Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Goodbye 2008

So long
Can't say I'll miss you.
Yes there were a few highlights. I got a new niece. Yay! And finally got to meet her. She's perfect of course.
We found out we're expecting. Exciting and scary all at the same time. Somedays it doesn't seem like such a good idea, but that is parenthood in general I find.
There were also definite low lights. Times I never want to live through again as long as I live. I suppose we survived and maybe came out stronger-who knows. Time will tell.
And it really doesn't look like we'll be getting the house. The bank is being an obnoxious machine. Fine, whatever.
In 2009 we have things to look forward to.
Meeting our new baby.
The kids getting older.
Possibly looking for another house or maybe experiencing our first major remodel.
I just hope there is more joy in 2009.
*Crossing my fingers*

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Home sweet Home

My guys in the snow
We finally gave up on waiting for the house to close before going home for Christmas. So we caught a lull between storms and drove down on Friday. It was a bit hairier than we expected, but we did make it. Only had to put on chains once, and very few threats to the kids lives.
It did turn from a normally 7-8 hour trip to an 11 hour trip. E may be a bit traumatized, but should get over it in time for the return trip, right? I did discover that those fruit sticks and cheese puffs from Gerber will get us a few hours. It also makes for some mighty interesting diapers the next day.
We are really grateful to have made it here safely. Our hometown is under a blanket of snow, ice and more snow. Aunt J is snowed in and can't get out to Idaho. She had a flight scheduled for today, but it looks like Christmas day is the soonest she can get out. We will have to play it by ear to see when we can actually get home. There should be a break in the weather by the weekend, allowing us to get through. If worse weather comes through, we are fortunate that C can take more time off work if he really needs to.
The kids are having a great time with PapaCoyote and GrandmaJ. As you can see in the picture, they've all been out in the snow. I, on the other hand, have been perfectly content to stay inside with my knitting and blankets! I can't wait to see if my brother and his family can make it out here tomorrow so I can my hands on my new niece! And my little L too. I am one happy auntie. Just ask me how cute my nieces are. I dare you! :)
E is having fun with all the space to run around, but has apparently decided that letting mom sleep is ridiculous. I finally got him settled down to where he could sleep in the crook of my arm just so by 3:30am last night. And has been running full tilt all day. Argghh! I'm thinking I'm seeing signs of bedtime now though.
Merry Christmas, and happy winter holidays to all! Hope you all are warm and dry in the midst of all these storms.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Pictures

I promise, I deliver. Eventually.


The stitches. They still look good and fresh in this picture. He proceeded to pop the 2 middle ones and open the wound back up within 36 hours. We taped him back up since they can't redo stitches. Boy that made him mad! He is bandage free again. I think he has maybe one stitch left, but it is mostly healed up. I think it is in that healing and itchy stage now. We'll see if he learned anything at all from this experience. I'm not thinking anything useful. He still climbs on the oven. Maybe the lesson just doesn't cross situations very well. Oh, never mind. I just pulled him off the very same arm of the very same couch. sigh.


Le Belly. This is the 19 week shot. As if I"m keeping up with weekly shots. That was the idea, but apparently you have to be awake. I'm not really in this picture. Once the kids go to bed, I turn into the mommy zombie. My poor husband.

The whole happy family. See, they clean up pretty good, don't they? Our temple has a beautiful atrium where you can have pictures taken. It's so nice and warm and full of tropical plants. It is in the lobby so anyone can go in. If you are ever in Portland, I encourage you to stop in. It is especially enticing this time of year!
Anyway I thought the boys looked so handsome in their white clothes. They got to keep the bow ties. The couple who runs the nursery that is for families who are being sealed is so sweet. She hand sews bowties for all the boys and bibs for all the babies. I have no idea what she does for the girls--not having had that experience!


This is way late, and I apologize, but M's 10th birthday. He is officially a double-digiter! He was pretty excited for this birthday. It was so nice to have grandma and grandpa here too. That's PapaCoyote there next to M. He has been without reliable internet and so hasn't been keeping up his blog. So sad. I miss reading it.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Fun and games

I figure I'll just pop in once a month or so and say hi.
HI

Maybe more than that.

First off, 15 month old children cannot fly. They are surrounded by guardian angels and that is why they do not get hurt more than they do. But they cannot fly.
We just returned from a family outing to the ER. E now has a lovely collection of stitches above his left eye. He was climbing on the couch as usual, playing with the light. He got it on and off (so proud!) and turned just so. He bounced his head back and forth between the arm of the futon and the end table. He screamed. C and I both saw. C got to him first. Not too concerned as he does this a few times a week. But then C asked for help. Apparently the warm wet feeling down the front of his shirt made him feel something was amiss. After mopping up much blood and thinking it looked a bit deep, I threw clothes at everyone so we could head off to our friendly local emergency room.
As soon as E was settled into the car, he calmed right down. I questioned by call to take him in. We decided to go ahead and get it checked. Good thing, as the doc on call took barely a look and proclaimed stitches were definitely in order. I took the older boys out while they wrapped and sewed they poor babe up. The nurse commented on just how strong he is. And introduced herself. Something about getting to know each other over the course of the next few years? I think she likes me. Awwww.

I am still pregnant. And out of the "is she or isn't she" stage. So people now feel comfortable congratulating me. Mostly I feel really good. Very healthy, baby looks good. I have another midwife appt on Tuesday. I really enjoy them. I have an awesome midwife. Which is comforting. I do still have the hip issue. Basically, the way my ligaments are softening is leading to a little too much separation. Walking is getting painful. I cannot lift one leg independent of the other without pain. I move a lot slower. And I take awhile to get upstairs. Hopefully this will go away quickly after the birth. If you know of someone who was in pain forever after birth, I don't want to hear about it. ;)
The baby is getting more active and that is so much fun. C and the boys have even felt kicks. It's real! This one seems to be a bit more mellow. We'll see if the pattern holds. I really need a mellow child. Isn't my turn?

We are still waiting on the house. Waiting, waiting, waiting. Short sales suck. We just got paperwork that extends the closing date to the 23rd of Dec. Not sure I believe anyone will be ready to sign stuff then even. The way the are dragging their feet. C'mon people. I'm offering to BUY the house. As in PAY for it. It won't sit empty. You don't have to risk a foreclosure auction. Just GIVE ME THE HOUSE ALREADY!!!!
Yes, I have an opinion on this. How could you tell?
We have paint and flooring picked out. We have a plan of attack. I just need a house to go with said plan.

To end on a good note, on the 29th of November, we got to take E to the temple to be sealed to us. It was a great day and we are so happy to have all of the adoption stuff (well, almost all) done with. Now we are just a plain ol' eternal family. To read more about what this means to us, you can go here.

As soon as I find the camera, I'll post pictures. Or steal some from C's camera. I think I lost a few things that day. Sigh.

Friday, November 21, 2008

So overdue for an update

The one picture I took at Haloween. Just before heading out to the Harvest Festival and Trick or Treating. Hey, at least I got one!


