Monday, October 29, 2007

kindergarten love...

I copied this from Julie's blog so I could remember it too, I thought it was too funny, and the first I'd heard about a girlfriend.

Julie overheard this conversation between Macie, her daughter, and Porter.

Macie: Porter, you can be my boyfriend.
Porter: Desirae is already my girlfriend.
Macie: Ok, you can kiss her.
Porter: Well, you can be my girlfriend, too. I have lots of girlfriends, 100's of them.
Macie: Ok, bye! (giggles)

So I can see why Porter might be a hot item in kindergarten. But I can't get him to talk about it! I read Julie's post last night, and this morning told Porter I heard a rumor about him and Desirae. He got really angry and refused to talk about it. He stomped out of the room while informing me "I don't want to talk about it!" A few minutes later when I entered the room he was in, he said, " I don't even want to talk about it, don't ask me anything!" Hmmmm... now I'm really curious!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

TMNT training camp

Happy Birthday to Porter! We celebrated his big day on Saturday with nearly 15 of his friends in attendance. Whew... The theme was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. So we had a little training camp for them.

When they arrived they made TMNT out of green play dough (I put their dough in this gift bags to take home with them). Then I tied blue headbands on them and we went outside for their education and training. We told them the story of TMNT, we did some warm up drills, a cool obstacle course that Doug designed.

We had a lemonade stand so they could rehydrate during their training. We played ninja, ninja, turtle (duck, duck, goose). And Sensei says (Simon says). And Ninja Turtle, Ninja Turtle (Red Rover-- which I should add is not a very safe game... at all! Poor Sophia and Jade almost got their arms ripped off when Porter accurately targeted them as the weakest link in our chain. After we played with the kids, we let each kid try to break through me and Doug, none was successful, but we almost landed on kid on his head). We decided to limit the party to kids Porter's age, because we wanted to play some rougher games, and I didn't want younger siblings getting hurt. I think we were wise!

We had a pinata, per Porter's request. I think had we only had a pinata, he would have been happy, since turtles eat pizza, we had to have pizza, then we cut the cake (which I made, I've learned to keep the cakes simple, and this one was, but I was quite proud of it anyways). And finished with presents. His friends were so generous, and he was so excited with his gifts. He's been playing with them all weekend. Fun Fun Fun!





















Sophia was an animal on the obstacle course. After a fall, she would pick herself up, and keep going without stopping.
My VT partner stopped by to drop something off, she ended up staying and helping. It was great! My neighbor Claudia also helped out with the baby, and with candles. I couldn't find the ones I'd bought for the day, and she saved me by bringing some over.

Halloween Carnival & Trunk or Treat


Our stake held a four-ward Halloween carnival and trunk or treat.

Pumpkin and spider tick tack toe

Porter and his buddy, Christopher

Doug and Angela, UPS workers
Preston, our Special Delivery

Leonardo
A TeenAge Mutant Ninja Turtle


The Little Mermaid




Fun times!
Look closely at my skirt. I turned a pair of UPS pants into a skirt. We got the costumes from Doug, he used to work UPS in college during the summer and during the holidays.

Make-Believe Parade

Friday began our Halloween celebrations! Porter's school, in an effort to be politically correct I suppose, doesn't have a dress up day on the actual holiday.

The Friday before Halloween was "Make Believe Day." The kids were allowed to wear costumes that weren't too scary. Masks and make-up were not allowed either. They played games during the day, and at the end of the day they had a little parade that the parents were invited to watch.

Even though Sophia couldn't march in the parade, there was no way she was going to miss out on an opportunity to wear her costume.


Doesn't she make a cute mermaid? Up until last week, when I asked her what she wanted to be for Halloween, I kept getting different answers, but since last week she has consistently said, mermaid. It's fitting, because she swims like a mermaid when she's in the water.

Unfortunately, by the time she made her decision on what she wanted to be, the stores I checked were out of her size of mermaid costume. I created a costume, and told Sophia it was a mermaid costume (see zoo boo). Sophia seemed happy with the costume, but a friend (Jane) heard about it, and borrowed this costume from another friend. Jane's three year old is another little mermaid in the water, and she thought that Sophia needed an authentic mermaid costume. So nice of her!

