Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I was already gone...

I was already gone
Life is a runaway train you can't wait to jump on
-Sugarland, "Already Gone"

This weekend, I attempted - YET AGAIN - to get the clothing problem under control. There was a giant mound of clothes in the hallway which were approximately 1/3 out of season, 1/3 too small for Luke, and 1/3 other assorted mess. There were sippy cup parts in there(?!?). So I sorted. One bin for the attic, one pile to go into Luke's dresser, one bag for Goodwill, one pile for Jay's room. Nothing out of the ordinary - just the constant rotation of children's clothing: out with the too small, in with the too big. Then, I got overly ambitious.

I tried to match socks.

Each of the boys has a sock drawer, and each is nearly overflowing with unmatched socks. I figured we could weed out the infant socks and the stretched out/stained/holes in the bottom ones and suddenly they'd all match up. (When will I learn?!) At the end of the matching party, I was left with nine - NINE - socks that didn't have mates. Who knew we had so many different varieties of socks?! Being sandal season, I was darn confident that no socks were hiding in the depths of the laundry piles, since the small feet in this family haven't seen socks in weeks.

In my new push to live a less clutter-filled existence, I did what any reasonable person would do. Knowing the mates to these 9 lonely stockings weren't in the laundry and weren't in their rooms, I chucked them. (Gasp!) Even the two really nice baby Gap ones, the only ones either kid would keep on their feet as infants. Into the trash. I was pretty proud of myself, and my uncluttering ways.

Fast forward to this evening.

Derek went to the grocery store, while I stayed here to straighten the house and take out the trash. (Take that, traditional gender roles!) I dutifully took out the trash, bidding a fond farewell to unmatched socks and the chaos they brought to my world. Then I went to unpack Luke's daycare bag. Guess what got sent home today?

Yup. Those are the "good" socks that actually stay on baby feet. The ones whose mates are in the trash that I just took out to the street mere moments before. And y'all wonder why I never throw anything away.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

I got my first real six string...

...bought it at the five and dime
played it til my fingers bled
was the summer of '69
-Bryan Adams, Summer of '69

Because this boy and his guitar are hilarious together:

And because you know how I love song lyrics, I've written them out for your viewing pleasure:
I want to
I've got a tomato
while I was painting
but I took it home
I just, I just went home
and I just ate my tomato
but first I took off my shoes and drank my food
and I wanted to play
and then I played
and then I go to bed
(Squeal of little brother - translation "What the hell is all that racket?")

"I drank my food"? Where did that come from?!

And then I give you this little gem, just because his rock star face made me laugh until I nearly peed in my pants. He's trying SO hard to be cool. Seriously, can't you just see this on stage in another 20 years?

What? You don't typically use a wadded up paper towel for a guitar pick?! Awww, c'mon. "Root Root Root for the BlastOff" - can you tell the theme at school this week is outer space? Three year olds are a hoot and a half.

Hope that brought a smile to your day.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Rest your head...

...it's time for bed
-Mark Kozelek, Bedtime Lullaby

(Another lovely song from Yo Gabba Gabba - all you haters need to at least listen!)

Zzzzzz. The sleep study. Zzzzzzzz.

So last week we headed to Duke to see if putting stickers on Luke's head would help the docs determine why he snores like a 50 year old man. Sidenote, by "we headed to Duke" I mean "Luke and Jen headed to Duke." Normally all things hospital default to Dr. Veterinarian. 'Cause, you know, children are just small cows. But since sleep study landed on poor Dr. Vet's birthday, I thought it kindest to let him sleep in his own bed. Plus, I generally excel at getting the Lukester to sleep, and sleep was most definitely our goal here.

Of course, my exceptional getting kid to sleep skills did not extend to getting kid to sleep with pointy objects sticking up his nose...

We arrived at Duke at our assigned appointment time of 8 p.m. clad in our PJ's (yes, both of us) and ready to show 'em what fine sleepers we are. Of course, kid is normally asleep by 7:15, so I was quite certain that he'd conk out en route to Durham. Amazingly, he stayed awake. Guess it's hard to sleep with your window rolled down as your mom whizzes down I-40 at 80 mph. (See, I not only have getting to sleep skills, I have delaying sleep skills!) We wandered around & admired the fish tank until we were summoned upstairs.

I kept thinking this was a familiar place (we haven't spent much time at big Duke since Jay was a newborn). I eventually realized that the sleep study room was right next door to the room where we waited for them to decide that he did indeed need a second overnight stay to check on heart issues. (This was also the site of what I now call the "square boobs incident" ... a story that deserves a blog post all its own. Just a teaser to keep you tuned in.)

