Sunday, March 30, 2014

Day Nine

We are heading back to Henderson Manor.

After staying in five major cities, enduring freezing cold, sleet, snow, rain and dirty city streets, we are ready to get back to our own little part of the world.  

Alabama-we've missed you. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Hello Ohio

Our drive today is making me extra thankful for my new 4WD car.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Hardcore Pawn

Julien only asked to do one thing in Detroit - to visit Hardcore Pawn
we did. 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

An unbelievable day

Our day was incredible.
Although our trip to the falls was so neat, it was the evening that followed that was phenomenal. 

We had dinner with the most amazing people (I can't wait to share pictures after we get back home!) and our arrival to our last part of our trip, provided its own blessings. 
Tonight has been so wonderful!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Central Park Dogs

We have spent the last two days being accosted by the squirrels in New York.
They're crazy little things that beg like dogs. 
One tried to jump on Addie's lap and later on, she asked me if she could give one a hug. 
She also asked if she could give a pigeon a hug (I swear it had to have a BMI higher than me, fattest pigeon-ever).
No hugs were given to the local wildlife despite Addie's best efforts.  

We continue on with this crazy "Spring" Break trip surrounded by snow and 19 degree weather. 

Monday, March 24, 2014

PA 101

We spent the day learning about the history of Hershey and even took time out to "make" personalized chocolate bars. 

Oh my. 

The atmosphere and history is fascinating and I hate that we couldn't spend more time enjoying the town.  

E.R. Baby is enjoying the trip as well - considering Addie won't let her out of her sight.  

Pittsburgh and Hershey have provided us with great times and memories, and we continue on to our next destination. 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Making Wishes Come True

Our first stop was to fulfill the wish of my Baby Boy. 
He didn't even mind that it was off season. 
This moment with him - was amazing. 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Mini Sanity Breaks

As we continue through Spring Break, I have decided to take mini sanity breaks and post something from our day.

I hope to have lots of pictures to post after we return home. 

It has begun...

Our mammoth Spring Break trip.

The Little Primate had her check-up yesterday with my favorite pediatrician - ever.
The good doctor gave my little 38 pound Monkey a clean bill of health.

We have left our house and Rudy, Alley and Thomas in the hands of my very dear gun carrying friend, who just so happens to have a police chief, detective and fireman as the closest men in her life.
I have no worries.

We are several hours into the trip and so far, no major meltdowns from Addie.
We are off to a good start.

Thursday, March 20, 2014


My name is Jennifer Henderson, and I am a big fat liar.

I don't intentionally lie - all the time
and this lie wasn't intentional.

It derived from a moment of pure insanity.
Car seat insanity.

Below you will see
car seat NUMBER SIX.

The Little Monkey waving happily at Julien while on the way to school.
Looks - are certainly deceiving.

It doesn't have a harness.
It is for Primates 33 pounds and over
I'm beyond hopeful that this booger green car seat is the magic fix to our years of car seat drama - just like I was so hopeful that the four that came before were the secret fix.

It still has all the same awesomeness as the last car seat, but the great thing is that Monkey can get up into this seat with only a minimal amount of physical assistance.

It brings with it it's own troublesome issues and we haven't had it long enough to know if it's going to make life better for us.

All I can say is that we will certainly find out in T minus two days.
I feel like throwing up, and crying.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

PTO and Open House

Addie was excited to be a part of the PTO performance at school.

My sweet, sweet girl.

After PTO, we went back to her classroom so she could show us some of the things she has been working on - and so she could wave at all her friends as they walked through the door.

I happened upon these and had to take a picture.
The first and second ones just melted my heart.

Showing us her snowman book.

Oh my goodness.
This little guy loves Addie...and she loves him too.

Addie adores school and can't wait to go each day.
I pray that we continue to be surrounded by loving teachers and care givers for Addie.
Knowing she is happy, brings me peace of mind each day.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Celebrating Dr. Seuss

Unlike years past, Addie was thrilled to see The Cat in the Hat.
This picture has been added as one of my favorites - Addie is beaming with joy!  

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Valentine's Day

Addie had several gifts given to her over the course of a few days.
Valentine's Day was in the midst of so many other things going on and I am just now realizing that I failed to provide thank you notes or even a heartfelt verbal thank you for the gifts.

Addie loved each gift and was so sweet and took her time looking at each one.

All about cupcakes - truly a gift from the heart!
I cannot thank this person enough - we are truly so blessed to have you as a part of our lives!

Monday, March 10, 2014

The really sad part...

is how much she hates it when he leaves her.

Addie loves Julien so much and it is never easy when he leaves.
Especially if she thinks that he is leaving her.

This whole car experience with Julien has been a complete nightmare for Addie.
She thinks if Julien is going bye-bye that she has to be with him.
Since Julien is still learning to drive the Jeep and it handles drastically different than any car he had previously driven, we are very much against Addie riding in the Jeep while Julien is driving.

This caused massive trauma in Addie's life when Julien pulled out of the driveway without her.
Although I tried to reassure her that we would be right behind him, she hit absolute and complete meltdown and began to cry.
She cried all the way to the next little town and at that point I insisted that Julien and Chris pull over and talk to Addie.
We decided to stop for lunch and let Addie calm down and we all thought that by the time we got back into the cars, life would surely be good again.

How very wrong we were.
If Julien wasn't with Addie, she was crying.

It was an absolutely gorgeous day...other than the nauseating headache.

Julien got a ton of driving practice and encountered lots of real life scenarios.

He even drove into the state park and had to stop at the guard gate and pay and then pay close attention to the activity around him.
All great practice.

