Monday, June 30, 2008

Busy kids

Every kid has to learn to wave with their own style. E has his. He cocks his head, pulls up his shoulder, grins from ear to ear and bends at the wrist. Down, and maybe up. When up , he splays all his pudgy fingers out in the cutest wave every displayed. See? Cute!
Kids copy mom. Mom is always wearing E, so G has to do it too. It took him awhile to decide to babywear. A couple of days ago, he brought his doll to me and said it was sad. He said, "he just needs me." Aww. Then he asked if he could wrap the baby. I happened to have a wrap I had made back when E was born, for G. It was a little small, but we managed to tie it in a good sling-tie, and that seemed to be just what his baby wanted. It was so cute to watch him pat his baby while going about his tasks.

He has 2 teeth so far, and goes off and on displaying signs of getting more. I have seen lots of people using the amber necklaces, but wasn't sure if it was worth it. So I asked another mom at our parkdays and she said she just loves it. So I bought one from Three Sisters Toys. It came really fast. I was worried that E would pull at it, but he doesn't seem to notice it's presence. And he looks good in it! Of course, this should increase the number of "cute girl" comments I get now. Ah well. He is a pretty baby.

M will be heading home on Thursday. It will go fast I'm sure. I haven't been very productive, but I haven't had the M entertainment factor either. Check out PapaCoyote's blog for updates on the adventures of M.
(If you're reading this to M, PapaCoyote, please stop now--Spoiler ahead!) I'm a little worried about him coming home with not nearly as much excitement as he's grown accustomed to in Idaho, but I have a plan. I read a comment, an aside in a comment really, about the Hogwarts Summer Correspondence School. Its a summer course for kids that looks like a lot of fun. Don't tell M! It's a surprise. But he should have his invitation letter from Dumbledore by the time he gets home on Thursday. That will give us two weeks. I guess if he really likes it, we could continue it. I think I have the really hard work done. I'll post pictures of my efforts in a week or so. Maybe sooner.

Oh, and I'm reading the book, The Revolution Will Not be Microwaved by Sandor Katz. It's good. I'm enjoying it. Yup, another book about food. This one has a bit of different slant. Good read all in all. I want to read his Wild Fermentation book too. Hopefully this year I can get pickles to turn out. I made saurkraut awhile ago and it turned out well. Need to make more of that too. Brother, are you interested in some fresh, real 'kraut?

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

It's kinda quiet

M has flown the coop for a week again this summer. PapaCoyote gets a victim for his tricks. Lucky him! MamaCoyote gets to spoil someone (besides Papa) for a week.
We get a change up in the environment. Without M we have switched to a younger focus. G gets to be the big kid around and is mostly loving it. He is rather offended that M left. I don't think it is so much that M left, but where he went. Although I do think he misses his playmate. He has spent a lot of time with the neighbor kids. He also seems a bit more aware of E.
It does seem a lot different around. The dynamic has changed. This should be a good break for all of us.
Yesterday, we rented Happy Feet and got Burgerville french fries. G's favorites. Today we'll be going to the homeschool park days to hang out with lots of friends. Not sure about tomorrow. Friday, C has the day off work, so we'll surely find something fun to do then. I'm hoping to get some knitting in. I took on my usual plethora of summer projects. A sweater for me, socks for me, 2 skeins of sock yarn to dye for TBD recipients, and a new wool soaker for E.
Yeah, I shouldn't get too bored.

Time to head to the park!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Fresh Milk

I'll just begin by saying oops. I forgot to take the camera. I forgot to ask the farm owners if I could talk about them. This will be general until next time.

So, last time we were at M's dr appt, I mentioned that I couldn't find a place that had goat milk and was accepting new customers. He gave me the number of a place just a few miles away. I called and, yes, I could go and pick up fresh milk that very day. Hooray!!
So we drove out to get our yummy fresh milk. The people were so nice and friendly--as people who produce food lovingly for others tend to be. And, they let the boys come into the barn and meet the goats, chickens and cats. What a fun afternoon!
Being late spring/heading into summer, the kids are old enough to start weaning. They were very friendly and playful. The mama goats were also very friendly. The kids (mine) spent a lot of time getting to know the goats, and the people who work so hard to raise them in a humane and respectful way. They even offered to let M help milk if we get there at the right time sometime. Wow. Talk about transparency in your food supply!
This farm is not certified organic. It's better. I don't need to have a certification when I can go to the farm, see what the animals are fed, see how they are treated, where they live and see how the milk is collected.
When we got home, we sampled the milk. I had heard that goat milk when fresh is just as good as cow milk. I totally thought people were joking. All the milk, cheese and yogurt I've tasted tasts goaty. Not this. It is so yummy!
I am sooooooooooo happy we have a source now for fresh, real goat milk.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Backlog

I have gotten so very far behind on the blog. Apologies. I shall try to update you on our happenings.

