Sunday, November 27, 2016

So Behind

Sometimes you get so behind on blogging, you just shrug your shoulders and think eh, oh well!  The thing is, I want to blog about day-to-day things, because it's like a journal.  But I also want to blog about my thoughts sometimes.  Just because I like to let the thoughts flow out of my fingertips in the form of words.  It's therapeutic.  But I also want to sit down and read a good book.  And I want to...  About a million other things.  And there just isn't enough time in the day.  So I'm trying to commit to writing at least once a month here, on Sundays.  Which means it will probably always be the day-to-day (or should I say week-to-week) adventures of my little family.  And that's okay :).

So, one of the things I have yet to post is Halloween pictures.  So I'll get around to that today -- a whole month late.
 I decided to be Rainbow Brite.  Lynnaea wanted to be Rainbow Fish (she came up with the idea all by herself!  And Jeremy made it happen ;)).  And Corbin was a hatless Smurf.  I would have loved to put a hat on him, but he would never have tolerated it...  But it was cute enough.  And easy enough.  So that's what matters :).
 I found an authentic 1980s Rainbow Brite ribbon in my mom's old sewing stuff right after we moved here!  I kept it....  I mean, how cool is this find!?!

 Above is my little Rainbow Fish.  She is so precious.  And below are Corbin and I.  We went to our friends The Mitchells' house and trick-or-treated with them.  I'm thinking we may just do trunk or treat next year.  Same results with a lot less hassle!  I'm such an old fuddy duddy.
The following week we did a lot of the usual stuff:  play dates, library story time, etc.  We made a turkey craft.  I put a thankful tree on the wall and we've been adding leaves to it with something we were grateful for that day.  Lynnaea walked around outside with a pot on her head.  Silly goose.  Oh, and did I mention she wore a "dress-up" princess dress every day for about 2 weeks?  Unless we left the house, she was wearing one!  So thankful for kind friends who give us stuff like that when their kids outgrow it!  Because my girl LOVES them!

And then, since the Peanut Festival was in town, we went to the pre-school day!  Which I thought was going to be much smaller than it was.  Haha.  But it was free.  And cured me of my desire to pay to go back.  My main reason for going back would have been for fair food (since they didn't have concessions open during the pre-school thing).  But I couldn't see spending $20 to go back just to spend more money to eat.  Yep, old fuddy duddy.

And then I voted.  And watched Facebook blow up with hatred.  That was really a sad thing, honestly.  I'm thankful that's mostly past.
That weekend was the Peanut Festival Parade!  For the first time, I went and stayed for the whole thing.  It's mighty convenient that my dad lives right there a block off Main Street. We parked at his house and walked over to the parade.  The kids had fun.  The cement mixer that dropped out a bunch of peanuts in the middle of the road was definitely cool!  But we also really enjoyed the marching bands -- and, of course, my princess enjoyed all the princesses!  We took the double stroller so Lynnaea and Corbin had a convenient place to sit -- and it was shaded!

Then came the week of a double ear infection for Corbin (see previous post).  That was awful.  My poor little man.  Thankfully he is all better now! 

Somewhere along the way, I managed to snap some napping pictures.  Aren't these babies so sweet?  To see Corbin laying so angelic-like in his sleep you would never the boy is really hell on wheels.  LOL.  Oh, but he is the cutest little thing.  But just wait until I get to the selfie-stick story...  You'll understand what I mean.

We went to the Gaucho Farms Sustainable Farm Day with some friends...  It was fun.  But I was a little disappointed that I paid $15 for one picture...  Here's the picture.  Originally she said she always sends one initially and then you can work out a deal for the rest, but she usually just sends them all if you request it.  So I'm thinking she would send all 5 pictures eventually and it would be a great deal for the 5 minutes she spent taking our picture...  Alas, not so much.  Her email informed me that it would be an additional $15 per picture.  Well, you win some, you lose some.  I'm not planning to do business with her again, so there you go.  But at least Lynnaea had fun holding a baby chick (and Corbin had fun trying to strangle it...) and we got a picture ;).  Plus we did lots of other fun stuff!  Hayride, boardwalk, see turkeys and cows and chickens, sample stuff, zip-line, climb on hay bales.  It was good stuff.  Corbin wasn't interested in a picture at the end, though.

