Saturday, November 20, 2010

Waste of Money

Apparently we wasted our money on beds and cribs for our boys.

Since getting his toddler bed a few weeks ago, we have discovered Elliott asleep on the floor next to his bedroom door a few times. We always know he's there when we try to open his door and it won't open all the way.

And while Jason was tucking Elliott in his bed for a nap today, Emerson fell asleep in the middle of playing. If only he would sleep this well at night.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


This is what Elliott built this weekend:

Elliott (and Jason) put together a toddler bed on Saturday. Elliott was excited and slept in it Saturday and Sunday. But as of yesterday, he has started to take full advantage of his new found freedom to get up from his bed anytime he wants. We put Elliott to bed numerous times last night until he finally tuckered out.

Here were some of his attempts to lure us to his room (and I guess I shouldn't call them attempts because many of them were successful although for the most part I just set him back in his bed and walked out).

To understand our experience, you have to picture exactly how Elliott was calling for us. Elliott doesn't understand the concept of a baby monitor and the fact that we can hear him loud and clear. So each time he'd get out of bed, he'd lay with his face smashed up against his bedroom door and scream through the gap between the door and floor.

''Mama, I have an idea." ( I never heard what this grand idea was, but he was insistent on it)

"Mama, wanna talk about Jackson?"

"Do you wanna watch Incredibles?"

"Open the door please." and after a while, just plain, "Open the door!"

And then sweetly, "Do you wanna lay in my bed?"

Later, "Semi-truck in the bed!''

When he got desperate, "I need to go poo-poo." and I actually put him on the toilet since he has refused to sit on the toilet for about a week. But of course, nothing happened.

By 10:10 last night, it was silent. Finally, success:

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Oh Happy Day!

This sweet boy was full of giggles today! He's usually a happy little guy, full of smiles, but today was the first time I had heard him laugh.

And this morning was shared with a dear group of friends and all our babies. Our morning was lively and quite a contrast to when we used to all hang out...prebabies. But it was oh so refreshing to gather with good friends and enjoy how our babies are growing up (too fast).

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Little Drummer Boy

Elliott is a musical little guy. Between the concerts he goes to with Grandma and the instrument gifts from Uncle Chris & Aunt Kristi, Elliott has always enjoyed listening to and making his own music.

Jason often plays guitar with Elliott (they have written their own songs and everything). Sometimes Elliott plays guitar along with Jason (and they both sing) but lately Elliott has been developing skill in a new instrument: the drums.

And yes, those are my candle holders he is using as his 'drum set'.

And no (Chris and Kristi) he does NOT need a real drum set for Christmas.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Trucks Win Again

Elliott loves trucks, I mean, he really LOVES them. Even kisses them sometimes. I often play trucks with him, but today I pulled out a color sorting game for some quality mommy & Elliott time while Emerson took a morning nap.

I told Elliott we were going to play a game and he became really enthusiastic.

Everything went well ...for about 10 minutes. We took turns rolling the color die (he thought that was great fun) and then finding the matching color to put in the tray.

Elliott was having a blast and then he excitedly said "Mama, go wake up Emerson." I sweet of my boy, he wants Emerson to play with us too! What a great brother! I explained Emerson was still sleeping and the two of us could play more.

He thought a bit. Then he said "Mama, go downstairs" meaning, Mama, you go downstairs and leave me alone. So he wanted to play by big deal... I could unload the dishwasher.

BUT a few minutes later, I peeked in on him and discovered he wanted to play a different game altogether.

Enough of the color finding game, he wanted to play the "game" with trucks. He spent about a half hour filling up his trucks with the colored circles and dumping them all over the floor, then racing his trucks through them.

He liked his game much more than mine. Oh well. Trucks win again.

Friday, September 17, 2010


Snippets from conversations from today with this adorable kid:

"No, I'm sorry you can't have any of Emerson's milk. I don't think you'll like it."
(I'm breastfeeding)

"No, the money doesn't need any chapstick." (as I wipe off slimy coins)

"No, don't eat the playdough." (Elliott's response: "But it smells good."


