Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Proud of His Art Work

One of the twins play groups was here at our house today. I put out construction paper, crayons and stickers for this event. Surprisingly not a whole lot of interest went into this. But, Liam enjoyed it, especially with the help of his friend for the moment, Leslie. I hope Leslie didn't mind too much having to help him peel the backings off of what looks like hundreds of stickers. All I know is that he sure was proud of it. When I asked to take his photo with his art work he was quick to pose and was full of prideful laughter.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Dinner and a New Server at the Table

Tonight's dinner was an Almond-Crusted Chicken, recipe out of May's issue of BHG, served with wilted spinach, parmasean flat bread, and cheesy rice (the back up for the kids). It was an easy meal and pretty good, a definite repeat recipe. Best of all is that we had a new server at the table. Aside from the fact that he thought it was ok to eat from the serving spoon, Aidan did a great job helping serve cheesy rice for everyone. I know what you're thinking, he is 4 1/2, definitely not a baby anymore, he can help with these kinds of things. We're guilty of doing everything for them, except for bringing their dishes to the kitchen after a meal. So, this was a big deal for our household and he was so proud.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Baking, Games, and Play-Doh

The days have been a bit long here since we've been homebound with Aidan recovering from pnuemonia. The past couple of days we've read lots of books including some I Spy's which Aidan really enjoys, watched Thomas and the Magic Railroad and have played lots of trains. Today Max decided to take the twins out to play and have lunch while I stayed home with Aidan. No sense in having 3 stir crazy kids at home.

Aidan watched a little more Thomas while I baked this fabulous Ba-Ba Banana Bread from Real Food for Healthy Kids. Thanks to Leslie, who shared this recipe with us. The boys just love it and it's healthy too, made with wheat flour. Since this recipe is such a hit, I'm thinking of buying this cookbook for more wholesome kid friendly recipes.

After baking Aidan and I played some games including Word Dominoes. If you don't have this game it's a must have for your 4-7 yr olds. It's fun and gets your kids spelling 3 and 4 letter words. We played several rounds before I sent Aidan to take a nap. Honestly, he really did not want to stop playing. An educational game that is that much fun, in my book is a winner.

Nap time was over, Liam and Miles were now home. Aidan joined them in a little Play-Doh Play. It's so nice to see them enjoy in the same activities and makes it a little easier on mommy and daddy. Now if they'd all learn to clean up, I'd be thrilled. This is an area we need to focus some more energy on. They do help, just not consistently and it takes lots of encouragement to complete the tasks.

Friday, April 24, 2009

The Things We Do

Sometimes the things we do for our kids is just pure craziness or sometimes crazy making. Today Aidan dropped his Salty ( Thomas train character) in the grocery store, causing a little chip on the yellow paint. Well, Aidan was so sad about this and of course it just pulled on my heart to see him that sad. So, as soon as we got home, I started rummaging through all my craft supplies (and there's alot) to find the right shade of yellow paint to fix that little chip in Salty. About half an hour later, Salty was all touched up, with no evidence of his previous owie, and Aidan's sad face was now a smile. Crazy making it was searching through all my supplies and pure craziness it is that I would actually do this. The things we do to see our children happy. ( I wish I had taken a before picture of Salty, but anyways you get the idea).

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Easter Again

Since most of of the twins playgroup friends were going to be celebrating Easter with family, we decided to celebrate as a group, a week later. We celebrated at Mari's new fabulous house with a potluck, easter egg hunt and an oh so fun jumpy house. Originally we thought we weren't going to be able to make it, as we also attended a wedding that afternoon. I'm so glad we decided to risk it and do both. Everyone had a great time, even Aidan who is often extremely shy in large groups (making progress all the time). Aidan even announced he had 2 new friends, Lincoln and Cole, and wanted to know if they could come over next week. Miles and Liam played, and only had a few tears (hooray). It was a fun filled day, just wish we had applied more sunblock because we all ended up with a bit of a sun kiss.

The Easter Egg Hunters

The Mamas

Sweet Treats

Miles finds an egg

Liam's loot

Aidan finds the Biggie!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Part Of The Family

Our family includes two kitty cats, one of which the boys seem to grow fonder of everyday. Jeremy our black and white kitty, he's almost like having a dog. He likes to be rough housed on, and keeps coming back for more. Somtimes he'll follow you around the house from room to room as if he were keeping you company. Nicest of all, is that he goes to bed everynight with Aidan. Aidan gets read to every night before bed and Jeremy joins him in bed during this time. Later when I peek in the room to make sure Aidan is ok, I'll often find Jeremy curled up on the bed with him. It sure is the sweetest site. There's been times when I've overheard Aidan telling Jeremy, "I love you, Jeremy" Liam and Miles are also fond of Jeremy, they play and tug on him and somtimes just sit with him. Liam loves to help brush him. So he really is part of the family.

What saddens me, is that Miles is having allergy problems (so we think). I'll be taking him in next week for allergy testing. It may very well be that he is allergic to the cats, or I may just be jumping the gun here. Regardless, I can't help but worry about the possibility. What will we do if this happens? Will we make the kitties outdoor kitties. I know Jeremy would love to be outdoors. I worry about the racoons and other wildlife, anything could happen to our kitties. The idea of having to find new homes for them is heartbreaking. We'll just have to wait and see.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A Sweet Thing to Share

Aidan has been a bit more challenging these days, small lies to stay out trouble, teasing his brothers, and just a bit of defiance that can be really annoying. I know he's finding his independence and realizing he's the older brother, testing the waters as to just how much can he get away with. Despite all this, he's also very sweet. He brought a smile to my face tonight with this conversation:

Aidan, naked out of the shower
Me: Come here string bean so we can get your jammie jams on.
Aidan: Did you call me string bean.
Me: Yes, look how thin you are, like a string bean.
Aidan: Well you are a sugar plum berry.
Me: What?
Aidan: Yeah, you are a sweet sugar plum berry.
Me: Thanks Aidan, that makes me happy.

