Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Being bashful, it came out in our nightly ritual of me and him whispering in the dark.

I got to chose out of the treasure box today FIRST.

You did? Wow! That's so cool. How come you got to go first? Just lucky?

No. It's because I had the most Mighty Mustangs.

What are Mighty Mustangs?

They're papers you get if you are a self manager.

Self Manager?

Yeah, doing the right thing. Being a good boy.

What did you do to get all of them?

Well, 2 of them were just on my table with no name on them, so I just wrote 'Maysen' on them.

Wow. Now THAT's a great example of self-managing.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Florida Trip & "Surprise Beach" cruise with Dad and Jo

The first surprise of this trip was that we were flying to Florida to visit dad and Jo. We had hidden "clues" around the house. First was a picture of dad and Jo's camper. Then the next clue was a picture of Florida. The last clue was a picture of an airplane. We had dad and Jo on Skype watching them running around looking for clues.

We told the boys we couldn't leave for our trip until daddy was done with work. Nate and I had hte car loaded and waited for them to walk off the bus and as soon as they did we busted the doors open and said "LETS GO NOW!" We drove to Portland and spent the night before our 5:00am flight.

The following day everything was going smooth. Too smooth. Boys got up without a problem, we had our bags ready, airport went smooth, boarding went smooth. We are up in the air about an hour right as the sun was coming up and I start to notice some commotion a few rows up from us. It was a younger woman yelling "Mom, mom?" at the older woman beside her. Pandamonium broke out. WE NEED A DOCTOR! The frantic flight attendants are going down the aisle asking for anyone with medical training to help. Now, I'm sitting there thinking "I'm on vacation. I'm on vacation" when low and behold Maysen jumps up and yells "MY MOM IS A NURSE!!" 203 eyes turn and look at me so I wander up to the commotion. This plane is worthless for equipment. They had a BP cuff but it was from 1938 and didn't hardly work. Long story short, this poor woman was having either a heart attack or a stroke and we needed to land the plane NOW. The copilot comes down the aisle and starts talking to me about an emergency landing. We agree to wait 5 more minutes to land in Salt Lake.

We make a hard landing and before we know it, paramedics are on board getting this woman off the plane. I go back to my seat and avoid people staring at me wanting to know details. We were treated like royalty the rest of the flight! Free food, free drinks. But I kept waiting for us to go back up in the air. We just SAT THERE. Second Long Story: We had landed at Salt Lake City - an airport that does not contract with American Airlines. Considering we landed so "heavy" (we weren't supposed to land until Dallas, so we still had a lot more fuel on board than we were supposed to) the plane needed a safety inspection before we could go back up. Problem: the inspection had to be done by an American Airlines inspector and since SLC didn't contract with AA they had none. After about 2hrs worth of faxing back and forth, they crowned one of their techs "AA certified" and we were up in the air. Of course that meant we missed our connection in Dallas and by the time all was said and done it was 1:00am and we were landing in Florida. (I did get a $500 voucher out of AA, though!)

We had fun our first few days in Florida. We went to the beach and hung out. The boys loved Golden Corral. (unlimited cotton candy!). Maysen did get a bit wigged out of all the critters. Our wonderful little chalet did have a few centipedes and other critters and he just couldn't handle that. Luckily the very next night we were "going to Surprise Beach" and spending a few nights there.

We loaded up around 8:00am and jetted off to Surprise Beach. Of course this was where our Disney Cruise awaited us but the boys had no idea. Unfortunately diarrhea struck me not once but TWICE and after an impromptu side trip to a cemetery, fire ants, visit to the boy scout camp (I'll write more about that later) we arrived at Surprise Beach.

The boys weren't all that impressed with the beach, which consisted of a few areas where the water met the mud but then we showed them why it was called Surprise Beach:

It took some convincing but finally they believed us. And away we went with Grandpa and Granmda!

Our room had bunk beds, which the boys loved!

Of course we met various cast members. Maysen was "almost" too cool for them, but not quite.

We went over Halloween again this year, the boys were pirates. This is them pounding on Grandma and Grandpa's door so we could go do trick or treats around the ship.

Our main waiter, Kalebo. He was such a wonderful soul.

Dad and Jo were sort of gypsies on their own adventure. That was fine with us. But we needed proof that we were on the same trip together, so above is proof that we did have them with us! Hehe.

Salt water pool in Costa Maya.

Don't worry folks, lid was on.

This was our dinner night at Animator's Palate. Our drawings were taken, downloaded, and collaborated into an actual animation up on the walls in the dining room. It was amazing!

This was Vaz, our assistant waiter. He was very helpful at helping the boys cut up their food and making Mickey Mouse faces out of ketchup.

We visited the Mayan Ruins at Cozumel. The boys stayed on the ship at Kids Club and so just the adults went.

This was the self-serve soft serve on the Disney Island of Castaway Cay. Griffin had learned how to run this machine since they have one on the ship. By now he was a pro :)

All together, minus grandma Jo :( This was our last night.

