Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Book Review: Thank You, God, for Mommy

I did not pay attention when I requested the book, Thank You, God, for Mommy. I did not notice that it was a board book. I was disappointed when it came in the mail and I discovered it was a board book. This is my fault for not noticing. This is my only complaint about the book.

Thank You, God, for Mommy, is a cute rhyming board book about a Mommy panda bear and her baby bear, who is thanking God for his or her Mommy. It goes through different things that children experience such as being sad, making messes, getting hurt, being scared, praying, and going to sleep. This book helps kids remember that their Mommy loves them no matter what, whether they do good or not so good. It is an easy read. My first grader read it without any problems. I would recommend this book for younger children, to reassure them that they are loved, by God and their Mommy.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Ready for the Zoo

I have learned to pick my battles, especially when it comes to my kids getting dressed. This was something I had to learn to let go of a few years ago with Piper. There are still the times when I will put my foot down and tell her that she cannot wear whatever she is choosing to wear at the time, but it comes more and more seldom now. 

I think the hard part for me is that I don't want someone to think that I am the one who dressed my child like that, when in fact, it was my child that dressed themselves like that. At least half of my children are old enough now, though, that I think others will lean more towards the thought that it was the child that dressed him or herself and not me. 

There was one morning while taking Piper and Finn to school, that I decided what Seven was choosing to wear was not worth the battle. And life went on.

The other day, we were going to take advantage of the warmer weather AND it being Spring Break, I decided to take my children to the zoo. We hadn't been in awhile. So, what better time to go then now? 

As we were getting ready for the zoo, Seven found his Safari hat and decided it would complete his outfit for the zoo. Sorry if it is kind of hard to hear.
Being the cool mom that I am, I just went with it.  I figured what was the harm in letting my 3 year old wear his Safari hat to the zoo? Could you think of a better place? Well, I guess an actual Safari Adventure would be a better place, but we don't have any of those in Abilene, that I am aware of. What harm was it causing, if Seven wore his Safari hat to the zoo? None. In fact, it probably made his day, because he was really excited about it. Did people stare at him at the zoo? I don't know. Did I care? No. He was so cute and excited that he was wearing his Safari hat. Why should I deprive him of this excitement?

The next time you are about to leave the house and your kid is dressed in a way that doesn't match, or they are wearing an outfit that isn't your favorite. Ask yourself...does it really matter? Let your child feel proud today that they dressed themselves!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

My Baby is Growing Up

Rilian has three loves in this world...balls, stuffed animal cats, and baby dolls. I had to clarify that the cats he loves are the stuffed animal ones. He isn't too sure about real cats. He found this hideous baby doll at Granny's house and fell in love with it. He carried it around wrapped up in a blanket and it eventually came home with him. He even sleeps with it almost every night.
He started out sleeping with one of Piper's stuffed animal cats. Then he found another one of Piper's stuffed animals cats and had to sleep with it as well. Santa decided he needed one of his own, so then Rilian decided he would sleep with three stuffed animal cats. Then he discovered a love for baby dolls. To make a long story short, he kept adding baby dolls to his collection of sleeping pals. So, most nights he has several baby dolls and stuffed cats in his bed with him. Here he is with some of them lined up on the floor.
When he goes to sleep, you have to make sure you get the cats on one side of him and the baby dolls on the other side of him. And he knows if one is missing. He will let you know and won't go to sleep very willingly without you going to get it. I went to check on him one night before I went to bed and I saw this, so I had to take a picture...he had his arm around one of his baby dolls.
About a week or so ago, we discovered Rilian knew how to climb into his crib. And then we discovered he knew how to climb out of his crib. So, we took the side rail off so he wouldn't get hurt trying to climb out. This is what we found the first night that we took off his side rail when we went to check on him before going to bed.
So, we carefully picked him up and put him back in his bed. Yes, those are pillows on the floor. With Piper, our first child, otherwise known as the guinea pig child, she wasn't too happy when she fell out of bed the first night of not having a side rail on her bed. When we heard the cries of our 18 month old Piper who had fallen out of bed, we decided we should have put pillows down to soften her fall. Yes, she was 18 months when she learned how to climb out. She is our climber. If you haven't seen the infamous "Climbing Piper" video, you need to watch it. If you have seen it, I'm sure you would love to watch her amazing climbing abilities again. She learned how to climb into her crib first...and we thought it was cute.
Then a couple of days later, she learned how to climb out. And both our worlds were changed.

