Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Alyce Learns to Ride a Bike

In the past few days Alyce went from riding with training wheels to being a full fledged bike rider!  I can't believe how quickly she learned!

I did a little bit of looking online and the consensus I found was that at first you should take the pedals off the bike and allow them to learn balance before they have to worry about pedaling.  Also with no pedals on the bike they can put their feet down without any obstruction.  Alyce was in this mode for two different sessions.  The first time was with me and she was a little shaky.  Alyce's longest run without putting her feet down was 15' or so.  On Monday Mom took Alyce out for another session and she made it down the street unassisted!

Tonight we were all out together and after seeing Alyce go down the street a few times I told her she was ready for pedals.  I put them on right then and there.  We went down to the end of street and with a gentle push she was off!

After a few short rides she was off doing circles through the cul de sac.  We practiced stopping without crashing and starting.  The only difficulty she has is getting started.  If she is on a hill she is ok but if on level ground has a bit of trouble.  I figure she'll have that figured out the next time she's out on the bike.

Mom and I were both very proud parents!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Parents Observation

Tonight is parents observation night. Alyce is in the middle of her third year of dance. It's pretty unbelievable.

Alyce is such a well behaved little girl. She pays attention for most of the class. She's getting more flexible too. She can now touch the floor without bending her knees.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Girl Scout Cookies

So my little Daisy (young Girl Scout) is doing her annual duty to the troop by selling Girl Scout Cookies. As far as a product goes the Girl Scouts have a lock. Just post something on Facebook that you are selling and the orders come piling in.

I remember as a kid going door to door shilling the fund raising wares of my school. My mom making me practice my spiel before sending me out the neighbors. Walking up the driveway to every house on the block hoping that no one would be home. I don't plan on Alyce having to run through the whole block but perhaps a knock on a few doors.  You know, for character building.

But after calling the grandparents and dropping off the form at work I'm sure she'll have enough boxes sold to qualify for a badge or a pencil or something.

I'd really like to skip the whole fundraising thing altogether.  I see the need to raise funds but factor in the time for selling, accounting, and delivery and there's so much work for very little profit.  If you need cash give us the option of just writing a check for the average profit you'd like to make per kid. This argument is moot with Girl Scout Cookies because everyone likes those things.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Girl Scouts

Tonight I'm out to dinner with Luke because Alyce is with Mom at Girl Scouts! Yes that's right my little girl is a Girl Scout well just a Daisy.

Tonight's meeting is being held at our house thus the need for Luke and I to vacate to McDonald's. Alyce was so excited she was bouncing off of the walls. I think most importantly she wanted to show off her room to her friends.

The troop seems well run and every mother has a small sliver of responsibility from hosting to presenting.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Soccer Practice

Alyce enjoying a snack with her team after soccer practice.

I wouldn't say her team is good. But they are having fun.


Last week we took the kids to Ringling Bros. Barnum Bailey Circus. Our friends Josh and Tammy invited us to go with their kids Gideon and Sylvie.

At first I wasn't too excited to go. But with tickets at $12 a seat I relented. The seats were pretty good and the circus was entertaining. Luke spent most of the time in my lap with his hands over his ears. It was kind of loud and he's sensitive. Luckily he didn't freak out and burst into tears like he had done earlier this year at a baseball game.

Fall Festival

Yesterday was the fall festival at Alyce's school. It was a fund raising event and by the looks of it pretty successful. It was also the first time the kids got to wear their Halloween costumes.

This year Luke is Captain America and Alyce is a purple mermaid.

At the event there was a Trunk or Treat. People decorated their vans and the kids hit everyone for candy like they were houses. It was neat and fast.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

First Day of Kindergarten

Today was Alyce's first day of kindergarten! And it couldn't have come soon enough! Mom and I weren't in a big hurry to see her out of the house. But both she and her brother have been bouncing off the walls for the last few days in anticipation of the big day. Now that the day has come and gone we hope that life can return to normal.

