Halloween!!

For photos of Halloween go to:

www.benett.net/halloween

Evrett was Spiderman and Ben was The Incredible Hulk. My favorite part was hearing Ben pronounce “Trick or Treat” as “Chicken Teat”. Also hearing them both ask for candy the minute they got out of bed this morning.

There are new pictures

If you’re interested, then click the link:

www.benett.net/fall-boys

They are from this week so they’re super recent.

In un-related news, I think if I have to hear one more pre-recorded political message either on my voicemail or when I pick up a ringing phone to prevent it waking my children I will probably burn my phone. Or run it over with my car or something. The same goes for tv and radio ads, except I’d obviously destroy my television or car stereo respectively. These are particularly irritating now that I have taken advantage of Colorado’s convenient early voting option and have already cast my ballot.

That is all for today, hope everyone is enjoying their weekend.

Lately

So let’s see, umm we’ve had quite a few ups and downs since my last post. On the up-side Evrett started preschool and loves it, Ross still enjoys his job, Ben is chatting up a storm and adds what seems like 5 words a day to his little vocabulary, and I am enjoying fall weather and some extra one-on-one time with Benett. Downs are Ben STILL wakes up by about 5:30 nearly every morning for no discernible cause, and often wakes his brother before ‘Ehvett’ is really ready to be up. This makes child 1 grumpy all day and makes child 2 need 2 naps instead of 1 even though he’s 20 months old and should be on a solid 1 nap schedule. Also the advent of preschool seems–sadly for Mommy–to have coincided with Evrett’s new argumentative stage; the child argues about EVERYTHING! It’s really quite annoying and if he wasn’t so darn cute I might give up on the whole parenthood thing completely. And of course, little Benny-jojo(yes I realize this is a sickeningly cutsie name yet I cannot help myself) imitates brother at every turn except he screams more because he cannot yet string his vocab together enough to say “NO! I DO NOT HAVE TO STOP TOUCHING THE ELECTRICAL OUTLET MOMMY!!” Therefore we are currently in a zero tolerance, many many many many time outs per day season. I do wish super nanny or Dr Phil or whoever is the current ‘it’ expert would send out tips for what to do when consistency for 5 or 6 weeks(or 8 months in Ben’s case) in a row is still not having an effect. The whole “stick to your guns, keep it consistent and they’ll learn you mean it” thing just isn’t cutting it.

I keep trying to tell myself this type of stubborn-ness is what makes little boys into men who aren’t afraid to fight for what they want but at the moment I’d be totally content with raising lilly-livered nancy boys if it just meant they’d do what I say once in awhile!!! **sigh**

At any rate, they are still adorable and seem healthy and well. And they do, generally speaking, behave well for other people when we are not around, which is nice. My Mom always said if we were ‘good’ for company and the like she figured she’d done something right. I hope she knows what she’s talking about. 🙂

As for random kiddie anecdotes I have the following:(CAUTION diaper related story to follow)

1. The other day Ben had developed a bit of diaper rash that was not going away as quickly as I liked. So one sunny afternoon I left the diaper and pants off and let him play in the backyard in just a shirt and some sunscreen figuring fresh air was good for drying it out. I came inside briefly to check something and was delayed an extra minute or 2–Evrett was still inside for some reason too or I guess he’d have told me what happened. Anyway Ben comes in the house waving his hands at me and giving me a strange look and saying nothing. Just as I’m about to grab his tiny little fingers I notice a distinctly rank odor coming from said fingers.

me: “Ben why do your hands stink like poop? Did you put your hands in your butt?”

Ben: Shakes head and says “No butt”

me: Stop to think for a minute and get disgusted all over again. “Benett!!!! Did you poop in the yard and then touch it???!!!!!” (ewww ewww ewww, and blearrrggghhh)

Ben: nodding vigorously and holding out soiled hands ” ‘Boop, touch-it. Icky?”

I will spare the clean up details except to say that I should have re-diapered him before I held his stinky little behind right against my shirt to hold his hands under the faucet and wash his hands. So a new shirt for me and the patio washed down and life moved on. Ugh. Toddlers are just un-sanitary.

Evrett is currently obsessed with being older than his brother, and sorting out what that means for the future. We have a lot of conversations like this one from the other day.

Evrett: “Mommy how old will I be when Ben is 25?”

me: “27”

Evrett: “Well how old will Ben be when I am 25?”

me: “He’ll be 23 because you’re 2 years older.”

Evrett: “Well Mommy, Mike says when I’m 25 then brother and I will be best friends but that is not actually true, because when I’m 25 I still want to be best friends with Will.”

Ohhhh, sad for baby brother but so cute that he wants to keep his current friend forever. Hope ol’ Will doesn’t get sick of him before then!!

That’s all I’ve got tonight, hope to write more soon.

Really????

So the other day Evrett woke up from a much needed nap and went into the bathroom–this is part of our wake-up routine so I left him alone. Several minutes later when he had not emerged I knocked on the door and peeked in; there was Evrett, dutifully undressed, but not using the toilet. Instead he was laying on our bathmat sucking his thumb and holding his bear–buck nekked.

