Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Little things

This post is a foster home of sorts for all those pictures on my phone and camera that just can't seem to find a home of their own. You know I like my posts to be all packaged up nicely, but I've grown to appreciate looking back at the small reminders that our daily lives do consist of more than just playing candy crush and counting down the minutes to bedtime. Letting Kylie skip school so we can bake pumpkin bread while singing along to Imagine Dragons. Walking home from school on warm days and listening as they rattle off the day's events. Little arms wrapped tightly around my neck when they climb into our bed after having a bad dream. Maddox telling me that he likes the dinner because I made it with love. Kitchen chairs that double as a choo choo train. Kylie painting my nails. Jayden building a block tower for Ryder. Digging in the garden for dinosaur bones and teeth. You know, life's a beach and all these little moments right here are the grains of sand.

We spent hours creating a chalk city that covered the entire drive. Beaches, football stadiums, fire stations, farms and mansions for everyone. Then they spent days driving little cars all around the roads. Just wondering why we've never done this before.

At any given time you will find Ryder with his blanket in one hand and a car in the other. And if we're outside he'll most definitely be wearing his yellow boots as well. Boys are kind of fun that way.

Kylie went to her first school dance. The boys stayed on one side of the gym and the girls stayed on the other. The music was too loud. She bought a soda and lollies. They danced to Justin Bieber. And that's all the details I got out of her. She is loving school, her teacher is awesome and hilarious and they have weekly yoga classes and friday karaoke, so pretty much I wish I was still in school too. She has become quite the expert at back massages lately. She gave us a business proposition where she gives Jason and I each a 5 minute back rub every night in exchange for $2 a week to spend at the school canteen. It's the best $2 we've ever spent.

Jayden just got back from school camp today. I missed him and worried about him, but he had a great time and I'm glad he got to experience a little independence. They played spotlight, cooked tinfoil potatoes on the beach, built a huge bonfire, learned all about the Maori culture and the boy he slept next to snored all night. It's good to have him home, I don't like having an empty seat at the dinner table and I missed him walking around all day singing Magic's "Rude", and I missed him asking me every morning if his voice is deeper or if I can see any facial hair. They had the growth and development talk at school and it was waaaay more in depth than I think was appropriate for 9 year olds, some of the questions he asks makes Kylie cover her ears and run out of the room screaming. But at least he's asking questions. And he's convinced he's going to be some child phenom and become the youngest boy to ever go through puberty. Always a competition with this one. His current goal in life is to get a six pack.

Every once in a while I get a hankering for rootbeer floats and it's an itch I just can't scratch. Until now. Jason and Kylie stumbled across some A&W at a Chinese store, of all places. I was so excited and it didn't matter that all we had was mint chocolate chip ice cream, it still hit the spot.

Kylie was so excited to finally start up dancing again. I keep meaning to do a photo shoot and a proper post about it, but I keep forgetting. We signed her up for a ballet class and after a few weeks her teacher told her that she needed to talk to me. She was convinced that she was going to have her move down a class since she's never focused exclusively on ballet and she felt like she was struggling. Instead she had seen so much potential in Kylie and wanted to offer her a scholarship to take 3 additional classes at no cost. What an incredible opportunity. The teacher is fabulous, she knows what she's doing and is quite strict about the girls doing each exercise properly. It has been a really good learning opportunity for Kylie. Ballet is a very disciplined art form, it's not as fun as choreographing dances to Katy Perry like before. Many times she has come home in tears and sworn off ballet for the rest of her life. On more than one occasion I've threatened to drag her in her pajama's to her 2 1/2 hr saturday morning class, but she is really starting to improve and is actually enjoying it. Instead of taking the critiquing so personally she is realizing that her teacher is only trying to help her to reach her full potential. It's hard to see her struggle, but I love when they face hard things and come out a little stronger on the other side.

I love having a little shadow. He has become super attached lately, like I can't leave the house even if Jason is home, and nursery is so far out of the question it's not even on the drawing board. But it feels good to be needed and loved and it doesn't hurt when I comment on a tree being pretty and he says "pretty like you mom!" I don't know if either one of us will be ready for him to start kindy in a couple of months, but until then we're enjoying our little one on one time together. We both still love his weekly play group, I mean when you get to use real power tools what's not to love?

