The Tovsky Tribe

Chocolates, Cocktails, Friends, Babies...A Girl Should Never Have Just ONE!!

Sunday, March 30, 2008


one, two I love you. Three, four, lets count some more. Five, Six, get your kicks. Seven, Eight, because numbers are great. Nine, Ten, numbers are your friend, let's count them all again.
I know too many rhymes for numbers, too many songs for counting. I count everything, steps, balls, toys, animals. I count these things out loud hoping eventually the boys will start counting. Today was that day. Prior to today, the only counting that was done by either kid was when they were doing something they were not supposed to be and they were imitating me (you have three seconds to sit down, one, two, three.) Today, Chase started counting. He counted 1-6 on his own and made it to ten with a little help. He did it several times just to prove it was not a fluke. Ryder did not count 1-6 but chimed in some numbers when he felt like it. I suspect, in typical Ryder fashion, that he is completely capable of counting to six, or perhaps to ten, but won't really let us know it until he feels like it.

Monday, March 24, 2008

No Like It

Chase has started speaking in sentences. Of course. these sentences are 3 words and sound as if he someone learning english as a second language. I suppose that is not too far from the truth.
According to Wikipedia the definition of a simple sentence is not so simple: In traditional English grammar, a predicate is one of the two main parts of a sentence (the other being the subject, which the predicate modifies). The predicate must contain a verb, and the verb requires, permits or precludes other sentence elements to complete the predicate. With that, "No like it" is a sentence so I commend my son for this, but it did start me wondering. If they are learning language from listening to us talk, and we talk with almost correct grammer almost all of the time, how in his little brain does he formulate No like it? And, if that is the simplest way to get the point across, why is it the english language has complicated things by enforcing verb conjugation?
Chase happens to be a good speaker for his age. Most of what he says is clear and we usually understand whatever point he is trying to get across. When you think about it, it is not the child learning a second language, but the parent. They know exactly what they are saying and we are trying to figure it out. No like it, that is pretty simple, but when Chase is chanting "seeeek" with delight, it takes some thinking he wants to play hide and seek. Or when Ryder shouts with pointed finger "bun" you wonder if perhaps he is talking about a kind of bread, or perhaps a toosie, before you learn he just wants to get his hands on some buttons.
Yes, it is us learning the second language, and I am sure there is no wikepedia definition for their grammar.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

It Computes!

Once Ryder was able to start moving his fingers at his own will his favorite past time has been using these fingers to press buttons. Light switches, remote controls, telephones, all were fun for him. However, his true favorite is the computer. Not a toy computer, or the old keyboard we gave him to bang on, but my computer, or Todd's, or any computer he sees at a restaurant, store, or doctor's office. Sure, a friends computer is perfectly acceptable, lets go there and bang on some keys. Once he was mobile he would move himself right over to the computer. If he is missing, check the computer, you will likely find him. Since, however, Ryder did not have a lot of words he nicknamed the computer something he could say easily..."FWA." Yes, that was his pet nickname for his favorite toy. He used it so authoritatively and consistently that I found myself (and others) calling the machine a "fwa" as well.
Twenty and a half months, the words are starting to be put together by my little engineer and he now calls it a "puter." He says it, now, so naturally, as if he never called it a FWA at all. Yes, it true, time does pass and the things you are teaching them really do, eventually, compute.

Friday, March 21, 2008


It is no easy task to teach your child manners. It is common knowledge that the best way to teach them is by example and I think I say please and thank you often...but do I?
It began with sign language and the boys got it down pretty quickly, rubbing their hands across their chests (please,) and Ryder learned real fast that throwing in a pair of puppy dog eyes never hurt anything. Once they learned to talk they got pretty good at saying please, still with the hand rub and wide open eyes, but usually after a reminder. For whatever reason though, Thank you has been much more difficult to grasp. Ryder has been ok with it, which is ironic since he has far fewer words than Chase. But, he says something with two syllables that sounds a lot like thank you and is usually in proper context. Chase, however, did not say thank you, not on his own, not with a reminder. When I would say, "Chase say thank you" he would look at me with his dimples and simply say "you're welcome." I was not sure how to correct him. It seems we have come to a turning point, however, Chase has begun with his thank you's this week and usually without a reminder. Ryder hands him his milk, which he does often, Chase looks at him and says thank you! I heard the words several times today alone and it is always rewarding to know they are listening, and eventually they do learn.
This is Chase, Ryder and I at Aunt Carri's birthday celebration. It also happens to be St. Patrick's day and our Creative Parenting Class homework was to wear green. Who knew I had enough green to go around.

