Month: August 2012

If you put a Brittny in charge of food storage…

 - by Brittny

If you put a Brittny in charge of food storage…

She might start watching for sales.

If she starts watching for sales…

She’ll probably notice that pasta is on sale this week.

If she notices that pasta is on sale….

She’ll probably want to buy some.

She’ll start to buy some.

She might get carried away and purchase upwards of 50 packages.

When she gets home, since she had a long and traumatizing excursion to the store, she might be too tired to put the pasta in the basement right away.

So it will sit in bags outside the basement door.

If the pasta is sitting in bags outside the basement door, a Sam will probably discover them.

If a Sam discovers the pasta, he will inevitably bury his brother in the packages of pasta while his brother lays there placidly.

(Luckily, the end of this story doesn’t end that they destroy the pasta and we need to watch for it to go on sale again… yet :)

And the Day’s Winner Is…

 - by Brittny

So yesterday was an interesting day.  We’ll just start at the beginning and you can see what you think.

The end of the year is approaching and we as a primary presidency have been scrambling a little to get our primary program together.  So on Monday night I stayed up a little bit later getting the responses from our kids compiled so we could write our script during our meeting the next day.  It was a big task, and while it took a good chunk of time to get through, it actually wasn’t as bad as I’d thought.  It still meant that I didn’t get to bed until after 1am, and since Danny hasn’t been sleeping real well lately, I knew that I’d pay for my late night the next day, but it seemed worth it.

The next morning Sam woke up at his usual 7am and came in to wake me up.  Luckily he managed to wake me up without waking up Daniel so I was able to crawl out of bed and get downstairs while Daniel continued to snooze.  Lately our morning routine has been that I’ll come downstairs with Sam, get him a bowl of cereal and turn on PBS kids.  Then I go back to bed and get another hour or so of sleep.   I fully intended to do that on this morning as well, however I started working on getting more things arranged for our presidency meeting and ended up staying awake as well.

Around 9am Daniel woke up too and we started to get everyone ready for the day.  By 11:30am I was feeling really good about myself – I had laid out clothes for myself, fed everyone breakfast, dressed Sam, cleaned the kitchen, gotten our meeting agenda prepared, prepared the conducting sheet for Sunday, distributed a better format of our babysitting co-op calendar and done a review of our family budget!  I was definitely feeling like I was the winner of the day!

I hopped into the shower with Daniel while I let Sam watch some PBS Kids.  After showering we dressed, dried my hair and got it into curlers, all by 12:30!  For me to curl my hair on a weekday is an accomplishment in and of itself, even though it doesn’t take super long finding those extra 5 minutes to throw the curlers in isn’t as easy as it might seem.  We grabbed Eric and headed downstairs to have some lunch as a family.

As I started to make myself some leftover enchiladas Danny was starting to get a little fussy and (as usual) the only thing he wanted was to be nursed.  So I sat on the rocking chair and ate my enchilada while Danny nursed, trying to spill as little of my lunch on him as possible.  When I’d finished eating I started to print out my last few items for our presidency meeting (our rocking chair is placed where I have access to the computer).  Unfortunately I had run out of paper in the printer and even after adding more the computer and printer were being finicky about actually printing my documents.  Luckily Eric saved the day and got it all worked out.

Meanwhile Danny had fallen asleep so I went and laid him down in his bed.  I had been planning on taking him and Sam to our neighbor who was hosting co-op babysitting that day, however, since Danny was asleep and Eric was going to be home we agreed that I would leave him home.  If he awoke while I was gone Eric could take him down to our neighbor’s to join Sam.  My meeting was at 1pm and as it was already a little past that time I raced out the door with Sam, dropped him at co-op and got to our presidency meeting.