I have been so very bad about pictures lately. I do mean to do better. Maybe if you all harp on me a bit more I'll do something about it. :)

I'll just go through and update person by person.
E is growing and growing, as one would expect a 14 month old to do. He can now climb just about anything, and gets immensly frustrated when things don't go his way. Talking seems to be the next big thing. In addition to "daddy" and "doggy", he now says "uh oh" "hi" "up" and some sort of mumble that sounds like all done. And he can shake his head very emphatically. I think he said "baba" for bottle yesterday too. This is the age when it is nice that they can start communicating more instead of just screaming. I keep trying to teach him to sign, but he is not the least bit interested. Bit stubborn this one!
The challenge with E lately has been nights. He wakes up a lot, often because he is wet. I just can't keep him dry at night. I tried a heavy wool cover with 2 large prefolds and a costco microfiber towell in the middle. Soaked by 2. I've gone to just the Huggies overnight diapers (yuck) and change them when he wakes around 2 or three. He got mad at the layers of cloth I was using because he couldn't roll around as much as he is used to. I'm trying to re-read the No Cry Sleep Solution so I can remember the techniques in there. He did do better last night, and I hope it's a trend. I really need some sleep!

G is growing fast too. He has gotten so tall just in the last little while. I really need to go through his dresser and get rid of the 489763 clothes that don't fit, but he keeps trying to put on. He knows he is getting bigger and has the cutest strut. He also keeps getting more and more handsome. I may have to lock him up in a few years to keep the girls at bay. We'll see. G is loving learning about letters and shapes. He refuses to learn colors though. It's not that he's color-blind at all, he just doesn't want to learn the names for the colors. Silly kid.
Oh, and as we've been working on getting the new house, everytime I say it's time to pick up or start putting anything away, he asks, "is it time to move?" And sounds so excited about it! G is my sweet helper kid. Everytime I start cooking, he pulls up a stool. Often he just gets pulled off it by E, but he sincerely wants to help.

M is so much a 10 year old boy. He wants to live on the computer. Now that he has Spore to play, it's even worse! He spent over 6 hours on the computer yesterday! I'm not sure today, but less, I think. I'm kinda hoping he gets it out of his system a bit. I'll cut him back on computer time next week for sure!
We are right back where we were with the homeschooling. I had tried to be more structured about it, but it makes us all such nasty people, it is poisonous! At least now he is reading like crazy. So I don't worry about it. I figure as long as he is reading a variety of books and showing interest in lots of things, we're fine. He's only 10 after all! And he does ask me all kinds of questions after reading a book. We look up geography info, chemistry, religions, you name it. I'm happy with that. Till my next panic anyway. LOL

I'm staying mostly sane through all of my kids antics. I do wonder about pregnancy hormones frequently. I do admit that sleep deprivation combined with said hormones is sometimes a very ugly business! I'm now at 15 weeks and feeling great as far as pregnancy symptoms go. I can feel the baby move now and then-no hard kicks, but bumps and rolls. I was very excited to start feeling that. It makes it more real. When it has been 10 years since my last pregnancy, the whole thing does seem pretty sureal. I am getting excited about the birth and getting to meet this newest family member. As far as being a mom to 4 kids, well, "I think I can" is my mantra. We'll do fine I'm sure.
We just finished up with Village Home and won't be going back next term. We still love Village, I just needed to find ways to cut a few extra $$ out of the spending. That's a quick way to do it. By the time we pay registration, then gas there and back and incidental expenses while up there, well it adds up. I'm also re-learning other frugal habits. Sad how good I was in college, and now--not so good. I think I'm making improvements though.
Of course, this is all because of the house. We just got word that the bank is reviewing the file and we "should" hear back soon. I don't know what soon means. But the sellers have signed their paperwork. So if the bank says yes, we can close right away. But then, that means paying 2 mortgages. We can do it, but it will be tight, obviously. My goal is to get that house ready, our stuff over there and this one spiffed up really fast. Then try to promote the heck out of our house.
Say, any of my readers want a cute house in a great neighborhood? I know a good one! There's even some homeschoolers in the neighborhood!
I've also taken some time to do some knitting. I need to get pictures taken, but I have finished a sweater for me, socks for G and a diaper soaker for E from some of the yarn J and I dyed. Next up is socks for M. Then I have socks to finish for me. No holiday knitting this year. I wasn't brave enough to commit to that, and now I'm glad I didn't!

C is still at the same job. They have announced voluntary cutbacks, but so far he seems to be in a relatively safe position. Hopefully it stays that way. He hasn't had much time to do his photography lately, which is a shame. Maybe I'll kick him out sometime this week or next to do that. I mean, if you want to sweetie! He is such an awesome man. Even though he has been tired too, he works hard to take care of us. He makes sure to spend time with the boys in the evenings, do dishes and help with housework, gives me back and foot rubs, and goes along with my crazy ideas. What a man. Sigh*Swoon

There is probably much more, but that will have to suffice for now. I'll try to take some pictures and post more regularly. Try being the operative word here.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Wearing a toddler on your back

video

Here, I decided a video would be the most helpful. Trying to figure out just what pictures would convey the most important information didn't seem productive. And I'll add text instructions to clarify. I'm using "him" since that's what I've got! :)

Starting with the center of the wrap, place this on the baby's shoulders. I like to wrap it over his arms a bit to make sure it stays in place. Grab the shoulders and swing him up over your back. If you like higher up, just make sure to start him out there. Then, leaning forward, pull the wrap tightly to the front. My Hoppediz wrap has color highlighted selvages which is very helpful! Keeping these sides tight in your hands, wad up the wrap and tie once in front. For higher up babies, tie above your breasts, for lower, below. Women how have a bit "more" than me seem to like to tie above the breasts too.
Holding one end between your knees, pull the other end up over your shoulder and behind baby. Make sure not to twist as you do this. Before E decided he always had to have his arms free no matter what, I always wrapped his arms in too. Much more secure. Cross the wrap over the bum and under the opposite leg. Hold that end between your knees and repeat with the other end.
Now bring both ends together and tie in a secure knot. I used to tie at my belly, but now I tie over my belly.
A slight variation of this is to make sure the wrap begins off center. That way, when you get to the final knot, you will be able to tie it off to the side. This is helpful for doing household chores--like dishes, cleaning bathrooms, that kind of thing. Or anytime you are worried about the knot in front.
As long as you make sure you are keeping the wrap taut as you tie, this is a very secure way to carry your baby. I think E lived in this wrap for several months! I was able to get chores done, go on hikes, take walks with the kids (without worrying about whether or not a stroller could go there!) go shopping, and go to cultural events. Wrapping keeps the baby close, warm and secure. I never have to worry about dealing with strollers, baby getting fussy, or darting away. It also means that he doesn't change my center of gravity much. We decided that this beat the Kelty backpack hands down! Baby just feels so much lighter in the wrap.
There are also lots of instructions on the web for front carries for younger babies. I did use the rucksack carry some when E was little. If I get a chance (and can remember how!) I'll try to get a video up of that one.
This tie looks complicated, I agree. I always get tons of looks, and nervous offers of help when I tie it in public. But after a few practice runs, I felt comfortable enough to do it on my own, and I never looked back. This is hands down the most comfortable way to carry a baby. I encourage you to try it. If you don't own a wrap (and why don't you??!!), a purchased one is indeed very nice. But you can also make one by purchasing 5-6 yards of fabric, cutting down the middle, and finishing the edges. Cheap, simple lifesaver.

Happy Babywearing Week

I meant to do something earlier this week. Seems some weeks get away from me like that. I want to do a tutorial of backwears and plan to get those pictures done tonight. For now, here's some babywearing pictures from past posts.

