Tuesday, September 27, 2011

2011 County Fair

Oh how I love when the fair comes. To me, the fair is more than just the auctioning of livestock and the fun of the carnival rides. To me, the fair signifies the beginning of the fall. That means weather cooling off, time for baking, and friday night football games. In fact, I distinctly remember being in highschool at the football game and seeing the lights of the fair and just waiting for the game to be over so we could all head over for some fun.

I could NOT wait for the fair to come this year! Last year I had Ry during the fair weekend and then was way too sick after to make it to it at all. This year was going to be different. We were going to enjoy the fair, and you better believe that we did!

Nearly every lunch and dinner was eaten at the fair and we probably consumed more navajo tacos than should be allowed. After being rained out and a little bit sick one night, otherwise engaged at a certain lil dude's bday party another night, we were bound and deteremined to get use of the tickets we bought for the rides because there was a strict NO REFUNDS policy on the final night. The result: one pretty thrilled 3 year old going on carnival rides for the first time ever, and a 1 year excited by the lights and noise but pretty mad he wasn't able to partake in the fun as well.

We were sad when the fun left town, but our pocketbook probably appreciated it!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Ryder's 1st Birthday!

If I was a better mom I wouldn't be a week and a half late posting about Ryder's birthday celebration! We had the fair, football games, work, shopping, and all the everday living stuff that has kept us busy, and me late on posting. It may not seem that long ago to you, but I swear my memory of Ry's big day has already faded some. Sad, but true.

Ryder woke up bright and early to a house decorated with banners, balloons, and hanging tissue paper flowers in a white, yellow, light green, and light blue color scheme. He made the appropriate oohs and aahs so the time spent up late the night before seemed totally worth the trouble.
I was out of stuff to make him special birthday chocolate chip pancakes, but being that he IS only ONE I didn't think he would care-or remember-so much. His daddy however couldn't believe I wasn't making them (maybe because he wanted some? I'm not sure....) so he ran to the store and got the stuff for me to make them. Of course they were a big hit and a huge mess, but oh well, nothing is too good for the birthday boy.

The cake and decorating had been done the day before, so the morning and afternoon of Ryder's birthday were spent doing a few last minute things for that evenings pizza party along with some lunch and quality time at the fair.

Pizza and breadsticks were picked up and brought home from Little Caesar's in Show Low that I just warmed in our oven for the party. The pizza was probably one of Ryder's favorite parts of the day. He LOVES it! Not only was Ry surrounded by his parents and brother there was also most of his grandparents and a few aunts and uncles. So much love in one room for that one sweet boy!

After the yummy dinner we thought we'd wait until we weren't so full for cake, and open presents. As usual, way too much! Spoiled? Um, yes. Because Ryder still chooses not to walk we bought him a toy that is meant for him to walk behind in the hopes that it would inspire him to do it on his own eventually. Everything else he received was from everyone else. There were lots of noisy toys (boo) and toys that will help him learn a thing or two.

Ry was pretty interested in opening gifts, but Brody was even more so. He "helped" Ry open everything and lucky for Ryder, Brody also "helps" him play with them too. In fact, everytime Brody plays with one of the new toys Ryder lets out the most loud ear-piercing scream with his legs stretched out in front of him stiff as a board. The noise is beyond description really. It makes you ALMOST wish that there was something similar to a bark collar that he could wear....(hehehe)

After presents we stripped Ry down to just a diaper knowing the mess that would ensue as he ate his caterpillar cake. He liked the cake OKAY. I don't know if he was just tired from the long day, but he didn't really seem to want the cake all that much. He even cried in his highchair for a while. I think he enjoyed his pizza more than his cake!

After getting hosed down in the kitchen sink, putting on jammies, and having a bottle it was off to bed for our sweet little ONE YEAR OLD! It was a fun day. A long day. Ry won't remember it so I don't know why we go to all the trouble, but we wouldn't have it any other way!

2 boys. One is 3. One is 1. Its a pretty fun time!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Growing Bigger and Stronger

There are definitely some good things about having your kids around the same time of year. One is that all the clothes that fit Brody fit Ryder at the same time. They are roughly the same sizes during the same seasons so I have had very few things to buy for Ryder (poor second child, I know). The other beautiful thing is, I can schedule their yearly wellness check-ups at the same time. Instead of making the 90 mile round trip twice, I only have to make it once. Granted, having to plan one birthday party and make a cake and then turning around and doing it so soon again doesn't leave much 'recovery' time for mom, but the benefits of them being born around the same time far out weigh the disadvantages.

