Welcome to a piece of our sweet journey of life. This blog is about our family life-- my husband, my type 1 diabetic kindergartner, my spunky pre-schooler, my toddler baby girl, and myself! Enjoy!

Friday, July 12, 2019

Sayings of My Children

The boys & I read back through little snippets of conversations I've written down over the years and it was so funny to see their expressions as we talked about what they said as toddlers and preschoolers.  I've still kept record of funny quips they make and here's the latest edition.

For reference, Michael is 6 (nearly 7) and Noah is 5.

Noah: (singing) I'm so skinny! You can see my skin!

Michael: Mario has a hundred and one. Luigi has a hundred and one too. Not a hundred and twelve.
Noah: we know that. Everyone knows that.

When Noah talks about kickstands, etc, he says "stable riders" instead of stabilizers. It's so cute and I'll miss this when he pronounces this correctly.

Watching a show about a rhino who needs glasses and Gideon (my 6 y.o.nephew) tells me that this rhino is "ear sighted, which means he can't see."

Noah: (came in from playing outside) mom, do you have a metal detector? Michael can't find his dime.

Noah: I want to watch them go through the cold-desac. But is it actually cold there?

Noah: (playing with a cowboy outfit) I had to get a bear.
Me: (gasp) what kind?
Noah: a grizzle bear

(On May 4th)
Michael: Happy graduation day, Mom!
Noah: Happy Easter, Mom!

Noah: Akuna is wet
Me: Akuna, how did you get wet?
Noah: He doesn't know; he can't talk!

Noah: (pretending to be a dump truck by laying on the floor and pressing the couch cushions up with his feet-- he accidentally toots while doing this)
Me: Uh-oh. Sounds like you have engine trouble.
Noah: No, that was just my Jake-brake

Noah: is Mickey Mouse real?
Me: he's just a character.
Noah: well, I think he IS real because he's in the movies. Does he live in Disney World?
Me: yes. I think in the castle.
Noah: I think he lives in the clubhouse because he's in the clubhouse in the movies. Does he have a garage?
Me: I think so.
Noah: he does. It's in the boot of the clubhouse. It's called a boot garage.

Michael: dad, name 5 Italian foods
Aaron: pizza, spaghetti, linguine, rigatoni, ice cream
Michael: you lose. I said Italian!
Me: those are Italian
Michael: ice cream & pizza are not Italian!

Michael: my favorite color is red.
Noah: I like red, white, AND blue
Michael: oh, you will LOVE the American flag

(I told Noah he could have cheez-its after breakfast.)
Noah: remember about my cheez-it cheez-its?
Me: yep. Do you remember?
Noah: nope.

Avery: (puts toy vacuum partially under yoga mat, then runs through the room and trips on it)
Me: Noah, could you pick up the vacuum under the yoga mat?
Noah: Yeah. Why is it called a yogurt mat?

Noah: (shows me his paper plate butterfly he made in Vacation Bible School crafts) I made this today in Craps class

Noah: what do you call a horse that drinks from a swimming pool?
Me: I'm not sure
Noah: a drinking swimming pool horse

Noah: (as I pour orange juice) Orange! That's actually juices squirted from an orange. I wonder if that's why they call it orange juice.

Noah: (pretending to be a dog) what if I scratch off all this stuff covering my bones?
Michael: you mean skin?

Note: When Noah says "L" words, it sounds exactly like how his "W" sounds. I'm typing this how it sounded in conversation.
Noah: mom, how do you spell wait?
Me: wait or late?
Noah: wait
Me: w-a-i-t
Noah: oh, I thought it had an "L"

(Michael was up late watching "Forged in Fire: Knife or Death" with Aaron and myself, and the competitor did something so fast)
Me: oh my gosh!
TV host: oh my G**!
Michael: (gasps) that should say "oh my boop!"

Noah: I love you so much that I'm going to hug you everyday and every mother's day

Michael: we're playing "family." I'm the dad & avery's the mom.
Noah: I'm the grandpa and you can have whatever chocolate bar you like.
Michael: what kind of grandpa is that?
Noah: a working grandpa.

