Friday, February 29, 2008

The Cavalry Is Here

So here is a brief recap of the past 14 days. Two weeks ago today: Nicholas develops car sickness. We find this out on our trip to the second grocery store to buy them out of formula in an effort to stock up before dad leaves the following Tuesday for two weeks.Saturday: Nicholas is car sick again.Sunday: We move the seats in the car around in an effort to alleviate the poor guy's car sickness.Monday: Oh, he's not car sick. He's just sick. Ben looks like he's getting it too. Hmmm.Tuesday: Dad leaves. Elaine starts vomiting.Wednesday: Jenny gets taken out. Alida starts vomiting.Thursday: Mom gets taken out. Babies continue to vomit.Friday: Benjamin starts vomiting. Mom is vomiting but not sure if she's sick or sick and tired.
Cavalry Ride Number 1:
Farthing Grocery Delivery DropSaturday: No temperatures, less vomiting.Sunday: Send in the Cavalry!
Cavalry Ride Number 2:
Aunt Cynthia bravely comes by the house and plays with children for hours. Mom gets a shower that doesn't involve staring at a monitor through the shower door as soap runs in her eyes at 5 in the morning.
Cavalry Ride Number 3:
Dad drives over 3 hours home from class to spend the afternoon and help get people to bed then turns around and drives back over 3 hours to return to class.Monday: Jenny returns. Everyone is on the edge of well, but just won't commit. The doctor says the girls will be okay.Tuesday: Girls vomit again. Jenny wonders why she didn't quitWednesday: We switch to soy formula. Why won't these people get better?Thursday: No vomiting. Some people are even acting completely normal.
Cavalry Ride Number 4:
Grandma and Grandpa arrive to spend the entire weekend with their grand babies and help their daughter re-gain her sanity. Pictures to follow.Dad is due back on Sunday, and a well planned out-of-town business trip is waiting for mom on Monday.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Truth In Advertising

This one is down-right false because there is no way that kid is holding one of these things and not attempting to manipulate it unless he was a) drugged, or b) his arm was photo-shopped in there.
At least on this one they apparently didn't give the child the paints, which is a little bit closer to truth, I guess.If we kind of pretend that he's reaching out for the real one sitting there encased in plastic, the lawyers said we could get away with a clean kid.
But if you want a true picture of what you're getting in to,
Come over some Saturday after we've given in and let them play with them.
If Social Services had stopped by, which I do expect will be any day, I would have had some explaining to do since orange and purple paint soaked through a T-shirt onto dry skin looks freakishly like a battering of bruises along and ENTIRE torso. Forget fancy Halloween make-up in the future. When Patric picked up the "artwork" he had to hold it over the trash to let it drip for awhile. For the rest of the weekend--meaning for the next two days--every Chlorox wipe that ran over that table came up orangey-brown. Yum.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

It's Time Guys

No vomit yesterday. The doctor said the girls were hydrated, had fine ears, no temps and so sorry but the diarrhea will eventually stop. Go forth and get well.
And, we seem to be getting better. Elaine (on top) seemed normal this morning and Alida (above) seemed much improved, although what a great time to start teething girl.
Nicholas kicked it off quick, and Ben seems well on his way.
So mom's creative mealtimes will likely be coming to a close. It's time.

Monday, February 25, 2008

A Good Suggestions By Dad

If you can't beat 'em. Strip 'em bare. It cuts down on puky laundry.
The suggestion I won't be using is cutting holes in the bottoms of paper bags and slipping them over their heads for quick throw away.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

One Car Ride, Tonya Harding, and First Finger Foods

Car! Car! Car! was all I heard from a sick Benjamin yesterday morning. Tried the Car movie; tried the car toy; tried a car ride. The last one was what did him in even though he loved it. We couldn't really go anywhere, so we drove. We drove until he puked. Then we sped toward home.
Shhh. Don't tell daddy.*
But since Benjamin was smiling, we stopped at McDonalds on the way back to get some Sprite and maybe a sandwhich.
And on the way out of the parking lot, the phone rang. On on the other end was someone who obviously knew me named Harding. Harding, Harding, Harding. I rolled through my mental rolodex as Benjamin began to puke once again. I'm so sorry, who? The twins in Lawrence, Sarah Farthing. (exasperated at my idiocy.) Sarah! Oh, I'm so sorry. Schnucks, Schnucks, they're at your house. Huh? (Sound of Ben puking) How far are you? Thought you would be home-bound. (I've just found out that I am.) I'll call them and tell them to wait.
And when we pulled up the nicest man was sitting there waiting with a couple armloads of groceries sent lovingly from not Tonya Harding but Sarah Farthing (The Dukes mom). And that was the best part of the day because there was no way that I was getting to the store. All of our favorites (uncanny really) sat on the table--milk, cereal bars, fruit chews, chicken soup, bread, bananas, pears, Pedialyte!
And my big mistake of the day (bigger than the car ride probably) was going to the bathroom after letting my boys have noodles from the chicken noodle soup in the living room. Alida has now had her official first finger foods, and she loves noodles and crackers.
And, Elaine is the happiest sick, teething baby I've ever seen.
*The McDonalds ban is not about nutritional value mind you. Nope. My kids will be banned from the clown's place due to second amendment political stands. (Except perhaps when daddy isn't looking...)

