Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Things to remember

Sunday was Father's Day. Rob was up early to go to his Boot Camp class that he hadn't yet learned was cancelled. So much for sleeping in on Father's Day. We had a reservation at the Green Briar in Boulder for Father's Day brunch. It's a nice place but we were in and out quickly since Coben didn't want to be seated and it was not the kind of place that he could run around. Cady presented Rob with his gift which was a bird feeder that she had painted. She was absolutely convinced that Rob needed a bird feeder and she only gave the surprise away about 5 or 6 times before he opened it.

After brunch we decided to go for a bike ride around the lake. This was Cady's first "solo" trip (she was accompanied but unassisted. Coben was riding in the back of the bike trailer with is head completely weighted down by the helmet obstructing his view of everything. As we were pedaling around the lake I had a chance to reflect on this particular time in our lives and things that I never want to forget.

For Cady, it's the image of her pedaling confidently behind me on her Princess bike with her handlebar streamers blowing in the wind. The look of confidence and joy on her face as she pedaled her little legs as fast as they could go. Everytime we passed someone she'd squeeze her little horn no less than ten times to signal to every passerby her accomplishment more than her presence. Four is a fun age and it's a challenging age. Cady questions everything and she misses very little. She has such pride at the new things that she learns such as snapping and whistling and she performs for anyone who listens. She wants to do everything herself yet is quick to want to be carried, cuddled, and protected from every spider, monster or scary creature that enters her mind. At this point in her life she wants to spend time with us and is hungry for our approval. She loves to put on dance and fashion shows in the evening. She has a quick temper, a sassy little attitude, and at times the attitude of a fourteen year old. Fortunately this is tempered by a very strong compassion, huge heart and an understanding of right and wrong. She loves her brother and more fights are caused by her over-protectiveness of him and his resistance to being big-sistered all the time. She's afraid of spiders, loud noises, and trying new foods but craves the adrenaline rush of the sky bungee and big roller coasters. She loves date nights with her mom, dressing up and putting on lip gloss and jewelry. She questions when she will be old enough to pierce her ears, stay home alone, and ride the upside-down roller coasters. She wants to grow up so badly and it's happening right in front of our eyes.

Coben on the other hand is still our little squishy. I love his chubby, yummy little knees and the bow-legs that peek out of his knee-length shorts. I love the way he runs with his left arm pumping front to back when he sees somewhere that he has to get to, giggles like a gremlin, and grins from ear-to-ear. I adore the way we have to stop at every flower on a walk through the neighborhood so that he can sniff it. The world is his playground and he lives the saying, "take time to smell the flowers." Coben is generally serious, very studious and a man of few words which makes those smiles and giggles even more endearing. He lights up the most when his dad gets home from work. We watch for him through the window and when he sees the Trooper his arms start flapping and he grins from ear-to-ear. He squeals, "Da-da!" when Rob walks through the door. He is mostly laid-back but has a ferocious screech that he is not afraid to let loose when he must have his way. The things that matter to him are food, Wall-E staying away from his food, being picked up ("up, up, up") and being able to climb whatever he thinks he should climb. If given those simple things in life he is quite content to toddle around all day unloading drawers, climbing tables and playing with his toys though his favorite activity is running around in the backyard. He'd live in the backyward if we'd let him and all day long he brings me his shoes which is his sign that he wants to go out. He loves to play chase with his sister and echoes her screams as they tear through the yard. He loves his bedtime books and can't wait to snuggle into his bed for a story. He's also a sucker for early morning cuddles with his mom and rising at the crack of dawn.

Sometimes I wish I could freeze certain moments such as the bike ride around the lake. Too often it feels like we are running to appointments and activities, trying to stay on top of life, or just plain worn-out by the more challenging side of having a one and four year old. It's hard to stop and take a good look at what is in front of you. One day Cady will be doing her own make-up and going on dates without me and Coben will be sleeping in and no longer up at the crack of dawn for morning snuggles. As much as I love to see them growing up, every obvious moment of growth makes me catch my breath and question whether I am truly savoring each and every moment of their little-ness.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Feeling Better

I think we just came off of the longest period ever of Coben not feeling well. For a while I was starting to think that the screetching, whining, crying, refusal to eat, and constant need to be held for the past three weeks was his emerging personality. I'm happy to say that the old Coben is back and it seems as though the Hand, Foot and Mouth disease that he has is just really bad and long-living.He has been such a joy to be around the past three days. He is giggly, mischievious, silly and absorbing everything around him. I've missed that Coben.

Coben is talking and signing up a storm. Please, thank you, more, eat, dog, balloon, bird, Cady, mama, dada, kitty, eat, up, and help are just a few that come to mind. He also seems to be a budding Metrosexual as he LOVES to have lotion applied to him...constantly. He brings the bottle and signs more. The lotion is applied and he signs more. Rinse and repeat. He also loves to brush his hair and his teeth. His climbing has been out of control. There is nothing that he won't try to climb and he usually succeeds. It's tough to protect him from himself. But I think his all time favorite activity is to push his sister's buttons. And he is VERY good at it.

