Dean Family Blog

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Climbing the Hill
30 doesn't qualify as over the hill, but I'm pretty sure I've started at least climbing it. I realize it's not that old, but it sounds really weird to say that I'm in my 30s...I've become one of those people I used to think was ancient when I was a kid. I am very thankful to have Philip and our beautiful kiddos because it makes me feel like I've accomplished something in the past 10 years. And now that I'm really a grown up I suppose I can do all those things I swore I'd do when I was a eating ice cream for every meal and staying up as late as a want...except now I know I'll just have to work out longer to compensate for the ice cream and I'm too tired to stay up any later than necessary. Maybe we should let Josiah do these things now while he can enjoy them...naw.

I had a good day yesterday. Josiah and I shared a cookie (he shared very reluctantly) at the coffee shop, played outside in the wonderful Texas-like weather (first time we hit 90s this felt great), and Philip brought home flowers and a birthday dough nut (a whole cake is kind of overkill with a family our size). We all went for a walk after dinner and the kids went to sleep without too much trouble. I'd say it was a pretty successful day.

Because it was so hot I thought Josiah would want to play in his pool so I stripped him down and let him go for it. I figured, who needs swim trunks when no one can really see us anyway? Within the span of 10 minutes we had one friend and 2 delivery people show up. Yes, this is the hick house with little naked kids running around. Jeez.

Congratulations to Kelly and Matt on the birth of baby Camille! We're very excited for you.


Be Quiet!
Whoever said that boys develop verbally slower than girls has obviously not met our son. HE WON'T BE QUIET!!! His mouth just never stops and if I try to ignore him it only makes it worse because he'll keep saying whatever phrase he's stuck on until I repeat it. It is wonderful to know what he's thinking and to be able to communicate with him, but I'm thinking we should have spent longer working on sign language. I'd had enough the other day and had a mini fit (you know, screaming, stopping my feet...all that very mature behavior) and Josiah just stared at me for about 10 seconds and then died laughing. This was not the response I was going for. I'm not really sure what I wanted, but that wasn't it. In that moment I also realized the irony of yelling at someone to be quiet. Time to go back to taking 10 deep breaths.

With all the rain here we have a bunch of baby frogs around the house, which Josiah thinks is really cool. We kept pointing them out to him last night until he maimed one and, we're pretty sure, ate another one. Yuck! That might be grosser than the grasshopper last year. Maybe he'll be a fan of frog legs like Sadie.

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Rolling, rolling, rolling
Turns out that loading all that mulch last week did really nasty things to Philip's head (we're assuming that's what did it). He spent half of his long weekend feeling like his head was going to explode and running a fever that wouldn't budge. I managed to find a clinic and pharmacy that were open yesterday so he could get some antibiotics started for what was obviously a sinus infection. There's still a bit of sniffling over here today, but he's upright and making sense again. Thank God for medicine!

The kids and I cleared out of here Sunday morning so Philip could try to sleep...only to find out there was no Sunday school because it was a holiday weekend. Josiah thought this was cool because he got to go to the coffee shop and have a scone and ride the mechanical horse. I had talked him into trying out the 'big kid' room during church instead of staying in the baby nursery. He was excited to read about Jesus in a Bible, until the 'big' kids arrived and were REALLY loud. I tried leaving him, but was pulled out of church so Gracie and I got to play in the 'big kid' room with him. I found out there are kids in there that are a full 2 years older than him...maybe it's time to go back to the nursery for a few more months.

Since Josiah assumes anyone sitting on the couch is there to play with him (which was not Philip's wildest dream yesterday) I took both kids to bible study with me last night, only to have Josiah break down again. When I realized I was going to spend the whole time in the playroom holding him I decided it was time to go home. I thought he had all his molars in, but he's really acting like he's teething and all the snot and drool have returned. I'm really thinking baby dentures sounds like a pretty good deal.

Apparently he's not just a strawberry fiend. He will lie and steal to get pretty much any fruit. I can't take him with me to get the raspberries anymore because he grabs them and shoves them in his mouth as fast as he can. Once again it doesn't matter that they're green and still have leaves and branches (and bugs!) attached. I keep catching him raiding the bag of grapes when we're shopping too. Whenever I turn my back he pops them in his mouth, right after he's promised to leave them alone. I suppose I should be grateful he loves fruit so much.

And on a final note, he learned how to really throw his sister for a loop...literally. I had Gracie laying on his blanket on the floor and he decided he needed it. Of course when he yanked it out from under her she went rolling across the floor and face planted. Once again he seemed surprised that she didn't enjoy the ride. Poor kid (she's fine).

