The future is brighter

May 29th, 2008

What a difference a day makes. Yesterday I was so overwhelmed and stressed by some work projects that are all colliding at once. I did not even want to post, because it was just too much to think about.

Today, I feel a little more relaxed about it all. And the weather gods have been smiling on me at last. Today is beautiful and yes, I’m at work, but since I didn’t do lunch, I’ll be out at 3, plenty of time to enjoy the day. And since little E is staying up past 8 most nights, we really have a lot of time. Perhaps we’ll walk to one of our neighborhood parks. OR we could go the pool if it is really warm. Although it would be nice to wait on Daddy to return from his business trip for our first pool trip of the season. Oh, and I have a haircut tonight! Thank goodness. It’s all kinds of scraggly and split endy. If only I had time to get lowlights I’d be really happy. I’ve grown to accept my red hair, and I like red hair when I see it on other people. But I think since the sun has been shining so brightly I feel a little like Bozo at the beach.

Yes, so my late baby is now even going past the 8 p.m. barrier. But man, is she sweet. Lately, she’s happy laying in our bed looking at the ceiling fan while I play with her feet or she plays with my nose. I’m starting to wonder if we’ll need to help her transition to one nap eventually. My neighbor was helping her sons transition, and I thought I’ll just leave Ella be. I like that she takes two naps. We have two nice breaks in the day and she gets re-energized. However, it might just be nice, if I didn’t always have to plan my day around TWO naps. Gets tricky. But not bad. I think she still needs them, so I’m going to keep on giving her those two naps unless she starts keeping me up until 11 p.m. at night …

What a fast week … I missed Tuesday because of the illness and tonight will be fast, and tomorrow night is the premiere of SEX AND THE CITY! I’ll be there. My SIL and I have had it on our calendars for months. I’m ready for a night out. I LOVE going to the movies and it’s been too long this time. We also have plans to go to a restaurant/bar AFTER the movie. For eating or drinks? I’m not sure which. Maybe they’re not aware I eat my dinner at 5 p.m. at night. Perhaps I’ll be taking Ella’s morning nap with her on Saturday.

A really long post with lots of drama

May 28th, 2008

Wow, what a weekend. My friend Chey and her little boy Liam arrived early Friday evening. It was so good to see them. Liam is so sweet and takes after his mom a lot with his huge eyes and great, thick brown hair and eyelashes. We all visited and ate some turkey sausage, potatoes and green beans I had thrown together.

Once the kids went to bed we got busy thinking about the party on Sunday though. It was our annual Memorial Day barbecue and I enlisted Chey’s expertise – she’s a former sous chef, and she had an awesome menu planned: Fajitas with chicken in a Peruvian marinade, steak with an ancho-BBQ sauce, calabasitas (a Mexican side dish with squash, zucchini and corn), gaucamole, tomatilla salsa, margaritas, desert sunrises … yum. So we made our grocery list and planned out our next day of grocery shopping. You know what they say when you make plans …. well, I don’t know exactly what they say, but it’s something about how they’ll get ruined.

The Shopping Trip

So we had a lovely day Saturday hanging out and once lunch was served we got ready for our outing. I was nervous about it though. Ella’s getting to an age where she just wants to run around and play, so it’s getting harder and harder to do stuff where she’s confined. And now there will be two toddlers to keep happy in a grocery cart. We didn’t have much choice though. My husband was breaking his back trying to finish up a landscaping job that unfortunately couldn’t get started until late in the week. And in order to not have a huge dirt patch in our yard at the party he would need to work non-stop on it. And Cheyenne’s husband was out on the road, driving for a living. Oh well, it’ll be fine, we thought.

