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Hop Hop Hop

Posted by casey on April 29, 2014 in Holiday Fun

Whaddyaknow, the Easter bunny came, hop, hop, hop.

On Easter Eve, because after Christmas Eve, the boys’ totally adapted themselves to pre-holiday behavior, we picked out Easter books to read and they reminded us that they had to stay asleep so the Easter Bunny would visit. Oh really?  Is that how it all works? Okie dokie holiday patrol, so long as you shut those peepers of yours and have sweet dreams for the night that works beautifully.

They hadn’t asked many questions about how the Easter bunny came leading up to it and I was waiting for the detail analyzing to come, but it did not. Off they went to bed and while Mommy made sure the Easter bunny had come to our yard in the morning Daddy got the boys out of their room once they were up.  Then, the most perfect childhood Easter morning moment happened.  As both boys happily informed me that the Easter Bunny came as they literally hopped down the stairs, Everett popped himself right by the front door and glued his face to the entry window.  “I don’t see him Mommy! I lookin’ but I don’t see him!”

 To his relief I told them I thought I saw evidence of his arrival in our backyard and they skittered on out to see for themselves. Oh yes…in their Buzz and Woody jammies. You’re welcome.

Off they ran and this Easter Bunny was smart, and I mean smart because these boys were gifted little gadgets and gizmos in pairs.  One for you, and one for you.  That Easter Bunny must have a brother within two years of him. Smart hopper there.

Caden made it to his basket first, and even though they were right next to each other, Everett was so mesmerized by Caden’s basket that he spent most of the time pointing and gasping at Caden’s and not noticing he had the same thing right there. “Look at what you got Caden?!”  Fortunately Caden was too mesmerized himself to be bothered by his brother being in his “business”.

Each item was pulled out, tested out and obviously, not at all shown any excitement over.

A book, hats, superhero fans, bubbles, Toy Story rollers, a bathtub fishing pole, and the almighty, now treasured, can’t leave home without it TRANSFORMER!

Easter Bunny, you made their little cheap-o hearts fill with delight.  But between you and me, I know you found bargain items on after holiday clearance.  Yeah, that’s right.  I saw that $40 camera on $4.50 super sale in the toy area. Good thing you snagged it before I did or your Easter Bunny baskets would have been sad.  I know your tricks.  But in the end, thank you Easter Bunny, they were quite ecstatic and did their very best with their big boy muscles to carry them inside once the initial examination had been performed successfully.

Trinkets and treasures for our boys who get almost candy-less baskets with all of Everett’s allergies.  Lucky for him, his marshmallows being his main treat dreams came true this Spring in the form of Peeps.  Caden if you can’t tell couldn’t quite believe he got a soccer playing bunny that had a blue soccer shirt just like him.  So lucky.

It was a great visit from the bunny with another visit of eggs at Nonna and Pa Pa’s! To top it off that evening (post-egg hunt so yes, I am going out of order here) while playing in the yard with Daddy Everett witnessed what we have all been waiting for, a real life Easter Bunny appearance.  He came screeching into the house to get myself and Caden was screaming “I SAW THE EASTER BUNNY!”  Thinking he was just talking about that morning I semi gave him the “Oh yeah? You did..”  Then I realized he was serious.  So off we went outside where Daddy was still waiting just in time for Caden to also see a large ol’ cotton-tailed bunny sitting in our neighbor’s front yard.  The boys waved and said “Thank you for our Easter baskets Easter Bunny!” Off he hopped.  Perfection.  Details of the Easter bunny won’t be asked because on the very first year they would REALLY remember, they saw him I the flesh…or fur. See you next year Bunny, until then, carrot up.

 

 
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In Colorful Preparation

Posted by casey on April 28, 2014 in Holiday Fun, Life as I Know It

Somewhere along the wild path of turning Easter into a holiday where a bunny brings things and we celebrate Spring in addition to that fact that He is Risen, which so fun and full of vibrant colors this boy household doesn’t always get to embrace it was also decided that hard boiled eggs should be colored.  I am convinced that this was a joke played on mothers with young children to see how many things they could permanently stain but a tradition is a tradition and I do love doing things with my munchkins that I did as a kiddo too.

