Friday, July 30, 2010

Celebrating the Feast of St. Anne

On Monday, the Church celebrated the feast day of the parents of the Virgin Mary, Saints Joachim and Anne. We have been trying to celebrate this day especially the past couple of years ever since I came across the idea for celebrating "namedays" for the children; that is, celebrating on the feast day of the patron saint of the child. We chose St. Anne as Caroline's patron because her middle name contains "Ann," and before I even really noticed that, Caroline already had chosen St. Anne as one of her favorite saints.

We started the day with a new St. Anne holy card at Caroline's spot at breakfast. Then, we prepared some snacks to share with friends who were coming over in the afternoon!

Making watermelon lemonade... which Caroline calls "watermelon smoothies." We got the idea for the watermelon theme from Catholic Cuisine, suggesting to use a watermelon theme for the feast of St. Anne since it falls during the summer and traditionally, she is portrayed as wearing red and green clothing.

I forgot to take photos of the girls rolling and cutting the dough and putting on chocolate chips, but here they are with a batch of cookies about to go into the oven. They look kind of ladybug-like before the green frosting! We used a box of organic sugar cookie dough mix and then ruined the nutritional quality of it by adding red food coloring... still wanting to get some all natural food dyes, because that would encourage me to do more fun baking projects like this one.

The girls were able to do the green frosting for the rind almost completely on their own... they just had to dip the rounded side of each cookie and rock it back and forth a bit, and then I scraped off excess frosting and set them on a platter. I would recommend putting them on a cooling rack or wax paper first, because they stuck to the platter since the frosting was wet...

Completed cookies! And as a random side note (because that is how I write, as you may have noticed!), see the bags on the counter in the background? Those are full of figs. Our fig tree is going nuts right now... we have one or two of those bags full of figs each day, and that doesn't include the ones that are on the top of the tree where we cannot reach to pick them...

I found the watermelon plates on clearance at Tuesday Morning a month or so ago and thought of them for this purpose... and I remembered them too, yay! Sometimes buying way in advance means I will just forget about it by the time the day rolls around... But I love Tuesday Morning - what a fun store. I love the song, too... I always think of it when I go to that store! Just another random tangent thought for ya... ;)

We were going to have 15 children in all, between the ages of 1 and 8! So, with that wide range in mind, I tried to come up with some activities that could appeal to at least most of the older ones... but it turns out that even the two year olds got interested in the crafts a bit! I got the coloring sheets of St. Anne from Waltzing Matilda - she has all kinds of hand-drawn saint coloring pages available for free! I also laid out supplies to be used for making St. Anne holy cards: cardstock, images of St. Anne found online, copies of short St. Anne prayers, glue sticks, markers, glitter, scissors, and colored pencils. My almost four years of elementary school teaching paid off with the scissors... I have a stash of about eight pairs of kid scissors from kids in my classes who lost theirs and never claimed them!

Here's a sample holy card I made so the kids could get an idea of what to do. I figured out how to put two images side-by-side in Blogger, and it wasn't even hard to do - yay!

Cecilia was the first at the craft table... is abnormally into arts and crafts for a two year old, but hey, I'll take it! I loved this kind of stuff as a kid, so maybe I passed that down to her. She just has such early pencil control, completely on her own with no "here, hold the pencil like this" from any adults... a correct pencil grip has always come naturally to her - so strange!

We had four families over besides our own. Here are several kids working at the big table... I love the looks of concentration! ;)

We had stuff on the small table too, so we could have more space. I was a bit concerned that with the age spread we might have some issues with a lack of age-appropriate toys, so I wanted to be sure to have the crafts on hand... but the kids played so well together, having fun with all ages mixed up, even with limited toys (I have a new toy policy with less toys out at a time, and maybe one day I'll get around to sharing that...). Less is more, right?

