Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Vincent and his Monkeys

Life is never boring around here.. I will give you that.  :)  I have been going insane getting everyone well from the pooping factory- I am pleased to announce that Vincent is all better and out of his diaherria stage yay!! I have never seen that much poop OMG.  

Now.. Tori's swing was dying... so she would not nap good for mama at all-  I am used to the short naps in the morning but I really LIVE for the naps in the afternoon because that (2-3 hour) nap she takes in the swing is the ONLY time all day I am able to get things done as well as you can with a 2 year old that tries to help.  Vincent really enjoys helping "clean"  He will wipe things clean and he really enjoys running around the house with a broom and screaming.  I am not sure if he thinks he is helping when he does that or if it is for fun?  :)  He is starting to understand when Mommy cleans its time to settle down and help or go somewhere else and do a quiet activity while mommy is busy.  

We now have Netflix at our house despite the captioning crisis over at Netflix that has many deaf/hh folks up in arms and angry.  Andy wanted more access to different things for gaming and movies and shows... and there are "some" very limited things that are captioned.   I am hoping that since some deaf folks and NAD are suing them for violation of ADA act and blah blah blah (yea I didn't do research) that things will start speeding up for more access for deaf folks. There is no excuse since hulu and youtube have the ability to caption now.. so netflix really needs to get its butt moving.  Anyway- yesterday while i was trying to figure out how to keep one kid occupied and run around with the other in a carrier or vice versa.. I decided to turn on netflix to see what they had for little kid movies... and they have a pretty amazing full selection.  Vincent saw this movie about a Monkey and wanted to see it......... yes ladies and gentlemen... we have a CURIOUS George fan in the house- and nothing makes me happier because as a little girl I loved him too.  I said Ok, you want to watch this with your juice and blanky and eat ur fish and be quiet as can be so Mama can clean?  he nodded eagerly... and I said ok. I was thinking in my head this is NOT going to last long or end well.  I started the movie and Vincent was jabbering excitedly- Mama look, Monkey (points at screen and signs monkey) Yes Monkey vincent It is a Monkey movie.  Vincent sat for the longest time about 20 mins then he moved for a little bit... then something more exicting happened in the movie so he settled down again and watched it until the end.  I was AMAZED.  My 2 year old- he is SO busy all day and wants to run, play jump and bounce......actually sat and watched a entire full length movie at 85 mins long............ and he got delighted in the fact he could sign to me all the animals he saw in the movie. It makes me sad that my little boy is growing up but at the same time- it gives me a little more freedom (haha!) to do a few things quick without him hanging on to me, or victoria is asleep and he wont nap.  It was the most relaxing 85 minutes except for him talking about all the animals.  :)  Nothing makes me happier than seeing my little boy so content with his life. 

Victoria is still working on rolling over. I am not sure if I have mentioned that Tori has been able to lay on her side since she was about 2 weeks old- she is making every attempt to roll on her tummy from her back.  She abosutely hates tummy time on the floor so she does it while she is on mama and no rollling- that scares me! 
She just turned 4 months old and now is laughing when she sees her brother do something funny, or daddy or me.  she LOVES to be held though and is starting to like her bouncer less and less.  I am exploring options for a new chair for her that is a "big girl" chair.  I got this Infant to Toddler chair for vincent and he loves it and still uses it to sit in to read books or watch t.v.  I had tori sit in it the other day and he did not like it one bit. and tori did seem to like it but it is more upright than her old one, so i am thinking she was not used to having to support her weight more.  We will see what happens and the progress she makes. :) 

Vincent is in a monkey phrase right now... he loves the song 5 monkeys jumping on the bed and he loves curious george now.... guess maybe his pooh days are far behind him? NEVER... he still takes pooh and tigger and his beloved pooh blanky every night to bed.  you can't go wrong with pooh. ever. :)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Pooping Factory

So- excuse me- I haven't been on in a few days.... For over a week now- our househould has turned into a pooping factory!  Vincent must have picked up a flu virus while we were running errands-which means time for me to buy sanizter again and not go to the store as much during the fall/winter season again.  Anyways, He picked up a virus and experienced no pain like other, and could not stop pooping.  Friday-after a week of this and the poop was nasty smelling anyway- I took him in to make sure it was not anything more serious- he had a virus.  Great.  I love viruses just beause you have to let it run its course.  

