Thursday, August 28, 2008

we love curious george

and we love each other
ella has developed some serious eye-hand coordination playing curious george games on the computer and bennett loves to stand right next to her and watch. every once in awhile, i hear, "ella, this one!" and bennett will point to something new for ella to do. they do quite well together sharing the chair and playing games. and yes, i do believe this is only one step above tv brain rot, which is why we have some limits and set the timer. i must say however, those 10 minutes go faster for mommy than for the kiddos.

oh, and pardon the barely clothed children. its still pretty hot around here...

Monday, August 25, 2008

who needs pottery barn?

have i mentioned how amazing my husband is? well, he is quite crafty too. he whipped up this cool magnet board for the kids this weekend. they love it and i am again quite impressed with his creative abilities.
ella is standing on the chair "so the scorpions won't bite her feet." we had a bit of a scorpion incident this weekend in the backyard that began with ella in hysterics, running to stand on the chair and telling anthony that the scorpion got her foot. he found the scorpion and killed it, but we were having a difficult time locating the actual scorpion sting. we were also having a difficult time determining if the frenzy of emotions was a result of pain or fear. well, daddy saved the day when he remembered the magic of the band aid! once we put the band aid on the "owie" it was miraculously healed. so, we are relieved either that she wasn't actually stung or that target makes some incredible band aids that cure some serious ailments.

Friday, August 22, 2008

my first black eye

compliments of my brother. no hard feelings though. it was an accident. he now knows not to throw his toy hammer at my face. boys...

Sunday, August 17, 2008

happy birthdays!

yesterday was a fun-filled day of celebration. grandma darlene's 80th birthday and joshua's 2nd birthday. and plenty of joyous chaos to go all around...

the kids always love playing together and the family always enjoys the times to catch up... and to remind chad that he is not allowed to touch the green bean casserole. i feel so blessed to be surrounded by such a wonderful family. love you guys!!!

and happy birthday to uncle jim in california. wish we could celebrate with you too!

Friday, August 15, 2008

teeth time

the name nastia is actually starting to grow on me. i'm not going to name my child this or anything, but i am quite a fan of the amazing, beautiful, graceful gymnast that just won the gold for the US. last night was not the best night for the girl's gymnastics all around event. the reason: it was so much fun to watch and so exciting to see the USA take gold and silver. and it was after midnight before it was finally over. not a good combination with an early, early morning to get us ready for a very exciting, much anticipated family outing. ella's first dentist appointment.

ella had a great time at the dentist. yes, it was a very fun place complete with video games and very cool sunglasses. i'm sure they thought we were nuts that we made it a family affair and also, when i pulled the camera out of my purse to capture these moments. the hygienist asks, "is this her first time at the dentist?" hmmm... is it that obvious?

i must say, pediatric dentistry has come a long way. i still have very vivid memories of visiting dr. j's office as a child. it all began with an incredibly long wait in a very boring waiting room with almost no color and elevator music playing in the background. they had one Highlights magazine that, i kid you not, was completely written and colored in and remained the sole source of child entertainment for at least 4 years. the same exact one. i always wondered why the wait was so long (seriously, an hour) and there was no one coming or going. what were they doing back there? my sister and i would both go at the same time. they did pass out stickers at the end. i escaped cavities as a child but angie, unfortunately, did not. my poor sister would often walk out with a sticker plastered on the front of her shirt that said, "i will brush better." who makes stickers like this?!? what a way to motivate a child. she still talks about this. it scarred her for life.

well, ella did great and her teeth are beautiful. and she is excited to go back again. next up... bennett.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

colds and golds

"nose wunning adin." (nose running again). i have heard this countless times over the last few days. poor little bennett has had a miserable cold that hopefully will be over soon and won't make its rounds through any of the rest of us. fortunately, bennett is now at the "please wipe my nose for me" stage instead of the "i'm going to let it run down my face and all over the place" stage. aside from a couple nights of not so good sleep, it hasn't been overly terrible and he is a cuddly little sick boy. oh, and he loves his other news, we have been thoroughly enjoying the olympics, even if they wait to show the best events way, WAY too late at night. but of course, there are a few thoughts which have arisen. allow me to share them with you...

