Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Friday, December 3, 2010

I had Bambi killed.

Tuesday, our neighbor saw in our yard, a deer that was laying down and it looked it might be sick or injured. Over the day, it moved around a little bit, but still came and layed down. The neighbor had called Animal Control, but they couldn't help. That evening, we called a wildlife rescue who said they couldn't come out and help because of the size of the deer. But, they did tell us that we should give it another 24 hours and see what happens. They said that the deer would either 1. die 2. might be in labor or 3. may get up and leave.  If it was still there in 24 hours, they said we should call a State wildlife officer.

Wednesday, we didn't see the deer.  We had hoped that maybe the deer was in labor and had a baby. But, we were at work all day.

Thursday, after going out midday with the kids, I saw the deer. It was snuggled into the bushes by our front door. It didn't move, but I could see it breathing.

I called the Wildlife officer. He said they could not try and rehab the deer because of the overpopulation (A term I disagree with, but I digress.  I mean isn't it the humans that are overpopulated and taking over the deer's territory?) Anyway, he came to our house and he had to put the deer down. I felt really bad, but I hope that I did the right thing. I hope that it ended it's suffering. Being that it was so cold, and it been laying around for a few days, I doubted that it would recover from whatever it was ailing from.

Rest in peace, Bambi.

P.S. -- The kids didn't know anything about what happened. Emmett thought the Wildlife officer had come out the house to make sure everyone was safe and happy.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

What's your personality type?

Have you ever taken the Myers Briggs Type Inventory? We did a modified version today, and while I have done this before, it was interesting to take again and revisit what my type is. I am an INTJ.

Here is a description:
Do you think this sounds like me?

Want to know your type?

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Date Night!

Saturday, the kids schools offered Parents Night Out. From 4-7, they let us bring the kids and they fed them pizza, showed a movie and let them play. It was great! Seth and I were able to go out to a nice restaurant for dinner and a pub for a beer. You really enjoy the ability to have an uninterrupted conversation and enjoy your food while not having to get up to get more milk, wipe hands, or pick up flung food. Ah, it went by so fast. But, it also gave a few minutes to reflect on how lucky we are and what a great little family we have. It was all happy to go and pick up the kids.

I hope they do this again soon!

Sunday, October 10, 2010


It's only at this toddler age can you have thin hair, no waist line, pudgy feet, wear no make-up and have a pot belly and still look so cute!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I love Carters outlet

I buy a good majority of Molly's wardrobe at the Carter's outlet. And for good reason! First, most of their clothes for girls are really cute, made well, and comfortable for play.

Second, it is an outlet, so the prices are great. I bought 4 onesies, 4 shirts, 6 pants, 1 pant/shirt set,  and 1 dress for about $50. That is a good deal.

Also, this outlet store is always well stocked, and they have many items that mix and match. I like this, and it makes it much more likely that when my husband dresses Molly that her outfit will actually match. In addition, I think their sizing is right on.

The boy's clothes on the other hand? Well, the baby stuff is cute, but for my 4 year old's size, not so much. Most of it is just not all that cute, and about 90% of it is sports related. Can't they come up with more things for boys than sports? Just wondering.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

So, about that class.....

I dropped it.

It was WAY too time consuming. If I could go about at my own leisurely pace, I would have enjoyed the topics, but I just can't focus 10 hours a week on that right now. I guess I should have known that, I mean I can't even finish a task most days without an "intermission" to attend to son or daughter. But I really didn't realize just how much time it would require.

Anyway, it was a good experiment. What it did provide me with is the realization of what my priorities are, and what I want to spend my very limited time on. So that's good. And I have a nice new textbook I might read one day....

Sunday, September 19, 2010


One of Molly's first words is: shoes. Should I be worried?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Big Girl

Tonight with our dinner, we all had corn on the cob. Well, except Molly. Molly got cut corn. This apparently just would not do in her world. She had to have corn on the cob just like everyone else. She wanted to be a big girl. So I gave it to her.

It was so cute for her to be so proud to be holding this big corn, but then so funny for her to try and eat it with her little mouth. I think she managed to eat a little. But after that, she discovered that it was even more fun just to bang with it on the table.

It is interesting to see what constitutes being a "big kid" at different ages. For 15 month old Molly, today it was having corn on the cob. For four year old Emmett, it was picking out, and changing his clothes without any help.

Monday, September 13, 2010


Here is the setup: Because I work 12 hour days, my husband is usually the one to drop off and pick up the kids from day care. But, we take turns on picking up a sick child early.

