Friday, September 10, 2010

Best Intentions

I actually do think about updating the blog.
But then again I also think about abdominoplasty and if eating only ice cream would constitute a a liquid diet, not to mention practical things like taking a shower AND shaving my legs, or worldly things like eating Thai food. See. I'm a dreamer.
But occasionally I do put thoughts into action. Here is proof. A blog I started in June. Amazingly, even reading it now seems like it was written a hundred years ago. Callan's vocabulary has changed so much even in those three short months. Further proof that every second counts.

My Left Foot
What comes after ambidextrous? Is there a superdextrious? Callan and I were reading one of his favorite books a few weeks ago. It’s a Richard Scary book that has page after page of cars and trucks and planes…pickle trucks, cars shaped like hot dogs, all driven by cats and dogs. It’s a feast for the imagination. Even better that the content is the fact that it was a gift from Nini. So we “read” the book by talking about what is on each page and we ask him where’s the cherry picker? Where’s the dump truck? So the other evening while we were enjoying our book and I began to ask him where is the ice cream truck? He started pointing. With his feet. Cause that’s how we roll.

What name is?
Our boy is curious!!! He loves to know who people are and what they are doing. He loves to ask What Girl name is? When we go to the store, What guys name is? When we see a truck like Uncle GaGa’s “what gaga doing? Or the question he can ask a million times a day and never seems to get tired of hearing the answer to, What Moxie doing? Crazy Moxie dog is a hit at our house We love to know where he is and what he’s doing. If his activities are even one tenth as elaborate as the stories we tell, he’s a heck of a luck dog!

Go Outside!

Usually the second phrase out of Callan’s mouth every morning is ----“Nice day ! Go outside!” He cant’t seem to get enough of being outside. He will refuse breakfast in favor of getting out there and checking out his golf clubs or riding his bike or darn near anything just let him outside! And if you think going outside is important, staying outside is even MORE important. Coming inside is a punishment worse than death…there is lots of crying or bribing --- and sometimes I do both. : )

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Callan--2 years!

Callan's second birthday was fabulous! We celebrated with our family and Callan was absolutely thrilled to see everyone and in love with every generous gift he received...he was quite the charmer.

Of course,

above all else...

he loved the CAKE!

(evidence attached.)

Other 2-year milestones that we achieved that week:

  • Using "I" instead of Callan. Callan wants to golfing became I WANT to go golfing. What a big guy!

  • Biting. Ugh. I think (fingers crossed) that we have since outgrown this...but Callan went through a bit of a biting spell. Thankfully (for me) a close eye and repeated time outs helped squelch it....I was fearing the pound of flesh approach. (if any of Callan's victims are reading this--we really are so, so sorry!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And also, if you are a victim and are reading this---congrats on being a two year old who is literate.)

  • Repeating/memory. This guy's got a memory like an elephant! Don't make up any details to answer a why question if you aren't going to be able to remember what you made up. And don't tell him some one's name if you aren't going to recall it yourself. Seriously. One of our biggest issues of confusion is which Bob we are talking about...Fireman Bob, Bed Salesman Bob, or Appliance repair Bob. All people we have met and Callan has a curiosity about.

Our guy is just growing and growing and growing. I can't believe what an amazing two years it has been. Eric and I feel so lucky to have Callan in our family, and unbelievably fortunate that we get to see him discover so many new things every day. He is kind and compassionate, sweet and funny. And, of course, he even has a bit of an arnery streak in him. He is a little bit daring and incredibly brave. I just love him to pieces. Every day I think how incredible it is to see those big eyes look back at me when I say I love you, not to mention the fabulous feeling of having those slightly chubby little fingers pat your back as they wrap around your back in a much needed hug. AH, love!


I've been a little busy.
You may ask "Too busy to record the precious memories of your children, Joslynn???"
not that busy I guess. But let us hope that in the absence of immediate recording, there is richness of story. Or something. Let's hope I remember 50% of what happened 50% correctly...and that will be a start!
You might have heard....
since our last update we have a TWO YEAR old! and a new baby girl. So see--we have been busy!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Best Mother's Day Gift EVER!

