Sunday, June 29, 2008

I think I saw a puddy tat! I did! I did!

For a little while now, we've been thinking Ben can say "cat", but weren't sure because a lot of what he babbles fits the situation he's in. "Out!" when he was struggling to get out of his car seat. "I want that!" when reaching for something the other day. But stuff he's not really saying, of course.

But this morning, he looked up, saw Suzie, grinned and yelled "CAT!" Then after we got all excited, he started saying "kitty cat! kitty cat!" over and over. Mike calls the cats "kitties" when talking to Ben, I call them "cats".

So he is now up to three words. "Mama", "Da Da", and "Kitty Cat". Or four, depending how you look at it!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Party

We had 11 kids plus Kaia come to her party. We held it at the same park she and her class used to go to on Fridays. The picnic tables were in the shade, and there was a nice wind, so as long as I stayed there, I didn't get too hot. The kids ran wild for the first hour or so, then sat down for ice cream cakes in little planters. I put crushed oreos on top with gummi worms and bugs. They all seemed to enjoy them, and ran off again after eating. A few of the other women helped me get them all rinsed and ready for planting, then we sat down to open presents. However, in a repeat performance from last year, Kaia took a brief moment to head out to the field to throw up. With the combination of sugar and excitement, she was just undone. Natasha came to the rescue with homeopathics and aromatherapy face spray, and Kaia, feeling much better, commenced the gift-opening. She got some excellent loot, and is currently playing with her fairy garden, occasionally looking over at her bag of other goodies and grinning.
Not sure when exactly this was taken, but here are three of her friends walking with her up the hill. She is holding the Star Wars card Mike and I got for her. When it's opened, it loudly plays the Star Wars theme song.
Ben had a great time watching everyone, but got tired pretty quickly. It was a lot to take in for such a little man!
We planted flowers in the pots after gift opening. Went pretty fast, really. Not the best craft for a party if you're looking to take up time....but the kids who took part seemed to have fun.
Ben crashed in his daddy's arms and slept for a bit. After he woke up and spent some time playing in the grass, and playing a game called "how many times can I get this stick in my mouth and how many times will my parents pull it out?"
The kids all played on the playground equipment for awhile, then slowly trickled home. Overall, I think everyone had a good time.

After we got home, we were all hot and sweaty, so we got into bathing suits and went to the pool. It made all four of us feel much better. Kaia swam over 5 laps lengthwise!! I don't know where she got the energy! We came home after an hour or so, put Ben to bed, and are now just relaxing a bit.

21st Century Girl


Kaia: Where did you find it?
Me: Online.
Kaia: What dot com?

Reading with Uncle Mick

Friday, June 27, 2008

Two Top Teeth

and now, for the close up! He doesn't usually like to show off his top teeth, so I was happy to get a shot of this smile!

Birthday Week

Yesterday was Kaia's 7th birthday. My parents and my brother came up and celebrated with us. It was a really good day. Kaia and her grandparents went swimming at our apartment's pool, and Kaia got tons of gifts. She'll be getting more on Saturday when she has her party with friends, which makes me want to edit her room again. I think that in a week or two when she goes down to spend the weekend with my parents I will edit and reorganize her room.

She got a few more starts to book series - Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, The Boxcar Children, Ramona Quimby. She also got some more books for younger kids, which she still enjoys and can be easier to read.

Tomorrow should be a blast. I have to go get all the supplies -planters, flowers, cake, ice cream, etc. - tonight when Mike gets home. The party is in the afternoon so I'll have plenty of time to prepare...thinking about it, I should maybe get the flowers tomorrow morning....

Will post pictures from today a little later, and several from tomorrow I'm sure. This morning we're off to a park play date with my mom's group.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

In more notaboutme news!!!

She's having a girl!!!!!!

Reality Check

Two things. First, a funny thing my daughter said. Second, how I realized I needed to have it be said to ME.

So yesterday we're in the car on the way home. Ben is fussy because he's tired, and Kaia is grumpy because she had to leave her friend's house.

Kaia: Mom, Ben calms down when I pay attention to him. I think he just wants attention. (said in an exasperated tone)

Me: Okay, well, you could sing him a little song.

Kaia: I don't want to.

Me: Okay, you don't have to entertain him.

Kaia: (after a pause) Mom, can I tell him it's not all about HIM?

So, as I said in my whiny post, it could just be me taking things personally. And after a VERY nice email from the friend in question here is my conclusion.

