Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Even More Totally Bummed!!!

So, I went into the ENT (who happens to look like Conan O'Brien's twin, I swear, except he wasn't funny, which was kind of a bummer) today for some ear problems I've been having (my ear just hasn't been the same since I had a bad ear infection 2 years ago). The doctor told me that I have some scarring issues on my Eustachian tube, and there wasn't much I could do about it. Bummer.

And then, remember my post last year about the lump on my cheek that I was worried was a tumor? My doctor last year said it was because I was grinding my teeth. Remember? Well, the ENT told me today when he looked at it, that that was impossible, and that he thinks it is a benign tumor. Lame! Especially because last year I would've only had to pay $100 for the CT scan I have to get, and now because our insurance changed, I have to pay 30%. Plus, now it's had a year to grow, which just can't be a good thing. I also am really not fond of confined spaces, and I'm thinking a CT scan would be no fun.

Oh, well.

This week is not looking good, my friends: no Christmas, Grace's illness-thing, and now a possible Parotid gland tumor?

This week had better start getting better.

Now! :)

Monday, July 28, 2008

It Came A Little Sooner Than Expected, And Confused

I wasn't expecting this day for another 14 years, but Adam got his mission call today! He is so super excited! He will be going to Bolivia, and reports on Saturday!

(Well, not really. It's actually just for a Primary Activity on Saturday. But, to him, he is a missionary now. He was very disappointed to learn he actually wouldn't be flying on an airplane to a different country, though.) :)

It should be a lot of fun. It's his first Primary Activity day ever because they didn't do them in our last ward, and in Flagstaff, the one that we were there for, got cancelled due to snow or something.

He's very much looking forward to it. I'll post the details after it happens.

New topic (FYI, there's some TMI moments below. You've been warned. :) )

On Friday, Grace was eating some peanuts, and started to choke on them. She was fine after a second, but kept coughing and was wheezing. I was pretty worried about her, and remembered that whenever I choke on anything, it always brings on an asthma attack. So, I began thinking maybe she has asthma, and the choking just brought it on all of a sudden? The doctor was closed (of course) and Mike was at work, and I wasn't sure what to do. She calmed down after about 15 minutes, though, and I figured it was just a random thing. Then, Friday night and Saturday night, she continued breathing weird. Really fast and it seemed like she was making an effort. I called the doctor, the nurse said it was up to me, and then called the urgent care, where I was told it was a 4 hour wait. Minimum. I really, really didn't want to make her wait for 4 hours, so I asked Mike to give her a blessing, and she started breathing normally and went to sleep.

She woke up Sunday morning really struggling, so I brought her to the urgent care that afternoon. The doctor said she has "Reactive Airway Disease (RAD)", probably a reaction to choking on the peanuts. Basically, her airways inflamed and filled with mucus, a reaction to "protect" her body when she began choking. He gave her a few breathing treatments, and when her oxygen got above 90, sent us home (when we went in, it was in the 80s). He told us she needed to work out the mucus that her lungs had developed, and then she'd be breathing normally again (she was still breathing really fast). He gave us a prescription to help her cough.

I went home to see which pharmacies our insurance covered that were still open (it was late), and did some research on the medication while I was at it, and learned that he had prescribed her a cough suppressant. Which completely confused me, because she needs to cough to work out the mucus, right? Suppressing it is not going to do too much good. Does that make sense? I was confused, and she was exhausted (see pic below... that was her 10 minutes after we got home). So, I decided to wait and go to the doctor in the morning.

Mike woke up at 5 this morning, and found her in the hallway gasping for breath (so glad he happened to wake up) and with a 103 degree fever. I sat her up and hit her on the back a bit (to loosen the phlegm), and she started coughing and throwing up. I gave her some ibuprofen, and then she was... fine. Still breathing a little fast. But no wheezing. She's continued to cough throughout the day, but has been completely back to normal. For her, anyways. Which means messes and craziness and a happy personality (and making that completely weird face in the pic below). This afternoon her breathing slowed completely, and she's been 100% fine. So strange.

So... not sure what to do. Does she have asthma? Does she have RAD (after doing some research on that, it seems not, so I'm even more confused)? What was with the fever?

