Friday, August 30, 2019

Friday Thoughts

Whew… it’s been a week!  For the most part, the boys have been waking up and getting off to school without issue.  But, by the time they get home, it’s meltdown city.  Last night, W cried because Charlie was in the room, because he missed his baby teeth and they were gone forever, because he didn’t pay attention to the book I was reading and missed the story (since he was crying), and the list goes on.  By the time bed time rolls around, the boys are overtired and losing their minds.

On top of the crankiness, A and I both had really busy weeks.  A had Open House at his school on Monday night.  I had a work dinner Tuesday followed by a School Board Meeting on Wednesday night.  Suffices to say, we’re all looking forward to a long weekend.

I’ve mentioned it before, but S lately is either as sweet as can be or wreaking havoc.  Either way, he keeps me laughing.  Lately, he’s been telling us he’s “frizzering” – a combination of freezing and shivering (clever!).  The other night I was tucking him in and gave him a hug and a kiss.  He told me I give way better hugs than W.  The other day, A was explaining the premise of the Wizard of Oz – which the boys have never seen or even heard of.  A explained that a tornado lifts up the house.  S responded, “Well, good Lord!” (in what I swear was a southern accent).  Haha!

I forgot to mention that A had CF clinic a couple weeks ago.  We were disappointed to learn that his FEV1 % dropped.  It wasn’t a significant drop, but after the hospital admission and IV antibiotics, we were both really hoping for better results.  After A’s last admission, his lung function improved by 10% so to see a drop this time around was really really disappointing.  Hoping cooler weather and a bit more time will help his FEV1 results move upwards.  He returns to CF clinic in a month – think positive thoughts for us!

We don’t have too much planned for the weekend, but we will definitely continue to work on potty training Charlie and preventing him from chewing all the things.  Aside from these two challenges, he been great and I really enjoy having him in our family. 😊

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Weekend Recap

We survived the first few days of school!!  Between adding a pup to the family and trying to get back on track, I will admit I was completely overwhelmed.  I’m not sure why – I think it was just getting back into a routine and on a schedule.  The start time for A’s school changed and he actually leaves for work nearly an hour later.  This means he’s around longer in the morning and even takes W to school a few times a week – it’s been a huge help and a big relief.  On the downside, he gets home an hour later.

Charlie is great and we’re really enjoying getting to know him.  He’s still a puppy and we frequently find things around the house that he’s decided to chew up – decorations, toys, board books, pencils.  On Friday, I came home from work and my mom had to let me know that he chewed one of my favorite pairs of shoes.  Not going to lie, I was a bit devastated.  I’m very attached to my shoes and clothes.  This has been an adjustment – Addie never chewed anything.  We’ve been closing doors and trying to crate Charlie when we’re not home, but he’s figured out how to open his crate.  I know most puppies chew things and we’ll work through it – I think I’ve spent my entire pay check on chew toys. 😉

We’re also working on potty training – another challenge.  Again, Addie was super easy in this department and picked up on going potty outside right away.  This guy goes outside BUT also goes inside.  He doesn’t tell us when he has to go and doesn’t hold his potty during the day.  Thankfully, he usually makes it to the potty pads.  He’s a smart boy so hopefully he gets it soon.

 On the bright side, he’s so good outside!  We’ve had lots of fun going on walks and meeting neighbors.  We went on two long walks over the weekend.  I really needed the exercise and Charlie was completely worn out so two things accomplished.  Our weather has been beautiful.  It already feels like fall is in the air and we loved getting lots of fresh air.  I would not recommend getting a pup and starting school the same week, but that’s just how things worked out.

 Other fun activities this weekend:  We stopped by my mom’s house on Friday and ordered Chinese food.  S painted a bird house outside and the boys visited the park.  We ran lots of errands and also spent lots of time outside.  Although things are hectic, I really love this time of the year!

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

A Busy Week, A New Addition, and the Weekend Recap

Things sure have been busy around here.  Last week started with me helping at the Open House at S’s preschool.  I enjoyed meeting new parents and discussing what I loved about the school, but it meant that I was gone for over 12 hours.  I got home just in time to tuck the boys into bed. 

