Wednesday, May 31, 2006


C got ahold of my camera yesterday afternoon, and took a few photos all by himself:

part of mommy

got a little too close to IJ's sleeping face

IJ's legs and his baba

there's mommy on the computer and IJ taking a nap

oops, I missed daddy's head

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Yesterday it got up to about 90 degrees up here in the U.P., so I figured the boys and I would spend our Memorial Day at the beach. After meeting up with R for lunch (he had to work yesterday), we headed on down to Lake Superior.

C and IJ both ran for the water, but at this time of the year, Lake Superior is still pretty cold (actually, the water doesn't get that much warmer even later in summer-it's cooooold). C didn't seem to mind, but as soon as the water touched IJ's feet, he burst into tears and ran away crying. He stayed away from the water after that. C kept running in and out of the water, splashing around, but never went in higher than thigh level. He did sit on the beach and let the waves splash up underneath him, though. Both boys had a good time digging in the sand, building little castles, and then destroying them by stomping! ("Here comes IJ the Destroyer!") C even played with an 8 year old boy; the boy would build a castle complete with a flag, and then he would let C stomp on it. He was a pretty nice little boy. :)

After we finished at the beach and I got C and IJ dressed, I let them play at the playground up the hill from the beach for a few minutes before leaving for home. There is a bathroom there, and I asked C at least three times if he had to go potty. "No," he kept telling me. I shouldn't have believed him. I went to the water fountain to fill up their cups for the drive home. As I was filling a cup I turned my head to see C with his pants around his ankles, shooting a stream into the grass! And the best part? He did it right in front of a picnic table full of people eating. Lovely. I was expecting this to happen one day, though. At least it wasn't as bad as what his daddy did when he was C's age. His parents love to tell the story of how he dropped his pants in the middle of a hiking trail and pooped. :) Yeah. Pee I can handle. I'm not quite so sure about poop...

Saturday, May 27, 2006


Thursday morning was C’s preschool screening day for Head Start. Our appointment was at 8:30 in the morning, and I was really worried about it. For one thing, he had a hard time falling asleep the night before, so he wasn’t going to get as much sleep as he normally does. He also has a cold. I was worried this would make him uncooperative during his screening, making them think that he needed help or something, when he’s really very smart (well, I’m biased there, but he does know all the basic colors, he can count to 20, he knows almost all the letters, and he can sing the ABC’s--and a bunch of other songs.) I’m a big worrier in general, so I was pretty stressed.

I guess that I worried too much about it, though. I woke him up with “It’s time to go visit your preschool”, and he sprang right out of bed. No tears or anything, so the sleep thing wasn’t a biggie. C was really excited to be going for a visit; he’s been asking to go to preschool for a while, so I know he’s ready. He had some breakfast and some cold medicine and we were on our way.

We walked into the Head Start building where there were a bunch of other parents and 3 and 4 year olds that had the same screening time as us. I don’t know why, but I had figured that the screenings were individual appointments, so I was a little surprised. C got a nametag, and R and I got a big stack of forms to fill out, which included what I like to call The Form From Hell, in which I had to fill out just about every single little thing about C. When I wasn’t paying attention, R filled out all the easy forms and left me the two hard ones (one being The Form From Hell). Not fair. One of the preschool ladies came and asked C if he wanted to come “play”, which was code for going and taking care of his screening. They would be testing his motor skills, vision, hearing, and if he knows colors and whatever. C looked up at the lady, took her hand, and went right off with her. He didn’t even look back. Nope, the sleep and the cold weren’t a problem. As I was watching him walk off with the lady, I had one of those “motherly moments” and I had to blink back the tears. If you’re a mom, you know what I’m talking about, those times when it hits you that your baby is growing up, slowing making his way toward independence. One part of you wants it that way, while another part wants him to stay a loving little snuggling baby forever. I didn’t think about it for too long, though, since I had that lovely Form From Hell sitting blank in front of me. I don’t even want to see what I’ll be like on the actual first day of preschool…oh boy.

