Saturday, July 25, 2009

Jubilee Lake

Stretching for that blossom...

Taking time to smell the clover. Don't know if she could push it any harder into her nose or not.

A pretty behind her ear.
Removing the pretty from behind her ear.
A cool bug seen along the trail.

This afternoon we had the pleasure of an afternoon at Jubilee Lake in the Blue Mountains of Oregon. We met up with friends for a picnic supper. The 2 mile hike was done as a family. Such special times of good conversation, lazily stopping along the way to look at flowers and bugs and nurse my baby. Such a happy relaxing and blessed day. Thanks God!

Jubilee Lake

What a cheesy grin. But oh! such a classic Lucas expression!

Sniffing the Indian paint brush.

My Fierce Little Warrior.

He was protecting us from the lions. Look at his fierce expressions. The weapons were the kind that were really "bad". His "Bone and Arrows." If you listen closely, you'll hear him stomping when he's supposed to be sneaking quietly up on those lions and bears.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I'll take the melon... You take the seeds..

Summers bring mouth watering fruit when you live in the Pacific Northwest. Tis the seasoning for cherries, blueberries, apricots, peaches, and watermelon.
I was enjoying a delicious piece as part of my lunch today. Abrianna sidled over and made it known she was interested in a bite or two to which I obliged her. She made a yucky face and spit it out. To her credit, she DID like it... before she came down with the stomach flu on Sunday.
Okay, I was not going to force her to eat it. She asked for more. More? I pointed to the plate and the piece she'd spit out. She carefully reached down and helped herself to a seed. Then another and another as if to say... "you take the melon and I'll take the seeds, momma."

USB devise not recognized

I'm seated in front of my computer, Josephine on my lap sleepily sucking at her bottle- not quite sleeping long enough to lay her down.
Abrianna is at my feet, alternating between shoving a book at me insisting "brrhhm brrhhm (book book) and tugging at my leg and whimpering "uhhh uhh" (up up) or pulling my hand from the mouse to try to get my attention.
Finally,giving up, she seats herself beside me, finding something to entertain herself. She's quiet.
The computer begins to open up a pop up window every several seconds with the following error message "USB device not recognized. One of the USB devices attached to this computer has malfunctioned, and windows does not recognize it."
Not a strange error message. It throws that error sometimes when I'm uploading the pictures from my camera. Kind of strange though for it to being throwing it randomly and repeatedly.
I glance down. There sits Abrianna with the USB cable from the camera, one end plugged into the computer, the other end in her MOUTH! Yikes! Apparently you can't be shocked from doing that- thankfully.
It appears that my computer refuses to recognize my daughter. I suppose I can be grateful for that.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Pickin' Flowers

Carefully selecting the flower

Almost there...
A pretty in her ear.

I think the females love of beauty starts at an early age. For months, Abrianna has shown her love for beauty; picking flowers, pretty headbands on her head, etc.
One time I put a flower behind her ear. Ever since then she'll studiously pick flowers and try to put them BEHIND her ear. Their final resting place is IN her ear. So precious.

Flowers in my... ear??

For Grandma Melody

Friday, July 17, 2009

Little things

Do you know when you've spent too much time at the computer?? It's when your adorable 15 month old toddler with the broken arm reaches up and repeatedly pulls your hand off the mouse to get your attention. Sweet and Sad.
I need to treasure the here and now instead of wishing to have more intellectual stimulation via my online friends. Actually, come to think of it, instant messaging doesn't stimulate my brain that much. It's the social interaction I crave.
Other new things this week. When I'm nursing, singing, and rocking Abrianna to sleep, she'll reach up her small hand and either ask or tell me all the parts of my face, including cheeks and chin, teeth and tongue.
When I sing to her, she'll try to sing along. Its so sweet. The sweetness gets lost in the longness though. When it takes up to 45 minutes for her to settle down and go to sleep, I get frustrated.

I'm considering training her to stay put when I lay her down. The idea being that she'll learn to go to sleep on her own when the need arises. I think that would be an important step before having another little one of my own.
When we're in Minnesota in a couple of weeks would be the ideal time. I won't have the responsibility of Josephine. No interruptions. We'll see...
I'll try to remember to update you on that process as we progress.
Happy Sabbath!

