Friday, July 28, 2006

Day out with Thomas!

Today we went to spend a day out with Thomas the Tank Engine. It was less specatcular than I expected it to be. And, I think Jayden was less than impressed also. He was AWED by the life-sized Thomas engine that they had on the track, but the train ride was not as much fun as I think it should have or could have been. It just pulled us on the track backwards for 10-15 minutes, then turned around and pulled us back over the same path to the "depot". The "depot" was wet and muddy, and there were no pretty SODOR decorations to give the Thomas feel.

The exhibits were not wonderful either. There were no exhibits there that showed HOW trains worked or let the kids play with real train parts or stuff like that. The exhibits that they did have were face painting (which was free and for good reason); temporary tatoos (also free); a display of all the Thomas tracks and roads and train parts you could purchase inside the store (as long as supplies last); and a big inflated Thomas that you could look at and touch but it didn't DO anything. They had the Opera house filled with Thomas stuff that you could buy at full non-discounted prices. And yes, we bought. They had the food stations open with limited, over-priced, stomach-churning foods. And, yet, I fought off a bee who repeatedly dove in for a bite of my burger.

All in all, I was less than impressed. But, I am not a huge fan of the Thomas craze to begin with. The stories tell of unpleasant, competitive, snide, arrogant engines who each think they are better than the other. They are always fighting or complaining, and they get told they really useful if they bully to get "it" done faster or better. No...I don't like the underlying messages in the stories at all. Never-the-less, we had a good day. We did everything there was to do. I think the highlight of the day was the puppet show/magic act that was there because of the Thomas event, but not at all related to Thomas. Jayden got to participate and was totally enraptured by the magic. Definately the highlight!

Will I go again?.....Ask me next year. It depends on how into trains and Thomas the kids are.

Happy Birthday Jayden!

Yesterday was my baby boy's 3rd birthday! I can hardly believe that he has been with me for 3 years already, but then I can't remember at all what life was like before he got here. For as frustrated as I get with him on a daily basis, I love him to death! Seriously, I would KILL for that boy! I would mutilate, maim, dismember, castrate,.....WHOA!!!! Who am I kidding....I would protect that child (and his sister too) for all I am worth, but I am not the violent horror-monger that the previous sentence implies! or Am I? hmmmm.......

Anyway, yesterday was a ton of fun. I took the kids to Bonfante Gardens where we met up with Debbie and her son William. The boys had two TONS of fun running around the park together, going on the rides, chatting over hot dogs and ice cream, and enjoying the comraderie. I have some really great pictures that I will post later because they are stuck on my camera with a dead battery.

When we got home from the park yesterday, I though for sure Jayden would fall asleep in the car and be ready for a LOOOOOONG nap. I was SO wrong! He was totally wired by the present that William gave him (a ripcord Lightning McQueen) that he was running around the house in circles playing with the toy. I decided to try for a nap anyway. I told him he could take his car with him, but they both needed to rest....if he was playing with it, I would take it away. Within minutes of laying down, he was sound asleep!

Luckily, Jayden decided to nap nicely for a while, because Eliana didn't. Something she ate did NOT agree with her. She puked on herself in the car (not too much...she was just warming up). She puked all over me (and I mean all over) 3 more times since we came in the house; she got my dad once; and she nailed Dave's pillow (we were trying to rest) but I took the pillowcase off it fast enough that it didn't soak through. Poor little girl! She was miserable for a good couple of hours. But, by dinnertime, she was ready to eat a little something. She was good for the rest of the night.

Grandma Tess and Brian came over for cake after dinner. Mom made a yummy white cake with chocolate frosting (homemade cake is the most important birthday present--it shows you care enough to take the time). Tess is going to get Jayden a subscription to Scholastic Books for his birthday. Dave and I decided he had too many toys and he wasn't going to get more....Grandma and Papa got him a HUGE sandbox and Uncle Jeff got him a HotWheels truck that carries cars and some cars to go with it. So much for the "no toys" thing!

All in all, Jayden had a great birthday!

Sunday, July 23, 2006

I'm a Cheese Pizza too!

Cheese Pizza

Traditional and comforting.
You focus on living a quality life.
You're not easily impressed with novelty.
Yet, you easily impress others.
What's Your Pizza Personality?

