Dean Family Blog

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I Need A Hug
Wow...2 is going to be a challenge. Josiah has perfected the whiny thing and is making incredible progress with temper tantrums. He can turn them on and off with amazing speed and it's all exacerbated by the fact that he seems to be cutting another set of molars. Oh yea! While Philip cut the grass today Josiah threw a royal fit that lasted an hour and ten minutes. Most of the time he was screaming, "I need a hug," which doesn't really mean he wants a hug, it's just turned into a manipulative thing he does when he isn't getting his way and wants you to stop everything else. So I went from trying to give him a hug (doesn't work) to trying to reason with him (yes, I'm an idiot) to putting him in his crib to calm down (didn't work) to ignoring him (didn't work) to thinking of spanking him. I say 'thinking' because by this time I was way too angry with him to consider this option and I don't think it would have done any good anyway. Then, all of a sudden, he asked where his water was and stopped crying...and acted like nothing had happened! I have no idea how to deal with this. This is not what I imagined motherhood would be like when we started thinking about a family.

Grace has been doing well with the new schedule and we're averaging 6-7 hours a night (hallelujah!). It's amazing that she's already almost 3 months old. Looking at pictures of her we can tell how old she is by the length of her hair (which is already down on her back). She's still not a fan of the bottle, but we're motivated to keep trying because we want a date! She's been smiling and cooing a lot lately and likes flirting with people when we go shopping (THIS is what I imagined).

Philip and I have finished a month of our push up challenge and are a little scared of the coming week. We haven't had to repeat a week yet, but we may not be able to say that by next weekend. Both of us are doing over 100 push ups now on work out days, but not consecutivley yet. I still don't see how that's going to happen, but I didn't think I'd get this far to begin with, so maybe it'll happen. I'm still trying to get ready for my race in a couple weeks, but it looks like I'll be walking it. My knee has been giving me fits when I run and I finally broke down and went to the doctor. I'm waiting to schedule an MRI, but it sounds like I've got a cartilage tear. Bummer.


My Husband Is A Major Smart Alec
Anyone who's ever spent longer than, say, 5 minutes with me knows I have a bladder the size of a pea. So while the midnight feedings, poop explosions and temper tantrums I put up with on a daily basis are all entitling me to all the privileges I will (hopefully) someday have as a grandparent, it's really the 9 months I spent with someone sitting on my 'biddy biddy' (as Josiah would say) bladder that I will throw back in my kids' faces when they try to tell me I've never done anything for them.

You would think my loving husband would sympathize with me, but instead he's a smart alec and puts up a post about on my facebook wall. What's A 'premiere toilet search engine' for the 'discerning, on-the-go defecator who is brave enough to use a public bathroom, but still demands a hygienic and private bathroom experience.' Thanks, honey.

Since I'm obviously not going to get any sympathy at home I decided I might as well make the best of my 'on-the-go' businness. I've been thinking about what I would put on a list of things I want to do before I die...go to Portugal, run a half marathon, get all the toys out of my living room...and I think using 1 million public restrooms will make the list. Some of the other items will take the rest of my life to achieve, but this one seems doable in the near future.


Blow Drying Pink Bulldozers
After hours of Josiah begging me for a pink bulldozer (I have NO idea where this came from) and being totally unsuccessful in putting him off by telling him he'd have to ask Daddy for one when he got home, I decided we'd just have to make one. So while I'm making dinner, trying to calm down Gracie (who isn't liking the new schedule) and clean up a bit, I'm also rummaging in the recycling for things I can hot glue together to make a bulldozer. I'll admit, my product didn't look like much, but I was still a little deflated when I handed it to him and he pouted and told me, 'Mama, bulldozer NOT fun!' Apparently it's not fun until it's pink. So I got out the paints and slapped some pink on it and was trying to make it dry faster with a blow dryer...when Philip walked in and just laughed. Now I have an ugly pink thing on my counter and Josiah has decided he never really wanted it in the first place. Punk.

More Buffday
Nanny and Pappa came with 'more buffday' this weekend. Thanks to EmmaJo, Josiah got another birthday cake (very yummy by the way) and then he got to open his gift. He is now the extremely proud owner of a Thomas train and motorized track. I may never see the top of my coffee table again (it had been covered in a butcher paper train track for several weeks already). He sleeps with Thomas, plays with him for most of his waking hours and Thomas even has to watch us eat during meals. Josiah spent most of this weekend walking around the table saying 'chuga chuga choo choo' (with a southern twang for some reason).

Gracie has been giving us a run for our money lately. She isn't sleeping through the night yet, in fact she was up 3 times on Friday night. As if that wasn't enough, she woke up in the morning and pooped all over herself and my pillow and soon after threw up all over herself, me and my pillow (we're going through a lot of pillow cases lately). She's also decided the only person she'll take a bottle from is Philip...which totally defeats the purpose of a bottle because they're supposed to be used so we can go on dates. Thankfully she's absolutely adorable and gives great smiles. It's hard to stay mad at her when she does that. Philip and I came up with a slightly different schedule for her last night and we're going to give it a try this week. I'm really hoping she's sleeping through the night by the time we go to Texas.

