The Blog Returns with the Beginning of Summer !

I’ve decided not to let this blog die 🙂  So it’s back by popular demand…by the only readers…who happen to be the grandparents of my children.

I was writing about Christmas the last time I wrote.  Fast forward six months…summer vacation has begun!  Pat mentioned a couple weeks ago that he felt like the school year flew by.  I told him it was a little different from my perspective; being the homework supervisor makes for some long weeks.  And I just went through a stack of paperwork 2 feet tall that contained all the hard work of a year of first grade.  I also cleaned out a mailbox of email reminders and notes from Jack’s teacher.

After a week’s vacation in Ocean City, we are back home to start the summer routine, or the lack of routine.  We have a big list on the refrigerator of all the things we want to do this summer.  We have started the summer point system whereby the kids get points for helping around the house and after so many points they get prizes, the big one being a trip to Chuck E Cheese.  I just need to find that piece of paper I wrote last summer with all the things for which they can get a point.

The kids are on the swim team at our country club and started practice this week.  Their first meet is tonight.  Jack has been at baseball camp in the mornings and then gets a few minutes of swimming in after.  Casey is watching a show while wearing her bathing suit as I write…she’s been working very hard in the pool.

But so far, this week at home has been worse than the adjustment to the first couple weeks of school.  These kids are tired!  Casey threw a tantrum last night because I sent her to her room.  I can’t remember if she’s ever thrown a tantrum like that.  Jack got sent to bed without stories.  They both broke down crying at the pizza place because they didn’t have any mini make-your-own pizzas.  (The employees had no pity for my plight.  You make pizzas…can’t you make two small crusts and throw it in a box for me?  Seriously?)

And the questions!  I feel like I have two three year olds right now.  I think they must have stored up a school year’s worth of random questions to ask me.  Casey asked me this morning, “How many heads would it take to fill up the earth?”  What?  Maybe Pop Pop knows the answer to that because I sure don’t.  Are they 8 lb heads?  Adult heads or child heads?

Jack has his own stash of questions but then he likes to argue with you after you give him an answer.  I was telling him that the Arlington Baseball Team (where he is going to baseball camp) won the state championship in 2012.  He, of course, already knew that because he saw the sign at the field and he wanted to know when they would take down the sign.  I told him that they’re proud of it and they’ll probably leave it up for a while.  Then I told him about the high school near our house in Virginia that won the state football championship in 2011 and I said that their sign is still up.

Jack:  How do you know their sign is up?
Me:  I saw it when we drove by the high school when we were in the area last week.
Jack:  I didn’t see it.  Why didn’t I see it?
Me:  You weren’t looking out that side of the car.
Jack:  Oh it was on Casey’s side?  I thought it used to be on my side.
Me:  It’s on different sides depending on which way we are going.  It used to be on your side on the way to school and on Casey’s side on the way home.
Jack:  I’m pretty sure it was on my side most of the time.
Me:  It was probably about half and half.
Jack:  Well you don’t know if that sign is still up.
Me:  I just saw it last week.
Jack:  They might have taken it down.
Me: Okay buddy, you win.

I think we will adjust to this summer business soon.  Next week, we have no camps, just swim team, so I think we can have some fun and get some rest and start crossing some things off our list of things to do!  And I will get to researching the surface area of the earth and figure out how many heads will fit on it.

  

Chopsticks & Invisible Skeletons

A few weeks ago, after I put Casey in bed, she came out and yelled down from her room.  “Mommy!  Do you have any chopsticks?”

Since I was in the kitchen, I wasn’t sure I had heard her correctly.  “What do you want?”

She said, “Do you have any chopsticks?”

I was a little puzzled at this point so I decide to ask her why she needs them.  “What do you need them for?”

She replies, “For my lips…my lips hurt.”

“Ohhhh…you want chapstick!  I’ll bring some right up.  That’s chapstick, not chopsticks!”

——————————-

A few weeks ago, I noticed that Casey’s laundry basket was filled with all of Jack’s clothes too, so I asked her why all of his clothes were in her laundry basket.  She simply said, “Because he has an invisible skeleton under his bed.”