On Tuesday of this past week, we went to the library at our usual time, even though there wasn't story time...  Well it just so happened Russell the Hedgehog was out of his tank, and Lynnaea got to hold him and Corbin got to touch him!  I have pictures of Corbin touching him (and cheesing), but it's such a hassle to get photos from my phone to the blog that I'm just leaving it with this picture):
She was so excited to get to hold him all by herself!

That night, Jeremy figured out how to make the selfie-stick I bought (hoping to use it for my THRIVE business stuff eventually) work with my phone.  I didn't even try...  I am sure I would have eventually figured it out, but I ain't got time for that.  So I let him do it ;).  This is a dorky picture, but I post it for a good reason:  it's the only decent picture (of 4 total) I got using the selfie stick.
Because the next day I set it on the table so we could take it with us when we went to Georgia to visit family for Thanksgiving (thinking we might want to do a group picture while there)...  And Corbin found it.  And since Corbin's first instinct when he puts his hands on anything new is to see if he can break it...  We'll just say he found out the answer was yes.  He broke the bracket that's supposed to hold the phone in place right off the whole thing.  Ugh.  At least, since I always wait to buy stuff until it's not really cool and hip anymore, I got it really cheap.

So we drove to Georgia Wednesday evening when Jeremy got off work.  2.5 hours one way, and I didn't want to do it twice in one day with kids.  So we went over Wednesday and spent the night at my dad's cousin's house.  My dad went too.  We enjoyed visiting with everyone and had a delicious Thanksgiving dinner before heading home.  Got to see one of my 2nd cousins that I grew up with in Panama.  We both have kids the exact same age, just flip-flopped (he had a girl first).  So we snapped a quick picture before we left.  Also, my Aunt (she's really my cousin, but we've always called her aunt) Janie rented a humongous bouncy house for the kids.  And Jeremy.  It was a hit!

LOL...  He and I both look so tired in this picture. 

Anyway, we got home about 8:30 on Thursday.  The joy of having a potty-trained child is that they always have to pee at the most inopportune moments during a road trip... Like when you're on the back-roads of Georgia without a store in sight.  Sigh.  But we made it without accidents!  Woohoo!  Lynnaea rocks.

And last night we watched our Thanksgiving tradition show a couple days late :).  Gotta love some B.C. Thanksgiving!  I'm excited that Lynnaea is getting old enough to find it funny :).  Because I think it's hilarious!
And I'm calling this good!  I'm sure there are plenty of details that I missed.  Plenty of funny moments that haven't been documented... 

Oh!  But I did find out something exciting!  So for the last 3 months, THRIVE Life has had a contest for anyone who wants to participate.  Basically you create a new recipe using at least one of the items in the monthly specials.  Naturally, because I love my THRIVE and I love experimenting and trying new things in the kitchen, I decided to try it out!  I submitted a recipe for Cauliflower Tots.  And I won!!!  It was so awesome!  I won the 3 ingredients from November's specials that I used in the recipe (cauliflower, scrambled egg mix, and Chef's Choice seasoning blend) plus some freeze dried cookie dough bites!  Which is really exciting for me :).  Anyway, they posted a video on their facebook page and everything -- and granted, they totally mispronounced my name...  But that's just to be expected.  I still am really excited about winning :).  If you want to check out the recipe, you can do so here.

So yep, that's that!

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

A Mother's Love

The past few days have been a little rough around our house.  Monday around 9:30, Corbin suddenly got really fussy.  He took an early nap.  In the afternoon, he was up and down with fevers and moodiness.  I was crossing my fingers it was just his big bottom molars coming through.  Monday night he fell asleep early in my arms with a damp rag on his forehead, because he had another fever. 

