Monday, December 24, 2012

Dear Santa

Coop wrote a letter to Santa this year:

"Deer Santa Claus.  My dad is beeing bad and bosy.  I hav bin good.  I want a castle and the ice cream set Iv wanted and a grinch costume and a bat costume.  [heart] Cooper."

So about this ice cream set.... Coop and I visited his friend Henry, who's five, and Henry's sister Caroline, who just turned two.  Caroline has this small plastic ice cream set:

Coop played with it when we were there, and he insists that he wants one of his very own.  "Henry has one," he explained to Alan.  Um.... no... Henry doesn't.  Henry's sister, who's two, has one.  And just for the record, I refuse.... I mean, Santa refuses... to buy a 18-36-month-old toy for the almost six-year-old.  Anyway, we'll see what Santa comes up with...

Letter addressed and ready to mail!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

More xmas decorations

I had some of Cooper's artwork from last xmas framed for the mantel:
"Roodolf," ""Frostee," and Santa.

Alan, Cooper, and I got to be a part of the Baker float for the Baldwin xmas parade.  Alan was a reindeer; Coop and I rode in the truck, wearing Santa hats, waving out the window:

We found a small tree for Cooper's room.  He promptly made aluminum foil ornaments for it:

And he made this "sleigh" using construction paper, tape, jingle bells and dental floss:


Monday, December 17, 2012

Lost tooth!!

Coop's had a wiggly tooth for a couple of weeks or so.  He's clearly not like me -- I'd've played with that sucker and had it yanked out in a matter of days.  But not Coop.  He mostly left it alone and just checked it each night to see if it was still wiggly.
At school on Friday, though, he apparently forgot about it, bit on his sleeve (because he's a five-year-old boy and I guess they do that?), and when he jerked his sleeve out of his mouth, his tooth came with it!

He couldn't find it right away, so his classmates had to help.  Olivia found it, I guess.  And then Raintree, accustomed to children losing teeth at school, gave him a tooth-shaped box necklace to hold his tooth for the rest of the day.

Coop left it under his pillow, of course, along with the following note for the tooth fairy:
"Deer tooth faree.  I lost my tooth then I found it!!  I hope you like it.  From Cooper.  to tooth faree.  it's in this box."

The tooth fairy brought him $5 because it was his first tooth.  She's going to get substantially cheaper with subsequent teeth, I'm sure.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

More Thanksgiving break fun

Coop made this turkey (??) centerpiece out of pens, a rag, his allowance money, and tape.

We killed some time over break at the new Lawrence play land.  Coop went right for the costume section:

And then found some great glasses and a duck puppet that quacked.

We went to a fun new pizza place in Topeka where Cooper sat back, crossed his legs, and promptly put away three pieces:

Vada helped Coop put ornaments on our tree:

Coop's 2012 ornament:

This was the year he started organized sports through the Baldwin City Rec Commission, including t-ball, soccer (or as he calls it, "soccer ball"), and basketball.  (No football, but it came with the ornament.)

Monday, December 10, 2012

Vada comes to visit!

Vada (and her mom Carmen) came to visit us over Thanksgiving, and the kids had a great time playing together (and with Grandma and Grandpa).
Potato heads:

Love sac:

Watching Brer Rabbit, one of Grandpa Cecil's favorites.  In fact, just after I took this photo, the kids got up to play and Grandpa Cecil stayed another 30 minutes watching the movie...

Hungry Hippos:

Santa costumes:

Decorating turkey-shaped sugar cookies:

Bed Bugs:

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Thanksgiving Feasts

We went to the annual Raintree Thanksgiving Day feast this year.  Coop wrote out a menu, which is difficult to see, but includes items such as "rlz" (rolls), "turkee," "froot salid," "and "pumpkin cace" (cake).

Coop enjoying the Feast:

At home, Coop set up his "restaurant" in the basement to serve us delicious things like pineapple and pizza.

On Thanksgiving Day itself, we went to our church's big Thanksgiving meal:

The dessert nook:

When I asked Coop what his favorite part of the meal was, he said the turkey, which surprised me because he doesn't really like turkey.  And then he clarified:  "the turkey made out of junk food."
Ah...yes.  That makes much more sense.

