Saturday, January 31, 2009

Pink Eye, Yuch!

Well, it's official. Princess M has her first prescription worthy illness. She slept with me for most of the night because she wasn't feeling well and woke up half way through the night with her eye welded shut with the goopies (pus, eye buggers, or whatever you want to call them. They're gross all the same) It's actually a good thing she was in my bed at the time. When she couldn't open her eye she started to panic, and I was able to calm her down before it turned into hysteria. But I decided then and there to take her to the urgent care clinic today, and sure enough: Pink Eye.

The doctor on call was fantastic. He was very good with M, and afterwards she said to me, "Mom! He was NICE to me!" I guess she's accustomed to getting poked with needles when we see the doctor. And he did me the great favor of telling M that she is not allowed to go near Baby A for 4 days. Now, I don't have to be the mean mom who won't let her be with her baby. It's the DOCTOR that said so! It's so hard for her to remember, though. She loves to play with Baby A. She definitely accepts the doctor's authority better than she would mine, however.

And now we've got this nice gel to squirt in her eyes three times a day. She's been such a trouper about letting me pull her lids down and squirt the stuff in. It clouds up her vision for a bit; and I think it might sting a little; but she's been very compliant about the whole thing. Even when I told her we'd have to cancel church and going to friends and family's homes that we had planned. She was disappointed, but she didn't throw a fit. She just sadly accepted it. I'm very proud of how well she is dealing with this.

My poor little girl! Not feeling well, no swim class, no church, no friends, no family, can't even play with her sister, has to constantly wash her hands, get stuff squirted in her eyes, has a cold still on top of it all, and has to sit around watching movies all day for 4 days. (ok, she's going to love that last part.)

On a lighter note, I have a cute story to tell. We spent a lot of time in the car today with all the doctors, and pharmacies, and such. She likes to watch the lights and tell me when I should stop at the reds and go at the greens. Well, she was being a little slow on the call, and got mad at me when I would go before she told me to. I finally explained to her that other cars were waiting behind us, and if I didn't go when it turned green, they were going to get mad and honk at us. And we don't want the cars to get mad at us, do we? This is essentially what she said,:

"No we don't. Cuz then they might get us...they might get us outside the car, and, and,then they might take our car, and, and, leave us on the street, and, and we'll never go home again, and, and, we'll never see our daddy again, or our kitties! And that would be so sad!!!"

All because we waited too long at a light to go. Wow! I agreed with her; that would be VERY sad! Oh, but I love her imagination!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Xi'an, China

Another post from Alex:

Spent the last 2 days in Xi’an, China. Well, we really spent 3 days here, but the first day included the early morning flight from Beijing and the rest of the day with me holed up in our hotel, sick from something I ate. Mom suggested it was the mayonnaise from my lunch on the airplane which seemed unlikely until she pointed out what mayo has in it… so perhaps.

The second day, I spent the morning and early afternoon fighting off the remnants of said food sickness, then emerged victorious, I suppose, with hunger pangs and some interest in seeing the city.

We ventured forth and visited the Drum tower of the city of Xi’an. Each major city and, I learned today, some smaller enclaves like monasteries, had a Bell tower to ring the bell at dawn and a Drum tower to beat the drum at dusk. Sensibly, the bell was the easternmost of the two. Following that short excursion, Mike departed, he having little desire to visit the same shops that he had visited yesterday with Mom, which she was intent to take me to now that I was feeling better.

We went to a calligraphy shop where we had the artist do my daughters’ names. It was wonderful.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Great Wall!

For some reason, Alex can't post to the blog from China; so here's what he sent me to post for him:

We went to the Great Wall of China today! I’ve been excited about going to the Wall ever since I started making plans to catch up with my mother and brother there.

After taking a bus out to the site (the part of the Wall we visited was known as Badaling, a rather built up, commercialized spot), we paid our 40 yuan each (about seven bucks) and started making our way along the sinuous lines of the Wall. The Wall was over 2000 miles long at one point, but much of it has fallen into disrepair and is nothing more than a snaking pile of dirt.

