Thursday, October 29, 2009

Halloween Treats

I don't cook. Or bake. Or do much of anything creative in the kitchen. And I work full-time, so one of my least favorite times of the day is at 5p when I'm picking the girls up from school and trying to decide what we're going to do for dinner. And this happens at least 2, usually 3 times a week (because Tuesday and Friday nights we have a set menu of Moe's/Chick-fil-A and Alfredo's Pizza, respectively).

So I'm not really sure what got into me when I decided to make some Halloween treats for Ivie's classroom's "Fall Festival" party at school. I'm usually all about going to the store and picking up Cheetos, cookies, drinks, or whatever else the teacher says they need.

I guess it was the adorable snacks that I saw on one of the "crafty" blogs that I check out every once in a while. And it might also have been the apparent ease and simple ingredients of the two projects I chose. And, last but not least, I think the success of the pumpkin carving still had me flying high.

So here are the Nutter Butter "Ghosts" and the Marshmallow/Fruit Roll-Up "Mummies" that I "threw together". (I've always wanted to say that, even though it's totally not true in this case.)

The ghosts weren't that bad, though I had to re-melt the candy coating once because it was taking me so long to dip and place the cookies that the coating hardened to a non-dippable (I think I just made up a word) state. But you won't believe how difficult it is to get giant marshmallows to stay together using a sliced fruit roll-up! It's a good thing we played the Thursday night football game tonight - I wouldn't have been able to stay awake otherwise! (Go Heels! BIIIIG WIN!!!)

For one day, Ivie, you get to have the "cool" mommy that brings the (kind of) homemade snacks for your party. Enjoy it. It might never happen again!

The Real Deal

Turns out I didn't need to worry about the photographer getting a better shot on picture day than I did.

As I mentioned in the earlier blog, school pictures are the only professional pictures the girls have ever had taken. Ivie has historically done great smiling for the camera. Guess that's what happens when your mommy always has hers hanging from her neck - you get pretty used to it!

Macie wasn't a huge fan at 7 months for her first time around, though. In fact, the only decent shot they got of her was the one with Ivie (that you'll see below). When they tried to get her by herself, she went crazy. So I was hoping that 6 more months of practicing with the camera would lead to a better experience for her this time around...

Apparently it did. Miss Gail said that Macie was ALL SMILES during her session. I'm only including one of the pictures below, but you can tell that she is lovin' it, especially with her big sis by her side...

I'm including below all the school pictures to date. Definitely a fun way to see how much the girls (mostly Iv, since Mac has only had 2 rounds) have changed.

Fall, 2009
(Ivie: 3 1/2 yrs, Macie: 13 mos)

Spring, 2009
(Ivie: 3 yrs, Macie: 7 mos)

Fall, 2008
(Ivie: 2 1/2 yrs)

Spring, 2008
(Ivie: 2 yrs)

Fall, 2007
(Ivie: 18 mos)

Spring, 2007
(Ivie: 1 yr)

Fall, 2006
(Ivie: 7 mos)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Carving Pumpkins

I've officially carved my first pumpkin as an adult! And though I'm sure we did (my mom is very artsy), I don't remember carving them as a kid, either (back to the memory issue and the reason I started this blog in the first place!).

So yesterday I decided to overcome my slight paranoia that I wouldn't have a clue as to what I was doing. I watched a YouTube video by the Pumpkin Lady on how to carve a pumpkin, went to Michael's for the pumpkin-carving kit (so I wouldn't have to use a knife and potentially slice a finger), and got home-bound-with-the-swine-flu Ivie fired up for carving. What better way to spend a day off, right?

This morning we set to work. I say we, because Ivie had all intentions of helping me. She was so excited to put bats and stars (one of the little cut-out kits we came home with yesterday) in the pumpkin.

Her excitement lasted about 2 minutes. The time it took me to cut the top off the pumpkin and pop it out. Then, seeing the goo inside, she exclaimed, "DisGUSTin'!" and made an awful face. In that instant, she became nothing more than a casual observer, and even that lasted only until she got sidetracked by the Wizard of Oz movie that was playing in the living room. So the carving was left entirely to me...

