Back To Blogging

Posted in Everyday Life on November 8th, 2010 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

It seems like I haven’t had the time to blog as much as I’d like to lately.  Put it this way –  Halloween ended over a week ago now, and I still have a draft sitting here detailing how my family spent what’s probably our 2nd favorite holiday.  I think I will quickly summarize and get it churned out next, hopefully.

One thing that’s been taking up my blogging time is laundry.  When the seasons change, my laundry responsibilities increase from about 3 loads per week to 6 or 7.  That’s because my family of 6 is now wearing pants instead of shorts or sundresses, many of us dress in layers in the fall which adds sweatshirts to the mix, and then there are the added number of blankies that the kids use when it turns cold outside.  The good news of all this is that when spring turns to summer, I find myself with about half the laundry I’ve gotten used to doing in the winter – kind of a fall back, spring ahead-type thing for laundry, I guess.  But more laundry folding and less blogging for me in the mean time.

And that reminds me, a funny thing happened at church yesterday.  When my class got back to our classroom after large group, there were 2 new kids sitting there.  I introduced myself, and we were just getting started when their dad came to the door, seemingly embarrassed and very apologetic as he asked for his kids back – turns out their family had forgotten to set their clocks back  an hour, so they were actually there for the next service 🙂

Our family remembered to change our clocks, but we didn’t get to appreciate the extra hour of sleep it was supposed to bring – kids have biological clocks, they wake up at the same time every day regardless of what the clock says or what time zone they are in.  This is especially good advice if you’re going to travel with kids across time zones – don’t fool yourself into thinking that your kids will adjust to the local time when you travel, or you could be in for a not-so-pleasant surprise.  My wonderful, thoughtful husband is always the one who gets up early with the kids, but I had to be at church at 8:30 yesterday.  Also, I was up all night with a killer headache – now that was strange.

I am very lucky to be able to say that I very rarely get headaches.  If I don’t get enough sleep, I will have a dull ringing in my head, but nothing like Saturday night’s doozy that was actually waking me up throughout the night.  Luckily it went away (with help) before I arrived in my classroom full of 1st graders.  But I have to wonder about the cause of this colossal headache – could it perhaps be some kind of weird virus that had me laid up all weekend?  Saturday I was knocked flat on my back by a sudden and severe mysterious back pain.  It began on Friday, when I decided to take my kids to the zoo since they had a day off school.  By the time we were ready to leave, I couldn’t bend over and had to ask for help to tie my shoes.  I thought maybe it was a pulled muscle or something, maybe a cramp that would work itself out – I couldn’t remember injuring it.  But I did not enjoy myself nearly as much as I usually do at the zoo 🙁  And thank goodness Hubby decided to  come with or I don’t know how I would have been able to handle 5 kids (my daughter’s friend came along) by myself without hardly being able to bend or move right.  When we got home, Hubby had some work to catch up on, and I fell asleep on the couch while waiting for him – something I haven’t done for ages which makes me realize that I didn’t feel too well on Friday.  Then Saturday dawns, and I can’t get out of bed because of the extreme pain every time I tried to bend.  So I stayed in bed until 1:30 – played my cards right and got lunch in bed too 🙂 – when we absolutely had to leave to meet our youth group kids for a service project.  I got the easy job – waiting for the kids who were late – while the others raked leaves and picked up litter, and while I took it easy, my back started to feel better.  But then came the headache which was to plague me all night.  What makes me think this is a virus is because of all the stuff going around lately, plus the fact that my sister had this same exact sudden backache a few weeks ago – could it be a contagious ‘backache virus’?  I owed my parents an email, but I couldn’t get in front of the computer with my sore back, so I called them from bed Saturday morning, and that’s how I found out about my sister.  Anyway, my point is, it was a busy weekend, but also one where I couldn’t get to my computer even if I had had the time, hence the slow pace of the blogging.

