Friday, October 31, 2008

A Slither

Gertie is killing me this morning. She's got a sliver, which she is obsessing about all the time. It hurts, but she doesn't want me to touch it. Every once in a while she approaches me and says, "Mommy, don't take my slither out yet." He He He.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Halloween's on the Way

Halloween is tomorrow. I think we will finally carve a pumpkin this afternoon. The weather is beautiful here, and I hope it stays that way. Gertie is a trick-or-treater in training. She's been eagerly anticipating knocking on doors and being handed a piece of candy after she says, "Trick or treat!" And she tells me many times about how she's going to look them in the eye and say, "Thank you."

Grace is going to be wearing the Alice in Wonderland costume that we paid nearly $20 for at Walmart so she could wear it in the school play in a couple weeks. At least her costume is covered. She is on the border of being too old for trick or treating. She informed me a couple weeks ago that if she did go trick or treating, she'd rather John and I didn't go, but that she just take Gertie and Ethan herself. That way she'd feel more comfortable knocking on doors and begging for candy.

Ethan has been telling me he's going as a French hobo. I am still wondering what difference there is between a French hobo, and just a hobo, but I guess we'll see. I'm not expecting much.

My Dad was here to see us last week and I have not even one picture from the visit. Very disappointing. We had a good time together all the way around. He helped me take care of some unpleasant errands and shook his head as he opened our van's hatchback. Let's just say we haven't vacuumed the van out in a while, and it needed it. He did that for us, he gassed us up. He bought fish for Ethan, which Ethan noticed right away when he came home from school. It was a good time.

The days are just whizzing by around here. Tonight John and I have our small group, which is new. I am looking very forward to that.

John finally ordered and received a new turntable to play his vinyl on. That is what I wanted to get him back on September 4th, his birthday, but I was hesitant to pick one out. I asked him to do it, and he was slow to make a decision. But now he's got one, it's hooked up and spinning often. We all like it.

And Gertie has just been a kick lately. She has got the funniest sense of humor. After all her grumpy days, I think she's finally coming into a little sweetness. I am really enjoying her.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Catching Up Again

Oh, it's been so long since my last post. It seems like just a few days ago. Things have been going well for us around here. I just really do like this life.

The Phillies are in the world series this year. That is John's favorite team. He's been loyal to them since he was just a little guy. I remember when we were early married they made it to the world series and won. But that was a long time ago. We are rooting for them big time in this house.

Ethan has just finished doing his homework tonight and it is shortly after 9 p.m. He had church tonight, and we decided to let him go even though that homework wasn't done. I'm really not sure what to do with days like this. He was feeling pretty overwhelmed and on the verge of a meltdown. I knew he'd be up late, but I also thought he needed a break. I really think he has a hard time staying focused on schoolwork sometimes after a long day. He had spelling, math (tons of it) and social studies and reading. That's a big load. We settled on doing the social studies during the lunch hour tomorrow and tackling the rest tonight. I was just finishing getting Gertie into bed, way too late, by the way, but she had church too. Anyway, Ethan wanders up with a big smile and a ho-ho in one hand and a fist-full of peanuts in the other. Oh, my word. He was so glad to be finished. Conquerer. I just love that boy. But he's got to get organized....

I don't know if I hit the nail on the head with the low blood sugar, but I've been trying to make sure Gertie has a bit in her belly before each nap and so far, so good. We've had a good week, and I'm enjoying that girl. The other day I was snuggling Ethan (yes, he still likes to snuggle) and Gertie was jealous. I was telling her it was his turn. She could join us, but I wasn't ousting him. She really wanted me to herself. She fussed, and then cried, and then gave up on that. After a bit she said to Ethan, "I know, Brother, you can go over on the couch and I'll have this side of Mom." She was proposing it like it was a great deal for him. He didn't fall for that. She fussed a bit more. Finally went to sit with Dad (who is great, but obviously not as great as me) and after a bit, she said to Ethan again, "Brother, you can drive my car if you want." I just loved how she was trying so hard to coax him away. Very manipulative. He let her have me at that point. Loving brother.

My Dad is coming in the morning. I am excited to see him. I think the weather is going to be poor, but I guess we'll just have to cozy up. I'm just looking forward to having him around for a day.

