Saturday, June 8, 2013

Happy Birthday Miss Mitu

Happy 3rd Birthday!
It is amazing that Alemitu turned 3 this summer. Not an "I can't believe she is already 3" kind of thing. More like an "She isn't 16 yet? Really?" Oh boy. Every day I ask myself "What is my life going to look like when she is a teenager?" I mean, just last night she told Adam (who was sitting on the couch joking around with the boys) to "Relax. Just don't freak out." Oh and the other day when she was lecturing me about how her teachers told her that cutting hair with scissors is bad. After I tried explaining to her that it is my job, so it is okay if I do it, she said, "Blah, blah, blah. Happy Birthday to you. Happy Birthday to you . . . " and so on. My birthday was 6 months ago.

Or the time when we were at the doctor, and the doctor was opening a sterile pack of instruments and Alemitu looked at them and said, "Wow. I did not see that one coming!" She is full of phrases. One of my favorites is when she slowly says, "That. is. AWESOME!" Some of the phrases are used appropriately, but most of them aren't. It cracks us up. When she gets in trouble, we are always trying to hide our smiles because whatever she did to get in trouble was pretty funny. This girl is just full of energy. All the time. She brings so much happiness to our family.

At her 3 year old checkup, we passed a huge milestone. She no longer screams at the top of her lungs at the doctor's office. This was wonderful, and the nurse and doctor both commented on it. Thank you television show, Doc McStuffins! Because of Doc McStuffins, Alemitu was loving the doctor. She even cried a few days later because she went with me to my doctor, and she wanted to be the one getting a check-up, not me. This was wonderful. Unfortunately, she had a really painful and traumatic procedure done 4 days later, and I don't think Doc McStuffins can fix this one. I don't blame her. Poor girl.

Happy girl at the doctor

Another happy doctor picture 4 days later at Good Night Pediatrics -- unfortunately, minutes later she would begin screaming nonstop for about 20 minutes. She had no idea what was coming.

The doctor was really happy with her health. She is 37 inches tall, but weighs only 27 pounds (fully clothed with shoes). She has only gained a couple of pounds since last year, and is in the 5-10 percentile for height and weight. However, the doctor is not concerned. Even though he is aware that our biggest parenting challenge is trying to get her to eat her food, he says that her features are petite and she appears healthy, not underweight. I was thrilled to hear this. 

Alemitu is still getting spoiled by her brothers constantly. Her brothers have nicknamed her "Miss Mitu". I love it when one of her brothers will say, "I just love that she is in our family." Or "I never even thought we'd have a sister, but she is so funny."The downside to this is that she will throw a huge tantrum if her brothers don't do what she demands, immediately. Her time spent staring at the corner is usually a result of this.


Age: 9
According to Alemitu, she is 9. When she was 2, she knew her age every time she was asked. Since she has turned three, she consistently says she is 9 and will often get upset if you correct her. 

Favorite color: Pink

Favorite show: Doc McStuffins and My Little Ponies

Favorite songs: ABCs and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Favorite food: Sausage, chocolate, and cupcakes

Favorite toys: Her brothers' old little Mickey Mouse stuffed animal. We can't go anywhere without it. She also loves playing with her megablocks. (Big legos)

Favorite friend Boyfriend: She announced to me and Adam separately that she has a boyfriend. Who? Carter. Her cousin. Why? Because he dances with her.

Favorite thing to do: Dance. Sing. Cuddle.

One of several birthday cupcakes in Tennessee

Birthday kiss from friend, Ty

She was SO excited for her birthday this year. She kept saying she wanted a party. We had a small celebration at home. Then we had a celebration with our friends in Tennessee. Then we had another celebration with Sabrina's family in Hilton Head Island. I think she definitely got her party.
My big 3 year old

She picked out her outfit for school. When she wears Adam's old hat, she tells everyone to call her "man" rather than Alemitu.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Summer Vacation 2013

Hilton Head Island, SC

This summer, we took an 11 day vacation to Tennessee and Hilton Head Island. We went to visit some good friends in Tennessee, and Sabrina's family was getting together for a week in Hilton Head Island. We flew into Atlanta, Georgia; drove to Chattanooga, Tennessee; and then drove to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. We had a wonderful time even though all of us (except for Adam) got sick at one time or another. After our crazy spring (see Martha Stewart Doesn't Live Here ), this vacation was MUCH needed. Below are some pictures from the trip:

At the airport

Waiting on the luggage in Atlanta, Georgia.

Sabrina's childhood neighbor and best friend since the 4th grade. She came to spend some time with us while we were in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It is never long enough.
Alemitu became best friends with Tara too.

Our kids and Tara's kids. They played so well together. Tara's kids are amazing.
Enjoying the duck tour in Chattanooga, Tennessee

The Roy Family. We love this family. We went to Ethiopia twice together and became fast friends. We make it a point to get together, even though we live halfway across the country from each other. We hope to go on a cruise in 2014 with the Roy Family.
Alemitu's 'not impressed' face while she waits for Ty to get to the aquarium.
Adam and Brian took the bigs white water rafting, and Hollie and I took the littles to the aquarium.
They came back with lots of funny stories. The water was about 50 degrees.
Alemitu and Tamarat. I love that this little boy calls her by her full name, "Alemitu". That is how he knows her. They were in the same orphanage together.
Birthday kiss from Ty.

