Sunday, December 6, 2009


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1. steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., esp. in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.

Join me, if you will, about 4 minutes into the episode:

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Cake That NEVER Was, the Ghost That ALMOST Was, and the Pirate that WAS…and Still Is

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Oh, the drama that was Halloween. Or at least the choosing of the costume! Weeks ago, I did something on the spur of the moment. I asked Sam what he wanted to be for Halloween. I’m not sure that I was planning on asking him this year. I really didn’t think he’d know what I was talking about or have a preference. I was wrong. The first time I ever asked him the question, he immediately replied “A cake!” I asked the question several times and in different ways and he was very clear that he wanted to be a cake. Well…ok then. He was so sure he wanted to be a cake, that looking through catalogs and finding other costumes he liked didn’t deter him one bit. He still wanted to be a cake. I took about 8 minutes of video, which I’ll spare you from, of us searching costumes. Screenshots from the video:

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You’ll have to trust me on this, but I swear Sam actually said during the fun, “Oh, no cake.” So, he was pretty happy when I showed him Pottery Barn Kids cupcake costume.

PotteryBarnKidsCupcakeCostume_1251548428503_thumb Anyway, he was holding steadfast to his dream of being a cake. So I found directions for this costume on some Canadian Magazine website. He wanted to be a chocolate cake with sprinkles, so I figured it would be easy to modify the costume.

S_0906_costumes1 Honestly, I dreaded the work ahead of me and thankfully, I didn’t get started weeks ago. After a week of wanting to be a cake, he suddenly decided he wanted to be a ghost…”a big scary ghost so I can say WhooooOOOOOOOooooooooOOOO!” (And as he said it, he weaved his head back and forth…so cute!) Sure! A ghost I can handle! Of course, I couldn’t let him be some ordinary, “sheet with holes” ghost. Oh, no. I had to add a little something so it would be just a little more unique. After about 2 weeks of saying he wanted to be a ghost, I was finally convinced enough to buy material. Then on Halloween morning, I started assembling the ensemble. Getting him to stand still was a challenge, so meet Elmo, who was kind enough to model the ghost costume without moving.

DSC_0086 It turns out, working with satin has its challenges. The trick was finding a way to keep it on his head and get the tulle attached as well. I had to turn the eye-holes into a face opening because Sam wasn’t diggin’ on the whole covered face thing. I spent a lot of time on Saturday trying to figure out how to make the ghost costume work. Thankfully, Scott was home all morning and was willing to add commentary such as “Holes in a sheet would have been much easier.” (Sometimes I don’t think he gets me at all!)

And here’s where weeks of planning get shot down in one breathe. At 3:41, one hour before we needed to leave for the Harvest Festival at the church, Sam decides that he doesn’t like the ghost costume at all and won’t wear it. He really didn’t like being under the costume. So, I rushed out to the store and bought him the first costume I could find in his size: Captain Jack Sparrow. Then I rushed to another store and bought a bunch of accessories to enhance Captain Jack’s ensemble-in-a-bag. Sam was excited about the pirate costume since his friend Samuel was dressing up as a pirate, too. As you can see, everything worked out and we decided that Sam was MUCH cuter in the pirate costume. Even if, after only about 5 minutes, he had gotten rid of the wig, hat, and earring.

DSC_0002 (2) DSC_0004 (2) DSC_0008 (2) DSC_0010 (2) Sam loved being a pirate! In fact, upon waking Sunday morning, he couldn't get back into his costume fast enough! And what did “Captain Sam” think of the ghost costume?


That’s all right. Since this may be the last year that I actually give Sam a choice, I already have his costume picked out for next year and I may just get started now. Jennifer shared this with me and it may be my all-time favorite idea:


Saturday, October 31, 2009

Why, yes.

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Yes, he did dress himself this morning. Why do you ask?

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Friday, October 30, 2009


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I MUST share a new discovery!, one of my daily must-reads, introduced me to PhotoJoy this week. And I am in LOVE! I've been playing with it for the last 30 minutes and I can hardly contain my excitement! (Oh, how I wish they would pay me to say that!) If you like using your own photos as your desktop or your screensaver, then you will also LOVE it. It is soooo incredibly easy to use!

