Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Blueberry Mania!

Today a sort of crazy thing happened. It is the end of the month, a few days before grocery day, so I always have to get creative when feeding the kids. So, this morning I made blueberry pancakes. They really liked them (and so did I!) Since it is Wednesday, it was time for story time, so we loaded up, got our smoothies, and headed towards the library. We were late and had to sit in the back (I won't take the time to comment on the kids' behavior. I've already written a post along those lines...ugh!). Our letter of the day was "B", our color of the day was blue, and our word of the day was blueberries. Cool, I thought, and I said to the kids "Remember how we had blueberry pancakes for breakfast?" They were ignoring me at the time. Ms. Donna read "Blueberries for Sal" and then proceeded to tell us we were having a special snack today. Blueberry bread!! Now, I know this all sounds incredibly yummy, but Lyla has been known to have some issues with blueberries. What are the chances that the one day I EVER make blueberry pancakes, we have blueberry bread at story time??? Sorry Katy!! The kids did have a great time, though. Ms. Donna let them come up front and sample a blueberry. Drew went back for seconds. And then pitched a fit because he couldn't have another one!

We also did a little no TV experiment today. (Well, with the exception of the video in the car) I know lots of people with kids Drew and Lyla's age don't let their kids watch TV at all. I'm not one of those people!! But we had a great day anyway. After lunch we played Katy's version of "Treasure Hunt" and had a great time. Playing with toddlers is a little like improv-eventually you are just looking around the room at the "props" making things up!!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The dog days of summer

I did some research on the phrase "Dog Days of Summer." Don't you just love the internet? You can find out pretty much anything you ever wanted to know. This phrase is originally Greek, having to do with Sirius the "Dog Star". In ancient times a brown dog would be sacrificed in order to appease the rage of Sirius, which they believed caused the hot, steaming weather. Do you think it would work now???? I know it was the same me who, only a short while ago, was bemoaning the cold weather, but SERIOUSLY. It is so dang hot outside. When a walk to the mailbox makes one break into a sweat, you know it's hot. (Well, unless you're pregnant, which I most definitely am NOT!)

Here is a quote I found about the Dog Days and how the ancient Greeks felt about it. It pretty much sums up things around here.
"When the seas boiled, wine turned sour, dogs grew mad, and all creatures became languid, causing to man burning fevers, hysterics, and phrensies". Hysterics and "phrensies"...sounds about right!

We did find a great new place to play today. There is a great playground/park behind the elementary school right near our house. We went to play this morning and had a great time. As an added bonus we were the only ones there! We can definitely walk there from now on. Here are some pics from the whopping 45 mintues we could play before we all passed out!

Here is Drew on the suspension bridge. I started calling this the "Shaaaaky shaaaky bridge" See what I mean? Too many cartoons...

Do you notice the bright red face and the sweat soaked hair plastered to her head???

Charming, no??

It seems that Drew is beginning to cultivate a sense of humor. I love people with a good sense of humor. Laughing is one of my very favorite things to do, actually. Funny people are the best kind of people to be around. Of course, said humor is all in the eyes of the beholder (or noses, as the case may be).

Hilarious, right??

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Chez Hull

In another attempt at a "beat the heat" activity, we made cookies today!! The kids did so, so great. It was really a lot of fun!

Here are some action shots:

Drew and Lyla shaking up the dry ingredients

Drew and Lyla eating bananas. This particular recipe calls for banana puree in the batter. I really thought they would love smashing the bananas with forks, but instead they dug right in to eating them! Ha!

Drew and Lyla stirring the batter. They didn't even maul each other in the process. =)

Be Kind, Please Rewind

New phase. Drew likes to watch the same clips of shows over and over and over and over. This is my fault. I should've never done it that first time and he would be none the wiser. In this age of digital cable, we have OnDemand, which means we can catch up with Dora, Blue, or the Backyardigans anytime, day or night. On one hand, it's great, because I can just pick out a show whenever I want (ok, need) it! Remember when you were a little kid and you would almost mourn when a show was over, because your only choice was to wait until the next day when it would be on again? Oh no. Not these kids. Every TV wish is my command. We really don't watch much TV-well, kid TV anyway! But now, we are watching "The Map" sing his dumb map song a million times in a row, or only watching the opening number of the Backyardigans. I'm hearing these songs in my sleep. You know it's bad when you're washing dishes singing, "I'm the map, I'm the map, I'm the map, I'm the map, I'm the maaaap!!"

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Look Out, Hollywood!!

Today when Lyla came in my house she was wearing pink pajamas and her purple sunglasses. It was pretty much the funniest thing I've ever seen. She has been in full character mode today.

This is a pic of her eating breakfast:

Later she had my cell phone and was walking around saying, "Hello?...Hey!...Doing?" HILARIOUS. How many time has she heard me or her mom say those exact things?? Then she started singing "Row, Row, Row Your Boat". My favorite part is when she sings in a really high voice "Merrily, merrily, merrily". Oh my gosh. She is so stinkin' cute.

