Yesterday Callen sat down and wrote his name all by himself, without any help, for the first time!  He is pretty proud of himself, and we are too!



Santa and Mrs. Claus! Callen didn’t tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas. He was too busy eyeballing the candy that Mrs. Claus had. Carina reported that she wants a Barbie playhouse and makeup! Not sure what to do about that.

Carina is having a fantastic time in Kindergarten this year.  She loves her teacher and the class pets, the sugar gliders.  She’s learning so much that she is certain she is the “smartest girl in the world” and she is also meeting lots of new friends!


“Look Mommy, I made a mermaid fin.”

Last night at bedtime, Craig was downstairs brushing the kid’s teeth. Usually I take over after that point and read them a book and put them to bed. But, last night was different.

photo credit: Arnaud Bram

Downstairs (unbeknownst to me):

Carina: Daddy, can we read books?

Craig: I don’t know. Go upstairs and ask your mom if she’s reading books or if I am.

Then, Carina came upstairs.

Me: Hey Carina. Are you ready for bed?

Carina: Mom, can we read books?

Me: No, it’s too late. We can read books tomorrow.

Carina: Oh. Ok.

Me: Let’s get you in your pajamas…

Carina: No, Mom. Daddy is putting us to bed tonight. You can put us to bed tomorrow. (hurridly kissing and hugging me goodnight)

Me: Uh, ok…

Carina runs back downstairs

Carina: Dad, Mom said that you are reading the books tonight.


Lately Callen has started to show a greater interest in music. And more of an opinion. Recently we were out to eat when a Sarah McLaughlin song came on. Five seconds into the song, Callen said he didn’t like the song. When I asked him why, he said, “because it’s sad.” I thought that was pretty intuitive, even if Sarah is one of my favorite artists.

Leaving Branson after a weekend visit, we were hoping the kids would sleep most of the way home since they are exhausted. We turned on some soothing Hayley Westenra music, specifically a track we used in our wedding. Callen immediately started yelling from the back seat, “turn this off! I don’t wike this! I don’t want to hear this!”

I was surprised, since I was fairly sure he had never heard the song before. “Why don’t you like this, Callen?”

“Because it’s TEWABLE!”

We’ve never heard him use the word terrible before, so we were dually impressed and amused.

On a side note, we’re now nearly home, and no one has done any sleeping.


Marsha. Meet Marsha, our first official pet. Some friends of ours are moving across the country, so we inherited their betta fish (and the contents of their freezer).

Carina named him Marsha. Both kids are very excited to share feeding duties, although based on the clouding in water, I’d say we need to scale it back a bit.

It always surprises me how certain pieces of new knowledge continually surface in the kids’ minds (especially when it relates to our own anatomy).

A few weeks ago, between bath time and pajamas, Callen pointed to the berries part of his twig and berries and said, “Dad, what’s this?”

“Those are your nuts,” said Craig.

Callen looked at him slyly and said, “Oh, Daddy, we don’t eat these!”


A few days later-

Callen:  Dad, I’m hungry.

Craig:  Ok, we’ll get a snack.

Callen: (pointing to his berries) What are these again?

Craig: Nuts.

Callen:  I’m so hungry my nuts hurt.


More recently –

I’m sitting in the front seat of the truck, and I hear Callen behind me in the back seat chewing and crunching on something quite noisily.

Me:  Callen, what are you eating?

Callen:  NUTS!!! Bwahahahaha!!!!!


And finally, last night –

30 minutes after Craig had put the kids to bed, we are lounging in the living room.  From the bottom of the stairs:

Carina:  Mom, I forgot to tell you and Dad something.

Me:  Yes, Carina?

Carina:  I love you all the way to the moon and back down to our house, and into my room, and up to the kitchen, and all the way into my heart.  I will never stop loving you!  (This is Carina’s new thing – she likes to tell us how much she loves us by stretching her love out over long distances)

Craig:  That’s very nice Carina.  Thank You.  We love you very much too.  Goodnight!

Me:  Goodnight Carina!  I looooovvveee you!

Callen:  Yeah, um, and I love you from the moon down to the earf (earth) and into my nuts and up to the ceiling and…

Carina: (in a surprised and correctional LOUD whisper)  Callen!  You don’t have any nuts!

Callen:  Yes I do. They’re right under my P. (P is his word for penis)…and into my room, and down the stairs, and into my heart.

Craig and I: (stifling laughter)  We love you too!  Goodnight children!

…Bear?  This statue is outside of an investment firm near our house (that is now out of business).  We drive past it all the time, with the kids often commenting, “I see a bear!”  I always think to myself, we should stop in there sometime so the kids can get an up close look, but I never pull in.  Now that the craziness of the first part of the summer is over, I really am trying to slow down and enjoy the world around us.  The long, hot, midsouth days nearly require it.  This summer, it’s the little things that matter, because in the fall, some big things are happening!  (And that’s no bull.)

Sorry.  I couldn’t help it.

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July 2018
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