Sunday, September 22, 2013

September was a Big Month

Summer ended. You would never know it based on weather changes though. It is still in the 90's, and thank goodness it isn't in the 100's any more!!

No, I know summer ended simply because Preschool started!! Bradley is still attending the Palmdale Parks and Rec preschool program as a Blazing Comet this year! (3-4 ages) He seems to love it and begs to bring his lunch every day.We still carpool with Sam and Seth (twins), which Bradley really enjoys. He is in the phase of life where he recognizes what friends are and he desperately wants to have them. But his communication skills are still pretty behind other kids in his class and this makes it hard for him. I think it is good for him to be around Sam and Seth and find friendship with them.

Every time I herd three preschoolers and Luke into the classroom I gain more and more respect for the Becks (whom have way more than just the twins!). I struggle with my two kids, and preschool mornings are always a good trial of patience and creativity. How can I get all three boys to listen? And not ignore, hurt feelings, or kill any of them in the process. It is a balance that is good for me to work on.

We also started a new basketball season! This is Bradley's second time in the 3-4 YMCA bball program. It is much more organized this season, and well Brad is a few inches taller which helps with the shooting. Man Bradley is still a little spaz. But he has a little more patience in waiting for his turn. But then when he doesn't get his way there is a huge pouting episode until someone ushers him down the court. Oh well. That's why we do it right! To learn to be on a team!

Go Purple Machines!!!!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Never the Same

We've hit a major life time development. Bradley is 40 inches- with shoes on.
This makes him eligible to ride the first tier of "big kid" rides in Disneyland. We've been measuring Brad once a week for a month now, so he knew what was going on. And we knew he was looking forward to going on the big kid rides, but we didn't anticipate how thrilling it would be for Brian and I to accompany him on these rides!

In other equally exciting news, Luke is big enough to go on the more intense Disney rides like Dumbo, rockets, and Rodger Rabbit! AND I don't have to feed him every 2-3 hours so we BOTH were able to go on more than three rides this last trip!

Our Disney day began as usual - for those that weren't aware, our family has the Year-Round Disney Pass and we only live 1.5 hours away from Anaheim- Bradley was convinced we needed to go on Pirates first. However, we were in our Disney stride and had a very smooth departure from our house and got there right around opening. So lines were really really low! We decided it was time to take Luke on Dumbo!!! He seemed rather amused although not altogether sure it was as excited as the rest of the family.

Then we took a real departure from our Disney routine and went to Toon Town. Yea I know I'm really surprised too. Toon Town opens an hour after the rest of the park, so we waited a few minutes and then Bradley and I ran to Gadget's Go Coaster! Which is Brad's second fave ride. It was really fun to hang around and play with all the little kid stuff and not have a million little kids all over everything. Luke and I also took a trip to meet Minnie while Brad and Dad took another spin on the roller coaster. Minnie's house is so cute! Then we all went to Rodger Rabbit's ride. Luke was not very excited about the spinning because he had to sit on the seat not in my lap. But Bradley loved the crazy spinning cars.

THEN of course we went on Pirates, hung out in the Pirate Store and then on Haunted Manson. After that
Brian had the wild idea to go to Splash Mountain and measure Brad. We got two thumbs up, and since it was still before 10 am, the line wasn't even 10 min long. My fave ride=I get to take him on it.

We lifted Brad up to show him the big drop and see what his reaction was. Of course he was like, YEA let's go do that!! We got in line and Bradley started holding his nose. He was under the impression we would be going under the water. It took lots of convincing that he didn't need to hold his nose, and we settled on I would tell him when the big drop was coming. I'm not sure he trusts me very much... an issue for another day I guess. After we were in and going they pull you up a big slope and then go down just a little hill. Brad immediately began telling me NO he wanted to go on the BIG ONE. Then we rounded the bend and he saw it and started getting really excited- see pic above where he won't look at the camera. ;)

You can watch the movie for yourself.

Clearly we have an adrenaline junky on our hands. Because there was a second Splash Mountain ride, and much begging for a third. Then we told him about other rides he could go on like... Star Tours!

