Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Confessions

Or how I learned to stop worrying and admit to getting old.


I have absolutely no idea how to text (nor am I totally won over to its value).

I can't stay up all night.

I like to keep my hair short.

The music that kids listen to these days...I don't get it.

I refer to teenagers as 'kids.'

I'm starting to think I really need make-up.

I'm tired. (Or maybe just pregnant...whichever...)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Things Ben said on the drive home from Grammy and Grandpa's tonight that made me laugh

(Defining 'limo' for Josh) "A limo is a really long...well, not really long, but kind of long car that's really fancy and it's probably really expensive because it's so fancy."

(Using a funny cowboy accent to be the voice of his new toy alligator) "I reckon this town needs a superhero. Maybe I could be that hero. I wonder if I have x-ray vision? I do!"

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Etsy goodness

Isn't Etsy great? I love the alway-changing featured items on the front page. Yesterday babai alainn was on there and I loved all the knitted hats!



And a little while back I saw this cool pendant from Home Studio, browsed the shop a bit and found the CTR one too. Well, whaddaya know?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A reward for a laundry day well done

As I was folding the last load of the day, Josh and Lydia came to keep me company. I heard Josh's conspiratorial voice behind me say, "Mom, where did we go?" I turned toward the dirty-laundry-sorter thing to see this:

(And by the way, that big old rip is the result of Lydia's new love affair with climbing in the sorter on top of the dirty laundry all the time. It currently stretches all the way from one end to the other. Anyway, on with the cuteness...)

I was so charmed by seeing their cute squirming little backs and their muffled giggling that I indulged in the fake search. ("Hmm, are you behind the door? Nooo. Are you on the ceiling? Nooo...") They finally revealed their hiding spot with a triumphant, "Here we are!"

I indulged them by not being able to find them for a few more times, and they indulged me by recreating it for the camera.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hey Harry

I just finished up this book. I know I'm late to the party on this whole series. I never got involved when they first came around, I was in college and didn't have a lot of time for recreational reading. When I finally did have the time, the series was already up to about the fifth sequel and it just didn't seem like it was worth the effort to catch up.
That changed, however, several months back when Emma suddenly professed herself to be an avid Harry Potter fan and thought all things HP-related were just the best (having been highly swayed by a few older cousins, I believe). So I figured if she was going to love Harry Potter she ought to actually read the books. And that was a good enough reason for me to join in as well. I knew the series generally got scarier/more intense/etc as the books went on, so I wanted to stay one book ahead of her to know what was coming. She's about half way through #3. She read voraciously for awhile, but now seems to have lost steam. She's taking a break (right when there's dementors running around all over the place!) and going through a few shorter books (Goosebumps) now. And after finishing #4 myself, I'm in no hurry for her to catch up to me. I think I may even impose an age limit on book 4, or at least purposefully steer her in another direction for a year or two. Is it just me or was #4 quite the leap from #3 in terms of intensity of content? There were quite a few parts that were downright disturbing. The forbidden curses, the torture, the death, the whole rebirth scene, even the riotous behavior after the World Cup...it all just seemed a little much for an 8 year old.
Come on Emma, I've got a nice girl named "Anne" I'd like you to meet....

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Can you ever really get enough of the beach?

Not us.
Last week we threw off the shackles of work and school and chores and spent some time being lazy and getting sandy at our favorite beach, Isle of Palms. This was a trip that we planned over a year ago with our good friends from the ward, the Christians.
We did all the normal beachy stuff. Right where we were there was the best sandbar/tidepool action going on. The tide pool was just right for the littles ones to play around in without gettting knocked down by waves. It was also good for jumping into. The sandbar was perfect for skimboarding. Scott found a shovel at our beach house to dig the usual pits.

We found a few good parks in the evenings.
We hung out on an aircraft carrier and submarine.

We enjoyed playing in the fountains and eating Italian ices at Battery Park in Charleston.
Did I mention that Lydia turned TWO while we were there?

video

Friday, September 12, 2008

Ooo ooo, haaa haaa!

Did you hear something? Is there a primate in my kitchen?

+ = Trouble


Lydia and I share a love of this wonderful entire column of kitchen drawers. I love them because kitchens never have enough drawers and I think every house ought to have a column or two. I find them very handy and very useful. Lydia finds them useful too. But not for storage and efficiency, oh no.
I suppose it's my own fault. Monkey Girl's new favorite climbing spot came about because I usually sit the kids on the counter when they need a bandaid (which, as I've mentioned, is often). It's a good place to bleed, get cleaned up and get bandaged. Lydia is wise to this loophole in the otherwise strict stay-off-the-counters mandate. Now several times a day she creases her brow and nods her head persuasively while explaining, "I need a bandaid on my ouchie. I bleeeeeeding." She keeps up her nods (reassuring me that it's necessary and no big deal and willing me to just let it go) while maintaining eye contact and making her way over to her drawer-ladder. Other times I simply find her counter-top waiting, ready with her false excuses for being up there.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Scott vs. The Fly

