Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Moving Parts.

Becca and Benjamin arrived in town this week for a little visit before she goes back to work from her maternity leave, and it has been an absolute mad house around here. The kids LOVE Benjamin, who is the sweetest little four month old, and they fight over who gets to hold him. We've had several discussions about Benjy is a person and not a toy, and we have to take turns. He came with me to pick Ellie up at school today and she about damn lost her mind.

It's insane though. I keep saying, it's a lot of moving part. Initially, seeing Adam snuggling the baby made me feel sort of bad that he'll never get a chance to be a big brother, but the total insanity makes me convinced that we made the right choice at stopping at two... AND I DON'T EVEN HAVE TO TAKE CARE OF BENJAMIN! Becca is the one doing all of all that! It's just nuts - I bow down to women who have more than two.

It doesn't help that poor Adam is fighting off a cold and a total mess. Yesterday he slept for an hour in my arms, which hasn't happened in probably over a year.

On Sunday night when he was running a fever and flowing out snot, I thought to myself, surely the fact that both kids are exhausted will mean that Adam would fall asleep okay on the mattress we put on the floor of Ellie's bedroom. INCORRECT. They were awake and racing around until 11pm. This is why Adam sleeps in a cage at night. The good news is that I borrowed a pack and play from a friend and last night he slept in our room, and slept pretty well.

In the meanwhile, we just enjoy our Benjamin Button (and hope he doesn't catch a cold.)

Friday, January 22, 2016

Garage Project.

New Year, new renovation, new construction on our house. THE FUN NEVER ENDS!

Glen's crew is still working on the gut job that Ed and Erl have going on at their new house, but in between, the guys are at our house, renovating our garage. The garage came with a lot of built in storage. The cabinets were pretty obviously built by the previous owner, and were a bit of a mess in places. For example - there were three sets of cabinets by the garage door. The middle one, he cut towards the top so that the doors opened up all the way with some clearance for the garage door track. The ones next to it? He did not open to trim those and put on a second set of hinges, so you could only open the doors until they banged into the overhead track, and so their usability was limited. He put in some shelving in front of the washer and dryer, I guess to block the view from the street? Or make it feel more like a laundry room? But it meant that the only reason we were able to park two cars in our two car garage is that the Fit has that weird narrow, steeply sloped hood and it slid right into place. And then there was his work bench, which Tim and I only used as a catch all space for dumping junk.

Tim and I have been talking about tearing out the cabinets for a long time now, because they were at the end of their thirty year particle board life span. We've done a lot of prep work to get things cleared out - seriously could have hosted three garage sales with the amount of crap we unearthed. Sorry, ten year old wedding presents we forgot about and never used! Sorry, random electronics that are past their life span! Sorry, giant tubs of stuff we won't use but also can't bear to throw away. The good news, is when everything is done, we'll have a place for it all.

They're currently putting in joists so that they can dry wall the ceiling and the walls. We're getting a second large loft space, and a small ladder so that it'll be more like an attic space than a crawl space - I think those extra feet up above will be a total game changer. We'll still have a cabinet specifically for the cats to poop in, and then all new cabinets made out of durable material for the storage of the rest of our junk. I can't wait to reorganize! I am dedicated to taking all of the sterilite tubs of crap from various closets and finally sorting through them and putting them away. Big Lots, here I come! I'm also hoping we'll have space for things that should live in the garage (folding chairs, luggage) but currently don't. And having that weird half wall down already makes the garage looks so much bigger. Can't wait to see it when it's done!

The kids are thrilled to have "the guys" back. After seeing Arnie, Adam immediately ran inside to go get his hammer, and then he offered to help Arnie "bang bang." They want to say hi every time we leave and every time we come home.

In other renovation news, the neighbors have finished gutting most of their house (which they bought from their grandma) and so we have a three year old boy moving in across the street. I'm so glad to be getting more neighbors with kids - having Lisa and her kids around the corner has been a game changer this past fall and winter. And now one more friend! Benjy and Adam stood on Benjy's bed yesterday and waved at our house across the street, and then Adam goes "your new house is very very beautiful!" (which sounds like "you new house id wery wery booful.")

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Music Videos.

