Monday, April 13, 2015

March 2015 Pics

The Winter soccer team.
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ZJ found the perfect book in IJ's class. I've ordered her one.
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Over spring break the kids helped pack produce bags at the food bank.
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ZJ started swim lessons.
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IJ started Spring soccer and lost his first tooth the morning of the first game!
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We attended a fun run to raise money for CHD awareness and to send capes to kids with CHD like ZJ received. Some of IJ's school friends joined our team.
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IJ loves to play dress up lately and created this lovely evening gown out of two capes.
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Tuesday, March 10, 2015

IJ's team performance

IJ and his kindergarten team competed at a tournament last Saturday. Here's their performance.

February 2015 Pics

100th day of school. Making a cereal necklace with 100 Os was just one of the activities that day at school.
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IJ's class garden.
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ZJ had her annual cardiology appointment and doesn't have to go back for 18 months. Everything looked good.
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A rare soccer practice that wasn't freezing.
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IJ and I made cute pencil Valentines for his class.
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My Valentines from the kids.
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Delivering lettuce from the garden to a neighbor.
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Her first haircut! She actually let me cut it.
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Go Texan day.
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We went to a party with face painting and horses.
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Tiger face take 2.
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Thursday, February 12, 2015

ZJ is 40 months old!

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ZJ suddenly likes to play with her toys and will actually entertain herself nicely. She plays with her Gabba figures, Peppa figures or our dinosaurs and make them have big conversations. She loves to play with her brother. They pretend to be doctors or nurses frequently, like to dress up and play all kinds of other strange games. ZJ is into board games now also. She's been drawing faces for a few months now but doesn't want to draw anything else. She can color pretty well but doesn't want to lately. We gave the kids an iPad for Hanukkah and ZJ has enjoyed playing some "just for fun" games but also a few that have helped her a lot with her counting and alphabet. ZJ announced her favorite color was orange back before her 3rd birthday and continued with that for several months. Then a few weeks ago switched it to purple and then started changing her favorite color every week or so.

Her first soccer season ended in November and she started another one in January. This time we go on Friday mornings. She is still in the 2-3 year old class where they don't really play soccer, just games to learn skills. During November and December ZJ had a weekly Kindermusik class which she says she loved and asks to go back every time we go by. She also offers to use the money in her bank when I tell her it was expensive. Compared to the other kids she followed instructions quite well and participated nicely. When that ended we started attending the weekly preschool story time at the library near our last house. The one by us isn't very nice and I hadn't thought to try the other one until recently. The librarian does a really good job and each class has a theme with stories, songs and a craft at the end. ZJ loves listening to the stories but gets uncomfortable when all the kids sing and dance. I think she's self conscious about not knowing the songs like many of the other kids do. They also have a preschool music class twice a month that I'm trying to get her to warm up to and consider it a replacement for her kindermusik.

Right before Thanksgiving IJ got the flu. He gave it to me and then ZJ got it. She actually did well and recovered quicker than anyone else. After ZJ's 3rd birthday I started working on her using the toilet to poop. It was tough but she finally got used to it and was doing pretty well. Then we had a big setback by her getting very loose stools that she seemed to not be able to control. This went on for 5 weeks before we finally visited the doctor and ran some tests and had an xray. It turned out she had dilated her colon likely from withholding poop so much and she needed to have stool softeners for weeks to fix the problem. Once we were about a month into this treatment, ZJ got what appeared to be impetigo around her mouth. Then she started complaining her skin hurt everywhere and she started turning red. We took her to the doctor the next morning who notices her throat was white and said she likely had strep throat. We started antibiotics and waited for her to get better for a few days while she continued to get worse and worse. Her skin turned red everywhere, she blistered, she would have what looked like scratch marks as her skin just split open, she was stiff and barely moved and screamed at us not to touch her. We finally spoke to the doctor again when she started turning purple. That was when she said it didn't sound like strep, the culture hadn't grown and we should take her to the ER. NJ took her in around 7 pm while I stayed with IJ. He was in the ER until about 2 in the morning when he finally got a room. I took IJ to school and met them the next morning. They figured out that she was suffering from staph scalded skin syndrome. She began new antibiotics during the night and when I saw her mid morning shew was already back to herself. She was able to cuddle and move without pain and was much happier despite being quite angry and scared about being in the hospital and having doctors and nurses bothering her. Once home her skin started to peel and every day she looked better than the last. Then her hands and feet peeled in big sheets of skin and they are still doing so. After recovering from this I went back to working on the toilet using and she finally seemed cured of her pooping problems. She went right back to using the toilet for pooping, as long as she was naked. She would even take herself to the toilet without any assistance. We did this for a while and then went out and bought her new underwear (she's only used IJ's old ones so far). She is using what I've called her final potty sticker chart. I'm keeping her in underwear and pants at home and she has to take herself to the toilet and remove them before pooping to get stickers now. This is challenging for her but she does it well at times. She gets her new underwear when she's mastered it.

