The boys have been in school for about 3 weeks now and we had an open house on Thursday night. They were both so excited to show off their classrooms. Avery couldn’t wait to go to the cafeteria to get a cookie…go figure! Here are a few pictures from the night:
Avery at his spot at the table in his Kindergarten classroom.
Avery with his teacher, Mrs Morrison. She is a friend of mine and we know he’ll have a GREAT year in her classroom.
Blake in his desk in his 2nd grade classroom.
Blake with his teacher, Mrs Baker. She has been so sweet already this year we know he’s going to have a great year as well. So blessed to have such great teachers at Roosevelt.
And this one is of Avery with Blake’s teacher. For some reason he wanted to have his picture taken with her too…she happily obliged!
So glad that the boys are enjoying school so much. They both jump up every morning to get ready for school. They almost always have extra time in the morning before they have to leave. So grateful that I don’t have to rush them out the door! And they are doing a great job of walking to school with the other group of kids. Pretty sure that this is going to be a great year!
These are a simple and tasty snack. I could eat the whole batch but I usually share some with my kids:)
1 bag pretzel sticks
1 packet dry ranch seasoning
1 c vegetable oil
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dill weed
1. Pour oil into large bowl.
2. Add ranch packet, garlic powder, and dill weed.
3. Add pretzels and stir until well coated.
4. Spread onto large baking sheet. Put in oven at 200 degrees for 1 hr. Stirring every 15 minutes.
5. Cool and ENJOY!
Every since announcing that Avery will be having surgery people are coming out of the woodwork to offer their help. I have always known that we have good people in our lives but when things get tough is when you really find out who your friends are…I promise not to break into song…so to speak. We have had offers to help get Blake to school, offers for places to stay, and many others. I am so happy that we have these wonderful, generous people in our lives! I don’t know how we would have gotten through what we’ve gotten through up to this point without these kind of people in our lives. I am thrilled that we have surrounded ourselves with these types of people and hope that some day we can return the favor!
So here is a major thank you to those who have offered help in any form. And PLEASE don’t take this as a plea for more offers and don’t feel bad if you haven’t offered anything. We will be happy with thoughts and prayers as we enter another difficult chapter in our lives. We will come out of it even stronger than we were going in because of all the support! Thank you!
I feel like the past few weekends I have not accomplished much of anything. However this weekend was a different story! Check out all the things I accomplished…pretty proud of myself.
The first thing I worked on is something I learned from an organization training I attended last week. The speaker suggested making mailboxes for everyone in the house. Then when there is something they need to look at it goes in there so they know it is for them. I only have two right now as I don’t know if the kids need any yet but I am hoping that this will free up some table and counter space because we constantly have things laying there. The other tip she gave us that I loved was to get a filing box and organize the important papers/items in there. I altered her suggestion a bit to fit my life. I got a file organizer and put hanging files in there. In the hanging files there are and have folders in there too that are for important things: photography, daycare, Blake’s school stuff, Avery’s school stuff and more. I used to have a pile of folders on the dishwasher which would just pile up and fall off when we moved it to the sink. So now it is upright and taking up WAY less space. I LOVE this and hope the system works like I’m hoping!
Got some of my fall decorations out for display. Isnt’ that pumpkin cute. Saw someone do this when I was on the Tour of Homes a few years ago and finally did it here. Found the little fall colored beads at a garage sale for $.50!! SCORE!
Hung the barn ledges that built with plans from Ana-White.com. I built them two weekends ago (so I guess I was slightly productive) and stained them last week. They were super easy and what I’ve been wanting in my living room for quite some time! I LOVE them. I only put two wrong holes in the wall to hang them:) The first one went up smoothly with no removing of screws but the second was a different story! They are NOT perfect (as my husband so kindly pointed out) but they are level and even AND I built them and am proud. Now I just need to fill them.
I also hung this Ten Dollar Ledge shelf which also came from Ana-white.com. This one was even easier and I am building another one for another wall in Avery’s room.
Another project I finally finshed was finishing off our bathroom. I finally feel like it is complete! I found the perfect pictures after looking for months! Thank you Gordmans! I saw these at Kohls too for twice the price…pays to shop around!
The final project that I accomplished in our bathroom was to put the handles on the vanity. I have had these for months but I was SO nervous to do this because I didn’t want to drill the holes wrong. I started to do this a week or so ago and the drill bit started to migrate in the wrong direction. That scared me and thankfully I stopped in time and the mess up was covered by the handle. They are now on and fully functional! I LOVE our bathroom…speaking of I don’t know if I ever gave a full ‘tour’ of the finished product so that will be in a future post.
Ahh…I feel so good about accomplishing all that! I hope the next weekend can be as productive. I have a fall decoration project I’m working on so I’m hoping to finish that this week.
It drives my husband nuts how anal I am about things. He is not that way and doesn’t understand the mentality of everything having a place and that there is a ‘right’ way (i.e. MY way) to do things. But I must explain that I come by this naturally. It is how my dad is and from what I understand how the rest of his family is as well!
Let me give you some examples:
- When you mow lawn you don’t keep going round and round you trim the ends of a square or section so that you have room to turn around and then you go in straight lines back and forth so that it looks the best. Growing up on a farm there was a lot of mowing to be done and it had to be done in this particular fashion. Believe me it does make a difference! Think of those golf courses that are beautifully sculpted…they have a ‘pattern’, if you will, of how they do it. Wouldn’t look the same if they didn’t do it that way!
- Cars should be washed by hand and be sparkly and shiny. When you wash them you need to wash them and then wipe them down to avoid spots. Then when you are done with the outside you open the doors and wipe the water off the inside of the doors and the interior with that wet towel. This one is not high on my list of things I’m anal about but I’m sure my dad cringes when he sees our vehicles, especially during hunting season.
- My dad’s shop used to be neat and arranged when I was a kid. I spent lots of time hanging in the shed with my dad as a kid and when he needed a tool he could tell me exactly what drawer and where in the drawer that tool was so I could easily find it. I definitely subscribe to that mentality which drives Mike nuts! I don’t know how to train the three boys in my house that EVERYTHING has a spot and should remain in that spot when not in use. This way you know where to find it when you need it!
Now let me just say that over time I have learned to let some things go…such as laundry. Mike does all the laundry and while he doesn’t always fold things the way I would or put the towels in the closet where I would but I don’t say much. I figure that if it is being done I don’t need to complain! OR I’ll be the one doing it:) I’m sure there’s a longer list that maybe I’ll have to write about later but this gives you an idea of what I’m talking about.
What are you particular about in your house?
After the 4th surgery and scary complication things died down for quite a while. We got to enjoy having our two boys and let them be kids. The following summer they did another heart cath to determine when they were going to repair the hole in his heart. They did some ballooning to open up a narrowing in the pulmonary artery and also used some coils to redirect bloodflow to his lungs.
The next surgery was scheduled for September 2007. The surgery was to repair the hole in his heart as well as connect a collateral vessel (a blood vessel his body developed to get enough blood to his lungs since his pulmonary arteries were small) to the main pulmonary artery and get the blood flowing where it should. The surgery went well. The hole was patched but they needed to poke a small hole in the patch because it created too high of pressure in his heart.
There was a surprise however. He was brought out of surgery on a temporary pacemaker. We were not informed of this being an possibility so it was a HUGE shock to us. The thought of him having to have a pacemaker permanently was unthinkable as it would mean he would not have the ‘normal’ life we wanted…he would not be able to play sports, etc. At first the surgeon didn’t even want to discuss it because he felt it was going to be temporary. Word was that they typically wait 5-7 before deciding if a permanent pacemaker is necessary so it was a waiting game.
The problem with his heart was that the top of his heart was not talking to the bottom part and they were going at different paces. The surgeon was dead set that it was going to start working but after a week he reluctantly scheduled the surgery to place the pacemaker. As I said it was not a great time for us thinking about all the restrictions that would mean for his life, especially hockey!
The pacemaker surgery was scheduled for 12:45 pm on October 4th, 2007. The morning was spent trying to occupy him as he couldn’t eat due to the surgery. One of the male nurses was known in the PICU for using the hand sanitizer to draw characters on the windows for patients. He came and drew a SpongeBob picture on the window and his nurse happened to look up at the monitor and noticed that his heart appeared to be working in normal sinus rhythm (both parts were talking to each other). It was 10:30 am! The nurse called in a cardiologist to verify that what she was seeing was correct and he agreed. The pacemaker surgery was called off and our boy had his normal life back! The surgeon called him his ‘little miracle worker’.
