Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy New Year

I was accused of being a scrooge last night as I started AND finished the process of packing up Christmas. Usually, I wait until the New Year.... at least. But not this year. I got motivated... and when that happens (only once in a blue moon), WATCH OUT! Anyway, the lack of Christmas crap everywhere is giving me a false sense of order in my house. While my house is still in shambles, the sudden absence of all the additional Christmas clutter makes it seem so clean and tidy. Almost empty. I know it seems this way every year after we put all the decorations away. Don't worry, give it another day and it will start to appear as messy as usual again!

The boys are sick. Again. Mainly just buggers, lots of buggers, and this hacking cough. I am actually surprised that it took until now for Dylan and I to catch it. Chase has had this cough for over a week now and he isn't very respectful about using his elbow or hand to shield the mucus spray. The germs inevitably get everywhere. I am sure I don't feel nearly as bad as the boys do. Their coughs are of the hearty, rattly variety that make me wince when they get going and can't stop. I luckily am only partially congested. But it isn't coming out my nose or dripping down my throat. Strange - huh? There must just be a ball of snot lodged somewhere between the back of my throat and the the back of my nose. It has rendered my taste buds useless, and makes me sound like I am talking and plugging my nose, all at the same time. It's not coming out either. I have tried! Using my brother's terminology, all day I have been trying to "Hack up a Loogie." I am wondering now if anyone, other than my brother, has ever used this phrase??? I remember when I was probably about ten, my brother taught me the cool expression and then proceeded to show me how to do it. "You gotta get all the phlem, from waaaayyyy down in your throat, hack it all up and then spit it out! There.... now you have "Hacked a Loogie!" Gotta love brothers. I can only hope that my little ones will teach each other such valuable, life-long lessons. Ah-hum... I suppose that's enough talk about mucus.

On to the point of this post.... to tell everyone Happy New Year. I mean it... as in, It better be!

I have to admit that I am not particularly sad about putting the year 2008 to bed. It hasn't been the best one ever. So, I optimistically look forward to a New Year and HOPE that 2009 will bring some brighter tomorrows. I will part with some random "personal goals" for 2009:

-I NEED to work on getting organized. If I don't, I am afraid that it at this point next year we will be wading, knee deep in junk mail, catalogs, Chase's artwork, and other random clutter.
-Stop whining about how out of shape I am and actually start doing something about it.
-Go to bed earlier so I can get up earlier and squeeze in some treadmill time before the boys wake up.
- Take the time to really thank my friends and family for all the nice things they do. Would it kill me to send out a thank-you card every once in a while?
-Floss. EVERY day. Not every third day or every-other day.
-Make a budget and stick to it. If we ever hope to save enough for college or to retire comfortably some day, this is a must!
- Learn how to use my camera. I am soo envious of good picture takers!!
- Play & teach more. I think they would both really benefit from some mental stimulation that didn't come from Noggin.
-Have more patience! Count to ten before blowing my lid. Try to un-clench my teeth when communicating with Chase. No more eye-rolling (yes I do the eye-rolling around here... not a very good example.) Find a constructive way to deal with Chase's outbursts.
-BE HAPPIER! Life is short. I know I will miss these days when they are little. I want to really enjoy it!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

PCSD (Post Christmas Stress Disorder)

My parents escaped my house and headed to my sister's for a few nights of peace, quiet and R&R. I really can't blame them... it has been a struggle over here the past couple of days. The lethal combination of Santa's arrival, grandma & grandpa's arrival, another cold (yes, another cold is circulating around my house), probably not enough sleep, too much sugar, and lots of deviations in the routine has turned Chase into a child that I don't even recognize. Well, I do recognize him. Fortunately, we just haven't seen this side of him recently. Until now. Why does he do this when Grandma and Grandpa visit? Honestly, things had been so good for the past couple weeks. I even commented to Dave a couple nights ago, "I think we turned a corner with Chase." Har har!!! We have had so many tantrums and time-outs over the past two days... I have lost count. I keep trying to explain to my parents that he really isn't like this all the time. (They know, but I want them to know - ya know....) His behavior is stressing me out and I am lashing out at everyone. Okay, well, mainly just Dave. Anyway, sensing an all out melt-down coming on, my mom offered to babysit and sent Dave and I out last night for bowling and beer (lots of beer.) Guess what??? Chase was an angel the whole time we were gone! All it took was to get mom & dad out of the picture. Hmmm, why do WE bring out the worst in OUR children? My mom is probably wondering this same question! (That was meant to be funny! BTW - My parents had planned on staying with my sis for a few nights during their stay. My children didn't actually DRIVE them away. But, I bet that they are a tensy bit relieved to have a break from the whining and tantrums;)

Anyway, his attitude was spiraling out of control. (That sounds dramatic.... but it sorta was.) So, I had to do something BIG, something that will really strike a cord with him, something to make him understand that disrespectful behavior does NOT go unpunished in our house. The only thing I could think of was to ground him to his room. Yup, it is not a proud mommy moment to have to ground your three year old. It was only for two hours and I sat in there with him, staring blankly at the wall and trying to be completely unemotional as he raged, screamed and cried for a solid hour and a half. Are we going to be getting therapy bills in 20 years for the cruelty we subjected him to? I am just keeping my fingers crossed that it actually worked. Maybe, tomorrow will be a better day. It has to! Right???

I finally uploaded our bowling pics... thought I would attach them below!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

A Very Merry Christmas


We spent Christmas Eve at Me'Me and PaPa's (my in laws.) It was a nice evening of dinner, present opening and Church service.


Chase woke up Christmas morning and was so excited that Santa came. He actually pulled one of the big boxes up the stairs to our room before we were even out of bed. He was very anxious to get the ball rolling on the present opening business.

Okay Mom, can we start opening now!!!






Santa brought a couple of big trucks for Chase and a ride on toy for Dylan. But, a couple of hours later, there was a ring at the door bell. He forgot to leave a couple presents, so he came back!!! It was sooooo exciting. Okay, well, I thought it was exciting. Chase was a little shy, but he actually did better than I thought he would. He has adamantly refused ANY contact with Santa for the last 3 years (or at least since he has been old enough to voice his own opinions. ) I suppose he can't complain when he is bearing gifts - right???



Dylan wasn't much interested in Santa.


A true Christmas miracle happened! My parent's flew from North Idaho, in the middle of the snow storm, into Denver and then onto Chicago and actually MADE IT. After all the media coverage of travel woes and cancelled or delayed flights, I wasn't optimistic that we would be spending Christmas together. But, they did it. Their luggage didn't. It got here only three hours later. Really, I am still a little shocked that they are here. It was a great day and we all shared a nice dinner...together!


Auntie Beth and Joe.

Finally, the third and final round of presents were opened. Phew.... what a busy, busy holiday. Chase and Dylan were both totally tuckered out from all the excitement. My parents are visiting this week. It is so nice for the boys to have Grandma and Grandpa here to play with... well, to entertain at least!! I hope everyone else had a great holiday.