Jul 28, 2008

Torchlight 5k

Saturday night I ran/walked the Torchlight 5k in downtown Seattle, as part of Seattle's tribute to pirates and pirattitude, the Seafair Festival. It was a little humbling to realize that my fitness level does not yet include "whipping out a 3 mile run," but it was fun nonetheless, thanks to my friend Marie. She's trying to work up to running, and I'm trying to get back into it, so we were a perfect match. We did step it up for the final mile to pass the gimpy grandpa (good for him for running though), and finished under 37 minutes. Thanks Marie, next race we'll be running the whole thing!

Family of 5 survives overnight Camp Out

Aaahhh, the Ward Camp Out. Nothing quite like it. If you're not familiar with the concept of the Mormon Ward Camp Out, here is the basic formula: spend hours packing up all your gear, arrive around dinner on Friday night, only to pack up first thing in the morning and clear out by 10. That pretty much leaves you enough time eat your weight in S'mores, not sleep at all, and absorb that campfire smell in every thing you brought so that you have to do laundry for a week. And amazingly, we love it and look forward to it every year.

It was our first attempt at camping with Nate, and he did fantastic. We opted to squeeze everyone into our small 4 man tent, rather than our 4 family tent from Costco that is about the same size as our first apartment but has more rooms.
We enjoyed talking with friends and sitting around the campfire, and everyone slept soundly through the night, except me which is pretty much standard fare while camping, so no big surprise there. The next morning we decided to stay after everyone else had left because our kids didn't seem dirty enough, and we thought that hanging out at the river and playing with rocks and mud would remedy that situation. It worked well, and after a while felt sufficiently camped out enough to head home. I think we'll be ready for our next real camping trip, which we also always look forward to: Mt. Rainier over Labor Day weekend. In the meantime, we're still working on that pile of laundry. Oh, and eating the leftover S'mores fixings- yummmmm.

Jul 21, 2008

A day in the life, more or less...

One day last week I set out to document our entire day. I learned 2 things: 1. we are incredibly boring, and 2. the reason we don't have more pictures is because it's very hard to hold a camera when you are constantly cleaning up messes, refereeing fights, changing diapers, and getting food, sippies, etc. It's now been so long that I don't remember much of what else happened that day, but here are some moments I did capture:

No day can begin without Curious George.

Breakfast: actually in bowls with utensils that day, as opposed to the usual dry cereal in a plastic baggie, or even just straight out of the box (and then spread all over the floor).

Nate: still sleeping. Perfect child.

Sam taking a picture of Mia having a tantrum.

Brushing teeth and combing hair.

"I do it myself!"

Nate has been smiling a lot lately. My quest to capture it resulted in this Jabba-the-Hut-like smile.

Tummy Time

Reading Time, under plenty of dire threats from mom.

On our way to Costco.

Going in to Costco. Nate is in the sling, and Sam is not happy about being in the cart. Once we made it inside, they actually did amazingly well. That didn't stop 2 women from staring openly at me and whispering to each other while in line at the food court (what Costco trip is complete without the $1.50 hot dogs and churros?). I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they were amazed by how well behaved my kids were and how calm and collected I looked. Right?

"Quiet" Time.

Nate's first video. Sorry- it's sideways.

For staying in their rooms during quiet time, the kids get 10 chocolate chips each. Here is Sam (and the bathroom mirror), post chocolate indulgence. Not pictured: the door, the wall, and the stool, also covered in chocolate. All that from 10 chocolate chips?

Costco spoils: a box of 200 or so pushpops. Lesson learned: Sam should always eat pushpops naked.
Watering the lawn. Mia had just sprayed me (and the camera) with water and did not get a favorable response. Hence, the scowl.

Afternoon snack at the raspberry bush.

"The Witching Hour"- a video.

Dinner: no small miracle.

6:15: can we start bedtime yet?

One final meltdown. (I believe he wanted mom to put the toothpaste on the toothbrush, not dad).

Mia got to go on a special trip to Target to get a new Littlest Pet Shop toy for going to bed without tantrums 20 days in a row. Best $10 I ever spent.

Good night!

