Friday, September 23, 2011

Success!

Potty training has turned a corner in a big way. I had serious doubts days 2 and 3 that this method was going to work for Tate. I wondered if he was old enough to tell us before he needed to go or if he could even recognize it himself. I was starting to feel panicked and trapped and also covered in urine. Now, a couple days later, he's been dry and clean for two days and even made it through the night last night without an accident!
We take him to the potty more often now, but he's also informed us 4 or 5 times that he needed to go and hasn't had a single accident in a two days. So either this method really is magic, or Tate's just brilliant. Or perhaps both! HA! I'm so excited for him! He's so proud of himself too. He gets it. He's happy and knows he's doing it right. It's so sweet. I'm certain he will still have accidents, but the fact that he really wants to keep his pants dry means that they will be less frequent (hopefully) and that is so awesome. Just plain awesome. I'm so proud of him.
It was a very rough few days because that method is intense and I was really tired. But now it's better and I'm glad it's over with! Way to go kiddo!
In other news, Glenn and I are going to a concert tonight. On a date. Tate is staying with a sitter for the first time. We've left him with other couples we're friends with who have kiddos of their own but this will be his first time with a sitter. One of my little beehives. I'm a little nervous...okay, I'm a lot nervous...but I've stressed about it all week long and I know I'm just being paranoid and I'm sure he'll be fine. And do you know what's better than going to see Matt Nathanson, Maroon 5 and Train? Going to see them for free!!! Glenn knows Matt and he's getting us tickets! I'm so excited. It's going to be a spectacular date night!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Smiles and deep breaths

Thanks so much for all the advice and encouragement. This is hard. I knew it would be. Now at the end of a relatively unsuccessful day 2...i'm a bit tired. I guess this is more for me to remember how it went and have it recorded for the next time around...and because this is sort of my journal substitute. But please feel free to throw in any advice you may have. By all means!
Yesterday was okay. I was really attentive. Lots of praise. Lots and lots of praise. As long as I caught him right at the beginning he could finish in the toilet, which I took to be a super good sign. He didn't ever tell me when he had to go. The only time he really said anything was when he was already soaked. But I figured that would come with time.
Today was harder. Many more accidents. Much more mess. One particularly bad time there was a trail from the toy room, down the hall, to the bathroom and still the bathroom was soaked. Walls, floor, toilet, cabinets. Everywhere. It was like a fire hose he couldn't shut off. Still keeping everything positive. Still doing absolutely nothing when he's awake but playing, reading, occasionally watching a show, and always asking him to tell me when he needs to go. Praising when he's dry. So excited when anything happens in the right place.
So in an effort to remember something positive from today, here's a pro/con list. Just so I remember that there were some pros.
Pros:
- Moments of hilarity. Like the above fire hose incident. Seriously, pee all over the walls. Sometimes it's so much and so frequent all I can do is laugh.
- Moments of snuggling. He was very willing to climb in my lap, lean against my shoulder, and read books or just sit with me and talk about his toys today. Those moments were wonderful.
- Playing and staying really close all day means catching so many funny things he says. Constantly writing down quotes and laughing at my cute boy.
- He took a nap. He wouldn't yesterday but I was so glad for the little break today. It was really a little miracle considering there was an AC guy and a plumber here right around nap time and he still fell asleep.
-the AC is fixed. Everything should be fixed now and should be covered by our home warranty. That is great news!
- Glenn is in town and he's not terribly busy at work this week which means he's home at a decent hour. We're both so glad to see him when he walks in the door. A much needed break and re-surge of positivity and encouragement.
- Our one big success of the day was that he woke up from his nap dry. One less time to change the sheets and I was so so proud.

Cons:
- So. Much. Mess.
- Saying the same phrases over and over and over. Poor Tate's stopped listening to me. Stopped responding to my questions all together. Like he's learned to tune out the things he's bored with hearing.
- Tate has yet to tell us that he has to go before he's gone. It's either we're catching him as he's just starting and we run him to the bathroom, or he's just soaking himself and staring down in silence unable to stop or just uninterested in stopping.

