Saturday, October 31, 2009

What Kylie is reading- Week of Oct 26

I have just four books to share with you for this week.

Giraffes Can't Dance by Giles Andreae
My blog friend Soupy recommended this book to me and I'm so glad she did. It's a delightful story about a giraffe who thinks he can't dance and is teased at the annual jungle dance. But a cricket helps the giraffe find his song and his dance.

Keeping with the dancing theme, we read Hilda Must Be Dancing by Karma Wilson. This is a fun story about a hippo who loves to dance but really shakes the jungle. Her animals friends encourage her to try other things such as knitting and singing. But it's not until she finds water ballet that Hilda finds a way to express herself that doesn't also disturb the jungle. I liked all the various dance costumes Hilda wears. My favorite is the 70's costume.

From our own bookshelf we read Bear of My Heart by Joanne Ryder. Its singsong prose makes for a nice story before naptime. It's sweet but not too sweet.

Kylie's favorite book of the week was Hairy Maclary Scattercat by Lynley Dodd. It's about a dog named Hairy who likes to joyfully chase Slinky Malinki's cat friends. It's fun to read some parts of the story slow and other parts fast. Kylie especially likes it when cat Scarface Claw doesn't run from Hairy but chases him all the way home. Why, just today she looked at me and said, "Scarface Claw" with her serious look and then ran away laughing.

I hope you've read some good books this week too. I'll leave you with this picture of Kylie eating an apple taken on our backporch. Stay tuned for Halloween pictures!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Fish in the leaves

We found a new activity for Kylie's pool toys. Kylie tosses her plastic fish and mermaids into the big pile of leaves that I sweep off the deck

And then she jumps in to find them.

She swims with the fish.

And practices coming up for air.

But then magically, it's no longer the ocean or a pool with fish and mermaids. It's just a wonderful pile of leaves. Leaves to hug...

and to throw

and to enjoy.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

At the table

My darling Kylie eats like a bird. She eats healthily-lots of fruits and vegetables. But she eats so little. And in my desire to see her eat, I've formed some bad habits. Well, it's time to break them. So I resolve to no longer:

  • Say "Eat, eat, eat" in a vehement and/or pleading voice at every meal.

  • Load her fork and hold it to her mouth for her (even though this works and she'll take a bite).

  • Say any derivative of, "If you eat two more bites of meat/veggies, you can have dessert".

    Whew. Such bad habits. It's time to get over them. I'll just keep reminding myself that she won't starve.

    Parenting....the most rewarding and the most challenging thing I've ever done.

    Makes me want to go back here.
  • Tuesday, October 27, 2009


    This sweet little girl has a strange habit.

    She likes to lick the glass on our front door.

    And then smear her spit all over the glass with her hands.

    She calls it painting. She's a strange little critter. Of course, I'm the strange mommy who takes pictures of it.

    But speaking of painting, she did two watercolor paintings last week in art class.

    And two watercolor paintings at home. I was tickled at how well she got the process of swishing the paintbrush in the water, dabbing it in the paint and brushing the paper with the color. She is very conscientious about her color choices.

    Way to go Kylie!

    Here's two recent scrapbook pages:


    Monday, October 26, 2009


    Our landscape crew came by and blew away some leaves. And this is what our yard looked like just a few hours later.

    Dude! Mommy! There are a LOT of leaves falling. Yes, there are Kylie!

    I knitted Kylie this cap last year. I thought it would be fun to make extra long cap dreads with the extra yarn.

    Kylie thinks they are fun too.

    Needless to say, we've had lots of fun making leaf lines, trains, and collages.

    Floating them in any puddles she can find.

    Getting mildly reprimanded for splashing in puddles. She looks really scared of me and my "No splashing" remark, doesn't she?

    She's having so much fun with the leaves.

    You can even say.....

    They are mind-blowing.

    Saturday, October 24, 2009

    What Kylie is reading- Week of Oct 19

    My favorite of all of this week's library books was Cat & Mouse by Ian Schoenherr. This book has exquisite, expressive illustrations. It's a story about how a mouse and cat play together. It's absolutely delightful!

    First the Egg by Laura Seeger. I found this book via Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns. . What I liked best about it, is that after reading it together once, Kylie felt like reading it by herself and would say the words aloud.

    Perfect Nest by Catherine Friend was also found via the Mouse Grows blog. And it is a delightful story about a cat that makes a perfect nest to lure a chicken, to get her egg, to make an omelet. But a duck and goose also want the nest and the cat ends up with his hands full. But the best part are the delightful exclamations of the animals. The chicken exclaims "Caramba" and the duck's says "Sacre bleu" and the goose's cries a southern "Great Balls of Fire". This is very fun to read aloud in different voices. I've put it on our wish list.

