Thursday, January 31, 2013

Cat Time

The kids were up a little before 7:30, and Buster focused himself on Lego while I tried to get him dressed. The kids were at breakfast ahead of schedule, and we got going with plenty of time. M-lady took Bud to school and volunteered in his class, and I dropped Buster off.

I was at work a little late, so M-lady got home to relieve Nanny J. The kids had had a good time at TKD, and M-lady got Bud going on his homework. I arrived home around 6:30ish, and helped M-lady get dinner together.

Buster was apparently a cat for most of the evening, and meowed and grabbed at people's legs quite a bit.

Everyone had a good dinner, and then the kids played Xbox together for a bit afterward. I got snack for the kids after that, and then M-lady did piano with Bud while I got Buster ready for bed. Buster and I set up his Tag pen to work with some animal cards, and he enjoyed poking through them a bit before bed.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Excited Evening

Buster came in this morning around 6:45, and then went to play with Bud when Bud was up a bit after 7:00. They were having a great time together, and were a little disappointed when it was time to start getting ready for school.

I met the kids and Nanny J at their TKD class around 5:30, and watched the end of their class. Bud is doing a great job as a leader in the advanced classes, and still looks sharp. Buster was doing a really good job with his kicks today. After class, we said goodbye to Nanny J, I loaded them up, split a Powerbar between them, and we headed home.

M-lady was home when we got there, around 6:15. I showered Buster, and the kids played for a few minutes before Bud finished up his homework with M-lady. We had dinner a short time later, and the kids ate pretty well. Buster was really wound up before and after dinner, pretty much bouncing off the walls. We were unsure what fired him up, but he was lit. After dinner, I played a little bit of Xbox with the kids, and Buster settled down a little. Bud did his piano after a few minutes, and we all had snack a bit before 8:00.

M-lady put Buster to bed, and I did some Scratch programming with Bud before we watched a little bit of a video. We turned the light out around 9:00.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Running A Little Late

Both kids were up this morning before the alarm went off. Buster came in and crawled into bed with us around 7:00, and Bud came in to say hello about 15 minutes later. I rolled out of bed around 7:30, and M-lady and I got the boys going. I got them some breakfast, and I took Bud to school while M-lady took Buster.

The kids seem to have had a good day at school. I got home around 5:45, and M-lady got home a few minutes after Nanny J left. The kids spent a good 40 minutes running around downstairs with the lights off again before M-lady and I got Bud going on homework, and we started getting dinner ready for everyone.

The kids ate pretty well, and Buster and I played some Rock Band after dinner while Bud finished up his homework. We ended up playing a little too long, and didn't start on snack time until after 8:00. The kids ate quite a bit for snacks, as well, so Buster didn't head upstairs to start getting ready for bed until almost 8:30.

Unfortunately I found ants in the kitchen right around that time, so spent some time cleaning that up while M-lady got Buster ready for bed, and Bud got started on his piano practice. I got to read one story with Buster before we turned out the light at about 8:40, and M-lady helped Bud finish up his piano and got him ready for bed while I finished cleaning up the kitchen.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Lights in the Dark

I got up around 7:30, and rolled Bud out of bed a few minutes later. I met Buster heading to our room as I was going to get him up. He climbed into bed with M-lady to snuggle with her for a few minutes before we got going on the morning routine.

I took Bud to school while M-lady took Buster to his class field trip at a nearby park. They were studying dinosaur archaeology, I believe, and had several activities during the morning around that. M-lady hung out nearby, since the park was just far enough away that coming home would be impractical, and then brought Buster home when he finished up.

They met Nanny J at home, and M-lady spent the rest of the afternoon working from home. Buster apparently visited fairly her regularly throughout the afternoon, though.

I got home around 5:30, and we said goodbye to Nanny J a short time later. M-lady got Bud started on his homework, including finishing up his book report, which is due Friday. He took a break to run around with Buster in the dark with their headlamps, and I managed to get Bud back at the table to finish up his homework by letting him work on it with his headlamp.

I got dinner for the family, and we all ate together. After dinner, the kids and I played on the Xbox a little bit before Bud did his piano practice and I got Buster and snack and started on the bedtime routine. Buster proved his reading is improving by reading a non-BOB book (about Cars 2) before I handed him over to M-lady and did snack and bedtime routine with Bud.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Cake Experiment

I was up around 7:00 this morning, and snuck out around 7:30 to go to a bike race. I didn't do very well, and it was pretty cold, but it was good to spend a little time turning the pedals.

