Friday, December 9, 2011

Santa Uses Amazon?!?

With having 3 kids, trying to juggle their activities and my to-do list is quite the feat. Last year and this year I have resorted to doing a lot of my Christmas shopping online.  I am also starting to do it for birthdays as well.  In the last few weeks packages have been showing up on my porch.  Sometimes I open them in front of the kids because I know exactly what it is and I don't mind if the kids see because it's not for them. But more often than not, I'm starting to squirrel them away in Santa's workshop (aka my guest bedroom). It's starting to look like a UPS/FedEx drop off in our guest room with all the packages I'm acquiring. And soon, probably this weekend, I'm going to have to start opening all the packages and really get an idea of how many gifts the kids have.

Last week when Bug and I pulled into the driveway after coming home from the gym, she noticed that, yet again, we have another package on the porch.  After I freed her from her car seat she starts jumping up and down and says, "Look, Mama! Another package! Another package! Open it, open it!"  I tell her, "no" and start to bring everything in.  

Bug: "Why not, Mama?"
DM: "I'm not going to do it now"
Bug: "Let's open it. I want to see it!"
DM: "Nope."
Bug: "Why not?"
DM: "I think Santa uses Amazon and there might be presents in there."
Bug: (In an awed hushed whisper) "Santa uses Amazon?"
Bug: (with squeals of delight)  "SANTA USES AMAZON!!!! YEAH, SANTA USES AMAZON"

Well it cured her curiosity. She no longer asks to open the packages, but every time a new one shows up on our porch, she says, "Santa uses Amazon." :)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Made It Another Week

Big Kids Playing Well Together
Last week Hubby was away all week (weekends included) for a business trip. This was trip #4 out of 5 from September until the end of the year. Next week is number 5 :(

However, this past week wasn't too bad. I still don't sleep very well when he travels, but the kids were fantastic while he was gone.  It's like a switch was flipped and the kids found out that playing together was a lot of fun.  The big kids spent a lot of time playing together and doing it well.  It made Hubby's time away so much easier on me.

During the time he was away Mr. Bananas learned to crawl and crawl well. He also learned to pull himself up and stand. He gets such a kick out of it.  He looks at me for affirmation. I cheer and applaud and the starts waving one hand in the air to cheer with me. He also slaps both hands on whatever he has used to haul himself up.  He's so proud of himself. It's sad that Hubby has to miss these milestones, but I try to send pictures.

My parents were a big help by coming over twice last week to help with bedtimes.  My aunt and uncle also came over to give me a hand with the house. When Hubby is away I just don't have time to clean up the house. I'm so busy trying to do everything else, I don't have time to keep up with the housework.

Getting Along
I survived his week away and I dread next week. But I know I can do it and I look forward to him being in town before Christmas. And I will enjoy his time home before he heads out in February for a 2-3 week business trip.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Dinner Conversation and Entertainment

Hubby is gone for another week long business trip. He left Sunday night and he'll be back Saturday night (ugh!).  It's been over 2 years since he's been gone for so long on one business trip.  He actually has another one sometime next month and then in February he'll be gone 2-3 weeks. Yikes!

When he's away I try to find my own routines. I get dinner on the table earlier and get the kids to bed much earlier.  Last night my parents came over to give me a hand. They spent time with the big kids playing games before giving them their bath. While my mom bathed the big kids, my dad spent some one-on-one time with Mr. Bananas. I cleaned the house.

By 8 o'clock last night all 3 kids were in bed and my parents had left.  I finally sat down for my dinner. When it's just me, I find it easier to feed the 3 kids and then eat dinner by myself after they are in bed. While the big kids eat, I feed the baby.  So at 8:30pm I had reheated a bowl of soup and decided to watch the Sing-Off while eating my dinner. Wouldn't you know that not 2 minutes into my solo dinner, my daughter came downstairs?

DM:  Buggy what are you doing down here?
B:  You know what I'm doing.
DM: I do?
B: Yes. I'm watching tv with you.
DM: You are?
Buggy sees that I'm watching the Sing-Off: Oh, and I'm dancing.

While the contestants are singing, she gets off the couch and starts dancing.  When they finish and the audience is applauding, my darling daughter starts bowing repeatedly and saying, "Thank you, Thank you, Thank you" Humble, isn't she? (Ms. C, I think she is a natural performer! It's a good thing I have her taking dance classes at your studio!)

At the next commercial I start to carry her upstairs. I'm almost to the top of the stairs when I see that the gate is in place and locked. Um????
DM:  Bug, how did you get downstairs? The gate is locked?
B:  I'm little. I'm 3, but I'm still little. I'm still little and I fit! I'm 3, I'm little, and I fit! (The whole time she is giggling).

The little stinker crawled underneath the gate and walked downstairs.

