Monday, May 31, 2010

Weekend Update: With Wall-E

That's right. You're looking at one cute tush. One cute potty trained tush. One cute magically self potty trained tush. I'm not sure how we lucked on this one, but Brody miraculously potty trained himself overnight. We didn't want to push it and waited until he was ready and boy did it pay off. He does need to be taken to the potty or reminded, but he's only had a few accidents and has made it through car rides, stores and playdates without an accident. I didn't want to buy pull-ups because I think it's really just a big boy diaper and a waste of money, so I let him wear big boy pants and let him feel what it was like to wear underwear when they have been peed in. Needless to say he didn't like it. Starbursts were the bribe of choice, which were much cheaper than Thomas the Train with Baylor!
I was dreading potty training, but am pleased to announce that there will be no more diaper buying in this house! Now bedtimes are a different story, but we can handle one pull-up for each boy at night....at least for a little bit! Way to go Brody Man, we are so proud of you!

Another HUGE deal in our house is that my student loan is PAID OFF!! Wahoo! Unfortunately, we did receive a rather enormous medical bill right after paying off the student loan, but it's still an accomplishment! I do have to appreciate the music/academic scholarship along with a little help from my parents or I would be paying off student loans until I was 50. Thanks Mom and Dad, I hope we can help the boys a little with their schooling some day.

It's been a great weekend home with my family and friends. Lonnie is officially done with track for the season and minus a few recruiting trips and meetings, his travel is less and weekends are free! This means full training for my two triathlons that I have signed up for! (yes, two.....Camp Courageous in August and the Trihawk in September) I'm super excited and have a few friends who will be my training/advice gurus.

Hope you all had a marvelous weekend!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Baylor's Un-Birthday

Today was Baylor's Un-Birthday at preschool. What is an un-birthday you ask? Precisely that, a non birthday birthday. Got it? Since Baylor's birthday isn't until August 31st, he was allowed to celebrate his un-birthday with his preschool friends today. He was thrilled. I can't believe that in a few months, my baby boy will be one whole hand!!!
....and this cheese ball will be three!

I just got Baylor's, "official" AK papers in the mail today, which made him being in school five days a week, a reality. He will go five days a week (eeek!) in the afternoon from 12:15-3:14. Being a teacher, I do have faith in our public schools (sometimes!) and our decision to send him to AK has given both Lonnie and I both peace. Sure, he's going to learn new and inappropriate words (among other things) but where else can he learn to be a light for Christ in the darkness? It takes strong parenting and biblical support to raise children in public schools and even in Christian schools, and we feel that God is leading us in this way. Baylor is a very strong willed intelligent dude that thrives to be a people pleaser but has a sweet heart. Our role in his education doesn't stop when he walks out the door to go to school. We hope to be even more involved and active with his teachers and other families in the school district. We know many of the teachers and have the utmost respect and have only heard good things from other parents. We are sad that he is no longer in preschool (thank you preschool teachers! You are the best!!) but are looking forward to sending Brody in the near future....trust me....really soon...the sooner the better. He's already in love with one of the preschool teachers, so we're all good.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Baby, it's hot outside

Okay, first let me explain why there is a icky green couch and air mattress in my living room.
1. Lonnie Snores like a frieght train.....A FREIGHT TRAIN!!! 2. Air mattresses make awesome trampolines
It was awful hot today. We spent most of the day outside of course....in the hose and water.
See exhibit A. This is after I had to pull his pants up. It's going to be a long summer trying to keep clothes on the boys.

Last week I had to turn the heat on because it was 35 at night. This week it's 96 and humid. I love Iowa. I'm so thankful for window air conditioners (we don't have central air, be thankful if you do!) popcicles and hoses.


Friday, May 21, 2010

The curse of the pee pee (vol.3)

I am certain that I will never full understand the complexity of the male mind when it comes to ownership of his man parts. I find myself baffled and confused yet intrigued by how involved little boys become with their wee wee. Wait, I take that back....it's a PENIS. For the record, you don't hear high school boys or even grown men throwing those terms around, do you? Wee wee, pee pee, wiener, (my husband and mothers faces are getting redder as they reads this, I can see it now....I'm most certainly going to receive a phone call saying, "Keri! I can't believe you wrote the word PENIS in your blog!") junk, man parts, etc. I'm not a big fan of nicknames when it comes to body parts, however amusing they may be. For the sake of this post I'll stick to pee pee instead of using the correct anatomical explanation of the little boy parts. There is nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to body parts.

PENIS. (It's okay, you can read it.....you can even say it out loud)

Where was I?
Right.
Sorry.

