Friday, June 30, 2006

Chewing babies

Yesterday was a pop quiz day. Quick - how do you explain where a baby grows to a just-3-year-old? I apparently did not do a very good job. I told Roman I was calling Nicole to see if her baby was coming yet. Here is a general outline of our conversation:

"Where is the baby coming from?"
"They have to go to the hospital, honey. It's in Nicole's tummy." (danger! danger!)
"I was in your tummy?"
"No, sweetie, we went to a baby home to get you. Some people have babies from their tummy, and some people go to baby homes. We chose to get you from a baby home in Russia!"
"And then you chewed me?"
"Chew me... eat me."
"To get you into my tummy?"
"Oh, sweetie, no...."

And then I was lost. I never expected it to become a "birthmom-baby home-adoption" discussion, although I should have known better. So it's time to go through his Russia book again and have a better explanation. Luckily, Roman's attention span is short-lived so while I struggled to explain, he started talking about trains again.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Photos from South Dakota

Posted just a few pictures, but you can get the general idea from our trip. More details and links later.

Other news in brief:
Tomorrow is my first full day of summer vacation with Roman. Hope it doesn't rain. Planning a picnic at a park in Plymouth (kids' concert at noon) and swim class at 5pm.

We bought a de-humidifier for the basement today. In 3 hours it made a huge difference in the feel and smell of the place. Amazing.

Put up Roman blinds in the living room, and one in the burgundy room (ran out of hooks). Much different "feel" to the place.

Next up - moving my computer upstairs to the dining room for quicker reference to Weight Watchers stuff, recipes I have that I have never printed out, and also so I can do my fiddling around and scrapbooking in a nice place during the day (if I ever have time during the day). Perhaps Roman can play a computer game or two now from the library.

Doug starts his new job July 10.

Friend Nicole has been induced today to get Perrin out in the world, no word since 9am (when they did it). Hope all is fine.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Who says you can't find a job in Michigan?

I can finally journal about our lives for the past few weeks, as there's been a big advance toward change that I couldn't talk about. But now Doug says okay. When Lorro went under a few weeks ago Doug got to being curious - wondering where he might have gotten a new job and who would be interested in him. Combine that with a growing frustration with his present job position (and no light at the end of the unpleasant tunnel) , Doug decided to actively search for a new job.

We had always said we would have a "future talk" in December of this year. Well, this job revelation on Doug's part forced some pretty interesting conversations about where we want to end up living in the future, where we see our family growing, etc. It's no secret I want to live back on the "west side" and it's no secret Doug is slightly less enthusiastic about the idea. After having conversations in the car, during work, during potty training, and all other sorts of places, we decided on step one: Doug would apply for jobs in all areas that interest us and let God/fate decide. This included the geographic areas that are bounded by SE Michigan; also Kzoo, GR, and South Bend, Indiana.

Really long story short, Doug began to get calls within 24 hours of posting his resume. Got a couple bites from Kzoo/GR area but none that panned out. Along with interviewing with a contract/placement firm in Kzoo, two companies here in SE Michigan have interviewed him; he has a second round tomorrow with one, and he has received an offer from the other company that he plans on countering.

So there's been a lot of emotions getting... emoted around here. Realizing some long-term plans have been a benefit of this; I don't know about Doug, but I've been all over the emotional map everytime he gets a call - especially if it's from an area that I want to move to. But a move right now also scares us - no houses are selling here, and we feel that financially we can't take a break from me working right now so I'd have to scramble to find a job. But long-term, with the right offer, we think we might end up on the west side. Long term. Not this year, maybe not even next year; especially if Doug accepts a position at a company local. But... that's what's been going on.

On the plus side, summer started for me today. School's out for summer! Finally!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

voluntary potty training

Last Thursday morning Roman declared he wanted to wear underwear. This happens every few days but we usually explain him out of it - he will have to use the potty, tell people when he has to go before he goes, etc. This time Roman stuck to his guns, however. So off he went to daycare. He had two accidents so I thought when we returned home, he would be agreeable to putting pullups back on. Nope. He wanted to use the potty some more.

Friday morning we thought we'd be back to pullups. Wrong again! He not only wanted to wear underwear again, he informed Daddy that he had to use the potty, and then proceeded to use it. Standing up. Like a big boy! So off we went again in underwear and had only one accident. Friday afternoon I convinced him back into pullups (after two more accidents within the space of 15 minutes) but he still wanted to use the potty, never complaining. Always tried.