Yes, right, the invisible skeleton.

It was funny to hear Casey say it in such a matter of fact way, but I wasn’t confused when she mentioned the skeleton.  I had heard about this invisible skeleton.  It caused some bedtime stalling one night.

Jack can’t tell me how he knows that it’s there, but he knows it is.  He would believe nothing I said about this skeleton.  I told him there really wasn’t one there.  I told him if it was there it wouldn’t bother him.  I told him invisible skeletons are really quiet.  Finally I told him there was an invisible ninja under his bed and it would protect him from the invisible skeleton.  That seemed to do the trick for that night.

Apparently the invisible skeleton has not been dislodged from under Jack’s bed.  It no longer causes night time issues.  However, I asked Jack why he was getting dressed in the hallway a few days ago.  He said, “Because there’s an invisible skeleton in my room.”

Obviously.  Silly question Mommy.

Casey’s Eye Drama

A scene from the car –

Casey:  [Screaming and crying] My eye, Mommy!  I just poked myself in the eye!

Me:  Okay, it will feel better in a minute.

Jack:  Maybe she’s getting the red eye.  [Also known as pink eye.]

Me:  No, if she just poked herself then she’s not getting the red eye.

Casey:  [still crying]

Me:  Is it feeling better Casey?

Casey:  No.  Am I getting sick?

Me:  No.  You just said that you poked yourself.

Casey:  No, I didn’t.

Me:  You told me you poked your eye.  If you didn’t poke it, what happened to it?

Casey:  I don’t know.  I didn’t poke it.

Me:  [Silence.]

Casey:  Oh Jack, did you just see that Mighty Machine over there?

Thus concludes the eye poking drama.

Mother’s Day Weekend

After the Crayola Factory on Friday, we had more fun events to keep us busy.  We visited Uncle Matt and Aunt Kelly.  The kids played loudly until Brady finally woke up from his nap and could go out to play.  We went to a huge castle playground that we had visited last time we were in the area.  It’s about 8 kid-sized stories tall and you could get lost in there.  Last time we were there, Casey did.  She stuck to the smaller areas and played with Brady most of the time.  They had some monkey bars that she could reach all by herself and she swung across them without any help for the first time.  She was very proud of that.  She couldn’t wait to get home and try it out on the monkey bars in the backyard.

For dinner we went out to my father in law’s country club with Pat’s parents and Matt, Kelly and Brady.  We had a great dinner.  The table was beside the door so we could let the kids go out and play on the patio when they got restless.  Which was every 5 minutes or so.  The chocolate milk that we ordered for Jack and Casey came in a huge glass with whipped cream on top and I think that may have fueled their inability to sit still.  Brady is 20 months old and I forgot how fast a 20 month old can be.  My chasing skills were a little out of practice.  One minute he’s running toward the street and the next he’s running towards a set of stairs.  

Sunday morning we got up very early so we could walk in the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Mother’s Day Walk in Philadelphia.  We were walking to support Pat’s Aunt Kathy and another family friend.  I can’t remember the last time I had to wake the kids up before 7…and this was way before 7.  We sweetened the deal with a train ride to the middle of Philly.  Jack claimed it was his very first train ride…very different from when he went on the subway last year.

All of the breast cancer survivors were standing on the top of the steps at the Art Museum and it was very impressive to see them all up there.  They descended the steps and met up with their families and then everyone set out on the walk.

We had a couple of umbrella strollers for the kids.  The one Jack chose to ride in was a good 15 years old and sometimes the wheels didn’t always roll the way they should have.  I have to say how impressed I was with my husband who pushed this stroller the whole time, while hunched over, and not once did he curse…or tell Jack to get out and walk.  I didn’t tell him but that show of patience felt like a really nice Mother’s Day gift for me.

It was amazing to see the huge crowd of people wearing pink to support finding a cure for breast cancer.  It was also a little overwhelming to see how many people were touched by it and it’s only one kind of cancer.  I’m very glad we were able to meet up with family and make it to the walk this year.

After the walk we took the train back and packed up our car.  Pat’s Aunt Kathy invited everyone back to her house after the walk and we spent a great afternoon in her backyard.  The kids played, we got to visit with everyone we probably won’t see for a couple years while we’re in Tennessee and there were tables and tables of delicious food.  It was a great get together.

Casey picked up on Pat and Matt calling Pop Pop “Bernie” as in Bernie from Weekend at Bernie’s and started telling everyone, “My Pop Pop is Bernie!”  She got a kick out of making everyone laugh.  Maybe you see the resemblance too…

Picture from last Easter.  In full disclosure, those are Jack’s sunglasses

After a stop at Ikea for a few pieces of furniture to take to the new house, a stop at the airport to drop Pat off, a drive through Widener University to find gas, 4 stops for the kids to use the bathroom, we finally arrived – exhausted – at our house.  At one point Jack fell asleep using a balloon for a pillow.  And they both fell asleep 10 minutes before we got home.  It was a great weekend and I’m so glad that we made the trip!

   

    

Casey’s Ambition & A Sunny Spring Sunday

In the car a few days ago, Casey asked me, “Mommy, how old are you when you’re a grownup?”

I said, “18…Well, somewhere between 18 and 25.”  Then I asked her if she wanted to be a grownup and she said she did.  
When I asked her why she wanted to be grown up, she said, “I want to be in the Olympics and win a gold medal in figure skating.”
We decided we better start with some skating lessons next winter.
——————————————
Today was a beautiful Sunday so I grabbed the big camera tried to capture a little bit of the fun the kids were having outside.  I thought I would get some impromptu shots but everyone wanted to pose today.  The other little boy is our neighbor and he and Casey played together all afternoon.  I think she was excited to be the older child for a few hours…a little change of pace from being Jack’s little sister.  And yes, she was wearing two hats in most of these pictures.

Playing with Photo Booth

I just spent way too much time trying to figure out how to upload photos to blogger from iPhoto on my new computer.  Sadly I think it was exactly the same way I used to but I didn’t scroll down enough to see the Media button that I needed.  But now I don’t have it in me to write the post I was going to so I’ll prove that I can upload photos.
There is a fun Photo Booth program (app?) on our computer that lets you take all kinds of fun pictures.  Jack, Casey and I have had a blast in the last couple days taking funny pictures of ourselves.  Finding something that makes all three of us laugh hysterically is pretty great…something I should remember to do on those days that aren’t going so well!
 So we have my alien children…

The chipmunk family…

I think we are a frog family here…

This one is called blockhead but I’m going to say it transforms us into Klingons pretty well.  Just need a few more ridges in our foreheads…

This is the mirror function.  Jack worked pretty hard to position himself just right so he has three eyes, two noses and one mouth!

The kids think the mirror is pretty funny but I like this picture because I think it captured how much fun we were having…
 

Today’s Funnies

Casey coughs.  She says, “Jack do you want some of my germs?”

Jack says, “No thanks, I’m fine with the ones I have.”

“Whose do you have?”, Casey asks.

Jack responds, “I got these from Nana.”

Just a matter of fact conversation on the way home from school today…like germs are clothes or something.  I don’t usually give a lot of thought to germs and they don’t come up in normal conversations but when the kids are sick I mention them and tell them they should try not to share them.  Now Jack is very aware of Casey’s germs and he tries to stay away from them as much as possible.  She lavishes them on him anyway 🙂

————-

Casey got a tiny little porcelain doll from the treasure chest at school today.  (She loves Fridays at school.)  While we were at Subway for lunch she said, “This is a Russian doll.”  I asked her what she meant and she just keeps calling it the Russian doll.  Jack claims that an episode of Dora showed the Russian dolls that nest inside each other.  I’m not sure how Casey connected the two or if she even did.  But the Russian doll is hanging out with the princess royalty at the castle now and I think she’s enjoying her new home.