Monday, February 28, 2011

Ian/Bill Nye Experiment Video

I never thought I would say this, but sometimes I can see myself home schooling.  There would have to be extenuating circumstances for me to seriously consider it (bullying, inadequate services, um, a complete change in attitude from Ian toward learning from me...)

Today Ian is home sick, and I *made* him watch an episode of Bill Nye the Science Guy instead of turning off his brain and watching Star Wars for the forty-seventh time.  Turns out, he LOVES it (gee- surprise!) and he wanted to do an experiment that he saw on there.

So we did- and it was awesome!  

Friday, February 25, 2011

Photo Journal: Warm Afternoon

 (Ian picked out this outfit, then came outside and asked me, "Hey, Mom.  Don't I look handsome in this?"
 Notice the accessorizing he did, as well.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Bed Head and Smoothie Recipe

I love the mornings after bath night.

 Breakfast Smoothie Recipe (or Moozie??? as per Chase)
recipe makes 3- each boy has one every morning:
2 bananas
1 apple (or a peach, a handful of blueberries, whatever you have on hand)
2 giant scoops of plain lowfat yogurt
2t honey
about 8 oz juice (I usually use OJ, but have recently branched out into the Naked Green Juice)
3 JuicePlus+ veggie capsules
3 JuicePlus+ fruit capsules
2 scoops JP+ Complete OR Herbal Life allergen free protein powder (Chase and Gavin are soy-sensitive)

Blend away and serve immediately.  
The boys can suck them down really fast in the morning rush, and I know that they start the day with something great for their bodies.

 Chase is home from school today.  He was up all night with a fever, and is obviously still feeling completely under the weather:

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

TIdbits from School

From Ian:

Today, Juan was supposed to cut out his shirt journal, but instead he threw up on it.  But he was behind us, so it was okay.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Oatmeal On-the-go Bars: A total win.

The boys normally start their days off with a fruit smoothie with JuicePlus and some protein powder in it, but I also like to make a big batch of Raisin Bran muffins or something each week to be able to have a super quick, but relatively healthy something to throw at them when we are running late, or need an afternoon snack or something.

I like the idea of granola bars, but I don't like the idea of paying out the nose for the good ones, and I haven't loved any of the homemade granola bars, because they turn out sticky and hard to chew, crumbly, and simply a big old mess and a lot of work for not a lot of result.

But HELLO!  This morning I tried this recipe for Oatmeal On-the-go Bars, and they are winners.  Not too sweet, not sticky, and Ian and Guy gobbled them up.  I subbed a 1/2c of wheat germ for the almond meal, and baked them for exactly 30 minutes.  They turned out of the pan with no problem, and they are soft and chewy, and remind me of a bowl of apple-cinnamon oatmeal.

This recipe is definitely making it into the official rotation.  In fact, I probably have to make another batch of them today since we ate almost all of them already, and it is not even noon yet.

Also- this blog, Cooking with My Kid, is awesome.  I'm trying the Crunchy Roasted Chickpeas next.

One More Playground Pic

Brandon orchestrated this shot at the playground on Saturday- all of us in one place at the same time!

We are so lucky to have such good friends living so close to us to be able to do spur-of-the-moment super fun playground dates.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Saturday Morning Park Shenanigans

Brandon and Bryan planned a park outing for our families this morning.  The weather is totally gorgeous here, and we've all been spending as much time outside as humanly possible, for fear that winter is not completely gone yet and this reprieve will be over soon.  Not that I don't enjoy the winter weather- I do like the snow and the jacket-temperatures, but this little glimpse of spring came at just the right time when we all needed a touch of sun and fresh air.

We took the families to the playground at the kids' school- and oh, what a playground it is!!  All kids had a blast (and all parents did, too).  I love that Ian and Chase go here- not only because they can be in the same school (and can hug each other in the hallways) but because they can play on this awesome playground every day!!  Woot!

Weston and Guy- the dynamic duo.

 Guy and Chase aren't gathered around me because they love's because I am in charge of the bag of BBQ chips.
 Mmmm.  Just what I wanted.  A booger and dirt covered chip.  Thanks, Chase!

 Again- they are only there because now I am in charge of the Skittles.

 Love me some Ian.

 Funny story...Guy fell off the swing 2 seconds later because he let go so he could brush the hair out of his eyes.
 Guy is signing 'more' for more Skittles.  He says, "nee-nee?" (candy?) when he wants some, which is whenever he sees candy.

Ian wanted me to take a picture of him with his soccer ball.  Can you tell he is ready for the soccer season to begin??

Totally perfect morning out :)

Monday, February 14, 2011


Hop on over to Adding to the Maddness to check out our blog auction fund raiser!

We have some really cute items plus a bunch of other stuff that you need, whether you knew it before or not.

We have started to hit major adoption expenses, and have a lot more to go as our travel date gets closer and closer.  Help us spread the word by tweeting our link, FBing it, and bribing your friends and family members to bid. :)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Happy 6th Birthday, Ian!

With all the party planning and other business going on around here, I forgot to post on Ian's birthday!!  That doesn't mean he didn't have a special day, though.

My boy is 6!

He woke up to six balloons over his bed, and came downstairs to his requested breakfast: chocolate chip pancakes with chocolate milk.  He ate half a pancake and declared himself full.  Gah.

He opened one present before school...we found him a super awesome Star Wars sweatshirt.

