Sunday, January 27, 2013

January Excitement

January flew this year!  I cannot believe how close we are to February - it feels like we just had Christmas!  All is pretty good in the Sprague household.  My cute boys are back in swimming and doing so much better now that they're in two days a week.  It makes us busy, but they are so much nicer kids when they're getting exercise - especially this kid!
One big event over the past few weeks was the Reflections Ceremony.  Ethan made an awesome picture of the Olympics - so proud of him and how hard he worked!
 The kids got recognized in front of everyone and got a pin saying they are ambassadors to our city from the Mayor.
 I missed the official "shaking of the hand" picture, so I took one afterward with two very important women - our Mayor and our Principal.  Two women I thoroughly admire.  Ethan looks so teeny!
Another big event was our assembly on Tolerance.  Ethan was part of a reading of the poem/story "The Crayon Box that Talked".  He did a great job and those cute kids were a hit!  There was more narration - and I was pretty proud of the way it all came out (I wrote it).  I think it's important for kids to learn about some of the great people throughout history who have shown tolerance and love!
 Also starting this month?  Basketball games!  We've had our first - and it was a riot!
 The kids looked so cute all lined up.  They tried really hard to listen well - but it's hard when you're so excited.....
 Ethan played so hard!  He got the first points of the season - in the first play of the season - but it was for the wrong team....  We were all cheering till the ref pointed out the problem....  Oops!
 I just couldn't believe how aggressive Ethan was.  Last year he'd kind of hide from the action - not this year!  We do have to work on remembering to dribble.... this was a rare moment when he did....
 But it more often looked like this....  And sounded like me yelling, "Dribble Ethan Dribble!"  I'll spare you the video!
(Thanks to my friend Jessica for the great game pics!)  The boys played hard and I was impressed with how hard they all played!
On a sad note - one of Ethan's teammates had to drop out as they discovered around Christmas that he has Hodgkin's Lymphoma.  It's heartbreaking, and we're doing what we can to support his family and send him smiles.  I can't imagine what his mama is going through!  Ethan's had a hard time with it - though he probably still doesn't totally get the severity.  So even though we've been hit with a bit of a cold and various bugs - we're feeling oh so thankful for our health this month.  For all you that are praying folk - send out your prayers for our friend Ethan G.!
And now I'll head back into my chores and school work - so much going on!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Tiger-Striped Monsta Trucks!

Any time we're out in Tacoma, we try to make a stop at the zoo.  We're members there, so it doesn't cost us anything per visit - and I love seeing the animals when there aren't a lot of people around.  Plus, I'd only seen these cute tiger cubs when they were sleeping and that was just not good enough!
This time they were playing outside - with their keepers - and they were an absolute riot to watch.  Like kittens, only much bigger!
I love them.  As did Lucas.  Ethan was enthralled for a bit, but then hunger won out.  Lucas and I stayed and fell in love with our feline friends.
 I couldn't get him to leave for quite a while.  "Mommy they're so keee-yute!"
 We traveled by light rail to make our way to the Monster Trucks - and boy was that exciting.  Remember, for my boys, it's as much how you get there as where you're going.  The ear plugs were put to use right away and the Dome was roarin' away.
 The boys loved it.  Brian and I like the local D-Derby better- more action, but the boys love the BIG.
 Intermission brought us a visit from Robo-Saurus - whom I thought was rather frightening and of which the boys were not phased one bit.  They loved him as he snacked on cars and blew fire at us.  How is that not scary?
 Afterwards, we headed to The Ram for some dinner and quality family time.  In which the two older boys watched football and made no eye contact the entire time.
And then Lucas wanted the Ipad, so poor ol' me got to read my book. :)
This week was back to the grindstone - only with a calmer, saner, less stressed out me.  And Ethan had one sick day which led to me going home early and enjoying a book once again.  I can't say I was too upset.  All is well - busy, but well.

Friday, January 4, 2013

A Week of Rest?

This week has been devoted to just chilling out and getting us all ready for the next chunk of the year at school.  The boys have been in daycare (which is way more fun than hanging out with mom while she cleans, catches up, and such).  I've been busy doing all that - but I've also read 4 books, worked out 4 times, and caught up on a little TV.  It's funny that when I talk to other young (can I still call myself that?) mothers I encourage them to take some lazy time for themselves - and yet I still feel guilty when I do.  One of these days I'll learn to relax happily - without guilt that the house isn't clean and the schoolwork isn't ready....  

