Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Season of Giving

Mitchell loves his school friends. He finally prefers some of them to adults.

Lately, he has been excited about giving them special gifts. He has quite a bit of time after Jack has gone to bed and before Ben gets home to plan who gets what and what he will give each day. Most times, he just draws them a picture, puts their name on it, folds it up tightly, puts it in an envelop (which also needs their name on it), and carries it to the park, where all his friends are also waiting for their older siblings to get out of school. Last week, he even handed out some of my extra Christmas cards.

Sometimes though, he is in a more generous mood and he digs through his multiple treasure boxes, looking for something that is special enough to be a gift, but not so special that he can't part with it. Sometimes, not wanting to part with a jewel or sharp stick or old belt buckle, he makes a treasure out of something normally not considered one.

Today, one friend gets a tongue depressor, another gets a rock. Merry Christmas, best friends! You can cross "rock" off your Christmas list!

To be fair to my thoughtful boy, he did write their names on their gifts. He also drew a knife on the tongue depressor and a picture of himself and his friend on the smooth rock. Judging by these same friends' reactions to the earlier pictures, I think they're gonna like these...

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Late Night Discussions

My boys stayed up later than Matt and I did last night. The excitement over their first sleep-over was just too high to wind down and I drifted off to sleep hearing them still going strong in their room.

Before I gave up trying to wait them out, I tiptoed down the hall to spy on them, just to make sure no one had a sleeping bag on their head or were sleeping naked or all the lights on with legos dumped everywhere. One quick peak told me they were obediently bundled in their sleeping bags, Ben and Mitch on either side of their buddy, lights off (besides flash lights and light sabers), and fully discussing some pretty important topics that needed straightening out:

Ben: Man, I really HATE zombies!

Mitchell: Yeah! Because they chop your heads off and eat your brains!

Jake: But zombies aren't even real!

Ben: Well, that's true.... But if they were real, I'd really HATE them!

Mitchell: Hey Jake! Did you know that people actually EAT brains? They do! Not people brains, but cow brains! And hearts too!

Jake: Yeah! And lungs too!

Ben & Mitchell: No!!! You can't eat lungs!!

Jake: Yes you can! I ate a chicken lung! It had a lot of air in it....

Ben & Mitchell: *laughing*

Ben: But ghosts are not real either even though kids at school think they are. Man, they are so wrong! DEAD wrong!

I sensed perhaps the conversation was going to circle back here, so I quietly walked back down the hall to report to Matt and we had a good chuckle at the important discussions of our boys.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Doing My Part

So today I ditched Matt with the kids and after hitting up the gym (all by myself!!!), I ran some errands. One of these errands was to return something.

I felt great. I felt like I made some money, man! I'm pulling my weight, for once! I made $35 today!

I don't know about you, but I find it hilarious that I am proud of myself for "unspending" $35 and calling that an accomplishment! Perhaps I should overspend more often just so I can return it and "make money" more often!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Christmas Room

I know many of you love Christmas decorations. You love to get the boxes out as early as you can and for a month, (or more for some of you if you can manage it somehow) you love seeing your house covered from top to bottom in lights, flowers, wreaths, reindeer, candles, trees, fake snow, snow globes, santas, snowmen, and all manner of twinkly, fragrant, red, green, gold, and silver decorations.

I am not one of those people. I am, unfortunately, a bit... decorationally-challenged. I love to see someone else's beautiful home decorated well. I actually like tasteful outdoor decoration (when I say tasteful, anything that requires its own pump to keep it up is most definitely NOT included!) And I have a handful of items I love inside my house: a tree and my nativity set are the main ones.

But in my own home, most Christmas decoration is just festive clutter - something else to buy and dust and straighten. I, find myself cringing as I pull out the boxes thinking, "Man... where in the world am I going to put this stuff that will be out of the way, won't tempt little fingers to explore it, and won't tempt me to clean the house every single day?" And I have to put it all away again in a month!

