Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Minor Events

Jed: "Mom, sometimes I just get snot explosions in my nose every now and then."

Zoe is perfectly potty trained except when she wears clothing.

Zane just spent 20 minutes in his car seat lifting up his head and running his hand over the crocheted edge of his blanket. He looked so intense, his little brow furrowed, trying to keep that head up and those flailing hands under control. I'm sure it's normal but to me it's nothing short of miraculous to see such a little person so focused and engaged.

Meet my offspring


"Goofball"
"Super-Pout"
(Seriously, does that lip look unhinged?)



"Cutie Pie!"

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Dishes

Jed volunteered to do the dishes for the first time last night.  I figured he's old enough.



He thought it would get him out of a bath (which it did not) but he enjoyed himself nonetheless.


General Conference Saturday

General Conference weekend we moved out our old (huge) piano, moved in our new (small) piano, reorganized the living room, and then set up in the corner our essential "General Conference Tent." As you can see, even though the room was spotlessly clean at one point that morning, we all settled in quickly.  Notice I am the only one in the children's Conference Tent.
I was pooped after moving all that furniture! (Not to mention cleaning under the couches, which I do fairly often but it's still a daunting task.)
The tent was not spacious, and at one point we all HAD to get in it together which involved a lot of poky body parts and giggling. We didn't get much out of Elder Uchtdorf's talk, but we sure did have fun. :) Thank goodness for Conference magazines and podcasts, eh?
Zoe and I painted our toenails to celebrate.  She LOVES painted toes!
What a great Saturday!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Zany Smiles



Sunday, October 23, 2011

Playing Babies

Zoe emerged from her bedroom this particular morning with a number of friends in tow.
She loves her babies.
We love our babies, too.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Brothers


Jed adores Zane, still, and loves to have photos taken of them together.
Even when they both get distracted, they seem pretty happy together.
A couple days ago, during quiet time Jed volunteered to "babysit" Zane for me while I took a nap. I wrapped Zane up in his blankie, strapped him into his bouncy seat, popped a binky in his mouth and figured he'd be asleep in five minutes. As I lay in my bed, I could hear Jed softly singing "Baby, baby..." and telling a little story to Zane. I fell asleep, cuddled up in bed with Zoe.
Then I was shaken awake by Jed, whose eyes shone with excitement. He jumped up and down, dying to tell me that "Mom, I taught Zane how to love cars and trucks and diggers and everything! Can you believe it?! He really likes it, Mom!" Jed dragged me into the bedroom, and sure enough as he knelt down and with shining eyes held up some little trucks, cooing at the baby, Zane looked up at him and a humongous smile crept across his tiny face. "Look, Mom, he loves it! His little toes are kicking he's so happy!" And sure enough, they were.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Mom and Kids

We still love bedtime stories. I can't believe how big my little babies are.  Remember this?
I love my kidlets.

Father and Son

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

On the Pot

The time has come for Zoe's potty training. I wait to potty train my kids until 1) their diapers can't hold it all anymore, and 2) they are susceptible to bribes. Zoe cleared both requirements 1 and 2 recently, and I've been amazed at how quickly she went from "NO. POTTY." shouting to willing and obedient potty-pants.

STAGE ONE: RESISTANCE
Not to say there wasn't a war in her spirit. The first few days, I would sweetly offer "Do you want to come go potty with Mommy? I have chocolate chips for you!" and then set a clear class jar with chocolate chips right at eye level in front of her on the counter.
Pause. "No potty."
Long, long pause. Much looking with large, desirous eyes at the chocolate.
She points at the chocolate chips. "I wan'."
I chirpily reply, "Then sit on your potty and I'll give you one!" (Everything about potty time is chirpy and cheerful.)
Frowns. "No."
A minute later, she points again.
"I wan'! I wan'!"
"Then just sit down right here and we'll read a book and eat chocolate chips together!"
"NO."
pause.
"No wan' sit."
"That's fine, sweetheart, you don't have to unless you want to."
"I WAN' I WAN' I WAN!" she shouts, stomping her darling little pink girl feet and waving her hand emphatically at the jar.
"All right! Then sit on your potty!"
She frowns at me and sulkily gives in. "All right. I sit."
Turns out that eating chocolate chips and reading books with Mom is pretty fun, though, and after only a day or two of my friendly offer she figured it out. Then we were on to the next stage of training.

STAGE 2 - MARATHON POTTYING
Now that she's figured out that the chocolate flows readily once she's on the pot, now she doesn't want to get off. I distinctly remember this same phase with Jed. I will say, this gets boring really fast. REALLY fast. My bathroom is very small and not very pleasant to spend time in (Though, I might add, very clean.) (In case you were wondering.) So here's where the brilliance shared by my dear friend Jean comes into play. See, she brought me to the light when she explained that mom doesn't even have to do any potty training once you're past your first child. The key is to have the big sibling do it. The house rule is, when Zoe sits on the potty, anyone else helping her get or stay on the potty ALSO gets a treat. Now, those who know Jed know that he takes after his daddy and he will do virtually anything to obtain chocolate. So, guess who's doing the potty training now?
Yep! As long as Jed sits there and reads Zoe books and sings her songs to keep her happy, I provide occasional chocolate chip rewards. It's pretty cute to stand outside the door and hear Jed "reading" books to her. (Imagine a raspy, sing-songy boy falsetto singing again and again "In the bathtub, out of the bathtub, in the bathtub, out of the bathtub! Look, Zoe, there's a bear!") I can get some housework done, only occasionally punctuated by Zoe's shouts for "Mo-uh! Mo-uh!"

STAGE 3 - ZOE KIND OF GETS IT
And before you know it, she's got it! As long as her cute little bum is naked, I'd say she's having about 85% success right now. Yesterday, she woke up dry, and she managed mostly success with only one small accident (she made it to the bathroom but I'd put some shorts on her and she didn't get them off in time) all the way until nap time at 1 PM.
Go Zoe Ann! Jed is excited because if she keeps it up for a week I promised that we could to get her some big girl panties, which I think is totally uninteresting to her but Jed is so excited about it he dances in place just thinking about it. "Zoe Ann's a BIG girl!" he crowed. And I suppose it's true.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

A Visit to the Orchard

This year, instead of preschool, we are doing "Friday FunDay" where we invite a bunch of friends with preschool/toddler aged kids to come with us on a fun activity. I've been surprised how popular it is and we usually have 20-25 moms and kids show up.  This past Friday I set up a visit to a local orchard where we get our CSA. The weather was warm and beautiful and we had the most marvelous time.

Jed has a little buddy named Sophia who just moved into town from Connecticut. They are inseperable lately, so since I forgot a camera I asked her mom to send me some photos, and she did! They are so darling!

Jed and Sophia running in the corn maze.

Running!  My philosophy is that when the weather is nice we should spend every FunDay doing as much running as possible.
Holding hands.  He's such the ladies man.


Discussing which pumpkin we should take home.  By the end of the day, Jed had made a heap of pumpkins in front of our car, one for each member of the family and sorted by size.  He did a pretty great job, actually, we ended up getting all but one (I demanded the right to pick my own pumpkin!)

See saw and 'wing! (as Zoe would put it.)
We took a hayride through the orchard.  When the tractor pulled up with the trailer Jed came tearing around the corner to where I was sitting, screeching with delight.  I think his voice went up about three octaves.  He was the FIRST in line to get onboard!  And he was a big boy, he climbed the ladder on and of all by himself, a fact he was proud enough to recall and report to his dad later that evening

All of us on board.  Zane wasn't quite as thrilled but he was his usual quiet peaceful little self.

Zoe learning about peach trees and where the flowers come from. 

A whole gaggle of tiny girls in pink shirts attended this activity, and she kept running off with the pack of them (me: Has anyone seen Zoe?  Someone: Yeah, I saw her run into the corn maze. Oh, great. A few minutes later she came running out, red cheeked and giggling with a group of little girls and, fortunately, another mom who is better at keeping track of pink toddlers than I am.)  By the end of the day, her cheeks and face were so red it looked like she was going to pass out from too much fun and sun!

PS - If you are a local friend and would like to come with us on Friday FunDay, just let me know!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Smiley

video