Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Friday, October 19, 2007

Budding Songwriter

Noah has been playing with his toy guitar quite a bit lately. This morning he was making up songs and I was quite impressed. His songs had rhythm, rhyme, flow...he was really good! I'm going to figure out a way to record them so I can have them on this blog. But for now, here are some of my favorite lyrics.

Oh tricky, tricky, tricky,
One, two, three.
You like to play tricks on me.
But tricky, tricky, tricky,
Count on me,
I'll get you back with a trick, you see.

Don't pull my hair.
Don't try to scare.
Just beware.

Oh tricky, tricky, tricky
One, two, three.
You like to play tricks on me.
But I'll trick you back,
Ha ha hee
'Cause I'm more tricky than you!


The ants have been replaced. By squirrels.

Not on our countertops, thank God, but in our attic. Or rather, inbetween the old roof and the new roof.

Now that the weather has been rainy we've been hearing scurries and scampers on the ceiling above the two smaller rooms. One day I saw a cat jump off the roof right after hearing the noises and I thought, "Oh, it must have been the cat on the roof." But that night we heard the scuffling for a long time and Geary thoroughly checked out the roof. No cats.

The next morning Geary checked around the house to see if there were any places where critters could get it. Sure enough, he saw two squirrels climbing into the space between the old garage roof and the new house roof. He's been putting up mesh screen to keep them out.

Now the only fear is--what if we're actually screening them in?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Happy Birthday, Grandpa Bob!

The best kind of Grandpa likes talking to you on any kind of phone.

The best kind of Grandpa helps you chart your course.

The best kind of Grandpa shares important information with you-- like the best place to get a haircut.

The best kind of Grandpa knows how to play with fourteen children at a time. Which is probably a helfpul skill to have with thirteen grandchildren.

The best kind of Grandpa doesn't get mad when you smash his nose in...

...or when you take pictures that make him look as if he is twisting your head.
The best kind of Grandpa is happy to read your favorite stories.

The best kind of Grandpa is worth imitating....

... in every season.

The best kind of Grandpa is a kid at heart.

Happy Birthday, Grandpa Bob! We love you!

Monday, October 15, 2007

My First Sweet Potatos--by Tobin

Community Event--The Fire House

Last week at the library's Story Time, Firefighter Chris told all the kids to come on down to the Newberg Fire House for hot dogs and free fire truck rides. I asked Noah, "Would you like to do that?" He nodded and said, "Yeah, but I just want to go there for the food." You would think hot dogs are a rare treat...but Grandma and Grandpa Bob know better.

Anyway, we went. They gave each kid a goody bag filled with safety information and stickers and planning sheets for how to evacuate your home in case of a fire. They also gave each kid a set of ears that said, "I'm a good neigh bear" from State Farm Insurance.

Noah declined the ears in favor of his fireman hat but Toby totally pulled off the look.

We got to see the firefighters light a whole room on fire and watch how quicky the fire and smoke grew. The room was completely consumed by fire in less than three minutes. It was a good lesson on how little time you have to actually get out of the house once the smoke alarm starts blaring.

We also got to ride on top of a firetruck! Later when we were looking at the pictures Noah asked me why I didn't take a picture of the actual truck. I said, "Um...because we were on the truck." And also because this was the last picture I could get before the camera's batteries died. I really need to just start carrying extra batteries with me.

And, yes, the hotdogs were good.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

At the Lego Store

We went to Washington Square Mall yesterday, and while Geary was looking for a new shirt and tie I took the boys to the Lego store. They had a bin full of Lego People parts and I told Noah he could build a guy and and buy it. When we were ready to make the purchase Noah placed all the pieces on the counter and solemnly said to the cashier, "It's a race car driver and he has two helmets." The high school aged boy behind the counter assumed Noah's facial expression and serious tone and replied, "Well, safety first, right?"

I appreciated the way this young man talked to my son, as if my four year old was the most important customer that day. Once the parts were rung up, paid for, and placed in a bag, the teenager said, "Here you go, sir!" and gave the bag to Noah. And then... Noah made his day.

