Thursday, February 28, 2008
Today she played with Chelsea and Corey, and the whole class did play dough. She told me she made a snake, and then several other things I didn't quite understand, before it was time to collect the play dough.
I don't have a picture of her in her cute dress, because not long after we were home I turned around and she had unbuttoned her jumper. She wanted to change in to play clothes. we usually do this, but she was able to get out of her clothes herself and she was very happy. I sent her to her room to pick something out---this thrilled her even more. When she came back in she was dressed in a turtle neck (turned backwards), blue pants and beaming.
We plan to have more fun this evening as we make time (finally) to go out to dinner for my birthday.
I have included a picture she drew at school today of a butterfly. Look at the detail!!!!
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
I don't know what it was, I don't care, I just don't ever want to go through it again!!!
Gracie is fine, Garren is gaining strength, and I seem to be back to my normal self--whatever that is.
Poor Gracie missed school on Thursday, and Tensa's birthday party on Saturday. She was pretty upset about both of these, and I tried to explain that we had too many germs. Though we were feeling much better, we dared not go to church on Sunday. We would hate to pass this on to anyone else.
Gracie did go to school on Tuesday, and she had a good day. We even got out of the house on Monday for a little while. This is really the first evening I have had a the energy to sit down and blog, so I am catching up. I have posted a few pictures on my Photoblog as well, but I missed nearly a week.
Hang in there for many more updates from Strasburg, as I am back and raring to share my Gracie again!
Friday, February 22, 2008
Yes, we taught Gracie to share, and she has now shared this dread plague with both Daddy and Mommy. Mommy tended Daddy and Gracie, which is why this blog was dark for a few days. Now, we'll be nursing Mommy (and ourselves) through another 48 hours of joy...
For what its worth, the worst part of this thing (which I'm pretty sure I've got nailed down as norovirus or a variant thereof) is how it messes with your perception of time... it may last just 24 hours, but it feels like a whole week.
In the meantime, we'll remain in quarantine to keep this plauge from spreading elsewhere. Either that, or we'll call in a low-yield nuclear strike. Just to be safe.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
I thought I had better update, since Garren posted about Gracie's great night of terror. The sick princess is quite comfortable on the couch watching Noggin on TV, and the snow fall heavily outside.
I lined the couch with a sheet of course, and she has her coloring books and crayons and plenty of juice. So far everything is staying down. And by everything I mean only juice and half a Popsicle. I want to make sure that will remain on the inside before I let her have crackers.
The funny part is, she seems just fine. She is super sleepy and lays down a lot--but you would be too if you were up until 4:30 in the morning throwing up every 20 minutes. I finally fell asleep myself around 4:45am on the pallet I made right beside her in the floor. I slept on and off, waking up every time she rolled over, until 8:30 when Garren got up and we moved her in to our bed. She had soaked the pallet she was sleeping on in the living room floor. So, we know she isn't dehydrated. I got her dry clothes on and she fell right back to sleep in my bed...so did I. We slept until 10am, when she woke up and was back to her old self, going on and on about My Little Ponies. We stayed in the bed, and I drifted back off to sleep an hour later, when I woke up she too was sound asleep.
So, I have had a few hours sleep, and she is resting. And, in the meantime, I am working on the huge pile of soiled sheets and clothes.
She is well taken care of...like you were worried ;)
Tuesday night wasn't the longest of my life, but it was definitely in the top 5...
Wednesday was shaping up to be a long day, so I bailed out from work a little early to run some errands (nail+tire=day killer) and come home and see the girls. Gracie was in fine spirits, as was Barbara. All the long hours at work were going to pay off handsomely on Wednesday evening, as we made out twice monthly grocery shopping trip. Goodies were in store for all, and we were planning out who got what.
After dinner, we all played games together until bed time for Gracie. Goodnights were said, and all was well until 11 p.m., when Barbara and I were about to turn in.
That's when Gracie screamed.
I bolted for her room, followed by Barbara. We found Gracie sitting upright in bed, arms flayed out, shrieking, and covered in her dinner. There was also this weird popping noise when she wasn't screaming... turns out later she was grinding her teeth.
