Saturday, May 30, 2009

A Very Alaskan Day

Our little friend E.W. just turned 2 and his parents arranged a FREE float plane ride for his birthday party.  This will be hard to top for future birthdays!  O Boy, Mr. T and Phil all got to go on the plane with a few other friends and had a fantastic ride.   They circled the town, saw our house and the new church, flew over Petersburg Creek and even saw bears.

Here are some of the little fliers, waiting anxiously to get on the plane with their life vests on.  The wonderful pilot, Rod Judy, who offered to do this flight, is standing under the wing.

If you really want to see the look of intense "I'm not so sure about this" concentration on O Boy's face, click on the picture to enlarge it.  We were totally amazed he even consented to get on the plane, let alone go up in it!  But he hopped on with no hesitation and, aside from looking VERY serious, was all set to go.  He still talks about it days later and when he sees any float plane fly over (which they do frequently), he shouts, "There's our plane!"
You can barely see Mr. T's glasses peeking up over the window.
Ready for takeoff!
The birthday boy also looks a bit concerned.
Mr. T gives a final wave.
The Little Sweetie helps to push them away from the dock.
Why didn't I get invited to go too??
The fly-over
Taxiing back to the dock
Mr. T is looking down at the pilot as he ties them back up to the dock.  You can see Phil in the very back seat.
And now for the cake!  Nikki made a very cool (and healthy)  float plane cake which the kids enjoyed at Sandy Beach.
Then, just after we got home, a friend from church showed up with a freshly caught king salmon which he filleted up for us.  It was a very Alaskan day!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Playgroup - making trailmix

Another totally easy but fun idea for any of you moms out there looking for a great playdate or playgroup activity: make trailmix!
We just had everyone bring a variety of foods (almonds, rice crispies, raisins, coconut, cheerios, etc.) - it was pretty much whatever we all had on hand to grab from the pantry!  We put it all out in bowls, gave the kids each a cup and let 'em at it.  The results were delicious - and, since we did it outside, there was no cleanup.  Fantastic.  For any of you who care, this is also a great activity to work on/teach your child how to use their pincer grasp. :-)  

Last day of preschool

When I asked Mr. T what he wanted to make for his teachers as a thank you gift, he said, "Hamburgers."  This is a not a big surprise, as it is his favorite food right now.  Thankfully, I have a recipe for cookies that actually look just like hamburgers.  It was a lot of work but they did turn out to be pretty cute and it was a unique idea.  Good job, Mr. T!  We wrote on the plates along with the burgers, "Thanks for a WHOPPER of a great year! from Mr. T"  Click on the photo to get a better view of the burgers.
Two of Mr. T's great preschool teachers.

More pictures from the Little Norway festival 2009

Sweater twins - this is me with my friend Melinda in our reverse matching Norwegian sweaters
A new entry in the parade this year: horses came over on the ferry from Wrangell!  They realized that Mr. T and O Boy had apples for their snacks and came over to get a bite.  They left the parade ranks, got right down in the boys' laps where the apples were and sniffed around for a handout. 
Another new parade entry: goats!  
Some local little Vikings


Some local ladies in their Norwegian bunads
Our friend Tina and her baby Jadyn all dressed up for the festival.
How did Uncle Scott get into the parade?
Our friends the Lenhards with one of their sons.
The parade always starts with a flyover by one of the local helicopters carrying an American and Norwegian flag.  Click on the photo to get a better view.

Toddler spa

As I was sitting holding the Little Sweetie and watching the boys play in the bath today, I was casting about for some other activity to suggest to them to keep them busy and yet not splashing me or annoying each other.  Then I thought about wrapping up a towel and resting my feet up on the side of the bath and having the boys pour warm water over my feet and then wash them.  Brilliant!  They absolutely loved it and it was (sort of) like going to a spa.  Until they started dumping the water so that it ran down my legs and soaked my pants.  But it was a great activity for a brief time.  I'll take relaxation in whatever form it comes to me.  Now I need to teach them to paint my toenails. 

