Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Tweet! Tweet! April 2008

I'm not sure if Twitter is going to keep all my tweets forever and ever. Because they are often little snippets about my daily life with The Girls, I will preserve them on this blog monthly.

Tweet! Tweet! April 2008:

Zak: "You produced two babies and now you think you can do anything." Damn strait, mister! from txt

How is it possible that every time I get in my car on any given day I end up tuning in at the exact same spot on the Howard Stern Show? from txt

Maddie wants to race me, so she says, "It's a mart.... He said....GO!". No matter how many times I tell her it's, ON YOUR MARK, GET SET, GO! from txt

I changed from my suit to jeans after I checked in for my return flight and a pilot commented, "why did you change out of that cute skirt?" from txt

The security guy at the airport looked at my I.D. and said he liked my hair better "longer... like on your drivers license." from txt

Maddie thinks we should put a TV on the deck of our Lake House. Cause apparently the view of the water isn't entertaining enough! from txt

Lake Medina is beautiful. Watching a lightening storm from the deck. Babies are sleeping. Life is good. from txt

I am super techno girl! I updated my Sirius S50 in my car by following the directions INSTEAD of throwing the damn thing out the window. from txt

Maddie calls beef jerky "beef turkey" which at least makes more sense than JERKY. from txt

Got a check today from Chase bank for FOUR CENTS after I closed my checking account thee months ago. Um, thanks? from txt

Maddie is wearing black sunglasses and playing her harmonica on the way to school. "I rocked it!" from txt

Brooke has ANOTHER ear infection. Her THIRD in the last several months. Doctors suggested putting tubes in her ears. from web

When I turned off "Little Einsteins" today you would have assumed I turned off the oxygen supply to her brain. "Nooooo! Please don't do it!" from web

The only thing worse than a five hour drive with two whiny kids is doing it with a hangover...a REALLY ugly pukey hangover. from txt

On the way to Dallas and Maddie won't sleep or stop whining: "Stop the car!" and "I wanna go to Dallas!" from txt

I hate truck stops. GROSS in every way you think about it. from txt

Maddie says she isn't ready to leave the restaurant yet. She says, "Two more hours!" from txt

Maddie to Brooke: "Okay Brookey, it's time to go to sleep. Good night, and please do not poop or pee while your sleeping. I love you, s ...... from txt

Woke up at midnight to a screaming Brooke who had a full disgusting diaper that leaked all over. Parenting is fun! from txt

Crowed at HEB. Been here for well over an hour with a wait three baskets deep! from txt

Flights: martini, margarita,tequilla, desserts. A little bit of everything. A mother-in-law babysitting. Alone with my husband. Heaven. from txt

Going to a birthday party at gymboree! Monkeys! Monkeys! More monkeys! from txt

Maddie (3 years old): "don't ask me 'Why?' you are making me crazy!!!" from txt

Bad new: Brooke has a double ear infection. Good news: She gave me a kiss for the first time. Does that mean I'm gonna get sick too? from txt

At the doctor AGAIN with Brooke. She has a fever. Taking bets...ear infection or mystery virus? from txt

Maddie (3 years old): "When I used to be a squirelI would eat dirt and grass." from txt

Work, workout, shop? What should I do next? from txt

I found two lottery tix my rental car this week. Turns out they were worth two bucks, and I reinvested my windfall into a mega tix. from web

On my way to the Texas Democratic County Conventions. I'm a delegate for OBAMA! from web

I just created a twitter account. I'm so hip. from web

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Hi Mom!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Maddie phrases

Maddie had some common sayings these days, like...

"Don't leave withoutta me!"

"What in the world?"

"I haven't done that a long time ago"

"When I was a old man, I would...." or "When I was a car, I used to...." Or "When I was a grown up, I always..."

The Girl has apparently had multiple past lives and is here on this planet NOW to inform me of what her life was like before she was my daughter.

