September 27, 2011

Hamilton and Arthur

My dear friend Christie and her son Arthur visited us last weekend, and it was almost like old times. Except Hamilton and Arthur don't play together as two-year-olds nearly as well as they did as one-year-olds. Hamilton insisted on hoarding all the toys, and Arthur responded by crying and collapsing into a heap. I think sometimes Hamilton just wanted to see Arthur's reaction to his taking a toy away.
No matter how many toys, the boys still fought over the same one.
Here they played "together" for a few short seconds.
Hamilton's scoping out how to relieve Arthur of his Thomas train and police car. Tempting Arthur with Percy (the green train) in the picture above did not work, so Hamilton's having to rethink his strategy.
Both boys did love to play with their tongues stuck out! Notice that Hamilton has slyly stolen Thomas (the blue train) away from Arthur.
What a handful the boys were, but the weekend was so fun. Christie and I enjoyed some girl time on Saturday night when Mr. Morgan took over. What a dear!

September 24, 2011

Farm Life

Last week the boys and I headed to the farm for a few days, and it wasn't until this weekend that I discovered the pictures were still on my memory card. We had just a few days of chickens, firetrucks, horses, and stroller walks.

September 22, 2011

Some Cute Things

Yesterday Hamilton was singing his version of "Jees Me," and I recognized a few other words. After "Jees Me" and some humming, he clearly said, "Bible tells me so." Oh so cute! Later in the afternoon Claire heard him singing it, and she was so impressed. She tends to make a much bigger deal about things than I, so Hamilton continued to say, "Bible tells me sooo" all evening as his new default phrase. Past default phrases have included "muh hi be-ah" (more hay bales) and "Pah Joe Ten-see," which roughly translates to Papa Joe is in Tennessee. I fully expect him to continue his obsession with "Bible tells me sooo" all week at least.

During lunch I worked with Hamilton on saying his full first name, not just his Grady-given nickname of Hammie. He finally said it! Though it sounds like Hammie-ton. Then we worked on Taylor and Morgan, which he thoroughly enjoyed saying. I also repeated each sibling's full name to him; and when I said Mr. Morgan's full name, Hamilton smiled when I said "Hamilton" for his daddy's middle name. Then I asked, "Do you know Mama's full name?" He thought for a second, cut his eyes, then said, "Mama Tay-uh Mor-ghiun."

Collier tolerates all sorts of loving and hugging from Hamilton. He tolerates Hamilton's lying on top of him like he's destined to wrestle with his brother one day. Collier doesn't even cry with Hamilton's 28-pound body nearly smothering him; Collier just reaches his hands up to each side of Hamilton's face, and they look at each other. Hamilton babbles to him in his singsong voice, and Collier squeals with delight.

Claire has started writing her yet-to-be-published story again. And, her obsession with cats has reached new heights, for the main character turns into a cat in the fifth chapter. Then several days ago she told me, "I'm so jealous of my book. I wish I could turn into a cat." I'm not sure when she'll be finished with her book, but I'll be sure to post it once she's finished. She did ask me the other day--with a bit more pride than I was expecting, "Mama, have you ever written a book?" Well, no I haven't.

September 18, 2011

Hamilton Lately

Hamilton loves to help Mr. Morgan around the house and in the garage. Recently, he "helped" Mr. Morgan change the lightbulb in the oven. I loved how immediately Hamilton started doing exactly what he saw his daddy doing--hands on knees staring into the oven.
Then Mr. Morgan pointed out some things inside the oven, so Hamilton followed suit.
Two weeks ago we received a shipment in a huge box, so I saved the box for Hamilton to play inside. Over the week or so that the box sat in our downstairs, Hamilton played with the box in so many ways. Sometimes he got in the box, but other times he wanted me to pull him around while sitting in the box. At times he'd hide inside and declare it was "dark, Mommy." When West came over, they played with their toys inside the box--with way more laughing and sillyness than I thought possible.
Hamilton has always had an affinity for music and singing, and lately he's been able to ask specifically for songs he wants me to sing. "Twinkle, Mommy" means he wants me to sing "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star." "Jees Me" means he wants to hear "Jesus Loves Me." Two new favorites are "Rejoice in the Lord Always" and "This Is the Day." He clearly says, "rejoice," but "day" is the only recognizable word for the other song. While I love singing to him, he can easily get demanding, and he never tires of hearing any of these songs.

My sweet, big boy has such a full vocabulary, and he usually surprises me every day with some new word or phrase that I haven't heard from him before. Just tonight he was running around the downstairs saying, "I go so fas!" He'd laugh and laugh then take off again.