I know I need to bring her to the doctor to get some answers, but my thing with doctors is that as soon as we walk into a doctor's office, 99.9% of the time, my kids are miraculously cured. It must be something in the air. Or maybe it's just the chance to play with strange and dirty toys. I don't know. If she has no symptoms, what's the doctor going to do? I also don't want to wait for her to get symptoms again, and get to the point that if she does have asthma, and has an attack, then she can't breathe at all.

Not that anyone who reads this blog is a doctor (or maybe you are), but any suggestions?

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Totally Bummed

So, this is going to be a total rant, and is going to sound really immature, and I apologize. Just a little bothered right now, and wanted to complain a bit.

Mike was told yesterday that since he had Thanksgiving and Christmas off last year, that he can't have either off this year. And I'm totally bummed about it.

I understand (I really do). It needs to be fair to everyone.

But that doesn't mean I have to like it. :)

So, I know this is kinda dumb. That lots of people have to work holidays and it's not the end of the world. It should be fair to everyone. But I was seriously looking forward to Christmas, since it will the next time we would be able to see our families. And Christmas is just so much fun with everyone. And now it's not going to happen like that. :(

Oh, well.

Okay, done complaining now. Really. :)

Friday, July 25, 2008

Grace, Grace, Grace

Last night, Adam went with Mike to Scouts, because I begged him to, and because I needed to fold a ton of laundry, and it just wasn't happening with them both around for some reason. And I thought Adam would have fun.

While I was folding laundry, Grace was playing next to me with the socks. I went to put some clothes away, and came back and she was gone. I called for her, and looked around, and she had seriously disappeared. I started freaking out and searched everywhere, and after 5 minutes, still couldn't find her. Our apartment isn't all that big, and I was just about to panic about her figuring out how to open the front door, when I heard a little voice start giggling and yelled, "Boo!" I turned around, and here she was:

What a little stink! Now I need to find some sort of lock for the laundry room, because I'm pretty sure that's not a safe hiding space. BUT, so, so, so thankful she was okay and that I found her.

And then, this afternoon, the three of us were sitting at the table coloring pages for a book we are making. After 10 minutes of coloring, Grace got up and left. After a minute, I asked Adam to go and check on her. He found her and started yelling. She had put her stool onto the counter, climbed onto the toilet, onto the bathroom counter, onto her stool, opened the medicine cabinet, and had somehow unscrewed the 'child safe' (whatever!) lock on the kids' mulitvitamins, and was eating them like candy. I freaked out, swept her mouth, gave her some milk (b/c calcium blocks the absorption of iron), and called Poison Control. Luckily, I have the number memorized because I've called so much because I'm prepared like that. The woman there was so kind, and figured out that Grace would have had to swallow 31 before having any symptoms of iron poisoning, and over 60 to be 'poisoned'. There was no way she had swallowed anywhere near that amount, so I felt much, much better.

This girl! She gets into so much trouble when I'm actually paying attention... I can't take my eyes off of her for a second before she's into trouble! Two scary incidents in less than 24 hours is a little too much for me. Hopefully tomorrow will go more smoothly. With Grace, though, you never know. :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Summer Reading

We love, love reading. When we first moved here last year,we decided we needed to find some cheap fun ASAP, and made our way to the library. We go twice a week (once for storytime and once as a family) and fill up 2 bags full (the librarians always tease us). What can I say? We all love reading.

In April (after things got settled from the move), I decided to begin reading chapter books with Adam while Grace took her naps. We still read picture books together, too, but I thought it would be good for him. I had visions of introducing all the great classics to him that I loved when I was younger, and made a list. And then after the first week I realized that Robert Louis Stevenson might be a bit above his level right now, so I changed that list. :)

We've had a lot of fun this summer reading. It's been fun finding all the books I loved as a child and introducing them to him.

Here's Adam's list so far:

* James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl (had to edit some of the more colorful words... goodness!)
* The Witches by Roald Dahl (he LOVED this one)
* The BFG by Roald Dahl (very fun)
* The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner (he thought this was boring)
* The Hardy Boys #1 The Tower Treasure by Franklin W. Dixon (currently reading... I thought it might be too advanced, but he insisted on something more exciting after Boxcar)
* The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary (on waiting list at the library)

We should be through when he starts school in 34 days. Crazy.

