Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bye-Bye March!

We were happy to see January go, so I feel weird saying the same thing about March. We actually had some pretty good times this month, but we have also had a lot of sniffles, coughing, sneezing, fevers and headaches. I have this idea that tomorrow, when it's April, we will all be magically cured!

From March

Monday, March 30, 2009

Staycation Sledding

You never really want your sledding videos to be America's Funniest Home Videos quality, but I think some of these could at least qualify for a medley. A sledly, if you will. I don't know what it was about Luke and Maisey and Lili, but they really just couldn't seem to avoid each other.

And Jack had to get in on the action too:

With the time change and the warm weather,
From March

it was suddenly 6:00 pm. Time to bike home from the hill and make dinner!
From March

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Staycation Photo Essay

Phew - what started as a few hours off here and there turned into 3 days of skiing and snowboarding and two days of sledding and snowman building. And there was some laying around, too. But not a lot of working or computer time. Yea! We all really needed a break, and mother nature was happy to oblige with 16.8 inches of snow for a snow day on Thursday. We had already played hooky on Wednesday for a ski day at Copper, so when the daycare just didn't open, and then Luke's camp started sending kids home after an hour, and then my work closed due to the blizzard, we did what we do best: Packed up the car and headed to the slopes. (This is where I would link to "state of emergency 1994" when we hit the closed roads and made our way to Seven Springs in Pennsylvania after classes were canceled for the rest of the week. But that was a long time ago and I did not have a blog.)

Start of the storm:

From March

When our friends called to say they were headed to Eldora for the day, and planning to spend the night in a hotel in Nederland, I secretly thought they were crazy. But when my work closed for the day, I started packing. Dave put the chains on the van and we got ready to caravan up there, Eurosled style. It was mildly harrowing.

** Here is where I need the picture that Andrea took of the Fire Department telling us we needed to turn around because a bus was sideways across the canyon and an SUV was in the creek and the road was closed. We were probably 45 minutes into a 45 minute drive, and we were about halfway there. Fast forward another hour or so, and we made it there via an alternate route. ***

The snow was amazing. Wow, we had a great day! Jack's first Powder Day!

From March

The best part was that the kids didn't really want to ski, so the adults got to take a bunch of turns without them. (Shh, don't tell them that.)

From March

Then we went out to dinner, hit the hot tub, and went to Eldora again the next day.

From March

From March

Did I mention that in our haste, we left without Luke's ski jacket, ski pants, and gloves? Fortunately he had his playground jacket on when we left, and I was able to borrow some tourquise and yellow snowpants from the lost and found. We bought gloves.

From March

We tried to make it home after 3 days of skiing and snowboarding in time for a nap, but time sort of slips away sometimes when it's been snowing and then the sun comes out. But we made it home eventually. While Jack and Dave finally got their naps in, Luke was busy helping to build an igloo.

From March

The deer were hanging out too:

From March

To be continued...

Next up: Adventures in Sledding

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Marking His Territory

Is everyone sick of the whole thing where I talk about how Jack is possessed by Bean? Are you like, "We know, we know. Your baby barks. Quit beating it with a dead horse (as my friend Holly was known to say)"?

Well I have just one more story.

Today I was trying to change a diaper when I realized I did not have a diaper within arms reach. Because I was in the living room. I said, "Luke, please run and grab a diaper. Jack, don't pee."

But then Jack got a glint in his eye, and a set in his jaw, and there was a little something about his stance, so I said, "LUKE! Please hurry with that diaper! Jack, don't pee, don't pee, don't pee!"

Luke sauntered in with the diaper some time after Jack had taken 3 steps back and peed on the tiny 5x8 rug, the only area on the main floor where the wood floor is covered.

I was shaking my fist at the heavens. No! No! No!

Luke said, resignedly, "Mom, Jack only peed there because that is where Bean used to pee."

(In other news, it may be time for potty training.)

You Might Be A Mom If...

If I were to rip off Jeff Foxworthy and start a comedy act about being a mom, I might use a lame line like this one:

If the highlight of your week is finding Tension Tamer tea on sale (buy one get one) at the grocery... You might be a mom.

Of course, that isn't really true. Luke has had some major milestones in the fine motor department. He's learning to tie his shoes and how to buckle a belt. It's big. See, he has holes in almost every pair of pants and I couldn't bring myself to buy a bunch more size 5 pants when he'll grow out of them immediately. But 6 is way too big. I almost cracked and bought some pants at Target, but then that same week the snap broke on a practically new pair. So Dave picked up 5 pairs of pants for a $12.00 total at Savers. Unfortunately they don't all have the adjustable waist so they are too big. At first I thought, "great, what a waste." Then I realized that there are things that could be done about this problem! I could sew elastic into the waste! In these hard economic times, I could salvage the $2.00 pants with a little seamstressing. Good, old fashioned do-it-yourselfedness. I was sharing this revelation to Dave and he said, "Or he could just wear a belt." Apparently that is how men keep their pants up.

Also big! His picture was in the paper. So cute. I rarely have time for the paper in the morning, but this must have been the one day this week where everyone's alarm went off on time. So I glanced at the paper and there he was!