Ellie is really enjoying her Wednesday afternoon tap and jazz classes, and today, asked me to make a music video for her. As you can see, it was a success all around.

But here is our first take, and I think you'll agree with me that it's the best.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Child Bride.

Both Tim and Ellie had Monday off, so we got to continue with our fun into a third day of the weekend. We even got to see the newlyweds, who were looking to offload some leftover wedding cake before they headed out for their honeymoon. Cake is my love language, and so we were happy to stop by and help. Ellie was even happier when Erl told her she could take some of the bridesmaid bouquets home. She immediately changed and insisted on making Adam play wedding with her.

And then she tried to negotiate with me on how old she needs to be to get married. She started at 16, and finally agreed that she wouldn't get married until she finishes college. Sorry kid, your mom and grandmas might have been child brides (some more than others!) but everyone had their undergraduate degrees. 

Having a little dance with her handsome prince. He also got his own bouquet but was pretty much disinterested the second we got home. 

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Love and Marriage.

We had an absolutely amazing time last night! It's really been a fun weekend all around - Tim and the boys had a great bachelor party on Friday, drinking, go-karting, and ending with a show at the Irvine Improv. Yesterday morning some of our old EA friends came over for lunch and lots of chatting, and then after we got the kids settled with Gigi and Grizz and Sara, it was off to the venue!

We got there in plenty of time - the venue was not kidding when they said we couldn't come in until 5:30 - they had the gate actually locked as they were setting things up! I mean, it does make sense. Overall, the wedding coordinators were great, really professional and fun and on their toes. Tim and I lined up with the groomsmen, and a few minutes after six, we were ready to go!

I was really nervous going into it, despite talking myself up about the fact that we were doing this with our friends, who would understand if I stumbled over a word or two, and that no one was looking at me anyways. And also, that I was a professional and wasn't going to cry like an infant. And lo, it was great! Tim was fantastic, as always, doing the "repeat after me" parts, while I handled doing the introduction and the readings. Tim said it best - it felt like it was just the four of us up there, and while I didn't cry, I felt incredibly moved and honored to be sharing this moment with our beautiful friends.

The reception was fabulous - it was just one big dance party, which is just how I like it. People took to the dance floor before it was even open, and there were little kids break dancing, and all of us just having an amazing time. I split a seam in my dress dancing, one of the groomsmen busted his pants wide open, and another guy was dancing so hard that he sweat through his entire shirt. It. Was. Great. And from then, off to a bar for one last quick drink, and thanks to Saint Gigi, we got home, crawled into bed, and didn't have to deal with our kids until after we'd applied Advil and brunch to our hangovers.

The kids reported having a great sleep over - Ellie got to go and stay at Auntie Sara's apartment, and Adam slept in the fun cage in Sara's room at home. This morning they had "red chocolate pancakes" (not red velvet though, don't even suggest that they might be red velvet) and rode big wheels and went to the park. AND Tim has tomorrow off, so we can all continue to relax and recover.

My beautiful dates

Mmm... red chocolate pancakes

Beetle Bug Boy and his auntie

The stunning bride and groom. Married!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Going to the Chapel.

We've had a week free of cooties around here, so that's been pretty great! So nice to just go to sleep or wake up without having to medicate anyone or catch vomit in my hands or inside my shirt. 

We also got new rain boots this week, and it hasn't rained since. El Nino is probably over now, thanks to me. 

But here is Adam's reaction to when it was raining last week.

Our friends Ed and Erlynne are getting married tomorrow, and Tim and I are tag teaming to officiate their wedding. Tim has done one before, and I've been a both a bridesmaid and a groomslady and made a couple of toasts, but this is my first rodeo actually being up in front. I think it's going to be great - I love the readings they picked, and I can't wait to help pronounce them man and wife. Jake is also a groomsman, which is fun. They had the rehearsal last night and then dinner, and we had a great time meeting all of their friends, and spending time with our friends. Plus we ate and drank like kings! Ellie is absolutely thrilled that tomorrow night she gets to sleep over at Auntie's apartment while Adam sleeps over at Gigi's. She's already packed and ready to go. I am thrilled that we can stay out late and sleep in a bit, hopefully, because I plan to eat and drink like a pig but then dance like a madwoman. 