We had such a great time in Knoxville. Friday night we got to spend time with our best friends the Pinkners and the Utterbacks. Beth and David have a new little baby boy=#3!! His name is Owen James and he is definitely an Utterback. He looks just like his brothers. I know Beth and David are exhausted, but it was just so great to all be together. We really miss all of them a bunch. Weston's birthday party was awesome! All of the kids (and there were bunches of them!) did so great! Drew loved eating a whole cupcake with about 10 tons of icing on top, as well as 2 lollipops-his first ever! Talk about sugar overload!!

Monday we all went to the zoo and had the best zoo day ever! I was definitely the most excited of anyone, including the kids! LOL! The Knoxville Zoo is ten billion times better than the one here. I'm so glad we went. We are definitely going back, since we didn't even come close to seeing everything. Drew is still talking about the camel who leaned his head out of the pen. He keeps reminding me that he did NOT want to pet the camel. Ha! Like a big lame-o I forgot my camera. As soon as I can get pictures from my sisters, I'll post some.

Monday afternoon we went to visit my grandmother-"Ga Ga"- and my Aunt Brenda. Talk about nuts! Three toddlers in Ga-Ga's house!! Drew was shy at first but came around. At one point he was giving Ga-Ga all the stuff off of her coffee table! Right before we left Ga-Ga came out to the porch and Drew gave her a kiss on the hand. So sweet! He is still talking about that, too!!

Tuesday on our way home, Drew and I stopped off at my friend Mandie's house. She has a little girl who is Lyla's age. We had so much fun playing with them. She also has two older sons who are so freakin' funny.

It was such a fun trip, but so busy. I think after a two hour nap yesterday, I'm finally getting caught up!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Made For TV

There are some days that I would swear there is a TV crew secretly tailing me. They are setting up all kinds of shenanigans and obstacles for me to put up with. Then, they are taping me trying to survive these capers and are playing them for all the world to see. And laugh at. If this is not the case, then somebody is missing out on a LOAD of money.

Today, for example, was a complete sitcom. Everything started out normal. I loaded the kids in the car to drop off the recycling and head to story time. Well, after I went back into the house 3 times. After I dropped off the recycling, I realized that I forgot my library books that were due. I had just enough time to go BACK home, get the books and get to story time on time. Bad call. By the time we got to the library it was raining, and every parent in Bellevue decided to come out for the stories. We had to park in the back forty. Did I mention it was raining? I knew there was no way I could let either of the kids walk. In case you haven't walked with a toddler lately, they aren't exactly in a hurry. I had no choice but to sling each kid on a hip and run across the parking lot. Are you taking a moment to visualize this?? Me. Two thirty pound toddlers. Hauling it across the parking lot. In the rain. By the time we got in the library, my hair, which I had painstakingly washed, dried and straightened for the first time in forever looked something like this:

Amazingly, the kids did great during story time. Drew gave "Bear" three kisses and two high fives. Lyla really, really wanted to, but just couldn't bring herself to. Next up, the amazingly long jaunt back to the car. Holding both kids. I put both kids in the back seat, giving Lyla strict instructions to go to her seat, which she did, after playing with my keys. I got my keys from Lyla, started the car, (because it's a million degrees) and got out of my door to buckle Lyla in. I closed my door and went to open Lyla's and it was locked!!!!!!!!!! MY KEYS WERE IN THE CAR. Along with the kids. Holy you-know-what. Thank the Lord we have OnStar and thank the Lord my AWESOME husband renewed it in the midst of all the craziness he has to deal with. ( I owe you big time, Dan!) I was in a flat panic, but luckily when we bought our car the guy who did my orientation put the onstar sticker on the window so I could see it in just such an instance. I borrowed a phone from a random lady in the parking lot and within about 2 minutes the doors were unlocked. In case I haven't told you yet, I'm in love with my car. I know it's a big gas guzzling nightmare, but seriously??? Two minutes and the doors were unlocked.

Someone, somewhere was taping this, I just know it. Maybe for a "what not to do" video. Most likely for a slapstick comedy show.

Play date!!

Monday we had our monthly play date at our house. We had a great time playing in the water and the tent I set up in the backyard. I'll let the pictures tell the story.

The girls had a great time splashing in the pool

The boys had a great time digging in the sand

They all had a great time going in and out of the tent

Drew had a great time bossing Aunt Katy around. In the tent, out of the tent, in the tent, out of the tent

And a HUGE thank you to Granna for the awesome water table!!! It was a major hit!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


How long has it been since you have eaten pop-ice?? I hope not very long because, they are delicious. I made a dreadful, dreadful mistake of giving one to Drew and letting him see the entire stash in our freezer. He is seriously an addict. On Sunday, when the Kelleys and Uncle Sam were over we ate some pops after playing outside. Here was the scene:

We were cracking up laughing at the popsicle juice flying everywhere, and the kids shivering half to death but refusing to relinquish the freezing cold popsicle. Drew talks about pop-pops all day long. I won't even get started on the time that he was in time-out around 4 times within 30 minutes of getting up in the morning. All the trouble was rooted in the blasted popsicles. Why, oh why, couldn't he just have a popsicle for breakfast??? I'm sure if he were a little older he would've told me all the other kids were having them for breakfast. Sigh. Oh well. I don't think any kid has ever died from having too many popsicles...good thing, too!