We pulled her out of bed and started to clean her up. Then she vomited again. And again. When she finally didn't have anything left to lose, she weakly asked, "Can I have my juicy?" She drank deeply, and it call came back up. We took away the juice and gave her wet wash cloth to suck on. She puked again anyway.
Lather, rinse, repeat, until we all wound up on a makeshift pallet in the living room, watching Noggin. I was ready to take my baby to the ER, until Barbara pointed out that she was still watching TV while throwing up... Apparently, she wasn't in as bad of shape as I'd thought.
We all settled in together for a long night. Around 2 a.m., the barfing settled into a 25 -minute pattern, and the intensity backed off. Poor Gracie was so sleepy that when she'd wake up to barf, she'd fall asleep the second I held her forehead. Many, many prayers were said.
Knowing what Wednesday looked like for me (and trust me, right now is the easiest part of the day I'm going to have) Barbara told me to rest while she stayed up with Gracie. Fortunately, she only threw up two more times, and both my girls managed to get some sleep.
As of now, I have no idea what the cause was. We shared the same diet all day, Gracie never ran a fever. Food poisoning and a stomach virus seem to be unlikely candidates.
Regardless, it looks like the worst is over. I'm going to shower, head to the store and get some things like pop ice for Gracie, get the first round of groceries and try to deal with that huge day I have to deal with. Richmond awaits on Thursday.
I'm so glad they're resting. I'm going to go do my stuff and get home as quickly as possible to take care of my baby girl and her super mommy.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Not that you would be surprised, but today's lesson at school only backs up what we already know: taking care of your Boo's teeth is very important. That's why we have been doing that for nearly 4 years now!
Sung to: "I've Been working on the railroad"
I've Been brushing with my toothbrush,
I've been Brushing with my toothbrush,
It's how I fight decay.
All my teeth are gonna sparkle,
How proud I will be.
Every time I want to smile, my
Teeth will Shine for me!
Always brush your teeth,
Every Single day.
Keep those cavities away!
Use your brush and paste,
Just the way you should,
Keep your smile a looking good!
Sung to: "Jingle Bells"
Brush your teeth,
Brush your teeth,
Give your teeth a treat.
Brush up and down and all around,
To keep them clean and neat!
Brush them once,
Brush them twice,
Brush three times a day.
Brush up and down and all around,
Keep cavities away!
I think the most fun activity was painting blue and purple paint with a tooth brush. I didn't see Gracie's, but I am sure it will come home Thursday after it dries for a few days. She told me they also learned a song about brushing teeth, and the story of the day was about a dentist.
Snack today was goldfish crackers, and Gracie played with blocks with Kendall again.
Oh, and Gracie's valentine's were in the kids cubbies when we dropped the tots off. Gracie didn't seem to notice--whew!
Monday, February 18, 2008
Little Emma has grown a great deal and was saying many phrases. She turned 18 months, and is on the move.
We had a lasagna lunch, the girls played with practically every one of Gracie's toys, and even did a little splashing in the bathroom sink for an impromptu "water time."
Saturday, February 16, 2008
I was far from excited about this milestone anyway. 30 meant another decade down the tube, and in my current state of mind I couldn't think of anything (except Gracie of course) that I had done that was meaningful in my 20's. Now, before you all jump on my obviously bad attitude, when you turned 30 I doubt that you didn't have any apprehensions about it--and if you aren't 30 yet, then really you have no idea how you might feel. To top things off, my baby turns 4 in a few weeks--so you add an aging mother watching her daughter grow up so fast, and you might have a few clues as to why I was dreading this "milestone." There are many more aspects of "regret," but I won't bore you with those.
Just, know that I appreciate the cards, comments, flowers, and gifts. It is nice to know that I have people in my life who care so much about me, and wanted to remember me on "my day."
And, don't jump all over Garren either. He is a good, although obtuse at times, husband. He and Gracie gave me cards in bed on my birthday morning, and at some point he will take me to Applebee's for dinner--he gave me a gift card to prove it. I found myself more depressed without at least a birthday cake and candles, but he had to work late, and I didn't ask for one.
Friday, February 15, 2008
She gives our lives meaning. Without her, there's just an empty silence.
She makes our lives wonderful. Every day with Barbara is a brighter, happier day full of hope.