Homebirth safety

I know it's been a long time. I hope to have blogging time soon. For now, here's a link to tons of homebirth safety references. It's a long page, but has tons of good information and links to studies.
http://gentlebirth.org/archives/homsafty.html

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

The giant floor pillow

Awhile back, C found a giant floor pillow online and bought it. It came in 2 giant boxes. One for the covers, and one (or 2, I can't remember) for the stuffing. I put it all together and set it up. Instant hit with the kids.
Every kid that comes over makes a beeline for the pillow. It is a giant purple kid magnet in the middle of our living room. The great thing about it is that it is totally open ended piece of furniture. The kids play on it when they can't be outside. We can snuggle on it as a family. We can lean against it to watch movies. M has figured out how to incorporate it into furniture forts.
Thing is, everyone who comes over wants to know where we got it. I didn't know. So C found where to get one. Now you too can have a giant pillow taking up all kinds of space in your living room!
Here it is. Knock yourself out.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

See, there's no rule

I am LDS. I am a Democrat. (mostly) Sometimes that makes me feel like a bit of an outsider. Sorry, I just don't choose the issue of abortion over the issues of education, war, caring for the poor, respecting other nations, and preserving the lives of everyone over 7 months gestation. That was a sarcastic apology btw.
This statement has been issued before, but has been re-issued in more detail. Now I have "official" backing. Like I needed it. But still, I feel better now.
Also, Brightonwoman had this link on her blog. An excellent reason to NOT vote for McCain.

Oh, and Happy Birthday to Me. It's kinda weird being now a year older than my mom was when she had me. Not sure why, it just is. Like a milestone or something. Thanks Mom. I'm glad to be your daughter. You too Dad. ;)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

$7,210


Remember this picture? Nice yard, eh? The kids want to keep it as a prairie. The law says it needs to have a few less weeds.
I called a couple of landscape companies to give bids on what it would cost to get the yard into livable condition. Not show condition. Not stun you neighbors condition. Just passable. Back to bare bones we can plant our own plants condition.
The first bid came in today.

$7,210

EEEYIIIKES!

That's 7 Grand to haul out weeds and dump some dirt on the lawn. Then come back in the spring and sprinkle some seed on the lawn to fill in the areas where they would fill in holes.
We may be in the wrong line of work.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pumpkin patch

On Friday, we went to the pumpkin patch with our friends. What a fun day. We started with a tractor ride out to the pumpkins, where there were lots of perfect pumkins to choose from. It was a tough decision, but we managed to get 3 good ones home. After loading them into the car, the kids played in the hay maze, the playground, the haystacks and got to see the goats and chickens. It must have been an excited day because K went into labor the very next day and delivered a beautiful baby girl!



E has a new talent. Actually, he's been working on climbing a long time. Since before he could walk, really. But he just learned how to get up on the chairs without tipping them over. Is this not the look of pride in a job well done?!

Why I haven't taken as many pictures lately:
He grabs the camera everytime I bring it out. And he doesn't make a happy face when I don't give it to him. Make picture taking mayhem.
"Doggie" is his word. I think he says daddy too, but it sounds just like doggie, so you have to go by context. He signs all done. But mostly, he walks around chanting "doggie" He says it really clear to! From the time he wakes up, till bedtime, "doggie." I'm happy he's talking, I just hope he expands his repetoire soon. Parents, they're never satisfied, eh?


The backyard of the house down the street. In front is the "grassy" area. It was probably once just the regular green grass run of the mill yard part. Through the right hand gate is the garden area. Behind the greenhouse are (I think) 3 apple trees. We tasted them and they are yummy! Through the left hand arbor gate is the deck and hot tub slab. We'd probably forgo the hot tub, but it would be a great patio, and the deck has a bench which you can see the back of. There is a fire pit set up on the deck too. Not sure if the owner would take that or not, but there is a brick area all set up for it. I called a couple of landscape companies today to get quotes on bringing the yard back to neighborhood standards. I'm really curious what they'll say. We wouldn't hire it done I don't think. It's just to help our case in making a lower offer. IF we make an offer. (See Honey, I said IF. In all CAPS!)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Good day

Today started out slow. Real slow. At 11 when my friend called, I was still my pj's. I was planning to take a shower when I put E down for a nap. I prefer to shower without his help pulling the curtain open. Anyway, I threw on some clothes since she was on her way over. I spend maybe 3 minutes handstitching a repair on her wedding dress she's selling.
Made lunch, read some. Considered doing some housework so I loaded the dishwasher. Yay me! And I put the roast in the crockpot. I find it easier to cook dinner earlier in the day. It sounds better then.
But the really good news is 2 fold. First, I finally found the listing agent on the house and she called me back. She is one person who actually seems eager to sell the house! I have entrance codes for the house so we can go check it out and have it inspected whenever we want. Hopefully we can get an offer in ASAP for the bank to start reviewing. Finally is feeling like this might happen!
Second, my sewing machine has been in the shop for 2 1/2 weeks! And they just called saying it's done and I can pick it up. Of course, they tell me this AFTER C is already on his way home, having forgotten his cell today. Oh well, tomorrow. Then I can start sewing M's costume. Think I'm cutting it close? Maybe.
I'm just excited to start making myself some clothes that fit!
Oh, and if you are in the Portland area and would like to make up some blankets (or have extras) Legacy Emmanuel Children's Hospital needs baby blankets. Email me if you'd like to donate, or just drop them off there. They can be made out of pretty much anything, just standard baby blanket size.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Here they come

The catalogs have started to descend upon us.
Since the first one arrived on Saturday, the boys have fought over it back and forth. Now the second one is here. If you don't count Nova's catalog that comes earlier in the year. I'm sure its the beginning of the flood.
I hear chants of "an' I wan' ______". Or, "Mom, come look at this!" Yes, I already looked at the catalog dear. And no, I don't need to look at every item 15 more times just to verify that it is a wonder of a toy. Yes, I'm sure it would be lots of fun and entertainment. But, in concert with the 15 million toys we already own, and the complete inventory of that catalog that you also want, I sincerely doubt it would ever get touched. Much less remembered.
I have contemplated for weeks now dumping all they toys that get scattered and ignored, or even the ones which reside quietly in the closet upstairs. So quiet in fact I'm not sure the boys remember they own them. What if I just had one very teeny box of toys in the whole house? I imagine they would really and truly play with those toys. Or continue to play with the cushions and blankets and pots and pans and boxes they find lying around. Well, lying around because they played with them this morning and no one picked them up.
I do have a kitchen toy ban. Meaning no toys in the kitchen. I consider it a hazard to have small toys underfoot when I'm carrying hot dishes and knives! And every evening after dinner all the living room toys have to be back in their bins. We do pretty well all things considered. But I wonder what our living room would look like if I could spend that evening time folding the laundry that has taken up permanent residence on the black chair instead of hovering over the toy and kitchen cleanup. And would there be fewer squabbles if the living room and bedroom and stairs and hallway and closets were not littered with toys. One thing I learned in my degree program was that, in setting up an environment for early childhood, less is more. Children get overwhelmed by too many choices. Leaving open space and just a few toy selections leads to children playing more actively and with more focus.
So why can't I just bite the bullet and do it? One big box (or 5) and one big shove out the door. Really, that's it, right? And I know that with Christmas coming, it's not likely people will give the gift of cleaning out the toy stash. I'm guessing it's going to be more of an add-to-it proposition.
In fact, I'm getting ready to make up the boys' wish lists. Because I'm crazy. And I'm their mom. And Christmas is for fun, right?
I am trying to not be too bad though. I am going to ask that they boys receive the minimum number of toys. Yes, it's fun to open lots of packages, but I'd rather they associate Christmas with being with family and feeling that good feeling than think it's all about the loot. That way, too, I can feel good about buying one quality toy that will last rather than lots of cheaper toys that will wind up in a land fill before next Christmas is even considered.
The other thing we plan to do is Christmas for a family. We have done this in years past and it's so much fun! We find out about a family that may need a little extra help this year and gather up a box full of things we think they would enjoy. Our energy of buying and wrapping and doing gets thrown outside of ourselves. We then drop off the box at the house, knock and run. No one ever knows it was us. We never got around to doing it last year. The difference we noticed was pronounced. The years we have done a secret Christmas there has been a lot more joy in giving. Last year there was just a whole lot more "gimme's" and "I didn't get's". It was sad. So, this year, definitely going back to that tradition!
So, if you get less from us this year, know that our resources probably went to a family that needed it. And it went to teaching our children that Christmas is about service and doing and giving to others. We will still have lots of love left for you when we get together. Maybe even more because of the small stack of brightly wrapped gifts. 'K?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

That's gratitude for ya

G is a very grateful child. He says thank you for lots of things in his night time prayers.
Case in point: Tonight, he was looking around the room coming up with all kinds of things to be grateful for when E popped up and spit in his face.
"Thank you for playing with E and he spits in my face."