It had seemed Vincent was starting to feel better- oh when he threw up...........then he was NOT feeling well at all.  Andy got the pooping flu too......and was sick all weekend.. so far Tori and I have been spared from it.  

Last night, I was constantly struggling between trying to clean and make sure the kids were happy and ok, as well as andy (my 3rd child!)  Vincent had just pooped, so I changed him and Andy ran to the bathroom and did what he had to- I was kind of aghast-I did just clean the toilet yesterday morning and andy has to plaster his artwork as soon as possible (this is a running joke between us because i will never understand why he wants to do that!) I was sitting with Victoria SHE then decided to join the boys and start pooping and it exploded outside of the diaper.. leading to the 4th clothing change.. I said out loud.. well guys- Mama was going to clean but you kids keep on pooping!!! Andy who was watching Arthur on netflix- I am so jealous he can watch Netflix anytime he wants. Anyway-he turned his head and looked at me and seriously started to laugh and laugh and laugh.  I just looked at him and laughed too just because the amount of diapers and poop i've had to deal with in the past 7 days is just ridicilious.  I have never seen so much poop in my entire life.  

I guess our Family can safely start a poop factory.... after all we churn the stuff out good! :) 

Monday, August 22, 2011


and no i don't mean age, sex, location!!! I mean American Sign language... yes.. finally after 3 years of dating and a lot lot lot of frustration with spoken communication and fights that often end in silent anger and tears and slamming doors oooh now im thinking of Taylor Swift- "our song".

So Monday nights are usually family nights with the kids where we watch a movie or hang out with the kids- as a mom i am always hanging out with the kids but on this night daddy joins in and we have lots of squeals and laughing and running around.  Nothing feels as good as a house full of love.

Tonight after a rough weekend and a lot of frustration-I sat down with Andy and started lesson 1 of 30 lessons expecting it would take about 4 months at least... but we found we were having so much fun that I'm really enjoying teaching andy.  Andy is picking it up fairly quickly and Vincent Enjoys the fact Dad is learning how to sign too and even got to show off some signing of his own that Dad didn't know and learned.  Andy had commented that he wants to shoot for 2 lessons a week and try to learn as much so he can expand on the rest after lessons are done.  We will see.  This lesson plan we are following now has about 250-300 MOST commonly used words in the english language (yes there is such a thing!) So I am expecting Andy to be able to sign in proper sentences and use facial expression by the end.  Right now it is all fun and giggles.  I have been working very hard at teaching vincent ASL and he has picked it up fairly well.  Yesterday- I taught him Where since he is always asking (like a typical man!) where is _____________.  He is also learning how to say Please (he can say it perfectly now) and im trying to teach him hand over hand thank you.  He seems to have a challenge with that one-I wonder because he doesn't really understand what it means.  Vincent knows pretty much about 10-15 animal signs. he also likes to sign Star.  Andy was Amazed at how much he knew already and I told andy- that is what I do all day everyday is work on vincents vocab and work on fun games related to signing and just old fashioned playing.  
It seems like.. Andy is finally understanding what I do all day during the week since he is not here so much to see for himself but it is much different from the weekend that we do- do things.  I am much more relaxed over the weekend.  During the week- it is like school.  Vincent is learning all day long basically at 2 years old- learning how to sign, and attempting to talk.. and express himself approipately ( we still have a long way to go with that one)
 I absoutely enjoy learning.. but it is so much fun spending time with my family and just chatting.  Andy and I spent about a good hour after the lesson just chatting.  I hope that it stays that way and it opens up lines of communication.. maybe there won't be slamming doors and FOOOK YOU all over the place... we should see.