A great rocking horse

See, I can still clasp my hands!

Hi Momma!

Abrianna discovered that a watermelon makes a good rocking horse or rocking chair. It was It was difficult to get a clear shot with the rocking. Guess the watermelon isn't really that visible.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Brutal Honesty and Fat Tummies

One of the greatest assets and one of the largest liabilities is honesty. Brutal, direct honesty.

I've heard other moms talk about their little ones saying true but embarrassing things. Lucas has done that a time or two. Today, I was the recipient.

I caught him on the floor hacking away at the chubby belly of a baby doll. When I asked what he was doing he told me was trying to cut off its fat tummy. "Why is his tummy fat?" he queried.
"Well, babies are supposed to have fat tummies." So through the family we went categorizing fat of skinny. Lucas' tummy was skinny, daddy's tummy was skinny, Abrianna's was fat. "That's right, because she's a baby." I agreed.

I should have known better than to ask, but something sick within me prompted me to see how I was categorized- don't ever do this when you have a roll protruding from beneath your shirt which your 15 month old pulled up trying to get at some 'nursers.' "Your tummy is fat. Mommies and baby all have fat tummies!"

Uh oh! I've known for awhile that I needed to lay off the sweets. My stomach is simply sloppy and pudgy not protruding per say. I was careful with what I ate the remainder of the day. No dessert!
I can't wait till I have peeled of a couple of pounds of pudge from my waist line!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Abrianna's arm

I woke at a quarter to 6:00 this morning, eagerly anticipating 8:00 and the opening of Dr. Hutson's orthopedic clinic.
I know the hour was early. Maybe some of the rest of you can understand, when you have a deadline, sleep can evade you.
I snuck out of bed and began my day. Cleaned off my table and counters, took a shower, unloaded the dishwasher.
Lucas awoke ( he'd climbed into my bed in the wee hours of the morning). He'd somehow wet my bed with his diaper on. Don't know how, but oh well.
About 7:00 I called Dr. Hutson's office. They called back within 45 minutes and Abrianna was scheduled to see him at 12:30.
This morning was coolish. Upon Josephine's arrival we all went on a 2 mile walk to the golf course and back. Lucas laid down for a rest when we got back. Jojo fell asleep while feeding. Abrianna attempted to "help" with the feeding intermittently riding my foot and shoving a book on to my lap exclaiming, brrrmmm brmmm, translation , book book.
Laid Jojo down and read to her for awhile. Made arrangements to drop Jojo off with her mommy at the bank. Tiffany offered to take Lucas.
Tim and Laura with their boys came over for about an hour in there to try out our new trampoline. Lucas loved jumping with Peter. Abrianna was frustrated and couldn't understand why she wasn't allowed to jump too. Poor girl.
We hit the road about 11:50 only 5 minutes behind schedule. Lucas was dropped off at Jaden's house, Jojo at the bank, and we made it to the appointment with 5-10 minutes to spare.
I amazed at how much paper work being a new patient can entail. I think I filled out 4-5 sheets of paper with 3-4 of them double sided. I had to guess at the answers on some. Abrianna doesn't communicate well enough to tell if the pain is constant and what seems to help.
When we were in ER on Friday, Dr. Underhill told me that her break was fairly minor and that he thought a splint would be better than a cast. Dr. Hutson reiterated the same info. He said she should wear until it didn't hurt 3-4 weeks.
He said that with little people, their arms are so pudgy that they can and do pull off permanent cast. If she pulls of the splint ( which she has several times) I can always put it back on. The splint is also easier for bathing or swimming.
By the time I'd picked up Lucas and made it back home the clock read 2:15. Jojo's mommy opted to keep her for the remainder of the day.
A blessing as my early rising was beginning to catch up with me.
Did a massage and the other normal things of being a wife and mommy and housekeeper.
Such was my day. I'm going to end it now by retiring early 9:08.
Good night all.

