Tuesday, December 28, 2010


Ok, loyal readers of this blog can put away your torches and pitchforks. I have a new update. It was a fun filled holiday season, with everything going on, I didn't want to stop to write about it. A big thank you goes out to all of you that gave gifts to Sara Beth. This was the first Christmas that she understood that gifts were for her, and she enjoyed ripping the wrapping paper and tossing the tissue paper willy nilly.

So this is the executive summary of the past three weeks. Sara Beth's school had a Christmas party three weeks ago, and Heather was able to go. I knew that Sara Beth was a tall kid, but I had no idea that she was this much larger than the other kids her age.

Two weeks ago, we went to visit Heather's family out in Alabama. The trip went very well and we had a great time visiting with all Heather's family that we haven't seen in a long time, or in some cases, met for the first time. Of course, everyone was impressed with Sara Beth. Heather's granddad got a huge kick out of listening to Sara Beth sing Christmas carols and kept mentioning that he never had heard a kid her age carry a tune so well.

By the time we got all packed in the car and drove home, Sara Beth was so tired that she actually fell asleep in the back seat of the car! And yes, I did take that picture while I should have been focused on driving, but she was so cute curled up with all her toys.

Once we got home, we had only a couple days to fully recover before my family came in town to visit. The neighbor girls down the street brought her a princess outfit.

She also got her nails painted, though she was so excited to show the camera, she didn't actually hold her hands the right direction.

And on Christmas, she took a whole sheet of stickers and put them all on her hand. You can see her purple nails.

Sara Beth is enjoying the cats more and more every week. She has realized that chasing them around the house yelling "Come back! I want to pet you!" is not very effective. Instead, she asked to hold Catta, and I helped to capture the cat. And Catta actually might have enjoyed it a little.

While my family was down, my brother and I played a little old school Super Nintendo. Sara Beth and John played a little as well, though the competition was a little less intense.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

I'm Super Grover

Out of nowhere, on Friday, Sara Beth declared that we should now refer to her as "Super Grover". So, over the weekend, we would ask "Sara Beth, come clean up your toys." And she would respond, "ImSuperGrover"so quickly it sounded like a single five syllable word. Slowly, over the weekend, she corrected us, so that we would remember to call her by the correct name. Anything else would result in the response of "ImSuperGrover." The only variation came when Heather asked her, "Sara Beth, do you want milk or juice?" She replied, "ImSuperGrover... I want milk." To complete the Super Grover look, she brought a cape for us to attach around her neck:

Heather's well known dislike of squirrels has begun to color Sara Beth's attitude of the fluffy creatures. This morning, Heather asked "Do you like squirrels?" Super Grover replied, "No, I do not." "Why not?" "One bit me." "Oh dear! Where did it bite you?" "On my back. I have a owie."

We went to a Christmas craft fair over the weekend. Sara Beth climbed up a 30 foot inflatable and slid down it all by herself, though it might have been a little too exciting for her. She didn't want to go on it again.

Out of nowhere, Sara Beth has started taking her stuffed poodle with her everywhere. She got it for her first birthday, but has not really played with it since, until now. She will now bring it in the car with her, carry it around the store, and take it on walks around the house. We had to talk her out of sharing her food with it, and explained that pretend puppies needed to eat pretend puppy food only.

Ok, so when Heather first sent this picture to me, what do you think crossed my mind? After considering the fastest route to the emergency room, I read the note attached to the picture. It isnt a massive injury, just a red frosting holiday oreo.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Electronic Christmas

Christmas is approaching quickly. The day after Thanksgiving, we took the Christmas decorations down from the attic and began to put them up. Sara Beth got in the seasonal spirit by putting her winter coat on, even though it is plenty warm in the house (and outside for that matter). She helped to setup her six inch Christmas tree and the nativity scene in her room. We setup a foot switch for her Christmas tree so that we don't have to reach behind her book case to plug and unplug as it does not come with a switch, and Sara Beth loves to turn it off and on "All by herself."

So about 5 years ago, I got a singing dog as gift for Christmas. You press its paw and it will start barking out the tune to "We wish you a merry Christmas" and other classics. Last year, Sara Beth was scared of it. This year, she loves it and has claimed it as her new toy.

