Monday, December 29, 2008

Prayer Request...

A quick note to pray for little MckMuffin. You can find out what's going on here at my charming kids. THANKS!!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

A Thousand Word Thursday - Christmas

The kids are entertained with Legos and Princess Dresses - I am stealing 5 minutes for myself. Amongst the piles of shredded wrapping paper I found my computer.

Cheaper Than Therapy

Merry Christmas to you all! Today we celebrate the birth of our Lord and all the love He gave us. In the spirit of the holiday, I wanted to share this photo, it kind of brings tears to my eyes because it's so darn cute. Here's the background. We spent Christmas Eve at my SIL's home. Her 3 kids are in their beginning teens and when she suggested they all sit together and she could read "Twas the night before Christmas" they laughed. Auntie T finally got her chance when our family and my other SIL's family came with our much younger brood. Auntie T was tickled to read to SOMEONE who would appreciate a good book. They all sat and listened and loved it!

If you would like to see more photos worth a Thousand Words, visit Cheaper Than Therapy.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Not Me Monday - #1

Not Me, Not Me - I would never....well maybe. See what else others didn't do at my charming kids!

I DID NOT join Twitter this weekend to further chain myself to the internet. I mean, I have friends other than e-friends, right?

I DID NOT get to spend several hours with the in-laws, and get a few B-day gifts!

I DID NOT surf the Best Buy parking lot on Sunday before thinking I could wait to get Pink's new album (I DID NOT just call it an album - old much?). WAAAYY too many last minute shoppers to haul four kids into the store for one purchase. And I DID NOT just contemplate herding four kids into Best Buy in -20 degree weather to buy a Pink album.

I DID NOT accidentally come across what my DH is giving me for Christmas.....

I also DID NOT have to e-mail a friend to ask for her twin sister's last name and husband's name just so I could send her a Christmas card when I should darn well know that info!!

Finally, I DID NOT give up my tree decorating rights just to let the kids have a good time, no matter how much I wanted to spread out the cluster of ornaments 3 feet or lower (the top 3 feet are bare - and I DID NOT leave it that way).

(And I DID NOT let PM decorate JC instead of the tree)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Fragment Friday - Hmm Hm Hmm Hmm to me!

Friday Fragments?

Fragment Friday - all the stuff too small for it's own post, too good to throw away!
You can see many more fragments at Half Past Kissin' Time!

"Happy Birthday to me, I'm one hundred and three,
I still go to pre-school, AANNND I miss my mommy"
"My mommy's at work, she married a jerk " (not really - it's just the song, mom!)
"She hired a monkey to do my homework!"

I learned that from a bunch of 1st graders last month. Appropriate for today I thought, since I'm 29 (for the fourth time) today!
I was actually giddy that we found AM's iPod this week. It ended up being in a spare backpack since the end of August. Santa was actually preparing to buy her a new one. The Easter bunny was quite disappointed, though, that the last one had not even made it a full year. Whew!!
When JC spits up, PM says "uh-oh DRIP!!" and gets freaked out
MD has been walking around the house lifting two 3lb hand weights with his shirt off. He'll pause every now and then to tuck his feet under the couch and do some crunches. He says he wants to get really strong and have square bumps on his belly.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A Thousand Words Thursday - Home

It's once again A Thousand Words Thursday - go to Cheaper Than Therapy to see even more!

Cheaper Than Therapy

This photo was taken as my husband arrived at the airport after an 18 month deployment to Afghanistan. He is being greeted by a very good friend (that story is at least another thousand words) from another National Gaurd Unit that was not deployed. The photo really does say it all.....

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - Thematic Photographic

Thematic Photographic's theme this week is "bright" -this theme photo stuff is right up my alley and perfect for Wordless Wednesday. The rules are here at Written Inc.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Totally Talented Tuesday

Thanks to Dee at Two of a kind, working on a full house we bring you Totally Talented Tuesday! I have 2 nominations for Totally Talented Tuesday ~ The first is my just-turned-five-year-old for his fantastic skills at building all things Lego. Here is his most recent Lego creation, a robot. It moves his head, arms, and 3 legs and can curl up into a ball (he demonstrated). I am so in love with Legos, they are truly a "smart" toy!