I started with the aforementioned bats and stars on one of our smaller pumpkins. Figured that would be a nice way to ease into the activity (and a less-expensive pumpkin to throw out if I ruined it). But I didn't! So I quickly moved on to the grandaddy of our pumpkins. While perusing the internet for free carving patterns, I came across one of the Tin Man. Since we have a Wizard of Oz theme going this year (with Ivie dressing as Dorothy and Macie as the Scarecrow), it seemed like the logical choice. (And I'm not going to lie - the apparent simplicity of the pattern was a huge factor, as well...)

The best part of the whole experience? Dale walked in the door after his lunch meeting and said, "Is that the Tin Man?". Yea! It's recognizable!

So here's our family of newly-carved (and otherwise-decorated) pumpkins...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Drivin' Miss Ivie...

Somehow Ivie convinced Macie to push her around the house on the little Dora car that we've had since Ivie was one. Their favorite part? Smashing into the walls, stove, cabinets, chairs, or anything else that was in their path. And they were having so much fun that it didn't even cross my mind that they might be causing lasting damage to any of the aforementioned items. A home should be "lived in", right?!?

You'll catch a glimpse of Macie's budding anal tendencies in the video. Check her out as she picks up the baby stroller that Ivie knocks over, as well as when she stops to put on the "crown" that she finds along the way in the kitchen. Looks like she's going to be another of her mother's daughters...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

CHCC Fall Festival (2009)

This weekend was all about annual fall events! Today was the Chapel Hill Country Club Fall Festival, our 3rd. Dale made it home from Atlanta just in time to join us, and Ivie was thrilled to see him walk through the door. I'm pretty sure nothing surpasses the sweetness of a reunion between daddy and daughter after a 5-day hiatus. Neither one couldn't get enough hugs...

We ate lunch before going, so we were able to skip the food stand. But Ivie DID check out the bounce houses, the ponies (she got to ride by herself this year!), the swings, the slide, and the various games that were new to the festival this year. Dale probably wouldn't want it to be in the blog, but I threw the football through the tire on my second try. Dale's at 4 and (still) counting. When we walked away, he was muttering something about me being shorter, so the frame of the booth wasn't in my way? I'm not buying it...

A few extra words about the slide. For some reason, Ivie didn't want to go by herself today. So I volunteered to go with her while Dale hung with Mac and manned the camera. Can I just say that climbing the inflatable stairs to the top of that particular slide was one of the hardest things I've had to do? I guarantee that Ivie couldn't have made it herself. I pretty much had to push her up, while trying not to slip myself. I failed several times, and both of us slid back to the bottom. The girls behind us were getting tired of waiting. It was fairly embarrassing, to say the least. And the whole "staircase" smelled like furniture polish. I think it was a trick by the operators to get some amusement out of their otherwise boring day. But, anyway, we finally made it to the top. And hopefully next time around Ivie won't remember how her mommy almost failed her on the kiddie slide!

Macie's at a tough age for an event like this. She obviously knows she can walk, so she doesn't want to be in her stroller. But when we got her out, she was picking things up off the ground to try to eat or snagging unsuspecting children's shoes from outside the bounce houses. But we were able to appease her with a lollipop, a stuffed bear, and her favorite water bottle (which we think is her favorite because it belongs to Ivie).

All-in-all, we were there a grand total of 57 minutes. Long enough to do everything Ivie wanted, and short enough to avoid total meltdowns by either of the very-tired-and-ready-for-nap girls. Success!

Along with the collage of pictures from today, I'm also going to include a couple that span the last 3 years of the festival to show how Ivie's grown.

Dr. Severt's Halloween Party (2009)

Friday night, one of Dale's Chapel Hill orthodontists, Dr. Tammy Severt, hosted her annual Halloween Party for her patients. Isn't that a great idea for an orthodontist, since typically their patients are tweens/teens that love to have another opportunity to show off their costumes?

