Friday, January 27, 2012

I love potty talk...

...and not the kind you're thinking of.

Let me start by saying both girls are completely potty trained!! Yeah! But they still ask me to sit by them while they are going to the bathroom. So they sit on the toilet and I sit across from them on the stool we have so they can reach the sink. They hold my hands and tell me so many things;

"Poop hurts your stomach until it comes out. But it doesn't come out of your stomach it comes out of your bum. " (Mo)

"Um. I pee and poop at the same time." (Oak)

"When I poop, my eyes cry. Maybe because it's stinky." (Mo)

"Oooo. Did you hear that?" (one of my personal favorites!) (both)

"You're a big girl, too. You get potty candy?" (Oak)

"Bye stinky poop! Go far away!" (Oak)

"After you flush (plush) the water jiggles." (Mo)

There's also talk that doesn't involve bodily functions;

"Um. My mom is at work. She misses me." (M0)

"Papa is mom's dad!" (oak)

"Heyhey thinks he can go potty. He doesn't know he's not smart enough yet." (Mo)

So, I love potty talk. I get to sit with them and visit. Won't be too much longer and we won't have that quality time. But I'll always have this post to embarrass them with!!!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Random thoughts

My mind has been racing lately, but at the same time my thoughts seem like sludge. I think and think, and then realize there was nothing to the ideas floating around in my brain. It's not a bad thing, just kinda.... ?

I worry a lot about the kids. I know. Most of them are grown up and have families of their own now. But still. What if I didn't teach C well enough to treat his wife and daughters as the daughters of God that they are? And what if I didn't help him realize how powerful he is when he's worthy of the priesthood? What about Lou? For heaven's sake, she has an investment in heaven...have I taught her all I can so she knows what she needs to do to be with that little man again? Does she realize how favored she is in the sight of the Lord to be the mother of such a perfect angel? And TJ and B? They seem so...little? She's my 'first baby'. Have I given her the strength and courage to be all she is entitled to? All that she should be? And then Alex...Does he know how much I love him? Does he know how many people love him? Will I ever be able to teach him that he is so special that he had to share his life with multiple families and many, many friends, because just one family couldn't handle this much love?

I think of these things. I get discouraged, I get worried, I get happy. Yeah. All at the same time. I am so proud of my family and the choices they have made in their lives. My children married incredible people who love them despite my lack of parenting skills. Heck! They love them in spite of me!! Their lives are amazing. Their accomplishments heart stopping. They always have been great kids.

I guess I've been thinking these things because of someone else's trials. A good friend's daughter is fighting melanoma cancer. She's on her 3rd round of this war, and giving her all to win. She has three beautiful sons to help give her strength when there's no strength to give. She has a husband that was her high school sweetheart, who loves her not because she's beautiful, but because he loves her. And she has a whole basket full of siblings who would do anything to help her.

Daily I hear of someone else who is sick (cancer seems rampant all of a sudden) or sad, or in need. What can I do? What can I give?

I can pray. I can hope. I can have faith that I have a Father in Heaven who not only listens to my prayers, and your prayers and their prayers, but knows how we feel. Knows what we mean when we stutter through our prayers not knowing how to express the twist that has knotted our heart out of concern. He knows the fear Alisa is feeling, and knows how to help her through that fear. He knows how worried her family and friends are for her, and if we listen with our heart we will know what we can do on our end to help this trial be a battle of love.

And as far as my seemingly petty plight for my children who are healthy, here and with loved ones? Well. I can still teach them things I maybe overlooked as they were growing up. I can be the example I desire to be to them. The strength they need to hold onto. The love they need to feel when scared.

I am their mom.

Christmas and New Years

Here's what we gave the neighbors and friends for Christmas this year. I show you this to tell you a funny story.
It's a roll of toilet paper hung by some ribbon, decorated and with this saying on it...
"There's one room in the house that's usually slighted, when decorations are hung and candles are lighted. So hang this wreath on the bathroom door to mark the spot and add decor,"
So Mike and I drive around to deliver these together, and about 3 times Mike would get in the car and say, "They sure got a kick out of that." or "They said it was so you!" and some of the people had the nerve to say that to my face..."So cute! Should have known you would do something like that!" And then when we got home, there's a message on our machine. "I know you're still out delivering the wreaths, but I had to call and tell you how funny I thought that gift was. Natalie, that is so you! I will think of you every time I go in the bathroom now."
So, how do I take this? I even asked Mike, "What do they mean 'this is so me?' and his reply?
"It means you're a butt wipe!"
Good thing I didn't take that offensively. We actually laughed for about 1/2 an hour!! And we still use that line when appropriate. (And don't forget about my post earlier where I said I've wiped way too many butts in my lifetime. So, I am literally a butt wipe!)
Anyway, it added some fun to our holidays. I didn't take too many pictures during the holidays, but here is a gift of love from TJ and B.
A new mirror for my bathroom!! TJ broke my other one, but that's ok because I love this one so much more!!
Someone told me I don't have any pics of me on here, so here's my pic. I sent this to Mike on his phone and said, "Here I am lying in the sun like a dog." It sure felt good. At the time we had an icky inversion and the sun was no where to be found until this day. And I had been sick for weeks with a sinus infection, so laying down in the sun felt warm and comfy. Too bad it only lasted about 10 minutes - both the chance to lay down and the sun shining!
This isn't a very good picture, but we lit some fireworks on New Year's Eve. It was a quiet night; dinner with C, K and Mo (a tradition of fondue and junk food), watched a movie then lit a few fireworks. Our neighbors across the street joined in, then we went in and were in bed before midnight. I got my New Year's kiss, rolled over and slept sweetly.
Happy 2012. May we all find joy especially in times when sorrow and worry seems deep.

