Thursday, July 31, 2008

Put a fork in me, 'cause I'm done

So, I think I've officially run out of room in my belly. The baby is actually managing to kick or punch my cervix. My stomach is so tight that it is sore, and my belly button is starting to pop (this did not happen with Tyler). I feel like a Thanksgiving turkey!

I think it's possible that I dropped already, although it doesn't necessarily LOOK like it to me. Al thinks I have, but who knows. I do know that I have a lot of pressure and discomfort, but I've heard that you get that really early with 2nd (and subsequent) pregnancies. And I have to pee all the time! I took these pics today to see if it appears that I've dropped. I can't tell. What do you think?

8 weeks until c-section date. I have a hard time believing I'll make it that far, but I do recall thinking that with Tyler and he was overdue, lol! So clearly I don't have a good track record of predicting these things.

And check out my impressive tan. I don't think you'd know I were really tan unless you saw the difference from my non-tanned belly!

This is me, trying not to cry

As you know, I've been having a long week as is. After Tyler went to bed tonight I had Al take the Tupperware container of 0-3 month baby clothes out of storage. I figured that would cheer me up. Wrong. 75% of them are stained. I didn't put them away stained (for sure) but I'm not sure if the old spit-up stains reappeared over time, or maybe something got on them? I'm so devastated. I know it's been 4 years, but they were stored clean and kept in a dry place. I thought they'd be okay. I wasn't planning on having to buy new. Plus, I'm so sad to see Tyler's old stuff destroyed. Thank goodness his outfit that he wore home from the hospital is okay. Oddly enough, most of the winter stuff (which I won't need) is okay. How ironic (aka: useless).

I'm going to be having a party with my Oxi-clean spray and the Clorox bleach pen tomorrow. If that doesn't work, expect the tears to flow.

I have a feeling I'll be hitting up some garage sales this weekend.

As the saying goes

"If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all".

I won't bore anyone with the details, and because this is a public blog, I'll just simply say that I have my 7-year-old neighbor staying with us. She's been here since Monday. She SHOULD be leaving by Friday. It's been a rough few days, and there are many complicating factors, but I'll be happy when Friday is here.

So, without being able to say anymore, I will just leave you with a photo. It's not even a good photo, but it will have to suffice. This was today at Lithia Springs. Tyler is playing on Maggie's hotdog flotation device.

Monday, July 28, 2008

3 weeks!!!!!!!

My "baby" is going to be starting preschool in 3 short weeks. Believe me, there are times when I'd like to enroll him in boarding school full-time, but in reality I'm not ready for my little man to be away from me 5 days a week. Yes, he did "preschool" last year, but there is a big difference between a 2-day a week program for 2hrs/day and a 5-day a week program for 3hrs/day. My "sugar plum" is growing up, and I'm not sure I'm ready.


Today my friend Melodie was generous enough to watch Tyler today while I had a quick cleaning at the dentist. Tyler loves his little friend Katie, but when I got back to pick him up it became quite apparent that he enjoyed the attention of ALL of the girls, including Katie's 2 older sisters. Yep, they were all playing tea party when I arrived, and just before our departure I found him all snuggled in, surrounded by girls and wrapped in a pink blanket....and 100% satisfied with himself!

crappy mommy award

Yep, the award goes to me.

We've been saying, for at least a month now, that we were going to take Tyler to Disney for his birthday weekend. My parents are going to be here, and Al supposedly won't be deployed anywhere. We figured it would be a nice little way to celebrate Tyler, especially since his little brother will be here pretty soon and stealing a lot of attention.

Tyler has said all along that he wanted to stay at Pop Century. He's only ever stayed at a value resort, or else I'm sure he'd want to stay somewhere else, but of the value resorts Pop Century is his favorite...because it says "P O P spells Pop". Yep, quite a feature, huh? Anyway, his other request was going to Chef Mickey's for his birthday breakfast. He's only been there once, which was for his 3rd birthday breakfast.

Being that I've known of this plan for at least a month, you might think that I would have called before to make these reservations, huh? Nope, not me. Mommy of the year waits until last night. Thank goodness I was able to get Pop Century reservations, but there is NOTHING at Chef Mickey's that whole weekend. Not for breakfast OR dinner either day. I had to settle for The Crystal Palace for dinner on Saturday, which was the ONLY thing they had available.

