Bear Compare

When my kids were small I took their picture with the same bear on their monthly birthdays. After their first birthday it became an annual event. Aren’t they going to love that on their 16th, 21st and 30th birthdays?

Here is Audrey at 4-years old with the trusty nameless bear and her two green kitties. You can see her at 3-years, 2-years, 1-year and 1-month here.

Now We Are Six

Last month we celebrated Elliot’s birthday twice, once on his actual birthday with ice cream and sprinkle donuts


And then the following weekend with an ice cream social at a nearby park complete with old-school track & field day games.


Six has proven to be a roller coaster. As his teacher says, there’s a lot of emotion. Actually, it should be Emotion. Capital E emotion. He’s testing his boundaries. He’s testing us. Every. Single. Day. Fortunately, it’s more good than bad. Every. Single. Day.

So You Say It’s Your Birthday

Today Audrey turned four. This is the first birthday of hers when she’s had honest-to-goodness directed attention. Last year she and Elliot shared a party, the year before that she didn’t have a party, the year before that she was one and he thought her party was for him and the year before that she gave him Thomas Duplo to commemorate her own birth.

But this year? This year she had a party that he wasn’t invited to. She got presents he doesn’t want to play with. He had a supporting role in the Audrey show.

He’s so good at doing her bidding that he made her breakfast. By choice. He wanted to do it! That’s how good she is, he offers to do stuff for her and he thinks that he’s coming out ahead.

Other than her uncanny ability to wrap her brother around her finger, she can also push his buttons. Without even breaking a sweat. She is the typical little sister.

Today they were best friends. He struggled with the attention she got, with the getting to spend her birthday money and he wouldn’t be getting anything tangible. And through it all he hugged her. And held her hand. And was a great big brother. Even though it was really all about her.

Or maybe it can never be about one of them without how the other impacts them. She wouldn’t be the articulate, silly, wonder-filled kid she is if she didn’t have Elliot as a big brother. So while happy birthday wishes are in order for Audrey, happy anniversay-of-the-day-you-became-a-big-brother wishes are bestowed on Elliot too.

Animal Noises

Audrey’s face as she makes animal noises.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: AudreyFaces

A Little Maniacal

There’s no point to this picture, except that it’s funny

And this one is just plain sweet

How many more years will they allow me to dress them in coordinating outfits?

Adieu 2008

We took the kids ice skating last night at a temporay outdoor ice rink in a neighboring town. Poor Elliot, one blade on the ice and WIPE OUT! He has the bruise on his head to prove it. After that he was happy to take a ride in the sled, as was Audrey. But soon his bravery reappeared and he skated, on his own for about an hour. The rink had all sorts of tools to help kids learn to lean forward while skating. Elliot’s tool of choice was a shovel.

After a fun time skating in 50-degree weather, we went in search of hot cocoa. Coffee shops were not open, it was after 8pm on NYE – why would you want that business? So we ended up at our local neighborhood bar & grill and had sundaes! Elliot declared it a great night and that every NYE we should go ice skating and out for ice cream. I’ll hold him to that when he’s older.

Welcome to 2009 everyone.

Better Watch Out

Hand Turkey


I made a hand turkey just for you! This really was harder than imagined. My laptop has a little button controller between the G, H and B keys (I think it might could be called a nipple). I held my hand on the screen and then traced it. Then! I used the awesome spray can tool in MS Paint v 5.1 SP 3.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Happy Halloween

May the Force be with you this trick-or-treating night.

Growth Chart

I am a creature of habit. I think it’s my defense mechanism for analysis paralysis. Completely unrelated to the pictures below, I heard on NPR a few weeks back a woman who researched happiness. She determined that the happiest people are those that are satisfied. Those that have a set of requirements for, say, pasta sauce and as soon as they find a jar that meets those requirements they purchase it. They do not continue to look at pasta sauces. Why would they? They have one that meets all their needs.

My pumpkin patch experience is like that. There are more patches around here. Some even closer than the one we have gone to for the last five years. But I like this one. We will go here until Audrey leaves for college.

(The above anecdote should not leave the reader with the idea that the author does not suffer from analysis paralysis. She does. Too often.)

Back to the pretty pictures. Baby Elliot was a little chub of baby, with rosy cheeks because of eczema and a moist kiss because of the drool. Two-year old Elliot is totally excited that he can do basically whatever he wants because mommy can’t catch him, what with that baby sister of his strapped to her front side. 2006 was good, everyone could walk. 2007 Audrey figures out it was funny to poke her belly button in pictures. And this year? This year they look like KIDS. Good grief, when did that happen?

I just noticed, they upgraded the sign this year. Now there are cornstalks tied to the posts that hold up the sign. That? That’s classy. And that’s why we’ll be back next year. And the year after.

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