We tried to show Sara Beth the Wii controls the other day. It worked, sort of. She did not throw any controller through the TV, and she did get the general principles down, but she never made it past the first level of anything.

In the beginning of November, Heather got an iPhone. Now, Sara Beth can navigate through the phone without any help. She knows which folder contain her books and games and will open them and select the game she wants to play. When she gets bored, she will repeatedly press the one button on the iPhone until it exits out and brings her back to a point where she can select something new to look at. I'm not sure if Sara Beth or Apple's usability engineers are the ones who should get credit for that feat.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Doctors and decorations

One day last week, I came home from work and began to talk to Heather in the kitchen while she made dinner. For whatever reason, I decided to sit on the floor by the fridge while chatting. Sara Beth then came rushing in with a handful of her "doctor equipment." She dropped them on the floor by my feet and then ran back to her play room to retrieve a second handful. She then began to give me a checkup.

It was going quite well until she decided that I needed a shot of medicine in the eye. I probably spoiled her budding career in the medical field. Heather took some time from making dinner to capture the event.

Sara Beth loved the Halloween decorations that were up three weeks ago. Every night she would ask to go out for a walk to look at them. After they went down, we consoled her with the knowledge that Christmas decorations would be up soon. There are a few early over-achievers that have put their decorations up already (Heather would probably be one of them if I didn't tell her that we can only decorate for one holiday at a time and Thanksgiving isn't here yet.) So now Sara Beth goes for walks every evening looking at the twinkling lights and lighted reindeer. We told her that we will put our decorations up at the end of the week, and she is excitedly awaiting their arrival. As I put her to bed tonight, she informed me that we need to have wreaths on our windows too.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Dress Up

Typically, Sara Beth does not play with her dress up clothes, but since my parents were in town, she wanted to show off her whole play wardrobe. Though you cant see it, she is wearing a pink tutu skirt under her blue dress with the purple butterfly wings.

At around the age of three, I decided it would be fun to put on all my pants at the same time. I came down stairs and showed it off to my mom. Sara Beth decided to do something similar with all the hair clips in her closet, though she did need some of Heather's help to get them all in. This was in addition to the wings and multiple layers of clothes.

By the end of the box of hair clips, Heather was having a hard time finding space on Sara Beth's head for all of them. Sara Beth kept insisting that all the clips go in her hair. This is about half way through the box.

And here we have the final product. Sara Beth helpfully pulled them all out of her hair about 5 minutes later and put them back in her hair clip box.

As the weather cools, Heather begins to drink hot tea more often. Sara Beth excitedly requests to share. We keep having to remind her to "ask nicely" and use the word please. After a while, Sara Beth remembers to add the word to her request once or twice to each sentence. She will ask "Can I please have some tea please?" We do feel like we are making progress when, after Heather got all the tangles out of her hair, Sara Beth stood up, turned around, gave Heather a hug and said "Thank you for brushing my hair." And then she didn't even ask for any tea or candy!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Sara Beth trick or treated for the first time this Halloween. Our little ladybug , and she had grown old enough to understand how the holiday worked, and, unlike last year, she did not get sick. I rang the door bell at the houses as she did not feel comfortable doing that herself, but she had a great time getting all the candy. Fortunately, she forgot all about her bag of candy the next day, so we avoided having to care for a sugar infused 2 year old.

We went to the zoo last weekend to celebrate Heather's birthday. We took the train to avoid the traffic and the hassle of parking, and Sara Beth enjoyed the whole ride. She saw Heather's phone in the stroller and began to pretend to call people on it.

In the zoo, at the reptile house, I think it was about feeding time for all the snakes and lizards. They were all crawling around their cages and up the walls. Sara Beth ran from one window to the next looking at the active reptiles. The only place that she didn't want to go near was the alligators'.

Of all the animals at the zoo, Sara Beth liked the fish the best. I suspect it was because she could get up close to them. The fish tank had clear plexiglass sides right at Sara Beth's height. She ran around and around the aquarium following the fish as they swam right on the other side of the glass.

