Wow! It's been a while! I keep meaning to blog, but as usual there has been a ton going on! Last week was insanely busy. I can't even REMEMBER everything we did. I know that I had an appointment with my midwife (IUD Check) last Wednesday.
Last Friday we took Ardyn to the last Sheffield Homecoming.
She and Evan each got an armband and she LOVED the rides. We decided not to send her to school that day so that she could go during armband day, and it was worth it.
I was afraid that she would try to stand up during a ride, so we started with the cars, and it went well, we then migrated to the train (with daddy) and the carousel (with daddy) and then grabbed some lunch. After that she wanted to slide, and so Evan took her on the BIG slide. She LOVED that and was already heading back up the stairs before Evan knew what hit him. She also rode the ladybugs, and despite my fear, she rode the airplanes. I was afraid because they went up in the air, that if she DID decide to stand up, she would fall out and break her neck. Evan was telling me that they were only like 4.5 feet in the air, and I understood that, but there were metal stakes and all kinds of things she could fall ONTO and crack her head or something. I was a lot worried. Especially when you see that there were no HARNESSES but just a silly rope that she could bypass (and tried to) in a second. But I told her not to touch the rope in the "that's a life threatening scenario" voice, and she abided. Luckily there were several chunky kids on the ride, and the weight limit was too much for the planes, and they could only spin and would not raise up off the ground. Hallelujah! Someone was looking down on us that day!
That night Ardyn and I sat on the porch and she strung fruit loops onto shoelaces, to practice hand-eye coordination. that was fun, because she could barely string one without putting 5 more in her mouth. Hilarious. Lots of Pics of that on Flickr, but I won't post any here because she is just wearing her diaper. While she was stringing, I made some Kick Ass Meatball and Orzo soup, from Rachel Ray's Yum-O Kids Cookbook. Ardyn loves meatballs, and it was the first time I had made them, or this recipe. It was really good.
On Saturday we had the Baker Family Reunion, and played at the park.
We got a great family picture taken too.... just under a tree at the end of the day.
I also took this cute pic of Ardyn IN the tree, because she kept insisting that she wanted to climb it "like a monkey!"
Then that night, I got a BABYSITTER! Whoo! Like a real teenager that you pay and everything. Of course Tess is Evan's cousin, but still. It was great for me. I went to see Evan's band play at the Sunset Ridge MX track. It was Beautiful out! My sister Liz met me there and it was really a relaxed evening, sitting in our chairs outside listening to the music. I was especially happy because when they adjusted their mikes to be a little louder and the guitars to be a bit softer, I could actually hear Evan singing. Normally if I couldn't see his mouth, I wouldn't be able to pick him out. But this time I could hear his voice and recognize it and it was really cool.
Both Kids were sleeping peacefully when I got home. Awwww. When Ardyn woke up the next morning she said "I gots Tess and Jeremy! Tess went home!" It was so cute. Tess brought her boyfriend Jeremy with, and he has lots of little sisters, so it was nice to have him helping Tess. Sunday morning I took the kids to breakfast at Grandma Mona's house, for the usual "after the reunion" meal. I thought they were eating at 10:30, but we got there just at 10:30 and everyone was done eating already. But they had enough food leftover for Ardyn and I to eat, and it was nice to see the family again. After visiting for a while, we went to my parents' house and hung out all afternoon, and stayed for supper. The highlight of my night was when Dad needed to go pick up the 4-wheeler in the barnyard, and so he needed someone to shuttle him down in the cow truck. I offered, and discovered that the cow truck is not only old, but is also a stick (which I haven't driven since my FS Truck back in 1997!) and that it is very difficult to get into gear, AND that I was going to get to put it into 4WD in order to cross a very wet ditch. Awesome. I was going to drive the 4-wheeler but Dad made a good point when he said that I was going to get really muddy on the 4-wheeler across the ditch, and although I was game, he said "Drive the truck!" He laughed when I killed it twice, but driving it across the ditch in 4WD was awesome fun. I was so sure I was going to get it stuck and we'd have a bunch of work on our hands... but it went fine. I have gotten a few 4WD trucks stuck in my lifetime. LOL. I wanted to take Ardyn with (we were driving in the pasture at like 5 MPH) but my mom was like "you will NOT be able to hold on to her and it will be a jostling ride!" So we decided to leave both kids with grandma during the adventure. But when she's older, she's totally going to participate in those things!
