Thursday, July 26, 2012

dr appts

Both of the babies have been teething.  Last time I looked, Rhys was cutting five teeth, three of them were molars.  I think she might have started cutting the remaining molar too.  She's been very emotional and crying soooooo much.  While I definitely feel for the little pickle, it's been exhausting taking care of her, especially since Ella is also cutting two teeth and only wants me to hold her. 

Here's a photo from yesterday of my two clingy, fussy babies.  Rhys was finally laughing.  Ella actually really enjoyed hanging upside down, despite her expression.


Should I mention that I'm still wearing the same clothes as yesterday?  Oh, look, I just did.  That's how we roll here in our home.  By "we" I mean me.  I see no reason to change my clothes until they start smelling.  All it does is give me more laundry to do.

Speaking of clothes, I'm actually going to buy some new ones.  It's been a while.  I threw away most of my clothes when I was prego with Ella.  So, my wardrobe has been lacking.  My plan was to buy more sooner than this, but that hasn't happened until now...

Now to the doctor's appointment.

We had two well-checks, for Violet and Ella, scheduled since a couple months back.  TS had an allergy test done at his well-check about a month ago.  They finally got those results in and wanted me to make an appointment for him so they could talk about it.  In the end, instead of making us come in another day to give us the results for those, they decided to cram it in with the other two girls' appointments.

I had to take all five kids again.  This time it was more necessity than choice.  I could have possibly dropped Emma off at a friend's house, but I wouldn't have with Rhys...and Emma would actually be more helpful to have with me.  Plus, how bad could it be?  (why do I keep thinking that?!)

It started off pretty well.  The kids were obedient and well mannered for the most part.  The three were all measured and weighed:

ELLA
Height: 27" (20%)
Weight: 17 lbs 9 oz (17%)
Head:  18 (86%)

I have to laugh at her head size in comparison to her body.  hehe!  Lollipop!  Oh, and at her last measurements when I said she was 3-4%, I realized I was basing that off of boy measurements when I entered them into the little percentile calculator app I was using.  I think it would probably have made her closer to 10% at her last measurements.  I can tell she just had a huge growth spurt, so I'm guessing that's why she's in a higher percentile.

VIOLET
Height: 39" (35%)
Weight: 32.8 lbs (29%)

That's a higher percentage than she was last time.  I think usually she's in the lower 20's.  All our kids, except Rhys, have been rather small.

The nurse went through both of the girls and asked questions about them.  I'm not sure why they asked some of them since they had asked before, but no biggie.  My favorite question was:

NURSE:  "What hospital was Violet born in?"

ME:  "She was born at the Aden Birthing Center." (yes, I changed the name for privacy sake)

NURSE:  "Oh, okay.  Was she a vaginal birth or c-section?"

ME:  paused for a split second as i contemplated how to answer this question.  Do i answer truthfully?  Or do I say it was a c-section...at a birth center...which only has midwives attending...and no operating room...unless they do them on the kitchen table without me knowing...

In the end I was truthful.  You could tell she was so used to asking a set set of questions that she was on auto mode.  She realized after I answered her that she had asked a silly question.  And, our doctor's office is quite familiar with that birth center, so it's not that she wasn't educated on it...hehe.


(This is the birthcenter - so cute!  This midwife was nationally recognized for being super awesome, too.)


The physician's assistant (PA) came in and checked out the kids.  Then it was time to have the allergy test results and chat about it.  Through out the appointments up until now, the kids had gotten fairly restless.  They started off obeying pretty good, but by this point, they were not behaving so good.  A couple times, I stopped talking with the PA and tried to get the kids back on track really quick, but I simply didn't have time I needed to discipline them like usual because we were so short on time and the PA had other appointments she needed to get to.

Here let me explain a little better:

When we sat down to talk about the allergy testing, Rhys was screaming and crying in the stroller.  I tried calming her down.  Meanwhile, Violet hit TS, and he started yelling at her.  Then Emma got after her and Vi hit Emma.  Then Emma was telling me what was going on while Ella was flopping all around in my lap as I tried comforting Rhys.  Rhys was so upset (teething and starting to get hungry) that nothing I could do would calm her down.  She was SCREAMING.  Then Emma was repeatedly asking, "When are we going to leave?" while the other two were playing/fighting.

It had been, what, maybe 3-4 minutes?

