Thursday, December 09, 2010

Taco Info


Yates: "Mom, when I get bigger like you and Daddy I want to eat a taco."
Me: "OK. You can eat a taco any time. You don't have to wait until you get big."
Yates: "No, I do, because I want some spicy stuff on it."
Me: "You do?"
Yates: "Yes, not just cheese."
Me: "Ok, just let me know when you're ready."


Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Baby Is...

WALKING!
10 months and 1 day and Rex just took 4 steps! He's been standing without holding on alot and has been taking 1 step for about a week, but tonight was his best so far! Michael said that it must be the feet dangling behind his unzipped footed sleeper giving him a little extra balance. Of course we missed the four steps, but here's a little video. At least you can enjoy his outfit.

video

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Yates

"Mom, I saw a lawn mower man wipe snot on his shirt."
"What? Where?"
"Outside."
"Sick!"
"No, it was awe-ome. That's what mans do."

This comment was after Yates found the pretend ghost hiding behind my bathtub and needed me to spray it with ghost (hair) spray. It was also after Yates carried Rex from one room to the next by the throat, feet dangling. And after he exploded bubble gum toothpaste all over my face and clothes because it was too spicy. And after he came completely unglued because he wanted me to order him a mocha at Starbucks and after Mr. Too Spicy ate 3 adult sized bowls of actually spicy gumbo for lunch. He followed it all up with, "Mommy, take a video of me sitting in this chair." Talk about an action packed video... He is one hilarious full time boy and all of that was before noon. Whew!


video

Sunday, October 24, 2010

My Birthday

Today is my birthday. For my birthday I am collecting baby items for a dear friend, Robin Hancock, who is the founder and director of Acacia Tree in Uganda. She has always loved babies and now saves lives every day.

"We focus on giving loving care to abandoned, orphaned and severely malnourished children under 3 years old. Whenever possible, we try to help infants stay with their families by providing formula, bottles, clothing, etc. AcaciaTree will also provide a home for up to 10 babies who have no one to care for them." -AcaciaTree.com



I will be picking up baby items on Friday, Oct 29th, then delivering them to Robin's family in Fairfield on Saturday. If anyone has things I can pick up please let me know.


I asked for a list of items from Robin and here it is:
we have babies 0-3 years. Most of the kids are so malnourished when they arrive that they wear size 3-6 or 6-9 months no matter how old they are. We could use sleepers in that size. Boys & girls.
Here are a few other things:
-toys for 6-18 months
-FuzziBunz cloth diapers size Large (a dozen)
-bibs (for babies just starting to eat but with plastic backing to stop food soaking through!)
-toddler bibs with the pocket to catch food
-travel swing

Also, we are fundraising to pay for our rent a year in advance. Right now we are paying every three months and struggling a bit since its $2400 at a time. We'd love to pay for a year and not have to think about it until next year! So if people you know would like to get involved that would be a HUGE HUGE help to us! Our rent for a year is $9600. We'd love to have their contact info so I can send them my monthly email update too!!


If you don't have baby items you can give, you can make a donation here- http://www.zembakids.blogspot.com/

http://acaciatreeuganda.com/#/home

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

La Ti Da


Sometimes when I have so much to do, I get stuck. Right now I have so much to do and I am stuck. Since I'm stuck I'll just write a little.
Things have been so crazy. Seriously during the day I don't have a spare second. Nothing ever gets finished. I can't remember what I was doing or what I was about to do or why. Luckily Michael swoops in at the end of the day and does the dishes and helps bathe the dirty babies and gets them to bed. Total life saver. I wish the pace wasn't so frantic. I honestly try to maintain a calm peaceful atmosphere at home, but sometimes there is no use. At dinner this evening Michael, Rex and I dined to the ear drum splitting hysterical over tired wild animal lunatics that had invaded my children's bodies. We had a soccer game @ 5:30 on a school day and lets just say they were beyond coo coo. They both decided that they weren't hungry and decided to play out the last drops of energy they could muster at full throttle. I didn't realize how loud they could be left un-shushed. Michael did the close-the-eyes-with-a-slight-upward-head-tilt and said, "Pencil me in for later. We can talk then."
Our weekend was nuts. The highlight being that we had our family photos taken by Kelly Pollard. We love her! She is an amazing person that happens to take phenomenal photographs. Sometimes I get a really specific idea in my head and I did for these photos. I chose a new location and didn't even really have a chance to tell Kelly what I was wanting. But no surprise, she captured the exact feeling I was hoping for. The kids were beyond exhausted and didn't perform as well as they could have but the results were still so great. I got a phone call from a decorator friend today complimenting me on the photos and she used all of the buzz words I had in my head. You have no idea how that made my day. She totally got it. If she's the only one, I am happy.
http://www.lala-photography.com/blog/