Last year was Caden’s first year to dye eggs.  He is such a good listener when it comes to projects and I knew he was ready to get into it. Everett, not so much.  So he napped while we dyed eggs I believe.  This year, it was both of them.  Now, Caden, who remembers EVERYTHING, had been asking me when we were going to “put colors on the eggs” and where were the “little cups with the colors in them” for a couple of weeks.  I kept meaning to do it, and then would forget to cook the eggs in advance making it not happen that day…and then that day…and oh yeah, the day after that.

Finally, I got it done and with years ahead of us for making crazy tie-dyed, or crayoned ones with glitter (Do boys get into that?) I use the same ol’ same ol’ PAAS cheapo sets and call it a day. It serves it’s purpose, it cleans up easy, and we have the system down.  While the boys were finished their dinner they were getting suspicious as they saw me carrying cups outside pre poured with the vinegar, paper towels, an empty egg carton and a pitcher of water. Obvious much?

Out we went, shirts stripped, rules stated and ready to let them loose.  I think their favorite part is simply dropping the color tabs in the vinegar and seeing who can scream the color the quickest.  Once all fizzed out, they were very excited and eager to fill as many cups with eggs as fast as they could.  Knowing they both would be giddy and wanting to do more than a couple at a time I made an extra batch of cups so some could be soaking while we were pulling others out and so on and so forth.  No real disasters either, can you believe it?!

Everett was a bit eager to grab and eager to plop the first few in but learned quickly to do it a little more gently so not to splash colored water everywhere.  Truthfully, doing it outside like this is the best because they can really just enjoy it without worrying about the mess or anything like that and I could pretty much let them go and then re-direct each stage without much interference.  A win for us all. Freedom!

They dyed and dipped and surprisingly scooped them out very effectively. The challenge for me wasn’t getting them to be careful it was just that they wanted to do it all at the same time.  So getting each to wait their turn until I had dried the one they pulled out before they scooped their next one was fast business.

Keeping it simple I again just gave them the sheets of stickers to decorate their own six eggs however they wanted.  I had dried all of the eggs in the dozen carton and then let them take turns one egg by one picking which eggs they wanted in their “own carton” I had cut for them.  Notice Everett’s obsessive favorite color? Blue. The answer with him is always blue and when we ran out of blue for him to choose, he begrudgingly chose a red.  They sat, they stuck, they rotated and repeated until all was decorated to their own personal delight.  Finished products? Loud and proud.

 
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Finish This

Posted by casey on April 25, 2014 in Writing Nook

Jordy, Jordy, Jordy. You have heard her name before on here and now you are again simply because I am tagging along on one of the link ups she is joining as well. You can Link Up With Jen, Nicole, Lisa or Becky.  She always finds the best link ups.  With my two little teenagers (attitude baby) running the roost I need quick, simple and cute.  That would be “Finish This”

 

My favorite makeup item is…my concealer.  After having my two very busy boys, very close together I learned what always looking like you have two black eyes from not sleeping for two straight years after Everett was born looks like.  And grey hairs…and age spots…and, never mind.  None of my previous concealers offered continuous coverage throughout the day without drying out my under-eyes, or causing creases.  And then I happened upon Stila Perfecting Concealer.  Know what? It is in fact, perfect.

