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16 Oct

This is pretty much what we hear from Ben anytime something doesn’t involve screens these days.  “This is bow-ing”, “Bow-ing”, “You’re just trying to make me have a bad day”, “Now I’m having a bad day now”, and so on.  Lest you think Ben’s life is nothing but misery, once he’s cut off he goes into a fit for about 30 seconds then he’s fine.  One of the things you have to give Ben, he doesn’t hold on to stuff for long.

We are fully into another year– Eli’s second grade year, Ben’s last year of preschool before kindergarten and things are going well.  Eli is in advanced math and reading at school and is in line to get tested for the “smart kid” schools although truth be told, we likely will not switch him even if he qualifies. We’ve told him the tests are just to see where he is and that the decision to switch is up to him.  We’ve talked to a lot of parents of kids who either have kids at these schools or who have toured them and they all say the same thing–the kids are stressed.  It’s an insanely competitive environment of the kids of tech people and the kids don’t seem happy.  If Eli does test well, his school can accommodate him to a degree and anything over than that, we will outsource.  Not really willing to risk his emotional development for academic when he’s not particularly a competitive kid and has been very adamant that he wants to stay with his friends.  If we can accommodate his learning satisfactorily without sacrificing anything, I’d rather he’d stay where he is.  Part of his lack of competitiveness is that he’s so used to being automatically good at what he does (barring physical stuff) and he and I have talked a lot about that.  We’ve talked about the importance of him challenging himself in areas he’s had to work to excel.  I think he understands.

Ben is working hard on reading these days.  He’s got all the sounds down and is just working on putting them together.  He’s very into writing lately and will frequently ask us to spell words so he can write them down.  An unfortunate side effect of this is that Eli will often turn this to (for him) great comedic effect as evidenced today by Ben bringing us a sheet of paper that was clearly his repeated attempts to write the word “butt”.  Luckily for Ben, he hasn’t quite gotten the hang of writing words left to right and instead his letters are usually all over the place.  We spent a good while torturing him while he obviously wanted us to say “You wrote ‘butt’!” and then be upset about it.  Instead we just kept reading whatever he wrote which actually was “btt” or “bttu” and it drove him crazy. Then I went and had conversation #45624 with Eli that if Ben goes to preschool and writes the word “butt”, it’s going to be his that’s on the line.

Things have been going well around here.  I’ve entered a half marathon for March.  After Ragnar, I pretty much stopped running entirely and now all my running buddies are off running without me.  It’s a social outlet I’m starting to miss even if I do have to run to be a part of it.  Ragnar was really fantastic in that it solidified some work friendships that had been moving along at a snail’s pace and now several of us spend a lot of time together.  It’s especially nice that they don’t work normal schedules either so now I have friends to hang out with on Wednesdays and Thursdays instead of it just being me and Ben alone all day. They have older kids in school but they are always fine with Ben tagging along and Ben is enjoying hanging out in coffee shops having hot chocolate and a muffin once a week.  Nonetheless, I’ve got to get exercise back in and it seems the only way I’ll do it consistently is if I have a race to train for.  So back on track starting tomorrow.

Our schedule is heavy these days–swim for Eli Wednesday evenings, swim for Ben Thursday mornings, chess club for Eli Tuesday before school, gymnastics for Ben on Wednesday mornings.  Add in to that school, work schedules, homework, and probably someone should cook something at some point and a lot of days feel pretty hectic.  Today was really great though–it was gray and rainy most of the day so every single person in this household has spent the day in their pjs.  We watched the Seahawks game, we played some video games, we worked on spelling “butt”, we practiced our spelling words, we played a few rounds of King of Tokyo (really fun board game Eli discovered at school) and a lot of wrestling.  It was nice to not have a lot to do.

Have you guys heard about the Broadway play “Hamilton”?  It’s kind of hard to avoid hearing about it. It’s pretty much the most acclaimed Broadway musical in about a million years.  They have a soundtrack to it and a friend kept telling me I needed to listen to it so he loaned me the CDs.  I played them one day in the car and figured the kids would ask to turn it off about 20 seconds in but they are ADDICTED.  It’s a musical about Alexander Hamilton and the founding of the country.  It’s jam packed with rap and hip hop and it’s just a delight to listen to.  It’s also started a lot of really fascinating conversations with the kids about how America came to be America.  In the last month, we’ve had a lot of talks about King George, Marquis de Lafayette, Aaron Burr, and the reasons why they wanted independence from England in the first place.  I admit I’ve had to do a LOT of googling to brush up on my history but it’s really amazing that a musical is making the kids so interested in history.  It’s also pretty cute to hear Ben walking around the house shouting “HERE COMES THE GENERAL!” (from a song about George Washington).