And my automatic van door has been very testy for a very long time. It only sometimes works, usually when it's warm. And if it's cold out, there isn't much hope. Well, it's gotten to the point where if you have to manually open it, it is so hard. The kids can barely do it. It's really bad. I took it to our car place, and they said, it's fine. By this point the day had warmed up and it worked fine for them. Then one cold morning I was so irritated that I drove over to the car place unannounced and said, "Come out here and try to open this door. It's impossible." Well, I wouldn't recommend that tactic. Two guys come over, open the door, stare at my like I'm a psycho (which I kind of am at this point) and say, "Well, it's tough, but they usually are when you open an electric door manually like that." Very maddening. So at least another month goes by and I get so mad the other day again (not to mention that John and Gertie and I had had a lunch date before John had to go back to his office. He left us at the restaurant and Gertie was wanting a sugary donut from the buffet. I was telling her that she needed to finish her chicken first. She screamed at me! Very loudly. I just picked her up and walked out. She was screaming and kicking and fighting. Ugly. Please have sympathy for the next mom you see this happening to. It just isn't right. ) Well, I digress. I fought Gertie into the car seat knowing my next errand, Target, wasn't going to work with her in that state, so I decided to take the van to the Chrysler dealer and let them look at the door even with a screaming toddler. I was preparing to say, "Just don't mind the screaming toddler in the back seat." She actually calmed down by the time we got there. They said they knew just what to do and I could bring it in tomorrow morning. Woo hoo! I'm so excited to have this fixed. And then the icing on the cake is that they called today to tell me that we are still under a service contract (that we had no idea about) for about 400 more miles and this is a covered repair, as well as a bearing that they is--suddenly I don't know what would be wrong with a bearing, but whatever it is, they're going to fix it, and that's covered too. So now I'm racking my brain trying to think of anything else that's wrong with my van that might be covered as well. He said he'll look it over real good and fix whatever he sees. How could we have not known this? I guess I need to just be happy to have found out now.

I'm having a home date with my husband tonight. I love that guy. But he doesn't love that the date is beginning with a long and boring and unneccessary blog entry. Not really dating material. Although the Phillies and the Rays isn't really dating material either, right?

Hope your days are fine.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

PPP, PPP, PPP (It's not the ABCs)

We've been busy around here. Last weekend I offered to go get John's mom for a visit. John had been planning on making the drive, but he was having a hard time getting up the gumption to get going. I thought a bit of peace (even though it's staring down a long straight stretch of interstate) and a good book on tape sounded pretty good to me. I drove to SD on Saturday and back on Sunday. I worked on Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning. Football was canceled due to an extremely wet Tuesday around here. Gertie and I had Bible study yesterday morning and then Marge and I headed out to Target while Gertie napped in the afternoon. We had a long good time shopping without distractions and came home to a slightly grumpy husband who thought we were a little out of control.

Gertie has been up and down on waking up from her naps in fits. The other day I received an e-mail from a friend seeking help about a kindergartener waking in the night upset and afraid. Unfortunately I had no sage advice for her, but it did spark the idea that there are other people out in the world who may have my problems. I just googled something like "toddler wakes up screaming from nap" and found a few sites of parents having the exact same problem with their little ones. It sounded almost exactly the same, just irrational, inconsoleable crying that lasts about thirty minutes. Do you know what advice they were being given? That it might be low blood sugar. Wow. That was a new idea to me. It makes them behave that way. They suggested making sure that you feed them some good protien before they nap. I think there might be something to this for my Gertie. We try to nap her around one, but depending on what's been going on, sometimes it itsn't until three or so. At one o'clock she's just eaten lunch, but at three, it's been a while. I don't recall any pattern, but now I'll be looking for it. Yesterday she was down early after a good lunch and she woke up in a great mood. We've had a good couple of days. She is certainly headstrong, and likes to do her own thing, but I can usually coax her back to obedience by reminding her that if she doesn't obey me she'll be disciplined. And then I remind her that "she loves me and she doesn't want to disobey me."

I just got off the phone with Beth and she solved my video problems. I had tried to upload this video so many times. Then I tried youtube. I thought it never worked, but she told me to go back and look. There it was. I am so excited. I'm really not sure any of you will be. (I guess I'm hoping the grandparents will like it, but it's probably even a bit long for them.) So watch what you like, and I promise not to quiz you on it later.

It is homecoming week for the university in our old hometown. We like to go to that if we can, and I guess we can. So we are headed out again this weekend. We always have a great time and see some familiar faces. We had a homecoming parade here for the high school and lots of kids threw candy. Gertie keeps talking about the kids that threw candy at her. She wants to eat it. I guess when I write that, it doesn't sound so odd. When she says it, it makes it sound like they assailed her (but she liked it). It's raining candy. Can't beat that.

Ethan has football tonight, and I'm really hoping John's mom will join us for the "fun." It's hard to get her out. She just doesn't enjoy it much, but we like having her around.