Sunday, December 29, 2013

A covered Christmas

Mia turned 3 on Monday, December 16. Aunt Ray Ray and Uncle Russell bravely took her to see Frozen in the theaters which was only her second movie ever, but of course my little couch potato did great. Since I had to work on her actual birthday and we had already had her party, we ate chili and cake after the movie and that was that. On the 19th I took Mia for her 3 year well check and Livi for her 1 year vaccines since she was too sick to get them before. Both girls were healthy as ponies at the check up, but a precise 48 hours later the beastly bugs from the doctor's office incubated into a ferocious like-the-flu but not flu virus. I figured the virus would just run its course, so I busted out the humidifier, Advil, and coffee and settled in for a long winter's illness. Mia would run in circles every morning and collapse every afternoon. Three days later she was still running a fever but it was Christmas Eve and we aaaaalways go to Mass together on Christmas Eve. So like insensitive boneheads we crammed ourselves into the pew with all the regulars and Chr'Easters, and then went on to find other inhabitable bodies for Mia's bugs at PawPaw and Tutu's Christmas party. About 10 minutes into the party Mia starting completely falling apart. She was burning hot so I zipped home to get the ibuprofen, and while I was gone she puked on their couch. Exit stage left. But I did get this super adorable picture of Livi Lou.

The next day? Same song, identical dance. Except this time I was double teamed by sickies as Olivia came down with the plague.
Sick 1 and Sick 2
I had juuust gotten Livi off of her antibiotics for the ear infection and was trying to wean her by New Years, but I can't wean a sick baby! Mia was still scorching on Thursday, day 5, so I took her back to the doctor. Her flu test was negative so it was probably "just a virus," though pneumonia did get thrown around as a potential diagnosis. Olivia is on day 4 and is unsurprisingly still running 102 fevers, so Dr. Long will get to see my lovely mug first thing Monday if Livi's fever stays up. I feel like I'm never gonna wean her, but somehow the monitor read high today for the first time in 2 years.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Party Tardy

With the holidays and the girls' birthdays all happening within a month, I had the questionable idea to have a joint birthday party on Olivia's birthday and then a smaller something special for Mia's birthday.

Olivia got a cold for her birthday complete with low-grade fever, but we gave her Advil, warned our friends, and carried on as planned.
On her birthday. Can you see the sick eyes?
She gagged a little at dinner which I blew off on being a baby with drainage, but when it was cupcake time, the gag turned into an actual upchuck. A typical Templeton, she ralphed and rallied, so after getting cleaned up and changed, Livi happily watched Mia open all their presents.

The rest of the weekend looked a lot like this
since the cold went into an ear infection and her fever spiked to just shy of 104. Nothing a gallon of amoxicillin can't cure. 

Now for the syrupy photo narrative of all things Olivia.
^We loved you, but you were not the cutest newborn.

^Mia liked you too.

^By 6 weeks the cute was coming out.

^And at three months, we had firmly established your title as Cutest Baby on the Planet.

^At six months your silly little personality started to peek out.

^And at 9 months your title was officially changed to Smiliest Baby on the Planet.

^Now at one year old, people can't stop talking about your eyelashes, your dimples, and your smile.

In fact, just today a lady called us into her office at a funeral home (for Judge Baker; rest in peace) to show you to her mother. She couldn't get over how petite you were, especially to see you walking so steadily and speedily, grinning all the time of course.

Olivia, you are a precious blessing, and I thank God every day for the gift of your life.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Olivia turned 1! And we did some other stuff too.

Hi there! Its good to see you after all this time! Glad you still remembered how to find me. We've been a bit busy lately, so I've had less time than usual to contemplate my naval and write about it. Darn. So... please sit back and fall asleep while I talk about what's been keeping me so occupied.

A. Rachel's wedding
Oh my gosh, y'all... she was such a beautiful bride! Did I even need to say that? She's gorgeous anyways. Everything went amazingly smoothly, and even Mia and Weston did their flower girl and ring bearer jobs without so much as a sip of whine. 

the honorary flower girl-
she didn't get to actually go down the aisle
The prep and logistics were kinda tricky with two littles and ALL of our family being out of the running for child care. We wore out several babysitters in the days leading up to and the two days of festivities, but they all lived to hand over the baby goats and sit another day.

2. The new job. In case we're not friends IRL and you unfortunately staggered into my virtual world, I tutor unsuspecting students in math and physics. I love it, and it has been an unexpectedly easy transition for the most part. But... I've been spending a lot of time relearning trig functions and the laws of motion, and oh Lord I'm a nerd cuz I love every geeky minute of calculator punching and number crunching.

