Saturday, August 30, 2008
So far - they were right!
I think that we call them the "Terrible Twos" because if we said "Terrible Threes" we'd loose all hope when they acted up at two - if we knew we might be faced with this for even longer.
So wish us luck - we need it.
(When I took these pictures Gabe shrieked, "Why are you taking my picture - I hate it!" I told him it was so I could show his kids someday that their dad threw lots of fits. He didn't think that was a good idea.)
Hunter has been enjoying pushing things around so he can cruise around the house. He has 2 different push toys - but they go too fast unless Gabe is on them. He's found that he likes to push around chairs and stools in the kitchen, laundry baskets and diaper boxes (the same boxes we used to put him in to help him sit up - these things are multi-taskers!) I just wish he could learn to walk....I have a feeling he'll learn while we're on our vacation and Cory's parents will get to see his first steps. That would be great for them...but I think I'll cry if I miss it!
His other favorite thing to mess with this week is the vents - you know like heating/cooling vents? He takes them out and messes with them, tries to grab things that have fallen into the vents (you know - like nasty stuff, hair, dead bugs?) It's making me crazy. I'm ready to duck-tape them to the floor. Every room he's been in have the vents taken off and stashed around the room (by him). I can't just take them off - that's not safe - but I do not know what to do with them. Any suggestions?
The template: Sya's freebie #5 (you can download it here: http://www.4shared.com/file/60134491/35c796d3/sbp_tempfree005.html)
Kit: Joy Mini Kit made by Dúnia (it was a freebie: http://oyurieagalera.blogspot.com/)
As with the preschool experience he did much better once I left. I had planned on staying for the first class to see how it went - but after about 5 minutes Gabe wouldn't leave my side. I told him I'd run home and be back when class was over and he had a great time as soon as I left. The 2nd week I asked if he wanted me to stay or go home and he didn't even hesitate for a second that he wanted me to just drop him off.
After a day of playing hard at gymnastics Gabe is exhausted and sleeps great at night. Hope he keeps having fun with it.
When we were leaving the house for preschool he said, "Mom - don't forget your camera!" So I grabbed it, but when I tried to get him to pose with his teacher for a picture, or outside of the school - he would NOT do it. I was lucky for the few snapshots that I got. I told him he could get out of it this week - but on the first official day of class - I was totally going to take his picture. We'll see how that goes.
I'm excited for Gabe to get to go to preschool. Since he's only 3 I'm not doing it as much for the academic aspect as I am for the social experience. He will enjoy learning with other kids and playing with other kids I think. I got a call today from his preschool teacher to tell me that she had decided to have his class go for 2 hours rather than the hour and 1/2 that was originally planned. I'm excited about that - I think 2 hours will be better.
And on the subject of academics and learning - I am THRILLED to announce that Gabe is really catching on to his colors. He has known a lot of his colors since he was like 19 months old - he caught right on to pink, orange, purple, brown - but he was having a VERY hard time with the more basic colors - red, yellow, blue, and sometimes green. I was getting worried about him being color blind, I'd even talked to his pediatrician about it. But this week something clicked and he gets it! Now he's still not PERFECT with it - but he's got it about 98% of the time. In fact, last night he was even telling me that yellow and blue made green, and that red and yellow made orange. So not only does he 'get' the colors - but he's figured out how primary colors work. Smart cookie!
One afternoon this week we had a "read-a-thon". We'd just gotten our new library books for the week, and Hunter was down for his nap. Gabe and I snuggled up on my bed and we read a BUNCH. In fact, we read for over 2 hours! He wasn't even sick of it - I'm the one who said we needed to stop so I could make dinner. I love that he enjoys books and reading.
He's also been starting to recognize letters too. It's hilarious because several times a day he says, "Mom - how do you spell _____?" I'll go through the letters with him, talk about the sounds of the letter, and he's catching on.
I love seeing their little minds working and churning - so fun!
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Lately it seems that we've had all kinds of computer issues. Recently I thought I had lost everything on my main computer due to a faulty power-supply. Luckily it was just that - the power supply - and was easily fixed. But it was a scary couple of days before we knew why our computer was dead as a door-nail (happened over a holiday).
Then recently I've been dealing with Cory using my laptop (ok - it used to be his - but I did inherit it and I've become quite fond of it!) for work and I feel like my right arm has been cut off. Now I have to drop EVERYTHING to have computer time - because I have to go hide away in my office. And now, I love a few minutes of quiet in my nice cool office - my kids have been known to destroy my house in my small moments of escape. It's been much easier when I've had the laptop on my kitchen desk to work on in the middle of the craziness we call life.
