Monday, January 29, 2007

Thoroughly Attacked

At my neighbor friend's insistance, I attended the Body Attack class at my gym for the first time in a couple of months. I keep saying I'm going to get back into going everyday, but the most I've been able to do is a couple times a week on the aerobic machines. There always seems to be something going on here that keeps me from getting there a regular basis. Kids sick. Kids home. Babies napping. Pure laziness. You name it, it's been my excuse. No more, though. I'm making it a priority again. I was all pumped up to be at one of my favorite classes again this morning. The class began and was going really well and it felt like I hadn't missed a class. I was having a blast. And then half way through we began the running track and my body began screaming in protest. It wasn't so much fun anymore. I knew I was going to be in for it when I was already sore and the class wasn't even over yet. It's been a rough and painful afternoon. But you know what? I'm going back tomorrow anyway. I'm commited. And looking forward to it. But for now? I'm off to soak in a HOT bath.

Update at 8:45pm - Still unable to move. But still going back again tomorrow!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

St. Louis Getaway

As luck would have it, we did indeed make it to St. Louis this weekend. Ryan woke up Friday morning and was completely fine and wanted to go to school so I sent him. Guess it was just some freak fever. We left early on Saturday morning and arrived in St. Louis just in time for lunch.
* * * *
The Arch, which Ryan and Ashley were fascinated by, so we took the kids there this morning.

We stopped at Sonic for lunch. I'm not sure I'm crazy about ordering and eating lunch in the car, especially when it's already a total mess from spending 3 hours driving in it.

After lunch we headed on over to the Magic House/Children's Discovery Museum. It really put the Bloomington, IL version to shame. Bret and Ryan had fun in the mock grocery store.

The kids and I made our own TV news broadcast.

Ashley got a new hair do with the Electro Static Generator.

After leaving the museum, we headed over to our hotel to check in. While the lobby and the pool were pretty nice, the rooms weren't as nice as the pictures they showed on the internet. The kids were excited that they would be able to sleep in bunk beds and we were happy that we wouldn't be getting kicked by them all night, so all was well.

Bret took advantage of it not being our own bed and joined Ryan in jumping on it.

After spending a couple of hours in the pool and the game room, we headed over to the nearby Walmart to get snacks. Ryan and his new fixation on Star Wars managed to talk us into buying him a couple of Star Wars action figures. He's already making a mental list of what other's are available and has been asking for them every hour, it seems.

Bret and Ryan play with Ryan's new toys.

Since the kids seemed so fascinated with the Arch on the way in, we stopped there on our way home this morning. The walk from the car was unbelievably and very painfully COLD! (But I managed to get a picture anyway.)

The kids found a train whistle on the way to the little elevators that take you up to the top of the Arch.

Bret and Ryan pretended they were in Star Wars Pods. (Told you Ryan is becoming a Star Wars nut-he and Bret watched both of the newest episodes on the car dvd player both ways.)

The kids really enjoyed the Arch...

...but didn't care too much for the cold walk back to the car.

Now we're back home again and unpacked. I'm finding it hard to stay awake after all the driving so I think I'll go kick back and relax. Or maybe not since the dryer just buzzed. Sigh.
You'll find more pictures over on Flickr.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Why I Hate Winter

Because 8 hours after you book a hotel room on Thursday for a family weekend getaway and you're looking forward to a Friday with no kids all day, your 6 year old son wakes up later that night with a 103 fever and the wicked sounding cough that you've just gotten over yourself.

Sound familiar?

Ahh...Weekend Getaway

I've just booked us a room in a nice hotel in St. Louis for this weekend. The kids are going to be surprised when they get home from school because they have no idea we were planning this. In fact, neither did Bret. (Ha.) I called him at work earlier today and said, "Let's take the kids to St. Louis for the weekend." He agreed that we needed to break out of here and do something fun as a family. We'll probably visit either the Children's Museum or the Science Center while we're there and then kick back in the hotel's indoor pool and playground after dinner. That's usually the kids' favorite part of these overnight trips anyway- staying at a hotel and swimming and then kicking their parents while they sleep in bed all night long. And the best part? I'll have something to blog about again. (I know - I've been having a dry spell here.)

