Wednesday, December 31, 2008

On the Needles: Bramble Scarf

I'm currently working on this bramble scarf. I'm using a merino blend in a color called "Spice House." The camera doesn't do the color justice.

I took a close-up of the bramble, but it looked like ground beef! I'll try again later.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

YogaToes - Who Knows?

Confession: I secretly want a pair of YogaToes.

Well, not so secret now. I showed Paul a picture of them, and he made fun of me in the requisite manner. (That kinda makes me want them more!)

I went to the company's website, These magical toe stretchers cost a whopping $50! I'm not sure I want to spend that kind of money, but if they eliminate toe cramps and foot pain, it may be worth it. I'm wondering how to secretly smuggle them into the house now that I've voiced my wants to Paul!

After scouring the internets, I want them even more! Everyone had glowing reviews and said they eliminated a host of worries, including leg bruises. If you know me, you know that I very rarely wear shorts or skirts because I look like someone beat me with a sock full of pennies.

Let me tell you - I'm no stranger to gimmicks. I own a PedEgg and love it. I bought a Finishing Touch Hair Remover and have not had much luck keeping my Brooke Shieldses under control.

I'm totally of the I'll-try-just-about-anything mentality. Heck, I've found relief from a sinus infection thanks to my netti pot, I've stopped a hacking cough in its tracks with my pal Umcka. All those "ask-your-doctor" commercials are total target marketing. (I'm totally their target!) I've asked my doctor for Nasacort, Nasonex, Patanol, Zocor, Seasonale and a slew of other designer prescriptions.

Just this past week, my MIL and I were watching "The View" (which is something I very rarely - very rarely - watch) and we saw a fantastic hair styling product, the InStyler. We both looked at each other with that look that women recognize - you know, the one that makes men think "Oh crap! What's she buying now?" I grabbed the laptop, went to their website and scored us each one on a two-fer offer!

Now think about it: If everyone out there was a Negative Nelly and refused to try something because someone else said it was good, where would we be?

I can tell you this: If we were all Nellies, we'd never eat lobster or oysters (honestly - look at those things!), we'd never pour premeasured packets of salt into a little tea pot to rinse out our noses and we'd never have relaxed feet and straight toes!

I'm Not Good at These Things

My friend's mother passed away on Christmas Eve. You may recall me mentioning my friend Stace the other day. Her mother suffered from emphysema and COPD.

I told Paul I want to go to the funeral. I never met Lainie, Stace's mom, but I know that this is not an easy time to go through for anyone and to see familiar faces can bring some peace.

The last funeral I attended was back in 2005. My step-grandfather passed away. Mitchell was about 8 months old. The two of us flew to Houston for a quick trip so we could be at the funeral.

I'm never good at visitations and funerals. I never know what to say, where to stand or what to do with my hands. It's a little easier when you're surrounded by family; you know where to stand and with whom to sit.

Please say a prayer of peace for Stace and her family. She said that Christmas Eve was her mother's favorite day - and that she passed away on Christmas Eve. Stace included this little prayer in her email. I'm going to hang it in my medicine cabinet so I see it everyday. It really says it all:

Prayer for Protection
The light of God surrounds you,
The love of God enfolds you,
The power of God watches over you,
Wherever you are, God is.
And all is well (as her Mom would say)

Facebook: The Bounty Hunter

So I joined this little site called Facebook a while back. It was fun to find old friends and people I sort of knew a long time ago.

Then, it became like an addiction! All of a sudden, I'm reconnecting with people I've not heard from in years (decades!), and I'm constantly checking to see if someone commented on my status or has invited me to be their friend.

And, it's really strange, too. There's people you swore you'd never see again, and there they are on your computer everyday. There's people you've wondered about for a while, and there they are with their families in their Christmas jammies or lamenting about pink eye.

Then, there's the people you had hoped you wouldn't see again. And yet, you feel compelled to accept their friend request. (Do they find out if you say "No?")

