Monday, December 29, 2008

This will probably be a long one, so I'll apologize now.

But last night, we went to my in-laws' for lunch/dinner. I say "lunch-slash-dinner," because it was at four. So either it was a late lunch, or a Seinfeld's early-bird dinner. Either way, it was delicious.

My father-in-law made his barbecued pork ribs, which he knows is a sure-fire way to get me to his house to eat, pronto. Not to be outdone, my mother-in-law made her unbelievable mashed potatoes (she has a gift), pasta salad (oh, heavenly days! pasta salad!) and THREE CHEESE! biscuits. THREE CHEESES, I'M SAYING! It was a feast.

I stuffed myself silly.

Humiliated myself, really. But only because I set a personal record. I only ate one (ONE!) rib. But these were MAMMOTH ribs. Think the rack of ribs the waitress puts on Fred Flintstone's car just before it tips over. No joke, this thing was eight to ten inches long, and a good three to four inches thick. I don't know where FIL finds them. But I love him for them! Oh Lord, I gotta get on with this story, because even now I can taste them.

So I was watching the platter of ribs fairly closely. See, we always take the leftovers home with us. My in-laws just don't eat leftovers, and I LOVE ME SOME RIBS, so that's just the way things work out there. And even though the two eatenist men alive happened to also be there (truth be told, I wasn't expecting there to be any leftovers) the platter was half-full once everyone rolled themselves away from the table. Luck was smiling on me, my friends. Yes, she was.

The evening wore on, and I found it within myself to help my MIL out by eating the rest of my sister-in-law's Christmas cookies (dear God, Kelsey, next time give us all BIG BUCKETS of cookies! I ate all of ours on Christmas Eve; even stole one off Santa's plate. I figure by the time he got to us, he wasn't really tasting them anymore, anyway.). We realized it was getting late, and we had to go to the grocery store before heading home, so we quickly loaded everyone up and said our goodbyes.

As I was putting the groceries away a few hours later, I realized I had made a grave error: I FORGOT TO BRING HOME THE LEFTOVERS!!!

Hubs and I got the kids bathed, brushed and in bed, and then it was my turn. I filled the tub with sweet-smelling bubbles and steamy hot water, and sank in with a good book.

After I read the same paragraph four times, without knowing what I read, it hit me: I MUST HAVE MORE RIBS!!! AND PASTA SALAD!!! THE BABY NEEDS RIBS AND PASTA SALAD!!! THE BABY, PEOPLE!!! And, if it's not too much to ask, A FEW MORE THREE CHEESE BISCUITS!

Hubs was working on an online test, so I didn't bother him about it. Once I got out and dried off, and he had finished his test, I asked him:

"How much do you love me?"

He smirks, but says, "Very much. Why?" (He knows me.)

"Because I forgot to bring home the ribs and some pasta salad from your parents' house and now I'm craving it really bad and it's all I can think about and if you really, truly love me, you'll drive out there and get some for your pregnant wife to satisfy her cravings that are only coming as a result of carrying your third-born child."

He drags his hand down his face, looks at the clock, and says, with that snotty smirk still in place, "It's 11:30. They're old. (I PROMISE I'M NOT MAKING THIS UP! HE SAID IT!) They're asleep. I can't drive out there and wake up old people. I would do it for you, but I just can't do that to old people."

So. There you have it.

He doesn't love me anymore.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all of you!