Poor creature never had a chance.
video
Fly-swatters are for sissies. This trick is a big crowd-pleaser with the kids. What could be cooler than a dad who kills flies with his superior speed, strength and mercilessness? Nothing.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

The boy knows what he wants


Josh cracked me up at the dentist the other day. Our dentist has a little machine in the waiting area like those found by the front door of many stores and restaurants. You put in a quarter, turn the crank and out comes a prize of the plastic toy or sticker variety. When a child is done with their appointment, they get a special token to put in the machine and pick their prize (there were 8-10 choices) for doing a great job.
So. Josh gets his token and with his first glance knows exactly what he wants. "Ooo, a thing for catching bugs in!!" The untrained eye might have thought he was pointing to a section full of little rings housed in those plastic bubble containers. But in (Josh's) reality, he was pointing to a section full of little plastic bubble containers for catching bugs in. Which happened to have some meaningless baubles inside them at the moment.
I didn't want him to be disappointed with his choice. I spent a minute highlighting the value and neatness of all of the other options. Bouncy ball? Spinning top? No. None of those. Once he spotted that bug catcher, he could see no other option. He was blind to all but his true desire.
I needn't have worried. Josh has been nothing but pleased with his prize. That afternoon he spent awhile wandering all through the house muttering "Where is that fly?" with his catcher open and ready for its first tenant. He found a small spider and made a few attempts to catch it but was a little too freaked out by its crawling to keep his fingers close to it for long (and opted instead to fetch a tissue for squashing it). I'm glad to have a son who has no problems defying convention and creating his own fun.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Line Upon Line Cards




My friend Alyssa recently posted about these awesomely hilarious cards. I liked them so much I wanted to talk about them too. They have that great inside-joke humor (for my LDS friends, anyway) that is so precious. And look at the design! Sharp.
Head on over to Line Upon Line cards and be sure to scroll all the way down and read them all, it's worth it. Bonus: they're on board with the Nie Nie fund.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Virginia Creeper


For Labor Day, Scott took the three big kids to ride bikes on the Virginia Creeper Trail. I am so proud and impressed with them all, they rode 17 miles. The VCT is gorgeous (I've never been there, but I've seen photos). It's green and lush and country, with tons of bridges. It's very family friendly with ice cream shops and play areas and creeks to stop and explore along the way. Scott rode the entire trail both ways (almost 70 miles) with his dad and brother, Conan, last year. Ever since then we've been wanting to take the kids (the 17 miles they rode was mostly downhill, so they really didn't get tired until the very end).
Given the upcoming start of soccer season which will usurp all of our Saturdays and their recent obsession with bike-riding, yesterday seemed like the perfect time to go. (I really wanted to go too, and waffled about it all last week, doing a couple of five mile biking trials at the gym, but finally decided my pregnant body would not handle sitting on a bike for that long very well. The good news is we're definitely going to make this a tradition, so I'll get in on the action next year.) They brought along Emma and Ben's bikes from home, and Scott rented a tandem bike there that Josh could ride on the back of with him. At first Josh was scared of riding on it (as seen on his face here when they had practiced going around the parking lot a bit before starting the trail), but soon grew accustomed and was all smiles.
Along the trail the kids kept wanting to stop and take photos. Scott said they probably stopped every mile or so for the first half. Here's some of the scenery they enjoyed:

They stopped three different times to get ice cream along the trail but the shops were all closed. (Drat! They got frosties on the way home to make up for it.) They also stopped to play awhile on a playground (Emma must be Monkey Girl Sr.).They took another little break to walk along the Appalachian trail.When I asked them what the best part was, all three had the same answer: climbing on the big rock.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Baby Girl Name Overhaul

Scott and I went to the temple Saturday (which was great, thanks for keeping the kids, Stoners!). We used the long drive time to really get serious talking about baby names. As you can see, we really cut it down and threw in a couple of new contenders. I don't know what it is about the letter A...it just begins most of the prettiest names I guess.

Abigail: Because it's pretty and old fashioned. Also, we like Abby as a nickname. It's Biblical, which is nice, and we particularly like the role she plays in the story of forgiveness/intercession in 1 Samuel 25.

Afton: It all started in Scotland in 1791 when Robert Burns wrote the love poem Afton Water, where he entreats the River Afton and various sounds of nature around it to keep their peace because his sweetheart is sleeping by the banks. 209 years later one of our favorite bands, Nickel Creek, made it into a beautiful song. It's always been Scott's favorite by NC. Even though it was written as a love song/poem, he has always related it to our Emma and his feelings of paternal love and protection for her. (Seriously, listen to the words and imagine a father singing that to his daughter, it makes me all weepy every time.) In the poem, the girl's name is Mary and the river is Afton, but we just like Afton better.

Analyn: This was a suggestion from Jenica that we shelved initially, but it grew on us. And Lyn is Scott's middle name, so that's a bonus.

Elizabeth: Pretty and old fashioned. We both just like it, but still fear the nicknames. Can we possibly extend our parental control to all the people who ever meet her throughout her life and insist they only call her by her full name??