Monday, December 19, 2011

Booker's Prayer Tonight

Dear Lord, Christmas is coming soon. I know it's not all about Santa, or the presents. It's about giving, sharing, and Your birthday. And if you're bad, you get on the naughty list and don't get any presents. But that's ok, there's always next year!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

All Shook Up

Elvis has our home "all shook up." The boys love to wake up, and even argue about who gets to wake up first, to discover what Elvis has been up to after his nightly trip to the North Pole. Here's what he's been up to the past few nights.

A closer look... (excuse the bad photography)

He tp'd our tree!

And made himself right at home.

Ho! Ho! Ho!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Elvis The Elf

I don't know how this happened so fast. I've seen Elf on a Shelf around for a few years now, and always thought it might be something I should get for the kids. And then I always back off when I remember it costs $30. But yesterday Cori said she got one for her kids, and that stores around the city were starting to run out of them. And even then, I still wasn't going to spend the money. But as the day went on, and as I keep seeing Facebook & Pinterest posts on all these cute little ideas for the elves, and how excited all of these little kids are... I caved. Hey, my kids should be this excited too!

So today, Booker and Bodey got a package from Santa. Elf on a Shelf, along with a little storybook that explains who he is and why he's here. The boys really enjoyed the story, taking in every little word about it. But, one of the tasks in the book is to name the elf. So we did. We named our little friend Elvis. Well, 3 out of 4 of us named him Elvis. We had to vote, because there will never be a day that B&B can agree on a name. Sadly, Booker lost, and our elf is not Tim. And he is still not happy about it.

Luckily, tonight on TV was also a cartoon about Elf on a Shelf. The kids got to stay up past their bedtime to watch it, and I'm so glad they did. It kind of helped reinforce Santa's rules about Elvis. He cannot be touched, or he will lose his magic. He can't talk to you, but you can talk to him. And he flies home every night to report to Santa. It was great. So when it was time to go to bed tonight, Bodey was telling Elvis goodnight and waving at him. Then he decided that he should send the Elvis puppet he made tonight with him for Santa. After the boys had been in bed for about 15 minutes, Dusty and I ran in there to tell them that while we were downstairs, Elvis already flew back to the North Pole! They ran out to find him missing. Bodey was so excited he didn't forget to take the Elvis puppet with him!

The Elvis puppet
Another reason I was hesitant to invest in this elf was because I have to be creative. And I'm not. Good thing zillions of people on the internet are, and I can just copy their ideas of how/where Elvis will be when we wake up the next morning. Elvis is a tad of a mischievous elf, and when the boys wake up they have to find him, and see what he's been up to. Tomorrow the boys will find that Elvis made a snow angel on our kitchen table.

And to hopefully help Booker enjoy the name we picked out, Elvis also left the boys this note.

This is only the first night of having our little elf, but it is truly worth the $30. I love to see my kids eyes light up. I love that Bodey will randomly just tell me how much he loves Elvis. And I love that we now have a little Christmas tradition.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Cauliflower Ear- Maybe Not!

The boys both started wrestling practice last night. All they do at home is wrestle each other, so why not get them where they are trained correctly, and possibly be a little more safe. Wishful thinking, I know. Bodey has always had a natural wrestling build. Pretty stout. He also has a way of nestling someone down on the ground and holding them there, so why not?!? Booker seems to get bored with team sports, so we wanted to try an individual sport this winter. Wrestling won, again.

Now, I do have the fear of my two precious babies running around with cauliflower ear at a very young age... but, alas! The Tonganoxie Club is forcing all kids to wear headgear this year! Dusty couldn't understand it. He said it was optional when he was growing up, and hardly anyone wore it. Uh huh. Just like car seats and bike helmets. Our kids DON'T KNOW HOW STUPID WE WERE! It is what they will always know. And I love it!

We have struggled in the past with the coaches we have gotten stuck with in sports. They seem to lack any fire under their butt, and, sorry, but when you are coaching 4 and 5 year olds, you gotta be in charge. And you have to let them know that right away. Like with a loud whistle. That's what Coach Wrestler (don't know his name) did last night. Forty 4 and 5 year olds - eyes on him. He yelled orders at them loudly so they could all hear. Another A+ in my book. He threatened them with mountain climbers. My boys don't even know what they are, but they know there is a consequence if they talk and don't listen. I was also very pleased with the material he taught them on day 1. No messing around with this guy. You are gonna practice, and you are gonna learn. There wasn't an attitude of, "Well, they might be too young to learn that." Nope... that was my job. The coach taught them, and I doubted their ability to do the hard things he was teaching them. But how could I forget that I live with two little sponges eager to learn new things... especially cool WWE/Power Ranger/Transformer moves!

Bodey really surprised me. He was so focused. The entire 45 minutes. That is rare for this little man of energy. But this was right up his alley and he was totally digging it. Bodey is also the kid that wants to do something, watches someone else do it, and then masters it himself. A monkey see, monkey do dude.

Booker did really well, too. Although, he still has a ho-hum attitude about all sports in general. He wasn't as overly aggressive or as enthused as Bodey, but basically did everything he was asked. I was really proud of him.

My camera flash wouldn't reach Booker way over on the other side of the mat, but here are a few shots of Bodey in action. He looked so big out there. Maybe it's because he didn't have his glasses on? I don't know, but all of a sudden he looked like a teenager. He's the one in the big purple headgear that is going to save those precious little ears!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

"Fall"ing Behind

Wow, this fall has been insanely busy. We just finished Booker's football season. Some days he liked football, others he had absolutely no interest, but it was cute to watch either way. Booker seems to be getting a little more interested in sports. He brought home the below picture from school the other day. He drew all of those sports teams except the Wildcat, which Dusty drew. I thought they were great!

Halloween, once again, proved itself crazy busy, but tons of fun! We began the festivities with Bodey's school Trunk or Treat. I wasn't sure what to expect, but some of those moms (names not to be mentioned for fear of being de-friended on Facebook! :) ) really go all out! They dress up in costume and their trunks look fabulous! Here was mine, just plain jane, but got the job done.

And here comes the little parade of preschoolers! Bodey was a Nascar driver for his school event, but a rodeo clown for trick-or-treating. They must have practiced their wave before coming outside. And at each car they politely asked, "May I have a treat, please?" instead of TRICK-OR-TREAT! It was music to my ears!

We also ventured out to Lee's Summit to Paradise Park for a little fun. Booker drove his own go-cart, and did very well. He never hit a wall. Then Dusty took Bodey for a spin. They hit a few walls.

Then, at the last minute, on Halloween Eve, we carved our pumpkins and roasted our seeds.

On Halloween, Booker's school had a costume parade and their classroom parties. Booker was Optimus Prime, but wouldn't wear his mask.

Booker making marshmallow goblins.

And, finally, candy. Candy. Candy. If you didn't notice, Booker is not Optimus Prime in this picture. That is because 15 minutes before we left the house, he changed his mind and wanted to be the same dinosaur he was last year. Whatever. I have learned to pick my battles. So, here is my little dinosaur and rodeo cowboy, ready to devour Nana & Papa's neighborhood.

And they each came home with two overly stuffed, heavy pillow cases of candy. And we still have way too much of it. And my waistline is expanding. And that's what our fall has been all about!

Oh yeah, and last night we went to see the wolves at the high school. Not sure I bought the whole spiel of the man's speech, but it was really neat to see live wolves. Booker even got to touch one!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Help Wanted

I'm at my wits end. I don't know what to do with Bodey. We are just now starting a VERY long uphill battle. And I fear we have about 20 more years of it ahead. I can't figure him out, don't know what to do, and need some serious help.

