Saturday, June 30, 2012

Hot, Hot, Hot

It's hot outside today. I mean record-shattering, hotter-than-blue-blazes hot. We're over 103 degrees right now, with an expected high of 106. The heat index is already around 110. We're under a heat advisory. We broke a heat record yesterday too. It's miserable!

Honey had to work this morning. He came home looking ill from the heat. He guzzled a lot of cold water, then took a cold shower and a nap.

Our exterminator came out this afternoon, and he had forgotten to pack any drinking water in his truck. I gave him the biggest plastic cup I could find filled with ice water and told him to keep it with him. And refill it often. He looked downright wilted from the heat.

Our A/C can't keep up. I have the thermostat set to 78, but it's struggling to keep the temp in here at 87. After Honey's nap, he went outside to hose down our A/C unit to help it cool off somewhat. We have all the lights off, the tv is off, the curtains are drawn, and I only have a crockpot going with some chicken for dinner. The boys woke up from their naps in pools of sweat. I had fans blowing on them, but those only do so much for little hot-blooded boys.

I gave the garden a good watering this morning. I peeked outside, and it seems to be doing all right. I'll probably have to water it again this evening.

Honey took our older boy to the store to pick up some extra oscillating fans. Hopefully that will help keep the air moving inside our house.

I'll let the boys play in a cool bath of water later this afternoon. And eat Italian ices. Maybe they should eat the Italian ices before their baths.

We were planning to go see the fireworks later this evening. That probably won't happen unless we sit in our van with the A/C blowing full blast. There's no way we could stand it outside, even once it's dark. The forecasters say it'll still be 105 tonight.

Honey just informed me that I should have plugged in the crockpot outside under the patio. (D'oh!) I'll try to remember that for tomorrow.

Makes me REALLY glad I'm heaven bound!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Recipe--German Brotchen

We lived in Germany from 2003 to 2006. It was absolutely our favorite Army assignment. If you ever get the chance to visit Germany, especially Bavaria, we highly recommend it. The highlight of your visit would be a good old-fashioned schntizel and some fabulous brotchen rolls.

I have tried making these rolls at home in the past, but they always failed miserably. The dough would deflate, usually.

But lately I had a serious craving for those awesome rolls. I tried another recipe, and this time they turned out a.m.a.z.i.n.g. Really, they were so close to the authentic rolls, I felt like I was back in Germany.

I thought I'd share the recipe. I used this one:

Here is a picture of some of my rolls. The recipe makes 24, but we've eaten about half of them since last night. (They're that good!)

On a completely unrelated note, I picked 4 tomatoes yesterday off of one bush. The four of them weighed almost 2 lbs!

I have to pick my tomatoes just short of being completely ripe, or else the accursed mockingbirds will peck little holes in them. (I despise mockingbirds.)

These tomatoes, sliced and sprinkled with a smidge of salt and pepper, would be heavenly inside the brotchen! (Add in some spinach leaves and cheddar cheese...Yummmmmmmmm.)

Okay, gotta wipe some drool off my keyboard now...

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Talk About Brotherly Affection!

I overheard my older boy tell my younger boy, "You can be Batman. I'll be Robin."

Now THAT'S sacrificial love, LOL.

Unashamed to Pray

The last time I took the boys to Wal-mart, they had a run-in with a bully in a stroller. My boys were in the cart, but a little boy in a stroller growled at my boys. Seriously, he gave them a mean face and GROWLED at them.

My older boy didn't like that one bit. He muttered under his breath, "Leave me alone!" The rest of the shopping trip was spent with me reassuring him over and over that I would not let that other boy "get" him.

We needed to go back to Wal-Mart this morning. My son remembered that incident and was worried that the boy would be there to growl at him again. So while we were walking through Wal-Mart, I told him that he should pray for that little boy to be nice to other people.

