Monday, September 25, 2006

Lion's Den @ 4 - 6 o'clock PM

Sometimes I feel like my husband has to walk into a lion's den at the end of the day when he comes home from work. Either we've been so busy that day and the house is messy, or dinner isn't made or the kids have been falling apart . . . and I'm upset about all of it and things aren't peaceful at all. I feel so bad calling him or telling him this when he calls just before he leaves work because I want our house to be a place of peace and rest after a long day at the office. Of course, right now he's in school and has a four day work week and of those 4 days, 3 of them are half days of class although he stays all day to do reading "homework" and writing for the next days of class because he can do it in the calm and quiet there much easier than he can at home. Plus, when he comes home, he can spend time with us and not have to try to fit more work in, although it seems like there's always something else he is doing for work. That's not a complaint, just a fact. Just like, my "work" day never really ends and I don't really have an "end" to my "work week" because there are always things to clean, laundry to do, meals to be made and kids to nurture and care for, oh yeah and diapers to change. : )

Anyway, back to the subject, my goal is that even if the day has been crazy, that when Will walks in the door, things are at least calm, the house is picked up and dinner is close to being done. No, I'm not running to put on a dress and make-up like the list in Good Housekeeping from the 50's, although if I'm still in pajama pants and a sleep shirt by 5 PM I do try to get dressed by the time he walks in, but that usually isn't the case. I just hope it helps his "decompression" time after work so he's not bombarded at home. He's so patient though so I'm not sure if doing all of this really means that much because he deals with the days that are crazy so well, but mostly I think he just likes the heads up if he will be walking into the lion's den when he comes home, just so he knows what to expect. With a toddler and a baby, both boys :) I feel like I'm doing good to just have dinner made. I feel like I'm a pretty organized person too, so I wonder how other people do it without pulling too much hair out. It's so hard to make dinner and have both boys whining or crying or wanting attention because it's the end of the day. I just want to stop and spend time with them, but then I think they should deal with it (well, not the baby), but Charley for sure. Then again, they're more important than a complete meal on time, but Will is more important than them and the meal is for him . . . it goes on and on :)

I've heard other moms complain about those 4 and 5 o'clock hours and how difficult they can be. It's like the kids pick those times to meltdown, and then at 6 they're fine again. How does this work? Are they just waiting for dad to get home? Are they hungry? Are they worn out and just need the physical release of throwing a fit? :) or Do they just want my attention every minute. I wouldn't guess attention because Charley plays by himself so well . . . usually . . . lately he's been a bit clingy and whiny. This just started and I don't know if it's jealousy of time with Ben or what. I spend plenty of time with just him by ourselves during Ben's naptime. I think it's just the age. We'll see. Until then, things will be a little hectic for what hopefully will be only a little while. Although, even when I say they're hectic, I don't think they're as crazy as they could be. I think the fact that I'm tired from nursing Ben through the night just wears me out and makes me feel like things are more out of control than they really are. It makes me emotional. Lately, I feel like I'm wanting to cry about something nearly every day and no, I'm not pregnant. I probably just need to get more sleep. That seems to be a recurring theme of these blogs. :) Well, this has been a full one, so I'll sign off now. Night night or as Will says it with Charley for nighttime prayers, "Please give Charley beautiful dreams, Amen."

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Day to day

bonk, bonk, bonk, bonk, bonk, over and over and over again is the sound I've heard for nearly a week now as our back porch/deck is being rebuilt. It's really great that we're getting a new one (thanks for our landlord), but the banging, combined with the kids, is grinding on my sanity. Especially when the kids are trying to nap or I'm trying to nap or watch TV just to take a break, because I can't hear the TV or nap, or concentrate enough to read!! Good news though, I think they'll be done today. The workers have been very nice though. They always say hi back to Charley and Andrew, who have been enjoying having Bob the Builder in the backyard all week :)

PKD walk 2006

Charley running across the walk "finish line". I'm chasing him as usual.

I just wanted to get the word out for PKD. It stands for Polycystic Kidney Disease and Andrew, the boy I babysit, and his mother, Becca, both have it. It's a disease where cysts grow on their kidneys. There is no cure for it yet. We had a walk for PKD in Providence last weekend and they raised 20,000 to donate for researching a cure! I'm writing about it because few people have ever heard of it, yet it's more common than cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, hemophilia, Down syndrome and sickle cell anemia — combined. I just wanted to help get the word out. The website is and you can find local walks on the website if you want to support finding a cure.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Stereo types: Rhode Islanders - sayings