"Sir?!?" he exclaimed, giggling. "I'm not a man!"

"You're not?" asked the teenager, quickly searching my son over for a sign that he was a girl and not a boy.

Noah shook his head, "Of course not! I'm a super-hero robot!"

The Lego Store manager overheard and jokingly asked, "How could not tell that?" His relieved employee grinned and said, "I don't know but I'm so glad I stayed at work just for this moment." Then he turned back to Noah and said, "Well, have a great afternoon fighting crime and evil mad scientists and stuff like that."

Noah nodded and replied with a serious, "Thank you."

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Dear Garyanna,

Thank you for carrying, birthing, and raising such a wonderful man. It is his birthday but I feel like the one who has been given a gift. He was your miracle first and now he has become mine. I am eternally grateful to you for bringing Geary into this world.


Your Other Daughter

Happy Birthday, Geary!

One of the most romantic things a man can do for a woman is to be caring with her children--to be someone she can trust, someone she respects, someone who is there for her through the good times and bad...

Just by being who you are, you have made me so happy. On your birthday and everyday, I want you to know I love you with all my heart. And I choose you and will continue to choose you as we proceed on our walk together in the way. I'm so glad our feet met.

Victory with Suave

Well, either the little scout ants have gone back to colony screaming, "Run for your lives! There's a giant looney with a can of Suave Sleek hairspray up there!" or we've wiped out most of the colony. After my hairspray attack we only ever saw one or two ants at a time. We would spray them and then pick up their little bodies with a papertowel and throw them in the garbage. I keep checking the garbage to see if any little undead zombie ants are marching out of it but so far there's been no activity in there. Also, after every hairspray blast we've been scrubbing the countertops again so I'm sure that whatever it was that attracted them in the first place is gone.

Thank you all for your ideas and suggestions. I'm still going to go out and get some ant traps and I'm still going to try the baby powder, castile soap, and windex. Because I just want to be sure that they aren't coming back. Besides, I like the idea of doing something Big Fat Greek Wedding and I am certainly not going to be wearing any of those dresses or eating "Moose Ca-Ca" so this works. Also, thank you for not thinking that I am dirty or that my house is dirty.

I'm not really afraid of bugs but they do give me the heebie jeebies. And I do have some highly illogical thoughts about them. For instance, I HATE killing spiders. Do you know why? Because their spider brothers will somehow know and then they will all come and attack me in my sleep. And I won't be able to sleep anyway because I'll keep feeling something crawling on my skin. But killing ants? Do it! I have no fears of ant brothers coming to attack me in my sleep. Of course, I'll be sleeping with my can of Suave...I wonder if it kills ants as well as Matrix?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


Help! We have ants! I don't know where they came from or how they got inside but last night and this morning there were hundreds of them all over our kitchen countertops. Geary killed an army of them last night but this morning there was another troop.

I freaked out. I grabbed a can of hairspray (yeah, I know. It just seemed right at the time) and blasted as many as I could. Then I scrubbed the countertops and nabbed a few stray ants with some papertowels. For the past hour there hasn't been another invasion but I've still caught a few more strays. I'm afraid that if I leave they will come back in a mob again.

So what do I do? Anyone know how to take care of ants so they never come back? It's soooo icky!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Why Enunciation is Important

Jeana: Toby, I'm going to make some carrots for you.
Noah: No! He doesn't have any teeth!
Jeana: No, I'm gonna cook 'em and mash 'em up.
Noah (horrified): What?!?! Don't cook Toby! I don't want a mashed up brother!
Jeana: No, no! I'm going to cook them, the carrots! Not him.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

The Living Room

I'm still trying to figure out the best furniture arrangement for this room but this is how it looks right now. It's very...beige. We need some color and some art to liven it up, I think.

But we have nice big windows and lots of natural light. See our router?

The Kitchen

Sorry about the glare on our gorgeous new stainless steel refrigerator. It was a gift from my parents (thank you, thank you, thank you! We love it!)

