Monday, July 20, 2009

A family car night

For some reason the boys (and mostly Reid) have been VERY difficult lately. Reid has been back talking, not listening, etc. Russ and I can barely finish a sentence before he is adding his own two cents about whatever it is. We're giving warning after warning that he better start listening, etc. Well, 'warnings' ran out this weekend! We decided that we were going to have to really crack down for a while before this gets too out of hand. So, on Sunday there was no tv or DS all day and no scooter for the first half of the day. Reid is a HUGE tv fan so we knew this was difficult for him.

Honestly, we ended up having a pretty good day. Did some playing outside in a water slide with the neighbors, turned our sprinklers on, rode our bikes, etc. We made the kids pack it up at 7:00 and head inside for showers as we were going to stick to bedtime.

Once showers were done, instead of watching some cartoons we took the rug with roads on it out of Ryan's bedroom into our living room along with a collection of matchbox cars. We had a lot of fun playing cars, etc. Whatever car I had, the boys ended up wanting and whichever house I said I was living in - Ryan said he was living with me. There was no escaping! Daddy was not too good at sharing the cop car and pulled all of our cars over for silly items too. :) We had a lot of fun and I don't think the boys really missed the tv at all... Hmm... this was supposed to be punishment, right? Actually, we weren't trying to 'punish' them so much as get their behavior back on track - and not being glued to the tv always seems to help that.

In the same sense, we made the decision that DisneyXD is banned from our house - at least for now. I think it's tailored to a much older child, younger teenager and Russ and I neither one like how the kids (Zach and Cody, Zeke and Luther) on some of those shows act, etc. Reid has been copping quite an attitude lately and we think that is some of the influence. I figured out how to use the parental controls on the cable box and blocked that channel. I told Reid this morning and he was a bit bummed but quickly got over it and went to Disney Kids... and The Magic School Bus is much more comforting to me! I don't need an 11/12 year old acting kid any too early!

Here are pics from our "Car" night...

Some great father/son time...

Russ had an orienteering event with our Possom Trot club this past Saturday. It was a "sprint" course (i.e. short) and very close to our house so I took the boys to watch. We walked around and found three of the checkpoints near the end and sat there and watched as people came by, etc. We spotted Russ and got to watch him get the final 3 checkpoints and then head to the finish. We missed him actually finishing as he got there much quicker than we could get back over that way. After the race Russ took Ryan off to find another checkpoint with the map, etc. Reid was pouting (more on that in a later post) because he wanted to find all of the checkpoints and not just one so he stayed behind with me. Ryan seemed to really enjoy holding and looking at the map and walking around with dad.

On Sunday, Russ took Reid to a drop-in Stick and Puck session at an ice rink in almost FULL GEAR! The local Play it Again Sports had their hockey sale on Saturday and we got some great deals on more of Reid's equipment that he'll need if he actually joins a team and plays hockey. Reid was pretty excited about the new equipment. Once Russ and Reid got all of their gear on they skated around one end of the rink and each took some shots at the other. Reid was having a really good time with it but tuckered out pretty early. He probably got a good 20 - 25 minutes of playing and skating in but that about wore him out. I'm not sure he could last the full hour in all that equipment without some more practice or training (we're putting together a rough training schedule - JOKE). He said that it hurt his legs and he started deciding he needed lots of water breaks :) so we called it a day and headed home.

Ryan and I were just hanging out around the rink while Russ and Reid were playing so one of the employees let him sit on the zamboni. He loves watching the zamboni clean the ice but he wasn't too sure about driving it - the nilla wafers he was eating were distracting him ;)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Another bump in the road...

