Friday, May 30, 2008

Favortie Phrase Friday (aka - Random Facts or "How I Began to Disseminate Useless Information to my Parents")

Harrison Quotes:

"Snow make you cold and chilly and make you shake." - Followed by a very intense, full-body shudder.

Checking out the dog under the table, "Oh Duke, you have so many hair! Where did you get that hair come from? Dukie, poor dog."

When it's time to race: "On your Markets! Set! Go!"

Daddy put Harrison in a jammy that was too small the other night, Harrison's response, "My Skeleton is too big for this Daddy, I need to tell mommy that my bones are growing."

But his all time distraction lately is gender and family structure. Daily conversations include, "Mommy, you a woman and I am a boy, I'm a son. Big Brother is a boy. Daddy is a man. Daddy is a father. Big Brother is a son and Daddy is a son. Dukie is a boy. You are a girl, I am a boy. We are a family."

A couple of non-information based moments:

This week when I ask him what he is doing when he is out of eye shot, he responds, "Nothing, Mom!" Gah! [Hey you're not a teenager, yet buddy.]

Yesterday, we had a little friend come over for a play date [or maybe it was a mommy play date]. He's 8 months younger than Harrison and during their time together, Harrison got hurt. When he was all finished with crying, he got down, looked Parker in the face and gently said, "Hey, you didn't say sorry to me, you pulled on me and I hurt my head on the chair. You need to say sorry to me. You didn't say sorry."
Parker sweetly answered, "[sic, sic, sic] shawry [sic] [sic] shho oh, ah, oh [sic] yeah. [sic]" Harrison was happy with the answer. Apparently he understood everything.

Happy weekend!!

The Hungry Little Caterpillers

One of Harrison's favorite books is The Hungry Little Caterpillar. We have read it over and over AND OVER again. Harrison has acted out turning from a caterpillar to a butterfly since he was about 18 months old with his beloved Big Blue Blanket.

Then Ken saw an advertisment on TV for growing Painted Lady butterfies and we talked about ordering one online in the near future.

It was a no-brainer to get a butterfly house when we went the the Bug Fair last week.

Actually the Bug Fair took place over the weekend at the Natural History Museum, but I heard about it in the final few hours. Shortly after washing the car with Harrison, I crammed him in his car seat, opted out of nap, and drove across town to the Bug Fair.

Let me just say that he was a willing participant...

we arrived in time to still see quite a bit of bugs, most importantly, big furry spiders. Harrison even experienced a millipede walk up his arm. In fact, it was the length of his little arm! He loved it. I wasn't so loving the idea of it walking up MY arm, but I kept a Poker face. I just held his arm still, kept my fingers tucked under and smiled.

We also made a terrarium to keep beetles that we catch. We were going to get a beetle at the fair but we ran out of time.

Fine with me really. We have enough beetles and other big ugly bugs to put in it in the future. That will be a "daddy adventure". In the mean time he checks it daily for any signs of life.

Speaking of signs of life, he also got to "pin a bug". He picked out a beetle from a pile of dead - beetles, then he stuck a pin in it "for study". Yesterday, he said, "I need to see my pin bug mommy." He looked at it and announced, "Still Dead."

Before we left all the bug-fun, we went and picked up our Butterfly House with caterpillars; and yesterday, we moved our 5 little chrysalids from their cup to their new home.

Here is their week in pictures -

1. baby catapillars - day 1 May 19, 2. baby catapillars - day 2 may20, 3. Caterpillars may23, 4. Caterpillars May 25, 5. Caterpillars May 27 8:40 am, 6. Crystalis forming May 27 8:30 pm, 7. Caterpillars - May 28

Whire we watch and wait, Harrison continues to give us his version of the Hungry Little Caterpillar using his Big Blue Blanket as the chrysalis, he eats, rolls up in the blanket, stands and "breaks free" to fly like a butterfly.

I can't wait until they emerge.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Bringing Out the Creative Side

I realized that since my new computer arrived a week ago, I haven't blogged one bit. Not to say nothing has been happening, on the contrary, we've been very busy.

At the beginning of May, I got my hands on a great little book by Amanda Blake Soule called The Creative Family. It's filled with tons of fun ideas for family creative time and nurturing your child's creativity. Go visit Amanda at her blog SouleMama; it's always fun and inspiring!

Anyway, I gleaned a couple of things from her book that I immediately put into action.
One of them is to have a creative place for Harrison's art work and little things that we get while on walks and adventures. (Pictures on the refrigerator kept getting knocked off as we passed by) So in the dining room, where we spend a lot of time I made an area for Harrison's projects. Now I have a place for all those sticks and rocks that he doesn't want to let go of; we can look at them and talk about where we found them and what we did that day.