First, Father's Day. The Primary (children's organization at church) had this great idea of making ties for the dads. The kids glued and glittered themselves silly a few Sundays before Dad's day. They even decorated some old ties! Dutifully, they kept the secret. On Father's day, a few of their teachers handed out ziploc bags with ties inside to each dad. They even had lots of extras so some special men at church didn't get left out. The men were asked to change out the tie they put on that morning for the new improved one. Here is C wearing his creation. You can't see too well from the picture, but it has lots of sequins, rhinestones and pom poms. Buttons too I believe. Whaddya think?

Thanks to fuel prices, we are joining hoardes of fellow Americans in selling our pickup. It was nice to have (Thanks PaR!!), but it just doesn't make sense anymore to have 3 vehicles. Especially when one of them would cost over $100 to fill up. So. if you know of someone who needs a pickup in pretty good shape for a good price, let me know!


Baby news. My things go fast. First off, wherever we go, the first thing we hear is some derivative of "Look at that Hair!!" E has great 'fro and he wears it well. But what is under there? Cute eh?
So, the skills are blooming. Last post was about E trying to learn to stand. Here he is giving his adorable wave. He's got the wrist thing down! And really, would you even want to follow through on a goodbye to that face? Only the stoniest of hearts would I tell you.


Wednesday, I heard a noise upstairs and figured G was playing in the upstairs hall. I called out to see what he was into. He replied, but his voice came from the living room. Hmmm. I called to M. His voice also came from the living room. Double Hmmm. I run upstairs. There is E, all the way at the top, extremely proud of his accomplishment. I was cautious because I didn't want him to lunge toward me (more on that in a minute). but he calmly turned around and started climbing down the stairs. Wow. Seems all the time playing on the floor pillow has taught him how to get down off a ledge. Phew. I still put up the gate.

When M was learning to walk, he was very cautious. He spent months holding anyone's fingers while he walked around. He didn't actually let go and walk until 15 months. When he did, it was a pretty good walk and he rarely if ever fell down. He is still a very cautious child.
When G was learning to walk, he practiced standing and pulling up. He cruised. He cautiously let go and walked. He took little trips, falling gently. He is still amazingly good at risk assesment. Some people look at him and think he is a daredevil. Not so. He is very talented physically, and very good at deciding how much damage he is willing to sustain.
E is now in the learning to walk stage. I told my mom I think he has decided walking is for chumps and he'd rather fly. He has been practicing letting go and falling back down on the pillow. He pulls up and cruises. When he decides he doesn't want to cruise there, he turns away from his support, spreads his arms out and lunges. Really, just like a giant belly flop. He flies onto the floor and starts his funky crawl. I don't know how he doesn't hurt himself. I think he is going to be one of those kids who dives into things head first.

I will post more later. Currently I need to help a very obnoxious 9 year old. He didn't want to unload the dishwasher this morning. I am a cruel and unfair mom. I haven't been fair since the time I was born (direct quote from 9yo). So he pulled the drawer face off one of my cabinets. Yeah, no shopping trip for me today. We'll be staying home doing chores out the wazzoo to work off the drawer. Oh Joy! Maybe I should list him with the truck. Twofer.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Someone is practicing for something bigger

E has pretty much mastered the art of pulling himself up on things. He's been practicing cruising the furniture. And the walls. Next up, independent standing. He works on this by pushing himself off of things and falling back onto them. His favorite is the bean bag in the living room.

video


In other news, we are still waiting for spring. We tried going to park days yesterday and I nearly froze. Well, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but it was COLD! Definitely not June. I hope it really does warm up this weekend like I've heard it's supposed to.

Some people have asked how the food thing is going. Ugh. M hates the restrictions of his diet. I'm hating the restrictions in his diet. He can eat fruit in moderation, meat and vegetables. That's it. Really. Poor kid. He has supplements he is supposed to take but he hates them. For some reason, he just can't get the logic that if he takes them, he will be able to eat more foods. He just complains and "forgets" to take them. I contemplate giving up. I just keep telling myself it will be worth it eventually. Wish I could see that "eventually". Right now it seems I'm spending a fortune on feeding him. Not to mention the daily arguments over what he can eat given what is in the house. And what G can eat. And the rest of the family. Finding a balance between trying to not make it too hard on M to watch everyone eat his favorites, and just plain getting picky G to eat is like walking a tightrope.
I think my temper, and everyone's, is a bit shorter for it all. M has another appt on Wed and I will ask Dr. J what we can do to expand M's diet. He seems to think we can try eggs and raw dairy. I have to admit to being a bit nervous about that. M has had anaphylaxis type reactions to those in the past. But I'm trying not to show that to M at all. I know he has his own anxiety about them (paranoia?) that we have to overcome. I know I'm going to have to hide these foods in order to judge whether he reacts to them. Otherwise he'll give himself a physical panic reaction that looks exactly the same.

We seem to be adjusted to being home. Good thing, grandma comes again next week. M is already planning a months worth of activities. you'd think the kid never saw his grandparents. But we'll have fun.

