Friday, December 30, 2011

Quick 5, Kansas City Style

Just an observation: the sun comes up later in Kansas City.  Makes getting up at 6:15 feel like it's really 4:00am. 

1.  Joya's little fever was actually a bit more serious than I first thought.  Thursday night her fever spiked again, which prompted me to call a 24-hour nurse hotline at midnight, just to make sure I didn't need to take her to an ER.  The nurse assured me I didn't, and shortly after the call, Joya finally fell asleep.  Then, feeling like the worst mother in the world, I packed her into the car at four in the morning to drive her to Kansas City.  My reasoning was I could take care of a sick baby just as well in Kansas City as I could in Denver, but it is so lame to travel when you're sick.  Well, she slept the whole way there, waking only when we stopped for food or gas.  And then on Christmas Eve, I had had enough.  I took her to urgent care, where the kind doctor checked her out.  She deemed it a virus, which you all know you can't do anything about.  So we just let her take 3 and 4 hour naps.  And let her sleep 12 and 13 hours at night.  And finally, the day after Christmas, she was back to her cheery self. 

2.  Christmas was a hit around here.  During present time, we learned that we had to let Alaina go at her own pace.  It seems that we assume that most kids want to plow through their presents at high speed.  So as soon as she finished opening a present, we'd have another one waiting for her.  She got a little upset that we weren't letting her play with the gifts she opened, so we slowed down.  Really, that was fine with us, just a little surprising.  She must be old beyond her years.

3.  The girls LOVED playing with their Aunt Mindy and Uncle Josh.  Uncle Josh spent hours and hours as Alaina's horsey.  And Aunt Mindy and Uncle Josh have fun phones that have fun games like Angry Birds and Squish the Ants.  Even Joya was able to play Pop the Balloons with Aunt Mindy.  It was a sad day when they left to go back home.

4.  And just a few random pics from the past week:
Joya slept the whole ride.  Alaina stayed awake the whole ride, except for this brief 30-minute nap, just as we came into Kansas City.
Gramma and Grampa Kimble found a fun car that Joya LOVES to crawl into.
This turkey hat sings "Turkey in the Straw."  Good times.
Joya is also a big fan of the princess castle from Gramma and Grampa.  If you can't find her, look in there.
Alaina had fun making desserts with Gramma and Grampa
Storytime with Gramma
 5.  And now, on to one of my favorite times of year.  I don't know why I like New Years so much.  It's a little lame.  Not sure why a new calendar signals such a feeling a freshness and newness.  But it does.  And while I'm excited about it, I'm trying not to stress out about it too.  Because starting January 3rd I have to hit the ground running with the new position as the nursery coordinator, and starting up the MOPS group on January 9th.  I'm trying to live by the philosophy that I'll get done what I can, and the rest will have to wait.  I'll keep you posted on how that works out for me.

Happy New Year!  Happy New Year, some more!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Quick 5

It's been a crazy, busy, good and not-so-good week before Christmas around here. 

1.  We painted cookies!  I know it seems like a little, mundane thing, but I am so proud of myself.  It turns out that I'm not really a fan of making huge messes, and painting cookies is definitely a mess.  But I need to get over myself so my girls can have fun experiences and memories, so I got it all together.  It was a mess, but one I was pleased with.
You can't keep a girl from licking her fingers while painting cookies
I'm not brave enough to give a 14-month-old frosting to paint her own cookies, so Joya just enjoyed eating one while we did the decorating

2.  Then on Tuesday we drove down to Colorado Springs to making graham cracker gingerbread houses with Aunt Jamie and Naomi.   My mom was able to come, and it was loads of fun.  I brought WAY too much candy for two little girls to make houses, but I'm not sad about that. 

 3.  A little holiday cheer for you, performed by Alaina.  (This happens to be her favorite Christmas carol.  I don't know why, but it's the one she sings all the time.)

4.  We kind of had two not-so-good things happen this week, but happen at the best time possible.  First, on Wednesday at midnight, Joya woke up with a fever.  I gave her tylenol, but then she woke up whining every hour until 4:00.  Then the whole day she would run a fever, and the medicine would bring it down slightly but the fever would spike back up again about the time for her to have more medicine.  It was like that all day.  She actually acted okay until the end of the day, when she had just had it.  She didn't nap too well either, so she was in bed at 6:30.  That ties into the second not-so-good thing which was the major snow dump we got that night.  I ran out to get her some infant ibuprofen so I could do the alternating thing at about 8:00.  It was snowing pretty heavily and it was pretty slick out there.  Coming home was worse, since I was heading north and driving right into the blowing snow.  I haven't been that scared in a long time.  I probably should have sent Lee, but there are so many baby medications out there, and I knew exactly what I was looking for, so I thought I could do it.  I made it home safe and sound, but only because I didn't go faster than 20 mph.  It was worth it, though, because around 10:30 when Joya woke up again I gave her the ibuprofen and she then slept solid for the next 8 hours.  She woke up on Thursday still wiped out, but without a fever.  The good I see in both of those things, however, was that they happened on Wednesday and Wednesday night and not Thursday.  Any later in the week and we might have had to alter our plans.