Here is a picture of Drew after I asked him if likes popsicles. He is giving a most emphatic, "Yeeeeaaahhhh!"

In this picture Drew is "posing". All of a sudden he wanted me to take pictures and he would lean his head over on his shoulder and say, "Cheese". This went on for a good 15 minutes or so!

Drew says he would love for all the people he loves to stop what they're doing and go have a popsicle!!!

Oh Say Can You See??


One of my most important life lessons goes something like this: "Life is what happens when you're making other plans." This is good inspiration to make the most of every moment, even if it doesn't turn out quite like you had hoped.

On Thursday night, 4th of July Eve, I found out that a) Daniel had to work all weekend and b) Granna had been kidnapped by her evil boss and would not be able to come down. Boo. For some reason I was SUPER excited about July 4th this year. Maybe I'm super patriotic. Or maybe I just look for any reason to have a party! Things were not looking very party-ish. So, I found some new plans! First, Uncle Sam came over (which is so appropriate to party with Uncle Sam on Independence Day!!) He saved the day! He played and made cookies and was basically just super fun uncle all day. Yay for fun uncles!

We ended up at a neighborhood cookout that was really fun. Thankfully one of the moms brought mac and cheese. Handy, since the only other thing Drew wanted to eat was the ice out of the beer bucket. We had to leave before the fireworks fun. I wasn't too sad about it since I wasn't sure how Drew would do with the fireworks.

The Kelleys came over on Sunday for a cookout. We pigged out and watched Roger Federer lose Wimbledon for the first time in like 25 years. It was really fun to have a chance to eat out on the deck and just hang out while the kiddos slept.

We missed Granna and Papaw Mike so much, but we did our best to celebrate our freedom without them!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

They Melt in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hand

I mentioned before that Drew discovered his love for M&Ms on the way back from the pool one day. Well, at least I think that's when he discovered them. I'm starting to wonder if he's had them some other time. The M&Ms I had were in a plastic baggie (they were super cute personalized ones that said, "Girls Weekend 2008") So, imagine my shock when yesterday, as Drew was "sorting" the mail, he flipped totally out when he saw a picture of a pack of M&Ms!! How on earth did he know what the package looked like?? (Grammy?? Aunt Kristin??) Man, it was hilarious. Since we had to run down to the hardware store, I told him I'd get him some. He squealed with delight when I handed him the pack. After I paid for them, he leaned over and gave the store clerk a kiss!!!!!!!!! My child, the one who will hardly LOOK at a store clerk, gave this random woman a kiss!! He's pimping himself out for some M&Ms!!!! In case there was any doubt, he is definitely my child. Oh, the power of sugar.

This has all led to my shameless use of bribery to help us through the tough times. Poor Drew is a bundle of misery right now as he is teething, which in turn has caused a reflux flare. My fabulous little boy from the past several weeks has turned into one big fit of rage. It is so sad when he just bites and bites Ribbit. Grrr. I hate teething!! So, in order to survive, I'm using his new found love of candy to keep him somewhat in line. :) It's much more fun than time-out or spanking. I'm really hoping he is feeling better before the weekend-or else I'm going to need one giant bucket of M&Ms!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Somebody Call a Locksmith!

Drew and Lyla both have a new trick. It involves turning the dead bolt on the door-usually when I'm outside!! The first time this happened, I was unloading the kids from the car. Usually I unload Lyla first, stick her inside the door, and then unload Drew. Imagine my surprise when I went to open the door and it was locked!! By some miracle, I had my keys with me. (If you know me at all you know EXACTLY how much of a miracle this truly was!)

Yesterday I dragged Drew on the longest grocery shopping trip of his entire life. He was a total champ the whole time, and then, poor thing, had to do more shopping after his nap. By the time we got home, he was totally over it. And can you blame him? He got into a serious trouble making mode. And as understanding as I sound now, I wasn't so tolerant yesterday. We went on a walk with a friend in the neighborhood-he loves her and I thought he might like a stroller ride. Not so much. He proceeded to try and stand up in the stroller the whole time. And I really could understand why-he was so tired of riding. But, mid-walk is not a great time to decide you're through. Our only choice is to go home-which includes MORE walking! Needless to say by the time we got back we were seriously on each other's nerves. I took him out of his stroller and put him inside the door and went back to the stroller to get all our stuff. Which didn't include my keys. And he locked me out. I know he's just 18 months old, but I swear he did it on purpose. He was done with me!! At that moment I almost just sat down in the garage and had a major meltdown. What the heck was I going to do??!!?? I had no idea what time Dan would be home, and my phone was inside. Naturally. And then I had a thought...there might be a slight chance the back door was unlocked. Oh, please let it be!!!!!!! Thank God-literally-it was. We then had major lessons in "Don't ever, ever, touch the lock again," and "Keys: Don't leave the house without them!"