So, I try to quickly redirect everyone and remind them about proper behavior and try to get them to behave like they're in public instead of acting like savage zoo animals that are trying to escape.  It didn't really help much.  I kept talking with the PA, knowing the best course of action is to get the allergy thing talked about as fast as possible so we can leave.

Meanwhile, they have all gone even crazier.  Rhys ripped off her headband and flower, throwing it on the floor while screaming (that one made me laugh a little because her secret bald man hair style was now available for all to see...and the headband was now off limits since it had fallen on the germy floor).  Ella was still flopping around.  Violet was trying to get into my bag under the stroller while Emma was being a commentator and telling me action by action what Violet was doing, while also yelling at Violet, and TS was sitting in his chair yelling.  For no reason.  Just yelling.  At the rate we were going, I fully expected to see one of them dangling by the light and yodeling while spinning in circles really fast.

I seriously could not believe how awful they were behaving.  It was so embarrassing.  I gave them all "the look" and snapped at them all to get under control and sit down and behave.  Did that help?  Not for more than a second or two.

It was hands down the worst behavior they have ever had as a group in public.  I told the PA I was so sorry for their behavior and told her that they usually are very well behaved.  She didn't seem at all bothered by it.  She said it was totally normal, stuff she deals with all day.  So, either normal kids are all psychos or my kids were extra horrible, and she was being nice (either way, for them they were behaving horrible).

This says it all:


Turns out TS is still allergic to peanuts.  He's no longer allergic to shellfish.  But he is now allergic to corn and sesame seeds (whose allergic to sesame seeds?).  He's also allergic to some grasses, mold, and trees and probably some other stuff that I'm not remembering.  But it's nothing severe or horrible.

We decided to give Violet a vaccination.  She faked crying during it.  For reals.  It was totally fake.  While the nurse was trying to comfort her, I was saying, "Why are you fake crying?"  I'm sure that came across really nice from the nurse's perspective.  Here this little girl is, just poked in the leg, and she's screaming while the mom is asking her "why are you fake crying?".  But I swear to you it was fake!  If it were real crying, I'm good with that.  Later on I asked Violet about it again, and she started laughing.  I know it's because she saw Emma cry when she had her blood taken, same with TS.  So, she decided to scream and cry, for fake.

Then we were finally able to leave!!  Yay!  We were free.  I was still pretty irked because of their behavior.  Emma was obedient, but TS & Vi were not.  TS was actually the worst behaved.  He lost his "behavior points" (it's somewhat in depth to explain it, but basically in order for him to get to play his video games, or do most anything that is different than normal stuff (like watching tv or playing outside or having a friend over), he has to have his behavior points (along with school and job points to total up to 100).  If he loses his behavior points, he has to do extra work to earn it back.  I don't make him do it.  It's all self-motivated by him and his desire to get what he wants to do.  So, when we got home, he asked me what job he needed to do so he could earn back his points.  It actually works REALLY well.)

It seems like my story should end here, doesn't it?

But it doesn't.  I have to tell you about the trip home.  Mostly because I don't think this entry is already long enough.

The kids were starving, and we had about 45 minutes before we'd be home.  I decided to find fast food and feed them.  I do prefer homemade meals, but that doesn't always happen!  I found a McDonald's and made sure to order some of their cooked pink slime chicken sandwiches for the kids (so tasty!).

We went through the drive thru to order the food, and the cashier was an older guy.  When I pulled up, he smiled really big, and in a southern way said, "Oh, how are you today?!"  He acted like we knew each other and had been separated for years.  He was overly overjoyed to see me.  He was a little bit beyond friendly.  He asked about the kids, and then waved goodbye to them like he was Santa Claus.  Or like if he were on a parade float waving at the people as he passed by.  The kids thought it was weird and neat at the same time.  It was funny.  (he really was a nice guy.)

We parked and ate.  Luckily none of them died from the food.  After Rhys spilled her water all over herself and her car seat, and dropped her sandwich all over her and smeared mayo around when her sandwich fell apart, it was time to get some gas.


I drove up to a 7-11 and looked for an empty stall.  Upon arrival, I saw that the place was surrounded (literally) by lawn trucks.  There were the kind of trucks that had trailers with lawn mowers and whatever other stuff they use to cut & maintain lawns.  There were probably 6-8 lawn trucks surrounding the gas stall area.  It was full.  Most of them weren't actually fueling.  They were just surrounding that area.  It was a little bizarre.  All the guys I saw walking in and out were lawn workers.  I briefly wondered if I had accidentally driven into a lawn businesses gas station.  (I didn't really, but it looked like it!)


