Monday, October 31, 2011

It's a bird! It's a plane! It's...



NOT corduroy and a spider.

COSTUME FAIL!

I spent all this money on costumes (okay, I shelled out $16 for 2 used costumes at a consignment sale) because YOU, Mr Miles, wanted to be corduroy, and YOU, Mr Felix, love spiders...and you rejected them from the get go. It was almost as if I were asking you both to wear a religious hair shirt or something.

  • Thank jeebus for next fall's consignment sale (re-sell!)...
  • Kudos to Nuncle and AunT (ya for the b-day astronaut costume)
  • Huzzah for Studs (she sent a link with cute last minute Halloween costumes)
  • Bravo for The Felt Frog on Etsy (I bought  an amazingly inexpensive, homemade sticky Superman patch!)
  • Shout out for hand-me-down blazer and button down from Miles 
  • Three cheers for black electrical tape and Mama's mad mathematical taping skills (Dad's costume was free AND clever...it's pumpkin Pi, folks...use your imagination on the pumpkin part.)


THE BEARD WILL GE BONE BY SUNDAY! HOORAY!!! Sad XC season is coming to a close, but every year that thing seems to get longer.

Tonight marks the 4th time we are dressing up for Halloween. I keep reminding Eric to tell the teachers at school that yes, My littlest IS bathed each night, but the Aveda products I've styled his hair with are not coming out. He smells like a walking Van Michael's Salon. (Could be worse!)

I feel like this year was a turning point. I barely got away with forcing them to wear costumes I elected after doing Jedi mind tricks, reverse psychology, and "one potato, two potato..."

Previously, we could dress the boys up like little dolls without even a fuss. Miles's first year he was a pumpkin for all of 2 seconds, and then just wore pajamas with a Halloween theme:



Please, the look on his face in the previous 2 pictures is AWESOME!!!

The 2nd year, we repeated our idea, and had him wear glow in the dark PJs from his Aunt Heather and Uncle Ryan. (Oh, there is that orange shirt you wear all of the time, Ali...you mean you wore it THIS Halloween, too? Post forthcoming)

And then I discovered Etsy, and purchased an awesome chef outfit for Miles, which we kindly let a neighbor borrow this year.
And my mom helped make a Maki roll out of our little girl...er, I mean boy. Ya for the first and only year we will be able to coordinate outfits! And the only year my son will dress up like a girl...until he hits high school and it all of a sudden becomes funny to dress up like a girl. Not that Maki rolls have gender, but the wasabi and ginger headband, and the fact that Felix was an Ali baby doppelganger, just made you question the contents of his diaper.
But this year, even after the initial costume revolt, I think we pulled of a pretty good pair. Astronaut and Clark Kent. Unfortunately, Clark hated his glasses...I don't blame him. He'll be getting those for REAL, along with a mouth full of metal and a face full of acne soon enough. Genetics...


And just because this picture makes me laugh...Felix was not about to set foot in a spider costume, or wear glasses, but he readily stole Miles's NASA hat and wore it around. And then decided he'd hang out by our friends' shed and INHALE a hot dog. It was like an identity crisis--Clark Kent, meets superman, meets Sally Ride, meets Kobyashi (sorry, had to mix in a girl astronaut because I think he still looks like me as a kid.)
Oh, and it also marks the first year our kids are really getting candy, and probably the last year we can strategically throw much of it out...and by throw it out, I mean throw it straight into our mouths.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

It took WAY too long to do that in alternating colors.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Tantrum: photo reflection


One of my good friends had a post some time ago that showed her son during what we lovingly call in our home "llama drama", fussing, melting...TANTRUMS!

It's not that I want to remember these moments filled with tears, but part of my goal in taking pictures of our family is to document all the different aspects: good, bad, and salty. 

Felix has a flare for the dramatic (taking after his brother), and has started throwing his body to the ground in an Oscar worthy manner, which gets me slightly panicked when that "ground" is a concrete driveway.


