Tuesday, July 29, 2008

My brave little boy

Today was a scary day around our house; my first big mommy scare. Child o'mine was playing "dinosaur hunter" with our Lab Lily and chasing her when he lost his balance and fell head first onto our coffee table. The minute I saw his head I knew we needed to get to the ER. It was a deep, wide cut just above his left eyebrow (barely missing his eye, and we're thanking God it did). I tried not to panic or cry, but that's pretty hard when your child has a bloody, gaping wound. I quickly realized I had to get it together, that he needed me to be brave so he could be.

To add to the drama, this happened minutes before we were to leave to take my sister and 4-month old niece to the airport. I called for my sister to come quickly and told her I had to take my baby to the ER. She cradled him, holding a cloth to his head while I frantically made phone calls trying to find her a ride to the airport. Once we got that handled (thank you Kim, you are a true blue friend), my sister suggested we put a bandage or something on his head for the ride to the ER. She raced to her bathroom and came out with a panty liner and some Diego band aids. We thankfully snapped to our senses and grabbed some gauze and first aid tape instead.

I had to rush out and leave her behind to wait for her ride, which is not the way I would have liked to end our visit, but it is what it is. Another true blue friend rode with me to the ER to keep me calm and avoid a speeding ticket or worse, an accident.

My sweet bean was so very brave at the ER. Watching him wrapped like a burrito, his face covered in a blue cloth while the doctors/nurses were stitching him up seemed to scare me more than him. He never cried but instead put on his best big boy front and got through it all with flying colors.

We're home now, and he's resting. I've said many prayers of thanksgiving that four stitches was all he got and more prayers that we keep trips to the ER few. All the mommy/child struggles and challenges we've had this summer have faded from my mind, and all I want to do now is hold him and love him and keep him safe. I love you, my brave little boy.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Tie Dye Day

Today we made the cutest tie dye baby clothes! Found the how-to's in the current issue of Parent's Magazine and it looked simple enough. It was easy, but beware it is super messy. We did these outside--my sweet boy really wanted to help and got a little carried away being the "pot stirrer." At the end of our project we had created a tank top for my child, three cute baby onsies/tees and a hat for my niece and a oh my gosh it's totally ruined beautiful new patio chase lounge cushion covered with blue dye (aaarrrggghhh!)

p.s. if anyone has a tip for getting dye out of upholstery fabric, I will be your new BFF!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Where's the beef?

Great White Hunter has not been thrilled with this week's dinner menu to say the least. As I mentioned, I bought the cookbook Deceptively Delicious in my attempt to handle the current eating challenges presented by child o'mine, and this was it's debut week. Problem for the hubby is most things I chose to make are sans meat. Like the super yummy mac-n-cheese, which had white bean and cauliflower purees, or the butternut squash pasta dinner, which was also really good, however, no meat. Last night we had black bean burgers - oh so good - but Great White Hunter almost had a breakdown. "Where's the beef?" he protested. "Every night this week you've been feeding me plants. I want meat!" I tried to fib and tell him that there was beef in the burgers, but he didn't just fall off the meat-mobile yesterday, you know.

It's hard sometimes when you are trying so desperately to find things both your kids and your significant other will eat. I love to cook, but seriously, the people in this house need to cut me some slack and just eat whatever I serve them or I may stop serving them all together. I refuse to make two different meals - you know, how some people serve their kids different meals than they serve themselves - I'm just not going there. I am pretty close to going on strike; have my picket sign ready and I'm not afraid to use it. What ever happened to the love? What about, "Thanks Mommy for a yummy dinner." or, "That was good, honey, thank you for always cooking for us."

I'm going to take a vacation by myself and let Great White Hunter handle the mealtime for a week. Maybe then I'll get some respect.

p.s., for dinner tonight he's getting steak, pork chops, hamburgers, chicken, ribs, lamb, venison, sausage....you get the picture. Maybe then he'll be happy.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The sweet days of summer

It was a great trip to our new beach "house" and the weather was divine. We spent our days lounging in the sand and frolicking in the waves, doing everything but really nothing at all. This trip a discovery was made by my sweet bean, and I got one sweet memory to boot. We were all sitting in our beach chairs one afternoon, enjoying our surroundings when I heard it: the jingly, slightly static but funky little melody from my past. Could it be? Was it really THE ICE CREAM TRUCK? (I can't help but think back to that Eddie Murphy comedy bit about the ice cream truck - 'member that one? "I got my ice cream, and you can't have none.")

I jumped out of my chair and turned to see the truck approaching. Until this moment, my soon to be five-year old son didn't even know ice cream trucks existed. Yet somehow, by that jangled-up tune, he knew exactly what was headed his way. His face lit up and he looked at me with the biggest of eyes. I barely got the words "ice cream" out of my mouth and he was off, joining the hoards of other kids dashing toward the truck. Great White Hunter and I gave each other a quick look, then he dashed to the car for some $$ and I started throwing things out of my beach bag in search of something to take pictures with.