And the couple of days I have had my computer - our internet has been all wonky and hasn't worked. I think we have it worked out though - so hopefully things are back and I can post a few new things on our blog in a bit.
Some things I need to catch up on:
- Gabe's first day of preschool (well - the open house at least)
- Gabe's first day of gymnastics/tumbling
- Gabe funnies (include gum, handy helpers, slobber, reading)
- Hunter's latest antics
- fun pictures from the park with Noah
- trampoline pictures
So today I jumped on the scale and I has lost 2 lbs for this week. YAY! This puts me at having lost 9 lbs. since I started, which was just about a month ago (July 23rd to be exact). I'm hoping for at least a 1 lb loss this coming week - so I can have lost 10 lbs before our Hawaii trip....we'll see - I'm working at it.
As for tips for this week - aside from living a crazy/hectic/insane schedule - I don't have many tips.....
First off - if you are in a hurry - plan ahead. Plan to have foods on hand that are quick and easy, and will fit into your hectic schedule. For instance - I knew that Cory would rarely be around this past month, and things would be nuts with the boys and I - so I have had a lot of frozen meals on hand. I have also figured out what fast foods I could have within my points values, and planned for points I'd need to eat out. I have also worked at having fruit and veggies, and my favorite - beef jerky - available that I can snack on in a bind.
A few of my fast food fixes are:
- McDonald's fruit and yogurt parfaits - 3 points
- McDonald's grilled chicken wrap - 6 points
- Wendy's grilled chicken sandwich - 7 points
- Wendy's *new* grilled chicken go wrap - 6 points
- Wendy's Ceasar side salad - (without croutons, but with dressing) - 4 points
- Carl's Jr. Charbroiled BBQ chicken sandwich - 7 points
ONLY WEIGH YOURSELF ONCE A WEEK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
When I did Weight Watchers after I had Gabe the weight didn't come off completely naturally - but it did go better than it has this go-around. I know that my body is different, I'm older, I haven't been attending meetings - but tried to do it mostly online, and I haven't been as good about sticking with - but the #1 reason I don't think that I've done as well with it is that I purchased a dang scale, and I tend to weigh myself every single morning. This is bad! So if you're trying to loose weight - put your darn scale away (I am thinking of actually getting rid of mine all together!) and only weigh in once a week. This is why going to something like a Weight Watcher's meeting works well - because you aren't checking on your weight all the time and you have a set day and time that you're weighing in. Also - I recommend weighing in at the same time, wearing the same clothes, and always go to the bathroom first ;).
Our weights go up and down all the time. Water weight, hormone weight adjustments, maybe you weigh with different clothes on, different times of the day - all these things can make such a big difference. Also, a lot of times we'll have a bad eating day, get on the scale the next day and not have it show up - we might not have gained anything - so we think, "Wow - I just ate 3 hamburgers and 4 chocolate shakes and didn't even gain any weight. I guess that means that I can eat like a cow again today and it won't affect me." Well, that thinking might have been completely incorrect - because the # on the scale might not have changed immediately, but will catch up after a few days. One thing I have learned for sure - it always catches up, always.
So this week my goal is to put the darn scale away, and not weigh myself until we leave for our trip next week. Wish me luck!
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
YAY! I did my weigh-in this morning (at home, as I'm still just doing WW online, and not at meetings....) and I'm down 2.8 this week! Yahoo!!! Feeling good about it too because it is plain and simply because I stayed on the program really well this week. Once again - it works when you do it the right way.
So here's hoping to another successful week like this one. If any of you have great lower calorie/fat, protein rich forms of food that you enjoy - please post them - I'd love more ideas!
Friday, August 15, 2008
As you may know - the Olympic committee is always looking for new and inovative events to add to the Olympic line up. This year they have found a PERFECT event, and have even managed to award our family with the first ever gold medal - in OLYMPIC MESSY EATING!
Hunter is now considered an icon, a legend, a history maker as the first ever to win an Olympic medal under the age of 2! He has mastered the art of making dinner into a disaster. These pictures only give you a part of his performance - there can often be food on the floor, always under his little bottom, his legs, and my favorite - inside of his ears....Oh - and lately most performances end with the obligatory soak in the tub - because nothing else is getting the chocolate cup-cake out of his little crevices.
Hunter's older brother has been trying to lead the way - but we have to face it - Hunter is just better at this sport. It's ok Gabe - not all of us can be as talented as Hunter. (And you're definetly talented in other ways!)
