Friday, November 25, 2011


We began our second day in NYC in an attempt to conquer the subway. Our goal was simply to go up the island and get off around half way up central park. After our subway train failed to stop at the next three stops we figured out the express train does not stop along central park at all. Rather, it stops a few blocks after the top of central park.

So of course we decided to walk through the top half of the park get to the Natural History museum along the center. Central Park really is a beautiful place and Bradley loved running around all the trails. And it is HUGE! It was not a quick stroll to get to the center.

Then we FINALLY arrived at the Natural History Museum!! Of course we had to eat lunch first. THEN we went to the planetarium show. Bradley was unimpressed and began clapping so the darn thing would end. When that didn't work he buried his head in Daddy's shoulder and fell asleep. But mom and dad were SO excited for Bradley to see the dinosaurs that we didn't really try very hard to keep him asleep for very long.
A mildly grumpy Bradly found the dinosaurs really really cool. And proceeded to "rawr" at each new one.

And Brian was very excited to see the monkey exhibit. We kept trying to pick out which monkey was the "trouble maker monkey" in the "Night at the Museum" movie. (This museum is supposed to be THE ONE in the movie.)

Mom was way more excited about the largest asteroid in the world rather than stinky monkeys. Bradley really really wasn't excited about the largest asteroid in the world. He snuggled his new dinosaur and calmly strolled around with us till...

Mom found the beautiful rock room. And then Brian let Bradley run around for the next 30 minutes while I looked at all the pretty rocks. Best room in the whole museum.
On our walk through the rest of Central Park Bradley finally fell asleep. Too little too late. Brad proved to us that it is very foolish not to let a sleepy baby sleep. My attempt to put him down later that night was a complete failure and he finally ended up falling asleep in his fave place in the world- between mommy and daddy.

Lesson learned. Don't take the express subway train, and let sleepy babies sleep.

Future lessons learned:
*Sigh* the subway still sucks
Pizza is best when you stand in line
Jackson Pollock ROCKS
Never ending candy rooms really do exist.

Monday, November 21, 2011

A little bite out of the Big Apple

We needed another vacation before the end of the year. So we decided to tack on another vacation onto our trip out to PA for Thanksgiving. Where else but New York!
So here are some snipits from our first day.

It is a little chilly here. Bradley has quickly embraced his warm hat, gloves, and puffy jacket.

 After just a few minutes of walking, we found ourselves in Times Square! This place is crazy! Combine all the flashing lights and billboards along the strip in vegas, and put them along one or two blocks of street, and you have Times Square.

 Of course we had to go the air museum. Brian loves this pic of little brad, big SR71.

Just a hop over to Rockefeller center, (every time we walk through here, which is a lot for some reason, the 30 Rock theme-song goes through my head.)
 Then we ended our night at a little, tiny, 8 table Indian restaurant for the BEST Indian food I've ever had. Brad was a good little trooper and ate his rice without too many outbursts or grains of rice flung into the neighboring customers.

Soon to come:
Subway "success"
and Why Brad NEEDS a Nap Before 7pm

Friday, November 11, 2011

What Manner of Mother am I?

I ponder this question often, especially when I have the opportunity to spend time with another mother with young children. I always compare our mothering methods, our temperaments towards our children, our patience, our adorance of our children, our knowledge of the world vs the innate knowledge of being a mother, how the gospel is approached and taught in their home. I know, wow, I sound like an obsessively insecure person. But I can't help it, I learn so much about myself in this process. I learn so much about how many mothers there are, how we are all different, but how we all have unique amazing qualities that make us the perfect mother for our child.

More often than not I'm hard on myself and desire to have better, other, more experienced, mothering qualities. Mostly I struggle with patience, grumpiness, and my natural mother knowledge (which is nonexistent). But this always provides the opportunity to reflect on my own two years of motherhood and see how much I have changed in this short time.

Maybe I am just resistant to change, or don't naturally have the mothering gene, but I found the transition from independent woman to whole giver of self kinda hard. Maybe I'm just more selfish than other mothers, but it is not easy for me to drop what I'm working on and run over to my baby and jiggle a toy above their head to please them. It has taken practice and patience as I work to forget my desires and focus on my child's needs. I value this quality in other mothers. How did they get it!?

In my transition to motherhood I did get one surprise mothering ability! From the first night I  could easily wake up and hop out of bed to calm, feed, rock my lonely little infant. I never had a problem initially leaving my sleep behind for my little guy. I greatly missed my sleep, but I could get over that uggg time to get out of bed feelig. I admit now it is sometimes a little harder to jump out of bed at the littlest sound. But I can still do it, and I always feel a warm surge of gooey love when I hold my cranky toddler and he cuddles into my arms.

