Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Goodbye 2008

It's been real, it's been fun...blah blah blah.

Hello 2009!

Bryan and I will be putting the kids to bed by 8, then playing dorky games while attempting to keep our eyes open til midnight.

Hope all your plans are just as exciting. Happy New Year to everyone :)

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


I just put an ad on Craigslist to give my cat away. I feel like a traitor.

But honestly, he's peeing all over my carpets, and I have babies and kids all over the place, licking the floors, putting toys in their mouths that have been on the's just ew. I don't think it's an infection or anything, because, frankly, there has been more solid stuff left behind as well. I think it's an attention thing, and I don't have enough money for a cat therapist, nor do I have extra time to love on him and show him that he is my most favorite being of all time.

And to ease my conscience, I have to say that I don't pay him enough attention and he would probably be better off with some college person or old lady or single crazy cat person who would hug him and squeeze him and call him George.

He's really a good cat. I suck.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Wii-diculously Funny

Just a short post to tell everyone how much fun I had tonight watching extended family members play the Wii in my living room.

High point: Watching Uncle Tom play ski slalom with his work boots on, holding a beer.

Honorable mention: Watching Aunt Susie head soccer balls with really terrible accuracy (not that I do any better than's just fun to be a spectator!)

Friday, December 26, 2008

Ian's Blog

Ian got a new camera for Christmas from Grandma Mary and Grandpa Doug (thank you!!) and will be posting his photography along with detailed descriptions of his art.

I know that quite possibly Bryan and I, and perhaps his grandparents will be the only ones who look at it... But still, it's fun :)

So, visit Through Ian's Eyes if you need a chuckle for the day.

Christmas Day Photos

Christmas morning began at 5:30am (after we elves went to bed at 2...) when Ian came into our bedroom very distraught because he thought Santa was going to take his Woody doll away...(?) I have no idea where this came from. He got the Toy Story doll for his birthday this year, and all I can assume is that he had a dream that Santa was going to take it away. I reassured him that Santa was going to bring us presents, and that he would not steal any of his existing toys, and that he should really go back to bed until it was light out.

Chase woke up at a little after 7 (not bad!) and we tried to sneak downstairs and let Ian sleep in a little while we made coffee and heated up Grandma Maddex's famous coffee cakes (I made 9 of them this year, so we will have plenty to eat!). Ian woke up shortly after we went down the stairs with Chase yelling "DA DA DA DA DA DA DA DA!" all the way down.

We had lots of present unwrapping, with Ian acting as the elf who passes out everyone's gift, but often mistakes their names for his and ends up opening gifts that aren't technically his.

The incredible balancing act: eating and holding coffee cake with a squirmy one year old. Don't mind my full mouth. Also notice how we all have supercool footie pajamas on.
One of Chase's favorite presents was this red paper fluff. The best thing to do with it was to put it on Gaga's head.
Chase's new chair is the perfect height for standing on and reaching the piano. He serenaded us for a good part of the morning.
Chase got this cool Koala Climber from Santa. Papa is teaching him how to go up the slide...we'll have to break him of that habit later.
Ian empties his stocking, Chase looks on from his throne. Notice the giant gash on Ian's cheek-- he fell out of bed Christmas Eve and scraped his face on his toybox... And here I thought we lucked out because his fat lip was all healed in time for Christmas.

Ian's best Santa gift...the Razor scooter he wanted. I'd never ridden one before, but it is surprisingly fun to zoom around on in the kitchen! I was thinking maybe I could get myself one and then preparing meals in there would take a lot less time.Evidence that Uncle Scott was here :)

It was a really, really nice day. I think we all eventually got out of our pajamas by noon-ish, then commenced napping and snacking, and finished off the day with a steak dinner and roasted asparagus with this awesome artisan chardonnay oak smoked salt that Bryan got me for Christmas. YUM.

Oh, and I forgot to mention the incredible Christmas eve service we went to in Uptown Charlotte in the Belk Theatre. It was an awesome celebration, made even more special because we got to ride the train into the city :) They did all the traditional music, with Elevation's almost trademark Drummer Boy that looked like an exerpt from the Blue Man Group. Totally cool.

Anyway. Hope you all had a very merry Christmas (and everything else that you celebrate)...we sure did :)

Christmas Eve Photos

Ian picked out cookies for Santa and poured him a mug of egg nog. He set out an apple and a dish of water for Rudolf. Also, Gaga brought these cool luminaries to set out, too. Uncle Scott and Ian set them up. Sidenote: Scott is so good with the kids!

Going back into the house to get ready for bed and to listen for sleighbells. I just included this photo because you can see Chasey's new method of transportation-- this hands and feet crab-crawl thing. He goes super fast like this. It's so funny!


