Saturday, September 30, 2006

Cade, Gage, and Dane

Cade, Gage, and Dane are the sons of our really good friends, Mike and Deb. Chris and Deb have been friends since kindergarten and Chris , Mike, and Deb all went to high school together - I'm the only outsider. I met Deb and Mike while Chris and I were dating and we quickly became good friends (Deb and I now both teach at Franklin). Our kids have been friends since they were born and all get along really well. In fact, Jenna and Gage are going to get married some day....just ask them! Anyhow...Deb asked me to take some pictures of the boys - both together and seperate. I was a little nervous about it...I didn't know how they'd do since they are so comfortable with me...and I didn't want to disappoint Deb. But it ended up going great and being a lot of fun. The boys did a great job and were really cooperative. Gage kept suggesting ideas for poses and Dane was cracking me up with all his facial expressions and his conversation (he's truly one of the funniest kids I've ever met!) We had perfect weather and 2 great locations (I think this alley is going to be one of my favorite places to take photos. I love it!) It's sessions like this one that make me want to quit teaching and do this forever instead.

Here is a sneak peak of a photo of each of them. I'm experimenting with an online viewing gallery for when I do to see the rest of their photos, click here. (You can click on "view album" and then "view slideshow" to see each individual photo.) And if you visit the photo album, let me know what you think. I'm trying to get some feedback for future use. THANKS!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Corn Maze

Every year our school hosts a family night at a Kernel Cooper's Corn Maze. Last night was the annual event, so our whole family headed to the corn maze. The weather was perfect - not too hot, not too cold, and no rain! We got there early enough to eat (hotdogs, donuts and cider) and then began our adventure through the maze with our friends, the Chiles'. We only went through a portion of the maze. This year it is shaped like Mt Rushmore (click here to see an aeriel view of the actual maze we went's fascinating!) and we traveled through Jefferson and Roosevelt. We were able to find all 6 check points and make it back out without too much trouble (and without losing any children), thanks to our fearless leaders Chris and Mike. It was a little muddy in the maze, so we all had muddy shoes and jeans when we were done...but everyone still had a great time.

Jenna playing in the corn bin (I guess it's the corn maze's version of a sandbox)
Jenna and Dane
Jacob and Cade
Jacob and Jenna

Children of the corn

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Need some new tunes!

I need some fun new music to add to my iPod. I can download just about anything from itunes....but I seem to be stuck in a rut. Anyone have any recommendations for some fun new tunes (past or present) ipod is ready for some new downloads! My musical tastes are pretty varied - right now I have everything from musicals to 80s to hard rock to jazz to country to bubble gum pop from the Disney channel on my ipod - so I'm open to anything. :)

PS Mom...has Dad had time to play with his iPod yet?


It's official...I am a soccer mom. I now completely fit the picture of the all-American mom: married, 2 kids (one boy, one girl), great house in a nice little subdivision in the midwest, minivan, one dog, AND, as of Saturday, I'm a soccer mom. What more could I ask for??? The only thing missing is the picket fence (maybe I can get Chris to work on that!). I have to admit that I did not become a soccer mom willingly. Jacob already plays baseball and basketball, so when he decided not to play flag football this year (he played for the last 2 years and it just wasn't his thing), I was happy to have a season off from sports. Right??? WRONG! Chris immediately suggested soccer (he wanted Jacob to stay active....ummm, I'm pretty sure he would find a way to be active even without an organized sport) and of course Jacob loved the idea. They had their first practice last week and their first game on Saturday. Chris just happened to be playing in a golf scrambles, so I had to be a solo-soccer the rain. FUN TIMES! But, it turns out that Jacob is a natural soccer player. I'm not just saying that because I'm his mom....he really did a great job and knew what he was doing. He was aggressive and played his position well. And the best part is.....HE SCORED 3 GOALS!! His team ended up losing 8-7, but he was thrilled with the 3 goals he scored. Unfortunately, I have no pictures to share this week. It killed me to leave my camera in the van, but I just couldn't bring myself to take it out in the rain. Hopefully the weather will cooperate and I'll be able to take some photos next week.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

OKay, so sometimes I get a good one....