While C was doing his screenings, we had our meeting with the “Family Services” people, to give them the forms and our financial information. With Head Start, if you fall into a certain financial area you get preschool paid for. I had figured that we would be right in that financial area, so we hadn’t really looked at other preschools. But it turns out that we are only a couple of hundred dollars over this, and we were told that because of this we would probably be put on a waiting list. My first thought was, I’m filling out all these forms and doing the screening and telling C that this will be his preschool and now you want to tell me that he might not be able to come here now? We then found out that C did really well in the screening, which you would think would be a good thing. But, no, it just puts us on the waiting list more since they take the kids with the lower scores first. They told us that for the four year olds the financial area his higher since it’s their preparation for kindergarten program, so we would get into that. But I don’t really want to wait until he’s four, because I feel that he’s ready for preschool now. They also said that they do most of their placements in May, but sometimes it is August before some people know they are in. August? I don’t really think we could wait around that long to see if he gets in. We know that if we don’t hear anything from Head Start by the end of the month, we’re going to look at other preschools.

R and I were discussing it, and now we wonder if Head Start is even where we want C to be. It seems to us that it’s a place for kids that need a lot of help. We may not have a whole bunch of extra money, but C can already do a lot of the stuff that they are going to be helping these other kids to learn. I know that preschool is mostly for school readiness and they learn through playing, but I’d like him to be able to learn some stuff that he doesn’t already know. So I guess we might be paying for preschool next year after all. I don’t know…

As we were leaving, C turned towards the building and yelled “Bye bye my school!” If C ends up not going to Head Start, how am I going to convince him that the new place is his school, and not the Head Start building? I don’t know…

I didn’t think this whole preschool thing was going to be this hard for us. :(

Wednesday, May 24, 2006


Nana recently taught C a song that goes like this (nana, let me know if I got all these words right):

How dry I am
How wet I'll be
If I don't find
The bathroom key
It's too late now
It's on the floor
My playtex pants
Won't hold no more.

C can sing it all by himself, word for word, and then they both giggle and giggle. Yep, I gotta go kick nana's butt. :)

And by the way, tomorrow is C's preschool screening. I'm freaking out already... :) I'll let you all know how it goes...


The other day I decided to get crafty with the boys. We used just about every single art supply we have: scissors, construction paper, glitter glue pens, stickers, glue, paint with paint brushes and the Squeeze n' Brushes (try those out!). It was messy, but fun! (Although not as messy as when I told R to help C and IJ paint and he let them paint their own bodies. That was messy. I made him give them a bath though. :)

C's picture (their names were on there so I blurred them out)

IJ's picture

C's paintings (he likes mixing it all to make brown, and making holes in the picture :)

IJ's paintings

Monday, May 22, 2006


Thursday night R and I took the kids to a special outing at the Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum hosted by a local playgroup. This playgroup isn’t the one I take the boys to, but another one that’s in our local area. They send their calendar of events over to our playgroup all the time, since they do a lot of special stuff (outings and special story times, etc.).

C and IJ had a great time of course, since the Children’s Museum is a really neat place (if you live in the U.P., go and visit!), but the whole “special outing” wasn’t really what I expected. I had expected them to do something special with all the kids, maybe some activity where all the kids would do something together. One of the reasons I signed up to go was because I was looking forward to meeting other families with kids the same age as mine that live in my area--more friends for the kids, and maybe for mommy and daddy, too. But they just had all the kids running around playing on their own; no group activities. So C and IJ pretty much just played with each other and not so much with the other kids. It was basically just like any other time we’ve gone to the Museum only we got in for free. And we were supposed to get pizza and pop, but we didn’t end up getting any. The excuse was that because R and I didn’t put on our nametags, they didn’t think we were a part of their group. Yeah, both of us were just chasing around and holding two kids with nametags for the heck of it. And there wasn’t that many other people there…but whatever. The boys had a wonderful time, and we ended up getting Pizza Hut afterwards…:)

I have two favorite moments from the night, though. One was with IJ and a snake. IJ and I were at the snake aquarium, and I pointed out one of the snakes to him. He was very excited about the snake, and kept yelling, “Snake! Snake!”. A little red haired girl about his age came up to look at the snake, too, and he got all excited trying to show her the snake. “Look! Snake! Look!” She just sort of looked at him like “why are you yelling at me?” He then put his face right up to the glass where the snake was sitting. The snake of course picked that moment to try to slither up the side of the glass. IJ jumped, scurried back to my lap, and huddled up right next to me with a wide-eyed look on his face. He kept whispering “Ohhh, snaaaaaake. Ohhh, snaaaaaake.”, but he still wanted to watch that snake. It was sooooo cute.

