Tuesday, September 30, 2008

"Not Me!" Monday

Ok, so I know it isn't Monday. It doesn't really matter because I am stealing this idea from my buddy Kari anyway. It seems appropriate that it is a day late, it it, after all, on my blog.

-I didn't stay in my pj's half the day today because I just never got around to getting dressed. Nope, not me, I am dressed to the nines every day with hair done and make-up on!

-I didn't tell the baby I was selling her to gypsies because she was being a grump. Not me, I am the perfection of motherhood with infinite patients.

- I didn't let my toddler go without undies all day because I have no idea where they are, how do we lose those things?! Not me, my kids are always clean and well dressed, with matching socks and bows in the hair.

- I didn't eat an embarrassingly large amount of "Sees Chocolates" yesterday and then make a batch of Carmel corn. Nope. only health food in this house!

-I didn't tell my yoga instructor that there was no way I would take her "power yoga" class because it sounds like a lot of work. Not me, I am always up for an exercise challenge!

I am so glad I didn't do any of that! I would hate to have to admit that I don't really have my act together on a day to day basis. What kind of mother would that make me?

Friday, September 26, 2008

Toddler Safety

Some days I am a energetic, creative, wonderful mommy. Most days, I am operating on 5 hours or less sleep with a husband who is out of town. For Elie's own safety, this week I was prepared with ideas of fun things to do. I thought I might share these for those of you who also have toddlers in danger of driving you crazy.
  • Stuffed animal games: Make a train- Get a large sheet out and load it up with all the stuffed animals. Take them for a ride seeing how fast you can go without them all falling off. Sorting- Sort all animals by size, color, or animal type. Hide and seek- Kid waits in room while mama hides animal around house. Kid hunts them out. Birthday party- Pull out the hats and throw a birthday bash for all the animals. Basket ball- Put out a laundry basket and shoot hoops using the animals as balls.
  • Crafts: Tear and glue- Grab a glue stick and tear up tissue paper to glue down to a sheet of paper. Toy prints- Use paint and a few toys or tp rolls. Dip toys in paint and use them to print on paper. Marble painting- Take a large pan with sides and put some paper in it. Drop a couple of colors of paint on paper. Toss in a marble and tip pan back and forth so the marble rolls around in paint. Also fun to do with a oatmeal container, just shake it up and see what happens! Stickers- Use the colored dot stickers and make different pictures using them.
  • Old magazines: Theme-choose a theme (babies, dogs, food) and have your kid go through an old magazine and tear out pictures of these things. Story- Choose 5 pictures and use them to tell a story. Elie's stories are sooo funny this way. Color hunt- Go through and see how many things of a specific color you can find.
  • Snacks: Sorting- Dump all the last bits of dry cereal into a bag, add raisins, mini chocolate chips, peanuts, marshmallows, etc and mix up. Give a kid a bowl of this mix and a egg carton. Have them sort out there snack while they eat it. Rainbow snack- find a food from each of the colors of the rainbow for a snack. Or just pick one and see how many things you can find.
  • Hunts: Bigger/smaller- Give kid a golf ball and tell them to bring you some thing bigger than the ball. Then go find something smaller than the ball. Cup hunt-Give your kid an item (a cup or something) and tell them to go find 5 things that fit in the cup.

My child has survived this week. This really give a whole new meaning to child safety. The funny thing is, we both have a lot of fun doing these things, but I can't ever think of them on the spur of the moment when she is driving me batty. Hope you can use some of the ideas!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

8 Months Old


Today Addilyn is 8 months old, she is 2/3 of the way to being a one year old. That is so crazy to me. I think time passes twice as fast for the second kid. Here is an update on what our sweet baby is up to:


  • Addilyn LOVEs big people food and doesn't eat a bit of baby food, actually she never did. She is happiest if she gets to feed herself and can really put it away.

  • She is on the move! She gets pretty much where ever she wants to go by using a mixture of scooting on her butt, rolling, crawling and army crawling. This annoys Elie to no end.

  • She is still the worst sleeper ever. To this day she has slept through the night once in her life. Last night she was up every hour. Go figure. I am glad I didn't sign up for this parenting gig thinking it was going to be convenient or have easy hours.

  • Elie makes her belly laugh all the time. Mama and papa are funny too, but not as much as the puppies! Otis loves her and lays next to her all the time, she proceeds to pull his hair, poke him in the eye and dig in his mouth. I try to keep her from chewing on him because that is just nasty.

  • Bath time is her very favorite, she squeals and wiggles when I turn on the water.

  • She is the sweetest tempered baby, she will let others hold her and loves to play at my feet. She LOVES to snuggle and gives me big, open mouth kisses.

