Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Like Father, Like Son

I apologize in advance for the lack of pictures in this evening's post. I know that photos and videos are the highlight of my blog, but sadly I have no good ones to share (unless you would like to see some pictures of a creepy spider that briefly took residence on my front porch a few weeks ago).

I do, however, have some charming Allen stories for you, so I will dive right into those:

Mommy and Allen went in service yesterday (Nana was there too). With the exception of throwing himself on the floor during the prayer (and saying "boom") he behaved pretty well during arrangements. Afterwards, he went up to just about everyone, said "Clap?" and gave each brother or sister a high five. Then he threw his arms up in the air and said, "Yay!" Talk about enthusiasm for the ministry! It appeared to put a smile on everyone's faces.

Allen was a very good boy for field service. He rode in his stroller without whining, and helped Mommy and Nana by announcing the color of the house or car we were approaching.

Today, Mommy, Daddy, Nana, and Allen all went to Charleston for the day. Daddy and Allen went off to the Aquarium, while Mommy and Nana shopped for Nana's house (oddly enough, Allen is the one who came home with the most loot). Allen was a very good boy for Daddy at the Aquarium, and was in good spirits for the whole afternoon, in spite of not having a nap. At one point, we got caught in the rain, which Allen found tremendously amusing. Every time the rain hit his face, he laughed and laughed. At least one of us was having fun.

We stopped at Jim-n-Nick's (a barbecue place) for a late lunch. Allen decided to tell the entire restaurant everything that was on the walls ... "CHICKEN ... PIGGY ... BOAT." Then he decided to call to each of us and say, "Where are yoooouu?" (again, this was done so the entire restaurant could hear). But the highlight of our lunch would have to be when Nana informed me that Allen had a bit of gas; immediately after which, Allen made, well ... that face. We all said, "Uh-oh" and Allen said, "Big poopy! Goodness!" And then laughed hysterically (how could we blame him, when we were doing the same?)

Some of you may think that's why this blog entry is entitled "Like Father, Like Son," but that story is not the reason .... Since Allen and Daddy have been spending more time together in recent days, Allen is picking up on some of Daddy's speech. Don't worry ... he's not saying any bad words, but he is yelling at cars to "Ome on!" (translation: Come On! PopPop would be so proud); saying "Awww nuts!"; and "Cheeese!" (which is either Cheese or Geeze, depending on the situation).

Those are all the Allen stories I can think of this evening. I'm sure I'll have more soon though. And since I know you all are dying to see ... here is the picture of the creepy spider (and yes, he is eating a bug). XOXO and goodnight!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Snuggle Mommy

I just got home from a last-minute business trip to Pennsylvania. I'm exhausted. I ended up getting home about three hours after I was supposed to due to various US Airways delays (fun). Anyway ... I'm very glad to be back home with my boys. It was a difficult few days for all three of us, I think.

Allen did not like it that Mommy wasn't around. Daddy said that he walked around saying, "Mommy care" (carry), and then when I didn't pick him up he would start to cry. Wednesday morning when Allen woke up, Daddy brought him into our bed, like usual. Allen crawled to my side of the bed, and felt around for me. When he realized Mommy wasn't there, he just starting bawling. My poor little monkey :( He was very happy to see me this afternoon at the airport.

After I got Allen ready for bed tonight, I asked him if he wanted to snuggle with Mommy. He nodded and smiled, and said, "Snuggle Mommy." He was so excited. So we sat in our glider, and Mommy sang "Life Without End At Last" (at Allen's request) while Allen put his head on my shoulder and his arms around my neck. I did not want to let go.

Since I had this last minute trip, I didn't get to blog on Tuesday, which means I have pictures and a video to share with you, as well as a couple cute stories.

Tuesday morning the three of us went to the park because it was a fabulous Fall morning. We rode our bikes over, and then Allen tossed around tennis balls. The kid has a pretty good arm!

Some highlights ...

After the park, Allen and Daddy dropped Mommy off at the dentist's office. Since they were there, Dr. Zimmer and his wife encouraged Allen to ride in the chair and to look around. At first, Allen just pushed the buttons to make Mommy go up and down in the chair, but he did eventually take a ride with me. Once he got there, he did NOT want to leave. They ended up staying for about an hour, with Allen running around and playing the whole time. I was pleased that it didn't freak him out!