The kids and M-lady apparently had a very productive morning. They had pancakes for breakfast (except Bud, who's decided that he doesn't like pancakes). Nanny J arrived a little later in the morning, and in exchange for some computer help from M-lady, helped out around the house a bit. The were apparently super good while M-lady and Nanny J were occupied. Bud also got a chunk of work done on his book report (he's reporting on The Hobbit) and his piano practice.

I got home around 1:00, and Buster excitedly greeted me. After getting cleaned up, I had a snack with the kids, and then played on the Xbox with them for a bit while M-lady rested. Then I took my turn resting, and only had the kids jump on me occasionally. As I was getting up, the kids petitioned to play with iPads, which I allowed for about 20 minutes.

M-lady and I put together a solid dinner, and the kids ate well. After dinner, I tried a new recipe I came across to make chocolate cake in a coffee mug in the microwave. The result wasn't too bad, and we all enjoyed the chocolate cake for a snack.

After snacking, I played a little more Xbox with Buster before getting him ready for bed. He managed to go without any fever today, so seems to be in good shape for school tomorrow. We read stories and watched a few minutes of video before turning the light out around 8:30.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Chewing Sideways

The kids were up around 8:00ish this morning, but were fantastic enough to let us sleep in until about 10:00. They have been playing really well together recently.

I got up and made roll-up pancakes, and we all had a late breakfast. After getting dressed, I took Buster to the grocery store while M-lady and Bud headed out to the library. We all got home around noon, but put off lunch for a bit since we'd had a late breakfast.

Bud has a loose tooth, and made it a bit looser today trying to eat an apple. After that, he spent the rest of the day gnawing on his food with just the right side of his mouth.

We played a little Rock Band, had a quick lunch, and got Buster a Lego set he earned with points. This was the first set he earned with points rather than just the star system he'd used previously, so he was pretty excited. It was also his first Lord of the Rings set, so he was thrilled about that. We played some Lego Lord of the Rings on the Xbox together in the afternoon. In the late afternoon, Buster snoozed with me for about half an hour.

We headed out to the mall when Buster and I woke, where M-lady ran a quick errand and we all had dinner. We would have spent longer, but I noticed Buster's cheeks were flushed and he felt a little warm. We headed home and found that sure enough, he was running a bit of a fever. I gave him some ibuprofen and we had a very mellow evening.

Buster and I played on the iPad while Bud worked on piano and a book report. I showered Buster, and M-lady got him ready for bed. I got him a snack, then turned him over to M-lady while I got a snack with Bud and got him ready for bed. Bud and I had a good time watching a few trailers and a little bit of the Hobbit cartoon before turning out the light around 9:00.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Introducing One Song at a Time

We had a fairly usual morning, with both kids rising at about 7:30. I got them going and fed them breakfast, and M-lady took Buster to school while I took Bud.

The kids had a good afternoon. M-lady arrived home in time to take Bud to piano, and I arrived home around 5:30. Buster was happy to see me, but let me put my stuff down. M-lady and Bud got home a few minutes later, and we said goodbye to Nanny J. I got started on prepping dinner, and gathered everyone for movie night.

There was some pushback from the kids on the suggestion to watch The Little Mermaid, so we just watched two songs from that movie (Under the Sea and Les Poissons). The kids really liked the songs, and we may be able to watch the whole movie sometime in the future. After those two pieces, we switched to watching episodes of the Muppet Show, which everyone enjoyed.

We wrapped up and I got a snack for the kids, then got Buster ready for bed. We read some stories and watched some vids together before turning out the light a bit after 8:30. M-lady put Bud to bed, which also went smoothly.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Delaying Dinner

M-lady had another early meeting, and headed out a bit before 7:30. Buster wandered in a few minutes later, and we snuggled for a couple minutes before getting up and starting the morning routine. The kids were good about getting ready, and we headed out on time.

The kids had a good day, and did TKD in the afternoon. I got home around 5:30, and M-lady was already home. We said goodbye to Nanny J around 5:45, and got Bud started on his homework around 6:15. After he wrapped up his homework, both kids deferred dinner and played together while M-lady and I ate. They seemed to be having a really good time.

