Thursday, January 31, 2008

Just Call Me Lucy

Wade says that living with me is like living out I Love Lucy episodes. He's right - I have the worst luck. Which brings me to Tuesday...

On Tuesday morning, I decided to take Clayton for a bike ride to the park. By the time that we got to the park it was really windy and cold. So, I let him play for a little while and then we headed home. On the way home, he was riding downhill (with the wind at his back) and started going REALLY fast. He lost control and lifted his feet off of the pedals. I sprinted as fast as I could. It was the worst feeling in the world! He was terrified and I couldn't get to him fast enough. He was headed towards a 4 way stop, and ended up wiping out right in the middle of the street. Luckily, there were no cars and he only scraped his chin a little bit. (Good thing I am a helmet nazi!) In true Clayton fashion, he wiped his tears and rode his bike the rest of the way home.

When we got home, I took the garage door opener out of my pocket and pushed the button. The door didn't go up. Strange... I pushed it again, and again, and again. No luck. I know what you are thinking, just call Wade and get him to let you in. Which would be great, except that Wade was in New Orleans. So... I sat on the porch totally defeated and on the verge of tears. Clayton stood in front of me motioning to his back. He said (in his best Diego voice), "Mommy, I got my rescue pack! I have the tools to help us!" I couldn't help but to laugh...

My nextdoor neighbor went to buy me a battery. But... it didn't work even with the new battery. So, I ended up calling the man that we are renting the house from. He left work and brought over his key to let us in.

So, the moral of the story is "never leave home without a real house key." Also, "never forget your rescue pack." :)

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Weekend Update

On Saturday we woke up and realized that we had nothing to do all day. (How often does that happen?!?!) So... we decided to take Clayton on the DART train that runs from Plano to downtown Dallas. He is still fascinated with trains, and loved the ride. I looked over at him and he was staring out the window. He was whispering, "Chugga, chugga, choo-choo, chugga, chugga, choo-choo..." over and over. What a nut! We got off of the train and ate lunch at Spaghetti Warehouse. Fun times...

On Sunday we went house shopping (for the hundredth time). I cannot even begin to tell you how frustrating that this process has been. After our experience with selling our last house, a miserable moving process, and renting this house, I am determined to live in our next house forever! So... being that I am going to live in that house forever, I want it to be perfect. I just thought that I would walk into a house and know that it was "the one." I thought there would be angels singing the Hallelujah Chorus and the I would be filled with a warm fuzzy feeling when I walked through the door. That hasn't happened yet. (Do you think that my expectations are a little too high?) Our poor realtor is so patient, but I know that he is probably ready to be done with us. And, to be quite honest, I am ready to be done with searching as well. Hopefully, the end is not too far away....

Thursday, January 24, 2008

A Tale of Two Schools

Today we went to story time at the library. Our library recently got a new playhouse, this cool thermograph thing (the kids press their hands on it and it changes colors), a distorting mirror, and a puppet show stage. After the librarian finished reading, the kids got to play. Clayton loves the new playhouse that they got. He, along with a few other kids, went straight to it. They were all playing nicely, so I started looking for some books to check out. I could see all the other kids playing with the stuffed animals and giggling. Clayton was sitting down on the bench inside the house with his hands in his lap. He said to one of the other kids, "I'm watching football on the TV. I'm watching the gig 'em Aggies." At which point he peeks his head out and says (loudly), "Mom, I'm watching the gig 'em Aggies - not the hook 'em horns!" He was grinning from ear to ear. Several of the moms around me started laughing. I said, "Do you think that I have sufficiently brain washed him?"

A related story:
We went to see Wade's grandparents this weekend. Clayton was talking all about the "gig 'em Aggies" and the "hook 'em Horns." Wade's grandmother asked Clayton, "Well, which one are you going to be when you grow up?" Clayton sat there thinking for awhile. You could almost see the inner conflict brewing about which parent he should disappoint. Finally, he said, "A Long Aggie!" I think this kid could have a future in politics. :)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Clayton's Guys, OCD in my DNA, & New Swanky Hankies Products

I severely dislike (can you tell that I am working on eliminating my use of the word "hate") stuffed animals. I am not sure exactly why... I think that it has something to do with my clean freak/germophobe medical background. I feel like they carry germs and allergens (even if you wash them frequently). Well... despite my dislike for these asthma-attack-inducing creatures, my kid adores the darn things. He started off sleeping with one or two stuffed animals. As time as gone by, he has acquired more and more that he must have in his bed before he goes to sleep. He calls them his "guys." At the moment his "guys" are: Shrek, Buzz, Woody, Rudolph, a big nanny (silky blanket), a little nanny, a white kitten, a little beagle (Sydney), a little brown bean bag dog (Brownie), and a turtle pillow. What is a girl to do???

I have always had a touch of OCD (self diagnosed, of course). Most of my quirks revolve around organization and structure. For example, my closet is color coded. My shirts are then sub-categorized into tanks, short sleeved, and long sleeved. I have backed off a lot on my cleaning and organizing since I had Clayton (who has the time for that anymore?). However, I am pretty sure that I have passed some of my OCD along to my offspring.

Clayton has a bed time routine that he is religious about. It consists of taking his medicine, brushing his teeth, having his "guys" fly to him (Wade throws them in the air into his bed - thus catapulting dust and allergens into the air), saying our prayers, playing the "Thank you Jesus for...." game, giving hugs and kisses, getting a sip of water, turning on his Fisher Price ticking clock, and turning on his fan (another allergy/asthma no-no). It only takes about 10 minutes, but it has to be done in order. He will immediately let you know if you miss a step. Oh my - he is doomed!