Ok. First, I know I have a lot to catch up on! I will! I will! I will!
But first, can I just tell you about the amazing thing that happened on Friday???? Callan and I were in the kitchen working on our waffle dinner and he put his little hand on my back, gave me a pat and said "love you mama." I cried on the spot. Tears in the waffle batter. That was the first time he has ever told me he loves me w/out being prompted (or begged.:) I proceeded to reward him by allowing him to eat whipped cream on his waffles. Sweets for my little sweetie. Aw.
Luckiest girl alive=me! :)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Golf Fever

Callan will be the first to tell you ----he's got the golf fever! It's an epidemic.


We had a great weekend, Ethan came to visit us! Callan enjoyed getting to see Ethan. Although he had some important advice to impart: NOMOKING Uncle Ethan! (No smoking Uncle Ethan!)

We also got to see Grant and Jo and spend time with NiNi and Papa! We capped off the weekend with a barbecue at Kimmy's house. Phew! Just typing it makes me tired!

*$#)@ DOG.

Grrr. There has been a lot of growling going on lately. It is not the dog growling at me, but me growling at the DOG.

Vegas has been trying my patience lately. It seems as though every time I turn around he has a new little shenanigan waiting for me.

Two nights ago I awoke in the middle of the night to a very strong smell. I was convinced (my imagination is super active at 3:30 a.m.) that I smelled an electrical fire. I sprang out of bed and was setting about to sniff out the problem and feel every cord in the house to make sure none of them were hot. Luckily, I was distracted by a pillow that had fallen on the floor. A pillow with a large mysterious spot on it. A wet spot. A freakin' dog pee spot. Grrrr. I think Vegas was lucky the Humane Society isn't open at 3:30. I put him in his kennel and went back to our room. Where I could then hear him trying to dig through the plastic bottom to China. So then I got up and put his kennel in the garage. Eric let him out in the morning or he may still be in there if it were up to me.

I know that might not seem like enough to set a person off. Even a person with swollen ankles and extra hormones. But perhaps this next story will help you see where I am coming from.

So last week, Eric had to go to work early in the morning. This left Callan and I to our routine...or a variation thereof. Callan hopped in the shower with me. After our shower Callan asked for a diaper reprieve. It feels like a small thing to give. A few minutes with out a diaper. I can handle it. Well, most of the time I can handle it. This particular morning in the blink of an eye we had a giant disgaster. (Disgusting Disaster) I will spare you the details. Just know it had lots to do with not having a diaper on and a dog who is undiscriminating about what he eats. Thank god my morning sickness is over or that would have set me about having a whole new problem on top of what I already had to deal with.

So see what I mean?

Vegas started it.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Today is Brought to you by the Letter "B"

Sometimes things that Callan says just get stuck in my head. This week he has been pronouncing all his B words with "BE" instead of bu for the sound...resulting in cute quips such as

BE nockles (binoculars)
BE nanas

It makes me smile just thinking about it.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Something Old,Something New, Something Borrowed, and something Bunnied.

What a fun and busy weekend we had! Eric's niece Stephanie got married on Saturday. Not only did she manage to find herself a super wonderful husband, she also scored an extremely handsome ring bearer. Although not an inactive one. Fortunately---Callan was the only one running. Tuxedos are the new workout wear. Sweatpants are so last year. My pictures turned out kind of horribly but not for lack of trying. I am hoping Beth can bail me out as I am sure her trained eye got lots of good ones! (HAPPY Birthday Beth!!!!!)