Saturday morning - he awoke at 2:30am calling for Mama. He told me he needed a new pullup and he had to go potty. We did this, and he was successful. Saturday afternoon, he used a public urinal and did a great job (which meant he had been holding it through lunchtime). Sunday morning, 4:00am - again, he awoke calling for us because he had to use the potty. Successful again!

We had really hoped to put off training for another couple weeks, after our trip to South Dakota. But apparently Roman has decided on his own he is ready to start being a big boy, whether or not we're actually ready. He's amenable to pullups because he does still "leak," but he uses the potty and often informs us that he needs to. Give it a handful of weeks and I think we may be close to trained!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

contracts & fights

An adventurous day. Amazingly enough, the contract has nothing to do with the fight. We are up for a new contract and the important things - school calendar and salary - have been agreed upon. Union meeting on Thursday which I will not be attending. All in all it looks pretty good. I'm disappointed in the school calendar as they insist upon an entire week for February break, did not lengthen our school days, and we still get out a week later than any other district around us. Frustrating.

The kids have lost their minds. There was a big deal about today being 6-6-06, which I did my best to squelch by pointing out that the calendar is a man-made invention and therefore, I didn't think supernatural evil that is loose in the world would really pay attention to that. Anyway, two boys in 8th grade decided they were going to start a food fight today. The one began by throwing - get this - an APPLE at the other kid. Knocked him in the head. Apparently this wasn't what the 2nd kid expected to happen and instead of continuing the food fight decided to just fight. Punched the first kid, where they both began to brawl in the lunchroom. It gets worse, though - our assistant principal stepped in to break it up and got punched in the face by the 2nd kid. He wears glasses, which broke and cut him on the bridge of his nose; hence he began bleeding. Here's the worst part - a large group of kids began to CHEER when our AP got hit.

Yes. Lost their minds. My 4th hour, who reported this to me (quite accurately, too - I was impressed!), was in a hushed attitude. After telling me about the fight, they appeared to be kind of in shock over our AP. And over the behavior of the kids who cheered. I don't think it sunk in what had actually happened until they were in a different location and began to process it. Our principal sent out a scathing e-bulletin (our school is so technologically cool!) to parents asking them to address this total lack of respect for authority figures. And we still have 7 school days to go....

Independent Roman

After waking at 6am but then sleeping another 1-1/2 hours in our bed, Roman was rarin' to go this morning. He wanted to watch the show "Arthur" while I took a shower. When I got out of the shower, I heard some thumping around in the kitchen. I asked Roman what he was doing. "Getting a glass!"
"What are you going to do with that glass?"
"Get water."
"Are you thirsty?"
"No, I going to paint!"

And sure enough, once I got some clothes on, I came out to the dining room to find:
Roman had dragged a chair over to the counter. Climbed onto the counter. Opened the cabinet door. Got a glass. Back onto the chair. Filled the glass with water. Got down from the chair, glass in hand, and took the glass of water to the dining room (spilled some on the floor, which he told me about immediately). Pulled out his paints and Thomas and proceeded to paint for about 10 minutes at the table. This he did entirely by himself. Doug's and my only thought on this - we should probably encourage a paper cup rather than our glasses!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Scrapbook page

Had to post this. Did it tonight in a little over an hour. Played with digital staples. How fun! I'm really pleased with this layout. I find that digital scrapbooking is great for me when I have 1, 2, or maybe 3 photos. I haven't attempted a layout with multiple pictures yet; probably because I don't enjoy measuring and spacing. All the math that would go into it!

We had a breakthrough on the food front two nights ago. I wanted something quick and easy so I made "pigs in a blanket." For me, that's wrapping a hot dog in a crescent roll, maybe with cheese & onions too. Roman was just tickled with the idea and ate a whole one! I think this is the first time he has eaten what we eat at the table. Yes, folks, we missed the boat on giving table food. We tried it again tonight - with "silly stew" (goulash). We pretended the tomatoes were ladybugs, the pasta was worms, and Roman himself claimed the ground beef was sausage. He did try 2-3 bites but then decided he didn't like it. I swear, he's a born vegetarian. He did want to eat the "sausage & ladybugs" but I don't think he likes ground beef. Doug and I discovered later that Parmesan cheese sprinkled over the top really helped. But, at least he tried it!