Monday, November 26, 2007

Hot or Cold?

Ever feel like you're playing a game of "Hot or Cold?" with one of your kids, only you don't realize you're even a player until you've been in the game for a while? The other day I could hear my 3 y.o. screaming from the bathroom. I went in to her screaming something like, "Pah-th-wha-(yadayadayada, scream-scream)-rah-nah!!!" I just looked at her and said, "Uhhh, run that by me again...!?" Again the, "Pah-tha-wahl-tah-yadayadayada-(SCREECH)-naaaaaaah!" She was upset, to put it mildly!!!!! This went on for a bit, with me attempting to occasionally decode the message, only to be met with higher-pitched screams OR, a time or two, lower-pitched screams and slightly more relaxed facial muscles. Then, as I would reach toward her, the pitch would get higher! It suddenly dawned on me, "OH, I believe I'm participating in one of those 'Hot or Cold' games, Toddler Style!" Whenever I get hotter, the screams begin to subside, whenever I get colder, the screams intensify!!! Somehow, some way, I finally figured out that she needed the water turned warmer, RIGHT NOW!!! Once I got it figured out, she quit screaming and was my friend again! Ain't life simple? :) I think the reason she got so distraught is that she may have been screaming for me for a bit but I was in another part of the house and didn't hear her at first. By the time it had escalated, I had no choice but to hear her but then she was at the point of no return!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

An Embarassing, Make That A VERY Embarassing, Moment to Share!

Okay, this one, I'm quite sure, takes the cake in one of the most embarassing moments in history! I would almost skip some of the details except that's what makes it quite humorous at the same time.

Last week I had to call my oldest daughter's teacher but couldn't find her voicemail extension number. Instead of wasting a lot of time looking for it, I just called the office and asked to be put through to her voice mail. As the receptionist was putting me through, I suddenly had the urge to go to the bathroom, really bad! I opened the bathroom door to find my six y.o. sitting on the throne. The phone was still silent, no greeting had yet come on, so I quickly lowered the mouthpiece of the phone to my chin and very quietly whispered, "Are you almost done? I have to go bathroom really bad!" Then I decided to add, since she just looked so relaxed and wasn't moving, "The poop's almost coming out!" to which I heard a crisp, "Thank you! If you would like to add to your message, press...." To that, I could only slowly lower the phone, quietly click the phone "off", and (still whispering) say, "I cannot believe I just said that! I cannot believe I just left her that message!!!" Greta could only just stare at me and ask, "Huh? What did you just say?"

I waited at least 10-15 minutes before I dared to call again, this time looking up her extension on the school website. The second time, there was a nice greeting, "Hello! You have reached..." so now I can just cling to the hope that it didn't go through to her voicemail since I know that there was no greeting or a beep, warning me that my end of the convo was going to be recorded!!!! The one problem I do still have though is that I'm quite sure that they have caller ID because once when I was being put through to my daughter's room, the phone got cut off just after it got answered in the classroom, before I could identify myself. Holli called me back within seconds, saying, "My teacher told me you just called!" So, someone at that school was left this very confidential information on their voicemail and know exactly who had to go really bad that day!!! I still can almost feel that mind-numbing embarassment as I think about it! :s

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Our Baby's Growing!

Isabella's 8 weeks old today! Just yesterday she weighed in at 9 lbs, 9 ozs. Isn't it weird to think that our Sofia was born at 9 lbs, 8 ozs and was 9 days early? I think that Isabella was a little bigger but possibly lost a little ground when she was sick. In this picture she was just leaving the hospital, hence the sticky things still on her cheeks...they were to hold the oxygen tubing in place.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Dog Training At Its Finest!

upper left: Beg....beg...up! Like this! UP, UP! OUCH! (scratched my face)

upper center: Okay, good Mac! That was pretty close! Good beg! Here's your teeny little piece of dog food! Good boy!!! (good thing he doesn't demand steaks..he's easy to please!)

upper right: U-u-ummm...okay, can you find the differences from upper center to upper right? Can you find, let's say, maybe 3 differences between the pictures? Well, neither can I! I think it was somehow mistakenly uploaded twice. How could have that happened? I'm sure it was the computer cause I don't make mistakes on this contraption! I am completely, 100% computer illiterate..I mean literate!!!

lower left: Okay, that was a perfect "beg" but you cleared the floor by about 6 inches! Careful there, Buddy! Here's your treat...this time a tiny scrap of pork fat from our pork chops....I know, I could eat the whole chop in one chomp but I do have a family to feed other than you two canines!!! (fast forward by about an hour or two and guess who had diarrhea? He got too many pieces of pork from everyone, feeding him and Hailey their scraps. Hailey takes it like a trooper...we can tell she ate only people food before she came to us.)

lower right: Okay, Dude! Since when did "beg" or "up" sound like "dance"? I refuse to shuffle around with the likes of you, especially with those long nails!!! Go get a pedicure or something!

