Sunday, September 28, 2008
I had heard about the little workshops that they do at Lowe's (I think Home Depot does them too), but I had never taken the kids until my friend convinced us to go and now we're hooked! They're twice a month with different projects each time. The kids get a little apron, these ever-so-attractive safety goggles and then some quality time hammering their little hearts out. The best part is that it's free, just register on-line to reserve your space (https://www.lowesbuildandgrow.com/). The only problem is trying to find a place to store all of these little treasures, oh well, the kids love it and they've already got a countdown going until the next project. Jason took them yesterday while I went to my last spin class. It's so weird getting down to "the lasts" before the baby comes. I think the instructor will be glad I'm not going anymore, she's a nervous wreck each time I go (she always points the fan directly at me, brings extra water bottles just for me and asks me like 10 times if I'm okay). She's so worried that I'm going to go into labor during her class, but little does she know, that's the reason I keep going and unfortunately it didn't work any magic. I also had one last girls night this past weekend and my last meal of mexican food. I'm swearing off all mexican food until post-delivery in an effort to avoid any emberassing moments on the delivery table. I also drove my last week of carpool, taught my last YW lesson and I'm hoping today was my last day at church since next week is conference. I'm just getting so excited, it's all I think about (could you tell?)!
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Uggg. These last couple of weeks are the worst. I can't sleep, my ribs are killing me, my feet are swollen and sore by the end of the day, the heart burn is getting really old, I pee every half hour....but the good news is, I'm almost done! (Yes, I realize that I am beyond the cute pregnant stage, so I apologize in advance for the bare belly shot). We're beyond excited to meet this little guy, but I'm also starting to get a little anxiety. I can't believe how much our life is going to change in just a couple of weeks, I'm getting scared for the delivery and I also realized that there is still so much I need to do:
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
"The facts are on the table: eating dinner together every night keeps the doors of communication open. It’s the perfect time and place to reconnect and to show your kids that they are your priority. Sitting across the table is where and when you can find out more about your children’s likes, dislikes, and daily life. Having this information can help you direct your children toward positive activities and behavior, reducing the likelihood that they will get involved with alcohol, tobacco, and/or illegal drugs. Compared to teens that have frequent family dinners, those who rarely have family dinners are three-and-a-half times more likely to have abused prescription drugs or an illegal drug other than marijuana. Girls who have five or more meals a week with their families are one-third less likely to develop unhealthy eating habits, which can range from skipping meals to full-fledged anorexia or abusing diet pills. Parental influence and involvement is an important tool in preventing substance abuse. Regularly sitting down for a meal with your children is one way to connect with them and be involved with what is happening in their lives." (from the US Department of Health and Human Services)
So do those statistics still apply if your family meatimes consist of constantly threatening your 4 year old to eat atleast 5 bites, which usually results in an average of 3 temper tantrums and 3 time-outs and ends with me practically pinning him down and spoon feeding him his minimum of 5 bites? I really hope not, otherwise we are in trouble! Seriously, family meal time should be a happy, relaxed and memorable experience but I find myself dreading it half the time because we go through the same thing night after night. He takes one look at the food and says "I don't like it" and then the fun starts. I refuse to be a short order chef and cater to his particular taste, so there have been many nights that he has gone to bed without eating anything because he refuses to eat what I put on the table (thankfully Kylie is pretty easy going when it comes to food, she's even less picky than I am and can eat steak and shrimp with the best of them--just don't make her get near a bread crust, though). After many frustrating mealtimes I decided to try something new. Each week I let the kids go through my recipe book and pick any meal that they want to put on the menu for that week. When it's their night for the meal they get to be my little chefs and help me cook. So far they have loved it. Even though I'm not too thrilled about eating corn dogs for dinner, it makes it worth it to know that there is atleast one meal I won't have to fight Jayden over eating. They get so excited about being my little chefs and it's been nice spending that one on one time with just them in the kitchen. The first thing Jayden asked when he woke up this morning was if it was his day to cook the noodles (spaghetti noodles with butter and parmesan-he has a thing against spaghetti sauce, and "snake bread"-breadsticks) and he couldn't have been more excited when I told him that it was. So maybe there is hope that my kids won't turn into anorexic druggies afterall.
