1st halloween in our new ‘hood

Posted by kyden on Thursday Oct 31, 2013 Under Uncategorized

in our new neighborhood, there are a lot of families and a lot of kids.  so we expected that on halloween, porches would be lit and the streets would be buzzing with hundreds of kids.  we decorated our house, carved our pumpkins (actually sienna just blinged hers out), and we bought 3 giant bags of candy from costco.  we were ready for the mad rush!

1E7A3705our first trick-or-treater of the night was a super gangnam style chicken on rollerskates.  that’s what he called himself.  i was going to do my job and give him 2 pieces of candy, but his costume made mommy laugh out loud, so she told him that he could have as much candy as he could grab with one hand.  she regretted it as soon as she saw his ginomrous hand and long fingers reach into our candy bowl.  lesson learned.  mommy also regretted not taking a photo of the super gangnam style chicken on rollerskates.

1E7A3721anyway, our favorite halloween tradition is going trick-or-treating with matthew.  in his neighborhood, people don’t really get into halloween, so he comes to ours.  but now that we live in san ramon, it’s a long drive to get all the way up here on a weeknight, especially with traffic and all.  so by the time he arrived and we all scarfed down our dinners and changed into our costumes, we didn’t hit the streets until almost 8:00pm.

matthew was chase (the police bot), sienna was a bumblebee, and i was superman (for the 3rd year in a row).  mommy suggested that i dress up as bumblebee, the rescue bot.  then i would have matched with matthew and sienna.  clever, huh?  but i didn’t go for it.  i wanted to be superman.

1E7A3745matthew and i took turns ringing doorbells (last year we were too short to reach the doorbells so we had to knock), and we all said “trick-or-treat” together.  as soon as we got our candy, matthew and i thanked the candy-givers and ran off to the next house.  (i ran so fast that my cape kept coming off.  mommy wanted me to leave it off, but i insisted on putting it back on every time because i wanted to fly.)  but not sienna.  sienna hung around the porch and just kept looking at the candy-givers.  usually, they gave her more candy because they didn’t want to close their doors on a cute little bumble bee.  i think it was all part of her plan.  mommy would eventually coax her down from the doorstep, then sienna would say “my friends are leaving me!” and then she’d run after me and matthew.  all night, mommy was yelling, “wait for your sister!”  she was totally holding us back.

in our new neighborhood, there were more elaborate halloween decorations than in our old one — haunted mazes with scary music, flying ghosts, and candy bowls with skeleton hands that grab you.  (lemme tell you, sienna is brave.)  in our old neighborhood, some houses didn’t get into halloween, and that was okay.  they left their porch lights off, so we just skipped them.  but the weird thing about our new neighborhood is that there were a lot of houses that were all dressed up for halloween, but they just left a bowl of candy on the porch with a sign that said “please take 1” (or in some cases, 3 or 4).  we’re not sure if that’s because lots of people go to house parties (we did run across a bunch of those), if families/neighbors all like to go trick-or-treating together (like cousin zoey and her entire cul-de-sac), or if it’s because we got a late start and those houses were done for the night.  the candy bowls are a nice thought, but not fun for us.  we don’t care about candy, we just want to ring doorbells!

1E7A3747we hit 3 cul-de-sacs this year.  we could have done more, but sienna was too slow.  i hope jeffrey (matthew’s baby brother) can go trick-or-treating with sienna next year so that matthew and i can run off by ourselves.  back at home, daddy greeted a lot of trick-or-treaters, but not nearly as many as we expected.  (maybe 75-100?)  we still have an entire unopened bag of candy!

here are some pictures of our halloween fun (including a few from our parade at school).  i can’t wait for halloween to come next year.  i will probably be superman.  again.  happy halloween everyone!

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baby sister, please?

Posted by kyden on Tuesday Oct 29, 2013 Under Uncategorized

20131029-IMG_1980for the past few months, i have been asking mommy for a baby sister.

me:  i hope you can have a baby in your tummy.

mommy:  why?

me:  i want to have a baby sister.

mommy:  you have a baby sister.

me:  no i don’t.

mommy didn’t understand that i want a new baby sister.  sienna is not a baby any more.  she’s a big girl now.

last week, sienna got on board.  she told mommy that she wants a baby sister, too.  mommy was surprised about that because sienna doesn’t like it when mommy pays attention to other kids and hates hates HATES it when mommy holds other babies.  mommy tried to explain that to sienna, but she insisted.  she wants a baby sister too.

sienna and i both want a baby sister.  (mommy thinks that auntie barbara must have gotten to us and brainwashed us.)  sometimes we hug or share things and then get mommy and daddy’s attention (“look, we are sharing!”) to show how much sibling love there is in our family.  but still, mommy and daddy refuse to give us a baby sister.  so it’s a tie — 2 in favor, and 2 opposed.  don’t you think we should have another baby sister?  you can be the tie-breaking vote!

