Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year

The kids were up a little later than usual, but not too bad. M-lady got up with the kids for the first shift. I got up a little later, and joined the family after breakfast.

After we were all ready to go, M-lady and I started working on getting everything out of Buster's room. I was starting the job of installing carpeting in his room, and we needed everything out. M-lady left to run some errands after a bit, and the kids helped me finish up getting the room cleared. We disassembled Buster's crib to get it out of the room as well (and won't be re-assembling it).

After the room was cleared, I started the install job, which began with some sweeping and putting the pad in. Bud helped as much as he could, but at times I had to send him away to keep from shifting the pad by running and jumping around on it. M-lady arrived home before too long, and we all had some lunch.

In the afternoon, we all loaded up and drove up north a little ways to visit our friends R and T. They have a beautiful place a little ways up the peninsula, with a fantastic view. It was good to see them, and we had a fun chat. The kids generally kept themselves entertained, although they absconded with my iPhone for a little while.

I returned to working on the carpeting when we got home, and M-lady left to run some more errands. When I realized that I didn't have enough tape to stick everything down, I convinced the kids to come with me on a quick trip to Home Depot. They were pretty good on the trip, and we arrived home a short time before M-lady got home, bearing dinner.

We all had a good dinner, and afterward M-lady got the kids into the bath while I made some more progress on the carpeting. I took a break to help get the kids to bed, reading stories to them and tucking them in. Buster slept in a Pack 'N Play in Bud's room, and they were excited about the 'sleepover'. They both went to sleep pretty quickly, and hopefully won't wake each other up during the night.

Happy New Year to all, and wishing you the best for a prosperous and healthy 2011!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Cold Day Out

I got out of bed a little after 8:00 this morning. Buster called out before too long, but couldn't make up his mind whether he wanted M-lady or me to get him changed and dressed. I found Bud reading in his bed, having been up for a while, I guess.

I got the kids some breakfast and we all picked up the house a bit, as the cleaners arrived a bit before 9:00. They did a great job cleaning the house, and even re-sorted Bud's bookcases to get all the Lego containers on the shelves. Bud thought it was pretty cool.

I ran out mid-morning to pick up my car from the dealership, and got back around the time the cleaners were finishing up. I played with the kids a little bit before we got some lunch.

After lunch, I took Buster out to Home Depot and Bud went with M-lady on some errands. I was going to get carpet for Buster's room, but he started getting antsy. So I grabbed some swatches to show M-lady and we came home. Buster wanted to play outside, but it was pretty cold today, so we came in quickly. We played together a bit with cars before M-lady and Bud got home.

I headed back out to Home Depot after the kids and I had a snack, and got the carpet we'd picked out. M-lady watched the kids, who generally had a good time, although there was one melt-down reported. When I got back, Bud helped me unload the car, and then we watched some TV together before dinner.

After the kids ate, we played and watched a little bit more TV before having a snack and getting ready for bed. Buster was really tired after not napping again today, and fell asleep almost immediately after a story and a quick video.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Working On A New Bed

M-lady was up with the kids first. I came awake around 8:30, and joined the family after they'd had some breakfast. M-lady got back in bed for a little while, and I watched a little bit of TV with the kids.

Around mid-morning we packed up and headed off to the mall. We picked up a birthday gift for M-lady which she'd scoped out on her trip to the mall earlier in the week, and then headed to Macy's to shop for a mattress for Buster. He is definitely capable of climbing into his crib, and has tried to climb out a couple of times, but had an adult there to stop him. He's probably capable of climbing out. So it's time to graduate.

We picked out a mattress pretty quickly, but the service was a little slow. I managed to entertain the kids while we waited with my iPhone, and they were overall very well behaved. After we managed to get the mattress purchased and scheduled for delivery, we headed over to the food court to get lunch. The kids and I had Jamba Juice, which they really enjoyed.

After lunch we walked around a little bit more before heading back to the car and heading for home. It was stormy today, and Buster requested to play outside when we got home, but we convinced him to come in.

We had fun playing in the afternoon. There was some sword fighting and pirating, and some video gaming. I tried to get Buster to take a nap, without success. We got as far as a story in his room, but he ran away before I could get him into his crib.

Friend A and Aunt O arrived in the afternoon to chat and hang out a bit. I ran to the grocery store while they were here, and the kids seemed to stay entertained. Buster had fun coloring and stamping, and Bud and M-lady were working on a pirate medallion for him.

I started working on another pear pie when I got home, and got it into the oven shortly after Friend A and Aunt O took their leave. I played with the boys a little bit more, and we started on dinner a short time later.

The kids ate well, and Bud practiced piano after dinner. The whole family played with the Kinect a bit after that, and we all had a good time. We ran upstairs to take showers a little after 7:00, which left time to come back down and have some fresh pear pie for snack before heading back up to bed.

Bedtime was pretty straightforward, and I was able to read stories to Bud for a bit before we turned out the light around 8:30. He fell asleep pretty quickly.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Special Birthday

Bud was up around 8:00, and Buster up a short time later. I got up with Bud initially, then headed back to bed. M-lady got up with Buster, and then came back to bed with both kids. That lasted for a few minutes before I rolled out of bed and took the kids downstairs for breakfast. It was M-lady's birthday, so I tried to generally take care of the kids today.

It wasn't long before we packed up and all headed out to the title company together, where M-lady and I finally signed the docs for our house re-fi. The kids were really well behaved as we signed docs for nearly an hour, first playing with the coloring books offered by the title company, and then playing with the iPhones that I brought for them.

We did a quick swing by a bookstore for M-lady to take a quick peek, and the kids opted to stay in the car with me while M-lady looked. Then it was off home to get some lunch.

Bud was a bit grumpy when we got home, and headed up to his room for a bit. Buster watched an episode of Backyardigans before lunch. After lunch, we had M-lady open her birthday gifts, which she enjoyed. We all watched her play a new dance game together.

