Tuesday, December 31, 2013

All holiday posts have been delayed due to an uninvited visitor...

The flu!!!

Our family has been down with the Influenza flu since Friday. Camryn and I dropped first Friday afternoon and Cade followed on Monday. Thankfully our doctor called in Tamiflu for Jay when he called in Cade's so hopefully that will keep him from getting it - or at least not getting it as bad. It has been fun, fun, fun around here!! The last time I remember getting the flu like this I was Cade's age. That was 25 years ago. If I wait another 25 years to get it again that will be fine with me. 

The Tamiflu has worked wonders. I was going to try to forgo it and work through it myself. But when I saw how quickly it turned Camryn around I was sold. Even though I had almost waited to long I felt remarkably better by Monday. Almost too good because then I got a little cocky...

Jay left the den of sickness with Camryn to go get a hog house. That is its own story for another post. Cade was finally resting so I thought since I hadn't been outside since Friday I would walk to our mailbox. It was dusk so I thought the Jammie's, wild hair and no makeup wouldn't been seen by anyone. I was going straight to the box and right back in the house. That was until I was greeted by our bull standing in our front yard. Great...and our neighbors weren't home. 

Since I had on Jay's house shoes I had to run back in and change. In that time Charlie found the bull and managed to chase it across the yard. By the time I got there I was afraid Charlie was going to run him through our fence. I picked up a stick and would've beat the dog...if he wasn't so good about staying in that radius of just being outside my reach.

 Did I mention it was almost dark? And the lighting out in our shop has quit working?  That again is something for another post titled "farming on a tiny budget and even less time."  Jay can't find where the short is at. Anyway I stumbled out to where we keep the feed to get some in a bucket. Except there was no feed. The bull followed me and I could tell he wanted in but couldn't figure out how to get back. Then Charlie showed up again and the bull doged into our woods. I then had to pick around the electric fence and everything else just waiting to make me fall and break my neck to get to the bull. Then he took off again and was almost to our other neighbors house. 

It was at that moment I heard the sweetest sound in the world...our neighbors diesel truck. People who knew what to do! I picked my way back through the woods and knocked on their door. Later in the evening it dawned on me how bad and weird I looked. No wonder Heather kept a far distance from me...zebra pajama pants, sweatshirt, no makeup, nothing done to my hair. And the crazy part...I was carrying an empty bucket and a stick. I'm sure John and Heather wondered how I planned on using my arsenal on the bull. They said they'd meet me over there and I told them I was going to run in and get a coat. Yup- sick with the flu and I was chasing a bull with no coat. I turned around and walked a few steps and realized the back of my pajama pants had slipped down. I'm pretty sure John and Heather may have saw a large portion of my underwear. 

While I was in grabbing the coat I called Jay to find out if this bull was halter broke. John had asked and I couldn't remember. Of course later in the night when I was replaying the whole situation I remembered that I did know the bull was halter broke. I just couldn't recall that fact at a time when I wouldn't like so much like a bumbling fool. But none of that mattered because all of the halters were in the truck...which was somewhere between here and Lamar hauling another show piece to add to our property. But I did learn why the bull got out from Jay. And again this goes under another post of being on a low budget/no time to fix things properly/make do post- but Jay had unplugged the electric fence...so he could plug in the tank heater. The choice was water for the the bull and Bailey or keeping them in the fence. Which that all goes back to our electrical issues. 

With two more people blocking the holes the bull went in the fence very easy. It took the three of us longer to figure out how to plug in the fence. Of course my ignorance was on display when John was asking questions that I had no idea the answers to. Like where we needed to plug the fence in. We all moved around in the dark and finally got it figured out. 

I am so thankful for good neighbors. John and Heather have their house up for sale. They would like to move back to Texas. Of course we want their house to sell so they can - but boy will we miss them. They are wonderful neighbors who are always so willing to help us out. Especially me since I usually don't know what I am doing. So if you are looking for a house and want some good (although slightly crazy) neighbors have we got the place for you!  Actually it really is a nice place to live. As long as you ignore that pesky Covenant, Rules and Restrictions that comes with it. Which we all do- except I've already got my arguments laid out in case someone new moves in. We can keep animals as long as they are pets. What is more of a pet than a show cow...or a pig...or her soon to be born piglets...I'm struggling a bit with the chickens though. Chickens are just nasty and mean. Who would want to have them as pets?

But back to the original story. John and Heather left and I headed back to the house. I was beginning to realize I wasn't nearly as ready to be out as I had thought. The cold air had set my lungs on fire and I was exhausted. I headed in. When Jay got home a little later the first question he asked me was "where is the mail?" 

Friday, December 20, 2013

Happy Anniversary to Us

Wednesday was our 14th Anniversary. In some ways it seems like we've been married for longer, in other ways it seems shorter. But the way we celebrated out 14th year we be one of the most memorable ones.

FCS sold their old building in Springfield earlier in the week. We still have some furniture there that was put up for sale to the employees. Jay brought the kids with him Wednesday to meet me at work. We headed over to the old office to look at some things for the school.

 I was trying to walk ahead of Jay to turn on lights. Cade was bringing up the rear and was supposed to be watching Camryn. I already had an anxiety moment when I remembered the vaults in that office and warned Cade about not letting her go in there. I guess I already had a sort if premonition. I could see the door getting shut somehow.

We made it all through the upstairs and then headed for the basement.  We made it through most of the rooms before the incident happened.  I had all the lights on so I went back upstairs to look for something another employee was supposed to have left for me.  Jay was making decisions and Cade was terrorizing Camryn in that brotherly love sort of way.  From the upstairs I heard Cade scream his full out panic mode scream.  I though he said something about wasp, but I didn't hear any crying so I didn't think it would be too bad.  A few seconds went by and I heard Cade scream again.  I figured I'd better go check it out.  As I got to the bottom of the stairs Cade went running by me in full out hyperventilating freak out mess mode.  He had been playing with Camryn and he had tried to scare her by putting her in a dark room and shutting the door so he could open it and say "roar".  Except the door locked.  Camryn was stuck in a pitch black room with the door shut.  By the time I got there Jay had a credit card out and was trying to maneuver the door open.  He tried a couple of times and it didn't work.  The door was heavy and solid and the hinges were on the inside.  I didn't know what we were going to do. 

Even Jay was a little concerned.  I heard him say "we are going to get you baby."  He tried a couple of times and then said we were going to have to call someone.  Cade was an absolute mess.  He acted like we were just going to leave her in there and go out to eat or something.  Cade and I ran back upstairs to look through some keys to see if we could find one that might work for that office.  Finally we heard Jay tell us he got it.  Whew.  I was afraid I was going to be paying FCS for a door that the fire department had to break down.  Later on Jay said he didn't know who he needed to call first.  The fire department for Camryn or the ambulance for Cade.  There was no more door shutting the rest of the night!  But I've laughed over how you could tell Camryn doesn't have my gnentics.  Cade was a wreck but Camryn didn't even shed a tear. 

After that debacle we went to eat at Hu Hot.  It was not busy when we got there.  Cade and I got our food first and all of a sudden people came out of the woodwork.  I think it took us 20 minutes to go through the line.  By the time we got back to the table Jay's salad was gone, along with the plate and Camryn thought I had left her.  Jay went to get his food and he was gone for even longer than I was.  When he got back I had dealt with a complete meltdown over Camryn's chicken and noodles being mixed together and had ate both my food and my salad.  As soon as Jay sat down Camryn disappeared under the table.  I stuck my head under it to see what she was doing.  She told me she was pooping in there.  Jay got to eat while Camryn hid under the table and pooped.  As soon as she was done there was no waiting - I had to change her.  We left the boys at the table and went to Macys to change and get a last minute gift.  So much for eating a meal together on our anniversary.  