I believe we've taken Ivie to this party each year, which would make this Halloween #4. This year, though, Dale was out of town at a Damon seminar in Atlanta, so I ventured to the party alone with the girls. We each had a slice of pizza and some chips, and I managed to refrain from raiding the cookies, brownies, and candy until right before we left. The balloon man made his yearly appearance, which thrilled Ivie (who stood in line for a "pink kitty cat"). There was also very sweet middle schooler there (her name was Amanda) that latched onto the girls and entertained them by showing them how to dance through the dj's light show and attempting (unsuccessfully) to help Ivie hula hoop.

Since it was Friday, after a long week at school for the Mac-ster (who still needs 2 naps a day but only gets 1 at school in the big-girl class), I was not optimistic that we would make it long. But Mac toughed it out, with her only meltdown occurring when we had to take away the balloon that she had been playing with that didn't belong to her. Before I could blink, it was 7:30p and time to head home.

The party whetted Ivie's appetite for all things Halloween by, oh, about 8 gazillion percent. She doesn't yet really understand the concept of "a week", but she's not at all thrilled that she has to go to school for 5 days before it's going to be time to don her Dorothy costume again and take Toto out for some trick-or-treating!

Thanks for letting us come to your great party, Dr. Severt!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Show-and-Tell, Round 37: Seek and Find Books

We shifted away from the Halloween theme yesterday. Thursday night before bed, Ivie and I read these books, so she had them in her bed Friday morning when I coaxed her out by asking her what she wanted to take for Show-and-Tell. She looked around her room, spotted them on the other side of the bed, and said, "These books!". Like they were the best things in the world.

Isn't it great how kids are able to live entirely in the moment and be so genuinely HAPPY with what they have, even if it's something they've owned for quite a while? At least until they're looking at a toy catalog and telling you they want everything in it for Christmas...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Naked Babies

Several times in the past couple of weeks, I've seen pictures of friends' naked babies and television shows where parents of newborns are walking around with their naked babies cuddled up to them. It's all so very sweet. And I'm well aware that "they" say that babies generally love to be naked, and that it's good for their skin to be in the open air every once in a while.

I can honestly say that I don't remember EVER allowing Ivie to be diaper-less for more than the time it took to swap out the wet/poopy one or to get her from the bathroom to her room (while wrapped in a towel). Not even the photographer in me (who is well aware of how adorable naked baby pictures are) could overcome my very strong desire to have control over where Ivie's urine or "BM" (as daycare calls it) might end up. So Ivie didn't wander around naked until she was potty-trained, or at least old enough to know that if she went potty on the floor she was in big trouble.

And, with Macie, I'm headed down that same path. The only time she walks around naked is if she gets loose from me after I pull her out of the bath to dry her off. And when she DOES manage to squirt out of my wet hands, she takes off full-steam ahead, knowing that she's only going to get a few seconds of freedom before I wrap her up and head straight to her changing table.

So I've been thinking that maybe I've deprived both of my girls from that apparently liberating experience. Maybe I'm too Type A and need to take a chill pill and get over it. It's too late for Ivie, but maybe I can still salvage Macie's childhood.

So tonight, before bath, I took the leap. After cleaning Macie's bottom after her nightly poop, I let her walk around in my room while the bathwater ran. Now, it was only going to be a max of 5 minutes that she would be naked, so it's not like I was totally over my fear, but at least I was taking the first step!

And she loved it. She was all smiles, walking around the room, giggling, dragging her and Ivie's towels behind her. I was patting myself on the back for letting my guard down and "living a little".

And then, 3 minutes into her 5-minute frolic, when she was one step on the bedroom side of the bedroom-bathroom door, and, therefore, one step onto the CARPET, as opposed to the TILE, she paused.

And she peed.

There goes any chance you have of walking around naked again, Mac. I mean, I didn't even have time to go get my camera!

Show-and-Tell, Round 36: Ghost Oven Mitt

It's not every day that a kid will think that an oven mitt is cool enough to take to Show-and-Tell.

But if you have one that looks like a ghost, and the kid is in the Halloween spirit, and you show her that the oven mitt doubles as a puppet, you might have a chance...

