Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween, from our family to yours!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pumpkin carving!

So, I haven't been able to do much right as of late. It seems I'm forgetting things, misplacing things, losing any desire to get anything done, and just generally being a failure at most tasks...but I had a burst of energy tonight so we ordered pizza and I carved the little pumpkins the kids got at one of our many trips to the pumpkin patch this year. I couldn't do faces as you will see they are really quite small. So, I decided to carve the letter 'E' into each one. I let the kids dig out the inner guts and they had a blast! I'm not quite sure how much of it they ate, but let's just say Elizabeth's pumpkin has two bite marks on it. LOL!

Miss Figgy has taken to being rather bossy as of late. This afternoon, upon waking from her nap, I could hear, "Mom! MOM MOM MOM! NOW!" You see, I'm not 'mommy' as I had hoped I would be. Instead, I have a grown up child who insists on calling me 'mom.' Ethan calls me momma.

I'm tossing around ideas for a large Christmas/birthday gift for them and I think we've decided upon a train table that also doubles as an activity table.

I'm really not quite sure what else to get for them. We were aiming for trikes, but I'm afraid we're in for a hard winter and won't spend a whole lot of time outside. My goal is to set the basement up as a playroom before it gets too cold out.

Hope all is well with you!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

It's about time! SO talented!


Handling a bully moment.

We had our first incident this evening and, surprisingly, my husband and I viewed it differently. We headed up to Frederick for a birthday party. My cousin's youngest son was turning 3. I'm not at all close with the family on my mom's side as we spent most of my life moving with the Navy. I have two uncles and one aunt on her side. The aunt is insane and, after abusing my grandmother for years, is now persona non grada and none of us really are quite sure where she is. One uncle passed away a few years ago and this cousin is his daughter. I have another uncle who has four kids. Anyway, like I said, none of us are really very close. I have one cousin that I really dig, but never get to see.

Ah! Sorry, back to the story.

So, we haven't seen any of these people since January. We got there and actually had a nice time. Ethan and B, the 3 year old, started off sort of feeling each other out. They were like dogs vying for the alpha spot. B pushed Ethan away from a chair and Ethan, not being a pushover, pushed him back. They played well for the next hour or so, which was nice. When B was ready to open presents, I tried to keep the kids back because I know how it is when you're a kid. You want to open your presents and don't want anyone else helping. Normal kid stuff! When he was done, though, Ethan went over to see one of the gifts that was laying on the floor. B wasn't playing with it. But, being the normal little boy, he didn't want Ethan playing with it, either. Again, totally normal stuff. Well, B tried to take it from Ethan and Ethan sort of grabbed his shirt to push him away. B took the toy and clocked Ethan upside the head, really hard. The boys were separated, with B being taken into a back room to be talked to by an adult and Ethan being scooped up by grandma. He cried for a few minutes, but got over it quickly and B came back in to apologize and give Ethan a hug. It was over and done with and I was satisfied with the outcome. After all, as I explained to the adults (all family), Ethan provoked B. Then I overheard a conversation. Apparently, B is having some issues with his temper and they were called to preschool on Friday because he punched a kid in the face. So, he does this to everyone for no real reasons except someone pissed him off. Is this normal 3 year old behavior? I mean, Figgy and the Professor are pretty rambunctious with EACH OTHER, but don't really get out of hand with other kids. As I saw this evening, Ethan is not one to back down from a bully (pushing B back, at the beginning of the evening). But, he has never raised his fist or a toy at another child. He did go through a quick phase where he hit his sister, but that's it.

In the car on the way home, my husband asked me about it and how I felt. Seeing as how I know him, and know he would gear his answer to mine, I asked him to tell me first. I was surprised to hear him express his anger towards the situation. He was, of course, aware that Ethan had started it, but felt a great deal of protection for his little boy in regards to the reaction from B. We talked about it and I explained that you really have to look at the age. B *just* turned 3. He is, for all intents and purposes, a 2 year old as far as mentality goes. He doesn't have a younger sibling, so he's not really accustomed to sharing toys with a younger child. He's grown up with an older brother and has had to fend for himself in that regard. So, my reaction wasn't quite as quick as his was. But, it has left me feeling like I may have handled it in the wrong way. Am I cold for not quickly jumping to defend Ethan and scoop him up the way my mom did? Am I wrong for explaining to him (as his grandma is comforting him) that we do not push and get angry about a toy?