Friday, August 19, 2011

"I love you"

so it's been really fun teaching Vincent how to sign. Vincent seems to really pick them up fast and He picks them up even faster if I make a game out of it or somehow visually appealing.  
The last few weeks we have been working on Manners with vincent... like "Please" "thank you" and "you're welcome" and "i'm Sorry"  Vincent really has picked up on please and thank you and im sorry.. but the You're welcome is more difficult for him to understand and master.  

This afternoon I showed him the hand sign for "I love you" Vincent Immediately said NIGHT NIGHTY!!! Yes..... we say it at night.. and that made me think- we should say it more often, not just at night, but when we get up in the morning and even when vincent is naughty.. I love you even though ur being a sassy boy! haha.  but anyway back to the point... I started to teach vincent who was giggling by the way how to sign I-Love-You... So I am sitting there with vincent doing hand over hand... I love you!!!  Vincent would giggle when I would make him do it to his stuffed animals.Vincent knows how to do this on his own I am certain.. but I think he thinks it is more fun to make mommy do it with him and we clap our hands when we are all done with trying something new.. so hes been really catching on.  These days, vincent is asking what everything is and totally absorbing everything in ASL.  he also expresses himself correctly using facial expressions.. it's just amazing to watch to see him grow and learn and really immense himself in the whole culture.  I have to admit I am so proud of him.  I taught vincent how to sign I love you over and over and over... and he giggled... but i know he knows.  he does think mommy is his best friend.  Although.... Today for the first time he went with his grandma for the weekend without being upset or crying.  I guess hes finally realized that its fun with mom and his sister but he would much rather be the center of attention.  :) it broke my heart just a little to know my little boy is starting to need me less and less.  How quickly does the time fly.  he was born just 2 years ago and a little baby in my arms and he was cooing and chatting with me the way Victoria was with me tonight... and I reflect.... in about 2 years... vincent will be a preschooler and Victoria will be stuck in the toddler stage he is in now... and no more babies? only time will tell.... but I hope time freezes long enough for me to tell them everyday, in a million different way......... I love you forever.

Sunday, August 14, 2011


One year ago today... we said goodbye to a dear sweet boy.... he was our friend and our son's buddy.  I reflect on the year that's gone by... so many changes.. and still there's this emptiness that trooper left behind.

Trooper had been critically sick for 5 days when he passed away.  I Had mentioned to Andy that Trooper had not gone outside for a few hours which was a little unusual for him- being a mastiff he drank a lot of water and tended to need to potty a lot.  Andy said ok and I took Vincent to the store...
When I got back and brought the first bag and vincent (yeah i can multitask whoo hoo!) into the house... There was andy on the floor with trooper just begging him to get up and move... at the time I thought there was nothing worse than him not being able to move- how do we get him out to pee (120 pound buddy) we finally got him out and Andy and I decided it was for the best to bring him to the vet.  Andy called the next day and they would not fit trooper in until 4 30.  I was so pissed.  I knew within my heart there was something really wrong with trooper and he needed to be seen sooner than that.  I called and I said I know Trooper has a appt at 4 30 but I really think he needs to come in sooner. he is NOT acting like himself and barely eating or drinking anything.  Andy Brought Trooper in- and they ran blood tests (not enough in my opinion) and said he was dehydrated so they gave him water.  They did give him pain pills for trooper and said maybe he pulled his leg muscle or hip- which is common with bigger dogs and He and Lady were so Active together. I was so angry because trooper could barely swallow his pain pills.... and hes FINE? really.......... (insert a lot of swearing here)
5 days later trooper had rapdily deterioated.. Andy and I tried so much to just get him to eat and drink his water. 
Trooper was acting strange... he was sick for a few days and he hadn't wanted to come in the living room with us.. but that day he did.. and he "spent" time with each of us.  I believe he knew he was dying and did not have very much time left.  He died just a few hours later.  Of what? I dont know.  I wish i had all the answers.. but I know whatever trooper was suffering from didn't let him be a happy dog.  

