Archive for the ‘Family Fun’ Category

We had a super-quick weekend trip back up to Chicago to visit family – namely, to celebrate my grandfather’s and my brother-in-law’s birthdays.  We stayed at my parent’s house on Friday night, where Frankie chased my dad all over the house and laughed hysterically at my mom opening and closing the sliding door to the laundry room.  Ah, to be young.

We had a nice visit with my grandpa, who is actually doing quite well at 92, albeit slow and forgetful.  He kept asking us about his CD player, which just needed batteries, but poor Grandpa can’t quite remember things that you told him 5 minutes before. 😦  Although, ask him about events and people from the 1930s, and you’ll find a goldmine.

I then took Frankie to the mall.  The mall!  Oh, how I have missed you.  Sure, Springfield has this building that is supposed to be a mall, and is called such, but really, compared to the mecca that is Woodfield Mall, home of my teenage years and at least 5 different retail jobs, is it really a mall?  I had to return the Toms shoes for Frankie that my sister-in-law bought him, just to get a different size, and seriously, is there anything cuter than Toms shoes for kids?  I think not.  I also bought enough Body Shop deodorants to last me the next year.  You’re welcome, pits.

We then packed up Frankie and went to my mother-in-law’s for Tony’s brother’s birthday party (I told it was a whirlwind).  We had a great time, but poor Frankie showed how much he doesn’t like crowds.  And dogs.  There really wasn’t that many people (just immediate family), but he was pretty clingy and wanted to breastfeed A TON, to the point that by the next morning, I was physically drained and depleted.  And the singing of “Happy Birthday” was literally traumatizing for him.  We kept him in the next room over, but he cried throughout the singing, and when everyone cheered and clapped at the end, his face was one of utter terror.  He was so upset that we put his Elmo video on for him in the family room, and he stood there shaking – literally shaking – while watching.  I felt so bad for the little guy!

Here’s some of the downfalls of having a super-sensitive kid.  You never know what’s going to set them off and scare them to death.  You have to be super vigilant to their emotional needs, and put your own needs aside (isn’t that every parent, though?).  They are not independent creatures.  And, the thing I find the most frustrating is that few people get to see the awesome, lovable, caring, funny kid that he is.  Once he “accepts” you and has some one-on-one time with a person, you’re good.  But in groups and with people he’s not comfortable with, he’s a different kid – sullen, withdrawn, anxious, and shy.

Now I know that I’m not the only person with a shy kid – hell, I WAS a shy kid, and clung to my father during such traumatic events like family get-togethers, family friends coming over, and the dreaded Omnimax movie at the Museum of Science and Industry.  So I’m really sensitive to his sensitivities, but can I just get a little sympathy over here?  Can I bemoan to the world that it’s difficult to NOT have a carefree, extroverted child, the kind of child that Americans seem to prefer?

Enough complaining.  I love you just as you are Frankie, and I hope you cling to me and cuddle as much as humanly possible, because I know one day you won’t.  And maybe, maybe, when you’re older and still feeling overwhelmed and anxious and shaky, maybe you’ll remember how much Mommy loves you and even if you won’t or can’t cuddle with me then, you’ll remember when we did.


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Happy Halloween!

Ok, I only have about three hours left before Halloween is officially over, so I thought I’d sneak in our trick 0r treatin’ pictures.  We had a pretty uneventful day before hand – I snuck away while Frankie was napping (don’t worry, hubby was working at home & listening to the monitor) to get groceries and a little couponing action over at CVS.  I saved $35, got $4 back in Extra Care Bucks, AND got a $10 gift card!  Not bad for a coupon newbie.

Besides that, Frankie and I had lunch, read books, wrestled on the blowup mattress (still sitting there from my parents’ visit), and I swore under my breath while Frankie threw his favorite small plastic balls under the oven and got them stuck over and over again, and laughed while I dragged them out with a broom.  The blue one is still stuck under there.  I fought the war, and that damn blue ball won.

Around 4:45, I threw in a pizza and put Frankie in his Halloween costume.  He was a tiger this year.  I wanted him to be a kitty, since he loves our cats so much, but all of the kitty costumes were a little too feminine.  I mean, Frankie IS secure in his masculinity and all, but Halloween does call for manly outfits in order to impress the ladies.

Around 5ish, Hubby got home from work, and we quickly ate our pizza, handed out some candy and then took Frankie out in his wagon. 


Our Tiger was all set to go with his pumpkin bucket (it was actually mine when I was a kid).  Daddy did most of the wagon pulling….

while Mommy was in charge of holding hands while walking up to the door.  I’m so proud that he’s finally starting to walk, although he still needs to hold at least one hand.  Baby steps.  Literally.

And of course, I added my own costume in the form of Target $1 bin cat ears.  Just a couple of kitties, hanging out.

Frankie had a great time, and I was actually surprised that he seemed to enjoy it.  Even the couple of yipper dogs that we encountered didn’t faze him.

Well, eventually there was a meltdown.

We didn’t get many trick 0r treaters at our house, probably because we were candy hunting ourselves during most of the time.  Plus, we’re a townhouse, so it’s harder to see that we have candy to give out.

Now, what to do with all the candy that we collected and all the candy we didn’t give out?  Hmmm.  Right now, Hubby is telling me I need to hide the candy from him, as he sits surrounded by Snickers wrappers.

Hope everyone had a Happy Halloween!

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