I am ever in awe at Christmas time! Yesterday we made the 2 hour journey to the Children's Museum to see Santa! It always amazes me how emotional I can get at the site of the old man coming down the chimney. It was only a few weeks ago that my oldest son told my daughter that Santa wasn't real. How dare he! He told e he didn't but my daughter ratted him out. She was quick to tell me that she didn't believe him. I told her that I didn't either and that I believe in the magic of Santa! Because that is what I believe and I always will. I have my father-in-law to thank for that. From the time my husband and I started dating, I was never able to thank them for gifts because they were form Santa. I always thought it was funny, even after I had kids! Then last year, I realized that I truly believe! My father-in-law took us to the "real" Santa! And he is. It is the real deal. He comes down the chimney, has an elf and Snow Queen and when the kids go to sit on his knee, he calls them over by name! Of course, the queen has already asked them their names, but who cares! They tell him what they want and I take 100 pictures! And after they play in the museum, we have tea and sing carols with him and his elf, while the Snow Queen watches it all from her thrown! at the end, he reads a story and then they sit on his knee again! And at the end of the day, I thank m father-in-law and cry because I know that it is the most magical day I have experienced in a year and think it will be about 365 days until I experience this again and next year it will be all the more difficult to convince my oldest that Santa is real or at least the magic of Santa. Because we all know that you can't appreciate it unless you realize it in your heart and that is more than a 9 year old can comprehend even with Grand-daddy to guide him! But, I am all the more thankful for what I have each Christmas and what I have married into because I know that it has enriched my life and I would never have had these experiences if it weren't for my amazing father-in-law who can't sit still and has the attention span of about 5 minutes. But, he is on of the most caring, thoughtful people I have ever met in my life and thank God we have him in our family!
Well, I always said that the H1N1 virus scared me so much that the day the vaccine became available, I would march my kids right down to get it. But, why was it so difficult when the vaccine came available? After researching the vaccine and 4 calls to our pediatrician's office my husband and I decided that we would vaccinate our kids yesterday at our counties first mass vaccination event. So, I picked the kids up from school swung over to the house to get the younger ones and we all traveled over to the mall to stand in line and wait 3 hours for something I ultimately don't agree with putting into my kids little bodies. So many of my friends are dead set against the vaccine, saying the H1N1 virus is mild and the kids will do fine. But, there are kids with complications and kids dying. 219 last week in the U.S. How can they say kids are fine. Most kids probably will be fine. The defining moment came when my sister-in-law and then shortly after my sister confirming that if this H1N1 had popped up 2-3 months before it would have been in the seasonal flu shot which I regularly give my kiddos. However, when we got into the vaccination clinic, I completely broke down. My poor husband had to basically handle it all while I sat in the phone with our pediatrician's office making sure that it would be safer to give the vaccine containing Thymerisol to my kids rather than not giving it all. They assured me it was a trace amount and that the kids would suffer no ill effect. But, I hate the fact that that was injected into the little bodies. I also hate that I had to vaccinate them for this. Which then lead to a sleepless night of checking them hourly until 1:30 a.m. and beginning again at 5:00 a.m. I am still freaked out and way overly concerned! I don't know when I will calm down.
Isn't it wonderful when the crisp cool fall air finally arrives? It makes me want to be outside all day long. And so, I plan a ton of fall activities for our family during those crisp fall weekends! Some of my favorite activities include apple picking, corn maze, fall festivals, and pumpkin picking (really picking). We have done most of these activities since before we had kids, but having kids make it that much more fun! It also makes it a little hectic trying to get it all in and on everyone's schedule, but somehow we make it all work and it is my favorite time of year (minus going back to work). I just love fall. I love to run in the fall air especially in the late afternoon. I love to throw the football around with our 3rd grader. I love to watch the kids play on the front lawn and street while chatting with my husband and the neighbors. Drinking a beer always enhances the experience. My husband and I talked about doing a winery tour as a date this fall. I am so looking forward to that. I think it will have to wait until next month, but it sounds so enticing especially with the fall weather. Sitting on the deck, over looking the mountains with a glass of wine would just be so relaxing and romantic. Maybe it would light a new spark in our relationship! Oh, how I love fall!