We can never tell her how much we love her. We can only hope to show her every day of our lives together.
We love you with all our hearts!
Gracie and Daddy
Thursday, February 14, 2008
The biggest one came around 2:00pm from the UPS man. I wasn't expecting a package, but it wasn't for me anyway--it was for Gracie.
I grabbed the camera and videoed while she tried very hard to retrieve her gift. Gracie gives big thank yous to Mamaw & Papaw for Snowball. This would be the name she has given to her o-so-cuddly white Valentine bear. What a neat surprise for her, and so soft & squishy! She is taking a "nap" with her right now.
You can watch Gracie open the package by clicking here. And, a special thank you for all of the packing peanuts covering my kitchen floor ;) She digs in to the box throws them in the air and shouts "Happy Valentine's Day!"
Gracie also got a surprise from Grandma.
Grandma sent something for Gracie to open back with me the last time we visited. She got a Berenstain Bear's Valentine's book, a cute pink monkey purse, a Strawberry Shortcake puzzle, and crafts to do. Gracie had tons of fun opening this grab bag of gifts, and within minutes she was ready to make her Valentine's craft. So, I thank you Grandma for the glitter glue all over my kitchen table.
Another surprise came all the way from Tennessee today. Candice sent adorable valentines from her, Elliott & Lucie. She also included some My Little Pony stickers. Again, it didn't take long before Gracie was asking for paper and markers. She made a very pretty My Little Pony carousel with her stickers. So, I thank Candice for the marker on the blue play table. Thank goodness for Magic Erasers! ;)
Daddy and I didn't lose an opportunity to spoil Gracie either. We gave her Cinderella on DVD, a movie she has been begging for. She also got a My Little Pony valentine book, and Ratatouille view master reels.
Many, many thanks to everyone who remembered our little Valentine. Today has been so full of love, sugar, and gifts that I am waiting until after nap to let her see all of the Valentine's that were emailed to me. I put them on the Clifford sheets and put them in our box. I thought we should spread out the fun. Oh, and don't be alarmed by her face in the above pictures, she ate some dill pickles with our Valentine's brunch with Colette & Mallory--and they broke her out pretty badly. She is fine, she doesn't even feel it.
I am really hating that Gracie's valentine's were left out!!! I counted and hers and Adam's were the only ones missing. I know they will get them Tuesday, but I feel like she was left out in a way.
I thought it would be a neat way to keep her first school valentines by making a collage. The candy of course won't stick, but I am sure we will find a use for it. She also got pencils, erasers, and one mom even made each kid a mini tin mailbox beautifully decorated with their names--and then filled it with goodies. A few others also did the same as we did, and got the McDonald's coupons and gave one to each child.
I did sneak in around 10:30 today and dropped off the ice cream sandwiches and sprinkles. While I was there I helped give out the cards and treats each parent brought in, and I snapped quite a few pictures.
Gracie looked super cute in her dress, and she blended right in with nearly all of the other girls in pink or red.
These kids were super excited, and very wound up. While I was there, I don't think they went a single sentence without "x, sit down," "we don't hit!," "this is listening time, not talking time." Whew, how much patience these ladies have!
I didn't stay long, I didn't want to linger. I went back after another half hour and picked up a very happy Gracie. The day was a success, however, when I got her backpack out of the cubby--he valentines were still in there!! I didn't tell her, but I showed the teacher. She felt bad, and said it usually happens every year, they miss one. Apparently they told the kids to get their valentines and bring them to the table, and she said Gracie must have been playing or didn't hear her. They got to busy to check all the cubbies. Gracie's valentines will go out on Tuesday...in the meantime, what she doesn't know won't upset her.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
She is so excited about her Valentine's party. I just finished her dress and hair bow. Grandma sewed most of the dress, I just had to create pockets, sew them on, attach Velcro on the straps and hem. But, it is all done, and she has a Valentine hair bow to match.
All of her valentine's have been done and are also ready. I plan to bring the ice cream sandwiches with me around party time so they won't melt, and so I can snap some pictures! So, here's hoping they won't cancel schools!