Once we arrived inside the park, Addie and I got into the Jeep and let her have a turn going for a ride - max speed - 10 mph.
She was content, and loved holding her baby and people watching.
It was oh so peaceful while it lasted.

At the point when the afternoon came to an end and she had to exit the Jeep, the tears started all over again.

For now, we have decided that Julien can only drive his Jeep at times when Addie doesn't see him leaving.
Julien doesn't fully grasp why Addie can't just ride along with him and Addie doesn't understand either.

Parenting can be such a joy at times.

March 2, 2014

Sunday, March 09, 2014

I'm pretty certain...

there is a country song or two written about some mud tires.

In those versions of the songs, it never mentions the trauma that goes along with the whole experience, but then again, I don't remember a country song that references primates with equilibrium issues.

I did what any good parent would do and I gave in to the constant nagging being cast upon me by my fifteen year old child and my husband.

They were insistent that Addie and I join them for an afternoon of mud riding.
There was a time in my life when I did jump at those opportunities.
It seriously feels like it was just yesterday.
I was full of stories to tell Julien and wow, did it bring back memories.

At this point in my life, I have to take into account Addie and how she might react.
My first thought was that being in the back of a Jeep, driving through the woods and over incredibly bumpy dirt roads would probably not sit well with her.
I tried to tell the testosterone filled individuals that share my home, and got the typical, will be fine!
We'll go slow...and avoid the really big puddles.
It was fine...until we the left the paved road (cue another country song).

The entire experience was beyond awful.
Don't get me wrong, I want Addie to get to do all the fun things that other children do, but unfortunately we do have limitations - and I hate it sometimes.

When we finally made it back home, Addie was happy to help with the clean up.

What that really meant was that she just wanted to do whatever Julien was doing.

The men folk kept having to redirect her, so I finally got her wagon out of the garage and the opportunity to clean her own vehicle kept her occupied and happy.

...and being happy is really what it is all about.

March 1, 2014

Thursday, March 06, 2014

The Carrier Monkey Strikes Again

Baby Fungus Monkus decided to pick up a nasty sinus infection and I'm 99.9% sure, a horrific case of strep.
That .01% comes from the fact that the doctor we went to see didn't do a strep test, or any test, and Addie had the exact same symptoms that I developed less than 24 hours later.
Addie was horribly sick
and so was/am I.
Today I was able to stand up without the entire world turning black
and the terrible pain in every square inch of my body has, for the most part, subsided.
When Addie was holding her ear and saying it hurt, then holding her tummy and legs and complaining of pain, I now know what the poor primate felt like.

However, my doctor did test me for strep and instead of the normal hug that I would get from him when he entered the room, I got a quick glance into my mouth - from as far away as his little light would reach before he gave me a look of pity and exited the room to order my shots and Rx's.
I'm not sure if it was my contagious bought of funk or the fact that this is the first time my doctor has seen me without make-up that made him almost run from the room.

Either way, the primate is feeling so much better
and I hope to find my make-up tomorrow and maybe even get a chance to see other human beings.

Sunday, March 02, 2014

The Never Ending Story

The car and the crying 
the great car seat debate.

Addie is seven.
She weighs under 40 pounds
despite what other parents are doing,
I am sticking to the recommendation to keep this primate in a booster with a five point harness for as long as possible. 

It is a complete freakin pain.
It does not make her happy
although she likes to try to think she can pout her way into sitting in a "regular" seat belt, we make her stay in her "big girl seat".

However, there is a slight twist to the stories of days past.

Out of the blue, we happened upon Julien's new car vehicle/Jeep/truck/whatever you want to call it.
At the exact same time, we happened upon my new car vehicle/SUV/truck/whatever you want to call it
and my husband decided it would make for a good anniversary gift.
Totally unexpected, but it worked out.

I figured since Julien got a new car and I got a new car, Addie needed a new car seat.
It was only fair.

I proceeded with doing what I do best.
Over researching/over analyzing every single ridiculous detail.

After I finished making myself crazy, we took Addie into buy buy baby and let her sit in the car seats that had made the top five.

When she got to this one, she didn't want to get out.
Could she really be happy about sitting in a car seat?
We were like crazed lunatics, we couldn't get the process going fast enough.

The sales guy offered to take the display out to the car to make sure it would be a proper fit.
After verifying it would fit properly, he proceeded to show us all the colors we could choose from.
Problem was, the only color in stock - was either hot pink - or green.
Chris outright refused pink and I was good with that.

So...we immediately loaded up the green one and headed to the nearest register before Addie changed her mind.

Julien HATES the green and insists that any color would have been better than the booger green that we chose.
I assured him it wasn't booger green, it was dragonfly green.
Big. Difference.

It has been nine days since we installed the new car seat.
She hasn't cried once (well...except for the trauma caused by Julien - story later)
and we are beginning to think that we may have found a car/car seat combination that might bring a hint of sanity into our lives.

This car seat is visually the most simplistic car seat I have ever seen.

This booster reclines pretty far back, and Addie seems completely comfortable.
My new SUV is more grounded than my last one and between the reclined position of the car seat and the stability/quieter interior and Addie's ability to have a better view of her surroundings, we might be on the right track.
I think the combination isn't disturbing her equilibrium.

Or so I hope.

I could be making it all up in my mind and come tomorrow, she will cry again - every time we are in the car.

It is so sad and so pathetic how very much I want this to be true.

We have a very big trip coming up and I honestly don't think I can go through with it if this doesn't work for Addie.

I hope we have broken new ground
and have found the answer that we have been working towards all these years.

...If I am not mistaken, this makes car seat number five and car number three...