I am in full panic mode. I am trying to make it through until Saturday without sick children and all around us people have swine flu. It is driving me crazy. I believe it is just a matter of time before we get it and I am really hoping that we will be spared period, but at least through Saturday. It is hard enough to get 4 kids into the doctor for flu shots when they only have Saturday clinics from 12-5 at the pediatrician. If I have to reschedule some people it will be very difficult to figure out logistically and truthfully one flu is too many for this mother. I am so not looking forward to it even if everyone does o.k. and it is short lived, which in my experience it will not be for us. I am not sure if my excessive hand sanitizing has weakened my children's immune systems or if I over exaggerate (although my husband has commented on this too) the severity of an illness, but we seem to get whatever it is far worse than anyone else. So I always brace for the worst. My neighbor's child has swine flu, but missed only one day of school with it. He came down with a fever on Sunday night, had a cough on Monday, positive test and was back in school yesterday (o.k. so 2 missed days of school). We would miss a week and then some probably. My daughter's best friend is currently out of school for an illness and since his mom will not answer the phone, I have no idea what he has. Hoping it is not swine flu though!!!! My daughter said he went home early on Tuesday and has not been back since. So, worried here. Looking forward to flu shots on Saturday!
So, I often think my posts are all so negative. I try not to write about negative thins. I mean who really wants to read that. But, then again who wants to live that so here is my outlet for all those negative feelings I have. If you don't wish to read than stop here because this one is negative. I absolutely can't stand working anymore. I hate my job. As I write this from my work laptop sitting at a desk at work. Please, fire me. Well, not really my family needs the money! But, seriously I told my sister last week that I think we should open a funeral home so I don't have to deal with people. And, I really mean it. I now drive from school to school thinking I would rather be planning a funeral. How sad is that? I basically need a drink (yes, I said need) when I get home every afternoon just to keep it all together. I have cried everyday since last Monday at some point while driving in my car until today when I broke down inside one of my schools. I honestly can not get a grip on this. I am not sure why. I have not hated work more in my life even the day I left my oldest at daycare for the first time. Or the day I found out my daycare providers husband had been charged with child molestation. How sad I was to think that my son spent 2 years in that house and I will never know if that man did anything to him because he was too young to tell me. I am more sick now about going to work than I was back then. There is going to be a secretarial opening at my kids school soon and I want to leave my job at take that. I need to be with them, near them and away from this place. I used to love my work! I loved the job I have the impact that I made on kids lives. But, I no longer feel that way. I now longer think it makes any difference and I no longer care if it does. I have been beat down by my employer over budget cuts and stupid reorganizations that I have to clean up after and I no longer have the energy left to fight a good fight. And honestly, I could care less. I could care less if next year I get destaffed, because quite frankly I don't know that I will make it in this job until next year and if I do I don't know what kind of person is going to be left at the end. I have no tolerance for anyone and really I think that at some point it is going to impact my teaching. And that is really sad. I basically believe that my employer does not value my job and so I don't value my employer. I have absolutely no loyalty. We are told to put on a good face and put forth a good and positive attitude. And I do, but it takes its toll and now by the third week of school, I am beat down! Just plain beat down!
Wow! I can't believe school has started. The kids are back in school, sports have started, Sunday School has begun, my sister has had her baby, and the evenings are turning cool and crisp. This past weekend we had a fire in our fire pit. We roasted marshmallows and made S'mores! It was really fun. All the kids were outside in their sweatshirts and the windows were open in the house. I love to air out the house. It is just a different, relaxed kind of feel on a crisp fall weekend. I can't wait for the fall activities to begin. Apple picking kicks it all off, in 2 weeks and we don't stop until Halloween, this year on a Saturday. While I love this time of year, I hate going back to work and hate even more the infections that begin to creep inside the walls of my home. I am constantly amping up for winter and the onset of flu season. This seems to be coming early this year with the presence of swine flu. It seems to loom over us all the time. Someone coughs and I quarantine them until I see so progression in symptoms. Last night it was my oldest, who hates it the most. He has been subjected to my paranoia the longest and I come down the hardest on him because he has the worst hygiene of the bunch. However, it is a good lesson to the others because he gets sick the most often. I have offered disinfecting wipes to their teachers and plan to send hand sanitizer to my oldest class tomorrow since they did not request it and thanks to another concerned mom received a bottle and are cleaning their hand before lunch! Will we make it to vaccine time? Only time will tell which right now appears to be 4 weeks. I have seasonal flu shots scheduled, but the swine flu vaccine has not been released so they are not scheduling appointments. When they do, I plan to be one of the first on the list!!! Four sick kids are not appealing and 4 kids with the flu are even less appealing. I want to enjoy our fall and winter. Our middle son asked me last night if we could go skiing again this year. He is growing up so fast. he loves preschool this year. I am so thankful. He hid under the furniture and didn't want to go. I am thrilled with this change. He wants to ride the school bus and join his older brother and sister. Oh, what a day it will be for me next fall 2010. I will be crying for sure. He and I have always been so dependent on each other and I will have a difficult time releasing him to the hands of his Kindergarten teacher who will of course know more than me! However, if it is the same as who we have been blessed with before, at least he will be correct. She is amazing! Oh how time flies and how seasons change. I can't wait for this change of season, to run in the crisp fall air after a day of work. I can't wait to pick pumpkins with the kids and take those all important fall photos for the wall in the living room. I can't wait for it all. So fun!!!
