Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Year's Eve Lunch

The kids were their bouncy selves in the morning. M-lady headed out to ballet around 9:30, and I got up to get the kids some breakfast. The kids and I had a pretty mellow morning, and I eventually got them to get dressed before lunchtime.

The kids and I headed over to Ama and Agu's house for lunch, where we met up with Aunt O and Cousin C. M-lady joined us a short time later, and we all had a very nice lunch. The kids had fun playing together, until we all rolled home at about 2:30.

We spent a little time out and about, getting errands done (which took a couple of stops). The kids were very patient, and M-lady took them home while I finished up the last leg. I tossed a football outside with Bud for a bit, and Buster stayed busy with his Lego set.

After dinner, we all sat together and watched an episode of Weapon Masters, which the kids seem to have become interested in. That took us to snack and bedtime.

Buster's had a bit of a runny nose for a while, and developed a cough the past couple days. It was bad enough this evening to give him a dose of medication, and he fell asleep peacefully. Unfortunately, he was coughing again a bit later, and I propped him back up in bed and got a humidifier going in his room. That seemed to do the trick, and he slept soundly the rest of the night.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Lots of Errands

The kids were in and out of the bedroom this morning, and spent a good amount of time snuggling properly. I pulled myself out of bed a bit after 9:00 to get them some breakfast, and M-lady joined us a few minutes later.

After getting the kids dressed and getting their laundry started, I headed out with Buster to run a few errands. We dropped off some packages at the local UPS store, and Buster was treated to some hot chocolate by the staff for being a good helper and carrying some packages in with me. He was pretty pleased with himself. We hit the grocery store on the way home, and arrived shortly before noon.

M-lady took Bud to a playdate with Friend N at about 11:00, and then ran some errands of her own. She got home a few minutes after we did. Aunt O and Cousin C arrived a few minutes later, and we all had lunch together. The kids played for a while, and when they started getting bored Aunt O took them to the park. M-lady headed out to pick up Bud a few minutes later, and we all convened at home again around 2:00.

After playing on the Xbox for a short time, Aunt O took Cousin C home. We all loaded up in the car to head to the mall to run a few more errands, including picking up a Lego set for Buster for which he's been saving his allowance for a few months. M-lady did some quick shopping as well, and we made it out without too much fuss, getting back home before 5:00.

M-lady then headed out to run yet more errands, while Buster tore into his Lego and Bud worked on the Rainbow Loom. M-lady picked up dinner on her way home, and we all ate well when she arrived. Buster got to use his new chopstick trainer, and did very well with them.

After dinner, the kids tackled piano with M-lady, and then had sequential baths with the bath bombs they received for Christmas. When bedtime arrived, the whole house was scented. After a snack, I let Buster work on his Lego set for a few more minutes before we read a quick story and turned out the light around 8:30. He fell asleep pretty quickly.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Rainbow Loom Time

The kids were up a little later this morning, as they'd been up a bit the night before. They came and curled up in bed with us for a while, and were a bit more sedate than usual, which was nice. I got up around 9:30 and got some breakfast for them, and M-lady joined us presently. After breakfast, we sat down to spend some time with the Rainbow Looms the kids got for Christmas.

The kids had spent a little time with them before this morning, but I did some research and pulled up some YouTube instructional videos. Bud really got into it, and we spent some time working on different patterns for a good chunk of the morning.

M-lady and I ended up snoozing again for a short time before lunch. I got up to get lunch for the kids, and help Bud fix up one of his loom projects. After getting the kids squared away, I headed out for a bike ride while the kids were playing outside for a bit.

M-lady had the kids write thank-you notes while I was out, and they got that wrapped up around the time I returned. After getting myself cleaned up, I loaded the kids up and we headed to the park to throw baseballs around again. When it started getting a bit darker out, we headed over to the local Michael's to see if we could find more Rainbow Loom rubber bands: fortunately, they had the supplies immediately inside the front door, so we didn't have to go searching. We picked out some bands and came home with our supplies.