Got the above link from Julie. We are both Cheese pizzas. I wonder how they determine that and if being a cheese pizza is good or bad.....

But here is something interesting...not sure about the truthfulness of it all, but...

Your Birthdate: September 9

You are a born idealist, with more pet causes than you can count.
You prefer be around others, both when working and while relaxing.
Generous and giving, you believe you can change the world one person at a time.
You're open minded and tolerant. People feel like they can tell you anything.

Your strength: Your go-with-the-flow flexibility

Your weakness: Your flair for the over dramatic

Your power color: Pine green

Your power symbol: Circle

Your power month: September

Saturday, July 22, 2006


We had a great day! We went to the SF Zoo. Our thoughts on this trip were goes:
1) Beat the heat! It has been so friggin' hot here, we figured San Francisco had to be cooler--especially near the water! We were right. It was still hot, but not HOT.

2) We needed a family day. Just the four of us to spend some time together. It would make for a nice outing. Well, indeed, we had a great time!

3) It's a practice run for our trip down south. We want to take the kids to the San Diego Zoo and to Sea World. We are now convinced that the kids can handle it and we can handle them there. So, I guess the trip is definately on.

We saw giraffes, gorillas, chimps, lions, tigers, and bears (OH MY) and a multitude of birds. We didn't get to see it all because believe it or not, the day went by way faster than expected! But, we decided on the way out we were going to upgrade our tickets to a full membership. That way we can go back again and again!

Our last stop in the zoo was the playground area. We ran into Debbie, Walter and William there. SURPRISE! That is the second time I ran into Debbie this week! She was at the library on Thursday too! While the boys played, the men chatted, we women chatted and the baby fell asleep! We hung around until they kicked us out of the park (the zoo closes at 5pm). So, we decided to continue our visit over a nice calm, quiet dinner at Fuddrucker's! Ok...if you've never been's Johnny Rocket's meets Chuck E Cheese! OMG it was not the calm quiet dinner we thought we were getting into! What a crazy place! But, the food was good, the company was great, and the kids got well worn out!

Me...I had a great day! If only every day could be just this good! (HEY--isn't that a country song?)

Friday, July 21, 2006

Eliana Piranha!

Eliana is now getting a tooth! For real! No joke! There is an actual, real live, growing, cutting, sharp-as-hell tooth protruding from her tiny little precious, pink gums! Yep, she bit me with the darn thing, too!

We are going to have to go get pictures taken again this week because they will be the last ones to portray my adorable little baby with her great, big, toothless smile! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! MY BABIES ARE GROWING UP TOO FAST! WWWWWWWWWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH! :(


Feeling better today. Thanks for the chat last night, D. Much appreciated.

Thursday, July 20, 2006


Well, potty training is going well. We are having daily "accidents" but I don't think anything really unusual. Our area of difficulty is particularly the poop. I suspect we are typical in this problem.

In other news, I'm sad. I feel alone, friendless, unimportant, uninteresting, and ....well...sad.

Sunday, July 16, 2006


HE DID IT!!!!!! He went to the potty and POOPED all by himself! We now have both the initiative and the success! YAY!!!! With a few more days of practice and praise he may make it through the day with NO accidents at all! Super exciting!

Friday, July 14, 2006


At long last, Jayden showed his first successful initiative today. He actually came in from playing outside to go potty on his own. AND, he made it to the potty without accident! YAY! Now, I know that mostly noone is reading this, but it makes me feel good to say that I think we are finally getting somewhere. The book said, "...less than a day." It now feels like, "...a few weeks." But, the good news is, it seems to be working some.

I didn't want to be training Dave and me to rush Jayden to the toilet every hour so he can pee. Instead, I wanted to train Jayden to recognize the need to go and get to the potty on time. I think a few more days of intense practice and he will be there.

In other news, Eliana went to HER first playdate today. We went to a playdate with Las Madres '05 just for Eliana. Jayden was good there. He played with the baby toys without complaint. We didn't spend a lot of time there, which was good, so he didn't have time to get into too much trouble. The daughter of our hostess has the name of Jaiden. I guess I am starting to see how spelling the name with an i or dropping the e makes it seem feminine. In fact, I can imagine that I might give my daughter that name if I hadn't first had a son.

