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Journal Key:

Green = Steve | George = navy | Janet = Purple | Evelyn = Black

4/4/13 (Thursday) - Mommy's birthday!

There are a couple of bad habits we've gotten into with Owen that we may try to get out of soon, which will be painful for all of us. One is that we need to get him drinking out of normal cups and just ditch the sippies. We had a fight over that this evening. He wanted his milk in "a different cup."

The other thing...well that just might be a fight that we have to fight anew every day. Owen wants to have "a snack" instead of actually eat his dinner.

Wearing his "wings" (read: his bath towel) has become a necessary event in the evening. The problem is, he very pitifully can't untangle his towel without help, so he needs mommy or daddy to hold up his wings for him. Then he carefully takes one corner of the towel in one hand, and one corner in the other, and whishes off.

Today was the first nice weather in a long time, so Owen finally got to be outside at YBR. That's where he was when I got there. Usually the other kids all notice that I'm there before Owen does, and they keep yelling at him. But this time he actually spotted me, which was nice (though the other way is funny). I came up to him: he was inside a play house in the back yard. I began to notice how very filthy he was. I don't exactly know how he does it. There was mulch in his hair, on his coat, on his pants--Evelyn and I later noticed independently that it was up his nose as well. Miss Vina took a minute to wipe his hands and face with a wipe, which came away looking distinctly brown when she was done. This from the boy who got upset when a little bit of melted chocolate was on his fingertips.

4/5/13 (Friday)

I picked Owen up from YBR, and he and I went on an adventure: we picked up the dry cleaning. I'd parked over on 4th, so we didn't have to walk all the way there and back. I did have to carry his lunch box and nap bag, though. Miraculously, I managed to not have to carry Owen. We just moseyed along, looking at things. A man jogged past us, and soon he was three blocks away. Once we were near the bank, there was landscaping with borders that were excellent for walking on. Really, we managed beautifully: it only took us about twenty minutes to walk a total of two blocks.

4/6/13 (Saturday)

In the morning, we played with our set of big foam blocks. Owen built something that started out as a castle but which he eventually decided was a "village." I picked out a block and told him I'd live there. He protested that I can't because I'm too big. It's awfully nice that he's building things, though!

Owen didn't get to go (he was napping), but Cara had a really great birthday party today at Monster Mini Golf. There were about nine girls there, mostly from ABC. I'd bought white T-shirts and fabric markers, and each girl got to decorate her own shirt. In the black light, they glowed. Everyone had pizza (well, I got mozzarella sticks for the girls who weren't interested) and Cara got to put her hand print on a piece of black paper; it'll go on the wall to commemorate the day. After that, the girls got to go play golf.

I'd been worried about how long golf might take, but it turned out fine! The rules were that Cara got to go first every time. The girls basically formed a line, and each of them just kept hitting her ball, following it along until she reached a hole. At the seventh hole, we were right outside the DJ booth. The DJ made a big deal about Cara's birthday, and Cara had to hit a big rubber ball with a little plastic club, wearing a big bow tie, a birthday crown, and funny glasses. She rolled a giant die to see how many shots she got: ten. (She rolled twice.) She made it in four.

We were making very quick progress, so we got to stop for a dance-off. One of the employees handed out prizes while the girls danced to "YMCA." I got a tiny lizard because I danced a little, too.

After golf, all of the girls got cards to play in the arcade. I ended up playing air hockey with several little girls, including Cara, who eventually was so overcome by the desire to open her gifts that we had to go home.

4/7/13 (Sunday) - Cara's birthday!

Having had a very big celebration yesterday, we went low-key today. The only guests were Aunt Claire and all of the grandparents. The kids ran around and played, Cara opened presents, Owen helped us sing Happy Birthday, and then he helped Cara blow out the candles.

Before everyone left, Cara wanted to show them how she could ride her bike around the block. It was a beautiful afternoon!