(And if you're looking closely enough to see the chocolate remnants on her mouth, you caught me. Yes, I do allow my 3 1/2 year-old to have a Cookies-n-Cream pop-tart for breakfast. But only AFTER she finishes her fruit cup. At least on school days.)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

NC State Fair, 2009 Style

Last night was State Fair night. This year, we took a posse, going with the Beales (our annual fair and Friday night pizza partners), the Devers (our neighbors that are pretty much an extension of our family), and the Cherrys (our Tuesday night Moe's/Chick-fil-a friends).

If we thought it was difficult last year keeping up with only 2 mobile kids (Laney and Ivie), we should have fast-forwarded a year to trying to stay together as a group with 8 adults and 6 kids! All-in-all, we were pretty successful, and fun (and food!) was had by all.

Some culinary highlights:

1. We let Ivie have popcorn for dinner. She also later chose to have a slice of pizza. With cotton candy for dessert. Thank goodness the fair only comes around once a year.

2. Dale got his annual turkey leg and candy apple.

3. Macie, who hadn't eaten much all day, pounded an entire hot dog, bun and all. She also seemed intrigued by the cotton candy that Laney put in her mouth.

4. And I finally went with a slice of pizza myself (boring, I know, but I couldn't decide!). But then I forced the entire clan to walk along with me to find the fried candy bar stand (I patiently wait 12 months for a Fried Snickers!). Noone complained, as I witnessed others walking away with Fried Oreos and Fried Reese's Peanut Butter Cups!

Ivie's at the perfect age for the kiddy rides. She was just under the required 42" for most of the rides. Which meant that if Dale wanted to go with her on one, we only had to pay for one rider. But if she wanted to ride by herself or with Laney, she was able to talk the fair workers into letting her go by herself (all she had to do was flash that smile - fair workers aren't really known for being sticklers for the rules!). So we had the best of both worlds!

Macie's only ride was the merry-go-round. She wasn't a huge fan, holding on VERY tightly the entire time. The pictures won't do it justice. The look on Ivie's face as she came down the slide was unforgettable. Click on the collage to make it bigger and get a better look - it's worth it! And another highlight was Ivie being able to milk a cow. I was impressed that she stepped right up and didn't give it another thought - I thought she'd be a little scared. She proved me way wrong.

Many thanks to Daddy for riding the "bigger" rides with Iv, including the fire truck and the swings. Even though he knew it would mean ending up in some pictures, he was willing to take the plunge so that I wouldn't have to get sick. Yes, I even get sick on kiddie rides. It's ridiculous, and it's gotten worse as I've gotten older. I even get sick to my stomach swinging on the swingset in our backyard! So rides are OUT. The merry-go-round with Mac was about the extent of what I could handle, and, even with that, I was glad when it was over...

So another successful night at the fair! And the best part is that I remembered to charge my camera batteries so that I would get more than 4 pictures. I'm definitely getting better at this mommy thing...

School Pictures

Here are the cute dresses the girls wore for school pictures last week. To date, school pictures twice a year are the only "professional" pictures they've ever had taken of them (aside from Emerson's birthday party, that is!).

I'm really hoping the photographer at school was more successful in getting them to cooperate and smile together than I was that morning before we left the house... I guess we'll know on October 27th when the pictures are available for purchase/pick-up. Mom, I hope the shot of Macie below isn't the 5x7 that you end up with for your frame!

Macie's Halloween Dance

Not sure if I've mentioned it before, but Dale's a sucker for the singing toys that Hallmark sells every holiday season. Because of this addiction, we have 2 for Halloween. I must admit, though, that the girls get a BIG kick out of them. I remember Ivie used to dance to them, and now Macie's joined in the act. Here's a video of Macie on Sunday. You'll also see her several times putting her finger(s) in the mouths of the singing tree and toads. That's a little trick she learned from her sister - it feels funny on your fingers when they open and close their mouths while singing!

Also, as you watch the video, please know that we DO generally have pants on our daughters. This video was shot after dinner and the last diaper change of Macie's day, and apparently after Ivie had gone to the bathroom and decided she didn't want to put her pants back on. So we were about to head upstairs for bath. I promise...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

April, 2006

I thought it might be fun to go back in time and share some of my favorite pictures from this three-and-a-half-year whirlwind we've called parenthood. So I'll start today with April of 2006. When we had absolutely NO IDEA what we were doing.

