Sunday, June 30, 2013

scarlett and the weekend of weird smiles

scarlett's birthday extravaganza!!! one of these days we will have really low key birthdays. not even birthday weeks or birthday weekends. just singular birth days. but not this year.
scarlett asked me last sunday if wearing these "high heels" made her look like she was already 6. so mature.

scarlett's big deal for her birthday was a redecorated bedroom. 

being 6 means ridiculous faces.

I thought she may have not of been too excited about her new room after all because she had been so quiet that morning. A bit later I went to check on her and I discovered her in a princess dress up and her tiara sitting at her desk. She calls her room, "my new princess room". 

her big surprise from both her grandmother's was an american girl doll. there is nothing i can do to compete with that. She peruses the catalogs for months on end and has begged for one for so long. I tend to shun babydolls because she already has so many but I really think this made all her dreams come true. Plus, I really like that she still wants to play with babydolls. I'm glad she doesn't want to grow up too fast. 

again, more weird 6 year old faces.

saturday was a neighborhood swim meet/birthday party/then crash on your couch from exhaustion extravaganza
Scarlett and Reagan both love the pool but they really only like to compete against each other. If this had been a sibling rivalry meet there probably would have been blood drawn in the pool. 

Scarlett asked for an all-girls mermaid unicorn pool party. I delivered. 
i channeled my elementary school drawing abilities and crafted this for pin the fin on the mermaid:
feel free to pin it on pinterest. thomas colored the ocean parts.

typical reagan. making himself comfortable at the snack table.

no swear words on the cake this year as scarlett and all her little friends can now read.

Our traditional piñata full of melted candy filled the unicorn half of the birthday party theme request. 

how i felt at the end of the party:

Later that night, we had dinner at our 2nd favorite mexican place with thomas' mother. She surprised the kids the night before by showing up on our doorstep. She actually surprises them everytime she visits and it's great everytime. Plus, I don't have to listen to them ask every 7 minutes about when Mimi is coming. Surprising our kids is the way to go. 

 the servers at the restaurant all singing to scarlett really freaked her out for some reason. hence, another weird 6 year old smile.

babies having babies.(that's always funny, bytheway.) 

scarlett at age 6:
you can't help but buy scarlett things. she is so enthusiastic and loves everything. she even loves to swing by goodwill and see what wares they are peddling. She's a great thrifting buddy, except she always wants to rescue ratty, lice infested stuffed animals. I'm running out of excuses as to why they can't come home with us. 

Scarlett's incorrect pronunciations that i should probably correct but i won't. they are just that cute. 
trader joes pronounced traitor joes. It sounds like a threat. 
zucchini instead of bikini
she's sometimes will get a "sorecold" in her mouth
Often daddy will be in the yard pushing the "mowlawn". 
still calls her school by the name of it's fall carnival, pandapalooza elementary
YMUSA instead of YMCA
dairy queen blizzard is actually a dairy queen blistard
calls the couch pillows the couch tushes
she wanted to listen to justin "beaver" sing and when the song was over she asked, "why didn't he sing? i only heard a girl sing."

i like her. the end.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

that one time my house was mostly sorta clean

recently i had a 2 hour period where the whole house(excepting the pit of despair that is the garage) was mostly, almost, pretty close to clean. i know! i thought it was the apocalypse too!!! since we've lived here almost 2 years this august, here is the long awaited house tour that no one has been begging me for!

the library. christened this by the big kids because this is "where the books are". makes sense enough to me. i would call it the "puzzle pieces with the tabs ripped off room" or the "broken crayons shoved under the bookshelves room"  or most likely "where old cd cases go to die room" for reasons unknown to them.

and the other side of the room. i really want to get this deskset for in front of the window for afterschool homeschool time(sounds so much more fun than homework time!).

the entry way or the police forensic fingerprint collector's dream. paint like chalk so everything shows up! especially if you've got a kid who sneaks cheetos and then slinks away up these stairs. my dream if i lived alone would be to paint every wall white and then have large colorful artwork everywhere. 

thomas' home office:

scarlett's almost ready room. more pics of the final product after this weekend!

our master bedroom, which is oddly enough, the smallest master bedroom we've had since law school, but best neighborhood. ironic, don't you think?

would it be weird to have this gigantic picture of us hanging over the bed? how about 2 gigantic pictures hanging over the bed? what if i finally broke down and got a headboard? i found a lady who upholsters them in any style you like and i got one for scarlett, but for me(and i guess thomas since we are bunkmates), i'm having a hard time committing. 

looking down into our living room. thomas had me order curtains specifically to counteract all this beautiful natural light during football season. 

reagan's room. he wants me to paint it green.

