Sunday, April 27, 2008

"Busters" on My Feet

Here is another fun conversation with Andrew.

Andrew-Mommy, these crocs gave me busters. They hurt.
Mommy-Do you mean blisters? Blister is the name of the owies on your feet. What's a buster?
Andrew-Piglet and Pooh have a Buster.
Mommy-Ohhhh....on the new Pooh movie. They have a dog named Buster, right?
Andrew-Yep, they sure do. (Sticks out his lower lip in his precious little pout). Not me though. I don't got no dog, I just got these red things on my feet.

Vote today!

My little sister was downloading pictures of her prom dress from my blog. The title "Blogging with Boys" was on her screen and a friend asked her what kind of site she was downloading pics from. It had never occured to me that someone might think that my blog's name was the name of a questionable site. What do you loyal readers think? Should I change the name to something less offensive? Any fun ideas?

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Wild Child

Andrew's hair after his nap today.

When I'm 33...

Andrew has a new favorite scripture story. He loves the story of the Savior calming the storm. (For those of you who are frequent bloggingwithboys readers, you may remember that the story of Joseph's brothers putting him in the hole held the previous title). We read it every night before bed and before naps. He knows what page it is on in the scripture story book, page 56. He has learned to find it on his own. Tonight I pulled out the hymnal and sang "Master the Tempest is Raging." He loved the chorus. We sang it until my voice was hoarse. After I told him I couldn't sing anymore, the following conversation occurred.

Andrew-Jesus stopped with big 'Snorm'!
Mommy-That's right Andrew. He did. The winds and the waves listened to Him.
Andrew-I can't make the 'Snorm' stop. I'm too little.
Mommy-I can't either, but Jesus can. He loves us very much. He will help us if we ask him to help us.
Andrew-When I am 33 and I am a Jesus, I will stop the big "Snorms."
Andrew-Yes, when you are 33 and a Jesus, you can stop them too! Then we will both be big together.

(As a mom, which piece of false doctrine do you address first?)

Ryan's Splash Bash!

Duck Cake: Take 2

Nana and Rachel smile with the birthday boy
(Aunt Em was at work and we missed her. She missed us too!
She almost quit her job so she could come. I am glad that she didn't. I'm looking forward to the free Blizzard hook-up next time I visit).

Ryan's big friends jump on the trampoline in the rain.

Bubble Fun!

Ducky Cooler

Not sure why they make rubber ducks that don't float upright!

Grandpa Bud came all the way from Florida for the party!

This time when Ryan saw the cake, he knew exactly what to do!

Our Lucky Ducky turned one and we had a huge bash to celebrate on Saturday with 30 of his closest friends and family! (We missed our loved ones who could not be here. We know you were here in 'spirit').

We played in his water table filled with rubber duckies, blew bubbles, and played outside in the backyard like ducks in the rain that lightly sprinkled on and off. (I am so grateful that it didn't pour). He received lots of nice gifts from his very thoughtful guests. He was very cute as he opened each card and pretended to read them. Ryan was his normal mellow self, unphased by all of the attention, just happy to be with those he loved.

Mr. McGregor's Garden

I have decided to try my hand at gardening. I've never really done much gardening to speak of, so I decided to start with one little 4 by 4 garden. I am following the techniques in the square foot gardening book that several of my friends have found helpful. I also have a neighbor who is willing to try this adventure with me, so we are helping each other get started. Andrew is very excited. I told him we were going to plant a garden together and grow our own vegetables.

Andrew-Like Mr. McGregor?
Mommy-Yes, just like his garden, only smaller.
Andrew-Will Peter come and eat too much carrots and hide in the pots?
Mommy-I hope not.
Andrew-We need a scarecrow. I think that would be a good idea, actually. That's what we need Mommy, a scarecrow.

Andrew said he needed his Mr. McGregor hat to help me in the garden. Then he told me he was hoeing onions. (Yuck)! Poor child he is under the delusion that his Mommy
would plant onions for him.

Watering the garden

Watering himself

Our little garden we just need to plant something(besides onions).

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Emily's Senior Prom

Ryan and I went to Ft. Bragg yesterday to see my sister Emily off to the prom. Isn't she gorgeous?

Friday, April 11, 2008

Ryan is One!

Ryan enjoyed his first piece of cake.

And his first bite of ice cream.

More cake fun!

"Do you know I am eating cake?"

The before picture:
Ryan's first birthday cake...Mommy's first character cake on her own.

Ryan loves his birthday present.

Chad took the day off from work and we celebrated Ryan all day long! In the morning we opened presents. Ryan got a rocket and bubble blower from Mommy and Daddy and Andrew. We went to the park to play and for a picnic in the morning. He had a lot of fun playing ball and riding on his rocket at the park. After naps we had Ryan's pictures taken at a picture studio and then we went out to dinner. Our last stop was at Cold Stone for Ryan's first taste of ice cream. He loved it, of course! We ended the birthday at home with a cake I made. I made a pumpkin cake in a 3 D pan in the shape of a duck. It was really yummy, and really moist, a little too moist I guess. When I took it out of the pan, it split into two pieces, making it impossible to stand up. So I decorated it on its side. We sang "Happy Birthday" and then gave Ryan the beak. He had great fun with the cake and kept looking at us with this little sneaky grin, like he was getting away with something.

