Wednesday, August 29, 2012

a little bit about jeff

{this post contains pictures of a snake...just so you know}
it started when micah turned 5. 
"mama, can i please get a pet snake?"
to which i would reply, "we will talk about it when you turn 7." 
honestly, i only said that because i thought two years in the life of a kid would seem like for.ever. 
i thought for sure he would forget all about it.  what i didn't count on, however, was that A. he is a boy and B. he loves all things creepy crawly which probably could be traced back to point A. weeks leading up to his birthday he would ask, "mama, can i please get a pet snake?" to which i would still reply "we will talk about it when you turn 7." though i found myself saying it this time, hoping I could forget about it. something got inside of me though...and it had really got me thinking when matt and i had this conversation a while back. i began having conversations with people about this snake...i asked my friend ashlea about it because she has a friend who used to work at the zoo with snakes. i asked her if she would ask him what he thought the best kind of snake for micah to start off with would be. he suggested a corn snake. both of micah's grandparents were sending money this year and the pieces of the puzzle seemed to be coming together. so one night a week or so before micah's birthday i had a talk with matt about the snake. 
it went something like this.  
me - "i've been thinking about it alot and i think it's ok if micah gets a snake for his birthday."
matt - "what did you just say?"
me - sighing - "i've been thinking about it alot and i think it is ok if we get micah the pet snake that he wants for his birthday. we have money from the grandparents and if it stays in the garage, i think it will be ok."
matt - looking at me with shock and disbelief and a crazy grin on his face - "really??!"
me - laughing - "geesh i didn't know you wanted a snake too! and yes, i mean it. really. HOWEVER, if this snake ever escapes, i will say no words, i will just pack a bag and head to a hotel and you can call me after you have caught him and returned him to his tank. got it?"
matt - laughing - "sure lydia."
so that's all it took and matt started calling around to see where we could find a corn snake. 
a teacher friend at matt's school found out we were getting micah a pet snake and it turned out that she had a 20 gallon tank in her garage and she told us we could have it. she wanted no money, just a homemade pizza as payment. the day before micah's birthday we gathered the "supplies" and matt went to purchase the snake. we hid everything in the garage. the next 24 hours were filled with comments from micah such as, "i'm not getting a snake am i? why can't i have a pet snake? are you sure i can't get a snake? you guys aren't getting me anything are you? i haven't seen you go anywhere for presents.  i'm turning 7 tomorrow, can't we talk about the snake now?" 
it was a long day. 
matt and i planned how we were going to give it to him the next day at his party and 
it. worked. out. perfectly! watch the video here
 so this is jeff. 
jeff the corn snake.
named after the beloved jeff corwin, explorer and animal lover extraordinaire. 
jeff, the snake is still just a baby. he is very easy to handle and is pretty lazy and unassuming. 
until feeding day comes. which is thursday. he eats pinkies. yes, they are frozen baby mice. 
and yes, it is gross,
but strangely fascinating to watch too.
  for those wondering how big jeff will get, the pet store tells us 3 - 4 feet and he will stay relatively skinny. 

welcome to our home jeff. 
you have made a certain 7 year old beyond happy. 
however, i see you weaseled your way from the garage into the house already
...that didn't take long at all. 

back again, and ready

 beatrix's first day of pre-school this year was last wednesday. she is back at the same school and she has the same teacher which equals a very, very happy little girl! the difference in taking her this year is how excited she is to be there. it makes taking her so much easier and enjoyable. 
her speech has improved by leaps and bounds this summer. we were supposed to do summer school, but after taking her the first day and seeing that pretty much anyone under 18 in the neighborhood could come into the school for breakfast and lunch we decided to keep her home for the summer. honestly, i think the break did her good. she is saying all kinds of words and sounds now. she needs to really work on her annunciation, but the determination is there and the desire to talk which is huge! we are beyond thankful and know that it is largely due to people who have been praying for her daily.  
 i was holding penelope in the above pictures and she was being so squirmy that i spontaneously handed her to micah to hold in a picture. 
she flashed the biggest grin, as if to say thanks for including me in the picture too mama!