Monday, March 17, 2008


The boys have been sitting on the Elmo potty with a bit more regularity these days. It is now a part of our bedtime routine. This morning, however, the boys asked with smiles on their faces to sit on the potty. Quickly we raced up the stairs. Once in the bathroom the boys actually pushed each other out of the way in order to be the one on the potty first. Fully clothed, Chase sat down. But, since they had to get their pants and diapers off, Ryder had the chance to sit. He sat, he peed, he applauded and then he got up allowing Chase a turn. Chase has not been so comfortable sitting on Elmo, and had yet to actually make a siss. He sat down all stiff, almost as if there were pins on the seat. I knew he would never pee so tensed up so I told him simply to relax. He looked at me, doe-eyed, and repeated, "relax!." which made me laugh. I said, "that's right buddy, just relax there." I handed him his step stool with the Chase puzzle, I said, "relax, do your puzzle." He grinned, "relax!" he said, then started playing with the pieces. Amazingly, he did relax, enjoyed sitting there for a few moments despite the fact that he never peed.
Tonight before bed we did our normal routine including sitting on the potty. Ryder sat first, peed within minutes, received his applaud, applauded himself, got his sticker and got up. Now it was Chase's turn, he looked at me as he sat on the potty..."relax!" he said as he reached for his puzzle stool. I giggled and he giggled and then a tinkle. That's right, Chase, finally relaxed, made his first sissy in the potty. We are not sure exactly where this is headed, but Ryder is 4 sissy's in and with Chase conquering his first we are definitely headed in the right direction.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Sesame Street Live

Sesame Street Live came to town last week. When I heard about the show, I was excited, after all part of the thrill of having children is doing all sorts of fun things with them that you think they will never forget, if only they could remember. As soon as they were born I got excited to do things they were far too young to do. Was Sesame Street Live one of those things? After some deliberation and chats with other moms with same aged kids we decided to take Chase and Ryder to see their Sesame friends up close. All in all it was a success. Two 45 minute sets full of song and dance captured the boys attention the whole time. They were enthralled to see Elmo, Big Bird, and Cookie and really excited to see that Jenny, the only non-monster character, carried and played a guitar. They watched, wide-eyed and silent for the duration, though they never danced or sang along. During the intermission they waited patiently for it to begin again, then went right back to standing on our laps as Part 2 began. There was a minor setback when the characters walked around and a monster yet to be identified got within arms reach of us and scared the daylights out of Chase. He jumped into my arms and held me tightly and never fully relaxed again, but luckily he never cried. They stayed until the end of the show, and only pointed at the Elmo balloons never asking to "hold it" as they do (which is fortunate since they were an astonsihing $8 a piece.)
On the way home we talked about the Sesame Street monsters, as we did for days before the show, but they were not too responsive. Turns out, of course, the next day, when asking them about Elmo, all they seemed to remember was Jenny and the guitar. Next time, we will just take them to a rock concert.

Children of all ages are captured by the characters!

Look Daddy, A GUITAR!!
I can almost reach them
Burt and Ernie Share a hug

Interested in seeing more picures of your favorite monsters and the tikes we took to see them, click here

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Just for the record....

Since this is really the only record I am doing. I do own baby books and names have been assigned to each, but not much else is done. Anyway, just for the record, we put Ryder back on the Elmo Potty after his bath tonight and he did in fact make sissy again. I did not realize it happened until I saw the puddle, then we erupted into the cheers and the high fives. He seemed excited, as did we. We are two for two......lets see where it goes.

Chase wanted to sit on Elmo tonight. He was really into it, especially since Ryder did so well. We sat there for 10 minutes or so. He got up a few times to unroll the toilet paper or drop his comb in the big potty. We must have sang a dozen songs, some two or three times, but to no avail. He never actually peed. We encouraged it and told him how proud we were for his trying. Maybe another time.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Happy 20 Month Birthday!!!

