24 October 2016

Fall Happenings

In the last two years my blogging has dwindled to only highlight birthdays and vacations. I'd love to make promises about more devoted writing time or more frequent postings, but I have no intention of doing either.

Here are a few pictures and blurbs about what we've been up to this fall, though.

On Eric's birthday we hiked to Donut Falls. It was a nice hike for our little family. Afterwards we went to an Indian restaurant. And we both were so happy that we can take our kids to actual restaurants to eat actual food without having to deal with them acting like horrible people.

I coached Ike's soccer team this year. My brother aptly calls soccer for this age group "Swarm Ball." It was a neat experience, and I'll probably do it again at some point. I loved spending extra time with Ike. I sometimes felt annoyed with parents who shouted at their kids opposite instructions of what I was giving them, or who wanted to give me pointers on coaching. Folks, I have never played soccer except in elementary school P.E. I only signed up to coach because I got a few emails saying our team still really needed an assistant coach. If all you other parents think you can do a better job, then by all means, please do. Otherwise, the appropriate thing to do is say, "Thanks for coaching this soccer team." Also, I think there was an attitude of, "Oh, I'm too busy to coach." Which, okay, I get it. But who isn't busy? We're all busy. It's the American thing to be doing too many things. If it were just the kids, I'd be all about doing this more often.

At this age level the teams do not play with referees, instead the coaches and parents referee the game. We don't really call handballs unless the kid straight-up picks up the ball with his/her hands, and we don't keep score (officially). I loved it when my fellow ref (usually a coach, but sometimes a parent) had the same attitude about this whole thing that I had. (My attitude was, "This is a game, and my kid is five.") Those games were the most fun for me. I never once reffed with another female. Some men treated me like I was stupid. These games were the least fun for me.

Sometimes this boy was constantly in the action, but as the season wore on he was more likely to hang out of the swarm and see if he could head off an opponent who had taken off with the ball.

It looks like I'm chewing this kid out, but I promise I'm not. His parents had come down hard on him during half time, and he came back very upset. I was telling him that he was doing a great job. (He was one of our better players, and one of my favorite kids.) About three minutes after this was taken, he got nailed in the face with a soccer ball and hardly shed a tear.

Being around Ike and watching him interact with a bunch of boys his age was such a fun experience. I really do love this little boy, and I'm glad we got to do this together. I'm also pleased to report that even if I had not been his coach, I think my boy would have been one of the better behaved and least annoying children on the team. And I'm grateful for that. I feel bad for the parents with annoying kids. (Not even going to try to pussyfoot around that. There were definitely some obnoxious kids on my team.)

We didn't manage to get a big group together for our annual Pumpkin Cruise down by the ropes course on the Provo River. Instead, we hired a sitter for Trixie and just took the boys. We didn't bother with jack-o-lanterns for our boat and just went on our own. There was a big logjam, and we had to portage around that. Felix found that experience really distressing for some reason and kept insisting that we just turn around and go home. But everyone really loved the lights. This was one of those rare occasions when Eric didn't want to do something, and I had to encourage him that it would be worth it. When it was all over he agreed and was glad we got it together to go.
Also, how long until my boys are bigger and stronger than me, and they can be the ones to help Eric with carrying the canoe to the river and getting it on and off the car?

17 October 2016

Felix is Four

I'm more than a week late, but Felix is four now! His birthday celebrations were numerous. On the day of his actual birthday I let him pick a treat to have with our dinner that night. He picked cinnamon rolls. We also had turnips because he requested them. The next night we had a picnic dinner at the Ashton Gardens (formerly the Thanksgiving Point Gardens). Saturday he had a birthday party with friends, and I made cupcakes for everyone. Sunday we had Grandma and Grandpa L., Grandma Great, and my nephew Tyson over for dinner. And we wrapped it up with pineapple up-side-down cake. Then, on Tuesday night we went to Cold Stone for birthday ice cream. Which is all to say, this kid had plenty of treats for his birthday.

A few of Felix's favorites:

  • Colors: blue and red
  • Foods: Pretty much everything. He's a delightful eater. But if you ask him, he might say cabbage.
  • Activities: playing with friends, watching movies and shows, playing with his cars, going on walks at the gardens
  • Movie: probably Planes: Fire and Rescue (I know, ugh, but it's better than Cars, which I absolutely despise.)
  • Show: Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood or Wild Kratts
  • Songs: "Praise to the Man," "Eye of the Tiger," "Slave March," "Mighty Lord and King All Glorious," and many other Primary songs and instrumental pieces from various movies, especially Star Wars
  • When he grows up: Wants to be whatever Ike is. "But what if Ike is just a bum? "What's a bum?" "A bum is just somebody who doesn't have a job and does nothing all day." "Well, if Ike is a bum, then I guess I will just have to be a bum too." Alternatively, he has told me he wants to work at the the gardens so he can be one of the workers that is allowed to go in the employees-only sections. And he has told me he is going to be a flower cutter so he can cut flowers and bring them in the house for me.
Special traits:
  • He's quite sensitive.
  • He's brave, even if he's scared of something.
  • He has a good memory for learning texts and lyrics. (But he skips #15 when counting 99% of the time.)
  • He will always share food with you if you ask, even if it's his last bite of a special treat.
Other stuff about him at age four:
  • He's scared of strangers and is trying to understand when to be cautious and when there is cause for alarm. (The other day he came in from playing because there were strangers outside. I asked him if they were walking, and he said, "No, they drove by in a car.")
  • He would go to preschool every day if he could.
  • He almost never cooks with me anymore, far preferring to play with friends. (This makes me insanely sad.) But he does come around begging for food a lot.
And here are a few blurry pictures (and also evidence of why I will never be a famous blogger):

Sometimes Felix can be really ornery, but mostly he's a sweet boy who can be persuaded to do pretty much anything. He brings our family a lot of happiness. He asks great questions, and when his apologies are sincere, they are just insanely sweet. I sure do love him.