As a working mom I am always looking for new items that will help me keep my house clean that are quick and easy. I discovered Shout Advanced for the laundry which gets out set in stains, even after I have put them through the dryer! It works great. The new item that I have recently discovered is the Woolite Rug Stick. My hubby recently spent 3 hours (yes, 3 hours!) cleaning out my mini van. It looked great, except for the carpet. He vacuumed, but there is only so much a dry vacuum can do. So, I thought to myself I have seen something that I think would do a great job on my floor mats. And, I was right. I went to the store to purchase the Rug Stick. They didn't have it at Target so I went to my local grocery store. They had it there. I brought it home and it was amazing! It worked great even on the drivers floor mat which is the dirtiest because there is always someone sitting there. However, it got out coffee, gum, and other unrecognizable food items. It even made what appears to be grease lighter! Te car looks great and I can thank my husband and the good people at Woolite. I feel like I am driving a new car! Fantastic!
This is a good one. I might have mentioned in my previous post that I am sick of everyone in my family being sick. Well, for about 6 weeks I have thought that I have arthritis. My hands hurt all the time. Well, after I was sick on our vacation I went to the doctor. They tested me for the flu and when that was negative, they tested me for Lyme. Well based on the title of this post you may have already guessed that the test was positive. So great, a whole month of antibiotics. I am officially done nursing our youngest at almost 16 months because I have to take an antibiotic that is unsafe to nurse while taking. I am allergic to penicillin which is the first choice for Lyme if I were nursing. There are no other choices really. So, he is finished much to his displeasure. But, I have to keep him safe and take care of myself as I am no good to him with Lyme Disease in its later stages. But, I just thought, huh! How funny!
Wow, time flies! I think it is harder during the summer to find time to dedicate to something. I run most mornings and I have our youngest on a strict nap schedule but mush else is up in the air. I am about to have my first overdue library books of the summer! It is pretty crazy! I can't go a summer without having at least 10 overdue library books! I am hoping that I can get these back to some satellite library book drop so they are not too overdue! I have not done nearly what I want to do with the kids. And, I have had a difficult summer emotionally speaking. It has been difficult knowing that I will go back to work to a completely different job and a major challenge as far as my professional career is concerned. I have this whole swine flu thing hanging over my head. I run from anyone who appears sick. And this has been quite summer for sickness. We have been sick and so has everyone else we know. I cant remember a summer like this before. I was even sick last week. I went to the doctor. You know it is bad when mom goes in! Time has really flown by, we have not gone out for ice cream, but then again we cant afford it. But, who are we kidding, no one else can either. I did however spend $160 to outfit my daughter for school. Because ass we know she has to be the best dressed in her class! Sarcastic? And so on Sunday after a month of worthless, painful, awful runs; I had the best run of the summer! I ran 5 miles, a far cry of where I should be for my marathon training. It felt so good. My knee hurt so bad when I left the house and I limped through the first mile. Then, it started to feel better so I ran a bit further and then it started to rain. I love running in the rain so I ran the full 5 miles that I planned to run when I thought about it the night before. It was great! It not only felt good, but it cleared my head and got me back on track. I even did pudding painting with the kids today! Oh the power of a run!
Here I go again. I have not stopped since our last vacation which began on July 4. We went to the OBX, NC. It was a blast. While I was there, I might not have said the same. We went with my husbands family which was wonderful except that my niece and nephew threw up the second night we were there. Yes, we got it. Of course! We get everything! I cant handle vomitting illnesses! They drive me crazy. On top of that our youngest ended up with hives for like 3 days while we were there (the last three days). But, all in all traffic included it was a great and memorable trip. I would do it again in a heartbeat! So we are back for a week and a half and headed out again. This time we are going with my family, which is proving to be a little difficult as well since my dad has all these ultimatums placed on this trip. Really I think he doesn't want to go and he is just looking for excuses. I am waiting for the daily phone call for something else I need to change in order for him to go. I am at my wits end! At the present time I am waiting for my hubby to finish staining the deck so that I can start packing and take our oldest to a birthday party. Oh the joy of a pool party. I have to sit there for 2 hours so I make sure my child doesn't drown in the community pool. Lets hope no one throws up or poops in it while we are there. See how I always look at the positive side of things! HA!