This is the first in a series of posts that I will categorize as stereo types. We've lived and moved in so many places and will be in so many more, and I just wanted to try to capture the people of the places that we've lived. I know, of course, that everyone from one area can't possibly fit into one stereotype, but there are some generalities that most DO fit into and there are some fun sayings from each area that I want to remember and share. A couple that I've heard a lot of people around here say is if you ask them if they want something and they're fine, they say, "I'm all set." This is the exact phrase over and over again, and people around here will tell you that it's a local saying. Another one that I think is funny is if a kid is acting out they say, "He's being fresh." I think I had only heard that phrase in movies until we moved here. I think it's cute and funny and a quirky little saying for this quirky little place. :) Another one I just heard this week was "snow bird". That's what they call people who live in Rhode Island, but fly down to Florida or some place warm for the winter. :) I thought that was a really funny one! :)

Friday, September 15, 2006

might as well blog . . .

I had to get up from my attempt at a nap alongside the boys because I had to sign one more page to get our house on the market by this weekend. So since they'll be up soon and it takes me forever to calm down and fall asleep anyway, I might as well stay up and blog. :)

It's raining here which means the people putting in a new deck/porch on our rental home are not working. :( It's only really a pain when I have to let Gayla out, because the back door lets out on the second story and there are stairs on the deck leading down to the backyard, but if the deck isn't there, no stairs. In fact, they nailed a board over the door because there's a big drop off there right now! Fun, Fun, especially since Charley just figured out every step to unlocking and opening our door. He mastered the hard-to-turn knob, the safte latch on the screen door, the tiny doorknob and almost the deadbolt!! How are we ever going to keep this kid inside?! :) He knows how the deadbolt works, he just can't quite turn the keys so we're going to have to start locking the door and hiding the keys because he's also pretty quick about grabbing a chair to reach anything he wants on the kitchen counters. He hasn't tried climbing onto the counters yet, but I'm sure that's next. It all started when he wanted to watch, then help us cook. I guess that's just next in the path of a growing toddler, endless exploration, with a dash of danger! :) Of course, he wouldn't be a boy without the danger part :) I keep thinking that it will me a miracle if he makes it to age 5. Oh the countless moms who have said something like that, yet, somehow, most make it and are just fine. If he get's too ambitious, we will start with discipline, but might just put the baby gates back up, although he knocked one of those down the other day too. :)

One thing he's doing a great job at is playing with his little brother. Charley loves being a big brother and is very good at it. He brings Ben baby toys from the correct bin and offers them to him lovingly and gently. It's very cute to watch. Then, Ben inches towards them and grabs them to suck on and play with. For me, the cutest part of the whole scenario is the tone of Charley's voice when he's talking to Ben. It completely changes . . . it's sweeter and gentler, and oh so cute!! He is usually a very kind big brother, but this morning he decided it would be fun to sit on Ben. Ahhh! :) No, Ben was fine, but it just means I have to keep a closer eye on them while they're playing and keep disciplining Charley for being too rough. It's a constant battle especially with Andrew (the 20 mo. old that I babysit a couple of days a week). We're working on it, but I think it's the age. More about that later, I've been meaning to post a discipline blog for awhile, but haven't gotten to it yet. Coming soon though : )

Well, I think the kids are finally awake, so gotta run :)

Happy Birthday Will!

Today is my hubbie's 28th b-day!! :) For it, he's going hiking and camping in the Presidential Range of northern New Hampshire. He got a new tent and sleeping bag on saved up gift cards from years passed (from my mom and his parents, Thank you!) from REI. He's worn a goofy, but very cute, smile around the house all week as he constantly repeated, "I'm going camping, I'm going hiking." He's been so excited and only a few hours ago, he left to go. I know he'll have a great time and I'm so glad this is something fun he can enjoy and DO instead of something more routine. It's always nice to do a little something different for your birthday. Well, I did make an apple pie for him last night, instead of cake, and I made a big birthday breakfast for him this morning, but we didn't have an official party or birthday dinner or get together with friends, although Becca was over picking up Andrew for the pie and breakfast so she shared those with us, and that made it more special. I don't know why having someone else there makes it more special, it just felt more like an even or more official for some reason. It's probably because I'm such an extrovert. Anyway, we had fun and that's the point.

We thought about going as a family, but he really wanted to hike this area and it wouldn't be easy for kids which means I'd have to find some way to entertain them while Will was hiking and since they're so young and keeping them alive in my OWN house is a daily concern, it would be near nuts to try and do it at a campsite. Don't get me wrong, it's doable, just difficult for now with a 2 year old who I know would run all over the place and a 4 mo. old that I can't run with in a snugli for fear of hurting his little neck and I couldn't push a stroller through the forest to keep up with my 2 year old . . . pause to breath . . . it would be quite challenging. I know we'll try it later when they can both run all over the place :) Do campsites have playgrounds? These aren't typical campsites either, like the nice state parks we have back in TX. They're hiking campsites, very simple, just to sleep and keep hiking. It would have been fun to try, but we'll wait. Anyway, I know Will is going to have a blast and I can't wait until Sunday when he comes home to tell me all about it. I'll post some pictures!

