Wednesday, June 27, 2007
In the past three days I have painted a room, hung pictures, dug a garden, and fixed a dishwasher (sortof).
I have needed to use a hammer, a Phillips head screw driver, a flat head screwdriver, pliers, needle nose pliers, a shovel, numerous nails, a scraper, and a ladder.
And all of these things I have done without the hands on help of my husband or his toolbox.
Because I have my own and I know how to use them, that's why.
What works for me this Wednesday is having my very own toolkit and having a basic knowledge of how things work. No woman should be without her own set of tools, completely separate from her husbands. I'm so adamant about this because there is nothing more frustrating than wanting to do something and having to wait until your husband gets home because you can't find the screwdriver and even if you could you aren't really sure how to use it (Is it "righty tighty, lefty loosey"? Or "lefty tighty, righty loosey?"). Even worse is needing to do something and not knowing where the tools are and not knowing what to do with them when you find them.
One of the downsides to being at home, is that when things break, you are usually the only grown up around. For example, this morning I turned on the dishwasher and all of a sudden water started to POUR out from under the kitchen sink. As it turns out, when Dave had fixed the garbage disposal the other day, there was a tube that didn't get reconnected. Unfortunately, that was the tube that water comes out of.
I turned off the dishwasher to stop the water, cleaned up the mess, and called Dave. He quickly walked me through how to reconnect it (not very hard), and I was finished. Crisis averted, and the dishwasher is now running smoothly.
Had I not been able to quickly locate my pliers, and have a basic understanding of how the parts worked (and I'm talking very basic here), I would have had to wait until Dave got home for him to do this tiny little thing, and I would have felt like a moron.
That, girls, is why you need your own tools.
Go to Home Depot. Go to their tool section and pick out a tool kit. If you need help, ask some one for a basic tool kit that has most things needed for easy home repairs, not a lot of specialty tools.
Once you have your tools, label them "MY TOOLS" and let the household know that they are not for general use, they are YOUR tools. Keep them in an easy to get to place. I keep mine in my hall closet, along with a small tackle box that contains a variety of nails, screws and other hooks.
Next (and this one is the biggie), when your husband (or whoever) does repairs, WATCH HIM. Ask him to walk you through some of the basic steps, and ask if you can help him. You will learn a ton just by watching. Make a point to learn how to do things like:
Turn off water sources.
Flip circuit breakers (and knowing when to do it, and what each switch is for).
Troubleshooting A/C problems, heating problems, and other major appliance problems (so you know when to call a professional, and when the problem is minor).
Fix a leaky faucet.
Nothing here is very hard, and all of it you can learn to do with very minimal fuss. It will make you feel proud of yourself, and independent because you didn't rely on someone else to do something that you were perfectly capable of doing. You're a smart kid!
Anyways, that's what works for me this Wednesday, my very own tool kit.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
1. I ate a Dove bar for breakfast today and a brownie for lunch. It's been a good day.
2. I am a Gap junkie. When I am not 25 pounds overweight (like I was for a good 2 years), I wear their clothes almost exclusively. They have the greatest jeans ever and I love their plain tshirts. In fact, that is what I'm wearing today. Over Cincos, Baby! Dave and I came across a truly great Gap outlet where I found 5 shirts for under $4 each. Strong.
3. I also love myself a bargain. I don't go too crazy about them, but nothing feels better than being able to say that you saved $25 on groceries this week by usuing coupons.
4. I've read 6 books in the last three days. Yes, that is two books a day. Now, I had read them all before so that made it a little faster, but MAN did I have a good time. The kids have been napping great and sleeping great, so I've had some time on my hands.
5. I love to plan home projects but rarely start them. I've been wanting to redecorate our bedroom for about two years now and I just can't settle on anything. I'm trying to buck this trend by starting two random projects at the same time. I'm right in the middle of one (pictures will follow its completion) and I just started another (same deal). I'll let you know how they end up in about a week or two.
6. I often use seldom used words and phrases. Dave constantly teases me about this because he says I'm the only one he knows who uses the word "ilk" regularly and assumes everyone else does, too. I never noticed it until Dave and my Mom started pointing it out.