Alemitu's classic "snot face". When she isn't happy, she'll show you.

Alemitu eating her birthday cupcake with the Roy family.

Silly Faces!!
Typical Allen family photo. Mom and Dad - smiling and acting appropriately. Christina - too cool. Sabrina - angry, middle child. Jenna - show off.
Sand Castle and Alligator creating
We always bike ride at Hilton Head. The boys are getting too big for these bikes, and they were leaning so far over.

Dolphin Cruise. It was so very hot that day. It was the only bad weather day while we were there.
Sabrina's Family. (Technically extended family.) What a wonderful week we had.
Adam and Calvin built this sand castle. Then cousin Levi came by to inspect (crawl around on) it.

Need I say more? Lots of attitude. Lots of love.
Birthday party for all the grandkids in Hilton Head.
Sick Calvin. Except for Adam, we all had fevers and a little sickness while we were there. We even had to stop at an urgent care for Wes. He had a throat infection, high fever, and needed antibiotics.

Best buds
Another snot face.
Way out in the ocean
Best friends

These little girls weren't scared of going deep in the ocean.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Martha Stewart Doesn't Live Here

I pride myself in being real. My life is an open book. I'll tell you my weight; I'll tell you my financial ups and downs; and I'll tell you when I've screwed up. I've been writing one of my best friends from junior high and high school over the past year. We got back in touch after a slow falling out 10+ years ago. A few months ago, I referred her to this blog. I gave her the disclaimer that my life is not all butterflies and roses as my blog displays. Don't get me wrong, I have a really, really good life. But over the past 2 years, we've had some difficult struggles with an ex-boss terrorizing me and my business partner (Ex-boss ended up being convicted of a felony for it, and business was shut down.) We have some real difficult struggles with some extended family. However these struggles I've had the past 2 years just aren't my stories to tell, so I've continued telling stories that I can share -- and that is the butterflies and roses of my life.

But after a friend, who had moved a month prior to us, said to me, "I'm sure your house is all unpacked and in perfect order", I thought it was time to be real again. I'm here to tell you, it ain't always butterflies and roses. We have chaos. I've got three kids, and I work for my husband, work at my salon, and oh yeah, I'm also a stay at home mom. My 3 year old daughter is going on 16, and my 8 year old boys enjoy doing things that involve really, really loud volume, hitting, playing, and I swear if I have to put the couch cushions back in place one.more.time, I'm going to lose it. I have good kids, I really do. For the most part, they listen really, really well. But there are some days that I have to put myself in time out. Just the other day, my 3 year old was whining that she wanted her drink as the Sonic guy was trying to hand me my drink order and slowly, oh so slowly, gather the change he needed to give me. I would turn around and sternly say, "Allie, Just a minute." and then I'd turn back and smile at the Sonic guy while I waited for my change -- over and over again. She kept whining for her drink. Then I did something so out of character, I couldn't help but laugh. I continued smiling at the Sonic guy while I started blindly swatting behind me in hopes I'd make contact with some piece of 3 year old body. Then I drove off . . . only to hit a curb on the way out. At that point, I couldn't help but bust out laughing. My daughter joined in with the laughter . . . and then started asking for her drink again. Chaos.

So you can imagine the utter chaos that we lived in while we were renovating this house, trying to finish school, trying to move into this house and re-paint and prepare the old house to turn the keys back in, get ready for my daughter's birthday, AND pack for an 11 day vacation. We needed a vacation, oh so badly. But our life was so chaotic leading up to it. Normally I start packing several weeks in advance. Not this time. My house was a disaster. We were having a little birthday party for Alemitu. I still needed to pack. I had 4 hours of braiding to do on my daughter's hair. I had gotten about 2-3 hours of sleep the previous night, and we were leaving for vacation at 7 a.m. the next morning. In addition, I hadn't even looked at things to do in Chattanooga. I had NOTHING planned.

My house at about 2 am before leaving for vacation.

I ran around the house for hours trying to get things done. Finally, at 3 am I told Adam that I was going to take a "nap" before getting up at 5 a.m. This would make the total hours of sleep 4-5 in 48 hours. When I woke up, I realized that I hadn't even checked in for our flight . . . and we were flying the dreaded Southwest. But don't you worry Southwest, you didn't get me this time -- families with children under 5 can board after the A section. Yahoo! Score a win for the Fischer Family.

This is how Adam found Alemitu on vacation morning. I wasn't the only one overtired, I guess.

When I got myself dressed, I realized that I had packed all of my clothes and forgot to leave out an outfit for flying. Oh who cares, put on some exercise pants and a new pair of shoes. Sure, it should be fine not wearing socks with the new shoes. Dead. Wrong. These are the lovely socks I purchased when my feet started blistering at the airport.

We finally got on our plane. Alemitu was sitting between Adam and I, and she started talking and asking for her headphones and movie immediately. I took my pill for claustrophobia, then I turned on my selective hearing, closed my eyes a little tighter, laid my head against the window, and I don't even remember the plane taking off. Here comes vacation.
Even with the chaos, I am one blessed momma.