Sunday, November 30, 2008

Moving On Up.

I have a new blog address, and will no longer be posting here. Please go HERE and check it out. I'm doing a giveaway, too, so hopefully it will be worth your while. :)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Things I Hope to Never Forget | Precious Moments

Viola and I were joking that she has Precious Moments eyes.

Exhausted and an Update

Today the boys and I traveled the earth in search of an Advent wreath and calendar. I know you can make both, but I never think about these things until the last minute, hence my frenzied run around town today. I found both, and they are okay. I really wanted an Advent wreath like Grace's, but they are no longer available. (Great post and blog, by the way.) Mine looks like the traditional wreath, except it's flocked and has winter berries...and maybe an apple? I can't remember. I'll take pictures of it this Sunday so you can see it in action. Yes, you are that lucky; no need to pinch yourself. ;)

The Mister and I are will be leaving shortly to visit Isabella in the ICU. Thank you for your fantastic prayers and well wishes. Everyone is touched and moved and inspired. I, for one, am so grateful I have so many people I can turn to when I need something. It is such a comforting feeling. Now, on to Isabella. Are you ready for this? Three or so weeks ago she fell off the second step of a flight of stairs. I mean, not even a big fall. Just a whoops! She cried for ten seconds (you know, that cry where it hurts but they get over it fast?) and that was it. Hours later, she threw up once, and thinking back to the fall, Viola took her to the emergency room where she charmed everyone into thinking she had a stomach bug because of her easy going demeanor and steady eyes. False. Apparently she has had a slow bleed every since.

The bleed stopped sometime in the last two weeks, but there is a stubborn amount of blood that is still lingering. On top of that, fluid is building and causing pressure. They are allowing her to eat, and if she vomits, they recommend surgery to relieve the pressure in her head. If she doesn't, surgery is still a possibility if Sonny and Viola want it. They can also wait several months to see if the pressure goes down on it's own. The debate on whether to have surgery is because the complications are great. It is brain surgery on a 21 month old, after all.

I will update with more information as I have it, but thank you again for even caring! It's a great feeling, really. You know what else is great? Knowing I and my emetophobic compadres were right all along: barfing sucks and is good for nothing but trouble.

Monday, November 24, 2008


I've known Sonny since elementary school. We went to different high schools and lost touch--although we heard of each other's goings on through friends. Sonny met the Mister long before I did when they were both working in restaurants. It was while working as a bouncer in the bar portion of a restaurant that Sonny met his wife, Viola, who I knew from high school. Viola knew the Mister because she and her friends would go into T.G.I. Fridays, where he bartended, after they got off work.

We didn't officially all meet and become friends until Sonny called my dad who called the Mister who helped Sonny get a job at his company. Got that?

Sonny and Viola had there first set of twins 5 months after Mikey. Their second set of twins (yes, 2 sets of twins!) were born 11 days after Nico. We are decidedly outnumbered by children when we go out to eat, which is infrequent because we are all tired.

See that little one holding hands with Mr. Nico? That's Isabella. Not too long after this picture she got what everyone thought was a stomach bug. Except it kept coming back. She'd be fine for a few days, and then suddenly she'd start vomiting again. After a couple of days, she'd be fine again.

Three weeks and several tests later, nothing. Until today, when she had an MRI and doctors found she has a bleed in her brain and needed to be rushed to the emergency room. I don't know anything more than that, because that is all Sonny knew when he called. Bleed. Brain. Bad. Please pray for my little girl.

It's been an hour and a half, and my phone is silent.

Would you do me a favor? I told Sonny I would pray for Isabella and tell everyone I know to do the same. Hello, everyone. Please do say a little prayer for my honey-haired girl. And if you don't pray, we'll take warm wishes or positive thoughts, too. Just leave a little comment here on this post when you do so I can show Sonny and Viola how many people are rooting for Isabella.

Thank you.


Finishing touches: Children and Independence

Pretty soon most kids will want to do things on their own, and from that they achieve an incredible sense of accomplishment and pride. Whenever Mikey wants to do something on his own, like pick out his clothing, make his own snack, or buckle himself in his car seat, I usually let him. Sometimes I end up having to help him (like with the car seat buckle,) but I only jump in to help after he is done attempting it on his own and is frustrated enough to ask for help.

Then there are times when I can't possibly let him leave the house without the threat of a visit from social services. Like when he insists on brushing his hair.

This right here? This is what he calls perfection. He doesn't see the fact his hair is plastered flat from the water in the spray bottle only in the middle of his head. He is blind to the two cowlicks that stick out like devil horns. He doesn't see the rat's nest that is the back of his head.