So, the tech gets Luke all hooked up to about 6 million wires and he is generally pretty good about it. We try to distract him with a video, but he's not that into it, and the tech isn't really able to get the VCR (no, I didn't misspell DVD) working. She can only make it rewind, though it does show the cartoon characters moving in reverse. Could I make this stuff up?! He's getting cranky, but not putting up much of a fight.

Then, she brings out the nasal cannula. You know, the little clear plastic thing that's in the nose of every television hospital patient? The thing that's supposed to make them look sickly? She was supposed to put one on to measure the carbon dioxide he's breathing out. Well, she might as well have tried to stick a hot poker up his nose. He was not having it and was swinging punches with all his might. So she wisely decided to let him fall asleep and return with hot nasal poker, uh, I mean cannula, when he's zonked out. In the meantime, he twists and turns and thrashes and fights until the 6 million wires are quite literally braided around his leg. But around 9:30, he finally falls asleep.

(Please note that in spite of the mummy wrapping, his hair is still sticking up!)

I began the untangling process and she returned with cannula. She's been watching his brain waves, so she knows he's in REM sleep and should just snooze right on through this little cannula addition. It's just two more pieces of tape and a little plastic tube in your nose, right? Wrong. Let's just say he woke back up and was NOT HAPPY happy about it. So she left me to practice my baby settling skills, and she'd come back when he was really good & asleep. (You see where this is going, right?) Let the tossing and thrashing commence again!

She repeated this little game no less than 4 times, each about an hour apart. Cannula is now hanging across his sleepy little mouth, and he's fighting mad. At 1:30 a.m., she suggested we go home and try again another night. Are you bleepin' kidding? I'm sorry, but we've now been here over 5 hours, and I have absolutely no intention of trying this another night. What in the world makes you think it would be different then?! (I get a little cranky when I'm overtired. Wonder where my kids get it from?) I told her in no uncertain terms that she was going to have to get whatever data she could get from the 6 million things that were currently attached, and she was going to let him sleep the remainder of the night.

For some reason, after my little outburst she felt compelled to show me the computer monitor with his adorable little brain waves. Ummmm, hello? It's approaching 2 a.m. and I'm supposed to be at work in a mere 6.5 hours. How's about we take a nap? But in showing me the monitor, she realized that the cannula's location hanging across his open mouth was enough to pick up the reading she wanted. Well, not exactly what she wanted, but better than nothing. So we managed to tape it there and roll with it. And we did get a good 5 hours in after that.

And now we wait. We won't hear anything for another couple of weeks, and I will bet large sums of money that they will want to take out his tonsils. As long as there's no nasal cannula involved, I'm cool with that.

Hey - my initials are back! Some computer stuff I just don't understand - it was there, then it was a broken image, and now it's back. Spiffy.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Sunny day,sweeping keeping the clouds away...

...on my way to where the air is sweet
can you tell me how to get
how to get to Sesame Street?
-Sesame Street theme

When I was a kid, we didn't watch much TV. We had basic cable with about 12 channels, and we had the big TV (with a very little screen) that actually required you to get up and turn a silver knob to change the channel. But we didn't need 200+ channels - because we got PBS on channel 4, and that had SESAME STREET.

I loved Sesame Street. Still do, in fact. Bert, Ernie, Big Bird, Snuffy, Prairie Dawn, Oscar, Cookie Monster, The Count. I love those old guys. And I'm learning to love the newer characters like Elmo, Zoe, Abby Cadabby, and Rosita. They just don't seem like old friends yet (yes, I realize that Elmo has been around since the mid 80's - he just didn't have the HUGE role that he has now!).

But last weekend, we got the chance to go to Sesame Street - well to the RBC Center turned into Sesame Street. But we didn't just get to go to see the 123 Imagine show. We got the VIP treatment! My brother's super-cool girlfriend, Michelle, got us backstage passes to meet some of the characters. Michelle is a beautiful and talented dancer whose stage presence & dancing prowess are most often seen on another Sesame Street Live tour. She's Zoe on Elmo's Green Thumb! In fact, she's also had the leading role of Elmo, but with her pep and energy, she's a perfect fit for Zoe. And at least as Zoe she gets to wear a tutu when she dances...! She's taking the show to China in another month - how cool is that?

Michelle & Cookie (It's okay Baby Bear - we want you in the picture too!)

