Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Kiss your what?

Asher's new favorite thing is to ask me to kiss his owies to make them all better. Yesterday he fell on a block or something, and comes whining up to me saying...

"mommy, kiss my bum"

I thought it was hilarious, but I had no one to laugh about it with, so I thought I would document it. To make it even better, if he doesn't feel like it is quite "all better", he says "again" until it feels better. So after I kissed his lower back (I couldn't quite bring myself to kiss his bum), he said...


over and over again. I love my Asher!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

A Valentine weekend

Nate and I have never been big on Valentine's Day, even though we do usually do a little something. We didn't really have anything planned this year, but ended up having a fun weekend. On Friday night, our friend Josh came into town from Delaware, so I got a babysitter and we all went to the New York City Ballet. They did 3 different suites. The first one was more contemporary, and while they were amazing, it really wasn't my favorite piece. The second was amazing. It was just what I wanted to see, classic, flowing, waltzing ballet, with beautiful costumes and lifts and leaps. I love how everything they do looks so effortless. The last piece was West Side Story, which was fun, but I think I would rather just see the musical. They had people backstage doing the vocals while the dancers on stage lip-synced. It was a little weird. But the dancing was fun. I still say that the middle piece was the best. 

On Saturday Josh offered to babysit for me and Nate so we could get a quick bite to eat. We went to a restaurant on 108th and Amsterdam called Thai Market, and it was pretty darn good. A very fun ambiance. It was so nice to have a leisurely walk with just Nate and have dinner without the kids, and to actually talk and hold hands. We stopped at the grocery store on the way home, which is one of Nate's favorite things to do... seriously! It's our favorite grocery store, and they also carry Junior's cheesecake, so we picked some up for dessert. It was so scrumptious! To top it off, we caught the bus for a nice romantic ride home ! ;) I had offered to babysit for our neighbors, so we were back early, by 7:00 pm, so they could go out. I spent the rest of the night babysitting, and watching Grey's Anatomy, while Nate and Josh kicked it at our place. It was a lovely weekend!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Tender mercies

It's been a rough couple of weeks with our little Asher. IT has finally happened... he has learned how to climb in and out of his crib. The OUT of the crib is the part that's been a real downer. I realize that I should be extremely grateful that he has lasted this long. He has always been such a great sleeper, and just never questioned that when I put him in his crib, he was supposed to stay there. But, since that dreadful day, I have been getting extremely anxious around bedtimes. I now understand why so many parents put it off, especially when kids are playing so nicely, because it is so exhausting to fight them into bed, and then keep putting them back in time and time again. I am not proud of my parenting over the past few days. It seems that nothing works to keep him in his bed except getting angry, and I HATE being that kind of mom. I hate thinking that I finally got him to be quiet and stay in bed because I scared him or made him sad. Last night was the worst. After so many nights of this "game" that is getting SOOO old, and after a very busy day yesterday, during which Asher decided he didn't need a nap, so he was a MONSTER, I just couldn't take it any more. It was really scary to ME to feel how angry and frustrated I was. I am really grateful that I have the ability to recognize when I am not in control, even in the moment, and that I am able to slow down and ultimately stop myself from doing anything that would hurt my child. The more I think about it, I really feel that anger is most often, not the answer. I believe that it is affective and even appropriate occasionally, but for this, I just don't think it is right... it doesn't feel right. So today, I went and bought a lock for the outside of his door. That's right people, I am going to lock my child in his room and let him cry it out. No more going in to sing another song, or get him water, or milk, or water in a different cup, or read a book, or any other excuses that he will pull out for hours if we let him. It's not going to be pretty, but I know my child, and I know that it will be effective, and that it will only last a couple of nights.  But the most important thing to me, is that my child gets the sleep he needs, and that has not been happening.  The other part to the solution is a big boy bed. I put in a request to have maintenance bring a twin bed up here, and today, I let Asher pick out some Thomas the Train sheets from Target, which he hugged to his chest all throughout the store, while saying "take to our house now?" Which leads me to the point of this post... (geez, I am so long winded... sorry)