All he knows is he did it by himself and he looks hottt. "Mama. Did you see how handsome I look?" So I let him brush his hair. But, I've also developed a strategy that allows him to wield the brush of independence without him leaving the house looking like a ragamuffin. Mikey brushes his own hair every morning. In his pajamas. Then, we get dressed for the day.

Now, as often happens when you are taking off pajamas and putting on shirts, his perfectly coiffed hair will get tousled. Bummer. That's when I come in and try to repair his work.

Mikey: "But, mama! I already brushed my hair. Remember how handsome I am?"

Jules: "Of course! But while we you were changing your hair went a little crazy. I'm just putting on the finishing touches."

So now, every morning I put on the "finishing touches." Is it duplicitous? Maybe. However, I doubt years from now Mikey will lament from his spot on the therapist's couch that I never let him leave the house with messy hair. The way I look at it, Mikey feels like he is doing something on his own and I don't look like a neglectful parent. Everyone is a winner. Especially me, because even with tornado hair, I still think he is a bowl of sugar.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Blog Crush {My Timing is Impeccable}

This week I was going to write a post about my crush on the blog, The Misadventures of Kelly and Kelly, but it seems she is taking a modified break to reevaluate the direction of her blog. Gah!

Regardless, do go through her archives. I am always happy to see her blog highlighted with a new post in my blog reader. Without fail, each week she provides me with at least one great link I would have never discovered and seems to be on the same mission I am: to find joy and peace in the minutia of life and to value the blessings we have in the present. She's giving me many great links with that goal in mind.

Which brings me to my request. Kelly, you can change whatever you like about your blog, but don't deny me those great links. You're shaving hours off my day by doing all the work for me. ;)


Friday, November 21, 2008

Favorite Moment | Books

I had a terrible week and the boys were trying my patience, so when I called the Mister yesterday and asked if he would like to meet us somewhere for lunch, he quickly agreed. Secretly, I think he was worried I would dust the boys' lunch with crushed Excedrin PMs if he didn't take us out for burgers and fries. Wise move, the Mister.

Mikey is still obsessed with dinosaurs. We go to the library weekly and bring home 3-4 books and videos, which he spends devouring the rest of the week. The idea of taking him to the library was mine after one exceptionally expensive trip to the bookstore. Prior to dino-mania, trips to the bookstore were not so frequent that they hindered our ability to buy food and diapers. But, it turns out, they are many, many books on dinosaurs--and Mikey wants all of them. So, perhaps, the Mister and I weren't thinking strategically when we decided to meet for lunch at our favorite outdoor '50s diner, which happens to sit across the street from Borders.

On our way to lunch I promised Mikey lunch and a trip to the park with daddy, which had him very excited. But when the rods and cones in his eyes feasted on that large, national bookstore with a cavernous children's section and an entire shelf devoted to dinosaurs, he could think of nothing else.

Jules: Mikey, eat your food before it gets cold.
Mikey: Oh, mom. I can't eat another bite.
Jules: Another bite? You haven't had your first bite, my friend.

And so it went. The Mister and I imploring Mikey to eat his food while he tried to convince us to take him to the bookstore.

Jules: Mikey, I'm serious. Eat your food.
Mikey: Mom, I can't! My tummy is telling me something. It's telling me I need to go to the bookstore.

What Mikey needs is to go into network marketing because he is a relentless salesman. When the Mister and I bought our first house, we made the mistake of allowing a water purifying salesman in the door. Three hours later, the Mister was forcibly pushing him out the door while the salesman yelled he could outsell the Mister any day of the week while he waved the checks of little old ladies as proof. Mikey is that guy. An hour into lunch, and he was still presenting to us the features and benefits of visiting the bookstore.

The Mister: Mikey, we said no. We're going to the library this weekend. If you want a book, maybe you should ask Santa.
Mikey: Well, actually, the bookstore is a really good idea.
The Mister: Mikey, we said NO.
Mikey: Well, I think when we get there you will think it's great.

Finally, the Mister had enough of Mikey's sales presentation. He was going to put an end to this compaigning by hitting Mikey where it hurt: taking away the trip to the park. Mikey, like every little boy out there, loves the park. He loves climbing, running, jumping, swinging, and getting sand in his shoes. Me? I can leave the park. There are germs everywhere and I can't function when there is but one grain of sand in my shoe. The Mister loves the park, so he was confident he had the upper hand when he told Mikey, "Okay, buddy. I guess we won't go to the park. What's more fun? The park, or the bookstore?"

To which Mikey responded, "Oh, Dad, books are better than everything."