Saturday, June 29, 2013

1 week left (or so)

I am now at the 39-week mark. Hurray! This is the time of the pregnancy where it's hard to sleep, and I just want to lay around all the time. Which is pretty much what I'm doing when I'm not working on some last-minute project like this or that.
Casen (sorry, L Child, again middle child doesn't have as many pictures)

Button can now flex her muscles according to the pregnancy websites. I'll have to tell the boys that she is getting ready to play superheroes with them.

I'm having pretty regular false labor pains now, too. I guess I'll see if they turn into something on their own this time without the use of pitocin.

Book Recommendation

I borrowed several books from my friend Pam this past year. As usual, I liked all the books since we usually have the same taste in books. I've been meaning to blog about one of the books for several months. Since I'm down to the last week or so before Button arrives, I thought I would recommend the book finally: Nurtureshock. It has been out a few years (2009) but still relevant.

The book discusses how there's a lot of beliefs by parents out there that aren't supported by the research. Topics include praise, sleep, race, lying, gifted children, sibling rivalry, teen rebellion, self-control, getting along with others, and early talkers. Even though not all of the topics were subjects of concern for me, there were a few that really struck a chord with me. 
I especially liked the ones about sleep and race. It discussed how children are getting an hour less of sleep than they did thirty years ago. This loss of sleep is tied to loss of IQ points, emotional well-being, ADHD, and obesity. I think I found this chapter interesting because I know that when the boys don't get enough sleep, life is not fun. Reading this chapter confirmed my own suspicions. 
The other topic about race stuck out to me because I was doing what the research suggests NOT to do. The title of the chapter is called, "Why White Parents Don't Talk About Race." The chapter discusses how many times, white parents do not talk about race with their children because they believe that pointing it out will create racism and stereotypes. The result? We (including I, a white parent) ignore it. We shush our kids when they point it out. Research shows though that children not only notice race and skin color, they begin to form ideas about it at an early age. At the same time I was reading this chapter, I realized both boys would use skin color to describe someone. We attend a racially-diverse church. C was pointing out skin color and different hair types regularly when he would talk about his new school friends; his school is about 50% black and 50% white. Reading this book calmed down my paranoia that my kids were being inappropriate. Instead of ignoring race and skin color, we should use the observations our kids are making to discuss equality and discourage stereotypes. As a result, C and I have had some good conversations; hopefully, good conversations that will help mold him into a good man one day. 
I highly recommend all people who work with children or have children to read this book.

Friday, June 28, 2013

A Year and a Half Later

Projects around our house usually take longer than originally planned. Decorating my bedroom started two birthdays ago. With my nesting instinct on full gear, I just had to get my room done (especially after the boys and I got my room super clean). Here is the finished product:

Made the canvases thanks for Pinterest ideas and Mom and Dad's help. I left space to add more pictures after Miss Button arrives.

I want to make another canvas with a saying about having a little girl. I haven't picked a quote yet.

I want to add a picture of Josh holding all three kids under this canvas.

The little flowers were a gift I think for my anniversary. Dad put them up for me. Good eye! Dad made me the necklace holder for my birthday. I made the flower petal canvas to the left. I'm making something similar for Button's room too.

After all these crafts I did, I'll be good for another year and a half.

Monday, June 24, 2013

How to Make a Volcano

To prove that I really am a scientist, C and I had to make a volcano together. C was disappointed when I told him we were making it at home; he wanted to do it at my work (aka the labs). Next science project will have to be in a real lab then. L Child and Daddy went for a drive while C and I got started.

Step 1: Gather all your materials. Including one excited little boy.

Step 2: Have a brief overview about volcanoes complete with an Earth Science textbook and a piece of scoria.

Step 3: After cutting a vent (a hole) in a plastic cup, cover the cup with clay. (A big shout out to my friend Taylor who suggested the easy plastic cup covered with clay idea!)

Step 4: Add red food coloring to vinegar.

Step 5: Put baking soda on the plate in a pile.

Step 6: Place the colorful volcano on top of the baking soda. Anticipate the explosion.

Step 7: Pour vinegar through the vent onto the baking soda.

Step 8: Enjoy the show!

Step 9: Make a different type of "lava." Add corn starch to the cup.

Step 10: Add a little water to the cornstarch as well as red food coloring. Stir it up well (an adult will probably will be needed to stir).