Jul 18, 2008


I truly don't get this kid. (How many times am I going to say that over the next 18 years?). Seriously, he took a late nap yesterday and consequently was up until midnight, and then was up bouncing on our bed at 6 this morning. He then refused to take a nap today, and now it is after 9 pm and guess who's still awake? Why don't parents have access to tranquilizers? Oh yeah, it's called Benadryl- I think I'm going to go look for some now...

Jul 16, 2008

A list of things done

I'm a list person. I love to make them; I love to read them. I'll read anything in list form. You could make a list of things in your junk drawer and I'll read every item and think it's fascinating. I have a multitude of lists in various forms and when one list starts getting a little worn and tattered, I'll actually write on it, "make new list." Yes, I'm that much of a dork. Anyway, I was looking at my list to-do list from last week and transferring every single item to this week's list, and getting a little down on myself for not accomplishing much of anything, when I remembered reading some advice recently to focus on what you have done instead of what you haven't done. So I started thinking back to what actually did happen last week, and here is my "list of things done":
  • Took all 3 kids on a walk around the neighborhood, and almost made it around 1 complete loop before everyone started complaining and/or crying, including me.
  • Started an ambitious program to have a 20 minute "Reading Time" with the kids each day, which involves me trying to convince them that sitting on the couch and looking at books by themselves is "really super fun".
  • Had a Family Night lesson on Teamwork ("Our family is a team, and you wouldn't hit your teammate would you Mia and Sam?").
  • Paid bills.
  • Took the kids to see Charlotte's Webb, as part of the free family film festival. Could not even look at any scene with Charlotte in it as I am deathly afraid of spiders.
  • Ran in the sprinklers with the kids.
  • Washed, folded, and put away 7 loads of laundry (with Mark's help) .
  • Took the kids to story time at the Library.
  • Spent 3 hours with the kids at a contaminated beach.
  • Went running (aka glorified speed walking) 2 times.
  • Went to playgroup at a local park.
  • Took all 3 kids shopping at the local fruit stand and Safeway.
  • Had 2 cavities filled.
  • Took Mia to swim lessons.
  • Hired a babysitter and went with Mark to see the movie Juno projected on a building in downtown Seattle. We took Nate and drove the mini-van, and felt decidedly un-hip, but laughed our heads off at the movie.
  • Went to my 6 week Dr.'s appointment (I have now nursed a baby while having a pelvic exam at the same time).
  • Had lunch with a friend .
  • Enjoyed a free concert at a local park with the entire family.
  • Did yard work for 4 hours.
  • Watched Stuart Little for a family movie night (we recently read the book with Mia).
  • Picked and ate hundreds of raspberries in our backyard.
  • Went to Target, by myself, in search of a few new t-shirts, which resulted in me buying $80 worth of clothes I didn't have time to try on.
  • Put "Return clothes to Target" on my to-do list for this week.
  • Dinners made: Quinoa salad, Spaghetti, Terriyaki chicken, Chicken Pita salad, Pasta salad, Turkey Dogs, and Sweet and Sour Meatballs. (No comment on whether the said meals were good or not, just that they were made).
  • Played piano.
  • Nursed Nate about 35 times, changed at least as many diapers, and bathed the kids 2 times.
  • Read bits and pieces of The Potentially Sane Mother's Guide, and was mostly annoyed by the author's seemingly perfect handle on motherhood.
  • Read about 80 pages of Born Standing Up, Steve Martin's memoir which Sam happened to bring to me at the library, and being a big Steve Martin fan, decided to check it out (and got "My Little Buttercup" stuck in my head every time I read it.) Favorite quote: (referring to the Hippie Movement) "I didn't yet know it's name but found out later it was called Flower Power, and I was excited to learn that we were now living in the Age of Aquarius, an age when, at least astrologically, the world would be taken over by Macrame."
  • Watched Super Nanny, Wife Swap (you know you've watched it too), Wipe Out, I Survived a Japanese Game Show, and Hopkins.
  • Checked email and perused other people's blogs...way too much.
  • Picked up and put away about a billion random things, swept the floor at least 50 times, cleaned both Mia and Sam's bedrooms, cleaned all the windows, and thought about cleaning out the van (a lot).
  • Finally, spent about 4 hours working on this week's calendar and to-do list, most of which won't get done.
All you fellow list people: enjoy! Check back next week for a list of things cleaned out from my van.

