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Yesterday was James’ orthepedic surgeon appointment.  (You know it’s bad when in order to make the orthopedist appointment you pull out your other child’s medical records to get the name and number.)  Both Kris and I took James to it.  (Annika played at the neighbors.)  It was the least dramatic broken arm appointment in the history of broken arm orthopedist appointments.  We waited for a while to be called back.  Then we were ushered into a room with zero kids books or magazines so we made due with a Car & Driver (look at the cars James!), a hunting magazine (ignore the guns and dead animals James!) and a women’s magazine (Find the mommies James!) before we resorted to making silly faces at each other and singing the ABC’s.  (Side note: James makes the goofiest, silliest faces now and he cracks me up every time.  I have to get it on video and in some pictures stat!)  Finally the doctor came in and said the x-ray taken on Monday looked good.  No setting or surgery needed.  A child’s bones (especially a child as small as James) can be up to 20degrees off and still heal perfect straight.  And they don’t have to be end to end either (which James’ aren’t – they are slightly next to each other).  His plan was to cast it, x-ray it and have us come back in one week for another x-ray to check on it.  Then we’d come in three weeks after that to have the case taken off.  Four weeks total.  Wow, kids heal fast!  The doc was gone in less than three minutes.  The nurse came in and together she and I casted James’ arm.  First James picked out what color cast he wanted (blue, naturally).  He actually wanted blue and yellow but they didn’t have any yellow.  He was a little annoyed by that.  Then the nurse took the splint off and while I held James’ arm in place she put the cotton and fiberglass material around it.  Then we had to sit for a few minutes to let it dry.  Next was the x-ray (much easier this time with the cast in place – no pain in twisting his arm to get the needed views) and then one last two minute visit by the doc (x-ray looks fine, see ya in a week!).  Done.

James has adapted well to his broken arm.  If you ask him what’s wrong with his arm, he’ll tell you it’s broken.  He’s sleeping fine (Although could someone please make the child sleep past 6:20am again?  PLEASE?).  He’s eating well, becoming more adept at left handed utensil holding.  Otherwise Kris or I help feed him.  Finger foods are our friends.  He’s even figured out how to play with his Duplos.  He can put them together one handed and then to take them apart he sticks one piece in his mouth and “breaks” off the other piece by wrenching it off.  Smart boy!  In order to do bath time and sandbox time we wrap his arm in a plastic bag with a tie at the top and that seems to work pretty well.

Annika was pretty careful with her little brother at first too.  She’d help him up the stairs or make sure he was OK.  Now it’s basically back to normal for her.  Yes, James has a broken arm – doesn’t mean they can’t run and fight and ride toys down the hill by the house!  Ugh.  She’s also got quite the attitude lately.  I tell her no and she yells back at me “You’re making me so mad!”  or “You’re hurting my feelings!”  I’m just waiting for the first “I hate you!”  or “You don’t love me!” to come out of her mouth.  Of course two minutes later we’re cuddling and telling each other how much we love each other.  And Kris thinks I’m bipolar…

Me?  I’m doing better.  I think I’m going through the stages of grief.  I’ve come to the defensive/anger stage.  I don’t want to talk about what happened.  I don’t want people judging me. (Two year old with a broken arm!  Bad mother!  I see your stares in Target!)  I just want my boy to get better and move past this.  The guilt is still there and he WILL be wearing a helmet next time he’s on the horse (Side note: I told Kris yesterday after the appointment that we need to buy James a helmet and we hear James from the backseat shouting “Yay!  A helmet!  I love helmets!”)  but other than that, what are you going to do?  He’s a kid.  I forsee sprains and stitches and maybe even more broken bones in our future.  And I’m sure each one will be traumatic and stressful…for me.

