Saturday, October 24, 2009

Go Ducks!!

Duck Game Day!!
Is this how I hold him?
Chillin' in Mommy's room
The Real Duck Fan
Duck by Marriage Fan
Happy boys!

Family note:
Construction has finally begun on our addition (10 months of planning and waiting for our approval from the county)! The first day we watched an excavator dig up our side yard. The second day our front porch disappeared! We can no longer use our front door so it looks like we'll be moving up our move out date since using the back door in the Oregon rain is miserable! Pics soon!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Our boy is smiling! And it's a cutie!! Very wide, open mouth grin! Often only one side of his mouth which makes him even cuter. Like a sideways smile. Hard to get on camera just yet.

Darn picture came in sideways so turn your head to the right please!

And the best money ever spent, $1 at the Dollar Store. Okay $6 to be fair but the best $6 I ever spent! Light up, noise making swords, robot arms, knight shield and robot chest protector!
Uncle Ga taught Carson how to "die" a realistic death . . . only our drama king has taken it to new heights! The videos are really dark because the lights are off to feel the full effects of the swords so squint your eyes and enjoy.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

PowerRanger and bro

Carson is a drama-king and what better way to express your creativity than costumes! I am a sucker and brought home another one. This one even has MUSCLES!!

This is how Carson looked when he left for school today. Notice the camo rainboots.

The funny part... he doesn't even really know anything about PowerRangers other than the older boys at school talk about them. He's never seen the show nor read any books about them. Hilarious.

Sweet Keaton survived his 2 month appointment with 3 yucky shots. I waffled for many weeks as to the traditional vaccine schedule or the alternative and ended up going with the traditional. He didn't love me for it!

Keaton Stats:

10 lbs 10oz, 25th percentile

22.5 inches (I think), 34th percentile.

Growing well at 1/2 pound a week but still about 4 pounds smaller than Carson was. We love our small little buddy. It is kind of nice because he stays in clothes longer than Carson did. Looks like we have just a few more weeks in 0-3 months and then I get to open up the 3-6 month bin.

To be honest, I've already opened it at least 4 times adding new clothes to it. I have a shopping problem!!


"Mommy STOP! Do you hear that smell?"

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The End of Single Parenthood!

Well, I made it! 7.5 days of single motherhood come to an end at 1:30 am tonight (but who's counting??).

With the exception of the Monday from hell, the rest of the time was pretty uneventful. Today was pretty awful with the unexpected cancellation of a babysitter and having to drag both boys with me to show a house.

An uber crabby and uncooperative Carson made the day drag and me feel like a mean mom for taking away Krispy Kreme doughnuts, a Spiderman Costume, and story before naptime. But as consistency is the key and caving will only make it harder next time.

In a strange twist of events, while doing laundry tonight, I found my missing house key (see Monday's post) in the washing machine of all places!!

Some pics and videos from the past week plus a few random ones.

My boys!
Random zoo pic. Very cool exhibit where it looks like the Range Rover has crashed into the wild dog enclosure!
Sweet boy 2 months old now!
He's definitely a Rader!
Sideways smiles!
Oops. Forgot to turn the photo
Grandpa & Grandma Levy's visit with their new grandson!

Buzz Lightyear and Baby Keaton
Buzz Lightyear and his Bumbo Helmet
Super cute blondie!

More cutie pie!

And finally, a super cute vid of what Mommy and Carson did to pass the time while Daddy was away... Thank You Dollar Store!!

Here Carson is "teaching" his brother to smile. If you watch closely, Keaton is smiling each time Carson tells him too. Lucky coincidence!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Single Mom Days 4 & 5- Celebration!

Thursday, again, very uneventful and easy. Happy to know that I have things totally under control.

But now also bored and ready for Jeremy to come home. I'm actually picking up the house before I go to bed which NEVER happens unless forced to at gunpoint.

Friday's are "Mommy & Me" days. I keep Carson home from school and we get to hang out. This morning, he wore his Superman costume and mask to Baby Boot Camp. Only now it has a "C" instead of an S.

Everyone always comments on him but the cutest of all was a little boy about 1.5-2 years old stopped dead in his tracks when he saw Carson ride by in his stroller. The little boy's jaw hit the floor and he said in complete awe, "Batman!"

Later in the day, Carson switched to his NASCAR race car driver costume. We love it because it has flames. Daddy thinks it's hilarious because one of Carson's sponsors "Nicorette". Oh yes, Nicorette.