D. Feeding the frenzy of Fertility Freakout 2013

Even Pampers thinks I'm ready for another
I've already lamented here that I always want to be pregnant, but each time each girl has approached her first birthday, the intensity of that desire shoots stratospheric. Not to mention that everyone else I know is pregnant (and in my world, everyone means 2 or more), so I have a serious and chronic case of womb envy. Forget that I'm living the NFP dream of having kids naturally well-spaced and giving my body fully to the nursing baby for at least a year, my gut reaction of "I want, I want, I want" trumps most logic most days. So in addition to my feverish prayers for deliverance from my psychosis, I busted out the lated monitor to chart my non-cycles per dear ole Marquette. *Low, low, low. YOURE NOT FERTILE JUST DEAL WITH IT ALREADY*

D2. Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving was good. Caleb had to work- which is my #1 gripe with his hospital job- but the girls and I rallied for a daddyless day with the family. We spent the morning at Gran Marty and Temp's for the Boulevard Bolt and brunch

and spent the afternoon at Hannah's for more eating and playing.
Full bellies + family = happy day

And finally-- birthday! Hmmm, my superb mothering skills suggest that at the very least I give Olivia her own first birthday blog post, so stay tuned! Later gator taters!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Updates for Anna

My husband startlingly suggested that we limit our screen-staring time when the kids are around, and I happily hopped on that hayride. I'm loving the freedom from snapping frivolous photogs and blogging the boring, so this may be the beginning of the end of this endeavor- cuz if I can't write about meaningless minutia, then why even bother. But in the meantime...

Last Friday was Caleb's birthday. His 31st birthday! ;) *Grin goes the woman still in her 20's*
We celebrated with dinner at Outback since Caleb likes his meat with a side of meat. Most of the meal was sub par, but his steak was perfecto and the sangria was celestial, so we went home happy. Since I kinda snubbed the birthday boy on gifts, here's a tribute to the man of last month.

Four things I love about Caleb (4 because 31 is too many and 3+1=4?)
1) He's clever and hilarious
2) He can open a pop top with whatever item is closest by- his ring, a lighter, a pen, his teeth (j/k)...
3) He's a grill masta'
4) He likes camo and hates sleeves
4) He'll beat the brown out of anyone who messes with his women

Mia was sick for most of the week. You couldn't really tell until the afternoons when she would spike a fever and fall apart. Most of the time she ran around like her normal crazy self and sat waaay to close to Olivia. I'm still waiting on baby girl to catch the plague.

We carved pumpkins on Wednesday night, and Mia whined to go inside the entire time. Ok, false. She was cool at first when I let her paint the pumpkin...

Livi painted with her belly. Nuthin' but class here.

And then ditched Caleb when he started carving. She wanted to watch Rapunzel instead.
Remember JT's Message Board Business? Well, chickity check this out.
My talented hubby and his dad made this! I ripped off the idea from my SIL's in-laws, looked for some overpriced inspiration on Etsy, and submitted the plans to JT n' Son's. An hour and a can of spray paint later, I have the perfect piece of entry way decor. Its filling up fast, but I'm especially excited to put all my Christmas cards on it.

In other news... part time job, work weekend, Fall party, Craigslist sales, Livi's walking, finally got a tooth. The End.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Seven Kinda Quick Recaps

Lately I've been blogging with the consistency of day-old oatmeal. Be it complete coincidence or subconscious control, Friday tends to be my blogging catch up day, so true to follower form I'm linking up with Jen once again.

1. Yard Sale
Eh... we made less than I was hoping for but enough to feel like it was worth the effort. We're selling some of the leftovers on Craigslist, so we still have a few extra dollars rolling in.

^^Rachel and Roscoe were our best and unarguably best-dressed customers. #fannypacks.
^^I was so grateful for Caleb's willing presence- scaring off thieves with his bad-A camo pants and whatnot. And Livi's black Vandy onesie was an interesting sociological experiment- all the men called her a boy, but all the women noticed the pink flowery shoes and correctly identified her as a HER.

