Thursday, February 26, 2009

Hunter-the big 5...

Hunter is now 5 months old...how quickly time flies by.
Just an update on his most recent adventures and achievements:
Stayed for the first time in a house that wasn't his (Sheboygan) and didn't do well with it!
Wore his first swim suit and experienced the pool two times. Loving it the second time, when the water was a little warmer.
Rolls from front and back and back to front.
Continues to love the bumbo chair.
Spits up more than most normal children.
Still drinks great from a bottle.
Goes to bed at 6:30. Yeah!!
Adores his older sister and is easily entertained by her.
Doesn't sleep great during the day, but during the night only wakes up 2 times. We love improvement in this area!
Had his first taste of real food, yogurt, and wanted nothing more to do with it.
Enjoys standing up and jumping up and down.
Loves piano music. Whenever he gets upset, I sit down at the piano and play some tunes and he sits quietly.
Enjoys baby Einstein.
His fussiest time is from 4pm to 6:30, hopefully he'll get over that soon.
He loves kicking his legs, I will wake up to the sound of him kicking his legs in his bed, which means he usually kicks out of his pajamas.
Uses his pacifier as a toy, always playing with it.
He is a smiley baby, my favorite thing to do is get him out of bed when he's all smiles.
Puts up with Hallie smashing his face, pulling is legs, bending his fingers. He's such a good sport. And we love him all so dearly!

Here's to another great month!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Big "O" time...

I had the opportunity to go to the Oprah show with some friends. Thank you Linda for scoring last minute reservations. I attended a special two filming session about a year and a half ago, the only downfall was the topic...menopause. Not something I was totally interested in. So I was so excited to be able to go again and pray that it wasn't on the topic of Menopause again!!

It was an early taping which meant we had to be to the studio by 7:00. Making the two drive from Milwaukee that morning was not going to be pretty. So, Linda arranged for a Hotel the night before. We each put our kids to sleep and left town. That was the first time I've ever stayed the night from Hunter which was harder than I thought it was going be. That being said, I slept like a baby and it was wonderful!

{Sidenote} We pulled up to our hotel and it looked so familiar, yet I couldn't put my finger on it.
Once we were checking in I realized that I had stayed in that hotel years ago when I was serving as a national officer for Business Professionals of America. I instantly flashed back. I could remember where certain meetings were held, the exact elevator that took us to our "club room". I remembered every detail about the trip. The rain, the constant rain. The other national officers. Having my parents there as we conducted the national convention. Milkshakes from Hard Rock, yes multiple milkshakes. The sweet suite we were hooked up with. And the absolutely hideous uniforms they made us wear. We even had to travel in those blasted uniforms which never failing pegged us as flight attendants. Which of course led to many people asking us for directions. I'm sure we confused a lot of people as we got a kick out of giving random directions in airports we had never stepped foot in!

Back to Oprah:
We showed up to the studio in plenty of time and we waited for what seemed like forever. We were then seated in the studio with some fabulous seats. Our party was split up, as there was an aisle that separated us, but I will take that any day if I can sit on the second row, and Linda was even on the front row. I'm positive she made it on television, she had to of. After getting situated they informed us the topic: The Octuplets grandfather speaking out for the first time, with Dr. Oz to weigh in on the issue as well.

I don't traditionally share my opinions on such topics - but seeing as though it makes my Oprah experience what it is, I thought I'd share...if you disagree, that's your right.

I was already intrigued. I have a strong opinion on the topic so already I knew it was going to be better than the menopause show. Oprah comes out in all her glory, barefoot. Makes herself comfortable. Reads the first couple lines of the prompter. And immediately starts the show. If any of you think the mother of the octuplets is a little crazy, the apple didn't fall far from the tree. Her father was a little out there as well. Thick accent, hard to understand. I found myself straining just to make out what he was saying.

His thick accent and scattered thoughts made it difficult to understand the message he was trying to get across. I'm still confused as to if he thinks his daughter is crazy and needs to be mentally checked out, or supports her decision because she's a bright girl. Bright...not the word I would use to describe a single mother of fourteen who chose to do this because it had always been her "dream" to be a mother. (Exact quote from a clip we were shown.) That dream is fulfilled with two kids, which in and of itself as a single, non-working mother would be difficult. Fourteen seems obsessive. Clearly you know where I stand on the issue. It was indeed an interesting show and Dr. Oz brought up many points I completely agreed with.

Many in the audience wanted to place blame on the doctor, not the mother. Although valid, it becomes too easy to push blame places. When do we come to the point where we accept our decisions and the consequences that come with them? The father wants everyone to stop punishing his daughter and was so upset that the doctor would do this procedure, but there's two sides to the coin, his daughter requested it.

Although my opinions on the situation didn't change from listening to her father, Oprah, or Dr. Oz, I left with a deeper concern for those poor children. As bad of a decision as it was for the mother to make, she now has 14 children who will suffer the consequences of that decision. My heart goes out to them and I pray the mother has the decency and common sense to start focusing on those children and do what's best for them. Even if that means giving those children a better life through adoption. Only time will tell...