Alyce is in afternoon kindergarten along with every other child in the neighborhood. A few events last week we met some of Alyce's classmates and their parents. I think about a third of the families in attendance live in our neighborhood. One girl, Ellie, lives three houses away. We've met her and her parents before but haven't had much reason to carry on a conversation let alone become friends. We are hoping now that the kids ride the bus together and get off at the same spot we will become closer.

I stayed home from work today. I couldn't miss such a big event in my children's lives especially since I have a dearth of vacation days saved up. The morning was pretty much like any other. Mom got the kids up and fed and then fed again earlier than normal because they'll be in class during their normal lunch time. Once dressed up in their 1st day of school finest we brought them outside for the required 1st day photos. Timings being what they are Alyce can't ride the bus to school except for Fridays when Luke doesn't have preschool. We have to drop Luke off first and then hightail it over to Alyce's school to get her in on time.

We didn't get to walk Alyce to her room. We just brought her outside and waited for the buses to show up with her classmates. Many parents put their kids on the bus and then drove to school to record the experience and to make sure they got there ok. If we didn't have to drop Luke off I think we would have done the same thing. Once everyone was accounted for it was time to say goodbye. Except things happened so quickly we didn't get the heartfelt goodbye we hoped for. We had given her about a million hugs before then so she didn't seem to notice not getting one more. And then they marched in. Mom and I turned and walked to the car holding back a few tears. I was sad to see her go but happy that she was taking such a big step.

Later that afternoon when she got off the bus she was as happy as can be. She and Luke even played with Ellie and her sister while we and Ellie's mom chatted for a while. Mission accomplished. We asked Alyce how her first day of school was and she said some pretty generic stuff like she had fun, she liked her teacher, and enjoyed the bus ride. The big item of note was that they search for some buried treasure of tootsie rolls.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Eye Muscle Surgery

There is some news out of left field; Alyce is having another eye muscle surgery for her Strabismus. Last week Mom took Alyce to the eye doc for her annual checkup. During the visit the doc stated Alyce's eyes needed another adjustment. We noticed her eyes drifting a bit before the visit so we weren't too surprised by the statement.
The schedule was booked so tight that Alyce would have to wait until mid September for her procedure. In order to get it done before school started we elected to be put on the Cancel List. The Cancel List is a waiting list for those who will step in when the the scheduled procedure cannot be done due to complications, fever, or some other factor.

We figured we'd get in roughly August when the list had exhausted itself. Well the list must have been really short because we got the call yesterday and Alyce is in surgery today!

Mom spent yesterday getting Alyce ready. Watching videos about the outpatient experience provided by Children's Hospital. I spent an hour talking to her at bed time allaying her fears. Throw in some dinner, ice cream at Culvers, a new set of Legos, and Alyce seemed ready to go.

This morning she was in great spirits. Playing video games on the computer and with Legos. Even at the hospital she seemed unimpressed with the events that were transpiring. I think she was more interested in watching Blue's Clues than going into surgery.

Alyce is out of surgery, recovery, and was just wheeled back into her room. Talking to the surgeon all went well. They only needed to operate on the inner muscle of her left eye. Worse than the surgery Alyce can't go swimming for the next week unless she wears goggles. I'm thinking we will just keep her out of the water altogether.

Once she's woken up completely and manages to drink something and keep it down we can head home. Now that Alyce has made her way through she said to us "this is not fun".

The white thing over her eyes is just a wet washcloth and not bandages. Other than the pool Alyce can go right back to her normal routine. We're not too sure about day care tomorrow.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Six Flags

What spring and summer would be complete without season passes to Six Flags? One of the nicest perks we have living where we do is making quick trips to Six Flags. 5 minutes down the road and you are parking your car. A few minutes after that you are in the park.

We ride the same rides every time we go. The kids don't mind. I think they prefer the routine. One bonus on going late in the evening is that all the other children have gone home. Leaving our kids with the run of the place. So much that the Bugs Bunny Airplane ride didn't have anyone in line providing Alyce and Luke the opportunity to fly their own planes.  Upon taking off Alyce went straight up to the top. Luke well it took him most of the right to figure out that he had to pull back hard on the stick to go up. He managed to get off "the ground" but never got all the way up.  No worries though he enjoyed himself.

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