Wednesday, September 2, 2009

MOVING DAY!!!!!!!!

Well, I felt it was time for the ole Ickert Crew to get a face lift. So I am happy and excited to let you all know that our family has a new blog site called "Momsie"
Please check out all our crazy and fun moments at

Don't forget to update us on your blog list and feel free to join as a follower as well. I love followers. :-)

Take care,

Friday, August 21, 2009

Boys of Summer

I blinked and summer was over...

The lack of postings on this blog probably has already indicted to some of you on how busy the summer has been... However pure laziness and a way too slow computer sometimes also contributed.. Yet here it is a week away from school starting and I didn't want summer to slip away too fast without posting updates and photos of just how wonderful it has been.

So here goes... This summer had been a pivotal one for me. Mainly due to the boys to the unthinkable....GROWING UP!! They are older and more independent now. Instead of having to break up fights I got to listen to them play togeteher..nicely...most of the time. I listened as they became "batman" or "superman" as they looked for "Bolt" the dog form the movie with the same name. They played pirates and did the "Arrgguuhhh" from Peter Pan and talked about going to Neverland. They discovered legos were no longer fun things to throw around but were actually little puzzles that can make cars, little cities even robots.

They lost interest in their sand and water table and became more interested in riding their bikes, big wheels or scooters. Sports have peeked their interest more as well. They got a new basketball hoop and have officially been signed up for soccer (which of course officially makes me a "Soccer Mom, oh the horror...I mean joy...)

Diapers became obsolete in our house and thus began "pee pee" competitions, "pee pee" songs and pee pee behind the bush out in the front yard for all the world to see (once again to my horror...I mean my joy because come on, that is kind of funny).

Later nights...later schedules, no more naps, no more sippy cups and Diego shaped silverware. No more "Mommy I need I need" but more of "Mommy let me show you... Mommy come see what I made..." (sometimes this was pleasant other times not so much).

More learning more questions more discovering. Night lights are still a necessity so are "time outs" and the occasional spanking.

Ryan's 3 year old babble turned into talking more and more and he is actually making sense. Evan is still talking always talking...never stops talking even talks about talking too much and talks to other people, things and objects. It's quite entertaining..most of the time.

We were able to go to the beach twice this year. Once kid free (thanks Lori and Dave) and once to Hilton Head as a family (thanks Mom and Dad). Both trips were fantastic. I even got to escape to the beach for a Mommy free weekend. Need to do that at least twice a year, maybe three times....

And the swimming...Oh the swimming this year has been my favorite. What was once a chore, a constant panic attack for me never wanting to let them out of my sight or firm grip. A page was turned and they both took to the water this year like fishes. I gave them my own swimming lessons and bonded with them more than I ever thought possible. I learned that even though they are older and keep growing, Mommy is the one they trust the most. Mommy is the one the depend on and still need. Selfishly I don't ever want that to end but know one day it will.

But the summer of 2009 has been glorious... A truly glorious time as I watch them grow and become more and more "Evan" and "Ryan" So different so incredible and so blissfully mine.

I think that covers just about everything but just incase here is a slide show of much of my favorite moments of the summer. Hope everyone had the same and enjoyable time with their family as I did mine.
Now let fall begin.

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Thursday, July 9, 2009

A New System - Becuase if they don't listen I might go insane!

So we are trying something new. The set up is nothing fancy but it goes something like this:
Evan and Ryan - if you are good, you are in the green!! If you are bad you are in the red!! If you are in between you are in the yellow and that is considered your warning.

Results as of 4:00 this afternoon: Evan -Yellow!! Ryan - Negative Pink (a.k.a so far off the chart I am not even sure where he is).