Now don't get me wrong, Tyler won't be upset about this and will be thrilled with his birthday, but it just irritates me that I couldn't make his weekend perfect. All because I waited too long.

Sunday, July 27, 2008


So I'm in spring cleaning mode. Or nesting mode. Whatever you want to call it.

Yesterday I had to organize all of Tyler's room. I rearranged everything and weeded out all of the "baby toys". It's mostly done.

Today I tackled the baby's room while Al had Tyler outside for a while and then while he was napping and later after he fell asleep. The baby's room has been our spare bedroom/office/junk room for a long time now. And it's filled to the brim. While I was in NJ Al got all the baby's furniture in there and set up and we discovered we didn't even have room for it all even after we got out the office stuff. I decided that the dresser should go IN the closet, but that of course meant that today I had to clean out that closet. Ugh. But in order to do so I had to clear out my hope chest to make room for the scrap booking stuff that was in the closet. Thoroughly bored and confused? I am. Anyway, long story short, the dresser is in there and I have PILES of things everywhere. Some stuff is already on Craigslist, other stuff has to be photoed and put on eBay, some stuff will be donated if we don't have a garage sale. And yet the rest of the heap (which, believe me, there still is a ton) has to be relocated somewhere else in the house.

I know I've vented before about this (but probably not on the blog) but what is my husband's resistance to getting rid of his things? Here I am getting rid of scrap booking stuff and memorabilia and other seemingly useful or meaningful things, but yet my husband won't part with any of his huge 2 Tupperware containers of baseball cards. Baseball cards?! Contrary to his beliefs, these will never have value. Ever. And, no, Tyler won't want them. And then there are the endless electronics. I won't even get into that, because it will irritate me all over again.

At least we did have some down time. We took Tyler out miniature golfing. I kept score while the boys practiced their skills. I believe the score was somewhere in the vicinity of 60 to 378. I bet you can guess who won. He, he. Tyler actually did well though, meaning he played all the holes without losing interest and running up and down hills and trying to float mulch in the streams. That's not to say he didn't do those things, but he stayed with our group and attempted to golf the whole time. Improvements!

Oh, and I have yet to drive my brand new vehicle. The man who insisted that he didn't want a minivan has been commandeering the driver's seat.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

A New Addition

No, I did NOT go into labor early. This is a new addition of another sort.

Today we went out to breakfast and decided on a whim to stop and look at some vehicles today. We've been toying with the idea of getting a new vehicle for probably at least a year now, but honestly, just the finances have been holding us back. With gas prices the way they are, and trying to live more environmentally conscious, I really didn't want to upgrade vehicle sizes. However, we are in a fairly unique situation. Anytime we have family visit they arrive via plane, meaning that I have to pick them up from the airport and then rely on our vehicles to go places. Which means, 2 months from now, it would be literally impossible for me to even pick up my parents from the airport in my Nissan Sentra. 2 car seats, 3 adults, and luggage? Not gonna happen. Going to McDonald's down the street with our immediate family and my parents would require 2 vehicles. That isn't so appealing. Anyway, we really thought we needed something bigger, but, like I said, who WANTS a larger car payment? Let me restate that, who wants a car payment at all? We are currently paid off on our vehicles which is an awesome feeling!

Anyway, we decided to at least "look" today.

So I bet you can guess were this post is going to lead....

First we went to Nissan, because Al and I have both owned Nissan's (and I currently do) and we've been very pleased with them. They had nothing in stock to help us out. NOTHING!

We decided to cross the street to Honda because Al wanted to look at the Honda Pilot. I had heard good things about it too, but as soon as I saw inside, I knew it wasn't for us. Not only could I physically not get myself into the 3rd row, but there was very, very limited storage behind the 3rd row. So much for toting around a double stroller! And I'm not about to drive around a full size SUV, so it looked like I was out of luck and we were back to the drawing table.

The salesman asked us to "humor" him and take a look at the Odyssey. I was fine with the idea and had heard great things about the Odyssey. Not to mention that my grandparents have had one for years and love it. But if you know Al you know he is STRONGLY opposed to the idea of a mini van. I sort of understand where he's coming from, but in all honesty, I'm all about practicality now. The Odyssey was gorgeous! He begrudgingly took the thing on a test drive and disliked it, saying it drove like a car (which is what I truly wanted). I got in the driver's seat next and I was amazed how nicely it drove. Al agreed that he loved the comfort and we couldn't argue with the amenities. We just weren't going to get that type of storage and comfort in that price range in an SUV of any sort.