I finally got her back in bed.  It's never a dull moment with my little performer...

Friday, November 25, 2011

Lola's Birthday

This year Lola's birthday landed on Thanksgiving.  My kids love birthdays and they were really looking forward to celebrating my mom's birthday.  The night before we weren't sure if we would see my mom for her birthday. My mom hadn't decided whether or not she would join us for her birthday breakfast. While my husband and I were discussing the schedule for Thanksgiving day, my daughter very excitedly said, "And we'll celebrate Lola's birthday!" I looked at her and said, "Baby, I don't know if we'll see Lola tomorrow. We'll see."  She very dejectedly put her head on the kitchen table and sighed. She wasn't happy that she might not see her Lola on her birthday.

My mom decided to come over and we did our traditional birthday breakfast in the midst of getting ready to host Thanksgiving dinner. The kids were so excited and I think my mom enjoyed herself. She is a tough lady to shop for because she really does have everything. I crocheted her a scarf and the kids made birthday cards. They were so excited to see her.

Mom's not real big on birthdays for herself or for anyone. She doesn't want anyone to fuss over her, but I think that having grandkids trumps that wish.  They want nothing more than to celebrate her and pour love all over her. I'm glad she let them do that. Happy Birthday, Mom!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Almost Wordless Wednesday--Cooperative Play

Nothing warms my heart more than when my children play well together.  I love when they cooperate and share.  Last week Buggy had an assignment for her bilingual class. She was supposed to write and illustrate a book to share with her classmates.  We co-authored a book titled, My Family.  She told me what to write and I wrote it for her.  She then spent her time illustrating each page.  When her brother came home from school, he was excited to learn that she was making a book. Boogie loves to write and make books.  He offered his help and the two of them spent quality time illustrating her book.  Buggy was thrilled with the extra attention from her big brother, and Boogie was happy to lend his expertise to help her out.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Another Soccer Season Gone By

Boogie played soccer this Fall. We try to involve the kids in activities from the our church. Our church is part of a Soccer League with other parishes in the vicinity. For $40 you can't beat 8+ weeks of activity.  Granted it took me about 30 minutes (with traffic) to get to practice every week and there were games every Saturday...but overall it was a good experience.

It was a way for Boogs to run around and burn off some of his pent up energy.  It was also good for him to refine his skills and to focus on one thing.  In the beginning it was a lot of running around, not understanding the rules, and chaos as 5-7 year olds chased a soccer ball. As the weeks progressed, I noticed that Boogs was becoming more focused, was able to participate more, and refined his skills. By the last few weeks they started putting him in the goalie position and he was becoming better and better at defending his goal.

I'm a big fan of exposing our kids to as many activities as possible so that they can be well rounded.  Soccer was just one part of that. Bug is already excited for when she will be old enough to join the soccer team.  As our kids continue to grow I look forward to finding out what their favorite activity is and going with it full force.

I, unfortunately, had to miss the last game as I was prepping for the birthday party, but Hubby said that Boogs scored a goal. I know that totally made his day!  Boogs also received his trophy and was very excited to share it with me.

However, between dance and soccer, I am getting an inkling of what our future holds as Hubby and I coordinate our schedules and take the kids to their activities.  I'm sad that I can't attend every event, but it seems that our kids don't mind when Hubby or I can't be together at the same event because the other is taking care of someone/something else. They seem to go with the flow and that helps a lot!

I am grateful that our parish offers a lot of activities for our kids:  religious ed, t-ball, soccer, summer camp, choir, scouts, etc.  It helps us to be better connected to the church and it's members. We are part of one body.

A Veggie Tastic Birthday

My Pinkalicious Girl 
My daughter turned 3 a few weeks ago, but we finally celebrated with the extended family this past weekend. We hosted the birthday celebration for Bug and her cousin B. who is 3 weeks older.  Between scheduling conflicts and Bug coming down with the stomach flu last weekend, this was the soonest we could celebrate.

We decided to go with a Veggie Tales theme this year and it was a lot of fun.  Bug enjoyed having her family around to celebrate though when I told her that the family was coming over she said they were there to celebrate her cousin's birthday. She didn't realize they were there to celebrate her as well.

I had a lot of fun creating her cake (super easy this time!). We made her a Bob the Tomato cake with strawberry cake mix. I tried looking for red velvet, but since that was available at our store we went with strawberry. What better for my girly girl who loves pink. We even had pink strawberry ice cream which was a big hit with the girl cousins.

My uncle watching the kids hit the pinata
As with every birthday I tend to go bigger than the average bear.  I like a good celebration and I love celebrating the births of each of my children.  Hubby made a super cool poster for the kids and I put together a slide show of the kids.  We had a ton of food and my oh-so-favorite empanadas from our local Filipino restaurant. YUM!  My mom also made lumpia and pancit to round out our honey mustard chicken and fried rice.