*Ian and Bryan were playing with his new Gator Golf game (thanks, Uncle Trent and Aunt Ella!) and Ian was finishing up his turn while Bryan got ready for his. Bryan asked Ian if it was his turn yet, and Ian turned to him with an exasperated look and said, "Patience, Dad."

*Bryan was watching a Star Wars review trailer for a video game, and Ian sat down beside him. He watched the galactic fighting for a little bit, then asked, "Why is that guy killing those other guys?" Bryan told him that it was just a game and they were just playing. Ian then asked, "Will he say sorry to them at the end?"

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Blasphemey?

For the first time this year, we celebrated Christmas with a birthday cake for Jesus. Church has become a more central part of our lives, and Ian is at the age where he is understanding what he is being taught at his preschool and Sunday school, so we thought that we'd start this family tradition. It's just nice to acknowledge more fully the central part of Christ's birth on this day.

Except that we aren't very good at it yet. Bryan picked out this cake (Ian wanted an ice cream cake for Jesus) and didn't realize that he bought the "Sinfully Chocolate" Carvel cake. Geez. It's almost worse than serving Devils' Food Cake...

Also, the birthday candles are hidden somewhere, and the only thing I could find to light was Ian's number candle from his birthday this year. So, Jesus is 3 today, according to our cake.

:) I think God has a sense of humor, though, right? If not, then we are all doomed.

Merry Christmas to all. More photos to come later...we had a really, really nice holiday. Hope you did, too.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

NT Results

I called today because I was antsy and it's been well over the week that they promised to have the results in by.

The nurse said that it came back great..."decreased risk". Whatever that means. I think that since it's not a true diagnostic test, the results can only be "increased risk" or "decreased risk". Right?

Anyway. I guess that's that. No further testing. Just sit around and continue to bake this baby.

It feels kind of good.

Have Yourself A Merry Little Earache...

So, I'm not the only one with ear issues around here.

Sunday Chase's left ear started draining fluid (which I'm told is a good thing-- it means his tubes are working). It continued to drain all day (yuck) and then Monday it started draining blood, too (extra yuck and minor freak out for me). Monday afternoon the right ear started draining, too.

As luck would have it, he had a follow-up visit with the ENT Monday afternoon, so after all kinds of craziness trying to get there (Gaga was watching the kids, I was shopping, I couldn't get home in time because of a car accident, she had to meet me at the dr office with the kids with very little notice, I had her cell phone because mine was dead, she has the same sense of direction that I do-- sorry Mom, it's true--, and I wasn't sure if we were ever going to make it but we did!!), we saw the ear doctor.

He said everything was normal...I mean, he has an infection, and it's settled in his ears, but the tubes were working and the bloody drainage was typical because the ears are irritated. So, we now have drops for his poor little ears and hopefully that will all clear up. He also offered to look in my ears (still infected, and probably won't pop until another week or so...gah!!) and checked out Ian as well (all clear!). I feel good about getting my copay out of that visit :) He is a very nice man.

Off to do the final last minute shopping today, pending everyone's ear health. Anyone have any ideas on how to sneak stocking stuffer gifts for Ian right past him at the store??

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Calling In Sick

Seriously, I have never been this sick for so long. First it was the 2 rounds of stomach bug, and 3 weeks later I get this killer cold.

It seemed like it was getting better, then got a whole lot worse. I spent this morning in the Urgent Care clinic (why do you always need a doctor on Sunday mornings?). I have an ear infection in my right ear and the left ear looks "angry", the Dr. says, and will probably develop into another infection. And I have sinusitis.

So I am on 10 days of heavy Augmenten. These things are bigger pills than my prenatals.

Bryan was awesome today, not only watching the boys while I took a nap with a hot compress on my entire face, but he also cleaned the dishes from the Thanksgiving leftovers that were still in the outside fridge from 3 weeks ago so I wouldn't have to do it. That's true love.

Here's hoping to a good nights' sleep.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Merry Green Christmas...(or Welcome to Your Christmas Card This Year)

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Ok, so sepia may not have been the best choice for this photo, but it looked kind of neat on my camera and I don't feel like retaking anything.Anyhoo. We decorated the tree was the most perfect decorating experience ever (except for a debacle involving the strands of lights, but I worked it out).

Ian helped without breaking anything (except for the star, which Bryan will have to weld back together sometime before The Big Day). He hung lots of ornaments (on the bottom quarter of the tree, most on one branch) and was just so excited to be decorating. I think perhaps it was the long anticipatory wait that fueled his excitement. Maybe I'll do this again next year.

