Saturday, January 30, 2010

First haircut

So, Rylan's a big boy now. And, no, I don't mean he is tall and heavier than most 1 year olds. He has required a haircut, which in our book, means he's getting old. Rob wanted to wait to 18 months. He does have precious wavy locks that curl just right after a bath. The only problemo, is that during his much needed naps something would happen. He would get a little sweaty and his hair would fro and he'd stand in his crib yelling and we'd come in to Baby Donald Trump. So, off to the cutter we go.

We figured for the first cut, we'd go all out and go to the swanky place

He got to sit in this cool airplane and suck on a dum dum. All he cared about was the dum dum, she could have shot lazers out of her nose and he would have stared at her sucking on his dum dum. They are geniuses.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Rylan loves the outdoors. He also loves the nightlife. And to boogie. But mostly, the outdoors. And now that he is walking free and fabulous, and makes it soooo much easier to take him outside. His favorite thing to do is, literally, run through the grass. One snaffoo. He's not such a "strong" runner. Its like the horses at Oaklawn, "and their off" when he hits the grass. Then he falls down. We have a pattern: run, fall, pickup, run fall, pickup. Rinse and repeat. As long as he's outside, he could care less if its laying on the grass or walking on it.

While I'd like to be the kind of mother who is totally fine with dirt and mud and such (which I am), I'm not the kind of mother who is into letting her kid run a muck in dog poo. And we have two dogs. And they make alotta poo. How much is alotta?, you might ask. Too much. I have a tendency towards anxiety and imagining terrible things in my head. Every time Rylan falls I expect to pick him up with a dog doo stuck to his shirt. When I hear him cough, I get a random thought that he stuck poo in his mouth and is going to have dog poo aspiration pneumonia. Its an illness, I'm aware.

So, I've taken on the gross, gross, gross task of being the dog poo collector. A Wal-Mart bag goes over one hand, a Wal-Mart bag is held in the other hand and I systematically pick the poo with my Wal-Mart bag covered hand. Its nasty. I gag. The fact that I'm a GI nurse when I feel like gracing the hospital with my presence makes no difference in the dog doo world. Gag-o-matic. I'm about 1/3 done with the yard and had to take a few day rest. I'll be back at it this weekend.

Its worth it for Rylan's fun factor and my sanity.

Fun outside in the snow with Papa
Fun at the lake feeding the ducks (he ate the bread)

Fun in the leaves
The run before the fall. We have strange neighbors that often throw stuff over the fence.
One time we found a turkey leg. One time a corndog. This day, a marker. Someone
was trying to run away before his ma could get it.

I had a great idea to try sidewalk chalk

Repercussions of trying sidewalk chalk with one year old

Okay, enough fun, get me out of these leaves

Monday, January 18, 2010

I'm in the 3rd week of Eating from the Pantry. We are systematically cleaning out our canned foods and two freezers. This little challenge to myself has taught me alot about buying food that I really don't intend to eat. Why would you do this, Sara? you may ask. My answer, it sounded like a good idea at the time. So, during my challenge we are discovering new things that we really enjoy (meatballs with gravy over rice) and things that we can do without forever and ever. Two things that we can do without are:

1Salmon Classic Grilled Fillets
Gorton's Grilled Salmon. BLAH. I acted like a B-A-B-Y throughout the 4oz portion. No wonder I had left it in the freezer forever.

Jennie-O Pre-pattied Turkey burger patties. UGH!!!!!!! This tasted suspiciously close to a veggie burger. And, I'm more understanding of a veggie burger, its all veggies, afterall. I've had turkey meat in burger form and it didn't taste like this. Apparently, if the company does the patty-ing (yeah, that's a word) for you, its gross. I don't care how cheap the meat is marked down, I ain't buying no pre-pattied turkey burgers.

Tonight we are having pre-cooked chicken that I froze with a Macaroni Grill Dinner Kit that I bought and shoved to the back of the cabinet about a decade ago. Hopefully Rylan's the only
B-A-B-Y at the table tonight.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Steady your camera, lady

Rylan loves his new wagon he got for Christmas. He especially loves it when I run and chase after the dogs with it. I tried to videotape our happy time and it ended up looking like Blair Witch Project Part 2.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Eating out of the Pantry....sorta

I had a goal, not to be confused with a resolution, of eating out of our pantry for the month of January and doing very little grocery shopping. The problem with this goal, is that outside of the pantry, the Qualls's keep running out of EXPENSIVE stuff: diapers, laundry detergent, diapers, razors, and diapers. I have also ran into 3 events that required me to bring a "dish." There are also a few things in our pantry that you don't just run out of and keep living a happy life: coffee and peanut butter. They are the mold that keep us happy and sassy in the Qualls house. So, I've gone for 2 small trips to the store for these needed items. For my events requiring a "dish" I've tried to use what I had or bring something with fruits and veggies, since my goal included being able to purchase produce. My friends are probably going to kick me out for bringing the healthy items. Our grand grocery total is up to $65.

Rylan doesn't care if the food is new or cleaned out of the pantry or freezer. He just wants it NOW. Usually the name "MAMA!!!" comes when his plate is clean. One particulary loud "MAMA" night promted me to literally throw a whole tortilla in front of him in a moment of mommy hysteria. He was very happy with this decision. Now I have to go back to the calm "in a minute, let me cut you some more healthy yummies" voice.
Notice he's wearing the strap to his high chair like a shaw. This sweet boy is so good 99% of the time. This was a 1% night.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Ain't nothing wrong with dancing with a zebra

Santa got Rylan a new CD for Christmas called "Dance, Baby, Dance." Santa's helper, that looks a lot like Ry's mom, thought it would be nice because it has all the classic kid songs like "London Bridges", "B-I-N-G-O", and "Chicken Dance" for Rylan to learn and dance his heart out to. Santa's helper also thought it would be good for Rylan's mama, so she could learn all the words to kids songs, since an embarrassing day at a mommy and me function proved she knows very little of "Pop Goes the Weasel."