Our meeting was very productive and we got a pretty good start on our program script.  We wrapped up right at 3pm when I was supposed to be picking up Sam (luckily co-op and our meeting were both in our neighborhood, so I was right on schedule).  When I hopped out of the car to pick up Sam I couldn’t find the co-op tickets that I’d grabbed before I left.  Somehow between leaving home and our meeting they’d gotten lost.  I could have driven 5 houses down, picked up some tickets, and driven back to get Sam but I decided I didn’t want to make them wait any longer for me and I’d drop tickets off later.  When the door opened I was surprised to see that Daniel wasn’t there, although I was glad since that meant he was probably at home still sleeping and would be quite pleasant for the rest of the day.  I gathered my Sam and we headed home.

As I opened up the door I discovered that Daniel was not, in fact, still sleeping, but downstairs playing while his dad ate some lunch.  When Danny spotted us walking through the door he ran over to give a great big hug to… Sam!  Danny gives the best hugs, but it’s fairly rare that they are granted to his big brother.  I think Danny must have missed having Sam around for the half hour that he had been awake.  It was SO sweet to see that affection between those two boys.  They really are awesome brothers and I’m so glad to have them.

Sam was hungry so we fixed him a snack while I worked on some things on the computer.  Daniel has gotten into a stage where he LOVES to climb and get into things.  Especially if he can find the worst things to get into.  So naturally, while I was working on the computer I had to periodically take him off of the table/chairs/counters, deter him from climbing up and dismantling  or turning on our stove,  and calmly remove from his grip the knives he had procured from our knife block.  Never a dull moment with Danny around!  Finally I decided that since the day had over all been a success, Danny was getting antsy, Eric  wouldn’t be expecting an early dinner, and we’d been needing to do a grocery run since Thursday that I would round up the boys and head to the store.

It took a little while to get everyone ready, find shoes etc.  We made it out to the car and I realized that I needed to grab a few more things out of the house, including Sam’s baby doll – Tinkey -so we could avoid a meltdown.  So we got out the door probably around 4:30, still not too bad considering I was doing this with a preschooler and a toddler.  I plugged in my phone so that I could listen to my book during the drive.  We hadn’t even left the neighborhood when I realized that Sam was way too quiet, and he hadn’t yet had his nap for the day.  Crap, even the short drive to the store, if Sam was that tired  he’d be fast asleep before we reached the store.  So I insisted that he sing songs with me as we drove down the mountain.  He protested that if we sang loud songs then “we were going to wake him up”… but that was kind of the point.  There’s no way I could let him take a nap after 4pm if I wanted any chance of him going to sleep that night.

We made it to Smith’s without Sam falling asleep and I knew once he got out and walking around he’d be ok.  So we got into the store and found that they were unfortunately out of the shopping carts with the attached kiddie cars in the front. Sad, but not a big deal.  I grabbed a regular cart and Sam got a child sized cart.  I put Danny in my cart and Sam put Tinkey in his and we headed inside.  As we got inside Danny was getting squirmy so I went to buckle him in and discovered that the male end of the buckle was missing.  So I pretended that I was buckling Danny in by sticking the fabric part of the belt into the other end of the buckle, knowing it wouldn’t hold him, but that it might give me a few minutes of him being tricked into thinking he was stuck in the shopping cart before he’d insist on being carried.  Our shopping was fairly uneventful, Sam occasionally wandered into the aisles and got in other people’s way or rammed his cart into me or tried to put Starbursts into his cart, and Danny got tired of being in the cart and convinced me to take him out a few times to “help” me push the cart from my arms (note: this is in fact of negative helping value as it means I have to grapple with a toddler and push with one arm, in case you weren’t sure) and kept having to be re-seated in the cart as his climbing instincts told him that he MUST stand in the cart despite mom’s opinions to the contrary.