The second night that Rilian was in his "new big boy bed", was a success! When I went to check on him before going to bed, this is what I found.
He was still in his bed! Yea Rilian! I will be honest and say that he still falls out occasionally. But he puts himself back into bed. Sometimes I think he is too tired to make it all the way back in bed. The other night, he was halfway in and halfway out and asleep. It looked like he had fallen asleep on his way back into his bed. Sorry, I didn't think to take a picture of it. It was pretty funny.

My two year old Rilian is on his way to becoming a big boy. He already thinks he is as big as his older sister and brothers. He wants to do everything they do. If he can't quite do it, he sure does try. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Fun at the Doctor's Office

Seems like I have been blogging alot about Piper lately. I guess it's her turn to be in the spotlight. I'm gonna blog and blog about her until you are tired of reading about her. Well, we both know that would pretty much be impossible, because who in their right mind would get tired of reading about Piper? We will get to my other three angels later. I try to keep my posts in order of what happens in our lives, so here is more of Piper...

Piper had an ear infection last month, but a couple weeks after her medication was gone, she continued to complain about her ear hurting. So, I took her back to the doctor. What did she do while we were in the exam room waiting for her doctor to come see her? Watch for yourself and see...
She didn't know that I was recording her at first. She got some pretty good momentum going there in the middle of the video! As you can tell, life is never dull with Piper! Or with any of my other children for that matter. 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

There's Justin Bieber

I was standing in the check-out line the other day, when Piper points to this picture on the front of a magazine and says, "There's Justin Bieber."
That is Nancy Reagan, if you didn't know. I looked at Piper and said, "Do you know who Justin Bieber is?" She replied, "Kids at school talk about him." Apparently, she doesn't know who Justin Bieber is. Piper is 6 years old. I am GLAD that she doesn't know who Justin Bieber is. I'm not gonna lie...I am not a fan of his music. To me, and alot of others, he sounds like a girl when he sings. The first time I heard one of his songs on the radio, I honestly thought it was a girl singing, until the D.J. announced that it was Justin Bieber. I thought to myself, "Wow! People really are right when they say he sounds like a girl!" 

In case you have been living in a cave on a deserted island without any communication from the main land for awhile and have no clue who Justin Bieber is, I will do you a favor and post a picture of him. Is it wrong of me to say that there is a slight resemblance between Nancy Reagan and Justin Bieber?
Wow! I can't believe I allowed myself to do that! Anyway, from what I hear, he is a good kid. I'm sure there will come the day, oh too soon, when my children will be fans of music artists that I am not a fan of. 

Do you and your kids differ on musical taste?

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Have you had "The Talk" with your kids?

I, myself, nor my husband have had "The Talk" with our children yet. Our kids are 6, 5, 3, and 2. They are still young, but ever so curious. I have not sat down and thought how it will go. I have not sat down and planned what I will say. I have heard some advice, but have not developed a plan of my own yet. Perhaps, after watching this video, I should start thinking about developing a plan...
I can only imagine how it will go with my kids. I imagine it will go a bit like that video, if I don't have a plan! 

I don't know if Julia Sweeney really had this conversation with her daughter, or if she is merely being a comedian and doing her act. Regardless, it is funny. Although, I did notice that she never once said that "when you get married"... I do know that I plan to throw that curve ball into "The Talk." I just hope and pray that when we have "The Talk", I will convey to my kids that they can come to me about anything. I want to be the kind of mom that my kids will "talk" to and not be afraid to come to with their problems or fears. 

I am sure the day will come sooner than I am ready. I don't know that any parent is really ready to have "The Talk" with their kids. Parents, please help your kids to feel comfortable to come to you with their questions and concerns. Don't stray away from the subject. You would rather your kids get the correct information and from you than whatever information they may gather from their friends and peers. Don't let this fact of life close the door an open relationship with your kids.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Fashionista Piper

Oh Piper, what a sense of fashion she has at times! I have had to learn that it is not always a battle worth fighting. I have gone through my pictures and put a few on this post only to show you at the end what a cute job she can do at times, as well.