It's amazing to have a tool out there to find old friends - and foes - and to learn that we're all past high school now and all that junk back then really doesn't matter in our real worlds.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Happy Birthday Mitchell (Sorry it's Late!)

Mitchell turned 4 last week, and I totally forgot to post about it! Sorry, sweet boy!

Mitchell was so tiny when he was born (5 lbs., 12 ozs.). Here he is holding Paul's finger just seconds after he was born.
Our first family Christmas photo. He was one week old. I bought this sweater a few days he was born, just in case he came early. I left the tags on, since he wasn't due for four more weeks. It was huge on him! Glad I had it, though!!!

This photo shows just how tiny he was when he should have been plumping up. We were pretty worried.

This has always made me laugh! Tigger loved Mitchell, and Mitchell still loves Tigger.

First birthday. Mmm, cake!

He tried to get Noah to open his eyes when they first met. He's loved him from the get-go.

Happy Birthday, Big Boy.

Some of Mitchell's favorite things:
  • "Apparently ..."
  • Chocolate
  • Math (he can fill the hours asking "What's 4 + 3? What's 2 + 2?"
  • Chocolate
  • Spelling
  • Chocolate
  • Wii boxing
  • Hot Wheels
  • Chocolate
  • Shrimp
  • Chocolate
  • "Goosebumps" books (he has an extensive collection, and Paul reads them to him every night before bed)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Class & Teacher Gifts

Yesterday afternoon, it hit me that I didn't have a little gift for Mitchell's classmates or his teachers. Nothing like the last minute! We had an electrician out in the morning to install a new outlet for our new TV, then it was off to Mitchell's 4-year-old check-up then back home to meet the Geek Squad guys to install our new TV. Once all that was behind us, we jetted off to Hobby Lobby.

For the teachers, I made French Memo Boards. I let Mitchell choose the fabrics for his teachers, and I bought coordinating ribbon and gimp for them. I had not done this project before - nothing like the last minute to try something new! (Thank you, Tara, for the inspiration!)

This is the board I did for Mrs. LeChance. It was my first attempt, and I was really pleased with the results. And, I love the fabric. I used a really dark brown ribbon and gimp.

This is Mrs. A's board. The fabric is cute, and I used black ribbon and gimp. I wasn't really pleased with how it turned out - and it was too late to start over!

For Mitchell's classmates, I made jars of "Magical Reindeer Food" (oatmeal and glitter to us grown-ups). I printed out a little tag and tied it to each jar with a ribbon. Very cute. The tag reads
Be sure to take this magical food & sprinkle it on the lawn. Santa’s reindeer travel many miles before the early dawn. The smell of oats & the glitter path will guide them on their way, & you’ll wake up to Santa’s gifts on Christmas day!

For our crazy deer (who eat everything), we're putting sugar sprinkles in with the oatmeal. I'd hate to know that I gave the herd all tummy aches from the glitter!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

My Latest Scarf

I finished my latest scarf last night. That's two since Thanksgiving. If I keep up at this pace, I can make one for each of my girlfriends for Christmas next year.

The yarn I selected for this one is a hand-tied collection of different browns and turquoise with a little orange added to the mix. Since there are so many different textures, I decided to just knit this one.

I made the fringe from a section of the ribbon included with the yarn.

Here's that same ribbon knitted up.

Stitch detail - see all the different yarns?

If the weather continues to be as cold as it's been the past few days, I'll wear it to MOPS on Friday. I think it would look great with my orange cashmere sweater.

Scenes from a Birthday Party

We celebrated Mitchell's fourth birthday (which is tomorrow) with a Transformers themed party on Saturday. He loved his ice cream cake, which I think turned out super cool. Who cares that there was blue frosting all over everything in my kitchen after the party?

During the pinata, someone asked "Where's Noah?" I found him at the kids' picnic table, helping himself to the slices of cake some of the kiddos left behind. And, I have no clue whose juice box he's enjoying! (That face says it all!)

