I spent a serious amount of time this past week in the boys’ room. I was going through boxes of toys and tossing old stuff, reorganizing what they had and making labels for everything. Standard day in the Forsyth home. As I was doing this, I came across this piece of paper jammed in a drawer on their desk. Noah wrote it. It says (in case you can’t read it):

3 things I think are osum (awesome): Play gumpootr (computer), ches (chess) with dad, Famle (family) and I, play with Mathyoo (Matthew Rocco Clark, his cousin) enewer (anywhere).

I love my little Noah. He is so awesome.

I don’t think I ever wrote this down, but it needs to be documented, so here we go … Christina picked up all the boys from school one day about a month ago and they were all excited and talking about the drug-free day at school. All the boys were talking about the stuff their teachers were teaching them about being and staying drug free. Christina asked Liam how his day was and he piped up and said, “I heard that drugs were free and I’m gonna get some”. :)

And I haven’t told a good Daniel story lately, but the other morning I was getting ready with Daniel in the bathroom and I asked how he slept, and he responded, “I slept okay, but I kept dreaming about trying to go to sleep”. Unbelievable. Daniel dreams of sleeping.

Thanksgiving was a blast, I will have to post pictures and tell all about my turkey making experience.


“you’re doing it wrong”

Please tell me you’ve seen “Mr. Mom”. In this movie, Michael Keaton is staying at home while his wife works and as he tries to learn the ropes of being a mom, he drops off his kids at school. He enters the wrong way and people keep yelling at him (including his kid) “you’re doing it wrong!”. That’s how I felt today. I must be doing something wrong. It shouldn’t be this hard.

It’s Veteran’s Day and so nobody had school today. I woke up with a plan. I was going to make this a very productive and wonderful day, not one of those laze-about-do-nothing-wastes-of-a-day. But within the first 45 minutes of the day I should’ve realized that I needed to simply put on a movie for the boys and crawl back into bed and hide. Just getting my boys to do their normal everyday stuff was awful! Getting dressed, making their beds …. it was painful! All I heard myself saying was, “stop, no! Are you dressed yet? What are you doing? Why would you hurt him like that? You go on time out. You clean up. Don’t touch the baby. Stop. Switch, you go on time out and you get dressed. Do I have to do it like this? Can’t you get dressed without me?” …. awful. For 45 full minutes. No let up.

Daniel sweetly texted me this morning that he missed me and I texted back that I was losing my mind and it was only 8:30 am. He said I should forget about clean rooms and just go on a bike ride. So I took his advice. The boys had already finished cleaning their room, so we hopped in the car and ran some errands, then came home and I asked if they wanted to go for a bike ride. Yes! Yipee! Noah was in and Liam sounded mildly happy about it too, so we got home and I gathered some waters, pumped up tires, found helmets for everyone and we were off! … except for Liam.

Liam started saying that he didn’t know how to ride and his steering wheel always got all wiggly. I kept reassuring him that it would be great! So we started on our way. It took 10 minutes and some serious coaxing and positivity from Noah and me to get Liam around the first corner. By the time we got down the street and to the train tracks (we live right next to the train tracks), Liam was in tears.

I used a myriad of tactics with Liam to get him on his bike and going. I started with positivity and encouragement, “Wow, look at how far you got that time? Good job!”. Didn’t seem to help. So I tried sounding confident, “you can do this, just get on and let’s go! Come on, you can do it!”. But that proved fruitless. So I said, “Well, Noah and I are going to go on this bike ride and you can either choose to come or walk your bike the whole way. You’re choice.” He chose to cry very loudly and walk/trip next to his bike, then scream, “Stop! You’re going too fast! I can’t keep up”, to which, I responded, “that’s because you’re not actually riding your bike, get on and ride!” Seriously, it was not going well.

I’m sorry to say it ended in many tears from Liam and me losing it and yelling/threatening him that if he didn’t be quiet, get on his bike, and ride I’d punish him. Yes, it deteriorated quickly from a “fun break on a holiday” to “the worst bike ride ever”. But after the negative encouragement, Liam got on and did it. Then we got back to our block and I made him ride around the block twice and he didn’t fall once. He turned, slowed down and sped up and he did great. But he was just not confident that he could do it. Oh man, learning that lesson, that way, was terrible. I must be doing this wrong, right? Happy little bike ride? … fail.

Then we got home and had some downtime of just reading. During that time, I fed Ray and put him down for a nap. I was picking up my room when they were done with reading. I told them they could watch cartoons. I was still stressed out from the morning. It’s funny to see what I did to release pressure … I cleaned my bathroom. What??! I know. I don’t know why. That’s just what I found myself doing. Then I put on Jillian and worked out like a maniac.

