Thursday, February 26, 2009

happy birthday drew!!!


drew's birth day...2.26.06

drew's 1st birthday...2.26.07

drew's 2nd birthday...2.26.08



today is drew's THIRD birthday...how in the world did my SECOND child turn THREE today? it seems like sarah just turned THREE (well, she did just turn THREE 17 months ago!)!!! here are a few nostalgic pics of my sweet cuddle bug...drew boo...

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

an oldie but goody ash wednesday story...

some of you may have already heard this story before, but its my favorite "catholic" memory at college...

you see, i am a SOUTHERN baptist...i have lived in mississippi and tennessee in my lifetime that i can remember. i live in the bible belt. at the very least, 99% of my friends through high school were protestant...

then i started looked at colleges. i had it narrowed down to samford university, a baptist school, texas christian university, a disciples of christ school, and saint louis university, a jesuit (catholic) school...and i ended up at the catholic school! boy, was i in for a culture shock!!!

learning about a different denomination was fascinating to me. i took part in many discussions that lasted into the wee hours of the night about the differences between catholicism and protestant beliefs. i attended mass on many occasions with my friends. (mass was 10pm on sunday night for students...it was THE social event to wrap up the weekend and to revert back to your "good" self for the school week.) okay, i am getting MAJORLY off the point...basically, i thought i had learned a lot...

then, second semester freshman year, i was taking an honors history class...i think it was american...i'm not so much a history buff like my mom and brother :) anyway...my professor was the quintessential absent minded professor. always showing up to class with mustard on his tie, or mismatched shoes, or tape around his glasses where they had broken...you get the picture. so, ash wednesday rolls around...

my professor walks into class with this HUGE smear of black on his forehead. i immediately turn around in my chair to my friend (of course she was catholic) and start making fun of my professor's latest blunder.

she looks at me like i am the DUMBEST person she has ever met...and informs me that he has "ashes" on his forehead!!! apparently, since it was a 9am class, most students and others i had passed that morning had NOT been to mass yet to get their ashes...

i felt so so so dumb! the even more air headed part to this story is that the whole 4 years i was employed at saint francis hospital, i was STILL confused and surprised when i saw the first patient/co-worker/doctor with ashes on his or her forehead EVERY ash wednesday!

i guess what they say is true...you can take a girl out of the bible belt, but you can't take the bible belt out of the girl...

sarah's preschool valentine's day party...2.12


love. love. love the first two pics...sarah and her friend gabby having a very flamboyant conversation :) i love the facial expressions and arm gestures! little mimics :)
sarah was so happy to see jacob...i think the feeling was mutual!

gabby and sarah posing...
love it that both girls have their heads propped up on their hands...like its SO boring to play bingo WITH CANDY at a PARTY for goodness sakes!!!
handsome little brother!
sarah and anna leigh...everyone looked R.O.U.G.H. by the end of the day...the teachers looked like they needed a few weeks off and the kiddos were all wild and crazy! nothing like a party day with extra sweets to liven things up :)

Monday, February 23, 2009

grandparent's day...2.10








video

as you can see, sarah had no shortage of grandparents at her preschool grandparent's day luncheon! of course, mimi, poppy, nana, and pop pop were there...but g.g. and papa came all the way from louisiana to attend as well!

sarah was in her element...the center of attention to all of her doting grandparents :) the black and white pics were taken by the preschool...so they are pictures of pictures, thus the poor quality. the other pics are courtesy of mimi! no parents were allowed at the event!!! i was so sad! i don't miss ANY of sarah's or drew's preschool events! so, i FORCED mimi into taking lots of pictures and videos for me :)

the last picture just cracks me up...you can barely see the kids over all the grandparents trying to take pictures! too sweet! i am so so thankful to have such wonderful and involved grandparents in my kids' lives. it means so much to me! i think i'm a little more sentimental than most about multi-generational "bonding" from working in geriatrics for so many years :)

p.s. aren't the pictures of sarah and her grandparent sets wonderful? i love them all!