After the mall we went to look at a Christmas display in downtown Springfield.  We stopped at a gas station first because Cade needed a drink.  There was a man standing outside that completely freaked Cade out.  The man spoke to Cade as he was getting back in the van and Cade froze and did nothing but stare at him.  I think it is safe to say visiting the square is out of our comfort zone.  I'm sure the person who spoke to Cade could see that written all over our T&C mini van and did it on purpose.  I'm sure he's still laughing about the freaked out kid.  By the time we found this light display which according to our local news station is supposed to rival "a New York city window" we were all on edge.  Then the window was not what I had hoped it would be.  It was rather disappointing.  We made a second go around the square so we could look at it one more time and I slowed down.  An SUV came whirling around the corner and honked at me for going slow.  The light ahead of me was red so they weren't going anywhere anyway.  I threw my hands up in the air and pointed to the red light.  Jay said he felt like he was going to need his gun.  I really wanted to throw my mini van in park and tell the woman to Bring. It. On.  Of course I didn't but I really wanted to. 

We topped our evening off by the all exciting trip to Wal-Mart.  While we were there Camryn turned into Buddy the Elf and decided to best way to spread Christmas cheer was to sing loudly for all to hear.  She sang Jingle Bells through the entire store.  We did get a lot of smiles so I guess it worked.  Of course all the attention wasn't completely wanted by me but it was super cute. 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Holiday Traditions and Such

I decided this year I wanted to be better about establishing some set holiday traditions. I'm usually hit or miss each year. Things get busy and then it is Christmas and we haven't done anything that I had hoped to do. I wanted to be better about making a list and trying to fit a few family fun things in each day. Jay told me I live in a Hallmark Channel bubble.

I don't know if other people who blog aren't always truthful or maybe they don't have the wild monkeys I have because it has been a circus. It also doesn't help that Cade is too old to care and Camryn is too young to care. That pretty much leaves me. Jay is supportive but he also wouldn't do the nights activity if I wasn't around. 

I've really wanted to make sure we were focusing on God each night along with a quick fun activity. Especially since Camryn can sing every word of Jingle Bells at ear splitting pitches but doesn't know a singe word to Away in A Manger.   I downloaded this file from etsy and printed them at Staples on cardstock- hoping it would last several holidays. Then a piece of double stick tape got caught on one and ripped it. So much for that. I hung them up across our door frame because I hoped that me looking at them every night during dinner would help me remember. 



I decided to introduce them and our activities at our Welcome Back Joe Elf on the Shelf breakfast. Hanging them ended up being a disaster. Camryn got in my ribbon drawer and strung 500 yards of ribbon all over the house. After we ate I did dishes. Jay and Cade rolled ribbon. We didn't start our activities until the 6th so we had to catch up. Camryn lost interest and was running around. I was screaming to be heard. Awesome. 


Activity #1. I bought window markers thinking it would be a lot of fun. How Camryn wrote on the frame with us standing there I will never know. Now I have a permanent reminder of this idea.  On the window frame. 

Activity #2-Read a Christmas story. I ended up reading a book to myself while she ran around singing Jingle Bells. Cade laid on the floor looking pained. 

Activity #3- Bake Reindeer Cookies. The package came with 2 dozen. The plan was to bake 12 that day and bake. 12 more later on. Camryn woke up from a nap in a foul mood asking for reindeer cookies, which were already gone. We had to bake the other dozen so now I'm short an activity. 

Activity #4-was making hot cocoa. Camryn wanted to jump ahead and color a Christmas picture. We all sat around coloring pictures and drinking coca. It was fun until Camryn chewed the ends off of 3 crayons.

Activity #5- Go to a Christmas party. That one was easy.

Activity #6-Didn't happen. Jay was gone and I needed to finish a Christmas present project. We went in to what I call Emergency Status mode. We do whatever we can to keep Camryn happy. We were supposed to paint ornaments. Not happening without backup. Instead Camryn wanted to color. Great. She "colored" while I did dishes. It turns out she didn't actually color- she bit the tips off of 3 brand new markers. I was bent over picking marker tips off the floor. I also found a chewed up olive and several M&M's. I bought White Chocolate Peppermint ones at Target last week. They are pretty tasty, but Camryn doesn't like them. Of course that doesn't stop her from trying to eat them and then spitting them out. I got her mess cleaned up and went back to my dishes. Then I looked at my kitchen floor. One of the marker tips was stuck to my sock. I had made several steps. If it was still the 30 days of Thankfulness on Facebook I would've had to have posted. Even though I didn't participate I would've told the world how happy I was that Crayola markers are washable since I had blue streaks all over my new tile.


And that was the end of our Advent/Christmas Activities.

I don't think we will get cookies made or watch Frozen or everyone agree on one Christmas movie and all of us sit down to watch it.  The house is back to being a disaster after our live Nativity Sunday night.  I don't know what it is about our church Christmas parties but they destroy my house.  Laundry is piled up, work is crazy and I feel like I'm getting bronchitis.  Also the end of the table we normally eat on was covered with junk from the church party so we all had to switch places.  So much for me being able to see the Advent cards.  I was on the opposite end of our table with my back to them.  I guess chaos is our version of a good old fashioned Shepherd family Christmas.  On the bright side - at least none of our family members will park an RV in our front yard.  But if they did at least we have a brand new septic tank for them to use if their S*****r is full.   






Monday, December 9, 2013

Santa's Wonderland

We hit Bass Pro Wednesday night- before this round of bad weather hit. Cade had an ear infection and Camryn had a cough. Both kids had been to the doctor that day but we went anyway. We are troopers!  Actually they really weren't to sick and we knew the earlier the better to get our free picture with Santa. They are learning to be tough I guess!

I had never been to Bass Pro at Christmas. If you live by one you should take advantage of this. We were pretty fortunate and only had to wait about 30 minutes. There were lots of things to do while we (or I mean Jay waited) in line. 

They had a small carousel, train set, remote cars, shooting range and crafts and activities to keep the kids occupied. And did I mention it was free?  That nice word anytime of year, but even better in December. But beyond the no-cost of this event I think it is great that Bass Pro gives back.  We all know they make plenty of money throughout the year so it is nice to see them do this for their customers and probably some who aren't (like us).  Ok- Jay does get his knife sharpened every time we are there...$3 a pop!!  We are big spenders. 

So while we waited we...

Rode the carousel 769 times and gave
forced smiles in every picture. 


Shot a gun with Bubba's help. 

Talked to a reindeer with a forced smile and pose. 


Snacked on popcorn to keep up our stamina. 


And took advantage of their wonderful scenes for a Christmas card shot...which was an epic fail. 



This last one ended with her on her
hands and knees sobbing. Have I mentioned she is dramatic? That was the second time that evening that happened. The first time was when I had 2 cones of popcorn, a coke, my purse, her coat and her hand and Cade had ran off. She decided she wanted to ride the carousel. I told her we could AFTER we walked this stuff to dad in line. She threw herself down in the floor. I was contemplating how to handle this when a worker (who looked like he was 12 but probably was 16 ) asked me if there was a problem. I told him there wasn't she was just throwing a temper tantrum. The boy works in Santa's Wonderland- wouldn't you think he had seen this no less than 10 times a day?  He eyed me suspiciously until I could get her up without spilling the popcorn. I wasn't sure If he had never seen a tantrum or what. I actually got the feeling he was making sure Camryn belonged with me, which I appreciate. Surely he will learn though parents will set their kids up for failure frequently (like waiting in line at dinner time) this holiday all in the name of a free santa picture. If not he had better get used to it!  It is a temper tantrum haven. But all worth it for a free one of these...














Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving...a week later !

We had a nice Thanksgiving weekend. Being off of work for those two extra days is always a highlight for me. This year we spent Thanksgiving in Fayetteville with Jay's family. Here are my two turkeys...and is that not the turdiest little grin on Camryn's face?  She has certainly lived up to that grin the last few days. More on that later ...



Here is a full length of her dress I took a few days earlier. She has been full of it for days. Days!! Smocking AND a holiday theme. Does it get any better??

Here is the family picture. You'd never know it from the creepy looks on the adults faces but there was only one camera. Jay and I look like there were 10 and we couldn't decide where to focus. For once it wasn't the kids making a bad picture it was us!

Before we headed home we walked around the Fayetteville Square. It is a really neat place to go during Christmas. The lights are beautiful!
Camryn thought everything was "sparkly."

I don't know if you can see her shirt but it is one of my favorites. I bought her several shirts on sale after Christmas so she didn't need anymore...but when I saw it I had to have it. It is a sheep with reindeer antlers and it says "Fleece Navidad."  If you have the Fowler sense of humor you will love it. 


Another family picture attempt. Cade and Jay look good. Camryn and I look pained. She was fussy and that was the best hold I could get on her. Of course most of us would be cranky if someone held us like that afternThanksgivig dinner. 

And that brings us to the highlight of the whole day. Jay on a camel. 

His helmet was so tiny it made everyone laugh when he put it on. Camryn's was so big it fell off and looked like it was choking her. But regardless she had a fun time. So did Jay and so did the rest of us laughing from the sideline. 









Monday, November 25, 2013

Swimming with the Fish

Last night there was a Sophia the First special in Disney. Camryn was watching it and I was in the kitchen. She got so excited because Sophia was swimming with Ariel. I had to stop what I was
doing and sit down with her. She talked and talked about seeing Ariel and going swimming. She said that she and I were
going to swim with Ariel that night. I asked her what color her fins were going to be. She said they would be blue and mine would be purple. 

She was so excited. This was probably the first time I've ever heard her talk that much about one thing and to use her imagination like she was. It was pretty neat. She was jabbering on about the blue fins and then she said (full of excitement) "and I will have  nipples."  Apparently, since Ariel wears a bikini top Camryn thought it meant she would also have the same thing?  It tickled me. 

As soon as Jay and Cade got home I asked Camryn what she needed to swim with Ariel. Her answer didn't disappointment me. She quickly replied "blue fins and nipples."  Jay walked out of the room mumbling something about not wanting to hear anymore. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Hey What's the Big Idea

That is one of Camryn's phrases. I love every time I hear her exclaim it. Yes, it is yet another thing she learned from TV. 

But it seems fitting for how I feel today after reading blog #573 of why it is or isn't ok to start listening to Christmas songs. Really...why do I need a complete strangers approval or disapproval if I feel like listening to Bing Crosby non-stop starting now or last June?  I actually skimmed a blog post stating that they were against it because they were never allowed to listen to them as children prior to Thanksgiving but then decided this year it was ok to listen to them now because they are peaceful. The author stated it was ok because she was remembering the reason why we celebrate Christmas, etc, etc, etc. 

I guess it struck me as a little self righteous and a whole lot of annoying. And yes I realize I'm judging them just like I'm annoyed at them for judging me, but what gives people the gall to say what is always right and what is always wrong. I guess my Bible left out the chapter in the Gospels adding the 11th commandment...thou shall not put up a single piece of holly nor sing along with Bing prior to Thanksgiving. 

I realize I don't talk about my faith on here all the time or have sticky sweet posts talking about different heart issues I or my neighbors have. I'm just not that kind of person. I'm not sticky sweet and I don't try to make every post book material.  I don't plan to make everyone who reads my posts think wow, her heart is so great and mine is crap.  Don't get me wrong- I read a lot of great blogs by Christian women whom I love. I also have read some that raise my blood sugar level 100 pts. 

So here it is in a nutshell. I'm a Christian and I love The Lord. I also love Christmas and Christmas music and buying presents and decorating my house and looking at lights and Christmas decorations at the mall. I love hearing Christmas songs play while I'm shopping and I love looking at the greenery swags hanging from the mall ceiling. I also love red, orange and brown leaves and pilgrims and turkeys and the pumpkins on my bookshelf. And the holidays to me are just wrapped up in one gloriously wonderful time of the year full of beautiful scenery, great music (Bing Crosby Christmas on Pandora), fun times with family and friends and really cheesy but oh so fun to watch movies on Hallmark. It is also marked by the stressful, fun, and sobering time of organizing and putting on our live nativity at church. Do you know how many times I've worked the music while shivering wondering at the awe of Mary giving birth next to animals?  Was it cold?    Was she shivering between labor pains? Our little rendition is pretty great so how much more awesome would the real thing had been like in Bethlehem? Yes, all real thoughts I've pondered...I also usually have the music I want to use picked out prior to Thanksgiving.  Honestly I really don't try to separate all of these in my mind. They are just one large wonderful event to me.

I know not everyone loves Christmas music and that is ok. But don't confuse your dislike of it with Christmas becoming too commercialized. Just because I love it and could listen to it in June doesn't mean I have no idea what the true meaning of Christmas is. Also, don't imply that I'm making it not so special by not saving my decorations or music until exactly 25 days prior. I look at it as I'm extending that wonderful time period for as long as I can without looking weird. Because we've all wondered about the house still plugging in their lights in March...but it does make me smile when I see that.  

So I say crank up the Bing, plug in the lights, throw the ceramic turkeys down on the table and just enjoy this time of year. Every single feather, pilgrim hat made out of construction paper, dry turkey, Christmas lights, and carols possible this year. AND if you still feel like Bing January 2nd then go for it!!! You might just keep your volume down so the people next to you at work don't think you are completely crazy. 

And because I can't let this go- why would you ever outlaw your kids from listening to Christmas songs?  Metallica, Marilyn Manson and whatever other creepy group you can think of yes by all means don't allow that in your house- but Jingle Bells on Nov 1??? In sorry, but that is a little weird. 

How much she has grown...


We got a rocking horse for Camryn's 2nd Birthday. She was terrified of it. We had to put it in a corner of her room and forget about it. This morning she was trying to ride a stuffed horse so I got the rocking horse out for her. She loved it. And her feet were touching the carpet and her knees were even a little bent. This picture was taken at her birthday party May 26th. My baby is growing up!




Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The terrible almost 2.5 year old

After a summer of wanting to drive by my house almost every night, Camryn seemed to calm down. I didn't dread going home nearly as much this fall as I did all summer. I really did not want to go home most evenings. You can think I'm terrible if you want - but I'm just keeping it real. Camryn drove me nuts for 3-4 very long months. Then September hit and it was like I got my sweet girl back. She was fun, I enjoyed being around her and taking her places again. Then this weekend hit and we seem to be headed into another rocky parenting stretch. Being a parent is nothing but a big cycle of different things. You get past one hump only to have something else take its place. 

 Saturday, after an all night lock-in where Jay and I split up our time so neither would be completely miserable, I left the house to get my hair done. I felt a little bad about it, but not a lot....but at least enough to text Jay while I was processing to ask if they were doing ok. It took awhile for him to respond. This is what I got back....Yes, after I changed the poopy diaper, cleaned up the water in the kitchen chair (which had been poured from one mixing cup to another), then stopped her from bathing Mickey in the upside down princess bed. Oh...I was sorry I asked. 

