Sunday, April 25, 2010

Mad Face

Sunday, April 25, 2010
It's hard to have the camera ready at the right time. Yesterday morning we were at the computer, watching a video from the Christensen Family blog of when Luke's cousins sang him Happy Birthday. I told Luke it was about time to get in the bath. Then I got the mad/sad/disappointed face. So I busted out the camera. Hey, Luke, can I see your mad face? I asked.

Um, nope, that's not it. I had my camera ready to see if there would be a spontaneous repeat. There was, but it was not well documented. We would watch the video and I would tell him it was the last one and we'd have to get in the bath soon.

No, more birthday. Luke would let me know. So we'd repeat the process.

I wasn't trying to torture my kid, I promise. He was pretty smelly and did need a bath. I just happened to have the camera there. I just with that I had gotten the full-on pout face with his lips stuck out and brow furrowed. He gave it to a little girl at story time that was trying to do a good deed and put his scarf away for him. He gives it when Mac leaves for work and he says "My Dad". I can't wait to get that face on camera. I know that may sound terrible, but I love seeing his expressions and emotions.

Eventually I convinced him that we could watch more of the video after the bath. In a situation like that I'm kind of hoping he forgets about it (seeing as we had already watched it 20 times). Well, this is him right after drying off.


No, not the Swedish rock band. Luke's bestest friend, Abby. He pronounces it abba. I love this little girl more and more every day. There are many reasons to love Abby, 'cause she's a great kid. Right now I'm thinking of two reasons: she loves me right back, and she puts up with Luke. Even when Luke is in a jealous mood and wants to steal every single toy she looks at, or has a hard time remembering not to push, she still loves him and is patient with him. I'm not quite sure why Abby loves me so much, but she does. She loves to snuggle in my lap and read books and has a hard time saying goodbye to Luke and I. She is so cute and sweet and little that I want to eat her right up.

They had their first kiss within the last week or two. Abby moved in for the kill. At first Luke didn't know what to think. Then he went back in for seconds and thirds. Sometimes Abby is in the mood for hugs when Luke isn't, but it's sure cute when they're both in the mood for hugs.

We went on a walk that was probably less than an eighth of a mile but took quite a while because they like to meander and explore. To get them back home Holly enticed them with bubbles. Good thinking, Holly.


This is from last weekend when we were coming back from Hillsborough. Luke sang his basketball song almost the whole way home and it's hard to make out, but seriously cute. I didn't even have to coach him.

My mom is teaching a new baby class at tricks for babies 10 weeks to crawling. She bough this demonstration baby so she can show the moms in her class to do at Target not realizing that it laughs whenever you press its tummy. At least Luke likes it! He actually hates the bow on the baby's shirt- he's always trying to get me to take it off. Notice how he says "itsy-bitsy"? I must have sung that song 200 times this week.

Luke loves sticks. There are probably 5 sitting inside my house by the door because he can't part with them when it's time to come in from outside. He loves poking things, and for some reason when he pokes trees they go "beep". I think, maybe, there is too much technology in his life if he thinks even trees go beep.

Red Robin. Yum!

I think Mac and I went to Red Robin on every other date before we were married. Yesterday we decided to go to dinner and that was Mac's first suggestion. I threw out a few other ideas, but I could tell he really wanted Red Robin, so we went. They seated us in a big corner booth, which is always nice when you have a kid that wants to roam around. Luke was having a ball watching the t.v., looking at the pictures and dancing to the music. Of course by the time I get the camera out, the cute dancing has stopped, so I get to look like a stage mom and coach him. I swear there was tons of spontaneous dancing, too.

Just as we put in our order I look to the door. Hmmm. That looks like my mom's hair. I think of the lady that just walked in. Doesn't Emily have a sweater just like that? I think of the next girl that walks in. I begin to wonder if it is them. Just then I feel my phone vibrating- it's my dad. I see a boy that is definitely Peter walk in. Dad asks me if I'm at Micheal's or Nordstrom Rack (nearby stores). I tell him that we're in the same place and we both can't believe the coincidence. I mean, there are dozens of restaurants in Roseville and Mac and I rarely eat out. Plus, my dad was pretty against Red Robin. Luckily the booth was big because the Schofields joined us. I really need to get better about remembering to take photos.