My other favorite moment involved a radio that you could talk into and would broadcast your voice. R showed the boys how to talk into it, and C took a turn. But the only thing he would say into it was “hedge”. Why hedge I have no idea. “Hedge hedge heeeedge!” IJ took a turn, and he stuck his mouth right on the microphone. What comes out of his mouth? “Ho! Ho! Hooooooo!!” Yep, hedge and ho. Those are my boys. :D

Sunday, May 21, 2006


...your son telling you he has to pee while you're driving down the road, so you pull over so he can pee in the grass. You get him out, pull down his pants, and...he doesn't go. And a car honks at you. Great.

Yep. That's potty training.

Friday, May 19, 2006


Sasha's identification tag finally came in the mail today. And I mean finally. I thought that it maybe got lost in the mail, and I was considering sending in another order form (and another 8 bucks). But now it's finally here, yippee! :) It's a silver bone with her name, address and phone number on it. And now she jingles when she walks like Cheyenne does. ;D

Sasha showing off her new silver tag

Smile for the camera! Sasha and Cheyenne

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


I had a pretty nice Mother’s Day weekend. I actually got my first present on Saturday. A few weeks before R and I had been talking about Mother’s Day gifts, and I told him I really didn’t need stuff. I would be very happy with him taking the kids out for a day so I could have a nice quiet day at home on my own. Usually it’s all of us going out together or just me taking the kids; R doesn’t take both kids out that often so that would really be a nice gift for me.

I didn’t have any idea that he was going to take the kids on Saturday, though. C and IJ ate breakfast and then R asked C if he wanted to go for a ride. I figured he was probably going to take C down to the hardware store to pick something up. But then R came back in the room and asked IJ if he wanted to go for a ride, too. I thought, okay, so he’s going to take them both to the hardware store. I was playing away on the computer, so I wasn’t really paying much attention. They left and I went to take the dogs out. Sitting at the bottom of the stairs next to the door was the diaper bag filled up with pull-ups for both kids and an extra pair of pants for C. I thought, uh-oh, if he’s taking them farther than just in town he’s going to be in trouble, since C was wearing underwear and he didn’t have anything extra with him (C is mostly potty trained but still has problems with wetting his pants, so he usually wears pull-ups when we go out). I called R and asked him if he meant to take that diaper bag, and where they were going. He said, “I’m giving you your day.” Ooooh, okay. But I was still worried about C wetting his pants and that he only had one extra pull-up for IJ with him. R just kept saying, “I can handle it!” Okay, I thought, we’ll just see… and I went about enjoying my kid-less day (with a nice loooooong shower…heavenly!! ;) ).

But I was wrong. They got back Saturday evening (in time for the NASCAR race that night of course) and C was still wearing the same pants and underwear, IJ was napping happily (without his bottle), and both kids had been good for him. And the best part: R finally got C to pee standing up! (Next up: working on aiming…) Damn, if I had taken the boys out and forgotten the diaper bag, C would have peed his pants, IJ would have pooped in his, and they both would have asked me for snacks and bottles (IJ) that I didn’t have with me. I’m still wondering how in the hell he managed that. But I’m thinking, if daddy’s that good, he needs to take the boys out more often…

On Sunday morning after breakfast R called both boys into the other room, and a few minutes later they came running in with my Mother’s Day gifts. They both had huge smiles on their faces as they came running towards me; IJ with his arms wrapped around a big frog figurine, C with a big lilac scented candle and waving a card yelling, “Mommy! I’ve got a letter for you!” It was so adorable, just watching them was a gift in itself. They handed me the gifts (yay! More frogs-I collect frogs, and lilacs are my fave flower, I love that smell!), and then I opened up The Most Adorable Card Ever (thank you for helping C pick that one out, R!):

C told me that the inside says: “I love you, mommy.” Awwww. :)

Auntie came over later and gave me a bunch more candles (you can never have too many candles) and a nice card. I was sure to rub my butt on her in appreciation. :D (Don’t ask, we’re strange.)

R grilled up some steaks for everybody that night, which were soooooooo delicious. We all happily engorged ourselves. ;) So all in all, it was a good weekend.

