Saturday, May 29, 2010

biker chick




I started crying in Walmart yesterday. (No, I'm not pregnant, although that would probably be a good question as I did have a Walmart breakdown during my pregnancy with Lola.)

But this time was just Mommy being Mommy. We had popped in quick to pick up a swimsuit for this weekend's trip to the lake. And, on our way past the toy section, Ray got it in his head that Lola should get a tricycle.

It took some convincing, but once we actually got Lola on the seat, she put her not-so-tiny feet onto the peddles and, you know, peddled. Not that she was going far or fast. I mean, she barely move the trike at all.

But she did it.

And then I was flooded with "Oh my God she's not a baby anymore" kind of feelings and got all teary-eyed. (OK, a few, maybe 2-3 tears may have actually fallen, but I wasn't a blubbering mess or anything.) Ray gave me one of his patented, "You have got to me kidding me" kind of looks and I got over it.

And we spent the rest of the afternoon dodging raindrops and falling trees (OK, once the trees started falling, we did go inside) letting Lola play with her ride.

Fun times.





Have a great weekend! We're going south (ha! I love that!) to the lake!
- Bethany :)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Lost in translation ... and some videos




Lola watched me yesterday as I flipped my head upside down and combed some gel stuff into my hair.

"Wha-a-oo-oin'?"

(Translation: What are you doing?)

Lola has been talking up a storm lately. Everything has a name in her world. And helping her figure them all out is, really, quite fun.

Some of her favorite phrases:

- "O-ah do it." (Lola do it.)

- "Ode I and." ("Hold my hand." - this is usually said while approaching a staircase.)

- "It air." ("Sit here" - while pointing to where she wants you to sit.)

- "It up." ("Get up" - while tugging on your hand or finger.)

- "It air en ooks." (Sit here and read me books.")

- "Cuddles onnry?" ("Is Cuddles in the laundry?" - this is asked with a fully stuck out bottom lip, in a soft, "I'm so sad," voice.)

- "No ni-ni! Pway ime!" ("No night-ight! Play time!" - while trying desperately to convince you not to put her to bed. Usually this is followed by "It air en ooks," while she fights to keep you away from her crib.)

- "O-ah Mommy Daddy." (Lola, Mommy and Daddy. She says this happily, while all three of us are together.)

And my favorite, from yesterday night: "I iss oo Mommy." ("I missed you Mommy.")

This happened while grocery shopping. Lola doesn't like it when our group of three breaks apart. I had stepped away to pick out some frozen meals for work lunches while Ray went to hit up the produce. Lola saw me from across Walmart and shrieked, "Mommy!" at the top of her lungs (this was, honestly, after a 3-minute separation) and so when we hooked back up, I said, "Did you miss Mommy?" and she said it back. First time. Made me smile very big!

***

Lola's preferences are starting to cause a few headaches. Literally. Her most favorite activity right now is kickball. But, for some reason, she still is not comfortable playing in the grass. So she plays in the driveway area. This would be fine if she would just play with the larger balls, but she loves this Little Mermaid ball that is, roughly, the size of a small cantaloupe.

Well, she runs up and kicks it. And 49 of 50 times, this goes just fine. But, inevitably, she eventually misses and her right foot comes down on top of the ball and she falls backward and smacks her head on the concrete. This has happened now twice in the last two weeks. It happened, for a third time, on Monday, but Lola caught herself on her rump so she didn't hit her head.

Still, we had to put the ball away.

So yesterday, when we went outside to play, she whimpered and looked at us sadly, "Ball?" She reluctantly went and played with the larger balls, but nearly as long or as enthusiastically. I'm thinking we'll take out the Ariel ball again, but try to show her she has to play with that one in the grass.

***

I have a few videos that I just haven't gotten around to posting.

The first two are from Grandma and Grandpa Wesley's visit, when Lola - for the very first time - went down the big slide all by herself.





The next one, too, is from their visit; it makes me laugh.



(No, I didn't laugh because she fell down - I laugh because nothing comforts a hurt kid like a grandma ... not even a daddy, apparently.)

***

Have a great weekend! We plan on taking Lola to my dad's place and doing some fishing - someone even got her own Dora the Explorer fishing pole...

- Bethany :)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

oh baby!



This is a bit of a dated post, but I keep getting distracted.

The above picture frame (and photograph) sits on my desk, next to my laptop. I actually have three picture frames - but this is the only one that clearly is made for an infant/baby.

I've changed out the picture at least nine or ten times. But the current picture has been in there about five months.