For a small taste, here’s “Guns and Ships” which the boys (and I) are just in love with the last few days:

Man, it’s been so long since I’ve posted on here I can’t figure out how to upload a link.  Let me figure this out….Guns and Ships

Ok, there we go.

Video catch up.  Man, I do not take nearly as many videos as I used to.  Mostly that’s because whenever the kids see me recording they automatically start acting like fools thereby ruining whatever nice moment I was hoping to capture.  However, I’m going to rewrite history and tell myself that it’s because I was being mindful and enjoying the moment instead of playing with my phone…


Time for waffles!

Older brothers. Sheesh.

Andy and Eli are terrible.

Ben getting the hang of the balance bike

Ben writing his name!

Look at that.  It no longer embeds a video still of the YouTube.  These are the things you learn when you update once a year.

As everyone knows, the Pac NW Smiths are descending upon Louisiana for Christmas.  We will be there for a nice healthy stay (a little longer than “after 3 days, guests or fish go bad” for my dad) but not so long that I think we will exhaust anyone.  We will fly down Dec. 20th and fly back Dec. 29th.  It will be nice for all of us to be in the same place for the holiday.  It’s kind of a banner year in that Andy and I are both off for both holidays!  I realize due to scheduling it’s unlikely to happen again for another 5-7 years so I’m going to enjoy it.

Ben’s got another cold.  He’s definitely the more cold prone of the two–Eli rarely got sick and when he did it was more of an actual illness (usually fever) requiring time off whereas Ben usually just gets about every cold going around.  I wasn’t too surprised by this one (he finished his last one about a month ago) since at the Cub Scout meeting Tuesday he pretty much spent the whole time trying to blow up a balloon, spitting it out of his mouth when he tried to blow it up, having it hit the floor, then putting it right back in.  I took the first two away and then at some point you just have to accept that kids will build resistance.  The silver lining is that for all of his colds, he never really feels badly.  He will be hacky and snotty as all get out but energetic and insisting he feels fine.

He’s moved into Mountain Room at Small Faces and seems to be enjoying it.  He’ll be starting kindergarten next year at North Beach with Eli if everything goes well.  The housing market in Seattle is kind of insane right now–it’s definitely a seller’s market and even rental housing is seeing astronomical increases.  We are hoping our landlords don’t decide to cash in on this but we are making plans in case they do.  I’m inclined to think they won’t since they have generally been happy with us and also like stable renters but it’s a bit nerve-wracking not knowing what might happen.  Their school is so fantastic that I hate the idea of having to switch.  Oh well, it will all work out in the end.

Here’s where I say lots of hopeful things about posting more often but as always, I will do my best.  We are definitely looking forward to the next month–for Halloween, Eli is going as Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes and Ben is going as a skeleton (same costume as last year, love that kid).  I have to work Halloween night but Andy will be off which is good balance as he’s had to work the last few.  Then Eli has his birthday and his party the next day at Playdate Seattle which should be a lot of fun.  They have what is basically a two story habitrail for kids which they love playing in and there are a ton of big screen TVs for the grown ups to watch football.  I think everyone will have a great time.

Have a wonderful fall.


Video catch up, the understatement

18 Oct

Really, internet? A year? It’s been a year since I have uploaded videos? I just don’t even believe this but this blog tells me it’s so.


Early morning Ben chatting:

This was at the Tulip Festival in April

The kids and Ananda at Deception Pass for our camping trip this summer.

Ben sings his ABCs (sort of)

The Berry Patch kids at a backyard BBQ having fun in a too small pool

Ben riding the Weehoo with Andy and Eli

Recap of Great Wolf Lodge

This one has made me cry from laughing so many times. There’s a youtube guy who makes Minecraft videos and the boys watch it all the time. At the end, there’s a bit of dance music and as soon as it starts, the boys go into house dancing mode.

Watching the movie Home

Ben in the car at the Clark County Fair

Eli on the Monster Slide at the Clark County Fair

The S’s of a three year old are hard to resist.

It’s hard to blow out candles with a mouthful of candy.