Prayers and Nemo

Last week during a massage, my babysitter put on what she thought was a kid friendly movie, Pixar's Finding Nemo.I suppose it is to a child slightly than my 3 year old Lucas.
At the beginning of the movie, two clown fish, Marlin and his "wife" are admiring their eggs, when a shark comes and eats the mommy and all but one of the eggs. Disturbing when you think about it.
During prayer this evening Lucas prayed, "Dear Jesus, please make the shark spit out the mommy and baby fishes. Amen!"
Then he went on to explain how Jesus was going to reach down the shark's throat and take the fish out of his stomach.
Another example, he prayed that Jesus would make Chick Hicks from Pixar's Cars movie kind. The character was a jerk.
The faith of a child is a wondrous thing. How do you or do you even need to explain that movie characters aren't going to change simply by praying about it? They aren't real.
Real isn't understood till they're older. I certainly don't want to hamper his faith. So at this point I just smile and say, "really!" to his sweet prayers.

Sunday, July 12, 2009


"Lucas," I called. "I not Lukiss! I don't Kiss people!" he replied.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Who's in the boat??

Abrianna and Levi

Lucas, Jaden, Abrianna, and Levi
Scrub a dub dub, three little men in a tub.

The new program in our combined Cradle Roll 1 and 2 is the woods. These are the canoes. They even will rock forwards and backwards a bit. After Sabbath school this morning the little munchkins decided they needed to play in them
Thank you Shana for taking these pictures and sharing them with me.

The promised pictures

Look at those poor little swollen fingers.

She does use it some, or tries to I suppose.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Friday night

Friday nights... Friends, fellowship, tacos, trip to ER. Wait! Trip to ER??
Yes, that's the way we prepared for Sabbath this week.
We were invited to a friends house for tacos. I was just preparing to slip a pan of homemade brownies into the oven, while Abrianna peered through the oven door from a two- stepped step. Suddenly.... a thump followed by a loud wail- an "I'm really hurt " type of wail.
"Kyle, I gotta go!" I blurted, slamming the phone shut and swooping my wailing baby off of the floor.
Due to the poor connection, he called right back thinking that we'd been disconnected. Nope! I told him I had to go again and hung up.

She was pasty and taking turns holding her left arm with her right hand and moving her left arm around like it wasn't comfortable. What to do? Call Rick to have a look. Emerging from the computer room, he poked it and firmly declared it just fine. After all, broken bones would cause loud hysterical crying.
I wasn't convinced. My little brother broke his leg at about the same age and the way she was acting reminded me of that.
So, I called Dr. Wren at home. He wasn't there yet. Cheryl offered to page him for me. During the interim, I did some assessing. Her elbow was fine.The wrist moved okay. But she was guarding it. When laid down, she used her hands to try to push herself up, this brought a fresh onslaught of tears and cradling of her wrist.
Okay, we're going to go to ER! "Please tell Dr. Wren that I decided to take her in!" I called to Rick as I started to gathering things and heading for the door.
The phone rang. Yes, I should take her in to the ER, agreed Dr. Wren on the phone.
Setting the booster next to the Yaris, I loaded Abrianna into the van and headed to the hospital.
She had long since ceased to cry.
Sheepishly standing in line at the emergency room with an apparently normal 14 month old, I wondered if I'd made the right call. Oh well, better to be safe than sorry, right?
Maybe 20 minutes after arrival Dr. Underhill came into the room. Asking several questions, including whether she'd had any Tylenol, he ordered x-rays. Thinking for a few minutes, I realized she had had Tylenol an hour and a half prior to her fall. In retrospect,I believe this was helping mask the pain.
Abrianna had been happily toddling about to this point. This changed when we made our way into the x-ray room with the tech. Setting her on the table, she reacted by flipping out, totally losing all control, frantically clutching at me, while crying hysterically.
We did the x-rays with her sitting on my lap and me holding her arm still. We had to do two sets because her bones are so thick! ( yeah for the Anderson blood!)
The x-ray tech couldn't tell me the results as it's "out of his scope of practise" but let me look. I thought I saw a line. The tech told me that I had good eyes but that Dr. Underhill would give me the results.
Sure enough, "Good job, mom!" was what the Dr. said. There were two green stick fractures, one on the radius and the other on the ulna, thankfully below the growth plate.
For now she has a splint and an ace bandage.
We're going to make an appointment with Dr. Hudson, an orthopedist in town, on Monday.
We'll see what happens with a real cast.
I talked to Lucas very sternly about not touching or pulling on either arm. He's listened very well and we've avoided further injury thus far.
I'll try to get some pictures tomorrow. She's peacefully sleeping now.
Happy Sabbath.