We spent about two hours walking along, climbing up and down the Wall before we got to what was the top of that part. After snapping a few pictures, we made our way over to a handy cable car and took it down. I kinda felt like my brother and I were cheating by not hoofing it back down, but the view was enjoyable and I would do it again and recommend it to others.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Tea Time!

The weather has turned cold here. Bitter cold! Which means my feet are ALWAYS frigid and I often have a cup of hot tea sitting close at hand. And I'm not talking a small cup; I'm talking the LARGE cup. I feel like Mike Meyers in "So I Married an Ax Murderer" with the LARGE cappuccino. "Hello!"

(Once again, I have no camera while Alex is in China, so you'll be getting Internet photos on my blog for a while.)

I served my mission in the Czech Republic, which is where I really became a tea drinker. In a country where they serve you a cup of tea as soon as you enter the door, no matter if they know you or not, you very quickly learn which teas are against the Word of Wisdom (a sort of code of health required in the LDS faith) and which teas are fantastic! A good rule of thumb is that "colored" teas (black, white, green, etc.) are against the W of W, and the fruit and herbals are just fine.

Having said that, not all fruit and herbal teas are made the same. For instance, Celestial Seasonings (which is typically the only brand available in US grocery stores) is really not very good stuff. I'll grant their Peppermint is not bad; but then again, you really can't mess up mint. The other flavors that I've tried are really not that pleasant to choke down.

The cup of tea I have in front of me at this moment, however, is something that most Americans, unfortunately, have never experienced. It's a brand I discovered in Liberec, Czech Republic; is actually an English company; and I have to special order it on the Internet (or visit a tea shop in Europe) to even find it. The London Fruit & Herb Company, by far, makes the best fruit teas I've ever tasted; some of my favorite flavors being Strawberries & Vanilla, Blueberry Bliss, Peach Paradise, and the flavor I'm enjoying at this very moment, Raspberry Rendezvous. Mmmmmm

Drop on by sometime and share a cup with me! It's a delicious way to cut the chill, and, believe me, I'm very well stocked. I think I've got a full box of just about every flavor they make. (There's no shipping charge if you order bulk enough.) Watch out though. You just may find yourself shopping on the Internet for tea, of all things.

And now my cup is empty, so I'm off to bed.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Just Cuz

What to blog about? I'm sitting thinking about what to write. No long stories to tell today. Several small snippets of going ons. Maybe this will just have to be a very random post.

M must have a radar connection to Baby A. I was putting her to bed, and M was being very good and waiting quietly in her room for me to come cuddle. Baby A was slowly closing her eyes, drooping, drooping, and finally closed for good and "BANG!" the bedroom door suddenly slams for no reason whatsoever. Holding my temper at bay, I go explain to M that Baby A is falling asleep so we need to be QUIET; and go back to starting over getting my infant to sleep. It takes longer but finally once again, she closes her eyes in what promises to be a deep slumber... "MOM!!! I GO PEE PEE AND POO POO!!" (Her way of asking/screaming for a wipe.) Have mercy, child!

Despite her tendency to interrupt peaceful slumber, M really is a great big sister. Especially, now that Daddy is gone, M has been a real help; from fetching diapers and blankets, to choosing clothes for the baby, to entertaining Baby A while Mom takes a shower. She loves it when Baby A will smile or giggle at something she did. If she notices that Baby A is asleep, she'll come whisper to us that we need to be quiet, and get mad at me when I tease her by talking loudly. ;) My, how she loves to use all my scolding phrases against me. I know she can't wait until Baby A is old enough to eat solids, so that she can feed her too.

I can't wait until Baby A is a little bigger and they will be able to play together. I only hope that this loving and protecting feeling will grow between them as they grow older. It just melts my heart to see it now.

On the eastern front, Alex was in China for the Chinese New Year today (or was it last night?) Anyway, I'll bug him to get on the blog and write about it; hopefully with a few pictures.

You know sometimes it seems that all I ever say is "NO!" to my daughter. Sometimes I feel like the biggest wet blanket on earth. I've been trying to loosen up a bit and really think about some of her requests, and decide if they are really important to deny. I've been having a lot of fun smiling, and saying a big "Yes!" to some of her requests. Especially when you can tell she wasn't expecting her mother to give in. I invariably get a surprised and sincere, "Thank you so much!" from my sweet little girl.