Okay, the last one. Do you even know how hard it was coming up with the first six? We're going way back for this one because I'm pretty sure you guys know just about everything about me (It's not like I hold back or anything), and I'm just going to toss some facts at you.
7. I took three languages in school and can now speak none (French, German & Spanish), I started college at 16, I majored in History and minored in Political Science.
There you go, now, don't you feel we're closer having gone through this?
The rules are:
1. Name and link to the person who tagged you.
2. Name the state and country where you reside.
3. Name your five favorite local restaurants.
4. Tag others.
Here are my top pics for my area, which I will claim as Fort Worth, Texas since my tiny little town doesn't really have much in the way of local favorites.
1. Joe T Garcias. A mexican place that only serves two dishes: Beef Fajitas and Chicken Fajitas. They are located in downtown Fort Worth, and they started as a Mom & Pop type place with seating for only 16 back in 1935. Today they have seating for over 1000 all in one place. There is a huge indoor area, but the place to be is outside in their incredible huge outdoor eating area. Their are gardens, foutains, pools, and flowers galore. On nice weekend (and weekday) nights, the place is jam packed and the line is probably 50 people long. It's a perfect place to go when you just want to sit back for a leisurely meal with friends that will last hours and many margaritas.
2. Railhead. Suprise, a BBQ place. They have the best chopped beef sandwiches and their fries are some of the best I've ever had. A very laid back place, it always reminds me of when Tot was tiny and she and I would go meet Dave for lunch. We went every Friday for about a year, until we moved across town.
3. Jade Garden. A Chinese place, just one of those random ones, but they make incredible Chicken Fried Rice and Chicken Chow Mein and Chicken Lo Mein. Oh, and Crab Rangoon. Yummmmm.
4. Espinoza's. Just a hole in the wall Mexican place, they have insanely good Tostados, the only place in the world that makes them exactly the way that I like. Their fajitas are also tasty and they have the best chips ever.
5. Salt Lick - Austin, TX. Okay, I know this is really stretching it as far as local goes since this place is about 4 hours away, but SERIOUSLY. This is the best BBQ I have ever had in my life and I eat quite a bit of BBQ. Their pork ribs are to die for, and you get quite a bit of food for your money. It's totally worth the drive and I think this may be my favorite place to eat of all time.
And there you go.
I'm going to tag:
Monday, June 25, 2007
If you aren't going to your public library and actively using all they have to offer, well, I am just ashamed. Sure and I can't believe that anyone so smart and so suave enough to read this very blog doesn't have a library card! Do you know what you are missing?? Surely you don't, because if you did you would look up your local branch right this second (well, after you finished this post) and scurry on over there after work, or right away with your kids in tow.
The library has come a long way since the book mobile, friends. Today, your local library holds far too many treasures to ignore. They have books, sure, but they also have CD's, VHS, DVD's, internet, book clubs, tutoring for school kids, adult literacy programs, storytime for kids, guestspeakers, summer reading contests, and so much more. Basically, they are made of awesomeness and I seriously can't believe you aren't going!!
For instance, just this week I made a trip to our library with the kids. Since we live less than a mile away, I load up the kiddos in the double stroller and we walk there. Once there, I let Tot pick out a couple of books for herself and then while she is looking at them, I pick out a kids CD to listen to while we do our errands this week. I picked Sweet Honey on the Rock, an African group that sings songs that feature counting in different languages and some Rock Star Awesome songs in tribal languages. Then I move over to the DVD section and get a Sesame Street DVD for the Tot, you know, to shake things up a little. Next, I stop on over to the adult section and pick out the first few books in Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series. She's got a new one out, and I've already got it reserved here at my library so I don't have to pay $20.00 for a hardcover book I'll only read a few times. After this, we check out, where I pick up some books that I had on hold, and walk back home. Later, I hop online and look at the movies that they have. I reserve some TV series that I want to catch up on and also the movie Jewel of the Nile, because I've been in an 80's mood.