When Bodey was at Tots N Tales, we learned that he was a rule breaker. He pushes all limits. He opposes all authority. But he wasn't like this at home. I know his teachers didn't believe me when I told them, but it was true. But in a school setting, all hell broke loose. He never had good days. Only bad. I prayed about it, read books about it, but nothing helped. So I thought that the change of schools to his new preschool would be a good thing. That it might help.

Bodey was super excited to start his new school. And the first couple of weeks were great. But then I started getting notes from the teachers about his bad behavior. And then talks from the teachers. Bodey throwing fits when he doesn't get what he wants, threatening friends and teachers, talking back, throwing toys. You name it. My heart is broken. I don't know what to tell them, and they don't know what to tell me. He is the strong-willed child. And I feel like a failing mom.

My friends say that he is great for them when they watch him, he is typically good at home, he is great for Nana & Papa when he stays there. I have possibly figured out that 1) he doesn't like authority, 2) he seems to be worse when he is competing for full attention, and 3) no kind of discipline seems to work. We have tried grounding him, taking away all privileges, not letting him do the things he loves. Didn't work. We have switched that all the way around to telling him we are sad he had a bad day at school and we know next time will be better, so let's just have a positive rest of our day. And we have surrounded him with positive energy. Didn't work. We have started a reward system using dimes. Take them away for bad actions, earn them for good actions. Not really working.

Today was my last straw. I left him in child watch at the Y while I worked out. It was only 30 minutes. And the teacher had nothing good to say. Stealing toys from friends, throwing toys when he didn't get his way, telling his teacher to shut her mouth. Yes, that came out of my 4-yr old's mouth. And I was just purely embarrassed. I'm mentally exhausted from this. I went straight to the library to get yet another parenting book that probably won't work. I think I just need Super Nanny to come to the rescue.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fall Photos

The boys were out of school on Friday, so I decided that it was time to take advantage of the beautiful weather and do a photo shoot. It was probably one of the most stressful days I've had in a long time. They just weren't cooperating all that well. Very fake, cheesy, forced smiles. Lots of whining. I was going crazy. Then we went and got flu shots. Strangely enough, I decided to chance taking more pictures after shots, and they went extremely well! So, even though you probably don't think I narrowed them down at all, I did. I took 310 pictures, and here are a few of my favorites.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Boy Stories

Yesterday, Booker came home from school and said, "Joe (not the kids real name) said 'you are fat'". I told Booker that he is clearly not fat, nowhere near being fat, and just to ignore that little mean boy. Then Booker said, "No, mom, he said you are fat. He said my mom is fat." OH NO HE DI-ENT! Are you kidding me? The Your Momma jokes are floating around in Kindergarten? Oh wow.

On to Bodey news, he decided yesterday that he is going to ride his bike with no training wheels. So he did. Once I got him going he was good... even turned around. But once he stopped I had to keep getting him going again. So then I started ignoring him when he would stop. And that little determined guy tried, and tried, and tried until he taught himself to get going my himself. Never once complained, never once got frustrated, never once asked for help. I was very impressed. He even went up and down the curb! He is a crazy little man, but I love his determination.

Last night Booker and Bodey were wrestling each other, like they do every chance they get, when one of them got hurt. Wrestling in our house always ends up in tears, so we tell them not to wrestle, and if they decide not to listen and one of them gets hurt, we don't care because we warned them. They always decide to wrestle anyway, and then come crying to us later. Anyways, last night when Bodey got hurt Dusty got mad and told them that if he catches them wrestling again, they would both be sent to their rooms. Booker said that Bodey always makes him wrestle. Dusty told him next time just to walk away and come stand next to him, that way Bodey will probably stop. And Booker said, "But, Daddy, how will I get away from him? Bodey has super strength!" I love that even the big brother looks up to his little brother every once in a while.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Hot and Cold

Thursday was picture day at Bodey's school. Whenever the boys wear a button up shirt, they complain, and wonder why they have to wear their "handsome" shirts. Well, Bodey didn't complain. He was quite proud to be in his "handsome" shirt. Booker kept coming up behind him and slapping him on the bottom and yelling, "You're hot!" Bodey was getting more and more upset about this until he finally broke down crying, "No, I'm not. I'm not hot." Don't know what he thought it meant, but he didn't like it! I had to explain that Booker was simply implying that Bodey looked handsome. Then tonight he came up to Dusty asking him if he was hot. Dusty kept feeling his forehead and saying no. Then Bodey finally said, "No, like handsome, daddy."