Here's the Christmas card that Myra of Moon & Back Studios made for us:

I think she did an AWESOME job!!! Obviously, I put "Hubs" over his real name, so that's slightly different!
I didn't place my order until December 16, so she got them done and shipped super-fast. We got these in the mail on Tuesday at noon. I got them addressed, sealed and stamped, and back at the post office by 2:30!!!
We've been trying to clean up the carnage from the gift-fest in the living room... and watching the kids play with all their new stuff. It was a lot of fun. Now the turkey's in the oven, and torturing me with its garlic-buttery smell!
I hope you all enjoy the day with your families and friends.
I didn't sleep well last night. I woke up a lot. Each time I did, I was impressed with the magnitude of today. I just kept thanking God for the gift of His Son so many years ago.
I'm so thankful that Mary was open to sacrifice. She was about 14 years old when the Angel of the Lord appeared to her. She could have said no. But she didn't. She was obedient, and knew there was a bigger picture than inconveniencing her for a time. Joseph could have divorced her when he found out she was pregnant. But he didn't. He also was obedient to the Lord's calling. I don't know if I would have said yes. But I'm thankful they did.
Let's all remember to take some time to think about what today is really all about.
Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Critter Conga by Parents

I have another awesome product to tell you about today. This one is probably my favorite so far.
It's the Critter Conga by Parents.The Critter Conga is a colorful safari-themed percussion set. It features ten different instruments, designed to look like different animals and spark a child's imagination.
There is an antelope slide whistle, giraffe maracas, a crocodile clacker, a monkey rain stick, an elephant whistle, a toucan water whistle, snake drumsticks, and a few other cool instruments. Then there is the Leopard Conga Drum, which holds all of the pieces inside... LOVING that! The lid lifts off and is a really festive-sounding tambourine.
I had the open box on my bed, and Cullen climbed up, looked inside, and immediately started saying, "Open! Open! Open? OPEN!" So I did, and he was off! He loves this set!

He especially loved shaking the maracas and beating the snake drumsticks against the tambourine lid.

Parents will love that all the pieces store neatly (and easily!) inside the large leopard drum. And that it's not one of those hideously annoying toys you'll want to hide the second your kid puts it down! It's really fun to play with (even for adults!) and pleasant to hear.

Either that, or my boy is just exceptionally gifted with plastic instruments.

Parents' philosophy is, "When the toy does less, the child does more." This toy set lives up to that philosophy. The child can make music, play with the animals, learn their names and distinguising characteristics (I was so proud when Cullen looked at the rain stick and said, "Monkey!"), or just explore the sounds each piece makes.

The Critter Conga is age-appropriate for children 18 months and up. It retails for about $30, which isn't bad for so many toys held inside the large drum. It's available at Costco.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Did I forget to mention...?

Any good "C" names?

We're having a creative disagreement over this right now!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I need 3 days of uninterrupted sleep.

Because last night, I didn't get any.

Yesterday morning, Christian was coughing a little before school. I gave her some cough medicine and sent her on her way, with instructions to call me if she felt worse later.

At noon I got the call from the school nurse: she was nauseated, not wanting to eat her lunch, and coughing and wheezing.

I picked her up less than five minutes later, and gave her a breathing treatment when we got home. I asked her if she wanted anything to eat. First it was pizza, then hot dogs, then she finally settled on mac'n'cheese. So I didn't think she was super bad. I made her take a nap, and when she got up, I gave her another breathing treatment. That was close to four. By 7:30 last night, she couldn't breathe at all.

I took her to the after-hours children's clinic. They tested her oxygen saturation, and it was at 91. (The nurse told me as we were leaving that she freaked out at that point, and was ready to have her admitted to the hospital.) Her former pediatrician (who was her doc since she was born up until this past summer) was the doctor on call, and remembered hospitalizing Christian for these same symptoms when she was three years old. She gave Christian 3 back-to-back breathing treatments, using a stronger, fast-acting medication, then one more treatment of another formula. She said that if her body didn't stop "tugging" or "retracting," after the treatments, that she would have to go to the hospital for round-the-clock oxygen and treatments. Her body was working so hard to take each breath, that you could see her entire rib cage and her trachea. That's the "tugging" and "retracting."

After the three treatments, you could no longer see her ribs, but her trachea was still visible. She was still breathing very fast and shallow, but her skin and lips had regained some color. So the doctor let me take her home, as long as I gave her a breathing treatment every hour. ALL. NIGHT. LONG.