2. Rachie's bachelorette!
Love my siturs
Yard sale Saturday night was Rachel's bachelorette bonanza! Though I haughtily claimed to be too grannamushka for that type of thing, I blew the bulk of our recently acquired cash bundle and had a blast. *Chug-chug-chew-sip-shoot-chug*

3. Alabama birthday weekend

Aside from a few dare-to-dream details, the trip could not have gone better. We had a great time.
Friday night we had a ginormous group of seventeen at Boo at the Zoo.
Betty looks a little scared, but I think his tractor's sexy
(photo cred goes to Anna)
Sweet little Rose
(also courtesy of ASP)
Not so sure about this face painting thing
My sweet punkin
(thanks Anna)
Saturday morning we went to the Homestead Hollow Arts and Craft fair. Regretfully, I walked away empty handed, but Mia had the time of her life for this month riding in a wagon and, of course, taking a pony ride.
It was wonderful to spend so much time with good friends and family.
such a great daddy
4. Ohhh-livia
Well, this little slowski has yet to cut a tooth. The crankiness last week was a total false alarm. She has, however, taken on the role of stair master which prompted the purchase of two new baby gates. She's also balancing very steadily, and as of Wednesday she decided to speak. Livi now says dada, mama, baba, wawa, and all the other blah blah blah words. I think she's gonna be that kid who waits until she's good and got it before she does anything.

5. A day in the life of this pet owner
7 AM- Step in cat shat while putting breakfast on the table. Clean up crap. Disinfect foot.
7:15- Harley barfs on kitchen floor. Throw paper towels on top to deal with later.
7:45- Notice Harley barf in our bedroom. Close door. Ignore barf.
8:00- Nurse the baby. Warn Mia not to step in kitchen barf.
8:05- Mia runs through the kitchen and slips on the barf. Wails, gnashes teeth. I stop nursing the baby to help Mia.
8:07-Finally clean up kitchen puke.
8:10-8:39- Continue to ignore bedroom barf.
8:40- Finally clean up bedroom barf. Leave paper towels on top.
8:45- Go get dressed. Set Livi on our bedroom floor. Livi eats puke towels.

6. I was wogging this morning *Oh my gosh, is she talking about running again?!* when Layla called and saved me from myself. With very little convincing, I 180'ed it around, transferred the girls from stroller to car seats, and hightailed it to the park. After an hour of constant Mia monitoring, the six of us tripped it to Costco, picked up some essentials and some impulsives, and then had a delicious and nutritious lunch. It was a fun little unexpected adventure.

7. Caleb is sick and sleeping, so I'm watching the series finale of What Not To Wear. Its amazing and kind of very emotional. I only wish I had a large glass of wine to go with it.

Friday, October 4, 2013

7 QT's- Mia's say the darndest things

Linking up with Jen, cuz you know how we do.

1. Oh good Lord, I ran walked this morning- I'm not even gonna give myself credit for a run since I took about 10 cumulative jogging steps and maaaybe covered a mile- and I feel lucky that I'm not lying dead on the side of the road. I was enthusiastic about a little morning exercise, but by the time I reached the end of our driveway someone had covertly replaced my legs with tree trunks. I plodded to the bottom of Mt. Kill-a-one-mama, and the instant I slowed down Mia began ordering me to "Come on Mom! Run!" Ignoring the firstborn, I slothed it up the hill, but once at the top I embraced gravity and started jogging down. My ambition dealt the kill shot when an invisible hand decided to stab me in the chest. On a freaking downhill jog! Can you even call it a jog if you're just repeatedly catching a fall? Sooo, cramp and all, we cut the whole thing short and just went home. But at least my outfit matched, so... success?

2. On Tuesday we went to Mass, but it was actually just a Communion service and we were late to begin with, so we walked in at the "Our Father." Yikes. I debated not even going, but ultimately I figured Jesus would rather see us execute poorly than not try at all... right? But anyways, on our way back from Communion, Mia stopped at the statue of Our Lady, kissed her toes, and started
L O U D L Y praying "HAIL MAWY FULL OF GWACE...!" I smiled but still scooped her up and took her out with the promise that she could visit the Mary statue outside after Mass. When I told Caleb about it, his suggestion was that I should have let her finish her prayer then and there. But I didn't want to disturb the peace. Thoughts? What would you have done?

3. We're going to a trick-or-treating event at the Birmingham Zoo over Poppee's birthday weekend next weekend, so I bought Mia her Halloween costume on Wednesday. My big fat mommy fail was that I took her with me to pick it out. We had already decided on Mia as Cinderella and Livi as the pumpkin (I already have a pumpkin outfit), but in the heat of the moment Mia decided she wanted to be Rapunzel, casting Olivia as Pascal. (I could just buy this, but you know I'll try to find a green shirt and leggings instead.) The real dealy-o is that now the kid won't take the costume off and its already falling apart since los Temps only buy quality threads.
The bow in front is jacked and the Rapunzel charm fell off, but fear not, Mia has the fix! "Maybe we can use some 'duck' tape to tape dis back on da dress!" Uh, lemme see your neck Mia. It looks a little red. Oh! And the other day she watched a squirrel run away and busted with a "He gone" a la the Duck Commanders.