Ok, so the name of this movie might give a clue into how I'm feeling these days. We're guessing that this little boy (#3) is either going to be one tough cookie (Chris) or one needy little boy (Vern) that wants lots of attention :) And I'm not sure which would be better. We recieved my blood test results back yesterday and I am in fact carrying the human parvovirus B19 (Fifth Disease). The boys have had 5th disease over the last couple of weeks and when I told my dr he wasn't very excited about it. He sent me to the lab that night (last Thursday). We were hoping that I had it as a kid because if you have there is a greater than 50% chance that you carry an immunity to it. NO SUCH LUCK! The blood work shows that I have the virus at this time. Basically this puts the baby at risk for anemia (or fetal hydrops). Russ and I will go tomorrow for another ultrasound with the specialist at Midwest Perinatal - the same group we've been seeing for the other "issues." Through this ultrasound and most likely weekly ultrasounds for a while, they will monitor the baby's cerebral artery for any signs of anemia. If that occurs then we could be looking at needing an intrauterine blood transfusion or having this little guy early. Chances are slim so we're playing the odds again. (I'm thinking a trip to Vegas next year should be what we do!) The link above has the best information and seems to be exactly what the doctor said last night when he called to check in on us and see if we had any questions (previous conversations yesterday were only with his nurse).

Stay tuned for more McDowell drama... I mean ummm... news ;)

Monday, July 13, 2009

100 day countdown!

Well, we finally told the boys on Saturday that they were going to be big brothers! They took a few minutes to understand what we were telling them but once they warmed up and understood they got pretty excited. According to our weekly progress e-mails we have somewhere between 105 and 112 days to go in the pregnancy but we just told the boys that it would be in 100 days for simplicity sake. We sat in the nursery that has been emptied out and painted and told them that it was the baby's room. We talked a bit about names. Reid wanted to name him Meatball Noodle McDowell and Ryan eventually settled on the name Notre Dame. I'm guessing mom and dad will keep control of the name!

Both boys lifted my shirt and talked to my belly and played around a bit. It was about time we tell them that their little brother was in there as some days I feel more like a trampoline than a mom :) Now at least we can tell them why they need to calm down and be more careful on me - not that I'm just lazy and getting fat for no reason :) We hauled the new nursery bedding upstairs and Ryan had some fun laying around on it and "breaking it in" for #3. Both have had glimpses of being excited and not caring a whole lot but we've got lots of days ahead to build the excitement.

The boys will take a sibling preparation class (Big Brother class we'll call it) on October 10th where they will learn how to act around a baby, etc. Hopefully around that time we'll get them real excited to be the great big brothers that we know they will be.

For now we're just focusing on enjoying the few short weeks of summer that we have left, discussing getting ready for school for Reid, transition back to daycare for Ryan, fall sports for Reid (soccer and a hockey team), and whatever family fun we can build in the remaining 4 weeks of summer.

** Next major McDowell news - Russ will be competing in the Dusk 2 Dawn 12 hour adventure race on 7/25 and 7/26. He's been working hard to get in shape and we're super excited to see how it goes for him.

A great vacation!

We returned home mid-week last week from a fabulous vacation. We had a couple of days at home beforehand and a day at home after as well. It was very relaxing and a lot of fun. We went to Mark Twain Landing - the same resort that we stayed at last year for the Fourth of July. We had so much fun last year that my family decided to join us this year. My mother gave our family (and my three sister's) three nights stay at the cabins for Christmas in 2008. Russ and I added on a night and we spent four nights in the cabins (that's the way I do camping - full bathrooms, air conditioning, cable TV). The resort has so many activities for the kids (including a good size water park with hardly any lines) and it's just a great family time. We've already began discussions on going back next year.

The vacation was twice as nice for us as we are only 16 miles from Russ' parents as well. His brother came down from St Louis so the boys had both sides of their extended family together for several days. We had a 3rd birthday party for Ryan at their house one night and then a large cookout and fireworks with both sides of the family the next night. It was really special for us. We didn't spend a ton of money or pack in much sight-seeing but we really just enjoyed hanging out, being together, sitting by the bonfire, etc.

We had rented golf carts to get around the resort and they proved to be a lot of fun for everyone as well. I could just go on and on with all of the fun that we had but I'll just add all the great pictures that we got instead!