Wednesday was so much fun.  The boys met me for lunch after their check up and then A took them to Nani and Papa’s house for the double sleepover they’d been requesting.  After work, A and I met up with friends for trivia night.  I love trivia night and it was great catching up with friends - both things we don't get to do often.  We all have little kids so it’s really difficult to get out – this was a rare treat!  We ended up finishing in fifth place and taking home a cheap bottle of vodka.  I was so sad when it was over because with the start of school, I know we won’t be able to return any time soon.  Thankful for a fun night with friends.

Thursday, after work, A and I headed to The Melting Pot restaurant.  Hands down, my very favorite restaurant.  We never go because it’s about an hour away and meals take about 2 hours – it turns into a very long dinner date.  But with the boys at Nani and Papa’s, we were able to indulge.  It was so yummy and I was so uncomfortably full afterwards.

Speaking of the boys, they ended up taking the train to Chicago with Nani and Papa and riding a boat to Navy Pier.  They even played at the children’s museum for awhile while they were at Navy Pier.  It sounds like they had a really great time.

Friday, I had a work event in Chicago.  I went to Navy Pier and had lunch on a boat cruise.  The Chicago Air and Water Show was taking place over the weekend and the airplanes were practicing their stunts and formations.  It was neat to see, but also very loud.  I had lots of fun, enjoyed spending time with my new colleagues, but it was a long day.

Saturday requires some back story.  It’s been over a year since we had to say goodbye to our Addie dog.  I miss her incredibly.  Like I still can’t talk about her without tears.  She was such a loyal dog.  She was a rescue and came to us with issues, but in our house, in our care, she was perfect.  Out of the house and any time people came over was another story.  But in the house, when it was A and I, she was always by our side, always knew when we were sad, always there to lick tears or just sit close when we needed her most, and she behaved so well.  It took a really long time to get over losing her.  Maybe I’m still not completely over it.  While in Maryland, A and I discussed adding a dog to our family.  We were both finally feeling ready.  I had been following local rescue groups on social media and found a sweet pup who was supposed to be good with kids and cats – not so easy to find.  On Saturday, we went to meet him.  He instantly hopped up and licked my cheek.  It was something Addie would have done (and did all the time).  He was gentle with boys, super friendly, and overall, just a mellow, happy guy.  So we decided to adopt him.  So far, he’s been such a good boy.  He’s met neighbors and neighbor dogs – something we were never able to do with Addie.  We’re working on potty training and the cats are not really fans of him (well, mainly Franklin isn’t a fan), but all in all, he’s done really, really well in our house.  After much debate, we decided to name him Charlie.  Charlie Sheffield to be exact. 😊  I know it can take awhile for dogs and cats to adjust to one another so we’re hoping Franklin comes around.  In the meantime, the basement has been a safe haven for the cats and we keep a close eye on all the animals.

Sunday, storms rolled through and we actually lost power in the morning.  It was interesting getting ready for church in the dark.  The afternoon was spent going for a walk, playing outside, and decorating for fall.  I know it’s super early, but it’s my favorite time of the year and I was ready.  Bring on ALL the pumpkin spice!!!  Both boys start school this week.  I can’t believe our summer is over – it went so fast!

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Maryland Vacation Part 2

Sunday, we decided to head into Washington D.C. and walk around the National Mall.  This turned out to be a great plan because it wasn’t very crowded and street parking was free.  We knew the boys would do best walking outside and wouldn’t be interested in actually going in buildings so going on a Sunday was perfect.  We started with the Washington Monument and could see the White House off in the distance.  We told the boys that the Washington Monument was the tallest of the monuments and I think they were a bit confused because they often referred to it as the world’s tallest building (not quite) or W would refer to it sarcastically as the tiny building.  Anyway, from there we walked to the World War II Memorial.  The boys really enjoyed sitting along the edge of the pond and putting their feet in the water (which the signs indicated was acceptable).  And then it was off to the Lincoln Memorial.  I wasn’t sure how the boys would handle all the steps, but they saw it as a challenge and loved it.  Though admittedly, I was afraid they were going to fall off a ledge once we made it up.  At this point, the boys were hungry so we grabbed lunch and headed back to my aunt’s house.

