Thursday, December 10, 2009

The New Fashion in Nose Jewelry

Saturdays are one of my favorite days of the week. I don’t have to get up to an alarm. I don’t have to change out of my jammies. I don’t have to run around in panic mode while I get five kids dressed and to the school on time. Saturdays are my “breather” days. I get to slow down a bit and take a break.

After I got up, fed the kids, let the dog out and made my coffee, I sat down with my laptop to enjoy a little surfing and coffee sipping. Things were great, nice and relaxing. Then I thought, "I don’t think I’ve seen my one and three year old in a bit. I better go upstairs and see what’s going on."

Before I could get upstairs my three year old was on her way down. She came to tell me that her nose was “messy.” She caught a cold last week and “messy” means her nose is running and she needs a tissue. I took Faith into the bathroom and grabbed a tissue and wiped her nose. I noticed that she had some thick snot stuck to her nose so I leaned her backward over my lap to pull it out with a tissue.

As I was cleaning her nose so that she could breath better I was startled by what I saw. I found a teal colored bead lodged up in the bridge of her nose! I said, “Faith! There’s a bead in your nose!! How am I gonna get that out!!” This thing was lodged well and would NOT move!

Bead stuck in bridge of my 3 year old's nose.
So I tried pushing on the side of her nose to force it downward. Faith told me that this action was painful so I stopped. I decided I would find some tweezers and try to pull it out. Upon further examination of the bead in comparison with the tweezers, I realized this would not work because the bead was so large compared to her nose that there was no extra space around it to pull it out.

As I sat thinking about how I was going to get this bead out, Faith turns to me and asks, “How’s Gracie’s bead in her nose??” I screamed, “WHAT!!?!?! YOU PUT A BEAD IN GRACIE’S NOSE TOO!!?!?!” So I grab Gracie, lay her on my lap and proceed to check out her nose. Phew! No bead. Thank God. I guess if she did have a bead in her nose, it either fell out or went down her throat and she swallowed it.

After calming back down, I decided I better call my husband, John, and see if he had any suggestions on how to get this bead out. I told him it was lodged and that she was probably going to have to go to urgent care so that they can get it out. John was not willing to spend the $50 at urgent care when he was sure we could get it out. So John decides he is going to run home from work and give it a try.

John calls me from his cell phone on his way home and starts asking me all kinds of questions about the bead's size, shape and location. He was using the commute time to plan how and with what he was going to remove this bead. When he got home he scanned his workbench in the garage and pulled out these tools to aid him in the bead removal.


At first John tried using the large tweezers with the smaller tips. These would have worked but he could not get a hold of the bead because Faith was scared out of her mind would not hold still. John decided he would use the clay tool and insert the tip into the hole in the bead (we were lucky enough that the bead's hole was accessible). That actually dislodged the bead from the bridge but it did not pull it forward much.

By now, Faith is crying because pulling that bead from where it was lodged in the bridge really hurt. She is so scared that she does not want to let her father come anywhere near her! I sit her up and tell her in a gentle voice, “Faith, the bead has to come out. I know it hurts. I need you to try blowing really hard to get it out.”

We had actually tried blowing it out before we started amature surgery, but it didn’t work because it was lodged. I held the other nostril closed and said, “Blow! Hard!” Faith blew and blew and blew. Finally the bead appeared right at the opening of the nostril. I then realized that the bead was bigger than her nostril opening so I squeezed behind the bead and popped it out. The look of excitement and relief of her face was priceless.

I can not believe how big this thing was compared to her nose. Here is a picture of it compared with a dime.

The bead that was lodged in my 3 year old's nose. That is a dime next to it.

I asked Faith if she was going to do this again and she has promised me she will not. Only time will tell.

What has your child put up their nose and what did you have to do to get it out? Leave your link or a comment and let us know!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Chaos defines chaos as a state of utter confusion or disorder; a total lack of organization or order. defines chaos as Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome. Both of these definitions completely describe my home and my life as a stay at home mother to five children and it’s starting to take it’s toll on me and in turn on my girls and my husband.