Working around the little table some more... you can see that we are severely unbalanced in terms of gender: mostly girls among our Catholic friends! And we also invited another family with three children, all girls, who weren't able to come. So out of 20 kids, only four are boys!!!

Seeing this photo reminds me of that sippy cup that was left here after the get-together... anyone want to claim it?

Caroline with a completed holy card

Cecilia, back at work again

The snacks - the other families brought pretzels and lots of fruit with a yogurt dip!

Yum!! We had lost of fun having so many friends over at once! The kids get to play while the adults got to chat - at least a little, in between monitoring the kids!

Here are the girls after everyone left - just before a HUGE thunderstorm! - showing their finished craft projects.

Thanks to all our friends for coming - we'll have to do it again in the future!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Random Bits

First up, Erin's wonderings:

So, the employees at our local Kroger have been wearing these random buttons with a picture of the sign for I-475 on it. That is the little leg of interstate that bypasses Macon, Georgia. I thought it was so random... so today, I finally asked what it meant. The buttons actually say "strive" on them above the interstate sign. Apparently they mean "Strive for 75%" of something. I didn't quite understand it, so I looked it up, and this is all I found, from a letter to the Atlanta Division Associates:

Our “Strive 475” program focuses on building stronger connections with our customers through creative selling and enthusiastic, friendly and engaged associates.
Okay... I still don't get it. The lady I asked today said something about "mystery shoppers" coming in and rating them at 75% or higher... ??? So, I will remain baffled at the little logo of the Macon bypass that they are wearing on their shirts.


Okay, so I have mentioned before that I use Youtube to listen to music... I have noticed lately that there is some apparent trend among those who watch those vampire-type movies and/or soap operas. They take some song and then put scenes from the movies or soap operas to the music. Usually they have described their video with some goofy explanation like, "This video is from So-and-So's point of view when What's-Her-Name leaves him, and blah blah blah..." I have come across these videos repeatedly, so I suppose it is some strange trend among people who watch these things and have extra time on their hands...


So, we got new garbage cans and recycling cans from the city. They are identical except that the recycling one has a green lid and the garbage one has a yellow lid. They are made so they fit onto the truck and then are lifted up and dumped into the back of the trucks. The lids swings open as they are being tipped. The funny thing is, the garbage and recycling pickup people don't ever, ever close the lids back, yet there was a pamphlet that came with the new cans which included "Care and Usage Information." That's right, one of the listed ways to properly maintain these city government-issued trash cans is to always keep the lids closed except when actually putting in or removing garbage. Guess the city workers and the prison work detail guys didn't get copies of the pamphlet... I wonder why they can't close the lids? I guess I am expecting too much of them...


I am wondering if anyone else thinks that Dodge Chargers look mean? Like they are glaring at me whenever I glance up and see one coming up on me in my rear view mirror...


Why is it that my five year old spills more food on the floor than my two year old at meals?


Wondering how much money we are going to spend this month... car repairs, new laser printer (my birthday present), new car seat for Cecilia since her current one is about to expire, buying supplies for homeschooling, new DSL modem (currently borrowing the neighbor's WiFi, sitting in the front doorway of my house... lame, I know), registration fees for LLL conference whenever that goes online (conference is in October), van needs new tires pretty soon... at least our refrigerator hasn't broken or anything! (knocking on wood right now...)


Why are so many people who are into "natural parenting" extreme liberals? It doesn't make logical sense to me... at all. I could probably write a long post on it, and I have probably wondered it here on my blog before. The question of it ran through my mind again today as I read this excellent article: Racks and Ruin. Yes, that is a pun, I believe... A quote from the article to bait you:
"Eventually sterile sex and sterile bottles became so intertwined that a large portion of the female population lost touch with the entire fleshy understanding of their motherhood."
The liberals who are into natural parenting seem to be trying to reclaim things like breastfeeding, yet still want to separate sex from making babies and from commitment. It just don't work, though! ;)


On to some funnies from the kids:

Cecilia is interested in teeth now that Caroline has lost her first one... she keeps asking, "When I am a bigger girl, can I pop my tooth out?"