Me: tomorrow we have a birthday party to go to at 4 o'clock.
Noah: is it America's?

Michael: akuna (our dog), you stink. Take a bath.
Noah: cake a bath! You know? Because we're having cake at the party later?
Michael: (laughs) oh yeah, that's funny! Cake a bath.
Noah: (proceeds to repeat his joke about 6 more times, looking at Michael to see if the laugh will continue to be reciprocated).

Noah: (still not able to say the "L" and "R" sounds) Have you seen the white ball?
Me: White ball? No.
Noah: Not white ball! White ball!
Me: (remembering the red & blue markers Noah stuck together to make a police car) You mean light bar?
Noah: Yes, I just can't say those words so I can just say white ball. 

(Noah sits in the way back of our van and he likes to make up songs as we drive.  Here is what I heard to and from church this past Sunday:)
Noah:  (on the way to church) we love Jesus even though He is invisible!
(on the way home) Michael, Michael! You love me and I love you!

Oh, it's so fun to read through what they've said.  These are memories being made and they're good reminders about what precious gifts our children are.

Until Next Time,
Much Love, Reba

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Brushing Teeth

Avery has recently discovered the joy of brushing her teeth. Now we can hardly walk past the hall bathroom without her saying "teeth, teeth."  So we oblige and enter the bathroom. 

She climbs up the step stool, I hand her her My Little Pony training toothbrush & she brushes her teeth! I don't put her training toothpaste on the brush every time-- sometimes I just get the brush a little wet from the sink and hand it to her. She doesn't care at the moment.

As I hand her the toothbrush, I'll say "here you go" and she responds by handing me the soap dispenser and saying "go."

I'll let her brush for a minute or so. While she's brushing her teeth, I'll comb her hair.

If I lean in toward the mirror to look at my eyes or hair, etc. then Avery will also lean in toward the mirror. :)

When her minute isup, I'll hold out my hand wide and I'll count down from five and then point at her toothbrush. I take it, rinse it, and put it away and Avery proceeds to fake cry for 1.3 seconds until we leave the bathroom and then she's fine!

Until Next Time,
Much Love, Reba

Friday, July 5, 2019

Family Ice Cream Outing

Last week, we went to a local ice cream stand with my parents.  This is almost like a three-tiered park in a way.  The upper level is a playground and lighthouse fountain that the kids always throw a penny in (and Michael's wish is always that Pokemon were real), the mid-level is a farmer's market, restaurant, and ice cream stand with covered porches and rocking chairs, and the lowest level is a park with walking paths and a man-made small pond and some porch swings.  Here's some photos from our trip after dinner one night last week!

We tried out pig tails on Avery before we left.  They didn't last the 20 minute drive.

There was a big sand pile at the playground and of course all three kids thought it was the best thing ever.  Avery kept sliding down it an inch at a time saying "wheee!" Michael is the ever present encourager of other people doing hard things-- like small Avery climbing the pile.  You can catch a bit of Noah's facial expression as he jumps (another Noah behavioral-constant) and shouts in glee.

When I went down below with Avery, Aaron, and Michael after ice-cream, my parents sat in rocking chairs and watched Noah play on the vintage tractor that's cemented in front of the ice-cream stand.

Avery will get herself into all sorts of dangerous positions like crawling under moving swings.  She's certainly not shy about potential hazards.

Until Next Time,
Much Love, Reba

Friday, June 28, 2019

Letting It Go

As I'm home with my kids this summer, I'm trying to be more focused on being intentional with my time when I'm with them and also furthering and encouraging imaginative play.  Sometimes this means letting them make harmless messes and waiting til they're really done playing before I jump in to tidy up.  This is really a lesson in letting go for me because my tendency is to immediately want to clean it all up.  But it's actually somewhat freeing when I leave the mess alone until they're really finished.

Here's some picture proof of what they've been up to.

They were making soup with "zests and seasonings."  Once Avery saw her brothers mixing and stirring, she was quick to join in the fun.

