Saturday, February 27, 2010

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Markers: It's what for dinner

Remember when Weston was just a wee lad eating markers? Well, it turns out that his brother is also deficient in the nutrients markers provide and therefore craves them with an insatiable appetite. He tanked up on blue and green yesterday, but he has also been known to devour red, purple, yellow and just about any other color he can get his hands on. This seems to be one "food" he isn't the least bit picky about. Not being of the toddler mindset myself, I have a hard time understanding what makes them so delicious. But, as you can see, he loves them.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

To Whom It May Concern:

          Please, please do not ask me if I'm pregnant. If I am, and I want you to know, I will work it into the conversation or will just come right out and tell you. If I'm not, neither of us will leave the conversation without feeling awkward and uncomfortable. And one of us, for sure, will leave feeling decidedly worse about ourselves and seeking a gym membership. Thank you in advance for your quick compliance with this request.

Mandi Watts    

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Our weekend at the lake

We visited Jeff's parents at Lake Buchanan this weekend and had a lovely time. We ate comfort foods, watched the Olympics, played at the park, listened to Elvis music, tried to convince a store to carry my sugar scrubs, built a bonfire, played in the lake bed, made homemade ice cream, took naps, read books, bought lots of milk, visited a gas station we once tried to buy, drank Chai, rode bikes, did some serious swinging, climbed trees, played a fishing game, put together puzzles, bounced balls, made towers out of blocks, spilled Grandpa's medicine, made muffins, bought a pair of really cute shoes for $5, went to Sonic, barbecued chicken, watched a John Wayne movie, collected rocks, looked for Bluebonnet plants, and generally just enjoyed ourselves very much.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Quirky or Crazy?

We all have our quirks. Here are some of mine:
  • About half the time, I brush my teeth with my eyes closed. For some reason it feels like they are getting cleaner that way. (My youngest child also does this, by the way).
  • And speaking of brushing teeth, I always brush my teeth before putting on lipstick, even if I just brushed not long before.
  • If I'm upright, I've got shoes on my feet. Period. I do not go around barefooted or sock-footed if I can help it.
  • I won't hang up clothes in my closet until they have been steamed. A pile of clean clothes on the floor of the closet is preferable to wrinkly clothes hanging up.
  • I thoroughly rinse off all the dishes before putting them in the dishwasher.  I. Mean. Thoroughly.
  • I always sleep on my back. Even when I'm 9 months pregnant.
  • I need a Diet Dr. Pepper around 10:00 every morning.
  • I do not step on a scale unless I am forced to at the doctor's office. I don't need to know that number.
  • I get twitchy when I see wall hangings/pictures hung crookedly. I have been known to straighten them in public places.
This is just a sampling. I'm sure my husband could further enlighten you. What are some of your quirks?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

It's a loud, loud, loud, loud world

We are so very thankful that Weston's surgery went well. We can already tell that his hearing, speech and smelling are improved. It's a whole new world for Weston...a very loud world, as a matter of fact! There have been many times since his surgery that he has gone running from the room with his hands on his ears. He has found that we (people, in general, and the Watts, specifically) live in a very loud world. I don't think the sounds hurt his ears; I think he is just surprised that all these things (the blender, the hairdryer, the vacuum cleaner, etc.) are so very loud, when they used to be a nice muted sound that gave no cause for alarm. In time, I think he will adjust to the new noise level, but I wonder if, at this point, he feels that we haven't really done him a favor by opening up this new sensory world to him.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Wee Success

For the past couple of months, Max has been getting used to the idea of the potty. He has sat on it from time to time, but has never done anything more. (And, he is very particular about which potty he sits on, too. He will have nothing to do with the free-standing model, and will only use the "big boy" seat that fits onto the regular potty). Well, today he finally did more than just sit (very little more, but progress is progress), and he did it four times!! I can see a light at the end of the diapering tunnel! The first time he was successful, he had no idea what I was getting so worked up about. But after he received a treat, he was wise to the game...almost. He would then tell me he needed to go potty and expected to get a treat every time, even if he didn't produce results. And his brother was looking for a way to get in on the treat business as well. Every time Max was successful, Weston starting trying to come up with impressive things to do himself, in the hopes of also gaining a treat. We don't expect Max to master his new skill right away, but we are very proud of him for this grand accomplishment!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Life's Little Bag of Tricks

I took a 2 1/2 hour nap today. And let me tell you, I needed it. It seems that Life has a way of dumping its whole bag in your lap all at once from time to time, just to see if you can handle it. Any event taken alone wouldn't be too big a deal, but the whole bag, well, it can be a bit taxing. This week has left me physically and emotionally exhausted, and I'm glad to be retiring it to the pages of history. And I'm glad to report that I did handle it--not always with grace and style, mind you, but enough to get me through.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A day not to be repeated (I hope)

