Friday, July 30, 2010

Say WHAT?!?


I was inspired to add some of my own comments to this discussion that was started by MckMama. Here are some of the things I have said lately, at least the ones that won't be too embarrassing for the boys if they read this when they are older:
  • No, please do not "eat your brother for real" like a tiger - even if he asks you to.
  • So, your stuffed animal said that and not you? Well if he decides to say that again then he will have to go to time out.
  • I am sorry that you don't want to eat that now since it is what you just demanded. It is what I fixed so if you want to eat anything, that is what you may eat.
Thursday, July 15, 2010

A little civilizing

One of the main jobs of parents is to civilize their children. We are supposed to teach them how to live responsibly and courteously with the rest of society. Now, I have been around boys all of my life, but parenting and trying to civilize two of these creatures has turned out to be quite a challenge for me.

Today, I felt like I had made a small measure of progress with my older son. During our marathon shopping session today, he burped in the middle of the store and then started laughing. Not seeing much progress yet? Well, at that point I hadn't either, but after I said his name he quickly said, "I am embarrassed now." I made sure that he was embarrassed by what he did - not because he got in trouble. I don't know for sure whether he really was embarrassed, but at least faking it to be polite is part of being civilized. Right?

The next opportunity for teaching occurred shortly after that. We left the store (which happened to be a party store) without buying anything. We were about to get in the van when I noticed that the little one's shirt was tucked in one side and looked a little odd. When I asked him what had happened to his shirt and reached to fix it, I felt a familiar object. It was a container of mini m&m's. I knew the shape, but it was not supposed to be in his pants. Further probing revealed a miniature Reese's peanut butter cup, too. I looked all in his pants to make sure that was all he had taken and then told him he would have to take it back into the store and tell them he had taken it. Now, I understand that the little one is very little, but he also knows better than to take things we have not paid for. Considering his food-sneaking ways (which have been documented many times in this blog), I was not surprised that he was the one to do this first, or that the pilfered items were candy. Anyway, he became very shy on the way back into the store. He tried just putting the candy back where it belonged, but I wouldn't let him do that. I told him he had to give it back to the workers and tell them he had taken it. I put the items on the counter and waited for them to finish with a customer. When they turned to me, I turned to him, and he had backed away and was trying to "disappear". He wanted me to tell them for him, so I did. One of the ladies looked very stern and without saying anything to me walked around the counter and came over to us. She got to my son, called him by name (which she had heard me call him) ... and thanked him for coming back and giving the candy back. She got a (somewhat hesitant) high-five out of him, too. (I quietly thanked her for this as we left.) We headed back to the van and I could tell that my son was very embarrassed about all of this, so I picked him up and carried him to the van. He put his head on my shoulder and held me tight. I was a little worried that he was going to start crying, but he didn't. I told him when we got to the van that everybody does bad stuff sometimes, but he did the right thing by taking the candy back inside - and that was important. It was a hard lesson for him, I think, but I hope he will remember it.

A parent's job is not easy, but it is important. Now it is time for another important part of my job - loving on my boys (and embarrassing them with hugs and kisses).
Wednesday, July 14, 2010

More Iced Coffee ... MMMMMM!!!!

Here are my true confessions:
1. I LOVE iced coffee.
2. I drink a lot of it in the summer.
3. I have been using my drip coffee maker instead of my french press because I drink more than 1 pot of french press in a day usually.
4. I am trying to cut back.
5. I have found a new recipe for iced coffee using a COLD-press method that might make cutting back even harder for me.
6. Because I love you all I am sharing the recipe with you.

Click here to go to the Deep South Dish blog and see the recipe.

Now I must go and start my coffee for tomorrow. ;-)
Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Pay attention to the details

I should have done that before I posted pictures in the last entry. Apparently I was oblivious (for several days) to the fact that Joel colored on the bottom footboard with a black marker. I noticed it today, but was informed that Dad had already seen it. I thought the drawing looked like lungs, but apparently Dad saw something else (at least according to Joel). So, what do you see? (Scroll down for Joel's answer of what it is.)

Joel says it's a motorcycle. Do you think there's a budding artist in my house?
Saturday, July 10, 2010

Ants in their pants!

The boys were very excited that we (or, their dad) were able to get their bunk beds fully operational today! We had the bunk beds on top of each other, but we didn't have the hook to attach the ladder to the beds until today. The boys quickly figured out ways to get up there anyway, and they made the top bunk into a fort or hideout.

Notice the chair pulled up to the end of the bed. That's how Joel got up. Evan just pulled himself by the edge of the top bunk.

Every hideout needs rules. Apparently you have to have tickets to get into this one - and only boys can have tickets. Joel was delighted to be the one to make the tickets.

We didn't really want them sleeping up there until we had the ladder secured, though. So, tonight is the first night in the bunk beds.
Apparently Evan enjoys being on the top bunk. Joel is looking through "binoculars". It has something to do with possible monsters, but I can't remember the details right now.

Joel could not be still at bedtime! He was finally still for a few seconds when I told him he looked like he had ants in his pants. He took the time to check his pants and make sure that there weren't any ants in there. I love that kid! He also tried to help his older brother out by giving him 3 extra blankets in case he had a night-time "accident". I guess he was thinking it would be helpful to have the extra blankets in place, so that Evan wouldn't have to get down to find a replacement. Evan was not as touched by this gesture as I was. He just told Joel that he wouldn't pee in the bed. We will need to re-arrange the furniture in the room and paint, but it is slowly turning into a real big boy room.
Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Seahorse and The Flounder

... finished their swim lessons today! These are the same classes they took at the end of last summer, and they were still the youngest and smallest in their classes. Joel's teacher was amazed at his age, and thought he was doing quite well for a 4-year-old. I think Evan's teacher was the same.

Joel needs to be able to get to a float on his own better and to swim better on his back. Considering that most of the kids in his class are at least 2 years older than him and he was one of the best stomach swimmers and the best at getting the dive toys under the water, we are happy with his progress. I am most proud of the fact that he went to his class willingly, listened to his teacher, was engaged, and even volunteered to do things.

Evan needs to develop more endurance and get more mature muscles. When he is trying, he has a beautiful freestyle stroke. He is learning "rotary breathing" (which is turning the head to the side for breathing when doing the freestyle). This year he learned to tread water and was introduced to the breast stroke. The breast stroke was a little harder for him to coordinate, but that should get better as his muscles mature, too. He passed his swim test and was very excited!

Both of my boys love the water, and I am feeling more confident taking them to the pool by myself this year. At this point I think they are both more confident swimmers than I am, so our next step might be for me to take some swim lessons - and I am not kidding!
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