Buster ate while Bud was working on his piano, and then I helped him get ready for bed. Bud ate after piano, and finished up and started getting ready for bed after 8:00. Bud and I hung out together a bit before turning out the light around 9:00.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Dashing Out

M-lady had an early meeting, and headed out around the time the rest of us were getting out of bed. Bud was already awake and reading, and I prompted him to get dressed. Buster was out cold, and took a little convincing to get going. Both kids had a good breakfast, and I suggested they take their rain jackets due to impending inclement weather. Both kids were at school on time.

They seem to have had a good day. Bud did his homework in the afternoon, as we asked, and they went to the later TKD class, where I met them. They did well in class, which wrapped up around 5:30. I took the kids home while Nanny J continued on to her home.

When we got home, I headed out again for a work social event, while M-lady took over getting the kids cleaned up and having dinner. They accomplished quite a bit during the evening, and Bud was wrapping up his piano practice when I got back home around 8:15. I supervised snack time for the kids, and then read a bit with Buster before we turned out the light a little late, around 8:40. He was asleep pretty quickly.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

VIP Week

M-lady had an early call this morning, but the rest of us were just a little slow getting up this morning. I rolled the kids out of bed, and we headed downstairs for breakfast about 10 minutes later than we usually do. I hurried the kids through breakfast, and M-lady took them to school. The drop offs went fine, and the kids weren't appreciably late.

The kids had a good day. Bud is the 'VIP' in his class this week, which means he gets to be at the front of the line, and there's a poster about him up in class, and gets to do sharing each day. Today he shared the magic wand we made together a few months back.

After school, the kids had TKD, and apparently did well. I got home around 5:30, and Buster immediately latched on to my leg. We said goodbye to Nanny J, and M-lady arrived home a few minutes later.

I got Bud going on homework, and then got some dinner for myself and Buster. Bud postponed dinner. After we'd eaten, Buster and I worked on putting one of his Lego sets, the Batcave, back together. M-lady got Bud some dinner and worked on piano with him while Buster and I did that.

I got Buster a snack and got him ready for bed, and he read one of the BOB books to me. His reading is getting really good. M-lady read to Buster after that, and I got Bud a snack before we worked on a couple of simple Scratch programs. We turned the lights out around 9:00.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Enjoying The Day Off

We all rolled out of bed this morning around 8:30, and headed downstairs to catch some of the inauguration. The kids sat and watched patiently: I think they liked the songs between the speeches. After the president's address, I got started on making some breakfast.

Everyone ate well, and after breakfast we lounged around for a bit. Aunt O and Cousin C arrived around 11:00, and the kids had a great time playing together. After they ran around for a bit, I set up the Xbox for them for a little while. We all had lunch together, and then the kids played outside for a bit while Aunt O and M-lady watched them and I busied myself on the roof picking oranges.

Aunt O and Cousin C took off after having a snack, and I spent some time with Bud. I set up one of my old laptops for him, and put Scratch, a method for learning programming, on it. We spent some time playing with that together, and he had a good time inventing his own projects for much of the afternoon.

M-lady did a quick run out to Target, and I started cooking dinner a little while after her return. The kids ate well, and after dinner Buster and I played a little bit of Rock Band before snack time. The kids did a pretty standard snack and bedtime routine. I read stories with Buster until we turned the light out around 8:30. He woke coughing about an hour later, but went back to sleep quickly when I went to check on him.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Reading Aloud

I woke a bit earlier this morning, around 7:30, and got myself ready for a bike race. I headed out a few minutes after 8:00, just as Buster had wandered out. I steered him towards our bed so he could snuggle with M-lady for a bit.

The kids apparently had a good morning, and M-lady made pancakes for breakfast. I got home shortly before noon as Bud was finishing up his piano practice. I put lunch together for myself and Bud (Buster deferred), and then took a shower. After I had cleaned myself up, Buster requested his lunch, so I got that together for him.

After we'd all eaten, I played Lego games on the Xbox with Buster and then Bud for a bit. Later in the afternoon, M-lady and the kids let me take a nap for a couple hours, which was really nice. M-lady got dinner together, and I got up at 6:00 and joined them.

We caught bits and pieces of the football games during the day. The kids seemed reasonably pleased that the 49er's won their game, but they generally weren't interested in the games.

I bathed the kids, and they requested snack time a bit earlier than usual. While the kids were snacking, Bud asked me about the difference between viruses and bacteria, so I jotted the basics on the whiteboard for him. He seemed to get the gist. We also chatted a bit about their allowance schedule.

