Happy Thanksgiving & Go Cougs!

Happy Thanksgiving from our Gang to Yours! 11.22.07

Collin stuffed this scarecrow himself, and every day since, he has gone out front periodically "to check" on his scarecrow. He's like a mother hen! Worried each night that someone might take his scarecrow, that his scarecrow is too cold, etc. He wanted to make sure his scarecrow would be covered, so he armed the scarecrow with a backpack with Cougar Gold cheese, a cell phone in his pocket, and gloves on his hands. : )

Big game Saturday! State rivalry against UW Huskies ~ GO COUGARS!


Scratch that!

If you - like I - had visions of our home filled with football gear, bicycles, and matchbox cars, it's time to add a doll house, a tutu, and pretty little ponies!

I arrived early for Friday's doctor appointment and was ushered into a room, sans Kevin. We finished the usual check-up, and Dr. Tu asked if I wanted to sneak a peak at our baby with the ulrasound in the room. Of course, I said, "Yes." The heartbeat was strong, and the baby was growing! Perfect!
Dr. Tu: "Why do you keep referring to your baby as a 'he'?"

Me: "Because four weeks ago, you already told us he was a boy."

Dr. Tu: "Oh ... Well, this baby is a girl ..."

Enter Kevin.

Kevin: "Hi! Sorry I'm late! Did I miss anything??"
After "confirming" that there's only one baby in there and receiving an explanation involving a swollen clitoris at 13 weeks, we're relatively certain we can proudly (re-)announce that:

Katelyn Victoria will be joining our family in April!


An Innocent Perspective: Princess Jasmine

In my all boy household, we have watched a lot of Elmo, a lot of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, etc. Our introduction to full-length movies included Cars, Finding Nemo, and Over the Hedge. No princes or princesses. Until we watched the beginning of Aladdin last night before bed. Jasmine was the first princess Collin met (oh, except Shrek's Princess Fiona, but she's an ogre!).

"Mommy, come here!" (almost in a whisper as he waves his arm to gesture me towards him)

"MOM (pointing to the tv) -- she's kinda naked!"

And so she is. Dressed in a bikini-style top and classic MC Hammer balloon pants.

Collin's resolution: "Maybe she's going swimming."

Is it time to talk about appropriate dress with my 3 year old boy?! Please say, No! I mean, I understand that Jasmine's "costume" is appropriate for the time/location of Aladdin's story. And I appreciate that Ariel is a mermaid, who lives in the water, when we first meet her and her sea-shell top. But please, Disney, keep the gals clothed -- thank goodness for Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella, who at least appeared chaste and innocent (although Sleeping Beauty refused to move until a man gave in to her utmost desire and Snow White lived with 7 other men before finding her Prince Charming).

*Interestingly, there is a point in the movie, as Aladdin is "soliciting" Jasmine on her bedroom balcony, when Aladdin whispers quickly, masked by music and flurry, "Take off your clothes!" It's one of the creators' hidden quirks. I've heard it myself - it's there. There was lots of media hype over it in 1994. At the end, one fact remained: no matter how it was tweaked by opposing sides of the debate, undeniably, the phrase is in the movie.


Belly Chats

I'm really starting to feel Penguin Feet (a name Collin gave the baby a few weeks ago that has kind of stuck with me!) moving in his cozy home. Just as his brothers were, he's busier at night and seems to roll around, getting his evening workout in. I wonder if he'll take on Belly-Kickboxing like Collin (who faced outward) or Intestine Tangling like Owen (who faced inward). I'm officially at the point in pregnancy where I start to love being pregnant, rather than dread it as I do the first 3-4 months! I love feeling the movements! Plus, much of my energy has returned, and I'm only occasionally sick ~ so I feel so great these days! (I'm 18 weeks and 2 days today ~ in the fifth month.)

As my belly has grown, so has the big brothers' interest in Penguin Feet. Owen pats my breasts and my belly and calls it all "baby." He seems to know "baby" lives in the belly only though because when he really wants to get up close to the baby, he lifts my shirt to expose the belly and gives kisses and hugs all over!

Similarly, Collin seems to have recognized that his own belly isn't growing at the same rate as mine, and I think he's given up on having a baby in his own belly. He seems content with that though as he has fallen in love with the baby in mine. I love it! He's constantly wanting to rub my belly and was the first to feel Penguin Feet move a few days ago (total luck and chance!). It was so cute! Collin often approaches me and asks: "Can I talk to my baby?" (his baby). Then he lifts my shirt, lays his cheek on my belly, and starts chatting away.

Monday's conversation went something like this:
"Hi, Baby! It's your brother Collin. I'm the biggest brother. How are you? Are you good? What are you doing in there? Are you playing? Have fun. Bye for now! Love you!"

Meanwhile, the name game continues. After a strong pull for Penguin Feet, Collin tried to name the baby Gavin, but we quickly discovered that Gavin and Kevin sound too similar. Kevin thought another soccer mom was asking him to touch his forehead to his knees during soccer practice, but (fortunately) quickly realized she was really asking her son Gavin to take the challenge! In that one moment, Gavin and Evan were removed from the list (add a K to Evan and you have Kevan). Luckily, Penguin Feet and Kevin do not rhyme.

We have our next appointment with the doc this Friday.


Soccer Star 11.4.07

Saturday's soccer game was a true delight! Collin chased the ball, kicked the ball, ran with the team, was on the floor the entire 20 minute game, understood that his team "needed him," and raced around with the proudest, happiest grin from ear to ear! Kevin was on his feet cheering the whole game, and I was in near tears as Owen and I clapped with a vengeance, jumping up and down out our seat in excitment!

For those of you have think I'm being over dramatic, Collin spent his first game standing still (not even turning as the ball passed) in the middle of the field for 3 minutes. He then sat with us on the sidelines the remainder of the game. The second game, he never even entered the field, laying in my lap on the sidelines and praying for his bed (naptime!). The third game, he entered the field, played a few minutes, touched the ball at kickoff, but then never chased the ball or showed any desire to be there. I felt awful because it seemed we were forcing him to play, and he hated it. But we know that is not what was going on because he talks soccer all week long and always says he's excited to go play. He always wanted to go, enjoyed the practice, but then once the game started, seemed anxious, tired, frustrated and out of place.

So, Saturday's game was a breakthrough! Credited to a few very specific changes: (1) For the first time all season, the game was after naptime (not smack in the middle of it)! He was fully rested and ready to play! I wish more games were so late in the afternoon! (2) Tuesday's practice had been led by a different coach who seemed to speak Collin's language: "Walk like a penguin and keep the ball between your legs as you travel down the field." "Ok, now Collin chase Gavin (who had the ball). Now switch, Gavin chase Collin." Suddenly, it was like several lights went on, and Collin's eyes grew big and he showed an understanding of how the game of soccer is played.

By Saturday morning, he was asking if Miss Kimberly was going to coach and if he could chase Gavin and try to get the ball! Just a few words to share that Gavin is on his team and he needs to chase the other team, and he was ready to go!

It was truly very exciting! And he has so much fun! Go, Collin!!!

Toilet Training 11.5.07

It is official! Owen is learning to pee in the potty! He's been testing it out for the past few weeks, but very sporadically. In the last two days, however, he has stepped it up a notch and started halting his play, yelling "gotta go pee - potty!" and running (usually running past the bathroom door, screeching to a stop, and sliding back into the bathroom). It is so fun, and everyone is so proud of him! At 21 and a half months! We'll see if he keeps up the streak - and if he decides to battle the Poo! Please, please, what a wonderful Christmas present that would be! A diaper-free household until April??


Pumpkin Carving 2007

The boys loved pulling the "puke" (thanks, Grandpa J!) out of their pumpkins this year! Collin diligently picked out his seeds, one by one, for roasting, while Owen spread the insides out on the table for everyone to see.
Once they were gutted, the boys attempted to draw "faces" on their pumpkins for carving. Notice Collin's pumpkin on the right has two very large eyes!

Then it was time to carve ... the lines became very blurry ... literally, because the pens were washable and much of the ink wiped right off!

Once carved, the boys finger-painted hair and added other design to their pumpkins (this too was washable and more fun than ultimately artistic. : )

Thank you for the balloons, Grandma and Grandpa T!

Collin's "Scary, Angry" Pumpkin

Owen's Pumpkin - With No Teeth, Just like Owen (who for the record, now has 10 teeth! He's popped out six in the last two months.)

Kevin's Pumpkin - The Boo Brothers!

Trick-Or-Treat! 10.31.07

Argh! The Pirate (or Robin Hood, depending on who you ask)
- The Cousin Gang -
Marley/Poodle Skirt BeeBopper
Collin/Captain Collin
Owen/Sheriff of Mahonia Place

First, we ransacked Old Town Fairhaven for tricks and treats! Owen completely understood the concept of receiving candy, but completely would not understand that he couldn't eat all the candy as he received it. Needless to say, he ate about six pieces and still cried most of the afternoon! Taylor was a hit and many ghosts and goblins stopped to have their pictures taken with her! Meanwhile, Marley and Collin ran from store front to store front admiring the many costumes and filling their sacks!After dinner, the big kids, Aunt Chrissy, and I hit the cul-de-sac to "treat or treat again!" We went to less locations but received nearly twice as much candy ~ seems it pays to know your neighbors (although in costumes, many were difficult to recognize!).
This was Collin's favorite stop ~ "I really liked that guy's costume! He was cool!" His next favorite was two more houses down ~ neighbor Joe was in full gorilla disguise! My personal favorite was a home decked out as a Pirate's Den, complete with treasure chests that opened as you neared and Pirates of the Caribbean music playing to set the mood. The Pirate opened the gloomy "gate" and took pictures of each set of treaters in exchange for the loot! It was great!

*Notice that Steve and Natalie/Fairy Butterfly joined us halfway down the block for our adventure!I was so proud of Collin. He did not exactly adhere to the "one treat per house" rule, but he did adhere to the "one treat per trip" rule and didn't spoil his dinner or his bedtime!