Just this morning (and it seems as though it’s happening more and more) I was screaming and yelling at the kids as we were headed out the door for school. I was yelling because I was tripping over coats, shoes, toys, trash, food…you name it, I was falling over it. I was saying, in a loud accusatory voice to my girls, how fed up I was because our house is always in a constant state of CHAOS! I pray everyday that no one stops by my house for a visit. I wouldn’t dare let them in!

My mother has been telling me for five years, when my first started school, not to send my kids off in a bad mood. It sets the tone for the rest of their day and they do poorly in school. I try very hard to follow that PSA that was popular when I was a kid, you know, the one with the song that goes, “Did you hug your kid today? Did you send him on his way…with love, love, love, love, love?” Sometimes, I let me grumpier half get the better of me and then I feel VERY guilty when I see the girls walk into school with their heads hung low.

Sometimes I wish God had given me the gift of organization and motivation to clean. My mother in law has this gift. She always keeps things in order and clean and was able to do so when her three boys were young. Her sons now kid her that she had them out on the street, sweeping it up. I, on the other hand, was not given this gift and therefore find it very hard to keep up with my kids. They can mess up a house faster than I can clean it and the bad part is that I have no motivation to clean up after them.

I’ve tried Flylady several times. It works at first because I start with a few things at a time. But when you get further into it and have to start adding a lot more to your daily routines, that’s when I fall off the wagon. I am easily overwhelmed with the amount of house work having so many kids brings. I have yet to find something that can motivate me to keep up after the kids. Actually that’s not true. The only thing that motivates me is getting that, “I’m gonna stop by there in a few minutes” call. Then I do the mad dash cleaning technique. It might be a little tough to find someone to come to my house everyday just to force me to clean.

On several occasions I’ve considered hiring a cleaning service to get some help. It’s a challenge for me to just keep up the dishes, laundry, trash, sweeping and toys everyday. I don’t have much time for vacuuming, moping, scrubbing and the like. But just when I get to the point of making the phone call to the local maid service, I realize that I’m going to have to clean up before they can clean up! I doubt I can find someone willing to pick up the toys or do the dishes before they start cleaning and even if I did, I probably couldn’t afford it.

I can hear some of you saying, “Why aren’t the kids helping?” They do, sometimes. I don’t have any set chores for them. We’ve tried that. Giving them rewards for set chores. It works great at first but then it loses it novelty and they quite working and I quite rewarding and then we are back to square one.

The only thing that we do consistently is a pick up every day at 6:00 pm. But that’s not really the problem. My problem is that the kids don’t pick up after themselves such as putting their shoes up when they take them off and putting toys away when they are done and throwing trash away instead of leaving it laying around. I have to constantly remind them to do these things.

While I continue to search for some motivation and a perfect cleaning and organization routine that works for me, enjoy some actual photos of messes around my house.

Powder room
This is our powder room on the main floor of our house. Notice how the kids can seem to find the trash can.
Pantry floor
This is our pantry floor. When I tell the kids to pick up their things, they throw a lot of it on the pantry floor. I have to constantly clean this tiny room up.
More 3 yo art work in dining rm
My three year old took a permanent marker and drew all over a lot of our chair rails in our dining room.
Under the breakfast table
This is what it looked like under our breakfast table this morning. Food, toys and shoes everywhere.
3 yo art woek in brand new house
This is more of my three year old's art work. Very upsetting when your house was built just over a year ago.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Rollin’, Rollin’, Rollin’

Today was a pretty normal day. I dropped the girls off at school, happy that they are all well enough to go. My six and eight year olds were really sick last week. My eight year old is much, much better. My six year old is still not 100% though. She has been very tired and therefore cranky.

After dropping off the girls I made my way to Target. Our little Buddy (our dog for those of you that do not know) is out of dog food. I can’t figure out how he is out of dog food, he seems to live off my kids crumbs and he never seems to eat his own food. There was so much more I wanted to buy at Target, besides the dog food, but I left my coupons in the car. I just could not bring myself to spend more than I had too. Oh well, maybe next time.

