Friday, July 30, 2010

Portaits, finally!

We haven’t done this in far too long.  We got pics of both boys when Max was a newborn.  I took Max’s picture at about 4 months old.  That’s it.  Oops!

So, finally, I took them in today for pictures.  We didn’t order all of these, but I spent enough to get the photo CD.  Here are some of the photos from today, unedited & straight from the disk.

Amazing, Alex didn’t freak out, cry, or squeeze a stuffed monkey for dear life.  Max didn’t crawl away.  Now, getting them to *smile* in the same picture?  Well…here’s what we got:0008 0013 0018This picture is the reason that Alex cooperated.  When we promised him he could sit on the motorcycle if he did a nice job with his pictures, it’s all he needed to hear:

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I didn’t want these, but the photographer encouraged me to have them taken anyway.  So, just for fun… 0057 0065 0072

Friday, July 23, 2010

Tiny Talk

Keith commented the other day that you can hold a somewhat intelligent conversation with Alex now, and it’s kind of fun!  Sometimes, he just amazes us with his vocabulary.  Other times, he’s just plain funny.  Here are a few from the past month or so…

We’ve had a TON of flies around the house lately.  It seems like we’re constantly grabbing the fly swatter.  One day, while sitting at the table, Alex told me, “Mom, I un-couraged that fly to go away.”

Outside of Target, Alex noticed a red steel post in the concrete.  It has a circle-shaped piece near the top, right at Alex’s chest level.  He dashed away from me as we were going into the store, running to that post while shrieking joyfully, “A wheel!  I have to steer the wheel!” He was a bit disappointed when he realized it didn’t steer, looked up at me, and said, “Oh, maybe it not a wheel.”

While in Target, on the same trip, I was replacing Max’s birthday gift for the third time.  (I have a strange affection for this B. Whacky Ball, and keep giving it away as birthday gifts for other people.)  Anyway, I started to go down the aisle and noticed Alex wasn’t next to me.  Turning around, I found him standing about 2 feet behind me by a display of giant bouncy balls.  I reminded him that he must stay by Mommy in the store, and he said, “But Mom, these balls fascinate me!”

The other day at lunch, I gave Alex chocolate milk as a special treat.  He took a sip, got a big grin on his face, and said, “This choc-o-wit milk is SO tasty!”

Alex wanted me to put the baby on a regular swing at the park.  I told him that we can’t put a baby on a big swing.  He replied, “But mom, your baby is growing into a big boy every day.” (Don’t remind me, Alex!)

While cooking with Mommy:  “Recipe.  Recipee.  ReciPEEE!  Just like PEE in the potty!”

We had VBS last week at our church.  Alex misses it, and he was asking for Abby the other day.  (Abby was the preschool craft lady.)  I wasn’t thinking VBS when he asked about Abby at dinner one night.  When I finally figured it out, I said, “Oh, Abby from VBS?”  Alex answered, “YES!  That’s what I talkin’ about!”

And the sweetest one, the one that made me teary-eyed.  The baby got into the dog’s dish today, and water got spilled all over the kitchen floor.  Without a moment’s hesitation, Alex turned around, opened the towel drawer, and said, “Oh, I should cween that up!” Then he got down on his hands and knees with a dry dishrag, and he mopped up all the water.  I make a lot of mistakes, but I guess I taught him right on that one!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Alex Drives A Car

While he visited with us, Kyle helped Alex to “drive” Daddy’s car. 

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It was so cute that I grabbed the camera for a quick video. Alex’s answer to my question just cracked me up! 

Fank You, Daddy, for my new pwayset!

In June, we bought a playset for the boys.  We’d spent some time last year at Menards comparing different sets, and this year we did it…the boys have their playset!  We waited until it was on sale, and then it rung up at about $100 under the advertised sale price.  Wahoo!  We won’t complain!

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First of all, let me just say that when a box reads “ready to assemble” it doesn’t really mean that it’s ready to assemble.  It means you don’t have to cut the wood.  You still have to mark and drill about 8,042 holes.  Poor Keith!

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Keith is an excellent handyman, and he’s a perfectionist.  He made sure every little detail was completed exactly as it should be.  He worked on this playset for short bits of time, whenever he could grab half an hour.  He’s the kind of guy who hates to have a project hanging over his head, so it drove him crazy to have this project take weeks to complete.

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Finally, he was able to complete it (with a little, uh, help from Alex…) on the day we returned home from our trip to Indianapolis.  He could devote a big chunk of time to finishing it.

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As soon as Keith put on the swings, Alex was ecstatic.  He ran out to the swings saying (entirely unprompted), “Fank you, Daddy, for my new pwayset!” 