p.p.s. i know the video is totally random...i love this video because...

a. nana is doing the hokey pokey!

b. poppy bill is NOT doing the hokey pokey! he had teased sarah for WEEKS that he was NOT going to do the hokey pokey, but was going to do his own dance...it drove sarah crazy :)

c. at the end of the video, the "bride" on the big screen is sarah playing dress up in her classroom!

p.p.p.s. grandparent's day is a special event for JUST the 4 and 5 year old preschool classes!

overall, i think the grandparents enjoyed the event as much as sarah! what a sweet memory!!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

splish splash...2.9







after getting super dirty playing outside, we all headed inside and went STRAIGHT to mimi's big bathtub...i put a little shampoo in with the water to make a few bubbles...then, i turned on the whirlpool jets...

let's just say, there were bubbles everywhere! the kids had so much fun playing in the tub AND having bubbles! it was a special treat to have a bath as they usually shower at home...they both have such thick hair, its tough to get all the shampoo out in the tub...

poor little drew didn't really know how to take a bath...he was squatting forever before i could convince him to sit down in the tub. poor deprived child :)

i think that this monday was a super day in my kids' books...great grandparents in town, lots of sunshine and outside time, AND a fun bubble bath! what more could you ask for?!?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

a beautiful warm day in february?!?...2.9





it was 72 degrees on monday! what a welcomed relief from all the cold, harsh weather we have had this winter! little jacob only had ONE blanket on him instead of his customary 3 or 4!!!
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the big kids were beyond thrilled to be able to play outside...sarah in short sleeves no less! i let them skip their naps so they could enjoy the fresh air and nice temps! g.g., mimi, and i sat outside with them soaking up the warm weather and sunshine too!
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please ignore sarah's crazy outfit. she picked her own play clothes that day after dance class...i really didn't expect to be taking her picture so many times!!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

videos from the archives...late december 2008

video

video

video

i just figured out all the steps to get the videos from my flip to blogger...so i am backtracking a little bit to put these first videos up.

the first 2 videos are obviously play time with uncle andy and the big kids...

the 3rd video is of the kiddos on new year's eve at the york's house...they were all screaming, "happy new year!" in case you can't decipher the deafening roar!!!

i am IN LOVE with the flip! i keep it in my diaper bag, along with my smaller camera to capture all those special little moments of motherhood! i think every mom needs a flip!!!

Monday, February 16, 2009

good diaper deal...

although we only have one in diapers again after a 2 month stint with drew AND jacob in diapers for november and december, you know i can't pass up a good deal...

i always check out baby cheapskate to see if i am missing out on any wonderful sales on baby/kid products...its where i learned about the britax carseat sale, the flip sale, and several other things involved in nursing that i won't go into details about :)

right now, diapers.com is running a special on diapers...

the plain ole sale price is so-so on jumbo sized packs of huggies and pampers...but wait!!!

if you buy pampers, there is a $1.00 off coupon you can use right on the website.

plus, if you are a first time buyer from diapers.com, you can enter the code "KELL4071" to get TEN DOLLARS OFF your order.

if you spend $49, you receive free shipping!

AND, as if all that weren't enough...there is a form you can print off of their homepage to get a free subscription to parents magazine OR the price of the magazine in a refund/rebate!

so, in my case, i ordered 5 jumbo packs of size 2 pampers swaddlers.

regular price: $14.39 (according to their site)
sale price: $10.99x5 packages (to qualify for the free shipping and magazine offer)
-$1 off coupon for pampers
=$43.95 at checkout + $14.97 back in refund= an amazing $28.98 for 5 packs of diapers!!!

that's 200 diapers at 14 cents a piece!!! great deal!!!

just wanted to pass this along to my friends with kids in diapers! we can't ever save enough money on diapers!!!

