Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter at the Beach

We decided to follow in the footsteps of some of our extended family and spend Easter at the beach this year. We got off to a rough start (i.e. crazy traffic because everyone else had the same idea, a dead car battery, buckets of rain...) but lest you think I'm whining unnecessarily, I will move on to the highlights. For instance, this picture up top just warms my heart. How is it that sibling rivalry evaporates into the wind when little toes touch sand? They went from squabbling monkies at breakfast to comrades against the surf.
They loved running from the waves, over and over and over...I won't mention any names but one of these boys used to toddle down the beach, screaming in fear, trying his best to get back to the safety of the beach house. The other one saw the ocean for the first time and ran straight in. They both had a great time this weekend and fell into bed from shear exhaustion.

What is this stuff on my toes? This was Eli's first trip to the beach. Although he spent an hour or so riding in the backpack on Steve's back, it wasn't long before he was clamoring to get down and check it out.

The hole digging began once the surf chasing was finished. It took all of 5 seconds for Eli to get right in the middle of everything and irritate the project manager. I think he delights in the fact that he can make his brothers scream in frustration with just one teeny, tiny poke of his toe into their business.

I thought this was a telling picture because Eli still doesn't walk. But he didn't let that limit his exploration. He has mastered the scoot technique: pushing with his left hand and scooting his bottom across the sand. He went down to the surf and then a long way down the beach, trying to get his hands on a bird. He was very annoyed when I put an end to his bird-chasing and brought him back to our spot on the beach. He's one determined little fella.

Although things didn't go as smoothly as we hoped, everyone enjoyed the time away from our usual routine and the boys are already talking about our next trip to the beach.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Clueless in Cary

We awoke on Saturday morning with an action-packed agenda. Egg hunts, meeting with our realtor, baseball practice...over our coffee and morning newspaper, we casually noted the major storm moving our way. Luke's baseball practice went on as scheduled and as the sky turned dark over our neighborhood and the wind picked up, I began to question our decision to have our 7 year old out on an open field. Just when he came back in the house, the skies opened up. We are a little leary of thunder and lightning around here, so we all sat with our faces pressed to the window and watched the storm go by. A mysterious piece of junk landed on our deck, sort of looked like a clumb of snow and ice. The electricity kept flashing on and off, so we turned off our televisions and computers. We remained in our blissful cocoon of cluelessness until my friend called from Richmond to tell me a tornado was headed for Raleigh. I figured I would check it out later on the weather channel and she emphasized that time was of the essence and maybe we should pay attention. I'm pretty sure the tornado was passing through a neighboring community as we spoke. The mystery junk on our deck was insulation from damaged structures nearby. We immediately turned on the weather channel and watched the coverage. My stomach turned a little bit as I realized how oblivious we were to the danger around us. I'm grateful we weren't effected by the storm, as obviously many others were not as fortunate. Skies cleared on Sunday and the re-scheduled egg hunt was packed with about 1,000 eager hunters. I don't think Luke and Andy were all that impressed with their loot but I'm glad they went.
Not sure what Andy is proclaiming here, maybe a play-by-play of the hunting and gathering.

Such sweet boys, glad they are safe and sound despite their clueless parents.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

It's a Tough Job Being Four

My decision to place Andy in the YMCA's preschool program last fall was a rather hasty one, motivated mostly by my own selfishness rather than his best interests. I wanted him to spend two mornings a week with someone besides me, quite frankly. I was just saying the other day that a 4 year old boy is a force to be reckoned with. Some days I am amazed we are both still standing at dinner time. Given my mindset, I approached his first parent-teacher conference with more than a little fear and trepidation. Much to my surprise, he is thriving and flourishing in his class. They offered only positive feedback for our little firecracker. I held back tears of relief. "What about his anger management?" I inquired hesitantly. His teachers looked at me as if I had three heads and informed me that he kept his emotions in check. "Surely he has trouble sharing?" The assured me he shared quite nicely. I'm sorry, are we talking about the same boy? They laughed knowingly and said, "every parent asks us that." What? I wonder why they demonstrate their best behavior in public and save their tricks and tirades for the mommies. Not fair, I say, not fair!
Andy says he is building a zoo They completed a farm unit recently and this was their milking the cow simulation.
So it turns out my hasty decision has actually been a blessing for both of us. He learns about the world around him through creative play and I have learned that I am not in control. Duh! He is equipped with unique abilities and a quirky personality and he will thrive in the world, regardless of our challenges at home. Hooray for hope!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Seems Like it Happens Overnight...

...we woke up and found a delightful 7 year old in our house. Good thing he's ours. We had a great party celebrating Luke's birthday at a local bowling alley with some of his new friends.
Very focused, standard operating procedure for Luke. It wasn't quite the same as the Wii, a 6 pound bowling ball is a little trickier than the Wii remote. They all had a good time and encouraged each other to keep trying. So sweet.
The adoring younger brother, whole-heartedly singing the birthday song.
Lego mania continues...

We are so thankful for you, Lukester! Happy, happy birthday.