Sunday, March 17, 2013

Triblets Reclean!

Smug Dallin
 I didn't post last week cause I went shopping out of town with a friend all day Saturday. It has been my first time away from the family for more than three hours since before Dallin was born---and was very refreshing! I think it's really important to have time away now and then from everyone. Gave me a chance to remember not to be taking things for granted. I came home missing my family and bearing gifts for all. For Dallin I got this adorable little Sunday suit from Burlington Coat Factory. He looks like like a tiny portly banker and when he throws a tantrum in it--he looks like a furious stock broker--it's pretty funny!

One of the funniest things to me and what I wish I could literally record on a daily basis are the funny things my kids say. It's so hard to remember some of the things they say even though at the time I am thinking "I have got to remember that!"

Parking Lot Sandal Fest
On Friday I decided to take the boys to go buy some new athletic shoes. They don't have any right now, just work boots, snow boots and Sunday shoes. So we went to Payless Shoe and didn't find any shoes I wanted to get for the boys---but found sandals on sale....and what do you know---they had some in Dallin's size too! Now, Dallin isn't even walking so I know it's silly, but the boys were ecstatic to all be 'twins' as Eli exclaimed over and over. The cashier lady heard him and said, "Well actually you will be triplets!" He looked confused so I explained that in this case triplets were three people who looked alike. He lit up and said, " Exactly now we are 'Triblets'!" They were so excited to all wear the same sandals (although as you can imagine Dallin was pretty much indifferent) but as I was trying to unlock the door with baby and purse in my arms I realized Preston was frantically ripping off his shoes to try to get his new sandals on before I was done unlocking the doors. I started laughing and told them to go ahead and put them on. They sat down right there in the parking lot and put on their sandals while I stood guard.


 Eli is great at coming up with all kinds of interesting things. He says some things like 'Flamily (family)' and its so endearing that we can't bear to correct him much yet. Some other Eli'isms I love:
Funny Eli---(yes he is asleep with ear phones and a candy cane in....)

Hork: ie. "Don't just hork it down!" meaning scarf or gobble-up greedily.
Gigundous: "It was the most gigundous cookie I had ever seen!". It's a great mix between giganitc and humongous.
Waddle: " I know how to waddle Dallin now" meaning Swaddle.
B**** Black: ( first word clue rhymes with Witch). This one I had to correct him on eventually, but the first time I heard him say this, he was 5 and was helping me set up my class in the building I rent from. It is really dark in the building before I get all the lights on and he was making conversation with me trying to sound very grown-up and said, "Wow mom, it sure is b**** black in here!" I wasn't sure I heard him right so I asked him to repeat himself. Yep...he did. I had to try not to smile cause it was so innocent.
Drawling: "Drawling family near each week we'll keep love burning bright" (2nd verse of Home Can Be  a Heaven on Earth) instead of 'drawing'
Eli on the 'Running Machine 'carpet''. He loves it!
There are lots more but I can't think of them at the moment. Eli is just such a character! He is so earnest and really wants to share information with others--and never hesitates to use big new words he picks up--even if he isn't totally clear on their meaning or pronouncement. I love that about him! he makes people laugh without intending to, and I have to be careful because he is sensitive and if he thinks people are laughing at him even in an 'Oh how cute' kind of a way--he shuts down and becomes embarrassed. Very endearing kid.

Boys pumped up and rushing to help make Sunday dinner
Preston finished folding napkins 'Preston style'
Preston is pretty clear with all his words---he is a cautious by nature and likes to be sure of what he is saying usually. The time he isn't is when he is singing the Transformer movie theme song (by Linkin Park 'New Divide') He really cracks me up with it because it is his 'pump up' song. When I ask him to do a chore, within in minutes he begins humming or belting out, "So give me reason to turn me up, to watch mm memory reclean!" (The lyrics actually say, "So give me reason, to prove me wrong to wash this memory clean"). He also likes to sing the beginning notes which are a kind of this bass guitar strum building up which he voices as 'Down! down! down! down!" in a deep manly voice. My favorite is when he can convince Eli to sing with him and I hear both boys belting out the Preston version of the song which is the first verse and chorus sung over and over with filler words and murmuring sounds when he isn't sure of the right word.  Today he and Eli made out main course for Sunday dinner. Not feeling like cooking anything too complicated---and being a bit calculating I decided to just do twice baked potatoes and salad for dinner. I knew if I called it 'salad' though there would be whining so instead I asked the boys if they wanted to chop (using action words goes a long way!) some vegetables for me--any ones they thought would be good in a design-your-own-salad-buffet! I have learned if I give things better names and give them some freedom--they are so much more willing to do and eat new things. They started pulling everything out of the fridge---carrots, tomatoes, beans, bell peppers, celery---and a chopping session began with 'New Divide' as the background music courtesy of Preston. I tended to Dallin and watched amazed as my busy boys excitedly got all the stuff ready for our salad buffet. They even set the table without me asking and Preston even folded napkins (he folds them like paper airplanes and put the cups precariously on the nose of the airplane) for everyone (Mom---the rest of the napkin opens up like a billow when I do this, isn't it cool?). There is some power in that Transformer pump-up song!

(Yawn!) Ok, the night is 'drawling' to a close so I am going to sign off. I am off to 'reclean' my face and try not to hork down anything too gigundous before I get myself off to bed...goodnight!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Best Day Ever!

"We are so lucky! We got to have chips with lunch, we got to have friends and go to lego hour and get icecream and now we are going to have a family party---this is like the best day ever!"A direct quote from Eli as I drove us home (pretty knackered as the British like to say) after our lego/icecream playdate.