Opening a birthday present from Lolly

Ben jumping on Daddy (I have a cold in this, I sound terrible)

Sneaking in on him in the tub

Wish I had a dime for every time I heard this:

Going to leave this as a video entry and will do some text shortly. 🙂

Freeze! Go! (but not really, please freeze)

14 Nov

Oh my. If I could freeze time right now, I completely would. Ben is two, wonderfully, gloriously, two. That has all the inherent two-ness involved, of course, but he has reached the delicious stage where he is amazingly verbal yet still has the very Two way of pronouncing things and declaring whatever is running through his very Two brain. He is ridiculously cute. We thought (knew) he was already cute but I can’t tell you how many times a day Andy or I will talk with him or he will run up to us to tell us something he’s discovered and we just look at each other and remark on how absolutely delicious he is these days. He’s finally at an age where he and Eli can play–really play- together and although there is much injustice and screaming in the household over various and perceived slights, they have as many moments where they delight in each other and make the best playmates. I can only see their ability to play together improving (and getting louder) and it’s just amazing. Right now they mostly bond over pillow fights, hide and seek, and Ben copying whatever Eli does (this is not always so awesome, parentally speaking).

Ben is just bursting every day with new words and thoughts. He always wants you to “Yook!” “Yook what I doing!” He wakes us up every morning declaring “I get out of bed! No seeping, Mommy! I want a waffle/cereal bar/cereal/bacon!!” Most days, he eats like a horse. Although he continues to miss school and is looking forward to going to Small Faces, he seems to enjoy his time at home which is heavy on the local playgrounds, long walks to take Eli to or pick him up from the bus stop, or helping out around the house. There is one huge puddle that is pretty much always there on the walk to the bus stop and we routinely spend a good 20 minutes there both in the morning and in the afternoon so he can throw rocks. This week, it’s been frozen in the mornings which has made the puddle even more exciting than usual and has led to long talks about why the ice is gone when we go back in the afternoon to get Eli.

As Ben was rapidly outgrowing his crib, we decided to get some bunk beds for their room. I spent a few weeks compulsively refreshing craigslist and we finally got an amazing set for $200, easily a $650 set if we were to buy it in the store. Go Craigslist! Although Ben is slightly bummed over his lower bunk status, we set it up on Tuesday night. Eli loves being king of the mountain and Ben really seems to love being in a big boy bed. I will either get around to posting his crib on Craigslist or we will have a garage sale next summer since our garage is filling with things we really need to get rid of but I think we could make some money off of them in the process. I expected to be a little sad that our crib days are behind us but I’m really glad it’s done. I love (other people’s) babies and I sure loved my babies but big kids are just so much fun. The baby days were amazing but it’s so great to be able to really communicate with them and do family stuff together where everyone can participate.

Halloween was super fun with the boys. Ben totally got into it and although he had some trouble keeping up with the big kids, he got into it in a way that Eli couldn’t at two because he didn’t have an example to follow. He mostly went up to people’s houses and would just hold his bag out or if they let him take his treat, he’d just keep taking and taking until they would look up at me and I’d have to remind him to knock it off. It was so much fun. Although Andy had to work that night, he arranged to go in an hour late so he could go with us. After the trick or treating, Andy went to work and the boys and I came home to watch the Nightmare before Christmas and the boys ate their weight in candy. Such a fun night.

Eli’s birthday was great as well. We did Remlinger Farms and on his actual birthday took cupcakes to his class so they could have a little celebration for him. That night we went to the Hi-Life (his request) and Ananda joined us. Eli requested a “Halloween cake that is chocolate with orange icing and looks like Halloween”. I feel like I delivered:


I just checked and I haven’t uploaded videos since May. I say this with all seriousness, if you’d like to see more videos, please text/email and remind me to upload. I am always recording videos of them and I usually (mistakenly) think I’ve updated more recently than I have! I do not mind ONE BIT if anyone sends me a reminder that it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. Although I can’t update with the frequency that I used to, if the blog is still something people look at and not just my own baby book, I really could benefit from a friendly nudge now and then. Knowing that others look and enjoy is very motivating.

Developmental info: Eli’s got a second shark tooth coming in. It’s the other bottom front and we’ve set him to wiggling the baby tooth but it doesn’t really feel loose at all. Ben’s got pretty much the whole alphabet down! It seems to have happened overnight–a month or so ago, he had five or six down now he’s whipping them all out on command. Unfortunately, he has ZERO interest in doing this when he’s being taped so I can’t provide a video but it’s stinking impressive! He loves going to the library (so many books to pull off shelves!) but still not as into reading although he does really like the Little Blue Truck series. He has no interest in sitting on the potty (It’s too big, Mommy!) although I suspect that will change once he starts Small Faces in January and has a little peer pressure. Eli continues to read up a storm and can read somewhat comfortably at a second grade level and can read a fair portion of what the internet says is a third grade level. He’s doing a lot of math at school and really enjoys asking about numbers and several times a day is showing off his addition/subtraction skills.

