Saturday, May 21, 2011

Slamming Doors and Tony

Slamming Doors

Our morning began with both kids crawling in bed with us. Eventually, they got out of our bed and started playing. This is when doors started slamming. We are officially entering the dueling siblings years of parenthood including arguments, threats of loss of friendship and slamming doors. I think we have about 13-15 more years of this to enjoy before it subsides. After Liam telling Sophie off for not sharing, during which he was actually very cool, calm and collected, the door fireworks began! In the end, Sophie relented, taking the toy Liam wanted ( I might add that there were two of said toy, so she could have easily shared from the beginning) to him and apologizing. As always, there was a motive behind this for her. She wanted something from him! It worked, and I stayed out of it. That's my new goal- let them work these things out for themselves.

Liam still has problems with language, especially with proper use of who and what and sentence structure. It can be very frustrating, as we have been working with him for the last 18 months or so on this and he just doesn't seem to get it. We often get completely non-sensical questions from him. Sometimes you just have to laugh at it and move on. Today, Pete had found a watch beeping in a bag on the couch and was turning if off. Liam came up to Pete and asked, "Who is that?"  Firstly, there was the who/what thing. Secondly, Liam knows perfectly well what a watch is (another frustrating thing- he often asks questions to which he already knows the answers.).  After giving Liam a bewildered look, Pete replied, "Tony. This is Tony, Liam."

Friday, May 20, 2011

Random Pics from 2011

Let There Be Snow- January 2011 Sledding

February Pictures

Valentine's Cookie Making
 A snow day resulted in a pajama party and cookie making. We had a few snow days this winter and it got harder and harder to get creative inside!

This is the beginning of the process- cookie dough is made and ready for cookie cutters.
Finally, cookies to ice! The kids told me how to color the icing. I think Liam wanted more of a red color, but I couldn't get it.
Enjoying the fruits of their labor!

Big Black the Cat- One of our "temporary" outdoor brood of cats. We have two black cats that are "ours" for the time-being. Nicest cats ever- and available for adoption to a good home.

Snow Day Part 2 

Valentine's Day Dinner
Pete is icing the heart-shaped red velvet cakes that are our tradition. I added heart plates for dinner too.


Sophie loves animals, bugs, snakes, toads and basically anything that moves.  We were on day 4 of success of no underpant accidents today when I discovered that indeed she did pee herself today.  Here's how it went:

Sophie is playing in the great climbing tree at the bus stop with Erin, Paul, Kate and Liam.
Me: Sophie, did you have any accidents today?
Sophie: {mumbles something I can't hear}
Me: Was that a yes?
Sophie: No, I didn't.
Me: Yay!! Good job.
{she goes for a high five I was not expecting and basically slaps me}
Me: Ow!
Erin: What happened? {Erin is sitting in the tree in a spot below Sophie. She's in 4th grade.}
I explain what happened.
Erin:  Ummm...It looks like she has a wet spot.
I look up. Yup. She was lying.
Paul: Is that why she has to sit at the front of the bus?
A conversation ensues, where I found that the safety guards (Erin and Paul are safety guards) are afraid of Sophie and think she's mean! She also called a boy, Tony, who told her he loved her last fall, that he was a jackass. Apparently, she told him over and over again. I'll admit she got that word from me. It's one of my favorite phrases, though I try not to use it around the kiddos.

We play for a few minutes then come home and play at home. Sophie and Liam are toad hunting in my vegetable garden, with good success when I discover that Sophie is burying the poor toads alive.What alerts me to this is that she is saying something about "when they die". I don't think she was trying to kill them. I think she was pretend burying them and just didn't get what could happen. It still frustrated me.

I promptly rescued the poor toad struggling under the soil and freed both of the toads she was holding hostage. Liam and I had already hidden his toad so that it could be free without Sophie grabbing it. Sophie is currently suspended from my garden for trying to kill the residents.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Hiatus Is Over

Today, after the kids came home from school, we read a version of The Very Hungry Caterpillar that Sophie created in Kindergarten. It was very cute, and led to Liam asking me about whether I smiled at him when he was born. We have had many conversations about them being adopted, not being in my belly etc, so I was a little thrown by this. I told him that I would have smiled at him when he was born if I had been there, but that I wasn't. I told him that I certainly smiled at him the first time I met him, and proceeded to tell them about the first time Pete and I met them, including them running into the room, screaming with joy. I thought I had video of this on my blog, so we sat down and looked at this blog, and looked at pictures.

