Thursday, February 26, 2009

Dentist

So, sick kids, mom's nearly crazy and I have to go to the dentist. I haven't been in 6 years. I used to be a dental junkie and went every 6 months when I had insurance (double insurance we paid for nothing but the coverage. Alvin lost his job, when the company he worked for called it quits and Finn was just 5 days old. For 6 months, my companys FMLA covered our dental and medical insurance, but that ended when I "decided" not to go back). I've been having some tooth pain, and decided it was time to go and hoping at the same time my tooth ache was related to my cold. I scheduled the appointment 2 weeks ago and fretted about going. no, I don't hate the dentist, but I am always afraid of what they might find.

The day arrives and I am nearly excited to go, just to get out of the house without kids. My mom shows up and I am off! Okay, something is wrong. The sign says dental, but I feel like I am walking into spa. There is cultured rock on the walls, plush chairs, a beautiful turkish rug on the floor (anyone going to Turkey soon) and a water fall filling the room with soothing noise (makes me wonder how the receptionist can sit there with out having to pee several times an hour). I was immediately taken back for my xrays, and then had to wait a while...not a problem, because the coffee table was covered in CURRENT magazines. Magazines that people actually read and something for everyone...maybe too many, because I had a hard time picking something out of the 30-40 choices. Couldn't decide between style, travel, home, and ended up picking up family fun (well, you can take me away from the kids, but you can't make me stop thinking about them...really, it was close to the top and I was afraid to upset the pile).

So time comes that I have to get in the chair and they put a pillow under my neck. The offices were bright and clean and staff was friendly. Cleaning went well, I was even told that my teeth weren't all that bad for waiting so long to come in, but they hurt all day yesterday. And I am pleased to report that I had nothing majorly wrong! I should go have a few fillings, because one tooth is broken (can I sue willy wonka...I used to love coke bottlecaps until one broke my tooth 5 years ago) and one tooth has a flaw in the enamel.

I may wait a few months to do that, just so I can save some money, but over all it was a pleasant experience.

Husband Upgrade?

My husband is great, but there is one little teeny tiny thing I would like to change about him. I wish he could clean up vomit. He gets sick when he smells it (and who doesn't) and because of that he can't clean it up. We have had the bug here and all 3 boys have had vomiting and diarrhea for days. Of course, you know that if he would commit to cleaning up vomit from here on out, no one would get sick. He does do the diapers without complaint so I will keep him without any upgrades.

Finn was sick over the weekend and I had a very productive Sunday, doing tons of wash (washed everyone sheets, mattress pads and bathroom rugs), cleaned the kitchen and bathroom (remember we only have one), made waffles for breakfast and made 2 extra batches for the freezer, folded all the laundry and went to bed feeling proud of my clean house.

I thought Finn was finished and I sent him to school on Monday. Quincy had a fever and had just finished throwing up when the school called and asked me to pick up Finn: He threw up on his desk just after school started. I did the walk of shame to the office to pick up my son, who was now wearing unfamiliar clothes, while carrying another sick child and praying Paxton wouldn't start fussing to be carried. We made it home without incident and the day seemed like any normal day. Alvin didn't think I should send Finn to school Tuesday, so we kept him home. Quincy was now sick and crying out, "Mom I need you." When asked why, he said "just because."

Wednesday morning, Quincy woke me up to tell me that Finn was throwing up. Got it all cleaned up, medicated Finn (he's coughing and it might be gagging him) and everyone went back to bed until 7. Alvin had an early morning meeting, Finn was still sleeping and Quincy (really would like to use my favorite word here.Sh..) crapped through his diaper on the couch. HUGE MESS. Bath number one for the day. I went to the dentist.more on that later, came home and the day went smoothly, except for sick kid whining. Just after dinner, came bath 2. Bed time, and 10 minutes later bath 3, more sheets, mattress pads, pillows and bath rugs to be washed.and he had a bucket next to him in bed. He's still whiny now, but no major messes yet.