We did bring back some souveniers for the dogs. We think they like them.

Friday, July 26, 2013

If only I was missing some teeth.

Last summer I got on a kick of painting. I had painted accent walls in both my bedroom and my bathroom. I needed one more room to paint, or so I thought, so I proceeded to paint the kitchen back splash wall. I was almost done - finishing up in fact one weekday morning. I was fighting the boys to stay out of my hair while I got it finished. I was losing the battle quickly and then I thought of it:

Redbox. Movie. 2hrs of peace and quiet.

Unfortunately we don't have a Redbox in our small town, but we do 10mi away. I figured we'd grab drive through and a movie and head home and I'd for sure get this painting done. Since I woke up and just started painting, let me give you the visual:

I had "sleep" still all over - my face, my hair, hairy armpits and legs, no brushed teeth, hair astray. the boys were lucky to have Cheerios thrown at them while I painted, so yes, as we set out on this adventure they were still also covered in sleep and still in PJs at 11:30am. I was wearing paint covered tank top (that, admittedly was a bit too small, so who knows how much belly was showing), holey capris, no bra.

"Can we take the dogs? Pllllllllllllllleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaasssssssseeeeeeeeeee?"

Hey, you pick your battles, right? Maybe they were sensing my weakness, but they asked at the right time and won. The dogs were going.

I reserved a movie ahead of time so the time I was out of the Tahoe and actually in public view was very limited. We got to Walgreens and of course EVERYONE had to get out. Everyone but the dogs. Panicking that I'd run into someone I knew, I was trying to speed the process up. Finally ... movie in hand, "GET IN THE CAR!" to the boys, and I stepped off the curb.

Greeting me at the window were the ever-so-happy-dogs. So happy, in fact, that Willy had jumped up onto the window console waiting for our return.

As I reached for the door handle, I heard the worst sound of my life.


Yes indeed. Willy had inadvertently locked the Tahoe doors with one mistaken paw. With panic I looked around to the side. Surely the boys made it first before he locked it..


You've got to be kidding me. The Tahoe at this point was still running. My cell phone was inside as well. On star! Maybe my On Star still works! But that meant we had to go ....... INSIDE WALGREENS. No shoes. No bra. Pajamas. Paint. Sleep everywhere. Stink. Goood Lord.

I was directed to the back where the photo center is and the woman behind the counter is dialing the numbers for me. So just as she's dialed OnStar for me, I'm having to interrupt her to type in the prompts. "Excuse me, can you dial 1?" .... "Now 2; woops, now I have to start over can you redial?" You get the picture.

Meanwhile the kids are going crazy. they've found the pit of gigantic 4ft bouncy balls and are bouncing them isle to isle. Bread is being knocked onto the ground and between my "push 1, please" I'm yelling "Put that down ... (damnit) .... Hi ... can you hold just a sec ... I SAID TO STOP THAT NOOWWW!" People are starting to glance around and notice me and my dirty-feet children.

My OnStar ran out 5 days before the incident. FIVE DAYS. And if that wasn't enough, because I said there were dogs in the car, they transferred me to the police department. Yes, that mean they're sending out Sexy Sgt Shaffer to help me with this crisis.

A wine bottle shatters, the blue ball bounces up into the air.

GET OVER HERE NOW! I'm surprised the arm didn't come completely detached from the child as I placed them on the ground at my feet.

On a hunch I ask Maysen to go back outside and see if willy has unlocked any of the doors. He runs full speed out the store like a thief with a stolen candy bar.

I'm hoping he comes back with a smile on his face. But alas he comes in, there is no smile.

"Nope. Still locked...........................(and just as I deep sigh and lose all hope I hear it) ...... but there's a window down now."


Down goes the phone and I run out of the store with both homeless-looking boys behind me. Sure enough willy had rolled down the back window.

"Ouch!" yells Maysen as I lift him up and cram him into the 6" opening.

"Oh, you're getting in there ....squeeeeze!"

the lady beside our car is snickering. Lady you have no idea. Never again, folks. Never again.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Summer Un-Birthday 2013

Last year we started doing a Summer Un-Birthday party for both the boys. It was brilliant. Since both boys have winter birthdays, they were getting tired of having the same old chuck-e-cheese party, or inside water park party. This way we get both birthday parties out of the way for the whole year ... Boom! Last year we rented a bounce house, had 2 sleep overs, and water fights. This year, since we got a new pool, we had a pool party. We played messy games (whipped cream musical chairs and "hunt for the gummy bear with your face" cream pies"). We had two pinatas, which we initially we were going to seperate the boys into their groups of friends. Both boys had a great number of friends and cousins turn out for the party, which was great but it made for a wild time. So wild, we ditched the segregated groups and just let everyone play as one big group hitting 2 pinatas.

The boys got some science experiement gifts and guess what we did all day the following day? THIS! Maysen has been so into science lately. His mind is so intricuit. He wants to know how things work and why they work. He can sit with Nate and geek out to "How it's Made" on TV for hours. Griffin just wants to be doing what big brother is doing. It gets on Maysen's nerves a great deal but I do hear him (between the yells) giving him instruction on what to do.