As it turns out, there wasn't a video of that moment on the blog, but there were plenty of other videos and memories that we all enjoyed seeing again, or for them, experiencing them again without the benefit of a clear memory of it. They watched videos of themselves speaking Russian, and asked if they were speaking Russian. This was another potential revelation, as I have believed that they actually do remember Russian and are pretending not to remember it. Maybe I'm wrong? They acted pretty amazed to see themselves speaking a different language.

Regardless, it made me realize that I should really keep up with this, not so much for others, but for us. I stopped posting because I just got too busy, but it's definitely worth the time. Expect lots of posting- I'm going to schedule a time each week to post updates, or possibly more often.

Coming Soon: 21 months captured in pictures!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Educational Websites

For all the moms out there that have kids toddler to preschool age, I am going to list some of the sites I have found or been referred over the past couple weeks. I am currently teaching the kids how to use a computer-basically using a mouse and using a keyboard. I searched high and low, and the best thing I have found is They are on Lesson 2 now and its pretty comprehensive, starting with roll-over mouse games.

I like for ABCs. I have started to let them click through it, but I'm trying to concentrate on 4 letters right now, not all of the alphabet. Another website is pretty good, and it has numerous links to other sites for various learning games: This site is how I found the Boowa and Kwala site.

A few others:,game_toddler,game_preschool&site=us


Liam had an MRI last Thursday. Unfortunately, the neurologist did not properly educate me about the sedation and it was a bit of nightmare. I took Sophie along, and that was a mistake. If your child has to have a procedure involving sedation, do not bring any other children with you. Second mistake- going alone. Liam fought the sedative and had to be given more. In the end, a nurse was holding his legs down and I held down his upper body and tried to soothe him as he fought until he gave out and fell asleep. Not all children fight sedation, but it is also not uncommon.

The MRI itself went just fine. He came out of it and the nurse immediately started trying to wake him up. I had been given paperwork that indicated it could take up to 4 hours for him to wake up, so I anticipated that they would let him emerge from the sedation naturally, but apparently not. The same paperwork indicated that he could be "irritable". That was an understatement.

On the journey home, Liam fell asleep in the car. Immediately, of course, he woke up when I carried him inside at home. Keep in mind, the sedation has made him totally "drunk" and he can't walk for his life! So, Sophie was being difficult and not helpful and ended up locked outside our deck while I carried Liam inside and arranged him "safely" on the couch. I went out to fetch a crying sophie and was gone for about 2 minutes, but Liam still managed to fall on the floor (missing the pillows I had arranged for this situation) and hit his head. Fantastic! It only got better from here.

As I tried to get Liam to stay on the couch, as he would invariable injure himself otherwise, he fought me harder and harder. It started with scratching me, then biting and smacking me. Then he started hitting me. He was then counting, "one two three" and throwing himself on me. I was fully under attack, and he had adrenaline running through him giving him strength. Eventually I got Pete home and we were able to get things under control.

My advice: if you have to take your child in for a procedure involving sedation, anticipate the worst. DO NOT bring your other young children and have your spouse take the day off. You will most definitely need the help.

Finally, I got the results today and Liam's MRI came back normal. That's excellent news!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Conversation at the Dinner Table Tonight

Context- I was trying to persuade the kids to eat their delicious dinner, made by me natch, by talking about growing up to be big and strong like Thomas the Tank Engine (for Liam) and a princess (for Sophie).

Sophie: I want to grow big to grow cows.
Me: You want to grow cows at your princess castle?
Sophie: yeah.
Me: Will you be wearing a princess dress while you are growing cows at your princess castle?
Sophie: Yeah (as in yeah, what a stupid question).
Liam: I want to grow train tracks.

P.S. will postpics soon. I am newly mobiliy connected, and inventing words as I type.