I cleared off the buffet, hung some twine above it and used wooden clothes pins to hang pictures he made from school, church and home.

The bean plant is from school, it's getting larger and larger, any suggestions with what to do with it before I kill it?

Also, I finally got some more photo paper from Costco and printed out some photos of some of Harrison's favorite places, things and people. We hung some of the pictures so that he could see them. Later this weekend we'll change some of them and hand the pictures of our caterpillars!

We also put together a small photo album that he has looked at over and over again, and taken with him to show when we visit friends. I love the idea that he has control over this set of pictures and can rearrange them as he pleases. He is also very proud of his album. I need to print out some of the pictures he took to add them [but I have to get more ink first].

Speaking of pictures, I want to say a BIG thank you to Melody at Slurping Life! I won a Snapfish certificate for 50 free prints! How fun is that!? and the thing is, earlier in the day that I entered the drawing, I was at Snapfish checking for deals because I needed to make some prints - perfect timing!

Check out Harrison's caterpillar experience - coming up next!

Friday, May 23, 2008

How to Start the Day Off Right....

Harrison usually wakes in the morning and calls out "Mommy! It's wake-up time!" and then the conversation goes from there. Occasionally, he will wake up and play in bed for a few minutes, his sweet voice floating down the hall to gently wake me as he makes believe with his toys. And on a rare occasion, he wakes up in a funk, crying about something and whining the rest of the day. Not fun.

This morning I didn't get any of that. Rather, I was brought out of my morning dream with a song...

"Yo-ho! Yo-ho! A Pirate's life for me! Yo-ho, yo-ho! A Pirate's life for me!"

Could he be channeling some Johnny Depp in his sleep?

Fav Phrase Friday - Where Does He Get That!

Big Brother has Thee Coolest room for a 3-year-old to venture into. He has TONS of Star Wars stuff, cars, musical instruments and Legos.

Plenty of Legos.

Now Harrison is still too young for Legos really; but when he goes in to play while Daddy plays electric guitar, he gets to examine and sometimes play with the Legos. Such was the case after nap yesterday.

The G.I.D. came downstairs to take care of a quick business message and when he went back up to check on Harrison, he had lined up Legos on the rug to examine them.

The G.I.D. asked, " You like the Legos?"

Harrison responded: " Mm-hmm. They're kinda cool."

Lately everything is "Kinda Cool! "


On Tuesday Harrison had enough energy for 5 kids, no exaggeration! It started shortly after he woke up and continued until the G.I.D, took over and put him down for a nap at 3:30PM. He slept until 7:00PM. Amazingly, he was back asleep by 9:30PM. Phew!

That morning I was trying to get an assignment finished for work so I could get us out of the house to run off some of that energy; but as it goes with toddlers, Harrison was slowing down the process.

He wanted a Smoothie and he needed it NOW. I was trying to reason with him, help him understand that he needed to be patient and wait for mommy to finish some work. (Reasoning with a 3-year-old - RIGHT!) After several moments of a smoothie dance complete with chant - Maw-mee, I need a smoodie. Mommy, you make me a smoodie? I neeeed a smoodie, mommy. Make me a smoodie - he climbed onto my lap, locked his arms around me neck (while I'm still trying to type) and continued the smoothie chant; then he paused and sighed,
"This little boy needs a Smoodie."

Luckily I didn't spew coffee all over my keyboard when I burst into laughter.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

I Love Gwendolyn

(Or - How I Can to Play with a Geo Tracks All Aboard Train Set)

A few weeks ago we went to a birthday party for Harrison's friend, GG. They have know each other since they were infants, and they love each other. The party was at the Little Gym and Harrison had a great time. As soon as he walked in, he had the staff at "Hello". GG saw him and immediately came running over to him to hug him. Harrison exclaimed, "I miss you Gwenlyn! I love you!" Then they gave each other a little toddler kiss & hug and went on their separate ways. The staff stood by, awing at the exchange.

There was balance beams and tumbling and a bouncer-type thing that Harrison loved. After that they ate PB&J and had cake. Then GG opening gifts. One of the last gifts was a Geo Tracks set. Harrison was enthralled with it.

On the way home Harrison told me he wanted to dance with a pretty princess, a princess named Gwendolyn. Oh, and that she is a girl... "Mommy, I love Gwenlyn!"
"You Do?" I responded.

"Yah! Can Gwenlyn come to my house? Maybe I can go to her house and play! Yah, that's a great idea!"

"Well, we have to call her mommy and set up a play date."
He talked about going to Gwendolyn's house for a few more minutes when it dawned on me...
"Harrison, what would you like to play with at GG's house?"

