Monday, June 30, 2008

Gabe and the beach

By far Gabe's favorite thing to do at the beach was just run!

He built up his courage to walk into the little waves with Daddy....

and sometimes they were a little overwhelming.....

.....but mostly he loved them.

He even sat on the boogie board in the shallow water and cruised a little.

Good night-time excuse?

Last night Chad and I were in our room catching up on last week's The Next Food Network Star, when Colin came stumbling in from his bedroom, where he was supposed to be going to sleep.

"I can't go to sleep because I just keep missing Myrtle Beach!"

And why shouldn't he? He had the time of his life. The kid, who a year ago wouldn't let the waves lap at his feet, has turned into a 5 year old boogie-boarding nut. We all had a wonderful time at the beach, but he definitely had the best time.

*Let me just note that Chad was by his side the entire time and we never let him go out too far. But I was so shocked by his sudden onset of bravery. Even when he ate it and went under a couple of times he never got frazzled.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Gone baby gone

We are off to Myrtle Beach this weekend! This is our one last little hurrah for the summer. I have a couple of things to do before we go in an hour and at the top of the list is skimming through last night's episode of So You Think You Can Dance to catch the highlights and see who got kicked off. I went to bed extra early last night because I woke up at 4:30 yesterday morning, so I didn't watch it then, and I really can't last the whole weekend without knowing who got the boot. I can't believe I have not blogged about it yet this season because it is a Major Event in my life each week. So let me just take this opportunity to say:


Not that the other season's haven't rocked too, but I am so glad that it just keeps getting better and better.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Anything that growls

Some of Gabe's latest favorites, watching morning cartoons with him.

Steal my heart

Sabina and the kids came over the other day just to hang out, and Liam bestowed many a baby-licious smile on me and his mother. Quite charming for someone who has known this world for only a month! Can you tell how much he loves his mama?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Here's a question for you.....

Would you ever go to a baseball game dressed like this?! :o)

Take me out to the ball-game!

We went to a Charlotte Knight's game on Friday. They had a deal where you could get a ticket, soda, popcorn, and hot-dog all for $5! It was a beautiful, cool evening and the boys were as cheerful as could be.

Colin got his beloved cotton candy, and Gabe absolutely refused to touch the weird-looking stuff.

The most exciting part of the evening occured while I wasn't there. I knew that Levi was somewhere at the ballpark with his older kids, so I walked around to look for them. While I was gone, a foul ball landed right behind Chad and the kids, and rolled to their feet, where Colin picked it up! His first foul ball! He was SO excited! What a great evening.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Discovery Place

The kids and I got to take another trip (this time by car) to Discovery Place on Friday. The kids had a great time, and were really happy to meet Daddy for lunch. It was a beautiful day in the city.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

With every kick

I woke up this morning with a familiar feeling. I couldn't seem to catch my breath and my legs felt jumpy and achy. I have found that in the last couple of months, whenever I sleep poorly the night before, I feel this way when I wake up. It was a strange connection to make - not enough sleep = not breathing well, so it took me awhile to figure it out. Last night, Gabe woke up crying my name on two different occasions (for no apparent reason) and while he was calmed easily the first time, the second time I gave up and took him into my room. Chad slept soundly through it all and only vaguely remembers Gabe scooting into his back so he could share Daddy's pillow (as instructed to by Mommy, which Chad doesn't remember :o) Of course Gabe fell back asleep more easily than I did, so while he awoke with a smile on his face, I found myself struggling down the stairs (yeah *struggling*, so imagine how much I struggle up them) to fix some bowls of cereal.

If Chad had been in his office, I probably wouldn't have mentioned my weariness at all. He was working from home though, so I felt the need to explain why I was going to lie on the couch and veg out for awhile to catch my breathe. I hate doing that. I am sick of hearing myself talk about pregnancy symptoms, and talking about them yet again made me feel like the old woman in Anne of Avonlea (the movie) who demands the curtains and windows remain tight and gasps with every breath. Just get me a wet washcloth and prop my feet up darling, and I will be fine. Oh, and after you finish running those reports for work, would you mind washing the dishes and cleaning the toy room again?

Yeah, so I try and keep the complaining to a minimum, which is still A LOT. I sure hope that since this is my third time around and it has remained relatively uneventful, I haven't been too whiny or obsessed.

Obsessed is hard not to be when you are 31 weeks pregnant. You are always physically aware of being pregnant, with the kicks in the ribs, and the weird, smelly sweating. If you are like me, you are also constantly making mental notes about what needs to be done before the baby arrives. My lists are full of tasks that I really don't feel like doing but am obsessive about getting done, so I usually sit Chad down and demand that we divide them up, secretly hoping he will take on the majority of them to ease my ever-blooming anxiety. Most of my thoughts during the day are related to getting things done in the next two months, and being prepared for how things are going to change after that big day. Understandable, right?

