Sunday, December 28, 2008

Family Outing to the Science Museum

The best laid plans...(I remember saying that to a friend in college in our feminist days - "the best laid plans of mice and men" - and she said, "good thing we are neither!")

Yesterday, Rose #3 was unexpectedly, unexplainedly sick. She threw up a couple of times and was generally miserable. So my veggie-heavy, TV-free day morphed into a junk food, movie day during which we only left the house to go to Cub and Target.

So we made up for it (in part) today. We went to the Science Museum, of which we are members. Rose #1's favorite part was a computer program that helped her learn about how wind patterns are formed.  She spent quite a while learning about high and low pressure centers, and wind direction and speed, etc.
Rose #2 liked an exhibit that demonstrated air flow.  A ball sits on top of an exhaust outlet and when the air goes on, the outlet can be moved.  Then you see how far down the outlet can go before the ball bounces off.  Here is Rose #2 prepping to catch the ball:
Rose #3 took frequent breaks (with me) for snacks.  Nilla Wafers, raisins:  she wasn't picky.  Here she is in the snack corner smiling since she got to eat a bunch of Nilla Wafers:
MY favorite part of the Science Museum is the musical steps.  The Science Museum has connected a flight of stairs to a music program so that when you step on a stair,  a musical note plays.  There are lots of good things about these steps:  they are neat, plus they encourage young children to run up and down many times.  I.e.,:

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Quiet Saturday Morning

Up early to get some work done.  Every morning I wake up with one girl on my right (usually Rose #2) and one on my left (usually Rose #3).  Until the Christmas loft beds, I would also normally find another girl at my feet, lying perpindicular across the bed (Rose #1).  Yes, they still come into our bed, almost every night.  I just try to remember that when they are teenagers, they won't even want to TALK to us.  Quite the opposite these days, of course.

Today we are going to try to do a family activity - Science Museum, maybe, since we are members.  And my personal goal is to have 1) very little television 2) lots of fruits and vegetables (wish you saw Rose #2 with her ice cream and Whopper sundae last night) 3) thank you notes done by the end of the day and 4) a minimum of yelling.  On my part, that is.

Tomorrow, the Christmas tree comes down.  It seems like we only had it up for such a short time.  This year the Roses got to the glass bulbs before I could put them mostly on the top of the tree, so they were all threaded precariously on the bottom branches.  We lost quite a few of those bulbs this year, of course.   I feel like I was always running into the tree room with a broom and dustpan.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas '08 Continued

The most beautiful little shepherd you ever did see:
And Rose #2 and her cousin in a Christmas tank dress hug:

Christmas '08!

We had a wonderful Christmas Eve. We had a shepherd and a cherub in the Christmas pageant:

They were extremely well behaved.  Rose #2 the cherub waited patiently for her turn to go on, and Rose #1 the shepherd wanted nothing to do with me - she was playing Apples to Apples with the big shepherds in the shepherd waiting room.

After church - which went late - we had Christmas Eve dinner with Ahma and Ahgong.  Here are the Roses in front of the tree with their grandparents:

We had a slight emergency when Rose #1 opened the door to our bedroom and found one of the Christmas gifts in there - but all ended well.  Roses #1 and #2 got new beds for Christmas - loft beds.  They share a bedroom so they need extra space.  

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday Night Cuties

Rose #1 LOVES Kung Fu Panda. Mainly so she can do kung fu herself. SeeExhibit 1, below:
Rose #2 was just smiley. Slightly out of focus, but very smiley.
Rose #3 has ketchup on her face. (We had turkey burgers for dinner and I haven't washed her face yet.) But isn't she cute? She's a stinkpants, but a cute one. Sometimes she calls me "Mommy Tinkpants."

And, a shot of them watching the movie. The only movie we ever watch anymore - Kung Fu Panda.

I love spending Friday night with my girls.
We are having two big parties this weekend - one for Little Fins, the limb difference group we belong to for Rose #1 - and the other for BECHAMP family Christmas. We had the house cleaned on Thursday (by a group of professional cleaners) and the house looks GOOD.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Frayed Tempers

The holidays are coming up fast, and all we have is frayed tempers at our house. Or, to be more specific, my temper is frayed. I don't know if it is remnants of strep, or cabin fever (dang has it been COLD here in Minnesota), but everyone is crabby. Or I am crabby and my crabbiness is making everyone else crabby.