This year, I found the perfect solution! We decided to put up our tree in a room that was formerly the "fort room." This room has not been used for anything really since the boxes were finally all flattened and stored. But we did some rearranging and now this room has some comfy furniture, a beautiful Christmas tree, and almost ALL my decorations! Christmas kinda threw up in there!

I love this solution because it gives us a Christmasy place to enter when needing a little bit more Christmas in our day. The boys love it because it is how they would love EVERY room to look!

We are suddenly moving our favorite books in there and there is now a bin of blocks in there. Ben does his daily reading curled up under a blanket in there. The ornaments on the tree have become their new favorite toys and they all have names and occupations and keep having tree climbing contests (the ornaments, not the boys.)

I am so thankful to be in this house and be able to have an out-of-the-way-yet-still-convenient room to make-over in this way. And I have to say, we are all having so much fun with the Christmas room, I find the decorations slowly leaking out of there and finding homes in other rooms. Perhaps the joy it all brings my boys is worth the inconvenience of clutter for me.

And candles really are pretty...

Monday, December 5, 2011


Jack is a lover of books, this I have talked about many times. But have I mentioned his growing love of my IPhone as well? I try to use it sparingly, but sometimes I have two choices: grumpy and/or crying baby because I have drug him to one too many things past his nap time and he is tired of sitting in his car seat, singing songs with me and looking for Christmas decorations, or happy, entertained baby watching the dang Elmo potty song or "Move It, Move It" for the hundredth time! I hope I am not alone in my allowing my 2-year-old to surf through his favorites on YouTube sometimes.

So he loves my phone. I admit it. I didn't realize his understanding of it though until today when I paused too long during one of the way too many stories I read to him. I paused for too long, he waited a second, then looked at me and said, "I wait. Just loading, mom. Just loading."

How many times have I reminded him to wait patiently for Elmo's amazing singing/song-writing talents to be performed with the words, "Just wait a minute, Jack. It's loading."

Apparently, my IPhone isn't the only thing that takes a while to load. Man, sometimes I just need a nap! Be patient, Jack! Mommy's still loading!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

A BMW named Mater

My BMW-loving 2-year-old finally got one of his own.

He cruised around on this bad boy all afternoon yelling "Watch out! Here comes the W! Here comes Mater!" Why not... Mater's a pretty cool character and at least he didn't name his car Moto Moto the hippo.

Happy birthday, my littlest big boy! So excited for you to be a 2-year-old finally!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Ever Changing Personalities

Remember how I told you Jack likes to be called by different names?

It just keeps evolving. After watching Madagascar 2 with his brothers, he has now decided he would like to be called "Moto Moto," or "Move it Move it" (because of the song from same movie.)

If I try to call him Jack or even cute Mooksie, he patiently (or not so patiently depending on my level of cooperation) insists I repeat the entire sentence replacing "Jack" or "Mooksie" with "Moto Moto" or "Move it!" then proceeds to sing his rendition of "Move It" complete with dance moves while demanding to watch the YouTube clip on my IPhone for the hundredth time.

These new developments are, quite frankly, annoying. I don't love calling my little boy "Move It." It's not even a name!

Perhaps "Move It" and "Moto Moto" are a quickly dying phase though. Just last night, as I was putting him to bed, he came up with a new one. He likes to say goodnight to all his photographs in his room. He says goodnight to the picture of a bird Ben drew for him: "Goodnight bird from Ben!" He says goodnight to the picture of daddy carrying him on his shoulders: "Goodnight, Daddy!" He says goodnight to the picture of himself: "Goodnight, Jackie!"

Then, he looks at the picture of himself as an infant and says, "Goodnight, Baby Jesus!" I pointed out to him that that was actually a picture of himself as a baby: "It's not baby Jesus, it's baby Jack!" Then he said, "I am Baby Jesus!"

Mooksie, Moto Moto, Move It, and now Baby Jesus. What's next?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Read It!