Our first stop was Sam’s. It was so cute when we got out of the car and Ella wanted Cheyenne to carry her. So Chey walked in carrying both the toddlers. We thought they were off to a fun start. We put them in a cart and began on our way. It was actually a different sort of cart where the kids were sitting facing each other and kinda down low. Probably meant for kids too big for the front of a cart, but we thought maybe ours were big enough. Soon we realized though that their belts were a little too loose and they kept leaning the wrong way. Chey went to get a different cart while I kept them happy with Teddy Grahams. Soon though, the teddy grahams ran out and I had forgotten my other snacks in the car. We quickly realized though it was free sample day, and they were giving food samples everywhere. Liam and Ella got to try some marinated chicken, some bagel chips, part of a fudgescicle, all while Chey and I picked out chips, tortilla shells, chicken and meat – enough to feed about 30 people. Not your everyday shopping trip, but we were still pretty quick. By frozen foods though, all hell was starting to break loose. Ella and Liam were next to each other in their cart now and it seems one always needed something or they were messing with each and they were starting to really want out. We gave them turns getting out and by the time we got to the drink aisle Cheyenne was chasing the kids while I was pushing our huge cart and dragging a cooler behind me. As fast as we could we found some beer for the party and headed to the chekout. By that time the cart was so heavy Cheyenne was helping me steer it by pushing it with her foot while she wrangled around the two screaming kids. I couldn’t help but just laugh. In fact I was laughing so hard I thought I was going to pee my pants. We wandered how people cope with taking two children to the store by themselves, or 3, or 4 … Geez. What was wrong with us?

After that store, we still needed to hit another for a few more items. We so did not want to do that. If we didn’t though, we would have to wait until the kids’ bedtime – 8 p.m., possibly as late as 9, to go back to the store. We knew we’d be exhausted by then, so we just agreed we’d put the kids in different carts and we were going to go as fast as we could. And we did. The kids were no happier there though. They had already decided they wanted to play, not be at a grocery store. I kept Ella amused some of the time, but some of the time, I was holding a very LOUD toddler while pushing the cart. Whew. Not easy shopping. If you would have told me then that I would be canceling the party I was working so hard for, you could have knocked me over with a feather.

A bad night

By nightime, we were right, we were exhausted, but there was still so much to do. And a lot of it, chopping, mixing the marinade were things Chey was going to be be so much faster at than me, so by 10 p.m. I headed up to bed and she insisted she’d take care of it. Just as I headed up though I heard a cry from Ella. It didn’t sound too alarming though, kinda like one of her cries she makes when she just wakes up for a second and maybe is a little confused, but then goes right back to sleep. I decided I’d check just to be sure. I knew something was wrong as soon as I went in. It smelled terrible. I picked her up and realized she had throw up all over her and the bed. Poor girl. I asked Steve to help me tackle cleaning her bed while I gave her a quick bath.

I put her in bed with me and just held her for awhile. And the puking continued. Every 20 or 30 minutes. It was so sad. She looked confused and seemed like she was going to choke everytime. Eventually she was so dehdyrated she was crying for water, she’d gulp in down, then throw it right back up. I hated it. At one point Steve took over staying awake for awhile, I was so tired, I needed to shut my eyes for awhile. It wasn’t long though before the next throw up would wake me up. We debated taking her to the ER. On New Year’s she had the same symptoms and my doctor said it’s dangerous for little ones to get dehydrated. And Ella’s lips were getting really dry and cracking and when she hadn’t stopped by 4 a.m., we decided we had better take her.

We waited and waited to see a doctor in the ER. Right away they checked her hydration, it was still OK, and they gave her some anti-nausea medicine to stop the vomiting. (I wish I could buy that in the store!) But the doctor also wanted to do a series of other tests – a urine test, x-rays and blood tests -to rule out some things. They took the x-ray, which made me extremely uncomfortable. They had to put a huge protective vest on me but then they just point the machine right at my tiny baby. How can that be?! She looked scared too. Next some ladies came in for the blood sample. As Ella screamed they stuck her in the arm, but couldn’t get any blood. It seemed like it was taking forever. I was just trying not to cry. It was terrible. They left to go get another needle. Steve and I talked it over. This was ridiculous. The flu had been passed around a few weeks ago. I had no reason to believe it was something else. We decided to tell them we don’t want anymore testing – I didn’t know how they were planning to take a urine sample – and we were taking her home. If the sickness continued, we’d see our doctor.

We finally arrived home, at 7 a.m. I woke around 9 a.m. to visit with Chey and Liam and tell them the news, the party was going to have to be canceled. We debated it. Ella seemed like she was on the mend. It was likely a 24-hour bug. But would she still be contagious? If not, could one of us be carrying it? Not to mention we had slept about 2 hours and still had a lot do to before the party. It just wasn’t meant to be, we decided. I made a list and started calling guests. It really sucked. I was really really looking forward to seeing a bunch of people and we were planning on about 10 little kids, my SIL was bringing a bouncy house for them to play in. Ella would have had so much fun. Not to mention all the work Chey and I had done. And Steve, who was sore from all the landscaping work.