Lots of people stop and tell Carson how cool he looks. But today an older woman stops, looks at Carson and says, "Wow! You look awesome! Jeff Gordon is my favorite!".

I stifled a laugh because clearly this woman knows her NASCAR. Jeff Gordon's name is NO where on the costume. But his number, his sponsors and his flames are no laughing matter to the REAL fans!

Finally, today was a HUGE day in the Rader household because our Land Use Decision finally got officially approved and recorded!! The adventure that began TEN months ago when we first met with our builder can now truly begin!

On Monday our builder can finally apply for our building permits and we hope to start construction/excavation within a week or two!

That does also mean it's getting very close to moving day. Our kind and generous neighbors offered to let us live with them during our 6 month remodel/addition. Thanks Mom and Dad! See ya soon! Pizza and Movie night is every Friday :-)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Day 3- Piece of Cake

Completely and totally uneventful day and night! Simply fantastic!

We do miss Daddy but are holding down the fort.

Both boys got baths yesterday AND I cleaned the house!

Keaton got up at 2am and 5am but ate quickly and fell right back asleep both times. Carson slept in until 7 am so I'm feeling great today!

Bring on the next 4 days! Halfway there!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Day 2- After You Clean Up the Barf

Hindsight is 20-20. I realize now that Monday night I set myself up for failure.

Should I have skipped Carson's swim class at 7 pm? Probably.

Would I have spanked Carson if I hadn't been uber-stressed trying to get everyone fed, dressed, and back in the car for the 30 minute drive to swim class? Probably not.

Should I have scheduled my client conference call for 9 pm instead of 8:30? Most definitely.

Could I have asked my sister to come over for 30 minutes to hold Keaton during the conference call? Of course.

Did I do any of that? No.

Mine own fault.

Today was a breeze! The morning sailed by without incident. I picked up Carson from school and we had a blast playing swords, eating "Bawk-Mac-Dog" (which is an awesome concoction of Scrambled Egg, Mac n Cheese, & chopped up hot Dog), and then leisurely read two stories before bed. And Keaton slept blissfully the entire time.

Piece of cake.

But then the adventure really started five minutes before my bedtime. Just as I was shutting my laptop, I looked up to see a giant mouse scamper across my kitchen floor!!! EW!!

9:30 pm. Night is dark, windy, and chilly. Husband (mouse-slayer of choice) is out of town. Traps are all down in the barn. Plan A not going to work.

Plan B: Let fat lazy cats spend the night in the house and hope and pray that they catch the darn thing.

Only this plan was flawed.

First, I laid in bed wondering if one or both of them would jump into the crib, cozy up to Keaton, and then suffocate him accidentally.

Second, about once every 30 minutes I would wake up to MEEEEOOW. Alfie was wandering around looking for a little love instead of grey, furry, prey.

Third, I jumped out of bed due to a loud raucous in the family room. Coned dog was crashing into everything. Ran out in the hall. Heard a tiny squeak and saw a cat run past me, directly into my bedroom.

Then I had to search every nook and cranny of my room with a flashlight to find the poor injured creature. Nothing.

Keaton had a rough night due to backed up bowels so every time I got up, I worried that I was going to step on a small grey body.

Morning finally arrived. Mouse poop all over the kitchen and two cats cozied up on the couch. Damn it.

Carson came out in the meantime and instantly wanted to play. I was so worried about how to explain death to him in case we find the body. Here is our hilarious conversation.

C: Can we have our sword fight now.
M: No because my sword is in my room and we can’t go in there because the kitties are chasing a mouse.
C: Oh. Are they eating the mouse?
M: Yes.
C: Well they barf after they eat the mouse.
M: Yes (trying really hard not to laugh)
C: And you have to clean up the barf.
M: Yes (actually that’s your daddy’s job)
C: Okay. Then let’s play sword’s after you clean up the barf.

Ate breakfast, added mouse traps to my shopping list, and then heard it . . . SQUEAK.

There was the little creature, laying on my bedroom floor, with a cat watching him. Knowing that sometimes the kitties are more interested in playing than killing, I ran into the kitchen to get a tupperware to scoop up the victim and dispose of him.

And then he was gone. Damn it again.

Under my bed!! It took 15 minutes, a flashlight, foam sword from the Dollar Store, a sour cream container, and a Playboy magazine but I finally got the little bugger. Clearly he was injured because he couldn't run very fast.

