Wednesday, January 23, 2008

talking each other off the ledge

Our little family has been going through alot lately. The diva is having real sleep issues. Baby bear was really (and still is) a good sleeper so we're in uncharted territory. She has trouble shutting down at night so we have to stay in her room until she's totally asleep or she bolts upright, howling, ready to run out of her bed/room to find us. She's a little sick, so she's waking up pretty often throughout the night (every hour from 1am on) doing the same thing: bolting upright, howling, ready to run out of her bed/room unless we get there quickly enough. More often than not, I end up sleeping on the floor next to her from about 4:30am on when it's my night.
Then, of course, there's the kindergarten ordeal that we're in the middle of right now. Plus, with all the school tours and broken water heaters, we're barely putting in any time at work - which isn't necessarily appreciated by co-workers/managers. Stress levels are incredibly high and for some reason SM and I just HAVE to be devil's advocate to each other no matter what the topic.
Today, as we chatted on the phone reviewing our FOURTH SCHOOL TOUR!?!?!?!, he said it:
"Right now we just need to keep talking each other off the ledge."
That's what it's come to.
Not enjoying each other's company, discussing politics (or anything else that's not directly family-related) or playing with our children.
We have to constantly be talked off ledges.
until next time...
please children, sleep
please Seattle Schools, let my child get into a GOOD SCHOOL

Friday, January 18, 2008

you don't know what you've got...

'til it's GONE!
This week, our water heater broke.
And it didn't just break, it went down in flames.... literally. The dang old thing had a slow leak from the top of the VERY RUSTY tank. The leak eventually creeped its way into the electrical panel and with a spark and small fire, stopped working.
A funny side-story: The kids' bath on Tuesday night was a little tepid, so it was a fast one and SM went down to the basement afterwards to check out the heat issue. We're remodeling our house (new master suite... woohoo)so we figured that had something to do with it, and sure enough there was a blown fuse. So SM dutifully flipped the fuse and we all went to bed. The next morning we woke up and SM was first to shower. He came running out of the bathroom - dry and in a panic - "there's no hot water?!?!?!". We had a school tour and busy work days so we cleaned ourselves the best we could and decided to figure it out that night. After dinner SM went back down to the basement and sure enough, the fuse had blown again, so he flipped it and simultaneously sparked a stinky/scary electrical fire AND heard his 21-mo old daughter screaming bloody murder.
I've never seen a man run up the stairs so quickly.... really funny to me - quite the OPPOSITE for him.
Another very stinky/cranky/nutty day later, my wonderful father put in a new water tank and we were all taking hot showers/baths again by last night.
This morning was a normal morning. We got our showers and got dressed and by the time we were heading down for breakfast my dad arrived to continue work on the master and he said "you know, things are alot calmer this morning than yesterday". Funny - I'm pretty sure this is the #1 reason I don't camp. I psychologically and physiologically can't function without my shower. And it's obviously genetic cuz my kids can't either. ;o)

until next time....
appreciate your hot water - you'll really miss it when it's gone

Friday, January 11, 2008

kindergarten? really?!?!?

This weekend marks our official "start" to kindergarten shopping. Why do I have to go kindergarten shopping you ask? Well, it's because in Seattle the public schools seem to really be a hit or a total miss.
In our case, we live right across the street from a school where I'd hoped my children would go, but may not be welcome.
I grew up in Cincinnati, OH and went to public schools. They were very racially mixed (actually - there were really just 2 races: white & african american and not much else, but mixed between those 2 at least) and I really appreciated that and wanted the same for my children. That's part of why we live so close to the city and in the area we do.
So right now we have a possibly tough and confusing road ahead of us. If you read the article linked above you might better understand my "woes". I actually welcome a diverse student body, I feel like one of the best ways to help our children grow up color blind, is to put them in an environment that includes as many colors as possible. That at least gives them the opportunity to form their own opinions. The issue with Madrona K-8 is not that it's diverse, it's a little bit the test scores, but mostly it's the unwillingness to (or maybe inability) to account for ALL kids.
So fine, no biggie, we don't send the kids across the street.
Then where? In the central cluster the schools are completely polar. They're either really really good, or really really bad (keep in mind, this judgment is solely based on test scores - we don't start school tours until next week - and I'll update my opinions as we go). This weekend there is a kindergarten fair where we get to chat with all of these schools and next week we start touring.
I'm still trying to accept the fact that my baby bear is old enough to (almost) go to kindergarten!
This is a process that I'm dreading, but hopefully it won't be so bad. I think I've decided to just see how it goes for the next couple years, and if it all falls apart we'll either move or maybe save enough for private school.
until next time...
it really shouldn't be this hard

Monday, January 7, 2008

the pigs were a disaster....


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This weekend there were these mini potbellied pigs that have been on Letterman that were performing at a local community center and baby bear, diva and I were ready to go. We got out of the house a little late, but were arriving at start-time which isn't bad for us.
NO parking.... people everywhere.... Finally found a precarious spot to park and as we were walking toward the pigs - another family was walking back to their car.
Everyone in Seattle went to go see these dang pigs.
Except us.
What a disaster. Baby bear stood on the corner, started crying and pointing at the community center. The Diva was starting to get angry. She didn't know what was going on but kept repeating "piggies piggies" and couldn't figure out why we were standing on the corner in the rain when she was promised PIGGIES!
I was at a loss.
I decided to pry them away with pancakes. 'Course the place I wanted to go ALSO had no parking and a line.
Finally baby bear cried "UNCLE!" and just wanted to go back home and play. So that's where we went.
Top Pot saved the day... as you can see.

until next time...
if you're going to go to see the pigs, LEAVE EARLY!

Holidays were good this year


The kids had a blast, and still are, with all their toys. They go back and forth playing with their own and each others' and are mostly well behaved.
And you can't tell from that last photo, but it did snow on Christmas Day. Sadly, it was during naptime - both kids missed it.
oh well...
Hope everyone enjoyed every minute possible.

until next time....
get that tree down and recycle!

Friday, January 4, 2008

patience kindness and health

The Soup Family Resolutions have been "published", now let's see what happens.
So far we're off to a bit of a "rocky" start. The diva has decided she's unable to fall asleep on her own and if she wakes up in the middle of the night (once every hour!) she can NOT be alone.
This has led to screaming for hours on end as we try different tactics, all of which are resulting in mommy & daddy getting NO sleep!
I was recommended a book to try and while I haven't read all of it (the no-cry sleep solution if you want to know) and one of the solutions that I've read about so far include having siblings sleep together in the same room. Baby bear has been wanting to sleep with the diva for months, well maybe years, so last night he got his wish.
Last night marked the first time in a handful of attempts that the two of them slept in the same room successfully at our house. I, of course, have to point out that they've been sleeping in the same room at Grandma & Grandad's since the diva was 6 months old, but somehow it's never translated well back at home.
Hopefully it gets better and better.
Hopefully we all remember our resolutions.
We've needed so much patience lately it's been nearly impossible to keep it going.
but I think we can
until next time...
patience, kindness and health to you all and happy 2008