Broken Arm Part Two

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Our wonderful Memorial Day weekend came to a crashing halt yesterday when Jamesy, my baby, broke his arm.  Shocking first sentence, huh?  The kids were down at the farm (Nana and Papa’s house) this weekend.  We went to pick them up yesterday and while there we saddles up Nada (the pony) for a quick ride around the yard.  Annika went first with Papa leading the horse.  All went well.  Jamesy went next and at first all was well.  Then Papa had Kris take over the reigns and as he did the horse spooked and took a quick, big step forward.  Jamesy lost his balance and fell off, landing on his back and somehow breaking his right arm.  I can’t believe it happened!  And Kris and Papa were both standing right there too with Nana and myself only feet away.  We rushed Jamesy to the hospital where they took x-rays, confirmed the break, gave him some tylenol and wrapped it up in a splint (to help with any swelling).  We go in on Thursday to have a cast put on.  Thank goodness he didn’t need surgery or to have it set or anything.  I’m kind of a wreck about it.  Kris keeps telling me to pull myself together (especially at the hospital yesterday) so I don’t scare James.  He keeps reassuring me that it’s only a break, a clean one at that, no surgery needed, it will heal fine, James won’t remember it (Annika doesn’t remember her broken arm – man, we suck as parents!), etc.  I keep telling him that I know all that in my head but my heart is broken for my baby.  Still accidents happen and thank God this one wasn’t more severe.  He’s a boy and I’m sure there will be more bumps and bruises in the future.  I broke my arm at 4 and again at 11.  Kris broke his leg at 4.  Annika broke her arm at 3.  James broke his at 2.  Maybe we’re just accident prone in our family. James was so strong and brave through the whole thing though.  We didn’t know it was broken until a few minutes after the accident he said his arm hurt.  We poked around a bit and then I saw that it was slightly bent in the middle of his right forearm.  That’s when I flew into panic/mama bear mode and grabbed him into my arms, declared we’re going to the hospital and walked straight to the truck.  Kris drove us there while Annika stayed back with Nana and Papa.  The whole time at the hospital James barely cried.  When he did cry I was able to soothe him by singing him his favorite song (Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star).  He’d even straighten up and sing with me sometimes.  He whimpered when they took the x-rays (having to move and twist his arm into position) and otherwise just cuddled into my chest the whole time.  We tried to keep telling him what to expect (pictures of his arm, medicine, “band-aid” on his arm, etc.) and promised him milk when we were done (the boy LOVES his milk).  He was so brave and when it was all over asked for his milk and a kiss to his arm.  I’m so proud of him.

Now for the rest of the weekend.  Saturday morning I went out for a run then we got dressed and ready to go to Dusty and Mel’s house for lunch.  Nana and Papa met us there.  The kids had a great time playing with Babe and then the slide that Nana and Papa brought.  We had a hard time getting them in for lunch!  Dusty made great Ahi Tuna steaks for sandwiches.  Yummy!  After lunch we kissed the kids good-bye (they went home with Nana and Papa) and then Dusty, Mel and Kris went out for a bike ride.  I vegged out on the couch.  After the bike ride Kris and I did a bit of shopping and then went for dinner at McCormick and Schmick’s.  We had a gift card from Krystle and Pierce.  Dinner was super yummy!  After dinner we made one more shopping trip and then went home.  We had a bonfire outside and enjoyed our quiet evening.

Sunday we slept in late (really late!) and then got to our landscaping tasks.  Kris put some pavers down around our tree in front, making a nice ring around it.  I purchased some flowers to fill that in.  It looks really nice!  While he was doing that I was busy in the backyard digging trenches around our trees, laying down landscape edging and then filling it all in with mulch.  The trees look great!  We also filled in some dead grass spots (thanks to the dog) with some of the sod we pulled up.  By the time we were done we were good and tired!  We ran to the store for some dinner fixings and then had another quiet evening with a movie and another bonfire – this time with Smores!  It was my plan to get the kids on Sunday but Nana and Papa called and they were all having such a great time that they wanted to stay down there another day.  Who needs mom and dad when you have such a great Nana and Papa!

Yesterday Kris and I got up early and headed to a group cycling ride in St. Louis Park with Dusty.  Turns out it was a 90 minute spin class or outdoor ride – instructor choice – and he chose spin class.  It would have been nice to know that ahead of time!  Instead we headed to the lakes and did our own ride.  It was fun, if windy.  Then we had lunch together before Kris and I headed home to shower and go get the kids.  And well, you know what happened then.

And that brings us to today.  We’ll have as quiet a week as we can so Jamesy can rest his arm and that’s about it.

Happy Birthday Kris!

