Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Sad Day For Sam's Mom

Well,then. It's been a while since I posted multiple pictures and I forgot the rules of selecting them in opposite order of how you want them. So, the bottom pic is first in chronological order.

Yesterday was a big day for Sam. It was his very last day of being a preschooler. Which, and this is the sad part for the mom, means he's a Kindergartner.

Sam's first day of preschool, and the following weeks, were rough for my little man. This is a little boy who never fully realized Nursery and the fun that could be had there. He much preferred the company of his parents and only started to go, without the teachers bringing me a tantrum throwing child, when he turned 3. He got 6 months of Nursery time. He started preschool just 3 months after he turned three, which meant separation anxiety was in full throttle and I had a broken heart leaving a sobbing child to Miss Patti's fabulous care. After a few weeks of this, it got better, but he still needed 3 hugs and three kisses before I could go and then he'd run to the window to watch me and make sure I signed "I love you" to him.

What a difference a year makes. this year, he could care less for my proximity to him. He runs from the car to the door of preschool, sometimes without so much as a "Bye, Mom!", or "Love ya, Mom!" or "I need a 3 hugs and 3 kisses." He doesn't watch for me to sign "I love you" to him. He's far to busy with his friends and Miss Patti...or kissing the "prettiest girl in class", Tess. Yeah, that's right. I'm already freaking out about later years.

Sam and Miss Patti on Cowboy day, 2009

You know what I'll miss the most? The time I have with him in the car, just after preschool. The boy cracks me up with his craziness anyways, but sometimes, the things he'd tell me about what he learned kept me smiling ALL day long.

First day of school, 2009...yep, he's my handsomest Sam

One day, Sam got in the car and I asked him what he learned about. "Giraffes" was his reply. "Oh, cool. What do they do?", I asked. His response, and it really shows you what he's most interested in, "they go down, bend down to get a drink of water. And the an alligator CHOMPS OFF HIS NECK!" So, of all the wonderful things Miss Patti told him about giraffes, THIS is what he gets from it. What a boy!
Drawing with an orange marker...not surprising

I also love the songs he sings. Although, I can never let him know I'm listening. Just after his first program, for the three year old class, Miss Patti was SO happy that he sang. He never sings at rug time, she told me. Well, he sings all day long at home! A few weeks ago, he was sitting at the table eating lunch. He looked up at me and said, "If you bet your bottom dollar, there will be sun." And then when back to eating. "Annie" songs are always good to learn.

Cowboy Day
They learned a song about lying in class a while back. It's one of my favorite songs to tease him about. One day, while we were riding in the car with the whole family, Aaron was telling me about the side effects of an herbal pill he took. His face was red and hot, he was felt like his head was going to explode, those sorts of wonderful things. Sam asked from the back seat "Did you tell a lie, Dad?" Because in the song it says "Your face gets hot and turns bright red, da duh. And your heart will start to thump in your throat will get a lump."
First day of preschool, 2008

I love Miss Patti. She loves the kids in her classes. One day, I won't have any more little kids to send to her class. That will be a sad day for me. That day is not here yet. Emerson starts in the Fall!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

I'm Back...

I know, I know. You missed me like mad! Truth be told, I missed me, too! For now, this post, the news is: I am in my own space. I don't feel like I'm in anyone's way, in anyone's hair, or on anyone's nerves...besides, of course, my children...but it's my job to be on their nerves, right? I do love and adore my kids...more than I have in a little over a year...yep, it feels good to like my family and not feel like I have to micro manage their every move to keep them outta trouble.

I'll write more soon...

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

ORANGE you glad we have Sam?

What a bad mommy! It's been over a week since Sam's birthday and I haven't blogged. Well, he'll have middle child syndrome for sure! Sam loves two things more than anything else in the world right now: balloons and the color orange. So we had lots of balloons around and, of course, lots of orange! I tried to think of a bunch of orange foods and came up with a few that went well with the only things Sam wanted for his dinner (hot dogs and watermelon). We even tried to wear orange.

Here's just a few pictures from the party. I think the kids had fun. There was a treasure hunt that ended in the attic.

Can I just say I think my boy is handsome? Some poor girl out there will be blinded by his dimples and dark eyes and not know what a troll he can be until it's too late!