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

To my fellow shopppers

Yes, these are all my children.
They are all, all three of them, brothers. Real brothers. Just watch them fight over the best place to watch a movie.
They are from Heaven. Same place all children come from.
I am their real mother. I really wipe the noses, tears and butts. I really deal with the "we have no bananas-so-you-can't-have-one-for-breakfast-s". I really feed, clothe and bathe them. I give them real hugs and kisses.
I really love them with all of my heart so much it hurts. They really all call me mommy.

They do have a birth mother. She loves them too. We love her. I imagine I love her in the way a man loves his wife after seeing her give birth and provide life for his children.
Her personal history (and the boys' personal history) is none of your damn business. Are you prepared to discuss your personal and sexual history? All the foods/drugs/substances you take or don't take? The most intimate and personal decisions you've made in your lifetime? Then why are you asking me in the grocery store?

My children know they are different. They see it every day when they cuddle with mom and dad and big brother. They see it as they play with hundreds of toys and books that are all filled with white children. When they see other families who all look alike. When they get older they will deal with the pain inflicted by the asinine assumptions by others that skin colors makes some sort of difference in a person. They have a hole in their heart the size of which most of us can never even fathom. They know what it is like to be born expecting to be loved by the mother who bore them. And then to be raised by another. That is lasting pain. It never goes away no matter how much love and stability they have. That is the loss of a mother at the most vulnerable time in life. Please don't spend our busy time pointing all of these things out to us.

I have lots of answers about adoption. So do lots of professionals. If you have an honest question, tell me. Ask me how to contact me. Give me your number. I would love to discuss this miracle with you and help you grow your family in this amazing way. I do have references for agencies, lawyers and websites. Over the apples when my children are screaming and hungry and tired of being in the store, or in front of my kids period, is not the place or time. If you are hit by a fit of idle curiosity and see us as a freak show, shut your trap. Turn around and head the other direction. I can often tell why you are asking. If you get a snarky answer, well you were asking an inappropriate question. Save your huffing.

I am grateful every day for my kids. I am grateful the Lord trusts me enough to be their mom. But we have typical days. I do not think about how they came to our family every day. They are just my kids. We get up (often too early). We eat breakfast. We have good days and not so good days. Just like you. We have sick days and healthy days. I wonder at the speedy growth of my kids. I cuddle them and love them. We have dinner squabbles and bedtime routines. I get frustrated with my lack of patience and mothering skills often.
They get frustrated with my lack of patience and mothering skills too.
Are they grateful? I don't know. They may not know until they are in their 20's and reach a developmental stage where they can process that. Maybe later. I don't know. For now, they love their mom and dad. They love doing fun things. They don't like being told no. They don't appreciate that they can't have everything they want. They get tired and cranky. They are kids. Do your kids thank you for being their mom and dad? Probably not. My kids are no different.

This is my family. I wouldn't change a thing. Try not to judge me harshly by what you see in 5 minutes or maybe even 5 years, and I will try to return the favor.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The sign in the yard

No, not that sign yet. We're working on it though. Anyone want a cute house in a great neighborhood with 3 bed/2.5 baths and cool backyard? Ask around. Please??? :)

No, the sign I'm talking about was suggested by M last Monday. We'd had a bit of a rough day. It happens. But M was apparently fed up with his sad position in life. He called me back up to his bedroom that night.
"I just want to let you know that I'm putting a sign in the front tomorrow. It will say, '9 year old child lives here. Needs new parents.'"
I expressed that we would miss him and wished him luck. I may have suggested too that he ask around Village Home the following day. "There's lots of really nice families there."

Gah, I'm so not a nice mom. Maybe I'd better start a therapy savings account for him now, rather than a college account.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Homebirth

So I only got a couple of questions, but you can keep asking!
Lanna expressed concern over the safety (mine) of birthing at home. My birth with M was indeed fraught with troubles, but they were all iatrogenic, meaning the hospital caused them.
I arrived at the hospital in full transition--over 6 cm dilated. The paperwork and check in crap made labor slow a bit, but I still felt tense and ready to fall over the edge into laborland. But the "professionals" kept me too cerebral. I started to get kinda panicky and worried that this was going to take days. I was also hungry, but knew better than to ask for food. The dr offered to break my water and I readily agreed. A woman in transition will agree to ANYTHING. That increased the intensity of my contractions, and a nurse gave me a pain reliever through an IV. I had asked for no IV. I also had a bright red band on my wrist indicating my allergy to codeine and derivitives. Lot good that did. She gave me something related to codeine and my bp started to plummet. M's heart rate did too. I was ready to push (when, by the way, same nurse came in practically demanding I have an epidural--brain dead freak) and the dr was concerned enough about the 2 of us that he cut a big huge episiotomy and M came out fast. He wasn't breathing because of the effects of the drugs. Combined with our low blood sugar (which I have anyway--the hard work of labor just made it worse) we were in tough shape. My bp was 40/30 ish. It came right back up as soon as someone brought be a piece of bread and juice. M nursed right away once they got him bagged, and we were fine. Until the Hep B shot, but that's a whole 'nother post!

With a homebirth, I will not leave the comfort of my home. No one will offer me pain meds or interventions. My midwife will not even be in the room with me if I don't want her in there. I can eat whatever and whenever I want. She will monitor our heart rates about every 1/2 hour but that's it. I can deliver in whatever position I want, and anyone I want can catch baby.
So far, I don't really think I want a waterbirth. I kind of envision standing for the delivery or maybe kneeling. Obviously not on my back or laying down. That's a guaranteed way to have problems! For some reason though, hospitals are the only ones not to have figured that one out. Even cave women were smart enough not to lay down in labor!

The kids will be home for the birth as well. I will start preparing them in a couple of months for what birth entails. M is very excited about the prospect so far. We'll see. I will need to find someone to help with the kids for sure, but I have a while to think about that and get it all worked out!

As far as allergy stuff. I am really not sure. So far I'm just focusing on eating what sounds good. Not doing so has nasty consequences. I'm lucky enough to not have to throw up, but I definitely feel unsettled if I try to eat something based on what I think I should eat instead of what I crave. I do eat a much better diet than I did 10 years ago--no doubt about it. I am also trying to eat more raw and fermented foods--well at least I'm telling myself I should, I just need to work on actually doing it. I think a big factor is that I haven't had much trans fats in a couple of years, I will refuse the Rhogam while actually pg and the baby will have no vaccines. Those seem to be the biggest triggers as far as I can tell. I am trying to do more research to see what else I need to do. The problem is that no one really knows what caused the allergies, so it's all conjecture and he-said-she-said. I'll just have to prayerfully consider it all and do the best I can. Meh.