Stay tuned. . .

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

What Day Is Today?

I'm not quite sure what day of the week it is anymore. It's all been quite a blur. I did indeed end up with that horrible cold that's been going around. The kids got it, too. While we're feeling much better than we did last week, we're still not quite over it. I did finally getting around to unloading the pictures that have been sittting on our camera for the past month.
* * * *
Cecelia and Chloe, who keep me so busy that I'm not sure what day or time it is anymore. I'm not complaining though, because it's been great watching these two grow and discover new things. Chloe is sitting by herself now and Cecelia is almost there herself. They love being together during the day and really amuse each other. This afternoon we even ventured out to Sam's Club since they have such huge carts. The girls did great and since Cecelia's car seat takes up so much room in the cart, she kept me from throwing too much stuff in. Chloe got most of the boxes thrown in around her up front though. She wasn't going anywhere, even if she wanted to.

Ashley's been keeping busy with homework. She and I spent Saturday morning with Shawn getting quite a bit of hair cut off and my much needed highlights redone. Maybe I'll get around to getting pictures of our new do's sometime soon.

Both kids are such a big help when they get home from school with the babies. They look forward to getting down on the floor and playing with them. Ryan is nuts for Chloe and she's quite attached to him, too. Ashley and Cecelia seem to have bonded, too. I guess they've picked their favorites.

Well, I'm off to go get round three of feeding time ready for the girls so they can take their afternoon naps. Might take one myself.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

My Turn

Stupid. defiant. cold.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Booked Solid

Throughout the day today, I've felt the same cold that both babies and my two kids have had slowly creeping up on me. I don't have time in my busy schedule for this! I can possibly schedule a cold in for a brief time on Friday evening, but it'll have to be gone by the next day so I can get my house cleaning done on Saturday and join everyone over at Kelly and Dan's (baby Cecelia's parents) for the Bear's game on Sunday. Ugh. I hate colds.

So in my foggy headed state I must have lost my mind today because I packed up the babies and attempted to make a quick trip to the library. Normally that would have worked out fine, but I just had to decide to go to one of the older libraries on the other side of town because the online card catalog said that they had my book in stock. Halfway there, it starts snowing again. Really snowing. Once I got there I loaded them up in the double stroller and pushed them through the snow accumulating on the ground and up the icy ramp towards the door without falling down. So far so good. They had a ramp so one would think the building would be stroller or wheel chair friendly, right? Wrong. Once inside the doors I found there was only a small landing that then went up about 7 or 8 stairs. Bummer. Since I couldn't bring the babies up with me, I just had the librarian look it up for me. Turns out the book wasn't there after all. Figures. Two minutes later, with a hold on the book we were out the door and heading home. I should have just called.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

May The Force Be With You

So much for crippling winter weather - even if it knocks your electricity out for over 12 hours. This huge ice and/or snow storm was predicted for Peoria over the weekend and while we did get some icy conditions and about an inch of snow, it wasn't nearly as bad as they were warning. At 11:30pm on Sunday night, our power went out (yes, again!) and didn't come back on until after noon on Monday. It was pretty darn cold in here when we woke up Monday morning. Why can't the power ever go out when it's in the 60's or 70's outside? It's always in the 90's or bitter cold.

Everyone was suppose to go back to work and school today, but then Ashley woke up this morning with a really bad cold and stayed home from school. Bret stayed home to help out since I had both babies here today. She's feeling some better even if her nose doesn't seem to be working yet.

