Monday, February 23, 2009

Spokane (tons 'o pics)

On Monday the 16th I woke up super early, loaded the car, bought a large coffee from Zoka's, and drove to Spokane. Levi and Claire came along of course! Josh, unfortunatley, has exhausted his two and a half month vacation and had to return to the rigors of the final months of education.

Why Spokane? Well, after four hours of driving and a speeding ticket we arrived at Will and Luke's new house! We had not seen them for about a month, so needless to say, it was quite exciting.
Lesley had tons of fun things planned and here are the pictures to prove it.

The afternoon we got there, we took the kids on a long walk to the neighborhood park. It took forever, but the boys loved walking on the snow.

That night we had movie night with dessert. On the menu: air popped popcorn, orange slices, apple slices, and pear slices. Total Super Mom moment.
The next day we went on a super outing to downtown Spokane. Here is the river...

And here is everybody walking on the bridges over the river.
Lesley had the wonderful idea to bring bread and let the kids feed the ducks.

However, we did not really count on the geese. They were rather aggressive! Lesley did a great job of keeping them in check though. Another Super Mom moment!

Claire just liked being a T-Rex and scaring all the ducks and geese away.

The boys displayed plenty of masculinity by playing King of the Hill and doing some Snow Beam Climbing.

Also at the park, a vacuum goat. It is kinda neat, this goat sucks up your garbage, thus resulting in a cleaner park. Well, it also results in cold hands, as the goat sucked up Will's glove along with the garbage.

Will was really upset. Lesley made him feel better by telling him that now that he was minus one glove, it was a great excuse to go buy him a new pair of mittens. It worked!

This was also at the park

Later that afternoon we all made cookies. Lesley found a recipe called "Aggression Cookies". All ingredients go into a bowl, including softened butter, and you just mix away with your hands. The kids kind of liked it. Claire was not interested in getting her hands dirty. What they really got into was decorating the cookies with sundrops, craisins, raisins and chocolate chips.

For dinner that night we were truly super moms: mini-pizza's made on whole wheat english muffins, corn on the cob, steamed green beans, carrots and peas. Of course, aggression cookies for dessert.

Also that night, we played dress-up safari with the kids. This was an attempt to draw out all excess energy so that bedtime would run smooth. Kinda worked.

Will was a dinosaur (his sweatsuit actually has stego spikes down the back and tail), Luke was a Viking, Claire was Bat girl, and Levi was Buzz Light year.
A better picture of Claire.

And, last but not least, the best picture of the trip:

Claire's Hair

Let's just be honest and get it right out into the open; Claire has a mullet. Not too attractive on an adorable toddler. However, convenient for a pony-tail. Anyway, I got sick of her wispy locks and decided to make her the latest victim of my scissors.

Another confession: I stink at haircuts. Really, I do. Josh, bless his heart, gave me many opportunities to practice on his head. But after each attempt he had to rush to the nearest salon, looking rather silly.

But I actually think that I did a good job on Claire! Here is a picture of her before:

And here are the after shots:

By the way, I love this look that Claire is giving me. She was sick of me putting barrettes in her hair and taking her picture. It is a classic "Claire" look!

I got a raise!

It is a great feeling getting a raise. You feel like your boss or supervisor respects you, thinks you do great work, feels that you are valuable.

But what sucks, is getting a raise for $0.05/hour just because the minimum wage rate went up in your state at the beginning of the year. Seriously, all the ladies at "the gym" got a $0.05 per hour raise effective January 1st. Let me tell you how this raise will effect our household:

Now I will get 15 cents more each day I work. Since I only work 2 days, that is 30 cents. Let's just average four weeks per month and my monthly income went up $1.20. Amazing isn't it!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What black cape?

I cannot believe that I have not told the cape story yet. It is pretty funny. If you are the type of person who thinks stories about mothers lying and deceiving their children and husband is funny, this story is for you!

A bit of background...

Around Thanksgiving time, Levi started getting into capes and superheros and such. In fact, he would take his apron, put it on backwards and pretend it was a cape. I noted this and thought that a REAL cape would be the perfect Christmas or birthday present. Since my mother is the expert seamstress, I told her about it. She, of course, said she would make a cape for Levi for Christmas.
The package arrived with Grandpa Jim when he came to visit and the cape was to die for. It was big. It draped over Levi's shoulders just like Darth Vader's cape. It had a large 'L' in the back. It was red.

I could not wait till Christmas, so we let Levi open that present a few days early. Needless to say, he fell in love with it. He wore it everywhere! It was just perfect.

Well, after Christmas, but before New Year's, we took the kids to Toys R Us to pick out a toy with the Christmas money that my grandparents had sent for the kids. Levi picked out this strange Batman gun thing that came with a black cape.

This cape sucked. It was plastic. It was cheap. It was totally unoriginal. But, it was black, and thus the red cape was replaced.

Panic set in; my mother was arriving in a couple days. Levi was now attached to the cheap black cape and the super awesome red cape was history.

Naturally, I did what any mother would do. I hid the black cape and then claimed ignorance the next morning when Levi and Josh looked for it. Not only did I hide it in a really good place, but I still have not disclosed the location of the cape to Josh. In fact, I only confessed to Josh a couple of weeks ago that I was intimately involved with the disappearance of the black cape.

But, my plan worked. Levi forgot about the black cape by the time my mom arrived. Now he wears the red cape all the time. He has totally forgotten about the black cape.

Josh, on the other hand, has not. Every once in a while, he will ask about the black capes whereabouts. Little does he realize how strong I am. I will never tell. Soon, it will go in the trash with all the other useless things when I start the daunting task of packing.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Dragons are cool. Singing birds are not.

I have to admit, I was a bit worried when Levi picked out his new toothbrush at Bartells last week. It has a huge picture of Belle. It is pink and purple. I got a bit more worried the other night at dinner when he fought Claire for the pink plate. I almost blew my cool when Levi picked out a princess movie at the community center this afternoon.

Josh just takes it all in stride, letting Levi brush his teeth, eat his dinner and watch his movie in peace. I, on the other hand, give Levi lectures on how the princess lifestyle is unbelievable, unattainable, and annoying. He does not care to listen to me. His reward for doing a good job at piano lessons today? Finishing the Sleeping Beauty movie.

As I was upstairs working on bills, Levi and Josh were watching the movie. Levi turns to Josh and says:

"Papa, when is the dragon coming, because all this dancing and birds and singing is really boring."

Victory is mine.

Monday, February 2, 2009

There is a gun in my pocket

Josh and I found our new favorite restaurant: Chipolte. SO GOOD. Anyway, we decided to take the kids out tonight and as I was buckling Levi into his car seat we ran into a bit of trouble. Apparently, Levi knows how to buckle himself in. Okay, so I did already know that. But I try to buckle him in really quick before he realizes what I am doing, because he is SO slow at buckling the car seat himself.

He caught on this time, and threw a mini-fit about "doing it myself." Not being in the mood, I told him to knock it off or we will just go home.

Immediately he stopped crying and looked at me and said "but we are already home." True. We were in the parking lot.

So then I told him that if he did not knock it off we would just not go out to dinner. He then looked at me and said, in a very calm and matter-to-fact voice. "Mom, I have a gun in my pocket."

Excuse me? Was that a threat? This will be a long 14 years.