Friday, October 30, 2009

micah’s song

winkle winkle witto TAR!

howa wuh-wuh what a ARE!

uppabubba … HIGH!

lika dima inna GUY!!!!

winkle winkle witto TAR!

howa wuh-wuh what a ARE!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

to trick or treat or not to trick or treat… that is the question…

so i appear to be having a halloween dilemma.

i’ve always ‘celebrated’ halloween. you know, we carve a pumpkin, dress up in costumes, go ring doorbells and get candy.

i did it when i was a kid. my kids have done it.

but that’s not to say i feel entirely comfortable with it. i haven’t looked into it a lot, but i am aware of the sketchy, pagan history of the holiday, and it does kind of disturb me that that’s what we continue to celebrate. and i do remember at some point, my mom expressing concern over the holiday and kind of wanting to ‘quit’.

that said, what most people ‘celebrate’ as halloween is a far cry from where it came from. i don’t think that putting a kid in a bunny costume and ringing the neighbor’s doorbell is all that evil. dressing up is fun. candy is fun.

but the bible warns about associating with witchcraft and mediums and various evil stuff like that. ***edited to add*** and as a christian, i believe that following the bible’s guidelines is important. does this not qualify as one of those situations?

and then there’s the issue with the massive OVER-commercialization that drives me nuts. think of all the people making outrageous sums of money over all this. you have to have a new costume EVERY year. and have you seen what costumes cost? good grief. and then there’s the copious amounts of candy you have to buy, and the decorations, and a trip to the pumpkin patch (unless your pumpkin patch is just out back), and the lights, the window clings, the bats that fly around in a circle, the fake spiderweb stuff, styrofoam tombstones, and the spooky background music. apparently you should send your friends and relatives halloween cards as well.

i know that’s kind of silly. every holiday is commercialized. and yes, it bugs me, every holiday. it’s not really a reason to stop celebrating them.

side note. have you noticed the route that women’s costumes have taken lately? it’s impossible to find a non-slutty women’s costume! this drives me nuts. even the costumes that are practically identical to the ones for little girls are SO not identical. you could be the slutty pirate, the slutty firefighter, the slutty princess, the slutty dorothy, the slutty little red riding hood, the slutty police officer. WHAT IS THAT ABOUT????

this all has kind of come to a head recently when, after accumulating several pieces for shane’s costume, he’s announced that he doesn’t want to go trick or treating. HUH??? apparently he thinks he’s too old. not sure where he got that idea, but i’m kind of seeing it as an opportunity to make a change, if we’re going to. that coupled with the fact that layla has a bad cold might make halloween this year a non-issue, although she has been looking forward to it.

obviously, this is a totally personal issue, and a decision that every family has to make for themselves – if they even see that there is a decision to be made. i don’t have any problem, whatsoever, with other people celebrating halloween, well, if they’re doing all the invoking of evil spirits and all that, i DO have a problem, but not ‘normal, safe, modern-american halloween. i’m just contemplating whether or not it should be something our family does. hmmm… must do more research, methinks.

just trying to do the right thing here.

Monday, October 19, 2009

putting my foot in my mouth…

otherwise known as, i have a lot of new posts up.

i say i’m putting my foot in my mouth because i just finished giving mary a hard time about her 14 new posts. i’m not THAT bad, but i do have like 5. i wanted to get the pictures from micah’s birthday off the camera and posted, so i did that, but found a lot of other pictures on the camera that i had meant to post. so there you go.

just keep scrolling down!

and sorry mary! ;)

party time

sunday afternoon was micah’s mini-party. i really didn’t want to have a big to-do, so we just invited a few friends to come hang and eat cake.

and that’s what we did!

but first we had to pry him away from his trains. when i asked him, “micah, do you want cake?” he replied, “no, i want thomas.”118 here trudy is attempting to convince him to come see his cake…119 eventually, we decided to bring the cake in there.121 126 we did manage to drag him away long enough to chow down!133 present time! Oballs are the best!143 the super soft, plush thomas ‘pillow’. we all want one. SO soft!148 books. and more train stuff. VERY exciting!

156   158 it was a ‘thomas’ kinda birthday for this 2 year old!

birthday boy!

so micah turned 2 this weekend.

::sniff sniff::

posing for the traditional ‘last day to be 1’ photo:086

his birthday was on saturday, but with shane having a 4:30 soccer game (which they won, btw, and he scored) we decided to have his party on sunday.

but the 17th didn’t pass without celebration. after the game on saturday night, we went to dinner at red robin and my parents joined us there. they did their whole sing and clap and yell LOUDLY thing for him and he was totally thrilled! i was a little afraid he might freak out because of it, but he loved it… especially that his sundae came with 2 balloons tied to it!

when we got home, we made the mistake of letting him open his presents from gramma and papa before he went to bed. 096 100 107            the caboose plays the ‘thomas’ theme music when you push a button on top. so, of course, he would push the button repeatedly and then go dance! SO cute.