So we all know that my children have a hard time keep their clothes on for reasons that seem to elude me, and potty training makes an even better excuse to bare all. When the clothes come off, the weirdness with the pee pee begins. Just this last week I have had to stop dinner and have the, "please don't talk about your penis at the dinner table" conversation with two little boys who wouldn't stop giggling. I know it's normal....or maybe it's not?! Maybe my children are the only ones that think their pee pee's are weapons or try to pee on each other in the bathtub. Really. Do little girls do that?!

"Hey, Sally....I'm going to pee on you!! Haa ha ha ha ha!"

I don't think so.

I've also had to have the, "please get your hands out of your pants conversation" along with the, "the mailman doesn't need to see your pee pee" discussion. I know all of this is in good fun for little boys and we'll probably have many more pee pee discussions, all of which I am handing off to the man of the house from now on. I couldn't be happier with having two boys but there are just some things that will be left unanswered and covered up for that matter.


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Thankful Thursday

1. Thankful for my camera and the looks I get from this little dude. Mom, seriously stop taking my photo. You may be wondering what car this is in because their feet aren't smushed up against the seats. We had a rental van for a day while our car was being fixed. To put an end to rumors no we aren't getting a van or new car or new van or goat for that matter. I was however swayed a little by the fact that they couldn't touch each other. Amazing. In case you missed it, this commercial rocks.
2. The new bunk beds. Really. Okay, these aren't the bunk beds, but I am so thrilled that Brody can't get down from his nap and has to be at my mercy!!! There is so much more room for storage and they boys seem to be sleeping better....as well as my children sleep....which isn't really good at all. Amen.
3. The pure joy and entertainment factor stemming from the short one. He cracks me up. He cracks my friends up. He cracks the ladies at the Dr's office up too. I'd like to say he got my sense of humor but since he's a carbon copy of Lonnie......
4. Warmer sunny days and trips to the park. Reminds me of a line from Forrest gump, "Jenny taught me how to climb. I taught her how to dangle."

"Brody taught me how to spin. I taught him how to hang on for dear life!"
5. My baby who is growing up! He is officially registered for AK in the afternoon's starting this fall. Holy cow, where did the time go. He's also growing out of his shoes...again!
6. Not so much thankful for the dogs that shed all over my house, bark at leaves and eat sand toys. I am however grateful that Brody loves them so much...almost too much. He's lucky he hasn't gotten a nip to the nose for what he does to these poor dogs. I'm pretty sure if I were given a screw driver enema, I'd try to bite someones face off too.

7. Track is ALMOST OVER. I get my husband back on weekends! Hooray. Can't be more excited.

8. My echo cardiogram came back with no unusual findings. So my heart is healthy. Now we just have to figure out why the hands and feet are purple and tingly.

9. My family. I love them all. My in laws and cousins and grandparents etc. I am so thankful for such great family. We may not see each other often, but we all share the love in one way or another.

10. Sweet red wine. I really can't stand red wine and found a nice sweeter one with all of the heart benefits. I've enjoyed a glass or two each night trying to unwind after speeding ticket, working three part time jobs (coffee shop, cleaning houses and artwork) and dealing with obnoxious people.
As chaos seems to settle in (in my brain at least) I always have to remind myself of the things I'm thankful for, even if they're small. I'm the type of person that has to be doing something at all times, I'm not sure if that is classified as ADD or OCD, but it has it's benefits and downfalls. Some benefits being 1. I get a lot done during the day 2. I can't go to bed if the kitchen is dirty 2. I'm hopefully teaching my children the value of hard work because it seems to be lacking from our society these days. The downfalls are 1. I'm pretty exhausted but don't nap or sleep well 2. I don't know the meaning of the word relax 3. There have been a few projects that I've, "skimped" on in order to get them done and that isn't good at all. These projects usually involve dishes....and the food that I missed on the backside of the pans. Such is life.

No matter how hectic or chaotic my schedule seems to get finding the time to do a few little things like read my bible, kiss my husband and play with my kids always makes my day go so much better. Don't get me wrong, there are days when I'd like to read a magazine, punch my husband in the arm and lock my children in their room, but at least I'm making an effort, right? Being thankful for little things is what its all about.

Now I'm off to search for the missing Incredibles DVD we borrowed from the library.....excellent!


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Thank you!

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone, including stalkers, old high school buddies, friends, complete strangers and family who took the time to write an encouraging comment on my blog! I am honored to know that ya'll read this and may question my sanity, but still think I'm cool. I'm glad I can enlighten, inspire and make you laugh on a pretty regular basis. I have fun doing it but I wouldn't quote me as a source for your parenting/marriage/faith filled life. I'm perfectly flawed.

