Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter

The kids were up and in our bed around 7:00, and after they'd wrestled for a bit I kicked them out. They were in and out all morning. I got up briefly around 8:00 to get them some breakfast: Bud ate, but Buster declined. M-lady got Buster some food around 9:00, and I rolled out of bed a short time later. We all got ready to go, and were headed over to Aunt O and Uncle C's place before 10:00.

The kids were playing with each other immediately on arrival, and the adults spent a few minutes settling in before spending some time hiding plastic Easter eggs. We got the kids together after we'd hidden the eggs, and they spent about 15 minutes running around finding eggs. I had to pull Bud out of the action a couple of time so the other kids could catch up, but he wasn't too upset about it, and offered the younger kids some of the eggs he had found.

We had a nice brunch after the egg hunt, and the kids played for the early afternoon. We headed out a bit after 1:00, just as Buster was getting a little grumpy. He perked up by the time we got home.

M-lady and I took turns making trips to Goodwill, and I managed to unload our big media center cabinets (finally!). Bud helped me get them in the car. The minivan could only hold one at a time, though, so I had to make two trips. Ama and Agu arrived around the time I was getting back, and the kids spent some time playing happily with them.

Cousin C was so bummed when we left in the early afternoon that Aunt O brought him over to play in the later afternoon. He and Buster played together for a while, and then played some Xbox while Bud and I worked on one of his Lego sets together. Aunt O and Cousin C took their leave a little before dinner time, and I started getting dinner ready.

Everybody ate pretty well, and I ran out to try to get an errand done after dinner. I wasn't successful (the store closed early), and managed to get home around 7:00. Bud and Buster were happily singing Les Mis songs with Agu for a while before snack time.

The kids each had a little more Easter candy for snack, and then did the bedtime routine. I sat with Bud and watched some Les Mis clips for a bit, and we turned out the light around 9:00 after a very full day.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Family Occasion

The kids jumped in bed with us around 7:00, and I kicked them out of bed a little while later, as they were being pretty rambunctious. Around 8:00 we got up, and I got started on getting the kids ready to go while M-lady headed out to ballet class. The kids did a fairly standard morning routine, and we headed out around 8:45 to go to Bud's makeup piano lesson.

Buster got to have a mini-lesson at the beginning, and started learning his Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star variations. He did a pretty good job. Bud did well in his lesson, and afterward the kids and I opted to come straight home.

I snoozed for a bit, and the kids played together for the remainder of the morning. M-lady arrived home just before noon, as I was starting to get some lunch for myself and the kids. After we ate, I headed out to get some groceries while the kids stayed home with M-lady.

I got back expecting that they would have already left for the party, but they were still at home. We unloaded the groceries, packed up, and headed off to Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C's place for Cousin C's birthday party. Ama and Agu were there as well, and everyone had fun at the party. Buster and Cousin C played together quite a bit, and Bud had a good time, too. There were several other kids at the party, mostly Buster/Cousin C's age, but Bud was good playing with them as well.

We hung out for a bit after the end of the party, and then bolted as dinner time approached. The four of us decided to go out to dinner, and had a solid meal at Red Robin. Buster didn't eat too much, and the kids were a little squirmy, but generally well behaved. It was about 6:30 when we got home.

The kids ran around a bit before I got Buster into the shower around 7:00, and then the kids and I watched another episode of Legends of Chima. Unfortunately, it doesn't look to be shaping up as well as Ninjago, but the kids are enjoying it so far. We had a quick snack, and I watched some Slo Mo Guys videos with Buster before we turned out the light around 8:30.

Happy Birthday, Cousin C!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Finally Available

The morning routine was fairly standard. Buster crawled in bed with us around 7:00, and we rolled out of bed around 7:30. Both kids were pretty good about getting ready for school, and I took Buster to school while M-lady took Bud (to his temporary classroom, since his usual room was apparently flooded yesterday).

The kids seem to have had a good day. M-lady got home in time to take Bud to his piano lesson. I arrived home with a pizza at right around 5:45, as M-lady and the kids were saying goodbye to Nanny J. After settling in for a few minutes, we set up in front of the TV for movie night, watching the Les Mis 25th Anniversary Concert. Both the kids wanted to sing along.

After watching a bit of that, I turned on the first recorded episode of Legends of Chima, which aired on Wednesday. Buster was really excited. We watched an episode before snack time. The kids had a quick snack, and then were good about getting ready for bed.

Bud and I watched a bunch of YouTube videos from theslomoguys, and laughed a lot. The guy getting hit in the face with a soccer ball was a particular favorite. They're definitely worth a look.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Dashing Out For A Bit

Buster crawled into bed with M-lady and me around 7:00, and we got up around 7:30. Buster was a little slow to get up, but M-lady and I got both kids moving. I helped them through the morning routine, and combed their hair, before M-lady took them to school and I took my car to the shop for routine maintenance. I biked to work from the shop.

Bud apparently had an exciting day at school when a pipe in the classroom sink burst, flooding the room. One of the consequences of the minor disaster was that he wasn't assigned any homework this evening.

I got home around 5:00, and M-lady was home a short time later. We said goodbye to Nanny J, and lounged around for a little bit. I got myself showered and cleaned up while M-lady got some dinner for the kids, and then I headed out to meet with some friends for the evening. M-lady was kind enough to take care of the kids, and they apparently had a really good evening.

Buster ate a huge dinner, and Bud tackled his piano solidly. M-lady says they both went to bed without any problems, and Bud even requested a second snuggle.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Wore Out

M-lady had to leave early this morning, around 7:00. Buster had already crawled into bed with me at that point, so we said goodbye to M-lady together. Buster and I snoozed until about 7:30, and then got up and started the morning. The kids were pretty good about getting going, and we got out the door in time for me to drop them both off at school.