Buster wanted to watch Animusic, but our disc finally gave up the ghost and developed a big crack in it, rendering it unplayable. I think the cause was little hands not removing it gently from its case. Buster was a bit upset that he couldn't watch Animusic, and eventually had a meltdown in a minor conflict with Bud.

Buster took a nap after that, clearly being a bit tired, and Bud and I were able to play together a little bit. We read a story together, and then I took a nap for a bit. M-lady dashed out to run an errand, and I got up to hang out with Bud around the time she got back.

Buster woke from his nap in a good mood, and we all piled into the car and headed out to get dinner at Red Robin. It was a little busier than usual for a weeknight, and because it was raining fairly steadily I dropped the family off by the door and then went to look for parking. I was able to find a spot quickly and join them.

The kids were good at dinner, and ate well. We headed home happy and full. When we got home, Bud watched some of the Bolshoi Nutcracker which we'd recorded earlier. He liked the dancing, but was trying to make sense of the story.

That led to snack time and bedtime, which was a little accelerated. We had friends coming over to work on a dance at about 8:00, so M-lady received them as I read the kids a couple of stories and got them tucked in. I got their lights turned out shortly after 8:00. Bud snuck out once, and Buster called out a couple of times, but they were generally very good about going to sleep this evening.

Happy Birthday, M-lady! We're all so happy to have you as a wife and mother!

Monday, December 27, 2010

New Game

The kids were up this morning long before M-lady and I were ready to be up. I slept with Buster in his room from about 7:30 to 8:30 or so, and then came back to bed and slept until about 9:30. M-lady got up around 8:30 and got some breakfast for the kids. Bud was up around 7:30 as well, but fortunately, can get himself dressed and entertain himself.

M-lady took off to do some shopping at about 10:00. The kids and I played with Lego for a little while, and then headed out to a nearby game store to pick up a new Kinect for our Xbox. This was really a family purchase rather than a hardcore gaming purchase, but I'm very interested in the technology. The kids were really well behaved on the outing.

Bud wanted to play with Lego again when we got home, so we did that for a little while before getting the Kinect set up. Bud continued with the Lego while Buster and I got the Kinect in place and wired up.

Bud came down as we finished up and started playing Kinectimals. It took a short time to get used to the interface, but he got the hang of it pretty quickly, and had a great time playing with his Cheetah cub (which he named "Bengal"). We took a break for lunch around 1:00, and then Bud got back to the game. He was still playing when M-lady arrived home.

I played with Buster a bit while Bud was playing, and we eventually sat down to watch an episode of Backyardigans before he headed for a nap. He was a little reluctant, but fell asleep around 4:00ish. Bud played Lego, first with M-lady and then on his own, until he came to see if I was awake.

I played Lego with him for a few minutes before getting started on baking a pie with the all the pears we accumulated over the holidays. We had guests coming over later in the evening, and I managed to get the pie in the oven just in time to help pick up downstairs a bit.

Friends D and T, with their kids K and D, and T's parents arrived a bit after 6:00. D and I ran out to pick up our cycling kits for next season which had arrived at a team member's house recently, and got back in time to help keep an eye on the kids. Bud was good about letting his guests play with his Lego, and they all had a pretty good time together.

We had dinner around 7:00, and everyone ate well. After dinner, the kids staged an energetic lightsaber battle. There was a lot of shrieking and running around involved. There was a very short break for cake and pie, and then more running around and shrieking.

Our guests left a bit after 8:00, and I got the kids into the shower. Both kids were well behaved, and I got them cleaned up pretty quickly. I did the bedtime routine with Bud, and we read a story and turned the light our just before 9:00. Bud asked if friends K and D could come over tomorrow night, too, so I guess he had a pretty good time in the evening.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Getting Out And About

Buster was up early this morning, around 6:45. M-lady was up early with the kids, and her folks took their leave to head for home before 8:00. M-lady came back to bed around 8:30, with the kids in tow.

After fending off some unintentional kicks from Buster, I got up and got breakfast for the kids. After breakfast, we watched an episode of Sesame Street. M-lady got up to play with the kids while I turned in for a while after the show ended.

I got up and got dressed a little later, and we all packed up into the car and headed out as the sun was just starting to dry up the rain puddles. We headed up to Fry's, where we had a good time wandering around. After Fry's, we picked up some lunch, then headed over to the grocery store where I took the kids in to pick up a few things while M-lady went into the Office Max next door. We headed back home after a pleasant family outing.

The kids were excited to play outside for a little while after we got home, and I got a bunch of boxes put into recycling while they played. We eventually came inside for a snack, and played a little bit of Xbox before Buster headed for his nap. Buster was a bit reluctant to take a nap, but was clearly exhausted. He eventually fell asleep with M-lady.

I played with Bud for a bit, working on Lego. We had a good time, and got near completing his new big Lego set. Bud eventually practiced piano with M-lady, around the time Buster was waking up. After Bud finished up practicing, the kids had a good time playing together while M-lady got dinner together. The kids ate pretty well, and then went back to playing together after dinner.

We let the kids play a little later in the evening than usual, and started snack time about 20 minutes late. I got Buster into bed with the lights out around 8:30, and he fell asleep a short time later. Hopefully he'll sleep in a little later tomorrow morning.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Full Christmas


Bud got up at about 7:00. We heard him get up, go back to bed, and then head downstairs to check out the tree and stockings. He was back in our room around 7:15, bouncing off the walls with excitement. Buster was up a few minutes later, and we all headed downstairs to check out Santa's handiwork at about 7:30.

We opened stockings first, which was fun for everyone. The kids received little Lego sets in their stockings, among other things, which kept them entertained while we got breakfast together.

After breakfast, we set up video chats with various families, which let us do the gift opening sort of in person. The kids were really excited about opening gifts, but were good about thanking people and holding the gifts up to the camera to let family see what they got.

Bud got lost in some of the books he received as gifts while opening gifts this year. He would see something that interested him, and then forget about all his other gifts. We had to move him along a couple of times. It's exciting that he can read so solidly, though!