So right there in the shopping cart, in the middle of Wal-Mart, my son bowed his head, closed his eyes, and folded his hands to pray. His prayer went something like, "Dear Lord, please don't let that little boy growl at me. And help the people to love you. In Jesus' name, Amen."

Let me say, I was one proud Mama walking through Wal-Mart today. I think my kids were the best behaved ones there! (But I might not be completely objective, I'll admit it...)

Of course we didn't see the growling boy. So when we got back home, we prayed a prayer of thanks that the Lord answered my son with a "Yes" to his prayer.

What an awesome responsibility I have to shape my sons' reliance on Christ. As I pushed that cart through a crowded Wal-Mart while my little boy prayed aloud, the gravity of my job as their mother weighed very heavily and profoundly on my heart. I can nurture their innocence in the Lord and point the way to Him, or I can squash their tender spirits and sweet, pure view of God.

Somehow I didn't feel this heavy load when my daughter was young. I don't know why. Maybe the difference is merely that my sons are boys. They will have to lead their future families, provide for them, be the spiritual head of their homes, etc. Maybe the difference is that the world is a lot darker now than it was 18 years ago. Raising godly children becomes more of a challenge with each generation, I fear.

This song is an oldie, but it's a good reminder of why we need to walk close with the Lord. Our kids need godly examples of how to live.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Two Year Old Checkup

This is a serious venting rant. If you're wanting to read only nice things, this isn't the post for you.

My youngest son had his two-year-old well baby checkup today. No worries, my son is completely normal, in the 33rd percentile for height and weight. His head circumference is in the 99th percentile, but all my kids have big ol' noggins.

But dealing with most of the staff at the clinic today was a nightmare! First, the receptionist told me a joke with a full-on cuss word in it. It was soooo unprofessional. I didn't laugh, I just gave her a confused look, like "Really? Did I just hear you say that?!" And she didn't even get the hint, because she proceeded to tell me a second joke with another foul word in it. I just told her that I needed to find a seat in the waiting room and left to sit down. I was completely unimpressed with the lack of professionalism in her.

The wait was okay. My son got a compliment from an older lady about how sweet and well-behaved he was. (This was the second compliment my sons got this week, it did my heart good!)

The nurse who took my son's vitals was awesome. She was one of my o.b. nurses when I was pregnant with him, so it was neat to visit with her again.  She was really good with my son, too. He didn't like getting his vital signs taken, but she talked to him, and he talked back. (Mostly with a "no" to her questions like "Do you want to take your temperature?" or "Let's take your blood pressure now!") Once he told her straight up, "No. I'm fine!"

The doctor who performed the exam was either a complete idiot about a two-year old's development benchmarks, or too hurried to do his job right. He was rushed the whole time, even though he spent a whoppin' three whole minutes with my son. (sense the frustration?)

And he was asking off the wall questions like, "Does he talk in complete sentences yet?"

Really? I mean, my kid just turned two years old, how complete do the sentences need to be? I answered, "Well, sort of." He responded, "How many words does he string together?" I answered, "'Daddy go bye-bye 'is pretty standard. He also says 'Mommy, see that?'" The doctor didn't seem too impressed.

He also asked if he was potty trained yet. (Uhmmmm, NO! He just turned two!) I told him that all the reading I've done states that kids with duplex kidneys are notoriously difficult to potty train, and I was going to wait until my son was 2 1/2 before I started potty training. I didn't want to make the process more frustrating than necessary.

Then he asked if my son had seen the dentist! (Really?) I told him no, most dentists I've known don't see kids until they're four years old unless a parent thinks there's a problem. Then the doc informed me that our town has pediatric dentists. (Oh really?! Who'da thunk it?~As you can probably tell, I was getting pretty frustrated at this point.) I told the doc that I'd ask my dentist if my son needed to be seen.

Then he asked me if I brush his teeth! (Of course I do!) "Dental hygiene is a big soapbox of mine," I said. I brush my kids' teeth the minute they poke through their gums. The doc just said, "okay." I knew my son's mouth was clean except for the goldfish crackers he'd been eating in the waiting room. But seriously, it's not like his teeth were plaque-ridden. I was a little insulted with the doc.