Bryan did not complain once about wrapping the tree with lights, even though his hands and forearms broke out a little bit from the tree sap or whatever it is that he is allergic to.

Chase took a nap. I feel a little bad that he slept through the Christmas decorating, but really, he is at the stage where everything needs to be thrown or put into his mouth, boxes need to be dumped, and anything hanging anywhere needs to be pulled. Oh, and he can get to the stairs from the living room, so all he wants to do is go up and down them, which means that one of us has to stand behind him and catch him if he missteps or tries to sit down on one of them. So, it was kind of better for all of us that he napped.

There was even music playing in the background, thanks to Bryan's new techno-TV set up.

It was just nice today to spend time together and complete a project on my to-do list.

Merry almost Christmas!


Poor Ian and his big lip.

Yesterday he was trying to eat Chex cereal for breakfast, and he asked me in this pathetic little voice, "Do you think I could have something smaller for breakfast? I can't really open my mouth big enough to get these in..."

Procrastination Pays

This morning Bryan discovered that our Christmas tree had spontaneously fallen over last night.

There was water all over the carpet, but at least we hadn't gotten around to decorate it yet, so there weren't any broken ornaments.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ian Biffs

Poor Eenie. He took a spill on his bike yesterday and ended up with this:No worries, though, because after the first 10 minutes of fuss, he was fine (if not a little swollen).

This is what 29 looks like...

In case you were wondering how I celebrated my birthday (...and I know you all were!)...

Bryan got me these ginormous fleece footie pajamas because I am forever cold in this house. Now I can never complain again! (They also came with a package of peanut butter M&Ms so I can eat chocolate in my new pjs. Heaven!)

Also, he took Ian out shopping for me, and he picked out 4 balloons and a be-a-u-tiful Barbie. The Barbie came with a brush for her pink hair, and Ian was beside himself waiting for me to open it so he could brush her. :)

I got to sleep in, we went to a DSAC holiday party for lunch, ran some errands, and then went to Kami for sushi (Ian likes California rolls and Philadelphia rolls now) with my parents, and had uber-yummy ice cream cake for dessert.

One year closer to 30 is not so bad!

The Secret Millionaire

Has anyone seen this show yet? I watched it for the first time today and cried my way through it (ok, I know I'm hormonal and everything, but it is still really really good!).

If you haven't seen anything on it, it's about different multi-millionaires who are plunked into a poverty situation for a week with only a limited amount of money (today's guy had $47 to last him all week and had to pay for a hotal with that as well) and no possessions. They work along side people in the neighborhood and find people that they'd like to help. Then at the end of the week, they unveil themselves and give out giant checks to the people that they think are most deserving.

I was critical at first, thinking that it would just glorify the milionaire as this philanthropist because he gave away a teeny tiny part of his humongous fortune...but that wasn't the case at all. The show really highlights the people in the community that go to incredible lengths to help others. These people work with nothing to feed, clothe, motivate, inspire, and support others who need it most.

I kind of feel rotten watching it because I know that I could help others more, but I don't. I mean, I guess we give to the church, and they in turn give to many many organizations around Charlotte, but I feel like I could do more. Hm. I will be on the lookout.

So, last night was the season finale, but I'm sure there will be reruns going on somewhere on Fox. Check it out!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


I have some to post, but I can't find the cord to the camera.

Some photos to look forward to:
1. My birthday present from Bryan.
2. The fat lip Ian is sporting after a bike accident today.

More to come later :)

Still Here

We're all still alive.

Actually, it's not all that bad. Ian and Chase and I are swimming with a cold, but I think Ian escaped the worst of it, and Chase's croup (if that's what it really was) isn't too nasty. Although, the 'roid rages that he's been on because of the steroid treatment are quite amusing. He's been almost manic depressive...climbing all over everything, constantly moving, never focusing on anything...then BAM, down for the count. It's actually pretty funny.

I have Christmas shopping to do still, but I'm not going to stress about it because Gaga will be here on Monday and I will get out with the rest of the last-minute procrastinators and finish up.

There are cookies to be made still, but they are on the back burner, because really, who wants a virus-filled confection?

The tree still needs to be decorated, but there never seems to be a time when we are all home and one of us (um, me) isn't passed out in the recliner after dinner.

I'm choosing to focus on the positive:
*We are all (relatively) healthy.
*We have a warm house, with lights and food and mostly clean floors.
*Bryan has a job to go to every day.
*I'm not throwing up anymore.
*We all have clothes to wear (even if it would be really nice if someone, anyone, nominated our whole family for What Not to Wear.)
*I have good friends and neighbors to talk to.
*I have an awesome Wives Group and DSAC Mommies Group who support me in incredible ways.
*Our family is together for the holidays.

