Friday, December 18, 2009

A Home for Baby Leopard

Caleb has a little baby leopard toy that he likes to carry all over. The trouble is, it's a little bit too little and Caleb is always setting it down and forgetting where he left it. Thus, looking for Baby Leopard is an oft-repeated daily ritual. I wish I could stick some kind of GPS tracking device on him. Anyway, Caleb decided that Baby Leopard needed a home and so he set to work and built quite a magnificent block castle all by himself. Caleb pointed out to me that the yellow blocks inside the house made a "really fancy floor". Nothing but the best for Baby Leopard. Maybe he can live here now and won't go missing quite so often.

Ooooo Yes, It's Pajama Time!

We got out the new pajamas for the boys a little early this year, partly because Dallin and Caleb's are seasonal and so it's more fun to wear them leading up to Christmas. Wearing Santa jammies in March might not be quite as much fun. Also, Taylor is outgrowing all his pajamas like crazy, and so he really needed some that actually come down to his wrists and ankles! The boys were pretty thrilled with their pajamas and wanted to pose by the Christmas tree with them. They were pretty cute!

Group Brothers Hug!

Travis was pretty disappointed not to receive new pajamas too, but he put on a brave face for the camera. Looks like my shopping isn't done after all!

Friday, December 4, 2009

A Very Merry Bissett Christmas Album

Here is another in the Bissett Boys' series of holiday albums. Dallin once again brings home some great song selections from Preschool and has taught most of them to Caleb. Highlights in this video include Taylor in character as a shepherd (though he mostly succeeds in appearing to be Russian), Caleb as a "poor bee" (mostly because Dallin dressed up as a sheep for Taylor's performance), and the boys all displaying a complete disregard for the lyrics to "Jingle Bell Rock". Who knew that the phrase "miss all the fun" was in there? What's missing from the footage is the bee threatening to sting the sheep and the shepherd cheering the bee on. We hope you enjoy this little video from the Bissett Boys in the spirit of the season!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Best Birthday of Dallin's Whole Life!

Dallin turned 5 years old today! The day began at 6:30 am, with Dallin appearing at our bedside and saying, in a very casual voice, "So, I just remembered that today is my birthday." And so it was. 

Dallin had a fun, happy day. We opened presents in the morning and then baked a volcano birthday cake. We had a visit at Great-Grandma and Grandpa Smith's house, and then received visits from Grandpa Smith (Grandma Smith was still away at a family wedding), Great-Grandpa Regehr, and Grandpa & Grandma Bissett. Dallin declared that it was "the best birthday of my entire life!" We're not too sure how many other birthdays he remembers so far, but it's good to know that they're getting better! Dallin is such a fun little character and we love him very much. We're so glad he's in our family.

Dallin, full of anticipation for present-opening!

A plush woolly mammoth that Dallin had long wished for, but hadn't actually ever seen anywhere. He was just sure his idea must exist somewhere, and it became his mother's job to find it (which I did!). He immediately named it Tuskers, a name he had picked out long ago.

This is a book all about prehistoric Sea Monsters and is based on Dallin's favourite National Geographic documentary. He learned about Tylosaurs from this show and has become fascinated with them. Another of his gifts was a small, plastic Tylosaur replica.

Our Little Wolf Pack
Taylor and Caleb received brother presents on Dallin's birthday so that they would all have matching wolf T-shirts and binoculars. The boys have decided that the binoculars provide "scent vision" for when they play wolf pack together. That is, the binoculars allow them to "see" smells, in order to locate prey, other pack members, and enemies. Daddy is usually the enemy bear and they all howl to warn each other when the bear is approaching. They play some variation of this great game almost every evening. Now we have "scent vision" to add to it!

The best part of making a birthday cake, is licking the bowl clean!

Messy Hands!

Mardi made a volcano cake for Dallin, since he has long been fascinated with mountains that spew fire. Daddy brought home some dry ice and we placed it in a hollowed out spot in the top in order to make the volcano smoke. It was such great fun!