I need to go call the county assesor about that house up the street. Since the Real Estate agent doesn't seem to be all that motivated to call me back. Seriously, any recommends for agents in the SW PDX area?

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Let the chelation begin

I keep forgetting to update on M. We've been seeing a Nutritional Therapist for several months now and seem to be seeing results.
Obviously, for his allergies to be so bad, there was a lot of stuff going on with M. I was worried about heavy metals, and the dr said that yes, he does have mercury, aluminum and others (those being the main 2), but his system wasn't yet ready to deal with them. First, we worked on getting the pituitary gland in working order. It's the control house. We did this through herbs--all of it, really is herbal. The chemical overload of western med would, in my opinion, be way too much for his already damaged system. Plus, western med doesn't recognize most of his issues. Anyway, since his pituitary wasn't fully functional when we started, it was having a hard time making enough HCl for his stomach to digest food with. This was the source of the increased allegies-all the new allergens. Food particles were not being broken down by the stomach, passing to his intestine where they are absorbed. But large food particles are recognized as invaders by the immune system. Hence the problem. So, getting him started on the acid supplement made a huge difference. No new allergies since that started. Whew!
Then we needed to work on draining some of the excess toxins from his kidneys and liver. Also herbal. That took awhile. The dr wants to go slow so nothing gets dumped on his system.
Awhile back we increased pro-biotics. That helps the balance in the gut. And since food is more digested, it's getting us somewhere now. His skin is mostly cleared up.
When we came back from Rockaway with his kin itchy again, it gave the dr another clue. He has put him on an iodine supplement so his body can better use fats in his diet. The theory being that even though he's eating lots of good fats, he can't really assimilate them, robbing his skin of it's protective oils. If this works, his skin should be much healthier.
And finally, since some of his organs are doing a bit better, he has started chelation therapy. This is to start moving some of the heavy metals out. We had to wait since before, with his liver and kidneys needing some help, the metals would just be re-deposited around his body. This is really, really low-level. So it may take awhile to complete, but will be easier on his system.
I can definitely tell when he starts something new. He doesn't sleep as well, and his attitude gets a little worse. But overall, I think we're making progress. We just don't have the major, huge meltdowns anymore. We still have meltdowns, just not as big! Progress!
On the food front, we took out grains for quite awhile, and have been putting them back in. I had read that soaking grains made them easier to digest. I was a little skeptical at first. But in the spirit of things, M's first re-indroduction to grains was soaked teff. Then soaked millet. He was doing just fine with them, so I went ahead and whipped up some pancakes with flour straight out of the bin. Big mistake! He was raging, evil monster all day! Totally had no emotional control and lashed out at everyone over everything. It was kinda scary. We're back to just soaked grains. That just means that I mix up the flour and liquid the night before and let it soak on the counter overnight. Or whole grains. Just like you would soak beans before cooking them. Simple, but effective.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Oh, yeah, I have a blog

Who knew?

Life has been crazy here of course. Not too long after my last post, I took the 3 boys to the coast with my parents. Dad has great pictures at PapaCoyote. So I'll just direct you there, and you can look at his awesome pictures! Who, Me? Lazy?
On the 27th, we celebrated G's birthday. He's 4 years old, people! 4! He got a skateboard and went right out, got on it, and started trying to learn how to do tricks. Naturally. Sheesh. My mom made him a great blanket, Aunt J bought him pads to wear with the skateboard, and GramRe and PaR gave him a Cars playset. And, he got books and clothes. None of which are nearly as exciting a big ol' sugary cake.
Which he begged for for breakfast the next 2 days running. For some reason, the rest of the cake disappeared soon after.
The next day, Sunday, we blessed E at church. It was awesome to have mine and C's parents, and Aunt J there. And our ward family, of course. E wasn't too keen on having all these men put their hands on his head when they could just as well toss him in the air and play with him (I mean, Really!), but he did very well. Next step is a trip to the temple to have him sealed to us.

In other craziness, we have decided to sell this house and buy another before baby comes in May. Yeah, craziness. But I don't want to move with a newborn, or 4 children period, really. And I don't want to give birth in a remodel. We may have found a house. I always assumed we'd move up close to Portland, but in writing out my reasons for moving up vs staying here, the list looks a little pathetic. We have established lives here for 5 years now and there are a lot of really good reasons to stay. Not least of which is our awesome neighborhood. So we have been talking about the house up the street. Is it silly to move 3 houses away? But it's 2,300 sq feet, 4 bedrooms plus a den, and a gardening-ready backyard. As in-greenhouse, garden area and mature apple trees. And who knows what else is in there. The house has sat vacant for about 3 or 4 months now and it's hard to see through all the weeds.
When we went into the backyard (tresspassing, I know!), the kids had a blast. So M said he definitely wanted to buy it. A few days later when we were talking about the amount of work the house needs, he caught something about yard work to be done. "You mean you'd cut out the jungle?" When told we would, indeed, "cut out the jungle," he expressed that any house is as good as the next then. LOL
So, anyone out there an expert in buying a pre-foreclosure? Know of someone who is? Any tips and advice? I'd love to hear it!
But, now I need to get to work getting this house put into shape to sell. And interviewing a few handymen to do the work on things like the shower, ducts and whatnot.
Hey, at least I have my midwife and love her. I can give birth, I just need a home to do it in. That brings me to something else. I want to do some posts about natural birth. Any questions about it? Things you'd like me to cover? Questions about homebirth? Shoot. Even you, David.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Suprise!

You have to watch those practical jokes.

A couple of weeks ago, I started looking at the calendar trying to figure out when that beloved relative of mine was due back for a visit. Hmmm, she's a little late. I didn't think much of it. After all, 7 years of infertility leads you to not think much of that kind of thing.
So, the next day, I decided take a pregnancy test to get things started. That is the best way to start your period, y'know. But, I decided to have a little fun with my poor husband. I would come downstairs all excited to see how he reacted. Kinda mean, maybe.
As I sat waiting to see the results of my test (why do I wait when I know what it's going to say?) and planning my facial expression, I started paying more attention to what was going on. See, normally, it takes a few minutes for the test line to show up, and then, if it is positive, the "pregnant" line starts to darken over the course of 3-5 minutes. In theory, any line--no matter how faint--is a positive.
But mine didn't work that way.
No, not at all.
The "pregnant" line showed up nice and dark. Before the test line.
Jokes on me!

Naturally, I made C run to the store and buy another test. Actually, he volunteered. That was a digital test. It was an agonizing minute while I watched that annoying hour glass flash at me. I think I'd rather just use the old fashioned-watch-the-pee-creep-across kind if I have to do it again.
Finally, it flashed my answer. Pregnant.
So, apparently I am. 7 weeks according to my calculations. That puts us in line for a May baby. Right around J's birthday. I'm not sure I will totally believe it until I hear a heartbeat or feel a kick or something. It still seems a little unreal. Remember-that's 7 YEARS of infertility.
One starts to believe a certain view of the world, and it is hard to switch a brain over to a new reality. But I'm trying! My body is helping me too. I feel pretty good so far, fortunately. I felt a little nauseous yesterday from not eating lunch (church). I'm also very tired, but that could just as easily be from E waking up all too frequently! LOL
And then there are the frequent trips to the potty and sore chest, and the very slightly growing belly. That seems a little unfair to me, honestly. I mean, only 7 weeks, or rather 5 weeks of a growing kiddo, and I have already put away at least one pair of pants? And some of my others are decidedly uncomfortable. I'm trying to make them work anyway.
Guess I get to head the the thrift store for pants and skirts to re-work soon!
I'm glad our families are so excited. And I really am looking forward to this baby. It's exciting to have a child I didn't have to work quite so hard for. ;) And I'm hoping to finally get my homebirth!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Picture update

First of all, we'll start with a picture of M in his (un?)natural habitat:

He likes to put in an audiobook and turn on the computer. Makes him feel a bit of "King of the Living Room." I imagine he'd chat on his cell phone if I was the nice mom he invisions buying him one. Poor kid.


