Saturday, December 25, 2010

Crying Uncle!

Wow, it has been a rough few days, let me tell you. It all started with the sound of the boys' bedroom door slamming open at 8:30 am on Thursday morning. Why is this such a bad thing? Well...first, the boys were still suppose to be in their cribs, but decided to learn how to climb out of them at THE EXACT SAME TIME! All the sudden, our sleep-time routine took on a whole new aspect; namely, how to keep the boys in their cribs long enough to fall asleep. I ended up sitting in their room for about half an hour at nap time, because they just thought climbing out of their cribs was the best thing ever. It wouldn't have been a big deal, if they had been able to climb back IN once they were ready to fall asleep.

Two hours after the boys woke us up, Nathan's sister Kate, her husband Eliot, and their 6 month old son James arrived for our Christmas get together with Nathan's side of the family. We had a nice couple of hours to get ready and relax before Nathan's mom and her parents got here, which was about the time I finally got the boys down for their nap. James was also asleep, so we all just sat around the living room and chit chatted for quite a while until all the boys woke up, which was nice.

Opening presents took quite a while, just because the there were so many of us, and we had to pause half way through for the boys to have dinner. Nathan's dad showed up about that time, so we finished opening the kids' presents, then Nathan's mom and her parents headed home, and we tried putting the boys down for the night...again...and again...and again...and again, until Mommy burst into tears, and Daddy and Uncle Eliot came to the rescue. They disassembled the cribs while my hero Kate shivered on the front step holding me while I cried. Gotta love that breaking point.

We decided to just let the boys sleep on their crib mattresses on the floor until we get real mattresses sometime next week, so they could run around until they simply pass out on the floor. At that point, we were finally able to eat 9 pm. I definitely drank a couple glasses of wine. After that, we finished opening gifts with Nathan's dad, and then played the Uno Attack that he gave Kate & Eliot, which was a blast, ha ha ha. I don't think Nathan's dad left until about 12:30, while Kate & Eliot stayed for the night.

Nathan was an angel and let me sleep in on Christmas Eve. Evidently right before I got up, Levi threw up on the living room floor. We attributed it to the stress and over-excitement of all the guests, gift opening, and sleeping arrangement changes. The boys went down for their nap, Kate & Eliot headed home around noon, Nathan laid down for a nap, and I spent some time cleaning the living room and kitchen up again before my parents were scheduled to arrive at 3:00. About the time I was able to finally sit down and take a deep breath, Nathan woke up, so we switched spots. I was laying in bed for about an hour when I heard one of the boys crying then Nathan hollering for me because Levi had thrown up all over his mattress, the floor, and himself.

Nathan jumped into the shower with the boy while I threw Asher onto our bed, turned on Backyardigans on Netflix, cleaned up the boys' room, and ran to Albertson's for pedialite and kid's Pepto. Unfortunately, the pepto immediately make Levi throw up again (that stuff is nasty nasty nasty), and he only kept the pedialite down for about 30 minutes. After canceling our dinner plans with my parents, Asher and I got ready to go to our church's Christmas Eve service because he was acting perfectly healthy. He did fine until literally the last song of the service, when he was in my mom's arms and threw up all over the jacket of the lady in front of us. I was horrified! I rushed him to the bathroom while my mom cleaned the jacket and my dad cleaned the floor. I personally kept it together until I got him home and back into the care of Daddy, at which point I broke down again.

Evidently, one of the families in our small group had been sick for a couple of days before our group's Christmas party, then several of the other kids were throwing up yesterday with no fevers, just like Levi. Because of the no fever part, we thought maybe he had eaten some bad food or something, and had no idea that it was something contagious until I got to church and talked with some people from small group. Needless to say, I was less than impressed with the fact that we knew nothing about people being sick when we got together with everyone for the party, so we didn't even have the option of staying home to avoid getting it. Now we're spending Christmas alone, without my parents for the first time in my entire life, instead of getting together with them and my grandparents like we had planned. Grrr.

Thankfully, the boys have yet to throw up again since yesterday evening. Asher seems to have completely bounced back, while Levi seems to have gotten the brunt of it and spent all morning curled up on the couch watching The Santa Movie and Backyardigans with me. That is the ONE up side to the boys being sick...they're actually willing to snuggle with me for longer than 30 seconds! Also, Nathan and I seem to have escaped the worst of it and have only had some lower intestinal problems...TMI? Sorry, ha ha ha.