It has a "sportier" body style than the typical image that comes to mind when you say "mini van"...or at least we're telling ourselves that.
It has a really cool seat in the center of the 2nd row. It folds down to give the appearance of 2 captain's chairs (and you can even push the 2 chairs together), but it also can be used as an 8th seat. Obviously it would really only fit a child, but it's still a nice feature.
As you can see, the seats can be arranged in various ways, which I won't bore you with, but will at least just provide a photo of some of the options.
Some other cool features:
  • The video screen on the rear view mirror that allows me to see the view behind me when I back up. Wahoo, hopefully I'll never have to report that I backed over Tyler's tricycle!
  • Heated seats. Utterly useless in Florida, but probably cool once we get to North Carolina and somewhere that offers a climate other than oppressive heat.
  • Tons o' cup holders. Tyler loves this as well. Doesn't everyone love the option of where to store your sippy cup?
  • Various climate centers (or some other fancy term). Basically, as Tyler puts it "I have my own air conditioning, like on an airplane." Honestly I don't find airplane seats to be luxurious, but obviously the individual overhead fan on a plane is a selling point for a 3-year-old, thus his fascination with this feature.
  • "Automatic doors" says Tyler. Infant seat in one hand, unruly toddler attached to the other, and the option to open my doors hands-free! How cool is that? Don't be surprised if I hearby refer to them as "magic doors", as Tyler thinks "automatic" and "magic" are one in the same.
  • Storage galore. I don't know anyone who doesn't like storage!
  • 6-disc CD changer. Wow, I can have the Backyardigans AND my Wicked CD in there at the same time! Options, my friends, options are wonderful!
  • Power moon roof. You can see the stars.
  • Attached pull-down window shades (the kind that you normally have to hang up on the windows to shield your newborn from deadly sun rays). These ones don't even have Elmo on them. Plain black. Go figure!
  • Side curtain airbags. Nothing witty to say about that, but it makes me VERY happy!
Al has a whole other different list of cool features, none of which really matter to me (as they would all be engine based or something boring like that) but they were enough for him to be won over.

Well, after much discussion, we are now the proud owners of a 2008 Honda Odyssey E-XL.Al will now acquire my 2002 Nissan Sentra, as that is WAY better on gas mileage than his old clunker SUV, lovingly referred to as the "Ford EXPLODer". We figure that will save us almost $240 a month in his driving expenses, and since I don't drive too far, we shouldn't acquire too much more expenses in that area.

We enjoyed a nice dinner out to Red Lobster tonight to celebrate. We joked that this would be our last meal out as we now have a huge car payment. Hey, at least if we wanted to eat out, we'd only have to take one vehicle!

And, just so it's on the record, Al now LOVES driving it. Just don't tell any of his friends!

Friday, July 25, 2008

need a bigger house!

I know MANY of us feel this way, but I feel paralyzed in my nesting efforts. In order to get the furniture placed in the baby's room, I need to get the spare closet cleared out (we intend on putting the baby's dresser IN the closet). Well, the closet is jam-packed with NOWHERE to put the things! I feel like I'm just constantly shuffling one pile of stuff to a different location, only to be replaced by a different pile of junk. Hmmm.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Back in FL again!

On Monday we had a nice day with family, including a BBQ at my aunt and uncle's house. Tyler had lots of fun with my cousin's kids again, before coming home to say a quick goodbye to my brother who had stopped by on his way home from a long day at work.

Tuesday we did some visiting with my grandparents and other assorted activities that Tyler picked, such as a trip to the playground and a meal at Friendly's.

That night, after MANY tears, we flew home. Luckily Tyler was very good on the flight, and he was THRILLED to see his daddy. The excitement only continued when we got home, when he was greeted with his brand new furniture he had been talking about for weeks! We had fully intended on having him sleep on the lower trundle bed until he was a bit older, but he completely was against sleeping there, but instead wanted to sleep "up top". We agreed, and just pulled the trundle out while he was asleep in case he fell, but he did great. I think I will be buying a bed side railing though, just in case.
Wednesday we got right back in the swing of things, with a trip to the doctor's office to pick up Tyler's physical forms and then to Target for lunch and grocery shopping. While Tyler napped (yes, NAPPED!!!) I did his preschool paperwork and then I woke him to go to his orientation at preschool. We met the director, who was very nice, and we're all set for him to start school in less than a month. I can hardly believe it! From there it was off to the library and then we came home to make dinner and do some straightening up. I know, fascinating, huh?

Oh, and we discovered that Tyler's little tomato plants had grown while we were in NJ and he had 3 ripe tomatoes. He gobbled those little guys up as quickly as could be and said they were quite tasty.
Today I had my OB appointment. I'm 30 weeks today. 9 weeks exactly until the big day! I'm only down .5lbs and everything is measuring on track. I guess that's about it!

Monday, July 21, 2008

A Day Off!

On Sunday the temperature was due to be in the high nineties again, so my parents offered to take Tyler to the zoo themselves and give me the day off! I slept until 9:30 or so, and then got up and scanned old pictures for my grandparents, straightened the living room, and showered. Oh, and watched a bit of TV.

Meanwhile Tyler and my parents enjoyed the VERY HOT Cape May County Zoo. Tyler really liked some of the animals (he claims his favorite was the giraffe or the peacocks), but especially loved some of the carnival-like games they had to play. Oh, and a big highlight was the bathroom with the push pedal that you used to flush the toilet. He's easily amused.

They were back home by probably 2:30, but I thoroughly enjoyed my time off, even if I wasn't at the spa or anything. It's amazing how a little break makes you much more able to handle the kabillion questions I get thrown daily.

Speaking of "handling" things, I'm about ready to force Tyler's pacifier back on him. My child who normally slept 9-12 hours per night PLUS a 2-3 hour nap daily is now sleeping only about 8-10 hours a night. Lovely. This wouldn't be so bad if it weren't so greatly affecting his behavior. I've about had it up to here with the attitude. He tells me to stop, he throws things, he hits, he's even taking to spitting. My all time favorite was when he threatened to "rip you in half". Nice, huh? He's claiming he's not sleeping because he has "nofing to suck on". He never asks for binki, but I'm about ready to give it back to him and duct tape it in his mouth. LOL.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

last trip to the Jersey Shore

On Saturday we decided to beat the heat and head to Atlantic City. I think we made the right choice, 'cause while it was 97 scorching degrees at my parent's house, it was significantly more tolerable at the beach!

My mom had $30 in food vouchers at the Taj Majal, so we ate in a little shop there (one that Tyler picked out based on the fact that it had couches that you could eat at). From there it was off to the rides. Tyler actually rode a new ride, the "boat ride", which he found fascinating.

From there it was off to the beach. It was GORGEOUS! Today I planned ahead and brought Tyler's bathing suit, which of course only meant that nothing but his ankles ever touched the water. LOL. Instead he played in the sand.

In fact he buried himself in the sand.

I have to share this picture because it's one of my favorite "sites" in Atlantic City. It's just an old pier, but to me it always reminds me of some sort of ancient Greek ruin. Hey, since I'm likely NOT to travel overseas anytime soon, that will have to hold me over. LOL.

On, and in case anyone is curious, my stinkin' lucky mom won $55. I, on the other hand, lost $5 (of her money). In reality, that's sorta like a win to me considering how unlucky I usually am! So, the trip MADE them some money. Gotta love a Saturday night with a cash bonus!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Coming to an end

First off, in case anyone is curious, we didn't go to the "movie in the park" last night. It was too ridiculously hot, so we convinced Tyler we'd have a "party" at home instead. In reality that means he was allowed to eat in the living room and we watched a movie. He picked "The Land Before Time" which was a great choice since it's barely over an hour long and he insisted on fast-forwarding many parts of it because they were too scary. It worked out far better for bedtime than if we had gone to a full movie that didn't start until dark!

Today was Tyler's last day of camp, which he was NOT happy about. They put on a little "show" for the parents. It was a great way to hear the singing voices of the counselors because I don't think any of the kids in his class sang themselves. They were performing a song (sung to the tune of "The Twelve Days of Christmas") called "Earth Day Birthday" which comes from a book by the same day. I'm anxious to get the book because Tyler seemed to really like it.

Here are some highlights of the "show".

Now that camp is over, I'm reminded that my trip to NJ will soon be coming to an end as well. We'll be leaving on Tuesday and likely won't be back until Christmas. Boohoo.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Finally caught up!

Let's see if I can make a final attempt to catch up. I think I can do, I really can!