The kids had good day. Bud had a field trip with his class which apparently involved a fair bit of hiking. He was tired in the afternoon, and apparently took a nap before Nanny J took him and Buster to TKD in the late afternoon.

I met the kids and Nanny J at TKD, and watched the end of their lesson. They did a great job, as usual, and looked happy to be back after a two-week hiatus. We said goodbye to Nanny J at the end of class, and I brought the kids home. Traffic kept us out until about 6:15.

When we got home, I got Bud started on homework (he hadn't done it in the afternoon due to his nap), and I got started on making dinner. Bud was wrapping his homework when I got dinner ready, so we took a break to eat together. The kids ate pretty well, and afterward Bud finished up his homework, right around the same time M-lady arrived home.

The kids had a chance to play a little Xbox together before Bud got started on his piano practice with M-lady. I got Buster into the shower around that time, and then got him into PJs. The kids had snack together (a few minutes later than usual), after which Bud took his shower and I played a few games on the iPad with Buster. We turned the light out around 8:30, and Buster promptly fell asleep.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Running Late

M-lady had an early phone call, so I rolled the kids out of bed a little after 7:30. Both kids were a little slow to get going, but eventually made it downstairs to get some breakfast, and were ready to go to school on time. I dropped Buster off this morning, while M-lady took Bud.

The kids seem to have had a good day, and got to do TKD for the first time in a couple weeks (due to illness). M-lady got home to relieve Nanny J, and I arrived home around 6:00. The kids deferred dinner for a while, so I ate around 6:30. Buster joined me at the end, and Bud didn't eat until after 7:00.

Bud had also delayed his homework, so got started on that after eating dinner. Buster played a little Xbox, and snack time came up pretty quickly. After snack, I got Buster ready for bed while Bud did his piano practice with M-lady.

They wrapped up around 8:30, and M-lady came up to snuggle with Buster for a few minutes. Bud took his shower, and we watched just a couple minutes of YouTube videos (about Prince Rupert's Drops filmed breaking in super-slow-mo) before turning out the light around 9:00.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Back To The Usual

M-lady had an early call, and Buster came and jumped in bed with me about 7:00. He got bored, though, and when I got up at 7:30 he was downstairs playing with Lego. I rolled Bud out of bed and got the kids going through the morning routine.

M-lady took Buster to school, and I dropped Bud off. After dropping Bud off, I headed home, hopped on my bike, and rode to work. I got home shortly after 5:30, and found M-lady had arrived a few minutes before me.

I took a shower while M-lady said goodbye to Nanny J, and we got started on making dinner when I got out. Bud did his homework while dinner was cooking, and we all had a nice meal together. After dinner, Bud wrapped up his homework, and the kids and I watched a little bit of TV before Bud got started on his piano practice.

I let Buster play a few minutes of Xbox before snack time. Buster finished up the part of his meal he had deferred, and the kids had their snacks and headed upstairs to get ready for bed. The bedtime routine was pretty straightforward, and I watched a few videos with Buster on the iPad before turning the lights out.

With M-lady back, the kids healthy, and Bud finished with his presentation, it seems like we're back to the usual routine.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Mellow Sunday

The kids jumped in bed with us shortly after 8:00, and at about 9:00 I rolled out of bed to get some breakfast for the them. M-lady was up a short time later, and headed out to her ballet class. After having breakfast, I set the kids up to watch an episode of Sesame Street while I got some work done on the computer.

M-lady returned around noon, and we all had some lunch. After lunch I packed up and headed out for a bike ride, swinging by Friend D's place to help him with his bike tires. M-lady spent time with the kids, and Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C apparently came by for a visit. They were just leaving as I got home, around 4:30.

I took my shower, and we headed to the mall for dinner. After eating, we hit the Lego store, where the kids each picked up a small set with their allowance. After walking around a bit more, we met up with Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C again, and had some frozen yogurt for dessert. We stayed and chatted until the mall closed at about 7:00.

I got Buster bathed when we got home, and Bud took his shower. They spent some time playing with their new Lego sets before snack time, and bedtime followed quickly after that. I watched some shows with Bud on the iPad before we turned out the light at about 9:00.

Saturday, March 23, 2013


M-lady got up to get the kids some breakfast this morning, letting me sleep in a bit. M-lady came back to bed, and I rolled out around 9:00, and played with Buster for a bit. I encouraged Bud to get dressed, got him his second breakfast shortly after 9:00, and sent M-lady and Bud off for a 10:00am piano lesson.

While they were out, I got Buster bathed (he'd missed the last couple days), and then hung out with him until M-lady and Bud returned. When they got back, Buster and I headed out to the grocery store, and had a good time restocking our larder. Buster helped me unload the car when we got home.

After having lunch with the kids, I played some Xbox with Buster. After finishing up a level with him, Bud and I headed out together to the hardware store. We picked up a couple of small items, including some weed killer spray. When we got back, I sprayed some dandelions in the front yard, while the kids played outside for a bit. Bud and I spent some time chatting about Starcraft, in which he's suddenly taken an interest.

After heading back inside, I set Bud up to play the first couple of levels of Starcraft. He did OK, although he still needs a little practice differentiating between left and right mouse clicks.

After he wrapped up, I ran out to the bike store briefly. The kids were playing with matchbox cars when I returned. After getting home, I got started on dinner, and we all ate together a bit before 6:00. After dinner, the whole family sat down to play a game together: Junior Catan, which Bud had received for his birthday. Buster played on a team with M-lady first, and then on his own in a head-to-head match with Bud. Buster got all the rolls in the second game, and won handily.

