Monday, August 31, 2009

Gorilla Face

I was going to write a post tonight giving you an update on Mariah's foot and how my diet is going but then i got STUNG IN THE FACE BY A BEE.

A few days ago Hayden and I were playing outside when I noticed that there were hundreds of ants crawling up the side of our house and into an opening outside of his bedroom window. You're probably wondering what this has to do with a bee stinging my face.....I'll get to it. So, being the dutiful wife and slight hick that I am, I made myself some ant poison and fought with Hayden for the rights of being able to put it where they would eat it. Three days later it's finally working. All the ants are dead or dying and have taken it upon themselves to give each other a proper Hayden's carpet. They have all managed to drag their dying bodies out of a hole in his wall and litter themselves upon the floor all over his room.

I can be pretty dense sometimes, but today I set a new record. I took the kids into Hayden's room to play, plopped myself into a chair and started reading. About 20 minutes later Hayden started climbing on my lap making a fuss about some bug or other so I glanced down to where he was pointing and saw for the first time the HUMONGOUS pile of dead ants. As I looked around the room I started noticing them everywhere. I jumped out of my seat in horror and saw that I had even sat on a few. I spent the next 10 minutes trying to suck them all into the vacuum, but even then there were stragglers. So we decided not to play in there until the siege ended.

About this time I decided to make a cheesecake. Since I'm so obviously an expert on cheesecake making having made at least 3 previously, I decided to ignore the explicit instructions on the recipe about placing an extra pan below the cheesecake to keep any drips from what?....maybe catching on FIRE. A few minutes later we were smoked out of the house.

Which brings me to the bee. I should have known what was coming. I mean, the bees have built a nest between the door and the screen. If that's not asking for it, I don't know what is. I guess banging the screen door open and closed about 35 times might not have helped the bee's tolerance of us. On one such banging he must have gotten really peeved and decided to let me have it right on my eyebrow. I'm not sure if it was all the wild slapping of my own face or maybe the baking soda that I put on immediately afterward, but for some reason it stopped hurting after a couple hours and it hasn't swollen at all. I was fully expecting to look like a gorilla woman for the next couple of weeks, but I suppose that desire will have to wait.

Mariah's foot is doing much better. The day after I wrote the post the swelling went down and it looked normal again. After reading the label on the crushed bee cure I noticed that it says to wait 3 days for the healing process to take place. Next time I'll try to be more patient.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


"Just give him a fake tool," I told Helmut as Hayden was rooting
through the tool box for something to fix his bike. I was thinking
perhaps a small wrench or something. Helmut in his infinite wisdom
decided a large mallet was the wisest "fake" tool to put in the hands
of a toddler. *guffaw*

Friday, August 28, 2009

Chew Toy

The only thing Burt's Bee's lip gloss is really good for in my
opinion. Somebody should really tell them that their lip gloss dries
out our lips so badly that it has been relegated to the role of child's chew toy.


Hayden came to me with his finger stuck up his nose and said,"Mommy
help me, I stuck." Then shook his head as he walked off muttering "....boogers..."

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Curious george

This is Hayden's I'm-to-busy-watching-Curious-George-to-give-you-a-real-
smile face.

Product Testing

Taking his BFF for a ride.

It's still a sweat your eyeballs out temperature here so we've been
looking for activities to do inside since the cool pool closed. Lately
we've taken to going to different stores and testing their merchandise
on the premise of doing some early Christmas shopping. Hehe.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Little sister

I took this picture to commemorate the rain we got this afternoon. I
guess that's being generous, it was really just a few droplets of
water, not even enough to get the patio wet. Hayden was in heaven
though, playing in God's own sprinkler.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Bug Bite Drama

Tonight I'm nursing a splitting headache and wondering what could possibly have brought this on. Maybe it's the insane heat, the like of which my body has never been subjected to before, or maybe it was having to tell Hayden "NO" 5000 times today, or maybe it was because I spent the day worrying about Mariah's hugely swollen foot.

I'm going to go with the latter. A couple months ago Mariah got feasted on by some mosquitoes and a few days later developed HUGE scary looking bug bites. Both of her legs swelled up and she was really cranky for several days. I got so worried that I ended up taking her to the Walgreen's pharmacy where they told me I would have to give her benadryl and antibiotics because it was clear that they were getting infected and she was having an allergic reaction. After reading the warning label on the benadryl I decided to try something else. So instead of taking her to the doctor, I took her to People's Pharmacy. In case you've never heard of this place I will just go ahead and tell you it's absolutely a-m-a-z-i-n-g. They have a full stock of homeopathic remedies, natural cures and plenty of people to tell you how to use them. They have remedies and cures for things I didn't even know it was possible to cure without surgery. I personally have tried a few of their remedies with great success, even better success than I've had with regular doctors. So, i decided to take Mariah there and see if they had any miracles. I shouldn't have even wondered. Within a couple minutes of arriving I was given a homeopathic remedy and sent on my way. I gave Mariah the stuff they gave me (Apis Mellifica) and within 2 hours her legs were looking normal again. It was amazing. Apparently Mariah is allergic to bug bites. I had no idea that was even possible.