As for me, I FINALLY was fever-free by Tuesday so that we could get together at the beach with my cousin Kristen. She has 2 kiddos and Tyler loves to play with her oldest. We also brought our moms along for a nice afternoon picnic and swim.

Oh, and obviously Kristen is pregnant too (this will be her 2nd biological child). She's due 2.5 weeks after me.

On Tuesday night my brother and his fiance, Kristin, came over for dinner. It was nice to see them again, even though I wasn't feeling so well again (being out in the heat really does a number on me).

Yesterday we got a chance to meet up with my mother-in-law at the beach after dinner. We're hoping to be able to see my sister-in-law at some point as well. I guess we shall see.

Today, after camp, it was off to my dad's school for lunch. Tyler FINALLY napped, but only because he knows we're scheduled to see a "movie in the park" tonight which starts after his bedtime. There was no way I was taking the 6:30am-riser to a movie at 9:00pm without a nap, so he's pretty lucky that he was tired enough to sleep. So, wish us luck!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

STILL catching up

So on Friday, after camp, it was too darn hot to do anything else so we went to Chick-Fil-A for lunch and some playtime. Unknown to us, it was "Cow Appreciation Day", so anyone dressed like a cow got a free meal. That quickly explained the 6 college-aged kids in cow costumes. Anyway, they had their mascot roaming about the restaurant, which Tyler was quite pleased about.

Upon leaving the restaurant we encountered the cow walking down the median of the highway, presumably just drawing attention to the restaurant (it has just recently opened so many people don't know it's there). Lo and behold a cop car turns around with it's lights on and presumably tells the cow that he can not walk down the median and then proceeds to park his cop car perpendicularly in the road to stop traffic to help this cow cross the road. Tyler found this all greatly amusing and proceeded to say to my mom "Mom-mom, you ever seen a cow cross the highway before?". Most of us probably have not. LOL. This is a great story that Tyler loves to share with anyone and everyone.

That night we (my parents and I) decided to order cheese steaks when Tyler announced that he'd rather have "China food" (which we corrected him as being "Chinese" food). He ordered won ton soup, white rice, and chopsticks. He's never touched a chopstick before, but apparently he had just seem them on his "Around the World in 80 days" Mickey DVD we borrowed from the library. He had a grand time with his chopsticks, and I must say he didn't do too bad.

I guess I probably did not mention that I guess I'm sick. So, pretty much, my parents raised Tyler while I dealt with some crazy flu-like illness for a few days. My parents took him all sorts of places: my grandparents house, the lake (a few times), back to Chick-Fil-A one night, camp, the pet store, etc. Me, I laid in bed.

The following are some photos from a country fair they took him to. In all honesty, I'm really not displeased that I missed it. Totally NOT my cup of tea. And I find it shocking that any 3-year-old would appreciate a demonstration on how to operate a horse treadmill, civil war reenactment, how to operate a loom, antique baby shoe collection, broom maker, blacksmith, etc. But Tyler loved it and I am happy that this type of stuff does interest him. I just have to secretly cringe when he asks me to look up on the internet how to make yarn. LOL.

Monday, July 14, 2008

another pregnancy update

On Thursday I reached 28 weeks. I believe that brings me into the 3rd trimester. Wahoo!

Not much new to report. I overdid things a bit too much with my trip to New England. I guess I didn't really think too much about all the little bits of lifting I was forced to do. At home he has a step stool and obviously out in public we didn't have any of that so EVERY time he needed to poop or wash his hands or brush his teeth I had to lift him to the toilet or to the sink. I walked a ton more than I'm used to and didn't get us much sleep as I really needed. I did, however, drink my water. At least I did SOMETHING right!

According to my parents scale I'm still down 1-2lbs, but that may not be accurate. I feel like I've gained more.

I swear this little boy is running out of room. It might just be my memory failing me, but I don't feel like I remember this much movement from Tyler at this stage in the pregnancy. I can feel kicks way down in my abdomen at the same time I feel movement at the opposite side of my body up by my ribs. I'm starting to feel limbs now, which is fun. Every once and a while I can see body parts protruding from my stomach.

Tyler has finally started to feel some movement though too, which is really cute. He still loves to talk to my belly and ask how the baby is doing, whether he is asleep, if he likes what I'm eating, etc.

