Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The embarrassing moment of realization....

...that we need another child.

Cooper and I are home now and there are things I would like to share with you, but I still have some moments from our trip I would like to share.

My cousin, David, and his wife, Keri, had a daughter, Daisy, a little over a month after Cooper was born. According to Gramma they are 45 days apart. I cannot confirm this math, but you get the idea. So, we got Daisy and Cooper together to play. When Daisy came over Cooper was still asleep. So, she got used to her new surroundings, and started playing with some of the toys we had around the house. When Cooper got up, mortifying moments followed. I'm not sure if it was because he was hungry, still tired, jealous, or territorial, but Cooper was not a kind boy to Daisy. We have been dealing with hitting issues for a couple of months now, but it's usually to either Andrew or myself. Cooper seemed to be doing better; boy were we wrong with our thinking! Cooper gave Daisy a good whack. He got a verbal warning. Then another, which a spanking followed. Then another, and another spanking. Then another, and a time out. Then another, and Gramma whacked him that time. Shortly after that we ate, which after that he was a completely different child. He and Daisy got along well after that.

I am not the bragging type of parent, but I do know that I have a wonderful boy. I also know that he has got some major challenges for us and himself because of his personality. I am not naive to this at all and will tell anyone who asks. However, seeing him being completely defiant even after consequences that until this point have worked, was an embarrassing moment as a mother. My mostly obedient child displayed completely disobedient behavior. I prayed a lot that day for Cooper and for Andrew and I. We somehow have to figure out to channel this side of Cooper's personality for God's glory.

It was also the moment I realized...we NEED another child. Not just a want anymore, but a need. We desire for Cooper to learn to share, cooperate, and be loving, even when he doesn't want to. I hope another child will help this. I know it won't cure it, but it will help. Please pray for God's will in this area of our life.

On to some pictures. I will title this sequence of pictures "Daisy Kay and Cooper Play". Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Cake Disappointment

I have had the privilege of having wonderful people go before me and leave legacies. One of those is my mother. My mother is an extremely gifted cook and I have said numerous times that I have a lot to live up to in the cooking department. Yesterday I struggled living up to that legacy. It was Pappaw's birthday. What do you get someone who is 88? I decided a cake was the right choice. The pan I made it in was a little bigger than a regular 9x13 pan. I decided instead of it being thin, I would carve it into something or layer it. The final decision was layering it. I cut the cake into two pieces and stacked them, trimmed around the edges, and began icing it. I didn't have enough icing to put in the middle and around it, so I just did a thin layer of it. Then I decided it would be a "grand" idea to make home-made icing to put on top of it all to make it look presentable. WRONG IDEA. Let me back up some...lemon cake, lemon icing, then home-made chocolate icing. Kind of gross, but I was trying to salvage it. So, made the icing, and as I spread it it hardened, making the spreading part difficult. Eventually there was a crack down part of it, making it look like someone's bottom. Sad, pathetic cake. I said several times my mother would be very disappointed.

Happy Birthday, anyway, Pappaw!

Still enjoying our trip.
We're here 3 more days.
Think I could convince Andrew to move here?

Saturday, June 11, 2011

"Tack, Tack"

"tack tack" is the sound a duck makes. I've never realized before this trip just exactly how many figurine ducks gramma has around her house. Cooper has been gracious enough to allow this realization. So, he goes from duck to duck saying "tack tack". Rumor had it that Uncle Dusty has possession of some real ducks. So last night Carrie and I took Cooper to see the ducks. By the end of our visit we realized we may have just instilled a deep fear of ducks in Cooper due to a traumatic scene. Those who were with me last night are much better story tellers than I am, but I'm the one writing it down, so my story will have to suffice.