And speaking of things going around…  my parakeet JJ is feeling much better.  He’s even chirping again!!  He hasn’t lost his balance while sitting on his perch in days, and his physical appearance is starting to look healthier.  The lady at the pet store said that if a little bird is fluffed up and at the bottom of his cage like JJ was that it’s almost always too late to save them, so I feel really great that my little guy seems to have another chance.  I guess I should have bought this really cool looking toy I saw the other day, but my husband and I have a policy that we try not to buy anything unless we have an immediate use for it.  This thing was a $10 cabinet – you install it in your living room or somewhere; it’s a nice looking wood cabinet, and it opens into a little play yard for small birds.  Ugh, just writing about it makes me want it, but the store was an hour away, and JJ is a cage bird – I don’t know that he would come out to play in a play yard.  I think of him as so fragile, so it would be difficult for me to make him come out; I sure wouldn’t want him to get sick again.

Well, anyway, I’ve rambled enough – guess I just wanted to share my relief at getting well and of being able to blog again.  Until that overdue Halloween post…

Camping Pictorial

Posted in Travel on June 7th, 2009 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

If you’ve been reading my blog lately, then you know that I was away last week camping with my family –  my husband, 4 kids (ages 9, 5, 2, and almost 1), and 2 dogs.  Camping for the entire week with 4 little kids has its ups and downs; mostly ups.  But one of the major downs is the amount of house-mom work that awaits my return:  6 persons worth of laundry for a week and a half, which I refer to as “Mount Washmore”, grows to be the size of a small county’s dump.  And my Week O’ Heap O’ Paperwork I must sort through is picture-worthy:

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But when all is said and done (a week or more from now), I will say it was well worth it.  It was worth it to be (mostly) away from the internet and other electronic distractions for a week, especially tv.  During that week, it wasn’t my job to dwell on horrid and depressing headlines from around the world.  And it was worth it to spend a distraction-less 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with my family, just the 6 of us in the wilderness (of Indiana) with only the bare necessities (a furnished cabin with refrigerator and a store within walking distance) with which to survive…

A great time was had by all, and camping is definitely  something that we will do again in the future.

This is our cabin.  It has two beds downstairs where Daddy, Mommy, Disney, and Charity and Beasley (the dogs) slept.   Along with the two beds are a table and chairs, a bench, shelves, a half-bathroom, a mini-fridge, and a microwave.  There is also a ladder which leads to the loft that spaciously houses two twin mattresses where our two oldest girls slept.  As you can see, there is also a picnic table out front and a grill and fire pit.  Our cabin’s porch also came with a great view of the fishing creek and the sunset.

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We did lots of fun activities while we were camping; including boating.  We took out a rowboat (thanks for rowing, Dad!), and the little ones caught a nap before we set sail:

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We also took out a large pontoon boat and made ourselves quite comfortable watching for wildlife for hours at a time:angola-camping-trip-spring-09-062

I think I could get used to being a boat captain; I just loved driving the boat (and my husband says I’m good at it, whatever that means).  But I really did love being the captain, deciding when to pull close to shore, idling the boat or even keeping pace with the wildlife as we did when we followed a young hunting raccoon.  We were able to see SO much wildlife; all in its natural glory; it was great!  Among the highlights: butterflies, dragonflies, water snakes attacking fish, fish attacking fish, herons, swan  families, frogs, crayfish, geese families, raccoons, does and their fawns, turtles, and even lots of campground dogs and puppies.  Here is an example of the beautiful scenery with a doe getting a drink at sunset – I missed photographing her fawn, oops:
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And the next picture combines two of the kids’ favorite things about camping –  frogs and marshmallows – I guess “Big Buddy” does not eat marshmallows…  not raw ones anyway.  For those of you who are wondering about my frog phobia, you  should know that there was a mandatory 5-foot-diameter ‘frog buffer zone’ around the cabin for me.  But I did come to terms with the phobia in some ways during the trip, maybe it will lessen with time, who knows.

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Next is a pic of our baby boy – he was so excited to  finally get at that basketball that we had to take a picture.  Never mind that he’s going to play baseball for the Chicago Cubs some day – or the Chicago Bears if my husband gets his way…

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Here are all 4 of my kids on the beach – they all loved playing on the beach!