But then I turn convert some of the pictures into black and white, and for some strange reason, my heart aches a little more. 
Funny how that happens.


Trying this online blog party...not sure a pictorial tantrum post was the best one to choose for this opportunity...but it's just an accurate slice of motherhood!

Photobucket

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Embrace the Camera: Halloween 2011


The boys' Halloween parade was first thing yesterday morning. They traipsed around the high school campus to trick-or-treat in the different departments and fill their bags with all sorts of candy (that Eric and I will steal and eat when the go to bed--except for the goldfish and fruit leather...and maybe a pack of M&Ms and the dum dum lollies. This is the last year we can probably get away with this kind of robbery. And I just happened to make their first dentist appointment next week.)




As you can see, Eric and I got a few pictures with the boys. When candy is involved, no one wants to stand still.

That, and my "photographer" doesn't have the knack for "timing." (see below) To be fair, my children were over the Prom Picture Party and just wanted c-a-n-d-y.

Pretty much all of you have seen the plethora of other Halloween photos on Facebook already...but I can't do an official Halloween post until next week!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Babies Don't Keep

Mother, O' Mother, come shake out your cloth,
Empty the dustpan, poison the moth.
Hang out the washing, make up the bed,
Sew on a button and butter the bread.
Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
She's up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.
Oh, I've grown as shiftless as Little Boy Blue,
Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo.
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due,
Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek - peekaboo.
The shopping's not done and there's nothing for stew,
And out in the yard there's a hullabaloo.
But I'm playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
Look! Aren't his eyes the most wonderful hue?
Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo.
The cleaning and scrubbing can wait till tomorrow,
But children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down cobwebs; Dust go to sleep!
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep.
~ Ruth Hulbert Hamilton



I know we've all read this poem, but it seemed especially fitting for me this past week. I love watching the boys as they develop and grow...but do any of you toddler moms find yourselves missing your babies?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Jinxed

Jinxed, or Happy Accident. I couldn't decide on the title, so I flipped a diaper.

Jinxed it is.

I mean, I post about warding off germs, and Felix gets one "aitch-e-el-el" of an ear infection. Two non consecutive days home from school and a treatment with third string antibiotics. (I buckled and spent an extra $2.99 to get it flavored with high fructose corn syrup, trans fatty, cancer causing strawberry elixir. Okay, I don't know anything about the ingredients, but the lady at the Walgreen's drive-through was sooo nice, and looked like I could trust her when she offered. I mean, she said that she just flavored another omniceph with it earlier in the day, and as far as she knows, that kid isn't in the PICU, yet. What I do think is that the "flavor" is probably just a bunch of ADHD causing dye and sugar...Felix apparently doesn't care and takes each dose like a champ.)

The thing is, Felix isn't a"melter" like Miles when sick. Miles gets fussy, but in a helpless "melty" way. Miles is a Mama's boy through and through. I mean, his phrase du jour is "Mommy...I need you!" I hear it at least 5 times a day. One might think he is incapable of doing things like spooning his own oatmeal. Or walking without holding your hand. In fact, someone today asked me (right after trying to convince me that my boys were twins): "so he (pointing to Miles) is the younger one, right?" Nope. I'm holding the older one, and the younger one is ready to go back into the Goodwill donation center with you and work. And yes, he'll say "hi and bye" and freak me out because there is very little stranger danger going on.

When Felix gets sick, at least not that lethargic "oh my God my child is dying in my arms sick" we have had 1 time, he gets downright angry. And when he gets an ear infection, he gets angry and physically abusive.

And not in a hitting or biting way, in a "I am going to throw my 24+ lbs around while you try to hold me. In fact, I'm going to kick, scream, and attempt a backward swan dive into whatever blunt object might be within diving distance. BUT, if you put me down, I'll arch my back, and ask for you to pick me up. So we can go through this painful exercise all again. ALL DAY."