Friday, October 24, 2008

Hit a wall.

I've hit a wall, so to speak. I noticed it a few weeks ago when I missed an ob appointment, which is not like me. I had an ob appointment scheduled one day at 8:00am and an appointment with the specialist the next day at 10:30am. Somehow, I mixed them up and, like I said, that's so not like me. I'm always early and never missed one appointment when I was pregnant with the twins. A few other things have happened over the course of the last two weeks and then I came to the realization yesterday that we've been planning a day at the zoo for Halloween weekend. It was *this* weekend (the weekend before Halloween). The result is that we won't be attending this year and I'm really quite bummed about it. I just feel like I've been running ragged the last few weeks and can't catch up. I'm waking up every morning at 5:30, wide awake and unable to go back to bed. My mind starts racing and I can't quiet it. By 10:30/11:00, I'm struggling to keep my eyes open and I'm finding my temper shorter and shorter with the kids for no apparent reason. I'm not sure where this is coming from, other than I'm just over tired and can't get enough sleep no matter how early I go to bed. (I'm finding myself crashing at 8:00 when the kids go down.)

Today was no exception to the running. My brother and sister-in-law live in Fredericksburg, which is over an hour from us. They were renewing their vows in the Catholic Church, so I packed the kids up and headed down. I got there at 10:00, sat through the ceremony, then went with everyone to lunch. I was headed back home by 1:15...drove an hour and a half and ran a few errands for hospice. Once I got home, the kids weren't interested in napping anymore since they slept in the car. Elizabeth all of a sudden developed a low-grade fever and became miss Snugglebug, which is so unusual because she simply cannot sit still. I'm attributing it to the shot they got last night...or teething since she's getting her molars. Jason fed them dinner for me and I curled up on the couch. I headed up a second ago to catch up, get these thoughts out of my mind, and go to bed.

We're not doing anything tomorrow. I've got to get over and see my hospice patients at some point tomorrow but, other than that, my plans include a nap and going through clothes (baby and mine). I think I'm going to divide the baby clothes into gender specific bins so that it's easier when the new kiddo arrives. Right now, they're all in the same bins separated by age...

Sunday, we have a birthday party in Frederick at 4:00. That'll take us about an hour and 15 minutes to get to and an hour and a half to come home.

I don't want to say this is pregnancy brain, because I really despise the idea of blaming anything on that. But, I feel like I need to just get away for a day or two so that I can recharge. Maybe a good massage? My perfect recharge session right now would entail a nice, cool hotel room with the shades drawn so that the room is black for one day. I honestly think that's all I need.

Our sweet moment of the day occurred this evening. Elizabeth was leaning against a chair in the living room, with her head laying on the cushion. She was softly moaning, wanting nothing to do with mommy for a moment, when Ethan walked over to her and put his arms around her and hugged her. Then, they sat down and curled up together on the floor. Awwwwww!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Ethan was up at 3:30 and 5:15. Night terrors, again? I'm not sure. I do know that I'm hearing a thumping coming from the adjoining townhouse at 6:00-something and during their naps, so we'll be moving bedrooms sooner, rather than later. I don't know if it's the 3-year old next door or if it's something else. We only have two bedrooms upstairs (third is in the finished basement) and we're in the bigger room. Their room is only big enough to fit the two cribs, their tall dresser and a hope chest. Once the new baby comes and gets on a schedule, they will all three be in the same room (our bedroom). I was going to wait until the baby is here and we're ready to switch rooms, but with the thumping, we'll just move the dates up. The bonus is that I won't be able to clutter the bedroom with clothes and such; it'll be more of a retreat as it really should be.

Ellie is testing every nerve in my body these last two weeks. I'm still congested and achy from the bug last week, so I know my temper is a little bit shorter than normal. She got up on the dining room table for the millionth time today, so I swatted her. Do you know she CHASED me across the living room on my way to the bathroom and hit me on the bottom?!?!? She is very whiny, very needy and very much into pushing mommy's buttons these days.

