Saturday, April 30, 2011

Play Ball!

It's spring...time for team sports! Adam is playing soccer again, but this year Andrew decided he wanted to try baseball. Although the season is already a month old, it feels as if we're still just getting started. Games are only once a week; and with rain cancellations, sickness, and holiday breaks, today was only Andrew's third game and Adam's second.

Here are the boys clowning around before one of their games. (Adam may or may not be "shaking his booty like a chicken." I am too mortified to tell.)

Adam's first soccer game. He had a great time and stayed pretty focused.

Andrew listening to the coach's instructions. I love this picture.

Even Libby has a good time at the games! Here she is with a friend from church at their big brothers' soccer game.

Steve and I love the league the boys play in. It's through our "mother church," and the focus is on sportsmanship, not winning. They don't even keep score (officially...just ask the moms if you want to know the score, though!) for the younger ages. I like that the boys are learning how to be part of a team, learning how to respect and take instructions from a coach, learning skills so they know their way around a ball field, and learning that winning is fun but it isn't everything.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Eine Kleine Nachtmusik

"Jingle Bells"

"Jesus Loves Me"

"If You're Happy and You Know It"

"Sing Sweet Nightingale" (from "Cinderella")

Each night Libby treats us to an extremely loud concert after we put her in bed. Although her repertoire is limited, there are many encores. Many, many encores. And while sometimes it is frustrating that she remains so wide-awake long after bedtime, it tickles me to no end to hear her so un-self-consciously belting out her crazy lyrics all alone in her room.

I believe we'll keep the baby monitor around for a while longer.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The World According to Adam

Me: Watch that tomato sauce. I don't want it to stain your shirt.

Andrew: Will it stain forever and ever?

Me: Yes, so be careful.

Adam (chiming in): Oxyclean will get that out!

Adam hands Steve a piece of paper on which he has written: AHJSKRIUWLKEEPFJJJPPKJSENCWJTR.

Adam: Can you tell me what this says?

Steve: Hmm. I'm not sure. Why don't you tell me what it says?

Adam: I can't. I don't know how to read yet.

For Easter I always make cutout cookies and decorate them with icing. This year I decorated a few of the egg-shaped cookies with crosses.

Adam: I'm going to eat this cookie with the X on it 'cause that's where Jesus died for our sins.

Reporting to Steve about Adam's day at preschool today:

Me: Daddy, Miss Ginger said that Adam had a good day at preschool!

Adam: Yeah, but the goodest days are when Poppa and Gangee are here. They let us eat candy and stuff!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Mr. & Mrs. Sweetpea

Congratulations to my brother Jordan and his bride, Cara! Last weekend they were married in a lovely outdoor ceremony in Arizona. Aren't they a beautiful couple?

THANKS TO THE GRANDPARENTS (more on that later), Steve and I were able to attend the wedding sans children -- our first kid-free trip together in over seven years. I have been getting a lot of flak from people for that: "WHAT? You've never been away alone together since you've had kids?" Well, no. I wasn't sure how or why until I started thinking it through. This is the first time in seven years that everyone is old enough to leave AND I haven't been pregnant with another one. And pregnancy + travel + me = yuck. But now all the kids can talk, potty, and get dressed by themselves. So it's not such a horrible imposition to leave them in someone else's care. (LIKE THE SUPER-AWESOME GRANDPARENTS.)

Anyway, on our fabulous adults-only vacation, Steve and I got to dress up and hang out with other grownups. (And get our pictures taken with cool cacti in the backgrounds, which we never get to do around here.)

We got to eat lunches in lovely outdoor courtyards like this one. Note the absence of playplaces. And children needing to be escorted to the bathroom.

We got to go on a really cool horseback ride through the desert with my sister Lindsay and her husband Kyle. Sadly for Lindsay, we could not find a mall on the trail. But she bravely stuck with the ride anyway.

We had a great time with family and friends, and Jordan and Cara's wedding was beautiful. Their pastor was amazing -- he conducted one of the loveliest wedding ceremonies I can remember.

Meanwhile, back at the homestead, Steve's parents graciously took on the job of keeping things running with three active little people.

There was some ice cream. (I do believe the ice cream man can retire based on the proceeds from those four days we were away.) Yes, I am aware that Andrew is not wearing any shoes. Let the record show I don't care.

There were trips to Sonic, where apparently the children were given hackey sacks to eat.

Before we left for Arizona, I created quite an impressive Manual for the Care and Keeping of the Nichols Children. While we were gone, Poppa created quite the hysterical document of his own, chronicling the life and times of our kids during our absence. Here are a few things Poppa learned:

General Observations:
Screams of delight and screams of anguish are hard to distinguish
Gangee generally gives in before Poppa and the kids know it
Remote control cars burn through the batteries (whew).
Poppa is MUCH more tired than gangee. Gangee has lots more energy than poppa.
Gangee dies at 8 pm…poppa goes to midnight

They do wear you out, don't they, Poppa? Seriously, we cannot thank Poppa and Gangee enough for the gift of a child-free vacation. People kept asking me in Arizona if I was worried about the kids or missing them too much. My answer: NOPE. My kids have totally hands-on, capable grandparents. I should probably be embarrassed by how little I worried once I set foot on that plane.

Now that we are home, I find myself thankful for several things:
1. The Moon girls have a new sister -- our first (and only)(and favorite) sister-in-law!
2. Steve and I had a refreshing time away together.
3. The weather was beautiful for the entire wedding weekend.
4. Steve's parents are still on speaking terms with us even after being left alone with our monsters children for four days. Probably because...
5. Andrew waited until they were gone for an hour before he threw up.

Back to reality!