Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Das Boot


Grumble. Grumble.

The good news is that Nix is no longer encumbered by a full leg cast.

The bad news is that he's not healed yet.  Now he's in a walking cast boot thing for at least two more weeks.

He can take baths again (the boot comes off for the tub), although he screamed bloody murder when we tried to give him one tonight.  Before breaking his leg, bath time was a favorite of his.

He also doesn't need to wear it at night.  I anticipate that re-adjustment going better than the bath, but I've been wrong about everything else so far, so we'll see.

Trying not to feel sorry for him, and for myself.  There are much worse things.  But can I be irritated about this for a few more hours?  Thanks, you're the best.



Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Favorite Things Friday

Yes, I am posting my Favorite Things Friday post two days early.  I feel like I am late or behind on everything these days, and this gives me a sense of being ahead of the game for once.  I even considered naming it Favorite Things Sunday and counting it as four days early, but that just seemed ridiculous.

But before I get to the list, a quick update on Nix and his broken leg.  He has been doing very well with it overall.  During the day, he remains his bright and happy self, and he's even learned to walk on it, provided he can use something to help him balance.  In fact, I'd bet $100 that a scan would reveal he is already healed, but we have to wait one more week for the official word nevertheless.  His x-ray is on the 21st, and as long as it's looking good, the cast will come off.  Unfortunately, the cast is so cumbersome that it does interrupt our his sleep.  And he finds it quite hysterical to lay in his crib on his back and smack the cast against the rails, producing a loud banging sound and chipping away the paint on the gorgeous crib that our parents purchased when Bean was in utero.  So much for the one nice piece of furniture left in the house.  But it's memories, right?  That's what I tell myself.  Unconvincingly.

Now on to my list of 10 things that are making my life easier, happier, tastier, and better looking these days!
Jet-Puffed Gingerbread Marshmallows.  Bought these on a whim at the grocery store, and YUM!  Gingerbread is one of my favorite flavors of Christmas, and these do not disappoint.  My favorite is adding a few of them to classic Swiss Miss hot cocoa, the hotter the better because the men get all melty and flavor the drink.  There are other recipe suggestions on the bag, but making them dance around and then biting their heads off is good enough for me.

Method Laundry Detergent.  Maybe it's just me, but I still haven't figured out a good way to deal with the measuring cap on the huge container of detergent I buy at Costco.  It gets sticky and looks yucky and gets lost even though my Mom cleverly put a ladle holder on top of my washer to serve as its home.  This Method soap may not be the most economical alternative, but I think it's fun.  It's a PUMP.  Which means I can use it one-handed while holding a squirming toddler who is trying to "help" and there is absolutely no mess.  Oh, and it cleans our clothes, to boot!

Alterna Bamboo Smooth Kendi Oil hair treatment.  I am a sucker for those small free samples you get at Sephora when you spend too much money make small, reasonable purchases.  But very rarely do I actually buy the product after tossing away the used package.  This is one of those exceptions: I ordered this immediately!  I may be sporting baggy pajama pants and an old Michigan State t-shirt with a cow on the front, but if my hair is soft and silky, I can actually fool myself into thinking I look decent.  This stuff does the job better than any product I have tried -- my brush literally purrs when it runs through my hair.  Okay, not literally.  Maybe that's me purring.  But one of us is, for sure.

M*A*C eye paint.  After discovering this product years ago, I truly never -- NEVER! -- put on eye make-up without it.  I have a basic canvas color that I use as an eye base under my powder and liner.  My eye make-up looks almost exactly the same at the end of a long day as it does when I apply it in the morning.  Which is to say, I look like Cindy Crawford.  When she wears baggy sweats and a cow t-shirt, of course.

Starbucks new Everything with Cheese bagels.  Dang those tricky people at Starbucks.  Despite the fact that I dislike their coffee (much preferring a lesser-known local chain) and remain bitter that their overwhelming presence in the Seattle area chased out Dunkin Donuts, they find a way to keep me rolling through their drive-thru on a regular basis.  First it was their salted caramel hot chocolate.  Now it's these ridiculously yummy bagels.  Sliced and toasted with cream cheese, please!  Why am I wearing this bag over my head?  Let's not talk about it.