Tuesday he woke up happy and fever-free.  Yay!  And then, after nap...  It was back to the fevers and unhappiness.  The clingy-ness and miserable-ness.  My poor little guy.  At one point, he had a temperature of 102.8.  I told Jeremy I just wanted my "naughty" Corbin back.  Funny what you want when the babies aren't being themselves.  Tuesday night was really rough.  He didn't sleep well, and he and I ended up in the recliner all night.  At about 2 in the morning, he woke up burning up!  I didn't take his temperature, but he was hot.  I could feel his body through his sleeper -- including his little feet through the footies.  I ended up getting him water, giving him ibuprofen, and stripping him down to a diaper.  His fever finally broke around 2:30 and he managed to go back to sleep about 3. 

This morning, I wasn't chancing it again.  He woke up fussy (but no fever -- he was probably just tired from a bad night sleep).  Even so, I called the nurse and she made an appointment for us to check his ears for infection.  And what do you know?  DOUBLE ear infection.  The poor boy.  He was so upset when the doctor checked his ears. 

The rest of the day was a story in and of itself.  And I should write it just to look back and laugh one day about the regurgitating toilet at CVS that was repulsive -- and I ended up not letting Lynnaea use it... we just went to my dad's, since he is close by.  Lynnaea talked about that disgusting toilet for the rest of the day.  Or so I can chuckle about when I went back to CVS after nap time to pick up the prescription, but since I was focused on how I almost tore my driver's side mirror off on our garage entrance while backing out, I actually forgot to close the garage door :/...  And only realized it once I was at CVS.  Yeah, it was a day full of adventures.

But the real reason I wanted to write was because, though Corbin is feeling so much better, the evenings are still the roughest part.  He spiked another fever (not as bad as the ones yesterday) and wanted me to hold him.  And I texted my mom about how he has a double ear infection and that it's been a rough few days.  And she responded with how sorry she is and how she has been there and knows exactly what we're going through.  And in that moment, I imagined my mom as a young mother with young children.  I imagined her holding me when I was sick and loving me.  And I realized how much she must have sacrificed.  How much work she must have done.  All of which went unrecognized at the time.  I get it now.  I wish I had gotten it then.  But, just like a quote I really liked (from a book I otherwise didn't) reads:  Some lessons can't be taught, only learned.  

I've learned what a mother's love can accomplish, endure, and do.  And I'm ever so grateful for my own mother, who set the example for me.  I miss her.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Outage 1: Weeks 3 and 4

Yeah, I got a little behind.  Story of my life ;).  I have my to-do lists most days, and it is miraculous when I manage to cross everything off the list.  And if blogging isn't put on the list...  Well, it definitely doesn't get done!  So now I just have to remember what we did since Fall Farm Day!

We've celebrated plenty of foodie "holidays," (no surprise there!).

So, we decorated a pumpkin for the library pumpkin contest.  It had to be decorated like a book character.  Lynnaea chose Emily Elizabeth from the Clifford books.  Her mother (a.k.a. me) has no creative or artistic abilities whatsoever.  Bless her heart.  But I guess that's okay, since it was supposed to be done mostly by the kids.  So we used a lot of acrylic paint (and had to exclude a very unhappy-about-said-exclusion Corbin, due to the fact he wanted to keep putting the paint in his mouth).  And we hot-glued on the hair.  It was a very stressful project for me, but Lynnaea ended up loving this pumpkin.  So much so that she refused to leave it a the library for it to be in the contest.  Sigh.  Oh well.  It was just for fun.  But poor Emily Elizabeth wouldn't have met her demise quite so quickly had she been at the library...  Tuesday night, Corbin managed to get his hands on her.  You should see her now.  We call her no-hair/half-face...  I'll let you just imagine.
Those were the before we took her to the library pictures...  Tuesday we took her to the library, and I hoped Lynnaea would let her "go to a sleepover party" at the library...  Corbin now gets into the car by himself -- and thinks he is the coolest ever by getting into the driver's seat.  You should see the grin he gives me...
Here are Lynnaea and Emily Elizabeth, ready to go to the library.

