Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Summer TV/Computer Rules for Kids

So Phoebe got out of school last Friday and we're dealing with summer vacation! I have to say I prefer it to getting her up in the morning and dealing with homework after school. She's at her grandparents' right now, but I told her when she gets back home, the following are the rules around TV and the computer:

1. No TV during the day. She can watch some shows together with us as a family in the evening. I figured if it was a rainy day, I might give her a reprieve from this rule, but it's been a pretty dry summer so far.

2. She can only be on the computer for 1/2 hour a day and it will be timed with the kitchen timer.

I know this will be similar to the rules at her grandparents' house as they don't allow the kids to play with the computer at all and the TV is not watched in the daytime when it's nice outside. Kids must be outside playing.

If you have children, did you impose rules for TV and the computer for the summer? Any other rules I should think of?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Bicycle Ride

I don't know if I've ever mentioned it before, but DH and I bought bicycles this spring so we can ride around with Phoebe. We want to get a trailer that can seat the two boys, but haven't gotten around to that yet. So for now, we've been trading off who's riding bikes with Phoebe and who's pushing the baby stroller. Part of the reason we decided to do this is that our neighborhood is limited in being able to ride a bike. You can, but it's a dead end street with a cul-de-sac at the end. If you go out of our neighborhood just a little bit, but on a busy road, you can get to lots of other neighborhoods and have a great ride. I'm not comfortable letting Phoebe do this on her own yet, but very comfortable doing it with her and a double-stroller.

DH came up with a great idea for last night, since we are child-free for the moment and trying to make the most of it. We rode our bikes to our friends' house in the next town. It took us 20 minutes to get there and 3 hills (!!!), we jumped in their pool and hung out with our friends for a little while and then rode our bikes home. My legs were jello by the time we got home, but today they feel great! It was so much fun.

Then we ate cheese nachos and caught up on the latest episode of TrueBlood. The more seasons they have the more I love the actors they picked for the main characters, but the more I'm having issues with how the story line is deviating from the books. I love the books so much and kind of buy into their storyline. Like last night I was getting frustrated with them kind of making it sound like werewolves are created from bites. In the book they can be, but they won't be full werewolves. The only way to be a full-blooded werewolf is genetic. Your parents have to be and it's only the first born that ends up with the ability. I guess I need to try to treat it as a separate story altogether, but it's really really hard.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Child-Free Morning #1

The kids are all at their grandparents until the Fourth of July weekend. Phoebe finished third grade last Friday and today is our first day waking up without the kids. I'm missing them already, but I'm sure the trip is good for them. They will have so much fun swimming, playing in the sandbox and going on the swings and slide. We're going to focus on getting some work done and having some quiet time together.

I do have some good news! Liam is finally pulling himself up to sit!!!! It's taken him forever, but thankfully now the two things that made me concerned lately he is now doing: holding his own sippy cup and pulling himself to sit. He's going to have three weeks off physical therapy because of this trip to the grandparents', so I'm glad he's making some good progress.

Update: BTW, let me make it clear that the all-knowing, all-powerful Aunt Niki is with them, so they are not alone with their grandparents. I don't think they could handle two toddlers on their own. What's also nice is that Niki is there for all their physical therapy appointments with me and she'll be continuing to work with them on their therapy during these three weeks. And I think Tommy is on the verge of walking. He's getting really good at cruising furniture and crossing to the next piece of furniture as he cruises.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Memorial Day - and Cake Pics!

We spent the day after the boys official birthday at my in-laws for the usual Memorial Day picnic. It's on Sunday instead of Monday, so we don't all have to drive through Jersey traffic with people trying to go home that evening.

Here's Phoebe in her favorite place, the pool! That girl really knows how to swim! That day she showed me her shallow dive that DH taught her, the kind swimmers do off blocks at the beginning of a race. It was amazing!

And here's what you've all been waiting for! My niece made the boys their cakes. We all ate the Elmo cake and the boys each had their own individual cake to dig into. They came out fabulous and they really loved them.

Here's the boys and their daddy waiting for cake!

We all sang Happy Birthday! Here's the boys with Dad and Sis and their cute little new bibs!

Tommy stood in front of his cake to eat it, but Liam was so tired (another no afternoon nap day!), that he just wanted to sit in my lap and eat his cake.

Of course you want the "after" shot. Here's Liam with Aunt Niki. He really loves her, ya think?

And here's Tommy with the original Tommy (his granddad, Tommy is the third). Tommy's not that messy. I don't think he wanted to miss a single bit of cake.

Then we all took a dip in the pool. It was a hot day and this felt great!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Boys First Birthday!!!

Here are the pics from their actual birthday. I will warn you there was no actual birthday cake on their birthday. That came the next day at the usual Memorial Day barbeque at my in-laws.

BTW, something weird did happen on their first birthday. I did wake up out of the blue at 2AM, a few minutes before they were born the year before. I went and peeked on them and then took pics as soon as they woke up. Here's the boys waking up officially a year old!

Tommy (Mr. I-Love-To-Pull-To-Stand)

Liam's first moments were cranky, but he was very happy hiding behind a Cheerio at breakfast.

Here's the boys all dressed up and places to go!

Here's Phoebe getting in on the birthday love. Boy has her life changed in the last year!

Here's the boys enjoying some jazz music at the vineyard up the street from our house. Do you think they will take an afternoon nap here?

Here's a plug for our friend's jazz trio. Phoebe took this photo.

Phoebe's artistic creation of the day

Oh crazy, Mommy! What makes you think I would take a nap when there is so much fun here!

Liam's tired too, but he just wants some Aunt Niki love!

