Saturday, June 29, 2013


Today was cousin JAK's birthday party.  Before we left, LWK was certain that he had to bring his new favorite lovie - Clifford the Big Red Dog.

The party was Harry Potter themed and fabulous (like all of my sister's parties)!  Complete with witches hats on the trees, a mix of potions and broomsticks galore!  The kiddos were so cute and the weather was a bit warm for us Seattlites.  Thank goodness for trees and sandboxes and beer!

Kiddos having fun!
Those blue eyes kill me....
The hat ALMOST fits, Jer!
LWK had his first jelly bean.  A Jelly Belly no less.  He thought they were pretty cool and wasn't even deterred by the buttered popcorn or licorice flavored ones!

Buttered popcorn or earwax flavored?  LWK likes them ALL!
In an effort to get the big boys to look at him, LWK decided to start pouring sand over his head.

Before we left, LWK had to have a bath, and a meltdown.  And then he fell asleep on the way home, which makes me forgive any misbehavior!

Clifford, the Big Red Dog is his new buddy.

The Fashion Nightmare

J got up with LWK this morning (thanks honey!!!) and LWK needed dry pants after a long night and lots of water before going to bed.  This is what the boys came up with:

LWK already has the couch slouch down!

LWK is not impressed (with mom taking pictures again).

Friday, June 28, 2013

Keepin' It Real

One of my friends from Parent/Baby class has a friend who posts photos each Wednesday of the chaos in her house with having a toddler.  She calls it "Keepin' It Real Wednesday."  It is all the stuff that we would normal never post or be proud of.  Think all the toys out at one time, a crazy mess after dinner... You know, the unsavory bits of parenthood.  Well, it isn't Wednesday, but LWK refused to nap today since I kept him up a bit too long running errands and then the "nap window" was closed.  I was folding the laundry, went to the bathroom and came back to this:

Did I do that?????

I give LWK credit though, he had just as much fun piling it back up on the chair when I asked.  It was just too blessed hot to be outside today and I think we were both going stir stir crazy.  Yep, we're keepin' it real here up on The Ridge...

Thursday, June 27, 2013


We met up with the Mork family today for a rainy day playdate at the mall.  They have a great toddler area and it was PACKED on this super humid and rainy Seattle day.  AGM and LWK had a great time climbing, playing, chasing and jumping on all the soft nautical themed structures.

But first, LWK is FASCINATED with this spinning wheel!

AGM and LWK chased each other over and under everything.  Every single photo I took is blurry because they were moving that fast!

And just to give B a heart attack, LWK was very into jumping.  He is that blur in the red shirt, our little daredevil!

And then there was a bit of a scary moment.  Since the area was so packed and there is only one way in and out, B and I were trying not to hover.  Each of us had a moment when our kiddo decided to wander away.  For LWK, he had bonked a bit with another kid and was a bit dazed and confused looking for me and I couldn't get to the other side through all the kids fast enough for him.  A nice lady had stopped him from wandering out and gave me the lowdown on everything that had happened.  So nice to know that moms watch out for other kids too.  It also made me happy that my sis had told me about this:

Children of the 80s probably remember the ID bracelets that our parents had us wear.  I try to not be paranoid, but LWK is just a bit of a wanderer.  I have been trying to help me think outside himself by telling him to "watch for Mommy, you don't want Mommy to get lost," but he just starts having fun and doesn't know his surroundings.  And I hate hovering around him because then he becomes too dependent on me to entertain him.  I got LWK a train one that has our info on it to contact us in case he would wander away and this was the first time I had him wear it.  It gives me some peace of mind to believe in the good of people to help him if he got lost.

The weather got a bit better, so B and I walked the track near the mall.  LWK and ERM fell asleep, AGM did not.  But, when the time came to leave and we were walking by each other, AGM and LWK  were holding hands.  So sweet!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Art Time Win!

LWK hasn't been too into being "an artist."  He has started liking to color a bit, so that has been fun as long as we can keep the crayons on the paper.  Today, while he was napping, I did a toy switch out.  Last Thanksgiving we did a great toy organization so that I could switch out toys for him to play with on a weekly or bi-weekly basis.  I did pretty well with it for a while, but I realized today that LWK has had the same toys out since Spring Break in April.  He has outgrown or gotten bored of a lot of his toys, so I tried to pack away some things he no longer needs or uses and get out some new and different things for him to play with now that we will be home more this summer.