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And, some more examples of the beautiful scenery – the rising moon over the lake at sunset:angola-camping-trip-spring-09-088

A hot air balloon over the lake:

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And that reminds me – we also spotted some parachuters in the sky (and lots of cool airplanes – the airport was across the highway at the front of camp) who landed in a field nearby.  Our daredevil 5-year-old Sammie said, “I want to do that!”.  It’s really funny that she said that if you know Sammie.  And ironically, when she was in the womb, I  even said that she would be the one to parachute and do crazy things like that to scare her parents!  I could just tell by the strength of her kicking and the fact that she was constantly moving…  Well, anyway, another great trip, and let me close by recommending camping as an inexpensive family vacation that pays dividends in quality time and togetherness!

Laundry, Origami-Style

Posted in Fun Forwards on February 23rd, 2009 and tagged , , , ,

I received an interesting email forward the other day; it’s a Japanese video that shows a woman folding a shirt perfectly in a matter of seconds using an origami technique.  I haven’t tried it out yet; I’ve been too busy blogging instead of folding my laundry 🙂

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Sick Of Being Sick

Posted in Everyday Life on January 30th, 2009 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The past week and a half in our house has been awful.  It all came to a head last Friday when our two-year-old got sick in the car.  Last weekend, when she wasn’t sleeping, she was throwing up or in the words of Chandler, played by Matthew Perry on the tv show Friends, “visiting a town a little south of throwing up…”.  Later in the weekend, her baby brother was afflicted with the same illness, and now we had huge messes x2.  Big sister Sammie got it later in the week, but luckily, the little ones started feeling better.  Add in a snow day and a couple of weather delays, and our house was chaos for what seemed like forever.  On top of everything, I had some sort of extreme fatigue.  I was so worried about it that I even made a doctor’s appointment and went in, where the doctor ran some blood tests and even gave me a neck xray since I had a strange achiness accompanying the fatigue.  I guess it didn’t occur to me that I could have the same virus that struck down the kids, mainly because I didn’t have the same (disgusting) symptoms they had, but I did look up some stuff on the internet in an attempt to scare diagnose myself.  The good news is, my xrays and blood tests came back normal (well, I’m actually still waiting on one of the tests, but it’s Friday and the nurses are out to lunch and won’t be back until Monday afternoon – what is that?  Can I have a job like that?), but the tests that did come back show that there is nothing wrong with my thyroid or my iron levels, both of which I thought were possibilities.  So that’s good…  I guess.  If there was something wrong with my body chemically, we’d be able to fix it, and then I’d have the energy I need to keep up with my 4 little kids.  Now that most things came back normal, I don’t know where to start to feel better…   Although I do feel much better today, but still no where near normal, and that makes me think it might be the illness my kids had after all.  But it was a bizarrely lengthy version of the stomach flu, and it will take us weeks (at least!) to catch up on all the work that didn’t get done in the week and a half of illness, sigh.

My husband had to take off from some of his work so he could watch the kids while I rested, and especially with all the laundry we’ve had to do around here, Mt.  Washmore is once again threatening to take over the second floor of our house.  All this catching up, and I’m still exhausted…  My husband seems to think I have sleep apnea, mostly because I snore often and loudly and I’m always needing more sleep.  I forgot to bring this up to the doctor, but if I ever get ahold of her and that last test comes back normal, maybe we can go from there…  I do seem to need an awful lot of sleep to function.  Well, anyway, that’s my story – sorry if I grossed anyone out (especially body-function-joke-hater Derek), but I thought people should know where I’ve been for the last two weeks.  At least the kids are feeling better – it was beyond sad to see them crabby, lethargic and not able to keep anything down…  Is it time for summer yet?!?

Where’s My Happy Little Guy?