Although he may be a little young to provide his fans with autographs, he would oblige by smearing some of his bbq pork sandwich onto the front of your shirt or face.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
I wish I had a great recipe to share - but instead I'm going to share a couple of my food ideas that are quick and easy.
Schwan's Herb Garlic Potato & Vegetable Blend - I LOVE these veggies! They have a great taste, don't have the texture of yucky frozen veggies (I generally don't love frozen veggies), and quick. I put them in a skillet with some olive oil and they take about 7 minutes to cook up (from frozen). I have several bags of these in my freezer for those days when I really need to get to the grocery store for fresh fruits/veggies - but just don't want to. They are 1 pt for 1 cup.
Smart Ones or Lean Cuisine frozen meals - I have a stock of these in my freezer when I am just not in the mood to cook, or when the family is eating something I probably shouldn't eat. I also have them for lunch a couple times a week. I watch for the sales and stock up then.
Schwan's Light Chicken Marco Polo - This is only 3 points and has high protein and it TASTY! Add a salad and some fruit - yummo! (I can't find a picture of these online...which makes me worry that they won't be carrying them anymore - yikes!)
Ok - so there you have it. I like pre-made foods - they make life easier. Sure - fresh stuff is great - but sometimes it just works out to have stuff on-hand in the freezer.
These pictures were from bath-time tonight. They were quite the little cheesie guys! I have some other cheesy ones - but they need to have some "modesty" edits - so I'll have to Photo-shop them and add them later.
- The other night we had some frozen chicken florentine for dinner. Gabe took a smell of it and said, "Uh Mom - this smells like Grandpa." Cory and I looked confused and said, "Which Grandpa honey?" He thought about it for a minute and said, "Not Grandpa Kim....and not Papa Rhien....It just smells like a grandpa!" (And honestly - I don't know if it was a 'grandpa' smell - but it didn't smell good - and didn't taste great either!)
- We were driving into town on Saturday and Gabe yells from the backseat "Mom - there's an ELEPHANT!" I laughed and said, "Gabe - I don't think so....." He said, "No Mom - there's an elephant in the cloud up there!" He points to a big puffy cloud that looked exactly like an elephant. Ha! We ended up playing the cloud shape game for a long time after that - I loved it! (I loved that he came up with it all by himself too - we'd never played it before).
- I did something for Gabe - can't remember what it was - but it was something very small, but he responded by saying, "Thank you my cute girl." (Don't let him know - I'd probably do just about anything he wanted if he said that every time. Especially if he said, "Thank you my cute and skinny girl"!)
- We were watching an ad for the Olympics - for diving. Gabe yelled, "Mom - those divers are just like you! They dive off the diving board just like you do." HA-HA! (I took him swimming at the beginning of the summer and he insisted that I jump off the diving board....and JUMP I did - there was no graceful diving....)
- Lastly - today I asked him how much he loved me (see a couple of posts back). I was curious if he'd give me a number again. He didn't even hesitate and said, "Ninety Eight!" So it looks like at the rate we're going that it's all looking up!
- Hunter has started trying to do sign-language. He signs the sign for milk and more (and kind of gets them mixed up a bit).
- Hunter LOVES his daddy and brother. He says "addy" and "ga" to call for them. If Cory comes home and then leaves the room Hunter gets so upset and speed crawls to the door to catch up with him. Today Gabe had a friend over and wasn't playing with Hunter - poor Hunter felt so left out.
- Hunter loves music and loves to dance. If I start singing a silly song he inevitably starts dancing around. And he's also great at dancing on command. I just say, "Dance Hunter" and he starts swaying around (with our without tunes!)
- Hunter has been saying hi and bye quite a bit. He waves to other people, says hi when I got get him in the morning, and waves when people talk to him. His version of hi sounds like "I!"
- We were finishing up with the boy's well visits at the doctor. The doctor was getting ready to leave the room and Hunter waved at him and said clear as day, "Bye!"
- It was bedtime and Hunter wanted Cory to hold him. He leaned out for Cory to take him and then put his head on Cory's shoulder and gave him the sweetest hug. He proceeded to do it several more times - melted my heart. Over the last couple days I'll say, "Hunter - give me loves" and he'll do it again. LOVE it!
Monday, August 11, 2008
- I've been thinking about perspective lately. Isn't it interesting how perspective changes EVERYTHING? The other night we were having dinner at a Japanese Hibachi style restaurant. There was another couple at the table visiting the states from England. They said, "Now this is a pretty big city - isn't it?" We looked at each other and kind of laughed and said, "Well, no - not really...." The woman said, "Well, the village in England that we're from only has about 40 houses..." So yea - I guess where we live is a THRIVING metropolis! It made me think about how we all have different perspectives in life - I hope I can remember that - because since we are all coming from different directions, we all have different experiences. Sometimes it's good to realize that we're not all the same, and everyone doesn't think exactly like I do (thank goodness!)
