Friday, October 26, 2012

5 years old

My baby boy turned five last Wednesday.  Try as I may, I can't keep him little anymore.  What a fun, sweet little guy we have.

Our morning started off with a little drama... we dropped Chloe off at school, then had to make a very tense trip to the gas station as we were almost completely out of gas.  Our gas indicator in the van said we had zero miles until empty... if I haven't put in a little of our lawn mower gas, I'm pretty sure we would have ran out of gas on the way to the station.  A little adrenaline rush for the day.

When we got home, he helped me make his birthday cupcakes.

Licking the beater!

Later that morning, Mitch was a champ to go play at a friend's house while I did my visiting teaching. 
It was a nice, sunny day and since he had no school that day, he spent the entire afternoon outside playing with the neighbor boy.  Mitch could play outside all day- he does it any chance he gets (rain or shine).

When Ben got home from work, he opened his gifs.

His new Tom & Jerry shirt from me and Ben.  He loves Tom & Jerry.

Mitch was on one during his gift opening.  He kept cracking one liners and being silly and animated while he opened his gifts.

His audience thought he was hilarious.

 His current favorite obsession- baseball!  Can't wait to sign him up for T-ball this spring.

Angry Bird flickers- a favorite among all the kids.

He got some great gifts and loved them all.

After gifts, we loaded up and headed off to Red Robin to cash in on Mitch's free birthday meal.  I had coupons for all the kids to get a free meal that night (thanks to our dentist!)

After dinner, we headed straight to Chloe's soccer practice.  Mitch brought his new bat and baseball and played with Ben.

 Staring down the pitcher

This kid has a good little batter stance, a great swing on him, and can HIT the ball.  I love baseball and love that my son does too.

On our way back to the car after practice (in the pitch dark), the birthday boy darted in front of a moving car.  Luckily, there was no accidents and no one got hurt, but it scared Ben and I and after scolding Mitchell for making a bad choice, we had a grumpy birthday boy on our hands and a frazzled set of parents.  After a good little talk at home, we carried on with the fun.

Baseball mitt birthday cake. 

He even wore his baseball shirt for his birthday! 

Blowing out his "5" candle.  Is he really 5?

The week of his birthday was Mitch's "Star Student" week at school.

  He got to fill out this "All About Me" poster.  His teacher hung it up at school.  He was also permitted to bring to school things that describe him and put it on a shelf underneath the poster.  Mitch chose to take a pirate telescope (he loves pirates), his Buzz Lightyear and Woody action figures, a football, and his current favorite book titled "Pirates Don't Change Diapers."

Some of the questions on his "All About Me" poster were:

*When I grow up I would like to be..."A missionary for my church"
*Favorite color: "Green & orange"
*Favorite animal: "Tiger & lion" (he loves making tiger noises/growls)
*Favorite Food: "pizza"
Favorite Book: "Pirates Don't Change Diapers" by David Shannon
Favorite Sport: "Baseball"
Favorite Thing to do in school: "Recess" (he also loves math and numbers)
Favorite Thing to do at home: "Play outside with my friends"

3 Super-cool facts about Mitchell:

1. "I was a pirate for Halloween last year.  I love pirates."
2.  "I'm going to be Spiderman this year for Halloween."
3.  "I can ride a 2-wheeler bike without training wheels.  It's a big red bike."

He got to share this poster with his class, and tell about all the toys he brought to school.

As another fun treat for his special Star Student week, we got to bring in our puppies to show his class. Mitch was pretty excited.  He has made a lot of cute little friends in class and he was so excited to be in charge of something and show all his friends the pups.  Ben got to come with us, which was extra special!
Mitch and his new buddy Jackson (he talks about Jackson all the time).

 We passed the pups around to the kids and they all took turns holding them.  A few of the moms were there that morning volunteering in the classroom and they were even more excited than the kids about the puppies.

Mitch finally got his turn to hold a pup- I made him be the last one.

After everyone had a turn holding a puppy, Mitchell and Ben and I sat at the front of the room and Mitch got to call on kids to ask questions about the pups.  Their questions were cute and Mitch felt pretty special calling on his friends (and teacher).

 Mitch was excited to wear his Tom & Jerry shirt that same week.  He also loves the flashlight Grandma and Papa Blakeslee sent!

3 and 4 years old seem to be a hard age in the Andros house.  As Mitch has neared 5, he has started to outgrow that rough stage.  He is such a sweetheart and a helpful boy.  I sure love this kid.

Right before we went to Disneyland in September, Mitch had an eye check up.  We try to do one every year to make sure everything is in tip top shape.  We have a terrible family history of severe eye problems, so we have to keep a close "eye" on things.  He checked out great this year and was even a champ about getting drops in his eyes to dilate his pupils.  He couldn't hardly see a thing for the rest of the day, but it didn't slow him down much.

 This boy loves to be outside.  I can hardly keep him indoors.  We have had some rainy and 45 degree days here lately and that doesn't stop him from being outdoors for hours.  He is also a sweetie to play with his little sisters.