Misheard song lyrics by Caroline and Cecilia:
"You say you say you say you walnut" (want it)
"Make up your mind, choose a carrot/choose a ring bearer" (choose and bear it)
"If I gave you all my CDs, do you think that you could keep them" (secrets)
"I want to know where the GPS of life will go" (deeper parts of life will grow)
Ahh, those last two are evidence of the technology generation, yes?


Cecilia has taken to referring to things as "mine" lately, as in "my daddy" and "my house." Yesterday, we were at a local farmer's market. Chris was going to take the girls home while I went on to do the grocery shopping. Cecilia asked, "Is my daddy going to take us home?" When I answered yes, she asked, "To my house?" Like he doesn't live there too and he's not also Caroline's daddy... if she keeps that up, we'll have more of the Wal-Mart cashier situations (where the cashier asked me if my children were sisters and had "the same momma and daddy").

Well, I know there were some other funny things they said or did, but I haven't been doing well with keeping up with typing them here... and this post has been building up for a couple weeks now, so I think I will go ahead and publish it!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Definitions by Caroline

Exile: the aisle in the grocery store where you buy eggs

If she were to use it in a sentence, it may sound something like this: "Oh, we don't use the exile, because we have our own eggs right in our backyard!"

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Mysteries of the Rosary Box

It is completed, finally! This was made in much the same way as the Stations of the Cross Box, with a symbol for each mystery. There is a card for each of the twenty Mysteries and a separate strip that has the name of each Mystery for matching purposes. I decided to put them all in one box rather than separating them by Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful, and Glorious... but they can be pulled out separately if need be for different times of the liturgical year.

These are the Joyful Mysteries, which cover Jesus's conception through childhood: an angel ornament for the Annunciation, a pro-life fetal model for the Visitation, a small newborn baby figurine for the Nativity of Jesus, a candle for the Presentation (because Simeon declared that Jesus was a "light" for the world), and a scroll for the Finding in the Temple.

Here are the Luminous Mysteries, which focus on Jesus's adult life on earth: there is a seashell for the Baptism of Jesus, a wine glass for the Miracle at the Wedding at Cana, a prayer card of the Act of Contrition for the Proclamation of the Kingdom, a white garment for the Transfiguration, and a "host" (a white poker chip with a cross drawn on it) for the Institution of the Eucharist at the Last Supper.

Here are the Sorrowful Mysteries, which detail Christ's Passion: a toothpick (supposed to be Peter's sword) for the Agony in the Garden, a whip (toothpick with string attached) for the Scourging, a thorny rosebush twig for the Crowning with Thorns, a cross made of craft sticks for the Carrying of the Cross, and three nails for the Crucifixion.

Finally, the Glorious Mysteries, occurring after Jesus's death: a stone for the Resurrection, a cotton ball "cloud" for the Ascension, a pinwheel (symbolizing the wind when the Holy Spirit descended) for Pentecost, a sprig of rosemary for the Assumption of Mary, and a crown made of cardstock and stick-on jewels for the Coronation of Mary.

This was fun to make, and hopefully will provide several years of useful, hands-on learning about the Mysteries of the Rosary! My five year old is enjoying it so far, and with all the matching of the titles with the pictures, I can easily see this being something we'll use throughout the elementary years!

All the cards (and the initial idea!) were found here... I covered them in contact paper after printing.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Mainstream Baby Care Rant (brief, I promise!)

Arggg... so, I am not even sure why Pampers thinks I am pregnant, but they sent me coupons and a little booklet full of "advice" for expectant parents in the mail today. I just had to rant about this page in it, located in the section entitled "Me." If I'm not mistaken, this same pamphlet used to call this section "Me Time." Or perhaps that is another mega-baby company. I get them confused sometimes since I get so much of their junk mail. I could probably fill a bigger box with all their junk mail that I have received over the years than with actual products of theirs that I have purchased.

