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Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Good Life Part II

We were hanging out in the sunshine, enjoying the warmth on our bare arms and legs. Our tummies were full from lunch and there was the faint hint of a breeze in the air. The only sound was the happy chirping of the birds above us and the breeze rustling in the tress, now full again with leaves. I could smell the spring and sunshine in the air as we three sat facing the same direction, me slightly behind them. I looked at their content little baby faces from inches behind them, and I realized it was a perfect Kodak moment. I was desperate to capture the moment, but of course I did not have my camera handy. I took off into the house to get it, and I did my best to salvage the moment when I returned. I was only away for seconds, but the moment was gone when I returned. That is exactly what makes moments like this so worthy of being cherished: they are fleeting and fragile.

Dear Son realized by this time that I was looking for a good picture, and he made it clear he didn't want to be in it. I settled for admiring his towhead full of blond curls from the back. As his hair gets longer, his curls get wilder.

He couldn't stand it, and gave in to his curiosity about what I was doing behind him and why I wasn't arguing about looking at the back of his head.

Dear Daughter wanted to be in the picture about as badly as Dear Son DIDN'T want to be in the picture. So I indulged her. We had been picking strawberries in the garden just before this, and Daughter loves to wash them in the outdoor well faucet and eat them as quickly as I can pick them. The evidence is still on her chin.

As his big sister hammed it up, Dear Son began feeling left out and jumped into the game. And I decided right then and there that if I hadn't already decided it, that my life is as full and blessed as a life can get.

...and that's when Dear Son started getting cocky.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Got. To. Catch. Up!

Dear Husband took Friday off to make this a four day weekend for us. So here we are, three days into the four day weekend, and I'm beginning to get caught up on Life. This is why I never get caught up on typical weekends. Two days is (SOMETIMES) just long enough to take the edge off. I never feel rested or caught up before the week starts again unless I get about four days to try.

And so...a month after Grandma and Grandpa M left from their visit with us, I am FINALLY getting pictures and narraitve loaded! *sigh*

Grandma gave Dear Daughter an apron that was hers when she was a little girl (made by her mother, Dear Daughter's Great Grandmother). So far Dear Daughter is the ONLY grandDAUGHTER on either side of the family, and Grandma never got to pass this down to her own children, as they were both boys. Dear Daughter got to wear the apron to bake cupcakes with Grandma, which was a pretty fun experience (for both of them, I think!)

Dear Son likes to make cupcakes, too. Look how he concentrates on the icing. If you look close enough, you can see some evidence of tasting on his cheeks!

This is the cow I posted about a couple weeks ago. I saw him munching in our yard when I got up and looked out the window one morning. We don't own any cows, by the way. He munched for awhile and then wandered into the woods and we never saw him again.

Of course, no visit is ever complete without a backyard bonfire complete with S'mores.

And the last picture is totally random. We've been seeing a lot of Cardinal couples at our birdfeeders. I actually saw the male Cardinal going to the feeder and getting seeds to bring back to his sweetie. He would pass them from his beak to hers and then go back for more while she stood nearby and munched. It was really sweet.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Daughter's Dance Recital

FINALLY! The planets and stars all aligned tonight so I could manage to post a couple pics from Dear Daughter's dance recital. I didn't get any action shots as flash photography was not allowed. You know, so that you will buy the portraits and DVD's that the professionals are selling. Whatever.

It was a looooong recital and Dear Son got antsy before the intermission and began begging to "go home." He was only interested in what was going on on stage at intermittent intervals. The most memorable of these intervals was during one woman's solo classic ballet performance. She had on a very classic tutu and danced to a very classic piece of ballet music. Until this point, all the performances were groups and not individuals, and many performances had been modern or jazz in style. Dear Son caught on right away that there was only one performer on stage this time. As the spotlight centered on the ballerina and a hush settled over the crowd, Dear Son's voice piped up loudly in the otherwise silent auditorium. "Why is there only ONE?!" he demanded rather loudly. His Daddy and I shushed him sternly. He doesn't "shush," mind you, unless you provide him with an answer that he finds satisfactory. I whispered in his ear that there is only SUPPOSED to be "one" in this performance, and then I braced myself for his LOUD protest to continue to ring out over the silent auditorium. I was totally relieved that he was actually placated with this explanation. About two minutes passed before he piped up loudly again, "But why is she HAPPY by herself?" Indeed, she had a large smile across her face for the entire performance. Dear Son apparently thought it odd that a person could be happy unless joined together with others. His Daddy and I shushed him again and I quickly tried to offer him an explanation that would appease him before he continued his loud protest. It didn't work that time, and we had to continue to try new explanations in between shushes until he was satisfied.

