Friday, October 30, 2009

When Clara comes over...

...there is always dancing:

video

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Yardwork

I discovered a new hobby today- yard work. I bundled Luke up (partly because it was cold, partly to prevent more bug bites), grabbed a rake, broom, and trash bags and headed outdoors. I had been noticing that, since we have the biggest tree, our lawn tends to have the most leaves on it of all the houses on our block. Not wanting to be a poor neighbor, I got to work.

I love physical labor. It always evens me out a bit, lifts my spirits, and helps me think more clearly. It was a joy to see how much Luke liked being outdoors too. When we are inside, he wants mommy as a constant companion and playmate. Outdoors, he is very independent and excited to discover new territory. Luke walked all over my leaf piles, dug in the dirt, and hunted for acorns.

Here are some pictures of our hard work:


3 big bags!
Clean entryway!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Festivities and the News

Yesterday, Nathan and I took Luke to a Mediterranean Festival (think Greek Festival with more Arabic food) at a local Orthodox church. We all had a great time. There was an abundance of tasty food, great music and entertainment, and Luke's favorite- a giant blow-up obstacle course.

Luke was in top form- walking all over the festival grounds, dancing to the music, and eating lots of pita bread. He kept wandering over to the "Amazon family obstacle course," which was a giant inflated obstacle course made for children obviously older than him. That didn't stop him though. After pulling him away from the course several times, I gave in and we went through it together. Luke surprised me with his braver, and I surprised myself with how strong I have become after carrying him around so much.

To make it through the course, you had to climb up two different walls just by hanging on to a rope and gripping your feet into a ladder built into the wall. When you got to the top, there was a slide on the other side. I held Luke with one arm and trudged up the wall, holding on with my other hand and both feet. When We got to the top, Luke wiggled out of my arms, turned on his belly and slid down all by himself. (note to grandparents: remember this was all done in a heavily padded blow-up arena).

Oh, and one unhappy thing. Luke got a bite on his ankle from something in the grass and it is red and swollen. I think it was a spider, but am not sure. We are watching him closely and have put a rub on it. Please pray that it does not get any worse. He went to church today without shoes on because it was so big. Poor baby.

Here are some pictures of our day:

Pita baby:


Dancing to the music
A view of the grounds:

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Big Foot



Luke has big feet- really big. I bought him some shoes a month and a half ago and he has already outgrown them. He is now a 6 and 1/2 extra wide! For an idea of how big that is, Clara (age 3), is a 7 and 1/2. She is also not an extra wide. :)

I looked and looked for shoes for him. Stores do not regularly sell extra wide except stride-rite (who wanted $50). Finally, I found a pair of tennis shoes at Marshall's that worked.

Luke loves his new shoes and wants to walk around all day in them. Aren't they cute? :)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Big Boy



Luke likes sitting at the table... but not in his high chair.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Language Explosion!

This past month has been amazing. I am really enjoying watching Luke play with new things, play in new ways, and learn how to communicate.

New words include:

Please (sss')
Thank you (than-tu)
Grandma (ma'am-a)
Grandpa (bompa)

Also, he is definitely understanding what I say more and more. The other day Clara was pretending to be Snow White, asleep in her coffin, awaiting a Prince to come and kiss her. Luke was designated as the Prince, so I told him, "Luke, go over and kiss Clara." And that is just what he did- a big, slobbery, open-mouthed kiss.

Luke's kisses are big and messy right now, and he likes to kiss everything. I love it when I get kisses. He loves giving kisses- he breaks out into a huge smile after he has given one out.

We have been very happily busy these past few weeks with a parade of visits from family. I will update again soon, and try to get some of this verbal communication on tape!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

New Book

My new book just came. I am excited. :)

Here is a snippet from the back cover:

"The Orthodox Church is a repository of great and full spiritual literature- much of which can make a mother of young children feel like she's an irrelevant, distracted, decidedly non-spiritual entity... Is it possible to flourish and grow in your faith, while changing diapers and driving carpool? Close To Home shows that the answer is yes- and what's more, that your not alone."

Seriously, since the move and since Luke has gained some key new abilities (walking!), church has felt very chaotic. For weeks, I think that I have only been in service half of the time and actually paying attention for half of that. I know that going to church and being part of its community is not just about what I get from it, but I have felt so lost lately. I am looking forward to this read.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Space Center Houston


Yesterday we went to the NASA Space Center. It was truly amazing to see all of the artifacts and scale models of the spaceships and accessories. I relived a bit of my childhood admiration for space after watching Apollo 13. Remember the famous line, "Houston, we have a problem." Houston, that's right. :) There was also a great play area that I want to take Luke to when he gets bigger. We all had a great time- here are some pictures and a video clip:

video

Saturday, October 3, 2009

A new look

It is time that this blog had a face lift. It was surprisingly easy too. Thanks Bethany Jean!

Check out Hot Biggity Blog for a free background.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Pictures and Videos...

...care of Bethany.... http://bevany.blogspot.com/2009/09/fall-09.html

We had so much fun living with the Getz's while we acclimated to Houston life. Luke is especially showing signs of loneliness. Yesterday Luke and I met up with Bethany and Clara at library hour and Luke wanted only to play with Clara be held by Bethany.