Let's hope the rest of Day 3 is even more uneventful!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Day 1 of Single Motherhood

Yes, Jeremy is out of town with his dad. And in an unfortunate coincidence, my parents are on their annual coastal vacation week.

30 hours in and I've already cried 2 tears.

8 days of single motherhood with a bi-polar 3 year old and an 8 week old that has suddenly woken up and loves to be awake! And working full time to boot!

The first evening was quite easy. Too easy.

The first morning went off without a hitch. We even got out the door 1/2 hour earlier than usual.

Then Monday upon picking Carson up from school, things started to fall apart.

Keaton was screaming hungry by the time we rolled into the driveway. Carson was whining and the dog was banging his coned head against the front window.

Sherpa-style, I hauled in the six large bags that seem to follow me everywhere, dumped them in front of the door and got out my keys.

Only to find my house key was gone. Fallen off somewhere between locking the door at 8 am that morning and now. Holy $*&%!!

Thank GOD the last person to use our hide-a-key put it back!

Got in the house, kicked bags aside, took dog's cone off (trying to heal his three sores that are a result of being neglected and bored). Dog proceeds to knock scab off his nose and is bleeding all over everything.

Mental break-down oncoming.

Hold Keaton my left arm, keep his bottle in his mouth with my chin, and make mac n cheese with my right hand. Me starving.

Carson, not following directions and goofing around, knocks over his un-lidded "big boy" cup of milk. Pouring off the table onto bleeding dog's nose who is trying to lap it up as fast as it falls.

I grab Carson to put him in time-out for messing around and he turns around and hits me.

I lose it. I am sad to say. I am embarrassed that my emotion got the better of me. I spanked him. First time, not sure if it will be the last time but hopefully not again in reaction to a situation.

Carson screaming in time-out. Keaton fussing. And now it's time to leave for swim class.

Dress screaming Carson in swim gear. Pack bags up in car again. Cone bleeding dog.

Swim class was actually very fun! Carson is doing amazingly and it is so fun to watch him. This time I actually got to sit by the pool since Daddy is on "Cation" (vacation).

But then it falls apart again. Trying to shower Carson and for some reason Keaton is starving and crying.

Have you ever tried to pull up a pull-up on a wet kid? Or jammies? Even a non-stressed parent could lose it!

Watching the clock, my stress level is reaching epic proportions because I have to get on a conference call with clients at 8:30 pm. It's now 7:45, Keaton needs a bottle, and Carson is running around a locker room.

Make it home at 8:20. Still have to get Carson pottied, teeth brushed, nose emptied of boogers, and read him two stories. Oh, and Keaton is eating AGAIN.

The usual bedtime stalling tactics are somewhat trying and funny on a normal night. Tonight, I have ZERO patience for them. Poor Carson keeps staring at me like I'm a monster. Probably because I was.

Make it to my conference call at 8:40. Late and embarrassed, holding Keaton who is still eating, and PRAYING Carson doesn't come out of his room (he usually comes out twice with stalling excuses). I threatened him that if he came out, I would NOT be buying him new markers.

Fortunately he didn't come out but Keaton was wide awake and not interested in sitting by himself. I switched off between stuffing the pacifier in his face and then bottle. At one point he barfed all over the bouncy chair while in my arms so that was no longer an option.

The infant noises that would normally be cute and adorable when talking on the phone with a Grandma or other mother were just awkward and frustrating. A baby cooing into the phone to my clients who are childless by choice was final straw.

And that's when I shed my two tears. Looking into Keaton's eyes when I hung up the phone, feeling like a failure as a mother for trying to keep my baby quiet, feeling like a lousy excuse for a Realtor for my lack of professionalism on the phone.

Six days to go.

Stay tuned. I may be blogging from the funny farm soon.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Pumpkin Patch Pics!

A beautiful clear day, all of 44 degrees, at Plumper Pumpkin Patch. BRRRRRR!!! We were freezing!! But it was very fun, as this year, we actually paid the $3/person to go into the activity area instead of being cheap and just watching over the fence.

Carson had a blast on the 40 ft drainage pipe slide! We saw a giant pot-bellied-pig that we're pretty sure didn't have any eyes. Gross.

Keaton slept through the whole thing.

And a few cute pics of our peaceful Keaton. Adorable!!

Just a little milk leak while napping.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Video Blogging

No new pics so here are some recent videos taken with our new Vado video camera! As always turn up your sound.