My goofy girls

Thought I would just share a few things about my little ladies! I love having these 2 around so much. I will admit, there are days that I think, "Seriously? Can I handle this?" For instance, they are going through the potty training routine... I've wiped enough butts these past few weeks that I'm sick of it!! I guess it doesn't help that I've always worked with children either potty training or in diapers, and of course Alex's J-Lo needs some added attention from me when the dooty has been done. Like I said, enough butts!!
N has returned since having heart surgery. And the girls are delighted! They are constantly wanting to hold her, touch her, take care of her. This is a picture of Oak 'feeding her pizza.' It was cute because Oak would make num-num noises and eventually N started doing them whenever something was placed by her mouth.

We make a lot of huts to play in while they are here. I have to laugh because I've been a mom for 25 years, a pre-school teacher for 30 years and I am just now figuring out the secret to making a hut! (Use a fitted sheet to wrap around the tops of chairs. It doesn't fall down!) But obviously the sheet I used this day needed a bit more Bounce in the dryer!
And then there's these special moments; Our neighbor the other day had a pipe break. After the city fixed it they placed these cones out. I didn't think anything about it until we walked out the other day and she said, "Look, Nanny! Frank Frank has giant carrots in his yard!" Ha! Giant carrots. Oh, and Frank Frank is what Alex calls our neighbor Frank, and now our whole family calls him that. Even my dad calls him that! So here's a pic of the girls pretending to eat the giant carrots, which is what they do every time we walk past.
When Oak was really small, she just stared at you. Actually she just stared straight through you. So, TJ and I would say, "This special moment brought to you by..."
When I took this picture, that was the captioning I first thought of.
I'm very lucky to be a part of all of these special moments.

A bit about Alex

That's my boy! He's holding a picture of his brothers and sisters that live in Oklahoma (with Daddy Ernie and Ashley). Every once in a while he just grabs their picture off of his bedroom door and carries it around with him saying, "I love my brothers and sisters!" (Especially Collin! He talks about him a lot!!)
This picture was taken a while ago - end of summer- but I think it's cute. Trying to be a 'big kid' but grinning so big his face is about to pop because he's by a Star Wars guy!!!
I need to update about the results of Alex's echo cardiogram and what our course of action is; let me start by saying we had the echo done because Alex is supposed to wear a CPAP mask all night to help with his sleep apnea, and has started taking it off during the night. Because of this, and since he hasn't had an echo done in a long time, his pulmonologist ordered an echo. I posted a picture of it in an earlier post. Nice, comfy room with a TV right in the line of sight for Alex to watch a movie of his choice, and I got to watch what's on the ultrasound screen and was fascinated even though I had no idea what was what. Those things are hard to decipher to the layman's eye!
The pulmonologist called 2 days later with the results; his right artery was thickened (because it's working too hard) and the pressure was 25 and according to her should be 14 so it was EXTREMELY high and I had to "make sure his oxygen sats stayed above 95% no matter what I had to do to keep them there." Yeah. I hung up the phone a little anxious, but knew she had placed a call to the cardiologist of choice (he's the expert in people with Down Syndrome who have pulmonary hypertension, which is the medical terminology for what Al has) so I just kept the phone by me and waited for his call.
A week later I finally called and scheduled an appointment. When we first got there we had to get a chest x-ray done, then an EKG and blood pressure. Alex is really good with medical procedures and, once again, was a great patient. When the doctor came in, he acted like he wasn't sure why we were there. His heart size is fine, according to the x-ray. His EKG and blood pressure were good, and yes, the echo showed a thickening of the artery, but that could have been a diagonal measurement of the artery instead of a straight across measurement, and a 26 blood pressure flow wasn't that bad. He suggested we do an angiogram (place a catheter through his femoral artery into his heart to get a better measurement of both the artery thickness and the pressure) then if there is hypertension, he can put medicine directly into the heart to find out which kind will work best for Alex.
He was so blase about it that I left feeling, "OK. No biggie." So we scheduled the angiogram for February 3rd. I will be better about blogging the results so everyone knows what is what.
I am so glad we live so near Primary Children's Medical Center. I know others who have the same love/hate relationship with the hospital as we do; love the care we receive, hate that we have to receive it.
I will keep you in touch!