On this night, I needed to tend to the oven and stovetop quite heavily while making dinner, so I set Avery up in her booster seat with a yogurt and some shredded cheese so that she'd be happy & content as I did what I needed to do. I forgot that Noah had placed an entire deck of Go Fish cards on the table, and I also wasn't factoring in Avery's ever-growing reach. She got ahold of the cards and thoroughly enjoyed herself as she tossed them all around her chair. I chose to just go with the flow & let her fling cards since she wasn't harming anything and it was keeping her entertained while I needed her to be.

I'm more so writing this post so I can refer back to it at a future date when I might need a reminder to relinquish control. :)

Until Next Time,
Much Love, Reba

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Summer Photo Collection Part 1

I've been more intentional about taking pictures of the kids each day as we do our summer activities (which somedays means just relaxing at home). Granted these pictures have all been taken on my phone thus far, but I do plan to spend some time this summer getting better with my big camera. 

Here's what we've been up to lately:

I bought Avery some Color Wonder markers & coloring sheets so she could have something to color with that wasn't detrimental to my walls. :) She loves it! She will "ker" (her word for either 'color's or 'marker') everyday at least once.

This is how she chose to shop at Costco one afternoon.

The boys & I went to see Pokemon: Detective Pikachu on a Tuesday when tickets were $5.

Noah was not excited about getting his picture made with his VBS giraffe.

Michael & I were seeing how alike our smiles were.

It was a lazy resting afternoon.

We've played lots of board games.  A favorite is Guess Who.

I'm wondering if her school pictures will showcase this same smile one day!

Michael has spent some time drawing comics.

Noah & Avery were admiring his favorite book from the library.

She might have a paci problem.

We transitioned her to a booster seat on Father's Day weekend.

All three kids quietly watching a movie.

She ADORES Akuna! The feeling is mutual.

I hope you've enjoyed this peek into our summer so far!

Until Next Time,
Much love, Reba

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Noah's Allergist Appointment

Last week on Tuesday, I took Noah to the allergist clinic for a follow-up appointment.  Since Noah will be starting kindergarten this fall, I had to have a doctor's note stating what he was actually allergic to, and I had to get a medical form indicating that the nurses would have to administer Noah's epi-pen to him if needed (rather than Noah administering it to himself).

The appointment went really well!  It was a dreary, rainy day, so the drive into the city was not fun.  We arrived pretty close to our actual appointment time and we were called back to a room before I even finished filling out the paperwork updates.  Since this was just a follow-up visit because it had been a year since the previous visit, Noah didn't have to have an additional prick test or bloodwork.

The doctor was amazed at how well Noah looked and considered us the poster-family for allergy management.  I'm not sure why this is not more common and why he was surprised that we have not had to use the epi-pen, etc.  I told him that I don't expose Noah to the foods I know he's allergic to and that I avoid the unprocessed foods that he tested positive for on the prick test last year.  So basically, we avoid all cashews and almonds like the plague and Noah completely understands not to go near them or eat them.  Fortunately, he doesn't like the taste of these tree nuts, so we haven't had any issues.  But all family members have chosen not to keep cashews and almonds in their houses, which is a comfort for me.  We have chosen to avoid pecans, walnuts, and hazelnuts also since these are tree nuts and we're not positive if Noah is only allergic to cashews and almonds (which is confirmed) or if he's allergic to all tree nuts.  We do not consider coconuts a tree nut because we did research and discovered that biologically, it is a fruit although we call it a tree nut in the U.S. because it grows on trees.  Noah had not shown a reaction to coconut prior to last year's visit, so that's what prompted our research and we cautiously let him try coconut and he exhibited no signs of allergic reaction.  We have avoided all mangoes and cosmetic items with mango butter in them since mangoes are part of the cashew family.