Good buddies

Here are the boys with their buddies, the Goade boys, two Coast Guard guys who will be moving to Seattle in June as their time in Petersburg is finished.  We'll miss them!  It's been fun to have them around for the last few years and watch the boys grow up together.

Bumbo babies

Mr. T - 4 months
O Boy - 3 months
Little Sweetie - almost 4 months

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Little Norway Festival 2009

Family picture in the Norwegian sweaters and hats.
We actually have a picture of Mr. T as a baby with this same Viking!

The Big Race

Today the 3 kids and I did the Lop the Loop race with our good friend and adopted "Ate" (Tagalog for older sister), Delilah Bernaldo.  She pushed the Little Sweetie and I pushed the boys - though I let Mr. T run as much as he wanted.  So he started the race with a bang and ran off and on throughout the 4 mile race.  Then he got out just before crossing the finish line and was DELIGHTED at the crowd cheering him across.  O Boy decided there were too many people watching and refused to get out of the stroller, which is very much in keeping with his personality.  Here we are at the start of the race.  I love the boys' expressions.  I was giving camera instructions to the friend taking pictures, thus the slightly concerned look on my face.
Delilah waiting for the race to start with the Little Sweetie, who is also very ready for the race to start.  She (not Delilah!) went promptly to sleep and stayed that way the entire time.
Picking up the pace as we approach the finish line.  He's just started to notice that more and more people are starting to clap and cheer for him.  !!
I had to make sure he actually crossed the finish line and didn't head off to sign autographs.
We did it!  I've usually done this race in an hour and our time was an hour and 18 minutes, so we kept a pretty good pace - even with Mr. T running all over the road every once in a while.  We had to really pick up the pace when he was back in the stroller to make up for lost time!  We kept passing, and then being passed by, and then passing again the same people!  Thankfully we were not the last finishers.  Phew.

Please note that we were also handicapped by the additional weight of Sheepy, who O Boy held the entire race.  It was also his first major athletic competition and we are proud to say that he was the first place sheep in this race.

Now we have indisputable proof

Tonight we decided to document tonight once and for all just how much O Boy loves spinach.  Here he is licking out and scraping out with his fingers the bowl of spinach salad we had tonight.  After we'd fed him and the rest of us all the main salad, we just decided to hand over the serving bowl to let him pick out the small pieces of spinach.  Amazing.  Just for the record, we also had an asparagus stir fry as the main dish with this meal and he couldn't get enough of that either.  But he doesn't like popsicles.  Go figure.  

Mr. T therapy

Since Mr. T gets most of his therapy done at school nowadays we don't often get in to see what's going on.  Thus I haven't taken and posted any pictures of what he's up to these days.  I got to sit in on his PT session last Friday and took these fun pictures of some of the things he does in PT.
Here he is scooting himself forward with his hands - very challenging!
Before attempting this extremely difficult balancing activity, he told us, "I do self!  Okay guys?"
This is a great action shot of his wonderful PT teacher Barb deflecting a torpedo shot throw from Mr. T.
In this activity he either has to pull himself hand over hand forward or just balance on the scooter board while being pulled.
Here he is getting help walking on the magic rocks (he did this first and then decided he'd do it "By self!" next).

Friday, May 15, 2009

Spring gardening

Since I always forget that Blogger uploads my pictures in reverse order, this is the sequence of our recent gardening adventures backwards!  A few weeks ago we planted some marigold seeds and let them sprout inside.  It was time to get them out into the real world of sun and deer and see how they'd fare.  So far only one of our six plants has been gobbled up by the deer.

Making an attempt to get from the hose (around on the other side of the house) to the newly planted flowers with at least some water left in the watering cans.  Yay to IKEA for creating these $1 watering cans that are indestructible and perfect for toddlers!
Brilliant: O Boy discovered that he could more efficiently carry water by putting his watering can into the wagon.  Now that's thinking!
Watering the rocks, the dirt, and occasionally, the newly planted flowers.
Notice that with the Little Sweetie's close proximity to the dirt tub, she was sprinkled with more than her fair share of dirt.  At one point I caught O Boy "showing" her some dirt in his hand (directly above her eyes).  The dirt was obviously raining down onto her face.