Heather now owns an iPhone and she loves it. It allows her to keep all her lists and calendar items all in one place. Sara Beth loves the phone too. Heather found an app that will ready books out loud. Sara Beth will sit with the device and press the button to turn the pages herself.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

New Songs

Sara Beth sings all sorts of songs nowadays.  Typically, it will be something like "Jesus Loves Me," and we can totally understand which song she is singing.  Which is useful when, in the middle of a verse, she will stop, look at me, and say "Daddy, you sing it now."  Even more problematic is the times when she requests a song but cannot communicate the title.  Last week, she asked me to sing the "Cherry" song.  I have no clue what that is.  I asked her to hum a few bars, but she just insisted that I sing the "Cherry Coke" song.   Heather had no clue what it was either.  The mystery persisted for a couple days, until, in a flash of insight, I realized that she wanted me to sing the song "Jimmy cracks corn" and that she just had never heard the name Jimmy before.  The next day, when she asked me to sing the "Crack Song," I knew what she was talking about.

In case you have not been keeping up with the posts, Sara Beth likes to try everything that Heather and I do.  So when she saw me eating a drumstick, she wanted nothing to do with the nice bite-sized pieces of chicken on her plate.  I gave her one of my drum sticks and she brought it to her mouth only to have the meat fall off the bone and into her lap.  Determined to eat holding onto the bone, Sara Beth began eating her mashed potatoes using it as a makeshift spoon.

Heather's birthday is tomorrow and Sara Beth is enjoying every minute of the preparations.  She loves to help her mom open presents.

And while helping me bake a birthday cake, she shared some of the batter.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Ever since Heather helped out a friend by picking her daughter up from school, Sara Beth has been enamored with the concept.  Four or five times a week for the past several months, Sara Beth will ask Heather "I go to school now?"  We had talked about putting her into school next fall when she is three, but since she was so insistent, Heather and I talked and decided we would let her go to a 2-day a week program.     

On Monday, Sara Beth was so excited for her first day that she posed for a picture without any of her usual antics.  Heather brought her up to the school, and Sara Beth walked right it, just turning around once to say "Bye."  Sigh.  They grow up so fast.

The day before, we sat down to eat dinner and watch the football game together.  Sara Beth really enjoyed watching.

Though at one point, she graped the whole bunch of grapes that we had brought for all of us to snack from, and began to feed them to herself, one handful at a time.

Sara Beth loves the Halloween decorations that are starting to come out.  Most evenings, after we have finished dinner, we will go walking around the neighborhood looking at the various displays that are out.  She likes the "creepy ones", but doesn't like the "scary ones."  She has not clarified the difference between the two, but if decorations are too scary, she will say "I not go this way.  I cross the street Daddy." She will then hold out her hand for us to cross to the sidewalk on the other side of the street to give the scary decorations some distance.  But she can never see enough, and we always have to come in before she is done.  Last night, as I was putting her to bed after bringing her inside, she asked to go see the moon, and I acquiesced.  Once outside, with the moon clearly shining in the sky, she said "Hm... I don't see it.  Maybe see it over there by decorations."  Very clever.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Tea with extra cream

What could be more fun then drinking tea? How about drinking tea with whip cream!  We had some whip cream and fruit and were eating as desert after dinner.  Sara Beth noticed that Heather was drinking tea with her desert and decided that she wanted some too.  The combination of sugar and tea was consumed in a matter of seconds.

On Saturday, one of Sara Beth's friends had a birthday.  Sara Beth sat still long enough to get her face painted as a butterfly.  She also got the party hat and a party favor bag.  She liked it all, but the bag of party favors, or "party bag" as she calls it, is her favorite by far.  She has carried that thing around with her for the past 4 days almost non-stop.  She burst into tears when she wanted to go find the "party bag" and I told her she needed to come brush her teeth.  We ended up compromising: she could hold the bag in her hands while I brushed her teeth, as long as she put it down before she went to bed.

We got a care package from Heather's mom.  Heather had mentioned to Sara Beth that a special surprise was coming in the mail today. When the door bell rang, Sara Beth sprinted to the front door talking about her surprise.  When she saw it was a package, Sara Beth declared it to be her birthday and that she was going to open her present.