Trip to the zoo when Keaton was a week old. The cougar took a liking to Carson, he tried to eat him!

Keaton's 2nd bath was a family affair!

Horrible Event of the Week!

Carson's making huge progress in his swimming class! Three fun clips!

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Pics Please

Keaton weighed in at 9 lbs 7 oz yesterday (6 weeks 3 days old). It's very interesting to have two children on opposite ends of the spectrum. Keaton is in the 25th percentile. At this age, Carson weighed nearly 13 pounds and was in the 95th percentile. The competitive side of me can't help but worry and wonder about Keaton's growth but I'm sure the doc will just tell me to relax.

Keaton is a Type B kid in a Type A family. He is so chill and low key. He only cries when he's hungry and even then if you whisper in his ear, he instantly calms down. He sleeps almost all day long.

We've had some rough nights lately. Last night for example.

We were very excited because the night before we'd reverted to swaddling Keaton on his back and he only woke up once. But two nights in a row is not possible. Last night for Pizza and Movie night, we broke our rule and Carson watched a PG instead of a G movie. Once again, it backfired. PG for "crude humor" is great. PG for "scary battles" means the same thing every time. Carson wakes up screaming from nightmares.

Don't laugh but last night the "True Story of Buzz Lightyear" - a horrible knock-off of the classic, Toy Story- woke Carson up three times screaming "MAKE THEM GO AWAY!!!". The robot vs astronaut battles were just too much.

So after Carson had been up three times in three hours (which requires us to pat his back until the monsters subside) then Keaton woke up. He ate around 3ish and then decided not to go back to sleep for 1.5 hours. It was torture. We took turns rocking him, praying for a miracle.

And for the long awaited pics!!

This one cracks me up!
Practicing his neck skills but hating it.
This is Keatons' BFF Colton. They were born 3 weeks apart.

Those little legs are so cute!

Red-faced, Traumatic Shopping Day

I again apologize for the lack of pictures. Work has not slowed down at all and we are still awful about taking as many pictures of Little Buddy.

By the time we get home from work, cook dinner, feed Keaton, play, bathe Carson (Keaton has still only had 2 baths, yes, 2, no comments please), and get him to bed, we are EXHAUSTED.

I have a stack of thank you notes to write and am quite positive that several people are missing from the list.

The house looks like a bomb went off. I can't keep up with it. Poor Jeremy gets a nervous tic when he walks in the door and has to play hopscotch to get down the hallway amidst all the toys, clothes, and bags.

But I digress. I logged in to tell you about my terribly traumatic shopping events.


I am a Craig's List (CL) junkie. It stems from the garage sale hunter gene I inherited from my mother. CL is ten times better because instead of spending all day Saturday driving from culdesac to culdesac and combing through someone else's treasures/junk, you simply shop from the comfort of your couch.

It's the same thrill of the hunt. Logging in, typing in your key search word and waiting breathlessly to find new postings. The really hot items go within minutes of listing and you have to be diligent about checking.

My latest hunt was for my sixth, YES SIXTH stroller. Not only am I addicted to CL, I have an unhealthy love of strollers. Each one has a purpose. Thank goodness we have a HUGE laundry room to house all of them.

One time I scoffed at the woman buying the $850 BugaBoo stroller at Segals, "Who would spend that much money on a stroller!?!"

Jeremy couldn't contain his disgust as he looked at me and rattled off how much I've spent on my embarrassing collection:

BOB Ironman Single $350 + $150 in accessories
BOB Revolution Double $550 + $150 in accessories
Maclaren Quest $180 (which just replaced my Peg Perego Aria)
Snap N Go Single $25 (used)
Umbrella Stroller $15

And then there is my latest addition. It popped up after many weeks of CL stalking. $150 for a used Joovy Caboose Ultralight. For the unfamiliar, this is a "sit and stand" stroller. Put the carseat or baby up front and the toddler can stand or sit on a platform in the back. AWESOME for an infant and 3 year old.

Only I couldn't be happy with the regular version with resells for $75-90. No, I had to have the Ultralight. Why? In hindsight, for dumb reasons.

But in the heat of the shopping moment, it is lighter by 5 pounds, has a neat drink/key holder, and ball-bearing wheels. Worth $150? I thought so.

So I dialed the number with lightening quick speed, arranged a "driveway" pick up in light of the recent CL murders, and flew down to West Linn. Which, by the way, is a LONG way from our house. A good hour drive. For a used stroller.