Jul 15, 2008

Holy Boatload of Pictures, Batman!

In case you have a couple of hours, here are some pictures I've been meaning to post for a long time. Of course I meant to include detailed stories with each one, but since I haven't yet figured out how to stop time, here is the reader's digest version of all the things I've haven't been able to post about.

Sam- I love this picture. The little string of drool has become a permanent accessory lately, and we have no idea why. I swear this guy weighs about 100 pounds, or at least it feels that way since Nate was born. His 2 new favorite phrases: "Oh, I love that!" (pronounced: oh, I wuv dah!), and "Why?" A recent conversation went like this: Sam, you're poopy again? You're out of control! Why? Because you've pooped 4 times already today. Why? Just lay down, buddy. OK.

Oh yeah- Sam was evaluated for and accepted into our school district's Special Ed Preschool program due to his speech delay. That means in September, he'll be in preschool 4 days a week, riding on the short bus, and it's all free. Way to hook us up with the sweet set-up buddy!

Mia graduated from preschool back in May. She thanked her teachers, her parents, and all the little people who made it possible. "I'm just a girl from Bothell with a dream," she said. Way to go Mia!

Mark + kids + 1 hour car ride + big box of diapers= the latest in interior car decor (all the cool parents are getting it).

We bribed them with 3 cookies each to take this picture.

About 10 minutes after the cookies...

Sam and his little buddy Zach. Sam is driving them to work, while Zach surfs the net. Apparently, they thought this all up themselves.

From our raspberry bush: our first harvest of the season. Since then we pick, and promptly eat, about 30-40 each day. This makes the endless yard work all worth it.

4th of July parade: Mia and her friend Jenae. The parade people throw candy at the kids and of course Mia thinks this is the best thing ever. I'm sure she thinks that July 4th celebrates the freedom to eat candy.

The boys watching the parade.

Sam at our "little" July 4th get together, which turned into a gathering of 60 or so of our close friends: proof that I'm still way too sleep deprived to make sound decisions or do simple math. It turned out great though- perfect weather, tons of yummy pies, and lots of fun. The only flop was our attempt at homemade root beer, which ended up tasting a lot like Aquafresh, and not so much like root beer. Better luck next year.

All decked out for Independence.

Fireworks are permitted here, and apparently everyone takes that as permission to go to the Indian Reservations and buy the illegal kinds too. So around dusk on July 4th our neighborhood, and the entire surrounding area, turns into a fireworks extravaganza, and all we have to do is sit on the front lawn to enjoy the show. And it lasts for hours and hours, and even a few days for some people. It also means that I'm afraid to go anywhere for fear that our house will burn down. Here is a video of Sam's reaction to seeing the fireworks outside. He was pretty alarmed by the whole thing, and I think he's trying to say "Boom, pop!"

Watching the fireworks- as you can see, Sam is less than enthusiastic. Even our sparklers were a little too scary.

This is the end result of a day of Bardsley fun. We woke up one Saturday and had a hankering for that low-tide smell, so 4 hours later it was off to the beach for a guided nature walk with an ambiguously-gendered marine biologist ala SNL. After learning more than we ever thought possible about sea cucumbers and creatures that looked like discarded orange rinds, we ended up at the ferry docks so what did we do? Hopped on the ferry that was just about to leave of course. Once across the Sound, we had just enough time to stand in the super long line at our favorite crepe place and run back to the ferry so we wouldn't get a ticket in our 3 hour parking spot. I kept telling the kids, "isn't this a great family adventure?" so they would think that sitting in a ferry lobby eating cold chocolate banana crepes was the funnest thing in the world. But I tell you those crepes are worth it- even cold! And where did our adventure take us next? To the library to return some videos (man, we know how to live it up), and by the time we got home our kids were adventured out. What a day.

Photo shoot with Nate at 6 weeks old

Did I mention that Sam seems HUGE compared to Nate? Notice Nate's stub arm...

Sunday afternoon vegging.

And that's the latest from Bardsleyland.