I emerged with our video camera, which thankfully takes still pictures, just in time to see child o'mine hand his money over to the ice cream man and receive his treat. He chose a seriously gross alien looking lovely green/blue turtle-shaped concoction, returned to his beach chair and savored this moment. As did I, sweet boy, as did I.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

A humble beach abode

We are leaving for the beach again today, but this time it's different. We recently purchased a small beach condo and this will be our first time staying in our own place, so we're pretty excited. During our last trip, we stumbled upon a good deal and just couldn't pass it up, seeing as we make so many trips to the beach each summer and rentals are getting quite pricey. It's a huge deal for us, buying this condo and a little scary, too; we now have a second "house payment" each month. We plan on fixing it up and renting it out, which thrills me because I love fixing anything up (you should have seen Great White Hunter before I married him).

It's time to head out, now, down to our humble beach abode. I can't wait.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I thought boys were supposed to be easy?

Whoever said "boys are easy" never met my soon to be 5-year old son. Maybe it's the age, or maybe because it's summer and we're together 24/7, but lately he fights me on everything, which I'm sure my Mother loves because I was a terrible slightly difficult child. I'm starting to realize I've given birth to myself (stop laughing, Mom). Here's an example of a typical day:
me: "The sky is blue."
child: "The sky is gray."
me: "2+2 is four."
child: "2+2 is 184."
me: "It's time for swim lessons, you love swim lessons!"
child (who really loves swim lessons): "I hate swim lessons, I'm not going!"
me: "Why am I even talking anymore?"

Our latest battles revolve around clothes and food. I do love to shop, and when I was pregnant I remember thinking, "Oh having a boy is going to be great. I can shop for him and he'll wear all the cute things I pick out, no problem!" Ha! Not the case. Anything I pick out for him he'll turn his nose up at and tell me "It doesn't match, Mommy." or "I don't like that fabric." (What?? Now you're picky about fabric??)

What's really taking a toll on me right now is the food battles. Child o'mine has always been a fabulous eater; not so much in quantity but in quality. I made all his baby food, convinced that it would help his future eating habits, which it has, until now. (BTW, I highly recommend the book Annabel Karmel's First Meals - it's a great baby food cookbook.) He gripes no matter what I put on his plate other than chocolate - yes, he is my son. Last night I gave him roast chicken, which he usually devours, and he said, "I don't like chicken, I like meat!" Mind you, he'll say the reverse when I give him meat. I truly believe this behavior is more control driven, because I'll see him grab a broccoli spear when I'm not looking.

The sad part about the food battles is this: instead of having quality meal time, eating together and talking about our day, I now dread it and find myself leaving the room so he can eat alone (bad Mommy, very bad Mommy!) I'm sure this too shall pass, but in the meantime I've purchased Jessica Seinfeld's Deceptively Delicious cookbook and will start hiding things in his food. Who's in control now?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Me Oh My, I Love Fried Pie

Blueberry Fried Pies - they were so very good.

Served warm, sprinkled with powdered sugar and cinnamon, ice cream if you please. Thank you, Homesick Texan, for a fabulously easy recipe
for some dang deelicious little pies.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A boring day

Had a couple of orders to fill plus one birthday present to complete, so I spent much of today sewing away. This is what my sweet boy calls, "a boring day." So that he didn't lose out completely, I made this for him (cut a T-Rex out of some old camo fabric and stitched to a t-shirt). Apologies for my crummy photos, I'm still without a camera and have to resort to the cell phone and camcorder for taking pictures.A friend ordered a couple of mess kits from me (burp pad and reversible bib), these came out cute:

This tooth fairy pillow is a birthday present (and also one of my best sellers) for the daughter of this creative mom:

Heavenly Healthy Banana Bread

Made this today - it totally lives up to it's name. Not only was this banana bread good (and good for you), it also made my house smell so warm and delicious. I love the slices that have the not-completely-cooked part at the top. Add a little butter and I'm in heaven... (doesn't take much for me these days)

tip: when your bananas get too ripe to eat, don't throw them away. Toss them in the freezer; they will keep for a couple of months. When you're ready to bake, just pull them out, let them thaw out in the peel and add them to your recipe.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Chuck E. Cheese - Where a kid can be a kid and a mom can make an a** of herself

Today we went to a birthday party at the big cheesy mouse house - one of my least favorite places on the planet. The pizza is bad, the place is crowded, noisy, full of germs and unsupervised kids, and I get a little crazy playing skeeball.

Anyone who knows me will tell you I am NOT an arcade type person. I get my kicks by gardening, sewing, cooking, baking--basically anything that lets me create. This is why I cannot explain how I acted today.

