Aidan at Beach

Aidan at Beach

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Four. . .

. . .years. . .

Since I came back from lunch to find that I had a message from the travel agent our In Country agency uses and she wanted me to call back because she had our dates and we need to get on the visas and plane tickets and Moscow hotel reservations right away. . .

Since I called our agency, with shaking hands and numb lips, and confirmed that, yes, we did in fact have travel dates and a Court Date and that yes, we were going back to Russia to get Aidan!

Since I began the excited/happy/freaked out mad dash to get the forms filled out and sent with our passports to get said visas processed and plane tickets purchased and reservations made and emails sent to our In Country coordinator and thousands and thousands of dollars in clean unmarked bills from the bank. . .

Since we began making lists of what we wanted to bring followed shortly by lists of what we knew we needed to bring, closely followed by lists of what we knew we could bring weight wise. . .

Since we started to allow ourselves to imagine what it might be really like to hold our son, to rock our son to sleep, to watch him sleep in his crib, to play with our son, to dress him in the cute outfits that people had bought for him. . .

Since we began the process of putting our private lives on hold for a month and my professional life on hold for three months. . .

Since the last February 29th--a day that I used to not like at all because it was just one more day added on to the winter that I am usually ready to end at this point but which is now one of my all time favorite days!

But, wait!!!!  Hasn't Aidan always been a part of our lives???? 

Happy Leap Day! 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Pink Stuff

Over the past four years, I have had to school my self on the signs that Aidan is sick.  He doesn't complain.  Ever.  And to complicate matters, he has had maybe four fevers in the past four years, two of which went away within six hours.  So, that is never a sign of sickness for me.

Aidan spent so much time during the first two years of his life being sick, that he still doesn't recognize when things are not normal.  Being sick was normal for him!  And he already knows he will be okay and can just go on.  Breaks my heart.

A couple of weeks ago, I had taken Aidan to the pediatrician because his tonsils looked huge--one side was so big it was practically touching that thing that hangs down in the back of the throat.  They weren't red, just huge.  And he was snoring at night.  Nothing was wrong that the doctor could see.

About a week ago, I noticed that the ever present cold (since October) was back again.  However, it seemed to clear up during the day with Triaminic Cold medicine.

A few days ago, I saw a notice at the door to Aidan's daycare class room saying that there were 2 children with Strep.  That sign was changed to 4 children the next day.  Trouble is brewing.

Thursday afternoon, being a nice day, Pat picked Aidan up a little early and they came home to play.  Aidan even went over to one of the neighbor kids houses to play for a bit.  But, he came home early saying his throat hurt and his tummy didn't feel good.  Uh oh. 

Dinner time, Aidan ate, sort of, but was very tired.  Knowing something was probably up, I put him to bed early where he fell asleep almost immediately.  He sleep nearly 12 hours.  When he woke up, he seemed much better and even said so.  He wanted to go to school.  No fever and he said he was feeling better.  The throat was a little red, but not horrendously so, so off he went to school.


The nagging feeling that things were not all good stayed with me.  When I got to work, I called the pediatrician and made the appointment for early afternoon.  When I picked Aidan up, he seemed totally fine and even said his throat hurt a little, but not very much and he could swallow fine.  Hmmmm......

When we got to the doctors office, the nurse listened to the symptoms I had noticed over the past few days and took a swab of his throat.  In came the pediatrician, who saw an amazingly healthy looking Aidan bouncing off the walls and an exasperated Mommy trying to get him to sit down and sit still.  "Well, you don't look sick!"  She said with a quick look at me. . .he never does!!!!  She then asked what made me think to bring him in so I again went through the symptoms.  She typed everything in to her little computer and then said we should get a strep test and I told her the nurse had already done one. . .and ping!!  The doctor said, "oh!  It's back. . .and it's positive.  Mommy's intuition."  And smiled at me. 

So, we're on the pink stuff for the next 10 to 14 days.  Hopefully, it will work.  Last time we had to go on to the gross white stuff shortly afterward.  Oh, and I called Winwood to change the sign to 5 children with Strep.

Fortunately, so far, I have been able to figure it out if Aidan needs to go in.  But, I worry I might miss one!!  So, I sometimes seem to badger Aidan: how's your throat/head/tummy?  Whereby Aidan has gotten used to telling me, "Mama, nothing hurts on my body.  Okay?"  sigh.

He's one tough little dude.  And I love him dearly.  I don't want him to be sick and me not know it!!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Remember you are dust. . .