5.  Which brings us to our plans.  Today we are driving to Missouri to spend Christmas with Lee's family.  I've been stalking the interstate forecast, and it shows nothing but sunshine and 0% chance of precipitation the whole way.  That combined with my incredibly gracious and generous parents letting us use their car is going to make for a nice little road trip.  Well, all that and John Denver and the Muppets will make for a nice road trip.

Merry Christmas!  It's pretty incredible that God chose to come to be with us, so no matter what is going on, we definitely have a reason to celebrate.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Quick 5

1.  Last Friday was Lee's work Christmas party.  We had a great time last year, and we were looking forward to this year.  They had planned a murder mystery, and those are always intriguing.  (Side note: Lee says he's been to two other murder mysteries and they were both really lame.  He boldly says this, even knowing full well that I planned one of them in college.  Let's forget the fact that it was lame; the point is it's REALLY hard to plan banquets.  So we went to this one with as little expectations as possible.)  I'll spare you most of the many details, but I do have a couple of things to say.  First, the company that put it on was REALLY good.  Very entertaining.  Second, I WON!!  At the end of the night, you had to fill out this form saying who you thought was the murderer, and most importantly why.  I totally nailed it.  They gave us clues throughout the night that we were able to look over, and when I turned in my paper I had no dreams that I would have won.  But then the host read the winning paper and I thought it sounded a lot like what I had written, and lo and behold.  I won a water bottle (lame, but Lee uses it), a bottle of wine (too bad I don't like wine; I gave it to my folks), and four tickets to a comedy club in Denver.  Comedy clubs aren't really my thing, but we're going to give it a try.  Anyway, winning was pretty cool.

2.  The Christmas program was last Sunday and it went off fabulously.  I could not be more pleased with how the whole thing worked out.  The music was great; I watched most of the services and did not get tired of the music once.  The kid part was hilarious.  I'm still a little sad that I didn't let Alaina participate, but it was still fun to watch.  And the drama went off without a hitch.  Seriously, we hit our sweet spot and pulled off all four performances nearly flawlessly.  We rehearsed so much, but I still wasn't sure how it would all go, especially since for the final few rehearsals we made TONS of mistakes due to nerves or whatever.  I just prayed the night before that God would be honored, and would honor all the work we had put into it.  He truly came through for us on that one.

3.  Alaina was able to watch the program, since my parents came to one of the services.  She sat with them through the whole thing.  Three things stuck out to her: 1.) At one point, the angel puts duct tape on the priest Zachariah's mouth.  She of course wanted to know why he would do that.  2.) Another time, I, as the narrator, yell at the angel to "Knock It Off!!"  Alaina pointed it out, and then wanted to spend the rest of the day telling various things (her sister, her toys) to knock it off.  I finally told her that she could only tell people to knock it off when she's a mother.  And 3.) After Mary has told Joseph what is going to happen, she tries to hug him.  Joseph has not come to terms with it yet, so doesn't let Mary hug him.  Alaina was very touched by that moment, wondering why "he wouldn't hug her."  I love that she was paying attention.

4.  I finally got around to making some Christmas treats this week.  I made these lovely little pretzels that I saw on Pinterest.  Super easy.
Pretzels, Hershey Kisses and M&Ms
And super addictive.  I don't think there have been any scientific studies or anything, but I think the addictive properties of these little guys is right up there near chew and cigarettes. 

5.  Today I am going to make Christmas cookies, and this afternoon I am going to let Alaina "paint" them.  I'm so excited about it; she's going to love it. 

Is your Christmas shopping done? 

Friday, December 9, 2011

Quick 5

This is one of the busiest weeks we've ever had, and yet I'm not sure I have enough to fill 5 today.

1.  The reason it is busy is because of the Christmas program.  Lee is playing guitar, so he's had his practices, and the drama has had their separate practices.  We'll finally all run through it together on Saturday.  While there are still quite a few unknowns as to how it's actually going to all turn out, I'm ready for it.  And ready for it to be over.