Birthday!! E turned 1 yesterday! We're having a dinner for him with Aunt J on Saturday, but he got to open his very first present ever right on time. Gramma J and Papa Coyote send a package of cute clothes. E got a kick out of being given a box AND a big piece of paper to tear up. What a day. Oh, and I do bathe my kids on occasion. We had just returned home from the park when I took these.


Successful Goodwill trip:
I went to buy sweaters to felt, and we found thse skates. G put them on as soon as we got home and kept them on for pretty much 3 days straight. There were tears indeed when mom explained that we can't wear skates inside, or even to bed. He wore them on the sidewalk (where he practiced jumping even!), in the grass, in the gravel, and everhwhere in between. He did discover the hard way that you can't get on a bicycle with skates on without a tremendous amount of practice.

Finally, I got both pairs of pj's together at the same time. So here's a picture. I used the pajama/long john patterns in the 4/04 issue of Ottobre magazine. Looove those patterns! And I got the fabric at Mill End in their annex--so cheap!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Don't see the yogurt

I made yogurt last night from goat milk. G has been begging for yogurt for days. So I gave him some this morning. Then, while I was making my oatmeal, he said he wanted some. Fair enough. So I made enough for both of us and put his portion in the freezer to cool.
He asked how long it would take. I told him it would be done as soon as his yogurt was gone. I'm not sure he had really touched the yogurt yet and thought this might encourage the eating of it.
He dug in and ate several bites of yogurt. As soon as I stood up and headed back into the kitchen he shouts that his yogurt is done. "Is my oatmeal done?"
"Yup," I said, "if your yogurt is gone."
I mixed up the oatmeal with maple syrup and cinnamon (the ONLY way to eat oatmeal People!) and brought it to him at the table. He puts his hand over the yogurt bowl and says, "don't see the yogurt."
There were at least 5 or 6 bites left.
Goofy kid.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Hooray! Hooray!

It's official!
Our lawyer called on Friday to let us know the judge had signed the adoption decree and he had it on his desk ready to mail to us. Hooray!!!
E is now officially ours. At last! It's been such a looooooong process. I'm thrilled that it is over. And now I can go yell at our adoption agency about their ability to complete and forward paperwork without worrying about them disrupting the process. Well, like, legally disrupting, rather than just being inept.
But, Hooray!
Can you tell I'm happy and relieved? It really sucks knowing that your child is not really yours. That he legally belongs to someone else and you have to tell them before you do anything major. As soon as Utah sends along his birth certificate, and we get a social security number, we could just whisk him right out of the country! Now that's freedom.
Umm, anyone want to foot the bill for a family of 5 to travel someplace fun--well, with access to all of M' special food anyway? Anyone? Yeah, me neither.
We celebrated by jumping up and down, grinning and swinging the baby around, telling him "you're ours!" He thought we'd lost it.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Some sewing

Luckily, I have had a chance to do some sewing lately. I always feel better after I make something. And I have a loooooong list of things I really, really want to make.
First up, was a t-shirt for me. I found the fabric at Mill End and loved it. It is so buttery soft and pretty to boot. I figure that since I always wind up wearing jeans and t-shirts no matter what, I might as well have some pretty t-shirts to wear.
The second project was a pair of jeans for my nephew. His awesome momma let me know that his jeans I just made were suddenly rendered too small by a growth spurt. Yay, Joseph! And, of course, I couldn't stand that he was sad about that, so I had to make a new pair. This pair is better than the second in that they have a Tardis on one leg. I really, really hope they fit. They are on their way. Let me know, Lanna, if they don't fit. Send them pack, I'll Etsy them and we'll try again.
I also made a pair of pj's for G, but I can't get a picture of them. He won't model them for the camera, and he keeps peeing in the pants. Yeah, we're having a bit of a potty struggle. Errghh.
Next up is pj's for M, jeans for M, diaper covers for E, and pants and blouse for me. Oh, and I need to start on Christmas stuff. Ideas?



Thursday, August 28, 2008

Trip to OMSI

My little dinosaurs. I knew there was something about dinos that seemed oddly familiar. I just had to see the link.


Inventors at work.


wing up in the air. There are actually signs up all over warning about the dangers of this room for children under three. Yeah, like I could really convince him to stay in the mei tai and watch.


And what's a trip to the science museum without some exploding soda. They actually have an "explosion of the day." That right there is enough to sell an apartment at OMSI!


Exhausting day. This is how they helped me make dinner. Thank you, Darlings!


We had a bit of a summer school "thing" here this summer, and as part of that, I told the kids we could spend the day at OMSI if they cooperated. They squeaked by and today was the day we had picked out to go. Had to catch that Dinosaur exhibit, y'know!
Of course, things don't always go smoothly. We actually were goy'know go on Tuesday, but E was still suffering from the crud from Hades, so we put it off. Today seemed like a go. M was motivated to get his morning chores done and we were just about ready to go by 8:30. Miraculous, no? There was just one thing amiss. G was still asleep. He did wake up just before 9 and manage to eat breakfast and get ready to go. BUT, just as I was getting stuff together and trying to find my missing 3 year old, I find him in his bed. "I'm hot and bizzy," he says. I feel him, and he smiles so on we go. I question if we should go, but the kids talk me into it.

We have to stop at Whole Foods to get food of course, because I have nothing that is very packable for lunch out. E fell asleep 5 minutes from the store. Then I look back and see that M is falling asleep too. WT??? That's new. But in we go, baby in the mei tai, G in the stroller because he "can't walk." Halfway through the mei tai I look at M, who has been complaining about being cold (he's always complaining, it's not as if I actually listen to the child anymore) and lo and behold, the child is turning blue! So I buy him some tea, we purchase our lunch, and out the door again.
The dinosaurs were fun, the turbine hall is a blast as usual. The boys got some time playing in the ball room where you invent ways to get the balls into baskets and tubes and whatnot. We finish up most of the fun stuff, and M runs out of steam. Oh, yay. He's got a fever, chills and a headache.
I manage to get everyone home, M into the bathtub for a hot bath, and E and G on the purple pillow. Then I made dinner.
My amazing husband, however went shopping at Costco, picked up our milk, AND picked up the Azure order! Wow. Then he helped with dinner and kids while I put M to bed.
I'm tired and want to go to bed too, now. What a day.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Oh no!

First oil. Then wheat (who cares around here?) Then rice. I can take it. We can adapt. We can get through.
But my CHOCOLATE??!?!?!??!! One shudders at the thought. Do they know how I get through a typical week?
Still, I guess it's cheaper than pharmaceuticals when all is said and done. But if I suddenly express a desire to move to a tropical climate with room for a cocoa plantation, know that it is not just for the weather.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Back to the gates

G has been developing his story-telling skills lately. He'll grab a toy and make up a nice complicated (and impossible to follow) story to go with it, while he acts it out. Loosely. It's pretty cute. He also requests things in riddles. For example, this morning he wanted something flat.
"I want something flat"
"Like what, Babe?"
"Something flat with honey on it."
"What do you want that is flat with honey on it."
"Something flat"
"Use your words to NAME what you are talking about please"
"Something flat."

