Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Teaching and Learning

As a family, we've been trying to get Will to talk more and more!  Especially when he has two older siblings that like to make up words (great for language development and reading skills) like "Shake and Shunk" for "Steak and Shake."
The other night, Eric took Molly while the boys stayed home with me.  They head upstairs while I finish cleaning up dinner and I heard Jack give Will a language lesson.  "Will, say ball," "Ball."  "Will, say Jack,"  "Jack."  "Say, choo-choo, dog, truck, Sissy (Molly), trash truck, hot dog..." and so on and with each word you hear Will's sweet little voice.  Then, I hear Jack go, "Will, say spit!"  Followed by spitting sounds and two little boys laughing hysterically!  I go up there a few spits later, and find Will covered in spit and both have two huge smiles!  Jack says, "Mommy, I'm teaching Will to talk!  Will, say spit!"  And Will spits all over himself, laughs with Jack and looks at me proudly!  "Will! Are you spitting?!"  I asked him and he replies, "uh-uh" (his way of saying no) and shakes his head no!  Really?  Lying to your mother and spitting when not brushing your teeth?!  Oh, I love my boys!

Love them so much!

Had to add one of my favorite little girl!  We love our Sissy!  This isn't the actual cake eating contest night, but from a night around her birthday and she's eating one of her birthday cupcakes!  I love her!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Opposite of Martha

It happened again...I tried to be all crafty with my kids by baking and creating things.  It didn't work so well!  What is wrong with me?!!  I could do so many crafty*things when I taught preschool and elementary school...that's 12 and 24 kids in those classes and I can't even handle my own 3 children.  Why?!!
(*Yes, I know "crafty" means something else besides doing crafts, my husband loved Beastie Boys in high school and we used to drive around in his car you could hear before see  blasting Beastie Boys.  "She's Crafty, she's gets around..."  She gets around, right, get it.  But crafty?  What does that mean?  Not make crafts?  Then what?  Why do songs never explain what things mean?  Like O.P.P.  by Naughty by Nature...what does that mean?  )

Here are the details:

1.  A fun cooking activity on a hot day!:  Let's make a chocolate cake!  It's only 100 degrees outside but we need something to do and baking sounds like fun!  And since we're trying to be more healthy, let's make a low cholesterol cake!  Perfect!  The 2 older kids and I whip together the ingredients, baked to perfection, cheers, no mess ups!  Put the kids to bed while the cakes cool and about an hour later, I go in to frost with store bought frosting (let's not get carried away) and put the first knife full and the cake underneath crumbles.  Every time frosting touched the cake, it crumbled more and more!  Then, I tried to rearrange the cake with my hands and it just got worse.  Insert pulling hair, a few choice words, and near tears by myself!  I somehow managed to cover the cake with frosting and the family inhaled it (it was like they were practicing for a cake eating contest, that will be my next numbered post) and all was well, except I don't know what went wrong!  Martha, can you explain to me the crumbling of the cake when we followed directions to a t?

2.  Cake eating contest:  Trying to keep the house clean when friends are coming over!  I spent the day keeping our children entertained, fed, and civil (can't always accomplish all 3 in 1 day a lot of days) and things were going great!  I spent nap time cleaning and putting things away because I had a few friends coming over that night.  Go to swimming lessons, make dinner and tell Eric, "Please, just take care of them while I finish getting the kitchen cleaned up and food ready for my friends."  I go to change clothes after I clean up dinner and return to the cake eating contest.  There was chocolate cake all over the kitchen and my children, like head to toe, floor to ceiling, with the table and counters in between.  They were all licking their plates with big smiles on their plate and Eric had the look of pride, "They love your cake!  When do you want me to take them upstairs?  Oh, need help cleaning up?"  Not so calmly, I said just get them out of here, and tried my best to not completely lose it (didn't do so well, I'm not perfect).  So, would Martha allow chocolate cake near her kitchen before friends coming over?  NEVER!  How would she clean up crumbled chocolate cake off her children* and kitchen (*she only had 1 child, so there Martha!)?  Luckily, I have sweet, understanding friends and most of the kitchen was clean by the time they arrived!  And my family is very loving and forgiving!

3.  Play-doo!:  Why I hate play-doo!  Loved it when I taught, so great for building children's fine motor skills, prepare holding crayons and pencils, and great for the imagination!  All at school!  At home, I see it as a mess that gets into and not limited to:  the blinds, chairs, table crease, tile, crocs, children's fingernails, hair, cabinets, couches, carpet, light bulbs, and Wii remotes.  Now, what you must be thinking is, why do you even have play--doo if you don't have a strong love for it?  Good question!  I had a baby-sitter come
 and watch the younger 2 and told to play with anything EXCEPT play-doo!  Martha, what?  Advice?

4.  Cleaning:  Spilled Cocoa Krispies!  They were on sale, I had a coupon, a win win!  Until the morning Molly begged for them, she's a toast and banana with peanut butter girl, so I said, "Just don't make a big mess!"  She did great until she was full, and started smashing those Cocoa Krispies with her spoon.  Oh, these are dry by the way, no milk in the bowl!  I'm doing the usual morning "stuff" of changing diapers, making breakfast, ironing Eric's work clothes (I'm such a sucker), and who knows what else, so by the time I found her, there was a huge mess!  Natural consequence, clean up your mess, I even offered to clean to mess on the table, knowing she couldn't do the table and floor.  An hour and a half later, tears, screams, a few choice words from Molly because I'm a "mean, poopy head mommy," and the mess was cleaned up!  Have never seen Martha give tips about a)cleaning up smashed Cocoa Krispies b)  with a screaming 3 year old  c) keeping the curious, fun-loving, helpful little brother out of the mess  and d) keeping my calm and composure.

These are the reasons why I'm the opposite of Martha.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Purse Game

Last Tuesday night, I was at our church bible study and while meeting in our small groups, my purse tipped over and contents fell out.  The nice lady next to me eyes bugged out and she went, "wow, that's a lot of stuff!"  Looking down and then looking all over the group, I realize 1.)  I have by far the largest purse  2.)  Yes, there was a lot of stuff!  How embarrassing!  She then went on to say, "If the world was ending, I want to be with you!  What a prepared mommy you are!"  Awesome!  So, in honor of my huge, world ending purse, I wanted to  play the purse game.  You know the game you play to see how has the most random stuff in their purse, not including your wallet, cellphone, keys but key chains are acceptable.  Here we go:

1.  A Kindermusik On the Go~a booklet of songs for when the kids and I are at the doctor's office, dentist, a long line at Wal-Mart (seriously, open one more lane!)
2.  A kazoo
3.  Friends garage door opener
4.  A Paper Fan
5.  Sunscreen
6.  Play-doo
7.  1st aid kit (mini)
8.  Small traveling kit (which my kids love to play in, why?!)  that contains deodorant, tampons, and more band-aids
9.  3 trains
10.  Train whistle
11.  Baby wipes
12.  Diapers
13.  A mini magna-doodle
14.  Coupon accordion with thousands of coupons falling out (I'm not the most organized)
15.  Sunglasses~mine, purple Tinkerbell, Thomas the Train (Will's), and Car's (Jacks)

Random?  Yes!  Survival at the end of the world?  Most likely not!  Well, maybe for a few hours!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

New Orleans!!!

Eric and I went our first adult-only vacation in four years the last week of June and went to New Orleans!  We had such a great time in the short time we were there and LOVED the Big Easy!  Here is a summary of our days  there:
Monday, June 27th
We left for the airport at 6 am and I was a little sad that the kids would be asleep when we left!  Never fear, Will woke up before we left and I got in some last minute cuddles!  
Did the usual airport stuff, hear Eric moan about how we didn't have an ipad 2 or how this would be the perfect time to have an ipad 2.  
Got on the plane, took a picture of us in our seat and Eric was so embarrassed, he'll live!
Arrived in New Orleans at 9am, love the short flight!  Found our luggage, shuttle, and headed to the hotel!  After a few stops at other hotels, we made it, checked in and looked at each with eager anticipation and it was only 10 in the morning!  
The 1st obvious stop was Bourbon Street, only a block away!  We walked up and down it, got rained on a bit and headed over to Jackson Square!  
Ate lunch, which we shared a Louisiana Lemonade, a muffuletta (yummy), and a super delicious dessert that I forget what it was, but yummy anyways!  Then, nap time!
After our long naps, we headed to Pat O'Briens for hurricane, watched some Wimbledon, and waited for another storm to pass!  So much fun!  Then we went to a karaoke bar and listened to people sing their little hearts out!  Since it was happy hour, we enjoy 3 for 1 beers, what a price!  So good!  Eric decided he was hungry and we went to a small bar in the French Market and had wings and beer!  Eventually, we headed back to Bourbon Street, found a bar with a balcony over the street and people watched while drinking a few more beers and snacked on friend pickles.  After a long day of eating, drinking and walking, we headed back to the hotel and slept so peacefully!  
Side note: Our room was thisclosetotheelevator (Like, shared a wall with it) and heard the ding of the elevator every time the elevator arrived and I was a little nervous about not sleeping!  My sleep is precious and I NEVER sleep in!  No need to stress, just turn on the bathroom fan and presto!  An instant noise blocker!  Slept like I did before we had kids!
Tuesday, June 28th:
Woke up, showered, and enjoyed breakfast at our hotel, which was FREE!  Yay!
Went to the Steamboat Natchez and waited in line for the 11:30 tour!  It was a great little tour of New Orleans from the Mississippi!  I grew up along the Mississippi River when we lived in Davenport, actually could see it from our house and loved hearing the riverboats and barges going up and down daily!  Well, along the steamboat tour in New Orleans, we saw a ton of barges and it brought back so many memories of my childhood!  A good time for sure!  

Afterwards, we were starving, of course!  We went to Cafe Beignet and it was FABULOUS!  I had the jambalaya and Eric had the shrimp poboy!  Of course we had beignet's afterwards and heaven!  Everything was heaven!  
Nap time!
Happy Hour!  3 for 1 beers again at our karaoke bar!  Love it!  Dinner at another cafe and I had the red beans and rice while Eric had something else....can't remember!  All the meals are blending together, I just remember he had a salad with a ton of tomatoes and I love tomatoes!  
Back to Bourbon Street, went to Howl at the Moon and I was so disappointed!  I had so much fun at the other's I've been to around the country (Kansas City and San Antonio, really a world class traveler) and New Orleans disappointed!  So, then we went to a hotel that has a carousel and it was so cute, but crowded, like no seats in the entire bar!  Oh well!  So, we're walking around and we found a jazz club that was SO MUCH FUN!  A jazz band was playing and we just relaxed and enjoyed the music and drinks!  Best HURRICANES EVER!!  If you ever visit New Orleans, visit Fritzel's!!!  So much fun and we were there for a long time!  
Wednesday, June 29th:
Woke up, laid in bed watching TV (miss that, no TV in our room anymore), and finally showered, dressed and went to breakfast.  It ended at 10 and I think we walked in at 9:57.  Seriously but we had plenty of food and it was yummy!  
Went to over to Canal Street, walked along the Mississippi and walked back along Royal Street.  One of my favorite streets ever!  So cute!  So many cute shops, galleries, and restaurants!  LOVE it!  
Hungry, so went to a brewery and had yummy edamame and sliders and fries, an odd combo but so good!  Along with a cold Dr. Pepper!  
We then went a horse carriage tour from Jackson Square with a cute, charming couple from England!  They were so excited to hear that we were from Texas because they were heading our way in a few days in search of Willie Nelson!  They even asked if we had seen him.  No, Texas is a little big!  
After the tour, we went to Lafitte's Blacksmith Bar, an old bar with no electricity and all the celebs visit.  Sadly, no Brad Pitt, I checked, but Nicholas Cage was there a few weeks ago and got arrested for public intoxication when he couldn't find his house.  The random facts you learn!
Then, we had to have a few more beignet's and went to Cafe du Monde, delicious!  So yummy!  I can only imagine my kids eating them and listening to the jazz band playing next to us!  Jack loving the tubas and Molly and Will loving all the powdered sugar!    
We then walked back to our hotel and waited for our shuttle!  Along the way, we saw the fun places we had visited and enjoyed the sights along Bourbon Street, not the smell though!  100 degrees and trash don't mix well!  
It was pretty uneventful on our way to the airport and home, we made the best of our last few quiet hours together.  Of course we planned our next trip as a family and just as a couple, hope it doesn't take another 4 years!  We also want to thank Grandma Marsha!  The kids loved every second with her and all the Sprite, skittles, and Lucky Charms, plus eating out all the time!  I'm so excited to go back!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

A tad behind

On many things...finishing painting our dining room (seriously, just take down the blinds and the windows will be done in an instant...Eric!), folding laundry, organizing our downstairs closest (can we fit anything else in there?!), and obviously my blog posts!  Sorry!  So much fun and exciting things have happened in the past few weeks and we've been having a blast enjoying everything, or I'm too exhausted to update the blog!  That will change, I promise!  Here is what you get to look forward to....
1.  Molly and Jack's trip to San Antonio with Grandma and our 1 child weekend with Will, seriously so easy with 1 kid!
2.  Our trip to New Orleans!  Amazing!
3.  4th of July, my favorite holiday!
4.  Updates and fun stories about the kids!  We are doing date nights with our kids and Molly and I went to the pool together today!  We had so much fun talking and hanging out!  She is so fun, sweet, and loving!  I want to be her mother first, but I look forward to our friendship too!  I'm one lucky mommy!
5.  More baking from Liz...why?!!  I really just need to stop and can't!

You can stop going through withdrawal from not knowing what is happening with The Brew Crew!