Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Canine Gourmet

Jaina is a lot like her momma when it comes to whims. She'll be lounging on the couch and all of a sudden jump up and say, "I am going to go paint!" Then she'll spend the next few hours perfecting a masterpiece.

Well, the other day her masterpiece ended up being dog muffins. She had a desire to bake for Shaggy on a whim one afternoon so I told her she could, as long as she cleaned up.  Jaina promised she would.

She went online and looked up the recipe.

Buster's Homemade Birthday Pupcakes

  • 1/4 c. vegetable oil
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 1 c. shredded carrots
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 c. honey
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup oat flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 c. peanut butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together the oat flour and baking soda, then add in everything else. You can make this into one cake or individual pup cakes. I recommend the pup cakes because even this batch made 11 small pup cakes. That would be one large cake to feed one dog. If you do the pup cakes, use a muffin pan and bake for 15-20 minutes and let cool. If you decide to do the large cake bake it for 30-40 minutes. Just check with a toothpick for crumbles and no liquid in the center.

You can frost these with either more peanut butter, cottage cheese, or fat free cream cheese. Last year I did the fat free cream cheese mixed with 1 Tbsp of honey and put a milk bone on top as decoration. I don’t have any cottage or cream cheese so I think Buster will just have to enjoy a few of these with no frosting. I’m sure he won’t mind. I licked the bowl clean and it was tasty!!! I might have to eat one fresh out of the oven. I’ll let Buster enjoy a few and take the rest to work. I have a lot of dog lovers in my office.

 It drives me INSANE when Shaggy gets under my feet in the kitchen when I'm cooking. So, he is conditioned to stay far and clear from that room when I'm making stuff. But Jaina doesn't have the same rules and Shaggy could sense that the treats were for him.

 Although these are labeled as cupcakes, they really are more like muffins.

Shaggy absolutely loved them. So much, in fact, that he refuses to eat his regular dog food now. He just ate the last muffin this morning, so he will have a rude awakening tomorrow morning when his bowl has regular food in it!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

18 Months

I don't ever think its possible to imagine your children getting more beautiful with age. Its hard to imagine their future self. What they look like, what they'll be doing, what their personality will be like.

Looking at Jocelyn as a toddler sometimes takes my breath away. Her smile, her chin dimple, the way her hair curls at the base of her neck. 

She is so full of personality. She loves to play pretend. She cooks plastic food in bowls and then feeds you a bite. She likes to put lotion on her body and hair bows in her hair and then say, "Pretty!" She will answer a real phone, play phone, or remote control by saying, "Hey!" and then letting loose with a string of toddler babble.

Jocelyn definitely shows preferences to things. She wants to drink out of a certain cup. She wants to wear shoes when she finds them on the floor. She will shake her head "no" when I ask her if she wants yogurt for breakfast. "Eggs?" I'll ask instead. "Okay! EGGS!" she will yell. 

Things she dislikes:
- diaper changes
- nap time
- when the big kids take over the TV with their shows
- Coming back indoors from being outside

Oh... and if you are another toddler that is around for a playdate? Don't take her Monkey away. Bad idea.

I really thought she'd be walking by now. 12 months is typical. 15 months is on the later end of "normal". 18 months has a "delayed" label slapped all over it.

I'm actually less concerned now about her late walking than I was earlier. She is moving through the developmental stages of pre-walking. She is just doing it months later than anyone thought she would.

She stands up with one-handed support just fine now. She can even stand independently for a second or two before she looses confidence. She cruises furniture like a toddler on a mission.

She has even started to pull up on unstable items (like her push toy and the activity table) and take a few steps while pushing them. This is a huge accomplishment that we have been waiting for :)

Despite me having a more relaxed attitude about her late walking, I will still be calling Babynet again for another evaluation. It would really be great if they would pay for some Physical Therapy for her to go along with her orthotics. She qualifies for services according to the PT. She just doesn't qualify for the state to pay for them until she is 18 months and not walking. And at $400 a sesson, we'll take the financial help, please.

Jocelyn's diet has become much more well balanced. She now enjoys many vegetables, fruits, and meals. Spaghetti and mashed potatoes (not together) are her favorites.

She made the transition down to one nap a day with a little fuss, but not too much. She's down to one bottle (at night) that we will be getting rid of sometime this month. 

This is my favorite age/stage in all of childhood. It is filled with fun, discover, wonder, and a little bit of magic. Jocelyn is not disappointing. 

And many thanks to my darling eldest daughter Jaina for being my photography assistant.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Summer Fun: The Zoo

So, I took my little monkeys to the Zoo last week. They are lucky I didn't leave them there :)

You know what animal Jocelyn liked looking at the best? 

The non-captive birds that were flying free in the sky above us. We didn't pay money to see those.

Jayce did pretty well with his anxiety at the zoo.

 My mom actually went with us. Gray has lived in this area for 10 years and hasn't really explored much of the area. Places that require a lot of walking are hard on someone that has a bad back and arthritis. Luckily the zoo is pretty small and easily completed in 30 minutes.

