Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Funny Toddler Quote #1: Wacky

I was at my computer, reading blogs, chuckling at a certain blog post. Harris was sleeping in the hotel room bed next to us... or so we thought...

Me to Mindi: I like her writing style but I am not sure you would care for it, it is kindof whacky.
Mindi to Me: Yeh, you are right, I don't really like whacky.

Harris: I don't like whacky either... it could hurt someone...

Friday, December 17, 2010

Pummelvision

This has to be the coolest thing I have stumbled on in a long time. Do you have a flicker or similar account? Do you have a buttload of photos that pretty much just sit there because you don't quite have the time to look through them all? Go to pummelvision.com and make one of these. This video consists of over 2,000 photos, and does not get boring! Amazing!!! Check it out! And, If you make one (which requires a total of 3 mouse clicks from you, link to it in the comments- I would love to see!


My Pummelvision from Lynn L on Vimeo.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Playing Catch Up

I have been seriously neglecting my blog! I have to say, however, that I am not going to sit here and apologize to everyone (except myself)... It is MY JOURNAL after all... I will have only myself to blame for not having a record of the last month of my life! So, most importantly (to me) Stella is talking and signing up a storm. Ball, cheese, aaaaaaall dooooooone (I have to catch that one on video), along with the ones that I mentioned before, such as mommy, Ima, Harris, Ice Cream, and more. Preparations are being made for the next attempt at getting pregnant, and the subsequent child it could produce. The preparations are mainly physical possession type of things like trading in our Jeep for a more roomy family car- a new-to-us Honda Odyssey! We are both super excited about our 2005 Blue mini van- it is one sweet ride, let me tell you! Also, since we are a crib-free family, I finally just sold our crib via craigslist. After deciding that it was time to reclaim our mama bed, we purchased Stella her own big girl bed- the same full sized mattress from IKEA that we got for Harris back in the day. Wouldn't you know it, not more than 2 weeks after we purchased her bed, we decided to have another baby, and so we recently took advantage of Ikea's great mattress return policy, and picked up a twin size instead, looking to the future of shared bedrooms. She seems to like her new smaller mattress even better than the big one. She looks adorable in it as well. Speaking of cute little baby people, it never ceases to amaze me what a good sleeper she is. And so predictable too. It is 9:55 and I don't hear my baby. I know she crawled out of the room a minute ago, so I quietly tiptoe down the hall towards her room. Sure enough, she has opened her door, crawled into her bed, put her head on her pillow, and went to sleep. H.o.l.y S.H.I.T. A baby that puts herself down to nap. I love it.

Fast forward 1 hour- she is awake and happy, playing quietly in her room. by herself. While I blog. Next she will be changing her own diapers... or better yet, using the toilet...

We have our first snow here in Seattle. Driving Harris to school this morning was nothing short of amusing. People in Seattle can't drive in the snow, and being from Chicago, I used to think that they just didn't know how to control their cars in the snow. Now I realize that I was right- they don't know how, but also, the city really doesn't have a lot of salt/sand trucks and snow plows, and there are a lot of hills, so one really does have to be careful! I did fine, even in my big ol' mama mobile!

Hmmm what else... It was inside out day at school today. I thought I would do something different than simply turning Harris' clothes inside out, and instead, put his "insides on the outside"!

Alright folks, that is all for now, I am over and out! I will try not to be a stranger so much!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Word to your Mama(s)

Isn't it the way... Being a second child, and noticing that there are significantly less pictures, fewer movies, and fewer entries in my baby book from my childhood. I always swore that I would give my second child as many of those special little tidbits for their memory boxes as I gave my first.

Fast forward 15 years. Did it happen? Nope. Is my second child going to hate me forever because I didn't live up to my promise? Mmmmm doubtful. Of course, I would have said, flat out, NO, she won't be upset, but she is turning into a bitty drama queen, so only time will tell...

So, here is an update about our little lady Stella! She was slow to crawl, and didn't figure out the motion until she was about 9.5 months. I was fine with it, but she was soooo frustrated! Luckily, *poof* one day she was crawling. She is slowly getting faster, but I am in no hurry to have an extremely mobile baby. It seems as though she was busy working on other things though. She wants to talk! She actually has 5 distinct words now!
Mama or Mum mum if she is crying= Mommy (Mindi)
Na Na or Nya Nya= Ima (Me)
Ma= more
HaHa = Harris
I Da= ice cream

I love the fact that ice cream was in her first 3. She is a smart girl- she knows what she wants! 