My Mother's Day Booty:

Monday, May 15, 2006


...C singing the ABC's with tape all over his face. (I was gonna write about Mother's Day but then I got all distracted with this so I'll do it later. :) ) He gets cut off before he can sing "next time won't you sing with me" because the camera ran out of space. :(

Does anyone know why the picture and the sound don't match up? This is my first time playing with posting videos. :)

Sunday, May 14, 2006


Hope all you mommies out there are having a great day! These are some "flowers" C and IJ made for me at playgroup on Tuesday (made from tracing their hands). More on my Mother's Day weekend later! :)

Saturday, May 13, 2006


Well, it's official. Dale Jarrett will be driving for Toyota with Michael Waltrip next year until 2008.

I don't know what to think of this. I like to think that we're Ford people here, so it will be really weird to root for a Toyota. And Jarrett's sponsor, UPS, may or may not follow him. I've only been a NASCAR fan since about 2001, and Jarrett's always been in the #88 UPS Ford. All this change is just going to be really weird for me...

On the other hand, I do really like Mikey. So him and Jarrett being teammates will be kinda nifty.

But still. Toyota?

And don't even get me started on DJ retiring in 2008...

Friday, May 12, 2006


My brother, Corporal J (he's in the marines), called me this morning. He's in Darlington, SC for the NASCAR races this weekend. And do you know what he was doing? He was riding around the track in a Viper!!

Yep, he sucks.

Then he calls me later to tell me to be sure to watch Trackside (a NASCAR show on the Speed Channel) cause he got a spot in the front row. Which means he'll be on tv.

Yep, he really sucks.

Oh well, I get my revenge next month because we're finally going to the Michigan race on the 18th. Although we just get to go to the Sunday race. My brother with his military discount gets to do all kinds of cool stuff (both races, pits, meeting drivers, etc.)...

Yep. He still sucks. :)

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


…because I had to make a trip to the emergency room Saturday night. My crazy little boy decided to climb up on the arm of nana’s bench and then jump down into the armchair next to it. Only he didn’t land well and came up screaming and holding up his left arm. I held him for a while thinking that maybe he just bumped it, but when I tried to get him to use the arm, he would scream every time I touched it. So nana and I threw on some shoes to take IJ to the hospital. Of course he had to make his flying leap right before bedtime, and nana and I weren’t really thinking about our attire, so we ended up going right in our styling high-water leg pajamas. And nana wasn’t wearing a bra. We looked great. ;)

We were in the emergency room FOREVER. I don’t know what it is about our hospital, but they are so slow. Every time I’ve been there it’s always for hours. When IJ had his nursemaid’s elbow in Green Bay, we were in and out of the ER in about 45 minutes. And it was the exact same stuff that we did Saturday night: register, doctor consultation, x-rays, doctor’s findings, at-home instructions. Except Saturday night we were in the ER for two and a half hours. And it was well past IJ’s bedtime, and he was in pain. And that ER was not that busy! I’m still really annoyed about it. They would take so long in between the times they came into the room that IJ would fall asleep, but as soon as he fell asleep that’s when someone would come in and want to do this or that to him again. IJ did a lot of screaming at the top of his lungs. :(

Their findings weren’t that great either. The doctor thought it might be nursemaid’s elbow again, so he did the arm manipulation, and said he thought he felt a pop. He wasn’t sure, so he ordered x-rays. We waited a long time for the results of the x-rays. But before anyone even told us the results and nurse guy came in and started putting a sling on IJ’s arm, and showing us how to do it and all this and that. Um, great, but what’s wrong with his arm? So he says “Hold on, I’ll get your at home instructions.” Okay. Then the doctor comes back in. He says that it might be a strain and that he didn’t see anything on the x-ray, but that he could possibly still have a fracture, and that the radiologists would look at the x-rays the next day. He told us to sling IJ’s arm for a couple of days and give him Tylenol, but that if he wasn’t using his arm on Monday to make an appointment with our doctor. Uh huh. That was a really definitive answer.

Well, I never heard anything from those radiologists, but IJ is using his arm again. We kept it in the sling Sunday and Monday (well except for a couple of hours Sunday night, and then Sasha managed to chew a big hole in it), and took it off of him last night. At first he didn’t want to put weight on the arm, but now he’s using it a bunch and doesn’t seem to be in any pain. So I’m sure he probably doesn’t have a fracture. But I still made him a doctor’s appointment for tomorrow; I just want to be sure his arm is healing the way it is supposed to and there’s not anything else hidden going on.

