Monday, August 31, 2009

Evie's 1st Day of Preschool

It's official! Twice a week I only have one child at home. I think I will love it! We walked Evie up to preschool and then Lila and I went to the library. That is my idea of bliss. An hour at the library without having to take anyone to the bathroom and not one of the books I checked out have more pictures than words.

And Evie loves it as much as I do. She had so much fun being with kids her own age and she was so proud of her picture of an alligator that she colored and cut out and glued! She is definitely my artistic one. I will be teaching one week a month and I think it will be fun for us to get to know some of the moms and kids in our neighborhood a little better. Here is to a great school year everyone!

Friday, August 28, 2009

A tragedy on a Thursday...

Thursday nights are my "mommy's night off". I go to a knitting group and enjoy some adult conversation that is uninterrupted for a blissful 3 hours. It literally saves my sanity at points throughout the week, knowing that I have Thursday nights to look forward to. And Brian is very sweet and good about coming home a little early, and getting the kids fed and ready for bed. And most weeks he even cleans the kitchen too! Even though it is hard for him to stand for long periods of time. Last night was a great knit night and I came home feeling refreshed and ready to take up my mommy mantle again...

This is what greeted my return.

Poor baby. I really hate this stage of mobility where they are just strong enough and tall enough to pull everything over on themselves. Brian was doing the dishes and Jake was watching Lila in the living room when she pulled a TV tray over on her face. Again. For the second day in a row. (I also added this picture because if you look close you can see those bottom two teeth are really close to cutting in, making her further in pain and unhappy.)

She already has a bruise over that same eye from where she pulled the same TV tray over on herself the day before.

A black eye and bruised nose. I am really starting to worry people are going to think I beat my children, all three of them have had major contusions on their heads and faces in the last 10 days! I really don't beat children, but until the clumsy bug leaves our house you might not want me to baby-sit...

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lila's night-time adventure...

Some of you may have heard me complaining about Brian spoiling Lila by holding her all the time. On the weekends, that girl isn't happy unless she is snuggling with her daddy, and daddy isn't much better. It's really no wonder she was slow to roll over and crawl. Even after she falls asleep in his arms and I finally convince him to set her in the bouncer, they aren't happy to be separated...

I didn't buckle her in and we have discovered that she prefers to sleep on her stomach.

A sleepy but baleful glare in my direction as she realizes she isn't being held.

A beeline to her heart's desire.

And back to sleep, secure in the knowledge that all is right with her world.

I think this is a battle I am not going to win.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Back to School

Ready to start the new school year! 1st grade here we come...

What's with the construction hat you ask? Well they told us last year that the school would be undergoing renovations over the summer. Which would probably have worked out better if they hadn't waited until the end of July to start...

They are trying to make the best of a bad situation by turning it into a learning experience. "Watch how our school is changing." I just hope it is finished soon. There is no lunch room and half of the bathrooms are out of commission. They are putting lockers in the halls in place of the old coat rack hooks, but for now the book bags are set on the floor, in sheet rock dust, against the wall. The classrooms are also unfinished as they are installing cupboards and counter-tops. It's was barely contained chaos and Jake was more stressed out then he was when he started Kindergarten. But he did enjoy having school lunch. On the way home he told me, "Thanks for buying me lunch today Mom! I had a hot dog with the best bun ever!!" Good first day.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Evie's "flat lip"

Poor Evie. She went face first into the fireplace hearth this afternoon. I think it's a miracle we didn't end up having to get stitches...

When I told her to try to smile for the camera so I could document this latest injury, she gave me this grimace. Then in a pitiful little voice she said, "Mom, my smiler is not workin'." Oh. Just about broke my heart.

But the good side is that she doesn't start preschool for another week so hopefully by then the swelling will be gone and she won't look like she's just gone ten rounds in a prize fight. Of course the day before she bruised her other cheek when she dropped a phone book down her face, corner first. A few days to heal might be asking a bit much...

My sweet boy...

On the way home from a busy day of running errands we made one last "stop" to run the van through the car wash. It is an automated one just down the street from our house and one of my husband's favorite chores. (Probably because he feels he accomplishes something while not having to actually get out of the car...) It is also quite noisy with the high pressure water spraying and the large spinning things that beat your car clean, then you drive under the jet engines that blow the car dry. About halfway through I realized that Lila was absolutely silent so I asked Jake if she was asleep. He said, "Nope. She's just staring at all the interesting stuff out the window." I started to chuckle and said to Brian, "Remember when Jake was her age and he would scream and cry whenever we'd drive through the car wash?" Brian started to chuckle with me and from the backseat Jake responded, somewhat indignantly, "That's because I have a tender spirit." My sweet, sensitive, tender-hearted boy. I hope you never lose that part of you.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Evie's Make Over!

