Friday, July 03, 2015

Photo Fail

The kids decided they all wanted to match so I decided pictures needed to be taken. Things started off rocky with Boston having just woken up from a nap. He usually likes to be held for at least 20 minutes after waking to adjust back to life but we didn't have time for that since we were rushing out the door for the groundbreaking.

Jane tried to help by holding him close. Oh, look at Wendy's adorable smile!

This was the best picture.

Boston doesn't like being restrained by his sisters so after many screams I told Jane to let go.

Trying to stand him up didn't work either. Ha! Jane tried to help by holding his arm under her chin.

And JUST as Boston was about to cooperate, I went and bonked Wendy in the head with the camera. That was the end of picture taking. She tried to be obedient and brave for pictures but her cheeriness just wasn't there.

Oh, well. Kind of a funny experience. Sometimes you take a hundred pictures and don't get the money shot but you do get a slice of reality with 3 kids...

Thursday, July 02, 2015

A Party for the Boss

Bossy Boy accomplished one whole year of life so naturally we had to celebrate! We invited his little friends over for some pizza, cupcakes and playing and had a fun time. Here are some pictures:

I made the mistake of hanging those twists a week before the party. I obviously wasn't thinking about my little crawling boy who likes to touch everything, especially new colored things hanging at his level. Luckily, after a week of stressing about where he was at all times, I only had to replace two.

The birthday boy! I just love this little turkey so much!

His sisters were both standing by to blow out the candle for him.

After making his wish he tasted the second sweet of his life (the first being a cookie Wendy snuck him at the store) and he wasn't the biggest fan at first.

But, after a while he warmed up to it and ate over half of it.

Time to wash up! Surprisingly, he didn't get that messy!

That's better, nice and clean!

Time for presents!

He really had zero interest in even touching the gifts so his sisters stepped up again to help. They really are such selfless girls.

Sporting one of his gifts, this cute little hat. I'm in love.

Happy birthday my little baby boy!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Bring on Summer!

The first warmish day of the year meant a beach day! This also meant Boston's first sand experience! Earlier this month we picked Jane up from school and walked straight there. She was surprised and excited to see us all in our beachwear. I put her swim suit in her backpack and told her to change in the school bathroom so she sneakishly told her teacher she needed to use the bathroom. She was so giddy. Out she came with a big grin and her swim suit poking out under her uniform.

We've lived here coming up on 9 years and we are still surprised at the temperature drop when we walk the block to the beach. The "warmish day" was actually quite chilly but we didn't let that stop us and played for about an hour. I couldn't believe the girls played in the water as much as they did. You wouldn't know they were freezing if it weren't for their chattering teeth. Eek! They still denied they were cold and wanted to stay.

Boss and I stayed nice and dry on a towel up on the sand. Here's my cutie little 1 year old in his adorable little swim suit:

He didn't venture off the towel but enjoyed his time at the beach.

Here is a non-exciting video of the kids at the beach and Boston attempting to touch the sand:

The beginning of the beach season means we are a little low on sand toys (having lost or broken them all by the end of last beach season) but this girly was happy as a peach to play with a plastic cup! Oh, I just love her smile. Drastic difference from the previous summers. No more fear of sand!

This girl could have spent the whole evening at the beach. Ok, she could spend EVERY day at the beach. Pretty girl.

While they played, Boston and I tried our hand at some mom/son selfies:

The wind and this silly kid trying to grab my phone every 2 seconds made for some funny but perfect pictures.

 He's so goofy. He only ate sand twice! Once as a test and the second time just to make sure his findings were correct. Smart little guy.

My favorite:

These next 3 are from the following week when we surprised Jane with another after school beach day. Siblings!

Here's to many more warm days!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Downtown Chicago Groundbreaking

This last weekend we had the opportunity to attend the groundbreaking of the new and only downtown Chicago LDS (Mormon) church building! It was announced years ago but like many things in Chicago (taking 15+ minutes to drive 3 miles), things just take longer. It will still be years till we get to hold our first meeting in it but we have broken ground and that's a HUGE milestone!

Here are some pictures from the event:

Brandt was out till midnight the night before getting the stage and chairs and left at 7am that morning to get everything set up. I took the train down with the 3 kiddos. They enjoyed that very much.

They also enjoyed seeing their daddy when we got there. Family selfie (minus Jane)!

Boss spent most of the ceremony on Dad's shoulders ripping as much hair out as his little muscles would allow and the girls spent most of the time playing in piles of debris strewn around the empty parking lot and bringing me "special treasures" also known as broken bits of glass and wires.

The Primary children had been practicing a song and were able to go up and sing it. They did such a good job! Jane shoved a granola bar into her mouth right before it was time to go up and wouldn't go up because she was still chewing. The only way I could get her to go was to have her spit it out into my hand. Just one nasty but typical thing I do as a mom. Meh.

The girls singing their song:

The leaders of our local Stake breaking ground:

Brandt got a chance to do the same because he's the Elder's Quorum President of our ward:

The primary children got a chance next!
They had been looking forward to this for weeks!