This idea came compliments of my husband. Ever the "think outside of the box" kind of Dad he came up with this system after having to console me the other night after a day full of the boys just absolutely refusing to listen to me. Poor guy, I am grateful that he held me and let me babble incoherently for about 10 minutes on how I tried every trick, every discipline manner I have learned over the years only to be met with complete and utter disobedience. Maybe it's the summer boredom setting in. Maybe I was just having an off day... Or maybe while the boys were asleep aliens took over each child and converted them to little horror shows yet all the while still looking completely the same... Maybe it's just life! Either way, a day of yelling exhausted me and moved me to tears beyond my control. This is nothing too terribly new but with school still a long way aways something needs to give. I think Chris does a better job at coming up with these things than I do. mainly because he isn't around them as much as I am and still has most brain cells intact, but also because he is just much better at problem solving.
Mommy in a puddle of hysterics on the floor when he comes home.
Solution: Stop light Chart, and firm description to the boys that if they are in the red when he gets' home they get a pants down spaking from daddy and his paddle of choice.

So it's been in effect for two days and damn it all if it isn't working. While just a few minutes ago while Evan attempted to go air born pretending to be superman, I yelled at him to not only get down but that if he didn't listen he was going to go into the "Red" and would have to deal with Daddy when he got home. Quickly his expression changed and he got down. I feel a new power come over me. Maybe just maybe I am taking control back... And I can't take any credit for this simple yet brilliant idea. Dang...But oh how I love the feeling. Stay tuned...

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

My Best Friend's Baby

Many of you know that one of my closest Friends from college is a...(gasp) guy. I got to know Steve my freshman year when he was my RA. I knew there was something special about him the night he came and picked me up from a frat party I had no business being at and didn't seem to flinch when I threw up all over his shoes. Yup, I knew this guy was going to be a keeper. And he is. Steve and I had a very special friendship not only in college but probably more so after college. He moved out west but we stayed in touch over the years. he moved back east and he helped me get my act together throughout my 20's with late night phone calls and occasional visits back to our old stomping grounds in Virginia Beach. I can honestly say I have laughed more with Steve than anyone else in my life. He is a rare find, and one I am so glad I did all those years ago. We each took part in each other's weddings, him making the long trip down to Mexico to see Chris and I get married on the beach, and me, the one and only female groomsmen standing beside him as I watched him marry Leah, the love of his life.
It is with Leah that he is now a first time father. He is journaling his experience on his blog and I really want to share it with as many people as I can. You see, Steve is a born writer. He is tremendous at it and since we all read blogs about our lives as Mommies, I thought it would be refreshing to read one about a daddy. A very funny and sincere Daddy who is right in the throws of first time fatherhood. It's refreshing to see that men and not just women go through the emotional roller coaster of parenthood. Now, I have to warn you, Steve says it like it is. His sense of humor can be a times "dark" but in a weird way it's why I love him. Why be boring right? Just be. Here is his link and I will also have it posted on my blog roll.

Steve and his bride Leah on their wedding day:

Steve with me on my wedding day.

Steve and Leah with the boys last year.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

A letter to the Manufactor

Dear "you people" who design packaging of children's toys:

This is the first time I have ever written a letter like this. I will do my best to get straight to the point so here goes.