 110109  he was SO excited about his new trains, that he wasn’t overly interested in his spiffy engineer gear, complete w/ train whistle… that’s not to say that everyone else didn’t think they were supercool!116 bedtime was tough that night. we were super-mean parents that made him go to bed and wouldn’t let him take his musical caboose to bed with him. so he went to sleep wailing, “I WANT THOMAS!” in the most pathetic way! =(

it’s tough to be 2!

fall family hike

so this was about a month ago, but i’m just now getting these pictures off my camera, so here we go. this was a little hike we took on a sunday afternoon at the paradise valley conservation area. it was a nice easy, kid-friendly assortment of trails. you can use some of them for biking and horseback riding as well as hiking.009

there was a cow pasture by the parking lot at the trailhead. so we had to check out the cows. well, some of us. for some reason, layla decided she was scared of cows. what’s that about?014

yup. the cow licked my hand. i always set a good example for my kids. yeah, those animals in there? we don’t know much about them, but you should totally stick your fingers through the fence and see what happens!

019 030 040 044

the ‘nurse log’ photo is actually a reenactment of a previous photo from when dave and i were dating and a trip we took to canada.

yes, that’s horse poo. the trail marker signs had pictures of horses on them, indicating that horses could use those trails. layla thought it meant that if you went that way, you could see horses. sadly, we saw no horses… but we did see evidence that they had been there.

the cows were gone when we got back to the parking lot, but we did find some blackberry bushes. unfortunately, layla managed to get stickers in both hands and wailed the whole way home. thankfully it’s a short drive.

art funk.

i’m ashamed to admit it. i’m in a major art funk. i’m having major trouble coming up with art for the kids to do.

no. strike that.

i’m having major trouble coming up with the motivation for the kids to do art.

it’s not that there are no ideas.

ugh.

i don’t know why i hate doing art at home so much with my own kids. when i was teaching, this was my favorite part of the day. my favorite thing to plan. the ONE thing i would never let my assistant help with because i wanted to be the one to watch all the fun.

but at home? not so much.

maybe it’s fact that i’m pulling out a bunch of stuff for only 3 kids (assuming micah is able and/or shane is willing) to use. maybe it’s the fact that i don’t have an assistant to clean up for me when we’re done. (i can’t possibly describe how much i HATE washing out paint cups and brushes. YUCK!) maybe it’s the fact that i don’t have a preschool art cupboard to raid full of all sorts of fun supplies. maybe it’s the fact that any time i DO plan something, layla is never willing to do what i have in mind. it seems like any time i attempt to plan some sort of art activity (not a ‘craft’, mind you. not one of those ‘we’re going to make a _________’ activities – i mean some sort of free-ish, open-ended art activity) she doesn’t want to do it. my free-spirited child has her own ideas, which are invariably a lot more messy and/or involved than i want them to be in my own house.

ugh.

oh well, i have no REAL excuses. especially since my mom just bought layla a box of 10 bottles of paint. that should hold us for a week or two. geez.

this is not to say that ‘NO’ art has been going on here… with layla, it’s kind of a way of life.

005 007

yes, that’s a paper dress. she’s been making dresses for paper dolls for awhile now. this time she wanted to make one to fit herself. she stuck it on with masking tape. ;-)

oh, that girl!

Friday, October 16, 2009

cat on a wet, shingled roof

so we have this cat, not our cat, that lives on our roof apparently. i guess it likes it up there. we discovered it up there a few weeks ago when the neighbors heard pathetic meowing one afternoon. after looking around all over, under cars and bushes, we finally spotted it up on the roof. assuming it was stuck, we tried to coax it down. dave finally climbed up on fence, and grabbed it when it came over for some lovin’. our neighbor teri, says it is a stray that the people who live behind her have ‘adopted’ (they feed it). so it was down, and it went on it’s way.

a couple mornings ago, shane went out to scoop the poop, and discovered the cat was back on our roof. so, being a 10 year old boy who likes cats and climbing on things, he shimmied himself up on the fence and attempted to coax the cat down. it’s a very friendly cat and would totally come over to him and rub around him and let him pet it and and was purring like crazy. but he couldn’t manage to grab it. i assured him that it would be fine. it’s a cat, after all, and if it got itself up there AGAIN, it could figure out a way to get down. we had a very distracted day of school, as shane was convinced that the cat was going to starve to death on our roof. when dave got home, we sent him out to ‘rescue’ the cat again, but it was on the other end of the house, and wouldn’t come to him. so we left it.

yesterday morning, shane went out to scoop the poop again (at least that’s what he was supposed to be doing). when i went out to see what was taking him so long, i discovered him standing on the fence, once again, with the cat in his arms. (have i mentioned that this is a 6 foot fence?) of course, now that it was IN his arms, he could not use his arms to help himself down. i told him to just drop it, and when he tried, the cat climbed back up him and onto the roof. it was NOT going to be dropped. so he started again, coaxing the cat to come to him.

