Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Walking and Talking

Inspired by Michelle's interviews with Ciarra at DownBlogger, I decided I should try to get a bit of video of Sean's building vocabulary. He has several words and signs that he uses, but it isn't always easy to get him to perform on demand, as any parent knows! Here is take three of Sean's chat with Mom. Hope you enjoy it!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Snowman, Snowman, Snowman

We had a nice long holiday and are ready to catch up again. We spent a couple days with my family, enjoyed a visit from my big sister, Ann, and her daughter, Kari. Unfortunately I realized on the drive to my mom's that I had forgotten to pack our camera! Kari took some photos, and let Aidan take several as well, so hopefully I will get some shots of everyone together. We had lots of yummy Thanksgiving feasting and hit the stores for Black Friday shopping. Aidan and Sean had so much fun playing with their cousins. We only get to see Ann and Kari once a year, so he had a hard time remembering who they are. After spending a couple of hours making Playdough snowmen, snow forts and snowballs; I think they will have a clear memory of Kari! We came home in time to visit with Doug's family that drove down from KC. It started snowing as we pulled into town, so we had perfect timing for once. Grandma Janice hosted some great meals in the loft and the kids had fun chasing each other around the office building. Saturday afternoon, Aidan and cousin Mackenzie scrapped what little snow we got into a snowman! They did a great job making it, but the sun was their enemy so it didn't last long at all. Aidan woke up feeling crummy today, so we skipped school and stretched out the holiday one more day. He seems to be back to himself now, so it's back to school tomorrow. I know he won't admit it, but I am sure he misses seeing his teachers and friends. Hope everyone else had a great vacation, too. Speaking of school, here's a little clip from the school concert that fits this post!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

This isn't just a turkey,
As anyone can see.
I made it with my hand,
Which is part of me.
It comes with lots of love
Especially to say
I hope you have a very happy
Thanksgiving Day.

Sean, Aidan, Doug and Deborah

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Remembering the Mountain Lady

Yesterday was a day of fun with my family, but it was also a day of remembrance for me. On November 17, 2002, just two days after Aidan's birth, my paternal grandmother, Eleanor, passed away. I found out about her passing the day I left the hospital and brought my son home. I called my aunt to tell her of Aidan's birth and planned on calling my grandmother next if she wasn't at my aunt's having Sunday dinner. It broke my heart to hear that I was too late, my beloved grandmother had just died. I knew that her health hadn't been very good, but it still came as a shock. I had always hoped that I'd get out to visit her one more time.

I grew up with a wonderful close relationship with my Grandma El, whom the grandkids called the Mountain Lady. She lived in a golden ochre colored chalet in Allenspark Colorado, with a nice patch of mountains surrounding her home. I spent as much time as I could every summer there, hiking, talking, reading, growing and learning about myself, my family and my values in life. The Mountain Lady was a tough broad, as some liked to say. She wasn't the needlepoint, cookie baking grandma with photos of grandkids on the wall. She was the woman who created her own strength, encouraged independence, read National Geographic, Time and Newsweek, believed in enjoying all things in moderation. She loved to travel and felt it was the most important education a person could give themselves. She was a devote Catholic and had met the pope. She loved art, was an artist herself, and a tough critic.

So much of who I am and what I believe in came through my time with her. I dreamed of the days my children could spend with us in the chalet. How I would walk with them to the Mountain Lady's private picnic spot and cook hot dogs over the coals. I wanted to see her see me as a mother. I wanted her to be proud of my children, like she was proud of me.

It's been five years, and I still think of her every week, several times a week. Whether its while cooking a dish she taught me to make, reading a book I think she'd like, putting away dishes in the china cabinet she left to me, or seeing a beautiful sight in nature. I do feel her still in my life. Love does last forever.

I miss you Mountain Lady, but I know you are with me and in peace.