September 14, 2011

Middle September

How is it the middle of September and I've posted only once this month?! Yikes, time flies. I've made a list to help organize my scattered, blog thoughts.
  1. School's in full swing for both Claire and Hamilton, though it's different this year for both of them. Claire's not only at a new school, but she's also going by a new name--Elaine. She's told all her teachers to call her Elaine, but her friends from her old school still call her Claire. She insists that we still call her Claire, though sometimes Mr. Morgan jokingly calls her Elaine. So all her school papers and books come home with "Elaine Morgan" written on them to which Mr. Morgan responds, "Who's this 'Elaine' person?" At Open House, I had to introduce myself as Elaine's stepmom. For Hamilton, he's learning so many new things at school that he's able to share with me this year. Last week all I heard was "AY-bee-see" over and over, though sometimes his pronounciation of the first three letters would morph into "ay-BEE-see." I'm pretty sure he thought "ABC" was a word. This week he's saying, "Gah may pee-puhl," so I've been saying, "What did God make?" He replies, "God made people." It's an awesome truth, though I wonder how much he understands.
  2. I cleaned the master bathroom yesterday.
  3. While to most folks the above statement doesn't deserve its own, separate number, trust me, it does. The master bathroom took over three hours to clean; the shower alone took an hour. It was disgusting. I won't even venture a guess as to how long it had been since the last cleaning because it would be embarrassing--even for me. But the bathroom sparkles now.
  4. I'm looking forward to an upcoming weekend away with some women from church. I'm happy to have enough milk stored for my trip, and I'm thankful for a husband who'll watch the kids--yes, he'll have help. I love fall getaways!
  5. I wanted to post my own memorial for Sept.11, but I missed it by a few days. So here's my I-remember-exactly-where-I-was tribute. I was a 21-year-old, college senior spending the fall semester at Keene State, which was only five hours from New York City. Students at my school knew people who worked in the Towers and as first-responders. In my Tuesday-morning class, we watched The Today Show's coverage of the attacks. I watched the towers fall live on television. I heard Katie Couric's live conversation with Jim Miklaszewski at the Pentagon when he said, "I just heard something that sounded like a bomb." I had been in New Hampshire--in a new region of the country, at a new school--for about two weeks, and I felt so alone. The local paper's front page showed a picture of the burning towers in its afternoon edition, published actually on Sept. 11, 2001. In writing about the attacks, it's hard for me not to focus on how life-changing it was for me--to make the events of September 11th about me. I didn't lose anyone or even know anyone who lost anyone that day. My fellow countrymen suffered that day, and I can't memorialize the events as well as news programs. But I can remember their sacrifices, our country's loss, and our only Hope for the future.

September 6, 2011

Wonderful Weekend

After our first full day back with the kids in our regular routine, I'm so thankful I had such a fun anniversary weekend. I've felt revived and refreshed all day. Mr. Morgan and I dropped the little ones at the farm for the weekend, and we headed to Hendersonville to stay in a quaint bed-and-breakfast. Who but Mom and Dad would watch three kids and two dogs for a long weekend? Yes, they are dears. The kids had a blast, and I think Mom and Dad enjoyed all the crazyness too--though I'm sure they were relieved to see the back of our loaded-down vehicle come Monday afternoon.

Hamilton seemed to have learned tons of new words and to be talking more and better just in three days if that's possible. He loved seeing Mimi and Pops's chickens and collecting their eggs, as well as the usual fun stuff like seeing the horses, riding in the golf cart, and playing with different toys.

Claire got horse-riding lessons and training from the friendly neighbors with eight horses. Susan said Claire was a model student and quick study; I believe Susan's words were, "I'd like to clone her as a student." Claire loved everything about the horses: being dirty and grimy, walking over horse manure (or what Hamilton called "orsie-poo"), and giving treats so they'd do a command. She was so proud to show us what she'd learned, and she loved that one of the Morgan horses was named Claire.
Claire asked what we did on our trip, and all I could think of were the things we don't usually get to do--sleep in, nap in the afternoon, talk during meals without interruption, etc. We also toured the Apple Festival, saw a play at the new Flat Rock Playhouse downtown, and went to see a movie. Though we're still on a fairly restrictive diet, Mr. Morgan and I found some fabulous places to eat including Tupelo Honey Cafe--a definite must if you're in the Asheville area. We loved our time away! We did plenty of reminiscing about the past five years, and I'm so glad I married that man. He still makes me laugh!