Sunday, August 30, 2009

One Fantastic Week....

We had a great week and weekend that made me love living in the midwest, and even in Peoria. Earlier this week we went to see the Peoria Chiefs play and to watch a recovering Zambrano pitch five innings in our tiny little Class A field. I'm not going to lie and say that I know a lot about the Cubs, or that I knew Zambrano was a pitcher before this week, but I am the type of person that LOVES being a part of something and I love the idea of atmosphere. When we walked up to the field and saw the sheer number of people there and the energy that was in the air I got goose bumps. I LOVE going to baseball games - it doesn't matter who's playing - and I LOVE when people are excited about something. Those two things combined made it a great night. Here Miles is with my friend Brett, who he wouldn't let put him down all night. Miles hearts Brett for some reason. Who knew??

On Friday night we went over to my friend Dawn's house for some poker and pizza in honor of our Vegas trip. Dawn has a little girl, Sophia that just turned one and Miles loves her. They spent all night playing together, "reading" each other stories, and just sharing toys. I don't know how long this generous, giving stage will last, but I will embrace it while it is here. Here Sophia and Miles are watching the big kids play outside.

On Saturday we decided to be tourists in our own city, starting out at the Forest Park Nature Center, which is one of Peoria's best kept secrets. I hadn't heard of it until this year, and I can't understand why not. It is this tiny piece of heaven in the middle of the city with trails and tons of cool stuff. Afterwards we headed to the zoo to check out some of the animals and the new African exhibit.
Here is a picture of Miles and Dustin on a camel. I asked Dustin if he wanted to be in the picture, or take it and he told me that he wanted to get on the camel because he was already thinking of some funny poses.....this is the best he came up with. Don't think too hard Dustin. :)
On Saturday night we went to Ben and Marissa's for a cookout. At one point we all were sitting down to eat and Miles was playing with trucks in the living room. Marissa gave her 3 and a half year old son, Aeden a pudding pack and all I could think of was how Miles would steal it from him and devour it. I kept checking on them and Miles seemed to be happily ignoring Aeden and playing away with the trucks. After about five minutes of silence Aeden walked slowly into the dining room with all of the adults. The poor guy had chocolate pudding all over his chest and face. Slowly following behind him was Miles, looking ever more guilty with chocolate pudding EVERYWHERE and licking his fingers like they were tasty little treats. All I know is that luckily the damage was contained to only the boys and somehow there wasn't a single bit of pudding on the floor, coffee table, or elsewhere.
I guess I'll never know what actually happened, but it is pretty funny to think about.
Miles - 1, Aeden - 0. Better luck next time buddy......

Yesterday (Saturday) we were sitting at Steak N Shake (which I haven't been inside of since college) and some man, who I assumed at the time was homeless and a little crazy, just randomly came up to us and told us that we didn't know how good we have it. Totally out of the blue.....he didn't say why he thought that, and didn't talk about his situation at all. He just stopped by our table for enough time to tell us this and then walk on. My first reaction was "This is why I don't go to Steak-n-Shake." My second reaction was to fell sorry for him. My third reaction was that maybe he was right. And then my fourth, and final reaction was "Of course I know how lucky I am." There are so many negative things happening in the world right now, not only outside of the US, but within our city and homes. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't feel EXTREMELY lucky. Lucky to have a husband that is kind and generous that will vacuum the house without being asked and will stop at Arbys on the way home from church only because I said I couldn't stop thinking about curly fries. I feel lucky to have a home and job that I love and feel comfortable in. I'm never hungry (at least not unreasonably hungry), cold, hot, or fatigued. I feel lucky to have two babies. One that I am just starting to know and love as he or she grows inside of me and forces me to finally break down and buy maternity clothes. This one that reminds me every night that they are there and alive, and quite the gymnast. I am so so lucky to have another little one that makes me laugh every five minutes as he spins around in the kitchen until he is dizzy and laughs at his own reflection in the microwave. This little one that has finally turned me into a "mom".

So Mr. Homeless Man, I DO know how lucky I am, and I can't imagine myself ever taking it for granted. However, I thank you for reminding me.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Well the first week back at school for me was much better than anticipated. I think that it was much worse thinking about it and anticipating it, than it was actually going. I had a good week, AND I had Miles and Dustin to look forward to coming home to. I did take Miles to the sitter on Tuesday so that he could try it out, and we ended up having the first day in the history of our lives with Miles in which no nap was involved. Let's just say that I hope to never repeat that. :)

On a much lighter note, it was just Miles and I today (Saturday) since Dustin was helping some of our friends move. It's been so long since we've done any videos, and Miles was in a pretty good mood, so we thought we'd do a little showing off.