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arts and crafts and a LOT of fries

Posted by kyden on Saturday Oct 26, 2013 Under Uncategorized

today, mommy did the dirty girl mud run with a bunch of our aunties.  if you want to run, jump, slip, and slide with her in the mud next year, registration is already open!

20131026-mikewhile mommy was out today, sienna and i hung out with daddy.  we got all dressed up in our halloween costumes (actually, daddy mistakenly put me in my superman costume from last year — easy mistake, since i’m going to be superman again this year, but in a different costume) and we went to the danville fall crafts festival.

there was the promise of trick-or-treating there, but sienna and i only got a few pieces of candy.  sorry daddy,  we tried to get more m&m’s for you.  we walked around and looked at the arts and crafts, and we even saw a pumpkin patch with glass pumpkin.  that’s silly.  how can you carve a glass pumpkin or eat glass pumpkin seeds?

20131026-IMG_1978the best part of the day was the train ride.  while we were in line for the train, mommy texted daddy to invite us to join her for lunch.  train ride or lunch with mommy?  easy decision.  we rode the train.  we definitely made the right choice.

after we left the craft fair, daddy took us out to lunch.  when mommy got home and asked daddy about our day, he told her that he fed us grilled fish and zucchini.  but i told mommy that i ate a burger and a LOT of fries.

mommy:  oh REALLY?  how many is a LOT of fries?

me: one hundred.

daddy:  he had 4.  kyden, did you have 4 fries?

me:  four HUNDRED.

who’s telling the truth?  nobody will ever know.

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flashlight safari

Posted by kyden on Friday Oct 25, 2013 Under Uncategorized

every year around halloween, happy hallow hosts a flashlight safari.  it’s a nighttime adventure through the zoo where kids get to learn about the nocturnal habits of animals and even meet live nocturnal animals up close.  the only catch is that it’s only for big kids, age 4 and older, like me!

20131028-IMG_1976tonight, matthew and i went to the flashlight safari with our daddies.  since sienna is too young, she and mommy stayed and hung out with auntie audrey and baby jeffrey at their house.  mommy had planned to help auntie audrey take care of baby jeffrey, and when we were all playing together, it was fine.  but after matthew and i left, mommy tried to hold baby jeffrey, but sienna threw a fit.  “i don’t want you hold baby”, she pleaded over and over again until mommy handed jeffrey back to auntie audrey.  sienna was tired and cranky, so mommy took her home.  on the way home, sienna kept saying “i don’t want you to hold baby”, and asking “when i turn 4, can i go to safari?”

20131025-IMG_1977meanwhile, matthew and i were walking through the zoo with our flashlights.  we put red films over our flashlights so it wouldn’t hurt the animals’ eyes.  we saw a lemur, a fossa, a peccary, and some other animals that i have never heard of before.  maybe i never heard of those animals before because they’re always sleeping during the daytime when i’m awake.  we had so much fun.

after the zoo tour, we went into a classroom where the lights were on.  i was pretty much ready to leave as soon as we had turned off our flashlights off, but we stayed to meet a skunk and an owl.  i especially liked the owl because i used to be an owl at my school, but it definitely was not as cool as walking around the zoo with flashlights.

daddy said that the flashlight safari is probably more appropriate for older kids who would be interested in the information that the tour guide shared.  but still, he was underwhelmed by the few animals that we got to see.  in a nutshell, he wouldn’t go back again.  so i guess when sienna turns 4, mommy will have to take her to the flashlight safari.  sienna hasn’t stopped talking about it.

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sienna is 2 1/4 years old

Posted by kyden on Monday Oct 21, 2013 Under Uncategorized

20131021-1E7A3555sienna is 2 1/4 years old.   here’s what she’s been up to these days.

daily schedule:

  • 7:30am: wake up.  she crawls into bed with mommy and daddy, usually about 15 minutes before i get there.  when she hears me coming, she lies right on top of mommy so that i can’t get near her.
  • 7:45am: sienna picks out her outfit for the day, and she has VERY strong opinions about what she wants to wear.  it’s almost always a skirt or dress.
  • 8:00am: breakfast
  • 8:30am: off to school.  daddy usually drops us off at school these days.
  • 1:00pm:  we have nap time at school every day.  sienna naps every day for about 2 hours.
  • 5:30pm: mommy picks us up from school.  but when we have gym class, we leave school at around 3:15pm.
  • 7:15pm: dinner.
  • 8:00pm: shower or bath.  if we can take a bath, change into PJs and brush our teeth before 8:30pm, we get to watch one show.  lately, we have been watching daniel tiger or curious george.
  • 9:00pm: lights out.  mommy or daddy covers her with 2 1/2 blankets, and then sings a song to her.  you read that right — 2 1/2 blankets.  she insists on having 2 blankets over her, and then 1 blanket that covers her only from the knees down.  weird girl.

things she’s good at:

  • speaking in complete sentences.
  • remembering and singing song lyrics.  she sings on pitch, too (unlike me).
  • going to sleep by herself.  at bedtime, mommy or daddy sing songs to sienna, and (most of the time) they can leave the room while she’s still asleep.  sienna talks and sings to herself (or maybe to her stuffed animals?) until she falls asleep, and usually stays in bed until morning.

things she’s working on:

  • using the potty.  sienna is really good at using the potty at school, but that’s probably because they take her to the potty every 2 hours.  at home, mommy and daddy take her if she says she needs to go, but they aren’t proactive about encouraging it.  remember when sienna was asking to go potty every 15 minutes?  i’m pretty sure mommy and daddy un-potty-trained  her because they are lazy.
  • counting.  it’s not so much that she’s working on counting, but more that she’s just not very good at it.  she usually counts 1, 2, 3, 4, 9, 5, 6, 7, 8, and then some random jumble of numbers after that.  when i was her age, i was good at counting to 10.  maybe i should work on it with her.
  • she can climb into her car seat by herself, but she still needs help aligning the buckle to snap it together.

things that make her laugh:

  • washing her hands under the spray faucet in the kitchen sink.  it tickles her hands and makes her giggle like a little girl.  oh wait.  i guess that means it makes her giggle like… herself.
  • tickle torture.  she screams and fake-protests, but when she gets free, she says “do it again!  do it again!”
  • saying silly things.  for school photos last week, the photographer asked her to say “stinky feet” which sienna thought was HILARIOUS.  sienna talked about it all day.  “i said ‘stinky feet’ today!”

things she does that do NOT make mommy and dada laugh:

  • hitting me.  sometimes, sienna hits me for no reason.  she doesn’t hit her friends — only me.  maybe it’s because when she was a baby and she hit me on accident, i never hit her back.  but now that she’s bigger and hits me on purpose sometimes, i still don’t hit her back.  maybe i should start.
  • resisting eating her vegetables.  sienna will eat green vegetables if they are cooked in something tasty (like a sauce), but if they are just steamed, she will eat around them.  she’ll end up with a bowl full of nothing but veggies, and then the drama queen will come out: “i need heeeelp”.  it’s ridiculous because she insists on doing everything else by herself and she can obviously eat rice, meat, and fruit just fine.  she eventually finishes her vegetables, but only after dropping some on the floor, dropping her spoon a bunch of times, and whining and complaining through the whole thing.  it’s a production, really.
  • not being a good listener.  sometimes, she does the opposite of what she knows she’s supposed to do.  just because.  like, when we’re leaving school at the end of the day, sienna will stop before the door, and refuse to move.  or when mommy is trying to put lotion on her after bathtime, she’ll run away to the opposite corner of the room.  hopefully these are just her terrible 2’s and that it’s just a phase.

favorite indoor activities:

  • reading books.  it doesn’t matter if a grown up reads to her, if i read to her, or if she just reads to herself.  sienna loves books.
  • the “bancy beam” (balance beam) at gym class. we only have class on fridays, but she talks about the “bancy beam” all week long.
  • helping out in the kitchen — making daddy’s diet coke with the soda stream, operating the blender to make smoothies and apple/pear sauce, etc.  she’s even happy just watching mommy cook.  she pulls up the stepstool to the counter and asks “can i watch you, mommy?”

favorite outdoor activities:

  • slides
  • swimming.  i didn’t think anyone could like swimming as much as i do, but sienna definitely does.
  • playing in our backyard.  golf, basketball, tee-ball, it doesn’t matter.  she just likes to run and play.

favorite book:  i’m not sure that she have a favorite book because she reads so many different ones all the time.  but lately, she’s been choosing “finding nemo” a lot.

favorite song:  “B-I-N-G-O”.  i don’t believe it, but that’s what she says.  i think she likes it because she just learned it (i taught it to her).