And despite a migraine that I had ALL day, I did manage to bake and decorate 2 heart shaped cakes for tomorrow. I am attaching pictures, because I am pretty proud of my growing skill. We gave one to Colette, Tom & Mallory and the other is for us to celebrate our own Love Day at home.
My batteries are charging, and we are super excited tomorrow, so cross your fingers that the snow holds off until Thursday afternoon!
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Gracie braved the cold and had a warm fun day at school. She told me she and Kendall played blocks, they had cheeseballs for snack, and the story was about letters.
For craft time today she made a Valentine bag to collect her valentines at Thursday's party. We will have to work on those this afternoon, maybe after nap.
We didn't go straight home from school today. Daddy met us at the church and we voted in today's primary. You know our family motto "The family that votes together, makes Daddy happy!"
Gracie pushed the screen button with daddy on our town's only electronic machine. Despite our town's very small size, we actually had to wait in line. We were told they were short on volunteers and had to check each voter off on both the Republican and Democratic rolls. We actually waited 20 minutes, but the other people in line got a kick out of chatty Gracie. Whew, what a little chatter box!
We are home and warm now. And, Gracie has another birthday party invitation. This one is for Jackie, and its at The Little Gym. Hers is the Saturday before Gracie's birthday.
I know Gracie will have a blast at both parties, but secretly I am hoping there won't be a whole lot more. I am not inviting kids to Gracie's party and I don't want her to feel left out. Our apartment (and wallet) is just too small. When she gets bigger we will branch out more.
Oh, and I snapped a picture of the window display at the school. You can see Gracie's; hers is the one colored blue and green! Don't ask me. Click on the picture to blow it up.
Monday, February 11, 2008
She was so excited to try. I told her I laid her clothes out on her bed when she was ready to get dressed. Her eyes lit up. She went in her room and told me she was in the dress up room and I no one could see her. I heard a lot of grunting and couple of "oops, backwards!," but 5 or so minutes later she emerged from the dress up room looking like this.
You've got to love the collar. Plus, look at her socks, one is on backwards. But, I didn't say a word--she is so proud. I picked out a play dress and around the house socks to make things as easy as possible.
While I am proud of my big girl, I am not looking forward to the day she wants to pick out her own clothes. Right now she picks them out of her closet, but I pick them from the stores. There will come a day when she won't like the way I dress her anymore. I'll just think about that another day!
Many thanks to my thoughtful mother and father in law who sent me this great birthday present. It arrived today, and I wanted to wait to open it until Friday. But, when there is a child in the house, nothing stays closed. I knew she would drive me crazy all day wanting to open it!
As you can see it is a very nice silicone bake ware set. As most of you know I am really getting into cake decorating (see my cakes here, I am getting better all the time), and this makes things easier and more fun! If you haven't tried the silicone before, I urge you to. It makes pulling cakes and cupcakes out of the the pans so much easier. I haven't had anything stick in the cupcake one that I got a few months back. I am looking forward to trying these out as well. Plus, the space it will save!
Thank you so much Jack & Cheryl, I love it.
I swear she said this to me. Garren and I nearly busted a gut laughing so hard. Garren asked if she had played this game before, but I am positive she was just making things up in her head. I am the one who is always telling her "don't gross me out!" This is one for the books!
Sunday, February 10, 2008
I just found this cute Clifford Puppy Days printable Valentine online. I will print out several sheets to fill our pretty Valentine box (see story below). Send her a Valentine message in the comments and I will write it on one of them. She would love to have a box full of puppy valentines! And, thanks Candice and Grandma for sending the e-cards--she loved them!!!!
The video doesn't do the weather justice, but give a listen!
I haven't done much blogging in the later part of last week. I am fighting a nasty cold. I am feeling better, but I am still weak and dizzy and such. I hope it goes away quickly, we have too many things planned for this week.
What you missed (don't get too excited)
Wednesday, my friend Shannon had her second baby in Ohio. Claire Addison McCarthy. Very cute.
Thursday was a school day, and I think I gave you all of the details I was given.
