Thursday, July 31, 2008

A Veritable Menagerie

The kids got pets.

Okay, they're only goldfish, but still.... This is a big-time animal commitment, for me.

Let's just say it: I am notnotnot a pet person. (Sorry, Sammi.) I've tried a few times. It never ends well. Dogs stink and are stupid-friendly. Cats are enormously presumptuous. (No, I do not want you on my lap. Or rubbing on my leg. Or walking on my counter with the same feet that walk in your toilet. But thanks for asking.) Oh, and their claws are a serious problem. And they all just need so much.... Walks, food, love, attention. I just don't have it to give right now.

Somehow I seem to have missed the pet gene. My sister has a golden doodle. He's huge. (Nice dog, but still a dog.) My brother is in the process of acquiring a Great Dane. One word: yikes.

Dad, being the farmboy he is, has always insisted that animals are just fine. As long as they're outside. I couldn't agree more. Mom is kind of a Crazy Cat Lady. Maybe that's where my brother and sister get it....

Goldfish are the best I can do.

Jensen brought his home from his summer school class yesterday (it's about ocean life). I thought he would pop. He was over the moon about his pet. And, because I'm a sucker, I went and bought Evan a 26-cent goldfish, too. Jensen's is named Charles. Evan's is named Blacktail. (Betcha can't guess what color its tail is.)

On two separate occasions yesterday I found the boys actually hugging the fishbowl.

I'm just glad Jensen isn't taking a summer school course on horses.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Hot snot

I don't know... if you look really carefully, can you see the snot glaze on Evan's upper lip?

I don't think I ever appreciated how icky summer colds are. They're definitely worse than winter colds.

Because little boys run around and get hot and sweaty. Sweaty little boys smell like puppy dogs. (Do little girls ever smell like puppies? I have no way of knowing.) And dirt adheres to the sweat. Throw in a friendly virus, and the attendant mucous attracts lots of additional under-the-nose dirt.

So my sweet little baby turns into a puppy-dog-smelling, crusty, grimy, snotty, dirt-moustachioed mess.

I love you, Evan. And I hope you feel better soon.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Bitten. Again.

So I mentioned on Saturday that Caleb was getting another tooth.

I was wrong.

He's getting three.

His poor top gum looks like he's been chewing on barbed wired. (Which he probably would right about now, come to think of it. Poor baby's chewing on everything that doesn't run away from him.)

You remember when I said that I cried when Jensen got his first tooth? It took a few of Caleb's teeth to bring me to tears, but I'm feeling that way again. He's growing up. I love it, but it still makes me a little wistful now and then.

I know more this time around, Caleb being my third, and that knowledge is a mixed blessing. For instance, I know that his fussiness will be over soon enough. I know that he will, most likely, not break anyone's skin with his new dentition. I know that the sleepless nights are short-lived, and that we will survive... that in a few years, or maybe in a few short months, I won't remember how tired I am or how frazzled I feel. Which is good.

But... this is where it gets a little tricky....

I also won't remember a lot of other things. Maybe I'll forget his cute little squeals of delight when I get him after his nap. Or maybe the yummy smell of his skin, or how addictively soft he is. Perhaps I'll lose the memory of how hard he has to work to move just a few feet across the floor. Or maybe how he just gazes into my eyes when he's tired.

No need to make a long list of what I adore about right now. My point is that I take all of these things for granted, because they just are. They are integral parts of every moment of every day. But before long they will be the invisible foundation of our mtutally-forgotten past. I know this, because it's already happened to me twice now. Memory is slippery.

I don't really keep baby books. My kids get teeth, they walk, they talk....The way I know that all of these things happened is by looking at the boys, at them just being themselves. Sure, I scrapbook, I jot notes on the calendar from time to time... but mostly, the product of these times will be the people my children grow into. The details will not matter.

But sometimes. Sometimes it strikes me how fleeting all of this is.

So I'm going to take a good long look at this photo. The days of the goofy, toothless grin are quickly coming to an end. How much do you think I will remember?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Nothing runs like a...

