Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Childhood...

I often catch these two reading together. Sometimes it's on Bennett's bed. Other times it's curled up on Cannon's bean bag. Cannon brings a pile of books and Bennett reads through the few words that he knows or can sound out and he makes up the rest. Cannon doesn't care. He just likes books.

This is real-life. Late morning photo. Nutella is smeared across Bennett's face from his pancake breakfast. Cannon is still in his Chewbaca pajamas. (Chances are he remained in those pajamas until after his afternoon nap). I enjoyed watching them read together until they started to act silly and one of them hit the other and then reading books wasn't fun anymore and they both went they're separate directions.

Childhood is too short.
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Monday, April 25, 2016

Happy Birthday...

I've yet to meet a kid as excited for a birthday as this boy. He started counting down almost four months ago. We've heard for months what he wants - and his list changes daily. He's talked about his birthday lunch over and over again. There is no way the actual day of his birthday will live up to the hype he's created for so long.

Tonight he was angry for one reason or another and when we told him it was time to go to bed he exclaimed that he wouldn't sleep. He might go to his room, but he was going to be defiant and refuse sleep. I told him if he doesn't go to sleep he won't turn five. He has to sleep in order for tomorrow to come. He bought it hook, line and sinker and begrudgingly marched up the stairs. These are typical conversations for him!

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Here's a couple things about Mr. B:
He's a strong willed child and it's exhausting at times.

He talks about things over and over and over again - we often have to tell him we're not going to talk about it anymore.

He's funny. He's got a great sense of humor and he has an animated face to go with it.

He loves to ride his bike.

He is very protective of his alone time with Steve or myself. If you ask him to go with you to get pizza, he wants it to be just him, no other kids. And he can never get enough of that special time.

He plays really well with Cannon. He includes him on the puzzles, cars, pirates - one minute they're best friends and the next they're hitting and screaming at each other!

He's a kid who likes routine. If it's noon - he wants to know why he's not eating lunch. If it's Friday night he's expecting pizza and a movie - rarely is he okay with any substitutions.

He's very friendly. He makes friends wherever he goes.

He's an early riser. We've had to work hard at training him to stay in his room until it's an acceptable hour to get up.

He wants to be a fireman when he grows up.

He brings an energy to our family that is unrivaled. The trick is trying to keep up with him!

Happy birthday buddy!
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Sunday, April 24, 2016

Block Party 2016...

We had our neighborhood block party last weekend which happened to be on the windiest days we've seen in quite a while, it was warm enough but windy. It makes for a difficult party when your plate of food blows off the table and lands in your neighbors lap! With the high winds and a new baby, we didn't stay long, much to our older kids dismay.

In the time we were there, the older kids enjoyed the rock wall, Bennett stayed close to the bounce house with his friends, Cannon played with the lifesize jenga blocks and Hallie showed off her dance skills with friends. Even with the wind, it was a party that couldn't be missed! We love this neighborhood and all the special people that make it great.
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Thursday, April 21, 2016

Weekend grind...and farewell toys...

There is a light at the end of this rather long and very dark tunnel we call the front yard project. This morning we had 13 tons of rock delivered for the planting beds. Three large piles that my kids are dying to play in.
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The only problem with having 13 tons delivered is we have to shovel and relocate 13 tons or rock. My shoulders are sore just thinking of what lies ahead of us on Saturday. We do have some neighbors who are just as antsy to get this project done and they've volunteered to come help us. Evidently the neighborhood is tired of seeing us every Saturday out in our dirt patch!

Hallie came home from school and saw the piles of rock - she came to me confused.
H: What are those piles for?
Me: They're to put in flower beds around all the plants.
H: The same flower beds we've been pulling rocks from every weekend.
Me: Yes
H: Then why did you make us pull them all out.
Me: Because I like to watch you work.
H: Sooo not cool!

She's going to kill me when I ask her to pull more river rock out of the grass area!!

Speaking of killing me - I'm prepping myself for a colossal meltdown tomorrow morning when the kids go into the playroom and they realize all of their toys are gone. All of them, except the books. The room was a disaster. Every couple days, I'd make them clean it up and organize the toys and all I heard was whining and complaining. "But I didn't get those toys out. This is going to take forever."

Yesterday I asked an unnamed child to clean up the mess. As defiant as could be, their reply, "No". That is definitely not a word I want to hear come out of any mouth when I ask them to do something. I'm pretty sure steam was coming out of my head. Instead of lashing out, I quietly left the room to regroup and control my anger. I wanted to march right back in there and rip out every toy in front of them. But I didn't.

After a long and rational cooling period, I decided removing the toys for a while would be a good lesson. This evening I told Steve of my plan. He gave the child one more chance and asked them to clean the room and he got the response, "Ninjas don't clean."

Well child of mine - little ninjas may not clean and now little ninjas don't have toys.
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The kids went to bed and I went in with large totes and filled them up and removed them. It wasn't a sophisticated process - there was definitely no organizing going on. Just removing.

Still not sure if or when they'll get them back. And lets be real, it's not as if every toy in the house has been removed - just the ones in the playroom. My kids are going to love me - removing all their toys and making them pick up rocks!
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