"On this day in:" Broken

February 29, 2004 on 7:30 pm | In Main | No Comments

I couldn’t figure out why my “On this day in:” links were broken. Then I realized it’s leap day. We haven’t had this day in four years!

First Major Day of Yardwork for the Year

February 29, 2004 on 7:25 pm | In Main | No Comments

I spent almost the entire morning working on the yard. One of the first things I did was harvest the orange tree. Here’s a picture of this year’s harvest:

Last year, we only had a few oranges, so next year, I think we will have more than we can eat. In addition to picking the oranges, I also trimmed some of the stuff that has been growing through the winter, as well as prune and fertalize the rose bushes. It won’t be too long before all of the prants are green and blooming again.

Dinner Out

February 28, 2004 on 10:04 pm | In Main | No Comments

The family went out to eat tonight, for the first time in a while. We went to Cortney’s favorite, the Red Lobster. When going out to eat, I am always nervous that the kids won’t behave, and we have an unpleasant time. While waiting for our food to arrive, things started to look bad. Sean had climbed under the table, and Ethan was crying. Ethan acted like he was hungry, but wouldn’t eat. So, I took Ethan out of the high chair, and held him for a bit. I told Sean that he was not allowed under the table, and he had to sit on the seat properly and behave.

When the food arrived, Ethan had calmed down, and was happy to start eating again. Cortney ordered popcorn shrimp, which came with fries and applesauce. We gave the applesauce to Sean, and let Ethan pick at the fries and the shrimp. Once he discoved the shrimp, he was happy to eat those, and picked all of them out from the fries. Sean apparently listened to my warning, and behaved well for the rest of the meal.

So, despite the intial trouble, Cortney and I ended up enjoying a nice meal with Sean and Ethan. And, we are starting to see some maturation in both Sean and Ethan. Ethan is now eating a variety of foods, and Sean is able to sit still through most of a meal. This is big progress!

Cortney Holds a Garage Sale

February 28, 2004 on 9:58 pm | In Main | No Comments

We had a garage sale at our house this morning. One of Cortney’s friends help her set it up, and also brought her own stuff to sell. They took care of everything, leaving me to watch Sean and Ethan. I had no problem with the kids. After breakfast, potty training, and a video, I took the kids outside to play, before finishing up with lunch. Apparently the sale went well. They even held the sale an hour later than they had planned. Cortney sold some of our old baby stuff, as well as household items we never used, and made some good pocket change doing it. We will donate the items she didn’t sell.

A Breakthrough in Potty Training

February 28, 2004 on 9:53 pm | In Main | No Comments

Sean made a major breakthrough in potty training this morning. He went poop in the potty! For the last few days, we have had Sean running around the house with no underwear, diapers, or pants. I know Sean tends to go right after meals, so I took off his pants after breakfast this morning. I suggested that Sean sit on the potty if he had to go, and offered to help. He wanted to do it all by himself, even locking the door! We had been using a sand timer to let Sean know that he had to sit on the pot for a certain amount of time, even if he didn’t feel like he wanted to go. Sean came out of the bathroom, and wanted the sand timer. So I got it for him, and he closed the door behind me. Several minutes later, Sean came out of the bathroom. Shortly afterwards, he said he wanted to go back and sit on the potty. This repeated several times, until finally he came out and told me he did it. I didn’t believe him, but went and looked anyway. Sure enough, there it was, a poop in the potty. I gave Sean lots of praise, and showed Sean how to wipe himself, and to make sure he washed his hands afterwards.

Sean was excited to tell Cortney. Cortney had promised a present to Sean if he went poop in the potty, so she took Sean out later on in the day to go to Toys R Us. Sean picked out a mountain with sound to go with his Thomas train set.

We are not done with the potty training, by a longshot, but at least we are making progress!

Another Trip to Burger King

February 27, 2004 on 7:29 pm | In Main | No Comments

The good writing material seems to have dried up lately. Or, maybe I need to stop working late. At any rate, we took Sean and Ethan to Burger King tonight, as we usually do on Friday nights. We met Sean’s friends Shannon and Nicolas, and their parents there. Despite the desire to go play, Sean waited patiently at the table until he finished his food. Ethan is gradually becoming more comfortable with the ball pit. He managed to wade out into the center of the pit on his own, covered up to his neck in balls. He was happy there until some larger boys started playing too roughly for him. Sean played well, until he did a big jump and landed right on top of Ethan in the ball pit. We pulled Sean out and took him home for that stunt.

Since we arrived home earlier than expected, I snuck out to get a hair cut, while Cortney bathed the kids and put them to bed. Cortney may not believe this, but I do think she is a good mom, and I appreciate all the effort she puts into watching the kids. I know it isn’t easy.

Uneventful Thursday

February 26, 2004 on 8:19 pm | In Main | No Comments

I had to work late today. As soon as I arrived home, I had to turn around and take Sean to gym class. So, I didn’t see much of Ethan. As usual, Sean had fun in the gym class. After arriving home and having a glass of milk, Sean was more than happy to go to bed.