The Before Picture: Evie's attempt to make her hair look like Aunt Caitlin's. You'd never know it from the look on her face, but she was sooooo excited to go get "short hair" today.

Just before the first cut. Evie was a quivering mass of anticipation. She made the stylist's job quite difficult because she wanted to see everything that was going on at the same time. Every time she'd start trimming and layering around her face Evie would turn her head to watch the scissors.

The After Picture: She probably took off close to six inches! I think it makes her look older too...

And from the back. I am excited to think how much we'll save on shampoo and conditioner, and I have already decided that she is going to be a flapper for Halloween! It will be a learning curve to learn what styles we can do with the new cut, but still a lot of fun.

After the all the excitement of haircuts we grabbed some lunch and then went school shopping for Jake. (And a little pre-school shopping for Evie.) We were hot, tired and sweaty so we went over to Pa Dave's for a quick dip in the pool and to show off all the new clothes. *On a side note, I had to buy Jake some new church shoes because he's been wearing his sneakers for the last month. Size 4! My kid has ginormous feet. I am very worried that the new school sneakers we bought last month are already too small. ARRGH! Dang growth spurts.

Pa Dave bought some corn at the farmer's market yesterday so we stayed for dinner, since he didn't think he could eat a dozen ears by himself. Evie loved "helping" him shuck the corn and then couldn't wait for them to cook to start eating one. Good thing corn is as good raw as it is cooked with butter and salt...

The worried look on Jake's face is because his other bottom tooth is super loose and it is hard to eat corn on the cob with loose teeth.

Evie was having a very hard time letting Jake share her ear of corn...

Problem solved.

Yup. We do love corn.

Couldn't leave out my littlest munchkin and her amazingly lizard-like tongue.

All in all, a pretty great day.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Happy Birthday Mom

Last Friday, the 14th, would have been my mom's 51st birthday. It was also 6 months from the day of her funeral. My Dad decided that he would honor her memory by spending the day working in her garden. It was a nice day. Surreal to think that one year ago we were having a huge party to celebrate her milestone 50th, complete with the SWW swim the night before.

Here is Jake following in Mima's steps and gardening in a swimsuit. She would spend most of the summer puttering around outside in her swimsuit, crocs, garden gloves and floppy brimmed hat.

Dad and some of my mom's many friends and co-workers who came to help in the garden through out the day.

More friends enjoying some of the many great desserts everyone brought to share.

A summer party at my parents' house wouldn't be complete without swimming.

My dad with Paula and Sandra, just two of the women who performed "errands of angels" for our family over the past year.

Thank you everyone who was there to help us remember our mother and celebrate her life. The day was exactly what she would have wanted it to be. I love you Mom.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

It's 10 am, do you know where your car keys are?

I was snuggling in bed feeding Lila her bottle and enjoying a few more moments of rest when the older two children decided that their feet were cold and wanted in on the snuggling. Nice, right? For about two and a half minutes until they started climbing all over each other and me like a box full of puppies. And then, CRACK! Jake's glasses just weren't designed to withstand a three year old jumping on his face. With a sigh of resignation that resting time was over I called the eye doctors to make an appointment and see if they might be able to fix the glasses until we can get the new ones. An hour later we were all cleaned-up, dressed, and ready to set out on our errands. I found my purse, I found my phone, I didn't find my sunglasses, but I did grab the i-pod while looking for them and remembered both diapers and a change of undies for the mostly potty-trained among us. What I couldn't find anywhere were my car keys. In the last week we have lost the DVD remote (or ma-rote as it is called at our house...) a pair of safety scissors (I have my suspicions about that one...) and all three pairs of tweezers (which I had a coupon for a $1 off last week and didn't buy because I thought I already had three pair at home...) were my car keys sucked up into that vortex of disappearing stuff? Nope. My husband took them to work with him. Not on purpose of course, not that that makes it any less inconvenient for me. I thought, "Okay, we'll walk to the doctors. It's not that far. Then we could stop at the park on the way back..." Until I realize that both strollers are locked in the van. Hmmm. I am NOT carrying the baby, we'd never make it. Brian did offer to drive them home on his lunch break, but it isn't worth the gas money to me. Enter my dad to save the day, he works halfway between our house and Brian's work, plus he gets like 100 mpg. He just dropped them off so now we can go do our errands, Thanks Pa Dave!