4. Mia's thoughts on our Halloween zoo-venture? "Let's go see the winos!" Hmm, ok honey. I thought you might want to see the rhinos, but I'm sure we can find a few winos too.

5. In addition to Duck Dynasty and Rapunzel, Mia is also obsessed with "words we don't say." All day long she asks, "Do we say dammit? Oh no? Can we say 'soot'? Dang it? Doo doo?"

6. I think this stair climbing booty shaker is FINALLY getting a tooth! Go, Livi, Go!
7. Yard sale tomorrow! Here's to hoping we sell it all!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Olivia's birth story: my 6 hour quicky labor

Since Mia was two weeks early, I was anticipating that our second little bundle might also arrive early. Caleb's grandmother's birthday was November 16, so I thought it would be really cool if that was new baby's birthday too, forget the fact that my due date wasn't until November 29. But November 16 came and went with nary a real contraction, and the entire next week, the week of Thanksgiving, was also uneventful in babyland. At my 39 week appointment on November 26 I was only 3 cm and having no signs of imminent labor. My OB stripped my membranes, which was, per my text messages to Caleb, "uncomfortable but quick", and we set my induction for the following Monday. After being induced with Mia, I desperately wanted to go into labor on my own this time, but since I'm seriously impatient, four days past due was about as far as I could push it. Anyways, after I left my appointment, I took Mia straight to the zoo to enjoy the precious few minutes/hours/days I had left with her alone, and I was also hoping that the walking might induce my labor. Nope.

Over the next couple days I lost a lot of my mucus plug, but other than that nothing felt different. I still hadn't felt the baby drop, and I wasn't crazy nesting. On Wednesday, I drove out to Franklin to meet Hannah to do a little Christmas craft for the grandparents, and on the way I started to have some uncomfortable contractions. Just as I was getting excited and about to call and cancel our outing, the contractions went away. *Frown* But at least something different was happening, and I figured if they hurt then they were probably doing SOMEthing. So not a total downer. I didn't have any more uncomfortable contractions for the next 24 hours, but then on Thursday night they started to hurt again. I was just beginning to prep Caleb that "this might be it" and then, of course, they went away. *Another sad face* With the two false alarms, I had resigned myself to the fact that I was going to be induced on Monday.

Friday was our good friend (and Mia's godfather) Patrick's 30th birthday, and Kristi had painstakingly planned a surprise party for him with me as a contributing accomplice. Kristi kept checking in with me throughout the day to make sure I wasn't going into labor, and I kept telling her I felt totally fine. At 5:00 Friday evening I drove to her house to pick up the birthday cake and other party paraphernalia, and then went home to hang out until the party at 8:00. As I walked out her front door I asked, "Did you ever have contractions that made you feel like you had to pee?" The contractions didn't hurt, but they were REALLY strong. I don't remember what she said, but neither of us were concerned that I might not be able to fulfill my party duties.

I got home and took a shower and jokingly commented to Caleb that "this could be the last shower before the baby." I got ready for the party while he cooked dinner, and by the time we sat down to eat at 6:00 I suggested that we start timing the contractions. They were getting more uncomfortable and more frequent, but since they were irregular (like 3-3-10-5-10) I thought it was another false alarm. By 6:30 I was rushing to the potty frequently and was in a lot more pain. I called some friends for surprise party back-up just in case I couldn't make it. Since we were going out anyway, Caleb's dad was already planning to babysit, but when he saw me he made it clear he was not prepared to stay the night.

I finally called the on-call doc at 7:00, and when I told her this was my second baby she said "Don't wait too long to come in". I must have said something like, "but I have my friend's cake for her husband's surprise birthday party!" because to this day I am still known to this doctor as "the girl with the cake". I gritted and groaned my way through the bedtime routine with Mia, and as soon as she was down I begged Caleb to take me to the hospital. After a very pleasant (and greatly desired to be repeated) medicated birth with Mia, my biggest fear was not getting to the hospital in time to get an epidural. We don't live far from the hospital, but I was white-knuckling it the whole way. And we had to make a stop at the restaurant to drop of the goodies. Thank God the restaurant was on the way.