Around the time we were finishing up with Grandma W and Granddad B, Ama, Agu, Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C arrived. We signed off the video call, and started another big round of gift opening. We managed to get everything opened just in time for lunch / Christmas Dinner.

The food was good, and we did manage to get everyone at the table together for a short period of time. The kids ate pretty well.

After lunch, there was more playtime with the kids. Eventually Cousin C started indicating he was ready to go home, so Aunt O and Uncle C packed up and the family said their goodbyes. I took Buster upstairs for a nap, where we passed out for a little while. Bud apparently played with M-lady while we napped, and they had a good time together.

I woke in time to play with Bud and his new Lego sets for a little while before Buster woke up. After he joined us, we watched a little bit of TV and played some Rock Band before dinner. Dinner was fairly sequential this evening. Both kids ate pretty well, though.

After dinner it was straight into bath time, where the kids had fun splashing around. I got them cleaned up in the bath, and M-lady handled most of the getting into PJs after the bath.

Bud and I worked on his Lego a bit more before bed in lieu of a bedtime story. We turned out the light just a little later than usual, and he passed out pretty quickly. Overall it was a great day, and we had a good time spending it with family both virtually and locally.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Excitement

The kids were up at the usual time this morning, and M-lady handled the first wave. Bud started working on Lego immediately, and Buster came and hung out with us in bed a little. Eventually we roused ourselves and got some breakfast, and then I headed off to the grocery store with Buster.

We had a good time there, and while it was busy, it wasn't insane. Buster opted to walk rather than ride in the cart, and was very good about staying close. We managed to get everything we needed, and headed home.

I spent most of the rest of the morning working on Lego with Bud. Buster came and played with us occasionally. We made more progress on finding all the pieces we need for his big set.

Lunch time came up before too long, and I got lunch with Buster. Bud had eaten a fairly big snack while Buster and I were at the store, so wasn't too hungry. After lunch, M-lady and I spent most of the early afternoon doing a toy audit and trying to clean up the house a bit. We managed to corral a number of toys which the kids have either outgrown or don't play with anymore, and extracted them from circulation. We also made inroads on returning all the Lincoln Logs, Duplo, Bristle Blocks, and Duplo to their appropriate containers.

I took a nap in the later afternoon, while the kids were happily playing and pretending to be explorer/adventurers in the living room. M-lady managed to get Buster to take a nap around 4:00, and headed out to run some quick errands. While she was gone, Bud and I watched an episode of Meteorite Men, which he really enjoys.

M-lady returned and we got started on dinner. She and Bud ate first, I ate shortly after them, and Buster ate a bit later when he woke from his nap. After he'd finished up, the kids helped me bake cookies, which managed to really ratchet up their excitement level.

Bud had a bit of a meltdown around PJ time, clearly a bit tired and over-excited. He eventually came around, and we headed downstairs to get a snack. We discovered that Buster had helped himself to the cooling cookies, aided by his recent mastery of step-stools.

After cookies, we read The Night Before Christmas, and then put the kids to bed. Buster allowed himself to be tucked in pretty quickly, and went to sleep quietly. M-lady had a little more work getting Bud to bed, and reported that he was still buzzing when the lights went out. He also dropped off before too long. Hopefully they'll sleep in a little bit tomorrow morning.

Happy Holidays to All!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Lego Driven

Bud got me out of bed around 7:30, this morning, and once he was situated and dressed, started playing with his Lego. I headed back to bed for about an hour.

M-lady got up and headed out the door with Bud a bit before 9:00 to go to the Container Store to pick up more bins to put his Lego in. Buster was just up at the time, so we headed downstairs to get some breakfast, and played together a bit. Eventually we watched about half an episode of Sesame Street before M-lady and Bud got back.

When they arrived, Bud and I got to work on the Lego again. We were finishing up the sorting, and when that was done later in the day, we worked on gathering all the pieces to put together a set which he had received as a gift for his birthday last year, but never assembled.

We took a break after a bit, and Bud got a snack before M-lady took him to a piano lesson. Buster and I played with Lego a bit, and then got some lunch ourselves. I had a good time hanging out with Buster.

Bud and M-lady returned, and I got some lunch for Bud. Buster ended up taking a nap in the afternoon, so Bud and I were able to put more time into the Lego.

M-lady went out to run an errand and pick up dinner in the evening, and the kids watched a Backyardigans while she was out. We let them watch a little more after she returned to get a few bites of dinner ourselves before inviting them to join us for dinner.

The kids ate well, and we did a bath a short time later in the evening. I was able to bathe both kids, and then played and read stories with Bud before bed. We turned out the light around 8:20, and he fell asleep pretty quickly after that.

Overall we got a little more than halfway through gathering up the needed pieces for the set, so I'm hopeful we can start on construction tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Buckets Of Lego

Bud and Buster let us sleep in a little bit this morning, not really rolling us out of bed until a little after 8:00. Buster refused to get up until some time past 8:30.

I worked with Bud to sort some more Lego before we even got dressed. After dressing and having some breakfast, we did some more sorting and unearthing, and eventually headed downstairs for a break to play a little bit of Rock Band. At about 10:30, we packed up and headed out to go get me a hair cut.

After M-lady and family dropped me off at my appointment, they wandered around a local community downtown for a little while. They even swung by to see how my haircut was getting on. After I finished up, I joined them and we loaded back into the car.

We hit one errand on the way, then headed home for lunch. The kids ate a solid lunch, and afterward we played for a little while before shooting for naps. The kids ended up not napping, but I snoozed for about an hour.

I got up to help Bud with Lego for a while longer before we took a TV break. The kids watched a holiday special of Penguins of Madagascar while I chatted with family on the phone. Dinner time came up pretty quickly after that.

The kids ended up eating pretty well, and Bud practiced piano for a while after dinner. After piano we got a few more minutes of Lego play in before bedtime. I was looking for missing pieces, and just before bed realized that there was another grocery bag full of Lego which I'd confiscated a while ago when Bud hadn't cleaned it up when asked. I pulled it out, and we realized we had a lot more sorting to do tomorrow. I think M-lady will take Bud to shop for some more organizing containers as well.