It was my turn last Wednesday. Molly had a stomach bug. I picked her up, then went to Emmett's classroom to get him. As I was waiting in the hallway for Emmett to come, Molly threw up all over me and the floor. Apparently they had macaroni for lunch that day. I would like to add that the last 2 times I picked up a sick child, I was also thrown up on at the school. My timing is impeccable.

However, having to soldier on, I cleaned up with school paper towels, which needless to say, did not provide much absorbency. Once I finally got the kids to the car, and strapped in, I got in the car and decided I would take my shirt off to drive home as not inflict my seat belt with the remnants of the expelled. Who would see, right?

As I approached our house, I spied my father-in-law's truck in the driveway. Crap! I drove past my house and around the block. I carefully put my shirt back on (ugh) and made my way back to the house. It was not until I was in the driveway, that I remembered he had left his truck there because he was travelling with a friend up north. Double ugh. I put that nasty shirt on for nothing.

What's a mom blog without a good barf story, right?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Free doughnuts for a year!

Yes, Chapel Hill now has a Krispy Kreme!! I happen to work in walking distance of that good or bad? There is nothing quite like a hot doughnut, is there?

Even better? Notes from a Mom in Chapel Hill is giving you a chance to win free doughnuts for a year! Check it out:

Good Luck!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

My brain hurts.

After the first week of class, my brain hurts. I think I might have sprained something in there that hasn't been used in a while. I have read several chapters of the text book and am now working on case study questions. I am being asked to calculate total fertility rates, ponder why we calculate fertility and mortality rates differently, and think about how a rate would go up or down in any given circumstance. Ouch.

However, I will say that it is fairly interesting so far. I had no idea that the US does a census every ten years because it is mandated in the constitution to determine who/how many to put in the House of Representatives.

In other news, I am so ready for the heat of the summer to be over. I am looking forward to sweater weather. I want it to cool off a bit so the kids can play outside more. But, those leaves....

Friday, August 27, 2010

Get into art

When is the last time you made art with this much wild abandon? 

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

School is a lot of work.

First day of class. Assignments? Read 41 slides of lecture (this is an internet class). Read Chapter 1 in textbook. Watch a 4 hours film on AIDS. Read an article. Answer case study questions. And then discuss online in small group.

Thank goodness I am just taking one class!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Back to School

It is back to school time. Now that my office is right dab in the middle of a college town, I have seen all the students trickle back into town. Kinda makes me feel old. However, we are never too old to learn, right? So, using my lovely tuition waiver I get as an employee, I am taking a class this semester. Intro to Epidemiology online. It will be useful knowledge for my job, and hopefully just generally interesting. I hope I still  have what it takes to study, etc! I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Monday, August 9, 2010

Rate Limiting Factor

Yesterday, Grandma YaYa came over and visited with the kids allowing Hubby and I to go do a task we have been wanting to get to, but have found very difficult with 2 little ones. Cleaning the garage. A messy garage is just not where you want to have them play. Also, it was really a task that the two of us needed to work on together, so leaving one of us to watch the kids just didn't help all that much.

Let me just say, it is AMAZING what you can get done when you are not having to simutaneously supervise children. Just one hour in the garage and we got so much done! What a rate limiting factor kids can be to project completion. I seriously think it would have taken most of the day to do what we did had we had to watch the kids as well. Is it pitiful that I am excited about having had the opportunity to clean my garage?

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Self Feeding Pros and Cons

Molly is now full fledged eating "real" food! It means I don't have to sit at the table with her and spoon feed her purees anymore. She can feed herself and that is great. However, with this milestone comes a con.

Massive clean up.

Hair, face, hands, arms, ears, elbows, clothes... and that's just Molly. Then there is the table, high chair, bib, and floor. It take a wet paper towel or two to clean her up, a dish cloth to the table and high chair, and a broom to the floor, and sometimes mop or sponge as well. For every meal.

Yes, the bib with the pocket does help. (Why didn't they think of this a long time ago? Genius.) But, really the only thing that would help minimize the mess is to put her in the yard to eat. And I guess that just wouldn't be cool.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Cindy Lou Who

Someone said that Molly reminds them of Cindy Lou Who because of her big blue eyes and long lashes. There is some resemblance. What do you think?

Hmmm... it's an idea for Halloween.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Happy World Breastfeeding Week!