That hurts my nose

A stomach churning experience changing Jojo's diapers- solids tend to drastically increase the odoriferousness of any baby's diaper.
I hurried through the process and wrapped it up. "Lucas come and through that away for me!" With a look of disdain followed by a cry, he ran across the room. " That hurts my nose!"
Sister to the rescue. She scooped up the diaper voluntarily, toddling off in search of the trash can. Lucas gladly helped guide her to the appropriate place in order to avoid doing the unpleasant task.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Bump bump wiggle bump

As I hurried out the door to dump the trash, a bit of green caught my eye. There on the concrete was a little caterpillar. "Lucas! Come quick! There's caterpillar out here." I exclaimed. Out the door he tore, dropping to his knees, placing his finger in front of the caterpillar. Up onto his finger it inched. Frankly, I was surprised. Sometimes he seems a bit afraid of bugs. Not this time.

A closer view.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Cool Summer Fun part 2

Lucas drinking water off the tramp while Abrianna peeks through the netting. Momma looks on smiling at the happy brood.

Synchronized jumping. is that anything close to synchronized swimming when it's done with water on a hot summer day?

Daddy practicing his Ninja moves. Look at the height he has under him there.

Fourth of July was wickedly hot- about 100 I think. Rick had the brilliant idea of a sprinkler under the tramp for some cool family fun. As you can see, we had a blast. Topped the day off with a picnic supper of hot dogs and smoothies in the backyard and our own mortar firework display in the front yard. Lots of fun!

Cool Summer Fun part 1

Wearin' the pants

He insisted he needed to wear daddy's pants. The boy has a bit of growin' still to do.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

A rough week

I'm learning to LEAN more and more on God. I know this week I've needed to grow more patience.
Or maybe I just need to get away for awhile- even a half an hour to myself would be blissful.
Maybe I'm attempting too much. Maybe I'm too distracted. Whatever the reasons, it's been a hard week.
To give you a bit of background... Rick started a new job three weeks ago ( Thank GOD!). He leaves at 5:45 AM and returns at 5:45 PM, Monday-Thursday with every other Friday off.

He's been trying to study for his second actuarial exam and also is studying about the stock market and how to spot "good" investments. In other words, he doesn't take much time to help out and I feel badly even asking. But I think I'm almost at the breaking point. I HAVE to have a break SOON!!!

You probably remember that, I care for Josephine - almost 5 months- from 8:00 AM-5:00 PM, 5 days a week. Her mommy tries to come and feed her once during the day. Alas, it's been a crazy week for Doreen too and she's only been out twice ( Thursday and Friday) to feed her this week.
So, I'm the lone ranger all day with three kids ages 3 and under.

Some of the "highlights" of the week are as follows.
Tuesday Lucas requested we walk to the park, about a half a mile and five road crossings away. I pushed the girls in the stroller and he rode his "motorcycle."

He has always been really good about listening and obeying while out riding. Pretty responsible.

The trip to the park was uneventful. On the return he coasted down a small hill and onto the sidewalk and crossed the first street BY HIMSELF!!! He'd gotten far enough ahead. he didn't hear me hollering at him to STOP!
I scolded him and kept him close by for the remainder of the crossings.He needed his little hide tanned but I refrained do to our location.
I asked him if he knew what he'd done wrong. He said he'd crossed the road. So obviously he wasn't oblivious to the disobedient aspect, just the danger.
Wednesday Rick woke me at 5:00 AM upon my request. Lampson's You Pick Blueberries was open. Hurrah! Last summer I didn't get any berries. I was not going to let having the responsibility of three little ones deter me this year.
I packed my two into the car and headed out. We picked up Josephine and were on the road to Milton-Freewater by 6:15. I was glad to have an early start. Upon arrival I was even happier to have gotten there early. There were a large number of people swarming through the rows intent on stripping the bushes of the luscious fruit.
Loading both girls, and anything else I thought we might need, into the stroller we made our way towards the cashier to be directed to "our" row, at the end near the road. The bushes sagged under their burden of berries so thick they looked like clusters of ripe concord grapes hanging to the ground.
The first part went quite quickly. Lucas kept himself and Abrianna well occupied eating fruit while Jojo just observed. Then Jojo decided she'd had enough of the stroller and was bored. Holding her in one arm I continued to pick. Then she decided she was hungry. So the stroller became my seat so I could feed her and continue to fill the bucket.
About that time a middle-aged man came up to me and asked how many berries I was planning on picking. "Two buckets." I replied. He handed me a full bucket of berries. I was so relieved!