. . .and to dust you will return. 

Ash Wednesday.  Our annual reminder of our humanity.  Time to slow it down and reflect on our relationship with God. 

Pat took his parents to church yesterday and I went by myself during my lunch break.  We got together for dinner and, as expected, Aidan noticed the cross on mine and Pat's forheads, said he liked them and that he wants one too.  So, next year. . .I'll take him to the childrens service for Ash Wednesday.  Where they will hopefully explain what the ashes are for and how we are to remember that we aren't God. 

Here's wishing you all a Holy Lent.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The End of Epiphany

The season of Epiphany is ending today and with it our long weekend.  We won't have another lengthy time off until Easter.  But, at least that's only 6 weeks away!!  And it will be April then!

Saturday, we went to the mall and bought some new PJ's for Aidan. . .size 7!!  They are big, but they will fit him next fall.  I cleaned out all the 5's from his drawer because they are just too small.  I also bought one new pair of jeans and some patches for his old ones.  Now to finish cleaning out the things he has out grown or worn out!!  The night time growing pains continue, although he hasn't grown since New Years.  But, I am sure that the next growth spurt is just around the corner!

I took Aidan up to the Ice House on Sunday afternoon.  Pat had to work the 3-11 shift, so we thought we would go and play a bit.  But, he didn't want to skate when we got there!  All he wanted to do was watch the bigger boys play hockey--tournaments were going on on the other rink.  Actually, it was probably not a bad thing.  The Free Skate was really packed so it would have bene difficult to move and the ice was probably chewed up.

Yesterday, I took Aidan to a birthday party at Monkey Joes.  It was in Winchester. . .nearly an hour's drive!!  I don't typically go to Winchester.  In fact, I rarely go there.  I probably haven't been there for a couple of years.  Aidan had fun though.  It was one of those bouncy places and he loves those!!!

They also had an air hockey table.  Aidan and I decided we gotta get us one of those!! 

After the party, I got Aidan some lunch at Chic-fil-a and then headed back toward Leesburg.  We had pre-purchased tickets to go see The Secret World of Arriety and were meeting one of Aidan's school friends at the theatre.  Great movie!!!  We loved it!!  On the way back out of the theatre, Aidan said he wants to see it again!!  : )  The pre-views were really good too.  There were a couple I know we'll be going to. . .particularly Madagascar 3 which comes out this summer!!

After that we headed home, where Daddy was already.  We ate out, but I was able to get things going to tonights chicken and sausage jambolaya.  All I have to do is make the rice.  (Pat doesn't like pancakes for dinner). 

And that's about all that's going on with us.  Back to the routine today, Ash Wednesday services tomorrow and Aidan's hockey on Saturday.  Let's not talk about the Caps, okay?  I think they have a few bad habits to give up for Lent. . .

Play dates to be scheduled with hopes for some nice weather coming and the Family Room floor installation also to be scheduled.  Fun times ahead!!!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Exciting Month of February

So, our excitement of the week came at the hands of Leesburg Elementary.  Just a little misunderstanding.  Aidan came home saying his teacher told him he wasn't allowed to eat the cookies that I had packed for him for his snack.  The home made fresh Valentine's special cookies.  I felt terrible because this has not been the first time Aidan has said he wasn't allowed to eat part of the snack I sent.  Needless to say, Pat was not a happy Daddy on this!  So, I wrote a note.  I didn't know the reason he wasn't allowed to eat them and I couldn't fathom why a teacher would send a verbal message home like that through a child of 5!  I am perfectly available, which I reminded her in my note, and to make sure, I provided all of my phone numbers and my email too!

The teacher called me.  At 8:30 am.  At work.  15 minutes after school had started.   She got my note.

She was awesome.  Very patient with me and apologized for not contacting me in person.  But, actually, what she had told Aidan was that he should save the cookies for later.  Most of the children in Aidan's class get what the school provides for snack--not much.  And Aidan always has many many choices so she thought, to be fair to the other children who don't get cookies sent from home, he should save those for later!  She also made sure I knew Aidan was not in trouble--although that is what he thought!  And she said she should have sent a note home but hadn't thought about the fact that I don't see Aidan until 6 hours after he leaves school, by which time her message has been transformed into something not even close to what she said!!  In my turn, I admitted that I had not been paying close attention during Back to School Night about the instructions on what to send and not send for snack because we were signed up for School Snack at that time. . .I also promised to not send the cookies and to be more sensitive to what the other children don't have. 