And my summer reading list (just in case you were wondering... even though you probably weren't... I've finished all but the last two) :

* The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
* Angels & Demons by Dan Brown
* Deception Point by Dan Brown
* These is My Words by Nancy Turner
* Hearts of the Children series by Dean Hughes
* The Host by Stephenie Meyer (waiting list)
* Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer (9 days to go)

I would list Mike's, but his reading consists of books about leadership and being a better person and non-fiction LDS. That kind of boring nonsense. :)

I've been finding more and more things that I love about summer (strange), and reading is one of them. When it's too hot outside, staying in with a good book in the cool A/C can't be beat.

Anyone have any recommendations for good books?

Friday, July 18, 2008

More Things I Want to Make...

I'm conducting 'research' for my calling (really), and have found some more super-cute things that I want to make. Someday.

No, I don't live near a beach (I wish!). But this would make going to the pool easy.

No, Grace does not have enough hair (again, I wish!). But I have some super-cute nieces I can force them on give them to.

Candy Cane Outlet Plugs

No, I wouldn't put them up now. And I probably won't end up making them because Grace would spend all her time trying to pry them OUT. I think they are a cute idea, though. No instructions for this one, but it's pretty self-explanatory: take some of the child-safe outlet plugs, and glue a painted candy cane/pine on it.

Isn't crafting fun?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Guess What Happened Here

Here's Grace:

The front of her head is wet (obviously). Wonder what happened? I'll give everyone three options of what could have happened here. See if you can guess:

a) Adam dumped water on her head.
b) She dumped water onto her own head.
c) While I was brushing my teeth, she walked in the bathroom, said, "Hi, Mom!" and then dunked her head in the toilet.


And the answer is... c! She actually dunked her head into our toilet. And wanted to do it again, but I threw her into the bathtub to scrub the life out of her hair. I clean the toilet daily, but still... how many germs are in that water?


She keeps me on my toes, that's for sure.

And how seriously nasty is it that I took a picture of it? (I was waiting for our water to be not scalding before I put her in the tub, and took it quick. Just too funny.)

Monday, July 14, 2008

5-Year Well-Check and Flash Card Fun!

First, a classic Grace glare:

Moving on... :) Adam's 5-year well-check was today, and he's doing GREAT! The doctor said that he looks awesome. I was a little concerned about his weight, because he's a big kid. However, he's in the 90th percentile for both weight and height, and the doctor said that was fine. As long as the numbers match up, he's healthy. He had to get one last vaccine before school, and he got it, no problem. Didn't even cry. He told me that it hurts more when Grace pulls his hair, and that he was surprised! He even begged us tonight to let us have another one (but I think that has more to do with the small toy he got as a reward, rather than the vaccine itself... I hope). He is so excited for school. He asks me daily how long it is until he starts (which isn't until August 26th), so we are going o make a paper chain to count down to school. Fun!

Different topic now. :)

I love flashcards. I've been using them with Adam since he was a baby to learn vocabulary, and then advanced on to phonics, addition, subtraction, etc. I love them and Adam loves them, but they can be a pain. Grace finds them and scatters and eats them. The boxes get ripped. It's hard to keep them in the right bags. Etc. Today, I was so psyched to see on Marie's blog a great idea for them. It's so simple, that I don't know why I didn't think of it. You just punch holes in the top of the cards, pop some book rings on, and use them as flip-cards! I picked up some flash cards tonight at the dollar store, along with the rings. They literally took 5 minutes to make (check out the instructions on her site... they are pretty self-explanatory, though). I am going to store a few in my purse, and I can pull them out to keep the kids occupied while we're in doctor's offices, waiting in line at the store, in the car, etc. Love it!

Well, we've had a busy, busy Monday... doctor's office, Mike doing car diagnostics, cleaning out the cars, going grocery shopping, FHE, etc. I'm wiped! Hope everyone had a great day!

[OH! BTW, on a recommendation from Mike's deacons, we rented Vantage Point and watched it tonight (after the kids were in bed). Very good.]

Sunday, July 13, 2008

I Love This Girl!

Grace, Grace, Grace. She's fun. She's mischievous. She's a princess and knows it. She has an attitude like I've never seen at times, and then will turn around and just love on you. She doesn't talk a ton, but she understands so much that it's scary.

She likes bugs. She walked up to me with a dead fly last week, as proud as can be. She just gets the hugest kick out of seeing the occasional cockroach or cricket crawl into our house. I am so scared of roaches. I can handle most bugs, but not roaches... not sure why. Anyway, a few weeks ago I found one in my bedroom, and began screaming like nothing else. Grace watched the whole thing, very intently. My mom sent us a package last week, that had some fake bugs in it, including a very realistic-looking roach. Grace immediately took it, hid it, and then came and got me, yelling, "Bug!" I thought it was weird, because she loves bugs, but went and had a look anyway. I freaked out when I saw it, and she began cracking up. She hides it constantly now, just to scare me.

She's got an attitude. We had tostadas for dinner tonight, and I was going to cut hers into wedges, to make it easier for her to eat. When she saw what I was going to do she yanked her plate and glared at me. She has such an 'evil eye'... she will make a great mom someday. Tonight after I put her to bed, Mike and I watched the news. She came out a few minutes later, hands on hips, and glared at us. I mean, she just glared. I said, "Hi, Grace! What's up?" She said, "Mom. Dad. Shhhh!" Then walked back to bed. Mike and I totally began cracking up.

She gets very jealous. It doesn't matter if I'm hugging Mike, cuddling with Adam, or holding another baby at church. She will have nothing of that. She pushes until she gets on my lap, and then smiles triumphantly like only she can.

She is so girly. Loves makeup and clothes and jewelery and painting her toenails. But she won't let me touch her hair. Every day I ask her if I can put a pretty in her hair. And everyday she replies, "No!"

She loves attention. Which I guess is what the jealousy thing is about. But, if you accidentally bump her, she lays on the ground, moaning, "Ow! Ow!" until you say you're sorry. She's very much a drama queen, too. She has been able to produce HUGE tears since she was born, and she has no problem sobbing until she gets her way.

She is the definition of mischief. She deliberately climbs on counters, tables, etc. just to grab a box of whatever is around to dump it. And then she comes and gets me, so I can see what she's done. She loves sneaking out of her bed at night, and crawling up onto Adam's bed just so she can kick the wall. Because she knows that's so not allowed.

She is so loving. Watching her care for her baby dolls and love on other babies at church (as long as I don't hold them) is amazing to me. She loves trucks and getting dirty and bugs, but she is innately nurturing. She loves sharing, and will always make sure everyone else has a 'treat' before she has one herself.

She surprises me every day. Every day I am just amazed at how smart she is and how funny her sense of humor is, how sweet and kind she is. I love both of my kids so much, and there's no favoritism, believe me. But, I think that Heavenly Father knew just what little spirit I needed to get me through the hard times we've had these past 2 years. She may drive me crazy sometimes, but I couldn't do it without her.

I love this girl!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Long, LONG Week and Happiness!

This week has just been so, so long. Most of it having to do with Mike's job. The week begins on a Saturday at his work. So, because he had last Saturday off, he had to work Monday through Saturday this week. Six days in a row means he's tired, I'm tired, and the kids miss their dad! PLUS, he just got 'salaried' without the raise (which I'm not even going to go into), so now he gets to work even longer hours. With no overtime.

Sigh... everyone told us that the first few years of having a 'real' job were no fun. I just have to keep telling myself that at least we have one year down. AND I'm so thankful that we live closer to his job, because if we didn't, now we'd REALLY never see him. :)

And, I had fun plans this week to go to the park with some friends and a baby shower, but my car has running on the 'hot' side, which is to be expected with this seriously hot weather, but I can't really have it overheating, either. So, I've been stuck at home until Mike can take a look at it.

And did I mention it's seriously hot so we've been avoiding the outdoors?

Long, long week.

Anyway, last night I had just had it. Mike had to work 2 hours late, and Adam was cranky, and Grace is getting a cold, and while I was making dinner she dumped out a HUGE bottle of bubble solution on the carpet (I don't even know how she found it), and to top it off, in Arizona they're getting monsoons and we are not! Which really is not something I would normally cry about, but last night when Mike came in, I was. Crying about not having a monsoon. Which is really dumb, I know. But, it had been a long week, alright?