Lucas informed me at that point that a bathroom break was immanent. Taking a girl in each arm and verbally directing him we made our way to the porta potty. He hasn't learned how to wipe yet so that took a little creativity to keep Abrianna off of the dirt road where the cars continued to file past while getting Lucas cleaned up. We did manage. That process took probably 15 minutes.
Back to our row to finish picking berries. The same gentleman came over again and repeated his question. I replied, "I want to top off my buckets." He took his bucket of berries and filled both of mine to the top. Praise the LORD! I was so ready to be done.
After paying, loading everything into the van, and feeding Jojo we were headed back to Wally World ( Walla Walla) by 8:30.
We stopped at Wal-mart to pick up some freezer bags for our bounty of 24 lbs of organic blueberries. Both girls were asleep. Josephine rode in her car seat, Lucas in the cart and Abrianna over my shoulder.
Upon arriving home, I felt that I still needed a walk. The trip to and from the van wouldn't be recognized by my body as exercise- though I swear mentally I'd run a marathon by that point.
After resting for awhile, we headed out. The walk was almost uneventful, until we got to crossing our blind corner. Jasper ( our German Shepherd) ran across without permission. Lucas proceed to make an arcing curve out into the road and back. I was scared to death.
Since we were headed into the house, he did get his hide tanned. I really needed to make more of an impression. This is an issue of life or death. (Any of you who have been to my house would understand that.)
I got down on his level and put into graphic terms what could happen to him if he got run over by a car. I made my point. He had a terribly scared expression on his face and then burst into tears. I pray that that is the last time he'll pull that stunt.
Later, Josephine was sleeping in the stroller. Lucas wanting something out of the pocket on the handle and tipped the stroller over. Fortunately the way it's designed, she didn't fall out. Just ended up upside down. I wasn't a happy momma.
That was the end of Wednesday.
Thursday.... Playgroup to be held at my house. That is always a good motivator to clean, both inside and out.
On a side note, I was planning on mowing the lawn Tuesday. But Abrianna was playing with and lost one of my closed toed shoes. The lawn was and is un-mown. I think it hasn't seen a mower in two weeks!

I did get a bit of trash picked up outside. The house was fairly clean inside. (I forgot to mention that on Wednesday all three little ones napped for an hour simultaneously. I vacuumed, swept and mopped.)

I waded through a huge mountain of dishes, loading the dishwasher to capacity and hand washing the rest, stacking them on the counter to dry. Awhile later, I heard Lucas saying, "Uh oh!" There he was, standing on the counter, pee puddling under him and running UNDER MY CLEAN DISHES! YUCKY!!

I was sitting in the glider rocking chair encouraging Jojo to journey to the land of nod, while Abrianna ran laps on the couch. Suddenly, I head a thunk followed by a wail! She had flipped head over heals over the back of the couch into the wood pile. With my heart in my throat and expecting the worst, I quickly laid Josephine on the couch hurrying to pick up my battered daughter. Surprisingly and thankfully, she wasn't that battered. She sustains a small dent but no visible bruises or blood for which I remain very grateful.

Rachel and her girls came for playgroup.
Our kids had a lot of fun running and bouncing on the trampoline.
Abrianna ever a little monkey, scaled the ladder when I wasn't watching. The next thing I see, is grinning and merrily running laps 40 inches above the ground on the corner of the tramp outside the net!!
Rick later told me that she can climb all the way up the ladder and through the enclosure onto the trampoline. The ladder has been removed.
Friday mostly restful, thankfully.
Jojo's daddy worked a half a day and picked her up at 1:00. For which I'm especially grateful because Abrianna began running a fever about a quarter after 12:00.
Her fever reached about 103 during the night. Tylenol brought it down. She's been a little cranky today and is again running a slight fever, wanting to cuddle and nurse frequently.,

Sabbath, my ramblings have come to a close. I've been much better handle things today thanks to some help and a short nap. Happy Sabbath and Happy 4th of July!