Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Tennessee Trek

Once again, I set out for another Evel Knievel, death defying feat.  You may not agree with the direct correlation between a motorcycle daredevil and that of a stay-at-home-mom driving with her two sweet and adorable offspring some 650 miles, ALONE. I beg to differ.  It takes a lot of courage and some deep-rooted craziness to pull off something so "evel."  In all honesty, we fared way better than our last drive.  For once, the sweltering heat was actually a welcome.  Nobody wanted to be out of the coolness of the car for more than 10 minutes at a time.  We feared that our rubber soles would meld with the asphalt and we would never make it to our destination.  Bathroom breaks were short and sweet and we picnicked in the car for lunch at a very nice rest area.  Between stops I threw jerky and gobstoppers behind me and it seemed to calm the giants.  

We made excellent time due to my expert snack packing and port-a-potty
 that by the time we reached my brother's house it was only 6 o'clock!  I initially intended to spend the night like I did previously but since it was still early we threw back a few slices of pie and a couple cold ones and loaded back into the Buick.  Anthony and Hillary were so gracious to have dinner waiting for us and it was such a treat to rest our weary legs and visit with Uncle and "Hill-a-wee".  The second those girls were unlatched they went hog wild from start to finish only scarfing down bits of pizza between rounds.  I think they scared the kin folk a little.  

I would have given in and stayed but I wanted to beat Evel's record and I couldn't bear to hear the words, "Are we at Mimi and Papa's house?" uttered one more time.  Besides it is a mere 2 hour drive from Murfreesboro to Rugby.  By the time we made it to my Mom and Dad's it was around 11:00pm Eastern time.  I thought after a few quick hugs that bedtime would quickly ensue for my little homey's.  Was I ever wrong.  They acted as if they'd been given straight caffeine above any other nutrient for the last 5 hours.  I soon found myself ravenous for the melted cheese on crackers and juice that was intended for the girls and got my second wind.  I don't know how many hours passed until bedtime since it is a little hazy. 
I love going home to visit especially now since I have my own children.  For some reason I adopt this laissez-faire kind of attitude while there.  Probably since my parents take over and it becomes a mini vacay for myself!  They really are the greatest grand-parents a girl could ask for!!  Here are the girls "doctoring" Mimi the morning after.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Bart and "Waven"

Lucky for us, our very best friends, Bart and Raven, have family in Ft. Smith (and lots of friends) so we still get to see them from time to time since they moved to Phoenix a year ago.  We have so much fun with them and so appreciate the quality time we get even though they have TONS of family and friends here.  We went to the new Basil's for dinner and although the dinner wasn't extraordinary, the company was.  I would still recommend it since they have a brand new menu and I loved the ambience.  Thank you for coming to see us Bart and Waven!  We're coming to see you next time around!!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Haley "Left-Eye" Kaiser

For Father's Day, I had the girls "sign" their own cards to Daddy.  Hanna will leave her trademark "H's" all over the card and throw in a few robots.  Haley makes her own little scribbles which makes it so much more personal.  I used to write little sentiments in them myself as if it were coming from the children.  Now that we have two that is just exhausting and completely unnecessary.  Haley took her exciting new task very seriously and while I wasn't looking decided to give herself a new look as well .  We both agreed that it wasn't a good look for her.  Lesson learned, Haley and markers*don't mix.

-Side note- I don't know what is up with Haley's hair in the 2nd photo but I agree it is atrocious.  She has since gotten a new "do".  Pictures coming soon.

*Crayons, play dough, pens, crayons, lipstick, paint, suckers, popsicles..............

Friday, June 12, 2009

Dance 101

I stepped out for a couple hours one night and returned home to find that Hanna had been taught some new dance moves, by none other than Daddy J.  Of course, he taught her all the classic 80's moves that I think will come in very handy during her junior high years and maybe even on into high school.  The first dance and it may not be 100% clear, is the robot, by far my fave.  The very popular sprinkler comes next in the line-up.  The third dance is surely recognizable but I regretfully do not know the name of it.  And last but certainly not least, the girl is churnin' butter.  She loves to make us laugh and now that she has some brand new material, well, she breaks out in dance quite often.  Who knows what our next lesson in "cool" will be.   

Monday, June 8, 2009

I'm a big girl!

Today was Haley's first day at Mother's Day Out, or "school" as we call it.  They really do teach them a lot.  Last night as I was getting her lunch bag ready, sadness washed over me.  Sadness because she is my baby and I had major anxiety about dropping her off and leaving her for 5 hours.  We've been pretty much attached at the hip for the last 16 months.  Then the real sadness set in when I thought about Hanna's first day when she was only 13 months.  How can she be 3 1/2 already??

I think I was the only one with anxiety this morning because Haley seemed giddy all morning long.  Like she new something really fun was about to happen.  She picked up her nap mat and was ready to go!  When we got to her class, she threw her blankie under one arm and puppy under the other and went right on in.  She waved at me and that was it!  She was probably relieved to be getting a break from us and play with other people her age.  I am not sending Hanna to school this summer so she and I can spend one-on-one time together, even if it's just for one day.  I think she really needs that and come this fall, she starts pre-school and life will become a little more hectic.  

We painted pottery with friends and had lunch and went to Target afterwards.  I think Hanna really enjoyed not having to share me for once.  I certainly appreciated tending to one child instead of two for a change.  We looked forward to picking Haley up to see how her first day went.  She loved it, especially music class.  She didn't nap and she didn't eat much of her lunch but she made up for it tonight!  Holy Moses!  I have to share what all she ate for dinner because I am still in shock; corn, green bean casserole, ham, cheese, 1/2 slice of bread, mandarin oranges, cinnamon graham crackers, a banana, strawberries, and some mini marshmallows.  I am glad to see that she is eating well again.  

