Monday, March 31, 2008

A Good Find, A Great Buy

Saturday was a full day...

First I went to a baby shower, or a nesting party they were calling it, for Kate Mitchell and I had to share these cute party favors that Lindsay Scrogham made in honor of the theme:

After that the family piled in the car for a trip out to little Baraboo, WI, a little more that 2 hours away. Why? Because Travis has been wanting a punching bag to go with our weights for a long time and he finally found a deal on eBay. In fact, it was a great deal, and not difficult to win since it was a pick-up only item in nowhere, WI. Altogether the whole set-up prices out at almost four times what we paid for it. Nice hunting Travis.
Avery loves it too, I think we'll have to investigate some child sized gloves...

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Birthday Boy!

Yesterday, the 28th, was Carson's 1st birthday! He had chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting and colorful sprinkles... and they were really that big!! :) He was rather unsure of the squishy thing when it was first put on his tray, especially after he realized it was sticky too. Then Daddy picked up a piece and fed it to him. Mmm... Mommy and Daddy even let him have a second one.And of course Avery had a much better time enjoying Carson's cupcakes than Carson had just having to watch Avery eat his cake back in December!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Happy Birthday Grandma B!

Happy Birthday Mom! I love you! And Avery and Carson love their Grandma Benjamin! Here's a quick card Avery "helped" me make.


After being brilliant remembering some complicated things from yesterday, Avery showed his true genius... (yes he got there on his own, no he couldn't get out on his own).


Yesterday we went back to the Milwaukee Public Museum for the second time in Travis' break (it's free on Mondays to county residents), but this time we went for Bodyworlds! It was very cool. Right up our interest alley. It would have been better without the kids of course, but they managed. Avery needed a lot of constant chatter to keep in in check, but he clearly found it interesting, if a little long. He also definitely learned some things as all that chatter was a lot of anatomical and organ system explanation coming from me. Today the first time he had to go to the bathroom he informed me how pee was made starting all the way at the heart pumping blood. Then when he was having breakfast he told me about that particular pathway too. Highly amusing!
When we were done at Bodyworlds we had just enough time left on our parking meter to stop in at Avery's favorite museum spot, the butterflies.
This butterfly enjoyed Avery's head for quite a while!
I didn't notice at the museum that this butterfly was anything but black, white and orange until I saw the pic and realized it's blue-black. Then, turning the pic black and white and bringing back the color brought out the bright green spots on the body! Who knew?

Monday, March 24, 2008

Happy Easter!

Hope everyone had a great Easter!
First Avery discovered his Easter basket, then he got to hunt eggs with his Cars basket.
Carson was having fun, honest. Especially once he started banging the Easter eggs together.
I don't think Avery actually realizes how many of those wrappers have chocolate in them or he'd choose them more, but he can obviously recognize a sucker regardless of the wrapper so he always wants one of them. Of course, then he has to show off his colorful tongue and demand pictures so he can see it. I'm experiencing deja vu from a couple posts ago putting this pic up...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

2nd snowiest winter in Milwaukee

Yesterday, the first full day of Spring, we got a big snow storm for March. Milwaukee totals were 11" but where we're at we got about 14". The sad part was over the last week we were finally seeing grass again for the first time in I'm not even sure how long - early January? December?

Here is a clipping from NOAA and a map of snowfall with some added notes on it by me (average snowfall is 40-50"):


As of 1 am CDT, March 22nd, General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee had recorded 96.0 inches of snowfall. This amount ranked as the 2nd snowiest winter season on record at Milwaukee.

Below is a list of the top 20 winter season snowfall amounts for Milwaukee...


1 109.8 1885-86
*2* *96.0* *2007-08*
3 94.2 1897-98
4 93.3 1959-60
5 83.2 1973-74
6 82.9 1978-79
7 82.6 1903-04
8 81.9 1993-94
9 80.8 1922-23
10 80.7 1977-78

The totals for Madison and Milwaukee will only continue to the winter season still has the rest of March and into April remaining.

When we had about 6" on the ground this is what our eaves looked like:
In the morning the snow was gone...
...and so were the bushes! Time for the ugly things to come out I think.
Travis cleaning off the car. The snow was so heavy and wet that this was the easiest way to clear it off:It is Spring after all, why shouldn't Avery do proper Spring-time activities!
Remember I said we saw grass for the first time in forever this last week, well, I found some!

Friday, March 21, 2008

LaFleur's Gymnastics Part 2

Even though on this first day of Spring it was snowing like mad, we went back to LaFleur's anyway. Instead of the minivan convention with no parking available last time, we hoped to find up front parking. Sure enough I doubt there were ever more than 10 cars there. Unfortunately, maybe because of the snow, a team practice was moved to tot time and they had half the gym unavailable. That half included the 2 foam pits we spent most of our time at last week and where Travis got to do flying leaps into them. The pits on the side we were allowed to use didn't really accommodate flying leaps. 50% of the space...but we still had to pay full price... grumble grumble grumble. :)

This run was right before we left and he was tired enough to cut back to one somersault instead of two, so it was funny when he declared "I did it!" because he had already done this so many times!

Avery loved this bar, but just to hold onto and drop right away like he does on the 3rd "swing" in the video. It took quite a while for him to finally hold on long enough to enjoy the swing.