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Are We Really Having This Conversation???

So, Mindi and I just wrapped up, or are in the process of wrapping up THE CONVERSATION. Which conversation would this be? Well, the one we thought we wouldn't have. You know, the one about baby 3.0...

Did we really just have that conversation? Why yes, yes we did...

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Paralysis

Typically, I am a decorating fiend. I really enjoy the whole "making a house a home" concept. I love to warm up the walls with art that inspires me and makes me think, warm linens, candles, colorful curtains, you know, feel good stuff. I love feeling at home in a room. All of the places that I have lived have gotten this special treatment. My old bedroom growing up, apartments 1, 2, 3, and 4, and, of course, house number 1. But house number 2 is different. Sooooo different. We have lived here for almost one full year as of Oct 17th, and there is not 1 piece of artwork on the walls, outside of the bathroom renovation. The curtains in our bedroom were thrown up without much thought because we were unable to stomach the draperies that were there. My office, the huge room fully equipped with cabinets and counters and permanent power strips galore, perfect for a crafter, remains a jumbled catch all for crap that has no home. Our garage looks like someone puked a storage cubicle all over it. The living room is a sorry mishmash of ugly carpeting, bare windows, and a sad attempt at a fireplace vignette involving bland looking driftwood, an old metal laundry basket, and twinkle lights. Sigh. I just couldn't get over the hump. Then I realized what had happened. All it took was a brief conversation with a good friend that spurred the word from my lips PARALYSIS. I went on to vocalize what I couldn't figure out before. I was so bent on making things perfect the first time, that I was physically unable to take a single step. So why was it so different this time? Well, first of all, it is the house. You know, I mean THE HOUSE. As in, this house is meant to be the 30 year house, if you will. All of the apartments in the past, along with house #1 were, in my mind, temporary. It didn't matter if I flubbed the art arrangement, or botched a paint job. It would all be coming down in 1-3 years anyways. Worst case scenario, I patch a couple holes and move out. But this house, being THE HOUSE is different. I would be forced to recall every blooper I made. That, coupled with the fact that I occasionally find it difficult to feel ownership of this house to begin with because of a major snafu that occurred during the purchase of it... I digress.

So, why am I going on and on about it? Well, I feel that I have had a breakthrough! I realize that I just have to DO SOMETHING to get the ball rolling. Anything would be better than nothing, and hey, if I use stuff that I have, even if it isn't perfect, I can always change it later to make it the perfect room, and in the meantime, it will feel homey and inviting! So, where did I start?? Weeeeell...

First off, I searched my favorites for some free printable art. I printed a bunch and simply carried them around to different rooms. Some worked, some didn't, but it was a start, and damn did it feel good! Then, I rearranged our media room a bit. I spend a lot of time in that room in the evenings, and oftentimes have my laptop on. I was tired of having all my shit laying all over the couch- you know, computer, mouse, headphones, cords, etc, and it was a pain for Mindi also, if she wanted to sit down to watch the tv. I moved a few pieces out, moved a few other pieces in, and viola! I now have a little desk of my own in the media room! Then I decided to raid my fabric stash and found some cute curtains that I had hanging at the old house. I had never pictured the pattern in my living room, but I decided to put them up anyways, and let me tell you, it it waaaaaay better than the nothing that was there before! At least they soften the edges of the big window, and are allowing me to think outside of my rut for the rest of the room. Yeeehaaaw!

I would have taken pictures of all of these little changes, but go figure, I can't find my camera. I will leave you, however, with a sweet picture of Stella during yesterday's Seattle Tilth Harvest Festival. Here she is wearing a dainty little herb crown, and what an angel she was! 

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Summer's End

So, summer is almost over. Now, I use the term summer very lightly, because Seattle had about 2 weeks worth of real Summer-like weather, but whatevs... We certainly have been busy little bees. After getting home from our cruise in June, we paid our first visit with the kids to the Chuck E Cheese for the birthday party of one of Harris' friends. It was quite an experience for Harris it seemed, as he screamed bloody murder when the animitronic animals blinked and moved for the first time. Man, he was not expecting that- I was surprised that there was no turd in his pants after that episode...

