Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Grayson stayed home from school today with a fever and cough, but he rallied enough to trick-or-treat to a few houses on our block. Despite practicing saying "trick-or-treat!" he wouldn't speak once people came to the door. He did manage to say "thank you" once they handed him the candy.

Here's a slide show as he got into character as "Grayson robot:"

 The circle panel actually lit up and the first time Gray saw it he said, "Daddy, I'm a real robot!" The letters and serial number are his initials and birthday. So clever, Daddy!

Approaching the first house we realized stairs were going to be a bit of a challenge, but he managed to navigate everything without falling.

He kept saying, "I-am Gray-son ro-bot" in his best robot voice.

Once we got home, you can see he was pretty tuckered out. We only went to about seven houses, but his cold has really taken it out of him. It was enough to get a good candy stash and make some memories.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Pumpkin Patch 2011

Do you ever try to cram too many activities into one day? We did that on Saturday and then Gray came down with a fever on Sunday so we're paying the price.

It all started with a trip to the pumpkin patch. We went to TG Farms, the same place we go every year and, as always, they've added new activities to enjoy.

 Snoopy looking over our shoulder.
Coming down the hay bale slide. 

This was the first year Gray was old enough to go through the corn maze. Unfortunately, the summer's historic heat wave took a toll on the corn so it was a bit short in spots. Once you got into the middle of the maze the corn got taller and it ended up being more of a challenge.

Which way do we go?

They had some "hay livestock" set up for roping, so Daddy took the opportunity to let his inner cowboy out. His Uncle Steve would be proud.

We had the hayride all to ourselves.

The hayride took us past the "squarecrow" as Grayson calls him.

Out of all the activities, Grayson loved riding the John Deere tricycles the most.

After the pumpkin patch, Gray took a nap and then went over to Aunt Emily and Uncle Levi's for their 3rd Annual Pumpkin Painting Party. You can read more about that on her blog here. Then we went to an OU football watch party and cookout. After that, we headed up to Edmond and dropped Gray off to spend the night with my parents while Michael and I went to a costume party.

It was a crazy busy day, but we had lots of fun. I just hope Grayson can shake his fever in time to trick-or-treat on Monday. Daddy spent way too many hours on his robot costume to not enjoy it.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Sneak Peek

Daddy has been hard at work creating Gray's Halloween costume and it's going to be awesome! Here's a small preview of how a robot begins:

This is all you get to see for now. Daddy has big plans that started with his sketchbook and has included a trip to Radio Shack for just the right circuitry. Grayson's attention span is a bit more focused on the impending candy haul, but hopefully he'll pause long enough to appreciate all the design details.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Baby Bea

Our friends Katie and Tyler welcomed a beautiful daughter two weeks ago and I had the pleasure of meeting her over the weekend. Miss Beatrice Ann weighed in at 7 lbs. 8 oz. She also seems extra long (around 21 inches if I remember correctly) and is so precious.

She seems tiny and new right now, but we'll blink and she'll be chasing around the big kids. I can't wait to watch her grow.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Mensa boy

Grayson is going through an incredible learning stage at the moment and is soaking everything up like a sponge. Here are a few examples of the things he's obsessed with this week:
  • Volcanoes, magma and lava
  • The solar system (I quizzed him tonight about what rotates around the sun and what rotates around the earth and he got everything right. Thank you, OETA/NOVA. Ridiculous)
  • Playing air guitar and turning EVERYTHING into a drum
  • Dinosaurs
  • He can spell his name, but we're now working on writing a G. I'm realizing we didn't do him any favors by giving him a seven-letter name. Just wait until he's old enough for cursive...I don't even think I can write a cursive G.
  • Puzzles. He has two new puzzles that he plays constantly. They are both 35+ pieces and after the first or second time, he now places the pieces in the correct spot even before linking them together. It's like he's memorized their positions after seeing it once or twice. Kinda freaky.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Uncle Aaron

We had a special visitor this past weekend, one of Michael's best friends Aaron was in town from California (where Lightening McQueen lives as Grayson says).

The weekend was great! Aaron and Gray bonded over Legos, bedtime stories and lots of laughter. Michael and Aaron also had a chance to revisit their college glory days, doing a little bar hopping and coming home with one of my favorite new stories.

Apparently they were waiting their turn at a pool table when one of the young ladies playing at the table told Michael she recognized him from somewhere. His response was, "Yeah, probably not." to which she replied, "Aren't you Grayson's dad."

Ouch. So much for playing it cool on guys night out. Apparently she and the other twenty something are teachers in an older kid room at Gray's school. When Michael came home to tell me the story, instead of being embarrassed by being called out as a baby daddy in a bar, he was upset about the fact that some of-age teachers were out at a bar.

This was my cue to let my husband know he was officially old and needed to lighten up about a 25 year-old being in a bar.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


We hung out with friends over the weekend and were needing to entertain the three amigos indoors for a bit since it gets dark earlier these days. Michelle has a yoga video for children so we popped it in to see what would happen.

After a little fighting over the blue yoga mat, we got everyone positioned and ready to go. Look at their little hands in Anjali mudra, or prayer hands position.

The video held Gray's attention longer than I though it would. The teacher explained each of the poses in terms of animals and he was able to do a lot of the moves. 