We enrolled him in some karate classes at the community center but I’m less than impressed with them. The classes don’t really seem geared towards kids at all and the instructor has what Andy referred to as “the personality of a dead fish”. He’s not very good at engaging the three kids in the class. They also started off with instructions in Japanese (without explaining to the kids what they were saying and just expected them to follow them, which they eventually did but then the instructor seemed annoyed that it took them a minute to catch on). I guess this is what happens when you pay $9 a class. They started straight in with punches and kicks with instructions like “If you want to knock the wind out of someone, this is where you hit” and things like that. I’m not totally comfortable with that. So I’ve been calling around to other places that have kid-centered classes to try to find a better fit.

So that’s all for now. Here’s some videos to help pass the time:

I have a loud, awesome house:

Pillow fight:

This is from Remlinger Farms. It cracks me up because Ben is so very two and over it quite quickly whereas Eli really struts his stuff.

Life with boy children, it’s so spitty.

The part where he closes his eyes to wish gives me the warm fuzzies.

The cutest Power Ranger

What’s the point of 2 year olds if you can’t have any fun?

Video Catch Up and Mother’s Day 2014

10 May

Story time with Donald Duck

Send advil, please.  The screaming! The screaming!

Ben masters the ladder to the fort

Strange baby–who is that?

Wabah, mommy!


Bonding over skittles

Just a little taste of what’s been going on over the last few months. Tomorrow is Mother’s Day and not a moment passes that Andy and I aren’t aware of the phenomenal, amazing examples we had for parents. We only hope that we can do so well. Andy is on night shifts this weekend and had a fencing tournament today. He took last night off so he wouldn’t have to fence on an hour or two of sleep (something he has tried before and the results were about what you would expect, discouraging is probably the most gentle word). He left the tournament and made it home in time to help with dinner for the boys before going to work so I don’t have a doubt that he will sleep most of tomorrow and wake shortly before time to go to work again in the evening. At first, I started to have a little pity party–poor me, I won’t get anything or do anything special for Mother’s Day since Andy will be asleep/working for all of it–but then I had a little moment with Eli tonight that set me straight.

For quite a long time, when Eli would get out of the bathtub, I would wrap him in a towel and sit him on my lap and we’d just cuddle for a few minutes. He always seemed to love this as did I but in the last year, I don’t know, we just stopped doing it. Part of it is getting him to do more “big boy” things–getting himself out of the tub and getting dressed, getting him more self-sufficient since Ben is usually about and requires attending to, etc. Tonight, Ben was already in bed by the time Eli got out of the bath. For no particular reason, I hung around in the bathroom and helped him get out. As he jumped out, I took a towel and wrapped him up and he jumped on my lap. He gave me a big snuggle and whispered in my ear “I miss this!” and I was again reminded how fortunate I am to spend these moments with my sweet children. 

So tomorrow, instead of feeling sorry for myself (for I really have no reason to), I’m going to have a wonderful day with the two little guys I have been lucky enough to have and I’m going to count my blessings. There is no better gift for Mother’s Day. 



Video catch up

9 Jan

I also have a mess of pictures to post.  I plan to get to that over the weekend.

A boy and his harmonica

Maybe baby! (he says that is what penguins say)

Brotherly love (not)

That harmonica was $1.50 well spent

Bouncy house fun


3 Jan

I think of posts to write quite often but somehow I get sidetracked somewhere between thinking about them and actually writing them down.

It’s Friday night. Andy just left to go to a small fencing tournament (foil, I think)…it’s 7 PM. I think it starts at 8. He was off all day and got some work done on the garage (the garage is our never ending project ever since I ran into the door a year and a half ago) door. I got off work at 4:30 PM, drove home, switched out cars, and went to pick up both boys. I got home, we fed the boys, Eli goes downstairs after dinner to work on Legos while Ben gets a bath. Eli is generally against sharing a bath with Ben on principle. Every now and then we’ll just tell him tough, you have to share the bath and he deals with it but he doesn’t like it. Ben gets a bath and once he’s post-bath and doing his usual pre-bedtime “What can I destroy?” tour of the house, Eli gets ready for his bath.  Eli goes in, Ben goes to bed. Eli will get out in about 15 minutes and then get a little ice cream and two stories and then it’s bedtime for him as well.  THEN the real fun begins. I get to eat my dinner (leftovers but good ones–we’ve been cooking a lot the last few days so there’s lot of variety in our leftovers, score!) and then fold some laundry while watching Dr. Who. I have an introductory/free class at a Crossfit gym here at 8 tomorrow morning so I’ve got to get to bed early.