When we arrived, child o'mine headed straight for the games. I followed him around, let him choose what he'd like to play, helped if needed and cheered him on. About 20 kiddie games and a whopping 3 tickets later, he is hungry and heads over to the party crowd for pizza. I decide I'll sneak off and try my hand at skeeball; just play long enough to get some tickets so my child can get a prize before we leave. Next thing I know I'm hogging two lanes, hootin' and hollering every time I hit anything above 10 and wont let my 4 YEAR OLD throw one of my balls (I think I even told him, "Not now honey, Mama needs a new pair of shoes!") . The kid standing next to me is saying, "Wow, she's really good!" and I'm all, "Yeah, I played a lot of skeeball when I was a kid." I was totally embarrassing myself but too caught up in the skeeball rush to realize it.

As soon as we left and re-entered the real world, I suddenly became aware of my actions at the skeeball lanes and was a bit disgusted. I felt like I needed a hot shower, but since we were so far from home I did the next best thing. I strapped my sweet boy in his car seat, drove through the parking lot to the big giant book store and went inside to
regain my dignity read books with my son. After a few chapters of Frog and Toad are Friends and Little Bear, all was right with the world. I think we will be out of town for the next birthday party at the big cheesy mouse house...

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Potty Talk

I read a hysterical post on a blog I love this morning, which prompted me to share my recent experience with the same scenario.

Child o'mine and I made a trip to Target yesterday and this is the conversation that took place in the bathroom:

(child) "Mommy, why do you have to sit down while you pee?"
(me, whispering) "I'll tell you later, honey."
(child) "Oh, I know. You have to sit down while you pee because your penis is inside you."
(me, I got nothing for that one)
(child) "Wow, Mommy. You sure are peeing a lot!"
(me, in my head) we are NEVER going to this Target again!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Let Freedom Ring (while you're eating an icky pie)

I love the 4th of July and everything it represents. I am always proud to be an American and thankful to live in this free country, but the 4th allows me to force ask my family to wear matching red/white/blue flag adorned clothing, bake apple pie, load up on fireworks and not look too much like a nerd. (Thank you to Jimmy Buffet's Sirius channel for reminding our house throughout the day to take a moment and think of our troops who put their lives on the line for our freedom - they deserve our thanks, thoughts, and prayers.)

This year we were invited to a friend's house for a BBQ and swimming - a great time was had by all. I baked two pies to bring - one was a triumph old fashioned apple from one of my favorite cookbooks and the other was a hugely disgusting not so good cherry pie that I will never bake again (here's a tip: don't make a recipe for the first time that you're serving to guests). I think it was a combo of too much sugar and vanilla extract that made this pie awful. Plus, I used arrowroot starch for the first time as the thickener. Could that have altered the taste? The pie certainly looked lovely (looks can be so deceiving); I made the top crust using different sized star cutouts and placed them in a lattice fashion. It baked up beautifully but I noticed it never quite had that cherry pie smell.

When we were cutting it, I sneaked a bite and then I knew - this pie had to be the worst cherry pie I've ever eaten. So while the fireworks were taking place and kids were running around with sparklers, apple pie was served to all and the cherry pie got pushed aside. I was not about to ruin such a great day with such an icky pie (that's my freedom of choice, right?)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Oh where oh where has my marital bed gone

Great White Hunter and I share a pretty comfy king size bed, but lately the whole marital bed thing has gone to pot. We have a 75 lb. chocolate lab "puppy" who has outgrown her crate, decided her lovely doggie bed just ain't cutting it, and some how ends up on our bed each night. Just after we've crawled into bed, she jumps up and is all, "OK Mom and Dad, good night!" but we quickly shoo her off and she obeys. She acts all cute curled up on her bed until we've drifted off into dream land, then makes her way back on to our bed (very quietly I might add, because she never wakes us up in doing so, which isn't easy for a 75 lb dog). So every morning I awake feeling more like a pretzel scrunched between a snoring husband and a snoozing dog. What's wrong with this picture?

King size bed good, not good with dog and husband. No room for wife to stretch out. Wife not happy.

About two nights ago, my sweet child decided he's scared of his room and doesn't want to sleep in his bed anymore; wants to sleep with Mommy and Daddy (and the flippin dog, too). This really came out of nowhere - kind of blind sided me because I thought I was going to escape this phase. The bedtime ritual has gone from teeth brushing and story reading to checking under the bed and in the closet, spraying the windows with ghost and monster repellent and calling on the angels to guard and protect (child o'mine thinks this only works if I chant and do funky wiping motions while "applying the repellent").
Despite my best efforts to create a ghost and monster-free room, the child still wants to sleep with us. Great White Hunter, God love him, gives in every time. Now our comfy king size bed for TWO seems more like that bed in The Napping House story, except Mommy ain't sleeping.
Good grief.