We're sticking with it. I have not cleaned up this much and stuck with it for 2 days to just give up. He will get it right? He will figure it out and start telling us BEFORE it happens eventually, right?
I definitely had some unrealistic expectations about how fast it would happen. So now I'm starting to re-arrange my plans for my next week. Visiting teaching should probably be done this weekend when Glenn's home so I don't have to bring Tate. Should I have the YW presidency meeting here so I don't have to worry about him having accidents at their home? Because unless something drastic changes, that will happen. More than once.
Am I going to be able to leave the house any time soon without a feeling of panic? Glenn's going to be out of town next week for a while. If it's several days like this alone not being able to leave, clean, cook, check my email, read a book....I might lose it.
It's okay. One bad day. At least there are several pros to be found. I'll focus on those tomorrow. It'll happen.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Wet

Sunday morning Glenn discovered a wet patch in our ceiling. He investigated in the attic and discovered a leak in some part of our AC unit. He stayed home from church while an AC guy came to look at it and they thought they had the problem figured out. Glenn had a friend come over last night with a saw to remove a piece of plywood so we could get fans in to dry the right area of the ceiling and then a repair man came today to fix what they thought was the problem. Awesome. Problem solved. AC back on. Just need to get it dried out and find a ladder tall enough to get up to paint the ceiling. Easy.
Glenn went up this evening to have a look. Still leaking. Must be a different problem. Another night with the AC turned off to avoid more leakage. Another call to the home warranty people tomorrow to see when they can send someone to look at it. Luckily it should all be covered in the home warranty and we found the problem before our warranty expired. It's just inconvenient. And a bit warm. Also luckily, it hasn't been too hot the last couple days. Hopefully it will be completely fixed soon.
And while we're on the subject of things that are wet...potty training. I've been thinking about it for a while. Knowing it's something that needs to happen and something I would really like to be "finished" before little baby arrives...but Tate has been VERY resistant to the idea. We've been trying to warm him up to the idea for months. Talking about it, trying to run him to the potty when we know it's time, acting like it's a big exciting deal. He's been completely disinterested or worse. Once I knew he was starting to go and I ran with him to the bathroom, him screaming all the way, and it ended with me trying to pull his shorts down and him desperately holding them up and having a total freak out sobbing melt down. I just let it go for a while thinking it would surely be easier when he's "ready", right? There would surely come a time when the proposal of going on the potty wouldn't make him completely panic, right?
Well, tonight for FHE we went to Target intending to let him pick out some fun underpants and start the potty conversations again. He was really excited. So we decided to pick out a few motivation toys...and some stickers for a chart. He's thrilled. He's been talking about it all night. We let him try on his underpants when he got home and he said he wanted to try to go on the potty. No results, of course, but the fact that he sat on the thing without a single sob is a big deal! So...now that we have the gear and he's excited...I guess we're trying it...tomorrow.
I've read and re-read the three day potty training method that my cousin Amberly and then my sister-in-law Aub used to great success, and I do feel like it's sounds logical, feasible even, which for me and the subject of potty training is a big deal. I'm really nervous. Nervous about his emotional state. Nervous about how he'll react. Nervous about keeping him motivated when it stops being new and fun. This method is big on positive reinforcement. Diving into potty training without pull-ups, back-ups or crutches. It sounds perfect. I hope he's really ready. I'm excited that he seemed okay with it this evening. Hopefully that lasts! Wish us luck tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Happenings

