Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing—Benjamin Franklin

What did I do for entertainment before I had kids?

So, I know I say this all the time, but it is true: I have the funniest child on the planet. This is him "keeping an eye out" for everything. I'm not sure where it came from or why on earth he does it, but I am sure glad that he does. One of my favorite things to do in the grocery store is ask him to keep an eye out for something.
This is the usual position you can find the kids in these days. At any given point in the day E is snuggling, kissing, hugging, and otherwise smothering Gigi with love. On the one hand, I'm so so glad that they love each other so much. On the other hand, I'm afraid for her life half of the time. It's a mixed bag. They do love each other so much though.

Dog pile! One of the better things I've taught E. Of course it backfires whenever I sit on the ground, but it is awfully fun. We regularly have dog pile parties. Which promptly end when E starts to play dog pile with Gigi.

The other day we were saying prayers and E was amazingly grumpy. He is also the most stubborn being on the planet when he wants to be. When I finally got him to say his prayer while kneeling on his knees in his reverent voice (a feat that is nearly impossible when he is being difficult), he put his own twist on the prayer. I would prompt him to say, "Please help us to sleep." and he would repeat, "Please help us not to sleep." And proceeded to negate every single thing I said. I'd like to say that I was a good mom and held it together, but alas, I was completely lost in the giggles for the rest of the prayer. I finally sobered up when it ended in "Not in the name of Jesus Christ. Not amen." and managed to have a chat with him about how to be reverent, but man alive! He is a funny kid.

The other night he was afraid of shadows. It was my fault because I mistakenly left my dress form out in his room. Who doesn't find the shadow of a headless body creepy in the middle of the night? When I came in to comfort him I did the usual things and told him that if the shadows scared him to tell them that Mommy would come get them if they got scary again. He then informed me that it was all ok because "Horsey was chasing them away." About a minute later he started grabbing at the air and making chomping noises. When I asked what he was doing he informed me that he was "catching the shadows and eating them all up." What can I say? It is effective.

Since we got Swimmy, E has been so excited about everything the fish does. The other night he told me: "Aw! Look how cute! He's saying his little fishy prayers"

E has never been a big fan of pants. I don't know why exactly, but whenever given the chance, he will strip down to his skivvies. He's decided that if he doesn't like his pants, no way does Gigi like hers. He has informed me several times when Gigi has been crying, "She's sad because she doesn't want to wear pants." Oh dear.

"He's on it!" That is his favorite phrase whenever I ask him to do something.

There was a fly around the house the other day and he announced, "There's a flyer! I need to kill it! I love to kill it!!" Apparently I need to be a bit more careful about my bug aversion.

Ever since Gigi came home E has had a thing about "mangers." Basically he rounds up all the pillows he can find and arranges them in a "manger" for Gigi and then borderline forces me to put her in there. I guess I should be grateful that it is the manger that sticks instead of the fort that he has tried a few times (E covering baby sister with pillows=a mommy heart attack), but sometimes it is a little inconvenient. The other day I said that we couldn't put Gigi in the manger right then and he announced, "Yes we may can put her in a manger because that is what mommies and daddies do." Who knew, right? I get enlightened all the time about things that mommies and daddies supposedly do or should do in E's mind.

As for Gigi, she is laughing all the time now and by laughing, I mean chortling. She sounds like an old trucker man. No joke. 
We call her our damsel in distress because more often than not her hands are in the general vicinity of her face and usually plastered to it. At one point she favored attempting to poke her eyes out and then she would weep and wail and give me a look that clearly says, "What on earth are these things and why are you allowing them to attack me?" She is always sleeping with her palms jammed in on either side of her face. It can't be comfortable, but she doesn't seem to complain about that one. E refuses to allow her hands anywhere near her mouth if he can help it. He grabs them gently and says, "No no, Gigi. We don't eat our hands." He is full of helpful hints like that for her, and for me for that matter. "Mommy, Gigi doesn't like you to do that." Or "Gigi, you shouldn't be kicking me. It's just not nice." Or "Mommy, Gigi wants to wake up now."
She is still growing like crazy and would love more than anything to be beheld every second of every day. She has a smile that makes the whole world brighter. She yells quite a bit, but rarely cries. We were laughing the other day because the rare times she legitimately cries, we all panic and frantically run around trying to fix it. When you hear it so seldom, it is the most heartbreaking thing. 