Perhaps we have a future yogi in our midst.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pumpkin Party Extravaganza

Last weekend Grayson and I attended the "2nd Annual Pumpkin Party" at my cousin Suzanne's house (aka mom to Luke and Jack).

We enjoyed ourselves so much last year and I was happy that Suzanne was brave enough to invite us back for more pumpkin painting and cookie decorating. It's quite a rowdy bunch of kiddos, but they kept the mess pretty much confined to the garage and their clothes.

Gray and I got stuck in several random traffic jams on the way, so we arrived about 45 minutes late and right as the pumpkin painting was finishing up. Despite our frustrating trip, Luke (aka Thor) was a gracious host and kept his cousin company while Gray took part in an abbreviated version of the fun. Here are a few of the highlights:

Thor/Luke "art directing" Grayson's pumpkin paint job

 Mama's favorite part...cookie decorating time!

Suzanne found some adorable vampire fangs for the kids and they really got a kick out of them. I love baby Jack's face in the picture below. Out of all the kids (many of which are 3-4 years older, he's the only one looking at the camera).

Friday, October 14, 2011

Hello Weekend

Oh how I love Fridays...we plan to spend the weekend just hanging around. One of Michael's long-time friends is in town from California and we have plans to relax and catch up over the next few days. Tomorrow, Gray and I are also headed over to visit cousins Luke and Jack for a pumpkin painting party. 

More updates will come soon, but for now we hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Eco-Activist in Training

For the past eight years I've volunteered for a couple of sustainability-related non-profit organizations. When we lived in St. Louis, I was on the board of an urban reforestation group called Forest ReLeaf. Then we moved back to Oklahoma and for the last five or so years I've worked with Sustainable OKC.

These groups have both taught me a great deal about the importance of getting involved in the community where you live, how people from very different backgrounds can bond over a joint cause, and the power that comes from individuals looking to make a difference.

Michael has been a trooper through it all and takes it in stride when I do things like volunteer him to completely redesign a website (which Forest ReLeaf still uses six years later) or wash dishes for hours at a fundraiser when he was promised a date night.

A few weeks ago we had the opportunity for Grayson to get in on the action. We attended a local event called Moving Planet OK which involved a festival and a walk/ride to support organizations and initiatives which move Oklahoma toward being a healthier, more sustainable state.

As a volunteer, I wasn't able to participate in the walk/ride, but Grayson and Daddy didn't miss the chance to pull out the bike and trailer to join in the festivities. See if you can spot them in the first video.


There were 170+ people in the walk/ride and even more at the festival, so overall it was a fun event and the weather was perfect! No matter the cause, I hope our son grows up understanding the importance of volunteerism, especially in a world where it's so easy to get caught up in the fast pace of life.
(Unfortunately, I'm not sure who took this picture so I don't know who to credit. I swiped it off the Sustainable OKC website)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Backyard fun

I finally got around to downloading some pictures off my camera and came across these from a picnic several weeks ago at our friends' house. I love watching Grayson play with his buds when they don't think any adults are around (but we're close enough to overhear their pint-sized conversations).

Conflicts do arise from time-to-time, but we let them try to resolve it themselves before any parents intervene. Usually they work it out amicably, unless they are hungry or tired and a meltdown ensues.

Isn't this kid-sized picnic table the cutest? Liam's granddad made it for his second birthday. He also made the sandbox above for Liam's first birthday. Such thoughtful gifts that are already making many memories with these kiddos!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Boomer Sooner!

As many of you know, OU's football team romped longtime rival the Univ. of Texas on Saturday and we spent the day enjoying the longhorn demise while also instilling Sooner pride in our next generation. Here are a few of the highlights you won't see on ESPN:

Can I get a Boomer?! Oh, we're #1...that works too.

Despite our substantial lead on the scoreboard, Cora and Gray donned rally caps as they refueled on fruit.

Liam lookin' cute in his Sooner gear 

 I was able to catch two sweet moments between Gray and baby Claire.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Sweet & Sour

We experience daily conversations with Grayson that would totally crack you up, but last night included two nearly back-to-back dialogues that were worth sharing.

Michael came home with a cold and low-grade fever (which he likely picked up from his son over the weekend) and was suggled up on the couch at 7:30 p.m. By about 7:45 p.m. he was starting to snooze so Grayson and I got daddy up to relocate to his bed.

Grayson enjoyed being the one to tuck someone in and it went a little something like this...

Me: Michael, you need to move to the bed before you completely fall asleep. Grayson, do you want to help me tuck daddy in?

Gray: Come on daddy, it's time for bed.

Once Michael was in bed, Grayson enjoyed covering him up and then sang him Jesus Loves the Little Children of the World (one of Gray's nightly requests). Then he asked daddy, "Do you want my Lightening McQueen (aka Gray's prized possession)?"

How thoughtful and sweet is that? Then a short while later Gray needed to go potty. I went into the bathroom with him to help unbutton his jeans and when he sat on the potty he looked up and said, "Mommy, I need some privacy."

I was stunned into silence and didn't know what to say, but then Gray added, "Can you shut the door please, Mommy?"

Seriously? This kid can't even undo his own pants and he wants privacy?