The rest of the evening was spent with the Rainbow Loom, Xbox, dinner, and bath time. Buster was excited to use one of the bath bombs he got for Christmas, so I supervised that. The kids did their piano practice with M-lady for the first time in a few days, and they both did a good job, apparently not rusting much during their several-day hiatus.

M-lady got snacks for the kids (some more of M-lady's birthday cake), and I got Buster ready for bed before spending Bud's bedtime working on a new pattern on the Loom with him. He got to bed a little late, but was happy with the day.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

A Happy Birthday for M-Lady

The kids were up around 8:00ish, but didn't bug us too much. Bud did come in and wish M-lady a Happy Birthday, which was nice. M-lady was up around 8:30, and headed off to ballet class, and I rolled out of bed a short time later to mobilize the kids.

I got them to make birthday cards for M-lady, and then convinced them to have a quick breakfast and get dressed so we could run out and pick up some flowers. They were a little balky at getting dressed, but we made it out before M-lady arrived home. She was home when we got back, however.

The rest of the family arrived at about noon to celebrate M-lady's birthday. I put some lunch together, and Aunt O brought the cake. The kids had a great time playing together, as usual. Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C headed home around 2:30, and I spent some time hanging out with Buster before M-lady and I packed up and headed out, leaving the kids with Ama and Agu for the afternoon.

The kids had a good time, and apparently Cousin C came over again to play for a while. Bud and Buster got to sleep a little later than usual, but were sleeping soundly when M-lady and I got home a bit after 10:00.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Longish Shopping Day

The kids were up around 7:30, and did a good job of playing together this morning, albeit rather loudly. I pulled myself out of bed around 8:30, and ran out to get myself a baseball glove, which I'd neglected when I got gloves for the kids for Christmas. I returned with my booty at about 9:30, while M-lady was getting some breakfast for the kids.

We rolled out the door around 10:00, and spent the next five hours or so furniture shopping, with a break back at home for lunch. The kids were terrific, although the after-lunch part of that was enticed with iPads, which kept them entertained while we placed some orders. The shopping was very successful, and we managed to get everything we were looking for today.

We got home shortly after 3:00, and I took the kids to the park to throw baseballs around while M-lady ran out to do a quick shopping trip. The kids and I had a good time at the park. They tired me out by both throwing balls at me alternately. Bud's got a decent arm, although he's still learning that his arm will get tired. He's also generally picked up how to catch a ball with his glove. Buster is more comfortable fielding grounders right now, but can throw the ball a reasonable distance, if not particularly accurately.

We headed home around 4:00, and found Aunt O and Uncle C were dropping off Cousin C for a bit. The kids played together well for about 90 minutes before we did the mostly-usual movie night, with M-lady and I making an executive decision to watch a Cirque Du Soleil show when the kids couldn't agree on a movie. They enjoyed the show for the better part of an hour before they ran off to play some more after eating their dinners.

Cousin C was retrieved by his parents at about 7:00, and Bud and Buster and I sat down to play with the new Snap Electronics set for a little while. We built the first five or six projects together before the kids were ready to do something else. They had a good time, and I expect we'll get a lot of use out of the set.

Snack time arrived, and the kids had some oranges along with cookies. I got Buster showered and into PJs, and then read stories and watched a few videos with him before we turned the light out a few minutes after 8:30.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

A Grand City Day

The kids were up a bit before 8:00, and headed downstairs to play with Christmas loot. Buster spent pretty much all his free time today working on Lego, and Bud did some reading and played with his Rainbow Loom along with his Lego work. Around 9:00 M-lady and I got up and got going, and I got the kids dressed and fed. We headed out the door around 10:00.

We headed up to San Francisco, and parked fairly close to the Dragon Gates in Chinatown. The whole family had a good time walking down Grant, and we did some shopping and looking before heading back. We got some lunch in Union Square, and then wandered over to the Curran where we saw the musical Beauty and the Beast.

