Friday, July 24, 2015

Bowling With Friends

We've been so busy getting ready for our trip this week that we haven't had any time to hang out with our friends. So today we made some time to go bowling with our buddies, Colin and Wyatt.

The kids had a great time and loved seeing each other and I was happy to have some time off from worrying about our upcoming trip. They bowled two games and then spent a little time in the game room pretending to play video games.

Here are a few video's from today:

Near the end of the second round Colin wanted to try bowling without the gutter guards. He missed the first couple of times, but I believe by his third try he was knocking down pins! Then, Harper decided he'd try to bowl without the help of the ramp and on his first try he got a spare! He was super excited about it and decided he liked bowling without a ramp.

When Dakota wasn't having her turn bowling she was chasing Colin and Wyatt around being a "weirdo". They laughed and played and had a great time!

Final Swim Lesson

On Thursday Harper had his final swim lesson; for awhile at least. (Dakota hasn't participated for most of this final session so Harper has been having private lessons. Things could be worse.)

I was thrilled to see that his coach moved him from level 3 to level 4! That means my boy is making some terrific progress! He was so proud when he came out of his lesson and he asked me if I'd seen him dive from the side and jump in to the teacher. Of course I'd been watching and I just can't believe how far he's come.

We're going to take a little break from lessons until after school starts. Our new schedules will be quite busy and I don't want to overwhelm the kids with school during the day and activities in the evening right away. I think we'll ease into school and then see if we can handle other activities.

Harper Meets the Dentist

Harper had his very first dentist appointment this week. 

I did my best to explain what would happen and he didn't seem phased about any of it. He was such a big boy and jumped right in the chair and did exactly as they asked him to.

The assistant showed him each of the dentist's tools and did her best to keep him informed about what they were doing. (He didn't see the hygienist this time, just the dentist.) The only time he showed any emotion was when they used the suction. It's kind of loud and he wasn't prepared for the noise, so he jumped. The next time she went to use it he told her he was a little scared and she told him she just wouldn't use it, and he was just fine.

When he was finished they gave him a new toothbrush and a special coin for the bouncy ball machine they keep hidden. It's funny to think Zoe and Landon used to look forward to getting those coins! Because Dakota did such a great job she also got a toothbrush and a bouncy ball. I was really surprised that we were able to get through the whole appointment without tears from anyone!

Oh, and Harper's teeth are in great condition except the dentist did inform me that he grinds his teeth. He said it was very typical of kids his age and we'd just have to keep an eye on it when he got his adult teeth.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Tonight at the Pool

It's been very hot here the past couple of days and after working hard all day we headed down to the pool for a little bit. Harper is now swimming without his floaties more often than not (he never put them on today) and Dakota is doing more and more with hers on. I was trying to convince Harper to jump into the deep end to me today and he just couldn't work up the courage until Tony offered to hold his hand and jump in with him. It did the trick and after a few times holding hands, he began doing it on his own! 

He must have jumped into the pool a half dozen times and somewhere in there he decided he could also jump in, touch the bottom and then swim from his jump in point to the steps on the other wall. He just never ceases to amaze me! It's so cool to watch him grow more confident.

Dakota loved showing us how she could float on her back and her tummy with her floats on. She's getting more and more brave every day. For about a half hour before we left the pool tonight we were playing sharks and both kids were jumping in to me and I was getting them. For a second I forgot I had Dakota and not Harper in my arms and I tossed her over to the steps and she went completely under water for a second. I thought I'd probably just ruined her day once I realized what I'd done, but she came up and just started jabbering away like nothing had happened! Then, to see what happened, I did it again and again, she just came up ready to keep on playing. It was awesome! Before we left Dakota got the idea to take her floats off and play without them. She practiced "swimming" a little but it only lasted about 5 minutes and then the lifeguard blew the whistle and it was time to go home. I think the swim lessons and family pool time is really giving both kids a huge confidence boost in the water and I'll bet Harper will be full on swimming by the end of summer.

Sleeping In Her Soup

We've been REALLY busy this summer. So busy, in fact, that Dakota has been falling asleep in the craziest ways/places.

At Landon's birthday dinner, she fell asleep hanging off the bench at dinner. She ate a little bit, but then hopped down under the table. She does stuff like that all the time, but I was surprised when I looked down a few seconds later and she was fast asleep on the bench between Tony and I! Poor thing kept slipping when her knees would give out but when we tried to help her lay down on the bench she had a fit! So, we put her back like she was and she napped there until we left! Crazy kid!