A co-worker one night was standing over my shoulder when he said, "Uh, I don't think that works anymore."

I didn't know what he was talking about, so he explained, kinda' gently, that Lola has very much left the baby stage.

And I laughed. I mean, I know that. But this was my "oh my God, I'm going back to work and taking Lola to day care and I need a picture (or 12) of her on my desk or I'll go crazy" frame.

But I think, in retrospect, he's right.

It's time for a new one.

Frame, that is.

- Bethany :)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

fears

I'm getting weak. And not physically (well, actually I'm weak physically, too). Anyhow, during our nightly struggles to get Lola to eat anything other than French toast, waffles and string cheese, I keep eyeing the jar of peanut butter in the cupboard.

She loves toast - and I really think she would like peanut butter. So it is a tempting idea.

But I haven't done it yet. I'm terrified.

Several years ago, I went into anaphylactic shock. It started about 9 p.m. when I called my mom to say I was itchy all over and by the end of the 2-minute phone call my tongue was beginning to swell. I called the ER nurse, who told me to come in. Ray and I got in his truck and drove the five minutes to the hospital. By the time we got there, I was pale and weak. The ER nurse took one look at me , skipped registration and got me on a gurney just in time for me to see the doctor very quickly approaching. That was the last thing I remember; I passed out. I came to a few minutes later, when Ray lightly touched my bare foot.

I figure it was about 15 minutes from itchiness to unconsciousness.

So I'm scared for Lola. I mean, I'm fairly certain she will be just fine. But ... there is always that but...

Lola doesn't go to the doctor until her 2-year appointment. So I'm hopeful I can hold out until then. But, still, the idea of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches is so tempting!

- Bethany :)

Monday, May 17, 2010

The Wesleys visit and the sun returns!


(OK, I want to be like this with my Ray 20 years from now...)

We spent the weekend with Ray's parents, who were in town from Thursday to Sunday. I think I can speak for all of us and say we had a very lovely time. Lola got lots of quality time with her grandparents and we all shared a bunch of laughs and memories. Good times.




They also gave Ray(mond) and I a very-appreciated gift: a night out! We all were sitting around Friday afternoon talking about what we wanted to do that night when the idea was raised (possibly by me) that Ray(mond) and I could go out to a movie. And, to my delight, they were completely in favor of that.

I can't remember the lsat time we got out for a bit. It has been months. Probably November-ish. I just don't like the idea of babysitters. And Ray hates to spend money. So do the math.

Anyhow, we went out and saw "Robin Hood," which we loved. (I just had one major problem with the movie, but I won't spoil anything here. I am trying to overlook it.) It was great to get out and have some together time.

I also decided this weekend to splurge on a new summer look:

Me before:




Me now:


We had a lot of fun this weekend. We spent a lot of time outdoors. Lola had a blast at the park, where she learned some new skills, and also showed off some of her favorite moves, such as swinging.










Thanks for the visit, Jean and Ray! (And for the soup - it's great!)
- Bethany :)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

1st haircut!



I finally broke down. After promising myself I would not cut Lola's hair, I accepted that it was time for a trim.

I wasn't crazy about the idea since it is much easier to tie her hair back to keep it out of her face, but I missed the choice of leaving it loose and crazy curly. (Lola gets mad if her hair touches her face, so leaving it down long and wild was not a great option.)

After yet another disastrous bath time (more on that later), I sat her down and started to trim her bangs. She was completely fine, but confused and kept trying to see what I was doing. So I gave my own bangs a few trims. She thought that was kind of cool.

But she really started laughing when she realized I was cutting her hair, too! It was pretty cute. She kept asking me to do more!

It all turned out OK. Her bangs are shorter than I would have liked, but, fortunately, her hair is like mine and grows like a weed.



The pile of my hair, obviously, is on the right. Hers is on the left.

So now we're twins: We both have too-short bangs! Luckily, I'm overdue for a haircut anyways. So hopefully I can get mine to look OK sometime this week!

And Lola, well, she's just happy her hair is out of her face!





- Bethany :)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Out with the old and in with the new...

When we moved into the house, Ray and I (like, I'm sure, a million other homeowners) had a whole list of improvements we would like to make, thanks, in part, to our regular HGTV-watching.

We decided to Friday that it was time to get started.

This was our ugly kitchen one week ago:




And, now, our new not-quite-halfway-done kitchen:




We're not done, but already, I am thrilled with the result!

