Friday, August 27, 2010

On the road again

We are heading out of town for a few days shortly and I feel like there is so much to do to get ready. It seems like I can prepare and pack in advance but when it comes down to the final days before the trip, I see a bunch of things that need to be done.

I am actually feeling pretty good about my trip preparation this time. I have gotten bags packed ahead of time and they are sitting in closets waiting to be loaded up. I am also trying to pare down the insane amount of items that we always seem to bring with us and never use. I have also been putting things into one central pile so nothing crucial gets forgotten.

One day I will be able to pack in my sleep. I have thought about making a list to be sure that I don't forget something but that would require sitting down and having the time to make the list. I figure as long as we have the kids, clothes and money, we should be good.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Where did the water go?

Yesterday we didn't have anything planned until late afternoon. So I was trying to think of something fun and new for Michael to do. We played in the sandbox for a little bit. Then I remembered an activity I had read about on Facebook or another blog.

I asked Michael if he wanted to do some painting. He asked me if it was painting like Daddy does since he has seen Todd paint the playhouse recently. I told him that it was a different kind of painting and it would only last for a little while. I also told him that it wouldn't be very messy, which is important to Michael. I got our big Home Depot bucket out and filled it one-third full of water.

We went out to the driveway with a pack of paintbrushes. I dipped my paintbrush in to the water and started to make shapes on the driveway. The temperature was in the low 90's so the water dried fairly quick. Michael saw what I was doing and started painting "grass", which was just a big spot of water that he kept expanding more and more.

Katie even got in on the fun when I gave her a paintbrush. Her idea of water painting consisted of dipping the brush in the water and then eating the end of the brush. Or just trying to see if she could stick her hands in the water.

It was fun to watch the kids playing together and painting on the driveway. Michael and I talked about where the water went and how the sun dried the water. He kept trying to paint over the places that had dried. The best parts about this activity was that it wasn't messy and the kids played for at least 30 minutes. That's a decent amount of time for one thing!

Monday, August 23, 2010

One out, one in

Michael had a follow-up appointment with his ENT last week. We normally go every 6 months but when we went earlier this summer, the doctor noticed that Michael's tube in his right ear had moved a little bit. He thought this was probably due to the ear infection that Michael had in April. He decided to give it 2 months to see if it moved at all and then we would check again. The tube had not moved back but it had not gotten any worse either.

The ENT decided that we should remove the tube as he didn't want the hole in Michael's ear to get any bigger. So he took it out right there in the office. This didn't make Michael very happy but I can understand that. He then put ear drops in and a cotton ball to keep the ear drops in. The cotton ball was worse than anything else that had gone on that day and a good bit of crying and whining ensued. As soon as I took the cotton ball out, it stopped.

He now has to wear an earplug when going swimming. I am interested to see how that's going to go but I told him that I would wear one too if it made him feel better. We will go back in 2 more months for another check. Here's hoping that there are no infections in our immediate future.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

17 months old

Katie turned 17 months old yesterday. How can that be?

I continue to be entertained by this child. She is so funny and loves to laugh at herself, as well as Michael. She never ceases to amaze me at the things she tries to get away with. In recent weeks, I have caught her climbing on the toilet seat to reach something on the sink; saw her climb up on Michael's train table; and watched her learn to climb into the van when it's time to go somewhere. Katie is extremely resourceful and will stop at nothing to get what she wants. Thankfully she has also learned how to get down the stairs going backwards so I can rest a little easier now.

Katie is still eating really well but now she will let you know that she is finished by saying "all done" when you ask her if she wants more. And if she decides that she is finished eating before you come over to her tray, food starts going over the side at a fast pace. She is very open to trying new things and definitely has her favorite foods. She loves to take Michael's juice and drink it all. I think she is catching on to the fact that her cup usually only has water or milk in it!

Katie's hair is getting pretty long and I can actually do some styles with it if she is patient enough to let me do that. I did pigtails in her hair the other day and a little ponytail on top of her head today. She gets tired of it after a while and messes it up but it's cute while it lasts. She is growing taller and taller and is wearing some 24 month clothes simply for the height. She also got a new pair of shoes this past weekend and her foot measured 6.5.

Some new words that Katie has learned this month are dog, duck (and the sounds they make), all done/gone, car, cup, apple, and juice to name a few. She loves to wave bye-bye to people when she thinks they aren't looking. She can also pronounce "Daddy" really well now and gets so excited when he gets home at night. She runs to greet him when the door opens!

As Katie approaches the halfway mark of her second year, her personality is emerging big time. And we are loving every minute of it!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

My Aching Back

When I woke up this morning, my back was hurting pretty badly. I can't pinpoint one specific incident that would have caused it. However, I suspect that taking 2 kids to the pool and being their own human jungle gym may have had something to do with it.