One of my favorite things about this taping was the intensity of the audience. Before Oprah even entered the studio, the topic had been presented and the opinions of the audience were already being shared with the production crew. People would raise their hand, the mic would move to them and they'd share their thoughts. It was great, it was tense. There were tears. There were rolling of eyes. There was some serious attitude. I love a good discussion where both sides are represented and both sides are willing to share their opinions honestly.

It was a great time- I would love to attend her show once a year. Which is funny, because I can't remember a single time in the last two years where I've even watched Oprah. I even forgot to watch it last time I was on. I won't forget this time. The TiVo is set. Tuesday. Watch it!Don't mind the picture...it's only 12 degrees and with wind chill below zero. Yes, my face is wind burnt. My toes are still numb. The things we do for Oprah...

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Kara the plumber...

About a week ago I noticed our tub was draining slower than usual. I have been experiencing the post-pregnancy shedding, where my hair seems to fall out in excessive amounts. Clearly this must have been the problem. So I pull out the Drain-O and let it work it's magic. Sure enough the next day it was draining much better. Problem solved.

The next day, same problem. Slow drainage. However the day before I used all my Drain-O. So I went out and bought two of the largest commercial strength bottles I could find. I pour a quarter of the bottle and allow the time to pass. Still the water won't go down. I pour another quarter of the bottle, still not working.

A couple days go by and I was still haunted with that stupid drain. Steve takes his showers with his feet submerged in 5 inches and it takes over an hour for it to drain. So I pull the plunger and start going to work on it. After my arms are completely sore from plunging I find relief when a small Dental-Pik (a one time use flosser) finally comes up through the pipes. I thought for sure this was my ticket. So I try more water...nothing. I pour more Drain-O. Nothing. I'm so frustrated at this point, but so stubborn I won't call anybody.

So today I go back to work on it. I'm tired of taking a shower, while my feet are taking a bath. I pull out more Drain-O, more hot water, and the handy dandy plunger. I realized the whole time I was trying to push the clog through, instead of pulling it back out through the drain. So I start using the plunger a little differently, focusing on pulling instead of pushing. Once again, my arms tire. And as I'm about to give up because I'm angry I see a small white thing coming up. My first thought was another dental-pik - Hallie loves playing those things. I try pulling it out and can't get it. I get the tweezers out and start pulling and I finally get it. But it wasn't a dental-pik...no, it was much larger. A washrag. Hunter's washrag made it's way down the drain and was causing major issues. Sure enough I pull that out, and the water makes it's way down the drain just fine.

Lesson learned. After a week, a very large bottle and a half of Drain-O and plunging with all the arm strength my weak little arms could handle, I pulled out a washrag. Good thing I didn't pay good money for someone to come out.

I couldn't help but call my sweet husband and brag about my sweet plumbing skills. I like life lessons, especially when I'm not out any money to learn them!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Valentine's Day Part 3, or 4...maybe 5...

You'd think with all the Valentine's post it was a month long holiday- not one day! So here's a brief recap of the day:

Started out the day with the breakfast of champions...mickey mouse chocolate chip pancakes, as well as heart pancakes. Yes Steve is the master pancake manipulator! We were greeted with a thin blanket of snow, so Steve was out shoveling. Hallie of course wanted to be where ever dad was, so I bundled her in all her gear and she went outside as well. She found her long lost bike (it's been lost to her ever since the first snowfall!) and insisted that she ride it. So that she did.
She had every neighbor watching her determination as she attempted to ride up icy driveways only to lose ground every attempt at peddling. Yes, there was frustration and anger. And this extremely sad, but cute face:
We exchanged cards, and then Steve gave me the gift we agreed we wouldn't be exchanging. Go figure, he's very bad at following instructions. However, I won't be complaining when I'm sitting on the 12th row watching Phantom of the Opera come August. It's a gift for both of us!
Hallie was pleased as punch with yet another tutu and even more excited when we surprised her with Chuck-E-Cheese. She was in heaven. She's the perfect age because she's in awe the whole time and loving every second, all the while only spending 10 tokens- she's a cheap date! She loved the car rides, but more so she loved the machine that took her picture and produced a card (similar to a driver's license) with her photo on the front of it. They had several different designs and it was a gamble as to which one you'd get. So she kept wanting another one. And since all the games/rides, everything is only 1 token, she could do 10 of them for all we cared.Steve owned the football throwing game. I hate to brag and tell you how cool he is, but for the record, he beat the high score. There was a guy that tried countless times to beat it, but Steve is the one that owned it. He's so hot.


Saturday, February 14, 2009

We love...

