Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Sucked Up By the Bachelorette

I know Trista was the first bachelorette and that some guy named Bentley ticked everyone off a few seasons ago.. but besides that.. I haven't really been on the Bachelorette or Bachelor bandwagon.  Well, that is.. until now.

Brooks Forrester, the man who dumped the bachelorette recently, was one of the marketing sales representatives who presented a marketing proposal to the company I work for (we didn't end up going with them, but halfway through Brooks had to sign off anyway because of the show hahaha).  So I've talked to him on the phone, have e-mails from him in my inbox, and somehow, though he has no idea what I look like and probably doesn't even remember me... I feel like I owe it to him to watch.  And so I have been sucked in.  I have watched at least 5 episodes this season (that's a lot for moi!).

It's also a great thing to run in the background while I work at night, but now I really want to know what happens!  Will Brooks be coming back??  Who knows?!  I will in a week or so!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Can I Be French and Let My Armpit Hair Grow Amuck Now?!

There's been a lot of buzz about how the French parent and how their kids are better behaved.  One of they key differences noted is that they don't let their children snack and therefore, they eat better in restaurants and at specific mealtimes.  When Andy and I first read all the buzz about a year ago, we agreed but thought - well sometimes you just have to let your kids snack if you're out and about and your kid doesn't eat normal kid food (sandwiches really).  But lately, I've taken another more specific go at French parenting and the results have been fantastic.  So much that I am just waiting for the American trend to follow the French with their uninhibited armpit hair.

Before we even attempted the French ways, we first realized we had to control our son's sugar intake.  Just like his dear mother, he has a lot of energy and any bit of sugar (and probably caffeine in the future) wires him beyond normal 2 year old hyper.  His stamina and reaction to chastisement doesn't help the situation.  He thinks it's hilarious when our voices are raised and we get mad, so we've tried our best to stop (because he also mimics us and yells "don't do that Mommy!" when he's upset or yells "no!" at us).  Afte reading another article about how the French try to adjust the foods their kids eat, I thought about what Jordan had been eating lately.  We kept attributing his bad behavior to the transition during the move and messed up sleep schedule, but then I thought about what he had been eating lately.

Junk food while we were moving.  Carbonated drinks cuz .. well just cuz we are having it.  Cookies cuz everyone welcomed us into the neighborhood with some!  Snacks because we were constantly out and about trying to get stuff for the home.  Oh my.

I first began adjusting his breakfast meal.  I stopped giving him Trix or Apple Jacks (which he LOVESSSS and still asks for) and instead his week's breakfast so far has consisted of Raisin Bran, Chex Mix, boiled eggs with garlic toast and multigrain toast with Nutella and bananas (sugary but still less than the sugary cereals).  There might not be a great control in my experiment, but I'm calling it a success.  He actually listens when you say 1-2-3 or big boy timeout (timeout sitting at the bottom of our pantry closet with the door closed which is quite dark) and hasn't been incredible difficult like he was the past few weeks.  He can sit down to read or color albeit it anywhere from two to ten minutes top.  He gets thirsty or hungry before lunch around 12:30 (when he's absolutely famished) and has some water, grapes, or a tiny bit of snacks (we use the stackable Mr. Brown's snack variety pack which only allows us to pack a tiny bit of each snack).  So far he's sat down to eat lunch now strapped into his booster seat so he can be tall like Mommy and Daddy (a persuasive technique that has really benefited us) and eaten multiple entire meals with fruit and water.  As  reward, he sometimes gets a few Nila wafers after or some goldfish, but since he's already eaten his main meal, he's pleased with a few and the sugar intake is controlled.  And, if I wait until he's truly hungry at lunch, he really wants to eat.  He asks over and over, "eat Mommy?" and willingly leaves any "fun" he may be having so he can eat or drink when hungry or thirsty.

To further support my hypothesis that Jordan is sensitive to sugar... yesterday, Jordan didn't nap, but he quietly played in his room and ate a big lunch and dinner, both of which were not too artificially sugar infested.  He was excited to eat watermelon, cantaloupe, beans and ground pork with cheese in a hamburger bun.  Man... the French are pure genius.  Oui oui.

