A collection of my favourite daily moments in the last 1-2 weeks.
I was grooving to Dora the Explorer's "We Did It" song while stirring something at the stove. (Hey, if I have to listen to it, I may as well try to enjoy it.) Levi was watching me from his chair with a look of wide-eyed astonishment. I turned around and chuckled.
"I'm 'shaking my booty,'" I said.
"Oh," he said, but his expression didn't change.
"I'm dancing!" I explained further.
"Oh," he said again. The look in his eyes was something like Elaine would get every time she tried to "dance." If that's what you want to call it, Mom.
Hopefully, he's not scarred for life. :-)
Noah has been coming up with some pretty fun stuff over the last few weeks. Just now, as he was coming to give me a goodnight hug and kiss, he started asking me questions (e.g. stalling):
"Mom, who invented comics?"
"I don't know. Why?"
"Oh. Well, if he is still alive, I would like to say 'thank you' to him."
I smiled. "Well, I guess you'll have to do some research tomorrow and find out. But I don't think he's still alive."
Another thought occurred to him.
"Mom, who invented pianos?"
A short discourse followed about the era they were invented in, but the end result was, "I'm not sure. Look it up."
"Okay, Mom? Who invented bicycles?" He giggled.
"I used to know that one, but I forget. You will have to look it up on Wikipedia. Tomorrow. Now, go to bed!"
A few days ago, the temperatures here plummeted to below freezing, with some nasty wind and a little bit of snow thrown in. I've heard that elsewhere in Alberta had even more snow, which floors me--this is early, even for Alberta.
When he got home from school on Monday, Noah came in the door and announced, "I love winter, and I hate winter!"
"Okay," I said. Then he started on what could have been a prepared presentation.
"Why I Love Winter. One. We don't have to cut grass." He ticked it off on his finger. "Two. we get hot chocolate when we come in from outside. And three--" (Three has been redacted due to my faulty memory!)
I interrupted him there to do an urgent task, and said to come back and finish in a few moments. He picked up right where he left off a few minutes later.
"Why I Hate Winter. One. It's COLD!! Two. We have to go to school. And three..." Honestly, I'm not sure he came up with a three for this one.
Maybe Noah has a future in public speaking after all?
Last Sunday, Jason borrowed Brian's little Kubota tractor to haul dirt all around my yard for me. I am so thankful, because filling up all those new beds by wheelbarrow--while it would have been a fantastic workout for me--would have taken me all summer.
The tractor was a constant source of fascination for Levi. (Surprised?)
He thought his tricycle should go for a ride in it.
That's my boy!
Jude has been preparing a research and presentation project for the upcoming Heritage Fair, which he is doing in partnership with David M. Their project is talking about weapons and vehicles that Canada used in WWI. One day, after Jude had been reading up on tanks and had to get up for a moment to do something else, leaving his book on the couch, I looked over and saw this:
Get 'em started on reading young, I always say... just never thought to use a book on tanks before!
"Really? I didn't realize you were a murderer," replied Jason from his position by the stove.
"I only murder yolks," said Jabin. "Besides, he was being mean to me."
"I hope you don't start killing everyone who is mean to you," I called out from the office, where I was listening in. "'Cause that would be bad."
Without missing a beat, Jabin replied, "You're right. 'Cause Jude would be dead by now."
How sweet and pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together...
As soon as Jude took off his outside gear upon arriving home from school, he sidled into the living room with an impish grin on his freckled face.
"Mom, did you ever get your tongue stuck to metal in the playground?"
At -23C today, my imagination started filling with horrific images of the poor child who had to wait for the teachers to bring some hot water to melt their tongue off the swing set to release them, albeit a few taste buds short, from frozen captivity, induced by their own curiosity or stupidity. Noah had gone through that experience in kindergarten (as Jude would remind me of a few minutes later in this conversation.)
"No, I don't think so," I said, racking my brain. I had seen it happen a couple of times during my elementary-school years, once to a boy I often played with, but had not experienced it myself. "I was always smart enough to learn from the experience of others, and those who told me that doing that was a bad idea. Did it happen to someone at school today?"
"Yeah, this kid got his tongue stuck today."
"Oh, no!" I exclaimed. "Did it take long to get him unstuck?"
In a tumbled heap, Jude came clean. "Well, the kid was actually me. I got my tongue stuck while I was climbing. It was an accident."
My hand flew to cover my mouth, but my lips were trying to decide between a horrified gape and an outburst of raucous, but incredulous laughter. Somehow, they managed to combine the two.
"'This kid', eh? How on earth did you manage that?!"
"Well, I was climbing, and accidentally stuck out my tongue and it touched the pole, but it ripped off right away."
The sharp intake of breath I made was definitely tinged with horror, now, but my first-born was still smiling, so I figured it could not have been that dire. Amusement still tried to swamp the horror like a tidal wave, but mostly it just managed to make a mess of my facial expression. I calmed down after Jude showed me the tip of his tongue, which was missing a small strip of skin along one edge--it didn't look too serious, although I expressed sympathy about how it had felt eating his snack later that day with that bit of raw flesh in his mouth.
"Did you learn a lesson?"
"Yeah," he said, his grin sheepish now.
"This kid" sure manages to keep our lives interesting, that's for sure. :-)
"Look! I'm The Flulk!" he exclaimed, arms wide in the well-practised flourish a magician gives after he has just done his latest incredible, belief-defying trick, grinning from ear to ear. Jason and I looked up and burst out laughing.