My husband is the sweetest

Cuz he brought these home to me on Tuesday. What a nice guy. And it was totally "just because." Awwww

Monday, June 09, 2008

chicken pox

No, we don't have it. Sigh.

Many of you know that I'm not a big fan of vaccines. I'm not anti vax. I think they totally have their place. I just think that injecting every child with every major dead virus is supreme idiocy. The vaccine that I hate the most is the varicella vaccine. The makers of this vax would like you to believe that chicken pox is a horridly deadly disease.
Okay, who had chicken pox? Yeah, and you pulled through just fine huh? Probably got to miss school for a week if you were lucky too, right? I even had it about a year ago. I felt like I'd been hit by a truck, but it only lasted for a few days. I'm thrilled it wasn't a stomach bug!
Want to know how to protect your child from varicella? Make sure they get it as a child. Then make sure as you age, you are around kids with chicken pox. Seriously.
Here is a fantastic article on why we need chicken pox.
Oh, and DO NOT GIVE THEM TYLENOL!!!!!!! It will prevent the liver from coping with the disease. They absolutely HAVE to have the fever to process the disease too, so avoid the advil too, please. Giving these drugs has been shown to cause more complications from chicken pox than any thing else.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

My new washing machine



10 years ago, when we found out we were expecting M, we figured a washing machine would make like a whole lot easier. Given our student budget, I think we did very well in our Sears machine. It was tiny, but it served three people very well and survived several moves.
A few days before leaving for Idaho though, it started screaming at me. Literally. You could hear it through the whole house. I called the repair guy and he guessed at the problem over the phone and said it would be in the neighborhood of $150 to fix. Much cheaper than a new machine so I almost said yes. But after talking to C, we agreed that we had gotten our money out of the old one, and it was time to upgrade to something bigger.
We did some online research, I talked to my mom who recently bought a new machine, and we did some legwork in Boise. I decided on the GE Profile based on the recommendations of the salesguy at Jim's. The great thing is, that when we got home, I got a great deal.
I called a few places around the area, trying to stick with non-box places, but I did call Sears too, just for a reference. Walt's in Sherwood gave me the best deal. They normally carry the washer for $549, but had it on clearance for $499. Jim's quoted me $548 for a contractor price. To sweeten the deal, delivery and hauling of the old machine is only $50. And get this, when I asked when it would be delivered, the woman asked if between 1 & 4 would be okay. Today?? Yup, same day. So I had my new machine up and running by 3:30 that day. Good thing too! I had 4 big Rubbermaid roughtotes in the living room brimming with laundry. All that? 5 loads. Wahooo! I'm in love. And it's sooo quiet. Due to the extended spin cycle, the dryer gets done at just about the same time too.
Now for the real experiment---
M has decided that unloading the dishwasher is horrible and boring. Well, he decided that a loooong time ago, but I digress. I made up a list of the chores that have to be done. He picked laundry. No joke. We'll see how long it lasts. He did his and G's laundry yesterday. I don't think I really want him to do mine and his dad's. I can see that being a bit of a disaster. He of course refuses to have anything to do with washing diapers. Wimp.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

We're Baaack!

What a fun trip! We went to Idaho to meet up with Lanna and family at C's parents house. It was such a treat to see them. My boys enjoyed having full-time playmates, E enjoyed being held all the time. The adults enjoyed catching up. GramRe and Papa enjoyed having the whole family together.
No problems keeping busy. I can't even remember what all we did. The bad thing is that I hit a camera snag and didn't get pictures of everything. Hopefully I can harvest from everyone else. Please say yes?
Here's some of what I remember:
Birds of Prey, where we saw lots of cool birds and learned about the awesome birds of prey in Idaho and around the world.
Boondocks, where we completely wore out the kids (and big kids!) riding on go karts, playing putt-putt golf, riding on bumper boats, playing arcade games, riding the kid-size go karts, riding on the slicks. Whew, it was exhausting, but we had perfect weather that day for being outside all day.
Funny enough, the day after Boondocks, where we all got just enough sun to give us a "rosy" glow, was family picture day. Tyler from CPX photography did a great job. We can't wait to get our photos to hang on our walls. We had some great outdoor shots in grandma and grandpa's backyard and some indoor shots in the living room.
I think--and I'm a little fuzzy on this, but I think that the next day was the day the girls went shopping. We found oodles of delish yarn at Handmade in Eagle, ate food at Quiznos and Cold Stone, and found toys for Nyssa at the Children's Store. It was hard to decide what to get, but she made some decisions. I think Lanna headed out the next day or later that day for a new suitcase.
Oh, and we had dinner at Red Robin and headed over to Krispy Kreme for dessert. Then the boys headed to Cabella's for a true American Experience and a selection of the women went to Craft Warehouse for beads.
It seems we just ran and ran, but it was so much fun. It was hard to say goodbye. I really hope we can find a way to all get together again soon!