Have I mentioned Jack is obsessed with books? More so than either of my other boys at this age, Jack wants to be read to. We have books all over the house and recently just transferred some books from the big boys' room into his room and he LOVES his little collection! "Read books!" is one of the first things on his mind when he wakes up in the morning. He will bring book after book onto my lap and does not take kindly to quitting time.

Although he much prefers to be read to, he will "read" them alone if desperate enough. I often find him on the floor in front of his bookshelf, half buried in books, turning pages and reciting his favorite short phrases from them.

Now that we have company here, Jack has found a whole new group of people to read to him. He is constantly grabbing books and running for his favorite readers, yelling, "Read it!" while climbing onto their lap, invited or no.

Last night, he must have been unable to locate a book because he brought his jammies to his aunt, climbed up on her, and demanded, "Read it!" She did her best...

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Sleep At Your Own Risk

I am so thankful this is not me this time. Beware where and when you fall asleep in my home. You are likely to wake up finding yourself in strange circumstances: like covered in toy cars with a 35 lb toddler riding his trike over you...

Just Not His Holiday

Thanksgiving is turning out to be... well... not a great day for Mitchell. Do you remember last Thanksgiving? Poor little guy. He still has a scar there.

Well, this Thanksgiving has been a bit less traumatic, but no less pleasant for Mitchell. He started feeling sick on Thursday and by Friday, he was sick enough to sleep off and on all day. He had no voice and a raging cough and would wake up from a restless sleep with his throat so tight and clogged, he'd have trouble breathing and panic.

The good thing was that we were waiting to do Thanksgiving until our family all got here, so that gave him a couple extra days to beat the bug. Well. today is the day we celebrate and last night poor Mitchell was so sick and miserable, we were up late debating the merits of the ER.

He's still in bed this morning. I am praying for progress. Let's keep our fingers crossed that I don't have to put ER docs on my list of things to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Shel Gets It

This one's for you, Mitchell:


Hector the Collector
Collected bits of string,
Collected dolls with broken heads
And rusty bells that would not ring.
Pieces out of picture puzzles,
Bent-up nails and ice-cream sticks,
Twists of wires, worn-out tires,
Paper bags and broken bricks.
Old chipped vases, half shoelaces,
Gatlin' guns that wouldn't shoot,
Leaky boats that wouldn't float
And stopped-up horns that wouldn't toot.
Butter knives that had no handles,
Copper keys that fit no locks,
Rings that were too small for fingers,
Dried-up leaves and patched-up socks.
Worn-out belts that had no buckles,
'Lectric trains that had no tracks,
Airplane models, broken bottles,
Three-legged chairs and cups with cracks.
Hector the Collector
Loved these things with all his soul--
Loved them more than shining gold.
Loved them more than shining diamonds,
Loved them more than glistenin' gold.
Hector called to all the people,
"Come and share my treasure trunk!"
And all the silly sightless people
Came and looked... and called it junk.

When Mitchell and I came across this one afternoon while reading together, he immediately likened it to himself: "Hey mom! He's just like me! You think stuff is junk and I think it is all treasure!" Clearly, Shel and Mitchell are on the same page here and Mitchell is glad to have found a kindred spirit.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Super Pooper

The other day, the boys were all three down in the basement without me. They insisted I not be there so that they could have all the lights off. They love to play in the dark, scary basement with no lights on. I don't get it. It just makes me sleepy. So they know that if mom is around, at least one light has to be on, hence the reason I was kicked out. Fine with me.

Well, it turns out, they were playing super heroes. I forget who Ben and Mitchell were, but Jack's superhero name was Super Pooper! I remember it because it was a funny name, but also because he has now added that to his list of acceptable names we may address him as; as in "Super Pooper is hungry! Super Pooper want milk!" I kinda miss Mooksy, but Super Pooper has now become a bit more applicable actually.

Through no real effort of my own, Jack is insisting on using his little potty. If we are in the house and he has to go, he runs up to me and says, "I gotta poop! Need potty!" Most of the time, I am ashamed to admit, I tell him to just go in his diaper. I'm sorry, but I'm just not in the mood to potty train right now! How terrible is that!? The problem is that I like being able to be out and about for hours at a time without worrying about where the closest toilet is.