Given my new view on this, I have a little prayer. God, may my mind be open to new ideas; may my words be soothing to others; may my actions be mitzvot.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Potty Training--Day 5

Yesterday seemed like it would be the leap to success that I was hoping for. Today, I was proven wrong. With just 10 minutes of playing to himself, Jayden managed to waste a whole day of observing by pooping in his pants. I have been watching him like a hawk hoping to encourage him to poop in the toilet. I missed it by [-----that----] much. The rest of the day has been totally accident free. Now...if only that pooping could get under control.......

Potty Training--Day 4

"MOMMY!!!! THE POOPIES ARE COMING!", he cried as he hobbles down the stairs trying not to mess his pants.

"Hurry to the let me help you", the mommy said calmly, trying to bury the excitement of child-initiated pottying as well as the prospect of not cleaning the poop out of training pants! YAY!

With a terribly worried face, the tot sits upon the pot concerned about how the pooping will turn out. Mom sits idly by with a relaxed countenance for her young son to focus his attentions upon. They wait. The splash! Inner cheers are resounding in their heads. Neither mom nor son could contain the smiles and elation that came from that one small doody in the toilet. When the child's face broke out in a full-on grin, the cheering became external and they shared a hoot together!

With the wiping and cleaning of the butt finished and the restoration of the facility to adult-sized usefulness, the kinfolk shared in hugs and kisses and the "I DID IT" dance around the house! Phone calls to Daddy and Grandma commenced. Lunch was prepared.

The tally for the day---misses 3, on-times 5. Well done!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Potty Training--Day 3

Day 3 is off to a rough start. We had an accident first thing this morning because "we" were too busy watching TV in bed with sleeping Daddy. After breakfast, I took Jayden to the potty for a successful attempt. Then we had another accident after trying very hard. He pooped in his pants. I saw him trying to go, but Dave was locked in the bathroom with Jayden's seat. I rushed Jayden to another bathroom, but by then it was way too late. I guess we will have to wait until tomorrow for another attempt at pooping success.

Well...yes, we got off to a rough start today, but Jayden is doing great keeping his pants dry so far. He is napping in his big boy underwear and as of yet, they are still dry. I am being blessed by God right now for my patience. Both kids are blessedly sleeping at the same time! WA-HOO!! More later.

NEW UPDATE!! Jayden showed initiative! It is just after dinner and he ran to the bathroom all by himself without speaking a word. I was nursing Ellie or else I would have taken him there myself, but I am glad I didn't. I love the fact that he tried to do it himself. On the downside, he didn't get there in time, but on the upside, HE WENT BY HIMSELF!!!

We're on our way! YAYAYAYAYAYAYAY

Monday, July 10, 2006

Potty Training--Day 2

YAY!! We had a great day! When Jayden first got up this morning, he was wearing disposable training pants that looked as if they were holding in some liquid-turned-gel. But, he got to the potty and peed like a champ right away. Ok...Yes...I instructed him to pee in the potty and he followed my instruction. He is still not going willingly. This here is the key to our problems. I don't know the motivator we need to get this down well. But, anyway....

We went to Sit-and-play this morning after getting our change of clothes and extra training pants and the potty seat and...and...and...I felt like I was moving in rather than going for a 3 hour visit! Anyway, I intended to get Jayden familiar with the potty there right away, but stupidly, I lapsed in time just about 15 minutes too long and with a humongous poop, he messed his pants! We ran to the potty (of course, it's too late by then) and cleaned up and discussed how disappointed I was in his messy pants. After that, he has had clean and dry pants ALL DAY! He even kept dry during his nap! YIPPEE!!!

Poor Eliana has got to be feeling left out by now. I haven't given her nearly the attention she is used to since every minute is devoted to helping Jayden learn to keep his pants dry. Oh well...she will have her turn too! :)

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Potty Training--Day 1

Unlike my marathon training day 1, I intend to keep up with the potty training. But, today felt like a marathon day! We spent the ENTIRE day working on the potty. Jayden is quite capable of taking himself to the toilet, fixing up his gear, lowering his underpants, and sitting himself on the potty. He is also quite capable of peeing and pooping (and knowing when he wants to poop) and cleaning up his pottying gear. So here is basically the run of the day...

