Sunday, March 29, 2015


I've heard those stories about kids who have a favorite outfit that they wear as often as they can, to strange places, sometimes refusing to take it off to launder or bathe, etc., but we've never had that experience in our home...until now. Carver inherited a large box of clothes from his cousins, and one of the treasures contained therein was a Batman® costume. Fuel and fire finally met.
The Crusader Without the Cape
Upon first sight, Carver insisted that he try it on. After a few hours, it was bedtime and we suggested that he replace the costume with some pajamas. He would have none of it, so we finally convinced him to put on a shirt underneath the costume for warmth (the back is wide open). It's been rare to catch him in anything else for the past couple of days. He even wore it to a little performance Avey was doing at her school to promote heart health. Naturally, everyone thought he was adorable, thus only reinforcing his perception of being freaking awesome with the costume on.

It brings back fond memories of my brothers and me running around in similar superhero costumes that my mother had made (those actually had capes). We spent countless hours pretending to fight bad guys and rescue citizens. The irony in all of this is that Carver has never seen a Batman® show, and really has no idea who he is. Carver puts on the mask, gives me a sinister look, and says "I'm a vampire!" 
Easter Egg Hunt 2015
Fortunately, Carver graciously allowed us to dress him in a shirt and tie for church today, but he made us hang his costume in a prominent place until he can get back to it.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Sandy Eggo

The main event of this week was my trip to San Diego, California for the annual conference of the American Psychology-Law Society. I presented two recent projects of mine, including a small portion of my dissertation, so it was a really great opportunity for my curriculum vitae, and for some networking with people in Illinois who may have some advice about doing corrections research in the state. 
At the Bhutanese Shrine on UTEP Campus
The downside, of course, was that it left Kira home with three needy kiddies. By her account, this was probably the easiest of my many trips in the last year. The kids are a little older, Carver did not have to go to the hospital with pneumonia, Hakan fell in love with food, and Avey has been obsessed with getting a scooter, so she was on her very best behavior. Naturally, Kira deserves much of the credit, as she found the ability to roll with things a little more than usual.
Freshmen Keep Getting Younger
The separation was not without its struggles though. Hakan has developed another stuffy nose, after never completely recovering from the last one. He gave Kira a pretty rough night last night, so it's a good thing I'm home to provide an extra pair of hands. Hopefully we can get back to a normal routine (where levels of chaos are only moderate) soon.
This week's little gem involves Carver, yet again. At grandma's house this afternoon, Carver was playing in the backyard. Per the norm, he was kicking balls around and looking for sticks. He came across an old flagpole that might attach to an ATV, and waved it around like a sword for a few minutes. When he dropped it, he complained that his hands hurt. Quick investigation revealed that the pole was made of fiberglass. D'oh! We washed his hands thoroughly and removed his clothes so as not to spread any more of the substance. Because we didn't have a change of clothes with us, my cousin offered his undershirt. The shirt was much larger than Carver, so he ended up looking like a little ghost or angel. To help keep his hands from being irritated, my grandmother found some garden gloves to put over his sensitive hands, which he thought were awesome. He proceeded to act like a little ghost with big yellow-and-red hands the rest of the evening:
What's perhaps even more hilarious is that when we arrived home, I offered to help Carver get in his jammies, but he insisted that he would rather sleep in the large shirt. That was fine with me, and then, just before bed, he referred to it as a "dress." 

He sure keeps us guessing.

Sunday, March 15, 2015


You parents all know what a handful children can sometimes be. Just when things are quiet you realize that you should probably panic. We were reminded of that just a few days ago.
Things were running as normal in our little household. Spring Break was in full swing, so Avey was trying to keep herself busy, Hakan was doing his best to find new places to explore, and Carver was...up to no good, as it turns out.
He was off in the nether regions of our home, entertaining himself, when Kira discovered that he had locked himself in our room. He has been keeping a small set of keys with him at all times, apparently very interested in security. He pretends to lock and unlock our front door a lot. Unfortunately, he overestimated his powers when he turned the little lock on our doorknob.
As a veteran adventurer, he was unmoved by the inability to leave our room, and was of no help trying to unlock the door from the inside. The knob has a tiny hole to unlock it in just such emergencies, but Kira could not get the tools she tried to work. After some thought, she decided that she could remove the doorknob entirely or just remove the screen to our room.
Before actually going through with it, she decided to call the complex office to see which would be more expensive to replace if she did permanent damage. Fortunately, they sent a maintenance man right over, who removed the doorknob and set the little unrepentant toddler free. 

It could have been much worse - for example, had Hakan been in there with him. We got a little tutorial and some practice with how to open the doors through that little hole from my wonderful Auntie, so we are feeling much more prepared should he feel the need for some privacy again. 

Needless to say, Kira is thrilled that Spring Break is now officially over, and she can be spread ever so slightly less thin. 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Turning Three

Carver has officially circled the sun three full times. That was cause for celebration indeed! He had a grand time as the center of attention, and his great aunt made the party a grand event. We had fun earlier this week looking back at some of the videos of Carver when he was Hakan's age. It is surprising and scary to think how far he's come during our stay in El Paso. 
Carver at 10 Months
We sure love this boy! It is perhaps even more frightening and exciting to think of how quickly Hakan will be wearing Carver's shoes and racing him down the hall. He has been training (albeit reluctantly) with his standing, and enjoys taking a few steps as long as he's got something firm to hold onto. He's paced the length of the couch many times.
We are glad to have Spring Break this week, although I will need to still spend as much time as I can on campus, picking away at my dissertation. Avey is most excited about the time off, as she is usually quite content to just relax at home reading, working on art projects, and playing with her younger brothers. Carver, always the adventurous one, tends to want to explore the farthest reaches of our neighborhood, as long as he has his foam sword or a stick of some sort to protect him.
We look forward to many more adventures before this guy turns 4!

Sunday, March 1, 2015


Carver's going to be 3 this week. It's a little sad and a little exciting to have him getting older. 

This morning Avey and I were wrapping a gift for him in her room. Carver walked in just as we had placed the last strip of tape on his gift. Naturally, he asked what we were doing. Avey explained that we were wrapping his present. He was excited and, seeing the roll of wrapping paper on the floor, he concluded that his present must be concealed inside. He picked it up and unrolled the rest of the paper that was on it, then squealed with delight when he discovered the treasure inside - a cardboard roll! He thanked Avey and me several times for the great present while he danced through our rooms using it as a telescope, a sword, a walking stick, and so on. 
At least he is easy to please. With any luck he'll enjoy his real presents half as much.

It was another busy week trying to knock out more of my dissertation, and trying to keep the insanity of the household within acceptable limits. Avey was preoccupied with her science fair this week, and Hakan has been busy exploring every square inch of the bottom 24 inches of the place. He'll be walking around the place in no time.