Pet names are a funny thing. My first dog was a beagle (I think). Her name was Heidi. I was too young to remember if I helped name her or how she got that name. Besides she didn't last for very long. She was hit by a car or something. I have one picture of her and every time I look at it, I want another Beagle. She was so cute...
Later we got the sweetest little springer spaniel mix. We wanted to name her Spot...yes it's true! I think I was only 6 or 7 though and all my siblings were younger. My parents wouldn't let us. So we named her Candy..."because she's so sweet!" We also had a gray and black cat, you know the kind with the stripes. Are those tabbys? Anyway, we named her "Zeba"...like Zebra, but not. Our parents were really nice to let us name our animals I guess.
We also had an orange tabby growing up. We named her "Esther" until we found out she was a HE. But you know what is so sad? We never changed his name....I've always felt bad for Esther. She lived a long full life, but ended up drinking some antifreeze or something. I remember her lying on our front porch unable to move. I just thought she was being a lazy stinker and so I shoved her with my foot trying to get her to move. (See...I still call the poor fellow her!) I feel bad about that to this day. Poor guy was probably in so much pain and there I am kicking the poor thing! We had to put him to sleep.
We also had a Malamute named Nikita...she was one of those purebred types and was really "Princess Nikita the 25th" or something, which is why her name isn't nearly so cool as our others. She had a litter of pups that were ADORABLE.
There was Joe...he didn't last long because he came after Candy. Candy was the best dog ever. She didn't bark or jump, unless someone she didn't know came in the yard. She was the perfect size. And she was quirky. She would sit on our fence and watch the cars drive by...just like a cat! I think they got Joe after I left for college, but he was a stupid dog, according to my dad. I don't know what happened to him.
There was also Dartanian, which I've since learned is totally the wrong way to spell that...he was a CUTE little stinker. He was a yellow lab mix and yes I named him after Chris O'Donnell's character in the The Three Muskateers. I love that movie and he's SO dreamy... I talked my parents into letting me get him. They made me promise I would take care of him. I don't know what happened, but one day he was just gone, with no warning at all. Maybe it was my crazy teenage brain, but I seriously thought I was doing OK. They gave me NO warning..."hey you need to do better with this dog..." Nope, he just disappeared. I was sad and have wanted a yellow lab since then, even though I'm not really a dog person at all.
(Dartanian with Kember)
My parents now own a pair of cats named George and Patsy. My sister's dog is Vince. The birds are Kelley and Gus Gus. We have Koko, which is an Indian name for night.
Princess Madeline the cat was named by Kelley (of course):
I like pet names because they can be so fun. It's not as big a deal as a child's name. Any of you have funny names for your pets?
So I have this cute little 5 year old girl that comes to the daycare every day. She is an absolute sweetheart and does really well with the kids most of the time. One day one of the boys was bugging her, probably Tyler....
Anyway, she says to me in the saddest, most frustrated voice: "He's making me CRAZY and I don't wanna be crazy!" It was everything she could do to hold it together and you could see it physically.
I always hate to do more than one post on one day because I'm afraid you won't read or comment on my older posts. But I get on a roll and get excited about things I want to blog about and if I don't do it when I think about it...it doesn't usually get done. So read my other posts from the past few days...
So I've tried to do this a few times with Tyler and he doesn't really like it. Last Sunday I got him out of the bath and did this "do":
He looked in the mirror and said "Mom I don't like fauxhawks....I look like an Indian..." Seriously don't know where he made that connection...Peter Pan maybe?
So he ended up with this darling do: If you know Tyler, this is a little funny because he's such a crazy little tyke. Far from the demure little Church boy he looks like here.
His favorite is "spiky hair", but most days because of mom's lack of initiative, he ends up with whatever he rolls out of bed with. It's sad but true. The other day I was gelling his hair and he asked "is it church day mom?" No son, mom just decided to actually put some effort into life today :)
And finally a recent picture of the cutie pie, Miss Maren. I really need to do an update blog with all the fun things she's doing. She is such an angel though...seriously the best baby in the world...not kidding! Guess I'll go find her and get a little cuddle time in before bed.
Have you ever noticed that a lot of families that have new babies also get new puppies? I always thought people like that were CRAZY! I mean come on...do you know how much work a baby is????