Griffin is really coming into his own lately. He is still very much a cuddly mommy's boy but is becoming rowdy and wild. Maysen was at Grandma's house last week and Griffin ate up every minute of one-on-one he could get. He is a good listener and most of the time won't argue when asked to do something (too much). Maysen is my debater. He will negotiate until he's blue in the face to try and get out of something. It drives me nuts, but you gotta love his persistance.

We are 2nd month into summer now and that attitudes are nuts. Maysen always has a bit of an attitude these days. He's very negative. As told by Sherrill on their last vacation with her "Maysen what a beautiful blue sky!" .... "It's not all blue -- look! There are white clouds up there too!". He always has to run his mouth and it never stops. I'm trying not to kill him and remember that this probably is my genes taking over. I know what a strong, determined, strong-willed person I became and know there is some pay off when he becomes an adult but it's painful getting there!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The time is 10:03 and I know this because I wonder why the house is so quiet on a Sunday morning. The night before, the boys had chosen to sleep in "Grandma Lynnie's room" (aka: spare room) so I knew when the sun came up they'd be awake. Regardless, I get up, go to the toilet, as I hear feet approaching.

And there he stood. Griffin, the ghost. He was not dressed in the PJs he had so excitedly put on the night before (Mario Brothers). Instead he donned footie winter jammies. Before I had a chance to speak, the ghost spoke.

"I puked in Gramma Lynnie's bed cause I wasn't feeling very well. Also, I farted in my Mario jammies .... (starts to cry) but it was a poooooooop bommmmmb."

The next 18hrs was filled with puking, dry heaving, napping, more puke. Poor little pale-as-a-ghost Griffin. I'm happy to report he's much better and went back to school today.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Today we lost our precious Bailey this morning very unexpectedly. She fought with Addison's Disease for just over 7 years but was feisty and tried to keep up with our other babies every day. Nate and I brought Bailey into our lives in June 2002 when we had moved onto Fort Riley post housing. Kresta and Ryan, neighbors, had a Bassett and we thought they were such great dogs. It wasn't a week after we moved on post, we had ourselves a baby basset hound named Bailey.

When Nate deployed to Iraq during the war, she was my rock. She knew when something was wrong, she knew when I needed her and she was always there. Although she had seperation anxiety when we'd leave, she would absolutely destroy the house while we were gone, barking and howling to the point of being hoarse. I remember specifically one story when Nate was gone to war and she and I were on a super long walk. It was a 7-mile walk along the river and I'd forgotten her water bowl back at the car. I kept encouraging her to keep going and she was slowing. Because she enjoyed the no-traffic along the path, she wasn't kept on a leash but she bee-bopped along side me. That is, until I noticed she wasn't. I panicked. I cried. Here was the one person I had left since Nate had left in a scary way and she was gone. No where to be found. Do I call and have people come to me? Do I try and leave...but what if she comes back? I started running and all of a sudden I hear jingling. Bay's jingling. She had gotten hot and detoured down to the river, took a swim, drank, and was making her way back to Momma! I had never been so happy!

She has lived a relatively illness-free life until she was about 6yrs old. She was diagnosed with Addison's Disease. Everyone was so worried about her, but Maysen was a baby and so careful with her. She was gentle with him too, and we would often find her laying in his nursery in front of his (and later Griffins) cribs. Just laying, almost watching and making sure everything was OK.

She hated fireworks. We would have to drug her. Her first experience of fireworks was on the boat. We had went to Cedar Bluff lake with my dad and Jo and they thought it would be a great idea to take her out onto the water while we watched fireworks. No go. She ran around the whole boat .... pee'ing everywhere .... and I'm running around after her with a blanket trying to cover her face (like you would a frickin' horse!) trying to calm her down. Since then it was not happening. In fact, when she was about 8yr old she was in our backyard while we went to purchase some fireworks. When we came home our neighbor told us that someone behind our house started lighting off fireworks. Before she knew it, all she sees is Bailey BOOKING IT down the cul-de-sac with her ears in the "nun-hat" position. She was OUTTA there. So we go back and look -- she had tore down the whole gate to get out. She was not having that!

When she was a puppy she had terrible seperation anxiety. If we left we had to crate her and if we even tried to leave her out, she would destroy EVERYTHING. We're talking remotes, cell phones, purses, my glasses, my nursing books. We even waited till dark and then left the house so we could see what she did when we left. She went window to window HOWLING looking for us. When she got destructive we came in ... she had it bad. How did we break her? Well .... we moved her "basket (bed)" into the living room. Tunrs out she just needed a place she felt save whereever she was. So if we pulled her basket out into a main room while we were gone, she was fine. Eventually she learned to go climb in it in the bedroom while we were gone. Just like a kid!

We will miss her very much. Nothing could replace her. I still miss her hoofs on my floor. But I know she's up there chasing Birdie. Love you, my girl.