It's 8:00 and I can barely keep my eyes open! I went in for my follow-up appointment on Tuesday and had lost another pound. The first thing my doc did when she opened the door, other than give me a hug and a hello, was to talk about meds. Since the zofran didn't work and the Unisom is out of the question for me, she gave me two more things to try. One is a Phenergan suppository (UGH!), which I'm to try first. I've taken it twice and other than the usual side effects, it knocks me out. I took it at 4:15 today and fell asleep sitting up on the couch at 7:00. I crawled upstairs with both kids for bed and wanted to catch up on e-mail and try to log in some time for work. I'm not going to make it as far as work goes. Too much to actually think about and my brain shut down an hour ago.

The baby is doing very well! The heartbeat was 150-160, right on target, and she found it within seconds. He/she was right up against my belly near my pelvis. It was a fleeting moment, just long enough for both of us to hear, but that was such music to my ears!

So, that's it for us. Amber, if you're reading this, can we try and get together next week? I'll shoot you an e-mail tomorrow afternoon. We're definitely doing Boo at the Zoo; decided on it tonight after looking at finances for the next two weeks. We just had too much fun last year!

Friday, October 17, 2008

How did I make it through the week?

I can't believe it's Friday night, already. I honestly didn't think I'd survive the week; between me being sick and Ethan being sick, one of us was going to jump off a bridge! Poor Elizabeth...she just didn't know what to do. She'd pat me on the cheek and then pat Ethan on the head and go back to playing. My little nurse! I called the doc on the way to Jason's work on Wednesday and they had me bring him right in. His fever was 102 and he had (TMI!) chunky snot coming out of his nose. (Sorry!) He stopped eating and would scream, hysterically, when I tried to force some sort of liquids into his mouth (including popsicles). His ears were clear (they always say the same thing, his ears are clearer than most of the kids his age) but his poor little man. His throat was red and nearly swollen completely closed. She was positive he had strep, but after 10 minutes waiting for the cultures, it came back negative. So, she said she felt he had hand, foot and mouth. Okay, first of all, he's already had that. Second of all, he had absolutely ZERO sores anywhere on his body. I'd really just rather they say, "unknown virus" instead of creating something. This was a new, young doc and I really liked her, but I'd be more comfortable if she just said she didn't know. Speaking of which, I'm really bummed out. I spent six weeks researching the doctors available to us in this area when it came time to pick out a pediatrician. In all cases, my kids will have the very best doctors available to us. We saw the very best urologist/nephrologist when Ethan was a baby. We had the best cardiologist available to us when they were newborns. So, after six weeks, our pediatrician was chosen and I couldn't have been any happier with her. She came highly recommended, was written up in tons of local magazines (Top 10 in the Washingtonian), and was recommended by a pediatrician friend of the family who is located in California. Unfortunately, she is also the CEO of the practice and is burning both ends of the candles pretty closely. So, when I tried to make the kids' 2 year appointment, we were told she is not taking patients after the holidays. She's supposed to call us and I'll ask her for her recommendations as far as the docs in the practice goes, but I'm still really bummed. The kids adored her and she's always been very honest with me about things. I really liked this young doc that we saw on Wednesday, but I think she's a bit too young and fresh. So, I've got a list of the docs in the practice and I'll start the long process of researching them.

No news on the baby front. I *think* I've felt the baby move this week. I'm still throwing up, nauseous and feeling preggo. I'm pretty confident we're still carrying forward and that they'll be able to find a heartbeat on Tuesday. I honestly don't think I can handle another second trimester loss.

Twin-wise... I don't think I'm going to survive this newest phase; the terrible 2's. I know I'm in the minority as far as my thinking goes, but I truly believe the newborn - 9 month period was much easier than anything else. I can pinpoint when it got more difficult and that was right around 12 months. Everyone else says it got easier, but I've found the exact opposite to be true. It is exhausting, much more so than the sleep deprivation was, and I feel like I'm constantly on the edge. It's certainly a lesson in humility, patience, and acceptance...