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

I've finally begun decorating for Christmas. (Actually, I had most of it done before Mitchell's birthday party this past weekend.)

I really like how my mantle turned out. I've since added stockings plus an angel figurine next to those jars on the left - there is an awkward hole in the picture above. I need to take a photo of my formal dining room - the swag I made for the stairs in our old home was too short to use here, so I used it on my hutch. Looks very good. I'll post a photo of it once my dining chairs come in.

Mitchell and I decorated the Christmas tree ...

most of it anyway! The lower third is ornament-free because of Noah. I had all the unbreakable ones down there, but I was finding them all over the house. So, I just moved everything out of his reach!

Monday, December 15, 2008

No Rest for the Girl Who Can't Say "No"

So, this week is the last week before the final countdown to Christmas.

Am I ready? No.

Have I finished shopping? Not hardly.

Do I know what I'm serving for Christmas dinner? Yes, and lunch and Christmas Eve dinner, too. (Though, I don't remember revising the menu over the weekend after several glasses of wine with my mother-in-law.)

So, in this season of hectic frenzy, I've decided to push aside the need for a Martha Stewart-like family celebration and instead focus on what matters most: Being surrounded by the people you love and helping those who need more than you (even if it's a hug and a kind word).

- - -

My friend Stace sends me an email yesterday that her mother has been admitted to the cardiac ICU due to complications related to emphysema and COPD. I instantly have flash backs to the summer I turned 16 and my grandmother was in the hospital, suffering along these same lines. I have known Stace for a few months now, and I am her assistant in coordinating crafts for our MOPS group. Her youngest daughter is a few months younger than Noah, so I instantly volunteered to look after her so Stace can spend more quality time with her mother (instead of chasing a toddler around a hospital room). Her older two children are in elementary school, so she has just Sarah to worry about during the day.

I still haven't even started shopping for Noah. I have no idea what to get this textbook second child. I mean, the kid has everything - because his older brother had everything at that age. I feel bad for Noah lots of times, especially considering that he doesn't even have a pair of jammies that aren't hand-me-downs. Guess I can add PJs to the list! One gift down ...

During a wine-filled evening the other day, apparently I revised my original menu for the Christmas break (with the help of my mother-in-law). Now I'm making creamed spinach. Yum-o! I had wanted to include this on the original menu but had scratched it in favor of creamed onions, a Gannon family tradition. I may have remembered one of us uttering that they got them at Thanksgiving so we could make what we want at Christmas.

I have done no shopping for my in-laws for Christmas. I don't even know where to start! We agreed with Frank that we wouldn't exchange gifts, but I know he picked up something for the boys - and he's flying down to be with us for Christmas. I can't let him go without something under the tree. I did pick up a little something for him back in October at Ole, but I don't feel it's enough. And, honestly, what do I possibly give to my in-laws, who've given us so much?

I have given no real thought to what to get Mitchell's teachers and the front-office ladies. He'll go to school on Wednesday and Friday of this week and that's it until after the new year. I've thought about making some fancy clipboards for his teachers, as they have to carry one with them anytime they leave their classroom. (It should be noted that this is a project I've never attempted! No time like crunch time to try something new!!!) Our class as a whole collected money to purchase gift cards for the teachers, but I feel like I need to give them something more. After all, they give us so much.

Luckily, Paul and I have decided not to buy each other gifts this year. Instead, we bought a Wii as a family gift. He already hooked it up, and we're wasting entirely too much time playing on it! Finally, our game room has a purpose. (It had been my refuge while nursing, but since those days are behind me, it only got used when we had company.)

Oh yeah, tomorrow is usually my grocery shopping day. I may have an extra toddler in the morning, and the cable company is supposed to send someone out to install a high-def package so everything will be ready to roll when our new LCD TV arrives on New Year's Eve. Yippee! (For the new TV, not for the lack of grocery shopping - I stress at the idea of running out of bread or boy cheese or yummy flavored coffee creamer - of which I'm already out!)

