Thursday, February 17, 2011

breath of spring

Today was the first day of spring weather of the year.  I did not realize how much I have hated the cold until I felt the warmth again. 
This first taste of spring brought to mind spring break and for some reason I started to reminisce about the spring breaks of my childhood.  I grew up in southern Utah.  All of the high school and college students in northern Utah used to come to my hometown for spring break for a taste of sunshine.  For the entire weekend they would hangout on the Boulevard- one of the two main streets of my little town.  There were literally hoards of teenagers just standing around.  It had to be the police department's least favorite time of the year!
Anyway, traffic on the Boulevard was a slow crawl for the entire weekend.  Most locals would avoid it but every once in a while our family would take a drive down it just to gawk at the crowds.  One year my mom and my two teenage sisters were stopped in traffic on the spring-breakified-Boulevard when two guys opened the doors to the car and hopped in the back seat with my sister.  They were just pulling a stunt and didn't look to closely at who was in the car.  They had thought my mom was a teenager too.  Boy, were they embarrassed!  It ended up that the guys actually were good friends with some of our cousins who lived up north.  Small world!  If I remember correctly, my mom even invited them over for dinner.  This quickly became a favorite family story to tell and is one that makes me giggle even after all these years.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

eighteen months

Our little guy hit 18 months on Monday.  He had his first official day in nursery at church on Sunday.  He played for the first twenty minutes and when he realized that I was not in the room anymore he climbed up on one of the teachers' laps and fell asleep.  Just like James.
At the doctor's on Tuesday he weighed in at 24 lbs 12 oz and 32 inches long.  I can not believe that he is getting so big!
The latest Matthew words:  uh-oh, Mama, Dada, ball, chicken, hey, cookie, away, ho ho ho, choo choo,  uh-huh.  He loves to read books, lightsaber fight, tackle his brothers, ride on his buzz lightyear car and his brother's firetruck, build and destroy block towers and play with his daddy.  He has the best laugh- something between a chuckle and a belly laugh.  Take a look at this picture and you can almost hear him.

Monday, February 7, 2011


As much as we love our little Matthew, his addition to our family caused our older boys to revert a bit and time is not helping the issue.  Last Monday after both boys insisted on being dressed by Daddy instead of doing it themselves, I hit a wall.  I was done with my 7 and 5 year olds acting like they were completely incapable of doing ANYTHING on their own.
Enter the job chart.
For family home evening on Monday we talked about responsibilities, how everyone does different things to contribute to the family and what happens when they don't do their jobs.   What would happen if Daddy decided to stop going to work?  What would happen if Mama didn't do the laundry?  Etc.
So working together we made a list of things the boys should do on a daily basis and then get to check off each thing once it is completed. 
The transition has gone better than expected.  Samuel loves checking things off his list and will race upstairs to make his bed if he sees that he forgot to do it earlier.  Practicing piano and doing homework are also much easier.  James is getting dressed on his own witout any help at all and cheerfully making his bed and practicing his reading.  They actually cleaned their room last week without me asking!  They also take time to play with Matthew since I put that on the list as well.
Week 1 of the job chart, although not perfect, is a definite improvement.  Why didn't I do this before???

Sunday, February 6, 2011

longest two minutes of my life

So Matthew and I accompanied James to storytime at the library the other day.  James and 11 other four and five year olds spent half an hour engrossed in the creative story telling of our local children's librarian, Miss Lori.  Even Matthew enjoyed it!  At the end of storytime, Lori set out crafts and puzzels for the kids to work on.  James created a masterpiece of a penguin out of tissue paper and feathers.  I was rushing him out the door so I could go to the store before it was time to pick up Sam when I ran in to Lori and we started chatting about James' art class (a great topic for a future post).  As I talked to Lori, Matthew let go of my hand and toddled off to the next room to look at the board books he loves so much... or so I thought. 
I quickly finished the conversation so I could round up Matthew and James and get going.  I walked over to the board books.  No Matthew.  I walked over to the doll house and puzzles.  No Matthew.  I walked up the stairs which he loves to climb.  No Matthew.  At this point I was getting frantic.  The children's library is not very big and I searched all of it twice.  No Matthew.  I was making a second loop, asking everyone if they had seen my little guy when another Mom came up to me with a teary Matthew in her arms: "I found him on the elevator."
I uttered a heartfelt thanks and sat down on a nearby chair to snuggle Matthew, needing reassurance more than he did.  Another mom came up to me.  "My son did that once.  The elevator button is so low that the babies can reach it.  So scary!"  Yeah, no kidding.  It hit me that I was lucky no one had tried to summon the elevator to another floor while Matthew was inside by himself.  Poor little guy!  It must have been terrifying or at least terribly confusing!  I can just picture him, so proud of himself figuring out how to make the doors open and then so confused why they closed and he couldn't get out.
For future library visits, maybe I will just keep him strapped in the stroller.  From the time I realized he was missing to the time I had him back in my arms it was only a short two minutes.  Although I gotta say, it was the longest two minutes of my life!