I really love being a Mom! Even if it does mean that I'll have to wait to go to China myself until a later time in life, when there aren't infants that completely rely on me and no one else for their needs. It's definitely worth it!

Friday, January 23, 2009


Well, two days down without Alex and it hasn't been too bad. I did make the mistake of reading a real live ghost story on a friend's blog last night right before going to bed. (The blog is linked on the side in my good reads section "Easily Amused" if you'd like to read a good ghost story; kinda creapy) Boy, was I missing my sleeping buddy after that, let me tell you. The house is so empty at night when he's gone. And my imagination goes crazy on me.

M has fallen a little sick, nothing very serious, just enough to make her wheeze a little and be VERY emotional. On the plus side, she didn't fight me at all on taking a nap today. So I got a lot done (cleaned) while my two girls slept. I must say the house is looking absolutely fantastic! (except my office, I'll get to that tomorrow maybe.)

We've been including in all our prayers a request to keep Daddy safe. M insists on making "on the airplane" part of the phrase. I explained to her today that Daddy isn't on the airplane anymore. That he's in China now. Seeing the complete lack of understanding on her face, I told her China was the land that Mulan was from. That Daddy was in Mulan's land and will see the funny buildings, fireworks, dragons, and all the neat stuff that's in the movie. She really grasped on to that! And everything has been "Mulan" today. In fact the movie is playing even now as I type. I heard her talking to her Mulan doll today about her Daddy being there. It was really cute.

I also told her that Daddy had gone to see Grandma Lynda and Uncle Mike for a while. She says, "But I want to see Grandma Lynda too!" I know how you feel, M. Believe me, I want to go too.

Alex, if you read this post, I think a cute Chinese doll would be very well received by your daughter when you come home. And lots of pictures of Mulan's land. We miss you; have fun; and take care.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Our Prisoner's Last Request

Yesterday, M got in trouble at bedtime for continually getting out of bed (and waking up the baby in the process) so we shut her bedroom door. I know it sounds weak, but it is actually quite the effective punishment for her.

After she had some time to calm down and stop crying, I heard her whimpering something from behind her door. I asked her what she wanted and she replied, "I want to see your toesies." (She was laying down by the door looking underneath.)

Despite my frustration, I was touched that even though she couldn't have her door open, she took solace in at least being able to see my feet at the door. I placed each foot in turn right up to the crack under the door for her, and she reached out her little fingers under the door to touch them. How sweet is that?!

It's Been a Long Week

I was on a roll there for a while. My new (new to me anyway) laptop started having a hard drive problem, so I became computerless again.

Also, I began a new job this week. I'm doing accounting work for a computer technology company here in town. They're a really great bunch of people, and I'm really enjoying the job so far. It's only part time, so I don't have to be away from Princess A for too long. I must say though that it's nice to feel needed professionally again.

Alex has been discovering that Mr. Mom is not as easy as he would have thought. Especially since Baby A will not take a bottle. So he's pretty much helpless when she gets hungry near the end of my shift. He, however, left today on an airplane for China, to meet up with his mom and brother for a 10 day trip (which just happens to include the Chinese New Year!) Lucky Dog! I'm thoroughly jealous, but I wish them a fun and safe trip. And meanwhile, I'll need to work out babysitters for when I need to go into work. Thankfully, it is not everyday.

Alex took the camera with him to document this wondrous trip; so there won't be any photos on the blog for a while. He did say he MIGHT post an entry or two about his trip, so maybe there will be a few pictures then.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Goose Eggs and a Pike in the Water

We had quite the exciting morning today. We were going to go work out at the YMCA, which means that M & A get to go to the child watch (M calls it her exercise class and she loves it!) And on top of that we decided to go swimming afterwards so M could practice her new swimming skills. (She just started swim lessons last Saturday. She's in the "Pike" class.) M was so excited this morning when I told her the plan that she took off like a shot down the hall to get dressed. A couple minutes later I heard her tearing down the hall again back towards my room, and then a sudden, very loud "THUNK!" My first instinct was to laugh; but luckily, I held it in, because it turned out to be a real doozie of an injury.

