Sunday, September 29, 2013

Got Rain???

Okay Peeps. It is only September 29th, and thus far we have had 10 rainy days, (yes sometimes just showers, though some times outright torrential DOWNPOUR) out of the last 14. It seems like just 2 weeks ago, (actually yes, it was actually just two weeks ago!) that I was moaning and groaning about 100+ temps and...sigh..."the river, AGAIN, with my two boys? Oh okay...;-)"
What a crazy weather change we have had! It's not cold, but rainy, oh yes. In a matter of days it has gone from summer time, no clothes, river, too hot to sleep, etc to "what the heck do I do with two crazy boys all day inside!!!"
And then my inner Katie kicks in and says..."Why are you inside, silly, OUTSIDE!!! Get them OUTSIDE!!! Grab snacks, just GO!!!"
So we do.
Even amidst better judgement, looming crazy downpours on the radar of our weather geekdom website, and the boys literally at each others throats...(which is the main reason to get them OUTSIDE!!! right?)
And fun we had.

No fish caught.
Lots of bananas, veggie chips, and chocolate chip cookies consumed, and very wet bodies at the end, but totally worth it. To be totally honest we were probably only down there for an hour and a half, and the kids were not exactly totally into it all. But, I KNOW it was good for them and us to get out of the house! Forrest even managed to spool out his own plug in the water under his fish guru father's watchful eye...all by himself.
Chocolate chip cookie face

Proud of his fishing pole, waiting for those steelhead!

Water blot and all, a fishy family

Wet hike back up
But, really now. This is all great when temps are still in the 60's with the rain and the days are semi long, but I seriously am going to need ideas on how to keep myself from going crazy this winter. YES the boys' rooms are going to be done before long, (I hope I hope!) so that will be wonderful and give us all some much needed space, but, we're still going to need some new activities.
I plan to make a Michael's trip to restock our craft supply....but with boys, or at least my two boys this only lasts so long. It makes a huge mess which I'm willing to make, but for 20 minutes, tops?  Other rainy ideas we already have are mid day baths...this can take hours of time :-) Big floor puzzles, I only have one but more might come in handy. Baking adventures... Forts....etc. But what about fun games? And I think I want to hit post Halloween costume sales as the kids LOVE to dress up these days.  We have movies, I just really try to limit them with Forrest as he's always a bit nuts afterwards. He earns them, but I feel those are parental freebies.

So friends, any grand ideas out there for this family of boys in the woods?

I'm all ears!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

"Look at Me!!!"

 This little 2 year 4 month old...T-Baby as I used to, and still perhaps, call him, is SUCH a cutie these days. He is the definition of cute, if I do say so myself. He does not always fill this role, as just as recently as 4 weeks ago he seemed to be in the full fledged "terrible two's", as well as the "No more sleep for me" stage, and the "Lets get all of my two year old molars at once" stage. Or, who really knows, but I wasn't calling him cute then. Although he does still seem so much cuter and baby like than Forrest at this age, he really is growing up. Okay, so yes, he still uses his pacifier for sleeping, still is in diapers, (though at least is telling us now when he pees and poops...a start!), and still sleeps in a pack N play by our bed, (more so because the boys rooms are not ready yet than anything else though...) But other than these points, he is absolutely in little boy mode. He loves stuffed animals more than Forrest ever did, likes to pretend he is a puppy dog and crawl around on the floor, and still likes his cuddles and loves, even if just now for a few seconds, or during his grouchy after nap spells.
Lately though, his words have exploded. He has been our little parrot for awhile, but now the language is just bursting out at the seams.
He has been called a Mama's Boy, but after spending 9 days with Dad while Mom and Forrest were out in Boston, I would argue with that!
He did wonderful with Alex, and got to fish, (of course,) and be more of a Big Boy than usual, without his Forrest around.

