Thursday, October 27, 2011

Looking Good

I took the boys the eye doctor a few weeks ago to update their prescriptions, and it turned out the Jack needed new frames to replace his beloved red glasses. He picked out a pair in blue with a white stripe on the side - very stylish. Last week, they arrived, and he was ready to wear them to school for the first time.

I asked him what his classmates would do, since he wouldn't be wearing his trademark red glasses.

His reply, "Well, all the girls will probably pass out, because I look so good."

(Stunned silence from me.)

We never claimed to have any confidence issues in this house. Ahem.

And really, let's be honest - they do look that good... I think we'll be fighting the girls off with a stick very soon.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Dance Moves

The boys are excited about their uncle's upcoming-wedding. I told them there might some cute girls there for them to dance with.

Jack replied, "Yeah, I need to learn how to spin on my head real quick!"

Yes, Jack, that really impresses the girls...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Tonsil Drama

So the boys finally had their tonsils taken out - and adenoids - and tubes put in their ears. This was a surgery we had originally scheduled back in March, but we couldn't keep the boys healthy enough to actually make it to the surgery. So we rescheduled for the summer.

Part of the original draw for the boys was that they would be out of school for the recovery - so doing it during the summer didn't appeal to them much. But we talked them up with unlimited popsicles, ice cream, and new video games.

The morning of the surgery started very early - up at 5:30am for us parentals, then rolling the boys out of bed at 6:15am. We were glad it was early though. They boys couldn't eat or drink anything until after surgery, so this worked best for us.

We had a smooth check-in at the surgery center, and then the boys got prepped for the surgery.

After the surgery, the boys took awhile to wake up, and Nathan seemed worse off than Jack. They were not happy about the state they found themselves in. Not happy at all. Sigh. It's so hard as a mom to just know you can't do anything to help your babies feel better. You just have to help them through it as best you can. I did my best to comfort them over the next week but it was pretty rough.

There was lots of sleeping...

And lots of popsicles with Mythbusters or video games...

(This was one of the two times they actually had clothes on the whole week. They did wear underwear, but only grudgingly.)

And there was a lot of medicine.

The medicine was the cause of lots of drama. Jack took his mostly without complaint (except during the middle of the night) but Nathan was another story. He cried. And kicked. And whined. And complained. He did NOT want that medicine - no pain medicine, no ear drops, no antibiotic. None of it. I could hardly blame him. It was quite a relentless round-the-clock schedule of medicine, requiring me to keep track via a notebook and an intricate grid of timing and doses. But we had to do it.

By Day 5, Jack had had enough of Nathan's carrying-ons. I gave Jack his morning doses and then steadied myself to tackle Nathan's medicine. He was not happy at all, per usual. (Poor guy.) By the time I had finished up with Nathan and gotten him settled again, Jack had disappeared. I searched around for him and, on my way upstairs to check their bedroom, I found this note on steps.

Translation: "I'm sleeping because of Nathan! P.S. He annoys me when he cries."

Oh my heart - my poor Jack had definitely had enough of Nathan. These are two boys who very rarely fight, unless it's over a video game and whose turn it is. For Jack to be pushed to the edge far enough to find a piece of paper, a marker, and to scribble this out, he must have been far gone indeed. Poor sweet boy.

I found him on his bed, feigning sleep. We talked it through and decided to cut Nathan some slack, as he was feeling so bad and still seemed worse off than Jack was. But Jack was very clear that he just didn't know "why Nathan has to make such a fuss about it!"

So that was our week after surgery. Days 4 through 6 were the worst. By Day 8, they were on the upswing. By the following weekend, they were back up to normal.

It's crazy how the countdown to surgery had really been weighing on us. Now that it's over and the recovery is done, it's a huge weight lifted. I'm glad we are getting back to our regularly scheduled summer fun.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Girl Pressure

Yesterday, the boys and I took Daisy for a walk. It was probably the second time we had been out of the house for more than a week. The boys had their tonsils taken out last week and it's been rough. The boys have mostly recovered by the end of this week, but we're still taking it day-by-day.