I get to read the newest books, see movies that I want to watch but don't necessarily want to buy, and get Tot an ever revolving selection of music, movies and stories and I don't make myself bankrupt in the process. This isn't even mentioning the Summer Reading contest that I entered both of the kids in (we get prizes for every 5 hours I read to them), or the storytime each week where they get to make crafts and play with musical instruments as well as hear a story.
The best part of this? Every single thing is FREE. Yes, that's right. The sum total of all this entertainment is $0. Why pay however much a month for Netflicks when I can just hop online and reserve the movies at the library for FREE and keep them for a week? Why buy my kids $10 books at the bookstore (only to be torn, colored on and eventually rendered useless) when I can check out a massive amount of books (seriously, something like 30 books at a time) for FREE? Why spend $13 on a CD that I'm not sure the kids will like or I will tolerate? There is just no reason.
So friends, in summation. If you are not using your local library, it is basically a crime against humanity and The Unsinkable. For the love of Pete, go get a library card. You mom will love you more, and you will be esteemed by all men for your prudent judgement.
Saturday, June 23, 2007
Friday, June 22, 2007
I have snack time. (By the way, I just noticed that if you are typing in HTML mode and you hit the "Bold" button, the code for it is the word "Strong" in brackets. No lie, that is the coolest thing ever.)
But seriously, at 10am and 3pm the kids and I have snacks. The alarm on my phone is set so we never miss it, and thus blood sugar crashes are rare. We get to have our pick from fruit, pretzels, crackers, sometimes cookies, cheese, peanut butter and apples, and sometimes breakfast cereal if Momma is in a pinch. Then we sit at the table and chit chat, or we sit on the couch and watch a cartoon. Now tell me, how many of you that work get to stop whatever you are doing, prop up your feet, and kick back with some string cheese and milk and take a breather twice a day? That's right, this job rules.
I get to watch cartoons all the time. Now, frankly this is both good and bad, but mostly it's pretty good. They have this cartoon called The Backyardigans, and honestly it is the reason we got cable. I was at our neighbors house one day while I was pregnant with Little David and our kids were watching this show and I immediately went home and told David we were getting cable (He had always wanted it, I was the holdout). Not only were the characters funny, polite (a rarity) and creative, the songs were ridiculously infectious. Take today for instance. Today The Backyardigans were pretending to be Secret Agents. They are singing while they try to replace a mission dinosaur toe and tiptoing, and smoothly sliding all over the museum with their mad Secret Agent skills. Consequently I have been singing the song all day "I'm a Secret Agent with a secret miiiiiissssiooooon, Sneaking and Hiding and Creeping Around" while tiptoing around my living room and sliding my feet on the tile of my kitchen, unconsciously mimicking their every move. Embarrassing should anyone just hop in unexpectedly, but hilarious fun when it's just me and the kids.
I get Nap Time. Word. I know that this is supposed to be the trump card because sleep is such a commodity for most people, but I'm putting it here in the middle because I don't always take advantage of it. I'm blessed at this stage in Mommyhood because the Tot and Little David are usually napping at the same time. The system isn't always perfect because, well, we are dealing with toddlers, but for the most part at 1pm, 2pm at the latest, both kids are nodding away in their beds and I have a good hour or two to myself. Sometimes I toss the cleaning into the wind and I lay down on the couch and nap myself. For some reason, the couch is infinitely more comfy at naptime. Other times, like today, I pop on the internet and blog, or read blogs, or just waste obscene amounts of time looking at whatever interests me that day (paint colors, toddler bedding, new books, jogging strollers, coach purses, etc). The time alone is cherished each day and leaves me feeling like I can totally deal with the rest of the day. I swear that if more workplaces gave breaks like naptime our job productivity would sky rocket.
I go to McDonalds guilt free. Say what you will, Nazi Moms of Healthful Habits, I heart McDonalds. I adore the Chicken Nuggets all but dripping in sweet and sour sauce with a great big huge side of greasy, salty fries. Top it all off with a Dr. Pepper and I am in Hog Heaven. I probably couldn't get away with eating all that junk but I'm telling you, the job makes it possible, even sweet. You see, each Friday I take the kids to McDonalds for their special lunch. We all get nuggets and fries and we take them home to eat. There we spend almost an hour eating and playing with the Happy Meal toys du jour. And please, don't knock the Happy Meal toys. Tot got a Shrek figurine that talks about a month ago, and to this day she still sleeps with it every night and we have to pray for him at every prayer. So what would be a poor health choice for me if I was just going alone, becomes a sweet memory that my kids will have of us throwing off the chains of routine once a week and jaunting off to get Nuggets and Toys and playing until naptime. Mwah Ha Ha.
