Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Lights

Greetings friends and family,

Easton's insatiable appetite for playing with cars, planes, and trains reveals itself daily when he asks, "will you play with me, Daddy?"  Even when I play for several hours during a day he still asks for more.  I'm not complaining. I'm bragging. :)  There will be a day when I'm not the coolest, smartest guy he knows and he'll want to do other things besides play with me.  That is why I cherish these times more every day.  He has a huge  storage bin full of cars, planes, and trains.  I know whenever I want to get his attention and have some fun all I need to do is pull the bin off the shelf and dump it out on his floor.

I received a gift card for Starbucks a few weeks ago.  I don't drink coffee much, but Starbucks makes a great eggnog slurpee (frappuccino).  Easton and Layla are also recipients of the gift because I took them out for a little Daddy time and gave them a vanilla steamer each.  Tam gave me the idea because I don't like to give them much sugar or chocolate with caffeine especially late in the evening.

Sharing is a good idea in theory, but in practice giving them separate drinks avoids much confrontation. lessons i learned the hard way...

After vanilla steamers we walked across the parking lot as the drizzle and sprinkles came down.  The mist is Arizona's version of raining.  The twins were off the hook screaming, "it's raining!  my nose is wet!" as they held their arms out and looked up at the clouds like the cover of Shawshank Redemption.

Once inside they head straight for the fish where they fight the urge to poke every glass aquarium.  Then they realized a whole wall of kitties were waiting to be teased.  We spent several minutes describing every cat including the color of their spots and how they were playing.

No, we're not getting a cat.  Daddy is still allergic to them and my nose quivers just looking at the picture.  No, we're not getting a dog.  We are still cleaning up "accidents" from Easton and Layla.  We don't need another unstable bladder until Uno and Dos get their act cleaned up...  figuratively speaking.

Our new neighborhood is outstanding.  We've talked to more neighbors in the past three weeks than we did the entire 10 years in our previous neighborhood.  There are several kids close to Easton and Layla's age, which is an extra exciting bonus of living here.  We rode our bikes to the park down the street.  I say we because I'm not comfortable yet sending them there alone.  Maybe in a couple of years?

We have yet to get any instruments for the twins because I can't seem to find good advice on what should be their first introduction to music. In the mean time we improvise.  The three of us picked up a rock and banged on the playground equipment pipes.  Each one had its own distinct tone and I got a kick out of Easton and Layla's response to observing the uniqueness of the sounds.

This weekend we gave Mommy a break by hanging out at the train park a.k.a. Strawberry Raisin train.  I packed a bag-o-snacks to keep on schedule with meal times.  The twins were given two crackers each just as a mad-scientist experiment.  I wanted to see how they react to the hungry ducks who saw us sit down to eat.  Both of them immediately wanted to give both of their crackers only if I would give them more crackers from the bag.  I told them no more crackers and then watched the experiment play out.  They conversed for a couple of minutes about how they easily would have given their crackers to the ducks if they knew more crackers were available.  After pondering the situation they both walked over and happily gave both of their crackers to the ducks.

That's sacrificial giving.

I mention that short story because adults hit this same situation in life, even unrelated to Christmas, but choose not to give to those in need unless they are giving out of their abundance.  I'm very proud to see the life lessons which are important to me are already being passed on to the twins.

After snack time we ravaged the playground area.  Layla runs and runs and then runs some more.  I spend most of my park time hanging out with Easton and keeping an eye out for where is Layla.

Easton is cautious and calculating, but adventurous none the less.  He chose to do some solo rock climbing because the other boys playing chase and tag were not polite.  I can't blame him.  :)

My Saturday was completely consumed with home improvement jobs and getting the Webb house exterior into the Christmas spirit.  The extra tall ladder came in very handy!  Two of my neighbors switched from old-school ice sickle lights to the new fad of LED.  Both of them gave me their old lights and I proudly accepted their "welcome to the neighborhood" hand-me-downs.  What a blessing!

The huge, full moon shining over the Saguaro cactus is quintessential Christmas in AZ.   Also the fact that I could NOT see my breath and was wearing a T-shirt.  Life is good.  My two week vacation starts in 4 days and i can't wait!

See you soon!

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