Sunday, June 14, 2009

Tornados and Potatoes

This past week we had a tornado touch down in Flower Mound. The kids and I were just sitting down for a nice dinner and waiting on Daddy to get home from work. Little did we know that Derek was stuck in traffic on his way home, and his cell service was down because a huge storm system was moving through town. We got a warning phone call from Doug to stay in the house because a storm was moving in soon. Not five minutes later, I heard the tornado siren sound and Doug called to tell me to get the kids into an interior room. So here I was with two kids and two dogs in the bathtub with NO husband. I was trying not to show Claire and Carter how freaked out I was because I didn't want them to get upset, but then the power went out. We all lost it for just a little bit. Thankfully, the siren stopped and the power turned back on. We made it through the Flower Mound tornado that had touched down just a few miles from our house. Derek finally made it home from work but not without driving through what he called, "a war zone." A UPS truck was overturned on the freeway, a power line exploded right next to Derek's car, and Derek had to zigzag down the street to avoid fallen trees. After a cold, but still nice dinner, Derek and I decided to check out our house and backyard. Three panels of our back fence were down, one of the trees in our backyard was down, our iron patio furniture had flown across the yard and landed on top of our overturned grill, and our metal patio umbrella broke in half and flew away. With the help of Derek's dad and grandfather, we managed to get it all cleaned up and put back together this weekend.

Our fallen tree and two downed fence panels

Our other downed fence panel

Our severed umbrella pole

This Saturday morning, I took Claire over to Derek's grandparents' house to work in the garden. His dad and grandfather have been looking forward to getting Claire into some overalls to pick vegetables and dig up potatoes. She had a blast discovering all the plants in the garden, and she got to bring home everything she picked. Tonight I cooked up some fried green tomatoes and grilled zucchini and squash.

Claire with her squash

She was so proud of her two onions

Digging up potatoes

Finding tomatoes with Dooj

Claire with her bucket of goodies

Sunday, June 7, 2009

We're Ready for Pool Season

As the weather in Texas starts to warm up, we begin to get the pool itch. I love the feeling of jumping into a cool pool on a 100 degree day, especially after chasing two kids around all the time. Well for Claire, once a week simply isn't enough. She wants to get the blow-up pool out in the backyard every day. She even puts her floaties on over her clothes just to try to convince me to get us in our suits and outside. Here are some pics of Claire in her swimming attire. I also took one of Carter in the baby pool for the first time.

Claire in her "ballerina" pose

Matching goggles...check

Getting anxious


Carter enjoying his first dip

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Yay for Wall Decals!

After the kids went down for their naps today, I got to work decorating Carter's cranial band. I bought a wall decal pack from Target. I think it turned out pretty cute...what do you think? I am probably going to order some more, slightly nicer wall decals and try another design in a few weeks. I think it will be fun to change it up every once in a while.

Define: Brachycephaly

Brachycephaly refers to the condition where the head is disproportionately wide. Brachycephaly can result from the premature fusion of the coronal sutures or from external deformation (most commonly prolonged lying on the back -- a positional deformity). The head flattens uniformly, causing a much wider and shorter head. Increased head height is also common in children with brachycephaly.

For those of you who don't know, Carter was diagnosed with Brachycephaly at his two month appointment with his pediatrician. The flattening of the back of his skull (especially on the right side) is attributed to the five days he spent in the hospital with RSV at five weeks old. It certainly makes sense since I remember that he did not want to be held but wanted to lay on his back with his head turned to the right the entire time other than feedings. However, the pediatrician advised us to wait until his four month appointment before taking action (ie. getting a cranial band) because there was still a chance that his skull would correct itself.

At his four month appointment, it became clear that two months of straight tummy time and barely any time on his back had not changed the shape of his skull. Our pediatrician wrote a prescription for us to visit Star Cranial Center in Addison. After taking computer images of Carter's head, the center advised us to go ahead with a cranial band as well.

After much waiting (appointments are hard to come by) and a lot of red tape from the insurance company, we finally received his band today. I decided to go with blue so I can decorate it myself. So far, he only fusses when I am taking it off and putting it on again. Once it's on, he doesn't even notice that it's there. He's such a little trooper. By the end of this week, he will be wearing the band 23 hours per day. Yes, this includes naps and sleeping. He will most likely only have it off during bath time or if we go swimming. We're not sure how long he will have to wear the band as it all depends on how quickly he grows. The band doesn't physically shift the plates in his skull, but gives the skull more space or less space to grow in specific directions. It seems like four months is a pretty average length of time. However, Carter's brachycephaly is pretty mild, so you never know. Here are some pics of my little guy in his new head gear...