In Honor of World Breastfeeding Week

Did you know?
Evidence shows that early initiation can prevent 22% of all deaths
among babies below one month in developing countries.

Did you also know that the World Health Organization suggests the followoing?

To enable mothers to establish and sustain exclusive breastfeeding for six months, WHO and UNICEF recommend:
  • Initiation of breastfeeding within the first hour of life;
  • Exclusive breastfeeding - that is, the infant only receives breastmilk without any additional food or drink, not even water;
  • Breastfeeding on demand - that is, as often as the child wants, day and night;
  • No use of bottles, teats or pacifiers.
Breastmilk is the natural first food for babies, it provides all the energy and nutrients that the infant needs for the first months of life, and it continues to provide up to half or more of a child’s nutritional needs during the second half of the first year, and up to one-third during the second year of life.

What every family and community has a right to know:
  1. Breastmilk alone is the best food and drink for an infant for the first six months of life. No other food or drink, not even water, is usually needed during this period.
  2. Newborn babies should be given to the mother to hold immediately after delivery. They should have skin-to-skin contact with the mother and begin breastfeeding within one hour of birth.
  3. Almost every mother can breastfeed successfully. Breastfeeding the baby frequently causes production of more milk. The baby should breastfeed at least eight times daily, day and night, and on demand.
  4. Breastfeeding helps protect babies and young children against dangerous illnesses. It also creates a special bond between mother and child.
  5. Bottle feeding and giving a baby breastmilk substitutes such as infant formula or animal milk can threaten the baby's health and survival. If a woman cannot breastfeed her infant, the baby can be fed expressed breastmilk or, if necessary, a quality breastmilk substitute from an ordinary clean cup.
  6. If a woman is infected with HIV, there is a risk that she can pass the infection to her infant through breastfeeding. In the first six months, this risk is much greater if the infant is fed both breastmilk and other liquids and foods than if fed breastmilk alone. Therefore, it is recommended that the baby receives breastmilk alone for the first six months, unless it is acceptable, feasible, affordable, sustainable and safe to give breastmilk substitutes (infant formula) exclusively.
  7. A woman employed away from her home can continue to breastfeed her child. She should breastfeed as often as possible when she is with the infant and express her breastmilk when they are apart so that another caregiver can feed it to the baby in a clean and safe way.
  8. After 6 months of age, when babies begin to eat foods, breastfeeding should continue for up to two years and beyond because it is an important source of nutrition, energy and protection from illness. 

I have posted this before, but I will post again: 101 reasons to Breastfeed

Lastly, read this interesting article. The last line says:  “It’s all there for a purpose, though we’re still figuring out what that purpose is,” Dr. Mills said. “So for God’s sake, please breast-feed.”

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sorting kids clothes: a second job

It sounds easy, right? Sort out the outgrown kids clothes. Well, it's not. Let me know tell you a bit about the (at least) twice yearly process I go through.

The consignment stores are now taking fall clothes which is my cue to start combing through the kids closets. I go through the closets and drawers of each child and take out what is too small. Then I divide the clothes into the fall pile, and the summer pile. The summer pile gets put into a storage bin and gets dealt with in the early spring since I can't consign any of it right now. The fall pile (and anything that was put in a storage bin last fall) is now ready to be sorted. I have to ask myself the following questions:

Is this in good condition/no stains? If not, it goes to donation pile. If it is in good condition, is it an item that a) a friend could use? or b)is it nice enough that the consignment store will take it? After that decision is made it either goes in the friend bag, or the consignment pile. If it goes into the consignment pile, it also has to be put on a hanger. (Do I have enough hangers? What if the hanger has a different size listed on it?-- then I take of the size clip. What is the best hanger for this item?)

Other things I think about as well is whether an item that was worn last fall may still fit this fall, and for how long? Since my son is not outgrowing his clothes quite as fast now, this can be a tricky question.

Further, once all the sorting is done, the closets and drawers need to reorganized, and made ready for the upcoming seasons clothes. At that point I can see what they will need for the next season.
(not my clothes... for illustrative purposes only)
Oh, and then I need to haul all the various clothes to the donation center, to my friends, and to the consignment stores! With two kids in tow! Sheesh!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Back from the beach!