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Yesterday was Kris’s birthday.  Happy Birthday baby!  We treated it as a normal day with presents.  Because we like to party or bring home paychecks.  One or the other.  James was nice enough to sleep in until 8am for Daddy’s birthday.  Annika not so much.  She was up with me (meaning around 6am) and when I left she was downstairs watching cartoons.  I think she was fairly quiet so Daddy could rest.  The rest of the day was business as usual.  When I got home from work we gave Daddy his presents (that have arrived – my Amazon order isn’t here yet) which, of course, were Legos that the kids picked out.  While they put the new toy together I made dinner.  Which is a “treat” in my house as Kris is the resident dinner maker around here.  While making dinner Annika spotted Ryan and Erin playing outside.  She quickly began begging to go over there to play.  It didn’t help that they were both shouting her name in a bid to get her over there.  After she begged and then promised to come right home when I said it was dinner time (since when did she figure out how to bargain with me!?!) I let her go over.  I figured it was nicer for her to be gone and let Kris and James play Legos in peace than it was to force her to stay and listen to her whine and cry and complain.  I’m a total sucker.  Then there was dinner and off Kris went to work.  See?  Party city!  Rock on!

Last Sunday Gramme, Pierce’s mom Mary Kay and I threw a bridal shower for Krystle.  It was a big combined family shower with all sides of the families represented.  And it turned out great!  The food was great, the decorations were pretty, Krystle looked absolutely beautiful, and it was a great afternoon.  Kris was out of town last weekend (coaching the Machine in Kansas City) so Saturday (prep day) was busy with just me and the kids.  We ran to three stores for last minute supplies and then I rushed around getting things done while they played.  Or napped.  Or played again.  It wasn’t too bad actually.  And Sunday morning wasn’t nearly as rushed as I thought it was going to be.  I had done a good job on Saturday of getting everything prepped and staged so all I had to do Sunday morning was get us all fed, bathed, dressed, the truck packed up and to the venue on time.  With families as big as ours, we rented out a community center for the shower.  At least I didn’t have to clean my house too!  Krystle and Pierce received some truly wonderful gifts (making Krystle cry more than once).  I was pretty busy during the shower (running a couple games, writing down what gifts she received, refilling the punch, making sure the kids weren’t wreaking havoc, etc.).  The only downside of the day?  No one took a picture of Krystle and I together.  There’s pictures of Krystle and the moms, Krystle with her other bridesmaids, Krystle and Pierce, Krystle and the kids but not one of Krystle and me.  I’m pretty bummed about that. Of course it’s nobody’s fault.  I didn’t remember myself to do it either.  I’ll have to make sure to get a picture with her at the personal shower/bachelorette party coming up.

Wednesday night as I was putting Annika to bed she told me, for the first time, that she wanted to go to Disney.  And that she had told Daddy and he said Jamesy had to be 5 1/2 before we could go.  Heh.  Guess he just spilled the beans that we had tentatively been planning a trip for 2012/2013ish.

Two Stories

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Friday night James is playing in his room.  I’m in there also picking out pajamas for him to wear that night.  I’m listening to him chatter away when I start hearing this “Boobie!  Boobie!  Boobie!”  What!!!  I turn around to see him “reading” Susan Boynton’s “Belly Button Book.“  Ah!  Bee-bo!  James is saying bee-bo and getting the syllables backwards!  I correct him, read him the book before bed and the evening goes on.

Yesterday morning the kids and I were in Target getting some last minute bridal shower supplies.  (More on the bridal shower to come – much to tired to re-cap tonight.)  We’re near the card/wrapping paper section when Annika starts telling me about her baby sister again.  You know, the one she wants to grow in my belly who’s going to sleep in her room in her bed and she’ll just sleep in Mommy’s room on the floor next to Mommy’s bed?  She says that she’s going to get her baby sister a pink piggy bank.  I play along.  She says to not tell daddy because it’s going to be a surprise (boy, would it!).  Oh, and she wants to get that piggy bank right now as we just passed one in the store.  I tell her we’re not getting it now.  Shopping goes on and as we pass by the piggy bank a second time she exclaims in frustration “Mom, you forgot to get the piggy bank again!”  That girl and her exasperated tone, you’d think she was a teenager already!

Down But Not Out

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I started writing this on Monday.  And then I came down with strep throat.  Spent most of Tuesday and yesterday in bed (took a 4 hour nap yesterday!) and am now starting to feel almost normal again.  Stupid throat still hurts but at least the full body aches are gone.  Anyway, that’s why this Mother’s Day update is so late.  Sorry!

Happy Mother’s Day!  I hope you all had a great day on Sunday.  I sure did.  Let’s back up to Saturday first though.