We've had a busy couple of weeks and I seriously must start getting caught up. Labor day was fun. Of course it was fun, Glenn got to be home with us! We decided to brave a trip to the beach. The weather was supposed to be perfect heat-wise, but very windy. Tate put his little dump truck down and it took off down the beach by itself. He laughed so hard chasing it all the way down the beach. Once he caught it he kept trying to position it in the right direction so the wind would blow it away and he could chase it again.We made the most of our windy beach morning. Tate loved diggin in the sand and chasing the sea gulls. I loved soaking up the sun without it being 100+ degrees outside, and Glenn took a brief swim.
Then it was back to work for Glenn and I did a bunch of sewing and prep work for a big craft fair I did on Saturday. I had high expectations because we did really well at this same one last year. This time it didn't go as well but it was still okay. We made some money, just not as much as I was hoping for. It was just sort of an off day. The booths next to us didn't sell much either. But I think our things are super cute. I had a friend who painted some darling nursery art and she didn't sell a single painting. I felt so bad. We did some trading when we were through and I ended up with this darling airplane painting which will be so so cute in Tate's new room. While I was at the fair Glenn and Tate drove up to Austin so Glenn could go to the UT vs. BYU football game. He's been so looking forward to seeing his two schools go at it. Unfortunately, the game didn't quite live up to his expectations either (BYU lost and didn't play terribly well), but I think he's still really glad he got to go. While Glenn was at the game our good friend Janelle watched Tate for us. Tate had been talking about playing with Tori and Lizzy all week. He sure loves those girls. They went to a park and Tate took a header off a swing and broke the fall with his bottom lip. Two of his teeth went right through his lip and ended up being loose for a couple of days. Poor Janelle had to deal with all the blood and gore AND felt so bad...but really, he's a boy. This will, I'm sure not be the last of the bloody episodes he has and I just feel bad she had to deal with it. It was kinda sweet actually. He'd whimper when he put anything in his mouth and even asked us, "Will you kiss inside my mouth?" because he knew our kisses could fix whatever hurt. I love that. It looked pretty gross on Sunday but it already looks tons better and his teeth are tightening right up.
I spent Saturday night all by myself while the boys stayed with the Cluffs in Austin. It was so odd and so nice at the same time. The first time I've been by myself for that long since Tate was born. It was strange and so quiet. I really kicked back. I watched Reign Over Me on TV. Has anyone seen that movie? I'd seen it a long time ago. It's really good. Who knew that Adam Sandler could actually act? Wow. So many specials on 9/11. So many thoughts and memories to ponder all night and morning by myself. Turns out you have lots of time to ponder when it's completely quiet in the house all by yourself.
Sunday was an emotional day. Remembering where I was and what I felt 10 years ago. The panic, the ache for the victims and their families, the fear that nothing would ever be the same. We sang patriotic hymns at church which had me choking back tears. We live in such a blessed country. It was humbling to reflect on all the blessings that we have because we live here and all of the good that came from that awful tragedy. The things we suddenly had in common and how the pain we all shared made us stronger and better somehow ... I wish it had lasted longer. It was a good reminder to recommit myself to being a better citizen, a better neighbor, a better person.
This week has been busy too. Putting things back together after the craft fair. House needs to be cleaned. Tate needs some real play time. Dinner should be cooked again. It feels good to be back in the swing of things.
I started three new piano students last week. I'm very excited to be teaching and having students come to my house is just wonderful. All three students come on Friday afternoons when Glenn is home (when he's in town) to play with Tate and all three students are little boys. Wowsers do they have energy. They're all very different and very busy. I'm constantly trying to be interesting enough to keep their attention on me just for a few more minutes. It's an interesting glimpse into my future.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

New Hampshire in the Summertime

Once again it's been almost 2 weeks since the events I need to record took place. The wonderful week we spent in New Hampshire went so fast and the weeks since have just flown. The real reason for our summertime excursion was to be in attendance at the burial of Glenn's Grandpa Dan. It was a very nice little ceremony. One I wish I had been able to take more pictures of, but our little boy required some attention to keep very quiet. Glenn gave the dedicatory prayer, we had some time chatting with family I've only met once or twice, and a seafood dinner right next to the ocean, Tate got some love from his cousins. It was a full day. The rest of our trip we had had very few commitments at all. All Glenn wanted to do was go to one of the few lakes by his house every day. We didn't quite make it to a lake every day, but almost.
Tate has been enamored with the idea of fishing for quite some time but the poor kid had never been fishing. You see, while the lakes near our house do hold fish, they also hold snakes, turtles, and gators so Glenn told Tate that they were going to do some real fishing in a lake in New Hampshire. For weeks before our trip Tate was telling everyone from the check-out lady at the store, to my visiting teacher, that he was going to go fishing in a lake! He was in heaven. We took almost all the cousins to Elbow Pond one day and did some fishing off the dock. Tate's idea of fishing was smacking the end of the pole in the water over and over and over and saying loudly, "I'm fishing in a lake". Not the most conducive atmosphere for fish catching, but he was in heaven. When he didn't have a pole in hand he followed his cousins around saying, "Can I? Can I? Can I? Can I?" until it was his turn again. Patience was really hard to come by when fishing in a lake! We did manage to catch just one fish. The time spent at these beautiful ponds and lakes was so therapeutic. So green. So quiet and still. Cousin Chloe was a favorite on this trip. Tate just adored her. When Brendaen's family arrived at the house to visit he saw her and ran up to give her a hug yelling, "Chloe! Chloe! Chloe!" Another time she was crying for some reason and Tate hopped out of my lap and ran across the room saying, "I want to make her happy!" and gave her a big hug.