When we were in Astoria for my birthday, Debra and I went to several antique stores and I found a couple white things for above the cabinets. I love how it looks! I need to find some fabric to make a curtain for the kitchen window.

Our breakfast table area. The kitchen is actually quite big and as you can see from the other picture we have our office in there, too.

Cute built in shelves around the door the bathroom. I still have to get these organized but I love the charm they add to house.

The Dining Room

Check out our new beautiful table and chairs! We're on the hunt for the perfect light fixture for this room. Then we need to paint it and add some art.

The Master Bedroom

It's small. But we can fit our bed and stuff in there so...it works. Eventually we're going to paint this room but it's not very high on the priority list right now.

That big red rectangle is actually a cut out "nook" in our wall. I painted it one day with some acrylic craft paint that I already had. The effect is pretty cool. It looks sort of like plaster. I saw a pretty iron wall sconce candle holder that I need to measure, but if it fits I'd like to put that in there.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Hint, Hint

Noah: I can't find any clean pajamas.
Jeana: Oh, sorry, they're all in laundry.
Noah: Still? Well, what I am supposed to wear to bed?
Jeana: Just wear the pajamas you wore last night. It takes a long time for pajamas to get dirty.
Noah: Yeah. And it takes a long time for pajamas to get clean, too.

The Boys' Room

Noah told me he wanted a blue room so we got some paint chips and I let him choose the exact color. He picked "Lakefront" by Glidden. We also found some cool jungle animal wall stickers at Target and Noah helped me put them up. They are removable and repositional so if we ever rearrange or decide to change the room decor it's no big deal.

Yes, the boys are sharing a room even though we have three bedrooms. For one, I've read countless studies which show that young children sleep better when there is someone else in the room--even a pet. And Noah definitely sleeps better when Tobin is in there. You would think it would be harder for him to sleep with people coming in and out of the room all night (for feedings) but I think he actually feels safer knowing that we're close by. Also, it was important to me to be able to have a guest room--because I really, really want my family and friends to feel free to come visit us without feeling like they would be in the way or taking up too much space. Now we have a space just for you! And our treadmill...

Tobin's corner. By the way, he loves mobiles! We have one from Haiti (thank you, Becca!) over the changing table and a musical one over the crib.

Noah's corner. He is super thrilled to be allowed to open and close his shades. Don't worry, we're going to install a cord cleat so it won't be a safety hazard for my precious baby.

It's hard to tell, but the trim and his closet doors are actually khaki/tan colored. The whole house interior was painted white with tan trim. I was going to paint the trim white but when I finished with the blue I really liked how the tan went with it so I left it.

Noah's reading corner. Can you see the little snake sticker on the bottom of the closet? When you open the closet door it "moves" and Noah thinks this is just about the cleverest thing ever.

The Main Bathroom

The bathroom has a bright aqua colored countertop so we decided to make it work by going for an upscale beach theme (Think beach hotel/resort as opposed to beach shack). I painted the walls a light sand color (hard to tell in the pictures). Actually, it's called "Raffia Cream" but it was on the same card as "Gobi Desert" so that counts as sand colored, right?

We're also planning to stain the cabinets darker (like walnut or mahogany) and add knobs. Eventually we'd like to frame out the mirror using molding that will be the same color as whatever we stain the cabinets with. The far left cabinet is darker because of a stain experiment. The middle cabinet was a "white-wash" experiment (too much beach shack, not enough beach resort). The knobs will be brushed nickel to match the faucets and light fixtures.

Aqua and gold shower curtain that is really wrinkly. I thought the wrinkles would go away after the curtain had been hanging for awhile but it's been almost three weeks. Guess I'll have to iron it--ha! As if! I also have a shadow box project I'm working on for above the towel bar. I'm planning on using starfish, sanddollars, seashells and sand.

There's a nice big linen closet in bathroom that is storing linens (genius!) plus all my art supplies and sewing stuff (Not that I am any good at sewing--yet!)