So, I got out and was fueling the van.  I glanced around at the trucks, and one of the guys looked at me.  He did a double take and then smiled & stared at me.  I smiled back.  Then he made "the eyes" at me.  I considered glancing behind me to make sure he was looking at me.  He kept staring at me, all smiley.  He put forth zero effort to try to hide that he was totally flirting.  


You would think the mini-van would give it away that I'm a mom.  Plus, I was wearing my pajama top (it's just a huge t-shirt) with my jeans.  Totally dressed like a slob.


Anyway, the story doesn't end there.  (not to make you think it gets terribly better than that)  But 2-3 other guys came back from being inside 7-11, and they climbed into the truck.  I glanced over again, and the new guys glanced at me, all did double takes and stared, smiling.  It was bizarre.  It was like they had all been living on someone's lawn, mowing for so long, that they hadn't been around women and didn't know how to act when they saw one.  They were all openly staring.  (Obviously people stare at each other, but this was just more obvious than typical.)


So, I'm still fueling.  They're still staring.  I'm no longer looking at them, but decide to play peek-a-boo with the kids in the van (wouldn't that give it away too?).  I didn't have puke on my shirt or toilet paper hanging off the back of me.  I hadn't forgotten my pants and didn't realize it.  There was no obvious reason why they were acting like cavemen.


Then the van was filled with gas.  So, while they are still watching, I go to put the nozzle away, and I trip over the hose.  If they hadn't been watching me, I would have been just fine!  I didn't fall, though.  Just stumbled.  haha.


(EDITED TO ADD:  I realize now that I missed an incredible opportunity.  I should have totally done some air ninja kicks and some karate chops.  Maybe some summersaults.  But, alas, I didn't.  I can't believe I wasted a perfectly good opportunity!)


I didn't look at them again, but they were in peripheral view, and I could tell they were still watching the show.  (not sure what show that would be.)  I got in the van, and as I was getting ready to drive away, a different lawn vehicle drove across in front of me.  There were 4-5 guys in there.  I watched them drive by (since they were in front of me, and I was waiting to go).  One saw me, and smiled really big and stared while they drove by.  Then the other 2-3 in the back saw me and did the exact same thing, staring as they drove by.


It was so weird!  Seriously, what guys do that?!  None of them tried to be discreet or anything, just openly stared and obviously interested & flirty.  That all happened in about 7 minutes time.  That averages out to a little more than a guy a minute.  Hey girls, if you have a day with low self-esteem, let me know if you want the gas station's address.  I bet if you go there at around noon on Wednesday's, you'll see them.


Anyway, it was actually quite flattering, even if it was obvious they were woman-deprived and almost most certainly do it to any and all women.  Maybe they had been stranded on an island (mowing it) for a few years?  Or maybe they were in prison?  Because that's how they acted.


And, lastly...


When I look through old photos, I realize there's hardly any of me in comparison to the rest of my family.  I have also noticed that a LOT of women do that.  They don't include themselves in photos.  Either they are the ones taking the photos or else they choose to not be in them because they feel insecure about their looks for whatever reason.  


I've had a couple friends/acquaintances who have passed away, and it made me think long & hard about if I were to die, do I feel like I've left my kids with enough photos to help them remember me by?  


So, I decided to learn to take self-portraits.  This is one of my first attempts with the new camera.  I want to start including the kids in them so I can have photos of me with them.  I would have Tyler take the photos (and probably still will ask him to), but it's actually kind of fun to try and take them myself.


So, my challenge to you (since I know you all want a challenge) is to include yourself in photos, and do it regularly.  Even if you hate how you look.  If you were to ever croak, it would be something your family would treasure.


(If only I didn't type so fast.  It wouldn't be so easy to write a seemingly endless blog entry...the curses of being a ninja.)

hair: part 2

Here are some better photos of Rhys' hair (same as I posted on FB).  At some point last night, I switched from feeling sad about it to thinking it was just about the funniest thing ever, and I couldn't stop laughing whenever I saw her or looked at the pictures or thought about it.  Part of what seemed so funny (besides the fact that she has a balding man hairstyle now) is that most little people that I know, two of my other kids included, when they get the scissors, long hair becomes short in big chunks.  Or bangs get chopped off.  Or something like that.  Why in the world would we have ever expected her to cut her hair to her scalp in a huge section and look like a bald man?!  hahahaha!!  Or, my sweet little Rhys.  You're a weirdo.  (If you missed what Rhys looked like before, check out the previous entry or go HERE.)