Ok, better wrap this up. I'm trying to concentrate on what I'm writing and it's hard with Elmo singing in the background. Josiah is sick, so he gets to watch Sesame Street this morning. We're headed to the doctor's office in a bit to see what's going on.

...turns out what's going on is a viral sore throat thing. We're now under quarantine for the next 3 days and I have really whiny kiddo.


A Line backer Goes To The Fair
We spent Monday at the Iowa State Fair and had a blast! After feeding Grace at 4:30am we all loaded up in the car and headed to Des Moines. It was a loooooong day, but worth it. Josiah absolutely loved the model trains (we spent over an hour just standing there letting him watch them) and the only way we got out of the building without a major melt down was for Philip to videotape them so Josiah could watch them at home. We saw tons of cool animals and ate crazy amounts of fried food (yum!). Where else can you eat a funnel cake for dinner? Josiah rode the carousel, watched Bob the Builder and climbed on real John Deere tractors. The kids did really well and I'm pretty sure this will become a yearly Dean trip.

We visited a building focusing on the birth of all kinds of barnyard animals. While Josiah and Philip walked around and looked at piglets and calves I rocked Gracie in her sling and stood with the stroller. I was enjoying watching the people and animals until an older lady came up and grabbed Gracie's foot (which she insists on sticking out of the sling while she's sleeping) and opened up the sling to look at her! Then in an insanely loud voice started talking to her and brought her granddaughter over to show her the baby! I suddenly felt really bad for all the animals in the room that we were gawking at and tried to pry Grace's foot out of her hand so she could go back to sleep. It is not fun being a side show.

Both kids had their check ups yesterday and are doing fine. Grace is 11 pounds and 22.5 inches (way to grow girl!). She's in the 50th percentile for everything. Josiah, on the other hand, has been sneaking Miracle Grow apparently. He's 29 pounds (75th percentile) and 36.5 inches (90th percentile) and has a big head. We knew he'd gone through a growth spurt, but didn't realize it was that big. I guess this explains why people keep thinking he's 3 or 4 years old already.

He is very proud that he is now 2 and is thoroughly loving being the birthday boy. Since his party was Saturday, birthday was Monday and another gift and some cards arrived in the mail yesterday, he's convinced that his birthday will just keep going. When the box came yesterday he got excited that there was 'more buffday' and almost lost it when the box had a John Deere tractor in it! Nanny and Pappa are coming this weekend, so I suppose the 'buffday' will continue.


Back hoes and trains
We're celebrating Josiah's birthday today (it's really on Monday). I can't believe my little boy is already two...and at the same time I can't believe it's only been two years (long days, short years). The only thing he actually asked for was balloons and to play with Leah, so he woke up to a kitchen full of balloons and we invited some of his friends, including Leah, over for his party. The two of us spent the hour before Gracie woke up piling up the balloons and running through them and having a breakfast picnic on the living room floor, complete with a birthday candle in his banana. He seemed to think a flaming banana was pretty cool.

I finished the back hoe cake last night at 10pm and it turned out pretty good. The real test was whether or not Josiah could tell what it was supposed to be...he did (whew!). I sure was glad because it was NOT as simple as the website said it would be, but it was worth it and fun. So at 9am we rounded up 4 toddlers and gave them plates full of sugar. Nothing like a frosted Twinkie for breakfast! What was even cooler was that we moved the nap cam into the dining room and called all the grandparents so they could watch the party (sorry for leaving you hanging so's not easy to round up toddlers who are intent on pulling every toy out of the toy box). He loved having everyone sing Happy Birthday to him and got to eat his very first gum drop (they're choking hazards, so they're usually off limits).

This weekend just happens to be Sauerkraut Days in town...I have no idea why it's called that. We don't grow cabbage around here and I don't think there are many Germans. We're a little town, I suppose all the cool names were taken. Anyway, we all headed to town so the kids could see the petting zoo, tractors, geriatric square dancers, very unsafe carnival rides (including a 'carris' wheel) and weird people. Josiah got to ride a little train and absolutely refused to smile for the camera.

All in all, I'd say it was a successful celebration. He still has a couple gifts to open this afternoon and we're going to the Iowa State Fair on Monday, so the party will continue!


Japanese Beetles Roasting On An Open Fire
Yup, we roasted beetles tonight. Our bug bags were full and emptying them into soapy water didn't seem to kill them. So what's a boy to do? Douse 'em with gasoline and torch 'em, of course! You know what they say, the family that cooks bugs together stays together (partially because everyone else thinks they're weird and keeps their distance).

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