Now if only I could grow my armpit hair without everyone looking at me funny.

The Starbucks of Utah

is....7-Elevens!  Awesome blossom, fantastic elastic, slurpees whopees!!  Everywhere I turn, there's a 7-Eleven, sometimes within two or three blocks of each other.  For a non-coffee drinker like myself (seriously that stuff makes your teeth nasty and breath reek after a long time too!), this is wonderful news!  To be honest, I've never seen the appeal of Starbucks, was always a Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf type of gal, so this is fabulous news to me.  Thank you Utah!  

Friday, July 12, 2013

Perks of Living By Family

Free babysitters!

Delicious spontaneous dinners!

Cousins for Jordan and Bubba! (this summer at least...)

Sunday dinners with everyone!

Free fireworks! (Andy's uncle is a fireworks dealer)

Help with rides while hubs is at work (for errands like my car getting fixed)!

And most recently... an arcade and pool table!  Because Andy's aunt, Jan, who moved into a new home around the same time we did that is less than 2 minutes away, just got an arcade put in her house along with the pool table already there!  She didn't get it herself, hahaha ... some uncles decided it was necessary and got it from DI and put it there.  We're not complaining!

I LOVEEEE Bust-a-Move!  It's my one favorite video game (I'm not a video game person at all...) and it brings back sweet memories of playing with my BFF at her house with their joysticks!  Fun fun fun!!!!!

So far I've beat EVERYONE.

Jordan is way excited!!!

I am up this late because I just finished working and now I have to go feed Bubba.. 


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

How's It With Two?

I'm not really sure.  I want to say it's easy.. but life has been a challenge lately.  I mean... the boys? They are easy peasy!  If I could devote all my time to them and only them.. it'd be wonderful.  However, life doesn't seem to be just about them two.  The really undeniably hard part is getting BlueSky work done, finishing the unpacking, finding time for a shower, doing the laundry, washing the dishes, cleaning the house, and making dinner by the time Andy comes home so we can maximize the time we have with him at night.  And, it's made harder when Jordan just wants to go outside to play, knows how to unlock and open both our main door and the screen door.  It will be a few more days until our lock at the top is installed and I don't have to worry about him as much.

We're just getting back into our routine... I'm trying to figure out all the storytimes and fun things like parks and splash pads or free things around here to do but since we are one hour ahead of PST, all my work calls are now from 10AM-12PM, which doesn't coincide well with toddler playtime and lunch... so Mommy has to get a bit creative now and do a better job of preparing and filling non conference call days with fun items.  Unfortunately, there are more life interruptions like returning goods purchased and not used, fixing the car, getting the car registered, etc. that have gotten in our way so far.  Can't wait to be done with those things!

I also have a much bigger house to not only finish unpacking and figuring out what frames and art go on which walls, but clean as well!  The kitchen takes forever to wipe down and Martha Stewart advises me to wipe my kitchen floors everyday.  Oh my.  Making dinner?  So hard to get back into the swing of things after being gone from kitchen duties since March!  I am going to try devoting most of Sunday afternoon to some food preparation in anticipation for the week's menu.  I'm hoping that alleviates some of the preparation burden I have run into so far this week.  As for work, I am prioritizing calls to companies and e-mails that have to be sent during business hours and work that I can do after hours while I watch TV at night in the comfort of our living room with just me awake (all the boys are asleep by 10 PM).  The shower part .. well that means trying to stay in A/C places without sweating too much so I can take one ever other day...but that won't last long as I am officially instituting Operation Tone-Up for all the weddings I have to go to this upcoming fall, next spring and summer in a few days (I keep delaying it).

