Friday, March 21, 2014

Spring break fun (part 3)

Jeff got a new truck and Jacob and Ryan have been tortured with appointments, not to mention a trip to the DMV to get the tag transferred over.  Side note - if you live in Shelby County and you need to do something at the DMV, go to the Inverness location!!!  They are NEVER busy.  We walked in and were second in line and were back in our cars in less than 25 minutes.  The line for renewing your driver's license was longer than the tag line.  What kind of parent am I?  Lamest spring break ever (sorry, wrong again, that would last year when Jacob came to work with me every day).  Well, I did plan something fun for the boys.

Jacob is obsessed with Legos.  That's all the boy wants to Legos, build Legos, buy Legos...Legos, Legos, Legos!  Ryan just wants to steal Jacob's Lego people.  After going to see the Lego Movie, I told Jacob that we were going to the LegoLand Discovery Center in Atlanta!  For over a month, that's all he has been able to talk about.  Since Jeff had to work, a friend went with us.  We drove over Wednesday morning and spent the afternoon at LegoLand (located in Phipps Plaza).  The boys thoroughly enjoyed themselves.  We got to ride a ride, build Lego race cars, attend a Master Builder class where we learned about the S.N.O.T (stud not on top) technique, watch a Lego movie (not the Lego Movie), ride another rise, play in a jungle gym thing and just run around and act crazy.  When we were ready to leave, we went to the Lego store.  Jacob has been saving his money and was able to get several Lego sets.  Ryan got some Lego people and a small set that is a monkey, dog and bear.  I know, everyone is shocked that my animal loving three year old picked an animal Lego set.  Jacob couldn't wait to get to the hotel and start building.

After checking into the DoubleTree (hello, amazing cookies!!) and building Legos, we walked up the street to Maggiano's for dinner.  I LOVE Maggiano's.  It could be my favorite place to eat.  They just get it.  The atmosphere is lovely, the food is tasty and it's just a nice, warm, cozy feeling.  Our dinner was excellent.  We went back to the hotel and crashed.

After breakfast, we checked out and went over to Lenox to walk around.  We didn't stay there very long before we decided to head over to Atlantic Station.  We roamed around there for a little while and then went to IKEA (fun for Mommy!).  We shopped and had lunch at IKEA and then headed home. 

I was supposed to leave with tennis on Friday but one of the matches was canceled due to the weather forecast for Sunday.  The Saturday match was now just a day trip so I was able to stay home!

I cleaned the house and Popi and Mimi came over for the weekend.  Since I was originally going to be gone, they came over to help with the boys since it was Jacob's first soccer game on Saturday (that he didn't get to go to since he's been on house arrest due to allergies) and soccer pictures on Sunday.  Since Jacob didn't get to go to his first game, Mimi and I took the boys to lunch and to see Mr. Peabody and Sherman.  I thought it was funny...lots of puns.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Spring break lack thereof (part 2)

Now on to the fun part of spring break...

Monday morning before all the appointments, we bought a truck!!!!  The 4-Runner was getting on up there in age and mileage.  At the most recent service appointment, there were a lot of things that needed to be done to it...costing almost as much as it was currently valued.  We have known for a while that it wouldn't make it much longer so it wasn't really a shock.  We opted to do only what was necessary (oil change, new filters, front brakes and roaters) and skip what wasn't (shocks, struts and a timing belt).  This kicked our new vehicle search into high gear.

Jeff has been looking at trucks for at least a year and a half.  Since he drove the 4-Runner, the new vehicle would be his primary mode of transportation.  He wanted a 4 wheel drive truck and he wanted one bad! 

He took the 4-Runner by Carmax one evening after work (it's easy to do those types of things when you work in Hoover) and they said they would give us more than we thought!  Awesome!!!  Since he was already over on 150 he decided to go by Long Lewis (the F150 was a top contender) and see what they would give us for a trade.  It was better than Carmax because they have some rebate program that they can add on to a trade-in.  He found a truck that night but I couldn't get up there to see it so he waited.  I left with tennis that Friday - Sunday. 

On Saturday, he went down to McKinnon in Clanton to check out Tundras.  I had purchased my 4-Runner from them back in 2001 and we knew the Toyota would be reliable.  He found a Tundra that he really liked but it was more expensive and it was black.  The ONE thing I didn't want was a black vehicle.  My Dad had a black pick-up truck growing up and I remember how frustrated he would be because it showed every little scratch.  Two strikes...more expensive and wrong color.  The third strike was the financing...their rate was almost double what Long Lewis was willing to do.  Oh, I completely forgot that they were only willing to give us half of what Carmax would do on the trade-in.  Yeah, right!  Get a life, McKinnon!

Jeff went back to Long Lewis, who was "holding" the truck from Thursday.  He was able to test drive it and loved it.  They even lowered the interest rate almost half a point.  To recap:  not black, less expensive, more trade-in value and lower interest rate.  Win-win!  They wanted Jeff to go ahead and take the truck on Saturday, but I still hadn't seen it or driven it.  So, Monday morning, we were at the dealership at 8:00.  I test drove it and man, was it nice!  Quiet and smooth - the power of a V8 but the gas mileage of a V6.  I approved!  Two hours later we left with the truck.

