Monday, November 30, 2009

More singing

In this video Maddie starts to sing the ABC song but gets interrupted by Jackson singing Twinkle Twinkle. Out of nowhere he is really starting to sing.

In this one she gets to finish but for some reason forgets the end of the alphabet. That night she was singing it and got it right.

Cutest thing ever

Yesterday morning Madison and Jackson came out of their room, came up on our bed and performed a song together.

This is a video with the actual song in it. This is not my video.

The most shocking part for me was that Jackson doesn't sing plus I've NEVER heard them even attempt to sing anything along with anything let alone do hand motions! And the cutest part is they say "finger snack" rather than finger snap. Then out of nowhere they break into happy birthday.

Putting up the tree

Saturday night we put up the tree. The last two years we did it when Madison and Jackson were napping but this year they actually helped!

IMG_7624 (127 of 142)

IMG_7628 (129 of 142)

IMG_7630 (131 of 142)

IMG_7639 (133 of 142)

Nana and Papa came over for a little while and they helped M&J put the ornaments up high.
IMG_7644 (135 of 142)

Jackson got the hang of putting the hook on the branch really quickly and he did such a good job putting the ornaments on. Chris would hand him one, he would put it on the tree, then go back to Chris doing a little happy dance. Madison helped too but she couldn't quite get the hang of getting the hook on the branch.
IMG_7651 (138 of 142)

IMG_7652 (139 of 142)

IMG_7654 (140 of 142)

IMG_7655 (141 of 142)

Late Thanksgiving

Since Chris's family knew Jim wouldn't be home until Thanksgiving night they planned to have Thanksgiving on Friday. Chris's Auntie Maureen has a great common room on the roof of her condo building in Arlington so we all gathered there.

Madison and Jackson were like different children from the day before. They were wonderful! They were independent, they ate, they didn't cry or whine which means Chris and I were able to enjoy ourselves!
IMG_7503 (62 of 142)

Jackie and Sophia
IMG_7506 (64 of 142)

IMG_7507 (65 of 142)

Jackson playing with Jim
IMG_7513 (70 of 142)

Nana Fitz with Sophia. It's so funny when M&J see her they yell "FITZY!!"
IMG_7518 (74 of 142)

Watch out Alyssa, Nana's drinking again ;-)
IMG_7519 (75 of 142)

Maddie even entertained herself with some cups for quite a while.
IMG_7545 (82 of 142)

Then there was some overzealous twirling.
IMG_7562 (92 of 142)

And some ring around the rosie.
IMG_7563 (93 of 142)

Look at those handsome cousins...
IMG_7572 (101 of 142)

It's officially impossible to get a picture where all 5 of them look good.
IMG_7578 (104 of 142)

And the girls...
IMG_7579 (105 of 142)

Jackson just sat there staring at the cake.
IMG_7593 (113 of 142)

After dinner cousin Mike, Jackson, Raffe and even Madison wrestled around on the floor.
On the way home the kids conked out in the car and Chris dropped me off at work. I initially took the night off but we were driving by early enough that I could still go in and avoid going in Saturday morning.

How much do mommy and daddy love you?

Very Thankful Thanksgiving

This year our plans were a little different than normal. Thursday we spent at my Aunt Judy's in Salem with my parents and cousins. I wish I could say it was a nice day but it just wasn't. Madison and Jackson were HORRIBLE. It had to have been one of the worst days we've ever had with them. We spent so much time dealing with them that I didn't even take out my camera. We had to take turns bringing Jackson outside because he was screaming so loud. Chris and I were so stressed. You could feel the tension in the air and everyone else was even quiet because they didn't know what to say. I felt so bad that we made it so unenjoyable. At least my cousin Venetia got to laugh that her kids were past that stage.

In their defense it was nap time but they've gone plenty of days with no naps and not acted like that.

They did get in a good deal of play time with 5 year old Jack. They had fun chasing each other.

After dessert we had to leave to go to the airport with Chris's family. His cousin Jim was flying home from Afghanistan that night. We were all there to greet him.

IMG_7416 (3 of 142)

The airport staff gave Jim's parents special passes so they could greet him at the gate. Poor Karen said she was sobbing waiting for him.
IMG_7425 (6 of 142)

Wouldn't you know he was the LAST one off the plane.
IMG_7432 (8 of 142)

There he is!
IMG_7433 (9 of 142)

IMG_7437 (12 of 142)

IMG_7440 (13 of 142)

Greeting his sisters...
IMG_7447 (19 of 142)

and brother.
IMG_7448 (20 of 142)

IMG_7459 (24 of 142)

Madison and Jackson weren't too happy to be strapped in the stroller that long so we had to let them loose. They actually did really well staying right with the group.
IMG_7464 (29 of 142)

IMG_7468 (33 of 142)

Jackson wasn't in the group photo because he wouldn't let me put him down.
IMG_7471 (36 of 142)

IMG_7474 (39 of 142)

IMG_7480 (42 of 142)

IMG_7485 (47 of 142)

IMG_7487 (48 of 142)

We went back to their house after the airport and had dinner and cake for Jim's birthday.
IMG_7498 (58 of 142)

While we were there Jackson was roaring at uncle Jim. Jim was awesome at reacting to it so Jackson wouldn't stop. The whole ride home Jackson kept saying "scare shim (jim)". And they've also been singing "happy birthday to you...bwow the candles!"

So Jim is home and we are so very thankful that he is safe. Unfortunately his break is only for two weeks.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

more videos

In this video Jackson shows off his amazing counting skills ;-)

Ratatouille is one of the kids' favorite movies. They've seen it a few times and by a few times I mean probably 100. They've never really quoted any movies they watch a lot but the other day out of nowhere Jackson sticks up his thumb Fonzie style and says "his thumb". It was so out of nowhere that it took me quite a while to even know what he was talking about. Eventually I remembered that there is a part in the movie where one of the chefs looks at the camera, says "I once killed a man." He holds up his thumb and continues, "with this thumb". I had to get a video of him saying it. It sounds more like he's saying "his" thumb but he means this. I think the french accent throws him off :-)


I've had these videos on flickr forever I just kept forgetting to link them.

In this one we are shown the silliness of being rolled around in the storage container...

Here they say night night and pretend to sleep. There is even talk of a care bear which I believe was in there with them.

Here the contents of the container is revealed...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

32 Months

Dear Madison and Jackson,

Lomo (free action)

You both continue to be a challenge this month. The fighting. The screaming. The whining. The tantrums. We've made headway on how to deal with it all but sometimes it's just a lot to handle. But when you're not fighting you are so incredibly sweet to each other. If one of you coughs the other says "you ok Dachan/Ma-ee?" followed by "tank you".

You've been really enjoying your tumbling class although we've had to miss the last two weeks. I've even seen progress in your participation in class. When it first started neither of you would follow what the teacher was doing but now you both watch what she is doing and join in.
There really isn't any gymnastics in the class and I hope to get you into a different class that is a little more involved.

You are having conversations with each other now beyond just arguing over something. I love to listen to the things you come up with in your room after waking up.

We are all napping in my bed now between 2 and 5. I used to put you both in your beds, sit with Jackson until he fell asleep then take Maddie into my bed. Eventually Maddie wouldn't stay quiet enough for Jackson to settle down so I would send her to my bed while getting Jackson to sleep. Now we just all sleep in my bed. I just love being all cozy and snuggly with you both.

You're still both horrible picky eaters. There is really nothing you will eat on a regular basis so it makes it so difficult to cook for you.

This month we started swapping day care with Gianna's mom Michelle. One day a week she and I take turns taking care of all three of you so the other can get some things done. It's been so great and helpful that we're thinking of adding another day a week so we both get a day off every week. You guys love to play with Gianna and always talk about going to GG's house. You even saw a red SUV today and said "GG's car!"

Dear Jackson,

Lomo (free action)1

You continue to be a very naughty boy always getting into things you shouldn't. You really just can't help yourself. Which leads to this month's accident. While we were waiting to find out what the doctors were going to do next we really didn't have time to dwell on the unthinkable possibility that you might not stay with us. Of course since then I've thought about it but have to stop myself because it's just too upsetting. Just don't ever leave me. You make my world go round, kiddo.

You absolutely love to make people laugh. It always amazes me that you get the concept of doing something that is funny so that people will laugh at you. One day when trying to take a nap you randomly reached out, grabbed my nose, and said, "got your nose!" Sometimes you'll do it and say "got your boogers!" Just today you grabbed your baby doll's nose and said "got your nose!" Too funny.

You are starting to count this month! You still don't have the order right but you like to point at things and say numbers. If I ask you what a number is your answer is always seven. You don't know any letters yet either. And forget about colors. You think everything is orange. You argue with Maddie at traffic lights over whether the light is red or green.

You STILL bring up the elephant ride at the Topsfield Fair completely out of nowhere! Today I asked you to tell Michelle who we saw the other day (Santa) and you said "Jachan rode de efant, Ma-ee rode de turles".

You are so incredibly thoughtful of Maddie. If I give you something to eat or drink you always want some to give to Maddie too. You kiss her boo boos, you randomly hug her which is usually followed by her pushing you away.

If you grow up and "turn" gay, I take full responsibility. There are some people in our lives who think the fact that you ADORE a baby doll that I bought you and your sister is going to "make" you gay. In my opinion it means you're learning to be a good daddy - gay or straight - and what's wrong with that?

You are still very affectionate with me. You love to hug me and sit with me and always be close. When you randomly kiss me I could just die and go to heaven. One day we were cuddling for nap time and you kissed me on the nose and said "Make mommy happy". Yes, buddy you make me happier than I ever knew I could be.

Dear Madison,

Lomo (free action)

You are either very serious or very silly and cute. When you're serious you won't crack a smile for anything, you go into a screaming fit in zero to sixty but when you're silly and cute you skip around the house on your toes, you tickle me, and sing silly songs in a high voice.

You tend to ask questions that you already know the answers to. If I know you know the answer I'll always throw the question back at you and you'll answer it. Last week when Jackson was in the hospital you were with us in the ER and asked to see Jackson and Daddy so I brought you in to see them once Jackson was all hooked up. I told you that Jackson was sick and that the doctors were going to make him better. Later that night you were out with Auntie Courtney and Uncle Stevie and asked where Jackson was. They both hesitated to answer because they weren't sure what to say. Then you answered, "Dachan in da hospi-al. Gonna make him all be-er."

Last week I was trying to teach you to recognize particular words in a book. I focused on the word "the". I showed it to you where ever it was printed. Later that day I pointed to the word and asked you what it was and you said "the"! You know all of your capital letters, colors, and numbers 1-10.

I got you some lacing cards and that is definitely an activity you enjoy.

Your tantrums have eased some but you definitely still have them.

I love you baby girl!!

Pictures with Santa 2009

Here are three years of Santa pictures!

I can't believe how much they look alike in the first one. They never look alike to me! But the poor things look terrified.
Horrible overexposed picture from last year...but funny that Maddie is holding an ornament like in this year's picture. And that Maddie was stone faced in this year's and last year's and Jackson is giggling in both.

Jackson wouldn't go near Santa when we first got there but Maddie went right up and high fived him. Jackson just clung to me. Luckily no one was in line so Santa had time to play a little catch with Jackson with an ornament. After that I was able to place them both on Santa's lap with no problem.

Before we got there I was telling them where we were going and who we were going to see and what they were going to do. I really don't think they remember Christmas from last year at all but I asked Maddie what she was going to tell Santa she wanted for Christmas and she actually answered "toys!" I was blown away that she knew what to answer.

IMG_6608 (21 of 21)

After that we went behind the display to get some pictures for our holiday card and for their 33 month "birthday". Uncle Mike, Auntie Kristen and Alyssa were able to meet us at the mall and I couldn't have gotten the pictures I did without them. Mike even bribed with cookies. I was surprised they actually listened to him although Maddie would NOT crack a smile.

IMG_6570 (8 of 21)

IMG_6574 (9 of 21)

IMG_6582 (10 of 21)

IMG_6591 (14 of 21)

Then we went to the new play area outside Macy's. It was perfect. My only complaint is there is no gate on it so kids just wander out.

My little monkey. No wonder we have to keep an eye on him.
IMG_6595 (15 of 21)