Also understandable is that my husband's thoughts are not centered on the before and after of the EDD. He hasn't experienced nausea, back pain, shortness of breath, extra trips to the bathroom, and a growing waistline. He has no constant reminders, expect my complaints, which, for the record, he has never shown an impatience with. He will get gooey-eyed over a new baby and bring up his excitement over ours, but for now, his focus is essentially the same - work, spending time with the two boys we already have, and tons of projects around the house. Understandable, right?

I don't think I got that during my first pregnancy. I remember being a little peeved and hurt that he wasn't as obsessed as me. But now I am sick of it all myself.

Not long ago I was reading Anne of Ingleside, and when Anne is expecting Rilla, her seventh child, the author only subtly hints at it. Kinda like - Anne is looking forward to what the summer will bring her and has to take it easy. From what I can gather from the books, women back then were not really expected to do much while they were pregnant. Well, at least middle-class ones who had hired help, which of course, is exactly what I would have been, right? I picture me as Anne, Chad as Gilbert, and a jolly hired woman who does all the difficult cooking and worships the ground I walk on, so I can be left to mothering my children and flowers.

I am sure that most women today do not want to be put on a shelf while they are pregnant. Maybe they would go crazy if their responsibilities were taken away from them. On mornings like today though, it is my dream. Just an outright acknowledgement by all involved that I feel like crap on many a day - no one expecting anything out of me expect hand-sewing some rompers and knitting some booties. Chad wouldn't have to hear my complaining because I would never feel the need to explain myself, and I wouldn't have to feel guilty anymore about basing my menus on what is easiest instead of what is most nutritious. Wouldn't it be a lot simpler if I were really Anne?

Monday, June 16, 2008

Karma bites me in the bud

I guess I should know better. My parents taught me not to brag.
I took a stroll out to my corner flower garden yesterday afternoon and found a heartbreaking sight -
Japanese beetles decimating my zebra mallow and my knock-out-rose bush.
The damage was severe by the time I found them, and I have spent the last two days researching them and plucking these evil beasts off and drowning them in soapy water. I have heard an old-timers way of getting rid of them is to blend some of the dead ones up and spray the "juice" on your plants. I am very tempted to try it.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father's Day

We tend to turn holidays into weekend affairs, so Father's Day started yesterday when we presented Chad with his gift - Mario Kart - which he had actually emailed me a link to buy a few weeks ago, so you can imagine how surprised he was. He was surprised though later when I gave him three mores wheels for it.

They took a break from the Wii playing to go to Dunkin' Donuts and then to see Kung Fu Panda. I protested that Chad should do something for himself but he said that he wanted to just hang out with his boys for Father's Day. What a sweetie.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Congratulations Stephanie

The first female winner of Top Chef. Calm, cool, collected, and nice to everyone - everything that a certain other female finalist was not. You proved that you don't have to cocky and defensive to be confident and strong. I was rooting for you from the beginning!!

Can I brag a little?

Here is my first vegetable garden! I am so happy with the way it is going. I have summer squash, zucchini, "Lemon Boy" tomatoes, grape tomatoes, "Better Boy" tomatoes, "Big Boy" tomatoes, mini sweet orange bell peppers, red bell peppers, cilantro, basil, and some pea plants that I planted way too late that are NOT doing well, so I don't really count them.

Okay, I haven't actually gotten any vegetables yet, but it's only a matter of time (I hope! Cross your fingers for me!)

And just in case I hear any comments about green thumbs and black thumbs, it all comes down to hard work people!

More seriously, this garden, along with my flower garden, which is still looking rather pathetic, have really kept me going this pregnancy. Since I care about it so much and enjoy it like I do, it gets me moving in the mornings. I have spent the last two mornings out there for 3 hours at a time. I hit up a plant sale a few weeks ago and received about 30 flower plants in the mail two days ago that I wanted to get in the ground as soon as possible, plus I had a ton of weeding to do. Not many things motivate me like gardening does and hopefully I will be enjoying the fruits of my labor in more ways than one in August.

*Oh, and in case any of you are wondering how I manage to garden for three hours at a time when I have two boys to take care of, I pretty much let them watch as much TV as they want on those days. C'mon, I am bragging about being a good gardener, not a good mother :o)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Are you flirting with me?

Gabe learned how to raise his eyebrows, and now every once in awhile he will call my name, let out a huge grin and do his new trick. He knows it cracks me up. Please ignore the messiness.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Music by the Pond

Our community is having concerts by our pond every Friday in June. Performing last night was a band from Hawaii, The Tsunami Wave Riders, so Colin and I checked out a book about Hawaii and have been reading this week. Then also made a dessert with pineapple in it for after the concert - dump cake, a very easy and yummy dessert (but make sure you eat it with ice cream on top for the full effect). Even though it was a very warm evening, it was a lot of fun, and I think if I promise Chad that I will bring sodas, we will go again next week.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Baby Name Genie

I saw something about this website today, so I went to it. It comes up with a name for your baby, and I typed in our last name to see what it would suggest.....and it was LEVI Coleman! In case some of you don't know, my brother's name is Levi and I LOVE his name. Pretty funny.