2.  On a Christmas program-related note, this year there are a couple of kid numbers in the program.  A note was sent home after Cubbies one day asking for permission and explaining the rehearsal schedule for the kids.  This was sent home in early November, when I was so busy I'm surprised my family got fed.  The practices really involved the kids coming early to Awana, and then a few others.  Well, the fact that I was in charge of the drama kind of had me at my limit, so I decided that Alaina wouldn't participate.  I still feel pretty good about that decision, except for the fact that we always showed up to Awana at the end of the Christmas rehearsal, so Alaina really knows all the songs.  She sings them all the time.  I'm just a little sad because on Sunday she'll be in the nursery while her friends will be in the Christmas program.  She doesn't really know about it, but I'm a little nervous that she's somehow going to find out.  Like, one of the nursery workers will ask her if she's supposed to sing in the Christmas program, and she'll answer "Yes!" because the girl loves to be on stage, and then we'll have to get some things straightened out.  As long as she doesn't realize what is going on, she'll be fine.  They don't do a kid thing every year for Christmas, but I'm hoping there will be something else in the future she can participate in.

3.  I've been waiting and waiting for Joya's face to clear up before we take her one-year pictures.  In October and most of November she had a rash under and around her eyes.  That lead to the taking her off dairy, which lead to soy milk, which lead to the Diaper Rash to End All Diaper Rashes.  And still didn't really clear up the rash.  She's back on milk, and the rash around her eyes is gone.  I have no idea what made it go away.  Now she has a rash around her mouth, which I am 98% sure is due to her paci-sucking at night.  So I'm saying to heck with it, and we're going to have our good friend Leah take her pictures sometime in the next couple of weeks.  The beauty of having Leah do it is the fact that I can load her pictures on a jump drive, bring them home, and practice my photoshopping skills.  The world will never know that Joya always seems to have an unsightly rash on her face at this age.

4.  I want to give a shout-out to Kohl's.  They were doing some promotional thing that I don't really understand, except it involved red pieces of paper that looked like and acted like Kohl's bucks, only you didn't have to spend $50 to get them.  They just handed them out when you made a purchase a week or so ago.  I had two of them, and thanks to their crazy practice of making their price tags way higher than the actual price, I walked away with a nightshirt and six pairs of socks for $5 out of pocket.  I love that store.

5.  Alaina has become a pro at getting up in the night and using the bathroom.  By herself.  There was one night where she needed my help, but only because she was wearing her zip-up footie pjs.  Those are hard for her to manage on her own.  But if I put her in her regular pants/shirt jammies, she can handle it on her own.  I think it's adorable, mostly because I don't ever hear her do it.  I can just see signs in the morning, like the soap in the bathroom is moved to where she uses it, and her door is shut rather than cracked open.  I was starting to get nervous, wondering if we were going to have to venture into letting her sleep in undies soon, which sounds like a disaster to me.  But we're not there yet.  For the longest time, her pull-up was reliably wet every morning.  Now it's unreliably dry.  So I'm waiting for the reliably dry days before we have to cross that bridge.  I'm in no hurry, especially since she can now change out of a pull-up and into her undies on her own every morning. 

Only two weeks left to soak up Christmas!  :)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Quick 5

Friday, eh?  Okay then.

1.  The house is decorated for Christmas.  And Joya has not really messed with the tree.  I'm a little surprised about that, actually.  She's been our destructo, so I was fully prepared for the battle.  I can't decide if this is one of those times where I should have expected the best and not the worst from my girl, or if I simply was prepared and shouldn't let my guard down.

2.  For the first time in my adult life, I truly burned dinner this week.  I was trying to make the crock-pot orange chicken.  You are supposed to coat the chicken in flour and brown it before putting it in the crock pot.  And I totally burned it.  The pan must have been too hot, I must have crowded the chicken, I must not have been working fast enough.  Anyway, I tossed it in the crock pot anyway and added the sauce thinking it wouldn't be that bad.  It was.  The house smelled like burned popcorn for the whole next day.  I believe the recipe is a good one and I'd love to try it again, but this time it just tasted charred.  My family ate it like champs, but it definitely wasn't my best moment.

3.  We finally joined modern society and watched the movie Tangled.  It's our new favorite around here.  Throughout the day, Alaina will act out various scenes.  In the movie, the bad mom calls Rapunzel "dummy" and I've told Alaina it's not very nice.  So of course she feels the need to tell me several times a day that Rapunzel's mom called her that.  I think it's her excuse to say the word as often as she can.

4.  Alaina's newest addiction is playing in the snow.  Yesterday it snowed again, and I happened to see Lee drive up as he came home from work.  I said to the girls, "Daddy's home!"  And Alaina hurried as fast as she could to get her snow clothes.  She knew that Daddy would be shoveling the driveway, and that she would get to go outside.  So I dressed her up.  Lee tells me that she made a snow angel in the driveway.  We're not sure why she chose the driveway and not the lawn.

5.  And some pics from spaghetti night:
Joya enjoyed her dinner...

...while Alaina made "silly" faces (that she taught herself how to make)