Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Adventures With Dad...

Do you remember way back, when Chad put Max in the bathtub with his socks on? Like he filled the tub, put him in, THEN noticed that the child still had his socks on?

Well, he was at it again last week when he put his dinner, Lasagna, right on his place mat... you know, no plate!


But if I'm honest, there is just some things that Dad's do that a mom (or this at least this mom) would never do... for instance, building a fort!

A couple weeks ago, as I was heading out for a girls night and leaving Chad with all three boys for the evening, they were dragging out every blanket and pillow that we owned. Naturally, the control freak/bossy pants in me wanted to give them a few pointers, such as:

1) Scotch tape, really? On my finished chair?

2) Why use my perfectly nice and breakable flower pot for weight when there are 100 other choices?

But really, who can argue with such great fun? And only with Dad, would you lay in here, and play with your toys while carrying a flashlight and wearing a head lamp.

And they were even sweet enough to make a space for baby Jack :) No boy left behind!

And that is why boys needs Dads... to show 'em fun stuff and totally goof up and do it "wrong" so that they'll know that despite what Mom says, doing it "wrong" isn't necessarily the end of the world-- and even with Lasagna NOT on a plate and even with socks in the bathtub, you might still learn a thing or two... and you'll definitely have fun!

Now you want to know why boys need moms? Obviously there are 700 million billion trillion reasons,  but in this case, they need moms to fold all the blankets up and put everything away the next morning, because that task is obviously not enough fun or excitement for dads. That way, everyone is ready for the next time that a fort is necessary :)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Happy 6 Months!

In all the hustle and bustle of having our small group over for Thanksgiving last week and packing for our trip to Indy to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family, I never posted about Jack's first 6 months of life. But they were not forgotten!  He had his lovely visit to the doc and I kissed his sweet cheeks 6 months worth, all day long!

It's crazy to think that this little bundle who caught us off guard by arriving 5 weeks early, who came home so tiny and so full of reflux that he would projectile vomit all over me every feeding, and who caused me the most pain I've ever experienced in my life (I still hate the word and the thought of "thrush") would turn out to be the most sweetest, cuddliest, best baby. But that he is! My Jack is so laid back and easy-- I wish I could claim this trait as my own, but that wouldn't be further from the truth! He's full of laughter and smiles and he's always up for being held, rocked, snuggled, carried, kissed, and/or all of the above :)

His hair is finally coming in with a vengeance... but it's white and see through, so pictures make it look like I'm lying, but I do have witnesses that can attest to this fact. He loves playing on the floor, but will flip himself right back over and scream if he ever accidentally rolls to his belly. He loves overhead toys and batting them, he loves rattles on his wrists and shaking them, and he can scoot off any blanket, regardless of size and location in about 3 minutes. He has even ended up under the couch! But his favorite thing to do? Suck on his big toe-- seriously! Like for long periods of time-- it makes Gabe and Max (and me!) giggle every time. He can even get his socks off and his foot to his mouth when he's in his carseat. Now that's what I call flexible! And although his head is still big (that is my trait, sorry Jack!), he's losing a lot of his chub and rolls. His torso is very thin, but there is still a leg roll on one leg, and his cheeks are still full of goodness, Praise the Lord!

I love how more and more of his personality is coming out-- he wants to be part of the action and in this house full of boys, there is lots of action! He doesn't really want to be left alone, but doesn't need much attention if he's in a position just to sit and watch. But if something ever doesn't go his way, he has this scream that lets everyone know. It's not a cry at all, but instead this high-pitched pterodactyl-like noise. It translates to "fix this situation or give me what I want (aka food) right this very minute. And it cracks us all up. I usually look at him and say "AT-TI-TUDE!" and he smiles and my heart melts and we all live happily ever after.

On Jack's 6 month day, he was 26.5 inches long (50th percentile), 15lb 15oz (which has actually fallen to the 25th percentile) and his head was 17.5 inches (which is close to the 75th percentile). The doctor actually questioned if he was getting enough food-- then turned from her computer screen to glance at him and answer her own question with a grin-- then said "I guess he's just leveling back out!" He loves eating solids-- although I have to hide green beans among orange veggies because they literally give him the he bee jee bees! His favorites are acorn squash and butternut squash and anytime he gets in his chair and can see the bowls of food he starts dancing and cooing and whining from excitement all at the same time. He is nursing again in the middle of the night- it started with his last ear infection and has been part of his routine since- but he eats like he's starved around 3:30/4am so I'm not really fighting it. Plus, due to being a stay at home mom, if just doesn't feel like that big of deal, and it takes 7 minutes, tops, so I'm going with it for now. During the day, when it's time to eat, he gets very distracted-- he'll eat for a few then pop off to check out the world-- the only time I can tell if he's getting a full feeding is if I put it in a bottle- but he never cries for food early, so I guess he's good?! But honestly, I'm sure this newfound nosiness is the reason for the middle of the night feed. (Anyone have any secret tips for this??)