So yesterday when she woke up from her nap with a hugely swollen ankle I just assumed it must be from a bug bite. With only a small amount of panicking I was able to give her the remedy they gave me and waited to be amazed again. To my horror it has been about 30 hours now and it still looks about the same as yesterday....except now her foot is also a little swollen. It doesn't really look like any of the previous bug bites looked which leads me to think maybe she sprained her ankle. It doesn't appear to cause her any pain to stand on though, and only seems to bother her when it itches, so I'm stumped. I would take her to the doctor, but the doctors around here are boneheads and I can already hear them telling me just to keep an eye on they charge me $200.

Anybody got any ideas?

Just for fun I looked up Apis Mellifica to see what it is I'm actually feeding to my 10 month old baby. It's crushed up honey bee's. Not the honey, just the bee's. Yummy.

Monday, August 24, 2009

The Search

Since the Doobie discovery incident I've been scrambling to come up
with a new nickname for Mariah. She goes by Mariah, Maya, and Princess for now.
Some contenders that have slipped out of my mouth recently are:

Maya papaya
Doopy poopy (because there would have to be some that are completely
'lil My my
Maya don't crya
Squirmy wormy
Brownie face
Lubby dubby
Oh Maya
Doobie doober (Hayden's favorite)
And my favorite,

Doobie...oh wait, that's what we've been trying to
get away from... Dang it.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Cleaning Lady

Mariah "the vacuum" Granda

Friday, August 21, 2009

Conversations with a Two Year Old

Hayden climbed onto my lap patted my tummy and said,
"you have a baby mommy?"
I think it's time for someone to have a time-out.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Potty Talk

As Hayden approached the 2 year mark and beyond I decided that it was getting a little too embarrassing to have him still hiding his face in the seat of my pants and grabbing my boobs at random times, especially in public, so I started telling him quietly that those things are private and we don't touch them. He's been pretty good about it. Once in a while he forgets and I have to remind him not to do it. I was never quite sure how much of the "private" talks actually sunk in until today.

We haven't quite gotten to potty training again since our first failed attempt nearly 7 months ago. I've been dreading it, but also looking forward to it as I CAN'T STAND changing poopy diapers. They are the bane of my existence. I assumed that when I became a mom I would love my child so much that even his poop would smell like roses, but sadly it's not so. I gag multiple times while changing them and curse the guy who invented diapers. Somebody has got to invent a better way to deal with pooh. SERIOUSLY... I digress.

This afternoon I noticed Hayden getting the funny look on his face and making for a corner. I politely waited until he was done before I asked him if he had a dirty diaper. Here's how the conversation went:

Me: "Hayden did you go poopy?"
Hayden: "NO" (he always denies it)
Me: "Come here and let me check your diaper."
Hayden: "NO, you can't look at it, that's private!"

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Monday, August 17, 2009

My Editor

I would just like to take this time to blame my multiple spelling errors and bad usage of grammar on my editor. He's only 2 so I'll give him a break.

I have been attempting to write and edit most of this blog using my iPhone, since Hayden broke my computer and Mariah ripped off whatever keys remained. It's been an interesting project. The pictures have all been taken using my iPhone 3GS and are actually much better quality than they show up as on the blog. I've assigned Helmut to figuring out why they show up so poorly, but if you already know how to fix the issue please share.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Daddy's Girl

When Hayden was a baby no one could soothe him like I could. Helmut
tried to get up with him a few times at night to give me a break but
the subsequent screaming had me rolling out of bed muttering to myself
about how inadequate fathers were and why couldn't I just get a break
already. What can I say, I'm pretty possessive of my sleep. I'm a
supreme grouch if I don't get what I have deemed as "enough."

When Mariah came along in all her willful and colicky glory I almost lost
my mind and in an effort to help me keep it Helmut started taking her
at night and soothing her back to sleep. She had a horrible habit of
waking up 20 times after she'd been put down for the night before she
would finally settle down and sleep. Often we didn't get her to settle
down until midnight. Night after night of this combined with a sleepless toddler had me shaking my fists in the air and wondering if I would ever get my precious sleep again (really, I'm ridiculous about it).

Helmut in his extremely self sacrificing way took over roughly half of the soothing back to sleep attempts, which I consider to be an admirable amount for a father, especially as he seemed to have much success. Now when he's home for the weekend and we have the option I shove Mariah into his arms at nap time and he's able to whisk her away to dreamland without a peep, which is more than I can say for myself.

I don't like to admit it to myself often, but at times I think she prefers him to me.