Monday was my birthday – and consequently my favorite day in Maryland. 😊  In all the summers we’ve gone to Maryland, I’ve never celebrated my birthday there.  The morning was slow, which was perfect.  Late morning, A announced that he needed to run errands and he was taking the boys with him.  For a couple hours, I was able to read my book on the porch and respond to birthday messages.  I’m a person who needs quiet/alone time so with a house full of people, being able to quietly read for 2 hours was an amazing birthday gift.  The boys came back with grilled cheese and tomato soup – one of my very favorite lunches! (As I’m typing this, I’m realizing I sound incredibly boring – haha!!)  The boys played in the pool for a bit while my aunt prepared birthday cocktails and my uncle made my birthday dinner.  And he made…. drum roll… a taco bar!!  Complete with beef, chicken, carnitas, and every topping you could possibly imagine along with rice and beans.  It was so so yummy!!  After dinner, I blew out candles on a cake made to look like the beach and opened gifts.  It was such a fun birthday!!

Tuesday, we headed into Frederick, which has the cutest little downtown with shops and restaurants.  We had fun exploring and ate lunch at a pub.  We headed back to my aunt’s house for a bit and then we all headed to dinner at a local restaurant.  Dinner was great, but the boys had a lot of energy and I was definitely ready to return to the house.

Wednesday, we spent the morning in the pool and the afternoon was spent playing games.  The boys were really into games this trip and I enjoyed it too.  Some of their favorites included bingo, LCR, and Family Feud.  We also played Outburst.  If you have any game recommendations, drop them below – I’m hoping to begin a pizza and game night at home.  😊  Anyway, A and I ordered pizzas for everyone Wednesday night and we enjoyed eating outside by the pool.  In fact, most of our meals were eaten outside by the pool – such a minor thing, but one of my favorite things from the trip.

I loved this trip because we stayed busy, but nothing was on a schedule.  We could come and go as we pleased and everything just felt relaxed.  My aunt plans to move in a couple years so I’m sad that we only have a few more Maryland trips left.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Maryland Vacation Part 1

Back from vacation, back to work.

We had a really great trip to Maryland.  A set out driving on Monday – the same day he was officially released from his hospital admission.  Though really, this was more of a paperwork exercise because his picc line was removed on Friday and he had ceased antibiotic treatment.  He seemed to be feeling better and I know the admission was needed, but I realized that I really didn’t handle this admission well.  I was incredibly stressed and worried throughout A’s treatment.  Hospitals/admissions really get to me no matter how much I try to convince myself everything will be ok.  On the bright side, I didn’t cry for an entire day like I did during A’s last admission so progress?

Anyway, as I was saying, A left Monday and the boys and I left on Tuesday.  As usual, A drove and we flew.  The boys were great on the airplane and they were so excited to get to Maryland.  They really look forward to this trip every year.  As soon as we arrived at my aunt’s house, we ate a quick dinner and the boys couldn’t wait to jump in the pool.

Wednesday consisted of more of the same with my uncle cooking a delicious meal and more pool time.

Thursday, we headed to Bethany Beach, Delaware.  We’d visited Bethany Beach a couple years ago and loved it.  On the way, we stopped at a cute outdoor restaurant.  

Once we arrived in Delaware, we headed out to the beach for a bit and then grabbed dinner at a nearby restaurant.  I should also mention that our room wasn’t ready so A and I were given free drink vouchers for the bar – woohoo!

Friday was one of my favorite days.  After breakfast, we headed to the beach.  I was initially disappointed that it was overcast, but quickly realized this was ideal for my fair skinned red heads.  It wasn’t super hot and the boys had so much fun running in and out of the waves, building sandcastles, and searching for pieces of seashells.  We even spotted dolphins leaping off the shore and a whale!  It was amazing!!  We left our beach umbrella for a bit to grab lunch.  S got a giant scoop of vanilla custard, we shared French fries and chicken strips, and enjoyed eating while enjoying the salty ocean air.

Late afternoon, we packed up our towels and decided to take the trolley to a local pizza restaurant.  At first, I was a little annoyed by the number of stops along the trolley route – it was taking forever.  But I quickly realized the boys were loving it.  They got a chance to check out the different neighborhoods, garbage cans (still obsessed with all things related to garbage trucks), and they loved that many of the garages were underneath houses!  We stuffed our faces with yummy mozzarella sticks and pizza and took the trolley back to our hotel.

Saturday morning, we packed up, grabbed popsicles, and headed back to Maryland.  My uncle made manicotti and lasagna and we had fun playing bingo and Family Feud.  The boys got really into the Family Feud game – they loved guessing at the most popular responses. 

To be continued...