Then, this past week, we'd been out running around all morning and when she sat down for lunch, she just about passed out in her soup.

I can't help but laugh when she gets upset at the end of the video. I turned my phone off right before she threw her spoon across the table! She was just miserable, poor thing.

I can't get over how big she looks in that picture! My baby sure is growing up and I wonder if it's part of the reason she's so tired. She hasn't napped in the longest time and now she needs one at least a few times a week; I guess summer will do that to a girl.

Sports Camp, Week 3, Lacrosse

Today's sport was lacrosse.

Harper was looking forward to camp today, as you can see in the picture above. He is always excited to go which is great, but something seems to happen when we get there. They always start each session off with a warm up lap and he did that just fine, but when they said they wanted them to run zig zag through the cones, he refused. Then, when it was time to learn how to cradle the ball in the net of the stick, he was ready to call it quits and go home.Why? I have no idea. So, he broke down in tears and we made quick trip to the bathroom for a potty break and a pep talk. The pep talk worked and after that, it was smooth sailing...mostly. (Dakota was up to her old tricks, hanging on my leg and refusing to try anything, for the most part.)

After lots of practicing "scooping" up the ball, Harper was able to do it a few times and boy was he proud! He just kept practicing until he got it and I was impressed with his commitment. I had to keep reminding both kids how to correctly hold the stick but for the most part I just let them do whatever. Harper did his best to do what the coaches asked while Dakota played with me. 

All in all, lacrosse is a pretty neat sport. I'm not sure either of my kids will ever play it, but it's fun to learn!

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Down By The River

Yesterday morning the kids and I, including Landon headed to Patapsco for some river play time. I mentioned to Zoe that we were going and she drove down and met us there as well, so it was reminiscent of last summers trips to the water, and it was nice to have all the kids together. One of the mom's from preschool and her two boys joined us as well, so we had ourselves a little party of 8.

The swinging bridge is always a favorite for the kids but it never fails to freak me out a little. I always imagine one of them falling off the side...horrors.

The weather yesterday was very mild, mid 70's when we arrived at 9:30 am and the water was pretty cold, but the little kids sure didn't seem to notice. They ran right out in it and I'm pretty sure each of them fell all the way in at one point. Zoe and Landon braved the water a little too, but they didn't get wet past their shins.

Dakota thought she'd follow Landon and Zoe across the water but when she realized how deep the water was getting, she headed back.


Not sure what they're talking about here, but they're sure cute!

My two big kids...for some reason my camera wasn't working very well when I took the pictures of them, not sure what happened.

The two preschool friends playing in the sand.

Dakota wanted to wear goggles and she actually held still long enough for me to put them on her. Then, she walked over to the water, laid down and put her face under to see with her goggles! I couldn't believe it! This is the same chick who cries through swim lessons and refuses to get her face wet!

We played for about an hour before it began raining. It wasn't a heavy rain so we tried to wait it out but when it started falling a little harder we packed up and headed home. This was the moment Harper realized it was starting to rain; he'd been covered by the leaves on the trees and hadn't realized it'd been raining.

There is something so peaceful and calm about going to the river and I just love it. It's a lot of work getting thing together for it, but it's worth the work every single time. I loved that the kids had friends to play with this time as well. It's always nice to see little kids playing and having a good time!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

“Mama, Look at Our Funny Faces”

Would you believe it if I told you that Harper was a little stinker? He always finishes his ice cream before Dakota and he always asks her in the sweetest voice if she’ll share hers with him. She cannot resist his big, beautiful, brown eyes and she always shares…he’s a total stinker.


We take the kids out for ice cream at least once a week these days (sometimes Landon joins us and other times, like this, he won’t) and the kids just love it. We end up at Baskin Robbins because they have my FAVORITE ice cream ever, (strawberry cheesecake) and it’s the closest thing to our house.

When we took them this past Monday, they were being extra silly and wanted me to take pictures of their “funny faces”:

Crazy Face


Sad Face


Mad Face


Silly Face


Dakota's 3 Year Check Up

Dakota had her 3 year old check up on Monday and I totally forgot to post about it.

The appointment wasn't too traumatic since there were no shots involved, but Dakota was NOT happy about having to go see the doctor. She cried when we weighed her, she cried when we measured how tall she was, she cried when the nurse took her get the idea.

