Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Winter Wonderland...Yeaaaaahhh...

It often happens, especially in winter but during al seasons, that the weather forecast looks just right for days ahead of time and then suddenly turns to total crap out of nowhere.  That is why I would never get married during the months of November through April in ND or MN.  Even October and May are slight blizzard risks.  Of course, you have to be ready for any weekend plans, holidays, flights, and vacations to be sabotaged by the weather during these months.  This weekend we didn't really have anything special planned but the ten day forecast said temperatures were going to be in the 20s and no snow was expected so we planned to go to the lake so Justin could ice fish and perhaps Ben could get some much needed outdoor time in the snow. 
Well, if you live around here you know this forecast was not accurate.  We still went and it was in the 40s when we left home but on Saturday the temperature was well below zero degrees in the and topped out around zero.  Ben still got to do some sledding but it was pretty cold. 
There he is wearing hi snow suit and my scarf to protect his face. 

Justin's mom took him on a sleigh ride.  Good thing...I wasn't having anything to do with those temperatures! 

He liked it and almost fell asleep.  He looks like Randy from "A Christmas Story" with that scarf on.
Meanwhile, Tessa was inside doing what she does best...laying around like a bum. 

She has started to do the "try to insert hands in mouth" thing that babies of a certain age do. 
 That night the fun continued a blizzard and high wind warnings started flashing on the TV constantly.  We tracked the storm and thought that if we left early in the morning we could make it since the wind wasn't supposed to be severe until around noon.  Buuuuut...that morning I checked the ND DOT road conditions map and discovered a mess of red lines which means "no travel advised".
I love this map.  I don't know how anyone used to travel in the winter without it.  Every spring we all happily forget about it but once the snow comes it is a necessity. 
This is a current map (green means good!) but on Sunday it was all red.  We made it Fargo and decided to stay and soon after we decided the interstates closed anyway so we definitely weren't going anywhere.  It was kind of fun though.  We had friends who were at a hotel so Ben got to borrow a swim diaper and go swimming with their kids and we ordered pizza at my sisters later and  was able to catch up on the TV shows I like on the fancy channels (HBO, Showtime, etc.) that we don't get.  The only drawback was that the mall closed early before I could get there. 
So we have lived through another blizzard.  It won't be the last.  It was so windy on Sunday.  At one point I went out to the vehicle to get some baby gear and the wind felt like it would blow me away and the snow stung my face.  I always think of the settlers during these days and wonder how they lived without warm insulated houses and machinery to clear the snow and pizza delivery.  And of course, regularly updated travel information maps.  I recall the book "The Long Winter", the sixth book in the "Little House on the Prairie" series and "Grass of the Earth" which is autobiography authored by Aagot Raaen, a woman from my home town.  I read "Grass of the Earth" in high school and I will never forgot Aagot Raaen's account of walking home to her family's farm from Mayville State University where she was studying to become a teacher on a subzero night.  I don't know where exactly she grew up in relation to the town but it was probably fifteen or twenty miles from Mayville. I should read that book again.  It was very interesting.

Thursday, January 23, 2014


Recently Ben has started to be interested in drawing/scribbling with pens and pencils that we leave around.  Mostly what he scribbles on is the little notepads that we have around the kitchen for grocery lists and such.  So last night, while at Target, I went on a classic Target tangent and bought something I hadn't intended to buy and didn't need...crayons!

I don't know if I should have given him crayons a long time ago or what other kids his age are doing but I'm sure we are late to the crayon game. 

Instead of giving him the notepads I went to the basement and unearthed a half filled notebook from my History 431 class which I took back in my last year of college.  There was also a note in there  from my friend about how hung over she was on that particular day when she stopped by my room and I wasn't there.  Hahaha I wonder what we did the night before?  The notebook is red which brings me back to my school days and how every subject had its own color of notebook and folder.  It started in elementary school, when we were asked to use certain colors for certain subjects and when we got into middle and high school and could use whatever notebook we wanted most people still stuck with the same colors.  I continued to do it even in college.  Specifically, red was for history, blue was for math, green was for science, yellow was for English, and purple or black was for whatever oddball class was left.  Usually it was for reading in elementary school and health or home economics or something in high school.  When I think back, reading didn't have a color since it didn't require a notebook because we usually read books and did worksheets and things like that so that was the class (my favorite anyway!) where I would choose a "fun" folder for my worksheets.  Of course, I chose something with a cat on it or something Lisa Frank.  Or even better...a folder with a Lisa Frank cat! 

