Saturday, October 31, 2009

Boo to you!

Happy Halloween everyone! Our little goblins have been eagerly awaiting this day when candy flows freely and they can take on the identity of another. Last night we carved our pumpkins and all day the kids have been asking if it was time to trick or treat. Cameron did not understand why he had to do chores on Halloween, and Gavin did not want to go to his soccer game because he was afraid he would miss out on some candy. They were in costume by 5 pm and it was the longest hour trying to get them to wait until it at least looked like it was getting dark outside. I took them up and down our street, Mason in the wagon, Cameron running at full speed and Gavin taking his own sweet time meandering from house to house. Luckily the rain has held off. Now it's daddy's turn. He's out with Cameron the serious trick or treater to score some major loot. I am never disppointed at the booty they bring home. Just as long as there are a few peanut butter cups for me. Our Police Man, UPS Man and Octopus

Friday, October 30, 2009


Gavin's preschool went to Pumpkinville yesterday for a field trip. Since Cameron had missed his field trip last week due to being sick, I decided to let him come along and miss school. Now that these two monkeys are almost 4 and almost 7, it seems like they are finally getting into their brother groove. Sure they fight and get on each others nerves, but I am noticing more and more moments when they are just enjoying each other and not competing. Yesterday was one of those days. We really had a great time together. Mason stayed home with Jeremy so I could just concentrate on them. I felt so relaxed as I just sat and watched the boys play and I didn't have to help anyone down the slide or carry them around, and I didn't have to worry that they were getting into something they shouldn't be. They are at great ages and I love it!

Both boys with their favorite preschool teacher, Mrs. Winger

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The hiney virus

That's what we call H1N1 around here. Starting on Monday morning I came down with the dreaded flu. Remember how I didn't want to wait another minute to fill out a form and get the vaccine when the kids got theirs? Well I should have. I could not even get out of bed all day and all of the next. It was horrible. I was achey, I had chills, I had a high fever and a cough and didn't want to eat anything. I finally went to the doctor on Tuesday and they prescribed me Tamiflu which was supposed to shorten the duration of the flu and the symptoms. It ended up making me throw up so I couldn't even take it. She told me that the fever part only lasts 2-3 days and I should be feeling fine by Friday. Well, she was right- sort of. Mid way through Wednesday my fever was gone and I felt much better, I got up, did some housework and got around ok. Thursday I thought I would be back to normal, but I actually felt a bit worse than I had on Wednesday, but I pushed on, disinfecting and washing sheets, counting my blessing that the kids had come out unscathed. I had literally just pushed send on the email to Camerons teacher telling her I was well enough to chaperone the field trip on Friday when I got a call from the nurse at school telling me Cameron had a fever of 102.7 and was complaining that his belly hurt... I picked him up and took him to the doctor where they confirmed he had the dreaded swine and we were off once again to the pharmacy for some Tamiflu. No sooner had I gotten back into the car an headed home than Jeremy called me to let me know that Mason had a fever as well. I learned that it can take up to 2 weeks for a vaccination to work and that is why my kids were dropping like flies. I knew it was only a matter of time before Gavin got sick as well. So Friday looked bleak and I got hardly any sleep that night because my fever had returned! I felt awful again when I woke up and had to have the nurse call in an antibiotic and a steroid because they were afraid I was getting pneumonia. It was back to bed for me but the great news was that all of the kids were doing fine, no more fever, just arunny nose here and a cough there, so they must have picked up some immunity from their shot, thank heavens! You may be wondering about Jeremy by now, well, I didn't actually see much of him all week, he was so scared to get it from me he mostly just popped his head in to check on me and then left, but what he did do was amazing. He basically worked from home most of the week shuttling the boys to school and soccer, making lunches and dinners, changing diapers and dressing the boys, he was such a help and I am so grateful he was here. Yesterday he even took all the boys with a picnic out in the pouring rain and found them some random coin operated horse for them to ride until they were pooped all the way in the Plains where they escaped the rain for long enough to find a new park that we retuned to today as a whole family. I feel much better today and feel like hopefully I have finally kicked this. I don't think I have ever been so sick in my life so get the vaccine people! Don't learn the hard way like I did.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Mason-18 months

Our littlest guy turned 18 months old on the 9th this month. Although he was born weighing the least and was a peanut for a while, we can safely say he is no longer a string bean. He is stout and a short but solid 26 pounds. Mason is full of personality. He makes the funniest faces and walks with a signature strut that makes people smile. We've recently nick-named him Augustus Gloop from the movie Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory because sometimes it seems he is a bottomless pit. He really loves fruit and turns his nose up at most meat. Mason is also our screamer, if he wants something or doesn't like something his first response is to scream- we are working on that. He is our only baby that we taught some sign language, he knows more, please, all finished, drink, and sleepy. He is also beginning to talk a little. His first word was more which he quickly learned so that he could get more food. He also knows hello, doggie, shoe, choo-choo, and drink. Mason has just started to love the Baby Einstein videos. We took them on a recent trip in the car and he was mezmerized. It was pretty funny to watch his reactions from the front seat. This kid also LOVES his daddy and will choose him over me any day.