Of course, it doesn't hurt that we have the cutest helper ever (who was, of course, as un-helpful as a near-2-year-old can be!):



Next up: new countertops, kitchen sink, windows and a redone ceiling. It should be another busy weekend! Luckily, though, Ray's parents are coming up for the weekend. We're so excited to see them - and, of course, to show off our new place.

- Bethany :)

Monday, May 10, 2010

She calls me Mommy...



... and, for that, I am truly blessed.

I had a wonderful Mother's Day, spending time with my favorite girl.





Motherhood has been the single greatest experience of my life. And while I don't need a special day to remind myself of that, I'll certainly take the presents!

- Bethany :)

Friday, May 7, 2010

choices

"Which coat do you want to wear: green or purple?"

Green.

"What do you want for dinner: stickies or Spaghettios?"

Stickies (a.k.a. waffles). But, since Mommy had Spaghettios for dinner, she got both.

"Play outside or in Lola's room?"

Outside. Always outside.

I love that Lola has her own opinions! But I really, really love that she is capable now of telling us what they are!

We've bene giving her choices for several months, but it has only been in the last few weeks or so that she has actually understood the concept.

Last night, though, I took it to another level. It wasn't just about makihng a choice, it was about having to make a choice when neither option was what she wanted.

Some background information: Lola loves bathtime. She always has (except for a 2-3 month spurt around her first birthday). But while she used to, many months ago, take a "big girl bath" in the large tub, something at some point scared her. And she refused to take a bath unless I was in the tub with her. This was cute and wonderful for a few weeks, but lately, it's just a hassle.

So last night, while Ray was working, I decided to make the change: Lola was going to take a big girl bath on her own.

I got her undressed, filled the tub, placed her toys inside and set out her robe and towel. I asked her if she wanted to take a "splish-splash" and she said yes. So I picked her up and placed her, standing up, in the water. She was OK until she saw that I wasn't coming in after her.

She had a meltdown. She tried to climb out of the tub and was wailing for "Mommy in!"

After 2-3 minutes, she was sitting down but still screaming for me. I got her called down enough to ask, "Should Mommy wash your hair?"

(She hates having her hair washed. It is the absolute worst thing you can do to her. She'll even endure getting her nails trimmed or ears cleaned.)

So her answer was wuick and firm, "No!" she said, shaking her head.

So I told her, "Either Mommy will come in and wash your hair or Lola has to take a bath like a big girl."

The screaming continued soon afterward.

And it took me 4-5 times of using different wording and such to get her to understand her choice. But she eventually got it, quieted down and just said, "Mama sit?" And, as soon as she was convinced that I would sit right down next to the tub and not leave the bathroom, she was OK.

She even had a pretty good time.

(And, yes, I kept my word: I did not wash her hair.)

Have a great weekend!

And, happy Mom's Day to all the mommies out there!
- Bethany :)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Just like Mama

Anyone who knows me at all knows I have an obsession with shoes.

So does my daughter:






She wants to wear heels just like her mommy!

This happens every morning, when we go into the office to pick out my shoes for the day. She tries to grab the highest, most stiletto-ish heels she can find. Usually, it's a quick "no" before dashing into her room to get her dressed for day care.

This morning, though, I let her trounce around the house in my shoes (OK, my mom's former shoes) while I did laundry, got lunch packed and loaded the car. Ray has officially entered the busy season at work and has been leaving pretty early, so I'm adjusting to learning (again) how to get through the mornings on my own. I don't remember how I did it last year! It's hard - with an almost-22-month-old - to find time to step away and take a shower! I can't just stick her in the "bounce-bounce" like last year. So I was quite happy this morning that she was content to play with my shoes for seven minutes.

Oh, and in case anyone was wondering, yes, she threw a fit when I made her take them off to put on her plain ol' sneakers.

- Bethany :)

Monday, May 3, 2010

May Day!

Rain, rain go away, come again another day…

This was our mantra for the weekend, although, to be fair, we really needed the rain, so it's OK.

This was, in a way, our “first” weekend in our house. Sure, we were here last weekend, but we weren’t really settled yet, and we had (great) company with my parents. But now that we are more unpacked and organized, we could actually enjoy all of our extra space with Lola and each other.