we only have one vehicle right now so we all take matt in at 6:00 and then we come back home and i get the kids ready. we leave at 7:30 and drop micah off and then penelope and i take beatrix. 
i have to walk her into the school, which is fine...but it does require that i get dressed. ha!
she showed a little cautious hesitation before entering the room. 
but her teacher was spotted, a huge grin broke out on her face and then she ran right into her room.
pips and i gave bea hugs and kisses and told her we would see her at 10:30.
i'm so thankful she loves her school so much!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

getting jeff

{seven} for real

what does the baby do while mommy is getting ready for a party? why eat paper of course! i was on the ball with this party though and it felt nice to get to be a part of micah's special day. i started preperations for the party on thursday. i premade all of the pretzel dogs, i made the cake and the cupcakes and froze them. it was nice to not save it all for the end. micah requested a shark cake for his birthday party that we had on saturday. i was thankful that he was cool with a low key swim party again this year. birthday parties here can get a little over the top so i was really happy that he was ok with utilizing our free entertainment. because of that i was more than willing to try to make him a specialty cake. i decided to try my hand at fondant, due again to our watching of cake boss. ha! 
i found a picture on-line and just tried to tell myself, "micah will think this is cool no matter what, relax!" 
the shark turned out pretty funny to me, but micah was ecstatic! 
the morning of his birthday he came in early and whispered, "is my cake finished?" to which i relied, "yes, it's in the fridge." he ran out of the room and returned very quickly. he jumped into bed beside me and whispered with an enormous grin on his face, "mommy, it's awesome! and last night i had a dream that you put the candle on the dorsal fin and you did! YOU DID put the candle on the dorsal fin!" 
i laughed and hugged him tight and whispered happy birthday love! we laid in bed for awhile and looked at his baby book. i told him the story of his birth and how happy we were when he was born. i showed him our  bracelets that we all had wore in the hospital, and we looked at pictures from the first year of his life. 
it was a wonderful way to spend the first few moments of his birthday. 
i got up and began getting ready for the party. 
our dear friends, got micah this amazing book that shows you a different part of the anatomy of a shark. 
each page highlights a different system, skeletal, digestive, nervous system, ect. 
he LOVED it!

when it was time for cake and blowing out the candles, matt and a friend carried in our present to micah. 
his new pet snake. 
you can see them in the far right corner. 
he had no. idea. 

after he blew out the candles, i asked him "buddy what did you wish for?" he just covered his mouth and shook his head. he didn't want to tell me. the day before, when he had answered that same question from someone at school, one of his classmates told him that his wish wouldn't come true if you said it out loud. 
i said, "well is that it, behind you?"
he turned around and he couldn't believe it!
is this an excited face or what?
he enjoyed looking at the snake and he and matt named him Jeff, after jeff corwin.
then we cut the cake.
micah wanted the teeth. 
i made the cake red velvet so that it would look like guts when you cut into it. 

micah kept going out to the garage to stare at jeff.
opening presents finally lured him back inside. 

it was a cake massacre. 

he had an amazing day!


 the saturday after micah's first day of school was his birthday, so he asked me to bring cupcakes in to his class on friday. we have been watching cake boss on netflix alot lately and so micah had very specific ideas on what kind of cake he wanted. this boy is detailed orientated! he wanted half coconut cupcakes and half vanilla cupcakes. i used this recipe here. and it really was the best cake i have ever made. i followed the directions to the T, well, except to the teaspoon of vanilla i added not even a 1/4 teaspoon of almond extract. it tasted like wedding cake, really really good wedding cake. 
but i digress...
 penelope, beatrix and i waited for micah and his class to come back from PE. 
when he did return he was a sweaty, red faced mess. but a HAPPY sweaty, red faced mess! 
i bought shark bites gummy fruit snacks and put one on top of each cupcake. 
he thought that was pretty fantastic.
 the class sang happy birthday complete with "cha cha cha"
 after micah blew out the candles someone yelled, "micah! what did you wish for?" 
and without any hesitation micah yelled out with a grin, "a SNAKE!!!"

first day of second grade

micah's first day of second grade was August 15th, a wednesday. he woke up early. 
really early. 
nervous. excited. ready. 
at least he told me he was ready, but his body language said otherwise. 
it was telling me he wasn't so ready. maybe he was a little more than a little-bit-nervous. 
he was very proud of his back pack. 
i also ordered matching detroit tiger's lunch boxes for micah and matt. 

it was tricky getting micah to take "first day of school pictures" this year. 
but i did the old, "don't smile. pleeeease, dooooon't smile."
it worked.
and then he went back to his sour pants face again.

hugs from daddy before heading to his classroom.
 and a hug for bea as well. 

 micah's teacher this year is excited about science.
all summer micah worked on experiments and research to talk to her about when school started.
i have a feeling that second grade is going to be a great year!