Then I felt like an hour of TV time was plenty and we needed to get back on track for the day – we still had plans. The bike ride was a disaster, but we could come back from this. I decided we would try khanacademy.org. It’s a learning site. So I set up Noah and Liam on different computers and felt good about this. Here we go – learning! I would only say this was successful in the fact that we did it. Was it pleasant? no. Did the boys learn something new? I don’t think so. Did I go crazy running from the front room to the family room trying to help them navigate the site? yes. Did both of them complain? yes, differently though – Noah said he was bored and Liam said it was too hard. Yet I had them working at different levels … sigh. I must’ve been doing it wrong. Learning moment? … fail.

At this point, I kind of gave up and let them play games on the computer while I showered. Now it’s 4 pm and I have no more plans. Motherhood always seems to kick my trash and I don’t know why. I must be doing it wrong.

But right now, the house is quiet, the boys are upstairs playing and Ray is crawling around and coming up to me and smiling. Maybe I should leave well enough alone and make a bunting for our thankful tree. hmmm.

Good way to spend September

It’s still pretty hot around here … like in the 80’s kind of hot … like you wonna go to a Farmer’s Market and then play in a fountain kind of hot. So we did. Aria, Christina and I went to this Framer’s Market in Rancho Cucamonga at this shopping center called Victoria Gardens. And it was a beautiful day. Sometimes the boys are crazy and fight and it’s too hot, but not today. It was wonderful. We bought flavored honey sticks (they had rootbeer honey!), strawberries and the best hummus on the planet along with the greatest pita bread. Then we went to the fountain, let the boys run around in it and sat and talked on a bench in the shade with the babies. Dream. come. true. The boys continued playing by running around on the grass once they dried off from the fountain. And we watched and handed out food and water when they ran by. So good. So fun. Such an awesome way to blow a September day, eh? This is Fall around here I guess :)

Honey sticks

Luca turning his honey sticks into, of course, a gun.

Now this is a rare siting … Rocco in a picture.


I blame ridiculous faces like this on Daniel. Daniel makes the same faces when I hold up the camera ….

At least this shows how Noah has lost his two front teeth and his adult teeth are coming in.

Now Luca is just a child model. He is so gorgeous. His luscious lips (which you HAVE to appreciate in person) and the perfect tan skin and deep, dark, brown eyes. He is just so pretty!

you’re welcome.

Then there’s Chiara, who is THE perfect baby. She was sick today. But still beautiful. I look like someone hit me in the face with a frying pan when I’m sick, but Chiara dons sickness a little better than me.

Emily painted her toes for the day.

Thank you Daniel for creating weirdos that don’t know how to pose for a picture …

Enzo, telling me something.

Zacky. He is fun. He embodies what fun is.

He is being a zombie in this picture.

A little chilly with the wind blowing, but it was 84 degrees. It must be so fun to be Zacky. Eating pita bread, running in fountains, being a zombie for a minute. It’s the life basically.

The sun dried tomato hummus. Ben is taking a swipe with pita bread. So yummy.

Nice moves in the water by Liam.

Noah knows how to get air when he jumps. Noah is a fierce player.

Emily got in on the fountain action too. This girl is a thrill seeker!

Ray … not so much of a thrill seeker.

The scene

Cousins. I don’t know if I ever tire of seeing my boys lined up next to their cousins, enjoying life.

The End :) courtesy of the Blackburn boys.

christmas in june

It was a crazy morning. It’s not always like that around here, but the before school rush can be a bear and this morning it was. It finished with me waiting and yelling from the car for Liam to get in the car so we wouldn’t be late to his last day of preschool and him running out of the house saying, “Mommy! I have a surprise for you!” As a mom, you have to always be excited about their surprises and in my mind, I thought, “This will turn things around this morning.” Then Liam held out the above pictured dirty sock wrapped in crumpled paper and started laughing hysterically. I told him to get in the car and off we went.

Man, I love my little boys, but sometimes they drive me crazy. And the end of the school year is such  wild time. I was talking to Les about this. The end of the year feels like Christmas time. Too much to do. In December there are gifts and parties and the calendar is packed, we’re usually packing to go visit someone …. it’s nuts and hard to enjoy “the season”. The end of the year, in June, is crazy too! There are presents for teachers – and not just anything, you want to give a heartfelt, meaningful, timeless gift that’s not food, but tells the teacher how much they have meant in your child’s life …. then there’s end of the year parties and helping in the classroom, making treats, turning the house upside down for the lost library books Noah will have to pay for now, Field Day, End of the year Picnics to attend, graduation parties. Oh geez, it’s stressing me out just writing it all.