Ben finally dropped (or rather, we stopped giving it to him) his only remaining bottle four days ago.  It’s kind of horrible that we were still giving him one but we were. He’d wake up about 5 AM every morning and we’d give him a bottle, then he’d go back to sleep for another three hours or so. Since Eli wakes up at 6:30 AM but is pretty self-sufficient so long as you leave out breakfast and some cartoons for him, it was really hard to give up that extra bit of sleep.  The first day, Ben woke up at 5, wanting to eat. For some inexplicable (but hilarious) reason, Andy got up and cooked him two scrambled eggs, fed him, then put him back in bed and he slept until 8 as usual.  I pointed out that this sort of not only killed the whole idea of losing the bottle in the first place but actually made things more difficult and Andy agreed he had no idea what he was doing. Complaining, hungry child=Andy autopilot. Funny. The next two days, Ben woke up at 6:15 AM (yes!) and was just up for the day which is pretty much what I figured we were in for. Today, he slept until 7:30!  He squawked for about a minute at 5:30 AM but went back to sleep.  I’m not holding my breath but it was at least nice for today.

So aside from his crib, Ben is practically in college *sniff*. He walks, he uses utensils (fairly well), he doesn’t drink from bottles, and we are seriously going to take away his pacifiers in about a week. He only gets it to sleep but they still need to go. He’s a constant chatterbox and we’re actually starting to understand some of it.  “UH! UH!” (UP!) We were looking at the 100 First Words book and Hand Hand Fingers Thumb that were favorites of Eli’s. Ben likes them both as well but they endured so much abuse from Eli that they didn’t last long with Ben, he found their weak points and pretty much shredded both.  I’m going to run to Barnes & Noble after the gym tomorrow to pick up new copies.  He’s getting a little better about reading–he will sometimes sit for an entire book now although we generally still have to break them up.  He does request books now so that’s something.

Ben is doing great at Berry Patch. They close at the end of August so I’ve put him on the wait list for childcare at hospital. We will only need it Sept-Jan but hopefully it will come through in time. He’s on a bit of a hitting streak.  He gets slap happy when he’s frustrated but it’s also quite obvious that he’s hitting just because he’s seeing what will happen.  He will say, “No!” (sounds like “Nyah!”) and give you a little swipe but then usually start his kissing “mmmmm” sound and want to kiss where he hit you.  He’s so conflicted.  Eli automatically yells NOOOOO at the TOP of his lungs whenever Ben is doing something he doesn’t like. The other day Andy and I were in our room and we heard Ben toddle in the living room and presumably start messing with Eli because a little back and forth started.  “NO!” “NYAH!” “NO!” “NYAH!” and so on for a good two minutes.  It was HILARIOUS.  Particularly since neither of them seemed to inclined to come drag us into it and Ben was holding his own with Eli.  We still have no idea what it was about but I guess they settled it.

I’m signed up for another half marathon at the end of March, the Mercer Island half. Nothing to write home about, just something to sign up for so I will run regularly. I want to do the Hot Chocolate 15K as well on 3/2 but that mostly depends if I can find a sitter.

Christmas! Christmas was great. Eli was very, very excited about it. Although the elf did little to improve his behavior over the course of the month, the immediate days leading up to Christmas were delightful. Kid must have sensed some sort of Santa near because he was laying it on THICK.  He was all, “how are you this morning, my majesty?” and “You look beautiful, my majesty!”  I don’t know why he has settled on “my majesty” but when he’s trying to butter me up, that’s what he calls me.  It’s pretty stinking cute. We put out cookies on Christmas Eve and each opened a present. The little boys went to bed and then Andy, Will, and I set to playing Santa. On Christmas Day, Rachal and Matt came over and we had “the feast” as Eli calls it. It was a very nice, laid back day.  At this point, we’ve pretty much de-holidayed the house except for the lights are still up outside–those come down tomorrow.

A few quick videos, Ben loves giving kisses

Saying goodbye

Birthdays, holidays, big boys, oh my!