Tuesday night we went to Nana's for dinner. One of Allen's toys there is a set of nesting/stacking boxes that are based on Eric Carle's books. We spent about 45 minutes stacking and knocking these things down. Here's a cute video of it ...

My last story is about the Bible Story we read on Tuesday night -- Daniel in the Lion's Pit. After we read the story, we reviewed it with him. Then, we asked Allen, "Why was Daniel saved from the lions?" And Allen said, "Hovah shut lions" (translation: Jehovah shut the lions' mouths). Brilliant!

Goodnight loves ... I'm going to bed!

Monday, September 22, 2008

New Toys, Cous cous, Singing

The first day of autumn was an interesting day in the Craig household. Daddy hurt his back, so he took a muscle relaxant ... so he was pretty much out for the entire day. Allen was running a low-grade fever ... so he was kinda sweet and snuggly, kinda whiny, kinda holy terror. Mommy was tired. Running around after both her boys.

This morning we watched one of Allen's new presents (we went to Target with Nana last night, so the kid scored bigtime) -- Elmo's Potty Time. For the first two-thirds of the movie, he was riveted:

but then he got distracted by his Tonka trains (another present from Nana). Then, he decided to start playing with his Handy Manny Toolbox ...

Allen also played with Rocket, his markers, and demanded CHICKEN for lunch. Finally, after a long morning, he took a nice long nap.

When he woke up this afternoon, we decided to look at the Disney World website, since we're going on our first trip in February! He got very excited at the prospect of meeting Mickey and Minnie. I can't wait to see him there.

(In the meantime, Daddy is still passed out on his chair). I was going to take Allen with me to meeting tonight, but after throwing a massive tantrum, I decided he still wasn't feeling well, and that I should stay home with him.

While I ran out to get an onion and garlic from Nana's house, Daddy made some cous cous. Allen LOVED it (who knew?). Here he is eating it with some green beans.

After dinner, we enjoyed some songs. We sang, "Spidah," "Fishies," and "Tinkle Tinkle." At one point, Allen's antics caused me to forget the words to "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star." So I'm including that video too. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Watchdog, Spidah, Sicky

My boy is sick ... my love, my baby, my sweetness ... is sick. He sounded stuffy after his nap this afternoon. He was clingy and sleepy when Mommy got home from work. He cried hysterically at every little thing. He had a fever of 101.5. My poor little guy.

For those of you who aren't overly familiar with Allen's medical history, he's a pretty healthy kid. He ran a fever when he got his first shots. He ran some low-grade fevers when he was teething. He's only REALLY been sick once. I don't like it when he's sick. It hurts my heart. If I could, I would climb into his crib with him and hold him all night ... but I don't think I'll fit. I hope he sleeps, and I hope he's better soon. Because until he is better, Mommy will worry and fret and work herself into a tizzy. I guess that's what Mommies do.

In one of his contented moments this evening, he ate "pizzie" and made Mommy sing "Spidah" (Itsy Bitsy Spider) -- to which he does the hand motions -- and "Fishies" (Down in the Meadow ...) to which he sings "Boop boop" and "Shoo" (which he revs himself up for ... quite hilarious). One of these days, I'll get it on video for your enjoyment. He also called Mia "crazy." The things we are teaching this child!

After he got his tubbies and went to bed, Mommy, Daddy, and Mia retired to the upstairs porch to once again enjoy our new furniture. We studied our WatchTower and did our Bible reading by candlelight. It was relaxing and lovely and I think the best environment for personal study since you get to enjoy Jehovah's creation so much. The crickets and frogs provided the music; the stars twinked in the sky; it was an occasion on which I was very aware of Jehovah's creation and presence.

Mia was our watchdog ... quite humorous to watch a teeny little Chihuahua run around growling at every little sound she heard. I'm not sure what she was protecting us from, but she was quite diligent ... until she realized that I had olives in my martini. Then she was useless ...

Goodnight my friends. Love you all!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Ta-La, Jump, Fixing it

Allen has taken to saying "Ta-la!" instead of "ta-da." And when we say it the right way, he corrects us, and says, "No. Ta-la." He runs around the house, the yard, the kingdom hall ... wherever, and says, "Ta-la!" We don't know where he got it from, but it sure is adorable.

