Monday, April 29, 2013

The Night Dessert was Healthier than Dinner

Apparently every night that Charlotte and I were in the hospital, Trenton pestered Jarrod to let him have cereal for dinner.

Daddy never gave in, but Mommy felt bad for not getting to spend much time with her little man, and gave in last night.

After eating a healthy lunch (or as healthy as you get with Mr. Picky Pants – fish sticks, cantaloupe, and strawberries), I told Trenton that he could have cereal for dinner.

What he didn’t know was that I had a special dessert in mind too.

While Jarrod had the kids in the tub for bath time, I whipped up a batch of Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream.

Healthy Style.

Blender Mint Chocolate Chip "Ice Cream" - Made with Spinach & Avocado - No Milk

I got this recipe from a friend, and was really excited to try it.  So excited, in fact, that the first time I tried it, I burned up my blender.  But I got a new one, and it worked great whipping this up tonight.

 

Mint Chocolate Chip “Ice Cream” – Healthy Style

3-4 cups ice (I used crushed ice to make it easier on my blender)
1/4 c. honey
1 tsp. mint extract
1 large handful spinach
1/2 avocado
chocolate chips

Put all ingredients except for chocolate chips in the blender and blend until smooth and creamy.  Spoon into bowls and add chocolate chips (or Ghirardelli dark chocolate!).

Blender Mint Chocolate Chip "Ice Cream" - Made with Spinach & Avocado - No Milk!

Charlotte isn’t a big ice cream fan and didn’t want to try any, but Trenton liked it!  Score!  He did only eat about half of his bowl though because he said it was too cold for his mouth (it is definitely colder than regular ice cream).  And he also said that his favorite ice cream flavor is still Oreo Blast, but I’ll take any sort of victory I can!

Jarrod and I also each had a bowl of the “ice cream” and liked it.  Jarrod was such a big fan that he ate Charlotte’s uneaten bowl too!

We’ll definitely be making this again.  If anyone else has recipes for healthy desserts that are kid-friendly, pass them my way.  I’d love to try them!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

We’re Home!

Going Home

We are glad to be home!

Well at least now we are.  When I told Charlotte yesterday morning that we were coming home, she wasn’t too happy about it.  And she definitely wasn’t happy when she had to get her IV taken out.  She wanted to bring it home!  Weird child!

Now we’re working on catching up on sleep, laundry, grocery shopping, and cleaning the house.

Oh, and Duck Dynasty.  Gotta catch up on that too!

Charlotte has been fever-free since Friday afternoon, and we’re hoping that it stays that way.  We have a follow up with the pediatrician on Tuesday, and we’ll hopefully be able to see Charlotte’s kidney doctor soon too. 

Thanks to everyone for all of their thoughts, prayers, and kind words.  And also thank you to our friends and family who sent goodies, came to visit us in the hospital, and helped out with Trenton.  You guys rock!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Hospital Stay

Hello from the local hospital!  Charlotte and I have taken up residence here for the past few days.

Charlotte has pyelonephritis (an upper kidney infection) and is on iv antibiotics.

It all started Tuesday night when I got home from a cheese making class, and Jarrod told me that Charlotte had asked to go to bed at 6:45. She had taken a nap in the afternoon (which she rarely does), so I knew something was up. I went upstairs to check on Charlotte and she was burning up. I gave her some ibuprofen and got ready for bed myself. I was awakened in the morning by Charlotte crawling in bed with me and proceeding to throw up everywhere.

Sick Charlotte

I sent Trenton off to preschool with a friend, and called the pediatrician's office as soon as they opened. Charlotte's urine showed an infection. Her fever had been pretty high, and the doctors told me to call them if it got any worse. Charlotte and I left the doctors office, went to pick up her prescription, and then headed home.

Charlotte took her first dose of antibiotics, ate a little lunch, and was then ready to lay down for a nap. When she woke up from her nap a little over an hour later, her temperature had soared to 105.6. I called the doctors office and they had me bring her right in.

A couple doctors talked to us and decided that Charlotte probably had a case of pyelonephritis which is more severe than a normal UTI. They sent us to the hospital and told us to expect to spend a few nights there.

Teddy Bear

We are going on our third night here, and are hoping to get released tomorrow. Charlotte is still running high fevers off and on, but thankfully she has not vomited since early yesterday morning. 