I was having a bit of a rough evening...let's just say officer friendly caught me speeding.....again. NOTE TO SELF: SET THE CRUISE CONTROL!!!! There goes my first real paycheck. Awesome. I totally deserved it because I was totally speeding.

As far as obnoxious comments go....dude, not cool.

Off to plant the vegetable garden and try to think of a brilliant way to keep two boys and two dogs out of it. Open to any and all suggestions....and the dude at Menards was totally serious when he suggested an electric fence (and all I could think of was Brody taking a wee on it....)

Cheers!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Who are you?!

So I have been secretly (or not so secretly) tracking this blog to see how many hits and page loads it gets because I was curious. I was blown away by the actual total number per day and then realized that I really need to proof read before I hit, "publish post." Thank goodness for spell check! I should probably also cut out the use of words such as penis, boobies, poo flinger and streaker because my family might have me admitted. They make the story so much more interesting.
Aside from the fact that I enjoy writing about the very adventurous yet random happenings in our every day life, I am also very honored to know that people actually think I'm cool enough to read. Maybe you're the opposite and think I'm a blathering idiot and use my lack of sentence structure and proper grammar as jokes in your stand up comedy routine. Whatever floats your boat. I am however, very curious to see who reads this blog. I know who some of you are (yes, even you) but I know there are some bashful blog readers that need to speak up. So here is what you are going to do. 1. Leave a comment, even if it's anonymous 2. Tell me why you enjoy reading this blog (or don't enjoy reading it, but be nice, I'm sensitive)

Deal?

Here, I'll give you an example:

Name: Hotmama
Comment: Hi, my name is Betty Lou and I live in Texas and I love your blog. I don't have any children yet, but I'm pretty sure I'd like to request girls. Is that possible? Keep up the good work.

or

Name: Pooflinger
Comment: I don't really like your blog, however I am drawn to it because of your amazing writing skills.

C'mon. Do it. Don't be scared.

If you're a creeper and use this blog to look at pictures of little kids, then you deserve to be kicked in the groin.....hard. I really don't want to hear from you, in fact I would quite appreciate it if you never visited this site again.

To all of the rest of you, thanks for reading! I'm glad you think I'm cool.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Monday's Musings

This little man is into EVERYTHING. This doesn't surprise me one bit. I was scrambling around this morning going from working at the coffee house to trying to get clothes on Baylor for preschool and I hear, "Moooommmm, I'm tuck!" I did contemplate for a few seconds leaving him there until the mission at hand was completed. We are going to start operation potty in the next few weeks. I'm not looking forward to the curse of the pee pee but I am looking forward to not purchasing diapers! I think the bribe of choice will be Starburst and gum, which is much cheaper than Thomas the Train!
Like I don't have 1,234 other things to do, I decided that the bathroom downstairs needed a new paint job. It was stars and stripes (not sure what I was thinking) and now it is a nice shade of khaki green (which happened to be mis-mixed and only $4!) I love a good deal. I also get an idea in my brain and it has to be done right away. Just ask my lovely husband who has to hold me down when a creative thought enters my mind. This is probably the reason why I can't sleep at night.

I've started the morning shift at the coffee house and it was pretty awesome. I got up at 6 and got there (which is about a 200 yard walk) around 6:15 to start the cinnamon rolls (which are amazing!) Once summer gets here and Lonnie's schedule calms down a little, I'll hopefully be picking up some more hours. Like I don't have enough to do...I like to keep things interesting. I'm also contemplating which baked goods I will experiment with. I've had requests for my carrot cake already, so that is on the list.

We have also made changes in our eating habits as well. Lonnie went to the cardiologist after I forced him to get a full physical after his father passed away, just to make sure. Everything was fine except for his CRP levels were elevated. He will be seeing a cardiologist next week to make sure nothing is wrong. We are a fairly healthy family, we try very hard to feed our family healthy food but sometimes we struggle with two very picky eaters. Lonnie and I went grocery shopping together last week (yes, it was a hot date) and bought lots of heart healthy foods. Unfortunately eating healthy also means your grocery bill will sky rocket, but we feel that it's worth it. We are also trying to eliminate all high fructose crap (which is seriously harder than it sounds) and most baked goods or processed foods. I have a stash of dark chocolate hidden for the craving I get about 2:00! Most of the foods we already had, but we had to get a few extras, here is what we try to eat:

* Almonds and walnuts
* Dark leafy greens
* Lots of fresh fruits and veggies
* Almond milk
* Flax Seed
* Avocado
* Wine and dark chocolate (my two favorites)
* Salmon and other fish
* Lean turkey
* Natural peanut butter with flax seed and omega3's
* Lots of whole grain everything (crackers, bread, pasta, flour)
* Nature Valley granola bars (the only ones without high fructose corn syrup, unless you make your own, but who has the time?)
* Yogurt and skim milk cheese sticks for snacks

Lonnie has already made a comment about how the change in his diet has made him feel so much better. I'd have to agree. The boys aren't taking to it as nicely as we had hoped, but I did find a whole grain mac and cheese that they love. I didn't have to give up my coffee or chocolate, so I'm happy.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Saturday snapshots

I am convinced that toys are useless. Looks like the Speidel boys will be getting boxes (along with sticks, rocks and mud) for Christmas! They're practicing for the Jamaican Bobsled team.
I found this strawberry and thought it was awesome. Looks like a butt.....a saggy one. It was worth of a photo. My mind works like that you know.
Some people catch frogs. Some people catch butterflies. We catch Brody.
Speaking of Brody. Did I mention how much he LOVES his sandbox? I believe he's seen here trying to dig a hole to China.

Friday, May 14, 2010

I love my job(s)

I got nothing deep or intellectually stimulating today. My plate is full and I have a simple mind. I have paint on my hands and caffeine in my veins. Lonnie is gone for the weekend (Three more weeks of track left...hooooray!)

So I will leave you with this lovely video to entertain.

I love my jobs, especially being a mom. I don't need to change careers...but if you do...this is for you.



Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Black eyes and bunk beds

So we have been (okay, I have been) trying to convince Baylor and Brody that bunk beds would be so much fun to have in their room for many many reasons!

We tried some bunk beds a while ago and although very grateful for them, they took up the entire room and the boys ended up sleeping together anyways. So I broke down yesterday and went and bought bunk beds (that would actually fit up our old stair case) We had a problem with the last ones fitting, so we had to make sure these were going to make it. So after three blisters, chasing Brody around for my screw driver and two hours later....we have bunk beds!! I think I am more thrilled than the boys. Last night was a little rough, they wanted to sleep in the top bunk together. After an hour of convincing and disciplining, they FINALLY fell asleep. We're going to add some vines and animals and make them, "jungle" bunk beds. I'm also putting my money on Brody for the first broken bone from falling off of the beds. We shall see!

Speaking of injuries. My lovely two year old happen to catch my eye with a drink dispenser at the coffee house this morning and I am sporting a sweet shiner. Thanks buddy.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Divine Interventions

A friend once told me that if God provided everything and then some for us, we wouldn't learn how to trust and how to depend on Him. How true that is! I can't count how many times that we have had to trust that God is looking out for us. We've had to trust that we would make it through the month financially, that He would heal the ailments and provide for the needs of our family. When I say needs, I'm talking about the essentials of living, not the things that make us comfortable. I feel that God blesses our family tremendously because I choose to stay home with my children, and that is just the beginning. I like to call the times that God just blows my mind, Divine Interventions. I have learned to be thankful for EVERYTHING that God provides, whether it be large or small. Nothing happens be coincidence, it is for sure a divine intervention!
We had been informed about a year ago after the passing of my great Aunt Lois that some money would be coming our way. We didn't know how much and were pretty sure that it wouldn't be very much, but we were thankful for anything! She was a great lady and loved to give and gave to many organizations. A year passed and we had forgotten about the money and moved on with our lives. Now one of our goals is to pay the last loan off, my student loan (Thank you Cornell!) and that is why I have taken on a third job at the coffee shop. Still trusting that God would provide, the task at hand seemed daunting and impossible. I am also convinced that when one thing breaks (the washing machine) that everything else follow suit in our house (the window, the car, the crack in the bathtub) So that had been added to our things to pay off. Once again, hating debt and working to be debt free! Okay, back to the story.......so on Sunday, we received a phone call from my Grandma saying that they had finally resolved all of the hold ups with the inheritance money and that we were going to receive our check soon. Not only would the check cover the remaining balance on my student loan, but it would pay for the broken window and wash machine! God is SO good! We can finally start saving for the boys' college, putting away some emergency money and will be debt free (except the house) soon! How awesome is that. It may seem like a little thing, but it's HUGE to us.

Divine intervention my friends, DIVINE!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

You can pick your friends

....and you can pick your nose, but you can't pick your friends nose.


