Sunday, November 22, 2009

Children of the Corn

Near my parents' house in Cary, some genius family farmers decided to temporarily turn their farms (which happen to be surrounded by neighborhoods full of young families) into a corn maze and Fall family fun place. Each time we drove past it on the way to my parents' house, Carter asked when we could go. So, we finally did.

One Friday night, we went out for pizza with my parents and headed to the corn maze. We walked the corn maze, which turned out to be A LOT more difficult than we had expected. You were supposed to find 10 different stations throughout the maze, and I think we only found about 5 before we all tuckered out. Remember, we had a 3 year old, 1 year old, and a gimpy grandpa with us. We eventually had to yell up for help to the man atop the scaffolding who was in charge of watching out for lost people like us.

After the maze, we enjoyed a haystack play area, a moonlit hayride around a pond, climbing on some huge tractors, and digging in a sand pit with mini-tractors. The boys were absolutely filthy and exhausted when we left, but we all had blast. Thanks for taking us, Mimi and Dudaddy!

And we're off!
At each fork in the maze, Tyler would point to which direction he wanted to go. It was hilarious. We didn't know any better than he, so we just went with it.

But we ended up seeing lots of signs like this one.

We learned our lesson and will bring our BOB stroller next time. The kids were tired just a few minutes in, and we were totally lost and going nowhere.

Look, Mom! I'm on a tractor!

Get off my tractor, or I'll steal your glow necklace, Bubba!

Now, these are BIG WHEELS!

This one's a little bit more my size.

Green Acres Farm put on a pretty good gig. I was impressed, and so were these boys!

Sleeping Under the Stars

In October, the Bursons, a fun family in our neighborhood, hosted a Fall Hoedown at their house down the street. Our kids just love their kids, Emma and Owen, who are each about a year older than Carter and Tyler. In fact, Emma is one of the many girls that Carter seems pretty infatuated with right now. Right in there with Emma are Lillie and Vivian, who is technically Carter's "wife." See our post about Myrtle Beach for more details. :)

Anyways, we jumped at the opportunity to spend a fall evening with some nice friends. But the most exciting thing about their party was that they invited everyone to camp out in their backyard after the party. Scott and Carter jumped at that opportunity, ran to Target and got our first tent. I deferred, thankfully having the very valid excuse that Tyler would never fall asleep in a tent and must stay home with me.

That evening, the kids enjoyed running around, playing some organized games by our neighbor Julie, eating until they had junk coming out of their ears, and roasting marshmallows over a crackling fire in the backyard. Us adults had a great time, as well, chatting, eating, drinking, and watching our kids have an absolute blast.

When nightfall came, we realized that no one had planned to stay and camp out except for Carter and Scott...well, Emma and her dad, too, of course. I took Tyler home, and guessed that I would be getting a call in the middle of the night from Scott to come get them. The temperature had dropped quite a bit that evening, and I couldn't imagine they would last long.

Turns out that I have quite the camper on my hands. Carter settled down quickly and fell fast asleep in the tent. He didn't wake until the morning, and said he never got cold. Scott slept in his dad's fancy sleeping bag and was so warm, he had to take his pajamas off in the middle of the night! Emma made it for an hour or two and then wanted to come inside... and I don't blame her!

Here are a few pictures from that night of fun!

Here are Emma and Carter enjoying suckers.

Tyler chilling by the fire.
Playing a toilet paper mummy game. Carter wanted it OFF!
Julie, a former teacher and STILL a wonderful one, explaining the games to the kids.
Give kids a garbage can. Who needs toys???

The Foot Saga

So many of my friends and family have been asking about what’s going on with my foot, especially after I dramatically vented on Facebook about all my woes. So, here’s the story.

This summer, I told myself that I needed to get in shape, and for some reason, decided that I was going to start running. Honestly, why I decided this is beyond me, since I’ve never liked to run. EVER. And always have thought that running must be the most boring sport. And on top of that, I’ve never been very good at it. So, crazy as it was, I started running, and even crazier was the fact that I really started to like it. Scott got me an arm band for my iPhone, and we even invested in a double BOB jogging stroller (which we LOVE).

I was running off and on, never super consistently, but I was definitely able to go further and further. Once Carter started preschool in September, I started running 2-3 times during the week with my friend Cameron, whose daughter is in Carter’s class. Now that I had a partner, I was running much more consistently, and Scott and I even started doing long runs together on the weekends. I’d do 3-4 miles each run during the week, and had done a few 6 mile runs on the weekends.

However, in late September, I started noticing part of my left foot hurting while I ran. It was never enough to make me stop, but I noticed it every step. At first, it only hurt when I run. A few weeks later, it started to hurt when I walked. About a week after that was the first time that it hurt when I was just sitting there. I realized that it was getting worse, and decided that I might actually need to do something about it.

While there are many downsides to being married to a resident physician (long hours, beepers that go off in the middle of the night, etc), there are some perks. We know lots of other residents, from many different specialties. So I called up my friend Leigh Anne, and asked if her husband Hal, an orthopaedic surgery resident, could take a look at it. He took a look and thought that I needed to officially go see someone and get some x-rays. Luckily, he just emailed one of his attendings and asked if he could fit me into his schedule the next day. Which he did! (THE PERKS!)

I saw Dr. Parekh in his office and had an x-ray, but there wasn’t much to see. Based on my physical exam, he thought I probably had a fracture in my 5th methatarsal…think, bone connected to your pink toe that runs the length of your foot. To make the next long month a short story, I then had an MRI and later, a CT scan. The radiology department and Dr. Parekh did not agree on my diagnosis, based on the scans. After my initial MRI, Dr. Parekh said that I would need surgery on my foot, resulting in 3-4 weeks of non-weight bearing time…think crutches or a knee scooter. (And yes, you can laugh out loud imagining me on a knee scooter. I did!) I would then be in a boot for another 4 weeks after that. That was when my freak-out happened. How in THE WORLD was I supposed to take care of my family in that kind of state? A CT scan later revealed that the fracture (which radiology still did not think was there) did not require surgery.

Next, Dr. Parekh prescribed me an orthotic that would be custom made to my foot, be worn in my shoe, and would be like a removable and walkable cast that would help my fracture heal. It only took FOREVER to get the orthotic, and then after a weekend of wearing it, it was just killing my heel. On the MRI, the radiology department saw a stress fracture on my heal (which Dr. Parekh did not, of course, agree with), but since I had not had pain there, there was “nothing to worry about.” That is, until I got an orthotic that pushed on my heel. I then went back to the orthotic place, had it adjusted to not hurt my heel, and left with high hopes. Only to realize that by the end of that day of wearing it, it STILL hurt my heel.

So, sadly, about a month and a half later, my foot saga is continuing. I may be going back to have my orthotic adjusted some more. I may be going back to Dr. Parekh to see about an alternate treatment plan. I may just find a large knife, a bottle of hard liquor, and just cut the foot off to end my misery.

I know, I know, it’s really not that bad. I don’t have cancer. This isn’t preventing me from taking care of my family. I’m not going to die from this. But it IS affecting my quality of life. Just when I was excited about running and being in shape, this stuff happens. I’ve been to a zillion doctor’s appointments, and finding someone to watch the kids is such a hassle. I haven’t had those endorphin highs from running, and I’ve also gained weight from not exercising. Put on top of all that, I am also one who eats when I feel sorry for myself. Not a good combination.

After a mini-breakdown, I am back on the wagon though. And I have put my rose-colored glasses back on. I may not be able to run the Derby mini-marathon in the spring like I had hoped, but I am going to stop feeling sorry for myself! Most of the time, anyway.

So, that’s the story of my foot saga. Turned out way longer than I thought, and I even felt like I was not including all the details.