And then, a few hours later...

We had a storm! Wind and lightning and thunder and RAIN! My monsoon came! I was so excited that I woke up Adam and Grace to come play in it with me. At midnight. Well, Grace woke up and played, but Adam wanted to sleep. Whatever. But, it was so, so, SO much fun. [Note: if you can't tell, these are my middle-of-the-night rain pictures... notice the puddle behind Grace.]

Today I am feeling much better because I got my rain. And Mike has the day off tomorrow. And it's cloudy outside, which just makes me giddy. And there are some nice puddles perfect for stomping in after Grace's nap. Happiness!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Fourth of July Re-Cap

Our Fourth was very... relaxing. I think that it was something that we all just needed. A day to not have to do anything, you know?

We began the day by sleeping in way, WAY too late. Which is kind of funny, because we didn't stay up all that late the night before. I think all of our bodies were just playing 'catch up.' So, after we (finally) woke up, Mike made some pancakes for lunch breakfast with blueberries and strawberry syrup (the whole red/white/blue thing), which were super yummy. We showered and dressed, played some games, made a video for my Mom's birthday, and I whipped up some ice cream for dessert that night.

We packed our picnic, and went outside to light some firecrackers as the sun began setting. Just some small sparklers, smoke bombs, and popping things. Here, it's legal to do certain fireworks on the 4th of July only. However, in a nearby city, they sell the full-blown-out-up-in-the-air-with-a-boom fireworks. Completely illegal. And I could never, ever do those. Because, that's just me being a freak about keeping rules. But, I was SHOCKED at how many other people don't feel that way about rules. I mean, they were coming from backyards, everywhere.

We wanted to go to Henderson, but it was just so hot. And we didn't want to deal with any crazy people. So, we ate our picnic lunch and went up to the temple. It's right up on the mountain, and next to a church. We parked in the church lot, and we had a view of the whole valley, which was super cool. We watched all of the illegal fireworks for a while, and then at 9:00, 8 casinos lit off simultaneous ones.

So, the baseball fireworks we saw the night before, were the highlight of the fireworks shows for us. The casino ones were kinda lame. But, we had lots of fun. And then we came home, played some more games, and went to bed. And then I checked all the blogs the next day, and became super, super jealous that in Phoenix there was lightening and wind and I SO, SO miss monsoon weather.

All in all, it was a great day, and it was so nice to kick back, and not have to do anything. We all need days like that sometimes, I think.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Just Have to Say...

I love, love, LOVE our ward. I come home every Sunday so happy and recharged for the week.

Saturday, July 5, 2008


Geochaching is probably yet another thing that everyone has already heard about, but I just found out about. Anyway, it sounds awesome. I love treasure hunts. And I really, really, really wish that I could have been an archaeologist. Not that this is really archaeology, but, the whole searching thing, you know? Yeah, I guess that doesn't make too much sense.

Anyway, if you haven't heard about it, go here. Geocaching is basically an adventure game using GPS. All over the world (I'm amazed at how many there are just 5 miles from our house... literally hundreds), people have hidden 'caches.' It could be a prize that you can take (but must replace) or a log book to write in. They are in everyday spots. You use your GPS to find the location, and use the hints and clues to find the cache. Maybe I'm just a nerd, but doesn't it sound fun? Anyway, look at the site to find out more.

We don't have a GPS, BUT we have a friend who does, and we're going to borrow his soon, and then go treasure huntin'! I'm totally psyched. We had really wanted to do it today (because Mike has the day off work), but it didn't work out with the GPS. BUT, we are definitely going to go soon, and we can't wait!

Go ahead. Make fun of us now. :)

(Oh, forgot to add this. I heard about letterboxing a few years ago-it's big in Flagstaff-but it's the same kind of thing, but done with a compass, and you just stamp the log books you find. Also very cool.)

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Fourth!

Happy Fourth of July! LOVE the Fourth of July! It's one of the highlights of my summer. The fourth of July has always been extra fun, because it's my cute mom's birthday. Happy Birthday, Mom! When I was younger, my brothers and I used to make her a cake every year (that normally coincided with her morning sickness, and made her, well, sick). But, it's always been fun celebrating her birthday along with the Independence Day celebrations.

