Updates

I finally managed to put my hair fire out.  With no lasting damage. I think it looks fine.  If it doesn’t look fine, please don’t tell me, just let me wander about the earth with singed hair, for the sake of my sanity please and thank you.

A few updates from our clan:

1. Mom’s home.  

She was released on Tuesday into our loving care.  Everyone (especially Ike) is ecstatic to have her back.

2. Ivanal is now officially a “high schooler”.  

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She started 9th grade last week at a brand new school to accompany our brand new house.

I think she may have been a tad nervous, but she has since overcome it.  Her proudest achievement thus far?  Friends with upperclassmen.

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3. Ike went back to school.  

Walked into class “like a boss”; that’s words from his teacher.  He’s kind of one of the older kids in his class now.  When did that happen?

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His class notes have typically said that he enjoys helping his friends clear away their place setting at lunch and put away their toys.  This is completely not evident at home.

4. Gabby has moved into the dorms.  

A nerve-wracked weekend and a total of 5 trips to 5 different Targets and she is safely settled into her room.

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I never lived in the dorms at Auburn, but I visited a few.  Hers are much nicer than any dorm I’ve ever seen.  It’s almost nicer than the apartment I lived in my freshman year.

5. We are fixing the basement.  

We have chosen a company to solve the water intrusion issues and they have already come to install a mold mediation device to make it safe for us to hang out down there.  Ike generally hangs on the door to the basement and begs to “come” downstairs.  My dad was in town last weekend and we spend some time down there in the basement family room.  Naturally, Ike tried his best to get back upstairs the whole time.

6. We sold our house!

We now are the proud owners of only one home!  We inched dangerously close to have dual mortgages but we slipped the closing in 3 days before late fees would be assessed. The closing took an epic 3 hours and landed me in rush hour traffic but we got it done.

Broken Phones and Lost Shoes

We bought a house on Friday.  Hooray.  Well, technically, we bought a house.  We signed the papers and paid the lawyer A LOT of money and now I have a piece of paper saying that we own the house.  We do not have keys and we have not moved in because we are renting the space to the owners until next Friday…

Last week, on my way to DC for a work meeting my phone died.  It just decided that it was time, that life as an iphone was just not worth living anymore.  I was listening to music and flipping through some form of social media when it just…well it just died.  The battery was good, it showed no signs of having any trouble, I didn’t drop it or cause any other trauma, just spontaneous failure to operate.

When I finally managed to get an appointment that was at a reasonable (not working hours) time frame at the apple store, it was Saturday.  They replaced the phone because their technical “genius” response was “huh, I guess it just died”.  Thanks.

Along with my now dead phone, died three posts worth of photos.  I have more or less made peace with that, I guess, not really, but whatever.  Life is as what it is in our world of technological reliance.  Incidentally I have maniacally hit the save button on this post at least 20 times so far, because electronics man, you never know!

Also happening last week, Ike has managed to lose three shoes.  Not three pairs, three shoes.  By the way, Ike owns 4 pairs of shoes, and one pair of rain boots that are so big that they fall off when he walks.  That left one pair of lace up Adidas as safe footwear.  At Ike’s montessori school, they encourage independent care of self, which includes getting oneself undressed in the morning and removing one’s shoes.  Therefore they encourage shoes that children can remove and put on, on their own.  Translation?  Velcro not laces!

Toddler shoes do not come cheap, especially when you consider they only wear a given size for about three months.  Saturday morning I was determined to find Ike’s missing shoes.  When he wants to go outside he generally brings me one of his shoes, to get his point across, so the pairs are often separated.  I figured the others had to be around somewhere, likely under the couch with all the millions of little plastic balls.

I searched and cleaned and rearranged the furniture downstairs and upstairs in the bedrooms for about 4 hours.  I found these all of these shoes downstairs.   None of Ike’s lost shoes were anywhere to be found.

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Sunday I caught Ike putting his T-shirt into the garbage, so I have an idea of where the shoes may have ended up.

By noon Ike and I were in Target in search of some decently priced, non-lace up, extra wide (marshmellow feet), Montessori-approved shoes.

Well folks, there you have it.  500 words on missing shoes and a broken phone, that about sums up my week.

San Diego Zoo

Last weekend we took a trip to San Diego.  It was Ike’s longest planeride yet.  It went OK, as in nothing too mortifying happened, I don’t think anyone complained about us, but I am not too keen on doing it again anytime soon.  Four and half hours is a LONG time to keep him occupied in a confined space.  Food helped.

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We made it nevertheless and Ike got to hang out with his Dori and his west-coast family.