Well, mom may be dragging her feet, but Ben and Mitchell are all about this. Just now, Mitchell came booking it down the stairs to tell me that Jack needed to poop but couldn't get his pants down. "Come help quick, mom!" Sure enough, I got his clothes off and he proceeded to fill that little potty while Mitchell did the same on the toilet right next to him. After they finished pooping and having quite a lengthy conversation about poop, Mitchell dug around in his drawer for some old undies that he insisted Jack was ready for. I admit, he looks pretty cute with his Lightning McQueen bottom...

It must be nice to be my boys. Can you imagine getting this excited over pooping together? Perhaps I won't actually have to potty train Jack after all - I can just let my big boys take over this time! For now though, I'm curious to see how Super Pooper does in his undies...

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Lazy Mommy and The Car That's Always There

I am not a messy person. I like things clean and neat. I like the house to smell clean and I hate the toilet seat left up. I clean at least one of my toilets every day (I have a lot of toilets and a lot of boys to.. well... do what boys do.) My bed is only unmade if I am in it and I make my boys make theirs as well. I sweep my kitchen after lunch and dinner every day and even spent all last Saturday washing the entire ground floor windows of my house using a squeegee and a huge, shaky ladder and a very *helpful* 4 year old climbing up behind me.

That said, I am not a neat freak. I don't mop every day and sometimes I just can't (or, more correctly choose not to) keep up with the tornado of a mess that my kids produce constantly. I try. I don't always succeed.

I also take short cuts. I sometimes kick something under the couch that I know no one will ever miss and doesn't really have a home, but if one of my boys sees it in the trash, will be reduced to tears. I never leave the dishes undone, but my coffee pot could use a good scrubbing. My basement playroom sometimes doesn't experience a cleaning presence for days at a time. I may have a dust bunny the size of Texas under my guest room bed.

I also have a pesky car in my kitchen. I swear, I have picked this same car up a dozen times and put it away, but still it seems to live in my kitchen! So lately, I am tired of said car and am actually sweeping around him! I kick him to the side, sweep where he was, then kick him back again and move along. Am I just to lazy to pick this guy up again? Why yes, yes I am!

Saturday, November 12, 2011


I spend all week long looking forward to Saturday. I'm not sure why I so look forward to Saturdays though, because it is almost always my worst day of the week. I'm not sure what it is about a Saturday that turns me into a grump; perhaps it is the craziness with no schedule. Perhaps it is how messy the house gets. Maybe I have too high expectations of everyone else in my family for what a "perfect" Saturday should look like.

I should love them. No rush to get ready for school. No making lunches at 7 am. No rushing getting the right kid to the right school on time. Staying in jammies and drinking lots of cups of coffee with my husband. A long long run. This all sounds great, right?

And, knowing me as my husband does, he tries to keep things moving. He gets all the boys washing the cars or doing feats of strength in the backyard. He takes them to the track with him. We watch movies.

I still start falling apart by the end of the day. I need to figure out a way to better enjoy Saturdays. Anyone else get a bit crazy on the weekend? How do you keep busy yet still relax on a day with no schedule?

Monday, November 7, 2011

Multiple Personalities

We have so much fun with Jack's ever-increasing verbal abilities. Not only is it fun to hear the words he comes up with on his own, but he will repeat just about anything you ask him to. It is one of the big boys' favorite games: to see what they can make Jack say and what funny twist he will give to it.

With his verbal abilities comes more evidence of his unique personality showing also. He is developing quite the little imagination! One day, a few weeks ago, when I called to him by his name, he looked at me and said:

Not Jack. Name's Mooksy!

You want me to call you Mooksy?

Yes! Mooksy!

*lots of laughing and giggling and repeating "Mooksy" over and over again*

He now calls himself Mooksy and even talks about himself in the third person, such as:

Here comes Mooksy!

Mooksy is super fast!

Come get Mooksy! Chase Mooksy!

It is cute and we are all more than happy to call him Mooksy. As Ben pointed out, no one else has a nick name in our family, and Mooksy is fun to say!

But his personality is split even further than this, I'm afraid. The boy is also a tad obsessed with Harry Potter, so he also will answer to "Harry Potter" sometimes, if the mood is right. Yes, that's right. Occasionally, if asked what his name is, he will tell you he is "Harry Potter" and he has a "flying car."

I'm not done. Just yesterday, because Matt was away, I broke out my new Micheal Bublé Christmas music to listen to with the boys. No stranger to his voice, Mitchell asked, "Hey! Is this Micheal Bublé singing Christmas music? Hah!"

Jack tried out saying "Bublé'" just once and was hooked. For the rest of the evening, he was referring to himself in the third person again, this time insisting we think of him as Bublé! What kind of character is this guy becoming where he is a wizard one minute, a singer with a funny name the next, and a completely made-up weirdo the next?

Friday, November 4, 2011

Bouncing Off The Walls... Literally

Did you know a town can reschedule Halloween? Well, they can! They can, that is, if a freak October blizzard takes down half the town's trees and power lines and leaves it all piled in the roads while the residents move to hotels because they have no heat or electricity.

All that to say, we finally had our Halloween tonight, a week later! While I was originally annoyed that this whole thing was dragged out a whole extra week and tempted to just forget about trick-or-treating, I am glad we went. My boys just loved it and had such a great time!

Mitchell was an astronaut, Ben was Optimus Prime, and Jack was a kitty cat. He calls his costume his "kitty soup!" I assume he means "suit..."

We met up with Ben's best friend, Jake, and hit the streets. The big boys all stuck together and hit a record number of houses, running into a friend or teacher every other person or so. It was so much fun to actually run into so many familiar faces!

I brought the stroller to push Jack around in, hoping I could give him a lollipop or two and he'd just sit still and happy. Well, he was definitely happy with the candy, but it did not keep him in the stroller! He kept launching himself out of the stroller while it was still moving, tripping on his tail, rolling to a stop, then jumping up and running up to more adoring fans overjoyed to give him more "nummy treats."

Sometimes, a treat wasn't quite enough. More than once, I had to run up a sidewalk to retrieve my too-friendly toddler from someone's living room couch. He also kept trying to steal Halloween decorations: skeleton bones and skulls in the yard were his decoration of choice.

All the boys did great though. Jack was a handful keeping track of, but it was a fun atmosphere and was totally worth the effort of going.

But now, a couple hours later, Jack is literally bouncing off the furniture. He has been wrestling with a blanket on the couch for an entire movie. Occasionally, he bangs his head against the back of the couch a few times before covering himself back up with the blanket and kicking me repeatedly. Then he rolls off the couch, screams in laughter, climbs back up, and cannon balls into my lap. He is so wound up! I have never seen sugar effect any of my kids like this! It's incredible!

What a fun day. A day to pig out on candy, dress up silly, walk around laughing with all your friends, watch movies till late, and bash your head repeatedly against the couch.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

So It Begins

Although I love my rain boots, and think my boots lined up neatly with my little boys' boots is the cutest site (neatly is the key word there), I am not so excited by what this site symbolizes: the end of warm, dry weather and the beginning of cold, wet weather. Everyday activities are more difficult in the rain or snow. sigh...

Incidentally, I wrote this post a few days ago and didn't put it up, and now it is already outdated! This picture should have snow boots, rather than rain boots, from all the early snow we had dumped on us yesterday! The picture should look more like this!

Brain Injuries

Today we were releasing some extra energy by throwing balls at each other in a battle for the domination of the earth (the basement.)

Before you start imagining getting socked in the temple by a baseball or a football, I will add that these balls were all hand picked by mom and were all soft enough to be deemed safe.

At one point, right after I landed a sweet shot right on Mitchell's noggin, he fell over and said, "Oh mom! you hit my brain! Now I can't even think anymore!"