I am not sure what look she was going for here, but her outfit consists of tights on her head, otherwise known as her long hair, if you ask her. And she has on an undershirt tank top and her brother's blue and red pajama pants.
There are some outfits that she just doesn't get to leave the house in. If she chooses to dress in one of these outfits, I usually tell her, "It is ok for now, but if we go somewhere, you'll have to change." This was one of them. If you can't tell, her skirt had small pink and white dots on it. Under the skirt, she had on tan capri pants.
I call this picture "Goggle Girls". Piper and her cousin, Mabrie, decided to wear goggles.
Piper kept on her purple ballet outfit, with a shirt that she had worn with some pants earlier (that did go together, without the purple ballet outfit). She added some long pink hair to accentuate the "outfit".
Every night before we put the kids to bed, we read the Bible with them. Piper came dressed like this! In case you're wondering, that is her shirt pulled up onto her head.
Before Jeremy and I head off to bed ourselves, we check on the kids. We walked into Piper's room one night and found this on the floor. I am not sure if she was putting this outfit together for herself, or if the Care Bear was supposed to be wearing it.
Last month, I blogged about this "outfit". You can read about it here.
Then there are times when Piper can dress nice and cute. Maybe she doesn't have the same sense of style as you or me, but it isn't a bad's Piper! When I shop for her, my brain has to try to think like her. Here are a pair of shoes I found that I knew she would love. And I was right...she does love them!
A week or so ago, Old Navy was having a sale on their flip flops. They were 2 for $5. Piper has the same love for flip flops that I do, so I took her shopping for some. I let her pick out 2 pairs. There were alot of different kinds. After looking at all of them and thinking about it, she picked out this pair.
And this pair. They are cute. 
And of course, Old Navy HAD to put their swimsuits right next to their flip flops. Of course, Piper saw them. She found one she liked, so we had to try it on. Of course, it fit her. I made her really happy when I told her that I would go ahead and buy it. 
After having this short shopping trip with Piper, I am excited to go shopping with her in the future. It will be fun and interesting to see what kind of clothes she likes as she is growing up and gets to decide on her wardrobe. She will be seven years old soon. That is still young, but getting oh so close to being not so young. My little girl is growing up!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Little Artists

My little artists have been busy at work lately. I thought I would share some of their creative artwork with you, since I know how much you want to see it...

Piper drew a Vampire Butterfly. I am not sure where she got the idea. She saw what Finn was drawing and her butterfly magically transformed into a vampire butterfly.
Finn is so creative with his artwork. I love hearing him explain what he drew. He goes into so much detail. This one is a monster. It has alot of eyes. There are two different color eyes. You can see the green ones. And those red dots are eyes, also. Do you know why they are red? Finn says they shoot out fire. What an imagination!
This is Seven's artwork. It is a blue monster. Do you notice at the top of the page that he wrote his name?
Here is a close up. Seven will be four years old in April. He hasn't been to school yet. He will start preschool in August. I haven't really worked with him on letters or anything school wise. I am amazed at how much he knows! It is scary how smart he is! After he finished his artwork, he asked me to remind him of the letters of his name so he could write his name on it. I said each letter as he wrote it.
I am not sure how he knew how to write the letters. He is incredibly smart! I haven't taught him. I am not lying, I am telling you the honest truth. I guess he has learned from Piper and Finn. And he likes to play on Starfall alot. That boy is a sponge!

Friday, March 11, 2011

No Shame!

One day upon arriving home from the gym and making sure all four of my kids got out of the van, I hear Piper fuss, "SEVEN!" I was still trying to get Rilian out of the van when I looked to see what she was fussing at Seven for. You WILL NOT BELIEVE what was going on...Well, maybe you will. I'm sure some of you have boys and have had a similar experience. After all, boys will be boys! Seven was standing in the front yard, with his pants down, taking a leak. That's right...Seven was peeing in the front yard. Guess what else I happened to realize? A car was driving by at the same time! At least, if they looked, they just saw his naked bum. Luckily, he was facing the house, but standing in the middle of the front yard! If any of you follow me on Twitter or are friends with me on Facebook, you probably saw my tweet or status update...
"I apologize to the red camry driving by our house when we got home.
 Apparently @ couldn't wait til we got inside to go pee!"