Yesterday it took me all day to blog about Ray and his birthday, but I wanted to have it documented, or it doesn’t happen. I still have so much to blog about: Noah’s choir concert at school and Gammie came to visit! But last night, as I was desperately trying to finish up the post about Ray, I was kind of putting off dinner and making any decisions about it. I think I was secretly hoping that if I didn’t do anything about it, maybe something would magically appear on the table, or maybe Daniel would just take over. No such luck. I ended up doing it all – making salmon, rice and salad and finishing the cupcakes for Ray’s birthday and doing it all form scratch. I made the dressing for the salad, frosting for the cupcakes and sauce for the salmon all from scratch because I didn’t have anything else or anyone else to pick up the slack. Stuff had to get done, people had to eat and I had to do it.

I woke up this morning with the same feeling – just wishing that all responsibilities would somehow dissipate if I slowed down or didn’t step in to do it. Sadly, motherhood doesn’t work that way, it just makes things worse. Kids are late to school, stuff doesn’t get cleaned and people don’t eat food. I guess it will be lazy summer days soon enough and it’s all about endurance, but man, I wish it would slow down.

I’ve got 45 minutes before I need to pick up Liam, then it’s off to the races again – playdate at my house after preschool, the boys’ laundry (it’s getting bad, no socks – thank heavens they can wear flip flops now), sweeping the kitchen floor, Ray’s afternoon nap, cleaning the bathroom, food shopping, preparing for the Activity Day Girls’ party tomorrow, MY laundry …. sigh. I will not get a shower, I haven’t eaten breakfast and working out? haha, that’s not happening. I’m drowning in housework, end of the year work and forget about all those OTHER plans I have for “spare time”, like preparing a summer routine for the boys complete with learning activities and outings and playdates – or finishing the “organize your house” plan I came up with after the Relief Society lesson I went to last week – or going through and purging stuff in the boys’ closet and under my bed and in the basement. I have lofty goals and plans, but it seems like I’ll never get it done.

I guess I need to focus. One day, one activity at a time and enjoy it. For instance, I am going to post this, then walk into the kitchen and eat breakfast, then get in the car and watch Liam graduate from preschool and I will feel proud of myself for getting the gifts done for Liam’s teachers already. I have to say, it was beautiful to see Liam walking down the hallway of his preschool with a jar of roses in each hand. That reminds me, I wanted to write a special note to Mrs. Yessler …. here it goes …

The roses and cards in my center console on the way to preschool.

Star Wars Birthday party, part 2

These boys had so much fun running around in their Jedi robes. In fact, I wish I had just let them do that … for like 2 hours. Instead, I spent all this time coming up with a Jedi Training Obstacle course, which only lasted a few minutes and was never seen or used again. Also, I made too much food. There were just snacks, but they were sugary, so by the time cake and ice cream came around, half the kids said they didn’t want ay cuz they were full. Which is a huge shame because then I was stuck with 7 layers of a massive helmet head cake. oh man, I’m making Daniel take that to work to get rid of it. I wonder if the people at Ford will be shocked to see a Captain Rex helmet head of cake in the break room.

Anyway, here are a bunch of pictures of the playing that went on. There are probably too many, but it will make you feel like you were really there :)

The faces in the above picture crack me up. It was very intense in the backyard.

Noah’s stance in this picture above is like a classic fencing move or something. You can see that Nicholas is about to get it right in the kisser.

It looks like it was a warm day, right? It wasn’t. But the sun came out a little in between clouds and it stayed around 58-60 degrees, so not terrible.

Daniel took all these outdoor shots and he said watching the boys fight was like watching a flock of birds. They would change direction and all move in a flock-like formation.

This is Jedi Training, part one. We had some older friends, Antonio and Alejandro be our Jedi Masters and they taught us some moves.

And then Darth (Daniel) showed up. Daniel was awesome. He took Liam’s 4 year old Darth Vader costume and pinned it to a black shirt and got the belt on and made it work. Then he took a serious beating from the kids. It was hilarious to watch. Here are too many pictures of the onslaught:

And yes, that is Daniel light sabering the Birthday boy.


Liam landing the final blow. That’s my boy, hitting him while he’s down.

Jumping over the pit of carkoon.


The piñata fiasco … the hook at the top came out, so Daniel tied a rope around it and it worked. Not that the kids cared. They were too busy fighting each other in the front yard.

We finally gave Liam the light saber stick that was much tougher and had him finish it off. Look at Alonzo’s face … he’s excited!

Funny story: So, we lit up the candles on the cake and were about to start singing hapy birthday to Liam, but he immediately blew out the candles. So we started again. We got about 75% through the song again and he blew them out again. Oh well. we gave up singing.