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Happy 4th
We had a good 4th of July yesterday. Philip helped a friend get a load of mulch and in the process talked one of the tree removal companies into dumping a load out here. We have enough to start mulching parts of the woods, which will be really nice. He's worked on clearing big parts of it over the last few years and this should make the area more usable. All of us headed out to a friends' house for the afternoon for a cook out and it was interesting to watch Josiah with all the older kids. He's not usually around that many kids and he just stood back and watched them as they played on the swing set and sand box until he could figure out what to do. By the end of the night he had overcome his aversion to sand and was digging with the rest of them. We headed on home early for bed time...the kids and ours. I was sound asleep by the time fireworks started and I don't think Philip was far behind. The whole 'nap when the kid naps' thing doesn't work so well with 2 of them, so bedtime is a sacred time and fireworks just don't compare. Man, I'm old.

We're almost 5 weeks into this 2-kid thing and it's going much better than either of us expected. We've paid attention the last few years to friends and family as their families grew and had it in our heads that this transition would be pretty tough. Maybe I'm speaking too soon and I certainly wouldn't call it easy, but it's not nearly as big an adjustment as we went through when Josiah came. A big part of that is that Gracie sleeps more at night and is getting on her schedule easier. We've had 2 days (and more importantly, nights) of Grace sticking really close to schedule. When she does that Philip and I end up with an hour at night with both kids asleep at the same time before we need to head to bed. An hour of uninterrupted adult conversation is a real treat at this point!

It's been awhile since we've had a favorites update...

Food:'fawberries' (strawberries), 'buberries', 'rasberries', 'nyogurt', pretzels

Games: playing with Larry, pushing his 'geen tatcor' (green tractor), taking all the cushions off the couch, running around naked outside, and jumping on the heavy big bed with Daddy

Books: Monster Trucks, Big Wheels, Dirty Pigs

Shows: Thomas and Friends, Curious George

Grace's favorites are pretty easy.

Food: Milk

Games: being held, pooping

Books: um, none

Shows: she likes when her brother is watching one of his shows so he will leave her alone

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Don't Play On The Tractor Naked
Add that to the list of things I never thought I'd say. One of Josiah's favorite things to do is climb on Philip's riding mower...with or without clothes.

Gracie has grown quite a bit in the last month. I took her in to be weighed yesterday and she's up to 8 lbs, 12oz and 21 inches. She's being a bit of a patoot about her schedule, but I suppose that's to be expected. We're in a power struggle about whether or not 8pm-12am is playtime. Philip and I are very sure it is not, but she's convinced otherwise. It's making the morning workout really tough to face.

Josiah's new favorite toy (at least for today) is his Larry that Nanny and Pappa brought this weekend (it's like a Mr. Potato Head, but it's Larry from Veggie Tales). He walks around the house with it saying 'Larry Boy' at the top of his lungs. Larry had to go shopping with us this morning and he watches us eat all our meals. I suppose Josiah still thinks Gracie is pretty cool because he shared his Larry with her this evening when she was getting fussy. She didn't appreciate it, but I thought it was sweet.


A Full House
Gracie was dedicated this weekend at church and all of Philip's family made it over to celebrate with us. They had intended to get a hotel room in town since we don't really have spare rooms anymore, but because of the flooding the closest available room was an hour away. So we covered the house in mattresses and blankets and camped out together. It was actually a lot of fun and Josiah was in heaven with all his cousins here to keep him company. Mom and Erin held Gracie most of the weekend and between going out to celebrate Sadie's birthday and a church potluck I didn't even end up cooking much. At one point I realized I didn't have a child to entertain or a meal to cook and I had no idea what to do. Philip got much needed help with some outside projects and we all had time to relax and catch up. All in all, a good weekend. But Monday is here so it's time to mop, wash, sweep, vacuum and scrub...
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Strawberry Fiend
After starting our strawberry patch over with runners last fall we didn't know if we'd get much of anything this year, but we've had a modest crop. Josiah has been in heaven and would eat strawberries for 3 meals a day if we let him. I'd been taking him out to the garden while the berries were developing so he could see how they grew, so I thought he'd enjoy helping us pick them. I was right, but it's not working quite like a planned (I'm learning that's how most of parenting goes). He did really well the first time. Only one plant was stomped to death and he only picked red berries. Since then we've gone down hill. He's still careful about where he steps, but I realized more berries were ending up in his mouth than the bowl. I figured if I picked a little faster than him I could get to the berries before he did, but when I turned around his mouth was full again! Turns out he's not exactly a picky eater...the berries with bugs and those that are white go down the hatch with the good ones! Before I could stop him yesterday he ate one berry with the leaves...and the 4 inch long stem (and the berry was white). We have to bribe him to eat broccoli, but he happily muches stems. Go figure.

I also had to put this up here...Josiah 'helped' me clean Philip's car last night (I washed and vacuumed it while he crawled all over the inside...spreading poo from an exploding diaper as he went...yuck!). So obviously he needed a bath, during which he informed me that he was a dolphin named Janice that liked to swim, eat shrimp, play with cars and balls and live in Josiah's house. Nothing wrong with his GI system or his imagination!


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