As soon as the nurse was done all crying stopped...until the doctor came in. The doctor and I discussed all the things that are important when talking about 3 year old's first though and I mentioned to him that I was a bit concerned with her level of anxiety. She seems to have a lot of anxiety about meeting new people and/or new situations and with preschool fast approaching, I wanted to know if I should be worried. After a lot of listening he told me he thought the best course of action would be to let her start preschool and see how things unfolded...and that's exactly what I'm going to do. I've warned her preschool teacher that Dakota was STUBBORN and strong willed and her teacher has assured me that she's ready. But, I'll admit that I'm still pretty worried.

The doctor did his exam while Dakota cried and I did my best to help him get through the ordeal. When it came time for him to check her eyes, she flat out refused to open them. We nicely asked her to open them, we tried to bribe her to open them, we assured her it wouldn't hurt or take long, and we even tried to pry them open; but nothing worked. She squeezed her eyes shut like her life depended on it. When the doctor told her he guessed she wouldn't get a lollipop she said she didn't want a lollipop anyways. Stubborn.

Anyways, she's growing just as predicted and seems to be right on target developmentally. She weighs 32 pounds and is 38 inches tall.

And very, VERY stubborn.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Sports Camp, Week 2, T-Ball

I wasn't too excited about taking the kids to sports camp this morning since last week didn't go so great, but I put on my happy face and took them anyways. We got up and followed our usual routine but as soon as I pulled Dakota's yellow t-shirt over her head she got teary eyed and said she didn't wanna go to "ports camp". I did my best to ease her fears but the more I talked the more she cried; Harper on the other hand was looking forward to going and seemed ready for anything, which was nice.

We got there just as the kids were heading onto the court so there was no time to sit and worry about what was going on, which was probably a good thing. When I saw that today's sport was t-ball I relaxed a bit because it is a sport in which both my kids are familiar.

They did their warm up which consisted of running from one goal to the other and back again and then they started their lesson. The coach taught them that home plate looked like a house and the proper names for the three bases. Then they ran the bases a few times, played a game of tag and then she brought out the baseballs. They practiced throwing, then how to toss the ball up and catch it, then she had them try to toss the ball into the air, clap and then catch it...that was interesting to watch!

Dakota wouldn't try any of it, but Harper was really enjoying himself! Dakota did exactly what she'd done the week before (hung on my leg) but once I broke free of her grasp I was able to trick her into playing with me a little.

At one point she even seemed to be enjoying herself and I caught a little smile! Hooray!

T-ball was a success and I think we'll try to get outside this week a little bit to practice.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Slip N Slide

I found an inexpensive Slip N Slide at Target a few weeks ago and it sat on my kitchen counter for a little more than a week waiting for a good weather day to use it. It was either not quite warm enough for it or raining, but we finally had a good day this past week.

Landon and I went out and unrolled it, attached the hose, turned on the water and it immediately popped. The seam just ripped right out in two spots. I was super annoyed, but the two little kids were really excited to play on it so Landon and I grabbed duct tape and did our best to make it work.

While they were slipping and sliding, Landon and I attempted a game of horse, but we didn't get very far due to the heat.

When it was time to pack up the slide the two kids were really disappointed. They were really enjoying it but it was ripping further along the seam and losing more and more water to the grass. Since they were already wet and I was so hot, we loaded up and went down to our pool for a few hours...or four hours to be exact!

Here's a couple slip n slide video's, of course:

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Pool Party and Birthday Celebration

This afternoon we headed over to Chris and Lori's house for a little pool time and BBQ. The kids were so excited to go see Lea, they just love their cousin! As soon as we got to their house the kids changed and were ready to jump in the pool; it was a beautiful afternoon for it!

Everyone was having such a great time swimming and showing off so I decided I'd better get a little video:

And, I'm not sure how this started, but Harper was LOVING it when Tony would run with him and they'd jump into the pool together:

After swimming for a little over an hour or so we headed in for dinner. It was nice enough that we were all able to eat outside under the umbrella; the weather has just been very mild for the most part this summer. Today's temp's were in the low 80's. After dinner we sang Happy Birthday to Landon and Dakota and ate some cake that I'd made. (Landon wanted me to make the Oreo cake he loves, so that's what he got.)

And, that wraps up the Happy Birthday's for Dakota and Landon for the year. No more cakes, candles or trips to do fun stuff (birthday fun stuff, anyways) for awhile. Next birthday's around here will be Brandon and Harper in August...after we get back from vacation!

Dance, 9/18/18

Dakota had her second dance class last night. Her class this year is at least twice the size as last year and it's harder to get videos...