We got home from the clinic/pharmacy near 11:30. We were in bed around midnight, after the first treatment. I woke her up at 1:00 to give her another, at which point she started throwing up all over herself. We cleaned her up and put her back to bed. I woke her up at 2:15 for the next one. It went well. I don't think she even fully woke up for it. I was just afraid she was going to start vomiting again. Ugh.

The rest of the night was uneventful. If you call waking up every hour (I swear, it was worse than having a newborn!) uneventful.

I called her doctor's office first thing this morning (which her former doc wanted me to do) and they wanted her there ASAP. We were there 30 minutes later. And home by 10:30.

Basically, she picked up some virus, and he wants me to continue the treatments and medications the after-hours doctor prescribed. Except I can reduce the treatments to every four hours!!! Yea!

So that's been our night and morning so far.

I'm trying to get someone to call in an IV for me... of pure caffeine.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Happy Birthday to Cullen!

Cullen turned two yesterday, and we had his party at the kids' museum. I love having it there. No pre or post-party clean-up!

Here's the Birthday Baby (I can say that. He will ALWAYS be my baby. ALWAYS.) playing with the trains in the Education Station.

Christian and my nephew, Colton, playing in the "Doctor's Office" part of the museum.

Her cousin, Savhannah, waits for her baby to be treated.

Is this why it always takes so long at the doctor's office? Are they just in their private office talking away?

This is my niece, Caylee, on stage in the theater area. They have a wooden stage with a curtain and rows of chairs for the audience. Behind the curtain is a ton of dress-up clothes and puppets.

Here's my nephew, Cayden, playing in the mercado. They have a whole 0ld-Mexico area, with baskets of fruits and vegetables "for sale," old wooden tables where the kids can pretend to grind corn with a mortar and pestle, or make tissue-paper flowers. There's also lots of old-world Mexican decorations and artifacts.

Here's my brother, my sil (who's too skinny. I hate her. While we're on the subject, my other sil is too skinny, too. I also hate her.), and their oldest, Colton, playing around in the science exhibit. Okay. I don't hate them. I love them. I just hate that they're super-skinny and beautiful. Makes me want to crawl under the covers and suck my thumb. But I digress.

Apparently, the saddles in the country exhibit were a lot of fun.

For kids of all ages. As my brother and dad can attest to.

Here's a picture of my brother, posing with my sil's "Mini-Me," a.k.a. Caylee. Isn't she beautiful?

My personal, "Oh Dear God!" moment of the day. I wonder how many kids with snotty noses put that in their mouths. (For the record, Cullen was not sick at all when this picture was taken. Please pray with us that does not change.)

Him's my wittle baby. My baby love. He has the yummiest cheeks, ears and toes. And, oh, his hair! I could just feast on his hair!

I'll post more detailed pics of his cake later. It turned out pretty cute! I felt so bad because last year he got the simplest cake I've probably ever made. So I had to do something a little more dramatic this year.

And finally, his most favorite toy. He loved it so much, he couldn't wait until we got it out of the box to ride it. It was so sad, the way he would scoot that box along the floor, deperately whining, "Open! Open!" Finally hubs took pity on him and got it out. He loves this thing!


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christian's new look

Last Monday we went to a Thanksgiving party at Hubs' office. Christian got some raw carrots, and I noticed she wouldn't bite them with her front teeth.

So I asked her about it, and she said they hurt.

Thankfully, we already had a dentist appointment scheduled for that very afternoon.

When we got there, I whispered to the secretary that I wanted the dentist to remove her top front two teeth. You may remember this:

I can't find any pictures showing it, but one of them turned gray. He said it

was full of blood, but still alive. They were loose, but she wouldn't wiggle them. I was wondering how much longer I was going to have to look at those dark teeth! It just looked so sad.

So he took them out. She didn't feel it. There was also one on the bottom that was just hanging there (ugh!) so he just popped that one out, too.

At one point he told her, "Christian, you're going to make some money tonight!"