See, not quite a mullet since her sides are still long.  I think I've settled on keeping the rest of her hair this length as we wait for the top to grow back out, then we'll let it all grow out.  I really don't want to do much to the rest of her hair right now.  Of course, that's all subject to change!

And, here's what she looks like with a headband.  It covers it pretty good!


She seems completely clueless as to what she has done to her hair.  We have all the scissors locked up in a secret location now.  Hopefully she won't get a hold of them again.  Who knows what she might do then.  Maybe further the balding man hairline?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

my hair!

Well, not my hair.  Rhys' hair.

This is Rhys:

I've been loving how her hair is growing.  When it's done up nice, it really frames her face very femininely and looks so pretty.  We've been growing it out.  Her hair has been growing really well.





And, then this happened:



It makes me want to cry looking it.  She chopped it off!  It's about as short as she could have cut it.  No bangs, nothing.  Just buzzed.  When I saw it, I thought she looked like a balding man.  I did a double and triple take, and it was like my brain couldn't accept what had happened.

I kept saying (kind of shrilly yelling) "Oh my gosh!  Did you just cut your hair all off?  How did you do that?!  You cut your hair!  How did you do that?!"  Kind of repeated it all over and over like an insane person.  It might not have been the best, most thoughtful reaction, but I could not believe what I was seeing.  It made me sick to my stomach.  It's not like she just trimmed her hair.  She buzzed the top of her head.  I still don't even know how she was capable of doing that.  She's 25 months old.  Clearly she is a prodigy with scissors.  I kind of interrogated all the kids, wondering if any of them helped her do it, but none of them did.  And none showed signs that they were lying.

How did this happen, you may ask?  I've mentioned I have a hard time feeling like it's safe to shower, right?  Rhys is one of the main reasons for that.  She gets into everything she can.  I'm often redirecting her, getting her off the kitchen counters, away from the sinks/soap/people's toothbrushes, etc...and trying to give her proper things to do, etc.  It's not abnormal behavior for her age, as in, it's not excessive compared to other kids.  All my kids have done it, but it's been most challenging with her because I am chasing after the baby too, and so it seems to gets into other stuff easier.  Plus, Rhys is one of my best climbers at this age, which makes it all the more challenging!

We have a school room, as seen here:



In the top photo you can see we have a baby gate to allow the older kids to work in the school room without Rhys being able to come in and get stuff she shouldn't have.  That lets them cut and glue and use markers, etc.  Rhys plays in there, too, but the rule is that all those things need to be put away or monitored by themselves to make sure Rhys doesn't get it.

Well, sometimes, little Miss Violet forgets to close the gate when she leaves.  Rhys got in there, which, like I said, she does, so I didn't think anything of it.  I just didn't know that Violet hadn't put her scissors away.  So...that's how it happened.  And, it's also why we will be locking up all scissors instead of storing them away up high.


If I put a wide headband on her, with a big ol' flower to hide the front of her hair a little, it's not very noticeable.  But, otherwise, it obviously is quite noticeable.  The back of her hair still looks beautiful.  It kind of looks like a mullet here, but her sides are still long too.  So, it's not actually a mullet!  And, she's cute no matter what.


Since she's gotten up from her nap, I've played with it a little more.  We can do a comb-over (hair from back kind of falls over it, so it covers it up a little bit).  It just looks really thin.  But who doesn't like those?!  I, for one, think it's a fabulous look.  Who wouldn't want their daughter to have a comb-over?


At least my house didn't burn down, right?!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

guinea pigs

Guinea Pigs

My sister & niece brought over some guinea pigs that they are babysitting.  The kids loved it.  Rhys was soooo excited.  She loved feeding them lettuce.  She also loved trying to eat the lettuce with them (gag).










STAIRS

Ella has a new favorite play spot.

  

baby gate

I was in the craft/school room, and Ella crawled over to the gate and was squealing and smiling.  It was so cute (usually she's in the room with me, but she decided to stand at the gate):

Still squealing and being cute...

On the verge of not being so happy & squeally:
Rhys had been walking around by her a lot, so I wasn't expecting her to bop her on the head, which is why I have these photos...

And, now she's not so happy & squealy...and ready for some huggin!




