Taken for a B Ride

I’ve been taken. Taken for a huge ride. I’ve had my eye on this toy (for lack of a better word since it’s not really a toy and not a craft) for awhile. I’ve seen them on tv in commercials and infomercials. The other day as I was leaving a big box drug store with my purchases the toy caught my eye. It was a valuebox and I thought it would provide hours of fun in the airplane to California for my kids, aged 2 and 3.

This toy, lets call them “bendaboos”…
SUCK!

I am trapped this morning in a hotel suite, we are in town for an 80th birthday party and to find a house to move from Wisconsin to So. California. This am I am trapped in the suite with the kids while my partner meets with the mortgage broker. I thought it would be a great time to bust out my new wonder toy for hours of their enjoyment.

I have basically been taken for a huge ride. Bendaboos are nothing more than wax coated string.

Do not fall for this people! Oh and did i mention it is $20 worth of wax coated string? That was played with for all of two minutes and is now a pile of junk on the hotel floor?

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“an alarm will sound if opened”

Today, prior to some Halloween festivities we took our kids to an indoor Children’s gym to run some crazies off. We’ve been to this gym upwards of 10 times. Today my son opened the door marked, “an alarm will sound if opened”…and the alarm sounded and it was mortifying and it took three people to make the crazy noise stop.
We gave him a time out and explained that when that door opens grown ups get scared. We also made him apologize to the owner. He was very afraid to do so but did.

An hour later my daughter opened the same door. I couldn’t get over it! They never touch that door! I made her have a time out and apologize as well.

Fast forward to this evening, I’m telling a friend about what the kids did. And how they never touch that door…

And my partner confesses they have done this before, when she has taken them without me to this place.

what? Seriously?

Monster Under the Bed?

How can I convince my children there are no monsters under the bed when I find THIS under the bed?

Tissue Monster!

S. Street Does it Again!

Day Out With Thomas 2010

Day Out With Thomas 2010 the Celebration Tour! Thomas’s 65th Birthday

Our son has been into Thomas the Tank Engine since he was a little over 1 year old. Last year I found out about Day Out With Thomas (DOWT) after the fact and we were crushed. Well, this year I jumped on the opportunity. For those of you not in the know, DOWT is an event where an actual Thomas the Train, life sized, real working engine makes stops at area railroad stations and museums for a week long event. For a measly $18 (kids under 2 free!) you get to ride in a train car pulled by Thomas. You get your picture taken with Thomas and there are tons of other fun Thomas and train activities to do.

Whoever thought of this idea is a God! Imagine, having a literary character you love come to life! Thomas is about so much more than the toys and videos. Thomas started as a story between a father and a son. This grew into published books, then a video series, then wholesome wooden toy trains…

Thomas is void of violence. Thomas is now being used for children with autism, as they learn about feelings and emotions by watching the emotions on the different trains faces as they learn to identify what those faces mean.

Thomas is filled with great storylines about being a good friend. And I use some of the other phrases heard over and over again to motivate my son:

“Be on track and on time” helps to get him going

“You’re a very useful engine” gets him to help put toys away, help his sister, help us…

The day was beautiful. When the kids saw Thomas Zoe lost her mind, Carter just was blank in the face…it was all too much for him to comprehend as he tried to take it in. I was surprised at my own reaction as I choked back tears. Tears knowing what a special day this was for him, tears knowing how much we have gone through to have this special little boy we can give opportunities like this to. Tears for every little kid who was seeing their shiny, blue friend.

Think back to footage you have seen of teenagers loosing their minds, fainting when they saw the Beatles…now picture nearly the same thing with a bunch of toddlers over a blue engine with a cheeky smile.

I know he may not remember this early memory forever (although we do plan to go again) but so far, he has talked about it every day since.

Hey Where’d this Black Kid Come From?

Hey kid! What'd ya never see a black kid before?

There is this thing I have been noticing. I cannot help but observe behaviors, it’s what I do. Usually it is in dogs but I have found this weird parallel between dogs and kids…anyway…so far this is not one of those times…

Where we live it is a pretty mixed neighborhood. Our block has many children, all white but the block to the south of is has many black children. And my children go to a day care at a very mixed race college so 50% of their friends at school are black. But I notice that many of the places we frequent do not have many black kids. And I notice this thing go on and can’t tell if it is a black thing or not.

Let me describe:

There is an indoor kids playground we go to that we call the BBY. It is in the burbs and usually we have the only two black kids, sometimes there is one other black kid. But there were some kids playing in a playhouse, about 3 of them, Carter walked in and they stopped and just stared at him. Now, I don’t know if they all knew each other and they were looking at him, like “Hey, who is this kid? We don’t know him.” or if they were stopped dead in their tracks because he is black.

I have noticed it many times, just cannot recall them all right now.

Then there was our Day out With Thomas up in Green Bay, WI. Hardly any other black children were there and when I got to my computer to look at the pictures from the day I spotted the “look” I am talking about.

What do you think? Is that just a look kids give each other or is that a, “Hey, where’d this black kid come from? look?

“We Should Tape This”

So the other night we were goofing around with the kids, mainly Carter and I was yelling out dog training commands, which are very similar to the way you would instruct children. I said, “Carter, Come” and he did. Then I jokingly got a little bowl of mini M&M’s and said “We should tape this” to which Carter ran out of the room and came back with this…

Seriously, he did. Now that is funny!

I meant with the flip camera because what was about to happen next was pretty funny too.

I said, “Carter sit” and he sat and I gave him an M&M. I said, “Carter lay down” he did…bam M&M

Roll over was filled with giggles and we are still working on it.