This weekend Stella was eating pez out of a Jesse from Toy Story pez thing and she said, "Daddy how does this work?" Michael said, "You tilt her head back and... wait! What do you mean? I see you eating them. You know how it works." "No Daddy, I mean the construction and the gears! How does it wooooork?!?" I don't know if I have even seen a daddy beam like he did.

Corn Dogs at the Fair...

She honestly neeeever stops talking and I physically can't hear it all. Other people talk sometimes too. Last night she was going on and on and on about her new "hair salon" she was opening. She's never even stepped foot in a "hair salon". But anyway, everyone was going to get a job. "Mommy is going to help me design the hair. Daddy is going to be in charge of putting the sign up so people will know, you know, where we are and if we're there and stuff. Yates is going to cut the hair. Daddy can also brush the hair. Bop can comb the hair. There's not going to be a 'payer' though. Its free." Great. Free hair cuts. We will all work for you for free while you boss us all around. Sounds like every other day of my life. I mean its this non stop!


Mr Yates Grabham is a nut. He is super sneaky smart and has us all confused... just the way he wants it. He is a major tidy bowl and I hope its not going to fester into crazy lint roller guy or something. Now that I say that he does lint roll the couch for me... Today after picking him up from school he said, "Mommy can we wash our jeep?" (Referring to the toy escalade parked alongside my car in the garage) "Sure. How do you want to wash it?" Y: "I had a broom that went like this and it didn't get it." M: "So do you need a wash cloth?" (He carried a wet wash cloth around for about 4 hours yesterday cleaning... the floor, the wall, an army man the ottoman...) Y: "Yeah!!" M: "Ooooo-k" 30 minutes later... still at it.


And Rex. He is a different kind of dude. He looooves to throw balls and chase them over and over. He eats like nothing I've ever seen, ravenous. I mean in one sitting he will eat an applesauce cup (adult sized serving not baby), an adult yogurt, 10 grapes, 20 cheez-its, 4 chicken nuggets off someone elses plate, a cheese stick... whatever I can throw at him. I eventually just take him out of his hair chair. I think he'd sit and eat all day. Yesterday he had already had an applesauce, grapes, strawberries, goldfish, pasta and blue berries and he was screaming b/c he wanted Yates' peanut butter and jelly. I thought. Ok fine. I'll make you one. If you don't like it or have a reaction and have to be rushed to the ER I'll just eat it in the car. He ate the whoooole thing. Crust and all.


Saturday, October 16, 2010

?

Can I blog from my phone?


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, October 07, 2010

who are these people?



Yates and I were running into CVS yesterday to drop off a prescription. The drive through window was "broken" of course. So Yates' no shoes situation became an issue. I had forgotten that he didn't have shoes until he made his way to the car door to climb out...
Me: "Yates! You don't have any shoes! Oh well, come on. I'll just have to carry you."
Yates: "Ooooh maaaaan. Now I'm not going to be able to do any man stupf in there."
...really? I wonder what that was going to include...

Fancy Nancy Party, and thats Kelly Raspberry in the corner!!!

Stella was wearing super hot fuzzy footed pjs the other night and said, "Look these pjs have stoppers on the feet. Like tentacles, made out of scratch."
...what?... what?

"Gun Safety" in the house with Daddy...?

Yates: “Mommy, why are you putting your makeup on?”
Me: "Because it looks pretty."
Yates: "It doesn’t look pretty. It looks like you have yucky stupf all ober your face."
...thanks.