Amazon Subscribe & Save.  Oh Amazon, how did I ever live my life without you?  Shopping from the comfort of my own home, for products from oil misters to garden gnomes, conveniently rated by other users and with free shipping.  And now I don't even have to strain myself with the clicks required to search for and order products, you send them to my door automatically just when I need them!  Subscribe & Save isn't always cheaper than going to the store, but on certain baby products like diapers, wipes, and diaper pail refills, your prices can't be beat.  And I don't have to risk running into these people.

Butter London nail polish.  I discovered this polish in a boutique shop during a trip to a nearby fake Bavarian town that DH and I took for our anniversary in July.  I can't in good conscience recommend the locale (it felt sort of like the Walmart of fake Bavarian towns), but luckily you don't have to go there to get this product.  I no longer have the 100+ collection of nail polish colors that I did when I gave myself weekly manicures in college -- oh the leisure of youth! -- and I very rarely have the chance to paint my nails.  So it's nice to have a splurge like this when I do.  It really does go on like butter!  It is also "3 free," which apparently means it's made without three very, very bad ingredients.  I could tell you what they are, but then I'd have to kill you.  Let's leave it at that.

Skinny Cow Heavenly Crisps.  When I am grocery shopping, I generally avoid things that boast "low fat" or ''low sugar," because I would rather eat less of something that tastes delicious than eat more of something that tastes like dog food.  Even the premium stuff we buy for my pooch because of her butt-scooting problem.  But praise be to God when something has a relatively low amount of calories and satisfies that must-have-chocolate-or-I-will-tear-this-town-down-brick-by-brick-until-I-find-some craving that I get daily on rare occasion.  But this is true to advertising: the bars are light, crispy, heavenly, and have only 110 calories.  Good news, town!  You are safe.  For now.

Epsom Salt.  December is one of my favorite months, but this particular one has been a challenge.  From dealing with the kids to pregnancy pains to holiday stress, I have rediscovered my love of taking baths to relax in the evenings.  It doesn't take long, I can usually find the time once the kids are in bed to soak for 20 minutes.  The package sums it up:  "Beat Winter Blues. Simply dissolve two cups of Lavender Epsom Salt in a warm bath to provide soothing relief from stress and stiffness."  They also offer tips on using the salt in spring, summer, and fall -- but I'll leave you to read the bag and make the thrilling discovery about those seasons yourself.  Hint: they all have to do with adding the salt to your bath.
Sunbeam Dual Control Electric Blanket.  In the summer, one of my favorite things is crawling into cool, fresh, crisp sheets at the end of the day.  In the winter, it irritates me.  I finished my hot chocolate with gingerbread marshmallows, beat my winter blues with a salt bath, pulled on my snuggly PJs, and now it's time to cuddle up in bed and watch Seinfeld as I drift off to sleep.  Except I'm jolted out of my warm reverie by freezing cold sheets!  Or at least, I was, until we got this electric blanket.  I warm my side of the bed before getting in, and now I don't have to force ask DH nicely to warm my feet on his legs.  I also use it in the middle of the night to keep my side warm while I respond to the urgent requests of a certain unnamed 3-year-old who doesn't seem to have the same affinity for his own bed.  Maybe Santa needs to bring him an electric blanket.

What product is rocking your world right now?


Sunday, November 27, 2011

Breaking point

We are having quite a time over here in the Sunny Household right now.

Quite. A. Time.

First, let's start with the literal break.  Nix's sweet little leg.  He had just started up the stairs, on the first step above the landing.  He realized he had forgotten to flip the hall light on and off 20 times before heading up, so he turned to come back down to complete the important the task.  But he slipped off the stair and fell five inches onto the landing.

Managing, in the process, to fracture both the tibia and fibula in his right leg.

After spending a delightful evening at urgent care getting x-rays and a splint, then calling around for a couple of hours the next morning to find an orthopedist who could cast the leg of a 19-month-old, then taking him to Seattle Children's to finally get said cast.... now we will enjoy the four weeks of a completely immobile and uncomfortable, if still adorably sweet, Nix.  He is a trooper, but sleeping is a challenge (for all of us, in consequence), as well as trying to keep him occupied during the day without plugging him into the television for 12 straight hours.  And it is truly heartbreaking when his earnest, pleading face looks up at you and he grabs at his cast, "asking" you to please take it off.   Because he's too young to understand why it's there and when it'll be gone.