Finally we had gotten everything on our list and made it to the checkout.  As we loaded up the belt Danny wanted to be taken out of the cart but I insisted that he stay in the cart until we made it to the end.  I was nearly finished unloading my cart when I had a sinking realization – the other thing that I was supposed to grab from the house when I went in to get Tinkey, was my wallet.  I quickly rifled through my purse and realized that I had in fact made it all the way to the checkout line without my wallet.  I finished loading the groceries onto the belt and went to the front.  Danny was trying to get out again but I quickly re-seated him as I turned to the cashier to ask if they could put the groceries on hold while I ran out to my car to get my wallet.  As I was starting to tell her this I see Danny in the corner of my eye stand up in the cart and look over just in time to see that him lunge out of the cart and go head over heels right onto the hard floor.  He lands right in the middle of his forehead with a loud SMACK.  Horrified, I quickly pick him up and snuggle him to my chest while trying to assess the damage.  His nose is bleeding and he has a huge bump already forming in the middle of his forehead.  The cashier works quickly to procure some paper towels, sends her bagger off to get some ice, and her supervisor closes off the lane so we aren’t rushed while taking care of the situation.  Another checker comes over to help reassure me and tells me, in a very kind way, that I should I have had him buckled in – which I assure her I would have except that the buckle was broken.  Of course, that doesn’t make it any less my own fault, I could have gone back and searched for a cart that had a fixed buckle, but it didn’t seem like it was worth the effort at the time.  I feel awful, and hate the feeling that every person in that part of the store is now watching and judging me with my screaming, bleeding son who I should have done more to keep safe.

Danny's bump

This was the best picture we could get that shows the bump Danny ended up with. It’s not discolored so it’s a little hard to see, but if you look at his forehead you will notice that there’s a big round bump in the middle of it.

When I’ve finished assessing Daniel and have decided that – while he’s still crying and bleeding – he’s going to be just fine.  The bump is nasty looking and his nose is still bleeding, but just normal bloody nose.  It doesn’t help that he’s been congested so all the blood is mixed with copious amounts of snot.  The blood is all over and he doesn’t want to let me touch him to clean it up, and is instead wiping it on my arm and chest when I can’t catch him to wipe it off first.

I finally finish telling the cashier about my wallet situation.  She makes arrangements with her supervisor to have the groceries put on hold while I run out to the car to search for my wallet.  I’m fairly certain that I’ve left my wallet in my diaper bag from the day before, so I haul out my two boys – one still bleeding and crying, the other off in la-la land – out to our car to search.  As I go through the car I realize that I’ve taken my diaper bag into the house and it’s not in our car.  This never happens.  I am the world’s worst person at taking the diaper bag back into the house. Many times I’ll put it in the car for church on Sunday and the next Sunday when we’re getting ready for church – it’s still in the car.  So for me to have taken it in after a single outing is totally unheard of.  Unfortunately, this means that my wallet is sitting at home next to our rocking chair.  Shoot.  So I call Eric and have him text me the information for one of our credit cards on the off chance that they might be able to type in the information on their computer.

As we’re walking back in, Danny still whimpering and bleeding a little bit, Sam spots his old nursery leader who works in the Fred Myer inside our Smith’s.  Sister Hong is one of the world’s most wonderful people and she keeps a stash of candy and fruit snacks with her so that when she sees kids she knows at the store she can give them a treat (note: this is not WHY she is such a wonderful person, just one of the many examples).  So of course Sam has to stop and say hi.  I recount our story to Ming-tzong and she commiserates and gives fruit snacks to both of my boys.  She doesn’t know it, but she was the hero of the day – those fruit snacks were what finally helped Danny to calm down and be somewhat happy again.

We walked back to the checkstand and from there over to customer service where I was told for sure that they would need to see the actual card to be able to process the transaction – not surprising, but it had been worth a shot.  So I quickly text Eric to ask him to come down with a credit card.  The store manager comes over and has me fill out an accident report while we wait for Eric.  They offered to get Danny a drink or something, but the fruit snacks have been enough to settle him back down.  I do just want to note that the employees of the Smith’s were SO helpful, professional and kind through this whole ordeal.  I’ve been impressed with their friendly service since the first time I went to this store and yesterday’s experience was no exception.  Even though they could have berated me for being a terrible mother who doesn’t buckle her child in, or been frustrated with me for being the idiot that leaves their wallet at home, they were truly very kind and understanding and helpful – for which I was very grateful.  It made an awful situation just a little bit easier to deal with.