I have been making some new baby things for friends, baby showers, etc. I have been making bow holders for little girls and picture frames. Here are some of the new items. What do you think?

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Forget about A Face-Lift

In my never ending quest to fine tune my parenting skills, I am reading a new book. It is called "Shepherding a Child's Heart" by Tedd Tripp. I had heard about it from a couple of my friends that really liked it. It is mostly background info and explaining the biblical basis of the book thus far. (I am only on page 70.) But, today, I read something that caught my attention. It was in reference to correcting your child's behavior without actually touching their hearts. I think that it can apply to our behavior as adults as well, though.

"God does open-heart surgery, not a face-lift. He produces change from the inside out. He rejects the man who fasts twice a week and accepts the sinner who cries out for mercy."

I am dealing with some issues right now that are eating away at me. I realized today that I am looking for the quick fix (the face-lift). I want everything to work out the way that I have planned in my head. But... the fact is that the things that I am stressed about are really out of my control. I am going to try to give it up to the Lord and realize that I cannot "fix" it myself. (Thanks for the pep talk, Leigh. :))

In related news... we still haven't found a house. Looks like we will be spending yet another weekend looking. I woke up in a cold sweat this morning after dreaming about whether the Fed was going to drop interest rates again by the end of the month. Totally normal, right?!?!?

Thursday, January 10, 2008

The Next Lance Armstrong?!?!?

I am 99.9% sure that our kid is going to compete in the Tour De France at some point in his life. He has been riding his big wheel and his bike from Christmas all the time. He loves them! He talks about his Ga-day-go (translation: Diego) bike incessantly and begs to ride all day long. We have been riding to the community pool and back (about 1 mile). He cries when we get home because he wants to ride farther. It is good for me too, because that little booger is fast! We have to jog the majority of the time that we are following him. (I know, I know, me jogging?!?!?!... it's a rare occurrence!) But... it is good exercise for all of us. He has even learned how to back pedal to brake and how to steer around the corners. I just watch him and think to myself, "How is my little baby old enough to ride a bike?" He is just growing up way too fast (sniff, sniff). :) Can you believe that this kid is only 2 1/2?!?!

Monday, January 07, 2008

Fondue with 2521 ("the original cast")

During my last year at A&M I lived with an awesome group of girls. There were 5 of us total, and we lived in a 3 bedroom duplex. Our address was 2521 Ashford (that will be forever ingrained in my head). We had an absolute BLAST together! We were all very different, but we got along really well. Several years ago (we still can't remember the date of the first one - I think Dec. 2001) we started an annual tradition of meeting up shortly after Christmas to do fondue. It was Katie's idea, and she has always hosted the event at her parents' house. (They have a gorgeous home and are total fondue experts, so it is a great setup.)

This year the Stemmermann's were our gracious hosts, yet again. This year, however, they allowed us to help out a little more than usual. Katie did most of the prep work, and then she taught the rest of us how to combine the ingredients to make an awesome meal. It was neat to see what Mr. & Mrs. Stem have been doing "behind the scenes" all these years. It is a lot of work (and the amount of dirty dishes - oh my)! We always have cheese fondue, salad, meat & veggie fondue, and finish it all off with chocolate fondue. It has been 3 days, and I am still stuffed! Yum-0! We ate, talked, and laughed for 7 hours (until 2am). It was fun to relive our old college days and recount all of the funny stories. (Most of them were at poor Halie's expense - we love you, Hay-Bay!) This year it was the original 5 of us. Laura, who took my room when I left A&M, couldn't make the trip down from Connecticut because she has a brand new baby BOY. She was definitely missed, but we hope & pray that she is enjoying her new baby.

I love this sweet group of friends, and will always treasure the year that I got to live with them! Here are some pictures from our fun night together.

The before picture... Traci & CJ hadn't gotten there yet. They drove in from College Station and Cindy flew in from New Mexico. I'm telling you - this is one dedicated group!

Me and Halie making sauces.

"the original cast" :) (Check out what time it was! 1:15am and we were still goin' strong.)

Next year we will probably opt for paper plates and plastic ware. he he he

P.S. For those of you who are wondering, we are still searching for a house. My in-laws were kind enough to keep Clayton this weekend so that we could power house hunt. :) We looked at between 50 & 60 houses! They all started to run together after awhile. We have 3 good options, but are debating about what to do next. Oh, the drama...

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Huggies No More

A few months before Clayton turned 2, he starting using the restroom on the "big boy potty" every night before his bath. We made a big deal about it and gave him a ton of praise. When I took him to his pediatrician for his 2-year-old appointment, I told her about his new trick and asked her about potty training. She responded with, "It's way too early for that. The average potty training age for boys is 33 months." I smiled smugly and thought to myself, "Yeah, right. That is 9 months from now. We'll have this thing licked in the next couple of months." I couldn't have been more wrong...

Clayton would always go if we asked him, but would never initiate a trip to the bathroom. He would constantly say things like, "I'm going to wear stinky diapers forever." After months of trying to toilet train him, I was pretty sure that he may, in fact, wear stinky diapers forever.

After months of banging my head against the wall, we finally turned a corner last week. I don't know if it was the fact that he is now officially 33 months or that we were actually home all day for a couple of days. But... he is finally wearing underwear all day (and at night). Yipee!!! We finally conquered the biggest hurdle that we have jumped over thus far in our 2 1/2 years of parenting!

Clayton has wanted a Spiderman scooter since the summer. I made him a sticker chart in October and told him that when he went 5 days without an accident, he could get his scooter. Last night he collected his last sticker and today he got his scooter! He was so proud of himself! He has made several laps around the island in the kitchen already today. :)

How cute is he?!?!?!