I'm beginning to feel like I'm down to the wire but can't seem to make a loop to hang on. And, I just remembered that I have to do some reading for our MOPS group on Friday and create an outline for my Sunday School class, which will resume after the New Year.

And, that reminds me that it's our week to coordinate a craft for MOPS. Stace and I had talked about doing some beaded ornaments, but then with her mother falling ill, she had contacted someone outside our group to come in and lead a craft. It sounds like a really neat project, but I'm eagerly awaiting a phone call or some direction so I can ensure we have something. I guess it's not the end of the world to not have a craft this month.

Let's not even bring up the friend of mine who is facing the decision to have surgery or ride out the tumors in his lungs, the friend who has cancer and is figuring out how to keep things together since he lost his job too, the friend whose daughter is less than a year old and is facing another surgery, the friend who will face the first Christmas without her husband who was unfaithful to their marriage and chose the other woman over their family ... makes all my stresses seem like nothing at all.

I think I'll pour (another!) glass of wine and knit for a few minutes while I wait for Paul to come down from putting Mitchell to bed. I can hear him reading stories right now - and I always wait to start "Chuck" so he can watch it with me.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Special Delivery

Mitchell has been out of school since the Friday before Thanksgiving. And, I know that his friends miss him - their mommies have told me so.

Yesterday, Mitchell got a very special card in the mail.

I like that the teachers took time to write each child's name so we'd know what the letters represent.

Winter Wonderland

Old Man Winter blew into our neighborhood last night, bringing howling wind and snow. It was amazing to wake up to a thin, white blanket this morning!

The wind blew off several chair covers, and you can really see the snow on them.

Mitchell was amazed at how soft the snow was. He touched it for about 4 seconds then wanted to go back inside because the wind was too cold.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Snapshots 2: Thanksgiving Edition

I know, I know ... I'm way behind!

Here are some highlights from our Thanksgiving trip the Houston area.

My boys love cows. Yep, cows. My mother and her husband have two black Angus cows, and they think they're dogs (the people and the cows think the cows are dogs - the cows don't think my mom and her husband are dogs, as far as I know). Reba and T-Bone just loved our boys, and the boys loved them too. In fact, Noah started saying "Cow."

Noah talks a lot more now. In addition to saying "cow," Noah also says "cracker," "dog," "Pa-Pa," "ball," "book" (usually accompanied by him bringing me a book to read him!) ... His verbal ability is really taking off. I blame it attribute it to Uncle Frank. Something about Paul's brother brings out the need to advance. I remember him spurring on Mitchell to walk.

Mitchell "apparently likes cranberry sauce." He also "apparently likes onions" and olives and just about anything else that was served at our Thanksgiving dinners.

Noah also loves Thanksgiving food. Those two boys ate tons.

Mitchell is very complimentary. During the break, he announced that some people really make the best foods:
  • Nanny: cinnamon rolls
  • Uncle Jim: deep fried turkey vulture
  • Aunt Llana: cranberry sauce and sweet potatoes
  • Grandma: stuffing and regular turkey
  • Mommy: onions (a Gannon family tradition is creamed onions at holiday meals, and I'm now in charge of the onions). See note above about him liking onions.
  • Daddy: Guacamole (though he didn't make any over the break)

Mitchell had his tonsils and adenoids taken out on Wednesday. Today he's back 100 percent. He's as nutty as usual and full of energy. I guess four days of rest have built up the craziness!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Pink Christmas - Finished and in the Mail

I finally finished my Pink Christmas gifts and got them in the mail today. I'm in love with everything I made, especially the scarf. I'm really excited that I have enough yarn and ribbons left over to make one for myself.