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Okay, I'm a little creeped out. Some of you probably remember the reason I put my blog on private. About a year ago a girl from the Dominican Republic left a comment on my blog, the comment itself was fine she just said how cute my kids were. I was just uncomfortable with the idea of strangers around the world reading about our family, so I put my blog on private that day. The very next day she wrote me a nasty message on my myspace account about how she couldn't believe that I would put it on private because of the comment she had left and that she thought all Mormons were supposed to be nice. Two things kind of freaked me out about that, first of all she had to have been reading my blog for awhile considering that she knew I was Mormon and the fact that she had gone back and seen that it was on private. The second thing was that somehow she had managed to track down my myspace account. My screen name was just "Jamie" and there are like a million Jamie's, so my guess was that she had been going through my list of links on my blog and found a link to my friend's myspace and saw that I was one of her friends. It was also weird because I went to her blog and myspace account and she used two different names on both sites. We wrote back and forth a couple of times because I kind of wanted to get a feel for who she really was, she claimed to be a Mormon also (part of me wonders if she's just saying that to gain my trust because after looking at her blog and myspace I had serious doubts that she really was). Something else that weirded me out was that she had some Asian fettish type thing going on on her myspace. So that was about a year ago, but with my blog on private I didn't really think about her anymore. Until yesterday. I set up a facebook account like a month ago and wouldn't you know, I get an odd friend request from some girl in the Dominican Republic saying, "Hi jamie. im adding you as my friend,please i hope you accept me.thnks." Once again it's a different name and a different picture, but as soon as I saw it I just got a creepy feeling. I open up her profile and the only thing she has listed there is the fact that she's (supposedly) Mormon (and she only has a couple of friends, all from different countries, except one. He's from Phoenix). I would consider the idea that it was just a coincidence and that she was really some Mormon girl looking to network, but my profile is on private so there's no way that she would know that I'm even Mormon. So I was already having a bad feeling about her when Jason called me and said that he had gotten a friend request on his facebook from the same girl. Now I know for sure it has to be her because what are the chances? There's no way some random girl would know that he was my husband. I just don't get what her deal is, if she really is some young girl in the DR, why does she want to be "friends" with us anyways? Why after a year is she still so interested in our family? Why would she spend so much time trying to track me (and Jason) down? There's got to be a million Jamie Youngs and Jason Youngs out there that she has to sift through before finding us (unless she narrowed her search because she knows we live in Phoenix and that scares me), and who has time for that? Why is she so vague and uses different names on all of her stuff? What if it's really some sicko posing as a young girl? It seriously just leaves me with such an uneasy feeling, I had a hard time sleeping last night because I kept thinking about it. I've got everything on private, but is there something more I should do? Ugggg, I feel sick.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
My mom is an AMAZING seamstress. She can make anything from quilts to blessing dresses to bridesmaid dresses to purses to, well, pretty much anything she puts her mind to. Unfortunately that sewing gene fell a little too far off the tree when it came to me (I still make valiant attempts, all of which seem to fail. Like the throw pillows I made last year whose seams are all popping out now). I always thought it was neat how my mom made baby blankets for all 10 of her kids. I still have the one that she crotched for me, it is gorgeous (and that is why I almost had a heart attack last winter when Jason grabbed a stack of blankets out of the closet to cover the plants up during the frost and I woke up in the morning to find my baby blanket and wedding quilt, that my mom hand stitched also, draped all over the front lawn. Typical guy thing.) Anyways, so today I decided I wanted to make a baby blanket. This is where my first mistake starts. Instead of spending the time taking a sewing class, or perhaps at the very least just talk to someone who knows a thing or two about sewing blankets, I decide on a whim that today is the day for blanket making. I mean come on people, we're making a square here, all straight lines, how hard can it be? The second problem is that I'm not a perfectionist. Whereas Jason is quite the opposite, when it comes to projects he tends to go with my dad's motto: "Any job worth doing is a job worth doing well". I have my own motto: "It's good enough, now lets move on". So I drag Jayden to JoAnn's with me (with a nice piece of Power Ranger fleece that he found as his bribery to stay in the cart and stop pulling everything off the shelf) and lucked out to find some fabric I