Of all things Bradley was unimpressed with the line but LOVED sitting in the space ship!

Next up we'll try Space Mountain and Radiator Racer Springs! Brian thinks Tower of Terror would be okay, but I think we should wait. We'll see how it all works out!

For the Grandparents: Luke's First Ride on Dumbo!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Pool Party Playdate with the Twins!

We happen to know twin boys. These twin boys, Sam & Seth, live in our neighborhood, go to our ward, and preschool, and happen to have triplet baby brothers. So I offered to take the twins for a few days so the family could prepare for the oncoming triplets (who are now here and in very good health).

So we had a pool party of course! What else do you do with three boys in 90 plus degree weather??

 Sam is in all blue, Bradley is in green shorts and a blue top, Seth is in Blue shorts and a Nemo top.

 They were all pretty excited about the pool. And then we put the slides in the pool and we reached epic excitability factors.
 Leaping for joy.

 Of course we had to pull out the other water toys. Everyone had a turn. But Seth really loved just laying down and chillin in the water.

 Sam loved to sneak up on his bro and play "balance beam."

 Water fight.

 Sam taking a pause from his detailed conversation to pose for a pic. He put the water toy inside as a rug for the house.

We had lots of fun together and didn't even come out with any broken bones, bruises or blood. Which really is an accomplishment with three roudy boys! 
Luke is not pictured because he slept the whole time!! It was great!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Luke's First Birthday!

Luke had a great day. Here are some pics. Most of them are also on Facebook.

 Bradley still does not like birthday cake! But he likes ice cream!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Up to?

Yes we've been up to a lot!

Disney trips, hikes, playing around the house! We've really been having a blast here in California and loving spending our time together.

 Disney trip in June!

 Swim lessons for Brad twice a week.

 Hiking along our fave trail!

 Tending to our garden. Brad loves this!

 Fourth of July trip to Valencia to escape the heat! No fireworks were had, but we did get to play on the beach all we wanted!

 And of course we discovered the coolest mini golf course ever in Valencia.
In this pic brad is laughing because he knows he just cheated! But he was a good sport and played most of the real mini golf rules this time.

And of course, eating noodles!!!!! Luke also likes noodles and red sauce if you couldn't tell.
I love my boys.

Don't be fooled by the internet allusion that life is perfect. It is so easy for people to only see the happy pics posted and assume this or that family has it so easy. (Trust me I know, in the grand scheme I do have it easy. I have running water and flushing toilets and baby wipes. I live a cushy life.)

But for all the fun things we've been able to do this last month or so Brad has been so hard! Ever since Luke has started moving and getting more attention Bradley has almost equally called for attention in negative ways. Acting out, saying "bad words", just being really rough with everyone around him. It is so hard not to act in kind to the roughness. I find on days when I have anything on my agenda other than playing, Brad has a really hard time unless a movie is on. As in, we can either play together or he can get in trouble or he can watch a movie. Laundry, dishes, cleaning, are all excuses for Brad to find some alone time to do something he knows is not good.

So my house is going through really dirty and clean phases. Play day = dirty house. Movie day = clean house. This week we've finally been able to have a good balance because we've had friends over nearly every other day. Friend days are big play days. But then the day after Brad is tired I think and has tired cranky energy. And I know- here's the cop out- A movie will totally temper Brad's bad actions and he will calmly sit and watch... and then I can clean!!! Or chill.

Overall I don't have many good solutions on how to handle this new naughty phase. I know what not to do after about a month of doing everything wrong. I swear at any point during the day last month you could ask Brad how he was feeling and he would tell you angry. I think he doesn't understand many other emotions. Never the less, some form of frustration was his default all last month. I really hope I can do better. Maybe this last week is a good example and just having more structure and play dates is a good thing for him.

Brad really struggles with wanting friends, having friends, treating friends nicely, and beating up his friends. I know this is literally the time of life where he is learning how to treat friends. I just wish that being nice came easier to him. Maybe I wish being nice in the face of frustration came easier to me too!

So life yea, is fun, but hard. But that is what makes it good, right?