It was a beautiful afternoon at the vineyard. After the guys finished playing, we went back to the piano player's house and we all had a barbeque. We brought barbeque chicken (some using the Buffalo Wild Wings "Asian Zinger" sauce), my famous roasted vegetable quinoa salad and my husband's favorite cucumber salad. We brought a carrot cake and our friends had also bought a chocolate cake, but the boys never got to blow out candles this day as they had no afternoon nap. They were tired very quickly and we brought the pack n plays so they could sleep in their basement den while we relaxed and had a glass of wine. BTW, the boys need two pack n plays when they sleep away from home, as they'll just sleep or fight if they are in the same one. So we just bring two different ones and they sleep just fine. We're working on making them as flexible as Phoebe is. They were getting too used to sleeping only in their cribs at home.

All in all their birthday was a beautiful, relaxing day.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

First Haircut

I know I still owe everyone some pics of their first birthday weekend. We have some pics from the vineyard as well as them waking up that morning as well as the cake the next day and being in the pool. However, the boys had their first haircut yesterday as it was getting very very long. I love Tommy's, but I'm not crazy about Liam's. I couldn't get into with my hair stylist to have her do it, but I'll try again for next time. So we just went to the local barber and it was fine, but it was two different women who did it. The lady that did Tommy was confident (even though my marshmallow cried) and it's exactly what I wanted, nice and short. But she didn't give us a lock of his hair, so I took it off the chair later. The lady that did Liam (who I held for this event) was not as confident and was afraid to straighten up his hair around his ears and on the back of his neck, so I finished that at home while he was eating. I know that sounds gross and I'm all against touching hair when you are near food, but he was really happy and didn't mind what I was doing when he was eating chunks of cantelope. Here's the before and after pics.



Saturday, June 05, 2010

Weekend!!! Ahhh!

I'm about to go jump in the shower. I got all sweaty this morning as we took a long walk with the boys and Leo and Phoebe rode their bikes. For breakfast the boys downed a 1/2 a banana each and some french toast sticks. Liam is enjoying his vanilla pediasure, but I'm sure he'd enjoy chocolate better. When I went to Bjs for our monthly trip there, they didn't seem to carry anything but vanilla or strawberry pediasure. They were out of motrin too, as there's been a big recall of that recently. Not a good time for that to happen when Liam has his molars coming in and we are completely out.

This week was crazy at work and trying to juggle taking the boys for their doctor's visit. I realize now that I'll need to take them for their blood work on Monday, as I forgot this morning. Next week is going to be crazy with Niki working the polls in NJ next Tuesday, so she'll be gone from Monday through Wednesday. I'm trying to get the boys into the day care at my work for Tuesday and Wednesday, but they are wait listed right now. We'll see how that goes. And Phoebe's school year is done on the 18th, but next Friday they have a picnic at the school that the parents are invited. I've gone every other year, now I have to figure out how to juggle it with everything else.

Don't get me wrong, I hope I don't sound depressing. I'm actually quite happy and I know next week will be fun. I'm just trying to figure out how to juggle everything with work and considering the economy, that's a good problem to have. I'm going to work on cleaning out the pics from the boys birthday weekend, so hopefully, I'll get to post some later today. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

One Year Doctor Update

The boys had their one year check with the pediatrician yesterday morning. All went well, but the boys have hand, foot and mouth, which is a virus, so there's no real treatment. They both had fevers over the weekend and Liam was the first to have a fever so I assumed it was his teeth. Liam is getting his molars right now, and I remember Phoebe got a fever when her molars came in, but then Tommy got a fever two days later and then yesterday morning I noticed they both had a rash on their arms and legs. The doctor also pointed out that Tommy had a sore on his one pinky finger and they had a sore or two in their mouths. Even though their contagious, the doctor said there was no need to quarantine them from other children, as it's so common these days most kids they come in contact with will have it already.

Here's the boys stats at one year:

Tommy - 21 lbs 13 oz (9.89 kg) and 31 3/4 inches (80.6 cm)

Liam - 17 lbs 9 oz (7.9 kg) and 30 inches (76.2 cm)

The ped is concerned with Liam's weight. He's apparently not on the growth chart anymore. I'm sure the stomach bug they had the other week didn't help. She wants Liam to have 1 bottle of pediasure added to his diet every day and she wants to see him in a month. I was just comparing Tommy's weight and Liam weighs about what Tommy weighed at 6 months. Poor kid.

It's amazing how much they can do right now. Both boys only like table food, they are off bottles and onto sippy cups, and are now drinking whole milk instead of formula. They do still take two naps a day, morning and afternoon and go to bed around 7 PM. They will both take steps if we are holding their hands.

Tommy can pull himself to stand and is starting to cruise furniture. He can climb stairs. He was clapping, but he seems to have stopped that right now to favor the standing and trying to walk thing. He loves to babble and sometimes I think he means something when he sees me walk in the room and he goes "mamamamama". He still only has 4 teeth in the front, but I know more must be coming as the drool coming out of this mouth is unbelievable. Tommy is still signed up with Early Intervention for one physical therapy session per month.

Liam still will not pull himself to sit, but he does love to commando crawl around and can go many places that way. He loves waving to people to say hi or bye. He babbles, but his sounds very sing-song it is so cute. He has 8 teeth in the front and is now getting his molars in. Because Liam is a bit behind on his gross motor skills, he's still having weekly PT sessions. Because he doesn't like to cross the midline with his hands, won't hold his own sippy cup (he moans when he's thirsty until you hold it up for him) and won't tear at food with those ton of teeth he has, he's going to be starting occupational therapy 2x a month in the middle of June. I don't stress too much about Liam's little delays in development. I just keep warning him that he will see more people until he does the things he's supposed to be doing, LOL!

I'll be pulling pics from the weekend soon to see if I have some good one year pics to post.