complained to the nearby air force base AND to the international airport about the late night air traffic. I am 100% sure that this will do us no good at all, but hey! it made us feel a little bit better.

Easter is tomorrow and we are all excited to hunt eggs and spend time with family. The Easter bunny is bringing Anna her very first My Little Pony. If you could have witnessed the utter confusion of her poor parents, standing baffled and confused in that unfamiliar aisle with all the pink and purple and frills and bows, you would have laughed until you cried. The boys are receiving pirate stuff and super hero action figures. We hope this fits somewhat with the Easter story, given that Isaac's reply to Jesse's telling of the Easter story was, "WOW! God and Jesus must be the most powerful good guys in the whole universe!" I am somewhat new at this parenting thing, but it IS normal for little boys to view the entire world in terms of good guys and bad guys, right?

Stay tuned for Anna's unbelievable Easter dress, hand made by my darling mother. You will all be placing orders for next year, I promise!!

Oh yes and in answer to your question Esther, I DO carry the digi cam around in a holster! I mean seriously, do you BLAME me?? ;)

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Indicator of Normalcy


In any other house this might seem strange. In the S house, this is merely an indicator that all is well and good and serene.

IS there a better indicator of normalcy than a bug house containing a live spider handcuffed to the stair banister?

Monday, April 2, 2007

The End of a Long and Busy Day


Just had to pop back on and share this picture. This is how I found my boys curled up at about 8:30 pm this evening.

Easter eggs, allergies, a virus and thou



Evening all! We had a lovely first half of the day dying Easter eggs at my mom's house. Definitely the best part of the day, the rest has been abysmal. Anna has Nathan's head cold and will not let me more than 3 inches away from her. She wants to nurse for comfort but her nose is so stuffed up that she can't so she just cries non-stop. Poor baby. I am utterly miserable fighting with my usual spring allergies. BLAH.

I finally got her down for a nap this afternoon. She slept for an hour only to be awakened by the God awful racket of jets flying so low that I believe we are now missing shingles from our roof. Someday someone is going to have to explain to me how national security is dependent on jets from a nearby air force base flying so flipping low over my house in the middle of the day. We live literally at the edge of decent civilization! There are miles and miles of open space to the east of us, WHY must these jets fly over populated areas????

Ok I am done with that particular rant now.

And now for the reasons why Jesse and I deserve the worst parents on the planet award!

#1: We forgot to feed Anna dinner last night. We are trying to cut down on her daily nursing and get her to eat more solid food, but sometimes we forget to actually offer it to her. She did not let us know that we had neglected her until around midnight when she would not stop fussing. Eventually we figured out our error and sheepishly brought her downstairs for something to eat. She is such a sweetie pie, she wolfed down her food and went right back to sleep.

#2: I did not communicate the intended purpose of the 5 dollar bill on the microwave, so Jesse grabbed it and spent it on screws for the swing set. It was the cash I was saving for Isaac's tooth. The only other cash we had in the house was a 20 and neither of us wanted to go to 7-11 at midnight. So yes, we left our child $20 for a fallen baby tooth. I have already been scolded severely as to the repercussions should this information hit the streets, but rest assured that the secret is safe. Isaac identifies ALL paper money as 1 dollar, so he has absolutely no idea that he is sitting on a virtual gold mine. I will switch the 20 in his wallet for a nice 5 dollar bill this evening after he goes to bed.

Anna has decided that I have typed long enough so I will leave you with pics from today as well as a video that shows off our nephew Sammy's new linguistic skills. He just got home from Italy.

The pic at the top is a rare photo that actually includes me. 3 cyber cookies to the person who swipes the pic, enlarges it and then connects the bruises and scars on my face to find the hidden pic of Fidel Castro.



Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Sunday, April 1, 2007

New Bloggy Fun!

I have added some lists of favorite recipes and cleaning tips.

DISCLAIMER!!! I AM NOT MARTHA STEWART!! These are recipes that are semi-healthy, yet quick and easy and cleaning tips that I have actually used.

I have also added two polls. Vote on whether or not we should cut Anna's hair and help my friend Liz and I settle a seriously hot topic debate.

Isaac's First Tooth


Well, my darling baby boy lost his fist baby tooth early this morning. I am so proud of him, he handled it so well! He is all set for the tooth fairy to visit tonight.

Isn't it awfully early? I have no experience in this, but he is only 5! I thought teeth did not start falling out until 7 or 8? shrug

Those of you who have little boys, how often do you, or do you even, clean their rooms? I like my house clean, I don't like to find stinky surprises, and the boys don't really like to play in there when it is messy, but for pity sake those boys can mess that room up FAST. When they were younger and thought it was lots of fun to dump everything off of the shelves for no particular reason, I did once bag up all their stuff and lock it in the laundry room for a few weeks. This is different, they don't mess it up purely to make a mess, they are playing and they just take a bunch of stuff out and don't think to put it back. We are working on the idea that you clean up one thing before you get another out, but that is going to take time. I am so flipping busy with work, Anna, meals, laundry, etc during the day that I just cannot follow them around making sure that they are putting all their toys away. We do have cleanup time in the evenings before bed, but by the time we get to their room we are usually exhausted. Every so often I go up there and clean it up so that it sparkles. Within 24 horus it is a disaster again. How do you deal with this? Do you keep cleaning it or just leave it a mess? I DO take them up there with me and have them help clean it and they ARE getting better, but I am thinking that this pattern will continue until they get a bit older.

In case you are wondering, the facial from hell is still causing me problems. It turns out that she not only caused me pain on my face but she also left her mark on my neck. The brief massage that she gave me was WAY too deep and I have nasty bruises. This is probably not her fault. Since the car accident you can barely touch my neck without leaving a bruise. She did do a great job with my eyebrows, I have to give her credit for that.

My poor face, however, will likely bare the marks of this torture for quite a while. When she reassured me that, despite the excruciating pain I would not have any bruises or marks on my face, SHE LIED!! I have swollen spots, bright red patches, you name it, I have it. At this point I am farily certain that I would not be able to land a date with the elephant man, assuming the poor man was still alive. You might want to offer some sympathy to Jesse, after all he does have to live with me. If you happen to pass me on the street, look away for I am hideous.

Nathan seems to be getting sick, poor baby.

Can someone please explain to me WHY we got these cats?

Spring Break officially starts tomorrow!!!