For our special meet & greet, we were escorted to a backstage spot where we waited for our furry friends to arrive. We were warned that they were much bigger in real life than they appear on TV. And we were reminded that they would be resting their voices for the big performance. Oh the anticipation!

After a couple of minutes, we saw Ernie headed our way! Let me tell you, dude wasn't kidding when he said they are bigger in real life. They are huge! I was so excited - it seriously felt like we were meeting celebrities I'd admired my whole life. (I am such a dork, I know. Revealing my true inner dorkiness through this blog is one of my great joys - just roll with it.) It really was awesome.
Meeting our muppet friends

The boys, however, were not nearly so excited at that moment. Luke was terrified and screamed the whole time. Odd, since he's not scared of Mr. Wuf or the Chick-Fil-A cow, both of whom have sent Jay right over the edge. Jay was intimidated, but at least didn't cry. He was super excited after the fact and has talked about it (over and over and over again) since, but you sure wouldn't have known he was happy about it at the time. Me - I was pretty much on cloud 9.

After a few photo ops of our whole group, we headed back to our seats for the show. (Sidenote - I really really REALLY wish I'd gotten a picture of just me w/ Bert & Ernie. I love them! Hear that Michelle? Next time. Next time.) We had great seats and a good view of the stage. And we got to ask insider questions like how the dancers see and how they move their mouths. (Oh, c'mon - I can't reveal all my secrets to the world...!)

My favorite scene - Ernie imagining that he's on a ship

Who's more enthralled - me or the kid?

It was such a cute show. Seriously. I mean, I wouldn't go if I didn't have preschoolers (I'm a dork, but I do have my standards), but I'd definitely take them again. The kids were both much more well-behaved than I would have predicted, and we all had a blast. When the show was over and we were trying to drag Jay back up the stairs and out to the car, he said "But I want to have MORE fun!" Damn, he's cute.

Lovin' the small version of Elmo

So, Michelle - can we meet you in China?

Friday, June 3, 2011

Teach your children well...

...their fathers' hell did slowly go by
and feed them on your dreams
-Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, "Teach Your Children"

It's National Doughnut Day - I'm collapsed on the couch in my sugar coma and can't come up with any witty prose. A pic is worth a thousand words anyway.

Train your child in the way he should go
and when he is old he will not turn from it.
-Proverbs 22:6 (NIV)

Sweet thoughts!

She don't wanna be nobody's baby...

...she don't wanna be nobody's prize
-Cravin' Melon, "Nobody's Prize"
(One of my very, very, absolute, favoritest songs. Ever. Takes me back to my freshman year of college... ahhh, memories.)

My very first bloggin' award! Woohoo! Okay, it *was* awarded to me by someone who I know and love, but it's still a prize nonetheless. I'm a proud blogger!

It was awarded to me by the lovely Sush who blogs at First Do No Harm. Between bragging on her adorable grand babes, she's writing about her large family and posting super cool pics pulled from her archives. She's the mom to 5 kids - 4 boys and one girl. (Note to all - I have no plans of continuing to have kids until I have the girl I've dreamed of ... if I have a third boy, we're done!)

So, in the spirit of paying it forward, here are some blogs that I want to recognize by sharing some love:

#1 - Joye @ Signs of Life. A fellow heart mama, I was referred to Joye's blog by a friend of a friend of a mom of a co-worker ... you get the picture. She's one of a handful of people I've met on the interwebs and that connection has morphed into an amazing real-world friendship. You'll love her writing, and you can't help but love her little cutie pie.

#2 - Erica @ Chillin' With Lemonade. What started as a blog about her struggles as a young widow has morphed into a beautiful story about finding real joy after sorrow. She's strong, she's open & honest, and she admits her own vulnerabilities in a way that's really tough to do publicly. Her story makes me happy.

#3 - "Mumma" @ Moms. Plural. Period. One of the most interesting women I know, she calls it like it is without being in-your-face. She's not an every single day blogger, but when she's got something to say, she says in a way that is authentic and real. Plus she uses great expressions like "Italiorican." When she offers to pray for you, she means it!

#4 - Chrissy @ The Hardy Life. We've never met in real life - in fact we've never even spoken. I read a lot of blogs about children with CHD (Congenital Heart Disease), but this one is about her daughter who was born with with CDH (Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia). She's got a miraculous story of a fellow ECMO babe, and she tells it in a beautiful way. Her faith shines through.

Thanks, Sush, for giving me this recognition and giving me the chance to share some excellent writing with my readers. Happy blog hopping!