Today I had an epiphany and came up with a theory. I think Dad's sometimes have a harder time connecting with new babies at first. It's not that they don't like them, they just don't get as much joy from just sitting and holding and cuddling with them. At least my husband is like that. He really enjoys it when they get a little older and are more interactive with him. It's not that he doesn't enjoy holding her, but it's just different for dads. Besides that moms are usually doing the feeding and changing, etc. In addition Dad's attention from mom naturally decreases. Not only does Mom have a new baby to adore and dote on, they are also exhausted. The energy they have to put into the marriage relationship takes a dive for a little bit. (Call me a bad wife...but I'm sorry, something's gotta give until you can come up with a new equilibrium...)
So what does Dad do?
Get a new puppy to dote on. Because you see, puppies are interactive from the get go. They are instantly endearing with all their puppiness and you don't have to wait for them to play with you until they get older. Dad now has something to spend his time and attention on while mom takes care of the baby. A dog is, after all, a man's best friend.
I don't think the shelters here in Iron County care if you have your dogs outside or not. But since we are looking for a specific type of dog we don't have the selection here to find what we want (at least so far). The two places we have applied were up in SLC....
We were trying to adopt a yellow lab. Koko we got from Joey's brother, who couldn't keep her. Our cat was a stray. I think it's the responsible thing to do to adopt a pet, vs buying a new puppy. But apparently we aren't good enough to adopt from a shelter or rescue group. The reason????? We keep our dog outside. Really? You sure?
I know I know....dogs are social creatures, they love to be with their family...blah blah blah...
When I say blah blah, I don't mean that's it's not true. I just mean that I think there are much worse things we could do than keep our dog outside. I think we are very good dog parents. We gave her the WHOLE side yard all to herself. She's not chained or kept in a little dog run. Joey put in grass for her to lay on and a concrete pad to keep her out of the mud. She is out in the bigger part of the yard almost every day (except really cold ones in the winter when no one wants to go outside.) Those days Joey gives her special attention and usually lets her in the house for a bit. But the rest of the time she's out running and playing with the daycare kids. They wear her out like nobody's business. We take her out in the mountains with us and often on trips to grandparents houses. We even do doggie play dates with her friends. Yes...I'm serious. And we're trying to get her a friend because she likes other dogs so much.
Both our dog and cat are "fixed" and current on their shots. We do bring Koko in during the really cold part of the winter. Joey even bought her a heated water bowl. She is a happy well cared for dog. So what gives people? Come on! They are DOGS for crying out loud. I'm sorry, but animals are NOT people too....
Maybe I'm wrong on this too, but it sure seems crueler to crate an animal for 8 hours at night so they can sleep inside with their "pack" than to give them a good shelter, a warm blanket and a friend to cuddle with in the great outdoors. I'm not a dog so I don't know. But I do know this...I don't think the dog or I would be happy if they were inside. I'm just not really a dog person. Joey is the reason we have the dogs and I'm OK with that. Our kids love the animals, we take care of them and everyone is happy. But our house in not big enough for two dogs, especially not a big lab. It's already a mess all of the time and smells funny half of the time because of the daycare. Add two dogs to that and mamma's not a happy camper. And if mamma ain't happy....yep....you know it...
Anyway, so I guess it's a thing with shelters that you have to say you'll keep your dog inside. As a result we've been rejected for the two dogs we've been interested in adopting. It just seems crazy to me that an otherwise good home would be turned away. I mean we aren't perfect by any means....but I'll tell ya what...don't whine to me anymore about the shelters being overrun with animals that no one will take. We would take one if we could! Perhaps we should just tell a little white lie next time....
I've following this blog and praying for this boy for the past week or so. I think it's truly a miracle and testimony to the power of prayer and the love he has for his children. I hope maybe you enjoy the video and can see the miracles God performs every day in your life and in others.
Kelley is going to be in the Cinderella Ballet coming up next weekend. The shows will be Friday and Saturday night. Tickets are $10 a piece. The production is put on by the Cedar City Junior Ballet. Kelley doesn't have a big part, but I think it's going to be a superb production. It's a great way to support the arts and see something you might not normally get to see. We have to sell at least 15 tickets...do any of you want one???? Please let me know ASAP. I was supposed to have the money in by the end of January...oopps! Leave me a comment or send me an email. I will probably bugging you all on Facebook about it too....
Or: You never know what you've got until it's gone :(
(Warning: This post will be long...but possibly interesting so it might be worth reading ;) And I need your advice at the end!)
