Sunday, May 31, 2009

PHOTOS







Thursday, May 28, 2009

OH, BENITO

I know my posts have been all about my kids lately, but that's what I'm swimming in these days, and really, my buddy is stinkin' hilarious at this stage of life, so here are some things Bennett James is up to:

1) He used the potty for the first time a few days ago (Sunday). He'd just gotten in from outside and had "the look." He dribbled a little before I said, "Oh, no! Let's go use the potty!" So he STOPPED himself (which amazed me) and ran to his little potty. He sat on it, but I wasn't expecting anything because he's done that before and nothing has come of it. But this time I told him he could wear his Lightning McQueen underwear if he went (we'd picked it out the day before). I was shocked that it actually worked, and we got some ADORABLE pictures of him in his big boy underpants - seriously, there's NOTHING cuter than a little boy in little boy briefs, especially if that little boy has a ghetto booty, a buddha belly, and a nice little strut all rolled into one - hee :) THEN he was eating a snack at the table and said "Oh!" with "the look." I asked him if he needed to go potty. He said "Yes!" and jumped down off the chair and ran to the potty, where he proceeded to go all by himself with no prompting from me. I was PUMPED. I know we've got a long road to haul, but I was excited about all of this since he's never gone before. This morning I asked him if he wanted to use the potty or wear a diaper. He opted for the diaper, so I strapped it on. I'm NOT going to battle this kid. He's strong-willed like BOTH his parents, and I figure we'll get it all worked out when he's ready.

2) This kid must be going through some kind of weird growth-spurt that makes him clumsy because he falls down ALL. THE. TIME. Three different incidents in the past week have resulted in injuries, one of which was slightly serious. The first was a big fat leg scrape. Crying, hugs, kisses, all better. The next happened at church. The boy ran right smack into the door in his classroom and scraped/bruised his cheek up pretty good. Silly goose. And then on Memorial Day he was running to the back door to go outside when he tripped and fell and connected his forehead right on the lowest door hinge, full force. Michael wasn't home at the time and there was blood running down his face - fantastic. I ran him to the bathroom and leaned his screaming little head over the sink while I washed him up. I must be some kinda woman cause we avoided getting blood on the floors or anywhere other than a tiny bit on his sleeve, and down his face, which I got cleaned up pretty quick. We thought at first that it might need stitches, but instead discovered that that "New Skin" stuff is pretty rockin' awesome. He's healing up quite nicely. Needless to say, we've now implemented a "no running inside" policy, which he can recite quite well, but struggles a bit in the follow-up :) Ah, little boys!

3) My kid is gonna be stylin' and profilin' at the water park this summer, that's all I've got to say. He's at the age now where he actually has preferences and picks out things for himself, including his swimsuit this year :) I've told you how the boy is obsessed with flags - guess what they just happened to have at Target? A FLAG bathing suit! Bennett could hardly contain himself and his excitement when he saw it. I held up the flag design and another one I thought was super cute to let him choose, but I already knew which one it would be :) It's not the cutest suit I've ever seen, but it's funny how much I love seeing him wear the silly thing because he picked it and he loves it so much. Man, I love being a mom, and it just gets sweeter and sweeter the older they get.

4) Some funny things he says these days:
"I'm so funny!"
He recites rules for different situations, depending on where we are, then promptly breaks them.
"Good job, Bennett!" (says this for me or Michael when we don't say it fast enough)
"Turn the music up LOUD, mommy!"
"He has Shimmy-Shake hair." (pointing to random males with longer, dark hair)
"I love you, Baby Jasper!" (in a REALLY high, piercing "baby" voice)
"Jasper is sad. I'll hold his hand."
He calls monkeys "muminks", tomatoes "masatos", Jasper is "Baby Jasser"
"I'm sorry, Mommy." (he says this for me when I don't say it fast enough after I've used a not-so-nice tone toward someone else while driving because I've explained to him that Mommy shouldn't get so frustrated at other drivers and I should always be nice to others...this little reminder from the back seat happens frequently - my buddy helps me mind my p's and q's :) )

