Sunday, May 31, 2009

Weekend fun...and belated miscellaneous pictures/video

Last weekend we went down to hang out in Nana and Grandpa's beautiful back yard. The flowers are all blooming and it's gorgeous. Jack and Avery discovered one of their bird baths (among other things) and had a blast.

She dropped her rubber ducky in the watering can and is trying to fish it out.

Splashing in the bird bath

Jack giving his grandpa a sweet smile

This did not sit well with Nana. She had to go right out and get them a kiddie pool for her house. The boy can't play in a bird bath in the summertime. He must have a pool!

Where's my duck?
These are pictures taken while we were at the ocean a week ago (I think it was a week ago, anyway).
Hansen playing with Avery.

Courtney tormenting poor Lillie.
Preston and Jack bonding at the table in Nana & Grandpa's hotel room.

Avery loving on the horses at the beach
Below is a video from our visit to Ocean Shores. It's mostly of Jack eating handful after handful of sand, but you get a glimpse or two of Avery off in the distance with her grandpa. I can confirm that Jack ate plenty of sand, it showed up in his dirty diapers for almost 2 days. Probably too much information, but oh well. At least you didn't have to change them.

We all descended on Maren & Julian's house this weekend for a BBQ. The weather was perfect, the food was excellent and the company couldn't have been better.

Avery enjoying a bite of Nana's chocolate cream pie.
Jack asleep with his Grandpa
Avery passed out on Maren & Julian's couch
She slept like this for an hour which is amazing for her. Normally her naps don't last much longer than 30 minutes. Maybe she needs more chaos in the background for her to sleep more soundly.

I took Jack and Avery to Nana and Grandpa's house today. While Avery was sleeping, Jack enjoyed some solo time in their kiddie pool.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

What Happened?

For a boy that isn't much into gestures and sign language, this is awfully cute.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Queen's Coronation - 2009 Preakness

As I watched Rachel Alexandra take on the boys in this year's running of the Preakness Stakes, I said to myself, My God, she is like watching an angel. Not since the glory days of 1973-1980, have I a seen a horse with so much talent, grace, and heart. And a filly at that.
For those of you who watched it, you saw for yourself. You saw her stumble out of the gate, take the lead early on, and hold off a backstretch push from the Kentucky Derby winner, Mine That Bird, to win the second jewel of the Triple Crown.
What a performance. What an athlete. All of us that have longed to have those glory days back, we thank you, Rachel Alexandra, for being simply the best.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Near disaster

We were killing time until naps this morning and we were hanging out in the back room. Court and Stef popped down for a break from work to see Jack and Avery before they went to sleep. We were all hanging out on the floor and all of a sudden Jack tripped over something and headed straight for their new bench. He broke his fall with his teeth. I have no idea how he managed it without biting his lip or tongue, but he did. When he looked at me his teeth were literally covered in yellow paint and you can see why. This is a picture of the bench where he hit it. I just hope he didn't do any damage to his mouth. None of his teeth feel loose, but he sure gets upset when I try to touch them. Poor guy. Court said she's putting the bench out in the garage for a while, she said it needs a time out. I agree. Our nerves agree, this is the second header Jack has taken into it.

On a happier note, we spent the afternoon with friends at Greenlake. It was a beautiful day and fun to visit with friends and watch all the little ones run and play.

Happy Birthday Lloyd

Happy Birthday bro. We all hope you have a wonderful day. We love you--

C,M,J,and A

The Cunniffs in Houston, TX, March 2009
(l to r) Crystal, Don, Brenda, Court, Kegan, Kilian, and Lloyd

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Kindermusik and a couple more signs at dinner

**Court is telling me that part of the video is cut off, but if you click on the video it will take you directly to youtube where you can see it better**

Nana and Grandpa hung out with Jack and Avery while I took video of Kindermusik. This song is Doris Day, "A Bushel and a Peck". It's from Nana and Grandpa's era so they enjoyed it just as much as Jack and Avery did.

This next video is of both of them signing "all done" and "bird" at different times. It is so gratifying to be able to communicate with them now that they have the desire to but aren't able to talk yet.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Signing "Please"

So I just created a youtube account and learned that they will upload video in HD so I'm testing this to see if the image is any better since our video camera shoots in HD.

If you can stand the fussing and screaming in this short video, at the end both Jack and Avery do the sign for "please". It's supposed to be a circle on your chest, but they each do it in their own way.

A couple of videos

Jack has a funny noise he makes with his lips and I know one day he'll grow out of it so I had to capture it on video and post it so that I can always look back and listen to it. It's toward the end of the video.

This video is mostly of Avery showing how well she knows her animal sounds. Jack interjected a little bit, too.

Who needs toys when you have pillows?

A video of Jack and Avery playing with some pillows.

Court, Stef and I joke that Avery and Jack's aimless wandering reminds us of the sleep walking scene in Step Brothers.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Rachel Alexandra set for The Preakness

She’s a go!

For those that believe the superstar filly, Rachel Alexandra, could have won this year’s Kentucky Derby, we will now get to watch her square off against the boys this Saturday at the 134th running of the Preakness Stakes.

After a stunning 20¼ length victory in the Kentucky Oaks, everyone’s attention was focused on whether she would run at Pimlico. Now, after a week of speculation and drama, the powerhouse filly will board a private plane on Wednesday bound for the second jewel of the Triple Crown, and a chance to cement her name in history. If she wins, her name will be mentioned alongside the likes of Genuine Risk, Ruffian, and Winning Colors as one of the greatest to ever run.

Calvin Borel, her jockey sums it up simply.“She is the best horse I’ve ever been on… She’s incredible.”

As the odds on favorite to win, here's to Alexandra the Great. We will be watching and cheering.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!!

We spent Mother's Day hanging out with Nana and Grandpa (or BaPa as Jack calls him). We hung out for a while then Nana, Grandpa and I took Jack and Avery to a nearby park.

Jack's not much for heights and Grandpa's shoulders are too high for him.
Getting ready to taste a dandelion
Testing out the flavor of a dandelion
More testing
Not too interested in the swings. Jack prefers throwing balls, kicking balls, and dribbling balls...oh and sweeping is a new favorite. He found the little broom next to Nana and Grandpa's fireplace that you use to clean up fireplace ashes and he proceeded to sweep the entire living room with it.
Avery had to check out the dandelions as well. She actually spotted them first and Jack had to see what she was doing.
Nana and I were showing her how to blow on them.
She was more interested in eating them.

I am guessing that we'll spend quite a bit of time outside this summer and so I asked Court for an umbrella for our table out back and that's what she got me, but it arrived without all the pieces so I don't have a picture of it yet. Auntie Stef got us a picnic table just the right size for Jack and Avery. Now they have somewhere to sit when we're hanging out in the back yard. Thank you Auntie!!

Congratulations Maren!!!!

Maren was just elected as one of the ALA (American Library Association) Councilors-at-Large. Since she will never tell anyone, I thought I'd share it and congratulate her. I'm so proud of her!!

NEWS For Immediate ReleaseMay 1, 2009
ALA councilors elected

CHICAGO – Thirty-three members have been elected as Councilors-at-Large on the Council of the American Library Association (ALA) for three-year terms. The terms begin at the conclusion of the 2009 ALA Annual Conference in Chicago and extend through the end of the 2012 Annual Conference held in Anaheim, Calif.
The 2009 - 2012 Councilors-at-Large are:
Rosie L. Albritton
Jose Aponte
Mario Ascencio
Valerie P. Bell
Kay I. Bowes
Angela Carstensen
Annalisa R. Crews
Linda Dobb
Aaron W. Dobbs
Nanette Donohue
Vicki Morris Emery
Rosario Garza
Carolyn Giambra
Judith A. Gibbons
Michael A. Golrick
Mario M. Gonzalez
Tracie D. Hall
Dora T. Ho
Sara Kelly Johns
Susan Miller
Virginia (Ginny) B. Moore
Maren Ostergard
Jennifer Pickle
JoAnn Pinder
Eva Poole
Gail Schlachter
Vicky Schmarr
Patricia H. (Pat) Smith
Gail Tobin
Shixing Wen
Diane Yuhfen Wu
Diane Zabel
Nancy P. Zimmerman

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Another amazing video from Suzie

We spent the last weekend in April with Regina, Suzie and Katie in Oregon. Suzie is a master with the video camera and the camera.

She made a wonderful video of the kids playing.

You can find it by clicking here.

A day to celebrate

There are lots of reasons to celebrate today.

Jack and Avery are 14 months old today...

1 year ago today, their adoption was finalized...and Dad's birthday is today!! Happy Birthday Dad!

Katie and the Wii

Stef came over on Friday night and we played with the Wii. We had a blast, but Katie felt differently...