Thursday, May 31, 2012

It's Kidney Day Everyone!

No, not World Kidney Day, but a very special day nonetheless.

14 years ago today is the day one of my best friends received his second life saving donor kidney. I first met Padrin in 2003 when we both worked for the same company. He invited me out to celebrate Kidney Day the first year I worked there and I've been inviting him and his kidney out to celebrate ever since. BTW, I named his kidney Squirtle that first year and it kind of stuck.

So wherever you find yourself today, give your kidneys a hug. Take them for a walk, treat them to a cranberry juice, make a donation to the Kidney Foundation or sign up to be an organ donor. And don't be shy! I know you're out there, so take a minute and drop Padrin and Squirtle your good wishes in comments. : )

Happy 14th Birthday little Squirtle!

- L.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Peace In The Valley

In the time it took to step out and fetch the jammies from the dryer and get night-time milk sippies ready, this happened:

And in case you prefer a more dramatic look, there was also this:

Pursuant to my previous post, the "peace in the valley" concept is sometimes a rather fleeting thing – and while I know I should be grateful for even the small moments I knew this one wasn't going to end well. If there's anything I've learned in the past 2 years, it's that you never ever wake a sleeping Nate. Unfortunately this time I didn't have much choice since I couldn't leave him laying on the floor all night.

Still, it was tempting for a brief moment at least.

Waking up my sleepy Nate went about as well as I thought it might (read: angry, loud and rife with square mouth). It got a little bit ugly over here temporarily, but in the end the bear and the wolf made their peace and the lion and the lamb once again laid down together.

- L.

The bear will be gentle and the wolf will be tame
And the lion shall lay down with the lamb, that's what he said
And the beast from the wild will be led by a little child*
And I will be changed from this creature that I am.

*Ha ha. No kidding! Little child beats beast from the wild any day. I can't believe someone even wrote this down.

Big Shoes To Fill

After a sweaty walk around our sweaty neighborhood today, I came back to our especially sweaty apartment and kicked my shoes off the second we all walked into the boys' room.

At which point, they were promptly commandeered:

And despite appearances, it wasn't by this one.

I took that picture well after the unexpected "Shoe Wars" broke out and had already been resolved. And by resolved I mean I hobbled away to procure another pair of shoes as fast as my weary feet could go. 

"Mommy's shoes... I steal them!"*
Which meant there was peace in the valley at last.** 

Also, this is what Nate does lately if I ask him to smile at the camera: 

I have no idea what that's about and I don't particularly care because it makes me giggle.

• • • • • • •

The post title is not intended to be a self-congratulatory pat on the back – rather an acknowledgment of the work that any of us as mothers (or fathers) do day in and day out.

Today was a tough day.

Still, the shoes thing was awesome and hilarious and I made a point of grabbing my camera when I stepped out to fetch the second pair because I had a feeling I was about to hit comedy gold. While we might have had a tough day, these are the moments I want to remember because they make all the tough parts worth it.

Times about a million.

And even though my shoes might be big ones to fill in a more literal sense, I think my boys sported them rather well, no?

- L. 

*Said before the infamous "Shoe Wars" broke out.

**In the very early days when the boys were barely hatched and I was busy juggling crying babies on sometimes as little as 45 minutes of sleep the refrain from Peace in the Valley was a reminder to me of the impermanence of whatever I was dealing with at the time. There were even times I sang it out loud. Of course, that was entirely before the strict "No singing!" policy was made clear.

Still, I found there were a few times today when I once again had this on a silent loop in my head:

There will be peace in the valley for me some day 
Peace in the valley for me, dear Lord, I pray 
There'll be no sadness, no sorrow, no trouble I see*** 
There'll be peace in the valley for me.

***Emphasis mine.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Like A Diaper In The Sky

Despite a fairly strict "No singing!" policy at the OP, there are a few songs I can occasionally get away with. Specifically, the traditional ABC/Alphabet song, "Baa Baa Black Sheep" and "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star". I'm sure it's no coincidence that they're all sung to the same tune – and maybe I even do an especially OK job with it. Who knows?

What I do know is that it's nice to occasionally get away with singing something from start to finish before the "No singing!" ban-hammer comes down. It's not easy feeling like a perpetual contestant on The Gong Show – especially when the results are rarely in my favor if you catch my drift.

For what it's worth, I often sang the complete medley to my boys when they were babies and I thought my singing was something comforting – you know, before they were able to articulate their feelings about singing in general and perhaps Mommy's singing in particular. I'd like to think that maybe the reason I can slip one by them when it comes to singing any variation of these songs now is because they did find some comfort in it. At the very least, it's familiar territory (for them) and also I can get away with it (mostly).

Sometimes you just have to go with whatever works.

My boys do not sing*, but they are excellent at reciting. They've known all the words to "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" for a long time now. They are also well acquainted with shapes, including complex ones like hexagon, pentagon and octagon, so trust me when I say that "diamond" is fairly basic stuff at this point and not something they'd confuse with say... a diaper.

Either way the following would still be hilarious:

Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are.
Up above the world so high,
Like a diaper in the sky.
Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are! 

However, if you're really trying to excel at comedy it's considered good form to chuck a clean diaper up in the air while singing reciting it. Best served on repeat mode in case you were wondering.

I realize I only added a "The Things They Say" label less than 48 hours ago, but I have a feeling it's about to get very popular.

- L.

*Mostly they do not sing due to their strict policies about the aforementioned, but Nate at least has maybe (maybe?) made a foray or two into something beyond reciting words. The jury is still out however.

PS. I may have unintentionally ruined "Baa Baa Black Sheep" forever by making my own attempt to improve the lyrics – and by "improve" I mean I've long since replaced "the little boy who lives down the lane" with "the little boy whose name just might be Seth... or Nate!". Cue either of my boys reciting the same with a whole new slew of add-ons:

Baa baa black sheep, have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir, three bags full!
One for the master, one for the dame,
And one for the little boy whose name just might be Seth... or Nate!

Or Mommy! Or Daddy! Or Grandma! Or Uncle Brent! Or Auntie Karen!
Or bananas! Or blue! Or fire engine! Or twenty-six! Or "all creatures great and small"!** Or...

Well, I'm sure you get the idea.

**And yes, they really did say all of those things and at least two dozen more before they ran out of steam.

"Fix The Nate!"

"Fix the Nate!" ended up taking the #1 spot on my list of favorites when it comes to the things my boys currently say. And by "ended up" I mean it was pretty much a landslide victory. There is absolutely no way that expression is going to disappear any time soon and truth be told, probably never. 

"Fix the Nate!" was borne one night not long after the cribs were transitioned into toddler beds and within a night or two after my boys decided sharing a bed was the way to go. It started with a bit of a skirmish over whose side of the bed was what now and ended up with a pile of toddlers in a mashed-up state on the same side of the bed.

At which point, Seth requested with a note of escalating alarm that I "Fix the Nate!".

And so I did. I "fixed the Nate" who at the time was more or less trying to sit on his brother's head – hence the alarm – and in hindsight was on the wrong side of the bed anyway*.

It all could have ended there that night and maybe wound up as a one-off post about something funny that was said once upon a time, except that the requests to "Fix the Nate!" keep rolling in – many of which were (and still are) from Nate himself.

Remember this photo? 

I originally captioned it "Mommy fix it!" which was legit since that was in fact something Nate actually said at the time. Not captioned (but equally legit) was Seth's missive to "Fix the Nate!" and Nate's own plea that followed "Mommy fix it!", which echoed his brother's sentiments:

"Fix the Nate!" 

- L.
• • • • • • • 

PS. "Fix the Seth!" has been known to show up here and there but it never seems to have the same enthusiasm behind it, nor has Seth ever put in a request for his own "fixing", in case you were wondering.

PPS. Also in case you were wondering, "Fix the Nate!" – at least for Nate – does sometimes mean Nate would like things fixed *for* "the Nate". You know, in case you were feeling badly that Nate is in perpetual need of "fixing". To the contrary, his own indications for "fixing" so far appear to be entirely self-serving.

• • • • • • • 

*It would appear that there is a right and wrong side of the bed when it comes to my boys since they started bedsharing. The only positions they will go to sleep in are left: Seth and right: Nate. This threw me for a loop the one night someone got sick in the preferred bed and I had to relocate everyone to the less preferred bed. I tucked Nate in against the back crib rail since I thought that was how things worked, but I was quickly corrected. Nate is only comfortable sleeping on the right side of Seth, while Seth is only comfortable sleeping on the left side of Nate.

And maybe it's all a crazy coincidence but that was also how they slept, navigated and played in the womb – heads together, Nate on the right and Seth on the left – and I'd almost buy the 50% odds of it being completely random if not for the fact that they're so incredibly insistent on it. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

The Things They Say: Top 5 Best & Worst

I recently added a new label called "the things they say", since none of the made-up conversations I've come up with over the past two years can even begin to hold a candle to the things my boys actually say these days. 

A couple of weeks ago I started a top 5 list of some of my favorites, as well as a top 5 list of some of my not-so-favorites. For some reason, the "Top 5 Worst" list came together more quickly than the "Top 5 Best", although I can say without a doubt that the #1 best saying of all time was the impetus for the list in the first place.

"Aloo shoes" and "I-dee-dee" are the relics of days gone by now. Ditto for "Leggy-bugs", "Chup-up", and "Pah-guts"*. The endless clamoring for "Reetins! Reetins! Reetins!" until we all thought we would lose our minds has long since been replaced by a simple request for raisins. Hum is now home.

And so it is now – for every ounce of posterity that's in it – I present my top picks for Best & Worst sayings that are currently in use:

The Worst:

By "worst", I mean the ones that drive me up a wall mainly due to the frequency with which they are used. Repetition might be a toddler's best friend, but I can tell you it's often a crazy-maker for Mommy. 

#5. "No singing!" 

– "No singing!" first appeared on the scene last winter anytime I would, you know, sing. It gave me a bit of a complex to be honest. I mean, while I wouldn't win any contests, I don't think my singing is that bad. I can carry a tune (at least most of the time), but I'll admit I felt heaps better when my boys started declaring "no singing!" around others as well.

Of course, at some point I recalled all the times I would sing them to sleep as babies when they were too young to object. Now I wonder if they only pretended to be asleep so I'd quit it with the singing already.

#4. "Piece of fuzz!" 

– "Piece of fuzz!" applies to actual pieces of fuzz, but also includes random things like clothing tags, loose threads and finely chopped food items/spices. Much like the dirt on the cheese crackers, my boys are semi-convinced I occasionally put fuzz in their food. Oy.

Originally, pieces of fuzz were met with a reaction similar to how one might react at the discovery of a spider on oneself – or at least how I would react to that particular discovery (read: general hysteria). Now they are simply pointed at while the discover-ee says "Piece of fuzz! Piece of fuzz! Piece of fuzz, Mommy!" on a loop until the offending fuzz has been removed.

#3. "Uh-oh! Va-va go!"

– Although my boys are well capable of saying "water" and will refer to bath water as "water" for example, water in their sippy cups has always been known as "va-va". And when said water in sippies is accidentally dropped (or more likely deliberately flung) the logical thing to say of course is, "Uh-oh! Va-va go!".

Unfortunately, things that "go" doesn't end at va-va – it's just the most popular and the original source of the "things that go" trend. Seth especially gets pretty worked up over things that "go". You can (sort of) see him in action here, but the hour was late and instead of doing his usual running litany he kept it simple for once with "Uh-oh! Stuff go!".

#2. "Kiss a bonk!" & "Itchy nose!"

"Kiss a bonk!" predates "Itchy nose!", but they are used to the same end – and although they can (and have been) used separately, these days you are more likely to hear them in succession, a la "Itchy nose and bonk!".

Very rarely do either have anything to do with an actual bonk or an itchy nose ("itchy" is how my boys refer to a runny nose in case you were wondering what that's about). On the contrary, "itchy nose and bonk" comes into play mostly in the following scenarios:

Brother steals your toy? Itchy nose and bonk!
Mommy says no more cookies? Itchy nose and bonk!
Time for bed? Itchy nose and bonk!

I'm sure you get the idea, and really it's sort of cute/funny the first 50 odd times you hear it in a day and grab a real tissue to wipe at an imaginary itchy nose while bestowing a kiss on an equally fake "bonk". After that though? Maybe not so much.

"Kiss a bonk" is pretty established at this point and typically a kiss on the top of the head gets the job done. That said, it's not completely out of the ordinary for those bonks to appear elsewhere. Some of my favorites have included, "Kiss the shirt!", "Kiss the sock!" and most famously, "Kiss the behind!".

#1. "I think so!"

Such an innocent sounding phrase, but it's place at the top of my least favorite sayings list is well-earned.

Every day without fail my boys pick a word du jour that is used to mean "general pandemonium time now!". Today's word was "washing machine" as an example – and it was trotted out liberally for such fun times as toy throwing, food flinging and making a rather spirited mess with sippy cups. Of course, all of the scenarios included the requisite shouting of "washing machine" – or worse, "MORE washing machine!" – followed by fits of giggles at Mommy losing her marbles and being forced to say ridiculous things like, "No more washing machine! I mean it!".

Tomorrow they will move on to a new word, and trust me when I say it won't matter in the least what that word is because by the end of the day I can guarantee it will be the most irksome word I've ever heard.

Except for "I think so!".

"I think so!" gets top billing since it was the first phrase my boys used to let me know it was, in fact, "general pandemonium time now" and they terrorized me with that particular saying for a solid week. In fact, "No more I think so's!" is still something the boys say – pretty much around about the time it's clear Mommy is about to lose it completely.

Want to see me twitch? Drop an "I think so!" into casual conversation. Fun!

• • • • • • • 

The Best: 

#5: "Oh my goodness boodness!" 

This is mostly a Nate-ism, but I've heard Seth use it too. It's used appropriately to express surprise. I have no idea what the boodness is about, but you can't have an "Oh my goodness!" without the "boodness" around here. Super-adorable, whatever it means.

#4. "It's a mystery!"

This one is mostly a Seth-ism, but Nate is certainly no stranger to the magical powers of "it's a mystery!".

"It's a mystery!" more or less translates to "I don't know" and often comes into play following an "Uh-oh! *Something* go!" incident when I'm not able to locate whatever it is that "went". Often my boys will steer me in the right direction when it comes to missing toys for example – and usually they aren't so much missing as hidden in some semi-unreachable place. Other times? Well, "it's a mystery!".

"It's a mystery" is always preceded by a thoughtful pause – the cuteness of which has a lot to do with it's magical properties. Keep in mind it diffuses even the worst of the "Uh-oh! *Something* go!" shenanigans in an instant. It also comes in handy in the following scenario:

Me: "Hey! How did water get all over the floor?"
N/S: *pause*... "It's a mystery!"

Clearly there isn't too much that's mysterious about that situation other than maybe which one of my boys was the perp, but I find myself cleaning up messes without question and having a bit of a giggle when they play the "mystery" card. See? Magical properties!

#3. "That's a machine, alright!" 

I covered this one over here. It's still very much a popular phrase and it still hasn't stopped making me laugh.

#2. "Nate and Seth are best friends!"

I'm sure I don't need to write a single word to tell you why this is on my list of favorites, other than to say my boys really are best friends and I love so much that they are. 

They are each Felix to the other's Oscar. 

• • • • • • • 

You're probably wondering how "Nate and Seth are best friends!" only made the #2 spot. I wrestled with it a little myself, but here's the thing: while Nate and Seth are best friends and I hope they always will be, there's probably a limited shelf life on them actually expressing that in so many words. At some point it will simply become an understood thing.

And much like the "Reetins!" of yore, all of these expressions that either make me laugh or want to tear my hair out will go by the wayside also. "It's a mystery" is probably not going to seem as cute when the boys are teenagers and I'm pretty sure they won't be asking me to wipe their noses or "kiss a bonk" anymore by that point either.

I can however, guarantee that the #1 spot on my favorites list will still be haunting at least one of my boys through his college years and beyond.

It's that good.

And since it's that good, I've decided it deserves a post all it's own.

Until next time then.

- L.

*Aloo shoes = blue shoes. I-dee-dee = ice cream. Leggy-bugs = ladybugs. Chup-up = Ketchup. Pah-guts** = Patty-cakes.

**I originally thought "Pah-guts!" was twin-speak for something to do with bedtime/saying goodnight, to the point I started saying "Goodnight... and pah-guts!" because it seemed suitable. It wasn't until we were reading Mother Goose one day and Nate pointed at the "Patty Cake" page and exclaimed "Pah-guts!" that the "mystery" was solved. That incident certainly gave me pause when it came to being definitive about declaring "Anasahnize!" and "Fore-stains!" as real examples of OP cryptophasia, but rest assured, the fore-stains et al are legit.

• • • • • • •

PS. Last October between the big Hallowe'en photo-shoot (courtesy of my dear friend Padrin) and the bath-time splish-splash pics, "Uncle P" took some random candid shots of me and my sweet boys just hanging out. They certainly weren't intended to be masterpieces, but they are without a doubt some of my favorite photos of my sons and I together. I've been hoarding them, but this seemed like an appropriate post to finally share since they are also very much some of my favorite things.

Working on my drum technique.

Excelling at my tickle technique.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

When The Moon Hits Your Eye Like Your First BBQ...

...that's amore!

We brought our new toddler-friendly table and chairs out to the deck for the occasion. On the menu: BBQ chicken, caesar salad and garlic bread, followed by apple crisp and ice cream for dessert. Discerning toddler critic rating: 5 star dining establishment. 

– Oh hi everyone. Is me, Seth. We sitting outside to eat for first time at new chairs and table. 

– Is first BBQ also which not detail to leave out! "Barbeque" is fun word to say until actual BBQ show up. Then I stop talking because I is busy stuffing face with yummy chicken. Seth get busy doing fake-out with garlic bread, but I thinks you can tell I definitely savoring the flavors here. Maybe I grow up to be food critic someday. 

– I realizing for first time that we is unfettered at table while we is also outside. There is world of possibility out there if it weren't for that meddling Mommy who insist we sit at table while I reluctantly pluck at BBQ. 

– Meanwhile, I is thinking 'dis flavors like Mama used to make back in old Napoli*. Mwah! 

– Still, 'dis maybe good time to say, "have you seen my hair lately everyone?" while I show off the back. Is filling in nicely I think. Gamma Rita not know it yet, but Mommy say this going to be the summer of hippy hair love. Is going to get all kinds of out of control over here. 

– Er... what he said. Also lemon water is nice touch everyone.**

- L.

*Despite a very mixed heritage, "old Napoli" is not on our personal map and so I hope my comment is not offensive. Still, I think the only thing missing from our first outdoor dining experience was the music

**Lemon water was for the adults, but a good incentive for getting the boys to drink out of something other than a sippy cup. Nate especially loved it. Note to self: buy more lemons ASAP.

PS. Seth isn't joking around. The summer of the-letting-it-all-hang-out-hairstyle? It's on, everyone!

PPS. Filed under "funny things toddler say": a chorus of "more limits!" after a passing comment I made to the other adults present about my boys testing limits lately.

• • • • • • •

Dear Nate and Seth: Careful what you ask for my sons – much like a fine dessert, more limits can certainly be arranged if that's your preference. Don't tempt me.

Semi-seriously yours,

– Mommy

Saturday, May 19, 2012

My Ham-Fisted Hooligans (At Least They Show Well)

Six odd weeks or so ago, the boys and I had an opportunity for a brunch-time meet-up with our prenatal class alumni. It's the first time we'd seen (almost) everyone together in over a year and we had a great time (also, no camera malfunctions this time around!). It was amazing how much more time we – as parents – had to interact with each other at our recent get-together. Apparently a lot can happen in a year.

Of course, it helped that my guys had no issue whatsoever getting familiar with all the different books and toys. For example, Nate was just as comfortable reading upside down at someone else's house as he is at home:

Ditto for Seth, who got down to business "organizing" as many toys as he could find onto our hosts' coffee table: 

... before he commandeered his own private "boat" for story-time that is: 

Of course, there was at least one thing out of the ordinary and it's not the toddler-friendly table and chairs: 

Before I managed to fully articulate the phrase "oh, my boys don't know how to use a fork", Nate had said fork in hand and was using it like a pro. In hindsight, I think perhaps he was trying to impress the young lady. 

And yet, methinks the young lady was not especially impressed.

None of which mattered much at the time, of course, because Mommy was sure impressed! I couldn't wait to get home and dig our dusty forks out of hibernation for yet another stab at things (lousy pun intended).

Unfortunately, back again in our home environment with an absence of other people to consider, all bets were off. My attempt to reintroduce utensils resulted in tears and fork-flinging and then an epic bout of sadness until the forks finally disappeared. Suffice it to say, it didn't go well – at all. 

I put the forks away once more to gather dust and quietly feared my boys would still be eating their meals like ham-fisted hooligans come college. 

• • • • • • •

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago. I have no idea what possessed me to drag the forks out of hiding that particular day, but I suspect I was feeling unusually well rested and up for a challenge. And you know, it went over pretty well!

No flinging: 

No tears:

And even though Nate and Seth were blatantly goofing off at this point, definitely no sadness:

And so it is at last – ham-fisted hooligans though my boys may be – we sometimes use utensils now at the OP.