Dear Chase and Ryder,
Two days ago you turned 20 months old. I truly can't believe that you are nearing that two mark. The time is sure passing by so quickly. At 20 months you are both full of energy, you have senses of humor and love to be silly, and your love affair with Barney continues.
Verbally, Chase you continue to impress with your expansive vocabulary and perfectly pronounced words. You repeat everything we say including a recent "oh shit," my reaction to a leaking sink. You are starting to put together small sentences and you always watch the mouth of the person speaking to you, as if you are learning how to move your mouth to say the same words. You can now fill in words to certain songs, your new favorite is Zippity Doo Dah which we sing when we are zipping anything, primarily your coat. You are also very interested in the song Home on the Range. I am not sure why I started singing that song one day, I barely know the words, yet ever since you always ask me to sing it by simply saying "home."
Ryder, you are improving everyday with your speaking. You are slowly adding more words to your vocabulary and though not all of them are clear we are seeing improvements. You definitely understand everything we say, and seem to be able to think through your needs and wants, you are just not quite as able to verbalize them. One of your most often used words is "stuck" which actually sounds like "duck." It is funny to me how many times you use the word "duck" and I often laugh that you don't say Chase too often but stuck you say. You also have a funny way of garbling your words. You want to say so much, but can't, and end up moving your tongue up and down against your lips. It is rather funny!
You are both teething. Ryder you must be getting molars. You are drooling again, and sticking everything in your mouth. You have very few teeth left to get, so hopefully this is the near end to the pain for you. Chase, you are in the process of getting another tooth. Your teeth seem to break through the skin slowly. This will officially be your 7th tooth. 20 months old, 7 teeth !!!
Classes are going well and you seem to be enjoying them. We all like to be kept busy because none of us are very good at being home all day. I suppose that is how I have trained you, for better or for worse.
Chase, it turns out you had an ear infection. For about two weeks you were getting random fevers. You would be fine all day, then get 101 right after your nap. We were at the doctor three times and nothing turned up. You were whining a lot and did not seem like yourself but we could not determine a problem. Finally, the infection came out in your ear, you are on antibiotics and you are much, much better. Unfortunately, you still whine a bit, which daddy and I are working on.
We also took you to get a haircut this month. Just prior to the cut you had long hair with ringlets. Your curls were a part of you and many people complemented us on them. But, they got too long so we took you for a trim, which turned out to be a scalping. High and short is the best description. It has a been a few weeks now and it is starting to grow back nicely. You really look adorable, but you also look much older.
Ryder you have been healthy with the exception of a 24 hour bout with a high fever. Your hair has not been cut and is on the longer side. It is straight and adorable and there is just no need to cut it yet.
We celebrated Valentines day this month, which allowed you to indulge in a number of chocolate treats and now "chocolate" is on Chase's list of most often said words. You also have been enjoying, probably all too often, lollipops, or as you call them lollipopop's. Which is adorable. You love to suck on them despite how sticky you become. I have to be careful where and when I allow you to have them.
We said goodbye to one of your fish recently. Well I said goodbye. I really did not mention anything to you about the fish dying and you have not seemed to notice or care. It was bubble who died, only it wasn't her anyway, because she had died a week earlier and I replaced her with a look-alike. When she didn't make it I decided to hedge my far, so goo.
We took you to the Camden Aquarium this month. You both absolutely loved it and walked around the place with excitement and interest. We had so much fun watching you as you got excited about the colorful fish, the size of a hippo, or the mass of a shark. The penguins were a huge hit. It was fun. We went to see Sesame Street Live tonight. You both did very well, impressively so, considering it was a 90 minute show (two 45 minute halves.) You both watched intently and seriously. You waved to all of your sesame friends but you did not opt to sing along...oh well, maybe next time. You seemed to like the characters until one, whose identity we have yet to uncover, got up right next to us (our seats were on the floor at the end) and Chase you got so scared you jumped into my arms with a whimper. It took some time for you to recover from that. All in all, however, it was a fun time.

Ryder, you still love the guitar and it is amazing to all that see how natural you are as you carry it around the house, stop to strum it, and then carry on. You always play it left handed and it seems to be a part of who you are, at least who you are at this point in your life. You love Elton John, mostly just the DVD that we have played for you and you are fascinated when you watch it. You now like to take the CD's out of the cabinet and call them all Elton. You both love Barney (Marney,as Ryder calls him) and we watch way too much of it a day. You also like to watch Elmo's World. Recently Ellie taught you the Chicken dance, which was quite hilarious to watch. Occasionally Chase, you will break out with the wing dance. This always makes me laugh.
Ryder you had an exciting event this month as you peed in the Elmo Potty for the first time. It was a one time deal, at least so far, but it was still pretty exciting for us.
Our favorite activity is still sitting by the window looking for trucks, neighbors, and mostly the school bus and students. We now point out school buses, tractors, trucks, and flags whenever we see them along our drive. You are most certainly boys.
We welcomed a new friend this month. Jackson Ryan Klaus was born on 2.24.07. You have not met him yet, but you will and when you do it will be fun to watch you grow up together.
Ryder you seem very attached to me these days. You do just fine when I am not with you but it is often a bit of a push to separate you from me when I need to leave. I can't say I am upset that you love your momma:) You want to share a lot more often these days, which is great. You will offer a lick of your lolli or a sip of your milk and you love to shove half eaten cookies in my mouth. Chase, you are much less interested in sharing but you do seem to have a general concern for your brother always checking to make sure he has what he needs. Ryder, you often call Chase "brother" which cracks daddy and I up. It is so cute.
You love spending time with your grandparents and your cousins and your friends. You are friendly, happy boys. You greet everyone we see in public with waves and smiles and often with "hi's" and you say goodbye to everything, including your toys and books. It is cute. You love to be tickled and we usually end our nights with a round of tickle torture. Hide and seek is still a blast, books are enjoyable on your terms, which means we rarely read a book cover to cover. You enjoy doing puzzles a bit more now and are getting much better at putting the pieces where they actually belong. You still eat the crayons more than color with them but we are working on it.