Monday, October 13, 2008

Quick update

This is a quick update for tonight... Ethan is running a temp of 102.9 (rectal) and the doctor's office doesn't seem concerned. I am, but there's not a lot I can really do to push it because they won't see him until he's had a fever for three days. So, I'm loading him up on Motrin and Tylenol combos and trying to push the fluids. I'm concerned because I noticed tonight when he had his shirt off, that he appears to be malnourished almost. You can see his ribs in his back and his collarbone juts out. My mom keeps trying to remind me that my middle brother is just like that; he has an extraordinarily high metabolism and that the doctors tried for years to get him to gain weight and it never worked. I feed him whenever he wants it and can't really do much more than that. If he's done with what is on his plate, then he's done. So, I'm not sure what I can do about that. Mom says more fat. What does that mean, exactly? From 12 months on, our ped has sung my praises and tells me she'd take us on the road with her as an example of the proper diet. My mom's idea? Feed them more french fries. Thanks, mom!

I've got a fever of 101, but no strep throat. I ventured to the doc this afternoon and her professional diagnosis was "the creeping crud." Apparently, there is a nasty cold/virus going around and I lucked out. So, my thought is that Ethan has this, too. Elizabeth will not get sick; she hardly ever gets sick.

Jason let me sleep this morning, after my first doctors appointment (ob). I came home around 10:00 and dragged my sore body upstairs around 10:45/11:00 and slept until 1:45, when I had to get up for my regular doc appointment. What a nice husband I have! He'd call in sick for me tomorrow, but it just isn't going to work out with the workload he's got right now. So, I'll curl up on the couch and hope the kids will let mommy be sick.

We have some potentially devastating news to report on the baby front. I went in for my regular 4-week check-up and they weren't able to find a heartbeat. I had a good, healthy cry on the way home but I'm feeling like I know my body well enough to know when I'm miscarrying. When we had our last miscarriage this late in the game, I knew it was happening and we didn't even know I was pregnant (12 weeks along). I'm supposed to be 13/14 weeks pregnant (depending on which docs you talk to - the fetal medicine specialist says 13 weeks, the ob says 14 weeks). So, my doc asked that I hang in for a week and come back next Tuesday to see if anything has changed. The thought process is that, if the baby has passed, then my body will begin the process of flushing the pregnancy. If not, then the baby has had a week to grow and we'll try again next week to find a heartbeat. There's nothing they can do to save the baby at this point in the game, and I know that. I just feel so confidently that there isn't anything wrong. Last week, the baby's heartbeat was 161 during the sonogram and he/she looked good. So, I'm hoping this is just a case that the baby has found a nice, quiet, dark place to stay and he'll/she'll hang out there for a while. Lord knows the twins stretched out my uterus enough to make plenty of space for a singleton. So, anyway, if you're the praying type, would you just shoot some prayers up our way? Thanks.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Funny thing about weddings...

First, I just need to get this off my chest. I'M SICK! WAAAAAAAAAAAAH! I really, really don't do well when I'm sick. Blech. Can it possibly be the flu? My body aches, my head aches, my nose is running like a marathon runner, my throat hurts and my eye balls hurt. Meh. I want a spearmint tea and a hot bath.

Okay, so that's over. :) Thanks. We went to a wedding this evening, without the kids, and had a beautiful time. I think my hormones are just all over the place, though, because I teared up. Which, in and of itself is pretty funny, because of the surroundings. The party came out as the sun was setting...someone yelled out, "Couldn't you have done this *after* the Redskins game!?!?" You see, everyone (including the bride and groom) there, other than me, are huge Redskins fans. And, they were playing today, during the wedding. Once that was out in the open, the ceremony began. And, then, just as everyone settled down, the ice cream truck pulled up. LOL! You see, the ceremony was outside at an historical landmark. Behind the property, there is a huge little league field where softball, soccer, and baseball games were wrapping up. So, not only were there miscellaneous cheers throughout the vows, but the ice cream truck showed up and blared his music. Somehow, I still cried and I'm not even good friends with these people. They're all my husband's friends! Damned pregnancy hormones.