I am extremely self-absorbed. Not all the time of course, but in situations like this. Because in the email she mentioned all the reasons -and almost all of them I was already aware of -that she has been busy: she's pregnant, has a 5 year old, her husband has been almost living at work (not willingly), she has a big over-seas trip coming up, she's had to plan and go to multiple doctor appointments for her and her family and her pets, and, not mentioned in her email, she has been helping out a neighbor whose back went out.

Yeah. Am I taking things too personally much? sheesh. Sometimes, I really just need to ask my daughter to tell me...

"Mom! It's not all about YOU!"

Monday, June 23, 2008

Student At Large

So since we moved here I've been planning to go back to school in the fall of this year. I hadn't looked at the classes I was planning to take for over a year, so forgot that I had added in a bunch just to take for when I looked at it last week, I realized that if I took out all those, I would be ready to apply for the Ultrasound Tech program at the beginning of 2010, meaning I would start - if accepted - Fall Quarter of 2010!!!

That's only taking 2 classes per quarter, which is awesome, since I need to take night classes until I am in the program. Night classes are either Monday and Wednesday, or Tuesday and Thursday, meaning if I work it right I can be taking a class all four days. I'm starting with only one class though, since it's Summer quarter, meaning less time to do the same amount of work, and to get back into the School Groove.

Of course, I decided this last Friday, and today was the beginning of the quarter - though the class I signed up for doesn't start until tomorrow night. I signed up for Algebra 097, a class I've taken before, but ten years ago, so I don't remember much. Since Math is my weak point, I don't want to take any chances about keeping my GPA high, so I'd rather start fresh and keep up. I only have to take 3 math classes for the program - 097, 098, and 099. I'll write another post later about the other classes I'll be taking, as well as the volunteering I need, and want, to do.

I'm really excited to start, despite the fact it's math. I am confident I'll do fine in the class since it's all just reminders, and Mike is super supportive and excited about me going to school too.

Saturday, June 21, 2008


Picnic at the park

My mom's group had a huge picnic today at the park! It was awesome weather, not cold at all, but not glaring down sun. We had a wonderful time hanging out with other families, and Kaia had a blast running all over the place. Ben likes being out and about, so was perfectly behaved. He spent some time on the grass, which he loves, and also in a baby swing, which he also enjoyed quite a bit.
I asked someone to take a picture of all of us, something you rarely see, since I am usually the one with the camera! I also gave it to Mike so that I could be in some, and so I could spend some time with Kaia.
I used to love the swings, but now they make me sick after a few minutes on them....
I think Ben would have been happy for a lot longer in his swing. At one point I let it slow down, then stop, and he kicked his feet like "hey!! push me!!"
He also had fun swinging with Mike and I. We decided we really want to go to a park or somewhere outside every weekend this summer, weather allowing.
Next month we are going to be in a parade, so the kids decorated the banner with their handprints.

Friday, June 20, 2008

after the coffee

Happy post! We have some fun things planned for this weekend. Tomorrow we're going to a picnic with about 100 people in my mother's group. Then Kaia's friend Ben is coming over for dinner and we're watching him for a couple hours. Sunday we have no definite plans, but it'll be nice to just spend some time together.

I want to go over to the east side of the state for several days to visit Andrea and her family, but I think I need to wait until Ben more used to sleeping in his crib, that way transitioning back to it when we return will be easier.

Then next weekend is Kaia's birthday party on Saturday, and the Strawberry Festival on Sunday! Oh! and before that, on Thursday, her actual birthday, my parents and possibly my brother are coming up!

I attempted to make english muffins today, but messed up on converting the flour from grams to cups, so didn't put in enough. They tasted good though, so I will definitely be trying again. Mike said I have a talent for making things that turn out fabulous. gotta love that man.

Talked to Shane today, and we both agreed our families need to get together more. Then of course we went over our calendars ... "can't do that weekend...can that one..oh, you can't?" but we both decided to make something happen at some point!

Also got to talk to Kathy today. Now that she's working again we don't talk on the phone as often, so it was awesome to hear from her. I miss that woman. She said she will most likely now be coming for Thanksgiving, so we're back to having both her family and Tania's!!! My first big Thanksgiving dinner! Well, not counting the one a couple years ago...that was a bit of a fiasco, so I am having a do-over.

When I am not feeling all sorry for myself, I recognize how lucky I am. I have a wonderful husband, marvelous children, and fabulous friends. Just because I haven't yet made some here doesn't mean I won't. I should have learned by now that the most special things come in their own time and are so worth it when they do. Somewhere out there are some fantastic women who I will someday get to know. Maybe I've met them, or some of them, already. All I can do is go out into this world with a smile on my face and an open heart. and I can do that.