So over to the the pediatrician's office we went on Monday. Brody was scheduled for his 3 year wellness check-up, and Ry was scheduled for his 1 year wellness check-up. I knew Ryder was due for shots (4 to be exact) and was prepared for his screaming. What I didn't know we were going to have to do was take Brody to get his blood drawn because now the dr.'s like to do that yearly to check for lead poisoning (?) and a couple other things too I think. Brody was pretty tough through it all and only whined for about a second when they put the needle in and that was it.

Besides doing the lovely shots, they got examined, weighed, and measured. This is always something I look forward to because I love seeing how much they have grown and how much their growth stacks up against the kids their age. I see them with my own eyes everyday and know that they are growing, but its nice to see it written down. AND its definitely nice to hear from the pediatrician that your kids are as perfect as you think they are.

Brody's 3 year stats:

Height- 38inches - 59%

Weight- 34.4lbs. - 74%

Ryder's 1 year stats:

Height- 30inches - 57%

Weight- 24lbs. - 68%

Both my boys have averaged out some, so I was surprised to see that their weight was up again for their age. I was really REALLY surprised that Brody's weight was higher for his age than Ryder's was because Brody has become a finnicky eater lately that I have to constantly tell to 'take another bite' or 'eat your dinner' or 'chew your food', while Ryder polishes off all of his food and feels that anybody else's food left within his reach is completely fair game.

Overall, our boys are growing great! Bigger and stronger each day. The doctor seemed to feel that the progress they are making is right on track, if not better, so we must be doing something right!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

What We Remember

Where were you on that September day? I'll bet you know exactly what day I'm talking about without me even saying it was 10 years ago today. September 11, 2001. Other wise known as 9/11. Our modern day Pearl Harbor. Only on a larger scale. Hitting our mainland-something never done before. Something I don't think most Americans believed anyone would even DARE do to us.

So where were Trevor and I when our country's safety was compromised? He and I were both clear across the country in our little Arizona hometown. I was 16. A junior in highschool. Sleeping in the comfort of my own home when the first towere was hit. I absolutely hate waking up to an alarm beeping at me. Its the quickest way to make my day start off bad. I always have my alarm set to the radio. My radio went off nice and early and in my groggy state I remember not hearing music, but hearing news of the tower being hit. They weren't sure what had happened. Was it a plane malfunction? I don't think my naive self even really knew what the World Trade Center was at the time. I walked downstairs in my pajamas to find my step-dad sitting on the edge of the couch watching the t.v. The t.v. and John being downstairs that early wasn't normal. I sat on the arm of the couch and watched quietly with him. If I remember correctly I was up just in time to watch as another plane crashed into the second tower. It was the craziest thing to be watching. We couldn't even look away. I remember saying so many times that I needed to get ready for school, but I just couldn't stop watching. At some point, in a daze I imagine (because I don't even remember doing it), I threw myself together and got to school. There in the hallways all of us kids were talking about what was happening to our country. I don't remember much about any lessons that day. Probably because there weren't lessons being taught. There were t.v.'s on in the classrooms. They were our teachers that day. I remember specifically 2 of the 7 classes. One was my American History class in the morning. We watched the t.v. and I thought, "I am watching American History happen in my history class." At some point in the day while we were watching the news I remember specifically watching footage of firefighters on some ground level of a building and we kept hearing these loud crashes. We didn't know what they were at first until the news explained that it was people jumping from the buildings. I couldn't even imagine the horror they must have been going through to make them choose to jump as a better option. Later that afternoon I sat in a darkened psychology class. It was normally a rowdy class. Not then. It was quiet. It was shock. That's how most of the day was spent. Quiet. In total disbelief. I may not have been in NY at the trade center, or in Pennsylvania at the Pentagon, or in one of the crashed airplanes, but I felt the sadness. I felt like I was directly attacked. It was scary.

Trevor was 18. He had graduated highschool a few months earlier and was working on the grounds at the school. He and 2 other guys were working when another worker came down to them to tell them that the first tower had been hit. They worked for a few minutes more and then decided to head up to the shop to watch what was going on. Once they were there they watched the second plane crash. Trevor's co-worker had previously been in the airforce and once that second plane hit the first thing that came out of his mouth was, "It's Osama Bin Laden." That was not even a name Trevor knew at the time. Unless you knew politics or were involved in the military Osama Bin Laden was not the household name at the time. This day is the day that he became more known to us. Terrorists or terrorism is not something we really had heard of before this time.