My favorite TV show is… Game of Thrones. I mean come on, it has everything. Everything!  Plus I get to fantasize about living in such a time while at the exact same time being incredibly aware that I am not made to live in such a time.  That and the fact that I am not equipped to read the books like my husband has, so I have to take the Cliff Notes via the show on this one.
The most spontaneous thing I’ve ever done is… gotten a tattoo on my foot, with my Dad, a week after graduating high school.  Completely out of character, and yet, there it is.
I prefer dogs because…they don’t pretend they like you petting them and then in a flash sink their claws into your hand while trying to gnaw it off at the same time.  I assume you meant “I prefer dogs to cats because…”  Maybe I read into that.  I prefer dogs because mine happens to be more intuitive than most of my friends.
I met my significant other…in Pre-AP Geometry class. Yup, circa ninth grade at the ages of 15(me) and 14(him).  I’m such a cougar.
Prompts for next week:
My last growing pain was…
I grow and nurture…
The guilt-free snack I enjoy most…
The best reason to stay up all night…
If I were stranded on a desert island, I’d…

 
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Boys in Blue

Posted by casey on April 22, 2014 in Life as I Know It

The Texas tradition of bluebonnets is one my family never got around to, so I started early on with my kiddos.  I mean, they are just so pretty, especially in abundance. That and I have a picture fetish you may have noticed.  That isn’t important though, lets not focus on that issue. This year, with the most amazing field discovered after much searching a couple of weeks ago I plopped the boys out of the car just to take a couple of quick shots so as not to torture anyone too long and the whole fact that we were on our way to dinner but stopped off to verify to location.

What I learned was that I think I have busy boys.
Okay…what I confirmed is that I have busy boys.
We started off with a somewhat giddy romp through the field as they had been asking to play in the blue flowers during our drives.

He was so excited in fact that he began to get the sillies and dance, which led to this perfectly precious face and then that oh so peculiarly shaped dancing arm that looks like he is trying to show you his pistol.

But it is all okay in the end right because I go this face.  That is definitely what I was hoping for. Though it does mark the time accurately.

 Everett wanted to contribute too.

So we all hugged it out.

 And hiked up our pants old man style.

And got confused as to what we were supposed to do with this many blue flowers.

And then the itsy bitsy spider crawled over Caden’s shoe causing a reaction that made us believe he surely had to have lost a limb.

But Everett soothed him.  And brought him back to Earth.

But clearly we had to leave.  Because the spider might come back.

 Boys.  Way too busy for a camera this night so “keeping it real” snapshot out-takes it is. Marking the memories one spider attack at a time.

 
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My Spring Chickens

Posted by casey on April 19, 2014 in Caden, Everett, Holiday Fun

Winter was long. It went away, it came back, it went away and it came back again.
But finally, spring rolled around and with the perfect age at hand why not have a little Easter Spring fun this year with the help of some baby bow ties and oh yes, some baby springtime animal friends.  I think yes. A Happy Easter indeed.

Happy Easter, From My Little Spring Chickens…or in this case, Ducks!

 
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Strength in Numbers

Posted by casey on April 18, 2014 in Friends, Snapshots

Today I am humbled.

This group of women has blessed me time and time again over years, and years and years.  In realizing that we are all getting, ahem, older, I am also realizing how truly special it is to have a group that has grown with you.  A solid group in this photo has withstood bad hair choices, awkward costumes, the politics of school from elementary through college and every “first” of growing up.  Now, getting ahem, older is taking note of all the things we have been through together that I still feel too young to have experienced.  I am blessed by these women and our “know you can count on it” support in any time of need be it little or large.  Walking with them through all we have grown through both in grief and joy is a less treacherous path indeed. May our love for each other continue and our prayers still be felt from afar.

 
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Gimme’ 5

Posted by casey on April 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

According to some whosey whatsit site somewhere it is National High Five Day today. This led me to think of two things.

1. A National High Five Day? Really.  Deemed by whom and for what purpose?  A National Day for everything, literally. Even farting. It is January 7th. Look it up.

They totally meant to do that.  They were just going to swing it around down low like the cool kids.

2. Who keeps track of this National Holiday calendar.  Because a couple of weeks ago I saw on another whosey whatsit site somewhere that it was National Ice Cream Day and Ben & Jerry’s was giving out free cones.  Since I don’t have a Ben & Jerry’s near me but I do have a Braum’s I looked into this matter and discovered National Ice Cream Day is in July.  Seems like someone is mixing up the post-it dates if you ask me.

