Saturday, December 27, 2008

mERry christmas

We like to put the 'ER' in Merry Christmas...wouldn't be exciting if we didn't. It never fails that every year that we're up here we're either at the hospital or going to a funeral. Campbell has been really battling a yucky chest cold. We've been giving him breathing treatments left and right for almost a month now. We took him to a clinic here on Tuesday and they gave him another treatment, checked his oxygen level and it was at 100% so they sent us home to continue the nebulizing treatments. I swear when my boys outgrow needing breathing treatments we are going to have a ceremonial bonfire to torch that thing. I can't stand it!

So my otherwise ridiculously happy and smiling baby was just as fussy as could be on Christmas Eve and Christmas. We kept giving him Motrin but he still wasn't getting rid of his fever. I heard him let out a little cry and went to check on him and he was breathing so fast so I counted and he was taking 54 breaths per minute and his stomach was really distended every time he took a breath. We took his temp and Justin pulled it out from under his arm after it jumped to 102 within seconds. We call the nurse back in TX and they said we needed to have him checked out. We head to the ER on Christmas night at 11:00, they get us right in. They immediately take his temp...it's 104.7! I start tearing up. Fevers make me panic. I know it's a normal body response to an illness but they make me so nervous.

They load him with Tylenol to get his fever down. Next came chest x-rays, another breathing treatment along with some serious whacks to his back to get him to break up the mucous, nasal swap to test for RSV, and the blood work. There were four nurses holding him down trying to draw his blood. He and I were both crying. At about 2:30 a.m. all tests came back normal. No pneumonia, no RSV...just a really nasty upper respiratory infection. AND after all that, they said all we could do was just keep doing what we're doing...breathing treatments...AGH! So much for that bonfire anytime soon.

So it's not exactly an ideal first Christmas for our sweet little guy but I'm so thankful everything is OK with him.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Stupid Dog

I'll fully admit that Bandit was totally our kid before our kids. He has definitely been demoted on the priority scale that's for sure. The stupid dog (God love him) has caused more anxiety than anything else in my life. We went to Europe 4 years ago, only for him to run away the first time the housesitter came to let him out. There was a full-fledge Bandit alert for him and all our friends were looking for him only for him to come bouncing back two weeks later on his own. The following Christmas we brought him with us to Kentucky so he wouldn't run away...what did he do? Run away, of course! A month after we had Campbell, he decided it had been four long years since he'd had an adventure. So he went for just a short little day trip when our cleaning ladies accidentally let him out, but once again he came back on his own accord.

We discovered that Bandit loves our neighbors so we switch dog sitting duty with each other's dogs while we're out of town. Over the years, it's been a perfect match. Well yesterday our neighbor called to say Bandit had run away. Either he's got a little girlfriend that he sneaks off to see or he has some major emotional problems that he can't take it when we're not there. At this point, I'm thinking you know maybe it's just not meant to be with this crazy dog. Justin and I were bummed of course but also thinking of how nice it will be to not have to get up early in the morning to let him out or deal with accidents in the house. Sure enough, our neighbor calls today to say that he came back home and was barking at the front door. He comes home every time on his own (minus the time he ran away in Kentucky and we found him). I'm picturing that he's running away like he's some rebellious teenager, meets his girlfriend for some wild rendevous, and then realizes after a couple of hours just how cush his life is at home and heads home.

As much as he drives me crazy, I still love that crazy dog. Now let's just see if he runs away again before we get home...

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Roommates

We're here in Kentucky visiting Gram and Pop and having a great time. All-in all, the trip here was pretty good. Campbell decided to spike a fever on the plane and had some fussy moments but I'll take 2 hours worth of a little fussiness compared to the best 17 hour car ride. I definitely knew to bring some Benadryl to drug Cam but lesson learned to bring Tylenol on the plane ride back home.

I love that my in-laws are practically a daycare with their house set up. It makes traveling so much easier and less stressful. They have a grandkids' bedroom with a crib and a twin bed so last night was the first night that the boys have slept in the same room. We put on Christmas music but had two episodes of Nolan crying hysterically because he heard Manheim Steamroller and apparently that music is the equivalent of watching a horror movie to him. That was quickly followed by another crying episode because he needed to potty. At this point, I give him the "You need to be brave" speech because I'm so exhausted after our traveling day. I asked him if he knows what brave means and he responds, "it means to be quiet." Well, close enough! Campbell screams two hours later but amazingly enough during all of this crying and all these wake up calls, they don't wake each other up! Who needs sleep anyway? Oh wait...I do!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Best Christmas pageant ever