As for Dear Daughter, she performed "Under the Sea" as a tap piece with her class, and "Once Upon a December" as a ballet piece with her class. She certainly doesn't mind being on stage, and she was pumped up on adrenaline the entire evening.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Milestones and Random Jibberish

I dared not speak up until now for fear I'd jinx it, but Dear Son has now (finally!) successfully gone an entire month with only one or two poopy pants accidents. He had regressed back to peeing in his pants once he got the pooping in the potty thing down, but he has proven himself enough for me to now trust him wearing his superhero underpants all the time except overnight and on long outings. Who'd have thought that my second born would be three years and three months old when he finally reached this milestone after my firstborn had it down by 20 months? I've heard it's a "boy thing," so that's our excuse.

And Dear Daughter reached her own milestone today, which would be riding her bicycle without training wheels. She can make it all the way down our 250 foot driveway and back on her first day wihtout training wheels. If I can figure out how, I'll post a video. This milestone evokes a combination of pride and bittersweetness inside me. I don't remember if I was five years old like my daughter when I first rode a bicycle without training wheels, but I remember the day it first happened for me. I blogged about it a couple years ago.

I may have pics from Dear Daughter's dance recital last Saturday once I get them copied off Dear Mom's camera. We thought our camera was not working (which we discovered just before the show) and so we did not get any pictures on it. Fortunately we got some on my mom's camera. Now that the recital is over, our camera is working again. Go figure.

At five years of age, Dear Daughter has completed two years of ballet and tap dance lessons, a year of piano lessons, learned to ride a two wheeled bicycle, and completed the first grade in every area except Language Arts--in which she is working at second grade level. It's a bit overwhelming for me to remember that just 6 years ago she had not even yet exited my womb and entered this world!

I'm way behind on things like blogging, which is why my posts are so random and scattered and few and far in between these days. I've intended to post about Grandpa and Grandma M's visit from Oregon for a week or more now, but I've wanted to include some pictures with a post. The problem is, I do all my work from my laptop and most often from the upstairs level of our home even though the office is in the lower level of our home. The pictures are housed on the downstairs desktop and accessed via wireless network on my laptop. Whenever I consider getting the post done, it is usually late at night when I'm finishing some work in bed with my laptop. If I decide I can keep my eyes open long enough to do the post, I realize I still can't because the downstairs desktop is turned off. This means I cannot access the pictures. While I may have enough energy to do the post at that wee hour, I don't have the energy to walk to the furthermost room of the house on an entire different floor to turn on the desktop. I've even spent a couple hours here and there in the downstairs office a few times in the past week or two and not managed to remember to turn on the desktop and nab the pics while I'm down there. So, in the amount of time it took me to explain this, I could have gone downstairs to turn on the desktop to the get pics, but it wouldn't really matter because once again I do not have time right now to do the post. It's also getting late and I need to get the kids to bed.By the time I complete that task, I will either forget about the blog post again or I will have too many other things to cram in before I can go to sleep myself tonight, and blog posting will just not be a priority anymore.

I wonder what it's like to be bored?

Friday, May 15, 2009

Lock Her Up!

Last week I brought my daughter with me to go clothes shopping. I instructed her to sit on the bench as I did a "fashion show" for her. She gave her thumbs up or thumbs down on each piece as I tried them on. When it came to the shiny, hot pink blouse and ankle length skirt, she exclaimed, "Mommy! You look like a hottie!" Hottie?! I quizzed my daughter as I implored her to tell me where in the world she learned the term "hottie." She was unable to tell me. I felt caught between flattery (after all, she's called me a Beluga Whale in the past) and dismay at my five year old.

