Monday, June 22, 2009

Making faces

Alex was making faces one night at dinner, scrunching up his nose and snorting. He was making Faye laugh, so that was keeping him going. By the time we got the camera he of course wasn't doing it as cute, but maybe I'll get it another time. I need to remember to keep the camera nearby!

video

Friday, June 19, 2009

Biker baby

Andy got me a 'new' bike yesterday, since he's been using my red Schwinn I got in college to bike the kids around. It is definitely a cruiser bike. By that I mean in no way could you even think about riding it fast, but that is the last thing I want to do. I like to ride very leisurely. So it probably fits me well. It is a 1969 English Robin Hood. It is shiny gold with a white leather seat and white handlebars. It is very hard to believe that it is 40 years old, as it is in great shape with only a few scratches to the paint and almost all original parts (I think). It also has a generator light, but I don't think that will get much use as I don't frequently ride at night.



We bought it from a guy Andy knows in Urbana who sells and fixes up bikes near campus. I had never met this guy, but somehow I felt as if I had met him before. Andy figured it was because it reminded me of Peoria. Yep - it was a College Street experience. Just a different street near a different college, but still strange. For those of you who don't know - Andy and my brother used to live on College Street near Bradley,when Andy and I first dated and my brother attended Bradley, and it was quite a street. I don't know if there is any way to describe it.

We searched the stores and found this front bike seat for Alex. It is supposed to be a little safer having the baby in the front, although the straps did keep sliding down his shoulders as I was riding. I think he is still a little young so he'll grow into it some. I love the helmet, but he was not real excited about it. That is also a little big as you can see it sliding down over his eyes, but it was the smallest I could find and looks so cute.



Tuesday, June 16, 2009

1 year pictures

I can hardly believe that in just a couple weeks Alex will be turning 1! It seems like just yesterday he was a little baby, and now he is a big kid, or so he thinks. This year has gone by unbelievably fast. When you have a baby, everyone tells you how fast it goes and to enjoy it, because before long they are all grown up. It is so true! Faye and Drew will be 5 this year, and in another year starting Kindergarten! Where has the time gone?

It has been such a different year than Faye and Drew's 1st year. Their 1st year Andy and I were so tired and exhausted we were not able to enjoy it, but I have truly enjoyed this year. I just wish it could last a little bit longer - without the sleepless nights.

Alex took his 1 year photos this morning, and they turned out really cute. He didn't want to stand still, so all his standing photos are action shots, but still really adorable. I think you can see in one of the photos that his foot is off the ground. Lately he has been doing a nose scrunching smile, and he did it for the camera today. You can see his pictures here.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Muffins

I made muffins for breakfast sometime this past week - not really sure which day, as all days are about the same when you're a stay at home mom. They turned out really well and the kids and I ate most of them before Andy had a chance to have one. So I made them again Saturday morning - and like I said they must have been good, as both Drew and Alex sat in front of the oven while they baked, waiting for one. Drew even went and got a chair so he could watch them bake better.



Alex is watching me make the muffins - He will hold on with one hand and sign 'please' with the other. It is so cute to see his little head peeking over the top of the counter!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Sleeping and signing

Alex has been taking great naps lately, probably because he still wakes up at night several times, for no real reason. Teething may be causing some of his problems. I always laugh every time I see him sleeping in his crib, mouth open, on his tummy with his bum sticking up. Babies are so cute sleeping...



He has learned to sign 'please' now, and received more cookies yesterday than an 11 month old baby should ever have (I'm not sure they should even have a cookie). I made chewy vanilla cookies while Faye and Drew were napping, and he climbed up on the step stool and kept signing please. I couldn't resist giving him some. He got another cookie from daddy when he got home from work. He saw Andy eating a cookie and went chasing him down signing please, and even Andy gave him one.

I can do it!

I bought a reward chart for Faye and Drew last week. Another mom of twins I know recommended the charts, and wow, it does get results. I barely had Drew's chart out of the package and put together, and he was running around the house cleaning up toys, trying to make his bed, and telling me over and over, "thanks mom."




So for those of you with small kids or about to have small kids, think about trying one of these charts. I got mine online, from Kenson Parenting. The recommended age is from 3 - 10 years old. The chart comes with 20 different Velcro tabs, so you can choose each week what you want to work on. There are supplemental packs you can buy for other things, such as school or outside chores. The 20 it comes with are great - we have feed the pets, water the plants, set the table, wash the dishes, go potty, get dressed, plus the ones you see and more! The stars are plastic and also Velcro, so you can keep using them over and over. We're working on making the bed, brushing teeth, saying please and thank you, cleaning up their mess, good table manners, and no whining for Faye and no mean/potty words for Drew. At the bottom of the chart is a place to write with a dry erase marker how many stars they need each week, and then a place to write what they get for a reward. I let them choose their reward for the first week, and Drew wants a new monster truck, and Faye wants a new Strawberry Shortcake toy. They are not getting toys every week, but I figured they should choose the first one. Other suggestions they have for rewards are extra time with mom or dad, or an extra book at bedtime if they get enough stars that day. So there are tons of possibilities. Sometimes even getting the star is reward enough - it is amazing what a kid will do for a star!

We are just getting started using the chart, but so far they are doing really well. Some of the tasks are harder than others, such as good table manners. I'm picky about that one so they've only got a star once for that, but hopefully once they earn their 1st reward they'll see the benefits and be ready to try even harder!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Marker

This is what happens when you leave a 4 year old and an 11 month old alone with a marker for 30 seconds. Good thing it is washable!! Drew even managed to get the bottoms of both his feet - all while I was putting away a dirty diaper in the next room.






Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Worn out kids...

I finally wore out the kids yesterday. First time ever!! Faye and Drew started a new summer school and their first day was yesterday. They will go every Tuesday and Thursday through the month of July. They loved their 1st year of preschool and had really awesome teachers - what other preschool teachers make scrapbooks for each student, with photos of the kids and projects they made throughout the year? But their school doesn't offer any summer classes, and I think both the kids and I benefit from some time apart each week. So I enrolled them in another school for the summer.

Andy and I went in with them and met their teachers, told them goodbye, and made a quick exit. The kids were a little nervous about a new school, and so was I , but it went great! They made crafts, had music time and snack time, and played in the gym right beside their classroom that has slides and tunnels and all sorts of fun kiddie things. That was where I found them when I came to pick them up - and they did not want to leave. So that was a great sign and a huge sigh of relief for me! I spoke with their teacher for awhile, and she said they did wonderful for their 1st day, but noticed they were both a little shy, Drew more than Faye, but she said she noticed and will try to help them with that.



After school we had lunch and I hauled them off to the outdoor pool for swimming. It was around 80 degrees, but windy so it was a little cold. Faye didn't mind at all. She is a little swimmer and loves the water, no matter how cold it is. It was a little more difficult to get me and Drew and Alex in the water, but we managed for a little bit. It looked like a storm was coming, so we hopped out, and just in time too, as the lifeguards had to clear the pool 5 minutes later. By 6pm all the kids were sleeping, one on the couch and two on the floor, and we had to really struggle to get them awake to eat dinner, then off to bed they went. Drew didn't wake up until after 8am this morning - so they were tired.


I think I'll take them to the pool everyday I can this summer!!