Being a parent of two has challenges but it is so rewarding to see the girls interact. I know we will continue to add to our family and I can't wait to see Addilyn be the big sister.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Week at Nana's

Last week we went down to Pueblo and spent the week with Matt's family. It was nice to have grown-ups to talk to and someone else to hold babies. We are now going through detox. Elie is bored without Nana and uncles to play with and Addilyn wants to be held. Its going to be a long week, but it was so worth it. Here are some highlights!

Riding the toys at Wal-Mart. Nana always has a quarter!

Playing in the "water mountain" (fountain)

The River walk in Pueblo. Nana with the mammoth stroller

Baby Addie is tuckered out from all the fun

Watching the ladies at the store make cookies

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Insanity

Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

I went to church today. Shocker, I know. I went to a new church, started by a guy I have known forever. He is charismatic, to put it lightly. His energy and zest for life is almost exhausting. I would love to say his church is the lively, fun and different, but it is the same as every church I have ever been to. Here in lays my problem.

Church equals a greeter at the door handing out name tags and glad handing all who come in. Children are schlepped down to there rooms. Grown-ups file in to sit in pews or rows. There is a greeting followed by announcements. Several armature musicians take the stage and "lead worship". Followed by prayer and offering. The pastor takes the stage and preaches a sermon. We are dismissed to the lobby where people have a light conversation with people they don't really care about, retrieve the children who were inevitably given coloring pages with picture of a white guy Jesus. Go home, repeat next Sunday.

Stephanie posted about her idea of a perfect church and here is mine.
  • A church full of real people, not perfect people or people who feel like they need to pretend to be perfect to come to church. We are all hypocrites and screw ups.
  • Diversity, hard to come by in Littleton. I want a church full of different people with different back grounds and different ideas of who God is.
  • Worship. Why does this always mean several people in the front of the room with musical instruments, microphones, and power point slides on the wall? Really, if I believe that I am serving an infinite and powerful God who created us all uniquely, then why does this always pass for "worship"? This can't be the only way. What would happen if a church put out art supplies, if there was no "stage", if children were included, and maybe even left an area open for interpretive dance for those who felt lead?
  • Pews and chairs in a row would have no place in my church. This puts the pastor on a pedestal (literally) and creates no sense of community. I doesn't foster learning or conversation. We would have big, soft chairs and kitchen type tables.
  • Toys, my church would have an area where there were toys to play with and children felt welcome to sit and play or stay close to mom and dad. There would be swings and bouncy seats scattered through out the room.
  • Good food, every Sunday is pot luck Sunday.
  • A pastor would be available for counseling. He would get up to bless the food. He would wander the room really getting to know people. He would lead a discussion, cause people to think, and have a tangible way to act out what you just learned.
  • Sunday would be a culmination of living in a community of believers who is actually active in the world. These wouldn't be people who you saw only on Sundays, but actually people who were in your life, who gather together on Sundays to learn and grow and bless others.

I have yet to go to a church like this and I am pretty sure nothing like this exists. It could be because I am the only one discontent with the way things are. I am not sure where this leaves me.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Crocker for President!

Thats it, I am running for president. I am sure I can do better than these guys and here is some of my plan to prove it!

Global Warming:
McCain-Would cut greenhouse gas emisions 60 percent by 2050, spend 2 billion a year on clean coal and work on developing neclear power.
Obama- Cut greenhouse gas emisions by 80 percent by 2050 and inver 150 billion over the next 10 years in clean energy. Get 25 percent of US power by other sources by 2025.
Crocker- I am against spending money we don't have, or taxing the heck out of citiczen to get that money. I am a capitalist with great faith in American ingenuitiy. Here is what I would do:

  • have a 2 year contest to create a clean and budget friendly power source with the prize being a goverment contract.
  • Require all power companys (who cause 40 percent of US carbon dioxide emissions) to use at least 20 percent renuable energy within five years with tax breaks for using more.
  • Increase the use of public transportation by offering companies who shuttle workers from light rail and bus stops a tax break, this decreases the amount of cars on the road (33 percent of carbon dioxide comes from viehicals)

Health Care

McCain- provide a health insurance tax credit, people who keep the employers plan would be taxed on it, urge states to cover high risk paticents.

Obama- Mandate that all employers provide health insurance or contribute to national plan that people could buy into on a sliding scale. Require everyone under 18 to have insurance. No one could be turned down due to health history.

Crocker- I don't want the goverment making any choices about my health, it is none of their business and its not why I pay taxes. Socialization is not the answer, I have yet to be impressed with the way the goverment handles big "projects" like this. Its my money, let me do with it as I please.