Now, it's Thursday and you think you know what I am going to say. Nope, Finn is feeling fine and wants to go to school, but awakes to the phone ringing at 6:30am telling us that there no school for Finn because of the snow. It's practically March and you are telling me it's snowed so bad they have to delay school (half day kindergarten is only 2 ½ hours). And on top of all that, the school calls, wakes the entire family up, when it is a perfectly good day to sleep in. Its 11:45, sunny and gorgeous outside, albeit cold, and the snow will all be gone soon. Finn is working in his workbook, so at least I feel like the day isn't turning into another TV day.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Birthday Party Success

During the party, I wondered what I was thinking, but now that it is over, it wasn't too bad. Some moms offered to come help, but I told them they should enjoy an extra 3 hours in their day. One mom told me that she didn't know what to do with herself (I'm looking forward to that day).
I bought a bottle rocket kit online, and we decorated plastic water bottles (came in the kit) and used both water/air and vinegar/baking soda to launch them. The air used a special stopper with a ball needle in it to pump air into the bottles, getting Alvin a little wet. The kit also came with special stoppers that held baking soda and they launched when it hit the vinegar in the bottle.
Alvin then launched estes rockets with the kids in the cow pasture and it was the perfect day for it. We "lost" only one rocket (about 6-7 launches) and it is stuck in the tree right outside our back door--we'll get it back when the wind blows. There was no wind, it was sunny and I think Finn had a great time. Party favors in rockets I made.

Big shout out to the cake decorator in our local Safeway. I just told her that it was a 6 year old birthday and we wanted a rocket on it...This is what we brough home for only $10.

We served chicken nuggets, carrots, apples and grapes. The bowl in front of paxton was piled full of grapes (on sale for 88 cents a pound) and the kids ate just a few of them. Paxton has eaten the entire bowl of grapes. I took them away and when I wasn't looking this morning, he climbed up on the bar and over to the counter and started eating them again...guess we need not worry about scurvy.




Friday, February 20, 2009

Cowlicks and Comments

Quincy woke up like this. Those cowlicks make the back of his hair stand up in a mohawk
And you know that Quincy will probably not be the one that wants to dye his hair black and style it in a mohawk...it will be the other one and he will have to work hard to make it stay up. And you thought I was lying about the cowlicks causing problems during the hair cut.
If you want to leave comments, I have made it so you don't have to be a blogger user (grandma) to do so. But, if you do leave comments, would you please sign them, so we know who you are. I also got rid of that dreadful letter thing, because I hate having to decipher what letters they are. Comments are good things...and Finn loves it when I read him comments that are about him.
(Today is Finns birthday party. I have supplies for 7 kids and invited another kid when one didn't respond. Yeah, they responded last night and now I have to scrounge up another rocket and they will now have to share. Oh well. Pictures tomorrow)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Sick Day(s)

Yeah, you know Life isn't fair, but it is even less fair when you have a twin brother. When you are sick you and you just want mom to hold you all day, she can't do that. Maybe I should look at it the other way...when your twin is sick, mom can't do things with you. Well, Paxton was content to lounge on the changing table today to get away from the chaos surrounding him.

Just as I feel better, the rest of the clan gets sick (except Finn, but I don't think he will admit it because he desperately wants to go to school tomorrow, and Quincy just has a runny nose). After a very long night for me last night, we had a very mellow day today. At 10:30 last night, Paxton woke up crying with diahrrea, once that was cleaned up (bath), the vomit started. Since Alvin wasn't feeling well, I blew up the air mattress on the living room floor and slept with P there. He was restles all night, and we had to do a few diaper changes in the middle of the night.
Q and F woke up thrilled to see the air mattress and then the jumping began. I've been meaning to not let the boys watch tv when they wake up early and since I was awake, we kept the tv off. It was probably a little loud for the downstairs neighbors, but the boys were happy. Alvin stayed home again today, and allowed me to take a nap, or else I would not have survived the day.
Yesterday, we had Jen and her kids over to play and enjoy the sunshine. I made pizza dough and had the kids make their own pizzas for lunch and dessert was cupcakes filled with whipped cream (I figured out how to do it on the first try).This weekend, Alvin, Paxton and Quincy got hair cuts. Quincy came last, and I was feeling confident...oops. That kid has cowlicks and I just kept cutting to get it straight. Hopefully you won't be able to tell in a few weeks.
Lastly, I made dinner in the crock pot tonight...chicken in a soy pineapple garlic sauce. Sauce was good, but chicken was DRY DRY DRY. Why? Anyone know? It only cooked from 2:30 to 6 and breasts were frozen when I put them in. Help. I want to use my crock pot more.

Finn's Birthday

I didn't get a chance to upload photos of Finn's birthday right away, but better late than never.
We went easy on gifts this year and Finn got a few legos (A new favorite), a desk (to build legos on and do homework) and a second hand leap pad.
Grandma sent Finn a new sweat outfit...it's a good thing grandma buys the kids sweats, because I never do and Finn loves them.

I volunteered at Finn's classroom and helped out the substitute teacher...hey, she can use all the help she can get, there are 14 boys in that class. Since they had Friday (and Monday and Tuesday) off, they celebrated valentines with a little party. We brought valentines heart cookies and number 6 cookies for all the kids. It was fun to see Finn interact with his friends and see how they learn...I need to do it more often.