It's been 10 years. I can't imagine how those families feel that have lost loved ones that they were never even able to give proper funerals to. I know I still get sick when I even think about the hatred those people must feel towards the U.S. enough to want to hurt so many innocent people. I can't believe that my own kids will someday sit in a classroom with history books in front of them, and read about something Trevor and I have lived through and have distinct memories of. Someday I may even have a grandchild come ask, "Grandma were you alive when 9/11 happened? Do you remember about that day?"

Thank you to people who served and fought for our country then, before then, and now. Your sacrifices, and your families sacrifices are more appreciated then I think could ever be put into words.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Letter to Ryder

Dear Ryder,

Before this week is over you will be ONE! How is that even possible? I have heard from so many people to enjoy your kids because it goes by so fast. They were not wrong. It has gone by so fast! Even though your first year of life was 365 days long, just like your brother's first year, yours seemed to go by twice as fast! Seriously. I'm kinda sad about it. It makes me wonder if we have a third baby if his/her life will go by 3 times as fast?

Wow, so much to say about you little man. You fit our family perfect. I love having a baby in our home, and its sad that you are quickly learning and growing and becoming so much less our baby.

Its safe to say that you are more challenging to me. I think when I really look at other people's kids, you are not challenging at all, so I don't know if its because I have two of you wearing me out or if its just that you do things way more differently than your brother.

Speaking of differences... I know that I constantly compare you to Brody. I want you to know (obviously not now, because you are too little, but someday...) that I don't compare you to make either one of you feel like you are deficient or lacking in some areas while the other one shines. I do it for two reasons. One, after having kids I have seriously lost some brain molecules or something. I have a hard time remembering who did what and at what stage. By writing it down and comparing I can keep it together! The second and biggest reason I compare, is because I've been told that every child is born with their own distinct personalities. My Brody Boy and Ry-ry are no exception to this! You both are your own little individuals and I love to see how you learn differently or how you handle situations.

Ryder, you are the typical 2nd child. You are much more relaxed at about everything. Your brother would tend to just do things without a second thought. He walked, got teeth, everything, without much trouble. You little one are a little different. Its just like when I had you. I was dialated 5 weeks before you came, I was ready, you were ready, BUT you needed a little nudge. I had to be induced before you would come. You-I KNOW- are ready to walk, for example. You hold on to the furniture and walk around it, you love when you can walk behind the basket with wheels on it and go all over the house, but you just don't want to walk. Today your dad even stood you up and let go without you realizing it and you stood their for quite a while....until you saw he wasn't holding you and you immediatley sat down. YOU CAN DO IT!!!! I guess you'll just have to be nudged.

You still just have 2 teeth. That doesn't hold you back from eating. If we get sub sandwiches for dinner I get a footlong and have it cut into 4 pieces. I eat 2, Brody eats 1, and the other one usually gets wasted, until now. I decided to try letting you eat some. You ate a WHOLE piece to yourself! That was more than Brody ate! Hahaha. You never slow down when it comes to eating. Your dad thinks he may have to get a second job to support your eating habits! If this is how much you eat now, we can only imagine what it'll be like with you as a teenage boy.

I have noticed lately that you seem to be a critical thinker. You see Brody's legos and you try to fit the pieces together. You can't do it, but somehow you know they should fit. We also have a ton of wooden blocks. There is one particular piece shaped kind of like a doughnut and another like a long cylinder. You will work and work until you can make the cylinder piece fit into the whole of the doughnut piece. Another toy you've recently discovered is the barrel of monkeys. You dump out the monkeys and then put the monkeys back in, but your favorite part is trying to make the lid fit back on the barrel. It amazes us that you know these things.

You aren't saying any words but you do like to mimic us. You'll make noises or faces that we make to you. You wave hi and bye. You don't say our names but you seem to know who we are talking about when we say dad or mom or Brody. You love to play peek-a-boo and games where we chase you all through the house.

Ryder you are such a joy. You make us all laugh. People stop us all the time to say what a cute little boy you are, and we have to agree! Happy Birthday big little boy.