Wasn't my last post about how much I love summer? Well, so far, I am a bit overwhelmed by the upcoming trip we have planned to the beach. We have built it up so much that I am so fearful something will happen to sabotage it. My oldest went to his football party last night where the coaches son was sick. I was convinced and still am somewhat that he will be sick come Saturday morning when it is time to leave. I have not started packing yet. This would jinx the whole trip! I am surprised I even have some of the stuff I need. I do still need to make one run to the store tomorrow for the last odds and ends, mainly some food to get us through the first dinner and breakfast in case we don't get there until after 4:00 p.m. on our arrival day. I always like to have everything planned with contingency plans in case something goes wrong. It is best especially with 4 children. A friend of mine just got back from a beach vacation with her 4 kids. They totalled their car on the way down. They still enjoyed their trip. They are like that, very laid back. I wish I could be. I need to learn how to reduce the stress in my life and how not to let it bother me. It is crazy how something out of your control can eat at you! I am hoping to take everyone to the pool this afternoon. I am exhausted as usual and hope that will revitalize me for the evenings activities whatever they may be. So hopefully tomorrow will bring a productive day of packing and healthy family so that we may make our trip to the beach and enjoy this vacation that I have built up for several months. I'll let you know how it goes!
I just love summer. This week has been great so far. We have done a bunch of stuff around the house. We have played with the kids and gone to the pool. Our middle son did not want to go to swim lessons or even get into the pool. But, he conquered his fear and took his swim lesson like a big boy and even swam in the pool back in the neighborhood later in the afternoon. It was great to see! He has done well with it the rest of the days this week too. My husband and I went out to dinner tonight. It was so yummy! Thanks to my sister and her husband who came to watch the kids so we could get away. It is nice to have them so close, not just to hang out with, but to babysit swap too! After we returned from dinner, we played outside with the kids. They played in the water table (literally) and then I started squirting them with the garden hose. They loved it. At the conclusion of that we came inside to get PJs on and had a little dance party before going to bed. I guess it takes the death of a famous singer (Michael Jackson) to bring the family together for a good ol' dance party! The kids had a blast. Although, somehow our middle son injured his nose and then ended up with a headache. I hope he is o.k. Pretty freaky! So tomorrow, I get to go mini-golfing with my daughter and her teacher from this past school year. It is weird to say past school year. Can't believe it is over. But, for my sake am glad it is. Can't wait for the pics from the mini-golf and to scrapbook that page. I am just loving my digital scrap booking software! Fun, fun, fun!
Today is the day! Yes, it is Father's Day, but it is also the day my marathon training begins. My poor husband! At least for his sake I ran less today than on Mother's Day! I am trying to figure out which training program to use and when I am going to fit in the increased level of training required to complete and do well in this marathon. I am 18 weeks out from the start and am overwhelmed by the thought of running it. However, at various times during my half marathon training, I was the same way and look how that turned out (brilliantly). Although, I do need to be more committed and do a better job of sticking to the training program because I can't just run and hang on until the end like I could during the half marathon. So, 5-6 days a week of running begins today. My goal is to complete the marathon in less than 4:30 and be able to go to work the next day. It is interesting to read some Mommy running blogs and talk to various people about training and when they find the time to train. It is just so hard to find the time with work, kids, PTO commitments, church commitments, and trying to give my husband some free time. It is hard. Running is my free time and that is work. Don't get me wrong, I love it. I love to run! But, if you gave me a choice of going out with the girls in the neighborhood or running, I would pick going out. I love my friends too. So balancing it all is difficult and now with this marathon coming up, I have to be even more proficient at balancing my time. So, I will get up early, run late in the day, and try to be the best Mom and wife I can be and go to work and do my job all because running is important to me and to my health. One of the best gifts I can give my kids is a healthy mother and instill a love of having an active lifestyle whether it be running, swimming, soccer, baseball, biking. I just want them to be active and healthy for a lifetime!