Little did Santa's helper know that "Dance Baby Dance" was actually the Jock Jams hyped up instrumental versions of all baby songs and that Rylan would be dancing to rave music, minus the glow sticks. It even has a baby laughing and a dog barking during certain songs. Creepy. Rylan, however, LOVES IT. So accidentally, go Santa's Helper!!!!!! I have to say, he has some awesome moves, complete with a head shuffle at the end.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Resolutions and one cute toddler

Resolutions, smezolutions! That's what I said last year. I couldn't think of anything I needed to resolute. I had just given birth and was about to return to the workforce after a four month hiatus. I was resolute to just keep my sanity.

This year is a different story. In fact, I already posted a blog about resolutions, then removed it the next day because I needed to rethink some of them. I'm a weirdo. I don't know how Rob and Rylan put up with me and my silliness. Probably because the way to a man's (and toddler boy's) heart is actually through the stomach and I do cook a mean sloppy joe.

So, here goes

My list
1. Save money for home repairs
2. Maintain a semi-clean house 90% of the time (Hello, Fly Lady, please be my best friend!)
3. Lose 20 lbs (more would be FABULOUS!!!)
4. Read books instead of watching so much TV, goal of 20 (a book for every pound I lose????)
5. Start a garden

A difficult, but totally doable list.

Rylan's list
1. Be cute
2. Talk up a storm
3. Walk
4. Be adorable
5. Pull all the shredded paper out of the paper shredder box, get it stuck to his body and walk around the house with bits of it dropping everywhere.

Rob's list
1. Put up with his wife and her money-saving schemes, excessive happiness at 5:30am, and long resolution lists.

Congrats are in order to Rylan, who has fulfilled his list as of January 12th. Good job to my little sack of walking boy!!!!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Adventures in crazy blog stalker-land

This blog that I stalk, I mean read, called is my Stay at Home Mom epiphany. From how to shop smarter, coupon wiser, or earn money at home, she's a mecca of information. At the end of December, she started a challenge called Eating from the Pantry for the month of January. Because I'm a stalker, I mean reader, and I have successfully cut my grocery budget 1/3 and learned the ins and outs of couponing from reading her site, I decided to join the challenge. If I'm successful, I will save us $200 in groceries. Oh, I hope we can do it!!!!

To do this you go to the store minimally and use what you already have in an effort to clean out the cabinets for the new year, save some grocery money for the new year, and remind yourself to only buy what you'll use in the future. So for the month of January I will only go to the store for milk, produce, and diapers. I will clean the overstocked cabinets out. Rob and I will finally try the many sauce packets I buy and never make. The marinades I never use will be used. The "bargains" I found at a seriously cheap store in Mtn. Home will finally get eaten. And all the meals I made during a December Freezer Day will get consumed.

And if I only make it two weeks, and we are out of everything, oh well. I went two weeks. And food got eaten that would have expired or gone bad. The first 4 days was EASY! We weren't even here. We raided my mom and dad's freezer, fridge and pantry.

"yum, spaghetti and meatballs"

Happy New Years

May 2010 be a wonderful year for everyone. I am certainly looking forward to what this year holds. 2009 brought so many goods, a few speed bumps, and a lot of changing.

We started our 2010 with a trip to Mountain Home (we hadn't been to MH since Augest, then twice in a week???). Rob's best friend Travis and his wife hosted a New Year's get together at their house. We had a good time of Pictionary, Wii, and chatter. Us old folk didn't even notice when the clock struck midnight though, so at about 12:02 am there was a mumbled "Happy New Year" and a few smooches.

Then we had a nice, relaxing day with Rylan's Grammy and Papa, playing cards, watching football, and having our last huge meals before embarking on weight loss missions for everyone. Rob and I drove over to Harrison to see my best friend, Brigid and her wonderful family (what? 2 best friends in a week as well? Fabulous!) and a little trip down memory lane to a restaurant called Diamondhead. Then we went back for more Grammy and Papa time and got to see the Razorbacks win. Now that's a good start for 2010, Hoggies.

One snaffuuuu.......It snowed. And snowed. And snowed. And the current temp? 6 degrees. Not so much melting going on. Grammy and papa live a short 3 hr drive away from Little Rock. A three hour drive with about 1 1/2 hours of winding, hilly roads over a lake, rivers and through mountains. Its scary for one person, but add a kid and your whole world changes.

So, accidently, Rob and I have started 2010 with a 6 day vacation to Mountain Home. A little worried that Rob has had to miss two days of work, and that the forecast is calling for more snow eventually. But, there are much worse places to get stuck than your mom's house with 3 meals a day and electricity. And booze.

So, someday (hopefully today) Rob and Sara plus 1 will be getting back to Little Rock. We'll see.

Big news-my fam (including Rob) has embarked on a weight loss challenge. Look for Sara Qualls, RN to be the big winner, April 4th (Easter day) at the final weigh in. What WILL I do with all my money?????? Better go run in place.

Because my blogs are way more interesting with pics, here's a 2009 to 2010 comparison.


2009, with his T-rex claw out, 9lbs, staying one place, cooing

2010 , almost 30lbs, tearing down the tree, speaking in Chinese-like language, climbing on boxes, yet still cute