Isaac’s three cousins, two Aunts, and Uncle all live in the southern California area and were sharing a rental home in the Hillcrest neighborhood of San Diego.  They were all thrilled to hang out with Ike, he is such a little rock star.  We went to the zoo, while we were there, because it is San Diego and that is what you do there.  I am not particularly fond of the zoo, any zoo, but I have to say, if you are going to visit only one zoo, make it this one.  It was spectacular.

It was also incredibly crowded.  Ike was attached firmly to his leash when he wasn’t being carried or pushed in his stroller.  He was very thrilled about it.

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There was every kind of animal you can imagine and a few that you probably can’t.  The exhibits are layed out in a most creative fashion.  My favorite was a cheetah cub and a puppy that shared a habitat because they had become friends as babies.  How sweet is that?

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They also had Koala bears, which I challenge anyone to take more than a 2 second look at and not melt a little inside.  Bonus.  There was a baby Koala!  Perched safely inside his mother’s lap, I couldn’t even see him for a while.

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This is what Ike though of the Koalas.  Maybe the baby koala told him he was thirsty?

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Here’a all the family taking in some warthogs.  Ike had their greeting down pat and they loved it.  Sort of looks like he is trying to hop in there and join his clan.

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And Thomas? Oh he’s fine.  Really.  San Diego is a walking kind of city and a little adjustment to us city-folks.  Several people shared the use of the wheelchair throughout the day.

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Checking out the giraffes.  Ike is not interested in giraffes in California or Atlanta apparently.

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Ike waving hello to the Rhinoceros.  Well, the Rhinoceros’s butt.  Maybe he was saying Bye.  I don’t remember.

Here’s a picture of a donkey named Sophia.  Despite persistent pleas from Alencia and Karlos, she refused to turn around, thereby validating everyone’s nickname of “Ass!”.

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Again, I cannot recommend this zoo enough.  It’s a little pricey, but totally worth it.  It’s HUGE though, so spring for the rental strollers or wheelchairs if you are so inclined because there is a ton of walking.  There are also assorted food/refreshment stands to keep you strength up.  We bypassed the enormous elephant habitat to refuel at one of them.  Budget extra money for libations throughout the day, or pack your own if you’re into being thrifty and prepared (our family is not).

On the Road with Ike

How far we’ve come from the days when a 20 minute drive from our house to the doctor’s would send Ike and me both into a whirlwind of despair.  We seem to be on the go almost every weekend with extensive carseat time.

I owe most of our car-related stress relief to Raffi and other kids-centric music.  Ike’s latest craze? Old MacDonald or more affectionately known around our house…E-I-O?

We took a trip over to Birmingham this Friday to see my little cousin graduation with her Doctorate Degree in Nursing (very impressed is this lowly Bachelor’s degree holder by the way).  The trip was about 2 and half hours each way.  He slept most of the way home, but on the way there, I’m pretty sure we heard Old MacDonald at least 1,000 times.  Every time it ended we heard this from the back seat:

“Daddio?”

“Mama?”

“E-I-O?”

We played Old MacDonald from Raffi, from Dora, from Barney from EVERYONE!  Over and over and over. But I guess that’s better than hysterical screams from the backseat for two hours.

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Here is Ike and me with the beautiful smart graduate, who is also getting married this fall.  What a year right?!  We are so proud.  This is about 30 minutes before Ike had a world class melt down and I was more or less shamed out of PF Changs, but let’s remember the good times shall we?

 

Spring Bucket List

Spring is definately in the air.  So is pollen, but we can overlook that.  The weather is beautiful here in Georgia and the flowers are in full bloom.  My very outdoorsy child is in heaven.  The only time he cares to go inside is to eat, which these days is occurring more and more frequently.  Otherwise it’s outside for “wah wahs”.

Since Ike is in a pretty major exploring phase, this spring is an opportunity for us to get in some good development and fun activities before the unbearable heat of summer begins.  We need a bucket list!  A Tot-sized bucket list.

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1.  Go to the playgrounds.  Go to ALL the playgrounds.  Play on slides and hone those climbing skills!

2.  Pick some strawberries.  We heart all things berries in my house.  Strawberries are grown locally here in Georgia at a variety of farms around the metro Atlanta area.  We are planning to go to Cottle Farms just south of the city to try our hand at some picking.  I see lots of strawberry shortcake and strawberry milkshakes in our spring future!

3.  Visit the Zoo. Technically, we can check this one off, Ike and Ivanal and I hurried off to the zoo the first weekend it was sunny out and monkeyed around the bird habitat for a few hours.