I'm so happy for Jeff!  He works so hard to provide for our family.  I'm glad he was able to get something nice for himself.  He's like a proud papa!!

"In the long run, it's Long Lewis, ya' hear!"

(not our truck but what it looks like - I still need to upload pictures)

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spring Break fun...or lack thereof (part 1)

The week of the 10th was spring break at Jacob's school.  I took off work to keep the boys.  I hardly ever take off work for a couple of reasons:
1) the University has great holidays so I can be off without using vacation time - SCORE!
2) my work doesn't stop when I'm not there

I used the vacation time to schedule different appointments for the boys...a much needed "dentalist" appointment for cleanings and an appointment with a pediatric allergist that our pediatrician recommended. 

I wasn't sure how the "dentalist" was going to go since Ryan's first and only appointment last year wasn't so great.  In fact, he wouldn't open his mouth for the dental hygienist to do anything.  If I remember correctly, I had to hold him down in my lap for them to even look at his teeth at the end.  Forget the cleaning, there's no way that was happening. 

They called both boys back and I waited to be summoned but no one came to the door and called for me.  When both boys were finished, they did call for me and I was told that they each did great!  Ryan actually let them clean his teeth and do x-rays.  Neither boy had cavities! 

After the "dentalist" we came home to each lunch and get ready for the allergy doctor.  Since this is a new doctor and it's been about two years since Jacob was tested, we knew they were going to do testing.  Not exactly the best way to start off spring break and having been through it twice, I enlisted the help of Daddy.  Allergy testing is terrible!!!  Especially when you aren't prepared or know what's going on (our first experience).  In order to be tested, he could not have any type of antihistamine five days prior to the visit.  In the five days prior, we had visited my parent's once (to celebrate my Dad's birthday) and they have a dog; he has pet allergies.  During the weekend prior to the appointment, he spent a lot of time outside on Saturday (he's very allergic to grasses and also allergic to trees).  Who didn't?  It was a gorgeous weekend!  He also spent some time outside on Sunday.  When I got home from my trip with the tennis team on Sunday evening, he was running a fever and wheezing really bad. 

We get to the appointment 20 minutes early and then we waited at least 30 minutes past our scheduled appointment time before we were called back.  The nurse got some information from us and the reason we were there.  You could easily hear his wheezing.  She did a breathing test on him and he did miserable.  Because of those results, they decided to give him a breathing treatment.  The breathing treatment lasted about 6 minutes and then we had to wait another 10 minutes or more before she could re-do the test.  He did better with the second breathing test but was still having trouble.  We met with the allergist and she was hesitant to do the testing because he was having such a difficult time breathing.  She decided to give him another breathing treatment to see if it would get him somewhat under control so that he could be tested.  No such luck.  He was still wheezing after the second treatment. 

She decided to try and get it under control with medicine and his inhalers and we would try again.  Poor kid...he's taking an oral steroid in the morning for 8 days, his nasal spray, his regular inhaler and his rescue inhaler (until the wheezing stops) and then at night we substitute the steroid  with Singulair.  We learned so much at this appointment.  For example, we weren't cleaning his chamber correctly, which in turn changed the static charge, making the medicine stick to the sides of the chamber instead of being delivered to him.  His rescue inhaler probably didn't have any medicine in it and what I thought was medicine was just the propellent.  He should be using his regular inhaler every day, even if he's not having symptoms.  You would think over the past 4 years someone would have told us some of this! 

We paid a lot of money for an ENT to treat his allergies with injections and no one ever told us any of the things we learned at this one appointment.  It really makes me mad to think about it.  Why didn't they tell us to use his regular inhaler everyday?  All they did was make sure we had a rescue inhaler and an epi-pen.  And, when we quit going, cold turkey, they never once called to check on Jacob or find out why he hasn't been in the office. 

After being at their office for over four hours, we left with several samples, four prescriptions and an appointment for testing.  I'm happy to report that he's not wheezing so something is working! 

Friday, March 7, 2014

Watch out for the "Cryptsteeburg!"

Our New Year's Eve tradition (the past few years, at least) has been:
  • make home-made pizzas
  • have a dance party in the kitchen/living room 
  • watch a movie
  • try to stay awake for the ball drop
Ringing in 2014, we made pizzas, had a dance party, watched an awesome firework show at the end of our street, watched a movie and stayed up until after midnight (thanks to fireworks and two scaredy cat little boys).  Last New Year's Eve (ringing in 2013), we introduced Jacob to the wonderful wizarding world of Harry Potter by watching "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone."  Since, in my opinion, the HP movies get a little scarier with each movie, we decided to go a different route this year and watched "Freaky Friday" with Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan (before she went crazy).  It's one of my favorite movies and is always good for a laugh.  I didn't know how the boys would react since it wasn't animated, but they both liked it.  In fact, they've even asked to watch it again and again.  