I still see blue when I think of math and yellow when I think of English.  And neon colored bubbles and animas when I think of reading. 

I am not sure why I still have this notebook half full of history notes.  I suppose I saved it because it was only half filled.  Seeing it kind of gives me the urge to be in class filling the pages with lecture material.  And yes, that is a serious statement!  I really enjoyed my history classes.  And, in case you are wondering why we study history, here is an enlightening reason, right from the first page of the notebook!

-judgement (a social scientific rational)
-identity (a humanistic rational)
-blahblahblahblahblah  American frontier blahblahblahblah regional integrity and identity blahblahblah

Now Ben is de-filing all those wise and intelligent words with crayons. 

He likes to color/scribble but he also has been carrying the crayons around the house and loading and unloading them into and out of his trucks and tractors.  And he might have taken a bite out of the pink one... 

Sunday, January 19, 2014


Back in May of 2012 I made the letters of Ben's name to hang in his room. Here is the accompanying post. 
Look at that cute little baby!  After the afternoon we spent with him that little baby seems years away.  This afternoon he refused to nap and instead decided to spend the time in his room taking off his clothes and emptying his drawers, trying to climb his dressers (we are working on a solution to anchor the furniture to the wall because this is a very dangerous activity) and climbing a stack of storage totes in his closet in order to reach the empty hangers and throw them around the room.  Then he proceeded to spend the rest of the evening delirious and throwing one continuous fit about absolutely nothing.  Well...nothing is nothing to a one year old but I have no idea what most of it was about. 
I have wanted to make letters for Tessa since we moved here but we didn't commit to her name until after she was born and I bought the materials a week after her birth but just managed to do the project this weekend.  I took a bunch of pictures and here they are. This is all I am going to write because I have been up late and awake well before dawn all weekend and I have a dreaded "pre-cold" so my eyes feel all puffy and dry and I don't feel like looking at a screen anymore.  The first few photos don't have any letters...they are just cute!

Now everyone will know it's her room!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Resolution Time

"Resolution Time" is not only the name of this post, but also the name of a board I have on Pinterest.  Recently I realized that I hadn't pinned anything on "Resolution Time" since...oh...January of 2013.  It has articles about exercise, some cute workout clothes, and recipes for things like this "anti-bloat" water that has lemon slices, mint leaves, cucumber and ground ginger root floating in it. You are supposed to drink a pitcher of it every day throughout the day and I admit I actually did drink it.  It wasn't bad but I got sick of the ginger floating around.  It felt kind of gritty.
Sassy Water
Mmmmm...How refreshing that looks!  I almost feel my pants getting looser just looking at it!

So, here I am in January of 2014.  I admit that I am not immune to the optimism of a new year.  It was kind of delayed for me since I had the disappointment of missing Frisco bombarding me in every direction for the first few days of January.  However, once I got the Christmas decorations put away and especially when Tessa started sleeping through the night on the night of January 5th I was ready to go.  I decided that I was going to stay on top of the horrific situation in our house and not let it turn into a toy filled junkyard within hours of Ben waking up.  I was going to spend every nap time being productive the WHOLE time and not just part of it.  I was going to deal with the last of the unpacked boxes, one of which is full of my costume jewelry and is sitting on our bathroom floor for some reason and has been since September.  I was going to have our days be more structured, with more interactive playing and fewer episodes of Thomas and Friends and Bob the Builder while I read articles on the iPad or screwed around on my phone.  Maybe I would, oh, I don't know, play music instead of having the TV on as background noise.  I would finish Tessa's room so the framed pictures and letters of her name that I planned with a specific lavender and navy blue scheme were on the wall and not stacked on top of her dresser. 

And...by the next morning I was sitting with glazed eyes drinking some sort of caffeinated drink and scrolling through some article about the Chris Christie bridge scandal (and NOT looking at the GAP clearance pages or Facebook or Babycenter...really I promise...) while Ben was stumbling around a room so littered with toys that you couldn't see the floor and tripping so the teddy grahams in his dish went flying all over the floor which he ate them off of an I didn't care or do anything about it.  And here we are, two weeks later, and Tessa's room still isn't put together even though she has spent several nights in there and the box of costume jewelry is still on the floor of the bathroom and there are always toys all over the floor as soon as Ben wakes up. 