I have been on the "edge" for over a week now. Friday night, I finally fell off! I got an email about work in the late afternoon on Friday (right as I was getting dinner on the table). It said I would be working at a specific school two days a week. Unfortunately, it is going to add about an hour total on my commute each day and probably means I will be giving up all my students! I am still not sure about it and whether I will continue with my job or not. I still have a ton running through my head and need to continue to let it sink in a bit more. It is not the actual job or the fact that I will be school based. I knew that, but it is real now. It is also the commute. I am seriously dreading it! There has been so much going on between the kids sports, work, trying to manage the house/laundry/cooking, and running (just to name a few), I have felt overwhelmed and it has all been building up and I just couldn't let it out (crying). After I received my email, the flood gates opened! And they really have not stopped. I had no idea you could go to bed crying and wake up crying the next morning. I also didn't know it was possible to cry while on a 4 mile run! I also thought running was supposed to be therapeutic. I was hoping I wouldn't have to pay for therapy or try to fit that into my already crazy life. This morning I found myself cooking up a storm. It is what I do when I am stressed. I find it therapeutic. I made muffins, eggs and toast, the most perfect peanut butter and jelly sandwich my daughter will ever eat, Jello, and the list goes on. I hope by the end of the week this will all have sunk in, I will be fine with my job and I can enjoy the summer! I love the time I get to spend with my kids, the relaxed lifestyle we live and that I get if only for 10 weeks (or less depending on the summer) to be just a Mom which is what I just want to be every day. Without working. If only...
So, I finished this half marathon, I ran a 5K this past Saturday and now it is hot and I have no motivation to go out and runt his afternoon. I also have no motivation to do anything else. I will probably end up taking the kids to the pool. They get off the bus just before it opens and it is usually the first thing they ask me when I see them. I am inclined to go before dinner tonight since my husband will be a little late coming home from work. However, I was thinking of trying to convince him to take the family to IHOP (kids eat free on Tuesday evening). I am not sure though. I am trying to loose some weight for the summer and it is already upon us (summer that is). I guess I could attempt to eat healthfully if we go. I guess I need to sign up to run some more races so I can get my butt in gear. I need something hanging over my head to motivate me right now. Isn't that terrible? I am usually a driven person, but I am tired after a long school year and am longing for those lazy summer days. I just love summer. It i not just the weather, but the relaxed attitude I have (or at least more relaxed attitude than normal). So, maybe if I have a race hanging over my head, some plans to work with my daughter on her reading this summer and a commitment to spend more quality time with the kids I can hang in there for the last 13 days of school and drive it home! Or at least I can hope to!
My half marathon was this past weekend and it was amazing! I had an absolute blast! I have to give a shout out to Ali and David. Ali, my sister made it possible for my husband to accompany me to the race. Thanks for coming over at 4:30 a.m.! David is my brother in law. He picked up my race packet for me. I didn't have to make the hour long trip twice in one weekend. Thanks! Back to the race, it was amazing. Did I already say that? I am addicted to the half marathon. I realize I have only run one, but it was so fun. The race itself was certainly challenging, specially since I did not train as much as I should have, but, I did not walk and I almost reached my original goal which was 2:10. I ran 2:15.51! I was psyched. Eventually I hope to run the half faster than this, but it is a good start for me! I loved the atmosphere and just running. People have asked how I can do it. I just love to run. I think you either do or you don't. If you love to run, then it is not hard. If you don't well, you don't. I am already overwhelmed of my next goal which is running a marathon. I am registered for October 2009! 16-20 weeks of training await. Early morning and evening runs are a must this time around. There is none of this wait until hubby gets home and then go for a run, maybe! I have to get my butt in gear and go. However, I am taking this week off. I might run Friday if I can't make it until Sunday. My body needs it though. After running yesterday, my knees need the rest!
Happy Mother's Day! It is fast approaching and the topic of every phone call and conversation between my mother and I are what are we going to do for Mother's Day. I don't know about you, but as I mother I am finding it hard to come to terms with this Mother's Day dilemma. I want to celebrate at home with my children, enjoying their company and not worrying about grocery shopping. laundry, or other household chores. However, I do feel compelled to recognize my mother for all her efforts over the past year, not only for me but my children as well. And then, I also feel it is important to recognize my mother-in-law for the same reasons. So, what do we do? Go out to dinner? No, too expensive with a family of 6! Stay home? Well, then I get stuck cooking at least part of the meal. So, what is my solution? Brunch at my house. It means the house has to be clean, but I can do that Saturday (not Mother's Day). I have to cook. But, at least I am cooking in the morning. And I will have the rest of the day free to enjoy my family and play with my kids! Brilliant!