- Saturday night Cory and I went on a date. It was a special date because we came home from our movie (which - by the way - don't bother to go see the new Mummy movie....dumb!) our baby sitter had BOTH boys asleep - and they stayed that way!!!! Now this probably doesn't sound like that big of a deal - but most of the time we plan our dates to be either after the boys go to sleep - and we go to a late movie - or we'll just tell the babysitter to keep them up. It can be such a pain to get them to bed at night with all of their 'routines'. But on Saturday we told her what to do - and it worked! Both boys went down, didn't get up at all and were snoring soundly when we got home. YAY! Cory paid her extra and we felt like we'd entered a new babysitting era. Now a night out can really feel like a night out, when we don't have to come home and do "mom and dad" stuff when we get home.
- It's funny how as we get older we start to like things that we thought we didn't like as we were growing up. For instance - I just recently realized that I really like: bleu cheese, feta cheese, sushi (YUM! I havent' tried a lot, but the things I have tried I really enjoyed. And I'm excited to try some more soon.) and weeding my yard. The most surprising is - weeding my yard! I've mentioned that before Cory and I were married that I told him, "I don't iron, and I don't pull weeds. If you still want to marry me - that's great - but those 2 things are NOT changing." Well - it has worked out pretty good for the most part. But this summer I have found that I actually *GASP* enjoy pulling weeds! There is something very satisfying about looking out at my (almost) weed-free yard and know that I did that. When I need to do a chore that makes me feel accomplished I go out and pull some weeds. I have fun with it now...and my mother-in-law was right, "If you just weed 10 minutes a day - you can stay on top of things and it doesn't seem like too much." (It takes me maybe 20 minutes a week!) Next summer I fully intend on planting flowers, and possibly even a very small garden. I'm going to start small, but I do think there's something to this gardening gig.
- Why is it when we have a great night with Hunter sleeping (from 9 pm-8:00 am!) I wake up in the middle of the night with a splitting headache? Then shortly after - Gabe wakes up and insists on getting in bed with us. So on a night when I should have been getting a great night sleep I ended up awake at 4:00 am and not falling asleep until my pain reliever kicks in - just 15 minutes before my alarm was supposed to go off. (Which - by-the-way - meant I turned off my alarm and slept an extra 2 hours. Oops...)
- I really have a hard time communicating myself sometimes - and this results in me saying something the way that it makes sense to me - but having it come across wrong and offending someone else. Does this happen to anyone else? I hate it! I don't like offending people, and I can tell you that as a general rule of thumb - if you read something on my blog that offends you - it wasn't meant that way, and you're reading into it the wrong way. Generally if I'm mad at someone, or want to say something in a hurtful way - I won't say anything at all. I'll hold it inside and let it bug me - but I won't say anything to anyone else - especially the person I'm mad at. So if you've been hurt or offended by something I've implied, or said on my blog - know I didn't mean to hurt your feelings, and I'm sorry that you took it that way.
- In relation to the last thought - Cory gets mad because he says that this world of blogs, text messaging, and email that we all misunderstand way too much. He says that we all read too much into things, get too worked up, and use blogs/text/email as our only way of communicating - which opens way too many windows and opportunities for accidentally offending people. Know what....he's right.....
- Last week I had a special friend say that they were worried about me for various reasons - one of which was the fact that it didn't appear that I was finding joy in motherhood. True, there are days when I just feel burnt out and frazzled. I haven't handled Hunter's teething, or Gabe's potty training with much style or grace...But when she said this it really made me think. How often do I stop and enjoy the moments with my children? It's been more obvious to me this last week as my babies have celebrated their birthdays that time is ZOOMING by. I'm going to blink my eyes and suddenly my kids aren't going to be little, sure - that means they will (hopefully) be potty trained, more independent, and not *need* me as much - but on the flip side - they won't be little anymore. So I made a little commitment to myself that I would work on finding joy in my family and being a mother more. Since I have been more conscious of that it seems that I've relaxed a little bit and I have had some truly joyous moments. I've tried to take more time out to read stories, play silly games, blow bubbles, trips to the park, a break to play with bubble wrap (or "giant bubble fire-works" as Gabe calls it) or snuggle with the boys. I've tried to find those moments when we could really be making cherished memories. Now, I have a long way to go - but I'm working on it and it really is making me smile.