I don't mean to complain.

But waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!

I do feel like I have reached a rite of passage as a Mother of Boys, though.  Our first broken bone in the family.  I didn't pass out, so that's saying something.

Now the emotional break.  Namely: mine.

In addition to dealing with Nix's leg, which I realize is a relatively minor inconvenience, there are a few other things conspiring to deepen the divide between me and my sanity.

1) I am in the grips of swirling, irrational pregnancy hormones.
2) Bean is in the grips of the More-Terrible-Than-The-Twos Threes.
3) I have active twin 1.5 year olds.

On the bright side, I no longer live with the constant feeling that I could barf at any moment.  My stomach is still uneasy, and food is overall unappetizing.  Even my beloved chocolate sits uneaten on the shelf.  (If only I could bottle that feeling for post-pregnancy, right?)  But it's an improvement.  What remains is the lethargy, a short fuse, and wild swings of emotions.  I cried three times during a recent episode of Glee, and Bean's impressive temper tantrums are matched only by my own.  Let's just say I have less a "pregnancy glow" and more a "pregnancy growl."

Add to my inability to be calm and stable, the onset of the "Harrowing Threes" or whatever you want to call it.  I have read on countless blogs, other mamas lamenting how three is a much more difficult age than two.


I guess I had to pay my dues.  Bean was a ridiculously easy toddler.  And he still is a great kid, most of the time.  At preschool and his gym class, he intently listens to the teachers and follows all directions enthusiastically.  He is respectful of the other kids and loves to do artwork.  He is creative and thoughtful and his mind is absorbing new ideas like a sponge.  He loves to cuddle.

But then... things turn bad.  They turn bad quickly, and they turn bad severely.

I'll spare the details, other than to say it involves convulsing, crying, screaming, and possibly throwing a toy, if one is within reach.

And Bean gets pretty worked up too.

I realize what I lack, other than the fair amount of patience that I had when I wasn't gestating, is a plan.  A script.  Since the same scenarios play over and over, I need to know in advance how to handle it.  That should keep me calm, at the very least.  I'm working on that plan right now, wish me luck.  In the meantime, thank goodness my parents are nearby.

Meanwhile, the twins.  They are so hilarious, adorable, energetic, curious, and enterprising.  Which absolutely wears me out.  I ran into a mom with twin boys a few years older than the twins.  She told me that this age was the hardest for her.  Another twin mama with 6-year-olds told me the first year of mobility was the most difficult for her.

I am hoping that's true.

They are fabulous boys, really.  I adore them to pieces and find so much to love about this age.  And I have not forgotten how incredibly blessed I was to deliver them full-term without any health problems, I regularly thank God for that.  But they are exhausting right now.  They find so much more trouble to get into than Bean ever did at this age, and they want to be involved in everything we do.  The only thing harder, I imagine, would be having three of them.

Add in holiday stress... getting the tree up (when? how?)... buying presents (when? how?)... mailing cards (when? how?)... well, despite the fact that I absolutely love Christmas, and I'm one of the few people who doesn't mind seeing the displays go up at Target in October, I'm feeling rather grumpy about the whole deal this year.

But enough of my complaining.  You can see why I haven't posted in a while, and you're welcome!  Let's move on to something more fun that discussing the chaos that is my life at the moment.  Catching up on pictures of everything from a visit to the Museum of Flight, a soggy trip to the pumpkin patch (when my camera battery died after 5 minutes), playing at preschool, Thanksgiving, and general tomfoolery.  Enjoy!


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

12 weeks 4 days (and an early gender reveal)

From the outside:

From the inside:

I had forgotten how emotional it is to see your baby on an ultrasound.  The first peek we had, he was hardly more than a blob.  Other than relief to see the heart flickering away, I can't say I really felt connected with him being a baby.  But this time (at our sequential screen yesterday), he looked like a little person in there, flopping and wiggling all around.  We could even see him gulping down some amniotic fluid, which was one of the cutest, sweetest things I have ever seen.

It's official: I am completely in love with him.

Oh yeah, and I say "him" because it's a boy.  The tech was able to get us the money shot.  

I'm going to have four sons!!!!  Tee hee!