I'm missing Flagstaff a lot today, because two of my favorite Fourth of July memories are from when we lived there. If you really want to enjoy fireworks, then you HAVE to be up in northern Arizona. Totally worth the drive. They (used to, anyways) have a huge display at the golf club, and it was totally free, and we brought our chairs and sat on the grass. It was so nice and cool, and we were so close, that it seemed that the fireworks (which were HUGE), were just going to fall down on us. When the fireworks show was cancelled in Flagstaff, we travelled down to Cottonwood, where it was just as fun. Mike and I always promised ourselves that after he got a 'real' job after graduation, that we would still travel to northern Arizona every year for fireworks. But, that was when we thought we'd be living in Phoenix. And the 4-hour drive with crazy gas prices is not happening. This year, at least.

Sigh... I love Flagstaff.

Anyways, our plans today are swimming, packing a picnic, and then heading over to Henderson (city by us) for their activities and fireworks. We are also making homemade ice cream. Yum! Last night, we drove down to the baseball game at about 9:00, and got really good parking outside the field. We waited about an hour, and then watched the HUGE fireworks display after the game. We were really, really close and it was SO loud! Grace freaked out, and then calmed down after I held her. She ended up LOVING them. And I totally forgot my camera, so no pics, sorry. But, some tomorrow. Promise!

I am so thankful to live in this incredible country. Sometimes I get a bit cynical with politics and politicians and various things that happen that drive me crazy. But, listening to the National Anthem last night made me realize how thankful I am for this country, and the freedoms we have. Even if I disagree with some things, I need to be better about appreciating what we have.

Happy Fourth!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

My Date With a Cute Guy

And, no it wasn't my semi-annual date with Mike. :) It was with... Adam!

These past few months have been... difficult with Adam. He has been throwing some MAJOR tantrums and picking on Grace a lot and just being difficult, in general. I changed his diet (cut back on the sugar and artificial stuff), and that's helped. I've made sure he has gotten more sleep, and that's helped, too.

But, I figured out that the main thing he needed was attention. I just don't give him as much as I give Grace. Not that I love her more or anything. But, if you've been reading this blog at all, you probably can understand why I follow her around, try to distract her, and play with her a lot: because she's a catastrophe waiting to happen. The second she's out of my sight, she's in trouble. Adam doesn't need me all of the time anymore, so (I think) he's been acting out to get more time.

A few weeks ago I made him a deal: if he could go 2 weeks with no tantrums, and was better at obeying and nicer to Grace, I would take him to see Wall-E. He has never been to a 'movie theatre' before, and has been dying to see Wall-E ever since he saw the previews.

So, he did it. And we went last night, after FHE. And now we're not going to be able to afford to eat next week. Just kidding... but, seriously. How expensive ARE movies? Wow!

He was SO excited all day, and after a quick dinner and lesson, we headed off to the movies! [Side note: totally annoyed that every movie theatre here (besides the scary dollar theatre) is in a casino. Not fond of bringing Adam through those.]

Anyways, aside from him thinking it was a bit loud (he got used to it after a while), we had a BLAST! He loved the seats, that the theatre was so dark, and how the 'screen was bigger than a house!' I really enjoyed the movie, and thought it was well-made. However, it is a little... abstract? Is that the word? I don't know. It's about the future, and the earth being ruined, and it was a little hard for Adam to grasp. About halfway through, he turned to me and said, "Mom, I really like this movie. Wall-E is super funny. But I have no idea what's going on." It's just one of those movies where the pieces fall into place as you watch, and it was hard for him to understand. So, I gave him a brief synopsis, and he seemed to get it then. After the movie, we came home and relayed it to Mike and Grace, before playing some games together. Sigh... love our family!

I think that this is something that we are going to try and do on a monthly basis. Not the movies, necessarily, because... expensive much? But, the date with mom or dad thing. How sad is it that Mike and I are going to 'date' our son more than each other? :) It was so nice getting to spend time with just Adam, though, and talk and joke and laugh, without having to worry about Grace or doing laundry or cooking. So fun. I just love my little sunshine. And I hope that this little bit of extra attention just for him will help him today when I'm trying to keep Grace from dumping out an entire box of cereal (like she did yesterday). :)