Baby boy Eline is still nameless. At some point maybe myself and Al will be in the same state for a decent amount of time to get the chance to sit down with a baby name book. I feel neglectful as a parent, although my mom did remind me that we hadn't picked a name yet for Tyler at this point (although we had already been discussing it for months, unlike this time around). Right now the only possibilities have been provided by Tyler: Jason (not sure where he got this, but it is growing on us), Diego, Dora (which he now agrees would be a bad choice since Dora is a girl), Tyler (which he now agrees would be confusing), or Yasin (our little neighbor). He's so helpful, isn't he?

fun in the field

On Thursday, after preschool camp, we called my brother Chris and we all went out to lunch (myself, Tyler, my mom, and Chris) and then on a little outing. My brother occasionally works at a local blueberry farm. It's not open to the public at all, instead it's a family owned business and they sell to companies. However, they allowed us to come in and pick since they know my brother well (the owner's son is my brother's good friend).

I had been blueberry picking in Florida recently, and was shocked to see how HUGE the blueberries here were in comparison. I'm not sure if it's due to the variety of bush or the climate or whatever, but they were beautiful and delicious! Despite the fact that they were recently pruned, the bushes were still gigantic and had huge clusters of berries. The nice thing was that many of the huge clusters were down low so Tyler had no trouble picking at all. We got 4 huge containers worth (the size you see around our waists in the pictures) in no time because of how easy they were to pick and how large the berries were. Oh, and we got them for FREE. Nice bonus! It's possible that Tyler consumed a full bucket as well. LOL.
Oh, and unrelated to blueberry picking, Al left for Hawaii on Thursday morning. On Tuesday, while we were in Atlantic City I had received a message that he was going to Hawaii. Not knowing the details at all, I assumed the worst, but in reality he left on Thursday for a short trip. So, I guess he'll be "enjoying" his own version of "fun in the field" as well.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Beach Day!

On Tuesday Tyler had another successful day at camp, this time only briefly mentioning once or twice that he thought grown-ups should be allowed to stay. No tears, no argueing. Just fun.

From there he actually had a nap (phew) and then we went to Atlantic City. My mom had 3 free buffet vouchers (and Tyler is free until he turns 4) so we were able to eat for free. We meandered along the boardwalk for a while, which is always fun to Tyler.

From there we hit a few rides on the boardwalk (I'm sure you'll all bored with pictures of Tyler on rides by now).

Then it was off to spend some time on the beach. I'm convinced that Tyler never goes in the water on days where we have a bathing suit, but if we're there with the intention of not going in the water, of course he wants to go his clothes. Oh well, life goes on with wet shorts or not. Tyler had a ball running from the waves, spinning in circles, and otherwise just enjoying life.

My little camper!

On Monday (gee, I'm still that far behind) Tyler was due to start "preschool camp". I was very nervous, because Tyler had made it clear a few times that he did NOT want to go, and I'm sure you all remember how poorly preschool went at the beginning of this year. On top of that, he was sleep deprived, and hadn't even had a chance to acclimate to being in NJ. I literally woke him up an hour before camp was due to start (after having been placed in his bed, asleep, less than 9 hours prior to that) and let him play for a few minutes and got him ready. I hadn't yet completely decided how I was going to handle things if he cried and/or refused to stay there.

So we (my dad, Tyler, and myself) went to the school, which I excitedly told Tyler that myself, daddy, all of his aunts/uncles, and his grandparents had attended. He seemed un-phased. Rather, he just seemed scared. We brought him in, all the while he's asking why we can't stay there and telling us that he didn't want to go. He did agree to go in and he got involved somewhat in a coloring activity. Meanwhile I realized that paperwork had arrived at my parents (which my dad hadn't noticed) so I sent my dad back to the house to get the paperwork to fill out while I stayed on the sidelines (as were some other parents). He kept looking anxiously in my direction and a few times cried, but he held out. Lo and behold, when my dad arrived with the paperwork, I started to cross the classroom to meet him (so that he would not disturb the class and/or Tyler) and Tyler noticed me walking away, waved goodbye, and yelled "bye Mommy". I took that as my cue and head home!

Now "preschool camp" is only 2 hours long, but it's amazing what you can accomplish in 2 hours when you aren't dealing with lugging kids in/out of car seats, helping someone cut food, or any of the other various things that we, as parents, do on a regular basis. I know you are probably wondering why I never really realized this when Tyler was attending preschool this past year, but I think I was SOOOO sick that I never really appreciated it.