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

A super fun day at the park


And after.

On Tuesday, my friend Erin and I drove down to Fayetteville for what we thought would be an uneventful romp in the park.  Not so much.  The moment this child laid eyes on the algae pond it was very much apparent by all that she was gettin' in there before the days end.  There must have been a beckoning force from beneath the shallow murkiness.  I've never seen such strong will and determination by a half-pint.  After a little while she seemed to have given up and we went into the little castle to play.  That's where she did her recon work for operation Pondscum.  

We slowly made our way back toward the forbidden waterhole.  Erin and I were standing by the water's edge and I watched Haley walk off in the opposite direction; now I know that was just a ploy.  I looked up at Erin as we conversed and then I heard her shriek.  I immediately looked around and there was Haley stepping right into the water.  I quickly plunged myself in after her but not before she dove on in, head first.  She was soaked from head to toe and was in just long enough for some slime to adhere. 

She was a little shaken up about the incident.......for one whole minute!  Hanna was more shaken up over the ordeal than was Haley.  I was in shock for sometime.  Luckily, I had thrown an extra set of clothes in the car after she sat in a pile of bird doo at another park a few weeks prior.  Thank you sweet Jesus!  A tub of wipes, a bottle of Purell, and an outfit change later, all was well.  I, on the other hand, reeked of gunk water and trudged around in squishy slimy shoes for the day and was happy as a clam to do so!!!

First trip to the pool!

15 month stats

Haley had her 15 month check-up on Monday.  Here is what we found out:

Personality- check.
Attitude- double check.
Growing- yes;  she weighs 21 lbs. 6 oz and is 30 1/2 in.  She is fluctuating a little in the percentiles but is steadily average size for her age.
Healthy- as a horse!
Stubbornness- that would be a YES!

A Day in the Life of Haley-
7:30-8:00- awake and ready for her first meal.  It's best not to delay.  
9:00- heads for my closet to put on her favorite pair of shoes (my pink mary jane crocs) and then to her room to pull blankie & mouse or puppy out of her bed.
9:15- ready for a diaper change; everyday like clockwork.
9:30- pulls a box or bag of something out of the pantry, usually whatever she can reach.  Could be a box of pasta or a box of Goldfish crackers.  She then waves her arms excitedly like she is taking off in flight while I get said snack into a bowl.
9:45- carries snack to every square inch of the house to leave crumbs.  I find remnants of banana and moist graham crackers in fun little hiding spots.
10:30- time to destroy the play kitchen and distribute little plastic spoons & forks upstairs and down.
11:00- makes Hanna mad.
11:15- finds something to put in her mouth that doesn't belong.
11:30- makes Hanna mad again, this time tears are usually involved from both parties.
12:00- lunchtime!
12:30- waddles over to Hanna's table to look for any scraps left behind.
1:00- feeds her babies and takes them for a walk in the stroller.
1:15- makes a couple calls.
1:30 or 2:00- ready for a nap, whew.
4:00 or 4:30- awake and wants out of her room pronto and NEEDS a drink and a snack!
5:00- empties out any drawers in the kitchen within her reach that isn't child-proofed and distributes them all over the kitchen floor.
5:30-6:00- cries while climbing and pulling at my pants while I try to prepare dinner.
6:00- seated in highchair and cramming mouth full.
6:30- walks around with a cookie while the rest of us finish dinner.
6:45- loves to take a bath.
7:00- waddles around with blankie and two animals, smelling so sweet.
7:15- gives everyone night-night kisses and picks out a book for storytime;  we only get through about half of it because she climbs out of the chair with her blankie and goes over to her bed.  
7:30- probably dreaming about marshmallows and shoes.

Monday, June 1, 2009


Once again, our hopes for a sun-filled day was threatened by rain.  On Monday we planned to take H & H  to the Tulsa Zoo.  Excitement was high and the bags were packed!  By the time we got to Gentry, a mere 30 minutes away, the gloom of gray/stormy skies seemed to be settling in for the extent of the weekend.  Can I even express my unabridged disappointment?!? Not without sounding like a spoiled little baby-brat.  

Jason suggested (with WAY too much enthusiasm) that we just stop off in Gentry (after all, we did get a late start). Anyone from NW Arkansas knows the ins and outs of this treasured jewel.  It is a drive-thru safari, if you will.  We have visited way too many times and have gotten a different outcome every single time with our out-of-town guests.

 We tried to visit the petting zoo and see all the cute, cuddly animals (baby bunnies, pot-bellied pigs, monkeys, snakes) while the rain was away but within minutes it seemed to find us so we decided to pile back in the car (after a diaper change and a potty break and many requests for snacks) to make our eventful trek thru the "jungle."  We had many birds make their appearance at our window and plenty of deer, yak, and other wild beasts.  Really the most fun was letting the "littles" ride in our laps up front. They didn't care what type of wild animal they saw begging for food and licking at our windows.  They just loved being a part of the front seat and getting unlimited treats handed their way.   

After our drive through the not-so-exotic-but-kind-of-interesting-safari we stopped at the entrance again because the sun was actually trying to come out.  To ensure that our eldest got the most out of the trip, her sweet Daddy promised her a camel ride and hopped on with her.  Ever since being abruptly thrown off a horse in my younger days do I regretfully decline to mount a 4-legged animal, thank you.  It was the highlight of Hanna's trip and has since told everyone about riding the "cam-bell."  
Mine and Jason's highlight of the trip, and in no particular order;   an unexpected Sonic dinner (yes, first), and arriving home 4 hours earlier than predicted.   Hope your MDW involved less rain.