The kids enjoyed the show overall, and we headed back to the car afterward. There was a fair bit of traffic on the way home, so we stopped for dinner and milkshakes (Buster's suggestion) on the way. We were all happy and satisfied with the day when we arrived home around 6:30.

The kids got back to their loot, and at about 7:30 spent a little bit of time playing on the Xbox before snack and bed time. They were fairly tired out after a long day, and went to sleep pretty quickly.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

A Happy and Successful Christmas

The kids headed downstairs this morning around 7:15, and jumped into bed with us as soon as our stated minimum wake-up time hit, 7:30. The kids were good about not coming in before then, though. We headed downstairs pretty quickly, and got started on discovering the gifts in the stockings which Santa had brought.

I got some breakfast together while the kids played with some of their stocking goodies, and we ate around 8:30. After breakfast, M-lady and I got dressed (we let the kids stay in PJs), and had video calls with the more distant grandparents so the families could open gifts together. The kids were pretty excited, and it was nice to see the distant families.

Ama, Agu, Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C arrived at about 10:00, as we wrapped up a call with Granddad B, Grandma Nese, and Aunt K. We set up and quickly got down to business of opening gifts, which everyone enjoyed. Buster spent most of the day building Lego sets, and Bud settled down to read some books. I got started on making lunch pretty quickly after the presents, and we ate at about 1:00.

Our visitors stayed for a while longer, and eventually took their leave at about 3:00. The kids and I spent a little time outside trying out their new baseball gloves: Bud got a good handle on using it to catch, and Buster had a good time playing with his as well. I unfortunately forgot to get a glove for myself, so I was at a little bit of a disadvantage: fortunately, Bud doesn't throw very hard yet. I need to get a glove soon, though, and Bud put in the request for a bat as well.

The kids spent a chunk of the evening playing Lego Marvel Super Heros on the Xbox, and M-lady put together a nice dinner for everyone. After dinner, we played a little bit more before having a snack, showering, and getting ready for bed. The kids were a bit tired out and grumpy at the end of the day, so we did bedtime a few minutes early. Buster passed out pretty quickly once tucked in, although we had a nice recap of the day together before he fell asleep.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve Excitement

The kids landed in our bed around 8:00, super excited that today was Christmas Eve. We all got up around 8:30 and got dressed, ready for the cleaners to arrived at about 9:00. The cleaners ended up arriving a little late, and M-lady headed off to ballet class shortly after the arrived.

The kids and I spent the morning playing Starbound, breaking at about 11:30. M-lady arrived home shortly after we'd gotten started on lunch.

After eating, the kids tackled their piano practice, and I got started on making some cookies. Bud decided to go out back and play rather than helping with the cookies, and Buster busied himself with the synthesizer. Buster decided to help out eventually, though, and helped get the dough onto the baking sheets.

After turning out the cookies, I ran off to the grocery store to get some supplies for tomorrow. When I returned, I had a few minutes to pick some clemetines, and then we all loaded up in the car and headed over to Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C's place.

We met Ama and Agu there as well, and the kids had a good time playing together all evening. Uncle C put together a solid Christmas feast, complete with a turkey. Everyone ate well, and we had a nice time chatting until fairly late in the evening.

We got home around 9:00, and I got Buster into the shower as Bud bathed himself. After cleaning up the kids and getting them into the Christmas jammies, M-lady got a picture of them and I read the traditional 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. We tucked the kids in, listening for reindeer on the roof. Buster was asleep within about 10 minutes, and Bud soon afterward.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Three Play Dates

The kids jumped into bed with us around 8:00, in what will undoubtedly become a theme of these holiday weeks. We got up around 9:00, and got the kids dressed and fed. At about 9:30 Bud's friend N arrived to hang out for the morning, and Buster's friend S arrived around 10:00.

The kids had a good time playing together, mostly separately, and at about noon our visitors' parents arrived to retrieve their children. The kids said goodbye to their guests, and we got started on lunch.

