Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Justin's First Halloween

Justin was a monkey for his first Halloween. He grabs at things with his hands and feet - so we thought a monkey was perfect for him! Justin even loves to be upside down and laughs like crazy! He did really well and had fun watching all the kids. He loved being outside int he stroller. He did eventually get tired and fell asleep leaning cheek to cheek with his Dad. It was so funny because we watched him as his eyes got heavier and heavier! Then he took a nice nap in the stroller.
Monkey Justin

So cute! laughing a little smile for Mom laughing again big eyesattacking Seanfunny face in a tree where am I?monkeying aroundalmost asleepout like a light!Halloween pjs

Halloween 2007

We started off Halloween by going up to Brian's school. All the grades parade around the school yard and then walk a few blocks around the neighborhood. It is really neat and a lot of the school's neighbors go outside to watch the kids go by. Then they line up for pretzels and water bottles.

Next we went trick-or-treating! The kids were in a full sprint to the first house and then quickly off again. We could barely keep up with them! Brian lasted much longer than Sean did! Each of them filled about two whole plastic pumpkins! Yikes! They were so happy with their loot! I felt bad for Sean because he kept asking to eat candy and most of what he got was off limits because of his dairy allergy! Poor kid has never had chocolate - I really hope he outgrows it soon!

Firefighter Sean and Astronaut BrianBrianBrianSeanSeanBrian coming out of schoolBrian eating a pretzel to the side
because of his loose toothBrian listening to his friend ZacharyTrick-or-Treating buddiesSean and a cool carved pumpkintrick-or-treatingtaking a breaktheir favorite houseSean and his pumpkinfinally ready for home!

Sean's Harvest Show

Sean had a Harvest Show this morning. They were singing songs about fall. He was a little nervous and shy at first - but he actually did more singing and arm movements than I thought he would.

It was really cute and like I always do, I got teary eyed seeing him up on stage. I was so proud of him and it felt so wonderful to be his mom! Great job Sean! Click on the video to see him sing!

Firefighter Sean a little shy
pulling on his costume
(I had to sew the buckles back on when he got home!)
Sean and his friend Supergirl Grace
Sean singing

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wha-la Cookies!

Sean and I played the cookie game this morning. It is so cute. It comes with spoons that have suction cups attached to them. Each person gets an ingredient list for their cookies- peanut butter, chocolate chip or oatmeal raisin. Then you have to take your spoon and slap at the pieces in hopes of getting what you need. But watch out for the rotten egg - if you get that you have to put all of your ingredients back and start over! The game begins by saying "Ready, Set, Bake!"

So as we are playing he says, "Mom this game is making me hungry for cookies!" Surprise, surprise, surprise! So,I found one of his non-dairy mixes and we went up to make cookies. He kept saying steer instead of stir. He would say, "Mom I want to steer. I love steering." Maybe he has been listening to Bob Marley without my knowledge - you know "Steer (stir) it up!"

He had a hard time rolling the dough into balls - he kept getting a "hot dog." So he decided to make hot dogs and then "squeeze them down" them into balls. It worked great and he was so proud of himself. He kept asking if they were done every 30 seconds or so for 10 minutes!

Make sure you watch the video of him demonstrating how to make cookies! Don't mind Justin crying in the background - he is trying to fall asleep in his swing. We definitely do CIO (cry it out) in this house!

rolling out a hot dog

"squeezing it"
all done

Cookie Making By Sean

Two Thumbs Down

I watched a Lifetime movie on Saturday night called Hush Little Baby. It has to be one of the strangest movies I have ever seen, a little girl drowns in a river and the mom feels guilty. Then the mom gets pregnant on birth control. The baby she has seems evil to her and she thinks it is trying to kill her. The movie makes you think she had post-partum depression and then post-partum psychosis. The baby only does bad things when no one else is around. I think I only watched the movie because it was so strange.

Then at the end, they show on the baby video monitor that the baby was really evil and did get up and walk around and one time pushes the mom down the steps - all at about 6 months old! Crazy. Then the last few seconds of the movie have the baby up where the camera is on the wall. She is staring into it from about two inches away - really creepy. I wished I hadn't watched it but luckily had no bad dreams. I hate scary movies!

The worst part is that the movie portrayed unsafe baby care - even though it was made in 2007. Some of the things they showed were scarier that the movie! The first thing I noticed is that they put the baby in the crib with a comforter like blanket over her. Then when the mom puts her in the infant carrier car seat, she buckles a seat belt-like clip around the babies waist only - she does this twice! What? Then the mom is in the car driving and looks back at the baby. And what do you know - the baby is staring right back at her. The baby is a few months old and riding forward-facing!

Oh, and at one time the mom tries to nurse the baby and it bites her. She yells and puts her hand to her breast. She then looks at it and has her whole hand and wrist are covered in blood. It even drips from her hand to the floor! What a way to scare new moms away from breast feeding. For the record I have been bit before and it does hurt for a second. But none of the boys have ever drawn even a drop of blood - even when they had teeth. So unrealistic!

The other strange thing is that they live in a huge old house and the baby's room is up on like the 4th floor - so far away from the living area of the house. So, whenever they baby cries or they need to go and get her, they have to climb three or four flights of steps! I seemed to be in a trance watching this - I figured a movie can't be this bad. I kept waiting or it to get better and to make sense but it never did... Don't watch it - I expected better from Lifetime!

Monday, October 29, 2007

E-mail Virus

Don't open any e-mail form us - even if it says I have a question or good news etc. in the subject line. I opened an e-mail from a mom at Brian's school and it went through my address book and e-mailed people a strange message that won't open. I have noy sent any e-mails to anyone today.

I cannot find that it did anything to my computer except add a name to my outgoing mail. Everything is working and my virus scan came up clean. I will let you know when the problem has been fixed! Sorry in advance!

Sean Strikes Again

Oh Sean, is all I have to say and that I am not really surprised. We had talks over the summer about opening snacks and things and then leaving the trash on the floor or on the furniture. I haven't seen as much trash lying around, so I thought they had been getting the hang of cleaning up after themselves. I guess Brian is the only one that got it.

I was straightening up the living room this morning and saw a juice box wedged between the wall and the couch - it was lemonade and had a yellow lollipop stuck to it. I immediately knew that it belonged to Sean - it was yellow and Brian doesn't drink lemonade.

the stuck juice box

I tried to reach it but it was down too far. So, I innocently pulled the couch out a little. I just stood there staring at the floor! There was so much trash down there - I could have just screamed. But I was shocked into silence, so I just stood there with my mouth open. The really sad part is that Sean could have eaten all this in about a day or two!
I took inventory - 1 melted ring pop, 2 paper plates, 1 juice box, 2 juice box straws, 1 juice box straw wrapper, 1 half-eaten lolli-pop, 2 lolli-pop wrappers, 3 lolli-pop sticks, 2 used wipes, 1 pop-tart wrapper, 4 popsicle sticks, 9 half-eaten peanut butter crackers, 7 peanut butter cracker wrappers, 3 grapes that now look more like raisins, 1 hairy fruit snack, 1 ginger snap with a bite missing and about 102 pretzel sticks!
melted ring pop

the mess

close-up #1close-up #2close-up #3

I called to Sean, "Hey, buddy, what is with all this trash behind the couch?' He looks at me with those huge guilty eyes - I think his eyebrows were almost touching his hairline! He says, "I don't know. Maybe you should ask Brian when he gets home from school.." I say, "I don't think it was Brian because it is all the stuff that you eat." Sean says, "Let me see." He comes over to the couch and peers down at the mess and says, "Nope not me!" Nice try kiddo!

I am not in the mood to argue, so I go to the kitchen and get a small trash bag. I hand it to him and tell him to start cleaning it up. He looks at the trash bag and says, "Mom I think we need a bigger bag, this is a big mess!"

"I have to do this?"scratching his head in disbeliefgetting to workstill going"I am not touching that hairy fruit snack!"

As he is cleaning he has a lot to say:

"I could have never done all this!"

"I am not touching the hairy fruit snack!"

"I think Brian was eating some of this!"

"Daddy left some things too."

"Cleaning is hard work!"

"Can I have a popsicle?"

"Roc needs to pick up his fur!"

"My arms are tired."

"I hope you don't ever make me do this again!"

He did a really job cleaning and picked up every last wrapper and pretzel crumb. Then he looked at me and said. "Mom, I am such a great cleaner-uper!" I said, "You did a great job!" Then he said, "Now can I have a popsicle?" Of course I let him have one.

Okay, so these kind of posts make me look like a bad mom and an even worse house cleaner! I am really afraid to look under the cushions now! I don't even want to think about what he might have stashed behind is bed! This is the stuff that goes on in a house with kids - at least with my kids anyway! I say so what if my kid is a slob - he got it from his Dad! Notice he didn't blame me for any of the mess!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Animal, Vegetable or Mineral?

Hmmm. My guess is none of the above. Not even sure what this was at first. I was cleaning out from behind our TV cabinet and found the following things - a green army guy, a paper airplane, a yo-ball, a fruit snack, a Nerf dart, and the thing in the following pictures. Oh and a ton of dust - but I could identify that right away. Definitely not the first strange unidentified item found in the house - and with three boys and a husband, I bet it won't be the last. This one had me puzzled for a few minutes.

Can you guess?

A mutant clam maybe?

Do you give up? Okay, this thing was formerly known as a banana. The stem finally gave it away for me. I have no idea how long it has been behind our TV cabinet, nor do I really want to know. I think it was more than a few days or a even week, so after that I don't want to know. I think it may be a while before I can eat a banana again. Of course, the boys thought it was neat. It probably crossed Brian's mind to bring it in for sharing! I might be kicked out of the PTA for this one! Just kidding!

I am going to tell myself that it happened when I was in the hospital having Justin. That frees me from blame, But wait, then I have to admit that I haven't cleaned behind there in about six months. I guess I am stuck between a rock and a hard place. They always say - the dirt will always be there and one day the kids will not. I pick the kids!

If you follow this blog, you only need one guess as to who the culprit was ...Sean! I asked him why a banana was left to rot behind the TV. He said, "It was mushy and had brown spots, so I didn't want to eat it." He said, "I just threw it and it went back there." I guess he hasn't heard of a trash can yet? Ugh!

Mom said...

Sean came in from the backyard with a broken pair of plastic pliers to show me. He and Brian were decked out in, as they say, "worker guy" attire. Tool belts and plastic tools, gloves and work boots. I have to tell them all the time that they are play tools and not to be used like real tools. But, of course, they still try to fix their swingset or bikes and the tools get broken.

So, Sean is standing in front of me with the broken pliers. He asks me, "Mom can you get me some glue?" Well, the pliers are beyond being glued - and even if the handle sticks back on for a second, I guarantee it won't last long. I tell him that I cannot glue them and he gives me a sad face. I reiterate the talk about pretending with the tools since they are toys and playing gently with them. I tell him they are just plastic and will break when matched up against wood and metal.

I saw the next question coming. He says, "Okay. Can we go in the garage and use Daddy's tools then?" Does he think I was born yesterday. If they take apart the swings and the bike, I will never get them back together! I say, "Sorry, but no. They are only for grown-ups." I then say, "Go back out into the yard and tell Brian what I said about being careful with the tools." Sean says, "Okay Mom." I say, "Don't forget." He says , "I won't."

He literally walks through the dining room, maybe fifteen feet, and out onto the porch. I hear him yell, "Brian!" I cannot believe it and a smile comes over my face. My little boy is growing up, he is actually going to follow directions and do as he was told! Yipee! Then Sean says, "Mom said to tell you something." Oh, darn, so close. I should have known it was too good to be true. Oh well, maybe next time he will get it!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Why Babies Love Our Stuff

I was in the bath the other night - yes I have to take a bath at 11 pm in order to get any peace and quiet. Anyway, it is a good time to get some reading done. I had the October issue of Parenting which came in September! Good thing I didn't need any of the costume ideas!

Well, on page 156 they have an article called Why Babies Love Your Stuff. I always knew that babies seemed to really love things like remotes, car keys, and phones. I never knew why. I just figured they were forbidden, therefore sought after.

I remember when Sean was a baby - he wanted nothing to do with baby toys and rattles. He wanted the matchbox cars and action figures that Brian was playing with. He also wanted keys and magazines and cell phones. It seems there is more to this than curiosity.

Babies naturally mimic and imitate other people. You can teach a few month old baby to stick his tongue out at you. If you do it often enough, every time they see you, they wall do it in anticipation of you doing it. Brian, Sean and Justin all did this. Then they learn to babble and clap and wave bye-bye all through copying others.

Marisa Maeyama from Parenting says that babies want our stuff because they see us with it and think that it is what they should do. She says , "These are the things he sees you playing with every day. If the most important people in his life are constantly using an object, it must be fun."

I have three kids and this idea has never crossed my mind. I never thought that they wanted an object to copy another person using it. I knew they copied other things - I just wasn't connecting it to my cell phone. I find this very interesting and just wanted to pass it on.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Memory Loss and School Pictures

I went to bed last night thinking that I was forgetting something. I usually never forget things! (wink, wink) I did fall asleep rather quickly because Justin was up at 4 am two nights ago. He didn't really go back to sleep until almost 9 am! He was happy being held and didn't want to eat - maybe teeth or separation anxiety?

I woke up this morning and looked at the boys' school calendars. Brian - good nothing I forgot. And then I looked at Sean's calendar. There it was, nice and big - Picture Day! Ooops! I had been meaning to give him a haircut for the last few days! I let out a big sigh.

I looked over at Sean - Yep, he needs a hair cut. Way to long for pictures! But our usual haircut out back was out of the question - it was cool and rainy outside. Then I got an idea - I just love it when my brain decides to work - especially at crunch time!