Monday, January 11, 2016

Grizz's Golden Globes Drinking Game.

AKA, would you like to get so drunk that you pass out and dent your drywall? It's so fun - you watch an awards show with Grizz, and any time he says:

Who is that?
Never heard of it/him/her.
That get up is terrible

You get to take a drink! It's a true delight.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Slightly Better.

I think we're all going to live. Adam continues to be ready to go and sick of being cooped up. Tim is on the mend, ready to eat food and be out in the world. I slept probably 20 hours of the past 24, and woke up feeling capable of being out of bed for more than 45 minutes.

And thank goodness, Ellie's fever broke over night. We weren't sure if she'd make it to school today - she initially said that her stomach really hurt, but felt better after eating (I would bet she was just really hungry - she ate some yesterday, but not a full meal.) So, I decided that since she wasn't running a fever and felt up to it, we'd take her to school (because she started crying that she wanted to go after we'd told her that she was staying home.) We were about fifteen minutes late, but better late than never! I also figured it'd be good for her to get out and about, rather than laying on the couch and drowning in her own malaise all day. Her teacher said she was fine, and both kids were thrilled to go get bagels for lunch. 

Adam and I went out for a walk this morning and got our dose of fresh air. I'm back to putting all of the linens and towels through the wash for the second time this week. Mom reports that Dad is back at the gym, even after almost passing out from being so sick. His gym bunnies need to see his muscles in action, or they'll all end up week and sick, I guess. And Sara's at work. I'm hoping that we can have a calm, illness free weekend, and get a little bit back on track. And that no one else we know gets our gross diseases. It was very sweet though, how many of my local mom friends checked in with us, or offered to leave a meal at our door step, or Gatorade and crackers. It's wonderful to have a village, even if we sometimes use our village as a way to spread around pestilence. 

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Not So Fine.

Dear 2016, go scratch!

Yesterday morning Tim made it to the gym before work, and then turned around and came home because his stomach was in awful knots. He spent the day mostly in bed, and we found out that Gigi and Grizz had also taken to bed with the full blown flu.

The kids and I did our best with our normal routine, and Ellie had an amazing time at her first session of tap and jazz class. She's doing it with Lexi at the community center, and unlike when we tried right before she turned three, this time she was completely gung ho about it. And a couple of her classmates from TK are also attending, so that's cool.

After we got home and had supper, the wheels pretty much came off. Ellie was sitting under a blanket, shivering and crying about being cold. I snuggled up with her and as we watched the Lion King, her discomfort turned into a full blown fever, close to 102. I put her to bed, and then thinking over her symptoms, realized we might be dealing with a UTI. At 9:30, I loaded her up in the pouring rain and took her to an urgent care (after texting a bit with a sweet friend whose daughter has also had some bad UTIs - they are actually fairly common in little girls, because they are not the best at wiping and so things happen.) The urgent care people were incredibly professional and kind, and Ellie was actually kind of thrilled to be on an adventure. On the way there she goes "I'm going to get to pee in a cup! That's going to be so great!" Whatever floats your boat, kid.

She has a full blown bladder infection. As I was listening to the doctor's recommendation, I started feeling kind of hot and clammy. Ellie and I got outside, and I promptly threw up into the gutter in front of the urgent care facility. That was particularly horrifying for Ellie. I got home, tucked her back in, and told Tim he had to get up and go pick up the meds. And then I slept for 12 hours, more or less.

So today Tim is fine, Adam is good and great and absolutely raring to go. I feel like garbage, and poor Ellie continues to run a pretty high fever. I talked to her doc, and if she's not feeling better in the morning, we may have to go back to urgent care to get a more aggressive antibiotic. I am desperately hoping that doesn't happen, mostly because it's heartbreaking to see her so pink cheeked and hot and unhappy. And because we've already had the stomach bug! Why can't we at least go a few weeks without everyone being sick?

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Feeling Fine.

