Wednesday, September 23, 2009

these are a few of his favorite words

So Brian and I have this ongoing joke of how our (almost 18 month old) son likes to say expressions "Oh no you Didn't!", "Up the stairs", "start over", "yellow" and "doh!"

You might wonder why I didn't ever mention him saying the basics like "dog", "cat", "hi", etc. Well, that's because he didn't. He went straight into saying the BIG words... or at least Brian likes to think so.

"On no you didn't!!!": The other day, in the car, Chase was protesting and he blurted out what sounded like "No you DIT- ENNNNT" and I had that exact thought in my head and as I was turning towards Brian to ask him if he heard what I just heard, Brian proudly mocked "Oh No you didn't!" We both laughed hysterically! After that I was seriously contemplating teaching Chase "aww snap" just for effect.

"yellow": Brian will work on a BIG word like "yellow" for a day and then Chase will say something that sounds like "ye-ow" which sends Brian into grin-mode. I laugh b/c I don't think Chase actually means yellow. I say this because I have worked on basic words and signs with Chase since he was about 6 months old and just this month he signs "more." When Brian asked, where did he learn more from, I explain in my faux humility that "oh I had worked on it with him" (while in my head thinking "FOR 11 MONTHS!!") haha!

"DOH": I promise we don't let him watch the Simpsons. He sounds like he's saying "no" with a stuffed up nose so it comes out like a "d" and he elongates the "ohhhh" which equals "dohhhhh"

"start over": The other day I was getting aggravated while at the computer and Brian joked that Chase said "start over" b/c whatever came out of his mouth sounded just like that!

"up the stairs:" Last night, Brian swears to me that as he was taking Chase upstairs for his bath that Chase said "upppfffstawers". I just laughed and thought, "that's funny b/c sometimes he gets his teeth and his nose mixed up and I'm impressed he's already moved on to 3-word-phrases."

What can I say, he must be a genius. :) We are so proud.

On a more serious note, Chase does understand a lot:

  • When I ask him to bring me his book or sign book, he'll go get me a book to read him.
  • When I ask him to sit or even just "go get your shoes" he gets them and sits in the floor and waits for me to put them on. He'll often sit wherever he retrieves the shoes even if that isn't where I want to put them on.
  • He knows gentle and strokes his or my face gently when I say that
  • He knows how to give a hug (but still avidly opposes kisses)
  • He knows (for the most part) where his teeth, ears, belly button, feet, toes, mouth are and for nose he always points to mine (I think he's convinced that only others have noses)
  • He's figured out that keys go in a door to open it so he takes daddy's keys to the front door
  • He knows how to sit on his rocker (at Grammy B's house) and rock himself
  • He spins in circles when he gets excited (like when we let Zoe loose to play with him)
  • He is currently very attached to men (including Brian, my dad, uncle Bry, Johnny, and some of the Sink's extended relatives in which we discovered he felt comfortable enough to sit in their laps!)
  • He signs "all done" and "more" and still says his favorite word: "car"
  • He definitely is developing his sense of humor as I notice him laugh at things that I didn't realize he understands are funny
  • He's back into high fives... he took about a 4-5 month hiatus
  • He waves whenever he hears the front door shut (usually 3-4 minutes after Brian has left)
  • He holds things up to his ear like a telephone and waits for me to say "ring! ring!"
  • He is eager to use his fork and spoon and loves his Nalgene sippy that doesn't have handles
  • He is finally loving his baths and splashes water everywhere and stacking his cups (thanks Grandma Whited!)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

MUD RUN!!!! Go team Whited!

So a dream of mine for more than 10 years has been to do the Annual Marine Mud Run in Roanoke which is hosted every September. (So .... ehhemmmm.... mark your calendars for next year!!!!) In high school I just thought it sounded like so much "clean" fun and the high school cross country team would always get teams together to compete. Only, EVERY year I had some kind of knee issue that would keep me out of it. After much recruiting and not a big response, my husband and I decided that our team of two would have to suffice. And BOY did we have a blast!!! I think it was the funnest thing in our marriage since.... I dunno?!!!

