No More Wire Hangers!!!

Someone, ahem, told me I need to be more positive about my kids whilst blogging. So, don't give up on me!

Life is really getting so much easier for me. I no longer require a visual on the boys at all times. Yes, one can wander behind a wall without my fearing he will attempt to pry off outlet covers. Not the outlet plugs. Even my dog can pluck out those useless pieces of plastic. The cover plate that is screwed into the wall. How in the world? Um, that really happened. On several occasions.

Here's how easy it's getting around here. One day last week I vacuumed the entire house. The whole darn thing! I had started out during naptime just wanting to get downstairs done. It was killing me, and I'm not even psycho about clean floors. Okay, maybe the kitchen floor. But that's it! We had even had company the previous night, and I didn't even have the decency to vacuum for them. So, proof of my regular, not psycho, need for freshly vacuumed carpets.

When the kids' rest period was over, I honestly thought I was done with my beloved miracle of machines for the day. My plan for the time between nap and Keith's arrival was to do some number/counting activities with the boys. Oh, they can count: Garris to 20 and Ivan to at least 10. But they need help assigning those values to objects and digits. This plan included a special number puzzle from the playroom. When I retrieved this spectacular teaching tool...Gasp! The purple number 7 was missing!

Are you hearing horror movie music like I am? You know...the music that plays as someone's being stabbed to death behind a shower curtain.

Again, gasp! My mind flashed back to a scene a few days prior when I walked in on all 3 of the kids...even Avery...hurling various wooden puzzle pieces across the room. Oh, I lost it. You know I did. Throwing. In. My. House. This time...enormous gasp! After apparently a not-so-thorough glance that my demands had been met and all pieces were returned to their rightful homes, I hadn't thought about those puzzles. Until now. Dun dun dunnn! WHERE IS THE PURPLE NUMBER 7?!!!

Picture the scene in Mommie Dearest where Joan, in a fit over the use of wire hangers, shakes out a powdered cleaner all over the bathroom and orders Christina to wipe it up. One by one I dumped out the toy bins and ordered the kids to put back their contents. In hopes of finding the missing purple number 7, I showed the kids how to shake out each item before placing it back in the proper bin. They quickly lost interest in this charade, so I told them we would do nothing until it was found. In the end, I spotted that pesky purple number 7, which had fallen out of an overturned toy bin and rolled just under the edge of the couch, and we all rejoiced for the end of my madness. When all items were stored away, the playroom floor was evenly coated with lint, fuzz balls and tiny bits of trash. What is a gal to do?

Well, we did our number activities. I also included a Cheerio counting exercise to double duty snack time during the lesson. Once finished, I assigned each child to a very separate location downstairs with a puzzle and instructions: If you work on this puzzle until the timer goes off, you can watch a movie until Daddy gets home. Which would give them about 10 minutes of viewing time, but I kept that tidbit to myself and let them proceed with motivation. Meanwhile, I zipped up the stairs with equipment in tow. I started at the top of the stairs and worked my way back to the playroom. May as well do all the rooms while the vacuum is up there, right?

So, I'm holding fast to that claim about being normal...and not psycho...with my need to clean. As for missing puzzle pieces? Hmm...

Okay, the truth. I'm not as wretched as you are thinking. I mean, who would go that nuts over 1 little puzzle piece. There were in fact 3 missing puzzle pieces. A red triangular prism that we found right away and a yellow, pegged circle that has yet to be spotted.

What? You want to see more of my gorgeous children? Okay... Here are some more shots from the summer.

This is from BB, Before Boys. Keith and Avery had a fun Saturday morning of water color painting. Avery's picture looks a bit like Ariel, and Keith titled his masterpiece "Origins of Drag Queen." I'm not sure who was more amused by the activity.

If forcing kids to pick strawberries and blueberries in the heat is child labor, that's not what we're doing here. Avery joined us as well, although she was too deep in the bushes with her BFF for me to get a picture.

Ivan is mad because he has to put the berries into the bucket instead of his mouth.

I'm surprised there aren't more pictures with laundry baskets in the background, as they were scattered about the house the first 8 weeks. Initially, I let Ivan fold the kitchen towels, which I use instead of paper towels...the reason none of them match. But I had to revoke that decision because he was such a perfectionist about it...refolding any towel that wasn't perfectly aligned and getting upset with a stack that was off centered. Poor little guy. Who knew this is what would become of the toddler who we saw continuously snatching and hurling items across the visitor's area at the orphanage.

More examples of the goofball we somehow produced. Seriously, neither one of has a single silly bone. It looks as if she's sketched a torrential downpour...and is laughing or cursing the unfortunate soul standing just outside the safety of that nearby tree.

Ivan spends much of his day laughing...at himself of course...or trying to get others to laugh. He's bound to end up on stage one day.

Magic spell? There is no other explanation as to why all 3 of them appear to be at rest on the couch...at the same time...in the middle of the day.

I think this was the first day Avery sweetly invited the boys into her room to play dress up. Here, Ivan has applied his own make up and finally settled on a pair of green and white suede boots. Garris spent most of his time working to find just the right number of hair accessories. Obviously, the more the better, right?

At one point, both boys were wearing fur coats. I must find those pictures!

Family Dedication, a.k.a. Baby Dedication, at our amazing church Four Corners...and our pastor Alex Early on the left.

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