Ah, children, always surprising. As bedtime was approaching last night for the kids, I started getting ready myself because I was worried that I'd end up having to sleep either in the guest bed or in the recliner with Adam because he was so ornery around 8pm. Incorrect! He was ornery, but because he was feeling a little better and was starving and thirsty. I had to call my mom and ask her seasoned mom advice because part of me was saying "feed your son, he obviously knows his own little body," and the other part was saying "don't feed him unless you want to clean up more and more vomit as the evening goes along!" I gave him some toast and some water, but denied his requests for milk. I am experienced enough to know that revisiting dairy products in the middle of the night is hellish.

Anyways - the surprise was not that he woke up in the middle of the night, or that I spent a lot of time rocking him back to sleep and feeling him want to sleep deeply in my arms. The surprise was that he woke up at 4:30am and began screaming about how he wanted some milk, or some juice or some ice cold water. He's already funny in his crib, hollering that he's "stuck" when he wants to get out, but it was especially funny and yet also horrible that he was so specific in his desire for "ice cold water." So after some swearing, I got up with him, and he had a pouch and sipped some ice water and then absolutely pounded an entire piece of peanut butter toast. So, feeling better. Ellie was up at 7 and also fully mended and ready for breakfast, so that's good. We still took it easy today - Tim insisted on only eating peanut butter sandwiches, lest he end up barfing, and the kids took three hour naps. 

The good news is that despite the set backs of living in a vomitorirum, we really got a lot of work done around the house during the break. All of our Christmas decorations are packed away until next year, and the pine needles have been cleaned away. We're going to have to remove the broken cabinetry in our garage sometime soon, and so we've been going through and trying to declutter and clean out all of the nonsense that's stuffed in there. Tim took two carloads of crap to the ewaste recycling, I have a couple of bags of toys and clothes to donate (after putting five bags of stuff out before the holidays, mostly random homegoods from the garage) and yesterday I sold all of my CDs and DVDs to a random lady off of craiglist, since we live in a digital era. Plus Tim swept up the patio! And we washed and folded a million piles of laundry - I think every set of sheets hit the washer and dryer yesterday, plus a pile of towels, baby blankets and stuffed animals that got hit with the barf spray. And tomorrow, back to work for Tim and school for Ellie, and back to regular, wonderful life. 

Saturday, January 2, 2016

No Pictures, Please!

No photos from today, because unless you like pictures of barf, we have nothing for you. Our poor kiddos. Ellie was complaining of an upset tummy today, but I figured it was because she housed a huge donut this morning, and because we've had a busy couple of days of eating and playing and maybe she just needed to do some pooping. So I went about my day, and went to the gym, and then had to come home when Tim announced she'd thrown up. And then during his nap, Adam woke up and puked all over his brand new quilt from Grandma Rosie (I will spank him once he's well, Grams. How dare he!) And then, much barfing through the rest of the afternoon, and the evening ended with me arguing with Adam that yes, he had to go to sleep, and no, he couldn't have any more to eat (I did give him some toast and some water. BREAD AND WATER ONLY, NOW GO TO SLEEP IN YOUR BABY CAGE!)

I'm hoping they feel better in the morning, and that it's not too gruesome over night. The good news is that Tim and I are a very highly trained barf cleaning team, and our washer and dryer do a good job of trying to keep up with all of the sheets and towels (and stuffed animals. Sorry Lamby and Smelly!)

Other than that, we've had a nice 2016 so far. We rang in the New Year with many of the same friends as last year, though this year they put up a small bounce house in the garage and hired a babysitter to help wrangle the dozen or so kids age two to five (the littler ones were in the play room, not having a rave with the big kids.) The whole group turned it out when it came to bringing appetizers and desserts to share, and Nicole and Mike had a big pan of ziti and salad for anyone who wasn't already stuffed, and plenty of booze drinks.

Also, friends brought Pie Face, which Ellie absolutely LOVED. She said it made it the best party ever, because she "won" by getting whipped cream in the face every turn.

We got home around 10, and then the next morning rejoined the same group of folks for college playoffs and a chili cook off. My super spicy buffalo turkey chili took the title, and we sat around and drank and talked and continued to eat ourselves sick all day, while the kids played outside and then watched a movie. So basically, other than all of the vomiting and then weeping about vomiting, it's been a good year so far.