Thursday, February 28, 2013

first trip to the dentist

I figured since our pediatrician has asked us at Theo's last two check-ups if we have taken him to the dentist (and tried to push a local pediatric dentist's card on us when we said "no"), I ought to try to squeeze this in before his three year check up in a couple weeks. Disregard the fact that I'm freaking out because my BABY boy is almost THREE...

Anyway, what's "the" age to take a child to the dentist?  I've heard everything from when they get their first flippin' tooth to when they start school.  We're about halfway between and I guess these early visits can be considered trial runs for when he has more intense appointments in the future.

He went today.  I chose to take him to the dentist that Ryan and I go to for convenience, with an open mind that they may not do a great job with toddlers.  Can I still call him a toddler?  He seems too old for that.  I digress.

I wasn't sure what to expect from Theo. He did well, but he was not a fan of the gritty toothpaste or the bright light.  I was shocked at how well the staff did with Theo.  Above and beyond for sure.  If they had not been so great, maybe Theo would have not done as well as he did.  He just seemed like such a big boy sitting in that cool chair.  The hygienist let him go up and down as many times as he wanted. She showed him the x-ray machines and let him pick out his favorite Lightning McQueen toothbrush and let him push buttons on every single thing.  So kind and patient.

Helping suck the water out of daddy's mouth.
Getting a closer look.  Disregard that nice bedhead he's got going on.
Spraying the water in daddy's mouth. P.S. I was cracking up this whole time.  I'm sure Ryan thoroughly enjoyed having a 2 year old dental assistant today. 
Theo's turn!
Having second thoughts about this bib.
The light's a little bright, lady.
Being very cooperative!
Much better!

Helping Dr. Rob take another look at dad.
Checking out those pretty pearly whites in the mirror.

Got his picture on the Wall of Super Duper Patients.

Along with every other child patient they see.

Such a big boy. I don't know why this milestone feels like such a big deal - I guess maybe because it is coinciding with his 3rd birthday next Friday.  Crazy!  All I know is that I look at his long legs and engage in thoughtful conversation with him and it's hard to believe how much he's changed in three short years.  I just love this little boy. 


Wednesday, February 27, 2013

a letter to my sons: every night, before I go to bed.

Every night, before I go to bed.

I shuffle down the hallway, sliding one foot past the other on the slick wood floors to avoid making any noise, until I'm standing just outside your door.  I flip on the hallway light so I don't trip over a toy carelessly left in the middle of your bedroom floor. And so I can see your face.  I always pause at the door with my fingertips resting on the handle, just for a moment, silently asking myself if I should risk it.  With little hesitation, I slowly press down on the handle and gently push your door open just an inch or two and peer into the darkness.  I wait.  I listen for rustling blankets or changes in your breathing.  Moments later, I crack the door wide enough so that when I turn sideways, I can easily slip in.  I don't want to let in any more light than I need.  I stand still again, waiting for my eyes to adjust.  Listening to the rhythm of your breath.  In. Out. In. Out.  Like waves in the ocean lapping the shore. Calm. Predictable.

I tiptoe over to where you sleep and admire your innocence.  Your sweetness.  I marvel at the little person you are growing into every day and at the fact that your father and I literally created you.  Brought you into this crazy world.  I pull your covers up to your chin to keep you warm throughout the night because I anticipate that I won't see you again until morning.  I do the same thing to your brother.

Every night, before I go to bed.

I want your peaceful faces to be the last thing I see before I fall asleep.  These are a few of my favorite moments of each day that I take to bed with me.  I go to bed knowing you are warm, safe, and content.  Every day, I go to bed knowing you were kissed and hugged and told that you are loved.  I go to bed appreciating that you have a warm, safe place to lay your head at night.  That you have food in your belly and sweet dreams in your head.  That you are fortunate enough, that we all are fortunate enough, to not know the difference.  Nothing can replace the feeling of your head on my shoulder, your arms around my neck, or your voice in my ear whispering "I love you, mommy."  I love the chaos and the hustle and bustle that we repeat, day after day. 

But these moments, every night before I go to bed....they are my favorite.


Saturday, February 23, 2013

snapshot Saturday

I had the opportunity to use my camera a lot today, between a play date with our friend Dawson and our babysitter's son's first birthday party.  Here are some snapshots from our day.  p.s. I am surrounded by boys!


Dexter was not clothed when Dawson got here because he had just dumped a cup of Gatorade on himself.  Never did get around to dressing the kid.
And Theo?  Well, he just wanted to wear pajamas today.
Boys, boys, boys.


Alien eyes.

The birthday boy.
And his pretty mama.

And finally, my very favorite from the day:
He has the prettiest blue eyes!

Hope your Saturday was nice, too. 

Friday, February 22, 2013

i know you love me

I read a post by Heather recently that I just loved - she talked about all the ways she knew her adorable daughter, Emi, loves her.  Or at least made her feel like she does.  So I'm stealing.

I feel loved by Dexter when I pick him up and he squeeeeeeezes my neck and gives me the biggest hug (while saying "squeeeeeze!").  I feel loved when he lays his little head on my shoulder, even if it's just for a few seconds.  To me, there's  no better feeling in the world than my kids' heads on my shoulder.  I feel loved by him when he brings me book after book after book after book and he climbs into my lap to listen to a story.  He'll do this for as long as I will and I love the closeness, the stillness, and the cuddles.  Sometimes when I'm bending over to help him with something, he'll reach up to give me a kiss totally unprompted.  I feel loved when he asks me to "chiss" his boo boos.  As annoying as it is, I feel loved when he cries out for me in the middle of the night and my presence is enough to calm him down.  I feel loved when he still lets me rock him in the glider.  I love my little snuggle bug and I'm willing to spend as much time cuddling with him as possible because I know it won't always be this way.

