Wednesday, February 29, 2012


The weather is blah, Hubs is traveling, they're still pooping in their pants, and the news all around  is depressing.  But we know that God is on His throne and reigns over all our troubles, and works things out for the good of those who love Him.  And a huge batch of homemade chocolate chip cookies helps, too.
M's Kitchenaid advertisement pose
Like the little red hen story - they only want to help eat


Look to the cookie!

M - what a ham!

Smile?  I'm eating!

I'm feeling better already
Don't worry, Hubs, I'll save you a few.  Hurry home!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Zoo Fun

Our Zoo Membership expires in a few days so we've taken to the boys there twice this month to get the most out of it.  I only take the old Sony Handycam there so the photos aren't the greatest, but we sure do have fun!  Here are a few:
Checkin out the tortoises

Komodo Dragon!

Lunch with our buddy, S.  Don't they look like they're in school?!

M hams it up in the Beehive room

M is a worker bee!

Daddy, M, N and the penguins

M hamming it up again, pollinating this time.

N collecting "pollen"
For those of you who've never been to the MN zoo, you should know the "Beehive" is a recent addition, an indoor play area for kids ages 1-3, but most importantly, it has a kiddie sized potty.  A tiny little fully functioning potty that would kill a full sized adult to sit on, but perfect for the kids.  So now we make a "beeline" straight for the beehive when we go in and when we go out, hence all the photos in there.  Also, the boys actually LIKE to go to the potty in there!  So we go.  ("Regular" public restrooms with the auto-flush toilets still scare them to death.) 

We love the zoo and can't wait to go back, when Momma is a little less prego this summer and the boys hopefully (N) are a little less fond of running away from said slow Momma. 

Friday, February 24, 2012

Bright Spot

In an otherwise not-too-bright week (need I remind you of the rear-view-mirror-up-the-nose and innumerable potty accidents?). 

Unaided, M drew his initial on the easel! THEN, he posed for a photo - unbelievable!
He went on to add a "W," his middle initial, directly above it.  We were very impressed.  When asked to repeat the performance this morning, he drew...a mountain range.

But it's still progress!

And for the record, N can also make a few select letters on the easel.  A few weeks ago, he drew an "H" for the first time, then a "T."  While they are not his initials, they ARE necessary for actually spelling his name.

Remember when you count your blessings they always outnumber your tears. That's what we do.  Much love to you this weekend.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Forgive Me

For my absolute insanity yesterday. Obviously I need to get a grip. The day went from bad, when I posted, to worse throughout the evening and well into the night. Now that both boys are sleeping and all I hear is the incessant clock ticking, I'm feeling better and realizing that he will not be pooping his pants when I send him to school.

Your reassurance and suggestions are helpful. I think MO is right, that his sphincter muscles may not be developed yet. I think MW is right, that he's conditioned himself to poo in his nap diaper like Pavlov's dog's. And AK is right, it's just going to take more time than I want (or have).

It's probably not fair that he's a twin and M breezed through this potty training and he's struggling. This may be my first lesson in teaching twins. I've had "indivIidualization in education" pounded into my head quite thoroughly for 11 years now, but it takes a very personal situation to understand its importance at the cellular level. Obviously, my kids learn differently, despite their being twins. Clearly, my stressing out is not going to help N learn this new skill. Therefore, I need to relax and re-strategize. I'd start with a glass of wine, but since I can't do that, a chocolate pop-tart and a glass of milk will have to do.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Potty Help Please!

Disclaimer: this entry is full of poop.  Read on if you dare.

Tomorrow marks six weeks since we began Operation Potty Training.  Here's the good news: aside from sleep-times, I think M is 99% potty trained.  And he's really improving in that department, waking up dry from naps sometimes, so if he were the only one being potty trained, I'd be throwing a freaking parade in his honor and thinking that I was a potty training champion mommy.

However, I'm pulling my hair out.

N can mostly stay dry when it comes to pee, and he KNOWS he's supposed to poop in the potty.  But there is some sort of brain-bottom disconnect happening and I'm at my wit's end trying to help him.  Here's what happened again, for the third day in a row - and it's severely affecting naptime, the two hours of the day I get to either accomplish some kind of chore (like meals or laundry) and/or put my swelling feet up (I'm 30 weeks prego tomorrow and finally beginning to feel it), and since this is day three of pretty much no nap, I'm desperate, and calling on you moms who've gone before; HELP!