But one thing is for sure: no more super IJ jumping!!
*UPDATE* I took IJ to the doctor today and she said that he's moving his arm in all the ways he is supposed to, and he's not in any pain. So whatever it was, it seems to be healed now. He's fine! :)


Thursday night the Shrine Circus was in town so R and I took the boys out to see it. We went to the 7:30 showing, and I was afraid we wouldn’t get in at first since the line was LONG. It snaked around from the entrance to the side of the building and all the way to the grass next to the parking lot. We still needed to buy our tickets, and I was thinking, “If this is the ticket line…”. But it turns out that the early showing was running late, and they were still waiting for people to leave the arena. Once the circus started letting people in, the line moved really fast and we had no problem getting in. Which was good, because what would you tell your kid when you’ve been getting them excited all day for the circus and you get there and it’s sold out?

I think the boys had a good time. Well I know IJ did; he was clapping and saying “Yay!” and was watching everything very intently (this is actually the second time he‘s been to this circus, but he slept through it last year). C was cranky at first because he wanted this and that; we were sitting where he could see all the toys, and I think he was afraid that if he didn’t get one right away they would all disappear or something. He kept one eye on the action and one eye on those toys the whole time. After a bit (and after some popcorn) he was happier and more excited.

There was one thing that got both the boys’ attention, though, and C said it was his favorite part. No, it wasn’t the elephants, the tight rope walkers, the fire jugglers, the performing dogs, or even the motorcyclists who drove around in the big metal sphere. It was Spongebob. The circus did an act where they picked four people from the audience to come down into the ring. They did “American Idol”, and had the audience members sing karaoke to some funny songs (they told one boy he was getting a rap song, but instead it was YMCA, stuff like that). They got down to the last little girl, and told her she was getting a song everyone would know. Then that familiar theme song started to play, and I saw both boys perk their heads up right away. Then none other than Spongebob himself comes walking out behind the little girl and starts to dance as she sings. C gets this huge grin on his face, and IJ starts pointing and jumping in my lap, “Bob-bob! Bob-bob!”, looking back at me every two seconds with a “holy crap I can’t believe this” look on his face. Both boys were so thrilled. R and I couldn’t help but smile, even though Spongebob is not really what you bring your kids to the circus for. ;) Finally Spongebob said goodbye but would be back during the intermission. There was a couple of more acts until the intermission, but IJ could’ve cared less about those. He kept turning to me with his hands in the air, questioning, “Where’s Bob-bob? Where’s Bob-bob?”

We went down to get a little closer to “Bob-bob” during intermission (we could’ve gotten a picture with him but circus stuff has to be so expensive…), and we visited that toy booth that C thought was going to disappear and got both boys a flashing light saber. Which IJ kept trying to hit people with. :) Oh, well, it was a good night even though we could’ve seen Spongebob at home… :)

Friday, May 05, 2006


Here’s a rundown of all the stuff that’s been going on around here the past week. I know, it’s all old news now, I really need to catch up on my blogging. But I’ve been working hard on trying to get this site the way I want it to look. (It’s almost there!) And now I’m ready to blog here! :)

First off and most important, R got a promotion at Menards. He’s now an assistant manager. It’s more of a title right now really because his pay is staying the same, but he will get some additional bonuses and he has some different responsibilities now. R wasn’t sure that he wanted the management responsibilities, but I’m glad that he decided to go for it. I know that he’ll do a great job. :)

Last Friday Sasha had another vet appointment. She got a couple more puppy shots, and doesn’t need any more until she’s a year old. She’s up to 38 lbs. (the same as C!) And it was the last time I had to bring in her poop (and this time I didn’t forget it in the car! ;P ) since the roundworm pill worked. I’m still not sure if her bladder issues are cured or not, as she was still on her antibiotics at her appointment. Sasha’s off of them now, but I have to wait to bring her pee in to be tested until we can afford it. :( She’s been off the antibiotics for a couple of days now, and she seems to be okay, so hopefully the infection is gone. She’s been a pretty expensive puppy lately. But at least she has a pretty new orange rabies tag for her collar! :)