Greeeat..just great!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Lake House

Surprise! We spent the weekend celebrating our 9th wedding anniversary and family at our new lake house on Medina Lake. We have had our eye on this house for about 6 weeks, and closed on it on Wednesday. We've been discussing the dream of living by the water for years, and finally found the perfect property that meets 99% of our needs. We'll discuss the missing percentage point in a minute....but first, take a look at this VIEW from our back yard!

It's a two bedroom, two bath, with two living areas with a detached garage and carport in Bandera, TX. Bandera is the self proclaimed "Cowboy Capital of the World." It's a little town of about 1000, and we noticed more bikers than cowboys on our quick trip to "town" for some essentials. It takes about ten minutes to get to the nearest sign of (human) life, grocery store and stereotypical cowboy shops. San Antonio is about a 45 minute drive away. Here is the front of the house:

Speaking of essentials. We have none. We slept on air mattress and sat on the patio furniture that came with the house. We did also negotiate the fridge and washer/dryer. We are using our old college dishes and pots and pans, and are in the market for a few beds and couches (hello Craig's List!). It didn't seem to matter much since we spent the majority of the 75 degree weather outside.

When we were telling Maddie about that we were going to buy the Lake House (that she visited when we were looking in the video) she reasoned, "So...if we're going to buy the lake house today, it may be too heavy for us to put in our basket. How will we pay for it if it won't fit in our basket?" I responded, "We'll pay for it with The Girls College Tuition Fund." She didn't seem to mind!

The Girls had lots of fun exploring. Both were bitten my some red ants, Maddie screamed and screamed, and we didn't even notice that Brooke got two bites on her leg until several hours later in the bath! Maddie had a bite on her hand, and then FREAKED OUT when she saw a black ant on her leg. She also freaked when she saw a few lizards, a stick (a snake!), a butterfly, and some birds. It took a while for her to even believe that this deer and bear (pictured below) were just fake plaster statues. She climbed on the "horsey deer" for a ride, then fell off and scraped her knee. She screamed louder when she saw blood. "Bbbllooooooddddd!" More screaming occurred, then whimpering for another hour.

I have a feeling that Brooke will forever be an outside kinda girl because of having this house in her young life. She toddled around in the grass looking closely at everything she could see.
I also think Maddie will adjust to wildlife very quickly. She even whined and pouted when it was time to leave and didn't want to go. I was worried they'd be bored, so we stocked up on the toys and DVD's. Turns out, they just wanted to play outside, which was fine with us! Maddie spent time helping us clean up and collecting the previous owner's yard art obsession.

Speaking of yard art, MY GOD! The previous owners did us the favor of leaving all their crap for our enjoyment. There are four bird houses, six fake frogs, a large deer, a plastic saddle, a bear holding a baby bear, fake flowers, "welcome" signs, a mini train, a Tom Sawyer, six mini deer, an owl, about 10 flower bed hummingbirds, flamingos, bees, butterfly's, stork, wind chimes, and a bird bath. They were only missing the Partridge in the Pear Tree.

So, are you wondering what is the 1% of our requirements that this house didn't meet? WATER ACCESS. Water FRONT was my requirement, but Zak is dying to get into the water. There is a 20 foot vertical drop off on the property, then another 60ish feet of tiered vertical-ness to the water. This is also a huge safety issue for us, but the majority of the property has a barrier of some sort (rocks or large bushes) that would prevent drunken accidental falls. However, one could easily climb over those rocks and fall, which is our major concern. There is no way we can physically get down to the water (believe me, Zak tried), so who knows how much it is gonna cost to build a walkway or stairs. We even thought to just tie a rope and Tarzan Swing it out to the water!

The only "good" part about not have water access right now, is the fact that a boat is out of the question until we have a walkway to the water and a dock. "One step at a time," I kept saying as Zak came up with one idea after another to get his toes in the water.

Another reason we got this place was so we could use it to attract our friends/family to come visit us more often....especially friends with BOATS! So, come and have a beer with us! We're taking reservations now, and an added bonus are the two super girls to play with!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Happy 9th Anniversary to us!

What better way to celebrate nine years of marriage than with a trip to Whataburger!?

And to Baskin Robbins for ice cream!

