Sunday, March 20, 2011


See the toy alligator in the bottom corner of this picture? Andrew really wanted to play with it. So after wondering why I kept calling his name and flashing a weird light at him, he focused.

Andrew has done a LOT of rocking on his hands and knees the past few weeks. He occasionally lurches forward and face plants. We, of course, do not giggle when that happens.

Unfortunately, he usually ends up moving backwards, out of reach of the toy.
But he gives us smiles anyway. Sweet boy.

And then we are joined by Gabe, in his Sunday finery. Too bad the picture of Gabe trying to lift Andrew turned out blurry - that would give you more of an idea of what really goes on around here.

Pop Rocks

I worked on potty training Gabe at the beginning of this week. One of his prizes was Pop Rocks. Neither of the kids have had those before, that I can recall. So they weren't sure what to expect...

They really liked them, but it apparently wasn't enough of a draw to help Gabe decide to only pee in the toilet. :)

Art Gallery Exhibition

On Friday, there was an art gallery exhibition at Naomi's preschool. (Translation: families got to go see all the projects on the wall!) Gabe played with all their toys while we wandered around and checked out some very fun projects.

Pointing to her green frog (on the brown background)

I didn't take a picture of most of the art, because we will be ending up with it in a few weeks. It was fun to get a closer look at the room and projects, and Naomi was thrilled to explain everything they had been doing.

Yellow River Game Ranch

A little while ago, just after the odd snowfall and week-long closure of everything in the cit, we headed a couple miles down the road to the Yellow River Game Ranch. Think outdoor zoo with animals indigenous to the area.

At the beginning...we had kernels of corn off a corn husk (bag in Naomi's hand) to offer to the animals, but they seemed to prefer the kids' wheat thins.

I was fine with the rest, but this part was almost freaky. Having grown up in the country and seen a lot of deer in action, I was unsettled to see a deer to walk up to a row of jumping, wiggling kids and eat out of their hands.

Feeding the goats...

Looking at buffalo...they have one of the largest herd east of the Mississippi.

We managed to bump into a few friends along the way, and it was a good way to spend a few hours after having been cooped up in the house for awhile. Note the snow on the ground in the pictures.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

While Daddy's Away...

Matt was at a conference in D.C. in the beginning of March. This is some of what we did while he was gone:

We jumped (actually, ALL of us did! Naomi was preparing for a hop-a-thon fundraiser at her preschool, so we set the timer for two minutes and tried to jump as many times as possible in those two minutes).

And then Andrew jumped some more, because he loves it!

We painted.

We visited Stone Mountain for the first time.
I didn't know this thing was still in existence, but it was hanging out in the parking lot at Stone Mountain. The kids thought it was pretty cool!
And then one of us got in trouble for using the furniture marker on his face...

When questioned about what he had used or how it had happened, he kept saying, "My don't know". Bill Cosby would say, "BRAIN DAMAGE!".

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Naomi's Birthday Celebrations, Part II

Naomi was eagerly anticipating her birthday celebrations. Good thing there were a few of them!

First is a picture of her birthday dinner.
She picked out everything for the table decorations.

Then a couple of presents were opened...

We don't have pictures yet of Grandma and Grandpa Merrell's gift. She opened them while on the webcam with them, so I completely forgot about pictures! They were a super fun doll family and a unicorn music box/jewelry box. I cannot even say how much she has enjoyed them!

This next picture of is Naomi on the phone with Grandma and Grandpa Jones, thanking them for the Shetland-sized unicorn.

Matt made the cake - a unicorn one at Naomi's request.

Finally... the day of Naomi's birthday party arrived!

First the kids decorated bags. Then they followed the treasure hunt clues which eventually led them to the back yard, where they discovered and bashed in a pinata (seriously! what a difference from the 3-year olds...these kids beat the daylights out of that thing!) and used the bags for collecting the candy.
When it broke, it didn't let everything out, so I continued to prod at it until everything came out. The kids didn't seem to notice more candy raining on their heads!

Waiting for cake...

More waiting for cake...

And the party ends with hide-and-seek in the front yard.