Every night as I drive up to the house at 5:30 I vow to be a patient, loving, kind, sweet and empathetic mother. But every single night I am greeted by super crabby, whiny kids. Example: Rose #3 asks for juice before dinner every. single. night. We have a rule: no juice before dinner. I am not a paragon of consistency but I have stuck to this rule for quite some time. You might think that eventually she will stop asking, but you would be wrong. Tonight I had to bodily remove her from the kitchen because she was HOWLING at the top of her lungs. (I do find it a tiny bit funny when she is sobbing, gulping for air, and somehow still asking "Juice! Please! Juice! Please!" As if adding Please! will change my mind. It doesn't.)

Another tussling point: every night Rose #2 wants the TV in the kitchen to be turned up to FULL VOLUME. I let the kids watch TV while I make dinner but I can't tolerate super loud TV. So every night I turn it down to a very, very respectably audible volume. Every single night we have a screaming fit about how "I can't hear the TV". (OF COURSE YOU CAN'T HEAR THE TV, YOU ARE CRYING AT THE TOP OF YOUR LUNGS.)

Phew. These are not earthshaking problems, I know. I know, I know, I know. But I feel like such an awful mother after I get mad at them for the umpteenth time about juice, or TV volume, or leaving everything on the floor all the time, or hitting each other, or, or, or.

Tomorrow, I will try again. To be patient. To be loving. To be kind. Because really, I do love the Roses more than anything in the whole wide world.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Jammie Shots

So, I told you that I broke Rose #3's crib, and here is proof:

She is now using her bed as a toddler bed. The unfortunate side effect is that she can get out of it whenever she wants! Oh well, this day was bound to come sooner or later.

I also offer for your enjoyment a quick shot of some post toothbrushing shenanigans. Doesn't Rose #3's hair look cute? Thanks Aunt Boo for letting Rose #3 muscle in on the MND haircut schedule.

I have been slacking a bit on the posting lately - I know, I know. I have been super tired in the evenings so it has been hard to blog. Most nights I just fall asleep on the floor in the girls' room. (Not very comfortable.)

Friday, December 12, 2008

An Explanation For the Awfulness

We-ell, we know why everyone has been so witchy around here.  Rose #1 has strep, so does Rose #3.  Rose #2 tested negative for strep at urgent care tonight, so either she dodged the bullet or the strep test is inaccurate.  Hopefully it is the former.  The timing is AWFUL.  Ahma and Ahgong are picking up the healthy Roses for an outing tomorrow and H and I were going to go Christmas shopping.  We'll see what shopping actually happens, I guess.  Bother.  Bother.  Bother.

I wish I was the kind of person who shops for Christmas throughout the year.  But I am not.  I never know what my girls want until it is close to the time - this time last year, Rose #2 was all about princesses, nothing else, heaven forbid you should suggest anything other than a princess toy.  Now she wants nothing to do with princesses and everything is about Pokemon.  Or candy.  Go figure.

On a note about Rose #3 - I have to admit that at about 1:45 a.m. this morning, when everyone was awake (you would think we had NEWBORNS in this house, not ages 6, 4 and 2) I was a teensy, eensy bit mad, and I put the bar down on Rose #3's crib a teensy, eensy bit fast and maybe not so gently.  Well, I broke it.  (I remember going shopping for this crib at Sears at the Mall of America when I was pregnant with Rose #1.  I think I went with Anna - can that be right?)  Anyway, it is a good thing that the crib turns into a toddler bed, because it really had no choice but to be a toddler bed.  The very, very unfortunate part:  Rose #3 has figured out that she can get in and out of her bed at her very own discretion.  This is not good.

Rose #1 got to stay home from school today (first 24 hours on antibiotics) and she is twirly, and bored, and sharky (her bottom two teeth STILL have not fallen out yet).  This weekend she has to work on her cultural heritage presentation - yes, they have first graders making class presentations at her school.  Sunday is all about the red envelope presentation here at our house.

This Just In: Christmas Pageant Roles

Rose #1: Little Shepherd
Rose #2: Cherub
Rose #3: (Too Young.)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

An Awful Night, Last Night Was

H is (right now?) giving his final presentation for his class - Verification and Validation - zzzzz (oh, wake me up, was I sleeping?) and last night he was practicing with his project group.  Which left me with the kids.  I love the girls.  I do.  I love them, love them, love them.

