Friday, May 23, 2008

I found it!

My camera cable, that is.
So I got all my pictures uploaded and cleared out the camera. My card was full!

So with a fresh empty card, we went outside today and I captured some of the fun.

I've heard that first-borns tend to be cautious. Which would mean second borns are... not. Alan is a beautiful example of this. Allow me to share:

Climb aboard! (and try not to notice the big weeds growing underneath)

Ahh... there we go!

Making progress! See those eyes on the prize?

And then he fell off. But with no damage. And no tears! And then what? Time to try again!

But I think I'll serve as a little support this time. Because you can see how much he's concentrating on the task ahead:
Meanwhile.... Dale's impression of a monkey:
Almost there!
I think he's got it...!

Look at me!
And Dale can slide too!
Alan's turn again. It was just as fun the second time around! Why not two at once?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Ok. I give up.

I can NOT find my camera cable.

And I have pictures! To share! Stuck in the camera!

But they will have to wait. To be added later, maybe.

Because my poor blog has suffered enough neglect lately. The blogging must go on.

And what is more blog-worthy than a surprise party!?

Around here, it doesn't take much to count as a party in our book.

And we like to celebrate. What's the cause for celebration?
My sister just moved into her first apartment! Never mind the whole 'getting-of-the-college-degree'..... lasting 3 years in a dorm is quite an accomplishment! :)

So anyway, Kristin just moved in last week and wants to start cooking. We in the fam can certainly understand. We like the Cooking and the Eating a lot, ourselves. So we decided to Hook. Her. Up. with some kitchen gear.

And hey, since we were giving presents, why not make it a party? And while we were at it, why not make it a surprise party?

We love diversions.

So some kitchen necessities and pantry staples were bought, cookies and soda gathered, and sneaky plans were made.

In attendance: me, Dale, Alan, Nana, Gramps, Mimi, & of course, Kristin.
Add in presents galore (each little item plopped into its own individual gift bag), cookies, watermelon, a fantastic party game.... and my friends... You have a party!

(This is where I would post a pic of all those fancy second-hand gift bags and store-bought cookies. If I had a camera cable.)

Don't tell the honoree a thing until she walks in the door and it's a surprise party!

(And here would be a fun little picture of Kristin walking in the door, surprised. But ... you know... missing cable.)
(Edited to add: Yay! Thanks Mom, for emailing some pics!)

Food, presents.... looks like a party to me!
Helpful hint: when planning a surprise party, go ahead and let your 4 year old be surprised too. It helps in keeping the whole thing under wraps, ya know what I mean? Doesn't Dale look like he's having fun? (And he's still putting 'presents' in a leftover gift bag this morning!)

And now, because I know you caught that reference to 'a fantastic party game' and the curiosity is really getting to you so you can play it for the next Surprise-Happy-New-Apartment Shower/Party you throw.... here is my genius creation:

I listed 20 random food items (tortillas, rice, chicken, beef, bell peppers, onions, potatoes, spaghetti noodles, tuna, carrots, frozen peas, etc) and cut them into individual strips of paper. Each party guest drew three items, and then had to create a menu using those three ingredients. They could add in more, and it didn't have to all be in the same dish, but they had to incorporate all three into the meal.

I then did the same thing with 20 dessert-type items (marshmallows, cool whip, bananas, crescent roll dough, cinnamon, peanut butter, oats, apples, etc). Each of the three items drawn in this category had to be used in a single dessert dish.

After everyone had drawn their ingredients and planned their menu, we each shared our menus and then voted on the best one! Fun!

(and genius, if I do say so myself!) :)

Oh! And the best gift given? CLICK HERE TO SEE! (after you leave a comment here, of course) ;)

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Is "bloggable" really a word?

Well apparentlty I'm all out of things to say. I've lost the blogging touch.

I think about my blog.

I think about posting.

But nothing seems bloggable.

Ahhh... and I think that is one of the signs of a good blogger... to take the mundane and either present it with humor or with something thought provoking, or even better: both.

To be honest, I think I'm still recovering from the last couple of weeks.

Alan went to bed fine one night and woke up the next morning very sick. Getting the help he needed was a frustrating battle. It ended up with an ambulance ride. No lights & sirens, 'just' a transfer from one facility to another. But yet another experience I never really wanted to claim: riding in the front seat of an ambulance with my child strapped in the back.

He then spent 11 nights in the hospital, 7 of which I was there for. I wanted to be there for all 11, and would have, but caught that nasty virus.

Almost 2 weeks after it all began, we were finally all at home together again. It's been hard to settle back in to "normal life" this time.

So what's on my mind these days?