After the accident reports were finished we still had to wait a few minutes for Eric to arrive.  Finally our knight in shining armor arrives on his noble steed – or Eric in his helmet arrives on his scooter, the details are a little vague at this point :P  As he walks in he’s looking at the checkstands for us and finally sees us at the end of the aisle at customer service.  He still doesn’t know about Danny’s fall until he gets to us and I explain what happened.  At this point, despite the paper towels I have to clean him off, he has blood spattered across his face and there is some on my chest and arm – we probably look like we’ve just come from a murder.  Danny jumps into Eric’s arms and I think all of us are glad to see him with us again.  Eric pays for our groceries and I’m gratified to find out that once we put in our membership rewards number our total drops from $205 to $130 (pasta was on sale for $0.50/bag from its usual $1.50 so I had stocked up for our food storage).  A savings of $70 is a small consolation prize for what we went through, but better than nothing!

We go out to the car and get all the groceries packed up.  I’m grateful Eric was there to help load up the kids and groceries since I’m a little exhausted at this point, and it’s always easier managing the whole process with two people rather than one.  Finally we’re in the car and I’ve given Sam his donut that he earned for being relatively good at the store.  Sam doesn’t always get a donut on our shopping trips but we’d passed by the bakery case on our way into the store and he had asked for one.  I made the deal that if he was good we could maybe get one, knowing that if he didn’t see it again we’d probably escape without them.  Unfortunately my poor planning had made it so we ended up back by the bakery section right at the end of the excursion and since things had gone relatively well I couldn’t really refuse him.  I’m really grateful now that we had gotten the donut especially after everything else that we went through, it seems like a nice way to mediate the whole experience.

As I hop in the car I decide to listen to my book to help calm my nerves a little bit as we drive back home.  When we get about two minutes out of the parking lot I remember the reason I hadn’t listened on the way down – I’m supposed to be keeping Sam awake.  I look back at him but it’s already too late, Sam is totally passed out, donut in hand.  We get home and I lay him on the couch in hopes of a short nap, then I put the groceries away and start pulling out food for dinner.  It’s nearly 7pm at this point and Danny’s getting tired and hungry.  So we stop pulling out leftovers and sit down on the rocking chair and he nurses to sleep.

After putting Daniel in his bed I get Eric to come downstairs for dinner, we wake up Sam, eat dinner and watch some TV.  I’m of course a little worried about Danny after his big fall and a bit concerned that he might have a concussion, even though he’s been acting like his normal self, just tired at the end of a long day.  I’m grateful when he wakes up so we can examine him a bit more in the comfort of our own home.  He is just fine, his only souvenir from our adventure is a big lump on his head, but otherwise is no worse for the wear.

Finally it’s time for bedtime, I get Sam to bed, get some cleaning and work done, and finally around 11:30 I take Danny up to bed as well.  I had every intention of going back to my own bed after nursing him to sleep, but the next thing I knew I woke up from a nightmare in Daniel’s bed at 4am, guess the day wore me out too!

So, while the day started well, I’m going to say that yesterday’s winner was not in fact myself.  Luckily today and tomorrow are days that are devoid of any outside commitments or errands so I will happily stay locked up at home  with my two kids just cleaning and doing at-home things :)

By the way, if you read my personal blog as well and read this post about our adventure at the swimming pool, please don’t call CPS on me.  I promise most of our adventures have no accident reports and go off just fine.  We go to the pool and Wal-mart and Smiths and the park all the time without any major mishaps.  When they do happen I feel some catharsis by blogging about it, but I promise I’m a better blog than my blogs might make me seem!