I thought I better be sure to put some good photos of Jacob on here to make up for the one ridiculous one! These were taken the same day as the other one. See...sometimes he cooperates and gives me a genuine, 9 year old boy smile. Looking at these photos I notice how much he's changed - he's lost that little boy look and is starting to look older. And sometimes he says and does the most amazing things. For example:

-When he heard Chris and I talking about Italian names for Jill's baby, he suggested "Pompeii" and asked me to leave a comment on her blog telling her. He stood watching me as I typed and proceeded to correct my spelling, telling me that "Pompeii" had 2 i's. Who knew??

-Random comment in the car the other day: "Mom, did you know that Timbuktu (I'm probably not spelling that right either) is a real place?" "No Jacob, I didn't." "Yep, it's in Mali and that's in Africa." So...I "googled" Timbuktu...and he's right. Again, who knew??

-He has the highest reading range in third grade at our school ...4.6-6.6 grade level (one of the perks of being a teacher is that I can check these things out...I never let him know, but it's kind of fun knowing for myself!)

-The other day we found a HUGE bee-like insect in our backyard crawling on the pears that had fallen off the tree. We killed it with wasp spray and put it in a container. He searched his bug dictionary and Yahooligans until he found out what it was....a baldfaced hornet (in case you were wondering!).

-Another random comment in the car coming home from school "Mom, do we have any stuff to do science experiments at home?" "I don't know Jacob...why?" "We've been learning about the scientific method and I just want to practice the steps at home."

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Drama King?!?!

This is why I don't have cute pictures of Jacob with various expressions on his face. When I suggested that we try some fun pictures like I did with Jenna...this is what I got. Just not quite the same effect, is it?

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Drama Queen Part 2

Here are the rest of the photos of Jenna's expressions...I couldn't get them all to fit in one entry.
(see the explanation of these crazy photos in the entry below)
And yes, that last expression was done on purpose. She was trying to act surprised. :)

Little Miss Drama Queen

Jenna has always been pretty dramatic....I think she likes to be a drama queen. She also has a million different expressions, and loves to practice them in the mirror. (Some of my favorite photos from Becca's wedding are of Jenna sitting in her chair at the salon making faces in the mirror while she was getting her hair done. It was quite entertaining.) When we were done taking the ladybug photos (see post below), the two of us sat in the grass and I started taking close up photos of her. She instantly started making all kinds of fun faces while I snapped away. I realized part way through that she could see her reflection in my lens, so she was being totally dramatic. When I uploaded the photos onto my computer, I loved them. They are so "Jenna". It will be fun to look back at them someday and remind her of how dramatic she used to be (hopefully the drama wears off by junior high and high school!). I can't wait to make a scrapbook page of these....or maybe a fun collage.

And so....I present.....the many faces of Jenna.... (I won't be able to put them all in one I'll have to add more later!)

Monday, September 11, 2006

Where were you???

I never really understood the fact that people always so vividly remembered where they were when John F Kennedy was shot. Yes, it was a pretty important event in history, but why were people so fascinated with remembering where they were when it happened? I never fully understood that question until 9/11....then I completely understood. It seems like there has been a lot of coverage for September 11th this year - I guess because it's the 5th anniversary. So...where were you on 9/11? (Have you heard the song, "Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning?" It still gives me chills!)

