Friday, February 27, 2009

I've been waiting for this moment!!!

Today something exciting happened! Elijah spontaneously read a book to Noah. Before breakfast, Noah plopped himself down in Elijah's lap with a book (which looked slightly ridiculous, I might add, as Noah is almost as big as Elijah) and Elijah obligingly read it to him. I've always said that it would be so nice when Elijah could read to Noah, and now that moment has finally come! This picture makes me laugh every time I look at it, as Noah looks so silly on Elijah's lap:

And here are a few more pictures. Elijah sounding out words (though he insisted that this was chapter thirty-one, rather than chapter one):

Noah, being his cute self:

Elijah and K., the oldest girl I watch: (she does such a better job of posing for pictures than Elijah does! When I get out the camera, Elijah starts making ridiculous faces.)

Noah and A., K's little sister:

And I guess that's all for now, since Blogger will only let me upload five pictures at a time, and it's time to go fix lunch. We're having fresh broccoli!!! The kids will be delighted. Every time I fix fresh broccoli, they practically inhale it. I finally got wise and started fixing two heads of broccoli instead of just one. After the broccoli, we're having what we call chicken enchiladas, though I think technically it would be a burrito. Those are another kid favorite. Better go get started.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

More boys

Since this blog is entitled "Sharon's Babies" I thought I might as well inundate my readers with updates about my boys for a while. :)

Noah has reached the point where he fully expects that I will understand everything he says, and gets frustrated when I don't. This morning, as soon as he climbed out of bed (at the blissfully late hour of 6:45--it was so nice to sleep in!) he was saying what sounded like "inna" or "anna" and pointing at the bed with an expectant expression. I could not figure out what he could be talking about. Finally I concluded that he was asking for a specific stuffed animal which he expected me to find under the blankets, but which stuffed animal? I have no idea which one he would have named "inna" or "anna" or "innit" or whatever it was.

Yesterday Noah was attempting to swing a short length of cord around in circles like a lasso. I heard a number of frustrated shrieks as he just couldn't get it to work. Finally I sat down and coached him till he got it--he was so proud of himself! Speaking of yesterday, that's Noah's new favorite word. He's been saying things like "Daddy deh-daday," to which I reply, "Yes, you did see Daddy yesterday."

Elijah is fixated on the planets! Before he had finished his breakfast, he was asking me, "Why do only three of the planets have rings?" "Why does Venus spin this way and all the other planets spin that way?" (demonstrating by waving his arms around). Etc. etc. We can see Venus in the evening sky (at least I think it's Venus) and he keeps telling me "I think maybe that's Pluto; I'm not sure," even though I've told him at least half a dozen times that Pluto is too far to be seen without a telescope.

Elijah's other interest is anatomy. The other day he created a lego creature that he informed me was a bear, complete with trachea, lungs, and a tailbone. If he makes one like that again, I will definitely have to take a picture! It's not the sort of thing you would recognize at first glance--you would definitely need him to identify the components for you--but it's neat that he attempted to include some of the internal organs!

The other night I found some candlesticks and candles in the basement, and thought, "Hmm, we might as well be using these." So we've been eating our dinner by candlelight the last week or so, with classical music (Mozart, the last few days) playing in the background...makes a very classy setting for our peanut butter and jelly sandwiches! LOL Not that we eat peanut butter and jelly every night, mind you, but I find myself more likely to cook a "real" meal at lunch time, and do something quick and easy for dinner.

If I forget to light the candles, Noah is quick to remind me, "Forgot someping. Forgot candles." He is also quick to remind me if I forget to give thanks for a snack! "Forgot to pray, Mama!" Good thing I have this little one to keep me on my toes!

These boys are growing so fast! I'm finally coming to accept the fact that Noah, almost two years old, is no longer my baby. Even the little ones I watch are all growing up; the smallest is now a year old, and walking. Good thing I will soon have two little nieces to hold and play with from time to time. :) Seems like everyone is pregnant these days--six family members and family friends will be having babies in the spring, if I counted correctly.

Well, Elijah wants a second breakfast, and so do I, so off I go.

Friday, February 13, 2009

this and that

What are the boys up to lately? Hmmm...