Upon arrival at Dusty and Tena's Cooper met the dogs, cats, and a new kitten. He climbed in a cage, and walked around holding some dog food (which he may have actually swallowed a bite of...he put it in his mouth, and by the time I got to him it was gone. He either swallowed it or spit it out after hearing the loud gasps of "noooooo"). We then ventured around to the frond of the house where the ducks were. The ducks were with the chickens in the chicken house. All animals were happy, clucking and quacking the night away. Then, to their sudden terror a man and woman (Dusty and Tena) started banging on their home. Tena scared the ducks to the other side while Dusty grabbed one. This is probably when Cooper's lifelong fear begins. The animals started clucking and quacking, and flapping their wings in a crazy manner. When one was finally caught, the Duck threw up...yes, threw up...inside and out of the chicken house. At this point I'm saying that Cooper just needed to see the ducks, there is no need to cause such ruckus amongst the animals. I look at my child to see terror in his eyes. All the coaxing in the world couldn't get him to touch or pet the duck.

Cooper saw that maybe ducks were not as fun in real life as they were as a figurine, a plastic toy for the bath, or in a book. However, this morning, he didn't seemed to traumatized when he saw the non=real ducks. He still seemed excited to talk to the ducks around Gramma's house. Hopefully there is no lifelong fear there, but in the event that there is, we all now know why.

We are having a good time with family. Here are a few snapshots of our fun.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Plane Rides and Praises

Today Cooper and I flew to KY. We are spending the next 10 days in my home state. I can't even describe to you the excitement I have about spending this much time here. I haven't spend this much time here in a long time. I am ready to relax and play with Cooper in wide open spaces, fresh air, and some green grass that is soft enough to go barefooted.

Today I was quite nervous about flying with Cooper. He has flown on a plane 4 other times, but this was the first time flying with a mobile child. Not just mobile, but a personality that is curious about everything, social, and extremely active. Because I was traveling by myself with a child, they let me check my carry on bag for free. This made me relax immediately because it was stressful thinking about carrying cooper, my carry on bag, and a diaper bag all at the same time. We made it through security without much trouble...Cooper did crawl under the luggage track while I was putting the stroller back up (told you he was active). We had a potty break and I let him run around because I knew he wouldn't be able to walk around much after that. He climbed the chairs, tables, walked behind the counters, talked to the paintings on the walls, and talked to the "vacuums" (fire extinguishers - I never knew they looked similar until today).
I drugged him up, we loaded the plane, and I am happy to say he did really well. About 45 minutes to an hour into the flight, Cooper fell asleep. Ahhhhhhh. Breathe. Take in the sweet moment of holding my sleeping son in my arms. Because of the active instances listed above it is not often that I get to hold a sleeping Cooper.

I was brought to a prayer of praise in that moment. I praise God for my beautiful family (not just Andrew and Cooper - but my whole family). I praise God for great friends. And then it hit me: I need to praise God for our current struggle. I have never really blamed God about this, but realized while holding my precious child, that I had not yet praised God for the situation we are in. So, that's what I did. I praised God for the struggle our family of three is going through right now. I know that God has big plans for us, and I am trusting and relying on him to get us through it all. I know that situation has brought us closer together, closer to God, and given us wisdom. So, I ask that the next time you pray for us, please also praise God. He is way bigger than we are and hand it all over to him.

When we got off the plane, Cooper played shy for a couple minutes, but quickly warmed up and is now besties with Gramma and Grandpa (which sounds like "popaw" when he says it..he has yet to say gramma). We ate dinner and then let Cooper run around out back. It should be a great 10 days.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Heart Shaped Bruises and Water Park Play

I typed this post last night, but the pictures didn't load, so I'm trying again today and it seems to be working. Let's give it another try.

Yesterday Cooper got quite an injury. Walking in a parking lot, Andrew asked Cooper where our car was. When he found it, he started running. She tripped, fell, and has a scrape on his belly, cheek, and forehead. The bruise above the forehead is shaped like a heart. With a pure boy on my hands, this is not the first bruise, nor will it be the last I'm sure. At least it's fun to say his bruise is heart-shaped.

*Please excuse the food on his face...I took the picture during dinner*
What led up to the bruise was the most fun part of our day. We took a trip to the splash park. The city of Dunedin has a little slice of heaven at one of their parks: a splash park, or water playground. We took Cooper today for the first time and he LOVED it. There is nothing better than seeing your child with a look of pure excitement on their face. Below are a few pictures and a video of our time at the park.