15 Nov

Well, Eli is officially five years old.  Although I can believe it, I still can’t really wrap my head around it. We had originally scheduled his party for Sunday, 10/27 but the whole preceding week turned out to be a Plague Upon My House Affecting Only Males (again, they are the weaker sex! Another round of crud they all caught but I didn’t!) and then although they had rallied the day before, Eli started off the day of his party with a little throwing up and that never lends itself to a party atmosphere.  The celebrations were rescheduled for two weeks later, this past Sunday, November 10th.  If you think about it, it really was a major score for Eli, who by that time had totally forgotten about his birthday and all of the sudden it was Presents! Again! Thankfully, I had done a lot of party prep the days leading up but I had not done anything that couldn’t be put on hold for two weeks (pumpkin scones made but not baked-in freezer.  Decorations hung-our house just looked festive for two weeks. Wasabi deviled eggs-well, we ate those for two days solid and got a little sick of them and the rest went in compost).

So the party went well, the house was overrun by kids being maniac kids and Eli had a fantastic time which was the point of the whole thing. He got lots of cool gifts, mostly consisting of Legos, which is funny because I didn’t tell anyone he had recently developed an all abiding love for all things Lego. The two kids (moms) from Small Faces who also have 5 year old boys got them for him because their kids are All Legos All the Time. Apparently there’s some switch that gets flipped at 5 because a month ago? Eli thought legos were okay but nothing to write home about and then I bought him an Iron Man Lego kit for his birthday and it was ON. One afternoon I was playing with Ben and realized Eli’d been quiet for over an hour and when I went downstairs he was on step 24 of a 43 step instruction guide about how to put Iron Man’s water boat together.  It was REALLY IMPRESSIVE.  I thought Andy had helped him but he hadn’t.  Later that evening when Andy got home and found Eli working on it, he thought I had helped him.  Since his party, he has spent HOURS working at the dining table assembling his Lego kits, usually all by himself.  He will ask for a little help locating a part here and there but that’s about it.  The attention to detail and patience he displays is really amazing.

Ben is just exploding all over the place, in the best ways.  His speech has gone through the roof.  He talks almost constantly–even though it’s mostly babble, he’s getting better at getting his point across.  He clearly understands probably about 75% of what we say–he can get things for you, he knows where his shoes/jacket belong, he can help with clean up, etc. It’s awesome because we can really communicate with him now on some level but at the same time, little man gets frustrated when we have no idea what he wants.  He uses the sign for “more” and says “eat” a lot but then he sometimes doesn’t seem to be that hungry–he’s communicating “want” in some way but we’re not sure what he needs.  Granted, it usually is that he wants to eat–this kid eats almost NONSTOP.  I was complaining to Andy the other day that it feels like all I do these days is feed Ben and clean the kitchen.  The amount he can put away is staggering–two mornings ago he had a waffle, two eggs, five cherry tomatoes, a full sippy of milk, and a piece of toast for breakfast.  Then he ate another sizable snack (banana and some chex) before lunch.  For lunch he had a black bean and cheese quesadilla with more tomatoes and half an apple.  It’s ridiculous.  Andy and I figured it out and Ben is the same size at 15 months that Eli was AT TWO.

Can we just take a minute to absorb this?  Eli, who was a giant child, IS SMALLER THAN BEN AT THIS AGE.  BEN IS BIGGER.

I am so afraid for my grocery budget.

He’s getting more into being read to–he will now sit for about half a book before he tries to eat it or fling it across the room.  He brings books to us now to read and he is getting better at recognizing things in his 100 Words book.  He will point out dogs on the street– “Doggy! Doggy!” and make the most adorable barking sounds and also will make meow sounds for cats although his meow is more like “Mooooooowwwww” It’s pretty funny stuff.  He continues to love nothing more than being flipped, thrown, or otherwise hurled into the air–either by himself or someone else, so I’m pretty sure I’m going to start him in some circus classes as soon as he’s old enough.  He flies through the air with the greatest of ease! And hopefully learns to do it safely so he doesn’t give his poor mama a heart attack.  Or perhaps he will want to learn rock climbing?  The cool thing about Seattle is that he has tons of options!

Eli is still taking soccer now but he has expressed some interest in karate (check out the video, I have been cracking up ever since).  I told him I would see if I could find a drop in for him to do to see if he likes it since he can only do one or the other–between schools, swim class, and another class, that’s all the running around I care to do.  In water news–he lets us pour water over his head now in the tub!  So proud of that kid!

Here are some videos and also, new pictures up!

Walking out and about, Ben in his new winter jacket:

Lunchtime conversation

And my personal favorite, karate master.  Stick with it until about 1:13 and then I just have trouble not laughing.  He’s so great.