He's just a handsome little guy.  I love his red hair and the little freckles he gets in the summer.  I love his cute little teeth (I'm not ready for him to start losing them yet).  I love how red and flushed his face gets when he's been playing outside in the summer.  I love his little speech impediment and how he can't quite say his R's yet.  I love that he still loves to give hugs and kisses.  I love that his daddy is his best buddy.  I love that he loves to be active and be outdoors.  I love that he has a tender heart.  I love my Mitch man.  

 He loves pirates.  I guess if he ever has to get an eye removed, he'll probably be totally ok with it. (ha).

 He wants to be just like his daddy.  He loves to shave with Ben on Sunday mornings, loves to be a big boy and shower like dad.  He loves to do his hair like dad- wets it down, puts gel in it and combs it out or spikes it.  Last Spring, he put on a button up shirt like Ben wears to work and found some pens to put in his pocket, "just like dad." 

 He goes through phases where he doesn't like hats, but then when he does like hats.  I think he looks adorable in a hat.

 This little boy spends more time on the floor than anyone I know.  When we go shopping, he is constantly playing, sliding and crawling all over the dirty floors.  At home, he runs and then jumps onto his knees to slide all over the kitchen floors and outside on the grass and driveway.  It's no wonder we go through jeans like crazy.  One of the most common phrases heard at our house is "Mitch, get up off the floor" or "Quit sliding on your knee!  You're going to ruin your pants!"  Maybe that's why he had no interest in walking until 18 months- he really, really loves the floor!

 My little Mitchy 5 years ago.  Wasn't he sweet?

He was the sweetest baby there ever was (with the reddest skin I've ever seen in this picture-wow!)

 Happy 5 years to the best little red headed boy.  Love you, buddy. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Friday Flashback

When we got back this morning from dropping Chloe off at school, the twins quickly took their shoes off and immediately started climbing onto the open shelves of our bookcase.  Before I could scold them to get off before they broke something, I quickly ran and got my camera.  The two of them on the shelves took me back to 3 years ago when they had this same shot taken during their newborn shoot.




Were they really ever that small?  (And still?)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Twins' 3 year pictures and update

Being their birthday month, the girls had their annual well child check.  This year, for the first time, they also had their very first eye exam.  2 (almost 3) might seem young for an eye exam, but with our family history of eye problems (especially after Chloe's eye problem at such a young age), we would rather be safe than sorry.  Detection early is best!

A few days before their birthday, they went to the ophthalmologist.  They are very familiar with this office- Chloe and Mitch have both been in for exams within the past 3 weeks. 

Being silly in the waiting room!

Back in the exam room, sharing a chair.  They didn't both stay in the chair for their exams, but it was cute for a quick picture.

The nurse did a quick eye test with them- instead of reading off letters like big kids and adults do, they had to tell what the picture was (ex: duck, cake, hand, etc).  Leah knew all of them and breezed right through them.  Lexi didn't seem to understand and couldn't name off any pictures.  I was a little worried.

Then the nurse gave them drops in their eyes to dilate their pupils so the doctor could examine their actual eye easier.  They hated the drops.  Both of them cried and screamed. 

Back out to the waiting room to wait for their pupils to dilate.

Then back in to see the doctor- finally!  They had calmed down by then and did great for him.  He is so good with kids.

Leah looked great he said- absolutely no problems.

I was worried about Lexi, as she couldn't (or wouldn't) name off any of the pictures.  Luckily, her only issue was a little bit of astigmatism, which the doctor said wasn't even an issue right now.  Whew!

After being tortured by the eye drops and for being big girls, I got them a treat at Target while I did some shopping.  (The eye drops keep your eyes dilated for the entire day, which makes your vision very blurry.  Lexi said in a pleasant voice on the way home, "Mom, I can't see very well."  How annoying would that be?)

They entertained themselves in the dressing room well.  Leah styled Lexi's hair.  It was hilarious.

For lunch, we stopped by Wendy's.  It was just as much of a treat for me as it was for them- I hadn't eaten all day and had gotten a migraine while shopping.  They were so cute and chatted happily with a lady sitting behind us, telling her all about their ice cream and whatever else they could think of.

A few days after their birthday, they had their 3 year well child checks.

Weight: 28 lbs 4 ounces
Height: 37 1/8 inches

Weight:31 lbs 4 ounces
Height: 36 3/4 inches

The nurse didn't put their percentages like she usually does, but Leah is around 25% and Lexi around 50%, just like they have been since they were tiny babies.  What we find the most interesting about their current stats is that they weigh less than or the same as Chloe did at one year old.  Chloe was 30 lbs at one year and although I don't have a height recorded for her at one, her height at 2 years was 36 inches.   Chloe was the size of an average or small 3 year old when she was one.  We knew she was a big girl- there was no mistaking that.  We find it fascinating the comparison between the twins and Chloe (and Mitch too, for that matter.  He was a big baby as well).

The girls are really into the puppies right now.  Every chance they get, they go out back and play with them.  I have to keep a careful on on things- they sometimes get a little too mischievous with those pups.  I looked out back one day to see all 9 puppies piled on the kids' plastic play table.  They were scared to death!