Okay, here goes. It's the quintessential reason's I love Sam...
S-Smile. He knows when to use it to his best advantage.
A-Adventurous. Likes to think he's bigger than he is. It's scary.
M-Momma's boy. He'll grow out of it one day. But I'll take the cuddles now.
U-Unpredictable. Just when I think I know what he's gonna do next....
E-Energy. He has so much! I wish I could harness it to power the earth!
L-Laugh. His laugh is SO cute. It makes me laugh.
On a side note, had I blogged this earlier, I wouldn't be able to tell you these cute stories! Sam was being naughty. I asked him if he wanted me to whack his seat 3 times..."I four years old. I get four whacks!" And then, the other day, Austin was trying to get him to eat, "Just take one bite?" "No, I 4 years old. I eat 4 bites of potatoes!" He just doesn't get it! I love him!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

To Sea World We Go!

Every time I come here I think I need to become a person that swims with Shamu. I guess Sea World has it's own magic. Not quite like Disneyland magic. More of a "Look what I could become" magic. Does that make sense?

Some of Olive's favorite things: The dolphins. She was amazed at them. Watching them swim, being so close. She is a nature/animal lover. She was SO brave and rode "Atlantis" with me. She screamed in terror and this ride, too, made her "tweasy".

Sam's faves: It was Brinnley. Hands down. (see upper left hand picture) Didn't matter what we were watching, as long as Brinnley was by him or, in some cases, holding hands as we walked. Brinnley is his favorite...and Parker, too.

Emmers loved the Sesame Street area. She went on the Elmo ride with Fun Aunt Jen. She sat and watched things well enough. The Sesame Street 4 D thing was probably the thing that got the most response from her..."Oh, wook at dat!"

Here's just a few fun Sea World moments. Petting the creepy looking Bat Rays, hanging with Nannie, chillin' with the cousins....good times!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Back to the Vacay

On Wednesday night we drove to San Diego. The next morning we had another surprise for the kids....COUSINS! And Aunts, Uncles, and Grandparents...

A few of my sisters and their families had planned this portion of the trip and called to see if we wanted in. We planned Disneyland around this. Starting in the upper left hand corner: Jill, Justin (holding TJ-ers), Sadie, Megan, and Parker. Next pic: Marianne and Ferdie's family: Josh, Maizie, Mollie, Kenz. Center: Look familiar? Bottom left: Lindy and her kids: Bronco, Brady, Brinnley, and Taylor. Her husband, Jaret, joined us the next day. Last pic: My dad, mom, Haley, and Jen.

We met at their hotel for some breakfast and then headed to Cabrillo National Monument. The tide pools were so cool! Parker held a sea slug so Olivia could pet him. The kids had a great time here. We did lose Sam. He wandered off. In a place where the ocean and rocks and cliffs collide, my mommy heart was sick. I found him up on the cliff standing back in a patch of flowers. A man approached me when he knew I was the mom and told me Sam was wandering close to the edge. He could tell he was lost so he had him go stand in a high place where his parents could easily spot him. Thank heavens for nice strangers!

After some time in the tide pools, we headed to see the light house. It was pretty cool. One side looked out over a Naval base {I think}. Anywho...there was a submarine coming up out of the water. It was cool to see. The view was amazing!

Then off to Mission Beach. The kids had no apprehension here. Straight into the water they ran. We buried Olivia and Meg in the sand and made them mermaids. Olivia still enjoyed "basking in the sun"...

This boy. I LOVE the middle picture of him. He had fun building sand mountains and cars with his dad.

Emerson mostly slept. She woke up just as we were leaving the beach and just in time for one "awake" picture.

A few random/fun pics: Jen connecting with her inner self on the beach, Aaron and me, the grand sand sea turtle, and a pic of Aaron and kids.

Then it was to the hotel for dinner. Lindy and Jill were in charge this night! After a day in the ocean a nice warm home cooked meal was so nice!

Monday, May 25, 2009


For the sake of Memorial Day....

Grandfather Cowan: I don't remember a whole lot about him. He died when I was really young. I remember the hospital bed in the front room. By the big window in the back of the living room. I remember singing "I am a Child of God" with all of the grandkids at his funeral. I remember thinking, when we sang the part about "rich blessings are in store", that it was like a can of Campell's soup...only Blessings soup. I think of him when I drive past farm land.