This public school thing is rough!!!  It was so much easier during our Private Preschool days. . .  : )  But, really, Aidan's school is great and I love how much he is learning there!  I will take some video of him this weekend reading.  You'll be amazed!

Speaking of video! Here's a bit from last weeks Mini Mites. Not sure if it comes through, but Aidan did score!!!

And, because he scored, I bought him a Zamboni!!

He uses it to clean up the area when he plays with his Monster Trucks. . .  : )

Speaking of Monster Trucks!!  Aidan is learning that the chores we ask him to do really do pay off.  He gets an allowance and he now uses that allowance to purchase things we no longer purchase him. . .such as Monster Trucks!!!  He has a new Gravedigger. . .
We're hoping to maybe take him to see the real one this summer on our way to the beach in North Carolina.  Think he'll like it???

Speaking of the beach, we have our house!!!  We're going to be heading off to Avon, North Carolina bright and early on June 30th and will be coming back a week later.  We're all so excited to go!!  Last year we had a total of maybe one day at the beach. . .on the Pacific Ocean. . .which is cold and rough. . .so we're looking forward to 7 whole days of sun, surf and sand!!  On the nice warm Atlantic Ocean!!!  We'll probably take a day trip to the Hatteras Light and then a ferry ride down to Ocracoke.   I think Aidan will like it.  In fact, he woke up the other morning very grumpy because he had been dreaming he was at the beach.  Apparantly, the dream was so real that he really thought he was there!!

But, in the meantime, we still have hockey season to finish--ours with Mini Mites, which will then be followed by the Spring League, which will take us to June!!; and the NHL season--go Caps!!  You can do it!!  Only one point out of the Playoffs!!!  And only two points out of the Division lead!!  You can get there tonight!!!  And Aidan, the ever fun loving hocky guy he is, is rooting for the Caps, Blackhawks, and the Red Wings!!!  Although his messages sometimes get a little mixed with his attire. . .

February is such a strange month.  Especially this year.  It's the longest short month ever. . .and we've been having such nice spring like weather.  But, we still have a long way to go until spring!!  And now we're expecting snow tomorrow.  Boo!!  Hiss!!! 

But, February is also one of my favorite months.  It was on February 29th that we got the call to come back for Court for Aidan. . .February 29th. . .which we have again this year.  One of my favorite days ever!!!

But, we have a lot planned today:  go to the bank and set up a new account and set direct deposit to new account and Aidan's savings; order new wood floor for family room!!!; possibly get to the mall to buy some spring clothes for Aidan; get to the grocery store and to a fabric store--need patches for Aidan's jeans again; and then hopefully clean the basement Rec Room, which is wrecked again!!  And the Caps play again tonight. . .then tomorrow, we don't really have plans.  If the roads aren't bad, I'll take Aidan to the Ice House in the afternoon to work on edges and turns.  Monday we have a birthday party and then I'm taking Aidan to see Arriety, a new movie that is out.  Whew!! 

And so, I must get crackin' if I want to get all this done!!  Have a great day!!  May your Spring be soon to arrive.

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Last weekend before the Hockey Skills class, Coach Joe told me Aidan needs new shorts.  His are too short.  So, we are ordering the next size up. . .and because they are on sale, we're ordering the size after that too!  Aidan is growing like crazy.  Might as well be prepared!  We also ordered the next size up for the spine and shoulder pads (his current ones just barely fit over his head) and a new set of elbow pads that extend down his forearm more.  We'll get new knee/shin pads before next fall. . .probably about the same time as new skates!  I was told I didn't have to worry about getting new skates until Aidan complains that his toes hurt.  Whew!  That's an $85. to $100. savings!. . .for a little bit, anyways!

Aidan did really really well during his hockey skills class.  I'm always so proud and amazed at how he does as well or better than most of the boys out there.  Remember, aside from Aidan, there are only a couple of children who are only 6.  The class is for 7-13 year olds.  I always have to laugh, because, after the skills portion is done, they will split the boys into two groups to scrimage.  10-13 year olds on one side of the rink and the 7-9 year olds on the other.  Aidan will typically stand there and I will have to yell over the glass that he is to go with the 7-9 year olds.  I asked him last Saturday what happened and he said, "But, Mama.  They didn't call my age!  I'm only 5!"  Yes, you are sweetie.  Mama's sorry!!

Only 5 he may be, but he scored two goals against those bigger boys!!  One was so good that the head Coach, Coach Rob came over and spent some time showing Aidan how to celebrate his goal with fist pumping and everything.  Pretty funny!!