Today I put Sayer down for a nap at 9:00 am, and took the monitor to my neighbors so she could babysit him, then Asher and I headed to Target to get sheets and a lock for the door. On the way home, I was carrying Asher and the stroller up 3 flights of stairs, with his beloved blanky over my shoulder. Unbeknownst to me, the blanky slipped off on the stairs, and I didn't realize until we were on the train and the doors had closed. I wanted to cry. As the train started to move, I started thinking about everything we were going through with Asher and his sleeping, and the thought of him not having his blanky in the midst of it all, made me want to cry even more. I thought of all my options, thinking I could order him a new one, or I could go back and get it, but someone probably would have picked it up and taken it... this is New York after all. But as the train stopped at the next station, I made an impulse decision and got off the train. I was thinking how I couldn't believe that I was going all the way back there to get his blanket. It wouldn't be such a big deal, except that I had Asher in his stroller, and it meant that I had to carry him down 3 flights of stairs, cross the street, then go up another 3 flights of stairs to get to the North bound train to go back up to the 225th stop. Then I had to go down 3 flights of stairs, cross the street, and go up another 3 flights of stairs to get to where I dropped the blanket, and get back on the south bound train. After I had already gone down and up the first 2 sets of stairs, I was feeling close to tears... silly I know, but I was. While we were on the train, I explained to Asher that mommy dropped his blanky and that we had to go back and get it. He just kept saying "I sorry mommy" over and over. Such a sweetheart. As I was getting off the train at 225th, I was praying that Asher's blanket would still be there. I told Heavenly Father how I would feel so much better if someone would offer to help me down these 3 flights of stairs right now, and that if they did, then surely it would be Him telling me that it was ok, and that Asher's blanket would still be there and that this whole 20 minute detour would be worth it. Well, as the last person past me to go down the stairs, I thought, well, that's that, the blanket is not going to be there, I might as well just prepare myself now. But then the last girl stopped before she went down, and asked me if I would like some help. I wanted to cry. I know this all sounds so silly to you all, but I'm sure that everyone has had moments where they are at their wits end, and they just need a little tender mercy, to know that Heavenly Father is aware of them and their problems, no matter how silly they may seem. Well, this was one of those times. As I crossed the street to get to the last set of stairs, I felt confident that the blanket would be there, and it was. Someone had graciously picked it up and draped it over the edge so that people wouldn't trample all over it. I was so happy that I literally did start to cry. It's amazing that the things that are important to us, no matter how small, are also important to Heavenly Father. 

So yeah, that's all... I just wanted to share that. However, just once, I would love to have a simple, uneventful trip to Target. Maybe next time! Same with doing the laundry... another story for another time!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The dog show

This little guy won Best in Show, and I was so glad. He is so sweet looking, how could you not want to cuddle him? And I am not even a dog lover.

Guess where I went this Tuesday night? The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. You know, the kind of dog show that gets made fun of in "Best in Show". It was pretty fun. You definitely get some characters sitting around you, commenting on how big of a contender this dog is and how that dog is really at the top of his game. Weird that people get so into this. It was at Madison Square Garden, which I had never been to before. It was cool, not a bad seat in the house, seriously. I went with my friend Natalie, and we had great fun commenting on the outrageous things people do to their dogs and eating overpriced burgers and chicken fingers and cotton candy. Thanks Natalie for a fantastic night out!
This isn't a good picture, but this Chinese Crested dog literally looked like a rockstar. It had long hair that was honest to goodness styled like a human being's with volume and everything. It was ridiculous. Then of course, you add in the "boots" it's wearing, and it looks like a rocker wearing moon boots. Amazing!! By the way, I think this is the ugliest kind of dog, out of all the breeds. Sad, but true.

Monday, February 09, 2009

On to California

During our time in Spokane, I spent some time on the phone with my mom and sister Whitney. Whit had been having lots of contractions and felt like she was going to have the baby any day. Well, I REALLY wanted to be able to see the precious little guy and help out as much as I could, and of course visit with all of my family, so my mom was gracious enough to fly me out there after the wedding. Nate had to head back to NY for school, and took Asher with him. My wonderful friends in my building were nice enough to watch him during the day when Nate had stuff. So it was just me and Sayer heading out to Cali.
Sayer was in full "charm" mode for most of the trip. He was so smiley and loved all the attention!