Important stuff here right?
Back to it. National High Five Day.
Despite my reasonable level of disdain for the random declaring of national celebrations for all things randomness, I am all down for a solid high five.

And it gave good reason to share their love as well.

 
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Old 4 {A Birthday Letter}

Posted by casey on April 16, 2014 in Caden, Caden's Chronicles

Dearest Caden,
Almost two months ago you turned four and this documentation of the current ins and outs of you has been sitting in my Draft Box since then.  Lets get it out.

Old Four! You have waited for this birthday for an entire year, to turn as you say, “old 4″ and some days my son you seem just that, so old.  It is the greatest of joys to watch you grow, learn and mature and the greatest of sorrows as your sentimental mother to say goodbye to another year of the “early years”.  Another year that you will often hear of in years to come, “Well I remember when you were just three and you used to…” “You don’t want to cuddle? Well, when you were three you would let me…”  But you will never min

” Oh my goodness, You’re the best mom, just the best.” -response to opening the gift he had been asking for in the months leading to his birthday

d a quick snuggle from your mom right? Right.

At four years of age you are a chatterbox of an energy machine. While your

chit-chat has always been constant your energy and excitement ability has really kicked it up a notch.  You enjoy narrating any show you are watching, game we are playing, or pretend scenario that is going on.  You

just want to make sure we see everything you are seeing and don’t miss out.  The only trick is we have to respond every.single.time even when you are just telling us the same thing over and over or you will continue to tell us the same thing over and over until we do.  Enter exhausted mom brain here that is also so proud of your “smarts”.   Your energy allows you to run up and down the stairs playing in your “police car” (bean bag chair) in your bed, hiding out from the robots, or being a ninja in the trampoline.

Speaking of police cars, robots, ninjas, secret ops with Daddy, bow and arrows, wrestling matches and sports galore if it wasn’t evident before it is EXTREMELY evident now that we are an “all-boy, all-the-time” household now. Not baby boys, not toddler boys, boys.  The kind with stinky tennis shoes, worms in their hands, snot in their hair, boys.  Even with the odor of urine and sweat in the background, it is a wonderful thing having a home of boys, and we are thankful to test the waters with you through every age and stage.

Daddy is without a doubt your hero, and you often tell him that he is your best friend.  I am your best Mommy, which is good, because I am the only one you got son.  Everett is your best home and/or brother friend and Dylan is your best school friend.  Best friends galore in your eyes. Still the sweetest of sentimental kiddos, you surprise us with sudden hugs and kisses when you are just feeling like giving one or think we are in need.  Your sensitivity has allowed you to be very intuitive to how others are feeling causing you to turn into a little caregiver if you think or know we are will or someone is down.  Even last weekend on the soccer field, you gave your friend a hug and asked him what was wrong when he looked a little forlorned out there.  You are just as observant as you have always been and you don’t miss a thing, nor do you forget it.

Playing with Nonna’s “Robot”

Your memory is in my eyes truly remarkable.  You just don’t forget a thing! You remember details of sure the important things that seem more obvious to make a mark on you but also the day to day happenings of your meals, things you saw in the car and what was said to you.  We can pull out a book we haven’t read in months and you will still recite all the words with me.  We can read a book one time and the next time you will recite all of the words with me.  That being said, we have to be a little careful what we say we will “do later” or “in the morning” because nothing, not even a full night’s sleep will make your memory go blank. Memory master.

As a whole you are our school loving, learning loving, project loving whiz.  You constantly ask us to spell things, enjoy sounding out words on signs now in the very beginning stages of reading and love to practice your letters as seen here writing thank you notes after your birthday.  Turns out being in my belly while I was teaching paid off…that is the reason right?