He LOVES books, primarily his favorite 5 tractor books, and would request you read them to him no less than 30 times a day if we let him. He also can tell you just about every sort of specific tractor and truck that you could have ever thought existed. I'm lucky in this regard as it makes our hour long commutes on the high way so much more eventful when you are guaranteed to pass multiple logging trucks and dozens of bulldozers and tractors that are always present.
His favorite three words lately..."Look at Meeeeee!" said in the cutest little voice imaginable. And then he'll show you the silly goggles he is wearing, the little jig or jump he is trying, or just to gain attention from his big brother.
And oh, Brothers. They can be SO incredibly adorable. Hands down, my best, heart melting, parenting moments are when these two boys are being so incredibly sweet, imaginative, and smart in their play together. They are fantastic, racing around in their super hero costumes, pretending to be skeletons, Wild Kratt brothers, or playing some version of floor hockey with blocks, kitchen spatulas, and laundry baskets, (just this morning, where do they get these ideas???Have they EVER seen hockey? NOOO! Crazy!)
But they can be devilish. Mainly the eldest Fulton boy.
But little T Boy has a brain on him, we are finding out quickly.
Today Forrest was hogging the box of grapes from our neighbor. Talin asked him for some, without "Please". We advised him to add "please" to try to gain coveted grapes. He did, saying, "Please share my grapes ist...." ("Ist = Forrest, for now :-)
Despite his nice words, Big Brother was not sharing. Alex and I were both telling Forrest he really should share when Talin had his own idea. He saw Forrest's blankie laying on the floor, went over and grabbed it, silently as could be, and just stood there cuddling with it until Forrest saw him. Forrest of course, abruptly left his grape post and dashed to Talin, demanding his blanket---no please of course. While Forrest was preoccupied, Talin then scampered back to the grape box, making Forrest FURIOUS, and his parents amazed. Alex and I both cracked up. Talin is already learning to outsmart his big brother.
Yes it is always eventful with the two Fulton brothers in the house! But they really are ying and yang, in an adorable little boy, crazy energy type of way. And we are so excited to keep seeing what type of little personality Talin will continue to show us.

Recovering from "Feeling under the weather...."

Today was a good day. Yesterday, and the day before, were not. I was under the weather with some kind of cruel crud, probably a product of six different planes to and fro the beautiful city of Boston...or perhaps a vicious and never welcome present from one of my poor patients. Regardless, I'd been feeling coughy and crappy all week...but thanks to Vitamin I and cough drops had been charging through...and Friday....THUD! I fell hard. The rain fell harder. We were under the deluge of the crazy September storm, trying to make up from the super hot dry summer we had, all in one waterfall. To add further contrast to the day, it was our 5 year wedding anniversary. Which no one had any energy to even try to plan or address. All I can say is it gave new meaning to "...In sickness and in health....;-)"
Pneumonia? Crazy transatlantic killer bug? It had me phoning a friend way up here in our little house in the big woods on Saturday morning for what has seemed to be the life saving Z-pack. I'm not an antibiotic lover. I mean, I use them judiciously with myself, perhaps a bit more graciously with my patients, and having been through no less than 30 little kid viruses can't really remember the last time I choked them down. But today I'm loving them. Feeling that death like fatigue, body aches that make you feel like you just ran a marathon, chills and fever, crappy cough, and lungs that feel like you are breathing out of a straw are great ways to really put you back in your place. Very humbling. The great spirits telling me "YOU CRAZY WOMAN! YOU FLY YOURSELF AND YOUR 4 YEAR OLD ACROSS THE COUNTRY AND BACK, ALL THE WHILE ATTENDING 40 HOURS OF CONFERENCE IN 4 DAYS, ATTENDING A WEDDING WITHIN 30 MINUTES OF STEPPING OFF THE PLANE AT THE END OF YOUR TRIP, THEN GO STRAIGHT TO AN EXTRA LONG WEEK OF WORK WITH TOO MUCH OVERTIME!!!!"
Okay, point well said spirits.
So I rested.
I was forced to rest.
I think I slept 24 hours in the 36 hours between Friday night and Sunday morning. My body told me I didn't have a choice. And I recovered! And today I feel the life again.
Good Bye Killer Bug, Hello FALL!!!!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

First trip to the water park-early August

So excited at my spur of the moment decision to stop at the local Redding Water Park they offered to carry my bag...such good brothers!

You can't have a sunny day with pool play without ice cream, right?

Trip number 45 of 321 down the slides for Forrest!

Floating down the lazy river...isn't the Trinity but still loads of fun for this 4 year old!
By the end, Talin had a grand time climbing on all the rocks OUTSIDE the water and I couldn't get Forrest off the slides for the life of me without the bribe of a Starbucks treat. Needless to say I had two tired nappers for the 2 hour ride home.

Monterey Bay Aquarium and time with the Great Grandparents....

I think it's about time to finish up my California Coast trip as now I'm in Massachusettes on another trip with Forrest... Busy month, whew!
Monterey Bay Aquarium was a lot of fun with my two little boys.... And a LOT of work tackling this adventure solo. The kids were always wanting to go in separate directions and I personally consider it a successful trip that I didn't loose either one of the boys! We had two day tickets which was nice after a day of little sleep.... No pressure to stay till closing as I knew we could come back the next morning fresh and ready to go. We found a good hotel just 3-4 blocks from the aquarium and had fun walking down downtown Monterey. Looking forward to more trips here with Alex in the future! (Sorry for the dates on the pictures...Forrest has "borrowed" my phone I think, can't figure out how to get it off...)
Lots of fun for these boys with the huge awesome aquariums

The seahorse and jelly fish exhibit were great on day 2

happy boys!
 Monterey also has the BEST park I have ever seen. Dennis the Menace Park was right up our alley for a quick...lets get these kids TIRED out before a long car ride....trip!

Talin loved the Dennis statue at the park enterance

Amazing! And this was only half of it!

Forrest and Talin loving this cool super length rolling slide complete with a stair arch
After our fun filled Monterey time, I took the senic route down to Morro Bay to visit my wonderful Grandparents. The kids slept through the first 3/4 of the drive. It was absolutely gorgeous!

Awesome Big Sur Bridge

Forrest at Ragged Point

Next up was fun times and dinner with Great Grandpa and Great Grandma! We are so incredibly lucky to have two amazing Great Grandparents in our kids lives. Morro Bay was beautiful, and we were able to cook up a salmon/garden feast from our home garden. It was such a special and memorable time....Playing with trucks and cars on the floor and rigging up dune buggies with trailers with Grandpa and walking to the playground with Grandma. Very special!!!
Little Boys and their Great Grandpa

Talin enjoyed walking to the play ground JUST like his Great Grandma Sheila

Forrest chose the FAVORITE cup, the icecream cup for his fav as a kid too!

Talin and Grandma share some snuggles

Silly boys on the beach with Morro Rock in the background

Monday, September 2, 2013

A great dinner with Tammy and Alethea....

 Saturday night in Santa Barbara, the boys and I were lucky enough to have dinner and a great evening with these two very special people and their families...Tammy and Alethea! More rowing friends to make my August month of visits with some of my great friends from the UCSB days complete! This was so amazing, and I'm only sorry we didn't capture the three of us better, but, alas, the sky was ablaze with a terrific sunset and those memories will be with us forever, even if the picture didn't come out great :-) Tammy and her family have a fabulous house complete with a pool and jacuzzi, as well as tons of little boy toys Forrest and Talin just thought were the COOLEST! Alethea and her husband joined us for a great dinner of snacks, pizza, and other treats as we caught up and let our 4 (FOUR!!!!) little boys, age 12 mos to 4 years 5 months rage and play and enjoy each-others crazy but cute boy energy.
Forrest checking out the great SB pool view! He had such a great time! Forrest and Graham had their first real swimming race this evening!
"Auntie" Alethea and cutie Carter playing together

Two very lucky boys snacking on delicious cookies made by Alethea!

The two little's of the group, Carter, and Talin, bond for some floor play!

Group shot! Tensions were high here as the kids were a bit nuts, an extra request from Graham to have "Aunt" Megan in the picture made the shot!
These meetups with awesome people I love to call friends really are moments I'll treasure forever. So much has changed, but there is also so much that we still share in common, (like these 4 little boys!) Thank you so much Tammy and Alethea for a wonderful evening...:-)