Well, it didn't take long. After spring break, I felt so good! I had organized the garage, we pulled out our nasty bushes in the front of the house and mulched, and we had our new swing set installed and cleaned that area of the yard up. It was so nice having gotten that all done. I am so had time to relax and hang out with the kids. The kids were so well behaved. I think that is because we did constructive things and I gave them more attention than I am able to give while working. Now, just two weeks later, I am completely frazzled! My daughter had strep last week. My middle son has Fifths Disease now. I am worried about my pregnant sister. And the biggest fear I know have is Swine Flu. I am in a complete panic! I am worried sick! I am praying that it does not become a world wide pandemic. On top of all that, the kids Fun Fair at school was this past weekend. I am the volunteer coordinator of the PTO and spent the whole weekend at the school and organizing volunteer information. I am still not done as I need to total the hours for each classroom teacher. My house has become total chaos! I am behind at work! Totally forgot about a meeting this AM. It is crazy! I am counting the days until the end of the year! It can't come soon enough.
Weird title huh? This past Saturday was my son's 1st birthday and in my grand tradition, I had to call in reinforcements. My sister has helped me with every 1st birthday party and many other parties over the years. Two hours before this party was to start, the cakes had not been decorated, the house had not been cleaned, and I was not even close to ready. Thank goodness she was able to come over and help out. She said I would have been able to do it without her. But, there is no way! I was still getting stuff out when people were arriving. How could I have done all the things I did plus all the things she did too! Silly girl! Anyway, we had a great party and a fabulous weekend celebrating the birthday! I can't not believe how quickly kids grow. I also can not believe that almost immediately after my son turned one, he became a true toddler. He was a baby last week, but he is communicating and climbing and walking everywhere. He plays with toys appropriately and really is a little boy now! It is bittersweet. I love to see him grow and who he is becoming, but I will miss that baby as I do all the others. Since he is our last it is all the more difficult. But, I have all that growing and fun stuff to look forward to! I wonder what is in store over the next year?
Yesterday I had a great idea for a keepsake craft and I am so eggcited with the results! I decided to make wooden Easter eggs with the kids. I want to do this each year as a craft we do together. When they are grown and out of the house, I will be able to decorate with these eggs and think of days gone by. Or, I could pass them along to them as they move on and start their own families. Because I have to have instant gratification, I went out and purchased the eggs and paper grass to put in my glass bowl that I will display the eggs in on the table for the Easter season. We made the eggs after the kids got home last night. They are beautiful! My two oldest were really into it. My middle son, not so much! The baby of course didn't make one. I am crazy, not insane! At least not yet! So, we painted the base coat before dinner and after dinner, everyone went down to the basement, and painted before bed. There was no guidance. I told them to paint what they wanted and they turned out great. My mom loved them and wants my nephew to make one too. Hopefully he will make one at his house. He is only 2 and I can't imagine how much paint will be on him and the house when he is finished. Probably more than there is on the egg. My sister loved the idea. I told her the bottom of the eggs were flat so she could just set the one on the window sill. I had each child make two and I made a couple myself. Thought I would share my ingenious idea for a keepsake craft that actually worked out!
I think I might scream! We are sick yet again! This time the baby has a fever and is absolutely miserable. I am hoping it is what my nephew has, but you can never be sure. It seems like he might have the flu. But, it seemed like my nephew did and his swab was negative. I am hoping the baby will not have a fever tomorrow and feel better. But, I am not holding my breath. I am however hold my breath to see if anyone gets the stomach virus that appears to be going around. I was at the kids school this evening for a PTO meeting and half the people there had sick kids. Two people there had children that were sent home today, another whose child was vomiting, had diarrhea, and 102 fever. Apparently, Strep is going around. 4th grade has the flu. No wonder we are sick and just can't seem to get healthy. What is going on in this world that every year we just seem to get more and more gnarly stuff going around? It just blows my mind. I was never as sick as my kids get when I was a kid. I guess it could be due to the over use of antibiotics as the doctors say. Huh! Something to think about the next time you go to the doctors office.