I decided that while I was at the mall (Target is attached to our local mall) that I would get some exercise and do some mall walking. I’m not aware if “mall walking” is widely known so here’s the jest of it. As a form of exercise you walk inside the mall. Everyone in our mall goes in a clockwise motion, following all the wings. Mostly I’ve seen older, retired couples and stay home mommies. I wondered today, as I walked behind an older couple, if I could convince John to mall walk with me when we get older. Probably not.

After mall waking I took my one and three year old girls home. They were getting tired and cranky and crying loud enough to make heads turn, a good sign that it’s time to go. I was dripping with sweat, I walked faster today than I normally do. Mommies of little ones don’t get to enjoy shower like they used to so I took the opportunity while my one year old napped and my three year old watched Dora.

After my shower I feed my kiddos some lunch. We watched a little more TV and then I decided it was time for my one year old to go upstairs to get ready for a nap. She wasn’t extremely tired since she napped for a bit after we got home so I decided to do a load of laundry to kill a little time. When I got done with the laundry, Gracie was rubbing her eyes so I started our nap time routine.

I laid Gracie down on my bed to change her diaper before putting her down. I unfastened the tabs on her diapers and pulled the diaper out from underneath her. I unknowingly sent little doo-doo balls rolling all over the bed. Ugh! I had no idea she was poopy. I quickly ran to the bedside table and grabbed a tub of wipes. Fortunately, the poop was firm and easy to pick up with a wipe.

I got Gracie cleaned up and her little bum covered with a fresh diaper. Right before I put her into her bed, I heard my three year old come up the stairs and into my bedroom, where Gracie’s crib is. I laid Gracie down into her bed and heard Faith behind me say, “Mommy, what’s this?” I turn around to find one of Gracie’s doo-doo balls in her hand! I guess it fell off the bed! I immediately grabbed another wipe and took it from her and led her to the bathroom to wash her hands.

Motherhood, it’s a dirty job, but someone has to do it…

Friday, October 23, 2009

Oh What A Night

I envision those words being said on the silver screen by a giddy girl just waking up in the morning after spending the night of her life with a very dreamy, handsome young man. I also hear that song by The Four Seasons. Unfortunately, I did not spend last night painting the town and having the time of my life, quite opposite actually. I have two kids home sick with the flu and we had one heck of a night!

9:45 pm. My six year old, Avery, has been sick since Wednesday with classic flu like symptoms. She got it from her eight year old sister who has been sick for seven days with this nasty flu. After being asleep for an hour, Aver wakes up hysterically crying. I rush down the hallway to find her stand at the end of it. I ask her what is wrong and she says she is scared. I ask her of what but she tells me she doesn’t know. I figure it’s just a bad dream. I take her to my room, calm her down and then take her back to bed.

1:00am. After being asleep for about two and half hours I feel a tap on my arm and keep hearing the word, “mom…mom…mom…” I fully wake up and realize I’m not dreaming, there is a child in my room. It’s Avery again. She is carrying a blue plastic bucket we have dubbed the puke bucket. She tells me, “Mom, I thought I was gonna throw up, I think I’m gonna throw up now, nope I’m not, can I sleep with you.”

So I selfishly say, “There’s no room.” I know, I know, heartless, but I NEED my sleep and every time there’s a kid in the bed I don’t sleep well. Just then, by what seems like an act of God, my husband rolls over. I say to Avery, “I guess there’s room now, come on.” Yeah, I felt bad for telling her no in the beginning. Avery climbs in and I try to go back to sleep but I can’t. I’m one of those people that take forever to back to sleep.

1:40 am. My one year old, Gracie, starts screaming like something is wrong. I get up and make my way to her crib which is in our room. When you have five kids and only four bedrooms you have to start putting them in your room, plus she wakes up at night all the time and I don’t want her to wake up others by sharing a room. But I am looking forward to when she does sleep all night consistently and I can get my room back.

I look into the crib and she stands up. I’m thinking she had a bad dream. Seems to be going around. I give her a hug to assure that everything is fine. I then proceed to lay her down and cover her with her blanket. I opt out of looking for her pacifier because I figure that she is still sleepy enough to just go back to sleep. WRONG.

