Friday, December 19, 2008

Who cares about Santa? Sissy is coming to town!!



Emma Kate could care less about the upcoming visit from the Big Ho Ho. Wanna know why? Because she knows that tomorrow her sweet sister is coming home! We have a super fun weekend filled with most of Emma Kate's favorite people in the entire world: Daddy, MeMe, Hoppy and Sissy. We are doing all kinds of fun-holiday filled suprises and then we will come home for a "relaxing" week until Christmas. It WILL NOT be fun saying goodbye to sissy on Christmas morning, but at least we get a wonderful week with her.

I am so excited to have both of my girls for Christmas. Although we usually have Ashley for a longer time at the holidays, it has always been after Christmas. This year, we get to do fun things like bake cookies for Santa and wrap presents and shop for daddy's present before Christmas.

There have been times when being a step-mom has been hard. NOT because of Ashley, because she is the sweetest, kindest, loving step-daughter I could have asked for. But the schedules and laws and other grown-up-stuff can sometimes seem like too much to handle. But then, I take a step back, and I realize I am so blessed to have Ashley in my life and Emma Kate is so blessed to have her as a big sister. Although we do not see her nearly as much as we like, I know that Emma Kate and Ashley have a special bond that only sisters have.


My heart is full of excitement and joy knowing that in just a few short hours, my family will be complete for the holidays. I cannot imagine a better gift.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrr.


Mikey T is cold. Well, he will be getting warmer soon because he will be on a plane heading home in an hour. Mikey T has been in Denver, CO all week for a work conference. Even though Mikey T was born in Ohio, he has spent the majority of his life in Alabama and Florida. The man had no appropriate winter clothing. The night before he left, he told me the forecast for when he landed was -19*. So I "sprang to me sleigh" and headed to the mall. I decided that in lieu of NCAA 2009 for the Playstation III, his Christmas gift was going to be a new coat and he was getting it early.
When Mikey T landed in Denver, it was indeed -19*, snowing fiercely and it felt like -30*. But he was warm in his new present and he made it through the week without freezing to death or coming down with any cases of hypothermia.
Meanwhile in the 70* one day and 30 * the next day weather here in Bama, I got a nice case of Strep and a sinus infection. I loaded up on shots and antibiotics and nasal sprays and decongestants and am back at work today.
Mike T will be in Alabama this afternoon and we cannot wait to have him home!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Semi-Success Santa


Well, we did it. Kind-of. Our first attempt at Santa with Emma Kate was NOT successful. But, when Joseph and Matthew and Sean agreed to go with us, we at least got her within a 5 foot radius of the big Ho-Ho.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Oh no she didn't.

Sunday night, Emma Kate asked for a snack before dinner. She came to the kitchen, asked for a 'nanna (doing business as a Banana), so I peeled her a 'nanna, put it on her princess plate and put it on her little table in the living room. I turned on the TV (shich I knew she wouldn't watch), and tried to do some laundry.

As I was putting my whites into some hot water, I heard a crunching noise. I looked over and Lucy was sitting, sleeping in her chair. I continued to hear some crunching and I thought to myself, "A banana doesn't crunch?!"I walked over to Emma Kate's table and realized that she had Lucy's food bowl and was eating one piece of dog food for every bite of banana. Lovely.

I thought of all of you first, and I snapped a picture. Then Emma Kate and me had a long talk about Lucy's food versus Emma Kate's food.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

40 Things...

So, I was just "tagged" in an email to tell 100 things about myself. Um, no. That bores even me. So, instead, I am going to tell 10 things about each person in my family: Mikey T, myself, Ashley and Emma Kate. I will try to focus on things you do not know....here goes.