Here's a look at PhotoJoy:

It is so incredibly hard to decide which desktop and screensaver to use. I downloaded them all just so I could switch whenever my little heart desires!

Here's my desktop as of a few minutes ago:

How cute is that?! See that little book at the bottom, center of the screen? I placed that there and it flips pages every few seconds. The other pictures change after several minutes. And isn't the old student desktop just gorgeous?! Seriously, I can't say enough about the program!

Hurry, go now and get your own! You, too, Jennifer! I promise y'all will have so much fun! Click on my desktop above to go to PhotoJoy's site. And, please share. I'd love to see your gorgeous desktops!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sam’s Grand Finale

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The last post in the series “Sam’s Vocal Recital.” 

Sam sings “God Said It” which he learned from his babysitter:

And his grand finale, “Apples and Bananas.”

Sam is turning out to be a very musical child.  He picks up songs after hearing them once and he has started making up his own songs.  I am pretty sure he’ll be an auditory learner and his phonemic awareness at such a young age bodes well for learning to read!  I, of course, couldn’t be happier!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

As Promised…

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Here are two more videos of Sam captured during a rare moment.  He sings all the time…but rare is the moment that I can actually record his performances.  This night, he was in a particularly giving mood! So I kept the camera rolling to capture as many songs as I could!

Sam singing the theme to Thomas the Tank Engine:

Thomas singing “I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly”:

Coming soon:  Sam sings “Apples and Bananas” and “God Said it”  (the last in the series!)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Surely You Heard Him!

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Well, I finally finished helping Jennifer design her blog, so now I'll be able to turn my attentioin to my own, pitiful, broken blog. I hate that I'm missing all my links to other blogs and such. I'll get that fixed soon. Meanwhile, head on over to Jennifer's blog. She was featured today at The Secret is in the Sauce. So she had quite a busy blog day! Check her out and see why she has become so popular!

Now, I just have two more blogs to design (after I put mine back together) and then I'll be somewhat caught up!

Well, the real reason for actually posting tonight (when I should be doing paperwork) is that Sam gave us a concert tonight. Generally, to get a video of Sam performing, I have to follow him around for days. But tonight was special! I actually have four or five videos of him because he very willingly sang all of the songs on his current set list!

Did I say "very willingly?" Oops! I actually meant to say "very loudly!" Here's the first example with more to follow this week.

Monday, September 28, 2009

It Came Back!

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My heart came home yesterday!

Sam left Friday morning on his very first trip away from home without me.  Scott took him with him to his parents’ house and I was left all by myself in a very quiet house.  Two days later, my boys returned and I got the best hug in the history of the universe from my sweet little boy!

Thankfully, when Sam got out of the car, he seemed as happy to see me as I was to see him.  I picked him up, hugged him, and set him on the edge of the van.  We both just kept holding each other without a word being spoken.  His embrace was just as tight as mine.  I kept wondering if I was the one determining how long the hug would go on, but no, I was just following Sam on this one.  His head was rested on my shoulder and, ooh, my favorite part, his little hands were patting me! I love it when he does that!  Oh, the hug seemed to go on for days and I never want to forget how loved I felt in that moment.  I truly hope that’s the way I make him feel everyday.

On a different note, near the end of summer, Sam all of a sudden became a very expressive, imaginative, creative little boy.  Not quite 3 1/2 at the time, there was a definite shift in how dramatic his face became when he talked.  Oh, the gestures and expressions!  We’ve said a few times that the entertainment alone is worth all the money we spent on conceiving him!

I finally found a short video taken as Sam was playing with a train app on Daddy’s iPhone. I hope it makes you smile! Sam watches it and bursts out laughing!

Not the best sample, but a sample nonetheless of Sam’s ever expressive face:

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Doggone it!

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I logged into the wrong blog and made some html changes and totally messed my blog up! Oh, well! It's time for a change anyway. But it's going to have to wait until I finish working on someone else's blog! So, hopefully things will be back to normal by Monday!

While I have you hear, I'll tell you that this is a hard weekend for me. Sam is spending his first weekend away from home and I am lonely without him! On top of that, he has a fever today! So now, every little "Mother Cell" in my body is just aching to be with him to be a Mommy today!

Scott took this picture with his phone as Sam was getting ready to leave yesterday:

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Virtues of YouTube…Again!