We began the run and headed for a tunnel that we had to squat under while moving forward. Then before we had much time to pick up the pace, we plunged into the river where Brian helped me trudge through the chest-high water. It felt like we were doing water aerobics and not getting anywhere! Then we headed for dry land up a gigantic hill (which was more like a mountain). And by that time everyone was walking. Brian and I started out jogging but when we realized we couldn't see the end of the mountain, we thought we'd save up our energy to run once we hit the top.

Then there was a field and a beautiful horizon of mountains where the hill rolled downward. It was an overwhelming sensation and reminded me of my many high school runs on the parkway where the beauty of the mountains was overwhelming. I am a very focused, driven and disciplined person. But when it comes to the mountains, I find that I easily lose myself and all the pain and anxiety melt away. In fact, my knees did not feel any pain during the entire run!!! And it inlcuded lots of uneven ground, holes, mud pits, a river, some muddy creeks, and a slick grassy hill! (For those that know me, that is a miracle; my knees (especially on asphalt) ache after the first mile or sometimes before. I felt so blessed to have a good run; my mind didn't even think about knee pain the entire time!!!

My dad was kind enough to get up early on his Saturday, drive all the way to Salem and come take pictures. He caught a photo of this guy as the first person (I think) to finish.

Notice how Brian looks ticked and seems to have more mud on his face than me? Well, check this out and you'll see why. Look for the splash. (Let's just say he wasn't the one who made the splash.)

Poor Brian.

Good thing I was able to cheer him up!
"We are the champions, my friend"

"We'll keep on fightin' till the end"

At the end, they had HUGE hoses which sprayed freezing cold water (as you can see by my expression). It didn't help much because we were soaked-head to toe- in mud!!

Hubby: I had so much fun playing in the mud together!!! I think we've just started a family tradition! Go Team Whited!

So the question is for all you blogstalkers is: Don't YOU want an excuse to get this dirty without leaving your house a mess?

Proud Aunt & Uncle

We would like to welcome to the world our new nephew: Asher Cade Musselwhite! He's so sweet and so precious and very attentive. He really seemed to focus in when Grammy B (my mom) was holding him! He has a pretty much a full head of brown hair and blue-gray eyes. He was born last Sunday and measured in at 8 lbs 1 oz and 21 inches long. He looks like a long, slender baby. I'm so proud of Renu and how well she did and how hard she labored. This little guy loves his mommy and daddy and boy do they LOVE him!

sleepy boy

Asher with his Grammy

Asher and his mommy

So glad you are home with your mommy & daddy where you belong!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Ode to Cristen


Countless memories: Late night talks. Many of which were in the kitchen of a dorm or apartment. Freshman year Bible study. MGL fun. Snow ball fights on Hillside. Tacky roller skating. Later made famous to all on the web by Schuman. D-Hall. College crushes. Summer fun camp in the 'burg. Living with the Crabtrees. Sharing a room. Seeing all the poor guys that thought they could win your heart. Excursions to the water tower. Creative dates with the Mullet suite. Loud alarm clocks and flying veggie tales. Spooning. Guys dressing up in our winter scarves and gloves just to make us laugh. And turning our worlds upside down. Where exactly did our fish go? Salsamerengue dances with latino club. F & G. Climbing the bell tower. Panama city. That stupid Geology class. Those darn rocks. Forking. Carving pumpkins and late night movies. Rock house parties and Rootbeer keggers at Halloween. 625 boys and their fishtank foyer. Oh how we clowned Ogle. Corolla '03. News from abroad! What's this- Johnny and Cristen? At Reddish knob? Letters back and forth from Venezuela. Your graduation. Summer Wedding. Fall Wedding. Your wedding. My wedding. New Years reunions. Baby shower after baby shower... then Babies babies babies!!Play dates and M2M studies. Girl nights and car chats.