For the scarf, I knitted two different yarns together. One was a basic brown with a hint of blue in it. The other was one that went from a tiny strand of brown to nubby lenghts of orange, yellow, blue and pink. It came out gorgeous! I only knitted this time (no purling - I was being lazy, even though I love purling). When I finished, I tied on some ribbons at the ends to create a fringe. It really gave it a nice, finished look.

For the other items, I created a matching office set with a "Messages" chalkboard, file folders, pen cup and even a personalized journal. I chose coordinating scrapbook papers for all of the items.

The biggest challenge of this project was the message board letters. I Mod Podged the scrapbook paper to the letters first and then attempted to cut them out with an Xacto knife. Next time, I'll trace them onto my paper, cut them out then adhere them to the wood letters.

And, I love altered paper items, so of course I love the file folders, pen cup and journal. I even went as far as cutting out the recipient's name - Chris - in coordinating paper and adhering it to the journal.

I hope Chris enjoys the items I've created for her. (And, selfishly, I can't wait to see what someone created for me!)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A Quick Update

Okay, I haven't posted anything in a while, and I have good reason!

First, we headed to Baytown and then Houston last week to celebrate Thanksgiving. (Photos to follow soon, I promise!)

We got home on Sunday afternoon then I got to work with "fall cleaning" and ended up going through the boys' closets and drawers, polishing all my wood in my house - even my cabinets - and really going overboard. Oh, but I didn't bother to put away any of the toys in the living room!

And, this morning, we took Mitchell for surgery to remove his tonsils and adenoids. He's back home now, sleeping in my bed - but not after two popsicles at the hospital and some chocolate ice cream here at home. In fact, he was so tired, he would fall asleep after almost each bite. Then, he asked if I'd help him eat the ice cream, so I sat in bed and scooped it into his mouth.

Once I know he's feeling better and life returns a little more close to normal (whatever that means!), then I'll pop up some photos from the break. Here's a sneak peek: COWS who think they're dogs and the children (mine!) who love them!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Dance Party

"Ring, ring doorbell ring, it's house party time ..."

Dan didn't tell us it was time for a dance party, but I just knew that my crabby boys needed some sort of distraction. (I'm not sure who loves Dan more - Mitchell or me. My money is on me!)

So, I grabbed my iPhone, hooked it up to our stereo and started playing songs.

It started innocently enough with "Cecilia" by Simon and Garfunkel. Mitchell was playing the drums, and Noah was just happy being a part of all the noise.

Then it moved on and the dancing got underway. Before long, we were going around the living room, doing our best "Walk Like an Egyptian." Then we started to "Wang Chung." I'm still not even sure what that means, but it didn't hold us back!

There was "Big Yellow Taxi" at some point, because it's Mitchell's favorite (the Counting Crows cover, not the original). There was almost "Take a Chance on Me," but Mitchell has apparently outgrown his love of Abba.

At one point, I was tickling them every time it said "The eye of the tiger." I knew at that point that we were all really done!

So, we put our two exhausted boys to bed, hopefully to have good sleeps, as we prepare to drive 4+ hours tomorrow for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Happy Birthday, KimChee!

First, let it be know that I've hit 200 posts! Chardonnay all around!

Now for the real post ...

Today is my baby sister's birthday. Happy, Happy, Kimberly!

Here are a few things about Kimberly that will embarrass her and make her tell me to "Shut up" while waving her hand at me ...

  • Kimberly can dance like Axl Rose like it's nobody's business. Seriously, this girl can swivel those hips and swing out those legs just like she's in the "Sweet Child O'Mine" video.
  • Kimberly is shorter than me but her legs are way longer than mine. It's really disgusting - my whole life, growing up with this little sister with these fantastic long legs (and no saddle bags - and her thighs don't rub when she walks).
  • Kimberly has gorgeous naturally blonde hair and blue eyes. Yeah, I was always the odd kid out - both sisters and my brother had blonde, wavy hair. Here I am with board-straight brown. Even when my mom got me a perm, you could tell it just wasn't right.
  • Kimberly can pass gas like it's nobody's business. No lie - this girl can share it with the whole room while spinning around. If that's not talent, I don't know what is!
  • Kimberly gets so easily embarrassed that I would never in a million years show her this post. She just may drive four hours, hunt me down and fart on me. Oh wait, I'm safe - she has the worst since of direction ever!
  • Kimberly can give you a really obnoxious nick name and you never complain. Just ask Paulie Pops.
  • Kimberly was convinced that all my high school and college boyfriends (and all our brother's girlfriends) were Chinese. For the record, none were.

So, happy birthday KimChee, Kimberfoo, Kimbulee ... I love you!

What's in a Name?

Does this sound like me?

What MaryAnna Means

You are confident, self assured, and capable. You are not easily intimidated.

You master any and all skills easily. You don't have to work hard for what you want.

You make your life out to be exactly how you want it. And you'll knock down anyone who gets in your way!

You are usually the best at everything ... you strive for perfection.

You are confident, authoritative, and aggressive.

You have the classic “Type A” personality.

You are wild, crazy, and a huge rebel. You're always up to something.

You have a ton of energy, and most people can't handle you. You're very intense.

You definitely are a handful, and you're likely to get in trouble. But your kind of trouble is a lot of fun.

You are a free spirit, and you resent anyone who tries to fence you in.

You are unpredictable, adventurous, and always a little surprising.

You may miss out by not settling down, but you're too busy having fun to care.

You are very intuitive and wise. You understand the world better than most people.

You also have a very active imagination. You often get carried away with your thoughts.

You are prone to a little paranoia and jealousy. You sometimes go overboard in interpreting signals.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Crafty Momma: The Inside of the Turkey Cards

I finally got inspired for the inside of my turkey cards for Thanksgiving.

I like to mix typefaces, so here I used Trebuchet and Amelie. (You can purchase Amelie at

I distressed the edges, added some little snaps in the corners then signed our names. I prefer to hand-write the names in instead of printing them - makes it a little more personalized, I think.

(Oh, I took step-by-step photos of distressing the edges because I've had friends ask how to do it. If anyone is interested, let me know and I'll post them.)

Side note: I know I've got brass eyelets somewhere in my craft room, but since it's pure chaos in there, I figured I'd just use the snaps since I knew where to find them! It will forever bug me that they are shiny silver and not something that matches better with the feel of the card. I'm weird; I know!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Crafty Momma: Thanksgiving Cards

I love to do crafty stuff, but combining kids and paint (and my furniture!) terrifies me! Today, though, I sucked it up and made handprint turkeys for Thanksgiving cards.

We have turkeys of all types, including one with a mohawk, ones that's missing a few tail feathers (poor guy!), one with a strange growth on his head (might want to see a doctor!) and a few that came out just adorable.

This one was my favorite!

Fun Fall Fotos

We've been enjoying not-so-hot weather the past few weeks, so here are some photos of the fun we're having this fall.

You can't read it too well, but his shirt says "Captain Adorable."

Mitchell showing me his muscles.

More Mitchell muscles.

Noah likes to sit in his giant Tonka dump truck.

And, of course, Mitchell likes to dump him out!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I was Tagged (Again!)

Jen tagged me for a photo tag. It was supposed to be something like the fourth picture in your fourth folder. That was too boring (especially since you've seen that picture already!).

So, I went to my Shutterfly account and pulled it from there.

This was Mitchell the day after he was born, just before we left the hospital. See how tiny he was? He weighed just 5 pounds, 12 ounces. He had all these wrinkles because his skin was so baggy! The outfit I brought to bring him home in hung off of him - and the socks just swallowed up his tiny feet.

After struggling with "failure to thrive" at the beginning, he pulled through and has always been a trooper. As you can see from the photos today, nothing has held this kid back!