We had so much fun getting to see everyone. Callan loves all his cousins! Christine was back in town to be the MOH, it was great to see her! And Callan has been talking about Ryan, Luke and Rachael since last time we saw them--counting the days until we would see them again. Usually once he sees them he prefers to just kind of watch them instead of actually play with them, he gets a little shy but he warms up quickly and was eating chocolate out of their hands in no time! ; ) Callan had lots of fun and was provided with endless candy, cookies, chips and pop in order to help smooth the bumps of a weekend that doesn't exactly follow his normal schedule. He was a trooper! I think he would probably tell you the highlight of the weekend was that he learned to use a pop machine (not to mention, was allowed to drink pop). He did lots of funny things...two of which were launch the RB pillow across the alter during the rehearsal and yell "THROW IT!" and then when we were at the reception waiting in line for some roast beef, he put his hand squarely on the shoulder of the lady in front of us, gave her a small shove and yelled "GO!" I guess he really, really wanted some beef. Luckily she was a good sport and found the humor in this!

As for Easter, it was definitely our second tier event. We still managed to find time for some serious egg hunting. Luckily The Bunny (TB) came to Nini and Papa's house early so we could have a practice run on Saturday morning. Callan found a garden shovel and a rake immediately and couldn't be bothered to put them down--no matter what was inside the eggs. The only way he would pick up the eggs was if he could scoop them onto his shovel with his rake. He did allow my dad to feed him the occasional M&M or gummy---but only if he could keep digging! One track mind, that guy! By the time TB got to our place on Sunday morning Callan was mildly amused by some of the offerings but in large part 'over it' I think we had too much excitement already---TB couldn't compete. Although I did find out that the practice hunt helped us hone our skills as our Sunday evening egg hunt with the neighbors went much better---Callan was running around scooping them up like a pro.

So that was our weekend. Looking forward to a little slower pace next weekend when we get a visit from Uncle Ethan!

More One Peas.

This is Callan's new way of asking for more...of anything (if you are into ironic phonics, anything but peas...he never asks for more of those). Instead of more of that please, more one peas. His other slightly backwards phrase of the moment is 'mama hold you' instead of 'mama hold me'. It would figure world's sweetest boy has world's sweetest phrasing. What a guy!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


I have been brewing lately. A fine mix of guilt made with equal parts shame, laziness and craziness. The shame comes from knowing I should be doing more: more documenting of Callan’s milestones, more time savoring my pregnancy, more time trying to remember the wife/daughter/sister/friend part of the equation that is somehow supposed to factor into a ‘balance.’ The laziness is exasperated my tiredness and that spirals into the craziness where I begin to beat myself up about all of the above. I need to whip myself into shape—if not physically (let’s face it that is totally out of the question for the time being) mentally. I need to make myself do some more! More anything at this point (besides laziness and craziness) would probably be acceptable. I think my fear will help me do better…I am so afraid of losing/forgetting all the amazing things that Callan has been doing that I am making myself promise to do a better job of recording. If not here, then somewhere!!! Also on this list is doing a better job of backing up all our pictures. Taking videos. See lots to do. So enough wallowing already. I resolve to do better. Not perfect, just better. Better? I am once again having this talk with myself while on an airplane back to Omaha. Which is great, because I can do something about it. Goodbye Phoenix, hello productivity! Speaking of my trip--this is the first time that Callan said "uv ooo mama" (love you mama!) to me on the phone. Heart-melting!!!!!!

Callan has never met a tool he didn’t like. Kitchen tools, vacuum attachments, screwdrivers, nail clippers---if it is a tool of any type that guy is into it. My parents came over a few weeks ago to help fix the rocker they are letting us borrow. My dad brought a saw horse, a work table, a bucket of tools and handful of clamps. You would have thought he was unloading Disneyland out of his truck. Callan was THRILLED! He stayed outside for three hours going from tool to tool to tool. Clamping things, examining things, digging things, dropping things, hammering things. I think the only person happier than Callan was Papa Mike!

Construction Zone
Eric and I took Callan to a new exhibit at the Children’s museum: Construction Zone. He was so excited to discover an area that had a rope maze (he loves ropes) but not nearly as excited as he was to discover a small play screwdriver in the ‘gravel pit.’ Of all the things we saw and did none were more fascinating that Callan seeing a kid who had his face painted like Spiderman. He was mesmerized! Callan was following him around trying to get in front of him to look at (and I imagine touch if given a chance) his face.

Sweet Trophies
Q: What’s better than a trophy?
A: A trophy filled with CANDY!
Callan completed another session of swimming lessons. They give all the kids a small trophy filled with gold. I mean M&Ms. Pools, candy and trophies…life is good!

Ah manners. We started with the easy, please. Now onto the harder, thanks. We’ve been practicing and practicing our ‘magic’ words and Callan has definitely gotten the hang of it.
Me: OK Callan, let’s go change your diapers!
Callan: Noanks. (no thanks)
Me: Callan, would you like some vegetables?
Callan: Noanks.
Me: Ok, time to go night-night/take a bath/inside/home.
Callan: NOANKS mama.
I find myself saying “what nice manners! BUT…” a lot. I mean a lot.

Sensitivity Training
It may be time to invoke some HR type regulations around our house. I may conduct an at home power point presentation about sensitivity in the home. The men in my life have a way with words. And while one of them is too little to know any better…the other one should!!!!! And similarly, only one story is worth repeating!
Last week I perched myself on the edge of our tub to put on my socks. Perching a wobbly over weight pregnant butt on the narrow edge of a ledge is no easy task. I got my socks on but I turned on the water in the process. Callan was watching me and in my usual narrating way I said “Oh no! Mama turned on the water with her big bottom!” You see the mistake, right? If not, I’ve been doing a LOT of things in the last week to the melodious sound of “BIG bottom!” “Mama’s big BOTTOM!” Hmm. I think for my future sanity and vanity I will start to narrate self affirmations. Soon Callan Smalley will be saying: Mama is good enough, smart enough and dog gone it, people like her.

According to the calendar, spring is here. That is all the news Eric needs to take to the golf course. After a long winter of longing looks out the back door, he is back on the course. And he is not alone! Eric’s latest golf companion is Callan! He took him out for his first nine holes and made it through seven. I was skeptical of this idea---thinking Callan was too young, that it is too dangerous—all of my normal dream crushing safety mother concerns. Eric was convinced and took him out. From the sounds of it the experience was similar to what I expected would be best case scenario, and apparently was no where near the range of possibilities that Eric had considered. Callan happily rode along in the cart, but wanted to ‘de plane’ every time Eric did, and wanted to do so with a club in hand. I think Eric envisioned Callan sitting happily in the cart waiting while Eric took his shot. (sometimes I think he takes psychotropics.) Eric was thrilled it lasted as long as it did and was beaming a little bit when he reported all the attention that Callan received from the other golfers or “golf guys” as Callan calls them. Unfortunately the round ended on a sour note when Callan had a small melt down when the guys from the clubhouse took Eric’s clubs to storage. He did NOT want them to take away his dad’s clubs. Luckily, he has since recovered. Eric thinks the next outing would be better if it were mother supervised (read: restrained). Time will tell!!!

Baby Sister

Callan was right! In fact; Callan, Eric and the Chinese Birth Chart were right. We are expecting a new baby girl in late July. Which means we have some prep work to do! It will be an adjustment for all of us, but very exciting. I think Eric is starting to get his arms around the idea. Although the first time I brought home a little pink outfit he said “that is weird.” When I asked what, he said it seemed weird to have baby girl clothes in the house instead of boy clothes. Better get used to it, and fast!!!

Cirque de suck

I feel it necessary to preface this post with the disclamer that I had never been to a circus. In my mind it was a glorious softly lit place full of sequined acrobats, clowns with seltzer bottles, non-stop cotton candy and the wafting and delicous scent of hotdogs. This is a sign I have seen too much TV in my life. The circus, or at least the Shriner's circus is none of those things. Callan and I went with my friend Michaella and her daughter to have a fun little circus time. Wow wow wow. The great news is the company was good---we had fun with Michaella and Ellie! The bad news is give me a flash light, a disco ball, a hula hoop and Vegas and I could put on a better show in our basement. You know it is bad when Callan keeps alternating between asking to go home and asking to go night-night. Whoops. Lesson learned. No more circus!

here are the posts I wrote on February 16, 2010 but never got around to actually posting.