This explains so much! So many times, I have wondered why Mitchell's brain isn't functioning properly. We now know that one too many soft squishy ball to the head has caused some slight brain injuries.

Squirrel Food

Carving pumpkins is one of the highlights of the year for my older two boys. They love Halloween in general, but this is one area mom and dad participate with them and we all work on it together. It's just a fun time for us all outside in the cool fall afternoon.

This year, when I was talking to my neighbor about carving our pumpkins, he warned me not to leave them outside or the squirrels would get them. When he said they'd "get them," I assumed he meant they'd engage in squirrel-like activities, like picking and scratching at them. As I wanted the pumpkins to decorate my giant front steps, I decided not to heed his warning.

We all spent a fun evening carving our pumpkins. Everyone was delighted with theirs and the boys had already named them and adopted them into the family. We lit them up and enjoyed them for the evening, then just left them out on the back patio where we had worked on them.

The next morning, Ben took one look out the window and said, "Oh, Mitchell! Something terrible has happened! Your pumpkin fell off the table and is all splatted and he has no face!" Mitchell got a look of pure misery on his face as he surveyed the damage: those were some seriously strong and intelligent squirrels! They must be a super breed out here because they destroyed our pumpkins! They somehow took the tops off all the pumpkins and even took the tea lights out! Most were missing pieces of their faces here and there, but Mitchell's came out the worst. They knocked it off the table completely. The front, face part was just a big, gaping hole where there was once eyes and a mouth.

Next time my neighbor, who has lived here his whole life, gives me some advice pertaining to the area, I will listen. Although, I still can't believe squirrels could do that. I mean, come on... taking the tops off and taking the lights out? Pushing a heavy pumpkin off a table? I suspect it was something with a bit more bulk and more experience scavaging: raccoons...

Well, I spent all morning fixing our new family members and if you don't look too closely, you can't even see the dozens of toothpicks holding their fragile faces together! Looking back now, I think it may have actually be easier to just start over again...

I did remember to take a quick picture of them before their assault though, so at least we can remember them in their prime.

Happy Halloween!

How Did That Get In There?

I built the boys a fort today. It's raining. It's cold. What else are we supposed to do once all our responsibilities are finished?

Once the fort was built, we all picked our light up toy of choice, turned off the basement lights, and settled in. It only took a minute for Jack's aroma to fill the small space though. Always a funny topic in our house, we made jokes about it. I then turned to Jack and asked him, "Jack, what have you got in your diaper that smells so stinky?"

He looked like he gave it some serious thought before responding and shouted, "Dog poop!"

Cue the hysterical laughing from the other two boys who love a good poop joke. I have to wonder how that dog poop managed to get in his diaper though. Poor Jack. The cruel victim of a poop prank.

That's Mine!

Matt likes most food. He eats most things I buy and make and rarely asks for something I don't normally get, but for some reason, I almost always ask him if he wants me to pick him up anything special when I am heading out shopping. He always gives me a look like "Why do you always ask me this? My answer is always the same!"

Well, this week, he actually made a request: beef jerky! I think the most recent package from my parents (which always includes jerky for Matt) got him thinking about it. Since he ate that entire package in under 5 minutes, he must have had a hankering for more!

So while I was at Costco, I got quite a few giant bags, with the intention of rationing Matt by hiding some of them. He was quite pleased with a large stash of his favorite snack.

He was pleased, that is, until I informed him that all three of his sons love beef jerky as much as he does! I thought he'd be pleased and call it "dude style," but his first reaction was the opposite: "What? You gave them some of my jerky? That's mine! They're going to eat it all!"

Haha... now he knows how I feel when he polishes off something from the fridge that I just got!I know the point in buying food is to eat it, but I hate seeing it disappear so quickly. So I completely understand his reaction; it was just so funny coming from him!

Friday, October 21, 2011

No Dumping

We all have things that drive us crazy when it comes to our kids. One of mine is dumping.