It has been a crazy few weeks. I assume you might have guessed that since I have not posted in a long time. First, everyone in the house ended up getting sick. I have sent over $120 at the doctor in co-pays in the last 3 weeks! I have spent close to $20 at the pharmacy on prescriptions and even more on over the counter medications. And, that is not even the worst part. The kids have been miserable. No one has slept well and we have been super busy on top of that! Two of our children had birthdays last week. We had 3 parties this weekend. One for each of the two children with birthdays and then a family celebration for both. We did them all on Saturday. It was a lot of fun. I had planned a good portion of both parties before hand so it was not too difficult, but I was in the doctors office several times last week and had to work so it made Friday a little more hectic than I wanted. But, it all went off without a hitch, until last night when I crashed. I was dizzy and tired and fell asleep nursing the baby to bed. This of course did not give my husband and I any time to talk about anything or get anything ready for the week. So this week has begun in craziness, as usual. We will get through it and it will be fine. I will try to organize again next weekend and the cycle will continue. The kids had a great time at their parties. We decorated our own cupcakes. At one party we made shrinky-dink necklaces and the other had football training camp in the light rain that fell in the afternoon. It was a wet mess, but those kids had fun out there. It added to the atmosphere of the training camp. And I only had one extra load of laundry (towels) because of it. I am hoping that today's well check up for those birthday children ends my doctor visits for a while (like the rest of the month). And that the weather will break and with it will leave those nasty germs that have been making us sick. I hear a stomach virus is going around my kids school. I hope we are spared!
As I get older, I find myself thinking a lot more about my childhood. Maybe it also has to do with the memories I want to creat for my children. I have fond memories of my childhood and many of them involve extended family. As time goes on I have come to realize jsut how short a lifetime is. I never imagined my life without my grandparents. One of my grandfathers passed away when I was 2 and I do not remember him. Another grandparent passed away when I was 25. I of course have fodn memories of her. Even in her later years when she was ill, I have memories of the funny things she would say and just spending time with her especially after I met my husband. She always remembered him, even if she did not remember me. My other two grandparents are still alive and in the mid-ninties. My grandmother has been in a nursing home for several years now and she just seems to be holding her own. She does not remember anyone and she just seems to exist. This is certainly not how I remember he and not how I want to. But, it is the now! When I lasted visited her, I saw her DNR bracelet. My initial reaction was sorrow. I was so sad to see that on her wrist, but then in talking to her, I realized that she is old and her mind has worn out before her body and she is just waiting for her body to wear out. My grandfather on the other hand lived alone until just this past fall. He moved to an apartment in a complex where his daily meals were prepared and there was someone to look in on him from time to time. Activities were available and he enjoyed this facility. Unfortunately, a week and a half ago he fell and broke his hip. My concern is that he seems to be going down hill rather quickly. I feel the need to visit him because I am not sure how much longer he will be around. However, my fear s that I will not see m "grandfather" but some man I have never met. He has changed a lot since my grandmother passed away, but every once in a while I see him again. I never thought this strong man could be broken down into what he has become. I know he hates this a we all do. But, time marches on. It makes me fear for my parents and myself and ultimately my kids. I think that my children will go through this all too soon with my parents and then with me. So my hope is that I can make memories for my kids that will last their lifetime. And that I make the most of everyday!
Sugar Cookie Dough 2 C. Flour 1/4 tsp. Salt 3/4 C. Butter at room temperature 1 C. Sugar 1 Egg 1 tsp. Vanilla
Mix flour and salt and set aside. In a separate bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla until blended. Gradually stir in flour mixture well blended. Flatten dough. Wrap and refrigerate until firm enough to roll (2 hr.) Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease cookie sheet. Four surface, roll dough to 1/4 in. thickness. Cut hearts with floured 3 inch heart shaped cookie cutter. Place 1 in. apart on cookie sheet. Chill and re-roll scrapes. Bake 8-10 minutes. Cool 2 minutes on cookie sheet, then move to wire rack.
Beat sugar and milk in bowl with mixer until smooth and glossy (2 min.) Divide into 4 small bowls. Add 1 drop food coloring to icing. Cover icing when not in use. Place 1 tsp. icing in center of cookie and spread to 1/4 in. of edge.
So, in the grand tradition of my over-extending myself, I have once again proved to accomplish just that. Yesterday began the Valentine Celebrations for my children. Our middle son, had his preschool Pancake and PJ Party. This is a tradition at his preschool. All of our other children have done this. Since I can't volunteer to come in, I always send in something they need. Since I am cheap and I already had pancake mix, I volunteered to provide the class with 10 thin pancakes. The kids had to eat breakfast yesterday anyway, so I figured it was only a few extra minutes. It proved easy enough and the baby enjoyed pancakes since he no longer wants to be fed by someone else (but that is another post). I had a late meeting yesterday so my husband, God love him offers to make Snickerdoodles because our oldest child requested I send them in for his class party. I volunteered to send in cookies. I have this great sugar cookie recipe my mom gave me. I loved these cookies as a child. Our whole family loves them and when I make them it brings me back! But, our oldest requested Snickerdoodles. And I love him. So at 6:30 I started making Snickerdoodles. I finished at 9:45. Luckily Survivor was on (DVR)! And now, today I will volunteer at my daughter's class party. It will be great! I am leaving in just a bit to go over there. I can't wait! And even though, I have once again over-extended myself, I feel like my kids appreciate it even though they have no idea how close I was and am each time to not pulling it off. Somehow I pull it off each time. I am sure one of these days it will not happen and my plans will have to be changed. I will have to run to the grocery store late at night to purchase something I was supposed to cook. But, until that day I will continue to over-extend myself for the love of my children.
