Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Dear Baby,
(let me start off by saying anytime I call you "baby" I am almost always saying it with a little bit of venom in my voice.) I don't know why you felt the need to be up until 3:30 last night.  Maybe you wanted to catch some Late Night with Jimmy or something.  But, just an FYI, his show is over at like midnight or something.  Next time, let me know in advance and we'll just watch it on Hulu the next day.
almost-invested-in-that-go-the-f-to-sleep-book mommy

Darling E,
Thank you, thank you, for getting up with the other 3 people AND making coffee for me.  You will be showered with kisses when you arrive home.
Coffee Breath

Dear A,
Dude!  Your teacher conference totally rocked!  I was so surprised and so happy to hear that you've been doing so well.
High five,
maybe your tonsillectomy worked!

Dear dance studio where my daughter takes dance,
While I'm all for dressing little girls in frilly dresses once or twice a year, I am not sure that all of your costumes are completely age appropriate (or, lets be honest, appropriate at all.)  I'm thinking that its a little unwise to put black fish net tights, along with an outfit that looks like a corset, on a bunch of 14 year old girls wearing too much make up who are going to shake their boo-tay in front of a crowd of people.  But, who am I to be making an accusation that of those parents should have made? 
last year of dance for daughter

Dear weather,
I love you.
Forever and ever,
a warm weather friend

Dear Grass,
I hate you and your brownness.  Call me racist, but I'd rather you be green.
Every spring,
sweeping daily

Dear Isaac,
I'd love to stop taking you to the dr.  Seriously.  Stop getting sick. please.  now.
Hugs and love,
"is that ear draining again" mommy

Dear Eliza,
I hear you on the monitor.  Up there, cooing.  Probably looking all cute and cuddly stuff.  You don't fool me.  I know the "real" 3 am you.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The reason I ask

Thank you for your responses to my post on giftedness.  I wanted to get a feel for the general "feel" of what people think giftedness really is.

O is reading at a high level.  Very high, in fact.  She was reading at a level in October that surprised us then.  Her teacher sent home a progress report last week and told us the grade level along with the percentile.  Its well above what she was reading in October.  E and I teased that she may be reading at a level above my brother, who is 23. (Sorry, Dan.  We are just teasing. ;) )  My mom even joked that O may read above the level she read at when she graduated. 

She is also very good at spelling.  Her teacher asked us if she could give O harder words each week because she was getting them all right on Monday's pre-test.  There were a few other kids doing this too, so they do the words together.  Some of those words, though, give me pause.  (Of course, I've never been the world's best speller, either.  Thank goodness for spell check!) 

She's a few grade levels above for math and science as well (not nearly as high as her reading and spelling, though.)  But, like I stated before, does this make her gifted?  I think it just makes her "smart" or "above average". 

I casually mentioned the above to a few friends and they suggested she get into the gifted program. 
Sometimes, it seems that I am the only one with a very "conservative" definition of what gifted is. I tend to think of gifted as someone with the extreme ability to learn quickly, or already know things that haven't been taught to them. Thinking more along the lines of almost in MENSA or something.

First of all, I have no idea what grade that starts at. Second of all, I don't really feel like she's gifted (I know, I know. A mother is supposed to think the opposite. But, I'm a realist. She's an amazing student, and she's really smart. I just don't know if she's "gifted" and not just "well above average.") Third, I don't know that she would want to do something like that.  (She wasn't especially fond of the harder spelling words at first because it was different from what the other kids were doing.  Now that there are a few more kids doing it with her, she doesn't mind as much.)

Its not something I have to worry about, or even dwell apon for longer than a few days.  I guess I just wanted validation in the fact that I don't really consider her to be gifted or even want her to be labeled gifted.  Maybe in the future we'll have to revisit that, especially considering who her father is (we didn't have a "gifted program" at our school, but he got lots of "extra projects". Also purposefully got a B in one class one semester so he wouldn't have to be valedictorian. But, that's an entirely different post all together)  But, at her age, I prefer she's just "doing well for a first grader".

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A definition of "gifted"

I'm curious what other people think of this.  What would you consider gifted?

For instance, what grade levels of math, reading, etc. would you expect a "gifted" 1st grader to be doing?

I am finding that my definition and the definition of others aren't matching up.  I'll explain more after I read your responses.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

My baby model

I just have to share a picture from Eliza's modeling session yesterday.  My friend, Jen, is a photographer/crafter extraordinaire.  She makes all kinds of cute crochet beauties and amazing headbands.  (She's the one I got Eliza's Christmas hat from, among other things.)

So, here is Miss Cuteness:

I could just munch on those cheeks (well, if they didn't smell like rancid spit up.  its a good thing you can't smell through pictures.)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

I have a confession(s)

I peed on a stick today.  (I know, I know.  But, I had my first post baby cycle when Eliza was only 12 weeks old, and haven't had another.)  It was strange.  I actually wanted it to be negative.  I don't think I've ever felt quite like this while looking at a pee stick.

Maybe I'm coming to grips with this being our last baby.  Of course, there's the logistics of Eliza only being 3 months old.  That could have a lot to do with it. So, maybe its not grips I'm coming to, but the sanity that I'm trying to grip onto. 

