Monday, September 29, 2008

Climber, Beware!

Our stairs have a very tricky turn at the landing; two steps at the turn form the landing, and they are extra wide at one end and narrow at the other. So far, the steps have claimed four victims: My mother, my sister, me, and this past weekend--Rick. At least now he can't make fun of the women in my family for being clumsy--he's part of our exclusive group! The scary part is he was holding Sam when he fell. Fortunately, Sam just thought it was an extra-fun ride down the stairs. At first Rick thought he broke his big toe. After a while, we realized it might actually be his foot. Six hours later, I convinced Rick to let me take him and his club, I mean foot to the ER. Three hours and three x-rays later, the doctor came in with a grin and told us that, inexplicably, his misshapen foot had no fractures. There was a slight shadow on the bone right above his big toe, and she thought maybe his tendon had chipped a tiny piece of bone--the only way to find out is to wait a week and re-assess the foot for pain, swelling, etc.

In the meantime, we are erecting a caution sign for the stairway, and heretofore we, the Wilcox family, will not be liable for any falls or injuries incurred while participating in either ascending or descending aforementioned stairs: climb at your own risk.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Happy Birthday, Pepa!

Our Pepa (Grandpa Pete, get it? "Pete-pa") turns 54 today! You still look great for over half of a century old! We love and miss you. Enjoy your day. (Jack and I made your gift, but I was sick with a stomach bug earlier this week, and we didn't send it out in time. It's on its way!) Love you, Rick, Christi & boys.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Happy Birthday, Lucas!

Lucas, you're one! I think it's about time I told you a little story about the day you were born. I believe it was the beginning of our third week at your house (your mom had me worried that you'd be here "any day," so we hopped on a plane to be there as soon as possible). As I was saying, TWENTY ONE days after Jack and I arrived in Rochester, NY, your mommy's doctor decided you needed to come out, and boy were we glad (especially your mom). At almost the exact time you were born, your sister got sick all over Grandma. Now, don't worry. I don't think she vomited at the thought of you coming into her life--how could she have known? We were eating at Panera Bread while you were making your way out-- but I was a little suspicious at first that maybe, somehow, she knew her life would never be the same. Rest assured on this, your first birthday; Averi loves her little brother (we've seen the love first hand). In fact, I think you're her favorite toy. And you are our favorite one-year-old! Happy Birthday, Big Guy!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Playschool Update

Thanks, everyone, for asking about Jack and how playschool is going. The answer is GREAT! The first day of school, Jack looked at me in fear when he realized I was leaving. He let out a silent, little cry, but I just hugged him, told him to have a good morning, and I'd be back in a bit. My neighbor called me a few minutes later to tell me that she was dropping her daughter off (Katherine, middle in photo) at the classroom next door to Jack, and when she saw him he was not crying--just clinging to Ducky and looking a little scared. Good. Not a minute after I hung up the phone, my other neighbor called to say the exact same thing (her son, Noah, right in photo). That day--and every day since--at pick-up time, Jack jumps in the car with a huge smile, and I ask him, "Did you have fun?" And his response is an emphatic "YES!" Then, all the way home he tells me about the fun things he did with his teachers and classmates. To warm my heart even more, he jumps out of the car in the morning with the same gusto--smile on and spring in his step. Needless to say, Sam Cash and I are enjoying the one-on-one time, my house is a little--please hear my high-pitched voice and imagine that I'm almost touching my thumb to my index finger--little cleaner, and sometimes--again the high-pitch--sometimes, Momma gets a shower in the morning!

The Ghost at Southpark Mall

Can you help solve the mystery???

C'mon, play'll be bloggin' good fun, I promise! Let me give you the history of the ghost and how we found her:
Rick was looking through the newest posts on our blog last week, when he saw something peculiar, the more we looked at it--it wasn't peculiar--it was strange, and then after we analyzed it for a while, it became downright spooky. We actually had to leave the house to stop her from haunting us. Are you curious? Good. Now follow the directions carefully (it's more fun that way).
FIRST: Go back to the post about Uncle Randy & Aunt Stacey visiting (just scroll down a few inches), and LOOK at--don't touch!--the picture of them holding Jack & Sam. Don't read anymore until you've done that.

SECOND: Did you see any apparitions? If yes, you've got a good eye, and you found our ghost! If you didn't see her, go back and click on the picture (that will make it larger). Okay, stop reading, and do it!

THIRD: Surely, by now, you've found her just above Jack's left shoulder. Are you a little spooked? Rick and I kept coming up with explanations (and reasons they weren't viable)--maybe she was walking behind them, and the camera caught her (okay, but she's way out of proportion. They are leaning against one end of the fountain, and it's a good 15-20 feet wide); maybe the camera lens somehow caught her image and inserted it behind them (why is she black & white?). After several minutes of trying to explain the ghost away, we determined we had to find the answer. Why was this ghost haunting our son?

Mystery Solved. We packed up the boys and took a field trip back to the mall. We anxiously walked through the parking deck, down the southern wing of the mall to the center fountain area and then...we saw her! She is perhaps the spookiest looking model we've ever seen plastered onto a poster for David Yurman (a high-end designer). The advertisement is a close-up of her, and that explains why she's so out of proportion with everyone else in the picture. Rick and I looked at each other and laughed in relief. Hope you had fun--thanks for playing!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Get in my Belly!

