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Showing posts from September, 2014

Movies For Grandpa

For Jerry Stevens . . . because I know you can't get enough of these kids. They are, after all, adorable. Rose often rotates her wrists and kicks her legs at loud repetitive noises like the vacuum cleaner or a ball being rolled around in this big blue bucket. We call this Lee's turtle shell. Grandma Taylor got it for him for Christmas. Lee sits inside the bowl and Phil spins him around in it. It's also used as a mixing bowl to make pretend muffins or cakes or cookies. When Phil comes home from work, Lee often requests to go out into the front yard and run around or throw up, which means to be thrown up, not to vomit. Lee is a very deliberative speaker. He often takes a moment to answer a questions. But he also likes to speak gobble-de-gook. In addition to this, he has taught himself how to go cross-eyed. I was eating lunch one day, looked over at him, and he was doing it all on his own. We went to the Fullerton Train Station this last week with Mama Min

Library Finds: Great Books for Children

We've been visiting the Whittier Public Library every three weeks and taking home a bag full of new books. This prevents me from getting burned out on Goodnight Moon  and Let's Go For A Ride on a Train , which we own and have been requested over a dozen times, perhaps even a hundred in the last year. I've kept a running list of the books we've checked out and my ratings. I rate books based on illustrations, parental appeal, storyline, and whether or not Lee liked them. Here are the library find winners for the summer: Soup Day by Melissa Iwai:  Tells the story of a mother and daughter buying the ingredients for and cooking soup. The pictures were g raphically unique.  The story involved naming and counting vegetables, identification of shapes, and a soup recipe in the back. Lee requested this book repeatedly because he is  fascinated  with helping me cook. (Book Rating: 8) Leaf by Stephen Michael King : Wordless picture book about a seed that falls into a boy&

The Thing in the Compost Pile

I've asked our gardeners to dump the grass clippings and avocado leaves into our compost bin in the backyard. The heat from the grass helps decompose all the kitchen scraps that are buried underneath. Last week I was working in the backyard with the children when I noticed some trash in the compost pile: old door hangers and business cards, things the gardeners swept into their trashcans and just dumped into our compost pile. I began picking out the trash when I noticed a rather large black body half-buried in the grass. It was furry. My stomach dropped and I became very thankful that I was wearing gloves. Lovely. It was big enough to be a cat. Whatever it was, I knew it couldn't stay there, so I began brushing aside the grass to see how large it was. That's when I noticed that it had more than four legs. It had eight large fury legs. It was a huge tarantula. I've never seen one this size. I didn't know they existed. Maybe on "Man vs Wild" on some So