But if we're going to have to be stuck in the hospital, this is a nice one to be stuck in.  It is ranked #16 on the most beautiful hospitals in the world list.

There is a playroom that any kid would love to have.

CHOMP Playroom

We’ve gotten visits from a therapy dog.

CHOMP Therapy Dog 

And there is even an indoor koi pond where Charlotte got to feed the fish.

CHOMP Fish Pond

But as nice as this place is, we're still hoping that we get to go home to our own beds soon!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tuesday Playgroup: Swing into Spring

Are there any other Curious George fans in the house?

My kids LOVE Curious George.  And this mommy is pretty fond of the cute little monkey too.

When we were in San Diego last month, and a commercial came on for a new Curious George spring special, the date immediately went into my calendar.

Yesterday was the day that Curious George Swings into Spring premiered on TV, but I made my kids wait until today to watch it.  We had some friends over for Tuesday playgroup so that we could all watch it together.

And what’s a playgroup movie without snacks?

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Good ‘ol George kept the kids occupied for about 15-20 minutes (just about the same time it took them to finish eating their snack necklaces) before they were off exploring the playroom and backyard.

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After playing for awhile, the kids sat down to make birdfeeders.

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I was happy that I wasn’t the only mom who had to remind her kids to not lick the peanut butter off the knife or eat the birdseed!  I think they were all following in the footsteps of their favorite curious monkey!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Weekend Review: Beach Day, a Steam Train Ride, & Aggie Muster

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous here this weekend!  (Why can’t Monterey weather be this nice in the summer?)

And what better way to spend a beautiful Friday evening than this?

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And this.

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And of course, some of this.

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Oh, and just a little side note: Don’t worry about North Korea.  These two have missile defense taken care of.

DSC_6531_1Stomp Rocket

Yesterday we drove up to Felton and took a step back in time to ride the steam train at Roaring Camp.

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We’ve been up to Roaring Camp multiple times, and the kids never tire of riding the trains.

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Well, except for maybe this kid…

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We were about halfway up Bear Mountain when Charlotte started nodding off.  Once the train got to the top of the mountain, everyone could get off for a few minutes to look around the redwood forest.  But Charlotte and I stayed put.

Sleepy Charlotte
(At least I was able to lay her down on my lap though!)

Of course by the time we got back down the mountain, Charlotte was wide awake and ready for a treat!

Today Jarrod and I spent the evening with other Aggies for the annual Aggie Muster.  Out of all of the wonderful Aggie traditions, Muster is my favorite.  Just as I answer “here” for friends and family that have passed, I know that other Aggies will answer “here” for me once my time on this earth is through.

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I put together a new Aggie skirt this week (it only took about an hour to sew this thing) just for Muster.  I had to show it off a bit!

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It was great getting to meet so many new Aggies today!  I love that wherever we are, we can always find friends in fellow A&M alumni.

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“We are the Aggies, the Aggies are we
True to each other as Aggies can be.”

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Being an Aggie

Texas A&M University has gotten a lot of press in the past year.  An outstanding season of football.  A Heisman Trophy winner.

That’s all exciting, and Aggies everywhere are proud of their team and excited for what’s to come this season.

But what truly makes Aggies proud is what their school stands for.

I’m sure most of you have heard about the explosion in the town of West, Texas earlier this week.

Leave it to Aggieland to band together in a time of need.

This is a letter from one of the local business owners in College Station:

Dear My Fellow Aggies,

I write you this Thank You letter today to express in words of what my heart felt as we collected supplies all day following with the intense emotions upon arrival to the WestFest Fairgrounds in West, Texas. Yesterday was a day that Aggies and Aggieland will be proud of for the next century.

In a joint effort orchestrated by over 15 local businesses with Aggieland Outfitters as the lead, 3 student organizations, 200 plus aggie volunteers, and countless generous donators, we delivered approximately 226,500 pounds (Over 113 Tons-equal to the weight of Boeing 757) of supplies in two 53’ Semi-trailers, two 35’ Trailers, three 15’ moving vans, one RV, one moving trailer, and convoy of personal vehicles. We also delivered over $15,000 in cash donations to the town leaders. You want to know the most amazing part? We had delivered all this within 24 hours of the accident. There is no other way to classify this extraordinary effort other than to just say “There’s a spirit can ne’er be told.”

