Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Attack

Last night, as we were playing in the backyard with the boys and Scott's dad, Tony, we were attacked by wasps out of nowhere. Everyone was down in the grass, except me, and I was standing right on the deck watching the boys play baseball. All of a sudden, it felt like a knife just stabbed my hand, and I just started screaming, holding my hand, and yelling, "Oh my gosh, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts!" As the others are coming over to see me, Scott starts yelling things that I won't write on the blog and ripping off his shirt. Amongst the madness, Tyler starts crying and Carter starts running after Scott. I get myself together and grab the kids to get inside, and Scott runs all the way around the house and rings the front doorbell to try to get inside. After our nerves are a bit calmed, we realize that I have one wasp sting on my hand, and Scott has one on his arm and three on his stomach. I'm still complaining how mine hurts, but Scott already seems to be better... making me think that I'm pretty much a big baby. HOWEVER...by bed time last night, Scott's were nearly gone and not noticeable, while my whole hand began to turn red and swell. The sore hand woke me up several times last night, and after Ibuprofen and Benadryl, the swelling and pain continues and is worsening today. Clearly, I know I'm overreacting, but I'm beginning to have visions of hospital trips and amputation in my head. Please pray for me and my nasty looking hand....which I'm hoping to be able to post pictures of when Scott gets home...I'm no good at pushing the shutter button with my left hand.

UPDATE: Here are my hands, as of 4:00 on Tuesday... about 20 hours after the wasp attack. Notice the hand on the left (my right hand) and how it is red and swollen. It's worse in real life... I promise.

Here's Scott gearing up to go kill wasps and knock down nests. Let's hope this works.

NEW UPDATE: On Wednesday morning, my hand was continuing to get worse and worse. More redness and more swelling, even after lots of Benadryl and Ibuprofen. At this point, I decided to go to the Urgent Care. I felt that my situation was out of my radiologist husband and radiologist father-in-law's area of expertise...though, I'm pretty sure that the Urgent Care doctor really didn't know any more. Here are pictures I took of my hands while I was waiting to see the doctor:

My normal left hand:

My swollen right hand:

To make a long story short, the doctor thought that I had a bad hand infection, that resulted from the wasp sting. He put me on 2 rigorous doses of antibiotics, and gave me a brace to hold my hand still (which I didn't even really use and later got a $75 bill for!). The redness and swelling continued to get worse that day and night... Scott even had to stay home from work, because I literally couldn't even open the kids' sippy cups. Thankfully, by the next afternoon, the swelling and redness began to go down. It wasn't until almost a week later that my hand felt totally normal! It is still a debate as to whether or not I had an allergic reaction to the wasp sting or whether I got an infection as a result of it. We may never know, but boy am I glad to have all of this behind me!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Gina Weekend 2009

To make a long (and probably not as funny to you as it is to us) story short, I have a group of girlfriends from college that we call the "Ginas."  Now that weddings seem to be slowing down, we've not had as many opportunities to pull us from all the places we are over the eastern part of the U.S. to get together.  So, alas... Gina Weekend was officially created in 2007.  

This year, for Gina Weekend 2009, Gina Cam so graciously offered for us to stay at her in-laws' home on the Reynolds Plantation in Georgia, which is home to a Ritz Carlton, 4 golf courses, and a community of beautiful homes.  Here's the clencher... Cam's last name is Reynolds.  Her father-in-law is THE Reynolds of Reynolds Plantation.  Needless to say, the Ginas were living lives of luxury this past weekend that we will probably never ever live again.  Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds were SO sweet and generous with us, and allowed us to live in this home like it was our own... at least for a few days.  

We stayed up WAY too late each night, ate chips and dip all day, had LOTS of girl talk, and just enjoyed each other's company.  This year, I was fortunate enough to only be a Gina on Gina Weekend!  Last year, I had to be Gina and Mommy, as still breastfeeding Tyler tagged along.  This year, my wonderful hubby kept both boys, and my incredible in-laws came in for the weekend, too!  Clearly, the boys were well taken care of, so I felt foot lose and fancy free.  Literally.  I just kept saying that I felt like a kid again... with no one to worry about except myself.  I did flips off the diving board (even a one and a half!), giggled, laid around, and did running jumps off the dock into the beautiful Lake Oconee.  I hadn't felt so free in a long time.

Although I THOROUGHLY enjoyed my freedom and girl time, it felt SO good to hear my Carter say "Night night, my girl" (our nightly routine) the evening that I got home.  

I hope our Gina Weekends can continue for many years to come!   

All the Ginas (plus the two Gina baby boys)... except Julie, who was visiting her hubby in Africa... pretty good reason to not make it.

I didn't take many pictures of the house like I meant to, but this is just a snipit of the area by the pool.  The landscaping is exquisite!  

The pool and the diving board that got great use!

Cam's little man, Whit, who's only 10 weeks old.

Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds admiring their grandson and daughter-in-law.  

Blair holding Holly's little miracle, Liam.

Liam loves him some carrots!

Chillin' by the pool on a hot and beautiful Georgia day.

Proof that I really did do flips.

I convinced Holly to do flips, too!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The RoBards and Duncans take Myrtle Beach!

For the past three years, our great friends, the RoBards and we have been planning an annual short vacation together.  Previously, we've gone to Pigeon Forge, TN, which is pretty much the only thing to do that is half the distance between Louisville and Durham.  This year, however, we decided to mix it up and head to Myrtle Beach, SC.  That meant quite a lot more driving for the RoBards, but they seemed to think it was worth it. 

We stayed in a nice 2 bedroom condo in the Royale Palms tower on Kingston Plantation.  (Yes, 2 bedrooms for 9 people... it worked out remarkably well, especially since both of the babies slept in pack n plays in the spacious walk-in closets!)  We ate every meal in and only left the plantation to make a run to the local (and busiest I've EVER seen) Wal-Mart.  With 5 kids ages 4 and under, it was a vacation made in Heaven!  Some of my favorite memories are:
  • the daddies digging giant holes in the sand to make the kids a "pool"
  • watching the kids have an absolute blast in the water park on the plantation
  • the mommies and the daddies getting to leave separately during nap time to go work out
  • the delicious Trader Joes meals that we whipped up in no time and for so little money
  • Vivian and Carter's wedding... which took place in the condo, when the daddies were running and all the other kids were sleeping.  I think they got married about 3 or 4 times, and decided they would honeymoon at "Dudaddy's house."
  • Zach thinking that the Myrtle Beach sand was the tastiest thing he had ever eaten
  • sleeping in until 8:45 each morning.  Although the kids went to bed very late every night, they slept in until 8:45 each morning.  Wow, that felt good.

Carter really enjoyed the ocean and was pretty bold, until he got water up his nose.

Pensive Tyler
Leigh attempting to save Zach from the sand he was eating.  It even showed up in his diaper!

The digging of the "pool" on the beach.  Go, daddies, go!

One of my favorite shots I took that weekend... a tired Vivian, but turned out very cool.  Look at those piercing eyes!

It's always fun to get to spend this 24-hours a day vacation time with the RoBards, and we look forward to all the many memories we will make in the years to come!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Let's hear it for the girls!!!

On Tuesday, July 14th, I had the privilege of meeting the sweetest, cutest twin baby girls ever!  My dearest friend from way back when, Ellen, gave birth to her little miracle babies, Claire Elizabeth and Caitlin Irene.  Ellen had been such a trooper through her trying pregnancy, and carried those girls in her belly so gracefully.  She is already a natural mother, and the girls are doing fantastic.  Ellen has been like family to my boys and I feel blessed that I will be able to do the same for Claire and Caitlin...and I'm SO excited to have two more reasons to buy pink stuff!

Welcome to the world, Claire and Caitlin!  We've been waiting anxiously to meet you, and you're such a blessing!

I'll be honest...I'm not sure who is who.  They look VERY similar, except that Claire is smaller.

Daddy Kevin and the new proud grandmother, Irene

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Funny How Things Change

I was going to be a marine biologist.  Then it was teacher.  Then doctor.  Somewhere in there, I was absolutely convinced that i was going to be the first woman president.  No, really, I was.  My Daddy always told me that I could be anything that I wanted to be, and I believed him.  Still kinda do.

So, I've been thinking lately how I never imagined myself being a stay at home mom.  I always knew that I would have kids and that being a mom would be super important to me.  But because I saw my mom do it all (have a full time teaching job, while my dad traveled a ton) AND manage to raise 2 kids pretty darn well, I always thought I'd follow in her footsteps.  

Then, I became a teacher.  I loved being a teacher, but I worked like a dog.  I always took work home with me, both literally and emotionally.  I saw my colleagues literally come in to work in tears after leaving their children at daycares, or even at a family member's house.  I began to doubt my plan... maybe I didn't want to do it all.

Fast forward a few years to today.  I'm the mom to 2 adorable boys and the wife to a truly wonderful husband.  I am the stay at home mom that I never thought I would be, and I plan on being home with my kids at least for the next few years.  Most days, it is exactly what I want to be doing with my life.  Are there days that I would love to be leaving for work?  Sure.  Are there moments when I question my sanity for getting myself into all of this?  Absolutely.  But I chose this life.  And it's turned out to be a pretty darn good choice.  

Besides, who wouldn't want to look at these adorable faces all day long?

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Feelin' a little All-American

Fourth of July this year was quite a success!  Since we moved here 3 years ago, we've made it a tradition to go to this AMAZING donut shop called The Fractured Prune.  It's about 20 minutes away, and they make your donuts to order with different glazes and toppings... DE-LICIOUS!  We got the kids in the car to head out for donuts the morning of the Fourth, and when we passed the gas station at the corner, Carter started freaking out.  If we ever go out for donuts (when it's not 4th of July), it's to the corner Cruizers gas station... so classy, I know.  Carter wanted nothing to do with donuts from the Fractured Prune... he wanted gas station donuts!  

After braving a 20 minute drive with a screaming 3 year old, we finally arrived at what was supposed to be The Fractured Prune.  It was gone.  Replaced by a Chinese restaurant.  Not exactly what I was wanting for 4th of July breakfast.

For Plan B, we headed to a Dunkin' Donuts, where we all partook of donuts, but Scott and I were very disappointed with the quality of the donuts.  Carter was right.  We should have just gotten Krispy Kremes at the corner gas station.  The kids didn't seem to mind the dry, bland donuts, though.

 After disappointing donuts, we headed home to load up the car with the kids' bikes.  I had heard of what sounded like a fun 4th of July parade in downtown Durham.  This turned out to be LOADS of fun: buying some delicious tomatoes at the Farmers Market, decorating bikes with eco-friendly leftovers from the Scrap Exchange, checking out fire trucks, being the first riders in the little parade, free popsicles... 



My 3 boys left that afternoon soaked to the core.  The little boys rode home naked...didn't think that was such a good idea for Scott.  Might be hard to explain the whole situation to the officer that pulls you over.  

After some much needed naps, we headed over to my parents' house for a grill out with the Powells (who are expecting their twin girls any day now!), the O'Nans, and the Booths (my parents's neighbors).  We finished the night with chocolate cake and sparklers.  It was by far one of the most fun 4th of July holidays that I can remember!

Does it get much more all-American that that?  

Sunday, July 5, 2009

But Mom, all the other kids are doing it...

I've been contemplating this for a while, so here goes... 

I am starting a blog! (Which you obviously know if you are reading this.) I'm very new to this whole process, so forgive my amateur posts.  I've very much enjoyed reading everyone else's blogs, and I hope I can live up to the high standards that have already been set out there.  I look forward to telling the funny and not so funny stories that come out of this adventure of raising a family.