Things have been getting awfully festive at our house lately! We put up our tree last weekend (after way more drama than I anticipated to get some white wire tree lights). Fred remembered just after we were done decorating that the box of presents his mother sent were not for under the tree, but on the tree. We opened them up, and amongst our annual ornaments, a gorgeous set of red crocheted snowflakes!!!! (you can see part of one in my new header). So. Excited.
There was also snowguy building! We had our first snow a week or two ago and the boys immediately got out an built a "snow guy". As you can see, 5 is pretty enamored...
Until he finally melted away a few days ago, every exit and entrance included a stop to put an arm around the snow guy. What a good friend my little dude is.
It's been two years. Two years with the sweetest, funniest, smartest little boy a mama could ask for. Definitely the two best years of my life.
This boy enjoys the simplest of pleasures.
Balloons? Coolest thing in the world.
Breakfast smoothie followed by getting to do the dishes? A real celebration indeed!
We celebrated with a little party for family and friends. There was bubble wrap to run on, tamborines and kazoos aplenty, and a cardboard tunnel leading to a balloon pit. 5 was into it. That alone made every minute of planning and cooking etc so very worthwhile.
And, there was, of course, cake. Chomp!
::These days are filled with raking, raking and more raking.
::These days are filled with overalls, flannel-lined goodness
(and plans for making more!)
::These days are all about leaf stomping- on the sidewalks, in the yard, in the parking lot, anywhere and everywhere.
::These days are full of requests for appole sidow (apple cider of course!)
::These days are full of more demands than requests, with a "please" tacked on occasionally...
::These days are full of appreciating every last second of fall.
What are your days filled with?
You know how once in a while, ever so seldomly, you have a day that is so perfect in every way, it's like from a storybook? We had one of those this weekend. It was sooo great. I seriously felt like I was in some kind of movie, or instructional book on what childhood is supposed to be like. Okay, enough with the reflections.
We took 5 to an apple orchard for the first time on Saturday. I know, right? So picture-book-y! The weather was warmish, but with a wind that had just enough bite to let you know that Fall is coming.
The strange weather we've had this year meant that the crop was really small, but luckily for us, we were there on the perfect weekend when everything was good and ready and not gone yet.
As a pretty serious apple-lover, 5 really got into picking apples. The hard part was getting him to not take a bite out of every single one he picked.
Dad taught him how to look for bad spots and not to pick the rotten ones up off the ground. Important stuff.
There were wagons. There was uneven terrain. For a boy who loves "bumps", this was his idea of heaven.
We packed a little picnic lunch and 5 regaled us with tales of apple-picking heroics while we ate.
This was such a special orchard- not only were there many varieties of apples to choose from, there were also sheep! 5 did not want to put his hand ANYWHERE NEAR that sheep's mouth, but he encouraged Dad to feed the sheep a grape. This is something we are still talking about. Yesterday, upon waking in the morning, 5 says to me "sheep. grape, dad. bite. chomp!" and so on...
There were also grapes to be picked! We weren't going to get any, but 5 wandered over after lunch and sampled one and freaked out at how good they were. So naturally, we picked some grapes.
I feel like I'm ready for Fall now. School's in, apples harvested, bring on the cardigans.
The summer is flying by so fast! It's a bit late, but I thought I'd try to catch up a little...
While I'm away at work all day, 5 and his Dad go on adventures! Every day! They go to the river, fish, bike all over town, walk to the coop for bananas, and get up to all kinds of mischief.
(5 is wearing one of his most recent mama-made tanks, refashioned from one of my favorite old T-shirts).
Also, since my last post, 5 has become obsessed with "counting". His method of counting is whimsical at best- there's usually a color or two thrown in and he repeats his favorite numbers at will. So far, I am loving 21 month old math.
He has become an avid copycat, repeating the most entertaining words uttered in any given sentence (read: watch. your. mouth. mama.)
My favorite August development though is his newfound use of the words big and tiny. Tiny especially, because it's all his. Fred and I don't say tiny. Our books don't say tiny. We're really not sure where it's from. But we love to hear everything in our lives that is now big or tiny.
The best parts of my day? The hugs and kisses I get leaving and then returning from work. The boy has really learned to show some love.
In the past, I have totally dreaded the sound of a sniffle, mainly because it means I will have to choose between hearing my child choke on his own snot and using the bulb syringe.