ZJ finally sleeps pretty well. She was consistently going to sleep in her bed and then, instead of yelling for us to get her, she just sneaks into our room and climbs into bed, sometimes without even waking us. Ever since she was in the hospital she wants to go to sleep in our bed instead of hers. She has put herself to sleep a few times but typically still requires me and she resists falling asleep early enough to wake up when she needs to on school days.

Friday, February 6, 2015

January 2015 Pics

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On IJ's first day back to school after the holidays I checked on the class' garden and the radishes were ready to harvest.
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A self portrait IJ whipped up before school one day. His skills sure have improved.  photo Picture14_zpsodulsaux.png

IJ attended a birthday party at a local bakery. They got to make pizzas and decorate cakes.  photo Picture13_zps9hag3s6i.png

Weird child is weird.
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Unbeknownst to us, ZJ spent several days home suffering from staph scalding syndrome.  photo Picture11_zpsvauwofrm.png

ZJ, already feeling so much better after getting the appropriate treatment in the hospital.  photo Picture10_zpsytfxrymo.png

Back at the Dr when IJ started showing early symptoms of staph scalding syndrome (not feeling bad yet).
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The only way both kids would take their antibiotics, mixed with a homemade chocolate sauce.  photo Picture8_zpsutgqwuhz.png

IJ looking bad despite extraordinarily early treatment.  photo Picture6_zpsfvouifoq.png

Feeling better.
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IJ learned about different tooth fairy customs and beliefs.  photo Picture5_zps5pmbmgtp.png

ZJ and I have been doing story time and music class at a local library.  photo Picture4_zpsrpocrflk.png

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ZJ is in her second soccer season and got a cool new hat at class. She's the only girl in the group this time.
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IJ is in his first season of "real" soccer, having one weeknight practice and weekend game. NJ and I are coaching his team.
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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Winter Trip

The Monday before New Year's we went on our longest family road trip yet. We were headed to New Mexico but 2 hours into the drive our car broke down. We had to wait almost an hour for a tow truck to take us to a dealership in San Antonio.
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After four wasted hours we were on our way in a rented SUV, leaving our car in San Antonio to be worked on.  We purchased a used iPad for the kids and it was a big help in getting us through the long drive.
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We arrived at our first destination, a cabin in Ruidoso, around bedtime.
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A view of the RV park from our cabin:
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Deer were walking around the streets and eating.
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We got up Tuesday morning and went out to breakfast. When we came out of the restaurant it was snowing.
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The restaurant was also a bakery and they bring out bread dough for the kids to play with.
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After breakfast we bought a $5 sled and some rope, found some hills and went sledding. I received free snow gear from someone getting rid of it a few weeks before the trip.
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The next day we left Ruidoso and headed for Las Cruces. After checking in to our hotel we took the kids to a park.
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We then all got cleaned up and ready for a wedding...the whole reason behind our trip to NM.
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Just married!
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The next day, before we headed home we went to White Sands and had more sledding fun.
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Neal pulling ZJ.
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Mid-day we were on our way back to TX. As evening approached we drove straight into a TX winter storm. The roads were icy and littered with overturned 18 wheelers. We were crawling along and realized we weren't going to make it to our reserved hotel room.
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We called all the hotel rooms in the area and there were no rooms available anywhere. We had to sleep in our vehicle in a hotel parking lot. The kids slept at least. It was freezing and horribly uncomfortable.
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The next morning we helped ourselves to the complimentary hotel breakfast, called around to check on the roads and headed out. We knew we'd have some miles of ice but it would improve after a bit so we just crept along for a while.
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We got back to San Antonio that afternoon and luckily our car was just about ready. We made it home around 7 that night.