Carson was quite proud of himself for climbing into and tumbling out of this:
Carson LOVES jumping on the trampoline:

Sunday, March 16, 2008

LaFleur's Gymnastics

Travis started Spring break last Thursday and to start the fun we went to LaFleur's Gymnastics center. The have Open Tot Time for 2 hours Thursdays and Fridays when you can take you kids to play on all the equipment (You pay per child; adults are free). There's lots of fun things including giant trampolines, a few pits full of large foam blocks that the kids can swing into on a bar at one or just jump into at the others, and all the other standard gymnastics equipment you can think of.
Afterwards, Travis informed me he had not thought the outing would be terribly exciting, but it turns out we fulfilled some basic childhood needs for him! He can't remember ever playing in a ball pit or similar, so he took great advantage of leaping in to one of the foam pits with Avery and Carson. Now, he's looking forward to going again next Friday for a last time before school starts again (and because I forgot the camera and obviously need some shots of all that fun!) So, pics are forthcoming...

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Sleeping on a Cloud

Sleeping on a cloud must be what Carson was dreaming about last night. When Travis went in to make sure the boys were covered up before we went to bed he had to retrieve me first. He thought I might find difficulty covering Carson up... and after I saw what happened he added "because there are no spares to throw on top!" Avery had climbed high enough to get down all the blankets stacked in the top of their closet and all the little receiving blankets out of the dresser and thrown them in with Carson. Carson is notorious for always bunching up and sleeping on top of whatever blanket is in his crib... but this takes the cake. He sure looked comfortable tho! I'm glad he's a heavy enough sleeper that I could pull them all out from under him so he could have the firm mattress he needs instead of all that fluff.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Charcoal Kiss

What a crazy, messed up day yesterday was! Avery decided to chug some children's cough syrup. I thought the bottle was up, in fact it was, but I forgot there was a little one on my nightstand! It's a big "no no" to be in Mommy's room, and a bigger one to touch anything on Mommy or Daddy's nightstand, but darn it that cough syrup just tastes too darn good. Anyway, it wasn't a full bottle, I just don't know how much was gone, and there was still some in it, so it's hard tellin' how much Avery drank, but according to poison control a little under an ounce is toxic at his size and it was a 3 oz. bottle.
Off to the ER.
Thank goodness for friends I could dump Carson on! It also worked to Travis' afternoon patient's benefit to cancel her appt. too so that worked out for everyone and Travis joined us later in the ER. Avery got to drink some activated charcoal (no pumping or forced puking, it just absorbs and moves thru - just to get a little graffic for you there) which he chugged down and afterward informed me that he liked it!!! UGH! Blech! Insane? Yes, I think he is. Avery was also hooked up to a cardiac monitor and stuck there for a 4 hour minimum. That was stressing in the beginning - not because that sounds serious, but because I wasn't sure if keeping him planted in the hospital bed (complete with hospital gown!) was going to go over so well with him. Two things worked in our favor there: 1) Sesame Street, etc. on TV and 2) apparently the drug in the syrup is a depressant and after a while (before TV got boring) Avery started getting awfully mellow, and eventually quite glassy-eyed. Not so great a sign, but he bounced out of it shortly before the 4 hour monitor minimum was met and we were discharged in fairly shortly after the 4 hours.
Believe me, this tongue is WAY better than it was. It was solid black down to the tip for quite a while. The crusty black around his mouth wouldn't come off with anything until I took my nail and scraped away the worst of it! YUK!
But look how happy he was. I rather think the experience was entirely too UN-scary. Avery already enjoys the doctors, and this didn't even give us the benefit of the charcoal being gross to him or being stuck in the bed a hardship. *sigh*
Avery was actually feeling so good and had so much pent energy (I guess from not getting to use any that day? rather than being exhausted by the ordeal?!) that we went the the party that night for Travis' clinic at school. Avery got to bowl and had a generally good time! First thing he said to me this morning was that we had to play bowling again with his toys. (Of course I'm a dunce and didn't take the camera to get a picture of his first time bowling. Oh well, maybe Travis' clinic coordinator got something in all the shots she was taking)

Moral of the story. Even if you think all the dangerous stuff is out of reach or locked up, you never know if something has escaped your notice. Hopefully that's the last time something escapes my notice.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Fall Favorites

With my limited computer time and so much to do, I sometimes don't get to process batches of pictures until much after the fact, particularly if they're not pics of people! So here's some shots I enjoy from last Autumn.
I Love Autumn. :)
I love this gnarled old tree:
Here's a "spooky" tree. It reminds me of Sleepy Hollow:I love how the outline of these trees is somehow so fiery:

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

March, oh March

I used to like March. My Birthday month and all. Now that I have a toddler I rather think otherwise. Avery can be so delightful and then turn so wickedly awful right now. I think it has a lot to do with cabin fever; by March we're just all so sick of winter and the decreased accessibility of the outdoors that attitudes get a little manic. And doesn't his attitude just make my own sense of cabin fever even worse... Argh. I try and play with him a lot more which does help, but in the end there's just no substitute for getting out. These are definitely very difficult moments to be a Mom. *sigh* Spring, please come out and play...

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Baby Blessings

Today was one of those wonderful days when a baby was blessed. Our friends beautiful new girl, Kieley, received hers today and although she didn't think it was so great to begin with, it was a really beautiful blessing. I hope someone was able to write down the points (holding onto Avery and Carson while Travis was up there makes that a little difficult) because I know how nice it's been to have that written for each of my boys. Blessing are definitely a beautiful time to reflect on the miracle of creation, the responsibilities involved and the silent prayer for yourself that you can do justice by your beautiful, innocent child. Thanks for letting us be a part today, Kieley! :)