So, this is a question from a new mom who wonders if there is a specific amount of time she should spend holding her four week old. She worries that she might "spoil" her four week old by carrying her too much, but she also feels guilty leaving the baby in a crib when the baby is awake.

So, rather than listening to her instincts (how many new moms can even do this nowadays? Too much advice, too many places to turn for advice, not enough examples of actual baby care in their lives, and we have this syndrome where new moms turn instantly to the Internet... hey, I did it myself with my first baby, although I didn't ask for advice on mainstream forums because I at least had a small level of trust in my instincts)... this mom is asking random people on a Pampers chat board. "Hey, these people buy diapers; they must have some good advice!" LOL.

So, the real reason for this rant is the response of the person who said that her sister's pediatrician said there is no specific time needed for holding a baby and that it is "important for babies to learn how to entertain themselves." Yes, you read that right... a four week old is in need of learning to entertain herself. Forget the fact that she was just in a totally secure environment, the womb, and now she is in this empty space and surrounded by new visual stimulation, and her brain is nowhere near the size of an older child's brain - and she is supposed to learn how to entertain herself by lying on her back in a crib, surrounded by empty space, so pitifully helpless that she cannot even roll over on her own???

The response about swaddling the baby so she feels "warm and cuddled and protected" is a bit odd too, in that I didn't know that blankets could provide cuddling to somebody...

I found it strange that these people also had no other place to put the baby while they did chores... like a blanket on the floor next to them while folding laundry. A baby sling or some sort of carrier while sweeping and mopping. It comes from a "the baby belongs in a crib" mentality.

I also noticed that these moms were talking about leaving the baby in a crib in addition to the time that he sleeps in it... implying that babies also must always nap in cribs. Babies nap a lot. Add up the hours of sleep to the other times left in the crib, and what do you get? Much less human contact (and yes, human contact during sleep is just as beneficial as when awake for a newborn baby). Flat-head syndrome. Oh, and maybe a baby who can "entertain" itself (snicker).

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Personalities of the Chickens

Yes, chickens have personalities... and each of our hens has quite a distinct personality! It is funny how very different they are from each other... I mean, who knew? I assumed before we had them that they were all just of equal intelligence (or stupidity, depending on how you look at it), and that they all just kind of did the same things. Of course they have some things in common, but they each have their own little personality quirks, which makes chicken-keeping all the more interesting!

Here is one thing that they all pretty much have in common... and this is a relatively new thing. This is a bush on the edge of our neighbor's yard. It is very bare in the winter, but by mid-summer, the thing is huge. There is a fence just behind it. The chickens like to go scratch around under there and hang out in the shade (chickens pant when it is hot, did you know?). If they are near this bush when we are trying to round them up and herd them back into their chicken tractor, they all run under this bush and hide. If we go to one side of the bush, they go to the other side and almost come out from under it, but then they go back the other way when we go around to the other side.

Some of the chickens are easier to catch than others, but when they get near this bush, they are all excellent at avoiding being caught. I am not sure which one made the discovery of the "hiding bush" and told the others... Even the one that is typically the easiest to catch is great at evading us when she has the aid of the bush. Last week, in fact, I managed to get her out from under the bush, but she ran about ten feet and then made a sharp u-turn. I actually tore a hole in my shirt trying to cut her off by running past a tree with sticky-outie bark... oops. I was really mad at the chicken, and I yelled at it and made Cecilia start crying... another oops.

