Sunday, November 30, 2008

Shout Out Sunday

I'm borrowing title from my sister, Candace who seems to be giving "Shout Outs" every Sunday. So, here's mine. My shout out today goes to brother Jonny and future sister-in-law Amber. I had a great partial week/weekend with them. On Wednesday Amber was driving back to Shreveport from Dallas and we met in Canton for fantastic lunch/conversation and for me to pass off a house key to her. They had a shower for a friend in Pearland (or Pearl-and as they called it) on Saturday. So, they stayed at our house Friday and Saturday nights. We met them at home last night for some Gringo's food. They were able to witness our family Sunday in all our glory. Let me just say that it was a bit chaotic--adjusting to life back at home, no schedule for a week, re-arranging the house and putting up Christmas decorations and the tree. We ended up finding a babysitter for the evening and took them to our favorite sushi place, Sage 400. Good times.

I truly love Amber and I am so pleased she will be a part of my family and I get to have another sister! He chose well. I am so happy for Jonny, too. He seems so happy and in a good place. We love you guys!

Jonny gets an additional shout out. He has agreed to illustrate the book that I have written with Mom's ideas. I have basically finished the text and we discussed how many illustrations we would need and what ideas we had for settings and caracitures. Way excited about this project! It's going to be great! More to come soon!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Photo Story Friday

I am so thankful for my in-laws. They make holidays so much fun. From card games to Badmitton to trips to the local Gator Farm--it doesn't matter what we are doing I emjoy being around them. Here are a few pics of our Thanksgiving together.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Crazy Uncle Skip

I love my brother-in-law, Skip. He has such an interesting sense of humor and I am always laughing with him. For example, he always wanted to teach his kids the wrong animals sounds, like a dog meows, etc. He really is great with kids though. I have watched him with his own children for the past 10 years and now I get to watch him with my own kids. If only I had more of the silliness he has.

Video #2-Yesterday, Skip cornered Cavett and got him to say the phrase, "Yo, you want a piece of this?" It was hilarious. The Heizers had gone to the new Gator Farm (which we hope to visit tomorrow) and bought a T-shirt for Cavett. This was the phrase on the T-shirt with the Gator. Sorry it's sideways.

Video #1-Skip also taught Cavett to chase the cows in the field. It was quite empowering for Cavett to have the entire herd fleeing from him.

Literacy Thursday

Welcome to week 3 of Literacy Thursday. Since it is Thanksgiving I decided to share one of our favorite betime/prayer books--Good Night God by Holly Bea. What is most perfect about it at this time is that the illustrations depict the wonderful sights of autumn.

The book has sweet illustrations of a bowl-cut, blond haired little boy walking through the park with his Dad. He says good night in rhyme to all things he sees on the walk and to things once he gets home. It sweetly ends by thanking God and telling Him good night.

Enjoy this one with your little one as you thank God for all that He has blessed you with this year and throughout your life. Happy Thanksgiving!

Hosted by: Jennifer at if you're happy and you know it

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

This was the scene as our cousins were leaving this past weekend.

Monday, November 24, 2008

My Definition of Hell on Earth

We spent the morning at the auto dealership getting our first check-up and oil change for the Jetta. Total time spent there--an hour and a half. it was the longest hour and a half of my life. The waiting room was full and there wasn't anything other than a TV with Regis and Kelly playing. Cavett wasn't a problem; he sat in the hallway and watched the movie Cars. Kendrick on the other hand wasn't interested in sitting still. I brought a car and a couple of books, but I would have had to have a Santa size sack full of toys to entertain him. We ran up and down hallways, played with a balloon, and another saleman gave us a ball to play with. Kendrick ended up with one head bump by running into a doorway and I got a fat lip from his thrashing. Had I been home, this one would have gotten a few tears.

5,000 more miles and we get to repeat it again. Hooray.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sibling Time

This past weekend, the Chaneys found their way to Sugar Land. We always love it when they come. Typically, there is much craziness, laughter, and fun. It's all about the kids. They run amuck and play with each other quite well. Someone is usually sick. This weekend was no different--including the sickness (don't ask, you DON'T want to know). The kids got to make their own pizzas, go to the Stomping Grounds and Zeke got to play with tons of boy toys. He was in heaven. Stephen even made Anna Grace's front tooth a little prettier while the boys feed the ducks.

However, as pictures will tell, the best part was the time the adults got to spend together. I found that I took very few pictures of kids. They didn't care. They still had a blast regardless. I got to work out with Candace in the morning, and later in the afternoon we left the kids napping with the Daddies and we went to get a pedicure and shopped at ATL. That evening we had Esther babysit while the adults had dinner at Churrasco's and hung out at some "diverse" local venues (a wine bar and then a red-neck outdoor-bonfire making out back-kinda bar!) We had good conversation and more laughs that the kids had.

It warms my heart to have such a wonderful relationship with my sister. It hasn't been so in the past, but as we have gotten older and had kids we have been able to see each other's points of view and embrace and celebrate our differences. I love you, Candina and I thank God that He has placed you so near and dear to me in my life. Now, if only you were physically closer.

