Jul 29, 2009

Sage Pretends

My 2nd book is finished and has been delivered. I have several other stories in mind, but I think this will be it for awhile as I have so many other projects to work on- like painting the bathrooms. : ) I'm posting the entire thing here because I won't be able to print everyone copies this time. I hope you enjoy it and thank you everyone who helped me with all the drafts!

SHOOM! Sage pushed the blue rocket through the air toward the grapefruit moon she held in her hand. KSSSSHHH! The little rocket landed gently on the smooth surface. Sage and her brother, Isaia, had added star stickers to the rocket, and just now, Sage had added a tiny flower sticker on its nose for a special touch. She thought she would take the toy spaceman out of the hatch so he could explore the moon, when she heard her mother call, “Sage, it’s time to go!” Sage got dressed and went to her mother.

Just as she was having fun, it was time to stop!

FLIP, FLIP, FLOP! At the shoe store, Sage cheered up when she tried on a pair of glittery, purple sandals. She liked the way they sparkled in the mirror when she moved her feet. TIP, TIP, TAP! Sage clicked across the hard floor in a pair of shiny, black dress shoes. As her mother took the sandals and dress shoes to the cashier, Sage spotted a pair of tall, blue heels. She thought she would like to play dress-up! Just as she slipped her feet into the pointy shoes, she heard her mother say, “Sage, it’s time to go.” Sage put on her own shoes and followed her mother.

Just as she was having fun, it was time to stop!

THWOP, THUMP, BOOM! On the way home, Sage and her mother stopped to hear her daddy’s band practice their music. Drummer John helped Sage hit a small drum with a wooden stick. He also showed her a large gold cymbal shaped like a dish. TSSHHH! The cymbal rang after Sage tapped it with the stick. She thought she would beat the biggest drum next. It looked as big as a kitchen table! “Sage, it’s time to go,” said her daddy. Sage gave Drummer John his stick and climbed into the car.

Just as she was having fun, it was time to stop!

PLOP, PLOP, POOF! Sage played in her bath after dinner. She squeezed her washcloth and watched the water drip onto the bubbles in the tub. She gathered bubbles onto her chin and made a fish face at her toy turtle.
PIP, PIP, PLIP! Sage thought she might dip her face into the water and swim like a mermaid, when her daddy said, “Sage, it’s time for bed.” Sage climbed out of the tub and wrapped herself in a towel.

Just as she was having fun, it was time to stop!

Sage was grumpy after a day of having her fun interrupted. She did not want to go to sleep. She wanted to play. Her mother tucked her into bed. “Sage, I’m sorry you had to stop playing so many times today, but don’t worry. You can play again in the morning.” She kissed Sage’s head and told her, “Good night.”

Morning felt very far away to Sage and she could not go to sleep. She thought about the rocket with the flower sticker on its nose. If she could play with the rocket right now, she would take out the spaceman and get into the rocket herself!

CLICK! She would fasten the seatbelt. She would fly up to the stars and wave to Isaia in the rocket flying nearby. His rocket would be painted green with white stripes. They would race to the moon together!


Next, Sage thought about the tall, blue heels. If she could wear those shoes right now, she would wobble over to the scarves at the store and choose the brightest orange scarf to swoop around her neck. She would try on a floppy, purple hat and green sunglasses too. She would ask her daddy to take a picture of her all dressed up, and she would hang the picture on the refrigerator.



Then Sage thought about Drummer John’s drums and cymbals. She would hit the tiny drums with her finger tips. TIP, TIP! She would hit the biggest drums with her feet. DONK, DONK! She would use the wooden stick to hit cymbals and all sorts of other instruments hanging high and low all around her. CLING, TING, TWICK, TWANG! BING, BONG, CLICK, CLANG!

Finally, Sage remembered she had wanted to be like a mermaid in the bathtub. She would hold her breath and dip her head of curly hair under the water. She would swim past a group of colorful fish. BLUB, BLUB, GLUB! She would talk to a friendly seahorse. SWISH, SWISH, SWOOSH! She would use her pink mermaid tail to dance with a smiling dolphin beneath the waves of the sea!


“Sage, it’s time to wake up.” Sage opened her eyes in surprise. She remembered flying in the rocket, trying on fancy clothes, playing drums, and dancing with a dolphin...but she did not remember going to sleep!

Later that day, Sage and her family went to the zoo. Sage roared with the lions and hopped with the kangaroos. She hissed with the snakes, waved her arms with the monkeys, and squawked with the birds. When Sage reached the elephants, she thought she would stretch her arm as far as she could and touch the very tip of the baby elephant’s trunk. “Sage, it’s time to go!,” called her family.