The total highlight of the trip was watching a giraffe drink pee. Oh yes... I did capture a picture. 

And here are some more animals:

The weather here has been like Seattle most days. This day was no exception. We took 3 umbrellas and a rain jacket. It sprinkled on us for most of the zoo and downpoured on us for a solid 10 minutes. Such is the life in South Carolina lately.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


I've kind of fallen off the proverbial Blogging Bandwagon with both posting and reading others' blogs. Free time has been scarce lately. Sleep takes priority. My house is never clean enough, there are never as many hours in the day, and I'm busier with client pictures than my own.

When we are in the depths of our school routine from August until May, I keep thinking, "I will have more time to do x, y, z when school gets out". Now I'm sitting here thinking that I will have more time to blog and clean when kids go back to school. I'm forgetting that we will have Soccer, Tumbling, Piano, baseball, MOPS, and Fall Portrait Sessions for clients. Okay, maybe not "forgetting", but underestimating how much time those all consume.

Jaina is being a "tween" in all senses of the word. She goes from being sweet and helpful to crying and emotional to having major attitude and sense of entitlement. Whew! What a roller coaster ride! I hear through the grapevine that I should not expect to get off this ride anytime soon.

Jayce is having a much better summer than last summer. With that said, though, we've still had some really bad days. His doctor and I felt like maybe his ADHD medication was responsible for his high anxiety. He suggested that we change to a non-stimulant med. It took 4 weeks to get into his system and then we logged his behavior for 2 weeks on it.  Verdict? It didn't do a thing for his ADHD symptoms. But he's gained 2 lbs (after losing 5) and his anxiety is much better!

We are now trying Focalin. Today is Day 1. Jayce has a friend over right now that is causing some anxiety, so its hard to tell how the medicine is effecting him on a typical day. He's having a hard time making decisions, focusing, having trouble with his memory, he's hyper, and bounding around from one activity to another. And he's very agitated. Yet, he's behaved more today and has shown better self-control than he's shown in weeks. Too soon to tell!

Jocelyn is a little stinker pot! She gains new words every few days and doesn't hesitate to use them. She points and grunts when she doesn't know the word. She thinks she needs to get her way 100% of the time and hates the words, "not now", "later", and "no". Want to see big crocodile tears? Just use one of those phases. But boy does her smile beam when she gets to do what she wants! She is so cute and her giggle is infectious. Her new favorite activity is to put hairbows and headbands on her legs. She thinks she looks super pretty with flowers and bows on her knees :)

Lots of pictures to be uploaded later on, but here's one of the girls at the Zoo last week :)

Friday, July 19, 2013

Don't have a cow, man!

I'm not gonna lie....

I love me some Chick-fil-a.

Yes, I know how S. Truett Cathy feels about gay marriage. No, I don't agree with him. Yes, I know how he spends his money, the money I give to Chick-fil-a when I buy a sandwich. That's his prerogative. I honestly don't know how most CEOs spend their profits. I'm trying hard to care, really.

I told my best friend, who is gay, that my husband was boycotting chick-fil-a on her behalf and on the behalf of all that believe in marriage equality. I told her that as soon as another fast food company came close to making such a tasty chicken sandwich, I would be happy to take my business elsewhere. And you know what? She said she still loved me even if I did eat some homophobic chicken :) That's why she's my best friend :)

So the kids and I continued our yearly tradition to dress up like cows and get some free Chick-fil-a on Cow Appreciation Day.

I think we were darn cute :)

Jocelyn was fascinated with the big cow walking around. She kept staring at him and pointing at him and waving.  But when you got her up close to the cow, she wouldn't have anything to do with him! No high fives, no waves, nothing.

Little Miss is big enough to climb up the play gym and go all the way around by herself. She isn't brave enough to try the slide yet and I'm okay with that!

Oh yes... I dressed up, too.

And one blurry family shot....

 Until next year....

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Beach Instagram

So, we've been back home nearly a week. And I still haven't felt like blogging about the beach yet. Let's face it... with three kids that still need to be fed, clothed in clean clothes, and entertained 24/7, there is no such thing as a vacation for mom. I'm just plain tired. And its been go go go go since the moment we stepped in the door.

But, I will get there. It may be in August when school starts back, but I will eventually blog about our 2013 beach trip.

In the mean time, here's what the condo and eating out looked like from my camera phone:

On the 5 hour ride:

Being silly at Habenaro's Mexican Restaurant:

Getting fancy hair:

Coloring like a big girl at The Blue Crab:

Riding around Broadway at the Beach in style:

Planet Hollywood $$$ lunch:

Jaina's Build-a-Bear creation:

Jayce was too tired from Broadway at the Beach to even get in his bed:

Little Miss trying to self-apply sunscreen:

Resigned to riding during Mini Golf:

Shaded baby during 4th parade:

Look what getting up at 6:30 AM will do to you: