Friday, August 29, 2008


Elisa: Well, both of her traumatized fingers lost the fingernails. The fingers look weird, but they don't seem to bother her. Several people have assured me that her nails will grow back just fine, without deformities, because she's so young. I hope so.

Benjamin: He is very ready to get potty trained, and I'm sticking with it this time. I gave up too quickly (after only half a day) the last few times. I just quit when he started to resist or had a couple of accidents. This time I'm devoting most of my attention to him, and after 3 days it seems to be working. He likes to flush the toilet and sing, "Bye-bye, my pee!" (he came up with that, not me)

Sammy: He is getting good at hitting them with the flyswatter. He usually kills at least one fly every time he gets the flyswatter. Often the flyswatter magically becomes a sword with which to hit everything. They make weapons out of anything.

Dominic: He was accepted at Walden University into his doctorate program! Classes start after Labor Day. Since it's an on-line school, he can still work without changing his schedule. And since he received his Master's from them, they're giving him a discount on tuition.

Me: After the race I gave myself a little break from running, but the break kept getting longer. I finally came up with new goals to keep myself going. Old goals - run 3 times a week and get in shape for a race. New goals - run 4 to 5 times a week and lose weight. You see, I went down to my pre-pregnancy size but never lost the weight. My aim is to get within a healthy BMI (body mass index) range.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Benjamin's superhero party

Sierra, Batman (Benjamin), The Red Knight (Andrew), The Flash (Sammy), and Magic Ducky Guy (Tim) admiring the cool cake.

Although it's been almost 2 weeks, I don't want to forget the details. So, without further ado...

What a great party! This was the first big birthday party I’ve put together. A couple of weeks before his birthday, I asked Benjamin what he wanted, and he said “cousins!” He has 10 cousins, aged 10 years to 8 months, living within this state. I also invited Sierra, our 9-year-old neighbor, who acts like part of the family. I over-planned so no one would get bored. It wasn’t necessary; we met at a park, and the kids played at the playground during the down-times.

As people arrived, I gave them capes I made from a sheet and let them choose a superhero name. While Dominic started grilling the hamburgers and hot dogs, we tested the kids’ super powers: who can throw a bat-a-rang the farthest, jump the farthest, run the fastest. They also played “Bat, Bat, Joker” (duck, duck, goose), and “Simon Says.”

After lunch we played “Tape the Utility Belt on Batman.” Benjamin really wanted a piƱata, but I couldn’t find one I liked (aka cheap) so I just threw the candy around, which was still fun and much safer. As people started leaving, Dominic launched a rocket several times until it got lost.

Honestly, I couldn’t have done it without my sister Emily, sister-in-law Marrisse and, of course, Dominic. Emily took charge of the games while I helped Dominic prepare lunch, and Marrisse made the perfect Batman cake. I think everyone had fun, so it was a good party.

Friday, August 22, 2008

My poor computer

Why do I keep having computer problems? This last week I even had a lot to write about. But my pc kept shutting down (or not turning on at all) for no apparent reason. Dominic replaced the CMOS battery, and I was good to go. Then, I couldn't connect to the internet. Without internet this is just a big, expensive paper weight. Again, Dominic took a look, worked his magic, and the world was right again. This is a great computer; 4 years old and still doing great, but the parts are starting to wear out. It may become the kids' computer soon.

We had plans for a trip this week with other family members, but plans fell through. Instead, we did fun things together around here. (We saved a lot on gas.) On Wednesday we all met at a nearby waterpark. We were there long enough to feel worn out and to get properly sunburned; I promise I wore sunscreen, but my shoulders just like to burn. Ok, ok, I'm the only one who got red - my children are more like their dad and tanned, even with sunscreen on. To paraphrase a family friend: some people marry looks, some for money, and some for fame, but my family marries for pigment.

Thursday night we all met at my sister Emily's house for dinner. My children disappeared as soon as we walked in the door, and I only saw them in snatches for the rest of the evening. I don't mind. The adults had time to chat and laugh, and the kids were very happy. Last night as I put Sammy to bed, he told me that Daniel (just 10 months older) is his favorite cousin. When I asked why, he said "He's so funny. He's even funnier than me."

This week Dominic has been working on his graduate school application. Another good reason I'm glad we didn't go on the trip - the place had no internet, so he couldn't have submitted the application in time. They'll let him know on Monday whether or not he's accepted. Cross your fingers!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

So much happening

Wow, so much has been happening. I ran in a 5K race, Benjamin turned 3, I'm reading an addictive book, the kids continue to do and say funny things, and I was chosen to test a game. Warning: this is a ridiculously long blog entry. Feel free to read it over a few days.

Before I begin, here's the update on Elisa: her fingers are completely healed. A lingering effect is on her fingernails, which are yellowish with dark spots, probably bruises under the nails. Unfortunately, she still puts her fingers in dangerous places.

The race. I did it! Back in March I decided to run in a 5K, or 3.1 mile race, which I haven't run since high school. I started out very slow: 5 minute warm-up and 5 minute run around the block. Each week I increased my run by 5 minutes until reaching 45. I took Lisy with me in the jogging stroller, and she took her morning nap. On the days Dominic worked, I dropped off the boys at the playground and ran with Lisy around the park.

On the day of the race, the boys went to a pool party. We had to leave early so that I had time to walk to the starting area; I pushed the boys in the double stroller and carried Lisy in the Snugli for about half an hour (it was on Saturday, when Dominic works 6 am to 10 pm and takes our only car). I left the kids with a friend while I ran. The weather was hot, hovering around 100 degrees. I fell in behind some friends and stayed with them. I don't know my official time, but my friends' unofficial time was about 27:30, so mine was, too.

Benjamin is 3! He's getting so big. He idealizes Sammy, and sometimes they play too much at night to sleep. Dominic once commented that "it must feel like a slumber party every night when your brother is your best friend." For some reason Ben-Ben is fascinated with eyebrows. He likes to point out mine, then ask "do I have eyebows?" (he can't say his r's) When I asked what he wanted for his birthday, he said "cousins!" So tomorrow we're holding a party with his local cousins.

Twilight. This is an addictive book. It's a good thing Dominic and I are reading it together or I wouldn't get anything done. We couldn't find any used copies, so we bought it new. Great purchase.

Funny kids. Lisy is so proud of herself. She likes to climb, and whenever she reaches the top (of the coffee table, usually) she exclaims, "ta da!" and then claps. The other day I discovered a mess and asked who did it. Both boys claimed it was Lisy. I asked, " are you just saying that to get out of trouble?" And Benjamin promptly replied, "not this time." Sammy is fascinated with the Olympic games. After watching a volleyball match, he practiced the overhand serve. After watching the swimming and diving competitions, he told me he wants to go to the Olympics. Good luck.

Wrath of the Lich King. Ok, this is going to sound silly, but I'm excited to be selected as a beta tester for the new expansion of World of Warcraft. Beta testers are given access to new computer games before they're released so the company can fix any problems. Dominic signed up both of us, and they chose me! I think I already play the game too much, so I'm a little nervous about this. It'll be so much fun!