Grandpa Hurst: "Ride a cock horsey to Bambury Cross, to see a fine lady upon a fine horse. Rings on her fingers and bells on her toes, she will hear music where ever she goes! YEE-HAH!!" He used to chant that rhyme while giving us a ride on his foot (crossed over his knee so it would swing) then, at the end he would boost us on to his lap and generally give us a good ol' whisker rub. I remember his garden. I remember his fun wooden toys he built. I remember his marigold garden. I celebrate him with a bowl of ice cream.

Grandma Hurst: She always had a bag of M&M's in her purse. They tasted like she smelled. So yummy. I wish I could go buy a bag of Grandma Hurst flavored M&M's. She saved all her costume jewelry for the girls to dress up in. There was always a yellow cake with chocolate frosting on her counter. I remember sleeping over with her after Grandpa died (mostly on the weekends so my older brother, Jared, could have a break). I did puzzles with her and played Solitare to pass the time. She was watching me play Solitare one time. I had no moves so I pulled a card from somewhere I shouldn't have...."I saw that", she said. I can't cheat at Solitare to this day. I celebrate her with a bucket of KFC.

Grandmother Cowan: She was VERY proper. Always called me "Michelle". Never answered to "Grandma". Only to "Grandmother". Frozen government cheese. Toast (home made bread) with honey so old it was black. Ice cream cones. She was a Depression baby...we saved tin foil and used baggies and made due with what we had. We used to dance around in her living room to an old church record. She pulled pans out of the a 350 degree oven...with NO hot pads. Bare handed. She used to recite "Little Black Sambo" to us. I wish I had a recording of her telling the story. I loved the voices she used. She used to walk in the back door to a room FULL of people and yell, "Is anybody home?" One time, we all yelled back "NO!" From then on it was "Is anybody happy?" I can't eat toast with honey with out remebering her.

That's the order in which they passed away. I miss them terribly as I type this. It's been a while since I remebered back to the things they did to make me smile.

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Big D

We spent Tuesday and Wednesday in Disneyland and California Adventure. Our biggest mistake was taking the kids on the Snow White ride first. Sam was terrified. Emerson screamed, and Olivia buried her head in my side. Sam asked to go home about every 5 minutes after that. We had a hard time convincing him to go on any other rides! I think, for the most part, Olivia and I had a great time, Emerson and Aaron tolerated it, and Sam mostly hated it...until we met the Princesses...

So, Sam was a bit skeptical of the big costumed characters. He really didn't want to get too close to any of them. The princesses and fairies were a different story! He liked the pretty ones! In the end, Sam really did enjoy a few things: the Mickey Mouse shaped ice cream, the popcorn bucket, the water fountains around the park, the big wet ball in the middle of Tomorrowland, and even a couple rides--Toy Story Mania and Small World!

Olivia was a bundle of excitement from the time we told her where we were going! She is an excellent map reader and was the first to start investigating the map to see where we needed to go next. She was VERY brave and rode Splash Mountain with me. Initially when we got off the ride she said it was "AWE.SOME!" Then she changed her mind and said it made her "Tweasy". Aaron was a champ and stood in line for the family so Olivia could meet the princesses. Dads rock.

Emerson mainly rode around in the stroller looking for a new creative way to get out. And when we did let her out of the stroller, she was very vigilant about staying close, but not so close that we could grab her to put her back in! She warmed up to the characters as the days went on. She waved at them and gave them high 5's when she could. Emerson, like her mom, really enjoyed the churros. I think Small World was one of the rides she liked best.

Here are a few of our "Character Greeting" pictures. I liked Eeyore the best. He looked so cuddly! Tigger still bugs me. I'm hoping it was confussion on his part. There were 2 little girls ahead of in line, one of the girls got her little book signed and a picture. When the second little girl went to hand him her book he ushered her out. The mom consoled her heart broken daughter and then cut back in and made him sign her book. All the moms around said it was the right thing to do.

Here's just a few random pictures of fun things. I love the one of Aaron and Emerson sleeping on the bench! I wish you could see the expression on Sam's face in the one where he's on Aaron's shoulders...SO happy to be there! Aaron and the kids had a great time seeking out the penny squishing machines. Sam still likes looking at his "ovals". Aaron has consented to go again...this time being very sure to take breaks during the day...I'm counting down the days!

Here's a slide show if you have time!