Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Pretend Cookies

After Matt got home last night Harrison was filling him in on our day.
"Harrison," I prompted him, "tell him about making cookies." (The pre-sliced sugar cookies with pictures on them, Lightening McQueen in this case.)
"Yeah Dad, we made some cookies, but they weren't real, they were just pretend."
"Real cookies need butter and flour in the mixer...oh and real cookies have chwokat!"
Made this momma proud that my little man not only recognizes but also appreciates the made from scratch, warm from the oven treats we bake together:)
Linking up to Paper Mama and You Capture

Monday, August 27, 2012

Draining

It's a well established fact that Jefferson has a very active big brother.
For the most part, he does a pretty good job of keeping up with him and trying to act like a three year old himself.
Jefferson bypassed baby toys and baby foods and went straight for the matchbox cars and chicken nuggets.
So it's no wonder that after all the chasing after, fighting over, jumping on, and wrestling with big brother...
...the little brother can't stay awake through lunch.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Gift of Sarcasm

Harrison was trying out different animal noises in many different volumes...most of which were loud and louder.
"MOOOOO!!!! MOOOOO!!! MOOOOO!!!" Trying to break the incessant noise I asked, "Are you mooing like a cow?"
With sarcasm oozing Harrison looked at me and said, "No Mom, I'm mooing like a bird."
The kid has personality in spades, and now a sarcastic wit. I just can't figure where in the world he got that from ;)

Monday, August 20, 2012

How Boys Learn

I don't know if I've got this right, and I'm certainly no expert, but boys are pretty different from girls...in a lot of ways.
So if boys play different, eat different, and pee different, then I'm pretty sure they learn different too.
I'm guessing I could read a book to the boys all day long about how to hammer and drill, but it would never sink in, not completely.
But when their hands grasp the hammer and they strain to tighten screws then their confidence grows in their knowledge on that subject.
Not that they are expert carpenters yet, but they have the experience to be able to say what it feels like to pound a nail or stroke a paint brush and that builds a confidence that sitting at a desk could never do.
I think boys like the surprise learning hidden in nailing 4 nails in, then pulling out three, how many are left? (Math). Or making up rhymes as we swipe the paint (English).
So you won't find a lot of traditional pre-school around here. We've got a man-school going on where you'll find these guys with a screwdriver in one hand and their crayons in the other as we cover basic concepts.
I've got a feeling school for us will continue to evolve over the years as their interests and personalities do as well. But I'm pretty sure it will always include hands on, hands in, and maybe a toolbox :)

Saturday, August 18, 2012

To Be A Boy

One of the best things in the world is to be is a boy...
it requires no experience...
but needs some practice to be a good one. - Charles Dudley Warner

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Reasoning

Harrison is getting smart, too smart. He's got his Daddy's lawyer genes and he is learning how to use them!
We reward certain things with "special treats" aka candy. Harrison would like special treats for every good deed so I explained that if he got a treat all the time it wouldn't be "special" anymore.
Well, Mr. Attorney filed that away because last night I called him in for his bath. "Mom," he politely began, "You know, if I get baths every night, they won't be special anymore."

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Fair Enough

To help with our beloved Virginia State Fair withdraw, we celebrated our second annual country fair night and learned a few lessons.
1.) Rides are far overpriced for their lack of bells and whistles and safety standards...but kids love them none the less and it never got old to hear Harrison's excitement for each go-around-a-circle-a-few-times one.
2.) Sometimes height restrictions work out in a parent's favor...because frankly there are some rides I've got self imposed bravado restrictions.
3.) Kids grow way too fast and one day he won't care about the "Nemo ride". So soak up every minute of his childhood joy.
4.) They strategically place fair food tents right where you are waiting for your amusement riding child effectively making your mouth water a little more until you cave and buy something deep friend or sugar dipped.  
5.) Keep your eyes open...it pays off...literally. We found a wad of cash with no nearby takers. More go-in-a-circle rides!
6.) With all the loud music, lights, attractions, and noise no one seemed to mind or even notice the boys' antics...they were free to be loud and crazy themselves.
7.) Kettle corn, frozen lemonade, corn dogs, and ice cream are much better when shared, said my boys never. We are working on this concept...boys don't part with food very well.
8.) Smiling through cutouts seems like such a fun photo-op, but I'm just wondering how long it will take them to realize they are willingly posing as barn animals and blossoms respectively.
9.) It's ok to miss and want the tradition of our Virginia State Fair, but it sure was fun to have the adventurous friends we do to get covered in dust, smell like grease, and stand ready with purell as our kids touched a million animals.  It was worth every laugh, crowded line, deep fried bite, and incessant circle ride :)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

He Loved It, He Loved It Not

Mom, I want to ride the caterpillar roller coaster. It will be so fun, I know it!
Are you sure Harrison? It's a very big boy ride. Yes, I am sure!
And so he marched to stand in line not looking back.
He stood clutching his ride tickets watching the other kids ride ahead of him as I watched his face for any second thoughts.
The other boys provided their own support for Harrison-the-brave as he marched up the platform.

And then I saw it, the second guess, as my little boy turned and looked at me with intense uncertainty as the ride lurched forward.
Not even completing it's first pass around, Harrison was having none of it yelling to me, "This is NOT FUN!"
He bravely held on to his composure and the handle bar until the ride came to a complete stop and you better believe I was there to scoop up my shaking little man.
Harrison came out his tight grasp around my neck to declare, "That I was so fun! Except for the up and down part, I love roller coasters!"

Friday, August 10, 2012

Caught

Jefferson may not be as big, strong, or as loud as Harrison, but he sure makes up for it in quickness and craftiness. He's gotten into rock salt, lettuce, make-up, DVD's, and wallets before I've even had the chance to process he's not where he was 30 seconds before.
And then when you catch him, that little stinker doesn't shriek or run or guiltily pout. Nope, he gives a full toothy grin and says "Hi!" And he completely disarms you. Kinda nervous to see how this plays out in teenage Jeff :)

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Partners in Crime

I'm sitting here with paint speckled fingers, my living room smells like primer, and somewhere in the bottom of the trashcan are a handful of markers.
Let me fill you in on the week we've had around here and then you won't feel so bad about the discarded art supplies.
My boys are no angels. but I don't think I would want that anyway. Their energy, passion, and adventurous attitudes keep me thrilled to be discovering right along with them.
Lately they have even started playing, exploring, and creating together. Which is why I didn't go check on them every few seconds the other morning.
Which is why I kept on working on my recipes and weekly dinner menu hearing their happy voices getting along peacefully. Until Jeff crawled in the kitchen...covered head to toe in blue and green.
Harrison matched him limb for limb on color scheme, so did the beige carpet and the 3 ft art mural on my living room wall and window.
For all wondering, Mr. Clean erasers do not work on cheap, flat, wall paint. Cheap, flat wall paint does not cover blue and green markers. Oil based primer does which is why the room smells and my fingers are speckled white.
I think I handled it ok. I did what any mom in her right mind does. I took a picture and put it on Facebook then herded my blue-limbed bandits to the bath and their markers met their end in the bottom of the trash. We'll only be using crayons, on a drop cloth, out in an open field for now on. I kid...maybe:)
Linking to PaperMama

Monday, August 6, 2012

Lions and Tigers and Dinosaurs

One of the best things we did when we moved here was getting zoo memberships.
We go so much that the animals probably recognize us now.
We've been in the searing heat, the pouring rain, the freezing cold, and when all is right outside.
We go to get energy out, get a change of scenery, soak up some sunshine or rain, depending on the day.
It's nice to be in a place where my wild and crazy boys don't stand out too much since life in general feels like a zoo.
 
But lately we haven't been to gawk at elephants or see baby leopards. We've been over and over to see the dinosaurs.
Both boys cannot get enough of the roaring, moving monsters and both have way too much bravado in the face of the reptiles.
Kinda glad these big guys are extinct seeing my boys would be all about hunting down some dinosaurs.
Animatronics are more my level of thrill seeking for pre-schoolers and they seem more than happy with that...for the time being :)
Linking up with Paper Mama