And here's a pic of our sweet, joyful Emerson.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hard Day's Work

This is the result of a lovely afternoon of playing at Grandma & Grandpa's house.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Wintry Summer

It is summer, right? Although it has been cold and cloudy most days, we decided to go to the beach anyway. Elliott had fun playing at Mukilteo Beach last week despite the cold wind. We walked down on the rocks and found a few tiny crabs. And he also found LOTS of tiny rocks (sand). He kept trying to grab just one grain of sand to hold onto but it didn't work out so well.

Friday, June 11, 2010

A New Expense

Elliott cut his finger on a toy this evening and it was bleeding a little. He silently and calmly walked over to Jason and showed him. It was actually bleeding enough to warrant a band-aid, his very first one.

Jason took him upstairs to wrap his finger in a band-aid....and Elliott FREAKED out. Like many other things (toy car wheels, legos, and more recently his own ears, eyes and ummmm other newly discovered body parts) he likes to try take things apart or to tear things off. ("Ears off, Mama. Eyes out Mama.") The band-aid was pretty securely wrapped around his finger and he couldn't pull it off.

Like everything else, he urgently wanted the band-aid OFF.

He cried very sadly and pathetically....and we ended up taking the band-aid off. The cut had stopped bleeding, but was still an open sore and at risk for infection so I would have preferred it to be covered.

So I came to terms again with the fact that I am going to have to do something, I said I'd never do. those darn expensive band-aids with cartoon characters on them. (I'm SURE we can find Cars band-aids!). I am such a frugal person that I actually look at the price per unit on almost everything I buy (jucie: 17 cents per pint or 25 cents per pint?). Those Disney band-aids are like three TIMES the cost of plain, store brand band-aids. Oh well. Some things are worth the extra money.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Sometimes You Have to Let Go

Elliott discovered my childhood collection of legos when we rearranged our bedroom the other day. He already plays with toddler sized duplos and we had been storing the legos for when he is older but once he discovered the box, there was no way we could hide them from Elliott anymore without him asking for them every 3 seconds.

Before going on, let me say that my parents supplied with me with a large collection of legos. I loved legos! I would play for hours and hours. In addition to the standard lego sets, I had special sets that made rooms of a house, like furniture for a lego doll house. I had a complete kitchen with cupboards, tables, chairs, and that is just the tip of the ice berg. I also had a complete living room set (even with a fireplace), classroom and nursery. These special legos had smooth pieces so my kitchen table and countertops were realistic. I NEVER took these pieces apart once we had created it. Sure, I built things with the standard lego sets and took them apart often according to whatever creative whim I had, but not with the special legos.

Literally, these legos were not broken apart for about 25 years until this past weekend when Jason and Elliott dived in. They set out to build a semi-truck. And they attacked my special lego sets for apparently essential semi-truck pieces.

This is all that is left of my kitchen. The tables and chairs are completely gone.

This is all that is left of my classroom, living room and nursery.

But this is the result....a very realistic semi-truck. I thought I was pretty good at building things with legos....but Jason, he is awesome!

And this is how Elliott feels about his semi-truck.

More joy from Elliott.

Elliott is obsessed with this semi-truck and wants to play with it constantly. Note the lego people on the top. Elliott told us it was Grandpa and Elliott. Grandpa also has a red hat and a yellow coffee cup, but Elliott likes to carry those pieces around separately.

So goodbye lego doll house furniture. You didn't have a chance in a house full of boys!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Boys and Guns

Elliott is a boy. And I've been warned that the time will come when Elliott will start to play with toy guns, even if we don't buy them, that he will make guns out of sticks, legos, or other toys.

I thought I was prepared for this, but I also thought our first encounter with toys guns would come a lot later.

Today we were at Alfy's pizza and Elliott discovered their arcade room. For the longest time he was enthralled with the driving game. But then he noticed an older boy playing a shooting game with a toy gun. Elliott was captivated. He watched this boy carefully, and sure enough, as soon as the boy was done, Elliott grabbed one of the toy guns.

I didn't have the words in my brain to react to this. Several possible responses went through my mind... "Elliott, we don't play with guns. Guns are dangerous." or "Elliott you can play with toy guns when you are older." or " Yes, you can shoot at the game, but not at people." and on and on. Truthfully, I just didn't know what to say. We don't really know how we feel about the whole toy gun thing and how we're going to parent that...after all, he already attacks Jay with a lightsaber and what is the difference?

