Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Thursdays Thoughts

Just random, unorganized thoughts.

-During Greta's afternoon nap (which she still takes on me, ugg) I do research on the laptop. I've been selecting different subjects every week...last week it was chick rearing and this week it's gardening. I'm totally pumped about both subjects but gardening has got me excited this week. I've been looking into Square Foot Gardening and like the idea. Basically it's where you divide your garden up into (usually) 8 X 8 foot squares. Each square foot within the square has its own plant (so 64 plants). One crop per 8X8 square. Supposedly the crop yields are higher and the work put into it is less than traditional row crops. Still deciding what to do but I'm intrigued.

-I can't believe Easter is this Sunday! It sure came crept up on me this year although I'm happy to say I'm actually prepared. I have a new basket for Wesley with goodies to go in it and I'm even prepared to dye eggs. I think this year will be the first year Wesley will actually be excited about Easter. He's become a connoisseur of candy since last year and seems ubber excited at the concept of eggs with candy in them. Looking forward to Sunday!

-It seems that the six month mark is the magic time when babies (at least MY baby) get easy. Life is returning to normal, routines are set, Mommy is routinely in a good mood. Greta is still sleeping through the night like a champ. I'm not really sure what contributed to this wonderful phenomenon but I'm running with it. Around the six month mark she got a night light in her room, started solid food and I started a fish oil regiment. You might ask why that last thing is included in the possible links with sleeping through the night? It's believed that breastfed babies that receive a good amount of DHA and omega 3 fatty acids from Moms milk are happy babies that sleep better. Is this all fluff? Maybe, but I'm taking 3,000 mg of fish oil a day to find out! So far so good. Plus, the stuff is just plain good for you anyways.

-Good old Mid Western weather is blasting us with beautiful Spring weather. In true fashion, we have near blizzard conditions one weekend and 85 degree weather the next. Everything is greening up nicely and the seasonal allergies are in full bloom. I always know to prepare for the congestion whenever I seen the bright yellow forsythia bushes blooming. They are everywhere right now. Beautiful but miserable.

That's all that is in my head right now.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Check

We sat down this weekend and looked over our giant "to do" list. It's a big one! We're hoping to mark a few things off every weekend and this weekend was the first (of many).

Our town had a hazardous waste disposal day yesterday so we loaded up anything and everything we could find out in the shop. There was six years of old motor oil, tons of used anti freeze, old diesel fuel and several car batteries. All of it nearly filled the bed of the truck. We had no idea we had so much of that stuff lying around. The town set it up like a drive through were people just lined up and workers swarmed the cars to take the waste. I'm so glad to be rid of all of that. One thing to check off the list!

From there I went directly to the rock quarry, that's a few miles from us, to load up the back of the truck with dirt. We've needed to put dirt around the foundation of our house to correct the grade ever since we had foundation work done several years ago. We used to buy bags of fill dirt but that is expensive and time consuming so I bit the bullet and went to the quarry. They loaded 1500 pounds of dirt in the back if the truck and it cost me a whopping $6. We'll need about three more loads so I plan to go back every Saturday until it's done. Another thing almost completed.



Daddy let him drive back to the shop, he loved it!



Then today Sean got the rototiller on the back of the garden tractor working and we went out and marked out where we want to place the garden. Then he got to work rototilling a 30 foot by 30 foot area. I can't wait to get things planted!



Overall it was a very productive weekend and we got a few things checked off the list. Hope you all had a good weekend!



Juice Box Boy

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Year of the Chicken

I've wanted chickens ever since we moved out to the country, so we're going on six years now. This is the year, yea! I went in this morning and ordered my chicks and they'll be in on May 7th. I see a sign on the door of the feed store every year around this time about ordering chicks. They take orders for a couple of months and then fill the orders with chicks from a catalog hatchery. This benefits me because you have to order at least 25 chicks from the mail order hatcheries. I don't want 25 chickens, I want six. I'm so excited! I ended up deciding on two different breeds, the Araucana and the Silver Laced Wyandotte. The Araucana is special because it lays green and blue eggs. They are nicknamed the "Easter Egger". I just think that's cool. The other breed is the Silver Laced Wyandotte. They are excellent layers, lay brown eggs, resistant to really cold winters and just beautiful birds (picture to the right). I'm so excited to have fresh eggs every day. Have you ever had farm fresh eggs? The yolks are a deep rich orange and they taste so much better. I believe they are better for you as well. The research I've been looking at says to keep two hens for every person eating eggs. We'll see if six hens can keep us in enough eggs, we eat a lot of eggs!