So here's the deal. I really like my milk. I drink it with every meal and usually a few times in between. I really like all the things that you can do with it: chocolate, cheese, cream cheese, ice cream, yogurt, butter (umm....real butter....), huge variety of desserts and sweets, breads, etc.
But I've decided Milk might be the bane of my existence! OK, so that's a really strong statement. But hear me out. Several years ago I heard a nutritionist talk about the problems with milk. He pointed out that we are the only mammals that: 1)Drink milk from another animal; 2) Drink milk into adulthood. He said there is a whole movement that is advocating that we shouldn't drink milk at all. It's not good for us overall and causes a lot of problems. It is mucous forming and can cause upper respiratory problems, stuffy noses etc. It is also very hard for a lot of people to digest. The milk industry is just out to make money and milk doesn't necessarily "do a body good". There's all sorts of other information out there if you were really interested in the issue. I personally am not here to write about all that...or am I?
So let's start with Tyler. He was born in Logan, which if any of you have paid attention will know is one of the highest polluted areas in the nation on many days in the winter. He was born in late November and 5 days after he was born he started wheezing. Over the next 11 months he ended up on oxygen twice, had pneumonia once and was almost constantly on a nebulizer (pulmacort and albuteral) to keep the wheezing at bay. At 11 months old he got a little stomach bug and so the doctor put him on soy formula because it was gentler and would help him get over it. Well wouldn't you know it...but his breathing problems disappeared almost immediately. So we went with what worked and kept him on soy formula/milk from then on. It didn't make any sense to me, but it seemed like EVERY TIME we tried to put him back on regular milk he would invariably get an upper respiratory infection and ended up wheezing again. When he was 1 1/2 we moved to Cedar City and his breathing improved even more. We ended up doing 1/2 cow's milk and 1/2 soy milk for a long time because any more than that he would get sick. We finally were able to go 100 % cow's milk for a good 6 months to a year without any problems. He was doing great. Then in January of last year he ended up in the hospital with RSV and strep throat. RSV sounds scary, but if you know anything about it, it's usually only scary for babies. In older children it's usually appears to be a cold. It shouldn't land a 3 year old in the hospital. So we ended up back on soy milk for the next 6 months at least. He's back on regular milk most of the time now. Occasionally he still chooses "special milk" but not usually anymore. And he's been doing fine. He's been sick a few times in recent months and I've just been holding my breath waiting for the wheezing to start. It hasn't. His body seems to be getting stronger I guess. I could never explain the connection to milk, but there always seemed to be one.
Well now we have another problem. And it's actually not new, but I'm just looking at it in a different way. Kelley, Tyler and now Maren have all been projectile vomiters. I have to bring at least three LARGE burp rags everywhere I went in addition to extra clothes for me AND them. People don't usually believe me until it happens to them, but my babies could SOAK themselves and an adult in one fell swoop. Kelley and Tyler just ended up on Zantac for their whole first year to control the "reflux". It controlled it OK...
A few months ago I went to a child care seminar and Dr. Harvey Karp was the keynote speaker. He wrote the Happiest Baby on the Block. He mentioned that he believes reflux is extremely over-diagnosed and over medicated. I talked to him briefly about my babies and my concern we'd end up with the same problem with this one. His theory was that if they don't seem to be in a lot of pain and they are gaining weight fine, skip the medication and just deal with the spit up. So that was the plan.
Sure enough Maren has had the same problems, although not as bad as I remember with the other kids...but it's hard to say because it has been a while and I was expecting the worst. Well I haven't done the medication, but have read some stuff and talked to some people who say that dairy can be a culprit in reflux babies. So this week I did what I thought was impossible and have cut out ALL DAIRY. It has been torture! Do you have any idea what it is like to skip the creamies your hubs and kids are having...to go without chocolate and most baked sweets....to try to eat bagels without cream cheese...to crave cheese enchiladas, but not be able to do anything about it...to never be able to butter your toast with (((((sigh))))) real butter??? I could have never done it for myself, but this is my little tiny baby girl we're talking about here.
Well....UNFORTUNATELY....it seems to be helping. She's only projectile vomited once since I started and that was after I ate waffles made from buttermilk mix. Grrr....So now I'm in a dilemma and I feel like a bad mother for even thinking this way...but now what do I do with this information? Go without all those things for the next year while I nurse her? Go without them most of the time, but splurge occasionally at her expense? At this very moment I have a box full of Valentine's cookies sitting on our counter that I don't dare touch because I bought them, they don't have an ingredient list and they were probably made with butter, sweetened condensed milk, or something. I do have to admit it would probably be a FABULOUS diet program, but it is really worth it? I LIKE my dairy!