  • Encourage companies to have health savings accounts that are pre-tax dollars and matched buy the company like 401k are.
  • Expand health clinics, privatly or goverment run, to treat basics (anual exams, well baby, cold and flu type exams) and provide basics for a low charge.
  • Start a "Catastrophic Health Care Plan" this kind of plan is inexpensive and offers no coverage for normal check ups and illnesses. It kicks in if your out of pocket expenses hit over x percentage of your income.
  • Allow paticents to opt into a national health record data base so that no matter where they go the records can be seen by the doctor who is treating them. Have it be accessed like an ATM would be: a card swipe and pass code number.
  • A tax credit for having insurance

I have more, but I am sure your sick of politics for right now, so I will spare you for the time being. Do I have your vote yet?

Saturday, September 6, 2008

At our house

- The T.V is in the basement. It is only on when Elie is watching "Curious George", "Clifford", or "Sesame Street".

- We have family reading time every night. Usually with popcorn, after the bath, before bedtime.

- There is an appallingly large amount of dog hair on the floor. I swiffer all the time, but I have appallingly large dogs so their you go.

- We eat shockingly large amounts of fruit. Currently we have: plums, peaches, grapes, raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, cantaloupe, bananas and kiwi. It may not last us the week.

-Stories are told. Yesterday, when Elie put me to bed because I was sick with the flu, this was her story for me: "Once upon a time there was a fan. It blew mamas hair off, so mama went to the store for a new head. She got blue hair. Then the fan blew off her eyes. She went to Target to get new eyes and a cookie. Then the fan blew off her tummy, so she went to the store and got a new tummy that wasn't sick. The end"

-You will hear "ask me nicely" "try again with a different voice" and "use your nice manners, please". I didn't know I was going to be one of those moms, but I am.

-Clean is one of those things that just never happens, I guess it falls lower on the priority list than eating well, reading books, and building block towers. Some days I am OK with this, often I am not.

- We sing lots. Elie gets annoyed when she ask for a song about a random thing and I don't have one. She tells me "Well, you could try" so I usually make something up. Lucky for me she isn't picky.

- We need new windows, we are missing some pieces of trim on our main floor, the kitchen ceiling has a spot that needs to be fixed, our upstairs faucet is upside down, we have weeds in our back yard and drive way, and we need new carpet downstairs.

- Your welcome to visit. You will get dog hair on your clothes but I will most likely have something yummy for you to eat. The cob webs may ick you out, but I am happy to stop what ever I am doing and hang out to chat.

So, thats us. Whats your house like?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

View from the top

Last night I had the night off. Amanda came over around 6 to watch the kids and I went out to dinner with Matt and some of his work guys. After an embarrassingly large meal, I went to the Hyatt. BY MYSELF! My wonderful husband went home to care for the girls and I stayed down town. The room was very nice, on the 27th floor. Best of all it was empty of all other people. Matt asked if I wanted one of my girl friends to come down with me, and as much as I LOVE my girl friends, it was such a treat to be by myself. I woke up this morning after my first full night of sleep in 8 months. I ordered room service. I watched a movie in bed. I am so thankful for my wonderful family, and even more thankful that I get a break from them. What a great man I married!

Side note: My MRI is scheduled for Monday morning, I should have the results by Thursday.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Order

By looking at my house, you wouldn't think that order is something I strive for. Strangely, it is. I like routine, I like knowing where I am headed, I like having a plan, even better if I have it in list form. I am a list maker, Matt would say it is not one of my most redeeming qualities. He is just bitter because I make lists not only for myself, but for our family, and most annoyingly (or so I am told) for him.

I have some health issues I am contemplating as of late. Nothing is definitive yet, I will have another test or two, but it did prompt me to consider my life. I am currently considering my priorities, both what I say are important and what I actually spend my time doing. Knowing that there is a chance that this is the healthiest I will ever be, what should my focus be?

Growing up being taken to church several times a week, willingly or otherwise, I have had it pounded into my head the God should always be first in my life. This is not a practice I argue with, it is just one that I happen to have no idea how to go about. I have heard it described as a pyramid, with God as the base. I have heard it explained as wheel, God as the center spoke. Strangely enough, these word pictures do me no good.

I am reading the book "The Shack". If you haven't read this book, go to Amazon right now and order it. In the book, God talks about a relationship with him being central in life. Yes, God talks in this book. He describes it as a mobile, with everything floating and flowing around one central point. For some reason, this description jives better with me. Relationship is what makes God first in my life, not a preset formulation of rules and expectations. For God to be numero uno I don't have to spend x amount of hours in bible study and prayer, I don't have to be a church attender, I don't have to say certain things or look a special way. My relationship with Him will look different than anyone elses and that's OK.

So what if "priorities" are not a list? What if it is a general, flowing way of life? What if what is most important to me is what is most important to God? If people and relationship and love expressed is what is on God's heart, and I am in relationship with him, what does that mean for my "to-do" list? What does it mean for my savings account and check book? What does it mean that I spend my next few years, or my life doing?