5 would always cry with that mixture of anger and betrayal that makes me feel like such a horrible mother even though I knew I was helping...
With the onset of this cold, however, when I pulled out the bulb syringe, I did have to trick him into letting me do it the first time, but after that he offered up his nostrils willingly! He even brings it over to me in the morning. I'm a little confused as to how two obstinate, non-lesson-learning people such as Fred and myself could possibly have produced a child with the capacity to understand that the discomfort of the bulb syringe is cancelled out by the regained ability to breathe.
I could be over-thinking it though, maybe he just decided it was fun. He certainly delights in attempting to use it on me.
We had such a lovely Easter weekend! Fred was off on Friday and it was sunshine-y and not too cold so we had three whole days to frolic about and enjoy family adventures! We went to Lake Superior (just like last year's Easter), and hiked down into the Swedetown gorge where 5 got to throw the biggest rocks he could lift into the water, and Hungarian Falls where these shots were taken.
It's a bit of a scramble down to the falls, but if I could do it 8 months pregnant, I figured I could do it with a monkey on my back.
I was right.
The boys took off their shoes and socks and bravely (foolishly?) plunged their feet into the super frigid water.
5 found that he (big surprise) preferred playing with mud and throwing rocks to the hypothermia-inducing water.
They did manage to pull themselves away from rock throwing long enough to climb up as close as they could get to the falls (and it was pretty close- they got rather wet) for a little photo op. Those sweet boys of mine.
How did you celebrate the Easter/Passover/beautiful weekend?
I am still a complete dooze from now 2(!) nights of no sleep, so today, we are going to enjoy my son's fabulous and whimsical sense of style...
"What? Oh, yeah, of course I'm wearing a sports bra as a necklace, I need the support."
"Yeah I only have one sock on, my right foot isn't cold, yo."
"OK Mom, no more sitting, no more cameras, I got to RUN!"
Oh, it started out as one of those days. Actually, I guess it started out as one of those nights- last night, just as I was getting ready to turn out the light and fall asleep at a reasonable hour...
The dreaded sign of true Spring in Hancock appeared- one of our supposedly harmless but absolutely terrifying huge spiders started attempting to haul its massive self up the wall in front of my face. Early bedtime, restful night of sleep- gone, all gone!
After reading myself to the point of utter exhaustion, I lapsed into a restless sleep punctuated by startled bouts of vigilance, only to be awoken by my darling husband's alarm that had been set to snooze after he got up.
Oh, the feeling of being trapped underneath a light-sleeping baby, trying to decide which is more likely to awaken the sleeping babe- moving him and finding the offending alarm or waiting the half hour for Fred to notice it's still going off?
In the end, 5 and I were both begrudgingly awake for the day- not our best start...
We were both kind of grumbly and crabby and whiny all morning until we collapsed into a very early nap. And then, something kind of magical happened.
The sun came out.
There was no crying for a little while.
I ate a good lunch.
And then, it wasn't so bad. 5 woke up and instead of grumpy we were just kind of silly and dopey.
Not such a bad afternoon.
And as day turned into night, 5 decided to turn in early (like before it got dark early) and I'm thinking I should do my best to follow suit. If the spiders will let me....
We are, in fact, no longer in beautiful Hawai'i, we are safe and sound in our own unseasonably warm home. However, we are also wandering blindly in the fog of Jet Lag City, so let's just pretend we're going shelling today!
My husband and his sister have many fond childhood memories of shelling at this "beach"- entire afternoons spent squatting near tide pools looking for the perfect tiny cowrie while listening to the sound of their necks and shoulders slowly scorching...
The trails they used to take down had disappeared, but we were able to find this only partially imagined trail after some searching.
As a borderline fabric/fiber hoarder, I have to be very careful to not let any other collections take root, so I am not a sheller. After a few minutes of walking around and enjoying the view, I wised up and let Fred introduce 5 to shelling while I documented it.
5 mostly enjoyed the wetter aspects of shelling.
He was also way into the delicious salty flavors.
The smoother areas were quite nice for those of us who tend to let gravity get the best of us.
It was a lovely day!
My name is Ansley Knoch. I am the creator of Rispok, a line of accessories for big and little people made from repurposed materials. I live in Madison, Wisconsin with my husband, Fred, and our son, also Fred, better known as 5.