There is the possibility that I could add in some dairy...it's just kind of a painful process of trial and error to figure out what and how much will bother her. I could just put her on the Zantac, but the older I get the more I'd rather not do meds if I don't have to. Sure I give my kids medicine when they need it. But if they have a low grade fever for example I don't give them anything for it. I'd rather have their bodies fight off whatever they need to. I also won't ask for antibiotics unless it's a bacteria. I once had a pediatrician offer to give me antibiotics for one of the kids if I wanted it. He told me it was probably viral but I could do antibiotics "just in case". NO! Are you kidding me? Anyone ever heard of "super bugs" and why they evolve? So I don't really want to do Zantac.
Am I just the worst mother in the world???? I really don't want to do formula either, which is probably another option. I think breastfeeding is best if possible. There's the bonding benefits, the nutritional benefits that babies can't get anywhere else, and it's always been really helpful in my loosing the baby weight. Plus it's really convenient and virtually cost free.
Oh and did I mention she's sleeping on a regular basis now at night for 5-7 hours at a time? Could it be because her little tummy isn't bugging the heck out of her? My other kids were terrible sleepers. Kelley was a year old before she slept through the night...I'm talking up 2-3 times usually! So this no milk thing also makes for a much more rested mama....which is a happier mama. Maybe it's not connected, but it's awfully suspicious!
Anyway....what would YOU do? This is one of those things that you almost wish you never asked the question to because the answer is SO not cool! But if people had never decided to start drinking milk in the first place...I wouldn't have this problem right now and wouldn't know what I'm missing!
Oh and just one other thing I wanted to throw out there for discussion. The chiropractor told me that she knew another chiropractor that could eliminate allergies. There is this huge skeptic in me that says....umm...yea right! If that was the case why is everyone doing it? I actually saw an allergist a few years ago that said that allergy shots could cure you of allergies, but it takes like 5 years. But then there's this other part of me that says...what if they really could? Of course the medical field probably would never tell you about it because they would loose a lot business. I'm sure the allergy field is HUGE. Just think about all the commercials you see for Claritan, Zyrtec, etc. And if you do allergy shots it's once a week for like I said 5 years...or more. Imagine how much money they must make off of that. I know I sound like a crazy conspiracy theorist. I'm not saying I really think that is the case...but what if?
Any thoughts on this one friends? PLEASE! I'd love to hear what you have to say.
Tyler is my blessing and my challenge. Today he is a challenge! I will spare you the details...
But he has such a sweet side too. The other night I was grocery shopping and Joe had the kids. Maren was a little fussy and he was trying to clean up or something. Tyler wanted to play video games, but Joey told him he had to take care of the baby and do his other stuff. Tyler offered to hold her so he could do what he needed to do and then play games. Joe tried really hard to get everything done quickly so he could play with Tyler, but the poor kid was so tuckered out he just didn't last. Joey said he was SO sweet with her though, just taking very careful care of her to make sure she was happy.
He is going to be such a charmer too and practices on us every day. He is always telling me: "She's such a beautiful baby...she's such a good girl". Let's hope he stays so sweet and protective of her as she gets older.
So....what happens when Walmart is basically the only staple shopping place in the whole town for children's clothes?
Tyler and his two cousins are best buds...I thought it was really funny when they showed up one morning dressed like this and Tyler had already dressed in his coordinating duds.
Tyler is really funny about clothes lately too. He has to look "really cool" or "really super awesome". In order to get him to wear clothes that look decent I usually have to grab onto some feature he's excited about. Some how he decided his jeans are his "Diego Pants". That always reminds me of when I was a kid. My brother's jeans were always his "dunt ta dunts...." To this day I still think that is so funny and cute :)
Tyler's also got some cargo pants that have to be his "tool pants" in order to get him to wear them. (Joe showed him the tool hook for him play hammer....) Of course anything with trains or camo is easy to get him to wear. His latest thing is being twins with his daycare buds. He has the same shirt as one of the boys and as soon as he shows up in the morning with it on Tyler will go get dressed in his Lion shirt too. He's a funny kid...