Sunday, September 30, 2007


Every time we walk around the neighborhood these days, the boys are completely fascinated by the squirrels they see. Bastian just loves them because they're animals and he thinks he can chase them down and pet them or something. Aleks, though, talks about how they're digging up the nuts they've buried and how only squirrels eat acorns. I think he learned that from Over the Hedge, of all places.

Suspecting squirrel suspects something.
Bastian attempts bringing his reign of terror.
High-speed squirrel chase ensues.

Then the boys get super nutty. The walk to the park 8 houses away takes twenty minutes because we have to collect buckeyes. We talk about the outside fruit and how it dries and then the nuts come out, bury in the earth and grow in the spring, except that the lawns are well-manicured and all the saplings get mowed down.
Aleks smashes open the prickly outside fruit that's dried.
He gets a double buckeye.
Bastian stashes buckeyes in his pocket for later. That night, forgetting that they're there, I wash four buckeyes, an acorn, and half a Lego alien with the ketchup-laden sheets (eating fake chicken on my bed while watching a movie on the laptop is a horrible idea).

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Coventry Puppet Theatre

On a walk to the video store, we see a man with a giant puppet performing on a bench outside Tommy's. We watch for a minute, then Aleks poses with him and drops a dollar in the open suitcase.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Breakfast Smoothies in the Nude

Bastian and I made raw kale, fruit and yogurt smoothies this morning for breakfast. Bastian chose to be naked while doing so, as 2-year-olds are so often prone to do.
He also ate some of the blueberries.
Here's what all we put in them:
1/2 cup yogurt (today we used cherry flavored soy yogurt, but I prefer to use plain whole milk yogurt and add a touch of honey for sweetness, as flavored yogurts have more sugar than ice cream)
2 tablespoons flax oil
1 teaspoon acidophilus powder (overkill, I know, since the yogurt has live cultures already)
1 leaf raw kale
splash of soy, almond, cow, or hemp milk to help liquefy, if necessary
frozen fruit (mango, peach, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries - whatever we can find in as high or low a quantity as desired)
1 fresh banana

Monday, September 24, 2007

Small Children in Restaurants

Aleks draws somewhat quietly while waiting for our friend, Heather, at our favorite local restaurant.Bastian cries.

Late-Night Artwork

Lately, Aleks hasn't been going to sleep well. At about midnight, he takes out all his paper and crayons and stickers and scissors and tape and makes a monkey. He holds up the monkey, before hanging it on the dining room wall with a bit of tape. Though its head is tiny, it has arms with fingers, long legs with toes, and a tail.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Science Experiment

Aleks and his friend, Jonas, experiment with momentum and torque by spinning bicycle pedals. They also learned how the bicycle's breaks work, taking turns pressing the break handles. Both their siblings got in on it too. No one was hurt...too badly.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Canoe Trip

Aleks, Papa, and Grandpa Jim went on a Sunday afternoon canoe trip. Jim scouted a lake he'd never canoed before early in the day, then they packed the canoe in the pickup truck and enjoyed the (briefly lived) cool but sunny fall weather. Aleks with Papa's oar. The red canoe on the dock.
Aleks gazes over the lake. There were lots of fish swimming about. Papa struck one with his oar accidentally, making it jump above the water. Hopefully it didn't sustain a concussion. Despite being a vegetarian and never having tasted fish in his life, Aleks stuck his arm in trying to catch fish with his bare hand. He would really like to fish with sticks and strings some day.
Grandpa Jim and Aleks with a stick.

Sunday at the Farm

Bastian and Grandma Cat venture to the field, filled with fall goldenrod.
They check for snakes under the deer feeder, but none were found. Grandma thought perhaps they were hibernating already.Bastian goes in to the goldenrod. Can you see him in there?
Grandma goes in after him, rescuing him from poison ivy!
Aleks, geared up for his canoe trip later in the afternoon.
We spy some bugs in the grass. A grasshopper:
And a dragonfly (in the foreground, blurry). Grandma Cat collects Bastian who'd run after Bootsie the dog far into the field.
Aleks (vaguely) points towards the pumpkins he and Grandpa Jim found in the garden. They were planted especially for Aleks to carve at Halloween.
The day previously, they'd counted 7, but Grandpa found this one camouflaged by being all green. Aleks noticed that there was a chunk missing (yellow spot on the right), deducing that something had taken a bite out of it.
Here's a nice big orange one, which we took home.
And another still partially green.
And several others in varying stages of turning orange.
Aleks had a nice little lineup of veggies he'd picked. He has an absolute knack for spotting red tomatoes and ripe cucumbers.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Lawn Lounge

Mama and Aleks take a nap in the sunny yard at Grandma & Grandpa's house. Soaking up the sun seems the best way to stay warm on the briskest day yet.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Toilet Time

Bastian's potty learning. I'm sure he'll hate me for this post later on. He began abruptly self-training about 2 weeks ago and now spends most days in underwear.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Autumn Day at the Park

On the first real fall day, we go for a picnic to a local park.
The boys play with sticks.
Bastian goes down all the slides on his belly, for fear of flying off.
Aleks talks to whoever will listen, showing off his Lego catalog and learning bad habits from the school kids.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Sound Memory Game

Following instructions found at Z Recommends, we created a small version of the Sound Memory Game. It's like your basic Memory Game:

We have about a thousand of these restaurant cups with lids, which seemed easier than paper cups and cutting out paper lids, and besides, it's re-use, diy style:

We found different objects to make different sounds and placed them in the cups. We used pennies, popcorn, salt, and acorns.

We got out our stickers to signify matches:

Then we had a necessary intermission of fighting with Lego guys:

Then we sealed them all up, placing tape over the straw holes.

Then Aleks shook 'em! He listened carefully to find the sound matches.

Then the game naturally devolved into taking turns throwing the cups around, knocking them over, throwing them across the room, chasing each other, and all the wild fun that can be expected at our house.

Witness child zooming past: