Wednesday, July 29, 2009

What a character!

Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create.

~Albert Einstein

Clayton's imagination is in overdrive these days. He is constantly pretending, "inventing", and dressing up. In fact, most mornings he puts on a costume as soon as he wakes up. We have been woken up by a stormtrooper, a policeman, Captain America, and Superman. The funny thing is that he doesn't even say "Good Morning." He just introduces himself (as whatever character he is pretending to be) in a lower voice. He is something else, y'all...

In my never ending quest to keep my firstborn busy, I suggested that he put on all of his costumes, and I would take his picture in each one. He thought that was a grand idea! It took us 3 days to document all 19 of his costumes. Thank goodness for digital photography, right? ;)


Captain America

Buzz Lightyear

Woody (His Halloween costume from when he was 2 - hence the capri length pants. Ha!)

Zoo Keeper (Complete with velcro monkey and San Diego Zoo tee shirt)

Baseball Player (Daddy's old softball jersey & socks)

Pirate Costume (He uses his leather church belt as a sheath for his sword. Nice.)

Business Man

Basketball Player




Peter Pan




Racecar Driver

Train Conductor


Several people have asked me about where we have gotten all of his costumes. I got most of them at Target last year when they put all of their Halloween costumes on clearance. Some of them are from Hobby Lobby, too. They have a bunch of cute stuff with all of their birthday party favors (and its all super cheap). His fireman costume is one of his cutest ones and it is from Toys R Us.

Oh my, that kiddo is such a character! I hope he never changes - his imagination and creativity make life so fun. :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Boredom Buster Recipe #2

Today Clayton and I were trying to think of something to do together and I remembered that I had a fun recipe book with "Science Recipes" in the back. It was a fundraiser cookbook from the elementary school where Wade's dad was a principal. My mother-in-law bought me a copy and I have used it a ton. (Thanks Marsha!)

We decided to make homemade Gak/Slime. Let me tell you - that was right up my boy's alley! It got rave reviews! There were tons of giggles, lots of laughing, and a bunch of "Awesome!" Here's the recipe:

Homemade Gak/Slime:

Bowl #1 (mix in small bowl)
1 cup of water
1 cup of white glue
food coloring (optional)
Bowl #2 (mix in large bowl)
1 1/2 cups of warm water
4 tsp. of Borax (found near the laundry supplies)
Mix the ingredients for Bowl #1. Mix the ingredients for Bowl #2. Make sure that the Borax is completely dissolved.

Slowly pour the mixture in Bowl #1 into Bowl #2. It will immediately begin to form a polymer substance.
Slowly roll glue mixture around in the Borax mixture. Pull the slime mixture out of the bowl and knead together for a few minutes. (Note: There will be some colorful water left in the large bowl after removing the slime. That is okay. Just discard it.) The slime will get less liquidy as you knead it.
Play with it for as long as your little heart is content
When you are finished playing, store it in an airtight container (or Ziploc baggie) for future use.
P.S. I have several more recipes up my sleeve that I want to try. Never fear - the remainder of the summer is going to be boredom free. Ha! :)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Drew needs this!

I just saw this onesie on Etsy. Isn't it hysterical?!?! :)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Fabulous Finds Friday - Edition #2

Happy Friday, All!!! Just a few more hours until the weekend officially begins.... Yipee!

I'm going to kick of the weekend with another Fabulous Friday Find. :)

I have a confession to make to y'all.... I am not creative at all when it comes to doing things with my kids. It just doesn't come naturally to me. I am so in awe of those moms that just think up activities and ooze with creative projects. I sometimes wish that I had majored in Elementary Education just so that I would have been taught ideas and tricks for kids. I mostly rely on what my mommy friends are doing and what I have learned from my own Mom.

I feel strongly that it is my responsibility to teach Clayton right now. I never want to be that parent that just sends their kids to school and expects their teachers to do all of the work. However, I don't want Clayton to feel pressure from me. I want to make learning fun and pick things that are age appropriate.

A few months ago I stumbled upon the site I clicked on the "Join" button and filled out some info on my kids. So, now everyday it emails me with an activity that is age appropriate for Clayton and one for Drew. It is so helpful! Some of them, of course, are not great. I just delete those. But, most of them are really good. I keep a pad of paper by my computer and jot down the ideas that I want to try. Here are some of the examples that I have on my list right now:

  • Clayton - make a grocery list using items that he has cut out of magazines, take it to the store and let him check off items as we put them in the cart
  • Drew - let him use a mallet or play hammer to pound on bubble wrap
  • Clayton - trace his shadow on the driveway at different times of the day and explain the earth's rotation around the sun
  • Clayton - look at a map of the world and point out Japan, talk about their culture and dress, then go to a Japanese restaurant for dinner or lunch, ask the waiter/waitress to teach your child a Japanese word
  • Clayton - gather 5-7 objects of various weights, have your child feel them and arrange them from lightest to heaviest

I just really like that website. It has helped me so much in realizing what my kids are capable of at their respective ages and what I can be working on with them. I hope you all enjoy it, too!

P.S. I know that the "mommy blog" type of entries aren't fun for everyone. I'm so sorry - that is just the stage that I am in right now. I'll try to make next weeks find a bit more generic. :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Drew is 9 months old!

Another month has come and gone! Our baby boy is now a 9 month old!

The monthly monkey picture is getting harder and harder to take. Can you tell that Drew was about to make his escape? Ha!
* At Drew's 9 month appointment, he weighed 21 lbs. and 14 oz. (50-75%). He was 29.5 inches long ( 75-90%). His head was 18 inches around (50-75%). He is officially too long for his infant carrier car seat. Man, I am going to miss that thing! It made napping on the go so convenient. But alas, all good things must come to an end. I'm sure that he will love his "big boy" car seat, too.

* He still wears size 4 diapers and size 12-18 month clothes. Although, the 12 month outfits are getting pretty tight (especially around his chubby little thighs!).

* He usually takes 2 long naps (around 2 hours) and one short nap in the evening (45 minutes or so). He continues to down the baby food - anything and everything. Dr. M. said that we should start to add meats, yogurt, and mashed up table food to his diet.

* His 2 bottom teeth have broken through in the last couple of days. You can just barely see them peeking through the gums. He has been drooling like crazy and a little on the cranky side, but it hasn't been too bad. I can't wait to see his cute little smile when his teeth are all of the way in!

* He is crawling EVERYWHERE, and, I am here to tell you, that that little booger is stinkin' fast! He has pulled a lamp onto his head, played in dog bowls, and gotten stuck in several nooks and crannies around the house. He will crawl and crawl and then stop and sit up straight and look over at me with the biggest grin. You can just tell that he is so proud of himself. It's really fun to watch him.

* He is giving high fives. He sits and pats our hands as long as we will hold them out. He just grins and grins and kicks his little feet while he does it.

* Drew has discovered how to squeal/shriek. He seems to do it the most when he is really tired. It is really, really loud! It's great fun when Daddy is in his office on a conference call and I'm trying to keep the kids quiet, let me tell you.

* My favorite time of the day with Drew is when I am laying him down for a nap or for bed. I rock him (not to sleep, of course, just to mellow him out a bit before I lay him down). He puts his pacifier in his mouth and lays his sweet little head on my shoulder while we rock and sing. Oh my, there is nothing like it...

* Drew is spitting up like CRAZY! I feel like his reflux is getting worse instead of better. He is growing and gaining weight and seems to still be really happy. So, it is more of an inconvenience than anything worrisome. Dr. M. promised me that it will get better when he can stand up. You better believe that I am going to hold him to it!

* Drew loves him some Patty Cake. That is the easiest way to make him smile right now.

* He is a Cheerio fanatic! He stuffs them in his little bird mouth by the fistful. ;)

* Dr. M.'s nurse called today to say that Drew's red blood cell counts were low. We are going to start giving him an iron supplement and recheck his levels at his 12 month appointment. They were just barely below the normal range, so I'm sure that a little bit of extra iron will bump them back up.

Sweet Baby Boy,

My, how you change every day! You are growing and changing even faster than ever before. We have really enjoyed watching your personality develop and figuring out your ever-changing likes and dislikes. You still adore your brother. Your little face just lights up when he walks into the room. I wish I had a dollar for every time that I've said, "Clayton come in here and make your brother smile." He can always cheer you up when you are cranky. I can't wait to watch you grow into the best of friends. God sure knew what he was doing when he blessed our family with you. You fit in just perfectly. We all love you to pieces and are thankful for our Drew Boo everyday.

I love you,


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Boredom Buster Recipe

I love the summer time! Everything just seems brighter, happier, slower-paced, and more fun. This summer, however, I have been facing a new obstacle. Clayton is at a really fun age. He is full blown energy all of the time. The boy operates at a 10 constantly - he never stops moving unless he is asleep. I enjoy him so much, but he can be a bit overwhelming at times. Drew is at a great age, too. He needs his naps, and always wakes up so happy. He is such a doll baby when he is well rested. Therein lies the delima. Clayton wants to be on the go all of the time and Drew does much better when we are at home for most of the day. What's a Mama to do?

I have learned with Clayton that he does best when he has lots of structured activities. He tends to get himself into trouble when he has too much "free play" time. I have learned this the hard way. Let's just say that it involved an ink pen and his palms and soles of his feet being covered in markings....

So, I have been making an effort to make our times at home more fun. I've been polling my mom & Wade's mom (both are former preschool teachers), other moms, my friends, and doing research online. I've come up with quite a list of boredom busters. I thought that it would be fun to share the ideas on our blog so that other moms could use them, too.

On Friday, we made play dough. Clayton thought that it was great fun! He especially liked picking the color combinations and watching the play dough change colors as he played with it. Here is the recipe that my parents sent me when the one that I found online didn't work. This one is super easy and worked perfectly.

Play Dough

1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tsp. cream of tartar (DO NOT OMIT)
1 c. water
1 tbsp. cooking oil

Mix ingredients in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat until it forms into a ball, stirring constantly. Food coloring may be added. Knead slightly on waxed paper. Let cool.

It comes out white (of course).

We added food coloring in the middle and talked about primary and secondary colors. It was a good lesson for Clayton.
The finished products.

We also made a sock puppet last week. This was a boredom buster suggestion from Grammie.
When the puppet was complete, Clayton decided to put on a puppet show for me. He hid behind the table and talked in his best ventriloquist voice. This was our conversation.

Clayton: Hello, ma'am! What's your name?
Me: Hi there! My name is Sarah. What's your name?
Clayton: My name is Michael Jackson.

Y'all, I about fell out of my chair laughing. We are really careful with the content on TV when Clayton is awake. If the TV is on, it is almost always on PBS Kids or Noggin. So, I have no idea where he has even heard about Michael Jackson. I guess he's picked it up just from overhearing Wade & I. What a hoot that kid is!
Clayton & Michael Jackson
I hope that you are all having a great (boredom free) summer!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Fabulous Finds Friday - Edition #1

Don't you love it when a friend tells you about a great bargain that she found? Or when you stumble upon a tip that makes your life so much easier? Or when you try a new product and it works really well?

I love when I find a good deal or a new way of doing something.

So... I thought that I would start posting some "fabulous finds" on Fridays. Think of it as my gift to all of you sweet readers who suffer through me gushing about my kids and look at countless pictures of my babies. ;)

Today, my fabulous find is Eyes, Lips, Face ( A friend shared the website with me about a year ago. They have all kinds of makeup, brushes, nail polish, etc. and almost everything is just $1. Seriously, $1, 1 buck, 1 smackaroo, a George Washington! I will admit that I was extremely skeptical at first. I decided it was worth a try, though. I ordered 30 things (for $30) and have liked everything that I got. I mostly ordered brushes, lip glosses, an eyelash curler, nail polishes, and eye shadows.

I still can't figure out how they can sell most of their products for just $1. It's amazing to me! The website says, "We are often asked how we are able to provide our customers with such wonderful products, many for as little as $1. By developing quality cosmetics and the highest standard of service, but using the internet for branding rather than higher-priced advertising media; by sourcing the best ingredients at competitive prices; and by prioritizing our products, rather than their packaging, e.l.f. always provides you with quality and value."