We're going to keep the chicks in a pen with a heat lamp out in the shop until they are old enough for the coop. I've been telling Wesley we're going to get chicks and he seems pretty excited. I don't think he's ever seen a chick so I doubt he has a clue what is coming so it will be interesting.

I was debating where to put the chicken coop and finally decided on placing it in the horse pen. I had chickens growing up (along with ducks and pigeons) and lost a few of them to predators over the years. It's pretty traumatizing as a kid to loose a tame pet to a skunk or possum. I don't want my kids to have to witness that. So, with that being said, I want to place the coop in a location where the chance of a predator eating the chickens will be slim. In the horse pen is a good place. The horses are pretty aware of everything that goes on around them and I think they'd chase off anything that got in their pen (have you ever seen an angry miniature horse before?). Here's hoping anyways.

I told Sean I wanted to get chicks and he gave me "that look" and said "what do you want me to build." :) He's such an understanding husband.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Emery's Baptism

We planned to have a family road trip to Kansas City this past weekend to witness the baptism of my little nephew Emery but the weather had different plans. It was 65 degrees the entire week preceding the baptism and then we get notice of a spring blizzard headed right for us the evening before we were to leave. Grrr. My folks decided to go up early to try and outrun the storm and said I was welcome to hitch a ride with them. I jumped at the idea and rode to KC with Greta in the back seat of their Jeep. We made it there in one piece but were, literally, about 20 minutes ahead of the sleet and snow. It was one cold, snow packed weekend. After it was all said and done they got around 8 inches of snow in less than 24 hours. Crazy.

Thankfully little Emery was able to be baptized as we were afraid the church would be canceled. It was a nice service and Emery was a champ. He's such a laid back baby. I wish I could say the same for Greta but she did ok, not getting fussy until the sermon. She and I then walked the halls of the church. Luckily they did the baptism first so I was able to see it. Congratulations Emery!

The pastor, Emery, Blake and Betsy




It was great being able to hang out with my family and my sister's in-laws. They were a great group of people and always happy to help out when I needed a break from baby duty. This was Greta's first trip away from home. In fact it was her first car trip. She did really well, only getting angry the last 20 minutes or so. Our little trooper.

Wesley was disappointed he wasn't able to come with us but I think he had a nice "man" weekend with his Dad. They bundled up and ventured out into the near blizzard conditions to play in the snow. Pretty crazy if you ask me but Wes had a fun time and still tells me about it nearly three days later. Here's hoping it is the first and last of the spring snow. He's really looking forward to seeing "BabyEmery" (pronounced as all one word) for Easter. Thanks for an enjoyable weekend guys!

The babes: Greta at 6 months and Emery at 4.5 months.


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bubble Boy

Wesley's thoughts: Alright, I'm sitting next to her are you happy now?



Wait a second, I think she's starting to lean....



Yes, Sissy is definitely leaning. Arggg I think she touched me! I'm outta here!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Month Six


Our little girl turned six months old yesterday. Where does the time go? Six more months and we'll be celebrating a birthday, hard to believe! She sure has blossomed this past month.

-I love her little shy smile.

-She's started grabbing your face when being held. Always has her little hands feeling your nose or cheeks. She likes to rub her hand on Sean's cheek when he needs a shave (which is always!).

-She's started reaching out to me when I go to take her from someone. It sure makes me feel good when she wants just Momma.

-Still only seems to want Momma. The Mommy Complex is strong in this one.

-Enjoys eating solids. She's been eating sweet potatoes for about a week now and started carrots this evening. A little bit more is making it down her throat every day.

-This is big: She's started sleeping through the night! Oh glory hallelujah! Mind you it's only been a week now but I'll take it! Sean suggested that maybe she just needed a night light in her room, so I put one in and magically she started sleeping through the night that very night. Coincidence? I think not. Poor thing was just scared of the dark.

-I actually miss her at night now that she sleeps much better. It's strange not seeing her every couple of hours.

-She is really starting to enjoy her big brother. She always seems to have an eye on him, and will strain to find him. He always brings out a big smile in her. It's been the first month that they've started interacting...which is awesome to watch.

-We are so grateful for her. She lightens my day and makes me smile when I'm blue.


