Monday, April 28, 2008

Counting Corbin

So today the kids were playing "chase" outside and I heard Corbin actually count to seven and then run to sissy. I grabbed the camera to try and get it on film and although he didn't quite make it to seven by the time the camera rolled, he still did a pretty impressive job! At least I thought so :)).

Birthday Party for Cinderella

So one of Tatum's favorite things to do lately is wrap presents. I will cut her a big piece and give her the tape and bow and let her go to town. She wants to do it so much that I told her she can make her own wrapping paper by taping regular paper together in addition (saving mommy some serious dough). So it was Cinderella's 4th birthday and I was cordially invited. Love that girls imagination!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Life's a Trip

So I took Corbin to get his hair cut again this afternoon (the last time they bowled it and then we tried to fade it as good as we could and it still was it still needed to be fixed). So I'm leaving the salon and I spot this dark blue Honda Accord and it looked like mine. So I pull up next to it at the red light and notice the familiar dings (from where people just opened their car doors into mine) and had her roll down her window. I yelled, "Did your husband just buy that yesterday?" She said, "yes". I was like, "That's my old car". How crazy is that! I'm so glad it went to a good home! She then yelled that she loved it. Kinda brought tears to my eyes.

We finally did it...but not the way we were planning on

So a few of you know that Daryl and I have been "talking" about getting a new vehicle for some time now. When I say sometime, I mean for a few years now. We bought our 2000 Accord brand new 8 years ago and it's gotten us through a few good and bad times. We loved that car, but we had really outgrown it, plus, it was really time. A while back we really had our hearts set on a new Suburban or Tahoe, but they were serious gas guzzlers. We had been doing some serious research on them and the '08 models were rated pretty poor for reliability and that just was not going to cut it for us since we tend to keep our vehicles for a while. So on to another vehicle. I have always been in LOVE with the Toyota Sequoia, but they were super pricey for just being a Toyota. Daryl loved the 08 models and we'd started doing our research on yet again another gas guzzler. So for kicks, we checked out the crossovers (i.e., Highlander, Veracruz, Rendezvous...), but had not test driven any. Then on Monday of this week, I decided it was finally going to be the day I was going to paint Tatum's room and then give it a complete makeover. Little did I know Daryl had something already up his sleeve for that day...He gets home and I've got paint on my feet, arms, knees..just about everywhere and he asks if I wanted to go to a few dealerships and test drive just for kicks. Well I wasn't going to pass him up on this since I've been waiting for "this day" for sometime now. Daryl had previously gone to the dealer and set this up with the sales guy and was pretty much planning on me wanting the Sequoia (which he said would have had delivered to us with a big bow on it for my awesome is that!). On the drive over he asked me which model I was starting to lean towards and I told him, either the Sequoia, Highlander or Veracruz..but never a minivan (I just wasn't a minivan type of girl). We went over to the Avondale automall and hit up Toyota first. They had all three of my vehicles of choice lined up, so that was easy. But the closest to us was a Sienna (a minivan) and just for kicks I peeked inside. Well that was dumb (or so I thought). It was the top of the line xle Limited edition and was absolutely gorgeous! It was so spacious and just, well gorgeous. I test drove it for kicks and when I turned around it was like a beautiful house on wheels and would be so easy with the kids, but it didn't drive as well as I would have hoped (the limited versions all come standard with AWD and the tires just suck and cause the vehicle to result in a drop in gas mileage and for the drive to not be as great). So then I drove the Highlander and it was much more fun to drive. I turned around to view the back and noticed the lack in space..and then you pop the trunk which you just want to laugh at (why even bother). So on to the Sequoia. We could definitely afford the SR5 and then just add leather to it. To have captains chairs in the middle bumped it up to the Limited (we only wanted one with captains), the price would go up another $10-12k and then you still had to add the features you wanted. I really love the look on the outside, but I just wasn't impressed with the SR5 in the end. I turned around after I got in the drivers seat and it just didn't feel right..spacious, but not as easily accessible as the Sienna for the kids. If money and gas prices weren't an issue and we could put all the fancy upgrades we wanted in, then I probably would have given it a second look, but for just wasn't for us (it did drive really nice though). So then I walked back to the Sienna and Tatum said she wanted that car (pointing to the Sienna). The kids of course loved how they got to press the button and the side doors would automatically slide open and shut for them (safely) and of course loved the dvd player. I just wasn't in love with the color (a poopy purple color). So it was down to having a vehicle where we enjoyed the outside while it was