Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Pumpkin Heads

Over the past two years, Colin's Mom has knitted some amazing hats for the kids.  A couple of weeks ago, she sent the kids these hats and they have gotten so much attention.  It is difficult to tell from these photos, but the hats have a stem and leaves on the side, my little adorable pumpkin heads.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Junior pilots

The kids finally got to go on a trip that Colin was working.  They were so excited about getting to see the cockpit that apparently Sophia was still talking about it in class today.

Pumpkin Patch

Pony Rides!

Sophia's pre-school had a field trip to the pony farm and Keenan got to go too.  He ended up on the same pony he rode last year and they both had a great time.

The Apple Eating Gang

A few weeks ago we went apple picking with our friends and their daughter, Anneke.  The kids had a great time picking apples but even more fun eating them.

All About Sophia

Approximately three weeks ago, Sophia started pre-school. She only attends for two hours, two times a week, but she absolutely loves it. On her first day of school I was a little stressed out but not for the reasons one might assume. I had arranged for a baby-sitter to stay with Keenan while I spent some time getting Sophia settled in class. However, when the baby-sitter overslept, I found myself scrambling to get Keenan in some clothes and both of them strapped into their car seats and on the road.
I managed to arrive in time but my shirt was soaked in sweat and my nerves were a little frayed. Keenan got one look at all the toys and books and made a beeline for the nearest truck. Which was all fine and dandy until the teacher rang the bell and I had to pry his little body from the rocking horse he had discovered. Many tears and screams later, I was heading out the door, but not before making sure that Sophia was handling this new adventure okay. As she sat down in the class circle, she looked at me and waved and said "Bye Mommy, I'll see you later." I had expected she might cry but foolishly did not anticipate that the only one who would have tears in her eyes was me. Having to deal with Keenan's meltdown saved me from an emotional meltdown of my own, so I guess it all worked out in the end.
I know it is cliche, but I am constantly struck by how fast our little girl is growing up. Her vocabulary is astounding and sometimes exceeds the adults around her but she is still a little shy and tentative in new situations. She is gradually finding her voice and when someone asks her name, she finally is willing to softly say "Sophia." If somebody calls her Sophie, she nicely corrects them with a smile, saying "my name is Sophia." Most of the time she says please and thank you and you're welcome without being reminded. She has learned to write her first name in school and loves pointing out the letters in words that she sees on signs.
When we drive in the car, her favorite game is to point out every single UPS truck she sees. A little background might be helpful here. Last year, Colin interviewed at UPS and was placed in their hiring pool. We were all thrilled beyond belief and expected he would start some time in 2009. Unfortunately, the confluence of two events has put that expectation on hold. The pilot retirement age was raised to 65 and the economy has taken its painful and much talked about down turn. We are still hopeful that Colin will be able to switch from blue to brown sometime in the near future but, in the meantime, Sophia has made it her mission to shout UPS whenever she sees a truck. I have a feeling our local UPS driver must feel like a celebrity when he shows up at our house since Sophia makes it known that she thinks he is terrific..
Sophia has an incredibly complicated relationship with her brother. She adores him and is very protective of him, sweet to him if he falls or is upset. On the other hand, she doesn't hesitate to start big brawls with him and is often unrepentant after she has pushed him or scratched him. Two hours later, they are side by side, and she is showing him one of our photo albums from our trip to China. They will spend an hour, huddled together, intensely studying the photos and Sophia provides a steady stream of narration to accompany the photos. Before bed, they chase each other around the coffee table and laugh hysterically until they both collapse from exhaustion.
Sophia is extraordinarily observant and has the memory of an elephant. Her ability to accurately recall small details from events weeks or months behind us leave me feeling ancient and oblivious. She is a mercurial little being. All sunshine and smiles one moment, pensive and withdrawn the next, and then perhaps angry and oppositional only to exude bonhomie the very next breath. She is affectionate and loving, giving unexpected hugs and lovely compliments.
To sum it up, I am so grateful I was lucky enough to become a Mom and can hardly believe I almost opted to never have children. I would have missed so much. Sophia is an indescribable gift and her presence in our lives humbles me.

All About Keenan

Keenan, wee little Keenan. Three weeks ago, you turned two. You celebrated that day by graduating to your very big boy bed (your crib converted into a full size bed). I was worried you would be afraid of sleeping in this great big bed, but you immediately took to it and call it your "boy bed." On your birthday, you nearly made yourself sick on cake and ice cream but you loved every minute of it.
How much you have changed this past twenty months. You are no longer a baby boy barely able to hold up his own head and incapable of holding down formula. You dash around at lightening speed and always seem to have energy to spare. You are funny and bright, active and vocal. Singing is one of your favorite pastimes and there is nothing you would rather listen to than the Beatles. You sing along with the songs, or at least, try to. When "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" comes on, you scream "Hey" along with John Lennon and then you laugh hysterically and make Sophia crack up.
You are so fond of Marz and like to hug him and say "Marzy good dog." You are besotted with horses and ride anything that resembles one, including Marz. One of your sources of amusement is throwing food at the dinner table. Pizza is one of the few sources of nourishment that is spared this fate. Well, that and Applejacks. When you were sick last week, you were allowed to watch TV shows for the first time. You quickly became fixated on "The Backyardagins." We are now required to watch this show nearly every night before bed.
Your devotion to toy cars has resulted in you being the proud owner of a vast collection of match box cars. Hours are spent driving the cars over every possible surface and racing them across the dining table and the floor. You recently discovered that you can send the cars flying off the coffee table and you never seem to tire of launching them across the room.
Two days ago, you had the first opportunity to fly in a plane piloted by Daddy. While waiting for the passengers to board, you were thrilled to sit in Daddy's lap and get to see all the buttons and equipment. You screamed and threw a tantrum when it was time to leave the cockpit. Since then, when you hear any plane fly overhead, you point and proudly yell, "my Daddy flies airplanes!"
Keenan, you have a heart of gold and I hope that never changes. Sure you can be infuriating when you refuse to go to sleep or decide you don't want to do something. But, above all, you are sweet, smart, inquisitive, sensitive and loving. Daddy and I want to know we are so proud and grateful that you are our son and how very much we love you. Happy 2nd Birthday Keenan Bear!


Being a mother means it is easy to feel guilty about any number of things.  At the moment, I seem to have a laundry list of things I feel bad about.  Not keeping our blog current made it to my list.  Sometimes I wonder if I really have the time, energy and inspiration to keep the blog going but then I remind myself that it is the best way for me to keep a record our family life as it unfolds and of our children grow up.  The problem with that notion is that it doesn't do me much good if I don't actually document anything that is happening.
In this time of uncertainty and upheaval, I find it hard to find the right words for what I am feeling and almost impossible to make myself create timely and consistent entries.  The end result is that I end up posting 10 entries on the same date.  Many of the events have long come and gone but I suppose it is a better alternative than simply giving up.  So here it goes, another flurry of blog entries likely followed by another drought.....C'est la vie.