I am writing to you today after my latest incident of attempting to take a toy out of it's box, plastic wrapping and/or bullet proof plastic containers.
First off, you may not realize this so let me do a little of explaining. Small children have zero patience!! Let me type that word again
I would assume you people would take this into consideration when designing these boxes and wrapping for kids toys. Now, let me back up and say this. I do understand that all packing needs to be designed securely to prevent sticky fingers and shopping lifting. Especially with kids toys. I am still reeling from the $100 silver salt and pepper shakers that Evan swiped off a display table in Macy's one day only for me to realize it half way down the parking lot...
SIDE TRACKED - sorry back to the point of my letter.
Let me start with the basic concept of packaging. Is it all that necessary to use bright colors, vivid pictures and basically anything and everything that a 3 year old can pick out from 200 feet away? Are you aware of the fact that children, especially pre-schoolers thinks everything belongs to them and have ZERO (there is that word again Z.E.R.O) fear of showing their ass in public, especially in large retail super center stores where most likely friends family even worship Pastors are almost always lurking and waiting for my reaction to said ass showing.
But let me get to the real meat and potatoes of my letter... what on earth is up with the plastic ties that bind all toys to their packaging. I mean, is it necessary to use 127 of them, the toy is 3 inches long?? And is is some kind of cruel joke to actually screw in a toy to it's packaging? Do you think it's funny that when Mommy pleads and begs with her child that he can open it when we get home, only to realize that it will take the entire crew of Home Depot to help me get the stupid toy out of the box and we Mommies (or at least myself anyways) have no idea where screw drivers are kept in the house?? I mean seriously WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE???
But before I get too carried away let me digress a tad (I AM PERFECTLY CALM!!).
Surely systems are in place for a reason and I will try and understand your reason and logic behind security proofing a toy to it's box that you need the jaws of life to undo. But please hear me as I think I speak for most Mothers everywhere. Knock this crap off. Or if anything please oh please do away with the hideous plastic ties. They just plain suck and serve ZERO purpose on this earth (Websters definition of Zero - having no magnitude or quantity : not any c (1): having no phonetic manifestation) Just in case you all needed help with that word.
Thank you in advance for taking time to read my letter. I am sure most of you are relatively nice and decent people. I am just convinced not a single one of you owns a child under the age of 5.

Here are some photos of why this letter has wound up in your hands today:

Before (the storm)

Ryan showing his ass while Mommy fights with getting toy out (isn't he cute?)

It didn't have to be this way:

The most eveil things on earth next to double fudge brownies:

Finally, they are happy:

Monday, May 25, 2009

Preschool over , let the Crazy begin.

Evan and Ryan on their first day of school.