The other day we were eating ice cream and Bodey said, "Whoa, mom. This is cold. It's even colder than the 'cold'-de-sac!"

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Worth the Pain?

In the middle of July as Jen, Cori and I were running along K32, out of the blue I have sudden, extreme, knee pain. I had no clue why, but this was only on mile 5 of our 14 mile run, and I had been feeling great (for once) and wanted to keep going. So, I did. I ran through to mile 8. Then it became too painful to push it, so I walked 4.5 more miles. And then my knee hurt for 2 weeks. After a sports medicine visit and two physical therapists, I learned, what I expected, that I have IT band problems. So I started the strengthening and stretching that the first PT told me to do. And it didn't really help. I couldn't go further than a mile without pain. So Cori talked me into going to the PT she went to last year - that fixed her! But, deep down inside, I knew how they fixed her, and didn't want to go. It's called Astym people, and it hurts. BAD! But, it also works. Basically, they use these little tools to do a very deep tissue rub (more like scrape) on your leg.

It breaks down scar tissue and then "reheals" any underlying injuries. After just one treatment I saw improvement in my pain level while running. I still had the pain, but I could go further each time without feeling pain. After 4 treatments I was able to run 3 miles, on hills, without pain. Tomorrow will be the true test - a 10-miler. Oye. Anyways, I have not been able to go in public in shorts for the last 3 weeks, because my legs look like this:

No, I don't have a skin disease, those are bruises. And they look worse in person, but I can honestly say, I think they are worth it!


Lately, I've been letting the boys play unattended in our fenced back yard. They can't escape, and I don't have to sit and watch for traffic. Seems like a great plan... except they have been getting into a little mischief lately.

The other day Bodey came running in to tell me Booker is trapped in Avery's dog cage. Sure enough, here's what I found.

Another day, they both came running inside with very scared little voices. I asked them what is wrong and they admitted to breaking Avery's cage by sitting on it. HUH? So I went outside to find that they had climbed the chain link and sat on top of the mesh sunshade on the top of the cage! Really boys? I'm so glad they didn't get hurt.

The next day, Booker came in and asked if I wanted to come look at something. On the way out he happened to mention that that "something" was Avery all tied up. OH MY! I ran outside to find the poor dog bungee corded by her collar in between the swing set and a basketball hoop they had dragged over there. Good thing they didn't hang her! She just sat there, smiling and panting. Poor girl.

Busy With Buddies

We have been so busy lately, but in a really great way. The boys have been having the time of their lives enjoying this awesome weather and their friends! Every day we have been with friends, whether it's just neighbors hanging out, being at school, going on field trips, watching our friends while their mom is busy, or going to our friends' house when our mom is busy.

One day we watched Cooper for a little while and the boys had a picnic together outside while all the "big" kids were at school.

Then we had a whole crew of kiddos over during parent-teacher conferences. Isn't that the cutest bunch of kids you've ever seen?

Then, last Friday when the kids were out of school, Cori and I took the kids up to Shatto Farms. They sell their milk in glass bottles and have several different flavors, our favorite being Rootbeer milk. They also make cheese curds - that are to die for. We didn't pay for the tour, but took a self-guided tour for free, and had just as much fun.

I love all of their happy, excited faces in this picture!

And this one... :)

On Sunday, we attended our church's Fam Fest. Needless to say, they outdid themselves again this year and the kids had a BLAST!