a family affair...2.6

on friday, the 6th of february all five of us loaded up and headed out for a crazy adventure...
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we were going to the eye doctor...for sarah AND DREW to have eye exams! can you tell how much i was dreading this?!?
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sarah is an ole pro by now...she performs all the tests happily. except the eye drops...those cause a meltdown of epic proportions! happily, this day was NOT a dilation day! i did ask dr. byrd...sarah only has to have her eyes dilated 1x/year at her august appointment. thank goodness!
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so, we get there, and jacob needs to eat. so jacob and i stay in the van while tim and the big kids go inside. drew falls down and scrapes his knee on the way in the door...just a preview of the "fun" to come...
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i figured that tim would get everyone signed in and settled in the waiting room while i fed jacob. of course, today was the one day that they are running on schedule. after drew calmed down (requiring TWO bandaids from the front desk ladies!), they were quickly called back to the exam room.
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drew went first...he was initially excited to finally get to sit in the big chair that previously had been reserved for his big sister only. drew did his vision test for the tech...tim said it was "very interesting". i cannot imagine trying to test vision in an almost 3 year old boy!
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i arrived on the scene at the conclusion of drew's vision test...next sarah "performed" for the tech. after that, the five of us were left alone to enjoy the 3 channels of cartoons available on the television in the exam room...this is when tim filled me in on what i had missed. and told me that i better check the paperwork because he wasn't even sure he filled in drew's birthday correctly! dads--always on top of these things :)
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when dr. byrd came in (oh, 2 or 3 meltdowns later), she examined drew first. she said he had to have his eyes dilated so she could fully assess his vision/eye shape/etc. oh boy! so, she leaves and the tech comes back in.
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i don't think i can accurately express in words how eye drops are administered to a toddler. i sit in the exam chair with drew in my lap with him facing me straddling my legs. then, the tech sits knee to knee with me. then, i lay drew backwards into her lap. i (attempt to) hold drew's legs and arms still while the tech (attempts to) hold drew's head still AND put 3 different drops in each eye! its so much fun :) i KNOW you all wish you could have been there!!!
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after that fun experience, we all 5 (oh, did i mention we also have the stroller and everyone's coats? we looked like a three ring circus!) trek across the hall to the dim dilation room. sarah and drew immediately begin taking every single toy/stuffed animal out of the toy bins. jacob gets upset because he thinks we are trying to get him to go to sleep since the lights are dim.
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the tech comes in the check how drew's eyes are dilating, and THE DROPS ARE NOT WORKING WELL ENOUGH...so we have to repeat traumatic eye drop experience AGAIN. oh the joy in the room was palpable!
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finally, the drops have fully taken effect and we are ready to trek back across the hall to the exam room. sarah and drew settle on the floor comatose in front of the tv. jacob decides that now he really IS sleepy and wants to nap NOW...
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dr. byrd arrives again, and finished drew's eye exam. he got a clean bill of (eye) health! hallelujah! i CANNOT imagine drew having to wear glasses or patch...it would spell T.R.O.U.B.L.E.!!!
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she said that his eyes were the same shape and responded equally to her tests. she said he could still develop problems (as anyone could), but as of now, he was lookin' good! she said he just needs to come back in one year for another routine eye exam (as all of us should do...eh hem...just a little public service announcement!). we are so thankful for all the prayers on drew's behalf!
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by this time, drew was OVER being at the doctor and sweet little baby jacob was REALLY ready for a nap...
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we still have sarah's exam to go...so amid the cries and screams of her two younger brothers, sarah climbs in the chair for her tests. she did great...mom and dad notsomuch! dr. byrd told us that her vision remains stable at 20/30 corrected, so we can further reduce patching time! GREAT NEWS!!!
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so, sarah had been patching 3 hours/day=21 hours a week. dr. byrd said we could go to 2-3/hours a day=14-21 hours a week! being OCD, i arbitrarily chose 18 hours/week for our goal. that way, when we go back, if dr. byrd says we need to up the patching, i know that 21 hours/week SHOULD get us back on track. and if we go back and she says we can back off further, i know that 14 hours/week is less than what we had been doing! does any of that make sense?!?
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we were finally finished! all we had to do was make it out of the exam room and out the front door! i stopped at the desk to schedule sarah's next appointment and pay while tim tried to get all three kids into the van and their seats...i KNOW that office was so glad to see us leaving!!!
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so, great great news all around!!! we are beyond relieved that drew doesn't need any glasses! and we are on cloud nine to be reducing our patching time once again!
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we are going back in 3 months for sarah only to have her routine exam...you better believe drew and jacob will NOT be coming to that appointment!!!
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p.s. thanks for reading the entire saga...i am trying to write some stories of our crazy day-to-day life on this blog so that when i am old and gray, i can look back on these times and laugh!!!
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p.p.s. jacob fell asleep as soon as we started moving in the van...such a good little trooper!!!