What is the same about both boys is that they demand when you hold them that you stand up and MOVE. Been like that since birth. I'm just like, "PLEASE can I sit and rock you for a spell?"

First problem: we never invested in a rocker.

Second problem: we've always caved and done the baby shuffle standing up. Sometimes, hours on end. Children are creatures of habits, but my thighs and arms, now sinewy sticks, need a break. 

But I mean, at least let me cuddle with you in the comfort of a chair or something?

Nope, never. Must.Be.Standing.

Does this count as toddler colic? If so, can I get an award? Or a rocking chair?

(Eric's response: "stop feeling sorry for yourself.")

So Felix goes all Greg Louganis on us all of the time when he has an ear infection, refuses to take Motrin, and somehow expects us to channel Jack Hanna and figure out the best hold for the wild beast. There is no other way to explain how he flips backward in your arms and tests your bicep strength. I'm calling up Arnold Shwarzy and asking him to add holding an ear infected Felix to the presidential fitness test. After singing every song in hopes of distraction, shuffling around the room, readjusting to avoid blunt trauma to his head or your private parts, he usually settles in the torticollis/uterus hold where he shoves his bum out, cocks his head in the crook of your arm, and lets his arms dangle. It's charming. I have to get a picture some day. Prior to a year it was kind of cute, now it looks like toddler origami.

At the same time your heart bleeds for the child, you also want to protect yourself from things like limbs to the groin, or him successfully leaping out of your arms onto his head (Have I mentioned he can for real life Mary Lou Retton somersault on the ground and in his crib?)

I think I've used all my famous people references for today.

Back to the ear infection. I promise it leads us to the happy accident.

So--Felix is miserable. Loud. Abusive. And downright just not pleasant to be around. He also likes to repeat "No no no no no no no!" over and over as he does his alligator rolling in your arms. If I had a limb free, I'd get the Flip an document it just so you know I am not exaggerating.

We go back in 2 weeks to the pedi to get an ear re-check. The infection is in the ear that his tube fell out. Grrrreeaat. I don't know what that means, but we go back to the pediatric ENT in December. Yeah, and we are pretty sure his torticollis is doing an encore. Sheesh!

What this all means is that our nights and some of our days have been spent trying to manage a really uncomfortable boddler (baby-toddler. Not quite a full fledged toddler, but certainly not a baby!), and the sympathy pained brother who cries wolf and demands just as much attention. So my plans to finish things, like birthday gifts, was sidelined. But I did finish yet ANOTHER set of bunny/twin hats in time for a friend's shower this week.

(Is the government putting flouride AND clomid in the water now?). Yet, I still had to finish a monkey for a 1-year-old's birthday gift this weekend.

I was on the LAST arm, just getting to the thumb (and then all I needed was a tail), when I ran out of yarn. Rats! So I piled the boys into the car to head to Lucifer's Lair--aka Michael's Craft Store. I was armed with Annie's bunnies as currency for the boys.

All around, bad decision. I barely make it to the yarn section because of the 11 trillion distractions for children 3 and under. The boys were racing the aisles while I looked and looked and looked and looked for that same yarn I had purchased not too long ago.

Gone. Nowhere to be found.

What am I going to do? I mean, I could easily skip the tail. I had a dog and cat with no tail, and I'm not knitting an opossum or anything...but the THUMB?

HELLO! OPPOSABLE THUMB! Kinda like the defining characteristic of a monkey, right?

I had zero time to start a new monkey. For no reason but because I had a new Michael's app with a 50% off coupon, I picked up some really cool yarn to make Miles's and Felix's monkeys, and a very inexpensive component for next month's random act of kindness.

I already knew I had to ask for 2 transactions because if not, I'd get 50% off my $1 purchase, and pay full price for the yarn.