Posted in Kids on January 7th, 2009 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My son (after having only daughters for the past nine years, it seems weird to say the word son) must be teething.  He will be 6 months old on Sunday already, and for the last 5 days, he’s been crying constantly.  Yesterday was the exception, but 4 of the 5 last days, he’s been crying nonstop – it’s quite taxing for both of us.  Mostly, the exhaustion comes because I just feel badly for the little guy – he used to be the happiest baby and smiled constantly.  But after trying everything to cheer him up, sometimes I selfishly think about how hard it is on me as well.  I can’t imagine the pain he’s going through, but in the mean time, I can’t get anything done around the house – and leisure time?  Forget it.  It’s hard to get anything done while holding him, and holding him offers one of the only ways to keep him from crying – sometimes even holding him doesn’t work.  Sometimes there is no choice but to put him down somewhere, like when I’m cooking for instance, and he’s not happy anywhere right now…  not in his playpen, his bouncer, his bouncy seat, his crib, the floor, nowhere, which means he is screaming, and it’s a draining form of torture to hear a baby cry all day.  The only reason I’m actually able to sit down and write this blog (YES!  Leisure time after all!) right now is because he is passed out (after a crying spell) sitting on the couch next to me.  He sometimes likes it there too, but that means I’m glued to the couch – can’t leave a baby unattended on a couch of course.  So I can sit here and type this blog, but I can’t do things like tackle my accumulating clutter or begin the task of cutting Mt. Washmore down to size.  Mt. Washmore is the never-ending, magically replenishing pile of laundry often found lurking in households with 2 or more kids – I have 4 kids, so our Mt. Washmore is taking on a life of its own.  If we have any more kids, I’m afraid people who come to visit us will just arrive at the foot of a gi-normous pile of clothes where there once was a house and a family who lived inside.

I try to tell myself that things like backed-up laundry and clutter don’t really matter in the long run.  Heck, I’ll probably even be bored and WISH I had lots more laundry to do once my kids are all grown and in school during the day.  But just as I convince my brain that this is true, my feet stumble over something that’s in the way and shouldn’t be there – clutter or a basket of laundry to put away.  Speak of the devil, the laundry buzzer just went off…  if only my son will sleep through the transfer from the couch to his playpen so I can go fold it and put it away, thereby avoiding feeding Mt. Washmore.

HE DID!  He’s asleep in his playpen!  But now the dogs are barking at the neighbor’s cat again and WAAAAA, WAAAAAA!!!  Those dogs have woken the baby again!  Sigh…

I guess today will see yet another expansion of Mt. Washmore after all.

Vacation Diary – Chapter Six

Posted in Travel on November 25th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

NOTE:  This is the final part of a 6 part series about a family vacation to Florida

Friday, October 24, 2008 – We slept in (at least I did – my husband got up with the kids) and packed up and decided to depart early.  We were toying with the idea of renting an air boat to take into the swamp, but it was overcast again, and we weren’t sure how the kids would fare in the swamp.  So we headed out of the Orlando area, and we stopped at two beaches.  The first one was not memorable, and I don’t remember where it was – somewhere south of Flagler beach because we stopped there next after heading north up the coast.  The first beach had crushed shells for sand and it was still overcast and windy which made it a little chilly.  It was really cool to see two different moods of the ocean this trip; especially since we’re used to landlocked Ohio.  Well, we have Lake Erie, but that’s not the same as the ocean.  On the way there, it was a beautiful blue/green with soft, rolling waves.  On the way home, it was gray, and the waves had white caps and sometimes a large one would sneak up and catch us off guard and soak us.  At Flagler Beach, we found a coconut and a log, which we took with us – only after asking the park ranger on duty, of course.  He was friendly, and he said that coconut must have come a long way – and now it calls Ohio home!  Flagler Beach is a Florida State Park, and it was very nice.  There was a ramp leading down to the beach for the wheelchair-bound or strollers.  And the bathrooms were very nice for being outdoor state park bathrooms – they should have been a step away from port-a-potties, but these were really nice and clean too.