It was neat to see how much the 3 year olds have grown.  As with any family gathering it was very busy, but a lot of fun.  The kids play really well together as they have gotten older, the adults are able to relax a little more.

The party was a hit and we enjoyed celebrating another year.

Our Bob the Tomato Cake

The 3 year olds

Mr. Bananas is 9 months old!

Our dear Mr. Bananas turned 9 months old recently. I'm still amazed that this charming little boy is a part of our life.  He is full of fun and giggles.  He still adores his big sister and she continues to be a tremendous help with him.  Even his big brother is starting to realize that Mr. B. can do more than just sit.  So Big Brother has been playing with him:  rolling a ball, lots of hugging, playing in the same vicinity. It's been great.

Mr. Bananas continues to be on the small side. His weight at his last checkup was only 16lbs 1oz.  Just 7 pounds than when we was born. I'm not overly concerned as he continues to play, listen, babble, crawl, eat food, and smile at us.  His pediatrician is concerned that he keeps dropping on the chart, but as one of the SILs pointed out he might take after my Filipino side and just on the smaller side.  I've tried to do what the doctor asks by feeding him all the time, but really, Mr. Bananas is not all that interested in being stuffed with food. But I keep trying.

His newest skill is communicating with us in sign language.  Hubby has been teaching him simple signs: all done, more, and please.  Mr. B. likes that he can tell us when he's done with his meal so that I don't keep shoving food at him.  I like we have continued the trend of teaching our babies sign language.  Boogie learned it and still uses a few signs when he speaks to us. We taught Bug when she was a baby, and now it's Mr. B.'s turn.  I like it and I like being able to communicate with him a little better.

Mr. B. continues to crawl and while most of the time it's an army crawl, he's starting to move on all fours.  We notice that he uses his right leg to push him along.  He likes to try to keep up with his siblings, but if they're too fast, he will sit and holler until someone shows him some attention.  No one is ever too far away.  One of his favorite routines is walking Boogie to school.

When Hubby comes home from work, Mr. B. starts to flap his arms and becomes very excited to see his Daddy.  Just as with the other kids, Daddy is a favorite in the house.  Mr. B. is getting a little extra attention from his Filipino relatives and he's enjoying it immensely.  Whenever they are around his feet never have to touch the floor and his carried adoringly around the house.

Life continues to be a joy and we enjoy our newest member immensely.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Pumpkin Carving

One very well cleaned out pumpkin
With my Filipino relatives being here, my husband has been excited to share with them some American traditions.  He constantly wants to share with them new experiences such as non-Filipino food, taking the bus, carving pumpkins, trick-or-treating, Thanksgiving....the list can go on!

The most recent experience he was able to share with them was pumpkin carving. Before Halloween we had picked up several pumpkins.  I'm not very creative and I remember when I was little and my mom not really into pumpkin carving because of the mess. As a result, I like the end product, but I'm not a big of fan of the process to get the carved pumpkins. On the other hand, my husband is very creative and doesn't mind a mess, so he enjoys this Halloween tradition.

Cleaning out the pumpkins and setting aside the seeds to roast them
One weekend before Halloween we invited my extended family over for breakfast and pumpkin carving.  Everyone enjoyed their time and I was pretty impressed with their creativity. It took the whole afternoon and everyone got into it. They listened to music, chatted, and were intensely focused on their creations.  I am so grateful for my husband wanting to share new experiences with my family.

My kids and their cousins with the completed products

This is What I Call Sexy

Sometimes a way to a woman's heart is not jewelry, flowers, or even chocolate...sometimes it's when our significant others see through the turmoil and craziness of the day and lend a hand when it's least expected.  (Though, Hubby, if you are reading this, I wouldn't say no to a new pair of earrings or a pair of new shoes!)

But seriously, sometimes what makes me fall more madly in love with my husband (if that's even possible) is when he lends a hand when I least expect it. We both have our list of chores and "to-do"s and we go through our usual routines. 

But when my hubby steps outside his usual routines and chores and helps me with one of mine, "wow!" It seems that with a new baby the chores have gotten a little harder to complete and my energy isn't what it used to be. I blame old age for my energy level.  I've also been preoccupied late with other things and I have been putting my energy and time in trying to help my extended family with job interviews, applications, etc.  I don't mind doing it, but since it's a new routine, it shifts what I've been able to do.  It's appears being preoccupied makes me tired even if I'm not actively doing something.

But anyhow, I was sitting back one night crocheting and watching television when my husband came down the stairs with a basket of clean laundry and started folding clothes. He had already put the kids to bed and cleaned up after dinner.  I was touched that he saw through the craziness of my days and decided on his own accord to help me with the laundry when all I wanted to do was chill out after another busy day with the kids. That's what I call sexy!

Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect...and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers. (1 Peter 3:7)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Mama's Helpers

Buggy and I seem to be in sync. She can pick up when I need help and she automatically does it.  Or maybe it's that she's really more in tune with her baby brother. Maybe that's what it is.  When Mr. B. wants to play she  will find the toys that he can play with (nothing small) and sits next to him. She sings, trades toys, and talks to him. He'll babble at her the whole time, excitedly telling her about his day (all in baby talk of course).  Dinner time tends to get a bit hairy.  Kids are hungry, I'm running around trying to clean off the kitchen table from art projects and homework assignments, and Mr. Bananas has decided that he is absolutely, without a doubt hungry, and he wants you to know it!

I'm getting better at getting dinner started earlier. But there is very little time between the time Boogie finishes his homework and I start dinner that it's a gray area if I have the time to feed Mr. B. or if he is even hungry.  Sometimes he likes to let me know right when I'm in the middle of things. 

The other night I tried to hand him a bottle in the hopes that he would be able to hold it on his own and keep him occupied until I could start dinner, and have a few minutes to feed him solids while dinner cooked.  Buggy says, "Mommy, I'll feed him." I agreed distractedly, only to find her a few minutes later, precariously perched on the edge of her chair, leaning over the high chair, putting the bottle in the baby's mouth. He was happy and quiet and she was down to business about helping her brother. It was really sweet and very helpful. I think she will be my right hand as she grows up. She seems to anticipate my needs and swings into action even at the tender age of three.

Boogs can be just as helpful. Now when we all drive somewhere together, I do not have to unbuckle Bug from her seat when we arrive at our destination. Boogs will unbuckle himself, unbuckle his sister, and open the door, and wait for directions.  It certainly makes my life a little easier as I try to round up the baby and all the stuff that goes with him ;)

I'm one very blessed Mama.

My Pensieve

I started blogging today and my eldest sat next to me on the couch asking what I was doing. When I explained that I was writing, he asked who I was writing for and why I wrote.  I told him that I wrote for myself and that my head has so many thoughts in it that I liked writing them down. Once they were out of my head and on (digital) paper I was able to concentrate better and focus on the more important things in my life, like my children.

Overhearing our conversation, my husband chuckled and said, "So it's like your pensieve."  I guess that would be right :)  A very public pensieve I guess, but my pensieve nonetheless ;)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Two Vikings and a Monkey

It seems every year we decorate just a little more for Halloween. Part of it is that we have children and there is a reason to decorate and of course, I'm not working so there is time to decorate.  And every year I start thinking about next year's costume.

When Boogie was born his Aunt M. bought him a sweet pumpkin costume. He wore it when he was a baby and Buggy wore it for her second Halloween. (Her first Halloween she was just 9 days old).  I had planned on putting it on Mr. Bananas this year, but Hubby found a cute monkey costume and he couldn't resist.

This year the kids had decided to be characters from their favorite movie, "How to Train your Dragon."  I did look online for any ready made costume, but I'm not one for spending tons of money on a costume that will be worn once maybe twice if I'm lucky. And when I say tons of money, I mean $20-$25 per costume. I know it's not that much, but for something only worn once and for just a few hours, I can't justify it.  So after looking at the crazy prices for the costumes I decided to improvise and make my own costumes putting together pieces from different outfits to make a costume.

The result was:

 "Hiccup":  green fleece pants, snowboots, a green shirt (I bought for $5) that I cut and sewed the "lacing" to make it look like the real characters shirt, a wide piece of ribbon for a belt, and a leather vest given to me by my SIL (Thanks, L!) to replace the v-neck sweater vest I was originally using for "hiccup's" vest, and a cardboard shield (that Hubby made after walking in the door at 11:30 at night from a week long business trip so that it would be ready for Boogie's Halloween parade the next morning).

"Astrid":  All the pieces I did buy, but I can use separately as pieces to real outfits she can wear outside the house.  1 "magic" shirt (that stretches to fit any kid any size), legwarmers for her arms, pleated skirt, wide black headband for a belt, black stretchy pants, boots,  an orange headband, and a cardboard battleax Hubby made the day of our October snow.

And of course, Mr. Bananas, had the only non-homemade costume:
For the Godparents: Love, Mr. Bananas
One of my favorite pictures, because of the look of delight on Buggy's face when Boogs held her hand in his school's Halloween parade.
I love Boogie's expression in this one.

