Friday, December 25, 2009

The Many Kinds of Love and Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! I pray that you and your family have a blessed day.

Yesterday, I was looking through the cookbook that my grandmother had when I was growing up. It is filled with recipes written in her handwriting (and mine too when I was a little girl). It has recipes from loved ones, friends and family and many that my grandmother, Nanny, made up throughout her life. Hidden in with the family recipes and potluck ideas was this little gem that my grandmother wrote many years ago. My grandmother is no longer with us on earth, but her love is still here.

My prayer is that your Chirstmas day is filled with love, joy, happiness and the true meaning of Christmas!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: What YOU Looking at Lady?

I think this goat at the zoo didn't want her photo taken earlier this week!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Memories of Christmas Past: Christmas Wish Books

My sons are still a bit young to really ask for particular toys for Christmas, but that doesn’t stop them from giving us clues as to what they’d like.

We just watch them in their day to day lives. My oldest son was in his playroom playing with his beloved train table when my husband caught this scene on camera. He found the yearbook that came with his Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway set and was “reading” it carefully, softly touching one train after another. He’d stop and smile then turn the page. It actually brought tears to my eyes. He doesn’t really speak very much and has a hard time communicating. His Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) specialist has us working on communicating through pictures. He sat there for about an hour just admiring all of the beautiful trains. Guess what he’s getting for Christmas?

Growing up in a very small town, we didn’t have big box stores or huge toy stores. We also didn’t have the internet or cell phones or any high tech way of finding out about the big toys of the year (I was born in the 70s). What we did have, and I miss, are the big Christmas wish books and catalogs.

These catalogs were HUGE and many times doubled as impromptu booster chairs for toddlers at Christmas dinner. Do you remember them? My sisters and I would fight over these humongous catalogs filled with everything we could ever want or need as they arrived in the mail. We’d painstakingly pour over them, folding over pages, circling our favorite toys with markers and crayons and ripping pages out to post on the refrigerator door. We’d make a list and check it twice and keep adding to it right up until Santa landed on the roof.

Of course, we didn’t realize that our mother was Santa’s helper and we needed to get our orders in early. In those days, especially way out in the country where we lived, there was no expedited shipping. My mother would order our toys and then go to the local catalog pickup location and get our goodies. The employees would call when our presents were in and I remember that, a lot of the time, toys would be back-ordered. That would send my mom scrambling to the local Bill’s Dollar Store to find a suitable replacement.

One of my most memorable toys from childhood was a Michael Jackson Record Player that I received in the early 80s. It was the big toy in one of the Christmas catalogs that year and I really wanted one. I remember it clearly… I loved that it was portable. I played both sides of my Michael Jackson record over and over (yes I only had one). My sister also received this record player that year, because the company sent two.

What is your most memorable toy from childhood? Do you remember those huge wish books?

Most importantly though, I wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a wonderful new year from my family to yours!

Are you done with your shopping yet? :)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Happy Birthday, Daddy!

We interrupt this tasty lunch to say (well Kierbear isn't going to interrupt his eating for anything, but he was still willing to help out... we know you understand):

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Dancing With My Kierbear

I see you smiling... I know you can't help it. :)

Monday, December 14, 2009

Need A Smile? Sure You Do!

Having a case of the Mondays? Watching the clock for 5 p.m. (only an hour to go if you're on central time)?

Never fear... Finley's here (to brighten your day)! We think he is going to be the conductor of a grand symphony one day. It could happen. Either way, gotta love him. He shows his pure joy, enthusiasm and happiness in a way that warms my heart.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Potamus's New AFOs

I've mentioned before that my 2 1/2 year old wears orthotics on his feet. He was wearing SMOs (stands for SupraMalleolar Orthosis), but needed more support. Yesterday, his ECI PT came out with his new Orthotist and they had his new AFOs (stands for Ankle-Foot Orthosis) with them. He was allowed to choose the design of his new orthotics. They have trucks and cars and are blue with red lining and blue straps. He wanted our blog readers to see him stylin' and profilin'. Cute isn't he?


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Dear Makers of Finley The Fire Engine

To the makers of Finley the Fire Engine and/or CBeebies,

Do you see these two sweet, angelic brothers resting side by side ever so sweetly watching your show? They are 1 1/2 and 2 1/2 and this is the first time this has ever happened. Usually they would be fighting each other, but they are so happy to watch this show that they will even allow me to snap a photo of this rare event.

So, my plea is this... please air your show in the USA, where we live! My oldest son's name is Finley and I just happened across a DVD last year that is about worn out. It isn't on any US channels and the DVDs and toys aren't to found here. My son LOVES the show and gets sooo happy to hear his name. I want to find him some merchandise too, so please hear my plea!