Sam and the Plan of Salvation

 - by Brittny

The Creation of Adam by Michelangelo – picture courtesy of Wikipedia

A couple months back I emailed this story to myself so I could remember to post it later.  I guess it’s later now :)

One night I was reading scriptures with Sam and we were discussing 1 Nephi 2:25  – “Adam fell that men might be and men are that they might have joy.”  We had read that scripture the night before but Sam had gotten really fixated on it so we read it again and discussed the Creation and Fall.  When I discuss things like this with Sam I usually lead by asking him questions, even if I don’t think he knows the answer.  I like to make him think about things rather than just telling him about them.  Sam surprised me with how much he knew without me telling him!  He knew that Adam was the first man, and he was alone so he needed Eve and lots of other details. I wish I had written down more of the details that he knew (I think one was that Eve was made from Adam’s rib) but I was typing it up on my phone so I just wrote down the abbreviated version.

After we’d gone through a lot of the story Sam started pulling out his “why” questions (he is 3 years old after all, everything get’s a “why” :P )  “Why did Heavenly Father create Adam?  … Why does Heavenly Father love us? … Why are we Heavenly Father’s children?” etc.  I tried my best to give him good answers and not just say “because that’s the way it is” as tempting as it was.  I had used the reasoning that Heavenly Father loves us because we are his children because he had created us, so he asked – “Why did Heavenly Father create us?”  Uhm, good question Sam.  I couldn’t come up with a good answer right on the spot that didn’t just send us back in a circle so I decided to turn the question back on him.  His answer was “because we love our family.”  Translation – Heavenly Father created us because families are important, we love our families so Heavenly Father of course wanted to have us as children.  I was just floored by that sweet and insightful answer.  I don’t know that I would have understood that concept until I was a parent myself, so I was pleased that Sam could come up with that at such a young age.  Sam is such a smart kid and I definitely think we learn as much from him as he does from us!

Sam Perspectives

 - by Brittny

Apparently summer is a busy time to be a stay-at-home mom/freelance web developer, so blogging hasn’t been a high priority lately.  But I was about to post a few Sam quotes on Facebook and decided they would be better placed in a blog post.  So here are some of Sam’s perspectives on life lately –

Last night as I was reading scriptures with Sam we were talking about Korihor and got to the part where he had to go door to door to beg for food.  I realized this was probably something that didn’t really mean anything to Sam so I explained to him how we ought to work for the things that we have.  As part of the discussion I tried to explain to him how Daddy and Mommy work so that we have food in our house and a house to live in and all the things we have.  So I asked him what he thought we did for work.  He said, “Mom… does keyboarding and mousing.  And Dad… plays with his computer.”  I like that even though the things Eric and I do for work might seem very similar to Sam he had different (and apt!) descriptions for the differences :)

Also last night I was trying to convince Sam to go upstairs and pick out some pajamas so we could get him ready for bed.  He replied, “No, I want to do it like dad.”  Which was a fairly cryptic answer so we asked him how dad does it.  Sam said, “I want to sleep in my clothes like dad.”  For those of you who don’t know, Eric works from home about 75% of the time, so most days his clothes for the day are just basketball shorts and a t-shirt.  I had to explain to Sam that what he was requesting to do would actually be the opposite of what Eric does – Eric doesn’t sleep in his clothes, he works in his pajamas ;)

This last story I posted on Facebook earlier this week, but I think it’s worth preserving here.  I was putting Sam to bed on Monday and asked him what he thought of the Olympics.  He told me about what his favorite event, “they jumped and then grabbed their toes and flipped and turned and into the water like a rocketship!” It’s hard to get an exact quote since he was acting out a lot of it and showing me the pike position in his bed, but I thought he was pretty cute.  He gave Eric a similar explanation, complete with acting it out, when Eric came up to say good night to him.  Can you tell that we’d been watching synchronized diving?

I thought along with this post it would be appropriate to post one of Sam’s recent favorite music videos. He’s learned some of the lyrics and will randomly sing it sometimes, he’s a lot of fun :)