I feel loved by Theo when he asks me to do a puzzle with him.  He's seeking approval and praise and thrives on it.  He wants his mama to be proud of him.  I feel loved by Theo when he asks ME how MY day was.  I feel loved by Theo when he says "mama, you're my best friend."  I feel loved by Theo when he asks to watch a movie and then lets me hold him in my lap the whole time.  I feel loved by Theo when I put him to bed at night and he says "mama, will you snuggle up with me?"  Of course.  (As soon as Dexter goes to sleep.  Otherwise, he'll get jealous and cry, cry, cry).  I feel loved by Theo when he runs to the door every day when I pick him up at the babysitter's and says "MAMA! You're here!" and he hurries to show me or tell me what he's been doing.

I feel loved, or maybe I just feel love, when I watch my boys play together.  When I hear Theo offering to help Dexter. To share a treat with him.  Asking him if he's okay when he cries.  When Dexter asks to snuggle up with Theo in his big bed.  When Dexter follows Theo around all day because he wants to be just like him.  With him.  Near him.  I feel loved knowing how much by boys love each other and hope that they know that they are each other's greatest gift - a gift that only me and their dad could give them.

If you have little kids, you know that they do not always make you feel loved.  It's good to remember how much they really do need and love you sometimes.


Monday, February 18, 2013

v-day with my boys

Last year, I had big plans for how Valentine's Day would go and I remember that I was disappointed. (Oh, I just have to laugh looking back at that post.  And Dex was sooo tiny!) This year I had no expectations, procrastinated until the day before to buy the boys anything, and the day came and went just about like any other.  With a couple of exceptions -- 1.  Ryan's parents dropped by with bakery cupcakes for the boys.  2.  I did get them each a book and a store-bought, heart-shaped crispy rice treat.  Fancy, aren't I?

The crispy rice treats waited until Friday to be eaten, because those cupcakes deserved top billing for sure.  I'm not saying that I took a bite of Theo's and/or Dexter's.  I'm just saying I bet they were good. Pics!

They polished those puppies off in record time and were not interested in the books I got them at all.  Even though they both about made me cry when I read them to myself at Kohl's the day before. 

For Dexter:
For Theo:

Oh, right. Valentine's is supposed to be for us grown ups, too, right?  But doesn't everything kind of become about the kiddos once you have them?  We did get out for a nice dinner on Friday night by participating in a kid-swap with a couple of friends.  They watched our boys Friday night and we watched their boy Saturday night. I have to say that I enjoyed Saturday as much as Friday. It was just fun to have a friend over and watch the boys interact with their buddy. Must. Do. This. More often!

Hope your Valentine's Day was better than the average day. 


Sunday, February 17, 2013

PINspiring recipes

I'll admit that I didn't "get" Pinterest at first.  I went to the website a few times.  Didn't get it.

I started working at my new job almost 6 months ago and remember having a conversation with a (now) friend there, who asked me "did you see that on Pinterest?"  Believe it or not, this question dumbfounded me.  I kindly said no, but was thinking to myself " Why would I have? Is the whole world on Pinterest?"

Fast forward a few months and here I am. A Pinterest junkie.  If I don't know what's for dinner?  Pinterest.  Need a lo-cal recipe for dieting friends who are stopping by for lunch?  Pinterest.  Decorating ideas for the boys' bedroom?  Pinterest.  It's clearly the place to go for IDEAS.  Duh.  How could I have been so blind?

So I thought I'd share with you some of the Pinterest recipes I've tried recently.
Looks amazing, right?  Well, I thought so too.  On Pinterest, I saw the chicken teriyaki and the quick note beneath the photo gave instructions to fix the chicken in the crock pot. It wasn't until I threw everything in that I realized this looked, and was going to look, nothing like the photo. I went back to Pinterest and followed the link to the actual page with the recipe (which I've attached) and found that they had marinated chicken and then cooked it in the skillet with totally different ingredients.  Cool. Thanks.  So I went to the store and bought 2 different types of teriyaki sauce, mixed them, and sweetened it up with a bit of honey.  However.  The rice was amazing and the finished product was really good. I'm not ever sure if the boys will eat stuff like this but man, did they gobble it up!  Only regret now is that we didn't have leftovers.

The Pizzadilla.  It was pretty good, but what I really like about this is the opportunity to play with it and change it around.  Any ingredients would make this taste different. I have a quesadilla maker so that made this super simple for me.

Crockpot chicken taco chili. Wow. This was amazing!  200 calories per cup and packed with so much flavor.  I couldn't see eating this with a spoon so we had it on tortillas (with cheese and sour cream) and/or on salad.  This will become a staple in this house!

Skinny Brownie Batter Dip. I haven't personally made this but I've had (lots of) it. My PIN pal at work made it for Superbowl Sunday and brought some in the next day.  We must just remind ourselves that eating this will not, in fact, make us skinny. It's so decadent and you really feel like you're cheating that diet! 

Hubby's Favorite Casserole.  I realize that this photo does nothing to make this meal sound appetizing, but it seriously was so good, especially warmed up the next day.  I think when I found this, I was searching for a recipe comprised of ingredients I already had.  YUM. 

Crockpot Cheesy Chicken and Rice.  This is in the crock pot right now.  Oh.  Did I fail to mention that the crock pot is just about my favorite thing ever?  Hopefully it's good.  It didn't sound amazing just based on the ingredients but the person that writes about it makes it sound like this is the only thing I will ever want to eat again for all of my life, so we'll see.  

Things I want to try soon: 

So, be honest.  Am I the last person east of the Mississippi to get on board (ha, see what I did there?) with Pinterest?  Sigh, I've missed so much.  I'd write more, but there's pinning to be done...see you over there!