Here's a photo taken just minutes after he was born. Look how tiny his fingers are as they're curled around Paul's finger!

And for grins, here's a photo of Noah, a few minutes after he was born. Notice how much chubbier he was! He was 6 pounds, 11 ounces - almost a full pound bigger than Mitchell. It's amazing the difference four weeks can make! (Mitchell was born four weeks early.)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Teachable Moments of Kindness

Friday, I dropped off Mitchell at preschool, ran a few quick errands and came home to start cooking supper for our friends Glenn and Irene and their family.

You see, Glenn has Multiple Myeloma, a bone marrow cancer. Adding insult to injury, Glenn went into kidney failure and spent six days in the hospital. He's home now and had to undergo dialysis to help his kidneys. He's also going to chemo treatments twice a week. Next week, he starts rounds that will possibly cause him to lose his hair.

So, I came home and made salad, pork loin, fresh green beans and a pumpkin crisp. I also picked up some mashed potatoes (which I don't even make for my own family!). I picked up Mitchell from preschool, and we drove out to Glenn and Irene's home to drop off the supper. The boys played with their four kiddos for hours! It was great to spend time with them, even if it did take almost two hours to get home. Gotta love that rush hour traffic!

Saturday, Mitchell and I went to a birthday party and stopped on the way home to pick up a hamburger for Paul. I ordered a cheeseburger in case one of the boys saw Paul's and decided he needed a burger too.

As I was getting Mitchell secured in the car, I saw a homeless man walking through the parking lot. For an instant, our eyes met. I watched him walk around the corner from the burger joint and sit on the steps of a tire-change place.

I drove my car around the corner and rolled down my window and asked if he was waiting for someone. He said no. Then I asked if he'd like a cheeseburger. He lit up and walked over and accepted the cheeseburger from me. The weather was going to be cold Saturday night, so all I thought of the rest of the night was this gentle-looking man in his thin jacket, out in the cold.

This afternoon, after church, we went to lunch with a friend and their two kiddos. The restaurant was crowded and we couldn't find two tables close enough to push together. There was a dad there with his two teen-age sons. I asked if he'd be willing to move to another table so we could push his table together with an empty one so we could all sit together. He kindly said yes.

I hope that all three of these instances help teach Mitchell that we can be kind to people we know and people we don't know who need our help - and that people will be kind to us too.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Snapshots 1.5

I completely forgot the one that inspired me to start my "Snapshots!"

When Noah hears the toaster ding (or the microwave beep or the can opener work), he comes running into the kitchen and eagerly waits for me to hand him something. If you don't give him something, he follows you around and gibbers something.

Snapshots 1

My girlfriend Jen does a great job of documenting little snippets of the silly stuff her kids do throughout the day. She calls them "Bits and Pieces." I always love those glimpses.

So, I've decided I'm going to totally copy her but call mine "Snapshots."

Here goes:

We were at the grocery store the other day and parked next to a really sexy sports car. Mitchell said it was a Hot Wheels then asked what kind. I told him it was a 350Z. He gets down on his hands and knees and looks under the car and says "Yep, it's a Hot Wheels." (For those of you who don't know, Hot Wheels have the logo and the make on the bottom.)

Noah loves to help put things away. At Kindermusik, we sing a song about putting our toys away. While he's putting things away, he sings, "Thank you, thank you" in the tune of the song.

Noah also loves to throw things away. He'll take a few bites from his waffle then walk over to the trash and throw it away. What's worse is a few hours later when he's walking around with a waffle!

Mitchell likes to name things. Our fall and Halloween decorations all had names. For instance, there was Mr. Punks (our artificial Jack o'Lantern), Mr. Scare (the scarecrow), Mr. Seed (the weird thing on the scarecrow - I think it was supposed to be corn on the cob but I'm not sure) and Mr. Bones and Mr. Teeth (the skeleton decorations). I think it's odd that they're all misters.