I was home on maternity leave with Jenna. She was 2 months old. I had just taken Jacob to preschool and then came home to sit down and feed Jenna while I watched the Today show and as I watched they interrupted the Today show with the breaking news that something had happened to the first tower. And as I was watching the Today show, I saw the second plane fly into the World Trade Center live....and from that moment on I was glued to the TV. I just couldn't stop watching - I think it's because I had watched it happen and just had to know the stories behind the people involved - the families whose lives would never, ever be the same. I can rememer picking Jacob up at preschool at 11:00 and having his teacher ask me what had happened - they hadn't seen any of it yet. I can remember emailing Chris and telling him to call me just because I wanted to be sure he knew what had happened, and I wanted to hear his voice. I can remember wanting to call and see everyone I loved, just because everything suddenly seemed so scary. I can remember still watching the coverage in the afternoon while Jacob played with legos in the other room. I didn't think he had really watched much of it and didn't think he understood. But, then he called me into the dining room and said "Watch this mommy" while he took a toy airplane and flew it into a tower of legos he had built, knocking it to the ground. Then he said "It's just like on TV". I can remember holding Jenna and Jacob all day and not wanting to put them down. I can remember seeing all the people who had missing family members standing there holding a photo of the missing person, begging for people to contact them if they had seen that person. I remember thinking that maybe, just maybe, they would find some of those people alive. I can remember holding Jenna almost all day and thinking how different the world she would grow up in was going to be. I can remember exactly where I was and exactly what I was doing - and I don't think I will ever forget it.

I've been lucky enough to visit NYC three times since 9/11. I never saw NYC with the World Trade Center towers in the skyline. When I visited Ground Zero, I felt sick...even though there was nothing there but a big hole. Having been to NYC, it's hard to picture what it looked like before the attacks ....or what it must have been like on that day. I do know that I will never be able to look at the calendar and view September 11th as just another day.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Where is the love???

I just checked in on my blog and noticed that I have had 54 "hits"since I downloaded a web counter yesterday morning. The sad thing is that I've had 54 "hits" and NO NEW COMMENTS. Now, I'm sure a couple of those hits were me, checking to see if there were any new comments...but I didn't check it that many times! Where is the blog love?? Leave me a comment!!! It's no fun to check your blog and not find any new comments. I've always been slightly obsessed about checking the mail and would get so excited when there was something fun in the mailbox for me! It all started in college - kind of a little competition between the girls on my dorm floor to see who got the best "fun" mail that day. Eventually my mail obsession turned into Email obsession....and I'd get just as excited to see if someone sent me a REAL email rather than something they just forwarded or some spam. Now my obsession has evolved once again into a blog comment obsession...checking to see who visited, who left a comment, and what fun, witty things they had to say. So....LEAVE ME A COMMENT - please! :) It's really not that hard and just takes a minute...and just think how happy you'd make me.

Friday, September 08, 2006

For our Texas family......

GIMME AN "O"....

GIMME AN "H"......

GIMME AN "I".....

GIMME AN "O"......


(and please don't make fun of Jacob....he was a good sport and agreed to do this for me when I asked!)

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Fair Fun

Today is the last day of the fair, which means I have to wait another year for funnel cakes, sausage sandwiches, super subs, pink ice cream, caramel apples, fried cheese curds, tenderloin sandwiches, and homemade ice cream. It also means we go back to school tomorrow (HOORAY for 2 day weeks!)We spent 4 nights at the fair - more than enough for Chris. The kids can't get enough and even managed to go back a 5th time with Uncle Ryan and Aunt Becca last night. Grandpa and Grandma Davis even went to the fair with us one night. If you're ever in VW over Labor Day weekend...give us a call and we'll take you along. Everyone needs to experience the VW County fair at least once in their lifetime. :)

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Ladybug, away home

Jenna is our little ladybug. We used to call her that when she was a baby because she was so tiny. When she outgrew her nursery, we decorated her room with ladybugs. She still flutters around the house like a little ladybug and occasionally is still called ladybug. This weekend I dug out her ladybug wings (from her Halloween costume when she was 2) and her red tutu and turned her into a cute little ladybug. The wings weren't real comfortable for taking photos, so they didn't last long...but I did manage to get a few cute photos of our little ladybug.