Friday, May 7, 2010

What a full, fabulous week

It really has been a big week, and a good one. We finished up last weekend well. After work I headed over to the gardens with my mom, sis, bro, and nephew and had such a nice time (Lowell had to work, boo). The boys loved pushing Jonny in the stroller, the tulips looked fantastic, and though cool it was very comfortable. We fed a duck (he stole all the koi's food), saw baby bunnies and baby owls with their mom, and C & D took tons of pics with their little cameras. Then we had a nice dinner and were home late for bed. Monday my mom and I went up to Ikea and thrilled yet again in free babysitting. We shopped for some cabinets (her laundry room, my mud room) and enjoyed lunch sans children. And they were having a great time and were happy to have Ikea Mac and Cheese and Meatballs to go. Good times.
Even better--while I was gone Lowell took our old cribs back to Baby Depot as they had been recalled. Hooray for a ward friend and Babycenter emails for alerting me to the recall! Honestly these cribs weren't in ideal condition, my kids are rough on furniture. Ask my living room couches and kitchen table--it looks like we are living in a hovel based on our furnishings. We're just going to replace when they are older. Anywho, I was hoping to piece together enough pieces to make 1 usable crib and Lowell was ready to just buy new for this baby. The fact that the cribs were even in storage was due to a lot of pushing on my part--my wonderful husband doesn't like clutter and doesn't like to store anything--he wanted to just chuck it all as soon as we moved the boys to big boy beds. For once, I was right (yes hon, I said for once, that means you are most often right). Due to the recall, Baby Depot accepted both of our used cribs and refunded us their entire purchase price! Can you believe that!?! I couldn't but now I have a gift card with $600+ on it to spend on little sister. She is going to get all new stuff! I am so happy. We need a new crib of course which will take a substantial portion of that, but now I can also get a new car seat (I think ours is expired), single stroller, etc. What a relief. We have set some of the tax return aside for such purchases but this eases things up a little and we can replace some other house items that need it as well. The Lord truly loves us.
So, shortly thereafter Grandma was over (such a big thanks to Lowell's mom and sis) and we were headed out the door. Me a little reluctantly, it is so hard to leave the boys, but I am glad we got to get away. I got my Cinnabon to eat on the plane and before we knew it we were in LA. I was pretty anxious as we arrived, I always forget what a bad traveler I am. I have a lot of anxiety in new places and around unfamilar people. LA is down right terrifying for me. Lowell was chill though so we got through the airport, got our rental car (more on that in a sec) and hurried to the nearest beach in hopes of getting there before sunset. Self Portrait near Santa Monica pier. I love the ocean, it is the only thing that could drag me from my mountains, though truthfully I still wouldn't go because I love living in a small town where our backyard neighbors are horses and goats. But I do love the ocean and walking down the beach at sunset was heaven for me.
Nearly 20 week pregnant me, I am poking my tummy out trying to look pregnant. Believe me, there's a full sized (for 20 weeks) baby in there. I just carry my babies low and inside I guess. I never measured big with twins, so maybe I'll measure small with just one. Or I'll pop one of these days and my already stretched out stomach will be massive. I guess we'll see.

So this was Lowell's rental car. It's his reward for driving an immasculating mini-van the rest of the time. He was beyond thrilled to be driving a yellow Camaro (like bumblebee on Transformers!). I was paranoid of theft and injury to said car, but it turned out fine. And it was comfy and had quite the engine purr. Mostly I loved seeing the smile on Lowell's face. I sure wish I could put one of these in the driveway for Father's Day. Alas, the paid for well-functioning beater (Honda Civic) will have to do.
Once in Anaheim we had an overpriced meal at Tony Roma's--not the best choice and crashed out pretty early.
Tuesday we got Jack in the Box for breakfast, yes this is a highlight for us, and got to the park just as it opened. It was busy, but the least busy of the past 3 visits. Who knows? The past two were supposed to be slow times, Feb and Oct and May should be busier, but I guess you never can tell. And it probably helped that we weren't riding most of the "big" rides due to that darn "Expectant Mothers Should Not Ride" line. Booo! The rides I could ride, we did, most of them twice. All in one day. We had no reason to go back another day even if we had the time. Worked out very nicely. All except for my poor choice in footwear (new sandals) which equated to multiple blisters and adjusting to heat (80 degrees) that we haven't seen in months, so I got hot and dizzy a few times. Lowell was very patient with me and said he was just happy to be able to finish a conversation without being interrupted by children.
We ate lunch at the Blue Bayou, the restaurant within the Pirates of the Caribbean ride if you aren't familar. We got our reservations 2 months ago, it's kind of a big deal. Here's the lighting there. I was surprised how very little you hear the diners from the ride and how little you hear the riders from the restaurant.
Me waiting for our meal and chugging the world's best Orange soda, yes it is better at Disney than anywhere else. We shared a Monte Cristo sandwich which was still more food than we could eat. First I had the gumbo which was fantastic, then the sandwich which was kind of like a sweet scone stuffed with ham and cheese. Kind of. With a boysenberry sauce to dip it in. It had potatoes and asparagus on the side and was truly just fantastic. Our waitress wasn't the best, which goes against everything I have read but that didn't change much. We'd go again, probably not until the boys are older will we bring them. Oh and it was cheaper than Tony Roma's.
Next we headed over to California Adventure and did everything there. Here's Lowell on Screaming (far right--hey, that's not an easy shot to get!). I got to ride my fav, Soaring over California and we waited through our longest line (40 mins) for Toy Story Mania, it really is fun. Chugged some more orange soda then headed back to Disney.
Yes we love the pineapple ice cream outside the Tiki room. We even went in and sat in the shade, enjoyed our ice cream, and then left without actually going into the Tiki room. The kids love it, us not so much. It was interesting the rides we skipped that the kids enjoy.
We got one last self-portrait, did some shopping and walked back to our hotel which was graciously right across the street. We ate the rest of our Tony Roma's, watched Lost and passed out.
We left early the next morning and panicked at the security line at LAX, but made it with plenty of time. Happy to be home in my peaceful Salt Lake valley and even more so in Utah County. I am sheltered and lame, but I'm okay with that. Most of all I was happy to be home to these boys:

We brought them Indiana Jones stuff and they were thrilled! It still goes everywhere with us. We were so tired still but it was nice to be home.
Thursday Lowell and I went to my 20 week ultrasound.

Little sister is decidedly a girl, hooray! Again I would be thrilled with a boy as well, but we were pretty sure it was a girl, so it was nice to not have to change. Most of all I was thrilled to hear everything looks okay with her and everything appears to be in the right place. There were a couple of shots the tech couldn't get, so I'll have another u/s in 3 weeks. Hopefully I can get a profile shot.
Thursday night we went to Farm country and had fun feeding and watching the baby animals, there was a baby pony that was SO cute! Just happy family time.
Then this morning was the UVMOM play group at the gardens. It was a little crazy and hectic and the boys weren't perfectly behaved but it did go well and I was pleased with how they did. There are a couple of new features to the children's garden (yet again improving on what I already love) and the boys loved it! Then we played by the waterfalls at the big garden for a little while before heading home:

LOVE this shot of Carter

And then I came to work, that should bring us back up to date. But what a full great week! Tomorrow I have my traditional mother's day lunch with my mom at the Trellis Cafe (at the Gardens again)--love it! Plus a soccer game and hopefully going to Lagoon. And Sunday will be more Mother's Day activities, with Lowell's family.

Here's a dilemma for you all. So my dad and I disagree on punishment styles. We refrain from hitting the kids, reserving it for severe circumstances and use time outs and discussions where possible. My dad thinks we are too easy on the kids and their "bad behavior" is a reflection of our poor parenting. I remember being scared of my dad as a kid and pretty well being beaten frequently by him. I don't agree with his approach. I feel judgement on our disciplining of our kids from more than just my dad, but I don't know that everyone understands the challenge that is there. ADHD kids have a hard time with impulse control and understanding the consequences of their actions. That could also be said of a lot of "normal" 4 year olds. You can't expect a 4 year old to remember what is right and wrong all the time. We work with them, we use discipline every single day. It is exasperating how often the boys are in time out or are being scolded. Anyway, my dad knows my stance on this, with the major caveat being, please do not hit my kids. That is something we reserve for our own judgement. So my dad took the boys to their soccer game while we were out of town and pretty much as soon as they walked back in the door, Davis told Lowell's mom that Grandpa smacked him. (It was about the first thing he said to us when we got home as well). My dad confirmed this to Lowell's mom and then went on to say how he has to discipline the kids because his daughter won't. My mother-in-law and sister-in-law were pretty upset about it, but what can they say? My sister who was there confirmed that Davis had opened the door while the car was stopped (parked), but was to be moving again soon. They aren't great in unfamilar cars, lots of things to push and the drivers often don't know all the child locks. Regardless, Davis should not have done that, and he does know better. However, my dad's reaction was overboard he screamed at him and slapped him twice in the face. He says it wasn't hard, but my sister said she could hear it from the front seat. So . . .I don't even know how to approach this. My dad has crossed a line that I have already discussed with him. He has defended his actions and degraded me as a parent. He insists that Davis will "never do that again" because he will remember being hit and know better next time. Not a chance, sorry, I wish it was that easy. Right now all I have decided is that my dad certainly can not be left alone with my kids, including those yet unborn. I have not spoken to him about it, and right now I am thinking we'll just have a time out where he doesn't see us for a while. They don't ever babysit them without us, this was a first in a long time, so there's no real loss except that the boys have enjoyed spending time with him with me present. Any thoughts???

Thanks again for reading, loves to the blogger world.


Kristen said...

does your dad not read your blog?! ;)

That's a tough situation you are in. We've also found ourselves in a situation where we can't allow my dad to visit my kids and it has made me physically sick dealing with it. But you need to do what you feel is right to protect your children at all costs. That's just my opinion.

Glad you guys had a fun little getaway!!

Terri said...

what a fun week! I am not much help with your dilemma, but I think a definite break from the situation. If it were me I would only allow your kids around your dad if you were there too, so that you can do any disciplining needed.hitting definitely doesn't teach any lessons just causes fear.
Have fun shopping for your little girl! there are tons of cute stuff!