Noah wants to draw and write really badly. If he finds a pencil around, he'll grab it up and then start looking for paper (and vice versa). I saw that he even drew on the bottom of one of my laundry baskets.

Mitchell likes to say goodbye to Max as we're pulling out of the driveway. He says "Goodbye sweet kitty girl. Have a good day." Now, Noah waves and says "byyyyeee" as we're backing out. So cute!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Silly Pics from the Weekend

Noah hasn't felt well this weekend (fever, runny nose, congestion, screaming for hours at a time in the middle of the night), so it kinda scrapped our plans of going to Wurstfest yesterday. But, we make life fun wherever we are, so here are some silly pics of the boys from this weekend.

Mitchell won these goggles at a fall festival, and he has to wear them during baths. He also calls them his super hero mask and his new "Wrestle Mania" nickname is the Masked Avenger. (Yes, he even wore them while wrestling with Paul, the Spectacled Spudado.)

Death by pretzels. He may not feel well, but the boy sure can snack!

My little helper. Noah brought me my cup of tea and dripped some on the carpet (very little though, which was surprising). I grabbed a wipe and started to clean it up when he took the wipe from me and started cleaning. Then, I told him to throw it away, so he did!

Closing the lid.

Notice the "necklace" - it's a Halloween headband with devil horns. Like I said, these boys know how to make even the must mundane of tasks fun.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Things I Wonder (all in the last few minutes)

  • Why on earth did I think I could have pillows with tassels on my sofa?
  • When did I stop being "mom" and start being "referee?"
  • Do they really not hear me say the same thing over and over and over again?
  • What did Mitchell do this time to make Noah cry?
  • Why do I even have sofa pillows if they spend most of the time on the floor?
  • When will my chocolate chip banana bread be ready?
  • How'd Noah get that bump on his head?
  • Where can I hide that damn wooden recorder?
  • How long until 5 o'clock?
  • Is it wrong to want a glass of wine at 4:10 on a Wednesday afternoon?
  • Does Mitchell ask everyone what their middle name is because I'm constantly calling him by his?
  • Why does it take me almost shouting "Stop It!" for them to finally stop it (for second anyway)?
  • Does Mitchell really think that whining and hugging me after I fuss at him is going to make me less agitated?
  • What's the worse that would happen if Noah fell off the coffee table?
  • When will my chocolate chip banana bread be ready?
  • Is it wrong to want a glass of wine at 4:13 on a Wednesday afternoon?

Halloween Pic (Finally!)

The boys didn't cooperate too well, so I didn't get to take tons of photos on Halloween like I would have liked! Mitchell went as Batman, and Noah was a little monkey. (It's only appropriate that Noah was a monkey, given his jovial personality - he is our little monkey!)

Our neighborhood has houses with big yards that are spread out, so kiddos would be tuckered out after the third house. So, instead, we had a Boo Parade, where all the kids lined up and paraded down one street while the parents lined the curb and handed out candy. Then, we had a big neighborhood party, complete with pizza, all kinds of goodies and bounce houses for fun.

All in all, we had a great time. We're rationing out the candy, one piece at a time. (Though, Mitchell asks every 5-10 minutes!)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Rock the Vote!

The last time I voted in a presidential election, I was pregnant with Mitchell. (In fact, I wrote thank-you notes for baby shower gifts while waiting in line.)

This time, it was fun to take the boys with me. It even got me bumped to the very front of the line as we early voted.

Mitchell and I have been talking about what it means to vote and how we choose who we'll vote for. So, now he has his own informed political message.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Three Things I Can Do Without Everyday

Anna has inspired me to participate in her Monday List Posts. So, to start, my list is Three Things I Can Do Without Everyday, a photo list.

The whine

The digging through my cabinets
(especially the liquor cabinet and the china hutch, as pictured above)

The 3-year-old attitude.
(Here, he's instructing me to not take his photo.)

There is one thing I can't live without though, and that's my boys. I love them all.