Second, I have my 3 oldest for their wonderful cookie decorating skills. Even though the recipe for icing I used was totally runny, they made the best of it and decorated a pile of sugar cookies. The kids helped make the cookies the day before and couldn't wait to frost them!!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Mission: Monday


Prize giveaways and more - just visit Dirty Socks & Pizza or Halftime Lessons for the rules and accept your mission!


In case anyone is interested - it is currently -11° F with a wind chill of -35° F. It's no longer snowing, but the total was 9½ inches!! School has been called off and they just re-opened Interstates 29 & 94 this morning. I haven't gone outside yet, but if I want my mail, I'd better shovel the walk so she can get to the door. SO glad I don't have to drive anywhere!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

x x Santa wuz here x x

Santa made it to our little town this weekend. We went to see him and of course have a picture taken. I wish I had taken my own, but seeing as there was a professional already there to take pictures I thought it would be rude. BUT then everyone else did it. AND this is what I ended up with.

Its a photo of the photo, but you can see the quality I'm having issues with. I'd sure like to know how to get that gig. The guy had all the tools, even a light meter, but seems to have no settings on his $2000 camera but "auto". The flash he set up was too direct and should have been diffused. To top it off, they print on the spot with a high quality (but still desktop) desktop inkjet photo printer. I did another organization's Santa photos last year (filled in for a colleague) and no one complained about having photos mailed to them. I understand the need to have them now, but as a client would forgo STAT photos at the sacrifice of quality. Maybe that's just the photographer in me talking.
Anyway, while we waited, we had hot cider, a volunteer read children's books, and there was a big table full of coloring and activity pages. Santa gave each kid a bag with an apple, a candy cane, and a handful of chocolate. JC got one, too (thanks Santa!). PM refused to sit on Santa's lap but at least held it together and stood by him for a photo. MD told him he wanted an Indiana Jones Sound Whip, AM an iDog. PM gave him a cold stare. JC did not deposit any bodily fluids on him (you're welcome, Santa!). I did manage to coax PM into a timid "thank you". Then JC was hijacked by Mrs. Santa (ok, not really, just one kid's grandma). She walked him around the entire time.
The girls and AM's BFF "J" catch a story. "J"'s family showed up right after we had our picture taken. They were planning on next going out to a Christmas tree farm. I wonder how it went, the temp was in the single digits and the wind was gusting to 30 miles per hour. If you watch the NATIONAL news, nearby Fargo made an appearance for the fantastic 40- F temps this morning as a big storm rolls through. The cold started yesterday, the snow late night. I'm fairly certain I can't get my car out of the driveway today. I even got a personal call that church was cancelled. Not sure if that was because of my job there, or if a group called all the regulars. Given the forecast I had already made arrangements not to be there, anyway. Good thing Santa showed up yesterday, I'm pretty sure even magic reindeer freeze solid when left on the roof in this weather!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Friday Fragments

Friday Fragments?

As prescribed by Half-Past Kissing Time - All the stuff too small to be a post, too goo to discard...

PM, 2, seems to have a saying of the week. It's recently been "what goin on!?" shouted by her dolls when they talk to each other. Is this her idea of how adults carry conversation?

MD ran out of Pull-Ups last night so I was forced to let him sleep without. I woke him at midnight and carried him to the bathroom, he went. He was dry in the morning. Is this all the effort I need - are Pull-Ups a crutch?

I need to post some photos of MD at gymnastics.

AM came home with a note about Girl Scouts starting. As far as I know there hasn't been a troop in town for some time. I'm actually very excited about this. I was toying with the idea of calling and trying to get something started here. I'm glad someone did!

Stupid Kinesio Tape left a rash again on PM. I'm officially done with the stuff, sadly. I was really happy with what it was doing for her. I wonder if there are alternatives.

It's almost 5 am and I'm up. Jackson is back to bed, so must I be.

Good Night!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Thousand Words Thursday

Cheaper Than Therapy

This is my first Thousand Words Thursday. It is a chance to put up one of the many many photos stored here on my computer, one that is worth a thousand words. I'm digging in the archives today, but in the future will try to have a recent photo to post. This idea comes from Jen at Cheaper Than Therapy. So here it is...

A typical day at the Fraase home.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Wishes for the new year...