Leah loves to just sit with them.

This day, she was obsessed with trying to cover them with her blanket. 

Leah has become my little "wait until the last minute to go to the bathroom" girl.  It's gotten pretty bad.  She will go around "holding" herself, making it obvious that she desperately needs to go, and then will refuse to stop for 2 minutes and run in and use the bathroom.  It can be kind of embarrassing in public.

These girls love the iPad.

At least they are kind enough to share it with friends!

We recently got some 3 year pictures taken of them.  The good thing about them being older and getting their pictures taken is they will hold still without a fight and will smile on demand.  The bad thing about this age is that a lot of the smiles are forced and fake.  Still cute though.

We picked a gorgeous day to get pictures taken.  And with all the fall colors and two sweet, cooperative little girls, we got some great shots.

Gotta love the fake smile!

We thought this one was hilarious- she wrapped her leg around the tree.

We will try a kissing one every year for as long as we can!

TWO forced smiles. Lexi's looks like a grimace.

Some of my favorite things about the girls right now:

*They love playing house together.  One of them is "Mom" and the other is "Dad."  Just a few days ago, I overheard them telling each other "Ok, I'm going to a meeting and then we can go to the temple."  They sure do pick up on what goes on around this house.  Just today, they pretended, as "Mom" and "Dad" to go on an airplane together.  They were packing their bags (I saw Leah gathering up their underwear to pack), and then Lexi said, "We will get to drink juice on the airplane." 

*They are so good for babysitters these days.  I remember when they were little and Leah would usually cry the entire time I was gone.  It was so hard to leave her and I felt so bad for my friends and babysitters who would watch her for any period of time.  I remember picking her up from a friend's house and my friend was holding Leah in one hand, who was still fussing, and Lexi in the other hand (who had gotten sad when Leah started to cry) and my friend's baby was sitting on the floor.  She told me Leah and cried pretty much the whole time.  That was a hard stage.  Now, both of them are just fine with me leaving them at people's houses, and do great for babysitters.  I love it!

*They love to be the "good" sister.  If one of them is crying or throwing a fit about something, I will talk to her about why it's not ok to throw a tantrum, etc.  The other twin, who wasn't doing that, will come over to me and say, "I wasn't crying.  I wasn't doing that."  Or, "I'm being nice, Mom.  I didn't throw my toy."  Awesome.  Good twin, bad twin. :)

*This summer, I stopped napping them on a regular basis.  If I napped them, it would interfere with their bedtime.  I think a lot of it had to do with the fact that there is two of them sharing a room.  Unless they are super tired (not having had a nap), they will play in their room together for hours.  Having an extra person in there to distract them from sleep and entertain them, they would stay up until 9:00 or later- way, way past their bedtime.  So now they only nap if we are going to be out late that evening.  They still nap really great when I let them.  

*One of their favorite things to do when they are supposed to be in bed asleep is to get our of their cribs (Leah gets out of hers, then unzips Lexi's crib tent and lets her out), then get out of their pajamas and get dressed in a new outfit.  Then they just play.  Just 2 nights ago, I heard one of them crying in the middle of the night.  My clock said 4:30 a.m.  I went into their room to find the light on, and both of them fully dressed.  I don't think this has ever happened before, and I hope it never happens again.  I quickly put them back in their pj's and back to bed, and luckily they fell back asleep.  Naughty little monkeys, they are.

*They love books.  All of my kids have, and I'm glad these two are no exception.  I let them each pick one book each at bedtime, and we read the 2 books altogether.  Recently, they have been on a kick of picking the same 2 books every night for weeks.  And weeks.  And weeks.  I miss the days of picking a new book every night.  But it is cute to listen to them quote the book with me.  I'm not surprised they have it memorized- I sure do! 

*I love when they call each other by their nicknames.  Lexi will call Leah "Lee" and Leah will called Lexi "Lucky."  They also know each other's middle names and will call each other by their first and middle names. 

*One of their favorite times of the day is family prayer at night.  They both always want to pray and have the cutest little prayer (and scripture study) voices.  After prayers, we do a family hug, and then we all put our hands together and say "Gooooo Team" as we lift our hands up in the air.  The twins LOVE this and Leah always yells, "Goooo Team Andros!"  They both always like to be touching my hand and get panicked if they don't get it.  They will yell, "I want to be on Mommy's team!" 

*They truly are the best of friends (and can be the worst of enemies at times).  But they never fight for long.  They spend nearly every minute of every day together.  Their relationship is like a marriage- they spend even more time together than Ben and I do.  I can't blame them for an occasional fight.  Can you imagine spending 99% of your day with the same person, doing nearly everything together?  You're bound to disagree and bump heads every now and then.  But they are fiercely loyal to one another.  They will come and tell me when the other one is hurt or sad and don't like it when another person isn't nice to the other.  They love each other and look out for each other.  A little dynamic duo, this pair.  I love watching them grow and learn together.  Being a twin is such a special thing they will always share.

 Here's to another great year girls.  Gooooo Team Leah and Alexis!