Monday, January 28, 2013

Kindle Hijack

Yesterday this sweet looking child brought my Kindle Fire to me and asked if he could have some new app/game.  I told him no way because he already has a million.  I expected some crying but he took the negative response pretty well.  At the time I was on my laptop sitting on the couch and he carried the Kindle back to the coffee table and continued playing whatever it was he was playing.  A few minutes later my email programed dinged and I toggled over to see who had sent me an email.  Huh.  It was from Amazon.  Confirming my recent purchase of an expansion pack to the game Cars/Trucks.  The exact game I had told Evans no he couldn't have.  My first thought was that E had gone to ask Deaner who would of course bought it for him without thinking twice about it however, Evans hadn't left his spot at the coffee table since my answer of no.  Upon further inspection it was confirmed that yes, my two year old does in fact know how to use Amazon's easy 1-click purchasing.  The same awesome program that saves me from getting up to find my wallet each time I need to buy something has made it so easy to purchase things that my toddler can do it.  I suppose I had the chance to cancel the ordered app but I was so impressed (and he had already installed it) that I just let him keep it.  I guess it might be time to look into what those parental controls offer after all.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Rascal Anyone?

I could hardly keep from posting this picture on Facebook over the weekend but I told myself it would be worth it to save for a beginning of the week blog.  I have treated myself to several private viewings over the course of the weekend and I have to admit that I have laughed whole heartedly each and very time.  Is that mean?  Does anyone else ever find themselves in a predicament where their husbands are forced into doing something that is so comical yet not entirely appropriate to laugh at?
Deaner took the prize this weekend when we decided to hit up the Exchange about an hour from our house.  After being cooped up in our house all day on Saturday we put on our brave faces and forged into the snowy weather to Ramstein.  After a canceled trip to Paris and a last minute decision not to join friends at the aquarium in Koln (snow, ice and subarctic temperatures do not mix well with hobbling slowly on crutches) we were bored out of our minds so we headed to the bigger, better American base for some shopping, a movie and a dinner at Macaroni Grill.  Unfortunately for Deaner that mean navigating the GIANT PX on the base.  When we first got there D and I joked about the Rascals that were lined up in the front of the store, plugged in the wall juicing up, just waiting to be ridden around.  He denied the need for one but I knew it was just a matter of time before he broke down.  I have been on crutches myself (albeit normal lazy American ones that you can lean all your weight on) and I knew he would be uncomfortable within 15 minutes.  I just had to bide my time and wait for him to breakdown.
 When he finally did, you better believe I had my phone ready to snap the picture.  I could not stop laughing but I didn't feel super bad because Deaner was cracking up too.
Please feel free to laugh out loud.  Deaner's Rascal came complete with a storage space for his "sticks" (as Evans refers to the crutches).  He was definitely the youngest and thinnest person riding around the PX on one of these.  :)  Evans got to enjoy his first ice cream cone this weekend too.  This child has always rejected anything cold and has never showed any interest in ice cream AT ALL.  Then, just like that, on Sunday he started asking us over and over for ice cream.  I think he saw it on TV or in one of the games he plays but he acted like an old pro when we let him have some.
He also did really well in his first movie.  The last twenty minutes or so he started to get antsy but he hadn't taken a nap and it was dinner time.  We have been having a rough time at night lately with E and him not wanting to go to sleep.  I know we are still adjusting from being in the States but I'm pretty much over it and the sound of his screams at night are very tiring.  Anyways.

It has pretty much snowed every day in the past week.  I'm not much of a snow person but Evans and Deaner have had a good time with it.
Evans got quite a kick out of throwing the snowballs that Daddy made for him at me, on the other side of the glass door.
They even built Mama a little snowman.
Got to love long weekends.  I'm already waiting for Presidents Day.  Perhaps everyone in our house will be healthy, walking and sleeping again by then and we can take another shot at Paris.  Today will be spent trying to work my way to the bottom of the dirty laundry pile (while will no doubt take longer than today) and picking up the 32984039 hot wheels, matchbox cars and Thomas trains that cover my entire first floor right now.  Since Evans just looked at me and said "night night Mama" we are off for nap time, praying again about that screaming issue.  Happy Tuesday!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Returning to Normal?