Since we were ahead of schedule, we decided to spend the night in a hotel, so we stopped outside of Savannah, Georgia at a Comfort Suites in Pooler.  It was a nice place, and we went swimming in the morning.  I think their chlorine content in the pool was way high because my husband’s eyes were burning and for weeks my girls and I had problems with our hair.  It was getting tangled really easily, and it wasn’t smooth or soft anymore.  My husband held my ponytail up to the hair closer to my head and there was a huge color difference – the ends of my hair were shades lighter than the top!  I have long hair, so I think the bottom part of my hair which was in the pool the longest got bleached by the chlorine.  I actually haven’t had the time to go and get it chopped off, but it seems to be getting back to normal now, thank goodness.

Saturday, October 25, 2008 – The hotel had a breakfast, which was actually kind of crowded, but we enjoyed bagels and cereal before our morning swim.  Got on the road about noon, stopped around 1:30 for lunch in the car.  I had an avocado sandwich (good!) from Atlanta Bread, and the kids had Bojangles Chicken, which has really good fries.  Chicken is pretty good too.  Stopped at a Shell gas station around Spartanburg, South Carolina, where we were approached by a man who had “run out of gas”.  Luckily, he had plenty of jewelry on display inside his coat to sell, so hopefully he wouldn’t be stuck at the gas station for long.  Traffic got a little backed up near Asheville, and it was bumper-to-bumper, but for only about 10 or 15 mins.  We decided to get off of I-40 to enjoy the mountainous scenery since we’re not usually in the mountains when there’s daylight on our trips down south.  In the peak of autumn color-changing season at sunset, the mountains were nothing short of gorgeous, and we pulled over at a few scenic overlooks for observation and picture-taking.  We stopped at a wonderful little restaurant in the mountains of Eastern Tennessee called “BBQ Garden Cafe”, and I can’t say enough great things about the place.  The ribs and corn were the best of each that both my husband and I have ever hadAnd that’s really saying a lot because we are tough critics when it comes to food at restaurants.  Unfortunately, as we chatted with the owner we learned that they were days away from closing – just not enough business in the mountains.  It’s a real shame too – best food I’ve had in a long time.  And it was a family owned place, so the owner got your order and went to grill it himself, and he even had his kids helping – a really nice family, and a really nice family atmosphere also.  I really hope that by some miracle the place doesn’t close – I was going to make sure we go back there every time we’re in Tennessee.  Here is the address, just in case you’re in the area; I can’t say enough how much I recommend the place.  You might want to call first though, since they did say they were closing down!  It’s located at: 3323 Cosby Hwy, Cosby, TN 37722

After the delicious dinner, we headed for home in Ohio, and we arrived at about 5 in the morning, a little early compared to usual.  But that’s ok, we needed the day for catch-up on sleep, laundry, unpacking, etc.  As you can see, I’ve been busy ever since which is why it took me a month to finish the trip diary.  But now I have, and all I have to do is cut and paste all 6 parts into one diary for our family to read for years to come.  Thanks for letting me share it with you; here is a picture of the autumn Smokies at sunset:

 

Stress

Posted in Everyday Life on October 30th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , ,

I feel like I can barely keep my head above water these days – I’m so incredibly overwhelmed with things to do!  To top it all off, our dog had a huge swollen lump on her face that just kept getting worse so we had to take her to the vet.  It’s an abscess tooth, and the vet also found a few other problems.  In short, we have to decide how much we can afford to fix.  This dog is like one of our kids; we got her before we were even married, and at the time, we had trouble adopting a dog because we were so young and lived in an apartment, so shelters wouldn’t let us adopt.  But finally, we found Charity, and they let us adopt her, and she was the most terrible puppy you can imagine.  We stuck through her puppy years, and by age 2 she was the best dog ever.  She is now almost 11 yrs old and a major part of our family, to say the least.  So anyway, she needs some treatment at the vet and at home, which will increase our busyness considerably.  Add to that some household stuff I’ve been backed up with for months (still haven’t unpacked all my hospital stuff from when the baby was born in July!), and it just keeps getting worse.  It’s really hard to do all the laundry and meal preparation and cleaning up after a family of 6 when I have two little kids to watch all day!  Thank goodness the other two are in school, but between errands, feedings, diaper changes, cleaning up spills and messes, and playing, I don’t have enough time left over for household duties, much less stuff I’m backed up on…  And forget about hobbies; which is why I might have to let my blog go.  I really don’t want to; I enjoy writing on it; especially cuz it gives me a nice way to preserve memories for our family.  But right now, it’s  a source of stress as it’s just another thing I’m trying to work in.  I wish I could be more passive about housework and laundry and stuff like that, but it just bugs the heck out of me when I let stuff go.  And for good reason – I never have the time to catch up on stuff that’s put off until later!  But enough of that, I’m just venting my stress, and also warning you that my blog posts are going to become even more infrequent.  It’s a shame too…  I have a lot left of our trip to FL to share that I’d also like to record in my diary…  might not be able to write about it until 2009!