The chicken who I was chasing when I tore my shirt is named More (the new More, who replaced the original More that a dog killed). We more commonly refer to her as "Picked-on Chicken," or just "Picked" for short. None of these chickens get called by their given names very much, ha ha. So, the photo above is of Picked's favorite spot. It is some shrubbery near our pond. Since she gets (or got - we don't see it happening much anymore) picked on by the other hens a lot, I assume that is why she likes this spot. We first noticed one day when we couldn't find her... she was in these shrubs, just hanging out. She must hide there so she can be away from the others. A couple weeks ago, another chicken (Sally) was actually in Picked-on's spot, and she went ballistic. This is the meekest and wimpiest of the chickens, so I was so surprised to see her asserting her will the way she did. I heard a loud squawking - loud enough that I quickly scanned the yard to see if there was a dog or a cat passing through - and I found that the loud noise was coming out of this little hen who I have never heard get that loud before. She was outside the shrubs, and Sally was in there - so when she found out, she was MAD! It was pretty funny... You tell her, Picked-on!

Up until recently, I considered Picked-on to be the stupidest of the chickens, from a survival of the fittest kind of standpoint. She lacks herd mentality (flock mentality?) and often goes out on her own, away from the other birds. I suppose this is because she was picked on a lot and didn't fight back, so she just avoids the others some when we let them all roam around the yard. She'd be dead a long time ago if we weren't around to find her and bring her back to food and water again! If a chicken is missing, it's her. She is often found wandering alone into a neighbor's yard... or more recently, she has been hiding here:

She has been going into these very overgrown bushes/compost-type pile/vines and completely disappearing. I don't know where she goes, really... she gets in there somewhere and doesn't come out for long periods of time. So this is why I don't consider her to be completely stupid now... it is a pretty clever spot to hide, because nobody can find her. We just have to wait for her to wander back out again.

I have observed Picked around the other hens while they scratch for bugs, and she doesn't seem to really know what to do very much. She will scratch, but it looks a bit awkward and slow, like she doesn't really know what she is doing. She cowers when any of the other hens come really close to her, crouching down and lowering her head. She has been picked on by all of them - at first it was just the three older hens (Picked-on was one of the two younger hens who we got after the older three had been living in our yard for a couple months). Oddly, her same-aged sister also has picked on her and went through a stage where it was pretty constant and really mean. Picked-on has hardly any feathers on the back of her head as a result of all this... that is where the chickens will peck at each other to establish their "pecking order."

So here are some photos of More, aka Picked-on, aka Picked:

She is locked inside the chicken tractor here because I was tired of trying to find her after she hid in that overgrown area so much... when we want to go inside, it really stinks if we have to wait for her to come out first! We always put the chickens back in the tractor when we go inside... one time when she was "lost" in the overgrowth, we did go inside and just kept a close eye on the yard through the window so we'd see her when she emerged. The other four hens were back in the tractor, and they raised a ruckus!! Squawking and pacing like never before, all four of them! They were looking out through the wire and getting pretty agitated... they knew that somebody was missing! Even if they pick on her, they still get upset when she's missing... how touching. Or maybe they were just jealous that she was still out while they were locked up!

Here is Picked inside the tractor again, this time with Sally looking in at her: "Ha ha, you're locked up!" That is Sally's personality! ;)

In this photo you can see how much shorter Picked's comb is than Sally's... I think she is sort of stunted from being picked on, so her comb has never gotten as tall as the others. Her sister, who went through some roughness from the three older hens too (though nowhere near as bad), also has a shorter comb than the others, but it has grown a bit here and there lately and is definitely bigger than Picked-on's comb.

Here is Sally. Her only nicknames are Sal and Sallus. Not sure where Sallus came from. Caroline also calls her "loudmouth" because she does tend to squawk and cluck the most, for seemingly no reason - just to talk. We also used to call her "pointy-comb," but Molly's comb has grown to be relatively pointy as well. Sally is probably Caroline's favorite of the chickens. Aside from Picked-on, she is easiest to catch lately (and she is preferred, since sometimes Picked-on poops on people while they are holding her!). She is also really laid-back, so she isn't bothered much by the girls carrying her around. She doesn't really struggle once they catch her. Cecilia even catches her now - just walks up to her, wraps her arms around her, and she's got a chicken! Sally is the one who will taunt other chickens who are on the inside of the tractor while she's on the outside... she will actually peck at them through the wire! Caroline likes to hold Sally and swing at the same time... like I said, a laid-back hen! She also didn't seem to care or even notice when Picked-on was squawking at her to get out of the bush that day.