So, anyway. Ryan has a new fixation. After spending some time over at Teri's house over the weekend in her husband's Lego room, he now is very much into Star Wars. (Just when I thought he already had any toy out there by now). He kept Bret from leaving his room at bedtime last night because he wanted to "talk about Star Wars". This morning when we woke him up, he picked up the conversation right where they had left off last night. (Think maybe he was dreaming about it all night?) When he got home from school today, he and Bret plopped down on the couch for a Star Wars movie marathon. From the time he got home from school until 7pm tonight, he managed to get the first two of the older movies in. He now hates Darth Vader with a passion and says that he's a "poop head" for cutting Luke Skywalker's hand off". Guess what they'll be doing tomorrow night?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Don't Try This At Home Kids

Anyone who knows Ryan very well will easily understand and be able to imagine what is coming next. Last Thursday at school, the kids had an assembly where a magician talked about self esteem and performed magic tricks while talking to keep the kids' attention. This morning Ryan went through half a box a kleenex, stuffing one in his mouth and then pulling it out and looking at it in disgust. Over and over again he kept doing this until finally he starting beating the s*#% out of the wads of kleenex on the floor. When I couldn't keep quiet any longer, I asked him what the heck he was doing and why was he so upset? He paused from his abusing stomps towards the kleenex and told me that "It's not working! I hate kleenex!" Trying not to laugh, I asked him what he was expecting from the kleenex and he told me he was mad because it wasn't coming out of his mouth different colors like it did with the man from the assembly. So much for "not trying this at home kids!" Very typical Ryan.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Common Sense

They are saying we're going to get hit again. The weather maps are all predicting a horrible storm of ice and snow. Snow I can do. Ice? Forget it. We woke up this morning with about a quarter of an inch of ice, but it doesn't seem so bad yet. We'll see. So, what is on my agenda for today? Cleaning my carpets. Right before a winter storm. Makes sense, right?

Update: My carpets are now clean and I'm moving on to my kitchen floor. (And thinking that a cleaning lady would really be nice about now!) I've been watching the weather channel (Yes, I'm a weather channel junkie.) and it looks like the meteorologists just might be 2 for 2 this winter. Most of it looks to be coming tomorrow, which works for me since Bret and the kids are already off on Monday. But what, you ask? Lord, please let there be school on Tuesday. While I can most certainly do it, being home with four kids all day might just put me through the ringer and into a mental facility .

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Long Lost Update

It's been a long 5 days since I've updated this blog and I admit that I've been slacking quite a bit. I'll try to do better in the future. Life has been very busy since the holidays. I'm now watching two infants during the day and they keep me very busy. As soon as I think I've got a free minute or two, it's gone in a flash.

Bret is doing better now since his visit with the stomach flu. I've been deathly afraid that myself or the kids might come down with it, but I think enough time has passed that we can all breathe a sigh of relief. Bret was locked in the bedroom in a mandatory quarantine for a good 12 hours until he was feeling better and I stayed in the bedroom downstairs until it was safe to return to my own room.

Then, a day later Cat and Tom (baby Chloe's parents whom I watch during the week) came down with the stomach flu at the same time. I took Chloe off their hands so they could get some rest on Sunday afternoon and kept her overnight and through the next day while Cat tried to go back to work. Did I mention that I'm absolutely done having babies of my own? I got up with her once in the middle of the night and while she did go back to sleep right away, I'm not sure I could ever get use to that again.

I did have quite a few bouts of queasiness during the week and was afraid the flu was coming to get me so maybe I did have a slight strain of it or maybe it was more Migraine related. Who knows.

I'm heading out tonight for our neighborhood Drunko, um, I mean "Bunco" or "Ladies Night Out" night. Unfortunately, it's not going to be a very late night since I've got to get up at 6:15am in the morning for Cecelia to arrive.