The Ballad of Vomit

There's something funny in my mouth
There it goes, it's headed South
In a bed,
In a chair
We can do it anywhere!
On the floor,
Watch it pour
No, no Benjamin! Not the door
Down the hall,
On the ball
One more time one and all!
There it goes
Down the seat
Now we've given up being neat
Would you? Could you? In the stool?
No I can't mom, but watch me drool.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Symptoms

High Temperature. Eating okay. Cranky.
High Temperature. Not eating. Slept all morning yesterday. Cranky.
(If you can blow that photo up and see the dot of bruise on the kid's forehead, that would be from the day we were playing along nicely, and he suddenly reared back and head-butted me on the bridge of my nose. There was a whole lot of noise and confusion after that.)
Throwing up. Touch of a high temperature. Refusing to Eat. Diarrhea. Smiling the whole time (except in that picture because the blue dress apparently makes her look like a boy? I'm so horrible at dressing girls apparently. Sorry Elaine).What? Everyone is sick? Oh, I'll get that later.Diagnosis: One very long week ahead.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Playtime Is Over Girl

Darling Alida.
Playtime is over.If you are going to insist on moving around to places before unknown and stay awake so that you can continue your practice until all hours of the night and morning,we have a broom and a hammer for you. Because in this house, there are many places that need the help of a broom and many things that might be fixed with a hammer.Are you asking yourself why we don't have some age appropriate toys for the girl to play with that don't consist of long pieces of plastic to choke yourself with? We do. And she disregards them now. I can put her down in a sensory overload of soft-edge, developmentally appropriate playthings, and a minute later she is lunging for the Hot Wheels and their little tiny wheels and pieces. And so the game begins to change once again.A little sideline testament to my inability to correctly dress a girl. In that first picture, the onsie was buttoned over the tights. When she came back from the nursery, the tights were over the onsie. Is there a correct way to do that other than put her back in her no hassle pajamas?

Monday, February 18, 2008

It Begins

I took these pictures the other night so that I could tell you about what a happy baby Elaine is. Evenings before bed she is content to swing and play in her doughnut thing there, and she will smile at you across a room and laugh making your heart smile.

And then last Friday, tooth number one began it's ascent.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

My Funny, Grumpy Valentines

Valentine's Eve: all ready to love on my kids in the morning and share sweet moments.
Muffins made before letting the maniacs out of their room this morning.
Give me, give me, give me. Choco, choco, choco.
A reminder from my own mother that I am no longer her special Valentine.
The King of Hearts demands more chocolate.
The guitar, skull shirt guy broke free this morning when I let him help me put the trash out. He took off in socks and T-shirt for the sandbox. It's February; it's cold. I had to carry wriggling, complaining child back inside for his own good. How do guitars and skulls relate to Valentine's Day? Beats me. There were 2 2T shirts on the rack that day, this was one of them. I only get one shot at most things these days.
The ladies are usually morning people, but they were a bit confused.
But, they warmed up. Dear Alida even gave me a smile.
And Elaine tested out her father's crooked smile for me briefly. Which was good because my crooked-smile Valentine husband had to leave at 4:00 this morning to attend a court date for one of his soldiers East of Nashville and then go to three separate disiplinary meetings for other soldiers. Our big plans for tonight? Draw straws over who gets to sleep downstairs.
Special Valentine Award goes to Alida. The Dukes sent this via their grandma. It seems that grandma got a box of school things from a retiring nun at one point and this little gem was inside the various things. Why does it go to Alida?
So she'll have proof one day that we did not just make up her name.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Oh, Who Am I Kidding?

Two thirds of the kitchen eating area is dedicated to children.
My living room has been overrun.
Our comfy extra bedroom/separate the girls for nap time room/one parent's children's ward pretend-to-sleep on your night area. (Who's brave enough to actually come stay with us these days anyway, right?)
The kids bathroom. Surprisingly devoid of clutter.
It was never going to be anything other than home to children. Beds pushed together to avoid the clammor to shove into one bed and then get cramped and move to the floor for sleeping space.
I admit it. I live in a daycare center.
Oh, what's this? Nope. There is a pile on the buffet table there. That's where all things that need shuttling upstairs go to wait. The stack gets embarrassingly high at times.
My kitchen/baby food prep center.
My laundry room/changing station.
My bedroom/place where all outgrown things go to wait station
And, the toys are getting bigger and bigger.
It's so worth it.

What Is Wrong With THese People

Oh, hi. Wha-cha-doin'?
Oh, you already used all the sprinkles, huh? So I can't shake them around and play an instrument. Hmmm.
Oh, hi Ben. Look, there are bubbles over here.Yeah, and I found a buckle in this chair.OOOHHHH! A Chair Buckle!
No thanks.
So maybe they genuinely don't like Rice Krispie Treats? Not so. Grandma brought them last week when she stopped by and they ate them up and smiled at her, and I think I even heard them singing her praises a little bit. Hrumph.