Sally likes to eat clover blossoms... none of the others seem to care for them much, but if we pick some and then stick them through the wire, Sally will always grab them with her beak. She will push ahead of other chickens who might be pecking out of curiosity. She will peck at anything you poke through the wire, really, but she eats the clover blossoms. She will even jump up to the roost if we hold something through the wire up high, and then she will jump back down when we hold it down low through the wire. She likes to be the center of attention, I guess. Sally is always one of the first hens to come out of the tractor when we open the door.

This is Chicken, aka Wobbly-Comb. She has never earned another nickname for herself, although we have been known to make the comment, "Chicken is such a character!" This is because she was the only one at first who would peck at us any time we stuck a finger through the wire of the chicken tractor. She was intensely curious about us and anything we would hold out to her. She also used to be the easiest to catch, although now she is slightly harder to catch than Sally. I love the wave in her comb - it flops and wobbles all over when she struts around!

Of all the hens, Chicken and Sally probably have the most in common personality-wise. They are both pretty laid-back. Although any time Caroline catches Chicken, I know without even looking, because Chicken has this distinct "bawkbawkbawk!!!" kind of cluck that she makes whenever she is caught. It's a kind of "letmego letmego letmego!!!" sound that i should try to record sometime because I can't adequately describe it. It is not horribly loud, but it is certainly an agitated kind of sound!

Chicken and Sally both like to eat things out of our hands, like blueberries, figs, bugs - whatever. But none of them seem to like veggies much, oddly enough. We have given them old salad greens and veggies that are rotting in the garden, and they don't eat them. They all love to eat the caps of strawberries and any wild strawberries we find for them.

Here is the only Australorp hen, Eat. Eat is never referred to by her given name, but always by 'Lorpie (and sometimes Lorpus, I guess to match Sallus). She is the only Australorp now, so the name works. Her sister is the one that was eaten by the dog, and perhaps she has some sort of PTSD from that, because she was also presumed eaten for nearly a week before we got a call from the neighbors saying that they had been keeping her safe under their porch! Read the whole story here. She is pretty dumb, sadly... she is such a big, beautiful hen, though. She is also somewhat of a leader of the hens, in an odd sort of way. She is biggest and of a different breed, so perhaps the others sort of look up to her.

'Lorpie is kind of high-strung. She is always on the alert, looking around with her head held tall, and she notices things like a cat at the edge of the yard sooner than the others. She makes nervous little clucking and purring sounds all the time, and if she gets separated from the flock, she tends to look around nervously and then runs to find the others. That is, unless she is dust-bathing. She loves to dust-bathe. She rolls in the dirt and pecks at it simultaneously.

The reason I said she was sort of dumb is because she tends to get confused easily. She often has trouble getting out of the tractor when the door is propped wide open... as soon as Sally and Chicken are out the door (as they are always the most eager and get out first), 'Lorpie notices them on the other side of the wire and gets confused and nervous that they are out and she is in. So she begins pacing back and forth by the wire rather than using any limited problem-solving skills that a chicken may possess. If the door is right up against a bush, requiring an immediate right-angle turn after stepping through the door, 'Lorpie won't be able to handle it. She will stand at the doorway and look, but she can't wrap her little chicken brain around what her next step should be. It is quite entertaining!

'Lorpie tends to hover over the two newer hens, in a nervous sort of way (can you tell she has a nervous personality?), like she is watching their every move and monitoring them. She used to peck at both of them quite a bit, but now she just towers over them and they freeze in place and lower their heads, which occasionally earns them a peck, but not very often now. I guess she is just reminding them who's boss. I really think she is a strange personality to be in charge... and Sally and Chicken kind of march to their own drummer and aren't bossed around by 'Lorpie, but they don't seem to care much about the others unless they get in their way. 'Lorpie will chase after More and Molly, investigating their every action.