Monday, September 11, 2006

sell, sell, sell

Just a quick blog to let you all know we decided to sell our house in Norfolk. Actually it will be on the market to sell or rent, because we need to do something soon! Anyway, please pray that it sells or rents quickly. Our tennents (sp?) are out Oct. 1.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

and behind door #2 is . . .

ok drum roll please . . . trrrrrrrr :) I've been waiting to post the big reveal on our next move location for a month or so, but I should preface this by saying, "WE DON'T HAVE ORDERS YET," so anything can happen. BUT, we found out that Will has been selected for an internship in the CNO's office at the Pentagon working on special projects for a year beginning next June after he graduates from the War College. We'll be in D.C.! Tada!! I'm really excited about this for a few reasons: first, I think D.C. is a really cool town and it will be so much fun to explore all the museums and fun places for kids with Charley and Ben. Second, we have good friends who have also been assigned to the pentagon and we'll be living on the same side of D.C., hopefully in the same area, and so we'll get to hang out again! Another neat thing about living there is that Will's Aunt Donnette lives there so we'll get to see her more! I look forward to exploring the area's many different types of retaurants (we tried a great Lebanese one there once) and shops and events that surround such an amazing city. One of the best things about this area though is that it's so close to some great forests, parks, and hiking. We'll also get to visit Annapolis more and our friends there, as well as Norfolk, and the interesting Civil War areas just south of D.C.

Anyway, that's the big news and we feel blessed and excited. Even though Will's hours might be long and crazy, it's still nice that he won't deploy or be assigned to a ship for another year which just means another year to be there and enjoy the boys' childhood, which is even more special when you're in the military and you never know what's coming next on a ship. Again, we don't have orders yet, and those of you in the military know that that means anything could happen still, but it's very probable so we thought it was ok to let everyone know. After the D.C. tour, Will still needs to come back to RI for department head school, but I don't know if we'll all move up here for the few weeks or months that he's there, or if he'll just be a geo-bachelor for the short time and then we'll all move to our next duty station together.

As always, thanks for all your thoughts and prayers as we find a place to live there and make the transition. We'll keep you updated on our progress in this direction as we get closer to the move.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

precious moments

I had the most precious time with Charley yesterday. Background first . . . when he was smaller I used to dance around with him while we listened to music together. So yesterday, I had a classical mix from a Paddington Bear CD (gift from Aunt Donnette, Thank you!) and I started to play it so he could calm down before his nap. On a whim, I asked if he would dance with me so I picked him up and we got to dance together again like when he was little. It was so sweet! Afterwards, he snuggled with me on the couch while we listened some more and he liked the music so much that he let me lay him in our bed and kept listening while I was able to go get some dishes done. When he finally got up and I asked him how he liked it he said, "it's pretty." Oh so sweet! :) Dancing with him was a sweet time and when Will got home, he reminded me that I would get to dance with him again at his wedding. That was a crazy thought, but dear. Anway, just thought I'd relay a very precious moment. It's so wonderful to enjoying our kids.

Friday, September 08, 2006

so much to blog, so little time

Well, I figure since I don't have much time right now, I'd better just write in bits :) Here goes, first bit, we need prayer right now to know whether or not we should sell our house in Norfolk. Our renters are out at the beginning of October and we need new ones or we need to sell. We're not going back to Norfolk as soon as we thought we would and have been thinking about selling since the market there is still doing well, unlike other areas of the country. Anyway, we'll see, but we have to make a decision fast and both options sound good to me, ahh. We're praying about it alot and would love for you all to keep us in your prayers too. Thanks so much. Next bit, later :)

Thursday, September 07, 2006

creeping . . . crawling

Something exciting . . . Ben is in the beginning stages of crawling!!! He's been able to creep, like babies do, with their feet kicking behind them, but in the last couple of days, he's actually been up on his knees. It's been so exciting and fun to watch. He's still trying to figure out how to coordinate his arms while his knees want to move and sometimes he does the awkward "lurch" forward into a mini-face plant :) It's cute though and he keeps trying! Charley is actually trying to help him by pushing on his diaper, but I have to remind him that Ben has to do this on his own. I think he'll be crawling on his own before too long though. It's going to be amazing once again to watch the miracle of mobility! Go Ben!