S and Y playing outside used to include them coming in and out every 30 seconds whining and tattling. I didn't realize playing outside needed a how to lesson. But it did. First I told them not to come in until I told them it was time. Then I locked the door. It sounds harsh, but it was and is now glorious. (and I don't have to lock the door anymore)

Stella: "Mom, is there any way we could have like breakfast for dinner, like pancakes and fruit and stuff?"
Me: "Well, we don’t have pancakes or fruit b/c I am going to the grocery store tomorrow, but we do have waffles, apple sauce and orange juice."
Stella: "Ok, fine. That will work as long as you’ll agree to letting me have syrup on the waffles. Will you agree to that?"
Me: "Yes, I will agree to that."
Stella: "OK. Great."
...this girl is all business.


Rex has been fighting sleep a little lately, so I was trying a technique I saw on Super Nanny about 10 thousand years ago. I was desperate to keep him quiet b/c I had just gotten Yates down for a much needed nap. So I laid down on the floor next to his crib. He was very amused by this and began launching toys at me. The first couple I thought were no big deal. But then I realized he was really throwing toys AT me on PURPOSE repeatedly. He would drop down in his crib rummage around and come up with something new... push, pull, drag it over the rail and bombs away.
... I seriously underestimated this little baby. He's probably thinking, duh, mother. I can totally strategize and execute all by myself. I'm 8 months old...

not good... but he loves it!

Mr. Food Foot. Take a bite, rub some on your foot, another bite, more on the foot, at every meal.
...Why? He has been a foot propper upper since day one. I guess I will look back at this and remember that he has always had to put his feet up on things, me, the highchair, hopefully not his desk at school.

Me: "Aaaaahhh!"
Stella: "What is it mom?"
Me: "We just hit a bird!"
Stella: "With what?
Me: "Our car."
Stella: "Where?"
Me: "On the windshield."
Stella: "Cool."
... what? cool? I don't think so.

Stella's school had Blessing of the Pets Day yesterday, St Francis Day. We took Sasha and Oscar to school and Sasha got an extra special blessing from Chaplain Rhonda. Hopefully she'll be 100% very soon.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

2 Stories...


just a swangin'

Story 1 - Sensitive...
On Yates first day of school, he cried and cried when I dropped him off. It was heart breaking. I hate that part of school. He stopped before I even got to the door and I knew he would be fine. The next day... Thursday, he walked in happily and started playing. It was great! I was so relieved that he was happy to be there and didn't have to go through the sad part.
Stella, Rex and I got back home and I immediately put Rex down for his morning nap. When I came downstairs, Stella said, "Mom, some lady called you." What? Where? When? I was totally confused. Apparently someone had called my cell phone and Stella answered it and "took the message." She has never answered my phone, therefore doesn't know what to say on a phone much less how to take a message. I kept asking Stella what she said and what "the lady" said and all she could tell me what that she (Stella) said, "what." Not very helpful. So I looked at my call history and it was Yates' school. Oh no... Thats the worst call. So I called them back and they informed me that Yates had thrown up in the classroom and that he was waiting for me to come get him in the office. Oh no... Ok. I called Michael on the off chance that he could run pick Yates up and he did! Yay!
So Yates walks in the door in his backup shirt from his bag and I asked him if he was feeling ok. He said he was feeling fine. "So what happened? Did you throw up?" "I did! A boy pooped in his pants and I barfed aaalll ober da place!" Oh... ok. So you smelled poop and threw up and had to have your daddy bring you home. oh, yates...
Needless to say, the boy is very sensitive to smells, to temperature, to bug bites, to noise. He interviews whoever is going potty and wants to know what they are doing in there to make sure its safe for him to breathe. He goes potty with a can of air freshener on his lap and sprays little squirts around the bathroom until he's finished. And no one is allowed in the bathroom while he is in there. He says, "Go in nere! I dont bant you to smawill it." Ok. If his food is 1 degree above cold, its way too hot and he will cry. If he walks outside of the house, he WILL get a bug bite. If a bulldozer, garbage truck, helicopter, airplane, dump truck, back hoe whatever is in a 2 mile radius of his ears, he perks up, opens his eyes wide and says, "sssshhhh, listen... I hear a _____." Sensitive... or super powers.