Sometime in January, Ryan came into our room during the night and climbed in bed with us.  Generally, when he does this, he likes to talk, talk, talk.  You can't get the kid to be quiet.  Here I am, trying to go back to sleep and Ryan's all talky-spice.  I roll over with my back to him, the only thing that helps with his constant chatter and he says to me, "What's wrong with you, punk?"  I said, "Excuse me?!?" and he repeated himself, "What's wrong with you, punk?"  Since punk is not in our vernacular, I was very confused.  He has no idea what punk meant.  I didn't think he was being disrespectful, so I eventually laughed and finally went back to sleep.  I told Jeff about the incident the next morning and he literally spat his drink of water out in the kitchen.  We talked about where he would have heard punk and came up with "Freaky Friday."  At some point in the movie, Anna, who is in her mother's body, says to Harry (her brother, who thinks he's talking to his mother), "What are you looking at, punk?"  

Weeks later, Jacob starts talking about the movie one day in the car.  We were on the way to pick Ryan up from preschool and he said, "Mom, you remember in Freaky Friday when the girl says, 'I'm old!  I'm like the cryptsteeburg!'?"  I died laughing.  The crypt-stee-burg, a.k.a. the crypt keeper.  

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Jake's dream house

Often, when we visit Popi and Mimi in Georgia, we drive by this house:

The first time we saw it, Jacob told us he was going to live there when he grew up (and we could come too).  This week, Jeff came home from work and told Jacob he had good news and bad news for him and that I should come hear it too.  I thought, "Oh, boy...what's going on?"  His good news was that Jacob's dream house was for sale!  His bad news was the price tag...$15 MILLION.  Ouch!  We then took a "virtual" tour of the house and it's incredible.  During the tour, we saw it had an outdoor basketball court.  Jacob announced that Ryan could come live with us too.  Isn't that nice of him?  At the end of the tour, Jeff pulled up a mortgage calculator - just for fun.  If we didn't put a cent down and had a modest interest rate close to our current mortgage, our monthly payment would be over $66,000/month!  That's INSANE!  Jacob thought for a minute and said, "well, I guess I don't really need any new Lego's when we go to LEGOLAND Discovery Center for spring break.  I'll just save my money."  I think my heart melted right there.  Bless him! 

Thank you Lord for allowing me to be Jacob's mother and for his sweet spirit.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

"Well, I guess this has been the worst morning of my life"

It's a hard job being seven, but someone's got to do it! This quote is what Jacob told his RoRo the other morning when she came by to take him to school. You can imagine her shock, when she innocently asked, "How are you? How's your morning going?" Little did she know that major surgery had occurred just minutes before she arrived at our house. And, by "major surgery," I removed a splinter out of the bottom of Jacob's foot. He had gotten a bath before school and when he was getting dressed, he said, "Momma, I think I'm going to be walking funny today because my foot hurts, or I've got a splinter...wait, let me check. Yep, I've got a splinter." I examined the bottom of his foot and sure enough, he did have a splinter. It was red around it and had to come out. Here's where the blood curdling screams came in. I'm surprised our neighbors didn't alert the authorities to the abuse/murder that was taking place. Poor Ryan was trying his best to be helpful and even let Jacob hold his, "Frosty of the Reindeer" (you're confused, I it a snowman or a reindeer? Rest at ease, my friend, it's a reindeer) until the screaming got too bad and then he waved his hands in a "come here" motion and announced, "OK, give it back, give it back." He was my little helper and held the flashlight so I could see better...until he started moving it around and shaking it back and forth. When I asked him to please hold it still, he said, "but, Mom, my hand's shaking." Bless it! After about 15 minutes and countless screams and tears, the splinter was extracted. Jacob limped around the rest of the time he was getting dressed - until he forgot that his foot was supposed to be "hurt" and I caught him walking normal. Don't think I didn't point out that he was just fine.

Jacob slipped out the door while Ryan was going potty. We continued to get ready and Ryan didn't notice his brother's absence until we were in the garage to leave. "Where's Jacob?" Uh oh...busted! I did what any parent would do to avoid a complete meltdown...avoid answering the question! "Um, I guess we lost him?" Clever, right? Good thing Ryan's only three and doesn't see through my poorly thought of farce. "Oh, ok." Whew!!! Close one!

I take Ryan to school, all the way rocking out to some Veggie Tales. I get to work and my Mom calls me. I ask, "How'd it go?" (this is the first time we've attempted this school drop off). She replies, "Oh, good, he was very talkative, wanted me to come in to see his classroom." Blah, blah, blah...then she tells me he told her in the car, "Well, I guess this has been the worst morning of my life!" "Why?" she asks? "Because of the splinter, Ro!"

I laughed so hard that I literally could not breathe! My little drama king!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Guess who's back?!?

I have decided to revive my forgotten blog. It wasn't really forgotten...I've just had a bajillion other things to do besides blog. After scrolling through some blog posts, I'm sad that I've missed over 2 years of what's been going on in our lives. Here's to doing a better job!