Saturday, March 20, 2010

Personal Picks



Driveway Alert System

I love this thing! Sean picked one up from the local Harbor Freight store for a whopping $15. We mounted it to one of the maples on the driveway and when someone drives in or out it has a receiver that dings in the house. It's wonderful since we don't have many windows along the front of the house to see when someone is here. It's also nice to not get caught off guard when you have an unexpected visitor. Wesley always knows when Daddy gets home now and runs through the house yelling "Daddy's home! Daddy's home!". Great little invention.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Stray Magnet

I'm literally a magnet for stray animals. Tuesday morning I noticed two little pups hanging around our property. I didn't think much of it as we see many loose dogs around here. That evening they were still hanging around and were now tormenting the horses so I went out there to investigate. There yipping madly at Rocky were two little fluffy Australian Shepherd puppies. Just adorable little things. A red merle and a black tri. I couldn't just let them stay there so I took them, fed them and locked them up in the chain link dog kennel. Not knowing what to do next I started calling places. The neighbors, the local vet clinic (turns out you have to be in city limits for them to take strays), the Humane Society (costs $25 a dog to drop off out of county strays), then the city hall to see if anyone was missing two pups (nobody was). I figured they were drop offs. That's one of the "joys" of living in the country is dealing with other peoples unwanted animals.

I posted a lost and found ad on Craigslist but nobody seems to be missing these pups. Hard to believe since they look purebred. Since I'm just about at my wits end with our current animals I knew they needed to go so I posted an ad on Craigslist. A nice young couple came out and adopted the red merle pup this afternoon and I think I have a guy coming out to take the tri-colored one tomorrow. It's been an ordeal but I just hope they are going to have good homes.

Cute little things

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sanity

I was just looking at some pictures that someone posted on Facebook. She's one of my friends on Facebook although I haven't seen her since high school. She just had her fourth child. Two boys, two girls. By the looks of it all of them are under five years old. I sit here and ponder her sanity. She's either super woman or the most tired girl on the face of the planet. Maybe both.

I don't know how she does it. I have two children and can hardly make it through the day with my sanity (this is currently under debate in our house). I'm the kind of person that likes to make lists and accomplish things on that list. I haven't accomplished anything since Greta was born. My entire goal for this weekend was to vacuum the house. Failed that goal.

You have one kid and you think that by having another kid it will be twice as much work. But it isn't. It's like eight times more work than one kid. Very strange I tell you.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Life

I think this is the longest I've gone without blogging. I'm just exhausted. All the time. I never understood when people would say how children give you gray hair, but I'm starting to get it now. I feel like I've aged ten years since Wesley was born. It's hard for me to fathom that I've only been a parent for two and a half years. Two and a half, that's it! I can't even remember my life before children. Twenty eight years I don't recall, but the last two seem to be a lifetime. Funny how that works.

I've been keeping super busy these days with every day things. A woman's work is never done right? Sean is outside right now building a dog house for the two big dogs. It will be nice for them to have a place to get out of the spring rains which seem to have already started. It will also come in handy when we need to take a weekend trip and can't bring them inside at night like we do every evening. I'll take some pictures of it when he's done, I'm sure he'll do a smashing job.

Wesley has been keeping me on my toes this week. Naps seems to be still happening off and on which is wonderful for me. Regardless of whether he naps or not he spends an hour in his room every afternoon. He seems to look forward to it. He's also doing a great job in the potty training department. He'll go in his little potty about three times a day. He loves getting some M&M's as a reward. We're going through M&M's at decent pace, especially with me raiding it every so often. Darn delicious candy.

Greta is still having quite the Mommy complex. After dinner I plunk her in Sean's arms so I can do dishes...she lasts about a minute before realizing she's not in my arms and starts screaming. When I say "screaming" I mean a full on melt your ear drums kind of scream. I kid that there is no "middle earth" with her temper. She's either calm and happy or full on scary screaming. Oh well, I'm just hoping this phase ends soon because I'm pretty much stuck with her 24/7 during it. She's happy as a clam as long as I'm with her. *sigh*

Greta is taking to baby food like a champ. Opens her little mouth when she see's that spoon heading her way. Starting to get more down her throat than on her bib too. I purchased some organic sweet potato baby food for next week, can't wait to try something with flavor! Fun times.

That's about all that's happening in our household. Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Mamma's Girl



If you were to look up the definition of a Momma's Girl in the dictionary you'd see a little picture of Greta. She and I are attached at the hip. She cries if I'm not within her field of vision. She cries if Sean holds her for more than 5 minutes. You could say she's really attached to me. Most of the time literally.