"Geo-Tracks Team All Aboard Train!"
A few days later Harrison asked, "Mommy! Can Gwenlyn come to my house and play with my toys and bring her toys? And we have fun!"
Knowing the answer, "What do you want GG to bring to your house?"

"Geo-Tracks Team All Aboard Train! Yeah! That's kinda cool!"
He talks about seeing GG at least once a week since then; but I keep forgetting to call her mommy for a play date. You know how it is, just working out those mommy schedules...

They do love each other, that's true, even if there is really more love for "Geo Tracks All Aboard Train" on the part of a certain 3-year-old boy.

So Wendy, can GG come over to play?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Daddy Files

The "boys" (daddy & Harrison) came in from playing outside and as they walked past I caught part of the conversation...
Harrison: "Master?...MASTER!"

Daddy: "Yes?"

Harrison: "Let's lay down and think about Yoda."

Daddy: "You want to think about Yoda?"

Harrison: "Yes, Master."

Daddy: "OK, then."

Harrison: "Master, may the force be with you."

Monday, May 19, 2008

Best Shot Monday - Getting Wet

On Sunday after church I asked:
"Harrison do you want to help mommy wash the car?"

"Yes Mommy!"

"Okay, let's change into different clothes in case we get wet."

"OK mom."
"Oh no, mommy I'm wet!"

"It's okay, you can get a little wet."
5 minutes later...
"Agh! Mommy, I'm wet!!"

"Harrison, that's why we changed clothes, remember? Mommy said if you get a little wet it's okay."

"Oh. Yah!"
Bubbles kept sticking to his face as he washed the car. Then he discovered the fun of throwing the sponge back into the bucket.

After washing the car the driveway needs a good scrub down.

And he had to give the car a good go-round several more times before he finished.

This is my best shot today- I love the reflection.

So much joy from washing a car.

More splashing and dancing! Then we are all done!

See more Best Shots at Mother May I.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

You are My Sunshine

When I was a little girl my mom sang You are My Sunshine to me when she tucked me into bed at night. She continued to do this occasionally even when I hit me tween years. By that time, the budding teen in me thought it was silly, yet the little girl loved what it really meant. My mom always said I love you to me, but the song was an added measure of her love, something I wouldn't fully understand until I became a mother myself - so many years later.

The G.I.D. sang that song to Big Brother when he was a toddler and young child, only the words were slightly different '
You are my son, Sean
My only son, Sean...
Big Brother is 17 now, not many opportunities to sing to him anymore. Once in a while the two reminisce about it in it a male-bonding sort of way, but that's about it.

Now we have Harrison, and we have each sang that song to Harrison. We sing it to him with all of the nostalgia it holds for us in our individual memories, we sing it with the joy of watching another beautiful life blossom; with all our heart we sing it because it so simply expresses our feeling for our children.

You are my sunshine
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skies are grey.
You'll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don't take my sunshine away

The other night, dear,
As I lay sleeping
I dreamed I held you in my arms.
When I awoke, dear,
I was mistaken
And I hung my head and cried.

You are my sunshine,
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skys are grey.
You'll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don't take my sunshine away.

Check out more sunshine at the Land of K.A.!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Monday, Monday

Monday, Monday, cant trust that day
Monday, Monday, sometimes it just turns out that way

Oh Monday morning you gave me no warning of what was to be

Oh Monday, Monday, how could you leave and not take me

Every other day, every other day

Every other day of the week is fine, yeah

But whenever Monday comes, but whenever Monday comes

You can find me cryin' all of the time

Monday mornings are just hard for me, I can't seem to wake up, I can't get moving, I just want to sit and drink my coffee. That was the case this morning, but I got us moving and out the door.

I didn't get around to posting my Best Shot today, actually I took pictures but they weren't the best and it was quick weekend. Harrison is feeling better, although now the G.I.D. is feeling under the weather. Ugh. And today for the first time in 4 days, Harrison finished eating a snack after his class and turned to me and said, "I'm ready to go up stairs now [for nap]." Oh sweet Glory! No crying, fussing, hitting or yelling. (This had been the norm for the last 4 days - albeit he still slept for about 3 hours once he calmed back down and settled into rest-mode.) But the pre-nap fits were getting old.
All is good at the Pierce Toddler Project, so I think we'll head to the Mouse House tomorrow. Our pass will soon expire, I need to take advantage of it while I can. [Oh, the withdraws will be horrible!]

Harrison wanted to display his "rock and roll" shirt for you. Big Brother has a matching one, so he feels really "cool" when he wears it.

