Monday, March 29, 2010

The Bonnell's Come Calling

My sweet little nephew, Gabriel came over to play last week, his first time since he's been out of his mommy's belly:) Oh yeah, my brother and sis-n-law came with him:) The sun was out, the sky was blue, and the grass was in dire need of cutting. We kicked a ball around, swung on the swings and played on the fort.

What a great time for the boys to spend together, with no big sister/cousin around:)

It does appear that Gavin is planning on clobbering Gabe with that 2 x 4, but he didn't, I promise:) Now I can't promise he didn't think about it just never know what goes on in that little (whoops, we all know it's large) head.

See, the large chunk of potentially dangerous wood is on the ground...

Fun Times! No blood was shed during the making of this blog post or during the events pictured. Just in case you were wondering... I know that some of you were:)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Feelin' Like a Princess

All of us ladies have those times when we need to feel beautiful, like a princess or even better, a queen:) Our little Kyla had the opportunity this weekend to make believe that she was a princess. This Saturday, my mom and I took Kyla to David's Bridal to try on her dress for my cousin Kelly's wedding taking place in June. She asked if Kyla would share in her day by being the flower girl. Kyla is ecstatic of course and was more than ready to try on her special dress. (the head piece and shoes are just random ones that Grandma Lynne picked out for the full princess effect)

Princess Kyla - with just a hint of attitude

Princess Kyla - With a little bit more attitude

The perfect fit!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

It's just a boy thing

It's got to be a boy thing.

We are trying something new nowadays. Gavin and Kyla are getting old enough (read responsible enough) to play outside by themselves. They must be within the view area of our sliding glass door though. That's the rule, no wishy washiness there. I am constantly peeking out our sliding glass door or bathroom window, checking on their well being and decision making skills as it pertains to following the rules. I'm getting pretty darn sneaky about it.

During one such sneaking period, I spied my boy doing something dangerous and unthinkable. Well, unthinkable to me at least. He had turned his jeep upside down and proceeded to climb upon it, taunting gravity and all sorts of other physics laws. Now, if this was Kyla, I don't think the idea would have crossed her careful little mind. But Gavin, well lets just say that I'm not terribly surprised:)

Hmm, Upside down Jeep...

Climbing Structure? Why not?!

Oh Oh, check out the angle of the jeep...

Opps, Where did he go?

Ahhhhh, there he is.
Safe and sound, and smarter for the experience, right?

Guess not...

Ack! I've been caught, wait, he's been caught:)

Monday, March 22, 2010

No More Diapers Here!

He's finally done it, Gavin is potty trained! I was sure he was ready last summer (at age 2.5) so we started the roller coaster adventure of potty training. After two weeks of gross and random pools of pee and mountains of poop on my flooring, he got the flu and we scurried back into the security of diapers and I glumly admitted defeat. He just wasn't ready. Now, I have to explain the reasons for my confusion here. Kyla potty trained by her second birthday, in an easy week of sticker treats and few accidents. I, of course, assumed it was due to my amazing parenting. Hmmm, turns out it may have just been her:)

After Thanksgiving, I was sure he was ready, so we tried again. We bought the expensive and "proven to work" toilet, bought the favorite character undies, and the "cars" pull ups. We celebrated, gave treats (marshmallows), and soon began bribing, all to no avail. He had figured out the pee thing as long as I reminded him every hour, every day, every week! But the poop thing, yeah, not so great. He would poop in his diaper, his pull up, his undies, or on his bed (Seriously!). He would go and hide to go poop, and then come back and tell me with a snarky little voice that he needed changed. We were down to a fierce battle of wills, mine verses Gavin's. It was unbelievable, his will was like iron as was mine. We were at a standoff. By mid-January, I had had enough, I was done, no more for me! On Gavin's birthday weekend, I desperately pleaded with Chad, "Please, Please, Please take over potty training this weekend, I just can't do it anymore!" He flippantly replied, "I'll have him trained by the end of the weekend." My little heart was grateful for his willingness to partake in this fun parenting stage, my heart was also giddy with the knowledge of his defeat, potty train Gav in a weekend, Yeah right!!

