Archive for the ‘Day in the Life’ Category

Laugh until you cry

Thursday, June 28th, 2012

Last night was Miles’s night to put Ian to bed. (We switch nights because it’s too cumbersome for one person to be in charge of bedtime every night, and he and I do bedtime differently — which I think is good for Ian.) He was in the bathroom after Ian’s snack, so we went upstairs–past the bathroom door–to Ian’s room to read and wait.

When we got in his room, he cheerfully said what sounded like “Daddy fart do it”. I wanted to laugh but didn’t and was immediately internally upset that somehow he has learned that word — one that we don’t typically use ourselves. Over the next several minutes, long after Miles had joined us, he kept saying it occasionally. He frequently repeats phrases over and over (and over and over) until we acknowledge that he’s said it or that what he’s observing is correct. I, of course, was ignoring it because I didn’t want to encourage use of the word by acknowledging he was saying it–which would require me to say it. So he kept repeating it.

And I kept cursing daycare because he must have learned it there.

He brushed his teeth while Miles was taking care of some of the dirty diapers from daycare. Then he flushed the toilet, and Ian immediately giggled and said “Daddy fart do it!” After a couple more times, we realized he was saying “Daddy flush toilet.” And then I couldn’t control my laughter. Because I was so sure that daycare must have been where he learned it –and I even was blaming the annoying girl so I had someone to blame (it’s so absurd to think about it now still). I laughed until I cried and I couldn’t make it stop. (This is a trait that runs through my mom and sister as well.)

Then, all of the sudden, Ian’s face turned red and his cheeks were scrunched up and he burst into tears. Huge. Big. Crocodile tears.

photo taken by Miles:

Then I couldn’t stop laughing/crying at this. But then I heard him say “Mommy sad” and the laughter part of my laughing/crying went away. I think we share the empathy superpower. He was crying because I was ‘crying’ and then I couldn’t stop crying because he was crying about me ‘crying’.

We could’ve continued this crying cycle for a long time, if we hadn’t gotten the subject changed to talking about his day at daycare. *phew*

Overdue updates

Friday, June 8th, 2012

It’s been a while. Sorry about that! I’ve got legitimate excuses, but they don’t matter.

Ian’s two years old now and growing so much! In length, (not weight) and in his brain. He learns so quickly and is very curious. He loves to help, even when we don’t want help. I’m using this to my advantage on new Saturday morning cleaning times. Last weekend he helped me sweep and wash –and dry– the kitchen floor. Next time I think I’ll hand him a duster. I hope that this time invested in showing him how to clean will pay off when he’s a little older and needs no guidance with how to help. Some day he might be able to show his little sister the ropes!

He’s stringing several words together now into near-sentences (“Ian all done supper”, “mommy supper all done too”). “Nian”=”Ian” and “all done” is basically one word when he says it, “ah-done”. I’m not sure how he learned the concept of “too” or to say “go away” instead of his previous “go”. I think he picks up most of his new language from hearing conversations at home and daycare.

He is very focused on the concept of possession. Not just the typical toddler “mine” but pointing out my clothes vs. Miles’s clothes when doing laundry. Or whose milk glass belongs to whom. “Nilk.” Mommy’s or daddy’s car. And saying bye bye to each item as he stops thinking about it or it leaves his sight. “Bye bye daddy water”.

We’ve recently gotten out the baby pool left us by the previous homeowners. Ian likes playing in it, and I like sitting in it. Though I wish I could float around in it.

Baby sister is kicking and squirming and growing and all things babies do when they’re not ready to join this world quite yet. We’re looking forward to meeting her, and I’m feeling quite anxious about how her arrival will change our family. Ian puts his hands on my tummy, though he hasn’t felt her moving yet. He’s excited but also doesn’t understand and sometimes will say “no, no baby” when we’re talking to him about her. He’ll be a great older brother and an eager helper when she arrives.

How we saved $200 on our dental bill

Monday, January 30th, 2012


Our dentist was doing a promotion for Feeding South Dakota. For every can you bring in to donate in January, they will apply a $1 credit toward your dental bill. The credits will not expire. Talk about a deal! They called it the Souper Bowl (it ends the day after the Super Bowl), and it’s a great way to benefit those in need and save on your dental work.

Since we don’t have the greatest dental insurance, we’ve been putting off our dental work for a little while–hoping our plan changes this summer. After we saw this promotion, we decided to figure out how we could get the most for our money, while spending an amount we’re comfortable with. We figured out Sam’s Club had the best deals (Hunts tomato sauce came to about $0.63 per can, Hunts diced tomatoes came to about $0.67 per can and Green Giant sweet peas came to about $0.68 per can–Walmart’s best deal was $0.68 per can on their Great Value brand). So we ordered for in-store pick up (free) from Sam’s Club — 40 12-pack cases of the tomato sauce, 5 8-pack cases of the diced tomatoes and 10 8-pack cases of the peas (we could have saved a few cents doing more diced tomatoes–or all tomato sauce–but it just seemed like a lot of tomatoes to me, so I chose more peas since the savings were small.)