Yes, I WOULD like some cheese with my whine. thank you.

I want to whine. I can't stand whining. My daughter whines and it's one of the only things that makes me want to slap her. I don't, of course, but if I were the sort to slap? Whining would be the reason.

I want to whine about not having any friends. but wait...I do have friends, both elsewhere and here. The elsewhere ones are better friends, simply because I've known them longer. Which is, of course, the only remedy for having better friends here. and yes, I KNOW I've whined about this before. But then I read a blog written by a friend of a friend - who I'd like to get to know better, she's quite nice - talking about what a good friend the mutual friend is (got that?) and I get all mopey and whiny. Because that particular mutual friend I sometimes don't understand. While we are together she is so nice, and seems to genuinely want to be my friend too. But she doesn't call me, and lately hasn't seemed to want to get together, though she says she does. however, disclaimer, she is pregnant, and while I was pregnant, I had a hard time making an effort to be social too. a very hard time, for reasons I don't understand. so she could be like me. or she could just be not wanting to hurt my feelings? or I could be taking all this WAY TOO PERSONALLY like usual?!?! I don't want to talk to her about it, because I don't want to be whiny and all self-centered like I am being now.
She lives about 40 minutes away, which I don't mind driving, but is too far to call her up and reasonably expect to be able to say "hey, come hang out a bit" and I don't want to invite myself over there, we haven't reached that part of friendship yet. I miss that part of living in Pullman, where I could call Andrea and be all "yeah, so I'm coming over, okay? thought I'd hang out at your house all day" and that would be totally fine with her and I would know it was totally fine with her.
I would have to say this is the ONLY THING I am not liking about living here. Mike loves his job, Kaia loves her school, my family is very happy. I love having my husband available in the evenings to be with his family, I love being with my kids and not having to worry about rushing off to work. I enjoy being able to take the time to cook healthy yummy meals for us, and my marriage is joyful.
But I need other wimminfolk! I want to have friends who can bring their kids over and hang out, we can make lunch together and chat about nothing and everything. and I want it now. I know, I KNOW. good friendships don't happen right away, they grow. but one, just one, good friend would be good to have right now. one that lives close by, one that I can call up and go grocery shopping with.

okay, whine over.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

sleeping woes, continued

not good. I've set us back a bit in our efforts to help Ben go to sleep at night and at nap times.

First, last night I let him fall asleep on me for about 10 minutes. Before we put him to bed we woke him up and got him into jammies, but the damage was done. He had remembered how nice sleeping on Mama is, so he was FURIOUS when we put him in his crib. He cried for over an hour.

Then in the middle of the night sometime (no idea when, I wasn't coherent, or it wouldn't have even happened) he woke up and instead of letting him go back to sleep in his crib, out of old habit I got him out and fed him. Then he fell back asleep in our bed, so of course woke up a few times and wanted to eat again. At that point I knew it would be hopeless to put him back in his crib, so he spent the rest of the night with us. Which meant he ate a few times at night, instead of waiting until morning.

So now it is naptime again. He isn't pleased that we've gone back to the evils of solitary crib sleeping. I have to be diligent about not letting him sleep on or with me, even though now that it's not ALL THE FREAKIN' TIME it's sweet again. Last night when he fell asleep on me it was just so wonderful to cuddle with him again while he was asleep. I am sure I'll be able to do that again, after he's fully used to sleeping on his own. I really hope so, because the idea of NOT being able to is very sad. I like sleeping with my boyo, just not 24/7.

Right now, however, it's an all or nothing thing, or he gets confused. I can't wait for this transition to be over.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sweet Pea

Here is Kaia enjoying our pea shoots we got at the farm! We also got baby bok choy (I've never tried it, I'm excited!) spinach, salad greens, and green onions.

He's learning faster than I'd like

Holy Crap. He's learning how to move things around to help himself. He took Kaia's sink out of her kitchen, then dropped it on the ground. At some point he figured out that if he turned it upside down and stood on it he might be able to reach the things under the sink. He couldn't, quite, but still! He moved it where he needed it and stood on it! I'm in trouble.