Notice a little lady sitting in her crate in the background looking like, "Hey, I could do that sooo easily!" She is a great begger. We have only had her for a couple months, much of which I've been laid up so we haven't been able to get the two totally acclimated to each other. Hailey would ignore Mac or just socialize with him but Mac, still the puppy he is, wil not leave Hailey alone for anything until we step in, make him submit to her, then he kinda leaves her alone for the rest of their time out together! Typical boy!!! :)

Okay, now if anyone could match up the labels with their rightful pictures, you're good! I laboriously did labels for each picture according to how they were set up on the draft page and then when I went to "view blog", I noticed that this goofy machine just messes with you! It set it up totally different than it had been arranged on the draft page!!! AND I am noticing that I didn't actually upload the same picture twice! When I came back to make this note, I noticed the captions shifted somehow and when I went back and looked, the duplicate picture was GONE!!! Too weird!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Back to the hospital we went!

We made a kind of unexpected trip to the Children's Hospital on Wednesday and just got home today! I didn't even think that Isabella was sick, just was recovering from a cold, when I noticed her chest retracting Wednesday morning. I had noticed the afternoon before that she was sleeping more than usual but just thought that she was in a growth spurt. I also noticed Tuesday evening that she had hardly eaten all afternoon so I pumped and gave her a bottle, which she drank just fine.
Wednesday morning she wasn't drinking again and when I sat her up from trying to nurse her, I noticed that she was breathing weird. I decided to lay her down in her bassinet and check her chest. When I lifted her onesie, I noticed her chest sucking in between her lower few ribs and her stomach bulging out when she breathed, which is retracting. As a nurse, I knew this wasn't a good sign so I rushed her to the Children's Clinic and after observing her for a little while and giving her a neb, the pediatrician put her on oxygen immediately because her oxygen saturation level began to drop and called an ambulance to the clinic. At the hospital, since she was lacking other symptoms (no fever, not much of a cough, etc.), they did a full run of tests, from spinal tap for meningitis to chest xray, full blood test, RSV test. She tested positive for RSV and they found infiltrates in her lungs which they first thought was pneunomia but after the 48 hour blood panel came back negative, they realized that the infiltrates were from the RSV.
We had an exciting few days and are glad to be home in the routine of things!!! Just as a side note, how on earth are the pediatricians, interns, residents, and med students so young??? Do they begin their medical training in junior high? I swear I could have given birth to a few of those kids! The first pediatrician (mind you, a pediatrician has specialized a bit beyond general MD I believe) that met me in the ER seemed slightly older than my 15 y.o. nephew! How scary!!! Seemed to have a brain in his head but it doesn't do much for me to be talking to a kid that still has peach fuzz on his chin!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Our Little Secret!! ;)

