Thursday, October 17, 2013

3 Years

It was 3 years ago today that I received the phone call that changed our lives forever.

After visiting my dad in ICU and dropping my mom back off at home I received a phone call that she had suddenly died at home, in the front yard actually.

We always thought that she felt a sharp pain (her cause of death was sepsis from a UTI and heart disease) and tried to run to the neighbor's house for help.  The neighbor's grandson was the one who found her but she had already died.  She seemed fine (besides being worried about dad) when I dropped her off.  She didn't even know she had a UTI.

It's hard to believe still some days that she's gone.  She was such a huge part of my life.  She was no independent at all, I drove her to doctor's appointments, I made her appointments, I paid for things for her, we went shopping together, she came to visit every week, I talked to her on the phone every single day.  It's been weird these last 3 years without her.

But I did want to do something different this year.  I'm not going with my original idea of doing anything related to homeless this year.  Instead on my Facebook I'm going to ask people who met her to post a comment to my status about something they remember about my mom, a quick story even if it's good/bad/funny/sad.  I want to start doing this every year to collect for the girls so that they can read about their grandmother, not just from my point of view but from other people too.

I always remember my mom matching her jewelry to her outfits.  She had 100s of pairs of earrings, tons of necklaces and bracelets.  She also liked to make her own bracelets.  I love this because both the girls have started asking that I change their earrings almost everyday to match their outfits!!  Even Annabel points out which pair she wants to wear!  Annika also really likes making bracelets and wearing them too.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Flashback Friday

I missed throwback Thursday so here's a flashback for today!

Last year on Halloween.  This year Annika will be a ballerina and Annabel will be Little Red Riding Hood.  Last year they were Pippi Longstocking and a cat.

So another flashback, this is the costume Annika wore in 2011 that Annabel will be wearing this year.

So I think we can all tell that next year Annabel will be Pippi Longstocking and the following year she will be a ballerina :)

Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Little Genius

I only posted the results of Annabel's speech evaulation on Facebook.  I didn't want to post the FULL details because I didn't want to seem like "one of those" moms that likes to brag about things.

But people, a medical professional told me today that our child is a genius.

It's hard to not tell someone so I thought I'd come here to do it.

I'll start at the beginning.

Today was Annabel's speech evaulation.  We had to go to a local children's hospital's branch office to do it.  Our big issue we wanted looked at was that Annabel is almost 2 and she only says about 2-3 words that we can fully understand, dada, that and more.  She also does the sign for more when she says it.  Her speech is also a little muffled.

We started the evaulation just playing on the floor.  The speech therapist (ST) had a little tea set and a toy pig that sang songs.  The ST told me she would just let Annabel play and would take notes.

Annabel poured tea, handed out tea cups to me and the ST.  She pointed to things in the room like she was asking for them and she interacted a ton with the ST.

One of the tests she had to do was point out objects in a book.  The first picture had a ball, an apple and a spoon.  Annabel pointed to the right pictures when the ST said each word.

For fun the ST did a page in the book where she's only allowed to use verbs to describe what is going on in each picture.  She told me if Annabel didn't get them right it was no big deal because the page was for 3 year olds.

One picture was a boy taking a bath, another of a boy playing with blocks, a boy eating ice cream and a boy running.  The verbs were "eating", "bathing", "playing" and "running".  She got them all right and the ST's eyes got really big.

"Now for fun lets try the 4 year old page."  There were 3 pictures of trees.  The first picture had a tree with sunshine, second picture had a tree with rain clouds and rain and the third picture had a tree with fall leaves.

So the ST says to Annabel, "Tom went outside to play and his shoes got wet, what picture was Tom playing in?"  Annabel sat for about 3 seconds reviewing the pictures and pointed to the one with the rain clouds and rain.

Unbelivable.  She did 3 more pages with pointing to objects.  Then she did some activites were she had to follow directions, like "get the teddy bear, pour him a cup of tea and give him a cookie".  Then she did it.  Another one "give mommy a cup of tea, make sure it's not too hot".  So she poured me tea, blew on it and handed it to me.  "Give me 1 block" and she did.

The ST says that in comprehension (following directions, understanding) she scores as a 3 year old but in speech she scores as a 9-12 month old.  Because of the large difference she thinks that she might qualify for some sort of speech therapy but because of her high comprehension score she already knows that she will not qualify for Early Intervention and there is a possiblity she will not qualify for anything at all and we'll just have to do activities at home with her.

I asked her where this will leave us and she looked at me and said "your child is special, she's pretty much a genius, we just need to help her learn to speak."  Then she paused and said, "seriously, your child is a genius".

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Pinterest Pins I Love

I am a pinning fool.  If you don't follow me you should, on a good week I pin every single day.  I'm really on a food kick lately.  Click here to find me.

I totally want to make these Pumpkin Cupcakes.  I used to hate pumpkin but I realized that I just hate pumpkin pie, I love pumpkin baked into things like muffins, cupcakes and cake!!

I used to love oatmeal cream pies but they have so much junk in them that I've never bought them for the girls.  I really want to try this recipe soon.

This is something I actually made!!  Annika loves Nutella and so does Annabel.  See how excited she was when I bought her some:

And how much Annabel enjoyed eating it!

So for Annika's birthday I want to make her a cake with Nutella buttercream, we made a test batch a few weeks ago and it was a success so we'll be making it again in November.

Have you heard of "no poo"?  I hadn't either but I was desperate to try something because my hair is seriously a mess lately!  So now I'm no pooing :)  I haven't used shampoo or conditioner in a week and my hair already looks healthier (a little greasy but I'm working on the right combination of baking soda/apple cider vingear).  I'm giving it till December to work and then if my hair still looks awful I'm getting a pixie, for real, I'm done.