Lazy Summer Days

Cooking is the one household chore that I really don't mind. I pride myself on making a weekly menu, shopping accordingly, and usually having dinner on the table within a half hour of Chad getting home. However......lately I just don't feel like cooking! I think it is the heat and my laziness combined, but nothing ever sounds appealing for dinner - at least not appealing enough to put forth the effort to cook it. So who has some really really really easy recipes (or even yummy frozen meals they have found) they would like to share with me? Ones that you want to make and eat on a hot (99 degrees!) summer day. At least slightly nutritious would be ideal. Anyone?

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Invasive Procedures

I have found out what process combines everything that makes me uncomfortable. Applying for life insurance. In general I don't like talking to people that I don't know well (yes, I am an anti-social snob), and when I have to answer very personal questions asked by these people, I get snappy, curt and just forgetful. I always think that these people who are just doing their jobs are judging me.
WHAT?! This woman can't remember the name of the doctor she saw once for strep throat last September? And she doesn't have the address of the clinic memorized? Well then, I can't see her lasting past the age of 29. Definitely not insurable, and on top of that, highly irresponsible.

She can't get enough pee in a cup for our tests even though she is hugely pregnant and we TOLD her to drink lots of water? Definitely a sign of chronic dehydration! Doesn't she care about her unborn child's life?

Seriously though, it was a yucky morning for me, and while Mr. Cool-With-Anyone-Chad didn't seem bothered one bit by having a stranger in our home taking our blood and urine and weighing us, I was ready to barf by the time she left. Wait, that was just because I drank at least 8 cups of water while she was here , to try and eek out enough liquid gold to satisfy her, and all that water was sloshing around in a completely empty stomach because we hadn't been allowed to eat since breakfast. Nausea City.

Here are some more highlights:
"Have you gained 10 lbs in the last year?" (Ugh, didn't we already discuss the whole knocked-up thing? I wish it was ONLY ten lbs)

"Have you been hospitalized in the last 5 years?" (That little guy flicking my license at me is 5 and the one coming down the stairs with a bat in his hands is 2.)

Saying the wrong name for my doctor, even though I saw her less than two weeks ago, forcing the lady to sigh and break-out the white-out to correct my mistake.

Admitting that I don't have a primary care physician (seriously though, when you have been pregnant three times in 5 1/2 years, isn't that enough doctor-visiting?)

Yeah, so I know I am a little hypersensitive about this kind of junk, and I know that probably says something about me, but I'm not going to sweat it too much. We all deserve to have some weird insecurities, right?
Oh, and by the way, I had to use the restroom 5 times in the hour after she left. Just thought you would like to know.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The (almost) perfect date

Colin finished his 50th reading lesson a couple of weeks ago, so yesterday evening was designated as the big date day. Colin was excited about going to Zuma with me, and was consequently in a wonderful mood all day. I don't know how many times he came up to me throughout the day and gave me a big hug and said "I love you Mom!" Finally Chad came home from work, we ate dinner, and it was time to go!

Colin continued his sweetness by presenting me with a flower as we were walking to the car.

First we played miniature golf and Colin knew that my back has been having problems so picked up my ball for me after every hole. He was such a gentleman. The sun was in his eyes in that picture - I swear he did it with a smile on his face each time.

Like most sports, Colin takes his mini golf very seriously. The smile cracked in the second picture is after he hit an incredible hole-in-one! This is where the "almost perfect" date part comes in. The one fault he had as a date was that he liked to brag about his awesome golf skills, comparing them to mine, which are definitely below his.

After the golf, Colin again showed his incredible coordination on the kiddie go-carts. He had that intense look of concentration on the whole time, and never once even bumped the side. I got a real kick out of watching him.

In typical Zuma fashion, the train wasn't working at first and while the guy went to try and get it started, Colin used the time to joke around with me. I like these pictures because I can rarely catch a true Colin smile these days.

He capped off the fun with a ride on the airplanes, and then it was off to.....


Where Colin commented that we could share a banana split, because it's a banana SPLIT!

It was a wonderful evening and it was so good to spend some time alone with my sweet boy. Sometimes I keep so caught up in the day to day discipline and worry over whether my kids are behaving or not that I forget what great kids they really are. As I walked along holding Colin's hand last night, I got to remember how incredible and fun and adorable he is.

On the way home I was warning him that bed-time was coming and he told me, "But Mom, my whole body is with wide awake! My whole body is having a party!"