Family

Let’s Talk About Me!

There’s a song by popular country music artist Toby Keith. It’s titled, “Let’s Talk About Me” (clicking the title will take you to the video). The basic point of this song is a boyfriend who is sick and tired of hearing all about his woman and he never gets to talk about himself at all. He runs through a list of things he has to listen to and know about his girl and he’s tired of it – just once, he wants to talk about himself.

I got to thinking about this video last night. I’ve been talking all about me and not really getting into detail about the other people in my life. So, this post is titled “Let’s Talk About Me!” when it all actuality, it won’t be – or, shouldn’t be.

Brendan – the baby: Five years old and in a new Kindergarten. How’s he doing?

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In school, he’s doing very well. He’s only had a few mishaps with using the bathroom. Twice because he was so very sick and once because he and the teacher got distracted and forgot about getting to the bathroom in time. I thought he would have the worst time with the move but I was wrong. He’s doing great in school and his teacher loves him. What’s not to love, right?

Above is a project he brought home at Christmastime. He was auditioning to be an elf and had to fill out an application as part of a Kindergarten play activity.

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Christmas needs and wants practice. This looks like so much fun but frustrating as well. How does a 5 year old decide what is a need or a want? I would have loved to be a part of that conversation at school!

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Learning about Octopi (is that the right word?). On the side pieces, there are different things about the octopus that he learned.

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1. Shoots Ink

2. No bones

3. Changes Color (but not to purple as I asked. Apparently, they don’t know how to change to purple)

4. They have *blank* eyes. I forget what it says and can’t zoom in close enough to tell. We’ll assume they have two eyes for now.

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1. They have blue blood (Apparently, they are the original royal family).

2. They are very strong.

3. They live in the ocean.

4. They have 8 tentacles.

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Have you met the “IN” family? Pin, Bin and the others? This was a cute hat he wore home just yesterday.

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And the caterpillar family? Camp, Cup, Cat, Clock, Cupcake and … um… I can’t read that last purple one. I believe it says Camera. It’s a caterpillar made of C words that forms a C with its body. Too cute!

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And, finally, a personalized stocking for Christmas. I think it is very cute but not something we can actually use for Christmas. Might ruin it!

All in all, Brendan is doing very well and his teacher is very impressed with how smart he is. She’s currently in the process of finding some chapter books that are appropriate for his age-group. He’s starting to get jealous because Caiden reads a chapter with me a night and he doesn’t; he has to go to bed. We’ve started some of the other books I have that are pre-1960s but they are a little harder for him to follow along in.

Caiden – the eldest, the one who is identical to me in every way: how is he doing? What’s he up to? Is he adjusting?

I’m not sure. He gets in trouble quite a bit in school; unfortunately. It’s little things though. Tapping his pencil, fiddling with his glasses (which he (we) have now lost), not focusing on the reading group when he is supposed to. We have to meet with his teacher again this afternoon and I’ve told Mark that I’m not going. I can’t handle her telling me how awful my son is – yet again.

He’s really not a bad kid! He gets distracted, yes. It’s not a reason to keep a daily log on my boy and all he does wrong. There are days that, yes, I do come down on him for his behavior at school. For the most part, I am working with him to learn how to properly behave in a 2nd grade class when his age dictates he be in a 1st grade class.

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As for his classwork? He’s getting nearly all As! He can do the work; he just has to mature a little on the behavior. We’re working with him, trying to get him to understand. I’m thinking he will eventually get it. Hopefully not too late.

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Mountains created from strips of paper and glued onto a hard piece of paper. For the life of me, I can’t remember what they call this. I’m thinking paper mache but that can’t be right. I actually like it!

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This card was saved because Caiden got so very attached to it. Brendan brought it home in his backpack but Caiden latched on to it. He really wanted to go see Santa and carried this around with him all over the house until it was time to go. I’m talking, over a week of carrying it everywhere!

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A Santa drawing made from his hands and feet. I think that’s just about the most darling thing I’ve ever seen!

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Mark and I were unsure of which child created the candy cane. We decided it was Caiden. The cute part is that the bow tie actually is two pieces. It sticks out of the candy cane and is only attached in the middle. It was cute.

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For Christmas, Caiden brought home the cutest present for me. It’s a piece of wood painted blue and his hand print used to make an angel. It sits on my dresser, now.

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Yesterday, Caiden brought his home. It was his self-portrait. This is definitely a keeper for when he gets older. On the back side explains why they did this self-portrait.

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Basically, they were learning that, no matter what color you are, you are all the same. A great project for Martin Luther King Jr’s day.