5) For a few days in a row, before getting Bennett up from a nap or from sleeping at night, we'd hear him making strange noises. The first time this happened, it was a LOUD banging noise. We go in to find that he'd figured out a way to reach down through the crib slats and grab blocks from a bucket next to his crib and was banging on the walls and the railings with them. The next time, I go in to find him "reading" his books in bed (a bucket of books is on the other side of his crib). He's also ripped a page out *sigh* of one of the books and says, "Uh-oh, Mommy. I broke it," as soon as I walk in. The last time I go in to find another big bucket of foam letters actually IN the crib with him, and the letters are scattered all over his room. Also, lately when I've gone in to get him in the morning, he automatically swings his leg over the crib to "help" me get him out. Needless to say, we will be converting his crib to a toddler bed this weekend (because he's obviously ready), and having a LONG talk about what the bed rules are :) (and probably a purging of the toys in his room until he can resist temptation).


And that's what my precious little mess has been up to over the past couple of weeks. Whew! He's been busy, so I have been too, by default. I'll say it again: I love this kid!

Friday, May 22, 2009

FIRST VERSE

I was inspired by Kristen C.'s posts about her kiddos memorizing scripture, and have just recently begun to feel like Bennett would understand and have the ability to do this, so we started at the beginning of this week with his very first memory verse. I'm a firm believer that memorizing scripture is so valuable to the Christian walk and to our relationships with God (though I need to practice what I preach SO much more in this area), and I'm hoping to instill this in my boys at an early age. His daddy and I are SO proud of him - I just kept thinking about how listening to His own perfect Word being recited by the voice of a precious toddler must make God's heart smile. Without further ado, here's my sweet Bennett, reciting on his own for the first time:


video


"In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth." --Genesis 1:1

Friday, May 15, 2009

TWO MONTHS


Our little guy turned two months old yesterday. Time is flying by. I took him to the doctor today for his shots (yuck) and he weighed in at a whopping 9 lbs. 9 oz., 22 1/2 inches long. He's a little bitty thing and I'm soaking it all in :) No worries - he's perfectly healthy and is developing along his growth curve like he's supposed to according to the doc. He started smiling today, and it's PRECIOUS!! I'll try to catch a picture of it soon. He's also "talking" a little - making little noises, and that's adorable, too. Jasper is our little cuddle-bug. He loves to be held, and if he has his paci and his mommy, he's the most content baby you've ever seen. Something we were especially excited about is when he started sleeping through the night at 8 weeks old. Michael and I work HARD to keep our little buddies on a schedule and to keep things organized and predictable. This makes a huge difference, I'm convinced. I did a previous post on the method we've used, and it's worked excellently with both our boys. We're pumped about it :) Our littlest man is an absolute joy. Bennett just loves being a big brother. He gives hugs and kisses, gives me updates (Baby Jasper is asleep, Baby Jasper is crying, Baby Jasper lost his pacifier, etc.) when they're sitting in the back seat, brings me diapers, etc. He's such a good helper. Having a baby in the house has DEFINITELY brought on a big fat dose of the terrible twos, but we're all taking it in stride and adjusting to the changes :)

I've included some pictures from the past month, including the best Mother's Day picture we were able to get, along with Bennett's Toddler Program pictures. He was a total HAM!! He was singing and dancing and playing his pretend guitar like nobody's business. He was so proud to show off his moves :) Man, I love this kid! He's a little sponge. For family and friends that live far away, here's what he's up to these days: sings the ABCs, counts to 20, knows all basic shapes, including octogan and pentagon, knows his colors, knows mommy and daddy's real names, knows how old he is, knows his last name, knows where our extended family members live (Texas, Arkansas, Alabama), loves balls, flags, cars and swimming, has this funny laugh he does on purpose that we call his "Fat Albert Laugh," because it sounds just like him, prays for others (including all of his teachers and his toys most nights :) ), has begun talking more about Jesus (the other day he said "I want to play with Jesus. Where'd he go?"), can sing several church songs, and he still points out people who have "Shimmy-Shake hair." His favorite movie is WALL-E, he loves to read books, to color, to play with stickers, and now to do puzzles when we're inside.

Hope you enjoy the accompanying picture walk of the things our family has been up to over the past month!


P.S. I can't get the gigantic gap
between the pictures to close up, so
scroll down a little for a few more.
























































































































Wednesday, May 13, 2009

GOTTA BE KIDDING ME





Okay, so me and Randi decided to be adventurous, daring tempters of fate by taking our FOUR boys to the zoo yesterday.

We. Are. Retarded. Here's why:

1. We both had ridiculous mornings at home that indicated trouble ahead with incidents such as a table, chairs, floor, and toddler COMPLETELY covered in milk from his cereal bowl. Was he sorry? Nope. He was living it up, splashing and playing (that was my son), as well as a potted plant repeatedly being dumped into the bathtub mom had just cleaned (that was Randi's son). But what did we do? Loaded up our kiddos and came anyway.

2. Bennett and I went over the zoo rules before we ever got out of the car: stay with mommy and have a good attitude. He had those rules down pat, reciting them back to me and everything, but when him and his buddy Cason got together, it took about 5 minutes of being out of their strollers before they both took off full-speed down the pathway, through two sets of double doors, and almost out the other side of the monkey house. It took me that long to catch up to them, and the only reason I caught them before they got out the next set of doors is because I left Jasper behind in the stroller with Randi, and two nice ladies helped thwart the two little stink-pots' efforts. Randi and I were both sweating and breathing hard at the end of this little episode. Needless to say, they stayed strapped into their strollers after that...until lunch time.

3. Jasper was a bit fussy, which was unusual because he normally has a solid nap at this time, and he looked really comfy in his side of the stroller. But I kept having to try to soothe him with the paci or by keeping the stroller moving. I later discovered that he was fussy because he'd spit up a GIGANTIC amount of milk all over himself down behind his back and his shirt was soaked. He'd been lying in wet, spoiled milk smell all morning. When I discovered this, I felt AWFUL. And of course, I forgot to bring an extra change of clothes for him this time, so he went shirtless and
sported his muscles the rest of the morning - poor baby!!

4. The older boys went to feed the birds with Randi while I stayed behind with the younger ones. Braden (Randi's youngest) slept the whole time, but Jasper kept fussing after the shirt removal and spit-up cleaning. By this time I was getting pretty hungry and knew the boys would be too when they got back. I realized it was later than I thought, and that I was, in fact, going to have to feed Jasper out in the middle of everyone (with a wrap, of course, but I really don't like doing it even then). I knew I was going to get a headache soon if I didn't eat, so I scarfed down my lunch first while Jasper cried (nice), then I fed Jasper. While I was doing this, a random woman asked me to scoot down so she could sit on the bench as well. I looked at her like, "Don't you know I'm feeding my baby?" It was totally weird and awkward.

5. The boys got back and we broke out their lunches. I packed strawberries for Bennett, which was really smart (heavy on the sarcasm) since I also put him in a white shirt. Yes, he wiped his strawberry juiced hands all over it. Randi peeled an orange that she and the boys started eating, but then the bees showed up. HA! That girl can DANCE, no lie! She danced and ran back and forth trying to get away from one determined bee. She finally had to resort to stuffing the rest of the the orange in all of their mouths :) Of course, since the boys were out of their strollers at this time, they were running all over the place, selective hearing in full gear (which means Bennett didn't listen to me at ALL and did whatever he wanted - fabulous).