Porter was pleased to see us come watch his parade. Last time I missed a school parade, the first thing he said when I picked him up, was "where were you?" I vowed to not make that mistake again. I know the day will come when he doesn't want me there, so I have to take advantage of him wanting me around while I can!
He wanted to be the Fantastic Four guy, he said he's saving his turtle costume for true Halloween activities.

Friday, October 26, 2007

long hair vs short hair

It's that time again... haircut time... However, this time I'm trying to decide, should I grow it out long again? Or should I chop it off? I'd like to be really brave and go boy cut short... but I don't know if I'd look good with such short hair. Doug likes it long, and is encouraging me to grow it out... But I get tired of finding long hair on the floor... I do need something that doesn't require a lot of time... Hmmm... Any thoughts? Any pictures of great hair cuts I could use? Do you think I look better with long hair or short hair?

Here are some photos to refresh your memory of how I look with different lengths...

photo by Annie

photo by Audra

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Good big brother

When I looked over and saw Porter holding his brother, I had to take a picture, because I wanted to preserve such a sweet moment.

I can't believe how old Porter is getting! More on that later!

His checkup went well today...

He is

Weight: 49 pounds (75th percentile)

Height: 47 pounds (75th percentile)

I got shots for all my kids today. Nice to get it all done in one fell swoop, but, at the same time, a little anxiety producing... Sophia volunteered to go first (flu shot), and did a fabulous job. Preston was next (they were out of the prevnar at his 4 month appointment-- thought that was weird, but whatever) and he was of course sad.

I had to coax Porter back into the room (he left without a word as soon as the nurse brought in every one's shots. It took all of my strength to hold him down, he's such a big boy! I was just about to give up and call in for reinforcements (more nurses) when he finally stopped fighting me. He cried so hard, Sophia started crying for him, and the baby was already wailing because I had put him down.

I was quite the sight, to say the least, trying to get all my hysterical kids out the door. It was one of those mom moments of, "you gotta just laugh, otherwise you'll cry!"

Getting Ready for Halloween

We are excited for Halloween! When we decorated a few weeks ago, the kids donned costumes (not the ones they're wearing for the real thing), grabbed these mini pumpkins and "practiced" trick or treating to each other for over an hour.

Approaching the home (couch), knocking (verbally), saying trick or treat, and filling their pumpkins with candy, one piece per house... I love it when they come up with their own games, and play together! They did talk me into playing after a while, and I had fun too!

In the past, I have tried to save holiday activities for be done closer to their respective holidays, but then sometimes I feel like we don't really enjoy them because we're rushing them, trying to fit them all in in a short amount of time.

I'm trying a different strategy this time, and I think it's working. I brought home our pumpkin last week, and the kids were so excited to carve it, I said why not, it's Monday night, it can be family home evening. Doug helped them carve a scary face.

True to H* weather factors, the pumpkin molded in a few days, and Porter then had an absolutely delightful time demolishing the pumpkin in the back yard. When I agreed to the project, I assumed it would keep him busy for hours... and it did... what I didn't realize was that he wanted me to help him with his huge project (it takes along time to whittle away a large pumpkin with a butter knife...). Porter can be so creative in his "projects." Another memorable and also time consuming one was making watermelon juice from a large watermelon and a garlic press...

Porter invited the neighbor boy, Saul, over to join in the festivities. The only catch is, the boy is baptist, not a big deal, but his congregation doesn't believe in celebrating Halloween. ( I thought that was only Jehovah Witnesses, but I was wrong!) They say it's the devil's holiday.


I called Saul's mom and asked her if if was okay if he carved the pumpkin with us, and she was fine with it. But as we're working, he starts telling us how evil Halloween is, and how it's the devil's birthday...


It was an interesting experience to chose the right words to try and show Saul and Porter how to respect each other beliefs. To validate what Saul has been taught by his parents, but to reinforce to Porter that we love Halloween, and believe it's fine to celebrate it with costumes, and pumpkins and candy... I also didn't want Porter to think he might have a reason to not like the date of his birthday.


We explained to the boys that technically the devil doesn't have a body, so he can't have a birthday. Porter was due on Halloween, and I admit, I wasn't too excited about having a Halloween baby, but when it happened, I decided to embrace it, and run with it.
We explained the whole birthday thing to Saul, and how because of Porter we try to have great celebrations. Halloween is now one of our families favorite holidays!


