Tuesday, September 15, 2009


As inappropriate as this story may seem, I feel the need to share it.  For just a one moment, I want all of you to experience what it is like to live with Matthew.  He is such a bright, and strong-willed little boy.  While I know this combination will serve him well in life, it certainly makes parenting him a challenge.  

Lately, we have had many conversations with him about choices.  Life is all about choices, and when you make bad ones (as all little boys do), there are consequences.  

We are trying to get him to understand (in 4-year old terms) that he is his own person, and that he doesn't have to make the same (read BAD) choices that his friends at daycare tend to make. 

With kids, you never really know what sinks in and what doesn't.  I am going to gather from the exchange below that at least some of what we say actually makes its way into his thick skull.  

Here is three minutes of our ride home tonight: 

Matthew:  "Mommy, what do I smell?"
Me:  "I don't know, I don't smell anything."
Matthew:  "It smells like someone tooted."
Me:  "Well ... did you toot?"
Matthew:  "No!"
Me:  "Maybe Amy did, but I don't smell anything."
Matthew (with growing frustration):  "WELL ... I do smell it!  And if I smell it, then it is there!"
Me:  "Ok, I am just telling you that I don't smell anything."
Matthew:  "Well, that is because my smell is gooder than yours!"
Me:  "I think the word you are looking for is better.  My sense of smell is better than yours."
Matthew:  "NO!  The word is GOODER!"
Me:  "No, the word is better"
Matthew:  "NO!  If I want to say gooder I can.  It is my choice.  If I want to make that choice I can.  If you want your choice to be better - that is fine - but my choice is to say gooder."
Me:  "You're right.  It is your choice to say gooder.  It is my choice to say better."

Enough said.  I liked that he thought through his argument and was so passionate about it.  In a different state of mind, I may have driven off the road, but for tonight - it was good banter.  Goodnight my little Matthew.  I love you.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Lynhurst at Lake Harriet

Last night we decided to try something new with the kids - outdoor music at the Lake Harriet band shell.  It was great.  I wish we would have done it more this summer!  

A local band called Lynhurst was playing.  I had seen a promo for them on a Saturday morning news program.  They were really good.  A group of siblings that grew up together in south Minneapolis.  I thought it was only appropriate that we go and support the neighborhood talent!  

So ... after naptime ... we packed up a picnic dinner and enjoyed a wonderful evening in the park.  The kids loved the live music.  Matthew was clapping along to all of the songs (it doesn't matter that nobody else was clapping when you are 4).  Arik took him right up by the stage a couple of times.  As you can see from the pictures - he was mesmerized!  I think we might have a future musician on our hands.  

What a great way to end the summer!

State Fair 2009

It is that time of year again - time to walk around with thousands of other Minnesotans and eat ourselves silly.  It is time for the State Fair!

As usual, we got out there early with the kids.  Our first stop was at Tom Thumb donuts where we got our usual bag of sugary goodness.  In order to survive the next few hours, we knew those tasty treats could only go with one thing - COFFEE!

After our initial gluttony, we took off to find the giant slide.  If you go there early enough, the lines are minimal.  Arik took Matthew down first.  He loved it.  They took a video of the entire experience on the Flip.  If any of you are connected to Arik on Facebook, he posted it there yesterday.  Go out watch it.  It is pretty funny.  

Next up - Amers.  We didn't know how she would do, but the daredevil wasn't about to leave without her turn.  She looked completely terrified as they came sliding down, but she talked about it for the rest of the day.  I guess she liked it.  

After the slide, we purchased our second tasty treat - Sweet Martha's Cookies!  We tried hard to explain to the kids that the only place you get to eat cookies in the morning is at the Fair.  Such a special day!  I could have made 12 dozen for what it cost us to purchase the smallest cup, but it was well worth it.  

Next up - Machinery Hill.  This is one of Matthew's favorites.  He loves to climb on all of the tractors and pretend he is driving them.  Who would have thought a bunch of parked tractors could create so much fun?  

Then it was on to the Little Farm Hands exhibit.  This is a really cute place that gets the kids dressed up in aprons, and walks them through a day in the life on the farm.  They loved it.  Just about everything is fake, but they still think it is cool.  

Right outside of the farm was the Kemps station (shocking, I know!).  Both kids got a little cow tattoo that continue to reside on their little arms.  Amy was quick to tell me at bath time that, "no wash off a cow Mommy!"

After a pronto pup, we took a quick break to rehydrate everyone and take off for the sky ride.  The kids LOVED that!  We got off at the other side of the Fair and were able to walk through the horse barn, the cow barn, and the Miracle of Birth exhibit with all of the baby animals.  It was really crowded down there, but still fun for the kids.  

After some french fries, we grabbed an ice cream cone and headed home for naps.  After 4 hours at the Fair, everyone was pretty hot and tired.  

Let's hope our arteries have recovered by the time we head back next year!