As I walked Daisy (or rather, was dragged along by Daisy), the boys rode their scooters. They also wore their bike helmets. I'm a little over-protective, I know - but if you had a husband who's deaf in 1 ear because of a bike accident as a kid, you'd want your babies to wear helmets every day of their lives as well. Mostly, the boys don't mind wearing the helmets, but lately, they have been wanting to skip them when they ride their scooters. Today, however, after a LONG week inside the house, I didn't give in. I made them wear them.

As we walked/rode down the next block, a group of girls was outside playing in their driveway. The boys had been riding ahead and back again during our walk. However, when Nathan saw the girls playing, he rode back to me, and asked me - very loudly - "Mom, I don't know why you make me wear this helmet! I look like a dork in this helmet. I didn't want to wear this helmet. Why did you make me wear it, Mom?"

Basically, he wanted to be sure the little girls knew he would never, ever make the dorky decision to wear a helmet while riding a scooter. Jack just looked blankly at him, not having the wherewithal to be embarrassed about how he looks yet, apparently. And I cried a little inside, knowing that the days of growing up into pre-teens are quickly approaching. Sigh.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Growing Pains

Nathan loves to sit on my lap while we scroll through photos on my laptop. The problem is - he's too big. He got about 8 pounds and 1 inch on Jack right now, which is a huge difference when that's 20% of your body weight. I can barely lift him, let alone withstand the crushing weight of him trying to squeeze onto my lap in my office chair.

The other day, after doing this normal routine, I squeezed him up in a bear hug and fake-cried, telling him that he wasn't allowed to grow anymore. If he grew any bigger, he wasn't going to fit into our house, let alone on my lap. He looked at me very seriously and said, "Even if I don't fit on your lap, I'll always be your son."

Well, I certainly hope so. (Sob!)

Monday, June 06, 2011

Baseball Season

It's that time of year again - baseball season! The boys are doing coach-pitch baseball this year for the first time. And it's not easy. They are struggling a bit to make that transition from t-ball to pitched baseball. But they are getting better every time they practice.

Our first game was yesterday, and the boys were all geared up with the personalized baseball gear I made for them. They looked so cute! I love this shot of Nathan with his hat and Byron in the background.

The boys were each up to bat twice during the game. Nathan really worked hard at hitting the ball from the pitch but wasn't able to connect this time around. He was able to slug it out to center field from the tee, though. He just needs to get his timing down as he's just barely missing the pitch ball each time.

Jack was able to connect with the pitch ball on his first time up to bat. We were so proud to see it fly out to right field. The second time up, he wasn't able to connect but again, slugged it out to center field from the tee.

We need to get some good practice before our next game. We love baseball!

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Handsome Clothes

As I dropped the boys off at school this morning, we noticed that some of the kids were dressed in 50s-style clothes in honor of the 5th grade chorus concert tonight. My boys had no idea what 50s-style clothes were, and I told them that we didn't really have any (although if I had been a "with-it" mother, I could have dressed them in jeans and a white t-shirt and called it good, but I'm not altogether-together these days). They agreed; then Jack said, "Yeah, pretty much, we only have handsome clothes and cool clothes."

So true, darling - so true.

Friday, March 11, 2011

New School

The boys started their new school and seem to like it just fine. Not much phases first-grade boys, apparently. During the whole move process, I obsessed endlessly over how the boys would adjust to going to a new school. I did that a lot as a kid (I went to 5 different elementary schools between Kindergarten and 6th grade), and I remember being so sick to my stomach with worry about being the new kid. Would my boys feel that way too?

First day at new school

My worries were for nothing. They enjoy their new school and have met lots of new friends. The school has been very supportive of having the boys and has made the transition easy. The boys each have great teachers and aren't having any troubles being where they need to be in the lessons currently going on at the new school.

Even my worries about starting school 30 minutes earlier - and the entailing having-to-get-the-boys-up-30-minutes-earlier-routine has been a smooth transition. An interesting change I could never have predicted - no more TV in the morning. We don't have a TV in the main living area of our new house (kitchen/dining/living room) instead having opted to put our "big" TV (which is a laughable term, considering it's not big at all, but the biggest we have right now) in our family room downstairs. So when the boys have breakfast in the morning - at our new favorite place, the breakfast bar! - there's no TV, which means no Sponge Bob, no Clone Wars, no nothing. The boys get up, get dressed, eat breakfast, then go back upstairs to make their beds, brush teeth, put jammies away, and please, please remember to turn off the lights up there so Mommy doesn't have to walk up those stairs yet again to turn them off herself (who ordered a house with all these stairs anyway? Oh, that's right, I think it was me...).