Oh and my suspicion about the scissors? Evie decided she wanted short hair like Aunt Caite and started trimming up one side. Yeah, I'd post a picture but my camera is at my dad's and I was going to go get it, but somebody took off with my keys. I will post before and after pictures in a few days. I could have cheerfully paddled her bottom, but it's only hair, it will grow back, and I am so grateful that she only cut her own hair and not someone else's. We have had a long talk about who cuts our hair. Only the "haircut ladies"! Let's hope this lesson sticks.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Death of a Rhinoceros

This is my piggy bank, or rhino-bank if you prefer. I got it years ago at a family Christmas party as a white elephant gift. (Ironic, huh?) And for whatever reason I loved it. I am not normally a big game animal kind of girl, and my husband has outlawed all forms of animal prints since day one of our marriage. So even though he doesn't match anything else in my bedroom, or the rest of my house for that matter, I have hauled him around thorough several moves because he just makes me smile.

Until tonight. When my son tried to simultaneously put the butter back in the fridge, his cup in the sink and the piggy bank back on my dresser. Obviously something had to give. My poor sad rhino.

So now the hunt is on. I need a replacement piggy bank, but I will no longer be satisfied with a common place pig. I have grown to expect both whimsy and quirky-ness from my change holding receptacles. It doesn't necessarily have to be a rhino either. I guess it will have to be one of those things that I'll know it when I see it.

Tonight was just sort of strange at our house. Brian had to work late so it was just the kids and me for dinner. Jake made the comment that it just didn't feel like a family dinner without Daddy and Lila (who was asleep at the time) at the table. He followed that sweet observation with this question, "Mom? If we were cannonballs which part of the human would we eat?" It took me a few seconds to work out that he meant cannibals. I told him I didn't think that that was a particularly appropriate topic for the dinner table but he really wanted clarification on what part of the human body would be the meat. I explained that meat is muscle tissue from different animals and promptly handed over the rest of my chicken breast. I am hoping the fact that he found the idea interesting is an indication of a medical turn of mind and not a homicidal Hannibal Lecter leaning. Of course he could have just been trying to gross me out so he could finish my chicken.

And one last Jake story that I have to write down before I forget. Last night my in-laws watched the kids so Brian and I could go to a play. Kind of a fun middle-of-the-week date night. As we were pulling in the drive way Jake asked if we could listen to a song before going inside. Being a mom, and therefore contractually obligated to embarrass my children when they are older, I thought I would be funny and started to sing in a pretend operatic voice that was off-key on purpose. Evie and Lila obliged with giggles. Jake stared at me solemnly for a moment and then said, "I am not trying to rude or anything, but don't you feel humiliated?" Ouch. Thanks Jake, I do now.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Because that's what I do...

On Saturday afternoon Evie got a hold of the camera. I deleted about 20 blurry and bleached out shots of the bottom half of her face. She loves to take pictures. Don't every leave your camera lying around our house or you will end up with a memory card full of people's knees and bums from a three year old perspective. She was sitting on the couch snapping random shots of the living room when she took this shot of Brian in the kitchen making Lila a bottle.

Then she smiled at him and said proudly, "I took you picture Daddy, and Mommy will put it on the blog!" How could I disappoint that confidence? So there you go, photography by Evie, now taking appointments if you are in the market for out of focus pictures that will mostly have a little finger obscuring the subject.

This picture is for Lynnett and Caitlin who helped talk me into buying this cute knitted dress for Evie, by pointing out I could buy it on sale for cheaper than I could buy the yarn to make it. I think this is going to be my favorite fall outfit for her! Doesn't she just look snuggly?

Here we are playing beauty parlor. Actually this is how I get her to let me trim her finger and toe nails without pitching a fit. She is fine with it if I paint them after.

This just makes me laugh at her poor little toes stretched apart by the spacers. But hey, they are pink and purple so that makes it all okay.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Babyhood Lost

The first day of kindergarten I was fine. When he got glasses, when he rode his first two wheel bike. We have approached all the firsts of his life with excitement for a grand adventure. But today my baby lost his first tooth. I got a little weepy. It surprised me how emotional I felt seeing his cheeky grin that I love so much looking a little more redneck with a gap in the front.

I guess it's because soon he will have a grown-up tooth taking the place of that tiny little tooth, and it makes him so officially not a baby anymore. (The last time I felt like this was when he was a little over 2 years old and we reached the point when there was no possible way to squeeze him into a onesie anymore.) The plus side was that he could finally use his tooth pocket I made him a few months ago.

The story of how he lost the tooth is kind of funny though. We were at Walmart with Aunt Caite, who was trying on jeans. We were waiting for her on a bench outside the dressing rooms, with another mom there school shopping with her two kids. I noticed the tooth was looking decidedly more crooked than it had the day before so I asked him if I could see how loose it was. One little wiggle and pop!, it was halfway out. So I reached in and pulled it the rest of the way out. He was a little freaked because of the blood. I grabbed a tissue and said, "Here, bite down on this." He did for a second, then pulled it out and spit blood on the floor! I was so shocked I just yelled, "JACOB!! What are you doing?" Fortunately I had the diaper bag with me and plenty of wipes to clean up the floor. It was a glaring reminder that as smart as he is, he is still only six and his frontal lobe is not done developing.