Webkinz Birthday Bash

Aidan had his party with friends yesterday and it was so much fun! We decided to do a Webkinz theme, so I could steal game ideas from the website. We invited 4 friends, but only 2 were able to come, his two girlfirends! His friend Madeline also brought her sister Emerie along to play with Sean, so he had some fun too.

The first thing we did was give each guest their goody bag gift, a LilWebkinz dog. Then Aidan opened his gift from me, the german shephard police dog he has been wanting for months. He was jumping up and down when he saw it!

We played Gem Hunt next. I made 4 "mines" filled with black shred, gems and rocks. Sean loved the shred part the most. The kids found lots of gems in each bag, then we stuck them on to strips of sparkle paper to make Webkinz Crowns of Wonder with their names on it. Actually, the parents did most of that project as the kids were too busy playing with the HotWheels track that Doug gave Aidan for his birthday.

We had lunch, then cake. I think you can see that the cake was a hit!

Aidan opened his gifts, then we played Spin the Wheel of Wow and the kids won more prizes. They especially loved the silly teeth Uncle Curt gave Aidan and the punch ball balloons!

What a fun way to celebrate a great little boy!

Friday, November 16, 2007

31 for 21 Swap Mail

I got a great package in the mail today from Margaret today for the 31 for 21 gift swap. She said she had her girls pick out things for the boys and me and I think they did a terrific job! I'm looking forward to making up that yummy cake and the boys couldn't wait to dive into new tins of playdo. Sean adores playing with playdo, but unfortunately he also adores eating it, so we go through a lot in this house! Thank you, Margaret, for all the lovely things!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Celllllebrate Good Times, Come On!

It's the night before Aidan's birthday and I am reminiscing about his birth and how shockingly fast the years have flown by.

I can't believe it has been five years since he was born! I can so clearly remember laying in bed the night before, rubbing my belly and telling him to hang tight! My due date was November 17 and I wanted Aidan to wait until November 16th or later to be born, because we had a huge event scheduled for the evening on the 15th at work. Doug and I had been working long days to get things ready at work so that I could take some time off after the birth. I needed one more day of working, and I went to bed telling Aidan "We are almost done, sweetie! One more day then we will be ready for you!"

Of course, he decided to wake me up at 6 am with contractions! Doug and I got out of bed, got showered and dressed and went in to work to try to get as much done as we could. I finally called my mom at 9 to ask her to take me to labor & delivery. Labor progressed at a steady pace and Aidan was born at 3:50 pm. Our big event at work started at 5 pm, run by a great group of friends and family in our absence. After his arrival, it became clear that from that day forward being a mother was my priority in life.

I've learned so much about myself and relished watching my firstborn grow into the wonderful little boy he is today. He is just as beautiful and breathtaking to me today as he was five years ago. As much as he is able to push me and test me, he is equally able to fill me with such love and pride. I have such a fierce love for my son, Aidan Riley, the fiery Scorpio. My mini-me, my little soul mate.

Happy Birthday, Aidan. I look forward to celebrating your birth all week!

Yahoo! It's time to go to Nana's House!

Rocking out with my cousins, Adam and Seth.

Birthday bash at the bowling alley. Aidan scored a sweet 49!

Awesome! A V-Smile from Nana and Papa. Sean is crazy about the Toy Story game from Aunt Tanya.

Making a wish for more birthday fun!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Another Short Blog Break!

We are going to visit my family this weekend. Doug is going to display his hot licks as a guitar god for the legendary Puke Weasel in Manhattan on Saturday night. Then he gets a dose of reality Sunday and Monday by working on my sister's sheetrock. No, that's not music, he's going to be sanding and mudding drywall!

We will do a little birthday celebrating for Aidan while we are there, so Aidan is pumped to get on the road! He told me this morning that he doesn't want to go to school, he's ready for it to be NanaTime!

Since I will be outtie for a bit, I thought I'd share another funny Aidan story to last you a few days.

Last weekend, Doug, Aidan and I stayed up till 10 watching a movie. After it ended, I went to use the restroom while Doug and Aidan snuggled by the heat vent for a minute. When I headed back in to the room, Doug said "Can you change the tv channel!"