Have I mentioned that I love Christmas? Every year the boys' daycare puts on an adorable Christmas program. Nolan has been everything from an angel, to a sheep, to a shepherd this year. My mom, the seamstress, will not be outdone by any other grandma when it comes to costumes. This year was a hit. Last year not so much...what's the saying a picture is worth a thousand words?
Nolan last year as a sheep

So Nolan has turned into quite the performer. He had antlers on and even a little dance number. Campbell played an ever-so-fitting angel. They had two cribs decorated with tulle and ribbon and during the nativity scene rolled their cribs down the aisle with all the babies and their halos....cutest EVER! Nolan has taken his new role as a shepherd to heart. Now when I say, "Goodnight, angel," he corrects me and says, "I'm not an angel, I'm a shepherd!"





Monday, December 15, 2008

Smooth Talker

Bedtime is one of my favorite times of the day. Not so much the time leading up to it though. The baths, teeth brushing, putting on jammies are more of a chore than anything. But as soon as Nolan is in that bed and I'm lying down with him reading books, I just treasure that time with him. Books are read, prayers are said and then if I'm not exhausted by the 30-45 minutes that it takes getting ready for bed, we sing songs. Tonight was one of those nights that reminds me of how much I love bedtime. It went something like this:

Nolan: Mommy will you be my partner?

Me: Partner? For what?

Nolan: For Christmas

Me: You want me to be your partner for Christmas?

Nolan: Yea. Will you be my partner in my heart?

I don't really remember my response because I was about to squeeze him to pieces. He's got a way with words and all I can say is someday he really is going to sweep some girl off her feet with that smooth talking.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Giggle on command

There is just something about hearing a baby laugh that will put anyone in a good mood. Campbell is the most ticklish baby ever, not to mention he thinks that I'm a stand up comic. He will laugh seriously at just about anything. He just melts my heart! It reminds me of one of my favorite videos of Nolan laughing (see post from September 26, 2008). This is exactly the reason why I race out the door at work to see my boys. It's like Christmas everyday to go see them!

video

Friday, December 12, 2008

Candy Cane Twins

Ok, I know that sometimes it freaks me out how much Nolan and Campbell look alike as babies but this is just spooky...

Campbell


Nolan

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Santa's watching mommy too

Justin comes home the other day and says, "You're so busted!" Apparently, Nolan told Daddy on the way to school one morning, "That F150 was going too slow and made mommy go crazy! When cars go too slow, she says C'MON!" Guess I should be on my best behavior for Santa and Nolan...boy they sure are sponges, aren't they?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas cookies

Christmas FFF #2-making sugar cookies

My mom makes some mean sugar cookies. We usually have them all gobbled up after we've made a couple of dozen. So I took the boys over to my brother's house and my mom, sister-in-law, and my niece Aspen cooked sugar cookies and decorated them. I couldn't believe how long Nolan's attention stayed on baking these cookies. He is a true baker! He helped roll the dough, cut the cookies, wait for them to bake, ice and even decorate them! Pretty good for a 3 year old.

Here's our little baker with apron and chef hat and all...

How cute is this mini roller...can you tell that Grandma loves to bake with her grandkids?

My niece Aspen getting so excited about baking!

Aunt Becky and Grandma helping roll the dough

Now the good stuff...icing!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Santa and his reindeer

I think I spotted Santa and his reindeer...

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The Dirty Thirty

Yep the big 3-0! Can't believe it's actually here. I must say it's the first birthday where it's really hit me. I can't complain too much about the last 30 years. Everyone keeps telling me that the 30s are great. I really hope they're right. It's hard to believe that I've known Justin now for a decade. We had a date night last night and my parents watched the boys. We went to dinner without bouncing a baby on a knee or threatening a 3 year old to eat or else. Then we went to the Jubilee Theatre, an African American theater, for a great musical called "Uncle Duz Christmas". I loved it and it was taking everything in me to not sing along or jump on stage and dance. When we got home both my parents were snoring dead asleep on our couches. Guess the boys wore them out. Looks like they got a dose of my life everyday!

Tonight we enjoyed our awesome downtown and went to see Santa. Nolan by this time is a pro with Santa and Cam of course was oblivious to the whole thing and wouldn't you know my professional spitter upper yacked all over Santa and his pretty suit and white gloves. Santa said in all his 7 years of coming to downtown Fort Worth, he's never had a kid do that. That Campbell sure is a trailblazer of all sorts...


Friday, December 5, 2008

He knows when you are sleeping...