Okay, I know that this is old news... this was about a week ago already. I just haven't had time to post for a while.
Last weekend, I knew that time changes back one hour but in the rush and hubbub of Sunday morning, trying to get out the door for Sunday School and church with now six kids and minus a husband because he's in England for work, I didn't feel it necessary to change the clocks back right then. You know how hard it is to get out the door with children of any age but especially with a new baby....feed..check! burp....check! change diaper....check! wipe top of head, neck creases, and behind ears with baby shampoo on cloth and rinse....check! slather a little baby lotion on rest of body so she smells like she just got a full bath.....check! put on clean "church outfit".......check! go back after getting other kids ready, pick baby up to put in warm fuzzy suit....she smells poopy....rechange diaper....lay her back down....she spits up all over "church outfit"........start all over!!!! The important thing was that I knew the correct time! Out the door we went, got to Sunday School, sat through church, then went home to potty dogs, eat lunch and continue on to my sister's for the day. Her husband was gone for the weekend on a hunting trip so after our visiting went late into the evening we decided to just stay for the night. I ran home, pottied and fed the dogs, and went back to my sister's. Late the next morning we headed back home. I kept noticing that day every time I sat down to nurse the baby that I hadn't yet changed the clocks back. Just as evening was approaching and I began breaking out in hives at the thought of starting the typical bedtime's torturous for me, not the kids!....a light bulb went on over my head! I decided to conveniently wait until after the kids went to bed before turning the clocks back!!! I felt just victorious as I began pushing kids toward their beds, telling them, "Hurry up!!! It's getting so late, it's way past your bedtime!" I probably should have felt at least a twang of guilt but I didn't feel even a drop of it! I was just gloating over my moment of genius! One of my kids, Olivia, absolutely loves her sleep! It is so not my side of the family thing! Unfortunately, most of the kids take after me and would be night owls if we allowed it. Anyway, Olivia came downstairs when I was getting some clothes ready for the kids for the next day and asked me, "Mom, did you remember to change the clocks back or is that the old time?" I paused for a moment and confessed, "Hey, I know how much you love your sleep so I'll let you in on my little secret! I haven't changed the clocks back yet and I'm not going to either until after everyone is asleep! That way I can hopefully get everyone to sleep on time tonight, or at least close to it!" She just grinned and said, "Okay! I won't say anything!!!"
Well, that night it worked so well, the next evening, I had Olivia quickly change the clocks forward again when all the other kids were busy elsewhere in the house and we both just cackled as I was chasing kids to bed again that night, busy telling them, "Hurry up!!! It's getting sooo late, it's way past your bedtime, get going!!!!" I told Olivia not to ever tell the other kids because, let me tell you, I'm not above resorting to that tactic as needed in the future!!!! :)

Friday, November 9, 2007


I'm being held hostage by my 3 y.o.!!! Every time I try to get in some computer time, my 3 y.o. sniffs me out hiding away in my room. As soon as she sees me on the computer, she starts the chant, "Put Clifford on! Put Clifford on! Put Clifford on! Put Clifford on! Click it off! Click it off! Click it off! (my blog or email or the news) Put Clifford on (as the pitch of her voice grows alarmingly higher)!" I liken it to (I know this term is politically incorrect, but...) Chinese Water Torture. She eventually wears me down until I relent, put her favorite Clifford Musical Memory game on, and try to use it as an electronic babysitter, attempting to get some cleaning done! As I sneak off down the hallway, I hear the, "Mom! Come help me! Mooommmm! Come help me! Mooooooooommmm!!! Cooomme help me!" mantra. Soon she is crying and screaming in the bedroom for as long as it takes for me to come back and either help her or "break" the computer (shut it off) or she falls asleep. Between my baby crying and requiring to be held a lot and my 3 y.o. never letting me on the computer without harassment, I feel like I get held hostage from the outside world! Ooops! I think I hear her coming down the hallway now! *breaking out in a cold sweat*

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Here's my little dolly.....and Olivia's!

Can you tell which is the real baby? LOL! I think that Isabella's gotten so big but then when we took this picture, I realize that she's now about the size, maybe a little bigger, than my other babies have been at birth! Yesterday, by the way, was her ultrasound due my dates, she would have been due November 9th. Seems like a lifetime has passed since she was born! I think I've gathered a few gray hairs since then too! :) It's actually been going pretty well but the hardest thing is the amount of time that goes into caring for her and the others now pretty much puts me in debt for time! I truly don't feel like I even get all the basics attended to before my day is done! It's mostly because she is very much a lap baby! My husband has been travelling a lot now again too so that doesn't help. When he's home, the other kids then at least have another adult to harass so then at least evenings and weekends are equal opportunity for both of us; equal opportunity for child-induced harassment and equal opportunity for ditch time (just ditching to the laundry room or garage...nowhere exciting...well, I guess I'm at the point I find uninterrupted time in the laundry room exciting!!!!).

Friday, November 2, 2007

Idle Hands...

