Monday, June 16, 2008

Happy Father's Day!

Father's Day and Mother's Day are working holidays, if ever there were any. Since there's never a day off from parenthood, the best a parent can hope for is at least a warm breakfast, a little extra dose of obedience from the children, and a handmade card or two.

Daddy lucked out on two of those three things this Father's Day. Guess what was missing? Yes, the obedience! Father's Day dawned a bit cloudy but the dreary weather didn't deter the boys' spirits as they propelled themselves on top of Daddy. In spite of Daddy's shouts and groans of "no, no, no" and Mommy's comparatively weak and disinterested pleas to the same, children ran amok on our bed early yesterday morning with little limbs poking in places that assure Helios and Hesperos that they will be the only children in our small family.

Afterward, we trundled into the car to enjoy a Sunday brunch off the lake at a local restaurant. Hesperos was particularly fond of the waffles (missing is the photo of Hesperos and the chocolate chips, wherein we see the remnants of the great Chocolate Chip Monster that Hesperos roundly defeated by eating a glorious finish!).

Contrary to how it may appear in this photo, Helios also enjoyed himself at brunch -- the still position and pained smile was the price he paid for being allowed to cut his own waffle with a knife.

Following the brunch festivities, there was a little bit of shopping, a little bit of undisciplined behavior on the part of little children, a nice long nap that corrected much of it, and then early evening entertainment featuring Helios' very own composition, "An Ode to Grandpas on Father's Day."

Happy Father's Day to Daddy, Grandpa Wil, and Grandpa Mel!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

"Mommy, I'm Sick."

Earlier last month, Helios climbed into bed with Mommy and Daddy. While Mommy appreciated the extra warmth (it's now June and she's still waiting for summer), Helios was clearly burning up. With a plaintive little cry he whimpered, "Mommy, I'm sick."

When these little boys are sick, it is extremely difficult for Mommy and Daddy to tell. They rarely run fevers and even less tell-tale physical signs like red ears and skin splotches are noticeably missing. If they appear even the slightest bit cranky, generally a train or some popcorn does the trick and they're happy as clams. (Why are clams so happy? Are they even sentient beings? Don't they know they're going to be eaten?) In fact, they often can have raging ear or sinus infections and we won't know until they are thoroughly miserable, days after the infection has set in. There are few early warning signs. So, when Helios came in pleading illness, we figured it was legit.

Mommy took Helios to the doctor that day and imagine her surprise when, a couple of x-rays later, we learned he had bacterial pneumonia! Oops. We missed that one. So, Helios came home and, for the next few days, in between spurts of energetic activity, he rested on the couch with two fleece blankets, both made by Grandma Jane, and a heating pad while watching episodes of Thomas the Tank Engine and Signing Time. The rest (plus the heavy-duty anti-biotic) must have done the trick -- within three days, he was torturing Hesperos again and arguing over who got to play with the trains.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Even Sheets Are Fun When You're Little

A few months ago, Mommy and Daddy were working on painting the ceilings and had the floors covered accordingly with canvas drapes. For some reason, the novelty of having canvas drapes on the floor was excitement itself for the boys. Without needing any prompting or encouragement at all, they took the opportunity to run in circles on the drape while shouting "whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa." We don't understand it, we don't know why. But if a canvas drape is good for 30 minutes of mindless exercise and entertainment, who needs preschool and toys?

Friday, June 6, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

Some celebrate with chocolate, some with flowers, some with romantic evenings. The people who celebrate Valentine's day that way either don't have little people or are better endowed with babysitters.

For our family, Valentine's day is more of a family affair reminiscent of Easter but without an egg-depositing fluffy bunny. This is thanks to Mommy and her attempts to game the system when she was a little person herself. When Mommy figured out that Grandma Joan and Grandpa Wil were indispensable helpers to Santa and the Easter Bunny, she slyly decided that they could provide the same level of support to the Great Valentine and the Sparkly Firecracker, two B-list holiday celebrities....that she invented...right at that moment.

Since then, Valentine's Day has been more than just an opportunity to trade cards with classmates -- it's also a bagged gift affair replete with small wrapped toys, balloons, and bags of popcorn from Aunt Sully. But the best part was the Valentine's chocolate brownies, heart-shaped and eaten with love.