"I love you and want for you all things that make you happiest; and I guess you, not I, are the one who knows best what those things are."

Friday, February 25, 2011

Let Kids Be Kids

A few weeks ago a fellow mom put out a call to friends for information about local preschools.  Her daughter is 16 months old.  She stated that since her child was coming of preschool age she wanted to start researching schools for next year.  All I could think was, "you're child is not any where close to preschool age!"

Having squandered that initial response I simply ignored the request for information.  However, as the responses came in from a host of other moms - I realized how much I am in the minority when I think that 2 years old is not preschool age.  Isn't 2 year old preschool little more than daycare?  Can it really be that a child needs to attend preschool at age 2?  or 3?  or 4 for that matter?  I just can't imagine that John will get anything out of  "preschool" at the ripe age of 2 that he can't get in my living room, kitchen and back yard.  We count the trains in his favorite book, sort silverware into the proper place in the drawer, catch colored fish in his fishing game, watch bugs and worms in the dirt by the swing set and do art projects at the dining room table. Really - is there anything else I'm missing?  Social interaction I suppose.  Oh wait - we have weekly playgroups, tumbling at the Y and storytime at the library. 


Don't get me wrong.  I plan to send my children to preschool the year before they start kindergarten.  For John - that will mean starting preschool just 2 months before he turns 5.  For Nathan - a few months after he turns 4 (unless we hold him off a year - that should make other mothers cringe!)

I know many of the moms who responded to my friends initial email have 2 or 3 children.  They use "preschool" as a short break from mommyhood or a chance to run errands without children in tow.  A few have a child in preschool because that child needs a special service of some type.  Some of the mom's started their oldest in school because they were expecting a baby to arrive shortly and wanted to have some quiet "baby-only" time.  But this isn't the case with the mom in question.  She has just one precious, perfect little girl and as far as I know (and I'm pretty sure I know) she isn't expecting another any time soon.  So I'm just not sure what her rush to get her daughter into preschool is.....

At one point in time I considered that I should be doing "more" with John but then I remembered that these days are so short.  A few precious and golden years where kids are asked to be nothing more than kids.  No homework, no sports teams, no over-crammed schedules.  Just kids - playing with play-doh, cooking in the kitchen and jumping on the couch.  When I have lapses and think I need to do more I always pull up the same post by a fellow blogger that always helps set my mind straight again.  In due time, my children will attend preschool.  They will learn their numbers, letters, colors, and much more.  But for now - I'm happy letting my kids be kids.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Can You Keep Up?

After a week of illnesses that had us locked in the house we've come out the other end.  For the record: I thought it was questionable at a few points.

1.  We got a few things done around the house that have been on the never ending to-do list.  They were little things, but they were the things that always seem to get pushed to the bottom of the list.  My wonderful husband hung Nathan's name in the boys room.  (We had the letters for several months before I finally painted them and now they've sat for weeks on end before we finally hung them up).  We put up two great picture holders that we got for Christmas and even put pictures in them.  I worked at cleaning off the end of the dining room table (that's a huge hotspot for us - things just gather there).  Now - this week's goal is to finish getting the house put together so that as the weather warms up we can start entertaining more!

2.  I did my due diligence when I couldn't find a magnet.  Yes, a magnet.  I caught Nathan chewing on a clothes pin that (used to) have a magnet on it.  Since I couldn't find the magnet in question anywhere in the house I called the pediatrician.  Good news though!  After an xray of Nathan's GI system we have determined that there are "no metallic foreign objects" in his little body.  *Hopefully he doesn't have any other "foreign objects" that I don't know about!*

3.  I took a little time for mommy earlier this week.  With good weather at the end of last week I got the boys outside in the jogging stroller a couple times and walked some laps around the neighborhood.  Exercise feels good (even if those hills did make me a little sore) and helps me sleep at night.  Then, since Matt had Monday off I took the opportunity to get a much needed massage.  Between being pregnant, nursing, carrying a 21 lb baby and 30 lb toddler, and the general stresses of life , my neck and shoulders were in bad shape.  After a 1 hour massage on my back, shoulders and neck - I felt much much better.  However, Tuesday my neck and shoulders were sore from all the deep tissue rubbing, poking and prodding.  (But it was the good type of sore, again!) 