David has been out of town since yesterday morning. Friday's are busy work days in general, so to have the boys all day alone, it was even busier. The day flew in a productive way for me, but I felt like I neglected to spend focused quality time with my older boys. So today, Saturday, I tried to make it all about them. The boys do complain about missing having friends around, so on the weekends I try to have some kind of fun friend-time set up. Today I had promised the boys that they could each invite a friend to go with us to Lego Hour at our public library and then I would take them all out for ice cream.

After finally tracking down a friend for each of them, we headed to the library. Our library here is fantastic! They are always doing interesting classes and workshops, beyond just story hour---like how to up-cycle old books into art, or creating fun reading challenges etc. On Friday's they bring out these big bins of legos and invite kids to come play with them. There are hardly ever many kids there--maybe just one or two (the times I have taken the boys) so they really can just play and use their imagination to build fanciful transportation devices and buildings. I was toting my chunky little Dallin and I forgot how the promise of fun, mixed with four boys can combust like a tiny flame set to gasoline. As soon as we arrived at the library and all four little boys were together they jumped into turbo gear racing around the outside of the library building, climbing over the cement retaining wall in the front like monkeys. After finally getting them all back to the front door, scolding them and then guiding them into the lego area, they settled into play mode. I sat with Dallin, playing with him, while I listened to the boys excitedly swap ideas and jokes, claiming interesting lego pieces for their creations, and arguing about what kinds of vehicles and buildings they thought each other were creating. Eventually they became a happy demolition team of giants, destroying the little buildings and vehicles they had made so creatively with glee, amid laughter. Eli's little friend seemed to remember the mention of ice cream and asked me when we might to that phase of the playdate. The library closed at 4PM so we left then to go get ice cream. The shop I like to get it at sells inexpensive, but generous kids cones--- plus it was just down a couple block from the library.  After collecting jackets (it was not very cold, luckily!) we walked down. I say walk, but really the boys sprinted as I hollered at them to stop at the end of the sidewalk. I am sure we made several drivers nervous with these little boys darting around on the side walk, so close to a busy street. I'm also fairly sure we were an interesting spectacle to see....tired looking mother with frizzy hair pulled into a messy bun, lugging a marshmallow-y serious looking baby (he always looks SO serious in a new situation) trailing after four sprinting boys who were yelling and knocking into each other--laughing like loons. The boys picked out their ice cream flavors and I let them all sit at one table together and I sat at the next so I could listen to their funny conversation. A conversation between 6-7 (almost 8 year olds') is hilarious! They thought it was so funny to call each other 'her' or 'she' and were cracking each other up by deciding that their cup was a 'she' and the door too...and maybe their ice cream! And then Eli suggested they should make a club about calling things 'hers' and 'she's'!

The weather was so mild that after our ice cream, we walked back to the little town square and I let them run and play there while I checked in with the other moms, to let them know their kids would be home in a bit. While I was making those phone calls, the boys were playing in a huge tree that is usually decorated each winter with Christmas lights. They were ecstatic when they found some 'crystals' which were actually discarded empty Christmas lights---they weren't even actual bulbs, just the plastic hollow covering for a light.

Eventually we loaded back into the car (crystals and all) and I took the friends home. Preston decided his 'crystal' could also double as a musical instrument so we sang I am A Child of God all the way home with Preston 'doot-dooting'  into his 'Rhythm maker' as he proudly dubbed his new instrument. After we got home, Preston decided his 'crystal' could become part of his treasure chest of jewels (aka an old school supply box, mended with duct tape which holds, marbles, beads and some pennies) that he plans to bury at the coast when we go for vacation this summer.

We had picked out a family movie at a Redbox to watch for our family party and they were really excited about the prospect of our evening party together. Part of me had been tempted to just let them watch the movie together as I finish a good book, but I remembered how fun it was to me when I was little and my mom or dad would watch a movie or play a game with me (even though I am sure they would have preferred doing something else!) just made it so much more special. Those times made me feel more connected to them on a light silly level and made me feel like our family was not just connected out of responsibility and growing up stuff but because we also had fun together too. I had secretly gotten some popcorn and some popsicles for movie treats (which I used as leverage to make them eat ALL their dinner salad) and I admit I was as excited about the treats as the boys! After dinner and Dallin (who was totally exhausted by the hoopla of the day) went to bed, we put in our movie and settled in to watch it. We had gotten Ice Age: The Continental Drift and it was funny! We were laughing the whole way through in-between handfuls of popcorn and licks of popsicles. After the movie we all had to quote our favorite movie lines---bursting into periodic laughter until the boys teeth were brushed and they were in bed.

 I really do have fun doing things like that--it's one of my favorite things about being a parent. I love getting to do things, in the name of bonding with your kids- and creating memories. Holidays, playing board games, re-reading favorite childhood books (we are going through Beverly Cleary books right now) and just acting silly---remembering how to play in general are all some really great perks of parenthood!

 It was a great day. I know that they are precious--these days that seem to almost have a protective magical shield around them in the name of 'childhood'. Someday my boys' high chatty voices will grow deep and their words will become more serious. Their shoulders will become broader as they carry more of a worldly burden on them and their eyes will have a more depth as they began to experience for themselves what pain and sorrow really are...but for now their energetic, whimsical ways remind me what an enchanting world a child can live in and I revel in the fact that I get to be invited back into it from time to time. And when I snuggle up with two warm little boys leaning into me, laughing heartily ( and I have the peaceful knowledge of another tiny boy tucked into his bed for the night)...we are very lucky indeed!