My sister learned to use Santa as leverage for her three girls and I must say that it's been working. When Nolan is acting up I tell him that I'm going to call Santa Claus. I sometimes get out the phone and "call" Santa when Nolan isn't being such a good little boy. I also call Santa when he's being especially great and being a good helper. One time I even got Granddad in on the act and actually called. Nolan talked to "Santa" and he was amazed and even said that Santa was really funny. One day after being the sweetest little boy, I told him how proud I was of him for being such a good helper and he looks up in the sky behind him like someone's spying on him and says, "Is Santa watching?"

One of the things that is endearing about this stage is how honest Nolan is about himself. This week he confessed that he got put in time out at school for pushing one of his friends, Cayden, at school. I told him how that wasn't a very good choice and Santa wouldn't be very proud. So the next day when I picked him up he volunteered how he didn't push Cayden that particular day. So when we get home he says, "Can you call Santa and tell him that I didn't push Cayden today?" I wonder what I'm going to do after Christmas...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Not so pretty in pink...

Pink eye that is. Nolan has had it 3 times in the past month and finally passed it on to Campbell. Sunday morning poor bubba couldn't open his eyes. Then guess who gets it? ME! Oh, and in both eyes. By Monday night, I couldn't see and seeing any light was like looking directly into the sun. Lucky for me, Justin works for Alcon and I have an array of antibiotics for my eye at my fingertips. I called in a sick day on Tuesday and drive to meet him squinting the entire way. So my drug dealer husband meets me in the Whataburger parking lot and I immediately give myself a good dose of drugs. Everyone is staring at me in Whataburger because it looks like I've been crying for days and I keep wiping my eyes. As I'm eating lunch, tears are pouring down onto my burger and I seriously can't see! Here I am in the parking lot, blind as a bat, and can't drive home! I sit there thinking that maybe the drops need time to settle but I still couldn't see after a good hour of taking the drops. So Justin drives me to the doctor and my mom meets me there so she can take me home afterwards. Turns out I am having a huge allergy attack on top of pink eye. She gives me a steroid shot, some Allegra and tells me to keep doing the eye drops.

Justin picks up the boys from school and thankfully my parents come save the day and help feed the family and get them ready for bed. I drug myself with some Nyquil and I'm in bed by 8:00. Next day, still can't see and I look like I've been stung in the eye with bees. Later that night, Campbell has transferred pink eye to his other eye and is up all night. Justin gets the superstar dad award for handling him most of the night with breathing treatments, meds, and rocking. This morning I woke up and could see out of one eye. I drive to school looking like a pirate and I make it until 11:00 before I can't make it anymore. I meet Justin at our pediatrician's office. I beg her to make our family better. She writes prescriptions and I immediately get them filled. Within one hour, I can tell a huge difference. HALLELUJAH! Wow, who would have thought that pink eye would have knocked me out for so long. I thought about posting a picture of my eyes, but then I thought that might not be so good when I'm famous. It could be incriminating and people might think Justin is beating me.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Gaylord Texan

Oh boy...if you thought October and November had a lot of of FFF episodes (Forced Family Fun, of course) then just wait until you see our December pics. With my birthday, four other other family member's birthdays all in late November/December, and Christmas...it's a miracle we are standing at the end of the holiday season. But that's what that season of Christmas is all about, right? Spending time with each other. As a parent, it's so hard not to get wrapped up in the consumerism of the holiday season and give your children all they could want and more but I remember that I never felt like I went without growing up. I certainly did not get everything that I wanted especially those years that my mom was a single mom with three before she married my amazing dad who adopted me. I'm constantly questioning if what I'm doing is right and if I'm setting a good example for my boys and what I want them to remember about Christmas. So as I grudgingly put things back on the shelf in the store , I tell myself that what they have is enough. It's ironic that as much fun as I make of these triple F outings...those are the things that my boys (and I) will remember.

So...Christmas FFF #1-Gaylord Texan

This place is amazing. It's a winter wonderland even for adults. The trees, lights, gingerbread house...it's like you're at the North Pole. We waited of course to see Santa Claus and after about 30 minutes in line, we get to the front. Nolan (no big surprise after the Easter Bunny episode) is terrified. The sweat is starting to happen as everyone is staring and ready for their turn in line. Nolan is clinging to Justin for dear life like we're about to put him in scalding water. So Santa says, "Hey there give me a high five." And just like that, Santa and Nolan were BFF (best friends forever). He was sitting on his lap and telling him all about his wish list.


Grandma and Granddad waiting to see Santa

Yes, that is Nolan licking the candy cane. Hey, we were by the gingerbread house...it all looked too yummy to resist!
Here we are by the gingerbread house
Nolan by the decorations with Mrs. Claus and the real live reindeer (we took those pictures last year)
Here we come Santa!