This first video is a little game that Miles loves to play where Mommy chases him around the house, and he runs is SO MUCH FUN that we just can't stand it sometimes. I know my dad will like this one because it was he always did it to all of us kids when we were growing up. :) (You'll also have to ignore the massive amount of shedding that our rug does in this movie. It's a nice rug, but it is like having a fourth pet to clean up after.)

The second movie is called "How Smart is Miles". Have you ever noticed how parents just sit around asking their children ridiculously obvious questions just to listen to them answer..... guilty as charged. Just like every other parent in America, we think ours is a pretty smart cookie. :)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Dear Miles,
Remember last night when I wrote all of those nice things about you and our time together? Do you remember how you decided it was the perfect night to wake up multiple times screaming - after weeks of sleeping through the night. Now do you remember deciding that 5:00 am was the perfect time to start the day? Did you also remember that it was my first day of school today?

Yea, well I still love you a lot...So There.

Love, Mom.

p.s. Still...let's not make this a habit. :)

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Dear Miles,
As I write this I am sitting in our bedroom waiting for you to fall asleep. You've had a very busy day. I realize that you can't read this and that you won't ever realize how sad I am right now. Today officially marked the end of our special time together. Tomorrow I go back to work for the first time since you've been home, and I have such mixed feelings about it. Although I will be home again in November, and again next summer, never again will it just be the two of us. I have cherished every moment of this
20 weeks that I've gotten to spend with you.....more than I ever thought possible. You are so funny and make me laugh every single day. You amaze me with the things that you've picked up in the last 4 and a half months. Never before have I met someone who made me want to actually stay home on a Saturday night. I love you so much.Tomorrow when I leave you will be with your dad. I am jealous of the next month that you get to spend with him before he starts back at school. I know that you

will be fine, and will have so much fun - probably even more fun than you and I had together. And the babysitter that we've picked out for you is perfect. I have no worries that you will be loved and well taken care of while you are there. You will have so many friends to play with and so many toys to chew on.

Someday you'll look back at this and roll your eyes, thinking how your mom is crazy and should really "get a grip." (Which is probably a little true.) But always know that tomorrow when I go to work all I will be thinking about is you. I will be missing you because I know that this is the end of just one little era of our lives. You will be happy and probably won't even know I'm gone.

In fact, you'll probably never remember these last few months. However, they will always be etched in my mind as some of the most wonderful months of my life up until now.You are the most loving, beautiful, funny, smart, and outgoing little boy I know. I hope that you will always keep those qualities and that you will always know how much your mom and dad love you. We are so lucky to have you.

Love, Mom

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A photo essay, the perils of Vegas, and some big news (to those who have no idea)

First, we'll begin
with a photo essay of Miles making a sweet little birthday card for my mom. We were having a lot of fun coloring and scribbling with markers until Miles kept trying to suck all of the ink out of the markers. Here you can see what happened from there....
1. Here is Miles thinking about eating the marker
2. Miles actually shocks his mother by eating the marker.
3. I take the marker away and tears ensue.
4. Miles, having had enough crumples the paper out of the injustice.
5. Next we t
hrow the paper on the floor because that seems like the right thing to do during a fit.
6. Suddenly we've realized that we've just lost the fun that we've been having because we've thrown it on the floor.
7. Miles thinks "Maybe if I ask for 'more' mommy will just forget the whole thing."

Well, many of you are probably thinking that I have dropped off the face of the earth since It's been over a month since I've written.....You are close - I went to Las Vegas. We h
ad a really busy month of July, traveling all over Michigan and then Indiana for vacation and then the unexpected death of my aun
t Marsha. In these travels I was able to experience my first night without Miles or Dustin since he's been home. Those that know me know that I am pretty independent and have never had a problem leaving my husband
for an exciting weekend with the girls. Well, all it took was the inclusion of one little Korean boy in super cute pajamas to change all of that. After I said goodbye to them
to spend
the weekend with my friends in Michigan I did something I never thought I would do...I sat on the couch and cried for half an hour. It may have been because I was emotionally drained from the sad week we had just had, or it may have been because I knew I was leaving again the next week for Las Vegas and then going back to school after that....whatever it was, it was pathetic.
Here I could include and handful of pictures of our vacations, including Miles eating HANDFULS of white Michigan beach sand, going on bikerides with his grandpa, or golfing with his cousins, but the truth is that it feels so long ago - and I am ashamed to say that I didn't take as many pictures as I should have.

Now, I know that according to the title next I should talk about Las Vegas, but in order for you to get the full extent of the "perils of vegas" you must know about the big news. Anyone who has seen me in the last month or two will already know this, and it would come as no surprise. Heck, most of you already know it, so it isn't really big news, but for those of you who don't - I thought it was about time to post it.

The Wyse-Fisher's will grow from 3 to 4 in November. Dustin and I were surprised, and ultimately excited to find out that Miles is going to have a little brother or sister very soon.

I am officially 25 weeks, so you can all do the math. We are very excited about our growing family and about having two little ones close in age.

So on to Las Vegas. You can understand now why it would have been a fun, yet perilous trip for someone six months pregnant. It was hot - obviously, and everytime I asked for a Virgin drink they would act REALLY confused and bring me back a Sprite. I bought many $7 waters (they don't just hand out tap water there), but in the end had a fantastic time with my four friends. The reason we went was to celebrate our decade birthdays. Two people were turning 40, and I, along with my other friend will be turning 30 this year. My favorite part of Las Vegas was the Fremont Street Experience, which is the old Las Vegas. It's quite a taxi ride, but I would HIGHLY recommend it to anyone who goes for a couple of days.
Needless to say, I was excited to come home and see Miles (and of course Dustin). I thought I would get home at 3:00 and be able to eat dinner with him and then tuck him in. This was important to me because I have so few days left with him before school starts. Unfortunately I was in airports from 5 am until 9:30 pm becuse of delayed flights. At one point in Chicago I finally had a breakdown in front of this well-meaning pilot who was trying to joke around with me. I have probably cured him of talking to pregnant emotional women for the rest of his life.

Well, on Monday I am officially back to school after being home with Miles for 20 weeks now. The only thing that is making this easier is know ing that I will be home again in November for my maternity leave. I've loved our time together and am incredibly sad to see it come to an end. However, this just may mean that we will have even more fun now when we're together in the evenings and weekends. And really, I can't complain. Being a teacher really is the perfect profession for a mom who wants to work.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The week in review...up to now

Miles and I have been spending a lot of time together this past week, as Tiff has been out of town again. We are really looking forward to having her back. This morning, I brought Miles into bed with me in the hopes that he would sleep a little longer (ha!). Instead, he sat up, looked at the empty half of the bed and said, "Mama?" I'm not kidding.

So, he and I have been scouting out the local parks to see what they have to offer. We ran/walked along the Rock Island Trail, and most recently hiked along the Illinois River Bluff Trail near Mossville. For me at least, it was exciting, but obviously not for Miles as he fell asleep both times. He sure is missing out.

Think of these next few as a series of time lapse shots. The last one ends with Miles exhaling, "AAAAAHHHH!"

When we have not been off-road, the time around the house has consisted mainly of two things. First, we play a game that I like to call 'Airplane or Mower?' In this game, Miles hears some kind of low engine noise, and will make the sign for airplanes (essentially sticking his arms out to the side and flapping them). Since we live relatively near the airport, this game happens quite frequently. If he's right, we do a little dance and look up at the sky to try and find the plane. Many times, the noise is not an airplane, but rather a lawn mower. If you think about it, they don't really sound all that different. Miles insists that it is in fact an airplane. Maybe we need to learn the sign for lawn mower – if there is one? Thrown in the LifeFlight helicopter and our 16-year-old neighbor's car exhaust and you can see how this could confuse a 15-month-old.

There was something else, but I can't remember what it is now. I'll think about and post some more photos soon.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Our first hike

As Tiff is enjoying some time with her friends, Miles and I are finding new and exciting things to do here at home. Today I decided to go on a mini-adventure. I had grand plans to hike for a while at the nature center here in town and then eat PB & J at a nearby park overlooking the river. The hike went really well, with Miles strapped into the carrier on my chest and a hydration pack on my back (I'm sure I looked pretty awesome, but who cares). He was more interested in the 'straw' to get water out of the backpack than he was with the surroundings, but I didn't take it personally. The image below is taken at the first pit stop, where we took a break to eat animal crackers.

Soon thereafter, Miles decided it was time for a nap, so he became dead weight for the next 45 minutes. Too bad for him, because he missed out on a wild turkey and its tiny poult (aka baby), as well as two fawns and their mother. Oh well, he'll see them next time.

After Miles woke up (2+ miles later), we just decided to sit in the nature center and eat lunch (c'mon you really think he would miss out on feeding time?). Not nearly as glamorous as the river overlook, but when there is no available public restroom nearby until the center's 1:00 opening time, you change plans. Miles wasn't took excited about our quasi-urban-garden fresh-picked green beans, grape tomatoes, and cucumbers as he was about the peanut butter and jelly sandwich. As you can see here, he thought it would be a good idea to shove a palm-sized piece into his mouth for the picture (and if you've seen him in person, you know how big his palms are).

Each time we do something, I learn how I will do it differently the next time. In this case, the next time we go for a hike, I will bring the camera. At a minimum, I will have the camera or phone in an easily accessible area rather than in a deep pocket of the backpack. There were some good photos, but they were taken only in my memory!