Finally, we have Molly, aka Skittish (Skit for short). Skit got this nickname because she was very, very skittish around us for a long time - we could never, ever catch her. If we got close, she didn't just run and run until she finally got frazzled and crouched down so we could grab her - she would flap. We got our hands close to her, and FLAPFLAPFLAP! - she was hopping away with feathers flying! Once she got to laying age, she would crouch down more often, but she was still the hardest to catch by far. I think the crouching thing is some kind of instinctive protective measure, like they are squatting down to protect their eggs. Lately, Caroline is quite good at catching her. I am not! ;-P

Skit is a stealthy one... she likes to steal blueberries. She is addicted to them. All the hens love to eat berries off the bush or when we toss them on the ground nearby, but Skit is like a psychopath who cannot stop herself... she is constantly going straight for those bushes so she can hop up and eat the berries off the bush, ripe or not! No matter how many times we run at her screaming and waving our arms, it is never enough to keep her away for long. If Skit is missing, we always check the blueberry bushes first! Caroline won't feed her any blueberries that are dried out or otherwise inedible by humans, because she thinks it will only reinforce her stealing habit!

Here she is, making her move:
This is as close as I'd let her get before chasing her off. We love the blueberries, too!

Skit is also missing feathers on the back of her head like her sister, but not as many. She was picked on some, but her flapping routine would help her escape much of the damage, I guess. She is a pretty quiet chicken - she makes the least noise of all of them. She only gets vocal when she is trying to lay an egg... sometimes she will go in and out of the nest repeatedly, for an hour, before she finally lays an egg. Come out, circle the chicken tractor three times clucking, go back in, sit on the nest, come out, repeat, repeat, repeat. She is sometimes a loner, but nothing like Picked-on. Skit is usually found with the other hens, just ding her own thing alongside them.

So, that is all I can think of, although Caroline observes them and probably has many more insights into their personalities! I bet you never realized chickens had such complex personalities, huh?

Monday, July 12, 2010

Cow Appreciation Day

Last Friday, Chick-fil-A had their yearly Cow Appreciation Day. If you dress like a cow, you get a free meal - any entree, side, and drink, for each person dressed as a cow! So the girls and I made ears, spots, and tails and went for lunch.

Here they are looking back at their tails... just about 6 pieces of white yarn tied together and pinned to their shorts!

We met friends at Chick-fil-A who were also dressed as cows!

Somebody working there wanted to take our photo as a group...

Caroline helped me to make the "Eat mor chikin" signs that we wore.

Caroline with a stuffed cow and two friends. The girls each brought one of their stuffed cows... we have tons of those cows. The girls have named some of them... we have Squashy, Pooey, Cowey, and I Don't Know. Cecilia brought Squashy and Caroline brought Cowey.

Waiting for our food:

This man was making balloon animals. He made some with white balloons and drew spots on them to make cows... so of course, everybody wanted a cow!

Another group shot... I don't know if they forgot they'd already taken our photo or if they decided they wanted one with the balloon guy too.

Cecilia's ears kept falling down into her eyes...

We love Chick-fil-A!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Random Bits

**Okay, so this has been compiling for several weeks now... time to finish and post it!**

Caroline: I'm pretending to be named CC.
Cecilia: NO!!!
Caroline: Yes, my name is CC.
Cecilia: Mommy... she's... messing up my word!!
Caroline: No I'm not; I'm just pretending to have the same name as you. I'm not pretending tobeyou.
Cecilia: That hurt my feelings!

Cecilia has said things that lead me to believe that she thinks one day she will actually be Caroline when she gets as old as Caroline. She thinks she will have brown hair when she is five, for instance!

