Sunday, August 28, 2011

Why we are the best parents around.

I know I already have earned "meanest mom."  A couple weeks ago Spencer and I earned "Parents of the Year" hands down.  We accomplished this feat by allowing our 4-year-old son to ride on a friend's zipline, without his foot in the rope for added security and without a helmet.  Why would we do such a stupid thing?  Well, Madeleine and our friends' kids were all riding it this way like a bunch of old pros and we obviously didn't think through the situation very well.  So, here's what happened:

He climbed the ladder up to the start of the line (which truthfully was a red flag in and of itself) and started his ride down the zipline.  Spencer and I and the dad of the other family were all standing there watching and cheering him on.  Then he hit the end and the momentum he gathered along the way sent him flying.  His feet went up in the air and his back hit a tree about 10 feet away, then he went down and hit his head on the ground/brush at the foot of the tree.  Thankfully, he sprang right up, but he had cut his head pretty good and the blood was gushing.  Needless to say we were freaked out.  Considering how awful the whole thing looked and how bad it could have been, we are really lucky.  We didn't feel lucky to sit for 5.5 hours in the ER, but it's a blessing that we have access at all the necessary medical care, right?  Anyway, that gave us plenty of time to think of all the things we could/should have done differently so we could have saved our boy the pain he had to endure.  He ended up with 4 blue stitches.  They came out last week and the doctor let him keep them.  He's hoping to bring them to school for show-and-tell soon. 

I have pictures of the wound pre-stitches, but I thought it would be a little too gruesome for some.  Honestly I don't even like to see it.

His glasses went flying too went it happend and they seemed to have vanished into thin air.  I looked around for a few minutes before we went to the ER and then throughout the week our friends continued to look for them, all to no avail.  We couldn't imagine where they could have gone, but they definitely weren't in the yard by the zipline.  Until Saturday of that week (this happened on Monday) when they finally appeared in the grass.  Very strange.  Good thing he had his old, taped up pair to wear in the meantime.

Without a doubt, Parents of the Year, right?

Saturday, August 27, 2011

One New Outfit

Madeleine had a pretty great first week of school (mostly).  She was really well behaved the first couple days so I let her have access to one new outfit.  Her excitement at the prospect of showing up to school in this ensemble got the best of her and made it difficult for her to sleep the night before.  So, although she felt like a million bucks thanks to these clothes, her behavior took a bit of a backslide.  Spencer and I thought rather than give her everything back at once, she could earn one outfit each day.  Hopefully that way she would keep trying her best to be nice.  Obvioulsy we think that's a pretty ingenius idea, but she feels robbed because she thought she could be good for 2 days and get everything now.  I can understand her frustration, but I do think she is beginning to see it our way.  Since I also took away all of her dress-up clothes I am thinking that I will let her earn one real outfit and one dress-up too.  Any ideas?  I welcome any and all advice on how you would deal with your own strong-willed child.   

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Favorite Child

I know I can't really have a favorite child, and for the most part I don't, but I sure love having one that doesn't talk back and pick fights with anyone else.  Are you sensing a theme in my recent posts?  Can you tell there's been a bit of dischord around here?  Sheesh!  Anyway, Alayna is about as sweet as they come.  And she is really funny.  She's at that stage of babbling really intently but of course none of it comes out as real words.  Also, there is no mistaking it when she is trying to communicate that she wants something.  She stares it down and does a sort of growl/grunt.  I'm thinking she might be ready to try and come up with another way to get that point across since the current method seems to hurt her throat a little and make her cough.  Another of her talents is shaking her to say "no."  She pretty much always means "no" when she does it, too.  If I ask her if she wants her milk and then ignore her head shake and give it to her anyway, she promptly throws her cup to the floor. 
This picture makes her look like she is moving at light speed, doesn't it?  Madeleine picked out her outfit this day, cute baby skinny jeans and a tunic.  Very fashionable.  You can kind of see how darling Alayna's hair is getting to be.  The back and sides are filling in finally and she's got a little curl going on.  And she's so blonde!  Her hair likes to fall straight into her eyes and she won't keep bows in her hair so lately we have resorted to the one ponytail on top.  She really works that look.

Here again in her favorite place.  Notice the final touch on her fashionable outfit--the shoes.  What 13-month-old doesn't need a pair of pink platform sandals?
One last bit.  She's pretty excited about learning to eat using utensils instead of her fingers or having someone else feed her.  On several occasions she has turned her nose up at something I try to feed her on a fork or spoon, but if I let her hold it herself she'll gobble it right up.  She's a cute girl and we can't get enough of her!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Meanest mom EVER!

According to Madeleine, that's me.  That little girl has been giving us a heck of time lately and our efforts to crack down and help her to shape up have earned me this new title.  I don't think it's true, but perhaps it is. 

As I have previously indicated, Madeleine is really into dressing up/dressing fancy/looking cute, etc. This is the thought that came to me as I was trying to figure out what I could take away in an attempt to motivate her to be a kinder, sweeter, more obedient child. So a couple weeks ago I cleared out her closet of all items that were not totally plain and told her she had to earn them back by changing her behavior. She also would not be allowed to have her new school clothes if she didn't earn her other clothes back. I hoped she would quickly turn things around, but I guess we have given her reason to believe that more and bigger fits equal getting what she wants. Well, we are determined to not give in to that anymore (I thought we already weren't giving in). And so we in the midst of an epic battle of the wills. 

She had to start second grade in old clothes.  I did let her carry her new book bag and her new lunchbox.  Maybe I shouldn't have, I'm not sure.  
And I let her decide on her hairstyle.  I don't think the "meanest mom ever" would do that!  I am happy to report that she actually had a fabulous day!  Especially compared to how our days have been going around here, it was like a 9 out of 10!  Can you sense my happiness and relief?!  If she can keep this new attitude up for a couple more days I'll have to have another "first" day of school post for her so we can showcase one of her new outfits.  She's been really excited about it.  Wish us luck!  I might get that title revoked soon enough. :)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Quote of the Year

Background: Ian is a fabulous kid who doesn't complain about much, but he regularly gives us grief about going to church on Sunday.  We've told him that in our family it's non-negotiable and we will do it every week no matter what, but still he complains.  The other thing that must be pointed out is that he is fascinated with the computer.  This took place one Sunday on our way to church.  Are you ready for it?

Ian: "Mom, why do we have to go to church?"

Me: "Because we need to go and learn more about Jesus."

Ian: "Can't we just do that on the computer?"

Me: "Where do you think we would go on the computer to do that?"

Ian: "I don't know...maybe"

Did you check the link?  After this conversation we had to check and we were pleasantly surprised to see that it took us to  Pretty cool, in my opinion.  And I know that it's only August and a better quote could come along, but this one is staying strong for now and I just had to share.

P.S. I cannot wait for Madeleine to start school tomorrow!