We also gave each other one of the coolest anniversary gifts that we can't wait to tell you about. I will write about it this weekend....get's exciting! (It's NOT another baby!)

Happy Anniversary, babe. I love you!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Last weekend

Zak's friend, Heath, got married last weekend in Dallas, and we saw this as an opportunity for a mini vacation and to hang out with some friends, have a night off, and let Papa and Susan play with the girls. We are also celebrating our 9th wedding anniversary this week, so wanted to do something different since a vacation without the Girls was out of the question. (Heath is on the right, then Zak, Jeff, Bill (all college friends).

So....we drove four hours to Dallas! Driving with Maddie and Brooke feels like someone poking your ears with sticks, but you can't get away. The first thirty minutes were great, everyone was happy and excited (and they were ready for their naps). When we drove about 2.2 miles, and before we even got on the highway, Maddie looked at Target and said, "Is that Dallas?" That is when I knew it was gonna be a looong ride. Maddie refused to sleep, and Brooke took a short 45 minute nap at the beginning of the trip. That's all folks!

There is a considerable amount of planning that needs to happen when you take two miniature people and a husband for an weekend trip. Zak's idea of planning is making sure he has matching socks and that he remembers his belt and phone charger. MY idea of planning involves all the rest: my own stuff, Maddie and Brooke clothes, diapers, shoes, wipes, snacks, milk, juice, cooler, more snacks, pacifiers, sippy cups, toys, pack n play, sheet for it, pillows, blankets, medicine, vitamins, hair clips, hotel reservations, toothbrushes, baby shampoo, GPS device.....I could keep going!

We finally get to Dallas late Friday afternoon, and all is well with the world. Maddie is thrilled to see "my Papa and my Susan" and Brooke is happy to get to explore a new house and every cabinet in the house. Zak and I were just excited that we were about to escape the babies.

Zak and I left on Saturday morning for the wedding in Rockwall, TX (about forty miles from my dad's house), and our tires nearly squealed as we peeled out of the neighborhood. FREEDOM!

The new Hilton in Rockwall is absolutely BEAUTIFUL. It is on Lake Ray Hubbard, and is just a week old. It's a pretty cool feeling to know that your hotel room hasn't been slept in by anyone else yet (or at least it didn't look like it was pre-used). I scammed us a free lake view upgrade (cause I'm good like that) and we got ready for the wedding (which was also on the lake).

The bride, groom, and wedding were lovely and after we had some dinner (and wine) and danced, the newlyweds sailed off in a boat. That's when things became a bit hazy for me.

I remember being fairly sober as we went back to the hotel bar with our friends. I had just two martinis there, lots of laughs, and much fun with our friends.

However, the fun had disappeared as I woke up with the worst hangover since before I had kids. See, when you're a parent of small children, it's not WORTH IT to drink because you have to wake up at the crack of dawn to care for them. Because of that I never have more than two drinks. I suppose that is why my tolerance was not as I expected it. I was miserable. I will spare you the gory details, but let's just say it involved my body ridding itself of all possible toxins. Over and over again.

Zak and I made it back to my dad's house to pick up the ever so cheery Girls (who interestingly enough speak/cry at a very high volume and pitch) for a previously scheduled play date with the Happy Harris family. Needless to say, I felt so bad for feeling so bad when I rarely get to see my dear friend Amy and her beautiful family. We didn't get there until about 2pm, which means that everyone didn't get an afternoon nap, but the kids had fun playing for a couple of hours while the grown ups made future plans for another visit. We re-celebrated Mason's birthday with another "Happy Birthday to You" song and cake. Maddie loves any excuse for a birthday party. I, of course, didn't take any pictures because I suck. Go visit Amy's blog to see if she has any posted.

At 4:00 p.m. we buckled in for another bad four (turned into five) hour car ride home. Ugh. Maddie whined and cried to get out of the car from Dallas to Waco, where I nearly lost it because I was so annoyed. Brooke whined and cried from Waco to Austin while Maddie quietly watched a movie on her DVD player and continued to remind us "how nice" her behavior was. We stopped in Austin for food and a mental health/vomit break, and after dinner at McDonalds the girls slept for an hour until we got to San Antonio.