Yates "Bightyear"

Story 2, Ridiculous...
Several weeks ago, SYR and I went back to the pottery store to paint a gift for Pink and Bop's anniversary. As we were painting Troy Aikman and his daughter walked in. Let me just add that when/if I see a celebrity, I try to ignore them b/c I think I would be so annoyed with people looking at/talking to/bugging me all the time. So I just made sure I turned my back to him and his daughter so they could paint their pottery. I just really didn't want to be annoying. Too bad... So Yates decided he needed to go poop, bad, right now! Ok fine, we walk over to the bathroom. It is just a single door, single bathroom situation that opens up to the painting area, near a little sink you can use to wash your paint brushes. We start to go into the bathroom and STOP!!! There is a huuuuuuuuuuuuuuge disgusting roach right in the middle of the floor. I have issues and I can NOT go in there. I start to back out and Troy and his daughter have come to the sink area to clean up. I need a man to help me with this roach and lucky me, here is a man. I had made such a conscious effort to not bother him and here I go... "Excuse me. I hate to ask you this, but there is a huuuuuuge roach in there and I am petrifried. I need a man to go get it and you're the only one here..." How dumb does that sound? Dumb. He said, "uuuuuhhhh, yeah, i'll get it." He was thrilled let me tell you.
Now if you're thinking I need to get help with my fear of roaches, you're right. I do, but I do not want to. After the Troy Aikman incident, I had to have a neighbor come get one we had imported from our Florida trip. Its bad. I know it. But I'm fine with it. The poor dudes I rope into exterminating for me are the people who really get the short end of the stick. Thank you men who pick up bugs. Thank you Michael for realizing that I am not kidding about being scared of roaches... after 5 years of marriage, and for getting them for me.

sweaty girls after the game

Friday, September 17, 2010

"I'm going to color this background dark blue because princes and princesses usually start dancing around midnight, right mommy?" - SJ

"B-I-N-E-O, B-I-N-E-O, B-I-N-E-O and beeno buz his namo and old mac don-old had a parm... Thats a new song mommy." - Y



Sunday, September 12, 2010

During Rex's nap one day, Stella and Yates were playing way too loudly. After I had asked them over and over to be quiet, sure enough they woke Rex up. I was not happy, so I told them to go up there and tell him they were sorry for being too loud and waking him up. I really just needed a second to finish up whatever I was doing and didn't want Rex screaming. I went up to get him and this is what I found... perfect.

Yates is really coming out of his shell lately. If only I could get him to stop using "B"sounds in place of "Ws." "Bears my blado?" = Where's my water? We're working on it, he just doesn't want to do it right.

Train PJs - check, Bulldozer spoon - check, Airplane bowl - check, Wrench - check, 18 wheeler for your fruit - check

nothin' like climbing trees in your underwear and hanging out with your daddy

Stella's First Soccer Practice

Daddy coaching Rex on the sideline.

Friday, September 10, 2010

toot, toot.........toot

I will begin by saying that I have had a rough week. Threw a little fit this evening, cried a little bit, got it back together and was ready to do a big rant of a blog to just get it all off my chest. Then 20/20 came on with some sick little kids and straightened me right up. I got a little lesson in be happy, be thankful and quit whining. So, lucky you... no rant tonight.

Some of you may remember how pleasant I was during the home building process. (Not very) I got fed up with the builder and it got ugly. Anyway, I did get a wonderful house and home for my family. Yes it was very hard, yes it was all worth it and yes I would do it again. One of the many struggles I had while building the house was conveying my vision and having it carried out, specifically in the kitchen and master bath. It took lots and lots of arguing and redoing, but we did get everything right and I do love it.
A few months ago our builder called to see if we would mind him having a photographer over to take some pictures of our house to enter into the dallas home builder association design contest. Sure Why not. Which rooms? The kitchen (major battle #1) and the master bathroom (major battle #2). Of course those are the rooms. I find it very odd that the builder argued most every decision I made in those rooms, but now he thinks they are good enough to enter into a design contest. I also find it odd that he didn't design one square inch of either room, but... whatever. Long story, but guess what. Out of all of the new homes entered in Dallas, MY kitchen won FIRST PLACE!!! Amazing, surprising, very validating. After all of that drama the builder wins an award. I have to say it... thats my award. So toot toot. Thats me. I tooted my own horn.