I don't want to duplicate myself, but I know some of you who read my blog aren't on Twitter and/or Facebook for some reason or another, and I wanted to share this funny story with my blog readers, too. Plus, I can go into more detail on my blog than on Twitter or Facebook. We had a similar incident with Finn when he was younger. You can read about it here.

When I started out with the thought of this post, I was only going to include the above story, but I was looking though my pictures and videos and found some more that would be fitting. So, here we go...

For Piper's 4th Birthday, she got a bike. Here is a picture. And that is Seven "eyeing" her bike. He was 13 months old in this picture. It is a very nice purple Disney Princess bike. 
Fast forward two Seven is 3 years old and about the right size for a bike. What bike do we own that is the right size? You guessed it...the above purple Disney Princess bike. Seven has no shame! It is just a bike to him. Who cares what color it is? Piper and Finn have their bikes, which are a little bigger than the purple Disney Princess bike, and Seven wanted a bike to ride, too, so he chose to ride the purple Disney Princess bike. The first few times that I took them for bike rides, Finn on his Cars bike, Piper on her pink Barbie bike, and Seven on "his" purple Disney Princess bike, I have to admit I felt a little weird. Did Seven? Absolutely not! He was so proud that he had a bike to ride. He even called it "his" bike. He took several bike rides on this purple Disney Princess bike. I don't know why I didn't think of it sooner, but I realized that Granny had a "boy" bike at her house, just the right size for Seven. It doesn't get as much riding as the purple Disney Princess bike got. It really just sits there alot of the time. Unless the kids are at Granny's, it doesn't get ridden. So, the other day, I had the bright idea that we would go to Granny's house and do a little bike exchange. Seven was pretty excited. Granny lives about a mile away. So, he got on the purple Disney Princess bike and I pushed Rilian in the stroller and we headed to Granny's house. When we did the exchange, Seven was happy. He said, "Now I get to ride a boy bike." He knew the other one was a girl bike, but it didn't bother him. Here he is on the way home. I didn't realize that the sun was right behind me when I took the picture, so he had to squint.
As I was mentally writing this post, I was trying to think about what recent pictures I have of Seven so I could put one on this post. Well, as you can see, I have found some. Anyway, I came across this video, that Jeremy recorded, and thought it was quite funny. I was unaware that it existed. But I felt it was very fitting for the "no shame" post. 
It's even funnier that Rilian is doing what Seven is doing. He likes to mock and do what his brothers and sister do. I think Seven was practicing for his role in the next Grudge movie.

Last night, I told Seven to put his underwear on after his bath, so I could put lotion on him. This is what I got...
What a funny shameless kid!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Valentine's Day

For Valentine's Day, the school that Piper and Finn go to, gave parents the opportunity to make a Valentine's Day cookie for their kids. So, that morning after my children were safely in class, I went and made them each a Valentine's Day cookie. Jeremy had already left for work, so it was all up to me and my creativity.

There was alot of things the parents could use to decorate their child's cookies with. There were different kinds of candy hearts, pink, white, and red M&M's, different kinds of icing, different kinds of sprinkles, different kinds of gummy worms, and probably some other stuff that I just can't remember right now. 

I chose to decorate Piper's cookie first. Piper is a girl and a girly girl at that. So, I tried to make her cookie "girly". I put bright pink icing on it and picked out specific conversation hearts and a sweet tart heart because of what they said. Then I put light pink and dark pink M&M's on her cookie. That girl LOVES chocolate!
For Finn, I tried everything to not make his cookie look girly, because he is a boy. I chose light pink icing, because it was less girly in my mind. After I had put it on his cookie, I saw that there was white icing, which would have been a better choice. But he really didn't care. I put gummy worms on his cookie. To me, worms was the least girly thing I could use. Boys like bugs and worms and stuff like that. Then I chose some red and white M&M's for his pink. I did put a purple conversation heart on his cookie, but look what it says...that's why I chose it.
After decorating the cookies, it was time to make a card, wrap the cookies, and deliver them to Piper and Finn's classes. Here is Piper's all ready to be delivered. I did the same thing with her card, as I did with her cookie. Pink writing, girly stickers, and a red pencil with hearts on it.
For Finn's, I wrote in red marker and tried to find more boyish stickers. Then I got him a black pencil. If you've ever tried to do or decorate boyish things on Valentine's Day, you understand how hard it can be.
Piper and Finn were so excited and proud of their cookies!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

What did Piper do during Rilian's Partay?