Time Out!
Well, it appears as though Callan has a healthy sense of adventure and perhaps a blatant disregard for authority. I wonder who he gets that from? (Since we all know it clearly isn’t me!) Callan started getting ‘time outs’ several months ago—perhaps shortly before Christmas (what a present, eh?) or so. Anyway, I’m not sure Eric nor I realized how consistent we’d been (yay us) nor how regular (boo) until last week. I was working in the kitchen and Eric was watching TV in the other room. I looked over to see Callan reaching up on his tip toes to touch the television. I reminded him that we don’t touch the TV. He lowered himself and glanced over his shoulder at me. I assume now that it was to gauge my position and distance. He promptly turned back around, raised up on his tip toes and craned those little arms overhead to try again. This time Eric intervened, warning him with a time out. Callan looked over his shoulder, smiled, and reached right on back up. Just as Eric was getting of the couch to talk to Callan and take him to time out, Callan turned around, walked over to the fireplace (the timeout spot) and sat down himself. Eric and I were stunned! Eric told him he needed to sit there until he told him he could get up. About 90 seconds into this self administered time out, Callan blurts out “Sorry!” The magic word that releases him from the time out prison. Does this kid have it down, or what? He obviously calculated his odds on this and decided a little handful of TV would be worth a few minutes on the fp. Oh what a wonder to watch that little mind work!

Last weekend’s swimming lesson brought us a few new things—one a delectable new treat for Callan, two his first use of a three syllable word, and three the need for cleaning wipes moist enough to remove shellac from toddler fingers. I imagine you can string this together yourself, but indulge me. So last weekend was probably like our 20th swimming lesson. Every Saturday we walk by the same green frog bucket on the entry desk twice—once on our way in, and once on our way out. Callan has never seen anyone take anything out of it, nor has he shown any real interest in it. Until this week. On our way out the door Callan reached up to the counter, grabbed the bucket, peered inside and declared “candy!” It was a bucket full of SafeT pops. How he knew those were candy I have no idea…I guess instinct is a strong thing! Anyway, we decided that he could have one, and as soon as we got him strapped in his car seat and handed him the all powerful pop, he immediately tried to bite into it. Which didn’t work out very well. Eric told him not to bite it, it would hurt his teeth. Less than five seconds later I turn around and he has his tongue hanging out of his mouth, licking the lolli like crazy. I guess some things you just don’t need instructions for. He heard us call it a lollipop and the whole way home (between licks) he was repeating LoLLY pop. lollyPOP. Lowwy Pop. I guess some things are just worth working on! When we got home I realized the other consequence of a lowwipop, besides tooth decay and poor nutrition….shellac. Toddler slobber + grape Safety pop= Strongest adhesive in the universe. Take note 3M.

I am currently sitting on an airplane returning to Omaha from Phoenix. I hate being without my boys, but if I must be lonely, I do prefer to be lonely and warm. Although after calling home my second night away I would have traded all the sun in the universe to be able to blink my eyes and be home. There is just something about hearing that sweet little voice on the other end of the phone that makes you realize you really don’t care about having a car or a house or clothes or health insurance, all you want is to be there right at that moment, kissing that downy blonde head and tickling that little belly. However, Eric is a fan of cars, houses, insurance and clothing. So here we are. Anyway, when I called home Eric had Callan on speaker phone so I got to hear him ‘reading’ his truck book to me. Army Truck. Pickle Truck. Painter Guy. Ladder. Up up up, down down down. Blower. Daddy. Hi. It may not have been “I love you and I miss you mommy” but it sure did have the same effect.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