Buggy grimaced like the viking she is in every photo!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Ooh, La, La, Beauty Day

On Saturday, my middle child, turned 3 years old.  She is my only girl and I have enjoyed doing some girly things with her.  On the eve of her birthday, I was reminiscing about her birth. The labor was easier than the boys, and she was my easiest delivery.  Three pushes in 15 minutes and she was out.  So far, in a lot of ways, she's still my easiest child. If she falls, she gets right up. She'll often say she is "tough." But she'll be tough while running around the house in a tutu, carrying a purse, and wearing a string of (fake) pearls.  Gotta love it.

I decided to have a girl pampering day with my sweet Bug.  As one of her presents I bought her a Fancy Nancy book and we read about how Fancy Nancy pampered her mother with an Ooh, la, la, beauty day.  But before our pampering began, we went to church for the monthly church cleaning and cleaned God's house. The other volunteers were awfully sweet with wishing her a happy birthday, setting up a candle in a ring of donuts, and praying over her. She loved the extra attention, but was a little shy.

After church cleaning, we went to get her a haircut. She often complains when her hair falls in her eyes that she needs a haircut. I took her and had 3 inches cut from her long tresses, and yet, it's still long. My beautiful Rapunzelian beauty still has long hair, but still short enough that it won't fall her into her food as easily.  Daddy and Boogie met us at the barber and everyone else got a haircut except for Mr. Bananas and myself. We stood on the sidelines checking everyone else out.

After haircuts, we took the kids to a quick lunch across the street and spent a little time together. Especially important since we were going in different most of the day and boys wouldn't get to see us as we were continuing with our "Ooh, la, la, beauty day." After lunch,  Bug and I took off to get our nails done. She chose a dark purple and asked for white polka dots.  Everyone in the nail salon commented on the little girl getting her nails done.  Every now and again, Bug would say, "oooh, la, la."  It brought a smile to my face.  We even turned on her chair so that she could get a massage while waiting for her nails to dry. So much fun. After getting our nails done (mine are a matching purple with white polka dots), we headed home. My little girl had so much fun that she fell asleep in her car seat on the way home.

The evening ended with dinner at the kids' favorite restaurant, pinkalicious cupcakes & ice cream at home, and the opening of gifts.  You can tell my Bug is a girly girl when she gave a high pitched squeal of delight when she opened one of her gifts and found Princess Tina glove, purse, and a pearl necklace for her play dress up clothes.  We rounded out the play clothes with a few books and a new piggy banks.  My mom gave her a very cute purple polka dot dress, complete with fancy purple boots. She actually flung the clothe out of the bag to get to the purple boots with another squeal of delight. What can I say? She's LOVES shoes, just like her mama.

It was a delightful day and I had so much fun spending time with my best girl.  Ooh, la, la!

Buggy's Birth Day

Buggy's 1st Birthday!

2nd birthday

Buggy's 3rd Pinkalicious birthday

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Rainy Days

It seems like it has been raining every Wednesday or more often than I would like.  The little kids and I walk Boogie to school every morning. The walks to school are usually a little stressful because I'm trying to get Boogie to school on time, but the walk back to the house is usually a lot more mellow.  I like that we can walk to school and I simply cannot justify driving Boogs to school since we are a 10-15 minute walk from the school.  So even if it's raining, we'll walk to school. I zip the baby inside my jacket with his head sticking out, and have the big kids put on waterproof/resistant jackets.

However, my jacket is okayish. If I insist on walking in the rain, I really need to invest in a good rain jacket.

Here are a few cute rainy day pictures taken by Hubby:

Boogie with his umbrella

Ladybug with all of her raingear

This ladybug LOVES the rain. 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A "Blue"tiful Girl

Ever have one of those "Oh, Crap!" moments?  I totally did on Saturday.

My dear friend A. asked if I would watch her daughter last Saturday so that she could finish finish painting her new home so that they could move in by the end of the month. I readily agreed. C. is Bug's age and they get along well.  They like to play with each other. C. also LOVES Mr. Bananas and wants to spend time with him.

The day went pretty smoothly until naptime. I completely forgot that Hubby our craft rolling drawers in the guest room filled with stamp pads, markers, paints, glue, etc.  It had been in the garage for years. Hubby moved it into the foyer where it sat for a couple of weeks until he finally put it in the guest room.  The whole time that it sat in the foyer, my kids never touched it. If they knew what was in it, they probably would have.  But it became a fixture in the front hall for so long that my kids were never interested.

At nap time, C. and Bug went to their respective rooms fairly easily. I thought, this is great, "Easy, peasy."  Having had little sleep the night before, Hubby encouraged me to grab a quick nap while the girls and Mr. Bananas were napping.  He stayed up with Boogs.  I woke up hearing C. say, "Hello? I'm ready to come out. Can someone let me out?"  I went to the guest room and was greeted with this "blue"tiful face:

Auditioning to be a smurf
HOLY CRAP!  was my first thought. My second thought was, "Your mommy is never, ever going to let you come over again." My third thought was, "What did you do?????"  