favorite iphone app:  she doesn’t use iphones.

favorite sayings:

  • “i want to wear a skirt today”, almost every morning while picking out her outfit
  • “i wanna do it by myself”, in reference to everything
  • “mommy, i see a cow outside my window!”.  that’s not actually her favorite saying (although she does enjoy cow-spotting), but the first time she said it we were all stunned.  sienna’s vocab, sentence structure, and grammar are so much better than mine were at her age.

favorite foods that she’s only allowed a little bit of:  jello.  she understands that most yummy junk foods will make her itchy, so she’s pretty good about not asking to eat them.

favorite characters:  minnie mouse, abby cadabby

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lions, tigers, and bears… meh

Posted by kyden on Sunday Oct 20, 2013 Under Uncategorized

when sienna and i heard that we were going to the zoo, we were super excited.  sienna said we were going to see elephants and lions.  i said that we were going to see bunnies and ducks.  everyone thought i was being silly.

we met20131020-IMG_1935 up with isaac, isabelle, and abby at the oakland zoo.  apparently, it wasn’t an original idea because we also ran into a few other friends there.  madison was there with her friend, and we also saw zoe and ava.  it was isaac, isabelle, and abby’s first time at the zoo, so they were really excited to see all the animals.  sienna liked seeing the animals too, but she was also just enjoying the scenery.  she kept looking around and saying “so pretty, so pretty.”  i, on the other hand, had no interest in looking at the giraffes or zebras or any other animals.  i just wanted to go to the children’s zoo area to play in the playground.

20131020-IMG_1940after we said hi to all the big animals, we finally made it to the children’s zoo area.  there are smaller animals in that part of the zoo, like pigs and alligators and bunnies.  (see, there really are bunnies at the zoo!)  isaac and i headed straight for the playground.

20131020-IMG_1938while isaac and i climbed around, abby and sienna got their hands painted.  the face-painter was really talented.  mommy and sienna watched as she painted a really beautifully detailed giraffe on some other girl, so they were excited to see  what she would do with abby’s butterfly and sienna’s ladybug.  they were not impressed.  let’s just say that i could have done better.  what the heck?  mommy joked that since the face painter works on donations, mommy’s donation must not have been big enough.

after more than an hour of playing, we all met up at the wildlife theatre.  there wasn’t a performance going on, but the stadium steps made for a perfect place for all of us kids to run wild.  that was the best part of our day.

mommy said that we aren’t going to go to the zoo anymore.  we’ll just go to a park, since all i wanted to do was play in the playground and i couldn’t care less about the animals anyway.  i protested, saying that i didn’t want to go to just any park — i particularly like the playground at the oakland zoo.  mommy’s not buying it.  i think she’s still bitter about the first time we went to that zoo and i dropped her sunglasses into the tiger’s den.

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pimple or MRSA?

Posted by kyden on Thursday Oct 17, 2013 Under sienna

20131017-IMG_1968sienna has been getting zits for the past few weeks.  the current one is right in the middle of her forehead.  see it?  she got her first one right after my birthday party, and we didn’t know what it was.  we thought it might be some irritation caused by the new sunscreen that we used that weekend.  (it was all organic and had no chemical sunblocks, but it made me and mommy itchy.)  her school even wrote up an incident report about it because they thought it might be some sort of injury.  well, that bump was on her right cheek, and it was still there last week for our school photos.  i wonder if they photoshop school pictures for preschoolers.

as soon as that cheek zit went away, a new one appeared on her forehead.  that’s when we became convinced that they were zits.  so mommy googled “pimple on 2 year old” and guess what.  almost all of the results were about other parents who thought their kids had pimples but it ended up being MRSA.  MRSA???  aaack!  where’s my cleanroom suit?!

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love means nothing

Posted by kyden on Tuesday Oct 15, 2013 Under Uncategorized

do you know why you should never fall for a tennis player? because love means nothing to a tennis player. that’s a joke that mommy told me but i don’t get it.

anyway, one of the presents i got for my birthday was a tennis racquet and some low-compression balls.  i immediately took them to the backyard and  started playing golf with them.  mommy showed me how to swing the tennis racquet properly — a left-handed forehand (obviously, since i’m left-handed).  but even though i was making decent contact, i wanted to switch.  i was more comfortable swinging righty.

after just a few minutes of hitting around in the backyard, i was hooked.  mommy asked me if i wanted to take tennis classes, and of course i said yes!  but the problem is that tennis class is the same time as my basketball class.  so no more basketball for now.