I hate it when my kids enter that stage where they feel the need to simply dump things. A nice bin of Legos? Let's dump it in a pile! And here is a separate bin of dinosaurs! Let's dump it and add it to the mix! Oooh... puzzles! those would look better dumped out into a pile of pieces!

Play dates are especially stressful to me as it seems my baby boy is not the only one who enjoys this. I turn into the crazy, mean mom who keeps lecturing other boys on proper ways to play, trying to force them to clean up after themselves, or, at least actually play with what they have dumped out. Some kids really do only dump, but never actually play with the dumped toy. Like nails on a chalkboard...

My older two boys have tried it and learned their lesson. They no longer dump without permission. Sometimes, you need the bin of Tinker Toys dumped out to find that piece you are looking for. I get it. We do it. They also always play with the dumped toys afterwards.

Jack, however, is still learning. He still desires to dump his bin of dinosaurs out before he plays with his bin of cars. This was the age I struggled to teach my older two boys, so I have hope that Jack will quickly learn not to irritate mom in this way as well.

Am I not allowing my boys to experience the sheer joy of dumping? Perhaps. I just can't stand dumping for the sake of dumping.

What drives you crazy?

Thursday, October 20, 2011


It isn't too out of the ordinary for me to smell poop. In fact, I smell poop more than once a day! Usually, it means my youngest has done his duty and it is time for me to do mine.

So yesterday, when I was sitting in the car and smelled poop, I naturally blamed Jack.

Jack? Are you poopy?


Jack... I smell poop. Do you have poops in your diaper?

No poopies! Fresh and clean!

Oh well... Like it matters if he admits it or not. Nothing I can do about it in the car and a little stench never hurt anyone.

The mystery deepened though when I got home and changed his diaper. He was telling the truth! He was fresh and clean! Now why do I still smell poop?

I smelled it all day long, but couldn't figure out where it was coming from.

Later, I noticed a spot of dirt on my jeans. As I looked more closely, I solved the mystery. I somehow got poop on my jeans and didn't know it. That was the smell! It was me! I still blame Jack. At least, I hope it was his poop and not someone else's...

I love being a mom... I love being a mom... I love being a mom...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Just Imagine!

Mitchell comes up with some pretty interesting "what if" scenarios. Today, while finishing his lunch, he was contemplating a world in which his pesky mother didn't wipe or wash all the food off his face and hands after he so masterfully put it there.

After a sip of milk, (which completely covered his upper lip of course) he put some words to his thoughts: "Mom, what if we lived in a world where all wipes were sharp! And what if tissues were spiky?! And when you turned the faucet on, sharp spikes came out instead of water! Can you imagine that?"

I can imagine it, yes. I imagine your face would very quickly be unrecognizable from all the peanut butter and other food collected there.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Farewell To Football, Late Nights, and Port-a-potties!

Ben's last football game was last weekend. It's funny; it sorta snuck up on him. When I told him about a month ago that we were almost done with football for this year, he said, "What? Why is it over? We don't just keep playing all year long?"

Oh man... as much as I loved having him play, I can't imagine doing this all year long! Ben and I jumped into this with both feet, not quite expecting so many hours spent at practice every week. Ben was great though, and I dealt with it. He loved it. What a great outlet for him to play rough and play like a big boy should!

As proud as I am of Ben and all the progress he made, I have to give Mitchell and Jack some props too. Every hour Ben spent at practice, the other two boys spent there with him. They ate many dinners on the ground and got more bug bites than I could count. They dug giant holes in the dirt and filled their socks with sand to use as sand bombs. I wish I had a way to measure how much dirt we took home from that park. Mitchell learned the hard way that when you refuse to use the clean, flushable toilet at home, you are forced to use the "stinky toilet with no flusher" while trying to hold your breath, not look into the deep hole, and not touch anything all at the same time. They both made friends and ate a lot of ice cream from the ever-present ice cream truck. Way to be so adaptable and be there for your big brother, little guys!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Optimus Prime's Secret Weapon Against Man Stench

Have I mentioned that Ben will be Optimus Prime, the Transformer, for Halloween? He has had the costume for weeks now, but has been a bit lonely as an Autobot. As his trusty sidekick, Bumblebee, has had to only pretend to be an Autobot, he usually tires of being a transformer long before Ben is ready to end the game.