We had fun, as long as I try to block out the miserable car ride, on our mini vacation. When I was a kid I remember some long car rides with my brother, Scott. I distinctly recall several trips with my mom and step-dad and we were threatened with spankings on the side of the road, being left on the side of the road, and putting up blocks so we couldn't make eye contact. Because, "MOOOM! He's looking at me!!" may be more annoying than Madison demanding to get out of the car. Scott and I would fight SO much in those car rides, I'm surprised they ever took us anywhere! Today parents have the luxury of headphones and DVD players, but that didn't seem to make the trip any more tolerable for Zak and I.

What ideas do you have to make those long trips easier? And by "long trip" I mean anything longer than an hour is torture for us.

Monday, April 14, 2008

The difference between boys and girls

Before I had babies, I always assumed I would have boys. Or actually, I really wanted boys. I was honestly very sad when I found out I was having a girl with my first pregnancy ultrasound and surprised that Brooke was going to be a girl. Zak, however, knew both babies were going to be girls.

I had what I thought were many good (and selfish) reasons:

  • Boys are "easier" than girls.
  • Teenage Girls are no fun, fight with their mother, and are 'difficult.'
  • Boys adore their mama.
  • Weddings are expensive.
  • Boys tend to be more independent.
  • It's hard being a girl (and more dangerous)
  • I was a bratty, bossy girl and didn't want a mini me.
Well, all of those things may be true, and we've still got over 18 or more years to go. However, just the other day we spent several hours with two boys (ages 4 and 5) who are true boys. And by "true boys" I mean they are loud, hyper, busy, wild, crazy, active, destructive, rough playing, and aren't the best listeners. Interesting, after those descriptors, they are well behaved and have nice manners for kids their age. I honestly can't even tell these two brothers apart because they don't stand still long enough for me to talk to and look at them....they're a blur, always in motion!

Maddie loves those two boys, especially the four year old, and she was a bit overwhelmed by them. She, much like Zak, is orderly, neat, and likes to expect the expected. She is a creature of habit, and can at times be sassy, bratty, active and messy. That is not the norm (okay, the sassy is pretty normal). Normally she is mellow, likes to "rest" and have quiet time, and watch movies, color, play, do crafty things and chill. Hyper she is not...unless she's around boys.

Needless to say, I'm pretty darn happy with my two little girls. So, tell me did you get what you "wanted" in the sex of your child? What surprises have you experienced as they've grown?

Monday, April 07, 2008

The Bob

When I had my little wispy blonde haired baby, I couldn't wait to give her cute pigtails or a pony tail. That dream only lasted a few months, and now Maddie refuses any hair dos other than a super quick comb and clip to keep the bangs out of her eyes.

Since she wasn't going to allow me to do anything with it, I decided to chop it off. NOW...while I still get to make those types of decisions. At least I thought I could.....Maddie refused this haircut for the last several weeks. Although she's had one before, I think she was afraid they were going to hurt.

And also...she gets "haircut" confused with "shortcut" so when I'm driving and I tell her we're gonna take a "shortcut" she will scream, "NOOOOooo! I don't want a shortcut!"

Friday, April 04, 2008

Twitter me this, Twitter me that

What the heck is Twitter? It's more of me writing about stuff, but this time with less blabby-ness. Twitter requires that I get right to the point in a sentence or two. It will be where I can tell you the uber exciting things that the Girls are doing/saying or stuff that I'm doing, or thinking about.

Yeah, I know, you don't really care, but here you go anyway.....welcome to Twitter!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

14 Months

Dear Brooke,

Yesterday you turned 14 months old, and you're the sweetest, funniest little creature on the planet. Your dad and I can do almost any minor silly thing and you will laugh hysterically.