Yesterday was a pretty exciting day. My mom came over and went with us to get haircuts, and watch the kids while I got mine cut. I decided at the last minute to cut it all off, and it turned out GREAT! Ardyn got a trim, her first haircut. The plan was to stop all her hair from constantly falling in her eyes, and she got a few bangs cut and then some layers cut into the top of her hair so that if it DOES fall forward, it won't be in her eyes all the time.
This is a relief to me, because I had to "do" her hair every single day, and it was inevitable that at least once a day I would have to redo it (if it were a ponytail or a clip, only pigtails stood a chance at staying in until bedtime.) This is so nice, since her hair is curly, it's just "spritz, comb, scrunch, and GO!" I love it and we have had lots of good comments, so I think it was the right decision.
We took a ton of pictures, and when Kelly took the cape off her, Ardyn asked her to put it back on, and then spent the next 15 minutes or so running around the salon like a super-hero.
It was too cute, because I don't think I ever really made a big deal about WHO was cutting her hair, but we did tell her to "tell Kelly Thank You!" and "Say goodbye to Kelly" and that night when Evan got home he said "Ardyn who cut your hair?" and she thought for a minute and said "Kelly!" Man her memory is astounding! More on that in a minute....
I did mine for the first time today, and it is SO much quicker to wash and dry, and style, I totally forgot how EASY short hair can be. And right now, Easy does it! It's all about survival of the fittest around here. And I have been loving the fact that I actually have time to put on makeup and moisturizer if I so choose, because I have more time in my routine when I don't have to spend 15 minutes blow drying my hair!
After haircuts, we came home and decided that we needed to go to Wal-Mart that night. Daddy needed deodorant, and Ardyn needed Rice Milk. Of course, the last two times I had been to the local Wal-Mart, they were out of rice milk. Again. So We tried the store one more time, and at least found (with the help of a grocery employee) the place where it is now (they remodeled the whole store) and discovered that they had a case or two in the back, but it was stacked 6 pallets deep and they couldn't get to it for us. Argh. At least the employee was helpful, although I think it was a little reluctant on his part. So then we had to DRIVE another 25 minutes to the next Wal-Mart to get the milk. I decided to call in advance to make sure they had it in stock. I knew EXACTLY where it was located in that store and they always have it on the shelves, but I didn't want to make a drive with both kids at like 6 pm and find out that it was sold out. When I called, the woman who answered the phone asked what I needed, and I told her I needed to talk with someone in grocery to see if they had a specific item in stock. She was rather rude, and said "What Item?" and I said "Well, it's called 'Rice Dream' and it's a shelf-stable organic milk." and she immediately said "We don't sell anything like that." and I said "Um, yes you do, and I buy it every time I am there, and I can tell you exactly what it costs and where it is located in the store." Silence. "Oh. Okay, hold on." And I proceeded to wait for like 10 minutes on hold and she came back and said "Yes we do carry it." and I said "I know that you CARRY it. I want to know if you have it in STOCK and I need to know if you have a SPECIFIC Size and style in stock." She was all "Well, what is it?" and I said "It's Organic, Enriched, and it absolutely CAN NOT be vanilla or any other flavor. And it is a 64 ounce carton and it's about $3.84" Silence. (not as smart as you thought you were, huh rude lady?)
Ends up that after all that, they had it. So we made the drive. And turns out it was worth it, because I happened across a chair pad for the Rocking Chair that I got for mother's day, and I had yet to find one that would fit the chair, was neat enough for my tastes, and had a hook for hanging and ties to attach to the chair, and ALSO was only $15.
Okay, now back to the memory thing. I have now noticed (abut two weeks ago) that Ardyn can recall colors and other details of things, even if they are not in front of her. In the past, she could tell me what color ANYTHING was, but she had to be able to look at it. Now she can tell me what color things are from memory, and even if she only saw them briefly, and even if it was a few days ago. They don't have to be visible at the time I ask her the color.
