Thursday, August 28, 2008

Backwards Boy

My littlest guy is learning to dress himself. He wants to do it all by himself. And he is doing a great job except that most days both his shirt and shorts are on backwards and he usually forgets to put on underwear. But it is so endearing that he tries so hard that I don't make him change, I just get a chuckle out of it every time I look at his backwards clothing.

I would take a picture except that my husband lost our camera at Dutch Wonderland last week.

I also would have taken a pic of the kids sleeping last night, it was the cutest thing. Backwards Boy was sleeping in true backwards style. He was on the bottom bunk and partially rolled onto the trundle; so he was laying face down on the trundle but his lower body was still up on the bottom bunk. And my middle son and daughter were cuddled next to each other and my daughter had her arm around my sons shoulders and fell asleep hugging him. It was the cutest thing. It's nice to see her behaving so sweetly since mostly what I see from her is drama.

Now, if only I had a camera!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Pizza Party

Last night we attended at true pizza party.

One of the moms at the pool writes for WC Dish and was conducting research for an upcoming article about pizza. I was especially happy to take part as I still have not found the perfect pizza place.

So here's how it worked. Each family purchased a pizza from a different local pizza eatery. We brought all the pizzas to the pool and cut them into small slices. A "comments" sheet was taped to the box top of each pizza and then we started sampling. It was so much fun!!! First of all, pizza is one of my favorite foods so I was thrilled to have so many to sample (plus it meant I didn't have to cook dinner). It was great to be able to judge one pizza against another and to hear and read other people's comments. And it gave me an opportunity to taste pizza that I would not normally buy (I usually stick to the ones closest to home, that I can walk to.) There were definitely a couple crowd favorites but you'll have to wait until the article is published to find out where to start ordering your pizza.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Fairies Save the Day

My girls had an opportunity to attend a Suzuki Music Camp last week, free of charge! My neighbor runs the camp and needed to fill 2 slots at the last minute because a couple kids dropped out so she asked if my girls would like to participate. The girls LOVED LOVED LOVED it! It was mostly drama, with a little bit of art thrown in. They worked on listening to and creating a dramatic interpretation of a piano piece by Schumann. They performed the drama on the last night of camp. They had such a good time that they want to do it again next summer.

My oldest was the goat (3rd from left) and my younger daughter was a fairy (5th from left).

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Sringsteen, Summer & Bats

Went to a Bruce Springsteen concert last night with my husband. I'm not a big fan but went because my husband really wanted to go. It was a great show! He played non-stop for 3 hours! The man is a machine.

While at the concert, I noticed lots of people talking on cell phones, not to mention texting. I could see their phones glowing in the dark (the ones in the distance) and could see people around me TALKING during the concert. OK.
1. Who are you talking to?
2. Is it really THAT important?
3. How can you even hear the person you're talking to?

And then I found out. My cell phone rings. It's my sister, who is babysitting my kids. She tells me that there are 2 bats in the house! My kids saw a bat flying around the playroom and freaked out. So my sister opened the front door to let it out and went looking for it because it was no longer flying around. She found it on the 3rd floor bathroom floor and it was dead. At this point, she thought this was the problem was solved. She calmed the kids and started to go upstairs to put them to bed and then she saw another (or probably the same bat since the other bat was already dead) flying around! So she went and got my neighbors, a big THANK YOU to Bec & Phil for their patience and kindness and willingness to help!!! Phil bagged the dead bat, YUCK! and my sister managed trap the living one in our dining room window. YUCK! It flew into the window, trying to escape, so she shut the window. So now he or she is stuck in there and is injured as its wing is stuck in the window. YUCK!

My children are traumatized. We just started cleaning out the 3rd flor bedroom YESTERDAY, to move the girls up there. But there is NO WAY they will agree to move up there after a bat-sighting. My son keeps asking if the bat has diabetes (he means rabies) and says that he used to NOT be scared of bats, but now he is, because maybe bats DO suck some peoples blood.

I am going to call Critter Control today and fork over $3000 to hopefully get rid of them once and for all. Except he told us last time that no matter how tightly they secure our house, they can still get back inside through tiny openings on my neighbor's side (we live in a twin and share a common wall.)

But still, if we can seal up our side, at least maybe they won't have access points for entry and they'll stop actually coming INTO the house itself. Why oh why can they not just live in the attic? Why do they have to migrate into the house?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Two In A Row!

We celebrated 2 days in a row of Emma going OUTSIDE every time! And by this I mean she has not even used the Puppy Mat (disposable pee mat) when left home alone. She is holding it all night; when we're not home; and going outside EVERY time during the day. Yay! If she does it again today then I think its safe to say that she is house-broken!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Major Milestone

Great news!!! We've had Emma for 6 weeks and yesterday was the FIRST day that she did not have an accident in the house! Yippee!! Let's see if she can make it 2 in a row.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

My Swallows Hurt

We have 3 sick kids here, I know, who gets sick in the summer? We have had 5 doctor appointments already this week (including orthodontist). Turns out that only 1 kid has strep, apparently the others just have a random virus that involves a high fever and sore throat. My 5 year old son is so precious. When I asked him if his throat hurt, he said, "My throat doesn't hurt but my swallows do" (meaning it hurts when he swallows). He will keep me updated on his condition by saying things like, "Mommy, I think I need more medicine because my swallows are hurting again and when my swallows hurt, my ears hurt too." And then he told me, "I haven't had hardly any bessuchoose this time." I was like what the heck is he talking about? I had to keep asking him and finally I realized that he was trying to say that he has not been sneezing -- he was telling me that he has not had any Bless-You-A-Choos (Bless You + sound you make when sneezing) since being sick. I love how he looks at the world.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Olympics 2024

It seems as though Philadelphia is a contender to host the 2024 Olympics. That would be great. Because I think we might have an Olympian competing and it would be handy to not have to travel great distances to participate/observe.

My 3 year old, who loves to dive, was watching the synchronized diving last night on TV. He was mesmerized. He was sitting on the couch and was mimicking the way the divers cross their legs and arc their arms. After practicing a couple times he said, "Mom? Is this how they do it?" and he showed me his moves (although he was still sitting on the couch). I said, "YES, but you are NOT going to do that into the pool." And he grinned at me with a twinkle in his eye, nodding his head enthusiastically and said, "Yes!" As in: Yes, of course I am, why wouldn't I? It would be fun and of course I know I can do it because I can already dive into the pool AND I can do a flip on the trampoline without using my hands so of course I can do synchronized diving.

I will have to watch him very closely at the pool to make sure he doesn't try.

Friday, August 8, 2008


I have never been any good at analogies. I think I bombed that part of the SATs.

But I know a good analogy when I hear one (I just can't complete them on a timed test).

My next door neighbor has the BEST analogy EVER.

Friday : Weekend :: June : Summer

Let me explain.

Phil says that June is like Friday. June is the start of summer, Friday is the start of the weekend. By the time school ends, June is almost over, just as by the time your workday ends, Friday is almost over. Then comes Saturday, or July. The day (or month) where you sleep in (unless you have little kids), relax, run some errands but basically just enjoy your weekend (or summer). And then comes Sunday, or August. The day (or month) where you start to dread the start of the work week (or school year) and where you have to start getting ready for Monday (or September). The day (or month) where you lament your loss of your weekend (or summer). The day (or month) when you have to start thinking about getting up early for work (or school).

How perfect is that analogy???? So even though the calendar says that it is Friday, Phil says that it is Sunday. And he is right, I am already lamenting the passing of my summer.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Dog Whisperer

I think my 5 year old son might be a dog whisperer.

Our 13 year old Golden Retriever, who is deaf, has been yipping constantly and it is driving me crazy. Today I asked her, "Lady! Why are you barking all the time?" (As if she could hear me or answer me.) My son overheard me and matter-of-factly said, "She just wants her family to love her again." I said, "What are you talking about? What do you mean love her again? We've always loved her." He said, "Well, she just thinks her family doesn't love her anymore." To which I replied, "What do you mean? Why?" And he said, "Because you play with Emma all the time, Lady thinks you don't love her anymore."

Oh my. He doesn't understand that Emma demands more of my time than Lady. But maybe Lady doesnt' understand either. So I laid on the floor next to her and hugged her and kissed her and she kept licking my ear and snuggling into me. And she hasn't yipped since.

I love how kids pay attention to everything while we adults usually pay attention only to the things we can see and hear.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Conversation at the Pool

I had the following conversation with my 3 year old son yesterday afternoon at the pool:

son: Mommy? Can you take me to the bathroom (except it sounds like baf-room).
me: Sure.
son: Can you take me to the BOYS' bathroom?
me: No, I can take you to the girls' bathroom.
son: Aw, mom! The girls' bathroom is too girlie! I want to go to the BOYS' bathroom. (Maybe he knows I called him girlie in yesterday's posting.)
me: Sweetie. I'm not a boy. I cannot go into the boys' bathroom. I am a girl. I have to go into the girls' bathroom.
son: No! You not a girl! You are a mom!
me: Ok, then I will take you into the moms' bathroom.

That seemed to satisfy him so off we went.

And speaking of the pool, this kid is a natural-born swimmer. Last summer he took a running leap into the pool, plunging into the water. I was right there but made no attempt to rescue him, thought I'd let him figure out for himself why he shouldn't just jump into the pool. I thought it would be a good life-lesson for him. He came up sputtering and shocked but he doggie-paddled out of the pool and did it again. It did not seem to phase him in the least.

Well now that he's had some swimming lessons, he is unstoppable. He can swim with decent arm strokes and started DIVING into the pool yesterday. I'm not joking. The first dive was a belly flop but after I showed him how to place his arms, he was doing fantastic dives, especially for a 3 year old.

It's so fun to watch my kids develop and I am still in awe when my children effortlessly possess a skill or talent that I do not possess, despite hours of trying.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


My youngest son, having 2 older sisters, has had to endure endless hours of nail painting, dress up and beauty salon services. The poor kid looks like a girl half of the time.

But he really doesn't mind, he is happy to play along. He does not realize that boys don't paint their nails or wear pony tails in their hair.

Well the girls have finally stumbled upon a hair-do that is respectable and appropriate for a boy. So he's gone from a GirlieBoy to a ManlyBoy in one word: Spike.

In other news, Emma Jean, the poop and pee machine, is FINALLY getting the hang of going OUTSIDE. Yay!!! She is having about 1 accident/day in the house. Which is MUCH preferable to the 6-7/day she was having a few weeks ago. I have trained her to go on command, which she does about 80% of the time. Once she is going on command EVERY time then I will start putting her under the trampoline and giving her the command. That way I won't have to clean up after her. It's been a challenge but she is a wonderful little dog and has brought so much joy to our lives.

Can I just say how much I LOVE LOVE LOVE summer?!!!

1. I am so glad that I am house-training Emma in the warm weather because we have been spending HOURS outside with walks and training and potty breaks. Not to mention hanging around outside at 2AM, waiting for her to go. I cannot imagine how this would work if it were snowing and below freezing.

2. Last night I had the BEST corn on the cob that I have had all summer. It was so sweet and tender and I have 6 more ears in the fridge that I will eat for lunch today. (OK, I won't eat all 6 but it will take a lot of self-control to stop after 2 or 3.) Corn on the cob is one of my FAVORITE foods (besides ice cream) and the fact that it is delicious and abundant only during the month of August makes it even more coveted.

3. August is so quiet in West Chester. I swear half the population is on vacation. The pool is quiet and almost empty; you can walk into just about any restaurant on a Friday or Saturday night and get seated right away! It is the BEST. Life is quiet and slow here and I wait all year for August because it is so calm and relaxing.

4. I feel like a kid in the summer: no homework, no packing lunches, no schedule to keep, warm and sunny days, going to bed late, playing outside, hanging at the pool. It is the BEST BEST BEST. EVERY DAY I think about how much I LOVE summer. And how much I hate winter. But I won't dwell on that right now.

I have been telling my husband that we really have to retire somewhere where it is warm and sunny in the winter. I will come north for Christmas and then back to pseudo-summer. I think I have been watching too many House Hunter International shows -- where people are buying vacation homes with gorgeous views in tropical places. I watched one recently where the house had a raised bed and the buyers wanted to know why. The realtor explained that in the islands, they build the beds higher to take advantage of the Trade Winds. You keep the door and windows open and the trade winds blow across you while you sleep. Ever since I saw that episode, I have been insisting on sleeping with the fan on (my husband prefers it off) and I pretend that the trade winds are blowing over me as the vascilating fan sweeps across me while I'm in bed. Pathetic, I know. But it makes me happy.

OK, can you tell that 2 of my kids are away for the whole week visiting my parents? That's why I am rambling on, I only have 2 kids to take care of!