Okay. Who am I fooling? We still don't really have any idea what we're doing. But we've gotten a bit better at disguising our cluelessness.

So where was I? Oh, right. Pictures from Ivie's first month. It's no coincidence that my favorite pictures that first month were taken when Iv was sleeping. When she was awake, she really wasn't letting me chill with my camera...

What have I gotten myself into with these p-a-r-e-n-t-s?!?

Word on the street is that Daddy likes these naps, too...

Role Reversal

Ivie's been a bit resistant at bedtime lately. And since Dale generally puts Ivie to bed (though we've talked recently about alternating nights, now that Macie's on a bottle), he struggles nightly through the brunt of her stash of delay tactics.

Sometimes in the mornings when she wakes up and he goes into her room, he will play "role reversal" with her and they will reenact the previous night's escapades. Such was the case this morning...

Dale (lying on Ivie's bed next to her): Waaaaahhh! I don't wanna go nigh-night! Waaaaaahhh!

Ivie (reassuringly): It's okay, Sweetheart!

Dale: I want some waaaaater!

Ivie (after handing Dale the sippy cup): It's time to go to sleep. I'm going to leave now.

Dale (after pretend-drinking): Nooooooo! Don't leave, Daddy! (Proceeds to flail his arms and legs and kick off his blanket)

Ivie: I'll hold your hand for ONE MINUTE.

Dale (beginning negotiations): No, FIVE minutes!

Ivie: One minute, Ivie. And then I have to go to bed. I'm tired.

(Pause for about 30 seconds of hand-holding...)

Ivie: Good night, Sweetheart.

Dale: Noooooo, Daddy! I didn't say "I love you."

(Followed by more of the same)

I can assure you that this is much funnier in the role reversal game than it is in reality. And the most frustrating part is that Dale and I are clearly being "taken" by a 3.5 year-old.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Halloween Footprint Ghosts

Check out this craft that Ivie's class did at school today. Isn't it so cute in its simplicity? This also explains why her sock was inside-out when she got home...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Ganyard Hill Farm

What a beautiful day for a pumpkin patch! We headed out to Ganyard Hill Farm for the second year in a row, again with the Dever family. Ivie loved the slide, the "corn crib", feeding the moo cows, and, most importantly, the face painting! Macie enjoyed playing with the pumpkins and stealing a ride through the corn maze on Mommy and Daddy's shoulders.

But the pictures will tell the story better than I ever could in words. So I'll share several with you, starting with a few of my very favorites, and followed by a collage (or four) of the rest (which were all too good to choose between!).

There's really not much better than a brisk fall day filled with friends, pumpkins, slides, mazes, and the sweet sound of my girls' laughter.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Scott's Pumpkin Patch

Scott's Pumpkin Patch. Sounds pretty formal, huh? Well, it's not. It's the pumpkin patch that we go to each year to actually BUY pumpkins at the beginning of October. Because that's really all you can do there, aside from taking advantage of a few staged photo opportunities. But you have to be careful when snapping pictures, or you might get a random car in the background. Or a parking lot. Or a neon "Open" sign. Or McDonald's. Because, you see, this "pumpkin patch" is located at the intersection of Fayetteville Road and Hwy 54 (2 very busy roads, for you non-South-Durham natives), on the flip side of the parking lot of a popular strip mall that houses Blockbuster, Hallmark, Kroger, Starbucks, and several eating establishments.

So, in other words, it's not your typical pumpkin patch, where you can mosey around seeing pumpkins for acres on end, go for a tractor ride, tumble down a slide into a haystack, run through a corn maze, and feed the farm animals.

We hope to go to THAT kind of pumpkin patch this weekend (if the weather cooperates). But on Wednesday night, we went to Scott's to get the pumpkins (and $1 scarecrows, it turns out) for our front porch. It was a great night to be outside, and the girls had plenty of fun playing amidst the pumpkins. Just wait until Sunday, girls - the best is yet to come!