Friday; Gracie and I play a game she learned at school "hearts a flutter." We cut out paper hearts and flew them in to the air via a table cloth. They use a sheet at school. We also made a Valentine's box for the house. I found this great idea that helps family members put in positive notes for each other the week before Valentine's Day, and then you empty the box over a family dinner. Gracie loved decorating the box, but mostly she has drawn pictures and tossed them in. So, I think we will wait a few years for this idea. But, I passed it on to my friend Amy who has 4 boys--maybe they can get a good family moment out of it! :)
Saturday: we went to the library and to Costco. Yeah, that was it. Then Daddy settled in for the Bud Shootout. He told Gracie that Aunt Heather was there. She got confused and kept looking for her, and later asked "which car is she in?" We had pizza brought in and we all tried to rest.
So, that wraps up our week. I think there will be more excitement this coming week. Gracie has her Valentine's Party at school, so we have valentines to make and I need to finish the dress Grandma started. So, lots of good stuff. Did I mention Valentine's is my FAVORITE holiday? If you want to send Gracie a Valentine E-card there are links on the left hand side of the page.
Thursday, February 07, 2008
Gracie had another heart-filled day at preschool today. She told me they made candy hearts. I saw the very gooey covered pink construction paper hearts laying out to dry. I thought to myself--better here than my house! It looked like they drizzled chocolate syrup on them.
Snack today was animal crackers, and Ms. Stephanie read Franklin's Valentines.
They played a very cute game called Hearts A Flutter. Gracie told me they used a sheet to send paper hearts flying. She got to bring one of those hearts home. These teachers are so creative!
I signed up for treats for the V-Day party next Thursday. I am bringing in ice cream sandwiches and valentines sprinkles to dip them in. Cute idea I think. Candice led me to the idea. She mentioned that she bought her kids ice cream in the cafeteria for one of the parties. I thought ice cream would be super fun. I figure the sandwiches can be cut in half or even thirds since they will have so many other goodies. And ice cream with sprinkles is just more fun!
Back to today; Gracie said she Kendall played with blocks today. Kendall apparently is the one little kid that she will play with. I wonder why she associates more with a boy than a girl? I only ask, because she only really been around girls: Mallory, Leelou, Mariah, Shyla, etc. Maybe he is shy like she is? It doesn't bother me, I am just curious. I mean she talks about the other girls when I pick her up, but this little boy (as far as I know) is the only one she really plays with. Hmmm.
Wednesday, February 06, 2008
Well, I did try it, and I am proud to say I have done a photo nearly everyday since January 1st. Now that I am in the habit, it is pretty fun.
I make an even bigger effort not to duplicate the picture I put on the blog. So, if you are a grandparent or anyone else who can't get enough of Gracie--check out my photo of the day project. (The link remains on the left hand side of this blog in case you forget the web address)
Tuesday, February 05, 2008
We of course made plans to take a walk after lunch, but then the rain came down. It can't seem to make up it's mind. I have had many days like that! I hate that we missed out on a walk, but I didn't want either of us to get wet. The sun is back out again, but it is nap time and she really needs one! Maybe we will have a pretty day tomorrow.
Gracie had a good day at school. She came home with a smiley thumb and her first birthday party invitation. Tinsa is having her 4th birthday party and her parents are inviting a company over that will help each child stuff and dress their own friend. Wow! There are 19 kids in the class and since Gracie's invite was in her backpack, I am thinking they had to have invited the whole class.
They made valentine heart fish for their window decorations, and then they talked about fish. Gracie said some kids did, and some didn't. Maddie, Madelyn, Kendall, Tanner, Cole, Brady and Mia all had fish. (She named these to me--no sympathy, she gets a fish when she can help take care of it!!)
Snack today was crackers and juice. Today's story was Valentine Mess. They sang a Valentine song as well. Not that it is a huge leap, but this month they are focusing on hearts, valentine's day and teeth (it's dental awareness month).
Garren just thinks she stopped growing for a minute, but I worry when she won't eat. If you know Gracie at all, she can put away a lot of food, so when she won't eat there is something wrong!
She is fighting a small cold, but I can' think of a single full meal she has eaten since Friday. Breakfast is her favorite meal of the day. I knew something wasn't right when she didn't eat the blueberry muffins I fixed her Saturday, and now she had been leaving most of her cereal.
While the refrigerator may feel a sigh of relief, I hope she goes back to her ravenous appetite soon!