Her hair is very smurfy.
Poor C. found a blue stamp pad and put it on like makeup all over her face and hair. There is a full length mirror on the door so she definitely knew what she looked like.  When she saw my face I think she realized that this was not a good idea.  She started to whimper a little when I said, "Oh, C! What did you do?" I definitely did not raise my voice, it was just this hushed awed whisper and I think she thought that was a little worse.
We put her in the bath and the water turned oh so, so, soooo blue.  We were able to get most of it out of her hair and face. She ended up looking like she was wearing blue eye shadow by the time I was done washing her face.  There is still a blue ring around the tub. I have to say, she was a pretty good sport considering she had to have an impromptu bath.  Most of the blue came out of her clothes, rug, walls, comforter, tv, file cabinets, desk, and chair.  whew :)

Her mommy still likes me and says that "yes, C. can come over again. " But I was mortified that while in my care, this little darling became a Smurf.  I'm grateful for forgiving friends who have a sense of humor.  

I love you, Smurfette!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Mr. Bananas' 7th and 8th months

Mr. Bananas at 7 months
Our sweet baby turned 7 months old last month and our life has been so crazy that I never got a chance to update his life.  So here is the lowdown on his 7th month:

--said "Mama" for the first time at 7 months.
--still below weight and is at the 4th percentile
--doctor still wants me to feed him as much as possible (as if I'm not already)
--is sleeping through the night. Marc Weissbluth's book on sleep habits was the best $9.99 I spent on Amazon.
--not only is he sleeping better, but in my opinion he is eating better.  I still have to avoid dairy, but it appears if I avoid straight dairy, he's definitely fine. If I consume products that have dairy in them (crackers, breads, etc), he's okayish. Not great, but not horrible.
--He refuses to nap while we are out, but will readily go down when he's supposed to if we are at home.
--I swear his favorite time of day is when we walk Boogie to school. Especially if he's in the stroller. I never hear a peep from him. It also makes him tired and he's ready for a nap when we get back from our walk.
--His brother and sister still adore him and are willing to give him a toy when he's sitting near them on the floor.
--If he's fussing at a meal time, he will stop long enough so that we can say grace.
--He loves when we sing.

8 months
Our sweet baby turned 8 months old yesterday.  He is such a happy baby. It helps that he is sleeping through the night now, and he is taking regular naps. Sometimes we cannot get in our required 2 naps a day, but if he gets in at least one, he still does pretty well. But the biggest difference is his ability to sleep through the night.  The day after he turned 7 months old, he grew in his two bottom teeth.  He also started shaking his head "no." He smiles when he does it. I think he just likes the new perspective of shaking his head around.  He is desperately trying to crawl, but he can't.  He lies with his belly on the floor and move all of his limbs. When he realizes he is not going anywhere, he starts to yell.  Recently I have found him in a pike position or maybe it's downward dog...He will also get up on all fours and start to rock. He's close, but not quite at the point to start moving anywhere.  He's eating table food now.  Soft fruits and veggies. Hubby is still putting olive oil in all of his baby food as prescribed by the doctor to help Baby add weight.  I think it's gross, but I think it's working. He feels heavier.  Life is a lot more pleasant. I think it helps that I'm getting a full night's sleep most nights. The nights I don't are attributed to my soon-to-be 3 year old getting up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. She's close to nighttime dryness...but I think I would rather have the sleep. HA!

All is well and I look forward to what the future holds.  Mr. Bananas continues to be a big flirt and will happily smile, giggle, shake his head "no," or bat his eyelashes at you. However, I think my absolute favorite thing right now is when someone speaks to him and if I'm holding him, he'll smile at them and then snuggle his head into my neck. LOVE!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

His "Lorelai Gilmore"

J. and Z. during the naming ceremony
Last month I attended the baby naming ceremony for my best friend's third baby/first son.  I love the baby naming ceremony because I hear the background and reasons why they chose the name that they did for their child.  I love the history behind each one. With each baby naming, J. & J. never reveal the spiritual mentor/godparent for their child until the naming ceremony.

This time around, I was chosen and I was beyond touched by the sentiment, love, and trust that they had for me to be Z.'s Godmother. I had tears in my eyes when I heard my name. I already knew that I loved this little guy before he was even born, but now there will be a stronger bond between us.  He was already designated to be Mr. Bananas' best friend.

As J. said after the ceremony, I am now forever tied to their family. That's a pretty good place to be.

The baby naming ceremonies always reminds of the episode of Gilmore Girls where Lane asks her best friend Rory to be the "Lorelai Gilmore" for her sons. Lane asks Rory to be there for her sons, to be there for them just like Rory's mom (Lorelai Gilmore) was there for her during her growing up years.  To be the other mom to guide the kids when the kids don't want to hear what their mom has to say.  So while my official title is Spiritual Mentor/Godmother...I'd like to think of myself as Z.'s "Lorelai Gilmore."