So you can imagine my relief when Elliott turned to me in pure joy and announced he was at the gas station and stuck the gun into the wall to fill up his ''truck."

Guns, we'll deal with you later!

Wake Up Puzzle!

This morning I woke up to some odd pounding noise...for a moment I wondered which neighbor had the nerve to do construction work at 7 on a Saturday morning. Then I realized the sound was coming from Elliott's room.

Jason went to investigate and discovered the little explorer had managed to reach over the end of his crib and grab a puzzle from a bookshelf.

Elliott exclaimed "I got a puzzle!"' over and over again. This is quite significant because the only words he usually says first thing in the morning are "Mama, mama, wake up!" or "I'm hungry."

After a few moments, Jason even prompted, "Do you want to go find Mama?" to which he replied, "I got a puzzle!"

Friday, May 14, 2010

Recent Pics

The force isn't with him....yet.

On his way to China.

Handsome boy.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Happy Birthday?

I'm not sure whose birthday we were celebrating today, but this morning I heard Elliott singing ''Happy Birthday" in the living room. A few minutes later he brought me a "cake"' with two "candles." Then he blew out the candles....and ate one.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Peer Pressure

Last night Elliott's buddy Jack spend the night. The boys had a wonderful time (and me too actually!) Running, shrieking with joy, and laughing filled the house (with an occasional mini crisis of some sort over a toy or something).

But something remarkable happened...I think it was Elliott's first instance of really being influenced by a friend and giving into peer pressure!

We had avacado with our dinner last night and offered the boys some too. Elliott typically refuses avacado but we keep offering anyway.

Well, last night Jack just gobbled up his avacado while Elliott watched carefully. All of a sudden, Elliott decided he needed avacado too! He ate a huge chunk in seconds and maybe actually enjoyed it!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

How Many is Too Many?

Elliott LOVES stuffed animals. He calls them his babies and loves to hug them and snuggle with them. Before naps & bedtime, he will gather all of his babies and throw them into the crib.

He started with just his "boonie"(little blue dog blanket that he has had since birth) and then added "other boonie" when he discovered we had a back-up boonie for emergencies.
(and he was very excited
when he discovered there was a
3rd boonie at my parents' house!)

Then he added "baby lamb", "baby MnM", "teddy bear", and "other teddy bear" (notice the oh so original names he creates).

His crib started to get a little crowded. And then he added more. "Sully" became a favorite after watching Monsters, Inc. "Dragon'', "Ernie" and "Elephant" (actually a Dr. Suess character) soon followed.

"Baby froggie" made his move to the crib when Elliott discovered he plays a little musical tune. Elliott was delighted with froggie. Not so much us when we hear that tune (over and over again) in the middle of the night when Elliott wakes up to check on his babies.

For a while, I've been wondering how many is too many? You know for safety? I don't want Elliott to suffocate....but after all he is 2 years old and could be sleeping with a pillow and blanket that take up space in his crib too.

But the crib was starting to get rather crowded. I wondered...should I put some animals away for a while? Or is it one of those things that doesn't really matter?

Well, I finally got an answer one morning when I walked into his darkened room and had trouble finding my baby in the midst of all the babies. It was just one of those split second questionable moments, but for a second, I wasn't sure which lump was Elliott.

That's when I decided most of the babies were going on a vacation (into the closet).

Elliott hasn't asked for the missing babies yet, but I'm sure he will add more to his collection over time.

Side note: If you notice all of the babies in the photo, they are all laying down. That is not an accident. When we put him down and say goodnight, we'll hear him shuffle around for several minutes over the monitor. He places his babies all lying down, usually around the outer edge of the crib except for his two boonies, 1 under each arm.

And in the mornings...? He "wakes" them up and puts them all sitting up before he calls for me.

Growth Spurt

Elliott has been eating a bit more lately and apparently he needed a bigger spoon:

After he finished his yogurt in a couple of giant bites, he looked at his shovel in surprise and realized it was all messy. He said "Uh oh, what happened?" and asked me to wash his shovel.

Monday, March 1, 2010


Elliott likes to 'help' me sweep. This morning he was sweeping the kitchen and really working on sweeping under the stove. I thought he was just be thorough (that's my boy!), but then he started shouting, "get it! get it!". I looked under the stove and low and behold, there were quite a few interesting things under there:

Yes, the calculator was under the stove too. (How did I not miss my calculator?)