After snack, Buster headed upstairs to clean his room (to earn points towards his allowance). M-lady did the bedtime routine with him, while I read with Bud. We read a chunk of The Lord of the Rings aloud, which was a lot of fun. I hope Bud lets me read more of it to him going forward.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Splinter Removal

The kids were up around 8:00, and jumped in bed with us for a while. M-lady got up and got them some breakfast, and then came back to bed. I dragged myself up a bit later and got a snack for the kids around 11:00.

I let the kids watch an episode of Sesame Street and then we got lunch together a bit after 1:00. After eating, the kids and I spent a good chunk of the afternoon playing games on the Xbox. We eventually turned the TV off, and headed outside to play with the remainder of the afternoon. The kids ran around a bit while I worked in the garage, and did a good job of playing together and staying entertained.

We headed in when it started getting dark, and I ran out to pick up dinner with Bud a short time later. We all enjoyed a sushi dinner together.

After dinner, the kids spent a little time watching me play a new Xbox game/trainer I picked up today (Rocksmith) before snacktime. The kids got lightsaber popsicles for snack again, which M-lady thought was pretty cool.

I read stories with Buster at bedtime, then tucked him in and headed off to do the grocery shopping. When I got back, he was standing at the top of the stairs, and proudly showed me a band-aid. Apparently he had a splinter in his thumb which had been keeping him up. I took a look at it and was able to get it out quickly, with minimal fuss. Buster was pleased as we put on a new band-aid, and I tucked him in for the night a little after 9:30.

Friday, January 18, 2013

A Whole Movie

The kids woke around the same time M-lady and I did, around 7:30. Buster wandered into the room to snuggle with M-lady, and I rolled Bud out of bed. It was a slightly more relaxed morning schedule, since Buster didn't have school and I just need to transport one child. I rolled out with Bud around 8:15, and M-lady stayed home with Buster until Nanny J arrived.

M-lady actually stayed home most of the day, nursing a cold. She got the opportunity to rest a couple of times, which was good. She took Bud to his piano practice around 5:00, and I got home with dinner around 5:30. She and Bud arrived home a few minutes later, and we said goodbye to Nanny J.

The kids had agreed to watch Cars 2 for the movie tonight. Buster has a Tag book about the movie which he's been reading, so he knew the general story. We all watched the whole film together over dinner, which went really well. M-lady and I are plotting getting some other movie stories into Buster's hands so we can watch other movies on movie night.

The snack and bedtime routine was pretty straightforward, although started a little late due to the movie run. M-lady tucked Buster in while I hung out with Bud. Both kids fell asleep pretty quickly.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Big Torch

The morning routine was pretty usual, and the kids were good about getting up, getting dressed, and having breakfast. We got out of the house at a good time, and I was able to drop both kids off at school without incident.

M-lady returned from her business trip, and got home a bit before 2:00. Buster was very happy to see her, and they spent some time snuggling in the afternoon. M-lady brought little Statue of Liberty Lego sets for the kids, which Buster embellished with a piece of flame Lego from his Batman collection for the torch. He was anxious to show it to me when I got home.

M-lady handled the kids for most of the evening, as I was out a little late. They were good for dinner, and she had Bud do his homework and piano. He'd just finished up when I arrived home.

I got a snack for the kids, and got them started on the bedtime routine. Babysitter G arrived a few minutes before lights out, and M-lady and I headed out to catch a stand-up comic up in the city. The kids were generally good (although Bud tried to scam a few extra minutes), and were sleeping soundly when we got home.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Fraction Talk

We had a usual morning, and got out of the house at just about the right time. The weather was pretty chilly again, with a frost during the night which took a minute to get off the windshield. It was again mid-thirties on the way to school.

After dropping off the kids, I headed back home, since Nanny J had an appointment during the morning and would possibly be late picking up Buster. I almost missed picking him up, and had to dash out the door when I noticed the time, but only arrived about 2 minutes late. He was all set to go, and happy to see me.

Nanny J was already at our house when we got home, and I turned Buster over to her and headed off to work. I got home around 5:30, dropped my things, and said goodbye to Nanny J after she'd gotten a snack for the kids.