J., thank you for including me in the beautiful ceremony and for entrusting me with your first son. As I told you during your pregnancy, before he was born I already loved him.

Baby Z., you will forever be a part of our family because of our bond. I will be there for you and love you. I am honored to be your Lorelai Gilmore. xoxo

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Whirlwind Life

I haven't had two minutes to sit down, much less two minutes to write. I'm feeling like I'm missing a limb, when I don't write. I have so much swirling in my head and I'm constantly "writing" posts in my head, but have not had the time to write anything down.

So much has gone on that I can't cover it all in one post.  Since my last post, Mr. Bananas has turned 7 months old. (It's been so long since I've written that he'll be 8 months this week!), I've been running around with the Asian Invasion applying for jobs and going to interviews, I've been blessed to be have been designated the Godmother for my BFF's first son, celebrated at a friend's wedding, and finally joined the rest of the world in getting a Smartphone (coming on FRIDAY!).  I know there is so much more and I'll have to go through pictures to remember what's been going on with my life.

I have so much to share and I will, soon. I promise. I have pictures to post and celebrations to share.  Life is very much a whirlwind. There are days where I am so tired that I've been falling asleep in my dinner, but at the same time, feeling that I'm finally accomplishing some things that have been on my to-do list.

Take care and hope to catch up soon!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Godfather & Godson

I love this picture of Mr. Bananas with his Godfather.  It was taken on Labor day when we celebrated family birthdays.

I love that my brother-in-law takes a special interest in his Godson and spends time with him whenever we get together. Our family is so large that I think it can be easy to get lost in the shuffle during family gatherings, but I don't think that will ever happen to Mr. Bananas. His Godfather always makes the time to scoop him up and spend time with him

I know that my BIL will continue to be there for Mr. B. throughout his life.  When Hubby and I choose the Godparents for our children, we want to know that they are willing and able to pray and be there for our children.  If this picture is any indication, then we know that J. was the perfect choice for Mr. B. He will be there to celebrate and rejoice with Mr. Bananas as he celebrates each spiritual milestone.  I'm also confident that he will be there to answer the inevitable questions that will come up as Mr. Bananas tries to figure out where he stands in his spirituality.  There will be times that our parental answers will not be enough, and our children will want to seek them out on their own. My hope and prayer is that the Godparents we chose for our children will be able to advise our children when they need or want someone other than Mom and Dad.

As a side note, another reason this picture is special?  A year before this picture was taken, I was told that I might be losing this baby. My brother in law and sister in law (Mr. B's Godparents) stopped what they were doing when I texted them and they took the time to pray for their future (though not known then) Godson. For that he is one very lucky baby.

Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A Visit from the Tooth Fairy

Boogie's first lost teeth!
Boogie's first week of kindergarten ended with a bang. Boogie loved kindergarten and I loved all that he was learning. He came home with so much enthusiasm.  At the end of the first week, Boogie came home with two missing teeth and a letter to the tooth fairy from his teacher.

Boogie's front two bottom teeth had been very loose. They were ready to fall out and we bided our time.  The first one fell out sometime on Friday while he was in school. He gave it to a friend on the playground so that he could swing.  She promptly lost it. He proceeded to pluck the second one out of his mouth.  He was very upset that he lost the first one and didn't have it for the tooth fairy. He told his teacher who then wrote a note to the tooth fairy verifying that Boogs lost his tooth and then lost it on the playground.  He asked the tooth fairy to give him double the rate even though he only one to put under his pillow.

I did a quick Facebook survey trying to gauge how much the tooth fairy gave for missing teeth. It appears that the going rate was around five dollar. FIVE dollars!  There was no way that the tooth fairy was going to give up $10 for a couple of missing teeth. She was generous enough to leave a $2 bill for the first tooth and two $1 coins for the second tooth.

Boogs wanted us to take a picture of the tooth fairy and asked that Daddy and I dress up in animal snuggy-type blankets to keep watch.  We did catch a quick pic of the elusive fairy ;)

The Tooth Fairy!

Mommy dressed "incognito" with a lion blanket hoping to catch a picture of the tooth fairy.


Monday, September 12, 2011

Kind. Smart. Important.

Two weeks ago a friend of mine and I went to see The Help.  If you haven't had a chance to see it yet, do so. It was a great movie.  The Help is the story of an aspiring author who decides to write a book from the African American Maid's point of view in the 1960's.  The characters were inspiring.  I appreciated their stories, their frustrations, their challenges, and their successes.

One of the things that struck me from the get go was what one of the maids (Aibileen) says to her little charge.  She started her morning routine with telling the little girl: "You are kind. You are smart. You are important."