Friday, February 13, 2009

jacob's first laugh...2.1

video

p.s. our super cool new video camera films in widescreen...and blogger apparently doesn't "do" widescreen videos...sorry about the black lines!!!

Friday, February 6, 2009

sarah's dream come true...1.31

ever since we told sarah that mommy was going to have a baby, she has had but ONE request...she didn't care if it was a brother or sister, she didn't care what we named him/her, she didn't care about anything EXCEPT if she could give him/her a bottle. poor little punkin didn't realize that mommy was going to nurse the baby!
at 6 weeks, tim gave jacob his first bottle of expressed milk. he guzzled it right down like he had been bottle feeding his whole life :) after that initial bottle, we have tried to give jacob one a week so that he wouldn't "forget" how to take one...
tim had been the only one to give jacob a bottle for a long time...then nana, pop pop, and aunt becky kept the kiddos so tim and i could go out to dinner ALONE...nana was the second person to give jacob a bottle...
the third person to give jacob a bottle was our friend miss jan scott...she was at our house shopping at the just ducky trunk show and offered to give him a bottle because i was really busy...again, he took it like a champ! and she was eating it up herself because she has another grandbaby on the way at the end of the summer!!!
video
finally, the big one...daddy took the three kids to nana and pop pop's house on the saturday of the just ducky show...while they were there, jacob needed to eat. sarah FINALLY got to give her little brother a bottle...on his 3 month birthday! the pictures and video speak for themselves...sarah was on cloud nine! what a sweet big sister...at the ripe ole age of 4 no less!!!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

making cookies WITH SPRINKLES...1.26

for some unknown reason, my big kids got it in their heads that they wanted to make cookies WITH SPRINKLES for their g.g. and papa and "unka" andy...so, one day when everyone was in a good mood, mommy broke out the messy sprinkles and let them have at it...of course with the camera close at hand... sarah was very exact and detailed in her sprinkle distribution...i had to encourage her to put more sprinkles on each cookie...
drew, on the other hand, put a mound of sprinkles on each cookie...no rhyme or reason to it...
little jacob looking on...wondering why his brother and sister are soooo happy!!!
once his view in the bouncer got old, he moved to the swing for a little variety...
while mommy was moving jacob to the swing, drew got a little over zealous with his sprinkle eating...i knew the kids were gonna sample the goods (a rarity), but i didn't really expect drew to shove a handful of sprinkles in his mouth all at once...i should have known drew would come up with a "good idea"--(he must say a million times a day, "mommy, i have a good idea...")
we made sugar cookies with icing and sprinkles for g.g. and papa's and uncle andy's care packages. sarah also wrote a note and made a picture for each package. i was spelling out the words for her to write, "i love you uncle andy" and, when she was about 2/3rds of the way through writing all that, she said, "mom, uncle andy has a LONG name!"
i don't know how well iced cookies fair with the usps, but i guess its the thought that counts!