I read a story with Bud at bedtime, and he fell asleep pretty quickly. Hopefully we can sleep in a little bit again tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Sorting

The kids were up around 8:00 this morning, and Ama and Agu helped out in the early morning. They packed up and headed out to visit and stay with Aunt O and Uncle C at about 9:30, which was about the time I got up as well.

M-lady did some work in the morning, and I played with the kids. Bud got excited about trying to sort and stow his Lego collection, so we started on that task. We decided to sort by color, into different boxes and bags. Buster helped out as well, and was pretty good about taking a handful of red pieces and correctly delivering them to the red box.

We kept at that until lunchtime, which probably got us about a quarter of the way through Bud's collection. We'll work on it some more tomorrow. For lunch, the kids had been promised Jamba Juice, so I loaded them up and we headed out to pick it up. Buster doesn't really like the store, because it's loud with blenders, but was willing to tolerate it to get his smoothie. We brought the booty home and supplemented the juice with oatmeal.

M-lady took the kids to the library after lunch, while I worked on some documents. After they returned, I headed out to run an errand while the kids played outside for a bit. They were still playing outside when I got back, but I managed to convince them to come in and play some Rock Band with me.

M-lady took a nap while we watched Winnie-the-Pooh and I cleaned up the house a little bit. Around 6:00, friends of mine from work arrived for a product ship/holiday party. The kids interacted with everyone really well, and Bud was excited to show off his Rock Band drumming skills, which were much admired.

M-lady gave the kids baths, and I put Buster to bed. Buster took a little while to fall asleep, but I don't blame him since the party was still ongoing. After about 8:30 both kids were out, though.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Venturing Out

M-lady was up early for meetings this morning, so the kids got up with Ama and Agu. I managed to sleep in again, taking advantage of our guests a bit. I rousted myself around 9:30, and M-lady joined us a short time later.

There was various playing in the morning. Lunch came up reasonably quickly, and the kids ate pretty well. After lunch, I made an expedition to Fry's, and Buster opted to come with me. Bud decided to stay home and go for a walk with Ama and Agu.

We had a good time on the trip. We listened to Christmas music in the car, and chatted together on the drive. When we arrived, Buster was very helpful in the store, carrying some of the items for me as we acquired them. He did pause for a few minutes to watch an Animusic scene on one of the demo TVs, but I managed to get him moving again before too long. We made it out to the car again without incident, and headed home.

I played with both boys a bit at home, and then worked on getting Buster to take a nap around 3:00. He resisted for about an hour, and then fell asleep around 4:00. During that time, Bud had a good time playing with Agu. Eventually, M-lady joined Buster in his nap.

Buster and M-lady came downstairs again around 5:30, and we watched a little bit of the football game before I turned on a recorded episode of Sesame Street. We turned it off again before it was done to have dinner. Both kids ate well.

After dinner, I played some more Rock Band with the kids until snack time. I did the bedtime routine with Bud this evening, and we read a couple of stories together before turning out the light around 8:30. He went to sleep pretty quickly. Buster held on a little longer, but eventually dropped off.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

A Little Cooped Up

M-lady and Ama and Agu handled the kids this morning, and I was able to sleep in again, which was nice. M-lady and I did notice the small nearby earthquake at about 9:30... it was apparently a 3.1 located just a few miles away. Nothing fell down, though... it just rattled some of the doors.

Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C arrived around 10:00, and the kids went down to play with them. I got myself up and joined shortly. Eventually Uncle C and the kids and I wound up playing some Rock Band together, right up until brunch time. M-lady and her parents had made waffles and eggs for brunch, and everyone ate pretty well.

There was a little more play time after brunch, and then a cake to celebrate Uncle C's and M-lady's birthdays. Buster devoured his slice of cake quickly, and asked for more before anyone else had eaten more than a bite.

After cake, Aunt O and family packed up and headed for home. We tried to get Buster to nap a short time later, unsuccessfully. I managed to nap a bit myself, but Buster never fell asleep.

I rejoined the family at about 5:30, and we had dinner a short time later. I set Buster up to watch some Animusic after dinner, and snack time crept up pretty quickly. M-lady and her parents again did the work of putting the kids to bed.

I'm looking forward to becoming more helpful again over the next couple of days, and trying to get the kids outside a bit. It's supposed to rain all week, but maybe we can take them on some outings of some sort.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Getting Around a Little

I was able to sleep in a bit this morning, and M-lady and her parents played with the kids in the morning. I got out of bed a little after lunchtime, took a shower, and headed downstairs to see where things stood.

After getting some lunch for myself, I spent a lot of the afternoon hanging out with the kids. We played some video games and watched TV, which was really about the most activity I was up for. Buster was getting tired a little after 2:00, so I managed to convince him to come upstairs for a nap. He dropped off around 3:00.

Bud and I played a little bit of Rock Band together, which was fun. I also watched some of the Thursday night football game I had recorded. Buster was up again around 5:00, and we had some dinner a short time later.

The kids ate well, and I was able to hang out with them a little more after dinner. They started forgetting I was somewhat tender, and I had to remind them to try not to jostle me a few times. We had snack time and bed time as usual. I helped Bud into his PJs (sort of) and read him a story. He then read a story to Ama before turning in.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Grandparents To The Rescue

The morning was fairly standard, although M-lady left for work a little early and I had to take both kids to school for Bud's drop off. Buster wasn't happy about going, and pitched a small fit as I got him into the car. Once there he settled down, and I was able to get him into his coat and shoes.

Since it was wet out, Bud's classroom was open, and Buster and I waved goodbye to him as he headed in. Buster and I then tromped back through the wet to head home and get Buster some breakfast. He was munching away when Nanny J arrived a short time later.

I worked from home in the morning, and M-lady arrived home around the same time Bud got back from school. M-lady then took me to have a small procedure done, which went well and didn't take too long. We were back around 3:30.