Of all the messages shared by the movie, this is one that hit home.  (Again, it goes back to my love language of affirmation.)  But isn't Aibileen's message to Mae Mobley also a reflection of how "The Help" is viewed by their employers?  That They aren't smart or important? Isn't it interesting that Aibileen tells the little girl that she is kind first?  To be kind is the most important trait?

How often are we told something positive about us? How often do we share something positive about another person?  As a mother I want my children to know that I love and appreciate them. I want them to know that I'll always be there for them and that they are never a burden to me. Granted, there are days that I become frustrated and there are days that I wish I had a little "me" time. I think that's normal. There's never a day that I wish I was working.  But I know that if I was working outside the home, I would be wishing that I could be home with my kids every single day.

I decided to follow Aibileen's cue and tell my kids that they are "kind, smart, and important." I've also decided to add, "God loves you and so does Mommy and Daddy."  How's that for affirmation?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

So Wanted

A year ago I was celebrating Labor Day with my side of the family when my husband and I made an unexpected trip to Urgent Care.  I was 3 1/2 months pregnant.  After being seen, I was told that I may very well lose the baby that I was carrying.  I was given the signs to look for in case of a miscarriage, placed on immediate bed rest,  and told to call my OB in the morning.  I was terrified. So was my husband. As we waited to be seen I had texted my prayer warriors. I knew that these ladies would do nothing but pray, send loving thoughts, and check in on me. Exactly what I needed.  They sent back lots of loving words while we waited.

I remember coming home and talking with my husband about how I was praying for grace to give in to God's calling.  If I was meant to have this baby, He would make it happen. If not, I prayed for the grace to let this baby go.  It was a difficult choice. I had wanted this baby so much before conception.  Having Bug made me realize that I could handle more children and I desperately wanted another one to round out our lives.

So as each day passed in my pregnancy, my husband and I rejoiced in another day closer to full-term.  It came to be that we were blessed with Mr. Bananas. I was also blessed with the love and support of family and friends who stuck by me 100% of the way. A year after I thought I was going to lose my precious baby I was taking him with me to celebrate the birthdays of our beloved extended family.  Praise God!

James 1:17

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above...

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Almost Wordless Wednesday--Cousins!

One of the cool things about having our Filipino relatives move near us is that my kids can get to know and spend time with cousins on my side of the family. My cousin S celebrated her 18th birthday on Sunday. We celebrated by going out to lunch and then an ice cream cake back at our house.

Here is a sweet picture of Bug with her Filipino cousins. I love this picture.

Celebrating S's 18th birthday.  S., SL, and Bug

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


It's official. I am a mother of a kindergartener.  Boogie started his first day of kindergarten yesterday. Overall, I'd say the day went fairly well. He had been anxious the weeks leading up to it saying that he didn't want to go to all day school. He said he would miss us. He also figured out that Daddy has off every other Friday, but he would still have to go to school.

Hubby took the day off to walk Boogie to his first day of school.  It was nice to have an extra pair of hands as we learned a new routine. I woke up Boogs. I could tell he was excited and nervous.  I was giddy and so excited for him. I knew that he would love it.  During breakfast we all broke out into dancing as some good songs came on the radio. It was nice to do something fun and silly before gearing up to go to school.

I strapped the baby in a front carrier and Buggy, Hubby, and I took first day of school pictures and then walked Boogs to school. We got there in time for Boogs to line up briefly before being asked to go into the classroom.  And then we left. And just like that, I was the mother of a kindergartner.

Hubby and I decided to devote most of the day to our sweet Bug who seemed kind of lost without her favorite playmate. When we went to the gym, the childcare folks said that she was weepy and kind of forlorn.  We took her to lunch, played with her, and spoke with her, pouring a ton of love on her. She totally needed it and we were happy to oblige.

We picked up Boogs at the end of the day and we were shocked to find out how much energy he had. We were convinced that he would be exhausted and fall asleep in his dinner. But no joke he came home and bounced around for 4 hours!  Through dinner, through some errands, and before bedtime. Where did he get his energy.  We took him to his favorite restaurant for dinner where he ate like a horse.  I think Hubby and I are still trying to figure out what happened. But when he went to bed, he was asleep in minutes and didn't get up until morning. He was undoubtedly exhausted.

I am very pleased with whom he was placed for kindergarten. I think the teacher will understand him and appreciate his humor, intelligence, and energy...or so I hope.  It was a wonderful beginning to his academic career. I am so appreciative of the men and women who choose to become teachers and do it well. We give them our most precious and valuable possessions, our children. Thank you! A special thank you to my MVMS peeps (current and former). Even though Boogs isn't in your school, I value that time that I was able to work with you. You are what keeps me hopeful that there are incredible teachers who love what they do. Thank you!