Our day started early--right around 5:00 am.--and I think it's been one of the longest ever. We checked in at the surgery desk at 6:30, went back to the pre-op room around 7:30 (where we met with the entire team of caregivers and played with lots of fun toys), and then turned our sweet boy over to the surgeon around 8:15. Then we waited. And in the words of Inigo Montoya: I hate waiting. The surgery was supposed to last an hour, but ended up being about an hour and a half because Weston had lots of mucous in his lungs and sinuses that had to be removed and which necessitated several breathing treatments. The surgeon finally came out to talk to us at about 9:45 and a little while later we got to go back and be with our little man. They had to give him another breathing treatment just as he was coming out of anesthesia, and as he was very disoriented, it made him quite angry. He stiffened his body and held his breath in an attempt to keep the breathing treatment away, to no avail. We arrived just after that to a very sad boy, but our presence helped to calm him down considerably. Then we began another round of waiting--but at least this time I could be with Weston, knowing exactly what was going on with him. During that time there was snorting, crying, rocking, sleeping and a few funny comments. At one point, after Weston had been asleep for a while and woke up quite uncomfortable, he said his teeth were hurting (which was really just deferred pain from his throat). Then he fell into a weeping spell and said, "Mom, I just have so many problems." I was stroking his hair and told him to tell me about his problems. He looked up at me with his wet eyes and said, "Mom, I can't remember any of the things I was going to tell you." Later, a nurse asked him what his favorite shows were to watch on TV. Without hesitating, he said, "I like Barney and John Wayne," which the entire nursing staff got the biggest kick out of. All in all, Weston did great. Already we can tell that his hearing and speaking are improved. He still has a couple of rough days ahead of him, but at least this is one that he (and I!) won't have to repeat. Thank you all for your kind words and your thoughts and prayers. We appreciate them more than you could possibly know.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Mess on the Move

It's no secret that my youngest child is, well, something of a mess. He is into stuff the way the other two never even imagined possible. And, frankly, I find that I just can't keep up. I will hear crashing (or other suspicious noises) upstairs, and while I'm up there cleaning up the mess of the moment, he slips off to see what else he can get into. And then, it's crashing and banging downstairs, and the cycle repeats. This kid gets into the pantry, the fridge, the highest shelf in the room. He can remove child-proof caps and can disassemble an ink pen faster than you can say "Max." He can find a marker or crayon and write all over himself or another surface, while Ruth is struggling to find a writing utensil to use for school. And don't even get me started on the emptying of trash cans! I attempted to get the boys' room and the playroom cleaned up today, and as fast as I could put toys in a toy box, he was taking them out and scattering them all over the place. In a way, it is an awesome thing to behold. In another way, it is exhausting. I know this is a phase, and that it will (hopefully) eventually pass. And as much as I know I'll miss my babies when they are all grown up, I don't think I will miss this part all that much.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

A Day in the Sun

A look at the events of the day:

  • We had sunshine!!
  • Jeff made eggs, wild pig sausage, cheese toast and fruit smoothies for breakfast.
  • Ruth played her second-to-last basketball game and made two baskets.
  • The kids picnicked on the patio.
  • Ruth and I visited two libraries, gathering up books for school for the next couple of weeks and some to read just for fun.
  • The kids played outside in the sunshine and got muddy, muddy, muddy.
  • Max took an almost 4-hour nap.
  • Ruth and Weston found a gift box, filled it up with treasures from their own rooms, and left it on my side of the bed just because they wanted to show me they love me.
  • I went to the grocery store, which I will remind myself never to do again on a Saturday, especially on the Saturday before Super Bowl Sunday.
  • Weston and Ruth rode their bikes around in the cul-de-sac.
  • Jeff made yummy shrimp fajitas for dinner.
  • Max refused to let Jeff sing songs and insisted instead that Jeff play pat-a-cake over and over.
  • Weston and Ruth decided to have a sleepover tonight in Ruth's room.
  • Jeff and I finished Season Two of 24 after the kids went to bed.
It was a good day.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Second Semester, Second Grade

I'm always amazed at how quickly the months pass, but here we are already a month into our second semester of second grade. And we have packed it full of fun things. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Learned to write checks in Math class
  • Worked on probabilities
  • Studied about stars, galaxies, telescopes, and the solar system in Science
  • Made a scale model of the solar system
  • Worked on writing longer, more thorough papers for Writing class--which include an intro, a conclusion and at least three body paragraphs
  • Studied about El Cid in Spain, King Richard in England, the scattering of the Jews known as the Diaspora, Genghis and Kublai Khan in China, Marco Polo's expeditions along the "Silk Road" and a few other interesting things in History
  • Made a Jewish meal and a Chinese meal
  • Created a Silk Road inside our house
  • Started formal piano lessons with a fabulous teacher
  • Participated in Super Friday classes, which include Knitting, Art and "Little House on the Prairie" 

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Organized Chaos

I often think about making this blog (or at least portions of it) into a book. There are companies who specialize in just that. But, I frequently get overwhelmed with the thought because how on earth do you narrow down four years worth of random posts into something remotely coherent?! Today, I decided to take the first step in organizing the posts by labeling them, which you will notice at the end of each post under the time stamp. I'm not really sure why I never did this before. I can't tell you how therapeutic it was to put my life (in the form of this blog), which so often feels like chaos, into some kind of order. To fit everything into nice little categories, even if those categories are things like "mess." It all just seems to make more sense now, and that's good enough for me.