After that, we experienced our first Sno Cone

Our first big- girl hat

Our first home-made mini popsicle

Fun at the wading pool with Friends


 More Popsicles

Our first veggie garden

More homemade Popsicles
(yogurt and mini popsicle sticks in a silicon ice cube tray are the most perfect 15 calorie treats ever!)

Pretty Broccoli Leaves

OMG- A $9.00 gallon of milk! What a deal!

Bath time fun in the new bathroom

Choo choo train rides

First rides in a car-cart, with big brother showing her how it's done

More homemade Popsicles

First Pie- eating contest



LOST!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Do you Love your Vacuum?

I want to hear about it! We are ready to spend more than $70 on a vacuum. We have actually really liked the last 2 vacuums that we have owned, besides the fact that they both only lasted about 2 years... The first on was the Eureka Optima 431BX . She was a dandy little vacuum. Cute, witty, nice curves, but after a short amount of time she sucked at, well, sucking, until one day she said "screw this, I am done", and just stopped working like the ho that she was. We were saddened by the sudden breakup, and decided to dish out a little more dough for her higher class sister model- the red diva Optima 437AZ! We figured that she would be a better sucker, what, with her snazzy Power paw with Risor Visor attachment (aka. useless stair attachment- besides, what the hell kind of name is a Power Paw anyway?). She did her sassy vacuum thang for about 2 years (or less) as well, until finally, she too, decided to suddenly call it quits. Now, like I said, I really did like many many things about these 2 vacuums- they had powerful 12AMP motors, and were very lightweight- perfect if you have to carry it up stairs. I also really liked the fact that they were bagless, and the second one had a HEPA filter. Despite all of this, I realized that it would be silly of me to buy basically the same vacuum for a 3rd time. I also realize that it is time for me to commit to a good quality vacuum that I will have for hopefully, I dunno, 7 years or more!

Have a Vac you love? Tell me about it! I am open to suggestions, and I do not have any serious requirements. But, FYI, I do have a flight of stairs to consider, and both Mindi and I are only 5'3" tall!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

What a Month! Part 2

6/5/10 Sooooo... we get on the ship and drop off some stuff at the room. We are hastily shuffled towards the buffet restaurant for lunch. The food is great, the staff is AMAZING, and all seems well. For anyone considering cruising, the 2 biggest pleasantries of a cruise vacation are BY FAR the FOOD and the STAFF. Now, one might not think that the staff would have such a huge impact on the cruise experience, but it REALLY DOES. If you are like me, and you like to talk to people, I guarantee that the fleeting thought of "I should totally invite this person to dinner at my house after the cruise is over", may very well go through your head after a few days. You may not linger for long on this thought, but I bet you it will cross your mind...


6/6/10 Today is Mindi's birthday. We try to stay upbeat, but the lingering news of her sister's illness, coupled with the fact that we cannot seem to find a hot vegetarian dish that is not Pasta Primavera is obviously making our vacation a little less carefree. In addition, we realize, to our dismay, that there is absolutely NOTHING for Harris to do on the cruise. There is a children's program, but they will not accept any kid in pull-ups, or under age 3. When I asked them if I could sit in a corner of the children's area and play with him and their toys, they told me that it was not allowed. "Didn't you bring any toys for him to play with" she says, with an innocent look on her face... grrrrrrr... oh, you mean, in between the diapers and formula that required their own duffel? well, noooo, I thought that we might have access here. I didn't even want to leave him there, I just wanted him to have something new to play with. Her only other suggestions were to let him run around on the tennis court, and to take him swimming. 2 problems with that, if the weather was nice, the courts were occupied. If the weather wasn't nice, the weather was NASTY, and, as far as the pool goes, no children were allowed in whilst wearing swim diapers. I buck the system there with a big F U, and take him in the pool WITHOUT a swim diaper... heh heh heh... On a good Samaritan note, I ask him politely to tell me if he has to pee... does he tell me he needs to? No. does he pee in the pool? probably... On a positive note, Harris tries his first chicken leg, and loves it.