Sage smiled. She was not upset she had to stop playing. She knew just what to do. She would pretend!

HISSSS! ROAR! SQUAWK!


Jul 26, 2009

Cheese!

Here is our Thursday play group and I'm so sad we only have a couple more left before Megan goes back to teaching in the fall. L to R- Brenna (Megan's niece) Hannah, Chloe, Finley, and Phoebe. There are those lady bug dresses I told you about!

Hannah got her first official haircut on Friday! She's gone to a place like this before but it was just a quick bang trim and she was too young to get what was going on. I showed her some pictures before we left of kids getting their haircut and she was really excited.


All cleaned up- smooth hair rather than messy hair!

Haha! She kept putting her sucker in front of her face for the picture so I said "Put it up near your ear," and she took me literally of course. She's so proud of the haircut and will bring it up every little while and tell me how they used a hair dryer too.

Friday night I went to Jessica's house for a "crop." That's scrapbook speak for scrapbooking. I'm working on a project for Phoebe's birthday so if you see this Megan, don't zoom in! It was a small crowd of 3 and the other 2 do amazing things and have every tool in the world. I did the best I could and had a nice time. I really could get addicted to something like this and can think of a million books I want to make but I think I'll stick with having a family Christmas scrapbook.

Farewell! Oh, and if you haven't seen our little 30 second videos, here are the links.
Stokes Family Summer: http://animoto.com/play/lBhnMcnJNyFNH1SUHnS0QQ
Hannah Ballerina: http://animoto.com/play/gDKpstDqPJ0ZIkj24GyhLg?autostart=true

Jul 20, 2009

End of July

Chloe all ready for church and looking mischievous. Nana made them matching lady bug dresses for this past Sunday but we didn't get a picture. I'll try to get one this week.

I'm crawling!!! Chloe is mobile now and very happy about it. She can actually get the toys she sees although she'll have to improve her speed with her big sister jumping the gun all the time. Chloe has even stood on her own for a few seconds too! She can copy us saying Dada and Gaga and her newest one is Uh-oh. If we say it, she says it back but with a kind of gremlin throaty like voice for some reason. : )


Hannah's latest creation. It looks a bit like Edward Scissorhands or something Tim Burtonish.

Game night!! Dax, myself, Megan and her husband Scott sent the kids off to spend the night with grandmothers and we had the best time playing Risk and eating pizza. Very relaxing.

Scott and I duke it out for final supremacy. I am the yellow on the board so you can see my intimidation efforts were all for nought.

Having been dominated, Dax and Megan move onto the more harmless game of Scrabble. : )
The next night Megan, Heather, and I went to the midnight Harry Potter premiere! We had a great time and even sat in the exact theater, almost the exact seats as we have before.

Chloe is not pleased with the baked potato.

This is what happens when I bring the TV out! haha...

...and this is why I'm not a professional photographer. What a great picture other than the long plant stems sticking out of Dax's head. It kind of looks like Titan's crown from the Little Mermaid which I haven't seen in years so I may be wrong.

Aunt Melody, Hannah has a Christmas present request.

On Saturday we went to Hannah's friend Sage's 3rd birthday party. Her mom built a puppet castle and she and her husband put on a little show! Soon, I'll have my next children's book finished and I'll post some pictures. It's for Sage and will have to be a little late for her birthday.

The little guests. The birthday girl is the one pretending to eat plastic corn.


I've finished the run of The King and I and I get to be at home now. It was an hour drive to the show, a 3 hour performance plus 1/2 hour call time, then an hour back so it took quite a chunk of time out of every day! However, I was thankful for the work and it was a fun experience. For those who don't know, the story is about an English women who comes to Siam to teach the King's children about Western culture and finds herself teaching and bonding with the king himself. It's a nice story and had some good comedic parts too.As soon a I finished, Dax is off conducting his musical, The Pajama Game, a story about union workers, strikes, and finding love. Looking at the poster alone, though, one can wonder along with us why a group of high schoolers is putting this show on. Hmmm.

A pool! When I was younger I used to wander the house and the yard with my neighbor friend thinking up ways to build a pool in the summer heat. My cousin had a pool but it wasn't in my backyard! Since our yard now is not level in most spots and an in-ground pool is far from possible also, my dad got me this for my birthday. It seats two adults at either end, has cup holders and plenty of room for the whole family. I'm really excited about filling it up but it might rain all this week.

Bye for now!!

Jul 11, 2009

4th of July Weekend

Happy 4th of July from the Stokes Family!