Sean’s Well Visit

February 25, 2004 on 8:05 pm | In Main | No Comments

Sean made his 4 year well visit to the doctor today. They took his blood pressure for the first time, and Sean wasn’t too thrilled with it. We had to convince him it wasn’t going to hurt before the aide could take the measurement. Sean is 40 and 1/2 inches tall and he weighs 41 pounds. This puts him at 75% weight and 50% height. Of course, Sean barely has any fat on him at all, so he certainly is not overweight. The doctor asked if we had any concerns, and Cortney and I both mentioned the potty training. The doctor suggest we have Sean not wear anything at all below the waist. Even the underwear gives a false of protection, and is more likely to result in an accident. After the doctor checkout, what Sean feared came to pass. He had three vaccination shots to endure. Well, at least he calmed down before it was time to board the bus for school.

Poor Ethan. Even though Sean has a clean bill of health, Ethan isn’t doing so well. He has diarrhea, and is teething. The doctor thinks the teething is actually causing the teething. At any rate, Ethan was definitely out of sorts today.

Sean and Ethan Have Fun at the Library

February 24, 2004 on 8:24 pm | In Main | No Comments

Tonight was Mom’s night out, which worked out well since this is the night I take Sean and Ethan to the library. Both Sean and Ethan were very well behaved. I think Sean might be growing a little tired of the trains, or maybe he just appreciates the equipment he has at home a little more. Sean spent most of his time playing with the bead toys, not the trains. Ethan seems to try a little of everything. He constantly goes back and forth from the train table, lego bricks, bead toys, and puzzles. Both Sean and Ethan sat quietly through both the baby time and story time. It’s a good night when the kids have fun, and I can relax at the same time.

Sean Gets a Compliment at Gym Class

February 23, 2004 on 7:29 pm | In Main | No Comments

After gym class this evening, Sean’s instructor said that Sean listens very well in class. I said “That’s good, because he doesn’t listen very well at home”. I am suprised at the amount of enthusiasm that Sean shows for the gym class. Even when Sean is waiting for the other kids to complete their routines, he shows no signs of boredom at all. I imagine that we will keep Sean in the class as long as he continues to show this level of interest.

Sean’s Fourth Birthday

February 22, 2004 on 2:18 pm | In Main | No Comments

Today, Sean is four years old. We had a party for him at the railroad park. Cortney arrived early to make sure we had a picnic table. She took Sean with her, and I brought Ethan just before our guests arrived. Here is a picture of Sean waiting for all of the guests to arrive:

Sean's four year birthday party

You can see the gift bags, the food layout, and the train in the background. And the silver balloon is the number “4”, facing the opposite direction.

We bought enough tickets so that all of our guests could ride the train. A steady downpour forced the end of the party, but we had three hours of good weather, and plenty of time for all of the kids to play, for everyone to eat lunch, to eat the birthday cake, and for Sean to open presents. Cortney put in much time and effort to pull the party off, and she did a good job. I believe everyone had a good time. And now, Sean is a year older!

Ethan Plays in the Backyard

February 21, 2004 on 7:47 pm | In Main | No Comments

I spent the morning with Sean and Ethan in the backyard. Sean took a break for a while to go to a gym class (makeup for the day he missed when he had a dirty diaper) but then rejoined us after returning home. I made some good progress pulling weeds in the backyard. The fun ended when Sean dumped some sand in Ethan’s hair. That was a real mess. This was really fine play sand, and it took me forever to rinse all the sand off of Ethan.

"My Birthday is on Sunday"

February 21, 2004 on 7:42 pm | In Main | No Comments

Today, Sean kept saying “my birthday is on Sunday”. Cortney and I kept telling Sean his birthday was tomorrow. Two weeks ago, we started telling Sean his birthday was next Sunday. Of course, for the last week, we have been telling Sean his birthday is on Sunday. I guess Sean has been hearing and saying Sunday for so long, he doesn’t realize his birthday is just one day away.

A Trip to Home Depot

February 20, 2004 on 8:19 pm | In Main | No Comments

Sean and I had a father and son moment this evening when we took a trip to Home Depot together. I needed to pickup an outlet extension, so that I could plug in the alarm in the garage, where I already had the garage door opener and light plugged in. I think a large store like Home Depot is just too much of a temptation for a young boy like Sean. I think in his mind, there is always something more interesting in the next isle over. Sean definitely enjoyed the water fountain and security camera (with live monitor) displays. It was a tough call deciding between preventing Sean from running wild in the store and letting Sean have some independence, but I think we reached a good compromise. I wanted to look at some other stuff, but by the time I found what I needed, I decided it was best just to pay and leave the store for another day.

Time With Ethan

February 19, 2004 on 7:30 pm | In Main | No Comments

Cortney took Ethan to gym class this evening, so I stayed home with Ethan. We played one of his favorite games. One of us puts our hand on top of our head, and the other does the same thing, imitating the first person. He and I alternate putting our hand over our mouth, and putting our arm behind our head. It seems like Ethan could do this all day long. Ethan also enjoyed the “This little piggy…” game.

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