Here's a little something he painted for me in church yesterday. It's a little flower that, as Harrison pointed out, opens to read "I love you mommy". It's taped to a stick and sits in a little pot. Very cute! My first Mother's Day craft. So many more to come!

Hope you all had a good Mother's Day!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Oh What a Night...

Remember that fever I mentioned? It broke last night around 12:30 AM. It broke and Harrison awoke. He called for me. I went in talked to him comforted him, sang a song and said goodnight.

But it didn't end there - not in the least...

1:20 AM - Harrison wakes again, crying out. I wait. Then I go in. We rock in the rocker for a while. I lay him back down. He asks for water, I give him his cup. He wants COLD WATER. I'm not going all the way down to the fridge for cold water. He gives in.

1:40 AM - He calls out again, he's had a bad dream. I don't remember the details, I'm delirious by this time. He wants to go in bed with us, I tell him to sleep in his bed for now and then join us in the morning. We cuddle, I sing a song, he asks for things that are impossible to have at that moment.

2:15 AM - He begins crying, he needs me he says; the GID tells him to come get in bed with us. He climbs out of his crib and runs in to join us. Telling us "it's dark!"

3:00 AM - He has been tossing and turning, kicking and talking, whispering and squiggling - no one is sleeping. I tell him he needs to be quiet and go to sleep.

3:30 AM - I take him back to his own bed after warnings to settle down and go to sleep. He crys.

3:38 AM - I go in and talk to him, more about bad dreams and pit droids and "I need medicine". But I don't retain it all.

3:40 AM - We sit in the rocking chair and cuddle.

4:00 AM - Harrison wants to eat dinner. Wants to drink milk, wants to eat breakfast. I am annoyed - after all, I am not officially sleep deprived. He is gazing down at a toy garage as we sit there and he says, "Wait-A-Meen-ute! Mommy my toys are moving!" I look down (dang well hoping to not see little wooden cars moving about) "No honey," I respond, "You're just tired. You need to sleep." "Mommy, see the sword fish, it's going to sleep, see it sleeping?" "Yes, honey."

4:30 AM - I'm back in my own bed finally. I try to fall asleep; but Harrison yells out.

4:45 AM - He is once again in bed with us.

5:15 AM - He begins to drink some milk.

5:20 AM - He spits out said milk and the GID and I fly up in a panic causing him to burst in tears. I comfort him.

5:30 AM - In the bathroom on the potty going pee-pee and changing closes. He wants to get dressed and go down stairs. I am trying to offer some alternaitives. (or at least I'm thinking of the alternatives...)

6:00 AM - Daddy takes him down stairs, Mommy goes back to sleep.

8:30 AM - Mommy wakes up and comes downstairs

10:15 AM - Harrison has crashed out on the sofa to Bob the Builder. He sleeps until 1:30 PM

8:30 PM - Night time routine starts all over again.

Calgon Take Me Away...

I Want a Big Fuzzy Spider

I mentioned that we visited the spider exhibit at the zoo recently. A BIG spider exhibit.

As in big spiders.

Harrison was (in all his boy-ness) absolutely enthralled! I, on the other hand, went along for the ride, I took pictures, I tried not to squirm.

Since then he randomly brings up his new choice in pets,
"Mommy, I want a furry pet spider!"

"Oh, you do?"

"Yees, a big fuzzy spider that sits in my hand and tickles me."
He tells me this as he holds his hand out in demonstration. The other hand pretending to pet said spider.
Now loved ones, don't get any grandiose ideas of the perfect gift for Harrison. No quiet, furry, timid, sweet, gentle, tarantula.


Gentle and timid or not, Harrison is NOT getting one of those until he buys it himself and takes it off with him to college! Or is married and convinces his spider-loving wife that it's a perfect first anniversary gift and pet.

As we go to bed this evening, he says:
"Mommy I need a pet yellow spider."

"You need a yellow spider?"

"Yes, Mom. A furry spider that I hold with hair that tickles my hand."

"So. How about that fish I mentioned?"

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Star Wars Breakfast

I was once a good mother that give my child a wide range of options over the week for breakfast, but at 3 years old, Harrison has already found a routine that he likes.

You see he must have his Star "Whores" Breakfast (yes, he still pronounces it like that, what can I say.)

What is a Star Wars Breakfast, you ask?

Plain low-fat yogurt with cereal. Usually Trader Joe's Mixed Berry Granola, but Vanilla Almond Clusters or Honey Bunches of Oats works just fine. When he's really lucky, fresh berries are thrown on top! (Gotta mix it up some how...)

Fortunately, I can still sneak in some eggs or toast with almond butter and jam or even some pancakes once in a while.