 So this weekend the wrath of her daddy was turned on. She has turned into a snotty pants who is getting in to things that she knows better than to do. The wooden spoon had to make its appearance. With Cade it really didn't take long to get him out of this snotty stage, but I think Camryn is going to take longer. Last night I told her if she didn't come here right now I would spank her. She obliged but as she was laying down so I could change her she said "this is fun." I asked what was fun and she said "spankings, I like spankings." Ok - she is going to be a bit more difficult to discipline than her brother. 

 Then on top of the snotty/dirty look phase she is back into her ornery destructive pattern. Last night she opened the truck door, while the truck was moving. She also unscrewed a light bulb from a Christmas strand of lights and stuck her finger in it...while the lights were plugged in. And she got some song lyrics mixed up and was singing about a monkey being drunk and sliding down an elephants trunk. 

 No wonder I just got my hair colored Saturday and I already saw a gray strand peeking out of it today. This girl is going to gray me quickly....but oh her sweet little hugs are so worth it all. This is the look that Jay refers to as being on the prowl for something to destroy.




Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Last football game...finally

We had our last football game this weekend. And in our true fashion of course it had to go out with a bang. If you know me at all you know that two things that I like least of all are football and traveling in a group. This weekend I endured two days of both of those. Fun times, fun times...

The boys actually did very well. I'm sure the other parents would tell you they weren't surprised. Jay and I are honest enough to tell you we about fell over when we won our two games Saturday. We played for first place Sunday afternoon. The boys didn't win that game, but we were still proud of them. For the briefest of brief moments I allowed myself to be the tiniest bit sad about watching Cade play football for the last time. When we got in the van to head home Cafe said "well I might play again next year."  There may have been some tears shed. 


On the group traveling. I do not like it. I'm somewhat of a lone wolf. I prefer to travel in a small circle. Sixty of us crowding around a buffet stresses me out. I mean it seriously stresses me. I can not handle the chaos. Jay told me I wouldn't make it as a teacher.  I'm well aware of that. That's why I work in a building full of other adults. Lunch there does not cause
Panic attacks. At least we had our own room. If I had to share with another boy I would've had a meltdown. I tried explaining it this way to Jay. There are
some things I prefer to keep private-
Like how I look first thing in the morning. I will share every part of our fertility story without batting an eye, but I do not want Cade's friends parents to see me without my makeup. 



I did have a good time going to Wal Mart with one of the other moms and her 4 yr old and new baby. I find their 4 year old to be extremely interesting to watch. He makes me laugh because he is all boy. I didn't mind helping, but I was so glad
we didn't have Camryn. Thanks to Jim and Sharon for watching her. We all (Camryn included) enjoyed our weekend with her being back home. 






Friday, November 1, 2013

Happy Halloween!

We had a little cheerleader last night. We bought this outfit  for Avery for her 2nd or 3rd birthday. I know when I bought it my heart was in some of the worst of our infertility pain. I actually bought it right after Christmas and held on to it for 6 months. At the time I wasn't sure
I believed we would ever have another baby. I certainly never would've let  myself dream that someday I would have a little girl that Avery could pass it back to.  Time marched on and I forgot about the Chiefs uniform. 

This fall when we were talking costumes I was thinking Cinderella or Dorothy. But that would've required work!  I was going through Camryn closet and found this. I decided it would be an easy way out this year. I still didn't think about it much until last
night when we were Trick or Treating. It hit me how God is still redeeming things in my life from that time period. It took almost 5 years from when I bought this  to see it. I still remember the feeling of that pain but I'm so thankful that it has been replaced with happiness. With all the controversy with Halloween in Christian circles God used it to once again remind me of His love for me. 

And how perfect that the year Camryn could wear it the Chiefs are 8-0. That is definitely a God thing!  Haha!!



Monday, October 28, 2013

Excuse Me Ma'am

Just have to quickly share this because I thought it was so cute. Last night I was hanging up clothes in Camryn's room. She was walking around holding a book and jabbering to herself. All of a sudden I realized she was saying the same thing over and over and looking at me. She said "excuse me ma'am, I need this toy in the den." The excuse me ma'am was definitely a new thing. Also calling our family room the den was new. Jim and Sharon have a room that they call the den so I know that's where she had heard it before. She seems like she is growing up more and more every day.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Things that make me wonder if I'm losing my mind....

I think this is stress related. I say that because every muscle in my neck and back is like a stretched out rubber band. When you press on my shoulder muscles it feels like rocks. Ok - I hope this is stress realted, because some of it is a little concerning. If you all notice me doing weird things please let me know. I keep asking Jay everyday if I seem weird. He just rolls his eyes... 

1. The last two times I've been at Wal-Mart the poor cashier has had to chase me down with a forgotten bag. Last time it was eggs. The time before that it was a whole sack of stuff. Which in Wal-Mart terms was like $50. What is also embarassing is that they finally caught me at the door. Were they yelling "Ma'am" the whole time and I didn't hear them? So besides worrying about my mind that also has made me wonder if I'm also losing my hearing? 

2. I keep having the same internal conversation with myself, over and over and over. Yesterday Ryan asked me through email to order an appraisal. Every time I'd think about needing to do it I would have the same thought....he didn't tell me who to order it from...did I miss seeing where to order it from....I need to find out....oh wait, it is the kind of appraisal I need to order centrally. I probably repeated that same thing 10 times in my head yesterday. 

3. I re-read what I type and I don't seen to be even useing the correct words. Or I leave out sentences that make the whole email a confusing mess. I had to change three of four different words in just the last three lines on this blog post! 

4. I'm possibly telling and re-telling the same story to the same person repeatidly. If that person happens to be you, please let me know. Don't just smile like you've never heard it before and then talk to your spouse about what a nutjob I'm turing in to. 

Now that I think about it some of it could be hypothermia. I spend a lot of the day shivering because my office is so cold. Right now the A/C is blowing down on the top of my head. It is hard to hit the right letters on the keyboard when you can't feel your fingers. Ok - I'm going to go with the hypothermia excuse. But if anyone is looking for a office warming gift (like literally an office warming gift) here are some ideas... 
A coat...preferably one made out of a bear hide. 
fingerless gloves 
a fire pit...pretty self-explainatory 
Ear Muffs or hat with the ear flaps Scarves, because they are a "hot" accessory right now - like in they make me sweat sometimes but they are also really in style 
Some of those cute boot socks because I wear boots almost every day in the winter and they are stylish but would also add another layer of warmth 

Ok, when I re-read what I just typed above I had to change several words. I think my shivering is causing my fingers to jump around to the wrong line of keys on my keyboard. Yep - I'm definitely dignosing myself with work induced hypothermia. I'm sure in office buildings across America it is extremely common.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Haircuts

Someone got a haircut last week. I love bobs on little girls. Camryn's hair was
Getting a little unruly and Jay asked me to cut it. So we cut quite a bit off but I think it looks cute. 

This was at the pumpkin patch right before the cut. 


This was after the cut. Of course she had not interest in letting me take a
Picture Sunday morning. 







Saturday, October 19, 2013

People Watching at a 10 & 11 Year Old Football Game...

Or maybe I should call it Parent Watching...

Cade was on a good football team this year. Whenever his class is with the grade behind them they are great. Two years ago they won the Super Bowl (Cade is still upset he didn't play that year). This year (until today) they were undefeated. When Cade's group is with the grade ahead of them they (to put it gently) stink. I can't remember their record last year but they didn't win many. And I think we all still have nightmares from the flag football year when we got humiliated every game in Mt Vernon. But I think everyone expects big things from these 5th and 6th graders. So it was quite disappointing for a lot of people today. And, in case someone who reads this is offended by my observations, just remember this is all relative. I may not have cared today but when Cade is on an awesome FFA team and if they would happen to get beat I would be disappointed. 