Monday, February 04, 2008
With all I do everyday, even the times I get to blog or sit and watch Murder She Wrote aren't it. My favorite time of the day comes around 8:15 am.
I know that sounds unusual since if you know me, you know I am not a morning person. I dread the morning hours, but not since Gracie got her own room.
Around 8am I wake up to the little stomp of pajamaed feet. I smile with my eyes still closed and feel her crawl into the bed next to me. She snuggles in close and I lift the covers to keep her warm and as close to me as possible. She will kiss me on the cheek and I kiss her on the forehead. I feel her rustle around into the crook of my arm with her stuffed friend of the day and I can't go back to sleep for fear of missing a single second of our special time.
Sometimes I am lucky and she goes back to sleep and I get a good hour long reminder that she is still little and what it was like to hold my baby. But, usually I get ten to fifteen minutes; just enough to start my morning with that irreplaceable warm feeling.
I have woken up this same way nearly every morning since Gracie got out of her crib, and I can't bare to think about the day that she won't crawl into bed with me for a morning snuggle.
Daddy usually sleeps through her morning visits, and I kind of feel sorry for him. Just like everyday since she was born, she starts my day off on the right foot.
I hope each of you can find a special moment or two in your days with your children or grandchildren. You would be amazed at what it can do for your heart!
Sunday, February 03, 2008
Gracie was not ready for bed, but having a guest star for her bedtime stories was a help. Mallory was so sweet to read Gracie her bedtime stories tonight, and Gracie couldn't stop smiling.
We had a wonderful time with our neighbors as we gathered around the monstrosity to watch the Super Bowl.
We girls prepared the food, and the boys barely took a bathroom break from the living room as they continued to shout at the TV. We of course were rooting for the Manning brother. Yes, I know his name is Eli, but anything less than Peyton will always be "the other Manning" to me.
Garren fixed chicken on a stick, and Colette had very yummy fruit, and veggie pizza, cookies, and too much more. I fixed orange salad and put out chips and salsa and pigs in a blanket.
After (or maybe during) the snooze of a half time show, we pulled out a game for us girls to play. This was a hoot as I had found the game "Don't Wake The Daddy," on a thrift store trip yesterday. You have to push this little alarm clock and if you wake up the daddy he jumps up from his bed. We were screaming and laughing so hard!
It was a good night, and the boys had their fun as they nearly had heart attacks there in the end. I was glad that the Giants won, or it really would have been a long night!
We put Gracie to bed around 9, right after our game. And surprisingly enough, she slept through all of the fourth quarter commotion.
Saturday, February 02, 2008
Did your groundhog see his shadow? Ours did?
I took Gracie to a special day at the library this morning for Groundhog's day. She made lots of crafts and saw the puppets and later got as close as she could muster so I could snap a picture of her with the groundhog.
No surprise here that there will be 6 more weeks of winter. I wouldn't be surprised if it was longer than that. Here in NOVA, the snow falls until April!!!
Friday, February 01, 2008
*Arthur's Great Big Valentine-
*Be Mine, Be Mine, Sweet Valentine
*Queen Of Hearts
*The Ballad Of Valentine
*Love, Ruby Valentine
*Arthur's Great Big Valentine
*Fox In Love
*The Bookstore Valentine
*Will You Be My Valenswine?
*Village Full Of Valentines
Froggy's First Kiss
Arthur's First Kiss
The Littles Have A Happy Valentine's Day
Be My Valentine
A Royal Valentine
Very Best Friends (Pooh)
Dora Loves Boots
Blue's Valentine's Day
Clifford We Love You
Clifford's First Valentine's Day
*Rose Are Pink, Your Feet Really Stink
Silly Tilly's Valentine
The Secret Valentine
Grover, Messenger Of Love
Pooh's Valentine's Day
My Little Pony: Up, Up & Away
Berenstain Bears: Funny Valentine
It is super cold and the ice that we got last night doesn't look like it is going anywhere. They canceled school for today, but that didn't effect Gracie. She has had a pretty fun day. She slept in (thank goodness!!), and we invited Colette and Mallory over for a big breakfast.
She is down for a "nap" now, and tonight is family movie night--so the fun continues!