Tickling gets a smile but also an awkward pose. On July 4th we tried out our local "festival." It was not so good last year and not so good this year either so I don't think we'll go back. We'll head a few minutes down the road to bigger and more organized events next year I think.
; )
After staying for a few minutes we opted for McDonald's ice cream cones instead. We went to a church service and then met some other church folks for a pizza buffet before the fireworks.

I explained to Hannah that the fireworks would be very loud, very colorful, and very big. She's too young to remember last year so she really couldn't picture what I was talking about. Here we are walking down to the grassy area down the street from church. They shoot the fireworks from the UNT football stadium.

All gathered together waiting for the show.

Hannah practices her marching.

The fireworks started and Chloe loved them. She held out her hands and twitched and blinked at each explosion but hardly ever looked away. Raina is laughing at her. : )

Hannah agreed that they were loud like I promised so Dax held her ears the whole time. We think she thought it was pretty neat, but for the big finale Dax looked down and saw that she was asleep! Since that night, she talks about the fireworks pretty much all day. "Fireworks weewy weewy weewy loud! Fireworks weewy POP!" Everything reminds her of those fireworks. Lately on her magnadoodle she has been instructing me to draw helicopters, Barney with a lawnmower, Barney with a vaccuum, and now Barney with fireworks.

Something else funny- I was going over some little question and answer cards with her when we came upon a picture of a button up shirt. She looked at it and said "work." I just laughed. The next day I put her in her only button down shirt and she said, "Hannah going work." I asked her where and she said, "The library." I guess she's following in Daddy's footsteps? I figured she thinks a button down shirt is what someone wears to work because that's pretty much what Dax wears to work amost every day. It's funny the things they notice.

Hannah's patron saint is Elizabeth the New Martyr. That saint's day of commemoration is July 5 and therefore is Hannah's "name day." Nana got her the Sound of Music, Hannah's favorite thing to watch! A lady at church gave her this doll whom Hannah promptly named "Susan" although I swear she's never even heard that name. The doll came with all sorts of beautiful hand-made dresses and is a really nice doll herself. Dax tells me that today Susan took a nap on the cooler during dinner time. Maybe we'll have to get a doll crade for poor Susan. Dax and I got Hannah this tiny little tea set. She loves tea sets at other kids' houses so now she has her own. I'm really wanting to put a bit of lemonade in there and make teensy sandwiches for fun but knowing Hannah, she won't be able to play with the tea set without those things from then on. Who would, I guess? Here she is wearing a pretty shirt from Greece Nana got her. Her hair is alo done up Heidi style. She's all ready for the big cookout.

Aren't they sweet? Two little girls having a tea party.

We worked really hard on getting the back yard ready for the cookout. My mom got me plants (and a couple of clothing items : ) for my birthday and so far I'm actually keeping them alive back there and it's been over a week. That's saying a lot in this Texas sun.

The elephant ear bulbs I planted are huge now.

Besides planting flowers, I spent the most time setting up this little pool/play area for the kids at the cookout....and then after all of this...it rained! People hung out on the deck but noone even went in the yard because it was too muddy and wet.

Heather, the Norine's and Murphy play the game of LIFE!

Church folks chatter on the couch.

The Longs and Dykes hang out.

Here come the Bentons! There were lots of other people too but I spent most of the time corralling children. We had a nice time. Anna made a delicious birthday cake I wish I had taken a picture of. I'm 30 now!!! Dax gave me two books I've been wanting and a night at the movies with a friend. Anna brought me a plant, some towels for the bathroom and a handmade shower curtain and valance along with some paint I picked out for the master bath. I can't wait until I have time to paint and put it all together. My dad ordered a family sized inflatable pool for us and several other people gave me nice gifts as well. Thank you everyone for a wonderful birthday!!

After the crowds subsided, Hannah tries out the foosball table the next day. She won't go into the house until it's "closed," which means pushing in all the handles on one side and then pushing them all again from the other side. Thankfully she doesn't look at the original side to see them all sticking out again or we'd be there all day!

We enjoy some time outide in a little play tent Heather gave us.

Hannah is into "reading material" during potty time. She's looking at Kohl's selection of vacuums of course. It's extremely tiring to take a child to the potty every hour with so many other things to take care of throughout the day. She almost never initiates it herself so we are still working on that. It would make things easier.

We got to see Nana more this week and were very happy about that. Today she took us to the pool at Texas Woman's University where she's working on her Masters. I didn't realize it was an outdoor pool so Nana had to save us by lending us hats and sunscreen. Chloe is trying on her straw hat.


See you again soon!