Tuesday, December 28, 2010

All Things December . . . .

Davis has been particularly aware of books talking about seasons and made the correlation to the unfortunate LACK of "typical" season type events in AZ. aka "Why don't we have piles of orange leaves?" "When will we have snow here?". Anyway - he was excited to see some slightly brownish leaves on one of my mother-in-law's trees. She let them shakes the leaves off the tree and rake them up into a small pile. They then threw them over their heads and lived out their "fall" dreams!! haha

So Davis wants absolutely nothing to do with the Santa tradition. He couldn't rationalize Santa even last year and asked flat out if he was real or not and wanted a full explanation of how that was possible. We decided not to fib to our kids about Santa if it came up and for Davis it came up early. The logic just wasn't there for him. Parker, however, still thinks it is fun. He wanted to go see Santa at the mall. After a very direct conversation with Davis about absolutely NOT mentioning anything about Santa wearing a costume while in line, I hauled the kids to see mall Santa. Davis was refusing to even go through the line - looking at me like it was insulting his intelligence to pretend. Once Parker got up there and Davis realized Parker was getting a photo, he decided he wanted to be in the picture too. Santa says to Davis, "So what do you want for Christmas?" Davis gives Santa an exaggerated wink (yes . . wink!!) and says, "How about I just tell my mom." - as if to make it clear that Santa was pulling anything over on him. Ahhhh, Davis. Classic.
Finally zoo lights with our neighbors. Davis took the picture of the lion - it was his favorite. My kids love Christmas lights and really, really loved them this year. Grayson would gasp like he had never seen a light before every time he saw a new lit house.
We also took the kids to walk a fun street in Mesa. They had a house on the street that opened up their backyard to a beautiful "walk through Bethlehem". They really did an amazing job. Each of the major events of the birth of Christ is portrayed with pictures, displays and scriptures all the way through to the death and resurrection of Christ as the reason why he was born. My boys all really liked it. Parker LOVED the sheep and shepherds. In a big grass area the guy had a fake camp fire surrounded by probably 100 little wooden sheep and it really did look like a flock out at night. Parker loves that part of the story and jumps in when the angel appears to add that the angel told the shepherds to "not be afraid". Davis asked later, "Do you think those people did that so that people who don't know Jesus would know about him?". I said, "well yes, I think that that is what they are hoping." He says, "Well how come we just lights on our house then? Don't you think we should get some big signs that say 'You need to read the Bible because you need to know about Jesus'." Yep - good thought D :) I love that is so simple and obvious to them.

sorry mom

it is super late and my computer battery is dying - I made an honest attempt to get all the way through Christmas - but I didn't make it. You should have enough there to read until I get it posted tomorrow. Christmas pictures are coming - I promise. I noticed that you have to click "view older posts" to go back to where I started tonight - how about all that blogging!!!!

Davis' on Thanksgiving

I don't know if you will be able to see this well without clicking on the picture to make it larger, but I love this. Davis had to write this for school and he did most of it himself with a little help. These people are important to me:
1. Mom because you make dinner.
2. Dad because you play with us and the Wii.
3. My brothers and my cousins. (He was upset that there was only one more line and he wanted to list the brothers and cousins - I convinced him it was okay to put them all on one line - love the brother/cousin love)
What are you most thankful for this Thanksgiving?
When I think about Thanksgiving I think of: "sweet rice".
My best memory is: "going to Gram's house".
The classic turkey hand!
Davis writes this several times every day. He loves to color and to write and often writes the names of our family on his papers. He always wants everybody to be listed!
So this page I copied because it shows several things that I like about how he writes right now. 1. He dots his eye with a little "circle" instead of a dot - jr. high-notes-to-friends style:) Every time he writes his name, the "i" has a little circle.
2. He learned punctuation marks and love to draw question marks and exclamation points. When he writes exclamation points he thinks there needs to be several. Don't know where he gets that love for dramatic expression!!!! haha (note the exclamation points also have the circles instead of dots)

Happy Birthday Eli!

A belated Happy Birthday to my nephew Eli. I can't believe he is SEVEN! Crazy! We saw a movie and then lunch at the park with cousins and friends. It was very fun for all the kiddos. Eli is considerate, helpful, smart, a good leader and great friend to my boys. Each one of my boys looks up to him and asks to be with him often. I am so grateful for him. It seems like yesterday that I was spending as many work lunch hours as possible at my sister's Hermosa house to get my hands on my new nephew. It goes by so fast. One thing Eli does right now that I love is whenever ANYONE says "Hi how are you?" (even if it just a standard expression of a stranger and not necessarily an honest inquiry) He looks right at the person and responds, "I'm great and how are you?" I've heard him do it many times and it always sounds so grown up to me. My boys pretty much duck into a shell when someone talks to them so that contrast probably makes E's response stand out to me even more :)


Okay so technically not his first haircut, but I either didn't take pictures of the first, or can't find them :( so this is probably more like the third official hair cut - but he looks super cute anyway. When he is older (assuming he cares, which he won't because he is a boy) I'll just tell him that this is his first hair cut :)

Field Trips

On the first parent directed HBL day (basically a field trip on a homeschool day) I had a really hard time coming up with a creative activity as my two great ideas weren't an option on a Monday. So I decided at the last minute to join a bunch of other moms from Davis' school. (Minus my sister/Janet/Jenna comfort zone of going to a group function - just me and the boys, btw:) They took a group picture which cute. This is literally close to 90% of Davis' school I think. He is at the bottom right.
Parker at the zoo - just cuz he is so cute :)
They also went on a field trip to Schnepf Farms. This was just their Kindergarten class. Davis' absolute favorite thing about this trip was the baby goats. For whatever reason he LOVED them. He hung out by their cages even after the other kids had moved along. They also had this overhead track-like thing built for the goats to encourage them to climb and exercise. It wove around the animal cages up above our heads and he thought that the course was pretty cool. He was really looking forward to picking a vegetable also but because AZ had crazy warm weather this December, the only veggies they had ready to pick were turnips . . . this made him much less interested!
This is a great buddy from his class, David. And below is a class picture with teacher Mrs. Shelberg.