I am still awed by the boys that you are. At night, daddy and I will watch you while you sleep and we are amazed by your peacefulness, your beauty. We know, everyday, how truly lucky we are and we love you more than can be measured.

Much love to my boys,

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Potty Peeing!

On the 5 previous bath nights before tonight Ryder peed on his bedroom floor in the period of time between taking off his towel and putting a diaper on him. He does it while laughing, either because it feels good or because he knows he shouldn't be, probably both!! The first time it happened, we thought it was random. The second night, we thought it was weird it happened again. By night three we started to figure it out and nights 4 and 5 I guess we were just procrastinating. Tonight we decided to sit Ryder on the Elmo potty after he came out of the bath. We figured if was going to pee it may as well be in the proper place. Lo and behold he actually did it. Todd and I were amazed. When we bought the potty it was because Chase was showing an interest and telling us when he was wet. He used the word potty pretty often, so we went and bought a potty. Since we bought it however, Chase has no interest in it and Ryder would occasionally sit on it, but mostly he liked to pull off the parts. So, it was to our disbelief when we asked him to sit on it that he did excitedly, sat there for a minute or so and then peed. In typical Ryder fashion he then tried to stick his hands into the potty but we managed to prevent him from playing with his own siss. I am not expecting this one instance to become the training period for our boy, but I thought we should go on record with his first potty peeing.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Ryder wants to be a rock star!!

What little boy doesn't, right? But, really, he has a love affair with the guitar. He carries it everywhere and strums it all day. He even has proper form. And, it seems, he could be another Hendrix in the making, as he always plays the guitar lefty. I support my rock-n-rollin' what age can we begin guitar lessons?


Chase has this thing that he does. When he is thinking he stops and says "hmmmmm" as if he is really comtemplating where the puzzle piece belongs. And, I suppose he is. I think it is just adorable when he does it. But, I wonder where he learned this from? Is it just something that is within him, a little piece of what makes him Chase? Or, is it a learned behavior? This made me wonder if I do it too? Could it be that I just never noticed. In the last few days I seem to do it all the time. Is this a behavior I learned from him, is that even possible? I know I do it intentionally, constantly, just so he will mimic me. But, do I "hmmm" when I am thinking? Just leaves me saying "hmmmmm!"

Monday, March 3, 2008

Day at the Aquarium

I have mentioned how the boys love their fish. We knew they would be excited to see bigger, more colorful fish. We took them to the Camden Aquarium where they got to see all sorts of fun sea animals. The aquarium is a great place, we were there for hours, and the boys had a great time. They were first impressed by the size and colors of the fish we saw, and just how many there were. They wanted to stand on the ledge by the windows and it seemed they were trying to get in the tank, but the glass was just too thick. Then the penguins were a big hit. I am not sure why Chase has taken a liking to the word penguin, so seeing them live was a thrill for him. He specifically asked to see "more penguins" and as a result we went back for a second showing. As were we, they seemed to be amazed by the size of the Hippo and I think it may have changed their perspective a bit when we read "The Hippos go Beserk" last night before bed. We saw sharks and jellyfish and an octopus and though it is not a sea creature, Trinidad the Parrot- who squawks but does not talk- received hello's and goodbye's from both boys. And, it should come as no surprise, but the highlight of the day was turning the handles that made the turtles move, or sliding the doors that had facts behind them. Fish are neat and all, but nothing compares to hardware.
By the day's end, Ryder was ready for a nap and Chase was asking to see more fish, but we said bye bye to the fishies and headed home. Until next time.....

marveling at the fish

Who knew Jellyfish could be so neat?

"More Penguins"