We got a new house. Great big new yard, which will someday (hopefully) boast a decent growth of grass. It's pretty pathetic right now. Seeding a new yard... well, it's a process.

But we're hoping for great things. So we got a lawn tractor.

I love this thing. Jeff and I argue about who gets to mow. The kids think we've moved wayyy up in the world. All this over a lawn mower. Suburban agriculture at its finest.

I felt a little guilty about it... is this the height of conspicuous consumption? Wastefulness? Sloth?

Pretty much.

To be completely fair, our yard is too large to manage with a push-mower. We figured that if we put it on some kind of rotation, we'd have to mow an hour every day to keep it mowed. No way. And I did bravely head out there with our push-mower a few weeks ago. Our neighbor felt so sorry for me that he brought his rider over and mowed our yard. Too embarrassing.

And our house came equipped with a dedicated "John Deere room." (Yes, it's really called that.) It's basically a garage stall in the basement. With "John Deere doors" (yes, they're really called that), so you can drive the cute mini-tractor in and out. How could we not get a Deere???

So now we have a tractor with a beverage holder, and Jeff cleans it off carefully after each use, and the kids feel really cool when they get to ride on it.

Someday we'll have grass that deserves such treatment.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Seasonal confusion... Happy Easter!

Quiet day today. It's so blazin' hot outside that we're all just trying to stay in the air-conditioned house. We're kind of on auto-pilot.

Evan, as always, is keeping us guessing, though. He's been singing some kind of jazzed-up version of "Here Comes Peter Cottontail" all day long. Nonstop. Pleased as punch with his rendition of the song.

At one point he asked if I was going to make him stop singing it. Well, no... but he evidently is aware of how annoying it is....

Anyway, springtime seems about as far away as possible. For everybody except Evan. So Happy Easter, little one!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Week in Review, 7.26.08

I like this title: Week in Review. Makes me sound like a fatuous news magazine. Here was the week:

  • Mystery solved: Caleb is getting another tooth (top left incisor, if you care). Which is why he's getting up so often at night. Which is the cause of my sleep diatribe earlier this week.
  • Willie: Jeff and I went to see Willie Nelson in concert. It was so beautiful it made me cry, and you can say whatever you want about me being a redneck or anything else. His music is amazing. And culturally significant, too: when we left I felt like I'd seen Elvis. Only better.

  • Good news/bad news: we took the minivan in to the doctor. It's okay, unfortunately. I was hoping it was something terminal, because I want a new vehicle (maybe something newfangled with-- gasp!-- remote door locks). On the upside, though, this brush with automobile mortality has made Jeff consider the possibility of replacing his POS car. Net gain. (Ask me about his alleged car sometime.)

  • Aquarian: Jensen started a two-week summer school course about ocean life. He likes it. It also means I have to have him across town before 8am every morning. Not as easy as it sounds.

  • The 'Rents: Mom and Dad visited last weekend. They made me happy. 'Nuff said.

  • Preschool-bound: Got all of Evan's preschool stuff finalized. He starts August 25. For four mornings a week, it's just going to be Caleb and me. {sigh}

  • Sniff: We all got colds. Jeff started it.

  • Mobility Project 2008: For those of you keeping track, Caleb crawled. Hands and knees. Last night. It's all over here, folks.

  • Less is more: Please note the Obama button in the sidebar.

Yeah, that's pretty much my week. Did you have this much fun?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ciao, guys!

Today is the day Uncle Greg and Aunt Julia move away. So I thought I'd do a quick tribute to them.

We've only lived in the same town for about three months now. So it's not like living apart is new territory or anything. Plus, they're only moving a couple of hours away. But still....

They're fantastic people. Good People, to give them a title. Generous, kind, energetic, helpful, fun. I could go on. Greg is Jensen's personal human jungle gym. And Julia has gained the reputation of being the World's Best Lego Builder (this is no small feat in our house). Evan calls them "Gag and Jaws," which I think is very funny. (It's his version of "Greg and Juls.") Caleb's little face lights up whenever he sees either of them. In short, the kids adore them. And so do we.