As cliche as it sounds, it is hard to believe that our baby is more boy and less baby with each passing day. He really wants to do what his brothers are doing and is less willing to just sit and cuddle. His personality fits perfectly between Cameron and Gavin's. He has some of Gavin's spice, but also a lot of Cameron's mildness. If he were a salsa he would safely be a medium. We've got the whole range of heat in our house. It is clear that our little Mase has a zeal for life and just wants to get out there and explore the world around him. His brothers both adore him and everyone just loves to be around him. We are grateful he is ours.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

When Pigs Fly

After much research, deliberation, and prayer, we decided to get our kids the Swine Flu vaccination that made its way to Prince Willaim County on Wednesday. The school sent out an email letting us know thet there were two locations in the county offering the vaccine, one at the Manassas Mall and one father away in Woodbridge. Once I made up my mind to get the shot for them I just wanted to have it done so I didn't have to think about it anymore, so on Friday I picked Cameron up from school at 2:20 and arrived at the mall by 2:40, a whole twenty minutes before they opened the vaccine clinic. When I got there the line was already past the back and forth things you see when you go to amusement parks and halfway down the mall. Gavin asked if we were in line to see Santa, I had to break the news that there was nothing fun at the end of this line. After an hour went by we had almost reached the entry to the roped off line section but there was still a LONG way to go. I contemplated just leaving but I had already sacrificed an hour, why let it go to waste? I had some treats, some small toys and books, but this was no ride to grandmas in the car, my kids were everywhere and probably contracting the swine flu by touching every surface imaginable. Poor Mason stayed strapped into the stroller because I knew if I even let him out for a second there would be no going back into the stroller and I would be chasing him constantly. Hour by hour went by and Jeremy received more and more disgruntled phone calls from me as he made his way home from being out of town. Other families had one parent wait in line while the rest of them walked the mall but I could not do that. At one point Cameron had to use the bathroom but I told him he would have to hold it because I was not going to lose our place in line! After 3 and a half hours we had made it to the entrance of the clinic and after filling out paperwork and being prescreened to get the vaccine we waited again for our names to be called. At this point Cameron could not longer wait to go to the bathroom and there was none in sight. I let the woman in charge of the charts know the situation and ran to the nearby Sears to find a bathroom, it was as far back as you could get and Gavin was having a hard time keeping up. At one point I couldn't find him and paniced that he was lost, but he had just wandered his way around the wrong corner. After the bathroom we ran back and just made it as they called our names. Cameron refused to be first, he was the most terrified to get the shot so I decided to let him see it was no big deal and watch Gavin get it. Well one lady held Gavin on her lap and when they gave it to him he screamed so loud I had to cover his mouth. Mason went next and cried, but in a minute he was fine. At this point Cameron had inched his way to the back wall and was already crying. I had to carry my big 6 year old kicking and screaming and flailing his arms and hold him down along with two others while they pulled up his sleeve and quickly gave it to him. You would have thought we were killing the poor kid. Unfortunately the tears did not end there, we had to sit in a recovery room to watch for reactions for 15 minutes and the whole time Cameron is wailing that it hurt so bad and that he didn't want to get the shot and that I am a mean mom. Phew, I had already had it and was hanging on to the last morstel of patience that I had left before I flipped out as well. We got into our car at 6:46, more than 4 hours after we started. We were starving, tired, and all grumpy, but hopefully this will help prevent us from getting this horrible disease. The best news of all? Since my children are under 10 they have to receive a booster in 3 weeks. I told Jeremy he gets to bring them next time...

Monday, October 12, 2009

Douthat II

This weekend was our second annual trip to Douthat State Park with our friends the Turners, Wadleys, Seldens and Maos. This year we went during their Apple Days Festival and the kids got to press cider, churn butter and use a contraption that cut all the corn off the cob. The weather turned out to be perfect, it was warm on Friday and Saturday and then Sunday was brisk and fallish. The leaves were just starting to turn and we beheld many breathtaking views. We rented a motor boat twice during the weekend and enjoyed the peace and quiet of the lake with our friends. The kids were thrilled to have a three day playdate with their good buddies and the adults spent the evenings playing games and laughing. On Saturday we took the kids that weren't napping to a train museum where they got to see some old trains and ride a little one around the track. On Sunday after a long and eventful hike we headed to the Virginia Safari Zoo for a sequel of the year before where we fed the many animals from the car which petrified poor Mason. This has become a tradition for us that we look forward to and hope to be invited back again. We just need to be able to take the day after off to catch up on all of the lost sleep!

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Have you ever heard of Letterboxing? I hadn't either until a friend posted it on her blog a while back. I have been waiting for a good weekend to attempt it with the kids. Basically, it is like a scavenger/treasure hunt. People have hidden these boxes all over the country and posted clues online for how to find them. You get a stamp and a little notebook and when you find a box, you will discover another stamp and notebook inside. You stamp their book so they know you were there and stamp your own book with their stamp so you know that you found it. We did 4 of them today and it was a lot more fun than I thought it would be! Cameron totally got into it and was begging to keep looking for more. We also found some new spots for hikes with the kids. If you're interested, this and this are the websites. If you go searching, look for the monkey stamp from the "5 Silly Monkeys," that was us!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Apples to Apples

From this:
To This:

Need I say more???