As soon as I get back to my bed she cries. I get back up, turn on the bathroom light, find her pacifier, give it to her, lay her back down, turn out the light, and go back to bed. Gracie never really goes back to sleep, just stays quiet, thank God. I hope she will soon fall asleep so it’s one less child to have to handle in the middle of the night.

I lay in bed wishing I could just go back to sleep. My husbands snoring and when Avery inhales you can hear all this snot in her chest and when she exhales she makes a whining noise. I realize I’m probably not going to be falling asleep any time soon and I start thinking about grabbing my pillow and a blanket and moving to the couch. I NEED SOME SLEEP!

2:40 Gracie is awake again or never went to sleep, I’m not sure, either way she is making it know that she is awake and wants someone to entertain her. That will not be me. I do not get her out of her crib because I do not want to start a habit. So I lay in bed until my three year old, Faith, comes into my room and wakes me up…here we go again, and she’s not even one of the sick ones!

So Faith comes into my bedroom and hands me a cup of milk that she says Gracie left in her room. I’m thinking to myself, “doesn’t this kid know it’s the middle of the night and she should be in bed sleeping??” I take the cup of milk from her, thank her for bringing it to me and then place it on my dresser. I then tell Faith it is still night time and she needs to go back to bed. I take her to her room, put her in bed and turn out the light.

I decide that since I’m already up and moving around the house that I should take this opportunity to change some sleeping arrangements. I wake up Avery and tell her that she has to go back to her bed. I hated being mean to her, with her being sick, but I could not sleep with her snoring and it wouldn’t stop! So I walk Avery back to her bed, tuck her in and head back to my own bed.

Gracie on the other hand is having a great time in her crib, laughing, babbling, screaming. Every once in a while, when she gets too loud, I say, “shhhh” and she quiets down for a bit. I think well maybe if I tell her to lie down she’ll do that too. Nope. Eventually she does lay back down and falls asleep and I finally fall asleep too.

3:45 am. I wake to the sounds of Avery screaming at her eight year old sister, Kaelyn. I think, “What in the WORLD is going on NOW??” My next thought is that I better get down there and quiet Avery down before she wakes the whole house back up, especially Gracie! I can hear Avery telling Kaelyn to stop and I wonder what on earth they would have to fight about at this time of the night.

I get into the girls bedroom and Avery is sitting up in her bed hysterically crying. I say, “shhhh, shhhh” to try and get her to quiet down and calm down so that I can figure out what is wrong. After she settles I ask her what she is crying about and she says that there are people running all over her room and she is scared. I think the fever is getting to her.

I tell her there are no people running around in her room. She yells at me, “Yes there is, I saw them with my own eyes!” I tell her that she is having a bad dream and that the fever is making her see things that are not there. I tell her to lie back down and get some sleep. I never did figure out why she was yelling at her sister, maybe she woke Kaelyn up with her crying and Kaelyn told her to shut up, who knows.

Thankfully this is the last time the kids wake me up. I get to sleep for three more hours before I have to get up and get my ten year old off to school. I am hoping I might sneak a nap in today to make up for the lost sleep in the middle of the night. By the way, my husband has figured out how to sleep through nights like this, or he fakes it well. Motherhood…

This t-shirt is over at (no affliation)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Potty Training Yucky-ness

My fourth child will be turning four in February. I’ve been trying to get her to potty train since she turned three. I have learned over the past ten years that my children potty train between ages three to three in a half. I personally think this is a proper potty training age, they are able to better understand what is going on. I know there is those exceptional children that train at eighteen months or age two, and I can only wish my kids would have, but alas they do not.

My fourth child has been the hardest to train thus far. She has not mastered peeing in the toilet yet. Some days she will poop in the toilet, some days she will not. I’ve tried pull ups but I think those things are worthless, they absorb like diapers and she doesn’t feel wet, which I think is an important part of the potty training process.

I’ve tried using those Gerber training pants. Those worked really well with my other children. If they peed in them they felt wet and they knew that they did not like feeling wet. It would only take a matter of days before the figured out that they would rather use the toilet than pee in those training pants. Faith is different. I am starting to think she doesn’t care if she is wet. She will pee in them and then not say anything.