Jack has an ear infection, poor little guy. He's been pretty uncomfortable. And I stayed home with him Wednesday and a half day today. I am so lucky I can work from home. Otherwise, I would have used 4.5 out of my 6 sick days for the year this month already. Good times!

On the bright side, Jack has gotten really good with signs since he has been in the toddler room and his vocabulary seems to be exploding. He can sign more, please, thank you. And he sort of says more please and thank you. And basketball. It sounds like "boy-guh-ball". And he says, "Eh uh. Eh uh. Eh uh." Which means, "may I please have that?"

So that is all the rambling for now. Time for some tension tamer.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Bus Language

Growing up in Dave's household there were certain words that fell under the category of bus language because the first time you heard them was on the bus to school. I was a walker, so I never took the bus, but I did acquire quite a colorful vocabulary somehow, and I have been silently or not so silently swearing since a tender age. In fact, the only way I got through the stress of Sr. Joan of Arc's fourth grade class was to open my desktop, stick my head in as far as it would go and let the expletives fly. But I have cleaned up my act and I am happy to say, that Luke has yet to say one actual swear word. (He has certainly never said anything to rival a certain child I know, that said, in front of her grandma, "Get the hell out of here you stupid-ass cat.")

In fact, when Dave accidentally referred to himself as a dumbass, Luke said, "Daddy, you're not the dumbess." Then he looked a little confused and corrected himself, "Daddy, you're not the dumbest."

So it was very surprising this past weekend when Luke was playing star wars legos on the wii and he yelled out, "Take that you shin head!"

"What did you say?"

"Take that you shin head!"

"Ahh! That's not nice! Where did you hear that? Who says that? Never say that again!?" That was Dave's reaction. I would have tried to get answers to one question at a time, but what was done was done. And we both managed not to laugh at all.

While the first near swear was mildly horrifying, I am happy to have a new phrase for my repertoire!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Luke, Luke, Does Not Like Puke

Luke and Jack and I were playing hot wheels in Luke's room on Sunday. It was a really fun time! Until Jack sort of threw up on Luke's carpeting. Luke jumped up, screamed, ran in some circles, and then ran screaming out of the room and continued carrying on elsewhere in the house. I grabbed a kleenex and wiped up the tiny mess while Jack and I snickered at Luke.

Luke finally came back and asked, "Is it over? Is he done puking? Is the mess cleaned up? Ugh! My carpet! Jack puked on my carpet!"

Then Jack looked at me, leaned over and pretended to throw up, but in actuality, just spit onto the carpet. Luke ran screaming from the room and Jack just looked at me and started snickering again.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Dummening Family Roundup

I'll start with a dummening story in which I am not the main character:

I was driving through the post office mail box area and the young lady in front of me had her car parked and she was standing outside of it studying each of the mailboxes for clues. After she noticed me, she sort of gave up and decided to go inside the post office for help. But on the way she passed my friendly face and turned to me for advice.

"Do you know if you can put letters to any zip code in there?"

"Yes, yes you can. Any zip code."


***Moving on to Luke ***

Luke has been getting a different Spiderman comic book every week for about 8 weeks running. Just today I said, "Wow, are they any other types of books at the library?" And he said, "I don't even want to read this one because Peter Parker has big earrings and looks like a girl." Well, Luke, that is because you checked out Spidergirl.

*** Dave ***

OK, Dave is practically perfect in every way, but he got Dora the Explorer yogurt at the grocery. Dora. The. Explorer. A six year old boy cannot be caught dead with Dora yogurt. Unless that boy is faced with the option of a yogurtless lunch. I told him just to say his Dad was a big Dora fan, and he accidentally switched the yogurt. Still, packing that lunch made for a rough morning.

***Ok - I saved the best for last ***

A loaf of bread, sweet potato french fries, and corn bread have all resulted in burns to my hand, fingers and hand again, respectively. I had to take the day off from baking yesterday just to preserve my delicate skin. I guess it isn't that funny that I can't take something out of the oven without burning myself, so I'll share the other dummening story.

I was bathing suit shopping on Sunday and I could mine that adventure for a weeks worth of stories, but I'll just pick the one. I was specifically looking for tankinis and nothing was fitting right. Then I tried on one that that seemed promising because it was a little tighter. Hmm, really tight. Wouldn't it be funny if I needed the Target changing room attendant to help me out of this thing? And by funny, I mean ohmygodiamstuckinthistankiniIcantgetitoff!!! And by tankini, I mean one piece. Hmm, I guess that explains why I couldn't find the matching bottoms.

15 Month Checkup

Luke recently had his 15 month check up and the milestone checklist went like this:

Q.How many words does he know?
Q. Has he put two words together?
A. Yes. (This isn't really true, it just sounded true to me at the time. Unless "Ruff, Gwirl" counts.)
Q. Can he stack blocks?
A. Yes.
Q. 4 blocks?
A. No
Q. Two blocks?
A. Yes
Q. If you put a crayon in his hand does he scribble?
A. Yes
Q. etc. etc. etc
A. Yes. Yes. Yes
Q. Does he imitate you doing housework?
A. ? (queue crickets chirping.)

OK. of course I said yes. As you can see above, I assume that Jack is a borderline genius, or at least on track, so the answer to all questions must be yes, so I don't have to think about them very hard. I was obsessed with Luke's milestones, and I know he was behind on the block stacking, so I was surprised when I saw Jack stack a block and I made a mental note of it for the checkup. But as usual, I answered yes to everything and then came home and ran through the list with Dave and friends to see where I had exaggerated. We agreed that he isn't really putting two words together. And that, "does he imitate you doing housework?" seems to be a question left over from an earlier era.

He imitates me working on my laptop. He imitates me talking on the phone. He takes knives out of the dishwasher. But that is probably less about imitating and more about augmenting his weapons cache that I can only imagine is somewhere behind some curtains, with his emergency food supplies. Also, when Aunt Suzy said, "Come here kitty" and patted her knees, Jack patted his knees. So clearly, he can imitate people... But hmm, housework?

Now I could go two ways with this:
1.) How sexist! Why ask if he can imitate me doing housework? Why not ask about the million other things I do? Why not just ask if he imitates me?
2.) Ha ha ha, I never do housework, so how could he even know how to imitate me?

But the more I think about it, the more I think that it would be great if Jack was imitating me doing housework. While it's true that I am not the best housekeeper in the world, and it's also true that I outsource a lot of the housekeeping, I still do a lot of housekeeping, and so does Dave. But a lot of it happens after kids are in bed, during nap time, and before they wake up in the morning. And maybe if more of that happened when the kids were awake, then there would be more imitating. And by imitating I mean, I can't believe I have two little indentured servants in the house and I haven't been making them work for their keep!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

We All Have Our Quirks

I have been working a lot. It's very annoying. I have been home 3 days with sick kids and I have been making up the time in the evenings. Also, when I go in to work, I still have more to do in the evenings. It's really cutting into my blogging time. Also, my life.

And that is how I found myself putting away laundry and cleaning the kitchen at 11:05 p.m. this evening.

Earlier today I picked up all the recycling from the bathroom (toilet paper roll, shampoo bottle, soap box) and carried it some of the way to the recycling bin. Later, I saw Luke standing a toilet paper roll on the counter and he said, "Please don't move this toilet paper roll unless I say it's OK." I said, "OK."

After his shower, Luke came out of the bathroom holding some towel thread. I said, "What do you have there?" He said, "some thread. It's very special to me. I am going to put it somewhere special." I said, "OK."

So when I was trying to clean off the counter before bed, and I knocked over the toilet paper roll, I wasn't surprised to find some frayed towel thread and a shell inside it. Amused, but not surprised.

Sunday, March 8, 2009


I have had a few posts about how Bean is sort of still with us, because Jack acts like Bean all the time. He rummages through peoples bags looking for crackers, hides food behind the curtain, ransacks the lazy susan, barks at squirrels, eats crumbs off the floor, etc. But lately I started thinking that since Jack was there when Bean died, that maybe something supernatural occurred. Instead of thinking that it is as if Bean is still with us, I am thinking that Bean really is still with us. I think I could re-remake the Shaggy D.A. into a movie with a baby that's really a dog. (The concept needs some work.)

I suppose most of those things listed above are normal baby activities, except for the barking at squirrels. At this age, Luke could copy every animal sound I made, and perform them on demand. Lion=roar, Cow=moo, etc. Now Jack hears a bird in the wilderness, or a train miles away, or a siren, or the dishwasher running and can imitate it perfectly. But after 3 days with his Aunt Suzy and Grandmom and kitty cat Cleo, he would still not meow. But he would chase the cat and bark at her.

But what I think really clinched it for me with this whole Bean possession thing, is that today while I was making dinner, Jack got hungry and impatient and so he crawled under his high chair and started whining.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Hello Labor Intensive Cupcake!

I bought Hello Cupcake this year with a Christmas gift certificate, and I am on my third creation. The first was simple, and the second wasn't worth photographing. The third, and the reason I bought the book, turned out quite well:

And it was easy. All I had to do was bake the muffins, and then have my father in law cut mini donuts in half, my sister in law cut starburst and chocolate cookies, my mother in law cup up marshmallows while I iced everything together. Then after the last layer of icing, my sister in law and mother in law helped me assemble all the pieces. Then we spent about 20 minutes figuring how to transport them to school. Huge success! They were devoured in under 5 minutes.

Thanks for your help, family!


Luke and his posse hit the terrain park this weekend for his birthday and we filmed another video or two for the retrospective at the X-games in a few years. Dave says, "Go Tommy!" But Luke goes first, then Tommy, then Fritz.

This next one is the chip off the old block video:

So far six is an interesting age. He can be very polite when he wants something, yet he thinks "No" is an acceptable response when I ask him to do something. He is so much bigger than that little skier that everyone thought was so adorable when he passed them,
but from the lift over the terrain park I still hear, "Did you see that little boy go over that jump?!"

He can mountain bike and ski, but I still get to tuck him in at night, and he'll still slip his hand into mine when we cross the street.

He has become modest enough to say, "I need privacy when I change my clothes!" And yet my reply has to be, "Then don't change in the living room."