Sunday, March 31, 2013

My kids have amazing self-control.

This year was the first time that I ever made Easter baskets for my kids. They've gotten chocolate bunnies before, but I've never gone all out. But for some reason this year I was feeling more creative and more generous, so I decided to give them a little something.

So I packed their baskets last night and left them on the kitchen table for them to discover this morning. I expected, with them being kids, that they'd dump everything out and explore the loot as soon as they saw them. But when I came downstairs I found this.

As soon as I got there they asked if they could take everything out and see what was inside. They had peaked inside when they first discovered the baskets, but that was as far as they went. When I asked them about it, they told me that they thought they should probably wait for me.

I praised them for their amazingly mature thinking, and let them dive in and explore (much to their delight.)

While they were trying to decide which treat was the most amazing and should be tried first, I asked if they had thought about eating any of it before I came downstairs. They both looked at me with shocked expressions and said "NO!" That was a Happy Mommy Moment right there. :)

Now, don't get me wrong. These two aren't always perfect, and this self-control wasn't a completely natural occurrence  It's definitely a skill that we've cultivated over the years. There was a time when leaving baskets like this out in the open for them to find would have resulted in me finding them face down on the carpet in a sugar coma.

Just a couple of years ago, in fact, we had this incident, when they decided to sneak downstairs and go to town on some leftover birthday cake. It was a lovely mess to clean up. (And a lengthy discussion about not sneaking down and getting into the refrigerator on their own.)

So yes, they've come a long way. :)

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Help a Brother Out

Late Tuesday evening my son came down (rather suddenly and forcefully) with some kind of stomach bug. Thankfully it was a brief one, so not to worry. He's already feeling all better and is back to school today. But for Tuesday night and part of yesterday he was feeling pretty bad.

I mentioned before how caring and supportive my daughter is when anyone is sick or hurt. She loves to be helpful, and jumps at any opportunity. So of course when her brother got sick she was right there ready. 

As he was headed to bed Tuesday night he asked for some water, and of course little sister jumped up, grabbed his water bottle with an excited "I can get it!" and ran to fill it up for him.

When she came back with the water she also gave him a really sweet, gentle hug. He returned it with a weak (but sincere) thank you and a hug of his own. And I complemented her for being so nice and helping take care of her brother. She turned to me and said with a shrug, "Anything to help a brother out."

Neither one of them understood why that made me laugh so hard. :)

Friday, March 22, 2013

Celebrating Spring

I've seen the pictures of the snow that is still falling in other parts of the country, but here in Arizona the start of Spring this week really did feel like Spring. (Right now we're actually in the middle of that brief period of nice weather before it gets too hot to set foot outside.)

So I decided to overlook the fact that this is the time of year when the weeds start popping up, and the allergies go crazy, and the spiders and scorpions start coming back out, and just enjoy the beautiful day. And you know how the kids and I love to find any excuse to celebrate, so we decided to make an event of it.

Of course my daughter and I started the day with Springtime manicures.

Then after school we went to the park for some Frisbee...

...and bubbles...

...and swings...

...and general merriment.

And after a quick bath, the kids were happy to help with dinner (which had to include deviled eggs.)

It just wouldn't feel like the first day of Spring without them. :)

How about you? Did you do anything special to welcome Spring? Or are you in a part of the world where the weather hasn't caught up to the calendar yet?

Wherever you are, and whatever your circumstances, I hope this season brings you many lovely days of joy and renewal.

Monday, March 18, 2013

LML Monday - Fish & Chips & Family Traditions

It's Monday once again, my friends. And as always that means it's time to reflect on the things that made us happy over the past week. And of course now is also the perfect time to set the tone for a great week to come! 

If you missed my take on LML, you can find it here. If you missed the explanation of LML Monday, you can catch up here.

My family has a tradition of going out to dinner to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. We also have a tradition of avoiding the traditional "Irish places" (and thus the drunken masses.) Some years we go out for Mexican food. Some years it's a favorite sports bar. Something fun and festive, but nothing ridiculously loud or crowded.

This year we went to Old Chicago, as we have a few times in the past. They didn't have corned beef and cabbage this time, but they did have some pretty good fish & chips, which was Irish-y enough for me.

St. Patrick's Day 2013

And they didn't have the hard cider that they used to have on tap, but it turns out that Angry Orchard is pretty good, so it all worked out.

And of course my daughter and I followed our holiday fingernail tradition. (But it was even cooler this year, thanks to our awesome nail stamp kit.)

So yeah, we may not have gotten wild and crazy, but I'd say that for us it was just the right level of fun. :)

Ok. I shared mine - now it's your turn! Please feel free to leave me a comment and share some of your recent LML moments. Focus on the happy thoughts, and have a great week!

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Tooth Fairy Cometh

Yesterday was a very exciting day in our house. My little man finally lost his first tooth. And about two hours later (thanks in large part to a BBQ chicken wing) he lost the second one.

We had been playing the waiting game for a while. His two front teeth kept getting wigglier and wigglier... but were still holding on. We even tried a few times to pull them, but no luck. His new teeth had even started coming in. But still the baby teeth clung on.

But when they're ready, they're ready. And yesterday was finally the day.

By this point he was a little too excited to stand still (hence the blurry picture.) But his excitement was understandable. Not only is losing your first tooth (or teeth) a big deal in itself... it also means the first visit from the Tooth Fairy. And since he had lost the first two on the same day, he just knew that she was going to bring him something extra-special.

And he was right. This is what he woke up to this morning.

And of course the Tooth Fairy had to bring him enough to share, after what I overheard last night. He told his sister that, since he had lost two teeth he figured the Tooth Fairy would probably bring him two things, so he was sure he would have enough to share with her. Something that sweet just has to be rewarded. :)

A bit much? Perhaps. But that's just how we roll around here. Milestones are meant to be celebrated. And let's be honest, getting to create these little moments is absolutely one of the best parts of parenthood.

How about you? Have a favorite Tooth Fairy memory? I'd love to hear it!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

No big revelations here (mostly because I'm just barely recovering from a horrible 4-day stomach flu ordeal and don't quite have all of my neurons firing again yet.) But I just had to share something adorable.

Yes, that's my little "Thing 1" and "Thing 2" at our local library's celebration of Dr. Seuss's birthday today. The library really did a great job of it this year, with several activity stations, games, crafts, treats, story times, and of course a brilliant photo op.

The kids loved it. We hadn't been there very long when my daughter asked "Can we come back to this again next year?" You betcha! If you know me at all then you know how much I love a holiday that centers around books, so of course seeing my kids happily celebrating that love of reading completely made my day.

Unfortunately (because of the aforementioned stomach flu) I didn't have a chance to plan anything ahead of time for our own personal celebration, so aside from reading some of our favorite Dr. Seuss books as our bedtime story tonight, the library's birthday party was the extent of it for us today. But next year I will definitely be more prepared to make a complete day of it.

And if you missed the celebration today, make a plan now to participate next year! For more information about this annual event, please visit the National Education Association's Read Across America web site here.

Do you have a favorite Dr. Seuss quote? How about a favorite book? Did you do anything special to celebrate his birthday? Please share!