Monday, October 27, 2008

She loves her puppy

This is so hilarious, especially when she yanks on her ear!

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Sunday, October 26, 2008

more playing fun

......and not so fun.  Maddox and I were playing outside trying to stay quiet so Marshall could sleep (he's on nights now), and she fell on the patio and skinned her knee and a little bit of her cheek.  Then she cried about it for the next 2 hours, which of course- woke up Marshall.  Even after I cleaned her knee and put a Band-Aid on it, she would stop crying and then point at it and start crying again.  It was so cute I had to take a picture.  

We've had some nice sunny weather here recently, so we took advantage of Maddox's new mobility and took her to the park.  There are multiple parks in our neighborhood, but each has an age designation.  We took her to the under-5 year old park, which is the closest thing they have to a toddler play area.  Mdx can only swing and slide, but she loves it there!

Mdx's first slide!

On a warmer day- loving the swing.

Mama- what are you doing down there?

Climbing up to the slide-after she tries to clean off all the sand.

Still trying to climb the stairs.

She loves the view from the top- we have to make her sit down or she'd go face first.
The best part of our last trip to the park was what we saw on the side of the road on our walk home!  A family is moving, and they put their picnic table and small climbing/slide thingie on the curb since they didn't want it anymore.  So- we brought it home, cleaned it up, and now our backyard looks like this!  The best time to get free backyard play equipment is the Fall!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Pumpkin Patch


I love the Fall, it is my favorite season of the year!  I couldn't wait to take Maddox to a pumpkin patch and let her walk around and check them out.  She helped us pick one out to carve before Halloween.

The Patch, raising money for the Presbyterian Church Youth Mission Trip.

Maddox enjoyed playing with the straw.

But she really did not want to sit still for any pictures!

She's trying to peek over the top of all the pumpkins.

How many can I have?

How about this one?

Can you see my two top teeth?

What is this thing for?

It was pretty cold and windy, so we didn't stay very long.  But, we hope to make this a yearly tradition since Mdx really seemed to enjoy visiting with the pumpkins.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

new toys


We got some new alphabet blocks for Mdx, and showed her what her name looked like.

Unfortunately, she didn't care so much about spelling her name.

We bought a playhouse for Mdx from another playgroup Mama- and we put it together while she was napping.  Macy and Rocky (who we were dogsitting) approve and think it is very fun!

Once Mdx woke up she was so excited to see the playhouse!

Surveying her amazing backyard.

Want to come into my house?

We were folding laundry, and she tried to put on Marshall's gym shorts.  So, he got a clothes pin and pinned them on her.  She walked around very proud of herself.

Such a happy baby!  We are so lucky!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

new pictures

I finally got the pictures to upload!

This is after we got home from a play-date, that's why she has a name-tag on her back.  I also think it is funny her pants are falling off in the back.  She'll thank me for this picture one day I'm sure.  

This is a pic of Mdx with two ponytails!

We had a Hurricane (or was it a Tropical Storm?) come by a few weeks ago.  It was funny to hear people talking about evacuating and buying generators.  The stores were packed with people getting water, milk, and bread.....you'd think it was NC during a snow storm.  Anyhow, I wasn't worried because it wasn't a major Hurricane.  We mostly got some wind and rain.  Marshall, Maddox, and I enjoyed a nice walk around the neighborhood right in the middle of it.

Mdx under the rain guard in the jogging stroller.

Last weekend we went to the Newport News Fall Festival which was great!  I ran into a few other Moms I know from the area- which was surprising because of how few people I actually know here.  We saw a Chickahominy Indian doing a native dance, saw Revolutionary War re-enactors, walked through the craftsman area, and got some Pumpkin Butter!  Mdx rode in the stroller for a little bit, but mostly wanted to walk, and would have spent an hour going up and down this curb.
Who needs toys when you have a curb?

One of the last warm days for outfits like this!

I went to a few yard sales last weekend and found this really cute cloth playhouse that is perfect for holding some of her stuffed animals.  