We have been talking with her about potty training. I have been sewing the training pants. Problem is, she still seems to have no idea that she's going to go (#1 oe #2) until she has already gone, and even then she rarely tells me. She has NEVER told me she is wet. She only tells me she has pooped if it is burning her (dairy allergy) and she also can't pull her pants DOWN (although she did show us that she can pull training pants UP on her own.) Although I know that she completely "gets" the concept of pottying, knows all the steps, and what to do.... I can't very well potty train her until she can help warn me that she has to go. AND although some people use elimination communication, and do the "sit them on the potty at regular intervals throughout the day" that doesn't really work for us. One, because I don't really feel like doing that because I want HER to be ready, not just ME.... and Two, because I have a baby that is two months old and I can barely remember to change diapers of two kids on schedule, let alone remind my child to sit on the potty all day long, and undress and redress her each time, and hope that the baby doesn't need anything (like a boob) in those time frames. So I have decided that we will talk about potty training, continue to read the books, and sit on the potty when she asks to, and just see what happens and when she is ready.
I have training pants, and side snapping training pants that I have made, AND pull ups that were handed down to me from Ava and Anya, AND several pair of underwear that I got when I had a JCPenney $10 off coupon about 6 months ago. Last night when we were in Wal-Mart, I see the CUTEST Underwear have hit the shelves. SO cute. There are some adorable Sesame Street ones with Elmo and Zoe, and some super cute My Little Pony, and some Dora. But they are like $8-10 a pack, and then I see that there are little THREE PACKS of undies for like $3.94 a pack. And they have DORA! And they have Little Mermaid (She's all about Mermaids right now, and her 2nd Birthday is going to be a mermaid theme.) So I grabbed the Mermaid ones to stash away for a birthday gift, and I grabbed the Dora ones as motivation, and showed them to her. I said "look at these PRETTY Dora Underwear for big girls! Look at the Ruffles and the Sparkles on them! And look! There's BOOTS! Neat!" She looked at them wide-eyed. I said "When you are a big girl, and you poop and pee in the potty, you can wear these pretty big girl underwear with Dora on them! Won't that be Cool?" She was silent, but I could see the wheels turning. I left it at that and we went on our merry way.
This morning in the bathtub, she looked at me and said "Last night I pooped in the potty." with the straightest face you ever did see. And I said "You did? Because I was with you all night and I never saw you poop in the potty...." and she kinda looked like "damn, my mom is on to me." and that was all she said.
Later Today when we were in the van, she was just back there chattering up a storm to herself, paying no attention to me. I heard her say, out of the blue, "I gonna be a Big Girl and poop in the potty and I'm gonna wear Dora Underwears!" I was like Oh. My. God. She totally knows what's up! And I desperately WISHED that she would have the bodily control and the knowledge that she needs to go, so that we could actually WORK on potty training! Oh how I wished! (hold that thought, because as all things in my life are ironic, we will come back to this in a moment!)
So. Today I wanted to get up and get outside ASAP if it wasn't raining, because I knew it was GOING to rain at some point, and I wanted desperately to get some yard work done while Ardyn and Marek were both in good moods and able to self-entertain themselves. So as soon as they got up (9:30ish per usual) we got dressed, ate a quick breakfast, and went right outside. Ardyn played, Marek swung in his swing, and I spent a couple of hours digging sod out. I am clearing out a strip about 2 foot wide between the fence and the sidewalk, across the whole front of the fence. After clearing about 1/3 of the sod out, I put down my landscape plastic, and realized that I needed mulch, AND landscape staples. I talked to Evan and he suggested that when it rained, we would run to Menard's and get the mulch that we needed. So right after that conversation, I started to nurse Marek in the rocking chair under the big maple tree, and Ardyn was playing happily in the sandbox, and it started to rain. I was able to finish nursing on that one side, because the tree is so dense that we couldn't even feel the rain for a while. Then we all came inside and I started the tub, and Ardyn and I took baths and got cleaned up and dressed, and then we all took off to visit Daddy at work, and go on to Menard's for mulch. We got our 6 bags of mulch. I chose Red Cedar to match the brick on the house. I had a hard time because once I got there I started to waver and wonder if I should get Gold, to match the fence instead. I thought I wanted red, but then I wasn't sure. So I texted Evan for an opinion. No answer. So I texted Mom. She said "Brown like Dirt" and I was like NO that is not an OPTION! and so she came back with Red, and that's what I decided on. Decisions Decisions. My luck the red will all be washed out in no time anyway. But mulch was on sale and with 9 bags for like $14, so what. I also got the patio blocks to put under our storage bench, and they were also on sale, for more than $1 a piece cheaper than last week. And then I saw that the recycled rubber tree rings (mulch rings) were on sale for almost half price, so I got two of them as we had talked about last time we were at Menard's. And I got more Tiki Torch Fuel. I like using the citronella to keep the bugs out of the yard, because then I don't have to put bug spray on a 2 month old baby and 21 month old toddler who rubs EVERYTHING in her eyes.