it did, he caught it, and attempted again, to drop it. this time, he wound up having to jump off the fence to avoid falling. imagine a boy leaping off a 6 foot fence with a large, fluffy brown cat hanging from his sleeve. that was entertaining. fortunately everyone reached the ground safely. the cat, finding itself trapped in our backyard and quite perturbed, made a couple of attempts at scaling the fence and was unsuccessful. shane picked it up again to give it some more love (i think he’s hoping it will become OUR cat – not happening) and then put it down at my repeated screaming instructions that it was time to leave the darn cat alone and get inside to start school.

then layla let the dog out.

it took sophie all of like 2 seconds to realize that the thing she was looking at was, indeed, a cat before instinct kicked in and she remembered that she used to take great pleasure in protecting her humans from these vile creatures – in her younger years.

needless to say, the cat is back on the roof.

088

Saturday, October 10, 2009

soccer

we are in the midst of soccer season here. actually, it seems like we’ve been at it forever already and we’ve still got forever to go… 

shane’s team, nysa dynamite, because of their success in recent years, got selected to be a part of a new program that nysa is trying out this year. i’m still a little fuzzy on all the details of it and how it works, but basically, they’re still technically a rec team (as in, no tryouts, no outrageous, take out a loan, price tag), but they’re playing almost as though they were a select team. their opponents are ‘similar’ teams from around the area. i guess they’re kind of like a traveling team, in that they don’t just play teams from our league.

at any rate, they’re doing well. last week, they had their first tie of the season, 0-0 against a bellevue team, and all the rest have been wins.

Dynamites_11 Dynamites_58

this is very much in dave’s realm and he’s totally living it up as the assistant coach of the team. it’s fun for him and shane to have something like this to bond over. as always we’re super thankful for our head coach, todd and his family. a great coach. pushes the kids, expects hard work, but always kind and fair.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

reading and writing

it’s so amazing the differences between children.

layla loves to write. she spends most of her time making cards lately. her favorites are happy birthday and happy valentine’s day cards. (not sure why she’s thinking of valentine’s day right now, but whatever.) she doesn’t know how to ‘spell’ per se, but if you tell her the letters, she can write the word. well, i finally got so sick of telling her how to spell these ten thousand times a day, so i wrote it on a piece of paper for her to copy and stuck it to the lid of her box of markers.

well, just this morning, she’s sitting at the table with a pencil and a piece of paper (no box of markers), writing a valentine’s card. she says to me, “i can’t remember the rest of the letters.” so i look at what’s she’s got and see that she’s written HAPPY VALEN… wow! all that from memory. so then i say the next part of it, but not with letters. i give her the sounds and she gets all the letters right (i told her about the silent E) in valentine’s and day. she’s 4!

this totally blows my mind because i never could have done something like that with shane. that sort of thing would still frustrate him and he’s 10!

first of all, he never would have been voluntarily writing anything. he hates that. also, if he HAD to write something down, he would have wanted to know EXACTLY what letters were in it. trying to figure it out from the sounds would have been way more effort than it’s worth (and when you don’t want to do it in the first place, any effort is too much). 

it’s just interesting how much interest affects motivation.

Monday, October 5, 2009

one of the world’s greatest feats in parenting!

just have to share this. usually i’m on here expressing my frustration about the challenges of parenting, but today i have to share a triumph! and yes, you’ll laugh.

last night my amazing and wonderful husband (assisted by yours truly) pulled off the most amazing thing. micah had gone to bed and fussed for a good hour.  unusual, but not unheard of.  as usual, we ignored him. about an hour after he quit, we were getting ready to go to bed so i was moving some folded laundry off our bed and into their room to put away. as i walked into the room, i smelled a major STINK! he was sleeping face down, on his knees, with his butt up in the air (as only really little kids can do – i love seeing them sleep that way – it’s cute), so i lifted up the blanket and could totally see the bulge in his diaper through his jammies. GREAT!

so i went in and told dave that micah had a load in his shorts. so that’s why he had been fussing so much! poor kid. (don’t you love it when they do something like that just to make you feel like a bad parent?)

so then there’s the dilemma. leave him? he’s asleep already. but that just seems mean – and gross, not to mention a sure-fire recipe for bad diaper rash… change him? but that would wake him up and he might not go back to sleep.  hmmm…

eventually we decided to try and change him in his bed in the dark, so as to give us the best chance of getting it done without waking him. dave, by default of having the longest arms, was designated the changer. i got the diaper ready and warmed up the wipes in my hands.

well, he did it! dave managed to flip him over, get his jammie pants off, change, wipe and re-dress micah, all without waking him up. YES!  score one for the parents!

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