Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Pumpkin carving

The kids and I finally had a laid back day at home today. It was the 1st day in a long time that we stayed home; no school or swim lessons or trips to the library or gym. We thought about swimming, but we've all had colds and coughs and we really just needed a day at home to relax and catch up.

We decided while we had the time we should carve our pumpkins, so we spent most of the morning working on that. The kids had a great time with it and had some great design ideas. Unfortunately we didn't have the right carving equipment to do all their ideas, but what we did turned out OK I think.

I did all the carving, but the kids did do most of the seed scraping. None of the kids like touching the inside of the pumpkins - too slimy for them, but they did well with the spoons. Alex tried eating it a few times, but didn't really like it. He didn't really have the idea of taking out the seeds. As I took them out, he put them back in his little pumpkin till it was full, but he sure had a good time doing it.

We also decided we should make Halloween brownies today, so after lunch the kids helped with that. They all love to help bake, mostly because they get to lick the beaters, bowl and spoon when finished. It is a disaster, but so much fun for them. Plus, since we're vegan, we don't have to worry about the raw batter being harmful because there are no eggs!!

Drew manages to stay relatively neat (he almost never gets messy), but Faye and Alex don't have much luck with that.

Monday, October 19, 2009

A difficult week, but some fun too

Our little guy is teething and it is really bothering him. He's been working on getting his first 4 molars for a few weeks now, but the past week it has really been bothering him. He has been refusing to eat, nap and sleep, so it is making life a little difficult for all of us. I've been giving him Tylenol at night, which seems to help a little, but then he wakes up a few hours later screaming again. One night he was awake at least every hour if not more. Awww... I feel so bad for the little guy. Andy got up with him one night and gave him some more Tylenol, but I hate to give him too much. We can't drug him all day for a month or more. He was miserable Sunday night and wouldn't stop screaming, so we also bought some Orajel and he finally was able to take a nap about 5pm. I hate teething! It is so cute when they get their first little teeth, but it is so hard on them I hate to see him in pain. Hopefully soon his molars will be in and he'll have a break from teething for awhile!

I took all the kids swimming with me on Saturday afternoon. It's great now that Faye and Drew can swim on their own. Alex loves swimming as much if not more than Faye. He doesn't mind going completely under water and he already knows how to blow bubbles. He has no fear, which is a little scary for me. He wants to climb out of the pool and jump back in, and he doesn't care if anyone is there to catch him. When I take him out to the middle of the pool, he will actually swim as hard as he can to get back to the side of the pool so he can climb up and jump again. I did let go of him once and he went under a little, but he was actually swimming and he didn't seem to mind at all. He just comes back up smiling like crazy and having so much fun. He has learned to close his mouth most of the time so he doesn't swallow too much water. Wow... our newest little swimmer! He may be ready for the mommy and me swim lessons!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

1st haircut

I took Alex to get his 1st haircut today. He was starting to get a mullet or something going on back there, so it was time. The 1st haircut is one of those moments when you know your baby is growing up. I really don't want him to get big so fast, but it happens so I try to go along with it, since really what else can you do? He can't stay a baby forever.

He did not want to sit in the chair by himself, he even started crying, so I held him and rubbed his back till he was calm. She began cutting the back of his hair and playing peek-a-boo with him, and before long he was OK with it. Well, we did give him a sucker to distract him, which helped until he dropped it in the hair(he also had it stuck to my shirt and his forehead at one point in time), but we were almost finished by then. He sat up and started looking around and even smiling at the lady cutting his hair. He looks like such a big boy now!

When he was finished we gave him a new sucker and he loved it! He waved bye-bye about 5 times before we left. I think he'll be ready to go back next time. Maybe not for the haircut, but definitely for the sucker.

He's enjoying the sucker we gave him on the way home. He was so sticky by the time he was finished with it, he almost needed a bath.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Safety Day

Faye and Drew had their last day of swim classes today. It also happened to be safety day, one of their favorites! This is their 4th swim class this year, so they know the drill. They get to wear life jackets and also ride the 'boat'. It is just so much fun to watch them enjoy this!! I of course didn't even have my camera, but I ran to my locker and grabbed my phone. What would we do without camera phones?

Their swim instructor the past few weeks was so nice and the kids really had a great time with her. She's telling the kids all about life jackets here and how to jump in the water while wearing one. Its amazing how well the kids listen at class - not at all like home!

