If you guys get to do it: THANKS... If not, shame on you! (just kidding)...
We already got an extra set of rechargeable batteries because we only had two, and it needs four, and we need to buy more memory cards (so far we will be fine with the 256mb, because after what happened to me I will be downloading the pictures the SAME day!!!!).
First, I have to say that there was a mistake in one question which meant that everybody (except for one person) got it wrong... I meant to ask in what year I moved to this country not to this city.. So, the correct answer wasnt even listed... My apologies for that!
Anyway, all of you (except for one person) answered wrong my favorite flavor, which is why this post is named like that... I do love pink (you guys knew that), but I detest strawberry toppings... I LOVE vanilla in everything... Only Cara got that answer correct, and I bet she guessed (edited to say she didnt guessed!! She remembered from the time she came to my house for Mia's birthday party)!!!!!
The only two questions that all of you got correct was the meaning of our last name and my favorite boy's name! Another close one was my best selling product and only one person got it wrong, and the question about my non-existent middle name that only two people got it wrong...
One question that most of you got incorrect was the years that hubby and I will be celebrating soon, but you guys will get to read a post about that pretty soon!
The other four questions where about my daughters, and most of you got wrong different questions... I bet you guys read your answers and read which one was the correct one.
So, who knows me best? I was hoping for some 80's at least, but the best score was 70 which three people got:
* Erica will be getting a credit of $20 that she can use from a list of things that she is ordering from me for her new business!
* Susan will be getting something for her blog... Can be a blinkie OR buttons OR a header, her call...
* Laura... Well, what can a graphic designer give to another graphic designer from a graphic design business?? We will have to talk about your price :)
The first thing about this day is that after 5 years apart, hubby and I first saw each other on a October 27. It was a magical day, and even though we didnt know what to say or how to say it, we both knew what the other one was feeling.
Another important thing about that day is that it was Gabriela's due date and Gabriela's medical birthday. She was suppose to be born that day, which was awesome as her birthday would have been 10/27, while mine is 01/27. Also, as she was born preterm, the doctors used October 27 as her medical birth for milestones. She never really needed the medical date, but who am I to tell that to the doctor, right? I remember that we took pictures of her on October 27 and made it a special day.
Last year, we got the keys October 5th at night, and the lease was running starting October 6th, but we still needed to bring our stuff from the other place, plus the house needed some things fixed. It was on October 27 that we first sleep in our new house. It may rented, but it really feels like home.
I look forward for other great things that will happen to us on October 27, and it will always be marked in our calendars as a very special day.
* Breaskfast: We are working on this.
* Midmorning snack (for Mia and Mimi is around 9:30am, and for Gaby is around 10:30am)
* Lunch (which is always the main food of the day)
* Midafternoon snack
I will try to make a post about the strategies that we are going to come up for each food, and today Im going to talk about the Midmorning Snack in School.
One of the things that is driving us crazy is "packing snacks" for three girls everyday. We find specially insane the amount of money that we are spending on this, because the girls find the snacks, eat them at home, and then after a few days they have NO snack left, when they are suppose to last a couple of weeks.
I have been "cooking" an strategy to solve this situation, and here is how my solution looks like in the top shelve of my kitchen closet:
I know you cant really tell by the picture, but each girl has 10 bags with her name and the date for 10 weeks, which means 2 weeks of school. Hopefully, if my idea works, I will be packing another 2 weeks of snacks by the weekend of the 8th and 9th of November.
Everyday I send three different snacks plus something liquid. Here is what a regular snack has:
* Something salty: Pack of crackers, a bag of pop corn, crackers with cheese, breadsticks with cheese dip......
* Something sweet: Strawberry cookies for Gaby, Chocolate cookies for Mia, and Vanilla cookies for Mimi... Also, it could be a small box of cereal, pudding, or a plain cupcake as a special treat for one day.
* A fruit: We normally alternate with apples and bananas, and sometimes is a fruity yogurt).
* Juice: We try to send them a variety of juices, and they mostly get Orange, Grape, Apple, Peach, or Strawberry with Carrots (Gaby's favorite).
* Water: We have been lacking with the water, as both water bottles got lost... We need to buy new ones as I like them to have water ALWAYS.