Cristen you've give me so many countless memories! I pray God would give us countless more!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

a kitchen-full of memories

This past weekend, my dad helped me accomplish a great desire of mine- painting our kitchen! It was a fun father/daughter time of getting paint all over the place! I have had great visions of what I desire for my home and I feel this burst of energy to see them to fruition. I had always dreamed of having a terra cotta colored kitchen, adorned with all of my Spanish and Carribbean-influenced art. I was so ecstatic to put the art up in my kitchen because I spend a lot of time there these days. I took pictures mostly of the details because although the hue of "brown clay" makes me happy, it is the details that remind me of just how great our God is. Each item in my kitchen has a story behind it that reminds me to treasure those relationships (even amidst the mundane washing dishes and feeding the dog).

Here is one of my two favorite paintings I got in Aruba on my visa renewal trip with my chamas: Elisha, Abby, & Alba. They will go up on the wall once I find the correct hardware, but for now they sit in the Spanish-influenced plate we got for our wedding. The top one is of a church and the bottom is the classic divi divi tree found on the island.

Did I mention that my friend (and neighbor!) Rebekah just happened to have this handy microwave cart which fits perfectly in our kitchen? Very exciting! I'm planning on putting the two Aruban pieces on the wall above this.

Here is one of my cute bully sleeping in her new nook. Notice the Zoe art in the window sill.

Here is a piece of artwork that my dear friend Elisha, whom I spent a year in Venezuela with, sent me for my birthday. She was with me when we went to Merida (one of the most beautiful places in the world, sitting right in the Andes Mountains); we looked for original artwork that we carried back via a bus in the rain! What fun memories!

These two pieces are ones that my husband let me buy on our honeymoon in the Dominican Republic. I really wanted art more than anything there so he let me buy 3 paintings and went to countless stores with me and waited patiently while I found the perfect pieces. I like these because although I doubt these two are originals, they reflect the indigenous life there on the island. They aren't glamorous in their content but they are brilliant in their color. That's kinda how I feel about myself sometimes. Not exceedingly glamorous, but passionate and full of heart!

I love this one (I'm obviously not a photographer as you can tell) but it seems like the blue glass in illuminated! Each vase in the window reminds me of a relationship I treasure:

The blue glass canister is from my Bible study leader and charming friend, Dawn Bonker. I absolutely love all things blue glass!

(In the sill but not visible in the picture) The ladybug spoonrest is from my dear friend Nancy who works at Wycliffe and blessed me so much with her tender heart of prayer and her hilarious antics. She is one of the youngest 70 year olds I've EVER met!

The four vases in the middle were Brian's maternal grandmother's. I never had the honor of meeting her, but feel pretty blessed to have something of hers in my kitchen. Also, if you can see the little face, those are Monk salt & pepper shakers which Brian "inherited" from his grandma and thought were especially fitting. Looks like they are sporting a typical Luther hairdo. haha!

After that is a rounded vase which my best friend Cristen brought back from a trip to Mexico for me! I love the green and purple and I use it for fake flowers and pens/pencils.

Here are two pieces one from a Venezuelan friend (there are so many I'm having trouble remembering who! Was it Julieta?) and the one on the right from my friend Laurie who now lives out in CA!! She brought it all the way back from Mexico for me on a church missions trip!

Also from Mexico is this awesome sun that I put over the arch of Zoe's nook. My dad brought this back for me on one of his many international trips. It is made of "brown clay" which inspired my kitchen color!

If you look over the entryways you can faintly see artwork: one is a picture of Calle de Carabobo, Venezuela's famous street in downtown Maracaibo. Brian visited me there while we were dating! The other entryway has a print of Maracaibo done by a local artist given to me by the missionary family I served with, the Onishi's. It was a wedding present (if I remember correctly) and really blessed me that they sent that even though they couldn't make it.

And what room wouldn't be complete without a hint of India. On the wall next to the cabinet is an Indian find that helps keep me organized with all my coupons!

Thanks Dad for all your hard work and to all who are a part of my kitchen!