I was confined to bed rest for the remainder of the day, however, and it was important to keep the kids off the bed (to prevent inadvertent kicks to the incision). They didn't entirely understand the reason for the restriction, but generally complied. Bud hung out with me for a while, and we watched some shows on the laptop together.

Ama and Agu arrived a little later in the afternoon, and the kids seemed happy to see them, as usual. I think they all had a good time playing together in the later afternoon and evening. The kids went to bed without any problems as far as I know, and slept well during the night.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Short Entry

I overslept a little bit this morning, and got up near 7:40. M-lady got up a few minutes before I did, and started rousing Bud. Bud was responsive, which was good, so we got back on track for the morning routine without too much trouble. M-lady took Bud to school at 8:15, and I played with Buster for a while, throwing balls into a bucket from various places around the living room.

Nanny J arrived at 8:45, and Buster picked up playing with her. The cleaners arrived a short time later, and I headed off for work.

I got home around 5:40, a little later than usual. Nanny J got dinner for the kids while M-lady and I got ready to head out to a dance rehearsal. Bud was a little sad that we were leaving, but looking forward to seeing Babysitter D, who he likes quite a bit. The kids were done with dinner an playing with Nanny J when we left.

We got back after bedtime. Buster had put himself to bed shortly after Babysitter D arrived at about 7:30, and Bud played games with him for a bit before heading to bed himself. Both kids were sleeping soundly when we got home. I expect Buster will be up a little early tomorrow, though.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Feeling Fine

Buster was awake around 7:30, but not really interested in getting up until about 8:00, after M-lady had left to get to an early meeting. Bud slept in, getting up around 8:30. He was still in his PJs when Nanny J arrived, just as the kids were having some breakfast.

Bud wasn't running a fever this morning, and seemed to be as energetic as ever. We kept him home from school, but he'll be fine to head back tomorrow. I stayed and worked from home until about lunch time, when I checked Bud one more time before heading to the office.

The kids apparently had a good afternoon. Bud declined to take a nap, apparently. The kids were having a good time playing in the living room when I got home around 5:00. They were excited about the 8 packages which arrived today... a new household record. After Nanny J left, I managed to defray a little bit of the excitement by opening one of the boxes, which was a DVR we'd ordered for the family.

We set up the DVR and watched a little bit of TV together, and got started on dinner a little after 6:00. M-lady arrived home as the kids were eating. Bud had a solid dinner, while Buster deferred a portion of his meal.

We got Bud going on homework after dinner, and I played with Buster in the living room for a bit. Eventually, M-lady managed the snack for the kids, and I helped Bud into his PJs after that.

Buster and I read some stories together, and turned out the light a little bit after 8:00. He fell asleep pretty quickly.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Little Ill

The morning was fairly straightforward. I worked pretty late last night, and was a little groggy this morning. I got Bud out of bed around 7:30, though, and we headed downstairs for breakfast around 7:45. Buster was up a short time later, and I hung out with him while M-lady took Bud to school.

M-lady returned home after dropping off Bud, and I tried to snooze for a few minutes after Nanny J arrived. Buster wanted to play, and jumped on the bed next to me for a while. He was eventually enticed away by Nanny J.

I headed off to work a short time later. Bud apparently came home from school, and then fell asleep before lunch. Nanny J checked on him and found he was running a pretty high fever. She called, and I headed home to check on the kid.

Bud was laid out when I got home. I gave him a dose of Tylenol, set him up with a movie on the iPhone, and let him rest. He was perking up quite a bit within an hour as the fever subsided.

He tried to have a snack in the later afternoon, but barfed it up. Other than that, with the Tylenol in his system, he seemed pretty chipper. We watched some videos on the computer for a little while before Nanny J left a bit after 5:00.

Buster and Bud and I watched TV for a bit, and we were getting started on dinner when M-lady arrived home. I just made ramen for the kids, on the hope that Bud could keep it down. I checked his temperature again, and it was fine at dinner time.

M-lady played with the kids after dinner while I tried to catch up on work a bit. Bud had a few grapes at snack time, and didn't have any trouble keeping them and his dinner down. I helped Bud get ready for bed around 8:00.

Bud's fever had started inching back up again, so I gave him another dose of Tylenol before bed. Hopefully he'll have a quiet night.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Toy Repository

I rolled Bud out of bed this morning around 7:30. He was a bit reluctant to get up, but I managed to get him on his feet to head downstairs and get some breakfast. He was a little frenetic this morning, but was ready to go to school in time.

I took Bud to school, while M-lady waited for Nanny J with Buster. The drop off went fine, and I headed off to work. M-lady reported that Buster had fun playing with Bud's Lego while he was out.

I got home around 5:00, and the kids greeted me enthusiastically. I was able to drop my stuff, and we said goodbye to Nanny J.

I played with the kids in the living room for a little while, where they took ornaments off the tree to play with them. Between the ornaments made from Lego, and the ones that make sounds, and the soft felt balls, the Christmas tree is a whole set of entertaining pieces.

After getting most of the ornaments back on the tree, we watched a little TV together before getting started on dinner. M-lady arrived home a little later than usual, and had a guest in tow: she's having a dress made, and the dressmaker came by for a fitting. The kids were a little shy at first, but Bud was interested in watching the fitting and talked with the dressmaker a little bit.

M-lady took the dressmaker back while the kids and I watched a little more TV, including some Animusic before getting a snack. M-lady made it back in time to read stories with Bud at bedtime. I read a few books with Buster, watched a video, and turned out the light. Buster didn't fall asleep for a long time... not sure what was keeping him restless. He finally dropped off solidly around 10:00.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Decorating the Tree

Bud was up around 7:30, but was willing to let us sleep in until about 8:00. At that point, I got up and started getting ready to go to a bike race, and Buster woke as well. I headed off for the race around 8:30, and M-lady managed the kids in the morning.

They apparently had a good morning together, and all went to run some errands very successfully. They managed to mail off some boxes at the post office, and each child got to help put a package on the scale and put it in the drop box.

