Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

We had Thanksgiving all by ourselves this year. There are pluses and minuses to that. I personally enjoy having a large gathering for such events, but it's so much lower pressure when it's just us.  We ended up buying a smoked turkey and splitting it in half with a family in our ward. It was cheaper that way. It wasn't quite as good as I had hoped, but it was still really good and made for better leftovers than regular turkey.

Prepping for the feast.

 As I had suspected, the boys basically only wanted the rolls, cranberry sauce, and pie. 
Matt was more adventurous, and had a little bit of everything. And no, he didn't finish this gargantuan plate.

At dinner we had: smoked turkey, homemade overnight rolls, artisan bread dressing, cinnamon craisen cranberry sauce, green bean casserole from scratch, mashed potatoes,  and Matt roasted some chicken thighs we didn't eat so he could make real gravy.

After dinner we played rockband as a family. I don't think we actually made it through one song since we kept failing (it's kind of hard not to when the 3 year old insists on playing the guitar), but that's not the most important thing, now is it? We had fun.

 After our food settled, we went back in for pumpkin and pecan pie and hot apple cider. Walter literally licked his plate clean!! Dean only had a couple of bites, but was sad at bedtime that he hadn't finished his pies. I think the cider is the first "warm" drink Dean's ever had. He said, "Dean LIKES cider. It warms Dean up when Dean is coooold."And boy was it cold on Thanksgiving!! Leading up to Thanksgiving our weather was in the 80's! The day before had a high of 85*. The high on Thanksgiving? Well, I'm not sure, but I'm pretty positive we didn't break 50*. It felt freakishly cold because it was all windy too. It was kind of nice, though, because it felt like it really was the right time of year for this holiday. =)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Turkey Hunt

Prepared Not Scared has some of the cutest free holiday downloads and games (not to mention TONS of other amazing posts about canning, preparedness, FHE lessons, etc). I printed off this cute Turkey Hunt game, laminated the turkeys, taped them to tongue depressors, and we've had 2 days of fun turkey hunting.Walt generally loses interest after he has 1 turkey in his hand, but that's probably for the best because Dean can then run around and pick them all up.  Dean found some halloween make up and did up his own camo.

"Let's send Walter away!"

We have had a fun, longstanding morning routine (when we're not out running) of "pushing dad's car out" when Matt goes to work. Dean has done it for a very long time, and now that Walt's getting bigger, he's started joining in on the fun. The boys get so excited to say goodbye to dad and help push his car out. Dean has been pretty angry about having to share the responsibility often saying things like, "No! Only one kid pushes!" or "Don't let Walter push!!"  This morning after we pushed dad's car out, Dean said, "Mom, let's send Walter away!" When I asked him where he thought we should send Walt, he said very reasonably, "To Grandma's!"  I was surprised he came up with an answer, and a pretty smart one at that. He's obviously thought this one through. I told him that I would miss Walter too much to send him away, just like I'd miss Dean too much if we sent him away.

It was a hard transition to 2 for him. He had lots of issues with bringing a new baby home, and I don't think we handled it very well. New parents, crazy postpartum mom, 2 boys under 2. We did what we could, but the sibling rivalry persists and gets stronger it seems. We have good moments of sharing and caring and love, but it seems like the moments filled with frustration, anger, and jealousy are increasing the more mobile and able Walter is.

They constantly fight over me. Who gets to sit on my lap at church or during books. Who I hold. They HATE sharing my lap and end up whining, crying, and/or hitting each other when I try to do both.

Any good book suggestions or church articles that have helped you out on this topic anyone? Or your own tips?

Monday, November 08, 2010

Giving Thanks: Bike and Car

On Sunday our card was "I am thankful for my bike: Go for a bike ride."  Dean loves his bike, but hates his helmet. So for awhile there we didn't ride all that much because no helmet, no bike ride. He's okay with it now most of the time and will go if I suggest it.  Our friends the C.'s were outside with remote control cars. The boys loved it! Dean kept trying to follow the cars it was so cute. Once again blogger wouldn't let me load my other video, but this one works I guess.

Today our card was "I'm thankful for our car: Clean out and wash our car." I had forgotten that last time we washed our car Dean dumped the entire bottle of carwash out. So, we just ended up cleaning it out and vacuuming. Dean REALLY wanted to wash it, but he settled for watering the bushes and soaking Walter from head to toe. Luckily it had warmed up today and was about 74*.

Dean really wanted to take a picture. Not too bad.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Giving Thanks: Daddy

Today Dean chose "I'm thankful for daddy--do something nice for dad."  I first suggested that we clean out the tool closet, but when I went to go do it, he'd cleaned it out today while I was running errands!  So I asked Dean if he had other suggestions and he said, "Make him some chocolate bars." and I said, "Brownies?" And he said yes. So, the three of us made up some brownies after dinner. Walter enjoyed licking the beater and spatula waaaaayyy too much. =) According to Matt (I'm on a no sugar treats challenge at the moment) they were a little on the dry side, so I guess my little helpers helped me add just a tad bit too much flour. He said they were still good, though.

Dean's on this "take my picture while I'm purposefully closing my eyes" kick.

Friday, November 05, 2010

Giving Thanks: Grandparents

I have really wanted to institute some family traditions around here, and since we're staying here for Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, I thought it was the right time to start.

Last year I saw a Thanksgiving countdown at Sugardoodle, but I thought Dean might be too little to really get it. This year I decided to do it, but I customized it for us. I made up 21 cards with pictures so Dean could pick one a day until Thanksgiving. I think I'm going to glue them to feathers and put them on a Turkey body so we'll "pluck the turkey" every day. I really hope I can keep up with it because I think it could be really good/fun for us.

Today's card was: I'm thankful for grandma and grandpa--draw a picture for grandparents and mail them a letter.

I asked Dean if he wanted to paint, draw, or glue shapes for them. We went with painting today. He was generous with the paint, so we're going to have to wait until tomorrow to send them.

This was Walter's first real art project. I usually just put water on his brush and let him "paint" with the water.

Halloween 2010

Matt was still feeling a little poorly on Sunday so I ended up with both boys in church for 3 hours by myself again (this is like the 4th time in the two months). Being in nursery just puts me over the top on those days! It was pretty rough. I was losing it. Dean was losing it. I am just amazed at all the moms who take their children to church by themselves on an extended and regular basis (whether their husbands are in stake pres./bishopric/inactive/non-member, etc.). You women need a medal for continuing on!

Since Matt got to sleep some, he was feeling slightly better by afternoon, so that's when we did our carving. It was so hot in the direct sun! We decided not to do intricate pumpkins because we didn't want to stay out there longer than necessary!!  Dean drew his face for the pumpkin and I helped carve it. He helped me carve the top off my pumpkin and throw away the guts. Walter helped clean out the pumpkins and he drew with a marker on a small sugar pumpkin.

Walter after eating a twix bar.
That night I hadn't planned on taking Dean out. We had some candy for trick-or-treaters, and since Dean had taken a nap, I let him help me hand out for awhile. (Walt was asleep before any trick-or-treaters came.)  He LOVED it. He was so excited to help hand out candy. He didn't even want to wait for them to knock, so we sat on our little mini-bench on our porch waiting for kids. I had to laugh, though, when I saw the wheels start turning about half way through the night. He had a package of skittles and a laffy taffy in hand ready to hand out; he was going to give the skittles and I saw him hesitate a moment, change his mind, and put in the laffy taffy. After the kids left, he said, "Dean wants to eat these skittles!" And then he started going through the candy, looking for all the "bad stuff" (ie. smarties and jolly ranchers) to hand out first so he could possibly save the good candies for himself. HAHA. I did the same thing the night before! (We handed out all of our "bad" candy at the trunk or treat, so what we had left was what I considered decent candy).

Anyway, at one point he said, "It's not Halloween, not for us!" And that made me feel a little guilty. So I asked if he wanted to go to a few neighbor's houses.  So, we put on his costume (over his pjs) and headed out to about 10 houses.  He tried giving his candy to the first three houses. It was very cute. On our walk, there was one mean middle schooler who had a horribly scary mask/costume. While they were walking he had it up, and when he saw Dean, he put it down and kind of came at him making noises. Punk. I said, "Come on, he's just a little guy!" and he laughed and walked off. At least Dean wasn't really old enough to really internalize and process it.

He ate a few pieces of candy the next day, and while his candy bag is still sitting on the counter, he and Walter have not asked for any candy since! I may just recycle candy into the stockings!!! Does that make me a bad mom? =)

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

I think that sums it up.

Today I had institute at the church, so Dean and Walt were in the nursery for a little over an hour. When it was over, I asked Dean if he was a good boy. He said "Dean threw toys at other kids." I said, "Oh, that makes me so sad. We don't want to hurt other kids. Kids don't want to be our friend if we hurt them or throw toys at them. You want to have friends, don't you."  He replied, "No, Dean don't want any friends. Dean only want you. You are only one person. Dean want you to come to preschool and nursery and everywhere Dean goes."

So often it seems like he hates having Walt around, and I honestly think a lot of that stems from him wanting me all to himself. I hope they can be better friends once he moves past this stage.