Michael is off to Prague.
And I'm sick.
It's gonna be long week.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Michael is off to Prague.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Every time you ask Parker anything, he says, "Well...." first. It always cracks me up since he sounds like he is about to explain the most important thing that has ever been said...something that is quite complex.
Rachel: Parker, did you put your underwear in the hamper?
Parker: Well...I didn't put them on the floor.
Rachel: Parker, what did you do at camp today?
Parker: Well..we played a game, but I didn't want to play it, but others did.
Rachel: You should have peed before you left today.
Parker: Well...it wasn't ready to come out yet.
Monday, July 26, 2010
Parker: Mommy, do you know what an atom is?
Me: I don't know, what is it? (not knowing if he said Adam or Atom)
Parker: It's the smallest thing ever and you can never see it. Not even with a telescope or microscope.
Parker: An amoeba is bigger than an atom. You can see it with a microscope.
I guess he learned some science at science camp.
Parker is back at camp this week. We carpool with Kika so I drive Aidan in the morning and she picks them up in the afternoon.
The conversations Aidan and Parker have are pretty hilarious. Mostly because they are both so serious.
Like these this morning.
Rachel: Did you know we are going camping together this weekend, Aidan and there is going to be a pool there?
Parker: I've been in 2 one-foot pools.
Aidan: You mean a 2 foot pool?
Parker: No. A one foot pool. One in Reno that was a circle, but not the hot tub and one in calistoga.
Aidan: I've been in a five-foot pool at Jimmy's and I splashed around. But I wasn't allowed to sink.
Parker: I've been in a 3-5 foot pool.
Aidan: I've been in 8-foot pool.
Parker: I've been in a google-foot pool.
Elizabeth: I've been in an Infinity-foot pool.
Parker and Aidan: (Laughter)
They also discussed the various ages of all their non-immediate family.
After some discussion of who rode what bikes at what speed at the campground...
Parker: Oliver is 7 and Peter is 10. Julia is 3.
Aidan: My cousins are 15, 18 and 21.
Parker: I have two grandmas.
Aidan: I have one grandma. The other one died when my mom was 14.
Parker: The names of my grandmas are Grandma Judy and Grammy.
Aidan: My dad's grandma died. She went to Heaven.
Miranda: She's dead?
Aidan: Yes. She was old.
Parker: Grandma Judy is old.
Aidan: How old is she?
Parker: She is 68.
Aidan: Wow. That is old.
Parker: But, you know what? Grammy is older.
It went on and on like this for a good long time.
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Miranda wanted to make a movie with her singing. So she made up this "song."
Warning: This might be one only a mother could love. I especially like when she calls camp site...camping science.
The river we hung out at on Wednesday was pretty shallow in most parts. But there was a rather deep part conveniently located next to a big rock. Some teenagers had to jump off that rock over and over. But not before Michael did it. This (and crossing the river) were the only times he got wet.
A while back, I donated some babysitting to our twin club fundraising raffle. Tonight, I am doing the sitting. I'm watching 20 month old twins who are the most delightful kids I've met in a long time. They are identical but after 20 minutes or so, I could tell them apart. Sara and Caroline couldn't quite talk yet, but said many words like milk, aya (which meant blankie), again, more, and a few others. They were immediately fine with me and although gave me the "huh" eye a few times, generally thought I was pretty funny. Turns out the nanny that watches them from time to time was Parker's nanny before the twins came along.
I can't believe I had two 20 months olds. Let alone one 21 month old and newborns.
The Long Family and the Martin/Marcus Family met up in Monterey for 6 days of adventure.
We stayed in a hotel in Monterey for one day and didn't do much except enjoy the pool and hot tub, eat take out Chinese food and jump on beds.
Then we drove down to Big Sur where we camped for 5 days. We had a nice campsite. It was big, had good climbing logs in it and was conveniently located near a well lit bathroom. We had a couple neighbors (first some Germans and then some stoner/surfer dudes), but they were all quiet.
We made s'mores the first night and the kids were pretty damn happy about that. I had some s'mores without the graham crackers or marshmellows. Michael, of course, passed.
The next day we went to the beach. It was a bit cold, but that didn't stop the kids from enjoying the water and sand.
We were close to a river and although it was cold, some of the braver people went in. I was not one of them. We did all have to cross it to get to the sunny patch, but some got rides.
We spent most days just sitting around the camp site, playing Yahtzee or riding bikes around the campground. Elizabeth had trouble the first day, but then was a maniac, tearing around the place like a 15 year old boy on a dirt bike. Miranda kept up with her and the boys well and never seemed to get upset that she was the only one with training wheels. (Well.. Julia was on a trike still, which she didn't notice either.)
We had a fire going all evening and morning as it was cold there and the kids kept asking why we weren't eating s'mores all the time. Miranda, despite the fact that we had a nice campstove toaster, tried to roast hers.
On the second to last day there, we took a little walk that turned into a longer walk along the river. The kids did great and we ended up at a group campground that had an ampitheatre. Someone suggested "doing a show" and for the next 30 minutes or so, the kids alternated doing little skits of the three little pigs, red riding hood and the gingerbread girl. It was all hilarious and ridiculously cute. And something about the situation made the adults talk like Julia child. First me, then Amy, and Eran.
Sleeping wasn't great, but since we all went to bed so early, it wasn't too bad either. On the last night, it was almost decent. All in all, a very good trip. Dirty, but good.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Elizabeth has been asking to take her training wheels off for a while. I didn't think she was quite ready, but after I promised her yesterday and then we ran out of time, I felt like I really needed to take her this morning. Our quick trip to the school before leaving for camping turned into a family event and Eli, as she is known to do, proved me wrong.