The kids ate pretty well, and we relaxed and played some games on the computer after lunch. At about 2:00, M-lady took the kids to a dentist appointment, which went well and quickly. After the dentist, M-lady took the kids to Ama and Agu's house, where the kids got to play with a visiting friend's children, who happened to be Bud's age. They apparently had a really good time, and M-lady didn't get home with the boys until nearly 4:00.

When they got home, the kids opted to play outside for a bit, and met up with the neighbor's kids. They played over at the neighbor's house until I retrieved them for dinner around 5:30. We had a nice dinner together, and then all watched a Mickey Mouse Christmas special together before the kids did a quick piano practice and got ready for bed.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Three Breakfasts

The kids jumped in bed with us fairly early again, and then ran off to play for a bit. M-lady headed out to run some errands before things got too crowded, and I got up at about 9:30 to get the kids some breakfast.

M-lady arrived home as I was getting breakfast together, and the kids ate pretty well. After breakfast, we had a few minutes to hang out before we packed up and headed over to Ama and Agu's to meet up with Aunt O and family to celebrate Uncle C's birthday. We had a late brunch there, and the kids had a good time playing with Cousin C.

After a bit, Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C headed home, and M-lady and I left Bud and Buster with Ama and Agu for a few minutes while we ran out to do the grocery shopping. While we were out, the kids had a good time watching a video tour of the ISS with Agu. We picked them up again before heading home.

After unloading the groceries, the kids and I played some computer games and worked on our latest Mindstorms robot for a little while. Bud had some fun playing Starbound, which is a Minecraft-style sandbox game. He was starting to get the hang of it when we took a break to get started on dinner.

While M-lady and I were making waffles for dinner, Bud shot baskets out back and Buster played on the synthesizer. We had a great dinner, and finished up fairly early, before 6:00. The kids and I watched a little TV, including a Christmas special, before I got Buster into the bath and Bud did his piano. Bud and I hung out for a few minutes while Buster practiced after getting out of the bath, and I got snack for both kids after that.

Buster and I read a few stories, and then watched a couple of Lego Ninjago videos on YouTube before turning out the light.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

First Day of Vacation

Buster woke early and crawled into bed with us, snuggled for about 30 seconds, and then ran off to wake Bud up to have him join us as well. The kids were reasonably good for fairly long stretches of time (for them) while both in our bed, but I did have to eject them once or twice for being too loud or rambunctious.

M-lady headed out to ballet before too long, and the kids let me sleep until about 9:30, when I got up to get them some breakfast. After breakfast, we played together for a bit, before Bud headed outside to play with the neighbors for a while. Buster and I worked on the Lego Mindstorms stuff, eventually breaking to have some lunch after M-lady got home.

I ran out for a bike ride in the afternoon, and the kids were wrestling fiercely when I got home. They kept at it until I brought them downstairs to chill out in front of the TV. We watched a couple of good episodes of How Do They Do It?, which was very informative. After watching the show, the kids came with me to run out and pick up some dinner.

We all ate well, and after dinner the kids handled their piano practice and played on the keyboard. We had a little bit of Wii time and watched some more TV before snack and bed time.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Late Shopping

Buster was again a little tough to rouse, but otherwise the morning went as smoothly. M-lady took the kids to school after breakfast, along with cookies for their respective class holiday feasts, and I headed off to work.

M-lady met the kids at piano, where they both did a great job. She brought them home, while I picked up dinner on the way home from work. Ama and Agu came over, and we all had dinner together while watching Animusic, which we hadn't seen in a while.

As the movies were winding down, M-lady and I made a break for it to do some last-minute shopping, which was pretty successful. Ama and Agu put the kids to bed, and the kids were sleeping soundly by the time we got home.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

It's A Show!

Bud was up when I checked on his this morning shortly after 7:30, as was Buster. Buster was easier to get dressed than when he's totally asleep, which was nice. The kids did the Lego advent calendar after getting dressed, they had some breakfast. They grabbed their holiday gifts for their teachers, and I took them to school.