Felines = Lions

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Chocolate Gelato

I should have known this was coming when I got him his very own
chocolate gelato. This was followed by a quick transformation into a
Tasmanian devil that I chased willy nilly around Whole Foods
Market. Upon our arrival home I was treated to the biggest tantrum I've endured from him in at least 6 months. I blame it on a combination of too much sugar and teething (and most certainly NOT bad parenting).

We're still trying to make it through the arrival of some new molars. They appear to be causing him quite a bit of pain. Yesterday he woke up from his nap screaming and crying that his teeth were hurting so I broke down and gave him Tylenol.

In completely unrelated news, I'm back on my starvation diet trying hard to shed the last 15 of the 45 pounds I gained during my pregnancy with Mariah. This means I eat breakfast and lunch and a snack and then around 3pm I stop eating and don't eat until breakfast the following morning. It's a tough diet to stick too, but easier for me than counting calories or following certain food groupings. It also helped me shed the 45 pounds I gained with Hayden and in High School a fabulous 15 pounds that I had hanging on me for apparently no reason.....except maybe my obsession with chocolate.

Monday, August 10, 2009

2 Year Molars

This morning Hayden was complaining to me
about his mouth hurting, so I took a peak and noticed some new molars
coming in. I guess that explains the puddles of drool and over all
grouchiness...not to mention a string of ear infections. I guess I can stop researching my brains out trying to figure out what is causing his ear infections, it seems he's been working on these teeth for quite some time. To think, I was SURE he had ALL his teeth already.

Nursing his incoming molars.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

My Future Tell All

One day I would like to write a tell-all book for new mothers. Some of the chapters would include:

Labor and the week after - what your mom won't tell you.
Breastfeeding - how nature really intended it to feel.
The Tantrum months - how to survive.
and Introducing #2 (by this i mean the second child.....not poop) - the types of mayhem you should expect.

And that's as far as I've gotten, because let's face it Hayden is only 2.5 and that's all the hands on experience I've had so far.

The first 17 months of Hayden's life were mothering bliss for me. I enjoyed every minute of it. He was arguably the worlds easiest baby. I was enraptured by his every smile, it was so good it was almost magical, like floating on a cloud or dancing in a flowery meadow. I felt on top of the world, like I must have some mad mothering skillz to have such a good baby. I loftily looked down on the mother of the screaming child in the grocery store and wished to myself that she would control her young so it wouldn't wake my sleeping angel.

Then Hayden turned 18 months old, started throwing hourly tantrums and having routine scream fests, hitting other kids and kicking them and doing that really annoying head butting trick that kids learn (you know, when you're holding them and they slam their head into your face and give you a bloody nose). My lofty dreams of being the perfect mother and avoiding all the parenting pitfalls plummeted. So much for my perfect angel. What the heck happened?

By this time in the story I was already pregnant with Mariah. At 15 months Hayden was such an angel that we decided he needed a little angel friend and companion to complete our angelic family. I was horrified. If this is how bad my son is now, what are we going to do when he actually turns 2? Maybe it's just a phase? Maybe we should spank him more? Time-outs? What the heck? After a few embarrassing incidences at the store and with friends we became somewhat reclusive. Too humiliated with our child's horrible behavior and not wanting to loose friends that we were just making we decided it would be best to keep him at home for a while and not expose other kids to his fury. Days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months. We were lonely and desperate. Do other people have devil children like this? or is there something wrong with our kid? There is a good ending to this story so keep reading.

By this time I was full-term and gave birth to our precious girl. Now we had a little monster, and a new baby angel (or so we thought). Hayden, sensing the coming arrival, stopped sleeping and started waking up screaming several times nightly. By the time Mariah came along we were so sleep deprived that we didn't know how we were going to make it. We brought her home in all her wailing goodness and started trying to establish a routine. After a few almost calm days Mariah decided to fit with the theme of mayhem and be a colicky infant. She spent the next two months screaming incessantly.

I spent my days and nights in super-survival-mode. Must keep baby fed and changed. Must make sure Hayden doesn't hit her or pull her hair too many times. Must try to keep children ALIVE. Must not become so depressed that I miss out on the cute baby stuff. Yeah right, like that was going to happen. I spent many days swimming through a sea of depression, struggling to keep my head above water. How did we go from "angel child" to this is such a short time? Keep reading.

A few moths and much screaming and crying later I was researching my brains out trying to come up with solutions and I came across an article about pin worms. EWWWW GROSS. As if my child could have something that nasty! So for a few months I let it go. I mentioned to Hayden's Dr. that I thought he could have them, but she thought it unlikely and let it go at that. Then I found out that the cure is just an over-the-counter medicine and it's super safe. So I decided to try it out and OH MY GOSH it must be magic in a bottle! Hayden was about 26 months when I gave it to him and that day he threw his very last scream fest/tantrum. He also stopped waking up at night screaming. He started talking to other kids instead of hitting them first. He started laughing again and being normal. He turned into the little boy that I remembered from so long ago.