Cady still wants to marry Coben. I mentioned the other day that one day Coben will one day grow up and maybe marry someone. Cady huffed at me and said, "Mom, I am going to marry Coben. He will give me a ring and I will give him a spider man key for our house." It sounds like she's got it all planned out.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Mushrooms on your pizza?

This one will probably get lost in translation but I have to blog it for Cady. I've already found that when I read back on my blogs that there are so many stories and anecdotes that I would have forgotten about had I not written them down. So Cady, one day I would like to remember this conversation because it is just so you!

A couple of days ago all of us were on the porch. I shared with Cady that I thought Wall-E looked like a pepperoni pizza. "Look Cady, he has pepperonis everywhere and an extra big one right there on his back". Cady responded by pulling up his tail and saying, "and here's his mushroom" while pointing at his butt. And then, "Hey dad, do you like Wall-E's mushroom? He has a very hairy mushroom." So, I could leave it at that. But in the interest of preserving the story in all of it's glory I must share the rest. I'm blushing as I type this because I realize I am sharing this with more than a handful of family members and friends but it is pure Cady gold. Out of the blue this morning she walks in the kitchen and says, "Mom, your mushrooms name is Nosy and Dad's is Fluffy!"

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Roaster Poster

I miss the days that Cady called Roller Coasters "Roaster Posters" but at least she still calls American Flags, "Flags of the Guh-nited states of Gamerica" and she thinks that when I sing "London Bridges" that I'm singing Lemon Bridges. She's growing up so quickly. My first sad moment of my girl is growing up is when we went shopping last week for summer clothes. Gone are the days of me putting things in the cart and knowing that she'll wear them. These are the days of Cady choosing her clothes off the rack, pairing things up herself, and having very definitive ideas about what are keepers and what are not. We now have a groovy pair of black and white leopard print 3/4 length shorts to prove it.

Why the talk about Roaster Posters? We went to Lakeside, our neighborhood amusement park on Memorial Day to ride the kiddie rides. I bought a big stack of tickets to last both kids the afternoon and we set out to ride them all. Coben wanted nothing to do with anything and broke into tears anytime we even got close to any of the rides. Cady rode one kiddie ride and was completely unimpressed. We don't even think she cracked a smile as she was bouncing downward on the miniature freefall. So we ventured our way into big person land and Cady's eyes lit up. We started small and put Cady on an adult ride that was a bit rickety but had a speed and whip factor. I don't remember what it was called but I do remember wondering if Cady was up to this big ride. Within moments my question was answered when she and her dad came whizzing around the first corner and I saw Cady's eyes shining brightly and a huge grin plastered across her face. We then walked further into the park and found the carousel so that we could all take a spin. We thought that the carousel would be the grand finale until Cady looked up and saw the Cyclone. I immediately sensed her desire as I watched multiple emotions pass across her face in mere seconds. This is the roller coaster that we pass almost on a daily basis and that Cady has wondered about for years. It represents everything good about the "Ferrist" (the fair). The Cyclone is the BIG roller coaster. It's a large rickety old-style roller-coaster with big drops and fast turns. Those of you that have visited have probably noticed it as we've driven up Sheridan. Immediately Cady started to plead, "Could I go on the big roller coaster?" and there was an urgency and desire in her voice that I only hear when she has absolutely made a decision about something that she MUST do. We walked up to the Cyclone and checked out the stats and confirmed that she was in fact tall enough to ride. I double and triple checked before buying more tickets. "Cady, are you sure you want to go?" She never hesitated. I thought for sure that once she was in line she would change her mind. She did not. She didn't even look nervous. Even I, a seasoned roller coaster rider, might have been a little nervous. Instead, what I saw was a wild-eyed excitement that she was finally going to ride the Cyclone. Coben and I watched as Rob and Cady lined up to get into the cars. We watched them enter the cars. We watched them take off. Then we quickly scurried to a spot where we could see them zooming down the track on the first drop. I worried that she was going to completely freak-out and Rob would have to spend the entire ride consoling her. Instead, what I saw when they came barrelling down the first giant drop was two elated beings having the time of their lives. I met them at the exit and Cady was grinning from ear-to-ear and talking a mile a minute as someone who just got an adrenaline jolt. Rob said that she laughed and screamed (in a good way)coming out of the drops. Cady thought it was hysterical that Rob screamed too. So now, there is even more purpose to every coin that Cady puts into her Disneyland Piggy Bank. She is amused by the story of her mom being scared on the big loop-de-loop roller coaster at California Adventures in Disneyland. And the wonderment of a rollercoaster that actually goes upside down and you don't fall out has her chasing the Disneyland dream all the more! Disneyland is no longer Princesses and Fairy Tales...it is a place with more roller coasters to conquer.

Here is a picture of the roller coaster. They didn't have a good one on their website but you can see it here in the distance: http://www.lakesideamusementpark.com/History.php