Ivie's Random Thoughts (#2)

Zac Brown Band
As you know, Ivie loves "Chicken Fried". And she also recognizes the Zac Brown Band sound, because, prior to this week, every time "Whatever It Is" (LOVE THAT SONG!) came on the radio, she's asked, "Is this Chicken Fried, Mommy?", to which I try to explain to her that it's a different song by the same band.

I think she's gotten it. Monday, when "Whatever It Is" came on, Ivie said, "Mommy, is this the same guy?".

Waiting and Waiting
We've been talking for a couple of weeks about going to get pumpkins at the pumpkin patch. So far, Ivie's been very patient, but it's certainly been at the forefront of her mind.

Wednesday morning, on the way to school, Ivie lamented, "Mommy, I'm T-I-R-E-D." When I asked her why she was tired (as she'd gotten a full 11.5 hours of sleep the previous night), she responded, "I'm tired cuz I've been waiting and waiting to go to the pumpkin patch!".

It must be keeping her awake at night.

P.S. I wrote these two posts on Wednesday morning and was waiting for another "random thought" to add before publishing. But now that the week is almost over and I don't have another one, I'm going to go ahead and post. Mostly because we went on Wednesday evening to the first, of hopefully two, pumpkin patches for the year, so the "Waiting and Waiting" story above is "old news" - Ivie's had a great night's sleep the last two nights now that her pumpkins are on the front porch!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Apt Descriptor

If you've ever had a conversation with Dale about Ivie, chances are you've heard him refer to her as "a mess" or "a trip", with the latter being his favorite.

Monday night, after a dinner out with friends and before heading upstairs for bath (it was Ivie-only bath night), Ivie was thirsty. And it just so happened that we had an Aquafina mini-water bottle in the fridge. So Dale gave it to Ivie, who was thrilled that it was "her size". She brought it upstairs with her, took a few swigs, sat it on the bathroom counter, and ultimately lost interest in favor of playing in the tub.

I had closed Macie's door to put her to bed, so I'm not sure how it started, but as soon as she got out of the tub, Ivie erupted into a MAJOR meltdown (it didn't help that it was 8:45p by this point - WAY past her normal bedtime). Sobbing uncontrollably and asking for her mommy, over and over. I heard Dale trying to calm her down. Incessantly. Unsuccessfully. Finally, after several minutes, Ivie came into Macie's room, still sobbing. Peering over her head, I saw Dale sitting on the ottoman in her room, with an only slightly discernible grin on his face, as Ivie walked over to me and wailed, "Mommy, Daddy drank my waaaaaterrrrr!!!". Apparently Dale had (erroneously, it turns out) assumed that Ivie had forgotten about the water bottle and had finished it off himself. The nerve of him!!!

It took several minutes to get her to catch her breath and stop weeping before she finally agreed to let Dale read books and put her to bed.

But she didn't entirely forgive him. The next night (Tuesday) after bath, while they snuggled before bed, Ivie looked at Dale and simply said, "Last night, you drank my water. You need to say you're sorry." Dale stifled a laugh and apologized. For the umpteenth time.

THEN, last night (Wednesday), we were waiting outside Rudino's for some friends to join us for dinner and pumpkin patching (more on that soon). While waiting, Dale was messing around with Ivie and, at one point, quickly lifted her up in the air and over his head, essentially flipping her over. We're still not sure if her stomach dropped or if Dale squeezed her stomach/ribs too hard, but Ivie began crying, saying that Daddy had hurt her belly.

So, after bath again (which is when Ivie apparently does her formal recapping of the day's events), Ivie said to Dale, "Daddy, you scared me today." Not sure what she was talking about, Dale asked for more details. Ivie said, "Today, when we were waiting for Will to go to the restaurant [not at all pronounced correctly, but he knew what she was talking about]. You need to say you're sorry."

Dale laughed (unable to suppress it this time) and told Ivie he was sorry.

And you know how Ivie responded? She looked up at him and said, off-handedly, "Daddy, I'm a trip."

Iv, you took the words right out of Daddy's mouth...

