Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Today we...

We visited some friends who had lots of extra tomatoes. We picked a few bucketfuls to make salsa with.

Then we went inside to chat. Ainsley, who's always been a bit on the reserved side, has really taken to Don. She climbed up on his lap and asked him to tell her a story.

He took advantage of the moment and read them a book called Snake Stew. Several times.

Renee was holding Grayson the whole time. I took advantage of the moment. This wasn't an option with my girls at the same age. They were, how you say? Momma's girls. Definitely momma's girls.

He's a funny kid. I took the picture above and ten seconds later took the picture below.

It's nice when you live away from family having friends so close that your kids call them 'Aunt Renee' and 'Uncle Don'.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Women - Are you registered to vote?

Are you *going* to vote?

Read this - and vote this presidential election. Make your voice heard.

The author of the blog linked to above reviews the HBO movie Iron Jawed Angels, a movie about some of the women involved in the suffrage movement - and a movie I now must see. I have always been taught that women didn't have the right to vote, so women went and marched with signs, some got arrested (and presumably were treated like ladies in prison until their husbands came and got them out), and then "Wheee!", we women were able to vote! The teachers left out a few salient facts.

My daughters will receive a better education than I did, 'sall I have to say about that.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Book recommendations for the little ones.

Board book recommendations. Four-years-ago-Me would be laughing at me right now. Recommending *board books*.

But four-years-ago-Me didn't realize yet that the illustrations and the easy "readability" (after 777 times) matter as much to the reader as they do to the listener. So I have two recommendations for you.

Mommies Say Shh! by Patricia Polacco

Get this book.

I mean, look at it.

The illustrations are darling, the listener gets to make animal noises, and the book ends on a nice, soft note - not that I'm going to give it away. Wouldn't want to spoil it for you. We loved this book.

Love and Kisses by Sarah Wilson and Melissa Sweet

If you share a kiss, you'll get it back. This book follows a kiss from a little girl to a pony to a dog and on and on until she gets kissed back at the very end. Very sweet and a good excuse to plant a kiss on a little girl sitting on your lap.

Not a must-have, but if you're short on board books and want quality ones to add to your library, this is one you won't regret owning.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Book recommendations for four-year olds.

Hannah's a story girl. When we're driving or eating or hanging laundry or taking a bath or sleeping or.... she's always asking us to tell her a story. I'm on a mission to find non-princess stories to throw into the mix, and found some good ones at the library.

I would recommend these books for four year olds to eight year olds. All of these books had wonderful illustrations and were easy to read - even for the hundred-and-eleventieth time - but, more importantly, they were easy to remember and are now on our "tell me a story" rotation.

The Shaking Bag by Gwendolyn Battle-Lavert, illustrated by Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson

A story about a generous old woman who lives with her dog and shares her bread with the birds. Gorgeous illustrations, exciting lyrics that the kids love to shout along with you, and a great ending for a child who believes in magic.

Soap! Soap! Don't Forget the Soap!: An Appalachian Folktale by Tom Birdseye and Andrew Glass

Poor Plug Honeycut. This hilarious book - with illustrations to match - tell the story of a forgetful, but well-meaning boy who is on an errand from his mother. As he heads to town, his poor memory gets him into ever-increasing trouble as he tries to remember his mother's admonition. After being asked to tell it so many times, even my two year old knows the refrain and yells "SOAP, SOAP!!!" when I tell this story. Definite keeper.

The Long Haired Girl: A Chinese Legend by Doreen Rappaport

A good story if you're looking for strong female characters with no romance involved.

Ah-Mei lives near the Lei-Gong Mountains in China. A drought comes and everyone is suffering terribly. Ah-Mei finds a secret spring of water in the mountains, but is told by Lei-Gong, the God of Thunder, that he will kill her if she shares knowledge of this life-saving spring with anyone. Ah-Mei has to choose between her life or the lives of all those who suffer around her.

The illustrations in this book are stunning, especially to princess-loving girls.

These are all books that I would like to add to our private library. They're well worth it.

Friday, September 26, 2008


Hannah: (looking at Ains wearing her sunglasses and new hat) You look sexy, Ainser! Doesn't she look sexy Mother?

Mother: (thinking "I need to talk to Matt about his love of Simpsons") No, not really. Sexy is a term you use for adults, not kids. Are you trying to say she looks pretty?

H: Yes. But pretty's boring.

M: How about 'cute'?

H: OK. Ainser, you look cute.

H: Mother?

M: Yes?

H: You look sexy.

M: Well, thank you sweetie.

I'm still tweaking this 'how to define' thing. I should have said "It's a term *adults* use for other adults and maybe you shouldn't watch Simpsons so much." But I just said thank you.

Bandana pants.

Check these out.

Aren't those sweet pants?

They cost me two bucks and a length of elastic. Took me five minutes to sew.

Check out the tutorial here.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Ainsley, my Ainsley.

Where has the time gone? My Ainsley is two years old today.

It doesn't seem like it's been two years since I woke my husband up and said "I've called the midwife, could you come take a picture of my pregnant belly while I can still smile?" I thought that the fact that I could still smile meant that I had hours left to go. Thirty minutes later, he was doing this...

Then I was doing this...

Hannah's birth woke the mother in me. Ainsley's birth showed me how strong I was.

I don't think I ever laughed harder in my life than I have since I've had this child. Enjoy this glut of mother-love. I could have pared the pictures down - but really, I tried. And I couldn't.