For old time’s sake, I’m going to reminisce over these pictures that we took on my last long run before this saga started. Here we are at Herndon Park, where we ran with the kids one Saturday morning. Oh, the good times…

Isle of Palms, Part 2

Isle of Palms: 7 days and 489 pictures later. Yes, 489. I get a little carried away with my camera, I know. A little secret part of me kinda wants to be a photographer, so I love trying out new poses, angles, and editing effects. Here are a few of my favorite ones from the beach in Isle of Palms.

Scott trying out the waves!

Gigi helps the boys build a sand castle.

Brent and his sweet little girl, Story, sharing a moment in the waves.

Tyler lounging in a beach chair.

Carter just LOVED the waves!

Tyler wanted to boogie board like all the big boys!
Scott & Carter played football on the beach, and Carter is loving to kick the ball.

Carter riding the waves!

Tyler could have spent the whole day at the beach!

Story loved the beach, too...especially the sand! Evidently, it was tasty! :)

I Win, I Win!

I know, I know... I am the WINNER!

For worst blogger EVER!

I had such high hopes when I started this blog: I would blog at least once a week. Keep a record of our family for us, as well as to share with our family and friends. And one day, convert our blog into some coffee table books as family keepsakes. Recently, I've been eyeing, but making a book would actually require blogging first. Hmm...

Why can't I find time to do it? I don't really have the answer to that.

I'm going to be making a concerted effort, starting NOW, to try to blog once a week. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

In the mean time, check out my boys "celebrating" both their Nana's birthday on Novembe 16th and their cousin Story's first birthday on November 20th. We couldn't be there to celebrate with either of these favorites, so Carter found some birthday hats in the pantry. And we celebrated over granola bars. Happy birthday Nana and Story!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Isle of Palms= Isle of Heaven

In September, Scott’s parents generously took us, along with Scott’s brother Brent, his wife Jenn, and their baby Story, on a week long trip to Isle of Palms, South Carolina. We were in search of a get away that provided a slightly warmer place than home, a place where we could hang out and make fun family memories, and perhaps most importantly, a place that was family friendly. We found it all in Isle of Palms.

The Duncans rented an absolutely beautiful and extremely spacious home just a block from the beach. It was so well decorated and stocked with anything you could have ever needed from home (and more!). There was a pool in the backyard, bikes to ride, toys to play with… you name it! It was comfortable luxury at its finest! (Perhaps I should write a review of this place online, huh?) We spent our days playing in the waves, digging in the sand, jumping in the pool, taking runs and walks, lounging around the house, and just enjoying each other’s company. Us girls even ventured into Charleston one day and did a bit of shopping at a few of Charleston’s outdoor markets. Probably my favorite part of the trip was watching my boys interact with their cousin, Story. They loved playing with her, and she loved watching those rambunctious boys play. All in all, Isle of Palms turned out to be just the perfect place for this growing family!

Here’s the proof:

We took some time for family photos at a marina-side restaurant we went to one night.

Brent, Jenn and Story
Gigi, Papa, and their grandkids.

I missed the best part of this moment, but caught the end. Tyler and Story were sharing a snuggling moment. So sweet!

With the pool right out back, we spent quite a bit of time out there and had a blast!

The boys (little AND big) came up with all sort of games to play in the pool, but the favorites seemed to be jumping over or into things as you jumped into the pool. It was quite entertaining! Check out Tyler's face in this first one.
Brent, of course, had to join in.
Carter made it in the noodle circle!

Then started the game of jumping into Tyler's floaty ring.

We got quite a chuckle watching the big boys try to get out of that ring!

Tyler enjoying the pool!

My little surfer dude.

My boys were pretty much wet all weekend, between the pool and the beach.

My thumb sucker.

The house even had a backyard for the kids to play in. Perfect, I'm telling you.

And I couldn't leave the week without a little photo session of my precious niece, Story. Such a sweet girl!

Stay tuned for Isle of Palms, Part 2, for beach photos. I took over 489 pictures this week, so it's really hard to choose just a few!

P.S. Do any of you other bloggers know why some of my pictures are blurry on the blog but not in my iPhoto on my computer? Help would be greatly appreciated!