What is it about beautiful weather that makes me change my attitude? I love winter. But, it has been warm here this week. It has been nice getting the kids out of the house and playing like we do in the spring and fall. Yesterday my daughter went to a friend's house after school. I was home with the boys. They had to finish their valentines for their classes. It was so nice sitting there with them. They did such a good job. Then after 45 minutes of making valentines, we went outside. We played for about 30 minutes before having to go in to make dinner. My oldest had basketball so I had to have dinner on the table in time for him to leave. He begged me to stay out and play, but I had to cook. I am big into having a meal on the table and eating as a family no matter what. So we went in. The rest of the evening was complete joy, making valentines with my daughter and giving the kids a bath. Everyone was so well behaved. It was really nice. I didn't get frustrated and had a lovely evening!
I am so tired. It is finally all catching up to me. I way over-extend myself. It drives my husband crazy. The other night I told him I was giving up Spirit Night Chairperson for the PTO and I think he almost fell off the couch. He was so happy. I am currently room mom for one of our children. It took restraint for me not to volunteer to be the room mom for our oldest child. I am the spirit night chairperson, and volunteer coordinator for the PTO. I am the VBS Director at church. I am a team leader at work and on top of all of those things, I try to be super mom. Unfortunately, I feel that I often do not spend enough time with my kids. I mean really spend time with them. I am in the room with them, but I just sit and watch them. I feel I shouldplay more with them and organize more activities. I am currently working on a Valentine's Day project with the older two. We are making heart shaped crayon cookies as valentines for their classes. I need a total of 55. I currently have 36. Not bad with a week to go. Then we have to assemble them. My sister challenged me to let one holiday go by and not make anything. I can't do it. It is not in me. However, what is, is the desire to spend more quality time with my kids. The St. Jude radiothon was on today. It just kills me to think about those kids and their parents. And, you never know. I don't ever want to look back and regret anything with my kids. So today, I am making a change that I am holding myself accountable for. I am going to do this. It will make a difference in my life and the life of each of my kids.
My sister and I have been discussing this post for a few days. My 4 year old's birthday was earlier this week. He chose hot dogs for his birthday dinner. However, since it is winter I cook them in crescent rolls in the oven. He doesn't like them that way though. So I asked my husband to grill them. This would be been bad enough just due to the cold weather, but it was sleeting! The weather was absolutely miserable when my husband went out to grill the hot dogs. But, he loves our 4 year old and wanted his birthday dinner to be exactly right. So my amazing husband stood outside and grilled those hot dogs. I did take some pictures of my husband grilling the hot dogs. It will make a nice scrapbook page, someday when I have the time to scrapbook.
Wow! It has been almost a week since we have been back from our family vacation. It is amazing how time flies. We went to Snowshoe, WV courtesy of Bama and Grand-daddy! Thank you so much. It was an amazing trip. The kids took lessons. The two oldest did so well that by the third day, we were able to ski with them in the afternoons and I didn't have to bend over someone for us to get down the mountain. They just skied, all by themselves. I never thought this day would come. Our 3 year old hated it! He doesn't like being cold and it was cold. He also got sick and we made him ski anyway. How terrible! We are the worst parents ever! In our defense, we didn't really think he was sick. He complains a lot. so when he told us his stomach hurt, we thought he was making an excuse so he didn't have to go out. However, within 30 minutes of returning inside, he had diarrhea several times. Luckily, it was short lived and by 8:00 p.m. he was bouncing off the walls! We went in the pool while we were gone which was a blast, had dinner out which was crazy and just enjoyed some quality family time together! We are so blessed to have had my husband's parents take care of the whole trip for us. It was truly one of the most generous things anyone has done for us. While we were there, I was reminded of why I wanted 4 kids. I love my family. I am the luckiest woman alive to have been blessed with 4 beautiful children, everything I ever wanted! It is crazy here most days. The kids don't behave. We are tired and can't wait to sit down in the evening. But, while I was on vacation I had the opportunity to look at the kids and see the smiles on their faces and to have some quality time with each one of them and I realized just how much I love my life! And for that I can not thank my in-laws enough!