mostly stayed parked in our garage (13/18 mpg) or have a vehicle where we really enjoy the inside much more and we can actually afford to drive (18/23 mpg)..not to mention the 2.9% interest rate on only the Sienna. So then we started to focus our attention on the Sienna and whether or not we should stay in the xle category or drop down to the Le and add a few things. I have always been a fan of the pearl white color and that was the only color I wanted. They said they didn't have any at their dealership, but knew of an xle front wheel drive from Camelback they could send over. So we went home and thought about it, read the consumer report reviews and checked out what the dealer actually paid and knew exactly what they would be able to go down. So then we thought that maybe we could find an xle with a smaller package (no back up sensors, camera, navigation and dvd player and just add the dvd player after market). So we took a break on Tues from the dealership (doing more research) and went back on Wed. Our dealer told us that the Arctic Frost Pearl xle (with not all of the fancy upgrades) had been sold the the previous day (how crappy was that). But there was only one Pearl left in all of Arizona and it was the original one from Camelback and it was the xle fully loaded (which bumped the price a few thousand up). So they pretty much told us we needed to move on it if we wanted it. They were going to offer us top dollar ($5,000) for the trade in or I could try to sell it in two days (yeah right). So Daryl told me to post an ad on craigslist on Tues night (LOVE that site) and I did and with in 10 mins I was getting e-mails about it (I put it in for $7,400 just for kicks). So the following day we had a couple come out and then started to complain about the mileage (they knew that from the ad) and were wanting to pay around $5,200 and take it to their mechanic. So another lady looked at it and loved it and wanted us to take it to her mechanic the following day and if it checked out, deal. The next day called to say it just had too many miles and never mind. So crap! We have this fancy new van sitting in our garage and were planning on that extra money for the down payment to help offset the pricier package we just went with. So I re-posted and added pictures this time and started getting flooded with phone calls from people yesterday. So things were starting to look up again (I dropped the price to $6800 firm). I had one guy who wanted to come out at 2 to possibly buy it, then I had another man who said he had cash and wanted it now (it was 1pm at that time). So I said great! Then a lady called and said she could pay full price after work and then I told her about the man with cash and said if she could go up to $7000 and if he didn't want to go up, then I'd wait for her. Well he matched it and came over with $7k cash at 2. So it was done! I couldn't believe it..things happen for a reason and we had an extra $2k. We just knew this was supposed to be our car (or should I say van). I got to test drive the model we bought after we bought it (who does that lol). It drives sooo much better than the AWD, so that was good. I snapped a few pictures for those of you are are curious what it looks like. I should have done it without the car seats in because it looks prettier, but oh well, we have kids...

Friday, April 18, 2008

Only in her dreams..

Tatum: "Mommy, can you make me a dress like Giselle?" (from Enchanted)
Me: "Do you want me to cut the fabric out of the curtains and whip up a dress just like that?"
Tatum: "No, you can just use strings and have help from the birds."

Gotta love the mind of a 4-year-old!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Corbin's evaluation today..

So Corbin had his early intervention specialist come over to evaluate him today. I was almost embarrassed to have her come over because he is really starting to improve. For the past few weeks, I've really been working with him and he's just grown in so many ways. But the pediatrician recommended it and it was really good to know for sure. She did a small evaluation over the phone about 3 wks ago and he scored pretty low, so she just knew he was going to qualify and in the end didn't. He is basically speaking at an 18 month old level and his motor skills were much more advanced for his age (which I knew already..can't wait to get that boy in sports). She only got through half of the list and basically said she didn't need to waste our time anymore since he will not qualify for anything. I really could have lied and told her he couldn't do certain things, but I really wanted an accurate diagnosis and plus, I know of so many kids who really do need the help and I didn't think it would be fair to add his name to the already long list of kids. If he needed the help, we would have gladly taken it, but he just doesn't. If she asked me if he could do something, I had him demonstrate it for her instead of just saying no he can't. Honestly, I think he would have scored a much lower score and qualified if I were to have done it that way, but I just couldn't do that. So for his speech, he scored a 25% and he needed at least a 50% or higher to even qualify. So all in all, we are super pleased that he is doing really well. We can just move on from here. I will continue to work with him (which can't help) to see if he can't keep progressing to eventually be at his age level for speech.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