In total with tax, we paid $410 for 600 cans ($600 dental bill credit) which will give us a savings of $190 on our next bill AND help feed families in South Dakota. Win!

 Update 02/01/2012:

Here’s an article from the Argus Leader on the event.

Here’s a picture they posted (our cans are in front) on their Facebook page. Five days left and up to 3500 cans. (click the picture to go to their FB post)

First Fridays

Monday, November 7th, 2011

There’s a host of events that happen downtown on the first Friday of every month. This month we decided to take advantage of free admission to the Kirby Science Discovery Center at the Washington Pavilion. (Actually, we tried last month but couldn’t find parking anywhere downtown, due to First Fridays and an event at the Pavilion. This month we went there right after work, parked, walked to get supper and walked to the Pavilion. Still, because of First Fridays and White Christmas at the Pavilion, the parking was still pretty sparse at 5:45 p.m.) We ate at New York Express Pizza downtown (yummy and inexpensive–spent less than $10 total for the three of us!) and then walked to the Pavilion. There aren’t many things in the science center for kids Ian’s age, but there is a “younger than 7 years old” area where we spent our evening. We also visited one of the art galleries (I knew a couple of the artists on display and wanted to see them before the exhibit ends) and the children’s art room.

New York Express Pizza


Ian, telling us how excited he is to be at New York Express Pizza


First Fridays at the Pavilion

First Fridays at the Pavilion

First Fridays at the Pavilion

First Fridays at the Pavilion

First Fridays at the Pavilion

First Fridays at the Pavilion

First Fridays at the Pavilion

First Fridays at the Pavilion

Halloween Treats

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

Ian moved up to the Toddler A room last week, and kids in that room were encouraged to bring treats for Halloween. (The letter sent home noted that they are peanut-free and there are kids in the room who are allergic to peanuts (read: Ian) so please bring treats that are store-bought and peanut-free.)

Of course, I couldn’t think of anything that’s really toddler-safe as far as candy goes (sure there are some candy that are probably OK, but most are a choking hazard because of size or chewiness.) And almost anything that is chocolate was manufactured in a plant that processes peanuts, so Ian needs to stay away from the chocolate bars even if they aren’t a peanut product. (FYI, Hershey’s manufactures their peanut candy in a separate facility, so their plain milk chocolate bars are OK. Their allergy warning is for soy, milk and almond. Hershey’s is also the only brand of chocolate chips we can buy.) There were some items that we decided were OK for Ian, since we’d be watching him eat them and they were peanut free: smarties, Rice Krispie Treat bars, milk chocolate Hershey’s bar. Other items I thought weren’t toddler appropriate (Jolly Ranchers) or weren’t safe peanut-wise (Crunch bars). He enjoyed the things he could eat, and as long as we offered him an alternative, he didn’t have much of an issue handing over some of his trick-or-treat candy either. And when he woke up this morning, he didn’t remember how much candy he gathered last night (we only went to 5 houses anyway!) Miles’s coworkers are well-fed today.

Woah. This was not going to be a post about his peanut allergy.

It WAS going to be a post about what we sent for his treats. Kool-aid Playdough. Recipe below.

Kool-aid Playdough

Kool-aid Playdough

(recipe originally seen here)

  • 1-1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 2 packets Kool-aid (she suggests 2 packets for sweeter smelling and brighter playdough, but you could do only 1 packet)
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil (or canola or olive)
  1. Mix flour, salt and Kool-aid in a medium-sized bowl.
  2. Add boiling water and oil. Mix with a wooden spoon until sticky.
  3. When not too hot, pick it up and knead like you would while playing with playdough to further mix in the dry ingredients.
  4. Store in air-tight containers. They will keep for a few months.

Pro tip: when making more than one color, boil several cups of water and then as you are ready to mix one color, ladle the boiling water into your measuring cup. This way, you don’t have to keep measuring water + bringing it to a boil for each color.

This cost me $0.10 per batch (I got the Hy-Vee brand Kool-aid, which was 10 for $1) because I have everything else on hand. I made 2 batches of orange and one of green and was able to make over 18 ‘servings’ for daycare. When I made this recipe for Ian a few months ago, I did several half-recipes in different flavors/colors and it made plenty.

With Kool-aid, my first fear was that it would stain horribly. To  my pleasure, it does not stain your hands, bowl or spoon. I have not experienced stained clothes. I have experienced Ian having some pieces on his feet and small pieces get rubbed into the carpet — it comes out with normal carpet stain remover.

For Ian’s treats, I formed them into pumpkin shapes and put them in bags. I used a sharpie on the bag to draw Jack-o-lantern faces and attached a little label explaining what it was and the ingredients (they look like sugar cookies).

This playdough is made of edible items, but I would not encourage kids to eat it. I tasted it, just for knowledge’s sake, and it is nast-ay. Like eating ocean water. The Kool-aid does NOT save it. So though it is technically edible, I’d call it non-toxic. It is very sweet smelling though.