I don't want to blame everything on the worms. I know that much of his behavior was part of growing up. Going through the terrible 2's (which we're not through just yet) and the difficulty of getting used to a new sibling. Trimming the apron strings, but by no means cutting them. But it sure did help. Those months were so intense for us that dealing with the actual "terrible two's" doesn't seem that bad anymore. I still loose my patience too often, and overreact when he's naughty. I still sweat a river down my back when he screams over toys he can't have at the grocery store, but in the end it seems so much more bearable and normal. Like that's how it's supposed to be.

At this time I also figured out how to help Mariah with her colic. ENZYMES. If you're breastfeeding you can take them and again, it's magic in a bottle ( just be sure to consult a professional as to which are the best for a breastfeeding mom, some have herbs that you want to avoid). I started taking them for me, and two days later I had a calm sweet infant. I was able to stop pacing the living room with her for hours on end and actually sit down for a few minutes together. My sanity took a turn for the better. I started to feel like life could be fun again at some point and less like I was living in a self-made hell.

Mariah is now 9 months old and I'm back on top of the world, but with more humility. I no longer think of myself as a great parent, but instead a work in progress. I no longer look down on the mom of the screaming kid in the store.....because most often it is me. I find Hayden's behavior amusing and enjoy watching him interact with other kids.

To put it plainly: I love every minute of being a mom.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Product Placement

I got Hayden his first over priced Starbucks beverage tonight. A kiddie
sized Soy hot chocolate. Upon arriving home Helmut asked him, "was it
good?" to which he responded, "no, it was AWESOME."

Mariah's Starbucks envy face.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Helpful Guides

Toddler guide to eating grapes:
1. Separate grapes from stem.
2. Fling stem to the farthest corner of the kitchen.
3. Consume half of grapes and fling the other half to the opposite
corner of the kitchen.
4. Wipe sticky hands on shirt, face, table, mom's legs and chair.

9 month old guide to eating grapes:
1. Eat two bites of cereal.
2. Refuse emphatically all additional foods.
3. Scream until released from high chair.
4. Covertly crawl to grape leftovers on floor and consume being sure
to add any bugs that might be lying around ( if no bugs are available
rocks and/or dirt is also acceptable.)
5. Bite mother as hard as possible when she attempts to remove said

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Self explanitory

Chillaxin' in his BFF's pool.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Gone crazy

This afternoon I told Hayden that I had better "feed his sister before she goes crazy." He spent the next 20 minutes begging for me to take him to crazy. "I want to go to crazy too mommy, puhleeeeeease!".......sure hunny, I'm halfway there.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Staying Alive

The only thing that has flourished during the 90 consecutive days of
100+ degrees thanks to a spot in the shade and a toddler who's
obsessed with 'watering the flowers.'

Monday, August 3, 2009


As a Livingston by birth I have had some embarrasing traits passed on to me, one of which is to be unable to control the drivle that comes out of my mouth when holding a cute baby, another is to conjure up completely innopropriate nicknames for my children. Last night Helmut and I were watching old episodes of The Office that we've never seen before. One of these was in season 2 about random drug testing. Michael (the main charater) was expanding on the different names of illegal wasn't until that moment that I realized I had been calling Mariah the equivolent of a joint. I'm not sure how it escaped my attention that the name "dubie" was a reference to marijuana. I guess that explains all the dirty looks I've been garnering at the grocery store. **guffaw**

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Cupcakes and Crayons

We stopped for cupcakes today at our favorite cupcake place. Hayden proudly chose a chocolate cupcake with pink icing and sat in
his car seat devouring it. I looked back at him when he was 3/4 of the
way through and noticed he was just sitting there staring blankly
ahead so asked him if he had a tummy ache to which he responded "yes."
He gave me the rest of his cupcake and then proceeded to root around
in his car seat until he came across a lime green crayon. He then
gleefully asked me for some paper, which I gave him, and began to
color. Not more than 2 minute later I checked back on him to see how
it was going only to find him devouring the crayon. Since when did a
crayon taste better than a cupcake?

Saturday, August 1, 2009


I woke up in the middle of the night and silently rejoiced to myself
that Hayden wasn't there sleeping with us for the first time in 6
months! Then just for kicks I reached my hand over...and right onto
his face. Blarg. Does anyone's toddler sleep in their own bed? He
started out as a 'Babywise' baby and from the time he was 7 weeks old
until he learned how to climb out of his crib at around 20 months he
didn't wake up at night even once, but somewhere around 20 months
things started falling apart. Now he comes in every single night
around 2 am and sleeps with us. Don't get me wrong I don't mind a little
extra snuggle, it's the kicking in the face that gets to me.