When I look at your rapid growth in the past 14 months, I often get sad because your baby phase is nearly complete, and in my overly emotional times, it makes me cry. Just last weekend I was cleaning out your drawers of baby clothes (which mostly used to be Maddie's), packing them away for another baby that likely won't exist. I told your dad that I was having a hard time, and he didn't know what I meant until he saw my tears. "Oh, honey, they're big girls now and we have a long time to watch them grow." The problem is that a long time ain't so long, and it's shocking how quickly time goes by. Then your dad said, "things have gone downhill since she stopped nursing." And he is right. Once that bond was broken, I knew my baby was growing too fast.

Sometimes, when you let me, I rock you to sleep, cuddling you closely like we used to do in the middle of the night. There are so many things I DON'T miss about the baby phase, but looking back, it doesn't seem so bad. I guess I need to go back and read the blog to recall the not so fun moments.
You're starting to get very verbal. Here are some words you say (in order of when you said them first):

Da Da

Dee-Dee (Maddie)

Mama (still only said when you're really upset)

Tay-Tay (thank you)

You're also pretty good with your baby signs, and know the signs for:

Thank you

That's all
You are walking very well these days, still quite wobbly, but you can stop and turn, pick things up, climb stairs, and walk quickly when you're trying to get away. Sometimes, when we play, "I'm gonna get you!" you just collapse in laughter and don't even try to escape the tickle monster that is hunting you.

Maddie may be your favorite person, although you're very much a Daddy's Girl. You ask for Maddie first thing in the morning, and are now trying to imitate everything she does. She can get you to repeat sounds, follow her directions, and do other monkey tricks on her demand (like clapping, dancing, or throwing things).

What you don't mimic her nice table manners, and you behave like a caged animal begging for food by yelling, screaming, and grunting. Then once you get it, you shovel it into your mouth by the handful, and forcefully throw the food you don't want onto the floor or sweep it off your tray with your entire arm. Those baby signs I mentioned above are only used when you feel that you're not starving to death.
Your teachers at school say you eat more than any other child in your class and you never refuse any food. I'm pretty sure that you take in twice the calories that Maddie does on any given day. In other words, you eat EVERYTHING, and they love you for that. Your teachers say, "Oh, we love little Brooke, she's so easy!" Let's just hope that phrase is never uttered by any boy during your teenage years. After you eat your food, you like to run your dirty hands all over your face and hair. At the end of the day, you look like you need to be hosed off in the back yard.

When you do something you know you're not supposed to do, like chew on shoes, run away from me, go in the cabinets and drawers, or bang on the hanging hallway mirrors, you have this little glint in your eye. You do the forbidden behavior, look up to see if I saw you do it, do it again, look up and smile. When I tell you "NO!" apparently you think this means, "Oh, that was cute, do it again!"

The picture above is you in the office finding things to get into, but I really took the picture because your name was written on your butt, and I found that to be photo funny worthy.

I think you're going to be photographed a lot in your diaper in the next several months. There's not much of a need to put clothes on you in the hot Texas summer, especially when you're a slob-o-bob-o during your meals. Also, we are buying the lake house next week (photos to come later) and we'll get to spend lots of time half naked playing in the water and in the pool. I can't wait to create even more great family memories with you, your sister and your dad. It will be an adventure!



Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Is this mean?

One of my favorite games to play with the Girls involves me hiding, jumping out from the said hiding spot, and screaming "AHHH!" at them. Watching Maddie have the day lights scared out of her is HILARIOUS. I am laughing out loud just typing those first two sentences, as I picture her startled face as it breaks into a huge shaky scream and then laughter.

We rinse, repeat, and then do it again until we're both laughing so hard that I give away my hiding position.

I will admit that I prepare her for hide and seek, and the first scare is the most mild. My intent is not to give her a heart attack, but the anticipation of the scare is what I think she finds so much fun. Sometimes, when she's not in the mood, she'll jump and yell, "You scared me! Stop it!" and I do. Then she'll go pout.

Now that Brooke likes to run off and do her own thing these days, I like to play the same game with her on a much more gentle manner. Since she's the Queen of Short Term Memory and the Princess of Drunken Walking, I am going easy on her. I usually just sneak up on her and say, "Boo!" and she collapses into a fit of giggles. Then, I tackle her, smother her with kisses and tickle her.