Does anyone else have kids who have insanely accurate memories? About the smallest, most random things? When I was putting laundry into the wash and Caroline was helping me to find stained clothes so I could spray them with Oxyclean spray, she had one of these such moments of random detailed memory. I commented, "Wow, those shorts are really filthy!" (They were covered in black something-or-other.) She said, "Yeah, I wore those at the Tonic concert." I said, "Ah, so playing around outside must have gotten them so dirty." "No," she responded, "that's from where I was leaning against the police fence after the concert. The black was rubbing off on my shorts." This was at least two weeks after the concert (I can go that long and longer without washing the girls' clothes... they have lots). She then proceeded to find what Cecilia had worn on that same day so she could see if it was as dirty as her shorts.

Cecilia was outside looking at the chickens. Lorpie, as we call the Australorp hen, bent down to peck at the ground. Cecilia proclaimed, "Lorpie is showing her tail at me! And her bottom!"

Another fun thing Cecilia does lately is apologizing to inanimate objects. She ran into the wall the other day and said, "Sorry, wall."

Cecilia was looking at a photo of Chris and me that is in a frame in the den. She announced, "That's Mommy and Daddy wearing shirts!" As if this is some kind of rare occurrence... ?

Cecilia is doing really well with learning how to use the potty. If I leave her diaperless and pants-free, she does not have accidents. She runs to the potty any time she needs to go. If she is in a diaper, or in panties with shorts, then she doesn't quite recognize the urge to go or something. So she has been running around the house (and the backyard - just in case the neighbors don't already think I'm nuts ;) bare-bottomed. She recently told me not to put a diaper and shorts on her, "because I'm being Emerson Hart." (She has been pretending to be other people/animals a lot lately) So apparently she thinks he runs around his house with no pants, too. I guess in her world, everybody must do this!

I love that my kids think that cream cheese is frosting...

Cecilia cannot say "sunflower." caroline couldn't either at this age... she said, "Sunsow seed butter" for "sunflower seed butter." Cecilia calls them "funslower seeds." I asked her why they were called that and she said, "Because... we have fun!"

Cecilia named a stuffed tiger "Caramel Soap" recently. Okay, whatever... And of course, you know Caroline had to also name another stuffed animal the same thing!

Caroline calls a two-piece swimsuit a "half and half swimsuit." Ha!!!

Cecilia was recalling our trip to the zoo and wondering if we saw tigers when we were at the "Burningham Zoo."

Lately, Cecilia's thing to say to Caroline when she is getting annoyed is, "No thanks; I don't like you!" Of course, this tears Caroline up... she is so serious that she really believes that Cecilia doesn't like her and so then she persists in bothering her, trying to get her to apologize or to say that she does really like her...

Cecilia was eating a ham sandwich and didn't quite bite through it completely. She handed me a loose piece of ham and asked, "Mommy, can you put this back in? I pulled it out... with my mouth!"

Today I was reading the book Gus Was a Friendly Ghost to Caroline. In total seriousness, she asked, "So, why isn't he a friendly ghost any more? It says Gus was a friendly ghost, so he must not be now." I'm blaming the husband's personality on this one...

Caroline lost her first tooth today! She is growing up... the tooth fairy will bring her two quarters, I think. And I saw this really cute idea relating to the patron saint of teeth a while back but haven't made one myself, not thinking she'd lose a tooth this early. The other top tooth is a bit loose as well...

I had lots of fun putting together those last two posts on nursing in public. I have a third which will be featured on the Nursing Freedom website as a guest post sometime soon... I will link to it from my blog when it's up!

We went to Cow Appreciation day at Chick-fil-A with friends on Friday... lots of fun! If you dress like a cow, you get a free meal. So we all wore our spots and cow ears and tails... pictures coming soon! :) I am also planning to do a post sometime about the personalities of the chickens... yes, they each have their own personality, which is the neatest thing about them, I think!