Turkey Day

What a fun Thanksgiving. We ate ourselves silly, saw the fam, watched the cowboys game and the boys seemed to really have a great time. I got a really cute little onesie that said "Gobble til you wobble" for Campbell. Good thing I took pics of him at home because we were only at my parents house for about 30 minutes before a blowout happened. I only had to change his outfit about 3 times that day. I swear I need to bring his closet with me everywhere I go! After lunch, Nolan and his cousins helped rake the leaves at Grandma and Granddad's house. Nolan was quite a helper and it was good for me to see that he's willing to help with yard work! Justin and I joke that we're going to be having our boys mowing the lawn by the time they're 4! All in all, we have so much to be thankful for. First being two beautiful happy healthy boys.
Peek-a-boo
Nolan raking with his cousins Avery, Adalyn, Aspen and Granddad
Not sure who's bigger of the two...

What a big helper
Mommy and her little butterball turkey
Oh my goodness...
Our sweetgum in our backyard just turned this week this beautiful shade of red.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Shopping trip

I realized with Justin gone for the weekend that even though I was with the boys 24/7, I felt like I didn't have any quality time with Nolan. The poor thing heard a lot of "hang on Nolan" or "when I'm done feeding Campbell"...So I took him tonight to Petsmart and Target for some good ol' mommy/Nolie time. It was Nolan's first trip to Petsmart (or that he can remember) and I told him how we were going to see fish, birds, and maybe some dogs and cats. He was really excited and told me that "he couldn't wait to see the hippopotamus." I think he was a little disappointed to find out that all they had were guinea pigs. He was a little freaked out by them for some reason. He told Justin when he was tucking him into bed that he was scared of the "giggy pigs."

So we go to Target and Santa heard that Nolan wants a bike for Christmas so I was trying to do some shopping for Christmas for Santa and find out what size helmet Nolan needed. Since he already wears hats for 5-7 year olds, I thought we better try them on. So I find a helmet and put it on his head and just smiling because he looks so cute in it. I show him a mirror and his response is, "I'm the coolest!" I seriously have no idea where he heard that but I think the whole store heard me laughing.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Toofers


I finally got a photo of Campbell's first teeth coming through. It took about 10 pictures to finally get this one of his teeth showing.

And here are some of our food adventures. Usually they involve bath time immediately afterwards. The bath water color is always an interesting color.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bounce House

Nolan got this bouncer from my cousin for his birthday and it's his new method of transportation around the house. He thinks walking is overrated. It's pretty funny to watch.
video

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Breakfast blunder

Oh have I got a funny story...whoever thought parenting could be so funny? Our Sunday school teacher texted us on Saturday and told us she couldn't make it on Sunday so to sleep in a little. Well Justin had a great idea, why don't we drop the boys off at church and go have some breakfast without bouncing a baby on one of our knees or telling Nolan for the gazillionth time to eat and stop playing. We dropped Nolan in Sunday School and then asked the ladies in the nursery if it was ok. We left Justin's cell phone (I forgot mine at home) and headed off to a kid-free breakfast. I was already dreaming of my french toast. Well the french toast was a little of a bust. One slice was not cooked and rather mushy so I asked for another one. Only 15 minutes later do they present real toast (not french) sprinkled with powdered sugar. It's a little weird to think you're about to eat french toast, drown it in syrup and then hear a "crunch".

So minus the mushy/crunchy french toast, it was wonderful to have an adult conversation. We are pulling into the parking lot and we hear the phone ring...uh oh...DANGER. I know this can't be good. So I have Justin drop me off and I run in. As I run in, I have two people greet me at the door and tell me that "my kid is going crazy." "Which one?" I ask. Campbell...oh boy. As I round the corner, I can hear screaming. I walk in and the two nursery attendents are totally frazzled. Apparently, Campbell had a blowout of epic proportion. I run over to him to see tears streaming down his face in his full blown silent scream that he does. Little do they know, that's all part of his drama game. I swear he will win an Oscar when he grows up. They get him cleaned up but the clothes had to be sacrificed...it was that bad. I immediately picked him up only to discover it in his hair. And, mom of the year over here doesn't have any backup clothes. I dig through the diaper bag to find a onesie hidden in a pocket that the buttons were holding on for dear life it was so tight. Oh and might I mention that it was about 50 degrees outside and the poor guy is dressed like he's going to the beach. At this point, there is only about 15 minutes left of church and I just stay in the nursery to rock him and calm him down. So basically we went to church to change a diaper. Maybe next week, we should have breakfast at home.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Picasso

Ok, I know that I brag a lot about Nolan. I can't help it. He blows me away constantly. It shouldn't shock me that Nolan would be a good artist with the creative genes he has from his daddy. One of our friends got Nolan a little doodle pro and he draws on it all the time. It's been a lifesaver many-a-time at restaurants and doctor's offices. Unfortunately, since you can erase them and can't save any of the images, I have to take pictures of his artwork that I'm especially blown away by. Here are a few that would have made it onto our fridge if we could have.