I love the look on everyone's face here. As we added more dry ice, the whole table became covered in mist. Dallin and Taylor are just loving it, but Caleb looks as though he's a little nervous about it touching him! Dallin's new Tylosaur can be seen beside the volcano cake.

Caleb did get into the spirit of things as soon as he realized the dry ice didn't actually do any damage. We've never had so much fun with a birthday cake before! We spent a long time just playing with it! Easy to make, cheap, and a big hit.

We put several sparklers around the top to make an "eruption".

Blowing Out the Candles

Dallin, with a little toy fish aquarium from Grandpa and Grandma Bissett, and showing off those beautiful eyes.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Dallin's Great Skills

At the end of the summer, Dallin learned to ride his two-wheeler without any training wheels. He was very pleased with himself, and expresses himself quite well in this short video. We're sure you'll agree that this was indeed "the Bissetts' lucky day!" (But Mardi really hopes he's wrong about the African mission.)

Monday, November 2, 2009

Happy Halloween from the Bissett Brothers!

We had a fun Halloween! The boys loved trick-or-treating, and sang Halloween songs for all of their grandparents we visited in town. (See the video below for a sampling of some of their songs.) We were lucky to have such mild weather that made walking around quite pleasant. Hope everyone had a great night!

Three boys in their matching skeleton shirts and their carved jack o' lanterns.

Caleb discovers the distinct aroma of pumpkin innards: "What's that stinky smell?"

Taylor enjoys cleaning his pumpkin a lot more if he has a rubber glove to avoid the slimy texture.

Caleb doesn't enjoy it even with the glove.

The face says it all.

Dallin, of course, usually has a different opinion on things. He filled up his bowl with innards and declared that he was calling his new dish "Ogre's Delight".

Dallin was quite delighted with how gross the whole experience was. No rubber glove for him!

Dallin carefully directed Daddy during the carving process.

Taylor's black rat costume for his school party and parade. Grandma Smith gave him the silver pumpkin with a rat head and tail poking out of it.

Dallin the Shark and Caleb the Bee at Taylor's school Halloween Parade. Mardi's mom made a shark costume years ago that we wanted to borrow for Dallin, but we couldn't find it anywhere, so Mardi and her mom had to sew up a new one. Dallin was really pleased with it! It seemed to be sufficiently fierce-looking.

Taylor, in his dinosaur trick-or-treating costume (It was warmer than the rat one and Taylor had had a hard time deciding which one to be, so it worked out well.) Caleb was a very enthusiastic trick-or-treater and quickly caught on under the tutelage of his brothers.

Dallin the Shark. Sorry about the blurry shot. We'll have to re-do that one.

Caleb, our little bumblebee, absolutely loved his costume. He had been wearing it for about three days at this point. He especially loves the stinger on the back and enjoys backing into people, poking them with it and saying, "Sting!" Mardi found the little bee basket at Value Village for $1 and it finished things off just perfectly.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Bissett Boys Present: A Very Spooky Halloween Album

Dallin and Taylor have been learning a myriad of Halloween tunes at school lately. Preschool has been a gold mine for Dallin - he didn't know that so many great songs existed! The boys put on a concert for us and we have it reproduced here for your viewing enjoyment. At almost 5 minutes long, however, this album is recommended for serious fans only.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Adventures in Fencing, Part 45 (approximately)

So, after much work in his few hours of daylight after his real job was done (and some more work done in complete darkness), Travis succeeded in getting our new fence ready for its concrete curb to be poured. This is the final step before we can install the actual walls of the fence. Everyone was assembled and ready to work when the concrete mixer and the pumper truck pulled up at 7:30 am. The pumper truck was supposed to make the pouring much easier as the guys would not have to be running a wheelbarrow to fill the narrow forms. Anyway, the pumper truck extended its mighty arm and the truck promptly tipped, and almost fell right over, supported by only one of its "sturdy jacks" as Dallin called it. As a result, the boom arm crashed to the ground, narrowly missing Travis and his helpers on the ground, as well as our house and fence posts. 