We're back from the beach. It was a good vacation... the weather was nice, we got to visit with family, and the kids had a lot of fun. Thankfully, both kids loved being on the beach this year. Emmett love to play in the sand and jump the waves. And Molly just took it all in and enjoyed it all. We visited a water park in Myrtle Beach.... it was good experience, but I don't think we'll take the kids back there until they are a good bit older. Emmett and I went to a planetarium which was interesting, even though the IMAX movie was a bit overwhelming for him. And the rest of the time we were on the beach or just relaxing. It all went by way too fast. Can't believe tomorrow is Monday already.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

a little lax

McGurkus has been spending some time at the beach... and less time on the computer. Therefore, less blogging. However, I have had plenty of time to think about things I want to blog about! Coming up soon.... beach with the kids, unsolicited advice about parenting, more favorite kids items, favorite books.

Until then, take a look at this great post:
Why having a toddler is like being at a frat party

Monday, July 12, 2010


2nd week of the new job. So far, so good. Too early to give an accurate representation of what it will be like, but outlook is good.

3 days left until we head to the beach! Yea! Looking forward to vacation time. Really hoping for both the kids to enjoy it this year. Last year with a 6 week old, I was basically hanging out inside nursing and watching TV. Should be a lot more fun this time!

1 year until Emmett goes to Kindergarten!

1 year until my 20th high school reunion. Can I really be that old?

And only 164 days until Christmas. :)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Tolerance, or lack thereof.

Today, my 4 year old's whining seems whinier. And my 1 year old's crying is louder and screechier. Or is it just me?

I think it is just me. I am not sure why, but it is just one of those days. Tolerance is not something I seem to have a lot of right now. Maybe it is because vacation is near and I am ready to go. Maybe it is because my project list is so long, but I seem to never be able to cross many things off of it. Maybe it is because I have had one too many nights lately with broken sleep. Who knows.

Tomorrow is a new day.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

What do you do when you want a mini van, but you don't want a mini van?

You buy a microvan! The Mazda5. 

Ok, I know you are thinking about that previous post where I said I wanted a minivan. Well, the Mazda5 is really a mini minivan and it had all the things we liked about a minivan, without the downsides. I shall explain. As I mentioned in my earlier post, these were my reasons for wanting a minivan:

1. To be able to drive to the beach for vacation without having things shoved in the door pockets and under the passengers feet.
2. So that the back of my seat won't get kicked as easily
3. So it will be easier to toss the kids in with the sliding doors.
4. So we can buy and haul large items from Home Depot and Ikea.
5. So we can have guests go with us somewhere without having to take multiple cars.

We get all those met with the Mazda. 
And here are the bonus points:
1. It doesn't really look like a minivan. (Double bonus: my husband doesn't mind driving it since it is less soccer mom-ish.)
2. It is easier to drive and park. 
3. It gets much better gas mileage. 
4. It is at a much better price point than a regular minivan.

We still get a third row, sliding doors, etc. The only thing you sacrifice is less cargo space (but is still a good bit of space, if you don't plan to use your third row very often). I think it will be great for our family of four. 

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


What do you do with 30 lbs of cucumbers?

Make lots of pickles! (We made 12 jars, and only used about half the cukes)

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Friday, July 2, 2010


I am sitting in the hammock as I am typing this. The birds are chirping. The weather is perfect. Someone is mowing their lawn in the distance.

Molly fell asleep on the way home in the car, so I opened the car door and am letting her sleep while I keep an eye on her from the hammock. So relaxing.... so needed after this week! And we have a long holiday weekend! Yea!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Nutshell Update

It has been one of those weeks. Really.

Saturday, Molly came down with a fever (Which I was thinking is probably side effect of Thursday's immunization). Emmett got a cough. Spent all weekend with lumpy little girl on my lap.

Monday, thought Molly was better and took her to school. 9:30am-- School calls. Molly fever is back. Go to pick up the kids, get thrown up on by Molly, and the school thermometer says 106! I freak out and go straight to the Doctor's office. (Temp at the doctor's office was 103.7) We get Tylenol and diagnosis of ear infection for Molly and potential strep throat for Emmett. After a not fun trip to Walmart including a snafu with the insurance card, we go home with 2 prescriptions of zithromax at full price.

Tuesday, I work in the morning, Emmett goes to school, and Seth and Molly stay home. In the afternoon I switch off with Seth to take care of Molly. When I get home, the house seems a bit warm. Come to find out the AC has stopped working. Gets up to 87 degrees in the house. Remember Molly with a fever? We end up with a field trip the Holiday Inn Express for the evening.