Mikey T:

1. He and his brother work for the same company, ADT.
2. He loves the PlayStation 3. He plays until the weee hours of the morning.
3. We are very competitive in the video gaming world. We used to play Madden 94 on the Sega instead of go to movies like most normal teenage couples.
4. I can beat him at Tiger Woods---any year.
5. One time, he was playing in a golf tourney in Tennessee and they had to stop because a man had robbed a bank, escaped on foot, and was hiding somewhere on the golf course. They caught him hiding in a creek just off the 10th green. Playing resumed.
6. I cut his hair. OK, I shave his head.
7. He takes very good care of me when I am sick. He is a much better nurse than I am. And a better patient than I am.
8. His dad is his hero. And I agree.
9. His pelvis is still broken.
10. He is my best friend.

Me:
1. I have OCD. Not to a debilitating extent, but it is noticeable. This could be ten things on its own. A few of my OCDs include--any screen around me has to be smudge proof. This is getting harder with all the tech gadgets being touch screen. Ick. My blinds have to be facing down. If they are facing up, I get queasy. I have a thing for even numbers. I count stairs. I look at the corners of every room I enter. There are more, I know, I am worse than Monica on friends.
2. I graduated in Political Science which only required one math class and now I work for the College of Science and Mathematics.
3. I have to stay and sing the Auburn Alma Mater even after a horrid loss.
4. I want to learn more about photography and I want a super-duper camera.
5.My mom had poison control on speed dial after I ate a glass, Christmas tree ornament, dipped dogwood berries in expired pepto bismol and ate them and talked my older brother into cutting off the bottom of a children's Tylenol bottle so I could eat them....all. I wonder where Emma Kate gets it from?
6. I have three different novels floating around in my head and will probably never sit down to write them.
7. My best friend from college had so much in common it was scary. We are both democrats, don't talk to our fathers, have random medical problems, our mothers are teachers, are creative and crafty, dig politics, and the list goes on.
8. I only have one saliva gland. You have two.
9. I eat salt and sour cream on everything. Anything.
10. I hate mayonnaise and mushrooms. Together or separate.

Ashley:

1. She is the most talented dancer I have ever seen. And I watch a lot of "So you think you can dance."
2. She is super smart--always on the honor roll.
3. She is a great big sister.
4. She never forgets anyone's name.
5. She had an outy belly button, until she had an emergency appendectomy and now she has an inny.
6. She could stay in the pool from sun up to sun down.
7. She can beat her Hoppy at pool/billiards.
8. She can beat anybody at Wii bowling or tennis.
9. She loves board games. We play board games every time she is home---all day and all night.
10. We miss her everyday.

Emma Kate:

1. She was a preemie.--but she weighed 7 lb., 9 oz.
2. She had level 4 reflux and threw up 10 times a day until she was 8 months old.
3. She learned to crawl at 5.5 months, one day before I had knee surgery.
4. She skipped baby food. She went from reflux formula to table foods(as per the doctor's orders and because she refused to let me feed her).
5. She still calls me Amy about 50% of the time.
6. She kisses a picture of her sister goodnight every night. She started this on her own.
7. She prays every night for Joseph and Matt Matt. Others come and go in her prayers, but Joseph and Matt Matt are constants.
8. When she was 18 months old, she opened my grandmother's front door and walked halfway down the street to my mother's house before we even knew she was gone. We didn't even know she could open the dang door!
9. She has asthma and eczema. Boo.
10. She has a high tolerance for pain. I guess because her stomach and esophagus were on fire for the first year of her life. She doesn't cry when she gets a shot...just really, really mad.

So, that is it. 40 things that you may or may not have already known about me and mine.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

TAG you're it!


A very good friend and fellow blogger tagged me for this photo thing. You have go to your pictures and post the 6th photo in your 6th folder. Well, this has already been blogged about, so no description is really needed.

"Ucy" the Wonder Dog



In 2002, I got Lucy. She was a six month puppy that was the cutest dern thing I had ever seen. It wasn't long before me and Unc (although he wasn't Unc at the time, he was Michael, my brother who lived with me at the time) realized that Lucy was special.

It was like Lucy named herself. I brought her home and walked downstairs to Unc's room and he said, "she looks like a Lucy." We ran through a list of some other names, but it was clear from the start that she was Lucy.