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But we will keep this one the list since my mother’s annual pass is still good through the summer.

4.  Go to the Dogwood Festival. The dogwood festival is one of Atlanta’s most popular spring festivals.  I’m embarrassed to admit in my 8 years of living in this city I have yet to attend.  We have already made plans to meet up with Ike’s buddy Jacob on Sunday.

5.  Play in the rain. April showers are prevalent in the southeast.  Being a normal girly-type I am prone to sitting on the couch and watching chick-flicks during this rainy time, but my mud-loving toddler must get some good splish-splashing in.  He’s got a cool new raincoat in preparation for it.

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6.  Have a picnic. We do own a very nice, vintage picnic basket after all.  That has been used exactly once.  This will totally justify it’s retention. Plus this activity combines Ike’s two most favorite things; eating and outside.

7. Eat. Pick some flowers. The dog and Ike are pretty impressed with the wild flowers (weeds) around our house.  They are also impressed with the grass and it’s assorted flavors.  I think we’ll go and check out some real flowers though too.

8.  Get wet. Cousin Mei’s favorite park the “yellow park” also known as Old Fourth Ward Park, has a pretty cool water feature.  So does Olympic Centinneal Park.  I think these would help Ike’s new aversion to bath time.

9.  Drink some smoothies. Made with our fresh picked strawberries of course!

10.  Take lots of walks. When all else fails, or mommy just runs out of time, Ike’s always down for a stroll around the neighborhood.

More Birthdays

We went back to New Orleans a few weeks ago to celebrate Miss Savanna’s SIXTH birthday!  My oldest niece is now SIX YEARS OLD!  She’s quite a sassy young lady too!  I haven’t seen my nieces and nephews in way too long.  It was good to hang out with them.

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Baby Selena was not super happy to meet her cousin Ike.

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She wasn’t super happy to meet anyone that wasn’t her mommy or daddy though.

We left early Saturday morning.  This fly guy here…

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Is becoming a very experienced traveler.

My dad put out a huge spread for us Saturday night after the birthday party.

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My uncles and cousins came over, we opened some wine (a lot of wine) and we had a great time.

Are these not two peas in a pod?

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While we were there Ike’s god-family visited on their spring break.  I’m not sure who was happiest to see who.  All of us, to see all of us, I think.  But especially these two.

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We went to the aquarium.

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We took a ride on the St. Charles Streetcar.

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Then we walked about 12 blocks looking for change so we could ride back.

I always miss the city when we have to leave.  All the pretty colors, the homes and buildings all have such unique personalities.

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Of course we had to stop for beignets while we were there.

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Obsessed with Outside

“Wah Wah?”

“Wah wah” is Ike’s way of asking to go for a walk.  Outside.  Which is not so much a walk as it is just take him outside please, right now, thanks.  Sometimes he is happy to sit on the porch in his little blue lounge chair and feel the breeze through his bird’s nest hair.

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“Wah wah?” Is the first thing I hear when I go to Ike’s room in the morning.  Or when I walk through the door after work.   Tiny, little, bright brown eyes staring up at me from knee-hieght.

“Wah wah?”  he asks again.  If I ignore the request or tell him that I need to do something else first (like oh I don’t know go pee or something) he goes and gets a shoe.  Only one shoe, usually his, sometimes mine, or the closest one he can find.  And he asks a little louder this time “Wah wah?”

If the response is still unfavorable, or if I make an unreasonable request like “go get your other shoe”, he contorts his face into a sour expression, throws the shoe on the floor, stomps his chubby little foot and shouts “WAH WAA-AAH! MAAA!”, then grabs my hand and drags me to the nearest door.

Does this only happen to me? Is he satisfied after going outside for a walk (wah wah)?  Um no.  We go outside, we walk, we blow bubbles, we play on his Little Tykes slide.

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Eventually I coax him back inside to start dinner, and as soon as his sister walks in the door it starts all over again.

“Wah wah?”

Then his Dad gets home.  “Daddie-O! Wah wah?”

This weekend we were pretty much outside all day, both days, until dark.  When we came in for dinner what did he ask?  “Wah wah?” Of course.

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What a lovely morning.

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Think I’ll take my coffee and go for a wah wah.

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Oh, this your coffee mom-mom?

And at night, after we’ve been outside at the house, outside at the playground, and outside at the zoo, he asks once more after dinner.

Ike. “Wah wah?”
Me. “No wah wah it’s dark outside.”
Ike. Thinks for a moment.  “Bah?” Which is bottle.  Because if we aren’t walking we must be going to bed.