I got video of Aidan playing last weekend.  I'll try to get that uploaded soon.

At the end, after Mini Mites were over, we were getting the gear off and restowed in the bag when Coach Joe cambe back and was telling me about how he was helping out with the Mites so he wouldn't be at Thursday Free Skate for a while.  I told him I thought we were going to switch to Sunday afternoon because Thursday has gotten too crowded.  I also said something about keeping Aidan in Mini Mites through the summer and then we'll see if he is ready for Mites next fall.  I was told Aidan is ready now for Mites and that he is every bit as good, or better, as those boys.  Hmmm.  Well.  Next Fall. . .

No hockey this weekend (other than watching the Caps play. . .and win, please!).  So, we'll go to Free skate on Sunday and then, three day weekend!!!  Woo Hoo!!!  So, I'm hoping to take Aidan to a movie on Monday.  But, first, tomorrow is Parents Night Out!!!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Mundane, but Trying to Find the Excitement!!

Last Saturday we bought Aidan a new Hockey bag.  One with wheels.  So he can manage his own equipment.  Well, it works in theory!  Anyways, the bag is huge!  All of his pads, his helmet, gloves, jerseys, tights, hockey shorts, and his skates all fit in there.  Daddy's skates fit in there too.  But, when I asked if I could put my skates in there, here is the response:  "No, Mama.  Finger skates don't go in a Hockey bag!!!"  Okay.  So, no Finger skates!  : )

Speaking of hockey, love how the Caps are playing lately!  The blanked Florida on Tuesday, but got beaten last night by Winnepeg in a shoot out. . .great game though!  Tough playing a bouncing puck, otherwise they would have won it in regulation.

Also on hockey, and in the interest of mixing things up a bit, I found some pasta with hockey shapes.  So, the other night I cooked some up and mixed it with some of my homemade spaghetti sauce, put it into a caserole dish, sprinkled cheese on top and then baked it for a half an hour.  Sounded and looked kind of strange, but pretty good!  Think we'll do it again.  Can you see the pasta hockey player on top??

Trying to find things to do during these waning days of winter has been a bit of a stretch.  Fortunately, Santa brought a few Lego projects.  So, we've been working on Space City and the Space Shuttle.  Pretty cool!!

When the boys aren't working on Legos, this is how they look:
Mario Brothers has control of them. . .I could run around the house making all kinds of noise and they wouldn't notice when the Mario Brothers Wii is on!!

Aidan's health this winter has been awesome!  (knock on wood)  But, the other night, I heard him snoring.  In the morning I checked out his throat and, sure enough, his tonsils looked huge!  So, I took him to the doctor to get checked.  Although one of the tonsils was so big it was pushing that thing that hangs down over, the doctor said he was fine.  She didn't swab his throat or anything and said he was probably fighting something and to just keep an eye on him.  If the tonsils don't go down and he starts feeling bad, then we'll see.  Okay.  Mama was just checking to be sure, okay?  Can't be too careful!  : )

We've been working on trying to find a beach house for this summer.  We're planning our vacation for the week of Fourth of July--ready to NOT be at the house everyone wants to come to for fireworks--Hopefully, we'll find THE house this weekend.  Meanwhile, we continue to take Aidan to the Ice House for Free Skate.  We work on his backward skating, speed and turns wheil there.  But, last night was a bit crowded!!  Might have to switch to Sunday afternoons.  But, here are a few cute shots I was able to get while on the ice. . . without falling, I might add!!

Aidan is continuing to do well in school.  However, homework has become a challenge.  Not to actually do it, but the part where we actually start it!  These last two weeks I let him talk me into letting him play first.  Big mistake!!  We were scrambling on Wednesday night to finish both weeks--homework is due on Thursday.  This Mama can't handle that stress so we're going back to working on it first thing on Monday night and Tuesday morning.

Aidan has also continued to have issues with not paying attention.  We had a note home in his backpack this week that he hadn't been paying attention during Guidance.  I want him to feel he can tell me anything, so I asked him how his day went.  When he didn't offer up the about getting in trouble, I asked him if they had Guidance that day.  When he said yes, I asked him how it went.  Then he told me what happened--he hadn't been paying attention and then he answered the questions wrong.  Ahhh. . .so I talked to him about paying attention and then I told him how proud I was that he had told me the truth about it.  Since then, when I drop him off, I tell him to always listen and pay attention.  Hopefully, positive reinforcement will do the trick! 