Car Rides

You would think that riding in the car would be pretty horrific with the boys so tight, three-in-a-row but they do great most of the time. (MOST meaning that there are occasions that I want to swerve into a median if they don't stop bugging on each other) but much of the time riding in the car is a soothing part of the day because they are contained, calm and happy to be with each other. It is VERY common to look back and see them holding hands - especially Parker and Gray. Warms my heart every time.

Grayson is the entertainer in the car for sure - trying to be silly to get a laugh out of either brother. I have noticed he is especially theatrical when we get in the car after picking up Davis from school. I think he is super excited to see D and excited to get his attention. I know that this will undoubtedly invite my sister's comments on how liberal I am about car seats, but another "car" happening right now is that Grayson wants to ride in a booster. Obviously he begs for this because sometimes I let him - bad I know! But almost every single time we are walking to the car he starts begging to sit in "Parker's seat" and this can definitely lead to some conflict when he realizes that he still needs to sit in the 2-yr-old appropriate 5 point harness :)
Ah, yes. Sleeping in the car. This is Davis' m.o. and it has been this way his entire life. Davis' eyes begin to roll back in his head when the car is still in the driveway. For Parker it is more rare. He has to be very, very tired. When they are all passed out in the car it cracks me up for some reason. Who could keep there eyes closed with heads bobbing and thrashing all over the place? My kids, I guess.

And Grayson - he truly has to be very tired to sleep in the car. It is so funny to me when I look in the back seat at nap time and the two non-nappers are drooling away and Grayson is smiling like the king of the castle. Sometimes in the car he sits like this with his arms crossed and this really makes me laugh. Not sure what he is thinking . . .


Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. It is basically Christmas-type celebration without the distraction of shopping, gifts, and other related chaos. I guess that might be slightly exaggerated because I am still currently recovering from Christmas hectic-ness. We were able to split and do Thanksgiving lunch with my Nothum fam and then pack in a second meal with the Boyd family at Buzz and Billie's house. There really is nothing I don't like about this meal - might be my all time favorite - but I love the 'tradition' of the meal and the time we get to spend with family. I love that my kids remember it now and anticipate those traditions. All time fave for the kids this year was sweet rice. I think they asked all week "How many more days until we get to eat sweet rice for Thanksgiving?" :) love it! Davis also like the sweet potatoes and Turkey but nothing beats the rice. One of the best parts of the tradition for me is helping my Gram prepare the food and get the turkeys in the oven early (4:30 am) on T-day morning. I've been doing this with her for almost ten years and I love that morning. She always gives the same instructions and makes me look up cooking times in her old, old, old cook book instead of trusting the published times in the paper (adjusted, I'm sure, for current ovens and cookware). Since there is always several HOURS difference - I write out the check times based on the newspaper and she thinks it comes from the cookbook :) I know that Thanksgiving won't always be at her house - but I have spend every one of my thirty Thanksgivings at that house and it wouldn't be the same anywhere else.


Sadly, my continual chase after three boys has left my blog quite rejected. I'm writing about Halloween just after Christmas which means that the cute, sentimental comments are going to be few and far between, but at least my photos will be up to date! Halloween events were pretty typical this year. We had a pre-Halloween party at my mom's house to carve pumpkins. The cousin all dress up together and the big boys got dirty and carved pumpkins this year. Davis carved (lots of "administrating":) a Mario face into his pumpkin. Mark sadly did not love his carving work this year since I bought him a rotten pumpkin. So sad.

I took the little boys to a pumpkin patch to buy pumpkins for the above carving party. They had such a great time. There was a barrel train, tons of fun animals, a bounce house and one of those "carnival style strength tester machines". Parker asked me to go first and I only got it about half way to the bell. He took two swings at it and it rang the bell . . . hmmm, strong Parker (/weak mommy)! I'm choosing to believe that it was because I was already so tired from lifting 8 gigantic pumpkins into my car.
Davis and Parker had wanted to dress up as Mario and Luigi all year. They talked about it all the time and there was no question when Halloween finally arrived that they wanted to be the Nintendo Brothers. Gray got to wear a hand me down dragon that I chose to call Bowser since his Toad costume would not stay on.
Halloween night we toured our neighborhood. The boys were only good for about 1 1/2 streets. In fact, they were fighting over who got to ride in the double stroller. At one point Davis even asked to be rolled up to the door to say trick or treat so he wouldn't loose his spot. (True Davis fashion - carted around to get candy - awesome!)
The boys with our neighbor - Adalyn - just love that little lady bug.
We love living one street away from Uncle David's house. They let us crash in there for a little bit for chili and some more cousin fun. This was a standard photo op for the Kronwald cousin clan - I love the continued tradition :)