Oh Payson

I remember when Payson was a baby I wrote a post about him and titled it Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
I reposted it today.

Almost two years later and I still think of Payson as a Jekyll and Hyde sort.

He is the whiniest, clingiest, most destructive, annoying little toddler to ever walk the Earth.

But he is also the cutest, funniest, silliest, most creative, bringer of joy to ever walk the Earth, too!


And I don’t make the Jekyll-Hyde comparison lightly, he is up or down, hot or cold, ornery or lovely.

Black and white only here; it is never gray, it is always one or the other.

It’s really quite amusing when it’s not utterly exhausting.

Just What We Needed

Brooklyn called us into her room last night sometime between 9 and 10. There was puke all over her, her bed, and the floor. My heart sank as my own stomach threatened to heave.

Thank goodness Allan cleaned up her room while I gave her a bath.

Just doing the laundry from all of it was twisting my stomach severely.
And though I have to cancel my OBGYN appointment for today last minute (which I hate) I’m thankful she only threw up once more last night and it all made it into the garbage bag. And despite waking up about a million other times to her moaning in her sleep, it was an ok night.

I really hope no one else gets it. I can’t handle Sierra or Payson sick, they’re screamers when they’re feeling ill.

I Will Sketch a Flower

Little girls and flowers. Has there ever been anything sweeter, cuter, or more lovely to watch?

Since Brooklyn was old enough to look at the world around her she’s been enamored with flowers.

At first, eating them.

As she grew, picking them.

She grew a little more and it was smelling them.

And now at the age of 6, it’s drawing them.
Though we really can’t leave out smelling and picking them since that is also a regular occurence!

Sierra is much the same in every way when it comes to flowers.

With spring fully underway here in Arizona, today we searched for all of our books about flowers, we packed up paper and crayons and headed to the arboretum for some flower drawing.

We left nice and early so that the weather would be reasonable. It was 68 as we drove. High 60s and bright sun. Nice!

I was surprised by how quickly they got into their artwork. I honestly expected the coloring to be last on their mind since they’re usually running around the entire time we’re there.

But that wasn’t the case at all. They started coloring and didn’t stop until they’d filled their pages with color.





Payson during this time?

Oh you know, walking around. Dumping out crayons. Stealing the girls’ purses. Trying to walk through the flowers. Typical toddler stuff.


He caught sight of this thing and spent the rest of the time over there.
“Ball, ball! Moon, moon!” (Moon means balloon)

Once home with our goodies (lots of flowers and leaves, not picked from the arboretum) we sat down for some more flower learning.

We redid our bean experiment since doing it in jars was a total flop.

The girls did flower and leaf rubbings and lots of other crafts while I read books about flowers and plants to them.

Some of the stuff they did.



Payson during this? Making a mess, of course.

Their Current Favorites

I already mentioned Sierra’s current favorite poem:

So here is a second favorite:

And Brooklyn’s favorite:
We read these every day (along with many more) and they laugh and laugh.

And this isn’t my favorite poem, but one I found in my journal today and am loving again:

Little Girl Skipping
~Richard Armour

I say, and may be thought absurd,
A little girl is partly bird.

You say, she has no wing or feather?
I say, behold the dancing leather
of shoes upon her skipping feet.
How seldom sole and sidewalk meet.

You say, she is earthly bound,
Unable to get off the ground?
I only said- recall the word-
A little girl is partly bird.

And if she cannot soar the skies,
she has the urge and tries and tries.

Random Friday Shots

I’m just going to throw a few pictures up here.

Allan after work.

I took all the mirrored doors off my kids’ closets (I hate mirrored doors) and bought nice curtain rods and curtains quite a while ago and have yet to put them up. Maybe posting this will give me the kick in the pants to finally install them?

Now that I’m past the yucky first trimester I’m back to cooking every meal from scratch (mostly) and I’d forgotten how fast the dishes pile up! I feel like I spend half my life in the kitchen cooking and doing dishes.

And family movie night is tonight. The girls wanted Alvin and the Chipmunks… the cartoon version.
And we were out of popcorn so we had donuts while watching. Mmm.

Quick Post

In my head I have a plan of posting daily, but it never seems to happen. I really should just do a photo a day on days where I’m too busy to blog.

I’ll try to blog again later today during the kids’ quiet time. If we get around to having quiet time that is!

So Long Winter

As May approaches there is constant talk of lake trips, camping, swimming and sprinklers. I can hardly believe summer is almost here. I will really miss this beautiful Arizona winter.

We bought swimsuits during a JCPenney 50% off sale and the girls have been begging to buy a baby pool ever since. And that is why today we found ourselves at good old WalMart (Target is much further away) happily browsing the summer aisle.

Oh the frisbees, the squirt guns, the goggles, the sunscreen.

I am ready to face this summer, with all the torturous 100+ degree weather that comes with it!
Sierra asked to push the cart around the store and did a good job of it. She was also doing her very Sierra thing and reciting her favorite poem as we shopped… (if it’s not a poem or short story or phrase it’s a song)

The Tickle Rhyme

“Who’s that tickling my back?” said the wall.
“Me,” said a small
Caterpillar. “I’m learning
To crawl.”
Ian Serrallier

From the Random House Book of Poetry for Children (I highly recommend it!)
We got home and immediately the house was buzzing from all the talking the girls were doing. Going on and on about the pool. Pretty much prancing and skipping with joy around the living room and pool box.

I started lunch and setting up the pool at the same time. It was chaotic as I ran back and forth working on lunch and unpacking the pool and starting the electronic pump and then opening and assembling the new kids’ table I bought.

My kids are rough on children’s tables and the four we’ve had have all been broken!

I burned two grilled cheese sandwiches beyond recognition before I finally learned my lesson and stayed in the kitchen the entire time the third one was cooking. The kids were climbing all over the in-process-of-inflating pool and knocking out the electronic pump but by golly I was not going to burn another piece of bread!

After setting everything up, getting everyone decked out in their swimsuits, and carrying the pool/table/lunch/bubble machine outside we all sat down to enjoy lunch before a nice cool dip in the pool.

And by cool I mean cold.

I poured 6 pots of boiling water in with the freezing hose water and it got the water to be more cool than cold. I had warned the kids it was too cold yet for swimming but they were pretty set on swimming anyway!

Lunch was something I crave a lot. Tomato soup with grilled cheese sandwiches. Pretty much anything in the world with tomatoes in it is heaven to me.

Eating outside is happiness.


I also made some fries.

Payson had an entirely different lunch today since grilled cheese sandwiches are a huge no-no (dairy and gluten? yikes!) and the fries had modified food starch in them (contains gluten) and he does like tomato soup, I just used all of it for the girls. lol
Payson’s lunch is carrots and hummus and gluten-free granola. (He’d eaten a banana just before lunch, too.)

I bought some hummus from the store when it was on sale recently. I’ve made my own from 3 or 4 different recipes all with disastrous results and figured before giving up entirely on it I’d buy some from someone who knows what they’re doing.
And it was delicious! And Payson and Sierra are huge fans of it now!

After a fun, messy lunch, the kids went for the pool.

After they’d gotten used to the water temperature I brought out the bubble machine.

A quote from Sierra today, “This is the funnest time EVER!!”

We spent a good two hours out there eating and splashing around.


We came inside and everyone got baths. I was finishing up my 1 minute shower when the man installing our sunscreens knocked on the door. 3 hours late. And I had to sprint for clothes and toss them on my still-wet body and answer the door. Fun times.

After getting everyone dressed again I started an hour-long, intense-cleaning spree while the kids colored pictures. They drew themselves playing in their pool, of course 🙂

By this time they were “so hungry!” for a snack so I cut up some fruit and made some toast with nutella.
And hot chocolate because, yum!

Payson got the fruit and a gluten-free breadstick and some chocolate (coconut) milk. He’s never had chocolate milk and was loving it!
While they ate their snack I edited pictures and uploaded them to photobucket. Then I started dinner.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

I Couldn’t Love Them More

In the midst of the chaos that is my life as a mother, in the midst of frustration at my own flaws in dealing with it all, in the midst of the noise and the confusion and the messes (oh the messes I’ve cleaned), there are millions of moments of absolute perfection.

Noticing that everyone in the house is laughing. Tears in the eyes laughing. Doubled-over belly laughing.

Spotting cross-legged little girls in front of a random assortment of toys and hearing two little voices engaged in sisterly bonding.

Watching two toddler arms reaching up as “maaamaaa” is requested, feeling arms and legs wrap tightly around my torso. Preparing food with a heavy weight on my hip.

Perfect moments in my imperfect life.


Tuna boats with goldfish crackers are pretty darn fun.

Except that my daughters only ate the cheese! Tuna = Fail

The only picture I’ve taken of myself for a while.

Brooklyn’s been enjoying giving Sierra piggy back rides.



Sprouts has coconut milk now! Maybe they always had and I just wasn’t observant enough to notice, but either way I’m over the moon happy about it. As is Payson.

Weekly trips to the pizza parlor shouldn’t be a regular thing, should they? But, but I very much like pizza!

And so do these munchkins!

I’ve just run out of pictures so Sierra here will bid you farewell.

Mommy’s Monster

Oh how appropriate of an outfit Payson is wearing.
Mommy’s Monster, indeed.

I’d been redirecting him while I played around with frame placement on the floor. He just kept on running right back.

And unrelated to Payson’s turdness…
Brooklyn fell and hit her head today and since we were out of the house she asked me to take a picture of her so she could see her bruise. She was disappointed when she looked on the screen because she could hardly see it.

A Long Time at the Mall!

Have I mentioned I hate shopping?

I’ve gone out many times during this month (and by many I mean around four) to look for maternity clothes. I’ve been to at least 10 different stores and found absolutely nothing I like.

My regular clothes still fit but very uncomfortably. I can’t stand anything even a tiny bit tight against my stomach. I don’t own anything baggy or loose so this is a major problem! lol

Yesterday I decided that it was time to just buy clothes even if I don’t like the way they look. I am now way more concerned with comfort!

So the kids and I hit the mall.

We got to the mall around lunchtime and even though we’d eaten an hour earlier my kids decided they couldn’t last another second without food so we ate lunch at the food court.

We visited three different restaurants to get food that everyone liked and wasn’t allergic to. Subway for the girls, Panda Express for Payson, and a corndog for me! Yum.

Payson was very excited when I set his plate down in front of him.
He got the broccoli beef meal and surprisingly liked the broccoli more than the beef.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m anal about the messes my kids leave in restaurants. Luckily my kids are typically very clean eaters when we’re out but rice and Payson do NOT make a good match. He spilled a lot of his rice on the chair.
BUT the chair was so large that only a teensy bit of rice got on the floor! I was able to clean up the mess and felt really happy.

I know you all think I’m weird now, don’t you?

Payson is obsessed with sharing his food with everyone else. He does it every single meal we eat. Lately I’ll pretend to ignore his offering and then I’ll suddenly lunge for the food and rip it from his hands, surprising him and making him erupt in giggles.

Brooklyn thought what we were doing looked really fun so she came over to play, too.

He never gets tired of it.


The girls chose our table because it was the closest one to a carousel in the mall. All through lunch they talked about it. We haven’t been on a carousel for probably two years. The last time we rode one was at a zoo when we lived in Texas.



Payson’s never been on a carousel.

He had the biggest grin and kept looking up at me in such a cute way. I can’t even describe it but it was adorable.



http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=10639847&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=00ADEF&fullscreen=1




We did a lot of shopping in between all of this stuff, I just didn’t bother to take pictures because… boring.

We went outside because the weather was so dang nice. I let the kids play by the fountain. I was holding Payson’s hand or shirt the whole time because he kept trying to sprint full speed and didn’t have a care in the world that there was a fountain he could fall into.
I made sure that when I wasn’t holding his hand that I was a foot or two away from him and in between him and the water. It wasn’t dangerous or anything but I certainly didn’t want a sopping wet child!

That wasn’t good enough though, because he decided randomly to go on a run. A full-speed sprint. And where did he sprint to?

The stairs.

Do you think he stopped or even slowed down when he was approaching the stairs?

No.
Luckily for Payson the momentum of his running took him safely down the stairs a ways before he stumbled and started to roll. And luckily he started to roll instead of fall straight down because he rolled a few feet and came to a slow, gentle stop! He was perfectly fine. Not a scratch or bruise on him!

Still we made sure to keep a close eye on him and I didn’t let him go back up near the fountain again!




After playing outside for a half hour we had one last stop to make. We spent some time at Borders bookstore. Payson, for the first time in as long as I can remember, fell asleep in a store!

I was in such shock over it that I took a picture to document the occasion!

Which is funny because the same exact thing happened with Brooklyn at this same age so I took a picture to document it!
Brooklyn (2005):

After paying for our books we were on our way out and walking through the Seattle’s Best coffee shop and smelling the delicious smells (I love coffee but don’t drink it) and I had to stop for some hot chocolate!

It was too hot for Payson so he and I shared a water. He was pretty darn thrilled with his water the rest of the day (though in this picture he’d just woke up and was dazed.)

Right before we left the mall to head home I spotted a photobooth and well… a photobooth, come on, how can I resist??



The pictures strips we got make me smile. The first set is the first time we tried it with all of us. My kids could NOT figure it out. I should’ve explained things to the kids better before hand! lol
The second time with just the girls, after I’d explained where to look and sit, was way cuter 🙂