Monday, December 31, 2007

Tidings of Great Joy

Christmas Eve, we ate tamales with the Asays and actually sang around the piano--some of us. A dragon played the bells.
So we have a chimney, but Benjamin wrote a letter to Santa and said, "Please, don't come down the chimney because you might knock down the candles. Come through the front door." That must have been what happened. Although with the change in his routine, Santa did forgot one thing. It seems he forgot to put something in "Pup-pup's" stocking. When this was discovered Benjamin just shook his head and said, "Silly Santa." But he did bring, "Grand Central Station" that Benjamin "so wanted" for which he had a picture that he carried with him for many days and that Isaac ripped and Dylan ate and I eventually had to tape until it looks laminated and Benjamin is very, very happy with his train station. We can hardly walk in our living room for trains. And because when I asked Benjamin if he would like to learn how to play the piano and he responded, "No I want to play drums. Marching band drums," Benjamin also got a marching band drum set (with gloves and a whistle) and Isaac got cymbals. Dylan has baby bongo drums. Pa-rum-pa-pam-pam. Come follow the band...! The boys would be so delighted to help their cousin Matthew play his new Christmas drum set...

Dylan loved the paper and Isaac loved trying to sneak him more paper and drinks from his sippy cup. (Basta!) Thank goodness under the Christmas tree was a baby doll for Isaac to haul about the house, hug and pat on the back. (And a bulldozer to ride and scoop with--to balance the cosmos, naturally).

And Eric may be far from his California surf and sun, but he can own the hills of Laurel View Court. He opened his gift and said, "Hope I don't break my neck on this." Which is what I thought he would say, so that 's when I handed him a gift bag with a full set of pads--wrist, elbow and knees! And we even had a bit of a "Better Homes and Garden Moment" for a brief moment. This flicker of magazine perfect life came to life because an exhausted Isaac napped during dinner so we could actually light the candles and put out Grandma's china on Grandma's homemade crochet tablecloth) without worrying where his hands (or china or candles or dinner) would land. But during the holiday, especially when we sat down at the table and looked around, we missed our mischievous, laughing Isaac and everyone else that we love lots and wished we could share turkey and laughs with! Happy Holidays all!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

A Date (to Play)

On a big wheel built for two...

Neither toddler (21 m. and almost 18 m.) wanted the ride to end. Isaac's only concern is that he wanted to go faster--I had to keep reigning in the speedster. His little friend Emmaline seems to have no concerns at all and just relaxed and took in the sites. Watch for a moment in the video when their feet are moving in tandem to get the bike going. Good laughs. Good life. We like play dates!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Riding the Rails of Yesteryear and Yesterweek

So back in the day, I had a big brother that took me on my first train/car ride in my very own boxmobile that he had built for me. Lucky me and thanks David! I'm sure I must have liked it somewhat more than the picture capturing the moment might indicate. So, it would seem that Benjamin is just following family tradition. Even little Dylan got to ride in his very own caboose. All aboard! Tonight we'll be adding to our family gratitude list, "We're thankful for cardboard. Especially boxes. Big ones."

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Pullman Car

Yes. This is really where Benjamin slept one night last week. His idea. And I let him. I just couldn't say no. After all, as you can see, it wasn't any ordinary box. It was a sleeper coach on the Sante Fe Express. He seemed to sleep quite peacefully. I know because I just couldn't stop myself from peeking in on him many times.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Strummin on the old 'anjo.

Never a dull life around here--even for Dylan. Even when he's in his crib. The other two boys carried their stools in from the bathroom so that they could see him better and "chat" with him more.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Es Lebe d' Sport!

There I was. The mother of a third boy. Not quite four weeks after Dylan's arrival. Taking in the beauty of that moment when a father holds his child in his arms and blesses him before the congregation of family and supporters. That is to say, I was trying to hone in on the sublime while I heard Eric's words and simultaneously worked to calm a three year old who was broken hearted because:

1. We had forgotten to bring the water bottle that he had decided was the most necessary thing in the world for his survival that Sunday. Wailing and gnashing of teeth--even promises of the magical church water fountain to no avail.

2. He was surely coming down from the company high from the influx of two sets of grandparents, an uncle, aunt and doting cousins in our house not to mention a newborn who would not be leaving.

3. And after diffusing shrieks and full body thumps on the floor of a classroom, it dawned on me that in the tango of getting ready for church, no one had fed the child any lunch.
My firstborn was however finally tame once more sitting next to me at the pew and with sighs of acquiescence and residual sobs accepting each proffered fruit snack--all that I could seem to find with any caloric content in my diaper bag. I have a vague memory of five bags in rapid fire. A record on ripping and consuming by my count.