dining room:

our table has been covered for the last few months with a gallery wall in progress. i've been trying to located important family pictures for a while and it's not an easy task.

my 1997 dream kitchen complete with blue countertops and hunter green flooring. every tornado that passes through, i pray that it will destroy just the kitchen.

i love this breakfast nook, it only need about 10 extra feet to make it workable. and a pantry about 5 times the size. someday....

i forgot to take pictures of blythe's room. 

the end

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Father's Day redux

Dad, dad he's our man, if he can't do it he'll write an extensive legal document explaining why not!!! Go Team Simpson! 
Father's Day is always rather low key. Thomas doesn't like getting showered with attention and presents, which proves that opposites attract. His big surprise took place the week before when his phone somehow fell into the pool and he had to get a replacement ASAP. Nothing says Happy Father's Day like a replacing something expensive that you already paid for once.

I made him some wonderful waffles breakfast and then made my famous mexi-shells for dinner. It's one of my best recipes and it travels and freezes well. A high carb treat that makes a great leftover lunch, If you're into that. 

Mexi-shells à la heidi 
2-3lbs ground beef
16oz cream cheese
Taco seasoning
Package of jumbo shells

Boil shells. Brown beef, rinse. Add cream cheese and cook till a delightful gloppy mixture is created. Add taco seasoning. Spoon beef mixture into boiled shells. Place in 9x13 pan. 
Sprinkle cheese over shells. Spoon layer of salsa over shells. 
Cover with foil and bake for 25-30 minutes at 350°. Give the best dad in the universe a sloppy kiss and enjoy!
Thomas is pretty great. I spent a few minutes trying to locate a great quote on fathers that would sum up my feelings about how important he is to me and how well he fulfills his role. From the proclamation on the family, " By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. "
I like thomas. He was one of my best decisions. 

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Hello genetics

I went to field day today at the kid's school. Another mom who was observing the activities noticed that Reagan didn't always participate in all the events. Some events had sprinklers showering the kids with water and others required a sopping wet sponge to be passed over heads and under legs. Plus, the activity changes were announced by an air horn. Some of these things proved to be a little overwhelming for him, so he would try them and then occasionally opt out.
When I explained to this mom that Reagan has autism, she gasped, recoiled slightly and said, "Oh, no!", like I had just shared with her that I have a face eating virus. Folks, this is not the right reaction to a mother of a child who is different. This may be your internal reaction. I don't blame you for that. No one wants difficult things to happen to them or their children. But challenges are going up happen to all of us at sometime. No matter what. So instead of pity, show interest. Show kindness. Show curiosity. Offer to clean my house. I'll never shy away from talking about Reagan. He's the best. Saying, "oh, okay", is fine too. 

This is how you react to someone with autism:

Or this:

Or this:

This year has been super hard in many regards. Reagan does not learn and perform the way the rest of us do. We spent most days after school doing additional schoolwork, often around 2 hours more. If it doesn't sound fun, rest assured that it wasn't fun. I loved getting to teach him. There is something special about teaching your children. But I didn't love the copious amounts of time required to do things that weren't copacetic with his way of learning. 

One thing that really improved the year for both of us is a couple of friends who made their way into Reagan's life. Two girls, Kelsey and Alexandra, started playing with Reagan at recess. It was as simple as them noticing he was alone, asking what he wanted to do and joining in. He immediately latched onto this friendship and he noticeably brightened in his attitude toward school. For me, it's nothing short of a miracle. I worried less about him. I'm so grateful that there are some nice kids out there. 

So, here's your chance: here is Scarlett. She was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder a few weeks ago. The fun just never stops at this house. 

But we're not worried. We're already rather popular at the local pharmacy.  We've got new things to work on. Focusing and organization are things I struggle with too. But Scarlett thrives in school and loves to be a smarty pants know-it-all and i can't imagine where she got that from. Hello, genetics. We've pretty much doomed these children.  I'm hoping an overabundance of athleticism or wealth could be our next issues.

date night

This was our date night last night:
We are surprising Scarlett with new bedroom decor for her birthday. I like to take a need and pretend it's a want. She's been pretty clear that she wants an American Girl doll for her birthday but she needs new paint and a new bedspread so we're rolling with that. All I've told her  is that she gets to pick a new paint color, hence the pepto bismol pink. I prefer gray and white, so I'm feeling rather magnanimous in my gesture of allowing her to pick. 
Thomas and I finished up painting about 1130 last night. Anything can be a date night with thomas. I just like talking to him with zero distraction and zero interference. However, we have the painting skills of two tall kindergarteners. And we have the entertainment level of two middle schoolers. After we finished painting, we watched ring of honor wrestling on local access cable. It's about 3 steps below WWE and we love it.