Our New Year's wasn't exciting - we let the boys stay up until East Coast New Year's - which is 9 here - we all screamed "Happy New Year" several times and then pretty much we all went to bed.  Woohoo!
Probably the only exciting thing to happen this week was Ethan finally lost his 3rd tooth.  This sucker has been loose since summer, but finally popped out.  He was thrilled!
We also got haircuts - but that's not too exciting, I guess.  We've spent time swimming, playing UNO, and reading - and that's about the extent of it.  I'm normally a go-er and a do-er, but it's been nice to be a much calm-er me for a few days.  Though I can feel my inner explorer ramping up for this weekend.  Can you say
"Monster Trucks"?

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Post Christmas Fun

On our last night with Brian's family, we headed out to Zoolights for some Christmas lights fun.  It wasn't warm but it was definitely beautiful.  This is where I realized that the camera I've been using (which is really just my video camera on photo setting) has no flash.  So lights pictures did not happen. \
We did get to see Santa swimming with the sharks!  He even called out Lucas - saying he was glad we had a firefighter present to help out!  He then called the boys over for a picture with him - too cool!  (Thanks Angie for snapping the pic!)
 We also got to see some very cute (and not so small) baby tigers.  Ethan loves baby animals - he was mesmerized.  Me too!
 The next day was a big lunch with all and then they were on their way.   Lucas was most emotional this year - so sad to see them go.  We relaxed, napped, and geared up for a day of adventure on Friday!
Since the boys have been very very little, I like to take them on adventures.  We just get up and go - figuring it all out as we go, and just enjoying the time together.  There are some basic rules for adventuring with kids - 1)  Don't stress about getting anywhere fast - you won't.  2)  Realize that the boys enjoy the different forms of transportation far more than they enjoy the destinations....   3)  Point out how cool everything is around you - be observant and open to tweaking your adventure to include something else.....
So off we went - ferry, lightrail.....   And really, that would have been fine with the boys....
We ended up at the Gingerbread Village at the Sheraton - so amazing!  The line was horribly long, but the boys were awesome while we waited.  We talked lots about life in general and the great Christmas we'd had.  We also tried to peek ahead and steal some ideas for our houses next year.....
The Aladdin was a favorite - obviously.....
 Alice in Wonderland was impressive - like amazing!  So much to see - it was beautiful.
 My own Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle -Dum really liked all the details and were super observant, picking out cool strategies and tricks for the houses.  We've already decided we'll have to do some sculpting with rice krispie treats next year!
 Next stop was the Winter Carousel down by Westlake.  The boys love a good carousel....
 Though they were more excited about the mini doughnuts next door.  And they were good!
 At this point it was time to head back to meet Brian after work and check out a fancy italian restaurant he'd always wanted to try.  Since we were withing 24 hours of his birthday, we happily obliged.
 It was fancy - and expensive - but also incredibly delicious and had awesome ambience.  An owner named Luigi, a waiter named Giuseppe, and the most amazing Tiramisu we'd ever had!  Great memories!
 The ferry ride back was one UNO game after another - leaving Ethan way out ahead of us all in wins - how does that happen?  The adventure?  It was perfect!
The next day was birthday festivities at my parents'.  A great dinner, lego partyware, and homemade doughnuts - yum!
 The night wouldn't be complete without a game of UNO - I'm telling you, we're obsessed!
Happy 32 babe - So glad to have been a part of so many of those.  We love you and are so thankful for all you do for us.  You are one amazing guy!

Merry Christmas 2012

Santa Came!  After a pretty busy night, we woke up to stockings filled, cookies eaten, and reindeer food snarfed up.  The living room looked gorgeous - this family better not keep growing :)
 The kids all waited downstairs - so patiently.   I have so many memories waiting anxiously to get to come up (down) the stairs with my cousins.
 We couldn't get Cooper to sit still long enough to take the pic - and Brian had to make an appearance, but we got the traditional stairs pic.
 The next little bit felt like this picture - blurry and festive!
 The boys saw the stacks that were theirs and saw the note from Santa to open the safe.....
 Anticipation mounted as they tried to figure out what was in there....
 Ethan was thrilled at the Pokemon toy....
 Until Lucas noticed something else in his safe....  A DSI?
 "Well Mom, Sorry, but I guess Santa doesn't always listen to Moms."  They were so darn excited.  And I'm sure Santa has a great explanation for the great Christmas Heist of 2012.
 It was a fun morning of opening, eating, laughing, and playing.  I loved how excited the boys were for each and every gift.  And the 23,323 pictures they took on their DS's.  One of my favorite gifts for Lucas was this giant cardboard train that is currently occupying our laundry room - it's huge!  He got a train whistle from Santa as well, so he's all set and loves pretending in that thing!
 The littlest boy got a private opening time during nap time for the big kids.  He loved all the attention and loved his new toys before he had to share them with his brother.
A great day of family, love, and gratitude!  I guess Santa didn't ruin it after all!