Our main goal was accomplished:




Yep, we got the garden planted. In the rain. Fun times. Really, we started spreading the dirt about 9 a.m. and gave Lola a rake and a shovel to help with. She got dirty, though, and got mad. Then, I broke the (very cheap) dirt rake we purchased a few years ago, so we had to make a quick Kmart run. Then, after Lola went down for a (four-hour!!) nap, Ray and I decided that we had to work. So we did. We just bundled up and worked in the rain. Since then, Ray has remarked, several times, that he was shocked to see me digging around in the dirt and mud. Despite all my camping efforts throughout the past 10 years, he still thinks of me as an "indoors girl" and such.

What else did we do? Well, we bought Lola a new toy!





She loves it! We, of course, would love to get a fancier playground for her, but maybe next summer. We'll see how the budget is looking. But, for now, she is thrilled with just her slide. And we love that she is happy.

Not everything went so well this weekend...

Saturday night, we put her to bed, but considering her way-too-long nap that afternoon, she wasn't quote exhausted. So she was singing and talking to herself in her crib for a bit. Then she began shrieking. Like "I'm hurt" shrieking. So Ray ran in to check on her and quickly called out to me for help. I walked in and was stunned: There was blood everywhere. Yep, Lola had her first bloody nose.

So what happened? We're not sure. I'm incl inced to think someone got a too-sharp fingernail up there and hurt herself. I'm trying very hard not to consider that she may have tried to climb out of the crib. The idea of a toddler bed for Lola is scary (long story/reasoning; I'll talk more on this another day). Either way, she was fine. Really, she was just thrilled that she got to get out of bed after we supposedly put her down for the night. She just laid on her back while we sang and tickled her. Once we were convinced that she wasn't going to bleed anymore, we put her back to bed.

What else went wrong?

Well, there was this...



But, to be fair, I didn't really expect too different a result. We were at the mall and Lola walked by the merry-go-round and asked to go on a horsey. I know, I should have just said not. But she's done so well with her rocking horse and such that I thought maybe she'd be OK. And she was ... until the music and motion started. Even then, she quietly endured it for two full circles before she had a meltdown. Oh well. Next time, we'll probably just set her on the horsey rather than paying for it to move...

I wish I could better explain the highlights of the weekend. It's those camera-free moments where you really wish you could somehow mentally snap a picture. Because if you try to grab a camera, you'll ruin the moment.

Like Saturday night, when Lola didn't want to go to bed, but it really was bedtime. So she dragged her cuddles into the living room and just laid in my arms while I rocked her for about ten minutes (until she got squirmy and decided to push her luck by asking for a toy).

Or later that night, while Ray and I were tickling her, watching her nose oh-so-closely. And she would point at us, indicating she was ready for the "bzzzzz-ing" to begin. (We point and her, say "buzzzzzz" and slowly get close to her, making the anticipation almost as fun as the actual tickling.)

Or Sunday, when we decided to push our luck by going to Perkins. And we waited, expecting a meltdown, but all she did was sit and color and laugh and eat. And when we told her she was a good girl, she just smiled, "Good girl."

Or last night. When following a disastrous bathtime experience, I was sad and frustrated. So I went into her room, hoping we could just play for 5-10 minutes before bedtime. And she grinned when she saw me (despite our recent hair-washing scuffle) and ran to me. She waited while I crossed my legs and flopped down into my lap. She hasn't been much interested in books lately. But last night, for 25-30 minutes, she sat in my lap while we read together. then, when it was time for bed, she gave me a giant hug, kissed me (without any prompting) and said, "Love you, Mama."

A great weekend indeed.
- Bethany :)

P.S. Crap. I forgot this whole post was going to be about my oh-so-helpful husband. I got sidetracked.

Well, here is a quick summary: Ray has been crazy dedicated to the house! Seriously. He has no time or patience for sitting down and resting - he wants to just work, work, work. Which is fine by me. I don't mind working most of the day/evening, as long as I do get some time to unwind.

Anyhow, Saturday, he organized the whole garage, went and got dirt for the garden, moved a whole slew of boxes around. Not to mention that we, together, worked on the garden, play with Lola and went shopping.

Sunday, we went grocery shopping and Home Depot shopping in the morning. And, while I sat, relaxed and watched a movie during Lola's latest four-hour nap (really, that was the second one in two days!!), Ray moved all his tools into his workshop area, organized his whole shop and prepared for his latest project.

Once Lola went to bed, Ray did this:




He made us a headboard! I'm so excited! We've been talking about this for about a year, since we saw a similar project on an HGTV show. Well, yesterday, we went and bought the materials and Ray put it all together! I absolutely love it! It looks like it was made to match our bedroom set (if not, of course, the bright-blue carpet)!

He's been great! I love it (and him, of course, too).
- BJ :)