Very fortunately, nobody was hurt and nothing was damaged, with the notable exception of the pumper truck. The situation soon attracted a sizable crowd and they were treated to full morning of entertainment as various methods were employed to hoist the truck and its arm back up. This involved about three hours, a tractor and truck or two, a chain (which subsequently broke part way through the operation, sending the arm crashing back down to earth and nearly hitting our house again), a bunch of puzzled-looking men, and an evacuation order for Mardi and the boys inside the house. All in all, it was a productive day and Travis did eventually get his curb poured...but they had to use the wheelbarrow after all.

That drain pipe on the right is on our house. The boom was literally a few feet away from it.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Dallin's Sandpile Construction "Team"

We had a great weekend on September 18 - 20 when Jeff came home from his mission in California. As many as were able came home to Raymond for the weekend and we had a good time with siblings and cousins. (We missed all of you who couldn't be there.) Our boys love playing in Grandpa and Grandma Smith's big sandpile, so they started doing some digging. Soon, Uncle Chris and Uncle Jonathan came to do some heavy-duty excavating, and construction began on a big volcano with a waterfall, river, and an island in the middle. Dallin thought this was great and immediately began taking charge of his "team", as he called it. We found he was a tough boss when he admonished Jonathan and told him to "keep working!" He could give credit where it was due when he told Chris and Jonathan, "good job, you two" as they lined the waterfall area with rocks. Dallin also has a talent for delegating tasks, but he soon found out that he isn't allowed to delegate his jobs to his mother.
L-R: Daniel, Evan, Caleb (in full leap), and Dallin. Caleb was busily parking all the diggers on the island. Uncle Jonathan built a little bridge that could withstand even Caleb stepping on it.

L-R: Evan, Daniel (sporting a stylish buzz after a run-in with his cousin of similar age and some scissors), and Dallin.

Caleb and Dallin, working to finish the wall surrounding the moat.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Haircuts and Wagon Rides

My boys don't like haircuts. Taylor bears with them very well now, but the younger two make no secret of the fact that they don't appreciate my work. Since I really don't have much idea about what I'm doing when I cut it, they're basically my guinea pigs as I attempt to save a few bucks.
Ha! I love this face. Caleb was not happy when it was his turn and I couldn't resist a picture of his little depressed state. It looks like life has dealt him a terrible blow.

The "after" shot! Caleb is really happy now because I had just announced that he was all done.

It didn't occur to me to take Dallin's "before" photo, since I cut his hair first. However, he wanted his "after" shot taken in order to practise his smile for his school pictures tomorrow.

The boys love wagon rides, courtesy of Daddy. He runs all over with them at high speeds, over bumps and hills and straight into the pile of gravel in front of our house. The boys shriek with laughter and love every minute of it.

Three Boys in a Wagon
We're amazed that they actually all fit.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Corn Maze (or should it be Maize?)

September 16, 2009
We picked Travis up at work and headed out to the Lethbridge Corn Maze this evening. The boys were anxious to "get lost and never find our way out!" as Dallin put it. We did the trivia maze first. Various directions were given for getting through the maze depending on which answer was selected. The correct answers got you correct directions, but wrong answers led you down the wrong path. We're proud to report that we aced "Bible Trivia" and therefore didn't get lost and made it out before the sun went down,  much to Dallin's disappointment. The boys also enjoyed visiting with the animals which were on the same farm as the maze.

Three boys, trailing after their Daddy in the corn maze.

Caleb was exciting to discover the fourth signpost in the trivia maze. Really excited.

Mardi and Caleb, in the corn maze.

Dallin, playing jungle explorer in the maze.

Caleb, playing peek-a-boo with a cob of corn.

Three Bissett Boys in the Corn

Caleb finds a piece of real corn!

Mardi and Taylor: We made it to the tower in the centre of the maze and climbed up to see the view.

Travis and Mardi: We call this "Self-Portrait with Corn".

Dallin, visiting with the donkeys on the farm. The light grey one was immediately christened "Eeyore". Caleb was hunting for thistles for him to eat, because everyone knows that's what Eeyore likes best.

The little pony on the farm was a big favourite with all three boys.