The last toot is Rex! Holy Moly! I don't know what has gotten into him. He has been a handful and a half lately. I keep telling myself that its just hard while we are adjusting to our new back to school schedules, he is over tired, its a phase and/or any combination of those things. My precious little angel couldn't just be being bad.
Well he is now throwing full out fits if he is mildly unhappy. I understand a good fit now and then. But this (and others lately)... seem a little gratuitous. Today Yates wanted to go to chic-fil-a and Rex apparently did not. Yates played on the playground, Rex was fine. We sat down to eat and Rex flipped out. He screamed and thrashed and snorted throughout the entire meal. I couldn't even hold onto him b/c he was flailing around like a nut! I tried everything I could think of and was so embarrassed. I had to rush Yates through is nuggets and high tail it to the car. Put the toot in his car seat and I swear he faked sleep. He layed his head down and closed his eyes. I buckled Yates in and looked back at the little baby I was feeling sorry for b/c he must have been so sleepy to have been acting so terrible and he was smiling at me. What? Toot! If he's so smart he should just tell me that he doesn't want to go to chic-fil-a next time... save us and chic-fil-a a lot of nonsense.
He has also decided that when he is sleepy, he wants to nurse but he doesn't want the milk. So he will nurse, jerk away, spit, scream, repeat. I'm thinking, easy solution. Here's your pacifier. Nope, he screams louder b/c he really doesn't want the pacifier, he throws the pacifier, then tries to nurse, jerk away, spit, scream, repeat some more. Needless to say he's been having to soothe himself to sleep a little bit lately. Toot! As any good mommy should say, "Its just a phase."
Doesn't he just have that look in his eye?

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Today after school Stella was standing in the kitchen drawing at one of the bar stools... wearing a regular dress AND her Belle dress AND her huge tutu of course:

Me: "Stella, what are you drawing?"
Stella: "Its just an abstract with black."
Me: "Oh."

oh where, oh where has my little blog gone?

We have been so busy trying to squeeze out every last drop of summer that I haven't blogged in ages. Now, I have some serious catching up to do.
It will be easiest to recap in reverse order of events. The current situation is a mild back to school chaos. Our schedules are totally haywire and I am paralyzed by confusion trying to figure out a way to make it all work. Nap time and the strict carpool line are in a huge battle with each other right now. If Stella could just have a driver, our problems would be solved... or maybe she could just ride her Barbie bike back and forth. That would work too. The boys have to nap or we will all suffer. Finding a time for them to get long enough naps or ideally an uninterrupted nap is the problem. Where there's a will there's a way... right?
So big sister Stella is in real school! She started pre-k at Good Shepherd on August 25th. She is in the afternoon 1/2 day class every day and so far it is going really well. We have her school schedule down, its just the poor little brothers that aren't sorted out. So not fair. She has a cute little uniform and backpack and off she goes. Every day I ask her to tell me one thing she learned during school that day and I haven't gotten a good answer yet. Still waiting. Today she took her paints and paint brushes to show and tell. How cute!
Yates
The boys are doing great. Yates is loving some time without Stella's constant high energy and volume levels. For the first time in his life he is getting a chance to talk without being talked over or corrected. I am really happy for this time for and with him. Last night we were trying to get Stella to choose her favorite thing to take to show and tell and Yates interjected, "Hey, my favorite thing is 'hot cholly meeulk'." (What he calls chocolate milk and yes, he is addicted.)
Rex
Rex is crawling and can say "da-da." He is still so smiley and cute. He has completely learned a baby of the family technique - he is big time into fake crying. It is so silly. When Stella or Yates touch him in the face or head or even get too close to him he screams and cries. Pa-lease! The cute things he is doing is playing little games like trying to "get me" and he laughs hysterically if I hold him in the air tilt him forward. So funny.
Atlanta
Last weekend, we attended my cousin Tiffany's wedding in Atlanta with my parents. The Wednesday before we left, also the first day of school, Rex woke up with a 103+ fever. He was irritable and lethargic with the fever so I ran him to the doctor knowing we were flying to Atlanta Saturday morning. The doctor said he had a virus and we were fine to go. But poor Rex kept the fever and felt terrible the entire rest of the week and weekend. We just took turns holding him constantly so he could sleep everywhere we went. We were all so sore from so much big limp baby holding.
Rex was in a near coma for days, but I put him in the big boy carseat on the way to the doctor and he came to life...
The wedding was very nice and we are so happy for Tiffany and Rex (her new husband/ major name coincidence). We crammed so many things into the weekend, Latino street fair with tons of food and bouncy things for the kids (FUUUN!), Braves game (the boys officially started their baseball field tour and got their first baseball),
nice restaurant (Yates and Rex slept through an entire dinner) and after so much fun we almost missed the wedding... the whole reason we were there! We got into a huge argument over the directions and got all turned around and barely made it in time! Terrible! Tiffany looked beautiful, the bridesmaids dresses were fabulous and Tiffany's decor was really pretty. She had a fun photo booth that caught some really hilarious pictures.