And now getting ready to jump...

The boat is the best part though... they rode back and forth across the pool about 50 times. The swim instructor tells them about water safety and what to do if they fall off a boat, then proceeds to rock the boat until they fall off. They LOVE it!!! And they did that over and over again - they didn't want to get out of the pool to come home.

Swimming across after being knocked off...

After class today - Drew did actually get out of the water and let me take his photo, then proceeded to go back by the pool and throw all the toys in, thinking the teacher would let him get back in to retrieve them. Nice try, but no luck!

You can see him here in the background throwing in all the toys! What a kid.

Faye doesn't want a break from swim lessons. She loves swimming, but I don't want her to get sick of it either so we're making them both take a break and they can start back up next year sometime. I've enrolled them in Gymnastics starting next week and they both seem excited about it. It is just a once a week, one hour class, starting on Thursday. It is a preschool class for 4-5 year olds, focusing on the floor exercises and bars, and maybe the vault towards the end of class.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Negangard Pumpkin Patch

It was finally a sunny nice fall day today, so we decided to take the kids out to the pumpkin patch while it was nice. We took them to Negangard Pumpkin patch last year, and we all loved it so we decided to go there again this year. There are others around and some closer, but they just have too much stuff. This one is just a basic pumpkin picking place; no pony rides or gift shops or bakeries. No overpriced junk. It is about a 25 minute drive from our house, near Sidney, IL.

Alex fell asleep on the way and wasn't quite sure what to think when we pulled up. Faye and Drew remembered the place from last year and quickly ran to grab a wagon. They group all the same priced pumpkins together - the bigger ones are more expensive, but really I think they have great prices. The kids are standing near the $2 pumpkins which are really quite large and are the ones we brought home. They go up to $5 for the really big pumpkins, and then the humongous ones are individually priced, usually over $10.

Alex liked the littlest pumpkins best, so he picked out a few of those. They were just the right size for him to pick up. They were only $.25, and he would not stop grabbing them and putting them in the wagon. As he put one in, the kids or I took one out and put it back.

They always have a ton of squash for sale really cheap, so we loaded up the wagon with lots of that too. Alex really seemed to get the idea of putting things in the wagon, so we had to really watch him or it was very quickly full of miscellaneous items. We all had a great time and we spent less than $15!

Here is a photo we took last year, and another one we took this year. What a difference a year makes!! Last year the children would not sit for their photo, but instead Faye was climbing and Drew was hiding. How funny! We do have the addition of Superman this year, but a much nicer photo!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

15 Months

Alex is 15 months old now and had his well baby check-up this morning. He weighed in at 22lbs, which only puts him in the 16th percentile, but he is almost 32 inches tall, which is the 70th percentile. So he is a tall and thin baby. I really don't think he is that thin; he has this huge belly that is always sticking out and is so adorable. He's discovered his belly button and plays with that all the time now, especially since it is really an outie due to a small hernia. The pediatrician assures me that it should heal on its own in time. She is not concerned about his weight at this age, since he is so busy running around she said it is natural for babies of this age to be thin.

He had to get 3 shots this morning and he did great. He didn't even cry, but he was not happy with the nurse. He was completely unaware as the nurse gave him his first shot, but quickly looked at me to see what was going on. After the second shot his face started turning red very quickly, and by the time he got the 3rd shot his whole face was bright red and he was really really angry. But it was all over and no crying or screaming as I expected. He would not wave goodbye to the nurse, and waving is his favorite thing to do right now, but otherwise he seemed his normal self.

He was very very tired, probably from no morning nap and the shots, so he is sound asleep in his room now. I love how peaceful babies look when they are sleeping.

Picture day

The kids had picture day at school today. They seemed very excited about it last night, asking me over and over what they were going to wear. I helped them pick out something nice and they seemed happy with it. Usually they want to decide on their own clothes, which we let them, even if they are really mismatched. Occasionally I do have to send them back to their room to change. It is usually Faye for wearing two different shoes, or a really fancy dress to go play at the park, or just something really old and misfitting that I never got around to taking out of her drawer.

We didn't try school pictures last year as Drew hated getting his picture taken and I didn't want to give that job to the teachers. And wow was it a job! I would be exhausted after taking the kids to get pictures! He has been so much better this year about picture taking. He used to tell me he didn't know how to smile, but now he is trying to smile and it looks so cute. He gets his face all scrunched up.