We present our newest artist at the McDonald Museum of Art...Nolan Case McDonald

Nolan drew this and told me that "he was trick-or-treating"...notice the door with the person to the right holding their bag.

We know Nolan knows his ABCs but this blew us away, he drew it and told us he spelled "Pop" his grandfather's name.

And this has to be the grand prize. He drew this (seriously with no help at all) and said it was a parrot. I can't even draw a parrot this well! He just turned 3!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Still Halloween around here

Halloween is over, right? Well, not according to Nolan. The costume is still pretty much part of our daily routine. I don't mind it too much because he's so darn cute when he wears it around the house. Have you ever seen a cuter cowboy?

Well that's not the end of the cute things he does. I swear having a toddler is as good as having a comedian in the house. He makes me bust out laughing at least once a day. What good medicine. My top 10 list of adorable things Nolan says:

1. "It's froggy (foggy) outside"
2. "Is Campbell eating your arm?" (when I'm nursing Campbell)
3. "Is he eating squish (squash)?"
4. "No mommy you can't eat me, you only eat food." (when I say that they are so cute that I want to eat them.
5. "What's on your face, do you have stripes (wrinkles)?"
6. "I'm not cute, I'm smart!"
7. "I love you 5 million, 2 million and 1 million!"
8. It's a tie between "What are YOUR doing?" and "What DOs this?" (instead of What does this do?)
9. "Dingerbells, dingerbells, dinger all the way"
10. "I had a happy day. I made good choices!"


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

First Foods

I have to admit cereal really isn't that much fun to give to babies. You get excited because you're so tired of always giving bottles or nursing them after months of doing only that around the clock. So we're already introducing the good stuff. Tonight we started with butternut squash. Here's a first look at what Campbell thought of it. He seemed to like it. I especially like Nolan's commentary on the video of how Campbell is eating "squish."
video

Sunday, November 9, 2008

First Tooth!!!

Yes, you read that right...Campbell has his first tooth! I can't believe it myself. He's only 4 months! I wish I could share a picture but everytime I try to take a peek he sticks his tongue out. I just had it set in my mind that he wouldn't get his first tooth until he was 6 months because that's when Nolan got his. Maybe he heard the rumor that second children do things faster. My mom said last weekend that his gums were swollen and I thought they were too but Nolan's gums would be swollen for weeks before a tooth would break through so I just thought that it would at least be another month...wrong! Justin said Campbell was gnawing on his hand and then he felt a little sharp chomp on his knuckle and sure enough...He's been drooling a ton but hasn't really had any other symptoms. He didn't sleep very well for 4 or 5 nights last week but I thought that was because it was so congested. It's scaring me how fast this is going! How can he already have teeth? Hmmm, I'll let you know how long nursing lasts.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Pumpkin carving

I'm a little late on this one but better late than never, right? We carved a pumpkin for Halloween. It was all fun for Nolan until he discovered that the pumpkin turned into a jack-o-lantern and then he was pretty spooked out by it. After telling him only about 10 times that he wasn't real and was fake, he thought it was pretty cool.




Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A new word for wrinkles

The other day I was talking with Nolan and I guess I had one of my expressive faces on. I had my eyebrows raised and a lot of wrinkles popped out on my forehead. Nolan quizzically asks, "What's on your face? Do you have stripes?" I guess that's a lot nicer than saying I have wrinkles.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Country cowboy

My sister and her husband live on 35 acres south of town. We went to go celebrate my nieces' birthdays. We also decorated our Halloween treat bags and had some good ol' fashioned country fun. Justin drove David's tractor with Nolan. It was pretty comical especially after Justin realized that what he thought was the accelerator was really the brake. Nolan loved it and even sported some boots that were way too big for him but he didn't seem to mind. Campbell's cousins just played with him and had him giggling and cooing the whole time.




Sunday, November 2, 2008

Campbell's baby dedication

Today was Campbell's baby dedication at church. He was very cooperative during the service and didn't even pitch a fit when our minister held him. It was so wonderful to have my whole family there to celebrate with us in this special event in his life. My grandparents even made the trip down from Amarillo to see their great-grandson's dedication.



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