I have so many pictures of trooper growing up.. playing with us and being our first baby- before vincent! we have quite the collection of Vincent and Trooper being together.  It's very fitting the last photo I took of Trooper just the day before he passed away was with vincent laying on him-comforting him in time of pain.

Trooper... I hope you know we always think of you.... You were a beautiful soul that loved us with everything you had.  You made us laugh with joy, and shout with anger when you were naughty.  You were happy to come up north with us and run and play with the dog pack although you were the biggest one... but the most submissive. :)  I still think of you when it thunders because you get scared and wanted us to snuggle with you.  I hope wherever you are, that you have a lot of friends with you that snuggle with you when you are sad or scared.  I know you know we had victoria- I can't explain it but I know you know.  I will always love you trooper.  You were the sweesest sassy boy ever.  I can't wait until the day we all get to meet again at the rainbow bridge.  I know you're waiting for us.  Just keep watching over us sweet boy. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

rainbow bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called the Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to the Rainbow Bridge.
There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again.
The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head. You look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.
Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together…
-author unknown

In truibute to all animals that have gone on to that side.. Sally, Trooper, Noel.. how we miss you today and forever.

Life... Death... Circle of life

It has been a sad couple days for our family.  Andy's Sister-(my "sis in law") horse passed away early yesterday morning while in surgery.  It got me to start thinking all day about Life, and Death.  I must explain how this came about.
A year ago, our beloved dog- Trooper, who was the sweetest English Mastiff puppy we ever had passed away from something questionable.. and we couldn't save him.  It was then, I too, pondered the true meaning of life... and the circle of life.. and how to begin to understand and accept death.

Yesterday morning- I had found out Noel died.  I loved the name Noel because it always reminded me of christmas and the great joy Christmas brings.  You know- the first noel.  Well, Noel was the best first noel I've ever met and will always remember.  I met Noel 2 years ago- not by sight or visiting but in andy's sister's senior pictures-he was a beautiful horse- and I had then told her I can't wait to meet him he's so beautiful  and you look so happy on him.  a year later, I finally got my chance.  Noel was too sick to trot and run like the other horses in his hall- and stall mates. Despite that- he was gracious and happy to see pepole visiting him and asked for a million carrots.  He seemed to understand Vincent ( who was only about 16 months then) was small and was willing to let vincent say hi and pat him on the head.  he had those big beautiful brown eyes.  Now, being 5'1-5'2.. I don't really like HUGE animals (funny because I LOVE mastiffs and theyre BIG for dogs haha) but Horses kind of make me nervous.  andy's Mom and sisters are so comfortable around horses and they can walk around them like it is nothing.  :) 
Noel had been sick with some health issues for a while.. but this death was very sudden, everyone was very postive he was going to make it through the surgery- so quite a shock.
I had to tell Vincent that Noel went to heaven with Trooper.  Vincent just simply glanced at me and smiled and clapped his hands.  Yea!!!!! Vincent was right... We shouldn't be sad about the fact Noel is gone.. but joyful because he is in a better place with no pain.. and earned his righfully his- horse wings.  
It hit me really hard.. because I understand how it feels to experience quick, shocking death- as we have gone through that with trooper (a different post for a different day) One of my favorite movies as a child- was the lion king.. the circle of life.... It moves us all... through despair and hope.  Right now, it is one of the most saddest times for our family as we mourn Noel and bid him farewell... I know happiness and life will truimph again with hope.

Noel... thank you so much for being part of our family, even though Vincent and I haven't known you as long as Andy- and his family have... you have shown us compassion, and how to be tolerant when life deals you a hard blow and you had to be patient. Thank you, for being a wonderful friend and a amazing competitor.  You are beautiful in this life, and I know you are more beautiful now with your angel horse wings.  I know you are up there with all the animals that have gone on over the rainbow bridge.. and you are waiting for N and our family.  Thank you... for teaching us valuable lessons. You are Noel... the first and only Noel. sweet Noel.