Monday, December 31, 2007

Sarah imitating Mommy

I had already submitted the previous post when I noticed Sarah playing across the room. When I teach online, I use a headset in order to hear and talk to the students (who are scattered all over the country). Sarah is sometimes in the room with me when I teach, so she will sometimes ask when I get my computer out if that is what I am going to do. Anyway, there is a spare set of headphones that Sarah plays with sometimes. Today she put them on and said, "I'm going to teach!" :)

Happy New Year!

Well, 2007 is drawing to a close! I hope everyone has a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year! We have no big celebrations planned for tonight. I am going to make cheese and chocolate fondue here at home, and we will probably tune in just in time to watch the ball drop at midnight. Exciting stuff, huh? :-D

We did have a bit of a scare last night. Sarah woke up bawling last night. She screamed and thrashed, and kicked, and nothing we did calmed her down. She wouldn't answer when we asked what was wrong. Finally after about ten or fifteen very long minutes, she calmed down. She still wouldn't tell us what was wrong--if she was sick, in pain, had a bad dream, or whatever. She held her Scooby Doo (thanks, Uncle Dave!) and chatted for a few minutes, then asked to go back to bed. She was sleeping peacefully after a few minutes, and she slept in late this morning.

Best we can figure, she had a night terror last night. A bit different from a nightmare, night terrors are more frightening for the person having to watch (I'll second that!). My mother says I had them frequently as a child, and they do seem to be somewhat hereditary. :-p But at any rate, we all survived, and Sarah is perfectly fine today. We are going to get out in a bit for some fresh air and gift card spending. Nelson is thinking of using his gift card to purchase a new camera to replace the broken one, so you may have fresh new blog pics real soon! :)

Thursday, December 27, 2007

post-Christmas shopping and activities

Well, I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. We spent Christmas Eve with my parents and brother in Greeneville. On Christmas Day, we headed to Erwin to celebrate with my paternal grandmother, aunt, uncle, and cousins. Unfortunately, we arrived at my grandmother's house only to receive the news that my maternal grandmother (who has been in a nursing home for several years now) was in the hospital emergency room due to a rise in her potassium levels. We spent part of the day with her there in the hospital.

Today we got news that she is doing a bit better now, which is a relief. But if you feel led, we would certainly appreciate your prayers.

We received some gift cards for Christmas, so we have been enjoying spending those. We used a gift card to eat a meal at Chili's, then headed to Bristol for Speedway in Lights. Bristol Motor Speedway decorates itself with thousands of Christmas lights every year (some of them animated) to raise money for charity. When we told Sarah we were going to look at the Christmas lights, she proclaimed, "Because Jesus is the Light of the world!" (At least something from the Advent study sank in!). We enjoyed looking at the many lights, then we stopped in the middle of the track at Christmas Village. This is basically a mini-carnival, with food and rides. Nothing fancy at all, but fun for the kids. Sarah rode the merry-go-round twice, then took a couple of train rides. We started to get really cold, so we also got some hot chocolate to drink. We will drive back to Bristol sometime soon to take Sarah to the ice-skating rink that is also set up at the Speedway. :)

We did some shopping today, still spending those gift cards. :) We may have them all spent before New Year! :-D

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Just wanted to say a quick Merry Christmas to all who are reading this! Have a blessed day celebrating Christ's birth with friends and family! :)

interesting read

The health site WebMD ranked the top 10 health news stories of 2007. It's an interesting, informative read. (Yes, much of the year featured recalls of toys and food!). :-p

Here the link:

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas-y Sarah pic

Here is a picture of Sarah wearing a Santa hat. Enjoy!

feeling nostalgic

Ah, how fast children grow up! Sarah's only three, but already she is growing and changing so much. I'm starting to miss some of her "childish" behavior that she has outgrown...and some of the childish mispronunciations that she can now say correctly. Sarah, like her daddy, loves root beer. When she first started talking, she pronounced it "ree-boop." She said it this way for a long time, and I just loved it. But alas, now she says root beer properly. Yesterday, she asked her daddy to pour her a glass. Feeling nostalgic, I asked her if Daddy was bringing "ree-boop." She just looked at me and said, "No, I said root beer. That's what I wanted!" Sigh. My girl is definitely growing up!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

update on Sarah's singing performance

There is video! To protect the privacy of the other children involved in the program, we opted NOT to post the video to the blog. I don't think anyone would have a problem with, but since I don't have express permission from the other parents' to post video with their children to the Internet, I'm not going to do it. But I knew several people would be interested in seeing the video, so here's what we did: we emailed the video to the people we were pretty sure would want a copy of it. So if you are reading this post and did NOT receive the video via email but would like to have a copy, either leave a message to that effect in the comment area, or email me at I will be sure to get you one! Trust me, it's a hoot to watch! :-D

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Sarah's first singing performance

At church on Sunday, we got a special treat--a singing performance by the children! They had been practicing for weeks and weeks, and Sunday was the big day. Sarah's class was to perform "Joy to the World" and "Away in a Manger." Being a group of 2-4 year olds, they sang very loudly and enthusiastically--and off-pitch and behind the beat. :) They forgot to do the motions they had learned and practiced. And two of the girls were duking it out over the microphone (more on that in a minute).

As a Kids' Community volunteer, I got to be backstage before the big event. Interestingly, even small children experience stage fright. One girl complained that her stomach hurt. Another had a mini meltdown. Sarah burst into tears for no apparent reason at one point. High stress for something that was supposed to be fun!

