Sep 27, 2010

Party Time

Weather is getting nicer here! More and more I'm wishing our neighborhood had sidewalks so we could safely take afternoon walks together as a family. By the time Dax gets home, everyone's getting home, and it's not so safe to be walking in the street. Anyway, the girls are enjoying their very favorite thing here- a snack!! They ask for them morning, noon, and night. I'm trying a different method this coming week to get them off of their snack cravings.

Since October's already on its way (hard to believe) and I needed to free up some bins in the garage, we sorted through some clothing. The girls mix and match to their heart's content.

Colin turned 14 weeks old. Yes, I'm keeping all these weeks in a folder on the computer. I figure I can put them in some kind of album when he reaches 52 weeks. As it stands, Hannah has a baby book and milestone calendar with every last detail filled in. Chloe has just a baby book with most of the milestones written in approximately when they may or may not have happened. Colin has a brand new baby book sitting in the closet. And it's empty. And I will have to have a very good memory in order to fill anything in. Hannah has 3 photo albums, Chloe has 1/2, and Colin has none. So this 52 week book might be a fun compensation for him. Neither of the girls have this. Now do males actually care that much about their baby photos, especially every week for the first year of their life? Probably not. It's the effort and a little less guilt that counts, right?

Now who is this fine fellow? Well, it's Ken Burns, the world renowned documentary filmaker. Have you seen PBS's The War, Jazz, Baseball, Civil War, National Parks: America's Best Idea, and a bunch more? These films are 12-20 hours long and all encompassing in every way. He focuses on major events in American history and every one I've seen is memorable...and so is he! Dax and I got to hear him speak last night in Arlington. The only celebrity I've ever seen. He really was wonderful and very inspiring. I had a great time.

And who is this lovely lady? Krys Boyd hosts my very favorite radio show in Dallas called Think.
The topics on her show are always so interesting and she's the very best at interviewing her guests. They always acted pleasantly surprised when she asks them questions because they are never typical and always thoughtful- thus the title of the show! She interviewed Ken Burns that night so she's the second 'celebrity' I've ever seen. Well, she walked out on stage first so it's the other way around.

These three rule the roost. They wear us down, cause us to pull out our hair, and send us running for the hills. But they also cause us to laugh, love, and know what true happiness is all about.

Thanksgiving Feast! Our friend Jessica decided she wanted Thanksgiving early this year. And since Jessica is just that type of person, she made it happen. Several families got together and offered up their family dishes. We brought herb stuffing.

Waiting for the good eats.

Tyler entertains the little ones. I looked over once and Hannah was riding on his back. I looked over a second time and she was swinging through the air by her feet!

Belt buckles are loosened. The food was delicious!

Where's dessert?

Gary is a musician when he's not at his day job. He has a great voice and knows lots of tunes so he provided some entertainment. Colin was completely quiet the entire time.

Dance party!

It's a party shift! The next day, we went to Brenna's birthday party. It seems like just yesterday when I held her for the first time. She was about Colin's age. Now she's 4. She had a princess birthday in every way, and almost every present was her favorite color: pink. This makes me laugh because when she was a baby, her mother was very opposed to pink since it was so typical for girls. Now she's just as excited as Brenna at every pink, sparkly gift.

The "Is this my new bike?" face.

Hopscotch rug.

Chloe has a turn.

Caaaaaake! That's what's going through Chloe's head. That girl cannot get enough desserts. I think she stores them in those cheeks : )

Sep 26, 2010

Here are the kids jamming at our faux Thanksgiving feast. Gary took a break from his regular tunes and played Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star for the kids. I love Chloe in that one. She's so happy she knows the song. The 3rd one is little Colin and his happy laugh. That's me spitting at him.

Sep 18, 2010

This and That

As Dora would say, "Backpack, backpack!"

Hannah showing off her first solo somersaults.

These two are going to be double trouble I believe. You can tell by their faces and their filthy shirts. : )

"Who me?"

Always nice to get a hug- even a suffocating one.

Rare picture of me, but not rare form. Obviously I haven't been focusing on looking like much lately. I've got a wardrobe of casual clothes that only sort of fit...and time to do my hair? Not happening. Those out there wondering what I want for Christmas? Gift cards to get some clothes!

14 Weeks He's definitely starting to notice his own feet now, notice when we give him a toy, and notice when someone is nearby that he likes. He's also going to have me smiling all the time. If I feel down or stressed or something serious is going on...I look down and there is Colin grinning. Well, not in these pictures, but it's true. : )

Chloe finally grew her lion's mane to the point of no return. Time for her first haircut. This was the only split second she sat without being upset. She was offered the lollipop and that helped for as long as it took for me to snap a photo. She did not like the fire truck, scissors, movie, etc. I had to hold her in another chair and the hairdresser could only get a bit trimmed! Pretty much enough to save in a baby book. At least the back is even now. And she showed me a way to keep her bangs back that didn't result in a big floppy-do thing on top.

Hannah sat like a pro.

They got glittery stars on their cheeks. I guess Colin was upset he had no need for a haircut so he screamed the entire time. The hairdresser was very patient and even rocked him for me a couple of times. Thankfully we were the only patrons in there.

Hanging out with a bear and some wipes.

Friday we were invited to the park for some fun. Several moms/kids from church were there as well as some extended moms/kids. I was very happy to meet two ladies who quilt! I've been getting in some quilting lately (will have some results to post soon) but I've yet to meet anyone who shares the love and is willing to help out a beginner like me. It turns out one of the women is actually the secretary for the local quilt guild. Maybe this will give me a chance to make some friends in the quilting world. It's definitely a world. Oh- the picture. The girls hang out with their friend, Claire, who is only a few days younger than Hannah.

