Sunday, May 30, 2010

HE GOT HIS TICKET

and he is ready to go!

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Go where?  Well to Kindergarden, of course!  (not till August.... but still!)
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Chase's little preschool had the cutest little gradutation ceremony where the kids were presented with their tickets to Kindergarden.  It was precious :D  They all marched in... or in Chase's case, stormed in.  He was the first kid to come in and I think he was a little embarrased.   Then they sang some songs and where presented with their certificates.  Chase was really excited about this important event....  Although, I think he might have been more excited about the trip to Culver's for custard afterward.  )

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

YOU CAPTURE: SKY

The You Capture challenge this week was SKY.
I am telling you that all week I had my eyes pointed to the sky with my camera in hand.
But of course, ughhh, nothing interesting was happening up there.  It has been HOT, HOT, HOT here in Illinois and when it gets like that the sky is sortof white and bland.  Not interesting, in the least to photograph.

So, I cheated a little and pulled some photos that I took a couple weeks ago and already posted here and combined them with a couple that I shot while out on a drive the other day.

SKY

It was the best I could do!



Certainly there has to be some good SKY to be had out there.  Click here for the link to see what others came up with!
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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

TO POTTY-TRAIN?

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Here is Dylan tossing out his Diaper....  (wearing lovely mis-matching jammies!)
The diaper that HE took off himself.......after getting a fresh one out of the basket for me.  Next, he will open the tabs on the new diaper and hand it to me and at that point all I have to do is put it on him. 

He is practically changing his own diapers these days! 
He obsessively watches everyone in our house use the restroom (GAAAHWK) and asks lots of questions (GRRRRR) and insists on flushing too (BLAHHHHH!)

Wouldn't it appear that he is READY to potty-train?
Right?  Right?
Nope, he adamently REFUSES to put his rear-end anywhere near a toilet. 
We talk about it a lot and I think he GETS it, but I don't think he is ready to actually  DO IT. 
For the record, he is just over 2 1/2.

I am not one to impart any sort of wisdom on the world of potty-training.  Chase was trained in ONE day by my Mother-in-Law while I was at work only weeks after he turned TWO.  I was completely shocked at how quickly he took to it.  Dylan is going to be a whole different story, I am afraid. 

And ughh, we are starting to catch a little heat on the whole potty-training thing.  My husband asks him all the time if he wants to use the potty reminding him that he gets SKITTLES and then asks me when I am going to start working with him. 
I shrug my shoulders and mumble something like, "ummm, soon, I suppose." 
I don't know..... I just don't feel like pushing him. 

So, please, please share and tips, hints or advice you might have..... I think we're gonna need it!

Monday, May 24, 2010

SUNBURNED, TIRED & DIRTY

That's the sign of a good weekend -right? 
Well, if you ask MY guys (big and small) they would wholeheartedly agree. 
And we certainly were....a little pink (not too bad thanks to lots of sunscreen), exhausted and filthy by the end of the weekend. 

It was PLANTING TIME at my house.  My hubby brought home 15 flats of annuals and about 6 flats of perennials. 
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So, first we had to prep the dirt. (I say WE, but you know that means DAVE, right?)
Chase couldn't be happier  - soft, tilled-up, black dirt - a little boy's dream come true!!!
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And an added bonus of playing in the dirt:  finding WORMS! 
"Look MOM!"
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"Look Brother!"
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Dylan wanted to get in on the fun too!  Although, he is much more reluctant to get dirty... he was happier to stand in the grass and dig.
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This is the face of a MAN on a MISSION.  He appointed himself our head gardener all weekend. 
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And here is how the flowers looked once they were all in.  I love the nice, neat rows.  That only happened because Dave went behind the boys and I and replanted everything that we put in the ground.  Even mine!!!  Apparently I am not the greatest gardener... who knew!?!?  So, I gave up and went back to the camera.... Ahhhhhh......MUCH better!
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I am interjecting this story so I don't forget.
Chase came into my bathroom and said, "Mom, I guess I am growing up now."
"No, Honey, I thought we talked about that.  You are going to stay my little boy FOR.EVER!" 
(I always kid him that I am not going to let him grow up.) 
"Moooooom...... I AM getting bigger because LOOK I have a pimple on my arm!" pointing to the little red bump.  He is seriously excited about a pimple that he thinks he has on his arm. 
"And uh, Mom, you must be REALLY OLD.  You have TWO pimples on your chin!" 
Sighhh......
Then he dashes off.... "Dylan, look at my pimple!!!! Someday you will have them too!"

And another little story from our weekend. 
After the planting was done, Dave was pulling weeds in the back yard and asked me to get the bucket out of the back of his truck to put the weeds in. 
Sure!  I strolled over and grabbed the bucket, happened to just glance in, and AHHHHHH -  SCREAMMMMM!!!!!!  This little guy was in the bucket and gave me quite a fright. (The entire neighborhood heard me scream!)
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I was so mad at my hubby, I think he is trying to weaken my HEART!   He assured me that he didn't do it on purpose - but STILL! 
He apparently forgot that he rescued this little dude from the road on his way home from work. 
So, he saved his life only to bring him to my house where he was tormented for the day.   I think the turtle would have preferred to take his chances on the ROAD.  He was just a LITTLE stressed out..... between me taking his picture, Dylan tossing food (leaves and grass) in on him constantly, every neighborhood kid coming over to poke and prod, and Chase dropping him a couple times.  Opps!
"Don't worry Mom!  He has a HELMET on his BACK!  He won't get hurt!!!"

Poor, Poor turtle. 
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And while we are on the subject of wildlife, I took this photo from at our friend's house the other day.  A robin nested right on a table on their deck.  The kids were amazed with the baby birds.
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Dylan helped daddy water in all the new flowers and plants. 
The boys fight over this honor! 
(My hubby is so much more patient than me!)
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Man, were we ready to tuck these little guys in come Sunday evening. 
And as shocking as this sounds, I think they were READY too.
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Friday, May 21, 2010

THIRTY-THREE

What a week!
It was a busy one.  We had lots going on around here, as usual, but in addition to all the normal STUFF  - I celebrated a BIRTHDAY.    It is weird for me to say that {I} celebrated a Birthday.  No?  Okay, probably not to you.... but it is.  Never in my life, really, have {I} ever celebrated a Birthday.... that is what happens when you are a  twin.  {WE} obviously celebrate our Birthday's on the same day.  BUT..... in our crazy family we also celebrate my Brother's birthday on that same day too.  My sister and I were born on his 4th Birthday.  So, all three kids in our family were all born on May 20th.   Kinda crazy, huh? 


Crazy, yes, but it was always such a blast growing up sharing our birthdays together. 

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(Mom, you are killing me with these old polaroids!)
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Unfortunately it has been YEARS since we were able to celebrate with Matty since he lives all the way across the country, but Beth and I have never skipped a year (I don't think, anyway!)

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So, here we are... another YEAR older, another YEAR wiser!!  :D 
Have a good weekend.  Cheers!

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{Yes, we ordered matching beers - some things never change!  I do love a good beer, anything that they throw fruit in is right up my alley.}

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

YOU CAPTURE: DOF

The You Capture challenge was Depth of Field this week, which in my book, is pretty COOL stuff.  So, I hopped right to it and wandered around my house snapping away, which really isn't that far off of what I normally do!  
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Here is the link to check out Beth's blog.  Head on over to see all the other DOF entries. 

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

BLOGGING

I have started and stopped, written and rewritten this post so many times.... and here I am AGAIN starting over from scratch.   

**TAKE 6**
 
So BLOGGING..... I am just going to TOSS that word out there. 
Blogging is.... well, so many things.  Maybe that is why I have a hard time writing this post. 
My question to you (fellow bloggers) is: do people in your life think that blogging is strange or weird? 

I get the feeling that many people in my life DO think it is a little odd or, prehaps, really odd. 
And I guess it is, kind of, when you think about it.
BLOGGING = a lot of SHARING
Which is fine for me because I AM a sharer.  I love to share....  it must be part of my genetic make-up or something.   But sharing like this, in such a public way, is a little scary, no?    Because ANYONE can see it.  Will I ever regret putting all this information out there?  

Friends have asked me, "Aren't you worried about weirdos and stalkers reading your blog?"
No, I am not overly worried.  I don't know why, I am just not...  (none of you reading this are weirdo's, right?)  With so many other great bloggers (BIG bloggers, PROFESSIONAL bloggers) out there, I feel like there is safety in numbers. 

So why BLOG?  What is the purpose?  That seems to be a big question and one that I ask myself often.   I could write a private journal, afterall if I really just wanted to document.  Which I certainly could do, but like I said before, I am sharer and:

I like that others can pop in and get a peek into our life.  The very fact that other's can read this is part of what motivates me to keep putting stuff out there.
I like that my Mom, who lives all the way across the country, can catch little glimpses of the everyday stuff that she would otherwise miss out on. 
I like that this is my place to record the endless chatter in my head, although at times I think BLOGGING has created even more chatter... but that is mainly because I am a NUT.
I like that I have connected with people across the country that take the time to drop by here and say hello every so often and allow me to peek into their worlds too.   And YES, some of them are strangers, but it still comforting.
I like that through blogging I feel a little less alone in this parenting thing.  There is so much good advice, support, wisdom, humor and inspiration to be had out there!
I really like that I will read this 20 years from now and be so grateful for all the time and energy that I put into it.

So, although blogging is time-consuming, draining, obsessive and a little LOT intimidating sometimes, I will continue to carve out time to come here and write and share photos because it makes me happy.    For how long I will do this, I don't know.  Until I get bored with it, I guess.  Until then, it is part of my life and who I am right now.... even if it is WIERD!

I would love to hear your take on blogging and how your family and friends have reacted to it.  Please do share!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

STRIKING THE RIGHT BALANCE

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I have been thinking about this a lot lately, so I am just going to spill it out here......
How much is too much and how much is not enough?
(When it comes to parenting that is.)
I struggle with giving my little guys the right amount of freedom, time, space, opportunities, challenges, territory, creative outlets, imagination, etc..... you get the idea - right?   I am sure that these are struggles that all parents face as their little tots turn into kids.  And as kids get older, it is natural for them to spread their wings a little and branch out.  They need that freedom, it is all part of growing UP.  But as a parent, isn't it a natural reaction to want to hold them close and keep them safe (FOREVER -HA!)

Being the Nervous Nelly that I am, I have qualms about so many things when it comes to parenting my little guys, but especially Chase just because he is the oldest.  Like: is he old enough to play outside by himself (he is 5 1/2 and we don't have a fence); is he old enough to play hockey with the older neighborhood kids who often play in the street; is he OK to go in the Men's room even if I am right outside the door????    For pete's sake, I even feel guilty sending them (reluctantly) to the basement to play while I unload the dishwasher.     Kids should learn to play by themselves without Mom & Dad -right?  In my heart, I know that I am doing them a service by teaching them entertain themselves, but I can't help but feel a twinge guilty (especially when they whine and beg me to play with them!)

So, when I start to feel guilty, I just look back at my childhood and remember that our parents didn't really play with us.   Not that my parents were bad parents (far, FAR from it), it is just that they are from a different generation and parented so much differently than we do.  And why is that? 

"It is a different world today than it was back then."  That is what I tell myself anyway.  But, is it?  OR, is it the parents that have changed?  Sometimes I think that maybe we just have more time on our hands.  Time that we use to fret and worry and over-protect. Time that we also use to nurture and teach and guide and.... micro-manage, a little, maybe??? 

So, I guess what it comes down to is knowing your own child and what they are capable of and ready for.  But geez, sometimes I wish I knew (really KNEW, deep down) that I was doing all the right things for my kids; giving them just ENOUGH but NOT too MUCH!

Now, if I could just find that Mommy Handbook that they came with.......   :D

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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

SPLASHES OF ::YELLOW:: AT MY HOUSE

YELLOW

This week's You Capture Challenge was YELLOW.   My mind blanked out on this one, so I glanced around my house to get some YELLOW inspired photos.  Here goes......

First Strip: (top to bottom)
1.  Bananas, which almost always grace our countertops.
2.  Cut up lemons. (Okay, so these first two really don't need any explaination.  They are pretty CUT and dry. HA, ha, ha.)   I have been using lots of lemons lately in an attempt to drink more water and NO soda. 
3.  Our very own CONSTRUCTION SITE per Chase and Dylan.  This is such an every day scene in my house, it doesn't even phase me anymore.  Boys and their trucks.... ey, yi, yi!   Hey, on the bright side, I am getting pretty good at hurdling.

Second Strip: (top to bottom)
1.  Chase reading Dylan some old Nursery Rhymes from our "vintage book collection" (the books that Me'Me' saved from Dave's youth!)  It melts my heart to see them happily reading together.  Trust me that it was a very rare moment!
2.  My boys would FLIP if this was our dog.  It's not.  But isn't he precious?? **melt** I had to slip in a photo of our neighbor's Golden Retriever pup.... I mean, the theme is YELLOW and all.
3.  And, LAST but certainly not LEAST..... the Man with the YELLOW Hat!  We see a LOT of him around here and I couldn't leave him out, he would be crushed.  :D   (And YES, like a total nerd, I took a photo of him on TV.)

Hop on over here to see everyone else's YELLOWness. 

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Sunday, May 9, 2010

MOMMY'S DAY

I finally figured out that Mother's Day is really more about appreciating my kids rather than them appreciating me.  (At this point in our lives, anyway!)  Today is the day to remember how honored I am to be a Mommy, specifically Chase and Dylan's Mommy!  I sincerely feel blessed to even be celebrating this holiday after struggling with infertility issues for years before having Chase.  It is easy for me to get wrapped up in the negative, the bad, the ugly of parenthood and completely forget that being a Mommy is the BEST and most important job I will ever have.

So, although today was Mother's Day the boys still whined and fought and argued and behaved just like 2 and 5 year old's do.  And I wouldn't have it any other way!

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Chase was flying high in our backyard after our lovely brunch out.  It was a superb day.  THE ABSOLUTE BEST :D  Now, if only I could have gotten to spend some time with MY Mommy!  ***sniff, sniff***   
Good thing I just booked some flights to Idaho for 10 whole days in July! 
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