6. We'd had enough at this point and decided to take a leisurely trip back to the front gates on the train. Randi lost her ticket and almost had to buy another one, we had to unload all four boys, load our double strollers, get the 2 year olds to stay on their bench, chase down Cason when he jumped off the other side of the train (after it stopped), chase down Bennett when he ran off in the opposite direction (actually, the same kind man chased them both down, one after the other, and continued holding Bennett for me until we were almost to the stroller, since I was holding Jasper), had another man unload our strollers for us, loaded up all our kids, and walked out to the parking lot, where I had to walk a mile to my car, and Randi forgot where she was parked.

7. When we got home, rather than being utterly exhausted, Bennett refused to take his nap, and that was awesome since we were both in such a great mood (again with the heavy sarcasm).

Needless to say, we'll need to re-group and come up with back-up Plans B, C and D before attempting this insanity again.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

ROCKS MY SOCKS

It has to be said today of all days that my mom is amazing. I know everybody says this about their mom, but seriously. She Rocks My Socks. I can't remember a time she ever raised her voice at us or became impatient - if she was, we never knew it. Her ability to listen never ends (which is a feat of gargantuan proportions considering how much my brother and I like to talk about a whole lotta nothin'). She gives and gives and shows no signs of bottoming-out. When I want to know what I should do with my boys, I ask her, because I know that her wisdom in the way she raised me will always make me a better mom myself.

And now she's not only my mom, she's Mimi to my boys, and I praise God for how blessed we all are to have her. My boys will learn so many things from me because I'm following her example, and when they're with her, they'll learn even more.

God must've known I'd need someone like her to be strong, to be my best-friend, to always be on my side, and to show me His light when I felt lost in the dark.

I sure do love you, Maw. Thanks for showing me what being a mom is all about. My family and my boys are blessed because of your strength and perseverance.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

UPDATE ON THE MAMA

Next up after this post is an update on the boys, but it's been about two weeks since I wrote about the goals I've set, so I thought I'd post on how that's going.

1. I've lost 2 more lbs. in two weeks, which is a good, healthy rate for a nursing mommy, and that brings my total to 5 lbs. lost, 8 lbs. to go to be at pre-pregnancy weight, 13 lbs. to go to be at my ideal weight. Not bad, my friends :)

2. I have actually followed through and begun writing a book. I can hardly believe it, but I've already written five chapters - about 50 pages!! I think it's going to end up being somewhere around 350-400 pages long, and I like how it's shaping up! For now, I'm just doing this for myself as something I'm enjoying. If I just love it when I'm all finished, I'm knocking around the idea of sending it in to a publisher...we'll see. It feels really good to finally be doing something creative again :)

3. I didn't talk about this last time, but I'm really out of whack with major house cleaning. Straightening, dishes, laundry, etc. is going great, but the bathrooms, floors and other detail things are pretty rough these days. My goal for this is to start up with my rotation schedule again next week, seeing as how Jasper will be two months old...crazy. We'll see how it goes :)


And that's all for the updates on yours truly, for any of you who actually wanted to know!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

MORE THAN ONE

You know you've got more than one kiddo when...

**You've learned (or re-learned) to successfully hold and eat a bowl of cereal one-handed in two minutes or less.

**Your toddler sometimes finds you going to the bathroom while you're still holding the baby, and looks at you like you're crazy.

**You hear the two munchkins crying/screaming in the backseat and there's not much you can do, so instead you crank the music up a little bit louder.

**Your toilets haven't been cleaned in almost two months. Yikes.

**There is always a load of laundry going through.

**You take a shower before everyone is up and moving, or you don't take one at all.

**You can nurse and read a book at the same time.

**Only having one kid to take care of is a "break."

**You smell like spit-up, baby shampoo and toddler sweat all rolled into one. Mmm, nice.

**You look forward to when you get to go work-out, because at least you're alone for a little while.

**Your toddler has sprouted a second head and acts like some kid you've never met half the time.

**You feel like the world's most awesome mom when you make it through errands or the grocery store with no catastrophes or crying kiddos.

**The thought of getting a hair cut, going shopping, or going out with friends is somewhat laughable and requires extensive planning.

**The baby swing and the pacifier are your best-friends, hands down.