Eventually it came out that he wanted a pancake. Which I kinda guessed. I just would really like him to get in the habit of making his request instead of spending 30 minutes playing a guessing game.

Anyway. Back to my point. He makes up cool stories and shares them. And lots of the details are in code. So one evening he was telling me about playing in the back yard with ES and GS, our neighbors. He went on and on about digging in the mud and playing on his bike and checking the garden. Then he I realized he was talking about the moon and it being dark and quiet and Mommy and Daddy were asleep. My mommy radar started going off.
"Did you play outside at night"
"Uh, huh."
"All alone?"
"Yes! All by myself!"
"You do know you have to stay in your bed, and especially in our house. You can't go outside unless Mommy or Daddy is awake and KNOWS you are outside."
"OK Mommy."

I may have belabored the point a bit as we were getting into bed. But I let it go. I think it was Friday morning that I got up and started seeing mud clods all over the floor. They made a trail to each door and through the living room and kitchen. I knew C had stayed up with his cough and just figured he'd gone for a walk or something. Weird, I know. But I vacuumed it all up and went about the morning. When C got up, I asked him about it. He looked at me like I was crazy. M insisted he didn't get up. That leaves G. Who has already told a convincing story about midnight adventures.
Granted, my neighborhood is quite safe. But let's just say I'm a little freaked out.
Suffice it to say the gate at the top of the stairs is closed when Mom and Dad head to bed from here on out. When he learns to open it, well, I'll think of something else.
Parenting is SUCH an adventure.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The sickies

I started it. I admit it. I picked up some awful virus in Idaho. I hacked, I coughed, my ears felt sooo tender and swollen, my tonsils got patriotic. I felt crummy. I managed to get home with the three kids without succumbing to the urge to just pull over and go to sleep for a week. Not that I could have, of course. 3 kids will keep you motivated--they should be personal trainers.
After about a week or so of suffering, I started to feel better and C started croaking around. He felt horrid for a week or so--actually he is still not 100%. Coughing up a lung would be his description of the illness.
So then, G's turn. He woke up one morning asking for a kleenex. I won't tell you what I saw through my bleary eyes. Only the mom's reading this could possibly (and I mean possibly) handle it.
He has done much better than us "growed-dups", and seems to be on the mend now.
Enter E. Poor kid. He was rubbing at his nose for a day or two, but he is seriously sensitive about any suggestion of anything in his poor nose. Probably due to this. So since he is cutting tooth #4 too, I didn't pay it much attention. Then there was the diaper. Won't describe that either. You're welcome. Then I noticed he was getting warm. Uh oh. By evening, he was throwing up and burning up.
Last night was entirely unpleasant. He wasn't throwing up anymore, but obviously very, very uncomfortable. And very, very hot. I didn't take his temp, but he had that scalding hot feeling. We didn't sleep much, and he couldn't stand it if I thought about putting him down or rolling away from him.
Fortunately, the fever seemed to break around 5 and I got a couple of hours of sleep. He is back to walking around the living room and growling at his brothers. But he doesn't seem as energetic as usual. That will probably come soon.
Hopefully this will skip M and we can stay healthy for awhile!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Family on wheels

Awhile back, G asked C to take off his training wheels. Turns out he wasn't entirely ready, but he wanted to try. We had fun with the trying.


"Don't let go, Mom!"
He just can't get going fast enough to keep himself balanced. At least not without the training wheels. See, he is a cautious child.

The surprise came when M tried out the bike. Guess who can ride a 2 wheeler after all? Seems all that scooter riding taught him some balance. He hasn't been back on, and that could be a simple comfort issue, I mean, just look:

So then Mom and Dad had to get in on the act. I rode the scooter and C rode the bike--and we switched part way through. But first we had to play "chicken." This was the end result of that daring game. Ewww!

I have so many more things I really should blog about. I just don't know where to start. What do you want to hear about, or see pictures of? We'll see what I can do. Keeping in mind that this post is dedicated to the auto save feature on blogger. E turned off the computer in the middle of my typing.

Friday, August 15, 2008

The New Me

Ta Da!


It feels so amazingly different. I actually have a little bit of headache because of the sudden change in weight load on my neck. Of course, having just come from a salon, it also feels a bit stiff. They do like their products you know. I really liked the stylist. She's the first one I've liked in many many years. So that feels good too.
Oh, and since it's likely to get to 103F today, I should especially like it.


M has fun with the camera. And I like it cuz it makes me look tall!

The leftovers. I had it cut into smaller sections. We'll see what kind of response I get. I think they are around 22" but I'll have to measure.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Hair for sale

I posted my listing on The Hair Trader today. It's had 49 views so far, so my fingers are crossed. You can see it here.
People have asked why I'm not donating it. The reason is, I did that last time (about 5 years ago) and I never heard back from them. Not horrible, but I wondered. Then I found out that the charity I sent it to, you know the one, I'm sure, only keeps about 10% of the hair they receive. The rest they sell. Most of the $ they make is used for "administrative costs". Just what I've heard. If someone knows more positive info and can verify it, please let me know.
But by selling my hair, I can make $ and apply it to, I dunno, gas or something. I'll also tithe on it, so some of the money goes to the church, and maybe I'll specify the money be used for humanitarian aide. Then I'll buy some chocolate to share with my honey.
My hair appt is on Friday. So, I will hopefully have pictures by the weekend.
So, thoughts? Is it weird to sell my hair? Any ideas for a cute, very short cut? What would you do with 21" of hair? Tell me.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A few more pictures

I was going to do this post right after the other one. I got sidetracked I guess. Anyway, here's the two old men. They look good, no?Mason and Ria. A much better picture of Ria. See, she has a great smile.

My little climber. He walks, he climbs, he wreaks havoc. All good talents to have when you are the youngest brother. He has also figured out how to crawl across the back of the couch. Seriously, he starts on the couch cushion, then steps up on the arm, then onto the back of the couch. He then crawls along the back of the couch. He has also learned that when mom comes at you, telling you to stop, she might make actually stop doing what you want to do. Therefore, crawling like you mean it is in order. That kid can move!

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Where's I's Been and What I's Been Doin'

First, the honest truth. I apparently neglect my son until he keels over from exhaustion. More likely, he runs on fumes until he crashes. Those of you who have spent time with him can probably attest to this fact. I can't really remember exactly when I took this. Day? Evening? But it is cute. And, no I don't always send him off on his own with a bottle. Sometimes he grabs the bottle, squiggles off my lap and takes off on his own. He is going to be extremely independent!
So, our trip to Idaho. The first day there, Mom, Ria and I took my 2 youngest and headed to Boise. We shopped and shopped, ate and shopped some more. It was great. Mom bought more fabric and trims. Watch her shop for new items! They are gonna be great! For lunch, Mom insisted we eat at Donnie Mac's Trailer Park Cuisine or Roadside Cuisine (depending on where you look). Ria and I gave each other significant looks if you know what I mean. I mean, we're adventurous and all. Especially Ria. But might this be going a bit too far? Obviously, when in Rome, but not ALL of Idaho is a trailer park. Really. Go visit. But she talked us into it. It turned out to be a blast and really, really, good food. The only complaint I have is about the booth we were in. The booths are made of old bench seats. On wheels. They have locks, but not very good ones. With a 3 year old who likes to hop in and out of his seat, say 598,436 times per meal, that bench was mobile! His highlight was getting to sit next to the car up on pillars. And the very sweet 20-something women who sat in it and happily played his flirting game. After our meal, we climbed up in the car to have a look around.