And Dylan Rhys Chambers was blessed and it was sweet. And then Eric said the words and I heard the words that neither of us were quite expecting, "a love of sport." No, not a love of the arts, or music or nature or animals. A love of sport. I should be grateful. Dylan did return to my arms from his blessing with the name we had agreed upon (not like when Eric's great-great grandfather Orange Warner Chambers gave his grandson a blessing and named him "Orange" because he was doing the blessing--a family name--strange but yes true--but also not the planned on name and probably the reason this man was called "Babe" or sometimes Warner by his family and friends) and I do hope that Dylan will be a good sport, love good laughs and enjoy games and in general be healthy, strong and happy. But am I up for all the love of sports? I had by that point already given up on hair bows, dresses and dolls and pinks and frills. I'd even applauded one of Isaac's first words--"ball" and gladly tossed it back and forth with him. I made sure the boys had a basketball hoop, a soccer goal and various sundry sport items. And then there are football Saturdays. But that all paled in the light of the latest fatherly proclamation. Sigh. I saw the dust caking on the Anne of Green Gables complete set and viva la dog-eared copies of play books and little league coaching tips. But I must run because while Dylan might very well love sports more than his mother (not difficult in any regard), he's not currently loving being the recipient of Isaac's wrestling attempts. Isaac is about to sit on his head. Time to blow the whistle on that.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


Benjamin came home yesterday from his preschool group chanting "Caps for Sale" inspired by the book of the day and proceeded to gather up his hats and pile them on his head like the cap man. So it was serendipitous that we received a new hat in the mail today for baby Dylan from Uncle Mike and Aunt Renae.

Very, very cute hat--worth smiling about!
Of course Isaac had to try it on for size as well.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

There's a Monster at the End of This Blog

Please. Please. Don't keep reading. If I can keep you from reading then, you will not see the monster at the end of this entry. What you're still reading! Please. Please. Don't scroll down another bar. I've told you there's a monster at the end and you really don't want to see it. (This is a bit of a litmus test--if you are the mother to a toddler, you will recognize the preceding allusion.)

Look here's the monster.

You're right. It wasn't really a monster. It was just Benjamin.

And Isaac will protect me. With a shoe for a weapon. (Have I mentioned how serious he is about his shoes? Even if we have forgotten where they are, he knows and will go and get them. And carry them around until you finally put them on for him.)

Life Under the Big Top

It's not a far stretch to envision the circus life in our living room. Most days, it goes without saying with nary a prop. This week however, Benjamin has taken it to all new levels as master of ceremonies under our parachute big top. He goes around singing, "Circus man (clown) came to town, wearing circles all around/There were circles on his head and circles on his toes/He wears circles wherever he goes. (In case you're wondering, sing this to the tune of "This Old Man"). At our circus, the elephants dance and the clowns perform which includes throwing lots of little plastic balls as far as we can and when we're lucky they land on the top of the circus tent and roll back down. That's very giggly fun. Our current audience is seated on a cushy bench and includes three dinosaurs, a duck, a bear, a stuffed "Towmater" truck, a bumblebee and of course several "pup-pup" dogs. Today Zorro the magician also amazed us with his disappearing coin trick. Please stop by for some of that abracadabra! And don't forgot to buy your popcorn. Five cents! We have the best deal in town!

Isaac, of course, continues to relish in his lion act by chasing us around with his deep, throaty roars. It's not necessarily an empty threat either--I learned that one day with yelps and consternation when he zeroed in on my big toe and gave it a good bite. It really hurt. I'm not sure that even with the circus in town we've come any closer to taming his beast, but he tempers all of this with contagious deep belly guffaws and exuberant, generally slobbery kisses. Benjamin often avoids these loving overtures as much as I avoid big toe bites.

Gotta run. I've been informed that Isaac "has mess on his face, NeeMom!" and is headed towards a couch near me!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I Have a Little Shadow

Today was like a good apple--crisp, crunchy, cool and refreshing. I sniff the season change and the relief from the heat has me feeling lighter. Not a cloud in sight, but the sun is friendly warm. Isaac (Dylan) and I got home from leaving Benjamin at Joy School and we tumbled out of the car into the playful outdoors. There we found our shadowing doubles enticing us to a good run and jump. Isaac kept trying to catch up to his shadow, but it just kept on moving and moving until I had to wave him away and spoil the fun by going inside.

But the cadence of Robert Louis Stevenson's "My Shadow" stays with me all day thanks to my own once a child memory.

I HAVE a little shadow that goes in and out with me,
And what can be the use of him is more than I can see.
He is very, very like me from the heels up to the head;
And I see him jump before me, when I jump into my bed.

The funniest thing about him is the way he likes to grow—
Not at all like proper children, which is always very slow;
For he sometimes shoots up taller like an India-rubber ball,
And he sometimes gets so little that there’s none of him at all.

He hasn’t got a notion of how children ought to play,
And can only make a fool of me in every sort of way.
He stays so close beside me, he’s a coward you can see;
I’d think shame to stick to nursie as that shadow sticks to me!

One morning, very early, before the sun was up,
I rose and found the shining dew on every buttercup;
But my lazy little shadow, like an arrant sleepy-head,
Had stayed at home behind me and was fast asleep in bed.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Hey Baby

Baby got beat

Smiles and Coos

Compliments of Dylan

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Juggling Act

Yes. That's Dylan helping me in Sharing Time by being blissfully asleep in his "pouch." Let's just say that when we play animals charades in FHE, Benjamin always tells me to be the kangaroo.