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Sam and I have had so much fun this morning exploring YouTube and discovering fun new videos! I went on there to look for a video of “Apple and Bananas” which we’ve been singing together for the past few days. We found this wonderful version that makes Sam laugh hysterically!

Then we went on to find lots of wonderful songs and stories. Some of them are video productions of the stories, some are read alouds using narrators and the book illustrations, and some are great animated shorts. Here are just a few that we added to Sammy’s playlist. Click on the images to watch the videos.

ThereWasAnOldLadyWhoSwallowedAFly bear-snores-on_256 cover giving20tree16qc1 gruffalo1 ss_GreenEggsAndHam

You can also find treasures like this, with the author reading the story:

Too bad YouTube is blocked in our school district. If you take time to preview videos (which you MUST do) you’ll find a wealth of resources just there for the viewing!

Oh, I have to share this story, as it started with “Apples and Bananas.” Scott knows how much I hate phonics rules, considering how unreliable MOST of them are. (C’mon, a rule with more exceptions than absolutes can hardly qualify as a rule.) Anyway, he’s always trying to challenge me, either trying to prove a rule or find an exception and a word. Depending on what side of the fence I'm on. Most of the time he’s teasing me. I think. So here’s the conversation that left me laughing myself into tears this morning. You probably won’t laugh, but it sure got to me.

Sam and I were playing on the bed while Scott was getting dressed and we were singing “Apples and Bananas,” going through each vowel sound. At the end of the song:

Scott: What about y? It’s a vowel.

Me: Only when it sounds like a vowel. Usually at the end of a word when it sounds like i or e. Like in “my.”

Remember, he’s always trying to prove me wrong…find an exception…

Scott: (tiny thinking pause…signaled by the smoke) What about the y in “why?”

Me: What about it? It’s at the end and it sounds like an i.

Scott: (smirking) How do you know it’s not a silent w-h?

And then I just fell off the bed laughing. God, I love that man! And I’m gonna choose to believe that he was trying to be funny.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Gone Fishing with Grandpa

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When my Dad met Sam for the very first time, he brought him a fishing pole.  The second gift he ever gave him was a t-shirt with a big goofy fish on the front.  (The t-shirt was so big that Sammy has been wearing it at naptime for about two years and he still hasn’t grown into it.)  My Dad has been patiently waiting for the day to come when he would be able to take Sam on his very first fishing trip. 

Recently, Sam discovered his fishing pole hidden in the back of his closet.  He showed a lot of interest in it around the house and with my parents coming down for a visit this weekend, it seemed like the perfect time to introduce Sam to the fine art of fishing.  I don’t think my Dad could have been any happier.  And it was fun to see how excited Scott was, too.  I enjoyed watching the boys getting ready, though I think the anticipation was a bit much for Sam.  He got in trouble a few times before we could get out the door and down to the river!

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Here are a few of my favorite shots from our morning down by the river.

Highlights Sammy's First Fishing Trip collage 1 Gramma gots lots of good Sammy time! Especially since I had a camera stuck to my face!

Highlights Sammy's First Fishing Trip Collage 2

Scott was on a mission.  I asked him what if it was just minnows nibbling at his bait.   He said he didn’t care what he pulled up, as long as he pulled up something to show Sammy!

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I’m glad someone was fishing. Sam was more interested in other things. Looks like these were the only fish he would be catching.

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Whew! Was I excited when Granddaddy finally caught a fish!  (That meant we could finally go home for lunch!)  Sam was excited, too!  We had no problem getting him to touch the fish.  But holding the fish so I could take a picture was another story. It took a little coaxing because apparently the fish was “covered in filthy.”  Thankfully, Sam took one for the team held it long enough so I could get one picture!

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With a fish finally caught, Sam, Gramma and I could finally head back home.  Scott and Granddaddy stayed behind to fight the good fight.  I’m told that after we left, the fish really started biting. I think Scott said something about catching three. And of course they were all bigger than the first!

It was a long walk back to the car, so we stopped to rest and goof around for a few minutes.

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We stopped one more time to take in the view.

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Mom tried to teach Sam how to be a real fisherman.

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But, bless his heart, the child is just a little too honest sometimes.

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