I met him at school for lunch armed with 24 mini cupcakes.  Let me just tell you, I am seriously going to miss the days when I go to his school and am greeted with a giant smile, hugs all over the place, and kisses right in front of his friends.  He held my hand all the way to the lunch room and saved me a seat.

We rounded out the day with a spaghetti dinner and more cupcakes for dessert.  It was a tie for cutest moment- either Ian's face in front of the candle while we sang, or Guy and Chase's voices singing "Happy Birthday".  Love this family!

(I have a video of the singing part...I will post later.  Right now it is almost 1am and I am almost done with the decorating and prepping for his "friends" Star Wars birthday party tomorrow today.)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Chasey Chasey Helper Facey

Chase (when the mood strikes him) is so super gentle and awesome when we have teenies around.  He got home from school today, sat down with his snack, and leaned over to help with Addie's bottle.

He gets really protective, too.  If I try to take back control, he will tell me "Chasey does it" and then tell me to go away.

Chase in a Box

I found Chase in his toy box again this evening after I put him to bed.  Instead of putting him right back in bed, I thought I would do a little interview:

and a second one just because I like to watch him:

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


I don't know if he has a natural ability or if he just learned from the best, but I am fairly confidant that Gavin will get into the most trouble throughout his life out of all the boys.

I was warming Addie's bottle up in the kitchen and I thought he was drawing on the chalk board by the stairs just now.  But, no.  He was into a much bigger art project, using baby powder as his medium:

Caught in the act!
 Denial- What mess?
 Oh!  This mess here! I have NO idea how this happened.
 But I'll help you clean it up, Mom.

Notice that he had already tried to clean it up with the wipes before I discovered him.  So, obviously he knew this was not a good idea.  Stinker!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Gavin Things

At 19 months, Guy can jump.  He gets both feet about a 1/2 inch off the floor and he is so proud of his new trick.

It amazes me that he taught him self this skill.  I don't even know how long we worked with Chase to teach him to jump, but I know that it was one of his PT goals for 6 months, and we got a trampoline for him to practice on, for heaven's sake!  I'm not resentful of the ease of how he learns things as opposed to Chase, because I think I am in a good place in the realization that Chase does things at his own pace, and WILL do them eventually.  I just think that the pace and the learning curve of Gavin is something that I never really thought about when Ian was little, and now in comparison to Chase it is miraculous.  

Other things about Gavin:
*He likes to eat almonds.
*He sleeps with his Spoka (Ikea nightlight thing) and his monkey.
*He hoards toys.
*He loves singing Happy Birthday, Wheels on the Bus, Twinkle Twinkle, and Itsy Bitsy Spider.
*He does NOT liked to be buckled into his booster seat for meals.
*He drinks a smoothie every morning.
*He does everything that Chase does and Chase does everything that Guy does.  Someday I think they will create a vacuum of toddler energy with this cycle.
*When he gets upset or in trouble, he will wail "Beeeeedddddd!" while signing "tired", but he doesn't really want to go to bed.
*He loves all things Elmo.
*He loves baths and sometimes showers.
*He will not let you carry him up the stairs (independent much?).
*He likes to help load and unload the laundry and the dishes (and does a surprisingly good job at both!).
*He can reach and open all the drawers in the kitchen and steals random objects.  He is particularly fond of Chapstick, which he will either apply gently to his entire face or eat.
*He will take his dirty dishes to the sink and put his trash in the trash can.
*He can do those small wooden puzzles with the handles on the pieces by himself.
*He will declare, "Phone!" or say "Hello?" every time he hears a phone ring.  He will also try to answer it, as if he is expecting an important call any moment.

I totally love this kid, Chapstick habit and all.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Ian's 3rd marking period conference

Our 2nd official conference with Ian's teacher was this afternoon.  I went in with a little apprehension, due to those two reminders that he needed to stop his mouth and get his work on that came home last month.  I was wondering if the Kindergarten honeymoon had completely worn off. 

Good thing he nailed down that Terrific Kid award in November, right?

Teacher conferences are strange because they will tell you the truth.  It may be sugar coated a little, but they are not like your friends, who have to tell you that your kid is as awesome and amazing as you think he is, because, well, then they wouldn't be your friends, right?

So, I meet with his teacher (who I LOVE, btw) and she told me about his academics, which are really good.  He is a good reader and writer, and very good at math.  He works well (when he is not talking) and she'd just like to see him produce more (which he CAN do...when he is not talking!!!!).  I love that he is doing so well, but then, I knew he would.

The best part came next, when she talked about his kind heart.  She said (and I am paraphrasing here- where is my teeny tiny tape recorder from college when I need it??!?) that she doesn't know if it is because of him being Chase's big brother, or from good parenting, or from church, or if it is just his nature, but he just has the kind of compassion, understanding, and patience that it takes other kids (and adults) years and years to learn.  She said more, and I agreed with it all (of course), but mostly I was thinking about how I had said almost those exact words to Ian one day in the car.  

I can't even remember what we were talking about that day, but he asked something about why our family was so lucky to have Chase.  I don't know if he was referring to something that someone said, or if he felt unlucky, or if he had just made his own observation about how incredibly awesome we all are...but somehow I started talking about all the things that Chase teaches us, even though we spend lots of time teaching Chase things.

Anyway.  I just love him.  So much.  I know I have said it before, but I know he is the best big brother Chase could ever hope for.  God clearly lines our lives up to follow a certain path.

But, for the record, Ian is also awesome for treating Chase like the annoying little brother that he is sometimes.