And, sadly our fun playdate friend Eli and his parents Ian and Shannon are moving away!  Ian got a promotion that will allow Shannon to stay home full-time, and they'll be moving closer to both of their families in Michigan.  Still- it's hard to say goodbye to some of the first friends that I made here.....and one of Mdx's first baby buddies.  We'll keep in touch and hopefully see each other again one day.  I know as a military family we have to get used to saying goodbye and making new friends, but right now it's just not that easy. 

Eli just turned 1, and here is a picture of him enjoying his birthday cake last weekend.

And, Mdx during the present opening- she wanted to get down and play with everything!


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Oh yes


I know I'm the worst blogger ever, as evidenced by the number of people that have called to let me know I have not updated my blog!!  I have been focusing on managing day to day life and sleeping, rather than posting on here!  I'll try to catch you up, and not let it go another month before I post again.

After the party, Mdx started walking and school started for me.  We have taken a few videos since then, trying to capture some good walking, but mostly we get a lot of talking from her! Mdx still loves going to Kris's house on Mondays and Tuesdays, while I'm still adjusting to handing her over.  It's also infinitely more difficult to get ready for work, but I'm learning a few shortcuts.  I don't have many outfit choices, so that narrows down some dressing time.  I also put stuff in the car BEFORE taking the baby out, so I'm not juggling a bag, a violin, a computer and a baby on my way out the door.  Marshall has just switched to nights, so that will add a whole different complication that we haven't figured out yet.  I think basically it means we won't see each other much Saturday night through Wednesday afternoon. 

Here is a video of what poor Macy deals with on a daily basis.  Mdx thinks she is petting her, and luckily we have a tolerant dog.  The other day we were leaving for school and I said "Say Bye-bye to the puppy" and Mdx said "Bye-bye Pup-pup"!  I couldn't believe it!  She has said "pup-pup" since then, but not the two words together.  So cool.  Other than that it all still sounds like Chinese.

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My students are all turning out to be really neat kids.  I had one problem child, but after dealing with her for 4 weeks I kicked her out of the class, with the full support of the Administration.  I don't want it to seem like I can't handle discipline, but when an 8th grader has decided that they hate you, they hate playing viola, they aren't going to do a thing you say, and they are going to do everything in their power to distract and entertain the rest of the class....in my opinion there is nothing to do but kick them out.  Now that she is gone my Advanced class is such a lovely group.  They listen, interact, smile, and work hard every day- whereas when she was there the attitude varied from cautious and skeptical to downright disrespectful.  Now my main challenge is to find music that challenges all the different levels of players in that group, since they are 8th-10th grades.  I asked the 10th graders to be patient while I help the 8th graders catch up (and paired each of them with a younger student), and I asked the 8th graders to not get discouraged and just do their best, and before they know it they'll be just as good as everyone else!  I feel like our December concert is around the corner and we have a lot of work to do!

My 7th grade class (I call them Intermediate) are my smallest class, but the hardest workers.  Each one of them is so stubborn- I love it.  They see everything I throw at them as a challenge, and they are competitive with each other.  We've already had a few lessons on being respectful to each other, and saying things like "Good job" when another person finishes, even if they messed up.  I can tell that a few of these students are better than some of the kids in the Advanced class, which is awesome.

My 6th grade class  (Beginners) makes me feel schizophrenic.  They are sometimes so immature and need a lot of direction, so during those moments I have to be super-strict and a task master all the time.  Other times they get really frustrated, or are even in a funk when they walk in the door.  During those times if I stay a task master and strict I will push them away and not form any sort of relationship.  So sometimes we take a few minutes of our 70 min. class to just talk and tell stories and get to know each other.  I learned at my last job that moments like this are so valuable and must be grabbed when you get the chance.  They are learning to trust and respect me, and once I have THAT- I can get them to do just about anything.

Here is another video of Mdx talking up a storm while she watches football with Marshall.  She also loves sitting in her new chair that I got at a yard sale for $5.00!  It reminds me of an Ikea chair.
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Here is another video that shows her trying to get in the chair!

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I'm trying to upload pictures in addition to video, but it is not working quite right, I'll try and post again and see if that works.