Jabin had his pajamas on--but the pants were the red-legged, yellow-lightning-booted flannel ones I had made for his "The Flash" pjs a couple of months ago, while the shirt was the sleeveless black-and-green knit top of a set of "Hulk" pajamas, a screened rubber image of The Hulk ripping through the fabric on the front.
"Maybe you're 'The Hash', instead," suggested Jason.
I love how Jabin laughed at both his own joke, and the one that Jason made, for at least sixty seconds straight.
I may have gotten a giggle or two of my own out of it, too... :-)
Happy New Week, friends!
"Morning notes: Noah says he didn't water the cats at all. And Jabin says he will not kiss a girl until they get married."
Is that like when Jabin was two and promised to always stay that sweet?
He's done okay on the first promise, but I'll believe the second one when it actually happens. :-)
Not long after the boys started school this past fall, Jude and Noah earned three weeks of grounding from any sort of "screen time"--Netflix, iPod, video games, even computer research were all "off-limits", weekends included. Needless to say, with his older brothers looking to actually play, Jabin didn't have much screen time, either, not really seeing the need.
When their time was finally up (it was actually finished when they had memorized I Corinthians 13--the "Love Chapter"--and could recite it to me three days in a row, as the grounding was instigated by an altercation the two of them had on the playground at school), Jason and I had realized that NOT having them think of nothing but screen time every weekday evening had made our school nights go so much more smoothly that we introduced a new rule: no screen time from Monday night to Thursday night.
I have not ever regretted that decision. Most nights, the boys don't have time to do anything besides eat supper and do their homework and chores before it is time to hit the hay, anyway. On those rare occasions when there is actually time for something else, they tend to read (yay!) or get creative with things to do--sometimes they get artistic, or play board games, or just simply play with each other, either inside or outside. That isexactly what we were hoping for when we implemented the "no week-night screen time" rule.
A couple of weeks ago, while Jason was away for the week doing work-related training in Edmonton, the boys "discovered" the scrapbooks. Now, these scrapbooks are always accessible, and the boys always knew where they were, but they haven't looked through them in years, if ever.
But Jude had just taken an old photo of his cat, Tigger, out of a frame to replace it with a new one of himself and the cat together, and asked me, "What should I do with this picture of Tigger, Mom?"
"You could scrapbook it," I replied. Jude has his own scrapbook that he started a few years ago, although he rarely adds to it, and it only has a few pages in it so far. This particular Tuesday evening, though, he thought that was a great idea.
Jude hauling out his scrapbooking stuff to make a page inspired the other boys to haul out scrapbooks to peruse old photos of themselves, going all the way back to babyhood and before. The years 2000-2007 are extremely well-represented in my scrapbook gallery, as my "peak scrapbooking years" were between 2002-2009. Some of the years have every photo I took that I thought worth including on a scrapbook page included--"finished scrapbooks." (Those are rare.) Several of the years past this "peak time" have a fairly good number of pages scrapbooked, but they are all digitally done and have yet to be printed and put on the shelf.
Watching the boys flip eagerly through these books, asking questions about the pictures and reading every little note I included about them (and yes, sometimes even admiring my artwork) made me realize--that was why I spent all that time, money, and effort in creating these memory albums. (Well, besides the required "sanity time" I needed when my boys were all so little.) And it also made me wish that I was doing more scrapbooking now.
But then I remind myself that I have other priorities right now--I sew more clothes for the kids and myself these days, and when I was "a scrapbooker", I rarely sewed anything that wasn't layers of paper. I also design knitting patterns now, which I didn't do then. I have started pursuing my interest in creative writing (both for songwriting and writing fiction) more, and am taking some courses to increase my skill. And my saddle pad business usually has several orders a day, now, while back then, I was just getting started and was lucky to get that in a week.
So, I blog. I try to remember to take photos of everyday things, not just special ones. And I tell the story of those photos here--so that someday, when my interests and passions cycle again (as I know they will), I will still remember at least some of the stories that made those moments special. And that means my kids will, too.
But sometimes, I still miss going to bed with ink on my fingers.
From the archives: A digital title page for my 2009 "picture-a-day" album, which I have only completed to about March. I don't think I quite managed a photo a day for the whole year, either. C'est la vie.
On Monday, after the boys got home from school, Jabin spent about half an hour at the white board, jotting down his favourite "Life Lessons". No, I don't know why. Yes, I think it's awesome.
I'm pretty sure if he internalizes those, and applies them for the rest of his life, he'll be just fine. :-)
Levi has been going through the phase where wearing grown-ups shoes is the coolest .
Last Saturday, I had to go looking for my boots when I was getting dressed, because he had walked with them all the way down to the living room while I was still in "waking up" mode.
On this particular day, he was already wearing his own little Robeez slippers. But apparently, that wasn't quite enough. He must also wear his big brother's slippers.
But really, how can you pass up the chance to wear Spiderman slippers? Especially when the eyes light up?!
(As you can see by the second photo, his bellybutton is also the coolest right now. :-D)
(And when those eye teeth finally come in, he'll have a full grin at last!)
Do you wanna see a trick I can do?
I can climb onto my truck all by myself...
And "seat up" is just the way I roll!
One day, I noticed that Levi had lined up all his cars in a row. Because it is important to know when it is your turn.
Unless you're a dragon, because, well... dragon! Then, it's always your turn! :-)