I ask her all the time if she wants to use the potty and she says no most of the time. When she poops in a diaper she fusses when I change it. I’ve tried the “if you don’t like having your diaper changed then why don’t you use the potty?” She informs me that, “I don’t want to use the potty.” I usually then ask her, “why don’t you want to use the potty?” and she usually says, “I just don’t want to.”

Faith has expressed interest in going to school. She has asked me over and over when she can go. I had actually hoped that when she turned four that she would be able to attend preschool and who knows, maybe she will get it figured out by then. I’ve tried to use the idea of going to school to help the potty training process move along but it hasn’t done any good either. I’ve told her that they don’t change diapers at school, she would have to wear undies. This has not encouraged her to use the potty either.

I wouldn’t say potty training has been a complete failure. Like I mentioned above she does poop in the potty sometimes. She has even graduated from pooping in a potty chair to using the toilet, sort of, she puts the seat from the chair onto the toilet, she is still scared that she may fall in. I’m fine with this though, any progress is good and not having to clean out the potty chair is a bonus for me.

Today I told Faith right before her rest time that I needed to change her diaper. I asked her to take off her pants. I have been thinking that maybe if I make this wearing and changing diaper thing a bit more work for her maybe she will want to just go ahead and wear undies and use the potty instead. So Faith took off her pants and (without me asking) she took off her diaper, threw it away and then told me she needed to go potty. Thank God, I’m always encouraged when she goes to the potty without being ask!

After Faith spends some time in the bathroom, my eight year old daughter, who is home sick today, decided she needed to use the bathroom and walked in on Faith. The next thing I know there is a big commotion in the bathroom. I hear the door opening and closing, Faith laughing and Kaelyn yelling at Faith to “put it in the toilet!” By this point I just knew something gross was going on.

I get up to go see what is going on and find Faith with a wad of poopy toilet paper in her hand and she is threatening to put it onto Kaelyn. Of course it didn’t help that Kaelyn was making a game out of it by returning to the bathroom after running away. This only encouraged Faith to do it more. I tell Faith to put the toilet paper into the toilet and I pray that this wad of paper hasn‘t actually made contact with anything or anyone.

I wish this was the end of my story but after dropping the toilet paper into the toilet Faith proceeds to put the same hand that was holding the paper into her mouth. I screamed, “get your hand out of your mouth! It has poopy on it!” While I didn’t know if it actually had poopy on her hand or not, just the idea that it was possible to have poop on it freaked me out when I saw her hand head towards her mouth. I didn’t mean to scare her by screaming but I was glad it made her promptly remove her hand. We immediately washed both of our hands!

Do you have any good potty training hints that have worked for you? Leave a comment and let us know!

A Calming Effect

Believe it or not, on some days I can actually make it through without anything gross happening! I thought those would be good days to post on other children rearing topics. I know…I know…it’s much more fun to be grossed out so I hope you can bare with me. I think today’s topic can help out some other mommies so I thought it was worth posting.

For those of you that don’t know, I am a mother of five children. All girls ages 10, 8, 6, 3 and 1. While I would not have it any other way, having a larger than average family can be challenging, especially at dinner time. While the noise level is generally high most of the time it is more concentrated when we are all together in the dinning room for dinner. This can make for a very stressful dinner for my husband and I. It can be hard to enjoy your dinner and a nice conversation with the loud chatter in the background.

Ten years ago, while I was pregnant with my first child, a friend of my family passed away. I was given all her china. I thought it was too beautiful to use and until a few years ago it stayed stored in the boxes I brought it home in. I don’t host dinner parties so I thought, “why not use these beautiful plates for our dinners?” So that is what I started doing. When my husband can actually be home for dinner, we all get together and set the table with the beautiful plates. The kids love it and think it is so much fun.

So a couple of weeks ago I got this hair-brain idea that not only would I set the table with the beautiful plates and place mats and cloth napkins but that we would also eat by candlelight. My husband thought I was joking and the idea made him laugh. But I said, “why not, it will be fun.” So I light a candle, set it in the middle of the table and turned out the dining room light.