I love the positive themed messages about sibling rivalry, teamwork and learning to share. The accents are cute, too! We think it's "tire-ific" and if this DVD breaks I am in T-R-O-U-B-L-E!

Thank you for your time!

P.S. Kieran wants to know when they will be making a show about him. Daddy thinks it should be called Kieran the DestructoBot, but Mommy knows this is not at all a fitting title of a DVD about her sweet boy. ;)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Mama Tuck, Mama Tuck

I had to share this... It made my day!

Earlier today, I was preparing Finley something to eat for lunch while he was in the playroom with the door open. The playroom is attached to the kitchen (altered dining room). He was in there happily playing with his trains. I was pouring his milk when I heard something that sounded like "tuck". I thought he was saying truck because he was playing with the trains, cars and trucks. A few seconds later he says, "Mama tuck, Mama tuck". He didn't sound upset and it didn't sound urgent, but since he is speech delayed, I always go immediately when he calls me and makes an effort to communicate. I walked in there and about fell out laughing. Not only was he indeed "tuck", (aka stuck) but he took the time to pose for a quick photo. Instead of walking around to the other side to play with his lined up trains, he crawled over.

Gotta love that boy! Happy Friday!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

We took the boys for Christmas photos today... just one busy day so no blogging for me. Here's a nice Wordless Wednesday very late edition. The boys loved the horses at my sister and brother-in-law's farm on Thanksgiving. Here is their first meeting.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Hey, Hey We're The Monkeys... Halloween 2009

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Like (Squeaky) Music To My Ears

I remember before I had my boys that I’d see parents with their kids and think, “Why on earth would they do that?” I think a lot of us are guilty of this, right?

I would see a mom with a toddler screaming in a grocery cart and think, “Why can’t she calm him down?” Oh, how na├»ve I was! Having kids sure does slap you with reality and make you understand things. If I observe that same scene now (sometimes involving me and my party of two), I nod with total understanding and empathy.

Before kids, I couldn’t fathom why a parent would put noisy shoes on their child. I would see children running through malls with squeaky shoes on and cover my ears. I never understood why the moms and dads would sit there with a big smile, watching their little one, oblivious to the offending noise.

You know what?

I now get it! I TOTALLY get it! Every child is different. Every family is different. I have a 2 ½ year old son with developmental delays. He walks, but struggles with it daily. Lately, he has been walking on his own more and more and he’s so proud. I get tears of joy in my eyes just thinking about it. He takes unassisted steps with a huge smile on his face and a look in his eyes that says, “Are you proud of me?”. Awhile back, I was given a pair of squeaky shoes for him. Let me tell you, that squeak squeak squeak as he walks little by little, step by step is beautiful music to this proud mother’s ears. He loves hearing the squeak and that helps him want to walk more and more.

So, the next time you see someone doing something you don’t understand, try putting yourself in their shoes (squeaky or not) for just a minute.

I wrote this post for the Naptime Blog. You can read all of my posts and posts from other bloggers here. There are lots of personal posts there from me. I will be featuring more of those at a later time to help you get to know me better.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Happy Fall, Y'all!

From the little country bumpkins in the pumpkin patch... Finleypotamus and Kierbear!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Bouncing Baby Kierie (Video)

Hrm, anyone need a baby mattress review done? lol

Have a happy Thursday... just one more day til Friday! Now that's something to bounce about.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Introducing the world's future bloggers!

When we were on vacation earlier this month, we had the pleasure of meeting Bridgette from The Not So Blog's Experimental Mommy and Renee from What Mommies Need. We also met their wonderful families. They showed us around New Orleans and introduced us to beignets... yum!

The photo above was taken after lunch at Mulate's, we wanted to snap a group shot of our kiddos. Poor Finley was exhausted and slept through lunch and photo taking. From left to right are my two, Bridgette's two and Renee's two. Such cuties!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Blue at I ♥ Faces

This week at I ♥ Faces their photo challenge theme is blue. I snapped this photo during our vacation in Florida earlier this month. The water was a gorgeous blue. My older son was trying desperately to get to the water to play and my younger son was apprehensive. I think that this photo nicely illustrates that a face's profile can tell just as much as a full on frontal face shot.

I ♥ Faces is a photography blog sharing faces from around the world and they have a weekly photo challenge with a different theme each week. The winner has their photo displayed on the I ♥ Faces blog.

Just click on the I ♥ Faces button above to head on over to their site and enter on Monday and Tuesday.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Kierieosity Korner: Things Learned Today

The boys learn things everyday, but today Mommy learned some things...
  1. Dogs like to eat new sippy cups full of fresh milk.
  2. Dogs like to eat diapers full of not so fresh, well, you know.
  3. Certain art supplies make a huge mess on children.
  4. Certain art supplies make a huge mess on rugs.
  5. Oxyclean is my friend. I need to buy stock in that company as much as I buy it.
  6. Dogs and children have a secret pact to cry, whine, scream and bark at precisely the exact same time each day.
  7. Telemarketers and door to door sales people have a special kind of ESP to detect when aforementioned dogs and children have just dozed off for a nap. That's when they decide to call or ring the doorbell.
  8. 17 month old toddlers have an uncanny ability to turn into mini-hurricanes and destroy a living room in 10 seconds flat.
  9. 29 month old toddlers have the wonderful ability to erase entire blog posts that mommy has spent an hour on before she thinks to save it. They do this with one key press while simultaneously closing the laptop lid.
  10. Two toddlers living under the same roof are hungry, thirsty, tired, wet and dirty at the same time. Amazing!
  11. Even 30-something moms need a mom every once in awhile.
  12. Even though I will need 10 bottles of #5 to clean up #1, #2 and #4 after cleaning up #8 for the tenth time today, I wouldn't change any of it. Why? Because out of it, I got the most beautiful drawing created by my oldest son. It's more beautiful than any Picasso. Isn't it perfect? Anyone beg to differ with this Mama? I didn't think so. :)
What have you learned today?
Kierieosity Korner is a new feature here at Potamus Prefers. The name was inspired by my youngest son's nicknames, Kierie or Kierbear, just as Potamus Prefers was inspired by my oldest son's nickname, Finleypotamus.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Completely Candid at I ♥ Faces

This week at I ♥ Faces their photo challenge theme is "completely candid". I snapped this photo during our vacation earlier this month in Florida. It was taken at this cool 50s hamburger joint called Hartell's Village Diner. This is my 28 month old (at the time) son enjoying fresh french fries and coloring. He is also daydreaming about all of the fun things he was doing that day. I just recently discovered Photoshop actions and so I had to play a bit with the photo to give it a true retro feel. I used actions from The Pioneer Woman on this one, but I am also a bit fan of CoffeeShop Actions.

I ♥ Faces is a photography blog sharing faces from around the world and they have a weekly photo challenge with a different theme each week. The winner (and top ten) has their photo displayed on the I ♥ Faces blog.

Just click on the I ♥ Faces button above to head on over to their site and enter on Monday and Tuesday.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

On Our Way Home From Vacation

We are on our way home from a week long vacation. As I sit in the passenger seat, going through digital photos taken during our travels, watching the raindrops splatter on the windshield and listen to the boys giggle at their DVD in the backseat, I am so thankful for what I have. Although, I wasn't online Friday, Sept. 11, I did say many prayers for those that lost loved ones, were inured or affected directly that day eight years ago.

We had a wonderful time on vacation and I had the most fun soaking in scenes like this one I captured of my boys Friday at the beach at Sandestin in Florida. We are so very blessed.

I will be back into the swing of things this coming week. I will have some fun reviews and giveaways so keep an eye out for that (something to pamper mom).

Have a beautiful Sunday wherever you are.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Vacation Here We Come, But First, Your Tips?

We are getting ready to go on vacation and I am looking forward to it, but I am afraid I am going to sleep the entire way there. Packing for two toddlers is exhausting. I am wondering how many important items I will forget. I usually either forget my own toothbrush or my own shampoo. I figure as long as I remember food, diapers and sippy cups for the boys, everything will fall into place.

Wait, I better not forget entertainment. See, I almost forgot something. Momnesia is real! :)

We are easy to please mom. No worries! ;)
My boys have never been in a car for this long at a time as toddlers. We will be breaking up the trip a bit. We will drive to our first destination and stay a couple of days (about five hours from here) then head on to our final destination in Destin, Florida (another five hours or so I believe). I will for sure pack the DVD players and their favorite DVDs, but I am looking for tips to entertain a 28 month old and a 16 month old in the car. Lately, they get upset each time I stop at a stoplight.

Just bring me a toy with wheels and I'll be good to go!

Due to this much needed vacation, I'll be scarce next week so I hope everyone has a wonderful Labor Day.