I couldn't resist posting this picture. This is what I got when I demanded he actually look at the camera while I took the picture. The amount of concentration this took him was a little scary...

Monday, August 3, 2009

Tissue Paper!

Oh my goodness, I hardly know where to start. I guess by saying that Evie is spoiled for choice when it comes to family and friends that love her. We had a great little get together for her birthday Sunday night. Dinner with the grandparents and Caite and Patrick, and then the rest of the family came for the cake and ice cream. I made pink and brown cupcakes, which apparently threw some people. The strawberry cupcakes were frosted with chocolate, and the chocolate cupcakes were frosted with strawberry. Sorry to the purists who don't like their fruit and chocolate mixed. (It all just tastes like sugar to me...)

Here is a group shot of about half of the attendees, from left to right is my cousin Sarah and her little boy, Aunt Caite, Uncle Patrick, the birthday girl, Pa Dave, (great)Grandpa Jerry, and half of Uncle Kaleb's forehead.

We got the moment of her blowing out her candles this time. Three whole candles. She is so excited to be three, she tells us all at least once an hour that she is now three, and not two anymore. (Ok, I do have a little video of it but it won't upload for some reason. I will have to figure that out later.)

I love this face. This is her excited face. And everything, I mean everything about her happy birthday was exciting to her.

I loved watching her open her presents. If someone asked her what it was before she had gotten every scrap of wrapping paper off of it she would say, "I don't know until I open it." And she was still thrilled every time she opened a package or bag to find tissue paper. I don't know what the deal is with the tissue paper, she doesn't try to keep or anything. She would have those same excited eyes and yell, "Tissue paper!"

This was her big present from Pa Dave. It is an easel and a roll of paper for it so she can draw and paint and scribble to her hearts content. She loves it and has already been busy making masterpieces today.

Here is some more of her loot. She got her first Barbie doll from Grandma T. (A pink princess one, how perfect!) She also got several books, a princess coloring book, some princess bubble bath, a ballet outfit, some dress up gloves and more... like I said, spoiled.

These are her new jammies from Grandma and Papa T. She loves them and they fit perfectly!

And this it my favorite present that I picked out. She has been asking for a new "pack-pack" ever since we got Jake's new one for school. I couldn't resist when I found this one, it could not be more perfect...

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Happy Birthday Evie!

I know this is where you'd usually say something like, "I can't believe my baby girl is three!" But frankly, I can. I love having daughters. Girls are just so much fun to accessorize. Evie is my sweet, busy girly girl who loves shoes, chocolate, jewelry, and watching shows where the girls wear pretty, fancy dresses.

We started off the morning with a breakfast of toaster waffles. Evie wanted cake, so Daddy very cleverly stacked them up and added syrup "frosting" and a candle, and pretty much saved the day!

Of course she managed to blow out the candle right after the camera stopped filming. Ah well, I figure it was just the trial run. I'll make sure we get the actual moment with the cake tomorrow.

She got to open three of her presents after breakfast. (We are doing the cake/ice cream/party thing tomorrow with the families.) She got the dress I made her so she can wear it to church, a princess tiara set, and a sash so that everyone knows it's her special day! Plus it's my new tradition.

Evie got her wish! She wanted to go to Build-a-Bear and make a pink bear. We had a fun "girl time" afternoon with Aunt Caite and Lila along for the ride.

Here is Evie with her bear that she named Evie Two and picked out a Cinderella outfit for, complete with glass slippers. After all the bear making fun we headed over to the food court and enjoyed sharing a frozen lemonade. Then Caite and Evie played in the fountains at the Gateway.

Since I'd brought a change of bottoms we were able to let her dry off and change at the car, but I didn't have an extra shirt. So the birthday girl rode home in her birthday suit!

We went to Dad's for dinner, he grilled salmon. Yum! The kids got to jump in the pool for a little bit before dinner and when they were changing into their swimsuits Evie hit hyper-drive! She was running all over my dad's house absolutely naked and shouting, "It's my birthday! Oh my goodness!! It's my birthday! Hooray!!" It was hilarious.

She got to open her presents from Caite and Patrick after dinner. Two pairs of adorable shoes! One, a pretty pink church pair, and one brown and pink canvas with stripes and polka dots! She was in heaven! (I had a hard time getting her to take them off for bed.) At one point when she was opening the 2nd pair she said, "Oh my goodness, how many pair of shoes does one girl need!?" ( have to imagine that said in a very excited voice.) I don't know how she'll survive the excitement of the party tomorrow with more presents and cake!