Saturday was duathlon day!  Kris and I did our first duathlon Saturday.  It was a 3 mile run, 14 mile bike, 3 mile run.  Race details can be found at Sweat.  After the race we had a quick lunch with Dusty and his friend Kathy and then it was home to relieve Krystle and Pierce of their babysitting duties.  Thank you so much Krystle and Pierce for spending almost the whole day at our house!  After they left I took James upstairs to put him down for a nap.  (As an aside, when he woke up, he immediately asked where Krystle and Pierce were – apparently 7 hours with them isn’t enough!)  While James napped Annika and I took a nice, hot whirlpool bath together.  Me to ease any aches and pains from the duathlon, Annika just for fun, of course.  After the bath, I turned on some cartoons for Annika in my room and laid down to take a nap too.  Annika was a bit on the squirrelly side so not a lot of napping actually occurred.  Oh, well.  At least I got to rest.

Eventually I got my butt out of bed and into the shower so I could get properly primped for the evenings activities!  As soon as James got up (three and a half hours later) I changed him and Annika and got them ready to go.  It was football time!  We went to our first Minnesota Machine game that night.  It was a bummer because we lost but I thought it was a good game nonetheless.  The kids had a good time.  Of course they would with Nana and Papa there!  At half time Papa took them for a walk around the area.  I saw them over on the visitor side of the field at the start of the third quarter.  The kids didn’t last too long in the bleachers during the second half (James was starting to get tired) so I took them down to the bottom and let them play and run back and forth.  Annika used this time to first run (with Jamesy running too – quite the fun game) and then dance (over and over again she’d ask if I was ready for the next one) and James used it to sing.  We had to sing his favorites while he snuggled.

After the game was over we went down to the field.  The kids took off running all over the field.  Kris talked to a few players and such and then we corralled everyone and headed for the cars.  It was late by this time and I needed to get the kids home and in bed.  Annika was out fairly quickly but Jamesy stayed awake the whole car ride home!  Stinker.  He was easy to put to bed when we got home though.

Sunday morning after our usual cartoon/parents “resting” morning routine I laid out the plan for Mother’s Day – breakfast, church, lunch out, Lowe’s, yard work, dinner, family time, bedtime for the kids, Dollhouse for the parents.  Everyone was agreeable to the plan. (OK, there was a little whining from Kris about having to do yard work since he was sore from the duathlon but he played along nicely anyways.)

The yard work wasn’t too strenuous.  Just some edging of trees and bunny-proofing (hopefully) of the garden.  More work to do though (3 of 7 trees done plus the front one yet).   I’m so excited to buy some flowers but it’s still getting a bit chilly at night and then the windstorms we’ve been having the last few days…well, I’m excited to get some in the next few days hopefully.

And I think that brings us to today.  There’s some last minute things to get done for Krystle’s bridal shower on Sunday.  And Kris will be out of town this weekend coaching.  And life goes on.  (Oh, and who else is happy Danny got voted out last night?)  Hopefully I’ll have some cute kid stories for you soon.


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James has his first crush…on Allison Iraheta…of American Idol.  Apparently my boy likes redheads.  Or girls who can belt it out like no one else.  Good choice, my boy.  Every time he sees her on tv he says “There’s Allison!” (kind of like he does when he sees Obama – “There’s Obama!”)  And when she sings, he’s entranced.  We had to pause our DVR’d Tuesday night episode tonight so James would actually eat some dinner.  He was much too busy watching his beloved Allison instead.

He’s going to be crushed next week when there is no more Allison on the show.  His mommy will be a little bit too.  She wishes Danny had gone home last night instead…

A little of this…

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Remember when I said I had some blood tests done recently? Turns out all my levels fell within the normal range for thyroid and hemoglobin levels. One test (ferritin) came back close to the low end of the range and Dr. Google, M.D. says that this result could mean I’m borderline anemic. Symptom of anemia? Fatigue. Great. Treatments? Limit caffeine consumption (check), take iron supplement (check). So. Yeah. Not sure what else to do there. Just make sure I get adequate sleep? Keep eating right and exercising? Make sure I get this checked out at each yearly physical? Will do, I guess.

Jamesy is very into pretend play lately. (Also singing Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star – his favorite, ABC song and Where is Thumpkin) He loves making things up and acting like a typical boy. One of his favorite games when we were visiting Carrie and Adam was “falling in the water.” He would climb up on the two foot wide hearth of their fireplace then jump off while telling us “Oh no, I’ve fallen in the water! Quick! Help me!” Then Annika would rush over and help him stand up. He played this game over and over.