Anyways, after all the frustration that I'm not like that other "perfect" mother, I remind myself that after all, I've only been a mother for 2 years. Heavenly Father sent Bradley to me, my family, because he knew we would all grow in love and experience together. And, absolutely no one else has ever mothered Bradley Saponas. SO I can stop worrying about being that ideal mother for him, he already thinks I am.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

 Last night Brian was trying out a new recipe (yes my awesome husband cooks a few times a week) and he noticed Brad come in the kitchen and pull up a chair to the counter. Pretty normal. Brad loves to watch us cook. Yes, he loves to watch me too, even though I mostly have no idea what I'm doing.
 As Brian finished different elements he would place them in bowls on the counter. Pretty soon he noticed Bradley playing in the mixer bowl. Still normal for Brad.
Then he noticed he was actually stirring something. Further investigation revealed that Brad had gone over the drawer, pulled out his own mixing spoon, and came back to the counter and helped himself to the green beans. He was pretty sure he could improve on Daddy's preparation.
 I helped out by getting down an empty salt shaker and some plates. He will tell you which ones are for Mommy, Daddy and Bradley. Oh yea, he has this all planned out.
Sadly, even though he created a wonderful bean side dish, he would not actually eat it because of course it was green beans. At least they were good for playing with! There's hope!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

2 Year Old Boy

Bradley is 2 years old! He is in the multiple years old! Which also means I've been a mom for two years- an equally odd thought. We wanted to celebrate the completion of Brad's second year of life by doing all his favorite things.

We started our day with eggs and pancakes. Then we went to the gym (you may think this was a selfish parent move but Bradley really loves playing with the other kids). Then we went to see the airplanes!

 Both Brian and Bradley LOVED walking around and in the airplanes!

Next, we had lunch at a pasta place so Bradley could get some spaghetti with red sauce and we came home and Bradley took a nap while I baked a cake.
After Bradley woke up and was not grumpy, we played "Portland's Clues!" Which is just like "Blue's Clues" but Portland left the pawprints around the house not Blue. Bradley caught on right away and started running between the rooms looking for the paw prints. This is a pic of Daddy and Brad writing down the third clue (which you can see under the shoes).
 Of course Portland led Bradley outside to play frisbee. Brad loves running around outside. He is so so on the frisbee aspect of playing outside.

 After pizza we opened presents and ate cake! I made a special banana cake for Brad (and I didn't even mess it up!) Banana custard filling and blue paw prints on the outside, super yummy and cute.

 He got a bathtub bubble blower, train toy and..... a big boy basketball hoop!

Best Birthday Ever.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Pumpkin Carving- The Pumpkin Pi Pun

I grew up with a father who took a creative approach to pumpkin carving. He was definitely the first kid on our block who I knew to carve complex pumpkin designs. The first one I remember my Dad carving was Frankenstein. It was so cool and had so many little details- I thought my dad must be a pumpkin carving genius!! Naturally I enjoy the yearly carving myself but have taken an equally geeky although less intricate approach to my pumpkin ambitions.

This year Bradley was eager to help us out...and since we purchased 8 or so pumpkins, we had a few extra for him to play with.
The two from Burt's Pumpkin Patch were huge so we wanted to keep our tradition of one kid pumpkin one scary pumpkin. This year Brian did the cute kid pumpkin and carved a Blues Clues pumpkin in honor of Brad's fave tv show. (Duh I let my kid watch tv. How else do you get ready in the morning?)

Since we had more pumpkins than hands this year, I just quickly free handed a scary skeleton face for our scary pumpkin. I think it is pretty cute.

 Then we started on the "Pumpkin Pie" project.
 LAST YEAR we did a pi symbol --- π --- on a pumpkin for "Pumpkin Pie" and thought we were pretty clever. Then we got this great idea that we should carve the actual numbers into pumpkins.

Do you remember back to high school Trigonometry or maybe Geometry?  Pi or π represents the number 3.141592653589793238462643383279502884197169399375105820974944592.... to infinity. Well, if you are a complete nerd (Brian and Brian's family, whom I love with all my heart, are nerdy math nerds) you find all math humor HILARIOUS. And because I find my nerdy math family to be rather funny themselves, I thought we should take Pumpkin Pi to the next level.

Slightly extreme for a pumpkin pun I know.
But when you combine the nerdy math powers of my husband with my over-the-top artistic powers, the results are often ridiculous and extremely geeky. But to us, well worth the effort.

No, few trick or treaters got the joke. Neither did most of their parents.
Which honestly, just makes it even funnier.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Bradley loves candy.

Halloween, Christmas, and Easter are the three times a year he can have all the candy he wants. Because he doesn't get it the rest of the whole year unlike most kids.
He does get an M&M for going pee pee on the potty though.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Buzz Lightyeart Trick or Treats!

Bradley quickly got the idea of trick or treating and soon was asking to go to every house we passed. So much for only going to two or three houses. It turns out when you are cute they give you more candy too. Because we certainly came back with way more candy than houses we visited.


Bradley was Buzz Lightyear with a vest that blinked green and red with LEDs.
Portland was a cow. A Chick-Fil-A cow, specifically.

 Ohh my sweet cow, grazing in the grass. 

I think the practice at Disney's Halloween party this year really helped Brad grasp the true meaning of Halloween. Because as soon as we got home he dumped out his candy and began chowing down. He was fully aware of the wonderful treats he was collecting at every house and very eager to begin the feast.

 I'm allowed to spoil him a little, right? Who ever said candy was bad for kids. Never mind those dentists, they are just money grubbing tooth advocates. Their opinion doesn't count on Halloween.