SWEET! The line was short. But the lady in front of me was returning a CLEARANCE item. Really? And then everyone in the store piled behind me. The Annie's crackers lost their charm: Felix shoved his down his cleavage, and they started to come out his pant leg and lodge into his diaper (I found one next diaper change smudged in his tiddly bits), and Miles ate all of the "brown ones" and refused to eat the tan ones. Great. I have a food hoarder and reverse racist on my hands. I was in a panic. I pulled out $1 snakes from the front area and told them to play nicely until we could get buy them and go home: snakes and inexpensive item in one transaction, expensive yarn and 50% off coupon app in the other.

But then the boys ran to the Halloween display beyond the register and started scaling the scarecrow and humping a huge glittery pumpkin. No joke. Full on scaling and humping. You can guess who was doing what.

Clearance woman finally finished after management was called in, and the line behind me was growing by the minute.

(DEAR MICHAEL'S: PLEASE EMPLOY MORE PEOPLE SO YOU CAN OPEN MORE THAN ONE REGISTER! YOU HAVE GOT TO HAVE THE MONEY IN YOUR BUDGET. FROM THE LOOKS OF IT, EVERY MIDDLE AGED WOMAN IN SWEAT PANTS IS BUYING COPIOUS AMOUNTS OF CRAFT SUPPLIES EVERY DAY. Maybe Cain can add something about this to his 9-9-9 disastrous economy plan. 9-9-9-9. At all times, 9 Michael's registers open.  Rant done. Apologies for the political jab...sort of.)

People behind me were whispering--was it my unruly children? Clearance woman? The fact the bottom of their shoes were coated with tan Annie's bunnies?

I don't know, but as soon as it was my turn, I shoved all the items on the counter and did 1 transaction. So glad I saved 50 cents. Insert sarcasm.

I got home, still without a plan on what to do about the monkey, until Eric suggested just making new limbs in a different yarn.

I was desperate, and doubtful. But we looked at my stash of yarn, and decided it might work. I could make arms, ears, and a tail in a few nights and we would be good.

But then the ear infection.

So the day of the party, I still had an i-cord tail and assembly whip stitching to do. But no time. In the card, I mentioned the 2nd part of the gift was "still in production."

As "luck" would have it, Felix was so sick, we couldn't make it to the party anyway. (And I missed one of the biggest XC meets that was hosted at Marist. And the neighborhood Halloween party. And we enjoyed the beautiful weather for all of 3 minutes because of the sickness. And I'm pretty sure I said "I am the worst Mom" about 10 times after losing my patience and getting angry because all I had to eat from an early wake-up until 6pm that day was a tiny organic smoothie from Trader Joe's. It was not my best day.)

But last night after the boys were in bed, I finished the gift--so now tomorrow we can bring a finished "Oliver" to school for a special 1-year-old!
(Like the background artwork? Courtesy of Miles! A numerous day project at school painting on wood with acrylics. Pretty nice, eh? And he knew it would match the new monkey...so smart)

Eric and I agreed that the mix of pattern and solid actually looks really cute!




Unlike Tortellini the Elefante, I like naming each of the monkeys. I've already made a Ned, Madelyn, and Jack. Oliver: done...now to finish Maggie, Ava!

I just have to stop writing about germs and sickness. (Do you think if I write about getting any anonymous check for a million dollars it will happen?? I mean, that's what that whole Secret book I never read was about, right? I'll let you know if it happens. I'll be posting from a new iPad 2, while en route to a year long exploratory journey across the country with our boys in trekked out RV driven by some guy named Zeus.)

Children of the 21st Century

Whenever I open the Mac, Felix screams...

"MAHNA!!" (as he points to the screen)

Translation--let's Skype with my grandmother.

It both amazes and scares me at the same time...

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Warding off the Germs

I'm stressed.

I know my immune system is shot.

I just want to quit and pick my family up for a long hike throughout Canada. (Maybe it's because I stayed up until 1am watching a PBS documentary on these 2 dudes 700+ day trek to follow Marco Polo's voyage across the Middle East and Asia?)

And I have this feeling that the decrease in my immune system is starting to affect the boys' systems. I mean, totally not biologically validated, but just sayin'.

