Thursday, November 24, 2011

i am thankful

  • for children's ibuprofen. and humidifiers. because i was actually wondering if bennett might stop breathing last night. and if his fever could possibly get any higher. but it was really sweet when this precious little sickling asked me if i was cold and tried to cover me up with his quilt as we laid on his floor at 1 am.
  • creamer. because coffee wouldn't be the same without it. and yes, i drink coffee. sometimes its even decaf.
  • that mason no longer wants me in the bathroom with him. he still wants pee-pee treats but he trusts me to take his word for it. this is very liberating and the real reason you wait until your child is 3+ before potty training. potty training: successful!
  • for wonderful family. and even though we aren't with any of you today because, lets face it, as much as i love you all, i love my proximity to the hospital, emergency medical procedures and epidurals a little more right now. but each of you are missed.
  • that maternity pants and the day o' gluttony coincide this year.
  • that i don't actually have to have green bean casserole on my menu this year. maybe its the name, maybe its the consistency of it, but its not my favorite. it is of course a favorite to my loved ones. even if they do drop it all on the floor. (yep, chad, this will haunt you forever. i'll make sure of it.)
  • a driven, motivated first born child who is insistent upon doing school work on thanksgiving. if only she could teach her brother to read, we'll be all set around here.
and of course a multitude of many, many obvious things, like my 3 perfect children and one on the way who will sleep through the night when we come home from the hospital and one day find the cure for cancer, my husband who pretty much rocks my world, my awesome savior Jesus Christ, this great country and our military, and a million other things i could list but i'd just sound like a copycat.

so, happy thanksgiving! and you know what the day after thanksgiving is? decorating for my favorite holiday... christmas! cozy christmas lights, candles, music, and the yummy baking calories that don't count for the entire month. love it!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

pee-pee treats

every weekend or prolonged period of time anthony is home, mason ends up with chonies on. which of course is extremely helpful to me and if he could, anthony would take over all undesirable duties i face like potty-training, childbirth, and teaching art. he loves me like that.

but come monday, mason is typically back in a diaper. i just haven't had it in me to focus on potty training while i'm busy homeschooling my other 2 children and trying to do everything i can to not get up and run to the bathroom every 25 seconds.

but let's face it. the clock is ticking. there is a newborn coming and mason will one day get a drivers license and go off to college and i can't avoid potty training forever.

so on my way home from my doctor appointment last week (the one where i was officially given the green light to not be on bedrest (unless of course there is laundry or cooking to be done) and the hopeful possibility of not facing the dreaded c-section (yay!)) i stopped to pick up gummy worms.

when i got home i pulled them out of my purse and announced with great enthusiasm "pee-pee treats!" to which everyone danced around and squealed in excitement. (really, you can trick your kids into being excited about almost anything at this age. it's a correlation between level of expressed exhilaration and amount of sugar at hand)

and here is the real trick in making sure the pee-pee treats work.

enter my brilliance: "ella and bennett, you can get one too, each time mason goes in the toilet!"

potty training on my part? done.

therapy for my older children who will one day look back and say, wow, my mom actually had me potty train my little brother... only just beginning.
(i have no idea what mason is doing here...)

so now mason will be happily playing with his cars on the floor when he'll suddenly stand up and yell, "me pee-pee!" and ella and bennett will jump up from the table, pencils and math worksheets flying and grab him by the hand and race down the hallway and he'll squeal in delight as they open the potty chair lid for him and he'll say, "yay, me pee-pee party!" because, after all, who doesn't want a party in their honor every time they have to empty their bladder?

then he'll sit for a little while and everyone will expectantly watch as pure exuberance breaks across his face and he proclaims, "ME! PEE! PEE! YAAAYYYY! YAH-HOO!" and then he'll glance up at me and ask with an adorable, expectant, proud smile, "me worm treat?" and ella and bennett will jump up and down and tell him how proud they are of him and then they all race to line up in front of the pantry door to receive their reward.

this, people, is the secret to potty training.

it has gone amazingly smooth. my sister asked me if i make them wipe him. i laughed and said of course not. then i got to thinking... maybe for 2 worm treats?

kidding, kidding...

we ran out of worm treats yesterday. i figured, hey, we have the hang of it now, should it really matter anymore? so i told mason when he was getting the last one and that now he can have stickers.