Lunch time! How many PB&J sandwiches can you count in this picture?

We've not come cross many book activity ideas lately, but I think this one counts. I think about 80% of children's books feature farm animals. Hannah got this set for Christmas last year but has been really interested in them lately. Usually she wants me to carry on lots of silly dialogue between Mitzi the horse and a miniature turkey. I was a little bored with that this day so we had them all do Ring Around the Rosie.

The Animal Promenade

And they all fall down! Or are slammed to the ground by a 3 year old.

Let's try some other scenarios. Dictator Cow looks over his subjects.

Make-shift animal barn.

Remember this? One of my favorite childhood movies. Land Before Time. I put this on the best thing ever invented, the Netflix Instant Queue and Hannah watched it today. It's been a long time, so I wasn't sure if the T-Rex scene would scare her. Scratch that/ T-Rex scenes. I forgot how much of this movie is baby dinosaurs screaming, falling, and running for their lives! There are the sweet and cute moments, though, and Hannah seemed to like the whole thing- mildly. As soon as they reached the Great Valley, before they even had the chance to reunite with their families (spoiler!!- haha) Hannah was telling me it was over and I should turn it off.

In other news I've only got one writing assignment left in my writing course- started last October! I finished some illustrations for a children's book. See post below. And I'm ready for some free time. I intend to spend it reading, quilting, and catching up on Mad Men.

Pascha Art

I've completed the illustrations for the 2nd book of a friend from church, both for children.
Her first was about Lent- I believe I posted pictures forever ago. This one is about Pascha. The monastery that's publishing it hopes to have it out by Lent in the spring! I thought I would post a few since I'm very excited about finishing this project.

Pascha is the Orthodox term for Easter. It literally means Passover. The book begins with this picture of the original Passover.

Pharoah looking out over his people.

Palm Sunday

Betrayal of Jesus by Judas. These stories are covered throughout the days of Holy Week.

Holy Communion

The purple robed Jesus with crown of thorns. A tamer version for the kids.

The procession around the church at Pascha. The priest has changed into white.
Throughout Lent, the vestments are purple.

Sep 9, 2010

September Already?

Time is certainly flying. Little Colin turned 3 months old today! We sang Happy Birthday for him at the dinner table.

This is Hannah's trick. She's allowed to hold him for 3.3 seconds. But she's pretty good at it!
He looks so big in this picture, but he's still tiny to me.

What? You never know what you're going to find these girls doing if you leave them for just a second. Chloe decided to try the potty. Not much resulted from it if you know what I mean, but at least she was interested. It feels a little daunting to me to think about starting this now. May days with them can be overwhelming sometimes. If she shows interest again, I'll probably get out her special potty and let her really try. She's still not even 2 yet, so who knows.

Smiling boy! And drooling boy! All his shirts are immediately soaked.

Timber!!! Still his favorite trick.

He also likes to watch his feet, kick around, and is more aware of his surroundings.

Are they cleaning up or making more of a mess? I think you know the answer.

They headed outside to be helpful there instead. : )

The girls totally rejected their lunch today. What's so wrong with ravioli and sliced apples? You would have thought I put a plate of dirt in front of them. It turns out that would have made their day. I caught Chloe actually feeding herself a spoonful of dirt twice! Mmmm. Grainy.

The girls are so fun to watch. They get along like sisters for sure- it's a love/total annoyance relationship. Tonight they were trying to kiss each other good night and bumped noses. Hannah's really hurt so she burst into tears. Chloe came over and kissed her. Then she retrieved Hannah's water from the living room and gave it to her. So sweet! I always catch them doing nice things for each other like that. They also surprise me. The last couple of mornings I've gone into their room after they've been playing for about an hour (after waking up and before someone opens their door). Chloe has been perched up on the changing table each time. She has trouble getting onto the couch! Anyway, she can get up but she can't get down. I guess she's fine with sitting up there while Hannah plays down below. She's never unhappy when I go in there. Instead, she tries to get first dibs on what we should have for breakfast. Today she shouted, "Waff-waff?" (waffles)

Chloe has also found her play soul-mate. A tube of chapstick. Neither girl cared about pacifiers, blankies, stuffed animals, etc. They've never attached to an object. At Nana's house Chloe loves to play with the "lips" which are basically tubes of lip balm, gloss, etc. I've never really given her anything like that, but suddenly today she asked for lips with a big grin on her face. I remembered I actually had assorted colored chapsticks I had stored away. I gave her one and her day was made. Hannah destroyed three of them while Chloe held onto hers for 3 hours before her nap and from after nap to bedtime. She opened and closed it. Smiled at it. Put it on her lips and nose. I even saw her rocking the tiny top like a baby! I took it from her so she could have a bath and promised to give it back afterwards. Of course she came running for it when as soon as she was dry. She took it and about 10 minutes later returned to me. "Mama?" "Yes?" I said. "Thanks." Then she ran off again! I love it. The two have been separated for the night, but I assume the relationship will continue tomorrow.

In Hannah news, she's developing into her Hannah personality more and more everyday. She's extremely practical, loves to be in control, and loves to be very silly at the same time. She also loves details. We're having a couple over for dinner tomorrow night and she informed Dax that we did not have enough chairs. She tells me when I missed a spot while wiping the table. I'm told when I have "forgotten Colin" when we are heading out the door, without even getting the chance to pick up his carseat! I'm also asked to watch while she does the same goofy jump 32 times in a row : ) I was reading her a story the other day about a boy who rode his bike into his mother's flower pots and toppled them. "Oh no. What should he do?" I asked. I expected her to say clean it up, since that is practical and helpful, but she surprised me yet again. "Nothing," she said. "Why not?" "Because he's not real. He's just a picture." Well, she's right. She's always right.
: )