Then we brought her home and Lynnaea pretty much carried her around everywhere.  And swung her in the swing too.  It was really, really adorable, as I watched from the kitchen window. 
***  And now I'm even more behind.  I started writing this before my birthday.  It's now 2 weeks past that.  We'll see what I can do quickly here!  I'll just cover the rest of October (minus Halloween!).  That was pretty much when outage ended anyway ;).

So some afternoons we just sit out back and enjoy the day. Especially during the cooler days we had at the end of October!  The kids were pretending the railing was a car.  So cute!
 On one of the days Jeremy had off during outage, he was digging outside.  Turns out there are a bunch of beetle larva in the dirt, which Lynnaea thought was cool.  So she carried this one around in a shovel for a long time and called it "lorva."  Then she got brave and started carrying it in her hand. Turns out those things have pincers and it bit her.  So Jeremy squished it.  Which broke Lynnaea's heart.  The next morning, while she said prayer for breakfast, she asked Heavenly Father to bless the lorva that Daddy squished with his boot and she's not too happy about it.  Hahaha.  Out of the mouths of babes.

 Later in the week, we worked on up-cycling some THRIVE cans for Halloween.  Lynnaea helped me paint (yes, in the pretty dress) while Corbin slept -- since he couldn't paint with that paint -- he tried to eat it.  But when he woke up, I gave them the non-toxic tempura paint and let them go to town (after Lynnaea took off the pretty dress).  They pretty much painted themselves all over.

 A few days later, the weather turned nice and chilly.  We sat out in the sunshine a bit for the warmth.  I always welcome the chilly Fall weather :).
 I snapped a picture of Jeremy and Corbin on a morning Jeremy was home...  Probably a Sunday, but I don't remember.
 And then there was the day that we celebrated National Bologna Day.  With lunchables.  I love that Lynnaea poses with me for everything (and you can see Corbin in the mirror -- he had his own too!).
During the week, we did HIPPY pre-school...  One day we made puppets to go along with Jump Frog Jump.  And Corbin made his "cheese!" face.  I love this face!  More than words can say.

We acted out scripture stories one night for Family Night.
And Lynnaea had her first "real" dentist appointment with a cleaning!  She was a rock-star!
Fortunately, Daddy was off work that day (his crazy schedule), so I didn't have to take Corbin along for the ride.  That would have been stressful.  LOL.

On the 29th, we went to the Corndodgers Farm.  I wasn't super impressed, so probably won't do that again.  But Lynnaea had fun and rode a horse and held a bunny (above).  And Corbin sat on a kiddie tractor and loved that.  I'd given blood earlier that day, so I was feeling pretty crummy because it was a hot day.

 On my birthday, Corbin and I chilled.  This was right after he woke up from his nap.  Sweet little boy.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

When [I've So Far] Had [36] Years to Live

I am 36 today.  Writing that is crazy.  Because it doesn't seem possible.  36 is closer to 40 than 30.  Ha!  And, mentally, I still feel like I should be 22.  But I am not.  I am 36.  And that isn't a bad thing. (Just a weird one!)  Oh, the title is from a song that I will always love and which will always be special to me.  I can't remember the first time I heard it.  But I can remember the first time I heard about it.  You can listen to it here.  I'm pretty sure that's the first time I've ever watched that video...  I'm a little teary-eyed.

Anyway...  I've been reflecting a lot on 36 years.  The things I wish I'd have done better.  The things I'm glad I did.  The things I wish I hadn't done at all. 

I have had a full -- and blessed -- 36 years.  There has been sorrow and pain.  There has been fun that I still smile and laugh about now.  There has been joy beyond measure.  Aren't these the things that make up life, after all? 