Then of course he had a sweet connection with Nelson, currently his only boy cousin. And lucky for Tate, Nelson is a great cousin. He's so patient and plays so sweetly with Tate. They were buddies. Tate just lit up when Nelson would give him a little attention. It was darling. He would follow Nelson around saying, "Nelthon. Nelthon. Hey Nelthon." One day the kids were watching a bit of super man and then they went outside to play. Nelson put on a cape and Tate followed him around saying, "Nelthon is thuperman! Mommy, Nelthon is thuperman!"Of course Glenn couldn't let the kids have all the fun.


Watching Tate play with his cousins and just adore them was probably my favorite part of this trip. He was in heaven with so many friends to play with. Everywhere we went he would tell people, "These are my friends! These are my cousins!" One afternoon I kept Tate home to take a nap, while the rest of the fam went on what was supposed to be a shortish hike. It ended up being over 4 hours of climbing and bushwacking through the woods. With a couple of very little kids in tow, it was...memorable for the group and I'm glad we stayed home and didn't add another toddler to the group. Here are the kiddos, exhausted at the top of the mountain.


"Green Eggs and Ham" was a favorite bed time story that week and Tate would follow cousins around all day asking, "Could you? Could you...?"



video


We played at lakes, went for gorgeous morning jogs in the misty woods, spent a bit of time picking berries at Gramma Heather's.



After a week of wide open, dark green, 80 degree weather, cool evenings, delicious food, and great company, Glenn and I got off the plane pretty unsatisfied with our surroundings here in Texas, in the middle of a terrible drought. I mean seriously, look at this Eden where we stayed for a week.This is Gregor and Amy's house. They were so sweet to host us again. We love staying with them and getting in late night talks, letting our kids play all day in their huge yard. It was just perfect. Every time I drive through Glenn's home town, the lyrics to Camelot just come into my mind. They have every time since I first went to visit before we were married. And as cheesy as it sounds, they really describe the feel of the place. It just seems so idylic, peaceful and perfect.


"A law was made a distant moon ago here.

July and August cannot be too hot.

And there's a legal limit to the snow here (well that part may not be true) in Camelot.

The winter is forbidden til December (also, I'm sure, a stretch).

And exits March the 2nd on the dot.

By order summer lingers through September in Camelot.

Camelot. I know it sounds a bit bizarre. But in Camelot, that's how conditions are.

The rain may never fall til after sundown.

By 8 the morning fog must disappear.

In short there's simply not a more congenial spot for happy ever aftering than here in Camelot."


Making our way home was less than perfect. There was a lost wallet, a mad dash to the airport and a missed flight. We got VERY lucky and had to wait in line so long at the airport to check in that they changed our flights to the next day for us and we didn't have to pay extra. That gave us time to spend another day with family and locate the missing wallet. It was crazy hectic but all worked out in the end.

Glenn has said several times since we got back how much he prefers visiting his home state in the summertime as opposed to the winter. We usually make it back for Thanksgiving but this was a great visit and we may need to make the summertime trip a tradition. Thanks for hosting us Makechnies. It got up to 108 this week in Houston. Wish we were still there!!!