Here’s his first ride:June2010 465

He still giggles with joy EVERY time we set him on the swing.  He requests, “Swing me higher!” or “Swing me high enough to touch the house!”  (Which is hilarious when you consider the distance between the playset and the house!)

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We added a baby swing for Max about a week later, and he just sits in his swing saying, “wheee, eeee, eee” with a smile or a contented look on his face.July2010 222

Alex has learned to safely climb the ladder, although I still watch him like a hawk. 

July2010 226This little boy, who was very nervous around slides, is now going down the slide on his own.

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He loves to play in the tower, look through the (lens-free) telescope, and thinks it’s great fun when Mama or Daddy join him in the tower.

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What we have is more than enough, but I like that this gives us gift ideas for the next few years.  When we no longer need a baby swing, we can always consider a glider as a birthday present.  I think Alex would really get a kick out of adding a steering wheel in the tower, too, so that’s another future gift idea…and it doesn’t take up room in our house, always a plus!

July2010 225Look very carefully, and you’ll see a little head peeking out by the top of the slide…   
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I know that, in time, some of the novelty will wear off.  Still, though, this was a GREAT investment for two energetic little boys…and a little green friend!   (Look closely…)

July2010 232Yes, Daddy…as Alex says, THANK YOU for our new playset!  It even makes Mama happy!

Friday, July 16, 2010

We Miss Kyle!

Keith’s brother, sister-in-law, and niece just returned from a mission trip to Haiti.  While Kevin, Leanne, and Jessica were gone, Kyle came and stayed with us…and we LOVED it!

We shared him with Grandma and Papa, but I think we would have been glad to selfishly keep him all to ourselves!  Kyle was so good, helpful, and fun to have around!

He is SO good with our little boys!  Kyle is patient, creative, and fun with the little ones.  Alex even fell asleep one night happily saying Kyle’s name over and over again, “Ky-wol, Ky-wol, Ky-wol” and when he woke the next morning, Kyle’s name was the first word out of his mouth!  Alex LOVED having his big cousin stay with us!

These pictures showed up in random order, but here are some of their adventures:

Kyle reading Alex a bedtime storyJuly2010 200 

making pancakes together one morning

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Lots of wrestling!July2010 007 July2010 008

morning playtime (still in pajamas) on the new swingset

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Kyle & Max doing “So Big” together at breakfast…July2010 012  July2010 014

…which is a very tiring game for a 10 month old ;)July2010 016

video games in the bonus room

there were several nights when I barely saw Keith or Kyle after the little boys went to bed – they just hung out upstairs together!

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Driving Lessons (?!)

There’s a video to go along with this one…I’ll try to post it this weekend!

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Football in the yard

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Driving up to visit Nana and take her to Steak & Shake

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Nana & her 3 great grandsons

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Swimming at Uncle Jim’s house on the 4th of July
These are all the great-grandkids, minus Jessica.
(Oh, and Keith & Kari to hold the little ones)July2010 045  July2010 053 

Grandma also took Kyle and Alex back to Uncle Jim’s house a few days later, but I have no pictures of that…

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Alex learned about water balloons, water guns, and hoses.
(And I learned what happens when Kyle gets a hose of icy-cold water near his Aunt Dawn.  BRRR!)

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ALL the grandparents came over one night, and we pulled out the little pool for the boys…

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Kyle got to be here to see Max learn to stand up and to crawl!

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Alex invented a new game called Belly Buttons.  He asks Kyle to “open his shirt”, and then Alex places his belly button against Kyle’s belly button.  I’m not sure what purpose this serves other than making Alex happy.  (Word of warning: it’s not limited to just Kyle.  If you come to our house, there’s a good chance that Alex will ask you to “open your shirt”.)

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A little relaxing & TV watching…

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Guitar “Jam” sessions with Kyle & Alex

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a backyard fire one night, with s’mores and…uh…wrestling?
Jessica was here last summer, and we had a very similar night in the backyard…only Jessica stayed in her chair, chatted, and roasted marshmallows.  Kyle ran in circles, pummeled Keith to the ground, and shouted a lot.  Oh, the differences between boys and girls!

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Kyle even helped me to get things ready for preschool VBS at church one day.  What a help that was, to not worry about 2 little boys while getting the preschool room ready for the week.  Thanks, Kyle!

Grandma & Papa did some more creative things, like taking Kyle to the movies and to Indiana Beach.   We kind of stuck to the simpler things, because of our little ones. 

WHAT A JOY it was having him here!  We’re so thankful that we got to enjoy him while the rest of his family served in Haiti.  I think it’s a week we’ll remember for a long time to come!  I know Alex won’t soon forget it.  Thanks for being such a fun big cousin, Kyle!