You have really begun to take your role as a big brother seriously.  You now know you can manipulate Everett into getting things or doing things for you, you now know you can tattle on him and you now know you can be the first to show him how to do something or offer your help.  You are sweet and sour together and all things brothers should be.  The best of friends and the best of rivals, the best of loves and the fiercest of competitors.  You read together every night and you lead the way into Everett’s room first to tell him goodnight and give him a hug.  You two do not know life without the other and it is wonder

Birthday Cake Making

ful.You are a snacker of an eater (just like your mom) and so we have to battle your slowness to stop talking and just eat at dinner.  You are also testing us on our response to things more and more each day.  More and more kid, less and less toddler.  You still love your nap, though we are getting ready to take it away because you are having a little trouble being tired enough to go to bed at night.  You will stay awake for HOURS just sitting in your room looking around making my mother’s heart feel lonely and sad for you.  So, guiet time will be initiated at nap instead and you are VERY excited about the idea of reading books and playing puzzles in your room during nap time. Big boy.  Why? Because you are old four of course, which you remind us is the reason for just about everything.  You don’t have a paci because you are old four, but you do still have your two snugglies because you are old four. “I can do anything because I am old four Mommy.”  You can sing your songs (Marching Song, Sunshine, Happy and You Know It, Bingo) because you are old four and you can definitely climb in the car and do your buckle by yourself because you are yes, old four.  You can carry your plate over, be a good listener, help put laundry in and put on your own clothes because you.are.old.four.  If only we all were old four we would be as “super” and “strong” and “smart” and “good” as you. Maybe we should take that to the White House.

I predict four to be a year full of sillies as you have grown funnier, full of more nonsense jokes and just that, sillier over the past six months. You love to make yourself and us laugh whether it is my what you are saying or how you are wiggling around.  Not just a case of the sillies, an epidemic of the sillies. Fine by me…unless it is at bath time when we are trying to wind down the day and you decide running around buck “nakey” as you say is a thrilling idea until we track you down. (I secretly treasure watching your bare bottom run the opposite way from me because one day you are going to wake up and be mortified if I see that bare bottom.)

Oh Mr. Caden, my how you test me sometimes and my how my heart is holding on to these fleeting moments of your little years.  Day by day I am “losing you” to school, friends and life as it is happening to you fast making me slow down and treasure the moments you want me to lay with you at night for “just a few minutes mommy”,  and hearing you pitter patter behind me and say in your ever-carrying voice now “Mommy can you play with me?”  You may be an early riser, and don’t tell Daddy, but I love it when you open our bedroom door early in the morning and crawl up next to me.  Those quiet moments before the day has started, before your brother is calling for me and before the days’ tasks enter my head it is just you and me like before you were even born.  Just us, taking on the world together.

I love you Caden, even if you are growing up too fast and you are “old four” now. Keep on flexing those muscles son, you have a lot to be proud of already.

 
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Tag-Along

Posted by casey on April 15, 2014 in Caden, Everett, Snapshots

The joys of younger siblings.
Wait for me, wait for me!

 
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Another Snoozy Sunday

Posted by casey on April 13, 2014 in Life as I Know It

Last Sunday brought a lazy, rainy day and this Sunday proves to be the same. However, I am not complaining.  Breakfast out, painting scenery for our much anticipated puppet show inspired by our nightly reading of “If You Give a Moose a Muffin”, and rainy day play because around here when it rains, we play.

Rainy days have to be the best fool-proof, giggle eliciting, free entertainment around that provide what I remember as real childhood memories.

Undies and Umbrellas? I think yes.
Alas, sooner or later the thunder rolls…and the lightening strikes and two mini-men make grumpy faces because they aren’t done playing yet we have to go in.

(I think they are brothers.)

So in comes another quickie-made spring fun matching game.
Count the bunnies, find the number.

Counting Bunnies Match-Up

Again, here for you in case your snoozy Sunday needs some activity too.
Get to hopping. I mean counting.
For me it is practically the same thing.

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