Getting better, then worse

Oh well, there are a lot of worse things in life than canceling a party, I know. It is MEMORIAL DAY weekend afterall. Ella woke up and she still had some recuperating. She just wanted to be held a lot of the day. It was the right thing to do to cancel. Today I got an email from a former boss, a woman I really respect. She said she was impressed that we canceled even though she knew it was probably really hard. She had to cancel her son’s 5th birthday party once when he was sick. I thought that was really sweet of her. We didn’t really have a choice though. What was I going to do? Make margaritas with one hand while I was holding my sick child in the other hand? We were just doing what parents have to do … and I think karma has already payed me back.

Sunday night rolled around and I started feeling really nauseous. Uh oh. It kept getting worse and worse. My husband had to leave that afternoon for a business trip too. Ella was doing a lot better, but it got to the point where I didn’t want to move or I felt like I would get sick. So, I called in the big guns. My mom. She had already been to Fort Wayne earlier to visit us so I hated asking her to drive all the way back, but I needed help. She came right over with an overnight bag. She took Ella outside to play, made her dinner and cleaned my house. Thank God.

We ended up having lots of fun over the weekend though. Those were just the dramatic parts. Lots of playtime with Chey and Liam, and a few people still came over Sunday night after Ella was in bed. I’m posting photos below.

The bad thing is my mom isn’t feeling too good today though. Now she has the bug .. I’m sorry mom!!!


On Saturday, when we were young and naive and thought we could shop for a party for 30 people with two toddlers.


When they weren’t fighting over something they were really sweet playing together.


Bubbles. Is there anything more fun to 1-year-olds?


A little cool down.


And finally, time to unwind.


Dinner erupted in high fives one night. They must have really liked it.


We couldn’t calm Ella down at one point … until we discovered she wanted to wear Liam’s red shoes. They were pretty cute.

Heeey … Macarena

May 22nd, 2008

Yay! David Cook won American Idol! I’m so happy it turned out that way. I think he’s going to be hugely famous. And he seriously seems nice. Like not arrogant at all and just sorta thoughtful and genuine. Like I know him at all. But really, you get a little bit of an idea of what people are like. And what a shocker. The judges were drooling all over David Archuleta last night. That kid’s going to be huge too though.

Anyway I will miss the show. It gave my sister and I a weekly thing to look forward to doing. Last night, she came over to my house for it. My little punkin was in bed, but before long she was clanging at our crib bars with full force. And we had just been talking about how she used to go to bed at 7 and I had two whole hours of me time, but recently it’s become 8 p.m. And I’ve adjusted. It’s not much time though. 1 hour a day to do what I want. But last night she got up and was up past, GULP, 9. Uh oh, as she would say. And that has happened a few times lately. Please, baby, I need that 1 hour! Although she was so sweet last night. I told her to go get her baby and she went to the other room, got her baby and brought her to me. I was so impressed she understood and also didn’t get distracted on the way there. Then she planted a sweet little kiss right on baby’s mouth. So cute. She must know that if she’s extra cute she can stay up late.

Whew, so, with the idol final and my niece’s concert on Tuesday night, there’s been a lot of singing this week. Yes, 3-year-old London got to flaunt her singing and dancing skills to the song Macarena, among others, to a packed crowd of parents and families at her daycare concert. Have you ever seen 20 three-year-olds do a song and dance together? Hilarious. Of course London was entertaining all on her own. She really got into the dance. She’s been practicing for weeks. She hopped out in front of the kids and showed off her moves, and of course, she wore her favorite leopard-print sundress, so she looked darling. The best part was when she saw my mother (grandma) and me and completely stopped to give us a huge wave and smile. When I wasn’t focusing on my niece I tried to just take in the whole scene because it was just funny. Kids just standing facing all directions, dance moves all out of sync, at one point one of them just stood there crying. It’s just so great because as we get older we care so much about how we’re perceived, but kids just let loose. Can you imagine if we just cried at work every time we were stressed out or upset?

I also watched American Idol that night with Sara. Although, we may have missed a lot of it because of a certain little singer/dancer that was harassing me. Lucky for her she also at one point tilted her head and said “I love you Aunt Eri.” OK, I can miss seeing David Cook sing for that.

