Monday, February 28, 2011

No Pictures Momma!

Gwen is going through a phase where she does not want her picture taken at all. She loves to look at the pictures after they are taken on the handy little viewing screen, but rarely does she let me take her photo. In fact as I was taking pictures of Lucy and her new found fashion I kept pointing the camera at her and she would look at me and say 'NO pictures Momma!' pout her lip out, look at the floor, and run away from me. It is very difficult to get a great shot in those circumstances.

When I finished with Lucy and was showing off the pictures Gwen finally agreed to get her photo taken. Oh, and did you notice the marker all over her arms and face. Yeah, she decided to do that earlier today too. Apparently long sleeves are our friends in this house. Hopefully Gwen will snap out of this phase soon. I really want to get pictures with her and the new baby when he gets here!

Fashionista Lucy

Lucy has her own sense of fashion. It is kinda a strange sense of fashion but a sense it truly is. Lucy found this crawling leg warmer in her drawer this week. And she has worn it every time it has been clean and she sees it. (There was a potty accident last time it was on so it needed to get washed.)

The picture doesn't really do justice to the last time she wore the leg warmer. The previous outfit was with a purple dress with leggings. Of course the dress had flowers and butterflies on it. With the jeans and the shirt it almost looks normal. ALMOST!

Oh the teen years are going to be so much fun. I don't really care if she is quirky though in how she dresses. Somehow I think she is going to have the attitude to sustain the image.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Coloring Insanity!

Gwen has discovered a love of coloring. She is constantly scribbling on paper, coloring books, even the magnadoodles that we have. She particularly loves markers but in general any writing utensil will do. I don't remember Lucy being so much in love with coloring as being in love with writing all over her hands or arms or face. Gwen is very purposeful with the whole thing though and it is very cute to watch.

Lucy has FINALLY progressed past the coloring on her hands all the time. Now it is generally on the paper. Although she is not as big of a coloring fan as Gwen.

This is just a taste of what my entire house looks like. There are crayons and colored pencils and markers and coloring books all over the house. I would be irritated by it all if it weren't for the fact that it keeps Gwen occupied and she never seems to write on the walls. Although the markers I am tired of finding with no caps on, so I have put them up for the most part. Such a fun stage. Messy house but happy kids.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Baseball Fever

Both boys are signed up for some version of baseball this spring. Andrew for coach pitch and Zane for t-ball. We were short one mitt and managed to get a good deal on one today at the store. Zane was quite excited to go out and play catch, so out into the front yard the two big kids went. Almost the very first throw went into the street. Very wisely they both raced into the house to find out what to do. Eric told Andrew that he could cross the street to get the ball and then they needed to scoot closer to the house so it wouldn't happen as often. As both boys hurried out the door we heard Andrew say to Zane, "You stay here. If I get hit go get mom and dad." (Not that we weren't watching out the window the entire time) Fortunately Andrew made it to the ball and back without getting hit by a car but it was quite cute how responsible he was about the whole thing. The boys had a great time tossing the ball back and forth. Shockingly no one got mad or upset. Hopefully this is a good indication of things to come in the next few years!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sarcasm Speaks

Eric and I have a very unfortunate tendency toward sarcasm. Very unfortunate. And for those of you out there who also speak sarcasm fluently, you know how incredibly difficult it can be to turn it off once you have gotten the hang of it. Andrew has learned the art of sarcasm. And I must admit that hearing it come out of the mouth of my 7 year old causes very mixed emotions. On one hand, I am relieved. Because those who deal in the world of sarcasm tend to have a solid sense of humor. They see the irony in comments and situation and are able to process it. For my highly verbally sensitive boy this is a good thing. It means he isn't taking EVERYTHING literally. Which he kinda has a tendency to do. On the other hand, it is totally and completely unnerving to hear a sarcastic reply come out of his mouth when I ask him to do something. Because sarcasm is quite disrespectful at times. Ok, most of the time.

I was mentioning to my mom today that Andrew has learned sarcasm and she related the following story. Last weekend mom was watching the kids while Eric and I went out for a nice lunch date. They were all playing games and Zane was melting down and throwing a fit. After a few minutes Zane finally gave it up and stopped screeching. Silence filled the air. At that point Andrew looked at my mom and said, "Well that's a heavenly sound." Yeah. That type of talk.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Belly Update: 33 Weeks

It just keeps growing!

Ergo Jealousy

Baby #5 is causing me to re-think my crowd control strategies while out in public and doing group activities. Three babies 3 and under will make nap time in public a bit more challenging if we do decide to take everyone to the zoo or fair or some other all day type of activity. I have been looking for a nicely used Ergo baby carrier for awhile. I borrowed one from a friend a few years ago for a trip to the Mariner's game and it was wonderful.

Eric managed to get me one off Craigslist this week at a really good price. The girls seem to think that it belongs to them though. Gwen especially wants to be in it all the time. She just gets all snuggled up like a baby koala.

Lucy wanted in on the action too so Eric tried it out with her as well. Shockingly this carrier will hold kids up to 50 pounds. Although I can't even imagine trying to shove Zane in it. He is just over 50 and it would be completely ridiculous looking for sure! There may be some fights in our future over who gets to ride on mommy and daddy.


The boys got these cool magnet toys, called Magformers, for Christmas this year. They absolutely love them. I love that they are totally baby safe and keep the kids occupied for hours. Andrew is showing off the ROCKET SHIP that he built.

Friday, February 11, 2011


It feels like a long time since I have posted about the boys so I thought I should remedy that this afternoon! Andrew and Zane are buddies. Don't get me wrong, they fight like cats and dogs periodically but they for the most part are friends. I feel so blessed that the fighting they do is generally resolved without a lot of physical force. And by force I mean they don't punch or kick each other very often. I can tell that Zane really looks up to Andrew most of the time. And for the most part Andrew sets a really good example of what to do and not do. Their personalities are very different from each other but I suppose that is an ok thing. I always have wanted my kids to be friends and I really hope this carries through the teen years.

Part of the connection right now is Zane's interest in school. He is starting to get super excited about kindergarten and with that excitement comes nervousness about the changes and new experiences. Riding the bus, going to class, having recess, it is all new and thrilling to Zane but the reality is a bit scary too. And he is unsure in new situations. I am very thankful that Andrew will take him under his wing though and show him the ropes with all the activities. Andrew has already shown that he will do that with different activities at church. I expect school to be no different.

It will be fascinating to see how all this morphs when we have this new little brother. I can only imagine how much he is going to look up to Andrew and Zane when he is big enough to realize they are older and cooler. So much fun is laying ahead of us. I can hardly wait!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Little Fishies

The kids have been doing swimming lessons for the past few weeks and I just now managed to get the camera and the kids to the pool all at the same time! It is so fun to watch the kiddos progress and learn how to swim. And they think it is one of the most fun activities out there.

Lucy is a fish. Plain and simple. There has not been a nervous or timid bone in her body about getting into the water and going for it. She LOVES her goggles. And her teacher. And pretty much everything we can mention about swim lessons. I don't know that she is floating on her own yet but I see her progressing through the levels at a pretty decent clip.

Zane has made AMAZING progress since the last time he took lessons. I credit part of his success to his teacher Bridget. Bridget is the sister-in-law of a friend and someone we have seen at lessons in the past (her kids attended lessons the last time Zane took them). So I think simply recognizing her and knowing she is a mommy has made a world of difference with my Zane. He has been putting his face in the water and using his arms and legs to do the strokes. Major progress from the last time we did lessons where he goofed around most of the time. I am very interested to see how he does when the report cards come out on Thursday.

It has been a very long time since Andrew has had swimming lessons. I am guessing at least a year and since then he has graduated to the Beginner level class rather than the Preschool level. It is quite different having him in the older class. They are expecting him to do a lot more than the Preschool level did and he is thriving on it. The teacher has had them swim the length of the pool as well as back and forth across the deep end. Andrew is doing very well and has impressed me with how much he has retained from his lessons last year. The only thing he still needs to work on is his diving. He ends up with a pink belly more often than he would like. Those suckers hurt!

So where does Gwen fit in with all this? She is a happy observer on the sidelines. The first couple of lessons she tried to strip down when the rest of them did but recently she has been quite content to just sit and watch. Playing with the water on the pool deck is a big thrill too when she finds a second that I am not paying super close attention.

All in all swim lessons are good. I wish that I could do them with the kids all the time but it is a time drain and we have that pesky one activity at a time rule at our house and the boys wanted to play baseball. So. One more session this winter and we will hang it up for awhile longer. But it is nice to see them being so competent in the water!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

A Valentine Mailbox

Every year Andrew gets to make a container to house all of his valentines for his class party. Lat year they made the containers in class. This year he gets to make one and take it to school. He decided that the container needed to be a mailbox so today he started working on it. Fortunately Eric was willing to pitch in and help him make his dream come to life.

Andrew is such a crafty kind of kid. He loves to do projects and is quite good at them.

The mailbox isn't done yet but I can't wait to see what it will look like when it is completely finished!