The kids had a good day. Buster got to watch Bud perform his musical before lunchtime, apparently. The kids did TKD in the afternoon, and M-lady got home to relieve Nanny J while I had a late meeting. M-lady got dinner for the kids, and got them back to the school by about 6:30.

I arrived about 15 minutes later, and Ama and Agu had arrived as well. The school auditorium was packed, and Buster sat with Ama and Agu in pretty good seats while M-lady and I stood in the back. M-lady had brought the big camera for me, which I used to film parts of the show.

Bud did a great job. There's a huge step up in the performance quality from 2nd to 3rd grade, apparently, and the show was well done. The kids delivered their lines clearly, and occasionally with some intonation as well. Bud stepped up and delivered a few lines, sang some songs with the group, and even sold a couple of jokes. I was very proud of his performance.

It was about 8:00 when we got home, and I got a snack for the kids. They didn't have homework, and it was too late to start piano, so we just got them ready for bed. Buster and I read a few stories, watched a couple of SloMo Guys videos, and turned the light out at about 8:45.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Running A Little Late

Buster was a little tough to get out of bed this morning, but other than that, the routine was standard, with M-lady taking the kids to school.

The kids seem to have had a good day. Bud spent a chunk of the day with his class rehearsing their musical, with one full run-through and a performance for one of the other classes. Buster seemed to have had a good day as well.

I picked the boys up from TKD at about 5:30, where they seemed to be doing a good job. Traffic was pretty heavy on the way home, but we had fun listening to and singing Christmas songs. We got home around 6:15, and headed in.

M-lady was already home, and after getting the kids changed out of TKD uniforms, I got them started on homework. Homework took a while, with a brief visit from Ama and Agu in the middle, and led into dinner. We didn't wrap up dinner until about 7:30, so piano led to snack time. Buster had been really looking forward to playing Lego Rock Band, though, and opted to skip snack and play the game instead.

I helped Buster get ready for bed, and then watched some Mythbusters with Bud after he'd showered while M-lady read stories with Buster. Bud was pretty excited about his musical, and spent most of the evening singing one song or another from it.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Lighter Evening

The kids were good about getting up in the morning, although Buster was a little slow, as usual. M-lady had an early meeting, so I got the kids going, got them breakfast, combed hair, and took them to school. We went a few minutes early to drop off some canned goods for the food drive.

The kids seem to have had a good day. They did TKD in the afternoon, and both bathed after class. I got home a few minutes before M-lady, and we said goodbye to Nanny J. The kids were busy playing a game of their own devising, and I eventually interrupted after about 20 minutes to get them started on homework.

They opted for dinner first, so I got that ready. M-lady joined us, and we all had a nice dinner together. After dinner, they worked on homework, which is light this week. Buster finished quickly and headed off to do his piano practice, and then made for the Wii. Bud finished up his homework and played on the synthesizer for a while before we got started on snack time.

After snack, I got Buster ready for bed and read stories with him, and Bud did his piano with M-lady. M-lady headed out to run some errands after piano, and I settled Bud into bed after turning the lights out for Buster. They were a little concerned about M-lady going out, but went to sleep pretty quickly in any case.

Monday, December 16, 2013

New Sport Idea

Bud was up around 6:00 this morning, coughing up phlegm. He'd had a bit of congestion settle into his chest, and it took a little effort to get it out. We sat him up in bed a little, and he went back to sleep.

The kids were a little slow to get out of bed: Buster as usual, and Bud due to being up a little earlier. Bud felt fine, though, and we did the standard morning routine. M-lady took the kids to school, and I headed off to work.

The kids seem to have had a good day. I got home a few minutes after M-lady at about 5:30, and we said goodbye to Nanny J. The kids and I watched a little bit of MNF, and I got started on dinner while the kids played with trains for a bit.

