Sunday, May 17, 2009

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Home Improvements - One COMPLETED, One in the Works!

First off, i would like to thank my father for helping make the following project come to fruition. This has been on my TO DO list (i have a grandiose one that I started the first year i moved in, TEN YEARS AGO), granted, at the bottom, but one that i always envisioned and daydreamed about, and it finally HAPPENED!

We created a stone walk between the street and the sidewalk at the front of the house. Many times there's been rain or snow and i thought it would be nice to have a solid path there. So two days ago, we just DUG RIGHT IN, quite literally. Dad went to Lowe's and bought black paper liner (to keep the weeds out once we dug), small gravel stones and some long edging stones that he says were only 20 cents each! That's my kinda price. The large flagstone we already had in our backyard that at one time lined the "garden" in the back, which has long since overgrown. Eek.

Dad and i took turns digging the grass up, just under the roots. We also took turns getting most of the dirt off the 'sod patch' so we could keep that good dirt and pitch the grass. Sammy helped (or so he'd like to think!). Actually, Sam was being AWESOME. So cute with his comments, one of which went something like, "Mommy... you're doing a VERY GOOD job" and "Mommy... i really like the way this looks." Why thank you Sam.

Thom was being an angel as well. But it could be that he was just siked that we had included him: I set up his Exersaucer on the front porch in direct view of our activity, so he screeched and cooed from up there, in the shade with a nice breeze.

Our next endeavor: A Veggie Garden. Dad and Ron worked diligently together on plotting out the rectangle in our backyard and rototilling it up. There are clumps of grass sod (much like the front path project) here and there in the area that Dad is working on getting out. It started raining on him (and Sam) so he had to cut the day short. Which is fine. I personally think he needed a break from all the activity the day before AND 2 days before that with the front stone path. Dad's a trooper. He's not letting on to back pain if he's got it; i know that i was a mess this morning, feeling about 89 years old and very outta shape. Muscles i didn't know i had were aching. Oof.

The next step is installing some wooden sides and Ron suggested some fencing to keep the critters out. An excellent idea. More photos and stories as they develop!

So About Thom's Stats

Quick entry here: Thom's 9 mo. check went well. Ron took him. Doc was a little concerned that he wasn't more 'advanced' physically (sitting up strong, crawling and scooching). Ron and i are not worried. Thom is very strong, we can feel it in his pull and in his legs when he stands on us. I think he's just being a lazy, carefree baby, and before we know it, he'll be scooching and walking in no time. Thom weighed in at 19 lbs. 2 oz. and fell once again in the 90th percentile with his height at 29.5 inches. So far, all indicators point to us having two very tall boys. Whatta hoot!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Casual Evening with the Boys

Thom is 9 Months Old Today!

Happy NineMonthDay, buddy! OMG, if you haven't yet met Thomas Magnum, please do pencil him in on your schedule. Thom is the happiest, smileyest baby in the world. He's growing so fast, eating like there's no tomorrow and fits comfortably in his 12M clothes. His 9 mo. check up is on Thursday, so I'll be sure to post the height/weight stats. I'm going to guess that he weighs 21 lbs. No idea on height, but for the heckuvit, i'll toss out 31 inches. I'm probably way off for both!

I haven't written too much on Thom's development progressions, but so far, he's a touch "lazier" than Sam was. He's still not strongly and steadily sitting up on his own, though he's probably no more than a month off from accomplishing that. He still doesn't have any teeth (Sam had about 4 by now), but he's been chewing on his finger for the past 2 days as though he'd like to EAT it, so maybe that is right around the corner as well. He is not crawling or even scooching, but has mastered pushing up on his tummy, almost at a 90 degree angle! He rolls from tummy to back and manages to push himself around in a circle pretty good. Thomas walks pretty good while holding my hands! He actively laughs at funny things Mommy, Daddy and Sammy do to amuse him. He likes being tossed into the sky. He likes twirling around. He really enjoys his porch swing (Mommy maxes out the push, to much stomach-leaping from Nanny).

And just today, a long overdue milestone: I've swapped out Thom's carrying carseat (the kind that snaps in and out of the base for easy transport) for Sam's carseat, now turned backwards for Thom. Sam, as a result, has upgraded to a booster seat with removable back, which will eventually turn into just a butt booster when he hits the 40 lb. and 4 years mark (he's only 2 lbs. away).

Many parents talk of feeling "sad" when their baby/child hits various milestones such as these. Maybe i'm missing that gene, but I've been nothing but excited for such changes. I have a feeling hitting larger turning points will be harder for me once the boys get older. Like Sam going to Kindergarten, or Jr. High. Or Thom doing those things. And more. Who knows... we'll see!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mom's Day

I'm thinking about Mom today. Of course. I miss her. It wouldn't have been so bad if i hadn't heard the phrase "Mother's Day" about 100 times in the past 2 days. But that's okay. It's good to think of her smiling down on all of us.

Yesterday, Kerry and I got away SANS KIDS, however, and enjoyed ourselves in Alfred at the 2009 BFA Exhibitions throughout the art building, gym and new studio located on Main Street in a former fraternity house. We had a great day together. Kerry and I have very similar tastes in art, so it was easy determining how long we'd linger in one show vs. another. There was impressive talent paired with stuff that really made us raise our eyebrows. But it's like that every year.

For a full slideshow of artistic eye candy, please visit by clicking on the attached photograph.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

The Circus Came to Town!

... Not that anyone in this town would KNOW. It was the most UN-ADVERTISED circus i had ever NOT seen. I didn't hear about it on the radio, see it on the t.v. or read about it in the paper (I *DO* actually read the paper on break at work).

So, you may wonder, how exactly DID i hear about it? Well, we can put our hands together for Shirley, who heard about it on her end in Owego/Candor.

The circus came to Elmira's First Arena. It was hosted by the Kalurah Shriners located in Endicott, NY. They had two shows going on, and Shirley, Sam and I opted for the 11am show vs. the 7pm. This was both Sam's and my first circus! I know - i'm 38. Unless Dad can tell me otherwise, i had never been, to my recollection. I was a little excited myself!

Speaking of Dad, he stayed home with Thomas while Ron had to go to work.

LIONS AND TIGERS AND BE... well... ELEPHANTS! All three were there. Sam loved the elephants. Besides the animals, there were trapeze ladies, swinging and twirling on ropes or rings. There was a

lady and a man on a tight rope. There was a gal riding a few different mini ponies. There were three older ladies (triplets?) who did tricks and a fashion show with poodles, sometimes puppies (or miniatures) or sometimes adult dogs. They were just FUN. There was a gal that balanced stuff on her chin while she climbed a tall ladder. There were men that balanced on a board that teetered on a tube. I'm sure i'm forgetting something. It was the circus. Popcorn and clowns TA BOOT!

Sam only got a little restless in some points, considering the show went on during his normal nap hours. He conked on the ride home. Nanny Shirley had a good time too. Many thanks to her for treating Sam and I to such a nice day!