Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

  The boys had a great Halloween.  Anthony had a Halloween party with the other kindergarteners followed by a school-wide parade.  I assume they did Halloween fun at Kids’ Place, too!

  You can't tell from the picture, but Anthony is sporting an awesome vampire costume and Richie is a monkey.

  We went trick-or-treating as a family to a few houses on the block.  Richard was thrilled to receive a box of animal crackers at one house; a treat he could actually enjoy.  After that I went home to hand out treats (books!) and Anthony went out trick-or-treating with his girl-pal Sydney.  Unlike some years where he and his friends ran from house to house, he and Sydney must have set some sort of record for slowest night ever.  Fine with me, he doesn’t need pounds of candy.

  He had fun, and that’s all that matters!
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Monday, October 28, 2013

Pumpkin Carving Party

 Yesterday we went to a pumpkin carving party at Collin’s house.  (How is it that a three year old gets to claim possession of an entire house??)

  In the car going over there Anthony read the diagram (correctly) of the six steps to use the pumpkin carving kit.  He was a phenominal helper.  He practically did the whole thing himself, though Bob certainly helped with some of the fine detail.

  Richie was less than helpful.  He certainly was adorable in his tiger sweatsuit and monster shirt.  (Well, he’s adorable in anything.)  He had a lovely time crawling around, got up close and personal with a labradoodle puppy and played with all of Collin’s brother’s toys.
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Friday, October 25, 2013

Monster Mash

 Tonight was Anthony’s first school dance.  He was very excited but very nervous at the same time.  He held my hand tightly as we walked over to school.  When we got there he immediately saw some kindergarten friends and I pretty much didn’t see him for the rest of the night.

  About my costume.  I started planning it about 2 days before the dance.  Key requirements:  no effort and only uses things that we already had at the house.  It came down to National Geographic Photographer (wearing Bob’s photo vest) or doctor.  Doctor won out, and I’ve decided to try and see how many costumes I can make out of my lab coat.
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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Ardenwood Farm

 A few weeks ago we went to the big harvest festival at Ardonwood Farm.  I'd wanted to go for a few years now, but this was the first year the stars were aligned.  We had an amazing time and were there from opening until closing!

  We started off in the cornfields.  We picked maybe 2 dozen ears of popcorn and then went to pick some indian corn.  It was tricky at first.  Navigating the cornfield wasn't easy, Anthony needed help picking the corn and Richie was trying to sleep in the Ergo carrier, but we managed.  Anthony was enthralled with the colors of the indian corn, he thought that was really neat.  We had to "pay" for our corn by donating 25% back to the farm.  He was really careful to save the prettiest corn for us.

Ardenwood is an historical farm; all of the activities were Victorian era.  We made homemade ice cream, pressed cider and toured the historic mansion.  After the magic show Anthony went back and picked a good dozen more ears of corn.

After all that, we went to the pumpkin patch for awhile.  It was a trick getting back to the car with the stroller basket full of corn, our lunch cooler, the diaper bag AND an enormous pumpkin, but somehow we did it.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


   We went to Legoland for our 10th anniversary last month.  (We did #9 better with a week in Hawaii.)

  Anthony loved Legoland.  He doesn't really appreciate lego bricks, but he thought mini-town was cool.  He really appreciated being tall enough to ride all the rides.  Richard got to crawl around in the toddler area for awhile.  Richard's favorite part of the trip was the disco ball in the hotel elevator.  He thought that was amazingly cool.  So did Anthony, he danced up a storm every trip.

Richard had one of those "we're never traveling again trips" as he only slept in our bed and kept waking up everyone.

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Monday, October 21, 2013

Growing Up

 A sign that the boys are growing up.  Anthony and Ciaran rode the "Danny the Dragon" ride all by themselves.  I was a little nervous, its a long ride and "boyness" is multiplicative, rather than additive.

  They also enjoyed a new puppet show "Coyote's Giveaway", a Lakota tale, and prospecting for dinosaur bones.

  Richie pretty much missed out on all the fun.