So I'm not sure if all the juggling of these tasks is hard because I am now a mother of two or because we just moved or because I've been spoiled after being on bedrest and giving birth or whatever.  Whatever the case... as busy as I am with two and everything else, my heart is overflowing with love and happiness for those two beyond belief.  I am enjoying those pure bliss moments of me and the kiddos more than I ever did as a first time mother of one.  I think the first time around, I worried a lot about statistics and milestones and capturing it all month by month whereas now I'm just enjoying it (though I should whip out my camera a bit more also).  I absolutely love just holding Bubba or Jordan and having time with each of them separately and together.  Sitting with Bubba in the Moby and Jordan wanting to get cuddled is so much fun.  Or lying in bed with Jordan reading a book with Bubba lying on me while we read.  Ultimate best.  And so far, I love when both boys only want me... and I cherish each moment with just me and the boys, even when both are crying and I just want to hit myself and cry for help.  Those times pass really quickly and then it's all the love again.  It's seriously the best.  Living the dream.    

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Bubba Boy

I haven't done a great job tracking Bubba's milestones but he's huge, over 12 pounds and only two months and a week old!  The doctor is so impressed with his weight gain since birth and we're a bit nervous about him fitting into his blessing outfit (we're thinking August maybe...?) that May is making for him.  He's in that fist held tightly stage, spits up quite a bit after eating, and never seems satisfied unless we're holding him.  He sleeps beautifully if in your arms but we've been spoiling him so since he had to go for so long without anyone holding him while in the NICU.  He has a lot of neck strength already and can hold himself up quite well for a two month old baby.  He is sensitive, he cries when upset at even the littlest thing like me putting clothes on him or nudging him in the face by accident, and turns bright red when he's upset, but he gets over it quickly within a few seconds and is fine again.  He likes to sleep with his hands by his face and sometimes on one hand or with one hand open as if he's waving.  His cries are so cute to me and when he gets really upset, they become screechy and high pitched but still kind of crack me up.  His eyes are still a soft gray and magnified in the sunlight.  He sleeps for 3-5 hours and is pretty easy going.  Our biggest challenge right now is trying to get him to sleep on his own without having to hold him until he falls asleep and then put him down.  He seems to do okay at night but during the day, he just wants to be held.  He does sleep tremendously well in the carseat, so going out with him hasn't been an issue at all.

We love our Bubba boy.  It's weird that life existed without him before.

Big brother still loves Bubba and asks about him whenever he wakes up or doesn't see Bubba, but he has become a little more clingy lately, asking us to hold him and asking for Mommy.  I can't complain because he still does great reading a book or playing with the iPhone while I nurse Bubba right next to him, and he calls nursing "pump" because for the longest time, all he knew was Mommy was always "pumping" and I think because it's in that general area.  It's really cute.  Mommy pump?

Friday, July 5, 2013

Fireworks Galore

We live in an area that overlooks the Salt Lake Valley.  They recently made it legal to shoot fireworks into the air by any Joe, Jane, Dick or Sally (anyone really).  So tonight, from our balcony and bedroom window, we could see a ton of fireworks being shot up all over Salt Lake City.  It was pretty rad.  Speckles of wonderfulness reminding us of the freedoms we have here in the wonderful U. S. of A.  Party in the USA!!!

I want to do a post on the amazing annual Fourth of July picnic up in Milcreek Canyon (and the third I've been to so far!) that Andy's family puts on (my family now too!), but I don't have any photos on my comp quite yet and I am EXHAUSTED from the work I had to do just now to get some e-mails out before tomorrow's business day begins... so I'll just say...

I'm an America and I'm from American!!  

AmeriCAN not can't.

Every HEART BEATS TRUE for the red, white, and blue.


Yea, yea yea!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Happy Fourth of July!  

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Stamp of Approval

I've been quite nervous for my mom to see our house.  She's been in the real estate business since 1994 so she knows a few things.  This past year, she took the #2 top seller award for her office (a huge feat and one my brother and I were so proud and happy for her to take the title of... she'd always been #3 or #4 for years upon years upon years, even after we were both out of the house and she thought the freed up time would help her get there but it didn't, sad face).

My dad also has a real estate license but he's not practicing.  He just helps my mom out with open houses here and there and for years, they'd been pushing me to get my own license to help them out and just to alleviate the 3% commission and have more knowledge really.  My uncle also is licensed and helps out my mom, and my cousin just recently got his license and is practicing and getting mentored by my mom.  So it's in the family, sort of. ..