Apparently my 6- and 8-yr-old just had nothing better to do than tie their 3-yr-old sister to the swingset! The other day, I was sitting at the dining room table sipping my mid-afternoon coffee and reading the day-old paper when I remembered that my 3-yr-old was outside playing with my oh-so-reliable-and-perfectly-capable older daughters watching over her. I was half-reading the paper and half-conversing with a couple of my daughters when it suddenly registered that the couple of daughters that I was conversing with were the oh-so-reliable-and-perfectly-capable girls I had entrusted the care of my 3-yr-old to! They are 11 and 9. I asked, "Where is Kaisa? Is she still outside?" They said, "Yes.." I asked, "Why didn't you take her in like I had asked you to do when you come in?" One of them said, "Oh, Sofia said she would watch her!" Sofi is pretty responsible with her little sister but she is just a little unpredictable! I opened the patio door and looked into the back yard and was greeted by the sight of the 6- and 8-yr-old tying the 3-yr-old to the post of the swingset! I yelled out there, "Hey you two! What on earth are you doing?" To which Kaisa replied, "They're tyin' me up!" To which I asked, "What would possess you to do that?" Sofia simply explained, "Kaisa told us to tie her up!" Oh, okay! That makes it perfectly reasonable..a 3-yr-old requested it! I told her, "No, don't listen to her about that kind stuff! I want you to untie her right away so she doesn't get forgotten there!" Sofia said, "We won't forget her! I promise!!!" Uuuh-huh! Heard that before! Good thing I have this many children! Not a chance I'll believe them! That would be an almost guarantee they'll forget her...*visions of Child Protection Service workers enter my head. I could just see it...hours later, as dusk has set in, someone would suddenly say, "Hey, where is Kaisa?" Then it would hit like a thunder-clap.."Sof-i-a!!! Did you remember to untie Kaisa from the swingset post?" ..and the so familiar reply, "Uuummmm....I forgot!" Then as we all run out to the backyard, swarms of Child Protection Service workers are also descending upon our backyard. Kaisa, dressed only in a T-shirt, fleece pants (at least they're fleece! Fleece is warm!) and bare feet is slumped, semi-conscious and hypothermic. I count the CPS workers...1-2-3-4-5---6!!! One for each of my children! They're taking my babies away!!! As they drag the kids away, Sofia is busy telling me, "Mom, I time I tie her up, I won't forget!!!"* This all plays itself out in my mind in a matter of seconds. I just said, "Yes, Sofi! You won't forget her tied up there because you will be untying her right now!" I must have had that And I Mean It look on my face because, without further argument, she went from winding the rope in one direction back to winding the rope back in the direction it had come from! As I sat back down to continue my sipping and reading, I thought, "I should be taking a picture of this!" The one functioning brain cell I have did a quick spasm, a flop, and nearly fizzled out! I decided that I better just save the energy for something else then!

Our Halloween

We've never celebrated Halloween with our kids...we just skip out and spend the evening at Chuck E. Cheese...along with at least one hundred other children that, we've noticed, have made it their yearly tradition as well. Fun to see these little kids that remain nameless to us grow up over the years! We look each year to see if we see a variety of the kids we've seen each year, including the cute little twins that dressed up as adorable little princesses the first year we saw them. They've been there every year, getting bigger each time, just like our kids are doing. This year, however, my husband is gone to England on a business trip and our baby is only 5-wks-old so we decided instead to celebrate half of our children's birthdays that night instead. We had missed parties for 3 of our girls due to the untimely early birth of our little baby girl (although of course we're just thrilled that she did come when she did!). We decided to have the party from 4-6pm, then kids that are going trick-or-treating could leave early enough to get ready (we planned it this way that only kids from nearby were invited to make it easy enough for all of us...and each of the girls were only allowed 2 friends..the one with a bday in May got to invite a friend so she wouldn't steal her sisters' friends, cause she tends to do that on occasion). Then the few that were left that don't trick-or-treating stayed and partied on with us. THe highlight of the evening? My kids and the remaining party guests got to hand out candy to the trick-or-treaters and they were just THRILLED!!! It was better than trick-or-treatering, in their opinion!!! I think it was even better than the birthday party, as a matter of fact! Definitely a birthday they will remember. I got a picture of the first trick-or-treater at our door but he is barely visible because there were so many little helpers just waiting to drop a treat into his bucket!!!
On a side note: After uploading the picture, I noticed that most of the little "helpers" were outside on the front step, surrounding poor little trick-or-treater (or "Halloweener", which sounded more like, "hollow-weiner" to my sister and me) in their excitement to see him!