Thursday, August 28, 2008

Will's first haircut

Everyone has been telling me that I couldn't cut Will's hair until after he turned one. (I guess this is some unwritten rule that I don't know about.) Well he was beginning to look like Shaggy and Jason was threatening to get out the clippers and give him a buzz cut. Totally not happening to my baby!! I took Will in this morning for his first haircut and as is typical with Will, he didn't even cry. He just sat there and tried to attack everything that came within arms reach. Let's see if Daddy even notices he got a haircut.

Monday, August 25, 2008

then and now

We just returned from a quick to CBus for the weekend. We had a family reunion and went to pick up Nene, who will be staying with us for a few weeks. YAY!! We love the extended Nene visits. Jason and I have a wedding coming up in Indiana but I will post about that later. According to Isabella we have not officially arrived in Ohio until we drive by the Miranova and pass through downtown. Then she announces we are finally in Ohio and "the big city". It is the same every time.

Saturday morning Isabella, Amelia and I headed to Easton for some shopping. There are probably less stressful things to do on a Saturday morning than lug two toddlers shopping but there are very few things that come between me and chance to go to Nordies or Easton in general. After a few hours shopping and lunch we headed off to see my 4H Club. We spent Saturday afternoon with a very special family that I used to nanny for. Halston, Holland, Helena and Holden and their wonderful parents Marian and Shreve. When I started watching them 9 years ago, the twins were 8 months, Holland was 4 and Halston 6. Holland is now almost as tall as me and Halston is over six feet tall. The twins who were babies are now in third grade. When I think back to all I learned from taking care of them I know that I am a better mother because of it. I am amazed at how they have grown and how well mannered they still are. I still enjoy sitting and talking to them and hearing what is going on in there lives. My little Helena watched and entertained my girls the entire visit..she has always been the little mother. Even though they aren't my own children, each of them will always have a special place in my heart.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

a bizarre tradition

When we moved into this house I loved the light colored carpet and the open feel it gave the house. After two years, three kids and scrubbing out countless stains, I am no longer feeling the love. The carpet also has to be vacuumed often or it looks disgusting and drives me crazy. I guess this is a lasting side effect of growing up in a house that was vacuumed daily. Vacuuming in our house is a bizarre event the kids enjoy. Maybe it is my own fault because since they were itty bitty I have worn each of them in the Baby Bjorn whenever I vacuum. I guess I thought the white noise would soothe them. Maybe I thought being so close to it from the beginning would keep them from being afraid of it later or maybe I was trying to send them subliminal messages to someday help mom out with the vacuuming..just not quite this early. Regardless of my earlier ideas about the vacuum cleaner each child is obsessed with it now. No matter what I get the them involved in before I get it out, as soon as they see the vacuum cleaner everyone immediately stops what they are doing and grabs their appropriate vacuum "equipment" to help me. Isabella has her own mini vacuum, Amelia pushes Bear-Bear in a stroller and Will is Johnny on the Spot trying to crawl up the vacuum cleaner and stick his fingers under the front. As soon as he sees me wheel it out of the laundry room the look of determination is on his face and he tucks his head, crawling as fast as he can around the house following me, Bella and Amelia. There is a distinct pecking order in our bizarre vacuuming train. So not only do I have to vacuum around furniture, I also vacuum around children that are supposed to stay behind me at all times out of my way...a rule when Mommy vacuums. It is a task that once completed I feel like I could use a good drink. Yesterday I decided I would try vacuuming while Bella was at preschool and see if I could quickly accomplish it without having to maneuver around the kids. No such luck. As soon as the Eureka came rolling out of the laundry room, Amelia grabbed the stroller and Will came motoring on over. Of course it was not a quick job. I snapped a few pictures when I was switching outlets, the worst part of the entire experience because then they overtake the vacuum and I have to remove each child and get them back to their appropriate equipment. And some people think I sit on the couch all day.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

First Day of Preschool!

Today was Bella's first day of preschool. She has been acting a little different all week and said she was a little nervous about starting school. Jason went in late to work so we could both drop her off on her first day. She decided on the drive there it was okay if just Mommy walked her in. I took her to her room and hung her back pack up and when I turned to give her a hug goodbye she was already playing. I waved goodbye and she waved and still no hug. I guess Miss Bella was more ready for preschool than she thought!! She made a special hand print "kiss" to bring home to let me know she really did miss me. And she is pretty excited about being able to play on the playground, eat lunch with her new friends and go to music class. Her only complaint is her purple backpack still hasn't arrived. Once she has it, I think she will be just fine.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Preschool Open House

Isabella is very excited about going to preschool and has been asking me all summer when school is starting. The county schools started Wednesday and she has become even more anxious now that the school buses are driving by our house again. We finally had our open house this morning! Bella was able to meet her teacher Mrs. Brandy, play in the classroom and look around the new facility. She even saw a few of her friends and her dance teacher! She is pretty excited and is already asking me when her "real" first day of school is.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Things have been a little crazy lately in our household. I love being able to stay home with the kids full time but I also miss daily adult interaction. So after much thought and consideration I decided to go back to work one or two nights a week and one weekend afternoon. I found a great company, that I am pretty familiar with, that was willing to work around both mine and Jason's schedule and I started last week. Right in the middle of tax free weekend. After four years off I was a little nervous but it was like riding a bicycle and I am very happy with my decision. The kids and Jason seem to be adjusting okay. Isabella thinks I work at the movie theatre selling popcorn so no complaints from her.