Now I want to tell you a story Ags.

One that will make your emotions run and heart cry. This is for all those who donated and gave their time but could not make the trip. You deserve to know how your hard work paid off. So I share this story with you so you can experience the same gratifying feelings I felt.
We arrived in West around 7pm, there were EMS, emergency vehicles, state trucks, and utility vehicles scattered throughout the entire town. I even saw one vehicle tagged with Comal County on the side of it. We pulled our Aggie Convoy of 20 plus vehicles into the fairgrounds. I was fortunate to be the driver in the lead vehicle so I got to receive the first wave of thank yous and emotions. As we came in the men were walking up to my truck to direct me, but others to just shake our hands. We drove down to the drop off point, and at the last checkpoint, the traffic director stopped me; he asked if we were with the ‘Aggie Convoy’? I replied “Yes Sir”, and he stated “we have been waiting on you, and we have the entire loading dock area open for you guys.” Some people begin to cheer and were eager to help unload, some just stood awe struck, while others snapped photos on their phones. The crowd was large mixes of local students, families, parents, business owners, and of course their Hometown Aggies. There was lots of maroon already walking around. As I hopped out of my truck, one of the men who was directing us came to shake my hand, but we ended up giving each other that manly shake/hug, he broke away from me with tears in his eyes. This is when the surrealism set in, overcome by everything, exhaustion, and emotion; I went into a daze where other convoy people were talking to me, but I felt like they were yelling from the distant background. It was a one of the most amazing feelings I have ever felt. I shook loose of the stupor only to then realize all the other Aggies there were the same state of surrealism.

With the help of the people there and our teams of Aggies, we got most of our convoy unloaded 100 times quicker than we loaded it. It was simply amazing of the effort there from the people of West. We began to shake more hands, local Aggies came up to meet us. One Aggie man came walking up in tears and just bear hugged one of the Aggieland Outfitter’s employees. I saw some children digging in the piles of clothes and putting on Aggie Tshirts. I was constantly told by people and the local aggies, tell everyone in Aggieland Thank You! After lots of hugs and hand shaking, we broke off in teams and begin to help unload other vehicles with the West locals. Some of the people there had no homes to go to while others were working hard to ease their minds over their loved ones. They were incredibly strong town and independently helping themselves. There was no Red Cross or Fema to direct or lead them; these people were doing all themselves. The people of West Texas are what make this country so great, but they will still need our help. So please do not stop praying for West and continue to help them in this time of need.

On the last semi-trailer full of water, we formed a long water line to pass water off the truck, half way thru we begin to sing the Aggie War Hymn. That’s when I said to God, “Thank You God for making me a Fight’in Texas Aggie“.

THANK YOU Aggieland and all Aggies who helped in this effort,

God bless,
Cameron Salome ‘07
Proud Aggie
Part-Owner/Manager of College Depot

Special Thanks to:
Aggieland Outfitters
Texas A&M Students
Student Bonfire
Jack Hillard Distributing
BCS Chamber of Commerce
AT&T
D&D Moving & Storage
Maroon Bikes
KBTX
TexAgs
KAGS
KORA
Big Event
Raising Canes

While I love my football team, it is things like this that make my heart swell with pride.

And this was not the first time Aggies have taken a stand together.

Back in July over 600 Aggies stood in silent vigil forming a “Maroon Wall” in front of Central Baptist Church in College Station to block Westboro Church protesters from Lt. Col. Roy Tisdale’s funeral.

Maroon Wall
(Source)

On the first Tuesday of each month the student body gathers at Academic Plaza at 10:15pm in total silence to honor current students who have passed away the previous month in a Silver Taps ceremony.  While campus lights are extinguished, cell phones are turned off, and students stand in silence, hymns chime from Albritton Tower followed by the Ross Volunteer Firing Squad marching into the plaza firing three rifle volleys and buglers playing a special rendition of Silver Taps.  Silver Taps is played three times – once to the north, once to the south, and once to the west, but never to the east because the sun will never rise again on those fallen Aggies.  After the buglers play, students silently return home.