After the game, we had snack time, and the kids got ready for bed. I watched a bit of Sesame Street with Buster before we turned out the light.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Successful Speech

Buster was headed back to school, so we did a fairly standard morning routine, although we ran a little late. I took Bud to school, and M-lady took Buster. We got the kids to class on time, though it took a little prodding.

Bud had his big presentation today, so M-lady and I arrived at his class at about 9:00. He was about 30 seconds into the speech when the fire alarm went off. It was a fire drill, so we all filed out to the playground. After taking a tally of the kids, we all headed back in to class, and Bud started over. He wasn't flustered at all, and gave a very solid presentation.

I headed to work after that, and M-lady headed home, where she watched the kids while Nanny J is gone. They had a good day, and headed out to get the car washed after Bud got out of school. It's always a popular place for the kids, since there's free popcorn and lemonade.

I arrived home about 5:30, and the kids and M-lady arrived about 15 minutes later, returning from Bud's piano lesson. After settling in, we got dinner started and sat down in front of the TV. We put on Disney's Alice in Wonderland, which turned out to be a much weirder movie than I remember, with the trial of Alice towards the end being borderline Kafka-esque.

Bud liked the movie well enough, but Buster wandered out towards the end. After the movie, I found him in his room, pretty upset. I don't think it was the movie as much as the fact that he really hadn't eaten enough during the day. He never really pulled out of his funk, and fell asleep a bit after 8:00, although both M-lady and I tried to get him to eat something.

Bud did a standard bedtime routine, and he and I watched the end of Treasure Planet before turning the light out. Bud liked that one too, and it had a story he could get his mind around. We chatted about it for a few minutes before he went to sleep.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Christmas In March

M-lady had to head out early again, so I did the morning routine with the kids. Buster was staying home from school again, although he didn't cough much during the night and didn't run a fever today. He opted to defer breakfast until after we dropped Bud off at school, though.

After eating breakfast, Buster watched an episode of Sesame Street. Nanny J was out today (and will be out tomorrow as well), so I stayed home to watch the kids. Buster did a great job of entertaining himself throughout most of the day as I worked.

We had some lunch together, and afterward he was in and out of the office, letting me know what he was up to while I continued to work. A bit after 2:00 we loaded up and headed over to Bud's school, where we picked him up. The kids snacked when we got home, and then played with each other while I finished up the work day.

Bud has a big presentation at school tomorrow on a family tradition. We selected Christmas as the tradition he could say the most about, and so we've been working on his presentation for the past couple weeks. This evening I baked sugar cookies with the kids help, and after dinner we sat down and decorated them just as we would do for Christmas. M-lady even put Christmas music on. The kids had a good time decorating, and we had enough cookies to distribute at Bud's class.

After getting the cookies decorated, it was just a few minutes to snack time, where the kids each got a cookie. After snack, I got Buster ready for bed and read stories with him while M-lady did piano and a speech run through with Bud. Buster will be heading back to school tomorrow, so we're finally getting out of the sick weeks.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Getting Better

Buster coughed a bit last night, but not enough to really wake himself up. M-lady had to head for work early, so I got up with the boys at about 7:30. Buster was just crawling out of bed when I went to rouse him, and Bud took a little shaking to turn out. Bud had breakfast, and Buster opted to wait since he wasn't going to school. Buster was running a fever, though, so he had a dose of ibuprofen.

Buster and I delivered Bud to school, and then headed back home where he had some breakfast. Then I set him down in front of an episode of Sesame Street, and I sat with him and worked online for a bit. Nanny J arrived as Sesame Street wrapped up, and I headed off to work.

Buster was apparently running a bit of a fever in the early afternoon as well, but otherwise the day went fine. I got home around 5:30, and we said goodbye to Nanny J a few minutes later. Bud got started on his homework, which we wrapped up pretty quickly.

Bud and I started watching the movie Treasure Planet, while Buster wandered in and out. Bud has read Treasure Island, so he knew the general story going in. We watched the first 30 minutes or so before starting on dinner.

The kids ate pretty well, and after dinner Bud got started on his piano. Buster had a few minutes of Xbox before snack time, which went quickly. The kids were good about getting ready for bed, and I read with Buster a bit before watching a few Chima videos and turning out the light.

After Buster was tucked in, Bud and I worked on his speech a bit more. His presentation is coming along nicely, and I think he'll be ready on Friday. We watched a few more minutes of Treasure Planet together before turning out the light at about 9:00. Both kids have slept quietly so far tonight, with only occasional coughing from Buster.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A Step Backwards

Buster coughed a bit during the night, but didn't vomit, so that was good. M-lady had to leave for work early, and I did the morning routine with the kids. They were pretty good after a slow start, and we got both kids to school on time. I headed off to work after dropping them off.

Nanny J called in the early afternoon to let us know that Buster was running a fever. She gave him a dose of ibuprofen, and both kids looked happy when I got home around 5:30. We said goodbye to Nanny J, and I got Bud started on his homework.

Bud was pretty good about doing his homework, and afterward we sat down and watched the rest of the Nova show about Easter Island. Bud really likes Nova now.

We ate dinner, and Bud dragged it out a little, but did his piano practice afterward. There was about 10 minutes of wrestling time before snack time came around. The kids had their snack and got ready for bed.

Buster was running a fever again at bedtime, so I gave him another dose of ibuprofen. M-lady got home while I was reading a store with Buster, and gave him a hug before working on Bud's speech with him, and putting him to bed. So far the kids have been quiet, and I'm hoping for a mostly cough-free night.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Early Crash

Buster was up coughing last night twice again, at about 10:00 pm and again at about 6:00am. The second time he didn't really go back to sleep, and happily bounced into our bed at about 7:00. We got up at 7:30 and started the morning routine.

