Thursday, February 27, 2014

Backseat Driver

I am currently living with a literal backseat driver.

My little man of the law is quick to tell me all sorts of traffic rules these days:

-"Mommy, you aren't supposed to go.  The light is red."  
-"Palmer, I am allowed to turn right on red."
-"No, mommy.  You need to stop until it's green."

"Mommy, you didn't stop all the way at that stop sign." (In my defense, there is a new stop sign in the neighborhood that I'm not quite used to yet.)

"Mommy, you are going too fast."

"Mommy, you are going too slow."

"Mommy, don't crash into that car.  We don't want to get close and get into an accident and then need a tow truck."

Today I even caught myself saying back, "Palmer, I don't want to talk about cars and driving anymore."

His response, "Why can't we talk about cars?  I like them."

Sheesh.

-Bethany

Sunday, February 23, 2014

A Dog Party!

Palmer has been a big fan of the book, Go Dog Go, for a long time.  When my mom got wind that the stage version was coming to the Dallas Children's Theater, she bought tickets for Christmas.

In the book, the dogs go to a "dog party" up in a tree.  Palmer has been so excited to go to the "dog party" for two months and couldn't believe it was finally here.

Donned with party hats, Palmer dressed all of his dogs in anticipation of the show.
At the theater, Gram and Paw Paw were ready for the occasion.
Rick and I got the full report from Palmer after the show: 

"There weren't real dogs in the show."
"The party wasn't really up in a tree- it was on a stage."
and
"It was so much fun!"

Thanks, Gram and Paw Paw for building memories.

-Bethany

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Ski Bunny

Ever since our time in Park City, Utah last summer, Palmer has been itching to get on his own skis.  Rick and I try to ski annually, so we were glad to introduce him to a favorite sport of ours.

Given that I am six months pregnant and not skiing this time, Palmer has never been on skis before, and Rick had an itch to "get on the open road", we settled for a low-key ski trip in Taos this year.

We kept remarking on how much we enjoyed driving to our vacation.  Almost all of our trips always revolve around a flight and we loved the flexibility and freedom of leaving whenever we wanted, going wherever we wanted, and stopping wherever we wanted.  In fact, we made a little out-of-the-way pit stop in the lovely town of Santa Fe on the way home.  Because we could.  But, I digress.

Palmer wanted to jump on skis the minute we arrived.  We quickly checked out the wonderful Children's Center and got him fitted for skis and boots and registered for the next day's ski school session.
Palmer didn't want to wait for ski school the next day (and neither did his father), so we took him outside to practice for the first time on skis.

You can see for yourself that he did great from the very first try and absolutely loved it:
video
The next morning, Palmer and I went into the ski school to check him in.  My crazy little independent guy turned to me at the outdoor steps and said, "I'm fine, mommy.  I don't need you to go inside."  I was like, "Nice try, buddy.  We have to buy your ticket and find your room."  (Sheesh.  What is kindergarten morning going to look like??)
Lucky for me, we rented a condo that overlooked the Children's Center and ski area.  I happily bounced back to our condo, made some hot chocolate, and spied on the lessons.  My views:
Palmer is the littlest red jacket towards the back:
video
We got into quite a daily routine (during our short stay).  The boys packed up to ski in the morning.  Rick went out on the harder runs while Palmer was in school.  I cooked lunch in the condo and did this for the rest of the morning:
After lunch, the guys went back out for some father-son lessons.  Don't they look intimidating?
I had a lot of fun being their official photographer.
Our evenings consisted of dinner at home, building a fire, and watching the Olympics.  The timing of the Olympics was a lot of fun because we could show Palmer the other skiers at night.
A few take-away thoughts:

1.  There is nothing worse than getting a child all the way dressed in ski clothes and then hearing, "I have to go potty!"

2.  Who invented children's gloves?  They are the worst things in the world to a) get on and b) stay on.

3.  Conversation with Palmer one morning:
Me: "Palmer, what will you do at ski school today?"
Palmer: "I will ski really fast"
Me: "Palmer, you should learn how to stop"
Palmer: "That's okay mommy.  I just fall at the bottom and my teacher will come and get me."

4.  The best rain boots in the world also make the best snow boots when outfitted with a boot liner.
And finally, after three days of lessons and practice, here's what we learned: Palmer likes to ski fast and has no idea how to stop:
video
video

-Bethany

Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Big Texan

We couldn't help ourselves.  On our drive to Taos, New Mexico last week, we decided to hit up one of the Texas Panhandle's biggest tourist traps: The Big Texan in Amarillo, TX.

You may have seen this place on The Travel Channel's Man vs Food. We had.  And after driving six hours, we couldn't wait to stretch our legs and bellies on a steak dinner.

The Big Texan is known for its steak challenge: "If you can eat a 72 oz steak, you can have it for free."
We passed on the challenge and stuck to splitting our 12 oz filet between the three of us, but we did enjoy the spectacle of watching a group of Aussies try to finish their challenging meal.  The rules: you have to eat a 72 oz steak, salad, baked potato, and roll with butter within 60 minutes. If you throw up, you lose.  If you can't finish, you owe the restaurant $72.
As you can imagine, Palmer was VERY interested in watching the food competitors and told us he was going to compete when he got bigger.  (I don't doubt this!)
Meanwhile, we enjoyed the over-the-top, stereotypically-Texan pit stop.  Every employee donned cowboy hats and boots.  There were fake cowboy statues all over the place and the walls were filled with animal heads.  It was the perfect stop after a long day of driving.

Palmer and I practiced our rifle shooting on the way out.
And back on the road, we headed for Taos.  Palmer was SUCH a good sport in the car.  Between a stack of movies in the DVD player, the iPad, books, and sleeping, Palmer really did spectacular during the 12-hours out and 12-hours back to Texas.
-Bethany

Friday, February 7, 2014

Preschool Madness

So, this happened earlier this week.

Palmer's school doesn't have part-time infant care, just full-time.  Since we only need part-time care for Baby Girl, I camped out in my car overnight for a new preschool.

The good news is my efforts were worth it and Baby Girl got an infant spot on the same days Palmer will be in school down the road.  Ridiculous.

-Bethany