Well, SOME things are returning to normal, that is.  Evans's thirst has returned even if his desire to sleep without screaming for hours on end first hasn't.  I'd seriously consider letting him drink this if I thought it would ease him into dreamland safely!  We are currently watching Cars for about the 239832098 time whilst NOT taking our afternoon siesta that Mama has so looked forward to everyday this week. It's a good thing that I like Cars and watching Evans watch it is pretty dang funny.  Still, to be wrapped up snug in my bed would be better.....The high today in Germany is 28 and it was 21 this morning when I got into the car to take Evans to school.  I could complain but Deaner is in Brussels on crutches and the high there as only 21!  It's cold to say the least but at least the sun has been shining, a rare delight!  So it looks like it will be another week of trying to adjust.  Like I said, Deaner had to go to Brussels until Wednesday but he was supposed to stay until Friday so I'll take it.  I don't know how he is getting around there with his FDR crutches and I really don't know how he is taking his prescribed meds.  When we picked them up last week we were both shocked to see that THIS was what he was supposed to be taking!
Injections?!?!  Are you kidding me?  I'm not sure why a German doctor would be concerned about a blood clot being caused by a sprained ankle but these injections are some serious business.  When Deaner left yesterday his poor stomach was covered in little thumbprint sized bruises.  I would have flat out refused to do them but Deaner takes his meds seriously.  :) What a good patient.  Who knows, he could be doing them completely wrong as we only have this massive instruction manual to refer to.  Too bad it's all in German!  Thank god for the pictures illustrating how to pinch your belly fat!

Besides all our other "excitement" in the past few weeks things are finally starting to slow down.  I have all the suitcases unpacked, only a week later.  All the Christmas boxes have arrived and those too have been unpacked .  It's amazing how much stuff we accumulate each time we travel home.  I think it should be a goal of mine not to order anything from Amazon for the next month.  Evans is back in school and hopefully we will get this sleeping thing down again soon.  Deaner and I have planned a last minute trip this weekend to Paris and it is going to be a long weekend if we have a two year old who refuses to sleep.  He might really get his first taste of French wine if that is the case.

Off to figure out what gourmet meal I am going to whip up for Evans and myself tonight.  So many choices with a 2 year old that would be happy eating french fries and chicken nuggets every night.  Tonight I am not going to stay up until the wee hours in the morning perusing Parisians attractions.  Tomorrow I will post my book list from 2012 so stay tuned and start thinking up some good recommendations for me!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Book List 2012

When I started keeping track of books that I had read I had no idea that I was entering such a fierce competition with myself.  My goal was simply to remember what books I'd read and the only way to do that was to physically write them down.  I started keeping collections sorted by year on my Kindle as well as a word document that I constantly updated.  It was nice at the end of 2011 to be able to see the 37 novels I completed during the year and starting in 2012 my only goal was to read more than 37 in the current year.  It became clear halfway through 2012 that I would definitely reach my 37 novel goal so my loftier goal became 50.  I have to admit that I was at times FRANTIC for new recommendations as I scrambled to reach 50 books. Sadly, I fell short, halfway through book 48 on New Year's Eve.  Ah well.  I suppose this gives me something to work towards in 2013.  So without further ado, here is my complete list of books read in 2012.  There is a little bit of everything on here so I'm sure that everyone reading could pick SOMETHING that they would enjoy!

2012 Books

48. The Twelve Tribes of Hattie by Ayana Mathis
47.The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey**
46. The Inconvenient Wife by Megan Chance
45. I’d Know You Anywhere by Laura Lippman**
44. The Midwife’s Confession by Diane Chamberlain
43. Dreams of Joy by Lisa See
42. Shanghai Girls by Lisa See
41. Reached by Ally Condie
40. Hotel On The Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford**
39. The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman
38. The Roots of the Olive Tree by Courtney Miller Santos**
37. Defending Jacob by William Landay
36. The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin
35. This One Is Mine by Maria Semple
34. Outlander by Diana Giabaldon
33. The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox by Maggie O’Farrell**
32. Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple**
31. The Spire by Robert North Patterson
30. The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman
29. Where We Belong by Emily Giffin
28. My Year With Eleanor by Noelle Hancock**
27. The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty
26. Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead
25. The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson**
24. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
23. Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
22. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn**
21. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walters
20. The Life Boat by Charlotte Rogan
19. My Fair Lazy by Jen Lancaster
18. A Grown Up Kind of Pretty by Joshilyn Jackson**
17. The American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld
16. Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James
15. Fifty Shades Darker by E.L. James
14. Fifty Shades Freed by E.L. James
13. The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff
12. Miss Penegrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
11. The Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick
10. The Darlings by Cristina Alger
9. The Night Circus by Erin Morganstern**
8. State of Wonder by Anne Patchett **
7. The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom
6. The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly
5. Crossed by Ally Condi
4. Matched by Ally Condi
3. The Paris Wife by Paula Mclain **
2. Bitter Is The New Black by Jennifer Lancaster
1. Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe

I've denoted my favorites with an **.  Sorry E. L. James, I just could not endorse the ridiculousness that was your 50 Shades trilogy.  Sorry Jen Lancaster and Jenny Lawson, y'all both still really bug me.  David Ebershoff, I really enjoyed The 19th Wife and found the story very interesting but what I have taken with me and all I recall after months of reading this is that Brigham Young was a total dirtbag.  Eowyn Ivey, I really didn't enjoy reading The Snow Child, so I am not sure why it ended up being one that I liked so much.  Odd phenomenon for sure.  

It was a good reading reading wise.  I'm looking forward to 2013 and hoping that it brings as many good ones as this past year.  As always, I'm open to any and all suggestions.  Happy reading y'all! 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Am I Being Punked?

When I woke up this morning at 10:00am I had no idea how the morning was going to turn out.  I have a 2 year old who cried for three hours straight last night and a husband on Franklin Delano Roosevelt crutches who can't do anything for himself but sit on the couch.  I should have taken my cue about how the morning would play out by the first thing that happened to me.  Please observe my seemingly innocent German refrigerator. 
In a sleepy daze at 10am I leaned over to open the freezer on the bottom to replace Evans's hashbrowns.  Except that instead of pulling on the freezer door I accidentally pulled on the refrigerator door.  Hard.  Nearly knocking myself unconscious while crumpling to the floor.  I was so shocked I started to cry but five minutes later I could not stop laughing.  I think this was an omen of what was to come.  

I feel like I need to set the stage a bit for y'all so you can understand just how funny this next episode was.  When we come home from vacation our house always looks like a tornado has blown through it. This time is no different and perhaps much much worse.  Since Richard has hurt his foot and can't do anything, only half of the suitcases have made it up the stairs.  The other half are in a state of half unpacked all around my living room.  Last night two of our three Christmas boxes arrived and are also adding to the disarray around my den.  Bottom line, my house has never looked so awful.  

Around 11:00am this morning we were all lounging around the den in our pajamas.  I realize this sounds very lazy but when you listen to a jet lagged child scream for three hours a night, you take your relaxation when you can get it.  Richard was laid up on the couch with ice on his ankle and Evans and I were cutting into a new toy while debating which toys had to be moved up to the playroom to make room for the new ones.  There were breakfast dishes on the table, breakfast remains on Evans's highchair (which was also in the den) and you could sum up the state of the house by saying there was crap everywhere.  Cue the doorbell.  

Horror stricken I looked at Deaner, who of course couldn't help me, and realized I was going to have to go see who it was.  Hoping it was just my neighbor I went down and answered the door looking T-terrible.  The German at the front door went into some long spiel I didn't understand until he finally switched to English, stating he was from the CHILD PROTECTION SERVICES!  Ummmm, come again?

I swear, even after the words sunk in, I stood there like a dope.  Thankfully the dude spoke English and was able to explain that he was there because he had received notice from Frankfurt that I had not taken  Evans to his two year old check up with his pediatrician.  Even after I started comprehending what the guy was saying all I could think was "no one would ever come to my house in the US even if I never took my child to ANY doctor's appointments EVER".   SO.......I had to invite this man into my tornado devastated house so that he could inspect Evans's pediatrician records.  For once I was grateful for my OCD because I knew exactly where the records were he was requesting to see.  I could tell that the guy was embarrassed because it was clearly a mistake but imagine having to invite Child Protection Services into your house full knowing what it is going to look like.  The cherry on the top is that when he was looking at the records Evans was walking around the room announcing he had "poo poo pants".  


When it rains, it pours.  

At least my ankle doesn't look like this.  
That is all.  

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Rough Re-entry

Jet lag sucks.  That is really all I have to say about that.  For the past two nights Evans has been up between 12:30am and 6:15am.  The whole time.  For those of you who can't count, that is 5 hours and 15 minutes.  In the middle of the night.  With a polite request for "schickens" around 5am each night.  Nine schickens to be exact along with a side of "light a'queen baby juice" (apple juice only consumed out of his Lightening McQueen Cars sippy cup [forget the 984 other perfectly adequate cups we own]).    I'm tired.  And I'm sick of this being what I see at all the inappropriate hours of the day.  And I'm REALLY sick of MY bed being the only venue in which Evans will actually close his eyes.
I was super ambitious when we left the States making all sorts of declarations about how Evans was starting school again the Wednesday we returned.  Yeah right.  There was no way we were getting out of bed this morning.