Well another year (okay 9 months) has come and gone and summer has officially begun. I recognize my current state of neurosis from last year when Evan preschool ended and I was stuck with the reality of having both boys to entertain every day for 12 hours (at least) with a minimum effect on the wallet and my sanity. But as we mother's always do we put on our game faces and dive into the summer with fierce determination that this yes THIS will be the summer of simple laid back proportion's. That is my hope anyways for this year. Currently I have the boys signed up for only one camp and that is it. I am sure as we get settled deeper into the summer weeks swim lessons will follow as well as more playgroups, pool dates with Mommy friends who belong to pools (love them) and lot's and lot's of backyard entertainment. I just hope they don't grow bored with the plastic pool I purchased for them last week. IF anything it looks lovely currently leaned up against the side of our house. Will it ever stop raining???
But, not to get side tracked... I did want to dedicate this post to looking back on preschool. For Evan this was year number 2. Like last year, he settled right in and seemed ready for the start of the year. He had new teachers this year, Ms. Trisha and Ms. Karen who were truly wonderful. This year in school he became more independent more willing to try new things (yes even vegetables) and can now write his name (sort of) It was a year for his first "report card" and my first parent teacher conference. I was told by his teachers that Evan is a very proud little boy and likes to do things his own way. This stubborn streak he clearly get's from his father (although I am sure he would argue with me on this). Evan took his little jobs in school very seriously and would get his feelings hurt pretty quick if something bad would happen. Over the whole year he only had a few bumps with having to sit in the "thinking chair" mainly for not sharing. If I sound like I am bragging I am (he is my child and it's my duty). As for me I watched Evan grow from a shy tender spirited little boy to a humble and of so smart and curious 4 year old. I think he enjoyed science the best and still sings the "Sticky sticky bubble gum" song every day. I know school has been so good for him as he is a true problem solver and likes and maybe even needs to be challenged mentally. I can already catch glimpses of him doing his homework probably not needing much help from me (if he does he is in trouble since I can barely add 2+2). I am so proud of him. My baby. All grown up. Sort of he is just 4 but still. You all know what I mean.
And then there was Ryan. I type this with a smile on my face because it pretty much sums up his year as well. He was so excited and anxious to go to school with Evan this year. He only cried a few times when it was time to leave him with his teachers, Ms. Ann and Ms. LaDonna who were also just as wonderful. The first few weeks the only tricky part was he refused and I mean REFUSED to have his diaper changed. It was a puzzle to us all since he never gave me any trouble at home nor had I seen him refuse having his diaper changed. It was a mystery for about two weeks and I had visions of having to go into school every time Ryan needed his diaper changed, when the mystery resolved itself. Turns out the teachers would put on latex gloves when changing diapers that Ryan immediately associated latex gloves with being at the doctors office and getting a shot (He had a round of ear infections last summer and shots were probably still fresh in his mind). When he finally said or rather sobbed to his teachers and the words "no globes" tumbled out did she realize the issue. So, for Ryan's tushy no gloves. Problem solved. Thank goodness for understanding preschool teachers...
Ryan who has always been in his own silly little world seemed to also benefit this year, especially being around other kids his own age and not in the shadow of his brother. I would watch him sometimes after dropping him off and he would always go right to the circles of friends sit down and just join in. I see a born leader in Ryan (once again exercising my bragging rights). He marches to his own tune but is sweet and so freaking adorable that kids seemed drawn to him. This of course not always the case as Ryan too has his issues of not wanting to share, a couple pushing issues and my personal favorite Spitting. I had to work with him a few times on listening to his teachers and using "kind and gentle" hands. When I dropped him off in September he was still in diapers still had baby chunk and still napped every day. Now he is fully potty trained, has lost most if not all of his baby fat (waaaahhhhhhh....) and doesn't nap every day like he used to. He is a boy now, a growing boy and I am so proud of him.
As for me here is what I will miss and of course not miss:
I won't miss the craziness of trying to get out of the house on time despite my best efforts to have everything packed the night before.
I won't miss scouring the house for their shoes as I can never ever find them on those oh so famous late days.
I won't miss making and packing lunches as it gets hard to get creative with variety for two little boys who only want to eat chocolate pudding.
I won't miss always over looking the notices sent home in their folders as to what's happening this week. Many oh times I had to scramble to come up with show and tells, projects and operation shoe box so my child won't be left out and therefore permanently scared for life. Next year I will have to do better at actually reading what gets sent home and not just stacking on my calendar.
What I will miss...
Seeing the other Mom's in carpool line and making new friends.
The happy smiling faces of the boys when they see I have come to pick them up.
Getting good reports on either child and beaming with pride as I take them home convinced I am the best Mom in the world (this fake feeling of perfection only lasts about 3 minutes but I enjoy all the same).
And probably what I will miss most of all is that fro 3 days a week I had 4 hours all to myself. I wish I had some fantastic end of year accomplishment that I could show off proving I was indeed productive in my free time. The book that I starting writing years ago that I was convinced I would finish still lies unfinished and barely tweaked. The house isn't much cleaner (although I did create a "craft" cabinet one day and now all crayons, markers, coloring books and paint utensil have the same address). Yeah me!!
Nope, when all is said and done I think I spent the first half of the year with my free time wandering around Target. And the second half of the year wandering around the other side of Target. And now summer is here and my free time is gone. As I finish this post (finally I know) I realize that everything is going to be okay. That for the last 4 and 1/2 years I have had the complete honor and joy of being Ryan and Evan's Mommy. As they grow up and school hours turn into 6 hours a day 5 days a week I will savor this age, savor that I still get to be with them. Crazy as they make me sometimes....and I mean CRAZY crazy...when all is said and done I am alright with that!

Evan and Ryan on the last day of school.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Yes, they DO get a long.

When no one is looking, and the stars line up... Evan and Ryan really do seems to love each other as brothers. As a mother this warms my heart more than they will ever know. I had to post some pictures (most of them from after the played in their new pool and were wrapped up in towels) it's moments like this I am so grateful they have each other.