And so much more. There was a sermon in church a few weeks ago that focused on all that we have. The pastor asked us to raise our hands if we considered ourselves rich. Hardly anyone did. But then he continued asking questions about the things that we had in life that not everyone else does; in fact, many people don't.

Suddenly I'm feeling very rich indeed.

So, with being sick, and the funky weather and everything else that gets piled on my day to day life, I think it really helps me to stop thinking about what should be, and just focus on what IS.

End inspirational post.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Strike 1,2, and 3

Chase woke up coughing all night long. He sounds terrible- it's that barking, goosey cough. I took him into the pediatrician's office today and he has...(drumroll, anyone?)...croup. Blech.

So he's on a round of steroids, which he manages to spit out every time I try to sneak some into his open mouth. Wonder what the effectiveness rate does when he doesn't actually take the medicine?

Ian has been quiet all day. He's been a little stuffy, too, so I just let him hang out on my bed in front of the TV all afternoon after our office/pharmacy visits this morning. I just gave him a hug and noticed that he is BURNING UP.

And my scratchy throat from yesterday and this morning has turned into a full blown runny-nose, headachey cold.

So, yeah. Fun times.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Free Cat

Free to a good home. 6 year old short haired black cat. Loves attention. Very gentle. Good with kids. Neutered and front declawed. Is developing a habit of peeing on my carpet, right next to my LazyBoy. GAH!!!

Seriously. My carpets are far from what anyone would consider clean. There are spit-up stains and juice stains, a giant blue stain from when someone dumped a bottle of blue bubble potion in front of the couch, a permanent circle of purple silly putty smack in the middle of the room, ground in animal crackers and pine needles. Obviously, I try to run the vacuum, but some crap just won't come out, and I'm ok with that. We have little kids. It's going to happen.

But CAT PEE?!?! EWWW!!! OMG, my stomach turns just thinking about it.

Anyone have any good home remedies before I suck it up and call Chem-Dry?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

NT Screen Thoughts

I had the first trimester Nuchal Translucency screen Wednesday...which was weird. I wasn't offered this with Chase. I don't know if it would have changed anything, as even the level II sonos at 22 and 34 weeks didn't offer any clues as to his diagnosis.

I don't know if I even would have wanted the advance notice. I don't know if it would have been easier following his birth or harder for the remainder of the pregnancy. I just don't know.

It's different now, though. I'm not afraid of another diagnosis. I don't particularly want to spend another month (or two or more) commuting back and forth from the NICN. I don't wish to watch another baby of mine lay in that awful open bassinet with the heat lamps and the tubes and whatnot. Obviously, we all want healthy pink bundles of joy to take home and to match our perfect lives...but that just doesn't always happen. But I'm not afraid. But I do feel a little guilty for wanting everything to be "normal". Does that make sense? I'd just want to know, I guess. Although, not enough to do anything invasive. I'm just not down with all the needles and extra procedures.

Anyhoo. We had the NT Screen, and we won't know anything definite until they plug all my numbers and stats and measurements into the official formula and call me back in a week. But, the tech did say that everything looked "nice and thin and healthy" and she "doesn't have any reservations about this pregnancy" (which I thought was a little weird to say, but really, anything can be twisted into weirdness.)

She also said that there is a theory about determining the sex of the baby this's the "Nub Theory" I've since learned. If the said nub is perpendicular to the body, then it will be a boy. If it is parallel, then it's a girl.

...She said it was definitely parallel!! It's definitely a tentative, unproven theory, but still. Who knows? So, do what you want with that information, then go and vote on the gender prediction on the right side!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Big Ian

I know it's my fault, but Ian rarely gets himself dressed on his own. He's totally capable, he's just lazy about it. Seriously, he takes so long to do it, it kills me!! So I end up holding open his pants so he can step in, putting his socks on, and mashing his shirt over his head just to save my own sanity.

But today, after he took a bath, I left him upstairs with his pile of clothes while I fed William and Chase downstairs. After I fed the babies, I went upstairs to check on him, totally thinking that I would see his little naked butt still in my bed watching Lazy Town (sidenote: I sooo hate that show)-- but there he was, dressed and smiling at me!!!

Cue Hallelujah Chorus

I was so proud of him. He did it without whining, without me riding his every move, and on his own little time frame without driving me nuts. I know I need to let go more, and I am trying. I just think it's so awesome to see him take on more responsibility for himself.

Oh, and another thing, 2 days in a row he has helped me (actually helped me) unload the dishwasher!! Could a mom be any more proud??