Jack still wears size 2 diapers- we'll be in those for a while! And he's still rocking the 3-6 month clothes, although the length is going to eliminate the 3's and send him just to 6 months within a couple days, for sure. Jack is also sucking his hands a lot and has had a couple low grade fevers over the past couple of days- so he may be getting ready for a tooth-- but who's to say for sure?!

Jack loves his brothers- I can be holding him on my hip and all of a sudden he's cackling-- I look up to see that Max or Gabe is doing something that is cracking him up. They both still ask to hold him regularly, Gabe will actually carry him around, and they both stop to give him kisses throughout the day too. Chad has started sneaking off with Jack, to a quiet room with a bed and laying there talking to him- I think he's taking in his coos and wonderfulness. Jack still prefers me, Chad, or Eli over everyone else- but he's doing much better with his separation anxiety. The past 2 weeks at church have been great and I'm going to take him to the gym today... we'll see if I make it through my whole class :)

Jack you are one loved little boy-- from the top of your mostly bald head to the bottom of your little clammy roll chubby feet. You make my heart swell with pride and gratefulness every time I see you. Your smile is absolutely amazing and your sparkling eyes continue to dazzle me daily. You are such a precious gift to me and our family that I seriously spend our prayer time every night solely thanking God for you and kissing your nose. Thankfully, God doesn't mind me pausing the bedtime prayers to kiss your sweet face. I keep trying to wrap my mind around the fact that He loves you even more than I do-- then I remember that He gave his son's life for you-- and that says it all. I couldn't do that. Just loving you reminds me over and over again what Christ did for us on that cross. God loves you immeasurably more than you and I will ever be able to understand, He gave of his son so that He can spend forever with you- and there is NOTHING you can do Jack that will make Him love you more or less. You are fully, completely, and wholly loved by the amazing and Holy God of the Universe.

I love you my Jack, sweet as sugar baby Jack, my Jay Bay! Happy 6 months!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Max is funny

Exhibit #1: He loves his vitamins and he tells me that he "needs" one everyday... except that he calls the spidamins... and anytime he sees his Spiderman slippers, it reminds him of his spidamins... but they don't have Spiderman on them, they are Flintstone Vitamins!  Funny!

Exhibit #2: I usually strive for a healthy pantry but sometimes Publix puts things on sale that make me buy them... like say Chocolate Lucky Charms... but they promise whole grain, that counts, right??

Anyway, Max eats them, dry, on the couch, and he picks out all the "flashmillows"-- yep, the flashmillows. And he leaves the chocolate part. Who leaves chocolate?

This guy!

He's funny!

Exhibit #3: One of Max's favorite things is his bicycle. He rides it pretty much anytime he's awake and home. But when he gets sent to bed or nap, you can always find funny things in his trunk-- check out the random junk in his trunk:


Exhibit #4: In true Noblitt form, Max loves shoes. He gets this from me and I got it from my Dad. It's hereditary-- the boy can't help it. All his shoes have names and purposes, and he'll tell me which ones he "needs" each day, depending on the activity. And when he gets new shoes (usually from my Dad, which makes them "Pop shoes") he is very proud and point his toe and twists and turns his foot to display them to anyone who will look. He also likes to wear any shoes that he finds lying around, and if I'm feeding Jack on our bed, without fail, Max will head into my closet and try on all my shoes-- mainly the high heels. And his favorite ending point for the shoes that he is currently in love with is at the base of my shower... again, Funny!

And I pretty much find myself cracking up all the time... even though I've threatened to put him up for sale lately, I think I've decided to keep him :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

From the Wagon to the Water

I mentioned that last week, Chad went to Texas to visit his grandmother, who is known to us as Yang Yang. We knew she was close to the end of her life and while he was there, she actually went to be with the Lord. She was a wonderful woman, who lived a very full life, which leads us to Chad's first guest appearance on the blog. Max and Jack are so young, that they won't remember this dear woman, so Chad put his memories into writing to share it with them:

My last grandparent went to be with Lord on November 2nd.  We called her Yang Yang, and she was my mom's mom.  She was born in Pittsburgh, PA in a wealthy family. However, after the great depression, she lived in the typical middle class family.  I always thought she carried herself like royalty.  She was a career woman, before it was popular.  She spent almost 40 years in the insurance business, with the same company.  She was the great woman behind a good man for over 50 years.  