6/7/10 Over 48 hours on the ocean, we are going stir crazy. After the quick discovery that this cruise is meant for the "older set", and noting the interesting contrast between "aaaaw, look at the cute little one", vs the evil eye that says "your child is single handedly RUINING my vacation", we are ready to GET OFF THE BOAT. We dock in Juneau, Alaska, and proptly begin our search for our first letterbox. (Even more info about Letterboxing Here). While we don't find the letterbox, we do discover a park! With a swing set! And a slide! Wow, who gets that excited about a park? It reminds me of the time we drove from Chicago to Seattle over the course of 4 days, and after 24 hours of corn fields, we finally spotted a few cows, and nearly pissed ourselves with excitement...





6/8/10 We receive news about Mindi's sister. She has passed away. Long story short, she died at 27 from complications of a gastric bypass (almost 3 years ago), coupled with poor life choices. At this point, the rest of the trip becomes blurry.



6/9/10 We eat our way through another day, and buy a new toy for Harris at port. Which port? I have no idea.



6/10/10 We eat our way through another day



6/11/10 We eat our way through another day

6/12/10 We eat breakfast, then disembark the ship. Our friend Diana picks us all up. We make a quick stop back at the house, and then Diana takes Mindi swiftly to the airport, to hop on a plane to Miami for her sister's funeral.

I was with the 2 kids alone Sat, Sun, Monday, and part of the day Tuesday. It was not a big deal- not too difficult for me to be alone with the kids, so that was good. Mindi and her mom and remaining sister are doing as well as can be expected. It is so sad to think that Feb14th, 2007, Mindi lost her father, David, to cancer, and not more than 3 years later, she lost her younger sister too.

The icing on the cake? We came home to a broken microwave.

And now, a tidbit about cruising with children:

Cruising with kids is AWESOME. I know that some people might be nervous about the whole thing, but once you get on that ship, it is like you are in a town on the sea. There are lots of things to do (assuming you pick the right cruise) and, like I mentioned before, the food is spectacular and plentiful. (I gained 5 lbs in a week). I beg you, however, to really do your homework if you are cruising with children. Some cruise lines are better than others at entertaining families with small children. We cruised with Holland America. Now, I thought that the ship was nice, the food was excellent and the rooms were great, but it was obviously, like I said before, a cruise for the older set. Upon arriving home, I did some research into other cruise lines, and discovered that the 3 best cruises for families with little ones, are Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Disney cruise lines.

If you have had a good experience on a cruise with kids, I would love to hear about it!! In addition, if you have any questions about an upcoming cruise, I am happy to answer it!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

What a Month! Part 1

Wow, folks, it really has been quite a month for us! Let me just give you a quick rundown, and then, if I find I have the energy, I will expound a bit!

I will start a bit further back- into late May, well, just because I can!

5/26/10 I attend an "Edible Landscape" class, held through Seattle Tilth with my veeeeeeery good friend, Kat. I have to say, if any of you live even remotely close to Seattle and have an interest in anything garden, vegetable, plant, worm, chicken, or compost related, check out that website. It is the bomb. There are so many cool classes, and they are inexpensive, and laid back, and fun- not to mention, informative! Now, I have to admit, that going to this class (and an earlier one in April about composting) is a stretch for me. I am a homebody, and although I am very outgoing and people oriented, getting me there to MEET the people is a bit of a challenge. I am proud of myslef for pushing the limits of my comfort zone!

6/2/10 Stella has her final appointment for her Helmet. I opted to leave the helmet at the facility so that they could use it as an example for other parents. Before Stella started her treatment, I was able to see and feel another helmet as an example, but it was for a much older baby, and was, therefore, huge. I felt that seeing a smaller helmet would help me grasp it better as a parent, beginning therapy. What else was I going to do with it? I was not about to take up valuable memory box space with it, and I didn't want to send it to the dump. I was very excited when I asked them if they would be able to use it, and they said yes! Stella's head is adorable, and She has totally blossomed since we took it off. To date, she has had a little over 3 weeks of helmet-free-ness, and has since decided that if she is not sitting up on her own, she is not happy. But truthfully, her physical abilities have caught up with her mental desires, and she is doing great!

6/3/10 Mindi gets a frantic phone call from her mother. Mindi's 27 year old sister is gravely ill, and in the hospital. She nabs a flight to CA (where her sister is living) late in the afternoon (via an impromptu ride from Kat). It is a Thursday. We are scheduled to leave on a week-long Alaskan cruise on Saturday. We have not yet packed. In a heartbeat, I become a single mom with an infant and toddler, unsure of when the wifey will return, and faced with the responsibility of packing for a family of 4, all on my own, all while watching,changing, codling, loving my little ones. At this point, we are even unsure as whether we will be able to get on that boat.