One of the things I got out was the Ikea art easel (the Mala for those of you in the know) that he got from his cousins for his birthday in April.  I've had it folded and tucked behind the bookshelf in our sun room all this time.  I kept thinking he wasn't tall enough, or wasn't interested enough in it.  When he got up from his nap (and surveyed all the new locations of his favorite toys and perused the new ones) he headed straight to the easel and started coloring.  He told me he was drawing a flower.  What do you think???

"LWK's Flower"

Storytime Fail

One of the nice things about being a teacher is that I get to kind of slide into the SAHM world during the summer (for better or worse).  Today we headed to our local (as in three blocks away) library's storytime.  KW and his mom came with us.  LWK is now strong enough to open the door of the meeting room in the library and he was so NOT into sitting, singing or reading - he just wanted to escape.  KW was hungry, so G and I gave up and went for coffee instead.  The boys were happier playing with puzzles and trucks and we kind of got to catch up as we downed our coffee.

The boys are so cute together.  KW has grown so much and is becoming a little chatterbox.  LWK was just crazy and didn't calm down until we got back home.  The hit of the day?  Our doorbell.  Who would have known that we wouldn't have had to leave our front porch to bring joy to these cute little guys!

I think these boys have swagger, how about you???

Monday, June 24, 2013

Plenty of Peaches and PB&J!

We are having a much needed lazy day at home.  It has been rainy and yucky - perfect sleep in weather!  LWK slept until almost 9 this morning!  When I went to check on him, he crawled up on his changing table (one of his many new tricks) and got all curled up and said "potato bug" in the exact same inflection we use with him when he does that when we go to change his diaper.  Pretty darn cute.  And he wanted every one of his lovies from his bed on the changing table too - every time I handed him one he said "hello" and gave the lovie a kiss.  After he got changed, he leaned in and gave me a kiss too.  I love raising a sweet boy.

He loves getting on his tip-toes right now.  He can reach the counters easily, so I find that I keep moving things closer and closer to the center.  There was a peach in the fruit bowl and he saw it and wanted the "apple."  I told him it was a peach, but that he could have it.  He took one bite and his eyes lit up and he said "peach!"  He has pretty much been gnawing on it all morning, surprised by the juicy sweetness.  It is so fun to see him try and like something new!

After his super long nap (almost 3 hours????), I made him a late lunch.  Even though we had tried the peanut butter cookie in April and he has had a few tastes of PB from me, I haven't made him anything that was his very own .  This afternoon he had that American kid lunchbox staple - a peanut butter and strawberry jam sandwich.  He ate the entire thing and LOVED it!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Playdate Season!

I love all the playdates we get to have when school gets out!  Today, my friend and former co-worker M and her little boy, T., came over for a boy playdate.  T and LWK play so well together.  They are both train obsessed and they also loved the LeapFrog laptop!  Thanks for coming to visit us today - we will make it to the park when it is less rainy!

Future Programmers.
When did LWK become all arms and legs???

Friday, June 21, 2013


I had a doctor's appointment this morning to follow up on this whole pneumonia thing, so I took LWK to daycare so I could actually talk to my doctor instead of trying to keep LWK entertained.  She gave me prednisone to help me try to kick this thing before we head out on vacation in a couple of weeks - I am just so tired and still coughing.  The nice part was that I had the rest of the day to do as I wanted - a rarity in mom world.  I got my eyebrows done, went to Ikea and picked out new curtains for the dining room and did that amazing thing called grocery shopping BY MYSELF so that I could read labels and get good deals!

I've been reading a lot about helping toddlers be independent.  I really should let LWK do more for himself, but I have fallen into that trap of being so tired by the end of the day that it is just easier for me to do it or make the decision.  I am making a conscious effort this summer to have him help more - I know he can do it and that he does things to help at daycare.  He already will put his shoes and coat in his bin, put away his toys in the bathtub and take his bowl to the sink after a snack.  This summer I want to work with him on putting his toys away and helping mom more.

Today, as I was unloading the groceries from the car, LWK was right there watching what I was doing.  I had bought a big bottle of cranberry juice and when I picked it up, I remembered a blog post I read about encouraging toddlers to help with groceries.  One of the suggestions was to have them carry something heavy (but unbreakable).  I asked if he wanted to carry the juice - and I told him it was heavy.  His face lit up and he lugged that juice all the way unto the house, with a few breaks along the way.  It was adorable to hear him grunting when he lifted it - my little Hercules!  He was SO PROUD of himself when he got the juice all the way to the living room and set it down on the coffee table.  We will work on putting groceries in the right place another day!