I have no idea how the school pictures went today. I tried asking the kids, but all I got out of them was that they had to sit on a stool and the photographer said silly words to them. I hope they turn out! They've been talking about fairy tales at school, so they made wands and crowns today. Drew has been really excited about the stuff he made today!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Laundry chute...?

Does anyone know how to install a laundry chute? We really need one in our house. With 3 kids and a shedding dog and a not so neat husband I do so much laundry. It is never ending, and of course I have to carry the laundry from our upstairs to our basement, then back up again.

I spent the morning at the Convenient Care... getting an X-ray on my right foot again. I somehow missed a step on the basement stairs as I was carrying dirty laundry and injured my right foot(am I getting really old?). I really didn't fall, but since I just broke it in February, it was enough to make me think I broke it again. The nurse said the x-ray looked OK, but will send it on for someone else to look at to be sure it is OK. I was so relieved. The last thing I want to do is wear that stupid air cast for another 10 weeks.

My foot is swollen and feels like someone ran over it, but I am walking around OK and putting it up as much as possible, and hope it will feel better soon!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Chicken, Airplane, Rocketship

I had a great morning with the kids! They've been taking swim lessons at the YMCA since April, and are really doing great. They 1st started in the Mini-Pike class, then went through Pike, and are now in Eel. Currently they have swim lessons Tuesday and Thursday mornings, and they are the only 2 in the class so they get a ton of swim time in the pool. I about laughed until I cried this morning watching Faye swimming across the pool. She was swimming on her back on her own, doing chicken, airplane, rocket ship. I don't know if there is another name for this particular stroke, but probably. Anyways, this is how they teach it to the kids, having them do their arms and legs like a chicken, then an airplane, and finally a rocket ship. She is fairly good at this and mostly stays above water and makes it all the way on her own, but for some reason this morning she was having trouble coordinating all those moves. So there was about a 10 second break between each move, in which her whole head would go under water, then she'd come up with a huge smile on her face and proceed to the next step, before that happening again. I think she could have just been messing around, but either way it was so funny! The swim teacher couldn't stop laughing either, which could be why she kept doing it. Faye also made it all the way across the pool on her own doing the backstroke, which was the 1st time for that. Drew hates the backstroke because he is still worried about getting water in his eyes. Their swim teacher was amazed that he could jump in the water on his own and keep his head above water - something she said is a hard thing she has to teach lifeguards, and even they sometimes have trouble learning that!

Alex is having a rough time at swim lessons. I've been taking him in the childcare room with Wendy while the kids have their lesson, trying to get him used to being with someone besides mommy so when I eventually get a job in the next year or two it won't be so difficult. He will be old enough for the 2 year old preschool class in the fall, so we may try that. He is very very attached to me, which is a new thing for me as I didn't go through this with Faye and Drew. With twins things were just different and they were used to not being with mommy all the time or being held all the time.

The 1st time I took Alex in he ran off to play with the toys and we just left. Once he figured out I was gone he was a little upset, but did OK until he saw me when I was picking him up and then he started screaming! The next few times did not go well at all - he screamed and screamed for 20 minutes before I went in to get him. So on Tuesday I sat in there with him and he got a little more used to Wendy and had a lot of fun playing with all the toys. Today when I asked him if he was going to play with Wendy he actually shook his head yes. So in we went, and I sat by him for awhile before leaving. I checked on him a little while later and he was crying, but I left and went back to watch the kids. I think it is harder on me than him, but something I need to get used to! When I went back to get him, he was sitting on the floor and playing with some toys. Another little boy had come in to play, which Wendy said helped a ton. He actually didn't want to leave today - so he is getting through this, and so am I!!

After swim lessons I took them to the store to buy new tennis shoes. They have Velcro shoes, but I figured it was time to teach them how to tie shoes! They probably should already know that - but better late than never. Plus it has been awhile since they've had new shoes, and their feet did grow!! The kids had some birthday money they used, and both picked out a nice pair of Nike's. They of course had to wear them home and will probably wear them the rest of the day, maybe even to bed! The last time they had new shoes they had them on right out of the bath before even getting dressed, and also as soon as they got up with their pj's.

Thanks to everyone who brought, sent, or mailed birthday presents to the kids. The kids are slowly working on sending out thank you's, but it could be awhile before we finish!