It's been awesome to live just a few minutes away from them. So much fun to have them drop by just because. Or to see what they're doing for lunch. Or just to call and see what's up.

But. Greg just finished his PhD and GOT A JOB! Kind of important, having a job and all. So they're moving to a great new house today, where he will begin his Very Grown-Up Job, and where-- the best of all-- they will prepare for the birth of their first child. (My kids are finally getting some cousins, but that's a post for another day.) Julia will be able to be a stay-at-home mom... in short, they are preparing for great things.

So, we know we'll see you guys often and that you will be very happy. We can't wait to see your new house and to meet the little one in a few months. But we'll still miss you. You have been invaluable help as we've settled in here. You are an awesome aunt and uncle, and a great brother, and the best in-laws I could ever ask for. We are lucky to have you, in town or a short drive away.

Good luck, Gag and Jaws! We love you and will miss you!!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Culinary adventures

This seems like a good enough place to work in this photo that Jeff took a couple of months ago.

Yesterday, in a moment of candor, Evan said, "Mommy, at our old house I ate a little fly. But it didn't taste spicy."

Oh. Guess I never thought of flies as being spicy, but okay.

Fortunately, Evan did not feel tempted to taste this moth. Too big perhaps?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Dream on

Isn't he precious? Watching my babies sleep makes my heart melt. They're all sweetness, eyelashes, and baby's breath.

Then I recover from my overly sentimental mommy moment and I get ferociously jealous. I'm so deprived of sleep that I get crazy-envious when I watch my own kids in a restful slumber. It's like a reflex or something.

I should tell you about me and sleep. It is my favorite. It is delicious. I cannot overstate my fondness for sleeping. And I seem to need a lot of it: an ideal night's sleep is about nine hours for me.

As if.
At this point, I feel lucky to get four hours uninterrupted. I feel positively indulgent if I get five.

The other day, in a particularly self-pitying moment, I figured it's been about a year and four months since I got an uninterrupted night's sleep. That's a little conservative. It has very literally been (at least) that long since I've gotten, say, six straight hours of sleep. (In case you aren't aware, it is physically impossible to sleep all night long during pregnancy, especially late pregnancy.)

Cruel, cruel world.

Okay, the obvious reason I don't sleep well is the baby. But he's a fair sleeper. (Believe me, the others were worse.) There's my husband, who is an inveterate snorer (god, when did we get this old???). And the fact that he gets up before five every morning, frequently waking me up in the process. And the big kids. They're good sleepers now, but our move kind of shook them up and made them a little more prone to awakening at night. And the storms. Seems we moved to our new home during the local monsoon season. I just want to sleep. Please?...
It's starting to show. I feel old. My brain feels numb. I have a frontal lobe of jello. Many times I struggle to complete a thought, simple math problems confound me, and rational thought is very nearly impossible. I am forgetful beyond compare. This is "mommy brain." In case you wonder if that's a real phenomenon, I challenge you to set your alarm for every three hours during the night for the next six months, and see how you feel at the end. (No naps allowed.) I've had to accept that people are going to think I'm dim-witted, emotionally unglued, and a complete airhead. It hurts my pride a bit, but it's pretty much the truth right now.
I know it will get better. I just have to try not to endanger anyone until then.

So sleep on, sweet babies. I promise I won't hold it against you. At least not for very long.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Safety first... or not

Some days are just dangerous.

Yesterday, for instance.

Both of these boys went to bed with big ol' goose-eggs on their noggins.

Jensen's was a pedestrian-versus-car door injury. We were in a busy parking lot, I was strapping the baby into the stroller and trying to keep an eye on everyone. Reached up to shut the tailgate of the minivan (shockingly, I drive a minivan). And I actually thought, "Maybe I should yell 'Clear!'" Then I thought, "That's not really necessary." Then I heard the sickening thud. Yes, I hit his head with the tailgate. He was trying to dash into the rear of the van at the same time I decided to close it. It was one of those things that happened before either of us could stop what we were doing.... I'm just glad we were at the doctor's office when it happened. And I'm not feeling quite as enormously guilty this morning as I did last night.

Last night Evan was meandering around the sidewalk. I glanced once and he was just doing whatever it is he does. I glanced again and he was picking himself up off the curb and crying, with a pretty blue bump on his head.

They're both okay today.

I'm thinking maybe helmets should become standard, everyday attire, though.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Just add sugar

Two pieces of information that are important to this story:

1) Aunt Ali visited last week. She's the best aunt who ever aunted. And she maybe has just the slightest tendency to get the kids just a little excited.

2) While taking Ali back to the airport to go home, we stopped at DQ. The kids got slushes, and sucked down a good portion of them pretty quickly. (Brain freeze? They laugh in the face of brain freeze.)

And then Evan had to go to the bathroom.

For those of you who have never taken a three-year-old boy to a public restroom, let me explain: it's simultaneously amusing and terrifying. When the three-year-old is Evan, these feelings are more extreme. (Evan is the kid who never walks anywhere: he trots, he prances, he jumps, he skips, he runs, he tries to fly... you know the kid I'm talking about. He has a very interesting reality, and it makes even the most mundane things kind of exciting.)

Anyway, Evan was hopped up on sugar and Aunt Ali. Note the crazed look in the photo. By the end of the bathroom trip, I was clutching my sides with laughter while wondering how to ship him to the CDC for a total-body decon. (Do they do that? They should consider it.)

I'll spare you the gory details that only mothers of little boys want to consider. Suffice it to say that within 45 seconds, that kid touched every square inch of the bathroom that was within his little reach. I must have said "no" ("NO!") 73 times. The automatic toilets and paper towel dispensers are sources of endless awe to him. The automatic blow dryer detonated while he was twirling around in front of it, nearly giving him a heart attack. He opened the stall door before I was fully covered. He sat on the floor. He tried to do a handstand. He nearly crawled into the sink for a bath while washing his hands. I can't even remember the rest. I think I've blocked it.

I'm just feeling lucky that it was a relatively clean restaurant and that neither of us has come down with a communicable disease (yet).

Ali, we love you. You rock. And next time you buy Evan a slush, you get to take him to the bathroom.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Seatbelt... check

Not much to say today. Mom and Dad visited... we hadn't seen them since Mother's Day, which is nearly an eternity in our family. (Maybe we should start timing our visits in dog years.) Here's one notable item: Caleb took off across the room today. This morning he was going a few feet. This afternoon he spotted an electrical cord across the room. I don't know, of course, exactly what was going through his baby mind, but I suspect it was something like, "Must. Have. It." Off he went with his best arm-over-arm army crawl, and nearly had that cord of death in his mouth before I intercepted him. So, if I don't post regularly from here out, just know it's because I'm busy saving a seven-month old from himself.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Week in Review 7.19.08

Here's a good feature: a periodic summary post. It'll keep the grandparents up-to-date on the little things that don't necessarily warrant an entire post. I feel like I'm really going out on a limb of self-exposure here. Because once you read this, I'll never again be able to pretend that I have a glamorous life. The question is, can your fake smiles look as insane as the boys' do in this photo???

This was our week:

  • My sister visited. She arrived on Sunday, left on Wednesday. As always, it made us both wish that we could live together. Because our husbands think this is weird, we are completely willing to compromise and just live next door to each other. Her visit was definitely the high point of the week for everyone.

  • Caleb had his first sippy cup. Mostly he just chewed on it, but he did manage to drink a little. He also ate some new stuff, including mango. It was a very scrumptious mango, so I think it was generous of me to share with him. Oh, and he slept for eight hours two nights in a row. This is good news.

  • Jensen got a haircut (because of his curly hair, he looks a bit like an adorable freshly-shorn lamb). He also spent a lot of time playing with the neighbor's nephew, who visited this week. He and I watched "The Spiderwick Chronicles" last night, which he has declared is "the best movie ever."

  • Evan didn't get up to much this week. I trimmed his nails, but this hardly counts as news.

  • I saved the best for last: Jeff also got a haircut. Unprompted. Very unusual behavior. Hair maintenance is low on his list of priorities (putting it mildly), and because he has this crazy curly hair, he frequently bears strong resemblence to Kramer or Lyle Lovett. Strong work, Jeffrey!!!

I'll stop now. Oh, don't you worry, there's lots more exciting stuff that happened, like bathing and grocery shopping. I'd just hate to get you too riled up with thrilling reports from Chez Us. Check in again soon-- the fun never ends!

Friday, July 18, 2008

On teeth and maternal emotion

We are in a period of great dental instability. Evan's the only kid who isn't in some sort of tooth transition. Jensen has actually lost another tooth since we took this (very blurry) picture, which means he has an enormous no-tooth gap where his front teeth used to be. It's pretty cute and goofy. This is his Summer of No Teeth.

Jensen hates losing teeth. If he had any say in the matter, I don't think any more would come out. (Although maybe he'd be more willing to part with them if the Tooth Fairy weren't such a tight-wad.) The Sunday before Mother's Day, he had a tooth that was so loose that it was hanging sideways in his mouth, blowing in the breeze, sticking out between his lips when he closed his mouth. And there was no way he was letting anybody near it. He ran screaming from us if we asked to see it. It literally fell out on the floor, with absolutely no effort, that afternoon. That's how loose it was. The same thing happened with the next one. I don't know if he currently has any loose teeth, because he won't let me near his mouth to check.

Here's the embarrassing part: I cried when Jensen lost his first tooth. I also cried when he got his first tooth as a baby. I'm not dysfunctional, just kind of sentimental. Yes, I do think about things like how losing his baby teeth is just a very graphic demonstration that he's growing away from me.... Then I get over it. I'm fully aware that this seems ridiculous. You can laugh if you want. I do.

Maybe I'm getting better, though. I didn't cry when Caleb got his first two little teeth a couple of months ago (and they are, by the way, sharp as knives). We'll see how I do when Evan starts losing his teeth. I'll be prepared. And something else will probably catch me off-guard. Who knows what?...

Thursday, July 17, 2008

We are fluorescent!

Another pool pic, this one of all the boys. You may have noticed that my entire family is alarmingly pale. This is due to the enormous amount of sunscreen my adorable husband pours on everyone before we even look outside.... When we're all together, the amount of light we reflect might actually cause retinal damage to onlookers. No risk of tan, much less burn, here. (Or skin cancer, hopefully.) We don't actually own stock in Coppertone. But maybe we should....

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

What UV rays?

Doncha wish you looked this good at the pool? Love the scuba suit. He was actually also wearing a ridiculous sun hat, but we didn't get a good photo of that. Trust me, though, he was very hip. And well-protected from the sun.

This was Caleb's first trip to the pool, one day last week. So (after we got him dressed from head-to-toe and slathered the few remaining square inches in about a gallon of sunscreen), we put him in the water. He loved it. Loved, loved, loved it. Let's face it: bathtime is awesome, and this was like a tub on growth hormones. The minute he saw the pool he started kicking and yelling and just wanted to get in the water.

Have you seen the videos of that strange, amphibious baby-swimming reflex? Where they just throw naked babies into the water and, by some miracle, the kids start swimming? I guess Caleb still has this reflex. I didn't throw him into the water or anything, but did hold him on his tummy. And almost immediately, he started to swim. Arms and legs were perfectly coordinated, and he kept sticking his little face under water. Who knew? And at this rate, he may well turn out to be the best swimmer in our family.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A lot of oxygen

Here we are: all five of us. And, yeah, we're sitting on a dinosaur.

(Evan's going through a hard-core dinosaur stage. So we "surprised" him with a trip to some sort of dino-rific exhibit at a zoo, with robotic life-sized dinosaurs that moved and roared and one of them even spit water. Yeah... Evan was completely terrified and refused to even look at most of the exhibit. Turns out he thought they were real. I forgot to think like a three-year-old when we decided to do that.)

Anyway, back to our family of five....

In the hospital after Caleb was born, my mom took a few photos of our entire new family. When I first looked at those pics, I was completely overwhelmed by how very many of us there were.... I think the first thing I said was, "Wow, we use a lot of oxygen now."

But I always wanted three kids. Invariably people ask me if we were "going for" a girl. Nope. Just three kids....

So now we have three. It's kind of controlled chaos. Except sometimes not so controlled. I'm exhausted every night. I'm not sure that's going to get better anytime soon. But, man, is it fun.

And you know the funny thing? (I can't even joke about this around my husband, because it nearly kills him dead.) I honestly think I could have more. We won't, because he's done (and done), and I feel a little old to keep having babies. So three kids it is. Just about perfect, high oxygen consumption and all....

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Dude, your hat's too big

Because this one makes me laugh, and sometimes that's all you have to say.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Q&A with a Baby

And now, we interview Caleb. Okay, so he can't talk. It's really not too hard to figure out how he feels about a lot of things. And we just made up the answers to the rest of the questions. Oh, the games we play as parents....

What's your favorite food? Milk.

Okay, what's your favorite solid food? Bananas. Love the bananas.

What's your least favorite solid food? Rice cereal, no question about it. That stuff is disgusting. And you know what's really cruel? When Mom mashes up some banana and I think I'm going to get something really awesome to eat, and then she contaminates it with that rice cereal garbage.

Most recent new food? Mashed peas. They're okay.

What's your favorite toy? The one that's closest to me.

What do you think of learning to crawl? It's really, really hard. And I'm going to get rug-burn on my knees.

What do you want to be when you grow up? A biped.

Tell me about your hair. My hair is blond and fine and pretty short, but I'm getting damn tired of everybody telling me I'm bald.

Play saucer or jumper seat? Play saucer.

How's the teething going? It's a little rough.

Favorite thing to wear? Nothing. A naked baby is a happy baby.

What's it like to have two big brothers? Mostly terrifying.

Favorite activity? Bath time. It's awesome. And I get to be naked.

Favorite song? Hmmm.... I don't know. But I'm sick to death of "Mary Had a Little Lamb."

Obama or McCain? Mom.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Q&A, next up....

So. Interviewing Evan was a little harder. It required a little more finesse. Which totally makes sense if you know Evan.

What's your favorite food? Hot dogs.

What's your favorite color? Pink.

What's your favorite animal? Triceratops. Tell me why they're special. I don't know. They have big teeth.

Favorite game? I don't know. Poker.

Best breakfast food? Blueberry pancakes.

Favorite vegetable? Kiwi.

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood? 'Bout a thousand! (He didn't miss a beat here.)

Favorite article of clothing? My sleepers. And my turtlenecks but you won't let me wear them at this house. That's because it's summer and it's hot outside, Evan. Oh.

Favorite toy? My purple elephant. The stuffed animal with the squeaker in it? Yeah.

What do you think you'll be when you grow up? Oh, I don't know. Just a daddy, all right? (He got a little irritated at this question.)

What's special about our family? I don't know. Nothing.

Who's the stinkiest? I am. (That would not have been my answer, but it's not my interview.)

The loudest? Me and Jensen.

The tallest? Mommy.

The shortest? Me.

What does Daddy do when he goes to work? I don't know. Eat breakfast?

What's your favorite movie? "Cars."

Favorite tv show? "Bob the Builder."

Boxers or briefs? I don't know anything 'bout that.

Favorite song? The Bad Day Song. (You know, the one by Daniel Powter or whatever his name is.)

Hey Evan. What? Who's on first? I am!!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Q&A, 7-year old style

What better way to catch up with the kids than to let them speak for themselves? I sat down with Jensen last night and threw some questions his way. My questions and comments are in italics. His responses are in plain type.

What's your favorite food? That's easy. Foot-long hot dogs.

So what's the best new food you've tried recently? Strata with asparagus and boursin cheese. Can you make that again tonight? (Yes, he really said that.)

Favorite color? Gray.

Favorite article of clothing? My Iowa Hawkeyes t-shirt. (Perhaps not coincidentally, this was what he was wearing at the time.)

What's the coolest animal? Cheetah.

What's your favorite sport? That's a tough one... I'd have to say tennis. (?!)

So who's your favorite athlete? It's a fight between Tom Brady and LaDainian Tomlinson. Because LT was the NFL's leading rusher in 2007. (And this is how we know he is genetically related to Grandpa Gayle.)

Favorite game? Chess.

How do you feel about your hair? Not so fond of it, with other kids. Unless they're my friends or they have curly hair, too. Then I like it.

Favorite song? Soldier Boy. (Never heard it; guess as responsible parents we need to check this out.)

Favorite movie? Star Wars. Episode 3, I think. Whichever one has the Jawas in it.

Movies seen recently? Wall-E, and Swiss Family Robinson.

Books read recently? Fudge-A-Mania, which Dad is reading to us and it's hilarious. And I'm reading Captain Underpants. Again.

Favorite toy? Legos. What do you like to build with them? Guys with guns.

Favorite subject in school? That's easy: reading.

What do you think you'll be when you grow up? I don't really know, but I think I'll be a professional athlete. Maybe a runner. I'm pretty fast.

Obama or McCain? Obama.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Gross motor skills, or, Look at me!

He walks! He talks!...

Okay, not quite, but Caleb does sit. Like a champ!!!

He's seven months and two days old today. A month ago he was just starting to sit in the "tripod" position (with his hands on the floor between his legs for stability), but very unreliably and only for a few seconds at a time. One week ago he was sitting unsupported for several seconds at a time, arms flapping wildly for balance. Then he'd fold in half forward (that made him mad!) or topple over to the side. And now he's wayyyy cool... I can just plop him down and he'll sit for a long, long time. He can even reach over and grab toys and... yes, sit back up.

And a few days ago he became kind of mobile. I don't understand the mechanics of it, but he was scooty-scooting a little bit. Two days ago he started launching himself backwards a few inches (also made him a bit angry, since he seemed to want to go forward). And yesterday he was up on hands and knees just a bit and hiking forward, just a little. Hello, crawling? Not too far away, I fear. I'm not a fan of the crawling stage, as mobile babies have all the common sense of a fly. But I can't stop progress, I guess.

With the older two, I loved that stage where you could sit them on the floor and they'd stay put. It meant I could maybe get a couple of things accomplished.... Caleb seems to have skipped that stage entirely. Sitting and mobility have been kind of simultaneous. Great. So it's time to finish the baby-proofing, huh?

Oh, and for his next trick... we're hoping the little peanut learns to sleep all night long.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Raison d'etre

Right... this is my first blog entry ever, so forgive me if it takes me a minute to get my bearings.

But, the reason I'm here: we have three kids. Three boys, to be precise. We think they're pretty cute (duh) and we (and by "we" I mean my husband) take a whole lot of pictures of them. Not all of our family lives nearby, and this seems like a perfect way to keep everybody in touch.

By way of introduction: we are as nuclear as nuclear can be. My husband is the bread-winner, I'm a stay-at-home mom, and our boys' ages are: seven years, three years, and seven months. (I'll talk more about being a SAHM at some point, I'm sure. It's the hardest thing I've ever done.) How's that for brief? Not to mention traditional....

A word on target audience: I'm guessing there will be lots of photos and lots of little entries about what the shortest members of our household are up to. SO... if you don't know us (or-- gasp!-- don't like us), I'll guarantee you'll find this painfully boring and enormously self-serving. If, on the other hand, you are a grandparent of my children, you'll think this blog deserves a Pulitzer. I prefer the latter opinion, but suit yourself.

And a word on photos: we are, perhaps, the last people in the Western Hemisphere who don't take digital photos. That's right: we use film. (You remember, it's a long plastic strip that comes in a little canister....) So before I can post pictures, we have to finish shooting a roll of film, take it to a store and get it developed onto CD, and then upload the photos. All of which means our turn-around time will be a little longer than average. But keep checking: new photos will arrive!

With that, I need to actually get some photos to post here. So smile, everybody! Okay, on three, kids....