That's your tip for the day, my friends. Try Eyes, Lips, Face out and let me know what you think. :)

Happy Friday! Have a good weekend!

P.S. Please continue your prayers for my friend and her husband. I know that the Lord is working in their situation and that they are drawing strength from all of the prayers being said on their behalf.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Thanks for Your Prayers

Thank you all so much for praying for my friend and her husband. I know that the Lord has heard each word that has been lifted up for them. Things seem to be about the same. As her sister stated in a Caring Bridge update, he is "stable in his unstable state." His organs are failing, but he continues to fight. My friend remains so strong and full of God's grace through this horrible situation. Please continue to pray for this sweet family.

Monday, July 13, 2009

A Heavy Heart

My heart is so heavy today. I am so, so sad for one of my sweet childhood/high school/college/adulthood friends. Back in April, her husband was in an accident and has been in a coma since that time. For the past 3 months, my friend has been so incredibly strong and shown unwavering faith. I have been constantly amazed at her courage and devotion to her husband. I have been blessed just by reading her updates and hearing how the Lord is working in their situation.

Last night and today have been very hard for them. Her husband's heart is failing and he is gravely ill. My heart is broken for my friend, her husband, and their families. I can't stop thinking about them and praying for them. My eyes keep welling up with tears just trying to imagine what they are going through.

I have been sitting and trying to think of how I can help them. They have an awesome, godly family that is a source of strength and support, I'm sure. Everything that I think of that I could do for them just seems so petty and insignificant. What they need right now are prayers and lots of them. So... if you are reading this, please stop what your doing and say a prayer for my friend. Please pray that the Lord will heal her husband's body and allow him to pull through this. If that is not His will, pray for comfort and peace for my friend. I can't imagine what she is going through. I am sad for her in a way that I have never felt before. I know that she would covet your prayers.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Crawling, Teething, Disciplining and Napping

Crawling, Teething, Disciplining, and Napping - hmmm.... that pretty much sums up the stage of motherhood that I am in. :)

Guess who is completely and totally mobile and crawling all over the place?
Oh, new found mobility - what a challenge! Drew officially started crawling (I don't count it until they have the hand-hand-knee-knee sequence down - I'm a rule follower. What can I say?) on Monday. He is now into EVERYTHING. He is particularly fond of pulling on cords and making whatever is attached to said cord fall onto the ground. Fun times. It's a good thing that he's so incredibly cute!

I can feel a tooth (the bottom right) starting to come to the surface. It hasn't broken through yet, but it probably will soon. Get a good look at that bare bottom gum, because it won't be bare for much longer!

Clayton has been giving me fits lately. I adore him with all of my being, but I feel like we are doing more than our fair share of disciplining him these days. I know that being rough & tumble is just part of being a boy, but he's wearing me out. Bless his heart. That's all I can say. Bless his heart.

He started saying he was "bored" yesterday, too. What!?!? Um, you're four and you have 5 million toys to play with - those were my thoughts. Instead of launching into the "there are starving children in Africa that don't have a single toy to play with" spiel, I tried to think of something fun to do. So, I busted out the face paints and brownie mix. Voila - Mr. Incredible bakes!
I have been giving Clayton "room time" instead of naptime. I set a timer for 1 1/2 hours and set him up with toys to play with in his room. If he falls asleep, fine; if he doesn't, than that is fine too. He almost always falls asleep, though. Yesterday I went up to tell him that his time was up and this is what I found. Even a superhero has to sleep, it seems. ;)
So, I'm searching the blogosphere for a little advice. What are your summer boredom busters? What activities do you do with your kids when it is 103 degrees outside and you are stuck inside? Last summer we spent A TON of time at the pool down the street. But, having a baby makes that pastime much more difficult. So... I'm at a loss for fun activities. I have a short list of tricks up my sleeve (making play-doh, potato stamping, stringing pasta/cereal, making popsicles, etc.), but I would be grateful for any other ideas. Somebody, help a sista out!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

My Yankee Doodle Boys

We had a great 4th of July this year! We watched fireworks with friends and celebrated our nation's birthday. How blessed we are to be Americans!

Drew's First 4th of July

Clayton loved celebrating "America's birthday"

God bless America, land that I love!