Thursday, July 29, 2010


Not that it surprises me that my daughters both know exactly what they want.  I told Scott that it was the curse that comes with having me stay home with them!  I've been trying to get Elizabeth to talk more and to tell me what she wants before the fit comes out.  Her language skills are getting better, although I'm not sure which scares me more...the fact that I can't understand half of what she says or that I'm the only one that understands the other half.

Examining the dishes.  I'm not sure why we needed sunglasses on in the house...
 This really all started with Scott asking her which pj's she wants to wear at night.  They would go through the whole drawer until she saw what she wanted.  Now, it's a no-brainer that she wants to wear the silky princess jammies her grammy got her.  So after hearing the nightly debate, I started asking her what she wants to eat during the day.  

"Ummm..."  (she answers every question with a long ummmm...)  "Pi-peetz?"  Her intonation is asking but her expression is all demanding as she nods her head as if to talk me into her request for pizza.  Today, I finally gave in and she made the trip to the deep freezer to get the little mini pizzas I buy her for Friday dinners when we all get to eat something other than Mommy's cooking.

I lost my head for a moment this morning and asked her which shirt she wanted to wear.  We went through the entire closet until she said yes to a pink tank top with a zebra on it that Miss Alice gave her last summer.  She seemed happy with it until I pulled out the matching shorts.  Her brow furrowed (are these my kids or what?!) and I told her to deal with's an outfit and she'll wear one with the other.  After 20 minutes of outfit picking, I won't go through that again!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Rachel and weight loss

Her sister steals the stage a lot right now, but this little girl is growing by leaps and bounds.  She can sit in the tri-pod (supported by her hands) and loves to kick and splash in the bathtub.  She focuses really hard on whatever she is holding onto and loves that she can grab the things she wants (like her sister's hair).

Speaking of her sister, Rachel loves Elizabeth!  She lights up when she sees her and will stop whatever she's doing when she hears her voice.  It is so sweet to see their relationship develop.

She also loves rice cereal and sweet potatoes.  We move on to green beans next! We've been trying to work with the beginner sippy because I want her to take in a little water with the solid foods.  So far, she really doesn't want anything to do with it...which is in complete contrast to Elizabeth, who would do anything to get her hands on the baby's sippy.  

The weight loss part is in regards to me...not my child!  I am so excited that I'm within 10 lbs of my pre-baby weight!  I've been working really hard in the gym, but it wasn't until I focused on my nutrition that I really began to see changes.  It's funny how we crave control in our lives, yet we are so unwilling to control what we put in our mouths.  My husband has been so patient with me through the complaints of this process, but I really feel that the end is in sight.  I may fit in my summer clothes yet!


We hit the road again last week to head back home to introduce Rachel to Jason and Lynn and Grandma and Papap.  The trip was long, but the girls were so good and rolled with the punches well.  I have to tell you, I am entirely in debt to my friends and family that help us get anywhere.  For this trip, Mom flew down to Nashville and drove up to WV with us and then to PA to see Grandma.  Andrea followed us in order to bring Mom back so we could visit with Jason and Lynn in Wheeling.  In the meantime, Scott flew into Pittsburgh and drove us back.  Both Chris and Andrea have sacrificed their time and cars to travel with us.  I am just so thankful for their help.  I'm just not confident in my ability to travel with the girls by myself until Elizabeth will listen and obey.  And who knows when that will be!

But anyway, I didn't take as many pictures as I wanted on this trip, so I don't have a ton to share.  It was so wonderful to see everyone and to be able to throw Mom a surprise 60th birthday party!!  Allison and Andrea made the decorations and Chris helped with the food.  Of course, Allison made an awesome cake and we had about 20 people come.  Elizabeth began the party pretty low-key but geared up into her normal self by the end of it.  She must have run up and down that little ramp a million times.  By the end, her feet must have hurt because she was scooting up and down it on her butt.  I thought I would never get those shorts clean!

Rachel with Grandma and Papap.  I kept hoping she's put her hand down on top of theirs for the photo opportunity, but she was too busy chewing on it.

Elizabeth was shy around them but played well.  She wasn't too keen on sitting on laps.
We hid out at Chris and Terry's house while I fixed the potato salad and slaw for the party.  Chris suffered through playing with my children.  And yes, Elizabeth is chewing on a golf club. 

Mom and Rachel at the party.  You can hear Elizabeth in the background.
What can I say?  She is her father's daughter!!

Approaching the two's...

I refuse to call them terrible.  I just can't bear the thought of this household becoming more chaotic.  (Ha!  I should have thought of that before having kids, right??!)

This is my teenager look...
We have about a week until ERS turns two, but you'd never know it.  The kid is crazy...for some reason, especially after dinner.  I mean,  you would think that we hooked her up on an IV of straight sugar water, the way she runs around when she gets out of her high chair.  I'm sure it has something to do with us changing up the routine and getting Rachel ready for bed first...our baby just needs to get to bed earlier.