Wednesday, everyone to work and school. But, school calls at 2pm because Molly has slight fever. (We also notice that Molly now has a total of 8, yes 8!, teeth coming in all at the same time!) Seth picks kids up. I am finishing my last day at work at my current job. Before leaving for the day, am informed that I40 is shut down because of a suspicious object (possible pipe bomb) so I have to take 70 home. After an hour commute, I get home to my hot house, but a good family who is all on the mend, and a nice bottle of champagne and chocolate to celebrate my last day.

Today, home with the kids, and AC repair man is here as we speak. The upswing. Thank goodness.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Visit to the doctor

Sigh. The kids just recently had their birthdays. So you know what that means? Time to visit the doctor for their check-up. This is one of those things that I truly believe is worse for me that it is for them. All day today I was dreading this. Emmett has historically behaved pretty poorly when at the doctor... from not listening, to not letting the doctor do anything, to not even wanting to be weighed. And just the thought of wrangling him and Molly at the same time is enough to provoke a little anxiety.

Here is where husband helps save the day. Last night at bedtime he told Emmett a story about going to doctor and how he showed Molly how it is not bad at all and how he would get a milkshake afterwards if he was good. So when I finally mentioned today that we had to go to doctor, I was prepared for him to lose it,. But he said, "Oh, just like Daddy said! Ok!" Phew, first obstacle down. I wouldn't have to force him to the car!

Then, taking pity on me, husband agreed to head home from work a little early so he could come the appointment with me. Thank goodness! I had a feeling this was going to need one-to-one defense. Arrive at the office and all is good, kids play nicely with toys in the waiting room.

Then, 45 minutes later we get called back (Don't you think it would be nice if they could call parents of small children if they are running more than 30 minutes behind so you don't have them bouncing off the walls of the waiting room for an hour? Just a thought). Molly was starting to lose a little patience, but not too bad. Emmett got weighed and measured willingly! However, they wanted to do a blood pressure on him. As soon as the cuff started to tighten up, he freaked out. I thought it would pass, but he just got worse. So, we had to pull it off before they got a reading. Took him a little while to settle down from that, but he was ok.

(Oh, and Emmett is about 50th percentile for weight and height, and Molly is slightly below 50th percentile weight, height and head circumference).

Once we got into the exam room, both kids did pretty well. (Molly was getting a little hungry and grumpy, but ok) Emmett actually did amazing and let the doctor check his eyes, ears, everything without any hestitation! Awesome, a big change since last year!  And even Molly really didn't fuss too much when getting checked out. Then the shots. We got some crying as you can imagine, but honestly the both settled down very quickly afterwards. And everyone is doing great both physically and developmentally! Even though the kids did pretty good, I am so glad there was 2 of us there because it really would have been difficult to handle both them when they needed comforting.

So all in all, a fairly good visit. But, still, I am really glad that is done for a while!

Emmett got his strawberry milkshake. And mom got a chocolate one.

Oak Tree Drama

Scene: My house, 3am
Boom! (Windows rattle)

Me: Did you hear that?

Husband: (asleep) What? Hear what?

Me: You didn't hear that?

Husband: No

Me: (waits, hears nothing more, puts head back down on pillow) Oh well.

Scene: My house 6:20 am
I get in my car at the back of the house heading to work, pull around to front of house, see source of last evening's boom.

Me: Oh my gosh!!!

And this is what I see:

A limb the size of a regular tree fell off our 200 year old oak tree. Apparently, a good bit of it was rotted. I am a little concerned about the health of the rest of the tree, so I think we will have an Arborist come check it out soon.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Dreaming of vacation

One month til vacation. Sunset Beach.
I need some rest and relaxation!!!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Garden Explosion!

Ok, prepare for a bunch of pictures of vegetables. I know, you can't stand the excitement, can you? In order to be properly amazed by these pictures, first visit this post of the garden a few weeks after planting. Now, note that these pictures were taken a mere 19 days ago. Can you believe the difference?

Here is what we picked yesterday.
Some of those cukes are supposed to be pickling cukes, but they got a little out of hand!

Banana peppers



Molly and the cucumber plants




The wide view

More tomatoes

There are so many reasons to love a garden. You connect with your food and your seasons. You get great tasting organic veggies. And my favorite reason is that you get your kids involved. Emmett has really enjoyed digging in the dirt, planting seeds, and see what grows in the garden. The only challenge is that we just don't have enough time to weed as we should so the grasses have invaded the garden a bit. Oh well, some things you just have to let go when you have pre-schoolers. It is definitely still worth the effort to have a garden.