Crazy Busy

Posted in Kids, Travel on July 2nd, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

In the past few days, I’ve been able to catch up a little, but I haven’t written much before today and yesterday because we have been too busy having fun!

It started last Friday when we took the kids out to the Fun Spot in Angola Indiana.  We had a great time, but I think I learned a lesson about taking 3 kids out for a full day of fun in the sun while I’m trying to nurse a full-term pregnancy.  It was over 80º, and we ran out of water and I got sick.  I think what pushed me over the edge was trying to watch my 20-month-old as she sat at the edge of a pool while my other children and husband went on the water slide.  It’s hard to explain to someone who doesn’t know, but being this hugely pregnant is basically like being incapacitated – if my toddler had fallen into the water, it would have taken me way too long to get over to her.  There was a lifeguard present, but still I was a nervous wreck and the stress of the situation was too much, so I picked her up and took her away from the pool.  This of course made her cry, and so the exhaustion came from trying to redirect her and do something else in the heat…  it was all just too much for me when all I wanted was a seat in the air conditioned arcade.  And for his part, my husband only got to go down the waterslide once which also made me feel badly because he had so much fun, but I just couldn’t handle our toddler any longer in the heat alone.

After the water slide fiasco,  we made our way to the animal area – they have a macaw parrot and a few baby deer and some big cats.  They are rescue cats; lions and tigers and a cougar, and I’m not sure where they were rescued from.  I was a little disenchanted with how small the animals’ enclosures were, but since they are large cats and spend roughly 20 hours a day sleeping, I think it’s a good thing that they’ve been rescued at all and get food and shelter every day.

Then it was time for more rides, and this place is built for kids my daughters’ ages!  They have about 10 kiddie rides which all 3 of them could ride, and my 8-year-old still really enjoys these since she’s not ready for big rides yet.  Her little sister, on the other hand, cannot wait until she is a little taller and gets to ride the 4 roller coasters the Fun Spot also has.  Then they have several middle-of-the-road rides for everyone, like flying boats, a scrambler, a tilt-a-whirl, and even more I’m not mentioning.  Compared to the carnival that just left our town, admission into the Fun Spot is a steal – it was $4 for me, a non-rider who just wanted to visit the zoo.  Our little toddler cost only $4, and she was able to ride about 10 rides.  Our 4-year-old was $8, and my husband and our oldest were $16 each.  So for a grand total of $48, it was a full day of family fun and much cheaper than the traveling carnival or even the county fair, based on what you get for your money.  And I have to add that in June – too bad it’s over now – but in June they had a special promotion where if you bring in a report card with A’s and B’s on it, the kid that earned them gets in free!  So subtract $16 from our $48, and our day of fun was only $32 – we were really pleased.  The only problem with the place is that they are at the mercy of the weather always, and with all the rain and storms we’ve been getting, our day of fun was no exception and was cut short when a sudden storm moved in.  But it was only an hour and a half away from closing anyway.  Also, we had been about to leave as it was, and the staff handed out half-price admission coupons, so we will definitely be back when I can enjoy some of the rides myself after the baby is born.  And I will be able to give hubby another few rounds on the water slide!  We were so pleased with the place that we tried to go back Sunday since we wanted to take advantage of the report card promotion one more time before June was over, but alas, the weather foiled our plans and we ended up at Crazy Pinz in Fort Wayne, Indiana instead.  Still a fun day, but no where near the value of Fun Spot.  Crazy Pinz is an indoor entertainment place, and they have an arcade, mini-golf, bowling, and a 3-story play area for the kids.  We’ve been there before and really liked it, but this time, everything had changed and was MUCH more expensive.  But, we had 4 little kids (brought a friend along) who really thought we were doing something really fun that day, so what could we do but spend the day at Crazy Pinz regardless.  I have to mention that somehow, on the way to Fun Spot on Sunday, my husband and I got to talking I guess and somehow missed the exit and overshot the place by about 20 miles.  (Sorry for not using you, Mr. GPS, I thought I knew where we were going!)  Then Fun Spot was closed for rain, so we had to head down to Fort Wayne, and overall we ended up spending an extra $20-30 on gas…  Kind of a big oopsie with gas prices being so high in this day and age.  It was a bad luck kind of day, but we did end up salvaging it, and overall, it was an AWESOME weekend.