That's about it from this boring family!  We really got nothin'!!  Hopefully, things will shake up a bit soon.

Monday, February 6, 2012

We need to find some fun times!

Well, we had a little excitement over the weekend. . .we had some snow!  It had been sunny but chilly when we went to the Ice House on Saturday for Aidan's skills class and then Mini Mites.  During the two and half hours we were there I could see that it was getting steadily darker and darker.  By the time we came out, it was raining really hard and the temperature was in the low forties.  We drove home and by the time we got to Goose Creek, about half way, it was rain and snow mixed.  Back in Leesburg, it was all snow and it was accumulating on the grass and parked cars.  Our friends who were coming for pizza and Wii cancelled (the live up across from Mt. Weather) and the roads, by then, were getting icy.  So, we went out for a quick bite and then came home and watched Miracle (again!).  It was a nice quiet evening.

We were sorry to have missed the Caps shut out win over Montreal, but we did get to watch Aidan win several face offs against boys in the 7-9 year old range in his skills class and then he scored a couple of times during Mini Mites!!!  Woo Hoo!!!  Now to work on his power turns some more. . .

Aidan has decided to have his birthday party at the Ice House again--totally his choice!!  But, we're going to limit the numbers to 12 boys this year.  Last years 25 was a bit much--space, noise and expense!  But we still have a couple of months to get the numbers nailed down.

Yesterday, one of Aidan's school friends came over for a play date.  The boys seemed to have a great time.  And because he actually lives in our neighborhood, we'll be able to go to the pool together this summer!  Yeah!!  I'm so glad Aidan has such a good friend and I'm hoping we'll be able to get the boys together more.

We really have nothing going on in the near future.  Just hanging out, working, going to school and hockey.  Nothing exciting at all.  I need to remedy that!  But, in the meantime, here are some pictures from the Monster Jam that Pat and Aidan went to last week!

And so, we are now officially in the search of fun things to do!

PS  My mom seems to be doing pretty good following her hip replacement surgery.  She went home on Saturday and has been moving about, with a walker, pretty well.  She even went to the grocery store yesterday with my sister!  Amy will be there until Wednesday and mom should be able to do more, by then, on her own. 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Here we Go Again!

It's six o'clock here in Punxatawny. . .and it's Groundhog Day!!!!!!!

Yep, that's how things feel these days.  Just like that movie.  I wake up.  I run.  I make two lunches and a snack.  I shower and get ready for work, wake Aidan up and get him dressed/fed and off to school.  Go to work.  Come home.  Fix dinner/do laundry/fix bedtime snack/read to Aidan/go to bed. . .and then the alarm goes off again and it's, in the words of Mario, Here we go again!

I need to mix things up a bit. . .so, last night I started our taxes.  Basically finished them too!  All I need is the tax ID number for Winwood--can't seem to find it in my taxes from last year. . .I'll get that today and then finish those up tonight after I get my hair cut and while the boys go skating.

Friends are coming for Pizza and Wii on Saturday after Aidan's Mini Mites and then on Sunday Aidan has a playdate--not sure yet what we'll do, but Aidan will have fun!

Aidan's Second Quarter Report Card came yesterday.  He is doing really well.  He is all E's (Exceeds) or M's (Meets) on the requirements.  He only had one N (Needs Improvement) and that was not being a distraction to others--apparantly he has a hard time sitting still during Circle Time.  We'll work on that.  Basically, I'm very pround of his progress at school.  I knew he was a smarty pants!!

And so, we're in the Winter Doldrums.  It's February 2nd: too early to really Think Spring although we've had a warmish winter; and there's really nothing fun on the near horizon--Easter and Spring Break are still a couple of months away!  So, we need to find some fun things to do. . .any suggestions???

On other, less good news, my mom had to have hip replacement surgery yesterday.  It went well and she will be in the hospital for a few days.  I spoke to her breifly last night and she sounded fine.  She won't be getting out of bed to walk until later today because her bones are pretty brittle from all of the Chemotherapy and Radiation she had when her cancer was initally treated.

And, my Grandfather is actively dying.  That sounds horrible, I know, but really it's not.  He's almost 96 and he is ready to go be with my Grandmother.  He talks about wanting to see her again all the time!  So, I pray he passes peacefully.

And that's it.  Nothing big, new or exciting.  Just life as it happens in our neck of the woods.  Hopefully, next time I'll have something fun to say and some cool pictures to share!

Happy Groundhog Day!  May your Spring come early!!