Step 11: Pour this viscous lava on and around the volcano. This homemade "lava" is neat because it seems to go back and forth between a solid and a liquid.
While we waited for Daddy and L Child to return home, we watched some volcanic eruptions videos on the Internet as well as went to a cool website to make different types of volcanoes and have them explode on screen. 
L Child arrived back home and got to make both types of lava as well. He was a bit wary at first but enjoyed the show.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Button is the Size of a Watermelon...

....and it feels like it.

Trying out the new glider covers Mom made. I'll post pics of her room as soon as it's finished (probably this next week).


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Summer Fun

I'm home full-time now for the summer so the fun activities begin! Here's what we've been doing so far...

The boys figured out what the trick bars are for on their bikes. This means that they take turns giving each other rides.

  The boys started swim lessons. I had been putting it off due to time and how expensive they are, but I'm so glad we finally did it this summer. Both the boys are less scared in the water and are learning how to get around in the water without clinging onto someone for dear life. I found 2 excellent swim teachers that give them just what they need - patience but encouragement. That one picture of Liam sitting next to his teacher is what he did for the first few days. He just sat on the edge of the pool with his feet in the water, preferably talking to his teacher. That boy sure does like to talk to girls already.

Two weekends in a row, the boys went with family out of town. Josh and I went on a movie binge. I think we've seen about four movies in a week. We are preparing for Button's arrival where going to the movies will be a little more difficult.

The boys built a tornado shelter complete with Rocky Hocky on top as the siren.

We've played lots of games - here's the start of Fibber.

Both boys, especially L Child, find their way into Button's room a lot. They play with her toys or just look around. It's sweet to find them in there. It's like they are anticipating her arrival - just like me!

If not swimming, it's splash park time.

  Redhawks baseball has started so we went to our first game. Thanks to Josh, and not me, C is beginning to understand the game. After a strike, he turned to me last night and said, 'That was a strike, Mama." L Child is learning Josh's favorite game, too.

We got started on L Child's sleeve.

Father's Day!

37 weeks

37 weeks with C
37 weeks with Button
Button is full-term technically now (most crucial functions are developed), but I probably have a few more weeks at least. I'm pretty sure Button is lower than the boys were at this stage (well, the way I'm carrying her). I had a check-up, and nothing is really happening yet. About the same as it was with the boys at this stage. Josh and the boys got to come to my appointment and see her on the ultrasound. Liam seemed confused: he kept looking between the screen of Button and my tummy. C was ultra-excited. He exclaimed, "Is that her moving?!?" when he saw her legs moving around. My doctor won't estimate her weight. She says that it usually freaks women out since the ultrasound can be off by so much. Instead I'm wondering if she'll be bigger or smaller than the boys (C was over 9 lbs and L Child was over 8 lbs). I'm guessing she might be in-between their birth weights. The websites say that Button is between 6-9 lbs right now. Quite the range at this point. I guess we will soon find out how big she is. I will say that in the ultrasound, her little face looked chubby like the boys' did at birth. I can't wait to see her!
My nesting instinct seems to kick in around 1 PM everyday - if I've lazed around all morning. Josh and I got the boys' room cleaned and done yesterday. One more thing I can check off my mental list of things to do before Button arrives.

Skipped a Couple of Generations

One of my gender-uncharacteristic confessions (I have a few) is that I don't really like shopping. Even when I have money to spend on myself, shopping wears me out! I wish I could have a personal shopper for everything - clothes, food, furniture, and yes, even a car (we recently got a new car - it was a long day!).
My mom is the same way. Oh we'll do the Black Friday shopping every once in awhile. Usually though I think we both end up thinking, "Um, not worth it."
The rest of my mom's family seems to love shopping. They take day excursions to get it done. The first time I experienced Black Friday was my freshman year in college when I went to visit family in Kansas over Thanksgiving. I didn't know people got up that early to shop.
Somehow, the shopping gene skipped my mom and I, but it fell to the boys. They love to just simply look at things at a store. It's a sad day for them when I tell them that we can't spend half an hour looking at toys. This Mama is tired! They are completely content to take an hour looking at things they like and then spending another hour with me grocery shopping. Wowzers!

This is a picture from last week at Target. We just ran in quickly to get a few things, and we passed the boys' comforters section. They both paused and looked at each one and talked about which ones they liked and disliked. 

I instead caught up on my texting and went over my short grocery list.
Maybe they get it from Josh's side of the family, too. Josh is usually are designated Black Friday shopper in our family!