California
We were in California with the whole Grabham family up until the first day of school. We stayed in a great house in an amazing location in Dana point. The house was the very last house on a huge cliff overlooking the ocean and bordered a nature preserve. The house amusingly had "wall to wall" carpet and the kids loooooved it! They ran and jumped and flipped and rolled and cartwheeled and did handstands and crawled and squirmed. Who knew?
How many Grabham men can you get on one beach?
We got to spend time with precious baby cousin Charlee and celebrate Anne's birthday with her. Michael and I got to do some art shopping and a little regular shopping and that was fun. We had a seriously exhausting hike to the beach from the house, but we went every day anyway. Loved it!
Stella is a beach girl through and through. We are always amazed at how sandy she gets. She leaves no portion of her body sand free. After the beach one day she was writing a list of words. She had a coloring book with some blank lines and she decided she needed to write a word on each line that went with a color. The first color was grey and the word she wrote was "PALKIN." It took me a minute to get it, but then I did... Oooohhh... pelican... of course... A few days later she was hiding golf balls around the house and drew a map in the carpet to help people find the hidden balls. What? Who draws maps when they're 4? She is too much.
She really fell asleep like this. Michael had to move an umbrella over her...
Yates had fun chasing the "toikeys" (seagulls), digging holes and moving sand.
Rex ate sand and ate more sand and ate more sand and ate more sand. It was so gross. He couldn't get enough and he had the diapers to prove it.
I am so glad they all like the beach. If we could only get them to carry their own gear... ugh!
Bye Bye Summer : (

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Duh...



SJ reading to Rex

This was a bit of our dinner conversation Thursday night:

Yates: "Mommy, where did I get my blue truck?"
Me: "Gigi and Gabby at Christmas."
Yates: "Oh... Where did I get my 'Light-ing Mic King tar'?"
Me: "Ummm, I don't remember."
Michael: "Target, Buddy. It came from Target."
Yates: "Oh... Mommy! This came from Tardet!"
Me: "Oh, ok, great."
Yates: "Mommy, Where did I get my 'darbage' man truck?"
Me: "Pink and Bop at Christmas."
Yates: "Oh......... Mommy, where did we get our people?"
Me: "Our people? What?"
Yates: "Yeah, like me, Dallah, Bex, Daddy, Sasha."
Stella: "God made the people and we 'buyed' the dogs!"


Some guys Michael works with parked a four wheeler on a trailer at our house for a few hours one day. Yates was in heaven. He climbed on it in the 100 degree blazing hot weather for an hour asking me what every button, fender, screw, knob, hinge, bolt, light, hose... did. At one point I pointed to the trailer and asked Yates if it indeed was a trailer since we had identified every other thing out there and he tilted his head to the side, squinted and said, "Yeah, it should be."

Rex = overachiever. He's trying so hard to crawl but first he had to master pushups.