Sunday, April 25, 2010

Mr S is Two!

Mr S finally turned two years old. We had a combined birthday party with another family whose daughter turned three. Since they hosted, it was a Hello Kitty birthday. Mr S didn't mind, since he got a Basketball cake, and cars and shovels for gifts.

I Love Two Year Olds

There is something about this age that is so precious. Everything they say is adorable. Even the temper tantrums can be comical at times. Our little S turned two on Tuesday and I can't get enough of this kid. As he is sitting in his bed screaming about something that upset him, I have to wonder why I love two year olds so much. So here's a list of some of the things that make this age so cool.

1. The way the talk is so funny. Usually they leave off multiple sounds from their words and often the sounds they can say are a bit off. It makes most common phrases hilarious. We say "pwease" and "fank you", we get "biaper" changes and we eat lots of "cwackews."

2. 2 year olds have no idea what the difference between loud and soft is. And mostly it's just loud. S yells "hi" and "bye" to any stranger he meets and at any car passing by the front of our house. Oh, and all the birds and various animal/plant life that can be seen from the front window. This becomes slightly problematic in settings that require silence, so we generally avoid those areas.

3. Kids this age are expert imitators. You begin to realize what your favorite catch phrase is from them. When G-man was 2, we said "dude" a lot. When Kiwi was 2 we said "ah man" a lot. S has picked up "holy cow" and occasionally "holy crap." Which is one of the lesser cuss words in the mormon lexicon. I'd hate to have him shocking the nursery leader with that one.

The other day Kiwi asked "Are me and G going to the store?" S promptly started saying "mean G-man". Because that's what it sounded like to him. So I instructed Kiwi to say "Are G-man and I going to the store." S chimed in and said "G-man nice" Apparently both phrases are confusing. And since he likes to label everyone he knows as mean or nice, he was easily confused by it.

4. 2 year olds are easily obsessed with things. Mr. S is obsessed with trash cans and garbage trucks. Tuesdays are the best days of his life. He can't wait to take the can to the curb Monday night and most of Tuesday breakfast is spent at the front window watching the garbage truck go by. If he sees a trash can that has fallen over, you hear about it all day and he will try to convince you to go back and pick it up. He has learned what the color blue is from the recycling bin.

There is much more I could list. There are also some definite downsides the the age that I could list like the tantrums, the screaming, the frustration when misunderstood, the inability to share, etc, etc. I like to say the difference between two and two and a half is these two year olds still seem so innocent and haven't quite gained the attitude that comes in another six months. And then the "crap" will hit the fan.

A few videos to illustrate.
video video

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Trip to CO

Chad and I left our kids for an extended weekend to Colorado. What bliss! I try to do this before we add another kid to the family. Probably to remind us we still like each other and hope those memories last through the 2am feedings, postpartum crazy, and general adjustment that comes with a new baby.
It seems as I have more kids I have fewer issues with leaving them. Before Kiwi was born I couldn't bring myself to leave G-man so we brought my parents with us on our vacation to Canada. This Colorado vacation was the second time we've left our kids with my parents in the past 12 months. I could have stayed away longer but I think it may have killed my mom. Especially since my dad wasn't at full capacity due to two injured arms (he fell out of the back of a truck, breaking one and fracturing the other. Crazy man).
We stayed at a Colorado version of Sedona called Estes Park. It's where all the Denverites spend their summer vacation. There are no skiing areas nearby, but it is right next to Rocky Mountain National park. We perused the shops and found many stores that sold the same things that are sold in Sedona (Chad's home town). But we completely and totally lived the tourist role, buying sweatshirts, ice cream, fudge, and a magnet for the fridge. Plus a few trinkets for the kids
Here are a few picture from the trip:


This is right in front of our room. I was shocked there was still so much snow. I'm sure most Arizonans live in blissful ignorance to the torture that is snow in the winter time.













This is the only picture of us together. Sporting our newly purchased Colorado sou-vies up in the Rocky Mountain National Park.












We drove for about 5 hours to the continental divide. There is a road closer to Estes Park that goes that high, but it was still closed for the winter. We actually drove a ways past this point because the highway went through a tunnel under the continental divide. We had to back track to actually drive into the mountains to find this stupid sign. Stupid tourists.








This was a giant statue of naked people dancing in downtown Denver. I found it amusing. I was surprised by how much land there is in the Denver area. I guess I always figured Denver was located amongst the mountains, and not on the plains West of the mountains. It was so agricultural. Not quite what I expected.

We've always thought Denver would be a fun place to end up in the future. I just don't know if I could handle the cold.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

G-man's Monkey

We finally got G-man a monkey. Doesn't every child really want a monkey?



This paper-mâché monkey was for a project about the forest, and G-man created a new animal. I for one love the smile. Quite maniacal.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Fun in the Garden

We planted a winter garden this year and have had mixed results. Something is eating our lettuce. We aren't sure if it's lizards or crickets or squirrels. I'm pretty sure the rabbits living in the alley can't jump our five foot fence. I guess if we see an explosion of any of those populations, we know what we fed through the winter.

I think the biggest problem was we planted too late in the season. Or I expected too much from the garden during the cold weather. Or we need to add some fertilizer to the ground. We planted in mid-September and weren't able to harvest anything until February. We had some very wet spells in the fall, so I stopped watering as much. As a result our carrots weren't able to grow very deep into the ground and came out short and squatty. Then we found this carrot last week that is the biggest I've ever seen from our garden. Mr. S ate the whole thing. He loves to eat the carrots from the garden. Our winter carrots have definitely tasted better than the ones we planted in the spring.
We also had some success with broccoli. I think we planted the wrong variety because none of the bunches of broccoli grew very big. It took four or five plants to get enough broccoli to feed our family.

We also planted beets. I think beets are very pretty when you slice them. My parents always had beets in the garden when I was a kid. We've found a great recipe for beet green that some of the kids will eat. We also were able to make some Ukrainian Borscht soup with beets and carrots from our garden. This is my favorite recipe Chad brought home from his mission. Unfortunately the cabbage wasn't ready in time so we had to buy some. Maybe the beets will survive for one more round of soup when the cabbage heads finally finish forming.
As our winter garden is finishing up we have started again on the spring garden. We cleared out another area of the year and hope to rotate our garden between these two areas. We waited to plant until after Valentine's day to avoid any freezes, and then there was a late freeze. Our tomatoes and peppers survived, but their growth is definitely behind what it could have been. Some new things we've tried for this year is garlic, potatoes, and asparagus. I'm really hoping the asparagus roots produce. That is one of my favorite veggies.

Right now Chad is at a feed store doing some research into chickens. He's been studying some building plans for a chicken coop for the last few weeks as well. I keep telling him if he really wants chicken he has to take care of it. If they die from neglect because he's not around, so be it. I'm not taking care of chickens and a baby at the same time. I guess we can't be like normal sane people and get a dog.