How do I get him to let it go on the potty?

I think he feels it coming - he either has a little smear and runs to the bathroom, or just "feels" it.  Then he pees and jumps up, thinking he's done.  Since he's been a naptime pooper for years now, I've been making him stay put before nap - for a LONG time.  Reading stories, the whole thing.  Today the boys and I were in there from 12:30-1:00, just trying to go poo. 

As soon as we gave up, washed up, got dressed and tucked in, M wanted to try again, therefore so did N. So I let them, because M does seem to be right - not only did he go, but he made it on the big potty!  Hooray!  Celebration, choosing of the poopy prize, tuck back in, all while N was supposed to continue trying.  But he was scootching around the bathroom like the potty was a car, rifling through the bathroom cupboards, and "driving" out toward the living room when I got back to him.

So I said he was done, slapped a diaper on him (he'd already had two small accidents prior to 12:30) and put him back to bed.  That was at 1:15, so he'd spend most of 45 minutes sitting there...plenty of time, I'd think to do the deed if it were about to happen (because it usually does around 1:00 or immediately following the closing of the naptime door).

He was getting out of bed and helping himself to the bathroom less than 10 minutes later, WITH A POOPY DIAPER. 


So, what do I do?

  • I've been repeatedly asking him if he knows where poopy goes.  "In the potty" he says.
  • He's seen M do this many times and receive a prize from the poopy prize jar.  (N has received 2, and one was totally cheating because he had an accident then made a bit more on the potty, but I did it to reinforce the concept of being rewarded.)
  • We've downloaded new games on the ipad as an alternate prize, thinking the candies and stickers in the jar aren't cutting it, to no avail.
  • I've been trying to convince myself that since he's actually trying, or saying he's trying, that's progress, but seriously, he's messing up three diapers a day doing this (because it's not coming all at once), nearly the amount he used before potty training, and when I say diaper, I include Pull Ups, too because that's what he wears out of the house - and those are NOT cheap.  
Everyone keeps telling me that poopy in the potty takes time, and I get that.  But what do I do in the meantime, while he's NOT napping and completely ruining our evenings because he's so cranky and tired?  How do I convince him if he'd just go on the potty, he could fall asleep for nap and we'll ALL BE SO MUCH HAPPIER?

Anxiously awaiting your wisdom.,
Buried in Poop

Sunday, February 19, 2012

But It Was No Booger...

I'm becoming concerned that as a mother of all boys, my life for the next 15 or so years is going to be about gross bodily functions.  Maybe all moms feel this way, but the older the boys get, the more they amaze me with a different kind of gross than before.  And no, this is not a potty update.

I also used to think that my boys were just a little smarter than your average kid.

Apparently not.

Because this morning while I was getting ready for church and allowing them to watch PBS unattended, M came into my bathroom crying.  I assumed that he was upset about his brother taking a toy from him, which is usually the cause of such a scene.  It was a mylar balloon the other day. 

But now he can speak, and he was saying through his tears and sobs, "Booger!  Get the booger out!" while, of course, trying to fish it out himself.  We have lots of talks about using a tissue instead of your finger with him, but it's not quite getting through, so maybe that's where I should have known that they're not particularly advanced..  Teaching him to blow OUT instead of suck IN is also another challenge, likely why he's not quite enamored with tissues - because they don't work! 

Nevertheless, I attempted to remove said booger, and even took a peek up there because he seemed abnormally upset about this one (he usually takes care of them himself, his way).  I saw nothing, nothing came out, he just kept sniffing and calmed down.  So I took him to his room to get dressed, assuming the incident was over and the booger would come out when it was ready.

Midway through the choosing of the clothes and the dressing, the "booger" slid out. 

But it was no booger.

It was a tiny rear-view mirror, shown above next to an M&M for size comparison. 

A REAR VIEW MIRROR, did you catch that?!

I was able to remain calm, but firm, telling him that ABSOLUTELY NOTHING goes up your nose, this was a no-no, and he's lucky it came out on its own so that he didn't have to "go to the doctor and get a shot" (our typical threat).

I thought only other people's kids put things up their noses, and I thought it was only peas when they did.  This could have been awful, especially because I had NO IDEA it was even up there!  Yikes.