A couple of weeks ago when Saul heard Porter talking about costumes, he looked at Porter and said, "Porter, I thought you went to church." He answered back, "I do." Saul said, "Then why are you dressing up for Halloween? "


At that I quickly jumped in and explained that we have different beliefs, but it's okay. We can still be friends and respect each other. I pointed out that his dad drinks coffee and believes it's okay, and we don't, but we're still all friends.


What a tricky thing to try to explain to such young kids. They're old enough to care, but are they old enough to really get it? I mean, there are lots of adults who don't get it; who have trouble respecting differences and being tolerant and loving regardless of different beliefs.


Preston was fine at first being an observer to the festivities, but by the end, he was done!

Pumpkin Patch

The church where Porter attended pre-school last year has a pumpkin patch every year. I took the kids over this afternoon to check it out. We stayed over an hour and a half, surprising only because the patch is quite small. But the weather was absolutely beautiful, and the kids were easily entertained. It was a pleasant, peaceful, as close to fall experience as we get around here!

Scarecrow Porter


Scarecrow Sophie

Bean bag toss

Sleeping boy

Look closely, they're in there

Coloring


Hammering golf tees into the pumpkin. Yeah, this one kept them busy for a VERY long time. Give Porter a hammer, or anything resembling a tool that can be used to crush or dissect something, and he's a happy boy.
The other time consuming activity was the dried corn. They spent a fair amount of time filling piling, and moving, and filling containers with the corn.

Still sleeping... Although he did wake up for the end. The sweet ladies manning the booth let me put the car seat in a wagon, and the kids pulled him and their pumpkins around the patch in the wagon.

Zoo Boo

On Saturday we went down to Zoo Boo. It was fun to have a reason to get dad at the zoo with us. The zoo had lots of fun extra activities, including trick or treating and extra zoo keeper chats and demos.

They also had a pumpkin patch and each child got to select a small pumpkin to bring home. Porter went right for a large display pumpkin, and wasn't very happy to learn that they were just for show.



I think their favorite part of the zoo is the children's section. We always play in the fountains. Sophia was thrilled, her most common outfit of choice lately has been a bathing suit. I guess she figures you never know when you might need one.


Mommy, What Time Is It?

Sophia asks me at least 5 or 6 times a day... "Mommy, what time is it?" An answer such as "Lunch time" or "Bed time" is unacceptable. She wants to know the hour and the minute... Not sure why, she has little concept of time... When I give the appropriate answer, such as, "3:30," she responds with an "Oh, okay." Like she now has the information needed to plan the rest of day.

Just another cute quirk!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Grateful Sunday



It's been a while since I've made a grateful Sunday post... I think it's time

* Doug left before 8 this morning, and arrived home after 9. He had two short breaks where he rushed home, grabbed something to eat, and was out the door again. Surprisingly, it wasn't as bad as I had anticipated. Porter was in good spirits, so that helped. I know the Lord helped me have a good attitude.

* Lunch with Porter. I've been trying to meet Porter for lunch once a week... You know, start a new tradition in our family. It' s been really fun. He's always so excited to see me. Sometimes I take Preston and Sophia, and sometimes I just go to have a date with Porter. Sophia likes to go to big school. When we drive past the school, she tells me that Porter lives there... It does feel like that sometimes.

* Preston started rolling on Thursday. It's so fun to watch him hit milestones. He rolls from his back to his stomach, plays for a while, then squawks until I come pick him up or roll him over.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Preston 4 month stats

Month 4--
weight-- 15.7 1/2 (75th percentile)
height-- 24 3/4 (50th percentile)
head circ-- 16 1/2 (50 th percentile)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

myspace... cooler online

I recently heard, for the first time, the song, "I'm so much cooler online" by Brad Paisley. The song is about a guy relating what his reality is compared to the profile he's created for himself on-line on his myspace account. It's hysterical. I laughed out loud the first time I heard it. (click here to read the lyrics).

It reminded me of thoughts I've had regarding myspace. Two of my brothers have myspace accounts, and I get on periodically to check out what they've posted. I even, gulp, dare I admit it, have a myspace account. I haven't done anything with it, but in order to post comments I had to create one.