Spend 3 hours working with Jayden on how to get to the potty, set himself up, get on, pee, get off, clean up and go back about his business. He peed in his pants twice and the potty once. No poop yet. But, he was practically falling asleep on the toilet at 1:30 so we diapered up and went to bed. His diaper was about as full as it could get when he woke up from his nap at 4. ( a long one today...this learning business is exhausting!) But, we pottied and back into trainers. There was a lot of running around and playing while we checked for dryness. The minute he slipped under the table, though, Dave was after him to get out....we didn't want a pooping accident! Well....we caught him just in time to drag him to the potty and get that poopy in the toilet! YIPEE!! Our first day and we get pee-pee and poopies in the potty!

With only one more accident after dinner (but he tried) and a few more pee-pee attempts at the toilet, we can write today off as successful. Potty-trained...not yet. But, I think we are on the way. Hopefully, it will be as good as gold by the end of the week. He was pretty upset when he got his CARS underwear all wet. He got the poopies on his Mater undies and his after dinner accident got McQueen pretty wet. But, through the wash they go and tomorrow is another day! I hope the pile-up tomorrow is smaller than today. We went through about 5 pair of trainers and 3 pair of underwear today.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Fun in the Sun!

Sunshine; blue skies; warm, clear lake; soft breeze; and 23 of your closest family and friends! Yep...that was us this weekend! 4th of July is one of my 3 favorite holidays! (Halloween and Passover being the other 2). This is the holiday for the patriots! We drove up early Monday morning and were out on the water before noon. It wasn't long before we were suited up, sunblocked, and into the lake. Jayden was AWESOME in the water. He swam and swam all over the damn (place) and didn't once concern himself with what might be IN the water. He only took up his bug fetish when we were actually on the boat. Apparently, he took no notice of the bugs and fish IN the water. YAY!

Eliana wore her spankin' suit with the froggy on it and wooed everyone! She LOVED LOVED LOVED the water. It was hard to float with her because she wanted to splash and be IN the water but she really liked crawling on the raft. Unfortuately, we did not bring her floaty up with us and there was not a vest (or floatation device) small enough for her up there. But, she had a great time anyway. The only "tragedy" was when Ellie and I swam a bit far out to fetch a runaway floaty. I tried to hitch a ride back from the waverunner and lost my grip. This caused me to fall of the raft backwards thus pulling Ellie over with me. I think she was more scared than anything because almost as soon as we came up and I got her back on the raft, she panicked and dove in again after me! Dave came rushing to the rescue, but we were fine. I took her in after that though. Dave and I decided that either the baby or the adult needed to be vested (wearing a life vest) when in the water together to prevent this uh-oh from becoming a real tragedy. I also decided that I won't try to hitch a ride on the waverunner again with my bad left hand (still having shoulder issues on that side and it is getting way worse) unless it is just me. I don't mind toppling over in the water, but I don't want to topple Ellie.

The fireworks this year were WAY too awesome to describe. Not sure what they did different. Maybe it was that there were many fewer boats/people on the lake that made the difference. Usually the lake is wall to wall boats for the fireworks show. (that in itself is always something fun to see) But, the fireworks were able to reflect off the water this year because there were not as many people there. Perhaps because the marina changed ownership and they jacked up the prices of EVERYTHING. But, I digress...The finale was so cool that it looked almost like daylight for a second! Jayden loved it when I sang Happy Birthday to America. He asked me to sing it again and again. Then he told me it was his "dirt-day". (He can't quite get a grasp on the pronunciation.) So I sang one last time with Happy Birthday to Jayden and America and Kayleigh (since it was on the 3rd) and Brianna (since we celebrated her birthday earlier that day. He did not like my changing songs though. America the Beautiful was out! The boat behind us was singing "Oh Susanna" over and over and over and over again. I don't think they knew another song, but clearly they didn't know that it was a folk song not a patriotic song either. I was highly amused when the sheriff pulled up to them and asked to speak to the owner of the boat. I know it wasn't because of the singing, but I'd like to think it was! :)

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Happy Birthday, America!

Don't know why this picture is so dark. On Dave's computer it looked great! But anyway, here a snapshot of Eliana in her little froggy bathing suit and matching hat.

Wanted to post a couple of other pics too, but blogger is being difficult again.

We are off to the boat tomorrow. It will be Eliana's first trip! Hope all is well and everyone has a great 4th of July! Happy Birthday, America!

Also, a very happy birthday to Kayleigh! :)