My girls thought it was just the coolest thing ever. To my surprise, the darkened room actually reduced the noise level that we normally experience at dinner time. I know some of you are thinking, “well duh!” and I agree with you. I was kicking myself and thinking “WHY have I not thought of this before!” It didn’t cut the noise out completely but it did lower the girls voices to a soft talking versus the loud talking voices that I imagine all kids use.

Tuesdays is my husband’s day off from work because he works on Saturdays. Usually he goes into work in the morning but comes home early. So we were able to have dinner together last night. The girls we are bit high strung after school and it continued until dinner time. They were very loud at the table and John was having a hard time dealing with the noise. All of a sudden he says to me, “do we have a candle?? I don’t think I’m in the mood to deal with the noise.” That’s the same person that thought I was crazy for introducing the candle at our last sit down!

I am thinking the candle will be best for those days when the kids just can not settle down on their own. Otherwise I think if I use the candle all the time they will become used to it and it will not have the same calming effect on them than if we just use it occasionally. The next time your kids are out of control at the dinner table, try a candlelight dinner, the effects may just surprise you.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A New Level of Gross

Last month my friend’s cousin saw a dog being abandoned out of a vehicle. Another friend of mine then posted his picture on Facebook stating that he needed a home. My first thought was, “NO WAY!” I’ve been down this road before. Six years ago we got a black lab puppy. It was not the right dog or time for us. She was big, hyper and with three small children I could not keep up with her need for exercise (we did not have a fenced in yard). With a sad heart, we gave Emma to another family. We still miss her to this day.

The more and more I saw this little dog’s face on Facebook and the more and more I heard his sad little story, the more and more I started falling in love with him. I eventually decided that I wanted to bring him home but I had one obstacle, my husband. He did NOT want another dog, AT ALL! I understood totally, he too was reminded of our last experience with a dog.

The more I tried to convenience my husband to give dog owning another try, the more he denied my request. I was starting to get desperate because the woman housing the dog was not able to keep him and in two days time he was going to be given to the humane society. I couldn’t bear the thought of him ending up in the pound after all he’d been through. So, I turned to my aunt.

My aunt loves animals. She always takes in strays and has a knack for finding homes for them. She believes she was put on this earth to help animals. I think she just may be right. My aunt told me to pick up the dog and bring him to her and she would find him a home. The only thing I had to do was keep him for one night until she could pick him up the next day.

I asked my husband if he was okay with the dog staying with us for one night. He informed me that he was onto my scheme and knew that I was just trying to get him to see the dog and fall in love with him. I actually had not planned for that to happen, I just wanted the dog to have a home. My husband then said to me, “just bring him home, we are going to end up with him anyway.” He was referring to the fact that my aunt was going to have him and that’s how we would end up with him.

Buddy is now a new member of our family. He is only a year old and my five girls are in love with him. I am too. I’ve even seen my husband letting Buddy into his lap for a little snooze. Unfortunately for me, my husband has informed me that since I brought the dog into our home, he is now my responsibility and mine alone. This means my husband will not care for the dog, like feeding and letting him outside. Which brings me to my new level of gross.

I have learned that Buddy enjoys some very nasty “treats.” He likes to chew up my older children’s night time pull ups. He scatters the absorbing pulp all over the place if my kids do not remember to throw them in the trash in the morning. I am praying for the day when those two kids are able to stay dry at night!

Buddy also likes poopy diapers. When I get my youngest two children ready for bed I change their diapers in my bedroom. I use my bathroom trash can for their diapers. Buddy likes to go into that trash can, tear open the poopy diapers and actually eat the poop from them. It’s no fun to clean up that mess! I have also caught him licking poop directly from one of my kid’s behinds when changing her on the floor!

The other “treat” Buddy likes is used feminine products. Lucky for me I am a tampon user, so there is not a lot menstrual trash except for back up pantiliners that have overflow blood from a full tampon. He tears those into tiny little pieces that I have to pick up and return to the trash can.

Because of this new added level of grossness, Buddy will now be a part of my gross out posts since he has basically become my sixth child.