The day we got home he got out of the car and proceeded to hit the baseball off the tee. He is an amazing kid and I can’t even believe that he was born with a heart condition. No one would even guess it.
This brings me to where we are at now. He is currently scheduled for another surgery on October 12th. He needs to have the valve replaced that is in there as it is leaking and causing his heart to work harder than necessary. It is going to be a tough one this time I think because he is older and more aware of what is going on. We know he’ll be resilient as he always has been but he will be missing school, hunting and hockey…that will be the worst part for him actually.
More to come on this continuing journey.
Because I enjoy doing crafty, fun things and because I’ve seen so many inspiring things on pinterest.com I wanted to find something to make for the boys’ teachers for the 1st day of school. I gave them to the teachers at entrance conferences. NO they weren’t bribery but I it may have added a leg up for my youngest who sometimes needs it.
I made these cute monograms that I was inspired by in this post: http://dollarstorecrafts.com/2011/08/make-teacher-monograms/. They were fun but also a bit tricky. For the crayon one I used broken crayons (what mom doesn’t have those around?). I had to cut or break some of them to make them the right size but that wasn’t too tough. The pencil one was a bit easier. I cut them with a hack saw (I think that’s what it’s called) and sharpened the end of some of them to get them the right size. I think they turned out nicely.
I also made them these boxes to survive the first day of school. I was inspired by this: http://beeinourbonnet.blogspot.com/2010/08/first-day-survival-kit.html. Mine were a bit more simple and I filled them with chocolate candies and some starburst (which was insisted on by Avery). I hope that the teachers don’t need them to survive MY children but it is always nice to have a little treat in your desk drawer.
Hope all you teachers and parents had a great first day of school!
After last night I was sure that I was going to be in tears this morning dropping them off but I made it. There was no discussion about it this morning and I got to walk them to school. I promised to let them walk home by themselves after school so they can feel ‘big’!! Although they were quite annoyed I got a few pictures too.
Our traditional front door picture
The crew walking. The boys are meeting up with some other kids this year to cross a busy street safer.
Picture in front of the Roosevelt Sign
I got ONE chance to get this picture of the two of them together before Blake ran off to play.
Avery…all lined up and ready for his first day!
My heart is broken! My youngest starts kindergarten tomorrow and this year the boys are walking to school. I have practiced their route with them and they are meeting some other kids down the road so they can all cross the busy intersection together. I was set to walk with them to school the first day because I want to be there to send Avery off but he doesn’t want me to. He announced to me just before his nap today that ‘they are big and don’t need me to come with’…sob! Then I said I would just meet them at school so I can say goodbye and he said ‘no’…sob, sob!
I kinda figured that he would change his mind as the day wore on but he insisted I not walk along. I changed my strategy a bit and told him that I am his mom and I only get to do this once in his life and I was coming. He’d have to deal! He gets the rest of the year to be big and not have me with…and I’ll let them walk home alone. That seemed to ease things a bit. Nothing more was said and I just let it go. I tucked him into bed and hoped he fall asleep fast (not something he is known for) but soon heard his little feet coming down the steps to find me. He then started the tears that they are big and he doesn’t want me to go…boo-hoo!!! I just said we’d talk about it tomorrow before school.
I have a feeling mom is going to win this one. I just wish he didn’t want to be grown up so bad. Or that he could at least pretend to need his mommy still. I didn’t think I’d cry dropping him off but if he shuns me I just might:(
Blake, me, and Grandma Sue
Grandpa Bruce & Grandma Patty
The whole Como family…I bribed Avery with ice cream so he’d take the picture:)
After the game we got to go down on the field and let the boys run the bases. Apparently they do this every Sunday. If you ever do it DON’T step on the grass. I guess they are pretty strict about that. They have people standing every 10 ft or so to tell you not to get on the grass. One lady who is apparently a tour guide (I assume for Target Field) felt the need to yell at my mother-in-law! Here are some of the pictures from that and a video of the boys running the bases:
The fam-damily again…kinda bright
View from Center Field wall
The boys…acting like they like each other