My only regret of the evening was my order. I pretty much always get the Banzai burger. Because I've been trying to be better about my meat consumption, I went with the Boca burger. Sorry to the good people of Boca, but it doesn't compare. If you're going to pick and choose when you eat meat, make Red Robin a meat night.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Butterfly Kisses

Saturday, April 17, 2010
Mornings around here are my favorite, but then again I've always been a morning person. I wake up anywhere between 4:30 and 6:30 whenever my crazy body clock decides, and Luke is usually up by 7:00. It's the only time the whole family is able to hang out without worrying about dinner and bedtime rituals. Mac makes breakfast while I snuggle Luke on the couch. Sometimes we just space out for an hour, other times we trade off who goes on a run/ride and who stays with Luke. Once everybody is clean and decent there's not much time before Mac leaves for work. Some of our best memories happen before work. This is one of them-butterfly kisses on the couch.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Pizza Night

Friday, April 16, 2010
Having my own family means that I can make up new traditions. I can just willy-nilly makes stuff up as I go. For a few months now, I have deemed Friday night Pizza Night. I've also recently discovered that Luke can and loves to help make these pizzas. I try to do as much prep work when he's asleep so that when dinner time comes around we just spread and sprinkle and shove it in the oven.

It cracks me up when he dumps every handful of cheese in the same spot.

I'm getting better at the dough (which I do half whole-wheat because any more and it tastes like cardboard) and I've found ways to sneak more vegetables onto the pizza. I grate carrots really finely and spread it over the sauce under the cheese. Sometimes I'll put thinly sliced zucchini in there, too, but only on some of the recipes. My favorite is a tie between BBQ Mango and Cheddar-Mushroom-Broccoli. Neither of those can be tainted with more veggies. Mac says he likes them all and Luke just says "pza".

Friday, April 09, 2010

Basketball Song

Friday, April 09, 2010
Luke really likes it when I sing to him in the car. He even makes requests. "Dog," he'll say, and I scramble to think of a dog song. "How much is that doggie in the window" is the only one I can think of. He has me stumped on the "basket" song. I know what he means- he wants a basketball song. The only ball song I know is the "take me out to the ball game one". That doesn't satisfy, so I say "YOU sing a basketball song, Luke". This is what he came up with. It's not a long song, but I like it. I sure hope this song-writing thing is not a fluke.

Friday, April 02, 2010


Friday, April 02, 2010
The last fire drill post was just the tip of the iceberg as far as things that can go wrong are concerned. I won't discuss all the gory details of the trip except to excuse my camera. You see, the first thing that went wrong with the trip was that I left the diaper bag on the kitchen table along with the camera and diapers and my money. So these are the best my phone could muster.

Luke's favorite part of the trip was the hotel. We spent a couple hours at the aquarium when we got there and then went to the hotel to eat and swim. Luke had a ball in the pool with all the big kids till past his bedtime. Then he wanted to run around the room and check everything out. I finally enticed him to bed with junk food (popcorn and fries, mostly) and the thrilling Monterey channel (of the beach) to calm him down. Bedtime was less of a struggle than I thought it would be.

The next day at the aquarium he really liked the fish:

I sure think the penguins are cute:

Luke was put to sleep by the kelp forest feeding:

I didn't get pictures of it, but I always love the jelly fish and the sea horse exhibits.

Peter and Blake thought their dolphin phones were pretty funny. Blake was the best behaved on the trip. Including the adults.

We went to the beach next, but didn't get out of the car because Luke was starving and just wanted to eat. From there we got sourdough clam chowder bowls and calamari at the Wharf. Before we made the should-have-been-3 1/2-hour-but-turned-into-5 1/2 hour trip home we stopped at Denis the Menace Park. Somehow the videos I took didn't get saved, but I did get one picture of the train. I remember bits and pieces of this park from when I was a kid, and this train is part of those memories. I also remember the cool slide and bridge (not pictured).

Luke entertained himself for a bit on the ride home.
Playing peek-a-boo with his baseball:

Turning a straw into glasses:

And making a "hat" out of his "basketball hoop":

One last and final complaint. Along with the forgotten diaper bags were the diapers. I had a few swim diapers for the hotel pool and the beach, and tried to use them wisely. Well, on the ride home (where it's not really possible to stop for the bathroom because the kid has a bladder the size of a hummingbirds') I learned that swim diapers are very, very leaky. Arg. Ok, off to unpack and catch up on housework and sleep!