So with my disclaimer done just let me say Holy Cow!!!  It was a mixture of disappointing and funny today. Quite honestly I was embarrassed and a little sad for some of those parents. And I said some. Obviously I didn't witness the reactions of all of them- just the few I was fortunate enough to be siting within ear shot of. 

Holy Cow. It just had to be said again. You would have thought someone's life hung in the balance on the outcome of today's game. I'm not sure I've seen adults use such terrible language over a game. These parents were angry that we lost. I heard every cuss word imaginable. Even the F word was used in the bleacher directly above where Camryn was standing. It is good thing it wasn't uttered again because this Mama was going to tell him not say that in front of my baby if it was. Jay is probably thankful he didn't have to pull my hands off is this man's throat. He was about to get a letter delivered in person!! I also heard plenty of foul language coming from a couple of men who paced the field the whole game. It was definitely not a classy way to end the season. 

What made me sad for them is that I really think there are a lot of parents who are reliving their HS days through their kids. I wonder if the best days of their lives happened when they played football? That is sad. We hope for such more for Cade then that. If he wants to play football that is great. We will support him in everything...but does that define him or change how Jay and I feel about him?  Absolutely not. Mr F man used that word about a kid that did something he shouldn't have done on the field. Of course I have no idea what it was. The man said something about how if he (meaning the man) had done that in HS he would've got his A** kicked. And that there sums up a lot of the mentality I witnessed (or heard) today. These poor kids aren't in HS. They are 10 and 11. And they are still babies with their whole lives ahead of them. Their whole lives that can be filled with so many wonderful things that today will just be the tiniest blip in their timeline. 

Now that I'm off my soapbox here is the funny part. Jay was standing somewhere
else. When the writing was on the wall he came sat down beside me. I told him he had better grab Camryn as soon as this was over so we could escape the brawl. I  also asked (in a whisper) if we were the only ones happy. That then made me laugh. I'm pretty sure I was the only parent who laughed at that moment so I figured I'd better straighten up. 

Yes , I am not a football mother. Actually I'm not a sports mother...or even a sports person at all. I'm probably the only HS cheerleader in America who secretly hoped her team would loose all of their tournament games. Sheldon boys held the record for the most losses in Missouri for several years. But of course we would seem to win every tournament game that meant we would have to travel back on a Saturday. So after some deep soul searching I think my issue is with sports that screw up my whole Saturday....but then I'm also not big on games during the week either when I've worked all day and then have to work the next day...or when it is too hot or too cold...or when I can't decide on the right outfit- you know that mixture of cute casual, etc. Yeah, it's
Just not my thing. But that is ok because other parents probably won't obsessively refresh Judging Card.com during March.  That is more the "thing" for us. 

I also had to laugh when Cade told me all  but 5 of the boys were crying after the game. Three of the ones not crying were Cade and two brothers (3 of the benchwarmers). The mom of the two brothers told me that the boys had asked her that since they joined band did that mean they didn't have to play football anymore. She told them to not ask their dad that question. I still laugh about that story every time I think about it. So I wasn't surprised they weren't upset. And obviously the Shepherd's weren't crying. While Jay was listening in at the huddle I was trying to figure out how to keep from dancing a jig all the way to the van. Then Jay came back from the huddle and announced we had yet another
game Tuesday night. Our season was in fact not quite finished. So the Shepherd's weren't exactly tear free either after the game. 

And another clarification so I don't sound like a complete bore. I enjoy games and socializing. I also enjoy the excitement...like a cool night and the band playing, etc. I like the atmosphere. It is the actual game that bores me. I can't follow it and I loose track of Cade all the time. All the time. Jay is constantly having to tell me "he's in."

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Dear Diary-How the Transition is Going...

Day 1
Camryn was sick, Jay stayed home with her. I was late to work because the ramp to get on I44 was closed. I had to detour through Halltown behind a car going 50mph. Oh well...I decided I might as well not start under any false pretenses. I will rarely be early. I wore a new dress and the buttons kept popping open. Thankfully Tera had safety pins. We had our first "issue" concerning how things were down differently between the two offices. Pam had a miserable day because of that. 

Day 2
We cleaned out Mt Vernon and got to work late. The differences between the two offices reared up even more. Poor Pam was in tears most of the day. I was about to pull my hair out. I also got the 3rd degree on lunch times. I will have to put my foot down on that one...no one will set my lunch time. Im quickly learning that "go with the flow" or "back off it is only the 2nd day we've been here" is not part of some people's vocabulary.  If this continues I will have to start the letter writing campaign again.

Day 3
I went to the bathroom and for some weird reason I turned to the left instead of heading straight into the women's. I knew none of that felt right but it took me a second to process it before I could stop myself. I'm still considering this day a success because I did not actually go in the men's bathroom AND thankfully no one saw this go down. If someone had walked out about the time my nose was inches from the door I might had to find myself a different job. 

Day 4
Spent the day in Joplin. Being there gave me plenty of stories..which I won't tell. Jade can thank me later. I was called old and I dispensed more advice on wearing colored pants. All in all I'm considering Thursday a success. 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Moving and Menopause

Menopause is scary. I used to worry about all kinds of diseases, but now I find myself worrying more about menopause. It is going to happen. There is nothing at all I can do about it. I'm even starting to see it's beginning stages suck the minds of some of my good friends. The only difference between me now and me 10 years ago is that I've developed more patience for it. Ten years ago I would've lost my mind. Today it still drives me nuts but I know in another 10 years I will be there. And it scares the heck out if me. 

I've heard horror stories about how it changes your ability to think. I experienced that last week. With all the packing it was easier for me to do a lot of it either myself or force Garrett to help me. Actually I didn't force- he willingly helped me sort and pack all 500+ files. Files that are several inches thick and could weigh 5 lbs. If he hasn't helped we would probably still be moving. The crowning point of the week occurred Thursday about 4. They showed up to take our computers. I had been saying for weeks (along with the continuous box count) that we needed to be packed up Thursday night. If the word box came out of my mouth it was usually followed by be packed up Thursday. A much loved
co-worker said "I had no idea we were supposed to be packed tonight. I thought I could do it tomorrow."  I quite literally almost fell over. Yeah...thats why I went over and over the packing/work plan for the week no less than 5 times. I think I averaged once a day.  I also think Jade  about lost it. She and I finished packing the rest of the odds and ends while someone else helped pack the nameless persons stuff. We managed to completely stress her out, which I felt really bad about- but it had to be done. That is where I am different than I was. Ten years ago I wouldn't have felt bad. Now I know that I'm 10-14 years away from having my brain work the same way. It seriously is scary folks. Did I also just type that in 14 years I will be 50???

Friday morning I got to the office about 7:15. There were already a few there and the rest trickled in a few minutes later. Except for the nameless person. I knew that would happen- so that's why I didn't want her to not be packed Thursday night. People would have been highly annoyed. She got there about the time the last box was loaded, which was still before 8am. I think my clock said 8:01when I pulled out of the drive. It was really sad knowing we were leaving Darrell. I am really going to miss him. He and everyone else headed to Joplin. Pam and I were the only ones who went to Springfield. 

We made it to Springfield and started unloading the rest if our stuff. And it was like I hit a menopausal brick wall. Out if the 4 of us who are in my position I'm the only one who isn't. And again it is scary. There was a lot of talk in how to merge the files, but no action. The others had other things going on so I started in it. I had to merge our files with theirs. I just prayed they would all do their own thing and leave me alone. I had a system. A few times they'd wander over and try...but I nicely tried to get rid of them. Then by the end if it, while I was sweating profusely I got a little sharp with the above mentioned no-named person. I told her to go do something else. Ok..this time I didn't feel so bad. My hair was sticking to my head because I was so hot...and yes, I know that is a pre menopause symptom. But we got things lined out and pretty much put away. There are some things just stuck in  drawers but I will slowly (and secretly) work on that. 