The whole family stayed outside to do some yardwork and some playing. Both kids blew bubbles and rode their bikes (well, Owen rides without peddling). While Steve was inside taking care of laundry and I was weeding, they rode together over to Juliana's driveway, where, if I can trust my interpretation of what I heard, they rode in circles a lot. Their fun culminated in a very impressive game involving sitting on their bikes on the sidewalk, facing each other, and then ramming into each other.

We went out to Home Depot to pick up some plants and Target to pick up some ice cream. Cara looked and looked at the cases and saw nothing she wanted. Eventually she told us what she was looking for, and we found it: raspberry sorbet. Cara ate some outside while Steve dug holes for the new plants. Owen got to have some, too. He likes this ice cream!

4/8/13 (Monday)

For a long time, my discussions with Owen when I pick him up have been him asking me where Cara and Daddy are and me explaining it to him. Today, instead, he told me that Cara was at ballet and Daddy was still at work, but he was going to get her. (This was a mish-mosh of what I usually tell him and what happened last Friday.)

When we were pulling away, I noticed the giant red stroller sitting outside of the Baby Brick. I asked Owen whether he remembered riding in it. Yes, he did. I was suspicious.

Me: Who pushed you?

Owen: (triumphantly) You did!

Me: No . . . Miss Sandi pushed you. Do you remember Miss Sandi?

Owen: (vague noises of assent)

Me: Do you remember Miss Carol?

Owen: Yes. Those two womans pushed me in the path.

Back at home, we played outside until Aunt Claire got there for dinner. I went inside to get cooking, leaving Claire with the kids. I suggested that Owen teach her to play T-ball. He took his duties very seriously. He explained that you have to hold the bat with two hands, and you hit the ball, not the T. He demonstrated. This is the child who spent all of yesterday knocking his T over with each hit and trying to get us to pick it up for him.

Claire proved a slow learner, trying to hit the ball with her elbow, her head, the small end of the bat. Owen worked hard to try to convince her of the correct technique.

Steve and I are pleased that Owen's very poor eating habits over the past week or so seem to have reversed: he ate his whole dinner and then conned us into making popcorn.

4/9/13 (Tuesday)

A very warm day today. I put Owen in a T-shirt! He is somewhat confused by T-shirts right now, he's been wearing long sleeves for so long. One difference is it's much harder to wipe your nose on your sleeve.

The kids were playing outside when I pulled up. Mommy had had to explain to Owen that mulch is not for walking in; nor, sadly, is it for sitting in. Cara got on her bike, and PJ and Casey got on their bikes, and Owen got on his trike for a tiny bit. He pushed himself over to the Loefflers', where we noticed that his diaper was very big and saggy, so I coaxed him back to the house with the promise of chili cheese Fritos (for some reason he likes them).

We went back out with a fresh diaper, but soon enough it was time to go in and have dinner. After he maybe ate a few things, what Owen wanted to watch was kitties: the Cats DVD that Cara got for her birthday. For some reason he likes it!

Mommy cleverly bought lighter pajamas for the children, including a nice Batman suit for Owen. "It has short sleeves!"

4/10/13 (Wednesday)

Owen has been having a spate of nighttime wake-ups, and Steve was thinking last night that perhaps it was because he was too hot. He suggested to Owen that perhaps he didn't need his heavy comforter on. However, Owen is very dedicated to his heavy comforter; he likes to sleep holding the corner of it. (There's a loose thread that seems to really interest him.) I'm pretty sure he woke up this morning still holding it--either that, or that's the first thing he looked for. This will get interesting when summer comes.

Today Owen wore the new Captain America shirtI got him yesterday. As we strolled to the car, I asked him about it.

Me: Who got it for you?

Owen: Daddy.

Me: Yes, Daddy put it on you, but who bought it?

Owen: Miss Melissa and Miss Mona.

Me: Really?

Owen: Yes, Miss Melissa and Miss Mona. They bought it at that store over there. No, that store over there. Then they got in their car and they drove it to my house. But they thought it was for Cara! But it was for me.

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