Lucy, was a very quick learner. (Except on potty training.) I had only had her two months before she was sitting, laying down, rolling over, jumping and speaking on command. And that was just the beginning. By the time she was a year old, she was doing all kind of tricks--people are still impressed with her super-tricks.

She didn't potty train so well, and she was a chewer. Once, while Mikey T and I were in our on-again-off-again stage, he had some brand new, very expensive, golf shoes at my house. He came over one day after work and one of the shoes was shredded to pieces. It was FootJoy minus the Joy. He was not happy. It was pretty tense between Mikey T and Lucy the Wonder Dog for a while, but they worked through it.

Lucy is also very protective. She once bit a man because she thought that he was hurting Unc during a game of basketball. I was sitting with Lucy and had her by the leash while the guys played ball. Unc had the ball and someone went to slap it out of his hands. MISTAKE. In less than one second, Lucy had broken free from my grip, wrangled free from her collar, run to the basketball court and bit the guy's hand. There was blood and it was not pretty. Luckily, one of our neighbors was a medic in the Air Force and he took care of the wound. The guy was very forgivving of Lucy (and me) and we did not have to quarantine her and he did not sue me. Whew.

Anyway, when Emma Kate was born, Lucy had some adjusting to do. She was no longer the cener of our household. However, she adjusted well.

Once Emma Kate became mobile, it was over for Lucy. She was re-named UCY and Emma Kate adores her. But, she thinks that Ucy is her own personal toy. She rides her. She gets in the chair with her and lays on her, she pulls and pokes and prods. And Ucy just lays there. She never growls. She never gets angry. She just enjoys Emma Kate as much as Emma Kate enjoys her. They are best buds and will be for a very long time.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Feliz Cumpleanos Matteo!!


We do most of our family birthdays in November. Emma Kate, Mom, Matthew, some Aunts and Uncles, etc. This past weekend was the Matthew celebration. Matt-Matt, as he is called, is one of my favorite nephews. Ok, I only have three and they are all my favorites, but, I digress.
This little squirt is just about the cutest, sweetest child you could ever meet. He looks more like Emma Kate's sibling than cousin. He has blond hair and the prettiest blue eyes you have ever seen.
He is a mover & a shaker. It is like music takes over his body involuntarily and he moves like no 3 yea.....oops...4 year old you have ever seen.

So, it was Matthew's choice where we had lunch after church on Sunday and he chose mexican (a kid after my own heart!!) so here are some pics from our fiesta de cumpleanos!

Emma Kate was pooped after the festivities! She fell asleep "reading" her book and it was too cute to pass up.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Why I don't like gravity....

People falling down is just funny. It is. I know it is awful to say that out loud (or in text) but it is just funny when someone goes SPLAT.
So, I thought you would all get a kick out of my morning. I was on campus walking from my office to Haley Center to go see one of my all time fav professors. As I walked across the recently opened concourse--right by the very active student center----I noticed how nice the place looked. There is nothing better than manicured green spaces in front of beautiful brink dorm buildings, in the shadow of the glorious Jordan-Hare stadium. As I walked in front of the bustling student center, I felt my very arthritic right knee start to crumble. It just gave up and I fell down. I was horizontal--face down--legs and arms crumpled into some contortionist fashion underneath me. I was humiliated. It was one of those funny falls, too. Where the person falling loses everything in their arms in a futile attempt to brace their fall and ends up flat on their face. Yep that was me.
It was one of those falls where people RUN over to the fallen idiot to make sure they are ok (which is really just to make sure the person is ok before they start laughing out loud at them, so they are not politically incorrect.)
With a the help of a very polite and non-English-speaking (well, I guess he was polite, he could have been calling me a moron to my face!!) graduate student, I made it to my feet again and collected my things (that were sprawled half-way to the quad) and checked my injuries: Scraped hands, scuffed knees and battered ego.
I turned to look at WHY I had fallen. The lawyer in me frantically looked for that "lip" in the sidewalk, the construction guy's misplaced electrical cord or some foreign substance that contributed to my fall. There was nothing. Just newly paved concrete--flat, bare and perfectly even.
I brushed myself off and gathered my composure and started that dubious task of WALKING again. A sweet student came up to me and told me some LIE about how she just fallen last week. I appreciated her compassion, but c'mon, just let me enjoy my embarrassment alone---do not pity me!!
So, now, almost every joint is aching and I am not happy with gravity or my knee. Maybe I can make it to my car this afternoon in one piece, but I am not all that confident.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Down Memory Lane