Investigating the car to which the rear view mirror belonged, I discovered BOTH mirrors are missing.  When asked where the other one is, M told me, "In the garbage," and while I don't actually see it there, I sure do hope it was put there at some point.  Because when they break stuff like that, I just say, "It goes in the garbage - there are some things mommy can't fix!"  Which may come back to bite me in the butt someday, but I'm willing to take my chances rather than try to glue those things back on.

Ugh.  Gross.  And little scary, mostly because I do not want to spend Sunday morning in Urgent Care and spending a fortune to get a rear view mirror removed from my toddler's nostril. 

Friday, February 17, 2012

iphone pics

 Here are a few recent iphone pics I emailed to myself tonight just to show you.  I'm not savvy enough to know how to blog them from my phone, but every now and then I get a funny photo with my iphone when I'm not prepared with my camera.  Here are a couple:

Last week, the activity table at our Wednesday morning ECFE class was filled with sunflower seeds - there is a new medium every week.  Here is evidence to prove to you that N wears his hoodie sweatshirt as often as possible!  But the real reason this is funny is because M spent much of his playtime here, "making coffee" like Daddy!  The sunflower seeds look quite like the coffee beans he "helps" Daddy grind in the morning. 
Here's the funny one, above, where he fills the container with seeds, puts his hand over the top (the way Daddy holds the lid down) and makes a "whirrrrrrrrrrr!" sound just like the grinder!  The best part is when he brings me a cup full of beans and says, "here's your coffee!"  I love, love, love it.

 Last night, I made the boys have playtime in the playroom, but instead of running around doing housework (like normal) I stayed put on the futon.  I should - and will - do that more often, because even though I wasn't down on the floor playing with them, they would still come over to me from time to time and bring me a toy.  I suppose it's good practice for them, to be doing independent play while I'm in the room, like I will be this summer, nursing their brother.  M loves his matchbox cars and started driving one all over me, then on my belly, talking to baby brother.  It only lasted a few seconds, but I got a quick shot of him playing cars with baby brother, below.   For being such a serious baby, he's becoming a very sweet and caring little boy.

Above is the photo I took of the boys potty training today.  I thought it was adorable because I knew that one of them was working on a number two (sniff, sniff) and when I told them it was potty time, they both grabbed a book and ran to the bathroom.  They sat like this, waiting, for so long that I finally snapped a pic because it was so cute!  They are finally finally getting it!  This session lasted just about 10 minutes and resulted in two pee pee hits, so it was still successful.  When the time for the poo to come came, it happened fast!  M is making great strides and generally keeping clean and dry all day.  N is keeping dry all day when he's feeling well and trying really really hard to get that poo in the potty, which is also progress, since he wasn't really trying a week ago.

By the way, his fever has been gone since late afternoon yesterday.  I don't know what it was, but I suspect a mild ear infection was the culprit.  I'll never really know.

It's Friday night again - have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Belly Pics 28 weeks

Wow, the pregnancy is going by fast!  At my appointment last week, I was reminded to come in in two weeks - eek!  That means I'm getting toward the end of this!  Also, I passed my 1 hour gestational diabetes test  - barely, one more point and I'd have failed, but passing, even with a D-, is passing.  I'll take it.

Baby Nameless Boy Three is doing well, I'm measuring on track, his heartbeat sounds good, my blood pressure is good, and he's moving like crazy.  My status on Facebook last night was about how he's a kickboxer!  He must have worn himself out kicking me from the inside out, because he's been slightly subdued since late last night.  He's still moving, just a little less, making me a little more comfortable.  Or less uncomfortable, which sounds more accurate.

Last Saturday, my wonderful mother in law watched the boys so we could have an early Valentine's Day Date.  Since I was dressed and make-upped, we took a Week 28 picture.  Also, so this kid knows I really do care, despite NOT taking bi-weekly belly pics like I did with the twins!

28 Weeks with Baby Boy Three
28 Weeks with M and N
Hm, I swear I was bigger back then (never mind I never lost all my twin baby weight).  I surely FEEL smaller this time around! Or maybe just less pregnant.

Anyhow, that's the update!  To be truthful, we are narrowing the name selection down to just a few, so he'll have a name, even if we have to write down our list and pull one out of a hat! 

Also, I need to make a correction to today's previous ipad post: I graduated MAGNA cum laude, not summa cum laude.  Thanks for keeping me humble, Hubs.