We had a very relaxed morning, opening our presents then just laying around the house while first Nathan, then I, then the boys took naps. Now the boys are still asleep, Nathan's playing video games, and I'm doing this. The rest of the day will be following suit, before I go back to work tomorrow. Then only 5 more work days of day shift before I go to graveyard on January 2nd, working four 10-hour shifts with Thursday-Saturday off!!! YAY, THREE DAY WEEKENDS...DURING THE ACTUAL WEEKEND!!!!

Speaking of which, can you believe 2010 is almost over? Every year seems to move more and more quickly, it's just not right! But I am ready for 2011 to be here...last year was a pretty difficult one, with lots of ups and downs. I'm officially done with my probationary period at work on February 1st, which means a lot more job security and the possibility of buying a home without being as afraid of losing my job. So 2011 promises to be a very exciting year!

Hope your Christmases were a lot less...stressful than ours turned out to be and that you have a wonderful New Year!

Friday, December 10, 2010

It's Beginning to Look a 'Little' Like Christmas

Inside our house at least...outside, it kind of looks like a reprise of Noah's flood. No, seriously, things are flooding. Our Lower City Park is now the Lower City Lake.

But hey, does that really matter when you have a bunch of fun Christmas projects to work on between all the Christmas presents you're making? On the present front, I thankfully only have three more that involve sewing...once those are done, I can go to town making little things for stocking stuffers and whatnot.

Anyway, the other day I spent ALL day making Christmas decorations. Here's some photos.

Our stockings the hallway...since we don't have a fire place or mantle.

A very small portion of our nativity, with a twine tree that took me HOURS to wrap.

My very first live garland, wrapped with fake wooden cranberries...LOVE!

Decor in the bank of windows in our living room...our Willow Tree family, Nathan's Charlie Brown Christmas book, a couple other things, and the vase with ornaments (more about that later).

The Advent Tree my mom got for the boys, to go with with the calendar below.

The Advent Calendar my mom made for the boys. Each pocket holds a mini ornament to put on the mini tree.

Bank of windows in our dining room.

A mini twine tree, with a star from Joann's and a fake cranberry wreath from Goodwill.

The stars from our Nativity Scene. I actually love these so much that they stay there year-round.

Dollar tree decor: hurricane vase hot glued to a short candle stick holder, and filled with two tubes of ornaments. Gotta love it!

Christmas-i-fied cupcake tower...I laid down small branches from the garland and then a bunch of glass ornaments from our stash of ornaments.

The grown-up version of the paper show flake. I've made 3 of these small ones and one big one while laying in bed sick. Still not sure where I'm putting them.

Felt rose wreath...grape vine wreath from Joann's, white roses made of rolled felt. Also VERY time consuming but I L.O.V.E it.

Ornament vases including ornaments: $6. Felt Rose Wreath: $4.40. Twine Trees: $7.90. Live garland: $6. Total: $24.30. You would pay that much for one of these things if you were to buy the finished product in the store. I'm very happy with how everything turned out, and how clean and simple our decorations are this year. No clutter, no cheesey stuff. Only thing missing is the tree...which we have agreed not to put up until the 22nd so Nathan doesn't have to fight to keep the boys from tearing it apart. I'm so excited to get it put up though!

In other news, I ran my very first 5k on December 5th! It was the Jingle Bell Run in Portland, and I accompanied a couple from our small group, Chris & Niki. We had an absolute blast! I ran with Niki for the first mile or so, until I was ready to set my own pace, and then took off on my own. I managed to run the entire thing, no breaks, in only 31:24.9...which beat my personal record by over 2 minutes! That's just barely over a 10 minute mile. Not bad, if I may say so myself!

Chris, myself, and Niki in our church parking lot...we forgot to take pictures before and after the race while in Portland, so we faked it!

My very first race number...I'm very proud!

I think I'll be signing up for two more races this spring: the Shamrock 8k in March (duh) and the Bridge to Brews 10k in April. (8k = 4.98 miles, 10k = 6.2 miles). The Bridge to Brews starts and ends at Widmer Brewery, with an after party complete with beer tasting at the finish line. Right up our alley, no? Chris and Niki are planning on running the Shamrock with me, and I may be able to convince them to do Bridge to Brews also.

