Monday, October 29, 2012

Preschool Parade

Ben had his Halloween parade at preschool this morning.  It's about two minutes of the kiddos lapping the school yard twice, followed by ten minutes of doting parents taking pictures, and three minutes of changing kiddos out of costumes so they don't get ruined at school.
Jackson wanted to wear a costume like the big kids.  Here they are with Teacher Sarah. 

The fun for the kids started after us parents left.  They got to get their faces painted and played a few fun games, I think.  I can never really get too much information out of Ben about what he actually did at school.  All I know is my Ben walked out of school with a full painted Frankenstein face.  I was just telling my friend Shannon, after seeing her little Frankenstein that Ben hates to get his face painted.  How he always refuses, and sticks out his hand to be painted instead.  I was a little shocked when I saw him.  He told me on the way home that he didn't really want to get his face painted.  I asked him why he did it then, and he said "just for fun."  I think it was peer pressure.  It's beginning already.

I thought for sure Jackson would be a little afraid of his big brother when he saw him, considering he was very uneasy around James in his rock star costume, and all he had on was black eye liner.  Instead he laughed.  Love that baby!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Ben's Boo! Brunch

My balloon photo wall couldn't withstand the hurricane of 4-year-olds that blew by it! 
Ben and I hosted another little Halloween party/playdate this year for Ben's friends and mine (their mom's).  I went with a ghost theme and decided to host a brunch, since some of our friend's have afternoon preschool.  My parent's brought a delicious egg, spinach, and sausage casserole, and my friend Shannon brought mini muffins.  So all I had to put together were yogurt parfaits (mini individual ones for the kids and a big one for the adults to share, a fruit platter with strawberry ghosts, and frozen yogurt dipped ghost banana pops.  

After we ate the kids moved on to decorating pumpkins.  Some spent a lot of time here, and some were done in a matter of minutes.
They also enjoyed a round or two of ghost bowling and had fun playing freeze dance to some spooky Halloween tunes.
Some more of the cute party guests. 
Mimi, Papa, nor I could get enough of our adorable baby chickie. 
 Or our cute mummy.
By the looks on their cute faces I think it's safe to say they had a good time. 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Science, Spooks, Sweets, and Stores

This last weekend Ben's preschool hosted a free community event called Science Day.  There were loads of awesome science activities for the kids to walk around the whole school and do.  All of them are pretty easy to do at home with common household items like baking soda- still haven't done any yet.  Among the activities were baking soda sand volcanos.

And dry ice bubbles.

My baby Jackson was there too, looking so precious all bundled up.
Afterwards we went out to pizza and then went to Ghost Golf (an indoor very spooky small 9-hole golf course).  Luckily this year Ben is not spooked out by any Halloween decor and loved it.
After the excitement of science and spookiness, we vegged for the rest of the weekend, watching Halloween movies, eating festive desserts, and snuggling.  Love the weekends!
Both have their favorite thing in hand.  Jackson- his bottle.  James- his remote. 
And Ben spent the better part of Sunday setting up shop in his room.  Everything had a price tag, and everything cost real money.  Clever kid getting his mommy to pay twice for something I already own!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

