Monday, December 31, 2007
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
- 4 new baby dolls from Mommy, both Grandmas and Gigi
- "Good Times Kitchen" apron
- His new bike from Uncle Greg
- A ton of new games, books and puzzles
- Racetrack that was technically a gift for Daddy, who spent almost 2 hours setting it up in Ryan's room tonight and it's STILL not completely assembled!
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Friday, December 21, 2007
Thursday, December 20, 2007
2. Consistency, consistency, consistency!
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Today for the second time, he and Ryan were sent to the office for not following directions to clean up. The first time was a couple of weeks ago and we talked with Ryan, took away privileges for 2 days and he was reminded and asked why the privileges were gone when he would ask for them over those 2 days. I tried explaining the concept behind peer pressure (without using those words yet) letting him know that even though other kids might make wrong choices, he needs to listen to his parents and his teacher and make good choices.
Then today, I was aiding in the classroom, and it happened again. I watched as the other boy did things he wasn’t supposed to and I saw Ryan imitate him, sometimes even looking around or looking at me because he knew it was wrong. This kid was, again, laughing hysterically, so Ryan joined in on the fun. The teacher requested that they help the other kids clean up several times and they ignored her, so back to the office they went.
We got home, I let Ryan know that I was very sad and disappointed at the choice he made and got him involved in deciding his punishment. I also tacked on that he couldn’t have his blanket during naptime today, which is a huge deal to him. He’s had his blanket for every nap and bedtime his entire life…until today.
I’m hoping this will let him know how serious I am about this. I decided that on the way to school each day, I'm going to go over the rules and remind him of how he's expected to behave. He finally fell asleep without his blanket. I don't want to keep punishing him...I want this bad behavior to stop!!! Please post a comment if you have a suggestion for me. I'm really open!
Monday, December 17, 2007
Once outside, I had to take the car seat out of the car (feeding about a dozen birds with all of the Cheerios that came out with it!) and put it into the grocery cart to clean. With wipes. About 1/2 a box of wipes. Because I still needed to get Kaylin HOME in the car seat! It was crazy. And possibly one of the most disgusting experiences I've ever had. So I wanted to share the disgust with YOU. Thanks for listening!
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Mike and Ryan played redneck golf in the backyard before dinner.
I made two pies, my mom brought one and my three cousins brought cookies, chocolate Rice Krispie treats and Snickers ice cream bars for their desserts. (I should call the tradition"Dessert Night," but it just doesn't have the same ring to it)
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Monday, December 10, 2007
Here's a random picture of the kids playing in some DVR boxes the other day. Kaylin found one by the garbage can, crawled into it, closed the flaps and started saying, "Mommeeeee, are youuuuu?" Ryan jumped all over that, so I relocated them to the family room, where they played in the boxes, even ate their snacks in there, for an hour.
And here's a picture of Kaylin talking on a harmonica that she thinks is a phone. She's pointing outside and telling the person on the "phone" about the birds on the lawn. These kids crack me up. I couldn't stage some of these pictures if I tried! I just grab my camera before the moment is over.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
It's been said that when kids are precocious it's a sign of intelligence, which is all fine and good, but MAN it's tough getting questioned about every little thing I do all day. I feel like I'm constantly talking, answering questions: "Because I'm all done washing my hair," and "Because it's Christmas-time and I'm going to a Christmas party. I thought the present earrings would be fun to wear," and "Because we need to mix all of the ingredients together into the cookie dough so the cookies each taste the same instead of one having all of the butter and another having all of the sugar." It's truly exhausting thinking through the reasons for every...little...thing...
The other thing Ryan is into saying is, "What?" If I didn't just beg his pediatrician to give him a hearing test, I'd swear he was going deaf. I think there are times that he's not paying attention and others when he says it out of habit. You know what's worse? I noticed that Mike does it, too. So I have two boys in the house saying, "What?" after almost everything I say. Again, maddening.
Onto the other little talker, some new things Kaylin is saying:
- Over Thanksgiving weekend, she started putting two-word sentences together. Like, "my blanket" and "more banana" - of course it's HER words for these things, but she's saying 2 words none-the-less! She also says, "are you" for "where are you" when hiding or if someone leaves the room and she's looking for us. She's in her room right now calling, "Mom-meeeeeeeee, are youuuuuuuuuuu..."
- "Bob dead dew" is "God bless you" after sneezes
- She says, "Thank you" most of the time after getting something she wants
- She says, "I love you" (that's "I ya yooo") randomly throughout the day (the sweetest words I could hear!)
- O-day, sometimes shortened to "Day." It's cutest when I guess what she's saying and she agrees, but instead of saying, "Yes," she says, "Okay" or "'kay." She whispers it, by the way, which is hilarious. For example...
Kaylin: "bah-burrr, bah-burrr..."
Me: "Do you want to color?"