The rest of the post is just me writing about how much I adore my little Ry-guy. Feel free to skip! It is sappy so you are forewarned.

My little darling turned one year old today. It has gone by way too quickly. I felt like with my first child, I was able to savor every moment and that I had all the time in the world. It is different with Ryan. I feel like there is never enough time to just sit and stare at him, to ponder about his past and future. I secretly get excited when he wakes up from his afternoon naps early so that there is time for just the two of us. (I get this alone time with Andrew everyday when Ryan takes his morning nap). Ryan is such a joy to have in our home. He is happy and sweet and giggly. He can say Mommy, Daddy, Hi, Ball, Cracker, and Bath. He isn't walking yet, but climbs the stairs and comes down them with ease. He can roll a ball and score a basket. He signs dog, more, milk, ball, and want. He has one little tooth that has broken through. His favorite foods seem to be crackers, cheese, and grapes. (sliced and peeled of course). His favorite toys are balls and cars and the bath tub.. He is perfectly average in his height and wears size 12 month clothing on his 1 year birthday. He is a great napper and has recently started sleeping through the night without nursing! HOORAY! He is very flexible and plays well by himself. He can climb up the ladder of the slide and turn around backwards and slide down the slide all by himself. But in case someone thinks he is perfect, I will add his only two faults that I can think of. He does like to rip pages in books and much to Andrew's dismay utterly destroy train tracks.

Ryan has added so much to our family and we are blessed that Heavenly Father chose us to be his family. He was worth the wait!

Elephants, Baboons, and Buses

Grandma Mary won't be in the country for Ryan's first birthday party, so she went with us to the zoo this week for an early celebration. Aunt Emily, Masen, and Madylen joined us as well. Ryan really liked the baboons and opening presents. Andrew and Masen discovered some really fun rocks to climb. Then Andrew decided that jumping off of them would be really fun.It was really fun until he fell and slit his finger and bruised his bum. It is still sore a few days later. When we were leaving, I asked Andrew what his favorite thing at the zoo. "I like riding the bus," he replied. Not the baboons, not the lions, not the fun playground at the zoo, but the bus. "Why did you like the bus?" I inquired. "Well, when we were on the bus, we saw the train that they use in the summertime." Of course! I asked him which animal was his favorite, then he replied the elephants. Poor elephants, how can they possibly compete with seeing a zoo tram outside the window of a bus.

It's all fun until someone gets hurt.

These guys are funny, Mommy.

"Thanks, what do I do with it?"

Don't worry Ryan, we'll help you.

Grandma reads Ryan his gift.

Andrew's First Swim Lesson

I like to say that everything Andrew does, he does enthusiastically. He plays, dances, sings, hugs, and even sleeps with great energy. He is a happy little guy (if not a terribly calm one). Well his first swim lesson was no different. He is the youngest in his class, but the most fearless. He jumped right in the pool (surprisingly waiting until the teacher asked him) and blew bubbles and stuck his face right in the water. He kicked his legs and splashed and made bigger waves then any of the other children when they played "Red Light, Green Light." This would have been fantastic, except the other three children in his group were afraid of the water and didn't want to get wet. (Andrew didn't splash them on purpose, but he kicked his legs really hard like he was told to and probably made the experience unpleasant for the poor things). The swim teacher said he did really well and that she wanted Andrew to splash big, but I do not think the other three kids or their parents appreciated Andrew's 'enthusiasm.' Oh well, I don't think we have to worry about being invited over for any play dates with these kids. (LOL)

Conference and cookies

We went to Pinehurst on Saturday so Chad could to see his mom before she went back to Switzerland. (The rest of our family got to see her other times as well). Here is a cute pic of her making cookies with Andrew.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Children's Museum

We went to the Winston-Salem Children's Museum with the Westbrooks on the last day of Hero's Spring Break. Here are the pictures of the fun day we had together!

R is for Ry-guy

Paddling the boat

"Cutest catch of the day!"

Serious Fishermen

Hero sporting her 'shower cap'

Andrew tried to climb the beanstalk, but isn't quite tall enough yet. Maybe two more inches?

It's Always Fun When Grandma Comes!

Grandma came to visit again from Switzerland and we had a fun time playing together. Alex and Evin and Aunt Emily, Masen, and Madylen came over, too. We played outside and inside. We enjoyed a fun lunch from Chic-fil-A. The boys are really at a great age where they enjoy each other's company and really play well together. It is fun to hear them communicate with each other. When they all climbed up on the trampoline Masen, who is the oldest boy by a few months, took the lead.