The kids were playing outside with M-lady watching when I got back from the ride, a bit after 11:00. I played with them a bit after I unloaded, including pushing Buster on his trike for a little while. We headed in before too long to get some lunch.

The kids ate pretty well, and after lunch we had a nice video chat with Grandma W and Granddad B. We've been using the iPhone with Facetime for video chats, which has let me swing the camera around a little faster, and made it easier to follow the kids (rather than toting a laptop). The kids had fun, and interacted with the grandparents pretty well, although I haven't gotten Bud to play on the piano for them yet.

After the call, we got down to business on decorating the tree. I untangled lights with Bud's help, and got those strung up. We put out the tree skirt, and then the kids had a good time hanging their ornaments. They got to open up the new ones they received this year from the grandparents, which all included a pirate theme. When we finished up, the tree was decorated, the stockings were up, and a number of secondary decorations were out as well.

Dinner time came up before too long. M-lady put in an order for sushi, and the kids elected to come with me to pick it up. It was a brief outing, and when we got back, we all had a solid sushi dinner. Buster really likes California rolls, but wants to have the sticky rice wiped off his hands every couple minutes.

After dinner, I played a little bit of Rock Band with the kids, and then it was shower time. Shower led into snack time, which brought us to bedtime. Bud and I read some stories and bedtime, but he fell asleep really quickly and a little early, around 8:15. I guess he was pretty tired.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Second Performance

The kids were up pretty early this morning, and M-lady got up with them. I helped out with Bud early at one point, but was able to get back to bed. M-lady took the kids downstairs and got them breakfast, and got them started on a craft. I was able to sleep in until about 9:30.

After I got up, we cleaned up the living room a little, took the Christmas decorations out of storage, and then loaded up and headed out to acquire a Christmas tree. The kids were pretty excited, and had fun running around the lot. We eventually all decided on a 7 foot Noble, loaded onto the top of the car, and brought it home. Bud helped while I got it down and un-netted, and Buster played in the front yard as M-lady and I got it set up in the living room.

After the tree was set up, Bud helped vacuum up pine needles for a little while before getting some lunch that M-lady prepared. I finished up the cleanup, and then joined them for lunch. After lunch, the kids and I played a video game for a short time before it was time to get ready to go to Bud's second piano recital.

We all dressed appropriately, and headed out a little before 3:00. We arrived a few minutes early, so sat in the car together before heading in. While sitting there, Buster dozed off in his seat, so I remained in the car with him while M-lady took Bud in for his performance. He apparently did a great job, and was patient with the rest of the recital. They got back just as Buster was waking up, a bit over an hour later. When I asked Bud how the recital went, his reply was: "Great! I had two cookies! And Punch!" He added, after a little prodding, that he played his pieces well, too.

We got home around 5:00, and M-lady was able to snooze a little bit while I watched the kids. We had a nice video chat with Granddad B and Grandma Nese, and then played a little bit more before I started on dinner. Around dinner time, both kids sort of melted down, though. Bud was sulky because he got disciplined, and Buster was ignoring dinner.

We decided to scrap our plans to go to a friend's dessert party, since the kids were in a bad mood. Instead, the kids played and helped M-lady with another craft. We did the usual snack and bedtime routines, and the kids fell asleep pretty quickly. I think the kids got up just a little too early this morning, and coupled with the excitement of approaching Christmas, they were just a little extra tired in the evening.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Getting Rainy

I rolled Bud out of bed this morning a little before 7:30. He was a little slow getting out of bed, but moved along after he got up. M-lady took him to school while I watched and read stories with Buster. Nanny J arrived shortly, and I headed for work.

I arrived home around 5:00. M-lady had arrived earlier and taken Bud to his piano lesson. Buster was happy to see me, and ran up as I opened the door, asking, "Did you have a good day?"

Buster and I said goodbye to Nanny J, and then watched a little bit of TV. I decided to order a pizza for dinner, although I checked with Buster first if he thought it was a good idea. He agreed with me, and I convinced him to come with me to pick it up after it was ordered.

It was starting to rain lightly as we got in the car, and Buster thought it was really funny when he felt the drops and was "getting rainy". We had a nice chat on the drive, and he was really good at the pizza place as I paid and picked up the pizza.

We arrived home just after Bud and M-lady, and all had a good dinner together. After dinner, we all played some Rock Band 3 until it was time to have a snack and get ready for bed. Buster really likes "You Give Love A Bad Name", and sings along as best he can.

Snack and bedtime were pretty standard. Bud and I took turns reading to each other, and the kids were asleep before 9:00.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Occasional Interruptions

Bud was a little slow to get rolling out of bed this morning, but was up in time to get breakfast and be ready for school. Buster was really slow to get up, and I just managed to get him dressed before we had to head out. M-lady had an early meeting this morning, so I was taking Buster with me to drop off Bud.

It was a little rainy this morning, so the kids had their hoods up. Fortunately, the school opens the classrooms early on rainy days, so the kids and families don't have to wait in the rain. Bud darted inside, and Buster and I headed back home to await Nanny J.

I managed to pull a muscle in my back last night, so I opted to work from home today (read: work from bed, prone). I holed myself up in the bedroom with my laptop, and got some work done this morning. Buster seemed to enjoy playing with Nanny J. They went and picked up Bud from school around noon, and I came down to get myself some lunch while they were eating.

In the afternoon, Bud wandered in now and again. Unfortunately, I had to shoo him out, as I was in meetings most of the afternoon. He spent part of the afternoon reading a book to himself on the floor of the bedroom.

After Buster woke from his nap, he came in to see what I was doing. I was out of meetings by then, so I could chat with the kids a little while I worked. I think they were disappointed that I wasn't watching a movie on my laptop, though.

We said goodbye to Nanny J a little after 5:00, and played together a bit. After the kids ran around some, we played a little bit of Rock Band before getting dinner together. M-lady arrived home as I was putting dinner on the table for the kids, and she and I started to get ready to go to our dance rehearsal.