My first experience with just how special the Aggie student body is was on September 22, 2001.  I was a senior in high school and was still undecided about where I wanted to go to college.  My family and I had tickets to the Texas A&M vs. Oklahoma State football game, our first trip to Kyle Field.  It had been published all of the local newspapers that students were coordinating a “Red, White, and Blue Out” as a 9/11 tribute.  Depending on where your seats were, you were supposed to wear either a red, white, or blue shirt.  My family and I walked into Kyle Field in our white shirts, but we were not prepared for the overwhelming act of patriotism.  A crowd of 70,000 were all decked out in red, white, and blue (other than the corps block) and more than $150,000 was raised for the New York Fire and Police relief funds from the sale of t-shirts.  And all of this was coordinated by students.  In about 10 days.  It was at that football game that I decided that I was going to be an Aggie too.

Red_white_and_blue_out_display_image
(Source)

And tomorrow Aggies all over the world will come together in over 300 different Muster ceremonies to pay tribute to all current and former Aggies that have passed away in the past year.  From College Station, Texas, to the fields of Afghanistan, and from warships in the middle of the ocean to the outback of Australia, Aggies answer “here” during a roll call of fallen Aggies.

Softly call the Muster,
Let comrade answer, “Here!”
Their spirits hover ‘round us
As if to bring us cheer!

Mark them ‘present’ in our hearts.
We’ll meet some other day
There is no death, but life etern
For our old friends such as they!

Muster
Muster 2010 – Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan

Becoming an Aggie was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.  We are not just a school.  We are a family.

“There’s a spirit can ne’er be told
It’s the spirit of Aggieland.”

Friday, April 19, 2013

T-Ballers

Are these two not the cutest little t-ball players ever???

tball

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

How I Exercise

You know how every time you go to a new doctor (which is pretty often for me as much as we move around), you get asked about your exercise regimen?

Do you exercise?  How often?  What types of exercise?

Well, instead of having to repeat myself to these doctors all the time, I’m just going to show them this post on my handy dandy phone.

So here goes.

This momma’s exercise regimen consists of…

Running

Running

To the potty an average of *86.2 times per day to help a certain little girl.

Squats

Squats

Gotta pick up after those little tornadoes.  No one wants to slip on a puzzle piece or step on one of those itty bitty legos.

Stair Steppers

Stair Steppers

Nightly reps to tell the little hooligans to get back in bed.

Weight Lifting

Weight Lifting

With both 31 pound and 38 pound weights.

Yoga

Yoga

Multiple times a day.  Gotta make sure we don’t have stinky feet!

So there you have it.  A busy momma’s exercise regimen!

 

*Totally made up number.  I’ve never counted how many trips Charlotte makes to the toilet in a day, but it is A LOT!  Probably not quite 86.2 though…

DISCLAIMER: I actually do make time for real workouts 3-4 times a week.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Weekend Review: Picnicking, Point Lobos Hiking, and The Little Mermaid

After our pictures in the bluebonnet/lupine fields at Toro Park on Friday evening, we found a table, pulled our cooler out of the car, and had ourselves a little picnic.

picnic
Does a picnic get much more perfect than this?

And what’s a trip to the park without playing on the playground?

Saturday morning we drove down to Point Lobos to meet some friends for a hike.  The weather wasn’t gorgeous, but at least it wasn’t as windy as it was the last time we visited this state park.

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(Trenton told me that I had to take a picture of these “really old dinosaur fossils.”

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After hiking, we headed down the road to Carmel Valley for lunch.  The kids stayed busy coloring and playing with Wikki Stix while the adults were happy to find their favorite school on TV.  Gig ‘em, Aggies!

WikiStixMaroon & White Game

Today was church and lunch in Carmel followed by a production of The Little Mermaid at Golden Bough Playhouse.

Church
Mommy and Charlotte before leaving for church.  I was just bragging last week about how good the kids have been doing in church.  Charlotte made me eat my words today…

I’m pretty sure that The Little Mermaid was the first movie I saw in the theater, and it’s always been a favorite of mine.

I wasn’t quite sure how the kids would do since we’ve never taken them to a play or a movie.

But they did great!  We watched the animated film last night, so they knew what to expect.  Trenton kept asking when Ursula was going to show up, and Charlotte just loved Ariel (until it came time to meet her and she didn’t want to sit with Ariel by herself).

Ursula the Sea Witch

Ariel

Whew!  It was a fun weekend, but I’m beat!  I think tonight might be an early night for this Mommy!