Sunday, October 4, 2009


I thought it was a fluke the first time. After the girls had finished their lunch today, I was sitting at the kitchen table eating my own lunch, and I felt something tapping me on the back. When I turned around, Macie was standing there, holding the small plastic container of marshmallows that I keep in the pantry (to add to the diaper bag when we're out-and-about and need to have snacks packed for the girls).

I've mentioned before how much Macie enjoys marshmallows. So I just laughed today, thinking that she must have just been playing in the pantry (which is typical for both girls), happened upon the container, and randomly came over to visit me with it in her hand. There was no way that she was actually trying to tell me that she wanted marshmallows, right? Even when I laughed and said, "Mac, do you want some marshmallows?" and she very clearly nodded her head (a new skill she's developing these days). Even then, it had to be a fluke.

So after dinner tonight, I was sitting at the table checking email. Ivie was watching television (Dora at 7p!) and Mac was wandering around as usual. Next thing I knew, I felt the now-familiar tapping on my leg. I looked down, and, you guessed it. Macie had the marshmallow container back in hand, and she had an expectant look on her face.

Guess it's NOT a fluke. She's growing up, and learning where the dessert is kept. SMART GIRL.

And, as I literally get ready to hit "Publish Post" on my laptop for this story, she walks up to me with the container of "lil' crunchies" in her hand and taps it on my leg. I about fall off my seat laughing. The marshmallows were gone, so she had to move on to something else. NICE, Macie.

The Path Home

Last night, Dale and I went to the U2 concert at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh (despite Dale having sworn previously that he would never again enter that facility).

Colleen came over to stay with the girls. Ivie goes back and forth these days between not caring when we leave (sad!) and desperately not wanting us to walk out the door (even more sad!). Last night, it was the latter.

So as I held her before leaving, I tried to convince her of all the fun she would have with Colleen. They could go outside after dinner, I said, and blow bubbles, and write with chalk on the driveway. In an attempt to distract her, I asked Ivie if she would please draw me a purple picture with her chalk so that I could see it when I got home after she'd gone to bed. She said she would, and loosened up her hold on my neck enough that I could hand her off to cuddle with Colleen as we drove away.

The concert was wonderful, but had the worst traffic I'd ever witnessed, I think - it took us an hour and 45 minutes to drive 5 miles, park, and walk to the stadium! When we got home, Colleen said that they had gone for a short walk up the road. And that Ivie had taken her purple chalk along with her and, on the way home, had been adamant about drawing a purple dashed line so that "Mommy could find her way home".

It was too dark for me to check it out last night, but I had to smile at what I saw this morning when I went outside for my morning run.

It's hard to tell from the picture, but the chalk line goes all the way up to the intersection on the right. Thanks for showing us the way home, Iv.

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Macie is in the "stacking" phase. I don't remember Ivie going through this phase - she never really got into the stacking toys much. But Macie is all about it. Anything stack-able, gets stacked. The cups in the kitchen cabinet, the tupperware, and, as you can see, the field markers at Ivie's first soccer game this morning. At least it kept her from running onto the field. Most of the time.

Show-and-Tell, Round 35: Soccer Ball

I obviously didn't learn my lesson from Ivie's less-than-stellar t-ball experience this summer, since I signed her up for soccer this fall! And probably none of you will be surprised that, through the 2 practices and first game, she participates in soccer about as much as she did in t-ball. She doesn't often remember that she's not supposed to use her hands, preferring to just bend over and pick up the ball if someone is threatening to get it away from her. And you have to physically pick her up and bring her back to the field after water break, or she'll just stay by the water cooler and help herself to unlimited refills in her sno-cone cup.

In an attempt to encourage participation and give her something with which to practice, Dale made a Target run to pick up a PINK soccer ball. She loves it, and it went to Show-and-Tell with her yesterday.

This morning at her first game, she showed a few signs of enjoyment. And even managed to take a few uninterrupted "dribbles" (that sounds funny to my basketball mind) during the game before kicking the ball too far and into the awaiting feet of the other kids.

So we'll see how this soccer thing works out. To let you in on a secret, Dale and I won't be disappointed if she ends up not being a big fan. I'm personally counting down the year(s) until she's old enough to play in the basketball leagues...