Bonus Pic: here's N choosing his very first Poopy Prize Jar Prize: it was a dum-dum.  He wised up the next time and pulled out a ring pop (yuck).
ALWAYS with the hood.  He's wearing it again today!

Experimenting with the iPad

Today is the third day N is staying in due to an annoying low grade temp. I'm glad it's nothing more, but it's caused him to miss school - Daddy and M had a social outing to school and the flower shop to pick out my Valentine's "roses" (aka begonias) - and to cancel hosting a play date at our house today.

So now the boys and I are sitting at the table doing play dough and I'm thinking I haven't blogged in almost a week. Hubs has a me iPad, which he generously shares with me (when he's home) so I thought I'd test out its blogging capabilities. So far, it's easier than my iPhone, but typing is harder than my desktop, despite being told its just like a keyboard. Guess it will take time.

Next I,ll try to upload the play dough pics I just took. Here goes....

Not working. I can't choose the "choose image" button on this device just like I can't on my iPhone which is why they are sans photos when I blog on the phone. Surely ther is a fix for this? Is it a blogger issue or just me? Maybe Bonnie will know.

She's the awesome twin mom whose blog I love, (try insert link then have blogger tell me it won't ave due to errors) Hm, doesn't look like that like is gonna work either. Just use the link on the left of the page to check out her blog. Last month she posted about iPad apps her boys like to play and we downloaded several of them for our kids to play as a poop-on-the-potty reward when it appeared the poopy prize jar wasn't working.

Side note: Prize jar is beginning to work. M has gone several time this week and N twice, but since he's not been feeling well, he's had more accidents. Frustrating, but par for the course, I suppose. M has been choosing those nasty ring pops over iPad apps. Thank goodness there is only one left. I'd remove it, but he knows it's there.

Verdict: better than a phone blog update, but not by much. Blogs without pics are terribly boring. Maybe they'll finally nap this afternoon so I can get to my trusty rusty desktop. And I can't stand the auto correct feature- makes me look completely dumb like I can't spell, which is far from true. I won second place in the Bay County spelling bee in sixth grade. Among other literary accomplishments, like graduating summa cum laude with an English major, but iPad is no respecter of persons.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Sushi and Rodin: Typical Thursday

We're very high class here, making sushi rolls and enlightening our children with French artists.

Special thanks to Daddy's iphone and Google Images for today's pictures.  Have a great weekend, everyone!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Broken Glass, Happy Home

Twice in two weeks, I've ushered the boys downstairs in order to clean up broken glass. Both were accidents, both were because M broke something. It occurred to me today: our home is beginning to look like we've been married a long time because now the kids are breaking our wedding gifts.

Last week it was a lovely handmade clock that has been with us through three moves in two states, crashed to the floor in a million pieces. In its place hangs a $5 Target special in navy and clashes horrifically with our decor. I'm no interior decorator, but I'm positive it shouldn't hang there, aesthetically speaking. However, I simply CAN'T go without a clock on that wall. So there it hangs, tick-tocking its way into my sub conscience. But the boys love it. They love to tell the story of the "old clock broke, in the garbage, new clock on the wall!". Not sure if I'll change it to a prettier one, the storytelling is so cute.

Today it was yet another one of my favorite drinking glasses that match our wedding gift stoneware, which, come to think of it, no longer matches our decor (not into blue anymore) but DOES match the ugly clock. I think I'm down to three from eight.

I guess it's forcing me to keep my floors clean. And keep me humble, because in four short months, Hubs and I will celebrate our ten year anniversary - which actually IS a long time! Not on a second honeymoon, not in a vow-renewal ceremony, but together in our mismatched-decor-incomplete-glass-set house with our three wonderful sons, maybe just maybe sleeping 5 hours at a time.

Who could ask for more?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

First Prize

We've had to up the ante in Operation Potty Training.  Apparently, we are in Phase Two.  I didn't know there was a phase two when I started this nearly a month ago, but for us, at least, there is.

And it's all about - you guessed it- number  two.

Yesterday I wrote about our weekend shopping trip to Sam's Club, where, amongst many other items, we purchased these:
A big box of Pull Ups and another huge package of disinfectant wipes because we are running out of the teeny tiny packs they sell at my used-to-be-normal-shopping stores.  You also see a jar labeled "Poo Prize."  It's full of all the random Halloween and Christmas candy that I didn't want to give the boys or eat myself, which was stored in the cupboard and promptly forgotten about.  Until Saturday, when I found myself with giant boxes of cereal, animal crackers, cans of green beans and random snacks and nowhere to put them.

