Please excuse the dust

Please excuse the dust as I work to revamp the blog and hopefully start using it again on a consistent basis.

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Been gone such a long time

Okay, okay so I’m finally back to trying to blog on a some what regular basis. Shocker, I know.

Please excuse my tremendusly long absance. To make up for it, lots and lots of pictures of our adventures for the last several months.

In February, Little Monkey turned 3. To celebrate we had race car party complete with race track cake!

Birthday Fun

Little Monkey blowing out the candles on his birthday cake.

One of the most popular toys to come from the birthday season is the Bilibo. The kids love this thing and are still playing with it almost three months later. Little Monkey loves to turn it upside down and stand on it and then jump off. Young Owl on the other hand, loves to sit in it and spin. The day care kids love it too. I think I am going to have to invest in a couple more.

Little Monkey playing with one of his favorite new toys.

Little Monkey playing with one of his favorite new toys.

Young Owl decided that he wanted to learn how to do chores and start earning an allowance. He insisted that Papa Penguin teach him how to do dishes because that sounded like a better chore than taking out the trash. Needless to say, his enthusiasm for doing chores was short lived.

Young Owl learning how to wash dishes. (He asked to do this, I swear!)

Young Owl learning how to wash dishes. (He asked to do this, I swear!)

Little Monkey, in his quest to be as much like his big brother as possible, has started to show an interest in learning his numbers and letters. He has been surprising me with his willingness and desire to learn (I’m not trying to push him in any way). Below he is doing what he dubbed his homework, number recognition and touch counting.

Little Monkey working on touch counting and number recognition.

Little Monkey working on touch counting and number recognition.

When he isn’t trying to mimic his brother, Little Monkey can be found in the kitchen begging to help cook. The boy practically has a melt down if I don’t let him help in some way. A few weeks ago, we put one of his new skills – peeling bananas – to good use and made Banana Peanut Butter muffins.

Little Monkey prefecting his banana peeling skills while making muffins with Mama Zookeeper.

Little Monkey perfecting his banana peeling skills while making muffins with Mama Zookeeper.

This past weekend, Young Owl convinced Papa Penguin to teach him how to play his old He-Man game. Not that this took much, as Papa Penguin enjoys introducing Young Owl to the joys of his childhood. Young Owl of course loved the game. Anything to be more like Papa.

Young Owl learning to play Papa Penguin's old He-Man board game.

Young Owl learning to play Papa Penguin's old He-Man board game.

We are finally enjoying some warmer weather again (thank goodness) and I have been trying to get the boys outside to enjoy and explore nature.  We ventured out on a nature walk a this month with Papa Penguin and Auntie in toe. We had a great time discovering bits of this and that from nature, listening to the animals and spying several different birds.

Boys enjoying their nature (run) walk.

Boys enjoying their nature (run) walk.

This past weekend was low key around the house. As I as getting ready to make dinner one evening Young Owl noticed the bright the light shining in the kitchen window. He decided to see what type of shadows he could make on the fridge. It wasn’t long before Little Monkey joined in too.

Young Owl making a cobra shadow on the fridge.

Young Owl making a cobra shadow on the fridge.

There really isn’t much news on the new baby front.  We are simply awaiting the newest one’s arrival this summer and taking the time between now and then to educate ourselves on cloth diapering and natural childbirth. 

Papa Penguin has been busy at work with a project that should be wrapping up soon. When he’s home the poor guy has been taking care of more of the household chores and Mama Zookeeper.  I think he is looking forward to the baby’s arrival when I finally go back to cooking and cleaning on a more regular schedule. 

In addition to being waited on hand and foot (not really), I have been busy with day care, pregnancy and reading. I seem to be fast approaching some ugly little birthday called the big 3-0. I have noticed that recently I have become more “hippie-dippie granola happy” which seems strange but natural at the same time. Perhaps, I’m finally growing up and worrying less about what popular culture wants for me and my family. That’d be a shocker, me a grown up by the time I turn 30.  

Well, that’s all the exciting adventures while we were away, or at least those were all we had pictures to remind me. Because as all the zoo knows, Mama Zookeepers memory is on vacation until the baby comes.

2008 Review

With all the year in review items in the news I decided I just couldn’t let the year end with out our own review of the year at the zoo.

But first I must review Christmas. Although it didn’t really resemble anything like the Christmas I was planning back in September (with lots of handmade gifts and baking and decorating), it was still nice none the less. Prolonged morning sickness will do that to a girl.

Best Christmas gifts of 2008:

  • Little Monkey’s most loved gift: any of the presents that had wheels!
  • Young Owl’s most desired gift: the much awaited Batcave!
  • Papa Penguin’s most enjoyable gift: the entertaining Nintendo DS!
  • Mama Zookeeper’s most beloved gift: a beautiful neckless from her favorite designer Lisa Leonard!
Boys enjoying the goodies from Santa!

Boys enjoying the goodies from Santa!

Now back to the year in review.

Things that made us feel that the boys are growing up too quickly:

  • Young Owl loosing his first tooth then a second.
  • Little Monkey mastering potty training and speaking in greater depth.

Top political quotes uttered by the children:

  • After taking Young Owl to an Obama rally: MZ – “What are you going to tell your teacher about what you saw tonight?” YO – “We don’t like John McCain’s policies.”
  • While watching the news Little Monkey see Obama setting out a wreath at a Veteran’s Day service – “Look mommy, Obama finally got his present!”

Bug of the year:

The bug of the year.

The bug of the year.

This is just one of about 2 dozen that we found over the summer. Thanks to much internet searching by a wonderful aunt we learned that this is a tussock moth!

Most delicious family outing:

Outing to the Strawberry Patch

Outing to the Strawberry Patch

We were fortunate to find a brand new local berry patch. The strawberries were the best we’ve ever had and we will definitely try to make this a yearly event. Unfortunately we didn’t make it to either of our favorite apple orchards this year. We will definitely have it on the list of family events for 2009!

Best news of 2008:

  • Little Monkey’s eyes are fine. After much unnecessary worrying we had his eyes checked and where told he has great sight.
  • Young Owl made leaps in his reading. Thanks to his hard work with his auntie, he is well ahead of where he needs to be.
  • The zoo is expanding. We are so blessed to be expecting again and are looking forward to meeting our new little one in 2009.

What we’re looking forward to in 2009:

  • New baby! Seriously for all the suffering this child is causing me, we are truly excited and I’m looking forward to holding the baby in my arms.
  • A new home? Okay we have tried this song and dance many times before but this time we really need to get out of this small place otherwise the baby is going to have to sleep in the living room.
  • Another blog. Crazy becuase I haven’t really been updating all that frequently here but I am also working on a food blog.  I’ll give everyone a link when I get a post up.
  • Tons new of family memories! From outings as a family to art projects with the boys. You never know what new memories we’ll be making in 2009.

So until then, please have a safe, healthy and happy new year.

With love from the zoo

Gone so long?

Sorry I’ve been absent for so long. The holidays seem to be sneaking up on me this year…of course I have a good excuse for not being ready.  We’re pregnant!! Unfortunately, something about morning (read all day) sickness makes a girl not want to ever get out of bed again!  Hopefully we’ll be over this phase soon.  Until I get back to regular blogging here is a little bit of what to expect in 2009:

  • Baby news – the new little one should be arriving late summer
  • News for the zoo – what the boys are up to
  • Food blog – this is still in the works, but hopefully I will still be able to start up a cooking blog this year

Until then… Merry Christmas

Updating some things

Things have been very very busy around here. I currently enrolled in a infant and toddler development and care class two nights a week and our Wednesday night church program has officially started. All this has left me with three nights away from home and a lot less blogging time, ugh! I promise I will be here sometime this weekend posting about all the goings on with the boys. Lots to talk about (birthdays, crushes, play dates and more). I am also going to be slowly adding links to other blogs that inspire me because I want to share where all the great ideas are coming from!

Newest News

Gee, where have I been? I don’t even know. I should be sleeping right now but I thought I would quickly post the latest from the zoo.

Sunday Young Owl lost his first tooth! I just can’t get over how much he is growing up. I wish he’d stop it. With his birthday later this month I’ve been feeling like the last 6 years have flown by in a blink of an eye. (Mom your right, time goes so much faster after you have kids!)

My toe is starting to heal after breaking it last week. Lets just say I am totally ungraceful! It was killing me to have to sit with my foot up as much as possible. Thankfully today I was able to be on my feet for a normal amount of time, walk Young Owl home from school, get some laundry done and I’m not in too much pain tonight.

Little Monkey is doing well too. He seems to be going on a “I don’t want to eat anything you set in front of me” phase again. I really hate these for two reasons, 1) I don’t want him to be hungry, and 2) I don’t want to give in and let him eat junk. Have to have a picture of him too just because… This is for a couple of days ago when Little Monkey mixed up some muffins for me. (I know not from scratch, I’m slacking off. My toe was already broken at this point and I didn’t want to find a recipe and hunt for ingredients in the house. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it.)

Happening hair and silly sayings

Young Owl wanted to try out a new hair style for school this year and Little Monkey wanted his hair the same way.  Luckily I snapped some pictures shortly after their hair was styled because by afternoon Young Owl’s hair was pretty much flat again. 

happening hair

happening hair

The boys have been cracking me up the past few days too.  I thought I would share some of their silliness with all of you.

happening hair too

happening hair too

LM (in van on way to dr appt): …mad…

MZ: Oh

LM: Really mad. Really really mad. 1, 2, 3 mad

MZ: Who’s mad?

LM: Baby cheetah mad

MZ: Why? (Knowing Baby Cheetah not mad as she was cooing happily in her carseat)

LM: Baby Cheetah wants my drink, mad

MZ (trying not to laugh): okay

ready to rock

ready to rock

In the afternoon it was Young Owl’s turn.

YO (signing): It’s a pizza life, it’s a pizza life..

MZ: It’s a piece of life?

YO: No, it’s a pizza life

MZ: Oh

YO: That’s what I’m going to name my restaurant where I cook. (Referring to his life long dream of becoming a chef/rock star)

MZ: Really

YO: Yep. At my restaurant there is going to be all kinds of pizza. I’ll have bacon and eggs too.

MZ: Bacon and eggs on pizza.

YO: No mom…I suppose if you really like bacon and eggs on your pizza we could make it that way.

yesterday's yummy breakfast

yesterday's yummy breakfast, future item on Young Owl's menu?

Bonus for you all. Young Owl explaining to the neighbor boy that being 65 isn’t old.

YO: 65 isn’t old.

Friend: Yes it is, my grandpa died

YO: My great-grandma died. I’ll tell you how you know if someone is old enough to die…they have white hair. If they have white hair they’re close to dying. If it’s dark their not.

Ah, gotta love that kid logic.