Monday, March 31, 2014

Everyone Thinks I'm a Girl

Everyone in South Africa constantly mistake Ben for a girl.  I think it has something to do with his floppy mop top but at the same time, he's usually wearing blue or firetrucks and really? Oh well, it doesn't bother me and it certainly doesn't bother him.  Speaking of girls, Patricia, our housekeeper, keeps telling me I "need a girl".  She says "I had 5 boys, and then I got my girl".  Well, Patricia, sorry but that does not seem like a particularly stellar plan. I am absolutely and 100% beyond blessed with my two guys and, frankly, 3 + kids is way above my pay grade.  Sure, who wouldn't want a daughter but we have about all the happy chaos we can handle at the moment. Or ever. So, thanks but no thanks. 

 Baby selfie.

Faerie Glen Park

Here is Nate, running down the trail like a lion is chasing him.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Irene Dairy Farm

Last weekend, we went with some friends to the Irene Dairy Farm here in Pretoria.  It has to be said: South Africans know how to do the family outdoor day of leisure.  They have it down. So many places here are set up with outdoor seating, shaded areas to eat, and tons of space for kids to play. The farm has a great outdoor restaurant, playground, grassy areas to lounge, a farm shop, and obviously, lots of animals.  Even though we didn't stay to see it, you can also see the cows being milked in the afternoon.  And all I have to say about that is, I feel you cows.  Post-babies, I am extremely empathetic.  

Lunch.  On the weekends it's a bbq buffet.

Nate having fun at the playground.

Ben fish hooking Nate.

How cute are swimming ducklings?

The restaurant from the grass.

Sitting like it ain't no thing.

The King, holding court.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Driving Range

If you need an honest opinion regarding your golf game, ask Nate.  He will absolutely tell you if he thinks you had a "nice one, Daddy" or "that was not a good one".  It is a little hard to determine his criteria for excellence though. Most of his low scores seem to be exactly the same as the ones he rates well.  Good or bad, however, he will jump up and down for you as your own personal fan club so you always have that.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Somebody is Crawling

Ben is on the move.  He wants to chew on your phone.  He wants to eat the play mat.  He wants to gnaw on your fingers and open mouth kiss your face.  His hair is floppy, his cheeks are chubby, and don't be lulled into thinking his chunky baby thighs will slow him down.  Lickety split and this little dude would be across the room.  For now, the baby gate is containing him but I sense him testing the weakness of the enclosure like a Jurassic Park raptor.  Watch out world.

Talking with Nate #3

After helping Nate get dressed for school...
Nate: I look perfect!

On the way to school...
Nate: Almost to my friends!

On the way to home from school...
Nate: Bye my friends, bye my friends.

After telling him he needs to be patient...
Nate: I just wait then.

After he coughed once and looked at me...
Nate: I bless you, Mommy.

Playing with his trains...
Nate: Thomas buffers up to Percy! Thomas is too happy.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Haircut in an Airplane

Somebody has a new 'do!  Word on the street is that Ben could also use a haircut but I can't bring myself to cut it yet so, for now, he will remain a floppy mop top.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Hanging with Ben

Not to leave Ben out, here he is working on some teeth. Ben has been a party animal lately, waking up every couple of hours at night and wanting to practice his moves on his new found legs during the day.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Nate's First Day at Preschool

Today, on a rainy day in Pretoria, Nate started preschool.  This was an extremely difficult day.  For me.

Nate, on the other hand, did great.  After a brief bit of crying in the beginning, his teachers (he has teachers!) said he was off and running with the other kids.  For now, we are only going to send him a couple days a week but he seemed to really like his first half day.  When I picked him up at lunch and asked him if he liked school, he said, "aaaaahh!".  Which is Nate talk for an emphatic "yes".  And then, in the car, on the way home, he said "bye to my friends".  And after that, my heart exploded from the cuteness.

Nate insisted, as he does most days, on wearing his Thomas the Train shirt.  Before I had kids, I vowed never to put my kids in t-shirts with characters on them.  It will not happen you say but then, your child lights up with joy at the idea and your previous convictions disappear.  I also said I wouldn't have plastic toys scattered around our house and that Nate would eat whatever healthy option we put in front of him.  But, of course, our house looks like a Toys R Us outlet and today he ate macaroni and cheese again.  Turns out, kids are independence seeking little rebels starting at age 0.  Cute rebels though.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Big Guy, Little Pants

Today, Patricia dressed Ben's pants.  So, yeah, they are a little big on Ben.  And who among us doesn't love a good, tight fitting, pair of man-capris? But nonetheless, I opted to change Nate into his own Nate-sized pants anyways.  Sorry Patricia, close but no cigar.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Talking with Nate #2

Me: Hey, are you ready to get going?
Nate: Let's do this!

Me: Nate, it's time for dinner!
Nate: Let's do this!

Me: Nate, bath time!
Nate: Let's do this!

Nate, while sitting on the play mat with Ben...
Nate: Ben is trouble...(thinks a bit)...I trouble too!

After picking him up from his crib after his nap...
Nate: I too happy!

Me: Hi, sweetheart.
Nate: Actually, it's Nate.

Me: Nate, can you move the blocks away from the fence?
Nate: Actually, it's a gate.