I looked over at the tv, as did Aidan to see what the urgency was, and....

boom chica boom boom.....

There was a Skinamax (aka Cinamax soft porn) movie on! YIKES!

I darted into the room to grab the remote and Aidan said, "Mommy! You should do that with Daddy!" as the couple shows off the horizontal tango. Doug laughed and said "Do you even know what they are doing?"

Aidan replies with a grin, "No, but it sure looks like FUN!"

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Wild and Crazy Kids!

Here's an Aidan story I've been meaning to share.

For a couple of weeks this summer I had the pleasure of keeping my 7 1/2 year old niece Mackenzie at our house while my brother-in-law was working. Aidan adores Mackenzie, he absolutley idolizes her. Luckily, she isn't sick of the attention and has a lot of fun with him. One afternoon, they decided to play dress up, which usually involves digging in my closet and putting together various outfits then performing a song in them. We had a lot of fun putting together silly looks and when the daddys got home they wanted to show them some outfits, too.

I made a quick run to the store while they were still playing dress up and when I got home, the daddys had some fun photos to show me.

The daddys state that the kids went into the kitchen and loaded up the car on their own then cruised into the living room to show off. Oh MY!

Young and Crunchy!

Aidan got it in his head this week that we HAVE TO make homemade granola bars. I've never made granola bars before and he only really likes the Quaker chocolate chip or Rocky Road ones, so I have no idea why he felt we needed to make our own.

Nonetheless, Doug so thoughtfully printed out a copy of Alton Brown's Granola Bars. I hunted and gathered ingredients at the grocery store and Smith's Market so that we could fulfill his dream of homemade granola bars. I've got a large bag of wheat germ, so I guess I will be exploring additional uses for it before it gets a case of mealy worms.

First, Aidan helped measure and pour the dry ingredients.

Then we toasted our nuts. Oh, and the oats, too. ;)

While the toasting was going on, I melted the sticky ingredients on the stove & Aidan stayed out of the way. He wanted to help pour in the dried fruits, but immediately burnt his finger on the pan and dropped the bag on the stove, so I did that part. I asked him to help pat the mix into the baking pan and you can see he is a bit pouty still over the burnt finger.

Once it was done baking and cooled, I attempted to cut it into bars, but it is so crunchy that it is granola chunks instead of bars. Here is Tyrone on top of Mount Granola.

So far, he hasn't asked to eat one! Doug told him they'd eat one for breakfast tomorrow before school. Next time I hope he gets a hankering for something chocolaty!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Oh yeah, SuperMom...

I forgot to include a photo of my Aidan inspired costume! Here I am, ready to wipe butts, soothe tears, and spoil children with a purse full of candy.

Countdown to Five!

I took a nice long hiatus from blogging, hope I didn't lose all of my readers! The boys had the Thursday and Friday after Halloween off (guess the teachers didn't want those sugar-cracked kids bouncing in their rooms!) I don't find myself able to sit down and concentrate at the computer often when the boys are home. Imagine that!

So now it is Novemeber. This month we get to celebrate Aidan's fifth birthday! He is super excited about it. I thought I'd write a few Aidan-posts in honor of him this month.

We went to WalMart this weekend and he pointed out the two toys he HAS.GOT.TO.HAVE. He wants the Imagnext Pirate Ship because he loves how you can set the pirates up to make them have sword fights and you can hoist the sails & extend the plank. Arrrgh! He also wants some set of guns which I said "no dice!" to. We had it in mind to get him a big boy bike with training wheels since he is getting too tall for the Kettler trike. I'm starting to think that a bike is going to be met with less enthusiam than I'd expect. When we go down the bike aisle, he is only interested in looking at the motorized vehicles. Sorry, kiddo, you need to use some foot power!

So I guess Doug and I need to get on the ball and figure out his gift soon. Especially if it requires assembly!