Still, I don't see the point in the myspace thing, even though I know, thousands of others do... This summer I asked my brother and his cute girlfriend (who both have and regularly use, myspace accounts) to explain the lure of myspace. They think it's a good way to keep up with friends they don't see regularly, and find friends they've lost track of

I admit, the first time I looked at their pages it was fun, because they've posted lots of info and pictures about themselves and their lives. Lists of favorites ... movies, music, entertainment, etc. But after the initial viewing, there's not a lot new to see. You can post public messages, or you can send private messages, but how is that different than email?

I think blogging is so much better! A blog has a lot more depth to it than a myspace page. There is a blog option on a myspace page, but it's not the focus, and my brothers and their girlfriends rarely use the blog option. At any given time I can click to a friends blog and as I read their posts, and get a good idea of what's going on in their life. That, for me, is "keeping up with my friends" in a more meaningful and informative way.

I love the opportunity I have on my blog to journal my photos and preserve and record keep the major events in our lives along with the day to day occurrences.

Now the other question the fun song introduces is... are you so much cooler on line? Are you so much cooler on your blog than in real life?

I've been thinking about it. I hope to get to a point where I feel more comfortable revealing more personal feelings and thoughts about things on my blog. I think part of blogging is sharing opinions. I currently do a lot of travel logging and memory preservation and I love having a place to record that stuff. I would loose a lot of it, were it not for my blog.

I hope that I portray myself honestly, the good and the bad. I feel like I do. But there's no doubt about it; my blog is part of me, but it's also the part I chose to share. I think in all memoirs, events are recorded through the author's prejudices and emotions, not necessarily inaccurately, but we all know there are many sides to one story. My blog is my side of the story.

So the question still remains... Are you cooler online?

more race photos





At every race there is a photographer snapping photos... Some of the ones he got of me were too hideous to post... These, while not glamorous, do capture the moment... Thus they're worth at least preserving for memory sake...

Sunday, October 14, 2007

beach

After the race we headed down to the beach. It was a perfect time to of year to go... the weather is warm enough to wear a swimming suit, but not hot enough to be uncomfortable. The water is cool, yet refreshing. I love the calm and peace the beach brings to my soul. It's just easy to relax and enjoy life on the beach.



Enjoying the sand mountain.
I think the beach is a Porter paradise.

He can dig and dig and dig as much as he wants.
He can make as much mud as he wants.
He's not going to get in trouble for sacrificing grass in order to dig a huge hole.
The recently planted flowers and vegetables are in no danger of being uprooted.
The carpets are safe from forgetful muddy toes sneaking in when I'm not watching.
When he's done digging, he can simply rinse off in the ocean.

I guess it's a mom paradise too!





Preston was the main reason we waited until October to go the beach. Sand and sun aren't the best combination for a happy baby. He seemed to enjoy watching the waves and the sand castle creation.







Sophia's eyes sparkled as she told me in a hushed and excited voice as we were getting out of the car that she was going to look for mermaids while she swam in the ocean...


On the way home we passed by a dollar theatre and decided to let the fun continue. While Porter has been several times, once with us and Grandma B to see Brother Bear and once with Gramps to see Cars, Sophia has never been.

As the movie started she leaned over and asked me where they got the big TV from.
I feel like I'm always writing about the cute things she says, but she's just at that age where at least half of what comes out makes me smile. Her comments just show her perception of the world, which is so funny sometimes.
I love how little kids just say what ever is on their mind. I feel like Sophia says everything she thinks. It's fun to have that glimpse inside her little head. I know that at times my blog has been very Porter centered, so right now I guess it's just Sophia's turn to be spot lighted.

Sophia also kept asking me when we were going into the alligator. I guess she heard alligator, when we said movie theatre... When I would try and correct her she would ask a minute later when we were going in the alligator. Finally I told her we would go after the movie was over, and she accepted that as an appropriate answer.
I wonder if she really thought we were going inside an alligator, and if so, why she was so cheerful about it. She's always following me into my bedroom and shutting and locking the door behind us so that "the crocodiles don't come in."


We saw:



It was a cute show. Sophie thought it was scary. Porter now claims it as his current favorite movie. He and Doug laughed at all of the right places. Porter commented later about how he much his dad laughed during the movie, and how he wants to do things to make dad laugh that hard again.

Being in the theatre with my small children reminded me of my first movie theatre memory...

My mom thinks the first one I actually saw was Superman. But ET is the one I remember and claim. How about you?