Monday, June 16, 2008

This past weekend I went up to Canada to surprise Tania at her baby shower. I got a passport several weeks ago, and bought a train ticket for going up, and a bus ticket for coming back. (the train doesn't come down in the morning)

She was really surprised, and it was wonderful to be able to be at her shower. Mike stayed home with both kids! The train ride up was fun, I sat next to a guy who talked a lot, but about really interesting things. Right after getting into Canada, we went past a beach that had about 50 bald eagles! I saw more bald eagles in that 3 minutes than in my entire life. It was awesome.

I won the clothes pin game (will actually be posting a pic about that later) and brought my prize, a little soft bear, home to Kaia. At the station before leaving Canada, I also got her a bookmark, a pair of socks that say "Canada" and a roll the shape and size of a roll of Mentos but is actually 10 pressed-into-tablet towels! She was excited with all of her presents. I bought Ben a hat for next winter that is a raccoon face. It's wool, and will be very toasty! If he keeps in on, of course...that boy HATES hats!

I got TONS of pictures for Tania's scrapbook and I really want to work on it, but it will have to wait until this weekend so I'm not constantly having to get up to get Ben out of things.

I cannot wait to meet Tania's little girl!!!

I'm voting......

Friday, June 13, 2008

Weekend Plans

  • work on Tania's scrapbook
  • organize scrapbook shelf (before working on scrapbook)
  • organize patio
  • go swimming
  • celebrate Father's Day in some currently unplanned way
  • sleep

A little of this, a little of that

One of these days I will post about something NOT related to Ben's sleep habits -- promise! However, today is not the day. Or at least, this is not the post.

Last night Ben took about an hour to fall asleep. He woke up a few times after, but not as much as the night before. I definitely got more sleep! Not caught up by a long shot, but I am hopeful the next few nights will see even more improvement.

Today we added in scheduled naps, since Kaia's school is out for summer. Ben was sleeping in the car every time I took her to or from school, ruining any chance at a decent length nap. I am going to put him down every day around 10, then again in the afternoon (I'll figure out what time depending on how long he sleeps this morning). He's been fussing in there for about 5 minutes, but seems to be calming down.

Tomorrow is Tania's baby shower! In Canada, so I won't be there. I'm really disappointed I can't go, and so I'm trying to think of something fun Tania and I can do together at some point. I was thinking the other day that now that Ben is trying to sleep through the night, I probably could have gone, but it's a bit late, what with the no passport and no financial planning. By a "bit late", of course, I mean "there's no way in hell I could get a passport and plane ticket or gas money together if I started now". I know Tania will have a wonderful time though, and that's all that matters! *pout* (just kidding)

well, my house is a rat's nest, so I must get off my ass and do something about it. Sunday being Father's Day and all, I guess that means I should be treating my husband to a clean house and home cooked meals! wait, I do that anyway...the home cooked meals at least. The house isn't always...shall we say, photo-ready?!

Wish us luck with Ben, send him love.

And Tania--have a BLAST at your baby shower!!

Thursday, June 12, 2008


well. last night sucked. Ben fell asleep after only an hour, which seemed like a good thing, but it just left him with energy to wake up later. He sat up, and then calmed down. and the cycle started. He'd fall asleep, fall over, either bonk his head or just startle himself back awake, sit up and repeat above steps. If I tried to lay him down he'd just get mad.

He woke up this morning at 5:30. After I woke up sufficiently to tell time, I got him out of his crib and fed him. He was pretty cheerful, and fell back asleep for another hour. Then he woke up and didn't eat, but got a diaper change and fell back asleep for 45 minutes or so.

I am so tired. Please keep your fingers crossed that tonight will go better. thank you.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Cheerily Chomping Cheerios

Last night went pretty well. Ben cried for about 2 hours, which WASN'T easy, but after he went to sleep the first time, whenever he'd wake up he only fussed for a minute or so then went back to sleep. Mike and I went to bed around 11:30 after making brownies together. He slept in the livingroom so he wouldn't wake Ben up with snoring. He will come back to the bedroom and Ben will have to learn to deal with it, but for now we just want Ben to get used to sleeping all night and in his crib.

He woke up this morning at 6:30. I got him out of his crib and fed him-he ate quite a bit! I cuddled him and talked to him about the night. He seemed quite happy. He fell back asleep after eating, so I just laid him down in our bed (still just blankets on the floor) and he slept for another 45 minutes. When he woke up again he was his usual cheerful self!

I hope tonight goes even better! I didn't get much more sleep than usual last night since I woke up every time he did, but I have high hopes for tonight.

