Friday, August 29, 2008

A night of lasts...

As I mentioned earlier this week, we are making the leap into big boy beds today. I have been concentrating so much on that big first that the lasts of last night hit me like a ton of bricks.

Last night was the last night that my two babies slept in a crib. When in the world did they get so big that they are old enough for big boy beds? "Shock and awe" took on a whole new meaning for me last night as I struggled with this milestone. I am not normally one to become nostalgic about big changes - I tend to be the person more excited about the things ahead than what is left behind - but it was different last night. I felt the need to stop and commemorate the passing of time with at least a few pictures. Below you will see E and B getting ready to enjoy their last time sleeping in cribs.

We had a second "last" last night, too. Hubby came up with the idea (and admittedly, it is a good one) to link moving the glider and ottoman into Z's room with the switch into big boy beds. At a few points, B & E have been resistant to moving the chair that they have had stories in for every nap and bedtime since they were born. Understandably so. We are getting a new chair for the room, but they really weren't interested. However, I guess it makes more sense to them when we tell them that the chair is built for baby rooms and now that they are big boys, it needs to be passed down. Again, I wasn't expecting it, but seeing the boys and their dad read bedtime stories for the last time in the chair was a tearjerker.

So, on to bigger and better things! Big boy beds, here we come!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Oooh... television

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


Lest anyone think that things are going too smoothly around here...

This morning, I was folding some laundry, and B and E were playing in their room. I wasn't hearing too much noise coming out of there, and although I knew there could be trouble, I figured that a few stuffed animals tossed around the room was a small price to pay for a block of time to finish a load of laundry.

After about ten minutes, I braced myself and then peeked into B and E's room. I looked around, and thought, "Hey, this really isn't that bad!" A few animals around, a few books, no big deal. E and B had closed themselves into their closet, and they were playing so nicely in there. It was so sweet!

Until I opened the closet door.

When I did, out poured the blankets from their beds as well as all kinds of diapers and clothes. As I stared in astonishment, I realized that EVERY piece of clothing that was hanging in their closet (on both the low and high racks) was on the floor (with many of the hangers broken), every piece of clothing that was in a box because it was too small had been dumped out, and every Pull-Up that we had in the diaper hanger was thrown haphazardly throughout the closet. Yes, it was a full-blown mess.

I should have taken a picture so you could all appreciate the craziness, but honestly, every single one of my brain cells at that point was working on mustering up the patience not to freak out. B told me how he used a box (the one that was full of small clothes) to climb up and reach the top rack. He and his brother had some sort of imagination-filled explanation as to why it was necessary to take down all of the clothes. I wish I remembered (was it dinosaur food? part of a roller coaster?), but again, my brain was busy at the time.

As my journey with two two-year-old boys continues, I am constantly presented (or hit over the head with, whatever you prefer) with a lesson about patience and realizing the things that really are a big deal. Hitting? Big deal. Biting? Big deal. Clothes innocently strewn all over the floor in the interest of some good imaginative play? Not a big deal.

Gotta love that the biggest lessons in my life right now are coming from my two-year-old kids!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Big Changes... To Everything There Is a Season

My boys are getting big.

I realize this is probably an obvious point (in a literal sense, they have grown two inches in the last two months!), but I see their growth and development in tiny bits and pieces each and every day.

Some changes are pretty little, and it often takes others to point them out to me for me to notice. Last night, an awesome friend of ours watched B and E so hubby and I could head into Chicago for dinner with another friend. When we came home, she mentioned that she was impressed with how many books that B and E were "reading" to her. Memorized, of course.

E and B LOVE books, and they definitely have their favorites. In these books that they hear over and over, they like to know what it says on every page. So that they can read them. By themselves. It really is funny. Almost every day, they will find a new book and ask me to tell them what it says on a certain page, and then they will go practice it over and over.

Yes, my boys are getting big.

Some changes, however, are momentous. As you may have guessed from my "ta-da list" post last week, we have been working on potty training with B and E. This has been a very gradual process, starting with just sitting on the potty to try it out, to just going around nap and bedtime, to full-out training. This major potty training has been going on for a few weeks, and I am finally feeling like we have turned a corner - we are not out of the woods yet, but I see a light at the end of the tunnel. Both of the boys are coming to tell us when they need to potty for both #1 and #2, and we have actually had quite a few #2s actually make it into the potty this week - hooray!!! More successes than failures now - thank goodness! We are only using diapers when the boys are sleeping.