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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Modus Ponens

If my husband is out of town, then at least one of my children is running a fever.
My husband is out of town.
Therefore, at least one of my children is running a fever.
QED

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Valentine's Successes

Happy Belated Valentine's Day!  We've have several successes around here this week.  Some greater than others, but all successes nonetheless.  It's been another week without Matt around so I've been in the trenches on my own.  Maybe that's what makes the successes so great!

1.  Since Matt took Nathan to San Antonio for 4 days - I had 4 days with just John!  What a blessing!!  Our successes included playing together without having to worry about toys with little parts getting into a baby's mouth, burning energy at McDonald's playland without having to worry about where to safely set a not-quite-mobile baby, and getting in the hot tub without having to worry about a baby trying to drink the water with chemicals.  :)  OK - really I'm just bragging that I got I to play with my toddler without distraction for 4 days....

2.  I managed to cook a nice Valentine's Day dinner before Matthew left on his business trip.  We had crab legs, green beans, fresh baked bread, and apple crisp.  Then I gave him kisses and sent him on his way to Kansas City.  *sigh*  I miss my man!

3.  We (appear to) have survived some ridiculous virus/bug/cold/infection.  I say appear to because this is the first morning everyone is waking up (relatively) fever free.  John started with a croupy cough on Monday then woke up with 103 degree fever on Tuesday morning.  Nathan spent all day Tuesday throwing up everything I gave him thanks to the congestion that he (still) has.  I made doctors' appointments while John sat on the couch in his winter coat and hat because he was so cold (read as: had the chills from the fever and wouldn't let mommy take the coat off).  However, both boys were given a clean bill of health at the doctor's office and we were told that there is something nasty going around and to rest, get fluids and take Tylenol.  That's all fine and dandy until your toddler is standing in the kitchen, crying, shivering, and calling out "cold, cold."  Tuesday night John's fever got up to 104.8 (with both Tylenol and Motrin in him!) and he was mumbling in his sleep but when it finally broke at around 6:30AM - it seemed to stay down most the day (and by down I mean 101).  Nathan has stopped throwing everything up - but has gotten his brother's croupy cough now.  PLEASE OH PLEASE don't let this drop into their chests!!!

Good successes this week.  Today we get John's psychological/behavioral evaluation.  Hopefully we'll figure something out with this therapist so that we can continue to get John the services he needs through the Early Intervention program.  I'm hopeful!

Share your successes over at Faith and Family Live!  
We love to hear how everyone does each week!  
We celebrate the big and the small!
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Saturday, February 12, 2011

Where's My Brah-Bo?

Matthew took Nathan to San Antonio on Thursday.  They return tomorrow.  When John woke up on Thursday morning he came into our room, grabbed the video monitor like he always does and turned it on to check on his brother.  When Nathan didn't appear on the monitor he immediately flipped the switch to his bed, then back to the crib, and then pointed to the screen with a confused look on his face.  After a few seconds he smiled from ear to ear and pointed to our bed and said "brah-bo" (brother).  He ran around to the far side of the bed and looked for Nathan again...but he wasn't in mommy's bed either.....

After we established that Dad and Brother had gone to work together - Thursday went pretty well.  So did Friday.  But today - John is really missing his "brah-bo."  He's been calling down the basement stairs for him and has repeatedly gone to the bedroom to look in the crib for Nathan.  I guess 3 days without your brother is just a little too long for a two year old. 

Tonight we skyped with Matt, Nathan, Mom, Dad, Megan, Aunt Angel, Uncle Don, and more.  As soon as John saw Nathan on the screen he started pointing at him saying 'brah-bo."  He was so excited to see his brother online!  It really melts a mommy's heart to know that her boys love each other soooo much. Don't worry - he also was excited to see "da," "paw-pa," "me-maw," and "meh-meh" (Megan).

I miss Matt and Nathan immensely - but it makes me miss them even more when I know that John is missing them too.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Way To Go Mom!

Small successes for this week?  Yes!  There have been plenty!  But which ones to choose for this post?!?!