I have a lot of fond memories of Yang Yang and Pap Pap.  That is what we called my mom's parents.  During the summer time, from about age 5 through age 14, I spent just as much time with them as I did my parents.  They had a lake house on Lake LBJ, in Granite Shoals, TX.  It was paradise for me and my two brothers. We would usually leave around 5 o'clock, after they got off work and stay the weekend.  It was about 90 miles from their house.  We would pile in the green station wagon and head up, listening to big band music and hopping all around the back of the wagon.  Yang Yang loved to sing to us.  When we arrived at the lake, we would run straight from the wagon to the water.  Half of the time I was fishing, and the other half swimming.  I usually  spent the mornings with Pap Pap.  He would always get up at the crack of dawn and make his eggs and potatoes with coffee.  We would go rabbit hunting, take a ride on the scooter, or just go for a nice walk over the granite hills and through all the blue bonnets. 
I remember the house was always so welcoming when we ran in from the lake.  Food was always ready, or it was delivered to the dock in the form of a pyramid of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, cut in fourths. She made the best spaghetti on the nights when my friends would come over and play cards with us.  She was very competitive and she loved to play cards!  She taught me and my brothers how to swim, because she was amazing in the water. 

Well, as time passed, the lake house got sold.  Yang Yang and Pap Pap continued to travel a lot, and we got very involved with high school sports.  They always showed up at my games to cheer me on, through high school and college.  After I graduated from TLU, I moved to Orlando, FL.  They came out one time and visited. I was working at WDW, so I took them to the Magic Kingdom and we went to dinner at some really cool places.  Over the years, I would see them about twice a year.  Pap Pap went to be with the Lord in 1998, and Yang Yang moved up by my parents in the Texas hill country.  It was great to have her so close when we went to visit.  She would always call me to talk about the Spurs. I remember when they won their third championship, Lauren and I were on our way to Los Angeles, and I couldn't wait to land to talk to her about it.  

We try to always make it back home to spend Christmas with my family. My mom called and said I might want to come home early because Yang Yang was not doing well.  Lauren started looking at flights for us to go out in a couple of weeks, Gabe just returned from a TX about a month earlier, so he was going to stay home.  After talking to my mom several times, we decided that I should get there asap.  Lauren and I thought it would be best if I got there and talk to her, then she could bring the family for the funeral.  I arrived in TX on Tuesday November 1st and was at Yang Yang's bedside at 12:25 pm.  I immediately told her how much I loved her.  We starred at each other, smiles on our faces.  I ran my hand through her hair as she asked me about Lauren and the boys. We sang a song that she used to sing to us as we were driving to the lake.  After about 2 hours of sitting by her side and having visitors in and out, she needed a nap.  We went to lunch and she closed her eyes for the last time. Me, my mom, dad, brother, and sister in law we standing by her side and holding her hands when she took her last breath. I learned more about her in the last two hours of her life than I did the previous 25 years.

One of my favorite songs is "Blessed be Your Name". It talks about the ups and downs of life, and how the Lord is steady.  No matter what happens, Blessed be the Lord.  It says that every blessing poured our, should be turned back in praise.  So, I want to praise the Lord for Yang Yang's life.  She was a blessing poured out on everyone she encountered.  Thank you for her dignity. Thank you for her talents.  Thank you for her generosity.  Thank you for her strength.  The way she lived her life was an inspiration to me and my family.  Thank you!

In Honor of Ruth Mae Lehner... December 19, 1920 to November 2, 201, We love you and are so grateful for your life!

(This picture was taken at her 90th birthday party last year- can you see where my boys get their beautiful blue eyes? :) )

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time, there was a bowl of red and black beads on our dresser. They usually stayed out of sight and therefore never entered the mind of our two year old... until last week, when I sat him up on the dresser so I could tie his shoes and he spotted them and immediately fell in love with them and needed them. I paused momentarily, wondering how safe this was, and then decided he could handle it-- especially since he isn't really known for putting stuff in his mouth.

The two year old sat in the middle of our living room and lovingly transferred bead by bead to a glass jar. He sat there for a long time and I got to work on our Christmas lists. I glanced up and noticed him heading towards his ear with a bead-- so I stopped him and explained that we don't put beads in our ears, then I went on to explain that we don't put anything in our ears. He listened intently, nodded accordingly, and I smiled knowing that I had just performed my motherly duties for the day.