I'm humbled to say that it worked. Chad laid down the law, Gav couldn't leave the kitchen (the only room with linoleum for easy clean up) nor could he play with all his new toys until he had pooped in his potty. Oh, and he couldn't have any clothes on, not even his cool undies. No exceptions, do not pass go. The kicker was the new bike. Gav wanted to ride his new bike so badly, but little boys can't ride their bike outside in the winter naked. The first day was a bit trying for my logical husband, but the second day was a success.

He's had accidents since, of course, but has been very successful since that long ago weekend in February:) We still use pull ups at nap time and bedtime, I'm just not ready for that battle yet. Most of the time he's dry anyway when he wakes up.

So no more diapers here. This is now officially a diaper free zone!

I shudder even as I pass that dreaded diaper isle at the store. "No more," I say, "No more!"

Sunday, March 21, 2010

What a week! This was the week of the family visitors. Chad's brother flew in from Colorado, My brother and his family drove down from the Tri-Cities, and Kristel and her little one were down from Alberta!

Last weekend, we all camped out at the Kettlehake Commune, AKA Chad's mom's house, and stayed up entirely too late visiting with Todd and Lisa. We talked, ate, played, ate some more, and finished off with talking:) The kids literally dropped to the floor where they were playing and fell asleep:)

On Friday, the Riddles/Lees converged on our house for a rousing dinner of breakfast:) We scrounged up more seating and made enough food for a small country for the 12 of us. The boys told stories to fill Trina, Michele, and Lisa in on their childhood, it's truly amazing what the boys got away with their parents none the wiser:). Plans regarding pen-pals where made, dramatic wrestling matches ensued, and a three and a half pound cake was devoured. The night was officially ended with Gavin singing. You really had to be there to fully appreciate the timing of this comical incident.

Take one...
Here's a keeper:)
Ending with a bang!
Fun Facts:
Great memories were made
Todd has never changed a diaper
Todd and Lisa may need to sleep for a week to recover
It's a miracle all five boys survived childhood
We can fit twelve people in our dinning room
Gavin now is a baby dinosaur named Louie
We've started making plans for our trip to Colorado in 2011
Lisa is supremely strong - miraculously proven by her carting
both of my large children through an indoor jungle gym
Hannah wants to visit China
Stories about mailboxes blowing up are funny no matter how many times you hear it
Kyla and Gavin love their Uncle Todd and Miss Lisa!
We had a wonderful time!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

As the Sun Sets on Hawaii...

As our trip came to an end, we squished a couple more things in. We drove to the Iao Valley and enjoyed the view (with the vog) and the history. Found another black/red sand beach and enjoyed the music of the waves:)

Our last stop was the Maui Tropical Plantation. We picked up some pineapple to share here at home and explored the gardens.

And now we are back. Back to the cold and wet of Oregon. Back to work and routines and parenting. It's been a bit rough this past week as we settle back into our normal"ish" routines. The kids are a bit off, to be expected after two whole weeks with grandparents:), as are Chad and I. Wait, I have to make dinner, again? Who's in charge of the kids? How I miss that evening soak in the hot tub:)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Luaus and Paddle Boards...

Chad and I were so blessed to do so many things while we were visiting Hawaii. We rented snorkel gear and paddle boards, enjoyed a Luau, went on two snorkeling/whale watching cruises (another long story there), checked out the local aquarium, accidentally stumbled upon the lava fields:), swam with sea turtles, and saw to many whales to count!

On our first snorkeling cruise, we went with the eco-friendly Pacific Whale Foundation. The cruise was nice, the snorkeling great, but the whale info and sightings was spectacular! We saw whales (up close and personal) do full breaches, saw lots of babies and their mommas and watched a mom and baby for more than ten minutes as the mom taught her baby how to flap it's fins. It was amazing!

The Fire Dance - Luau
Paddle Boards
Ready for more snorkeling
The Lava Field
We said goodbye to Kristel and Brent halfway through our trip and then had to explore/relax on our own:) Tough life, I know:)