I maybe own one dress. Perhaps the most coveted part of being a Stay At Home Mom is the wardrobe. And by wardrobe I mean Jeans and a T Shirt in the winter and Jeans and a T Shirt in the summer. I don't think anyone would call me fashion forward, regardless of the times I kick my game up when going out with adults. I am always most comfortable in a ponytail (when my hair is long) and jeans and a tshirt. Anyways, I say this is because no matter what I am doing any given day, odds are that if I have showered and put on lip gloss I'm looking dressed up. Moms really have the corner on this market because what we wear has to be comfortable. It's the utmost of impracticality to wear anything that doesn't lend itself to being snotted on, grass stained, cried on, snuggled on, pulled on, tugged on, and slept in. Thus the jeans and tshirts. See why I love this job? I've gotten so spoiled that I don't think I could work anywhere that required me to dress even business casual. Dude, my business casual is my pj's.
I can be crazy spontaneous. Honestly, this is the best part of being a Stay At Home Mom. The freedom. I want Starbucks? Friends, I load up the kids and get me some Starbucks. I need to get out of the house a bit? I load the kids up and we walk to the park. Tot wants to see some animals? We go to the zoo. I'm not feeling so good? I stay in my PJ's and call it a pj day where we watch tons of movies and eat easy stuff. Most things can be done without too much planning, because my entire job is to be with the kids, teaching them to do all the things they'll ever need to do, and I can do that anywhere! We can learn colors on a walk, we can learn numbers at the zoo (Quick Tot! How many monkeys have a red behind?), and we can learn manners anywhere. What other job could I get where I can get up one morning and think "You know, scrap the jobs I was supposed to do today, like laundry and dishes. Today we are going to the park and swing until we can't swing no mo'." That is awesome.
So you see dear Readers, I adore my job. There are so many more reasons to love this job that I didn't list because, frankly, I want you all to still be able to love me and any more of my gloating would send you into a jealous rage, ended only in deleting my blog from your favorites list (I am there, right??). I give you guys so many anecdotes that paint my life as harried and stressful, and sarcasticly funny, but for the most part, it's really just nice. I am so very, very blessed to get to stay at home with the kids and I am so grateful. God blessed Dave with a job that provides well and an ability to succeed at it. And Dave is so very supportive and never gripes when he doesn't have clean underpants because I called an audible and went to the park.
We have our days, like any other job, but MAN, the perks totally cancel out any bad ones. Because for every day that is filled with tantrums, diaper rash, nonstop whining and no sleep, there is a day filled with trips to McDonalds, walks to the library, coloring quietly, baking cookies, swimming in the paddle pool, and snuggles before naptime, all in my most comfortable clothes.
"He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father; and I will love him and disclose Myself to them." John 14:21
Thursday, June 21, 2007
So, instead of boring you with the normal baby updates, I'll give you his newest quirks.
1. When he gets upset, he still puts his face in the carpet and cries. It's the saddest thing in the world.
2. When I am laying on the floor playing with the kids, he comes up to me and lifts my shirt and blows raspberries on my tummy and cackles like a hen. I think this is his favorite game. It's not mine, because aside from not being particularly fond of watching my stomach undulate like waves, I'm terrified he will bite me.
3. He hates too much loud noise and despises the vacuum cleaner. He just lays there with his face in the carpet, crying, until I'm finished.
4. He gives THE best hugs in the universe. He grabs your neck and tries to bury his whole body there. It's the sweetest, most wonderful feeling ever.
5. He is remarkably unselfish with his toys. Tot takes the poor kids toys all the time (especially when Mommy isn't looking) and he just calmly gets something else to play with.
6. He loves his Daddy and squeals with joy everytime Dave walks through the door, even if he was just taking out the trash. True idol worship.