There was a lot of cool things in there. But, of course, the gloves and purse were Sara Beth's favorites.   

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

End of an era

This week, Sara Beth convinced us that afternoon naps should be optional.  She has now grown out of the napping stage.  For several weeks now, nearly every day has included a battle to force her to lay still long enough for her to pass out.  This week we decided that it wasn't worth the battle.  We still make her stay in her room and be quiet for an hour or two in the afternoon, but we no longer force her to stay laying down in bed.  She will still nap on occasion and everyone is happier with the new setup; it makes the afternoons more pleasant.  

Sara Beth is quite a runner.  This evening, after dinner, she and I went outside for a walk in the wonderfully cool evening weather.  Sara Beth decided that instead of walking we should "run and chase."  We ran around several blocks side by side while she repeated "run and chase, run and chase."  By the time we were done, I suspect we ran at least a mile.  On a related note, she fell asleep rather quickly this evening.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Cookies and coconuts

Sara Beth has begun to sing to herself.  Unprompted at 7am, we will hear chorus to "Jesus loves me" repeated over the baby monitor.  It is really cute how she can't carry a tune.

We got a coconut from the store the other day and Sara Beth wanted to help open it up.  We carried it into the garage to smash it open with a hammer and screw driver.

Sara Beth, of course, wanted to use the hammer to crack it open, in her words, "all by herself."

Today, she got her flu shot.  In order to reward her for receiving it without much of a fuss, Heather decided to back cookies with her.  Heather handed the ingredients to Sara Beth, and she dumped them into the mixing bowl.  She then sampled to dough regularly while Heather placed them on the cookie sheet.

Once they got out of the oven and cooled off, Sara Beth and Heather sat down and had one to celebrate a job well done.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Dinner with friends

This past Saturday, Sara Beth and her friend Adrinna, had the opportunity to play together for most of the day.  When Sara Beth got her pink stuffed dog to carry around, Adrianna got the brown stuffed dog.  Sara Beth put on her fairy wings and Adrianna put on a yellow princess dress and both had a great time.  The only trouble came when they both wanted the same purse to accessorize their outfit.  It was resolved once I got another purse from Sara Beth's stash.  For lunch, they got fruit and crackers and a peanut butter and honey sandwich.

Sara Beth has been asking more and more about getting earrings.  Initially, Heather and I had said that we were not going to get Sara Beth's ears pierced until she was old enough to ask.  Well, now she is old enough to ask, but not old enough to realize what she is asking for.  Heather has some screw on earrings from my grandmother, which are rather uncomfortable to wear.  So Heather asked Sara Beth if she wanted to wear them, in hope that Sara Beth would realize that they didn't feel good and would stop requesting her ears to get pierced.  It didn't work.  Sara Beth loved them.  So, Heather took Sara Beth to the jeweler and had the lady their explain the process of getting her ears pierced.  Sara Beth's eyes got wider and wider and she decided that she didn't want to get her ears pierced after all; but she wore my grandmother's earrings for the entire day.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

After the rain

It rained quite a bit around here the past week.  Not quite as bad as the national news stations declared.  No one got washed away, though I did have to find an alternate route home the day it rained two inches in one hour as a road was flooded.  After the sun came back out, Sara Beth, Heather, and I decided to go down to the local creek to see the effect the rain had on it.  Sara Beth asked to bring all her friends.

And this is what we found.  Sara Beth is standing on the sidewalk as it goes towards what used to be the banks of the creek.  Sara Beth enjoyed throwing random debris into the water. As you can see below, she throws like a girl.

A little later in the week, Sara Beth asked Heather if she could sit on the counter and help make dinner.  Heather gave her a bit of cooked chicken to munch on while Heather concocted her recipe.  When Sara Beth asked to help stir, Heather needed to get another ingredient from the other side of the kitchen, so she let Sara Beth use the spatula.  Sara Beth tossed her half eaten piece of chicken into the bowl and mixed it in with the rest of the dinner before Heather could stop her.

One of Sara Beth's favorite recipes for us to make for her: mix 2 parts ice cream with 1 part M&Ms and serve chilled.  She consumed the entire bowl full in about 60 seconds.