20131015-IMG_1898today was my first tennis class.  the other kids in my class started their lessons last month, so i had a lot of catching up to do.  i got one-on-one coaching, which i thought was pretty cool, but mommy did not like my coach.  (that’s another story for another time.)  it’s a good thing that this is only a 4-week class.  after that, i’m going drop this class and get private lessons from auntie judy.  she doesn’t know it yet.  😛

i could tell you about what a natural i am and how great i did on my first day, and you might believe me if you were just looking at the photo.  but if you watch the video, you’ll get the real story.  mommy always tells me that i have trouble keeping my eye on the ball and my coach said the same thing.  it’s doesn’t matter — i still love tennis.  tennis is my new favorite sport, tied with swimming.  and if you know how much i love swimming, you know that that’s saying a lot.

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toothpaste saved my life

Posted by kyden on Sunday Oct 13, 2013 Under Uncategorized

i spent the past week transitioning from the owls to the eagles class at school. the first day, i only spent a few hours in the eagles. but that afternoon, all my stuff got moved into my new cubby in the eagles class. on day 2, i got dropped off in the eagles class and then stayed in there full time. (not much of a transition, huh?) that morning was rough, and i cried when daddy dropped me off. but after that, i did great and now i love being an eagle. so it’s official. i’m a pre-K eagle.

20131014-IMG_1885now that i’m in a new classroom, miss gina and miss kiran (the owls teachers) aren’t my teachers anymore. so today, i made cards for them telling them that i liked the snacks they gave me and that i hope i can still visit them. mommy had lined the dining table with scratch paper so that i wouldn’t get it dirty with glue and glitter and markers, but after making two cards, i got really messy and lazy and tired of writing. so as i was signing my name, i drew on the table with permanent marker. repeatedly. i won’t bore you with the details about why i was using a permanent marker, but i will tell you that mommy was SO MAD. she thought i did it on purpose.

mommy tried to clean the table with soap and water. that didn’t work. that made her more mad. she tried the special wood cleaner that we usually use. that didn’t work either. so she got even more mad. she was getting more and more upset by the minute. so what to do? she turned to the wisdom of the internet, of course. there were a bunch of suggestions on the internet — one of them was toothpaste. so she gave it a try. lucky for me, it worked. it took the pen marks right off the table and didn’t appear to damage the finish. whew! mommy’s blood stopped boiling almost immediately.

thank you, toothpaste. you saved my life.

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Posted by kyden on Sunday Oct 13, 2013 Under Uncategorized

1E7A3447i can’t wait for halloween to come.   for weeks, i’ve been talking about wanting to go to a pumpkin patch with a maze.   and every time we drive by a house with halloween decorations, i get really excited.  “look!  they’re having halloween at their house!”  so this weekend, we got ready for halloween.

1E7A3489on saturday, we went to a nearby pumpkin patch with cousin zoey.  she took us to G&M farms, a place in livermore that she goes to every year.  we liked this pumpkin patch a lot.  they have all the usual stuff (corn maze, cow train, pony rides, etc.), but the coolest part was the hay maze, corn pit, and the playground.  yup, there’s a playground right in the middle of the farm.  cool, huh?

first, we hit the hay maze.  i brought my maze map (do you see it in my hand in one of the photos?), but it still look us a really long time to find the exit.  mommy said that she made a starbucks run while we were making our way out, but i think she was just being super silly.

IMG_1868the corn pit was the best.  we had never heard of a corn pit before!  sienna and i buried ourselves in corn kernels, and then cousin zoey and i made corn angels.  cousin zoey loved the corn pit.  sienna and i liked it too (me, more so than sienna), but we got hungry so we went to go find some food.  cousin zoey refused to leave.  i think she is going to live in there forever.  as we were getting out of the pit, we heard a lady say that there were a ton of corn kernels in her underwear.  gross!

on our way out of the pumpkin patch, we said hi to a mama cow, a baby cow, and a couple of llamas.  and of course, we had to stop at the playground so that sienna could go down the slide and i could play on the digger.

we didn’t even have time to ride on the cow train or the ponies but it was still super fun.  and we picked up a couple of overpriced pumpkins to complete the decorations for our house.  here are more photos from our day at the pumpkin patch.

today (sunday), we put up our halloween decoration.  we have a giant spider web, some giant spiders, spider icicle lights, a giant plastic jack-o-lantern, and of course, the pumpkins that we got from the pumpkin patch yesterday.  now, we are having halloween at our house.  we are halloween-ready!  come trick-or-treating at our house so you can see all of our decorations.  i promise that we won’t give you the melted chocolates from my birthday party pinata.

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