7. He has insanely strong little arms. From outside of the bathtub, he can grab the faucet and almost pull his entire body into the tub. He always does this while I'm trying to use the bathroom and can't get to him quick enough. Thankfully, he hasn't succeeded in what I can only assume is his goal of diving into the bathtub for a quick wash.
8. He loves Cheetos, and I am a bad mom for giving them to him.
9. He can pack away more applesauce than I can.
10. Seriously, he is the most good natured happiest little thing ever. Tot was always happy, and still usually is, but she has always been so active. David is such an easygoing, calm child. He loves to snuggle and loves to play quietly. He isn't demanding, unless he's teething (like he is right now) and then he is a beast to behold.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Tot promptly broke hers, but I had foreseen that event and made one, too. And if I say so myself, and I certainly do, my hat is utterly charming. Perhaps I'll wear it outside while weeding (if I ever did that), or to a party. I think it would go quite well with the nose stud.
Hosted by Rocks In My Dryer
Monday, June 18, 2007
PLEASE pray for God to work a miracle in this little boy and for him to have NO leukemia. His parents have been such witnesses for the Lord and this could be an amazing opportunity for so many people to see the faithfulness of God.
As always, we are thankful no matter the outcome, because he has lived this long. But as Ethan's father, Ben, says at the end of each post: Prayer Works.
UPDATE: Hurray!!! There was 0% Leukemia!!!!! How awesome is that?! They are now on full speed ahead with a transplant. To read more about Baby Ethan, his Dad & Mom write daily updates on their website: www.ethanpowell.com Praise God for his faithfulness.
Saturday, June 16, 2007
Friday, June 15, 2007
Dave and I had a fabulous time on Cincos, Baby! I'll post a better update later, but here are the highlights:
1. Moving from a cruddy hotel to the coolest hotel ever. Ever.
2. Skipping SeaWorld and hitting the small surrounding towns instead.
3. Getting my nose pierced. No lie.
4. Eating the best BBQ I've ever had in my life.
5. Spending 8 entire days with my best friend.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007
Because, in just two short days I'll be on
Yes, that's right, the long awaited time has finally arrived and WHEW it couldn't come at a better time. Your Unsinkable is in dire need of some catch up sleep, some palling around time with her favorite friend, and some time away from her sweet babies. So, for the week that I'm away, I plan to be totally away. No email, no web, no blogs, no nothing. I'll be screening my calls, only responding if there is an emergency involving my kids or my immediate family. I won't be reading any books that tell me how to be "better", I'll do no planning, no list making, nothing. Just total and complete fun time with my pal. Could that sound any better?
So, friends, this will be my last post here until June 16th -ish. Have a wonderful week, and just so you don't cry at my absence here is a slide show of Little David's first year. It was going to be much cooler, complete with music, but I couldn't get the stupid mac to work :
Anyways, here you go - is he not the cutest thing EVER????
Oh, and if you need some reading material while I'm gone - look to the right at my BlogRoll - everyone there is SupaCool.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007
In honor of my Little David's first birthday, I think I will recount his birthday for my Unsinkable Readers. I don't think I ever told the whole story, just that it was crazy fast. So, without further ado:
The Arrival Of David Wayne Chapman, III.
As those of you who were reading my old blog at the time know, by June 3rd, I was SICK AND TIRED of being pregnant. I had already been to the hospital once for false labor and I had been through the ups and downs of thinking he was breech and that I would need a csection (something I adamently didn't want), to finding out that he had flipped and we could progress as normal. David wasn't too big, but my word was he active. I had gotten so tired of the lack of sleep, the constant battering and just the general malaise of waiting, that I decided to take matters into my own hands the day I turned 38 weeks, full term, on June 3rd.
The afternoon of June 3rd, Dave and I sent the Tot off to her grandparents for the day so that we could have one final day to ourselves before our family of three exploded to a family of four. I had already decided to do anything to get my labor started, and while Dave wanted to wait longer, he knew better than to argue with a desperate woman. So we took a two hour walk, ate some fresh pineapple, ate some spicy food and nothing. Irritated beyond belief, I asked Dave to take me to Steak N Shake, where we had a yummy meal and tried to relax. It was so nice to have that whole day with him, I just can't even begin to explain. During the meal, I begged and I pleaded for him to let me try the Castor Oil. It had worked with my mom and I just knew it would work for me. He wasn't too crazy about it, but by the end of lunch (and a few close bouts of tears), he agreed and took me to Walgreens.