- L.

PS. Since even the pics at the end are a few weeks old at this point, the black eye Seth is sporting is the same one featured here

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Raise Your Hand

Really. Raise your hand if you didn't see this coming: 

Admittedly, I think there was a greater possibility of the sun not rising this morning so I'm 100% confident that zero hands were raised.

Less predictable though? Nate upping the ante at dinner tonight. I didn't bother taking pictures other than this one: 

And even though you can probably tell exactly what's going on here, it's still worth a peek at the new video on our YouTube™ channel featuring this evening's antics. When I say Nate upped the ante, I really mean it.


- L.

Monday, May 14, 2012

The New Thing*

Well, it looks like this is the new thing then: 

Including the inevitable ending: 

And yes, once again, I did "fix it".

Honestly, I'm not sure whether I'm more amused at Nate's hijinks or Seth's reactions to Nate's hijinks. Other than the getting stuck part, it's high comedy all around.

– L.

*Psst to Nate: I think your brother already covered this one.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Yarrr! Happy Mother's Day!

Pre-flower-picking in the afternoon.
No pics from this morning since we had a lot to get done and everyone slept in to boot (Mommy's Day score btw!), but we did have a follow-up conversation pursuant to my previous post... 

• • • • • • • 

Me: Do you remember what day it is today?

S: Is special occasion.

N: Special occasion today!

Me: Wow. That's some big words. I can't believe you both remembered "special occasion". Do you remember what the special occasion is?

S: Is Saturday!

Me: Hmmm... well, no. It's actually Sunday today, but that's a good guess. What do you think Nate? Do you remember why it's a special occasion today?

N: Is Blue Day!

Me: Blue Day? Hmmm... I don't know what that is, but it sounds fun. It's actually Mommy's Day today. Do you remember Mommy's Day?

S: ...

N: ...

S: Avast me hearties!

N: ... and a bottle of rum!

S: Yo-ho-ho!

N: Yarrr!

And end scene.

• • • • • • • 

Highlights from today:

Between breakfast and lunch we made art. Specifically, we recreated a previous art project on actual watercolor paper since I was so impressed with the boys' Jackson Pollock stylings I decided I wanted some to frame. I did one as well this time.

The pic doesn't do our efforts justice since they look much nicer in person and less like crime scene spatter analysis photos. Definitely frameable and we had lots of fun making art. Left to right: Nate, Mommy and Seth.

After lunch, my guys surprised me with an unexpected nap instead of quiet times. They slept for a good 90 minutes and it probably would have been longer, but I finally decided it was time to go in and make a little noise. 

Nate was not quite as ready as Seth to wake up, but we got going eventually. Also, I am loving Seth's sweaty bed head look.

By the time we got out the door this afternoon the local market was sold out of cut flowers, but we still had fun browsing the gardening section. At least until the boys got a little hands-on and starting picking flowers. Oops!

I didn't want us to leave empty handed, so we picked up a little cactus that we all agreed looked interesting and headed home where I promptly put the boys to work in the dandelion ridden backyard.

OK, not really. The truth is they love picking dandelions and if you've been around our place then you know that the backyard is rife with weeds. My guys had a grand time gathering a bouquet for Mommy.

Long-stem dandelions no less. Fancy!

As fun as that was, I think I can safely say the cupcakes and ice cream for dessert were the highlight of the day's festivities. Well, as far as Nate and Seth were concerned anyway: 

Om. Nom. Nom. Nom.

Dessert was yummy, the art was fun and the flower picking was a sweet time. I had a wonderful Mommy's Day.

Still, that surprise nap out of the blue (hmmm... blue day?) that gave a weary me a nice break in the middle of the day? Well, that made a wonderful Mommy's Day fairly magical – and by that I mean actual magic was probably involved if my boys were in a mood to take a nap. I try not to question these things for the most part lest it break the spell.

- L.

PS. There was a chorus of "Mommy's Day!" and "Happy Mommy's Day!" coming from the boys' room while I was preparing dinner tonight. I thought about grabbing the camera, but much like questioning the gift of an unexpected nap I didn't want to break the spell here either, and so I kept on with the food prep and just enjoyed the moment.