The boys do play their Nintendo DSi's in between all these chores, but they are fairly cooperative about turning them off when it's time to leave. Most days, anyway.

The part that's been killing me - and I don't know if it's because we're at a new school or because they are just growing up (sob!) - but they refuse to let me kiss them at school any longer. When I drop them off at school, I have to kiss them in the car before they are seen by any other kids or settle for just (barely) a hug. Another sign that they are succumbing to the pressures of their peers - Nathan pulls off his hat and gloves the second he thinks he's out of my eyesight. This is truly hilarious, because, like every mother of every age, my eyesight extends much further than he can possibly imagine. Plus what will he do when his ears freeze off??!!

Walking in to school

My babies aren't my babies anymore...

Thursday, March 03, 2011

The Best of Us

Yesterday, the boys were playing outside with the neighborhood kids. The ground here is sloppy with mud and slush, and before I could get back out to see how they were doing, Nathan had run home with sopping wet jeans smeared with - fun! - dog poop. Awesome.

I got him a new pair of pants to change into, and he told me was sorry for getting covered in dog poop. I told him that was kind but totally unnecessary. Boys get dirty. Dog poop is a little extreme, but still. Then he said, "Yeah, it happens to the best of us."

I guess it does.


Wednesday, March 02, 2011

The Romantic Life

My babies are no longer my babies. I know this. And yet, I love to cuddle and snuggle them as much as they will allow. One night this week, when they both rebuffed my attempts at snuggling, I very loudly protested in a fake, wailing cry. Jack looked at me and, very un-ironically, told me, "Mom, stop being so romantic."

I think he meant dramatic. But then again, maybe he wants me to stop kissing him so much. Whatever.

I'm sure I don't need to dwell too much on their sense of humor, but as a good example, here are pancake "butts" they make at breakfast most mornings. It's supposed to look like a person bent get the idea...

Breakfast in our new kitchen

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Dating Already?

Nathan has this recent habit of always asking what time it is. I never have a watch on me, other than my phone, which is usually nowhere nearby. So I don't have a good answer for him in most cases. My usual response is, "Why? Do you have date?"

He gets extremely annoyed by this. He must have been thinking of up ways to get back at me - last night, after asking again what time it was, and me giving my usual response, he nearly knocked me to the floor by saying, "Yes, Mom, I have a date. I need you to take me to pick her up in 5 minutes."

Ugh...please no, I'm not ready.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Finally Moved!

We have finally - officially - irreversibly - moved to Nebraska. It's been a long, long journey, but we made it. Our move finally happened during the week of the great blizzard of 2011. Whoo-wee. What a time to move. Couldn't have been worse weather, really. The entire saga:
  1. Tuesday: The packing team arrived at our old house to pack everything. By the time they were done - mid-afternoon - the blizzard had set in with full force, and it was craziness. The boys had a snow day that day (and the next day was supposed to be their last day at their old school). Our dear neighbors had all the kids at their house to play that day, as our house was not much fun, what with all the TVs and video games packed up. So we picked up the boys after the packing team left, then drove to the hotel where we were supposed to be staying for a single night. That single night turned into three nights. The snow was insane! I've never seen anything like it. By early evening, the moving company had called to reschedule our loading from Wednesday to Thursday.

  2. Wednesday: By morning, there was at least 12 inches of snow on the ground. Another snow day for the schools. Turns out the boys wouldn't be going back to their old school. :( They were okay with it, but I was sad for them. The best part: Byron and I spent three hours shoveling the driveway and the sidewalks in preparation for the loading team to come to the house to pack us up. We got a call mid-morning that the movers wouldn't be able to be there until Friday. So we went back to the hotel to stay another night.

  3. Thursday: Even with the load being delayed, I knew the boys and I would have to go to Lincoln regardless. We had a carpet cleaning appt that afternoon at the new house, and the boys were supposed to start their new school the next day. So we left Byron to deal with the loading up of all our worldly possessions. Which is probably just as well, considering how freaked out I was just seeing all our stuff in boxes. The boys and I arrived in Lincoln and set up camp in our new house with air mattresses and suitcases.