Saturday, October 5, 2013


We went a few weekends ago to pet puppies at the seeing eye dog school.

If you want to check it out go here:

They actually have a "puppycam" you can view to see the puppies we played with!

It was a lot of fun for the girls and us, we love playing with puppies, we just don't want to take one home!  Puppies are a ton of work, work that we can't handle with the two girls.

First we saw the puppies in their little area while we waited to go inside.

Annika was clearly excited!

I wish I could buy her a puppy but it's just not going to happen anytime soon!

Annabel loved them too but didn't get too close at first.

Josh and the girls waiting for the puppies to come in.  They were explaining that the do this a few times a week to get the puppies socialized with people before they start "school" to be a seeing eye dog.

Eeekk!!!  This naughty boy jumped right on Annabel.  Luckily Annabel is so chill that she didn't even cry or scream.

If you are going to play with puppies do not style your child's hair in pigtails.  Every single puppy came around to chew on Annika's pigtails!

Annabel and I watching the puppies play.

This is the same puppy that was jumping on Annabel, he just kept coming back!

Our attempt at getting a picture of the girls outside.  They always look like they're in pain lately!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Busch Gardens: 2nd Visit

We went to Busch Gardens again a few weeks ago.  We got their Fun Card so we can go back as many times as we want this year.  Now that we've gone two times I feel like we've gotten our monies worth but I still want to squeeze in at least two more visits before the end of the year!

This time we went with our new friends and their 2 1/2 year old son!  We finally made parent friends!

Annika and him are so cute together holding hands! (I'm not sure how they feel about blogs so I'm not showing his face or telling his name)

Annika "driving" the car.  I didn't realize but Annabel is actually old enough to do this to so next time I'll let her.

This thing was creepy!!  I made Josh carry Annabel so we could get across faster!  We're about 4 stories up.

On the carousel.

Annabel's first ride!  She loved it.

The first time we went we didn't do these swings but Annika thought it was great.

This was the Sesame Street show.  Annika liked it a lot but Annabel HATED the characters and everytime one tried to come up to her she hid her face on my arm.

She watched the show but she wanted those characters to stay away!

The Madagascar show was cute.  Lots of good music and both the girls love music!

We barely got half of the park done.  Next time we're going to start on other side of the park so we can see more animals (we only saw birds and iguanas this time) and go on some different rides.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Throwback Thursday

August of 2011.

I swear that really is me, all blond, plus I'm like 5 months pregnant with Annabel and barely showing at all!  This day we were at Downtown Disney in Orlando and I can tell you I totally remember feeling like shit this day.  Annabel kept me sick way into that pregnancy!  She's totally the reason I'll never do it again!

But she's totally worth it.  And this little booger in the picture.  I can't believe she'll be 4 years old next month!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Mom's Anniversary

The anniversary of my mom dying is coming up on the 17th.  Instead doing what I've done the past two years (sit around depressed and crying or ignore it completely) I want to do something different.

If you are new to the blog and don't know the story read it here.

My mom had a "thing" for homeless people.  While most people ignore them or get angry when they see them she had an extreme soft spot for them.  She volunteered at a homeless shelter, she would donate clothes and she volunteered at a soup kitchen.

I do not have a "thing" for homeless people (guess I take after my dad).  I'm one of those people that ignores them, unless they say hi when I'm walking downtown by my work, I always say hi back, because that would just be rude.  But I would never start up a conversation with a homeless person on my own.  I never give anyone money on the side of the road, the most I've done ever is give a man that claimed to be a veteran a bottle of water because he looked liked it was going to die from heat stroke!  It's too hot to stand on corners of the street in FL!

My original idea was to make cookies, put them in individual bags, put some sort of verse/poem or saying on the bag and hand them out to the homeless people by my work.  I would have to convince someone else (probably my friend at work) to help me out and I'd want to do it during my lunch break on the 17th. I want to do it on the actual anniversary, which is why I can't volunteer at a homeless shelter or anything because I do have to work that day.

But do homeless people really need a cookie?  Then I think that maybe that's the point.  People are always trying to give them things they NEED, maybe a little treat would be good.  I also happen to make some of the best chocolate chip cookies!

What do you all think?

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


~I haven't had a real blog post in almost 2 months.  Oops!

~I think I'm back now, for real, I'll be blogging again.  Just be warned that the 3rd anniversary of my parents dying is coming up on the 17th (for mom) and December 4th (for dad).

~Speaking of those anniversaries I have ideas of what to do for them, another real blog post on that coming up!

~Annika is doing great in her tap/ballet combo class.  I really do think she prefers tap though even though I prefer ballet.  In the end it'll be what she wants though.  The school she goes she can do the combo class for another year before she'll have to pick one or the other.  Then Annabel will start that year too with probably just ballet the first year, just like Annika did.  She's a shy girl but she loves to dance!

~Speaking of Annabel she still isn't speaking.  She has a speech evaluation on the 10th.  The only new word she's added to her vocab in the last 3 months is "more" and she says it muffled but we can understand it, I doubt anyone else would be able to though unless they knew the sign lanuage sign for it which she does too.

~I hope we get some fall weather soon.  It's insane that I'm saying that because I HATE being cold but I have a lot of cute sweaters and pants I've bought on my Goodwill shopping trips during the summer (always buy clothes for the opposite season at Goodwill, you'll have the best luck!).  Plus we have a fall festival in our neighborhood in a few weeks and it would be nice to not sweat to death at it.

~Maybe I'll try to do a blog post everyday this month, maybe :)