Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunday Senses

Sight: Sunshine for the first time in days, no children in sight.
Hear: Silence. No kidding, complete silence. Never happens around here. (Husband took all children to the park. Need I say more? He is awesome..I love him.)
Feel: Stress, tension. Today is the final day we have to make a decision on the insurance thing as tomorrow the papers are due back. I thank those of you (all two of you!) who gave me some input, I only wish private insurance were an option but I am "uninsurable". Yeah, I'm a hot mess I guess.
Smell: Nothing, really. I do need to clean the litter box though. Gross.
Taste: The wonderful box of chocolates that my mother-in-law sent me for my birthday tomorrow.

Go see Rebecca and she'll tell you what she's experiencing today.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Say What?

It has been a pretty hard week around here. Maddie and I are sick, and Taylor seems to have woken up this morning coughing now too. Since we are sick, we have stayed home all week and passed on several playdates that we normally would have used to get out of the house and have some fun. Needless to say, we are feeling stir-crazy.

And then, on Wednesday, we get the news.

Effective February 1st, our medical insurance will increase by 75%. From $134 per week for crappy coverage, to $236 per week for the same crappy coverage. If we want to go up to the better plan that utilizes a copay rather than an embedded deductible (which we were planning to do), we will have to pay $264 per week. Without giving you specifics on finances, I can tell you that that is not a drop in the bucket. It would really, really hurt.

We are in an uproar. Should I go back to work just to pay for daycare and insurance? Should we risk being uninsured? Can someone who has had to make this decision before give me some advice?

This is the sick house, signing off.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I know that I like to brag about how I feed my children. Even raw tomato and green pepper strips disappear at an alarming rate into Maddie's mouth. I never show you the other side, though. While we do eat tons of fresh fruit and vegetables, we also eat lots of junk like ice cream, cookies and chips. Here is proof that my kids don't always eat healthy.

That is powdered sugar on their faces, from those bags of highly-processed, white-flour-and-lard-filled donuts.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Proof Positive

I mentioned in an earlier post that Taylor has, for the most part, stopped the set of behaviors that put the "terrible" in the two's and the "terrifying" in the three's. The preschooler generally wants to please his/her parent, and is much more aware of others and their feelings. (I learned this in a child development class in college, so I didn't make it up but I can't tell you exactly where it comes from either. I have found it to be true, however, having a third child passing through that age group. )
Last night Taylor offered more proof. All six of us had just sat down at the dinner table, hands folded, just about to start the prayer. Taylor says, "Wait a minute everybody, I have something to say. I love you all."

There's something to make you smile on this Monday morning.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Children of the Millenium

Like it or lump it, we live in an age of technology.

Easily accessible and relatively cheap, it has taken the place of things like jacks and hopscotch in our childrens' lives.

When not at gymnastics or soccer, Brittany and Cameron can be found on their computers, Nintendos and iPhones (Brittany received an iPhone 4 for her birthday from her father and Cameron is using my older model that I gave to him when I switched back to my preferred Blackberry). They both work hard, at school and their respective sports, so I figure it's ok.

Taylor and Maddie have inherited their love of technology. That's just great, 'cause I can promise they will not each have their own iPhone and laptop like my older two!

Friday, January 14, 2011

You know you have been watching too much "16 and Pregnant" when your two year old and four year old daughters come to you with cats stuffed into their shirts shouting "I have a baby in my tummy!".

(disclaimer: I watch this show on my computer while I'm cooking dinner. Because that's much less damning than watching it on the big television in the living room, right?)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

January Equals

January= My birthday (yay)

January= Post-Christmas slump (boo)

January= Waiting for info to start taxes (yay)

January= Return of the insurance deductible (@#&%^@)

January= Oh wait, did I say yay for birthday? I'm another year older (boo)

January= Adorable girls in warm fuzzy jammies (yay)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Maddieism of the Day

"No hose way!"

translation: No way jose.
Yes, I'm ashamed to admit that I've said this to my children. I'm a paragon of proper grammer and class.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

And the Lightbulb Goes On

I have figured out why the experts say that the optimim time interval between children is (at least) two years. With an age gap of 2-3 years, one child will be out of the terrible two's and the terrifying three's before the next one enters the phase. Taylor was an extremely trying three year old. Madison has suddenly, within the past two weeks, turned into a holy terror. My sweet, calm, compliant, laid back, momma-lovin' baby has turned into little red haired hooligan from "Problem Child". Remember that movie? John Ritter was the father and the child was pure evil. That may be a slight exaggeration, she's not quite evil yet, but she has changed. Everything she does is completely normal for a two year old, but I'm surprised I have any hair left after this week.
A few examples of her OMG-how-am-I-gonna-get-through-this-day-without-losing-my-mind behavior:
-Throwing food. And cups. And plates. And bowls. Every bit of food I give her.
-Turning the light off in the bathroom every time I take a shower. I have to scream for Taylor to come in and turn it back on.
-Dumping the remaining water in her cup on my kitchen rugs after she has a drink.
-Chewing up food and spitting it out. On the floor.

I know that every other mother reading this is saying so what? My kid does that all the time. I realize she is not unique in her two-ness (not a word, I know). It is really just the pure defiance that rankles me. And the showering in the dark part. I have always coddled her, and let her pretty much get away with anything and everything. Now I am reaping the results of that. I did the Super Nanny thing on Thursday night, where I kept returning her to the time out chair every time she got up and starting the clock over, and I think a 2 minute time-out took 30 minutes to accomplish. (She also kept standing up and turning the a/c or heater on. I guess I should move the time-out chair to a spot not directly under the thermostat.)

Taylor, thank-you-Jesus, has come out of this type of behavior. She is mostly sweet and wanting to please me. Occasional tantrums, occasional loss of hearing (meaning she just ignores me when I tell her to do or not to do something), but not destructive and pushing her boundaries like Maddie. I am so glad that I don't have a two year old and a three year old.

Good thing she's cute. Seriously cute.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Story

This is the "tree" that Taylor and Maddie planted this afternoon.

And this is Taylor and Maddie "watching the tree grow", which Taylor says she is going to do "all night long".

I can't seem to convince her that her tree made of sticks and dead branches will not grow.

Please excuse the appearance of the back yard. That big dirt spot is where Dezi dug up the grass last summer, trying to get to the cool soil underneath during 100+ degree weather. The white stuff to the right of the porch is the filling Finn pulled out of the old comforter that was in his dog house. The paint has also been chewed off of the house in several spots, especially near the bottom of the post. Why in the world does anybody have dogs??

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The New Year

The year 2010 was pretty good, I have decided after long and earnest introspection. Ha. To be truthful, I have only briefly thought of last year, and only after seeing other bloggers write out reviews and recaps of 2010. All in all, it was a good year. We have made progress in several areas of our life, making headway in reducing the drama, being better parents and increasing our financial stability. Baby steps in all areas, but strides forward none the less. We ended the year in a better place than we started it, and you can't ask for more than that.

What's in store for us in the year 2011:
~Brittany will get braces, with the spacers going in today. Yay! So much for that financial stability I was just talking about.
~Taylor starts kindergarten.
~Possibly we will move to a bit nicer neighborhood. I have great hopes.
~We are planning a visit to the great-grandparents on both sides in MO, but I am hoping to squeeze in our first short "adult only" trip somewhere. Anywhere. wink wink.
Happy New Year!!