Monday, December 8, 2008


It is 9:30 in the morning and I am eating leftover Chinese food.

And it is good.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

New Stroller Opinions?

I'm trying to convince Bryan that this is the only really big thing we will need for Baby #3, so it's worth the splurge...someone back me up!

I'm looking at the Joovy Caboose Ultralight Stand-On Tandem Stroller. I've pushed a lot of double strollers that are heavy and unwieldy, so this looks more compact and easy to maneuver. Also, Chase will hopefully be walking then, and he could sit in the jump seat in back, rather than being trapped in a seat all the time. And I think Ian would be able to hop on and share the back with Chase whenever he gets the lazies.

I have a double jogging stroller already, but it's just not practical for going to the mall or shopping or whatever. It's huge and hard to fold, it doesn't hold an infant seat, or fit through doors. Also, when Chase sits next to anyone, he spends most of his time trying to rip off his neighbor's lips, nose, or eyeballs. Ian can defend himself, but I just don't think an infant will be able to stand up to him.

So...does anyone have any experience with this stroller? It's a little pricier than some of the other models, but from the reviews I've read, it's worth it. What do you think?

*Oh, and it comes in Bronco Orange! Hello! That should be a huge selling point for him, right?

Christmas Party and Food Mishaps

First, I want to recommend to everyone to go find themselves a trustworthy teenager who will babysit your kids for a reasonable price. We finally have a 'regular' babysitter, who is always willing to come watch the boys, and I don't feel like I'm imposing on friends or family. It's nice.

So, anyways. Sarah came to watch the boys and we went out, dressed up, (I even wore heels!), and didn't worry for 3 straight hours if anyone needed anything to eat or if anyone needed a diaper change or a potty stop. It was glorious :)

My dessert making was not so great, though. I started making truffles, but ended up not having enough time to finish them. So now I have a giant vat of chocolate truffles makings in my fridge. Hmm. Wonder what I should do with that...?

I bought a cake from Harris Teeter and brought that. And I garnished it with Lindor milk chocolates filled with white chocolate. Which I ended up eating 8 of for breakfast this morning. And there were a hundred desserts there, so not much cake was eaten. Now I have a tray full of Moravian sugar cake that I need to dispose of. I think, rather than eating it with my chocolates, I will freeze it and save it to put in my baked french toast on Christmas morning. Mmm.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Holiday Food Dilemma- HELP!

Ok, so tomorrow is Bryan's corporate holiday party. He RSVP'd and said that I would make rum balls (his favorite, so I can't blame him!) but I don't have enough time to make them and then let them sit (they have to 'marinate' for at least a week to be good...).

So, here I sit, needing some inspiration to make something desserty and yummy and finger-food-ish. Any ideas?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Pop Quiz

What is actually happening in this picture?a.) Chase has finally mastered The Twist for the 50's Sock Hop we are attending in January.

b.) Chase is learning the proper form for Sumo Wrestling.

c.) Someone learned how to stand up on his own from the floor!!!

Big Boy Table

Chase graduated from the high chair to the booster seat a couple weeks ago. Actually, Houdini here uses his super bendy joint power to magically escape the buckle and the tray pushed into the tightest position in order to crawl out of the high chair and sit on top of the table.

Imagine my surprise when I looked up from across the room and saw him nonchalantly kneeling on the table, pleased with himself for finding a way to get at the crackers I had left just out of his reach.

So, now he sits at the table, in a booster, with a very very tight seatbelt. And I think he likes it better that way :)

Now that THAT's out of the way...Rewind to November's Feast

Ian had his feast at preschool the Monday before Thanksgiving, where all the 3 year olds sang the "Bernie" song in full Native American regalia. That's Eenie, 4th from the right on the top. He was standing next to Jorge, a very exuberant performer, who fell down once and knocked Ian about the head once with a spirited "HUH!" arm movement.

I was so proud of Ian, though. He not only sang the Huh! part, but also nailed the "yeah yeah yeah yeah" with full blown arm waving. Musical theatre, here we come!!
Here's a close-up of him in costume. Notice the Bronco themed headress (blue and orange feathers) and the t-shirt that I forgot to pay for and had to bring my $5 in after Thanksgiving break with my head held down in shame.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Best. Excuse. Ever.

Remember that Triathlon training? Way back?

And remember how I haven't been feeling good?

And remember that I was super tired? And cranky?
Yeah. The triathlon isn't going to happen. Because I'll be about 7 months along by March.

Yep. Knocked up. Officially-saw-the-baby-on-the-sono-today knocked up :)

So you all lucked out. Now you don't have to read any more posts about how far I biked or how much I hate running. But you will have to endure baby updates and a possible belly picture or two...