Thursday, February 26, 2009

Pay It Forward

My dear friend from childhood,Kim , posted a blog entry today that piqued my interest. Anyone feel like playing with me?

Pay It Forward
Here's how it works. The first 3 people to leave a comment on this post will receive a handmade gift or treat from me. What it will be and when it will arrive is a total surprise. The catch is that you must participate as well. Before you leave your comment, write up a pay it forward post on your blog to keep the fun going. Then come back, let me know you're going to play and sit back and anticipate the arrival of your gift! Yeah, for homemade things and surprise packages!

I'm in the crafting mood, so this sounded fun to me!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Dissapearing Act

Now you see them:

Now you don't!

Jaina's two top front teeth have been loose since our dentist visit last October! We really thought they would come out before Christmas time just so we could sing Jaina the song, "All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth", but it was not meant to be. They finally came out last week! The first one popped out during school hours and Jaina loved the attention she got from her teacher, her classmates, and the school nurse. Then a few days later, the other one came out while she was accidentally kicked in the mouth at a local play place.

Jayce keeps tugging on his teeth and says, "Its gonna come out!!" We've tried telling him that he'll get loose teeth when he is 6 and that he has to be older. His answer is always, "Jayce is older, Mommy!! I'm 6 now!"

Monday, February 23, 2009

Mr. Bluebird

Title: Mr. Bluebird
Artist: Jaina Walker, age 6
Medium: Sidewalk Chalk
Photography: Mom

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Jayce Sings Guster

And just in case you aren't already a fan of the Boston-based band, here's Guster's own rendition of both "Satellite" and "Great Escape".

Of course, I'm kinda partial. I think Jayce's version is just as good :) If not better! Now if only I can get him to listen to Jump, Little Children, we'd be in business!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Cupcakes, Flowers, and Parties

Our Valentine's Day weekend started off with a bang on Friday morning. Jayce's SN 3K class had their second party of the year. I baked cupcakes, but didn't attempt a craft this time. My mom also got to come.

How weird is it that Jayce started crying when he saw me in his class? He didn't want to leave or go home or for me to leave, he just cried and whined the entire party. I had checked on him several times while I was setting up stuff before he saw me and he was fine. It took a while for him to calm down.

(the following picture is courtesy of Jayce, not me!)

Then later that afternoon, it was off to Jaina's classroom at school for her party. Brian took an extended lunch so he could come, too. Gray also came to do a small craft with the kids. Unfortunately, there wasn't really enough time to do the cards while the kids tried to eat and get ready for their buses. Jayce had yet some more sugar that day, which he definitely didn't need!

On Friday night, Gray babysat for us so Brian and I could go on our Valentine's Day date. I originally wanted to head to Greenville to either eat at The Italian Market and Grill or to eat at Carraba's (my fav Italian place) but Jaina and I got caught up at a friend's birthday party before hand and didn't get home and ready to go out until almost 7:30 PM. Instead, we stayed in town and tried a new restaurant on the Westside called La Taverna. Its chef is a native of Italy and the food was terrific. It wasn't outrageous with prices, either. We called it an early night and were home a little after 9 PM.

The florist delivered a huge bouquet of variegated tulips to me. Although we've had many a Valentine Day mishap with flowers in the past, its never been Brian's fault. He's always gotten me the exact flowers I've wanted at the time :) Now if only I could get him to get me flowers on a non-valentine day, we'd be in business!

Jaina received a single red rose bud and a new stuffed animal from her Daddy. The new bear's name is Allison, btw. I think. It may have changed by now. Jaina's carried it around everywhere!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Come on Upward Team Let's Score!

Jaina is the one on the end, closest to the camera. The little 2 year old next to her is a sibling of another girl on the team. The blond-haired ponytail girl next to her is Jaina's BFF Ashlan :) Her mom, Brittany, is the coach, and that's her little brother Kyler hanging out in the center of the court. Kyler and Jayce are friends, too :)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

A Nice Warm Spot

I think Alli has the right idea.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Blogger Valentines

While reading a recent post on Elizabeth Anne Designs, I discovered a fun opportunity to connect with some other bloggers through a Valentine Card exchange. I am not a creative crafter, but I do know how to follow instructions, so I went searching online for a template. I found these hand-stitched valentines at Martha

I started out by sorting scrapbooking paper into different color schemes. Then I cut out 6 color coordinating hearts for each card. I made 10 cards in all.

My hand hurt after cutting out all those hearts!