We narrowly escaped the first GI bug at their school (Praise jeebus. No projectile oatmeal facials...yet), but seem to have all caught that first little winter bug.

We've tried to avoid it...

Flu shots? CHECK!
Lots of fluids? CHECK!
Good night's sleep? CHECK!
Lots of fruits and veggies? Jr Varsity CHECK! We are good on the fruit. And generally Felix is pretty good on the veggies if it is Trader Joe's organic foresome or a bowl full of marinara sauce. But Miles is a fruit and peanut butter kid. You know the book Bread and Jam for Francis...it might as well be called Bread and Peanut Butter (or Nutella) for Miles. Except he isn't getting tired of it...and I think is now down to 2 food groups. *This is proof that even if you feed your kids things like pureed dragon fruit and kale chips when they are little that they can still become picky eaters!
Elderberry Juice? CHECK! (haven't started it yet, but read about it recently and am going to give this voodoo potion a try.)

This past week, 3 of my friends and a family member has had a kid with an ear infection. PTSD over here...I hope Felix gets through the season without one! But I have a sense that the boys are getting their first cold finally. And me. And Eric.

Word on the street (or a lunch time update from my husband) is that kids are dropping like flies at school with fevers.

This is when working mom guilt becomes too much to handle. Of all weeks, my work load seems to hit fever pitch. The one person I manage is taking the rest of the week off, and I am *praying* my kids don't have to stay home from school...when in reality, I'd love to say "to heck with work, let's have a sick day and cuddle!"

But I can't.

And I hate it.

So...we are going for full strength Sambucus juice for the kids tonight...some extra caffeine for me to finish my work after they go to bed...a lot of prayer...and the hope that this Mama (and Papa) can find some more balance next week.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Embrace the Camera: Y Chromosomes (and a forehead vein)



Click the button above for rules and to play!

 And yes, Eric's head vein below is REAL. Reason #401 why I love the man.

This week, it was time to get Sasquatch in the front of the camera with our 1 3/4 year old people eater. (Yup. we are back to the yearly beard growing until XC season is done. Paul Bunyan seems the obvious choice for Halloween, no? And yes, Felix is still a cannibal.) 

Outtake!!
Kick me out of the club, but I had to end with this picture of Miles's black eye, finally healing well over a week after his fight with the playground bench. 

RAK: October 2011

Nothing says RAK like a delivery of fresh flowers from a far away friend thinking of our family during some recent turbulence.






It's October! Another month for a RAK. Remember that disjointed post from last month?

This month I turned my sites toward someone who I knew would not be expecting anything from me, save a "poke" or a "like." (Really, does anyone actually "poke?" I just imagine a red hot metal rod lancing me in my side.) You know, a Facebook "friend" who I am probably only still in connection with thanks to Mark Elliot Zuckerberg. His code name is "JM."

JM is 1 year younger than I am, and we went to high school together. We both dabbled in the arts (whoah Nelly--you were artsy fartsy??? Yup. Let me first state that it wasn't studio art. Although, I somehow got the senior award for pottery II--a class I never took. But I LOVED singing and acting. There was a time I wanted to go to a conservatory for college. And then I realized I didn't want to live in squalor or sleep on the casting couch--total stereotyping! Really, I just wasn't *that* talented. My brothers and sisters-in-law upstaged me anyway. And besides, I needed to spend the next decade of my life being too afraid to go to medical school.)

Wasn't this about JM? How narcissistic of me!

Yes, JM. He's such a cutie. The kind of kid who wore a hemp necklace with beads embedded in it, played the guitar, and channeled the 70s vibe during the 90s grunge movement. Much like half of my high school, I am now friends with him on Facebook.

A few months ago I started realizing that every single morning I would specifically look out for one of his posts.