And then there is the fitness related aspect of resolution making.  After just having a baby and being declared "back to normal" by the doctor recently I have been looking forward to getting back to the Y to exercise and just to get out of the house.  You can't bring babies to the drop in day care until they are eight weeks old, which Tessa turned last Friday.  So on Monday, after a big mental pep talk to myself, we headed off to the Y.  The most nerve wracking part for me was the idea of getting from the vehicle to the door, since the parking isn't always very close and I knew it would be busy all the time because of resolutions.  I have always carried Ben across parking lots but now that is not very easy.  We made it to the door somehow and the daycare workers were glad to see us again and Ben started playing like he had never been away from there for two months.  So I was optimistic and felt invigorated by my short workout. 

The next morning I decided I would leave them there a bit longer so I could go swimming and take a shower and get dressed afterwards.  Aahhhh...such a luxury.  So off we went, even though there was a high wind advisory.  I practically had to drag Ben across the parking lot because the wind was distracting him while I was trying to balance my bag (after using the same tote bag as my swimming bag for five years, I think it is time to switch to a back pack!) and Tessa's car seat on the other arm only to arrive at the daycare, sweating already, to find that the baby area was full and would be for a long time.  There were several annoyed looking mothers with babies waiting ahead of me and while I was getting the details, Ben started playing with some trains and threw a mini fit when I had to take him out of there after a minute because the wait was too long.  When we got home I went right to the shower since I was wearing my swimming suit and needed to get dressed for the day and the whole time Ben was saying "Mama! Uh-Oh!" and shoving his toy combine header around the curtain because he wanted me to re-attach it to the combine right that second.  Ahhhh...so luxurious. 

I know I shouldn't give up, but that morning was not fun or relaxing or invigorating and I am almost afraid to try to go back there again.  I honestly don't know if it is worth the trouble.  Inevitably it will get less busy as the weeks of January pass, as all gyms do, so I suppose I will have to face it if I want to get back in shape because the whole "who needs a gym?" mindset where you use workout dvds or youtube videos and household items like soup cans and milk jugs has never worked for me. 

So that's how my resolutions have gone so far!  Hahaha.  What a bust. Why do positive ideas just crash and burn so fast? I can't be the only one who does this. 

And in case you are interested, here is my "Resolution Time" board on Pinterest.  In the event that anyone is craving de-bloating water with lemons and mint leaves floating in it, that recipe is at the bottom of the page!  I know you all want some!


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Washed In the Fountain

Does anyone remember that old Sunday School song which I reference in the title?  It is from "The Family of God".  Tessa joined the family of God on Sunday, January 12.  Coincidentally and not planned by us, January 12 was also the festival of the Baptism of our Lord on the liturgical calendar so the whole service dealt with baptism.  How fitting. 

Tessa wore a baptismal gown that I wore, which my grandmother made for me and embroidered with traditional Norwegian needlework.  Of course, being a bodily fluid spewing baby, she only was allowed to wear it during the service.  My aunt gave her this cute white velour suit trimmed with lace so she wore that for her "lounge" outfit before and after church. 

We had her baptized at the church where Justin was baptized and where he went his whole life.  Since the baptism of our Lord officially ends the Christmas season on the church calendar the decorations were still up so I think the pictures are really nice. 

Ben was pretty good during church.  My mom may have resorted to electronics to entertain him for awhile and his Uncle Kirk spent some time in the nursery and running around in the entry with him but it could have been a lot worse.  He even "listened" to the children's sermon with his cousins. 

Here are the sponsors.  They are my brother and his wife, Pete and Melanie, and our friend Andy. 

Tessa has three great grandmothers and they were all able to be at her baptism. 
Four generations! 

Tessa with Nana Mary and Grandpa Larry.

Tessa with Grandpa Tim and Grandma Cindy.
We took some group family photos.  The thumbnails were so small that I couldn't see which one was the best since no large group photo can ever be perfect.  If you want copies of these photos, don't worry...I will send some emails with various shots!

Then it was time for lunch and cake! 

I love the cake picture!  She sure is cute.

Tessa was surrounded with love for the day!  And, I should point out that she soiled almost everything she wore, including two white onesies, her sweatsuit, and two casual outfits with some combination of pee, poop and spit up.  Fortunately, the baptism gown got lucky and escaped clean!  What a relief! 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Playing In the Snow

We had Tessa baptized yesterday, but the memory card with all the pictures was left in Justin's computer and he brought it to work so those will have to wait until tomorrow or whatever day I am able to spend extra time on the computer. 