I was forced to clean out the cupboards, whereupon I found said icky candy, and heard my sister M's voice, "I had to make a poopy prize box for S because he quit pooping when he started preschool.  I spent a small fortune at the Dollar Store, but it worked."  Voila!  A poopy prize jar was born!

That was Saturday.  We introduced the Poopy Prize Jar with much fanfare and excitement.  Today is Tuesday and NO ONE has come forward to claim a prize, (ie I should be folding that load of kid laundry but I'm blogging instead).


I was talking with my mom on the phone while the boys played in the playroom before dinner, when I noticed M was becoming agitated, then started walking funny.  "Bye, Mom, gotta go!"  I knew she'd understand when I called her back later.

It took much convincing that poopy LIKES to come out on the little potty, not backwards on the big, big potty. (That's when my guys straddle the toilet facing backwards to pee - thanks to my mommy friends for that tip - it works, but only for pee.)  Then more convincing and some storybook reading to get him to actually stay seated.  Now, M has done this before but not in many days and not for a Poopy Prize Jar prize. Praise the Lord!  It happened halfway through the story!

M has been wanting a "big big sucker" (ring pop) since he saw them in the jar, but I stayed strong and kept repeating my mantra of, "When you go poopy in the potty you can have one."  Despite it being 5:30 and right before dinner, I didn't care and let him eat the whole sticky disgusting thing, in hopes that it would inspire N to give it a whirl.

He did give it a shot and made a number one hit, resulting in a standard M&M reward (which are losing their appeal at 3+weeks, btw).  We celebrated that he kept his Pull Up dry all morning during our outing and his unders dry all night at home, which is an accomplishment in itself.  One step at a time, I keep reminding myself.  
First Prize - strawberry Ring Pop

Ascending the throne
I took the second pic to show you what our bathrooms look like now.  There are two stools - one for the toilet and one for the sink, not shown, a toilet ring, a little potty, a container of disinfecting wipes, a container of baby wipes, a few books (on the sink and under M's feet), as well as a pile of pull ups, diapers, and underpants also not shown on the sink.  It's a hot mess, and both of the bathrooms the boys use look like this.  

But I'll live with the hot mess because I just took out the garbage bin and there is less trash in there than normal - I think we're finally reducing our diaper carbon footprint.

It was a pretty good day here in Potty Training Land, I mean, at our house.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Shopping Revelation

This weekend our fun family outing was to Sam's Club - you know, the discount warehouse store?  We bought the membership three years ago when I was pregnant and freaking out about buying diapers for twins.  I've debated whether it was a good investment since it turns out I can get good diaper deals elsewhere as well, but since I can renew free every year using my Discover card points, I keep the membership and go every now and then.
M and N, June 2010, going to Sam's Club


They are eating like little horses.  It's quite unbelievable.  With the exception of new foods, like, oh, say a casserole or pork chop (heaven forbid) they will eat every meal and sometimes ask for seconds.  And sometimes, thirds.  But today, M even ate a CASSEROLE THAT HE'D NEVER SEEN BEFORE. Gasp!  Literally, I gasped!

This is a BIG CHANGE from the way they (okay, M) has been eating for about a year.  N is "healthy as a horse" when it comes to his relationship with food.  The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, if ya catch my drift (wink wink;)

However, last weekend I picked up a box of Froot Loops because they were on sale and I had a coupon, yadayadayada.  Since they were sweet and brightly colored, I knew the boys would like them, but I was not prepared for them to inhale the whole box in four days.  Yes, FOUR DAYS.  Hubs and I didn't touch them, I swear, and they boys are eating them out of my old latte mugs with kiddie spoons. Because otherwise they just pour the milk everywhere at the end when they drink it - since I knew you would ask. They are just two and half!  I am just completely floored that they've eaten and entire box of cereal by themselves.  I didn't expect this for years.

And they have a brother on the way, who, by the looks of it, is going to rival them in the height/weight/eating department. 

I had a revelation this weekend: 

I am going to be warehouse shopping for the REST OF MY LIFE.

(Deep breath) I am okay with that. 

Really, I am.