Doesn't the blue really compliment his eyes?!

From the back...

From the side...

Such a happy boy!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Videos from Claire's School Program

The Last Day of the First Year

I can't believe my baby finished her first year of school yesterday. It was so sad and exciting. I can't believe how fast she's growing up. Her school capped off the year with a wonderful program of graduation for the pre-K kids and singing and dancing from all the classes. The program was beach/summer themed, and Claire's classed danced with tie-dyed scarves to the song Wipe Out. Claire was doing all the dance moves. She was one of the only kids in the toddler group (the youngest class) that actually performed the dance moves and sang the words to the final song. She actually started singing this cute song at home, and I thought I would share the words with you...

"God made me, and I see that God made me to be a special me. There's no one just like me cause God made me to be a special me."

Isn't that the sweetest song?! The next post will be a video of her performance, but here are some pictures first...

Claire doing her best surf moves

Claire rockin' the upside down sunglasses

Claire waving her scarf with her class

Little Surprises Around Every Corner...

I wish all toys were labeled properly. If I had known there was a page of stickers hidden in this My Little Pony coloring book, I probably wouldn't have bought and I most certainly wouldn't have let Claire have it without supervision. This is what happened on our way to the grocery store the other day...

She was covered in stickers and insisted on wearing them into the store.

Happy 30th Birthday Derek!

Derek doesn't like a big "to do" about his birthday or anyone's birthday for that matter, but how could I ignore his 30th?! We kicked off the weekend with a trip to one of our favorite restaurants, Kenny's Wood Fired Grill. As usual, the food was awesome. I took along cards from me and the kids and a small gift bag. Little did he know how big the present inside was. I decided to get Derek a MacBook Pro laptop for his birthday. I knew it was something he would freak out over, and would absolutely love. Making it happen was a whole other story. Let's just say it took several failed attempts to make the purchase, and when it finally happened for me, it wasn't arriving until after our date night out. I now had to come up with an exciting way to give him his present without actually having the laptop. I knew the laptop wasn't the only thing Derek would be happy with for his 30th birthday, so I went online and printed out pics/info of a bunch of things that could be his possible present. I made him open each envelope, and each time he thought, "Either this is it, or she's getting me all of these. Which would be crazy...and expensive!" He just kept racking his brain the whole time. Each paper had a sticky note that said "lift here," and underneath them it said things like "yeah right, this isn't your present." Finally, he got to a wrapped box, and opened the paper with the pics of the laptop. Underneath the final sticky note it said, "Happy Birthday! Seriously! I'm not kidding!" He was so excited. It actually ended up working out really well because his laptop showed up at our house on his actual birthday! So, it seems like he had the perfect birthday - night out at one of his favorite restaurants with his favorite person and he got his ideal birthday present - but I wasn't done yet. The next day was Saturday, and Derek got to hang out with his dad all day - they played a round of golf, ate lunch, went to the movies, etc. When he finally got home that evening, all of his buddies were here for a surprise, all dudes poker party. Dustin (Derek's brother) helped me set up his ideal mini poker tournament with all of his friends. I disappeared to the inlaws with the kiddos and left the guys to have the ultimate guys' night. So as you can see, Derek had a great 30th birthday! Happy birthday honey. Thanks for being the best husband, friend and daddy we could ever ask for!

The first envelope...

According to Derek, a "badass" office chair from IKEA...

The new Rockband game with all the instruments...

The new Amazon Kindle...

What could be next?...

A GPS for his car because he is soooo directionally challenged...

A treadmill with a built-in TV and iPod dock...

Opening the final gift...

It's a brand new laptop!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Carter Learns to Splash

Now that Carter's sitting up, I put him on the other side of his baby tub. Of course as soon as I did, he started splashing like crazy. Needless to say, we have moved his baby tub into the big bathtub now! Hope you enjoy this new video of our little guy splashing and talking. Oh, and there might be a little shot of Margot in here too :-)

New Easter Pics

The club's photographer took these two pics and just sent them out.

Easter in Austin

This Easter we went back to Austin to visit with Pops and enjoy the wonderful festivities at the golf club. They put on a wondeful show as usual - petting zoo, miniature horse rides and a magnificent egg hunt. We spent Easter Sunday enjoying a brunch at the clubhouse, then we changed clothes and headed out for a tour of the golf course. Pops got Claire her own set of clubs for Easter, and she enjoyed trying them out on the real golf holes.