Now that the "Polar Vortex" is over it is no longer dangerous to be outside.  We bought Ben his first pair of snow pants last week and last Friday I realized it was 36 degrees outside so I thought I would bring him out.  I bundled Tessa into her car seat and set up the stroller in the garage for her where I could hear her.  I pulled Ben around on this old sled that we have (we really need to get a modern plastic one for a kid this little!  He fell off a few times because this one doesn't have raised sides,) and then we played on the pile of snow cleared from the cul de sac. 

On this pile is where Ben experienced the childhood delight of eating snow for the first time.  Aaaah...what is more refreshing than a big mouthful of fresh snow?  I have always been a snow eater.  As a child, I had a few friends who were non snow eaters because there was always a chance that "a dog could have peeeeed on it!" And that was the only reason.  Because a dog could have peed on it.  I acknowledged this concern but always wanted to say, "Does it look melted and yellow in that spot?  Because if not, nothing peed on it! I'm eating it!"  I will make sure to teach my children the signs of safe to eat snow.  And actually, snow that has been plowed into a pile is not ideal snow for eating but we had a fresh inch so the top layer was clean and perfect for licking off a mitten! 
Speaking of snow piles, they made up a majority of the outdoor winter fun of my childhood. (Those kids have an outdoor ice rink now!  If we had that back in the 90's maybe I would be able to skate!)  There were the piles my dad made from clearing the yard on the farm, the piles from the school parking lots at recess, and the big one...the big pile known a "The Hill" which held the snow cleared from the city streets.  The Hill was always in the same spot near the middle of the town and still is today.  And kids are still spending unsupervised afternoons and weekends sledding and building forts on it the same way they did twenty years ago and probably since the town first got snow plows.  Even on the flat Eastern N.D. landscape there were good sledding hills to be found but they were all in the country so not accessible to kids on foot.  We even had a mediocre sledding hill right in front of our house on the banks of the North Branch of the Goose River which is really just a little stream except during the spring melt and the occasional summer deluge. 
Ben's outing only lasted about twenty minutes.  That is how I often remember playing in the snow to be.  The trouble of getting on snow pants and boots almost took longer than the time spent outside before deciding it was too cold or boring out there.  I cut the fun short this time.  I was cold because I was not wearing snow pants but instead leggings and Tessa was fussing in the garage.  Ben, not surprisingly, did not want to come in from outside and I had to haul him back into the garage kicking and thrashing.  I look forward to the time when he is old enough to play outside on his own.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Big Boy News

On Monday morning I awoke at 7:00 a.m. to the sound of Justin's alarm.  This is no different than any other morning except that I quickly realized I hadn't awoken to a baby fussing at her usual time of 4:00 a.m.  After a quick "is she breathing?!" check to confirm that she was indeed just sleeping it was time to rejoice because Tessa slept through the night!  She does five hour and even six hour stretches here and there but this was a full night of sleep from 11 p.m. until 7 a.m.!  And she was still sleeping!  I managed to pump and take a shower before her and Ben woke up and having a few minutes to gather myself in the morning instead of instantly springing into diaper changing and feeding mode makes a huge difference in my outlook for the day.  It's downhill from here.  The precious but crazy newborn phase is coming to an end.
This transition also means that it is time for Tessa to sleep in her room in the crib.  She slept all night on Monday night (and again last night! Tee hee hee!) so it was time to get a twin bed for Ben.  We don't have any twin sized sheets in the house so we also had to get him some sheets.  We found this Thomas set on clearance at Target for $15.00.  It is some strange microfiber material which is why it was on clearance I'm sure.  There were many other characters to choose from.  I consider myself someone who has good taste so I cringe at the idea of kids rooms plastered with cartoon and Disney characters but I actually think these are cute and if it helps a kid want to be in his bed I can't disapprove.   
There is the big boy on his bed!  The headboard was Justin's when he was a child. 

If you remember from a prior post, Ben has been sleeping in the crib converted to a toddler bed.  We turned it back into a crib and of course it became the most interesting climbing apparatus in the house. 