The reception was a blast with tons of food ranging from grilled shrimp, bruschetta, sesame seed chicken, potato pancakes, grilled veggies, chicken with white wine sauce and prime rib with au quite a few more random options (like Thai Peanut soup). There was an open bar in one area of the house and a make-your-own sundae bar on the other! My non-drinking husband? Yeah. He drank several large white russians and TWO Sam Adams Oktoberfests. Can you guess who passed out in the car on the way home from Baltimore? ;) I love you, honey.

We got to catch up with my husband's old roommates, whom I just love. If I had two single girlfriends, I'd be all over setting them up. He had a nice time and I enjoyed just sitting back and watching him have fun.

While we were gone, my mom watched Figgy and the Professor. Professor is back on track for those random fevers. I'm not sure where they come from, but it's beginning to concern me. For about a year now, at random times, he has been coming down with really high fevers out of the blue. Literally, he'll be fine one minute and extremely lethargic and feverish the next. Sometimes, it only takes one dose of Tylenol or Motrin and he's back to "normal" within an hour. During that time, however, he just lays on the couch sucking his thumb and softly moaning. That's what happened this evening. Mom got them up from their naps (2 hours, thank you Figgy) and he wasn't really ready to get up (as usual), but was very clingy. Mom said that as soon as she picked him up, she realized there was a problem. Not knowing where our themometer is or that I keep the motrin in the fridge, she ran next door to get some infant tylenol (thanks, K!). Sure enough, after 2 hours, he was shoveling food in and playing with his sister on the floor. Isn't this bizarre? I'm officially concerned and will call the ped in the morning. And, Figgy has taken to telling you when she's ready for bed. Tonight, it was 7:40 and she curled up with my mom and snuggled into her arms. Mom asked if she was tired and Figgy looked up at her with those big, brown eyes and said, "mm-hmmm" while pulling mom's arm towards the gate. The Professor hopped down off the couch, thumb firmly planted in his mouth, and ran to the gate and up the stairs. Poor little man...he so desperately needs his own room. I honestly think he'd sleep 20 hours per day if we let him.

We picked up our large pumpkins for carving this weekend. It was a quick trip to the small pumpkin patch in town and, after picking out a pumpkin for my husband, Ethan decided he wanted a large, white pumpkin. So, we have two pumpkins for carving and he is proud of his albino pumpkin. :)

Tomorrow is my 4-week ob appointment to check on Elvis. Hopefully everything is right on track and we'll talk about the reason I'm measuring 5 weeks ahead of where I'm at (the baby is right on track for gestation dates). I'm getting all sorts of funny looks when people ask me when I'm due. And, how do I explain to people that I don't find it funny when they ask if we're sure we're not going to be the next Jon & Kate Plus 8? Really, folks, it's not funny anymore.

I have a meme to do tomorrow! Thanks, merecat! I'm good at those. :)

Okay, sicky here is off to bed. Man do I wish I could just take a sick day tomorrow and stay in bed. Maybe I can talk my dear husband into letting me do just that, after my doc's appointment.

Good night, everyone!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

I can't believe we're celebrating another wedding anniversary today. It seems like an eternity, but just yesterday, at the same time. I clearly remember the anxiety of it all and the intense excitement; anxiety because of my husband's family and excitement because I was marrying the man of my dreams in one of our favorite cities! I do still wish we had left his family at home, but it worked out the way it did and to say that I would change it might mean so many other things would have changed. It was a magical day and I clearly remember thinking, "This is that man that every little girl dreams of; the knight on a white horse." We had such a good time that weekend. It is the best decision I've ever made - to marry him. I love him with every fiber of my being.

Sunday, October 5, 2008


Last year, with the twins only being 10 months old, we opted for a low key approach to pumpkin picking and it turned out quite nicely. In our area, there is a pretty well known farm called Cox Farms. They have a small kiosk area in our little town where they sell fresh fruits, veggies, flowers and pumpkins/Christmas trees in-season. A little farther out, they have their main farm. Every fall, they have a gigantic festival and we decided we'd take the kids this weekend to check it out. Jason's work sells discounted tickets to everything (hellllllo, cheap movies!) and we got our tickets for $10 cheaper. So, Saturday morning, we were off to Cox Farms Fall Festival!

