Saturday, January 30, 2010


Well, Tobias is officially 18 months old. I cannot believe I gave birth to a little, helpless bundle a year and a half ago. What a big boy and what a character he has become.

The past few weeks Tobias has started to use “proper nouns” – naming people and things… He says his name! (so cute!) “Toe-bee”, “Wuggles” (the Wiggles), “Elmo”, “Cookie” (for Cookie Monster), “Mickey”, “Minnie”, but my very favorite is…

…When I drop off the kids at Mother’s Day Out, Lydia likes to park in front of the church so we can say “Hi” to Jesus. You see, they still have their Nativity scene prominently displayed. Last week as we bid “Good morning” to Jesus, Toby blurted out “Gee us”.

“Ka goo” = “color” in Toby’s world – a task he greatly enjoys. I’m not sure which he likes better, the act of coloring or taking the markers or crayons in and out of their containers. Either way, he has a blast. He shows much more interest than Lydia did at this age.

Lydia likes to tell stories. We often hear, “Mommy, wanna hear a story?” Over breakfast this is what she told me,
“Once upon a time we lived in a castle where it was nice and cold and cozy. At the beach. Near the ocean. But there were whales who would bite us up, so we stayed in the castle where it was nice and warm. Theeeeee End.” (Can you tell she is a little bit traumatized by the whole “Jonah being swallowed by a whale” story?)
Here’s the one immediately following, “Once upon a time there was a girl and a boy and a dog and a cat (M: What were their names?) “Mason and Sheferty”. They lived in a castle. We lived in three beds. We had lots of animals. You guys (mommy and daddy and Toby) were there too. Theeeeee end.”

Another Lydia quote: She took instructions out of a new game, opened them up and said, “What does this say? Oh, it’s a message from the Lord. (now she sings)Don’t eat bugs, don’t eat cats…”
This is how we’ve spent the majority of our past few weeks… Goodbye “meditative”, Welcome, “Latte”.

Well, we did take a couple days off when we all had the stomach flu in succession. Lovely.

We also spent a lovely, warm, winter afternoon at the playground. Come on spring!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Brightened my day

This girl just lights up my heart. Here's some of our morning conversation...

She said, "You have a beautiful singing voice, mommy. You are the most beautifulest girl the whole wide world."

She also declared, "I want to write a letter to God" ("And what would you like it to say?") "Dear God, Help me to listen." AMEN! :)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Here and there

Yes, these frigid days have been keeping us inside. Yet, we have been finding ways to entertain ourselves both here and there, but mostly here...

We play in cardboard boxes...

We play dress-up: I came upstairs to witness (and obviously photograph) a princess dress-up session which included Tobias starring as "Snow White" - assisted by daddy.

We play bubbles in the sink after dinner...

We visit friends (and meet their adorable new puppy)...

We play cars...

We humor mom as she practices her photo skills...

We decide to take up playing guitar

We take a trip to Adam's County and the Explore and More museum
Apple Orchard

Talk about living in a bubble ;)

My little baker

My little painter

More words Toby knows (he will SAY almost anything to repeat it):
“goose, cheese, hand, help, one, milk, nose, car, hungry (hungy), tub, cup, banana (a-mee-nah), “oh no!”, sheep, kitty, whoa, gum, puppy, ham, mine, NO”
Finishes the phrase, “Ready, Set,…” with “GO!”

To our shock and satisfaction, Tobias has pooped in the potty 4 times in the past couple weeks. It starts with keen observation of gas activity. We ask him if he needs to poop and he responds, “POTTY!” Lydia did not demonstrate this interest so we are understandably pleasantly surprised. I have no grand visions of saying “goodbye” to diapers any time soon, but am happy we are putting our foot in that direction.

Toby also is somewhat obsessed with light switches. When he spots one, he will lunge out of our arms with his arms outspread pleading, “On! On!”

Over New Year’s my mom watched the kids while Mark and I worked. When I returned home she exclaimed, “Lydia dressed herself today!” I thought, “Wow, I guess I really should be working on that with her.” Well, since then she has really started to show an interest in dressing and undressing herself (before she would beg for help) and is really getting quite good at it. In the way that saves me time and energy, I love that she puts her coat and shoes on before we head out in the cold, but in another completely motherly way my heart aches as my baby is acting like a “big girl.”

We are trying to beat away the winter "blues" and find the joy of the Lord in each day. :)

Sunday, January 3, 2010


After a brief hiatus, Tobias’ climbing ventures have returned. And, of course, he is seeking greater heights. The other day I literally left him for a minute and found him standing on top of the dining room table. WHEW! He’s now a pro at the kitchen chairs and is dying to learn how to crawl onto Lydia’s bed. He is using unique means (like climbing on top of the pile of library books) yet to no avail.

Lydia has also had a resurgence of sorts. After receiving 2 new baby dolls for Christmas, she is back to her adventures with Blooper. And as Tobias is reaching new heights, her stories are taking us into greater depth and distance. For instance, this evening she went on a dissertation regarding her driving trip to Phileedelphia with Blooper. Blooper asked, “What’s for dinner?” (Lydia went on to say that Phileedelphia has a lot of pizza and all Blooper wants to eat is pizza but Lydia declared, “No, we are having rice.”). She is also adding different voices to the characters, facial expressions, and a storyline that actually makes sense! She’ll do the same thing with her books, narrating the pictures. I tried to get it on video but she kept telling me to put the camera down.
Here's a snippet...

The remainder of the holiday was quite laid-back. The kids enjoyed days in their PJs,

playing and exploring their new toys.

Lydia is quite upset that all of the decorations are put away, “Mommy, where are all of the lights? And where are our stockings? Will you pray that God will bring us Christmas again?”
Even though daddy had to work on New Year's Day, we still got to watch Penn State win in dramatic fashion.
Cheering them on!

Lydia also declared this evening that “Tobias is my best friend.” A sweet sentiment, for sure, however she claimed this on a day when she threw an all-out screaming tantrum when Toby got one of her dollies out of its crib. Not sure I can whole-heartedly embrace this sweetness as truth, yet I certainly cherish the moments they play together and love on each other.

Ah, the love/hate relationship of siblings…