OR CAN YOU?


Yup. You can.


It's even more fun when it's your brothers nose and he's trying to pick yours too.....in the check out line at Wally World. It was probably the cold pizza I gave him for breakfast this morning per his request. Which therefor entitles me to Mother of the Year.

Sigh.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Workin girl

I like to keep things interesting. I also like to be able to do fun things once in a while like take the boys out to eat or buy some clothes that are new rather than from Goodwill, decorate or even indulge in some new art supplies. We also want to be able to tithe to our church consistently and have seen blessings come from this! These things however, require money. You know, the source of martial fights, family disputes and stock market crashes. It turns people into spenders but it also turns people into givers. Yes, that's the money I'm talking about. My first and foremost job is to stay at home with these two wonderful boys who call me mother, take care of my house, husband and family. The BEST job in the world, I might add. I have been making artwork out of my, "studio" to help make it through the winter months of high heating bills and unexpected expenses. I also started cleaning a few houses regularly and that has helped as well. I am now going to add a third job to my resume working at the coffee shop (Espresso 134) down the street...about 200 yards to be exact. I am very excited. I've also been asked to help with some of the baking, which now gives me an excuse to bake and not have it in the house! The hours will be evening and weekends as soon as Lonnie is done with his regular season. He will also be starting his drivers ed job this summer (pray for him!) We're hoping to pay off my student loan, which according to Dave Ramsey, would make us debt free! It's going to be a great feeling! So wish me luck. Pray for my sanity.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Swagger Wagon


I may have changed my mind about wanting a mini van thanks to this commercial. Maybe.....

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Random thoughts

Random thoughts.
By Keri.

1. God is good. He answers prayers!

2. Brody reminds me a little of an Ewok.

3. The neighbor boy might just drive me insane this summer.

4. I have three commissioned art pieces that I'm working on!

5. With a small delay from, "Aunt flow" and a small freak out on my part, I now know that I am not ready for baby #3

6. The car broke and the bill was $200. I sold some artwork at Chalk the Walk and it equaled $200. Awesome.

7. We really need to stop revolving our lives around food.

8. Be smart with your money. Don't take it for granted. Don't be selfish. Don't spend unwisely.

9. Just because you think you know everything about parenting, doesn't mean we want to.

10. Before I die, I think I shall swim in a large pool of pudding.....chocolate.

11. Be very thankful that you or your spouse has a job, a house and food in the pantry. The food may not have been purchased at a high end grocery store the house may be freezing in the winter and the job may involve a few nights alone for you, but be thankful nonetheless!

12. Skinny jeans do not look good on everyone.

13. I am going to start working at the coffee shop (Espresso 134) a 1/2 a block from my house on the weekends and nights. I am stoked.

14. Do not give your children saltine crackers after you have just vacuumed the floor.

15. Sometimes seeing isn't believing except for when it comes to wet paint. I always have to touch it just to make sure.

16. In Australia, it's illegal to dress up like Batman. No joke.

17. If you can't convince them, confuse them.

18. My husband is so good at what he does, I am very proud of him.

19. I miss my father in law and it breaks my heart to see my husband grieve for him.

20. I should be allowed to throw a tantrum once in a while.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Stinkin feet

Not talking about the smell, however I'm sure they do smell....as do all feet!

So I have been having strange feet and hand issues when I run (and also when I don't run) I was diagnosed with this strange condition called Chilblains, which is fairly common and my feet get all swollen, red and then grey (it's freaky!) It has a lot to do with coldness but also some circulation issues. It is also a symptom of other diseases such as connective tissue disorders, Lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. When I run, my hands and feet go numb about a mile into the run. I thought it was shoes and then maybe a potassium deficiency, but we checked those and it's not the reason. They stay numb after I run for about an hour which is really strange too. I went to the vascular Dr this morning to check out any vascular problems and I'm good to go. He did suggest that the way that I run (like a dork apparently and very tight through my shoulders) might have to do with why my hands are numb. It may be cutting off some nerves, thus making the hands go numb. He suggested Physical Therapy...we'll see. As far as the other tests go, I'm going to get an echo cardiogram of my heart tomorrow to rule out any issues there and then check with a rhumatologist to rule that out. It sounds like a lot, but I guess it's better to be safe than sorry right? This is what happens when you have a mom that is a nurse! (Who went with me this morning, thanks mom!)

This weekend was crazy busy with Chalk the Walk and then our brass band played down in Mt.Pleasant. I feel like my head is still spinning and that is just with my activities, what happens when my kids get into theirs? Eeeek!