I think of trips back and forth between Washington and Alabama.  I think of working at a funeral home.  I think of throwing loud objects in the library at almost closing time.  I think of brand new babies in my arms.  And little arms that wrap around me and little voices that call me Mommy.  I think of 80s games, and 80s movies.  I think of quilting in the back of a library.  I think of going under a library building, of rats in a library, of Marvelous Monday Meals.  I think of rain forest forts, and "island-jumping," lifeguards I crushed on as a 15 year old girl, and being asked out at that same age by a young GI.  I think of stickers (the in-the-grass-kind), theme parties, and holding hands with someone I love.  These -- and so many more memories -- just make me smile.  Some of them even make me laugh.  Truly, my 36 years have been blessed.

I do have regrets.  I wish I'd have been kinder.  I wish I'd always built others up -- especially those I love the most.  I wish I would have never caused anyone to feel like less (even if I never did so intentionally, I have come to realize that there were times I did).  I wish I'd have apologized easier and loved more.  I wish I would have been more humble.  I wish I'd have kept my mouth shut sometimes -- and spoken up at others.

And I don't intend this to be a sad, depressing thing.  Turning 36 is not that ;).  But the thing is, I can improve.  I can do all those things I wish I had done.  I can't go back and do them then.  But I can go forward.  And be better.  After all...

Every day's a new day.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Fall Farm Day!

Yesterday we went to Fall Farm Day.  It was so much fun!  We had been looking forward to it pretty much since May...  I knew it would be awesome, and it was!  And we didn't even manage to get to everything (naps must go on, you know ;)).  But all the things we did do were so great.  We will go every year, for sure!

So here's some pictures of the fun day we had yesterday.

We started out by looking at old-timey tractors!  And one of the couples there with 2 tractors invited the kids to touch them and sit on them, so they did!  And they loved it.  Corbin thought he was pretty cool stuff, and his little grin just kept shining.  This boy!
 The sun was in my face with Corbin's pictures, and I never got a really good one (and actually got 2 really bad ones where I just took a picture of the tractor :/...).  But you can kind of get an idea about how happy this little man was.
Lynnaea's picture was a much better one!  Plus, she cooperates better than Corbin does ;).

While we were looking at the tractors, a lady saw us and invited us to the big corn box.  Oh my gosh.  The kids loved this beyond words.  We stayed there 30 minutes the first time and probably 15 minutes on the way back for leaving.  We could have spent all morning there, and the kids would have been fine with it!

But we didn't...  Because, well...  I wanted to see other stuff!  We headed over to the syrup making shack.  but we got side-lined by the 4-H Club and their chickens.  So fun!  The kids even got to touch several, including a baby chick!  Check out Corbin's dimples when he's petting the chick!

We tried to watch a demo of them picking the peanuts with a machine...  But the kids got antsy before the cranked up the machine and we had to just give it up...  Sigh.  But we did check out some syrup stuff (though we didn't get to watch the whole process) and we tasted cane juice that had been fresh pressed and I bought some cane syrup.  Which Jeremy thought was beyond cool when he got home and I told him about it.  I know he was bummed he couldn't be there, because we really had been looking forward to this since May! 

By this point, it was time to eat.  So we did....  Food vendors.  Always a good thing for a foodie ;).  Then we did our obligatory family picture (thanks to Audra for always being a good sport and taking our little picture!) and Lynnaea was a sunflower :).

And then we let the kids play at the corn pit again.  And then it was time to go.  And, in case you were wondering...  It's still warm in Alabama!  After a morning at Fall Farm Day, my face was red like this :).

I know we go and do a lot!  Especially lately, with Jeremy's work schedule...  But there are also days when we just hang out at home.  Like Friday.  I went to the mall to have my eye check-up for the contacts.  2 weeks without any problems!  woohoo!  I'm so so so excited and grateful that this was an easy-fix problem.  I love having contacts I can wear!  Anyway, so my dad watched the kids while I did that.  Then we had lunch.  And then the kids played outside with water... 
So yeah, not everyday is a crazy whirlwind of activity ;).  But it is fun when it is!