We all had dinner together, and the kids tackled their homework afterward. Buster did his piano practice with M-lady, and then settled in front of the TV with me to watch the US Olympic Trials for the luge. Buster seemed quite taken with the concept, and wanted to give it a try. He hasn't seen a crash yet, though.

Bud finished his homework, and the kids had a snack before Bud did his piano. I got Buster ready for bed, and we read a story together before I handed him off to M-lady and went to hang out with Bud. Bud was a bit slow taking a shower, but we got to watch about 15 minutes of Mythbusters before bed.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Wrapping Up the Weekend

Bud actually crawled into bed with me first this morning, around 7:00. The kids were a little better about hanging out quietly in the morning, and went and played together a bit before I got up around 9:30 to get them some breakfast. A short time after breakfast, I loaded them up and took them to get haircuts.

The haircuts were quick, and the kids were good. We came home and I trimmed up a couple loose hairs before getting both kids into the shower. After getting cleaned up, Bud and I had some lunch together. Buster deferred, and a short time later Cousin C and Uncle C arrived.

The kids played together for a chunk of the afternoon. I set them to work picking clementines for a while, and they got everything within their reach. They played outside, and later came inside to play some Rock Band.

M-lady and Aunt O arrived around 3:00, and the kids were glad to see their mothers. Our guests headed home, and M-lady settled in after snuggling with the kids. The kids and I had a quick video call with Granddad B and Grandma Nese before I headed out to pick up some dinner.

We all ate a nice dinner together when I got back, and afterward the kids and I had a video call with the other set of grandparents, Grandma W and Granddad B. We wished Granddad B a Happy Birthday, and Buster showed off some of the skills he's learned on the keyboard. After the call, I made one more batch of fudge with Buster's help before we did snack and bedtime.

M-lady did some piano with Bud while I got Buster ready for bed. Buster and I read a couple stories, watched some SloMo Guys, and turned the light out at about 8:30.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Checking Off the List

Buster crawled into bed with me around 6:30, and Bud joined us around 7:30. The kids got rowdy at that point, so I kicked them out of bed. They played, came back to bed, and got rowdy again. I eventually got up shortly after 9:00 to get them some breakfast.

While I was cooking breakfast, I had a muscle in my back suddenly strain itself (either I'm getting old, or Buster kicked me in the back at some point earlier). It slowed down pancake production for a bit, but I managed to finish up breakfast before going to rest for a little while.

We got ourselves together around 10:30 and headed to the library, where we returned a bunch of books and checked out new ones. The kids immediately sat down with new books when we got back, and joined me for lunch a short time later. We headed outside for a little while to start the clementine harvest, and the kids had fun filling a bag.

At about 1:00 we headed over to Ama and Agu's, where the kids spent the afternoon. I got a bike ride and grocery shopping in, while the kids played games and watched the recent live special of The Sound of Music. I picked the kids up around 4:30, and we headed home to unload the groceries before heading out again for a quick dinner.

When we got home, the kids and I watched a little bit of TV before working together to start making a culinary holiday treat for neighbors and family. The kids were pretty helpful, and we were productive until it was time for the kids to bathe and start getting ready for bed. After Buster's bath, we had a quick snack, and then did the bedtime routine. Buster picked one of his library books to read, and I watched some Mythbusters with Bud before we turned his light out a bit after 9:00.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Christmas Specials

Buster was a little slow getting up this morning, but otherwise it was a pretty standard routine. Bud seems to have a light cold, and complained of a minor sore throat and stuffiness, but it didn't seem to be a major distraction for him. The weather continues to get a little warmer, and it was in the low 40s when I dropped them off.

The kids seem to have had a good day at school, and Nanny J took the kids to their piano lesson, where I met them shortly after 5:00. We wished Nanny J a good weekend, and I sat with the kids for the remainder of their lessons. Both kids did a good job, although Bud is a little rusty on his reading.