On being a big brother

I know I've been so sentimental lately about brothers, but Ben really is the sweetest brother to Jackson, so I wanted to get some things down for him and I to always remember . . . in case things change one day, you know. : )
A few days ago I was walking Jackson down the hallway into his room for his nap after Ben gave him kisses of course, and Ben yells out "Remember, Baby Jacky, you're the cutest baby in the whole wide world!"  Killed me.
Ben is safety patrol in this house.  He ALWAYS keeps an eye on Jackson for me.  Whether I ask him too or not.  Whether I am in the room also or not.  Ben started yelling for me, shouting "help me with this kid," when I was in the other room.  I of course hurried over, but apparently not fast enough for Ben who was almost in tears because Jackson was headed right towards some cords behind the tv.  He was seriously so concerned for his baby brother it almost made me cry.  And no I don't rely solely on my four-year-old for the safety and well being on my 8-month-old.  Not solely.
I have never noticed any jealousy when it comes to Jackson, as far as James and I are concerned.  I do see him vying for attention though around other family member or strangers.  Today we were at Joann fabric store and several mainly older women kept smiling and waving to Jackson in the cart. Ben was actually sitting in the basket right behind Jackson and apparently getting none of the same attention.  He asked me, "why does everyone only care about Baby Jacky and not me."  It wasn't said in a completely sad and pathetic voice, so don't get too overly concerned for Ben.  He's not traumatized over it or anything.  But tonight as I hugged him before bed I told him that he is just as special to us as Jackson.  I continued to explain that people just love babies, just like him and I do (we really share that in common).  And because Jackson is the cutest baby in the whole world, people just go crazy for him.  He completely understood.
Also today Jackson was really fussy in the car on the long ride home from Los Gatos.  After a while Ben said, "I'm the good one right now, huh?!"  I just had to laugh to myself.  I guess we need to stop playing the comparison game.  Ben completely understands when we tell him sometimes- in moments of inappropriate behavior mind you- that he is being a bigger cry baby than the baby.  And everyone is always talking about how good Jackson is also.  Kids are smart gosh darn-it.
One thing though, amongst others, that I always praise Ben for is being an amazing brother.  It is my absolute number one favorite thing in this world- watching him be a brother.  I know that there will be downers later on about their 3 and a 1/2 year age gap, but I am just loving it right now.  Not only are things logistically so much easier than if I had two in diapers say, but I love that Ben and I are experiencing this baby thing together.  I know he wont remember all that much about this time, but for now it is so fun to have a little buddy everyday to go through this new phase with.  We talk to each other about how cute Jackson is, or how we cannot believe how big he is getting- kinda like how I talk to James at the end of the day when we are laying in bed staring at Jackson (no he does not sleep with us, but James likes to sneak him out of his bed for a little snuggle sesh nightly).  They say that having children makes you love your spouse even more- and I would sometimes argue that the stress of children can have just the opposite effect. sometimes.  I would also have to add that it has made me love my Ben even more than I did before.  If that's possible.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Preschool Pumpkin Patch

Today was Ben's preschool field trip to the pumpkin patch.  I really like how his school organizes the field trip.  The cost is covered by the school but the parent's bring their own children and then after a group hay ride and group pic you are free to stay as long or as little as you'd like.  And you are in charge of your own kid.
Diving into the corn kernal pit. 
It's amazing the difference between last years trip and this years.  Last year Ben was a very shy, quiet little guy who wouldn't talk to any of his fellow preschoolers.  This year I was often left in the dust as he was running all around the farm with his buddies.
Such silly fun friends. 
I also thought about last year, how Jackson was still in my belly.  And this year enjoying the pumpkin patch along with his big brother- especially the wagon ride.
We went to G&M Farms again in Livermore.  They have a corn maze (of course), a corn kernal sandbox (original and so cool), a  few animals including a mini donkey named Taco.  Awesome.  A playground, a spooky barn, and a large pumpkin patch.  Ben picked a pumpkin for himself and a smaller one for baby Jacky.
We stayed for about two hours, lingering long after our fellow schoolmates left with our good friends the Banta's- Shannon, Beau & Bright, and out other little friend Grady.  The weather was amazing- although I'm still looking forward to cooler weather- dang CA.  Just a fun day on the farm.
I heart this picture very much. 
Till next time.  Which will probably be in a couple weeks- gotta go again with Daddy. 

Saturday, October 6, 2012

New tricks

Someone learned something new tonight before he went to bed.

James will definitely be lowering the crib mattress tomorrow. He's growing too fast.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The stuff of boys

While I'm still keeping hope that #3 will be a sweet little girl.  Boy's are awesome.  And now that Jackson is just starting to really engage and play with Ben, I get a glimpse of just how fun the future will be with my two boys.  And I see a lot of trucks, tools, and treasure hunts in that future!  And apparently no shirts. : )