Wow, my boys are getting big.

Another big change on the horizon - the switch to big boy beds. We are going to try to make the move this weekend for multiple reasons, including the fact that I am having a hard time getting them in and out anymore and that I won't be able to pick them up at all for at least a few weeks after our new arrival. Plus, B and E have both started talking about wanting a big kid bed, and we really would rather get that transition done before we are up half of the night with a newborn. Hubby has both Friday and Monday off, so a four day string with both parents home is also very appealing. I am definitely keeping my fingers (and toes, and arms, and legs...) crossed that this transition goes smoothly.

There are all kinds of big changes for my big boys!

Monday, August 18, 2008

My Ta-Da List

A few weeks ago, I decided to make a list of all of the things I accomplished during the day (rather than making a list of things to do). This morning, I was having a tough morning with the boys, and while skimming blogs while finally scarfing breakfast at 9:15am, one of the blogs I like to read talked of doing this same thing as a way to give yourself a pat on the back and put your day in a more positive light. (You can check out their post here.)

So, in hopes of making myself feel better, I made a list of all of the things that I did today and I thought I would share it all so you can get some insight into my life, a good chuckle, etc. This list is in no particular order - just how my brain remembered everything. Now, to some of you out there, some of these things don't seem like they should make it on the ta-da list (i.e. shower), but as all stay-at-home moms know, you can't take anything for granted. Enjoy! :)

  • Showered
  • Got dressed
  • Brushed teeth
  • Ate breakfast
  • Unloaded dishwasher
  • Loaded dishwasher
  • Checked and replied to email
  • Called my grandma
  • Called pediatricians office about B's missing medical records
  • Called record forwarding service about sending records again (yes, this is a whole other frustrating blog entry)
  • Called church
  • Cut coupons
  • Went through grocery ads
  • Made grocery list
  • Went through old coupons
  • Went through freezer and fridge and made an inventory
  • Created two weeks worth of dinner menus
  • Found recipe for zucchini bread (hopefully to be used tomorrow!)
  • Put away towels that were washed yesterday
  • Dried and put away boys' clothes, part one
  • Washed, dried, and put away boys' clothes, part two
  • Put away load of darks for hubby and me
  • Sat in bathroom with E and B for approximately 38 hours
  • Cleaned up four pairs of poopy underpants
  • Celebrated when E had a "giant poop" in the potty
  • Cleaned out potty chairs innumerable times
  • Cut up cantaloupe
  • Made morning and afternoon snack for us
  • Made lunch for all of us
  • Cleaned up dishes throughout the day
  • Cleaned up toys that were scattered around the house with the help of the fellas - twice
  • Got mail and sorted it
  • Thawed and prepped chicken for dinner
  • Cooked chicken, corn, and rice for dinner
  • Cleaned off table after dinner
  • Loaded dishwasher and washed dishes
  • Cleaned the table and counters
  • Picked tiny pieces of rice and corn off of the floor
  • Put in load of random laundry
  • Gave boys a bath & helped with bedtime routine
  • Continued my immeasurable amount of cloth diaper research - I think I finally have a hint about what I am doing!
  • Wrote this blog entry :)
  • Downloaded pictures from both boys' cameras
  • Replaced batteries in E's camera
  • Watched my belly jump while Z had his nightly party (not really a ta-da, but fun nonetheless)
  • Broke up a few fights
  • Stopped kids from swinging on curtains in living room
  • Played with puzzles
  • Read stories
  • Put together train tracks
  • Loved and cuddled two cutie-pies!
It is now 9:00pm, and although I hope to get a few more things done, I think this is going to be it for my list today. Ahh... the life of a stay-at-home mom...

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Millions of Peaches, Peaches for Me...

... or so I wish. (Don't you just love 90's music?!)

When I was pregnant with E and B and we were still living downtown, I LOVED getting peaches at the Green City Market, which is located in the southernmost part of Lincoln Park, just north of where we lived. Almost every Wednesday and Saturday, I headed to the market to pick up another 10 or so peaches, which would be lucky to last me two days.

