Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!

2012 was a great year.
Eliot and Peter officially became buddies this year.  Their facial expressions speak volumes.
Spencer has taught Eliot to play air guitar and he (Eliot) plays it for any and every song he hears.
Peter is the drummer in the Family Band, and has the head of hair to prove it.

We're so thankful for all of our family and friends.  We're looking forward to seeing what 2013 has in store for us all.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Christmas Eve:
Butter tarts, baked.  Cookies, delivered to neighbours.  Gifts, wrapped.  Ham steaks with pineapple sauce, eaten.  Sticky buns, prep'd and in the fridge.  Carols, sung.  T'was the Night Before Christmas, read.  Two sweet little boys, showered and in bed.

Eliot has been excited for Christmas Day for some time now, mainly because he knew that on Christmas Day we would be bringing out the plum pudding which he has been anxious to try.  However, on the morning of the 25th when Eliot and Peter awoke, at their normally scheduled 6:00 am, and walked out into the living room, the plum pudding was completely forgotten.  Santa had arrived!  He'd filled their stockings and left a pool noodle for each of them.  He brought them a little table with chairs, which those clever elves had made to look just like the ones at Ikea.  And he brought them each there very own White Bear from the White Bear Store (craft store).  "I am so happy!"  Eliot exclaimed.  I also overheard him saying, "I love you White Bear."

Peter got right on board with the program.  This year he had no trouble unwrapping his presents and was delighted with his new books, taking a break from the gift opening to have a read.

Helping Daddy figure out the rules to his new board game.

Both boys enjoyed getting in some train time with some new pieces from Uncle Hugo's stash.

Today was the first of several very hot days coming our way, so I decided to keep things simple for Christmas dinner.  Eating a heavy meal, let alone cooking a heavy meal, in this heat wasn't going to add to anyone's Christmas cheer.  Besides, it gave us more time at the beach!

Eliot and I took to the water for a swim.  We're the ones in the middle.  You can't miss us because Eliot's the one in the bright yellow life vest and I'm crouched down beside him.  He loved it, even though the water was saltier than potato chips.

We stopped for ice cream on the way home.

I love how involved Eliot got this year.  He got very excited about taking cookies to our neighbours and had fun wishing them a Merry Christmas.  And it was a very Merry Christmas.  Hope yours was as well!

PS  Here's the plum pudding that Eliot was so excited about.  We bought it at the grocery store earlier in the week, so all we had to do was steam it, pour on the sauce and plop on the cherry.  Easiest Christmas dinner dessert I've ever made.

Saturday, December 22, 2012


This year we made it to Spencer's work Christmas party.  It was held on the University of Western Australia campus in a place called the Sunken Garden.  It was a great venue for children: outside, but relatively confined.

They had a clown to entertain the children.  Eliot wasn't exactly sure what to think, but joined in the dancing anyway.

This was Peter's reaction to the clown.

Santa made an appearance and "brought" gifts for the children.

Santa brought bubbles for Eliot and a car for Peter.  Does he know these boys, or what!  :)

Friday, December 21, 2012

Mr. Mayor

Several months ago, I was giving the boys a shower and things were getting crazy.  I called out to Spencer, "Come help!  It's Maniac City in here!"  Spencer came quickly and asked Eliot, "Are you the mayor of Maniac City?"  And that's how it all got started.  From that moment on, Eliot was Mr. Mayor and Peter was Mr. Deputy Mayor--or as Eliot says, Mr. Defany Mayor.  For a time, the nickname took such hold of Eliot's imagination that he refused to be addressed by anything but Mr. Mayor, which (thanks to diminishing returns) started to get annoying.  Fortunately, the novelty has worn off and it has become a fun little nickname that we use now and then.  Eliot still gets a kick out of it.

Our Mr. Mayor is doing well.  For the most part he is a great Big Brother.  He tries to teach Peter words, and is quick to remind him to share.

He loves to help with everything, whether it's mixing cookie dough or "fixing" a fan that broke down.

He's getting pretty independent.  Peter has been waking up in the night lately--I blame molars coming in--and the other day I was absolutely exhausted.  Eliot didn't fall asleep for an afternoon nap so I went in to get him, and ended up crashing on his bed (Peter naps in our bedroom).  Eliot enjoyed putting Mommy down for a nap and closed the door on his way out.  I could hear him out there talking to his stuffed animals, "D'you wanna read dis book?  Sh'we do dat?"  When I came out, this is what I found:

He loves to have books read to him.  For a while he and I were working our way through Little House on the Prairie.  We read a chapter each night and he really enjoyed it.  Lately he has been interested in learning the French words for things and enjoys telling me that he and Peter look out "lafnet" ( his pronunciation of the word for 'window') for Daddy to come home.  Which, in fact, they do.

Our apartment overlooks the mailboxes and Spencer always checks the mail when he arrives home.  The sound of the little metal door shutting is like a bell going off for Pavlov's dog.  Eliot and Peter will hurry to the window, climb up on chairs, and shout 'hello' to Daddy.  I'm not going to lie, it's pretty adorable.

Recently he has taken to calling me 'Mum-mum' and he uses it whenever he addresses me, "Where are we going, Mum-mum?"  "Is this water cold, Mum-mum?"  It's not clear to me how this got started, and I'm not sure how long it will last.  But it's pretty cute, so I try not to draw attention to it lest he become self-conscious and drop it.
He's just a delight, and we love him so much!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The strong, silent type

Until recently, Peter's communications have been limited to smiles, squeals, and screams.  However, in the last month or so he has acquired several new words.  If I had to identify one First Word, it would have to be "this".  As in, "what's this?"  But since then he has also started saying, bye, truck (tuk), duck (sounds a lot like 'truck' so you really depend on context, also, any bird is a duck), bus, bear (bay-uh), these, and cheese.  Those last two also sound a lot alike and share the darling 's' sound, where Peter bites his tongue to create a cute little lisp.  You can see this in the picture above where he's saying "cheese" for the camera.

He loves his showers and is still an avid tooth brusher.

Peter has discovered puddles and will stomp in them whenever he can.

He insisted on toting the bag of books on a recent trip to the library.

Peter's favourite book right now is "Rhyming Dust Bunnies" by Jan Thomas.  We've had it since Eliot was a baby and it's the first non-board book that Peter's really been into, and he just loves it.  It's a cute little book with a nice moral about the value of whistle-blowers.

Nothing like a story with Daddy, straight after a shower.  You can guess what book they're reading.

Peter's a pretty good sport when it comes to being the Little Brother.  The other day I heard giggles and found Eliot dragging Peter across the floor by his ankles.  Everyone looked happy so I let it play out.  Eliot dragged him all the way into the bathroom where they then proceeded to pull diapers off the shelf.  Those boys!

We sure do love our Mr. Boo!