- In sacrament meeting yesterday there was a talk about being kind. Actually - the whole meeting was on being kind. One of the speakers said, "Nothing exposes our true self more than how we treat each other in our homes." YIKES! I guess I knew that concept, but hearing it at church yesterday made me stop and think. The world gets a pretty good view of me most of the time. I try to be dressed nicely (although a lot of times it's a stretch just to be dressed cleanly...), speak kindly in public, smile. I generally don't yell in public, or get super frustrated. For the most part I *think* I appear pulled together and on top of my game. However- at home.....ha! It's too easy for me to snap at my kids, be irritated with my husband, take my bad mood out on others, etc. This week I'm also going to work on treating my family in the way that I treat others. They are the very most important part of my life, and I need to work extra hard at treating them lovingly. It's sad that so often they get what's leftover at the end of the day, and many days....that's not much. So join with me this week to help give our families our very best. After all - they are what is important, and hopefully the people who will be with us forever.
- I am starting to feel a part of the Primary now. I do miss our Young Women and the connection that I have had with them - but I'm starting to feel a connection with my Primary class and I love it! We have a large class, and it can be exhausting - but this last week I just loved hearing the kids answer the questions (even with some of their off-the-wall answers), I loved watching some new boys in our class feel like a part of things, and I enjoyed feeling like maybe they listen to at least a part of what we are trying to teach them. Six and seven year olds are pretty fun.
- Also in church one of the hymns we sang was, "Our Savior's Love". What a beautiful hymn - and a great reminder that our Savior loves us unconditionally, and can literally be the sun that shines down and "breaks through clouds of strife". I have felt that love, and it is such a blessing in my life.
Mom: "Gabe - do you know how much I love you? To the moon and back! How much do you love me?"
(Edited to add: Tuesday morning I asked the same question again. "How much do you love me?"
Mom: "So does that mean 7 or 8? Or maybe 78?"
Gabe: "78 mom. Definetly 78.") - WHEW!
Friday, August 08, 2008
This breath-taking view is what we saw from our front door this evening. The sky looked like it was on fire. It gave me chills!
Another thing giving me chills is watching the OLYMPICS opening ceremonies. Wow! I haven't gotten to see all of it, as we were eating dinner and getting the boys ready for bed - but the parts I've caught were also breath-taking. I'm not a huge sports fan - but as many others, I think that the Olympics just bring us together to watch the spirit of the games. I love hearing the stories of the athletes, the hope and hard work - they are inspiring. Just hearing some of the stories gives me goose-bumps.
So I hope you are all enjoying the games, and breath-taking sunsets!
Thursday, August 07, 2008
So today was Gabe's official birthday even though we had the party on Monday. I've learned for the future that I'm not going to celebrate both of their birthdays on the right day AND do a party together...it's just been too much. In the future either we'll celebrate their individual birthdays ON their actual birth-day, or we'll have a party together and call it good. Doing all of it has been too much celebrating :)
For Gabe's birthday he got an awesome Jeep Powerwheels. Now Cory has wanted to buy Gabe one of these type of toys since he was born. I kept telling him that since it was a huge present that it needed to be for a huge occasion, or that he needed to EARN it. So when we were trying to decide when we could justify buying it we decided to use it as our BIG potty training incentive. I was getting a bit nervous that it wouldn't coincide with his birthday (I wanted to kill 2 birds with one stone) - but we were lucky. He was OFFICIALLY potty trained about a week before the big day. We haven't had any accidents in over 2 weeks. Cool huh? It's awesome - and even has a real FM radio that plays real radio - it's cool!
Another one of his fun presents was a Geotrax airport. It's so awesome! If you're familiar with Geotrax this is a new set that has an airplane that can fly on this cool track. It even flies upside down! We had a lot of fun playing with it - Hunter even joined in!
Gabe also enjoyed his new Lightening McQueen remote control car. He's having a hard time learning to steer - but he's working on it. He also struggled driving the jeep a bit - but hopefully practice will help with that as well.
This afternoon I told him he could open one of his presents before we headed out for our "birthday date" (we went to see Wall-e together). I pulled out a present that was some new pajamas and a couple of shirts for pre-school in the fall. He opened them and said, "No Mom - I wanted one of the REAL presents." Gee - thanks kid :)
So we're not only celebrating that Gabe's turning 3, but that he's growing up, and doing it awesome-ly! Love you big guy. You are my sweet kiddo, my handful, my strong-willed child, an amazing joy, a miracle, an someone who makes me happy, very, very happy.