We were making the juice at home and serving it to each in a juice bottle, but everyday for dinner they will drink the remaining juice from the container, and I really dont want them to have juice two times a day. For a few weeks, we will be getting the juice boxes, until they forget about asking for juice in the house.
Mimi also takes milk to school and a sippy cup (thanks God for powder milk), and I fill out the powder containers everyday. Mia gets a milk box (pictured) that she get before her afternoon nap in school before we picked her up...
I will also continue to look for more ideas for fast and healthy snacks for them, and why not, for us too!
Life with three little ones in preschool, and a mommy and a daddy with two full time jobs (I have the school plus my graphic design at home, and hubby has the school plus he is the director of the school's Afterschool Program), it sure is a busy one. The good thing is that we are young, in love, and willing to make it work.
In light of my health problems, we know there are several things that need to be done to reduce to stress level of the house, and still be able to do everything that needs to be done. Hubby and I were making a list of those things and we will work on, little by little, until we get on track.
We understand that we need to "bloom" into a healthier family with less stress, which will make us a happier family. I will make posts of the things we will accomplish, little by little, and our goal is to "Bloom the buds into happy Flowers".
If you notice the new logo, it has “buds” instead of flowers, but it still has the same colors: Pink for Mimi, Red for Mia and Purple for Gaby.
Have in mind, that I WONT be changing my business name… This is ONLY for my family blog.
I havent taken the test results to my uncle, so I dont have a medical analysis just yet, but the results does have the parameter and everything looks in place. The thyroids are close to be low, but are still in normal range.. He will tell me what that means.
The only thing that are outside of parameter is the cholesterol. The LDL is the bad cholesterol, and I have it in normal range, but the DHL which is the good cholesterol, I have it low. Looks like I dont eat enough food good cholesterol.
I have been reading online and it says that the low DHL levels are related to heart disease, so who knows if my problem is there. It also says that things that help to higher the DHL levels are quitting smoking (and I dont smoke), drink alcohol (this is very funny as I dont drink any alcohol) and exercising (which I havent been doing). So, out of those three things, the only thing that can be really affecting me is my lack of exercising.
I bet my fingers are in VERY good condition of so much typing, and my hands are in very good shape with all the designing done with the mouse, but I need to get everything else in my body to exercise (my poor elliptical machine is collecting dust bunnies downstairs).
Anyway, I will wait to hear from my uncle and I will take it from there... He may send me to an endocrinologist. Promise to keep you guys updated!
All my daughters love the water... It is part of their nature, on their genes. Hubby's life turned around pools since he younger than Gaby until we moved to this country. My sister in law is still working in pools, and it is just what they love to do... My daughters all have that, but the love for water that Mimi feels goes beyond of any love Mia and Gaby can ever imagine to have for the water.
If you remember the post when I mentioned 7 facts about her, I mentioned that she is the only one of my daughters that doesnt get bothered when the water goes in her face... She also blows and hold her breath correctly, and nobody taught her that. She just does it naturally.
Today I had the camera again, because I needed to download some pictures, and decided to take a few pictures to "prove" her LOVE for the water... Here is one:
He also sent me for a thyroid's test, because thyroid's problems is one of the causes of heartbeat frequency...
Here are the rules:
1. The winner can put the logo on his/her blog.
2. Link the person you received your award from.
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4. Put links of those blogs on yours.
5. Leave a message on the blogs of the persons you've nominated.
Now, you guys now I love all your blogs, but I just can choose seven... Last time, when I got the Kick Ass Blogger award, I nominated: Heather, Nicole (the one that just gave me this award), Sadie, Cindy, and Kate. This means that they all know that I love their blogs, and I dont have to nominate them again....
This time, Im awarding some other seven blogs that I also love:
* Jamie at The Love Family
* Flower at the Life of a Drama Queen Working mom to Gianna and John
* Erica at Life of a First Time Mommy
* Susan at Life with my 3 Ro's
* Laura at The Daily Giggle
* Tara at A husband, 3 daughters... Oh yeah... Then me
* Kelly at A Canuck in Cancun
Hope you guys enjoy your awards, post them on your blog AND give it away too!!! In other words, I hope you guys play along!
