Sunday, August 29, 2010

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Last night proved to be a beautiful night to cross off another adventure on our Summer List. We're a baseball loving family, so I'm sure we would have found ourselves at the ball park at some point during the summer, but after Drew received a free ticket for completing the summer library program and Brad had won two game vouchers at a golf fundraiser earlier this summer, we definitely didn't want to let the season go by without catching at least one game. :)

The Peoria Chiefs are the single A farm team for the Chicago Cubs, and even though Brad's a lifelong Cubs fan, Drew sported his Twins shirt at the game. It couldn't be helped. :) It was a beautiful night, with a temperature of 81 degrees at the start of the game, and lowering to 75 degrees as the game progressed. Both boys did amazingly well. Thankfully there were about four open seats next to us so we could spread out a bit and the boys could roam. Brad spent a lot of time telling Drew about the game, what was happening, and to watch for the ball. Reed, for the most part, enjoyed people watching. :) We knew that there would be fireworks after the game, but we hadn't told Drew about it as we knew that if we told him, that's all he'd talk about, wanting to see them "right now." It must have been about halfway through the game when the stadium announcer mentioned it, and Drew was actually listening to him! From that point on, he was very excited about baseball! Or rather, very excited about seeing the fireworks when the game was over!

We had a really great time. Really great.

I love my family. :)

Oh, and the Chiefs won, 7-1.

Our night was complete with Homer the mascot...

...and a really great fireworks show.

Picture of the Day, Week 34

Drew vs. Papa, a head to head Cars competition. Papa took control on the racetrack, but Drew couldn't be beat when he was off-roadin'!

Wonder of all more pacifier! Reed was practically born with that thing in his mouth, and with all of his troubles early on, it's been such a lifesaver for him, and for us! I put him to bed Sunday night without one (totally unintentionally...I just forgot to bring one up to his room when I tucked him in) and we haven't looked back. He asked for it once this week before naptime (and by "asked" I mean he pointed at the cupboard we keep them in and grunted) but I diverted his attention and he went without. This easy weening process has been a pleasant (and welcome!) surprise!

Tuesday {8.24.10}
I do have a picture for today, but I won't be sharing it here because the Internet doesn't need to know everything. :) And no, I'm not pregnant.
So, moving on to some super cuteness...

The heat has finally bypassed us for a few days and we were able to turn off the air conditioning and open the windows. And oh my stars look at those lips!

Another beautiful day and the boys and I enjoyed it thoroughly, visiting two parks in the morning and playing in our backyard after quiet time this afternoon. Read all about it here.

You know those moments when it's just too quiet in the house? When you just know that trouble is brewing? That's what I thought when it was unusually quiet for an unusually long period of time. Much to my surprise, I saw this when I peeked around the corner.

A night at the ballpark! We took the boys to see the Peoria Chiefs play tonight, complete with fireworks after the game. We were so impressed with how well the boys behaved, and both Brad and I enjoyed the night so much. Loved this.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Child's Play

"Whatcha got there, Monkey?"

Oh, mama's got the camera...pause to say "cheese!"

"Uh oh. Where'd it go, Monkey?

"Better go find it!"

"Do you see it, buddy?"

"Got it?"

"You found it!"


Reed played this little game for about five minutes this afternoon. Dropping the remote on one side of the ottoman, running to the other side to find it, then back again to do it all over. This kid certainly can entertain himself!

Parks and Rec

One of my goals for this summer was to spend more time outdoors with the boys. This was a really great goal back in May, when we were still experiencing a bit cooler, breezier days.

And then it got hot.

And let me just say...I don't like hot.

Needless to say, we haven't been out much, which I feel badly about. I'm just not an outdoorsy person in the heat. I love fresh air when it's 70 degree fresh air blowing through the trees. Ninety degree fresh air, however...not so much. But nonetheless, I tried. We were outside in the backyard pretty frequently during the month of June, and if running errands counts, we're outside all the time. :) Then there are other days that our pale skin doesn't see the likes of the sun. And usually, I'm okay with that. However, one antsy 17 month old without enough roaming room plus one three-year-old who actually tells me he's bored is a BIG sign we need to get out more often!

The heat has finally subsided enough in the past couple days that we've actually been able to turn off the A/C (yay!) and yesterday, we high-tailed it on over to the park to play! And let me just say, that both boys were ecstatic. Maybe a little too ecstatic. Huh. I guess we hadn't been outside in a while...

Drew said he wanted to walk. Not ride in the van. Not ride in the stroller. Walk. Well, that kind of eliminates Mineral Springs Park, the one with the massive jungle gym, as it's about a mile from the house. Thankfully I had my thinking cap on and, eventhough Drew said he wanted to walk, I grabbed the double stroller as I knew there was no way I could push a stroller and carry 40 pound Drew when he decided he couldn't walk anymore!

So off to Rotary Park we strolled, which is about five blocks from our house.

This was about all this park had to offer...swings, a couple slides and those few older kid things like monkey bars and a pseudo rock climbing wall.

Drew noticed. And he was less than impressed. After about 15 minutes he said, "What else can we do at this park?"

Good thing I brought that double stroller! In they both went, and off to Mineral Springs we go! (Side note: I got more than enough exercise yesterday!)

It's a good thing that school has started here because the park wasn't busy and both boys were all over the place! But they both had so much fun, running back and forth and climbing and crawling and giggling.

And if that wasn't enough, we had some backyard fun after quiet time. We filled up the pool and played with Buzz's water guns that somehow (while mom was distracted talking on the phone) ended up creating a mud hole...

One stayed clean...

the other did not!

Straight to the tub and into jammies by 4:30 in the afternoon! Both boys were adequately exhausted; Reed sleeping 11 hours last night, and taking a 2 hour nap this morning.

Mission: Accomplished!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Dear Santa...

While the boys and I were at Target yesterday morning, we got distracted in the toy aisle. And by "we" I mean Drew. And by "distracted" I mean "huh?" was the answer I got (repeatedly) as I tried to get his attention. There is one aisle, in particular, that is feeding ground for small children because it has several hand-held video devices on display for tiny little fingers to dabble with. Drew proceeded to inspect all four of these devices, pressing the buttons and watching the screen, all the while telling me "I want this one."

Just so you know, convincing a three-year-old that, NO we can't get that right now, is...umm, how do I say...impossible?

Oh, right. I.M.P.O.S.S.I.B.L.E.

But something magical happened. Somehow, I did convince Drew.

I think it was a little thing called "Christmas Spirit."

I told Drew that we couldn't get it now, but that maybe he should start his Christmas list for Santa. And you know what? He totally went for it!

{That got him to exit the toy aisles, but it didn't get him to stop telling me every 2.5 minutes that "I want that toy" in a very sweet, soft, "I'm such a good boy" voice. HA! This mother shan't be fooled!}

So all the way home he's telling me how we have to start his list. And the first thing he says when we pull into the garage is "let's write to Santa!" and then again when we got inside the house "let's write to Santa!"

Okay, alright already! We'll write to Santa!!


"the toy like Noah's that plays races" =
Leapster with Cars game

"big Buzz Lightyear that shoots wings out" =
the biggest (of course) Buzz at Target, although I don't think the size matters so much as the wings. I got a Buzz for 25 cents at a garage sale when Drew was still a baby, but this Buzz has no wings that shoot out so he can fly. For shame. Poor kid is deprived.

"the one that Rex digs and pulls things out" =
one of those electronic readers for kids. He was playing with one in the Target aisle that was showing Rex (the dinosaur from Toy Story) finding things in a sandbox...or something like that. I really have no idea what he's talking about. But I'm sure Santa knows. ;)

So I tell Drew that we'll have to put his letter in the mail and send it to Santa. I posted it to the fridge so we won't forget (or rather, until I figure out where to send it...)

Fast forward to this morning, our conversation goes a little something like this...

Drew: "How come Santa hasn't come yet?"
Me: "It's not Christmas yet, buddy."
Drew: "Oh. When is it Christmas?"
Me: "Not until it gets really cold outside."
Drew: "When there's snow?"
Me: "Yep, when there's snow."

{Not two minutes later...}
Drew: "Mama, how come there isn't any snow yet?"

Oh, sweet Drew. Four months, buddy. Just four more months.

Monday, August 23, 2010

To Grandmother's House We Go

To Grammy and Papa's house, that is.

When my cousins and I have our annual girls weekend together, it's been "tradition" that my mom and her sister take care of their grandkids at my aunt's house. This year was no different, except that with the count up to five total children between myself and my cousin, Papa was called in for reinforcements! That also provided my parents with the opportunity to whisk the boys off to their place for a few extra days, for some quality grandson time, which of course, provided Brad and I with some quality, quiet time as well!

These photos are from my parents' camera, and since I wasn't there to tell you what's going on in these pictures, I asked Drew to give the commentary for these snapshots.

Pit Stop #1: Aunt Bonita's House

"We're playing soccer in the basement. I'm running fast as I can"

"Talking to Coach Papa."

"That's Olivia."

"Reed's playing with Elmo outside."

"Looking at fireworks at Bonita's house."

"Watching football. The blue team, the green team. We like the red team."

"I'm splashing the rocks into the water so the fish can eat them."

Pit Stop #2: Grammy & Papa's House

"I was swimming. I was playing. I was playing with Avery."

"I'm fixing a puzzle with Uncle Justin."

"Reed's playing in the box, doing whatever he want to do in there."

"A butterfly was on Grammy's flowers."

"Reed doing what he want to do again."

"Looking at the zoo. I was feeding the fish, the ducks. The two ducks were in the water."

"Avery likes Go Fish."

"Say hi to Mommy."

"I'm playing cards again. Go Fish again. Lesley gave that shirt to Avery"

"We're trying to hide from Papa, trying to not sneak up on him."

We know that Grammy and Papa cherished their time with the boys...but we're pretty sure they're exhausted! They brought the boys back last Thursday, and stayed with us for the weekend, heading back home this morning. We know they miss us when we're apart, but I'm thinking they were ready to head back to a quiet house! :)

I'm looking forward to making this a tradition with my parents, as well as with Brad's parents. I treasure my memories of my grandparents, and with experiences like these, I know that my boys will, too.