Piper is a natural born climber. If you haven't seen the infamous "Climbing Piper" video, you MUST watch it before you read any further! Ok, now that you know how well Piper can climb, this  next video will not surprise you at her grace and ability to do what you're about to see without any problem at all. She is so smooth. Nothing really slows her down. Finn tries, but he just isn't as skilled as Piper. That's ok, he has other strengths.
After we ate dinner and cake, we were cleaning up before Rilian opened his presents. I walked into the kitchen and this is what I saw on the fridge...
I didn't have to wonder who did it, I know Piper well enough to know that this was her doing. She is a very interesting little girl. Where does she come up with these ideas?
The big yellow dump truck that Rilian got for his birthday...well, just watch for yourself.
Life is always entertaining and interesting with my four children. They each have their own personalities. You have just witnessed some of Piper's. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Happy Birthday to my Little Puxatony Phil!

Rilian turned 2 years old on February 2, 2011, also known as Ground Hog's day! He is my little Puxatony Phil. However, I did not send him outside and see if he saw his shadow. I'll have to remember to do that next year. I'm sure he would have seen his shadow, though. It was sunny AND we had about 4 inches of snow on the ground!

We could not travel very far on his actual birthday, but he and his siblings were getting cabin fever as they were starting day two of their four snow days in a row. Luckily Granny Joyce lives about a mile away, so we headed over to her house for a change of scenery. She just happened to have a cake (guess Grannies are good for that) and we had a little birthday celebration before his BIG celebration on Saturday. 
He got one candle out...
Then the second one...
Piper, Finn, and Seven were just about as excited as Rilian to see what he got!
This Toy Story book was in the bag. If you want to see how much he enjoyed it, you can click here.
Then on Saturday, we had his "real" birthday party. And with the help of our new camera, you can see Jeremy in action making Rilian's cake. 
Rilian loves cats and baby dolls. Obviously, Rilian is a boy, so we decided to go with a cat cake instead of a baby doll cake. I did not find any cat plates, other than Hello Kitty, so I chose the jungle plates. He also likes giraffes. And a lion IS a cat.
The finished product of the wonderful Jeremy Voss! Meow!
The birthday boy with his cat cake. Look how loving Piper looks right now. She is a good big sister...most of the time :)
It must have been a dream come true for it to finally be Rilian's birthday! Every Sunday, we eat lunch at Jeremy's parent's house. They welcome everyone for lunch. There are many college students who regularly attend. Each Sunday, Dale and Joyce celebrate someone's birthday. With that many students there, it is always someone's birthday. Rilian loves to sing "Happy Birthday" right along with the rest of us. So, for us to FINALLY be singing to him, it must have just made his day! You can see it in his face.
The cat's claws and whiskers were made out of licorice. Apparently, Rilian had never had licorice before...I think he liked it!
It was kind of surprising that Rilian didn't really get messy eating his cupcake. This is pretty much the extent of his messiness. If you want to watch him enjoy his cupcake a little more, you can click here.
Video cameras are good, but you gotta have the still shots too. First bite...yum yum!
Licking the icing off the face...gotta keep it clean now, he's two, ya know.
Present time! Like all birthday parties, all the kids are more than ready to help the birthday boy. Crowd around Rilian now!
Nanny and Papa Bud got Rilian some new rain boots with frogs on them.
This present was from Granny and Dadabe. It was a nice big yellow metal dump truck.
Jeremy and I got Rilian a Little People Animal Sounds Farm. We have a Little People school bus and the people that go with it. He really likes to play with the people. So, we thought he would really like the farm. Plus, he likes animals. He's playing with the horse.
All three boys really liked the farm.
Watch them in action...
Rilian decided to line all the farm animals, the farmer, and some of the school bus people up. He was so proud of what he had done!
And now you can feel as if you were there with the rest of us!