In other news it has been quite an eventful beginning of the year.  Amidst all this jet lag business Deaner managed to go out for a quick run last night and somehow fall off the curb and into the street.  I know I know, I laughed when he told me too.  Thankfully he was close to home and was able to hobble back but when he took off his sock and showed me the swelling, it took my breath away.  After a trip to the ER this morning he was told that he has torn ligaments in his foot, should stay home from work for a week and has all sort of ridiculous things that need to be done, including giving himself shots in the stomach?  He has been laid up and not feeling great.  Here is the best part.  He has to use German crutches.  For those that don't what this means..........
It's only the funniest thing you have ever seen.  Above is Deaner trying to crutch away at a quick clip so that I couldn't take his picture.  Unfortunately for him these arm brace like contraptions are practically impossible to navigate.  I mean, I can't understand why anyone would ever use these but they are all that the Germans ever use.  You can't even reach for anything on these without them falling over on the floor!  Ridiculous.  But thankfully they came with these really useful instructions.....
I'll have to be really careful about where I throw my banana peels for the next few weeks.  I shouldn't be laughing but it is pretty comical.  If I ever hurt my leg/foot here, I think I would have some crutches imported from the States.  I'm just sayin.......

Off to give the child a bath and then perhaps a large dose of Benedryl (to help his coughing!).
Considering E just kissed me on every inch of my face asking to go take a bath I suppose I will oblige.  Everyone send up a little prayer for a better night sleep tonight!  Happy Wednesday!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Goodbye 2012......

I'm always amazed when we reach January each year at the speed in which the year went by.  Moreover, how quickly our Christmas vacations back to the states pass by in a near blur.  So it is that time again that Deaner and I have made 239847 trips to the post office in attempts of sending enough Christmas swag back to Germany ahead of us so that we won't be nailed with excess baggage fees.  My guess is that despite our medallion status with Delta (which doesn't mean much these days except we spent a lot of money on our Amex) we still won't make it.  Sunday will bring a lot of anxiety (for me), a lot of suitcase shuffling and many many times of me standing on a scale alone and then again with my suitcases.  I guess that it what it takes to get us all home!

Christmas this year was awesome.  Evans still doesn't fully grasp Santa Claus but he knows new toys when he sees them and he is all for them.  He just isn't so sure about Santa.  Deaner and I took E to see Santa on Christmas Eve like we have the past few years.  This year I was prepared for the worst and was surprised when it was only this bad.
After this little episode I was a bit worried because I knew that we were having a special guest visit us personally on Christmas Eve but Evans did fine after this "practice run" with Santa.
Being connected, and all that jazz, Mr. Claus made a special pit stop at the Gleaton Household on Christmas Eve before returning to his chaotic Christmas Eve schedule of visiting all the little children of the world.  As you can see by Evans eyeballs, he was a bit skeptical at first.
But warmed up nicely when promised many many Choo Choos in return for a small smile.
Santa even lucked out with a high five (though Evans quickly retreated back to the security of Dada).
I was informed that on Santa's way out the door (which I missed) Evans went so far as to kiss him on the cheek.  Wish I had caught that on on camera but I clearly got pulled in some other direction.  Christmas Eve is always eventful at my parent's house.
Even if you are at the "kids" table.
This year the second biggest "hit" after the special visit from Santa was Buddy setting off a fire balloon.  It's a long story but Evans has asked for another one pretty much every night since then.  Thankfully Santa Claus made it back to our house after his initial visit and Evans made out like a bandit.  Next year I think I will remind Santa Claus about what our USPS bill was in 2012 after mailing all the loot back to Germany.
And this was just one of three Christmases.  I'd say that all in all, it was a good holiday for us.  I never post on Fridays because no one ever reads on Fridays but if I don't get this posted, I'm not sure I ever will.  The next time I post we will hopefully be settling back into Germany and hunkering down to wait out the rest of the wet winter.  I can't wait for Evans to get back into school and back onto a routine.  Something about having five grandparents, two parents, four uncles, three aunts and seven cousins around makes staying on a schedule a bit challenging.  I can't decide if we are going to be in blissful heaven or utter hellish boredom when we get back.  Either way, we have a 9 hour flight standing in-between us and that is all I should focus on for now.  Happy Weekend everyone!