It took me 4 weeks to lose 3 lbs.  Yet, only 2 days of dairy free brownies to gain it back.  I secretly am jealous of my husband who can lose that over night.   Or he "cuts out extra snacks" as in, eating one less cooking then he normally would, and loses that weight.  Sheesh.

I've actually worked up the courage to participate in some heated debates on facebook/in person.  I was typing my view with fervency and spouting off facts to my adversaries.  Wait.  Nope.  That WASN'T me.  But, I did read some and get pretty angry and shake my fist into the air, yelling "Arg!" whilst telling E what I'd LIKE to say that I clearly did not.

I want Eliza to suck her fingers. Or thumb. She is still not a lover of her pacifier.  Screw not stopping until she's 6 and needs braces when she's 12.  All kids need braces these days.  Plus, I think she's a doll when she does this.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Eliza's VCUG

Thanks for all of the prayers and well wishes.  It went so well!  Not only did she do great (she was the life of the radiology department that day) she didn't show any signs of kidney reflux!

Here she is in her hospital gown.

She didn't even cry when they inserted the catheter!  Amazing little girl!  (It was sort of funny because she DID cry during her renal u/s at the urologist's office.  Which, clearly, didn't hurt.  She was just plain mad.)

We still have to watch out for unexplained high fevers, but we're sort of professionals at fever watch. :)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Vesicoureteral Reflux testing for E.C.

Miss Eliz Claire will be undergoing her VCUG today to test for Vesicoureteral Reflux, (aka Kidney Reflux).  She'll have to have a catheter placed into her bladder and we'll watch it on an x-ray to see if it goes into the kidneys or out like its supposed to.

I don't think she's going to like it.

This is really all O's fault.  Okay, not really.  Its likely my fault for passing on lousy genetics.  But, since O had such a severe grade of reflux, all of the kids have to get tested.  The boys were lucky, and got to start with just a simple renal u/s to check for kidney damage.  (A did have to have the VCUG done since one of his kidneys was larger than the other.  That's a common thing in a lot of people, but also a symptom in kidney reflux kids.) With boys, it often isn't as much of a serious problem as it is for little girls.  Even if a boy has grade II reflux, he may never have an actual infection.  Its anatomy (again, a win for the girls, right?!?)

The odds of Eliza having it are 1 in 3.  I know statistics don't work this way, but I feel like she's screwed since her brothers don't have it (they'd be the 2 in 3) and that leaves the remaining 1 in 3 to her to make up. I keep trying to tell myself that she's got a 66% chance that she DOESN'T have it.  That's pretty good odds. :) 

I don't know why I get so worked up over this testing.  Not that any one wants their baby to have a birth defect, but if you had to have one, this would be the one to have.  (Mild reflux is easily treatable and most kids out grow it. )  But, I'm still praying complete health over my sweet baby. 

I'll let you all know what they say today.  Our appointment is at 12 cst, then her actual vcug is at 12:30, with an appointment with the urologist at 2 p.m. (Thank goodness E could come stay home with Isaac, the I-am-two-hear-me-roar boy.)  We will have immediate results from her testing today. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

monkey pajamas in the rain

My older kids take the bus to school almost every day.  Even when it rains.  Today, unfortunately, it was raining.  Isaac has to come with us on the mornings that he is awake (really, this is almost every morning).  The last few mornings, I let him just wear his footed pajamas with no shoes to the bus stop.  (He walked on the side walk there, and its only a few houses down.) 

Well, today he wanted to attempt to head to the bus in the same manner- footed jammies with no shoes.  Obviously, we, as adults, know how that would've turned out.  Soggy, wet, dirty jammies.  Those jammies just aren't made for the rain.  So, O came up with a quick compromise between jammied feet and shoes- Isaac's rain boots! 

Tada!  He's all prepared.

When some one asks me how it is going with 4 kids, I almost always tell them "its great!"  It is.  Really, it is.  I wouldn't even think for long about trading in one of my kids, and I love having a larger family.  But sometimes, sometimes I feel so unprepared/under qualified for the very large task of running a home with 6 people. 

Its not the people themselves.  Its the chores that come with 6 people.  Its the laundry that has to be done all.of.the.time because I not only have a family of 6, I have an overly spitty baby who is an incredibly big DIVA who requires several outfits each day (not to mention the ones that E and I require from just holding her.  E changed outfits twice on Monday after holding little E for only 15 minutes.)  Its the dishwasher that has to be run every day, the trash that has to be taken out every day, the toilets that need cleaning every day, the mopping that needs to be done, you guessed it, every day!

Its not surprising that sometimes I feel like I'm in over my head a little bit.  That I'm not quite equipped for the job of running this house.  Like maybe I'm wearing footed pajamas to the bus stop in the rain. 

I wanted to end this post with a comment about how God is my rain boots, he helps me be prepared.  He is and he does.  But, with out all of the fluff, I want you all to know that even happy-love-my-big-family-mommas get overwhelmed with stuff.  Even happy-i-love-to-do-all-sorts-of-craft mommas get too much on their plates.  And, sometimes, its my own dang fault if I end up with soggy pajama feet.