Last night at the meeting, he decided to show his teenagers his new jumping skills. "Jump!" he said to the group. And, one of the young brothers did, indeed jump (well, actually he just went up on his tip-toes, since a teenage boy jumping in the hall would be pretty disrespectful). With such a positive response, he decided to show off his break-dance moves. Once again, we're not exactly sure where he got this from, but it is quite entertaining.

We got our porch furniture tonight! So after dinner, we put it together, and Allen "helped." He hammered things, measured things, and supervised Mommy and Daddy. He kept saying, "Fix it!" We definitely need to get him his own tool kit.

Here's a picture of me enjoying our porch furniture (finally!).

That's about all for tonight ... have a wonderful evening, my loves!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Answering, Baba Sheep, Making Friends

Allen and I took a trip to Pennsylvania over the weekend (leaving Friday and returning Monday). We stayed with Papa and Aunt Kissy joined us! We were there in honor of Jenn and Jeff and their upcoming bundle of joy! It was a crazy-busy weekend, but we had a lot of fun.

Sadly, I forgot my camera, so I have no pictures as of yet. But hopefully I'll get some soon to share with you. Allen had a lovely time with Kissy and Papa, and was ridiculously well-behaved and charming.

On Sunday, we had a mini family reunion at the meeting. Mom-mom, Effie, Cowin, Aubey, Missy, and Owen. Allen was so excited to see Cowin, that he sat quietly on his lap for almost the entire meeting. He was excessively good. He event attempted to answer! He practiced the answer, "prayer" that morning while we got ready. However, he has never answered into a microphone before, so he was pretty mesmerized by it. Rather than say his answer, he just breathed into the microphone ... Mommy was so proud of her future stalker/prank caller.

Yolonda threw a lovely shower for Jenn. The food was delicious, and I was thrilled to be there with my girls, and to see Jenn while she was still pregnant. She's beautiful, and glowing, and has the most perfect round belly. I can't wait to meet little Amy! Yolonda was once again the hostess with the mostess, making yummy food and entertaining us with her great stories and contagious laugh.

Allen was reunited with his future wife at the shower, too. He and Ava played and played ... chasing each other and playing with toys, and singing, and reading books. It was fabulous to see Allen interact so much with another little one. I'm glad they had so much fun together.

Sadly, our trip is already over, and we're back home. We had book study tonight at our newly remodeled Kingdom Hall ( I hope to post some pictures of it sometime this week). Four book studies met together tonight, so they used the opportunity to check out our new sound system. Allen had prepared another answer for this evening -- love (or as Allen says, "yove"). But since there was another microphone involved, all we got was the breathing again. About two minutes after we had moved on, he very loudly said, "YOVE YOVE YOVE!" I guess that's close enough :)

Evidently, Allen is an aspiring break dancer or gymnast because during the meeting, he decided to practice his moves ... he jumped, spun around, and attempted a hand stand. I was a little concerned, until I realized that there was a distinct possibility that Daddy had given him chocolate before the meeting. When I took him back to discipline him, he talked non-stop (and I mean non-stop) until the end of the meeting. I was unable to return to my seat because he kept yelling, "Mommy!" and crying when I told him to be quiet. NO MORE CHOCOLATE BEFORE THE MEETING.

Still flying high from his chocolate fix, he made Mommy and Nana sing "Baba Sheep" (aka Ba Ba Black Sheep) over and over again all the way home. When we didn't start singing quickly he enough, he would yell, "BABA SHEEEP!!!" Lovely ... fortunately, he did go right to sleep without any problem though.

Goodnight my friends ... miss you all and love you.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Punk Rocker

Bathtime fun ....

"New Friends" Update

Remember the British friends Allen made the other weekend (see the 8/29/08 post)? Well, they actually emailed me the picture I took with their camera ... here it is!

Two weeks in a row, Football

Sorry sorry sorry ... I sincerely apologize for my absence. It's been a crazy week down here in good ol' Beaufort, and I have just been too darn tired to blog at the end of each day. I don't know where to begin to catch up on the past eight days, but I'll do my best ...