P.S.- She totally captured Kendrick's heart. He loves her. Cuddled with her constantly and wanted her to hold him. It must be the "second" bond.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Play Yard

This afternoon, long about 4 o'clock we headed to the front yard to play. I promised Cavett that he could play with our neighbor Jeffery and the TV box we just aquired. (Yes, we are stimulating the economy, but when stores are closing and giving away merchandise you just can't help it). Within 20 minutes there were 12 kids in our yard. About an hour later, it was 16! It was great fun watching them and their imaginations with the box. Eventually, a couple of other moms joined us.

However, once Cavett's friend Jackson arrived on his bike, Cavett decided that was all he wanted to do and for the next 45 minutes he rode up and down the street. We mangaged to stay out until it got too dark to see and the mosquitos started swarming.

This is why we live in the 'burbs. Totally worth it.

Literacy Thursdays

Todays pick is Inch by Inch written by Leo Lionni. You may know another one of his books, Swimmy, but Inch by Inch caught my attention today. This author/illustrator reminds me of Eric Carle but most of Leo's have a better story line.

This tale begins with a hungry robin who sees the inch worm and wants to gobble him up. But the inch worm claims usefulness and pleads his case showing him that the robin's tail is 5 inches long. The robin then takes him to other birds who would like to be measured--the flamingo's neck, the toucan's beak, the heron's legs, the pheasant's tail and the whole hummingbird. Finally, the inch worm meets the nightingale who would like her song measured. The inch worm says he will "try" but actually sneaks off. The musician in me would like to change the story and have the inch worm actually measure the measures of the nightengale's song, but I guess that is easier said than done in a picture book.

Cavett and I re-read this story a couple of nights ago as a bed time story. Now that he is getting older, I am finding new ways to discuss the events. He is really into the measuring tape. Some days he goes around the house and just "pretends" to measure everything. (He's 38 1/2" right now by the way.) So, the other night we actually took his fingers and measured the inch worm and used that distance and measured each of the birds parts for ourselves. Cavett then compared each of the measurements to see where on the spectrum of length each bird belonged. It's a great math lesson.

I also found a really cool website featuring other works for Lionni and sample lessons in all subjects for each book. Maybe next week when Cavett is out of school we will try the Earthworm Terrarium! There are also some interesting facts on the site about earthworms. For instance, did you know that there are over a million earthworms in just one acre of soil. Together, these worms can eat 10 tons of leaves, stems, and dead roots a year, and turn over 40 tons of soil. And, the largest earthworm ever found in the world measured in at 22 feet from its nose to the tip of its tail, and it was found in South Africa!

Hosted by Jennifer:

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Stomping Grounds

Today we had a playmate with our friends, Teague and Jackson. We headed to the Stomping Grounds to play for the morning. This is a new place in Sugar Land located next to Michael's on Hwy. 59. It is basically coffee/cafe meets indoor playground. My kids loved it!

We arrived just before 10 and they both played hard until 12. There are 2 different play areas--one for 2 and under and then a gigantic one for over 2. Kendrick had his fill of the little play area after about 20 minutes. Then he was off the find the big boys. Every now and then he ventured back to the smaller area. Cavett was in hog-heaven and just couldn't get enough. In the big area there are multiple slides, a river/swamp complete with stumps and an alligator, tubes, and enclosed netted areas with huge exercise balls that just barely fit in the space.

We ended up staying for lunch as well. They have several paninis and salads as well as a well stocked snack service and meals for kids. The only problem with it was that it was a la cart. Being new, the place is very clean and nice. There are 5 birthday party rooms available.

Here's the price low down. Ages 1-2=$4.25, Ages 3 and up=$7.75. To go and play every now and then, I found it reasonable. To add food or even drinks to that price it was a bit much, especially how hard these kids are playing. It would be nice to have a water fountain rather than shell out $1.75 for a bottle of water. There are 2 month memberships available. It basically works out that if you go once a week you break even. Otherwise pay as you go.

My overall take--it's a great place, especially for cold or rainy days. We will probably return this weekend when our cousins are here.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Language Development

I know I have been blogging about Cavett quite a bit lately, so here is an update on Kendrick. Today Kendrick gave me at least 2 instances where he really was understanding language.

After his short morning nap we read a few books. One of which was Truck by Donald Crews. It has no words. Since I have narrated this book umpteen times, I began getting more creative and finding more things to talk about rather than my same old schpiel. When we got to the page with the spaghetti bowl of lanes, I asked him if he could find the truck (not just any truck, the main character truck). I really didn't think he would be able to. It is kind of like a "Where's Waldo?" page. He didn't hesitate and found it right away.

At lunch I asked him if he was ready to eat. He did the "eat" sign and walked over to the pantry. I said, "Would you like some chicken?" and he walked over the the refridgerator/freezer and started pulling on them with all his might.

It is so awesome when they really start grasping our language. I look forward to more days with more words.
Pictured with Daddy from Cavett's last soccer game on Saturday night. It was soooo cold!