The kids were good about getting ready, and M-lady took Buster to school while I took Bud. They apparently had good days at school, and were playing together when I got home around 5:30. Buster was showing no ill effects from the previous evening.

Bud was good about doing his homework early, and we went over it together right after Nanny J left at about 5:45. After his homework, the kids and I sat down to watch the rest of the Nova episode we'd started earlier about the Sun. Bud was really into it, but Buster fell asleep leaning against me on the couch. He was pretty much done for the evening.

M-lady got home in time to have dinner with Bud and me, and afterward Bud did his piano practice with her. I tried to get Buster to eat some dinner, but he was too groggy. Eventually I took him upstairs and changed him into PJs, where he woke enough to watch an episode of Oswald with M-lady before going back to sleep. I set up a humidifier in his room, and gave him a dose of honey in the hopes of preventing a cough attack tonight.

Bud and I worked on his speech a little bit more, and I dug up some information about his relatives on my side of the family. He took his shower, had a snack, and we watched a few minutes of another episode of Nova before turning out the light.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy To Have M-lady Back

Buster coughed until he vomited a couple of times last night, the second time coming at about 4:00 in the morning. Fortunately he got the vomit in the bucket the second time. He was up for a bit, but dropped back to sleep after a while.

The kids got up with M-lady, who make pancakes for them. I didn't roll out of bed until about 10:00, when Bud asked me to help him out with his Lego set. He was having trouble with one of the windows for Bag End. The construction was remarkably clever, so I wasn't surprised that he missed a step.

I got myself dressed, and Babysitter G arrived at about 11:00. Bud was happy to show her his Lego set, and Buster hid up in his room a bit. M-lady and I headed out to run some errands and grab some lunch, and returned by about 1:30 or so. The kids had eaten and were happily playing when we got back.

I worked on the computer for a short time, and then headed out for a bike ride. M-lady got a snack with the kids while I was out. When I got back, my bike needed a little bit of work, so I wrenched on that while Buster came outside to play for a little while. We had fun in the front yard for a short time, but I was sweaty and still in my bike clothes, so we headed in before too long.

I got started on making dinner pretty quickly, and while the pasta was baking I watched a few minutes of an episode of National Geographic's Nova with the kids. Both kids ate well at dinner time, and afterward Bud got started on piano while I played on the Xbox for a few minutes with Buster. Bud joined us before too long.

We had special chocolate Easter eggs M-lady brought back from her work trip, which the kids thoroughly enjoyed. After snack, I got Buster ready for bed, and we read a couple of stories before watching an episode of Oswald and turning out the light. Bud and M-lady worked on his speech a little more before doing his bedtime routine as well.

Around 11:00 Buster started coughing again, but I got a dose of cough medicine into him and sat up watching another episode of Oswald. Hopefully that will keep him from vomiting tonight.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

A Full Day

I got up with the kids around 8:00, and hung out with Buster for a little while before we all got dressed. We had some breakfast, and I sunscreened the kids anticipating their morning outing.

At about 9:30 Nanny J and her husband arrived to take the kids out to a local park where a club flies remote controlled airplanes. It was cloudy when they headed out, but the overcast burned off within an hour or so, and they had a good time together. While they were out, I managed to do a grocery run, and had my lunch. The kids got back shortly after 1:00, and reported having a very good time.

We all played a little bit of Xbox together, and I had Bud write up a birthday card for his friend N. I attached the card to a gift for Friend N that I had wrapped, and at about 3:00, we loaded up and headed over to Friend N's house for his birthday party. I dropped Bud off, and Buster and I headed back home again.

We played a little Xbox, and built the Lego set he's been patiently waiting for the weekend to open. At about 5:00, we headed over to pick Bud up, where they were just having some cake. Bud said his goodbyes, and we headed home.

We had some dinner, and the kids ate really well. After dinner, Bud worked on his speech project a little bit, and then did his piano practice. I showered Buster and Bud to his shower, which led us right up to snacktime.

The kids had a quick snack, and we did the bedtime routine. Both kids went to sleep pretty quickly. At about 10:00, Buster started coughing a bit, and I walked into his room just as he vomited on his PJs and sheets. I got him cleaned up and changed, and we watched an episode of Oswald together while his lungs settled down a little. He fell back to sleep quickly when we turned out the light, and I finished cleaning up his stuff.

M-lady arrived home a short time later, after a 30-hour trip. We chatted and caught up a bit. It's great to have her back home, and the kids will be thrilled to see her tomorrow morning.

Friday, March 15, 2013


Both kids slept pretty well through the night aside from a few coughing fits, and both were sound asleep when I got up this morning around 7:30. I roused Buster and got him going on the morning routine, and then got Bud up so he could come with me to drop off Buster. Bud didn't have a fever this morning for the first time this week. Both kids were a little groggy, but we got Buster to school on time without too much trouble.

Nanny J arrived at 9:00, while Bud was having some breakfast, and I headed off to work a few minutes later. The kids seem to have had a good day. I picked up Bud's homework on the way home from work, arriving home around 3:00. Bud and Buster kept themselves entertained and played with Nanny J while I worked for a couple of hours.

The pizza I ordered for dinner arrived as Nanny J was leaving, and the kids and I got set up in front of the TV for movie night. We spent the evening mostly watching Mater's Tall Tales and specials that were on the disc. Snack time came up before too long, and the kids had fun with Lik-um-Aid again. The bedtime routine went pretty smoothly, and both kids were asleep quietly without the coughing fits of the past couple of nights. Bud managed to go all day without a fever, so should be getting back to normal this weekend.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Interesting Doc Visit

Buster was up this morning from about 1:00 to 1:30, coughing and with a bad post-nasal drip. I gave him a does of Dimetapp, and sat up with him for about 30 minutes watching an episode of Oswald with him before he went back to sleep.