Noah is also allergic to soy, though not heavily.  However, we notice that he gets a rash on his neck if he eats many things with soy in a day, like Ritz crackers followed by Slim Jims.  So we tell him he can have one of those snacks in a day, but not both.  We also avoid shampoos and lotions with soy in them.  Prior to his diagnosis of these allergies last year, we had been using this Aveeno body wash and shampoo since the Johnson & Johnson baby products have soy in them.  He had done well with the Aveeno, but I didn't like the smell of it.  I kept using it on him however, until very recently when I read another blogger's description of Everyone Soap.  It has no artificial fragrances and no soy products or mango butter.  I tried out the Lemon + Coconut blend first, but Noah hated the smell since he associates the smell of Lemon with throwing up (he got sick from lemon bars last summer).  So I ordered the Citrus + Mint blend for him and it's great!  Both boys use this blend in their showers and Avery uses the Lemon one in her baths.  It's a body wash, bubble bath, and shampoo, which lets me feel safe using it on them for those times when they really just want a bubble bath.  I don't have to worry about getting out another bathroom product and researching ingredients to make sure it's safe for Noah.  It's also nice that it comes in a pump format, so they're able to easily get a pump to wash themselves and I use a pump on their hair.  This helps us keep from going through it so fast and fumbling with soapy bottles while bathing.

Noah tested positive to peanuts and eggs last year, but the doctor told us that the allergy decreases the further the product is removed from it's raw state.  I was shocked at the peanut diagnosis since Noah eats peanut butter and jelly sandwiches as well as scrambled eggs with no reaction.  The doctor told me last year that if we haven't previously noted a reaction, then he's fine to continue with those products and just to avoid eating raw peanuts or raw eggs.  Fortunately, Noah doesn't like raw peanuts, but we've been careful not to have those in the house as well.  As for eggs, Noah can still eat scrambled eggs and also has no reaction when we use eggs in brownies or cookies, etc.  But I do not give him licks of batter or dough, which is just as well anyway.

Overall, the appointment went really well.  I have my two required papers showing Noah's diagnosis and that he will need a nurse to administer the epi-pen (which hopefully we never have to use!).  The nurses at school are top notch and I feel safe sending him there under their care.  Before leaving the allergy clinic, we scheduled an appointment for next year (it's so nice to be able to know I'll be off in the summer!) and he might have another prick test or blood work at that appointment to find out if any of his allergy levels have decreased or disappeared.

Until Next Time,
Much love, Reba

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Father's Day Weekend

Our Father's Day weekend technically started on Thursday night when Aaron and I were able to go on a dinner date, after which we shopped for Father's Day gifts.  Why does this holiday always sneak up on me?!?  We rounded up gifts for my dad and for Aaron's stepdad that night while shopping.  On Saturday morning, Aaron went to the local shotgun range with a friend and picked up a gift card from the shotgun club store for his dad since they like to go there together sometimes.

While Aaron was at the shotgun club, the kids and I managed to grocery shop.  This is a feat with three little ones!

That evening, we went to Aaron's mom's house to swim in the pool.  We gave Aaron's stepdad his gift-- two kid-sized baseball gloves and the promise from our boys that they were ready to learn to play baseball. This is something my father-in-law has wanted to do with the boys since the first time he found out he'd have a grandson.

We swam in the pool for a while, then played board games inside after it was dark.

The following morning at church, Aaron and I had Children's Church duty.  We finished up a crafts project the kids had started the previous week.  Our associate pastor's wife came up with the idea and started it the week prior to Father's Day to ensure the craft would be finished in time.  The kids glued rocks onto a wooden picture frame, then cut out a tag that said "My Dad Rocks" to glue onto the frame.  Our associate pastor photographed the kids the previous week and had the pictures ready to put in the frames while I was in Children's Church.  The crafts turned out so cute!  Aaron put the ones from Michael and Noah on his bookshelf.

While we were at church, we gave my dad his gift-- a bag full of differing fishing lures and fishing worms since my dad has a bass boat and is spending quite a bit of time on the water when he can.

Aaron also gave his dad his shotgun club gift card so that they could make arrangements to have a father-son day sometime soon.

After church, we swung through the Zaxby's drive through since it was Aaron's lunch choice.  We had a very nice family lunch sitting around our dining table eating our take-out food.  Avery even did well actually chewing her food, so that was a plus. :)

That afternoon, Aaron watched a Formula One Race while the rest of us napped.  Afterwards, Aaron grilled steak for dinner and paired it with pan-cooked mushrooms and onions.

Overall it was a really great, relaxing day!