1.  After much chasing of paperwork, calling of people, voicemail left and more - I'm happy to report that John's therapy services through the state have finally resumed!  Geez Louise!  It took a lot of work on my end (although it shouldn't).  So he's had speech therapy this week and next week we start up occupational therapy again.  Still trying to track down his new developmental therapist and waiting to get his behavioral evaluation scheduled once I know who is supposed to be administering it. 

2.  We've been cooking at home a lot recently and planning our meals at the beginning of the week.  It's easier on the pocket book and easier on our waistlines.  This past week we've even tried out some new recipes!  Sweet and sour meatballs with rice was a big hit (John does love his meatballs!) and we cleared a lot of leftovers out of our fridge by planning our meals ahead of time.

3.  *This one is a biggie for me!*  Matt and Nathan left this morning for San Antonio for 4 days.  While the circumstances aren't great (they're attending a funeral), the success here is that I didn't cry when my baby left me this morning.  John's longest trip away from mommy was while I was in the hospital after delivering Nathan for 2 days and he came to visit twice a day.  And this is my first extended time away from Nathan and he won't be stopping by to visit from 4 states away. 
--Equally successful is that my husband managed to wrangle an 8 month old as a lap child on the flight to Texas without his (or anyone else's) eye getting poked out by flailing arms....

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Snowed In Successes

I haven't left the house since we ran to the store for provisions on Monday morning.  We've been snowed in all week.  Besides starting to get a little stir crazy and getting a slight case of cabin fever - I've/We've survived.  That alone ought to count as a success...in fact, let's count that as #1

#2 - John's been fighting a croupy cough and a nasty cold.  Since we can't run around the house or roughhouse in the basement due to extreme coughing spells that ensue, we've been looking for 'sit-still' activities for a 2 year old.  We came up with some good ones!

#3 - Nothing makes a snowy day go by faster than being in the kitchen.  Being snowed in this week I've 'home-made'  broccoli cheddar soup, rice krispie treats, brownies, italian beef, and pizza.  And today I have more in the works....Malt-O-Meal muffins, apple cinnamon oatmeal, and maybe some taco soup.  Maybe I'll get motivated and post some of the recipes here later today...

Bonus #4 - The house continues to get cleaner and cleaner.  This is a feat when you can't leave the house and every toy known to man gets dragged out 5 times a day!  But since we're stuck inside I've been dusting, sweeping, mopping, wiping and purging.  No wonder I'm so tired!

Share your successes over at Faith and Family Live!
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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Snowpocalypse

Today we were pretty much snowed in.  OK - not really snowed in, but iced in.  The short trek to the mailbox was painful as the sleet pelted me.  We're told to expect about 14 inches of snow/ice over the next 24 hours.  Meaning, that the great outdoors will probably not be in our near future.

Of course, we all know that children only get sick when you can't make it to the doctor/pharmacy....so, with that in mind, John woke up with the worse case of croup he's had to date.  By mid-afternoon he had stridor (whistling/wheezing while breathing) so severely that I was sure he was going to pass out for lack of oxygen.  I called the pediatrician's exchange, because their office is closed due to inclement weather.  The on-call physician called me back and confirmed the croup/stridor over the phone resulting in a Rx being called into the only open pharmacy in the area.  Luckily, my parents were willing to brave the icy, snow-packed roads to get John his steroids so that I didn't have to take the boys out in this nasty weather.

What do you do with a toddler who can't run around because he starts coughing, is stuck inside, and you don't want to set him in front of the TV?  You make Valentines Day placemats with tissue paper, stickers, markers and wax paper. 
We're certain Daddy will love them on St. Valentine's Day!
 And when that gets boring?  What next?  Why, Cheerio necklaces, of course!

Hard at work
Little Fingers
Such style!
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As a side note - tomorrow is Groundhog Day.  If it’s cloudy when the groundhog leaves his burrow in the morning, it will leave the burrow, signifying winter will soon end. If it’s sunny, the groundhog will see his shadow and be scared back into his burrow, meaning winter will continue for six more weeks.  Anyone have any insight on what happens if the groundhog can't get out of his burrow due to ice and snow?