Anyway. Long story short, I was going to go to the breastfeeding meeting tonight with Marek, but once I got home and started unloading everything, and it was SO nice out, and it had dried up outside from the rain... I just knew that I couldn't go to an indoor meeting when I had so much to do outside and new things to work with, and it is likely it will rain at least two more days this week. So I stayed home. And I dug out all the rest of the sod by hand, and laid all the landscape plastic, AND stapled it down, AND marked the locations for all the hostas that I will put there, AND spread all the mulch, AND shoveled up all the piles of dug sod, AND Swept the sidewalks off afterward. And yes I have a blister from digging. And Yes it was totally worth it.
So after all of that yard work, Ardyn was starting to get cranky and it was getting dark and her bedtime was upon us. She wanted to rock in the rocking chair outside on my lap. I took her in to change her, and discovered that she had pooped (who knows when) and didn't tell me (again.) and again I silently wished that she could just COMMUNICATE with me. I said "Ardyn, you have to tell mommy when you are poopy so I can change you. Then your butt won't get sore!" and she said "Owie! I pooped!" and I said "Tell mommy when you have to poop and we can go in the potty! Or at least tell me that you have a dirty diaper so I can change you!" I was so frustrated and felt so bad for her poor bum! So we went outside and we were rocking, and she asked me to sing to her, so I was singing her a few songs. Now I stop mid verse and have her finish out the verses or insert words on the more complicated songs that she is starting to pick up. She can sing things like "Row Row Row your boat"; "It's raining, it's pouring"; "Itsy Bitsy Spider"; Twinkle Twinkle Little Star"; and "Ring around the Rosies." But longer songs that I learned from my years in girl scouts, she just likes to insert certain words for me. It's too cute. We were rocking and Marek was in his little travel swing at our feet. She said "Mommy, I's really Thirsty! Ardyn wants to drink Mommy's Milk" and she tried to lift up my shirt. MAN is she smart. I said "Who drinks mommy's milk?" And she said "Marek. But Ardyn is REALLY Thirsty!" and I just had to giggle. She kept trying to lift up my tank top. I said "Do you even remember how to drink Mom's milk?" and she said "I's really Thirsty!"
Then just a few seconds later she said "I pooping!" and I said "Are you pooping?!" and she said "I hasta poop in the potty!" and I said "Let's GO!" and we grabbed Marek, in his swing, and struggled up the steps and through the door and I thought there was no way in HELL that if she really did have to go, we could make it there on time. I also thought it was probably just a false alarm since she had JUST Pooped her once a day poo.... and so we ran to the bathroom and I took off her diaper and she sat right down and looked all full of concentration, and she PEED! Instantly! I was so proud I squealed so loud and said "YOU DID IT!!!! YOU PEED IN THE POTTY!!!!" and she was so excited she covered her eyes! LOL. This is the first time that she has peed on the potty because she TOLD me, not because I either knew she had to go, or just had her sitting there for practice!" I was so excited! We did our routine, and then we got right on the phone and called both Daddy and Grandma Deb to share the news. She actually talked to both of them on the phone, another new skill, since she usually will only listen. She said to Grandma "I poop in potty!" She got a star sticker on her pajamas and we read her potty book before bed to drive the point home. AND we talked about the Dora underwear, which I hope to show her again tomorrow as a reminder, in case she needs one. This is the most exciting sign yet that she is almost there!
A cute pic of Marek making his "don't mess with the milk supply" face.... when the camera invades on his territory while he is nursing...
So, That's what's new. There are TONS of pictures on Flickr of the haircuts we both got, and of the family, and of the reunion, and the yard work I accomplished today, AND of the Homecoming and Ardyn riding all the rides. Stop over there and check them out if you are interested! And have a great night!