"Mommy, can you tell ghost stories like on Max and Ruby?"

So for a while now, Daryl has wanted to set up our 2 bedroom tent in our backyard for the kids and have a campout. We roasted marshmallows and Daryl and I ate smores while Corbin just wanted to keep roasting and Tatum just wanted the chocolate. Then we sat around our table outside coloring and reading stories. Tatum then wanted ghost stories before bed. So everyone got in the tent and I grabbed the laptop (hey, it's 2008 and why not lol) and found a kid friendly site. Corbin still sleeps in a crib, so this may be a bit of a challenge for Daryl tonight. The three of them are out there right now sleeping as we speak. I don't know how, since the neighbors behind us are having a small party and I hear kids in the backyard running around and screaming. I'm just not ready for bed, so I figured I'd blog their first semi-camp experience.

Just what I thought...

So I set my alarm for 6:30 this morning to get ready to go to my cousins little girls shower and stood on my bed and peaked outside and saw a dove fly into the nest. So I'm thinking this is fantastic! Well after my shower I peaked outside again and saw the dove sitting on the wall behind it and thought, okay, now since she/he's been back and will come back, I need to peek on those babies. The dove flew away instantly, but I had to see. Not good! The smaller one had already been removed from the nest and the other one was dead and just laying there. I saw a few drops of white on it's beak where I'm assuming the mama/daddy bird tried to feed it. But it was too late. Last night was just too cold for them to be on their own and survive without food.
**Later that day, I checked again and the other bird had been removed from it's nest as well.**

Friday, April 11, 2008

The mama bird did what?!

So on Easter Sunday, the kids were finding eggs and I noticed a dove sitting in our oregano garden and I remember thinking how strange. When I got a little closer she flew off and spotted a nest with two small eggs in it. The garden is sitting on top of a barrel (which is not very high at all). I quickly took a picture and then tried to stay as far away as possible from that nest so she/he could do their thing. We had some friends over tonight and I was showing my friend the dove sitting on her/his nest and we must have gotten a little close, because he/she flew away and revealed two baby birds (not more than a day or two old..the eyes were still sealed shut..I've done a little research tonight on hatchlings). I checked a few hrs later and the mother/father bird had not yet returned. I thought that was very strange since he/she's been scared off before a few times and had returned within 10-15 mins. So then I'm getting nervous wondering if the mama/daddy bird will ever return and if they just simply abandoned the nest. So then, of course, I can't sleep and kept thinking about the babies and went outside (it's now 11:30 and 60 degrees out) and still no sign of the big bird. I held my flashlight over the nest and thought they were both dead. The one on the bottom is much smaller than the one on top. The one on top begins to finally move (eyes still shut) and is opening it's mouth as if to say 'feed me'. So this just kills me (but it looks really close to death). I feel completely helpless in this situation and want so badly to take care of these needy birds. Do I take them to a warmer area, cover them up (risking the chance the bird will come back to them just to re-abandon them again because she can't see them), run to Petsmart and buy a dropper and something to feed them with (but still risk the chance of possibly doing it wrong and drowning them). So I have to just let nature take it's course and hope the mama/daddy bird comes back soon and does their thing before they freeze/starve to death. I'm terrified what I might find in the morning. I know you are probably thinking 'it's just a freakin bird', but I've watched this nest for the past few weeks now and it kind-of feels like they are mine as well. I did a little research and they said that the parents will not abandon the hatchlings if you touch the nest or them. So that made me feel a little better (we didn't touch the hatchlings or the nest by the way). I will update you soon!