Caiden is doing good on his work and he’s learning a lot. He is whizzing through math like it’s nothing and, according to him, having a great time in school. If we could just get him to behave the way his teacher demands, he’d do fine in his new school. I’ve mixed feelings about it all. I think she’s a bit over-picky and I think my son needs to learn to respect authority that is not me.

The Nanny – how is Jen doing?

We’ve had a rough start getting Jen out on her own. We got her a place and all the fixings to live comfortably but she’s rarely there. It seems I still need her a bit and she needs to be around us a bit. I guess you can’t blame her after living with us and being a part of every little thing for the past 3.5 years.

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However, we’ve been pushing her to get a steady job to pay her own bills and start her own life. It’s time for her to start branching out – much like the 18 year old daughter needing to get out on her own. She had a couple false-starts on jobs here in town and then finally signed up for a CNA class. She passed the class with flying colors and is now considered an NA (Nurses Assistant). In 90 days, she’ll be able to take her test and become a CNA (Certified Nurses Assistant).

She seems to be doing ok with that and has worked 3 full shifts to date. She just might have found her “niche.” I’m happy for her and am waiting to see her take it further! Of course, she can’t go too far. I still need her from time to time!

Mark – what’s he up to?

Not much, except for working so I can have money to spend. That’s about it, really. Right now, he’s trying to be a Scrooge with his money so he can get a new truck for his job. I’m balking because I hate saving money – I’d rather spend it – but he’s holding firm.

And that’s that – what we’re all up to. The boys seem to be doing ok and, if we can get Caiden to settle down a bit more in school, things would be great. Everyone seems to be enjoying Montana, so far.

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Exploring Our New State

We’ve moved to Montana, we’re getting settled in and it was time to do something fun. We’ve done a few things but this time, I actually had my camera. A week ago, on Saturday, I came up with an idea.

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Our goal? Go see a Santa Exhibit in Butte, Montana. A chance notice in a local paper directed us to where we were going. On arrival, I took some pictures of the awesome building while the boys played in the snow for a bit.

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They played and I snapped pictures, assuming that, when we were ready, we’d go on inside.

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A beautifully built old brick building. I tried my hand at photography and capture the beauty my eye could see.

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Maybe I did it justice, maybe I didn’t. Either way, when we decided to head on inside to see the Santa exhibit, we realized we were at the wrong building. My GPS had failed me. While Jen drove the boys in the Rendy, I walked the streets for a few minutes, looking for the right building. This town, Butte, is full of old buildings that beg for a photographer who knows what they are doing to come snap some photos.

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I found the right building and it was just as stunning in its old world beauty as the first one we went to. After a couple pictures of the outside, we made our way in.

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The place was stunning by itself, the architecture spoke volumes to my old word heart. It was full of Santa – every shape size and color you could come up with.

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We tried looking at all of them but it was difficult – there was so many!

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Beautiful older pieces mixed with the newer plastic pieces of our world.

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They even had a fairy Santa, for those who love fairies.

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Fat ones, skinny ones, tall ones and short ones. Thousands of Santas in one building.

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Santa on a horse next to a porcelain Santa cup.

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A huge Santa for the boys to try and measure up to across from another Santa of interesting creation…

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A Jester Santa. Guaranteed to make you chuckle, this Santa is just waiting to entertain a young child.

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And, of course, a Weeble-Wobble-type Santa.

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Santas lining the steps to the upstairs. We were not allowed up there – it’s still under construction. And, with that, we headed out. I wasn’t ready for the day to end this soon so we head out to another town close by (about an hour or so). It is called Phillipsburg, Montana. It boasted an antique store and I set out to drive that way to see what we could find.

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On arrival, we set to walking around and realized it was a simple tourist-trap. A place that sells items that look good but are typically made in China and pretty worthless as a whole. We wandered around a few minutes, had some snacks and looked at some of the color of the town.

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A table and chairs set up above a restaurant as advertisement.

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Giant-sized fork and spoon as decoration as well.

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And a few local artists creating wildlife statues for decoration. With that, we head out of Phillipsburg. I’m hoping the next small town we decide to check out has a bit more than just high-priced trinkets for sale.

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This past Saturday, the boys wanted to play electronics. I made a deal with them. If they fill one plastic bag full of the pine cones and needles all over the yard, they could play electronics all day. I expected it to take at least an hour but they were done in under ten minutes. Since this coming weekend promises to be full of adventure, we didn’t go very far this weekend. I let them play and have fun all weekend.

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Categories: Family, House/Yard Changes, Local Business Review, Photography, Socializing, Trips | Leave a comment

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