I am glad I was able to go to Springfield. I think it is going to be fine. I can get along with all if them- menopause and all. No, really they are some great ladies and it is going to be good. Our office is really nice and my desk is a lot  more comfortable than the one I had in Mt Vernon. Tera- now that we are working together take this story to heart. Remember that we may have a good 7-10 year run then things I mentioned above could start happening to me.  I will advance to their shoes and you will move in to mine. All too soon it will be me who's thinking is slower and I can't remember things as well.  Actually I don't want to admit this but I'm already noticing subtle differences in that area. Why did God design a woman to be such a complicated mess?  Figuring this stuff out when we are teens is awful...then we get a grip on it and we spend a total of several years pregnant with pregnant brain...we quit having kids but transition into raising them and being pulled in 599 different directions each day which makes me tired and mentally slow...we finally get them raised and out the door and then we hit menopause.  Hello hormones...I will be using the synthetic forms of you. 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

One Liners

I was so tired last night that everything seemed hilarious. Of course you probably had to be there. 

Me:  Camryn, why don't you start using the toilet
Camryn: No it is blue
Me: ours are white
Camryn: Stacy's is blue
We did finally figure out that the toddler seat ring is blue. 

Camryn:  that is Bonnie, Clyde
Is a pancake and sausage

Me: Went for a walk tonight and Camryn wore those fake pink Toms. It was good until she face planted in the road. Those shoes don't fit right. It was like her feet were all over the place. 
Jay: what are Toms
Me: Bob's are a step down from Tom's but they are better than the fake Tom's
Jay: you are insane. That made no sense. 

After a blood curdling scream from Camryn while I was getting her ready for bed
Me: clearly that shirt did not come off as easily as it went on. I think I saw what you meant about her panicking when she lock jawed on the Little People. Both arms were stuck above her head and I couldn't get the shirt off. 
Jay: yeah, I had to unbutton it this morning. 
Me: oh....

Me:  I love outfits with monograms and names on them. If I could Camryn would wear something with her name on it everyday. 
Jay:  this isn't Laverne and Shirley, she doesn't need a C on everything she wears. 

I tried to move Jay out of my way so I could brush my teeth
Jay: oh you do not want to see how I can block with my butt. It was the only thing in basketball I could do right. In my whole career I only scored 2 points but by gosh I could block. 

I was obsessively updating Instagram because my fashion inspiration was selling some of her clothes and her kids clothes. She is the one who convinced me to buy colored skinny jeans....absolutely changed my life...anyway I did not want to miss the little girls clothes she was selling. So I was bleary eyed and my refreshing thumb was worn out. 

Me:  Cade!  It is 9:30, why are you still up?

I went back to my refreshing and he didn't make it into bed until 10. 

But I won a cute smocked Thanksgiving dress for Camryn....

Worn Out

Today I finally got a handle in the actual number of boxes we had. After
Packing up our 500 and some customer files I felt exhausted. I wasn't sure if I was tired so much as I was relieved to finally have the box thing off my back. I'm sure everyone is sick of me talking about boxes....but you seriously don't understand the pressure that was on me!!  So to recover I took the kids to McDonalds and now I'm laying on the couch. Also this week our checkbook and my waist is taking a big hit. We've ate out a lot. A whole lot  and I don't really care. Hopefully I can get back to normal next week. Oh and did I mention that I've also got a disassembled stroller and car seat in my kitchen?  There is a kids clothing sale in Joplin I'm trying to get ready for next week. Hey, thankfully I work better under pressure...except for tonight. Tonight I'm in box free bliss and completely exhausted!!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Football Friday

This is our moving week so things are crazy. But here are some pictures from Homecoming last Friday...Camryn started out dressed so cute...




Camryn mus like the dirt...here is what she looked like after one of Cade's games...


Wednesday, October 2, 2013

More Box Woes

I woke up at 2 am this morning. It mostly was because I had gone to sleep in Camryn's room and she was slowly pushing me out of bed. But anyway, I started thinking about boxes again and had a mini panic attack that we were going to run out next week. When I got into work today I ordered 36 more. These boxes are slowly driving me insane. Most people have bad dreams where they are being chased by monsters. My dreams are filled with bankers boxes. Good heavens it is time to get this move over with!!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Eggs, Eggs...How Many Eggs Do I Need?

One year at Easter, prior to starting this blog, I remember obsessively counting how many eggs I needed to get through the holiday. I seriously spent a week counting and re-counting in my head how many eggs I would use. I needed some to dye, I needed to make deviled eggs and a cake...how many people would be there, how many deviled eggs would they eat. It was awful. I couldn't get eggs off of my mind. I went around all day every day thinking "eggs, eggs, how many eggs do I need."  To solve my problem every time I got close to a grocery store I would buy more eggs. I'm not exaggerating when I say this...I think I ended up with 6 dozen eggs by the time Easter came and went that year. And the funny part of the story...after my cake had been in the oven about 10 minutes I realized I had forgot to put the eggs in it. I took it out of the oven and re-mixed it. Surprisingly it turned out ok. 

I also do the same thing every Thanksgiving and Christmas with butter. I'm constantly counting how many sticks of butter I will need to make everything. Every time I go to the store I throw in a package or 2 of butter.  The fear of running out of butter at Christmas scares me.  It seriously has to be on the list of phobias somewhere.   Usually after the holidays we are good on butter until corn on the cob season rolls around. 

Currently I am doing the same thing with boxes.  Except I'm not just counting them in my head. I'm being forced to count and recount and count again with co-workers. How many do we have, how many do we need, how many will we need to pack our current files. We had a get together with our new Springfield staff in Tuesday. I swear we spent every bit of 10-15 minutes talking about boxes. Ahhh. I have gone over and over and over the boxes. Finally I said if I could order some on my own we would have them within a day or two. It was settled. I was ordering boxes. We could move on....until 30 minutes later. We re-visited the box discussion. Then I got told not to order a bunch of extra...ok...but then everything has to be packed up by noon on the 10th...

I went to work Thursday morning with a van full of boxes. Jade counted them for me and said we had 90. Then I broke the news that we could only use the bankers boxes on the files. The crappy boxes have to be used for our offices. Neither of us were recounting so we just estimated. I had to go back to Springfield today and I bet I talked boxes at least 30 minutes of my time there talking boxes. I am sick of boxes...It really has turned kind of hilarious. Every other word out of some people's mouths to me today was boxes. 

So..our move is in 2 weeks. Hopefully I have estimated fairly close to the correct number of boxes and file space we will need. I am afraid if I haven't some people my loose their faith in my abilities....

Thursday, September 19, 2013

A Bizarre Week

This has been a weird week. On Tuesday  I was thinking about something that happened just the day before but it felt like 10 years ago. 

This week has been a mixture of sad and funny, aggravating and annoying, loud and crazy, etc. We've had some medical issues with a church member and had a funeral dinner for another member.  Camryn ran around with no diaper. Cade had some mood swings and I had a couple of days at work where I either wanted to scream or laugh. Camryn has been obsessed with a book I got at the conference last week- she even took it to Stacy's today.  I also drew the attention to someone who called the school about a Facebook comment I made. I knew I shouldn't have posted it - it was nothing vulgar or anything like that, but someone didn't like it..so I will try to not have separate opinions from others from now on. Jay got a letter from the little girl who irritated him a couple of weeks ago. They are hung in a place of honor on our fridge. 

Back to the Facebook comment- I'm still irritated about it but I'm trying to channel my inner Christian spirit and not harbor a grudge.  But it is hard.  I keep revisiting It over and over...but I have to let it go. It to shall pass.... 

And today is only Thursday...


Please ignore the chips on the floor that are on top of a huger water spot. She had spilled a big cup of water earlier in the evening. 

Monday, September 16, 2013

A side note to the day in the life...

This has been a strange day. It started out fine but them got a little crazy towards the end. I also forgot to mention Jay talking to Cade's teachers- which means we will probably be marked again. We've been marked all through elementary. But the crowning moment of the day was when the locks got changed in the school doors and Jay is now locked out of his shop. He has taught there since 2001 and he no longer can go in his shop door. We were talking about the amount of homework Cade has and Jay said he agreed there was too much...but what does he know since he doesn't even have a key to his shop. Is it just me or do people not use their heads anymore?  I told him to try to let it settle out on its own. Surely something that stupid will eventually take care of its self...But the principal did finally see that Lyle might need a key to the meats lab. Do the teachers work for a school or a prison?  I may need to sharpen my pencil and write few letters. 

A Day in the Life

This past weekend my mom and I attended the Joyce Meyer Love Life Women's Conference in St. Louis. It was great. I'll post more about it in some other posts this week. Instead I need to type out my evening...

It all started with me buying Cade The Battlefield of the Mind for Kids. If you haven't ever read Joyce Meyer's Battlefield of the Mind in the adult version it is great. Especially for someone like me who has problems with anxiety. Satan knows my mind is my weakest spot. I have seen Cade unfortunately develop a lot of my traits when it comes to how his mind works. I saw the book on the resource table at the conference and thought it would be something great we could read together. The first chapter must have really made an impression on Cade because within minutes he was saying how awful Monday's are. I told him he needed to repeat that today was going to be a good day. As he left for school this morning I reminded him today was going to be a good day.

My day was fine. Jay had a meeting tonight so he brought Cade to me. The explosion started the minute they walked in. Cade had some homework that he had for a few days and it is due tomorrow. Jay was mad, Cade was upset. I felt bombarded. I walked outside with Jay to get the full scoop on what all happened today. When I walked back in Cade was in my office very upset and said "you said today was going to be a good day." Whoops-I guess he didn't quite understand that I wasn't guaranteeing him a good day - he just needed to tell himself it was going to be good.

I was dreading going home as much as he was. It is hard teaching your kid responsibility and not hovering all the time. Since I was trying to make him responsible I'm having to help him catch up some stuff that should've been done earlier. So after working all day and feeding everyone I'm also revisiting cell labeling, interviewing a grandparent, spelling words, reading and the dreaded math homework. Yes, if both kids weren't already in the car with me I would've drove on past the house.

On the way home I tried talking to Cade about some of his positives. There was nothing good about his day. I pointed out that he woke up breathing, he could walk and he was healthy. There were a lot of people who would love to have his kind of "bad day." He said "no they wouldn't because if they were sick they wouldn't want to do all the work I had to do." I said "well but if they were healthy they wouldn't mind doing the work."  He said " no one would want to do all the work I have to do."  I decided to give it a rest for a minute.

Around all the time the above conversation was going on Camryn was screaming for my water bottle.  I gave it to her because I can only stand one of them being upset at a time.  All of a sudden I heard the sound of a full bottle of water being poured on her lap and her carseat.  I almost ran off the side of the road. 

After recovering from almost hitting a mailbox I tried another approach.  'So there had to have been something good about your day.  How was lunch?" 
"Lunch was horrible"
"Ok, so someone must have said something funny and made you laugh or they laughed at something funny you said."
"No, the people who laugh are better at me...(and then other incoherent mumbling)

The conversation and short ride home was quickly spiraling out of control.  Thank goodness our driveway was in sight.  I sent Cade to his room to collect himself and I walked to the mailbox to collect myself. On the way back Camryn's diaper fell off.  At least something worked right on the car ride home.  Her diaper absorbed a good portion of the water she spilled.  I threw it in our dumpster.

We all seemed to get ourselves collected and after a scrumptious meal of hot pockets settled down to our work. Cade was labeling cell parts and Camryn was coloring.  I got out a coloring book and Camryn and I worked on that while helping Cade.  I was proud of myself.  I was staying calm and I was rocking this mother thing.  It was a good night.

Then I realized  that Camryn was wearing a long dress and I couldn't remember putting  a diaper on her.  I lifted up her dress and sure enough her little bare bottom was sitting on my kitchen chair.   I never replaced the diaper that I had thrown in the dumpster over an hour ago.  She had been all over our house.

God definitely has funny ways of keeping us humble!!  I'm off to check the house.  If Cade steps in a pile of something gross tonight he's really going to think I lied to him about having a good day.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Little People Incident Update

First of all I want to apologize for some of the crazy typos I've had in some previous posts. I do a lot of typing on my phone and it is really hard to catch all of the mistakes. I also swear the auto correct changes things once I scroll past them. Seriouly - much like how I know it changes words in my texts as soon as I hit send. Then for some reason when I get on a big computer I can only do posts in HTML - which is an absolute pain. If I type on a computer I have to put the paragraph spaces in on my phone. So please, don't think I'm a complete idiot. I did finish HS...even though I had to google "predicate" the other night while helping Cade with his homework....I at least recognize the mistakes, it just almost impossible to fix all of them.

 Secondly I wanted to update you on the Little People situation from Sunday night. I thought I'd save all of you who where gathering your Little People up and planning to hold them hostage from your children until they were 10 some time. I don't think the choking episode went down quite exactly how I first described it. I blame that on Jay (ha ha). He was in no mood to talk or describe with any sort of detail the play by play that I needed when we talked about the incident. He was done. All he wanted to do was watch Argo. I kept making him pause the movie as I drew a word out of him every so often. Finally I gave up and pieced the story together as best I could with the limited amount of informaiton I got out of him. Monday night he was much more talkative and I was able to get the whole story. 

 Error #1 - they were not in the church basement. They were in another part of the church. There was a couch set up facing a TV and there was a table behind it with the pizza's on it. Cade, some other boys and our youth minister were on the couch zoned in to the Xbox. Error #2 - Camryn did not bounce off of the island. She staggered into the couch, bounced off of it, hit the table AND then (rest your elbow on your desk, hold your hand straight up in the air, then drop your hand to your desk) Camryn fell over face first "like a 2x4" according to Jay. He demonstrated it to me exactly like the arm thing described above. Jay picked her up and the Little People was not actually wedged in her mouth. It was stuck in her teeth. Her jaw was completely extended so she couldn't move it anymore to get the toy out. Much like the time I remember getting a toothpick stuck length wise in my mouth. I panicked-which is what she did. Jay said when he picked her up she looked like a roasted pig with an apple stuck in her mouth. Oh and the boys had no idea any of this was taking place directly behind them. 

 She seems to be fine, no worse for the wear. She has been acting normal so I'm going to try to not let myself get concerned about the whole ordeal. But I will be cautious around her when she plays with Little People from now on.

Monday, September 9, 2013

20,000 tickets....

Saturday, which felt like the hottest day if the year, we went to Silver Dollar City. It was Cox Employee Day. A lady who worked for Cox said they gave out 20,000 tickets to their employees and their families. Twenty thousand tickets...and I saw my first two every cranky SDC employees. You know it's bad when they loose their tempers.



It ended up being my dad, Charity and her kids and me and Camryn. Did I mention it was hot?  And there were 20,000 other people there?  At one point we heard the train was backed up three train rides. Thank goodness I've seen Alfie and Ralphie rob the train and  shoot themselves about 600 times in the last 36 years. We didn't have to go on the train Saturday. But we did have to ride the Merry Go Round probably 10 times. I rode it twice with Camryn and then I felt like I was going to get sick. We took a break and played in the sand for awhile. 