It was quite a trek to the splash park, and as we were leaving Andrew said "Even though we weren't here that long, it was totally worth it". I couldn't agree more.

The rest of our day consisted of planting plants for our front walk, naps, reading, E3 watching, dinner, and a special trip to Mammaw's to deliver cake and flowers.

Today was spent doing laundry and packing because tomorrow Cooper and I are headed to kentucky to visit my family. I'm excited to see family, but I think everyone there is even more anxious to see Cooper. I can't promise a daily update there, but hope to update frequently for Andrew's sake (or those of you who find interest in reading about our life).

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Drawing Day Dinner

I have a very talented husband. Watching him the past few months has been one of the most excruciating events, as well as one of the most peaceful times I have ever gone through. In the midst of our ever-present search for what is next, my husband has grown so much and it seems he has aged overnight. I am quite proud of him and his accomplishments. One of the neatest things to have witnessed since February is Andrew's increased desire in art. God gave him an awesome gift of creativity. To show our support, Cooper and I participated with "Daddy" in Drawing Day.

Cooper choosing his colors.

Artist in training.

Cooper's Finished Product
My Finished Product
Andrew's Finished Product
Right before we had fun with drawing we ate dinner. Eating with Cooper is up and down every day. Some days he eats well; some days not. Some days he drinks all his fluids; some days he pushes them out of the way. We are experimenting with utensils and manners. Dinner time can be quite a stressful time. I have to tell myself that he is a healthy boy who is growing with great strides and not consume myself with fretting about it. If he eats what is in front of him: great. If not, oh well. *I do not fix him something else. He will either eat what is given to him or nothing* Judge all you'd like on that last comment.

Tonight we ate chicken pasta with broccoli and pesto sauce. It was a success. Halfway through the meal he decided he NEEDED to use my fork.

So, here you see Cooper using a very big fork.

This is his "All Done" sign. I thought it was an appropriate way to end this post.

All Done.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Farkle, my first post.

So, for whatever reason some of you have requested updates from me via a blog. Am I really that interesting? No. More like you want to hear about some updates about Cooper, and maybe a few updates about what is new in life.

Let me first begin with what is new: it is summer. This means I have a break from work. This means I can stay in my pjs as long as I want and spend time with Andrew and Cooper. Mostly, it means I will be a fun girl again, able to stay up late and play games with friends, and probably won't be as cranky or tired. Andrew and Cooper get mad props for putting up with me during the school year. So, here's to a relaxing summer when I can be more myself. Because it is summer, I figured it would be a good time to start this because I will have more time to do it. I would like to set a goal of updating daily with a "snapshot" of our day. While this goal excites me I can make no promises. You will have to keep me accountable to
frequent updates.

Onto the more interesting part for you readers: Cooper. Cooper is doing all sorts of crazy things that 15 month olds do. He is running. No, not walking, running. He loves to make people laugh and have all the attention. He is saying more words every day. His favorite words seem
to be: vacuum, broom, apple, Elmo, juice, paci, shoe, hi, and hello (which he holds the phone up to his ear when he does this, followed by other mumbling like he is actually talking on it). He is very good at repeating many words you say to him. Tonight's word he repeated: "Farkle"...which came outmore like "tackle".

Tonight I got out the wonderful game of farkle to see how he would react to all the dice, the noises, etc.

At first we began with shaking the dice in the container, rolling it out, and counting the dice while we put it back in. I got distracted by something and when I returned my attention to him, he had started stacking them on top ofthe container.

After this I stacked them up in one tall stack. I them blew them over and tried (but failed) to get him to blow them over. It was at this moment that he, out of nowhere, kissed me like 4 or 5 times. Such a sweet moment. That is when I decided this would be a good snapshot for today. When I got the camera out, he was all the sudden distracted by the big black camera and said "cheese" which sounded more like "chee". I have no idea where that came from.

So, there you are friends. My first blog post...all about farkle. Tomorrow is my last day, no students, just meetings and cleaning.