He has climbed in and out of this crib countless times since last night.  When I go to change his or Tessa's diaper he beats me down the hall and practically hurtles himself over the railing.  I think that cylindrical railing thing at the top makes it easier for him to climb since he doesn't act like this when we visit people who have cribs and hasn't jumped out of those cribs. 
Now it is time to do something with Tessa's room.  It has been littered with a tornado of hand me downs to sort (which I finally dealt with over the weekend) and stacks of tubs where the baby stuff is stored.  I envision a lavender theme with navy blue accents, the first of which is this sheet that I ordered from Pottery Barn Kids.  I have the materials to make letters to spell her name on the wall but haven't started them yet.  I also have a few old fashioned pictures of kittens that I need to find frames for but have been too cheap to buy because I can never find any at Hobby Lobby on sale. 

I hoped to get a picture of her smiling in her crib but it wasn't happening today! 

The first night went pretty well.  Ben was really wound up because we did all this moving and rearranging right before he went to bed but he eventually went to sleep in his bed.  I heard him fussing at 4 a.m. and he was standing in his room looking confused but I was able to get him back to sleep after a few minutes.  I flaked and had Tessa sleep in the bassinet (just in case!) but I think it is time to move her to the crib. 

In other "big boy" news, Ben has started being interested in wearing underwear.  My mom gave him a three pack of briefs even though we haven't even started toilet training (I keep saying I should start and we have a little "potty" for him but it just seems so daunting it is hard to take the first step).  When I was putting away the last of the Christmas gifts over the weekend he found the bag and opened it up and suddenly he was running up to me in just his snap crotch onesie clutching the underwear.  He tried to unsnap his shirt until I did it for him and then tried to put on the underwear over his diaper (I helped him get them on). 
I was impressed that he knew what to do with them.  The next morning he took off his pajamas and put them back on.  Maybe I should take this as a sign to get out his potty and give it a try.  Eeek...
I thought about whether or not I should put pictures and stories about Ben in his underwear on here since I am aware that kids of today will have to deal with the long term implications of their parents sharing cute but potentially embarrassing pictures of them on the Internet as opposed to them being safely hidden in photo albums.  I have pictures but I am going to keep those off but I thought it wasn't that bad to tell the story.  I thought back to my years of communal living when I was a student, the times I spent in dorms and greek houses, the tales of locker room silliness from high school and even my days lifeguarding and babysitting and I honestly have rarely encountered a male of any age who cared one bit about being seen in their underwear or having their underwear seen by anyone.  There was underwear laying on floors, various althetic support items strewn around in vehicles, and duffel bags and laundry baskets overflowing with underwear.  Even in my all girl freshman dorm it would still happen because girls had visitors who would go in the hallway in underwear or wearing towels to go to the all girls bathroom.  When I went to We-fest, where everyone camps and you have to wait outside in long lines for showers in primitive bathhouses, guys would casually wait in line for their turn in their underwear in the middle of the day.  My old neighbor regularly walked around outside in his boxers and we lived on a busy street.  I can think of various examples of men wearing underwear or speedo briefs as part of their Halloween costume.  In college, there was fundraising pageant called Mr. NDSU which featured lip syncing as a main part of the scoring and I would say 75% of the performances included wearing not just men's underwear but cross dressing and wearing women's lingerie on stage in front of hundreds of people. And of course, you can point out the common scene in the sports world of a reporter interviewing an athlete in the locker room while the other guys casually stroll around in the background.  So I assume this story wouldn't be that embarrassing for Ben in the future.  But who knows.  Maybe he will be the rare exception.  Time will tell. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Frisco Weekend

Unless you live under a rock (assuming if you are reading this that you live in my area or went to college with me.  If not, then I don't assume anything!) you know that there was a big football game in Frisco, TX this weekend.  It was all over the news and Facebook as thousands of NDSU fans travelled to Frisco, a suburb of Dallas, for the game.  NDSU was attempting a rare "3-peat" which they achieved yesterday afternoon and for the fans, Frisco is one big party.  I know because I was there for the 2012 game and the "repeat" last year.  I didn't go this year, after much dismay, mind changing and deliberation.  I would have had to drive, which would have made it a four day trip and I thought that was too long to be away from Tessa. (Ben,  wasn't worried about you!).  Also, I would have had to spend a lot of time pumping and the weekend is so crazy, with lines just to get into restaurants and bars and port-a-potties at tailgating, so finding a vacant bathroom stall to occupy for a pumping session would not have been an easy task.  Tessa is still waking up at night to eat and I feel like no one but a parent should have to deal with that for more than a night here or there. 