Elijah continues to learn to read. We make regular trips to the library. His latest favorite is a book about the planets (he can't read it all yet, but he likes to have it read to him). The last couple of nights he took it to bed with him because he said "When I wake up in the morning, you can read it to me the first thing." He loves our MegaBlocks/Duplo/whatever they're called. And he has been asking tough questions like the following: "I was just thinking about something. Do the worms like it when the birds eat them? I'm not sure about that." LOL That was a tricky one.

Noah is talking quite a bit now. He loves to be read to--his favorite is "Goodnight Moon" and he likes to find the mouse on every page. He is learning his colors and some of his alphabet letters--so far he knows A, M, and O. He recognizes the word "Daddy" which I discovered when I wrote it on a piece of paper to keep him quiet in church, and he pointed and shouted "Daddeeeee!" quite loudly. Any other word that I write for him, he assumes says "Mama." Ever since he got over his tummy illness, I have been hearing a lot of "Eat someping, Mama? Eat someping? Hunnngeeeee." His favorite foods are spaghetti and ketchup. He also likes applesauce which he calls applesalsa. Oh, and he is very polite, always saying "Peese" and "Thank you" or "No thank you," usually without being reminded (he learned that soooo much more quickly than Elijah did!) Last but not least, he has a cute sense of humor. Here is a conversation from the other day:
Me: Do you like to eat pizza?
Noah: Noooo!
Me: Do you like to eat peanut butter?
Noah: No! No thank you.
Me: Do you like to eat chocolate chips?
Noah: No thank you. Eat CARS! *laughs and laughs* Noooo, no eat cars. (said in a "how silly" sort of tone)

And what am I up to lately? Hmm...well I put myself on a strict schedule which has made me surprisingly productive. I made sure to schedule some crafting time too. :) Perhaps I'll post some pictures soon of some of the crafts I've been working on.

On Feb 10th we took our first walk to the park. (2.7 miles round trip, thanks again g-map pedometer) Elijah seems to have gotten out of shape over the winter--last summer he would happily run/walk the whole way there, but this time he prefered to ride in the double stroller, which of course made it much more challenging for me. I am still longing for a nice double jogging stroller, and if I ever find one used, I will buy it, even if I do have to resell it in five months when I move.

Last but not least, I got a new computer from a friend of a friend, whose workplace was selling their old computers for $25...this one runs sooooo much faster, and even my internet works better, strangely enough. Oh, and I discovered Google Analytics. Pretty nifty. I can track traffic to my blog and to my Etsy shop (yes, I have an Etsy shop, but there's nothing in it yet--when I put something in it, I'll post the link here).

Okay, that's all for now, and don't miss the next post about my new favorite piece of music.

All right, here it is

My speakers still aren't really working--I had to hold the speakers up to my ear to hear this, but it sounds good enough to do for now. I might edit to change the video later.

Saturday mornings in the summer, the boys and I like to go to our local farmer's market. The local farmers' market is more than just booths selling fruits and vegetables, potted plants, honey, and locally raised meats--there are also usually a number of musical performances to see. You might see anything ranging from the lone musician with his/her instrument and/or voice, to a small orchestra set up on the plaza in front of city hall, and everything in between. They might be playing anything from traditional folk music to jazz to classical. Suffice it to say that for those who appreciate good live music, our local farmer's market is quite a treat.

Anyway, one summer morning I took Elijah into city hall to use the bathroom. Sitting in the lobby was an Asian man playing an instrument that I'd never seen before, with a long neck and a bow (later I learned that it was probably a traditional Chinese instrument like an erhu). The music was unlike anything I'd ever heard, and breathtakingly beautiful. The acoustics in the building were perfect for a lone musician of that sort. Sadly, the farmer's market was drawing to a close, and after a few minutes he packed his instrument away. I left wondering what the instrument was and wishing that I could have heard more.

Then a few weeks ago I was listening to NPR late in the morning, and heard the following piece. The violin music sounds much like the music I heard that morning last summer. I was thrilled and of course wrote down the name of the piece to look up later. I'm a little disappointed that the instrument played here is the violin rather than the traditional Chinese instrument, but the violin here is played in a similar style and sounds quite beautiful. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Coming tomorrow!

Coming tomorrow: my new favorite piece of music--the Butterfly Lovers Violin Concerto by Chen Gang. I heard this on NPR and fell in love with it. I'll check out a few videos on Youtube and pick one to post tomorrow. Right now it's bedtime!