Also, Gaby has been asking for a few months now to get a haircut like Mia, and I always said no, specially since I know how much she will love to have the hair longer (as she asks for braids a lot, but I struggle to get them done with her hair so short). Anyway, since we started talking about eye patches and eyeglasses, I started thinking that it may be a good idea to cut her hair in a way that doesnt go to her face.... There is a lot of times when she is doing her homework that I see her hair in the middle and she struggles, and even though I know there are a lot of other ways to solve this situation (like forcing her to have her clippies or bows on all the time), I talked to hubby to see if he agree with it. At first he said no, but then I explained him what I was thinking about the eyeglasses and he also thought it was a good idea...
So, to the hair salon we went! Here is Gaby before the haircut:
Here is the best shot I could get of Mia (she was reading a Barney book that was way more interesting than looking at mommy for a picture):
We are still very unsure about Gaby's hair. She really looked better with her longer hair, but we both know we dit it for the best. She looks way younger now, and just like other child, and now looks more like Mia too..
Here she is before she left the house (You guys cant harldy notice but she has a necklace around her foot too:
On my way to drop off the girls to school, Gaby noticed that I had "blood" in my right eye. It was a broken capilar and hubby suggest that I took my blood pressure with the school's nurse, as soon as I get to work. Funny thing was that the night before was the first night in MONTHS that I went to sleep early, and that morning was going just fine. So, I was not upset and just fine.
Pirates wear eyepatches, so what better way to help her with this is to tell her that she is playing to be a pirate... So, I decided that she was going to be a pirate for the costume parade at school, and Mimi and Mia would be Fairies (not that there is a real relation between pirates and fairies, but there is pirates and fairies in Peter Pan).
Mimi and Mia will wear tutus made by me (first time trying, wish me luck), and Gaby will be using an Elizabeth Swann costume (from the Disney Movie: Pirates of the Caribbean).
I have never seen the movie, but Gaby IS a pirate in the caribbean, as she LIVES in the Caribbean... This movie even have scenes filmed in this country, plus it looks like this pirate has a great personality... It says that she is "spirited and independent-minded", and also says that "Even after becoming a pirate, she retains her sense of propriety, as well as her loyalty and compassion for loved ones", wich is exactly how I want Gaby to be, even if she is a pirate.
Cant wait for the costume to get here! and thank God for Ebay, and the seller who had it on a VERY good price.
I knew it wasnt going to work much at that time, because it was end of the school year, and Mia was going to have changes after school was over, and I was right... After doing an awesome job in school, her training was delayed because either hubby or the summer camp where she attended a few times were not consistent enough (adding a picture to make it fun but of course, this is not Mia... it is just a cute picture from the net).
I will take Gaby to the eye doctor next Tuesday, as the eye doctor evaluation needs to be done 48 hours after the Cyclopegic Refraction Test, and she doesnt work on Monday. I will update you guys then.
EDITING because of a lovely comment I just got:
* Im talking about the girl from the "Eye Test" that we did to Gaby, not the guy that snatched the purse.
I found the video on You Tube, and I thought it was nice for you guys to listen it… It starts on minute 1:15, but it is worth the wait if you have never listened to it.
Today, the girls had a playdate at my cousin’s house because of Gaby’s birthday, but Gaby also had to go to the eye doctor for her to check the results of the exam. So, I drop hubby, Mia and Mimi at my cousin’s house and left with Gaby to the eye doctor.
Hubby rolled the windows down because we were running out of gas and I was going to put the gas on my way to the eye doctor. I was in the most crowded and long highway of the country (for those who actually know DR it was in the 27 de Febrero almost with Privada). There was a lot of traffic and we were in a red light. I was chatting with Gaby about the school, when a guy came in a motorcycle through my window and tells me that there is something wrong with my tire. When I look, I hear somebody who screams to me: Lady, they are taking away your purse!!!!!!!!!!!!! I turned only to see another guy in another motorcycle speeding up and gone with my purse. We were still in red and tons of cars on the front, and there was nothing I could do to go after him.
I cried, Gaby cried, and there was nothing we could do about it. I started going around everywhere but I was just too crushed and I needed that the most important thing at the moment was to cancel the credit cards.