First we flew in to Sacramento for a few days, as Whit hadn't had her baby yet, and I wanted to visit with everyone. It was great fun. I love hanging out and laughing with my fam. Unfortunately, Sayer had a touch of the flu when we got there (he was really hardly sick at all... both he and Asher threw up, but only once, and there were really no other symptoms... Nate got it the worst, poor fella) but my whole family including my Grandma Leni came down with the flu pretty badly. It actually turned out to be pretty perfect for me and Sayer, as on Wednesday, everyone was supposed to be at school and work, but instead, they were all home with us. Selfish, I know, but we had a video fest, took naps, and visited all day. If they hadn't all been sick, I would have just been home all by myself all day long... so not fun. So it was really a blessing in disguise. So, family, you are welcome!
Unfortunately, my mom couldn't find any of the old baby toys, so Sayer had to resort to playing with plates and buttons on electronics that he was not supposed to touch!

On Wednesday night, after Ashley touched up my horrible looking roots,

Sayer and I drove down to Sunnyvale to visit with Ben and Whit and Joelie and Kadin.

It was so great to visit with them. I think Whit was trying desperately to get that baby out, as we had spicy (and delicious) Thai food one night, and spicy (and delicious) Indian food another day. We also saw Bride Wars, which was fun (I'm really not hard to please) and hit up In & Out (de-lish). We watched Stardust, which was so fun... Ben insisted that we watch something I had never seen before. Apparently, he loves watching movies that other people have never seen, with those other people.
Hailey. Graduating from high school this year! Crazy!

On Saturday, I will have you all know, that Whitney ran 4 miles... the day before she gave birth... yeah, that's all I have to say about that. Later my whole fam (minus Jill... we totally missed you sista) came down to visit and pick up the van that I had driven down.
Hailey, Whit, Kadin

We chatted, laughed, ate, watched Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium (SO cute!), ate some more (chinese food), listened to music, and watched my dad play with all of Joelie and Kadin's cool toys. He played trains with them, and built huge puzzles... he is such a cute grandpa. It was so fun to be able to visit with everyone.

That night, Joelie woke up with the flu... several times. So sad. I do feel bad for bringing the flu upon everyone. What are you gonna do though?? Anyway... On Sunday, Sayer and I were all packed to head to the airport for our 1:20 flight, and of course, Whit announces that she was pretty sure she was going into labor. Perfect timing, of course. So a friend of theirs took me and Sayer to the airport, and Whitney had little Oliver approximately 7 and a half hours after I left. I was so sad. Oh well. I think there is some rule that that is just how things go. My whole family had been in town the week before I was due with Asher, hoping he would be born early. They left Sunday morning, and he was born that night... it's just the way things go.

Anyway... I have to say that my whole 2 1/2 week trip to Washington and Cali was pretty much perfect. It was so great to be in so many different places for short periods of time. It makes it so that we were never bored and really got to see EVERYONE... well, except for Analee and Tyler who were in Australia, Erin who was in SLC with a new baby, and Jill who was in Provo. But I would still call that a VERY successful trip. By the end, we were feeling re-energized and ready to come home and get back to reality. We are all pretty much back to normal sleeping schedules, and I have made dinner pretty much every night. We'll see how long that lasts! ;)
I just had to show off this beautiful picture of my youngest sister Lexi. She got her braces off, and then had to have some teeth capped, and she looks gorgeous... so grown up!

MacKay's wedding

Nate's little bro MacKay got married on January 17th, and we were fortunate enough to get to go. We flew out to Spokane about a week and a half before the wedding to spend time with the fam, first in Spokane for a few days, then on to the Tri-cities area where his sister Lizza lives with her cute little fam, and then back to Spokane for the wedding and more visiting. We had such a great time, the boys were great, and I got the break from the city that I didn't even realize I needed. Once we got out into the wide open spaces, I felt much more relaxed and free. It probably had something to do with the fact that I hardly ever saw Asher. Every house we stayed in was very spacious and had many toys to be entertained with, as well as numerous kids to play with. He was in heaven, and so was I, as I didn't have to do an ounce of entertaining. So what did I do with all my spare time? I spent a lot of it chatting with my sisters in law, laughing hysterically with Zach and Lizza at the shows "True Beauty" and "A.I", running, getting pedicures (ok, only one), shopping, going to Chuck-e-cheese (twice... Asher loved it), going out to eat (or getting take-out), watching some movies, and reading a BUNCH of books. In our tiny apartment, there is literally no where else to go but in the family room, so whenever I try to read a book, Asher usually just comes up and tries to take it away or close it, so it's really not worth trying. As a result, I haven't been able to read as much as I would like to. Twas not the case in Washington. I read North and South, Princess Academy, all 5 of the Confessions of a Shopaholic series, and started reading I am a mother. Loved them all. Of course it was all very light reading, but that is the best kind when you are on vacation.