A Whodunit

Whoooooop-Whooooooop - There has been an emergency in the hotel - Please proceed to the stairs - Do not take the elevator - Whooooooop - Whooooooooop - Whoooooop-Whooooooop - There has been an emergency in the hotel - Please proceed to the stairs - Do not take the elevator - Whooooooop - Whooooooooop - Whoooooop-Whooooooop - There has been an emergency in the hotel - Please proceed to the stairs - Do not take the elevator -

My adrenaline is pumping already, along with the fast, steady thumping of my heart. Luke lets out a scream- whether from the alarm startling him or from his mother snatching him out of bed and sleep, I can't recall. We bound out of bed together and I throw open the door to the next room. "Peter, Blake, get up!" I urge. Peter starts to throw clothes on over his boxers and I tumble into my shoes and match up Luke's from the floor. Ooooh, Luke's jacket. We might need that, I think. With the boys right behind me we open the door into the unknown emergency. No smoke. No people. All twelve flights of hotel and no one is out yet. We find the stairs and others start emerging from their rooms.

Down the stairs and into the lobby. I start to open the door and the icy air is already penetrating my thin pajamas. No smoke, no need to go outside, I reason. More people trickle down the stairs and out into the parking lot, presumably to get in their cars. This coastal air is far too cutting to be out in at this time of night. Or morning. My mom finds me. "I wonder what the big emergency is," and I'm beginning to doubt an emergency after all. Thinking more clearly at 4:30 in the morning than anyone should have to my mother replies "Don't you remember? It's April Fools."

The fire engines pull up and the firefighters have a distinct lack of spring in their step. Their sirens aren't even on. Luke doesn't care what time it is, he just wants to check out those flashing lights. I take him outside and realize that in my panic I didn't bring a hotel key. I doubt either of those 12 year old boys I'm sharing the room with had the presence of mind to bring a key either.

I look back inside and the lobby is emptying. People are heading up the stairs and back in their rooms. Convincing Luke that we should go inside and find The Nana, I get in line with the other idiots who have forgotten their keys. At least I'm not the only one. I overhear the one hotel employee on duty at this time of day and one of the firefighters talking about the false alarm. As I wait my turn to get a key made, I wonder if the April Fools prankster is enjoying the hilarity of his joke. Up the elevator goes an elderly lady with a walker. I wonder if she thought it was funny. A family wheels their disabled child back into the lobby- they don't seem to be laughing. One lady comes back inside and asks me "So it was a false alarm, right?" I nod. "Too bad my kids are so freaked out they won't step a foot inside the hotel. I guess we'll have to wait it out at Starbucks until they calm down." Nana bids us adieu and heads back to room and bed with Emily and Jordyn in tow.

Finally back in our room, I explain to Luke that we have to go back to sleep. He gives me a dirty look (no joke, you should see his dirty looks) and signs "play" and says "Nana". I apologize that Nana is already in her room, sleeping. Luke gives me the boo-boo face and cries "Nana". Sorry, buddy, it's night-night time. I turn off the lights and try to get Luke to snuggle me. As I pat his back and shhhhhhh-shhhhhh-shhhhhhh him to sleep (and try to drift off myself) I think of all the April Fools joke I would have preferred. Maybe that pound cake and strawberry cream that looks like french fries and ketchup. Or maybe the pound cake and frosting made to look like grilled cheese. Or even the shepherd's pie that looks like a cupcake.

I sure hope they catch the punk that made the sprinklers go off and got me out of bed. I hope he gets 300 hours of community service and for that service he makes April Fools food for all of the nice hotel patrons that he needlessly awoke.

*Authors note: This has been a work of non-fiction. The less-than-thrilling conclusion to our Monterey trip is up next. Oh, and I couldn't figure out in my story how to include the fact that the 3 of 4 nights prior to this incident I had had terrible insomnia. So bad that I couldn't knock myself out with Bedtime Tea, Calms Forte and Melatonin. Waaaah! Pity me and my occasional insomnia, please.