Babysitter G didn't make it this evening, though, so M-lady went to rehearsal while I stayed with the kids. We played a little bit of Wii before having a snack and getting ready for bed. The kids were really cooperative, and went to sleep pretty quickly.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Broccoli Bargain

I rolled Bud out of bed around 7:30, and after he finally actually woke up, he was pretty quick to get dressed and get some breakfast. Buster preferred to lounge in bed, though.

M-lady and I had a parent-teacher conference with Bud's teacher this morning, so Nanny J arrived early while both M-lady and I took Bud to school. Buster still wasn't up when Nanny J arrived, but didn't seem disappointed that she would be getting him dressed.

We dropped Bud off for his class, and then met with his teacher. Bud is doing fine in school. He's still apparently on the shyer side of things, but is much better than he used to be a couple of years ago. He has friends that he plays with, and is very conscientious about doing his work. Go Bud!

M-lady and I headed off for work after that. I got home around 5:00, where Buster was playing with Nanny J and Bud was playing in his room. Both kids seemed pretty happy to see me, and we played together a bit after saying goodbye to Nanny J.

After a small snack, we watched a little TV and played a little bit of Xbox before starting on dinner. M-lady arrived home as the kids were getting set to eat, and we all ate pretty well. Buster neglected his broccoli at dinner, though.

After dinner, we all played some Rock Band 3 together. It's fun to play as a family. After a couple of tunes, Bud did his piano practice, and then we had snack time.

Bud requested some walnuts for snack, so I cracked some for him. Buster was induced to eat a couple of pieces of broccoli with bribes of M&ms. After snack, we did a standard bedtime routine. I read stories with Bud, and we traded off the reading duties. I also verified that he can read to himself without moving his lips.

Bud went to sleep on his own tonight, and fell asleep pretty quickly.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Sockless

I rolled Bud out of bed this morning a little before 7:30, and after a little bit of complaining that he didn't like to wake up in the morning, he got himself out of bed and dressed. Buster also lounged in his crib for a while.

I got Bud downstairs for breakfast, where he opted to try Grape-Nuts for the first time. I had to explain that they have nothing to do with grapes or nuts. He seemed to enjoy the bowl, though. Buster came down for breakfast as Bud was finishing up, and wanted to try Grape-Nuts, too. He didn't like it as much, though, and ended up having an Eggo.

M-lady took Bud to school, and I played with Buster for a little while before Nanny J arrived. Buster has been happy to see her each morning: I think they generally have a good time together.

I arrived home around 5:00 to again find the kids singing and dancing musicals. That morphed into a sword fight by the time I got back from dropping my stuff upstairs. We said goodbye to Nanny J, and played together for a bit before watching a some TV.

M-lady arrived home a bit later, and we got dinner together. Buster has a thing about taking his socks off at dinner time... no one's quite sure why. This evening, he took his socks off, then ran upstairs to let M-lady know that it was dinner time by telling her that he took his socks off. Which apparently actually means dinner to him now.

Bud ate a solid meal, and Buster nibbled a little bit. After dinner, Bud practiced piano, and then did his entire week's homework assignment. We had a pretty sparse snack, and did the bedtime routine.

Both kids were good about going to bed. I read a story and watched a video with Buster, who fell asleep pretty quickly.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Rockin' On Drums

The morning was fairly standard, although Bud was a little reluctant to get out of bed. With a little nagging, I got him up, dressed, breakfasted, and ready to go to school. M-lady took him to school, and I worked on getting Buster up. He was also a bit sluggish, but of course didn't have anywhere to be this morning. He did end up getting up before Nanny J arrived, and was just starting on breakfast when she came in.

The kids were having a blast, dancing and singing "The Boys Are Back" from High School Musical 3 when I got home. Bud was even dressed the part, wearing a bandanna around his head.

We said goodbye to Nanny J, and then danced and sang a little bit more. We eventually wound down a little bit, and went to the play room to watch a little bit of football before playing some Lego Indiana Jones. I had a work meeting to call into at 6:00, but I was able to play the game with Bud while I listened in on the meeting.

M-lady arrived home a short time later, and was kind enough to prepare dinner and feed the boys while I finished up the meeting. The kids apparently ate really well. After they ate, M-lady conducted piano practice while I ate my dinner.

After practicing piano, Bud played makeshift drums while Buster sang (an adaptation of "Free Falling" by Tom Petty). Buster had a very particular rhythm he wanted played on the drums for the song, and he really got into the performance aspects of the singing.

I guided the kids to play some Rock Band, and we had a great time at it. Bud is spectacular on the drums... he now totally owns Easy mode. I've got to convince him to move up to Medium difficulty.

That took us to snack time, and bed time. I read a few stories with Bud before we turned out the light, around 8:30. He fell asleep pretty quickly.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Quick Outing

The kids slept in a little bit today, which was good since they were up a little late last night. M-lady handled the kids at first, and I took over around 9:30, getting them some breakfast.

The kids had a good breakfast, and M-lady picked up watching them around 10:00. I got myself ready to go for a bike ride, and headed out around 10:30. I got back an hour later, and found the kids playing happily.

M-lady headed out shortly to a lunch meeting with some friends, and I hung out with the kids for the early afternoon. We decided to go to Jamba Juice to pick up some lunch, and brought it back home just as it started to rain. We had the Jamba for lunch, and then had video chats with the grandparents for a bit.

The kids had fun chatting with the grandparents, and Bud showed off Clifford to them. After chatting, we all played on the Sesame Street website for a little while, and then headed downstairs to get a snack. After having some fruit, we all shared a little bit of popcorn for our snack as well.

M-lady arrived home as we were settling in front of the TV for a bit. I retired to take a nap, and M-lady set up some culinary crafts for the kids, which were evidently pretty successful. Bud did a solid piano practice as well after they wrapped up the craft.