Let's start with book study. As you may know, we are remodeling our Kingdom Hall, so our congregation has been dispersed for a little over a week now. Nana graciously offered her home for book study (since ours is usually at the hall), so tonight was our second study at her house (and it was treat night ... YUM ... but I digress). "Coni," our book study overseer has given our book study homework -- each month we are to memorize two of the minor prophets, in the order in which they appear in the Bible. So, August, we memorized Hosea and Joel, and September we have to remember Hosea, Joel, Amos, and Obadiah. I've been working with Allen on saying these names. Last week, we practiced and practiced before the meeting, and when "Coni" asked what the names of the first two books of the minor prophets was, Allen raised his hand and whispered "Osea eh Joe." I have never been so proud in my life! Last week, he gave another answer too ... "Coni" asked if we should doubt that Jehovah's prophecies would be fulfilled, and I told Allen to raise his hand and say "No." He raised his hand, was called on, and said "Watkis!!" (for those new to the blog, Brother Watkis is our book study reader. Allen loves him). Then, after much laughter, he said, "No."

Tonight, we worked on all four of the prophets we're learning, and tonight, when it was quiz time, Allen raised his hand, and whispered "Osea, Joe, Amos, Adiah." It truly warmed my heart to see him willing to participate, and he was quite happy with the chuckles and smiles he received. He's my special boy ...

The rest of the meeting, he was kind of naughty. He forgot to whisper for the first 15 minutes. He was being noisy, and I had repeatedly told him to be quiet. When he got noisy again, I leaned down to discipline him, and he said out loud, "Oh sorry." Everyone was quite impressed by that. It took every ounce of patience for me to acknowledge that he apologized and forget that he talked out loud.

So, you football fans all know that yesterday was the beginning of football season (alas, I am a football widow yet again). We Eagles fans were quite pleased at the result of the Eagles opener, and here is Allen showing his enthusiasm ...

Fly eagles fly, on the road to victory ....

Monday, September 1, 2008

Dog walking, chocolate epic

Sunday was a lovely day! Allen and I woke up at about 7:30 and let Daddy sleep more, since he didn't get home till around 3:00 in the morning (he was doing security at the Kingdom Hall). We had agreed Saturday evening, that he would sleep in a little and then be on Allen duty so I could volunteer at the KH remodel. So Allen and I watched Little Einsteins and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and ate a granola bar and cereal (with milk, and a "poon" that Allen eats all by himself). At one point, Mommy fell asleep on the sofa with the blanket over her, and Allen pulled the blanket off and said "Ome on Mommy!" in a very exasperated tone.

Once Daddy got up, Mommy got ready and Nana and Papa picked her up to go to the KH remodel. Much to Mommy's disappointment there were so many volunteers that there was nothing for us to do (I think Nana was a little relieved). Papa picked up a shovel and dug a ditch, while Nana and Mommy wandered and talked and tried to help with food. We did do a bottled water run which made me feel a little better.

Last night we went to Nana and Papa's for dinner. We were sitting on the porch while the puppies were eating their dinner, and

Allen kept saying "Puppies treats." So I thought he wanted to feed the puppies their dinner. Nana handed Allen a handful of their food, and he started to put it in HIS mouth! One of us swatted his hand away, and he just burst into tears. He was so embarrassed. He was inconsolable for at least a couple minutes. And he was grumpy for longer than that. But then, Allen "walked" the puppies.

Then we went for a longer walk ... with Allen in the stroller.

You can sort of see in the picture that Lily's leash is hooked on the handle of Allen's stroller. She pulled him a little ways down the street until Nana flipped out that we would hurt her.

Gigi made chicken cutlets (YUM) and tomato salad, and Nana made broccoli. It was a fabulous dinner, but Allen threw a little tantrum because he wanted cookies. Unlike Nana, Mommy and Daddy held their ground, and after what seemed like an eternity, Allen suddenly asked for chicken, and ate quite a bit.

After Allen finished dinner, he grabbed "bunny" (a rabbit figurine that Papa bought for Nana in Venice). One minute he had it, the next it was gone. We searched ... under furniture, in the trash can ... it turns out he put it in a drawer (which he had pointed to, but none of us were paying attention). Papa was so relieved that "bunny" was found, and not in the great unknown with Nana's ring and phone.

Since Allen ended up doing such a good job with his dinner, he was allowed to have "epic" (ice cream) for dessert. He thoroughly enjoyed eating his "chocate epic" while watching Dora.

I desperately want to continue to blog about our adventures today ... including a morning at the beach AND Allen's first answer at book study ... but I'm about to fall asleep. So I'll have to write more tomorrow. Stay tuned!!