The kids and I played for a few minutes, and then I got Bud going on homework. I got some dinner together as he was finishing up, and we all ate together. While we were eating, Bud mentioned that he was starting to learn fractions in school, and asked me about them. We'd already talked about them a little bit, but I gave him a short summary of what they were and how they worked as we wrapped up dinner.

After dinner Bud did his piano practice while I played a little Xbox with Buster, and then Bud joined us and I played a little with him before snack time. The kids had quick snacks, and we did a standard bedtime routine. M-lady called as I was reading to Buster, and we had a quick chat, with all of us being excited that she's coming home tomorrow.

Thoughts to Grandma W for a quick recovery!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A More Comfortable Schedule

The morning routine went well this morning, and we got out the door a few minutes earlier than yesterday. The kids were at school on time. Buster elected to wear his heavier coat this morning, as it continues to be pretty cold (for here): hovering around 35 as we head to school.

The kids did TKD today, and apparently had a pretty good time. I got home around 5:30, and dropped my things before saying goodbye to Nanny J. I got Bud rolling on his homework (despite a fair amount of whining) after Nanny J left.

Bud didn't really have that much homework, and was done fairly quickly. I got a solid meal together for the boys after that, and they ate pretty well. After dinner, Buster and I played a little bit of Xbox while Bud did his piano practice. Bud joined us a short time later, and I had to drop out for a few moments to attend to a work email. When I came back, Bud and I played a little of our game before snack time.

The kids opted to have the rainbow Jell-O cups we'd taken home from the party over the weekend, and made short work of them. They had some fruit as well, and then got started on the bedtime routine. M-lady called while we were getting ready for bed, and the kids were happy to yell a hello/goodnight to her. Buster and I read stories and played a little on the iPad while Bud took a shower. I sat with Bud for a bit before turning out the light, and both kids went to sleep pretty quickly.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Ice Saber Style

The kids were pretty good about getting up this morning when I rolled them out a little after 7:30. Bud got himself dressed while I roused Buster, and even Buster put more effort into getting himself dressed than he usually does. They headed down for breakfast before 8:00, but were a little long at breakfast. Both drop offs went fine, though, and both kids made it to school on time.

It was another fairly chilly day, and I think the kids were mostly inside after school. I got home a bit around 5:30, and we said goodbye to Nanny J at about 5:45. We played a little bit of Xbox together, had some dinner, and then got Bud going on homework and piano.

For snack we tried out my new lightsaber popsicles. I had used lemonade, figuring the colored LEDs would work on the mostly colorless ice that way, and they did turn out pretty well. The kids enjoyed the popsicles despite the cold weather, although I think the lightsaber pops will do best outside in the future: they're a little large to consume without dripping a bit.

Bedtime was straightforward, and I read stories with each child before tucking them in at their respective times.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Taking It Easy

M-lady had an early flight to catch this morning, and rolled out around 4:00. Buster crawled into bed with me about 8:00, which was earlier than I expected him, and we snoozed together until about 8:45. At that point, I got up and made roll-up pancakes for the kids for breakfast.

We spent a lazy day together. We played some Xbox before lunch, caught a little of football games during the day, and played outside a bit. I did some orange picking from the roof, and the kids had fun batting at the small or bad oranges I pitched down to the lawn.

The kids beat on each other a bit while I worked on photos and computer stuff for a while, and then we packed up and headed out for a quick, fairly early dinner. When we got home, I got both boys showered, and Bud did his piano practice. I got started on working out a point system for Buster, but we'll need to consult with M-lady to finalized. Snack was fairly quick, and we all watched a few minutes of TV before getting started on bedtime.

M-lady called while Buster and I were reading a story, and the kids were happy to yell a goodnight to her. Buster was pretty tired after the late night previous, and fell asleep almost as soon as the light went out. Bud was a little more resilient, and we chatted for a bit until I left him a little after 9:00.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Party Night

M-lady let me sleep in this morning, which was great, even though she had a really long list of things to get done before the party in the evening and her trip the next morning. The kids were good about helping out getting things done, and by the time I had joined around 11:00, they'd already crossed a bunch of things off the list.

I had some lunch and got the kids some grub, and then got busy on some of my tasks. The kids had a video chat with Agu to say Happy Birthday, and we had a nice video chat with Grandma W during which Bud interviewed her for a homework assignment. Buster spent most the call crawling onto my head.