Wednesday, July 18, 2012

a little fairy & a little pig

a little FAIRY

We found a present we somehow forgot to give to Rhys for her birthday!  It was quite a bit big for her, but she loved it.  Emma modified the front so that it held on tight and fit her much better.  Rhys kept flapping her arms...like a bird...to fly.  You know, since she's a fairy.



Emma kept saying, "She looks so cute!  I just want to hold her!"


So, she did.  It was kind of funny.  Good thing Emma is on androgens (a form of steriods - for her blood) so she can lift Rhys!  Rhys likes to kill us with her cuteness regularly. 

It was really heart warming to see Emma oogle over Rhys.  It's been a while.  Emma has been feeling quite impatient with her lately (mix of a teething, curious toddler who gets into her stuff, as well as Emma trying to learn to deal with the moodiness that she has to with the meds).  Emma has been feeling so much more patient lately.  I love it.  :-)

A little PIG

Ella isn't into baby food so much.  What I mean by that is she gags and spits it out each time.  Who thought of baby food anyway?  I mean, when you really think of it, did they have blenders that could puree food into liquid back in the caveman days?  No, I don't think so.  And, since my goal is to live like a caveman, I'm not really into the baby food thing anyway.  I prefer to be more like a mother bird and chew up the food and spit it into her mouth.  Now that I've totally grossed myself out, I'm going to stop rambling about pointless things that don't really make sense to anyone, and I'm going to just post the photos.  Here she is eating a healthy pizza crust (I'm sure cavemen had pizza):

Emma dies laughing each time she looks at this pic:


This doesn't show it to be as cute as it was, but TS came over to make her smile, and she did.  But then the flash on my camera took too long to recharge, so I missed it!  (good thing I bought a new flash since then!)  Maybe I should just draw on the smile?  No, I guess not this time.




I really can't handle Ella's cuteness sometimes (I hear that parents are biased, but I'm not sure that's the case with her...or with any of my kids...haha!  (I sound really biased don't I.)).  She often makes me scream, "You are so cute!" because if I don't, I know that I will explode.  She has these shy little looks and the way she moves her little arms and hands...it's like she knows how to be incredibly adorable.  I love you, Ella!  

Ella cut her first tooth last night.  I was a little surprised.  I thought she might have been teething, but I wasn't sure.  She sleeps in our bed with us (starts in her bed, ends up in ours), and I kept being woken up at around 3-4am with this overly excited little baby who was giving me lots of slobbery kisses while I was sleeping.  She was so smiley and squeally.  Violet often ends up in our bed, too, and apparently, lately, Ella goes over there and will try to pull Violet's nose off while she's sleeping.  haha.  Violet thinks it's funny.  The joys of co-sleeping. I'm modifying Ella's daytime naps, shortening them, so that she will sleep more solidly at night instead of being awake for an hour or two!  It worked great last night.  No slobbery midnight kisses or nose-pulling-offing, but we get plenty of that during the day too.

Oh, and have I mentioned on here that Ella is very tiny?  At last measurement, she was at 3% for height and 5% for weight (at least according to the baby calculator I used to figure out her percentages).  Her head is 19%, though.  haha!  My kids really are lollipops.  That was about two weeks ago.  She has a well check again soonish, so we'll see if she is bigger percentile-wise.  She can still wear her 3-6 month clothes, but they are finally seeming to be a little small...at least some of them.  She's 9.5 months old.

Time to feed kids!




Monday, July 16, 2012

music

On Sunday, my brother-in-law and niece came over to play some music for the kids and show them their instruments.  The kids loved it.  Here are some pics from it:



Rob hadn't played for a few years, so some of the notes were a little off, and it made the kids, especially Emma, laugh hysterically.  It was really funny.  The kids also had fun pushing the keys (?) while he played.

Even Ella thought it was nifty:





Kyr turned a little bit into a servant of Emma's in that if Kyrie stopped playing, Emma demanded she play again.  Even if Kyr stopped to talk to me for a minute, Emma would be trying to get her attention and then would tell her to keep laying.  It was really funny!

TS was having fun showing off that he could pick Ella up.


Isn't she so pretty?  She's an awesome girl.

A tired, scraggly Ella looking a little dazed and cute!


And, the night ended with some snuggle time with Uncle Rob:


The kids loved it.  Thanks so much for taking the time to come and spend a little bit of time letting the kids experience your talents and gain a love for your instruments.  We love you!