But after a full cup of orange juice was spilled on the kitchen floor, and Rose #3 peed on the bathroom floor because she was too busy hiking up her dress and arranging the footstool to actually Sit. On. The. Potty. And. Use. It., I kind of lost it.  I had to clean the kitchen and the bathroom, and I know that in the grand scheme of things (i.e., this vs. homelesness, or starvation, or even layoffs) it is not big deal.   But, I was really mad.  So, I yelled at the Roses, and I made them clean the living room and dining room in a very authoritarian manner, and Rose #2 looked at me with her crumply face and said, in a small voice, "I thought tonight was going to be a GOOD night."

I felt as small as this (I am holding up my thumb and forefinger and there is about a centimeter span between them).

So, I promised myself tonight would be better.  How is it better, you ask?  How is it that I am blogging at 6:37 p.m.?  The Roses begged to go up to the toyroom and watch television, and I, weak creature that I am, let them.

Who knew parenting would be this hard?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The Roses, Their Cousins, and a Jolly Old Elf

Today was the day - our annual trek to the 8th floor of Macy's. In Rose #1's time, it has been Dayton's, Marshall Fields, and Macy's. Luckily they keep up the tradition of the 8th floor, where a Christmas story is staged each year with figurines, lights, music, and signs to tell the story. This year the story is about Santa's elves:

The Roses enjoyed walking through the displays. There was a very large quantity of cotton (?) snow. Here they are looking at one display with moving Christmas trees:
All of Guppy's grandchildren were there. Here is baby Kate, who was extremely cheerful during the entire event. Her daddy is in the background:
And here is Rose #2 with her cousin Maddie:
And Rose #3 riding on Uncle Andy's shoulders. Uncle Andy is growing a beard which makes him very intriguing to Rose #3:

And finally here are the Roses sitting on Santa's lap. Rose #1 whispered what she wants to Santa, and I could not even hear. Rose #2 wants a "jellybean machine," and I do not even know what this is. Rose #3 whispered something about "Pokemon" before losing it completely and being unable to speak.

We all had a very good time, and returned to our house after the outing for delicious homemade soup (thank you Aunt Heidi!). What is Christmas without an outing to sit on Santa's lap?

Friday night at home...

It was a lazy Friday night at home. Once again, we were canoozled into watching Kung Fu Panda, which is actually a very cute movie.  Here is Rose #1 winking with pleasure because she got to watch her movie again.

And Rose #2, pouting a little bit, and looking crabbish.
And Rose #3, hamming it up as usual.
Rose #1 is working on her family tree.  She has to draw the family tree, label it, and then put a symbol that represents each person next to their spot on the tree.  I will take a picture of this  and post it here when it is done to memorialize it for all time.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Wednesday Night At Our House

So, here we are on a Wednesday night. H has class, so we were just hanging around.  Rose #3 decided that she wanted to wear H's socks as tights.  So, here she is posing for her sock portrait.
Rose #1 was lounging on the rug discussing two very important things - family trees (she is learning about her cultural heritage at school) and measuring things using "feet."  Meaning the length of her own foot, or mine, etc.  This is apparently a lesson about the vagaries of non-metric measuring.
Prior to this interlude the Roses played a game called "Lift Up Rose #3."  I don't like this game much because I am always worried that Rose #3 will be dropped.
And, lo and behold, she was.

Game over!

Monday, December 1, 2008

gsw87sf7w9fd67fw67 (Or, Title As Typed By A 4-Year-Old)

The post-MND belly of Rose #3:I couldn't resist bringing my camera to MND.  Here is Gus, my nephew, looking cute in the kitchen:
And here is Rose #2, posing in one of her model poses.
Rose #1 is very into equity.  If there is a shot of Rose #2 and Rose #3, there had better be one of Rose #1 (or woe befall you):
Sometime soon we will cure Rose #3 of her squinty-eye smile whenever someone points a  camera in her face.  Here she is with Aunt Brenna:
We had a good MND.  Pot roast (chicken for me), potatoes, broccoli, homemade bread, and Aunt Heidi brought a big old chocolate bar.  Yum.