About to start "sewing":

The needle was used to mark the holes where the thread needed to go:

I had to use scissors to widen the hole for the waxed linen to go through:

Hand threading the waxed linen.

The finished project:

Since it was a blogger thing, I wanted to include the name and web address of my blog. I used a stamping set of letters my mom just gave me.

I found a relative quote while searching online to add to the inside of the card. I wanted to find something to do with love, but not necessarily romantic love:

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Moon Sand

I'm sure if you are a mommy and you read my blog, Moon sand is old news to you. You've already developed a great dislike for the messy stuff, probably a direct correlation to how much your kids love it :)

If you are one of the few blog readers that don't have the pleasure (or challenge) of having two legged babies (as opposed to 4 legged fur babies) then you might not realize what Moon Sand is exactly. Think of sand. Think of colored playdoh. Now mix them together. And slap on a claim that the stuff never dries out, and you've got Moon Sand.

My son Jayce has been diagnosed with Sensory Integration Dysfunction (also known as Sensory Processing Disorder) even before he received his diagnosis of autism. I'm pretty new to the whole sensory issue thing, so I was pretty clueless at why Jayce wanted to stay home all day, stopped eating anything but pancakes, and screamed constantly. Looking back now, it was most likely related to sensory problems. Jayce couldn't handle the cacophony of noises the outside world brought to him. He freaked out at the sound of the blender, vacuum, or garbage disposal. He couldn't eat anything that looked or smelled or tasted "funny" to him. It would literally make him gag. And the poor boy probably felt so gravitationally insecure, which paired with his speech delay so he couldn't even tell us he felt bad, its no wonder why he screamed all the time.

Jayce receives Occupational Therapy for his sensory issues and wow.... I cannot even begin to tell you how helpful it is. He has been a different kid ever since finding the right therapist to work with him. Play-doh has long since been a therapy tool from day one. At first, Jayce cried when he saw the tub. Then he would tantrum uncontrollably when it was taken out of the tub. The first time it touched his skin, I thought we had scarred him for life! Then, a few weeks later, he would touch the stuff just to get it off the table and back into the tub. Then a few months later, he was using a stamp to make a Spiderman logo in the play-doh, all the while relieved that he did not have to touch it at all!

Jayce has been in therapy for over 18 months now and play-doh is one of his favorite things to play with. So we've since branched out and include play sand, floam, silly putty, and moon sand in our repertoire. Who has sensory issues with play-doh? Not Jayce any more :)

Monday, February 09, 2009

Happy Birthday Gray!

We had a fun-filled birthday weekend with my mom (otherwise known as Gray, by my kids). Today, Monday, February 9th, is her actual birthday, but its just too hard to do things during the week at night with the kids' early bedtime. So, we celebrated this past weekend :)

The kids and I accompanied my mom to a local Art show where she hung a piece she did back in the 80's. It was so nice to see some old friends from college and two of my former professors, too!

The kids were so well-behaved at the elegant event!

There was a live band that Jayce was just entranced with.

The pen and ink drawing was created as a homework assignment back when my mom went to Art school in Florida. She had to take 4 different photographs from a magazine to create a collage.

Sorry, mom. I couldn't swing the $200 it cost to actually purchase the drawing.

Then, Jayce spent the night for the VERY FIRST TIME at Gray's house, all by himself :) He had so much fun and didn't miss me one bit (Why am I not surprised?) That left Brian, me, and Jaina free to go bowling with some friends. Those pics will be up later this week.

On Sunday, Gray came back over to our house for dinner. We surprised her by taking her out to eat instead of having me cook. Then we came back for cake and ice cream. I made the cake myself, and made homemade vanilla butter cream icing. Jaina helped me color some of it using food dye to make the dots. I think I need to take a cake decorating class! It tasted great, but wasn't all that great to look at :)

Friday, February 06, 2009

Upward Cheerleading Game Three

Because we feel that sitting in one spot in a crowded gymnasium for over an hour would be too much for Jayce to handle, Brian and I have to alternate taking Jaina to her games. Hence, you will not see any pictures of Game Two. For Game Three, Jaina's best friend Ashlan spent the night the Friday before so I had two little girls to get ready for the big game.

I think Jaina enjoys cheering more and more as she learns more cheers and gains confidence in the ones she already knows, however, I still think she liked soccer better. When asked what Spring sport she'd like to try for Upward, she said, "FLAG FOOTBALL!" so I'll have to find out if they let girls play :)