OK, so as you just read…there is a new baby on their way to our cozy little home! We were surprised and excited! I personally was relieved to learn that my symptoms of headache, nausea and exhaustion were not a brain tumor but instead the result of my once- again –proven- atrocious -math skills. As my Dr. told me, “blessed be those who practice natural family planning as they shall be called parents.” Touche, Dr. N. touché.
Anywho. As the shock became excitement and the nausea became vomiting, we were so pleased to find out that there is one (yes, only one!!!!) new little baby on their way to our house. We have shown Callan the picture of the ultrasound and told him he is going to have a brother or a sister. On every occasion that we discuss this, he responds with “Sisser.” So we shall see. If he is right, I think we may have family casino day and take that kid to the roulette table. He might not know his numbers from 1-36, but he sure does know his colors---let it ride on red!
But I digress. Another part of the experience we are sharing with Callan is letting him know where the baby is. As soon as I told him that the baby was in my tummy. He turned around, looked at me, put his hand on my tummy and said “OPEN.” When I laughed, he said, “Please.” Is that too sweet or what? So I had to explain to him that the baby was very very tiny (even though mommy is already very very big) and that he or she had to grow big, bigger, biggest before they were able to come out and meet him. Since Callan knows all about doors and knocking to gain entry/exit, I told him the baby would start knocking when they were ready. I have a feeling that explanation could backfire on me. Time will tell.
Callan should be a big brother on or around July 22. We will find out brother or sisser status in March I think. Stay tuned!

Catch up!

OK. The list of excuses is long. Too long. My usual blog time is in the evening after I put Callan to bed. But trouble is, I’ve been putting myself to bed at the same time as Callan! I have been VERY tired as of late---first trimester tired. But we’ll be on to greener pastures soon, I know it!
ANYWHO. I know you didn’t come---if anyone is still checking on us---to read about me and my tiredness. How about instead, a few fun Callan stories? That I can deliver!
So as you can imagine, our little genius is talking and learning at warp speed. He is very much into showing off his smarts by ID’ing everything in sight! GUY! GIRL! KID! HAT! DOGGIE! CAR! TRUCK! APPLE! This happens at home, in the car, in the store—he’s trying out those newfound communication skills and loving people’s responses. So he and I were at our bi annual Whole Foods luncheon a few weeks ago and he was yelling out all his words as we waited for our lunch. Pizza! Guy! Well….it was a pizza girl. But in Callan’s defense an honest mistake if you know what I mean. So that evening Eric and I thought we would work on our Guy/Girl differences by conducting a short quiz.
E/J: What’s Daddy?
E/J: What is Calissa?
E/J: What is NiNI?
E/J: What is Mommy?
E/J: What is Callan?
Ooooo we laughed! Mr. Vocabulary has also taken very quickly to people’s names---he’s moved from MaMa Dada to Mommy and Daddy, and knows that Grandma and Nini are the same person. He is also particularly fond of calling my dad “Mike” which is also pretty hilarious. He is big on commands---ie. COME! Gaga—COME! Which means, please call my Uncle Grant and tell him to come over. That or please tell me a story about the last time Uncle Grant came to visit. He is really quite entertaining these days.
In fact, he has even learned the power of communication for negotiation. We are really trying hard to work towards potty training. I know in some ways the effort might be futile as we will expect some “regression” when the new baby arrives---but it can’t hurt to try. However, it can be messy. So the other night I told Callan about his potty reward---M&Ms! He said “Candy?!” to which I replied, “Yes! If you go PP on the potty, you can have TWO M&Ms!” Callan looked at me, tilted his head and said, “Three.” I don’t even know if he is sure what that means---but it worked. I caved in---even though the closest we got to the potty was the carpet in front of the bathroom. Baby steps, right?
He is also using communication as imitation. After hearing Eric tell me to drive carefully when I leave in the morning---which is really Eric’s way of saying “FTLOG Joslynn, could you please not run over the ice bank/curb/mailbox today. Please.” But when Callan repeats “Careful!” as he waves to me---it sounds so much sweeter than Eric’s admonishment I can’t help but smile. In fact it makes me so happy I even save my glare/eye roll/finger for Eric until I am safely in the garage. Ah love!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010