Sand and sweating. Not a really good combination. Camryn did really good for awhile. There were some older kids playing and she kept to herself, which is normal for this age, but at least she didn't seem intimidated by them. Then they left and she had the area to herself for awhile. A few minutes later another girl about her age came over to play.  I was sitting in a bench trying to recover from spinning on the merry-go-round so I was supervising from a few feet away.  This mom and grandma were much more helicopterish than I was. Clearly they had been able to skip the hellish carousel ride and could still stand. 

I don't know what came over Camryn but she picked up a handful of sand and threw it.  I want to say I have no idea if she meant to do it or not. But I don't think that would be truthful. I saw a gleam in her eye when she tossed it. Anyway I told her not to throw sand. End of story. I didn't swat or threaten...honestly I didn't even get up from the bench. Well I don't  think mom and grandma liked it much. I got two dirty looks from them and then they spent 5 minutes bugging their little girl by peeling her eyelids back.  They irritated her more than what Camryn did to her.  It is a good thing Camryn was ready to do something else or the heat might have made me say something I shouldn't have, especially when they went back to digging in her eye the 2nd time.  I don't condone sand or rock throwing, but I've also been a mother for almost 12 years. The minute you act like another kid is the devil is pretty much ensuring your kid will eventually do the same thing. Now if Camryn had pushed the girl down and started throwing punches I would've understood the dirty looks, but come on...they are toddlers!!!


After that I convinced Camryn to let Papa take her on the mere-go-round. I had to leave to get everyone water. That turned out to feel like the equivalent of trekking across the Sahara. When I got back I waited for the ride to end so I could rescue Papa Kerry. My poor dad...he was drenched in sweat. He handed her back to me and said "she is a chunk!!"  We decided we'd had enough and it was time to leave!

We did eat at Lamberts that afternoon!  That was fun-and really good!  It was a fun trip and I'm glad we all got to go. We missed Cade, but he was at a 4-H Livestock Judging contest. 

Jay had an altercation of his own at the contest. A bratty girl who is Cade's age was on the team. While Jay was trying to take a team picture she kneed Cade in the thigh. I'm pretty sure Jay lost his mind with this girl. I talked to him awhile later and his blood pressure was just returning to normal. He wants to send a letter! But he got the ultimate modern day revenge. He cut her out of the team picture he put on Facebook. Take that!!!

You can see her elbow next to Cade. And yes, Jay is FB friends with her mom. 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A Little People Warning

Tonight I met my friend Sandra for dinner and then we went to Starbucks for coffee. We only get to do that once every 6 months or so, so it was fun to catch up. After I got home though I found out I may not be allowed to do that anymore...

I left a little after 1 this afternoon. Before meeting Sandra I ran to Joplin to take care of a couple of errands. Then we met at 4 and I got home at 9. As soon as I walked in I could tell Jay had that look. It is the same look that I have when I've been left alone for too long. The look that says both kids are in bed and I need to sit in the chair with no one bothering me for awhile. I knew something was wrong. 

I asked how Camryn was. He said she was fine. I knew Cade was going through some 11 year old stuff today so that was part of his problem but I knew that wasn't all so I prodded some more. Finally he told me about youth group...

They ate pizza and played video games tonight. Jay kept Camryn with him
all night. They were walking around and she was holding a Little People person. They walked into the church basement and Jay stopped to get a piece of pizza. He said all of a sudden Camryn started staggering around and bouncing off the island like a ping pong ball. He picked her up to see what the problem was. The Little People person was standing up in her mouth lodged between her tongue and roof of her mouth. Jay thinks it scared Camryn so much she held her breath and started to pass out. She wasn't actually choking on it, it was just stuck. Jay quickly jerked it out and then Camryn screamed for 30 minutes. 

Jay told me the story and then immediately turned his movie back on. Wait...you just told me you think she passed out and then you turn the TV back on???  I made him pause it and go over the story again. Then I had to make sure she was acting normal afterwards. He said she was. After the second telling I decided to leave him alone so he
could de-stress. I do know how he is feeling.

  I also tried to not let it bother me. From the time Camryn was tiny she was a breath holder. Anytime she would get hurt her mouth would open but no sound would come out. It would scare me enough I was tempted to shake her. I've actually seen her start to turn blue from this trick. But then she would finally let out the biggest wail you've ever heard and she would start breathing again.  I know it is common- but it is definitely scary when you see your child do it.  

Leave it to Camryn to take an age appropriate toy and figure out how to make it dangerous. I said "great, now we can't even let her play with those?"  Jay said "oh, I don't think she will ever put them in her mouth again."  Let's just hope we all learned our lesson with the Little People!!

Friday, September 6, 2013

The Birth Story

With Cade I worried a lot about if he was developmentally on track. I had a book that would tell me the milestones of a certain month and I would look at it to make sure he wasn't behind. He didn't laugh until he was almost 5 months old. I thought there was something wrong with him. I remember literally devoting a whole weekend to making him laugh.  I was so stupid. 

At least I realized it with Camryn so I didn't fall into the same trap. I never opened a book about milestones. When I talked to others who had kids around the same age I never let it bother me if they were more advanced. I was determined to not get into a cycle of outdoing one another or worrying about it if she wasn't the same. Actually I think God was looking out for me since she didn't walk  until she was almost 1. When I think that she has only been moving really good for a year I can't believe it. How tired would I have been if this had been going on for longer?

But back the worrying. I didn't worry about anything EXCEPT how she compares with other adopted kids. Are we talking about it enough? Too much? Does she know the word adopted? How much should I tell her?  Other 2 year olds can recite their birthfamily tree. When I tell Camryn she is adopted she laughs and says "no, you are adopted". It is like a game. Is that bad...or is it good???  Am I missing a key moment to tell her?  Will she not pay any attention to me now and then realize it when she is 11???  What if I screw this up???

When she turned 2 I started trying To remember to mention it more often. Seriously- that is even hard to remember. I forget she is adopted all the time...but I also think about her birth mom a whole lot. It is weird. 

We have a book by Jamie Lee Curtis called Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born. She loves it and asks for the adoption book frequently. We read it a few times and then I started telling her tiny parts of her story. When asked she can repeat back parts of the story. What Color bow was she wearing the first time we saw her? (Pink) What did we think about her? (Perfect) and she can repeat her birth parents names. 

This went on for a few weeks. I thought not only was Camryn a genius but that I was handling this adoption talk very well. I could teach a class or something on it (ha ha). Things though were going good then last Sunday happened. 

We were getting her out of the van at church. I had to put her shoes on so Jay was making conversation with a boy while waiting on me. Jay asked the boy what his Dad's name was. Camryn started screaming "Alex, it is Alex". Here is a sidenote to the story. I've been listening to Madagascar in the van for weeks. When I heard her say Alex all I could think of was Alex the Lion. I was so confused as to why Camryn was saying David's dad was Alex the Lion. Finally it dawned on me. Alex is her birthdad's name. So now Camryn has called us by her birth parents names a couple of times. 

Thankfully Jay and I are extremely secure in our roles as her parents so we aren't concerned about it in the least. We actually laughed about it and decided to not talk about it as much for awhile. It is confusing since we don't have a picture to put with their names. If we had that I think she would understand it more. She knows all of her other important family members in pictures. 

Not having a picture of her birthmom really bothers me. I've wished countless times for one. I stalk Facebook every so often in hopes I will stumble on one. But in the meantimeI think we will focus on the other parts of her adoption story.

If you see us and we look like we are ignoring Camryn we very well could be. We've decided not to respond if she calls us by other names!!  Not that it happens very often but we definitely don't want to make it worse.