actually liked (with so many fabric choices there, why do I have the hardest time finding anything decent?) As I'm there I remember that most blankets have that satin binding and was glad that I atleast thought to get some of that. Of course I hadn't even thought about how much fabric I would need, let alone how much binding (who has time to take measurements before shopping?), so I ended up cutting off a big chunk of fabric when I got home so that I would have enough binding to go all around. (But try to give me some credit for atleast being resourceful, I used the extra pieces that I cut off and some ribbon I had laying around to make these cute burp cloths):So I get started as soon as I get home and am pretty confident that I'll be done in an hour tops. This is where the real fun begins. I didn't realize there is certain fabrics that are better for quilting (something I would have found out if I had taken the time to do some research) and the one I got is a little stretchy, so of course it keeps puckering up. I am not a patient person when it comes to pinning, I stick a couple in and call it good. Of course that means that my lines aren't straight and I end up picking out every stitch and starting over like atleast 10 times. Almost every time I start a sewing project, I always forget to get the right color of thread and once I get excited about a project I don't want to put it off until I can go back to the store for the right thread. This wasn't a problem since I sewed it inside out, until I got to that last little bit that I had to sew on the outside after flipping it right side out. Then there's the problem with the corners....in my mind I didn't think that it would be too hard to figure out. Apparently my mind was deceiving me. After many failed attempts I finally googled how to sew corners on the binding. Too bad I had already cut all the strips up and you're supposed to leave the binding in one whole piece and just fold it then sew. This is the result of my impatience (Mandy, you may want to close your eyes, I know how corners that don't match up affect you :): Finally about 6 hours later I finish my simple one hour sewing project (meanwhile my neglected children who have been watching tv for the past 3 hours are starving, the house is a wreck, and I have a half hour before Young Womens to get dinner and homework done. Once I start a project I can't stop until I finish). Now that it's finally done, I kind of like it (as long as you stand atleast 10 feet away when you look at it!) But next time I may just save myself the 6 hrs, spend a couple bucks more and just drive to the store and buy one. Although you never know, maybe one day my little man might just look at all the imperfections on his blanket (right before draping it on a plant to protect it from the frost) and think of the blood, sweat and tears that went into making it. Either that, or he may just realize that his mom is a sewing retard. (Man, I really wish my mom lived closer!)
Sunday, September 07, 2008
One of my biggest anxieties about having my kids grow up is watching them get hurt as they face the real world. I just don't know if I'm strong enough to handle watching their little hearts break. It's hard to let them out of their safe protective bubble here at home and send them out into the world knowing that they will eventually get hurt and there's nothing that I can do to prevent it. I hate feeling so helpless. We lucked out last year in kindergarten, Kylie had such a cute class. They were all the best of friends and we never had any issues with teasing, cliques or bullies, which I am very grateful for. This year we weren't so lucky. There was a new girl in Kylie's class and Kylie was cute to go out of her way to help her. A couple of weeks after she told me about this girl I asked her if she still played with her. She got a sad look on her face and said, "no, at recess I asked her and her friend if they wanted to play with us and she told her friend, 'ewww, don't talk to her'". What a brat! There were several other incidences after that but the most recent was this past week when she was so excited to bring in some sea shells that she had found at the beach to show her class. When she came home that day she was obviously hurt and when I asked her what was wrong she told me, with tears in her eyes, that the same girl told her that her seashells were dumb and then she grabbed them and tried to break them. It broke my heart and I was beyond ticked that she keeps singling out my sweet little girl (please excuse my horomonal imbalance as of late :). I've seen this girl (when I sized her up at the lunch table after the first incident) and she looks like she comes from a rough background so I know I should be sympathetic, but I can't help it. I know I should be saying things to Kylie about how she should still be nice to her no matter what, but I can't help it. I know I should stop getting worked up and overreacting about this, but I can't help it. It just hurts me to see her get hurt. I'm having a hard time knowing what to say to Kylie and how to deal with the situation. When I had kids I wasn't prepared for the level of love that would come with raising a child, the way your heart is attached to theirs, or the pain that comes from seeing them hurt. I know this is just the beginning and it scares me to think of the day when the mean comments go beyond just sea shells.