After he was finished, he told her to have a happy Thanksgiving, and that I had something to tell her!

She sat up and asked if he had taken out all her teeth. I asked, "What do you mean?"

She said, "Did he take out these top two in front?"

I told her that yes, he had.

She said, "So I have three teeth gone?"

I told her yes.

She said, "I AM going to make some money tonight!"

Unfortunately, the tooth fairy only had a ten dollar bill and a one dollar bill with her that night. She didn't think one dollar could cover three teeth, especially after oral surgery, so she left the ten, hoping she could get out and get change the next morning before Christian woke up.

No such luck.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Why I Hate Black Friday... and Wal-Mart

So Hubs and I wanted to get Cullen a power wheels jeep for Christmas. Wal-Mart was going to have them for $88 on Black Friday. We paid about $200 for Christian's when she was his age, so it's a pretty good deal. So we got there at 4, only to find the whole store roped off.

Hubs is very sneaky, and found where the jeeps were, so we went around all the ropes (without violating any Black Friday etiquette!) and stood directly in front of them. With about 20 other people. They were wrapped in black plastic, and apparently the rules were that at 5, the plastic would be ripped off, and insanity would ensue.

We realized very quickly the odds were against us. There were two pallets of jeeps, with 8 jeeps on each one. FOURTEEN were Barbie jeeps, and TWO were blue/boy jeeps. TWO. Out of FOURTEEN. Most of the people there were hoping for a boy jeep (we asked) but I don't think they realized there were so few. Hubs continually walked around the stack, comparing unit numbers, to reach that conclusion. One guy on the opposite side of the stack from us quite rudely and belligerantly announced to everyone who came near that "I'VE BEEN HERE SINCE 3 AM AND THAT BLUE JEEP IS MINE!"


Before I left the house, I checked online. Jeeps were available at the sale price, but they weren't offering free site-to-store shipping on it. This was about 3:30.

So Rude Guy mentioned that the jeeps were available online. I responded that the shipping costs were close to $30, with tax on top of that. He adamantly disagreed, saying he looked at 3 am (from his place in line?) and they WERE offering free site-to-store shipping. Whatever. Are you telling me that you could have ordered the jeep at the sale price with free shipping from the comfort of your own home, and yet still decided to brave the crazies??? Sure. Of course.

Anyway, 5:00 rolls around and people go nuts. Three people elbowed me out of the way. FOR A TOY! Of course there weren't enough boy jeeps. I found an employee and asked if there were more boy jeeps somewhere. He calls someone on his super-high-tech-earpiece-radio-thingy (sorry about the technical terminology; I'm geek like that) and gets the response that there ARE more jeeps being brought out right then, and they were on their way from the stockroom. He told us where to go to intercept them, and we went. No jeeps. We found the assistant manager to inquire further. She looked at us like we were crazy, and said EVERYTHING was out already. Thanks.

So we hurried to a nearby small town, hoping the majority of their shoppers had headed to us, since we're the metropolis in the area (HAHAHAHA! HOHOHO! HEEHEEHEEHE! HAHA! HO! HEE! HEE!). Sorry. I'm ready to continue.

Their jeeps were gone, and their lines were almost out the door. It was just as bad as it was at our Wal-Mart. Maybe a little worse.

So we turned around and headed home, deciding to just buy the jeep online and pay the shipping.

We got home around 6:30, only to find the jeeps out of stock online (as well as the camera I wasn't crazy enough to stand in the line that wrapped around the ENTIRE store for). Nice.


TODAY, they're available online. For $135.

Do they really think I am so stupid as to believe they sold out of them on Friday (and were still unavailable Saturday and Sunday) only to magically have more today? For almost fifty dollars more???

And while I'm ranting, what genius shipped two boy jeeps out of sixteen to our store?

I HATE Wal-Mart.

I LOATHE Wal-Mart.

I'm NEVER going there again.

Unless, of course, they get me a boy jeep for $88.