On another note, he tried cheerios for the first time this morning, and he very much enjoyed them!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Tough Love

Tonight is The Night. well, the First Night Of Hopefully Very Few Nights. Right now I am in the middle (the beginning?!) of listening to Ben cry, then calm down, then cry, then calm down....rinse, repeat. We are almost an hour and a half in, and at the moment he is silent. Poor Kaia is in her room with an Mp3 player and big headphones over the little ones, trying to sleep. I feel so bad for her, but this WILL be better. It will give us more time with her (we decided Ben's bedtime will be at 7, leaving us with some time with her before her summer bedtime of 8).

Starting Friday, we will also be doing naps in the crib. I can't before then because he sleeps in the car while I'm taking Kaia to and from school, but Thursday is her last day for the year.

He is still quiet....I am hopeful.....

I didn't want to do this, but I have to do something. I am not getting even close to enough sleep and it's starting to be dangerous. I NEED MORE SLEEP. His doctor confirmed that he doesn't need food at his age, he is simply in the habit of getting up several times to eat. As a commenter on another site said "If someone gave me a brownie every time I woke up at night, I'd be getting up 5-7 times too!" Speaking of brownies, Mike bought some mix earlier since we both thought Chocolate Fortification would be necessary.

Ben is STILL quiet. Mike and I are going to make brownies. Send Ben happy dreams, okay?

Rain Rain GO AWAY

okay, even for the Pacific Northwest, this is RIDICULOUS!!!! Where the hell is the SUN!?!?

We had an unusually cold winter (snow in MAY), now we are having a cold and gray spring. Please, please, make up for it by a warm, dry summer. I am begging.

In other news, I am sick and Ben is still waking up several times a night. I am making a dr. appt. for this afternoon.

In a later post, I will talk about the things I've been planning for this summer--my first summer as a stay at home mom to two kids. Most of it's free, too!

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Operation: Let Mommy Sleep!

I talked with Mike yesterday about helping me get more sleep. (thanks, Tania and mom, for kickstarting that)

There are several roadblocks. One, up until now, I tried to take a nap when Ben was sleeping after dropping off Kaia at school, but he usually fell asleep on the way home and woke up when I took him out, not falling asleep until I put him in the car to go pick Kaia up. However, after next week, Kaia is out of school, so I'll be able to take a nap in the mornings.

A few people have suggested having Mike take over one or more of the night feedings, which is where I'm really not getting enough sleep. Ben still wakes up 5-7 times a night to eat. He goes right back to sleep each time, which is good, but it's really starting to wear on me. The problem with Mike taking over a couple feedings is that I still wake up when Ben does, usually before Mike (if Mike wakes up at all) With how attuned I am to doing this, I really don't think time will help me sleep through one or two feedings a night, but still get up for others.

However, Mike offered to take over Saturday night feedings all together! It'll take several weeks I think for Ben to get used to it. Last night I slept on the couch and still woke up every time Ben did. Ben also wasn't happy about the change, and cried each time, so not only was I awake, I was awake longer than I would have been if I were feeding him. I think I am going to start feeding him formula for a bottle or two each night so he gets used to it, and hopefully in time he'll get to the point he doesn't cry-so then I won't wake up as long as I am out on the couch. Another really awesome effect was that Mike got a good idea of how I feel, AND he's aware it's even worse for me. The poor man was exhausted this morning, and looked at me with admiration for doing this for the last 8 months. He was sympathetic about it before, but now he understands. If I can keep up with feeding Ben a bottle a couple times each night, next Saturday I may get a couple of hours of uninterrupted sleep! If I can remember how...

Mike has been taking Ben occasionally in the evening allowing me to go to bed early, and we're going to do that a bit more often.

So keep your fingers crossed that all this will add up to me getting a little more sleep. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


Noun: "Hello my little kabookaboom!"

Verb: "Oops! Did you kabookaboom?"

Exclamation: "Kabookaboom!" - while tickling, etc.

No idea where this word came from, but both Mike and I have used it since Ben's birth. It's Ben's nickname, a word to distract him from being upset or to get his attention, a synonym for falling, bonking his head, and in place of peekaboo.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Standin' Up

Yesterday Ben pulled himself up to standing for the first time! He stayed there a long time, enough for me to take a few pictures, and for Kaia to come out and play with him for a while. He has the strength to walk, I think, he just needs the balance.

but I don't WANT to go back.

Want to know what sleep deprivation gets you?

Paper towels when you were wanting toilet paper and already have plenty of paper towels.

Stain remover when you were wanting laundry detergent and already have stain remover.