this made logical sense to me. but i, of course, don't have the mind of a 3 year old.

so an hour later he jumps up, screams "me pee-pee!" and runs to the bathroom and i'm helping him get ready but before he'll go he looks at me very serious and says, "worm treat?" and i remind him there aren't any left but he can pick out whatever sticker he wants.

he just stares at me, pulls back up his chonies and says, "me no pee-pee." and just like that he went on a pee-pee strike for the next couple of hours.

i then caved and started giving him chocolate chips. and right behind him are ella and bennett with their hands out. the family all sticks together over here. i'm just encouraging sibling unity when i keep handing out sugar.

you know, this is why we homeschool after all. while other kids are at recess or music class or conjugating spanish verbs at the public school, my kids get to watch their brother pee in a plastic chair for sugar.

but for sure, i'm gonna pick up some more this week and when i get home i'm going to announce with gusto, "laundry/mopping/cooking/sweeping treats!"

and then i'm going to show them the cleaning supplies.

hey, i'm onto something here.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

the bedrest sentence

bedrest has been official for the past month and will last for the rest of my life. or the rest of my pregnancy. both seem equally as long.

but i'm sure i'll survive.

with minimal complaining.

or not.

its that darn placenta causing problems and the goal is to keep this baby in for as long as possible. but i'm now 33 weeks so that's the good news.

bedrest is an interesting predicament when it is also an impossibility. i mean, i still have 3 kids who surround me every waking moment of the day.

so... a few observations/updates on bedrest:

1. how providential that my parents long-planned relaxing beach vacation could coincide so conveniently with my bedrest. so now, instead of lounging around on the beach reading and drinking tequila shots, they get to come dust my house, do my grocery shopping and shuttle my kids to swim lessons. lucky them.

2. i am still working on how to graciously say thank you. for instance, when my sweet friends plan meals for me and send out emails to my other dear friends so my family can be blessed and provided for, they may not understand that, "what!?! i'm gonna kill you!" actually means "thank you so much for your thoughtfulness." seriously, i have pretty amazing friends.

3. sometimes, my kids understand the meaning of bedrest. ella and bennett pretty much always get it, even if they are really sad that i won't take them to get a pumpkin. mason gets this sometimes. for instance, when he asks to be picked up and i say that i can't and he responds with a curious stare and a "oh, hurt you baby?" he seems to grasp the concept. however, when the bathroom is out of handsoap and he insists upon washing his hands RIGHT NOW in only this bathroom, no amount of yelling "i'm not getting up" down the hallway will prevent "need more heese (please). need more heese. need more heese." repeat 1 million times. that kid is tenacious and determined. if only he could focus his efforts at potty training himself.

4. potty training + bedrest = notgonnahappen

5. homeschooling 2 kids prevents me from having free time and actually enjoying bedrest by watching mindless tv, eating chocolate and sitting around with my feet up. instead i sit at the kitchen table and attempt to figure out history timelines and science experiments. oh, and art projects. (cringe)

6. medication to prevent contractions is not without its side effects. for instance: "insomnia" and "frequent urination." gee, thanks. like i needed any help with that.

7. conveniences of bedrest: what... laundry?... vacuuming?... cooking?... exercising?... grocery shopping?... being nice to my kids?... sorry, i'm on bedrest.

i must say, while i hate asking for help and accepting help while i sit around and do nothing, i am forever grateful to my amazing husband who continues to come home every day for lunch and never stops washing dishes and children and cleaning up the house. i was afraid he might be tempted to save himself and run for it, but he loves me and puts up with me. i'm so lucky.

also forever grateful to the lovely friends who brought us meals. i promise i'll still get your dishes back to you. oh, and also all those same friends who check in with me daily/weekly to make sure i haven't gone insane or tied up my children in the closet and also drop off treats on my doorstep like books and magazines and chocolate and donuts and freshly cut lavender. i'm so spoiled.

and of course my parents who sacrificed many days of a lovely vacation to come here and listen to me yell at my kids from the couch and intervened in order to still provide them with a peaceful childhood.
(movie night at grammy and poppa's condo... where the sugar flows and the fun never ends)

note: my parents do not drink tequila shots. at least... not that i know of?