You see, every single morning JM posts some sort of inspirational quote or message. Sometimes it is as simple as "Good morning beautiful people! Enjoy the day!" And sometimes it is a quote from the "Lama." I found myself sort of ritualistically looking for it right before I got out of my car and walked into work. It was like a little extra push to get me to face what has unfortunately become a toxic office environment. (All 15.5 people left)

I also noticed that he posted a lot about his running. It appeared he was training for something, but I didnt' know what.

Insert: LIGHT BULB!

I decided that for October, I was going to contact JM, totally out of the blue, thank him for his daily inspirations, and then offer him a free training plan for whatever race he wanted, courtesy of High Miles Running's famous Coach Heintz. (Good thing I'm married to the guy and could get him to donate his services without much more than a promise of a hamstring massage.)

So, I did it. Pulled the Facebook stalker move, looked at his info page, got his GMail, and contacted JM. I explained in what I am sure was a mess of a message that for no other reason than him giving me a smile and motivation every day, I wanted to do something nice in return.

And he wrote back--shocked, but also delighted! Unfortunately, he's sidelined right now with shin splints, but will get his plan once he heals some more.

So far I am 2 for 2. I have at least 2 more months to fulfill. But at this rate, I think I might try to keep it going. 52 weeks of mail and 12 months of RAKs. Us type A's need long-term homework.


Still strategizing for November...I have the "who," just thinking of the "what."

"Cliff Hanger...hanging from a Cliff...and that's why they call him Cliff Hanger!"

If you can tell me where that quote/song is from, I'll first confirm you have children, because if you don't, I know this will make no sense. Next, I'll ensure that you are a recipient of either a RAK or 52 weeks of mail. I know--just call me Oprah. First it's a hand written letter, next I'll be giving away electric cars.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Keeping the USPS in business...


Calling all cool kids!
Wanna keep the postal service in business?
Do you love getting snail mail that doesn't go straight to the recycling bin?
Do you remember how to hold a pen and do that thing called "hand write a letter?"

I just signed up for the 52 Weeks of Mail challenge.
It started on October 7, and runs for...wait...you know it...52 weeks!
I have 2 more days to write and send my first letter, or I'm pretty sure my membership is revoked.

That means you only have 2 days to officially start.

(You know-I have no idea if there are any real rules to this whole movement, but I have to give myself parameters, or I'll take advantage of myself. Like full on, trying for third base on a first date advantage. Wait, this is getting too weird now.)

I heard about this from my Etsy connection obsession, Christina Williams. AND if you go to her shop, she is offering a discount on her greeting cards this month! Yahoo!

(Although, many of you will be getting commissioned artwork from my budding young artists.)

Ready...set...WRITE!

I'll try to add some sort of gadget on my sidebar with my progress...I'm hoping blogger has something already developed for me to hijack.

Monday, October 10, 2011

You Don't Have To Take My Word For It...

Da-na-na!

Two words: Reading Rainbow (RR)

(I KNOW there are a couple of you who know exactly how to "sing" the synthesized da-na-na! up above.)

I didn't spend a lot of time in front of the TV growing up, but did enjoy me some good PBS programming. Top of the list was Reading Rainbow (right behind Sesame Street, Mr Roger's, 3-2-1 Contact, and Square One).

I kinda had a crush on the host. Right after George from The Beatles.

Oh LeVar! Clearly your time on RR was far better than than that show were you wore a spray painted banana clip.

I found a DVD set that magically appeared on Miles and Felix's amazon wish list. Let's hope Santa is adept at Amazon.com. And I think that I kinda want the set just as much as Miles and Felix, who in truth, don't want it, and don't have much exposure to LeVar in the first place...

Except for the RR YouTube video I found highlighting the book, Imogene's Antlers.

It was one of those awful Potty moments I had this summer when I plopped both boys down on the cans, and searched on the computer for a video to hold their attention long enough for some sort of miracle pee or poop. We had just been reading Imogene the other day, and I remembered, "Hey! That's totally a RR book...I wonder if they have episodes on YouTube?"