PPS. I'm pretty sure I was asking for the pirate chat since I taught them that one. Not sure how or why it appeared today since it was a one time thing that happened well over a month ago, but there it was. Yarrr!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Not Uncle Brent Day

As I was tucking my boys in tonight – after the usual cuddles and goodnight kisses and requests for water and "more stories" – the following conversation took place...

• • • • • • •

Me: Alright you two, it's sleepytime. And you want to make sure you get a good rest tonight – tomorrow is Mommy's Day!

N: Mommy's Day...

S: ... is tomorrow!

N: Not Daddy's Day!

Me: No, not Daddy's Day. That's not until next month.

S: Not Grandma's Day!

Me: Er... no. Not Grandma's Day either. I'm not sure when that is actually.

N: Not Boys' Day!

Me: Ha ha. Well, every day is Boys' Day.

S: Not Uncle Brent Day!

N: *giggle* Not Uncle Brent Day!

• • • • • • •

I knew it was game over at the first giggle, since it always is. The next 15 minutes were filled with non-stop declarations of "not Uncle Brent Day!" and fits of giggles until my guys wore themselves out and fell asleep.

And much like a "not no" in the absence of yes, I have a feeling I'm going to have to interpret a whole lot of "not Uncle Brent Day!" interspersed with much giggling tomorrow as a "Happy Mommy's Day!" from my best guys.


- L.

Friday, May 11, 2012

In Case It Looks Like We Live At The Kitchen Table...

We don't – even though it feels that way most days. What can I say? Mealtimes at the OP are lengthy affairs.

I could say it's due to the volumes of food my boys inhale during the course of any given meal since that would be at least partly true – my boys are growing and have the appetites to show for it. Heaven knows our hour long plus mealtimes are certainly not because they eat particularly slowly.


This right here though:

This is the real reason and in case you need a hint, I'll tell you that it starts with "shen" and ends with "anigans". That look Seth is giving speaks volumes.

And so it was on. 


Today's "breakfast special" also included some very creative clothing rearranging: 

In case you couldn't tell, Nate was pretty pleased with himself. Well, at least until the novelty wore off.

"Mommy fix it!"

Don't worry, I did. : ) 

- L.

*Fore-stains is a recent addition to our cryptophasia catalog at the OP. To be honest, I'm still trying to suss out the nuances but at this point I do know that touching their heads together in a mind-meld fashion constitutes "Fore-stains!" without question. Other examples include something that looks like they're trying to suffocate each other with pillows and mashing one's face into someone else's hand.

In an act of silliness last week while changing the boys' bedding, I balanced a balled up sheet on top of my head expecting a laugh. Instead Nate declared, "Mommy doing fore-stains!" and Seth agreed ("Mommy is doing fore-stains!"). They seemed pretty excited about it actually.

So other than fore-stains obviously having something to do with one's head, the rest is a bit of a mystery – to me at least – but it's quite clear whatever it means, it makes perfect sense to my boys

- L.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Long Distance Love Affair

Every time Gamma Rita comes to visit, I always threaten to cover her in babies and so far I've always made good on that threat. It's easy to do since my boys are happy to oblige. I took these pics during my mom's visit last Christmas, complete with a full coating of cuddly toddlers:

That's a pile of babies, alright!
• • • • • • •

Last week while in the throes of putting together a little box to post to my mom (AKA Gamma Rita) for Mother's Day, I came across a craft idea to send a "long-distance hug" to someone far away. It was not only exceptionally timely, but also cute and it looked like manageable fun to execute with a pair of 2 year old toddlers.

As a craft, it involved a little more Mommy participation than some of our previous efforts since there was much trimming and gluing and the measuring of ribbons, etc. – but it was completely worth a little extra effort to send a long distance hug from the boys to their Gamma. Look at those pictures from last January and tell me you wouldn't do the same.

Unfortunately things didn't turn out exactly as I'd hoped.

Oh sure, the craft itself turned out great: 

However, when all was said and done – and while my boys were being quite animated about a visit to the "POST OFFICE!" to send their handiwork off to Gamma Rita – they let me know that what we were actually shipping were not long distance hugs at all.

Now I'm quite certain I did the craft properly and followed the instructions to a tee, but in the end what we ended up sending turned out to be long-distance high-fives instead.

Four of them in fact.

Sorry about that, Gamma Rita. Hope you are up for some high-fives in lieu of hugs. The (real) hugs are waiting for you on your next visit where I will once again toss a pile of babies on you.

As always.

Happy (early) Mother's Day!

- L.