Two nights ago, Scott walked in on her pulling off the entire roll of toilet paper.  Once caught, she ran into the baby's room and pulled the changing pad off the dresser, laid on it and proceeded to attempt to buckle herself in.  When she couldn't figure that out, she opted to just jump up and down on it.

Yesterday morning, she did the same thing.  Well, I knew what she was doing, so I didn't walk in the room right away.  Little did I know that she had taken the just-opened container of wipes and pulled every single one of them out.  Why yes...I was nursing the baby at the time...  You catch on quick to my child!

Who, me?!

Thanks to Fisher Price and their dang toys that teach pushing buttons, turning dials and pulling levers, she can now (and will) turn on the dishwasher and washer and dryer.  There are parts of her development that are so sweet though.  She asks for hugs all the time and will say bye-bye and wave at people we pass.  She has gotten really shy and will hug my leg when we enter pretty much any place and will attempt to hide her face behind her arm.  She loves to sing with the radio, and most of the time will sing the ABC song to any song that's playing.  Surprisingly, she has gotten a lot better with Rachel and loves to make her roll over on the mat.  Sometimes she tries to roll on her.  Of course, Rachel has gotten so big, she can pretty much hold her own with her big sister.

Rachel: Mom, you know what's going to happen...why are you just standing there?
 But last night tops the cake.  My poor husband fell prey to the worst ERS episode yet...  I was in the kitchen and he had just finished buttoning Rachel's pj's when he heard a splash.  Normally, he just leaves the bathwater in the tub and adds some more for Elizabeth's bath.  He thought, "I'm sure Elizabeth is just playing in Rachel's bathwater."  Oh no...

I hear him yell from the kitchen.  He walked in the bathroom to find Elizabeth STANDING IN THE TOILET WITH THE TOILET BRUSH.  Upon seeing her daddy, she raised the cleaning-tool-she-knew-she-wasn't- supposed-to-have high over her head so the toilet water dripped down in her hair.  "Dadda, dadda," she tried to hand him the brush.  Upon the sound of his yell, I started walking down the hall,  nd like any good mother and wife, I took the baby and let him deal with our oldest. 

She told me I could have them!

Sigh...and now my time to write is over, as my daughter is covered with oatmeal and yogurt (her choice of breakfast).  She abandoned her spoon long ago and is now informing me that she is "wet."  Of course, it doesn't help that she is just taking huge fist fulls of oatmeal and is dumping them into her empty yogurt container.

Weekend!  Are you here yet??

"Helping" my husband

I thought I would help my "where are we going to put this" husband and pick up the garage.  Scott HATES a messy garage and I've made the mistake of not only ordering a play kitchen for our daughter's birthday (which came in a HUGE box...that needs to be stored until the big day!) but also mentioning that I would love to look for a double jogging stroller since Rachel now likes walks.  

Side note here...we have at least 5 strollers, so I understand his lack of enthusiasm, but I promised that I would get rid of at least two of them if I could find a good deal on one.  So when I walked into the garage yesterday and noticed four of the five strollers all over the place (ha!), I thought I would help him out by hanging up my single jogger on a hook.  Little did I know that when I raised the garage door, it would catch the stroller, rip a hole in the wall from the hook, and catch two wheels in the process.  Ugh...I yanked and pulled on the stupid thing, with Elizabeth behind me asking to "Walk...walk!"  I left it.  Hopeless, I called my husband and told him that I had probably broken the stroller and garage door.  He just sighed and told me that he would fix it and asked if he could please get back to work.  (What?  That doesn't count as an emergency?!)  Once he got home, he fixed it in two seconds and came back in the house singing the Handy Manny theme song ("you break it, we fix it"). He also asked me not to "help" him in the garage anymore.  Success!!  And now I have it on the record!  ha!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Little Miss Noodle Nose

It's only fitting that this experience happened on Andrea's birthday.  Last night, I heated up Elizabeth spaghetti for dinner.  She was starving and has been battling a little cold, so she started eating like her life depended on it.  My back was to her and I heard her cough and then scream. very sad that I knew exactly what happened...she had sucked a noodle up her nose.

23 years ago, I experienced the same thing when my baby sister sucked a noodle up her nose after we'd gone swimming.  She screamed the exact same way and my mom was able to pull it out with a pair of tweezers.  Elizabeth had a macaroni noodle up her nose once last summer (she sneezed it out...gross) and my husband went through most of his adolescent life with a stick up his nose.  Therefore, we are somewhat "nose experts" and got her out of the high chair and onto the bed.  I grabbed Rachel's snot-sucker and went to work. Elizabeth flailed...she kicked...she screamed.  Scott had her head and I was laying on the legs of my poor baby girl.  Thankfully, she sneezed out the end and we were able to pull it out in one piece. 

Also thankfully, for you, I did not take pictures.

The Wiggles Dance

Too cute not to share...  Scott loves it when she does this little dance.  This was after dinner one night.  You can see the dogs in the background.