At one day shy of 3 years and 10 months, she rides.
The first one is the first time she got it. We didn't have the camera ready at first and she is kinda far away.
The second one is the second time she got it. She sits there for a long time contemplating what she is about to do and then she does it. Be patient.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
For the last two days, the kids have been building something in the back yard. They have been tying bands, ropes, hula hoops, stuffed animals and really anything else they can find on these two trees. Yesterday, Elizabeth and Parker spent at least an hour out there discussing the situation, adding to it, taking stuff away, and generally admiring their work. Every so often they would ask me to untie something or come look, but mostly they just worked together to figure it out. They called it their "exercise" probably because they were using one of my elastic work out bands that I have told them is for "exercise".
I was so damn pleased with the whole thing. With the fact that they were negotiating things on their own. That they were building something out of nothing. That they were being creative. And that they were having fun. I kept thinking how nice it was to have kids that got along.
But when a third kid (Miranda on this day, but Elizabeth the next when Miranda and Parker were adding to it) got in the mix, the whole thing went to shit. Grabbing, kicking, fighting, yelling. Parker must have come to get me 10 times in as many minutes to tell me that Miranda threw something at him or Elizabeth kicked him. (I was pleased he was doing this rather than hitting them back, but man it got old.) I got sick of saying, "Why did she kick you? Did you tell her you don't like to be kicked. Elizabeth...did you kick him? No? Really?" etc, etc, etc
I kept thinking that Elizabeth was the main problem causer and instigator, but then I recall how nicely she and Parker played for so long the first day and just give up trying to figure it out.
The girls finished a two week swim class at a local park. Out of the 8 days, one day was July 5th, one was canceled due to a power outage and one we missed as we were in Calistoga. So really they only took 5 classes. And they cried and screamed about the cold on 2 of them, so really they only had a real class 3 times.
But apparently that was enough for the teacher to see that they could swim better than the average 3 and 3/4 year old. Ebba picked up their "report cards" on the last day when we were out. Out of the three choices of complete, improving, incomplete, they got complete on everything except water safety which they must have covered the last day.
The comment on Elizabeth's was: "I recommend the Olympics!"
The comment on Miranda's was: "Amazing swimmers!"
I'm not sure if both comments were meant for both girls or if the pluralization of Miranda's comment wasn't un-intentional.
In any case, on the days they weren't screaming, they had a great time with their pals at the pool.
Friday, July 16, 2010
We were driving home this evening after our sushi/shopping date and the driver in front of me slams on his breaks on the freeway for no reason. I start yelling about why he did that and asked Michael if he could believe it. Michael said that what he couldn't believe is that I am still shocked that there are drivers like this and wonders when I will ever learn to just chill out. He said I should just expect it and he can't believe I don't.
Then he said, "The irony is that I am surprised about your completely predictable reaction to this behavior."
Thursday, July 15, 2010
As previously discussed, I pretty much love going to Calistoga to hang out by a pool or get a massage. The added benefit of friends and good food make it simply divine.
A friend mentioned that she had taken her kids there. I had thought that the kids would love the warm pools, but the place we go to isn't very kid friendly and I would be too worried about them bothering everyone there. So I asked her where she went and booked it for a night. An experiment of sorts. Could we all enjoy a trip and all relax or would it be all work and worry for me (Michael couldn't go due to work and our camping trip next week.)
Yesterday was the day so after swim class and camp pick up, we drove up there. It's a short drive (just over an hour), but the last 10 minutes through St Helena is hellish.
We arrived early, but our room was ready so we got settled and got to the pool quick. And when I say pool, I mean 4 pools. A wading pool, a soaking pool, a lap pool and a hot tub (for adults only). The kids went from pool to pool putting on vests and taking off vests. I was still worried about all the people getting splashed and all the noise my kids were making, but no one seemed bothered. There were people there with young kids, but none of them could swim like mine. Almost everyone stopped me to ask how old they all were. When Parker swam across the bottom of the pool in one breath, he literally got applause.
It was a tad stressful for me to keep enforcing all the rules but the kids did very well.
Of course we had to have ice cream from the snack shack convenient located 10 steps from our room and the pool.
After a few hours swimming, we took showers and walked into town (2 blocks away) and had a lovely mexican dinner followed by a quick stop at the candy store (where Parker picked a red vine, Elizabeth picked a peppermint stick and Miranda picked Andes mints. It was probably one of the most relaxing kid dinners I've had as they all colored and drew the whole time while I ate the whole time.
Back at the hotel, we swam some more which the kids thought was just awesome and then went in for bed. Everyone got to talk to Daddy and then we read a couple books and everyone fell asleep. Since we only had one room, I read a litte bit and then fell asleep at 9:30.
The girls got the camera when Parker was talking to Michael. Here are the highlights.
Everyone was happy in their sleeping bags. Miranda fell out of the bed on top of Elizabeth in the middle of the night and Parker scooted clear across the room, but neither interuptions caused major problems.
The pool opened at 8am. Elizabeth and Parker were up by 6:30, but me and Miranda got to sleep until 7am when Parker announced it was breakfast time and stood by my face saying, "It's 7. It's 7." The kids swam in each of the pools for a couple hours. Elizabeth perfected her flip. Parker perfected his handstand and Miranda perfected her silly face. Surprisingly, they all chose to draw on the way home rather than watch a dvd. It was a good short trip and one that I look forward to doing again...with another adult.