Just getting a head start. Here are a few things I am thinking about, I invite any reader out there to add to the list:

1. to slow down and not always wish the kids were older, they will be all too soon
2. to be funnier (I'm just not witty - that's hubby)
3. to excercise my brain more often - read, toss the calculator, do number puzzles, learn new vocab and use it (will this help with #2?)
4. loose an appropriate amount of weight, or just feel better about the size I am (ha!)
5. read longer books to my kids (AM loved Pippi Longstocking)
6. dress up for my husband (as it turns out, pajama pants are not so cute every day of the week)

there we's a start. Any suggestions?

I finally caught him smiling. JC Chunky-Boy Fraase almost 3 mos

Monday, December 8, 2008

I'm It....

I've been tagged by the Rambler at the Ramble Room -

The rules are to list 6 things that make me happy:

1. Food made especially for me because they know I'll like it (my husband does this!)
2. Listening to my kids talk to each other when they are getting along and think I can't hear them
3. Talking to my husband about anything, because it so rarely happens without numerous interruptions
4. My baby looking up and smiling at me while they're nursing
5. Talking to my best friend for hours
6. Having a drink with my husband and/or my rowdy family members (aka the "loud" family)

I'd like to tag:

Jen at Life Is Chaos, Give Me More

Now I'd better get back to work, taking care of other people's newborns. Can that be a favorite, too?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Constraint Therapy, Kinesio Tape, and AFO's

PM finished up her first round of constraint induced therapy in October, now I can stand back and see what we have accomplished. She has much improved motor control with her right hand and definitely more strength. PM is now more willing to use two hands to do two-handed activities rather than struggle with one. I posted the rest of the videos I had of her therapy HERE. She is also willing to wear the "clam shell" constraint during the day or during her therapy without complaint. Sometimes she doesn't want it off at all. However, I think she'll benefit from a second round perhaps in the spring. The reason I'd like to do it that soon is that she turns 3 in June, then there is a strong possibility that her state medical assistance will run out. Our insurance pays first, but so far the state has been able to cover the overage. It would be nice to get as many services in before we're on our own. At night, or any time she starts to get tired she tends to curl her right hand up in that little fist again. I don't expect CIT to work miracles, I know she will always have a deficit, but I can see that it helps. The fist has been happening more often during the day, so the clam shell has come back more often for full days. I just wonder when do we have full potential? Will over-using the constraint method eventually slow her expected progress in the "good" hand? I have decided to give the Kinesio tape another go now that winter is fully upon us. It will serve as a gentle reminder to keep her wrist up and open those fingers. My hope is that the dry, cold weather will keep her from getting the rashes she got this summer from it.

She will also be due for new AFO's before spring as well. Her little toes are peeking over the edge of the plastic and I was told to look for spots on her leg that may indicate they no longer fit. PM got the first set of AFO's in April, so it would be pretty good if she makes it a full year before upgrading. It will be several years before she will be out of AFO's. Her biggest hurdle is that her right knee still hyperextends any time the AFO is not on. She needs to build up strength and train the leg not to snap right back into that position. That will take time. Eventually the high AFO she has now will get shorter and shorter until she no longer needs them. In the mean time I was given several pairs of shoe specifically designed for use with an AFO. They belonged to my friend's sweet girl Caroline. The problem with regular shoes is that they are not nearly wide enough and you end up buying regular shoes several sizes larger than the foot...can you see PM tripping around in AM's shoes? Big shoes kind of defeat the effort of helping them walk better.

On the lighter side: MD went to Santa's Village with his preschool. I asked him who he saw there..
MD: (flatly) Santa.
Mom: Who else? (they each got a children's book signed by the author)
MD: (more animated) Mrs. Claus! (turns to AM) She's like a girl Santa!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Busy Busy

Sorry I've been ignoring this blog somewhat. I've been trying to get all the Christmas photos done. It's nice to have the business, but I think it's at the expense of my house. I'm not a fantastic housekeeper, but it has been particularly disaster-like around here. Trying to get the kids to help is like pulling teeth. What I need it to have Steve tell the kids to do stuff, they listen to him on the first try instead of me following behind them "clean up, clean up, clean up!" He says I need to channel my inner Drill Sergeant.

I am excited, however, that my sister-in-law asked me to do their photos this year. I've only been married for 8 years and a photographer the entire time, but this is the first year any of my in-law family has asked for Christmas cards. I also did one for my new's funny to have cousins the same age as my own children. The Iversons and Fraases do produce some very cute kids, tho!

My Niece and Nephew

My sweetie pie cousin