Masen: Okay everybody, sit down. (Everybody except his sister sat down, even little Evin).
We are going to play red light green light. When I say red light, you stop, when I say green light, you jump. Okay? Everyone stand up.
Andrew and Alex listened and played right along with Masen's game. Evin even tried, but Madylen did the exact opposite of whatever Masen asked, and giggled the whole time . Poor Masen, I guess he hasn't heard that "a prophet has no honour in his own country."

Happy Birthday Nana

We were at Fort Bragg last weekend, celebrating my Mom's birthday, which is why I didn't post like I usually do on Sundays. I want to dedicate this blog to her tonight! Please indulge me as I step away from my normal blogging about the boys and let me tell you that I have an amazing Mom! The rest of this post is just a lot of bragging about her.
She is such an inspiration to me! I hope that I can be as wonderful to my children as she has been to me. She has been an example of strength to me. She is consistent and trustworthy. I can honestly say that in my 32 years, my mother has never broken a promise to me. I have tried to remember a time, and I can't. She always keeps her word. She taught me to pray when I was a little girl. We prayed that we would be an eternal family someday. She taught me to believe in Heavenly Father's promises, even when they weren't evident at the time. Because I could trust in her, I believed in His power to keep his promises. Having watched her pray and have faith during her trials has helped me during the difficult trials in my life.
My mom is also the hardest worker I know. She is always the best at whatever calling she holds (I am not being biased, ask anyone who has been blessed to serve with her or to sit in one of her classes). She doesn't leave an event until all the work is done. She taught me that this is a gospel of service and that we come to serve not to be waited upon. (That meant we stayed and helped put up all the chairs and worked in the kitchen even if we weren't on the committee). :) She is also a rule follower. She abides by the teachings in the handbook and does not waiver. She clings to the iron rod. She taught me to be obedient to the prophet's teachings.
Yet at the same time, she somehow gave me the freedom to choose. I am not sure how she struck that delicate balance, but she did. (I don't have that parenting technique down yet). Mom allowed me to choose my own path, she allowed me to make my own choices. She would encourage me to pray, she would ask me what the teachings of the prophets had to say about the matter, but she didn't tell me what to do. (Even when I REALLY wanted her to).
I watch her now, as she faces her own challenges and still receive strength from her example. Her husband is in Iraq, and she is serving as the Relief Society President in a military ward where over half of the sisters' husbands are also in Iraq. This is a very special ward with very unique needs. She serves wholeheartedly, despite her own heartache and needs. She has two teenagers at home who are going through their own growth opportunities and she finds time to help them and comfort them. I called tonight and she was taking time to read two books of the Old Testament with my sisters to help them reach their goal of completion before the school year is over.
She is a wonderful Nana to my two boys. She thinks of them constantly and is always getting them fun gifts for no special occassion or sending them cards or patiently talking with them on the phone. (Which is a big deal since they are 3 and 1). She goes out of her way to make my husband feel loved and part of our family. She is the matriarch of our family in every sense of the word.
I love you the mostest, Mommy! Almost as much as you love me!

Recessive Genes

If one were to think of adjectives to describe Chad and me , athletic would not be among the top 10. (In my case it would not be among the top 100). If a sport contains a ball or requires hand eye coordination, I avoid it. Maybe it is because I got hit in the head with a softball as a little girl. Maybe its because I am really, really bad at sports. Chad played some sports as a kid, but his flat feet pretty much put an end to his high school athletic aspirations (or would have had there actually been any). He works out every day, just doesn't play competetive sports. When I was looking for an eternal companion "Guy who won't spend all weekend watching sports on tv" was an actual top ten requirement I wrote on my list that you make in Young Women's. It was right under "good kisser." My friends said he didn't exist. I proved them all wrong. (Side note...Chad meets 9 of the top ten requirements I set as a standard as a 16 year old girl. The only thing he lacks is ability to speak French). LOL
In 11 years of marriage we have been to one professional hockey game, one Wake Forest Basketball game, and two local Warthogs baseball games. We have never watched the Superbowl or an ACC basketball game together. (I am from NC, so I have actually participated in March Madness without Chad a couple of times). We have never even taken Andrew to a sporting event! (I know what bad parents). I have tried to introduce him to sports. We play with balls, I bought him a t-ball set, we play catch. He loves Wii sports! He will play if I ask him to, but he never asks to play sports.
The reason I am sharing all of this is because Ryan does not seem to be following in our footsteps. Ryan loves balls! Ryan especially loves basketball. He can only say six words and ball is one of them. He only signs 3 words and ball is one of them. He delights in the sight of a ball. He screeches and waves his arms in the air when he sees a basketball hoop. He jumps out of my arms when we enter the gym at church. He will help dribble a ball (even though he can't walk) and will put it into a basket. He will push your hands off of the ball if you try to help him. He will roll a ball and chase it across the floor.
It must be some recessive genes coming out. His Grandpa Bud played high school baseball. He is still on a softball league and has played lots of sports his entire life. His Grandpa Scribner also played sports. Hopefully he will get their height as well. They are both over 6 feet tall. I guess what that means for Chad and I are lots of weekends at sporting events. I have the mini van and two boys, so I guess there was never really a question that I would someday become a soccer mom.