SIXTEEN years ago today Mikey T took me on our first date. It was Friday the 13th and the Mighty Warriors were in the State Playoffs (No really, they were, I promise!!). The game was in a not-so-nice part of town, and us JV cheerleaders were not required to attend. Since Mikey T's sport of choice was basketball, he didn't go either. (AND...my mom would not let me go---thank goodness).
So, Mikey T and a friend in a navy blue T-Bird (awesome-ha) took me and my friend Morgan on a hot date. Two high school freshman and two high school juniors in Alabster---our choices were limited.

We headed to another friends house to watch Friday the 13th movies and then out to the local pizza hut to meet up with all of the crazy kids who were allowed to go to the game.

How romanitc, huh?

But, he was a gentleman and he did have me home by 11:00 on the dot. The next day I was out raking leaves with my mom and Mikey T randomly drives by. (I completely think this was a semi-stalking drive-by and he got busted because we were outside!!) I went with him to the grocery store and we went to his house to watch some college football with his parents. From then on we were pretty inseparable for a little over a year. There were homecomings and proms and mixed tapes featuring Air Supply, PM Dawn, BoyzIIMen and Whitney Houston. There were basketball games and dance competitions and golf tourneys (Mikey T was still breaking golf clubs back then). There were Friday nights at Pizza Hut, very dramatic break-ups and trips to the beach (which included Mikey T's food poisoning and a day spent at the Gulf Shores hospital with me and my mom). There were class rings and notes in between every class. There was NEVER any PDA (because I was a good girl AND my mom had eyes all over the school!) Then there were more very dramatic break-ups and graduations.

Mikey T graduated and went on his life's journey which took him to Auburn, up to Ohio and down to Florida.

I went on my life journeys which included Auburn, Birmingham, and CANADA.

Then, Mikey T ended up back in Birmingham and a chance run-in between our moms at the local grocery store led to us re-meeting.

Who'd a thunk---16 years ago that very high shool drama would lead us to our life now.


**I have a very hilarious prom picture that I will scan later......






Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Inhaler Adventure

Emma Kate had her 2YO "well-baby" check-up yesterday but she was a semi-sick baby. She has had a funky cough and some wheezing for a few days, so I knew what we were in for.

Last year, once we were done with the level 4 reflux-from-hell, we went straight into "she's not two so we don't call it asthma-asthma." She was on liquid albuterol first, then we upgraded to the inhaler with the mask. Emma Kate figured out the inhaler pretty quickly and we discarded the mask in no time.

So, come summer, we had no more symptoms and we did not have an inhaler for 6 months!! I thought she "outgrew" the "not-asthma" like most kids do before they are two.

Yesterday, however, the doc (who is also my friend) said "yep, she is wheezing in there."

Re-enter inhaler with chamber mask. I just knew EK would remember ol' red and it would be like old times when she just put it right up to her mouth and breathed in all of that good medicine that opens up her lungs.

Not so much. Her 2-year-old memory had no recollection of that thing. She thought I was trying to kill her. My mom tried the reverse psychology game--you know---"Emma Kate, you can't do the inhaler!! You can't do it, can you?"

Emma Kate sees right through this. But, playing off of the everything is "mine" phase, we went right into.....

Ma-Ma: This is my inhaler.

Emma Kate: No, ma-ma, es my hala.

Ma-Ma: No, it is MYYYYYYY inhaler.

Emma Kate: (now grabbing the thing and putting it to her mouth) No, ma-ma, es miyyyne.