Another game we’ve been playing at home a lot lately is Memory. Annika has a Disney princess memory game. We used to play it with the cards face up and we’d find matches that way. Now I’m flipping them face down and playing the “right” way. She loves this game and is pretty good at it! I have to play her fair and square or I’d lose miserably. Annika is pretty competitive (she is so my daughter) so if I get a match she gets upset. And if I have more matches than she does (she counts after every match made) then she gets upset too. Time to start emphasizing good sportsmanship!

This last weekend the kids were down at Nana and Papa’s house. We met for lunch on Saturday to do the hand off. The kids, as usual, were pretty excited. They had big plans for their fun trip. Like riding Nada (their pony). And they did. I wish I had been there to see it! They went out to the barn and saddled up Nada and then Nana and Papa asked who wanted to go first. Annika shot her arm in the air! My scared little girl just needed a little warm up time apparently. So, up she went on the horse and then Papa walked the horse around the yard while Nana became resident photographer. Next was James’ turn. He hopped right on too and went for a walk around the yard. I’m so proud of my big kids! I was able to get the pictures and will upload those later this week. Sunday the kids were out helping feed the horses when Nada stuck her head out of her stall. She lowered it to the ground and the kids spent quite a while petting her and loving on her. Annika (the little Mommy) had to pick all the straw out of her mane. And the kids were getting pieces of hay to feed to her. We may have to bring down some apples or carrots next time and let the kids feed her some treats!

While the kids were off having a great time Kris and I went opposite directions. I went out for a two hour duathlon workout then showered and headed to ASK’s Founder’s Day dinner. My sorority is 20 years old already! It was a fun evening out with my friends. I met some of the newer members of the organization and reconnected with a couple older members. Most of my group of friends were there and we had a great time during dinner (especially Pam and her “game”). I missed most of the presentation because Mathias called at the start. I stepped out to talk to him (Miss him so much! Always take his call!) and when I got back in they were wrapping up. Oh well. After the dinner a few of us went to a local campus bar (Sally’s!) and talked for a couple more hours. We were laughing so hard a few times! That Stephanie is a little spitfire. I miss her. She’s always great fun to hang out with. Too bad she’s living in D.C. now.

While I was out partying (heh), Kris was out coaching. The Machine had a game Saturday night which turned out to be no big deal. It was 30-0 at the end of the first quarter! Way to go girls! I’m hoping to make this weekend’s game (with the kids) for my first Machine game! After the game Kris went out to grab something to eat with the team and then he and I arrived home about the same time. It was a late night for both of us.

Sunday morning we slept in late (We didn’t wake until 10am! Ah, bliss!) After a lazy breakfast we ran to Target and the grocery store. I can’t remember the last time Kris and I went grocery shopping together sans kids. It’s almost like a luxury! We had planned on going down to the farm after shopping was over and yet somehow we wasted the rest of the day away. I transplanted some garden seedlings to bigger pots. Kris started a non-kid friendly movie (Quantum Solace), I ran a quick trip for gardening supplies and before we knew it, it was after 4pm! Kris had some work he had to get done (darn non-working equipment!) so we ran there on our way to the farm. By the time we left there it was dinnertime. A quick call to the farm notified us that they were eating soon so we grabbed dinner on our own. A restaurant meal sans kids! Another luxury! Then, finally we were on our way. We still had chores to do once we got there! I had my bridesmaid dress and Annika’s flower girl dress with us and we both had our first dress fittings. Annika’s needs some major work, mine not so much. Luckily Nana is an expert seamstress and will take good care of us. How lucky are we? The kids were not too excited to be going home with us but they went semi-willingly.

Monday night was a picture perfect evening. I had my patience back (thanks to a good night’s sleep and some kid free time over the weekend?) and the kids were behaving (listening is a problem we’re working on right now). After bath time we raced to James’ room (complete with a ready, set, go and a race down the hallway – a nightly ritual) then sat down to put a diaper and pajamas on. I told James I needed a hug so he turned around, jumped in my lap and made “hugging” noises. You know, how when you squeeze someone real hard and make that little grunty noise? He was doing that. This hug lasted forever (a couple minutes) and he made grunty noises the whole time. It was so cute!

Monday night I moved Annika’s bike seat up a couple inches. Girl has grown since last summer! I also moved her training wheels to as high as they would go. She’s been asking to learn to ride her bike. We’ll take this first step. She was apprehensive on her first couple tours around the driveway but then she’s always cautious/scared/nervous at first. I’m hoping the next time we’re outside on her bike that she’ll embrace it a little more. She can do it. I know she can. We just need to practice. Soon. We’ll do that soon.