I called Sean to come upstairs and I put him in the tub, I pulled the shower curtain partially closed so that hair wouldn't fly out all over the bathroom, and got out my clippers! He got #2 on the sides and #3 on the top. It was a rushed cut and not perfect but great for the pictures today. He only screamed part of the time and no blood - so all in all a good cut! I know that Brian Sr. thought I was crazy!

As Sean was walking out the door Brian Sr. said, "Sean let me see your smile." He looked right at his Dad, lifted up his chin, squinted his eyes and yelled cheese! Then Sean said, "Dad, that's the one!" while pointing to his face! Perfect, just perfect! The good thing is that we get to see the pictures in a few weeks before we buy - so no money upfront. I hope I am pleasantly surprised and that they didn't let him smile like that. If he did smile funny I wasted time on a hair cut because there will be no pictures to buy!

On the other hand - if he did smile like that - I should buy at least one photo to show him when he is older. Oh the ways I could embarrass him...

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Bumbo Warning

First I have to start by saying how much I love the Bumbo seat! And Justin does too - I wish they had these when Brian and Sean were babies. It allows babies as young as three or four months to sit up. Justin loves to sit and be in the mix of things with his brother.

Okay, so there has been a recent "voluntary recall" of these seats. Babies have been injured when they are placed on a high surface and fall out. There is no safety strap - if the babies arch their backs and wiggle, they can escape from the Bumbo. There are comments on web pages everywhere about people going crazy and returning them to stores! If you contact the Bumbo Company, they will send you a warning sticker. Here is a report from the Consumer Product Safety Commission for more information.

I think a warning sticker is a good idea. But, use your common sense people. You never place a baby on a high surface in anything - especially if you are not holding onto the child at the same time! Things happen so quickly and it isn't worth the slim chance. One mom said she was feeding her child on the counter and she looked down to get some more food on the spoon - in that split second the baby got out of the Bumbo and fell to the floor. The baby fractured her skull and needed surgery to save her life.

Keep babies down on the floor! No baby products are supposed to be on elevated surfaces - not infant car seats or bouncy seats or booster feeding seats etc.! Even our pediatrician has a sign up telling patients not to put infant carriers on tables and counters.

I will continue to use my Bumbo in the proper way and think it is a wonderful product. Justin loves it and it gives me a few much needed minutes to do things like, I don't know - eat once in a while! If you remember I did use it in the tub (which the instructions say not to do) - but I never took my hand off of Justin!

Speaking of the tub - there are also people trying to get baby bath rings recalled because babies have drowned. Again - these are not designed to secure your child and no child should ever be left alone in the tub and you should never be more than an arms length away from them. I did a search for this because I was having a hard time trying to find a bath ring for Justin. Luckily, I found Brian and Sean's old one in the garage! A little soap and water and we are ready to go.

He is too big for a baby bath tub and not big enough to sit alone in the tub - and way to slippery to be held in the tub! A little tip - if you have a bath ring - put one of those bath sponges where the baby sits and they don't slide around as much!

Does anyone ever have to say - Do not put a car seat with a baby in it on the roof of the car? Do not place Bumbo on airport landing strips? Do not leave stroller in the middle of the street? Do not place baby in a shark tank? Do not use washing machine to clean a child or the dryer to dry or warm a child? Do not sanitize a baby in the dishwasher? Do not bring down a fever by placing a child in the freezer? Do not let baby play with rabid dogs? Do not place baby on elevated surfaces? Do not leave baby in tub alone? All no brainers to me!

I feel for the families who have had their child injured or killed in any way. In no way do I mean to make light of their situations. Nor do I disagree if you want to return the Bumbo for your own reasons. Just trying to say think about things before you do them - especially where babies and kids are involved. Don't take even the slimmest of chances.

Here is a good example - a 3rd grader wanted to walk home from school alone the other day. Her mom said yes because her younger siblings still wanted to play - the child's father was at home and their house was only a few blocks away. Then the mom thought better and said she had to go and ran after the child. Later that night we got an e-mail from the PTA about a strange man in a car talking to kids on their way home from school in a neighboring town. I bet that mom was so happy that she went with her gut instincts when she got that e-mail!

For Swamp Foot Girl

To Sami,
Here are some baby pictures of Sean! I thought you might enjoy them! Thanks for being a loyal follower of our blog! And for saying how cute my kids are! And for liking yellow and rain boots -and yellow rain boots! Hope this brightens your day at work!

tons of smiles

so cute! Sean in the snow

at Christmas
hangin' out
1st cereal
what a face!