I rolled out of bed around 7:20, and rousted Buster so we could have a quick video chat with M-lady. I decided to let Bud sleep, since he was still pretty knocked out. Buster was happy to see M-lady, even though he was a bit groggy. After a quick chat, we got started on the morning routine. Buster was good about getting ready and having some breakfast, and we had plenty of time before we headed out to drop him off. Bud stayed home from school again today, and accompanied me as I dropped off Buster.

Bud and I headed home, and finished up the homework that we should have done the previous night. We then had about an hour where I got a little work done, and he read a book for a bit, before we packed up and headed out for a doctor's appointment. He was really nervous because he didn't want a throat swab (for suspected strep).

We arrived at the doc's office, and waited a bit. He didn't end up needing a swab, but the virus apparently caused enough wheezing in his chest that he did an albuterol nebulizer treatment in the office (to make sure he didn't have pneumonia). The doc also gave him an albuterol inhaler on the off chance that he has some tightness later on. I let the doctor know about my experience/past history with asthma and allergies. Bud's illness seems to be viral, though, so we'll just have to ride it out. He didn't get a throat swab, so overall he was happy.

We headed home, where we met Nanny J and Buster. Bud had lunch with them while I headed off to work. I got home again a bit after 5:00, and we said goodbye to Nanny J after I dropped my stuff. We parked in front of the TV for a bit, where we watched the second half of a Nova episode before getting started on dinner.

The kids ate pretty well, and Bud did piano and homework after dinner. The kids had a little time to play, during which they build guns out of Duplo, before snack time. Snack was quick, and I did a bedtime routine with Buster. He was good about picking up his room before we played a game of Chess together on the iPad. He did really well, but the game took us to lights out time.

I hung out with Bud a bit, and worked on homework with him for a while before bed. We wrapped up his homework and had time to play on iPads for a few minutes before we turned out the lights. The kids have slept well so far, and I hope they last the rest of the night without problems.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Halfway Back

Buster crawled into bed with me around 7:00 this morning, and we got up at about 7:30. Buster was good about getting ready for school, and Bud got himself dressed as well. Bud was running a fever again, so I gave him a dose of ibuprofen. We headed out around 8:15, and I dropped Buster off at his class while Bud waited in the car. When we got home, Bud got back into bed for a bit.

Nanny J arrived at about 9:00, and I headed off for work, taking Bud's completed homework with me. Bud and Nanny J apparently did a shopping trip in the morning, and then picked up Buster from school when he finished up, just before lunchtime.

I exchanged Bud's finished homework for a fresh set at his school on the way home from work, around 3:00. When I got home a few minutes later, I found Bud napping, and Buster playing with Nanny J. Bud napped through most of the afternoon, then attacked his homework when he woke.

We said goodbye to Nanny J at about 5:45, after Buster had his bath. The kids and I watched the end of the movie Cars, and I got some dinner ready. The kids didn't eat really well, but they ate enough.

After dinner, Bud handled his piano practice while Buster played a little bit of Xbox. Bud and I worked on the outline for his speech before snack time, and finished it up: tomorrow he should hopefully be able to do a first pass at his presentation. That took us to snack and bed time.

Both kids were good about getting ready for bed. I watched an episode of Oswald with Buster, and then a bit more of the movie Tron with Bud. Both kids had been coughing continuously through the evening, but neither had any problem going to sleep, and both seem to be sleeping peacefully for now. Hopefully they'll sleep through the night.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Sick Day

The kids slept solidly through the night, which was nice. Since both kids were kept home today, there wasn't any need for them to get up early. I got up before school time and called their schools to let them know that they'd be absent, and found Bud already up and reading. He was running a fever, so I gave him a dose of acetaminophen. Buster slept in until about 8:30 or so. The kids headed downstairs to get themselves some breakfast.

I was up and working around 9:30, and Nanny J arrived at about 10:00. The kids played happily all morning, and Buster really showed no signs of being sick.

I headed out just before noon to run some errands and head to the office. I completely forgot to pick up Bud's homework, so I came home early to do that, as well as drop off his completed homework from yesterday. When I got home in the mid-afternoon, Bud had just woken up from an after-lunch nap.

The kids played with Nanny J for a bit while I worked, and then Bud tackled his homework. We finished that up together, and around 5:30 this kids started playing with iPads. I asked Nanny J to arrive early the next day again, since Bud had been running a minor fever and coughing all day, and I was planning on keeping him home another day.

We said goodbye to Nanny J, and then opened up a package that arrived during the day: a new Lego set Buster had ordered, which we'll keep sealed until the weekend. Buster was really excited, closely examined the box, and kept the box with him for most of the rest of the evening.

We watched a little bit more of Cars until dinner time, and the kids ate pretty well. After dinner, Buster played on the Xbox for a bit while Bud and I worked on his upcoming school presentation. He's supposed to talk for ten minutes (which is really, really long), so we started drafting an outline together of his speech. We got a lot done, but time ran out before we completed the outline.

Bud did a quick but thorough piano practice, and then had a snack. The kids were good about getting ready for bed, and Buster even got himself into PJs. I watched a few vids with Buster before we turned out his light, and then spent a little time with Bud on the iPad before his light went out. Both kids fell asleep pretty quickly.