And then the big moment arrived. The children filed in single file--and one girl tripped on the stairs and lost a shoe. Brief moment of confusion, but she finally made it up onstage and the rest of the kids trooped up behind her. The director signalled the children to begin singing. They did, with one especially enthusiastic youngster singing louder than everyone else (and also a beat or two off from everyone else). :) Two girls on the front row began tussling over the same microphone. Sarah watched this for a few minutes (singing all the while) and decided that she too would like a microphone. She also decided that she would like her OWN microphone. Right in the middle of one of the songs, she waltzed past the other children and planted herself in front of a microphone at the end of the stage! I hope I am describing this adequately, but it was hysterical to watch in person!

Anyway, here are a couple of pictures from the big day. Later we will have some video. :)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Looks like you're not such a mean one after all, Mr. Grinch...

Hmm, I think the Grinch's reputation is shot! We went to breakfast with the Grinch this morning (a special Christmas event at the local mall), and the Grinch was quite friendly and accommodating! No sign of meanness or grouchiness present! Of course, his heart did grow three sizes at the end of the story, so I guess he is a reformed Grinch now. :)

Here is Sarah, dressed and ready for her special breakfast rendezvous:

Sarah thoroughly enjoyed the breakfast. In honor of the Grinch's creator, Dr. Seuss, the restaurant served green eggs and ham. Sarah not only ate the colorful meal, she created her own drawing of it! Here's her picture of green eggs and ham:

In addition to the Grinch, the Cat in the Hat attended the event. Here is Sarah posing with the Cat...

And finally, the guest of honor, Mr. Grinch himself. Sarah was so excited to be able to "meet" the Grinch. She loves the storybook, and we read it together most days. She loves the animated half-hour special and requests to watch it on pretty much a daily basis. So getting to meet the Grinch was a real treat for her!

One last picture before we left...

Since our "real" camera is dead, we used Nelson's cell phone to take these pictures. I think they turned out well, though, and hopefully they'll give you a good idea of our fun breakfast this morning! :)

Friday, December 14, 2007

adventures in vacuuming

For the most part, Sarah is pretty brave and fearless. She climbs up all kinds of play structures without batting an eye, and she didn't so much as whimper when the doctor cleaned her head wound and glued it closed. However, she is bothered by loud noises (the blender, the mixer, the hair dryer). And the thing that bothers her the most is the vacuum. She HATES the vacuum.

Unfortunately, though, vacuuming is a fact of life; you can only neglect it for so long. And today was vacuuming day. I warned Sarah that I would be vacuuming. She immediately covered her ears and bolted for her bedroom. This tactic worked great...until I was ready to vacuum in there. As soon as I entered her room with the vacuum, Sarah started screaming and crying hysterically. She was so distraught that Nelson could hear her all the way in the living room, even over the noise from the vacuum! I didn't make any attempt to vacuum the corner where Sarah was cowering in terror; I basically just did the "middles" in her room.

I finally finished the dreaded deed, and Sarah tearfully asked if I was done and if I had put the vacuum away. I told her I was indeed finished, and I sat and cuddled with her for a moment. I reminded her that the vacuum wouldn't hurt her. "It did a time or two ago," she responded.

"It did what?" I asked.

"It hurt my feelings," she replied.

"How did it do that?" I questioned.

"It doesn't when it's put away," she insisted.

"Does it scare you?" I probed further.

"The big one does," she confirmed. "The little one is okay!"

"So do you want me to use the little one?" I wanted to know.

"No, you've already used the big one!" she immediately protested, obviously not wanting to take the chance that I might continue the vacuum torture.

Sigh. So now I am left with two choices...leave the house in dusty, unvacuumed shambles, or send my daughter into terrified conniption fits. Neither option works that well for me, if you want to know the truth!

Thursday, December 13, 2007


Since our camera is dead, it may be awhile until we get new pictures posted. But to tide you over in the meantime, here are some photos taken just before the camera bit the dust...

Sarah playing (bet you didn't know that laundry was so much fun, did you?)

Like father, like daughter...

Sarah looking sharp...(she LOVES these boots).

Sarah trying Mommy's pajamas on for size...

We have some video captured on the camera as well, but we'll have to figure out how to convert it to a format that the blog will accept. Stay tuned for that!

missing in action

Sorry for being somewhat AWOL for awhile. Many of you may already know about Nelson's job situation. Not the Christmas present we wanted, I must say! We appreciate everyone's prayers and support.

I haven't forgotten my promise to post pictures of our home, all decorated for Christmas. Unfortunately, our camera has died, so I can't take any pictures to post! :-p I have tried taking pictures with my cell phone, but they didn't really come out that great. :( So just use your imaginations for now! :-p

Guess what! On Sunday at church, Sarah's Sunday school class will be singing during the service! They will sing "Away in a Manger" (motions included) and "Joy to the World." I can't wait--I know it will be sooo cute. My parents will be attending, and my dad has promised to bring a camera, so hopefully we will be able to post pictures of that. :)

Sarah continues to enjoy our Advent study and "talking about God." She is always enjoying the toy bird my dad got her for Christmas. It's one of those that echoes back what you say to it. She is having the best time talking to the bird and hearing the bird squawk her words back to her. I personally am starting to find the darn thing a bit annoying, but toymakers don't have parents in mind when they come up with these things. Fortunately, it DOES have an off switch. ;) And I have to admit, it's fun to watch her get such a kick out of it. :)