This was from the Bansky exhibit at the Canterbury museum.

He loves playing kick ball (hands down, best $6 investment), and thinks it's a riot when he sits on the ball and I kick it out from under him. And he still picks his clothes every morning. Always shorts, no matter the weather. And he makes me cut the tags off every single shirt. And he wants to put his pajamas on every day after lunch.

He has a few little friends and I love seeing him start to navigate the social world. When he was leaving church one day he patted a little boy on his head and said, "good bye sweetheart!". He has a friend, Christian, that he lovingly refers to as "my Christian". We love getting together at the park with them and I wish I would have snapped a picture of them together today, but instead all I captured was the love child of Satan and Donald Duck. I still have nightmares of this duck chasing us with his evil hiss.

The last few Saturdays we've gone to a different park and I've played with the little guys while Jason plays football and kick ball with the older ones. I don't know, it's just been something I wanted to remember.

Maddox's class had a teddy bear picnic. Maddox was thrilled to bring his beloved teddy to school and even more thrilled that we could join them. Isn't this age just the best? I mean, he shows up for family movie night wearing a pair of sunglasses he found at the beach with one lens popped out, his king crown and super NaNa cape, then insists on making a bed next to him for all of his stuffed animals. These years are just golden. Oh, and a girl kissed him at school.

I took Kylie running with me one morning and we stopped at a cafe for smoothies. Not only can she hold her own at running, but she makes me laugh by using the number placard to dry out her sweaty armpits. She's a good egg, that one.

Ryder still has a love affair with swings. If he's not demanding underdogs then he's flying like super RyRy.

And lastly, this is one of my favorite streets. It's on one of my running routes. It's just so dreamy. And that's a good note to end on.


Ali said...

Hello there, you down there,

Your post is lovely. I'm sold on the style of parenting that does this "Letting Kylie skip school so we can bake pumpkin bread while singing along to Imagination Dragons."... !!

And that street you love running down reminds me of many streets where I grew up in Melbourne. Good on you for finding the time to run with such a busy group of kids!!

Thanks for sharing your life in a way that reminds your reader to look for the small details and enjoy them best of all.


Tyson and Dawn Jolley said...

Great post! I like seeing the odds and ends of your kiwi life. I hope you frame that little toes in chalk picture for your house somewhere, it is just so cute! Ok, they're all cute! everyone is growing up so fast! I don't want Jayden to have a man's voice yet! And Kylie looks so cute in her ballet class. And there isn't much to say about those two perfect littles of yours besides that I can't wait to steal them and have them live with me for a little bit!

Janessa said...

I love reading about all of the amazing places you visit, but it's the little day to day things that really make me feel connected to you. Those sidewalk chalk pics are so cute! Love those little toes and the yellow boots are killing me! Such a great idea to make a chalk town. I'll have to steal that one! Kylie is just growing up into such a sweet and beautiful young lady. Sounds like a fun little dance and I'm so impressed with her ballet talents! That is so awesome that she got that scholarship even. She is so talented! Way to go with the running too. I'll bet it's fun to have a new running partner. You're such a great mom! Jayden is cracking me up! Taylor did the exact same thing for years, "Mom, does my voice sound deeper?", "Look at all this hair on my legs, arms, face (or whatever it may be)". Boys will be boys that grown into men. Glad he had a fun time on his camp out and made it back safely! That little Ryder is killing me! What a fun little buddy to hang out with. Glad you're enjoying your time with him. That duck is creepy. I love your Saturdays at the park. You're do good to get out and play with your kiddos. I need to do more of that! Thanks for the inspiration. Oh, and that little Maddox. He is just a heart melter in every way. I can totally picture him all decked out for family movie night. He's a gem!

Jodee said...

Oh Ballet. The love hate relationship with ballet yet they can never seem to get away from it. I SO sympathize with you on that one. I love all these adorable pictures of your amazing kids and the beautiful scenery around you.