I did a grocery store run with Buster while Bud ran some errands with M-lady, and I got a bag of oranges picked. We were preparing for a party in the evening with a 50's theme, so M-lady and I spent some time making a 50's hors d'oeuvre: bacon-wrapped Spam. We managed to get that together, and then start getting into appropriate clothing.

The Family, 50's style
For the first time, the kids dressed up with us. Bud and I did light-colored sport coats with bow ties, and M-lady and Buster had letterman sweaters. Bud was excited to dress up, and Buster was tolerant.

We ended up getting out of the house about 30 minutes later than we would have liked, but we managed to get just about everything done that we needed to. The party was a blast, although Buster had a few too many Shirley Temples. Both kids had a great time, though, and had lots of fun playing with Friends Av and An, particularly later in the evening after having some time to warm up. They were still going strong when we left, around 10:30.

Buster fell asleep on the way home, and we got the kids tucked in bed immediately on arrival. Bud was still a bit jazzed, but fell asleep pretty quickly once we turned the lights out, a bit after 11:00.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Dragging Back In

I didn't make it home in the morning, either, and stayed at work through the early afternoon. M-lady apparently didn't have any trouble in the morning with the kids, and they were good about doing the routine and getting ready on time.

I got home around 2:00, and Buster was excited to see me. I let him know that I was going to take a shower and a nap, and he was understanding, and left me alone for the afternoon, which was nice. I woke again around 6:00, and joined the family for movie night.

We opted to watch the Les Mis 25th anniversary concert DVD, and watched a good portion of it before snack and bedtime rolled around. Both kids seemed reasonably interested, and it was a nice change from Looney Tunes.

I helped put Buster to bed, and got to sleep reasonably early myself in an effort to catch up.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Out For The Night

The morning with the kids was fairly standard, although I explained to them that I probably wouldn't be home in the evening, and possibly not the following morning, as well. My work was having an all-night coding party, with prizes for the best innovations the next day. The kids were understanding, and I took Buster to school while M-lady took Bud, and then volunteered in his class for a while.

I didn't make it home in the evening, but I did call before bedtime. They'd had a pretty good evening, and said hello and goodnight to me before getting back to snacking. Thanks much to M-lady for watching the kids for an evening and a morning!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

My Shortened Evening

I rolled Bud out of bed around 7:40, and it was a real effort getting him going. M-lady snuggled with Buster for a bit before helping him get dressed. I got both kids downstairs for breakfast around 8:00, and they were both in much better moods after having eaten. I took Bud to school and M-lady took Buster.

The kids seem to have had a good day. Buster did TKD, but Bud rested instead. However, when I got home around 5:30, Bud had his TKD pants on and was practicing in front of the mirror in our room. M-lady arrived home around 5:45, and we all snuggled a bit after saying goodbye to Nanny J.

I played Lego Batman with Buster for a bit while Bud did his homework and then headed out to have dinner with old work friends around 7:00. M-lady got dinner for the kids, and everyone ate reasonably well. Bud stretched out his meal a little too long, though.

After getting ready for bed, Bud did a thorough piano practice, finishing up a few minutes before 9:00. He was in bed shortly after that, and both kids were asleep when I got home about an hour later.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Desired TV Show

Buster was a little sluggish this morning, and Bud was still sick enough that we decided to keep him home another day. I got Buster going, and got him some breakfast, and tried to get some medicine into Bud. Bud had some trouble with it, so we were cleaning up a bit before I took Buster to school.

Buster's drop off went fine, and I headed off to work. I got home around 5:30 and was set upon by the kids upon my arrival. They swarmed me a bit as I got settled in, and we said goodbye to Nanny J. After a few minutes of wrestling, I popped the kids down in front of the TV.

They really wanted to see Sesame Street, so I popped on a recorded copy for a bit. At about 6:45 we stopped to get started on dinner, and M-lady arrived a short time later.

The kids ate pretty well, and Bud did his homework after dinner. I told Buster to get into PJs if he wanted to play a game on the Xbox, but he dawdled a bit and missed his chance. We had snack when Bud wrapped up his homework, and I did the bedtime routine with Bud while M-lady handled Buster.

Monday, January 07, 2013

Not Quite Ready To Go Back

Bud has caught Buster's cold, and had just enough of a fever this morning that M-lady and I decided to keep him home from school. We made the decision after going through the standard morning routine, so he was all dressed and ready to go. I told him he could stay home, and he got back into PJs and crawled into bed. He apparently spent most of the day reading.