And since it's the day of love- a list of loves from the Pothiers

Hallie loves:
Mickey Mouse Chocolate Chip pancakes
Daddy, Hunter, and Mommy
Mr. Monkey
Books
Puzzles
Yogurt/Go-Gurt
Primary
When friends come over
Disney Princess sing-a-long
Chuck-E-Cheese
Family Home Evening DVD
Swim Lessons
Skyping family members
bowling on the Wii
Riding her bike
Preschool

Hunter Loves:
His pacifier
Milk
Gap
Milk
Pottery barn kids
Milk
Sleeping with a blanket over his face
To kick out of his pajamas
To be held

Steve Loves: (In his own words)
Wife- she rocks!
His family
Sportscenter
The Gospel
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Lemonades at restaurants
Eating out, Cheesecake factory
Playing flag football
Learning
Saving Money
Helping others
Playing in the snow with Hallie
Morning ritual (running/scriptures/breakfast w/Hallie)
Peru

Kara Loves:
Steve, Hallie & Hunter
Family
Gap & Pottery Barn
Graphic Design
Photography
Learning- always learning
Making things with my hands
Projects
Blogging
Skyping
Friends
Music
Accomplishing things
Decorating
Teaching
Walking- not running
Playing sports, basketball, tennis
The gospel
A good deal

Above everything, I love the life I'm living. And more importantly, I love the people I living it with.

Making Valentine's...

Valentine's is such a fun holiday! We've been teaching Hallie that Valentine's is a day of love. So of course her prayers have tripled in length because of all the people she loves, including, big baby, little baby, Mr. Monkey, and Polar bear. And if any of those are missed, we must say the prayer over!

The house is now decorated, hearts are hung, the mailboxes are out, red and pink candies a plenty, - and its a full blown love-fest! For Hallie's preschool group and our babysitting group we made some iPod valentine's. Hallie wouldn't stop carrying hers around, and I had to repeatedly remind her that they weren't real iPods, and the batteries weren't dead. They were fun!The other party we attended had a lot more people, the iPods would've been way too much work, so we opted for the traditional "Princess" valentines, of course with matching glitter tattoos! What was great about these was the amount of time Hallie spent spelling her name on all 20 valentines. Which is quite the accomplisment. Of course a few were missing letters and we need to work on the order of the letters- she's three. There will be plenty of time to figure out the order! There were a few times she got frustrated because the letters ran together as she was writing, but the smile on her face and sense of accomplishment when she had finished was worth every frustration! After that much work, she was reluctant to hand them out!

Happy Valentine's day...

Friday, February 13, 2009

Great sequence...

While visiting the water park I captured a great sequence of photos I just got a kick out of.

There was a large boat suspended in the air that slowly filled with water. Every 20 minutes or so there was an alarm sound that would go off to alert all those in the area that the boat was about to dump all the water out. Steve grabbed Hallie and stood in the area with a friend. They waited for a minute or two and then the water just started to come. The pressure of the water was more than Steve expected, and Hallie almost suffered a severe injury because of it. Thank heavens Steve hung on for dear life, and instead of major injuries, Hallie suffered just minor whiplash. Then kindly stated she didn't like the water hurting her!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Sheboygan...

There is nothing better than a little weekend R&R during a Wisconsin winter. We went with three other families and shared a townhome at Blue Harbor Resort in Sheboygan. It was great! The perfect getaway. Close to home. Affordable. Great company. Steve and I agreed we could definitely budget this in every month. It's worth our sanity!!There were plenty of "friends" for Hallie to run around with and she thought it was the greatest thing to stay in the same house with them. One family took charge of the meals, thank heavens. And it was everything we could ask for. Full blown meals, the whole works for breakfast, drinks, treats, you could tell they were experienced meal planners. After getting the children to bed, or at least in their pajamas and in the appropriate rooms, we pulled out all the good treats and enjoyed conversation and games. Our children decided they wanted to forego sleeping for a while. Hallie stayed up singing every church song she knew and Hunter, who although doesn't sleep during the day, usually sleeps decent at night. Not this time around. He decided this was the night that he would revert back to his newborn days and wake up every hour! AAGGHHHHH!!!

Clearly we forgot to mention to him that this was a R&R weekend. Needless to say morning came way too soon. But it was okay because there was a full blown breakfast underway. We packed up and went to the water park which the kids had waited so patiently for. It was really relaxing. There was sunshine coming through some windows and I made myself quite comfortable in a chair. And for a brief moment, sitting in my swimsuit, basking in the sunlight, watching Hallie soak in the water, with Hunter by my side finally sleeping, it felt like summer. And I got this giddy feeling. It's just around the corner and I can feel it and man am I excited. What was even better was coming home to a yard that we could see. The snow had melted and there was grass. Don't get me wrong, I'm not naive to think that we're done with snow for the season, but I'll take it while I can!As we drove home, I just felt so rested but at the same time completely exhausted. Great weekend.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Little man...

This kid just keeps getting bigger and bigger. I just want to eat his little cheeks off!
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