1. when did the silver medal become the equivalent of losing? i think those female american gymnasts are quite amazing and deserve a little more credit for getting second place in the entire world. it seems to me the media (and especially those obnoxious sport commentators) need to back off and say something nice. you go, girls!

2. does it disturb anyone else that these poor chinese gymnasts are ripped from their parents arms at the age of three and shipped off to train to be olympians? i mean, isn't this like slavery or something? seriously, that's like sending ella off right now to train and seeing her maybe once a year. no wonder those poor girls never smile.

3. michael phelps is very fun to watch. its kinda funny to automatically expect not only a gold medal but also a world record every time he swims. even when his goggles fill up with water and he can't even see. yes, that boy makes us proud to be american. (as do all of the other superb athletes we have seen this week)

one final note... we can now add synchronized diving to the things we hope bennett never comes home and tells us he wants to try. i'm sorry, but those boys in matching speedos... a little too much for me.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

opening cermonies

we love the olympics around here. and we love the opportunity to put on our cool chinese clothes and have our own opening ceremony performance.

and of course, we love america. we live in the best country on earth. so... go USA!

Monday, August 4, 2008

some grammy and poppa fun

highlights at grammy and poppa's house:

1. learning the pledge of allegiance (well, at least learning to put our hand over our heart, look at the flag, and giggle)

2. a friend's garage sale where the kids scored all kinds of fun little treats (thanks maureen and meghan!)

3. date night. fun for us, fun for the kids, fun for grammy and poppa. (my parents were amazed at our children's ability to pack away the pizza. they can almost polish off a large pizza on their own. this is true. we have to cut them off before their stomachs explode. we are very serious about pizza around here.)

4. skinny dipping in the pool. (ok, well just the kids in the wading pool out back.)

5. ella and bennett slept in the same room together. we asked her if she liked that. her answer: "yes, it was fun. but it was sometimes hard to be quiet. i would feel a funny coming and i couldn't keep it in any more so i had to laugh."

6. i have always wished that bennett's hair was thick and curly so he could grow it out. instead he got my thin, straight hair. a little glimpse of what might have been:


we have a new addiction in our house. no, i'm not referring to ben and jerry's cinnamon buns ice cream which is incredible (yeah, i didn't think so either when i first heard it, but trust me). i'm talking about candyland. ella can't seem to get enough of it. we maybe played 80 times today.

ella's goal is not to win. actually, winning is the last thing on her mind. her goal is that every "fruit" person is drawn. and it doesn't matter who draws them or even if she draws plumpy, located at the beginning and i draw queen frostine, located near the end. she is excited either way. she even does the candyland dance around the room where she marches and pumps her arms up and down saying, "hooray! hooray! hooray!"

ella plays candyland with me, with daddy, and with any poor soul who comes in our house and doesn't have the heart to turn her down. she also asks for it during naptime and bedtime and plays with it before she goes to sleep. i have even watched her put the cards in her grocery cart and push them around the house. yes, she is obsessed. the other day we were playing and i noticed she couldn't stop doing the pee-pee dance and i was worried about an accident. "do you have to go pee-pee?" i asked. "mommy, i just can't even think about going pee-pee right now." this is one serious candyland player. (she did eventually bolt for the bathroom and fortunately made it in time.)

the other day, she was carrying the game around the house and asked anthony if he wanted to play. he politely told her he unfortunately had some work to do so he couldn't play right now. her response: "but daddy, how about just once. you can work after you get some game in you."

i love it. i love that she really just enjoys the process and hasn't yet discovered the greed of winning and wanting it all. i love that she is sincerely delighted with the good fortune of others. i love that when we are setting up and she sees one of these "fruit people" she excitedly hands it to me and says, "put this one in a good hiding spot!" i love how her eyes light up not just for "fruit people," but even for a single, plain old colored square. she is thrilled. i can learn a lot from her. i'm trying to apply her 3 year-old wisdom to how to live life... enjoying the big things that God blesses me with, and also what he blesses others with that i get the opportunity to be a part of. and not only the big things, but all the fun little colors along the way. bennett also likes playing candyland. his rules are different. i refer to this as "tackle" candyland. its slightly more violent and ends when every single card and gingerbread man is scattered across the living room. ella no longer asks him to play with her.