Monday, March 31, 2008

Dylan's New Toy

"Dylan" got a new toy, but as you can see, the neighborhood gang of 2nd - 6th grade boys took it over pretty quickly. I couldn't believe how much time these boys spent engaged with a toddler's sand and water table! Hopefully Dylan felt like King of the Sand Pile as owner of the "it" toy today. What a soiree! Hopefully the gecko they recruited to captain the boat and dump truck survive the day, too.
The reason I got the toy was because I need to keep Dylan working with his hands as much as possible. He is in occupational therapy two days a week for a number of things that include muscle tone. Dylan is very resistant to playing with most manipulative toys. All he desires to do is sit on the computer or play station ALL day long (we don't have the playstation working anymore). He does like pretend play and strangely legos! You would think those would have developed his fine motor skills, but they say he uses his body too much to push them together (and I now notice he does actually use a lot of pre-built things instead of building it himself.) He also likes to play with cars and pretend games, which is great, but he needs to work on fine and gross motor skills a lot more. Here is a pic of Dylan in the midst of a fun therapy session as he swings around in his sailboat and tries to put different colored turtles on the with the color spots on the floors

Dylan is also in speech therapy so a huge hunk of my week is going to the appointments, but I would rather put the work in now while he is a little guy and hope it helps him in school and activities later. It would hurt me to look back and wish we did more and simply hope for the best. Fortunately, I really love the place we go and now just need to find the time at home to encourage him and play with his cool toys!


I dropped Jonathan off at football practice and left the other kids with Jason so I could run some errands. I stopped by the library to grab some books -- generally it is one of my least favorite places to visit with young children. Lyvia will demand to hold a book I plan to check out then lose it, they push the books back and knock the ones on the other side off, grab books off the shelf and of course small noises are always amplified. Generally a freak out or two is also tossed in just to make sure I'm completely frazzled.
It was SOOO refreshing to wander isles without the stress of child induced mishaps. I can't remember the last time I visited a library without a child in tow -- at least four years but probably more. Wandering the line of books to see what reading options are out there is extremely enjoyable to me -- especially the travel section. I was in a rush to get all my errands accomplished so I had to leave after my quick visit, but I think I will dedicate one day in the Fall, after Lyvi and Dylan are BOTH in preschool, to the shelves of a library.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter! I've had some Easter nightmares in past years so I am happy to report that this year we had a relatively flawless year! Everyone had clothes to wear (and seemed genuinely pleased with them), eggs to hunt, a few goodies in their basket, best behavior at church and the icing on the cake was a fabulous Easter brunch.
One year I showed the kids what clothes I had picked out for them to wear and was a benevolent enough mother to let them give me feedback. Imagine my surprise Sunday morning when there was a revolt to end all revolts! It was so bad I won't rehash the grizzly details (I'm open to a mini-seris deal), but the following year the festivities were put on hold until everyone got dressed and proved that they weren't bordering on a maniacal meltdown. I guess you have to have the bad years to truly appreciate the good ones.

Last year must have been a bit of blur because I didn't have a single picture of Lyvia. Well, this year she happily toddled into the midst of all the day's egg hunts and was proudly dressed to the nines. Get that girl some frilly socks and you have made her day!

After church (where both littles did a fabulous job of going to the nursery -- another Easter miracle), we went with friends to a beautiful brunch down in Austin. They had discovered this nice relatively inexpensive brunch many years ago and about four or five years ago we started going with them. Two years ago we showed up as usual, but the simple breakfast fare had transformed into a lavish buffet with all the trimmings. What a gorgeous turn of events, but the price was jacked up a shocking 200-300%!!!
We did enjoy ourselves though and were so fortunate to go again this year with our friends. This time we were prepared for the sticker shock. And the food was tasty -- oh so tasty! Now we've sunk into a buffet induced coma.
This is Lyvia's "grin". She is so silly and always working to get a laugh out of someone. She was absolutely precious watching the "real" Easter bunny who was walking around. I wish I got a picture of her non-stop staring and waving, but I was too focused on the shrimp and oyster bar. Nothing better than a day of making happy memories!

Easter happens every day. Easter happens each time those who mourn rise up again to honor those they've lost by loving life more dearly. Easter happens every time we stand in solidarity with those who've lost all hope and say, "Hold on, we're at your side." And Easter happens every time, in spite of woe and death, in spite of the multitude of ways we've turned away, in spite of our failures and denials, we say "yes" to life." -- Rob Ellers Isaac

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Hannah Montana!!!

Wow do I have connections! My friend in Houston scored four tickets to see the Best of Both Worlds tour ala Hannah Montana (hottest ticket around -- if you don't know who she is, then this coup is lost on you.)

Actually, it was a part of the Houston Rodeo and I just couldn't understand how that could make for a "real" concert so my expectations weren't all that high. She also kept telling me how high our seats were so I thought we would need binoculars to see what was going on.

Well, being the clever mothers that we are, we put clues all around the house and the girls had to go from clue to clue to find out what we were doing that day (we didn't tell them beforehand.) At the end were matching Hannah Montana shirts. Here is the first thing they did after finding out...

They ran to fix their hair! Lindsay was actually just following the leader and I had to slow her down to explain that we were going to see her live and not the 3D movie again.

Although I had low expectations, I loved the show! I was blown away by the size of the astrodome. We arrived early and enjoyed watching the rodeo. Lindsay enjoyed the bucking broncos the most. After it completed, they quickly rolled out everything for the concert including a stage that rotated 360 degrees.

Before all that crazy girl fun we checked out the Houston Fair and it blows the Austin fair out of the water. One reason we didn't go to Colorado for Spring Break was because of this show -- it was a GREAT trade off! Thanks, Krissy for including us!!!

Houston Fair and Rodeo

We did all the good fair things rode carnival rides, ate fried food and cotton candy, smelled poo from every imaginable farm animal, etc. They did have a very cool birthing center -- I could have done without the placenta hanging out the back end of a cow and the diagram of how a chicken is processed (it was located above a pen of oblivious chicks.) That's the reality of our circle of life and food chain though.

I'm so glad a friend told me I had to eat a fried snickers bar for her -- the Austin Fair doesn't even have those, if you can imagine. How does it call itself a fair? I couldn't do the fried twinkie,b ut the fried snickers bar was actually REALLY good (pic to be added later) and something new to me! I'm always looking for a new adventure so thanks to Lesli for that idea.

Lindsay was mighty scared about getting on my all time childhood favorite carnival ride. How wonderful it is when our kids dig deep inside and find bravery to experience these things in spite of their fears. Sad that it can be a disappointment for us when we just KNOW they would like if they tried it. Well, fortunately she did try it and loved it.

We also saw one of the munchkins from the Wizard of Oz eat fire. Sideshows always leave me a bit sad, but I hope the group has some fun on the road.

Last, but not least here are our munchkins -- filled almost to the brim with every sugar ladened or processed food item a carnival offers -- hanging out at the Miley's World party.

Sunday, March 02, 2008


I LOVE this picture Jason's dad painted. He paints the most gorgeous road runners. It is in a gallery in Ft. Worth and available for purchase.
More of his work can be seen at