We grabbed a pizza on the way home, and then did our usual movie night. The kids didn't want to see Despicable Me 2, which arrived in the mail this week, but instead chose the Claymation Christmas special and a Peanuts Christmas special. The kids got to stay up a few minutes late, and I got them both to bed.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Efficient Evening

M-lady headed out this morning before 4:30, heading to the airport to catch a flight to New York for a weekend of shows. Buster crawled into bed with me at about 7:00, already dressed, and we got up around 7:30 to get ready for school. The kids had a quick breakfast, and I dropped them off without fuss. It was fairly chilly, so the kids wore heavy coats and Buster wore his mittens again.

The kids had a good day, and I got home a bit after 5:30. Buster was having his bath, and after he got out we said goodbye to Nanny J. Buster was interested in starting on dinner, and Bud got started on his reading on the computer. We tackled dinner, homework, and piano in fairly quick succession, and had a few minutes to play on the Wii before snack time.

M-lady called while I was putting the kids to bed, and Buster was really excited to say hello and goodnight. The kids were good about going to bed, and both were asleep pretty quickly.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Finding Gloves

Bud crawled into bed with us early this morning, complaining of a bad dream. M-lady had to leave early, so I got up with the kids at about 7:30. Buster was a little hard to get out of bed, but I eventually got them dressed and down for breakfast (after a stop by the Lego advent calendars).

It wasn't quite so cold on the way to school this morning, but Buster insisted on wearing the one mitten we'd found for him. He apparently kept track of it and brought it home, though. I picked up the kids from TKD in the afternoon, and we had a nice chat on the way home. Bud apparently needed his home-made costume for his musical tomorrow, but M-lady had that under control.

I got Buster into the bath when we got home, and Bud turned up Buster's second mitten, which he was very excited about. It was tough getting Buster to take his mittens off for the bath.

Bud got started on homework, and M-lady got dinner ready. We ate more or less sequentially, with Bud eating last. Buster tackled his homework and piano, and played on the Wii for a few minutes as Bud wrapped up his homework. After snack, I got Buster ready for bed while Bud did his piano. M-lady finished putting Buster to bed, and I watched a few minutes of Mythbusters with Bud while M-lady got Bud's costume together. He was all set by the time we turned the light out around 9:00.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

New Reading Homework

Buster was sleepy this morning, but reasonably responsive when I rolled him out of bed around 8:45. Bud was already up and reading. The kids were pretty good about getting ready, and excited to see frost on the ground (and the windshield) when we headed out to the car to go to school. They wore their heavy coats, and both asked for gloves for the sub-40 degree morning.

I headed off to work, and got home around 5:45. The kids were playing very loudly in the living room, singing a couple lines from a song they heard at the 4th-5th grade musical today. I have no idea what the words are, since they seem to be some sort of foreign language as interpreted by the kids. In any case, they boisterously sang the two lines over and over for about 30 minutes.

I got them going on homework around the time M-lady got home. Homework was fairly quick, and we had some dinner afterward. Then the usual piano practice and playing Wii. Bud had one more piece of homework, though, which included reading books and taking quizes online. I got him set up on the netbook I'd given him a little while ago, and he got a couple of books knocked out before we took a break to watch a couple of the new Despicable Me 2 mini-movies and have a snack.

After snack, Bud tackled another book and spent time hanging out with M-lady, and I read some Lego stories with Buster before we turned out the light around 8:30.

Monday, December 09, 2013

I'm Back

I was away for a few days visiting a friend to help celebrate his 40th birthday, and flew into SFO this morning at about 10:00. I arrived home around noon, just as Nanny J and Buster arrived home as well. Buster was pretty happy to see me, and kept me company while I unpacked and cleaned up.

Bud got home around 3:00, and the kids played together during the afternoon. Buster spent some time working on the Lego Mindstorms set, and I helped him occasionally. I wrapped up work around 5:00, and worked with Bud on some of his computer homework he's got this week before we said goodbye to Nanny J at 5:45.

I got the kids working on homework at about 6:00, and M-lady arrived home to help get dinner together a short time later. After dinner, the kids had a quick piano practice. Buster proceeded to play on the Wii for a little while, as Bud spent time working on making cards for a new card game he's inventing. I played a test game with him for a few minutes before snacktime.