Shortly before 11:00, Bud woke and vomited. He got his comforter, sleeve, and the floor. I got him changed and cleaned up the carpet, and put him back to bed. Hopefully he'll make it through the rest of the night without incident.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Not Quite The Plan

Bud woke this morning around 6:00, coughing and vomiting. I think whatever used to cause his croup/stridor just causes his throat to constrict a bit. He wasn't having too much trouble breathing, but whenever he started coughing, he would gag and vomit. He was also running a low-grade fever, but wasn't able to hold down any medication. We were up with him until the alarm went off around 7:30.

M-lady and I got Buster ready for school, and I took him while M-lady stayed home with Bud. I came back home after dropping Buster off, and snoozed for a bit before logging into work. Bud had largely recovered, and was feeling better, although ran a bit of a fever off and on during the day.

M-lady headed out shortly after 11:00, gone for a week and a half on business. Bud and I bid her goodbye, and Bud headed back to reading while I got back to work. Nanny J arrived with Buster around noon, and the kids had some lunch. I headed out to pick up Bud's homework shortly after noon, and had some lunch when I got home. Bud was hungry, and apparently ate a huge lunch.

Bud also took a solid nap in the afternoon. I holed up and got some work done, and the kids only bothered me once or twice. They came in around 5:00, and Buster had a bath with Nanny J while Bud hung out with me for a bit. Bud was running a fever again when Nanny J left, so I asked her to come back in the morning rather than in the afternoon.

The kids and I watched some of Cars together before dinner. At dinner time I discovered Buster was running a fever as well, so he'll be staying home from school tomorrow, too. We had a good dinner, and Bud was good about doing his piano after dinner. Bud managed to finish most of his homework in the afternoon, so we didn't have too much to do in the evening.

Snack and bedtime went smoothly, and although Bud was coughing a bit at bedtime, he fell asleep before too long. Here's hoping the kids fevers subside quickly, and they're ready for school again on Wednesday.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Costume Mania

The kids were up at a fairly reasonable hour, given the time change, and M-lady got up to get them some breakfast, letting me sleep a bit (which was very kind). Buster came back up after breakfast and rolled me out of bed.

I hung out for a bit with the kids in the morning, and then got ready for a bike ride. I headed out a little after 11:00, and M-lady was busy finishing up a vest for Bud's Enjolras (from Les Mis) costume. Apparently making sure Buster didn't feel left out, she asked what kind of costume he wanted. He replied that he wanted a Laval costume from Lego Legends of Chima, and M-lady make a clever cape and epaulets for him which he was thrilled to show me when I got back from my ride.

Cousin C was also visiting when I arrived home around 1:30. Apparently Uncle C had dropped him off, and Aunt O was planning on picking him up. The kids were having a good time playing, and took a break for lunch around the same time I ate my lunch.

Buster got a little grumpy after a spat with Cousin C, and holed up in his room for a bit. Bud was reading, so I set Cousin C playing Xbox. Buster cooled off presently, apologized to Cousin C, and joined him in the game. They played Xbox together happily until Aunt O, who'd arrived a bit earlier, informed Cousin C that it was time to go.

M-lady added to Buster's Laval costume, adding the armored belt and Roman-style skirt that Laval wears. Buster was thrilled. In the later afternoon we had a video chat with Granddad B and Grandma Nese, and Buster proudly showed off his costume. Bud also got to open his last birthday present from the grandparents on video.

M-lady made some dinner, and we all ate pretty well. After dinner, M-lady headed out to run some quick errands. I stayed with the kids, and got Bud to write his last thank-you note. When M-lady returned, I headed out to a friends place for a get-together. M-lady marshaled the kids for snack and bedtime, and both kids were sleeping soundly when I returned. Apparently the went to sleep at the new, adjusted time without too much trouble, but we'll see if they can get up at the right time tomorrow morning.

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Getting Things Done

The kids were up this morning fairly early, and M-lady got up with them to get them some breakfast a bit after 8:00. I headed downstairs to help out with the new toaster.

After getting ready, M-lady headed out to run some errands. I hung out with the kids, and had a nice chat with Grandma W for a bit. The kids were fairly rambunctious while I was on the call, but pretty good at entertaining themselves for a bit. After the call wrapped up, I started working on getting all the components out of the remaining component tower and into the new TV stand. Buster helped.

We took a break for lunch a bit after 12:00. I got sandwiches for both kids, and M-lady arrived home as we were getting lunch together. After lunch, Bud and M-lady headed to the library, while Buster and I headed to Fry's to look for some new switches for the home data network. We didn't find what we were looking for at Fry's, but Buster and I had a good time out together.

When we got back, we spent a few minutes resting before getting back to working on the TV components. Buster helped me vacuum the dust out of the old cabinet, and after a few hours we were able to get the new system all set up. Buster spent some time playing a Kinect game after everything was reconnected while I got the DVDs in order a bit.

Bud spent a good chunk of the afternoon working on a social studies project with M-lady, and did a really good job. He'll wrap up the work tomorrow. I headed out to pick up some sushi for dinner, and we all ate well when I got back. After dinner, the kids played together for a bit before Bud did his piano practice and I got Buster's snack for him.

I got Buster ready for bed, and we watched a couple of videos on YouTube before turning out the light. I tried to explain daylight savings time to Buster, but I don't think he quite got a handle on it. Bud seems to have a better grasp, though.

Friday, March 08, 2013

Going Back A Bit

Buster was up early this morning and joined us in bed, but was pretty happy that he didn't have school again today. Bud was good about getting up and getting ready, and I took him to school while M-lady waited with Buster. I came back home, and as soon as Nanny J arrived M-lady and I headed out to Buster's parent-teacher conference.

