Sunday, June 21, 2009

First Trip to the Dentist

I am ashamed of myself, but until now, my children had never been to a dentist. Considering I was ten or eleven before I ever went, and Ox is only five, I wasn't feeling totally irresponsible. I think I have been worried about the logistics of a visit, insofar as I have worried about it at all. I took Baby in for his two-year appointment and the doctor suggested taking him in to get him used to the experience and to get a fluoride treatment to protect against cavities. Seemed like a good idea to me, too, and as I was exiting our doctor's office, I beheld a pediatric dentist right across the hall. Imagine! It seemed like a sign, so I walked right in and made the appointment.

Turns out, those hygienists really knock themselves out trying to help your children have a good time, all things considered. It was sort of like a birthday party, with favors and balloons and everything. I think the key is to go to someone who specializes in children's teeth. The dentist was surprised that Ox's mouth was so mature, but I told him he had his first two teeth come in at five weeks and then he understood. Also, it turns out both boys have at some point broken their roots above their front top teeth and therefore will probably lose those before the front bottoms as is usual. He asked me if they had had any big falls in their lives that might have caused this and I asked him if he was joking. Anyway, everyone is perfect, no cavities, and looking forward to December, when we get to go again.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Science Guy

Ox says he wants to be a scientist and an artist (in the evenings) when he grows up. He is always asking to do science experiments. My friend Tiffany loaned us this very cool book . . . great pictures and clear explanations for people like me who would otherwise explain many scientific concepts with a thoughtful pause and, "It's magic!"

In this first one, we made a diver out of a piece of aluminum, a paper clip, some plastitack and a bendy straw (aren't we just like MacGyver?), then put him in a bottle of water. When you squeeze the bottle, the diver magically drops to the bottom of the bottle. Fascinating. I forget why. Magic, I guess.

Then, we did another one where we made bubbles with homemade solution and bubble wands, made out of coat hangers and string wrapped around. This was a hit with all three kids. I now know that adding glycerin or corn syrup to regular soap relaxes the water's surface tension and makes it more elastic, thereby creating a bubble.


Ox and Gigi have been doing gymnastics for awhile at the rec center here. They have loved it. I finally remembered the camera on the last day. Unfortunately, Gigi was out of sorts this day and had a tough time getting into it. Usually, she is much happier than this to be tumbling and hand-standing for the world. Even though Baby was not enrolled in the classes, he made good use of the equipment and even demanded his own award ceremony at the end.

Now she's getting the hang of it.

Everyone got gold medals at the end. Except Baby, who stole someone's and jumped up on the podium to take his applause.

We could not have done this without Miss Ashley. Some people have magical powers with children, especially children who are otherwise slow to warm up to new situations. Gigi was nearly in tears at the beginning of every class, and each time, (except this fluke day) Ashley was able to distract her almost instantly and draw her into the group. It meant a lot to me. And it helped Gigi have a great time. She put all her new skills into practice at the park and now she is a little monkey on the bars.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Desert Vacation

The kids and I met Dirk's brother's family in Indio for a vacation at their time share there. It was so generous of them to invite us, and we had the best time. There was a water park, and my children were suddenly interested in swimming, and how. It was wonderfully rejunvenating. All I need for stress relief is a lazy river! I stayed four days, Dirk came out for one full day, because he was busy with all that boring job stuff. Thanks, Doug and Shannon!

This is the first time Ox has showed interest in truly swimming on his own. I think I have his cousins to thank for that. He and Rebekah were inseparable. He was so proud of himself and said to me, "I LOVE the lazy river! It teaches you to swim because it just carries you right along!"

Doug and Abbigail

I made Gigi wear a life jacket. She reluctantly agreed in the end, but only because it was pink.

This was Baby and me most of the time. We couldn't help it! Everytime we would get on the lazy river, he would snuggle in and fall asleep instantly and I hated to wake him, especially since he NEVER does this sort of thing in real life. Plus, it was quite relaxing. I guess I am getting old, because I would yell at Dirk if he ever splashed me trying to get to the nephews.

Our posh room in the fancy condo.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Friday, June 5, 2009

Sleeping Troubles

Gigi has been the strangest sleeper lately. She becomes hysterical as she falls asleep, because she is afraid she will forget everything during the night. Things like, if I promised to paint her nails the next day, or if we are going to preschool, etc. My friend suggested I write things down that she is worried about during our bedtime routine so she wouldn't worry so much. She can draw pictures if she thinks of something when I am not around. It hasn't been perfect, and she still has some weirdness some nights, but I have to say it has become a lot better. The white board got filled up, so I told her it was time to clean it, and she freaked out. We took this picture so we would remember everything we were trying to remember. This obsession has leaked into our whole day, with her asking me at least one thousand times, "Can you remember that?" throughout the day, about the most random things. "I love cheese and chips . . . can you remember that?" "This is a 'c' and I can write it myself . . . can you remember that?" And on, and on.

I took this picture this morning. She was mad at me for something and said, "I'm not going to make you anything special for your birthday and I'm just going to be Daddy's friend forever and ever . . . and can you remember that?" I told her I would rather not remember that, and she became so furious that she hid in my closet, took off her clothes, and distracted herself from her troubles by breaking into my jewelry box. This kid is such a crackup. She mystifies me, and she keeps me on my toes.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Park Pix

We seem to live at the San Diego parks. There are three within walking distance, and several that we drive to. This is one of the kids' favorites.

"Mommy! Mommmeeeeeee! Wanna swing! Mommmmmeeeeeee!!!!!"

My cutie little half-pint thinks he needs a helmet to ride his stroller. Love that kid.

And these two are best friends. Some days I feel so blessed. Mostly when I first wake up in the morning. Assuming I wake up after 6:30 a.m. Either way, by 4 p.m., I am often ready to lock myself in a closet. But aren't they adorable?

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

It's Official

Dirk was sworn in as an attorney today. I didn't get a picture of the ceremony (long story), but here is our family right after, and my children with the stir-crazies after that. Yes. I let them behave this way in public. Turns out, kids really don't care about preserving one's ethics as a lawyer, and keeping perspective in the job market, and whatever else the fancy-robed judge-types talked about long after I had to take Screaming Child outside. They did great, though. It wasn't even as long as sacrament meeting, so they were well prepared.

We are all so proud of you, Dirk! Well done.