So, what's under your stove?

Saturday, February 13, 2010

It is Official

Elliott is 2. Or at least acting like it. He actually not 2 for a couple more weeks until February 29, well, this year, I guess it is February 28.

So why am I so sure that Elliott has embraced his 2 year old stage of life?

I had to leave Fred Meyer today in the middle of my shopping because of the huge tantrum he threw. And I really didn't want to leave, but Elliott was wild. (so I had to finish my shopping 3 hours later during his naptime which means I didn't get a nap which means I am cranky).

What caused this tantrum? Milk

Early in the shopping trip, I put milk in my cart and he wanted some. NOW. I tried to calmly explain that we can't open the gallon of milk and drink directly out of it (that'll come later, I suppose) and that he could have some water from the water bottle.

Nope. That was not good enough...enter big tantrum. The kind where you throw yourself around in the cart and may hurt yourself. I tried distracting him with other things (pretzels, toy car, shopping list) but no luck. At this point, I was really scared he was going to hurt himself and so we hauled out of there.

And yes, everyone stared. A couple people got out of my way when they saw me carrying an arching, screaming toddler.

He screamed all the way home and into the house.

Now it is later in the day, and he's had some milk and a nice long nap and my sweet, calm, little boy has returned to me.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Con Man

Elliott came down with quite the cold last night. He woke up around 10 pm and was scary wheezy and coughing oddly. We called the doctor and she listened and suspected croup, but it hasn't turned into that so far. (Thank God). He seems to just have a pretty bad cold.

But cold or not, he was a little con man last night. The doctor suggested someone sleep in the same room with him to keep an eye on his breathing. So I went into compassionate-mom-mode and prepared to hunker down with my kiddo.

Plan A:
We tried snuggling in the rocking chair for over an hour.

It went like this: wiggle, snooze, wiggle, snooze, grab the eye brows, drink milk, snooze, repeat. We were both uncomfortable and not sleeping.

I gave up and went to plan B.

Plan B:
By this time, I was really tired and Elliott was not. He was THRILLED with my company. I made a bed on the floor with blankets and pillows. Elliott was fascinated. In the near dark, I tried to sleep and convince Elliott to sleep.

It went like this:

Snuggle, play with cars, escape the room and look for dad, drink milk, snooze, climb on mom and pretend she is a horse (to which I responded: "The horse is dead."), snuggle, grab the eyebrows, snuggle, snooze, and oh yes, fall asleep! Not more than 2 minutes later: wake up because Elliott's leg hit his toy piano and started up a song (you don't want to know what my response was then).

In desperation (mine, Elliott was having a blast being ''sick", mind you, he was breathing just fine the whole time), I went to plan C around 1:45 am.

Plan C:
"Mama is all done." (and oh, I was). Into the crib, goodnight. I shut the door and left the room. He cried for oh, about 3 seconds, and then passed out. I snuck back in after a 2 am snack for the other baby (you know, the one I'm growing), and slept in his room for the rest of the night... just in case.

Friday, February 5, 2010


Here is Elliott enjoying a morning with his buddy, Jack! Such fun friends!

Over the last two years they have evolved from blobs lying on the floor unaware of each other to playing happily in the same room uninterested in each other to playing interactively with each other.

They like to dance to "If You're Happy" (and you know it, clap your hands!), climb into boxes and laundry baskets, color (and throw crayons), and read books.

It has been quite a year of friendship and at the same time, Emily (Jack's mom) and I have evolved as mom friends. We've come along way from those uncertain, overwhelming first months to learning to be confident in our ever-changing parenting adventures. And we're about to jump into it again with new babies on the way! Hopefully Jack and Elliott will just entertain each other while we tend to our new babies. We'll see how that goes.....

Someone is craving pickles!

And is it not me! (Although I am pregnant.)

Elliott loves pickles these days. In the last two days, he has asked for them with every single meal. Pickles for breakfast...yuck!

He gobbles them up before I can get my camera, but I'm going to make an attempt to get him on camera tomorrow and post a picture.

Practice Makes Perfect

Elliott must know his birthday is coming up soon... he has been practicing his unwrapping skills!