We stopped to get an early breakfast at Silver Diner, where the kids proceeded to each eat one bowl of strawberries (EACH), 1/2 bagel (EACH), 1/2 waffle (EACH) and a few bites of mommy's spinach omelet. We got to the farm a little after 10:00 and were just overwhelmed by the number of things to do. It is, literally, an all day event. We also opted to leave the stroller in the car so that we could just enjoy ourselves and let the kids run. Can I just tell you all? That turned out surprisingly well! Our little kiddos did beautifully and loved walking around.

Our first stop of the morning was in the chicken house. Figgy and The Professor got to pet a chicken and, in true Figgy fashion, she gave the chicken a kiss. Awwww!

From there, the kids spotted one of the many slides at the festival and, much to form, slid down together. This was the only slide of the day because they were just too interested in the other sites and sounds. Plus, the slides were really more suited for older kids.

We quickly moved on from this slide to...CHOO CHOO (as Ethan would say)! I think we probably spent a good 20 minutes at the train, while the kids crawled in and out. Ethan could be heard throughout the festival screaming, "CHOOOOOOO CHOOOOOOOO!"

From the train, we headed down to see the goats and piglets before boarding what my husband would later deem, "THE best hayride EVER!"

Some of the sites from the hayride:

After the hayride, we were just in time for the kids to learn how to milk their first cow. They were quite pleased with themselves, though, The Professor wasn't too impressed.

Afterwards, we headed up the hill to play in the enclosed play area with all of the baby goats. Figgy met her match in a black billy goat and, after having a few words, , Figgy got a firm head butt on the toosh as she passed by.

Ethan enjoyed the sites around him... as Ellie tried to kiss every single one of the goats in the pen... Eventually, they all wised up to her and ran to the other side of the enclosure. She was determined to find them, however.... :)

The day ended with a trip to the complementary pumpkin patch (one for each paying adult) and mommy had to stop to pick up two magnificent mums for the front porch. On our long, lonely walk to the car through the big field, Ellie decided she was thoroughly exhausted and let go of daddy's hand so that she could lay down in the grass and go to sleep. Needless to say, they were both fast asleep before we hit the freeway for home. The Professor took a four and a half hour nap, Figgy, her customary 2 hour nap (no matter what!).

When asked to recall what she saw during her very busy day, Figgy had this to say:

And, just because it was a long day and he tends to get incredibly silly when he's overtired, this was Ethan shortly before bedtime. Yes, he did put that on his head by himself and played for quite a while like that.

What a magnificent weekend at our house! Anyone who says there's nothing to do in DC needs to have their head examined.

Friday, October 3, 2008

New words!

Well, I think we've officially stepped out of the baby phase and into toddlerhood. My little miracles are speaking and expressing themselves wholeheartedly. Elizabeth is into the "I DO!" of it all. Last night, I came downstairs to find my mom and husband sitting in the living room, pillows piled up all around one of the chairs, and the kids flinging themselves off, a la suicide mission. Figgy stood at the edge of the chair and yelled, "NONNNNNNE, TWOOOOOOO, TREEEEEEE!" and then she flung herself into the pillows, howling with laughter. The Professor stood on the edge, squealing and clapping furiously before throwing himself into the air. He has a pillow that has baseballs, footballs, basketballs and soccer balls on it and he brought it to me and said, "Ball!" Our word counts are as follows:

  • One (NONE!)
  • Two
  • Tree (Three)
  • No
  • I do
  • Oh no
  • Bye-bye
  • Daddy
  • Mommy
  • Oh boy!
  • I, too (I love you, too)
The Professor
  • Ball
  • Stuck (his favorite, by far...everything is stuck!)
  • No
  • Bye-bye
  • Mommy
  • Daddy
  • Truck
  • Dog
  • Kitty
  • Assorted animal sounds
Just when I think I'm never going to be able to snuggle up with one of them, again, Figgy will run to me and leap into my arms, kiss me on the lips and say, "I, too!" That's Figgy-speak for I love you. My little man still loves to snuggle up in my arms and suck his thumb. Can I admit to you all that I secretly hope he continues doing this well into high school? ;)