William has four teeth coming in and has been a total grouch lately. Not to mention he is not the best sleeper and likes to take a morning and evening nap and stay up crying in the afternoon. This usually wakes one or both of his sisters up, not to mention drives me insane, so he is only allowed an afternoon nap. Usually around 11AM he starts in whining and it turns in to an all out wail by lunch time. This has been going on for a little over three weeks. The girls walk around with their hands over their ears or shut themselves in a bedroom to play during the daily screamfest. I'm not so lucky. Will is fully mobile now and crawls after me as I am making lunch or cleaning up the morning mess. If I hold him to try and quiet the screaming he immediately falls asleep. Every day I can't help but remember the Friends episode when Rachel and Janice are in labor together and Ross makes a comment about Janice's semi-deaf husband. Hopefully the teeth come in soon and I get my happy little guy back soon.
Everyone told me that the second child is laid back and follows what the older sibling does. Not my Amelia. She has a mind of her own and while she likes to be like big sister she also wants to do things herself her own way. She has also officially entered the terrible twos. I don't remember it being this early or this bad with Isabella. Amelia's favorite word right now is "no" and she repeats it after every question. She has also taken to throwing herself on to the ground if she doesn't get her way. I ignore this behavior and usually just step right over her as she is laying on the floor wailing. She will get up and throw herself down again in front of me as if I missed the first Oscar worthy production. Thankfully ignoring this behavior seems to be working as it is limited only to our house and people always tell me how well behaved and well mannered she is for 20 months.

Isabella has a horrible case of the "me firsts". She has to be first at everything, every time. She starts preschool next Wednesday and I have tried to prepare her all summer for the harsh reality that she won't always get to be first and the importance of waiting our turn. We have even started alternating days where Isabella gets to do everything first one day and Amelia the next. Some days, of course, go smoother than others. I just hope that she actually learns good things in preschool and doesn't bring home bad habits that I try to keep out of our household. I recently read a friend's post on manners and it was like reading about our own house :) I was so relieved to read about another mom teaching her two young daughters the same values we do. I know my kids are young but I have always felt they are never too young to learn to be polite and respectful of themselves and others. It makes me sad that common courtesies aren't being taught in every household anymore.

Friday, August 1, 2008

five years ago today..

Five years ago today I met Jason on base at a BBQ that I wasn't supposed to be at, in a town I didn't even live in. If you would have told me then that we would have been engaged three months later, to a soldier, I would have laughed. Actually after he stood me up at a party that first night and made me hunt him down at a local pub, I probably would have told you we wouldn't even have been dating. Just kidding. I have to remind him of that now and again.
I feel like we have been together much longer than five years. Of course I mean that in a good way. It hasn't always been easy but being married to someone in the military never is. I feel like our life is never completely our own. We have been seperated just as much as we have been together. People have told me during Jason's deployments, various out of town schooling or business trips that I knew what I signed up for. The only thing I know is I love my husband. The rest I've pretty much had to learn as we go along.

Jason and I spent less than 100 days together the first year we were married. I was stuck in Arkansas, a place I never even wanted to visit, let alone live, pregnant on bed-rest. Isabella was born two days after Thanskgiving and Jason left the day after New Years. The week before our first anniversary we got word he would be deploying for at least a year and frantically made arrangements for me to move to Ohio. Jason left for Iraq three weeks later. Isabella was a little over two months old. He came home for her first birthday and we spent two wonderful weeks together. Of course they went by too quickly but I cherished every moment. I remember driving him to the airport that morning, fighting back tears as I was not going to have a breakdown in front of my husband. It was hard enough for him to leave his family again. He was the last one to board and I couldn't stop the tears as the plane pulled away from the gate. An older woman came up to me as I was sitting there, smiled and handed me a tissue. All she said before walking away "It's hard being in love with a hero." Cliche, yes. True, absolutely.

While in Iraq, Jason decided to join the Acquisition Corps so he could spend more time with his family and have less deployments. Upon his return we moved to Huntsville Alabama in June 2006. We bought our first house and welcomed Amelia to our family two days after Christmas. 2007 brought another pregnancy and finally a boy. Jason was so excited!! William made his debut on December 3rd.

Jason is an amazing husband and an even better father. He has two little girls that miss him so much every day while he is working, they run to the door to meet him as soon as they hear the garage door each night. I have learned that when Daddy is on a trip not to do laundry because they mistake the washing machine for the garage door and keep running to the back door all day. Our little man Will cries if Daddy comes home and does not pick him up immediately. I know as soon as he is able he will be running to the door with his sisters. I am thankful that we only have to deal with business trips and not the long deployments that still affect our friends.

Five years ago I never would have imagined we would be living in yet another state, driving a mini-van (still not cool), with three children. But here I am. Thankful that I was in the right place at the right time and that sometimes we actually do get the happy endings we dream of.