I remember that just minutes before I left my office, I put my camera inside my purse and said to myself: This eye doctor visit will tell me if my daughter needs glasses, I better take my camera with me. So, that guy not only took the money that I took out earlier that day to pay 3 large bills (phone/DSL, electricity and water), but he also took my most precious material thing and one of the most precious non-material things: He took my CAMERA, and the PICTURES from Gaby’s party in it!
In just a couple of months, Gaby wont remember her party, and there wont be pictures to help her to remember, there wont be pictures to show to my mom who couldnt attend the party, there wont be pictures to show to my in-laws, there wont be pictures to show off in my blog (which you guys know Im planning to print), there wont be pictures for a thank you notes, and definitely there wont be pictures to remember that they day actually happened!
Gaby said to me crying: "Mom, that guy that took away your purse is really bad... Somebody should take his family away from him". Of course, I teared up more.
Gaby's results from the test were there too, and they were gone. I went to my mom's house because it was close by to cancel all the credit and debit cards... I also called the place where I did Gaby's test, and they confirmed what I knew: They give the patients the original print out from the machine, and they dont keep record of it, as the one that keeps the record is the eye doctor. Needless to say, that expensive and traumatic experience for Gaby would have to be repeated.
Right now, we are in a position (especially after losing the money to pay the bills) where we wont be able to afford a camera for a bit... So, it will be a pretty sad blogging experience, and I know it will be difficult for me to want to do anything without having a camera to "make the memory".
Just for the record, here is some of the things we lost:
* Our camera with the memory full of pictures, and my other memory full of pictures too (which was in the inside pocket of my purse)
* Our only copy of house keys
* 5 insurance cards (will cost around $5 to get new ones, not fun)
* My personal ID (which costs like $20 to get a new one, not fun at all).
* All of our debit and credit cards (including my cards, hubby's cards, my australian card, and even a credit card that belongs to my mom) - Cant begin to imagine how much it will cost to get replacement for all those...
* Sassy's vaccination record
* The business cards for the pediatrician, eye doctor and other doctors that I cant remember
* The bills that I was going to pay with our phone number, address and personal information printed (very fun, not), PLUS the MONEY to pay those bills
I know I have to be thankful because we are fine, but right now, the only thing I can think of, are all the things that I lost, and how it will stay in our memories that Gaby's party NEVER HAPPENED.
My mom invited us to eat out, and Gaby chose to eat Pizza. We had a lot of fun there. Gaby ordered her favorite pizza with italian sausages and I also asked for the other half to be with jam and cheese.
Erica made for her:
We took tons of pictures, but I will talk about them on the next blog post.
Then, when Mimi was born, she was older and even more careful. She was protective and always trying to keep her safe from Camila.
Im sure BOTH sisters will look up after their big sister, and I already have been told in school that she defends them if somebody else is trying to mess with one of them. They may fight, but Im positive that more sisters, they will grow up to be best friends.
Hubby and I were very much in love and pretty sure what we wanted in life, and we were thrilled but pretty much scared of what this change was going to bring to our lives. It was a very hot summer in New Jersey, and as hubby was a lifeguard and swimming instructor, we spent most of our summer from pool to pool. He also did maintenance to lots of pools, and we spent a lot of time in the roads as most of the pools were almost hitting Pennsylvania.
My pregnancy was great, even though I was always alert, trying to avoid anything that could possibly happen. At some point during my third trimester I started feeling discomfort and low back pain, but it was "normal". One night at 36 weeks (just a couple of days before my mom was flying in for 6 weeks) the discomfort was way more intense, and I decided to take a trip to the E.R. Mostly, I just needed to be reassured that everything was just fine, and to be sent back to my house.
That didnt happen! I was having strong contractions every 10 minutes or so, and was already 2 centimeters dialated. They kept me overnight with no food, and when they checked me again I was still 2 centimeters. I signed a released form to be sent home because I was not planning to stay there longer. I mean, I was starving, and also had tons of stuff to do... I was not ready for baby just yet. My mom planned to arrive early and there was tons of things that I wanted to buy with her.