    I think it was my blogging friend Soupy who recommended I check out the many Eileen Spinelli books starting with Silly Tilly. Silly Tilly is a funny goose. She upsets her barnyard friends with her shenanigans and they tell her to cut it out. But then they realize how much she made them laugh. So they apologize and she goes back to being her silly self. It's a lovely rhyming story with lots of exaggerated facial expressions on the animals. A fun read.

    Another Spinelli book we read this week was Hug a Bug. This is a simple story about how a hug can brighten anyone's day and how good it feels t hug. The soft colored illustrations made this a great book to read before naptime.

    The last Spinelli book we read delighted me way more than Kylie. I Like Noisy, Mom Likes Quiet is about a toddler raccoon who likes stomping and yelling and such. And about how his mom likes quiet things such as reading or knitting. The toddler does all the things his mom likes best to honor her for Mother's Day. This would be a great gift for any mom anytime but particularly for Mother's Day.

    Wiggle by Doreen Cronin was a fun little story about a wiggling dog. Kylie cracked herself up by saying, "Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle" for days after we read it.

    I think our least favorite book this week was Monster Toddler by John Wallace. It's about a boy who puts on a monster suit and acts out by making messes and misbehaving. His sister pretends to be a super hero and comes to his rescue.

    I hope you like some of these books that Kylie and I have enjoyed this week.

    Friday, October 23, 2009

    New Actions

    Thank you for your comments on yesterday's dog photo. I thought it was pretty plain and then boom! I get four lovely comments about it. I added a bit of blur to the dog photo using ittybittyactions sweet set blur and then "colored" it with Pioneer Woman's colorized action and added the darkened edges with her quick edge burn.

    I'm such a Photoshop nerd.

    I love to peruse the Flickr group The Maternal Lens. There are some excellent pro and amateur photographers that post their pictures there (way out of my photography league.) I go there for inspiration and to learn how to be a better photographer.

    And sometimes I hit gold. Like when I was admiring this photo and saw that it was tweaked using Soulful Actions. And the actions are free!. I downloaded the lot of them. Actions are recorded steps for either Photoshop or Photoshop Elements that change the look of the photo. The only way to learn the look of the action is to click on the action "play" button and see what it does.

    So instead of preparing a healthy dinner for my family, I played with my new, free actions.

    And we ordered pizza.

    I tried about 30 variations on the top photo. Fun, fun, fun!!

    Soulful Casual Vintage action used for that top photo and for this one.

    If you love taking pictures, you might want to invest in either Photoshop or Photoshop Elements and learn their programs. You'll have fun, I promise! But you'll also end up with dust bunnies floating around like tumbleweeds like I do.

    Stay tuned for What Kylie is reading....I've got some good books to share.

    Thursday, October 22, 2009

    Just a few things I've noticed

    As I'm writing this, Kylie is singing herself to sleep at naptime. Right before naptime, I was reading her two stories as is the norm. I had a huge coughing fit and had to step outside her room to get some water. When I came back she said, "Mommy, you need some protein." It's this type of out-of-the-blue comments that cracks me up about toddlers.

    Lately, I've noticed how considerate Kylie is. We were at music class this morning and the teacher handed out ribbon wands. Kylie got hers and asked me if I wanted one. I told her I was fine and the wands were just for the kids. Well that wasn't good enough for her. She walked to the teacher and said, "I want one for Mommy". The teacher explained that they were for the children. And Kylie replied, "It's important to share" with a tone of reproach as if she were saying, "You should have enough for the Mommies too."

    This same consideration goes for stickers (among other things). We've been making really great progress on potty training. At night, when Kylie gets stickers for a good job, she immediately shares them with us. She likes seeing Karen and I with the stickers more than she likes wearing them herself. She really loves her stickers but she loves sharing them with us more.

    Lastly, I've noticed how well Kylie is handling small objects. She's not tempted to put things small things in her mouth. She wanted some Little Pet Shop animals that she saw at Target and those toys are really small. I got them for her but have watched her like a hawk with them--ready to pounce if I saw her hands go anywhere near her mouth. But she just doesn't seem inclined to do that anymore. Same goes for her Hi-Ho Cherry O's and other small objects. I still watch her very closely but it seems like that everything-in-the-mouth, baby stage may be past us now.

    Here's a few recent pictures:

    And a video of Kylie singing "Row Your Boat" and "Twinkle, twinkle". A little hard to make out because her mouth is pretty full of Dibbs Ice Cream but we figured our family would like to see it.

    And a video of Kylie saying her night-time prayer. You would have to know what she's saying to understand her but I knew Karen's Mom would like to see it nonetheless.