Also, LWK has been having some crazy hair lately.  Now that he actually HAS hair, it is getting thick and wavy.  I like it a little longer, I don't think I want him to have a true little boy haircut right now.  Especially since he is scared of the clippers, he has been getting scissor cuts so it can't be too short.  When I picked him up today, it was sticking up all over the place.  I wonder if we need to start using some "product" in his hair.  What I love, he couldn't care less that he has crazy hair!  Ahh, the joys of having a boy!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Last Day of School (Kinda)

Today was the last official day of school!  Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get all my things done to check out before 4pm, so I will have to go back tomorrow.  For the first time in my 14 years of teaching, I didn't check out on the actual last day of school.  Boo.

But, I did make it to the teacher end of the year party, where I slipped and fell in front of my co-workers in the most graceful manner possible.  The deck was slippery, LWK was running and climbed up on the hot tub cover and seemed to be about to go over the other side.  In my scramble to get him before he fell to a perilous fate on the other side, I slipped and did the splits.  My knee took a pretty good hit and I twisted that same foot/ankle that I have had issues with since the "4th of July Incident of 1999" (David, you remember that don't you???).

BUT, the party was fun.  The Hammonds' brought yummy home brew (that I didn't have a drop of until AFTER I fell, I swear) and LWK made a new friend with a co-worker's daughter while playing washers.  And by "playing washers" I mean dropping them into various holes and retrieving them with the kind of joy that only 2 year olds have. 

I wish it was this easy to make friends as an adult - LWK happily played with all the kids there, if he knew them from daycare or not!

Monday, June 17, 2013

New Grill!

We have had the same, inexpensive, grill since we moved into our house 6 years ago.  It has done it's job, it's nothing fancy, but once I had to start lighting it from below and risk my hair catching on fire, we decided we needed to get a new grill this summer.

We don't have tons of room on our tiny patio, so it couldn't be enormous.  I saw one I liked at Fred Meyer, and it got okay reviews.  But then J found the awesome reviews for the Weber Spirit online.  I know the Genesis is THE grill to have, but it would have taken up our entire patio.  The Spirit has a smaller footprint AND has the same awesome set up as the Genesis.  Cast-Iron grates, an ignitor that holds up, 25 year warrantee...

We bought it at the beginning of the month, but then I had to "season"' the grates.  And then I got sick.  So, two weeks after buying it, we finally tried it out tonight.  Let me say is is AWE-SOME!

The sides fold down, making it even more compact!
Seriously, how cute is it?  It started with one press of the ignitor.  It heated right up to 500 degrees without batting an eye.  It is pretty......

Room to spare!
I made 2 steaks, corn on the cob and a basket full of veggies.  It all fit perfectly and cooked beautifully.  I probably could have put the corn above for it to cook without a problem for more room on the main grill.  The basket was the perfect size for 2, but I think I want the bigger one that would use half the grill so we could do more veggies.

A perfect Father's Day dinner!

Everything turned out great.  J loved the veggies (not usually the part of a meal he raves about).  LWK loved the corn.  The steak was perfectly seared and delish.  Best of all, I don't have to worry about singeing my eyebrows anymore (although we all know they could use any help they could get right now)!  As the resident griller in the family, I AM IN LOVE!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

3rd Father's Day

Happy Father's Day, J!

We have had a nice day just running errands.  LWK was up at 5:30 with Mommy, Daddy got to sleep in since it was his day.  LWK actually fell asleep on the couch at about 9am until a little after 10 when we woke him to say goodbye to Erin.  Then we got ready and went to breakfast.  While we were waiting, LWK practiced his fist bumps and high fives with Dad.  LWK's shirt says "Dad is my Hero."  LWK also chose his hat for the day - it matched perfectly!  They kind of have a mutual admiration society going on!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

A Visitor!

Cousin Erin from Halifax has been in Vancouver for classes and she came to Seattle to visit us this weekend!  The weather has been gorgeous and it was a perfect day to hit the city!

After a long time looking for parking (thanks for braving the driving, J!), we headed to the Aquarium.

LWK loves these big tanks.  He kept saying "The fish swim in the water!

He was even brave and touched a sea star in the touch tank.

Erin showed us how to use one finger!


That's an awfully big fish!
Then we hit the Pike Place Market.  The original Starbucks had a aHUGE line, but we found a German deli that had REAL Fanta!

On the way home, we wanted to show Erin our falls.  We hadn't ever taken LWK and he thought it was pretty cool!

Thanks for coming to visit us, Erin.  We loved sharing our beautiful area with you!