The kids had a quick snack, and then we headed for bed. I helped Buster get ready for bed, and then spent time watching Mythbusters with Bud before turning out the light a few minutes after 9:00.

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Maybe Beginning a Cold

Buster woke with slight sniffles and a cough, and crawled into bed with us around 7:00. He seemed fine after getting dressed and opening his Lego for the day, though, and the kids and I headed down to breakfast. M-lady took the kids to school, and I headed off to work.

The kids seem to have had a good day. They were able to use the craft fair tickets we got yesterday at the craft fair after school, and each made a few crafts. They seem to have had a good time. They did TKD in the afternoon, and Buster was taking his bath when I got home around 5:30.

We said goodbye to Nanny J, and the kids played with the synthesizer for a few minutes before I got started on putting dinner together. They ate pretty well, and were just getting started on homework when M-lady arrived home. She helped them with their homework while I cleaned up after dinner, and then did piano practice with the kids.

Buster and I read a story together and watched some SloMo Guys before turning out the light at about 8:30. His runny nose came back a bit in the evening, but it didn't seem to bother him too much. He fell asleep within 5 minutes of turning out the lights.

Monday, December 02, 2013

Back to School

Buster got in bed with us around 7:00, and was really anxious to get up and get ready. He even went to get Bud out of bed. The reason they were so excited was the new Star Wars Lego Advent Calendar, which we started yesterday! The rule is they need to be dressed before they can open the day's miniset, which turns out to be pretty compelling motivation. The kids were dressed by 7:35, and opening their Lego for the day. After a quick construction, I headed downstairs with them to get some breakfast.

I took the kids to school, and we ran around for a few minutes before class figuring out where to buy tickets for the craft fair after school tomorrow. With the tickets, the kids will be able to complete some crafts, which Bud has found fun in the past. Buster looked reasonably interested, so we got a few tickets for the kids. Bud then hustled off to class, and I walked Buster to his class, where we arrived about 30 seconds before the door opened and he trotted in.

The kids seem to have had a good day. I got home around 5:30, as Buster was coming out of the bath. M-lady arrived a few minutes later. We said goodbye to Nanny J, and the kids asked to play on the synthesizer for a bit. They had a great time playing and dancing until dinner time.

The kids ate reasonably well, and then tackled their homework. Time was ticking on, though, and piano practice ate up the rest of the evening. M-lady was feeling a little tired, so I put both kids to bed. I read stories with Buster, and then watched a little bit of Mythbusters with Bud. Both kids fell asleep pretty quickly.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Missed Morning

The kids were in bed with us around 8:00, and fairly rambunctious until M-lady got up to get them some breakfast at about 8:30. I got up around 9:30, and snoozed on the couch until about noon (with kids occasionally crawling on me).

We had some lunch together, and I played with the kids a little bit. Buster and I worked on the Lego Mindstorms robot, and Bud had fun with his helicopters and the synthesizer. Eventually Bud and I got started on getting the boxes of Christmas decorations down from the high shelves in the garage. The whole family helped to transport the boxes into the living room, and we spent time getting the tree decorated.

Bud and I put the lights on the tree, although we discovered that most of out light strands have died. We'll see about picking up some new lights in the after-Christmas sales. The kids put ornaments on the lower 2/3rds of the tree, and M-lady did the top tier. I also took a couple of slightly damaged ornaments out to the garage for repairs.

After the tree was trimmed, M-lady and I started getting ready for our evening outing. Ama and Agu came over, as well as Aunt O, Uncle C, and Cousin C. The kids stayed with their grandparents, and the middle generation headed out to a show up in the city for the evening. The kids apparently had a good time together.

We got home around 10:00pm, and said goodnight to Ama (Agu had taken Cousin C home to put him to bed). The kids head back to school tomorrow after a week off, so hopefully they'll be ready to get up a little early.