So, we were once again succesful with the inhaler. This morning, when I told her we had to take it to school, she said, "My haler." Hopefully, it remains this easy because it sure does help her (and me and mikey T) sleep!!



Here she is with her blanket for school nap time and her "haler."

Monday, November 10, 2008

The longest weekend ever....


But it was super-fun. It started Friday when I took Emma Kate's Elmo cupcakes to her school. They were super-cute and I was so proud to take them to her class. (If I could add sound effects, it would be brakes screeching here).
Walked in with EK in one hand and Elmo in the other and headed for the front desk lady---who monitors everything that goes through the doors. "These go to TOTS." Just kidding. While they did not contain nut products, they were made in a place that DOES have nut products, and therefore not allowed in EK's classroom. At first I was mad. My perfect birthday weekend was ruined. (OK, so I am a little dramatic sometimes.......a lot of times). But then, I imagined my Birthday Twin's little boy and realized that while I wanted to be the cool mom who brought the super-cute cupcakes to EK's class......I did not want to be the mom that caused a little boy to go into anaphalactic shock. So, I brought them to work, where they were devoured very quickly.

I was successful in EK looking super-cute in birthday outfit #1. (which I did not get a good picture of).

Friday night, we took EK to her first Auburn basketball game. Lots of fun. At first she was skittish because the band was so close and loud, but by the 2nd quarter, she was grooving. She lasted over three quarters, so this was a success.

Saturday, me and mom took EK to the tailgate and opted to take her INTO the game for the first time. She was super-tired and only lasted one quarter....but that was ok. We headed home early and she was asleep before we pulled out of the parking lot. Since it was her "real" birthday we put a candle in an oatmeal cookie and sang happy birthday at exactly 6:19 p.m. She thought this was super-cool.
(Look Ma-Ma, Auburn is actually winning!!)

Sunday morning she was up and at 'em at 6:14 am, which is early for her. So, we decided not to fight it and the fam all got up. We had some last minute cleaning to do before the Elmo bash.

MeMe and Hoppy arrived about 11:00 and no one else existed. The party officially started at 2:00 and the cousins arrived and then no one else existed. She is so in love with my nephews (as am I) that she talks about them all the time. When she does get to see them, it is like being around celebrities. She just stares and follows. She might ask Joseph for his autograph one day.

She loaded up on cake and "prizes" and hammed it up for the camera.

Everyone headed out about 4:30 and daddy and Amy (we are getting better---I was "mommy"about 20% of the weekend) were super-pooped. We missed our two friends (May-May and Graham) but completely understood their not being there. MayMay was chilling at the Peanut festival with the grandparents and Graham is, well, in Singapore. So, we will play with them both very soon.
All-in-all, EK had an awesome birthday and we couldn't have asked for a better time!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Hey Baby


Every morning when Emma Kate gets up and every afternoon when I pick her up from school, I say "Hey Baby." Sometimes she is super cute and she says "Hey Baby" back. I love that, because lets face it, anything is better than "Hey Amy."

This morning I woke up and Emma Kate was in bed with me. Mikey T heard her coughing last night and put her in the bed with me and then he fell asleep on the couch! Well, I roll over when my alarm clock goes off and I cover her up and go get ready. Once I am ready, I grab her clothes and go to wake her up. I brush my fingers across her forehead to wipe her crazy mane out of her face. Her little eyes squinch and then open. A huge grin grows across her face and before I can say anything, she says, "Hey Baby!"

It was too funny. Then, we went through our daily routine. You can tell who is important in Emma Kate's life every morning. Every day, it is the same order........


EK: Errs Daddy?

Amy: He's at work

EK:Errs Untle Midal? (Translation: Uncle Michael)

Amy:He's at his work.

EK: Errs Hoppy? (Mikey T's Dad)

Amy: He's at his house.

EK: Errs Meme? (Mikey T's Mom)

Amy: She's at her house.

EK: Errs MaMa? (My mom)

Amy: She's at her work.

EK: Errs Bean? (My grandmother)

Amy: She's at her house.