So, as funny as it sounds, here is the agenda of that day:
- Get ready for baby
- Home at 4pm
- Washed my hair
- Hospital to have my baby!!
I knew I was dilating more, and by that time, I was already starting to feel the contractions way more. When I got to the hospital I was already 4 centimeters, and I knew that was it. I remembered that night I called my mom with a calling card from the Hospital, and told her that there may be a baby by the time she gets here at the next day. She was at my aunt's house celebrating a shower for me. They got together to buy presents for Gaby, and she told me that they all prayed together that night.
I was stressed and very anxious, and my progress was sooo slow, that they even gave me something to help me sleep. The morning was looooooooong, and I was very moody... They didnt want to let me walk because I was still early and they wanted the baby to bake a bit longer, but suddenly my water broke, and that was really it. After that, they knew nothing was going to stop Gaby from being born, so they let me walk to make things a bit faster.
I remembered that I was holding it together without pain medications, but the nurses kept insisting if I wanted the epidural. They insisted so much that I decide it to let them put it to me, even though I was still holding it together. Then, the anesthetist lady upset me because she wanted my EMT hubby out of the room... He was an EMT for Christ Sake, he was not going to faint! So, I decided not to get it because I didnt want to stay alone in there... I remember I was in a lot of pain in my hands because of the IV. Of course, just after she left, the pain started getting unbearable and I had to agree on getting the epidural without hubby present.
A couple of friends went to pick up my mom to the Airport, and my mom got straight to the Hospital when I was already 9 centimeters. It was a bit over 3:00pm when I hit 10. My mom and hubby were pushing with me, and Im positive that it was a team job. I cant even imagine how I would have manage to give birth without their help. We ALL pushed for over an hour. Gaby was born at 4:21pm weighting 6 pounds, 6 ounces and 19.5 inches long. She didnt cried right away, but she got an 8-9 Apgar score.
Hours passed and my baby wasnt with me. I complained and complained and nobody was giving us clear info. Then, the doctor in charge came to talk to me. As they anticipated, she developed Neonatal Respiratory Distress Syndrome, and she needs to spent some time in the NICU. That hospital had an space for only 4 babies, and it was full already. They called an ambulance to transport her to St. Joseph Children's Hospital, two hours away! They took her for me to see her, and check bracelet ID numbers. I still needed to stay in the hospital, so suddenly I have no baby in my belly, and no baby in my arms!! It was hard!
Hubby left with Gaby, and I stayed with my mom. Hubby promised not to be apart from her and to keep me updated, and he did. It was hard not to have my baby, but at least hubby was there for her.
A few days later, we all went home, and breastfeeding was a total failure. After much frustration, we decided to let formula to take over, and Gaby was an all time feeder and she was never full. Until now she is still a milk freak, and she doesnt make negotiations that puts her milk in danger. She is a very smart girl, and even though she has gone through so much in her short life, she is so full of life.
She is a strong willed girl, always ready to let her creativity fly away. She loves motor gross activities and can be a very sweet and loving girl. She loves her sisters to death, and even though she loves all her grandparents a lot, she had a weakness over her paternal grandfather (my father in law). While she was little, she used to be a daddy's girl, but now she has become a mommy's girl. She loves sports, and we cant wait to see what sport she will prefer while growing up. She loves dogs like nothing else in the world, and she is a happier girl since she has one at home.
Gabriela: We learned how to be parents with you, and we promise to do our best. You are the best big sister both of your sisters can ask for. We love you very much, and we cant wait to see all the big things that we know you will do as you continue to grow up. Keep it up!!
We went to Business Mail to pick up Cara and Erica's gifts that they sent my mail, plus some goodies for the party, including some ponies that Gaby will give to her friends at school. We also spent lots of gas going from one store to the other trying to find horses or ponies for the boys that were not from My Little Pony, as those were too girlie. I never imagine that picking up regular horses was going to be so difficult... All the stores had packages with several animals and one horse, and I was not planning to spent a lot of money buying several packages just to get ONE horse from each... Finally we found them, even though I still had to buy two mixed packages, and the girls will have a nice addition to their farm!