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Sunday, October 20, 2013


 Check it out, Richie is really growing hair.
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Friday, October 18, 2013

School Birthday Party

 Anthony's school celebrates birthdays a month at the time, with all three kindergarten classes participating.  He really got to be the star of the show with 75 kids singing "Happy Birthday."

  Another mom and I split the work.  I made the cupcakes and sent some leftover paper goods from his party.  She provided party favors (books) and some fruit.

  He had a great time!
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Sunday, October 6, 2013

Birthday Party

 Anthony's sixth birthday party was a great success.  We had about 16 kids, mostly from his kindergarten class and a few kids from Kathleen's house and the neighborhood.  We held it at a local park which has a fabulous water play area which serves as a great ice breaker.

  It was the easiest party ever.  The kids played in the park and with the bubbles I brought.  At the end we did cupcakes and a pinata and everyone had a great time.

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Friday, October 4, 2013

Six Years Old (and a loose tooth)

 Anthony is six years old today!!!!!

  We went to Fiesta del Mar (his and our favorite restaurant) to celebrate and he commented that his loose tooth hurt.  He's had ficticious loose teeth for over a year now.  But when I looked at him across the table, his tooth didn't look quite as nicely lined up as it usually is.  Sure enough, he finally got a loose tooth.  He is a bit anxious about it now.  Will it hurt when it comes out, will there be blood, who will take care of me when it happens, etc.

  Despite the lego in the picture, he really isn't into lego.  Magnatiles, on the other hand, are played with every single day.  Grandma Donna gave him an expansion pack of magnatiles for his birthday and he got to work with them.

  Other favorite toys include his baby brother, his scooter and his expansive collection of figuerines which live in magnatile houses.

  He is settling nicely into kindergarten, though I think he prefers playtime to work time.  His writing is still very much a work in progress.  His pre-reading skills, while strong before, have improved remarkably.  His latest trick is to break down words into their sounds and then spell them out.  As long as the letters follow "normal" rules of spelling, he can really do it.  He can't go the other way yet.  For example:  he knows that MAT is mmm-aaa-ttt.  M-A-T.  However, he can't read mat.  I assume that will come relatively soon.

  After school he spends the afternoon at YMCA run after care.  They seem to have a good program and he's made friends with a lot of kids, including a bunch of older girls.  Thursdays he takes Spanish after school.  He is enjoying that and I hope that exposure to the language will help him in the long run.

  Anthony is also very proud of the blisters on his hands from monkey bars.  I think he must play on them for hours each day.  His latest trick is shimmying across the moneky bars on the OUTSIDE bar.  He can also hang upside down from the horizontal bar.  Fortunately he hasn't tried to swing down that way, he reaches back up and grabs on to the bar to get off.  Keeping fingers crossed that there are no broken bones in our future!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Richie is Nine Months Old

Richie is growing so much, its amazing!

He crawls up a storm.  His poor little forehead is covered with bruises from running into things.  He's also fallen into the playroom twice.  (Its a step down and gating it off isn't really possible.)

He can easily pull to standing and has mastered a controlled sit, the kind where he lands on his bottom rather than falling all the way backwards.

He loves to jump.  He'll jump in his exersaucer or in the doorway jumper at Kathleen's.  If he's excited he'll jump his little bottom up and down while sitting and laughing.  It is fabulous!

Richie definitely understands the word "no".  The other day he was trying to get into the cat food and I said no to him.  He sat there and started crying because he really really wanted to play in the cat dishes but wasn't allowed to.  I doubt that phase will last.

He eats more solid food than puree now.  His absolute favorite food is graham crackers, which just make a nasty mess.  In this picture he's eating a delicacy known as "buttered toast".  (Whole wheat, of course.)  He is also enjoying pears.  Last night he ate chicken breast and pears for dinner. 

In terms of clothes he wears either 6-9 month clothes (which fit well) or 6-12 month clothes which are a bit roomy. 

Doctor appointment in a few weeks will give us a weight check.