Buster's doing fine at school, which wasn't a surprise. After meeting with Buster's teacher, M-lady and I split up to head to our respective offices.

M-lady was home in time to take Bud to his piano lesson, and I got home a few minutes before they returned. After saying goodbye to Nanny J, I got stared on dinner, and we fired up the TV. Bud selected to watch a few episodes of the Clone Wars TV show, which we all enjoyed. The kids ate pretty well, and we watched three episodes and their attached featurettes before snack time.

Bud had his Fun Dip/Lik-M-Aid he's been saving up, which turned the inside of his mouth utterly blue. Buster opted for a few letter cookies (we spelled his name), and both kids snacked and then headed up to bed. I started watching Tron with Bud, which he's been asking to see most of this week, before we turned out the light around 9:00.

Thursday, March 07, 2013

A Couple Days Off

Buster has today and tomorrow off for parent-teacher conferences. He was pretty happy about it, and slept in a bit this morning. Bud was up when I checked on him around 7:30, and got himself dressed pretty quickly. I got him some breakfast and took him to school while M-lady waited with Buster until Nanny J arrived.

The kids seem to have had a good day. M-lady and I both arrived home around 5:30, just as it was starting to rain heavily. I got Bud started on homework, and Nanny J took her leave shortly. I snuggled with Buster for a bit, and then got dinner with M-lady a bit after 6:00, as Bud wrapped up his homework.

I headed out around 6:30 to meet a friend for dinner. M-lady had a good evening with the kids. They apparently had some fun with a Karaoke disc Agu made with Red and Black on it, and Bud was really belting out the tune. Both kids were sleeping soundly by the time I got back.

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Flying Kicks

Buster was up around 7:00 this morning, and joined us in bed again for a little while. Bud woke with a bloody nose, but it stopped up pretty quickly, and we otherwise had a pretty standard morning. I took Bud to school while M-lady took Buster.

The kids had a good day, and I met them at TKD. I arrived about 10 minutes before their class finished up, and got to see them practicing their kicks. Bud was working on flying side kicks, and Buster on running jumping front kicks. They were both doing a pretty good job, and seemed to be having a lot of fun.

When class wrapped up, we said goodbye to Nanny J, and I took the kids home. It's a 45 minute drive or so in traffic, so we chatted and listened to music. We ended up listening to some of my 80's collection, which the kids seemed to tolerate OK.

M-lady was home when we arrived, and snuggled with Buster a bit before he got changed back into street clothes. He managed to get changed just before we had some dinner together. The kids ate well, and Bud worked on finishing up his homework before and after dinner.

Before Bud began his piano practice, we had fun singing some of the Les Mis tunes while M-lady played piano. It was pretty fun. Bud did a good job on his piano while Buster played a little bit of Xbox. I got snack with Buster, and we headed upstairs before Bud finished up and had his snack with M-lady.

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Big Birthday

The kids were up fairly early, and Bud was pretty excited for his birthday. The morning routine was fairly standard, and M-lady took the kids to school after I got them breakfast and combed their hair.

I met up with the kids in the afternoon at TKD, where they received their new belts. Bud got his red belt, and Buster got Green. I watched a fair amount of their workout, and they were having a great time. The week after belt testing is usually less drilling and more fun than usual workouts.

I headed back to work, and Nanny J took the kids home. I got home around 5:45, and found M-lady already arrived. Buster was grumpy, and apparently got that way when asked to take his bath. I checked on him, but ended up leaving him alone for a bit to collect himself. We said goodbye to Nanny J and Bud and M-lady and I hung out for a bit and chatted.

After a few minutes, I checked on Buster again, who was back to his happy self. We all got together so Bud could open his gifts from the family, which he thoroughly enjoyed. We had a quick video chat with Ama and Agu, and Bud opened his gifts from them. After gifts, we headed downstairs to get some dinner.

We took a break mid-dinner to have a video chat with Grandma W and Granddad B, and Bud opened his gifts from them as well. It was nice to say hello and chat, if only for a short time. Buster was excited to show off some of his Chima Lego, and Bud chatted with them for a bit as well.

After dinner, I showered Buster, and then Bud and Buster played for the few minutes until snack time. Nanny J had left a tin of cookies for Bud for his birthday, which he kindly shared with the rest of the family. After snack, M-lady and Buster snuggled for a bit before bed, and I watched some Les Mis videos with Bud before we turned out the light. Overall, he was very satisfied with his birthday.

Monday, March 04, 2013

Preschool Homework

Buster was up pretty early, and jumped in bed with us around 7:00. I got up at 7:30, and we did a standard morning routine. Both kids were good about getting ready, and I took Bud to school while M-lady took Buster.

The kids seem to have had a good day. M-lady was already home when I arrived around 5:30, and Buster was having his bath. We said goodbye to Nanny J, and the kids played happily for a while as M-lady and I settled in.

I started getting some dinner ready a bit after 6:00, and eventually got some traction with the rest of the family. Buster was a bit reluctant, and didn't eat a lot, but sat with us as we ate. After dinner, Bud plowed through his homework.

Buster's only 'homework' this year has been an assignment to find a picture which starts with a new letter of the alphabet each week. We keep forgetting over the weekend, so usually send him in with a new picture on Wednesday. This week is 'U', but we all spent some time and searched through magazines for the remaining letters of the alphabet. I think we found everything except 'X'. Buster did a good job of cutting out the pictures, and we pinned them to the bulletin board to be doled out over the coming weeks.