My friend’s back in the Mid west

May 21st, 2008

My best friend since middle school has moved back to the Mid west and I’m really excited. For the first time in about 11 years, we live just hours from each other. So, sorry if you don’t really care, but today I feel like reminiscing about my friend Chey …
Cheyenne and I met when she moved to Kendallville at about age 11. I befriended her right away because I imagined it must be hard being the new kid. We’ve been friends ever since.
We’ve gone through a lot together in the past 20 years of our friendship.
We went through the typical high school stuff — boyfriends and breakups and getting in trouble with our parents — and some not-so-typical stuff. At one point Chey dropped out of highschool, only later to go back and make straight As. And that is exactly how she is. When she goes for something, she goes for it.
Cheyenne and I would later go off to college together. Ball State. We made lists and lists and lists of the things we needed and we stockpiled it in my parent’s basement. It was so exciting. We’re both complete organizing nerds, so it was the ultimate project. And we did have the best dorm room. Everything anybody needed. And Cheyenne was always a great cook too. It seemed like everyone came around when she made a batch of her spicy chili. Our Margarita Mondays may have had something to do with that too.
We’ve gone through our bad times too though. Our good friend Laura was in a serious accident our first year of college. As Laura and another friend crossed the street leaving a party, Laura got hit by a car. She was in a coma for over a month, had brain surgery and both legs were broken, among other things. Our close-knit group of friends was never the same. Thankfully, Laura recovered and eventually moved back East. Cheyenne moved South to be near her parents and attend a Culinary Arts School.
The move put Cheyenne about 12 hours away, but we remained close. Once a year I would go down to visit. Sometimes it would be a carload of girls and sometimes I would just fly down to see her. Once we met in the middle — somewhere in Kentucky — with our boyfriends and camped for a few days.
Many years later Cheyenne followed her Culinary Arts career to a restaurant in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Around the same time my boyfriend (husband now) Steve and I received job offers in California. We decided to make the move to Palm Springs. I was so happy that once again Cheyenne and I would live in the same part of the United States. Once I actually mapped it though, I realized that once again, we would be 12 hours apart. Ughh.
We remained close still though. I went to visit her and she came to California. And we have always been good about phone calls too. Unfortunately she never got in to checking e-mail or even turning on a computer. It’s her one downfall.
A few years later, my husband and I relocated to Michigan. Cheyenne was still in Albuquerque. I’ll never forget when she called to tell me she might be pregnant. For some reason, I kept thinking she wasn’t. Like I had some divine way of knowing. We just kinda talked about it like it was a possibility, but we didn’t really believe it was possible. She said she’d take a test and call me back. She called me back and said “Well, I’m pregnant.” I said “WHAT?” She said “I’m pregnant.” I said, “WHAT?” Again, she said “I’m pregnant.” And again, I said “WHAT?” At that point she said “Don’t make me say it again.”
It was in fact, a surprise, but like anything else Cheyenne went after motherhood with serious dedication. She eventually left her job to stay home with Liam, and she became very environmentally conscious — using cloth diapers and making a lot of her own baby products or using only organic. Her boyfriend, Milos, took a trucking job that put him on the road all the time. She remains tough though, even though it means shouldering so much responsibility at home.
Meanwhile, I moved to Indiana. I was really excited for her, but kinda jealous too. I had really been thinking about starting a family and I couldn’t believe Chey had beat me to it! I really, really hoped it would happen for us to.
And it did. Before we knew it, we were expecting too. And our babies ended up being only six months apart. I’ve met her little boy, Liam, a few times now. And she’s spent some time with Ella as well. And of course, we’ve had many, many phone conversations about them. It’s really cool our babies are so close in age. We would manage to stay close even if that wasn’t the case, but if she was still working and socializing all the time, we would be living in two different worlds. It would have been harder to relate I think.
Anyway, I’m so excited she’s here. A couple of hours seems like nothing after all of the trips we’ve made to see each other over the years … So, anyway, even if she won’t ever read this blog, can’t wait to see you Chey!!!!

    About Us

    Me. Blogger. Formerly lived carefree life of eating out, staying out late, traveling and whatever else I wanted. Now mostly chase around two kids, cook, clean and work as graphic artist.

    Wonderful web guru husband who prepared this site for me. He's even trying to help to do dishes more around the house. Good man. I met him at a party in college in 1998 and he still hasn’t gone home.

    Unbelievably cute daughter who's been running the show at our house since March of 2007.

    Our newest, precious girl who just joined us in December of 2009.