We celebrated at home with a buttermilk vanilla cake with caramel frosting. Don't ask for the recipe. I overcooked the cake and the frosting made the whole thing taste like a maple bar. Finn loved it though.

I can hardly believe that it has been 6 years. Finn is a good kid, smart, cute and fun loving. He was only 6 pounds 6 ounces at birth and for a long time he was small for his age, but he seems to have caught up.

His birthday party is Friday and we are going to launch a bunch of different kinds of rockets with 6 of his friends. I wasn't going to do a party again this year, but since we asked his friends at the last party not to bring gifts, we felt like he needed a little party. Can you please remind me next year that he doesn't need a party.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

It's been quite the valentines day!

It's a good thing we didn't have plans tonight, because they would have been cancelled. Quincy has a cold and his ear has been hurting since last night (that is a nice part of them being able to talk) and Paxton has some stomach problems. We've seen all manner of sickness today, and it doesn't help that Alvin and I aren't feeling too hot either.

I am happy to say, that I feel on the mend. It's been about a week since I felt really good and because of that (and the kids) haven't slept well. Bless Alvin's heart, he let me sleep in the past 2 days and he even slept with Quincy last night.

Enough for now, because all the kids are in bed and it's time to let Alvin know I love him...we'll sit down and watch tv.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Birthday cake




So, I feel like I have spent too much time in the kitchen lately...yesterday it was a loaf of bread, a batch of hotdog buns and 3 batches of sugar cookies (Finn's valentines party at school...and he gets to take birthday cookies) and the day before I baked a loaf of bread and hamburger buns. Today, I started a loaf of bread and packaged all those cookies, and now I have to start baking a birthday cake. All of that is with out mentioning our meals.
I asked Finn what kind of cake he wanted...he could have picked anything and I would have picked something Chocolate. Alvin has Finn brainwashed to think that Vanilla is the best flavor. I think Alvin was talking about vanilla ice cream, but Finn is now insisting on a vanilla cake with vanilla frosting. Come on Kid, vanilla cake with fudge frosing, lemon frosting, caramel frosting....something besides white on white. (Okay, what I am really thinking is I could buy something that boring at safeway. I am going to try manipulation...I think vanilla caramel frosting sounds like something he'll jump at.

Notice the snow in the background...yep, it snowed yesterday. It was gone by this afternoon!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

It's the MOST WONDERFUL time of the year!

I just had my first one of these for the year and I had to share them with you. (I think last year I had Cherry, but these are definately better). I keep them in our deep freezer and eat them frozen, and you can't keep them in your hand long, or else they thaw and just a bit changes the texture. I eat them like truffles...like they are something special. (I am going to buy extra while I can get them)


The rest of the year I freeze these...delicious, but not the same.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Happiness is Homemade bread.

Okay, I know you are thinking that I have a bread obsession (especially if you are a facebook friend) and I think you might be right. I wasn't going to post anything today, because I am tired and have little to say, but then I saw Katie posted about MY bread recipe. You don't know how happy it made me to see that someone else like it.

Strangely enough, my mom asked me to bake her a loaf of cinnamon swirl bread to take with her on her girls weekend away tomorrow...this is to me like Sally Field winning the oscar...so stunned you can only think...wow, they really, really like it! And today, I needed to feel a little of that.

Heres another bread recipe...super easy and cheap and delish. I will take pictures of the tools I think it helps to have later (must start dinner). Compliments of my brother in law.


Jason’s NY Times (Mark Bittman’s) No-Knead Bread
(The Minimalist bread: Time does the work. Crusty bread that we like warm at dinner with a side of butter and honey)
Time: About 1/1/2 hrs plus 14 to 20 hours’ rising

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ tsp instant yeast (or 1/4 cup sourdough starter, mix with water before adding this to flour)
1 ¼ tsp salt
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed.

In a large bowl combine flour, yeast, and salt. Add 1 5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hrs, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.
Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 min.
Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hrs. When it’s ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8- quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, pyrex, or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is ok. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 min, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 min, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

STOP the WHINING!

There is a lot of whining going on at my house, and here I am whining...lets call it peer pressure.

I recognize that whining is part of 2 year old development, but what about the 6 year old. I don't know how much more of it I can take. It's often 2 at a time and so loud. What's a mom to do? How do you curb this?

Okay, so what about back talk? That is a problem too...and he is teaching the younger boys. He's on his way to bed right now, early as a result of the back talk today.

On a happy note, I cooked purple cauliflower with dinner tonight and all the kids ate it...I would have thought the "unnatural" color would have turned them off.