I was going to sign up for the Oregon Wine Country Half Marathon (13 miles) that goes between Stoller Vineyard outside of Lafayette, through Lafayette, and all the way up to Carlton, where they have a wine and music party at the finish line. (In case you didn't know, Lafayette and Carlton are only a few miles outside of Mac). There's just one problem...registration costs $95!!!! For EARLY registration! Not exactly in our price range, but how cool would it be to say that I've done a half marathon? So I'm still debating...I have until September to decide. Anyone feel like donating to the cause? Ha ha ha!

As for the boys...they're two. Definitely two. Undoubtably two. They still have their moments that make you melt, but oh man...they've been a trial lately. It doesn't help that I've been sick for the past three days and poor Nathan has been a single parent. Due to their determination to get into anything and everything, Nathan rearranged our living room a bit and put the couch under the large window...which has become their new favorite perch.

Asher left, Levi right.

Ok, I think that's all for now. I'm going to go lay on the couch, wrapped up in a blanket, until the boys wake up from their nap. Blast these stupid colds!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Family Pictures!

I'm so so so excited!

A gal from our church was kind enough to do family photos for us at a moment's notice, and she did a GREAT job of keeping two toddlers entertained long enough to get some fun photos before losing the light. So here ya go!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


We've had so much fun in the past week, it should almost be illegal!

The Beav's game was an absolute blast...and it didn't hurt that we won. In fact, we kept Cal from crossing the 50 yard line for the entire first half of the game and kept them from scoring until literally the last minute. The rain also held off except for about 10 minutes during half time. My parents parked their camper and utility trailer in a lot next to the rugby field, which is about 3 blocks from the football field. The trailer (complete with wall-to-wall carpet, coleman lantern, coleman heater, camp chairs, and twinkle lights) made a great place to tailgate both before and after the game, and then turned into Nathan and my hotel room for the night. Unfortunately, we forgot to take pictures of the set up, but we made some great new friends. It was definitely a night for the record books.

Nathan and my parents before the game, missing the beer...that rain gear is so sexy!

Me with Benny Beaver!

Nathan and his Dad.

Nathan and I.

We got back into town in enough time to take the boys to the Trick or Treat insanity on our main street here in Mac. It was...really crazy. They blocked off all of 3rd Street and the business owners gave handed out candy. Unfortunately, the entire thing turned into one really slow moving conga line up and down the street, with only 1 in 4 businesses giving out candy. So you would shuffle for about 5 minutes and then get a piece of candy, lather, rinse, repeat. Needless to say, with two toddlers, the level of entertainment wasn't quite high enough. We lasted about 20 minutes. Thankfully, we had a ton of fun trick or treating in the neighborhood later on in the evening with some of our neighbors, and the boys were ADORABLE in their monkey costumes.

They were a little confused about the idea of walking up to a stranger's door and asking for candy, but quickly caught on...after the 3rd house, Levi was running up to the door and holding up his bag. And let me tell you, they were NOT happy to get taken out of their costumes. They loved those fact, they've taken up permanent residence in our living room.

I headed back to work for three days, and then today we decided to take advantage of one of the last rainless days (seriously, it's been 70 degrees here for the past three days...isn't it November?!) to take the boys to the beach. They haven't been there since last summer, when they didn't really understand what was going on. Today, despite a ton of fog, there was no wind and it was fairly warm out. We took some beach toys and the boys had a great time digging in the sand, filling buckets, dumping out the buckets, refilling the buckets, etc. Afterwards, we went to the Pelican Brewery and had one of the least stressful toddler-accompanied dinners we've had in a long time. A lot of it had to do with our waitress being AMAZING and putting in the boys' food order right away, so they had a constant flow of food to keep them occupied. It was a very enjoyable afternoon and evening with my beautiful family. Here's some pics (Asher's in the blue jacket, Levi in black).

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wait...'s Fall.

It's been over a month since I've blogged.

I apologize. Thing is, I tried being on Weight Watchers staff and just got too busy. If I wanted to spend any time sewing, something I absolutely love doing, something had to give. So spending time on the computer was it. The good news is that I decided to stop doing Weight Watchers was a lot bigger of a time commitment than I thought it was going to be, always in the evening between dinner and bedtime, meaning I was missing out on a lot of time with the boys. I felt guilty about that, and about leaving Nathan to do the single parent thing for even more time.

Now everyone can stop dropping thinly-veiled hints about posting on the blog, ha ha ha!