I was admitted at 8:30 and got really angry when the triage nurse wouldn't order me an epidural then and there. I was 5 cm when I got to the hospital, and an hour later I still hadn't progressed. At 9:30, my savior by the name of Anesthesia walked in. I made the desperate mistake of letting a CRNA student do my epidural and she couldn't get it, but her instructor bailed us both out and I was blessedly numb in T-5 seconds. The next hour went something like "POP-8-meconium-NICU-10" and I guess somewhere in there the on-call doc called my OB, because about 11 PM and 10cm Dr. B walked in.

Since I was complete I started practice pushing, but they didn't want me to actually deliver until NICU was there because of the meconium. That was fine because I was doing a really terrible job of pushing effectively, but then I got in one good push and Olivia basically fell out- without NICU. Oops. The doctor later commented that "Olivia practically delivered herself." But all was fine, and I actually cried this time because I was so excited for Mia to have a sister.

Olivia Leigh, 11/30/12, 6 lbs. 9 oz, 19.5"
So Olivia, you're 10 months old today and still don't have a single hint of tooth popping through. You just started balancing on your own, and even take a tentative falling step or two. You're trying to talk and making some really funny sounds now. I love watching you and your sister interact and am so excited to see what great friends y'all become!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

In which I fuss about fall, fashion, and finances

Transitional seasons are the worst, or maybe its just the transitions OF seasons that I hate. The weather is pleasant this time of year, but the inconsistent temperatures never cease to confound this human of habit. Early fall mornings in Nashville start in the upper 50's but creep up to the 80's before you know why you're sweating. When I went for my run Friday morning I had Olivia decked out in a sweatshirt and hat, but a short 2 1/2 hours later the girls were shirtless playing in the water table. Retail stores and consignment sales are pushing cold weather clothes, but here in the deep South it will be November before we can comfortably wear most of that fluff. The girls are busting out of their warm weather garb, but we still need the function of short sleeves. 
This outfit nails the need.
Great... I only need 6 more just like it.
Nutshell version: I don't know how to dress my kids this time of year! Hell, I don't know how to dress myself this time of year!

The Friday before last, Nonnie took the girls shopping, and though I'm grateful, it only served to inflame my fashion freak out. I'll spare you the transcript of the internal torment that played through my head for a few days following, but the end result was this: "LET'S HAVE A YARD SALE AND SELL OUR EXCESSIVE AMOUNTS OF CRAP!!!!"

So... I have spent the last 7 days going through e.v.e.r.y  room, closet, cabinet, shelf, box, bag, and bin and gathered an impressive pile of junk that's currently cluttering the living room.
Our sale is this Saturday, so I have five days to get this jazz priced and organized. My awesome sister-in-law who has slightly more than my zero yard sale experience has been giving me tips and is gonna be there for the sale too. I'm saying some prayers that we rake in the jingle jangle, because our bank account is getting pretty skinny and we've had a few things break: the light fixture in the playroom, the baby gate by the stairs, Caleb's car... But even if the sale is a bust, I have another fool-proof plan to pad our pockets. Stay tuned for details of JT's Message Board Business.

Friday, September 20, 2013

7 Quick Takes with Snails

I have two sleeping children right now! (Revision: I had two sleeping children for about 20 blissful minutes.) Since our last quest, Olivia has insisted on being rocked to comatose before being laid down and then requires that I perform full-strength CPR compressions on her mattress until she's good and non-responsive. Glad all that work buys me a 30 minute nap and a still grumpy baby. Time for sleep re-training.
I just finished reading Jim Gaffigan's book Dad is Fat. I laughed, I related, I liked. Some parts were unremarkable, but it was an easy read and I laughed out loud a lot. Thank you Sid for introducing me to Jim Gaffigan instead of helping me with my finance homework during grad school.
Mia made a "snail habitat" yesterday.

The kid loves slimy creatures; snails, worms, fish... She wanted to buy a tank for the snails and keep them in the house, but I told her they had to go back to their mommy and daddy so she was magnanimous and let them crawl away.
Every time, EVERY TIME, I leave Livi in the playroom for more than 10 seconds this is what I find,
Reason #137 why I despise having pets. And she's figured out how to climb up the stairs. I've tried to block it off, but she has the uncanny ability to ninja around any barrier I put up.

I succumbed to the 'Gram (@jenntemp18) because I really needed another piece of social media to entice me into taking more unnecessary pictures of my kids.

I love Old Navy's Rockstar jeans. I have a black pair and just bought a dark wash pair. And they're on sale for $19 right now!
On Jen's theme song question: In my bio, I claim "Livin' on a Prayer". (Please enjoy the '80's hair.) I'm not sure if I actually think the song fits or if it just makes me crack up, but I am surely living on a prayer, so, yeah. For you curious minds, I'm an ENFJ.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!