6/4/10 Friday morning, my savior/friend Diana comes over to keep me sane help me focus make me laugh watch the kids, while I run around in chicken-esqe style, trying to pack. Let's not forget the fact that I have to pick up the dry cleaning and take Harris to his FIRST DENTIST APPOINTMENT. The dentist appointment was something I was not looking forward to. Harris is very much against things that make loud (loud to him of course) noises, and anything that someone unfamiliar is trying to stick in his mouth. nevertheless, Diana saved the day, and watched Stella while I took Harris. He did well, despite the fact that he wouldn't let the hygienist near him, and screamed and squirmed all the way through the dentist's exam. he loved the dentist after the fact though, and that toothpaste? That "just the right sized tube for me" with SPARKLES toothpaste? Well, Harris treated that like it was the best thing since sliced bread, and, apparently, his (child dentist, by the way) is now a celebrity in Harris' eyes. Awesome.
           After the stressful day of waiting , not knowing, and packing, my lovely wife flies in on a plane at 9:30pm.

6/5/10 Our lovely friend, Diana (who, I was getting QUITE sick of seeing- damn, it is like she never left my friggin' house! just kidding dirty Diana, just kidding!) drives us to the dock in the AM. Whew! We are going to get on that boat after all!!! After getting wee lost (but nothing Diana couldn't handle...) we make it to the big beautiful boat! We unload, give huggy thank you huggies, and start on our journey! The room on the boat is beautiful. It is large enough to feel that we were not cramped beyond belief, and we had popped for a verandah, which, to me, makes a WORLD of difference when you are on a cruise ship, especially with little kids!! We are all smiles. (and sweat- but mostly smiles).

To be Continued...

Saturday, June 12, 2010

READ THIS

My friend Kat clued me in to this list of fruits and fruit juices that contain lead. Don't get me started on LEAD.

NO AMOUNT OF LEAD IS SAFE

Please take a minute to check out this list. Think your favorites could not possibly be on this list? Whoa baby, THINK AGAIN!

the LIST Bum Bum BUUUUUUM!!!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

A Beautiful Commercial? You Betcha!

Touching and true. This one gave me chills, and I am sure that you will get them too!


Untitled from Lynn L on Vimeo.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Helmet Free!

7 weeks to the day, and we are helmet free! I took Stella for her weekly appointment, and Hillary, the helmet fitting lady (who has been super great) gave us the seal of approval to discontinue the helmet! It was honestly a joint decision between the 2 moms and the expert. Stella's head is not perfectly round, (no body's head is!!) but it is well within the average head measurements, and it is noticeably better than when we first started the therapy! I can tell that she is enjoying all of her nakie head time, as are we.

I definitely recommend that any parent who is considering this therapy give it a whirl, and I want to thank Carey from Finding Chaos once again for helping me get the knowledge and courage to challenge the "authorities"!

Thank you also, to everyone else who gave encouraging words along the way!!

Here is her first "newly out of helmet therapy " picture!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Weekend Roundup 7 -Good Enough For Pictures!!

As the title might imply, we are THIS CLOSE ||


to having our main bath completely finished! The only horrifically obvious thing missing (for looks) is the door to the new floor to ceiling built in storage unit! (Let us not think, for a moment, about the fact that we are still trying to finish up installing our new, snazzy tub and shower faucet set that, might I add, I have not done ONLY because the plumber that did the rough-in work installed the incorrect size of faucet nipple (ooh lala!...I digress) for our new faucet spout. I will have to call him back to rectify the situation before I can finish my job.

Up until this point in the project, I have determined, (by counting my receipts because I save them all in case I need them for returns), I have visited Home Depot 18 times (including today) over the course of the last 8 or so weeks, in order to finish this project! And that is also not including the 2 trips I made to Lowes... I have grown to know and like quite a few of the orange aproned folk there. Thanks Home Depot Friends!

I am really proud of the bathroom guys. So proud, that I fed my baby her 7pm bottle, while sitting on the toilet (lid) simply so that I could enjoy the bathroom for a little while before we came downstairs for computer time. There are still a few, misc. things that need to be done, as I mentioned, the door and faucet, along with some caulking and hook- hanging. But, without further ado...

Before:


AFTER!!



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