Then he felt his neck lymph nodes and asked if we'd ever seen an ENT about the knots. (Seriously? All he had to do was look at my son's records to the last doctor's visit we had. The ENT notes would have been the first thing he saw!) I told him yes, but the ENT said the knots' sizes were within an acceptable range.

Then he asked if I had any questions and left.

This, my friends, is managed medicine at its finest.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Funnies from my boy

We've been practicing the correct pronunciation of his K and G sounds lately. He tends to "front" them into T and D sounds. But we are practicing, and making progress.

A few days ago, he was practicing a word and got frustrated with me asking him to repeat it over (and over, and over). He finally said as sweetly as he could, "I'm tired of saying that word. Can you please stop talking now, so I can watch TV?"

He made a mess of his Sunday lunch. As I went to clean it up, he protested, "Hey! Don't mess up my mess!"

I was writing his two-year-old brother's name on a sheet of paper. He didn't see me writing it, he only saw the finished product. He shouted out, "Hey, he can write his name now!"

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Who are you, and what have you done with my kid?

I've mentioned in earlier posts that my kids and pets are currently or have been at some point deathly terrified of the vacuum cleaner. Even when my daughter was in junior high, I can remember her running to the sofa and tucking her feet up under herself when I turned on the vacuum cleaner. She recently informed me that she was afraid it would suck up her toes. (That girl is strange, she must take after Honey...cuz everyone knows I'm 100% normal.)

Yesterday my older boy was playing outside in his "superboots," which somehow got filled, I mean FILLED with sand and dirt. And he did what all boys do--he dumped his boots out onto the living room carpet! But he's such a sweet boy, when he realized he made a mess, he went to his room, found his toy vacuum (aka: his desensitization therapy tool, LOL), and he tried to clean it up for me. Of course, it's a toy vacuum, so it didn't really clean it up. I got out the real vacuum and began cleaning it up for real.

Oh my, that was the wrong thing to do! He wanted to use his vacuum to do it by himself! I felt terrible that I ruined his project, so I let him try the real vacuum.


He was smiling so hard he had tears in his eyes!

Today during lunch, he asked if he could use the "big vacuum" again. After naptime, I answered. (This could be the beginning of a chore chart!)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Aren't These Pretty?

Some people think that a veggie garden isn't "front yard worthy." I picked these radish blossoms today from some radishes that I didn't pull up in time, and I thought they were too pretty to throw away.

I think they'd be pretty in any front yard flowerbed!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Terrificly Two, and a Scaredy Cat

Guess who turned 2 yesterday?
This little guy, that's who!
He is on a Batman craze right now, so Honey bought him this mask for one of his gifts. At first I thought it was a bit scary looking, but once he put it on, I think it looks kinda goofy and cute.

 Even his big brother wanted to wear it.
(He dressed himself yesterday, don't judge. LOL)

Among his gifts was this Batman t-shirt from Auntie Gretchen, and an awesome piano keyboard from Grammy!

My kids are stereotypes. Here are my two boys dressed up with a Batman mask and Batman t-shirt, playing with helicopters and fire trucks. Here's my teenage daughter, painting her nails.

This was taken a few days ago. They are so utterly and totally into the whole superhero thing! (Yes, I know their masks are on upside down. Otherwise they fall down too far over their noses so they can't see through the eyeholes, LOL)

My mom bought these rain boots to help complete the whole Superhero ensemble. He calls them his "superboots." Even in jammies, these two boys are SUPER!

This morning, Toby the cat got totally freaked out. I couldn't figure out what frightened him. But his back arched, his hackles were standing up, and his tail hairs were completely on end. He was frozen stiff with fear. It took me a second, but once I figured out what he was scared of, I laughed... Here's the culprit:

That mask totally freaked out the cat! (Who could be scared of a cutie pie like this?!)