M-lady took Buster to school while I hung out with Bud for a few minutes before Nanny J arrived. Buster apparently trotted off to class with no compunctions. I left Bud with Nanny J a little before 10:00 and picked up his school and homework on my way to the office.

I got home around 5:30, and M-lady had just arrived. After dropping my stuff and playing with Buster for a bit, I crashed out and napped rather unexpectedly. M-lady got dinner for the kids, and I joined them as they were wrapping up, around 7:00. I ate dinner as Bud worked on his homework and Buster colored a page from the printer.

I got Bud into the bathtub, and then played a few minutes of Lego Batman with Buster before snack time. We started snack a little late, so I got Buster into bed about 10 minutes before lights out. We played on the iPad for a bit, and turned the lights out a few minutes later than usual. Buster was asleep in about 10 minutes.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Wrapping Up the Vacation

M-lady got up with the kids this morning and got them some breakfast. Bud was up bright and early, and Buster only needed minimal prodding to get out of bed and have some breakfast around the usual school wake-up time. M-lady then came back to bed, and we slept in a bit.

Buster got himself dressed, and I rolled out of bed and got going around 10:00. I convinced Bud to get dressed, and then spent some time playing with the kids. I played a game of Magic with Bud, and then hung out with Buster a bit and did some coloring. I got lunch together for everyone a bit later, and we got serious about finishing up putting away the holiday decorations in the afternoon.

I got the tree down and out, and Buster helped me vacuum up pine needles for a bit. After cleaning up, we watched a little football and played a little Rock Band before I headed out for grocery shopping with Buster while M-lady and Bud ran out to do some other errands. We met back home around 5:00 and headed out to dinner.

We had fun at the local Red Robin, although they don't have kid's menus for coloring any more. We'll have to plan on bringing our own entertainment for the kids. After dinner, we came home and I spent some time picking up some of the play room so we could excavate the fireplace. I got a fire going, and after playing more Rock Band for a bit, we roasted marshmallows for a treat at snack time.

I showered the boys after snack, and then spent time hanging out with Bud until bed. He's been a little under the weather, and was fairly quiet today, but seems generally OK for school tomorrow.

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Getting Stuff Done

We slept in a bit this morning, and didn't really get moving until about 10:00. I made some French toast for everyone for breakfast/brunch, which got the day going.

The kids played just inside the window while I headed out onto the roof to fix the satellite dish. We've been more or less without TV for 3+ weeks now, ever since the first big rainstorm of the season. The new dish fit on the mount of the old dish, and works great, so it wasn't too tough to replace. The kids were good about fetching tools and helping out when I needed it.

After getting the dish repaired and the project remains cleaned up, I tackled breaking down the mountain of cardboard boxes produced by all the on-line shopping we did for the holidays (including a big box for a new satellite dish). Bud was good about helping me get the boxes down to the garage to break them down. Meanwhile, M-lady and Buster started on un-decorating the tree.

After a quick break for lunch, I got the house holiday lights taken down while M-lady took the kids to the library. It was good I got them down when I did, as rain started coming down while they were at the library.

When they got home, we continued with the packing up of the holiday ornaments. We all took turns removing items from the tree, and M-lady packed the decoration boxes. Bud and I pulled the lights off the tree, and worked on getting them wrapped up tidily.

After getting the tree mostly taken down, we took a little break before talking about dinner options. We discussed heading out for dinner, but the kids were reluctant to go, so we ate at home instead.

After a pleasant dinner, Buster and I played Xbox while Bud played on the iPad for a bit. Around 7:30, Babysitter G arrived, and we got Buster into PJs. M-lady and I took off a short time later to go see a movie. The kids apparently had a good time with Babysitter G, and were asleep when we got back.

Friday, January 04, 2013


Buster started coughing around 7:00am, which meant I didn't have to get up in the middle of the night to check on him. He came in to hang out with us instead. We got up around 8:30, started getting ready, and Nanny J arrived at 8:45. I headed off for work a short time later.

The kids got haircuts during the day, and were excited to let me know what flavors of lollipop they got when they finished. They looked very tidy. Apparently the movie 'Brave' was showing at the kids barber shop they went to, and the kids watched a bit of it, but they weren't interested in watching it for movie night.

