Keeping you posted on our big adventure into parenthood

Good. Great. Grand.

If you live long enough eventually someone will break your heart. This may sound negative; hell, it may even be negative, but it’s true. Lately we’ve experienced a little heartache with the boys. Mason hit the 18-month mark a while back and he’s realized that mom and dad are the people who he feels most comfortable with. This is great, and Kelly and I hope that feeling always persists. The negative of it is that we’re also the enemy in many circumstances, and since he feels comfortable displaying his full spectrum of emotions with us, sometimes the results are less than enviable. Recently the tantrums have increased and with that comes more kicking, hitting and a gross misuse of the word “no”. The positive side of this is that he only seems to do it with us, so he’s very well behaved with other people. I guess this goes with being a good parent and sticking by the rules you’ve established, but I can certainly understand how/why kids quickly begin to rule some households. It’s hard to be the enemy all the time. It’s hard to get hit and kicked from the one person you just want to run to you and give you a hug. I think it’s been tougher for Kelly, since Mason seems to be harder on her with the hitting, but this is all normal according to the experts. What’s that old saying- no one ever said parenting was easy? True.

I remember with Mason that there was a time when he just wanted mommy. Ben seems to have approached that stage already and it’s tough, as a dad, not to be able to console your child, especially when he’s incapable of communicating verbally. Not to mention Kelly is already exhausted from a lack of sleep and needs a break from mommy-duty sometimes. Well, Mr. Ben, I have news for you. Me and you are going to spending some more quality time together and soon you’ll realize that I’m one of the good guys. *Update to this* I can’t wrestle Ben out of the grandparent’s arms so my dedicated daddy time will have to wait till after this week.

Alright- enough with all that negativity. It’s not all Debbie Downer in the Wright household. In fact, we’ve had some great times in the last couple of weeks. Grandpa and Grandma Wright came down for their quarterly trip about two weeks ago and have been spending lots of time in with their grandbabies. There are many positives about visiting grandparents. Mason gets lots of extra attention, we usually come home to a home-cooked meal, and if Ben doesn’t wake up early we get to sleep in on the weekends. Oh yeah, and they are awesome to have around. It’s always refreshing to get some confirmation that your parenting is solid and we’ve needed more of that than ever recently. Although, my mom did tell Mason that he was “on his way to getting a spanking” the other day. I quickly reassured him that he is not, and then we took a timeout. My parents abandoned spanking when I was really young, so it’s funny to hear the threat now, knowing they would never actually do it.

We also got a surprise visit from Grandma and Grandpa Mac for a few days as they drove back from their yearly winter vacation in Florida. Kelly texted me at work to tell me “there is a surprise waiting for you at home”. Knowing that she is a dog lover, I immediately panicked at the thought of another dog in the house. I calmed myself down, realizing that no woman who has an 18 month old, an 8 week old, and two dogs already, would take in another pooch. I racked my brain for a bit on the possibilities… a new gift for Mason or Ben? A hilarious video of Mason dancing? A pile of brownies with no nuts and Breyers vanilla ice cream? I gave up. When I walked in and saw my in-laws I was honestly shocked. I almost never get surprised, so this was a treat and the boys got to spend time with all of their grandparents simultaneously.

The boys have been spoiled here lately. Mason wakes up each morning with Pappy and Grandma and usually hangs out in bed with them for a while. The elders (that’s what I’m calling the 4 grandparents from now on) decided to pitch in and split the cost of a brand new king size bed. I guess they were tired of sleeping on a queen and kicking each other. If you’ve never owned a king size mattress you’re probably better off. Every time we have to sleep in a queen I wonder how we did it for so long. I feel so cramped. I guess if you’re a snuggler then it’s all good, but we like our space when we sleep. It’s too hot in Texas to be all on top of each other. Anyway, Mason loves the new bed because he gets to run and roll around with extra space in the mornings. Meanwhile, Ben has been spending most of his nights in bed with us so far. Crib training is coming soon, but for now Kelly has been on permanent human pillow duty.

So, that’s it for now. We’ll have more news after this week since Ben returns to the doctor for his normal checkup, and we’ll certainly have some updated pictures of the Texas Snowpacalypse 2011 that is currently upon us. Until then…

I can’t remember who gave Ben this pacifier as a gift but Mason found it and decided it was his. Fortunately this did not give him doggy breath.

The happy Bears fans had a photo opp before the divisional playoff game vs. the Seahawks. It was a good season for the Bears and one that far exceeded my modest expectations. The end was disappointing but they’ll be back. There’s always next year right? Well… I guess they could have a lock out if they can’t agree on a CBA. Then what will I do?

Mom and the her cubbies weren’t going to be left out. I don’t know what this face is that Ben is making but it’s both hilarious and creepy.

Kelly was in the shower one morning when she heard Ben start crying. Then he suddenly stopped. When she came out of the shower she realized why. Bella had come to his aid and Ben was as calm as can be. This is pretty remarkable because Bella never goes into our bedroom. Ever. We’ve actually called her in there several times and she won’t go. I guess when her Ben is in need she will rise to the occasion… and the bed.

Happy toddler!

This might be my new favorite picture of Mason. He had his first bubble bath a couple weeks ago and loved it. The problem now is getting him out of the bath. That and trying to convince him not to eat the bubbles.

He’s about to hit the slide here. I noticed that Mason and I both have a habit of making funny faces when we are working on something or are concentrating really hard. He sticks his tongue out and I bite my lower lip. I wonder what Ben will do?

Kelly and Dad at the park with a bundle of Ben. Dad was catching some of Mason’s action on the Flip cam.

Grandma helped Mason cross the suspension bridge.

Momma on the slide.

Grandma and the boys. Lots of hugs.

To escape being tickled, Mason chewed on a cellphone. That makes sense.

Mason and Grandma have this exact same picture. I think she may have even been wearing the same shirt 😉

Grandpa and Grandma Wright got Mason a recliner and he loves it. He tested it out by having dinner in it the first night. Explain this one to me- my 18 month old son gets his own “daddy chair” and gets my wife to feed him dinner. I have no chair and no hand-fed meals. What a crock!

Brothers! This picture just makes me think of all the awesome brotherly moments they’ll share in the future. We can only hope they grow closer as the years go by. I don’t think Kelly and I will be able to handle two boys who fight all the time.

So sweet

Grandpa Mac arrived with a fresh new haircut and plenty of hugs for the boys.

I don’t know what was so funny. Did Ben fart?

Mason loved going for a ride on Grandpa’s walker.

And hanging from the monkey bars at the park..

And riding on the swing with mom.

Grands and Grands

One last picture before they hit the road. Fortunately for the McBreen clan they arrived prior to the blizzard that crushed the Midwest. Kathy posted pictures of their return and I can honestly say I’ve never been happier to live in Texas. I love the snow as long as I’ve got skis strapped to my feet and cold beer waiting for me at the bottom of the mountain. As for shoveling it, well that just sucks.

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