Just as I was moving past this incident, convinced again of my daughter's five-year-old innocence, I heard her jabbering as we waited at the cashier's stand at a big name department store. She was playing with her toy flip phone and announcing that she just received a "text message." The elderly woman ahead of us in line was buying herself a new bassiere. She whirled around at my daughter's words and quizzed her on how old she is and what does she know about "text messages"? Indeed. I decided then and there that I am locking her up until she is thirty!

Later in the car on the way home Dear Daughter's voice addressed me from the back seat, "Mommy? What's a text message?"

At least she didn't ask me what a "hottie" is.

Dear God, send me help. FAST!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Life in the Country

Top 10 pieces of evidence of life in the country...

1) The five deer that ambled into our backyard a couple weeks ago. The entire family sat on the floor of the master bedroom and admired them discreetly from the windows for several minutes.

2) The two mallard ducks that made our pond their home for a few days during the incessant rain.

3) The Blue Heron that decided to roost in front of our pond one afternoon, also during the incessant rain (I was beginning to feel like Snow White that particular day).

4) The armadillos that are digging up the lawn (All. Five. Acres. Of. It.) with odd shaped "pot holes".

5) The multitude of froggy noises that are erupting everywhere in our woods and can be heard through the open windows of our home at night.

6) The fact that we listen to frogs chirping at night instead of noisy neighbors or traffic.

7) The spiders that are beginning to show up around the house again.

8) The ticks that we are having to vigilantly try to control, but have nonetheless made appearances on our kids and dog a few times already this season.

9) The owl I hear hooting when I step outside with the dog for the last time each evening.

10) The gargantuan bugs that are beginning to appear again out of seemingly nowhere.

11) The tadpoles that Grandma M helped the kids catch out of the pond, which have become the kids' annual "science project" and which are now sitting in a mason jar on the kitchen island, gradually turning into little tree frogs who will grow up to chirp just as loudly as their parents by the time we release them to return to the pond.

12) The cow that I saw wandering about our yard, munching on our grass one morning when I awakened and opened the blinds in the master bedroom. Please note that we do not own any of our own cows, and neither do any of our closest neighbors. We watched him munch for about a half hour before he wandered off in the woods. We've not seen him since.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Supervision Required

As many of you know, my Dear Daughter has long been known for her precocious vocabulary. I'm pretty sure she came out of the womb speaking in full, verbose paragraphs. I also think it's fair to say that while he is not quite as verbally precocious as his big sister, Dear Son doesn't deserve to live too much in her shadow.

Dear Husband recently had to work late on night. He optimistically expected to be home just in time to kiss the kids goodnight. Alas, in the world of computer geek-dom, glitches tend to happen that make the final goal take much longer than originally expected. I put the kids to bed alone that night. As I lay in the dark on Dear Son's twin mattress with the boy-child snuggled in the crook of one arm and the girl-child snuggled in the crook of the other arm, Dear Son yawned and asked if Daddy would be home soon. I've made the point strongly in the past that my Dear Son is very much a DADDY'S boy and Mommy only rates a step better than no one at all if Daddy isn't home. If Daddy is home, I can just forget about it. So, despite Dear Son's pining for his daddy, I was enjoying some second-fiddle snuggling with him. After several moments of silence, Dear Son yawned, and then pensively said, "I wish Daddy was home to supervise us."

After I clarified with my three-year-and-four-month-old child that he did indeed say "supervise" AND used the the word correctly in a sentence, I theorized that he was echoing a word I have used several times when Dear Husband is at home and I really need to get something done that the kids' are not allowing me to get done. This phrase is, "Honey, would you PULEEEZE supervise the kids so that I can get (fill in the blank) done?!"

Even if Dear Son was only echoing a word that he has heard me use, it was still precious to hear how he had retained the word as well as its meaning and demonstrated its correct usage in a sentence.

And believe me, by the end of fifteen solid hours of managing the kids all by myself, I too was wishing Daddy were home to "supervise"!