Now before I go, please help me out! For those that have traveled with little ones this small, what is your advice? How should I keep them entertained? Are there any tricks that will keep them happy for long periods of time? They love to explore so I don't blame them for not wanting to be strapped in that long. All in all, I just want to make the ride as fun as possible for them.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Finley's First Day of Mother's Day Out

Friday, August 28, 2009

What To Pack A 28 Month Old For "School" Lunch?

My 28 month old will be attending Mother's Day Out one day a week starting next week.

I just found out that I have to pack him a lunch and it has to be free of peanuts. They also want the items already in bite size pieces (except sandwiches that can just be cut in small squares). I need tips on what to pack for a child that is in love with chicken nuggets and bananas. See him in the photo at left? He is in banana heaven!

I have never had much success getting him to eat sandwiches (except PB&J). Any tips for what I can pack that will be healthy, fit these guidelines and be yummy to eat right out of a lunch box? Also, do I just get him a regular little school lunch box or is there something newer and cooler out there that I don't know about?

I am lost! I didn't think I'd be packing my kids lunches for a few more years. I would love some tips from experienced moms (and dads).

Thanks and have a happy Friday!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sorta Kinda Wordless Wednesday and Updates

Okay, yeah, I'm a little late to the game today, but I thought I'd share this picture of my youngest son from yesterday. He mimics my hubby growling now. It's cute. :)

I've had a busy, fun day. My oldest loved his class today during Mother's Day Orientation. He will go once a week starting next week. I think it will be good for him and my youngest and I will just hang out and have fun.

After orientation, we went shopping and saved a bunch of money with coupons. I recently found a blog called Katy Couponers and I have learned so many couponing tips from her. She barely pays for groceries! I am nowhere near that good, but I am sure happy to see that tally drop, drop, drop at checkout! I will be updating my Kroger post soon with some of my finds, so stay tuned.

P.S. Check out Coupon Divas as well to save mula! If you have a coupon blog and want me to list it in this post, let me know, I'd love to!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Many Silly Faces of Kierie

Kieran will be 16 months old tomorrow and Finley turned 28 months old today. They are so much fun. Kieran loves to mimic and was copying daddy growling tonight. He cracks me up! Finley starts Mother's Day Out once a week next week. We have orientation tomorrow. I hope he enjoys! More updates soon...

Monday, August 24, 2009

Kids Do The Cutest Things And Are Super Smart

It’s amazing to me how smart little 2 year olds really are. Mine is pretty quiet, vocabulary-wise, but I think he takes EVERYTHING in. He surprises me every day and keeps me smiling and laughing.

Here are a couple of cute stories from the last week or so…

Story 1
The other day he was playing with his toys and I was in the kitchen washing dishes. I can see both boys over the bar as we have an open floor plan and the rooms are connected. Well, I looked down for a second to turn off the water and heard a loud noise. My 27 month old had dumped out a huge bag of toys that I didn’t think he could reach and they landed all over the floor, rolling under the couch, etc. I walked in the living room, but didn’t say a thing. He looked up at me, stopped dead in his tracks and said, “Dada did it!”. I (trying to conceal a smile) said, “Dada’s at work.” He then grabbed my finger and led me to the front door and said “I want Papa.” The blame game and get out of jail free game starts early, eh?

Story 2
The same son wears SureStep orthotics (braces) on his feet to help him with balance and walking. He loves to take his shoes and the braces off because he loves playing with Velcro. He needs to keep them on to help his feet not turn in when he walks. We have tried many ways to keep them on.

Last week, we decided to put a piece of tape over the Velcro on the shoes to hopefully deter him from undoing them (for at least a little bit). It seemed to work for awhile. After a bit, I put him and his brother in one of their cribs for a few minutes while I had to go out of the room. When I returned, the shoes, braces and socks were off (not to mention the tape). I started looking around to see where he had put the tape when I glanced at my 16 month old. I burst out in fits of laughter (I couldn’t control it) when I saw that my oldest son had removed the tape from his own shoes and put it on his brother’s shoes over the Velcro, just like we had done to his shoes.

Yep, he’s a smart one! They are going to keep me on my toes for sure.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Bubbles at I ♥ Faces

This week at I ♥ Faces their photo challenge theme is bubbles. I haven't entered in awhile, but when I saw this theme in a Tweet today, I knew I had to enter. The boys had a blast last night. I let them take a bath in our big tub (very rare) and the shampoo from their hair made a ton of bubbles. They had more bubbles than water. lol

I ♥ Faces is a photography blog sharing faces from around the world and they have a weekly photo challenge with a different theme each week. The winner (and top ten) has their photo displayed on the I ♥ Faces blog.

Just click on the I ♥ Faces button above to head on over to their site and enter.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Grandmommy and The Begging Babies