Saturday we went with friends to see the movie Wall-E and then visited a friend who is recovering from heart surgery.  He is doing well thankfully, and we all enjoyed our visit together – even the kids, who played with cats and bugs and other creatures found around their house in the country.  We ran up to their church which was having an ice cream social and enjoyed delicious food and homeade ice cream – a dream for a pregnant lady – YUM!  Wall-E was pretty good and as it turns out, the Pixar people had a brainstorming meeting years ago, and this is the last film to be made from ideas presented at that meeting.  Others are A Bug’s Life, Monster’s Inc., and Finding Nemo, so needless to say, that brainstorming lunch should go down in history!  I have to say I was a little taken aback by the lack of human dialogue in Wall-E.  Even after seeing the previews, I wasn’t prepared for it.  I think this is what may have finished off my 4-year-old since she had to leave the movie theater with dad before the movie was even half over.  She’s been able to make it through the last 5-10 movies we’ve been to in a theater, so that’s why I think it was the lack of dialogue in this one that did her in.  It was a cute movie though, but not on par with Pixar’s latest features like Monsters Inc. or especially Finding Nemo, at least in my opinion.  Then again, it was SO different, mostly because it was so futuristic that I suppose it’s hard to compare to the others.

So yeah, fun extended weekend, even though piles of laundry await my folding.  If you’re anywhere nearby, head out to Angola, Indiana and visit the Fun Spot, it’s well worth it especially if you have really little ones – it totally trumps a place like Six Flags with their high admission prices and long lines.

Third Trimester Blues

Posted in Kids on June 16th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , ,

Well, it’s that time again, the lovely third trimester of pregnancy.  It creeped up on me really fast while I was waiting for the ‘golden age’ of pregnancy to kick in – the second trimester.  Except that I never felt as great as they say you should feel during the second trimester, so while I was waiting, time passed on by and here we are in the third trimester.  I guess I should be happy that the pregnancy is almost all over, but it’s hard to look at it that way.  This is the time when babyitis kicks into overdrive.  The yearning to hold and sniff and care for the newborn baby becomes so overwhelming, it’s intense.  And then there’s the lethargy and the grumpiness.  I just don’t feel like doing anything lately!  It’s really difficult to not be grumpy while chasing after kids all day when all I really want to do is sit on my butt and play video games.  But if I were even to allow myself to indulge in some “doing nothing” time, I know I would be interrupted constantly by needy kids – kind of like when I sit down to type a blog post!  And then there’s the guilt…  now that we’re past the 85º+ heat wave, I feel like I should take the kids outside, but I’m just too tired!  Besides, as much as I tell myself to let the housework go for a month or two, I still can’t bring myself to actually let it happen.  So by the time I’m done with my “dailies” (daily chores like laundry, meal making, picking up after kids, errands, etc), I have barely enough energy for anything extra like my long-gone daily walks.  This week, I have to unpack the kids from their trip to Grandma’s, but at least I got caught up on laundry while they were gone and lucky for me, Grandma sent them home with literally only 2 pieces of dirty laundry – NICE!  The kids had a lot of sleeping to catch up on, so they’ve taken naps today, and I’ve gotten a lot done, so maybe tomorrow or later this week we can get out and enjoy the beautiful weather.  Our town’s annual carnival is in town starting tomorrow, so I know we’ll be up there once or twice.  They have Dippin’ Dots, ice cream super-frozen into little balls, and it’s SOO good!  It’s my favorite thing to begin with, so during pregnancy, it’s a MUST-HAVE!