Look at those tears!

Look at that goose egg!

After an appropriate amount of cuddling and icing down the goose egg, she was still determined to go to the YMCA. We went and had a great time. M has always been a fish in the water with absolutely no fear. She's learning her skills very quickly and very well. We're so very proud of her. I'll have to get a picture of her in her class this Saturday.

Monday, January 12, 2009


M picked out a few books from the library this week. We read this one "The Snowflake Sisters" the other day.

It's a cute little story about two snowflakes enjoying the sights and adventures of wintertime. One part in it described children playing in the park, trying to catch snowflakes on their tongues. Well, it snowed yesterday, and I found M outside trying to catch some herself. I thought it was too cute.

(Don't you just love the scarf? It was one of the first knitting projects I made.)

In the end, it was just easier to eat the snow from the ground, than from the sky.


Princess M has several really beautiful dresses that she would never wear before because they were "scratchy" inside. Well, she has now discovered the magic of wearing a t-shirt underneath to solve the scratchy problem. She can very often be found wearing her princess dresses with random shirts underneath now (my favorite was the green camouflage under the pink princess dress.) And the shoes she chose to wear to church just finished the ensemble.

Oh the things a Daddy will do for the love of a princess.

These are actually my pj's, but it was Daddy turn to put M to bed, and she wanted to be matching. To get the whole experience, you need to now sing "Strawberry Jammies" (to the tune of "Raspberry Beret.")

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Back to School

With the slower economy and tax season fast approaching, I've begun looking for a part time job that's flexible and preferably something I could do at home. I've been attending a tax preparation review class every night this week (my excuse for not blogging in a while) and am remembering that I really enjoyed this stuff back when I use to work on taxes back in AZ. There are a couple changes since I prepared taxes then, but for the most part, it's all starting to come back to me. I'm seriously thinking about reinstating my CPA license.

Most people probably don't know that I was ever a licensed CPA in Colorado. That's because I didn't finish the licensing until after we moved to AZ. And since a CO license is not valid in AZ, I never did anything to keep it from lapsing. And then I really got into real estate, and I honestly didn't think I'd be doing accounting again for a LONG time.

But there you have it: I'm a closet CPA, and now I'm considering brushing off the cobwebs and coming out of the closet again (convenient that we're back in CO again). Luckily my license has only been expired for a couple years, so all I need to do to reinstate is take a ton of continuing education classes. So I'll soon be a student again.

I remember the time I received my official college diploma/degree. I was staying at my brother's house at the time waiting for my new job to start when the manila envelope arrived in the mail. I was so excited to see it, and I could tell my nephew J thought I was a weirdo. I showed him the unimpressive, single sheet of paper and asked him, "do you know what this paper means?" "It means that I never have to go to school ever again." He was much more impressed and I believe quite jealous too.

But I've come to understand that I was wrong. Learning and even formal school never really ends. And it's not such a bad thing either. I seem to enjoy "school" much more than I used to. I'm really looking forward to studying our great country's tax system again.

Ok, maybe I really am weird after all!

Friday, January 9, 2009

HELP!!! Anyone please!

Ok, so I've figured out how to post links, pics, video, slide shows, change my templates, etc for my blog; but for the life of me, I can't figure out how to post an MP3. I have several now that I'm dying to post, and I can't do it.

Can anyone please tell me how to do this? it's got to be possible!


Friday, January 2, 2009

Few Random Pics

Here it is: The First Picture of 2009!

We went over to my brother's home to bring in the new year. Nothing fancy, just family having fun; and watching the fireworks on Pikes Peak. Both Princesses M & A stayed up all the way until midnight. This is the drive home that night.

A couple other sleeping photos:

Alex was "putting M down for a nap"

It always amazes me how kids can sleep like this:

This was a little late in the taking, but I needed a 3 month old pic of Baby A

And of course, if I take a pic of A then M must be in a pic too. Here's my little poser: