Friday, June 25, 2010

Havin' Fun at Grana & Grandpa's

We've been having a nice time in Idaho so far. I snapped some pictures of the boys playing outside on Wednesday... it was really bright out so I started playing around with the different settings on the camera - everything from foliage to aquarium to color swap. That's why the coloring looks a little different on some of them. Anyway, the boys were having a great time.

Brennan has also been very excited about all the legos Grana has.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day

I feel bad that I didn't make Father's Day anywhere near as special as Brian made Mother's Day. The problem is, there isn't a whole lot I can do to spoil him. It's not like I could take over his duties for the day. If I had though, it would have involved giving a talk at church today. Thankfully, I'm not generous enough to volunteer to take that away from Brian and he did a great job! The primary sang a song in Sacrament meeting, as well as the Relief Society, so Asher's the only one of us who didn't participate in some way :-)

I'm super backed up about stuff I want to post on the blog, but tonight it sufficeth me to say, HAPPY FATHER'S DAY Brian, and thank you for being the wonderful husband and father that you are!

Also, a Happy Father's Day to the other men in my life. For some reason, I have been extremely blessed to have great males in my life - from fathers (Dad, Grandpas etc), to inlaws, and even down to brothers-in-law- who are awesome fathers and great guys. The world needs more men like my male family members!!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Another Graduate in the Family

Last week Brennan finally graduated. It was a long, hard season of his life, spending a few hours 3 days a week glueing, running, clapping, playing, and learning. Ah yes, we’ll never forget those precious preschool years.

Having witnessed first hand both of his parent’s graduations, Brennan was a little nervous about his. When I excitedly told him that he would be having a preschool graduation, he worriedly asked, “how am I going to know what to say?” What? Didn’t they tell you you’d be the key-note speaker? He was also concerned about knowing where to go and basically how to do the whole thing. I remember thinking the same things at my own commencement ;-)

Asher was always happy to enter the walls of the preschool, and this day was no exception. He mostly hung out in the designated young-sibling area, but the highlight was the cake I think.

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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Learning to Read

I love nearing/reaching milestones with my kids. Why is it so intrinsically joyous to watch our children progress? I don't know. I think it's one of those few altruistic capacities available to humans.

Where I so often discuss Asher's speech progression, Brennan's current milestones are in his learning to read/spell. It wasn't that long ago that I finally taught him how to spell his name and he just took off from there. A few weeks ago he told me that he knew how to spell "book" (which he does) and when I asked how he learned that, he told me from (the TV show) Word World. We've been working on reading inconsistently the last few weeks, but Brennan seems to just progress on his own even on days I slack. Like, he read "pop" on his cereal box and came to me to spell it, as well as seeing, reading, and spelling for me FOX as seen on the TV channel. (Yeah, TV is coming up a lot in this, eh? I think Brennan is a visual learner, actually). Just two days ago Brennan got up and came down stairs and instead of saying "good-morning" he said, "I know how to spell bad... b-a-d." I asked him where he'd learned it, and he responded that he was laying in bed thinking about it and figured it out. Each day he rehearses the words he knows well, and tries new ones, and constantly asks me how to spell simple words.

I guess my favorite part is that Brennan is excited about it. I was a little worried, to be honest. I think he's a smart enough child, but I've had a hard time putting my finger on his learning style. Asher had demonstrated amazing ability to pick things up through songs, or just what he hears, like a parrot, but with Brennan it all just comes when he's ready and I can't predict it. I've worried that he wouldn't be "ready" to learn to read until the later end of the spectrum. It is so exciting to see Brennan not only learning this skill, but practicing on his own and enjoying it. I don't have to push or prod. When the student is ready, the teacher will come. Well, teacher (hey, ME!), hurry up and come 'cause the student is as ready as he'll ever be!

Asher's Speech Continues...

I love the way Asher has learned to talk. He just jumped right in to full sentences, so that most of what he says is a regular phrase, but it's still mixed with fillers or words that are wrong. Until recently ALL beverages were "milk" but he added "juice" in finally. Still, when he accidentally got splashed yesterday by a wet item being emptied from the dishwasher he complained about getting hit with milk. And when we pass horses or cows he cries, "Look, Moo's!" On the other hand, he likes to ask me while we're driving, "You buckled, Mom?" and spurts out all sorts of concept-based phrases which I can never remember when I'm writing these.

Asher is HUGE into the "me-do-it" phase. If it can be done at all, (and often when it can't) HE's going to be the one to do it. I'm a lot more patient with him than I was with Brennan in a lot of ways. For the most part, I indulge Asher his wishes because he actually does a great job. He knows how to get his clothes on the correct way, and is always MORE than happy to get his socks and shoes on. Yesterday I noticed him trying to hold the door open for Brian and I... so cute!

Some down-sides though are that Asher thinks it's his right to remove his diaper any time he wants to, and it's a BATTLE to get him in to his carseat because he wants to play around the car first, then demands he gets himself into and buckled up in his seat. Obviously, coming and going are those times when time is of the essence, so "me-do-it" competes with Mom-do-it" quite a bit.

I think I'm going to have a problem potty-training Asher. Here's the awesome part: Asher LOVES sitting on the toilet. Any chance he gets, he'll strip that diaper and sit down. He loves to grab a small piece of toilet paper, throw it in, and flush, followed by his other favorite activity: washing hands. However, the problem is that he thinks it's a 4 second-long game. He is so darned used to playing it that I can't get him to sit for more than about 30 seconds. He has never once actually produced any potty for the toilet, although he thinks he does every time he's sitting down. I tried one day a few weeks ago to have him bare-bottomed and I set him on the potty every few minutes (since he wouldn't stay on). He peed all over the dining room chair he was standing on anyway. I originally thought I'd try to have my next (after Brennan) child potty-trained around 2 years old, or sooner if I could swing it. Then I decided I really didn't care. Changing diapers really isn't that big a deal, and you never have to worry about accidents in difficult places or at inopportune times. I've noticed for a while though that Asher seems ready in many ways and I think he could actually do it... if I could only figure out a way to make it a little less of a game.