Last but not least, at the Health and Safety Fair we found out about a craft day that was to be held at our mall, since April is considered “the month of the small child” or something like that. So last Saturday we headed out for the mall, and it was pretty neat. Down the center of the mall there were all these craft tables set up from different organizations. And it was apparently a fish theme since all the crafts had some kind of fish involved: the boys ended up making fish mosaics, paper bag fish, whales with party blowers, and C colored a whale picture. C didn’t want to do any of the crafts at first, because he saw the quarter rides (correction: 75 cent rides!! When the hell did they get so expensive?) and wanted to do those first. I told him we would ride one at the end before we left since everything else wasn’t going to be there that long. He was mad. He pouted and said no to everything. Until he saw the water table. C stood and looked at it for a while, but I could tell he still wanted to be mad. Finally I asked if he wanted to do it and he reluctantly said yes. Two seconds playing in the water and he forgot all about those rides. He loves the water. When I finally pulled him away from the water table with a “Let’s let some other kids have a turn,” he was much more interested in what each table had. And he even got his ride at the end (except C and IJ had to share one -- 75 cents!!).

C and IJ at the water table and making their fish mosaics.


Auntie sent me this forward a few days ago in my e-mail that i thought was really funny, and oh so true...

Part 1 - Jeff Foxworthy's view of Michigan :
If you consider it a sport to gather your food by drilling through 18 inches of ice and sitting there all day hoping that the food will swim by, you might live in Michigan . (I don't know if I would consider it a sport, but I've done it.)

If you're proud that your region makes the national news 96 nights each year because Pellston is the coldest spot in the nation, you might live in Michigan. (I don't know about this Pellston thing since they are downstate and I would think up here would be a hell of a lot colder...)

If your local Dairy Queen is closed from November through March, you might live in Michigan .

If you instinctively walk like a penguin for five months out of the year, you might live in Michigan .

If someone in a store offers you assistance, and they don't work there, you might live in Michigan .

If your dad's suntan stops at a line curving around the middle of his forehead, you might live in Michigan .

If you have worn shorts and a coat at the same time, you might live in Michigan . (I see people doing this all the time!)

If your town has an equal number of bars and churches, you might live in Michigan . (yep...)

If you have had a lengthy telephone conversation with someone who dialed a wrong number, you might live in Michigan .

Part 2 - You know you're a true MICHIGANIAN when.............
1. "Vacation" means going up north on I-75.
2. You measure distance in hours.
3. You know several people who have hit a deer more than once.
4. You often switch from "heat" to "A/C" in the same day. (Yes, we do...)
5. You can drive 65 mph through 2 feet of snow during a raging blizzard, without flinching. (Hell yeah! I hate hearing about cities that totally shut down after 2 in. of snow. That is nothing!)
6. You see people wearing camouflage at social events (including weddings).
7. You install security lights on your house and garage and leave both unlocked.
8. You carry jumper cables in your car and your girlfriend knows how to use them.
9. You design your kid's Halloween costume to fit over a snowsuit. (That is a requirement every year...)
10. Driving is better in the winter because the potholes are filled with snow.
11. You know all 4 seasons: almost winter, winter, still winter and road construction.
12. You can identify a southern or eastern accent.
13. Your idea of creative landscaping is a statue of a deer next to your blue spruce. (Yes, lots of people put deer statues in their yards around here. There's not one in my yard though.)
14. You were unaware that there is a legal drinking age.
15. Down South to you means Ohio
16. A brat is something you eat. (And they are delicious grilled...)
17. Your neighbor throws a party to celebrate his new pole barn.
18. You go out to a fish fry every Friday.
19. Your 4th of July picnic was moved indoors due to frost.
20. You have more miles on your snow blower than your car.
21. You find 0 degrees "a little chilly." (Not me though, I really hate the cold.)
22. You drink pop and bake with soda. (R moved up here in high school and he calls pop soda. It's weird to me...)
23. Your doctor tells you to drink Vernors and you know it's not medicine.
24. You know what a Yooper is. (If you live in the U.P. you do...)
25. You think owning a Honda is Un American.
26. You know that UP is a place, not a direction.
27. You know it's possible to live in a thumb.
28. You understand that when visiting Detroit, the best thing to wear is a Kevlar vest. (:D)