Nights have reverted once again. She can't go any more than 3 hours without waking up. Sometimes it's two hours. She seems to not be able to get herself back to sleep once she wakes up. We've tried the Cry It Out method a few times but I just don't feel either of us are ready for it. She's still so young and it just breaks my heart to hear her just sobbing in there by herself. We'll revisit that idea in a later month. So for now I just have to tell myself that this phase will pass and soon she'll be a little toddler running around, so just enjoy the quiet time I get to spend with her several times in the wee hours of the night.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Weekend

You can tell that spring is on its way in. Yea! We have had some beautiful warm weather (60+ degrees) and we've been outside all weekend enjoying it. With the warm weather comes the inevitable list of outdoor jobs that need to be accomplished. We just walked around talking about all the things that need to be tackled this spring. Golly it's a long list. One of the things on that list is to clean out the horse pen. We try and scoop the poo out every once in a while and it was definitely time. It's hard to keep it scooped out in the winter due to it always being muddy or icy or covered in snow but we've had several weeks of dry warm(ish) weather so Sean was able to get the little garden tractor out with the front blade on it and push the poo into a pile. The plan is to start a nice little compost pile that can be used for the garden this spring. He did a splendid job of cleaning the piles of poo and I'm sure the horses appreciate it. Not bad for a 42 year old tractor!




Wesley helps out whenever he can outside. He's always our little shadow wanting to hold bolts or help fill up the water containers for the animals.



Over Valentines Day weekend last month my folks brought us dinner of snow crab legs and thus it's started a new tradition in our house. I was at the grocery store yesterday and noticed at the seafood counter that the snow crab legs were on sale ($3.99 a pound!) so I bought three pounds as a treat. Got home, popped them into a pot of boiling water to heat them up and we gorged ourselves. Wesley got to try his first (and definitly not his last) dinner of snow crab. I wasn't sure if he'd like them or not but he surprised us by downing about half a pound. He dipped the chunks in melted butter and asked for more. It was awesome. I'm glad the kid likes the same food we like. Sure makes it easy.



On a side note, I am so proud of our little boy. He pooped on the potty for the first time today. I know, probably over sharing but I'm so excited at the prospect of getting one child potty trained. He said he had to pee pee on the potty so I took him in and he sat there for a good long while, got a big smile on his face and declared that he pee peed. Got up, looked down and was just shocked beyond belief at what was in his little potty. I don't think he had a clue that he pooed. It was a surprise for both of us. Yea Wesley!

Anyways, hope everyone had a nice weekend!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Bring on the spoon


Miss Greta was served her first solid food this evening. It was time. She watches every bite I place in my mouth at dinner time and won't let my fork out of her sight. She sucked down her watery rice cereal like a champ and thus starts her love affair with real food.



Thursday, March 4, 2010

Captions

I sure love these little kids. Wesley's a happy boy when his pals Alex and Abby are over. He pee peed on the potty three times today. This is how it goes: Alex says "I have to go potty". Abby then immediately goes "Me go potty TOO?!". Then Wesley (20 minutes later) goes "I'm gonna pee pee on the potty". It's like it's peer pressure potty training. Hey, whatever works!



A good picture of Jessica and Greta. Jessica has helped me out oodles with the transition from one kid to two, if not for her I'm afraid I might have yanked all my hair out and had a permanent twitch by now. She routinely gets Greta plunked in her lap when she's over at our house....as evident by this picture.



A perfect picture of our lives right now. Sean has that "I haven't gotten a solid nights sleep in five months" look to him. Wesley has that devious look in his eye plotting what he can leap off of next. Miss Greta sits there all innocent while secretly deciding how many times she'll get up during the night tonight.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Sleeping Powder Anyone?

Lord help me. Wesley has decided that his daily nap is now optional. I've been dreading this day for awhile. It seems that around 2.5 years old is when I hear of a lot of little kids giving up their naps and I hoped and hoped that mine wouldn't be one of them.

Wesley needs a daily nap. I need him to take a nap, for my sanity. And last of all, Greta needs a nice quiet house for her nap. But he just won't go to sleep.

I'm selfish enough to admit that I need some sort of break from the kids during the day. I just don't know what to do if Wesley permanently gives up his nap. I'm afraid I might go coo coo. Sean will come home one day to find me curled up in fetal position whistling show tunes.

So for now, Wesley will be having an hour of "quiet time" in his room. If he chooses to sleep that would be best but otherwise it will be a much needed break for all of us. Wish us luck!