So I'll take that as a compliment from my Aidan...he thinks his mommy is sweet.

Some Lessons Are Hard To Teach

Some lessons in life are hard to teach, and we all know some folks who just never got them. How do I teach my children to be humble, to have integrity, and believe in themselves? How do I teach them that they don't need the acceptance or approval of others to build their self esteem nor to give them the drive to succeed? That ambition and motivation should come from within. Do what you want and who cares what others think. And how lying is not only unacceptable but unattractive. Especially the kind of lying that is done to impress others.

Right now, the twins, age 2, seem a little young to understand all this, but Aidan who is 4 1/2 now is really starting to tread in this area. At this age, the lying is small right now. They are the kind of lies that are told to stay out of trouble. "No mommy, I don't know why my little brother is crying." What I'm concerned about is the bigger lies that may come later. The kind of lies that are told to impress others and increase a need for self importance. These kinds of lies are not only laughable but really demonstrate lack of integrity. How do I make my young child understand that if you lie like this, at some point you are no longer trustworthy, you will not be taken serious and you may also lose friendships.

Aidan is an intelligent, gentle soul who is also extremely shy. He is accepted by his peers for the most part, but what I've also observed is he participates in play/activities with others to be part of the group when I know he would never play that on his own. How do I make him understand that he just needs to be himself and do what he likes and others will join. What I really want him to do as I want all my children to do, is to march to the beat of his own drum and be proud of it!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

A Happy Easter Weekend

It was a nice Easter weekend here at the Rocha residence. The boy's Uncle Jess and Abuelito (my brother and dad) came over Sat afternoon and stayed the night. We haven't seen abuelito in over a year now, so it was nice to see the boys spend time with him. Miles had no hesitation in going over and sitting in his lap as soon as he arrived, it sure was a sweet sight. And as usual, Uncle Jess showed up with arms full of toys, a bulldozer wagon to ride, a motorcycle, a golf set and rocket baseball set. Jess being as sporty as he is, buys them toys I would never think of getting them, and of course they are always thrilled.

Max and I made a nice dinner Sat (halibut and artichoke hearts in a saffron broth, chicken and bellpepper saute, mashed potatoes, sauted spinach, and a parmasean flat bread. Dinner was followed by egg decorating for the Easter Bunny and then time for bed for the boys. The adults stayed up late just having good conversation while Abuelito reminisced down memory lane.

Easter, Liam was the first to find the easter basket and of course quickly found the chocolate bunny in his basket. The basket was mostly toys but I felt compelled to add a chocolate bunny ( what's an easter basket without a chocolate bunny?) so I picked up some small dove chocolate bunnies. And, instead of fighting the boys over waiting til after breakfast to eat their bunnies, I just let them go at it.....sure was a very special treat for them.

Easter was spent hanging out playing with the new bubbles, and toys. Sorry to say, mommy did not get it together to have an easter egg hunt. Aidan and I walked over to the neighbors to deliver easter presents, an orchid for Auntie Fran, Jelley Beans for the Cody-Carisses and candies for Becca. Max grilled some yummy ribeye steaks that we served with grilled mushrooms, green salad and a loaf of french bread. It was a very simple but satisfying meal. All in all, it was a very low key but pleasure filled weekend.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Old Friends, New Families

This past Saturday we got together with some old friends (prekids friends) we haven't seen in quite awhile. Prekids, we were the closest of friends, 1 of them was actually at the birth of my first son but for many reasons we've not been able to spend time together as we use to. For reasons such as, geographical ( we've all moved some as far as Argentina), busy schedules (juggling work, kids, and other obligations)and just truthfully sometimes too tired to make the extra effort. Prekids we always had dinner parties , celebrated holidays together and had great times together. So with Amelia and Chris visiting and their new baby, it was the perfect reason for us to get together and celebrate. I'm so happy we did so. It was just like old times, it felt like we picked up right where we left off just as good friends do so. The only difference was there were 8 kids, yes 8 kids included this time and one more on the way (NO not me!). And even with all the kids, it was still a really nice time. Made me think I really should put forth more effort into getting us together much more often. I'm now looking forward to the next time we see each other. Don't you have old friends you want to reconnect with?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Twilight Saga

So I finished reading the entire series of Twilight and have now finished going back and reviewing some of my favorite parts. Twilight is not typically the type of book I would read, teen vampire love story and all, but this was surely riveting. So much so that I stayed up several nights til 3am because I just couldn't put it down. I kept telling myself I'll put it down as soon as the story line starts to slow down, it just doesn't seem to do so. And now that I'm done with the series, I have to say I feel empty, saddened that it's over. What I did hear, is there's another one coming out that's part of the series, Edward's point of view. Now I just have to wait patiently for it's release. In the meantime, I guess I'll just have to see the movie. Like so many other movies I've seen after reading the books, I'm afraid I'm going to be disappointed. For now, that will have to do. So if you're looking for something fun and enthralling to read, I suggest you read the Twilight series.

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