So, let's see if I can recap the past month.
  • The boys turned 2 years old on September 21st. TWO! We have two 2 year olds. Please be praying for us. We had a fun little birthday on their birthday with my parents, then a big party the next Saturday with the whole family and several friends. It was a ton of fun.
  • I got asked to make a purse for a fundraiser auction for the local children's shelter here in Mac. Ended up finding and falling in love with the fabric and pattern designer Amy Butler. It was a very time-consuming project, but also very satisfying to make something for such a great cause!
  • Locked my keys in the car outside the Dutch Bros only 3 blocks from work...on my way to work...on the morning of the first frost of the season...while wearing stiletto heels. I had to wait outside for 30 minutes until the tow company showed up. Thank goodness for wool jackets, understanding coworkers, and AAA.
  • Went to the Jimmy Buffett concert at the Rose Garden with my parents. What a blast!!! We ate at the Alexis (Greek restaurant in downtown Portland that my parents have been going to since they opened 30 years ago) before the concert, then went to the Horsebrass Pub afterwards...didn't get home until almost 2 am. Thank goodness we found an amazing college student babysitter, who is use to staying up that late on a school night!
  • The boys have learned how to say uh oh, bye bye, night night, and many other things. They're also learning how to take directions. I can usually ask them to bring me something, and they'll go grab it and bring it to me. It's a very cool thing to watch your kids grow and learn.
  • We've found the boys' Achilles heel...the OPB cartoon called Caillou. Nothing special about it, but it hypnotizes them. The other afternoon, Asher was throwing a full blown tantrum. Screaming, crying, kicking of feet, the works. Nothing I did made it better. I even took him upstairs with me, thinking he just wanted to get away from his brother for a bit. No dice. Turned on Caillou, and he immediately laid down on the end of the bed. And he stayed that way, not a peep out of him, for a good half an hour. I was even able to doze on the bed with him. Thank you Canada for writing such a soothing show.
  • I turned 27. Yeesh. I'm only 3 years away from being 30. You know, as old as my husband is now. And that's OLD! Ha ha ha, love you honey! We had a small party at my parents house, just them, us, and our friend Andy who was bach'ing it while his wife and daughter were in Arizona.
  • While Dad was at chukar camp (before you ask, chukar is a game bird), Mom offered to watch the boys while Nathan and I had a date night. We decided to head into Portland to the Melting Pot, an amazing fondue restaurant. Spendy, but amazing. It was the most romantic outing we've had in a long while. Afterwards, we curled up in bed with wine and a movie. It was a lovely night, and I FINALLY got to wear my sexy black 'victory' dress. The only picture we got was with my iPhone in the dimly-lit didn't turn out very good, so I'm not going to share it with you. Sorry!
  • We think that Asher is going to be left handed. We were flipping back and forth between a baseball game and a football game on tv. Asher was constantly imitating whichever sport was on. During football, he was throwing our stuffed football with his left hand and then falling down like he had been tackled. During baseball, he was swinging this rattle thing...left handed. We've never shown him how to swing a baseball bat. Awesome! His mommy, grandpa, and great grandpa are all left handed, so it runs in the family.
  • This coming Saturday, Nathan's mom is watching the boys while we head to the Oregon State homecoming game with Nathan's dad and my parents. We're getting to spend the night down in Corvallis, so bring on the tailgating!!! Because of the game, I'm taking Saturday and Sunday I'm getting a four day weekend. YES!
  • The boys are going to be monkeys for Halloween. McMinnville does a great trick or treat thing on 3rd Street (our main street) where all the business along the street start giving out candy starting at 2:30. Sure beats knocking on peoples' doors these days.
Ok, I think those are the highlights. I'll finish up with a couple of photos and I'll try not be to be as remiss in posting from now on.

The boys climbing the wall at the best park in one is ever there! (Levi top, Asher bottom)

The boys love going down the BIG slides! (Asher) They're pretty fearless.

Two years old! (Asher left, Levi right)

My sewing center with my new organization shelves (gift from mom and dad)!

Asher sitting on Levi's lap because they were afraid of the vacuum.

Levi tried taking his shirt off and it got stuck. Goofy guy.

The purse I made for the children's shelter auction.

Another bag I made for myself from the Amy Butler pattern book I got for my birthday. Much more complex than it looks!

All that being said...

Have a wonderful Fall! Welcome the rain, the frost, the fog, the beautiful leaves. It's a magical time of year.