She thinks she can talk and frequently makes her opinion known. I've never met a baby with more personality in her little eyes. She's been alert and aware of the world around her from day one and I've sort of had the feeling since we first met that she is commiserating with me. 
E still thinks she is his personal responsibility/toy/teddy bear. It makes him awfully rude in public (he yelled at a nice old woman in the grocery store because she dared to try to peek at Gigi), but it makes him the sweetest brother so I can't complain too much. Gigi adores him. It doesn't matter how upset she is, he can make her smile. He tells me all the time, "Mom, tell baby Gigi  she's so cute." Or "Isn't Miss Pea beautiful?" Is it possible I prayed my kids into being immediate best friends? I guess we'll see when she is old enough to steal his toys.

Information overload

Whoa. That is all I have to say. Whoa.
Life has been so crazy around here that I haven't had a minute to think, let alone update the blog on all the goings on. Be ye warned, this is going to being an information dump. So, in order of appearance, here are the goings on of the last month or so:

My sweetest of the girls was blessed the Sunday before Bryce's graduation. She wore a beautiful dress that her grandma made for her and not only did my sister and her family get to be there, but Bryce's parents were there just in time too. All-in-all it was a fun family weekend and despite the fact that the house was in semi-shambles due to the move, we crammed everyone in and had a blast.
Bryce graduated from law school. Wahoo! It's been a long time coming, but we're finally officially done. He looked great in all his graduation robe glory. E was amazing through the entire ceremony. He applauded when he was supposed to, kept fairly still and calm, and except for asking, "Where's Daddy? Do you see him?" at the top of his lungs quite a few times, he miraculously managed to stay quiet up until the very end. Thank heaven for Grandma and Grandpa being there to keep him entertained.

We had about a week before the move so we finally made it to Luray Caverns. Fantastic. Other than some potty episodes of epic proportion (Gigi's amazing exploding diaper that went from ankle to neck, and E announcing in the middle of the tour deep deep underground without an exit that he had to go potty and getting a special escort) it was a great trip. I'm not sure what was more exciting for E, the cave or the geese and ducks outside.
Those were some seriously aggressive geese though. Bryce had to get physical a couple of times and I definitely stood guard and shook the finger of fury while E and Bryce made a quick getaway with the bread.
As many fun adventures as we had, I'm pretty sure E would've been just as content to hang around with Grandma and Grandpa all day long. Not to mention Gigi's reaction. We started joking that grandma and grandpa were a sleeping pill for her. We'd hand her off and she was instantly out cold.

And then there was moving.... This time it wasn't across the country, but we still had our fair share of adventures. We have yet to have a move where something truly terrible (usually health on top of something weather related) didn't happen, but all and all this time was fairly tame. Maybe because we didn't have to do all the moving ourselves. It was still eventful though, don't get me wrong. No horrific storm, but this move we had an even better disaster: pestilence. Cicadas. No thank you. I was praying that we'd get out of Dodge long before they hit, Bryce was praying that we wouldn't. Luckily, I won. We saw of few of them--enough to creep me out, but not enough to freak me out--but managed to steer clear of them.
The move went pretty smoothly and the kids did great. I don't know what on earth I would've done without Bryce's mom though. Man alive! We are so lucky to have such a great family. We had a couple of days without furniture so we got pretty creative with naps. I told E that he could either be a cat and lay in the sun (blankets in front of the sliding glass door) or a bat and lay in the dark (blankets in his bedroom). I've had a kitty on my hands ever since. Daddy also kept us entertained with an awesome fort. When we headed back to the hotel room after being in the new apartment E immediately said, "I don't want to live in this house. There is just no room." He's definitely enjoying running around.
Many a tear has been shed over E's friends not being around, but he is definitely looking forward to "pretty school" or preschool and making more friends. The complex we ended up moving into (a last minute miracle) has quite the population of other young LDS couples--which we had no idea about upon signing the contract--and we're definitely aware of how much Heavenly Father loves us because of all the little miracles like that that have happened. We're so excited to be in our new home and start settling in.  

Last but not least, a new fishy friend. Swimmy the fish. Usually referred to as Mr. Fish. E saw the old fish tank and immediately began requesting a fish--since I killed the last one he has never been the same. So, we took a trip the fish store and picked a good one out. We tried to convince E to name him something different, but he picked Swimmy from the get-go and Swimmy it stayed.
Whew! And thus ends my update spew. Lots of stress, lots of fun, lots of stuff... Welcome to a new stage in the adventure.

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