I arrived home around 5:45, and we said goodbye to Nanny J. A couple of heavy packages had arrived, and I muscled them in the door. One was a new laser printer, a birthday gift for M-lady, but Bud was sure it was a 3D printer. I guess he's been reading over my shoulder a bit recently.

Buster bumped his head, as we were getting dinner ready, and had a bit of a welt. We got Mr. Bump onto his head, and joked around a bit to get him back in a good mood. The bump was soon forgotten, and we got started on movie night, watching Bugs Bunny cartoons at the kids request.

After watching cartoons for a while and finishing up dinner, Bud did a piano practice while Buster had a snack. The bedtime routine followed closely. I played Plants vs. Zombies on the iPad with Buster until it was time to turn out the light.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Getting Closer to Normal Schedule

M-lady headed off early for work today, before the rest of us were up. I rolled out of bed around 8:15, and found Bud reading in his bed and Buster still snoozing (he was up for an hour during the night coughing). Buster woke while I was getting dressed, and came and checked on me before looking for M-lady. He hung out with me when I explained M-lady had already left.

The kids were pretty mellow, playing with the Leapster until Nanny J arrived at 8:45. They got started on breakfast, and I headed out for work. It was nice to see Nanny J again.

The kids didn't go to school, but they did have TKD in the afternoon. They arrived home around the same time I did, and Buster had a bath while I got settled. M-lady arrived a short time later, and said goodbye to Nanny J while I let the kids play with iPads for a bit.

I spent a chunk of the evening gaming with my Friend R (Uncle R to the kids), and the kids had a good time playing with M-lady. They had some dinner, and Bud did a solid piano practice. I wrapped up the game around bedtime, just after they'd finished their snacks.

I got Buster into PJs and brushed his teeth, then played Plants vs. Zombies for a bit with Bud for a bit before we turned out the light.

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Hobbit Meal

We had a fairly mellow morning, and I was out of bed around 8:30ish and off to work shortly. M-lady got up with the kids and took care of them during the day.

They apparently had a very productive morning, and got all their vacation homework done. They each had minor projects to do, and M-lady supervised getting things together. Bud also did his piano practice, so they had fewer obligations by lunchtime.

They had a good lunch together, and swung by my office to visit in the afternoon before heading off to TKD. The kids were wearing their TKD uniforms, and got a lot of looks from folks as we did a brief tour of the office. The CEO came over to chat with them as well, and traded a few moves with Bud.

After the kids had Rice Krispy treats from the snack shelves at the office, and Buster had a chance to head down the slide, M-lady took them off to TKD. I got home a few minutes after they did, and we packed up a few minutes later to head out to dinner.

We headed to Denny's for dinner, to try out their 'Hobbit' menu. Bud and M-lady took advantage of the new choices, having "seedcake" (poppyseed) French toast, Shire sausage, and pumpkin pancakes. Buster and I stuck with traditional Grand Slam fair. The promotion seems to be working, though, as we overheard kids next to us asking to see the movie now.

We headed home and played Xbox for a short time before snack and bed time. Buster's been fighting against a cold the past couple of days, and started to get a little drippy around bedtime. He fell asleep pretty quickly after reading a few Batman books and turning the lights out.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

New Year's Activities

The kids were up at the usual time, and I was up briefly with Buster to help him get dressed. M-lady got up to get the kids some breakfast a short time later, and then both she and I fell back to sleep for a bit. The kids jumped on the bed occasionally, but were generally good about entertaining themselves until we got up.

I got started on my laundry, and helped Buster with his Lego set for a bit before lunchtime. Bud had a second breakfast, and a snack, and then an early lunch as he continues on through a growth spurt.

We loaded up into two cars as 1:00 approached and headed over to Friend J's annual New Year's Day soup party. We were there fairly early, but arrived a few minutes after Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C. Cousin C was happy to see Buster, and the two entertained each other for a while as the rest of us snacked and chatted.

I headed out early with the kids and Uncle C and Cousin C, and we headed back to their place to watch the Rose Bowl. The kids ran around at very high energy levels for quite some time while the game was on. Eventually they wound down a bit, and Aunt O and M-lady arrived, adn the kids got absorbed into iPads. We had dinner a few minutes after the game wrapped up (Go Stanford!), and then around 6:30 wrapped up, said our goodbyes, and headed home.

I got Buster into the shower, and then we did a little more Lego until snack time. Buster had a light snack and headed for bed with M-lady, and I watched a couple videos with Bud on the iPad before turning out the light.