Got it home. Happy as a clam. Husband tolerating my addiction pretty well. I justified it by its excellent resale value and amazing uses and really cool accessories . . .

Wait a minute. Three days later I realized that I didn't get the accessories. My stomach did a little flip-flop. I got jilted. This lowers the value of my purchase. I jumped online and found the ad, which by some miracle was still posted.

Called the guy and explained that he must have forgotten to give me the accessories that day. He has NO idea what I'm talking about and says, "I dunno. I just copied and pasted the description from the Internet. We don't have any of those things you're talking about."

This should have been my first clue. You know that feeling when the butterflies start fluttering with increased urgency.

The little voice in my head said, "Kristin, find the model # on the stroller and double-check it. Because no where on the stroller does it say Ultralight."

But the days flew by and I didn't get around to it. Then yesterday I used the stroller for the second time. It seemed pretty heavy loading and unloading it. Red flag #2.

I happened to notice the model # as it was upside down on the ground. And fate intervened.

With great anticipation, I typed in 4-1-9 and hit search. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

I had been duped. This was the regular old heavy, no fun accessories Joovy.

Resale value: $75-90.

I paid $150.

I freaked out. I couldn't fess up to Jeremy. The ad was no longer on CL. Too old.

OMG. I scanned my calendar to figure out which day I had been duped.

I found my old phone, which had one tiny minute of battery left on it and began calling all of the numbers from that day.

I got lucky. First number, "Hello?"

Me: Um yes, did you sell a stroller on Craig's List last week?"

Woman: Yes....

Me: Oh my gosh! This is so embarrassing but you sold me the wrong stroller!!

I nervously explained the situation and she was so sweet! Said bring back the stroller and I'll give you your money back.

But then I was torn. Did I really want to drive 2 hours roundtrip to get my $150 back, then wait online for the next one to post and hope that it was a good deal close by?

Or, after using this "regular" stroller several times, was it just fine to ask her to refund me the money for the cost of that model. Was I being ridiculous "needing" the best of the best? For a stroller that will probably get used twice a month.

My face was so many shades of purple now. Poor woman, I told her I'd call her back in an hour with my decision. Called several of my more rational friends and came to my decision.

In the end, I spent $80 on a lovely, lightly used, black Joovy Caboose without all the bells and whistles.

Moral of the story . . . sometimes the thrill of the hunt outweighs the necessity of the item.

AND life lesson #429 . . . know your model numbers and DOUBLE-CHECK them!!!


Yesterday I had to drag Carson and Keaton to show a house with me, an hour away. They did great. Then we drove back to town and visited new baby Aiden at St. Vincents. Carson was starting to break down.

I should have gone directly home at that point. But no.

Friday nights are pizza and movie night at our house. So we still had to stop by Blockbuster and Papa Murphys. BTW, "running in" to grab a to-go pizza with a 3 year old and infant carseat . . . not so easy.

I should have gone home immediately at that point. But no.

Gymboree Gymbucks were burning a hole in my pocket and I just couldn't let all those other mommies take the good sizes!! I dragged a low blood sugar, juice filled Carson and hungry Keaton to the mall.


Gymbucks are a science. You have to spend just the right amount to save. Plus I had an exchange so my math brain was working overtime. I too, had low blood sugar.

Then I ran into two friends. The clock was ticking WAY past naptime but Carson was sitting in a little chair with all the other kids watching TV so I pushed it even longer.

Then Carson comes running up. Stares at me doing a little dance. Looks a lot like his pee pee dance, which is easily confused with his happy dance.

Do you have to go potty? NO!

Then he ran off.

Then he ran up to me again.

Do you have to go potty? Yes!

I turned, put down the shirt I was holding, and as I was turning back around, I heard,

"Uh oh Mommy. Look."

And there it was. Pee all over the hardwood floor of Gymboree. Soaked jeans. Sopping wet shoes and socks.

I wanted to just melt into the racks of clothes. I had to ask the sales girls for a paper towel like I was cleaning up after a dog at Petsmart.

I was so flustered that I just got in line to check out. Never mind the fact that my math was off and I didn't get my Gymbucks refund right. The girl asks me if I want to keep shopping to fix it and I just stare cross eyed at her. Keaton is crying. And now Carson is sitting in the kid chairs again watching TV, smearing pee all over the seat.

That is the last time I ever choose shopping over naptime. Ever.

How Old is Carson?

How Old is Keaton?