I promise to blow the dust off of the camera and get some new pictures of the kids on here soon.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

It's All Oprah's Fault

Bret had quite a long night last night. With a guilty conscience, I do have to admit that I slept really well in the guest room downstairs - away from any germs. Bret was pretty much in quarantine all night in our bedroom. (Once again, I am deathly afraid of throwing up!) He woke up this morning feeling a lot better. I spent most of the day disinfecting my house - I dare anyone to try to find even the smallest of germs over here!) However, I have to admit that I did probably go a little overboard. I had seen an episode on Oprah a couple of days ago on germs and dust mites and figured this was as good of an opportunity as any to take them down. After hauling our king size comfortor over to my inlaw's house for a washing in their huge capacity washer and dryer, I dusted every inch of our bedroom (ceiling fan, included) and even vacuumed both sides of our mattress and sprayed our pillows and the rest of the room with lysol. You know, just in case I had missed a germ or two. Let's just say it took our bedroom a couple of hours to air out before we could breathe in there again. Tomorrow I'll be going into the kids' rooms armed with my swiffer duster and vacuum cleaner.

Friday, January 05, 2007

The Plague

The epidemic flu running through our neighborhood hit our house tonight. Bret came home from work with a horrible stomach ache. He has since paid a visit to the porcelein God in the bathroom and is running a 101.7 fever. Ugh. I've instructed him to stay behind closed doors in the bedroom until he's better and I can get in there with a case of lysol cans. I've told the kids that they probably should leave daddy be so that they don't come down with it. I myself have fleed the bedroom and will be staying in the guest room downstairs. Thankfully, he's acting like a big boy and hasn't whined about it once.

Bret is the seventh person in our neighborhood alone to come down with it. Kinda makes you wonder if we were loving on all of our neighbors a bit too much at midnight on New Year's Eve, doesn't it?

Well, I'm going to go wash my hands again in scalding hot water. I feel kind of bad leaving Bret in there all alone tonight, but I am so horribly and deathly afraid of throwing up. However, if I get it, I do expect him to be there holding my hand and rubbing my back through out my bout with it. And my mom can expect the traditional "Mom, I threw up. I'm so sick." phone call, too.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

My Trip To The Gym With Two Babies

Wow. I think I spent more time packing the babies up to go to the gym and then unloading them than I did actually working out in the gym today. I hauled them into Gold's today in the double stroller after feeding and changing both of them once they had woken up from their morning naps. Can you believe that they don't have automatic push button's for the doors at a gym? (Ha!) Getting the big stroller through the doors was quite fun. Dropping them off to the daycare wasn't too bad and then I got a quick 20 minute work out in. (Didn't want to push it too long in case they were in there screaming their cute little baby heads off). We got out to the car without incident until it was time to fold up a double stroller that didn't want to budge. I finally gave up and put the back seats down and shoved it in. It's still sitting there just the way I left it while I decide if I'm going to brave it all over again. We'll see.

Yesterday was the first day with both of them. It's gone pretty well until one cries during naptime and wakes the other up. Then we have to start all over again. I'm thinking about putting one of the pack 'n plays in the bedroom downstairs so when one wakes up they don't wake up the other one. Once again, we'll see. Have you ever tried to disassemble one of those things? Not fun.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Hapy New Year!!!

Last night we joined the rest of our friends out here in our neighborhood for a progressive New Year's Eve party. Starting at 7pm, we arrived to our first party where jello shots were flowing freely. (A bit too freely!) We watched the Chicago Bears get their butts kicked and then headed over to another party where our bartender was mixing all kinds of homemade shots that most of us stayed away from. By midnight Ryan was half past tired and I had to bring him home. I'm amazed that he lasted that long. He wants to know if he gets to stay up "really, really, really late" again tonight. (He was up by 7am this morning, so I think not). Bret and Ashley stayed at the party across the street for another hour or so and then headed on home. Can you believe that my ten year old daughter outlasted me last night? However, it's 11:30am right now and she's still in bed.

Chloe comes back tomorrow after being gone over the holidays. It's been about three weeks since I've gotten to love on her on a regular basis. Cecelia starts full time on Wednesday and I'm looking forward to bonding with her, too. The kids go back to school on Wednesday and normalcy will reign. (When did 4 and 5 month babies become my norm?)

Guess I should go clean and get ready for the babies to come back. All of the baby stuff is being stored in the bedroom downstairs and it's time to get this house clean and bring it all back up.

Happy New Year, Everyone!