Since PapaCoyote has taken up mushroom hunting, he has found some yummy morels. Our treat Friday night was Dutch oven chicken with morel mushrooms. Delish. The chore afterwards was to get all the chicken off the bones. Ria was good at this. Here is, from l-r, Ria, my momma, and H, my sweet sister-in-law. And baby Hattie Mabel who is due to introduce herself sometime in October. No, Hattie Mabel isn't her real name, it's just the nickname my mom has given her.
PapaCoyote enjoys some serious playtime with the little ones. That's E trying to climb the dollhouse, L, my niece and G is scootching under Papa. Who knows why.
Me and Ria. I first met Mason and Ria when they lived here for a year while Mason was on a Fullbright Teacher Exchange. He co-taught with my dad. They really hit it off and became great friends. When I graduated from high school, they invited to me come and stay with them. I spent about 2 months living with them. I have wonderful memories of Holland and the surrounding areas. We went on a camping trip through S. France and I spent a few days train riding with their 2 boys and a friend of theirs. They were fantastic hosts and spoiled me completely. I only wish that their main memories of me weren't of my selfish, 18 year old phase. Oh well. They seem to like me still in spite of it all. Since Ria has 2 boys and no girls, she joked that I was her temporary daughter. Works for me. She is a sweet woman and has a quick sense of humor. I hope that someday I can take my family to Holland to visit them! I just realized that Ria isn't smiling in this picture. If someone has another version of it, send it along! Ria has a great smile and I would hate for her to get mad at me.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

We did it, mostly

The kids handled it fairly well. There was the bit at the library about no point in checking out videos. I get ahead of myself.
Sunday, we finished up any must-dos on the computer and then turned it off. G really didn't understand why, or that it being off meant you can't use it. Sunday night I realized that I was babysitting 2 other kids Monday and Tuesday and that I might regret the lack of movies. Bad sitter, I know.
So on Tuesday, when we all (me and 5 kids!) went to the library, I went ahead and caved on the movies. They got 2 DVDs and we watched them on the portable DVD player. Then there was the whole, "We watched the yesterday" bit. But I was strong.
On Tuesday, I was talking to my mom and she mentioned that our friends from Holland were coming for a visit. I hadn't seen them in about 5 years, so really wanted to visit them. What with my whole internet addiction withdrawl, I packed up stuff and kids and headed to Idaho by myself on Thursday. I brought some sanity into the mix by a)packing movies and said portable DVD player, b) putting all 3 kids in one seat so there was no odd man out and someone with hands by the baby at all times, and c)I caved on my no Gerber baby food rule and bought Gerber fruit leather, Gerber cereal-thingies and some other stuff he wouldn't touch. But he loves him some fruit leather!
We survived the trip to Papa and Grandma Coyote's in a mere 7.5 hours. Go RasJane!! C joined us on Friday, and just left to go home this morning. He's a sweetie! But we had lots of fun with our friends and I'll post pictures when I get home and get them all organized. That's right, I'm still here. It's really a nice break for me to be here. I dump most of the responsibility on my parents and do things like take a nap or go shopping with mom. It's great. And she's a great cook.
For more insanity--or clearer thinking, we'll see. I've made a firm decision to cut my hair all off. I have to find a salon in PDX I trust with my hair (any recommends??) and then off it goes. I'm tired of the baby always being in it, of cleaning it out of the drain, vacuuming it up, and on and on and on. Besides, hair grows back. I'll post before and after pics, 'k?
A final note (I hear my baby calling for me), PapaCoyote doesn't have Firefox. That means no real-time spell check. Apologies and deal with it. Hearts.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Buh Bye

I'm trying an experiment. Perhaps an insane one, we'll see.
We are unplugging the computer for 1 week. No movies, no net, no games. We will even have to hand-write lists. Egads!
But, it's time to try it. Weaning isn't working, so we must do cold-turkey.
We should be back Aug 4th. Till then, ta ta.

If you need, need, need to contact me, call me. I'm listed. But then, most all of you have my number anyway who would really, really need to call me.

I should have a pretty interesting post about our week's adventures, eh?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Recipe for a mad baby

  • 1 tired baby who won't go to sleep
  • 1 wrap
  • 1 dishwasher

Attempt to nurse baby to sleep several times. Decide to put baby in wrap since that is pretty sure-fire. Go on with the chores that need done, as per usual baby-in-wrap-routine.
Open dishwasher. Wait for screams of baby who figures out the coveted appliance is open, but he can no more get into it than touch the moon.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Give a kid a camera

When we bought the new digital camera, we decided to let the kids use the old one. It has indeed been interesting to see what they take pictures of. Side note: if you are wondering what to get the kids for a gift that will be much appreciated, I have a suggestion--AA batteries!
So, one thing I have noticed, is that they seem to be fascinated with feet. Especially G. Of course, we've always kinda known that about him. Shoes, toes, feet. He's been all over these things since he could crawl. Here's photographic proof. I have not edited or cropped the pictures in any way. This is just how they came out of the camera.




The weekend

My little hikers. Awww. And this time, G carried his own pack, all the way!The photographer and sons. C bought himself his camera finally. It is a Nikon D40. Sweet pictures. He is really good. And the camera, of course, helps.
This is the way we pack the baby, pack the baby, pack the baby. He is getting so huge. And he puts off a ton of heat when he sleeps. Whew! That brown thing hanging down next to him is his favorite toy--the end of my braid.
After the big boys went to bed, the little one helped me in the kitchen. First he removed all the extraneous stuff from the cupboard:
Then he looked to see if there were any treasures inside. Most everything hit the reject pile. He wasn't very impressed when mom declared it bedtime and undid all his hard work!

The weather cooled down just a bit into the 80's so we took another hike. This time to Forest Park in West Portland. Portlanders are extremely proud of Forest Park and rightly so. It is beautiful. You can hike for days and be on a different trail each day. Although technically you aren't supposed to camp in the park. But seriously, who would know?
Anyway, we took a short loop on Aspen Rd to Wild Cherry trail, to Wildwood trail and back to Aspen via Savier Rd. Road, avenue, street, I dunno. Close enough. It was beautiful. From Savier you can look out over Portland. It is some view. Would be better without all the haze from fires, so we'll have to go back when the air clears a bit.
I must say that I am getting mighty out of shape. I was exhausted from an easy 2.8 mile hike! Not good. I need to get out walking again. No wonder my pants are getting tighter. But enough about that.
The kids seemed to have fun. There were moments of whining of course. They wanted to take the shortcut back to the car at one point. But I told them that if they finished to loop we'd go to Old Wives Tales for dinner. That did the trick. They finished the loop just fine of course. So did I am proud to say.
Today M is off to scout camp. He goes early each morning to hitch a ride and have fun all day. Tomorrow, I'm doing my duty and volunteering to drive up and follow the boys around for the day. I have to be ready to go at 7:45. That should be some feat, as I'm usually just rolling out of bed about then. But I did manage to get breakfast made and M to the church to meet the rides at 7:30 this morning. Go me! Let's see if I can do it all week. I'll have to think of a reward for me if I manage that. Maybe a date with my cute husband.