Michael has recently starting jumping to me in the pool. I usually try to stand a good distance away from the wall so he can swim to me after he jumps in. I didn't get away from the wall fast enough one time, which resulted in a bruise on my hip. And while he is doing all of these acrobatics, I am holding Katie in the other arm. I alternate between keeping her out of harm's way and keeping her from trying to swim away.

As long as I was sitting relatively still today, my back felt fine. But if I had to twist or bend down to pick up any of the food that Katie throws on the floor, it was killing me. I finally took some ibuprofen tonight in hopes that it will help me sleep and lessen my pain a bit. And I can only hope that tomorrow will be a better day.

One thing I have to say is that it sucks getting older. I feel like my body just isn't the same after having 2 kids. Oh, wait, it's not. I can only hope that staying active and chasing after the kids will keep me from having any further strains.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Summer....where did you go?

Right after preschool got out for the summer at the end of May, we were looking forward to a summer of fun activities, family time and days spent outside. 3 months seemed like such a long time and I was sure we would have plenty of time to do everything we wanted to do. Looking back, I realize that I had no concept of how quickly the time would go by.

We have gone to the zoo, the pool, as well as various local parks and playgrounds. We have taken a few small weekend trips to visit our parents, which included pool time as well as beach time. Michael spent a few days with my parents alone, which gave Todd and I some one-on-one time with Katie.

On the hottest days, we have done indoor activities. We have been to Monkey Joe's, a local bounce house play area, and the state museum. We did crafts at home, as well as played games and did puzzles. If the mornings were cooler, we spent some time in the sandbox and playhouse.

I feel a bit sad that the summer is coming to an end. It is my favorite season of the year by far. Despite growing up in New Jersey, I am not a cold weather person. I don't miss those times at all. And since we live in South Carolina, we will still be able to enjoy a few more months of hot to warm weather. All in all, I can say that this summer has been a success!!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Beach Time

We went to visit my parents this weekend. This morning, we all headed to the beach shortly after waking up. It was a bit foggy as we headed there but the sun was out by the time we got to the beach.

Some highlights include the following:

Building a sandcastle

Flying a kite

Family time

Unfortunately, we didn't get any pictures of anyone in the ocean this time. Everyone was going in and out and taking turns watching Katie and Michael when they were done in the water. Michael did much better with the ocean than he did last time. He actually went in and swam a short distance alone and put his head under the water. Katie was fine with the water as long as you didn't let the waves crash into her. I would consider the morning a success for all parties involved!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Could It Be Potty Time Again?

Katie is still going through this phase where she constantly is sticking her hand down the front of her diaper or in the side of the diaper. It has been driving me crazy and is not the most pleasant either. Most mornings she wakes up with wet PJs since she has pushed down the front of her diaper.

I haven't blogged much about this and the gory details. Some of them are too gross to share and I just get tired of telling her to get her hands out of her diaper. Even Michael tries to get her to stop doing it. I wish I could ignore the problem to make her stop but that's not an option, as evidenced by having to clean all of the Memory game cards after a dirty diaper incident.

Since I have tried so many different things, I figured that I would go ahead and take out the potty. Even if she didn't use it, she could get used to sitting on it. I ask her each night before we get in the bathtub if she wants to use the potty. Most nights she will look at me and say "no" quite emphatically. Last Wednesday she sat down on the potty and peed in it! I told her that she did a good job and she started clapping for herself. It was too cute!

I know this is just the beginning and I am not going to push the potty but will just keep offering it to her. Maybe she pushes the diaper down because she doesn't like the feeling of being wet or maybe she just does it because she knows no one wants her to! Either way, we have to come up with a solution for wet PJs and poopy hands.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Michael and the Ponies

This morning, Michael, Katie and I went to our local zoo with my next door neighbor and her son. We have a zoo membership and try to go several times a month, although it's been too hot to go lately. Today the weather was cooler than usual and almost pleasant. My neighbor has an upgraded membership that allows for free carousel rides, train rides and pony rides, as well as providing food to feed the birds and giraffes.

Alex, my neighbor's son, always rides the ponies when he goes. She had an extra wristband that she gave to Michael. So the boys were both able to ride the ponies.

I was amazed that Michael just went right up to the platform to wait for the ponies. He put the helmet on, got on the pony and off they went around the trails. Since it was still early and not that crowded, the boys got to ride once, get off and ride another time almost immediately. Michael loved riding the pony and even pet the pony's head while he was riding it. It was so neat to see him doing something new that he wasn't scared of at all.

In the future, we may have to splurge on a pony ride now and then when we go to the zoo. I was so glad that he enjoyed it!