The joys...

Holy's been a week!  The last thing I've had time to do is sit and write, but now I need the therapy, so I will update you on my children.  When I say Elizabeth is wide open, I mean that she is WIDE OPEN!  Scott and I have decided to look into some sort of gymnastics program for her because she is on full speed ahead all the time.  Her favorite game (as of late) is to take off in a sprint in the complete other direction whenever you ask her to do anything.  

"Elizabeth, can you get me a burp cloth?"  ZOOM!  To the kitchen!

"Elizabeth, can you sit on the potty?"  ZIP!  To the bedroom. 

It's never-ending.  Especially at bath time, when she becomes (cue superhero theme music), the naked streaker!

We've been trying to perfect our nighttime routine in order to get Rachel-exhausted-cranky-pants down a little bit sooner.  So Scott has been giving her a bath first while I do the dishes and then I take her and nurse her and put her down while he gets Elizabeth in the tub...which is a process.  As soon as her clothes comes off, she comes running down the hallway into the living room (FYI: opposite end of the house from the bathroom, surprise, surprise).  She jumps up onto the couch, holds onto the back and jumps up and down as hard as she can.  As soon as Scott walks in, she rolls off and sprints into the kitchen.  There, she stops.  She cannot get enough of looking at herself in the reflection of the stove.  Scott does the best imitation of her, standing there with her belly sticking out, singing to her reflection.  Two nights ago, he walked in after her and, as he turned to go back to the tub, I heard, "By any chance did you spill a lot of liquid in the kitchen?  You know...right in front of the stove?"

The naked streaker, strikes again!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Here's to Four Years!

As I was pulling on my swim suit this morning to take the girls to the splash park, Elizabeth was running around the house singing the choo-choo song ("All Aboard!") and Rachel was voicing her obvious disgust over mandatory belly time.  It suddenly occurred to me that four years ago at that time, I had been pulling on my wedding dress to marry my best friend.  I was so beyond nervous, mainly due to the fact that everyone would be looking at me, not because I had any hesitation over saying "I do" to Scott.  I can't remember if I ate anything that morning.  My dad had come over and fixed waffles (since it was a Saturday!) and my sisters, Amanda, Courtney and Anessa were all at the house getting ready.  Lynn was in charge at the church and we started walking down the aisle at high noon.  I'm sure everyone thinks their wedding was perfect and, looking back at that day, I am no different.  The music was beautiful, Preacher Terry gave a stunning message and my husband looked at me like I was the most beautiful thing he'd ever seen.  We hosted an awesome party at the Marriott.  The toasts were incredible, the bartender was lenient on our bar tab and, thanks to Amy Shipman Hissa telling them to turn off the lights, everyone had a great time dancing.  We had our after-party at Wild Wings and almost everyone made it down to laugh and listen to bad karaoke.  Andrea even got to stay after hours thanks to Dana Jenkins giving up her "I'm over 21" wrist band.  Such a perfect day and I can truly say that we've been running ever since.

I'm not sure how Kathi and I got on the subject of Scott Shipman one day, but we did.  We were all in the same graduate program at Gardner-Webb and had gone through one year of classes together.  It was a small group - maybe 10 students - so we got to know each other pretty well.  She was sure that he was single and I thought he had mentioned one time about having a girl friend.  Either way, I thought that he was very nice and that he looked nice in his clothes (HA!).  I didn't really think about it any more.  Until Scott and I were talking during a break at a staff meeting one day and he mentioned that a lot of the GA's were going out to celebrate one of the guys graduating the program.  You know...if I wanted to go.  

Long story short, I went.  It was a lot of fun and when the bar closed at 2, Scott asked me if I could give him a ride home.  I felt horrible because it had rained the night before and I had left my passenger side window cracked, which soaked the seat in 'everybody's favorite little white Chevy.' He assured me that he didn't care and we talked all the way home.  I'll never forget him telling me that he was impressed with the person that I was and that he'd really like to spend more time with me.  I hoped he couldn't see me turn bright red in the dark or that he couldn't hear my voice shake when I told him that I thought that would be great.

We dated three years before we got married.  In the beginning, we were so poor that all we could do was get to know each other.  We would watch tv, cook dinner, workout - we didn't go out a lot.  Looking back, I think that was a huge blessing because we didn't have a lot of distractions.  Scott proposed on the pier at Myrtle Beach.  It had rained all day and the weather finally broke for my nervous husband to pop the question.  We were married a year later.

The last four years can probably best be summed up in numbers.  We've had two kids and two dogs.  Well, and two cats for that matter (although they are gone now).  We've lived in three houses and owned one (now rented out).  We've lived in two states and have had five jobs between us.

We were baptized together (thank you Brenda and Kenny for being there) and cheered for each other's teams on the side lines.  We've given countless kisses, said a million prayers and have laughed too many times to count.  It's been the best four years of my life.  Thank you, Scott...I love you.