I joined again around 5:00ish, and played with the kids a bit. M-lady fried rice for dinner, which the kids loved. They ate large helpings. I usually add some salt and pepper to my fried rice, and the kids wanted to try that as well. Buster wasn't really happy about the pepper, though.

After dinner, I got the kids cleaned up in the shower, and M-lady applied lotion as they came out. They've been having some dry skin patches, most notably on Bud's knuckles. We need to get him to put lotion on his hands every time he washes them.

The kids and I played a little bit of Lego Indiana Jones before having a snack and heading for bed. Buster was really tired after not taking a nap today, and passed out almost immediately after turning out the light.

Braving the Crowds

M-lady got up with the kids this morning, which was nice. I was up for a little while with Bud, from about 7:40 to 8:15 or so, but was able to get back in bed for a bit while the kids had breakfast with M-lady. Around 9:30, M-lady and I switched places, and I spent some time with the kids while M-lady snoozed.

We read stories together, and then watched some Sesame Street videos on the computer. Eventually I got dressed, and we headed downstairs for a snack. M-lady joined us again before too long, and we packed up and loaded into the car.

We headed to the mall since we hadn't been there in a while. It was definitely crowded, but not a total madhouse. We didn't have anything in particular we were shopping for, which helped. We wandered in an headed over to the food court, where we got some lunch. We ended up sitting outside, since there weren't any tables available inside. It was actually very pleasant outside on the balcony.

We wandered back out, taking the long way, and stopping in at the Lego Store. Both kids were interested in what they had there, and Buster was a little disappointed to leave empty-handed. We headed inside when we got home, and I hoped to get Buster to take a nap, but he wasn't interested.

M-lady took Bud and Buster to the library in the afternoon, which was also pretty crowded. They made a quick trip, and got home before I was able to get back from running my errand at Home Depot. The kids played outside while I worked on getting some more Christmas lights on the house.

The kids went in and had a snack with M-lady while I finished up putting up the lights, and then I sat down and played a little more Lego Indiana Jones with them before we started getting dinner ready. The kids helped make pizza for dinner, and ate well once it was baked.

After dinner, Bud did a good piano rehearsal, and I got a couple of little chores done around the house. After practicing piano, the kids mostly hung out with M-lady while I did a little work in the garage. Snack time came up pretty quick.

The kids had good snacks, and then we headed for bed. I read a story to Bud, and he read one to me. We didn't turn out the light until about 8:45, but he was asleep within about 5 minutes.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Clifford's Arrival

The morning was pretty straightforward. I took Bud to school, and he was good about getting ready to go. Buster was up around the same time, and had some breakfast before Bud and I took off.

Buster and M-lady said goodbye to us as we rolled out the door, and Bud had a good drop off at school. Bud apparently had a good day at school, and came home with a stuffed Clifford (the big red dog). Each child gets to take Clifford home for the weekend after they're Star Student for the week, and then put an entry into Clifford's journal.

Bud had sort of an impromptu playdate with Friend D in the afternoon. M-lady got home in time to take Bud to his piano practice, and I arrived home around 5:00 to find Buster playing with Bud's Lego.

We said goodbye to Nanny J, and then played together for a bit. We were watching videos together on the computer when Bud and M-lady arrived home, bearing dinner.

The kids ate pretty well, and we had some time to play Lego Indiana Jones before snack and bed time.

M-lady had an evening outing, so I read to both kids before tucking them in. The kids were well behaved and understanding that I needed to shuttle between the two a bit. Both went to sleep pretty quickly. Buster called out once after about an hour, but went right back to sleep when I checked in on him.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Morning Home

I met Bud as he was getting out of bed around 7:20. Buster woke a few minutes later, and M-lady got him dressed and ready to go. I read a story to Bud while he finished up dressing, and Buster listened in as well.

We headed down for breakfast, and the kids ate pretty well. They played together for a few minutes before M-lady took Bud to school. Then I sat down with Buster and we read a Golden Classic that I used to love: The Tawny, Scrawny Lion. Buster seemed reasonably entertained.

Nanny J arrived a few minutes later, and she and Buster played together during the morning. The cleaners arrived as well, and Buster watched them from a distance. I worked from home this morning, as a technician was coming to help fix the cable modem.

Nanny J and Buster played ball outside for a bit during the morning, and sounded like they were having a good time. They came back inside for a snack, and then headed off to pick Bud up from school. Bud was surprised to find me at home, and headed in for lunch after hanging out with me for a few minutes. I was able to head off for work a short time later.

The kids seem to have had a good afternoon. They were being pretty rambunctious when I got home, and we said goodbye to Nanny J after I put my things down. I played with them for a little while, and then we watched a little bit of Animusic and played Lego Indiana Jones before M-lady arrived home and assembled dinner.

The kids ate well, and then played a bit before Babysitter G arrived. They started playing with her immediately, and M-lady and I were able to head out to our dance rehearsal without any trouble.

The kids were apparently pretty good for Babysitter G, and both went to sleep quickly.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Chilly December

Bud was up around 7:15, and Buster a few minutes later. The kids were pretty well behaved for the first part of the morning. M-lady had to head in to work a little early, so I took Buster with me to drop Bud off at school.

Buster really wanted to play basketball in the back yard as soon as we headed outside, and had a bit of a meltdown when I tried to get him into the car. Once we were on the way to school, he was fine. The drop off went well, and Buster and I headed home to meet Nanny J. I managed to get Bud inside when we got home, and we played for a little while before Nanny J arrived. I headed off to work a short time later.

The kids seem to have had a good day. I arrived home around 5:00, dropped my stuff, and took over from Nanny J. The kids and I ran around a little bit, and then watched a little TV and played Lego Indiana Jones. We were just getting dinner together when M-lady arrived home.

The kids are reasonable dinners, and Bud got started on homework afterward. He had a break for a quick piano practice, and some playtime with Buster. Bud ended up opting to play more video games rather than snacking this evening.

Bud got a little grumpy around bedtime, but settled in for bed well, and was asleep pretty quickly after we turned out the light around 8:30. Both kids have slept well so far this evening.