Thursday, May 15, 2008

First Song

Check it out- I can play "This land is your land" on my guitar! I went to the library with Joseph to day and we checked out this book which included the guitar chords. I am not fast, but it definately sounds like "This land is your land." Now I just can't stop!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Doctor Visit and Chapter Books

On Friday I took the boys to the Doctor for their well-child checkups. Tommy weighs 14 lbs and 3 ounces and is 25 inches long. He is 75% for height and 50% for weight. I was surprised because he increased 25% in both categories. Joseph weighs 34 lbs and is 38 inches tall. He is 75% in both categories. He is our little tank!

After the doctor visit Tommy was sleeping for quite a while and Joseph was playing with play dough in the high chair. I thought that since we seemed to have some time, and because it was a rainy day, I would get out some of my favorite childhood chapter books from the basement to see if Joseph would tolerate listening to one of them. I have been looking forward to sharing these old favorites for a long time, and he seems to have a really good attention span lately. I picked Ribsy by Beverly Cleary and Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingles Wilder, two of my favorites. Not surprisingly he picked Ribsy, because it has a dog on the cover. I started to read aloud, and we read most of the first chapter before Tommy woke up. Not a few times did he stop playing with his play dough to listen more attentively. He was very excited about it and wanted to keep going, but I had to tell him we would continue with it later. Tonight we finished chapter 2, and he was begging me to start "Little House in the Big Woods." I said we will read that after we finish Ribsy, which should take us a couple of weeks. I am so glad that I decided to read these to him, because they are so much fun (for both me and him.)

Guitar update

Well, I have been practicing for several weeks now, and so far I know all of the open position major cords (A, B, C, D, E, F, and G.) I also know most of the open position minor cords (A, C, D, E, F, and G.) After I get B minor down I will move on to the dominant 7th cords. After that I will be able to get by playing most things, or so I have been told. I am so excited about this! I have wanted to learn to play guitar for a while, but there are just so many things in life to try, and believe me, I have tried a lot - just ask Jim or my mom. :)
I don't have much time to practice, but I have the guitar out all the time in the office so I pick it up at least once a day for a few minutes. I have found that it actually calms Tommy down when he is fussy and wanting to rest. The other day Joseph was sleeping and Tommy was fussy, so I laid him down on the futon and played some cords. He immediately quieted down and then he started singing! I had no idea that I was so talented. But seriously, I guess that means that I am doing something right that I can calm an infant with just a few cords.

Wow! Three years old...

And look how smart he is!

Just kidding, Jim built the plane and Joseph is working on it. This was on Joseph's Birthday just after we opened the Keva blocks. We had a great day. Here a picture of the cake that I made for him. He loved the truck on it and insisted that we not eat it (well, for a few days anyway, after which he wanted to eat it himself.) Of course we did eat the cake right away, though.  I had lots of fun making it, but I think I am going to have to break down and get a tilting cake stand so that I can decorate the sides of my cakes. Well, it was my best tasting cake, if not the most artistic. It was a yellow cake with blueberry compote, and the frosting was a variation on the Wilton Buttercream recipe. I made a mistake that turned out to be a happy one. I accidentally used too much shortening, which in effect reduced the sweetness.  I only know how to used shortening for the frosting at the moment.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

May Day

Here in Nebraska people celebrate May Day. Even though I had heard of May Day before I had never heard of anyone actually celebrating it, other than California Pagans celebrating religiously with a Beltane ritual. Here people (presumably neighbourhood kids) leave baskets with all sorts of little gifts in them on random doorsteps on the first of May. May Day was last Friday, and this year we got our first May Day basket
! Jim and Joseph were in the front yard mowing the lawn and Joseph found the basket on the porch and came into the house with it to tell me. Our basket had flowers, some candy, a Christmas ornament and this little tricycle. It is quite a nice and friendly tradition and yet another thing that I like about the Midwest.