I thought I was doing well with Z. I have had a few peaches, but never anything that really triggered any major cravings for me. Until Wednesday. B, E, and I made the trek into Chicago for my now biweekly doctor appointment, and we had some time to swing by the Green City Market. We picked up some peaches and cut into them when we got home. Oh. My. Goodness. They were so juicy and SO DELICIOUS! The boys and I ate through all ten peaches in about 36 hours. I even meant to snap a pic of the peaches in all of their glory in the bowl on my counter, but we were too busy eating them, and then they were gone! Now, I am craving some more farm-fresh peaches, and I am desperate to find some. I missed both of the markets near us this weekend, so now I am just going to have to go without for a while. What is a girl to do?!

Mmmm... peaches.

I shouldn't say that peaches are the only good things about the Green City Market. One of the things that I love about it is the atmosphere. The park setting is so calming and unexpected in the middle of Chicago. There is always a musician playing, usually kid friendly music - this week there was a man strumming away on his banjo. There are snacks to be had, too - our favorites are the fresh crepes and smoothies made with just-picked fruit. YUM! And I shouldn't leave out all of the produce, which is fresh and raised with local, sustainable farming, which is why I am sure it is so delicious!

Whenever I can make the trek to the market, I feel like it is a special treat. When we lived in Chicago last summer, we made it there every two weeks or so, and it was fun to make it back with B and E this year, too! After soaking up the sun in the park, eating crepes and drinking smoothies, and picking up some fantastic cantaloupe and peaches, we all went home happy and content.

Mmmm... peaches.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

A Trip to Brookfield Zoo

On Friday, B, E, and I met up with Papa and Grandma I. for a trip to the Brookfield Zoo. We had beautiful weather - 77 and sunny! And we had fantastic company, which made the day perfect. :)

Our first stop of the day was at the carousel, an E and B favorite. The boys were so excited to ride their ladybug and baboon with Papa and Grandma!

From the carousel, we went to the pachyderm house, which had elephants, rhinos, hippos, and even tapirs (which the boys were excited to see in real life after checking out on Diego). From there, we headed to the dolphin show. I was SO excited to check out the show, which I haven't seen since I was a kid. It was so fun to be there with the boys, watching all of the dolphin acrobatics!

After a quick lunch, we headed over to the children's zoo, where the boys got some hands-on time with some goats. We also got to check out a bald eagle, raccoons, groundhogs, cows, and pigs! There is actually a small bee exhibit in this area of the zoo, and, interestingly enough, it was one of the boys' favorite parts of the day.

B and E brushed up on their grooming skills. :)

A pic for all of you pig-lovers (you know who you are!) - this 3.5 month old piglet decided to take a dip in the water trough.

We all had so much fun that we stayed at the zoo until B and E couldn't stay awake anymore. All the way home, I had two boys making music with their sawing logs in the back seat. :) The volume of the snoring is directly proportional to the fun had that day, right?!

Thanks to Papa and Grandma I. for such a fantastic day!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Okay, so, this baby is getting big...

Yesterday, E, B, and I were out running errands and had to make a bathroom pitstop. When I walked into the bathroom, I happened to catch a sideways glance at myself in the mirror above the sink. I about fell over. I backed up, looked again, and thought, "Oh. My. Gosh. When did I get so big?!" I brought this up to hubby last night, and he was kind enough to say that I don't look huge from the front. :)

I am trying to keep in mind that my belly getting so big is a GOOD sign. Z is growing the way he should, and when the time comes, he should be ready to make his way into the world. Still, it is a bit disconcerting to realize that you could actually be walking around with a basketball under your shirt and still look the same.

I decided that I should probably take a few belly pictures to document the fact that I did actually carry this child. :) With B and E, we were really good about taking belly pictures - one every three or four weeks. For poor Z, these are the first belly pictures that we have taken, and I am officially at 31.5 weeks.

Anyway, here goes... you are getting my artsy version of the belly picture. It has my daily view, complete with missing feet.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


This is for all of you Illinois alumni out there...

When we were in Champaign a few weeks ago, hubby and I made sure to pick up some Illinois apparel so that B and E could not forget who our favorite college team is. :) Yes, we even picked up one for Z, too! We pulled out the t-shirts today, and both boys insisted on wearing their Illini "football pants" (as they call them), in spite of the 80 degree weather.

We even practiced our cheers... at the sound of "ILL," the boys know to yell "INI!" :)

Monday, August 4, 2008

Nickel Update

Still no nickel from B. When I followed up with the pediatrician, she reassured me not to worry about it, that if the nickel had made it to his stomach, then it will eventually pass. As long as he doesn't start showing signs of getting sick or bleeding, then we are good to go. Will we ever solve the nickel mystery?! I guess that remains to be seen...