  4. Friday: I had called the new school from the road the day before and told them the boys wouldn't be starting until Monday. I just couldn't deal with one more thing - I admit it, I was stretched to the absolute limit. So Friday was a pretty boring day (thankfully). I set up a makeshift office so I could get some work done, and the boys played video games for pretty much the entire day. I'm not apologizing. We did what we had to do.

    Camping out

    Luckily, the loading team arrived in KC that morning, loaded everything up, and Byron was able to get to Lincoln that night. We were finally all together, including Daisy, who rode up with Byron.

  5. Saturday: Bright and early, the moving truck arrived to deliver at our new house.

    Moving van arrives

    My dad took the boys to his apartment for the day. Byron and I had a weird day of standing around and watching people do a lot of work, directing traffic, and basically wondering how in the world all this stuff fit into our old tiny house. The crew was done by early afternoon, leaving Byron and I to wander around, not knowing where to start. We got the boys home and decided to call it a day.

And that's mostly it. All in all, we love our new house. So much more space than we had before, and we definitely needed more space. Now, for the really hard part - unpacking...

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


Byron had the boys in Lincoln this past weekend. It was supposed to be the weekend we were preparing to move to Nebraska, but with the close rescheduled to this week, I instead had a relaxing, quiet weekend all to myself. Very needed and very nice.

Byron called to check in and had Jack get on the phone to tell me about a sign he saw as they drove through town. Jack told me in great detail about this sign - a girl, standing up, from behind, a neon sign in two parts, of the girl's butt, and the two parts each lit up at alternating times. (Are you getting the picture yet?) Yes, it was a sign for one of those places. Remember the happy whore? Well, Byron couldn't exactly explain to Jack the sign's purpose.

As Jack told me about the sign and I tried desperately to keep from laughing, Jack told me in a very outraged voice (and a fair imitation of me, I think), "I have NO IDEA WHY in the world they would have a SIGN of a GIRL SHAKING HER BUTT in PUBLIC!!"

Oh my dear sweet boy, you will know, and all too soon...

Sweet boys

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Another Snow Day

The 4th snow day we've had so far this school year. I'm trying not to mourn the fact that today was supposed to be the day we closed on our new home in Lincoln - the close has been postponed until next week, so not all is lost. And with more than 6 inches of snow dumped on us, I should be grateful that I'm not having to drive across the Midwest in this weather. Instead, I'm home with the kiddos - the boys and our dear neighbor friend - warm and cozy.

That's a lot of snow

Well, mostly warm. I did spend 90 minutes shoveling our driveway and various side entrances. (Why does such a small house have so many doors anyway??) I may or may not have thrown out my back. There was no less than 34 feet of snow in our driveway, which I had never noticed before as being so very, very long and winding - almost palatial, really. As if leading down a long lane of magnolias. But doesn't. Not even close.

Our snowy driveway, freshly shoveled

The kids are being extremely wonderful and letting me get my work done - working at home has many advantages and snow days are 1 of them. However, I do actually have to work, so the kids are mostly left to their own devices, playing video games for way more than the daily recommended dose. (Does anyone actually follow that guideline?)

Pastime of choice

I would say that I'm excited to move out of this snowy wasteland except that, where I'm moving, there's even MORE snow. But at least there I have a spouse I can force to do the shoveling...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Measure of a Man

We're on our third snow day in a row here in Kansas City. The first day was actual snow, but yesterday and today are because of sub-zero temperatures. Do you think that might deter two 7-year-old boys who want to go sledding? Of course not.

Snow Day

So the three of us bundle up from head to toe in our winter gear - boots, hats, gloves, gators, snow pants, and even ski goggles. Seriously. I know I've said this before, but being a mom of boys has certainly forced me out of my girly comfort zone.

As we traversed the huge snow piles on the way to our sledding hill yesterday, the boys made a few fast daredevil runs down a short hill, crashing into the snow pile at the bottom and nearly crushing their little faces. As I squealed in fear, watching Nathan crash yet again, Jack told me very calmly, "Geesh Mom, we're men - we're tough."

I guess I'll have to just get over it...