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Even though it's been four years since I've traveled with a newborn, it still hasn't been long enough for me to forget what it's like. There are so many things about having a baby that I am so excited about, traveling just isn't one of them. That's why we decided to do one last family trip before the little dude pops out. We took a quick beach trip over Labor Day weekend and it was the perfect getaway. It was so relaxing spending a couple of days on the beach with friends. The kids had the best time playing in the waves, digging holes, building sand castles and finding shells and sea creatures. I'm still trying to clean the sand off of them. It was great as always to hang out with our Cali friends, Shawn, Melinda, Nate, Tara and their cute kids. My only complaint about the trip was that it wasn't long enough! Besides the beach, we went to the Orange County swap meet, went to dinner with Jason's aunt Polly, swam at the hotel, grilled it up at Shawn and Melinda's and of course ate at our favorite joint, Wahoo's. Kylie's favorite part was when we went with the Morris' to the tide pools at Laguna beach. She was in awe with all the sea creatures like the anemone, sea cucumbers, hermit crabs, snails, crabs and all sorts of other things. Jayden wasn't as impressed, he thought that beach was too stinky (hence the oh-so-joyous look on his face in the family picture). His favorite part of the trip by far was the hotel (and the $1 generic lego airplane that he got at the swap meet and still hasn't put down since). We went straight to the beach the first day and about every half hour Jayden would run to me and report that he was so excited to go to the hotel and kept asking how much longer until we could go there. I still don't get what the hype is about a hotel for him (when I asked him why he was so excited to go to the hotel he responded "I so excited to see what color it is inside!"), but as we were pulling away on the last day he had tears streaming down his face as he was begging us to let him stay and live at the hotel. Give that kid a hotel and McDonalds (or "DicDonald's as he calls it :) and he would be about the happiest kid alive. Needless to say, we had a great time and I couldn't help but realize how different our next trip will be....pack n' plays, naptimes, bottles, dirty diapers, screaming in the car, diaper bags, sand covered binkys, schedules, nursing under the beach towel, staying out of the sun....of course we're so excited for the new change coming, but I admit that I did smile a little bigger as I sat on my beach chair absolutely all day just watching my kids play.
They loved the hole Shawn and Jason dug, especially when it got filled with waterJason and Shawn boogie boarding
finding hermit crabs and snails at the tide pools One of the many hermit crab pets Kylie found (and tried to convince us to let her bring home) Tara and her too-cute-for-their-own-good twin boys
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
It all started about 3 years ago when we went to visit my parents for the first time since they moved to Indiana. Several months before we came, my dad told Kylie that they had found some frogs in their backyard and so everytime she talked to him on the phone she would ask about the frogs and couldn't wait to see them. Inevitably those particular frogs hopped away to another home and my dad was worried that Kylie would be disappointed if there weren't any frogs. As luck would have it, a couple days before we came to visit there was a big rain storm and when they came out of a store the parking lot was filled with tons of baby frogs. It still makes me smile to picture my parents (and I'm pretty sure Jessica too) catching all these little frogs to bring home for Kylie. Of course Kylie was beyond thrilled to see so many frogs and ever since then her and Papa have had a little frog thing going on. He was cute and got her a stuffed frog for her birthday that she loves and she always tries to pick out birthday and father's day cards for him that have frogs on them. She adores her Papa and I love the cute relationship that they have. So this past week we had a huge monsoon storm and we were surprised to find this big frog doing the back stroke in our pool (where the heck does a frog come from in the middle of the desert??). Jason caught it and saved it to show the kids when they woke up in the morning. As soon as Kylie saw it, the first thing she said was "I have to call Papa!" then she insisted that I take pictures to show him. They were excited to have a pet for a day until we released it into the wild (if you can consider the little man made pond in our neighborhood "the wild").