Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Texas Eppleys

Reading with Mimi
Originally uploaded by mandy&john
Mimi and Granddaddy have arrived for a couple days. Nothing special planned, just a couple days of visiting. Chris has already shown off all his birthday presents and is now at the park with them while his brother naps and I get some work done.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Squishing through the snow

Originally uploaded by mandy&john
Last year the first snow was in October, but you still can't call this a late snow. There are leaves left on trees and some are even green.

When the boys woke up, we brought them to the window and showed them the snow. Alex said: "I want my raincoat!' They were outside in the snow until I dragged them in for breakfast almost an hour later.

After school Chris was collecting the last bits of snow and making snowballs. He didn't want Alex to destroy them, so he locked Alex in the fenced part of the yard anf built his collection outside of the fence. He wasn't too mean, though. He would put a snowball under the fence for Alex whenever he asked for one.

When I brought them in for lunch. Chris put his last snowball in the freezer.

Chris is wearing the same snowsuit and boots as last year. I just found them in the attic last night. The new gear is on order at REI, so he has to squeeze into these for now. Thei prompted Chris to say, "I love it when my boots squish me, but not when my friends do."

Monday, October 25, 2010

Crazy weekend

Alex at Liam's birthday
Originally uploaded by mandy&john
In addition to Chris' 4th birthday party on Saturday, we also spent Saturday evening at his school's fall festival and a few hours Sunday at a cousin's birthday. For two out of three, we showed up without costumes to a costume party.

Chris' party was a success. We invited everyone out to Tangerini's farm for a hay ride and pumpkin painting. A few of his classmates came from about 45 minutes away. One of the bonuses was the indoor (partially) hay-bale maze. We outfitted the guests (and a few other children who just happened to be vising the farm at the same time) with flashlights and they disappeared into the hay for about 30 minutes. Hay is an amazing insulator and it was quiet for most of that time except the few seconds it took the pack of kids to emerge at one entrance and disappear into the other.

This picture of Alex is from Liam's birthday after the piƱata. Alex dove into the candy scrum and picked out all the Dum-Dums he could find. He got us to open them all; then he held them all in one hand for the rest of the day.

After two days of candy, birthday cake, and a dessert heavy pot-luck, we were wiped out on Sunday and spent the evening watching the Pats and/or the Sandlot.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Bee in trouble

Bee in trouble
Originally uploaded by mandy&john
The other morning, we found a bee caught in a spider web. The spider, maybe a tenth the size of the bee, was attempting to apply more silk to the bee without getting too close. It had managed to get one wing and the stinger pretty well covered, but was still keeping its distance. I guess it figured it could wait the bee out.

After I took this picture, I sat down to work on the patio with the boys chasing imaginary butterflies with the nets they got for Easter. Soon, though, I could hear Chris explaining the situation to his brother. "Alex, the bee is caught in the spider web. Alex, the spider is going to eat the bee."

That was soon followed by, "Daddy! Alex caught a bee!"

"Oh?" I said barely looking up from my laptop. "With his net?"

"No! Hand!"

It doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me that Chris has been stung 8 times in the last 2 years while his brother will go grab a bee and get nothing.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

"I Eat"

As I ate dinner with the boys the other night, without John, I was trying to make conversation.

Mandy: "Chris, it looks like Baby Alex is enjoying his dinner, don't you think?"
Chris: "Alex is not a baby. Alex, are you a baby?"
Alex: "No."
Chris: "Alex, are you a little boy?"
Alex: "No."
Chris (quizzically): "Then what are you, Alex?"
Alex: "I eat!"

True enough.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Baby Chicks

Originally uploaded by mandy&john
More from Silver Spruce...

Chris came home weeks ago explaining that they had an incubator at school, then a few days later, that there were eggs in the incubator. At the Mother's Day Tea I got to see the eggs, and Chris stole the camera to take this picture of them. Today when I picked him up he was more excited than normal. Most of the chicks hatched last night, but one of them waited for his class today. He said Miss Diane called him over to see the baby chick "using his egg tooth" to climb out of the egg, and then how it walked, jumped and rubbed against the other chicks. Pretty exciting for a little guy - I'm pretty sure I've never seen a chick egg hatch myself!

Mother's Day Tea

Originally uploaded by mandy&john
We love Chris's school, and here's one of the reasons. To celebrate Mother's Day at Silver Spruce, Chris made me a bracelet, wrote out name cards for me and for himself (with dotting of letters from his teacher), and decorated them. He then brought me to our table (with the help of his friend, George, as he had rushed in before he had been shown exactly where his table was), pulled out my chair for me, and poured our tea in real china. We then chatted over tea and strawberries. The whole thing was adorable, although it was a miracle I ever got into or out of the tiny chair at the tiny table.

Thursday, May 6, 2010


This Easter (actually, the Saturday before when we were dying eggs) we let Chris try an egg. We'd been letting him have things with eggs baked in, but we hadn't been brave enough to try egg by itself. He ate the whole thing and had no reaction. After a few more tries we were pretty convinced he's over the allergy.

Since then we've re-introduced eggs into our regular breakfasts. Chris is still tentative (since he was fully aware that he couldn't eat them before). Given a choice he'll opt for the non egg breakfast, but his curiosity usually gets the best of him and he almost always tries the eggs.

Alex, meanwhile, is loving it. This morning, he had three hard boiled eggs for breakfast. Yesterday he had two scrambled eggs. We may have to get our own hens soon...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Where is Alex?

I had Alex today for lunch and his nap time. He played by himself nicely while I made a mess of preparing grilled cheese and reheated soup. Since he was being so good, I let him know that if he could keep playing by himself after lunch, he wouldn't have to nap right away. He usually goes down right after lunch.

When we had finished eating, I sent him off to play while I cleaned up the kitchen. I had inexplicably made a mess out of that simple meal and it took a good 10 to 15 minutes to get everything in order. Once the dishwasher was going, I went to check on Alex (who I hadn't heard a peep from) and then get to work. There was no sign of him in the living room or anywhere on the first floor. Upstairs was just as silent and the playroom was empty.

I found him in his bed, under the covers, with his pacifier and giraffe. He smiled at me; I closed the shades, kissed his forehead, and shut the door.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

My little flying reptile

The boys were watching TV this morning as I was cleaning up the kitchen. A show was on about dinosaurs and their diets. It included Pteranadons and how they eat fish. Alex pointed at the TV and said "I do!" (pronounced: Ah noo!) and then "Fish!". I asked him if he wanted the leftover fish in the fridge and he nodded and then proceeded to eat the small bowl full of baked Cod I gave him.

Thank goodness PBS doesn't run ads for Froot Loops.