The kids played a little bit of Xbox, and then Bud did piano with M-lady while I played with Buster a little. Snack time was straightforward, and I got Buster into PJs while Bud was in the shower. M-lady watched some videos with Bud while I played on the iPad with Buster before we turned out the light.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Balancing the Attention

The kids were up around 7:30 again today, and played with each other a bit, coming into the room now and then to jump into our bed for a little while. M-lady got up around 8:30 to help them with breakfast, and then came back to bed. I got out of bed a short time later, and helped Buster get dressed.

Around 10:30, I packed up with Buster and we headed out to run some errands together. I tried unsuccessfully to get new shoes for myself, and then we headed to the mall. Buster wanted to his the Lego store first, so we headed that way. Buster was taken with some of the new Chima sets, and opted to spend his points on a small set, which satisfied him greatly. He carried the set with him for the rest of the outing.

He was patient while we hit a Williams-Sonoma to replace our recently failed toaster, and helped carry a small part back out to the car. From there, we headed to a McDonald's for lunch, since I'd had dinner out with Bud on Friday night, and Buster got a little jealous.

We had a good lunch together, and then headed home. I helped Buster put his new set together a bit (he did most of it), and got the new toaster unpacked and set up. Then I changed clothes and headed out for a bike ride while M-lady looked after the kids for a bit.

Bud did a great job on his thank-you letters today, and managed to finish them all up in the evening. He was practicing piano with M-lady when I got home from my ride. I changed clothes and ran out to Home Depot for a quick part, and got back before 5:00. The kids and M-lady were just sitting down to watch the 25th anniversary concert of Les Mis, which kept them occupied for a bit. The kids have been singing Les Mis songs (mostly Red and Black) almost non-stop for about a week now.

I tried a new dish for dinner, which turned out pretty well. We all ate together a little after 6:00, and after dinner (and Bud finished up his last couple thank-you notes), Bud and I played a game together while Buster looked on. Bud did really well, and won the game with a couple of very well-thought-out moves.

We had snack, and I helped Buster into PJs before hanging out with Bud a bit and turning out the light around 9:00. It was a good weekend, and the kids seem in good spirits going into the next week.

Saturday, March 02, 2013

A Very Loud Party

The kids were up around 7:00ish, and in and out of the room for a bit. I rolled out of bed around 8:30 and prompted them to get dressed, and we had some breakfast. After breakfast, the house cleaning began in earnest.

The kids and I focused on picking up downstairs, in particular getting all of Buster's Lego back up to his room, and getting the extraneous toys out of the living room. The kids were pretty good about helping, although Buster got distracted frequently. By mid-morning the downstairs was in pretty good shape, though.

M-lady and I generally kept at getting ready for Bud's party in the afternoon for most of the day. We had a fairly solid plan, but hadn't spent much time executing during the week. The kids were excited (without admitting the cause), and to keep them from walloping each other too hard, I let them play some Xbox before lunch for a bit.

We all had lunch together, and afterward Buster and I rested together for a few minutes. Mid afternoon, I took the kids out to the grocery store, while M-lady headed out to get balloons. We did some final prep when we both got back, and were ready for the kids to arrive for Bud's birthday party a few minutes before the official party start. Kids started arriving around 4:30, and before long we had a screaming houseful of 8-year-olds.

Bud has about 10 kids from his class, and along with Buster, Cousin C, and one other sibling about their age, we had a full house. Bud's party was themed around The Hobbit, so the first party game was intended to be shooting Smaug: the kids had squeeze rockets, and we put up a few pictures of Smaug for them to shoot at. The kids were shooting at each other pretty much from the beginning, though.

After a bit of pandemonium, we calmed things down with the second game: pickpocketing a troll. I sat on a bench with a purse behind me, and the kids attempted to get a gemstone out of the purse without me noticing, one by one. This was a quieter game, and the kids seemed to have a lot of fun.

That led us to the main event of the party, a showing of the 1977 Rankin/Bass cartoon of The Hobbit. Some of the kids lost interest, though, and were running around a bit. We paused at the halfway point for dinner, and the kids had pizza while watching the remainder of the film.

After the movie wrapped up, Bud opened gifts, and then we did the usual cake routine. The kids had a few more minutes to run around with squeeze rockets before the parents started arriving to take them home. Aunt O and Cousin C stayed for a while, but the volume level dropped dramatically after a very successful party.

We played with one of Bud's gifts and had a snack before saying goodnight to Cousin C and Aunt O. Then it was shower time (the kids had gotten pretty sweaty running around), and into bed. The kids were up for an extra half-hour or so. Both seem to have had a really good time at Bud's party, and overall we judged it a success.

Friday, March 01, 2013

Stud Kids

The kids joined us in bed around 7:00 this morning, and both were dressed when I got up around 7:30. We had breakfast a bit early, since they were already dressed, and I took Buster to school while M-lady took Bud.

M-lady got home around 4:30 today, and took Bud to school while Nanny J prepared Buster and brought him to TKD for his belt test. I met Nanny J and Buster at TKD, and wished Nanny J a good weekend as she headed home. Buster's test started about 40 minutes late (unsurprisingly), and he did a great job. He was the smallest student in the mid-level belt test (orange and green belts), and won an award during the test for best form.

Bud and M-lady arrived directly from Bud's piano lesson. Bud did a good job at his lesson, and then hung out until Buster's test wrapped up. M-lady took Buster home (via a couple errands) while I stayed around to watch Bud's test. He also did a great job, giving a very solid performance.

Bud's test finished up around 7:45, and we grabbed some dinner on the way home. M-lady and Buster had arrived home a little before us, and Buster had just gotten into PJs after his bath when Bud and I arrived. The kids had a snack, and Bud took a shower while M-lady played on the iPad a bit with Buster.

Bud and I hung out together a bit, and played on iPads together until we turned out the light a bit after 9:00.