About 5 minutes later he came up and told me he hurt his nose, while pointing to his upper lip. I surveyed said boo boo, and noted that it looked absolutely normal. Picked him up to easy the whine and simultaneously answered a phone call from my Dad. I carried Max as I paced around the house, talking to my Dad for about 10 minutes. He never whined or winced or acted like he was in pain at all, so I just assumed it had been a normal bump and that he had already forgotten about it.

When I hung up the phone, I started to put him down, and he freaked, pointing to his nose again. AND it was at that exact moment that I knew. I pushed on the sides of his nose, lunged for the nearest flash light and took a little looksie... and low and behold, there was a bright red bead just far enough up his nose that I couldn't get it out. He blew his nose many times into a tissue, he even sneezed several big man-sized sneezes... to no avail. I contacted his pediatrician and they said I need to get in the car and head that way right away.

Max freaked. I mean hysterical, thrashing, and gnashing of teeth. It was so bad while we drove that I had to call Chad for reinforcements.

And then the child cried so hard that he fell asleep at 10:45 in the morning.

Chad beat us there and was able to get Max out of the car and into the doctor while I parked and lugged baby J inside. He curled up against Chad like he's a cuddly person... he is not. And he didn't want his Daddy to put him down. I also tried to bribe him with lollipops and his paci-- of which he took both but it didn't really settle him down. Once we saw the doc, she immediately informed us that this bead was just the right size that is if went the other way (up into his sinuses) that it would be BAD. And in the next breath, she told us she wouldn't be able to get it out and we would need to see a specialist.

They called and made us an appointment at an ENT just down the road. Once again, we waited for the doctor and Max was fine-- but as soon as the doctor actually walked in the room, all the crazies erupted once again. Chad had to sit with Max in his lap, and hold him down with his legs and arm. For obvious reasons, this made Max even more mad! That doctor wasn't able to get it either and had to call in the top dog-- who happened to be like 7 ft tall, and wearing a big contraction on his head- made for seeing in the nose better, obviously. He tried to fish it out, with the help of many tools and suction things, but it wasn't budging.

(You may be thinking that he looks happy in these pictures, that's because the doctor wasNOT in the room!)

Then he said the words, "If it doesn't work this time, we'll have to book an OR, but this is much preferred over an OR" (just in case I was confused?!?!?!?) And then like magic, he slid it out. Chad and Max were covered in sweat, and me and Max were covered in tears. The little bead that had been wreaking havoc for 4 hours was now out.

And we all lived happily ever after!

(Just in case you were wondering.... they told us several times that this kind of thing was normal and so I asked if it was more normal in boys and they said no-- it happens to girls just as often but that it usually Barbie shoes or lite bright pegs.....um, ouch!!!!!!!!!!)

And for good measure (and because he's cute) he is how Baby Jack supported us through it all--  by smiling and cooing!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Great Play date

You may remember that I mentioned a great big fun playdate a while back-- on my birthday actually. And I promised that details would be forthcoming, but let's just say that things got crazy-- Chad went out of town, my Dad came in town, then me and Jack went to join Chad in Texas, pshewwww, it makes me tired just typing it. AND I'm not sure how I kept up with laundry when I was working, but apparently it's my favorite pastime-- seriously, my people make a full load everyday- how is that even possible?

So about the playdate-- on my birthday, we planned a giant playmate at my house. My brother said something like "only a mother would invite 10 little kids to her clean house, before noon, on her birthday"- which just made me chuckle. My oh my how things change when you add small people to your brood :)

So around 9:30, birthday morning, the minivans and SUV's began arriving:

Danielle and Reed (plus baby Morgan in utero), along with cupcakes and birthday cake batter rice krispy treats (yum!)

Lisa and Haven, and baby Calder is utero.

Emily and Cole, Gavin, and Kendall plus baby in utero

Anna, Elizabeth Grace, and Evie

And my new friend Sara and her daughter Sadie. We randomly met at our local park and God SO wanted us to be friends- we're like the same and we kept running into each other until we changed contact info!

Meet the kids-- ALL 3 years old or under!











We played inside, we played on the driveway with our riding toys, we picnicked in the back yard, and we had a little birthday party :)

Here are the before and after pictures.... my house before playtime:

(that stain is courtesy of Max)

And here are the after pictures :)

And once everyone left and my babies went down for their naps, it only took me like 20 minutes to clean up. It was such a fun time, with fun moms and adorable children. We hope to keep doing it! 

P.S. This is NOT an exclusive group, so if you live nearby, let me know if you want an invite to the next play time :)