Then we went to the vet for Sassy's shots... Both vets were amazed how she didnt even make a sound when they put her both shots... They told me that most dogs cry, especially with the second one... They gave her a treat for that! She also gained 4 pounds in 3 weeks!!! So, she went from 4.5 to 8.5 pounds... She is going to be one BIG dog!!!!
The eye doctor thinks it could be hereditary because I have eye problems myself, and also because of her premature condition when she was born. She told me that 5 or 6 years of age was the average age to develop this (or at least to show it).
She prescribed her to use an eye patch for 5 straight hours during the day (if is in school hours better), and to rest during the weekend. The patch should be used in the "good eye" so the "weak eye" does an effort to see straight (hope my explanation makes sense). She also told us that the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus just found out 18 months ago, that there is a relation between Amblyopia and intoeing, so she thinks her walking will improve a lot once she start the eye treatment.
She also sent her for a Cyclopegic Refraction Test, and even though I have the machine's print out on hand to handed in to the eye doctor, I have no idea what all those numbers means! I promise I will update Monday or Tuesday when I hear from the doctor.
Today was that FIRST meeting at "a school" regarding one of my daughters behaviors, and even though it wont be the last, I hope there is no need to do any more. I have my feet on the ground, and I know Gaby more than any person in the world. I know how she behaves, and I would never be one of those mothers on denial, and wont ever admit that their child has a problem of any magnitude.
Of course, that doesnt mean that I like to hear other people complaining about my kid (it's like Im the one that is allow to do that), but this meeting had such a positive approach that I was sure it was going to bring lots of positive things. On the meeting were present: Gaby's English teacher (who is her homeroom teacher), the principal, the kids psychologist from school, plus hubby and I.
First of all, Gaby has shown to be a very smart girl, and she amazes her teacher with her English skills. Honestly, she has been speaking English so good lately, that it amazes us too. She forms complete sentences and uses: "the", "is", "a" correctly. Her issues comes when is time to writing because she doesnt want to, even though she knows how to do it (which we all think can be relate to her eyes problems). The principal also recommended me her cousin who is an excellent pediatric eye doctor, and we will be taking her later on.
Gaby also has a situation with following rules. She knows all the rules, and she can tell you the rules and even the consequences if you dont follow them, however she still has a hard time following them, and has been disturbing her classroom, and sometimes they have to send her to the hall, or even to the Principal or Counselor's office.
I have tried many different behavior systems, but the only thing that I have never tried is to unite the system with the school. We all agree that Gaby needs consistency and she needs to have the same rules at school and at home, and she needs to have the same boundaries.
As per the principal's proposal, we will be doing the red/yellow/green light behavior system. Gaby's major goal is to learn to follow instructions, and this is a very good method for it. There are several explanations of the system, but here is what it is.
RED/YELLOW/GREEN LIGHT BEHAVIOR SYSTEM:
Gaby starts the day in green, and she wants to keep it in green. The only way to keep it green is following instructions. While she is in green she needs to be praised. When there is an instruction that needs to be followed, and she refuses to follow it, she will be reminded that if she doesnt follow the instructions she will be moved to yellow, and what that means. If she doesnt follow the instruction anyway, she will be moved to yellow. Then, she can either start following rules and move to green, or she can continue not following instructions and be moved to red. With red there is always a negative consequence (which she should already know in advance).
The school will have their "traffic lights" and we will have ours (and we all agree my mom should have hers too)... We agreed that it will be too hard on them if the lights continue from home to school. I think it was a great meeting and we are all looking forward the best for Gaby.
I will also make a chart to keep track of how many days she has been able to go to bed in green. At the end of the week (and later on at the end of the month) she will have a bigger reward for having the most lights in green.
Birthdays and Christmas are very important to me, and I want to pass that to my daughters too. We have celebrated Gaby's birthday each year, and even though this year we are planning something smaller, I want her to know that we will celebrate her birthday!
This year, we decided to celebrate it at school... As her actual birthday in on a Sunday, we will be having some family time (we have some options, but still havent decide what we will do), and then she will have her "party" at school...
This year, she is having a My Little Pony party, and it has been very exciting... She was suppose to have a Pink Poodle party, but then she wanted something with purple... so, after browsing around, I saw that My Little Pony decor has purple, and we all loved the idea.