“What are you doing buddy? It’s time to go potty now.” No response.

“Evrett! you need to get up and go potty right now.” (much more sternly)

And then my 3 1/2 year old, who still sucks his thumb and sleeps with a ragged-y teddy bear answered without missing a beat, “Ok, Player.”

I have no clue where it came from, but apparently he’s now a teenager in training. And all I can think to say is “Really? really, really?” Which seems woefully inadequate somehow. Why are little kids so weird?

MN pics

Here’s some shots of the boys and I on our trip to MN. I’ll add a few NY shots later too! We celebrated my brother Brian’s birthday while we were there so a lot of these are from that gathering.

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this is Ben hugging the stuffed “Sparky” Grandma got as a gag gift.

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We love our cousin Jacob!

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mmmmmmm Cupcake!

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Uncle “Adoo” is a big big BIG favorite, can you tell?

And here’s one of my favorites:

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Uncle Brian is so gracious to let them ‘help’ open presents.

Things I have found in my bed . . .(rated G, I promise)

So over the last few months my little darlings have left us a number of surprises, all of which are ridiculous.

* light sabers, blue or green or both

*Evrett’s pajamas

*Benetts pajamas

*foam ‘pirate’ swords

*a well wrapped, only wet(non-poop) diaper–thanks for not throwing that out!

*Mr Bear

*Mr Puppy

*Evrett’s blankets

*half empty baby bottles–usually dripping on my side of the sheets

*various toy cars

*a nerf gun

*Mr Potato Head

*Shoes, generally Evrett’s or Ben’s

*sippy cups

*goldfish, both crushed and uncrushed

*Bailey the wonder dog

*markers

*drumsticks

*a tambourine

*blocks

*assorted stuffed animals and pacifiers

*and just the other night, at 2 am, who should appear and crawl right in blankets and all? Evrett, of course. Saying emphatically “I just need to snuggle my Daddy, Mommy so I came in.” He then proceeded to climb right up on Ross’ sleeping form and lay bodily on him until Ross woke up enough to move him back onto the bed.

Now I ask you, readers, what kind of weirdo kid wakes up in the dead of night, thinks to himself “I want to snuggle” and then actually has the presence of mind to gather all his blankets and animals and drag them along to our room so he “wouldn’t be cold”. I’m lucky if I can accurately remember my own name at that time of night, much less think through blankets and teddy bears and climbing into someone else’s bed. But he’s a clever little monkey; he knows we aren’t willing to get out of bed and carry him back to his room at 2 in the morning either. How wonderful it will be in a few months when Ben is big enough to follow him. :) Its a good thing they’re both so darn cute.

On a related topic, Benett is moving into his thinking/problem solving phase. He proved this just yesterday morning. When he woke up he called loudly for Mommy and then Daddy for several minutes each per his usual impatient little self. Since neither of us was inclined to leap out of bed and entertain him at 6:15 he quieted for a few moments and then began hollering out “BIIIIIIKEEE!!!” Which is his way of calling our good friend Mike, who is staying with us temporarily. Luckily, Mike is a sound sleeper and was not roused by this demand. Shortly thereafter he succeeded in waking up his brother(since they share a room) and was happy to make faces at ‘budder’ and throw stuffed animals at him until we came to get him up. When these 2 get a little bigger and better able to coordinate I think Ross and I are in for some trouble.

Tips for long car trips involving small children . . .

1. EARPLUGS!!!!! I’m sure its unsafe from a driving perspective, but 15-16 hours of nearly constant screaming is almost enough to push this Mommy over the edge. But we survived and enjoyed our trip so it was worth it.

2. Food. If you forget(like me) to make the sandwiches you meant to feed your children on the return drive, they will have to fill up on raisins, goldfish and M&Ms. This requires an awful lot of the above, and gives them a sugar high while strapped into car seats. Delightful.

3. Patience. While its true you can make better time when you don’t have to stop every hour for potty breaks or to sort out a tantrum, its also true that you’ll get there eventually and it would be better not to lose your temper and have to apologize for it for the remaining hours of the trip. So perhaps patience is only needed until you are less than 100 miles from your destination?

4. Caffeine. And lots of it–for yourself not the children.

5. If you can arrange for a vivid lightning storm for the last 3 hours of the drive, its helpful. Lots of visual stimulation to prevent falling asleep.

That about sums it up I think. Although a camera for the actual visit would have been a good choice also. Hopefully the fam will come through and send me some pics they took so I can post them here.

Father’s Day

For Father’s day this year we took things easy. First, the boys and I let Ross sleep in–a rare occurrence for either of us. I kept the kids distracted until after 9 which is at least 2 hours later than parenthood normally allows!! Then we had some special Father’s day breakfast donuts(the trip to get them was part of how I kept them quiet while he slept!) and went to a local classic car show for a few hours. When we got home the kids went to nap and I tried to figure out how to get the yummy dinner Ross chose made in time for us to eat before church. Since our church meets from 5-6:30pm and is a 25 min drive its always a challenge to make something and then get it eaten between nap and when we leave. In the end Ross decided to go with a new approach: the boys had mac & cheese before church and Ross and I made steak after we came home and they went to sleep! So it was a late dinner, but we actually got to talk to each other like adults, which was a nice change. I think we may do that again next time we want an in-house date night.