Anyway, I digress... the wedding was beautiful and we are so excited to have Rebecca as part of the Olson fam now. Thank you to all of the Olsons and Caziers who put us up, and put up with us. We love you and miss you!

Here are some pictures of the wedding and fun times from our visit to Washington...

Asher with Andy and Kacey's kids
Riding bikes at Zach & Lizza's house. This was so hilarious to watch. Those boys go SO fast on those big wheels, while Asher is just daintily peddeling away on the tricycle.

Riding the cars and trains at Chuck-e-cheese

Sayer as cute as ever at C-E-C. So I swear he didn't wear this outfit everyday. He just happened to be wearing it on the days when I took my camera out. It's cute though, it used to be my brothers!
MacKay & Rebecca, just after the sealing
Duffy, Nate, Me, waiting for them to finish pics at the temple
The spread. I heard it was delish, but I was too stuffed from dinner to try any.
The cake. It was yummy!
Those pretty looking things are mints. Yum!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Home again home again

Wow. I have really been slacking on the blogging lately. I don't know what my deal is. I have 2 posts ready to be published, I just need to upload the pictures, and that takes some effort, but I am getting there. We got back from a nice 2 1/2 week long vacation a little over a week ago, and things have been great. I feel rejuvenated and have been more productive than I have been since the beginning of December. We even had a gorgeous day on Monday and I got out of the apartment with the kids twice in one day. I can't even remember the last time that has happened! We went to the park and to 2 different grocery stores. That's how it works here... our neighborhood grocery store for all the groceries, then to another on 110th and Broadway for our produce, bagels and hummus. 

The kids have both readjusted to being home... Asher complete with a black eye from falling into a metal chair at church, and Sayer with his new found love for eating cheerios and anything else he can feed to himself. Man, I really do have the most precious kids in the world. Everyday I have been feeling so blessed to be their mom and to get to stay home with them. They make me smile and laugh everyday. 

Nate is back in school and is busy busy, but seriously loves it.  He is always trying to talk to me about the "interesting article" he read that day.  It takes all of my effort to focus my mind and pay attention to whatever it is he wants to say about it.  It's usually some obscure thought about culture and society and the differences between the two and how it affects the things we do everyday.  Don't get me wrong, it's not that it's not interesting... it's just that it's not as fascinating to me as it is to him.  Which is good I suppose, as he is the one getting his doctorate, not me.  

I have started training for my second marathon, and am in my 5th week of training.  It has been going really well actually, and I am enjoying being more consistent in my running.  Yesterday I went running in the snow, and it was a little weird... trying to see where I was going through the snowfall flying in my eyes and trying not to fall on the snowy/sloshy ground.  Yeah, I don't think I'm a fan... it takes way more energy than normal.  But the cool thing about my run is that A. it was beautiful, and B. I saw a movie shoot, complete with about 6 or 7 actor's trailers.  They were pretty cool looking.  Some of them had actual front doors with decorative windows and everything.  I thought that was pretty funny.  I couldn't really see what was going on, but it looked like they were using a local apartment building as their set.  I saw one of the actors coming out of her trailer with someone holding an umbrella for her, as she was saying something about not wanting to ruin her hair.  I couldn't tell who it was.  It looked like that blond chick from Studio 60, but I couldn't be sure.  Oh, that reminds me.  In Enchanted, the apartment building they used as Patrick Dempsey's apartment is by my house.  It's a couple blocks over, but is right across the street from one of the park's we frequent.  I thought that was so cool.  

Anyway... just wanted to do a little "hello, I'm back" post to put up until I find the resolve to upload my pictures from the camera.  Until then...