Well, for the sake of harmony (and adding minutes or even hours to play time that doesn't involve mom), I finally bought Mitchell a Bumblebee costume. He will still be an astronaut for Halloween, but I deemed an extra costume a necesity, so I got it!

Let me tell you, it was a great decision! The boys do everything as transformers together now!

The one downside to these costumes is the fact that they are not very breathable or machine washable. They specifically say to hand wash and line dry them. Lame. I don't even buy clothes for myself with those care instructions!

So what is a mom to do when her two crazy boys not only wear their onesie suits constantly, but wrestle in them? Febreeze to the rescue, once again!

I tell you, when I discovered that Mitchell was actually naked underneath that suit the other day, I thought, "this is trash now. I will never get that man stench out!" Ben wearing just underwear under his suit wasn't much better in the whole stinky, smelly, boy smell area. I Febreezed the you-know-what out of those bad boys!

I should be in a commercial...

Stinky Stockings

I have been shopping for Christmas stockings for years now. Every fall, I start shopping. Every Christmas comes along and I have, once again, waited too long to order them and we make do with old tube socks, the way my family intentionally did every Christmas (which is special in its own way.)

But this year, I finally found exactly what I was looking for for an AMAZING deal, and pounced on it! As they were going to be hand made and personalized (and I needed FIVE of them), I knew I had to order now before the Christmas rush began. So a couple weeks ago, I picked out the colors I wanted and ordered them!

Today, they arrived! I had almost forgotten about them, to tell you the truth, and when Mitchell came running inside with a FedEx box (he checks the mail 3 or 4 times a day for packages from his grandparents), I had no idea what was inside!

The moment I ripped open the top, all 4 of us wrinkled our noses and said, "Whew!" Smelled like someone mailed us a smoker! I would only have been mildly surprised to pull out a bag of smoked cigarettes!

Instead of cigarettes (smoke sticks, as the boys call them), inside were individually wrapped, personalized, and BEAUTIFUL hand made Christmas stockings! I couldn't believe how quickly she made these, how quality they were, and yet how SMELLY they were! I can't decide if I am pleased or repelled!

I'd share the link with you for how to order some of your own (that's how great I think they are besides the granny cigarette stench), but that smell is almost a deal breaker!

On a positive note, the boys had a blast using up a bottle of Febreeze on them. They are now hanging around on the front porch until they air out a bit. Will that smell ever truly go away? I sure hope so.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

I'm Right Here!

Jack and I get to spend some time alone together on school mornings. While sometimes I have no idea what to do with him during this time, sometimes it turns out so nice that I wish I could wait just a little longer to go pick Mitchell up at school.

We had a morning like this one day last week. The sun was shining so I brought a cup of coffee out to the front porch to watch Jack run around in the yard. He was having such a great time and being so good that I kinda forgot about him for a few minutes. When I looked up, he was nowhere to be seen!

Knowing he could not have gone far, I called for him and heard a faint, "I'm right here!" coming from the yard. I followed the sound and called for him again: "I'm right here!" Now the sound appeared to be coming from a large bush and group of trees. This is what I could see:

I see grass, trees, and bushes, but no Jack.

Now that he knew I was hunting him down, he just put his "I'm right here!" on constant repeat for me. I ducked down and lifted the branches of the low tree to see my little boy climbing the branches. When I asked him what he was doing, he said, "Riding cycle!" He found a low branch to swing one leg over and was having so much fun on his motorcycle that I had to actually crawl in there a while later and physically drag him off in order to make it to school in time to pick up Mitchell.

I do love that he has learned how to say "I'm right here!" and it comes in quite handy when I lose him. Perhaps I should be embarassed that I lose him enough for him to learn that phrase...


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