Monday, February 11, 2008


They could have kicked back and chewed on their feet and pretended to hold their own bottles.
They could have gotten outside and played in the sunshine for the first time a good little while.
They could have been entertaining and silly.They could have ... well any number of things.
Benjamin could have let loose with an all-out smile.
They could have gotten some exercise.
Or a real nap.
Or too much attention.
Or some good couch time in front of the tv.
Or a whole lot of love.
Or hung out like good little people and not torn the house apart. But dad and I wouldn't really know because we got to spend the whole day out and about without little people. And do you know what we did? We talked about and shopped for little people. Thank you so very much Mark, Jennifer and Elvetta (who seems to have avoided the camera...) for allowing us a day to pretend we were carefree.

Overheard By Mommy During Bathtime

No. No! That's not what your toothbrush is for.

Friday, February 8, 2008

An Ode To Jenny

These people smile sweetly when she arrives in the morning (which is one of the best ways I can think of to know that we have a loving person watching our kids during the day).
We've never heard of this happening during nap time, which we really can't say for ourselves.
I've never come close to seeing this when I came home. In fact, I hear she doesn't allow them to do that, so they flip out and throw things all over the place when we arrive on the scene.
And if she has ever let them just play with their food like that, she did an amazing job of cleaning them up, washing their clothes and setting them straight before we arrived home.
Now. How much would it take to get you to come take care of bed time for us?

Thursday, February 7, 2008

The Scene Upon Arriving Home Monday

Dad, hard at work making sure the boys take a nap.
(They will no longer sleep in their beds. Now they sleep on the floor.)
All we were missing were the empty Kool-Aid cups
in this silent-as-I-walked-in-the-door house.Oh wait, it's Alida. Nope she's not sleeping. Because the girl

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Super Tuesday

As if Jenny taking the day off before wasn't bad enough, she apparently thinks she gets to take more than just one day off in any given year. Sigh.
So Monday, Patric went on duty. Tuesday, I went on duty. More on dad's day a little later, which was pretty much void of pictures. Tuesday morning started with mom running out at 6:30 to vote and coming back to grab the baton from dad who ran to vote and went off to work.
So we did a little maintenance. Nicholas' haircut went horribly since he CANNOT SIT STILL. I have now decided I must also turn him over to Audra for real haircuts.
Why aren't my children wearing pants? Because they would not let me put on their pants after the flood-the-bathroom and dunk each other bath we took to give daddy a break from bath time that evening.
I also had to give up my pants after the bath I received as well. You know it's bad when you just dunk your whole arm in the tub to pull the plug at the end and don't even bother rolling up your sleeve because it just doesn't matter. Then I don't know, it took the remainder of the day to clip 80 fingers and toes, watch some people not eat their food, listen to some people not take a nap and welcome daddy home early because they've closed everything up in town due to bad weather headed our way.
We rounded the day out in our newly designated storm shelter. No, our bedroom is not in the basement. It's not in the basement because we don't have a basement. The most interior room in the house is the kitchen pantry...hmmm. The old stand-by was the half-bath, which would hold 4 Stubers, but there is no way it will hold 6 Stubers. So we nestled in, between the interior wall of our room and our bed and wrangled children through the storm sirens.
Riddle of the Day:
You have managed to wrangle the maniacs through storm siren number one. Everyone is wound up and crazy tired from not taking naps and you finally, finally get everyone to bed. You sit down on the couch to say good night to your husband a bit later. As you say good-night at 9:30, the second round of storm sirens starts going off. Babies are all asleep upstairs. New storm shelter is downstairs in a 2X6 foot area. What do you do?One of the wonderful things about living in the South?
Last night as we watched the reports on storm siren number 2, the weather man stopped and said a prayer for eased storms and comfort for those who had been hurt.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Just in theh Neighborhood

One more National Guard Weekend down. This one without much drama really. Sunday evening, we were lucky to get a too-quick visit from grandma and grandpa and great uncle and great aunt. They arrived during naptime after making a weekend trip to the Patton museum in Ft. Knox, KY. This was a special trip to the museum because my unlce George served under Patton during WWII and has so many stories to share. They were in the neighborhood, so decided to drop by (you know because 350 miles is "in the neighborhood"). The children went down like dominos on Sunday afternoon for naps, and that is exactly how they came up from naps as well. First Elaine who welcomed everyone with a bit of stranger anxiety. Then Alida who had an all out fit of stranger anxiety. Down comes Nicholas, who is quite at home with a house full of people to love and read to him, and aunt Dolorys was kind enough to read the same book over and over. Then Benjamin, who did not want to get up from his late nap in the first place. The little guy was beside himself tired and angry with mom for getting him up. After a quick assessment of the situation, he ran straight to uncle George and buried his head in his shoulder; not wanting to be left out, Nicholas climbed up and snuggled in. And there they sat for a good half an hour. I get 2 minutes to snuggle on a good day, sheesh.

Friday, February 1, 2008

It's Genetic Apparently

Uncles Curt and Brian sleeping so peacefully (and so very uncomfortably looking). And apparently, gagees looked like cigars back in the day. And I think we now know where Nicholas gets his hair. So many answered questions.