After a slow start, Sam has finally become quite the food connoisseur. I'm not even really sure he tastes food's more like, well, inhalation. I can barely get the spoon to his mouth fast enough, and he's yelling for more. The nightmares of having to raise a picky eater have subsided. He likes food!
Really, after Jackson, it would've been difficult to deal with pickiness. It doesn't even matter what you offer Jack, just call it a "snack," and he'll accept it. In fact, it has become the joke among our little circle that within minutes of greeting any of his friends, he somehow ends up with a snack cup or bag that doesn't belong to him. The funny thing is, his friends just accept this. There's really not a struggle. The transaction happens quietly, and it usually takes me a few minutes to realize what has gone down and then attempt to fix it. I even have a friend that packs an extra snack for Jack in her diaper bag, and whenever we go anywhere with her, he eventually positions himself to fish it out--much to her delight and my chagrin.
Okay, I digress, this post is about Sam! A Jack-in-training! Now I sleep sans nightmares, a peaceful, dream-less sleep. Bon Apetit, Sam!

Uncle Randy & Aunt Stacey Visit!

We were so excited to have Uncle Randy and Aunt Stacey visit us for a whole weekend! Rick was out of town, so guess who was the most relieved, um, I mean excited? Uncle Randy and Aunt Stacey were so much fun! They read bedtime stories with Jack, and Aunt Stacey got to work on her upside-down reading. We went to Greek Fest, where Uncle Randy took Jack on his first-ever carnival ride, Jack and I got our hair painted bright orange, and we ate some yummy Greek food (unfortunately, the baklava sundae ended up on the sidewalk). We went to the mall and The Cheesecake Factory, and they got to experience dining with a toddler and an infant--too much fun! We all worked on an art project for our new "Wall of Art" in the playroom (in fact, Uncle Randy and Aunt Stacey worked long after Jack lost interest and wandered out of the room). Eventually, they had to leave us, but Jack continues to ask about them, which allows us to recount all the fun we had!

Sam vs. The Charlotte Observer

Sam's fat, little hands are fast! He gets them on everything--even things you're sure are out of his reach. Earlier this week, he got his first taste of ice cream, oh yes, ice cream. A fistful of pistachio mint ice cream was his reward for swatting repeatedly at my cone. And by the excited look on his eyes, he liked it! One morning, after redirecting his curious little paws from the paper several times, I finally gave up and thought this might be fun to watch...

The paper suffered some early defeats. Sam's victory wasn't all too sweet though (unlike the one at Baskin Robbins), because the paper--much like his infamous "time-out" elephant--was a frustrating nemesis, and when he did finally roll away, he did it with black, ink-stained fingers. Egged on by the crunching and morphing paper, Sam's temper got the best of him, and Sam vs. The Charlotte Observer ended in a draw--not even a moral victory for the little guy.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Patriots Point

While we were on vacation, Rick took Jack to Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum on the famous Yorktown aircraft carrier. They went Tuesday, the day after Labor day, and Rick said they almost had the ship to themselves. Jack was such a hit with the veteran volunteers, who were enjoying the relative calm after the holiday weekend, that they gave him a USS Yorktown poster. Somehow, he also made it back to our little beach villa with a plastic replica of the ship complete with tiny airplanes. I think maybe his dad had something to do with that!

Wild Dunes

On the Wednesday before Labor Day, Rick called me from work. "So, should we go to the beach, or what?" Ummm...yeah! Four days later, we packed up the car and headed to the Wild Dunes resort on Isle of Palms (just north of Charleston, SC).
I think we got out of the house around 11:30 Sunday morning, geared up for a 3 and 1/2 hour drive to the coast. The boys handled the ride fairly well--even though it only took about an hour for Jack to whine, "I'm tired. I need my bed." Which came out, I'm tiiii-yerd...I need my be-yed. Then, he insisted "I wanna go home, Mom." We reached the resort at a time when Jack would normally be getting up from his nap. Once we were in our room, I popped the little stinker in the pack-n-play, pulled the curtains, turned on a fan, and told him that we were going to have "quiet time." Within a minute, Jack opened the door of his bedroom and announced, "I awake," as I stared at him wide-eyed. What??? Why was my toddler out of his bed--the bed that was supposed to contain him, the bed that was supposed to be a substitute for his crib, the bed designed to keep my boy safe and out of mischief? Ohhhhh, this was going to be a long vacation, and not in a good way...
I saw the ocean from our balcony, and that's as close as I got that first night. Rick and Jack slept together in the "big boy" bed, and the pack-n-play went unused.
Monday came, and despite Jack's repeated requests to go home, we were determined to stay AND have fun. Sam was my little bright spot; he kept his schedule without missing a beat, despite cutting two teeth. Eventually, I made it to the ocean, and Jack slept in his pack-n-play. Over the next couple of days, Jack and I collected sea shells, all four of us went for a bike ride, and Jack and Rick went alligator-spotting. We enjoyed the pool (especially after Monday morning when we were one of few families left on the resort), and Rick took Jack to Patriot's Point one morning while Sam and I got some exercise with the jogging stroller.
When we prepared to leave, Jack inquired, "Go to the beach, Mom?" and continued asking all the way home. Will there ever be a day when we please him? Maybe next year.