The good news is that my mood seems to be improving.  I actually wrote the beginning of this post weeks ago – I just haven’t had time to finish it until now.  And now that I’m finishing it, my feelings have changed a little.  Instead of feeling the usual ‘my-body-will-never-be-back-to-normal’ frustrations, it seems like the birth of our baby is right around the corner; actually I have to start doing the weekly doctor visits already!  And I feel less grumpy than I did a few weeks ago, and even less sore in my body, though physically even more tired.  The difference is that instead of not feeling like doing anything, now I feel more like doing things, but I physically cannot because I am so huge.  I have gained over 50 lbs with this pregnancy.  Perfectly normal, I know, especially with the insatiable appetite I encountered between 3-5 months, but things like bending over to pick things up off the floor have become impossible.  You wouldn’t believe how long it takes me to put on lace-up shoes without help – which stinks because those feel much better on my aching feet than my sandals.  And turning over in bed has evolved beyond the 3-point-turns into the 5+ point turns – I kind of have to scoot in a circle until I’m turned over…  not fun for me; must be incredibly annoying to my bedmate – between me and our kids who wake up very early and sometimes throughout the night, he doesn’t get much sleep!  And with all this fun comes the feeling of dread that I know labor is just around the corner…  I sure hope this baby is easier on me than my second child was during labor…  long story short, she took forever then came really fast, which meant that the ‘window of opportunity’ where I was supposed to get the pain medicine opened and closed too quickly for anyone to do anything for me, leaving me with a ‘natural labor’ – and NOT by choice!  But kid #2 has been trouble from the time I could feel her kick right up until this morning’s tantrum, so as I always say, hopefully she is one of a kind!

To Do

Posted in Kids, Uncategorized on June 4th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , ,

This seems a little strange to me, but the other day my husband suggested that I should put everything into my blog.  Every to-do list, shopping list, etc.  Anything I’m putting into my computer should be in my blog, he says.  I’m a person who makes a lot of lists.  I’ve even been known to make a list of the lists I need to make!  It might sound dorky or anal, but it makes me feel better and more organized – I’m a busy person with a terrible memory, so any way I can feel a little closer to keeping my head above water when daily life becomes overwhelming is worth trying for me.  And often I do so with lists.  So, upon the advice of my husband, a person whose knowledge of everything seems to know no limits (and no, I’m not being sarcastic!), here goes – hope it doesn’t bore you too much, but here is my To-do List for when Grandma has my kids for just under a week – an event I am anticipating so anxiously that it seems to have SLOWED the passage of time…  We were going to take a trip to New York, but we declined it because of gas prices and in favor of getting things done around the house, sigh.  Besides, I don’t know how a woman who is 35 weeks pregnant would fare walking around such a big city!  Such a shame, though, it’s the LAST time we will be kidless for a long period of time because Grandma can’t fit 4 kids into her car to take them all at the same time 🙁

To Do While Kids Are Gone

RELAX!
clean game closet
organize kids room – clean out their toys, add toddler bed, create play room
hook up hose
clean out laundry basket o’ junk
clean out playpen
wash baby’s clothes(now that we just found out we’re having a boy intead of a girl, I have no boys’ clothes to wash!)
pack away Disney’s clothes (now that we won’t be needing them for the new baby!)
fix pipe in upstairs bathroom – and the light that got broken and flooded because of the pipe!