As part of our Father’s day celebration I’m going to list a few things I love about Ross’s fatherhood skills and then a photo of him and the boys we took yesterday.

Here goes :

Things I love about Ross as a Dad

The way the boys run to him every day when he comes home.

Watching him wrestle and play with them, and all the giggling that ensues.

How hard he works at showing them he cares.

The way both our sons LOVE to snuggle with him, and never want to let go.

Listening to him pray for our sons and their futures.

How hard he works at providing for us as a family.

His giant smile whenever he sees Evrett or Ben.

Watching him teach them things, and how much he loves to help them discover the world.

Hearing him sing them to sleep at night.

Hearing Evrett say “I do love you Mommy, but Daddy is my favorite, ok?”

The fact that he can cook them dinner, change their diapers and put them to bed without my help whenever its necessary.

The fact that he does those things sometimes even when it isn’t absolutely necessary, just to give me a break.

Knowing he is completely capable of handling things whenever I’m not around.

His excitement over the goofy little things small children do to make us laugh.

Just his overall ‘Awesome-ness’!!!!!!

And that sums it up fairly well I think. I did 2 pics, since we couldn’t get one where both boys are smiling at the same time!

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The boys are wearing their special Father’s day shirts, which read “My Dad Rocks”. Very appropriate for us, I think.

Photos

here’s a few new shots of my little monkeys, including a really cute shot of Evrett telling his great-grandfather a story. (We love Poppy!) Enjoy!crw_9223.jpg

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A new favorite person for Evrett is his cousin Dave Hansen, b/c he ‘runs super fast and races me’.

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Muscle Man!!!

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Ben is showing off his smirk here.

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This one of Daddy and Ben is priceless; that pseudo tough guy look on my sensitive little Benett just cracks me up.

The classic “I’m not touching you!”

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And yes, they are wearing matching shirts because Ben is finally big enough for his awesome Australia shirt his Grandma brought him when he was born. Evrett still fits his and I wanted to see them both in them at the same time before he grows out of it.

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Nap time shenanigans

Today Evrett out-did himself in the naughty/hilarious category. This is a 2 part episode so stick with us!

First he was grumpy about napping because we’d been at the park all morning and he fell asleep in the bike trailer about 2 blocks from the house. This made him think he had an excuse to be awake and ‘have more lunch’ instead of going directly to bed. I over-ruled him, but allowed him to have his little water bottle in bed for a few minutes to have a drink. This was my first mistake. . . Not 10 minutes after I left his room (and about 2 mins after Ben finally quit fussing and went to sleep) out pops Evrett saying he can’t sleep because he’s soaking wet.

“Why are you soaking wet? did you pee in your bed?”

“No Mommy I poured my water on my head so I could be like Moe”

FYI Moe is a ‘Doodlebop’ from the disney channel show of the same name who pulls a rope every episode and gets water dumped on his head. He also plays drums and breakdances which is why Evrett thinks he sooooooooooooooooo cool. Ughhhh.

So anyway we change his wet clothes and pull wet blankets and Mr. Bear off the bed and I lay him in our bed to take his nap. I tell him he MUST take his nap now, and lay quietly and NOT play or otherwise monkey around to keep himself awake. I used my very best “Mommy is serious and you better listen or it will be very very bad” type voice. He promised to go to sleep.

Then I made my second and third mistakes: I actually believed he’d behave, and I neglected to check the room for any objects he might find too exciting to ignore. About 20 minutes later I had finished a few things and decided to check on him before I sat down to have a snack. He’d been pretty quiet so I assumed he’d be out cold; that will teach me to assume things. I open the door to the overpowering aroma of Old Spice deodorant, an open container of it laying on the bed and Evrett quite obviously in the middle of putting his underwear back on.

Me: “WHAT are you doing?” I am genuinely confused at this point since I cannot conceive of why he’d need to be naked even if he was ‘using’ Daddy’s deodorant on the sly.

Evrett: “I just don’t wanna be stinky Mommy–and I need gel in my hair like Daddy but it won’t open”(Thank goodness for hair gel with difficult lids)

While biting the insides of my cheeks very hard to keep from laughing I point out that deodorant is for armpits, and not our ENTIRE body–which lesson was much more quickly learned when the portion he applied to his forehead(seriously kid? who does that?) began to make his eyes sting and we had to use his teddy bear to wipe it off. And now I need to change our–freshly washed might I add–sheets because my fourth mistake was taking away the toiletries and then leaving him in the room to take his nap. Now the bedding has soaked up the scent from his liberally slathered legs, arms, and torso and reeks like an overzealous gym teacher–double Ugghhh. Oh well, such is life with boys.

And here’s some pictures just cuz they make posts more interesting . . .

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Those, fairly obviously I guess, are of St. Patrick’s Day, Easter and a hike we took in March. Good night all.