Marriage - Greg and I have been reading through a book that has a different perspective on making a marriage work. Even before the book I thought about marriages a lot. Ours included. They are work, but they are worth it.

Parenting - Been doing a lot of reading in this arena as well. You know what a full-time job it is shaping a little life. Not to mention all the laundry. ;)

School - I've been working on Dale's kindergarten stuff. Things are coming together nicely!

Moving - Unless something drastic (and I can't even imagine what it would be) happens, we will be moving this summer. Anyone want to buy a house?

Transplant - Oh so much to think about in this realm. Thank you notes to write, medicines to give, appointments to keep, bills to pay...

But we aren't all work and no play. Yesterday we sat up the sprinkler and let the boys have a go at getting wet for the first time of the season. A much bigger hit with Dale than with Alan, but they both had a good time. A tuna sandwich picnic before coming in for the evening and ... ta-da! A nice little early-summer family... thing.

Now that I think about it, that's perfectly bloggable, isn't it? Especially with pictures. Of course, since I didn't have my camera in my possesion until after the outdoorsy family thing, that won't be happening.

But the camera is back and I think I've managed to ramble myself back into a blogging mindframe, so watch out... more from the herd should be coming here soon!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

What's a good Mom-Blog without talk of bodily fluids?

Did you know if you give yourself a drink and almost immediately throw it back up your body already absorbed 30% of the liquid in an attempt to keep itself hydrated?

It's true.

The ER doctor told me.

One week ago today, when I went in for some IV hydration.

I'll back up.

Two weeks ago today we spent the day in another ER with Alan. Who was later ambulanced to Children's and spent a night in ICU.

And later confirmed with having E. Coli.


So one week later he was still in the hospital (finishing a course of IV antibiotics) and I woke up losing my dinner. Ugh.

My Daddy came with his white horse minivan and brought me "home" to my parents' house, with a little stop-off at the local ER for afore-mentioned fluids to be pumped into my veins because so much other fluid had escaped in other ways.

Yeah. Not fun.

But a really nice ER doctor, who liked sharing his knowledge. In a good way. Not the arrogant way that some people seem to have.

Anyway..... fascinating stuff. My previous methodology has always been to wait until after you finish all the Losing of the Liquids before you try to start replacing them. But he says it's better to go ahead and start replacing, even if you lose some of it later. It won't be all for naught. So drink up.

And to delve deeper into the rehydration
of the human body, you can go here and read about the guy who has been credited with saving millions of lives over the years with his simple, yet revolutionary, discovery of how cells take in water better with salt and sugar. Ever drink a "sports drink"? It came from this guy's discovery!

So that's all my talk of sickness and such. I'm much better now, thank you. (And Alan is home and all better, too).

(And that is where I have been during this 2-week blogging absence!)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Silly me. Of course it doesn't DO anything.

Explanations for and stories from my long blogging absence will come in the next day or two (hospital, with Alan, again), but for now I just wanted to share this story:

Dale was already showing signs of much 4-year-old restlesness, and after a morning of only rain, rain, and more rain, things were about to pick up.

I blogged once, long ago, (ha - I could just end that statement right there, couldn't I!), anyway.... I've mentioned here before that Dale often has to be encouraged and helped to find things to do outside. Especially if it wasn't his idea to go in the first place.

So when the sun popped out after lunch yesterday, I immediately sent him out the door with a little assignment:

Go out and find something interesting and come back and tell me about it.

I was sure in a rain-soaked spring-time backyard that shouldn't be a bit of a problem. I was particularly thinking earthworms and slugs, and even suggested so to him.

Well, Dale, being my little resistant one, made this assignment way more difficult than it should have been.

I was sitting at the kitchen table eating lunch with my mom and sister at their house. The back door was open, and I couldn't see out from where I sat. Dale would come up to the screen approximately every 45 seconds and this would be our blind exchange:



I can't find anything. I give up.

Try again.

So finally, finally, after way too long (this was supposed to be an easy assignment that actually turned into distraction and .... you know... fun)...

But still, after so many tries, Dale finally announced:

I found something interesting!

Oh really? What?

A stick!

Ohhh! Ok. What does it do?


It's a stick.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Word to the wise....

IF you find yourself with the opportunity to sleep in one of those beds that allow you to choose a 'number' that is comfortable for you (perhaps because your 17 month old is in the hospital and you are staying at the Ronald McDonalad house so your 4 1/2 yr old could come too)....

AND IF you are so very tired that you are tempted to just fall into bed without checking what setting the inflatable mattress is on...

DON'T succumb to that temptation.

Because the bed "firmness" setting just might have been left on 100 which would be the highest setting and feel much like sleeping on the floor, except for it being, you know, less ... springy than the floor.

And then you might not sleep so good.