Monday, December 03, 2012


We signed Coop up for basketball through the Baldwin Rec Commission.  Unlike soccer and t-ball, we don't have a team for regular practices and then organized games.  Instead, we all meet on Saturday mornings for a lesson in some of the fundamentals.
First week, dribbling:

Maybe not Coop's strong suit.

The next week, shooting.  Sort of.

He doesn't seem to have/apply the strength necessary to dribble or shoot just yet.  But he pays attention during the lessons, isn't crazy silly (which I count as a huge win), and seems to enjoy himself.  We'll go with it for now!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Leftover early-November photos

At the big Halloween store, we bought skulls that dissolve in water and have three eyeballs hidden inside.  Eyeball soup?

We then took those eyeballs and a few glow sticks for a spooky bath:

Coop voted with us on election day.
1. Coop voted half Republican and half Democrat. Which means he'll fit in well with this family.
2. He mostly voted for people whose signs he'd seen or whose names he could read (sorry Tobias Schlingensiepen). Which means he'll likely fit in well with the vast majority of the American population. 

Coop finally (finally!) finished his US map at school.  This has taken him months.
 He had to trace each state, and then punch it out using a push pin all around the edges, and then glue everything in place.  Whew.

Being silly at bedtime:

Painting a haunted house picture:

Monday, November 26, 2012


1. We read books at bedtime for about 30-45 minutes.  And then Coop has some lights on time by himself to read.  And then we turn the lights off (which in theory means it's time to go to sleep).
I busted him one night huddled by his nightlight still trying to read:

2.  One afternoon, I went outside to find Cooper and heard him crying.  When I asked him what was wrong, he said he didn't know.  And then I asked how long he'd been outside crying.  "Since I killed that big grasshopper."  Ah... I see....
We spent another 30 minutes or so just hanging out on the porch swing not talking while he pondered whatever his five-year-old mind was thinking....

3.  One Friday, Coop's school was closed so Alan took him to the office.  I guess the day went ok.  Coop played with some legos and spent an hour or so talking to the dean.  And apparently (I stayed out of most of the details of the day), Alan just left Coop in his office while he taught class.  Alan came back to this note:
"Ie left the ofes   al bee bac soon."  = I left the office.  I'll be back soon.

Monday, November 19, 2012

In which I confess my baking (decorating) failure

Coop's class had a Halloween party, and he wanted to sign up to bring snacks.  Fine.  I can round up 26 baggies of candy corn.  But no.  That simply would not do.  Coop saw these in a magazine and had to have them:
He was a big help making the cupcakes.
(That's a lie.  He only wants to lick the batter.)

I tinkered with the decoration instructions a bit, trying to make things easier on myself and on the teacher who would have to deal with 26 preschool/kindergartners trying to eat these things.

Unfortunately, my test run came out like this:
Kind of looks like a muppet.  But definitely not a witch.

I showed Coop, apologized, and suggested we just do witch hat cupcakes:
He agreed, but only because it meant we could save (and eat!) all of the candy eyeballs I had purchased.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

My boy loves Halloween, cont.

Grandma Joan sent pumpkin leaf bags:

And with even more allowance money, his newest acquisition was a severed leg.  Great.

For actual Halloween evening, Coop dressed in his skeleton costume.  He and Alan went to a kids haunted house at one of Baker's sorority houses. 

The Saturday after Halloween (dressed a pirate), Coop got this sweet Halloween gift bucket from Miss Linda, the cinnamon roll lady from our farmer's market.
She included a cinnamon roll, brownie, and toy skeleton! 
That same day, Coop and I headed up to the big Halloween Express store in Lawrence to check out what they had left (for half price!).  Coop was in heaven looking at all the creepy decorations.  I vetoed most (all) of them.

But we did buy a vampire costume to go with his vampire teeth:

Still running errands that day, I took the vampire to Walmart.  First stop: book section.  Vampire picked out a book and spent the entire boring shopping trip reading in the cart!