So my dad and I went to pick him up at the end of the day, and he was grinning ear to ear. He proudly announced "I didn't' cry. Not even a little bit." and rattled off this huge list of fun things they had done that day. Success!

From there my dad and I took him over to Walmart to eat lunch at the McDonald's, buy nighttime pull-ups and let him pick out a "big boy backpack" to bring to camp. Stinkin' Walmart did not have a single "themed" or otherwise child-like backpack in stock. He was very disappointed. At least he happily settled for bringing my backpack (the one I bring when I travel on planes while having to lug a car seat and a child), despite the fact that it's huge on him. LOL.

We got a surprise call from my mom (she had been attending a conference in Washington D.C. for the past week) that she was coming home early, so we rushed to ready things for a little birthday party (a day late) in her honor. When we got home Tyler was sooooooo happy to see her. My brother Chris and my grandparents came over and we enjoyed a pizza dinner together before celebrating with cake and ice cream. I'm pretty sure Tyler thought this party was all for him.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Last Day in New England

On Sunday we had a tearful goodbye, as Tyler did not want to leave Zak nor his "very special air mattress" he had been sleeping on at their house. In fact he suggested we take a photo so that he could look at it and remember Zak. Apparently he felt they had become quite close.
From there Marisa, Katie, and I (and the kiddos) head south and stopped for lunch before arriving at Old Sturbridge Village. I really didn't expect Tyler to enjoy it too much, but I figured it was wide open spaces and he could run around before being cooped back up in the car. Well, I was wrong. The child loved it and wanted to visit all the buildings, listen to all the demonstrations, and read ALL the plaques (much to my dismay and my father's amusement). He also got to pick out a treat at the little bakery. He chose his "first ever rock candy". Just what he needed...pure sugar in rock form.

From there it was off to Mark Twain's house in CT where my dad was set to meet up with us. We had called ahead (twice) and they were to be open until 5:30 with the last tour leaving at 4:30. What they didn't tell us, which would have been very useful, was that the tours had been sold out for hours. So, we arrived there and really could only watch the video documentary (which was pretty interesting) and then got to tour the grounds.

My dad met us there around 5:30 and we said our goodbyes to everyone. All in all it was a very tiring, but wonderful, weekend and I'm so glad I got the chance to see my good friends. We had (thankfully) pretty uneventful drive home and Tyler fell asleep sometime before arrival so that we were able to carry him right to bed. Phew.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


So, for those that don't know, Boston was my beloved college town. I actually met my friend Katie (to be discussed) my freshman year in college but we were only in a few classes together (if that). We then met Marisa our sophomore year in college and we were all friends from the start. Anyway, we were all the same major so we spent a LOT of time together and became inseparable. In fact, we decided to live together senior year in an apartment off campus. Now it's been over 8 years since we graduated college and we're still very close, even if it's not in proximity.

Anyway, back to the point. Early Saturday afternoon Marisa and I (and the kids) head off to Boston to meet up with Katie. Katie had been in Boston with her husband for the 4th of July and her hubby was flying home and she was gonna spend a few days with us. Marisa and I haven't seen Katie in over 3 years (she lives in CA)!

We met up and hit the BU bookstore for some official BU gear. Tyler got a little Boston University t-shirt and I got a BU Sigg bottle, which I was excited about. We had a little snack and then did a little site-seeing of the campus. Tyler loved looking at the dorms we had lived in and searching for all the red and gold BU campus signs (for those that don't know, the campus is spread out throughout the city so a random campus building might be right next door to a restaurant).

From there it was off to the Public Gardens. I love the Public Gardens and I was excited for Tyler to see them. He enjoyed watching squirrels and chipmunks and looking at statues. We all went on a swan boat ride, which was very fun.

Katie bought both of the kids a stuffed swan, which Tyler named "swanny orange beak", although he usually calls it "goosey".

We hung out at the Make Way for Ducklings statues for a while. Tyler thought this was great fun.

Then we had our picture taken at the same location we have now numerous times in the past. We have some college photos there, and then a photo from Tyler's first trip to Boston with my friends when he was 7 months old, and now a current one!
From there it was off to eat some yummy lunch at a cute little cafe.
Then we quick ran back to our car just in time to discover our parking fine for an unpaid meter we had forgotten about. LOL. Just like old times!