But for the most part I am told that a Battle Droid needs his Star Wars Breakfast.

Who am I to argue with a Battle Droid?

Theme Thursday - Fun!

Why is that lately for every day of fun we have, we get a week of illness? Ugh!

Harrison is running a fever today and I was down and out with a serious cold last week. Right now he is cuddling on the sofa with daddy watching Ratatouille. That's fun, even with bright pink cheeks!

So today I thought I would share some of our adventures with you, since we weren't earlier.

We went to the Noah's Ark Exhibit at the Skirball Cultural Center in LA, if you live in the area and haven't been there, I highly recommend it.While waiting to go in the exhibit we had lunch with a dear friend and then went over to the archaeological dig and uncovered some "primitive" pottery in the sand.
After the Ark there is a garden that has a misting wall where rainbows form. Harrison ran through again and again until he was SOAKED!
Since I don't have a good flash, the pictures inside the Ark are dark.

The next day we headed off to the Zoo for our first time! I admit - I haven't been there for something like 10 years of more! We had a great time with another friend and her daughter. We can't wait to go back again!

In the meantime I think I'll go join the boys as they watch the movie. I'm hoping that Harrison will feel better soon! We already canceled a trip to Disneyland today. Tomorrow is our park day and then we are going to visit our friends in the Valley on Saturday. I guess we'll see how he is tomorrow.

For more fun visit The Land of K.A.!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - Photos of the Day

I took these at a birthday party we attended on Sunday at the Little Gym.
There was much fun and jumping to be had!
More about that later.

One thing I've learned, Harrison REALLY isn't a PB&J kid...but he LOVES a good glass of lemonade once in a while!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Look! A Baby Wolf!

It's time to release some of those little posts that never got past the draft stage. (Mainly due to me getting busy and never finishing thoughts - or posts in this case...) This is from Oct. 2007

What happens when you put a 2 1/2 year-old in a big firetruck with lots of buttons and then ask him to look at the camera? I can tell you, he doesn't give a hoot about that camera.

So to assist the nice fireman (taking Polaroid pictures for the kids to keep), I stood next to him and called, "Harrison! Look a Baby Wolf!"

Harrison looked.
John Belushi would be proud of me.

Gotta love famous movie quotes! If you are not familiar with the movie 1941, it was directed by Stephen Spielberg and came out in 1979. Crazy! In college, several years later, we would use that quote to misdirect and steal food off of each other's plate. Nah, it didn't really work often, but it was a fun gag that never seemed to get old. Love those college days, too.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Best Shot Monday - Vintage Boy

I have a boy. I love artistic photography. The two don't always mesh, especially with my never ending, energizer-bunny channeling boy. He doesn't often want to stop and be a model - even when playing on his own; he has eagle ears, he hears the camera lens extend as it's turned on and he runs in the opposite direction. Literally.

Once in a while, though, I get lucky enough to get a shot like this.

(all he needed was his newsboy cap.)

Check out more classic shots at Mother May I today.

Sunday Prayer

I didn't post favorite phrases on Friday. I needed to rest. So I thought it only appropriate to share Harrison's first few unprovoked, completely voluntary prayers.

At our house dinner always starts with blessings over the meal and any other short prayer request needed at the time. Often when all 4 of us are home (The GID, Big Brother, Harrison and I), 3 of us sometimes play the "who's turn is it to pray tonight" game.

Well a couple weeks ago during that brief silence as we all held hands, just as Big Brother was about to pray, Harrison started...
"Dear Jesus, God, pray bless mommy, and daddy, and Big Brother, and Dukey. Bless our dinner. A-MEN!"
We were all surprised! Harrison often mumbles through the prayer with us and finishes with a big "A-MEN!", but that night he just jumped right in, took the reins and ran! It was so sweet and simple.

He has prayed a few times since. Last week when my throat was sore and my cold was kicking in, I was laying on the sofa and Harrison came over to me and asked, "Mommy may I touch yours throat?" "Yes." I answered.
And then he prayed.
"Bless Mommy, God, make mommy's throat ALL gone. A-MEN!"
Luckily God knows he meant sore throat!

Finally, today I was eating something and started choking a little. (Yeah, I know! Scary! A piece of food just stopped for a moment in my throat.) I coughed out the food, but as I was standing there concentrating on that moment and still coughing, I felt the little arm wrap around my leg and I heard a faint little prayer that included, "Bless mommy, -something, something- A-MEN!!" Then as he stood still hugging my leg he asked, "Mommy, you feel better now?"

More than you know... my little love.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Time Away

No Theme Thursday, probably good for me since I've been sick all week. But today we spent some time outside just being creative. What did you do today?