Do.They.Ever. We've only watched part of one with Imogene's Antlers, but that's when I got the idea of searching for a DVD set.

I can easily be swayed into complaining about potty training, early rising, and picky eating...but one thing I LOVE about both of my boys is their book obsession. Miles may not be holding a pencil correctly, or doing much more than some interpretative Jackson Pollack for writing...but his fascination with books grows, and he now asks more and more what certain words "says." (No Miles, you mean what does that say, not says!) He also puts together letters (and numbers) with his bath toys and asks, "What does this says?" It's usually something like "R2D2", so explaining that it isn't an actual word has been difficult. Yesterday, I saw Miles reading to Felix, dragging his finger on the book's text saying, "Felix--this says 'BE QUIET FRANKIE!'"

I haven't had one of those, sign my kid up for Harvard moments in some time, but I was like--WORD! Pre-reading skillz! At least let's look into a Ju-Co next year along with Pre-K!

(That dream was punctured when I met a proud papa at the park this weekend who told me his incredibly cute daughter, who just turned 3, can count to 50, write out her entire name, recite her address, and I think she just got her MENSA membership card. Oh, and she wore underwear. Thank God Miles, in his pull-up, was still sporting his monster black eye and got the entire park's sympathy vote. Felix was, well, Felix, and that proud papa told me with a personality like that, to get him an agent...and then Felix yelled "GO!!!" to the MENSA toddler at the top of the slide and tried to push her down. Ooops.)

So, here is our little quasi Reading Rainbow list of favorite books at the moment. But you don't have to take my word for it... I was hoping to get some cute video of Miles telling me about the stories, but he was slightly uncooperative as you'll suffer through 3 minutes of below. Next time I'll bribe him with Nutella.

Press Here

Miles: I love this book! I just got it from my Mahna, and then bought it for my school to share. It's simple. You press dots and they magically do things like fall to the end of the page or multiple.
Ali: And by magic, he means the sheer changing of a page: when you tap a dot 3 times on one page, and then 3 dots are drawn on page 2...it is like wizardry. But seriously, this book is SO much fun. It's the most interactive non-battery operated fun we have had in some time.

The Boy who Wouldn't Swim

Miles: I think it's funny that the boy's name in the book is Eric. In one page, he is so afraid to jump, he curls his toes under the ladder as his moms pry his body off of the edge.
Ali: I'm not a huge fan of this books because it is a tad wordy and contrived, but the idea of overcoming fear is a big one in Miles's life, so I am remaining tolerant of it being in our rotation a lot.

Animalia
Miles: I've had this book for about a year, and it is still one of my favorites. I can find Graeme in every page, and always have to ask why he is selling tickets. Always.
Ali: I love love this book. Everything about it. There isn't a plot, but it has just amazing illustrations, is a more refined where's waldo, and we are always discovering new things on each page.

The Day Jimmy's Boa Ate the Wash

Miles: This is one of my favorite books and Felix's now, too! I love finding Tommy and laughing at the cracked eggs.
Ali: Here is another ode to Reading Rainbow book. It's a really good read, and there is something about Steven Kellogg's illustrations that appeal to me. We have a handful of other Kellogg illustrated books, but they are a little too advanced for Miles right now.

And just because my time is running short, and I'm 2 seconds short of throwing this computer out the window tonight because I cannot upload a video easily, here is a pictorial list of some other favorites on our rotation.

Still on the list, and the book he mentions if you ask what his favorite is:


(Or as Miles calls it" TRYYYYYING to Poop!" Emphasis on the "TRYYYYYING" He is so funny when calls it this.) Poop is funny. Poop is interesting. And did you know a two-humped camel makes a two-humped poop?

The 2 noteworthy elements of this lengthy video.
  1. Our getting Felix to say "Charley Harper." Um, cuteness overload.
  2. Asking Miles to say "You Don't Have to Take My Word For It" at the end. Just like his mom, he is AWFUL at that whole verbatim thing.

video