We got home and at 4:44pm I took the recommended dose of Castor Oil, it wasn't too bad, it just tasted like vegetable oil. By 6pm nothing had happened and I was feeling pretty depressed, and by 7pm I was in some serious pain, but NOT from contractions. Dave just sat on the couch and laughed and laughed and "told me so". Dave's dad dropped off the Tot, and we put her straight to bed.
But, at 7:30, the contractions began. They started to come faster, and then slowed down and completely depressed me again, but by 9:45 they were about 5 minutes apart and we packed ourselves and the Tot up, and headed to the hospital.
When we got there, the contractions were 3 minutes apart, and I knew, just knew, that this was the day. I prayed and prayed over and over, as I walked the halls trying to get things moving and I felt a peace like I have never felt, just knowing that it was really and truly happening this night.
But they slowed down again, and the nurse told me it was most likely false labor. She sent us home, but not before giving me TWO Ambien (the normal dose for an adult male is one, for 8 hours of complete sleep), telling me that if I wasn't in real labor sleeping would stop the contractions and that if it was real labor, no Ambien would let me sleep.
We got home at 1am and put the Tot in bed and Dave and I crashed.
At 3:00am, I woke up on the toilet in the most searing pain I could imagine, totally groggy and thinking that I was in some crazy dream, and almost crying. Dave was talking at me telling me to hurry up that we needed to get to the hospital NOW, and to quit just sitting there.
Apparently, I had woken him up, telling him that my water broke and I couldn't move. So he carried me to the toilet and there my water actually broke, and he called the hospital and they told him to get there now. I was in active, active labor and the whole time Dave was running around trying to load up the suitcases and get the Tot in the truck, I was laboring in the bathroom, trying to make the bed and wipe the countertops off. We'll just say I was totally out of it. Ambien doesn't do you well when you try to wake up early.
Dave eventually dragged me to the truck, and then raced to the hospital running red lights and going 30 over the speed limit holding his cell phone in his hand in case he had to call 911, because let me tell you it was all I could do to hold on to that baby and not have him right there in the floorboards.
We got to the ER and the nurses took me up in the wheelchair while Dave got the Tot and the suitcases. I don't remember any of the trip up to Labor & Delivery, only that I just sat there trying not to cry because everything hurt so bad. When I got to my room, the nurses had to undress me and get me in my gown because all I could do was not have the baby right there.
They got me in the bed and checked me for dialation right as David ran into the room with a very sleepy Tot and the suitcases. He got the Tot in a chair, ran to the bed right as the nurse said "You're at an 8" and I said "I have to push right now". The nurses kept telling me no, and then I pushed really really hard and out came Little David's head. The nurses all started yelling and running towards me saying"No time! No time!! She's having him RIGHT NOW!!" and one more hard push and out came Little David, a total of 10 minutes after we arrived at the hospital.
I remember seeing him and wanting to hold him and thinking that he was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen in my life. The rest of that morning is kindof an Ambien induced haze filled with funny "Loopy Kristen" stories, including me calling a whole lot of random people at 3:30am telling them I had a baby, trying to walk to my recovery room a total of 30 minutes after I had a baby, and then doing my hair and makeup once I got to the room and demanding a "sitz bath" to a very confused nurse. Poor David had to deal with a newborn, a new mom acting like a sleepy toddler, and an actual sleepy toddler. I don't think he had two seconds to himself until we'd been home for three days.
Finally, I came out of my fog about 7am and started acting like a normal person. We spent the rest of that morning cooing over the tiniest, most adorable baby ever, changing teeny tiny diapers, showing him to family and friends, and laughing over his facial bruising that made him look like he had a mustache. He nursed like a champ, slept well, and the next day I was ready to go home with my new favorite son.
And so, our journey with Little David began.