Most of the time I'm just asking to figure out what she's saying. I don't necessarily mean to tell her that she's going to get to color right then or have the snack she's asking for. Oh, that's another thing;
- Snack - she thinks a snack is a specific kind of a food. I ask if she wants a snack? "Otay!" Then I start offering suggestions. "Do you want an apple?" "No." "Do you want some raisins?" "No - sna." "How about some yogurt?" "Nooooo - snaaaaa!!" (increasingly getting herself more frustrated that I asked her if she wanted a snack, now I'm asking if she wants other things) Today, I've started saying, "Do you want an apple for a snack?" She gets the idea of breakfast and lunch being meals, not food, but this snack thing is throwing her for a loop.
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
- Only take advice from parents who have kids that turned out the way you hope yours will be
- I can drive, talk on the phone and hand Cheerios to hungry little people in the backseat all at the same time
- Sippy cups leak
- Glitter and sand are very, very messy
- I can handle a lot of kids shows, but the Wiggles and the Doodlebops drive me nuts
- The oldest child isn't always at fault
- The child who was caught isn't usually the one who started it
- If it's entertaining them, sometimes the mess is worth it
- Raisins, corn and kidney beans come out whole
- It won't hurt anyone if they play in the rain
- Kids have amazing memories
- Building confidence is critical
- Everyone in the family benefits from routines
- Sometimes correction is better received from others
- Kids are capable of more than we give them credit for
- They listen to more than we think
- Everything doesn't need to be done quickly
- Kids need space, too
- Letting kids "help" isn't always help for you, it's to help them learn, feel included and build confidence
- It's good to have daily, weekly and monthly traditions
- Sometimes it's easier for them to learn the lesson the hard way
Lessons I've learned in general...
- The days are long, but the years are short
- Sometimes it's better to keep your thoughts to yourself
- I can't stand the phrase, "You just wait..."
- I love feeling organized and productive
- Laundry left in the washer overnight in Phoenix smells sour by morning
- Don't judge others; you don't know their situation
- We all look back at pictures of ourselves wishing we "still looked that thin." And we'll look back in a few years at pictures of us today wishing the same thing
- Burned, overcooked cookies have the same calories as gooey, soft cookies fresh from the oven...eating the hard, crunchy cookies just isn't worth it
- Be intentional about making memories
- Slow down and enjoy the moments
- Things don't need to be perfect
- It's better to count to 5 before reacting
- If someone randomly pops into your head, take a moment to pray for them and give them a call when you get a chance
- Be purposeful
- Be a person of integrity
- Edify your family in front of others
- Pray daily, alone and as a family
- You'll be much less stressed if you just hand it all over to God...he's in control anyway!
Saturday, December 1, 2007
- We always decorate our tree the day after Thanksgiving and eat leftovers for dinner, but I just heard of a great idea to add to that tradition: inflate the air matress and grab the sleeping bags to go "Christmas Camping" and sleep around the tree the first night it's decorated. I can see that being something our kids look forward to every year.
- Another idea I got from a friend a few weeks ago was "Pie Night." Every year on the Saturday night before Thanksgiving, she hosts pie night. Everyone from both sides of the family is invited and they have pie and coffee while playing games. There's no big meal to plan around or clean up after and if they miss spending Thanksgiving with in laws or other family members, they still get to see everyone. I'm doing our first annual pie night in a couple of weeks and everyone seems to be looking forward to it. Somehow, my cousin and I got on opposite trading schedules for holidays with our in laws, so we hardly see each other this time of year. But we'll see each other for pie night!!!
- Last night, someone mentioned opening one gift on Christmas Eve. She said that she remembers the gift she's opened on Christmas Eve every year and sometimes it's the only gift she remembers, since there's so much going on for Christmas Day.
- One other great idea (for families who struggle with whether to "lie to your kids" about Santa) is "St. Nicholas Day" on December 6th. That's the day the real St. Nicholas died in 343AD and I have a friend who celebrates Santa up until that point, then puts away the stockings and celebrates the birth of Christ through December 25th. She sent me all of the details complete with the full story of St. Nicholas, so email me if you want that.
Of course, there's the chain links to count down the days until Christmas. I didn't have enough red and green construction paper, so I had him color typing paper with a red marker and other paper with green and cut it into strips. (A little ghetto, but it did the job and we're throwing the strips away each day anyway, right?)
Yesterday, Ryan asked if we could make a snowman for Daddy. It was raining like mad (I was in heaven) and it seemed he thought it might snow. Poor, snow-deprived kid! I got creative and made up a craft with mini-marshmallows, a toothpick and some chocolate sprinkles. We made our whole family; Me, Ryan, Kaylin and Daddy. Ryan was very specific about who was who.
Someone suggested this one to me a few months back, but I don't think I really get it. It's a reindeer...handprints for the antlers and a footprint for the face. Ryan's foot is so big that it looks more like a moose, but I'm not sure if I'm supposed to draw something on there to make it look more reindeer-like or what. Suggestions?