So, Justin took off on Wednesday evening for a road trip and I have spent the last four days going crazy watching everyone have a great time on Facebook.  I am not so jealous now that Facebook is showing many people hungover, exhausted and struggling to get home in this ungodly weather that is affecting most of the country but it was still hard to miss out.  And two needy kids in diapers are not the most compelling company when you need a distraction.  Somehow the weekend passed though, and here is what we did.

Ben got to have his new sleeping bag that he got for Christmas in the living room.  He loves to have Tessa lay by him on the floor which can be a scary thing that requires supervision.  He pats a spot next to him and says "babeee!" to indicate that I should put the baby there.  He also does this to indicate when he wants me to put her down in the swing or bouncer so I can play with him. 
On Thursday I dragged us all to Kohl's with our new monstrosity of a double stroller to check out the after Christmas clearance racks and hopefully find some Christmas pajamas for next year. I found Christmas pajamas and also a robe and a pair of pajamas with Thomas characters on them.  Both were size 3T so I intended to keep at least the pajamas put away for the future.  Ben was holding the robe in the store so I let him have it when we got home.  He put it on himself and wore it around the house!  He also slept in it one night.

He found the pajamas also.  To my dismay, he has figured out how to take his clothes off and came running up to me in his diaper holding the pajamas and insisted that I help him put the on.  He has been wearing the top and bottom together and separately all weekend.  I finally snuck them into the laundry last night. 

Here he is wearing the pants over his pajamas yesterday.  I am uneasy about how he can take his clothes off now.  I am glad he is figuring things out on his own and starting to like to pick out his own clothes but it also makes me nervous that he might start stripping when we are away from the house!  My mom and other people who knew me as a young child are laughing right now because when I was toddler/pre-school age I liked to wear weird stuff too.  For example, I would go out in public wearing two different colored shoes.  I guess I deserve this nonsense.  At least, as far as I remember, I kept my clothes on in public.   

Ben received this basketball hoop for Christmas from my brother and sister-in-law.  I saved it for this weekend so he would have a new toy to entertain himself with and possibly stay out of my hair for awhile.  I knew he would like it because he enjoys the one at the Y. 

I took the Christmas tree down (always a buzzkill and the perfect activity for a major buzzkill of a weekend) so the dining room table was still pushed to the side so I let him pay in there.  He was very interested in playing with it but the problem was that he wants me to play with him constantly!  Oh shoot...my plan backfired!   

He has very good shooting form already!  Maybe he is a basketball prodigy!  Hahaha I guess time will tell.  Seriously, I hope he does like basketball because I like basketball! 

Here is Tessa in her Bison attire on game day.  My aunt made her that skirt. 
I was able to get a few pictures of them together in their green and gold.  . 

Ben loves to give her a pacifier.  He also likes to take her pacifier and put it in his mouth and throw a fit when we take it away.  He gave up the pacifier all on his own when he was a few months old and it was never a battle so this is really annoying because he doesn't really need it.  Hopefully he gets over this "baby" regression soon because I don't want him to become reattached to it and I am sick of washing the pacifiers constantly.   

I don't know why he puts his hand in his mouth as soon as he sees a camera these days! 
Tessa is starting to be more alert during the day and she is also showing signs of personality.  I caught a few smiles on camera this afternoon. 

So all of you that were in Frisco...good for you it looked really boring!  Hahaha.  Just kidding.  It looked like a great time. Oh well, I have a feeling there will be more chances to return there in the future.  Maybe not three years in a row again but there will be more championship games.  It would have been nice to get to some more moderate weather for a few days since we are in the middle of the worst cold snap ever right now.  I have lived in ND for a long time so saying "the worst" in the context of weather is usually a stretch but this actually might be it.  I have listened to the wind roaring outside all day and I only stepped outside briefly to toss something in the dumpster which is right outside the garage door.  I felt a gust of wind and slammed the door closed as fast as I could.  Yesterday I took this show on the road to Sam's Club because I realized that Ben as almost out of diapers and I wanted to get some before the weather really got bad.  It was only 0 with a wind chill of -20 and poor Ben's eyes were watering after just the quick run from the car to the door.  Now it is -14 with a wind chill of -39.  Yikes.  How horrible.  Although I am really bored with being around the house I am glad I don't have to go anywhere tomorrow.