Back to my nerves.  Would my parents give me their stamp?  Would they tell me it was an awful investment and even if I didn't agree, would I be burdened by their disapproval and be sad for days?  They were a little shocked how fast we made an offer and bought a house and that we were paying mortgage for a few months without living there.  I tried to explain it was exactly what we wanted but concerns were very obviously there.  Even as an adult, you want your parents' approval... I'm unsure why, but it's so important even if it shouldn't always be.  So yes, I wanted my parents' approval.  Yes, it's a bit immature but oh well.

I tried to clean up as many boxes as possible.  I knew they would scrutinize the mess despite my constant reminders that we were still unpacked.  I wanted them to like it.  I wanted them to see its potential.

Andy helped me clear out some boxes.  I cleared most of the den which serves as my office and Jordan's toy storage because this is where they'd be sleeping.  It was still a mess to say the least.  Boxes.  Clothes.  Stuff.  Hoarder status.

I picked my parents up from the airport yesterday (on my own with Bubba... first time driving there!) and brought them home for their first glimpse of the home.  "It looks bigger than it does in the photos, and much much better!" my dad explained as I pulled into the driveway.  First sigh of relief.

We walked into the home.  "Oh, this is nice!" my mom says.  Second sigh of relief.

They toured the home.  They inspected the rooms.  They told me it was well kept.  Very good condition!  They explained how the size was perfect for our family.  They liked it!  They said it was comfortable.  They said the A/C was great.  They said the kitchen was huge!

And then, they gave me their stamp of approval.

HUGE sigh of relief.  

And yes, my mother bless her heart still told me how messy it was even after I explained we are still unpacking.  She offered to help me with the clothes but not really knowing where stuff was going, I couldn't have her help.  I'm not great at delegating and I have morning calls all Wednesday so.... yeah.  Good thing we cleared those other million boxes or else I'd never hear the end of it.  Oh mother dearest.  We are getting there.. slowly but surely.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Unpacking Is The Pits!

Who knew so many boxes could take over my life?!  I can't figure out where to put everything but in order to properly assess the situation and organizational destination of each item, I have to take everything out of the boxes.  This poses a dilemma as then I am stuck with these boxes in my way instead of space to organize.

On the bright side, our home is getting closer to being a home even if in every walkway is a box, some flat, some stuffed to the brims with crinkled paper, and clothes here and there.  I just want to dispose of the boxes but that's the one downside of having a home versus an apartment - no dump truck!

My parents are coming into town tomorrow night and staying with us until Saturday morning.  I am excited but also knowing my parents... know that we will probably spend more time hanging in the house than braving the heat with two kids.  We probably won't even eat out, just take out and eat at home.  But it seems nobody fully understands this except for my brother.  I talked to him this evening for a bit and when I told him the plans for when they come into town.. he agreed that with the heat, they'd probably just want to stay home.  Well, not both of them- but my mom would win the battle and we'd stay in.  When I told him I was going to take my parents to the outlets, he screamed with joy, "outlets!"  You see, growing up.. outlets were a thing of fun to us.  I think most people think we're crazy, but that's just kind of our thang.  My dad isn't a shopper, but he will drive us and then let us walk around as he roams the bookstores and then meet us two or three hours and lots of shopping bags later.  The hours we spent at Cabazon, the best outlet (in my humble opinion) and just minutes from Palm Springs, where our really close family friends lived and we visited often.  Oh the hours.

Well.. I'm done organizing for the night.  I can't wait to put up photos of the place.. I didn't get a lot of before shots but just imagine a horrifically messy home and you're spot on.  I have big plans for the home over the course of the next year.  One of my problems, which my mom always yells at me about, is wanting to do it all right away my way asap.  I'm sure I will get a earload from my mom if she notices how dark the bags under my eyes are from staying up late to get the house ready... which is why I'm putting in extra hours before they get here!  And then I can just blame it on the new baby who is sleeping wonderfully.  But since I've admitted to that, I'm sure tonight will be a rough one.