Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Easter Pictures

Some pictures for a certain grandma missing her babies...

Ian shows Laurel how to open Easter eggs.

A little Easter love.

Zonked out while traveling to Maricopa.

Dreaming of jellybeans.

Older cousin, Allison, made sure everyone lined up by height for the Easter egg hunt.

Ready, set, go!

Sprinkler fun needed to cool the kiddies down.

Laurel likes to jump like the Easter bunny.

No Easter would be complete without a little hot tubbing.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Natural Consequences: My Turn

Ian is desperate to retrieve one of his dump trucks from the backyard. I allow him outdoors to accomplish this task. Laurel and I peer out the windows, amused by Ian's tactics in trying to find his truck. After a few minutes, he is frustrated in not locating it. I instruct Laurel to stay inside while I join Ian in his quest.

After thoroughly searching the yard together, Ian and I conclude the truck must still be inside, possibly in his room. Together, we walk to the patio door. Ian turns the door handle and pushes, but the door does not budge. He tries it again and again, but the door remains steadfast. Offering support, I comment, "Ian, remember the handle is tricky. You have to turn it all the way first and then push the door."

This time I try opening the door. As I push against it, I can hear the distinct sound of metal hitting metal from the deadbolt cylinder. My heart stops as I look down and see Laurel on the other side of the glass door reaching for the lock. I flashback to a day about two years ago, when Ian had locked me outside. Learning my lesson, I usually take the house keys with me in case of such an emergency. Today, well, I am feeling just a bit stupid.

I yell through the glass, "Laurel turn the knob all the way around."

She gets up on her tiptoes and reaches for the knob. She turns it, but it doesn't rotate enough to unlock. "Keep turning it!" I urge her.

Laurel turns it the wrong way. "No, Sweetie. Turn it the other way."

She tries again and again, but without any luck. Ian asks, "Why won't Laurel open the door?"

"I don't think she can turn the knob all the way around, Honey." Then the light bulb goes off in my head. Laurel doesn't have enough leverage to reach the knob.

"Laurel, go get the stepstool."

She continues reaching for the lock. "No sweetie, first go get the stepstool."

Finally, she stops messing with the lock and trots off hopefully to get the stepstool. I squint through the glass and watch her retrieve it. She places it next to the door and climbs up. A few more sets of instructions and then, click. Oh, what a beautiful, heart-revitalizing sound.

Quickly, I push open the door in the small gap between it and the stepstool so Laurel is unable to accidentally lock us out again. Whew, another close call. Mental note: Always take the house keys outside with me no matter how short the stint, now matter how quick the task.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Natural Consequences

As parents, we try to protect our children from harm and teach them about possible dangers that lurk in our world. Hopefully our repeated chants sink into their ever growing brains. "Don't touch the stove, it's hot. Stay on the sidewalk so you won't get run over by a car. Pat the dog gently or he may bite."

Unfortunately, there are dangerous situations we parents may have overlooked, and curiosity will overpower any lessons taught.

Ian screams from the top of the stairs. They are nonstop shrieks that get my immediate attention. I race up the stairs and quickly look him over for any signs of injury. I see none. It takes me a few moments to calm him down enough so he can give me any sort of explanation. Between deep breaths, he sobs, "You should not leave the light on. The light hurt me."

My brain races with possible interpretations. He's oddly holding his hand. I look it over and find no cuts. It seems like an eternity before I figure out what Ian is trying to tell me. I remember having seen Ian and Laurel touch the hallway light that is just above the baseboard and behind a piece of translucent plastic. That gets warm, but if he just now touched an actual light bulb, that would be hot enough to burn his skin.

I rush him to the bathroom and immerse his hand in cold water. Within a minute he calms down. I look at his fingertips, and see a white blister forming at the end of his middle finger. "Ian, did Laurel touch the light too?"

"Yes, mommy."

I call Laurel to me and look her over. On her index finger a white blister is forming. I get the step stool for her to stand on and have her dunk her hand in the water also. Why she didn't cry is beyond me.

Upon further investigation, I find out that Ian and Laurel were reaching down between the staircase slats to touch the light bulb in a lamp. Evidently, this was a case of both curiosity killing the cat and monkey see, monkey do.

I discuss the circumstances with the two of them. "Guys, do we touch lights?"

"NO! Lights are hot and burn," yells Ian.

"No, Mommy. Ow, ow, ow," remarks Laurel.

No further lecturing is needed. My two curious kittens have learned their lesson. Some time spent in cold water, a band aid and a kiss alleviate their pain.

Later that evening, while Ian sits on the potty, he states, "Mommy, now I have to earn some more money to buy a new finger!"

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Highland Games - Year 3

This post is for my Mother-in-Law Ann, better known as Grandma Ann. Some of you may remember that she received a double lung transplant last year. This year, she was looking forward to attending the Highland Games, however she unfortunately caught Ian's and Laurel's nasty cold and had to miss it yet again.

Paul helps the kids pose for a picture.

Hand in hand - too sweet!

Our wee man loves his kilt!

Our bonnie lass loves her "Princess dress," as she calls it.

A kilt isn't going to keep Ian from climbing...

...and playing.

Laurel follows Ian's lead.

Going up, up, up...

...and then down...

and down.

Now, that's what I call an ice cream cone!

Ian had to get one with pink on it. Unfortunately after only a few licks, it toppled over, hit his sleeve and landed on the ground. Oh yes, there were tears.

Sweet Laurel was willing to give up her cone to Ian in exchange for Mommy's strawberry shake.

Ian eats this cone more carefully. You can see the pink residue from the last cone's fall on Ian's sleeve.

The day ended with a fun train ride for the kids. I think each car was made from a keg of beer.

Letting My Guard Down

I am in the kitchen making yet another meal (honestly, I feel like I spend half the day in there). Ian is noisily playing with his cars in the living room. Laurel runs to edge of the upstairs landing and yells, "Mommy, don't come upstairs." She then quickly turns her little body and runs back into the upstairs hallway.

A little red flag goes up in the back of my mind. "She's definitely up to something," I think to myself. But considering all the raw chicken goo on my hands, I decide to finish my task.

A minute later, Laurel again runs to the edge of the stairs and yells down at me, "Mommy, don't come upstairs!" and turns tail to return to her adventures.

"Oh yes, she's definitely up to no good," I mutter.

But alas, I am still covered in chicken goo, and quickly try to finish the prep work for the meal.

A third time Laurel runs to the edge of the stairs and commands, "Mommy, don't come upstairs!"

Finally, I am able to wash my hands and run up the stairs to investigate my daughter's evil doings.

Looking in her bedroom, I find nothing. Looking in her brother's bedroom, I find once folded socks, underwear and pants thrown carelessly from his dresser drawers, but no Laurel.

With a heavy sigh, I check my own bedroom. My bedroom is void of my little gremlin, but little giggles are heard from my bathroom. I walk in and find she has emptied my makeup drawer. All the little containers and tubes are now lined up neatly on the edge of the bathtub.

Lesson learned, I will keep my bedroom door locked. As for Ian's room, his clothes will just have to fend for themselves.