EK: Errs Lucy? (Our dog)

Amy: She's right here!!


These are the important folks in her life...the people she needs a daily update on. It is like the president's daily CIA briefing. She wants to know where these people (and dog) are, why they are not with her and when they will be back. And it is in the same order every morning and usually every afternoon on our way home.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

November Rain

So as history has shown in the Thomas-Thompson bunch, November is always a rainy month. Not the water kind; November is when all the "bad" stuff happens in our families.

For example, five years ago this November, my husband (before he was my husband), was in an automobile accident that almost took his life. He and his Toyota truck fought with a tree and the tree won. He spent 29 days at UAB, most of it in ICU and some of it in Spain Rehab. He was critically injured and for the first week or so, it was "touch and go." If you have never been in a "touch and go" situation with someone you love, it is not fun. But, with God by his side, he pulled through. The wreck also taught us all a ton of lessons and pulled out the best in all of us.It really brought his family closer together. It brought me closer to his family and closer to him. His brother came up in the middle of the night and sat by his little brother's side. His mother relied on her faith like she had never before. His dad (AKA, Hoppy) was a rock that most families can only dream about. It made me realize that even though I met this person in high school (then it had been 11 years before) I still loved him and wanted him in my life forever. All of that in November.

November was also the month that my little brother was medically discharged from the Army. To me this was a silent blessing, because he was probably weeks away from heading off to a war zone, but to him this was devastating. After years of heartache and searching, he found something that he loved. And his darn knee wouldn't let him do it. That was hard on the whole family, but especially Michael. And it was November. (Actually the same November as Mikey T's wreck...when it rains it pours).
I could go on about all the hard life lessons we have learned in November. But really, all of that changed on November 8, 2006.

Now, two years later, Novembers have a whole new meaning for me and Mikey T. Novembers are full of joy and love and happiness.

You don't know when you are going through your "Novembers" where they are leading you. But they are simply God's ingredients in his recipe of your life. Standing alone some of the ingredients seem bitter, but when the recipe is complete, you have this wonderful creation. All of my Novembers have brought be here......and this is our wonderful creation.






Monday, November 3, 2008

Candy & Costume Contests

In Lee County, Alabama, Halloween festivities occurred on Thursday due to the all important high school football schedules. So, Thursday afternoon, I got EK from school early and took her home to get her ready for the big night. She loved her costume, so getting ready was actually really easy.

We headed to Auburn U. for the UPC carnival. The first thing EK did was make a mad dash for Aubie. She hugged his neck before she could think about it. Then, when she realized she was hugging him, she froze. She was re-thinking that decision. She slowly backed away and latched on to my leg.

She was a big hit with the Cheerleaders and the Tiger Paws.....and she really liked them too as long as they gave her the goods. She would rummage through their pumpkins full of candy until she found what she wanted, which for some reason was suckers.
One male cheerleader, Jake, tried for an hour to get Emma Kate to come to him, but he was unsuccessful. He finally tried making a trail of tootsie rolls to himself and that semi-worked. She allowed him one high-five and a short pose for a picture, but I don't think they will be long-term buddies.

video

They talked us into the costume contest, so we headed down to the cat-walk. The kids were supposed to head down the catwalk, turn around, and head back to the parent. I didn't think EK was even going to do it, because she was latched onto my leg, but once Miss Auburn University flashed that big bouquet of suckers (that was the grand prize), Emma Kate strutted her stuff down that cat walk. But, instead of heading back to me, she twirled around and then jumped into Miss Auburn's arms and gave her a big hug. Nothing like buttering up to the judges. Needless to say, Emma Kate walked away with a big bouquet of suckers.
Then we headed to "downtown" Auburn to meet up with our friends Ella Grace and May-May (Mary McKinnon). They enjoyed the fun for about 30 minutes until they were ready for food (other than chocolate). May-May and Emma Kate (and parents) headed to the Brick Oven for a little dinner and then home to bed. It was a super fun evening and Emma Kate was super cute. I am already trying to think of next year's costume. Stay tuned.