The next day we went to church at the school we meet at till we get our new building. Here are the girls showing off their new Sunday clothes and church bags from Aunt Angela:

While we often complain about meeting at the school, we're grateful to have a place to call ours until we get a building and are truly grateful for our church leaders and all they are doing to acquire a more permanent place for us!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Two Front Teeth

It happened! Jane has lost both her front teeth! One has been gone for a while but the other has been wiggly for what seems like years. On Sunday night she was eating dinner and the way she bit down made it crooked. She was so distraught. She was in tears. She wanted it out but didn't want it out. There were so many emotions. This picture pretty much sums it up:

The next morning she told me she wanted me to pull it. She was so brave. I gave it a twist-tug and out it came. She giggled the whole time we rinsed her mouth out, letting the blood drain down the sink. She was elated that it was out AND that it meant she'd be getting a surprise. Here she is before school:

Cute girl. She knows I am the tooth fairy but we still talk about the tooth fairy as if it's a role I play and she still gets so excited. In the past she told me what she wanted the tooth fairy to bring her and I have complied. This time she told me she wanted the tooth fairy to choose. The tooth fairy chose a pirate treasure chest art kit she picked up on clearance months ago. Brandt wrote her a note, hung it on her bed hook and when she woke in the morning she read it and followed the tape lines Brandt put down that lead to the treasure chest. Sure kept her quiet, happy and busy until the rest of the house woke up!

I adore her new smile and wish I could freeze this face forever.

She was excited to go to school and show her friends that it came out. Little did she know she'd get a big surprise at school that day. The vice principle came into her classroom and presented her with this award:

How awesome is that!? It was just recognition and a pencil but it was so cool to see her be awarded something, especially since I had no idea they'd even do anything for the Box Tops she brought in last month! It couldn't have been possible without all our friends and family who sent all the boxtops. Thanks again!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Typical Tuesday

I've been a mom for over 6 years now. It's going by way too fast and beyond slow at the same time. I so badly want three year old Jane back because I didn't appreciate her as much as I should have, yet I can't wait for Boston to start talking and walking. I wish I could have it both ways. Since I can't, let's live in the now.

This is our now.

Brandt took Jane to school on his way to work this morning while Boston napped and I cleaned the kitchen with Wendy at my feet doing puzzles and playing with the new toys my friend gave us last night. The maintenance man was vacuuming in the hallway so I opened our door and told him our lock wasn't working (kind of a problem). I was wearing scrubby clothes, my hair was a mess and I had my glasses on but I'm not really trying to empress Charlie The Maintenance Man from Poland so I invited him in to fix it. Wendy drew him a thousand pictures and he loved every one. Our door now locks... so that's good :)

We rushed out the door after Boss woke up from his nap like we always do on Tuesdays for Wendy's speech therapy and were 10 minutes late like always because I misjudged time. Doesn't help that on Tuesdays Wendy always wants a sack lunch to eat in the car on the way home from "speech school" and I don't get my act together to make it till we are already running late. I think today I threw in graham crackers, pepperoni, a hotdog bun and pringles (yeah... I know...). She ate again when we got home.

(The very exciting hallway Boss and I get to enjoy for an hour each week during speech.)

Boston went down for his second nap and I put Wendy in her room for "Independent Time". She played quietly for a long time and I dozed off for a few minutes on the couch. When Boston woke up I went in to tell her she could come out and was quite confused because I couldn't find her for a minute. No wonder she was quiet. I pulled a very sleepy and confused Wendy out from under her bed, by her feet, so we could get ready to go get Jane from school.

(With 2 empty beds above her, she opted for the hardwood floor.)

We walked to Jane's school, surprised her with a piece of licorice and she spent 5 minutes telling me how much she loved me and how I was the best mom in the world on our way to a park. I have a feeling that speech was inspired by the surprise candy and surprise park visit so I think I should do that more often. At the park, Boston had his first fruit snack and was very confused by the shadow on the ground (thinking he couldn't cross it), Jane made a million friends like she always does and Wendy played so hard, climbing on everything and practicing some gymnastics moves.

After playing we walked to the store with Nicole and her kids. First stop, water fountain... if that's what you call the thing that SHOOTS water 6 feet or more into the air:

The water fountain you have to close your eyes to drink from or be blinded... eek!

I love this picture of our city kids riding their scooters to the store:

On the way home Jane fell off the scooter and banged up her tummy and elbows pretty bad so I got to push her, Boston and a stroller full of groceries almost 2 miles home. Wendy was a champ and walked the whole way, keeping up with me (though I was going pretty slow pushing a million pounds). By the end she told me she was tired of walking but she made it the whole way! They ate a salad I bought at the store on the walk home and I fed them a little more dinner when we got home before getting to bed an hour late.

After Brandt got home, I met up with a friend for ice cream who is moving from Chicago this month and it was yummy and fun to hang out with her. Once day we'll leave Chicago and I joke/not joke about wanting to leave every week but I'll try and enjoy it in the now. This chapter will be over before I know it.